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Panthers defeat Rangers in Game 6, reach Stanley Cup Final


Panthers defeat Rangers in Game 6, reach Stanley Cup Final

Florida, which lost to the Vegas Golden Knights in five games last season, will play either the Edmonton Oilers or Dallas Stars. Edmonton leads that best-of-7 series 3-2.

“Last year was the first year we went that far and it felt amazing,” Panthers captain Aleksander Barkov said. “You wanted to do everything you could to get back here. We all know it’s not one big thing, it’s not one day. You have to start the grind in the summer, in training camp. … We all had the same goal to get better and get back. Here we are again.”

Sam Bennett and Vladimir Tarasenko scored, and Sergei Bobrovsky made 23 saves for the Panthers, who are the No. 1 seed from the Atlantic Division.

Artemi Panarin scored, and Igor Shesterkin made 32 saves for the Rangers, who were the No. 1 seed from the Metropolitan Division and won the Presidents’ Trophy as the NHL’s top team during the regular season.

“It was difficult to score, generating the quality we wanted to generate,” New York coach Peter Laviolette said. “We knew that coming in from the way [Florida] finished the season and from the first and second round. They weren’t giving up a lot. Ultimately, it is something we were able to do pretty consistently through the course of the year. Look at the scores, the games. Low-scoring, one-goal games. Ultimately, finding the next goal inside of a game could be the difference.”

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