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Panthers' Matthias scores two, Vokoun and Florida defense clamp Canadiens 2-1

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Final - 1.26.2010 1 2 3 Total
Montreal Canadiens 0 1 0 1
Florida Panthers 0 0 2 2

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Was it the home or road club which walked away victorious?

Part-time Panthers forward Shawn Matthias has no illusions about the answer: his two-goal performance - the first of his NHL career - not only evened up the score for Florida on a gorgeous penalty shot but included a game winner, paving the way for a come-from-behind Cats road home win.

The victory also marked ex-Florida GM Jacques Martin's first loss to his former club. So there's that.


Tomas Vokoun was stoic - only facing 17 shots this time around; a tribute to his defenders - and only beaten by a Tomas Plekanec power play goal at 18:47 of the second period. Thus ended the 202+ minute home shutout streak, but not the netminder's determination: he only got better.

On to the third, and in less than nine minutes from goal-to-goal Matthias performed an extreme makeover on his previously questionable potential; coming in to the game with three goals in 25 games as a Panther this season, the 2006 second round pick earned a helluva lotta brownie points in an enormous win.

Oh, and he only logged 8:40 on the ice.

Notes: Remarkably, four Cats had 4 SOG: Matthias, Michael Frolik, Cory Stillman, and Rostislav Olesz. Michal Repik - recalled early Tuesday from Rochester - and Dominic Moore assisted on Matty's second goal. Announced attendance: 17,104. Steven Reinprecht - injured in Saturday's victory over Toronto - returned to the Florida lineup, logging 15:45. This was coach Peter DeBoer's first win over Canadiens' bench boss Jacques Martin, who hired him for the Florida position in 2008.