December 16, 2018 / 3:28 AM / 5 months ago

Panthers' Barkov notches first hat trick in game-winning fashion

EditorsNote: Fixes Andersen’s saves total

Florida’s Aleksander Barkov recorded his first career hat trick, including the overtime game-winner, to lift the Panthers to a 4-3 win over the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday night.

Barkov roofed a backhander with 1:36 left in overtime after a steal led to a 2-on-1 break on Toronto goalie Frederik Andersen.

Jonathan Huberdeau had a goal and an assist, Mike Hoffman added a pair of helpers, and the Panthers scored twice on the power play and denied Toronto a goal on the man advantage.

The Panthers’ victory snapped a four-game losing streak that saw the club calling up players from AHL affiliate Springfield in an effort to shake up the lineup and get a win for the first time since Dec. 4.

Mitchell Marner scored twice, and John Tavares added a goal for the Maple Leafs, who scored three times in the third period to tie the game.

Florida goalie Roberto Luongo stopped 29 shots as he improved to 23-11-1 against the Maple Leafs in his career. Andersen recorded 29 saves.

Florida center Henrik Borgstrom, who played four games last season, made his season debut, and AHL teammate right winger Jayce Hawryluk played in his first NHL game.

In the waning seconds of the first period, the Panthers had three forwards around Andersen’s cage. Hoffman slid a pass through the crease to Evgenii Dadonov, who popped it back across the blue paint to Barkov for his 12th goal with just four seconds left on the clock.

After Toronto’s Kasperi Kapanen returned from the dressing room after a big hit from Troy Brouwer, then went off for hooking in the second period, Huberdeau beat Andersen at 8:03 to make it 2-0.

Toronto wasted a major opportunity when it failed to score on a four-minute double-minor penalty by Florida and another power play late in the period, producing just three shots in six minutes with the man advantage.

However, Tavares made it 2-1 when he deflected in his 20th goal at 10:24, and Marner tied it at 2-2 at 16:21 during a flurry of shots on Luongo.

Barkov and Marner traded goals to tie it 3-3 late in the period.

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