Video: Aleksander Barkov Scores 1st Career NHL Goal

Just like it was last season, the Florida Panthers once again not only opened their season with a victory, but also earned a big goal from their top-rookie. While it was Jonathan Huberdeau that got the scoring started during last season’s opener, it was 18-year-old Aleskander Barkov’s turn to make headlines for the Panthers as they kicked off the 2013-2014 season against the Dallas Stars on Thursday night. Using his massive frame, Barkov was able to showoff his exceptional puck handling and protection throughout the majority night, constantly holding off wary Stars’ skaters.

While passing the eye test may have been enough to garner high marks in his debut, Barkov went above and beyond expectations when he tied the game at two during the third period after fending off traffic in front of the net long enough to sneak a puck past Stars’ goaltender Kari Lehtonen. Amazingly, Barkov’s 3rd period tally made him the youngest player to score a goal in the NHL’s post-expansion era (1967).

Barkov will look to earn his first career goal scoring streak when the Florida Panthers take on the St. Louis Blues this Saturday.

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Game Day Preview: Florida Panthers vs. Dallas Stars. Show A Little Faith, There’s Magic In The Night



It’s been more than five months since I wrote one of these, so pardon me if this one seems a bit rusty.  Tonight the Florida Panthers open the season with the first game of a four game road trip, which will be a real test to the start of the season.  The Panthers roster that’s dressing for tonight’s game is a far cry from the final game of the 2013 lockout shortened season, and for the better.  Not only are there new faces on the ice, but with new ownership now at the helm, the Florida Panther roster that general manager Dale Tallon has quickly assembled is poised to surprise.

The new additions feature veterans Scott Gomez, Joey Crabb, Krys Barch, Brad Boyes and Jesse Winchester on offence, with Tom Gilbert and Ryan Whitney on defence.  And let’s not forget Tim Thomas in goal.  You could say that the youth movement has been tossed out, but with all the veterans having been signed to one year deals, there really isn’t much to lose, and gives the youth more time to develop.  No need to rush them.

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