« Happy Thanksgiving: Florida Panthers Close, Not Good Enough ... Steve Bernier Skates ... Bill Thomas Returned | Main | Florida Panthers Rally in Tampa, Beat Lightning 4-3 ... First OT Game, Shootout Win of 2010-11 ... Power Play Stats! »

Panthers Have a Sawgrass Black Friday: Lundqvist Stops 40, Leads Rangers 3-0

RANGERS 3, PANTHERS 0

BY GEORGE RICHARDS
grichards@MiamiHerald.com

The Panthers have a few rules.

Don't walk on the carpeted logo in the middle of the dressing room. Players are fined if their jersey touches the floor.

'Don't talk about the power play' could be next.

Yes, the Panthers again failed to score a goal with a man advantage on Friday night and it cost them -- again -- as they didn't convert on five power play chances in a 3-0 loss to the Rangers in front of a lively 17,013 at BankAtlantic Center.

Florida went 0-3 during its holiday homestand after starting the season 5-2-0 in Sunrise.

“You best players have to be your best players,'' coach Pete DeBoer said, “and in all three games, we had trouble scoring. Our best players didn't get on the board and we were out-goaltended in all three. It's tough to win games when that happens.''

Not only have the Panthers not scored a power play goal since Nov. 10, their opponents are now scoring when Florida has been on the advantage. Brandon Prust's goal late in the third was the second time in as many games an opponent has scored shorthanded on the Panthers. Florida, prior to Wednesday's game against the Bruins, had given up just one shorthanded goal this season.

The Panthers, meanwhile, haven't scored in 33 consecutive power play chances.

With the Sawgrass Mills packed to the gills across the street, the Panthers had a Black Friday of their own as Rangers backstop Henrik Lundqvist had his way with Florida once more. Lundqvist has beaten the Panthers in 11 of his 17 starts against them, earning his fourth shutout against the Cats.

In those 17 games, Lundqvist has given up just 30 goals (1.76 per) and has made saves on 494 of 524 shots (94 percent).

The Panthers, who have lost three straight for the first time this season, came at Lundqvist hard throughout the game and took 21 more shots (40-19) than the Rangers.

Only Lundqvist was on – and his teammates took advantage of their scoring opportunities.

“He's a top three goalie in the league,'' said Chris Higgins, who played with Lundqvist last season. “One thing I respected was seeing him in practice every day. It's not a shock he played that well; I wish he was off his game a little though.''

Moments after the Panthers failed to score on a four-minute Sean Avery penalty -- Dmitry Kulikov's hooking penalty in the middle sure didn't help -- the Rangers pounced as Derek Stepan buried a rebound that Scott Clemmensen failed to secure.

The Panthers trailed 1-0 from that point in the opening period until early in the third when the Rangers power play unit showed their hosts how it's done. With 13 seconds left in a Stephen Weiss holding penalty, Erik Christensen fed Ryan Callahan in the slot. Callahan's nifty backhanded deflection beat Clemmensen to give the Rangers some breathing room against the offensively-challenged Panthers.

Florida hasn't been good to bouncing back from late deficits this season and dropped to 0-7 when trailing going into the third period.

Lundqvist did have some work to do against the Panthers as he stopped a point-blank shot from Mike Santorelli in the second and also stoned Shawn Matthias. In the third, it appeared the Panthers had cut the deficit to one, only Weiss knocked down the puck during a scrum in front of the net and was charged with a hand pass. Higgins, a New York native, battled to knock the loose puck past Lundqvist – but Weiss' glove work negated Higgins' perseverance.

“Usually they wave those off when it hits the other guy [Lundqvist], but they said he needed full control,'' Higgins said. “It doesn't seem like we get too many calls to begin with. This week is no exception.''

THIS, THAT

Winger Bill Thomas got to experience the fun of Thanksgiving travel twice as he was sent back to the Panthers AHL affiliate in Rochester, N.Y., on Thursday – only to be recalled on Friday.

Thomas was brought back as a precaution as DeBoer said the Panthers had some banged-up forwards who might need a rest either on Friday or Saturday. Thomas was not used in Friday's game.

