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game recap

Huberdeau, Brickley boost Panthers past Wild

Combine for three goals in third period to propel Florida to comeback victory

by Alain Poupart / NHL.com Correspondent

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Connor Brickley scored the go-ahead goal at 11:14 of the third period, and the Florida Panthers defeated the Minnesota Wild 4-2 at BB&T Center on Friday.

Brickley, a late addition to the lineup when Jamie McGinn was scratched after warmups because of an upper-body injury, scored on the rebound of a Keith Yandle shot to make it 3-2.

 

[WATCH: All Wild vs. Panthers highlights]

 

"It's kind of hard to put in words really, the feeling," Brickley said. "That's just being a professional and you just have to do what you gotta do. You just have to be ready no matter what. Crazy things happen in this game. I was excited to get the opportunity to get out there."

Jonathan Huberdeau had two goals, and Vincent Trocheck scored for the Panthers (14-16-5). James Reimer made 29 saves in his eighth consecutive start.

Video: MIN@FLA: Trocheck buries wrister from sharp angle

Huberdeau scored his second goal into an empty net to make it 4-2 with 5.6 seconds left. He came in with one goal in his previous 10 games.

"He's been in a little bit of a drought lately and wasn't shooting enough," Florida coach Bob Boughner said. "We talked to him before the game about taking more pucks to the net and stop looking for the pass so much, and hopefully he took it to heart because it looked like he did."

Ryan Suter and Daniel Winnik scored for the Wild (18-14-3), who have lost three of four. Alex Stalock made 30 saves.

Video: MIN@FLA: Suter blasts home PPG from the blue line

Minnesota led by one goal entering the third period, but Huberdeau scored two minutes in when he toe-dragged around defenseman Nate Prosser and backhanded it past Stalock to tie it 2-2.

"We made a couple of mistakes (in the third period), and they put it in," Wild coach Bruce Boudreau said. "Then you're fighting from behind and chasing the game."

It was the second consecutive game the Panthers rallied from down 2-1 in the third to win 3-2 after doing so at the Arizona Coyotes on Tuesday.

"Obviously, it's a great character win coming back from a deficit like that against a great team over there," Trocheck said. "It was just determination. We started off in the third period with no quit."

Suter put the Wild ahead 1-0 with a power-play goal at 8:09 of the first period when his slap shot from the point deflected off Panthers center Derek MacKenzie's stick.

Trocheck tied it 1-1 at 16:53 with a wrist shot from the top of the right face-off circle that went in off Stalock's glove.

Winnik gave Minnesota a 2-1 lead at 10:34 of the second period when he scored with a one-handed backhand on the rebound of his breakaway. The goal ended a 25-game drought for Winnik.

"I think I've been playing good hockey of late," Winnik said. "Sometimes the goals don't come. It's finally nice to get that streak busted for myself."

 

Goal of the game

Huberdeau's goal at 2:00 of the third period.

Video: MIN@FLA: Huberdeau scores after nifty toe drag

 

Save of the game

Stalock stopping defenseman Aaron Ekblad on a Panthers power play at 4:35 of the first period.

Video: MIN@FLA: Stalock slides across to deny Ekblad

 

Highlight of the game

Winnik's goal at 10:34 of the second period.

Video: MIN@FLA: Winnik uses one hand to tap in rebound

 

They said it

"It's very frustrating and not the first time it's happened to us too. It seems to be a recurring theme; unfortunately, that's not what playoff teams do. We've got to buckle down in the third with the lead, and it's got to be a point or two points every single time." -- Wild forward Daniel Winnik on losing after leading entering the third period

"[Goalie James Reimer] played solid. I thought we were pretty good in front of him. I didn't think we gave up a heck of a lot, which was important. I thought our defensive effort was good. He came up with the saves, especially when they had the goalie pulled. It was nice to see him play another solid game." -- Panthers coach Bob Boughner

 

Need to know

Wild forward Nino Niederreiter left the game at 12:02 of the first period with a lower-body injury. … Minnesota forward Matt Cullen became the fourth active player and fourth born in the United States to play in 1,400 NHL games. … Ekblad led all skaters with 29:43 of ice time and had a game-high eight shots on goal, twice as many as anybody else on Florida.

 

What's next

Wild: At the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; SUN, FS-N, NHL.TV)

Panthers: Host the Ottawa Senators on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; SN360, CITY, FS-F, NHL.TV)

Video: Huberdeau scores twice as Panthers beat Wild, 4-2

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