It’s playoff time, and we all know what that means: The Canucks are yet again not part of it, and this fan base needs to find a team to cheer for, in hopes of somehow filling the void in our cold, bitter hearts. And that means it’s time for the 2022 Nucks Misconduct Bandwagon Outreach Program. We get that for some of you, cheering on another team is a non-starter. That’s fine, but shut up about it already. This is for those who just want to see a result they can live with.
Florida is mess. I mean, politically this state is just an absolute garbage fire of hatred, racism, intolerance and misinformation that would be comical if it weren’t real. So we’re using that as a disclaimer here, and we totally understand if you can’t bring yourself to cheer for a team that comes from a place currently trying to convince the world that Disney is trying to make your kids gay. Moving on...
In spite of all that, there’s a lot to like about this Florida team. Do you like goals? I mean, lots of goals? You will love the Florida Panthers. They scored an average of almost five per game this season, and damn near potted a hundred more than they allowed. In a season where we saw goal scoring go up dramatically, they were the prime example.
They’ve done a fine job of taking castoffs from other teams and getting incredible output from them. Look at the seasons they got out of Sam Reinhart, Anthony Duclair, and 18 year old Sam Bennett. They also had Jonathan Huberdeau, who rattled off 85 assists this season, and Aleksander Barkov, who was one short of the 40 goal plateau.
They also have some guys who you might enjoy seeing finally getting to raise Lord Stanley’s mug in Joe Thornton and trade deadline pickup Claude Giroux. This is most surely Thornton’s last go round, as he played in just 34 games this season, and while his usage on their journey may be limited, his experience will come in handy.
They have Sergei Bobrovsky in goal, another guy who’s been around for a long time and never gotten the success he probably deserves. And let’s not overlook their goalie of the future, Spencer Knight, who could step in should Bobrovsky get taken off the case.
They also have one of the finest looking jersey setups in the entire league. Clean, simple, yet not as boring as the majority of teams these days. Not that this is a huge reason, but it’s just something I enjoy about this team.
It’s been the best year in this franchise’s history, and they’d love to cap it with their first ever Stanley Cup Championship. If you’re looking for a bandwagon to hop on, this might be a good fit.