4 Takeaways From Hurricanes’ 4OT Game 1 Loss vs. Panthers

The Carolina Hurricanes dropped Game 1 of their Round 3 series against the Florida Panthers. The game lasted until the dying seconds of the fourth overtime period when Matthew Tkachuk scored the game-winner.

Matthew Tkachuk Florida Panthers
Matthew Tkachuk, Florida Panthers (Photo by Josh Lavallee/NHLI via Getty Images)

Despite the loss, there were some positives about the Hurricanes’ performance. Frederik Andersen continued his hot streak and the power play came through with both of their goals coming on the man advantage. It ultimately wouldn’t be enough to defeat the Panthers, though.

Power Play Powers Up

The Hurricanes went on the power play six times over the course of the seven-period Game 1. Their power play opened the scoring in the last minute of the first period with Seth Jarvis getting the tally. He has collected five goals total in these 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs while on the first power play unit and first line with Sebastian Aho.

Seth Jarvis Carolina Hurricanes
Seth Jarvis, Carolina Hurricanes (Photo by Josh Lavallee/NHLI via Getty Images)

The Hurricanes had 11 shots and five missed shots over all six of their power play opportunities. Two of the five missed shots came in the fourth overtime where they could have been the team to collect the first win in this series. They also continued their dominant penalty kill, which did not allow any power play goals against them.

Disallowed OT Goal

Sixty minutes was not enough time to decide this contest. In the first overtime, it appeared as though Ryan Lomberg had won the game for the Panthers 2:35 into the first extra frame. The goal was called back on the grounds of goaltender interference. On the replay you could see that Colin White skated through the crease, bumping into Andersen. His skate also pushed one of Andersen’s and slowed down his ability to push back to the other end of the net to prevent the goal.

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Four Overtime Periods Later

It took almost four overtime periods for the game-winning goal to happen. Tkachuk scored for the Panthers with 13 seconds left in the fourth overtime. Both goaltenders had played excellent in the extra periods. But in the last portion of the fourth overtime, the Hurricanes were starting to look tired and the Panthers pounced on their opportunity.

Sam Bennett picked off a clearing attempt from Jaccob Slavin and dished the puck to Tkachuk, who sniped it past Andersen. It must have felt good for the Panthers to score after their first perceived game-winner got called back. Both teams will now rest up for Game 2 after playing seven periods of hockey in one game.

Andersen & Bobrovsky Put On a Goaltending Clinic

Sergei Bobrovsky and Andersen were the best players on the ice for either team. Andersen continued his Conn Smythe Trophy-worthy postseason by stopping 57 of 60 shots. The Panthers really turned up the intensity in the overtime frames, as 40 of their 60 shots came once the game went into extra time. The Hurricanes did their best to help their goalie with 39 blocked shots through the seven periods.

Sergei Bobrovsky Florida Panthers
Sergei Bobrovsky of the Florida Panthers makes a save against Jack Drury of the Carolina Hurricanes during the first period in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Final of the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs (Photo by Cato Cataldo/NHLI via Getty Images)

Not to be outdone by Andersen, Bobrovsky had a stellar performance in this game as well. His 63 saves on 65 shots were good for a .969 save percentage (SV%). The Panthers had 38 blocked shots of their own, easing the burden on their netminder.

Interesting Statistics

  • Game 1 was the sixth-longest Stanley Cup Playoff game ever.
  • Game 1 was the longest playoff game in Hurricanes and Panthers franchise history.
  • Brandon Montour played the most of both teams with 57:56 time on ice (TOI)
  • Radko Gudas led both teams with 12 hits.
  • Brent Burns led both teams with 10 blocks.
  • Montour, Anthony Duclair, and Burns all had eight shots.
  • Teuvo Teravainen played 37:28 in his first game back from injury.

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Game 2 is set for Saturday, May 20, as the Hurricanes look to tie up the series. They will need to get the same stellar goaltending and win the special teams battle in order to come out on top. It’s hard to fault them for showing signs of fatigue after playing seven periods of hockey in one game, but that ended up being the difference in this Game 1 contest.