Nathan Horton, Tyler Seguin Each Score, But Panthers Rally for 3-2 Shootout Win


Nathan Horton, Tyler Seguin Each Score, But Panthers Rally for 3-2 Shootout Win
Final, Panthers 3-2 (shootout): After a third-period rally to force overtime, the Panthers pull out the victory in a shootout to spoil the Bruins' Garden debut this season.

Patrice Bergeron opens the shootout for Boston with a goal through the 5-hole, but Mike Santorelli answers for Florida on the Panthers' first attempt.

Ryan Spooner is denied in the second round as he goes wide right and cuts across the net, but Cory Stillman scores up over Rask for a 2-1 lead.

Seguin is denied in Round 3 as Florida claims the 3-2 victory with a 2-1 edge in the shootout.

End overtime, 2-2: And we'll go to a shootout in this one, with the game still deadlocked after 65 minutes.

Overtime, 4:51, 2-2: Spooner is an overtime machine, as he has another bid, this time from the right wing, but Clemmensen makes the save.

Overtime, 1:51, 2-2: Ryan Spooner, who won the second rookie game in OT last week, nearly did it again, but couldn't convert on a dash down the left wing, Caron also had a chance at the right post after Bartkowski's shot went wide.

End Regulation, 2-2: Sixty minutes won't be enough to settle this one, as we're headed to overtime after the Panthers rallied to tie it with two goals in the third.

Florida outshot Boston 9-7 in the frame and holds a 26-22 edge overall. But the Bruins will still have 17 seconds of power-play time remaining, which will be a 4-on-3 advantage in OT.

Third Period, 18:17, 2-2: Yet another Bruins' chance on the power play, as they'll close out regulation on the man-advantage after McArdle takes out Kampfer.

McArdle off for tripping to give the Bruins, who are 0 for 4 on the power play, another crack at pulling this one out.

Third Period, 15:08, 2-2: The two top-three picks from this year's draft each almost scored, in very different ways.

Florida's Gudbranson sent a length of the clear on net, and it slipped through Rask's pads, but stayed out of the net. Seguin then had a more traditional chance as he broke through the defense, but Clemmensen made the save.

Third Period, 14:24, 2-2: The Bruins have a chance to regain the lead as they go on the power play thanks to some hard work by Seguin.

He draws a holding call on Reasoner trying to work his way out of the zone. Big opportunity for the B's here.

Third Period, 11:47, 2-2: Some nice sustained noise here at the Garden as the crowd tries to get the B's back on track after giving up their two-goal lead in the third. Doesn't feel like a preseason atmosphere in here for this one.

Third Period, 8:46, 2-2: And we're all tied up, as a turnover behind the net leads to a quick Florida strike.

Horton got caught trying to come around behind the Bruins cage, and was checked by Marty Reasoner, who gained control of the puck and fed it out to McArdle for the tying goal.

We've got a new game now, all even with just over 11 minutes to play.

Third Period, 6:51, Bruins 2-1: The "kid line" of Spooner, Sauve and Caron gets into a bit of trouble, getting out-muscled in their own end as Florida has a chance to pull even.

Steve Bernier couldn't take advantage as he whistled one wide from the right slot. The youngsters have impressed with their speed and skill, but there will be times when they're physically overmatched by the veterans in the NHL.

Caron had a welcome to the NHL moment a few shifts earlier, as he was decked at center ice by Grant while looking for the puck in his skates.

Third Period, 5:26, Bruins 2-1: Seguin nearly gets sent in alone, but the play is blown dead on an offsides call.

Third Period, 2:20, Bruins 2-1: The Panthers get on the board to make this a one-goal game thanks to a strange bounce in front.

Marty Reasoner's shot from the left wing was blocked by Steve Kampfer, but the puck landed at the feet of Radek Dvorak at the top of the crease, and he's able to tap it in behind Rask.

Third Period, 0:20, Bruins 2-0: The final period is under way. Both Rask and Clemmensen remain in the net, so it looks like both starting goalies will go the whole way in this one.

That's standard for the Bruins, as Claude Julien has gone with just one goalie in each of the first two exhibition games as well. But the Canadiens on Wednesday and Panthers on Thursday each split the netminding duties between two keepers in those games,

End Second Period, Bruins 2-0: A strong 20 minutes from the B's leads to a two-goal advantage in this one.

