Miami Sports Day

NHL: Late Goals Don’t Help in Panthers 3-2 Loss

NEWARK, N.J. –– Kyle Palmieri had a goal and an assist, and Keith Kinkaid made 35 saves to help the New Jersey Devils end a three-game losing streak with a 3-2 win against the Florida Panthers at Prudential Center on Saturday.

Taylor Hall had a goal to extend his point streak to seven games (two goals, nine assists), and Blake Coleman scored for the Devils (5-2-1), who were 0-2-1 after starting the season 4-0-0.

“It was a huge win for us,” Kinkaid said. “We want to be a more consistent team, and it was key to have a good start against Florida and keep that going. Maybe we can finish a few more of those breakaways there, but it’s early in the season, so we’re still fine.”

The Devils took a 3-0 lead before Mike Matheson and Mike Hoffman scored third-period goals for the Panthers (2-4-3). Goaltender James Reimer made 23 saves.

“The difference in the game was us not burying some of the 2-on-1s, or the breakaway (by Vincent Trocheck 15:20 into the second period),” Panthers coach Bob Boughner said. “I think we hit a crossbar on the power play. We hit another post midway through the third. The puck wasn’t really our friend; they buried their chances. I think it was a pretty even game.”

The Panthers held a 37-26 advantage in shots, and 45-34 advantage in face-offs.

“Being down 3-0 was a little bit too much,” Reimer said. “We gave it a good effort. We played hard.”

Palmieri deflected a shot from the slot 19:50 into the first to give the Devils a 1-0 lead. Florida used a coach’s challenge for goaltender interference but the call on the ice was upheld.

“It was an offensive zone face-off,” Palmieri said. “Hall did a good job winning the draw back to [Nico Hischier], who jumped in as a winger. I went to the net and set up in front of the net and was fortunate to get a lucky bounce after [Florida] carried the play in the first.”

Palmieri has at least one point in seven of eight games this season and leads the Devils with 13 points (eight goals, five assists).

Hall made it 2-0 when he took a pass from Palmieri and scored 3:05 into the second. Hall’s 11 points are his most through eight games in a season in his NHL career. Hischier had two assists and has six points (three goals, three assists) in his past four games.

“[Hall and Hischier] are two world-class players and they create space and set you up, and I think for me it’s just about playing my game,” Palmieri said. “That has resulted in some chances and they’re going in for us right now. Let’s hope it continues.”

Coleman, who led the Devils with five hits, extended the lead to 3-0 when he deflected in a shot at 13:22.

Matheson scored 15:03 into the third period to pull the Panthers within 3-1 before Hoffman scored with the goalie pulled for an extra attacker at 19:45 to make it 3-2.

“They scored some goals but it’s such a hard league in which to win,” Palmieri said. “Teams are going to press and whether you’re protecting a two-, or one-goal lead in the third, they’ll have their push. That’s a talented team over there, so it was nice to get rewarded and get the regulation win.”


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