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The Carolina Hurricanes were so desperate to move out Jussi Jokinen last season that Jim Rutherford eventually agreed with Ray Shero to pay a large portion of his $3 million salary as part of a trade, ($900,000 according to Cap Geek), b...
The Carolina Hurricanes were so desperate to move out Jussi Jokinen last season that Jim Rutherford eventually agreed with Ray Shero to pay a large portion of his $3 million salary as part of a trade, ($900,000 according to Cap Geek), but the Finn showed that he still has plenty of zip in his stick as he scored a hat trick against his former team while leading the Penguins to a 5-2 win on Tuesday night in Pittsburgh. After a somewhat slow first period as well as an even slower start to the second, and while falling behind 2-0, the Canes battled back later in the second period and tied the game up early in the third. But after the score was tied, the wheels fell off for Carolina and Jokinen and the home team took over. The Pens outshot the Canes 12-8 in the first, but the shots were pretty even the rest of the way and ended up 37-34 Pittsburgh, for the game. Cam Ward made several tough stops to keep his team in the game, but Jokinen beat him high blocker side on one shot and high glove side on another, on two goals he seemed upset about afterward and probably wanted to have back. Carolina's special teams took a step back on this night and allowed two powerplay goals on three attempts while going 0-2 on their powerplay. Jokinen scored the game's first goal when a loose puck came to him in the crease. He kicked the puck nicely to his stick and backhanded it in the net at 14:17 into the period. Paul Martin scored his first of the season when he knocked in a rebound off the back boards, just 1:04 into the second. But to their credit, the Canes came roaring back. Eric Staal scored his first of the season as he somehow managed to get a stick on a shot by Justin Faulk while laying on the ice. The assist was Faulk's third of the season. Then at 3:13 into the third period, Nathan Gerbe made a sweet move in front of the net to tie the score. The Canes were battling hard at this point in the game and might have had the edge. But Jokinen would take a nice pass from Evgeni Malkin and gave the Pens the lead for good just two minutes later. After that it was all Penguins as Ward made save after save in one sequence, one of them a spectacular sweeping stick save on a puck that got past him and almost reached the goal line, only to have Tanner Glass put in an open rebound attempt a few seconds later. Then Jokinen closed things out as he skated in over the blueline alone and beat Ward from far out with a beauty of a shot. The Canes will try to regroup before their next game against the Caps in Washington on Thursday night. Game Notes: Kirk Muller mixed and matched the lines later in the game. One change was to put Drayson Bowman on the first line and move down Jiri Tlusty. The exchange seemed to spark things. We will see if Ruutu is ready on Thursday and if Muller changes things up again. The team allowed another goal seemingly because of a bad line change, (this happened also against Detroit). They appeared to do this too many times last season as well and it needs to be addressed. They also allowed a score off of a faceoff, (they might have actually won that one for a brief time). This was a horrible night in the circle for the team as they only won 38% for the game. One Pittsburgh goal was taken off the board in the first period because Pascal Dupuis kicked in the puck. After a video review, the refs corrected themselves and made the proper call. Plus and Minus? Brett Bellemore and Ron Hainsey each finished with a -2. Andrej Sekera and Justin Faulk had solid games and both finished with +2. Faulk had a team high 23:12 of ice time. Sekera was at 22:14 and earned two assists. To listen to post game interviews, check the following link. Canes PR
about 3 hours ago
PITTSBURGH -- Jussi Jokinen once helped the Carolina Hurricanes win some big games. Now, the Finnish forward is quickly becoming a big Canes killer for the Pittsburgh Penguins. Jokinen had a hat trick Tuesday as the Pens took a 5-2 victo...
