for this game

Jokinen's two goals lift Panthers over Capitals

Nov 20, 2007 - 4:37 AM
WASHINGTON (Ticker) -- Captain Olli Jokinen helped make sure the Florida Panthers continued their dominance of the Washington Capitals.

Jokinen scored two goals and defenseman Richard Zednik had two assists against his former team to lead the Panthers to a 4-3 victory over the Capitals on Monday night in a Southeast Division matchup.

David Booth and Kamil Kreps also tallied for Florida, which has beaten Washington in 14 of its last 18 meetings.

"The last two years we've been able to find a way to beat them," said Jokinen, who has 13 goals and 26 points in 43 career games against Washington. "My first five years in Florida, there were definitely a lot of embarrassing games over here. Somehow, we've been able to beat them."

Jokinen gave the Panthers a 3-1 lead with his first goal of the night, knocking in a rebound off a shot by Zednik at 6:15 of the second period.

"It was 2-on-2, and Zednik, with his speed, was able to beat their defenseman and he took the puck to the net," Jokinen said. "It was on the side of the net and I shot it back and it hit their defenseman. Somehow, it found a way to go in."

The Panthers' scoring leader with 23 points, Jokinen extended Florida's advantage to 4-1 at 6:54 of the third period on a wrist shot from inside the right circle that sailed over Capitals goaltender Olaf Kolzig's right shoulder. Zednik and Jozef Stumpel assisted on Jokinen's 11th tally of the season.

Jokinen again credited Zednik and the Panthers' defenders for making his scoring play possible.

"Again it was 2-on-2, and he made a really nice drop pass to me," Jokinen said. "He was going toward their right defenseman, so he kind of blocked both defensemen out.

"I tried to shoot high and the puck went where I wanted to shoot. It was a great play by him - and we had a three-goal lead at the time and a chance to put them away."

The victory was just the third on the road for the Panthers this season.

"It was great to hold the lead and get two points," Jokinen said. "It's a good feeling always in the locker room when you win."

With less than 2 minutes remaining in the second period, chants of "Fire Hanlon!" broke out among the crowd of 13,411 at Verizon Center. Coach Glen Hanlon is on the hot seat in Washington because of the Capitals' 6-13-1 start during his fourth season at the helm.

"Certainly, I know these guys well enough," an exasperated Hanlon said of the Capitals, who are 1-7-1 this month. "It's not a matter of not caring or not trying. There is likely some nervousness there. ... It looks like early on there were some errors made through just being a little uptight.

"That is the furthest thing that needs to happen here," Kolzig said when asked about the possibility of a coaching change. "How many shocks do you need?"

Booth's fifth goal of the season gave Florida an early 1-0 edge at 3:33 of the first period.

Less than two minutes later, the Capitals answered as Brooks Laich's unassisted, shorthanded goal tied the game at 1-1. Laich fluttered a shot from inside the left circle and it sailed between the pads of Panthers netminder Tomas Voukon at 5:02.

"It has nothing to do with anything the coaching staff has given us," Laich said of the Capitals' struggles. "It's on us players and individuals to be ready to play. We have to realize how desperate we are right now.

"It's starting to slide away from us. We have to play every game like it's our last game right now."

The Panthers took a 2-1 lead with 51 seconds remaining in the first period when Kreps notched his third goal of the campaign.

Washington tried to mount a comeback after Alexander Semin and Chris Clark both scored in the third period to close the deficit to the final margin.

"When you look at their top three lines, they are probably one of most gifted group of guys in the whole league," said Jokinen, who has seven goals and 15 points in his last 12 games. "If you give those guys room, they are going to find a way to score.

"They were definitely cheating a little bit and going for offense the last 10 minutes. They were able to score two, but good for us they didn't get that fourth goal and tie the game."

Semin, who finished last season with 38 goals and 73 points, returned from a 15-game hiatus because of an ankle injury sustained during the preseason. He had not played since October 27 when he spent just 4:08 on the ice at St. Louis, where he aggravated the injury.

