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Panthers stun Bruins in Game 7 OT, set up series with Maple Leafs

Steve Babineau / National Hockey League / Getty

The Florida Panthers pulled off the upset.

Carter Verhaeghe was the hero for the Panthers in Game 7, as he bested Jeremy Swayman in overtime to eliminate the Presidents' Trophy-winning Boston Bruins.

Florida's Brandon Montour scored with one minute remaining in regulation to extend the contest.

"It really is the biggest upset in NHL history to every single other person other than the guys in that room," Panthers star Matthew Tkachuk told Sportsnet.

“They're the best team I’ve ever played against in my career," Tkachuk said, according to team reporter Jameson Olive. "The fact that we beat them is crazy."

Boston set numerous NHL records during the regular season, including new highs for wins and points. Sergei Bobrovsky started in net for the Panthers in Game 7 and, coincidentally, also defeated the last Presidents' Trophy winners to lose in the first round - the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2019.

The 43-point difference between the two teams makes Florida's victory the largest upset in Stanley Cup Playoffs history in a best-of-seven series.

"The words that come to mind right now are disappointment and confusion," Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery said postgame, according to ESPN's Greg Wyshynski.

On the other side, Panthers bench boss Paul Maurice moved to 4-0 in his career in Game 7s. Maurice joins Scotty Bowman as the only coaches to have eliminated a Presidents' Trophy-winning team from both conferences. Maurice first did so in the West in 2018 when his Winnipeg Jets knocked out the Nashville Predators.

Florida's win sets up a clash against the Toronto Maple Leafs in the next round beginning Tuesday night.

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