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Panthers Vs. Devils, 2012 NHL Playoffs Game 1: Cats Clawing Back, Pull Within 1

After falling behind by three goals in a disappointing start to the playoffs, the Florida Panthers stormed back in the second period and cut the New Jersey Devils lead to just one. It was a chippy period and the Cats dramatically stepped up the defensive effort, after allowing a whopping 26 shots in the first 20 minutes. The Devils put only six shots on goal in the second period, allowing Florida to get back in it.

Sean Bergenheim ended the Martin Brodeur shutout 7:44 into the second, taking a feed from Marcel Goc and getting the crowd back in it with a snipe. The Cats then took quick advantage of a power play after Stephen Gionta was sent to the box. Florida won the draw off the stoppage of play and Kris Versteeg went five-hole for the second goal of the game. There was bit of a scrum after the goal, leading to four-on-four play but the Cats would settle for two. They will come out of the second intermission with all the momentum after peppering Brodeur.

For more news, analysis, and discussion on the Panthers' playoff push, visit Litter Box Cats. For the opponent's perspective throughout the series, head over to In Lou We Trust. For all your hockey news and notes and more on each playoff series, keep up with SB Nation's dedicated NHL hub.

Photographs by, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.