Jonathan Marchessault had himself quite a night as the one-time member of the Panthers recorded a natural hat trick and led his Vegas Golden Knights to a 5-2 win in Edmonton on Sunday night.
That win in Game 6 officially ended the Oilers’ season as Vegas will move on to face either Dallas or Seattle in the Western Conference finals.
On Sunday night, Vegas got its goals from three players who have been there since Day 1 and have been instrumental in the Knights’ fantastic start.
You all remember how Vegas got Marchessault and Riley Smith; William Carlsson came over from the Blue Jackets.
This will be Vegas’ fourth trip to the WCF in the franchise’s six seasons. The Knights are trying to advance to the Cup Final for the first time since that first season.
If Dallas were to win tonight in Game 7, this would be the second time Pete DeBoer met the team which fired him in the following playoffs.
In 2012, his New Jersey Devils beat the Panthers in the opening round.
FLORIDA HOCKEY NOW
The Florida Panthers went all-in to get Sergei Bobrovsky back in 2019, signing the two-time Vezina Trophy winner to what was the richest contract in franchise history.
There have certainly been some ups-and-downs since, but Big Game Bob is back when the Panthers have needed him most as he has been downright phenomenal in this postseason.
— Overtime has been winning time for the Panthers in this postseason as Florida has looked calm, cool and collected as they have gone 4-0 in the extra session — with all of those wins on the road. What is their secret? Being cool, like Fonzie, is part of it. Hope you got that movie reference.
— The NHL should release the schedule for the Panthers-Hurricanes series today — although, who knows. We’re hearing ESPN will be taking the West finals meaning Game 1 should open Thursday night on TNT. Stay tuned.
— Even the toughest critic has to be happy to see Sasha Barkov and Aaron Ekblad being able to finally be part of a deep playoff run with the Florida Panthers.
— Paul Maurice has deep ties to the Carolina Hurricanes organization going back to his days with the Hartford Whalers. He will see a lot of friends this week, including all the coaches behind the Carolina bench.
— If you live outside the Carolinas, the Hurricanes are not going to sell playoff tickets to you. It sounds familiar, eh?
— Could Ryan Lomberg be back with the Panthers during this upcoming series? Appears likely.
— Nick Cousins becomes the latest overtime hero for the Panthers.
— The Panthers keep the good times rolling into the Eastern Conference finals. This group is having a fun time.
— Matthew Tkachuk becomes the third Panthers player to be a Hart Trophy finalist.
— Maurice has been keeping things light with postgame press conferences which are becoming very popular on YouTube. While Maurice knows the Panthers have to take things serious, he wants them to enjoy this journey as well.
— The Panthers nominated Barkov for the King Clancy Memorial Trophy for his work on and off the ice.
— A lot of video is up on the FHN YouTube Channel including Game 5 postgame reaction from Paul Maurice, Sergei Bobrovsky, Matthew Tkachuk, Nick Cousins and Sasha Barkov.
More coming today following practice at the FLArena.
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.
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NHL NEWS/NATIONAL HOCKEY NOW
The Canadian Stanley Cup drought is now at 30 years and counting as the Oilers get bounced.
Edmonton was Canada’s final hope this season to bring the Cup back north after Florida took care of the Maple Leafs.
The last Canadian Cup champ was the Canadiens in 1993. That’s a tongue twister.
— The Oilers pulled rookie goalie Stuart Skinner and went to Jack Campbell down 4-2 going into the third period on Sunday night. Too late.
— What should the Maple Leafs do moving forward?
— The Dallas Stars do not have history on their side against Seattle in Game 7 tonight – but at least they have some history, right? DeBoer is 6-0 in Game 7s so there is that.
— What are the Boston Bruins going to do with defenseman Matt Grzelcyk?
— Is there a chance Mike Sullivan leaves the Pittsburgh Penguins for the Rangers?
— The Philadelphia Flyers rebuild really could have used Connor Bedard.
— Looking at who the Colorado Avalanche are looking at to replace Gabriel Landeskog.
FLORIDA PANTHERS ON DECK
STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS
EASTERN CONFERENCE FINALS
PANTHERS (WC2) AT CAROLINA HURRICANES (MET1)
- When: TBA
- Where: PNC Arena, Raleigh
- TV/Radio: TBA
- Series Schedule: TBA
- Season Series: (Carolina won 2-1): Florida 3, Carolina 2 (Nov.9); Carolina 4, Florida 0 (Dec. 30); Carolina 6, Florida 4 (April 13)
- All-Time Regular Season Series: Carolina/Hartford leads 71-46-10, 11 ties
- Postseason History: First Meeting
- How They Got Here — Carolina: d. New York Islanders in 6; d. New Jersey Devils in 5. Florida: d. Boston Bruins in 7; d. Toronto Maple Leafs in 5.