Stanley Cup Playoffs Review June 6, 2021
LIGHTNING STORM PAST HURRICANES IN EIGHT-GOAL SECOND PERIOD
The Hurricanes produced a four-goal second period to build a 4-2 lead, but Steven Stamkos and the Lightning also scored four goals of their own in the middle frame to take a 5-4 edge – an advantage they would not relinquish, ending with a 6-4 final.. It was the 12th time in Stanley Cup Playoffs history – and first in more than 11 years – that one period featured at least eight combined goals.
DEFENDING CHAMPS MOVE WITHIN ONE WIN OF STANLEY CUP SEMIFINALS
Steven Stamkos (2-1—3), Nikita Kucherov (2-1—3) and Brayden Point (1-1—2) accounted for five of Tampa Bay’s six goals as the defending champions took a 3-1 series lead against the Hurricanes and moved within one win of the Stanley Cup Semifinals.
Stamkos (5-8—13 in 10 GP), who sits two goals shy of his most in a single postseason (2015 & 2018), matched the Lightning franchise record for most points in a playoff period, a mark achieved four other times (most recently by Victor Hedman last round in the second period of Game 3 against the Panthers).
Kucherov concluded his 100th career playoff game with 41-71—112 thanks to his three-point outing, trailing only Sidney Crosby (43-75—118) for the most points through the milestone contest among active players. Additionally, the Lightning forward is one of seven players in NHL history with 40-plus goals and 70-plus assists through 100 career postseason outings.
Point registered 1-1—2 for the second time in as many games and reached 60 career points in the Stanley Cup Playoffs (29-32—61 in 54 GP). Among active players, only four required fewer contests than Point to reach the 60-point mark in the postseason: Nathan MacKinnon (42 GP), Crosby (42 GP), Evgeni Malkin (46 GP) and Alex Ovechkin (52 GP).
BARZAL LEADS ISLANDERS’ LATEST RALLY TO TIE SERIES AT 2-2
Mathew Barzal (1-1—2) assisted on the tying goal in the second period and then broke a 1-1 deadlock with 6:57 remaining in regulation to help the Islanders complete the comeback and even their Second Round series with the Bruins at two games apiece.
The Islanders have won in come-from-behind fashion in each of their last four victories during the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs. The franchise has earned a comeback win in at least four consecutive victories for the fifth time in franchise history and first since 1993 (5 GP: Games 3, 4, 6 of DSF vs. WSH & Games 1, 4 of DF vs. PIT).
Since making his playoff debut with the club in 2019, only one Islanders player has more postseason points than Barzal (9-22—31 in 40 GP): Josh Bailey (10-23—33 in 40 GP).
CANADIENS, GOLDEN KNIGHTS PLAY HOSTS WITH DIFFERENT INTENT TONIGHT
The Canadiens return home looking to pull ahead 3-0 in their Second Round series against the Jets, while the Golden Knights host the Avalanche looking to pull even at 2-2 following a late comeback victory in front of a capacity crowd in Las Vegas on Friday.
Montreal will put its five-game winning streak on the line as they seek a 3-0 series lead for the first time since the 2015 First Round (vs. OTT). The Canadiens have not trailed at any point over their winning streak, leading for 189:51 and tied for 126:23 since the puck dropped on Game 5 versus Toronto. Carey Price, who has a 1.71 goals-against average and .947 save percentage over his past five games, will look to become the first Canadiens goaltender since Patrick Roy (11-0 in 1993) to string together six straight victories within a playoff year and has a shot at becoming the third Montreal goaltender to post back-to-back playoff shutouts (also George Hainsworth in 1930 and Jacques Plante in 1960).
After staging the 12th third-period comeback win of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs in front of nearly 18,000 fans at T-Mobile Arena on Friday, the Golden Knights will now look to even their series with the Avalanche. Vegas will look to become the ninth team to even a best-of-seven series with the Presidents’ Trophy winner at 2-2 after losing the first two contests (since 1985-86). In order to do so, the Golden Knights will have to contend with Avalanche forward Mikko Rantanen who has scored a goal in four straight games and has at least one point in each of his last 17 postseason contests dating to Game 3 of the 2020 First Round (vs. ARI) – one of eight such runs in Stanley Cup Playoffs history.
