The Florida Panthers had their chances on Saturday night in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final, but Vegas Golden Knights goalie Adin Hill somehow, someway, stopped their biggest one of the game.
Early in the second period, Hill went down on the ice and the puck found Nick Cousins’ stick.
You could see Cousins’ eyes light up at the prospect. Panthers lead 2-1, right?
Hill somehow reached out with his stick, the paddle barely clipping the slow-moving puck and keeping out of the net.
Florida, which led 1-0 on Eric Staal’s shorty, never led again and ended up taking a 5-2 loss.
“We were talking about it in the room. That was an incredible save at a pretty important time of the game,” Mark Stone said per Vegas Hockey Now. “He makes the huge save.”
Vegas coach Bruce Cassidy called it a “gamechanger.’’
Regardless, the Panthers end up losing 5-2 after a sloppy third period and that’s the way it goes.
Game 2 on Monday night.
FLORIDA HOCKEY NOW
He ended up getting tossed not long after his soft clearing pass was picked off by Stone and sent into the back of the net to make it 4-2 in the third.
Plenty of time to get that one back.
— There was no panic in the Panthers following the loss. They know this is a long series. Lots of hockey left to be played.
Of course, that’s what we said after Game 1 in Denver all them years ago.
— When Colby is not being complimented by the NHL commissioner for his sportscoat, he is answering your questions about the Panthers. The newest FHN Mailbag is up!
— Three of the past five Stanley Cup champions won the Presidents’ Trophy the previous season. Could the Panthers make it four of six?
— The Panthers wanted to keep their road juju rolling but their road playoff winning streak ends at eight — second all-time in NHL postseason history.
— It’s not a dog bone at all: Marc Staal spilled the ‘beef’ regarding a new postgame ritual.
— The Panthers got over 10,000 at the arena last night for Game 1 and they’re going to have outdoor watch parties for home games as well.
— Sergei Bobrovsky has accomplished a lot during his 13 seasons in the NHL. For the first time, he is in the Stanley Cup Finals. Bobrovsky spoke to FHN about those rumors of losing 20 pounds in Game 5, holes drilled into his skates, his mindset going into the Final and that glorious flow he’s got going on right now.
— There is a TON of video is up on the FHN YouTube Channel including Game 1 postgame reaction from Paul Maurice, Sergei Bobrovsky and Eric Staal. Also pregame from Matthew Tkachuk, Anton Lundell, Sasha Barkov and Carter Verhaeghe.
There will also be plenty of off-day video coming as the series rolls along.
To see all the videos, you can click the embedded videos below or head directly to the FHN YouTube Channel RIGHT HERE to see everything all in one place.
If you hit subscribe (it’s free), you will know when new content comes up.
NATIONAL HOCKEY NOW
Going into the Vegas Golden Knights dressing room where they were pretty thrilled to exit Game 1 with what looked like a resounding win.
Again, Game 2 on Monday night.
— Not that they could afford him, but it looks like the Boston Bruins are going to lose Dmitry Orlov to free agency.
— Looks like the Canadiens are close to signing Cole Caufield.
— Looking at what Kyle Dubas is going to do in his new gig with the Pittsburgh Penguins.
— Look who’ll be playing in Jersey: It’s the Philadelphia Flyers.
— NHL commissioner Gary Bettman says there is no investigation into Colorado’s Valeri Nichushkin.
— Looking at the offseason plans for the San Jose Sharks.
— Hopefully the Arizona Coyotes get one more chance.
FLORIDA PANTHERS ON DECK
THE 2023 STANLEY CUP FINAL
FLORIDA PANTHERS AT VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS
GAME 2 (Vegas Leads 1-0)
- When: Monday, 8 p.m.
- Where: T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas
- TV: TNT
- Radio: WQAM 560-AM, WPOW 96.5 FM2, WBZT 1230-AM (Palm Beach); WCTH 100.3-FM (Florida Keys); SiriusXM
- Panthers Radio Streaming: SiriusXM 932
- Series Schedule — Game 1: @Vegas 5, Florida 2; Game 2: Monday at Vegas, 8 (TNT); Game 3: Thursday at Florida, 8 (TNT); Game 4: Saturday at Florida, 8 (TNT); Game 5*:Tuesday June 13 at Vegas, 8 (TNT); Game 6*: Friday June 16 at Florida, 8 (TNT); Game 7*: Monday June 19 at Vegas, 8 (TNT). * – If Necessary
- 2022-23 Regular Season Series (Even 1-1): @Vegas 4, Florida 2 (Jan. 12); @Florida 2, Vegas 1 (March 7)
- All-time Regular Season Series: Golden Knights lead 6-3-1
- Postseason History: First meeting
- How They Got Here — Vegas: d. Winnipeg in 5, Edmonton in 6, Dallas in 6; Florida: d. Boston in 7, Toronto in 5, Carolina in 4.