PITTSBURGH -- Jussi Jokinen once helped the Carolina Hurricanes win some big games. Now, the Finnish forward is quickly becoming a big Canes killer for the Pittsburgh Penguins. Jokinen had a hat trick Tuesday as the Pens took a 5-2 victory over the Hurricanes in the first Metropolitan Division game between the two teams. Jokinen's second goal pushed the Pens ahead 3-2 in the third period after the Canes had tied the score 2-2 on a Nathan Gerbe goal. Jokinen, traded to Pittsburgh for a conditional draft pick in April, had a power-play goal in the first period. Tanner Glass' third-period score pushed the Pens' lead to 4-2, and Jokinen added another power-play score to get the hats flying. Canes captain Eric Staal scored his first goal of the season after the Pens had taken a 2-0 lead in the second period. Staal was battling defenseman Brooks Orpik between the circles and was knocked down, but got the blade of his stick on a Justin Faulk shot to deflect the puck past Pens goalie Marc-Andre Fleury with 6:36 left in the period. Pens defenseman Paul Martin scored barely a minute into the second for a 2-0 lead when Orpik unleashed a hard shot from the left wing that was wide left of the net. The puck caromed directly to Martin at the bottom of the right circle, and his quick backhander beat a lunging Cam Ward. The Canes were more assertive after a second-period power play resulted in good chances for Jordan Staal and Jeff Skinner. Eric Staal scored his goal, and Eric and Jordan Staal each had an opportunity to tie the score late in the period, forcing Fleury into tough saves. Ward had made some sharp saves to keep it a 2-0 game, making a nice poke-check on an attempt by Brandon Sutter. Then, after the Canes made it 2-1, Ward shouldered off a shot by Jokinen, whose power-play goal gave the Pens a 1-0 lead after the opening period. Jokinen scored his first of the season -- and the Pens' first power-play goal -- at 14:17 of the first after the Canes' Jay Harrison was called for tripping. Jokinen made a quick move to the top of the crease, took a pass from Sidney Crosby off his skate and backhanded a shot past Ward. The Pens appeared to take a 2-0 lead a few minutes later as Pascal Dupuis battled Canes defenseman Ron Hainsey in front of the net and the puck trickled through the pads of a fallen Ward. The play was reviewed and the goal disallowed as Dupuis was ruled to have kicked the puck into the net. The Pens continually crowded Ward around the crease and Harrison dropped the gloves after the Pens' Tanner Glass bumped Ward with 3:05 left in the first. Both fired off several haymakers in drawing the fighting majors. The Pens had a 12-8 shooting edge in the first and limited the Canes' scoring chances. Alex Semin had two heavy shots -- his first two on goal this season -- and Faulk ripped a shot from the point, but Fleury did not have much work in the period as the Pens controlled the puck. Jokinen nearly scored 15 seconds into the game, hitting the post from the left circle on a pass from Evgeni Malkin. The Canes came into the game winless in five games at Consol Energy Center. The Pens whipped the Canes 8-3 in the regular-season finale last year at Consol.
about 7 hours ago
PITTSBURGH -- Sidney Crosby is expecting another fast-paced game against the Canes tonight at Consol Energy Center. "It's always that way against them," the Pittsburgh Penguins star said Tuesday. "They're a team that plays with...
