Stanley Cup Final Game 7 live blog: Oilers vs. Panthers

SUNRISE, Fla. — Welcome to Game 7 of the 2024 Stanley Cup Final. After an 82-game regular season and three rounds of playoffs, it all came down to one game between the Florida Panthers and Edmonton Oilers. Editor-in-Chief Bill Price was at Amerant Bank Arena for this historic game to provide all the sights, sounds and highlights in our Game 7 live blog.

10:54 p.m. ET

And that’s it. The Florida Panthers are the 2023-24 Stanley Cup champions after a heart-stopping 2-1 win in Game 7 on Monday.

The Oilers gave it all they had, coming back from 3-0 in the series, but could not get it done tonight.

Congrats to the Panthers. It’s party time here.

Thanks for following along all series.

10:51 p.m. ET 

We have 1:35 left to go and this place is absolutely bonkers.

The Oilers are throwing everything they can at Sergei Bobrovsky but can’t score.

Connor McDavid had a nice tip attempt right in front with 2:40 left but missed the net.

The line of McDavid and Leon Draisaitl was out for a long time, and now the Oilers call time out to get them rest for one more push.

10:47 p.m. ET

The fans in the lower bowl have been pretty much standing this entire third period, and really, how could you sit down? This game has it all, and it’s still not decided with 3:29 to go.

Can the Oilers tie it? Can the Panthers hold on? When do you pull Stuart Skinner if you are the Oilers? Do all the fans heading to the Elbo Room postgame know it’s a cash-only place?

The Panthers are putting on some offensive pressure, with Aleksander Barkov and Vladimir Tarasenko getting decent shots on goal.

Now “Livin’ On a Prayer” by Bon Jovi is playing and even after it stops, the entire arena is singing along. Will the Panthers or Oilers have their prayers answered?

10:41 p.m. ET

The Oilers keep pushing and pushing, but time is winding down. There is now 5:54 left in the third period, and the Panthers still lead 2-1.

Sergei Bobrovsky, who looked a bit shaky in Games 4-6, is sharp tonight, with 20 saves so far.

It’s very tense in here, with the fans ready to party but knowing one goal from Edmonton can change the whole complexion of this game, this series, this entire season.

10:37 p.m. ET

The Oilers nearly tied it with a scramble in front, but Connor McDavid and then Zach Hyman can’t pull the trigger with the puck near their sticks and the net wide open.

It looks like Gustav Forsling made the play to take the puck off McDavid’s stick and then Hyman, who was on his knees, couldn’t get enough on his shot.

My goodness.

Don’t go anywhere.

A few minutes before that scramble, Sam Reinhart of the Panthers had the chance to pretty much end this game, but Leon Draisaitl made a good defensive play to keep it a one-goal game. Now, the Oilers need a goal to tie the game.

10:31 p.m. ET

We have 9:13 to play, and it’s desperation time for the Oilers.

Coach Kris Knoblauch just had Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl on the ice at the same time in an attempt to get a goal, which is what they need to tie this game and prevent the Panthers from winning the Cup.

One interesting stat for the Oilers: McDavid has zero points and two shots on goal in the past two games. Clearly, Florida focused on shutting him down.

There is still a sentiment that even if Edmonton loses this game, he could still be awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP, but that will be a bitter pill for him to swallow if he can’t win the Cup.

The Oilers are trying to make a push, forcing a few icings from the Panthers, but again, have nothing to show for it as far as a goal.

10:23 p.m. ET

The Oilers dodged a huge bullet at the end of the power play with Sam Bennett somehow getting the puck on his stick all alone in the crease, but Stuart Skinner shut the door to keep it a 2-1 game.

The Florida power play fails again, and Edmonton still has a chance with under 14 minutes to play. It feels like much more than a one-goal lead, but that’s all it is.

The Panthers seem to have two players near Connor McDavid every time he touches the puck, which is smart. You have to figure we are going to see a ton of McDavid in the last 12:52 of this game.

The fans are chanting “Let’s Go Panthers,” and as each second ticks down, the excitement grows, but so does the angst. This could be the longest 13 minutes in the lives of anyone associated with the Panthers.

For the Oilers, it will probably go too fast.

10:17 p.m. ET

The Oilers are trying desperately to score, maybe too much. Evan Bouchard just took a penalty for high sticking, and Florida has a chance to build its lead on a power play that has not been very good. A goal here could lock up the Cup with the way this one is going.

The fans are chanting “Skin-ner, Skin-ner” at Stuart Skinner. I think they stole that from Bart Simpson, who I’m sure has heckled his favorite principal.

10:12 p.m. ET

And what could be the final period of the 2023-24 NHL season is underway.

The Panthers are 20 minutes from the Stanley Cup. The Oilers need a goal to keep the season going.

What will happen?

By the way, can you name the last team to win Game 7 of the Cup Final despite trailing in the third period? That’s right, the 1942 Toronto Maple Leafs, the last team to win a Cup Final after losing the first three games.

Here we go.

9:54 p.m. ET

We have one period of regulation hockey left in the 2023-24 season, which is somewhat hard to believe, but here we are.

The Florida Panthers, who lost in the Cup Final last season, are 20 minutes away from winning the Cup for the first time and preventing what would have been an epic collapse.

The Edmonton Oilers, who have had such a magical season, bouncing back time after time, need a goal and need to stop Florida from scoring to keep their season alive a little longer.

9:49 p.m. ET

We have 1:24 left here in the second, and it’s 2-1 Florida.

One reason the Panthers lost Games 4-6 was because Carter Verhaeghe and Sam Reinhart were somewhat non-factors, but that is not the case tonight. Verhaeghe has a goal and an assist, and Reinhart has what is now the go-ahead goal, coming at 15:11 of the second.

There is a shovel break with 1:24 left in the second, this place is rocking, and the Oilers are in need of something positive. They have actually played a pretty strong second period, but one breakdown and a goal Stuart Skinner would like to have back are the difference.

There was just a T-shirt toss, but no sign of T-shirt guy from Edmonton.

But Stanley C Panther is up on the seats getting the fans even more wound up than they are with a 2-1 lead and the Stanley Cup 21:24 away.

9:42 p.m. ET

The Panthers take the lead on an innocent-looking wrist shot from Sam Reinhart with 4:49 left in the second. As great as Stuart Skinner has been in the Final, that’s one he has to stop.

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