Panthers further prove they are no joke

Associated Press  |  Last updated March 15, 2012
Jose Theodore stopped 24 shots and the Florida Panthers scored three second-period goals to beat the Boston Bruins 6-2 on Thursday night. Wojtek Wolski, Tomas Kopecky, John Madden, Stephen Weiss, Marcel Goc and Mikael Samuelsson scored for the Panthers. Brian Campbell had three assists. Florida has won three straight games and increased its lead in the Southeast Division to three points ahead of idle Washington. The Panthers got their first four-game home winning streak since a five-game run Jan. 16-31, 2010. Brian Rolston and Joe Corvo scored, and Tim Thomas made 23 saves for the Bruins, who gave up six goals for the second straight game. The Bruins have lost four straight and six of their last eight. They last lost four straight in regulation during a five-game skid on Jan. 18-29, 2010. Leading 1-0, Florida outscored Boston 3-1 in the second period. The Panthers went ahead 2-0 on a goal by Goc 38 seconds into the period. Brian Campbell took a shot from just inside the blue line. Goc redirected the puck with his stick into the net. The Bruins closed to 2-1 after Corvo scored a goal on a slap shot from the left circle at 4:53 of the second. The puck went through the air the whole way and over Theodore's shoulder. The Panthers went ahead 3-1 on Weiss's second-period goal, his first in eight games. Tomas Fleischmann's shot from the right of the crease was blocked but Weiss swept in the rebound at 6:32. Florida stretched its lead to 4-1 on Madden's goal, his first of the season. The puck went off the top of Madden's stick and into the net with 4:33 to go. Boston made it 4-2 on Rolston's power-play goal early in the third. His shot from the right circle went past Theodore at 1:44. Kopecky's goal at 7:51 of the third put the Panthers back ahead by three goals. He poked in the puck from in front to make it 5-2. Wolski added a goal with 2:26 left to make it 6-2. The Panthers took a 1-0 lead on a power-play goal by Samuelsson in the first. Samuelsson took a pass from Brian Campbell at the top of the right circle. His slap shot got past Thomas with 2:03 remaining. Notes: Florida F Kris Versteeg, tied with Tomas Fleischmann as the team's leading scorer in goals (22), missed his ninth consecutive game with a lower-body injury. ... Boston D Andrew Ference played in his 700th NHL game. ... The Bruins are 1 for 15 on the power play over their last seven games.
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