Recap: Kraken put the squeeze on Panthers, come away with 5-2 win

Cats fail in the third period yet again

The Seattle Kraken ended a three-game losing streak by pulling away from the Florida Panthers to record a 5-2 win at FLA Live Arena.

For the second straight game, the Panthers couldn’t much done in a tight game after two periods. The Cats got out-scored three to nothing in the third in Saturday’s loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning and allowed Seattle to tack on two goals to a 2-1 lead before the Kraken got their final goal with Sergei Bobrovsky off for an extra attacker.

An early misplay by Carter Verhaeghe put the puck on the stick of former Panther Jared McCann and he fed Matty Beniers, who cranked a slapper by Bobrovsky 1:04 into the opening frame.

Eric Staal notched his first goal with Florida 7:34 into the second to briefly knot the score.  Nick Cousins sent the puck to Colin White behind the net, and he centered in front to an open Staal for the finish.

The Kraken regained the lead 91 seconds later when Oliver Bjorkstrand took the puck away from Matthew Tkachuk and passed down low to Yanni Gourde. Gourde fended off Matt Kiersted and eventually spotted Andre Burakovsky joining the play from the bench. After receiving the pass. Burakovsky loaded up and snapped a wrister from just above the right circle into the back of the net.

Jordan Eberle tipped a Beniers shot past Bobrovsky at 7:15 of the third after Will Borgen sent the puck back to the right point. The goal came shortly after Florida failed to capitalize on what could’ve been a momentum shifting man-advantage.

Daniel Sprong put the game out of reach with a power-play goal with 4:51 remaining. Another ex-Cat, Alexander Wennberg found him all alone in the lower left circle and Sprong unleashed a bomb of a one-timer for his sixth of the season.

Gourde beat Aaron Ekblad to Brandon Tanev’s dump out and chipped it off the defenseman’s stick and into the empty for the final Seattle goal, with the secondary assist credited to Adam Larsson.

Some fine work along the boards by Chris Teirney resulted in Matt Kiersted taking a shot from the left point, via a tip back by Zac Dalpe, that Tierney deflected by Martin Jones at the 18:43 mark. A nice goal by Tierney, but way too little, way too late.

Once again, the Panthers had a chance to come away with a point or two in a close game and utterly failed in the third period. The Cats went 0 for 3 on the power play and were limited to a mere 25 shots for the second straight game. With Anton Lundell, Radko Gudas and Patric Hornqvist out, the Panthers don’t look very competitive, but maybe the most disturbing take from this weekend is the call-ups from Charlotte (and fossil Eric Staal) have continued to produce while the top players on the roster struggled. Florida will most likely be without the services of Ryan Lomberg on Tuesday after his five-minute major and game misconduct for boarding Justin Schultz. At least someone out there got lots of fantasy points for that.

Tentacles & Suckers

  • The second-year Kraken improved to 3-1 all-time against the Panthers and have won both of the games played at FLA Live Arena by three-goal margins.
  • Eric Staal’s first goal as a member of the Panthers was his 442nd in the NHL, fifth among active players. Staal has collected a point in five of his last six games. Didn’t see that coming...
  • Matty Beniers leads all NHL rookies with 11 goals and 23 points. His five shots on goal matched Gustav Forsling for the game-high.
  • Tough night for defenseman Aaron Ekblad, who finished with an ugly -4 rating and was also on the ice for Daniel Sprong’s power-play screamer.
  • Winning goalie Martin Jones finished with 23 stops while loser Sergei Bobrovsky finished with 27 saves on 31 shots.
  • For of the other side of Florida’s latest loss, visit Davy Jones Locker Room./