Verhaeghe scores in OT, Panthers oust league-best Bruins
BOSTON (AP) — Brandon Montour tied it with 1 minute left in regulation, and Carter Verhaeghe scored the game-winner at 8:35 of overtime to lead the Florida Panthers to a 4-3 victory in Game 7 on Sunday night and eliminate the record-setting Boston Bruins from the playoffs.
Sam Reinhart also scored and Sergei Bobrovsky made 28 saves as the Panthers won three in a row after falling behind 3-1 in the series to advance in the postseason for just the second time since reaching the Stanley Cup Final in 1996. They will open the second round against the Maple Leafs in Toronto on Tuesday night.
Boston rallied from a two-goal deficit to take a 3-2 lead, but Florida pulled Bobrovsky for one final push and Montour tied it with his second of the game. Verhaeghe won it on a wrist shot from the right faceoff circle that just made it under the crossbar.
That eliminated the Bruins, who set NHL records with 65 wins and 135 points in the regular season but become the second Presidents’ Trophy winner in five years to lose in the first round. The Bruins had not lost three games in a row all season.
David Krejci and Tyler Bertuzzi scored after Boston fell behind 2-0, and David Pastrnak gave the Bruins their only lead of the game on a power-play goal 55 seconds into the third period. Jeremy Swayman, making his first start of the series as a sub for likely Vezina Trophy winner Linus Ullmark, stopped 32 shots.
KRAKEN 2, AVALANCHE 1
DENVER (AP) — Oliver Bjorkstrand scored twice, Philipp Grubauer was stellar in stopping 33 shots and Seattle eliminated defending Stanley Cup champion Colorado in Game 7.
The Kraken became the first expansion team to beat the reigning Stanley Cup champs in their inaugural playoff series, according to NHL Stats.
Next up for the second-year Kraken is a second-round series against the Stars that opens in Dallas on Tuesday night.
Mikko Rantanen was credited with a power-play goal for Colorado after a shot by Nathan MacKinnon clipped him and went in. MacKinnon appeared to score early in the third period to tie it at 2, but Seattle challenged the play and the goal was disallowed due to Colorado being offside.
The Avalanche have now lost their last six Game 7s.
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The Associated Press