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By The Numbers: Panthers 2, Rangers 1

by Staff Writer / Florida Panthers
Panthers By The Numbers takes a closer look at some of the

interesting stats that you may or may have not known about.

  Panthers 2, Rangers 1

11 – The Rangers owned the first period in a lot of the categories. They out hit the Panthers by 11 (15-4) and out shot them by 9 (17-8). Ryan Callahan led New York with three hits while Nikolai Zherdev had four shots.

2 – Signing with the Rangers in the off-season as a free agent, Markus Naslund was counted on for offense as well as a veteran presence. The Swedish forward scored his 19th of the season but it was just his second goal in the last eight games as he followed up on Scott Gomez’s shot 7:34 into the first period.

3 – For the third time in the last four games, the Panthers failed to score a goal in the first two periods of play. It was their second time they’ve scored twice in the final period to win. They failed to score in the third in a 4-0 loss to the Blackhawks and scored twice in a 2-0 victory over the Bruins.

83 – Gomez was dominant in the face-off circle against the Panthers through two periods of play winning 83% of his draws (10 of 12). He won 3 out of 4 in the first and 7 out of 8 in the second. Gomez finished off winning 82% of his draws (14 of 17) as he won 4 out of 5 in the final period of play.

8 – The Panthers were symmetrical through the first two periods of play in one category. After firing eight shots at Henrik Lundqvist in the opening period, the Panthers matched that in the second. Anthony Stewart was the only skater to have multiple shots in either period, registering two in the second.

12 – The drought is over. For the Panthers leading scorer, the past month hasn’t been fun in terms of the scoring department. It’s been almost an entire month (January 27th) since David Booth last scored, but he took a pass from Stephen Weiss and beat Lundqvist through the wickets for his 21st of the year and end his 12 game scoring drought. It took the Panthers 51:50 to get on the board, but Booth’s score knotted the score at one at Madison Square Garden.

1:00 – Feeling the momentum shift, Florida pounced on the Rangers as Nathan Horton gave the Panthers a 2-1 lead just a minute later and on the very next shot. Taking a backhanded shot, Horton netted his 18th of the season. Horton now leads the team with five game-winning goals on the season, one more than Weiss.

40 – Craig Anderson was the busier of the two netminders, but he was up to the task. Playing in his second straight game due to an ear infection to starting netminder Tomas Vokoun, Anderson stopped 40 of 41 shots in the contest. He stopped 17 in the first, 13 in the second and 10 in the third. Anderson has stopped 77 of the 78 shots at the Garden this season.

0 – Both penalty kill units were up to the task Thursday night as they killed off every penalty assessed in the game. Florida put five shots on net on their four powerplay attempts (8:00) but came up empty while New York had seven shots on goal on their three power play opportunities, including 48 seconds of a two-man power play advantage (5:12 total).

1 – This year’s Panther team did something no other team has done in franchise history: sweep the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden during a season. The 2008-09 Panthers went 3-0-1 against the Blueshirts this season, including a 4-0 victory back on November 30th.

16 – Speaking of firsts. How about mosts… As in this year’s squad now has the most points in franchise history in the month of February as their record of 8-4-0 gives them 16 points, one more than the previous high of 15 which had been reached in 2003-04 (6-4-3-0), 2006-07 (6-3-3) and 2007-08 (6-6-3). They can add to their new record as they have one more game in February (Saturday against New Jersey).
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