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NHL Morning Skate: Stanley Cup Final Edition – June 9, 2024

Sergei Bobrovsky recorded the first shutout in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final since 2011 and helped Florida take its first-ever series lead in the Final.

* The Panthers’ victory came exactly one year after their only other win in the Stanley Cup Final, with June 8 now unofficially “Carter Verhaeghe Day” in South Florida – he has accounted for the go-ahead, game-winning goal in both of those victories on year apart (also June 8, 2023 in Game 3 vs. VGK).

* Also Saturday: the 2024 NHL Scouting Combine presented by adidas conclude in Buffalo and the NHL and NHLPA announced details for the 4 Nations Face-Off in February 2025 as well as a total of $4 million raised for Hockey Fights Cancer, powered by the V Foundation for Cancer Research.


BOBROVSKY A BRICK WALL FOR PANTHERS IN GAME 1 VICTORY

Franchise records fell and franchise firsts were achieved in front of a sellout crowd of 19,543 in Sunrise as Sergei Bobrovsky’s 32-save shutout backed the Panthers to their first-ever series lead in the Stanley Cup Final. Bobrovsky became the oldest goaltender in NHL history to post a shutout in Game 1 of the Final, supplanting Patrick Roy (35 years, 233 days in 2001).

* It was the 16th-ever shutout in Game 1 of the Final and first since 2011 when Roberto Luongo was perfect for the Canucks. That year also marked the last time a goaltender recorded a shutout in the championship series at age 35 or older – 37-year-old Tim Thomas had two for Boston at that year (Games 4 & 7).

* Bobrovsky notched his second shutout this postseasonthird of his Panthers career and 13th win of these playoffs to establish franchise benchmarks in all three categories. In doing so, he also became the oldest goaltender to win any game in the Final since Martin Brodeur in 2012.

* It was the first-ever shutout in the Final for Florida and just the fifth time since 2017 the Oilers were held to zero goals. The Panthers’ win marked the ninth time in 11 years that the home team won Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final.

PANTHERS CALL ON THE CLUTCH SCORING OF CARTER VERHAEGHE ONCE AGAIN

Carter Verhaeghe continued his clutch scoring by netting the 1-0 goal less than four minutes into Game 1, building upon his franchise record with his 25th career playoff goal. It was the second goal Verhaeghe has scored in the Stanley Cup Final, with both standing as game winners and both coming on June 8 – he tallied in overtime of Game 3 in the 2023 Final to give Florida its only other victory in the championship series.

* Verhaeghe became the sixth player in NHL history – and third in the past 95 years – to account for each of a franchise’s first two game-winning goals in the Stanley Cup Final.

* Verhaeghe’s goal was his 10th of these playoffs, half of which have been go-ahead goals. He is now one goal back of tying the franchise record for goals a single postseason, a mark set last year by Matthew Tkachuk.

* A first-of-its-kind telecast, the ‘NHL in ASL’ alternate telecast dedicated to the Deaf community debuted in Game 1, and captured the opening goal of the Stanley Cup Final like never before. Using American Sign Language (ASL), and created in partnership with P-X-P, the telecast will occur for every game during the 2024 Stanley Cup Final, available on ESPN+ (U.S.) and Sportsnet+ (Canada).

4 NATIONS FACE-OFF PLANS, $4 MILLION TO HOCKEY FIGHTS CANCER ANNOUNCED

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly were joined at their annual Stanley Cup Final media availability by National Hockey League Players’ Association Executive Director Marty Walsh to announce the host venues and cities, game schedule, North American broadcasters and official event logo for the 4 Nations Face-Off. A joint venture of the NHL and NHLPA, the international tournament will feature NHL players from Canada, Finland, Sweden and the United States in February 2025. Click here for more information.

