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Kevin’s Notebook: Last second heroics aren't as rare as you think they are

May 20, 2022, 3:55 PM ET [7 Comments]
Kevin Allen
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When Ross Colton scored with 3.8 seconds left in regulation to give the Tampa Bay Lightning a 2-1 playoff win against the Florida Panthers it seemed like the goal was one of the all-time latest regulation postseason game-winners.

But it wasn’t. Not even close.

According to the NHL, six other players have scored a later playoff goal:

Nazem Kadri (Colorado), 2020, Quarterfinals, 19:59

Jussi Jokinen (Carolina), 2009, 19:59, Quarterfinals, 19:59

Tyler Johnson (Tampa Bay), 2015, Second round, 1958

Joel Ward (Washington). 2015, Second round, 19:58

Bob Pulford (Toronto), 1964, Stanley Cup Final, 19:58

Mikko Makela (NY Islanders)< 1987, Division Final, 19:57

Ross Colton (Tampa Bay), 2022, Conference Semifinals, 19:57

2. All four Montreal players traded at the trade deadline are still in the playoffs: Ben Chiarot (Florida), Artturi Lehkonen (Colorado), Tyler Toffoli (Calgary) and Brett Kulak (Edmonton.

3. Only two of the 10 highest-paid players (No. 1 Connor McDavid and No. 2 Artemi Panarin) and five of the top 20-paid players in the NHL remain in the playoffs No. 12 Sergei Bobrovsky, No. 19 Nikita Kucherov and No. 20 Andrei Vasilevskiy are the others.

4. Forty-three years ago today, on May 20, 1979, the World Hockey Association played its last game. The Winnipeg Jets beat the Edmonton Oilers 7-3 to win the Avco Cup. The late tough guy Dave Semenko scored the last WHA goal

5. Anaheim Ducks player Dominik Simon got into an altercation with Czech teammate Filip Hronek at the World Championships. After leaving the tournament in Finland, Simon took responsibility for the situation.

6. The Philadelphia Flyers are interested in Barry Trotz. That makes sense because Trotz knows the Metropolitan Division and always makes teams better defensively.

7, The farther the Tampa Bay Lightning advance the more visibility Bolts assistant coach Derek Lalonde gets as a candidate for NHL head coaching vacancies. Steve Yzerman hired him in Tampa Bay. It’s presumed Yzerman could have interest in him now in Detroit.

8. Three of the four former WHA teams are among the final eight in the playoffs (Edmonton, Carolina (Hartford) and Colorado (Quebec)

9. This is the first time Calgary and Edmonton have met in the Battle of Alberta playoff series in 31 years. That’s difficult to fathom. By contrast, two of the current second-round matchups are repeats of 2021 series -- Colorado vs St Louis and Florida vs Tampa Bay. The Rangers and Carolina met in the 2020 playoffs.

10. Someone on Ebay is trying to sell a dual In The Game Alexander Ovechkin/Sidney Crosby 1 of 1 jersey patch card for $199,999.87. It’s Beckett Graded 9.5. It makes the 1979 Wayne Gretzky Topps rookie card, graded PSA 9, seem like a bargain at $125,000.

11. On this date, May 20th, in 1988, Wayne Gretzky registered a goal and two assists to help the Edmonton Oilers down the Boston Bruins 4-2 in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final. Nobody would have guessed that less than four months later Gretzky would be a Los Angeles King.

12. Joonas Korpisalo went from a salary of $3.4 million this season to a salary of $1.3 million on his new one-year deal with the Columbus Blue Jackets. His goals-against average was 4.15 this season and 3.30 in 2020-21. His save percentage was .877 this season.

13. Dallas Stars’ Rick Bowness, 67, the NHL’s oldest coach, has stepped down. The Dallas Stars now join the Detroit Red Wings, Philadelphia Flyers, Winnipeg Jets, Vegas Golden Knights and Chicago Blackhawks as teams actively looking for a head coach.

14. The Vancouver Giants selected defender Chloe Primerano in the 2022 Western Hockey League Prospects Draft, making her the first female to be selected in a WHL Bantam Draft. She was drafted in the 13th round, at No. 267.

15. The Filip Forsberg situation in Nashville has similarities to the Steven Stamkos situation when he was a potential UFA and the John Tavares situation when he was with the New York Islanders. That’s not comforting to Predators fans because while Stamkos did choose to stay with Tampa Bay, Tavares left the Islanders. GM David Poile said he has multiple backup plans if Forsberg leaves through free agency.

16. Seven years ago today, May 15, 2015, the Toronto Maple Leafs hired Mike Babcock for $50 million over eight years. He is no longer with the Maple Leafs, but Payments to him continue through next season.

17. Defending Stanley Cup champions are 68-3 when they take a 2-0 lead in a series the following playoff year. The two-time two defending champion Lightning have a 2-0 lead against the Florida Panthers. The Stanley Cup champions who squandered a 2-0 series lead the following year are the 1998 Red Wings, the 2008 Red Wings and the 2018 Washington Capitals.

18. Nikita Kucherov assisted on Orr’s game-winner Thursday night. It was the 21st time he has been involved in a game-winning playoff goal.. His 21 points (7-14–21) rank second among active players, behind Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby. (9-16—25).

19. Things we don’t understand: The Florida Panthers ranked fifth in the NHL in the regular-season with a 24.4% power play percentage. In this year's playofs, the Panthers are in a 0-for-25 power play slump in these playoffs.

20. Craig Patrick turns 76 today. He was general manager of the Pittsburgh Penguins when they won back-to-back Stanley Cup championships in 1991 and 1992. He was also Herb Brooks’ right-hand man when USA won the 1980 Olympic hockey gold medal at Lake Placid. He is now involved in the new 3-on-3 hockey league that is coming together.
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