NHL Playoff Recaps: Panthers win 4-OT marathon over Canes

NHL Playoff Recaps:  May 18, 2023

RALEIGH, N.C. — Matthew Tkachuk scored with 12.7 seconds left in the fourth overtime as the Florida Panthers pulled out a 3-2 victory against the Carolina Hurricanes in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals on Thursday.

The game that began Thursday night saw 79 minutes, 47 seconds of overtime played and fell 13 seconds short of becoming the sixth game in league history to see a fifth overtime period.

It was the longest game in franchise history for both teams and the sixth-longest contest in NHL history.

NHL Playoff Recaps: Panthers win marathon contest

nhl playoff recaps
May 18, 2023; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; Florida Panthers left wing Matthew Tkachuk (19) reacts after scoring the game winning goal against the Carolina Hurricanes during the fourth overtime period of game one in the Eastern Conference Finals of the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs at PNC Arena. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

After an incredible goaltending display from Florida’s Sergei Bobrovsky and Carolina’s Frederik Andersen, Tkachuk batted in a bouncing puck for his sixth goal of the playoffs as the Panthers improved to 5-0 in overtime games this postseason.

Aleksander Barkov and Carter Verhaeghe scored in the second period for the Panthers. Anthony Duclair assisted on both regulation goals, while Barkov and Verhaeghe each assisted on the other’s goal.

Bobrovsky made 63 saves.

Seth Jarvis and Stefan Noesen scored power-play goals in regulation for the Hurricanes. Andersen stopped 57 shots for Carolina, which had been 3-0 this postseason in OT contests.

This was the first game to extend beyond one overtime for both teams this spring. It was the longest Stanley Cup playoff game since the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-2 in five OTs on Aug. 11, 2020.

The game ended at 1:54 a.m. ET on Friday. The Hurricanes will host Game 2 of the best-of-seven series on Saturday.

The Panthers, playing in a conference finals game for the first time since 1996, won for the seventh time in eight road games in this postseason.

Florida’s Ryan Lomberg appeared to have scored the winning goal 2:35 into the first overtime, but the play was wiped out after a video review, with Colin White ruled to have committed goalie interference.

Both teams logged 10 shots on goal in the second overtime. Andersen thwarted Florida’s Brandon Montour, who was left alone in front of the net, early in the third overtime.

The Panthers held an 11-8 edge in third-OT shots.

Noesen’s tying goal came 3:47 into the third period, giving him four goals in the postseason. That was part of Carolina’s 9-1 edge in shots across the first nine minutes of the third.

The Hurricanes outshot Florida 14-2 in the third period after the Panthers pulled ahead late in the second.

Barkov tied the game 1-1 with 4:32 remaining in the second period with his third goal of the postseason.

Verhaeghe’s goal came with 2:17 left in the second period. His sixth of the playoffs lifted him into a tie for the team lead.

Jarvis, who was alone in the slot, posted his fifth goal of the playoffs with 11.1 seconds to play in the opening period on a power play. Sebastian Aho’s pass connected with Jarvis.

The Hurricanes had forward Teuvo Teravainen in action for the first time since Game 2 of the first round when he sustained a broken hand against the New York Islanders.

–Bob Sutton, Field Level Media