Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Miami Ratings March 2014

     104.3 The Ticket stayed on top as the highest rated sports radio station in the Miami/Fort Lauderdale region for the seventh straight month. It was an unusual period in which all three competitors in the market almost remained flat.
     The leader was 104.3 The Ticket as they went down slightly from a 1.5 to a 1.4 in March. Their overall lead was cut to a minimum. The station continued to have consistency with Miami Heat broadcasts along with their daytime lineup.
     Sports Radio 560 WQAM-AM went slightly up from a 0.7 to a 0.8 in the month of March. It was helpful that Florida Panthers games returned to the schedule even though they were far away from playoff contention. The midday block still held on to their audience. There is much anticipation at WQAM on the launch of their new afternoon show with Marc Hochman and Zach Krantz in April.
     940 The Sports Animal WINZ-AM remained the same at a 0.2 for the second consecutive month. The combination John Congemi and Troy Stradford finished the period as The Finsiders interim hosts, however Greg Likens will take over as the new host in April and the program will expand its time slot. The station also expects to see a positive response with the start of the Miami Marlins regular season broadcasts next month.

Denis Potvin Out As Senators Voice

     Former Florida Panthers television game analyst Denis Potvin announced his final Ottawa Senators game for Sportsnet in Canada on Sunday. His contract was not renewed as TSN will pick up the television rights for the club as of next season.
     He was the television game analyst for the Florida Panthers from their first season as an NHL franchise in 1993-94 until 2008-09. His broadcast partners as Panthers play-by-play announcer included Columbus Blue Jackets television voice Jeff Rimer, NBC Sports Network hockey voice Dave Strader and current Florida Panthers television play-by-play announcer Steve Goldstein.
     Potvin, who captained and captured four Stanley Cup championships with the New York Islanders during the early 1980s, worked as a freelance announcer for several Canadian television companies in 2009-10 until he began to work Ottawa Senators games in 2010-11.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Florida Panthers Get First Pick

     The Florida Panthers won the 2014 NHL Draft Lottery on Tuesday night in Toronto. They will select first with the number one overall pick for the 2014 NHL Draft in Philadelphia on June 26. The team was represented at the televised event by Vice President of Hockey Operations Travis Viola.
     The Panthers finished 29th overall in the National Hockey League during the 2013-14 ahead of the Buffalo Sabres. Due to a weighed lottery, the Cats had an 18.8 percent chance to get the top selection while Buffalo had a 25 percent chance.
     Florida finished last overall in the NHL back in 2012-13, however the second seeded Colorado Avalanche won the lottery and would select Nathan MacKinnon. The Panthers followed as they chose Aleksander Barkov with their selection.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Florida Panthers End Season

     The Florida Panthers concluded their 20th anniversary season with a 3-2 defeat to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday night at BB&T Center. The Panthers, who lost 10 of their last 13 games, finished with a record of 29-45-8. The Blue Jackets ended up as the top wild card in Eastern Conference with the victory and will face the Pittsburgh Penguins in the first round of the playoffs.
     In the first period, Columbus(43-32-7) scored on their first shot of the game just 47 seconds into the game. Matt Calvert made a lead pass to Brandon Dubinsky in the left circle, he put a cross-ice pass which was redirected by Cam Atkinson in the crease area. The Blue Jackets started out with a 16-3 shot advantage in the first ten minutes of the first period.
     After Panthers captain Ed Jovanovski received a five-minute elbowing penalty and a game misconduct, the Cats pulled off a shorthanded goal by Vincent Trocheck. He stole the puck from Atkinson at the Panthers line and carried it down the middle of the ice on a breakaway. His initial shot from the low crease was saved, but Trocheck poked in the rebound between the pads of Sergei Bobrovsky to tie it with 1:01 remaining in the first.
     Florida took their first lead early in the second period at 6:35. A right-angle pass by Brandon Pirri was received by Jimmy Hayes at the top right circle and he released a wrist shot from the right-circle dot for his 11th goal.
     A power-play goal by the Blue Jackets with five second left in the man advantage would even it 2-2 at 10:14. Ryan Johansen was in the left circle when he connected a pass to Mark Letestu at the top right circle. His slapshot got by Roberto Luongo as there was traffic in the blue paint.
     The Blue Jackets would get the eventual game-winning goal from Johansen at 5:58 on the power play. James Wisniewski fed a cross-ice pass from the right point to Johansen in the low left circle for a one-time slapshot.
     Luongo had his season record fall to 25-23-7 as he stopped 35 of 38 shots while Bobrovsky made 33 saves and improved to 32-20-5. The Panthers, who finished the season with the worst power play and penalty killing in the NHL, were 0-for-4 with the man advantage and Columbus was successful on two of five occasions.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Nationals Breeze By Marlins

     The Miami Marlins finished a three-game set in Washington D.C. with a 7-1 defeat to the Nationals on Thursday at Nationals Park. The Fish were swept by the Nats and will play a three-game weekend series in Philadelphia.
     Stephen Strasburg(1-1) got the victory for Washington(7-2) as he went 6 2/3 innings, gave up one run on three hits and struck out 12. Tom Koehler dropped to 1-1 for Miami(5-5) as he surrendered two runs on five hits in six innings.
     The Nationals got a two-out rally in the third inning to take the lead 2-0. Anthony Rendon walked and Jayson Werth followed with a two-run homer to center field on a 3-0 pitch.
     The Marlins made it 2-1 in the seventh inning as Marcell Ozuna popped a solo home run to left field on a 0-1 count for his second home run this year.
     In the eighth inning, Washington mowed down the Fish with five runs in the frame against Arquimenes Caminero. Rendon doubled to deep left and advanced to third on a base hit by Werth to center. After Adam LaRoche grounded out to first, pinch-hitter Kevin Frandsen walked to load the bases. Bryce Harper would then walk to score Rendon and increased the Nats lead to 3-1. Ian Desmond smashed a grand-slam home run to center field on a 1-1 pitch for his third homer this season.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Panthers Put Down Maple Leafs

