The Winnipeg Jets and Florida Panthers will meet in Sunrise for the second time in four days on Friday night, with the two Southeast Division clubs coming off vastly different results the previous night.
The Panthers will welcome the Jets for the fourth of five meetings this season and it will be the last time the clubs play in Florida. Winnipeg will host the season series finale on April 11.
Florida has gone 2-0-1 versus Winnipeg this season, winning twice at home around an overtime loss on the road. That includes a a 4-1 victory on Tuesday as rookie Jonathan Huberdeau was one of four different goal-scorers for the Panthers, while Jacob Markstrom made 20 saves for his first win of the season.
Markstrom failed to build off that win on Thursday, getting pulled against the Washington Capitals after giving up two goals on just two shots faced early in the first. The Panthers never recovered and dropped an ugly 7-1 decision.
"I couldn't stop the puck on the first two shots. (There's) no excuse for that," said Markstrom, who was pulled 3:10 into the game. "It was terrible. I feel like I let the team down. I am there to stop pucks and I didn't do that tonight."
Scott Clemmensen yielded another two goals in the first period as Florida found itself down 4-0 just 8:10 in. He was charged with five goals on 24 shots in relief and Jack Skille finally got the Panthers on the board with 9:11 to play.
Florida has lost four of its past five and has an NHL-low seven wins on the season.
Winnipeg's loss on Tuesday, which saw Ondrej Pavelec give up all four goals on 20 shots, opened a four-game road trip and the Jets were able to rebound with Thursday's solid 2-1 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Bryan Little scored the deciding goal with 4:08 to play as the Jets won for the sixth time in their past nine games. They also picked up only their second win in their last 11 trips to Tampa.
Al Montoya made 28 saves in his first action since Feb. 12. He made 12 saves in the opening period and has won all three of his starts this season. He also helped Winnipeg kill off a two-minute 5-on-3 Lightning power play in the second period.
"For us the turning point of the game was the 5-on-3, for a full two minutes," Jets head coach Claude Noel said. "It was a key kill, guys made big sacrifices, didn't give them many shots or good looks so it was good."
Eric Tangradi had the other goal of the Jets, the second of his career and first since Oct. 15, 2010 while with the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Pavelec has been in net for all three games versus the Panthers this season, yielding 11 goals on 78 shots for a 3.58 goals against average. He is 8-4-1 against them lifetime with a 2.70 GAA and .911 save percentage, while Montoya is 1-1-0 against them in three games (2 starts) with a 1.30 GAA.
Markstrom's start versus the Jets on Tuesday marked the first time he faced the club over 12 NHL appearances. Clemmensen has gone 3-3-2 with a 2.46 GAA against them in 10 games and seven starts, including the loss in Winnipeg on Feb. 5.