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FHN Today: Steven Lorentz Happy With Florida Panthers

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Florida Panthers forward Steven Lorentz looks for an open teammate during the second period of a preseason game against the Carolina Hurricanes on Sept. 29 in Sunrise. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee

Steven Lorentz was feeling extra happy after scoring his first goal with the Florida Panthers on Thursday in a 2-0 win in Detroit.

Not that he is ever not happy.

“Any time you can get a goal in the first or the last minute of a period, it’s a backbreaker for the other team,” Lorentz said of the eventual game-winning goal he scored with 55 seconds to go in the second period.

“I was trying to shoot it hard on net and I was fortunate enough to get a bounce. Hopefully, those bounces are coming our way a little bit more.”

Lorentz has fit into the locker room like a glove since arriving in Sunrise via a trade from the San Jose Sharks.

For someone who likes making jokes and keeping a positive attitude, the team’s culture has been a welcome change for him.

“It almost seems too good to be true,” Lorentz said.

“The camaraderie on and off the ice, everyone’s tugging on the same rope. I’ve said that countless times over and over so it’s just nice to come into a group in my first season, and it’s only nine games in and it’s feeling like I’ve been here for so long.

“Everybody treats you with respect, everybody’s positive and trying to bring the best out of you. They want you to be successful so it’s made it an easy transition from last year to this year. I’m over the moon and I hope to keep this going.”

TODAY IN PANTHERLAND

Uvis Balinskis has played a big role in helping the Panthers navigate life without Aaron Ekblad and Brandon Montour.

The 27-year-old rookie has really impressed Florida’s coaching staff after adjusting from European to North American hockey.

Sasha Barkov became the Panthers’ all-time leader in games played on Thursday. And, they got a win for him.

Sergei Bobrovsky also hit a big milestone, earning a shutout in his 650th NHL game.

— FHN reviewed your hot takes in this month’s edition of the FHN Temp Check. Be sure to look out for next month’s submission at the end of November if you want to get in on the fun.

Sam Bennett is “week-to-week” after suffering an injury in his season debut.

ESPN described the Panthers as ‘persistent’ as they gave one word to describe each team in the NHL.

NHL NEWS

Boston Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy appealed his four-game suspension for hitting Panthers defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson up high.

He cited Ekman-Larsson returning to play the next game against the Detroit Red Wings as a reason why his suspension should be reduced.

Erik Karlsson believes GM Mike Grier can help right the San Jose Sharks after a rough 0-9-1 start.

Sean Monahan is a candidate to get traded after helping the Montreal Canadiens to a hot start.

— More NHL players are open to using neck protection after the tragic death of Adam Johnson, including TJ Oshie. He used a neck-guard in-game for the Washington Capitals.

— Oshie and Tom Wilson will both wear the ‘A’ for the Washington Capitals after Nicklas Backstrom took a leave of absence.

Pittsburgh Penguins coach Mike Sullivan believes his team can do better after a rough start to the season.

— NHL leading scorer Jack Hughes left the New Jersey Devils game against the St. Louis Blues with an injury. He did not return to the game.

PANTHERS ON DECK

FLORIDA PANTHERS @ CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS

  • When: Saturday, 8 p.m.
  • Where: United Center, Chicago
  • TV/Streaming: Bally Sports Florida, ESPN+
  • Radio: WPOW 96.5 FM-2; WBZT 1230-AM (West Palm Beach); WCTH 100.3-FM (Florida Keys); WCZR 101.7-FM (Treasure Coast); SiriusXM
  • Panthers Radio Streaming: SiriusXM 932, NHL/Panthers App
  • Last Season: Tied 1-1
  • This season: @Chicago, Saturday; @Florida, Sunday Nov. 12
  • All-time regular season series: Blackhawks lead 28-18-4, 3 ties
  • Up Next for the Panthers: Monday vs. Columbus, 7 p.m.

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