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NHL Game Summary - Florida at Tampa Bay

(Wednesday, December 31st)

Final Score: Florida 2, Tampa Bay 2

Tampa, FL (Sports Network) - Roberto Luongo made 40 saves for Florida and Tampa Bay's Nikolai Khabibulin countered with 30, as the Panthers and Lightning skated to a 2-2 tie at the St. Pete Times Forum.

Viktor Kozlov and Mike Van Ryn scored for the Panthers, who have played to ties in their last two games and are unbeaten in three straight (1-0-2).

Brad Richards and Cory Stillman netted power-play goals for Tampa Bay, which has just two wins in its last 11 (2-7-2).

A scoreless third period belonged to the goaltenders, particularly Luongo, who had to turn aside 18 shots. Khabibulin faced just seven.

Luongo made the best stop of the period with just over three minutes left. He turned aside a sharp-angle shot by Martin St. Louis, then made an incredible glove save on Vincent Lecavalier's point-blank rebound from the slot.

Each team had four shots in overtime.

The Lightning grabbed a 1-0 lead midway through the first period on a power- play goal by Richards. Dan Boyle fired a shot from the right circle that rang off the iron. The puck caromed into the left circle for Richards, who then rifled a shot home for his sixth goal of the season.

The Panthers tied it with just 1:20 left in the opening period. Kozlov carried the puck into the Tampa Bay zone along the right wing and ripped a shot from the circle over the glove of Khabibulin for his ninth goal.

Tampa Bay cashed in another power play at 6:44 of the second to regain a one- goal edge. Dave Andreychuk won a faceoff in the offensive zone and got the puck back to Stillman, who blasted a shot from the center point through a screen created by Andreychuk and past Luongo for his 12th goal.

Van Ryn's seventh goal of the season tied it for Florida just over 2 1/2 minutes later. Kristian Huselius sent the puck from the left point to the right point for Van Ryn, whose shot through traffic found its way past Khabibulin.

Game Notes

Stillman is tied for the team lead with 12 goals and leads all Tampa players with eight power-play goals...Tampa Bay scored on each of its two chances with the power play, while Florida cashed in its lone opportunity with the extra skater...The Panthers won the first meeting of the season, 4-0, in Sunrise.

12/31 17:42:08 ET

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