Florida Panthers vs. New York Rangers Game 3 Recap | 05/26/2024

Reinhart scores on the power play during the first period. (John McCall/South Florida Sun Sentinel)

The Panthers headed back to Sunrise with the series tied at one apiece. A shutout win in Game 1 and unlucky bounces in Game 2 split the series in New York, but the Panthers have responded well after losses so far this postseason. Game 3 ended in a heartbreaker loss for the Cats after they erased a 2 goal deficit to tie it in the third and send the game into OT. Florida did so many things right in this game and should have won it, but lucky bounces off posts for the Rangers put two of the five goals in the net. It’s a tough break for the Panthers, but this is the Playoffs, and it doesn’t matter how you score, just that you do. Bobrovsky’s been stellar for the Cats this playoff, but against New York, it might be worth looking at giving Stolarz a game; he’s a much bigger goaltender and would make putting the shots to the top corner of the net a lot harder for the Rangers to make. That’s the area of the net both teams are attacking the most at the moment. Barkov, Reinhart, and Forsling all had great games for the Panthers. The Cats won the special teams fight today. However, Florida needs more blocked shot defensive plays and to pay more attention to the lesser-known Rangers players.

Top Players Show Up:

Amidst the depth-scoring drought, the top Florida players came up big during Sunday’s game. Sam Reinhart got the Cats on the board first with a power play goal just under three minutes into the game. His backhanded shot went right over Sheterkin’s blocker for the quick 1-0 lead. Two quick goals put the Panthers down 1-2 going into the final six minutes of the period. However, Reinhart struck again on the power play as his pass hit off a Ranger skate and went in the net. Things were tied at two heading into the second period. A bad middle period put the Cats down 2-4 heading into the final period. In the third, adjusted lines jumpstarted the offense, and Barkov tipped in a shot from Verhaeghe to get Florida within one. A dagger of a shot from Forsling beat Shesterkin on the glove side to tie the game back up and send it to OT. Both Barkov and Forsling were fantastic defensively, breaking up plays in the Panthers’ zone and neutral zone. They play strong two-way games, and when Forsling jumps into the offense, he has a deadly shot that can give opponents serious problems. His goal was the exact same shot and goal that won the Panthers the Boston series: shot from the faceoff dot to the far side of the net, beating the goalie on the glove side.

Special Teams Fight Won:

Florida’s penalty kill has been its bread and butter all season long, and it’s continued its dominance against New York. The Rangers have yet to score a power play goal, and the Cat’s penalty kill has killed 26 of its last 27 power plays during the playoffs. The power play also showed signs of life with Reinhart getting his two goals on the man advantage. Even on the last power play the Panthers got, even though they didn’t score, they were shooting the puck more – specifically Verhaeghe, who had about four shots on goal in the final man advantage. The only dark spot on the special teams out of Game 3 is them giving up a short-handed goal, and that’s a big downside. The Panthers had a four-minute power play and were too lax getting back into their zone, which allowed Goodrow to score short-handed. Overall, special teams did it’s job, but that shorty hurts for sure. It’s frustrating to see the great penalty kill performances get wasted by the power play lacking a bit of urgency.

Defense Needs To Step Up:

Florida’s not typically a high-block shot team, but at this point in the series, this team needs to block more shots. Through two periods, the Panthers had only six blocked shots to New York’s 16 SOG and finished with 14 blocked shots to the Rangers’ 23 SOG. The Panthers don’t always need to block shots to win games, but in the games that they’ve won this postseason, the majority of them have had the Cats blocking shots in the same range as their opponents or with a better ratio of blocked shots to SOG. Game 1 of this series with the Rangers the Panthers blocked 19 shots while New York blocked 18, even in Game 2, that they lost in OT but it was a one goal tie game for nearly the entire game, they blocked 23 shots to the Rangers’ 25. The disparity on Sunday was 14 blocked shots for Florida to 37 blocked shots for the Rangers. That means that for every SOG the Panthers were getting the Rangers blocked the same number of shot attempts. The Florida defense overall was good but it wasn’t great, it certainly lacked early in the game and broke down in OT which allowed the game winning goal. It’s a frustrating loss for Florida because they dominated so much of the game from time in the offensive zone to shots to faceoffs. But poor play in a few key time frames and fortunate bounces off of posts gave the Rangers the win and the 1-2 series lead. This is also the first time in the playoffs that Florida has lost two straight games. They’ll look to bounce back on Tuesday for Game 4 and force a Game 6. Game 4 is set for 8 pm EST/7 pm CT in Sunrise.

In this week's episode we talk about Schnieder, Lindgren's future with NYR, and with Drury seemingly done with off seaon moves the outlook of this team.How to support us and our sponsors:Columbia Sports ApparelESPN+ SubscriptionFanaticsDraft Kings – CODE ITRThanks for listening! Please rate and review our show on your favorite listening platform. Check out our partner's website at www.insidetherink.com for all your latest hockey news.
  1. Running it Back
  2. Guest Will Wright
  3. There's more to come……….Right ?
  4. Guest Colin Stephenson
  5. Guest HockeyStatMiner

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Ville Heinola Inks Two-Year Contract Extension in Winnipeg

Another restricted free agent (RFA) is off the board for the Winnipeg Jets, this time it’s Ville Heinola who signed a two-year contract extension carrying an average annual value (AAV) of $800,000. The contract will expire at the end of the 2025-26 season and Heinola will remain an RFA with arbitration rights. The contract will […]

Read More

An Email Interview with Florida Everblades Broadcaster Jake Maurice

When you grow up in a family that has a member who is involved with hockey or loves the game of hockey, there is always a good chance that you will get involved with the game in some way as well. One such person is Florida Everblades broadcaster Jake Maurice. Jake’s father is Florida Panthers’ […]

Read More

Opinion: Why Nebraska Is An Untapped Expansion Market

With the Arizona Coyotes franchise moving to Utah, plenty of discussions have been sparked about where NHL teams should be located. That coupled with what was a surprise for me personally, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman stating during the All-Star break that Omaha, Nebraska, had expressed interest in getting an expansion team. That announcement has made […]

Read More