Florida at Nashville

Predators 4, Panthers 1


NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- J.P. Dumont found the perfect way to make up for his giveaway that led to a Florida goal late in the second period.

Dumont and David Legwand scored early in the third period, and Dan Ellis made 23 saves to help the Nashville Predators beat the Panthers 4-1 on Saturday night.

Dan Hamhuis and Joel Ward also scored for Nashville, coming off a 3-1 home loss to St. Louis on Friday night that snapped their winning streak at seven games.

Jordan Leopold scored for the Panthers. Florida has lost four in a row.

"Third periods have been our Achilles' heel this year," Leopold said. "We weren't sharp in the third period, it is as simple as that."

Dumont made it 2-1 68 seconds into the third period, scoring off a rebound. With goalie Scott Clemmensen down, Dumont kicked the rebound onto his backhand before lifting the puck high to the stick side for his fifth goal of the season.

"I knew I had time when I got the rebound," Dumont said. "I knew he was coming across and covering the bottom part of the net, and I just had to take my time. I had the top of the net wide open."

Just over four minutes later, Legwand gave Nashville a 3-1 lead.

Nashville's Jordin Tootoo sent a long pass from the neutral zone that Legwand was able to corral after fending off defenseman Bryan Allen. Legwand was then able to beat Clemmensen with a backhander between the pads.

"We had a really good second period, then we shot ourselves in the foot," Florida coach Peter DeBoer said. "We just can't afford to make mistakes like we made in the third period, it costs us games."

Hamhuis opened the scoring late in the opening period when his slap shot from the left point deflected off of Panthers center Kamil Kreps and past Clemmensen. The goal was Hamhuis' first of the season, and first since Feb. 12, a span of 47 games.

"I guess I can't lie, it's been on my mind," Hamhuis said. "Finally, tonight one got through and went in."

The Panthers tied it at 15:14 of the second period on Leopold's third goal of the season. An errant pass inside the Florida zone by Dumont sent the Panthers the other way on a 2-on-1. Leopold beat Dan Ellis high to the stick side with a slap shot.

"That turnover there was a busted up play, and they ended up scoring, giving them some momentum," Nashville coach Barry Trotz said. "It was good that one of our leadership group stepped up and was able to get that goal back."

Ellis made his first appearance since Nov. 10, finally giving starter Pekka Rinne a night off after he played Nashville's last eight games, winning seven of them.

"To get the win tonight was important for myself after sitting that long," Ellis said. "Our 'D' played outstanding tonight."

Ward capped the scoring with an empty-net goal.


Nashville RW Martin Erat played in his 500th career NHL game, all with the Predators. ... Tootoo has assists in Nashville's last four games, a career high. ... Legwand has a five-game points streak, matching his career high. ... Florida LW Kenndal McArdle left the game in the second period with a right arm injury immediately following his second fight of the game with Tootoo.
Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
Florida (10-11-4)0101
Nashville  (15-9-1) «1034
Three Stars
D. Hamhuis

Goals: 1
Assist(s): 1
J. Tootoo

Goals: 0
Assist(s): 1
D. Ellis

Saves: 23
Save Pct.: .958

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Scoring Summary
18:28Dan Hamhuis (1), Slap Shot, Unassisted.
15:14Jordan Leopold (3), Slap Shot. Assist: Weiss, Horton
01:08J.P. Dumont (5), Backhand Shot. Assist: Sullivan, Arnott
05:16David Legwand (5), Wrist Shot. Assist: Tootoo, Hamhuis
19:23Joel Ward (4), Empty Net. Assist: Klein, Ellis
Penalty Summary
06:26Seidenberg, 2 min, Delay of Game - Puck Over Glass
12:16Oreskovich, 2 min, Goaltender Interference
15:44Kulikov, 2 min, Boarding
02.0Tootoo, 5 min, Fighting
02.0McArdle, 5 min, Fighting
01:16Hamhuis, 2 min, Holding
08:00McArdle, 5 min, Fighting
08:00Tootoo, 5 min, Fighting
11:36Dumont, 2 min, Goaltender Interference
16:40Santorelli, 2 min, Hooking
01:54Kulikov, 2 min, Tripping
06:18Sullivan, 2 min, Hooking
17:18Erat, 2 min, Interference
Shots On Goal
Scott Clemmensen58:57253
Dan Ellis59:55231
Game Information
Attendance - 14120
Referees - Brad Meier, Steve Kozari
Linesmen - Mark Pare, Brad Lazarowich
Other Games
TB 3 Final
Dal 4
Cal 4 Final
Colu 3
Chi 1 Final
LA 2
NYI 1 Final
NJ 6
Phi 0 Final
Atl 1
Ott 3 Final
Bos 4
Wash 4 Final
Mon 3
Det 4 Final
StL 3
Car 1 Final
Buf 5
Min 3 Final
Colo 2
NYR 3 Final
Pitt 8
Edm 3 Final
Van 7