The two underachieving interconference foes saw the puck drop on a night in south Florida when most everyone’s attention is focused on the Heatles and Vinsanity. Stephen Weiss set a record when the puck dropped by appearing in his 614th Florida game, passing Radek Dvorak. The game also saw three players join or rejoin the Panthers on the ice. The return of defenseman Ed Jovanovski, back from a broken hand, Michal Repik, called up from San Antonio, and Jon Matsumoto, also called up from the Rampage. Matsumoto is the recent trade return for Evgeny Dadonov going to the Carolina Hurricanes.
Darroll Powe beat Jose Theodore between the pads at the three minute mark, but Erik Gudbranson managed to keep it out of the net with some quick stickwork to keep the game scoreless.
At the 11 minute mark, Jovanovski was called for interference on Jed Ortmeyer along the right side in the Florida zone. The Wild have been converting 15% of their power plays this season, placing them near the back of the NHL in 23rd. The Panthers penalty kill is 22nd, at 81%. Sean Bergenheim kept the puck in the Wild zone, pretty much unassisted for about 20 seconds. Minnesota managed to get one shot on goal, but never threatened to break the seal on the scoreboard.
Kris Versteeg was called for holding Devin Setoguchi’s stick at the 17 minute mark for Minnesota’s second man advantage of the game. Florida again only allowed one shot on goal, as the Panthers displayed an efficient penalty kill.
Hits: Tied, 14-14 (Jack Skille collected five hits for the Panthers, while Cal Clutterbuck and Darroll Powe each had four for the Wild).
Blocked Shots: Wild, 5-3 (Nate Prosser had two for Minnesota).
Faceoffs: Panthers, 10-7 (Stephen Weiss won six of nine faceoff chances).
Shots on Goal: Tied, 11-11 (Dany Heatley and Sean Bergenheim each put three pucks on the opposing goal
Score: Panthers 0, Wild 0