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Panthers Wrap-Up: Sabres 4, Panthers 3 (SO)

by Glenn Odebralski / Florida Panthers

1 2 3 OT SO T
Panthers 2 0 1 0 0-2 2
sabres 3 0 0 0 2-2 3
FLA - PP- D. Shore (2), M. Goc (2), B. Campbell (6)
BUF - N. Gerbe (1), PP - T. Ennis (7), N. Gerbe (2), SO - T. Vanek

SUNRISE, Fla — Thomas Vanek and Jason Pominville scored in the shootout as the Buffalo Sabres defeated the Florida Panthers 4-3 Thursday night at BB&T Center.

Pominville clinched the victory in the second round after Buffalo goalie Ryan Miller stopped Jonathan Huberdeau and Peter Mueller.


"You don't end up with two points so that's unfortunate. At the end of it, we feel if we play that way and keep moving in that direction that that's a sign that we're heading in the right direction."

- Panthers head coach Kevin Dineen.
1. 10 Minutes Of Offense: Seeming to carry over from Tuesday night's 10 goal outburst, the Panthers and Sabres got the offense starting early in the first period and combined to score five goals in a little over a 10 minute span. Buffalo had the early success as they jumped out to an early 2-0 lead. First it was Nathan Gerbe getting them on a board with what seemed to be a change up on their first shot of the game 6:30 in. The power play gave them a two-goal advantage as Tyle Ennis scored on the rebound at the 11 minute mark. Florida would fight back with two goals within a minute span. First it was Drew Shore scoring from outside the crease on a rebound with the back hand. Then Marcel Goc did some grit work behind the net to steel the puck and beat Ryan Miller as he worked his way out to the friend of the night, tying the game at two with 4:40 to play in the first. The tie didn't last long as Gerbe scored his second 1:26 later, scoring short side high on the rush to chase Scott Clemmensen.

2. Pressure And Tying The Game: The offenses slowed down in the second and third but it wasn't for a lack of shots. Florida, in fact ramped up the offensive pressure in the final 40 minutes and for the longest time couldn't find the equalizer. They posted 16 shots in the second period and another 14. The teams lined up for a face-off deep in the Buffalo zone with 1:30 to play. Goc took the draw and won in cleanly back to Brian Campbell. The defenseman then one-timed a rocket top shelf to tie the game with 1:26 left on the clock. The teams then finished off the end of regulation and Florida earned a valuable point, looking for a second.

3. Taking Away Half: After tying the score late, Florida kept up the pressure on the Sabres as both Jonathan Huberdeau and Shore had a golden chance to win it on one rush but the puck just going through the crease and past the stick. That was one of several quality scoring chances on Miller as finished with four saves in the five minute period. Overtime, however, decided nothing and so it was on to a shootout. Florida had to feel good about their chances after winning their first shootout of the season in Philadelphia and having Huberdeau and Peter Mueller up as their first two shooters. The rookie, however lost the puck off his stick off his move and Mueller was stopped by Miller's glove. It didn't get to a third shooter as Thomas Vanek and Jason Pominville both beat Theodore to secure the two points. With the way the Panthers played against Buffalo, they should have deserved a better fate (season high 43 shots) but to fight back like that and pick up a point can definitely go a long way. That's two solid efforts and if they can shore up the goaltending, they can certainly get back into it.
Memorable twitter posts from the game.

@_xoalejandra: First Hockey Game Today, @FlaPanthers didn't disappoint! Can't wait 'till next week

@nikki_getz: even though they lost, that was a good game @FlaPanthers

@NASCARNAC: Sorry to see the @FlaPanthers lose like that, they played hard #NHL

@KyleSwain32: Keep your heads up. You guys played absolute amazing tonight. Dominated the game. @FlaPanthers looking better and better

@twintell2: well played @FlaPanthers. we still picked up a point

Memorable fan posts from the game.

Jeff Main: Miller was the deciding factor tonight against our Panthers. Tough loss, hell of an effort though to tie it up late in the 3rd.

Andy Amstutz: I'm glad to get the comeback point, but we should have won that game. Clemmer has got to be better.

Aaron Hicks: With the way Miller played all game, beating him in the Shoot Out was going to be tough, least we took a point, big weekend against the Canes

Margie Hernandez: Shootout again!!! at least there's a point.

Kevin Serpa: We win both games vs. Carolina, BOOM: first place Panthers/td>

2. Florida found themselves trailing by two 11 minutes into the game but tied it up quickly off the second of the season for Drew Shore and Marcel Goc. The goals came 56 seconds apart.

6. Tying the game with 86 seconds remaining in regulation, Brian Campbell recorded his sixth goal of the season. It was his first non power play tally but the marker now has him tied among all NHL defensemen atop the goal scoring race (with Ottawa's Erik Karlsson).

8. Shore has picked up the scoring department. With his first power play goal, the rookie has now registered eight points (2-6-8) in his last nine games played..

9. Buffalo got their first power play of the game 10:51 into the first and it didn't take them long to go up 2-0 as Tyle Ennis scored nine seconds following the call, scoring off the rebound from the side of the net.

43. The Panthers registered a season high 43 shots on net (six more than the previous high). Rookie Jonathan Huberdeau finished with an individual season high eight shots while Jack Skille also had a season high six shots on the night.

Nathan Gerbe
Recorded his first two goals of the season off two nice shots in the first period, including one that would have stood as the game-winner had it not been for Campbell's heroics.

2 Goals, 2 Points, 3 Shots, +2, 17:27 TOI
It's a big weekend ahead as their will be four point swings in two games against the Division leading Carolina Hurricanes as the two teams play a home-and-home series. The first game, in Raleigh, takes place Saturday night. Florida won the first game of the season series back on Opening Night by a 5-1 final. Carolina had a big win on Thursday night, defeating Pittsburgh 4-1 in Raleigh to move to 21 points on the season, four points ahead of the Panthers.

Author: Glenn Odebralski |

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