     The Florida Panthers played their second-to-last game this season and beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-2 on Thursday night at BB&T Center. The Cats, who have won two of their last three games, conclude their 20th NHL season on Saturday against the playoff-bound Columbus Blue Jackets. The Maple Leafs lost their third straight game and 11th of its last 13 games.
     Florida(29-44-8) got on the scoreboard quickly at 6:06 of the first period to take the early lead. Quinton Howden sent a backhand pass from the left corner to Brandon Pirri at the top left circle and he snapped a shot by Drew MacIntyre. It was his 13rd goal this season and his sixth point in the last six games.
     In the second period, Toronto(38-35-8) was able to even the game at 4:13. Jake Gardiner carried the puck into the Panthers zone, fed Tyler Bozak in the left circle and he fired a slapshot through Roberto Luongo for the tally.
     The Panthers got a backbreaker of a goal with three seconds left in the period to make it 2-1. Nick Bjugstad skated the puck around the Maple Leafs cage for a wraparound pass from the left of the crease to Brad Boyes to the right of the blue point. He scored on a wrist shot for his 21st goal of the season.
     The Cats continued with their momentum early in the third period at 3:23 as they extended their lead to 3-1. Boyes cycled the puck from the left wing to behind the Leafs net, Sean Bergenheim tipped it to Bjugstad and he entered the low crease area and scored on a snap shot.
     Bjugstad would then score a shorthanded goal several minutes later at 6:02 for a three-goal cushion. Tomas Fleischmann came in on a 2-on-1 breakaway down the left side and give Bjugstad a cross-ice pass in the slot area for him to rip a wrist shot beyond the left glove of MacIntyre for his 16th goal. It was the second shorthanded goal by Florida at home this year and their seventh overall. Toronto gave up their league-leading 11th shorthanded goal on the road in 2013-14.
     The Maple Leafs closed to within two goals at 4-2 with 6:03 remaining. Bozak set up a slapshot by Paul Ranger at the top of the zone which went through traffic in the low slot and into the net. 
     Luongo improved his record this season to 25-22-7 this season as he made 27 saves. MacIntyre, who made his first start in net this year for Toronto, stopped 33 shots and fell to 0-1-0. Neither team scored on the power play as the Cats were 0-for-3 while the Leafs went 0-for-2.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Flyers Playoff Bound Over Panthers

     The Philadelphia Flyers clinched a playoff spot with a 5-2 victory over the Florida Panthers at BB&T Center on Tuesday night. The Cats lost for the sixth time in their last seven games and have two more home games left this season. The Flyers won six of their last seven games they have played in Sunrise.
     The first period was split based on both clubs momentum as neither team scored. Florida(28-44-8) outshot the Flyers 9-1 in the first ten minutes of the game then Philadelphia(41-29-9) had an 11-1 shot advantage for the remainder of the stanza.
     Philadelphia dominated the second period as they compiled four goals. Colby Robak fanned on a clearing pass behind his own net and Adam Hall put a shot on goal from the left of the crease. Vincent Lecavalier got the rebound and placed a wrist shot from the low shot between the pads of Dan Ellis for a 1-0 lead at 2:02. Lecavalier, who has scored five goals in the last seven games, became the seventh Flyer this season to hit the 20-goal plateau.
     The Flyers extended their lead to 2-0 at 6:29 when Nicklas Grossman gave a pass to Claude Giroux at center ice, he entered the Panthers zone and fired a snap shot from the top right circle into the net.
     Giroux would pick up his second goal of the game and his 27th goal this season just over two minutes later at 8:50. Mark Streit was in the right corner when he backhanded the puck to Giroux in the high slot for a one-time wrist shot.
     The Panthers would be down 4-0 with five minutes left. Braydon Coburn took a shot from the right point that went off Matt Read in traffic. Sean Couturier then scored on a snap shot from the low right circle for his 11th tally this year.
     Florida tried to chip away at the four-goal deficit during the third period. Erik Gudbranson made it 4-1 just 1:14 into the period. Former Flyer Scottie Upshall fed a pass from the right wing to Gudbranson at the right point and he sailed a wrist shot by Steve Mason.
     Jonathan Huberdeau followed with his ninth goal of the season at 5:38 as he snapped in a shot from the top left circle. He scored for the first time in 20 games since January 20 against Pittsburgh.
     The Flyers got a three-goal cushion with 4:54 to go. Hall won a faceoff in the right circle, Lecavalier carried the puck down the right circle and sent a cross-ice pass to Tye McGinn for him to redirect it into the Panthers cage. It would be one of only three shots by Philadelphia in the third period as they were outshot 16-3 by the Panthers.
     Ellis dropped to 5-11-0 this season as he stopped 22 of 27 shots. Mason made 38 saves and improved his record to 33-18-7. Both teams were scoreless on the power play as the Cats were 0-for-1 while the Flyers were 0-for-3.