Florida Panthers Defeat Devils 5-3, Spoiled Travis Green’s Debut as Coach | 3/5/2024

Photo: Noah K. Murray

The Devils hosted the Florida Panthers, the league’s top team, at the Prudential Center on Tuesday, March 5th. New Jersey definitely put in the effort and played hard against the league-leading team after finding themselves down 2-0 early. However, they did take an unfortunate 5-3 loss playing under their new coach, Travis Green. The Devils’ effort, energy, and determination will make a difference maker in the next coming games if they keep it up.

Panthers lineup against the Devils:

Verhaeghe – Barkov – Reinhart

Cousins – Bennett – Tkachuk

Luostarinen – Lundell – Rodrigues

Gadjovich – Stenlund – Lomberg

Forsling – Ekblad

Mikkola – Montour

Ekman-Larsson – Kulikov

Stolarz

Bobrovsky

Devils lineup against the Panthers:

Meier – Hischier – Toffoli

Hughes – Haula – Bratt

Tierney – Lazar – Mercer

MacDermid – Nosek – Holtz

Siegenthaler – Marino

Bahl – Smith

Hughes – Miller

Schmid

Daws

   Nick Cousins opened the scoring for Florida, giving them a 1-0 lead early into the first period at 17:06. He found a loose puck at the Devils’ blue line and went on to score a backhand from the slot. With a snap shot at 13:30, Evan Rodrigues pushed it to 2-0 from the high slot on the power play for his ninth goal of the season. Opening the scoring for New Jersey, Jack Hughes made it a 2-1 game on the power play with his 21st goal of the season. Hughes shot from the left point with a snap shot that had deflected off Gustav Forsling’s stick and under Anthony Stolarz’s glove. This marked his seventh goal of the season on the power play and sits behind only Tyler Toffoli, who has eight.

   At 8:59 of the middle frame, Timo Meier tied the game 2-2 after he split two of the Panthers’ defensemen in the slot. He flipped in a one-handed backhand shot for his 14th of the season. Eetu Luostarinen put Florida back in the lead 3-2 when he scored from the high slot with a wrister.

   Nick Cousins struck his second goal of the game at 14:27 of the third from the slot and off a tip-in for a 4-2 lead. Scoring his fourth goal of the season to make it 4-3, Colin Miller sent a wrist shot into the net from just inside the blue line. With only 8 seconds remaining in the final frame, Sam Reinhart recorded his 45th goal of the season for the 5-3 final.

Jack Hughes on the team’s energy, playing the Panthers, and effort: “We played better, just not the result we wanted… They’re a good team, so when you’re down two-nothing early, it definitely puts you behind,” – “Just more energy, maybe a little harder on pucks, but there are spots when we were good at that and then there were spots when we weren’t as good, so we’ll have to continue to work on that.”

Colin Miller on the team’s energy throughout the game: “I thought there were stretches of the game where we were good, definitely stretches of the game where we need a little bit more. The first period was a little hectic, but we got to build on it.”

Notes:

– Jack Hughes had a goal and an assist, and Jesper Bratt recorded two assists… Luke Hughes recorded his 24th assist of the season.

   Timo Meier has three goals in three straight games… if you include the off-side goal in San Jose, then four. He also has recorded seven points in his last six games.

– Arika Schmid made 26 saves for New Jersey, and Anthony Stolarz made 22 saves for Florida.

– Nick Cousins scored twice, and Matthew Tkachuk recorded three assists. Sam Reinhart scored his sixth goal in the past four games.

   Tkachuk hit 50 assists for this season, becoming the fourth player in club history with consecutive 50-assist seasons… He joins Johnathan Huberdreau (2x), Aleksander Barkov (2x), and Olli Jokinen (2x). Aaron Ekblad hit 230 NHL career assists, marking the most by a Florida Panthers defenseman in team history.

Genevive Oliver

I'm a 17-year-old writer and a beginner photographer! I'm a huge hockey, baseball, boxing, and basketball fan.

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