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Panthers Wrap-Up: Red Wings 2, Panthers 1 (SO)

by Glenn Odebralski / Florida Panthers

1 2 3 OT SO T
Panthers 1 0 0 0 1-3 1
Red Wings 0 0 1 0 2-3 2
FLA - T. Fleischmann (26)
DET - J. Hudler (25), SO - J. Hudler
DETROIT (AP) - Jiri Hudler scored with 14:30 remaining in the third period and again in a shootout to help the Detroit Red Wings beat the Florida Panthers 2-1 on Sunday.

The Panthers did secure a point to move three ahead of second-place Washington in the Southeast Division with three games remaining..

"It reminds me of the Pittsburgh game where I thought we played a fairly complete game. We just have to find a way to keep on scratching and clawing."

- Head coach Kevin Dineen.
1. What A Goal: The Panthers and Red Wings came out trading punches in the first period at Joe Louis Arena. After more than 17 minutes of play, it was the Panthers striking first and what a goal it was. The Panthers, more specifically Kris Versteeg, raced up the ice with the puck. Versteeg, turned and found a trailing Stephen Weiss. Weiss returned the favor quickly in giving it back to Versteeg and the forward found a wide open Tomas Fleischmann across the ice for the one-timer. Fleischmann's team-leading 26th of the year gave Florida a 1-0 lead 17:38 into the game (VIEW GOAL) and that's how the Cats would end the period.

2. Great Scott: Panthers head coach Kevin Dineen called upon Scott Clemmensen for the start and the move paid off (for the most part). Clemmensen has been fantastic in his last three starts with each of them coming in tough buildings (Philadelphia, Montreal and Detroit). The Panthers netminder was one deflected goal away from pitching a shutout and it was another goal that came with some bad luck. Jiri Hudler threw a puck on net from outside the face-off circle and the puck deflected in past Clemmensen off of John Madden's skate 5:30 into the third period. Clemmensen was great the rest of regulation and overtime, turning aside 31 shots, including a diving stop back on a wide open Pavel Datsyuk in the second period (SEE SAVE).

3. One Big Point Closer: Deadlocked after sixty minutes of play and with no scoring in overtime, the game would be decided by the shootout. The Panthers came up just short as Pavel Datsyuk and Jiri Hudler scored for the Red Wings while Wojtek Wolski answered for the Panthers. Jimmy Howard denied Versteeg on the Panthers third attempt to take home two points. While it was only point gained, it was indeed just that, one point gained. The Panthers went into a tough Detroit building (six regulation losses at home) and went toe-to-toe with the Wings. Bouncing back from Friday's game in Columbus, Florida moved three points up on Washington for first in the division and five points up on Buffalo, putting them two points away from clinching a playoff spot.
Memorable twitter posts from the game.

@JimHardiman: I had to leave the room for the #FLAPanthers / #RedWings overtime. I knew how it would turn out but couldn't bear to watch. #BelieveRED

@BrianHedger: #FlaPanthers could at the very least clinch a playoff spot on Tuesday vs. Winnipeg.

@MetsPanthersFan: I feel good about the point at the Joe today. If things go right tomorrow in Tampa, our #flapanthers can clinch it Tuesday at the BAC!

@DanSpiegel: Although Versteeg failed to score again, his assist on Flash's goal and overall defense/backchecking were fantastic. #flapanthers #NHL

@Javs42: Hey @FlaPanthers, remember how you played today? Play the same way against Winnipeg and you'll clinch a spot. #FlaPanthers

Memorable fan posts from the game.

Derf Winsor: You have to win these games though.However a point is a point.

Eugene Berkovich: Still no scoring... Great effort, decent goaltending, excellent blue line corps. But no scoring! Where is this season's Ray Sheppard?

Kevin Doyle: Played like a bad high school team against Colombus the other night and then brilliantly against Detroit until the shootout.
Maybe playing to the level of your competition is a problem?

Michal Růžička: Damn, how many points we lost on SO ? :-(

Drew Hoyler: Great effort tonight, wish they would have brought the same intensity against the blue jackets..


4. It was Scott Clemmensen's third straight stellar start (all in visiting arenas) and he has allowed a combined four goals while turning aside 93 other shots (.959 save percentage).

5. Picking up the point against Detroit, Florida has collected points in their five games on April Fool's Day since the lockout (3-0-2).

11. While it's not the two points they wanted with the shootout loss, the Panthers have been good at picking up points lately, doing so in 11 of their last 13 games.

12. Getting the Panthers on the board late in the first period, Tomas Fleischmann netted his 26th of the season. The Flash now has 12 points (6-6-12) in his last 13 games for the Panthers.

500. A big congratulations goes out to defenseman Mike Weaver. For a guy that was undrafted due to his size (5'9), Weaver has made a solid NHL career out of it, suiting up in his 500th NHL game against the Red Wings.

Scott Clemmensen
While he didn't fair well in the shootout, Scott Clemmensen played extremely well the rest of the night in turning aside 31 Detroit shots

 32 Shots, 31 Saves, .969 SV%
Florida returns home for a Tuesday tilt against their Southeast Division foes, the Winnipeg Jets. The Panthers have had the edge in the season series, going 3-1-1 against the Jets but Winnipeg got the best of Florida in their latest meeting, a 7-0 whitewash in Winnipeg on March 1st. Florida can wrap-up a playoff spot with a victory or loss by Buffalo. Winnipeg last played on Saturday, falling 3-2 in overtime in Tampa Bay. The Jets were eliminated from playoff consideration due to the loss coupled with Washington's victory. Winnipeg is lef offensively by Blake Wheeler (61 points in 77 games) and Evander Kane (55 points in 71 games). In goal, Ondrej Pavelec has a 28-28-8 record with a .907 save percentage and a 2.88 goals against average.

Author: Glenn Odebralski |

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