SATURDAY: PANTHERS AT LIGHTNING
When/Where: 7:30 p.m.; St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa
TV/Radio: No local TV; WQAM-560
The series: Panthers lead 50-33-10
The game: Tampa Bay had a five-game winning streak snapped with a 6-0 loss at Washington on Friday. The Lightning are 4-2-0 in the second game of a back-to-back set. .-.-. The Panthers, who won the previous meeting 6-0 against Tampa in Sunrise on Oct. 16, are 0-4 in the second game of a two-game set. The Panthers played host to the Rangers on Friday. .-.-. Steven Stamkos, who has 21 goals in 23 games this season, has six goals in 12 games against Florida.

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

I know we are beating a dead horse, but this Power Play has to be the worse ever!!!! Even a bad one will get a bounce once and a while.........

What is the league record for longest without a PP Goal?

Maybe this long trip to the West Coast is what this team needs.........along with a couple of new coaches!

Fire Hulton!!!!!!!

Not to mention that our lack of power play goals has also been compounded with at least two short hand goals that I recall. Sick.

DeBoer blames last nights power play on trading Pavel Bure to the Rangers, when you trade a finisher you need to get something more than a bag of pucks in return.

Tomorrow against Tampa DeBoer will blame the Viktor Koslov trade (traded 1st round pick to San Jose for Koslov, San Jose trades the pick to Tampa who pick Vinny LaCavlier).

We are now 25th in the league in goal scoring, 30th on the power play and 26 overall.

we have scored 2 or less goals in 12 games and 3 or more in 9 games, the 2 or less we are 2-10 and the 3 or more we are 7-2.

Time for Tallon to move forward and realize we are not going anywhere with this group of forwards, we don't have a finisher among the group.

While we have worked hard, we continue to get the results of a team playing with less talent then the other teams.

Now we get to play some more offensive teams which will drive home the point that the new NHL is about scoring goals.

Also, please get rid of those ugly blue uniforms and bring back panther pride with the red uniforms and the great logo (the logo on the blue jerseys looks more like a baby cub and they look more like pee wee hockey jerseys then NHL jerseys)

The Jerseys fit the team. They do not play like Panthers, they play like Cubs!!

Weiss on the point during the power play is a futile move. Thanks to his cross ice pass that was intercepted, a goal was scored.

Someone must realize that this player isn't even a shadow of what the organization thinks he is. If anyone should be moved it should be him. Weiss is absolutely worthless.

I'm with the rest of the board.. why is Weiss playing the point on the PP? Where is the leadership on this team? They had a closed door meeting and what we got out of that was the play against the Rangers. SAD.

Tonight they take on TB, who were smoked by the Caps 6-0, they should expect to be manhandled by the Bolts tonight. I'm predicting another loss as I don't think the guys have the confidence in themselves any more to put the puck in the net. That would make it 4 in a row.

How many losses in a row will it take for PDB & Fulton to be out of a job? I'm guessing a win less road trip will do the trick, so when the Panthers play Colorado at home it will be under someone else's coaching.

We can't trade all or any of the players right now. A coaching change is the only thing that can be done. However that would mean paying the coaches we fire. A team that doesn't have a lot of money to spend has a huge decision to make.

Who's the answer? Ted Nolan? Bob Hartley? I'm done with the soft approach. While we can say most of the blame falls to the coaches, the players are just as responsible. All the talking and meetings have been pointless.

Time for a change.

What website tonite-no tv...

It is true that Weiss is not playing great hockey but he is far from worthless. He did score 18 power play goals last year, that is the same pp goals as Ilya kovalchuck and for a lot less money.

Fire Hulton now!!!

we're finally playing a game worth watching and it's not televised!


Btw, coaching is not the problem with this team. No one expected us to be good this year and we have been competitive in most games because of the hard work from the players and the coaching staff.

Next year when we dump some salary and start building our future, Tallon's era will really begin with a mix of picks and new people he will bring in.

Explain then the lack of Power Play effectiveness..

The comments to this entry are closed.