Both teams took the ice and neither was really blowing the other away. It seemed as if the first few minutes of the game were played in slow motion. Florida blew a few good chances against Ilya Bryzgalov and likewise the Flyers on Jose Theodore.
At the eight minute mark, Shawn Matthias took two quick shots on Bryzgalov, one kicked aside and the second gloved to stop play.
Ed Jovanovski was called for roughing Jody Shelley in the 10th minute, and the Flyers would break the seal on the scoreboard directly, as Claude Giroux fed Scott Hartnell right in front of Theodore. Hartnell whiffed the puck, but Brayden Schenn (9) buried it for the 1-0 lead. Matt Carle earned the secondary assist on the play.
Claude Giroux was called for slashing at the 12 minute mark to give the Cats their first man advantage of the evening. Jason Garrison unleashed his howitzer against Bryzgalov, but the Flyers killed the penalty with four clears.
Matt Carle pushed Jack Skille into Bryzgalov at the 15-minute mark, sending all three crashing to the ice. Skille was slow getting up, but then dropped the gloves seconds later. Carle simply sat on Skille and the fight was halted. Roughing calls were called on Skille and Carle, and the Panthers enjoyed their second power play of the period. Florida never got set, and looked outmatched even though they outnumbered the Flyers as Philadelphia cleared the puck out of the zone five times.
According to www.powerscouthockey.com, the Panthers were 78% dominant in the period, but came up short where it really counted, on the scoreboard.
Hits: Panthers, 8-4 (Jerred Smithson led all skaters with three, while Zac Rinaldo collected two for the Flyers)
Blocked Shots: Flyers, 8-0 (Three skaters had two for Philadelphia)
Faceoffs: Panthers, 7-6 (Shawn Matthias won two of four for the Cats, Daniel Briere won two of five for the Flyers)
Shots on goal: Panthers, 11-10 (Matthias and Smithson had two each for Florida, Nicklas Grossman and Brandon Manning had two each for the Flyers)
Score: Flyers 1, Panthers 0