SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) — Carter Verhaeghe scored his second goal of the night 1:37 into overtime and the Florida Panthers overcame a late two-goal deficit to beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 5-4 on Thursday night.

Aaron Ekblad scored the two late goals to get Florida into overtime, and Verhaeghe finished it off moments after Sergei Bobrovsky stoned Evan Rodrigues on a breakaway. Bobrovsky made 43 saves for Florida, which also got a goal from Anthony Duclair.

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Aleksander Barkov had two assists for the Panthers. They have won eight consecutive times when playing their season-opener on home ice.

Jeff Carter got the 400th goal of his career for Pittsburgh. Jake Guentzel scored from behind the net for Pittsburgh, which also got goals from Danton Heinen and Rodrigues along with 34 saves from Casey DeSmith.

Carter’s goal made him the seventh active player with 400 in the NHL, plus was one of two where the Penguins caught a break off a Florida defenseman. He threw the puck toward the net from the right-wing boards, and it deflected off Ekblad’s stick past Bobrovsky.

That made it 2-2 late in the second, and Guentzel’s goal came after Bobrovsky made an initial stop but was caught to the left of his crease. Guentzel tapped the puck out front, and it hit Panthers defenseman MacKenzie Weegar before finding the net. That made it 3-2, and Rodrigues scored 30 seconds later to give the Penguins a two-goal lead midway through the third.

And then Ekblad happened.

Off a crazy scramble, with almost every skater on the ice battling around the crease, the puck squirted into the slot and Ekblad teed off, firing it over the mass of bodies to get Florida within 4-3. He added a backhander less than two minutes later, tying it with 4:53 remaining.

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It was the third two-goal game for Ekblad, who missed the second half of last season and Florida’s playoff series against Tampa Bay with a broken left leg.

Verhaeghe opened the scoring for Florida midway through the first, and Duclair got the puck to squirt past DeSmith for a 2-0 Panthers lead at 3:57 of the second period.

The rest of the period was all Pittsburgh, because Florida couldn’t stay out of the penalty box.

The Panthers took five penalties in a 10-minute span, played with either one or two players off the ice for more than six consecutive minutes in one stretch, and eventually the Penguins took advantage. Heinen — who also had Pittsburgh’s first goal in the opener at Tampa Bay — scored to cut the two-goal lead in half, and Carter’s milestone goal came with 1:02 left in the second.

4 OF 7

Of the seven active players with 400 goals, four were technically part of this game. Sidney Crosby (486) and Evgeni Malkin (424) are injured for Pittsburgh, and Joe Thornton (425) made his Panthers debut. The others on the list are Alex Ovechkin, Steven Stamkos and Patrick Kane.

NOTES: The Goodyear blimp was hovering over FLA Live Arena as fans arrived. … Guentzel, who missed the opener because of COVID-19 protocols, played in his 300th career game. … The Panthers paid tribute to the team’s alternate governor, U.S. Army Gen. Raymond Odierno, who died earlier this month. Odierno led the Army division that captured Iraq dictator Saddam Hussein in 2003. … Pittsburgh became the first team to score two power-play goals in the same period of a regular-season game against Florida since Los Angeles got two in the third period of a 4-3 Panthers win on Jan. 16, 2020. Tampa Bay did it twice against Florida in last season’s playoffs.

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