After an utterly wild affair in Brooklyn on Monday night, the Hurricanes and Islanders will do it again in Raleigh on Tuesday. The Hurricanes’ 8-4 win on Monday featured a free pass through the neutral zone, mostly a night off for goaltenders whether they were in the game or not and scoring chances at a similar pace to pond hockey without goalies. The Hurricanes got a hat trick from Jaccob Slavin and 2 goals each from Justin Faulk and Jeff Skinner to collect the win.
Given that the first match up between these teams was another wild 7-4 win for the Hurricanes in January, it seems reasonable to hope for another high-scoring event in Raleigh on Tuesday.
‘What I’m watching’ for the Hurricanes versus the Islanders
1) More of the same?
It seems impossible that these 2 teams could just keep posting 10 or more goals every time they play, but who knows. I would imagine both coaches will spend time with the video and try to make adjustments on the forecheck and retreat through the neutral zone to try to add a layer of resistance. Or maybe the match up just has some oddity that neither team can slow the other down. Either way, I will be watching early to see if another wild game seems to be in store.
2) Lucas Wallmark
I was not so high on his debut in my recap of Monday’s game or in my comments in today’s Daily Cup of Joe. It was not so much that Wallmark played poorly or did anything specifically wrong. Rather, my first read on him in an NHL game is that he is going to have a hard time at transition points with his current mobility/speed. Tuesday I will be watching to see if I get the same impression. Important to note is that Victor Rask makes average-ish speed work because he is so incredibly good positionally and also reading developing plays to get a quick jump, so speed is not an absolute requirement to be successful in the NHL.
3) Eddie Lack
The expectation is that Peters will go back to Eddie Lack for the second half of the back-to-back with travel. I will be watching to see how he looks especially if the game is a wide open affair like Monday.
The puck drops at about 7:07pm at PNC Arena.