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Florida Panthers, after huge third-period push to tie score, get nipped by Vancouver Canucks in final five minutes

SUNRISE — Andrei Kuzmenko scored the go-ahead goal with 4:57 left to help the Vancouver Canucks beat the Florida Panthers 5-3 on Saturday night.

Quinn Hughes, Carson Soucy, Elias Pettersson and Brock Boeser also scored for Vancouver, which snapped a two-game losing streak. Casey DeSmith made 33 saves.

Sam Reinhart scored two third-period goals to rally the Panthers from a 3-1 deficit into a 3-3 tie with 5:59 left. Aleksander Barkov also scored for Florida while Evan Rodrigues picked up two assists. Sergei Bobrovsky made 26 saves.

Hughes opened the scoring for Vancouver with a quick shot from the point on the power play with 9:51 to go in the first. Barkov tied it 20 seconds later, beating DeSmith with a backhand shot on a breakaway.

Soucy walked into the slot and beat Bobrovsky with a wrist shot on the power play with 9:19 to go in the second. Pettersson extended the lead to 3-1 less than a minute later, sending a shot through traffic off of a backhand feed from Kuzmenko.

Reinhart and Rodrigues teamed up for both Florida goals in the third, before Kuzemko scored off a rebound to put Vancouver up for good. Panthers forward Steven Lorentz crashed into Bobrovsky, leaving him unable to contest the shot.

Boeser sealed the game with an empty-net goal with 2:10 left.


F Ilya Mikheyev picked up an assist in his season debut for the Canucks. He played for the first time since a knee injury in January. … The Panthers continue to be without C Sam Bennett, still out with a lower-body injury. Florida is hoping he can play Tuesday. … Panthers D Oliver Ekman-Larsson played against the Canucks for the first time since they bought out his contract in July. The $19.3 million buyout was the fifth-most expensive in NHL history.


Panthers: Host San Jose on Tuesday night.

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