for this game

Vokoun, Zednik help Panthers down Lightning

Feb 3, 2008 - 5:08 AM
TAMPA, Florida (Ticker) -- For the second straight night, Tomas Vokoun kept the Florida Panthers in the game long enough for the offense to win it late.

Vokoun matched a season high with 44 saves and Richard Zednik scored the game-winning goal with 65 seconds remaining in the third period as the Panthers skated to a 3-2 victory over the rival Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday night in a Southeast Division battle.

Defenseman Jay Bouwmeester and captain Olli Jokinen also tallied for Florida, which has won back-to-back contests for the first time since capturing three straight from December 16-20.

The 31-year-old Vokoun, who made 29 saves and was perfect in the shootout in Friday's 4-3 victory over the Vancouver Canucks, was sensational again in this one. He turned aside 18 shots in the first period, 15 more in the second and 11 in the third.

"At times, we were in trouble in our defensive zone," Panthers coach Jacques Martin said of Vokoun's busy night. "We would get the puck and, instead of having the poise and moving it to find the open man, we got rid of it quickly."

The Panthers received an assist from the boards on Zednik's game-winner.

Defenseman Jassen Cullimore unleashed a slap shot from the right point that went wide and bounced off the end boards to Zednik on the opposite side of the net. Zednik fired the puck past unsuspecting netminder Karri Ramo to give Florida a 3-2 edge with just over a minute left.

"We created chances," Zednik said. "We got points. I saw that everybody was on the other side and no one was covering me. He shot it off the boards and it came right to me. I wanted to go upstairs, a little over his head."

The Lightning peppered Vokoun with shots all night and held a 2-1 advantage until Jokinen tallied on a power play with 5:56 left in the third period.

"This is a tough one to swallow because this was a game we had to win against a team in our division, at home," Tampa Bay defenseman Dan Boyle said. "It's very, very frustrating."

Jokinen started the play when he delivered a pass to Bouwmeester at the right faceoff circle. Ramo made a skate save on Bouwmeester's attempt, but the rebound came right to Jokinen in the slot, and the Finn fired a wrist shot into the vacant net.

Florida received the man advantage as Boyle was sent to the penalty box for closing his hand of the puck.

"Originally, I was going to put it down and play it, but there was a guy right on me and I didn't want to take a chance getting it knocked off and having him go down by himself," Boyle said of the penalty. "It was one of those questionable calls, and it cost us a power-play goal."

"It's the right call," Lightning coach John Tortorella admitted. "Danny simply can't do that. He can't. And I watched the ref and thought we were going to get away with it. (Referee Tom Kowal) hesitated and then put his hand up."

The Lightning trailed, 1-0, after the first period, but former Panther Chris Gratton tied the contest at 4:12 of the middle session. Vokoun managed to stop defenseman Brad Lukowich's shot from the right point as well as Craig MacDonald's rebound attempt, but Gratton finished the sequence with his ninth goal of the season.

Vaclav Prospal gave Tampa Bay a 2-1 edge with 1:43 remaining in the second with his 22nd goal.

Boyle took the puck into the offensive zone and fired a shot from the top of the right circle that was stopped by Vokoun. Prospal then stuffed the rebound between the pads of the netminder.

Florida nearly tied the game in the closing seconds of the period as Nathan Horton had a breakaway after coming out of the penalty box, but Ramo denied his opportunity.

"We really needed this," Cullimore said. "We were struggling, and even though we haven't really played our best hockey these last two games, we came away with wins. The main thing right now is to get points."

Ramo stopped 29 shots for the Lightning, who went 2-3-0 on their five-game homestand.

"That's the way hockey games go," Ramo said. "We had our own chances and didn't score. That was the key to this game."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 1 0 2 3
    TAMPA BAY 0 2 0 2 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: FLA - JAY BOUWMEESTER 10 (NATHAN HORTON, DAVID BOOTH) 3:00
    2ND PRD: TAM - CHRIS GRATTON 9 (CRAIG MACDONALD, BRAD LUKOWICH) 4:12
    TAM - VACLAV PROSPAL 22 (DAN BOYLE, PAUL RANGER) 18:17
    3RD PRD: FLA - (PP) OLLI JOKINEN 2

    Feb 2 10:11 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 3
    TAMPA BAY 2
    3RD PRD: FLA - RICHARD ZEDNIK 10 (JASSEN CULLIMORE) 18:55

    Panthers vs. LightningFeb 2 10:08 PM
  • 22
    roots
    RUWTbot Took away 15 roots (Close Finish)

    Panthers vs. LightningFeb 2 10:08 PM
  • 37
    roots
    nothernrinkrat3 Added 5 roots

    Panthers vs. LightningFeb 2 9:58 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 2
    TAMPA BAY 2
    3RD PRD: FLA - (PP) OLLI JOKINEN 25 (JAY BOUWMEESTER) 14:04

    Panthers vs. LightningFeb 2 9:55 PM
  • 32
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 32 roots (Close Finish)

    Panthers vs. LightningFeb 2 9:55 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 1 0 1
    TAMPA BAY 0 2 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: FLA - JAY BOUWMEESTER 10 (NATHAN HORTON, DAVID BOOTH) 3:00
    2ND PRD: TAM - CHRIS GRATTON 9 (CRAIG MACDONALD, BRAD LUKOWICH) 4:12
    TAM - VACLAV PROSPAL 22 (DAN BOYLE, PAUL RANGER) 18:17
    SHOTS ON GOAL:

    Feb 2 9:12 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 1
    TAMPA BAY 2
    2ND PRD: TAM - VACLAV PROSPAL 22 (DAN BOYLE, PAUL RANGER) 18:17

    Panthers vs. LightningFeb 2 9:10 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 1
    TAMPA BAY 1
    2ND PRD: TAM - CHRIS GRATTON 9 (CRAIG MACDONALD, BRAD LUKOWICH) 4:12

    Panthers vs. LightningFeb 2 8:43 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 1 1
    TAMPA BAY 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: FLA - JAY BOUWMEESTER 10 (NATHAN HORTON, DAVID BOOTH) 3:00
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLA 7 7
    TAM 18 18
    GOALIES: FLA - TOMAS VOKOUN
    T

    Feb 2 8:15 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 1
    TAMPA BAY 0
    1ST PRD: FLA - JAY BOUWMEESTER 10 (NATHAN HORTON, DAVID BOOTH) 3:00

    Panthers vs. LightningFeb 2 7:44 PM