Do not laugh now.
The Florida Panthers are on a mission.
The Panthers shut out the Carolina Hurricanes 1-0 to take a 3-0 series lead in the Eastern Conference Final.
Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 32 shots for his first playoff shutout, and the Panthers are on the brink of their first trip to the Stanley Cup Final in 27 years.
“We’re happy with the win, but the next game is going to be a big game. They have a great team,” Bobrovsky said. “They have great players. It’s going to be another fight. We’re definitely excited for it.”
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Going back to Game 1 of Round 2 against Toronto, Bobrovsky has not allowed more than two goals in any contest, with 296 saves on 309 shots — a .958 save percentage.
Out of the last 110 shots he’s faced, Bobrovsky has stopped 109 — starting in the third period of the four-OT win in Game 1.
1996 was the last year in which the Panthers played for the Stanley Cup, but they can clinch a trip to the title round with a win in Game 4 on Wednesday.
There have been 261 minutes, and 38 seconds of hockey in this series — just over 13 periods, thanks to all the overtimes — and neither team has led by more than one goal at any time.