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Panthers Wrap-Up: Panthers 6, Jets 3

by Glenn Odebralski / Florida Panthers

1 2 3 OT T
Panthers 0 1 5 0 6
Jets 0 1 2 0 3
FLA - PP - B. Campbell (3), K. Versteeg (1), PP - P. Mueller (3), PP - A. Kovalev (2), J. Huberdeau (2), T. Kopecky (2)
WPG - G. Clitsome (1), O. Jokinen (2), T. Enstrom (1)

SUNRISE, Fla ( — The Florida Panthers broke out of their scoring slump in a big way.

Alex Kovalev scored the go-ahead goal during Florida's five-goal outburst in the third period, helping the Panthers rally for a 6-3 victory over the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday night.

"There was a difference for me tonight. You get down a goal and you keep bouncing back, get down again. We had a few kick in the tails in the last ten days and that was the identity we were trying to build on. To see us come back like that with the gas pedal down, and confident play by our defense taking away a lot of space that they didn’t have room to skate. I think that was a big difference."

- Head Coach Kevin Dineen.
1. Throw It At The Net: The Panthers came out firing against the Jets as the offense looked to get on track. Struggling to find the goals in the last five games, the Panthers took the term throw it at the net as they posted a season-high 16 shots in one period. They made Jets netminder Ondrej Pavelec work for it as he had to make some difficult saves with the Cats buzzing around the crease. Rookie center Drew Shore continued some solid play as he posted a period high three shots while 11 skaters posted shot counts in the opening 20.

2. A Power Play Start: Getting their second power play of the night in the second period thanks to a double-minor for high sticking by Zach Redmond on Jonathan Huberdeau and then a delay of game by Mark Stuart, the Panthers got the scoring started off some hard work. Forward Tomas Kopecky laid a perfect screen after passing it to Tomas Fleischmann who then found Brian Campbell at the point for the defenseman's third power play goal of the season. The blueliner fired a shot that went past the screening Kopecky and past Pavelec 5:14 into the second. That was a good way of getting on the board, with hard work.

3. Flood Gates Open: With Winnipeg tying the game heading into the third, the offensive flood gates flew wide open. It started 1:23 in as former Panther Olli Jokinen scored from the slot for the Jets first lead. After Jet killer (12 points in six games dating back to last season) Kris Versteeg tied the game two minutes later, the Jets took their final lead of the game. Tobias Enstrom scored with a high shot on Jose Theodore for a 3-2 lead. Then the Panthers used the power play to tie and take the lead. First it was Peter Mueller scoring on the rebound, giving him a goal in three straight games and then Alex Kovalev scored with a pin point shot 1:17 later, with 7:23 left to play. Huberdeau bumped up the lead with 4:31 to play on a 2-on-1 rush with Jack Skille and Kopecky iced it with an empty netter. For a team that was searching for offense, they certainly found it with hard work and gritty play. Hopefully that will help propel them in their upcoming road trip.
Memorable twitter posts from the game.

@_DaraRoss: Great game by the @FlaPanthers tonight!!! 60 min game, 6 goals, an @ScottieUpshall fight and a win! #GetItOn #LetsGoPanthers #RedRising

@darketernaldays: Going to sleep with a super sweet victory for the @FlaPanthers boys are finally starting to get it together #Letthegoodtimesroll #gopanthers

@getbeautysleep: Must be a good luck charm for the @FlaPanthers! I was at the game and we won again! #win #boojets #letsgopanthers #weseered

@TaraBird16: 5 goals in the last period, I swear @FlaPanthers just like to keep us in suspense..

@StevenMS26: Heading home from an entertaining @FlaPanthers 6-3 victory over Winnipeg. #Kovalev can still snipe with the best of them.

Memorable fan posts from the game.

Ari Mendelsohn: Finally! Lets go Cats!!!! Great win tonight let's keep it up!

Thomas Ouillette: Hard hat and lunch pail hockey. Much better Cats!

Chris Corradino: That game my spirits a boost. Go Cats!

Tj Gardungle: What a hard fought game. We need this. Comeback cats like we know best. Where we at panthers nation!

Tino Perez: Well earned that's a great win, this how they should be playing

3. The Panthers recorded three power play goals for the second time this season. They also fkilled off all three Jets power plays. Continuing on with the number three, Peter Mueller recorded a goal in his third consecutive game while Tomas Fleischmann recorded a career-high three assists in the contest.

5. Florida's offense came awake as they scored five of the seven goals in the third period. That total was one more than the season high going into the game (four in the first against Carolina) and one away from the franchise record of six (scored in Boston in the on Apr. 5, 2000). 

10. The Panthers got production from almost half the team as 10 skaters picked up points. They were led by Fleischmann's three points and Kris Versteeg's (1-1-2) and Kopecky's (1-2-2) two point nights.

16. The Panthers recorded a season-high 16 shots on net in the opening 20 minutes. That was one more than the 15 they posted in the third period in Ottawa on Jan. 21. 11 different skaters recorded shots, led by Drew Shore's three.

58. Florida continues it's dominance in the face-off circle as they won 58% of the face-offs against the Jets. Jerred Smithson won 67% (6-of-9), Drew Shore won 64% (7-of-11), Marcel Goc won 56% (9-of-16) and Tomas Kopecky won 60% (3-of-5).

Tomas Fleischmann
Was busy in setting up half of the Panthers goals, which helped set a new career high. The best part of it? All three helpers were the first assist on the play. His TOI was second most among forwards.

 3 Assists, 3 Points, 4 Shots, -2, 20:24 TOI
The Panthers will have to pack a suit case for two shortly. After two days off, Florida will hit the road for four straight games, covering a week's span. They'll head to Buffalo before taking on the Jets, Philadelphia and Washington. The trip all starts with a game on Super Bowl Sunday. A special 3pm start will see the Cats and Sabres drop the puck. The Sabres, who won 7-4 on Thursday night to Boston, are led offensively by big play men Thomas Vanek (6-9-15 in six games) and captain Jason Pominville (5-7-12 in seven games). Ryan Miller has seen the lion's share between the pipes, posting a 2.64 and a .920 save percentage while posting a 3-2-1 record.

Author: Glenn Odebralski |

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