FLORIDA – Brandon Montour came out to play heroes Saturday night at the BB&T Center, scoring his tenth goal of the season in overtime to give the Florida Panthers a 3-2 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs.
This gain thus extends Andrew Brunette’s troop’s winning streak to 13 and, by extension, a franchise record for the Florida squad. The Panthers haven’t lost a game since March 27, when the team ironically lost 5-2 to those same Maple Leafs.
Florida had already gone on a 12-game winning streak in the 2015-16 season.
If the Panthers win the final four games of their regular season, they could tie the record for the longest winning streak in NHL history. A record set by the Pittsburgh Penguins during the 1992-1993 season when they won 17 straight games. A streak that was almost dethroned in 2016-2017 by the Columbus Blue Jackets, who had scored 16 straight wins.
A festive evening signed Bobrovsky
Goalkeeper Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 34 of 36 shots in the win to propel him to the NHL’s top goaltender this season for most wins with 39 wins in 52 games. He surpasses Nashville Predators goaltender Juuse Saros, who has 38 wins since the start of the campaign.
Like his team, the Panthers goalkeeper is enjoying an impressive streak, having won in each of his last 13 outings.
The Russian goalkeeper seems to have inspired his teammates. After 20 minutes, Florida trailed the Leafs 2-0 with goals from Mitch Marner and Justin Holl.
Bobrovsky pulled off several small miracles in the second half and spoiled Auston Matthews’ return to play, the striker failing to find the back of the net despite seven shots on goal.
The Panthers then managed to deceive the vigilance of Jack Campbell three times. Claude Giroux participated in all of his team’s goals by scoring his 21st of the season and being an accomplice on captain Aleksander Barkov’s 39th goal and of course, Brandon Montour’s 10th in overtime. The Franco-Ontarian has also enjoyed success since his debut under the hot Florida sun, having now scored 20 points in just 16 games.
Jonathan Huberdeau had an assist on Giroux’s goal in the second period. The Quebecer has now produced 114 points this season, which puts him a little closer to forward Connor McDavid, who sits at the top of the Bettman circuit’s leading scorers with 116 points. Huberdeau has amassed 30 points (11 goals and 19 assists) in his last 17 games.
The President’s trophy at the Panthers?
With 58 wins this season, the Panthers rank first in the NHL with 122 points, six more than the Colorado Avalanche (116 pts).
With four games to go, Florida could claim the first President’s Trophy in their history. To do that, they’ll have to get the better of the Lightning on Sunday, the Bruins on Tuesday, the Senators on Thursday and finally against the Canadiens next Friday.