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Jokinen scores two third-period goals to lead Panthers past Islanders 8-5

The Canadian Press
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The Hockey News
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Jokinen scores two third-period goals to lead Panthers past Islanders 8-5

The Canadian Press
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Jokinen scored two third-period goals in 1:01 to help the Florida Panthers beat the New York Islanders 8-5 on Saturday night. Jokinen also had four assists.

Ville Peltonen also scored two goals for the Panthers, and Rostislav Olesz, Gregory Campbell, Juraj Kolnik and Jozef Stumpel had one apiece. Ed Belfour stopped 28 shots.

Mike Sillinger and Ryan Smyth scored two goals apiece, and Marc-Andre Bergeron added a score for New York. Mike Dunham had 27 saves for the Islanders in making his second consecutive start, both losses, in place of the injured Rick DiPietro. The Islanders have given up 18 goals in the past three games, all losses.

"We've been spoiled by having a premier goaltender," Islanders coach Ted Nolan said. "Before we were stopping most of those shots.

"Now, they're winding up in the back of the net."

Jokinen put Florida ahead 5-4 with a wraparound goal at 6:04 of the third. His second goal of the period came at 7:05 with a shot from the right circle that beat Dunham and gave Florida a 6-4 lead.

"We were able to bounce back every time they scored," Jokinen said. "I'd rather take a 2-1 win and play better defence.

"It was a wide-open game and both teams had a lot of chances. It's still two points."

Smyth's goal from in front at 17:02 pulled the Islanders to 6-5. Empty-net goals in the final minute by Stumpel and Peltonen rounded out the scoring.

The Islanders tied it 4-4 during a power play when Bergeron's shot from above the right circle went over Belfour's right shoulder at 5:16 of the third.

Kolnik gave Florida a 4-3 lead in the second. He picked up a rebound in front of the crease and pushed it past Dunham at 7:59.

There were six goals in the first, three by each team.

Sillinger's second power-play goal of the game gave the Islanders a 3-2 lead at 16:56. Florida tied the game 3-3 when Campbell's shot from the left circle went in at 17:31.

"Anytime you score five goals, it should be enough to win," Sillinger said. "Our entire defence has to be better.

"It hurts not having Rick (DiPietro) in there, but we have to buckle down defensively."

Florida tied it 2-2 on Peltonen's goal at 15:54. Peltonen skated in on Dunham and tucked the puck just inside the corner of the net.

Sillinger's power-play goal at 13:00 gave the Islanders a 2-1 lead. His shot from the left circle got by Belfour, who was out in front of the crease.

New York tied the score 1-1 on Smyth's first goal at 10:50 of the first.

Florida scored 1:54 into the game. A shot by Jokinen hit the post and bounced out to the slot. Olesz picked up the loose puck and beat Dunham on the stick side to make the score 1-0.

"It was a hard-fought game but we battled hard and kept coming," Panthers coach Jacques Martin said. "We deserved to win."

Belfour made his 23rd consecutive start for Florida, breaking the franchise record set by Roberto Luongo, who is now with Vancouver.

Notes: DiPietro missed his second straight start with a stiff neck. ... Dunham made his second start in goal since Feb.1. ... Belfour began his consecutive games streak on Jan. 20, and is 23-16-8 this season.

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Jokinen scores two third-period goals to lead Panthers past Islanders 8-5