The impossible Panthers playoff run


Boston Globe via Getty Images

Boston, MA – April 30: Florida Panthers players celebrate their overtime win. The Panthers beat the Boston Bruins, 4-3, in Game 7 of their Eastern Conference First Round Series. (Photo by John Tlumacki/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

The NHL playoffs have been full of surprises and upsets this year, leaving fans on the edge of their seats, like the underdog of the Florida Panthers knocking out the best team on paper stylistically in the past 100 years of NHL hockey, the Boston Bruins. No matter the team’s past, no one can take all variables into account and predict what has happened so far. These playoffs have been crazy and will only continue to shock the world, just like the Florida Panthers have been doing and will continue to do.

Back to touching on the Panthers beating the Bruins. The Panthers were 43 points behind the Bruins heading into the first round. The Panthers had to pull off the impossible. They were up against all odds. They had worse goal-tending, defense, forwards, and special teams. I cannot emphasize enough how much the Florida Panthers were underdogs. They came out and went down 3-1 in the first four games. They would have to win three straight games against the best team of basically all-time in the NHL. They came out fighting and fighting, and before fans knew it, the series was tied 3-3, and in game 7, they were headed to Boston. The Panthers were trailing by one goal with 1 minute left. And with one shot from the point, it bounced off the pad and banged the right bag in to tie it up. Boston was stunned, but the Panthers still had to score and win. Overtime started, and it was in fourth till the Panthers held the  Bruins in, and it was a pass to the top right circle to Carter Verhaeghe, who went top right and scored the goal of all time for the Panthers. They, at that moment, just stylistically pulled off the greatest up in the past 100-plus years in NHL history.

They then entered the next round against the Maple Leafs, and being the underdog once again, they showed up, and they brought the same killer instinct to Toronto. The Panthers absolutely flamed them taking a 4-1 series win. The Panthers were all over them, and they completely shut down Auston Matthew of the Maple Leafs. All while, Matthew Tkachuk put up point after point while Sergi Bobrovsky stood on his head, not allowing more than two goals.

After coming out on top, they moved on to play the mighty Hurricanes, and what happened in this series was shocking. Once again, you called it the Panthers were the underdogs, but wow, they took that energy, and Steem rolled the Hurricanes 4-0 in the series. The Panther absolutely flooded the Canes right out of the gate. The Hurricanes never had a chance; the persistent play and heart of the Panthers have just been too much for any team. And after this performance, they earned themselves a trip to their first-ever Stanley Cup finals.

Upsets are what make sports so thrilling to watch. No matter how many experts predict certain outcomes or which team looks stronger on paper, anything can happen once those skates hit the ice. This shows us not to count anyone when going into the season. It’s why we love to watch, and it’s why we keep coming back for more.

As the playoffs continue, there will surely be even more surprises in store.  And the one that all the fans are wondering about is how far will the underdog Panthers will venture in these playoffs. They have already written history, but will they write more?