Driedger gets third shutout as Panthers beat Lightning 4-0
Chris Driedger stopped 30 shots to record his third shutout of the season, Juho Lammikko scored a short-handed goal, and the Florida Panthers secured home-ice advantage for the opening round of the Stanley Cup playoffs with a 4-0 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning in the regular season finale for both clubs.
Florida Panthers off to 2nd-best start in franchise history
Florida’s 6-1-2 start through nine games is the second-best in franchise history, topped only by the 6-0-3 record to open the 1996-97 season. “We've been consistent in most games," Florida coach Joel Quenneville said. Starting poorly, however, has pretty much snuffed out some Panthers seasons before they even started. The five Florida teams that went to the playoffs — 1995-96, 1996-97, 1999-2000, 2011-12 and 2015-16 — averaged 12 standings points through the season’s first nine games. There’s obviously a long way to go, but the Panthers finally have the start they wanted.
Bubble hockey champions: Tampa Bay Lightning win Stanley Cup
The triumph of winning the NHL championship in a bubble was certainly no less sweet for the Tampa Bay Lightning. He played 964 regular-season and 137 playoff games to get to this point, losing in the final twice before. Tampa Bay had Point and No. Coach Jon Cooper thought the attitude needed to change from wanting to beat every opponent 9-0 because that’s not realistic in playoff hockey. ... Alexander Volkov made his NHL playoff debut for Tampa Bay, which also saw Patrick Maroon become just the eighth player to win the Cup in back-to-back seasons with different teams (St. Louis).