Red and Black Hockey
Entries with the tag: michael leighton
On Saturday, the Hurricanes sent Michael Leighton to the River Rats. The 28-year old backup was placed on and cleared waivers this week. Because he is on a one-way contract, this assignment does not save the Hurricanes any money, nor does it change the salary cap hit.
Leighton has worked hard to get a break in the NHL, but the honest truth is that he’s not an NHL goalie. And he might never be. He hasn’t learned to utilize his size and he gets out of position too much. Also, he isn’t a strong enough skater to recover when he finds himself out of position. All of that aside, he wasn’t getting enough playing time to develop or maintain NHL skills. It’s a little bit sad that Michael was essentially discarded, but it just didn’t make hockey sense to keep him on the big team. Manny Legace is on a two-way contract and would save the organ-eye-zation some money if he were to be assigned, but Legace gives the team a better chance.
Bad break for Leights, but Manny Legace deserves this.
On Tuesday, the Hurricanes earned one standings point and lost another goaltender. Carolina had a one goal lead late in the third period, but Manny Legace gave up a bad goal to Sergei Kostitsyn which sent the game into overtime. In the overtime period, Carolina had a man advantage for the final two minutes of play, but failed to cash in on the four-on-three advantage.
The shootout went six rounds, with Maxim Lapierre getting the goal and Carey Price making an improbable skate save on Matt Cullen.
Carolina has earned points in three straight games, and Brandon Sutter scored again. These are good things. But the rather bad news is that Michael Leighton suffered an apparent groin injury in the second period.
On Sunday, the Hurricanes finally ended their horrific 14-game winless streak. It wasn’t the prettiest win in the world, but since there’s no column in the standings for “ugly win”, we’ll chalk it up in the “W” column. Twice, the Canes had three goal leads in the second period. With 6:15 to play in the second, the Canes had a 4-1 lead, but the next eight minutes of gameplay were a train wreck. Fortunately, the Canes emerged out of the shootout with a win, and a tremendous weight was lifted off of the RBC Center. The kind of weight that’s lifted only when one’s career depends on it.
The weight was lifted off the players, the fans, the PA announcer, the hot dog vendors, the organist, and just about anybody who has any connection to this team. The celebration on the ice and in the stands was sort of like the ones we’ve seen after winning playoff series, and at this point, it feels about the same.
On Saturday, the Flyers handed the Hurricanes their third straight loss and their sixth in the last seven games. Also, they scored their eleventh shorthanded goal of the season, and Jeff Carter scored his league leading 19th goal to win it in overtime.
Sergei Samsonov scored his third marker of the season early in the third period on a power play. Although the Canes are still struggling with the power play, they have managed to score PP goals in two straight games. It’s a small step, I know.
To add to Carolina’s injury woes, defenseman Nic Wallin left the game in the third period with what appeared to be a left ankle injury. No call-up has been made for today’s game, but it doesn’t seem likely that he’ll play. Add Wallin to the ever-growing list of injured defensemen. Frantisek Kaberle. Tim Gleason. Dennis Seidenberg. And of course goalie Cam Ward and winger Scott Walker are still out. So far, the Hurricanes have 104 man-games lost to injury.
On Friday, the Hurricanes used two third period goals to beat the visiting Senators 2-1. The win was coach Peter Laviolette’s 163rd behind the Carolina bench and his 240th overall NHL win. He is now the winningest US born coach in NHL history.
I realize that this accomplishment pales in comparison to Scotty Bowman, who won a like billion games and nine Stanley Cups. I also realize that the Detroit Red Wings invented the sun and the moon, but that isn’t my focus.
Playing in just his fifth game, goaltender Michael Leighton picked up his fourth win and has continued to be impressive as a backup.
Joe Corvo, playing in his second game against his former team, got the game winner.
On Sunday night, the Hurricanes needed some heroics from goaltender Michael Leighton in order to squeak out a 3-1 victory in Anaheim. The Canes took three of a possible four points in California, getting the six game road trip off to a good start.
Michael Leighton got his second start of the year, and he was much better than he was in his win against Tampa. Partial credit on that goes to better defense in front of him, denying second chances. Mostly, though, the credit is his for having better rebound control and better awareness.
Rod Brind’Amour and Eric Staal got key goals late in the game, and Ryan Bayda continued his impressive campaign by scoring his second goal of the season.
For the second time in as many nights, the Hurricanes dug a hole for themselves in the first period. For the second time, they climbed all the way out. This time, they needed overtime to do it, but they beat the Lightning 4-3.
On Friday night, Carolina got scoring from a bunch of unlikely sources. Tonight, they brought out the big guns. Matt Cullen had one marker, Rod Brind’Amour had one, and Eric Staal had two, including the game-winner.
Carolina was very sluggish and undisciplined early on, but as the game wore on, they were the team with all the jump and none of the penalties.