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REVIEW: HURRICANES 2, PANTHERS 2

by Staff Writer / Carolina Hurricanes

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Josef Vasicek scored his first two NHL points as the Carolina Hurricanes played to a 2-2 tie with the Florida Panthers at the National Car Rental Center in Sunrise, Florida.

The Panthers (0-1-1-1) remained winless and have yet to hold to a lead, while Carolina (1-0-2) remained unbeaten. The teams have gone into overtime seven times in their past 11 meetings.

"It's typical," Hurricanes coach Paul Maurice said. "It's what you would expect from a division rival. Most of these games are tough, and they always seem to be close. It seems that whenever one team scores, the other answers with a goal."

The Hurricanes are unbeaten in their past 20 overtime games (4-0-16). They preserved the tie when Arturs Irbe stopped Ray Whitney on a breakaway with a minute left.

"When I saw him coming right at me, I thought he would try to pull something sneaky," Irbe said. "He's very creative, but I think maybe he got a little too cute."

Irbe also stopped a breakaway by Sillinger and finished with 26 saves. Florida's Trevor Kidd made 22 saves against his former team.

Rob DiMaio's first goal of the season, on a feed from Martin Gelinas, gave Carolina a 1-0 lead 1:53 in. Vasicek assisted on the play for his first NHL point.

In the second period, Sami Kapanen stole the puck from Dan Boyle and fed Vasicek, who scored his first NHL goal on former Hurricanes goaltender Trevor Kidd to put Carolina ahead 2-1 at 5:39 of second period.

There were no penalties in the third period, when both teams played dump-and-chase hockey.

"We were trying to protect the point, but we were going for the win," Vasicek said. "We're a little disappointed it didn't come out better for us."

The Hurricanes have lost only once at Florida in the past three seasons.

BOX SCORE

1st 2nd 3rd OT TOTAL

Carolina 1 1 0 0 2

Florida 1 1 0 0 2

First Period: Scoring: 1, Carolina, Dimaio 1 (Gelinas, Vasicek), 1:53. 2, Florida, Sillinger 1 (Boyle, Mellanby), 3:07. Penalties: Langdon, Car (fighting major), 6:59; Laus, Fla (fighting major), 6:59; Halko, Car (slashing), 9:39; Willis, Car (tripping), 17:24; Worrell, Fla (high sticking), 19:15.

Second Period: Scoring: 3, Carolina, Vasicek 1 (Kapanen), 5:39. 4, Florida, P Bure 2 (power play) (R Svehla, Larionov), 9:54. Penalties: Karpa, Car (interference), 8:51; Battaglia, Car (hooking), 10:20; Karpa, Car (unsportsmanlike conduct), 12:04; Spacek, Fla , 15:07.

Third Period: Scoring: None.

Overtime: Scoring: None.

SHOTS ON GOAL
Carolina 9 6 8 1 --24
Florida 8 7 10 3 --28

Power-play Conversions: Car - 0 of 2, Fla - 1 of 5. Goalies: Carolina, Irbe (28 shots, 26 saves; record: 1-0-2). Florida, Kidd (24, 22; record: 0-1-1). A:13,764. Referees: Degrace, Faucette. Linesmen: Racicot, Arnell.

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