The Florida Panthers pulled away in the third period to defeat the Edmonton Oilers and take a 2-0 lead in the Stanley Cup Final

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Panthers players and fans celebrate during the second game.


Ivan Rodriguez scored two goals in the third period Florida Panthers He scored four unanswered goals to beat Edmonton Oilers 4-1 in the NHL Stanley Cup Final Monday to take a 2-0 lead at Amirant Bank Arena in Sunrise, Florida.

“It’s special. You try to embrace it.” Rodriguez said after the game. “I try to stay in the moment. They were two big wins for our team, and I think we have already turned the page and are preparing for the third game.

The Oilers got on the board first, on their first shot attempt, midway through the opening period. Oilers star Connor McDavid made a timely pass to Mattiaj Ekholm, who dribbled past two defenders and buried a wrister with a five-hole on Panthers goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky for the score.

In Game 1 of the series the Oilers failed to score a single goal despite outscoring the Panthers 32-18. On Monday, the roles were somewhat reversed with the Panthers outscoring the Oilers, 22-7 through the first two periods.

Shot attempt after shot attempt, the Panthers struggled to get past Oilers goaltender Stuart Skinner. However, Niko Mikkola found his moment of glory in the second period when he scored a single off Skinner’s glove side to tie the game 1-1. The Panthers’ problems finding the back of the net disappeared from that point on.

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The Panthers celebrate after Mikkola’s goal.

Rodriguez gave the Panthers a 2-1 lead just over three minutes into the third period, capitalizing on a costly Evan Bouchard turnover and wired in a shot that deflected off Ekholm and into the net.

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Rodriguez scored a power-play goal with 7:31 left in the third period, his second of the game and third of the series, to extend the Panthers’ lead to 3-1. The power play goal ended the Oilers’ streak of 34 consecutive penalty kills.

“I think our mentality changed in the third round, where we stopped treating it like a power play and started treating it like a 5-on-5. They come under a lot of pressure and if we try to play nice, it will never work,” Rodriguez said of the power-play goal. .

With his two goals, Rodriguez became the first player in Panthers franchise history to have a multi-goal game in the Stanley Cup Final.

Aaron Ekblad added the fourth goal for the Panthers, scoring an empty goal to seal the victory.

The Panthers lost captain Aleksandar Barkov midway through the third period after suffering a head kick from Oilers forward Leon Draisaitl. He will leave the game and will not return. Draisaitl received a minor penalty for roughing.

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Edmonton’s Vincent Desharnais of the Edmonton Oilers controls the puck against Sam Bennett of the Panthers.

After being shut out in the series opener, the Oilers once again failed to create much of an offensive lead.

Their seven shot attempts over the first two periods tied the record for the fewest ever in Stanley Cup Final history. Edmonton, which led the league in shots on goal during the regular season, finished with 19 attempts, and Bobrovsky made 18 saves.

“We feel like we came out here and played enough to get the split,” Edmonton coach Kris Knoblauch said He said after the match. “It doesn’t always happen. We just have to take it one game at a time.

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“I don’t see any reason to panic or do anything drastic… We just have to win the next game.”

Entering the series with a 1-8 record in the Stanley Cup Final, the Panthers will travel to Edmonton with a 2-0 lead in Game 3 on Thursday night.

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