SUNRISE, Fla. – Tomas Vokoun keeps getting better.
Gregory Campbell scored midway through the second period and Vokoun made 27 saves in the Florida Panthers’ 1-0 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers on Monday night. Vokoun earned his fifth shutout of the season and won for the fifth time in his last seven home starts. Vokoun has made 101 saves in the last three games, all Panthers victories. Florida is on its fourth three-game winning streak of the season.
“If we want to go anywhere we have to string some wins together and hopefully keep this thing rolling,” Vokoun said.
Vokoun stopped 14 shots in the final period.
“He’s been outstanding all year and he’s been very, very good lately,” Panthers coach Peter DeBoer said. “He’s in a real groove and he’s given us a lot of confidence. That’s been a part of us holding leads. We know we’re going to get a big save at the right time, and he did that again tonight.”
Johan Hedberg stopped 23 shots for Atlanta, which lost for the third time in six games.
Campbell scored his second goal of the season at 7:18 of the middle period when he backhanded in a shot from the left circle. Hedberg was screened by Florida’s Rostislav Olesz, and the puck slid past the goalie and into the net.
“There were a couple of guys in front, and I was just trying to fight for position,” Hedberg said. “I didn’t see the puck. I lost it for a second, and unfortunately that’s when he started it toward the net. It hit both my legs, I think, but it found a way in. It was a good screen in front, and he shot it at absolutely the right time.”
Jason Garrison earned an assist, his first career NHL point in 17 games. Campbell’s other goal this season was scored on Jan. 13 against Washington.
“I wasn’t thinking much, just get the puck on net,” Campbell said. “Sometimes it’s as simple as that.”
Atlanta’s Ilya Kovalchuk, who came into the game with three goals and three assists in three games, was held without a point. The Thrashers had a 6-on-4 skating advantage for the final 1:19, but couldn’t tie it against Vokoun.
The Thrashers took 14 shots in the final period after recording a total of 13 in the previous two frames.
“Good effort? Yeah, but without goals, you get no points,” Kovalchuk said. “So what’s the difference?”
NOTES: Florida called up forwards Shawn Matthias and Jeff Taffe from AHL Rochester, and both players were in the lineup. Forward Steve MacIntyre was sent back to Rochester. … Panthers C Stephen Weiss (lower body injury) sat out. He left Saturday’s game against Tampa Bay after five minutes, and is listed as day to day. … Atlanta will play three of its next four at home.