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Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Rapid Reaction: Panthers 3, Hawks 2

By Jesse Rogers

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Here's a quick look at Florida's 3-2 over the Hawks on Tuesday.

How it happened: It all came back to a sloppy and lethargic first period. The Hawks gave up all three goals, turning the puck over and misfiring on passes while Corey Crawford played his worst period in some time. He was pulled after one and that’s when the Hawks went to work. They got goals from Patrick Kane and Marian Hossa to get themselves back in it in the second period. But despite a furious attack in the third, they couldn’t manage to tie the game. They outshot Florida 39 to 15. The Panthers had only seven shots in the final two periods.

What it means: The Hawks’ eight-game win streak comes to an end, and there’s no doubt that it was due to a poorly played first period. The Hawks built their streak largely on strong play from Crawford, but he wasn’t in that form in Tuesday. Marty Turco deserves some credit for keeping the Hawks in this one after he replaced Crawford. The Hawks played very well in the final two periods. The reality is their putrid first period was too much to overcome.

What’s next: The Hawks take a quick flight to Tampa Bay after the game for a Wednesday matchup with the Lightning. Tampa Bay has been an elite team in the Eastern Conference all season but has been slumping lately, going 3-4-3 in their last 10 games.