And it was the two prized newcomers who provided the scores, with Tyler Seguin scoring his first pro goal and Nathan Horton adding his second in as many games this preseason.

At the other end of the ice, Tuukka Rask once again appears in midseason form. He's stopped all 17 shots he's faced, including 12 in the second when the Panthers actually held a 12-10 edge.

Second Period, 19:13, Bruins 2-0: Some nice hustle from the youngsters almost leads to another Boston goal.

After Florida couldn't keep the puck in at the point, Max Sauve wins a race for it down the left boards, tipping it ahead to Ryan Spooner. Spooner circles around the net and feeds it out to Alexandrov, but the rookie defenseman misfires on the shot attempt.

Second Period, 16:21, Bruins 2-0: The Bruins will get another shot on the power play as Joe Callahan gets sent off for a high hit to the head of David Krejci.

Not the best way for the Brockton, Mass. native to win over the home crowd, but Krejci appeared unfazed as he continued on in the play until the whistle. Callahan gets two minutes for high-sticking.

Second Period, 14:02, Bruins 2-0: During a TV timeout, Marc Savard is shown on the jumbotron taking in the game from the ninth floor. Huge ovation for Savvy from the Garden faithful.

Second Period, 11:51, Bruins 2-0: And the other prized newcomer makes his Garden debut memorable, as Nathan Horton scores to make it 2-0.

Horton cruised into the offensive zone looking for an opening, and he found it as Krejci gets the puck to him from along the boards. Horton cuts to the middle and snaps off a nasty wrister for his first goal on Garden ice as a Bruin.

Second Period, 9:46, Bruins 1-0: A big pile up in the corner of the Bruins zone leads to another Panthers' power play, as Greg Campbell gets whistled for interference.

After seeing a sea of empty seats as this one got under way, the Garden has filled in nicely and the crowd has definitely gotten into it. Some physical play from Lucic and Seguin's first goal can have that effect on a Bruins crowd.

Second Period, 9:02, Bruins 1-0: There's a sight you don't see often, Bergeron breaks his stick on a face-off attempt. Got to love those durable composite twigs.

Second Period, 7:08, Bruins 1-0: Arniel with a testing bid on Clemmensen from the slot as he gained the zone during a line change. Arniel almost handcuffed him with a rising shot.

Second Period, 6:17, Bruins 1-0: Lots of action in the Bruins zone, with Florida buzzing around the Boston net. The Panthers still haven't gotten anything past Rask, but the B's netminder looks o be getting a bit upset with the crease crashing going on.

Second Period, 1:44, Bruins 1-0: The Bruins have a chance to add to their new lead as they go on the power play with Scott Timmins called for holding.

Second Period, 1:21, Bruins 1-0: So much for that quiet first period for Tyler Seguin, as the rookie strikes for his first pro goal.

Seguin barreled down the right wing, collecting a crossing pass from Zdeno Chara in the circle and wristing it home. Mark Recchi began the play with a pass down to Chara from the blue line to earn the secondary assist.

Second Period, 0:00, 0-0: With Lucic still in the box serving his fighting penalty, Jamie Arniel gets a shift on the top line with Krejci and Horton. Arniel is promptly leveled behind the Panthers' net on a good hit by rookie Erik Gudbranson.

End First Period, 0-0: The first period of hockey at the Garden is in the books, with the Bruins and Panthers still searching for their first goal.

There's been no shortage of rough stuff, however, with Milan Lucic setting the tone with a huge, albeit questionable, hit on Mike Weaver that drew an elbowing call, then pounding out a decision in a spirited scrap with Triston Grant.

Lucic said earlier this week that fighting was a skill like any other that players need to practice in the preseason, but he didn't look like he needed much work on that aspect of his game.

Mark Stuart also got into a bout, though that one had more wrestling than punching. Both offenses have lacked punch as well, with the Bruins holding a 6-5 edge in shots despite being short-handed three times. The Panthers didn't have a shot at even strength in that period, with four on the power play and one short-handed.

It was a quiet first period for Tyler Seguin, who played just 4:16 as the Bruins were short-handed so often. Ryan Spooner was more impressive with an explosive burst for a partial breakaway that drew a penalty, but he also played just 2:49 in the first.

