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On Thursday night, the Vegas Golden Knights will meet the Florida Panthers for Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final. Vegas won the first two games of this series on their home ice, with the series shifting to Florida for the first time in this contest. With Florida already down two games, this contest is a must-win for Florida, who will try desperately to avoid falling behind 3-0 in this spot.
The Vegas Golden Knights have been as close to perfect as a team can be over the first two games of the Stanley Cup Final. They won the first two games of this series at home, scoring 12 goals in those two contests and neutralizing the previously untouchable goaltender of the Panthers in Sergei Bobrovsky. Now the question is whether the Knights can bring their high-powered offense on the road to take a 3-0 lead.
Going into this series, so much of the talk was about the play of Bobrovsky of the Panthers. However, the real star in goal so far this series has been Adin Hill of the Golden Knights, who has led a group that has allowed just four goals in this series so far. If Hill can continue to be great away from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, and play well in this contest, the Golden Knights could take a 3-0 lead.
Offensively, the Knights have been so balanced throughout the Stanley Cup Final, which has been incredibly impressive. They have had five different goal scorers in each of the first two games of this series. It may be harder for them to find so many scoring options on the road in Game 3, but it cannot be ruled out based on how well they have been playing all postseason long.
The Florida Panthers are in danger of their Cinderella run coming to an end in the Stanley Cup Final, as they trail the Vegas Golden Knights 2-0 in this series. They have not been able to slow down all of the scoring options that the Knights have at their disposal. But with this series heading home to Florida for Game 3, the Panthers will aim to turn things around in this must-win situation.
For the Panthers to have any chance to win this game and get back into this series, they are going to need Bobrovsky to step up once again. After playing so well in the Eastern Conference playoffs, Bobrovsky is allowing four goals per game in the last series of the year. Florida simply cannot afford for him to turn back into a proverbial pumpkin in this series, and he will need to return to form starting tonight.
Meanwhile, the Panthers offense has stalled out early in this series as well, as they have scored just four goals in the series. Matthew Tkachuk has just one goal in this series so far, with that goal coming deep into garbage time of Game 2. He must be more impactful as well if the Panthers are going to turn things around in Game 3 and bring themselves back into contention to lift the cup when this series is done.
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Jay Sanin is a sports bettor and writer from New York. He has been handicapping since the moment he was old enough to gamble legally, with his specialties being niche sports like the WNBA and XFL. He’s been told he has a voice for radio. He also has a face for radio.More info on Jay Sanin
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