PITTSBURGH -- Sidney Crosby is expecting another fast-paced game against the Canes tonight at Consol Energy Center. "It's always that way against them," the Pittsburgh Penguins star said Tuesday. "They're a team that plays with a lot of speed." As for it being a Metropolitan Division game, Crosby smiled. "That will be a little different," he said. The Canes and Pens now have become divisional rivals and each has a divisional win this season. The Pens (2-0-0) topped the New Jersey Devils 3-0 in the season opener and the Canes (1-0-1) edged the Philadelphia Flyers 2-1 on Sunday. "We're in a tough division and all the points you can get against opponents in the division are huge," Canes coach Kirk Muller said. "We need to realize that and understand the importance of these divisional games." Muller called his team's opener, a 3-2 overtime loss to the Detroit Red Wings, a good measuring stick. What about facing the Pens, in the Canes' first road game? Pittsburgh has won 17 of its last 19 regular-season games at home -- both losses coming to the Buffalo Sabres. The Pens are 5-0 against the Canes at Consol. "This is going to be a good test," Muller said, smiling. "They're obviously a good hockey team and they're playing well. They're not giving up much. So it's going to be a test for us and we need to approach it as 'This is going to be a tight game tonight and you're going to have to battle every inch of the way.' And, hey, one goal can be enough to win tonight's hockey game, if both teams play the defensive style they've been playing the first couple of games." Cam Ward will be back in net for the Canes tonight after facing 38 Detroit shots in the opener. The Pens again will have Marc-Andre Fleury in net as the veteran goaltender continues to rebound from a disastrous 2013 playoffs. Fleury consulted with a sports psychologist in the offseason and one change is that he no longer talks to the media on days when he's playing. Whatever, it worked so far as he's 2-0 and has allowed just one goal on 48 shots in beating the Devils and Sabres. Fleury began the season with a shutout sequence of 115:06, the longest in franchise history to start a season. Fleury and the Pens will be shooting for the Pens' first 3-0 start since 1994-1995, when Pittsburgh won its first seven games. "He's playing well but they seem to be playing a little safer -- their D are playing a little more conservative than in the past," Muller said. "They play hard in front. So (with) the combination they're not giving up much, so we're going to have to really work to get pucks to the net and get second and third rebounds." Ward will be the only lineup change for the Canes from the Flyers game. Rookie Elias Lindholm, who left the game in the third period with an upper-body injury, will play tonight, Muller says. The lines and defensive pairings will remain the same for the Canes. Lindholm will be on the fourth line with Brett Sutter and Drayson Bowman. Kevin Westgarth and Mike Komisarek will again be healthy scratches. "No changes," Muller said. "The way the team played the other night, I don't see any reason to change it up." The Pens will be without defenseman Kris Letang, who is coming off a lower-body injury. Letang skated on his own Tuesday. Oddly, two players who earned contracts after professional tryouts each have two goals in the first two games. Radek Dvorak tops the Canes with two, including the game-winner against the Flyers, and Chuck Kobasew has two for the Pens. Crosby and Craig Adams also have a pair of goals. The Pens top line of Crosby, Chris Kunitz and Pascal Dupuis have combined for three goals and five points.
about 14 hours ago
Carolina Hurricanes at Pittsburgh PenguinsTuesday, October 8, 2013 - 7:00 pm EDTCONSOL Energy Center - Pittsburgh, PATV - Fox Sports CarolinasRadio - 99.9 The Fan SB Nation Rival Blog: Pensburgh (twitter @Pensburgh) Hurricanes Record: ...
Carolina Hurricanes at Pittsburgh PenguinsTuesday, October 8, 2013 - 7:00 pm EDTCONSOL Energy Center - Pittsburgh, PATV - Fox Sports CarolinasRadio - 99.9 The Fan SB Nation Rival Blog: Pensburgh (twitter @Pensburgh) Hurricanes Record: 1-0-1 (3 pts.)Penguins Record: 2-0-0 (4 pts.) How befitting that the Carolina Hurricanes were at the park yesterday to witness a team defend a 2-1 lead in the late stages of a game against a surging opponent. National League MVP candidate Andrew McCutchen at the plate at the bottom of the ninth with two outs and the tying run on base certainly made for late-game drama, but (sadly for this Pirates fan) the Cardinals prevailed and the NLDS will have to wait another day. The Canes are in Pittsburgh for the first of a two-game road trip. This will be the first away game of the young season, and it couldn't come against a tougher opponent. The Penguins are early favorites among prognosticators to win the Metropolitan Division and contend for the Stanley Cup. They are undefeated in their first two games and are looking for their third straight