Panther Parkway Post-Game: Panthers vs. Hurricanes

Stars of the game

1st: Jiri Tlusty (2G-0A-2P)

2nd: Anton Khudobin (35-35 saves – 1.000 sv%)

3rd: Jeff Skinner (1G-0A-1P)

Goals (Hurricanes 3, Panthers 0)

CAR: Jiri Tlusty (13) Assists: Eric Staal, Brett Bellemore

CAR: Jiri Tlusty (14) Assists: Andrei Loktionov, Justin Faulk

CAR: Jeff Skinner (28) Assists: Patrick Dwyer

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Roberto Luongo Injured in 3-0 Loss to Hurricanes

In what was becoming one of the feel-good stories in an otherwise forgettable season, Panthers goaltender Robert Luongo left Thursday night’s game against the Caroline Hurricanes with an apparent upper-body injury.

With less than seven minutes remaining in the first period, Hurricanes winger and former Panther, Radek Dvorak, crashed hard into Luongo as he attempted to put the puck past the Cats’ formidable goaltender. Though it didn’t look serious at first, replay showed that Dvorak’s elbow had made contact with Luongo’s head during the altercation.

Dvorak would eventually be assessed with a five-minute major for charging and a game misconduct.

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Panther Parkway Post-Game: Panthers vs. Hurricanes

Three Stars

1st: Hurricanes: Brett Bellemore (1G-0A-1P)

2nd: Hurricanes: Anton Khudobin  (34/35 saves, .971 SV%)

3rd: Hurricanes: Riley Nash (1G-0A-1P)

Goals (Hurricanes 5, Panthers 1)

CAR: Riley Nash (8) Assists: Tuomo Ruutu

CAR: Alexander Semin (14) Assists: Unassisted

FLA: Nick Bjugstad (13) Assists: Dylan Olsen, Scottie Upshall

CAR: Brett Bellemore (2) Assists: Elias Lindholm, Jeff Skinner

CAR: Jiri Tlusty (9) Assists: Eric Staal

CAR: Andrej Sekera (9) (Power Play) Assists: Jeff Skinner, Jordan Staal

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Game Day Preview: Panthers vs. Hurricanes. I Told A Dream To You

FLORIDA PANTHERS: 18-22-7 (43 PTS.) vs. CAROLINA HURRICANES: 19-18-9 (47 PTS.)

TSN GAMEDAY

GAME DAY SONG: Restless Nights, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band

This will be the first meeting of the season between these two former division rivals.  After seeing the Canes six times per year over the last few seasons, it’s been a nice break not to have to face a team that seemingly gives the Panthers fits at the worst possible time.

If things continue to follow pattern tonight for the Panthers, this game should result in a win.  The Panthers who have been looking for consistency may have found it in 2014, albiet not in a positive way, but hey, it’s something.  The Panthers have established a consistent pattern of winning a game, then losing the following game.  That said after being shutout on Thursday night 3-0 to the San Jose Sharks, if the pattern holds true, the Panthers should win tonight.  But those things can’t be counted on, and that’s why they play the games.

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Strong Third Period Powers Panther Past Hurricanes

Despite everything that has gone wrong for the Florida Panthers during their current six-game losing streak, they had to like their chances of ending it Tuesday night against the Carolina Hurricanes. The Canes spent Monday night/Tuesday morning traveling back to Raleigh following their loss to the New York Rangers, meaning they wouldn’t exactly have their legs under them for this game. Of course, the last time the same scenario presented itself, the Montreal Canadiens skated the Cats out of their own building. This time, however, the Panthers took advantage and rode a four goal third period to a 4-1 win in their farewell to Carolina as a Southeast division opponent.
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Game Day: Florida Panthers vs. Carolina Hurricanes. Have You Thrown Your Senses To The War?

FLORIDA PANTHERS: 7-16-6  (20 PTS.) vs. CAROLINA HURRICANES: 15-11-1 (31 PTS.)

TSN GAMEDAY

GAMEDAY SONG:  Lost In The Flood

The hits just keep on coming this season for the Florida Panthers as two more players have gone down with injuries.  Ed Jovanovski returned after missing 21 games Saturday night when the Panthers took on the New York Islanders, finds himself back on the shelf again.  After playing just over 10 minutes in the first two periods, Jovanovski did not reappear for the remainder of the game.  At Monday’s practice it was revealed that Jovo will be re-evaluated after the Panthers return home from their five game, eight day road trip that starts tonight in Carolina.  In addition to Jovanovski, tough guy George Parros is also out of the lineup.  Parros who fought Eric Boulton in Saturday’s game landed hard on the ice at the tail end of the fight, and that is likely what injured him.  The Panthers have recalled Eric Selleck from San Antonio to take Parros’s spot in the lineup.  The list of injured players is almost long enough to put two lines together.

