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Florida Panthers Steve Bernier Appears OK After Cheap Shot ... Taken by Ambulance to Local Hospital

Bernier Florida Panthers winger Steve Bernier was alert and drinking bottled water as he was put into a Sunrise Fire & Rescue ambulance apparently headed to Cleveland Clinic in Weston.

Bernier had a nasty cut under his right eye as the Panthers fear he has a broken cheekbone.

Bernier was hit in the face by Minnesota's Brent Burns after play had ended in Florida's 2-1 win over the Wild at BankAtlantic Center. Burns took the last shot of the game and was shoved/checked by Bernier; Burns took exception, turned and popped Bernier in the face while holding his stick.

The first punch was a facewash with Burn's right hand. Then he slugged Bernier with his left -- hitting him square in the face with the business end of his stick. That's what did the damage.

“It's disrespect for the game,'' said Florida defenseman Mike Weaver. “Why do you need that? A player needs to respect another player.''

Said Burns: “I don’t know how it happened. I don’t know. It happened. I said sorry. I just saw he was bleeding there. I didn’t mean to do that. He just came at me, and I think it was my glove got him. I don’t know.''

Burns was given five minutes for fighting and a 10-minute game misconduct after the game. Cal Clutterbuck was also given five for fighting. Florida's Bryan Allen was charged for cross-checking.

Photo courtesy of Andy Slater/640 WFTL Sports

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Improving team.Burns should be given a suspension for that.What impressed me the most was the way the team played the last 10 minutes.They played lazy the 2nd period and for the first 10 minutes of the 3rd.They really stepped it up and last years and team would have lost in the last 3 minutes or in overtime.If we had a power play we could be a marginal playoff team this year.Higgins,Matthias,and Santorelli are improving every game.

I was impressed as well...the Panthers would have lost this game last year...probably in 2008-09 too...and we can keep going back a few more years

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