The Florida Panthers jumped out to a 3-0 lead within the first six minutes of the contest, then held on from there to defeat the Carolina Hurricanes, 4-1 in a preseason game on Tuesday night at the RBC. It was a tentative, nervous start for the youth of Carolina but there were positive moments to build on in the game.
Newly signed Patrick O`Sullivan played well and was named the game's second star. Known more for his offense, O'Sullivan was playing on the penalty kill when he found himself in a two-on-one break with defenseman Anton Babchuk. He froze the goalie and then fed Babchuk, (whom he said was yelling for the puck), a perfect pass. The blueliner buried the shot, giving the Canes their only goal of the night.
The Canes came close a few other times but were unable to get the puck past the Florida netminders.
- The Canes outshot the Panthers 34-24 and were led by Jerome Samson and Drayson Bowman who had 4 shots each.
- The team only won 38% of their faceoffs, but Zac Dalpe was 6 for 8 and had a team best 78%.
Casey Borer played a physical game and also led the club with 4 blocked shots. Jay Harrison and Anton Babchuk had 3 each.
- Drayson Bowman had a team high 5 hits.
The Canes go back to practice on Wednesday, then will play three exhibition games in a row starting Thursday night in Nashville. Cory will have more about this game with another article later Wednesday morning.
(The following is a post-game interview with Patrick O'Sullivan).