Bruins’ Krejci Fined for Slashing
Boston Bruins forward David Krejci been fined $5,000, the maximum allowable under the Collective Bargaining Agreement, for slashing New York Islanders forward Mathew Barzal during Game 4 of the teams’ Second Round series in New York on Saturday, June 5, 2021. The incident occurred at 11:13 of the second period. Krejci was assessed a minor penalty for slashing. The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.
Barkov, Bergeron and Stone Voted Frank Selke Trophy Finalists
Florida Panthers center Aleksander Barkov, Boston Bruins center Patrice Bergeron and Vegas Golden Knights right wing Mark Stone are the three finalists for the 2020‑21 Frank J. Selke Trophy, awarded “to the forward who best excels in the defensive aspects of the game,” the National Hockey League announced today.
Members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association submitted ballots for the Selke Trophy after the conclusion of the regular season, with the top three vote-getters designated as finalists. The winners of the 2021 NHL Awards presented by Bridgestone will be revealed during the Stanley Cup Semifinals and Stanley Cup Final, with exact dates, format and times to be announced.
Following are the finalists for the Selke Trophy, in alphabetical order:
Aleksander Barkov, C, Florida Panthers
Barkov led a Florida forward corps that contributed to the Panthers posting their lowest team goals-against figure (2.70) since 2015-16 and a drop of more than half a goal per game over their 2019-20 figure of 3.25. He led Florida forwards and was ninth among NHL forwards in average ice time (20:56) and ranked 10th in the NHL in total face-offs (1,026), posting a 54.9% win percentage. The only players to exceed Barkov in both average ice time and face-off win percentage were Edmonton’s Leon Draisaitl and Los Angeles’ Anze Kopitar. Barkov is a first-time Selke finalist, adding to his three career nominations for the Lady Byng Trophy (2nd in 2015-16, 3rd in 2017-18, 1st in 2018-19). The 25-year-old Tampere, Finland, native is vying to become the fifth player in NHL history with career Selke and Lady Byng Trophy wins, joining Pavel Datsyuk, Ron Francis, Anze Kopitar and Ryan O’Reilly.
Patrice Bergeron, C, Boston Bruins
Bergeron was again dominant in the face-off circle, leading the NHL in face-off wins (714) and win percentage (career-best 62.3%). It marked the 12th consecutive season he has eclipsed the 56-percent plateau. He led the Bruins with a +27 rating and ranked third in the League in the puck possession metric SAT% (62.5), with Boston accounting for 62.5% of all shot attempts 5-on-5 when Bergeron was on the ice (min: 25 GP). The 35-year-old Ancienne-Lorette, Que., native is a Selke Trophy finalist for the 10th straight season, extending his own mark in that category. The streak also matches the 10 consecutive years of top-three Hart Trophy finishes by Wayne Gretzky (1980 through 1989) as the longest ever for a voted NHL Award. Bergeron’s four Selke wins (2011-12, 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2016-17) are tied for the most in NHL history with Bob Gainey, who captured the trophy each of the first four years it was awarded (1978-81 w/ MTL).
Mark Stone, RW, Vegas Golden Knights
Stone led all Vegas forwards in average ice time (19:04) on the team that posted the League’s best team goals-against figure (2.18 GA/game) and finished second in the League’s overall standings (40-14-2, 82 points). He also logged the third-most total ice time among forwards on the NHL’s best penalty-killing unit, as the Golden Knights allowed just 19 power-play goals in 144 times shorthanded (86.8%). The Vegas captain led the NHL in takeaways for the second time in three seasons with 58 and recorded a career-best +26 rating, tops among team forwards. Stone is a Selke Trophy finalist for the second time in three seasons (2nd in 2018-19) and an NHL Awards finalist for the third time (2nd, Calder Trophy, in 2014-15). The 29-year-old Winnipeg native is the second Golden Knights player announced as a 2020-21 NHL Awards finalist to date, joining goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury (Vezina).
The Frank J. Selke Trophy was presented in 1977 by the NHL’s Board of Governors in honor of Frank J. Selke, one of the great architects of Montreal’s and Toronto’s championship teams.