The Panthers have now lost six in a row, and also dropped nine of its past 10. And 11 of its past 13. And 16 of 19. That hurt to type as much as I’m sure it hurt to read. Saturday’s loss to the New York Islanders finds the Panthers with a 4-8-5 record on home ice this season.  During this recent six game skid which sees them at 0-5-1, they’ve been outscored 26-11. Going on a road trip may be just what they need, however if you think you don’t recognize them now, who knows what we’ll find when they come back.  The next home game will be Thursday the 28th against Buffalo, and if the slide continues, Dale Tallon may not wait till the deadline of April 3rd to start making changes.

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Surprise Surprise: The NHL’s Biggest Surprises

We are about 45 days into the shortened season, which means we are nearing the half-way point of the 2013 NHL regular season. With the majority of teams already playing at least 22 games each, we’ve been able to take a good look at the players who have been showing this 48-game season what they’re made of. As usual, guys like Sidney Crosby and Steven Stamkos are sticking to the status quo and owning the top of the stats charts. But I’m not here to state the obvious. I’m here to give a nod to the players whom I believe have been the biggest surprises thus far.

Below are my top 7 player picks for this seasons biggest surprises:

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Panthers’ Goals Against Problem Has No Easy Fix

Shortly after Scott Clemmensen surrendered the second goal of the first period against the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday night, the boos began to rain down from the stands.  A chant of “We want Markstrom” formed shortly after.  It appeared that the Panthers crowd finally lost all patience with the veteran backstop, and for good reason: Clemmensen’s stats this year are simply subpar to say the least, and four crappy periods against the division rival Hurricanes would sink his numbers even further.

At intermission, the venom spewed in Clemmensen’s direction was reaching an all-time high: fans on Twitter demanded that Clemmensen be subbed out in favor of the young Jacob Markstrom, who was totally not in a position to play after not practicing for days and just getting his pads at around the time the puck dropped.  At least a couple fans even maintained that they would refuse to renew their season tickets if Dineen didn’t pull Clemmensen.  And maybe the Panthers coach might’ve consideredswitching the struggling netminder out in favor of the potentialed Swede, if he thought it would make any difference.

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Game Day Preview: Winnipeg Jets vs. Florida Panthers

WINNIPEG JETS: 10-10-1 (21 PTS.) vs. FLORIDA PANTHERS: 6-11-5 (17 PTS)

TSN GAME DAY

Tonight’s meeting between the Winnipeg Jets and the Florida Panthers will be the third of five between the two Southeast division teams.  Each team has won a game on home ice, with the Panthers winning 6-3 on January 31st when Alex Kovalev scored the winning goal, and Winnipeg won on February 5th in overtime when Brian Little scored the game winner as the Jets beat the Panthers 3-2.  The Jets begin a four game road swing that takes them to Tampa on Thursday and then right back here in Sunrise on Friday before they head to New Jersey on Sunday to finish their trip.  They’ll be looking for their third consecutive road win this evening and are 6-4-1 away from the MTS Center overall. 

The Jets now find themselves in the thick of the Eastern Conference playoff hunt after winning three of their last four which included two victories New Jersey Devils and one against the New York Rangers.  The winning streak came to a halt when the Jets were shutout by the Washington Capitals 3-0 in a game that saw Winnipeg outshoot the Caps 31-8 in the first two periods.  Brayden Holtby of Washington however played an outstanding game for Washington, and held the Jets at bay. One of the problems for the Jets has been their power play which sits near the bottom of the league with a 14.3% success percentage.  Claude Noel the Winnipeg coach spoke about it after the loss to Washington:

“We probably could have used one on the power play,” coach Claude Noel said. “The power play will probably be a topic because [the media] can’t think past the stats. I thought that our power play was better than it has been.”

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Game Day Preview: Carolina Hurricanes vs. Florida Panthers. It’s Your Move

CAROLINA HURRICANES:  11-8-1 (23 PTS.) vs. FLORIDA PANTHERS: 6-10-5 (17 PTS.)

TSN GAMEDAY

Someone once told me that” it’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it”.

Not much to say in today’s preview, but that statement will may not more meaning than it does tonight when the Florida Panthers try to avenge themselves for last night’s beating at the hands of division leading rival Carolina Hurricanes.  The Panthers who were chewed out by coach Kevin Dineen, and rightfully so for their slow start, and poor preparation, fell further behind the division lead in what could be their only hope for a playoff birth this season:

“You can blame it on injuries but that’s the ultimate cop out. It was a big game against the divisional leader and we could have reeled them in. We weren’t prepared from the drop of the puck. And that leads to injury. If you don’t have your game face, well, it’s a man’s game out there.”

A win tonight by Carolina will give them an eight point lead over the bruised and now battered Florida Panthers who are experiencing a second season in a row of injuries.  As you are aware, Jose Theodore, Dmitry Kulikov and apparently Scottie Upshall were all hurt in last night’s loss.  Kris Versteeg who made the trip but did not play, could be in the lineup tonight.  Reinforcements from San Antonio include goaltender Jacob Markstrom and veteran defenceman Nolan Yonkman.
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