win on home ice. The Hurricanes have never won at CONSOL, going back to the 2010-11 season when the arena opened. The Hurricanes are coming off a 2-1 win against the Flyers on Sunday night, and head coach Kirk Muller doesn't intend to mess with a good thing, keeping the lines intact in Monday's practice. Of concern was the status of forward Elias Lindholm, who left during the third period Sunday with an upper body injury and skated in a no-contact jersey as a precaution on Monday. Indications are that Lindholm could play tonight but will remain under evaluation. Tuomo Ruutu also joined the team at yesterday's practice (also in a no-contact jersey) and participated in limited drills and extended conditioning. He remains on injured reserve but is traveling with the team on the road trip and could be available soon. Tim Gleason, who is recovering from a concussion, is also traveling with the team but has not returned to the ice. Cam Ward gets the start in net tonight. Kirk Muller audio from Monday's practice: [link] Expected line-up (Hurricanes web site): Forwards Jiri Tlusty Eric Staal Alexander Semin Nathan Gerbe Jordan Staal Patrick Dwyer Jeff Skinner Riley Nash Radek Dvorak Brett Sutter Elias Lindholm Drayson Bowman Kevin Westgarth Defensemen Andrej Sekera Justin Faulk Jay Harrison Ryan Murphy Brett Bellemore Ron Hainsey Mike Komisarek Goaltenders Cam Ward Anton Khudobin Injuries: Forward Tuomo Ruutu (IR - lower body), defensemen Tim Gleason (IR - concussion) and Joni Pitkanen (LTIR - broken left heel bone) The Penguins last played on Saturday night in a 4-1 home win against the Buffalo Sabres. Goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury answered critics of his 2013 playoff performance by coming within 4:54 minutes of back-to-back shutouts. His 115:06 shutout sequence to begin the season is the longest in franchise history and earned him NHL third star of the week honors. There are a lot of familiar faces on the Penguins roster between the veterans who met in the 2009 Eastern Conference Finals and the three ex-Canes on the roster. Backup netminder Jeff Zatkoff spent time in the off-season skating with several Canes players at Raleigh Center Ice. Sidney Crosby has scored two goals in two games. Evgeni Malkin has not yet found the twine but he has never gone three games into a season without scoring. Expected lines: Chris Kunitz - Sidney Crosby - Pascal DupuisJussi Jokinen - Evgeni Malkin - Beau BennettDustin Jeffrey - Brandon Sutter - Chuck KobasewTanner Glass - Joe Vitale - Craig Adams Brooks Orpik - Paul MartinRob Scuderi - Matt
about 19 hours ago
After starting the season with a pair of home games, the Canes seem ready to get out of town for a couple of games. It could shape up as an important mini-trip. The Canes (1-0-1) topped the Philadelphia Flyers 2-1 Sunday in their first M...
After starting the season with a pair of home games, the Canes seem ready to get out of town for a couple of games. It could shape up as an important mini-trip. The Canes (1-0-1) topped the Philadelphia Flyers 2-1 Sunday in their first Metropolitan Division game, and now face the Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals in two more divisional games. "It's nice to go on the road off some strong games at home," Canes coach Kirk Muller said Monday. "We've been here for a while, so I think the guys are ready to head out and hit Pittsburgh and Washington. Two tough teams but we're just focused on one, and they're not giving up much right now." The Pens ripped the Canes 8-3 in the final game last season. It was Jordan Staal's first game in Pittsburgh since the trade by the Pens to Carolina, and the center -- always popular with Pens fans -- was given a standing ovation early in the game. Staal, with a smile, said he doesn't expect that to happen again. Neither does Muller. "The honeymoon is over," Muller joked. "I'd say it will be a little different feel," Staal said. "Last time it was the last game of the season and we weren't in the position we wanted to be. This time we're heading there to get two points." Cam Ward will be in net for the Pens game and could be the only lineup change. Elias Lindholm, who suffered an upper-body injury in the third period of Sunday's game, was at practice Monday in a yellow, no-contact jersey but could play, Muller said. "We had him in his old Swedish flag to make him feel comfortable," Muller joked of Lindholm's jersey. Forward Tuomo Ruutu also returned to practice Monday, also wearing yellow. Ruutu will travel with the team on the trip. So will defenseman Tim Gleason, although Muller said he continues to be sidelined as he recovers from a concussion. "We'll see how (Ruutu) feels and where he's at tomorrow," Muller said. The Canes spent part of Monday's practice working on the power play. Lindholm was with one unit with Eric Staal, Alex Semin, Jiri Tlusty and Ryan Murphy. A second unit had Jordan Staal, Nathan Gerbe, Jeff Skinner, Justin Faulk and Jay Harrison.
