Hello, Caniacs. After a one week hiatus due to my trip to see the Canes in Philadelphia, I am back with the week in review. We have a couple games to talk about here, so let’s get to it.
Canes end road trip on sour note: The Canes wrapped up a 1-3-2 six-game season-opening road trip with a 4-2 loss the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday night. The Canes started the game horrifically, with the blown coverages and defensive zone breakdowns that plagued the team throughout the trip coming fast and furious in the first period for a 3-0 Red Wings lead that could have been more if not for some sharp saves by Cam Ward. The team did settle in and push back, outscoring the Wings 2-1 the rest of the game, and were thwarted by several nice saves by Red Wings starter Petr Mrazek, but it was an all too familiar case for Canes fans of the team being done in by a poor start. While the 1-3-2 record on the trip is certainly not ideal for the Canes, I think there were plenty of positives to take, namely the offense, special teams, and new players fitting in. The Canes’ however, were done in by a combination of poor defense and goaltending that will need to be fixed. Matt wrote more about the Detroit game specifically here, and I wrote about the road trip as a whole for Technician here.
Canes win home opener for first time since 2008– For the first time in eight years, the Hurricanes were able to open their home slate with a victory, beating the New York Rangers 3-2. The biggest takeaways from this for me are Jeff Skinner returning to the lineup after a one game absence and carrying the offense, tying the game after a shaky start for the Canes and adding a goal an assist in the second, including a slap shot on the power play at the buzzer of the second period that was deflected in by Bryan Bickell for his first as a Hurricane. This is big for the Canes, as Skinner, a notoriously slow starter, finished October with four goals and nine points in six games. If 53 can keep this up, it will definitely be a good thing for Carolina. In addition, Justin Faulk, after a rough road trip in his own zone, played his best game of the season defensively, breaking up play after play in his own zone. Perhaps the biggest strong point was Cam Ward, who made several good saves to win the game for the Canes. If those three can continue to play like they did Friday, it could spark a nice run for the team. Matt recapped the Rangers game here, and my colleague David Kehrli and I did the same for Technician here.
Positive momentum from Friday lost on Sunday- Unfortunately, the positive momentum from the fun home opener win did not carry over to Sunday. The Hurricanes made a couple mistakes that turned a 3-2 lead into a 4-3 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers in home game #2 dropping the Canes record for the week to 1-2-0.
That’s all for this week, join me again next Sunday as we’ll have another week’s slate of games to discuss.