Skinner celebrates shootout goal (Phot Credit: Rob Carr Getty Images via N&O)

A Relentless Storm


Hurricanes trump Capitals 3-2

The over-the-top giddiness from last night’s victory over the Washington Capitals has simmered…a bit. It’s safe to say I was a little excited (click here if you missed the joy explosion).

The Canes had lost each of the five previous matches to the Caps until last night, and it was no easy win.

Despite three extra-man opportunities for each team during the first period, no pucks made it past either goal line.

Jussi Jokinen put his team on the right path early in the second period with his first goal in 13 games, and a power-play goal to boot. Chad LaRose had an opportunity to increase the lead with a penalty shot, but was unable to get the shot off. It was Rosey’s 400th career game.

Washington responded with wrist shots from Alexander Semin and Marcus Johansson late in the round to take the 1-2 lead.

Staal down after high stick (Photo Credit: Chuck Myers-MCT via N&O)

However, scoring wasn’t the only action taking place during the second. Eric Staal made a bloody mess of the Caps’ ice after taking a high stick. No penalty was called and the Canes captain let the officials know how he felt about the neglected call. Staal temporarily left the game for stitches, but the blood had spilled and marked Washington’s territory like a lion claiming his land. Ok, perhaps I’m still a little worked up.

Jeff Skinner fueled the Hurricanes momentum with an easy glider past Caps’ goalie Semyon Varlamov just a minute and a half into the final twenty. It was the rookie’s 27th goal of the season, and Bryan Allen was credited with the assist.

The Capitals were unable to gain ground for the remainder of the contest. Mostly to the thanks of our wall of goalie between the Canes’ poles. Cam Ward received first star of the game for his 38 saves.

Skinner’s earlier goal secured a point for the Canes as they headed into overtime. The forward had an amazing night as he also provided his team the first shootout goal.

Jokinen had the next attempt, but fell short of converting. Tuomu Ruutu sealed the victory with his third round bullet over Varlamov.

J.Skinny was named second star of the contest.

The Hurricanes bench emptied in celebration and the flicker of playoffs hopes holds for another day. Carolina collected two points while stubborn 8th seed Buffalo fell to the Maple Leafs. Tuesday’s results put the Canes three points behind the Sabres.

The team returns home to Raleigh only to face the Montreal Canadiens, another team we have failed to conquer prior to this week. Nevertheless, we are breaking old habits this week. The Habs asserted victories in all three matches this season.

Tomas Plekanec (7 points), Andrei Kostitsyn (5 points), and Michael Cammalleri (5 points) have been impervious to Carolina’s defense in the past. Collecting the fourth win in this series will require our D-men to wrap a tight noose around the sticks of Montreal.

Hurricane players who previously brought a storm against the Habs are Jokinen (3 points), Staal (3 points), and LaRose (2 points). Throw in a dash of Skinner, Ruutu, and Cole for a well rounded recipe and BAM Canes live for another day.


Tags: Buffalo Sabres Cam Ward Canes Carolina Hurricanes Chad LaRose Eric Staal Erik Cole Jeff Skinner Jussi Jokinen Montreal Canadiens Tuomo Ruutu Washington Capitals