Florida Panthers coach Paul Morris said Florida Panthers forward Matthew Tkachuk missed Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final against the Vegas Golden Knights because he fractured his sternum. Here’s what you need to know:
Morris told reporters before Game 5 that he knew whether Tkachuk was playing or not, but would not publicly share the decision.
The 25-year-old winger was limited to 16:40 of ice time in Saturday’s Game 4 loss.
The Golden Knights won Game 5 9-3 over the Panthers to capture the Stanley Cup.
Tkachuk leads Florida with 11 goals and 13 assists in the postseason, accounting for four game winners, three of which came in overtime.
When asked after Saturday’s Game 4 availability for Game 5, Tkachuk said, “That’s a tough question. I really don’t want to talk about that right now… I don’t know what’s going to come of this.”
The Panthers are looking to become the second team in NHL history to overcome a 3-1 deficit in a best-of-seven Stanley Cup Finals series. Earlier in the season, Florida rallied from a 3-1 hole to knock out the President’s Trophy-winning Bruins in the first round.
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Morris praised Tkachuk’s ability to come back in the third game and score the big equalizer. But in Game 4, he “didn’t dress himself up for the game.
“Total coffee junkie. Tv ninja. Unapologetic problem solver. Beer expert.”