The Panthers were coming off of a two game home win streak against two gritty teams, the Devils were coming off of two wins against the Tampa Bay Lightning. It was a battle royal down in Sunrise as the Panthers welcomed the New Jersey Ilya Kovalchuk’s. It was the first of four between these two teams this season with ex-Devils goalie Scott Clemmensen getting the start against his former team.
The Panthers started the game looking a little lethargic but responded well after Nick Palmieri scored first for the Devils. The Panthers soon responded back with goal from Dennis Wideman and then a dirty powerplay goal from Evgeny Dadonov to take the lead…a lead they would hold through the second period
Kovalchuk had 31 goals against the Cats while playing for the Thrashers and going into tonight he only had 12 goals the Panthers would struggle to keep him with 12 as they they forced the game to overtime and then won on a fantastic shot from Kulikov in the extra period.
Clemmensen said. “I did learn a lot from Martin while I was there. It’s always good to win no matter who you play, but it’s a unique opportunity to beat guys you are friends with.”
“We never make it easy on ourselves…” Panthers Head Coach Pete DeBoer said. “It was a good test for us… We had chances…It was more like a soccer game.”
The Panthers have now won three in a row at home…hopefully they can keep the streak going and bring more victories to us in this coming week!
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