NHL Game Summary - Florida at Philadelphia
(Saturday, November 12th)
Final Score: Philadelphia 5, Florida 4
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Mike Knuble scored his second goal of the game while Philadelphia was shorthanded with 3.2 seconds left in regulation to lead the streaking Flyers past the Florida Panthers, 5-4, at the Wachovia Center.
Jeff Carter also scored shorthanded for Philadelphia, which won its sixth straight game and ninth in a row at home. Simon Gagne and Joni Pitkanen added goals for the Flyers, while Robert Esche made 26 saves in the win.
Kristian Huselius, Gary Roberts, Martin Gelinas and Niklas Hagman all scored for the Panthers, who lost their eighth straight game. Florida has also lost six straight on the road.
Backup goaltender Jamie McLennan stopped 34-of-39 shots faced in the loss.
With Pitkanen off for hooking with a minute left, the Flyers found themselves shorthanded and hoping to just get to overtime. However, with time winding down, Michal Handzus carried the puck up the ice and into the offensive zone. The puck was then poked away, but Knuble scooped it up and blasted a shot from the right circle that beat McLennan high stick-side for the last-second score.
Knuble thought he had given the Flyers the lead with 3:56 left in the third after he jammed the puck into the net from the crease. However, the goal was waived off because the whistle had blown.
It was a tough loss for the Panthers, as they fell behind three times in the game only to come back and tie it each time.
The Flyers took an early lead just 57 seconds into the game on an individual effort by Gagne. He beat a Florida defenseman to a loose puck in the offensive zone and went forehand-to-backhand in front of the net for the unassisted goal, his 17th of the year.
Philadelphia then opened up a 2-0 advantage at the 2:58 mark. Peter Forsberg controlled the puck up the left boards and he found Knuble with a pass in the slot that the forward was able to convert into a goal.
Florida would respond to tie the game, however. The first goal came after Chris Gratton slid the puck from the left circle to Huselius, who was stationed to the right of the goal mouth. Huselius then easily tipped the pass into the net for a 2-1 game. Just 1:17 later, Roberts tied the game after his quick shot from the left circle beat Esche for a goal.
Later on, with Mike Rathje off for interference, Carter would put the Flyers back up with his shorthanded goal at the 13:45 mark of the first. However, the Panthers tied it again 2:14 into the second after Gelinas re-directed a pass past Esche and into the net.
Again, Philadelphia responded, this time on the power play. After McLennan made the initial save on a shot, Handzus swatted the puck back to the top of the left circle and Pitkanen slapped at the disc, beating McLennan and putting the Flyers up 4-3 at the 5:06 mark.
After Florida killed off a penalty midway through the second, Olli Jokinen found Hagman with a pass from behind the net. The forward skated across the slot and fired a shot over Esche's right shoulder to tie the game at 4-4. It was Hagman's first goal of the season.
The Flyers improved to 6-1 in one-goal games...Florida matched its season high in goals scored in a game. The Panthers had also scored four goals three previous times and were 1-2 in those contests...Forsberg tallied his 25th assist of the year...Knuble now has 10 goals on the season...Gratton's assist on Huselius' goal was only his second point of the season...Handzus had two assists in the game...Florida was 0-for-5 on the power play. The Flyers scored once in five chances, but did have the two short-handed goals.
11/13 02:21:05 ET