The story of the 2021 Stanley Cup semifinals in 73 fun stats

Sportsnet's Sean Reynolds breaks down the incredible run by the Montreal Canadiens to the Stanley Cup Finals, how they did it and how often a lower seed has made the final.

The Stanley Cup semifinals delivered two thrilling series, intense commitment to defence and set the stage for either a repeat champion or one of the greatest Cinderella tales in sport.

We recount the battles of hockey’s Final Four through 73 statistics.

Break out your abacus.

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100 years apart for the inaugural seasons of the Vegas Golden Knights (2017-18) and Montreal Canadiens (1917-18), the largest gap ever between playoff opponents

29 years since every member of the NHL’s final four defeated a higher seed to survive Round 2

3 NHL franchises, including the Vegas Golden Knights, to reach the final four three times in their first four years of existence (New York Rangers and St. Louis Blues are the others)

5 times in the past seven years that the Tampa Bay Lightning reached Round 3

18 regular-season place of the Montreal Canadiens

$525 bet one would need to make on massive semifinals favourite Golden Knights before Game 1 versus underdog Montreal to win just $100

460 days since a Canadian team travelled across the border to face a U.S. opponent, a streak broken when the Habs visited Las Vegas for Game 1

4-4–8 stat line, entering Game 1, of both Vegas’s Max Pacioretty and Montreal’s Nick Suzuki, who were traded for each other in a 2018 blockbuster

5-3 margin by which Suzuki outscored Pacioretty in their series

3 game-winning goals in by Ryan Pulock, busting Denis Potvin’s 1981 record for most in a single post-season by an Islanders defenceman

0 rush chances for the Lightning in Game 1’s loss to the Islanders

447:08 time, in minutes and seconds, of Montreal’s non-trailing streak, ended by Vegas in Game 1

43 goals at all levels (NCAA, world juniors, AHL, NHL) scored by Montreal rookie Cole Caufield, J.J. Watt’s favourite player, in 2020-21

5 consecutive games, through Game 3, with a point for Caufield, who began the post-season as a healthy scratch

7 Tampa skaters on the ice when Ondrej Palat scored the go-ahead goal in Game 2:

13-0 Lightning’s record following a playoff loss, the longest such run in NHL history

4 consecutive series-clinching shutouts for Andrei Vasilevskiy

7.5 weight in pounds and ounces of Carson Elizabeth Coleman, born roughly five hours after dad Blake played Game 1; a Lightning-arranged police escort zipped Blake to the hospital in five minutes after the buzzer, saving a 30-minute drive

122 career playoff points by Nikita Kucherov

36 more playoff points by Kucherov than anyone else since he made his playoff debut in 2014 (Sidney Crosby is second with 86)

22:42 ice time logged by Mikhail Sergachev in a Game 1 loss, after which he hopped out of his car to make this fan’s day:

46 degrees Celsius (or 115°F), temperature in Las Vegas at puck drop for Game 2

8 consecutive games with a point for Tyler Toffoli, through Game 2

3 consecutive series in which Montreal has faced an opponent missing a top centreman for the bulk of the games (John Tavares, Mark Scheifele, Chandler Stephenson)

90 percentage of readers who are questioning if Stephenson is considered a “top centreman”

9 consecutive games with a goal, through Game 6, for Brayden Point, the second-best playoff goal streak in NHL history

24 NHL franchises that have lost at least one playoff game to the Montreal Canadiens

27 times special guest Usher cranked the siren to hype Golden Knights fans before Game 2:

45 points by Golden Knights defencemen, tops among all playoff teams

7 Golden Knights defencemen with at least one playoff goal, tying an NHL record

.334 batting average, in 1986, by Montreal Expos Hall of Famer Tim Raines, cheering on the Habs in Vegas for Game 2:

3,500 Bell Centre attendance in games 3, 4 and 6 — up from 2,500 in Round 2

10,000 number of fans Canadiens defenceman Erik Gustafsson says “it feels like” during these home games

2/2 bloodshot eyes belonging to Jeff Petry

341 blocked shots by the Golden Knights, more than any other playoff team

779 hits by the Islanders, more than any other playoff team

$130.4 million box office rake of 1984’s The Karate Kid, a film that cost only $8 million to produce and created a movie star out of Islanders fan Ralph Macchio

90 playoff wins by Marc-Andre Fleury, moving two shy of Grant Fuhr (92) for third most all-time

