Huberdeau, Barkov Return To Lead Panthers Over Ducks, 2-1

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SUNRISE (AP) — Jonathan Huberdeau scored his first goal of the season to lift the Florida Panthers over the Anaheim Ducks 2-1 on Friday night.

Reilly Smith also scored for the Panthers, and Aleksander Barkov had an assist in his return to the lineup after missing 15 games due to injury. James Reimer stopped 22 shots.

Huberdeau’s goal during 4-on-4 play with 4:58 left in the second period broke a 1-all tie. Barkov passed from the left circle across to Huberdeau in the slot and he shot the puck high into the net.

Hampus Lindholm scored for Anaheim, and John Gibson made 35 saves.

Huberdeau had been out all season following surgery to repair an Achilles tendon injury sustained Oct. 8 in the final preseason game against New Jersey. It was his first goal since April 9.

Huberdeau had a career-high 20 goals and 59 points last season.

Barkov was leading the team with 27 points (nine goals) in 36 games when he injured his back early in a 3-2 overtime loss to Toronto on Dec. 28.

Lindholm gave the Ducks a 1-0 lead during 4-on-4 play when his shot from the point got past Reimer at 9:39 of the first.

The Panthers tied it 13 seconds later after Jason Demers passed to Smith in front and the puck bounced off his skate and into the net.

The Ducks killed off a 5-on-3 power play for 1:55 midway through the second period as Gibson stopped five shots.

NOTES: The Ducks opened a six-game road trip that ends Feb. 14 at Minnesota. … Ducks D Sami Vatanen left in the third period with a lower-body injury. … D Shea Theodore was recalled from AHL San Diego. … Panthers forward Paul Thompson has been assigned to AHL Springfield.

UP NEXT

Ducks: Visit the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday.

Panthers: Host the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday.

(© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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