Red and Black Hockey
by David Lee on 02/09/11 at 02:59 AM ET
Carolina’s rookie Jeff Skinner scored two goals against the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday night in a 3-2 overtime loss. It’s the second time this season that Skinner has struck twice against the Devils, and if he had his drothers, he’d play against the Devils every single night. Twice he’s played against them, and twice he’s scored two goals.
Eric Staal has played 26 regular season games against the Devils and he has only scored four times against them. Skinner needed only two games to reach that mark.
He’ll only get to see them two more times this season including once next Wednesday at the Rock.
While Carolina emerged with one standings point to start their five game road trip, this is a disappointment. This was a game that the Hurricanes wanted to and should have won. They were hoping for six points on this trip, and that was assuming that two would be taken on Tuesday.
I’m assuming a regulation loss in Philadelphia on Thursday. Hopefully they can get a point in Tampa on Saturday. This means that they’ll have to win at Atlanta on Sunday and at New Jersey on Wednesday. That’s not much room at all for error.
Meanwhile, the Sabres won in Tampa to gain a point against the Hurricanes. They are now four points behind Carolina with two games in hand. Their next two games are against the Panthers and the Islanders. I’d bet that the Sabres get at least three points out of those, so Carolina really can’t afford to give points away.
With Skinner’s two goals (both on the power play), he has 20 for the season. Bobby Holik scored 21 goals his rookie season for the Whale in 1990-91. Some guy named Ron Francis scored 25 in his rookie season in 1981-82 for the Whale. Skinner will surpass both of those marks.
Although Carolina lost the game, they can be happy that they converted two of three power play chances. They can be happy that for the second time in the last four games, they gave their opponent ZERO power play opportunities. The only penalty they committed Tuesday was a fighting major. They can be happy that they haven’t given up a power play goal since January 24—six games ago.
Now they’ll have to hope to steal a point (or two) against the Flyers on Thursday.
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About Red and Black Hockey
David Lee is a restaurant manager with an unused degree in political science. He can be found at Carolina Hurricanes games, Scrabble tournaments and indie-rock shows. Sometimes, all in the same day.