The Carolina Hurricanes that played the first two periods of hockey in the Joe Louis arena last night looked like a completely different team than the one that played in Columbus Friday night. Leading 4-1 over the Detroit Red Wings until late in the second period, it looked like the Canes would finally see a win in “the Joe”. But the Wings would not have it, and came roaring back to defeat the Canes 5-4.
Carolina lit the lamp first just seventeen seconds into the first period. Jiri Tlusty, with a little help from Captain Eric Staal and Chad LaRose, put one past Ty Conklin for the only goal in the first.
The Canes would start the second period just as quickly, with a goal from LaRose 26 seconds into the second period. It was beginning to look like the Red Wings weren’t going to best Cam Ward, who shut the team out in their last meeting in Raleigh. But the Wings finally answered back with a goal from Henrik Zetterberg. Then the Canes really got an opportunity to redeem themselves on the Power Play with a 5-on-3 after Jeff Skinner drew two back to back Red Wings penalties. (Including returning Captain Nicklas Lidstrom, who now only has 26 penalty minutes for the season.) Jamie McBain capitalized with a goal and just seventeen seconds later, Tlusty put the Canes up 4-1 over the Red Wings.
Perhaps the Hurricanes awoke the Joe Louis beasts with that much of a lead over the home team as just a minute later, Zetterberg and Todd Bertuzzi scored just eighteen seconds apart. The second period would end with the Canes leading by just one goal.
Admittedly, the Hurricanes definitely looked sloppier in the third period and the Red Wings definitely put on the pressure. It’s not difficult to see why it’s hard to win in the Joe, the crowd was deafening (even just watching it on TV) and the Red Wings do not like to lose in their house. Jiri Hudler tied the game for the Red Wings and Drew Miller would ensure the game did not go into overtime.
Both the Canes and Caniacs wanted to see this losing streak in Joe Louis end, and get a win for our Michigan boys, LaRose and Tim Gleason. And there was much disappointment over the Canes losing a three goal lead. But personally, I much preferred the team I saw on the ice last night, over the team I saw in Columbus.
Come join me on the bright side for a moment Caniacs:
-This is the second game in a row Jeff Skinner has not taken a penalty and in fact, drew two penalties to give Carolina the Power Play opportunity that resulted in two goals.
-Chad LaRose continues his contributions (and his march to 20 goals for the season) with an assist and a goal in his hometown.
-Eric Staal continues to be hot with one goal and one helper for the evening.
The Hurricanes stay on the road to face the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday evening. By then, it will have been 50 days since the Maple Leafs have won on home ice.
Topics: Cam Ward, Carolina Hurricanes, Chad LaRose, Detroit Red Wings, Drew Miller, Eric Staal, Henrik Zetterberg, Jamie McBain, Jeff Skinner, Jiri Hudler, Jiri Tlusty, Nicklas Lidstrom, Tim Gleason, Todd Bertuzzi, Ty Conklin