Thursday, March 4, 2010

Heat Edge Lakers In Overtime

The Miami Heat held off the defending NBA Champion Los Angeles Lakers 114-111 in overtime on Thursday night at American Airlines Arena. It was a measure of revenge for the Heat against the Lakers following a loss earlier this season at the Staples Center that was capped by a three-point winning shot by Kobe Bryant over Dwyane Wade with no time remaining. The game was generally close throughtout the game with a league-high 31 lead changes, Miami's biggest lead was nine points. Wade had 27 points and 14 assists while Quentin Richardson added a season-high 25 points, including seven three-pointers, and Carlos Arroyo got a season-high 17 points for the Heat. Miami held a 92-84 lead with under four minutes remaining in regulation until the Lakers went on a 13-4 run to take the lead 97-96 with 0:42 left. Following a Richardson three-pointer at 11.1, Bryant hit a 13-foot fadeaway over Wade to tie the game with three seconds left to send it into overtime. Udonis Haslem nailed a 12-foot baseline jumper with 37.3 seconds to hold onto the victory. Kobe Bryant had a game-high 39 points as the Lakers lost for the fifth time in the last six games at Miami since the Shaquille O'Neal-Lamar Odom trade in 2004.

Panthers Stop Losing Streak Against Flyers

The Florida Panthers snapped their season-long seven game losing streak as they defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 7-3 at the Bank Atlantic Center on Wednesday night. The Panthers began strong in the first period outshooting the Flyers 14-6 and getting tallies from Steven Reinprecht at 7:12 and by Michael Frolik on the power play at 18:16, both getting their 14th goals this season. Both teams combined for seven goals in the second period. Danny Briere cut the lead on a power play goal eight minutes in. David Booth responded scoring in his second straight game, his fourth this year at 12:04. The Flyers bounced back 12 seconds later on a Jeff Carter power play goal. Florida then got three goals in five minutes to increase the lead to 6-3. Jason Garrison picked up his first NHL goal at 12:40, followed by a Stephen Weiss power play goal, his team-high 23rd, at 15:01 and Frolik's second goal of the game at 17:40. For the second time this season the Panthers scored seven goals in a game, the other time was on the road against the New York Islanders on December 14. Due to the recent transactions by the team, coach Peter Deboer used only five defensemen throughout the entire game.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Seidenberg Traded To Boston

The Florida Panthers traded defenseman Dennis Seidenberg and college prospect Matthew Bartowski to the Boston Bruins for right wing Byron Bitz, minor leaguer Criag Weller and a second-round draft pick. Seidenberg, who recently played for Germany during the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver, had two goals with 21 assists in 62 games for his only season with the Panthers. He is an unresticted free agent after the season. Bitz has played two seasons in his NHL career and had four goals and five assists in 45 games with the Bruins in 2009-10.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Panthers Fall Short In Atlanta

The Florida Panthers returned back to action for the first time in over two weeks due to the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. The team visited Atlanta and were defeated by the Thrashers 4-2 on Tuesday night. Scott Clemmensen started in net for the first time since December 27 against the Boston Bruins, making 35 saves. Tomas Vokoun, who had played in the last 21 consecutive games for the Panthers and five games for the Czech Republic during the olympics, was given a day of rest by coach Peter Deboer. After a slow start, the Panthers were down 2-0 four minutes into the game. Stephen Weiss put in a power-play goal almost six minutes into the game, his 22nd goal of the season. David Booth tied the game midway through the first period with his third goal of the year, his first tally since coming back from a concussion injury that sidelined him for 45 games. Atlanta got second-period goals by Todd White and Pavel Kubina to hold on to the win. The Panthers host the Philadelphia Flyers on Wednesday night at the Bank Atlantic Center in Sunrise. The NHL trade deadline is at 3PM on Wednesday.

Heat End Losing Streak

The Miami Heat snapped a four-game losing streak by defeating the Golden State Warriors 110-106 at American Airlines Arena on Tuesday night. Dwyane Wade led the Heat scoring a game-high 35 points with 12 assists, six rebounds and four steals in the victory. Carlos Arroyo came off the bench and added a season-high 14 points along with five assists and five rebounds as Miami improved to 30-31. The Heat are now a half-game ahead of the Charlotte Bobcats for the number eight seed in the Eastern Conference. Their next game is at home on Thursday night against the defending NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers led by Kobe Bryant which will be shown on TNT.

Former Panthers Win Olympic Medals

Five former Florida Panther players won medals at the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver this past weekend. Goalie Roberto Luongo led Canada to the gold medal with a 3-2 overtime win over the United States in the final game. He went 5-0 which included single-elimination victories in the final four games of the tournament. Defensemen Dan Boyle also received a gold medal for Canada. Center Ollie Jokinen picked up a bronze medal for Finland along with left wingers Nikolas Hagman and Ville Peltonen. Jokinen, the former Panthers captain, scored the tying and game-winning goal for the Fins in the third period of the bronze medal game coming back from a 3-1 defecit.