Today's story should be about tomorrow. It should be about Panthers rookies Jonathan Huberdeau and Drew Shore.

It should tell how they're roommates, and linemates, and teamed up for the winning goal in Saturday's third period — Shore passing through the goal-mouth, Huberdeau knocking it home — to beat Tampa Bay.

The story instead is how the Panthers keep blowing the chance to be relevant this winter. It was one thing, as lousy as it was, to watch them blow a two-goal lead in the final minutes against Washington and lose in overtime to open this homestead.

It was another thing to watch it happen again Saturday.

"We have to close that out,'' defenseman Mike Weaver said.

"These are games we need,'' forward Jake Skille said.

"That's a hard loss for us,'' coach Kevin Dineen said.

Throw in the 1-0 loss to Montreal on Thursday and that makes three straight overtime losses. At home. Against struggling teams. When it's getting too late in the season to be considered early anymore.