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Panthers Wrap-Up: Jets 5, Panthers 2

by Glenn Odebralski / Florida Panthers

1 2 3 OT T
Panthers 1 1 0 0 2
Jets 3 2 0 0 5
FLA - S. Matthias (6),  N. Bjugstad (7)
WPG - J. Trouba (2), PPG - T. Enstrom (3), PPG - B. Wheeler (12), E. Kane (9), M. Frolik (9)

WINNIPEG —  ( - The Winnipeg Jets ended the Florida Panthers' five game-winning streak with a 5-2 victory Friday night at MTS Centre, and in the process put an end to their own lengthy winless drought at home.

Two power-play goals by Tobias Enstrom and Blake Wheeler 33 seconds apart in the first period broke open a 1-1 game that saw Winnipeg hold leads of 4-1 and 5-2 by the end of the second period.

"This was tough. We all go through it. It was our back-to-back, getting in at three in the morning but no excuses. We just try to do our best, learn from this situation, stay out of the box early in the game, try to stay focused, try to keep the games close, wait for a bounce, wait for an opportunity and take advantage. They came out in the first and basically won the game in the first period.."

- Panthers head coach Peter Horachek
1. Chippy First: The first period of Friday night's game had it all. A lot of back-and-forth play, four goals, a fight and 11 penalties called. Playing their second straight night, the Cats struck first thanks to Shawn Matthias 7:45 in but the Jets responded in a big way with some luck and the power play. Before that, Krys Barch and Chris Thorburn dropped the gloves less than three minutes in and that was just the start of the parade to the penalty box. Penalties gave the Panthers and Jets a 3-on-3 and then 4-on-4 opportunity and the Jets tied it as Jacob Trouba's shot was redirected in off the stick of Panthers blueliner Tom Gilbert. Winnipeg then used the power play scoring on a 5-on-3 power play and then 5-on-4 33 seconds later on a bomb from Tobias Enstrom and redirect by Blake Wheeler on Zach Bogosian's point shot. All-in-all the teams combined for 11 penalties, four power plays and 22 shots.

2. A Little Bit Further: It was only one period of play so the Cats has plenty of time to come back but the Jets scored on the rush just 1:03 into the second as Evander Kane went top shelf on Jacob Markstrom off the feed from former Panther Michael Frolik. Florida would get the game to within one on a great play by center Nick Bjugstad as he intercepted an errant pass by Kane in the Jets zone, made a move around the defenseman and fired a shot top shelf less than five minutes later. They almost made it a one-goal game as Tomas Fleischmann found Marcel Goc with Ondrej Pavelec out of position but the center rang it off the cross bar from a sharp angle. That was a huge miss, especially with Frolik giving the Jets a three-goal lead with 2:07 to play in the period off the rebound into the wide open net.

3. Coming To An End: Trailing by three, the Jets played a good defensive third, keeping the Panthers from getting any great chances as they picked up the victory. The loss ends a five-game winning streak and is their second loss in the last nine games. Both losses have come in the second game of back-to-back situations. In both cases, it just seemed that something was a little off in the crispness of the passes and the play on both ends of the rink. The penalty troubles certainly didn't help as the power play goals gave the Jets a stranglehold on a chippy first. Home calls and the Panthers return home where they'll look to continue their strong play in front of the home crowd.
Memorable twitter posts from the game.

@DavidDwork: The challenge for the @FlaPanthers now is to continue their great play when they return back home.

@MiamiSportsNet: @FlaPanthers Still playing very strong right now. 3-1 Canadian road trip, seven wins in last nine games, this team is much improved!

@lefthookpro: @FlaPanthers I'll take another 5 game win streak, doable. Start with tampa

Memorable fan posts from the game.

Rich Bedford: Still a great road trip.

Maria S. Troconis: It's okay guys.... We will win the next game :0). Goooo Panthers!!!

Kira Brooks: Good game'll WIN WIN WIN back home!!!

2. The Panthers got goals from Shawn Matthais and Nick Bjugstad for their sixth and seventh goals of the season. Both came of the unassisted variety.

5. Winnipeg got a balanced attack Friday night as five different players scored and 10 different skaters recorded points. Five of them had multi-point games with Jacob Trouba, Evander Kane and Michael Frolik scored a goal and added an assist while Mark Scheifele and Dustin Byfuglien posted two assists in the win.

5. You can't win them all. The Panthers season-long five-game winning streak came to an end with a 5-2 loss to the Jets. The winning streak was the longest since March, 2012.

11. The Panthers and Jets combined for 16 penalties in the game. 11 of them came in the opening 20 minutes with two fighting majors and nine minors.

33. A tied game in the first quickly became a two-goal deficit thanks to power play goals 33 seconds apart from Tobias Enstrom and Zach Bogosian scored power play goals for a 3-1 Jets lead.

Evander Kane
Was heavily involved in the game both good and bad but scoring the fourth goal of the game early in the second was too much for Panthers to recover from.

1 Goal, 1 Assist, 2 Points, 4 Shots, 6 Hits, 17:00 TOI
The Panthers return home for the holidays as they'll be home through Jan. 4th. They'll play five times at the BB&T Center over that span and it all begins with a Governor's Cup battle against their cross-state rival Tampa Bay Lightning Monday night. Tampa Bay has been strong all season, despite going without superstar Steven Stamkos for a large chunk of time due to a broken leg. The Lightning are just three points behind the Boston Bruins for the top spot in the Atlantic Division, posting a 21-11-3 record for 45 points, going into Saturday night's contest against the Carolina Hurricanes. The Bolts are led offensively by captain Martin St Louis (33 points in 35 games) while newcomer Valtteri Filppula has added 24 points in 35 games. Netminder Ben Bishop has seen the majority of time in net, posting an 18-5-2 record with a 1.96 GAA and .934 save percentage. 

Author: Glenn Odebralski |

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