Tim Thomas is looking to become the first goalie in NHL history to record three Game 7 shutouts.The Washington Capitals and Boston Bruins will play the 141st Game 7 in the history of the NHL playoffs Wednesday, with two more Game 7s on tap for Thursday (Ottawa Senators at New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils at Florida Panthers).
The team trailing 3-2 after five games has gone on to win the series 67 times (or 47.9 percent of the time). The Bruins, Rangers and Devils will try and add to that percentage this year.
Speaking of the Bruins, they look to continue their Game 7 success against the Capitals. Boston was won its last three Game 7s. The Bruins 12 Game-7 wins are tied for the third most in NHL history (the Montreal Canadiens and Detroit Red Wings each have 13).
If Tim Thomas can hold the Capitals off the scoreboard, he will become the first goalie in NHL history to record three Game 7 shutouts. Only two other goalies have registered two such shutouts (Patrick Roy and Curtis Joseph). Thomas shut out the Tampa Bay Lightning and Vancouver Canucks in Game 7s last season.
Washington has been less than stellar in these situations, posting a 2-7 record. Of the 22 all-time NHL franchises with at least five Game 7 appearances, only the Buffalo Sabres (1-6) and Phoenix Coyotes (0-5) are worse.
Game 7 between the Rangers and Senators is the seventh Game 7 between a 1-seed and an 8-seed under the current playoff format (since 1994). In the previous six, the 8-seed has won four times.
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The Rangers have not won a Game 7 since the 1994 Stanley Cup Final.
The Rangers have not won a Game 7 since the 1994 Stanley Cup Final win against the Canucks. Meanwhile the Senators are 0-4 all-time in Game 7s.
The Devils are playing in a Game 7 for the first time since 2009 and the 14th time overall. It’s the first time they’ve played on the road in Game 7 since 2003, when they won at Ottawa en route to winning the Stanley Cup.
Florida is playing in a Game 7 for just the second time and first since 1996. That season, they beat the Pittsburgh Penguins (that year was also the last time the Panthers won a playoff series).
Overall Game 7 Notes
• 33 times Game 7 has gone into OT and the HOME team has won 17 times. The ROAD team has won 11 of the last 16 Game 7s that have gone into OT.
• Of the 33 OT games in Game 7, seven have been decided in double OT, one in triple OT and one in a four-OT game.
• There have been 25 Game 7 shutouts, 18 have been won by the HOME team.
• Home teams are 85-55 all-time in Game 7s.
• The oldest player to score a Game 7 goal? Boston’s Mark Recchi, who scored a goal last season against Montreal at age 43.
• The team scoring the first goal in Game 7 has won 102 of the 140 games (72.9 percent), including 71 of the last 90 (79.0).