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Oilers join rare company by forcing Game 7 in Stanley Cup Final after trailing 3-0

The Edmonton Oilers became the 211th team to trail 3-0 in a series in NHL history – they are now just one win away from becoming the fifth to complete the comeback.

The Oilers became the 10th team in NHL history to force a Game 7 after trailing a series three games to none on Friday after beating the Florida Panthers, 5-1.

After nearly 20,000 fans belted the Canadian national anthem at the top of their lungs, Warren Foegele somehow got them to scream even louder, finding the back of the net and giving the Oilers a 1-0 lead. As for Florida, they had just two shots on goal in the first period, one of which came from 170 feet away, so it was essentially an accident. It was the fewest shots they had in a period all year.

Edmonton started the second with a bang, with Adam Henrique scoring just 46 seconds into the period on a 2-on-1 following an ice-length pass. Florida’s Aleksander Barkov thought he answered back just 10 seconds later, but Edmonton successfully challenged that the Panthers were offsides, leaving it a 2-0 Oilers lead.

With 1:40 left in the period, Zach Hyman lit the lamp to make it 3-0. The Oilers scored twice in the middle frame, despite Florida outshooting them, 11-4.

Florida got on the board early in the third with a Barkov goal (for real this time), but it was too little too late, and the Oilers scored not one, but two empty-netters for good measure.

Afterward, the crowd chanted, very loudly, “We Want the Cup.”

Edmonton has outscored Florida, 18-5, in the last three games – in the first three, they had scored four to Florida’s 11.

This is just the third time that the Stanley Cup will see a seventh game after a team owned a 3-0 lead, and the first since 1945 – the Toronto Maple Leafs won both of those instances, completing the comeback in 1942, and then saving themselves from embarrassment three years later.

Oilers after scoring


It’s the first 3-0 comeback in the league since the Los Angeles Kings did so in the first round of the 2014 playoffs – they won that Game 7, and eventually won the Cup, winning two more Game 7s in the process.

The last team in the Big 4 leagues to force a Game 7 after trailing 3-0 was last year’s Boston Celtics – they lost to the eighth-seeded Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals, but got their revenge earlier this week by winning their first NBA title since 2008. They were the fourth NBA team to tie the series, but none have won it after facing the three-game deficit.

Only the 2004 Boston Red Sox have completed the comeback in Major League Baseball – the 2020 Houston Astros almost joined them, but lost Game 7 of the ALCS to the Tampa Bay Rays.

Oilers light the lamp

This series’ Game 7 will be back in Sunrise, Fla., where just about everyone will be in full-blown panic, on Monday night. 

With a win, it’ll be the Oilers’ first Cup since 1990, and Canada’s first since 1993. 

That would also mark the second year in a row the Panthers would lose in the Final, having fallen to the Vegas Golden Knights last year.

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