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2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs

Sam Bennett Returns to Florida Panthers for Game 3

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Florida panthers
Florida Panthers center Sam Bennett congratulates Gus Forsling on his game-winning goal against the Capitals on Feb. 24. Bennett is back in the lineup tonight. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

BOSTON — The Florida Panthers are back at full health for Game 3 against the host Boston Bruins with Sam Bennett returning to the lineup.

Coach Paul Maurice said after Friday’s morning skate that, after a nap and pregame warm-ups, if Bennett felt ready to go, he would play.

And so he is.

Bennett has not played for the Panthers since leaving Game 2 against the Tampa Bay Lightning in the second period after being struck by a slap shot from Brandon Montour.

He scored a goal and assisted on the other in that game with Florida taking a 2-0 lead against the Lightning; the Panthers won that game 3-2 in overtime.

With Bennett back in, the Panthers will slide their centers down — and Steven Lorentz will play tonight in place of Nick Cousins.

Anton Lundell had been filling in on the second line since Bennett was hurt and will now go back to the third line with Eetu Luostarinen and Evan Rodrigues.

Kevin Stenlund will center Kyle Okposo and Lorentz.

Bennett returns to center the second line with Carter Verhaeghe and Matthew Tkachuk.

STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS
EASTERN CONFERENCE SEMIFINALS
FLORIDA PANTHERS (ATL1) V. BOSTON BRUINS (ATL2)
BEST-OF-7 SERIES TIED 1-1*
*Game 3 is on Friday Night*
GAME 4 

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