First Period, 17:22, 0-0: Another battle breaks out, with Florida's Triston Grant trying to avenge the hit on Weaver as he drops the gloves with Lucic.

But Grant gets the worst of the exchange as they go toe-to-toe with Lucic landing the heaviest blows.

They were talking before the face-off, but were on opposite wings and had to come together before shedding the mitts.

First Period, 16:09, 0-0: Another fruitless power play for the Panthers, who fail again to get a shot on goal with the man-advantage.

They didn't even create much pressure this time, with the best scoring chance belonging to the Bruins when rookie defenseman Matt Bartkowski pinched in for a shot on Clemmensen from the left circle.

First Period, 14:09, 0-0: The Bruins are short-handed again, but at least Milan Lucic got his money's worth, as he absolutely obliterated Mike Weaver in the left corner of the Florida zone with a huge hit.

Lucic will sit for two minutes for elbowing, while Weaver will probably need to spend a little more time than that with an ice-pack after this one.

First Period, 12:20, 0-0: The Panthers had lenty of possession time on that power play, but didn't get a shot on goal, largely because Joe Callahan had three attempts from the right point go wide or get blocked.

Alexandrov also made another nice defensive play to break up a Steven Reinprecht bid. Alexandrov hasn't shown too much in camp, but he's been much more impressive in a game setting in his preseason debut.

First Period, 10:20, 0-0: And the Panthers go right back on the power play as Zdeno Chara is sent off for roughing.

First Period, 9:58, 0-0: The Bruins kill off the penalty, but Florida does threaten once as Michael Grabner has a chance from in close in the low slot.

First Period, 7:58, 0-0: Bruins getting a little sloppy in their own zone.

Yury Alexandrov made a nice play to break up a Radek Dvorak shot attempt from behind after a turnover at the blue line, but Jamie Arniel picks up a hooking minor on the same play, giving Florida its first power-play chance.

First Period, 5:59, 0-0: And the first scrap of the night is in the books, with Mark Stuart dropping the gloves with Florida's Kenndal McArdle.

After a collision in the corner, Stuart threw McArdle to the ice. He let him back up and they shed the glove for a long square-off, but it was mostly wrestling once they came together. Stuart gets a second takedown to end it.

First Period, 2:01, 0-0: The Bruins get an early power-play chance as Ryan Spooner does a nice job driving to the net for a near breakaway, forcing Nathan Paestch to take a holding penalty.

First Period, 0:45, 0-0: Tyler Seguin has taken his first shift with the varsity in the Garden, lining up on the right side with Bergeron and Recchi.

7:07 p.m.: The pre-game festivities have concluded and the anthem sung, and the hockey is ready to get under way at the Garden.

It's a more intimate gathering on hand for this one compared to the big crowds that came out for the rookie games last week, though the seats may fill in a bit as the games gets going.

Perhaps some fans stayed away when they found out they wouldn't get another chance to boo Dennis Wideman, as the former Bruins defenseman will not be in the lineup for Florida.

The Panthers will start the Bernier-Santorelli-Olesz line, with Ellerby and Weaver on defense and Clemmensen in goal.

For the Bruins, newcomer Nathan Horton starts in his Garden debut alongside Milan Lucic and David Krejci, while Mark Stuart and Matt Bartkowski are on the blue line and Rask, as expected, is in net.

6:45 p.m.: The warm-ups have wrapped up here at the Garden, with Tuukka Rask off first, once again indicating he'll get the start in net for the Bruins. Former Boston College goalie Scott Clemmensen was first off for the Panthers.

The full line combinations and defense pairings, based on the warm-ups:

Bruins

Forwards
Milan Lucic-David Krejci-Nathan Horton
Tyler Seguin-Patrice Bergeron-Mark Recchi
Jordan Caron-Ryan Spooner-Max Sauve
Jamie Arniel-Greg Campbell-Brian McGrattan

Defense
Zdeno Chara-Steve Kampfer
Mark Stuart-Matt Bartkowski
Yury Alexandrov-Dennis Seidenberg

Goalies
Tuukka Rask
Nolan Schaefer

Panthers

Forwards
Rostislav Olesz-Mike Santorelli-Steve Bernier
Cory Stillman-Steve Reinprecht-Radek Dvorak
Kenndal McArdle-Scott Timmins-Michael Grabner
Triston Grant-Marty Reasoner-Byron Bitz

Defense
Jason Garrison-Erik Gudbranson
Keaton Ellerby-Mike Weaver
Nathan Paetsch-Joe Callahan

Goalies
Scott Clemmensen
Jacob Markstrom

6:30 p.m.: It's getting close to game-time, as fans are starting to filter into the Garden and the Bruins and Panthers are just about to take the ice for warm-ups.

