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Verhaeghe: Panthers want to win Cup for Maurice

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Florida Panthers head coach Paul Maurice's impressive resume is missing a Stanley Cup championship, but Carter Verhaeghe hopes to help change that Saturday night.

"If we can win it for anyone, we wanna win it for him," the forward said, according to The Associated Press' Stephen Whyno.

A veteran of 1,848 regular-season games over 26 campaigns, Maurice ranks fourth all time in wins (869) by a bench boss in league history.

He also owns a record of 69-64 in the playoffs and has led Florida to back-to-back appearances in the Stanley Cup Final during his first two seasons in the Sunshine State.

The Panthers fell short last spring, falling to the Vegas Golden Knights in five games. Now, they're one win away from their first championship in franchise history after stuffing the Edmonton Oilers into a 3-0 hole.

Maurice was raring to go while doing his best to stay centered with puck drop mere hours away.

"(I'm) probably not quite as calm as it looks; the feet are flying underneath this table. ... We have to keep this in context, right?" he said, per Sportsnet. "What is it, 11 in the morning? My brain is gonna shift pretty hard here in about four hours. ... But I've been selling 'Enjoy your day' for two years here and probably before that, and I believe it. I've had enough of the other days that aren't good.

"I'm damn well gonna enjoy the morning skate on a day like today. I refuse not to be in a good mood. ... If you can't enjoy this morning, what the hell are you doing? Like, what's the point of this?"

The Panthers know they'll be facing a desperate Oilers team looking to keep its season alive. Connor Brown said Saturday that Edmonton has "held the play" for the bulk of the series despite the deficit, but Verhaeghe shrugged off his opponent's comments.

"We don't focus on what they say," he said, per ESPN's Greg Wyshynski. "They can say whatever they want. We're just focusing on what we have to do."

Game 4 is set for 8 p.m. ET.

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