Detroit Red Wings wilt under Florida heat in 5-2 loss to Panthers

SUNRISE, Fla. — The Detroit Red Wings gave themselves a shot, but the Florida Panthers showed why they’re the ones chasing the Presidents’ Trophy. 

They scored three times in 10 minutes Thursday at FLA Live Arena and the best the Wings could do was keep it close for two periods. They wound up losing, 5-2.

Sam Gagner scored the first goal and Tyler Bertuzzi pulled the Wings within 4-2. Pius Suter assisted both times. The Wings had to play with a short bench after Oskar Sundqvist was assessed a major penalty and game misconduct for slashing in the opening minute of the third period. Sam Reinhart scored during the power play to put the Panthers up by three goals. 

The Wings (30-38-10) next play Saturday when they take on the Pittsburgh Penguins in the final game this season at Little Caesars Arena. 

Florida Panthers left wing Mason Marchment scores a goal in the first period past Detroit Red Wings goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic as defenseman Moritz Seider (53) and left wing Lucas Raymond (23) defend during the first period at FLA Live Arena, April 21, 2022.

Gagner’s output

The Wings took the lead four minutes into the game. Marc Staal fired a pass that Suter picked up in the neutral zone. He attempted to pass the puck to Gagner, only a defender got a stick on it, so Suter regained possession and entered Florida’s zone and wired a pass to Gagner, whose shot from the slot fluttered under Sergei Bobrovsky’s glove. Gagner moved up to play on the second line with Suter and Jakub Vrana because Filip Zadina (illness) missed the game. It was Gagner’s 13th goal — a nice return on a guy making $850,000.

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