SUNRISE (CBSMiami/AP) — Let’s go cats!!! Aleksander Barkov scored his 38th goal of the season and the Florida Panthers tied a franchise record with their 12th straight win, beating the Detroit Red Wings 5-2 on Thursday night.
Mason Marchment had a goal and an assist, and Sam Reinhart, MacKenzie Weegar and Noel Acciari also scored for the Eastern Conference-leading Panthers, who moved two points ahead of West-leading Colorado in the race for the best record in the NHL. Florida (118 points) and the Avalanche have four games remaining.
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The Panthers matched the 12-game winning streak it posted from Dec. 15, 2015, to Jan. 10, 2016.
Jonathan Huberdeau had two assists and moved into a tie with Connor McDavid of idle Edmonton for the league lead in points at 113. Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 28 shots for the Panthers.
Tyler Bertuzzi and Sam Gagner scored for Detroit, and Alex Nedeljkovic stopped 22 shots.
The Red Wings closed within 3-2 when Bertuzzi’s shot from the right circle got past Bobrovsky with 13:45 left in the second, but the Panthers moved ahead 4-2 after Weegar poked the puck in from the slot with 3:55 left in the second. Reinhart scored a power-play goal at 3:50 of the third to stretch the Panthers’ lead to 5-2.
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The Panthers scored three goals on seven shots in the first period.
After Gagner’s wrist shot went under Bobrovsky’s glove to give the Red Wings a 1-0 lead at 4:08, Acciari tied the score 1-all on a shot from the low slot at 9:19.
Barkov’s power-play goal, his 38th of the season, came on a blast from the high slot with 1:07 left to give the Panthers a 2-1 lead. Then, Marchment’s shot deflected off a defender and into the net with 21 seconds left to make it 3-1.
Up next, the Panthers host Toronto on Saturday.
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