4-0 Lightning’s all-time record in playoff series versus the Islanders

11-0 Montreal’s playoff record when scoring at least two goals

24 consecutive post-season games won by Montreal when scoring three or more goals, a streak dating back to May 6, 2014

9 of 12 all-time Vegas-Montreal games won by the Canadiens

11-2 Canadiens’ playoff record when scoring first

11 seasons Luke Richardson spent as an NHL assistant or AHL head coach before getting his first win as an NHL bench boss — in Game 3, as an emergency substitute for Dominique Ducharme, who tested positive for COVID-19

39-17 Game 3 shots, in favour of the Golden Knights, when Marc-Andre Fleury flubbed a dump-in with 1:55 remaining in regulation and paved the way for Montreal’s dramatic comeback:

12 consecutive games without a goal for Josh Anderson before Fleury’s gift

0 goals allowed in the first period of the first seven home games by Carey Price, a steak ended by Reilly Smith’s strike in Game 6

3,051 kilometres from the road-hockey streets of Grandview, Man., to the ice of Nassau Coliseum on Long Island, the only two places Game 4 hero Ryan Pulock played goalie:

33 games Matt Martin had gone without a goal before roofing Game 4’s winner for the Isles

1 general manager in history to win back-to-back Jim Gregory General Manager of the Year Awards — Lou Lamoriello

31 consecutive penalty kills for Montreal

13 consecutive games for Montreal without a power-play goal allowed, a new NHL post-season record

+1 Montreal’s goal differential on the penalty kill

6-8 stitches necessary to mend the gash on Corey Perry’s face by Jonathan Marchessault’s uncalled high stick in Game 3; Perry nose was repaired just in time to celebrate Montreal’s OT victory

44 days between victories for Vegas’s Game 4 starter, Robin Lehner

4 hours before puck drop Lehner arrived at Bell Centre, half of which he says he spent “watching you guys talk s— about me on Twitter to get me motivated”

10 pounds, weight (approximate) of Vegas head coach Peter DeBoer’s cojones, for switching out Fleury (9-6, 1.97, .921) after Game 3’s loss… and then going back to Fleury after Robin Lehner’s stellar showing in Game 4… only to go back to Lehner

$12 million cap hit of the Golden Knights’ goalie tandem

18-0 high-danger chances, in favour of Game 4 loser Montreal, through 60 minutes; Vegas’s only high-danger attempts came in overtime, by Quebec-born hero Nicolas Roy

45 seconds into Game 5 that Steven Stamkos needed to score the winner, his first of the series, pass Martin St. Louis for third all-time in club playoff scoring, and quiet questions that the Lightning captain was underdelivering or too injured to be effective

19 of 19 playoff games in which the Islanders were the betting underdogs

19 consecutive games in which the Islanders finished Period 1 without a lead

7 road wins for Carey Price, leaping him over Ken Dryden and Patrick Roy for a new Canadiens record

5 total goals scored by Golden Knights forwards in the semifinals

$1,000,000 “value” of the phoney bill embedded in the T-Mobile Arena ice prior to Game 5 puck drop:

2 nasty and unpenalized cross-checks delivered by Scott Mayfield to Tampa Bay stars Stamkos and Kucherov prior to scoring Game 6’s tying goal and helping deliver one last victory at Nassau Coliseum

2,167,916 combined populations of Tampa and Montreal — and the estimated number of people who recently learned what Chris Lee does for a living

$30 price of a large baked clam pizza — chopped littleneck clams topped with areganato, breadcrumbs and fresh oregano — from Islanders fan favourite Borrelli’s Restaurant, part of Nassau County executive Laura Curran’s series bet with Tampa Bay mayor Jane Castor

3 nights Montreal’s Phillip Danault has capped off a series victory with a press conference pizza party

1 “Eastern Conference” team to win the Clarence S. Campbell Bowl, awarded to the Western Conference champions

0 Canadiens who touched the trophy, named for the commissioner who touched off the Richard Riot — on the 37th anniversary of Campbell’s death no less

15; 60 arrests made and tickets handed out by Montreal police in wake of the Habs’ series-clinching overtime victory

21 blocked shots by Tampa Bay in their lockdown 1-0 Game 7 win

Statistics pilfered from, helpful Twitter users, CapFriendly, ESPN, Natural Stat Trick, Elias, Sportsnet Stats, Sportlogiq, and the occasional flat-out guess.

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