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Fantucchio’s Focus: Stars shameful in Game 3, Islanders to play at MetLife

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Good morning, my name is Andrew Fantucchio. It’s Wednesday, May 24, and here’s what I’m focused on around the NHL today.

Islanders to face Rangers at Metlife Stadium:

It is yet to be officially confirmed, but multiple reports have stated the New York Islanders will face the New York Rangers at MetLife Stadium as part of the NHL’s Stadium Series in February of 2024.

Stars shameful in Game 3 Loss:

The Dallas Stars now trail the Vegas Golden Knights three games to none in the Western Conference Final following a 4-0 loss at home in Game 3 of the series on Tuesday night.

But even though the final score was pretty ugly for Dallas, it doesn’t even tell half of the story.

Before the fans at American Airlines Center even settled into their seats, Jonathan Marchessault put Vegas on the board just 1:11 after the opening face-off, but that was only a precursor for everything else that was set to come.

Forty-two seconds later, Jamie Benn was handed a five-minute major and a game misconduct after he delivered a cross-check to Mark Stone.

Benn declined to speak to the media following the game.

On the ensuing powerplay, Ivan Barbashev gave the Knights a 2-0 lead that quickly became 3-0 when Jake Oettinger allowed a third goal to William Carrier.

Oettinger was soon pulled from the game by Stars head coach Peter DeBoer after allowing three goals on just five shots. Meanwhile, Adin Hill pitched a 34-save shutout for Vegas.

Alex Pietrangelo wrapped up the offense midway through the second period, but there was a lot more drama to be had.

Before the second period could close, Max Domi was handed two minor penalties and a misconduct after he and Nicolas Hague exchanged a few words and then a few fists. By this point, fans in attendance became so angry they began to throw items on the ice, forcing the referees to cut the period short.

In total, the Stars had a combined 35 penalty minutes in the game.

Vegas can sweep the series and make a return to the Stanley Cup Final with a win in Game 4 on Thursday.

Panthers look to close out ‘Canes: 

Few people expected the Florida Panthers to make it past the first round of the playoffs, but they now sit one win away from reaching the Stanley Cup Final if they can defeat the Carolina Hurricanes tonight in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Final.

Panthers captain Aleksander Barkov exited Game 3 and did not return, but he could be back for the potential deciding game of the series, according to George Richards at Florida Hockey Now.

Game 4 is set to begin at 8 p.m. EST from FLA Live Arena and can be seen on TNT.

More From National Hockey Now: 

Pittsburgh: Several candidates are emerging in Penguins’ search for new GM

Calgary: Flames name Craig Conroy as new GM

San Jose: Sharks are seeking ‘Competitive Skill’ in 2023 draft