Once rookie goalie Jacob Markstrom got over his opening-shot jitters, the rest was child's play. Markstrom, who had given up goals within the first 2:35 of his last four starts, including three on the opponent's first shot, stopped Eric Staal's breakaway 71 seconds into the game. That seemed to calm the lanky Swede's nerves, as did the Panthers' second three-goal burst in the third period in the last two games to secure a sorely needed 4-1 victory over the Southeast Division-leading Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday night at PNC Center. Markstrom had 33 saves but lost a bid for his first career shutout with 2:33 left on Jordan Staal's coast-to-coast, too-little-too-late power-play tally. Far more significantly, the victory was just the Panthers' second in March, and it snapped a six-game winless streak on the first leg of a season-long five-game road trip. The Panthers also ended several disturbing trends. *For the first time in seven games they didn't trail by at least 2-0 at some point in the first period. *They scored two consecutive power-play goals to end a nine-game drought at 0 for 18. *And they won in a city and building that has been a house of horrors since 2004, where the Hurricanes have dominated them at 22-3-2. "It was nice to get the power play, the win, the tempo of play, we got some big goaltending, so it was a fairly complete effort,'' Panthers coach Kevin Dineen said. "There's a big sigh right now, all of us needed to get these two points and keep moving forward.'' While it wasn't as rapid-fire as Saturday's 1-2-3 1:43 goal explosion in a 4-3 loss to the Islanders, this three-goal flurry came over a 4:40 span and did the trick.
Markstrom shines in feel-good 4-1 Panthers' win over Hurricanes
Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel | Mar 20