The Florida Panthers came in 10th in the east last season and were in the race all the way till the end. This list will go by order of importance.
- Barkov stays healthy- I believe along with Aaron Ekblad that Barkov is the future of this team. Hes a big 2 way center that can score pass defend and control the puck.Barkov has had some difficulty staying healthy through the beginning part of his career, and really had a break out last half to the season along with Jagr and Huberdeu.
- Nick Bjustad and another player need to reach 30 goals- Last year what the Cats were lacking in most was a consistent goal scorer. Nick is a big goal scoring center man that most likely will hit the 30 goal mark this year. Along with Bjustad another player needs to reach 30. Most likely it will be sniper Brandon Pirri or former Calder winner Jonathan Huberdeu.
- The blue line stays healthy- We can assume the Iron Man Brian Campbell will play his 5th straight 82 game season, but others like Guddy, captain Willie Mitchell, Kulikov, and Kampher need to stay healthy to give Loungo some help.
- Loungo stays strong- Bobby Lou is at the tail end of his career at 36 years old. Loungo had a great season last year earning a spot on the all star team and helping the Panthers become the most improved team last year.
- Ekblad wins the Norris- Aaron is only in his sophomore campain, but the 19 year old has already become 1st ovr pick, all star, and Calder winner. Watching this kid play the game is poetry in motion he is a rock defensively using the body and the stick. Hes a great offensive player also scoring 37 points in his rookie season witch is 3rd all time for a rookie dman behind Hall of Famers Phil Housley and Bobby Orr. I think he for sure has what it takes to get the award this year but no doubt will be in the running every year for maybe the next 10 years.