Those with short memories will wake up on Tuesday morning remembering a fun win that saw the Canes notch four goals courtesy of a couple pretty hockey plays from the team’s stars.
While that may be the ending, it is not the full story of the Canes 4-2 win over the Nashville Predators on Monday night.
The first two periods were more like a slog through the mud. In the first period, the Canes mustered only seven shots on net and by my count two decent not great scoring chances. The second period was mostly the same with limited shots on goal and not much for real scoring chances.
But then a single good play by Andrei Svechnikov, a laser labeled for the twine from the top of the face-off circle on the power play, staked the Canes to a 1-0 lead late in the second period.
As I said on Twitter:
And there is difference between old @Canes and new Canes…
Game has been largely 'meh' or worse, but this team has high-end players. Svechnikov with bit of help from Aho makes couple big plays such that scoreboard looks different than overall quality of play.
— Canes and Coffee (@CanesandCoffee) January 19, 2021
The Hurricanes gave the goal back only 46 seconds later when Brady Skjei seemed to lose track of the fact that he and Brett Pesce had switched sides. When he drifted to his usual left side, there was no one behind him when a long pass sprung the Predators for a breakaway goal. But courtesy of strong netminding by James Reimer and a single great shot by Svechnikov, the Hurricanes were lucky to emerge from two periods of hockey with a 1-1 tie.
The third period would be the team’s best. Vincent Trocheck sniped a shot up under the cross bar from between the face-off circles to claim a 2-1 lead. From that point, the game opened up a bit with Nashville pressing for a goal and the more free flowing style of play with pace benefited the Hurricanes. Suddenly, the Canes had an offense again and were generating chances off the rush. Sure enough, the next goal would be a pretty play. Jake Gardiner made a heady pass to spring a 2-on-1 rush. Svechnikov held the puck long enough to keep the goalie needing to defend against a shot and then fed Aho who finished into a half-empty net. The game would tighten up late with a Predators goal, but a Nino Niederreiter empty-netter would seal a 4-2 Canes win.
The game had a couple very different chapters. The Canes effort level was fine through two periods, but the team looked anemic offensively. But the Cane high-end talent made the most of a limited number of chances with clutch finishing.
Player and other notes from the Hurricanes 4-2 win over the Predators
1) James Reimer
After a long layoff and with no preseason games to get ready, Reimer was solid in net. His team was the lesser team through two periods, but Reimer kept the Canes in it such that a late surge was enough.
2) Andrei Svechnikov
After literally a decade of needing to grind out a couple ugly goals to win, the Hurricanes are finally blessed with high-end offensive players who can convert a couple good chances into enough goals to win a hockey game. Against a good Predators defense, Monday was not a quantity day offensively for Svechnikov, but he was incredibly efficient making two skilled plays that directly resulted in goals.
3) Depth scoring emerging?
The Canes offense has been choppy through three games, but notable is the fact that a few players with the potential to make the Hurricanes much deeper scoring-wise are off to good starts. Counting his empty-netter on Monday, Nino Niederreiter has scored twice. And Vincent Trocheck now has two goals and an empty-net assist has three points already. Ryan Dzingel has also netted a goal. Each member of the trio has 25-30 goal potential. If one of two of them reach that total, the Hurricanes will have good pieces for secondary scoring behind the scoring leaders.
Next up is a quick turnaround for the second game of the set against the Predators on Tuesday at 8pm again.
I don’t think the first two periods were as bad effort-wise as you suggest. It was much better than the second Detroit game where the Canes were beaten to virtually every puck. The Canes still struggled early trying to make fancy plays, Necas and Teravainen stood out to me. The other issue are the defensive breakdowns that are becoming commonplace.
The Canes did keep grinding until the Preds started making mistakes, and the Canes were able to capitalize and bury the puck. For the last four periods Andre Svechnikov has been the most dominant player I’ve seen wear the Canes uniform in a long time. It’s not just the points, but the forcheck and physical play. Impressive. He may be the leagues next superstar if he keeps this up.
As to other individual players, it was nice to see Reimer start the season strong. He kept the Canes in the game early when the mistakes kept coming. Niederriter had another good game being aggressive and playing physical. Hope he can keep this up. Trocheck has been solid and opportunistic. Fleury had a nice bounceback game after a tough one on Saturday. Finally, Warren Foegele played the way he should play, strong and aggressive. Bad penalty, but good game overall.
On the other hand…Dougie Hamilton…woof. Three terrible pinches where he had no chance to get the puck and allowed 2 on 1s. Thankfully Hamilton plays with Jaccob Slavin, the 2 on 1 eraser. Hamilton looks like he’s lost his mojo a bit. I’ve been easy on Brady Skjei, but he wasn’t good last night. As said above he drifted to the wrong side for no good reason allowing a breakaway goal by Snidely Wiplash. Later he had the screw up hat trick by giving away the puck in the neutral zone, getting walked, and taking a penalty. Skjei seems to crater when things don’t go well. Needs mental toughness.
