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Florida Panthers Have Another Rough Night in Vancouver



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The Florida Panthers bench is ready for warmups Thursday night prior to Roberto Luongo being inducted into the Vancouver Canucks’ Ring of Honor. // Photo courtesy @FlaPanthers

The Florida Panthers could not stay out of their own way in their second consecutive shutout loss in the Pacific Northwest.

Florida’s 4-0 loss to the Vancouver Canucks could be summed up by one play: A Sergei Bobrovsky giveaway which gave Dakota Joshua a shot at a wide-open net midway through the second period.

He buried it, putting the Canucks up by three goals and putting the game well out of reach for the Panthers.

It was the first time the Panthers were shut out in consecutive games since October 2011.

Not the kind of showing they wanted on Roberto Luongo Night.

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“I think we have a lot of work to do on the Florida Panthers front before we get to pre-scouting the Oilers,” coach Paul Maurice said.

The game went downhill quickly for Florida after that.

They did not record a shot for the last 7:24 of the second period, and Brock Boeser added another goal on the power play late in the second period to put Vancouver up by four goals.

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The problems stemmed further than that.

For one, Matthew Tkachuk was noticeably trying to be too creative while trying to break out of one of the most significant slumps of his career, having just five goals in 29 games this season.

He tried two between-the-legs shots on high-danger chances, and both missed the net.

His biggest blunder was when he had a wide-open net in front of him just over five minutes into the second period and sent the puck right through the gaping goal crease.

The Panthers got a power play out of it, with that shot happening on a delayed penalty following an interference penalty drawn by Dmitry Kulikov.

Still, they could not do anything with it.

Nor could they with any other chances they had on the power play.

Florida finished the game 0-for-3 with three shots on the power play, but it did not look pretty.

“We have to find a way to battle for those second, third and fourth chances,” Sasha Barkov said.

They spent a lot of time fumbling the puck in the neutral zone and the shots they did manage to get off did not bother Thatcher Demko.

The Panthers tried a new configuration on the power play, running with two defensemen — Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Aaron Ekblad — behind Tkachuk, Barkov and Sam Reinhart. However, they still could not break out of their slump.

But again, it was just one of those nights.

Vancouver jumped ahead early, with Andrei Kuzmenko jumping on a loose puck following a Ryan Lomberg turnover and slipping past the Florida defense 4:03 into the game.

The Panthers had to chase the game from there. Demko was not letting them get back into it.

A two-goal night from Joshua put it to bed quickly.

Demko finished it off with a 36-save shutout.

Florida ended the game on as good of a note as possible in a shutout loss.

After Maurice opted to pull Bobrovsky for Anthony Stolarz to start the third period, the rest of the team seemed to answer for him.

He only faced one shot while the Panthers put up 15.

After trailing heavily in both categories in the first two periods, Florida led 10-3 in scoring chances and 8-2 in high-danger chances.

But still, they couldn’t find an answer for Demko.

“We were sloppy today, a couple of bounces didn’t go our way,” Kevin Stenlund said. “But it is what it is.”



  • When: Saturday, 8 p.m.
  • Where: Rogers Place, Edmonton
  • TV/Streaming: Bally Sports Florida, ESPN+
  • Radio: WAXY 790-AM; WBZT 1230-AM (Palm Beach); WCTH 100.3-FM (Florida Keys); SiriusXM
  • Panthers Radio Streaming: SiriusXM 932, NHL App
  • This Season (Florida Leads 1-0) — At Florida: Panthers 5, Oilers 3 (Nov. 20). At Edmonton: Saturday.
  • Last Season: Edmonton won 2-0
  • All-time Regular Season Series: Oilers lead 23-15-0, 3 ties

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