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Panthers Wrap-Up: Jets 3, Panthers 2 (OT)

by Glenn Odebralski / Florida Panthers

1 2 3 OT T
Panthers 1 0 1 0 2
Jets 2 0 0 1 3
FLA - J. Huberdeau (12), S. Matthias (6)
WPG - A. Ladd (13), B. Wheeler (8), D. Byfuglien (4)

SUNRISE, Fla — Dustin Byfuglien scored with 40.5 seconds left in overtime and the Winnipeg Jets beat the Florida Panthers 3-2 on Friday night.

Byfuglien brought the puck across to the right circle and his wrist shot whistled past Jacob Markstrom..

"He made some really good saves but we played well and we fought back. It showed our character in the third period, we were playing responsible on the fore check and the defensive zone so that’s really one we’d like to have."

- Panthers forward Jack Skille.
1. One Shot: After the 7-1 loss the previous night where they allowed goals on the first two shots and four in total to the Capitals in the first 8:10 of the game, the Panthers didn't need a second slow start. It didn't happen though as Jacob Makrstrom allowed a goal he should have had on the Jets first shot of the game. Just like his goal allowed to Washington's John Erskine, Markstrom got a piece of the puck but it wasn't enough. This time, Jets captain Andrew Ladd took a shot from the slot and the puck handcuffed Markstrom between his body and blocker pad. The netminder didn't get enough of it as the puck trickled just past the goal line 2:35 into the game.

2. Late Momentum: The Jets would make it a two goal game as Blake Wheeler rushed up the ice, put on the breaks to let the defense back off and then ripped a shot top shelf past Markstrom with 2:12 left on the clock in the opening period. Looking like they would trail by two heading into the intermission, rookie Jonathan Huberdeau made it a one goal game once again as he jammed the puck Ondrej Pavelec with 12.9 seconds left on the clock just getting the puck past the goal line before it was cleared by a Jet for his 12th of the season. The Panthers used that late goal (along with a fight by Nolan Yonkman 25 seconds later) to give them some step into their game in the second period.

3. Only One Point: Despite that momentum, the goaltenders were on par in the middle stanza as they combined for 26 saves between them. Each had to come up with some big saves. In the third, it looked like more of the same as the Panthers kept coming at Pavelec in waves and were finally rewarded with 5:50 gone in the period. Jack Skille and Tomas Kopecky combined to intercept an attempt by the Jets to get out of the zone, Kopecky raced in on a two-on-one and fed Shawn Matthias. The forward waited out Pavelec and put it top shelf from a sharp angle to tie the score. Florida had their chances to take the lead, including a fourth power play of the evening with nine minutes remaining but Peter Mueller was robbed. The Jets starting netminder was strong in stopping 12 shots in the third. The teams earned the one point with a second to be decided in overtime. In a back-and-forth session, Florida and Winnipeg had their chances as they combined for eight shots. The last came as Jets defenseman Dustin Byfuglien fended off two Panthers skaters and put a low shot past Markstrom with 40.5 seconds left in the extra session. A tough way for Florida to lose considering how well they played in a bounce back effort from Thursday night.
Memorable twitter posts from the game.

@louisonofrio: And the #FlaPanthers break my heart again

@CollinHarris1: Hard fight by the @FlaPanthers #GoodGameBoys

@SportsGuyMark: Really? @FlaPanthers so frustrating. Sad. Sad. Sad.

@evilernie667: Damn you Byfuglien, damn you! #FlaPanthers

@EpicEpstein: #FlaPanthers have had 40 shots twice this season. Lost both.

Memorable fan posts from the game.

Daniel Dias Klein: No mental toughness. Always choking in overtime... this is embarrassing... have some respect for the fans that still show up.

Jason Marchant: damn. gotta stop going to OT. Better effort tonight. Jets goalie was damn good tonight

Thomas Ouillette: Why do I bother watching OT? Too good effort tonight to lose like that.

Aaron Hicks: Tough loss, but nice to see Matthias get another point, really taking advantage of his oppertunity

Matthew Johnson: Much better then a 7-1 stomping. if not for pavalec that was a different game.

1. For the second straight game, Jacob Markstrom would have liked to have the first shot back as Andrew Ladd's shot from the slot handcuffed him and just crossed the goal line. Markstrom allowed John Erskine to score on Washington's first shot as well, one he should have easily made.

4. Getting the Panthers on the board, Jonathan Huberdeau recorded his fourth goal of the season against Winnipeg, having scored in each of those games. Tying the game at two, Shawn Matthias picked up his fourth point in the last five games (three goals).

6. The number six was a high in two categories for the Panthers. Forward Peter Mueller finished with a team-high six shots on the night while defensemen Tyson Strachan and Erik Gudbranson shared the team lead in hits on the night with that same amount.

12. The Panthers had the shot category in a large amount as they outshot the Jets by 12 overall. They posted 11 shots in the first, 14 in the second, 12 more in the third and three in overtime only to be denied by Ondrej Pavelec.

12.9. There wasn't much time on the clock in the first period when Jonathan Huberdeau struck for his 12th of the season, just 12.9 seconds to be exact.

Ondrej Pavelec
Was tested early and often as he stymied the Panthers on several occasions, especially stellar chances by the Kid Line.

40 Shots, 38 Saves, .950 SV%
Florida will look to get back in the win column on Sunday as they take on the Eastern Conference's best team, the Montreal Canadiens. The Habs have gotten off to a great start this season, having gone 15-5-4 in their first 24 games for 34 points. Two of those victories have come at the hands of the Panthers, having won 4-1 on Jan. 22 in Montreal and a 1-0 overtime victory on Feb. 14. Montreal is led offensively by Max Pacioretty who has 20 points (8-12-20) in 20 games while goaltender Carey Price owns a 12-4-3 record with a 2.33 GAA and a .912 save percentage.

Author: Glenn Odebralski |

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