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Panthers Wrap-Up: Blues 4, Panthers 0

by Glenn Odebralski / Florida Panthers

1 2 3 OT T
Panthers 0 0 0 0 0
Blues 1 3 0 0 4
STL - D. Roy (4), C. Stewart (1), PPG - A. Pietrangelo (3), A. Steen (12)

SUNRISE, FL —  ( - St. Louis Blues forward Alexander Steen scored again Friday, but after the game he was more interested in talking about his goalie.

Steen scored his NHL-leading 12th as part of a three-goal second period, Brian Elliott made 31 saves for his 22nd career shutout, and the Blues defeated the Florida Panthers 4-0 at BB&T Center..

"It's disappointing for all of us. Everybody feels bad about it. Understanding that you are playing in the best league in the world and you are absolutely privileged to be in this League, there's no entitlement. And if you don't go out there and play as hard as you can, you will stumble along as we did tonight. The effort wasn't good enough to compete against one of the top teams in the NHL."

- Head coach Kevin Dineen.
1. Close First: In the first 20 minutes, the Panthers had their chances as both they and the Blues traded chances. Florida had a golden opportunity with 11:42 gone as Alex Steen was sent to the box for tripping but the Cats couldn't find a good scoring opportunity and the Blues killed off the power play. They would ride that momentum, scoring two minutes later. With the Cats unable to corral the loose puck on the rush, Derek Roy sent a shot in on net, ringing it off the post. The puck came back and hit Jacob Markstrom in the back and bounced back toward the goal line, crossing the goal before Markstrom could fall on it. Florida finished with 11 shots on net in the first but just like the rest of the night, couldn't find a way to solve Brian Elliott.

2. Second Period Blues: It was the second time in less than a month that the two teams faced off and the second period was once again dominated by the Blues. In their 7-0 victory in St Louis on Oct. 5, the Blues scored four times in the second stanza. Friday night, they struck for three more. The second goal of the game, Markstrom would have liked to take back as Chris Stewart scored from just above the goal line 5:21 into the period. Then on a power play, Alex Pietrangelo worked his way down from his point position and poked a rebound past the netminder with 7:06 gone. The NHL's top goal scorer to start the season, Alex Steen, then made it a four-goal game with his 12th of the season, scoring on a quick shot from just above the crease with 9:18 to play in the period. Just like that, the Blues turned a close game into a not so close one.

3. Tough Home Stand: The Panthers began a season long six-game home stand on  Oct. 17 in a high intensity game against the Boston Bruins as they fell in the final minute of play 3-2 and followed it with a shootout victory over Minnesota but the six-game home stand was unfortunately not one to remember as they were only able to pick up just four points (1-3-2). Elliot and the Blues kept the Panthers off the board as the Cats posted 10 shots in both the second and third periods but the netminder wasn't heavily tested in the victory. 
Memorable twitter posts from the game.

@Charleyy29: Went to the @FlaPanthers game tonight. Tough loss. Tough to watch.

@goldieonice: Kevin Dineen will make lineup changes tomorrow. He said only 3 guys, 17,18,43 competed tonight. #flapanthers very disappointing effort..

Memorable fan posts from the game.

Jane Eshkibok: Can't win every day guys. See u next game!!!

Chris Benestad: It doesnt help the team colors that the fans abandon the team everytime we lose (yeah, I know we have lost A LOT). Ive been a fan since 93 and will continue to be a fan. If we want the panthers to stay we must stay!

1. It took 13 games but rookie forward Aleksander Barkov recorded the first penalty of his NHL career, being sent to the box for hooking with 16:44 gone in the first period.

4. The Panthers were led in a couple of categories by players finishing with four on the night. Shawn Matthias and Brad Boyes each finished with four shots on net while Matthias led the way with four hits. Defenseman Mike Weaver finished with a game-high four blocked shots.

7. The second period hasn't been kind for the Panthers against the Blues as St Louis has outscored them 7-0 in the second period in their season series after recording three goals Friday night.

10. Florida finished with 10 shots on net in both the second and third periods after opening the game with 11 in the first 20 minutes.

75. Forward Marcel Goc had a successful day in the face-off circle, winning 75% of his draws. He went 12-of-16 on the night.

Brian Elliott
Was tested evenly throughout although most of the shots came from the outside.

31 Shots, 31 Saves, 1.000 SV%
The Cats don't have a lot of time to dwell on this loss as they are back at it on Saturday night as they travel to the nation's capital to take on the Washington Capitals. The former Southeast Division foes are now in the Metropolitan Division is 6-7-0 after Friday night's dominating 7-0 victory in Philadelphia as Joel Ward led the way with a hat trick. Possibly without their captain, Alex Ovechkin (injury earlier in the week), the Capitals had multi-point games from six different players against the Flyers. Florida has struggled in D.C., having lost their last seven straight in Washington.

Author: Glenn Odebralski |

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