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game recap

Panthers end nine-game slide vs. Oilers at home

Defeat them in Florida for first time since 2002

by Alain Poupart / Correspondent

SUNRISE, Fla. -- The Florida Panthers ended a nine-game home losing streak against the Edmonton Oilers with a 4-1 victory at BB&T Center on Thursday.

Evgenii Dadonov, Nick Bjugstad, Jonathan Huberdeau and Colton Sceviour scored, and Roberto Luongo made 26 saves for the Panthers (4-5-3), who had not defeated the Oilers at home since March 8, 2002. Vincent Trocheck and Mike Hoffman each had two assists. Hoffman extended his point streak to 10 games, the longest active streak in the NHL.

Leon Draisaitl scored, and Cam Talbot made 29 saves for the Oilers (8-7-1), who ended their four-game road trip with a third consecutive loss (1-3-0).


[WATCH: All Oilers vs. Panthers highlights]


It was Luongo's first home start this season. He was making his second consecutive start after missing 10 games because of a knee injury sustained in the season opener Oct. 6.

The Panthers, who hadn't played since defeating the Winnipeg Jets 4-2 in the second game of the NHL Global Series in Helsinki on Friday, won at BB&T Center for the first time this season (1-3-1). They also have won consecutive games for the first time this season.

Video: EDM@FLA: Bjugstad beats Talbot in front

"We've had a lot of time off," Luongo said. "It's nice to get a little bit of a roll here. Like I said after [the] last game, we've got to make it happen on the ice. It's not just going to happen. We've just got to keep pushing hard and doing what we've been doing the last couple of games and making sure that we don't take things for granted here."

Edmonton outshot Florida 10-7 in the first period, but the game was 0-0 after some big saves by Luongo. In the first 4:29, he stopped Draisaitl and Ty Rattie on back-door redirections.

"He was the best player on the ice tonight," Panthers coach Bob Boughner said. "I was a little leery about us starting slow in the first five or 10 minutes. He stopped two or three big-time chances. That's what he does. It was nice to have that. It pumped us up a little bit."

The Panthers scored twice to take a 2-0 lead in the second period when they outshot the Oilers 19-4.

Video: EDM@FLA: Barkov sets up Dadonov for gorgeous goal

Dadonov made it 1-0 at 6:45 when he scored in front to complete a three-way passing play with Aleksander Barkov and Hoffman. Hoffman joined Pavel Bure, Olli Jokinen and Jussi Jokinen as the only players in Panthers history with a point streak of at least 10 games.

"I guess it's good," Hoffman said. "I'm trying to help this team win as many games as possible. You get a couple of lucky bounces for a few points over a streak like that. You need it for it to happen. I'm just happy we got the two points tonight."

Bjugstad made it 2-0 at 8:12 after he got to a loose puck in front after Bogdan Kiselevich's shot was blocked.

Draisaitl scored 23 seconds into the third period when he redirected a pass from Connor McDavid after a Florida turnover in the neutral zone.

Video: EDM@FLA: Draisaitl finishes McDavid's sweet pass

Huberdeau made it 3-1 with a power-play goal at 3:43, and Sceviour scored into an empty net with 49 seconds remaining.

"If we had been able to go 2-2 on this road trip, we would have been feeling a little better about ourselves, but we have a few games at home to climb back up above .500," Talbot said. "So that's our focus right now."

Sceviour missed practice earlier this week for the birth of his son, Declan Bruce.

"Obviously it's been a bit of a whirlwind," Sceviour said. "It's been a crazy week, but it's been a blast. I'm pretty excited. It's fun and now [it's] back into hockey and get going forward."


They said it

"We have to come home now and put an end to this streak that we're on. Good teams find a way to do that. We haven't been able to do it on the road, so we have to do it at home now." -- Oilers coach Todd McLellan


"Right away tonight I felt that I was reading the plays well. A couple of back doors where I was able to see the guy out of the corner of my eye, so I was able to react when the pass went across. After that, the boys took over and I thought played a really good game." -- Panthers goalie Roberto Luongo


Need to know

McLellan coached his 802nd NHL game, tying Art Ross for 40th place. … Huberdeau's goal was the 98th of his NHL career, moving him past Ray Whitney into sole possession of 10th place in Florida history. … The Panthers won 42 of 67 face-offs (63 percent).

Video: EDM@FLA: Huberdeau buries PPG from the high slot


What's next

Oilers: Host the Colorado Avalanche on Sunday (9:30 p.m. ET; SN1, SNW (JIP), ALT, NHL.TV)

Panthers: Host the New York Islanders on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; FS-F, MSG+, NHL.TV)

Video: Balanced offense leads Panthers past Oilers

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