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Panthers fall to Lightning in physical rematch
Panthers fall to Lightning in physical rematch
Jun 18, 2024 11:42 AM

At the end of the first period, the Florida Panthers were probably at least satisfied with their performance. They were scoreless, but so were the reigning Stanley Cup champions, the Tampa Bay Lightning.

At the end of the second, the Panthers were down 4-0 en route to a demoralizing 6-1 loss on Saturday night at the BB&T Center.

The Lightning suffered an embarrassing 5-2 loss on Thursday night to the Panthers, their Central Division rivals. Apparently, they had had enough. Even without captain Steven Stamkos, Tampa was able to put together a litany of scoring chances in the second period that Panthers goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky was simply unable to stop. Conversely, the Cats couldn’t find a way to get past Andrei Vasilevskiy, who totaled 33 total saves for a .971 save percentage.

The lone Panthers goal of the night came in the third period when Brett Connolly and Frank Vatrano teamed up to slide one past Andrei Vasilevskiy. But the celebration was short-lived. Less than a minute later Tampa’s Alexander Volkov scored the Lightning’s fifth of the night, effectively squashing any desperate hopes at an unlikely but not completely impossible comeback for Florida.

“We lost our composure when they got ahead,” head coach Joel Quenville said. “The game just got away from us.”

Both Radko Gudas and Patric Hornqvist made their own attempts to turn the tide by dropping gloves with Blake Coleman and Yanni Gourde respectively but all efforts fell short. MacKenzie Weegar also scuffled with Killorn late in the first and the two exchanged words even after moving to the box.

The loss keeps the Panthers (8-2-2) at the second position in the Central Division behind the Lightning (10-2-1). They play the third game of the series in Tampa Bay on Monday.

Previous Article:Panthers win an afterthought after injury to Aaron Ekblad Next Article:Florida Panthers: Defense will need to be on their toes against Toronto
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