Matthew Tkachuk: ‘I wouldn’t say’ animosity with Edmonton is the same as when in Calgary

Photo credit:Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Mike Gould
10 days ago
Florida Panthers forward Matthew Tkachuk has been involved in his fair share of battles with the Edmonton Oilers during his career, but his next one will be the biggest yet.
The star winger spoke with NHL.com’s Tom Gulitti in a wide-ranging profile published on Tuesday and touched upon his history against the Oilers from his time as a member of the Calgary Flames.
Asked straight-up whether he hates the Oilers to the same extent now as he did while he was in Calgary, Tkachuk gave a pretty reasonable answer.
“I don’t know. I wouldn’t say that,” Tkachuk said. “But anytime you’re playing any opponent in the Stanley Cup Final, you don’t even have to have a team rivalry or any rivalry with them. Right when the puck drops it’s going to be very intense, like you’ve had that rivalry a few years.
“It’s the Stanley Cup Final, so much on the line, so I’m sure the teams will go after it pretty good early and I’m sure both teams really, really want this.”
Tkachuk, 26, collected 88 points in 80 games with the Panthers during the 2023-24 regular season. He leads the team with 19 points in 17 games through the first three rounds of these playoffs.
Originally drafted by the Flames with the No. 6 overall pick in 2016, Tkachuk forced his way to Florida in 2022 upon the completion of his previous three-year contract in Calgary. The Panthers have reached the Stanley Cup Final in each of Tkachuk’s first two years with the team.
During his time in Calgary, the Flames and Oilers were both frequent playoff teams in the Pacific Division and played some lively games against each other in both the regular season and playoffs. The Oilers defeated the Flames in five games in the second round of the 2022 postseason.
Through 590 career games over eight NHL seasons with Calgary and Florida, Tkachuk has collected 218 goals and 579 points. He’s added 23 goals and 58 points in 64 games over six career playoff appearances.
The Oilers and Panthers will hit the ice for Game 1 of the 2024 Stanley Cup Final at Amerant Bank Arena in Sunrise, FL on Saturday at 6:00 p.m. MT.

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