ReCat: Nine Lives
Florida continues their franchise-record winning streak with their ninth straight victory, against the visiting Wild of Minnesota.
Jaromir Jagr provided all the goals that the Panthers would need in a neat 2-1 win over the visiting Minnesota Wild on Sunday night.
Jagr was assisted by Dmitry Kulikov and Jonathan Huberdeau to get the Cats on the board in the first minute of play. It was Jag's 12th goal of the season, which currently leads the Panthers, as well as Kulikov's 100th career assist. Florida got through the first period again without allowing their opponent onto the board. They still lead the NHL with only 18 goals allowed in the opening frame.
Jason Zucker (10) pulled the Wild even less than a minute into the middle frame, with assists from Mikko Koivu and Ryan Suter.
Jagr scored his second goal of the game, his 13th of the season, his 19th as a Panther and the 735th since joining the NHL back in 1991-92 at the 8:52 mark of the third period. Now he's just six behind third-place Brett Hull on the NHL's all-time leaderboard. Kulikov had his second assist of the night, and now has seven for the season. Brandon Pirri also dished out a helper on the play, his 12th of the season. The goal would put Florida on the strong side of the score for good.
Lost in all the hype of Florida's franchise-record nine game win streak, the Panthers won just their fifth game against the Minnesota Wild in 18 tries. It was their first win over the Wild in over two calendar years, since October 19th, 2013.
Despite Florida's current position on top of the crowded Atlantic Division, their 50 points in 39 games is only three more than they had last year at this point (as well as the 2011-12 club that we were all so fond of). I'm all for getting excited, but I'm going to continue to temper my enthusiasm until after the all-star break. Hopefully, the Panthers will still be piling up consecutive victories at that time.
Keep your browser here at LBC for Todd's AM Recap in the morning. Hockey Wilderness has more on the Wild, and the Panthers will hit the road to play the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday. Die By The Blade covers them.