Oilers rout Panthers in Game 4 of Stanley Cup Final to keep series alive

Jordan McPherson, Miami Herald on

Published in Hockey

As Paul Maurice prepared for Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final, the first chance for his Florida Panthers to win the Stanley Cup and pull off a rare Stanley Cup Final sweep against the Edmonton Oilers, he acknowledged that there would be two energy sources in Edmonton’s Rogers Arena.

“One’s desperation and the other’s desire, for lack of another word,” Maurice said.

On this night, Edmonton’s desperation overpowered Florida’s desire.

The Oilers kept their season alive by routing the Panthers 8-1 on Saturday in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final. The Panthers still lead the best-of-7 series 3-1 and need only one more win to win the first Stanley Cup in franchise history.

This is the third time in Panthers history they have given up at least eight goals in a Stanley Cup playoffs game. All three instances have been in the Cup Final — the others were Game 5 against Las Vegas last year (nine goals allowed) and Game 2 against Colorado in 1996 (eight goals allowed)

Edmonton blitzed Florida early, scoring three goals in the first period and chasing Panthers goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky after scoring two more goals in the first five minutes of the second to take a commanding 5-1 lead.

Mattias Janmark, Adam Henrique, Dylan Holloway, Connor McDavid and Darnell Nurse scored the goals against Bobrovsky.

Anthony Stolarz replaced Bobrovsky in net, making his first career playoff (and Stanley Cup Final) appearance in the process, and gave up three goals — the first by Ryan Nugent-Hopkins with the Oilers on a five-on-three power plays, the others by Dylan Holloway and Ryan McLeod late in the third — while facing 19 shots on goal.


Fifteen Oilers were on the scoresheet, led by McDavid’s four points (one goal, three assists). Holloway had two goals and an assist. Janmark had a goal and an assist. Leon Draisaitl and Zach Hyman each had a pair of assists.

Florida’s only goal came 11:26 in the first period when Vladimir Tarasenko tipped in a long shot from defenseman Gustav Forsling.

Other than that, Oilers goaltender Stuart Skinner was stellar with arguably his best performance of the series. Skinner stopped 32-of-33 shots he faced.

Now, that said, it’s one game in the grand scheme of things. The Panthers’ priority now is making sure the Oilers don’t build on this performance as the series continues.

Florida still has three more chances to finish off the series. Two of those are on home ice.

Game 5 is Tuesday at Sunrise’s Amerant Bank Arena.


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