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End of Three: Panthers Hang On for the Victory, 4-3

A furious third period, eventually resulting in a "W", punctuated a great night for Florida in many ways.

The expected collapse following the first goal against? Nah. Three Panther goals in the same frame made it clear the Cats were gamers, at least early.

A frantic second period, resembling post-season hockey - a rarity between West and East teams during the regular season - proved the folks from Florida were not only hanging on with a 3-3 score, but ready to take charge, as evidenced by a late Cory Stillman goal (2nd of the night, 5 on the year).

San Jose threw everything at Tomas Vokoun after the 15 minute mark of the third in what appeared to be a Loss In Progress. We've seen many LIP's over the past few years. However, the Cats kept cool, kept focused, and somehow also kept the puck out of their net. The Florida crease resembled Penn Station at 5:00 pm, with Sharks buzzing and swiping at anything resembling a black disk or blue squalus. The result for San Jose? Nuthin'. Not because of luck, be it good or bad, but due to the Panthers' willingness to destroy everything in teal they found in their way.

Good stuff, folks. Off with the teal, on to the Blues tomorrow. Yikes...Tkachuk? So what. Where's the nearest buffet?