1 day ago
The Carolina Hurricanes earned three out of four points in its season-opening set at home, topping the Flyers, 2-1, to earn win No. 1 for the 2013-14 season. Jay Harrison and Radek Dvorak scored, and Anton Khudobin stopped 17 of 18 shots...
The Carolina Hurricanes earned three out of four points in its season-opening set at home, topping the Flyers, 2-1, to earn win No. 1 for the 2013-14 season. Jay Harrison and Radek Dvorak scored, and Anton Khudobin stopped 17 of 18 shots in his Canes debut. Three Observations 1. Peter Laviolette was ousted as the Flyers coach Monday morning, less than a day after the Canes sent Philadelphia to 0-3 on the season. While being fired three games into a season is unprecedented and pretty nonsensical, Laviolette has been known to burn brightly then fizzle out behind the bench. Laviolette took Philadelphia to the Cup Finals in 2010, but just 123 regular season games later he's out behind the Flyers bench. Things weren't much different in Carolina: Laviolette was ousted Dec. 3, 2008, just 189 games after he hoisted the Stanley Cup on the then-RBC Center ice. 2. Coach Kirk Muller will have some difficult decisions to make once Tim Gleason and Tuomo Ruutu are healthy. Carolina’s weakest forward line has been its top one — Eric Staal, Alexander Semin and Jiri Tlusty have a combined eight shots (none by Semin) and no points through two games — but none of those players will find themselves out of the lineup. Jordan Staal’s line hasn't produced offensively, but has been a big part of stopping the opposition’s attack through two games, while the third and fourth lines have consistently brought energy and seem to be developing great chemistry. On defense, Brett Bellemore and Ryan Murphy have established themselves in the top-six, while Andrej Sekera and Justin Faulk have been a defensive force as the top pairing. That leaves Jay Harrison — who scored Sunday and is a proven tutor of young defensemen — and Ron Hainsey as the current likely candidates for benching upon Gleason’s return. If the decision had to be made today, it’s likely Hainsey who is the odd-man out. 3. Rookie Elias Lindholm showed Sunday why Carolina took him fifth overall this past June. There hasn't been a ton of dazzle to Lindholm’s game thus far, but there's no denying the tempo and energy the with which 18-year-old plays the game. To stay in the lineup — and with the team this year — Lindholm needs to be, first and foremost, defensively responsible. So far he's done that. And while he's been held without a point or even a shot in a little less than 17 minutes of NHL ice time, there have been glimpses of his playmaking ability and smarts on the ice. Is Lindholm the next Daniel Alfredsson or Peter Forsberg? Those are generational players, so probably not. But so far he’s showing, at 18, that he belongs with the best players in the world. Number To Know 50 — shooting percentage for Dvorak through two games. The training camp invitee earned a contract from Carolina and has rewarded the team for its faith in him by scoring in both games. The 36-year-old winger has found chemistry with Jeff Skinner and Riley Nash on Carolina’s third line and has converted half his chances, including scoring the game winner Sunday. Plus Brett Bellemore — The rookie blueliner had a team-high three blocked shots and spent most of the game — along with partner Hainsey — matched up against Philadelphia’s most talented and dangerous line of Claude Giroux, Scott Hartnell and Jakub Voracek. The result was that line registered only four shots the entire night — and only two against the Bellmore-Hainsey combination. Minus Drayson Bowman — On a night when the Canes looked rock solid, Bowman had the one sequence of mistakes that cost them a goal. First, Bowman iced the puck attempting a long outlet pass. That led to a fourth-line matchup in the defensive zone, with Kris Newbury winning the faceoff back to defenseman Luke Schenn and Bowman over-committing in coming out to the point. That allowed Schenn the time and space to make a perfect shot to beat Khudobin and tie the t
1 day ago
The Carolina Hurricanes jumped out to a lead again on Sunday, took their lead into the third period, but this time held onto it as they defeated the Philadelphia Flyers, 2-1 at the PNC Arena on Sunday. The win gave the Hurricanes three ...
