Throughout the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Florida Panthers goaltender Anthony Stolarz will provide fans with an inside look on the team’s run with his new “Stolie’s Standpoint” series.

This second entry comes after a highlight-reel save from Sergei Bobrovsky and a clutch goal in overtime from Carter Verhaeghe lifted the Panthers to 3-2 win over the cross-state rival Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference First Round on Tuesday night.

What a save!

Honestly, I’m not surprised.

I’ve seen Bobby make numerous saves like that throughout the year and even during practice. It’s just all about his compete and not giving up on a play. His instincts just to know where he was in the net and to be able to dive back, it was just a hell of a save.

It really changed the tide of the game because it would’ve given them a 3-2 lead.

As a goaltender, you just have to appreciate a save like that. Those are the saves you just dream of making. To be able to witness it live and hear the energy of the crowd and the way the boys fed off that energy the rest of the game, it was just a huge moment in the game.

That’s a goalie’s way of changing momentum. Other guys can score or make big hits. As a goalie, all you’ve got is making a save like that. He went out there and gave us a chance to win and kept us in the game when they were pressing. That’s all you can ask of your goalie.

When Bob’s in the zone like that, I kind of step away. He’s pretty locked in and keeps to himself. Over time you learn about your goalie partner and start to understand what they like. He likes to do his thing. During TV timeouts when he skates around the neutral zone, I just like to give him a little love, something like, ‘Nice save, Bobby!’ and things like that.

That’s what makes Bob so special, his ability to make saves like that.

My heart was racing when we got into overtime. It was my first time experiencing that in the playoffs. Luckily, we ended it pretty quick. It wasn’t a marathon. Everyone was super happy and jumping around on the bench, and to share that with the guys was something special.

I’ve also got to give a shoutout to the fans because the building was outstanding in Games 1 and 2. When Bobby made that save, it was probably the loudest I’ve ever heard it. To hear the “Bob-by!” chants, that’s something we appreciate. The crowd is going crazy after every goal and we love hearing all of the cheers. It gets us going on the bench. We feed off that.

When you get back into the locker room after a big win like that, it’s exciting. When you take care of business on home ice and have that kind of energy in a game, everyone’s jacked up. You know that it’s a long series, but you also want to make sure you enjoy that moment. It’s special and it’s something we worked hard for, but at the end of the day it’s on to Game 3.

We’re up 2-0 in the series and we’re going back to their building, so we know they’re going to have some moments and some momentum. But we don’t’ want to change anything. We just want to play our game and weather the storm. If we do that, we know that we’ll be fine.

Looking ahead, we’ve got a quick flight to Tampa this afternoon and then we’ll probably have a nice team meal together. It’s always great to be on the road and to be around the guys. We’ll all just hang out, probably watch some other playoff games and relax for a bit.

We’ve got another big game tomorrow.

Thanks for reading,

Anthony Stolarz

*As told to’s Jameson Olive

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