The Florida Panthers defeated the Hurricanes 4-3 Wednesday to sweep the series and advance to the Stanley Cup Final for the second time in franchise history (swept by Avalanche in 1996).

Matthew Tkachuk scored the go-ahead goal with five seconds left, tying the latest game-winning goal in regulation to clinch a series in Stanley Cup Playoff history.

Improbable Run For The Florida Panthers

It’s been an improbable run for the Panthers as they had the fewest points of any playoff team (92). They’re the third team in the expansion era (1967-68) to reach the Stanley Cup Final as the lowest-ranked team in the playoffs.

The Panthers also became the third team in the NHL’s modern era (since 1943-44) to win three or more series after entering as the lowest-ranked team in the playoffs, joining those same 2017 Predators and 2021 Canadiens.

They have a chance to be the first such team to win four series. Florida had the 17th-most points in the league during the regular season. Matthew Tkachuk’s old team, the Calgary Flames, had one more point than the Panthers and did not make the playoffs.

How The Florida Panthers Almost Missed The Playoffs

On March 27, the Panthers had just a 37% chance to make the playoffs according to FiveThirtyEight. Two days later, the Panthers were in Toronto and entered the game three points back of the Penguins for the 2nd Wild Card.

Coach Paul Maurice yelled at his team during a Panthers successful offside challenge on a Maple Leafs goal. “It was not calculated. I was just honest. It was where I was at. If I could have yelled louder, if I could’ve been (expletive) more profane than I was, I would’ve.

I’m not gifted enough. I needed to channel my father, who’s a gifted cursor. That was all I had. I was honest. That’s how I felt.” The Panthers trailed 2-1 late in the 3rd, scored the game-tying goal with one minute left in regulation and then won in OT on Brandon Montour’s goal.

But the adversity didn’t stop there. The Panthers fell behind 3-1 in the 1st round to the Presidents’ Trophy-winning Boston Bruins, who set the NHL single-season record for wins (65) and points (135).  Crushing the hopes of Pete Sheppard.

They rallied to win the next three games, including Game 7 in OT, to pull off the second-largest upset in terms of points differential in Stanley Cup Playoffs history (43) and the largest in a best-of-7 series.  Then they went on to beat the Toronto Maple Leafs and now the Carolina Panthers.

I think the term “Team of Destiny” is so overrated in sports society.  However, there is no question it certainly applies here.  It doesn’t matter who they play in the Stanley Cup Finals, it’s looking like Las Vegas, I will be picking the Panthers to win it.

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Insane Brawl At Fort Myers Intersection Caught On Camera

The topic of road rage comes up on my show at least once a month. Road rage incidents have always happened but over the past couple of months many videos of people in action have surfaced. There was just a situation that happened in Tampa. A couple got out of their car and began attacking a Brandon woman’s vehicle at that Florida intersection. Not sure what led to the fight, but it’s being reported as a road rage incident.

Have you ever been in a road rage situation? I have been in one and had to pull over just let the angry man go ahead of me. What got the man upset was me getting over quickly before I missed my exit. I had my blinker on and everything.

He was very angry  and kept yelling out of the window that I cut him off. After we got off on the exit, he proceeded to follow me and kept getting on my bumper. I then decided to pull over and I got my phone out. My phone was out to call the police and to record.

If you are a person with road rage, please remember that it’s never that serious.

Don’t let someone in traffic get you to the point where you do something that will land you in jail.

According to a study that was published in Human Psychopharmacology: Clinical & Experiment, drivers who smelt the essential oil peppermint displayed fewer aggressive driving behaviors. You may not have peppermint oil, but you can get the tree air freshener. The tree air freshener smells like peppermint.

I wish the woman in the video below would have smelled peppermint before getting out of her car and attacking people. This incident happened in the neighborhood I use to live in. I recognize the street sign and Winkler road in Fort Myers is the Florida intersection where the fight took place.