The Carolina Hurricanes jumped out to a lead again on Sunday, took their lead into the third period, but this time held onto it as they defeated the Philadelphia Flyers, 2-1 at the PNC Arena on Sunday. The win gave the Hurricanes three out of a possible four points in their opening weekend while the Flyers dropped to 0-3-0 so far in their young season. Jay Harrison started off the scoring for the home team as his shot from the point just barely squeezed through the "five-hole" of Steve Mason at 8:11 into the first period. The Canes dominated the period at times and outshot the Flyers, (who had played the previous night in Montreal), 17-5. Luke Schenn would tie the game just three minutes into the second, but the Canes would score again about five minutes later. Jeff Skinner, who was skating well all night and earned the first star of the game, was forechecking and Schenn's pass went off of his skate right to a wide open Radek Dvorak, who was just outside the slot area. Dvorak made no mistake and put the Canes back up by one, on a goal which would eventually be the game-winner. The goal was the second of the season for the Czech native, a last minute signing by the Canes after he earned a spot on a tryout during training camp. Skinner ended up with two assists for the game, also earning one on the Harrison goal scored earlier. Anton Khudobin, somewhat of a surprise start in net, had a solid game and made the saves when he needed them. When asked if he would alternate goalies game to game going forward, Muller responded that he may start out that way and see how it goes. For now, he it seems he is not committing to either goalie. The Canes will practice at 10 am tomorrow, then fly to Pittsburgh for their game Tuesday night against the Pens. Game Notes: The first line still looks off-kilter. Fortunately, all the other lines are looking good and are continuing to build chemistry. Some mentioned that it might have been one of Skinner's best games as a pro, even though he didn't score a goal. He was forechecking, playing defense, and contributing in other ways. He had a couple of good passes that just missed. He finished with a team high five shots on goal and was awarded the game's first star. The Canes outshot the Flyers 17-5 in the first period, and perhaps more importantly, 7-3 in the third. For the game, they finished with a 34-18 advantage. Justin Faulk played a game high 25:44. Next highest for the Canes was Andrej Sekera with 22:17. Rookie Elias Lindholm left the game for a bit after a hard hit into the boards, but came back to the bench and told the coach he was ready to go back in. He had 7:34 of ice time. The Canes are perfect so far this season on the penalty kill, (5-5). They went 0-4 on the powerplay tonight and had a few good as well as bad moments. Brett Bellemore and Ron Hainsey each had a team high three blocked shots. Jiri Tlusty had a team high five hits. The Canes won 57% of the game's faceoffs.
2 days ago
This time, the Carolina Hurricanes wouldn't let go of the lead. The Canes won their first game of the season Sunday, using goals from Radek Dvorak and Jay Harrison and solid play in net from Anton Khudobin for a 2-1 victory over the...
