Panthers Vs. Devils Final Score, NHL Playoffs 2012 Game 5: Florida Takes Series Lead To New Jersey

Jose Theodore put in his best performance of the playoffs with a shutout on Saturday night, helping the Florida Panthers to a 3-0 win over the New Jersey Devils. In front of the biggest crowd in the history of the franchise, Theodore was perfect while the players in front of him did enough to earn the win.

After a scoreless first period, Kris Versteeg broke the deadlock in the second period with a one-time power play goal. its lead late in the game.

Shawn Matthias and Versteeg did a spectacular job to win 50-50 battles to set up the goal, first in the neutral zone and then down low. Martin Brodeur made a terrible decision to come back and get the puck during the sequence and he was beaten to it by Versteeg, who set up Scottie Upshall for the empty net goal to make it 2-0.

Erik Gudbranson committed a penalty late to give the Devils a way back into the game, and they pulled Brodeur in an effort to try to pull back two goals quickly. They weren't successful and got caught out by a Tomas Kopecky breakaway. He was hooked and would have been given a penalty shot if Brodeur was in, but because there was an empty net, a goal was awarded to round out the 3-0 Panthers win.

For more on the Panthers, please visit Litter Box Cats and SB Nation Tampa Bay. For everything Devils, head on over to In Lou We Trust and SB Nation New York. For complete coverage of the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs, stay tuned to SB Nation's dedicated NHL hub.

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