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Josh Norris, Senators blast Panthers 8-2

Sportsnaut
Dec 14, 2021; Sunrise, Florida, USA; Ottawa Senators right wing Connor Brown (28) battles Florida Panthers center Sam Bennett (9) for the puck during the first period at FLA Live Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 14, 2021; Sunrise, Florida, USA; Ottawa Senators right wing Connor Brown (28) battles Florida Panthers center Sam Bennett (9) for the puck during the first period at FLA Live Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Josh Norris scored two goals, including the go-ahead tally, as the Ottawa Senators hammered the top home team in the NHL, beating the Florida Panthers 8-2 on Tuesday night in Sunrise, Fla.

Anton Forsberg made 33 saves to win his fifth straight game. Ottawa also got two goals from Nick Paul and one each from Austin Watson, Dylan Gambrell, Tim Stutzle and Drake Batherson.

Norris, Batherson, Paul and Connor Brown all had three-point games.

Florida, which dropped to 14-2-0 at home, got goals from Jonathan Huberdeau and Sam Reinhart, and 30 saves from rookie goalie Spencer Knight. Reinhart added an assist.

This was just the third time this season that Florida lost by more than one goal. The eight goals are the most allowed by the Panthers all season.

Ottawa improved to 4-7-1 on the road as the Senators have won three straight games away from home.

Florida got top-six forward Anthony Duclair back from an eight-game injury absence, but he did not register a point and was minus-two.

The Panthers were without forward Ryan Lomberg (COVID protocol) and defenseman Gustav Forsling (non-COVID illness). Panthers captain Aleksander Barkov (injured reserve) remains out.

Ottawa started fast with the first nine shots on goal, grabbing a 1-0 lead with 4:38 expired on Watson’s rebound goal that beat Knight five-hole.

Florida tied the score 1-1 with 13:05 gone as Reinhart skated behind the goal before feeding Huberdeau in the slot.

Just 1:30 into the second, Ottawa took a 2-1 lead on Gambrell’s breakaway, shorthanded goal. The play started when Brandon Montour couldn’t handle a Frank Vatrano pass. Brown got the loose puck and fed it ahead to Gambrell, whose shot went under Knight’s glove.

Florida tied the score 2-2 with 15:33 expired in the second. After an Ottawa turnover, Reinhart stuffed in a rebound off Anton Lundell’s shot.

Ottawa took a 3-2 lead just 39 seconds later on Norris’ goal that bounced in off the left post. Play kept going for 34 seconds before the horn sounded to indicate that it was actually a goal, due to a remote video review from NHL headquarters.

The Senators struck again before the end of the period as Stutzle rung one in off the right post. Ottawa got that goal by dumping the puck in and forcing a turnover.

Norris made it 5-2 just 23 seconds into the third, scoring on the rush.

Knight’s poor clear attempt led to Batherson’s goal and a 6-2 Senators lead with 13:50 left in the third.

Paul added a pair of 5-on-3 power-play goals to close the scoring.

–Field Level Media