The Florida Panthers were down 2-0 to the Seattle Kraken about midway through the 2nd period but scored three unanswered goals to take the 3-2 win.
Florida Panthers forward Nick Cousins had already been denied on a couple of high-danger scoring chances earlier in the game. Once in the first period, and again in the second, Cousins fired a high-quality wrist shot from the slot. Both times, Seattle Kraken goaltender Joey Daccord made the save.
Maybe it was a gift from the hockey gods that his third-period go-ahead goal would be gifted to him thanks to an uneven endboard behind the net. Josh Mahura dumped the puck into the offensive zone where the puck began to rim around the corner of the boards. Daccord left his net to get the puck and try to pass it off to a teammate. However, on his way to the wall, the puck appeared to change direction and skip back to the front of the net. Cousins was right there to slap it in and take a 3-2 lead with 5:52 left in the third period.
Cousins led Florida with five shots on goal. His goal was the third unanswered goal for the Panthers on Saturday. Earlier on, the Kraken had scored thanks to goals from Jared McCann in the first period and Eeli Tolvanen in the second.
A little over a minute after Tolvanen scored his goal halfway through the second, Gustav Forsling scored a power-play goal on a slapshot from the far slot. It was the Panthers’ first power-play goal this season scored by someone other than Sam Reinhart.
Gus with the heat!! 📈 pic.twitter.com/6FuNAwf4mn
— Florida Panthers (@FlaPanthers) October 29, 2023
Twelve seconds later, Matthew Tkachuk scored his first goal of the season when a slap shot from Dmitry Kulikov went off Tkachuk’s stick and butterflied into the goal. Tkachuk’s six games without a goal to start the season was his longest season-opening scoring drought of his eight-year career.
Sergei Bobrovsky made 30 saves, including one after getting knocked to the ground in the waning seconds of the game while Seattle had an extra attacker.
The Panthers went 3-1 on their first home stand of the season, and find themselves above .500 (4-3-0) for the first time in this young campaign.
- Anton Lundell and Eetu Luostarinen flipped lines in the last few shifts of the first period, with Lundell going to the second line and Luostarinen dropping to the third.
- Sam Bennett, out with a lower-body injury since the preseason, practiced in full on Thursday, left early on Friday, and skated prior to Saturday’s game, but did not play Saturday night.
- Per George Richards of Florida Hockey Now, Aaron Ekblad and Brandon Montour – who both suffered injuries during the Stanley Cup Playoffs – are planning on practicing Sunday in non-contact jerseys. He added that their window of return is around Thanksgiving. It was previously thought they’d return around mid-December.
Their next game is Monday, where they’ll return to Boston for the first time since winning Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals back in April.
📸 Credit: Florida Panthers