Game Recap

Cats Post Comeback Victory

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:48 AM

Florida Panthers

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Cats Post Comeback Victory
Vancouver Canucks 3, Florida Panthers 4
Florida Panthers' Nathan Horton (16) scores the winning goal against Vancouver Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo during the overtime shootout in their hockey game Friday, Feb. 1, 2008 in Sunrise, Fla. The Panthers won 4-3. (AP Photo/J. Pat Carter)
By Dave Joseph for

When it was finally over – after 60 minutes of regulation, an overtime punctuated by a penalty shot and then a shootout – Panther goalie Tomas Vokoun punched his glove into the air in celebration.
And Roberto Luongo slammed his stick across the Vancouver bench in frustration.

In a game that continually pulled 17,523 fans out of their seats with big hits and bigger goals, the Panthers came back three times – count ‘em, three times – from one goal deficits before beating Luongo and the Canucks in a shootout, 4-3.

And it seemed poetic justice that Nathan Horton score the only goal in the shootout. It was Horton who was forced to haul down Marcus Naslund with only :46.6 seconds in overtime when Naslund stole the puck at the blue line. But Vokoun stopped Naslund on a penalty shot and then all three Canucks in the shootout (Taylor Pyatt, Alexander Edler and Daniel Sedin). As for Horton, he beat Luongo to the stick side in the shootout to help the Panthers to what might be remembered as their biggest win of the year.

“In practice I used to shoot high on him,” said Horton, who had two goals. “I think maybe he thought I was going to go glove on him.”

Vokoun has now stopped 34 of 41 shots during shootouts. Horton has scored on three of eight shootouts.

It was a huge game for the Panthers, who climbed to within five points of first-place Carolina in the Southeast Division with a game in hand. The Panthers left immediately after the game for Tampa and Saturday’s game against the Lightning. The Panthers are 3-5-2 in the second of back-to-back games this season, and only 1-10-1 when playing on Saturday.

Game Highlights
Starting Lineups
 Panthers    Canucks
 H. Sedin
 D. Sedin
Post-Game Video
 Jacques Martin
 Nathan Horton
  Stephen Weis
  Bryan Allen
 Tomas Vokoun
 Panthers vs Canucks
Quote of the Game
"We have to enjoy the winning. If you enjoy it, you do everything you can to repeat the feeling. I think that's a good thing. It's nice to see the guys pumped up and play for one another."
-Goaltender Tomas Vokoun
Stat of the Game
The Panthers came back from not one, not two, but three times from one-goal deficits Friday night against the Canucks.
3 Stars
Presented by Szrio Jewelry
1. Nathan Horton
2. Stephen Weiss
3. Ruslan Salei
But maybe this is what the Panthers needed; a big win against a playoff-caliber opponent in front of an excited home crowd. That feeling seemed to spill over to the Panthers, who jumped over the bench and rushed Vokoun after the goalie stopped Daniel Sedin on the final shootout attempt.

“I think it was a physical game, a desperate game, and some people stepped up,” said GM and coach Jacques Martin.

“It was pretty exciting,” said defenseman Ruslan Salei, who had two big assists. “We got two big points, points we needed.”

And it was that kind of excitement the Panthers needed.

“We need to be more involved, more emotional,” said Vokoun, who stopped 29 shots in regulation. “It’s nice to see the guys get pumped up.”

Said defenseman Bryan Allen; “Hopefully, this shows us what it takes.”

On Friday evening, it was energy and determination.

The Canucks got the scoring started at 19:51 of the first period when Daniel Sedin scored on the power play. But at 5:03 of the second period, Horton wheeled out of the corner and, while David Booth tied up the Vancouver defenseman, beat Luongo through his pads to tie the game at one.

After Henrik Sedin beat Vokoun all alone from the slot at 13:03 of the second period, the Panthers once again came back to tie the game at two. This time, Olli Jokinen stopped a clearing pass around the Vancouver goal and found Jozef Stumpel all alone in front. Stumpel beat Luongo high to the stick side on the power play.

The Canucks took the lead one more time at 1:42 of the third on a pretty goal by Mason Raymond. But with 6:14 remaining in regulation, Salei and Steve Montador showed patient on the point during a power play, and as the power play was ending, Montador found Stephen Weiss in the right faceoff circle. Weiss stopped the puck, and then fired it over Luongo’s left shoulder to send the game into overtime and Horton’s winning goal.

“It’s a big team effort,” Horton said. “It’s nice to see everyone play as a team. We talked before the game. This is the big time of the year. We’ve had our struggles, individually and as a team, but we can’t let things slip away.”

Stephen Weiss won 18 of 24 faceoffs, or 75 percent…Magnus Johansson was a healthy scratch for the second game…Martin used Montador on the fourth line part of the evening with Kamil Kreps and Tanner Glass…
scoring summary
1st Period
PPG - Daniel Sedin (23) ASST: Henrik Sedin (43), Markus Naslund (23)
1 - 0 VAN
2nd Period
Nathan Horton (13) ASST: Stephen Weiss (21), Bryan Allen (8)
1 - 1 Tie
Henrik Sedin (11) ASST: Markus Naslund (24), Daniel Sedin (30)
2 - 1 VAN
PPG - Jozef Stumpel (7) ASST: Olli Jokinen (26), Ruslan Salei (16)
2 - 2 Tie
3rd Period
Mason Raymond (5) ASST: Matt Cooke (7), Jason Jaffray (4)
3 - 2 VAN
Stephen Weiss (10) ASST: Steve Montador (9), Ruslan Salei (17)
3 - 3 Tie
OT Period
1T. PyattN. Horton
2A. EdlerS. Weiss
3D. Sedin
penalty summary
1st Period
Jozef Stumpel  Tripping against  Ryan Kesler
Mike Brown  Interference against  Brett McLean
Jay Bouwmeester  Holding the stick against  Daniel Sedin
Jason Jaffray  Tripping against  Brett McLean
Matt Cooke  Tripping against  Stephen Weiss
David Booth  Interference against  Matt Cooke
2nd Period
Ryan Kesler  Interference on goalkeeper against  Tomas Vokoun
Olli Jokinen  Fighting (maj) against  Ryan Kesler
Ryan Kesler  Fighting (maj) against  Olli Jokinen
3rd Period
Branislav Mezei  Hooking against  Jeff Cowan
Aaron Miller  Cross checking against  David Booth
Daniel Sedin  Hooking against  Radek Dvorak
OT Period
goalie stats
Roberto Luongo
SA: 43TOI: 64:46
Saves: 40EV: 35 - 37
PIM: 0PP: 5 - 6
SV%: .930SH: 0 - 0
Tomas Vokoun
Tomas Vokoun
SA: 32TOI: 64:58
Saves: 29EV: 21 - 23
PIM: 0PP: 6 - 7
SV%: .906SH: 2 - 2