The Florida Panthers and Montreal Canadiens had a wild first period in Thursday's game, tying an NHL record. Mar 16, 2023; Sunrise, Florida, USA; Florida Panthers defenseman Aaron Ekblad (5) celebrates a goal with teammates in the second period against the Montreal Canadiens at FLA Live Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

Normally, if an NHL team scores three goals in the first period, it sets up great to get a win. In fact, that often might be enough offense to win a game, even without another goal being scored in the rest of the game. But Thursday’s game between the Montreal Canadiens and Florida Panthers was not that kind of game. Far from it.

Montreal came out swinging on offense. The Canadiens scored 16 seconds into the game and had three goals in just over eight minutes. Unfortunately, Montreal’s defense was every bit as bad as its offense was good.

The three goals in the first 8:18 were only enough to tie the game. The Florida offense, meanwhile, continued its onslaught throughout the rest of the opening period, scoring four more goals to open up a 7-3 lead after the first period.

No individual team has scored that many goals in an opening period in more than 37 years. The 10 combined goals, meanwhile, tied an NHL record.

Hockey fans had a lot to say about the absolutely wild opening 20 minutes.

The defenses were a little bit stronger in the second period. That said, it’s not like the offenses went away. Montreal narrowed the gap just 2:26 into the second period but the Panthers responded with two more to take a 9-4 lead after two periods.

[ESPN Stats & Info, NHL]

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