This time, the Carolina Hurricanes wouldn't let go of the lead. The Canes won their first game of the season Sunday, using goals from Radek Dvorak and Jay Harrison and solid play in net from Anton Khudobin for a 2-1 victory over the winless Philadelphia Flyers. The Canes couldn't hold on to a lead in their season-opener Friday as the Detroit Red Wings rallied from a 2-0 deficit to win 3-2 in overtime. Dvorak gave the Canes a 2-1 lead after the second period, converting a Flyers turnover into a score. Dvorak scored at 8:20 of the second after the Flyers' Luke Schenn, who had goal in the period, attempted to pass from behind the Philadelphia net. Shenn, pressured by the Canes' Jeff Skinner, had his pass nick Skinner's skate, the puck bouncing into the slot as Dvorak pounced for an open shot. Schenn had tied it 1-1 three minutes into the second. After the Flyers won a faceoff in the Canes' zone, Schenn got inside position on Drayson Bowman and walked to rip a top-shelf shot past goalie Anton Khudobin. The Canes put 17 shots on net in the first period and Flyers goalie Steve Mason stopped 16. But one got away from him and it gave the Canes a 1-0 lead. Harrison scored the goal, wristing a shot from the left point after Ryan Murphy caromed the puck off the boards. The puck trickled through the pads of Mason as Dvorak and the Flyers' Braydon Coburn battled for position in front of Mason. Murphy earned the first point of his NHL career and later had the fans roaring after a hit on the Flyers' Sean Couturier along the boards. Skinner also an assist on the Harrison goal. The final shot count was 17-5, Canes, in the opening period as Carolina sharply moved the puck. Mason made several high-quality stops to keep it a 1-0 game, including a shot by Skinner from the slot after Skinner swiped the puck from Vincent Lecavalier. Khudobin, making his first start in net for the Hurricanes, wasn't tested often in the first. But Khudobin did stop a Scott Hartnell shot from the right wing with one second left in the period as the Flyers generated an odd-man rush. Skinner, active in the offensive zone, had four shots in the opening period. The Flyers played Saturday in Montreal and arrived in Raleigh about 2 a.m.
2 days ago
Carolina Hurricanes Vs. Philadelphia Flyers Sunday, October 6, 2013 - 5:00 pm EDTPNC Arena - Raleigh, NCTV - Fox Sports CarolinasRadio - 99.9 The Fan SB Nation Rival Blog: Broad Street Hockey (on twitter @BroadStHockey) The Hurricanes...
Carolina Hurricanes Vs. Philadelphia Flyers Sunday, October 6, 2013 - 5:00 pm EDTPNC Arena - Raleigh, NCTV - Fox Sports CarolinasRadio - 99.9 The Fan SB Nation Rival Blog: Broad Street Hockey (on twitter @BroadStHockey) The Hurricanes kicked off their season Friday night with a 3-2 loss in overtime to the Detroit Red Wings. Bob and Cory have done a fantastic job of breaking that game down already so there's no need to rehash things here other than to say that there were both positives and negatives to take away from that game. Tonight the Canes host the Flyers with a chance to continue to build off of some of the positives from Friday night's game and to take three out of a possible four points off of this early season two game home stand. The Flyers are coming off a 4-1 loss last night against the Montreal Canadiens. Hopefully the Canes can take advantage of the quick back to back for their opponents and get two points. One thing is for certain, the new divisional foe Flyers won't make it easy on the Canes. While tonight is the first divisional game between the Flyers and Canes, it doesn't mean that there won't be some familiar faces. Long time Lightning player Vincent Lecavalier signed with the Flyers after being bought out this summer. Vinny was always a Cane killer and had the lone goal for the Flyers last night with a third period power play tally. Will he be able to keep that up without long time running mate Martin St. Louis on his line? A few items to look for at today's game: New Faces - Friday night saw two new players score their first goals with the Hurricanes. Radek Dvorak with a nice tip on a Skinner crossing pass in the first, and Nathan Gerbe with a power play goal in the second. Will either play be able to get back on the scorecard today? Neither player is expected to be a top point producer, but secondary scoring is always necessary in the NHL to be a winning team and something the Canes have lacked much of the last two years. First Line - The Canes first line of Eric Staal, Alexander Semin, and Jiri Tlusty were held in check pretty well by the Red Wings on Friday night. This isn't to say there weren't bright spots, but the Wings did a good job of limiting that lines effectiveness. Will tonight be more of the same of will the Canes top line be able to assert some dominance. Given that Philly is now a divisional foe it's going to be critical that the Canes top line at the least tilt the ice in favor of the Hurricanes. As of now there are no changes to the lineup from Friday's season opener, but we will keep you updated as information becomes available. No word yet from the Flyers on if they will make any lineup moves after last nights game. There will be no practice this morning before the game. The Canes continue their opening weekend festivities today. All fans in attendance will receive a free magnetic schedule tomorrow night. Activities will be held on the south lawn like opening night. Check out CH.com for a complete breakdown of events.