* Also part of the media availability before Game 1 was an announcement that Hockey Fights Cancer, celebrating its 25th anniversary and newly powered by the V Foundation for Cancer Research, had its fundraising pace drastically elevated, raising over $4 million this season. Together with the V Foundation, the NHLPA and the NHL announced that $2.9 million will go directly to life-saving cancer research. All 32 Clubs hosted in-game Hockey Fights Cancer awareness nights in 2023-24, raising over $1.2 million for local cancer-related charities around North America bringing the total raised by this remarkable initiative to over $36 million since its inception.

* Before the media availability, the League and NHLPA also announced the Team Payroll Range for 2024-25 provides for a Lower Limit of $65.0 million, a Midpoint of $76.5 million and an Upper Limit of $88.0 million.

OTHER CAN’T-MISS MOMENTS FROM GAME 1

The most famous guest of all made an appearance on the ice before Game 1, part of a memorable Stanley Cup Final opener in Florida.

The Kid LAROIperformed outside Amerant Bank Arena as part of the Stanley Cup Concert Series presented by BODYARMOR Sports Drink, Miami Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel fired up the crowd on the drum inside before puck drop and other celebrities attending Game 1 included Ariana Grande– the GRAMMY-Award winner, who at eight years old sang the anthem before a Panthers game.

* Before Game 1, Stanley Cup Live presented by New Amsterdam Vodka welcomed Panthers alumnus Ed Jovanovski, who was part of the first Florida team to reach the Final in 1996, as well as other guests including Coach Chippy.

* Panthers head coach Paul Maurice started his media availability after Game 1 by congratulating the Florida Everblades for claiming their third consecutive Kelly Cup – a first in ECHL history. Maurice’s son, Jake, has been the broadcaster for each of the Everblades’ past two titles while his father pursues his first Cup after nearly 2,000 total NHL games.

STANLEY CUP FINAL QUICK CLICKS

ESPN opens Stanley Cup Final with “You don’t touch it ’til you’ve earned it” narrative
Phil Collins, Sportsnet set the scene for 2024 Stanley Cup Final
Oilers receive video messages from family members before Stanley Cup Final

Carter Verhaeghe‘s goal brings big excitement to groundbreaking ‘NHL in ASL’ broadcast

Sergei Bobrovsky among top performers for Panthers in Game 1 of Stanley Cup Final

2024 NHL SCOUTING COMBINE CONCLUDED WITH FITNESS TESTING SATURDAY

Zeev Buium, one of four top prospects heading to Sunrise, Fla., for Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final and the No. 4-ranked North American skater, was among the Draft hopefuls who shone during fitness testing at the 2024 NHL Scouting Combine presented by adidas and finished with the most pull-ups. He will be joined at the Final by Macklin Celebrini (No. 1-ranked NA skater), who finished fifth in VO2max, Artyom Levshunov (No. 2-ranked NA skater), who finished 10th in Vertical Jump, and Cayden Lindstrom (No. 3-ranked NA skater), who finished fourth in Bench Press.




Eric (EJ) Emery, the No. 39-ranked North American skater on NHL Central Scouting’s Final Rankings from USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program, finished the Combine first in Horizontal Jump (123.00 inches) – the highest score for the test on record in NHL Combine history. The previous mark of 122.00 inches was set by Alexei Mikhnov in 2000 and matched by Brendan Guhle in 2015.

Jett Luchanko, the No. 20-ranked North American Skater, finished in the top five in five categories: Mean Power Output (1st), Left Hand Grip (1st), Right Hand Grip (1st), Pro Agility – Right Time (2nd), Vertical Jump (2nd) and No Arm Jump (4th).

Tij Iginla, the No. 9-ranked North American skater and son of Hockey Hall of Fame member, Jarome, finished in the top 12 of five categories. Michael Brandsegg-Nygard, the No. 5-ranked International skater who hails from Oslo, Norway, finished in the top 12 of eight categories.
 
Click hereto view the top 25 results from each fitness test.


* The 2024 Upper Deck NHL Draft will converge at Sphere in Las Vegas on June 28-29. The first round will be June 28 (7 p.m. ET; ESPN, ESPN+, SN, TVAS) and round 2-7 are on June 29 (11:30 ET; ESPN+, NHLN, SN, SN1).

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