FLORIDA PANTHERS: 19-23-7 (45 PTS.) vs. BUFFALO SABRES: 13-27-7 (33 PTS.)
GAME DAY SONG: Thunder Road, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band
The Florida Panthers complete their quick three game road trip tonight with the second of back to back games against the Buffalo Sabres. The Panthers are coming off an emotional victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins last night, ending the Penguins 13 game home winning streak by simply out playing the Pens in every facet of the game.
The Panthers came out flying in the first 10 minutes giving goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury a taste of what was to come the entire night. The forecheck was aggressive, the shots were more accurate, and guess what? The net presence and pysicality was noticeable. While the Panthers continued their power play futility, their first goal was scored on a short handed opportunity late in the first period by Drew Shore who buried a shot past Fleury as the Panthers were on an odd man rush, catching the Penguins by surprise. Shore would later score his second goal of the game at 13:34 of the middle period giving the Panthers a two goal cushion.
The victory was one of the most complete games that the Panthers have played all season, and the scoring finally came from players who haven’t contributed in quite some time, namely Shawn Matthias who scored his 5th goal of the year to make it 5-1 late in the third. Jonathan Huberdeau also got off the schnied scoring a controversial goal in the third which was under review for what seemed to be 10 minutes. Huberdeau was in a scrum in the crease, ended up in the net himself, as did the puck. Finally a goal that was reviewed went the Panthers way.