Finally, how bad is the television broadcast? Maniscalco can’t get the Canes players right much less the other team, and Tripp is too busy plugging his podcast, Taco Bell, or someone’s kids instead of paying attention to the game. It took Tripp and the broadcast team until the third period to figure out Teravainen wasn’t playing. He didn’t play anything but PP after the first period. I know they are all good people, but this is the worst professional broadcast I have ever seen.
Greetings, fellow Caniacs!
Quick off-topic question, how do you watch the games (it looks like the only options are Spectrum or AT&T subscriptions). Spectrum has a Select package for $45/mo that includes Fox Sports South, but I’m not sure if that also includes FS Carolinas.
If the only way to watch Canes games is via an $80/mo subscription, that’s it for me watching this season, sadly.
I only saw the first game by lucky coincidence, happened to be doing a rare bit of traveling and my South Carolina hotel had Spectrum.
On that topic, you get what you pay for, even more so in the booth than on the ice. Letting Forslund go was a critical fail for my Canes commitment. He was the heart of the Canes media and formed one of the best broadcasting duos in the league with Trip. Not having that quality on TV and not having the chance to see games in person just kills it for me.
So I’ll be only an infrequent guest this season, keeping half an eye on the Canes. Hopefully new TV options will come up and/or team will pull off miracles, but I’ve punted to 2021/2022 in my mind regardless of the outcome.
Ok, enough negativity, that’s not the point of this community, and you guys are as awesome as ever, I am not encouraging you to do as I am doing!
I’m also worried about the whole league. The collective 2020/2021 losses may pile up to more than 4 billion dollars and only 5 teams in the league are profitable (and not even extremely so).
TV deals are dropping like flies and players are essentially standing pat demanding their money. Something has to change or we’ll likely see a 20 to 24-team league in a year or two.
I have no sympathy for the billionaire team owners, but these losses will dent even their mighty bank vaults.
Svech is a superstar in the making, that dominance and that game changing ability we haven’t seen for the longest time. A bit like Erik Cole with a platinum upgrade.
Brady does not impress me at all, bad trade.
Jesper signing would make sense with Staal gone, but the team just has too many sluggers out there. I’d rather have signed Athenasiu for a scoring punch, a kid that got hung out to dry on a couple of teams and needed a prove it on the cheap deal, he’s doing great with the Kings.
I hope Roddie truly starts loding up on a checking line, once Staal is back in action, tryig to get Trocheck going. Necas seems to be a bit out of synch or rusty. He’s got the speed but his aim and moves seem just that bit off, but if he can figure it out he can get right back into a very dangerous forward category.
Well, go Canes! If I can get a $45/mo options to watch them I’ll keep up, but I still cheer them on!
Those are the options, unless you do one of the bootleg streaming options or until Sinclair debuts it’s RSN app (slated for the “spring”).
Many people have cut the cord. The canes are in the entertainment business. The brilliant marketing folks either at the NHL level or canes level need to be fired. What a great way to build your business by not letting the fans watch your product. How stupid can you be. The 80/month AT&T option is ridiculous. I am not switching back to expensive cable. So I am not watching games this season. I am debating continuing as a STH when they open things up again (safely). It is unbelievable to me they could be so stupid. I am not going to be a fan if I cannot watch the games. I refuse to sign up for that AT&T plan out of principal. They pissed off a fan. A good way to go bankrupt.
It’s an NHL format, so I wouldn’t blame the Canes. All the local TV deals are exclusive in their markets. I’m sure the Canes are none too happy. I broke down and paid for the ATT streaming service. I’m essentially paying an additional $15 a month to get hockey.
Yes, I agree with you. I felt it was probably at the NHL level where they negotiated the TV deals. Agreed, not the Canes. I bet they are as hacked off as I am. Really bad decision to cut off the fans that support you. Just a massive marketing mistake in my mind. It is more out anger and the NHLs arrogance towards the fans that they feel they can push us to cable or a high cost streaming service. It just really made me mad and I decided not to spend the extra dollars to get AT&T. I am an avid fan but there are limits. Maybe in time I will cool off. STH since 2006 but the NHL hacked me off with this. I can live without them.
I am also without the broadcasts (DishNTW), soooo I found a bar that has it…EXCEPT they’re closed on Monday, so missed last night!
I questioned the contracts of Trocheck, Skjei and – everyone’s favorite – Gardinerpreseason. I am still not sure about Skjei but Trocheck is showing his mettle and Gardiner is playing his best hockey in years – well worth his salary when he was woefully not worth it last season.
Last nght has to be one of Reimer’s best games as a Cane, and I love the way Svech is taking over play.
But Geekie looks a bit lost.
WIth all the players on covid protocol, I do wonder when the next game will take place – I think DAL is taking something like 2 weeks off.
Gardiner is moving better than I’ve seen him in a Canes jersey. Can he keep it up? Will his back hold up? Time will tell, but he’s played better than Skjei and Hamilton so far.