News – NHL – The « Morning Skate » of Saturday May 14


The statistics of the night

  • The Panthers rallied from a deficit to win for the third straight time and earn their first playoff win in 26 years, while the Rangers came back from a multi-goal deficit to avoid elimination for the second straight time and force the Penguins to Game 7 on Sunday.
  • It’s been a rollercoaster week for NHL fans, with 11 comeback wins over the past five days, including four multi-goal comeback wins. The week of « Mayhem » will end with five matches at 7 this weekend, including three on Saturday and two on Sunday.
  • The Stars beat the Flames to force the first-ever Game 7 between the two franchises. Of the teams facing each other for the first time in a Game 7, the home team holds a 66-50 record in those encounters (excluding the 2020 post-season).

The « Comeback Cats » qualify

After the Panthers rallied from two one-goal deficits and TJ Oshie equalized for the Capitals with 1:03 left in regulation, Carter Verhaeghe scored the game-winning goal for the third straight time, helping Florida earn its first series win since the 1996 Conference Finals.

  • The Panthers became the 17th team in NHL history to record three or more straight wins to close a series and the ninth in the past 30 years. The Golden Knights were the last team to achieve the feat after doing so in Games 3-6 of the 2021 Round 2 against the Avalanche.
  • Verhaeghe, who also scored the winning goal in overtime in Game 4, joined Brayden Point of Tampa Bay (2 in 2020 R1) as the second active player to score multiple overtime goals in a single series. In fact, only three players in NHL history have scored more goals in a single playoff year: Mel Hill (3 in 1939 with BOS), Maurice Richard (3 in 1951 with MTL) and Corey Perry (3 in 2017 with ANA).
  • Verhaeghe concluded the first round with 6-6-12 (6 GP) and is currently tied with Connor McDavid (3-9-12 in 6 GP) for the most points among any skater in the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs. His totals also scored the most goals and points in a single playoff series per a Panthers player in franchise history.
  • The Panthers will face either the Maple Leafs or the Lightning in the second round. Florida has never faced Toronto in the Stanley Cup Playoffs and only faced Tampa Bay once in the 2021 first round (2-4 L).
  • Florida head coach, Andrew Brownhad just finished his rookie campaign with the Capitals when the Panthers won their final playoff series in 1996. He went 1-3-4 in six games in Washington’s conference quarterfinal loss to Pittsburgh (L 2-4).

Game 7 Rangers

For the second time in as many games, the Rangers trailed 2-0, took a 3-2 lead, saw the Penguins tie the game and then benefited from a third-period goal to avoid elimination. This time it’s the trio Mika Zibanejad (2-2-4), adam fox (0-4-4) and Chris Kreider (2-0-2) that allowed New York to force a seventh game after being down 3-1 for the fourth time in franchise history.

  • Fox became the first Rangers defenseman to record four points in a potential elimination game, beating the previous mark shared by four others: Brian Leetch (1-2-3 in the seventh game of the 1992 DSF), James Patrick (0-3-3 in the seventh game of the 1992 DSF), Willie Huber (1-2-3 in DSF Game 5) and Reijo Ruotsalainen (1-2-3 in Game 6 of the 1982 DSF).
  • Zibanejad, who went 2-1-3 in the second period, tied the franchise record for points in a Rangers playoff period, a feat last accomplished by JT Miller (0-3-3) in the second period of Game 2 of the 2016 first round – also against the Penguins. Only one skater in Rangers history has recorded more points in a potential elimination game than Fox and Zibanejad: Derick Brassard (3-2-5) in Game 6 of the 2015 Conference Finals.
  • Kreider scored the game-winning goal with 1:28 remaining in regulation, marking the second-latest goal in Rangers playoff history, behind Cam Connor (58:51: game 3 of the DSF 1982). He thus scored his eighth post-season winning goal and overtook Mark Messier (7) for the record in franchise history.

The Stars are looking for a surprise

Miro Heiskanen scored the winning goal and Jake Oettinger made 36 saves. The Stars beat the Flames at American Airlines Centerr to force a seventh game. Heiskanen became the first Stars/North Stars defenseman to score in a potential series elimination game since Trevor Daley who scored twice in Game 6 of the 2014 first round.

  • Heiskanen is no stranger to playoff performance – at 21, he helped Dallas reach the final after recording the fourth-best performance by a defender in a single season in Cup playoff history Stanley (6-20-26 in 27 GP), behind Paul Coffey (1985: 12-25-37 in 18 GP), Brian Leetch (1994: 11-23-34 in 23 GP) and Al MacInnis (1989: 7-24-31 in 22 GP).

  • Dallas and Calgary will meet for the first time in Game 7 on Sunday. Of the teams facing each other for the first time in a seventh game, the home side hold a 66-50 record in those encounters (not including the 2020 post-season).

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