January is a grueling month with many long breaks in between games, but finally the Panthers were back in action after the All-Star break.
The Florida Panthers traveled to the Barclays Center to face the New York Islanders Tuesday night.
Keeping with the Boughner method and playing aggressive was apparent from the beginning.
Though their play mostly staying on the Islanders side of the line, game play still seemed lack luster from both teams.
The Panthers were keeping with the puck at around the half way point of the first and after a saved shot from McCann, both teams went into a face-off. That’s when the fun started, Sceviour won the face off, Pysyk rebounded and passed to Mike Matheson who made and impressive slinging shot from near the blue line and in for a goal. The puck was slung in so hard it flew out as fast as it went in causing a bit of confusion with the goal light going off and players seeing the puck out of the net. After a short review it was clear Matheson’s goal was good and gave the Panthers and early lead.
Now though I said the teams sluggish, that was only at first, at the time before the first goal the Panthers looked like how the top teams play. Great passing technique, staying with the puck, and shortening the opposing teams chances in shots and scoring.
The second period played out the same way.
After a great defensive steal from Dadonov he skated his way down the ice, swooped around the net and slid the puck in the net.
Now, as that was impressive itself the key to that play was Bjugstad cutting in between the Islanders goalie and Dadonov as he swept around the net, confusing the goalie into thinking Bjugstad had the puck leaving the net wide open.
A bickering 2nd period finally ended and another period started with the Panthers scoring first.
Panthers really did well controlling the puck, Huberdeau drawing Islander players away from Malgin who in turn passed to Yandle where his attempt was blocked but Trocheck immediately grabbing the rebound passing it back again to a wide-open Yandle who squeezed one in from the blue line.
With a solid 3-0 lead in the third the Panthers let up just a bit and only a minute later the Islanders got their first goal off Sateri.
Islanders tried catching up but was unable to, they went empty net late in the third but Huberdeau broke through and sealed the deal with a goal taking the score 4-1 with one minute to go in the game.
Impressive win by the Panthers, like I said they seemed like a team in the upper tiers of the standings tonight.
Sateri only playing minimal NHL games finally won his first game and nearly posted a shutout, saving 32 out of 33 shots.
Panthers defense definitely helped with Sateri’s success only allowing the Islanders to shoot 17 times in the first two periods. Still Sateri showed a lot more puck awareness after shot rebounds which led to a near shutout.
Florida Panthers are taking on the Buffalo Sabres Thursday night at the KeyBank Center, puck drops at 7:00 p.m.
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