After a very rough start to their 2013-2014 season, the Florida Panthers began their uphill climb back to respectability this past week as they earned five out of a possible ten points on their five-game West Coast road trip. Through physical play and determination, the Panthers put themselves in a position to win in nearly every game of their lengthy stay away from home. While they may have not been able to rack up the kind of goals that they had hoped for, there was something the team did dish out in bunches – bruises.
Led by the efforts of defensemen Erik Gudbranson and Dmitry Kulikov, the Panthers rattled consistently rattled their opponents last week and even earned three of the top 10 spots in this week’s top hits from the NHL Network. Out of the ten spots, Gudbranson earned the 10th and 6th best hits of the week, while Kulikov’s throwback hip-check on rookie Nathan MacKinnon earned him the 4th spot.
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