The Panthers spent most of the first three minutes in the Hurricanes zone, but were unable to get set up. Carolina got some pressure on the Florida net, testing Jose Theodore with three shots inside a minute, but the goaltender was equal to the test.
Stephen Weiss beat Eric Staal on a faceoff, and Fleischmann immediately slapped it just wide of the net. Weiss was called for high sticking Jamie McBain on the play. The resultant power play saw the Hurricanes get one shot on net while the Panthers managed to clear the puck four times.
The Hurricanes outshot the Panthers nine to one in the first nine minutes of the second period, but the game remained tied at one.
Matt Bradley and Erik Gudbranson each got a shot on goal inside five seconds, but Cam Ward stopped them both cold.
Chad LaRose stole a clearing attempt by Florida’s leading goal scorer Kris Versteeg and put it over Theodore’s right shoulder for his ninth goal of the season, unassisted for a 2-1 lead with six minutes left in the second period.
Hits: Panthers, 20-14
Blocked Shots: Panthers, 13-7
Faceoffs: Hurricanes, 27-14
Shots On Goal: Hurricanes, 22-12
Score: Hurricanes 2, Panthers 1