"I was going to play him 12 (minutes); he ended up with 18," Hanlon said of Semin. "He played eight minutes in the third and scored a remarkable goal. He'll likely score 40 no matter how many games he plays this year. He's really quite a talent and no one can appreciate what he did out there tonight."

Martin appreciated the fact that the Panthers can build off this victory.

"When you look at the goals we got, three of them were rebounds or going to the net," Panthers coach Jacques Martin said. "We won the hockey game. We didn't pack it in. We got one goal even-strength. They got one goal even-strength. They got the other one on the power play. You build from that."

Washington is just lucky to end the series against teams from the state of Florida. The Capitals have now lost their last four consecutive games - with two coming against the Panthers, and the other two against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

"For some reason, we weren't physical in the first two periods," Laich said. "We were throwing soft pucks up the middle. We weren't tight as a team. Just a little sloppy play today - a little loose play and the fans got on us for that. Rightfully so. We weren't playing up to our standards or their standards.

"Third period, we got a little desperate," Laich continued. "We need to have that desperation in the first period and have that sense of urgency when we drop the puck because we're starting to fall behind here."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 2 1 1 4
    WASHINGTON 1 0 2 3 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: FLA - DAVID BOOTH 5 (RUSLAN SALEI, STEPHEN WEISS) 3:33
    WAS - (SH) BROOKS LAICH 4 (UNASSISTED) 5:02
    FLA - KAMIL KREPS 3 (VILLE PELTONEN, RADEK DVORAK) 19:09
    2ND PRD: FLA - OLLI JOKINEN 10 (RICHARD ZEDNIK, JOZEF STUMPEL

    Nov 19 9:29 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 4
    WASHINGTON 3
    3RD PRD: WAS - (PP) CHRIS CLARK 3 (ALEXANDER OVECHKIN, MICHAEL
    NYLANDER) 13:56

    Panthers vs. CapitalsNov 19 9:17 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 4
    WASHINGTON 2
    3RD PRD: WAS - ALEXANDER SEMIN 1 (TOMAS FLEISCHMANN, MICHAEL NYLANDER)
    8:14

    Panthers vs. CapitalsNov 19 9:08 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 4
    WASHINGTON 1
    3RD PRD: FLA - OLLI JOKINEN 11 (RICHARD ZEDNIK, JOZEF STUMPEL) 6:54

    Panthers vs. CapitalsNov 19 9:03 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 2 1 3
    WASHINGTON 1 0 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: FLA - DAVID BOOTH 5 (RUSLAN SALEI, STEPHEN WEISS) 3:33
    WAS - (SH) BROOKS LAICH 4 (UNASSISTED) 5:02
    FLA - KAMIL KREPS 3 (VILLE PELTONEN, RADEK DVORAK) 19:09
    2ND PRD: FLA - OLLI JOKINEN 10 (RICHARD ZEDNIK)

    Nov 19 8:36 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 3
    WASHINGTON 1
    2ND PRD: FLA - OLLI JOKINEN 10 (RICHARD ZEDNIK) 13:45

    Panthers vs. CapitalsNov 19 8:35 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 2 2
    WASHINGTON 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: FLA - DAVID BOOTH 5 (RUSLAN SALEI, STEPHEN WEISS) 3:33
    WAS - (SH) BROOKS LAICH 4 (UNASSISTED) 5:02
    FLA - KAMIL KREPS 3 (VILLE PELTONEN, RADEK DVORAK) 19:09
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    ---

    Nov 19 7:47 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 2
    WASHINGTON 1
    1ST PRD: FLA - KAMIL KREPS 3 (VILLE PELTONEN, RADEK DVORAK) 19:09

    Panthers vs. CapitalsNov 19 7:46 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 1
    WASHINGTON 1
    1ST PRD: WAS - (SH) BROOKS LAICH 4 (UNASSISTED) 5:02

    Panthers vs. CapitalsNov 19 7:19 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 1
    WASHINGTON 0
    1ST PRD: FLA - DAVID BOOTH 5 (RUSLAN SALEI, STEPHEN WEISS) 3:33

    Panthers vs. CapitalsNov 19 7:16 PM