Carter Verhaeghe Scores OT Winner for Panthers Again

Carter Verhaeghe scored in overtime to lead the Florida Panthers to a 3-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning, giving them a 2-0 lead in the Eastern Conference first-round playoff series.

Oh, Mr. Overtime strikes again. Carter Verhaeghe, that guy, swooped in with a goal just 2:59 into OT. This clutch move handed the Florida Panthers a nail-biting 3-2 victory against the Tampa Bay Lightning. And it all went down Tuesday night at the Amerant Bank Arena, right in Sunrise, Florida.

Now, the Panthers? They’re sitting pretty with a 2-0 lead in this Eastern Conference first-round playoff series. Everyone’s eyes are now set on Game 3, happening Thursday night. The battleground shifts to Amalie Arena in Tampa.

Verhaeghe isn’t new to this game. Scoring his fifth career playoff overtime goal, he’s etched his name as the sixth player in NHL history to hit such a milestone. And guess what? All his overtime magic? It’s been in the last three seasons.

Remember last season’s playoffs? Verhaeghe was the hero then too. He sealed the deal in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final against the Vegas Golden Knights. Not stopping there, he also scored the Game 7 OT goal. That victory over the Boston Bruins was unexpected, to say the least. And let’s not forget, he had two OT winners in the 2022 first-round series against the Washington Capitals. Yep, including that decisive Game 6.

But Verhaeghe wasn’t the only Panther on the prowl Tuesday night. He also bagged an assist. Sam Bennett was in the mix too, with a goal and an assist. However, a bit of bad luck hit him. An upper-body injury took him out in the second period. A shot from his own teammate, Brandon Montour, was the culprit. Bennett didn’t make it back to the game.

Vladimir Tarasenko found the back of the net as well, while Matthew Tkachuk set up two goals. Between the pipes, Sergei Bobrovsky was solid, stopping 21 shots.

The Lightning weren’t just bystanders, though. Brayden Point and Steven Stamkos managed to light the lamp. Victor Hedman, ever reliable, contributed with two assists. And Andrei Vasilevskiy? The man faced a barrage, making 34 saves.

So, there you have it. The stage is set, and the series is heating up. Thursday can’t come soon enough.

Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson
Alex Thompson is a Senior Writer for HockeyMonitor. With a background in Sports Media, Alex joined the team in 2022. He focuses on providing the latest hockey news, game scores, and fresh NHL trade rumors.

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