The Panthers followed up their two victories and a draw last season with another point that came courtesy of a late equaliser from Mark Kolesar just over a minute from time.
Pekka Virta and Steve Roberts scored the Panthers' other goals, while Manchester's men on the mark were Jeff Tomlinson, Kelly Askew and Jonathan Weaver.
There was still no joy, meanwhile, for the new boys London Knights. Playing their first home game - at Milton Keynes - against Sheffield Steelers, the Knights went down 5-3 for their second defeat of the weekend.
Having taken the lead in under two minutes through Nick Poole, they pulled the score back to 2-2 through Greg Gatto, after Derek Laxdal and David Longstaff had put the Steelers in front.
But Laxdal's second, and efforts from Ed Courtenay and Teeder Wynne put the Steelers in control, despite Jason Campeau pulling one back for Knights.
It was a dismal weekend on the road for last season's beaten cup finalists Cardiff Devils. Having lost away to the holders, Ayr, on Saturday, they went down 4-3 to Newcastle Riverkings the following night. Blake Knox scored twice for the Riverkings, who were never behind, and goals were added by the former Devils player Hilton Ruggles and Glenn Mulvenna. For Cardiff, goals came from Mario Simioni, Martin Lindman and Doug McEwen.Reuse content