We'll have the line combinations for you as soon as they run through the lines.

1:45 p.m.: It's been a busy day at the Garden already, and game time is still more than five hours away.

The Bruins will play their first home game of the preseason against the Panthers on Saturday, a return to the Garden that has players and fans alike excited.

"It's always exciting to play games at home," said Bruins captain Zdeno Chara. "I'm sure there's going to be a lot of fans coming to the game. They're very excited, as we are, so I'm sure it's going to be a good game."

Most of the talk in the locker room after the morning skate centered on the return of Marc Savard, who is back with the team but won't be back on the ice for an indefinite amount of time as he struggles with post-concussion syndrome symptoms.

Savard met with the media for the first time in camp to discuss his condition. He also talked about the trade rumors involving his name that kept cropping up all summer, while his teammates weighed in with their support for him in his recovery process.

As for the game itself, Tuukka Rask was the first off the ice after the morning skate, indicating he'll likely get the start in net for this one.

The most interesting thing to watch might be the battle for the third-line center spot. With Savard out indefinitely and Tyler Seguin, who will make his Garden debut with the varsity in this one, currently playing on the wing, there's an opening in the middle. Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci have the top two spots locked down and Greg Campbell is penciled in as the fourth-line center, but the other spot is up for grabs.

Bruins coach Claude Julien has been looking at using Blake Wheeler in the middle this preseason. Wheeler and youngsters Zach Hamill and Joe Colborne won't be playing Saturday, but Ryan Spooner, Jamie Arniel and Max Sauve will be in the lineup, and they are in contention for that spot as well.
 
"There's a lot of guys right now that could be going for that position," said Julien. "We include Wheeler in there. He's played center before. We have Hamill, Colborne. Arniel is one of those guys that plays center and wing. We've got to look at all those players here in the next little while. Spooner is playing tonight. We'll get another look at him and see where we go from there."

The Bruins also announced some more cuts, assigning Jeff LoVecchio and Matt Dalton to Providence and placing Jeremy Reich, Wyatt Smith and Nathan McIver on waivers. If they clear, they will also be assigned to Providence.

8 a.m.: Hockey action is back at the Garden.

After splitting their first two preseason games on the road, the Bruins open their home exhibition slate with a rematch against Florida on Saturday night. The Panthers handed the B's a 3-2 loss in Rochester, N.Y., on Thursday, which came on the heels of an impressive 4-2 Boston win in Montreal on Wednesday.

The Bruins are expected to have top prospect Tyler Seguin in the lineup. It will be his first NHL game in Boston, but he'll have plenty of experience flanking him as he skated on a line with veterans Patrice Bergeron and Mark Recchi in practice on Friday. Nathan Horton is also expected to make his Garden debut as a Bruin against his old club. He'll have some new linemates for the occasion after skating with Milan Lucic and David Krejci on Friday.

That Bruins' lineup will look for a start more along the lines of Wednesday's game against the Canadiens, when Boston jumped all over the Habs and scored four goals on just nine shots on Carey Price. They didn't have the same success on Tomas Vokoun on Thursday, but it looks like they won't have to worry about him in this one.

According to the Miami Herald, Vokoun won't be dressed for this one. Neither will former Bruin Dennis Wideman, who scored the game-winner on Thursday, but ex-Bruins Byron Bitz and Marty Reasoner are expected to play, as are Brockton, Mass., native Joe Callahan and former Boston College goalie Scott Clemmensen.

The game won't be the only important event at the Garden on Saturday, as injured center Marc Savard is scheduled to speak with the media for the first time this preseason in the morning. The game starts at 7 p.m., so check back throughout the day and during the contest for updates on all the action.

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