The Panthers took the ice in their alternate-home powder blue jerseys at 10 minutes past six in Sunrise. Stephen Weiss is playing in his Panther’s record tying 613th game for the Cats.
Mike Weaver continued an unfortunate trend for the Panthers, leaving them shorthanded just over a minute into the game when he was called for hooking Corey Perry. The Ducks managed two shots on Jose Theodore, but the Panthers killed it off by clearing the puck out four times over the two minutes.
Saku Koivu put the puck past Theodore with five minutes gone, but the netminder reached back with his stick and made a save that was better late than never.
Sean Bergenheim took the first shot of the game for Florida at the six minutes mark after the Panthers had allowed the first five shots of the game.
Luca Sbisa high sticked Stephen Weiss in the face at the seven minute mark. The resulting power play resulted in several good chances for the Cats, who collected four shots on goal and kept the puck in the Ducks zone for most of the first half of the two minutes.
Krys Barch and George Parros (and his all-world moustache) dropped the gloves at center ice for a lengthy bout. The two circled each other for over a minute tossing everything at each other. As the officials broke the two up, Parros gave Barch a wink as the two skated off to the penalty box for a five minute fighting penalty.
Teemu Selanne broke the scoreboard seal at the 12 minute mark with his 20th goal of the season. Saku Koivu and Bobby Ryan earned the assists. The marker moved Selanne into 11th on the all-time goals scored list, with his 657th goal overall.
Mikael Samuelsson was high sticked in the face by Lobomir Visnovsky, and was assessed a four minute double minor. The Ducks cleared out the puck four times in the first minute and a half, then allowed a shorthanded shot on goal. The Panthers could get nothing working, allowing a total of nine clears over the four minutes.
Toni Lydman was called for interfering with Jack Skille at the two minute mark to put Florida back on the man advantage. The Panthers again allowed Anaheim to get a few shorthanded opportunities and couldn’t set up a viable scoring opportunity.
Matt Bradley tried to body check Geroge Parros into the boards, but missed and klonked himself in the head. He was helped off the ice and did not return.
As for the rest of the Panthers, Shawn Matthias had a lot of jump in his step, as did Marcel Goc. It didn’t seem as if anybody had an answer for Jonas Hiller, however. Thankfully, Jose Theodore is keeping the Panthers close.
The Panthers were throwing everything at Anaheim to start the third period, Sean Bergenheim had a few good chances on goal, and led all skaters with six through the seven minute mark of the period.
The Ducks got a power play opportunity when Stephen Weiss tripped Ryan Getzlaf at the 11 minute mark. The Panthers had an odd man rush led by Tomas Kopecky, but the ref tripped him up. The Ducks didn’t get anything going.
The Cats pulled the goalie with just over a minute left in regulation, Niklas Hagman, ex-Panther, added an empty netter with 30 seconds remaining.
Hits: Tied, 24-24 (Keaton Ellerby led all skaters with five, while Toni Lydman had four for the Ducks.)
Blocked Shots: Ducks, 16-14 (Keaton Ellerby had an unreal six, including five in the third, while Luca Sbisa and Sheldon Brookbank had three each for Anaheim.)
Faceoffs: Panthers, 27-21 (Marcel Goc won 13 of 20, and Stephen Weiss won 8 of 15 for the Cats. Saku Koivu won nine of 16 for Anaheim.)
Shots on Goal: Panthers, 31-26 (Sean Bergenheim led all skaters with six, while Cory Perry paced the Ducks with four.)
Score: Ducks 2, Panthers 0