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ICYMI: NHL Morning Skate, Stanley Cup Qualifiers Edition for Tuesday, August 4, 2020

 

THREE HARD LAPS

Connor McDavid concluded Monday’s action with his first career postseason hat trick as the Oilers evened their best-of-five series with the Blackhawks at one game apiece.

Andrei Svechnikov scored the first hat trick of the 2020 Stanley Cup Qualifiers as the Hurricanes pushed the Rangers to the brink of elimination.

* Teams that win Game 3 after splitting the first two games in a best-of-five series own an all-time series record of 21-7 (.750). Teams that win each of the first two games in a best-of-five series own an all-time series record of 55-1 (.982).

McDAVID SPARKS OILERS WITH THREE-GOAL PERFORMANCE. . .
The Blackhawks erased a two-goal deficit to tie the game, but Oilers captain Connor McDavid (3-0—3) completed his first career postseason hat trick to ignite Edmonton’s six-goal outing and secure a win in Game 2.

* McDavid became the fourth Oilers player in 20 years to score a postseason hat trick, joining teammate Leon Draisaitl (Game 6 of the 2017 R2), Bill Guerin (Game 4 of the 2000 CQF) and Doug Weight (Game 3 of the 2000 CQF).

* He scored the first of his three goals 19 seconds into the contest; it marked the second-fastest goal to begin a playoff contest in Oilers history, behind Fernando Pisani (0:16 in Game 5 of the 2006 SCF).

Of note: Glenn Anderson scored 0:10 into the first period in Game 4 of the 1988 Stanley Cup Final on May 24 – a game suspended due to a power failure. Individual goalie and skater stats from the suspended game were counted, but records were not recognized because the game was not completed.

* Monday’s contest marked McDavid’s second three-point game in as many contests after he collected 1-2—3 in Game 1. He became the ninth different player in franchise history to post at least three points in consecutive playoff games and first in 28 years when Bernie Nicholls and Joe Murphy accomplished the feat during Game 2 and Game 3 of the 1992 Division Semifinals.

. . . WHILE SVECHNIKOV JOINS ELITE COMPANY WITH POSTSEASON HAT TRICK
Twenty-year-old Andrei Svechnikov accounted for three of Carolina’s four goals to become the first player in Hurricanes/Whalers franchise history to score a hat trick in the postseason and the eighth different player in NHL history to do so before age 21.

* Svechnikov recorded his second career multi-goal game in the postseason, following a 2-0—2 outing in his playoff debut last year. He became the 10th player in NHL history to record two-plus multi-goal games in the postseason before age 21 – a cohort which also features Carolina head coach Rod Brind’Amour, who achieved the feat as a 19-year-old in 1990 (w/ STL).

JETS, HURRICANES EARN WINS IN FIRST HALF OF BACK-TO-BACKS
The Jets and Hurricanes each earned wins in the first half of their back-to-back sets, with Winnipeg evening their qualifying round series at 1-1 and Carolina taking a 2-0 lead in theirs. One back-to-back set is scheduled for each best-of-five series in the qualifying round.

Jansen Harkins scored 7:18 into his playoff debut to help the Jets – who were playing without the services of forwards Mark Scheifele and Patrik Laine – build a 2-0 lead. The Flames evened the score, but Nikolaj Ehlers netted the go-ahead goal in third period to power Winnipeg to a Game 2 win. It also was the first goal of Ehlers’ playoff career (1-7—8 in 23 GP).

* Winnipeg and Calgary are set to contest Game 3 today at Rogers Place after posting similar records in the second half of back-to-back sets during the 2019-20 regular season (CGY: 5-4-0; WPG: 4-5-0).

* The last time Calgary played back-to-back postseason games was to open the 2008 Conference Quarterfinals. The only instance of the Jets/Thrashers doing so was during the 2007 Conference Quarterfinals when the franchise was based in Atlanta.

* The Hurricanes hold a 2-0 lead in a best-of-five series for the second time in franchise history. The first came as the Whalers against the Quebec Nordiques in the 1986 Division Semifinals, a series they eventually swept.

* Carolina and New York are set to contest Game 3 today at Scotiabank Arena after also posting similar records in the second half of back-to-back sets in 2019-20 (CAR: 7-3-2; NYR: 7-4-1).
* The Hurricanes last contested back-to-back playoff games during the 2006 Conference Semifinals en route to winning the Stanley Cup. The last time the Rangers played back-to-back postseason games was during the 2014 Second Round, also en route to the Final.
CROSBY, PENGUINS EDGE CANADIENS TO DRAW EVEN IN SERIES
Sidney Crosby scored the first of three Pittsburgh goals and Matt Murray turned aside 27 shots to help the Penguins even their best-of-five series with the Canadiens at one game apiece. Crosby, who climbed multiple postseason lists in the effort, became the ninth player in NHL history to score at least 16 game-opening goals in the postseason.

* The Penguins snapped the longest stretch of consecutive playoff losses in franchise history (7 games). Pittsburgh has had only three winless stretches of seven or more games during the regular season (spanning seasons or otherwise) since Crosby made his League debut in 2005-06 (all three came in that season).

* Pittsburgh is in search of their first best-of-five series win during the postseason after falling in the fifth and final game in each of the three previous matchups (1980 PRLM1981 PRLM and 1982 DSF). Additionally, Game 5 of the 1981 Preliminary Round (vs. STL) and 1982 Division Semifinals (vs. NYI) both required overtime to decide a winner.

LIGHTNING, GOLDEN KNIGHTS WIN CLOSE CONTESTS IN ROUND-ROBIN OPENERS
After a buzzer-beating goal Sunday for Colorado, round robin games again went down to the wire Monday with the Lightning earning a shootout win and the Golden Knights staging the first multi-goal third period comeback win in franchise history.
* After Tampa Bay surrendered a 2-0 lead late in the second period, Brayden Point (0-1—1) and Nikita Kucherov (1-0—1) each scored in the shootout as the Lightning held on to win their round-robin opener.

 

* Kucherov scored his 30th career postseason goal (66 GP) to become the second player in franchise history to score 30 or more playoff goals, following Martin St. Louis (33 in 63 GP).

Mark Stone (1-1—2) scored the first of four unanswered goals to help the Golden Knights earn a win in their first game of the Round Robin. Stone led all players with 12 points (6-6—12 in 7 GP) during the 2019 First Round.

* Vegas won a game in which it trailed by multiple goals in the third period for the first time (regular season or playoffs). It was the 12th time that they have overcome a multi-goal deficit at any point in the game to win (and first such instance in the postseason). The largest deficit the Golden Knights have overcome to win a game is three goals, on Jan. 4, 2020 against the Blues (5-4 OT W) – their next opponent in the Round Robin.

 

* Before the game, Golden Knights forward Ryan Reaves and goaltender Robin Lehner knelt alongside Stars forwards Tyler Seguin and Jason Dickinson during both anthems to bring awareness to racial injustice in both countries.

 

PREVIEW OF TODAY’S ACTION
Six series return to the ice Tuesday, with the Hurricanes having an opportunity to become the first team to advance from the Qualifying Round into the First Round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

* Teams that win Game 3 after splitting the first two games in a best-of-five series own an all-time series record of 21-7 (.750). That total includes four series involving non-NHL clubs (1918 SCF1921 SCF1922 SCF1923 SC SF).

* Teams that win each of the first two games in a best-of-five series own an all-time series record of 55-1 (.982). That total includes three series involving non-NHL clubs (1920 SCF1925 SCF1926 SCF).

 

PUBLICATION WRITTEN BY NHL PUBLIC RELATIONS; COURTESY NHLmedia.com

 

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