Florida will be visiting the Winnipeg Jets tonight at the MTS Center in Winnipeg. This is the third meeting this season of six between the two teams, and the second of three played in Manitoba. Florida is 10-10-4 on the road, while Winnipeg owns a 15-8-1 home record. For Florida, this is the third game of a difficult three game roadtrip. They dropped a matchup on Wednesday night to the Colorado Avalanche in overtime, 4-3, and dropped a 3-1 decision to the Chicago Blackhawks last night. They return home to face the Philadelphia Flyers just before the All-Star break. Winnipeg is finishing off a short two game homestand. They beat the free falling Buffalo Sabres, 4-1 on Thursday. They will go on to play eight of their next nine games on the road.
The teams last met on November 10th, 2011, with Florida posting a 5-2 win in Winnipeg. Kris Versteeg assisted on one goal, and scored on the power play, at even strength, and into an empty net for Florida's only hat trick so far this season. Jason Garrison and Mike Santorelli also lit the lamp for the Cats. Brian Campbell added three assists and Jose Theodore saved 25 of 27 shots for the win. Jets goaltender Ondrej Pavelec allowed four goals on only 15 shots in taking the loss.
Last night, the Panthers dropped 3-1 decision to the Blackhawks in Chicago. Jason Garrison scored his 13th goal of the season in the third period, but nothing else went very good for the Cats.
The Jets beat the Buffalo Sabres, 4-2 on Thursday night. Nik Antropov, Tobias Enstrom, Andrew Ladd and Tim Stapleton all scored for Winnipeg, and Ondrej Pavelec made 25 saves on 26 shots for the win.
Sabres @ Jets 01/19/12 (via NHLVideo)
Season Series: 1-0-1
All-Time Series: 27-29-14
Game Time: 7:00 EST
Florida Panthers: 21-15-10, 52 points, second Southeast Division, eighth Eastern Conference, 15th NHL, on pace for 93 points.
Winnipeg Jets: 22-20-5, 49 points, third Southeast Division, 10th Eastern Conference, 22nd NHL, on pace for 85 points.
Injuries: Ed Jovanovski broke his hand in a fight against the Boston Bruins on Monday. Marco Sturm has been skating but is not ready to join the team. Heir apparent goaltender Jacob Markstrom is likely out for the rest of the season.
1. Fleischmann - Weiss - Versteeg
2. Kopecky - Goc - Samuelsson
3. Upshall - Matthias - Skille
4. Bergenheim - Madden - Barch
1. Campbell - Garrison
2. Kulikov - Gudbranson
3. Ellerby - Weaver
Panthers defenseman Mike Weaver played 57 games over three seasons for the team when they were still based out of Atlanta. He tallied six assists with a minus-six rating and 30 penalty minutes.
Jets left winger Tanner Glass played 44 games for Florida over two seasons, scoring one goal and one assist with a minus-five rating and 46 penalty minutes.
Jets left winger Kenndal McArdle played 33 games over three seasons for the Panthers, scoring one goal and two assists with a minus-eight rating and 47 penalty minutes.
Goals: With one more goal, Jason Garrison will pass Brett McLean into 48th, with 21. Shawn Matthias' next goal will give him 24, moving him into a tie in 46th with Dave Gagner. Mike Santorelli will pass Mike Van Ryn into 44th with his 26th goal.
Assists: Dmitry Kulikov's next assist will give him 54 for his career, moving him into a tie with Martin Gelinas for 34th.
Points: One more point for Kulikov will give him 67, tying Bryan Allen in 44th place.
Kris Versteeg - 17
Tomas Fleischmann - 15
Jason Garrison - 13
Stephen Weiss - 12
Brian Campbell - 31
Stephen Weiss - 23
Kris Versteeg - 22
Dmitry Kulikov - 20
Kris Versteeg - 39
Stephen Weiss - 35
Tomas Fleischmann, Brian Campbell - 34
Stephen Weiss - plus-nine
Kris Versteeg - plus-seven
Jason Garrison - plus-four
Tomas Fleischmann - plus-one