Red and Black Hockey
Entries with the tag: minnesota wild
On Friday, one day after Brandon Sutter, the young alternate captain of the Carolina Hurricanes was the big star, youth was again the star. This time it was in the person of 2010 first round pick (seventh overall) Jeff Skinner. His heroics won’t be a part of the official stats, but his game deciding goal in the shootout on Friday was a thing of beauty. This is why he was drafted in the first round, and this is why he has made the big team. Pure talent.
Here’s a clip of the shootout goal taken from the stands in Hartwell Arena:
The first game of the 2010-11 National Hockey League season was played in Helsinki this afternoon, and the Carolina Hurricanes emerged with a 4-3 win over the Minnesota Wild. The same two teams will go at it again on Friday at noon, with Carolina playing the role of “home” team.
Carolina had about 375 fans make the trip from Raleigh to Finland with the team, which is more than were in the Greensboro Coliseum some nights when the Hurricanes played two seasons here.
Brandon Sutter, who had a great sophomore season last year, potted two goals including the game winner. The other stars of the game were the Hurricanes power play and specifically the mindset of the defensemen.
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 Friday night, the Hurricanes dropped their 14th consecutive game, even if they managed to force overtime. Since October 9, they have gone 0-10-4. However, the news isn’t all bad.
On Wednesday, the Canes overcame a two goal deficit only to lose 5-2. On Friday, they overcame a horrible first period in which they fell behind 3-0. Tim Gleason took a really dumb double minor early in the game which ended up spotting the Islanders two goals, but it was his goal late in the third that forced overtime. The Canes were 14 seconds away from going to shootout when defenseman Bryan Rodney, recently called up from Albany, committed a bad turnover deep in the Canes zone. This led directly to the winning goal and although the Canes looked like they would end the horrible streak, they added one more tick mark to the locker room wall.
The good news is that some of the forwards are starting to play well. With five (3/2) points in his last seven games, Brandon Sutter has looked like a Sutter, and Tuomo Ruutu is starting to assert himself. And for only the second time in this dry spell, the Canes scored more than two goals. That’s a start.