NHL Game Summary - Atlanta at Florida
(Tuesday, April 18th)
Final Score: Florida 2, Atlanta 1 (OT)
Sunrise, FL (Sports Network) - Mike Van Ryn scored two goals, including the game-winner in overtime, as Florida downed Atlanta, 2-1, in the final game of the season for both clubs.
Roberto Luongo made 39 saves for the Panthers, who closed out the season with two wins in their last three games. Olli Jokinen had two assists in the victory.
Steve McCarthy scored the lone goal for the Thrashers, who were eliminated from playoff contention on Monday night with a 6-4 loss to Washington. Adam Berkhoel allowed two goals on 30 shots in the loss.
"That's as down as I've seen a hockey club," said Atlanta head coach Bob Hartley. "We've been riding them so hard in the last month and a half that they were drained. I think that's understandable because every game was like a playoff game for us."
Late in the third period, Marian Hossa took a roughing penalty that carried into the extra session. In overtime, Joe Nieuwendyk set up at the right half wall and centered the puck to a streaking Van Ryn, who ripped a one-timer past Berkhoel to win it for the Panthers.
"I guess it's a positive note but it's still disappointing," said Van Ryn. "We thought we were going to have a better season this year and it's nice to see we picked it up after the Olympic break. I think we're a much better team now than we were in September so we've got stuff to look forward to for next season."
The Thrashers made it a 1-0 game with 1:51 left in the opening period when McCarthy fluttered a snap shot from the left point that beat a screened Luongo low on his glove side.
Florida tied things up at 1-1 just 4:11 into the second stanza. Jokinen raced up the right wing and his centering pass in front was tipped by Van Ryn past Berkhoel.
Florida finished the regular season with a record of 37-34-11...Jokinen ended the campaign with 51 assists...Atlanta ended the season with a record of 41-33-8...Hossa registered 53 assists for the year.
04/18 23:19:36 ET