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NHL Morning Skate: Stanley Cup Playoffs Edition – May 22, 2023

Chandler Stephenson played the role of hero for Vegas in what was the fourth comeback overtime win of the 2023 Conference Finals – a round that has seen all of its 324:25 of gametime feature teams tied or within a one-goal margin.

Matthew Tkachuk and the Panthers can achieve several NHL firsts Monday, while the Hurricanes hope to become the ninth team in League history and second in as many years to win a best-of-seven Conference Finals/Semifinals series after dropping each of the first two games. Click here to read the May 22 edition of #NHLStats: Live Updates, which features the full list of clubs to achieve the feat.

* The 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs marks the first time the penultimate round of the postseason has featured both series require overtime for Games 1 and 2.


GOLDEN KNIGHTS RALLY AGAIN TO MATCH NHL MARK AND SNAG 2-0 SERIES LEAD

Jonathan Marchessault (1-1—2) tied the game with 2:22 remaining in regulation and Chandler Stephenson (1-1—2) scored 1:12 into overtime as the Golden Knights captured their fourth consecutive comeback win and now travel to America Airlines Center with a 2-0 lead in the Western Conference Final. Vegas, the first team to hand Jake Oettinger consecutive losses this postseason, tied the longest stretch of consecutive comeback wins in Stanley Cup Playoffs history.


* Stephenson’s heroics, which marked his third-game-winning goal of the 2023 postseason, comes two days after Brett Howden found the back of the net 1:35 into overtime in Game 1 to lead the Golden Knights to victory. Vegas has scored within the opening two minutes of overtime for the fourth time since entering the NHL in 2017-18 – the most among all teams through that span. The only other teams to do so multiple times are Montreal (3x) and Colorado (2x).

* The Golden Knights became the fourth team in NHL history to score in the opening two minutes of overtime in consecutive playoff games (single postseason) joining the 1980 Islanders (Game 1 of 1980 QF and 2 of 1980 QF) 1993 Canadiens (Game 2 of 1993 SCF and Game 3 of 1992 SCF) and 2022 Avalanche (Game 4 of 2022 CF and Game 1 of  2022 SCF).

* Marchessault was the second player in as many games to score a late game-tying goal in this series after Jamie Benn (58:01) helped Dallas send Game 1 to overtime. The 2023 Western Conference Final is just the second Conference Finals/Semifinals series to feature a game-tying goal within the final three minutes of regulation in each of the first two games (also Games 1 and 2 of the 1969 SF, both by MTL).

* Game 2 between the Golden Knights and Stars was the fourth overtime game of the Conference Finals and the 22nd overall in the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs. This marks the first time the penultimate round of the postseason has featured both series require overtime for Games 1 and 2.



QUICK CLICKS


Aleksander Barkov‘s fancy goal wows Wayne Gretzky, inspires Panthers in Game 2 OT win
Matthew Tkachuk showing style, swagger with Panthers 2 wins from Cup Final
Hurricanes not deviating from game plan ahead of Game 3
Kaapo Kakko working to become ‘better player’ amid changes with Rangers

FLORIDA AIMS FOR 3-0 LEAD AS CONFERENCE FINALS SHIFT TO EDGE OF EVERGLADES

The Panthers look to move within one win of their second Stanley Cup Final appearance in franchise history as the Eastern Conference Final shifts to Sunrise for Game 3 on Monday. The contest is carried on TNT in the U.S. as well as on Sportsnet, TVA Sports and CBC in Canada.

Matthew Tkachuk followed up his quadruple-overtime goal in Game 1 by scoring the winner just 1:51 into extra time Saturday to give Florida a 2-0 series lead. He can become the first player in Stanley Cup Playoffs history with an overtime goal in three consecutive games and four overall during a single postseason.
 
* The Panthers have earned overtime wins in each of their past three contests dating to Game 5 of the Second Round when Nick Cousins had the series clincher against the Maple Leafs. Florida can become the first team in Stanley Cup Playoffs history with an overtime victory in four consecutive contests during a single postseason.

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