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Panther Fans Pack Iceplex For Intrasquad Scrimmage

Wednesday, 01.16.2013 / 11:00 PM ET / News
By Chrissy Parente  - FloridaPanthers.com
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Panther Fans Pack Iceplex For Intrasquad Scrimmage

With only five days from the start of training camp and the start of the regular season, the Panthers changed up their practice schedule and hosted a night scrimmage to prepare for the season.

Panther fans packed the Saveology.com Iceplex on Wednesday night to give those players a game-like atmosphere. It started from the get go as the packed Iceplex welcomed Panther players to the ice with loud cheers and applause.

“I think we accomplished everything we wanted to tonight,” said Panthers head coach Kevin Dineen. “We wanted to get a good feel for an evening game. We wanted to have a high tempo pace and fortunately for us, I think we had a very high turnout by a bunch of people that are excited to see hockey back.”

The first period had a couple of scoring chances on each side and saw chippy play but ended in a scoreless tie with both Jose Theodore and Scott Clemmensen starting off strong in goal.

“I felt really good,” said Theodore following the scrimmage. “It was fun to have a game, a real 15-minutes stop time kind of thing.”

A mid-game shootout then ensued as Team White netminder Theodore stopped all three shots including attempts by Stephen Weiss, Scottie Upshall and Kris Versteeg. Peter Mueller, Jonathan Huberdeau and Mike Santorelli all had better luck on Team Red goaltender Clemmensen as they all found the back of the net on several nice moves.

The second period saw back and forth action for both teams once again. Team Red got off to a good start with a few good shots on Clemmensen. However, Team White came back with a quality scoring chance from Mueller and a few good chances towards the end. The second period would also end in a scoreless tie as Theodore and Clemmensen made several in close stops.

“No matter what the score is out there, not much to read into it,” said Clemmensen. “But it’s fun to be back playing competively, very structured and everybody going all out again.”

“There was lot’s of chances,” said forward Tomas Kopecky. “I think the guys are trying to pass to each other more often in these scrimmages. This scrimmage, we have to treat it like it’s a game.”

During the second shootout, Tomas Fleischmann was stopped by Theodore as was Alex Kovalev by Clemmensen. Marek Svatos would be the first to score shooting top shelf on Clemmensen while Shawn Matthias came back for Team Red scoring with a nice move around Theodore. Final shooters Brian Campbell and Jack Skille were stopped so the shootout ended in a 1-1 tie.

A five-minute overtime once again ended in a scoreless tie although there were many scoring chances by both teams. After a second five-minute overtime, the score was still at 0-0, which is how the game would end.

“The intensity was there,” said Dineen. “I think we got a little tuckered out at the end. It’s exciting to see some guys returning that had some jump to them.”

The players ended the scrimmage in thanking fashion by going to center ice and giving a fan salute to the cheering fans.

While the goaltenders ruled the night, the Panthers did take some things away heading into the season opener on Saturday against Carolina.

“It’s a building process,” said Theodore. “It’s going to happen quick. Tonight you could see a lot of guys that wanted to push. For myself, I really wanted to try and approach like it’s a real game because normally you have three-four pre-season games to get your rhythm going.”

“When it comes to Saturday, all the teams are going to be gunning for every point,” said Kopecky. “We have to be ready and keep it more simple, especially from the beginning and the first couple of games.”

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 252 192 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 242 203 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 252 230 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 221 210 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 236 250 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 215 234 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 181 216 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 188 226 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Huberdeau 79 15 39 10 54
J. Jokinen 81 8 36 -2 44
N. Bjugstad 72 24 19 -7 43
A. Ekblad 81 12 27 12 39
B. Boyes 78 14 24 11 38
A. Barkov 71 16 20 -4 36
J. Hayes 72 19 16 -4 35
B. Campbell 82 3 24 4 27
B. Pirri 49 22 2 6 24
D. Bolland 53 6 17 4 23
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
R. Luongo 28 19 12 .921 2.35
A. Montoya 6 7 2 .892 3.01
 
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