3 days ago
Newcomers Radek Dvorak and Nathan Gerbe paced Carolina to a 2-0 lead Friday in the Hurricanes’ season opener at PNC Arena, but the Detroit Red Wings rallied for two third-period goals — including the game-tying tally with the...
Newcomers Radek Dvorak and Nathan Gerbe paced Carolina to a 2-0 lead Friday in the Hurricanes’ season opener at PNC Arena, but the Detroit Red Wings rallied for two third-period goals — including the game-tying tally with their netminder pulled — and finished the job with an overtime goal to come away with a 3-2 win over the Canes. Three Observations 1. For a night, Cam Ward was back. Last season, the Hurricanes started off the season winning in spite of their goaltender, who struggled to find his way. Then Ward went down with a knee injury and the wheels completely fell off, with Carolina stumbling to a bottom five finish. Ward made 35 saves Friday night and could hardly be blamed for any of the Red Wings goals in outplayed counterpart Jimmy Howard despite taking the overtime loss. It's just one game, but the Hurricanes — and Ward — can build on his effort. 2. There’s more on Gerbe and Eric Staal later, but one has to wonder why coach Kirk Muller chose to play brothers Jordan and Eric together in the game’s final minute with Patrick Dwyer instead of keeping Gerbe with his two linemates. The Jordan Staal-Gerbe-Dwyer combo worked well all night, but instead of sticking with it Muller swapped out Gerbe for the captain and Detroit wound up scoring the tying goal. That's not meant to pin the goal on Eric Staal, but — as the old adage goes — if it ain't broke, don't fix it. 3. It was a good night for Carolina’s newcomers and youngsters. Dvorak and Gerbe scored, Hainsey and Sekera each logged more than 20 minutes, and rookies Brett Bellemore, Ryan Murphy and Elias Lindholm all looked comfortable. The lineup is not set in stone — Tuomo Ruutu has a home in the top six when he's healthy, and it's unlikely Jeff Skinner will continue to play less than 14 minutes a night — but no one seemed out of place in the opener. Number To Know 0 — shots on goal for Alexander Semin Friday, just the second time since he just joined the Hurricanes that he has not registered one in a game. Semin still had the most impressive shot of the night, a screaming wrister that beat Howard stick side but hit the post. Semin and the top line can and will be better most nights, but the 29-year-old Russian with a new long-term contract still created some quality chances and could have scored. Plus Nathan Gerbe — The NHL's smallest player came up big for the Canes Friday. Gerbe got his first goal with Carolina and finished with a team-high five shots in more than 20 minutes of ice time. Not only did Gerbe get on the board — albeit courtesy a flukey bounce on the power play — but he was a nuisance all night, pestering the Red Wings’ top line with linemates Jordan Staal and Dwyer and contributing it all situations. Minus Eric Staal — We know the plus/minus isn't the end-all, be-all to good play — Justin Faulk’s exceptional play despite being a minus-1 proves that — but the captain was on the ice for all three of Detroit’s goals, wasn't much an offensive threat, took a penalty, and on the whole was a nonfactor. Like Ward’s solid Game 1 performance should be taken with a grain of salt, so too should Staal’s underwhelming opening night. But on a night when Detroit’s captain tied the score with less than a minute left, Staal did not propel his team over the top.
4 days ago