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Florida Panthers at World Championships Update

May 16, 2018, 2:28 PM ET [2 Comments]
Mark Paul
Florida Panthers Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
While the Florida Panthers season may be over, four of their players went to represent their country's at the World Championships of Hockey in Denmark. The World Championships have been a great place for players to hone their skills and often come back better players because of it.

Sidney Crosby going to the World's in 2015 is the most notable. After winning the Stanley Cup in 2009, Crosby spent six years struggling to get out of the first two rounds. The season after his 2015 World Championship appearance (and gold medal victory), Crosby went on to win two Stanley Cups in a row. Not to say that many other factors resulted in those Cup wins, but it is widely regarded that the gold medal victory for Crosby allowed for an emotional resurgence for the Penguins captain.

It's always a positive when players on a team that missed the playoffs go and compete in a tournament of high level hockey. Aaron Ekblad is playing for Canada, Evgeni Dadanov and Maxim Mamin for Russia and Harri Sateri for Finland. Let's take a look at how each player has been playing thus far in the World Championships.

Aaron Ekblad
Along with Aaron Ekblad joining Team Canada, Florida Panthers assistant coach Bob Boughner is coaching for Canada. This has led to a lot of minutes for Ekblad as the comfort level is high between the two. Ekblad has five points in seven games for the young defenseman. With Ekblad getting top pairing minutes, this can only help his confidence as Canada is certainly one of the favorites for the gold medal.

Harri Sateri
Florida's third string goaltender has been the starting netminder for Team Finland and has played extremely well. Finland finished first place in their group (ahead of Canada and the United States) and Sateri won four games with a .954 save percentage and a 1.00 goals against average leading the tournament in both areas. This has to be encouraging for Panthers executives as he may be able to fetch an additional draft pick if traded at the Entry Draft in June.

Evgeny Dadanov
With two goals and four assists in the group stage (round robin) of the tournament, Dadanov is playing an important role for the Russia. Playing on the second forward line, Dadanov has to offset teams playing their top players against Pavel Datsyuk and his line. Russia plays Canada for the first game of the elimination round so it'll be interesting to see how Dadanov steps up in a big elimination game. Should give a picture of how he may play come playoff time.

Maxim Mamin
Mamin hasn't had a lot of ice time and is basically playing a fourth line role for the Russians. Nevertheless, he has managed to score three goals, the same amount of goals he had in 26 games for the Panthers. As a sixth round pick in 2016, no one is expecting huge things out of Mamin. If Mamin can use this tournament to get himself to a new level, it's not out of the realm of possibility that he could become a solid bottom six forward with the potential to score 15-20 goals.

Good luck to all the Florida Panthers players as they head into elimination games starting Thursday May 17!
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