Florida Panthers GameDay
Lost Opportunity: Los Angeles Kings 3, Florida Panthers 2 (SO)
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For those Florida Panthers who stayed up late to watch their team play in Los Angeles on Sunday night, well, perhaps that sleep deprivation will not be worth it.
The game ended well after midnight on the east coast.
Florida, which had a 2-1 lead in the final minute of regulation, survived a wild, shorthanded overtime only to lose 3-2 in the fifth round of a shootout.
For the Panthers, it was their first loss of the season when leading after two periods as they gave up a late goal with Jonathan Huberdeau in the penalty box.
Florida had been 30-0 when leading after 40 minutes this season.
The Panthers got into some penalty trouble in the final minute-plus of the third and then in overtime.
Leading 2-1 and an empty net on the other side, Huberdeau was pulled down with an empty net and took offense, elbowing Alex Iafallo to draw a penalty — then threw with Anze Kopitar.
Huberdeau got hit with two penalties with Kopitar getting one for roughing.
Los Angeles had a 6-on-4 advantage and tied the score with a Martin Frk goal with 31.7 seconds remaining.
In overtime, Aaron Ekblad took a penalty midway through giving the Kings a man-advantage for the big chunk of the remainder of overtime.
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Florida was trying to win six consecutive road games to tie the 2015-16 team for the franchise record.
The Panthers had also won five straight.
Los Angeles, coming off a 5-0 loss in San Jose the night before, got Sunday going its way when Rasmus Kupari scored on a backhanded shot 11:50 in.
The Panthers ended up going into the second down a goal despite outshooting the KIngs 11-6 as they went 0-for-2 on the power play.
Florida came out fast in the second, but it came after Carter Verhaeghe went to the penalty box.
Right off the faceoff, Huberdeau outmuscled the puck along the boards and found a streaking Eetu Luostarinen who beat Jonathan Quick for his first NHL shorthanded goal.
It was also Luostarinen’s first goal since Dec. 30 against the Rangers.
Florida took the lead a few moments later when Sasha Barkov did a fantastic job of keeping the puck in the Los Angeles zone.
Barkov fired a shot from 35 feet out that bounced off quick with defenseman Brandon Montour charging in and following it up.
The Panthers made a strong defensive effort in the third highlighted by some big hits along the boards and some exceptional goaltending although, in the end, it was not enough.
Spencer Knight, making his second start with the Panthers in the past week, kept the Panthers in the game throughout and ended the night with 35 saves.
— Although not playing Sunday night, Florida goalie Sergei Bobrovsky was hurt in the first period when an errant shot into the bench struck him and appeared to ricochet and hit him in the face.
Bobrovsky went off to the Florida room for treatment and was back on the bench for the start of the second with a cut above his top lip. Bobrovsky was treating the cut with a bag of ice.
GR’S THREE STARS OF THE GAME
1. Jonathan Quick, Los Angeles
2. Spencer Knight, Florida
3. Martin Frk, Los Angeles
FLORIDA PANTHERS ON DECK
FLORIDA PANTHERS AT SAN JOSE SHARKS
- When: Tuesday, 10: 30 p.m.
- Where: SAP Center, San Jose
- Tickets: CLICK HERE
- Streaming Only: Hulu, ESPN+
- Radio: WQAM 560-AM, SiriusXM
- Last season: Did not play
- All-time regular season series: Florida leads 18-13-1, 7 ties
- Season Series — Florida leads 1-0: @Florida 5, San Jose 4 (OT), Jan. 29
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