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Panthers top Predators in shootout
Sunrise, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Tomas Kopecky scored in the sixth round of the shootout to lift the Florida Panthers over the Nashville Predators, 5-4, on Saturday.
Kopecky also scored in regulation for the Panthers, who went 2-2-1 on a five- game homestand. Brad Boyes and Marcel Goc each had a goal and an assist.
Florida defenseman Ed Jovanovski made his season debut. He played for the first time since March due to hip surgery.
Tim Thomas stopped 38-of-42 shots for the victors.
Craig Smith, Mike Fisher, Seth Jones and Paul Gaustad scored for the Predators, who have lost two in a row. Marek Mazanec made 25 saves.
Trailing 4-2, the Predators scored two goals in the final 5:08 of regulation. Jones made it a one-goal game at 14:52 with a blistering wrist shot from the high slot that beat Thomas.
Gaustad tied it with 47.1 seconds left after Mazanec was pulled for an extra attacker. He put home a rebound following Shea Weber's shot from the point.
Smith started the scoring 6:32 into the game when he found a loose puck in front and beat Thomas.
Boyes poked home a loose puck at 11:03 to make it 1-1.
Kopecky gave the Panthers a 2-1 lead at 17:56. Goc's shot hit the outside of the net from a sharp angle and the puck ended up on the stick of Kopecky, who chipped the disc past Mazanec.
Fisher's one-timer at the 16:32 mark of the middle stanza made it 2-2.
Sean Bergenheim lit the lamp from the bottom of the right circle at 17:29
Goc made it 4-2 Florida at 1:34 of the third period after Jonathan Huberdeau picked off an errant pass from Jones behind the Nashville net and slid a pass in front for Goc.
Nashville had won two straight against the Panthers ... Florida forward Scottie Upshall returned to the lineup after sitting out three games with an upper-body injury ... Each team went 0-for-2 on the power play.
01/04 22:37:18 ET