Panthers
Thrashers
3 - 2 Final - 2OT
  for this game

Horton, Jokinen score in shootout to hand Panthers rare win

Jan 11, 2008 - 4:40 AM
By Phil Foley PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

ATLANTA (Ticker) -- For a team that could not buy a win in Philips Arena over several seasons, the Florida Panthers are starting to make up for lost time.

Nathan Horton and captain Olli Jokinen each netted goals in the shootout to lead the Panthers to a 3-2 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers on Thursday.

Horton and Jokinen each bested goaltender Kari Lehtonen in the bonus format, helping the Panthers record their second straight win here after having dropped 11 consecutive visits against their Southeast Division rivals dating back to 2003.

"The last time we won here (before December 27) was 2003," Jokinen said. "They're a good home team. They've got one of the better goalies in the league. We were able to play tougher defense tonight. That (was) really why we beat them."

The Finnish Jokinen had struggled of late, failing to find the net in his last six games. Nevertheless, the third overall pick in the 1997 draft beat compatriot Lehtonen with a wrister to give Florida an unlikely win.

"It's a good situation when you get a chance to win the game," Jokinen said. "It was a huge two points."

Although it will not be recorded as an official goal because it was scored in a shootout, the tally was a crucial one for the Panthers, who trail the Thrashers for second place in the Southeast Division by one point.

"I think we've played this team well this year compared to other years," Florida coach Jacques Martin said. "We had great individual efforts. It was nice to see."

After Atlanta's Vyacheslav Kozlov and Horton traded goals in the first round of the shootout, Marian Hossa and Stephen Weiss failed to break through in the second round, setting the stage for dangerous superstar Ilya Kovalchuk.

But the Russian, who added to his league lead with his 36th tally in the third period, moved toward the slot from the right faceoff circle before going back to his right and lofting a wrister wide of the net.

"I was trying to read him," Florida goaltender Tomas Vokoun said. "I thought he was going to shoot five-hole. Once he started going over (toward the slot), I knew he was going to shoot it back where he came from. He missed the net."

Horton, for one, knew how this one was going to end all along.

"I called it," Horton said. "Kovalchuk was going to miss it and (Jokinen) was going to score."

For a while, it looked like the offensively challenged Panthers, who tallied just seven goals in their previous six games, were in for another frustrating night as the club came up empty on their first 29 shots.

But Rostislav Olesz and Kamil Kreps finally broke through for Florida in the third period.

Olesz knotted the game at 1-1 at 6:38 of the session, beating Lehtonen with a slap shot on a breakaway for his sixth of the campaign.

After Kovalchuk tallied at 9:09, Kreps beat Lehtonen with a slapper less than four minutes later to level the contest at 2-2.

The teams slumbered through the first two periods before captain Bobby Holik finally got Atlanta on the board with 4:25 left in the middle session.

Kozlov rifled a perfect pass from along the left wing boards onto the stick of the 36-year-old Holik, who beat Vokoun with a one-timer from the slot.

It was the seventh goal of the season for Holik, who was critical of his club's inconsistent play after Tuesday's loss to the Philadelphia Flyers. He did not sugar-coat Atlanta's shortcomings after this contest either.

"We just didn't play well enough," Holik said. "We should have never gone to overtime."

Even with the loss, the Thrashers' tantalizing tango with the .500 mark continued. Atlanta (21-22-2), which fell to 4-2 in the bonus format this season, had been within one game of the break-even mark at the end of each of its last 12 games.

"I wasn't too displeased with the effort," Thrashers coach Don Waddell said. "I thought we had a good effort tonight. The outcome could have easily been in our favor. I don't think right now (that) we need a drastic change."

Vokoun made 26 saves en route to snapping a personal five-game losing streak for Florida.

Lehtonen turned aside 38 shots for the Thrashers.








  • NHL
    FINAL IN SHOOTOUT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 0 0 2 0 (2) 3
    ATLANTA 0 1 1 0 (1) 2 FINAL IN SHOOTOUT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: ATL - BOBBY HOLIK 7 (VYACHESLAV KOZLOV, PASCAL DUPUIS) 15:35
    3RD PRD: FLA - ROSTISLAV OLESZ 6 (STEVE MONTADOR) 6:38
    ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 36 (MARK RECCHI, TOD

    Jan 10 9:42 PM


  • NHL
    FINAL IN SHOOTOUT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 0 0 2 0 (2) 3
    ATLANTA 0 1 1 0 (1) 2 FINAL IN SHOOTOUT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: ATL - BOBBY HOLIK 7 (VYACHESLAV KOZLOV, PASCAL DUPUIS) 15:35
    3RD PRD: FLA - ROSTISLAV OLESZ 6 (STEVE MONTADOR) 6:38
    ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 36 (MARK RECCHI, TOD

    Panthers vs. ThrashersJan 10 9:42 PM


  • NHL
    END OF OT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 0 0 2 0 2
    ATLANTA 0 1 1 0 2 END OF OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: ATL - BOBBY HOLIK 7 (VYACHESLAV KOZLOV, PASCAL DUPUIS) 15:35
    3RD PRD: FLA - ROSTISLAV OLESZ 6 (STEVE MONTADOR) 6:38
    ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 36 (MARK RECCHI, TODD WHITE

    Jan 10 9:36 PM
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    Panthers vs. ThrashersJan 10 9:30 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 3RD GOING INTO OT
    1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 0 0 2 2
    ATLANTA 0 1 1 2 GOING INTO OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: ATL - BOBBY HOLIK 7 (VYACHESLAV KOZLOV, PASCAL DUPUIS) 15:35
    3RD PRD: FLA - ROSTISLAV OLESZ 6 (STEVE MONTADOR) 6:38
    ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 36 (MARK RECCHI, TODD WHITE) 9:09
    FLA - KAMIL KREPS

    Jan 10 9:26 PM
  • 82
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    RUWTbot Added 40 roots (Close Finish)

    Panthers vs. ThrashersJan 10 9:20 PM
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  • NHL
    FLORIDA 2
    ATLANTA 2
    3RD PRD: FLA - KAMIL KREPS 4 (BRETT MCLEAN) 12:54

    Panthers vs. ThrashersJan 10 9:15 PM
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  • NHL
    FLORIDA 1
    ATLANTA 2
    3RD PRD: ATL - ILYA KOVALCHUK 36 (MARK RECCHI, TODD WHITE) 9:09

    Panthers vs. ThrashersJan 10 9:08 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 1
    ATLANTA 1
    3RD PRD: FLA - ROSTISLAV OLESZ 6 (STEVE MONTADOR) 6:38

    Panthers vs. ThrashersJan 10 9:02 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 0 0 0
    ATLANTA 0 1 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: ATL - BOBBY HOLIK 7 (VYACHESLAV KOZLOV, PASCAL DUPUIS) 15:35
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLA 15 10 25
    ATL 7 10 17
    GOALIES: FLA

    Jan 10 8:34 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 0
    ATLANTA 1
    2ND PRD: ATL - BOBBY HOLIK 7 (VYACHESLAV KOZLOV, PASCAL DUPUIS) 15:35

    Panthers vs. ThrashersJan 10 8:26 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 0 0
    ATLANTA 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLA 15 15
    ATL 7 7
    GOALIES: FLA - TOMAS VOKOUN
    ATL - KARI LEHTONEN

    Jan 10 7:40 PM
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    Panthers vs. ThrashersJan 10 7:46 AM