Panthers lose 5-1 to Capitals in Game 2


Sunrise, Florida (AP) — Aleksander Barkov and Carter Verhaeghe each scored a goal and provided an assist, while the Florida Panthers played one game each in the Eastern Conference Round 1 Series against the Washington Capitals 5-1 on Thursday night.

Aaron Ekblad, Anton Lundell, and Mason Marchment also scored in Florida, the overall seed in the Stanley Cup playoffs. Sergei Bobrovsky blocked 26 shots.

Washington’s Nicklas Backstrom scored. Vitek Vanecek conceded 5 goals on 18 shots in the first two periods and Ilya Samsonov went into the Capitals’ goal in the third period. Blocked all 17 shots faced in the last 20 minutes.

The series has moved to Washington, with Game 3 on Saturday and Game 4 on Monday night.

It was Florida’s sixth win in their last 19 home playoff games dating back to 1996 and coincided with the largest margin of victory in franchise playoff history. Florida beat Boston 6-2 in Game 1 of the first round of the 1996 playoffs, the season the Panthers advanced to the Stanley Cup final, and won the Eastern Finals 5-1 in Pittsburgh later that season.

Florida did a lot of damage on Thursday with two short explosions, scoring two goals at 1:38 in the second half of the first period and then two goals at 2:08 in the second half of the second period.

The Panthers were almost completely ill during the first 14:30 and took two shots from that range. It has been kept low enough to go deep into the game for the third time in 84 games this season.

But the Panthers eventually took a break. Or rather, bounce.

Ekblad opened the scoring with a shot from the Washington stick, and it bounced off the ice and passed Vanecek. Barkov immediately tapped a pass through Jonathan Huberdeau’s crease, and Florida was 2-0 in the first inning.

Persevering from a difficult angle, Backstrom halved the lead by scoring with a power play at 2:44, but Marchment regained Florida’s two-goal lead just 27 seconds later. Only 7 shots to that point.

Lundell scored by caching a Give and Go against Sam Reinhart and Verhaeghe took a 5-1 lead over Vanecek’s glove with a wrist shot.

This undoubtedly served to give Samsonov a third period at the Capitals and undoubtedly brings back memories of last season when Washington used three goalkeepers in six playoff games thanks to a combination of injuries and COVID-related problems. caused

The Capitals left Game 1 shortly after scoring the series’ first goal and there was no Tom Wilson who didn’t return with a lower extremity injury. His condition is routinely listed by Capitals, who recalled forward Brett Leason from AHL’s Hershey early Thursday. Hearson made his NHL playoff debut.

note

Game 5 is now confirmed and will take place on Wednesday night at Sunrise. … Florida changed from Game 1 to Round 2 to put Noel Acciari into Ryan Lomberg’s lineup. Washington kept the same lineup with the exception of Wilson and Leeson. … NHL Commissioner Gary Batman was in the game as part of the playoff city’s postseason tour and gave the playoff a high score to kick off the playoffs after two years of COVID-19. related challenges. “Our building is full. As you can see, the word has been overused a lot lately. But the feeling of ‘normal’ or ‘close to normal’ is really good,” said Bettman.

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