The Carolina Hurricanes’ second line of Patrick Dwyer, Jordan Staal and Nathan Gerbe led the team to a 2-1 win over the Colorado Avalanche Tuesday night by scoring both goals and combining for six points.
Dwyer had the best night of the trio and arguably for both teams, scoring the game-winner, creating the opportunity for the first goal and playing a strong defensive game.
On the first goal, Dwyer hustled to a Ryan Murphy dump-in, winning the puck from an Avalanche defenseman, fighting to the side of the net against Nate Guenin and pushing the puck to the front of the net where Gerbe was.
The former Sabre shot point blank on Semyon Varlamov, who made the save, but played the puck to Staal, who shot the puck into the open net.
Dwyer’s goal came on a two-on-one with Gerbe later in the second period. Gerbe slid the puck across the ice and past the defenseman to Dwyer, who was able to put the puck past Varlamov.
If there was any player that competed with Dwyer for best player on the ice, it was Justin Peters, who played another strong game, making 33 saves and fixing some defensive lapses at crucial times.
The only goal that Peters did allow was on the power-play when a shot leaked through him and Paul Stastny was johnny-on-the-spot to knock in the rebound as it laid behind the goalie.
It was an unfortunate goal, but Peters battled back strong and did not allow the Avs to tie the game.
Another strong line for the Canes was the fourth line, which held the puck in the offensive end and dominated in the corners, wearing out the Avalanche defensemen.
The first line also had a strong game from a defensive standpoint, specifically Eric Staal.
The Hurricanes played a strong game overall, with the first period being one of their best periods of the season. The team was hard on the forecheck and won a lot of the battles in the corners and boards.
However, the team took a defensive stand in the third period and did not create a lot of scoring opportunities. It worked tonight, but taking the foot off the pedal doesn’t work every night, so the Canes will have to be careful of that in the future.
But the Hurricanes should be proud of this game. They went out and did the things that needed to be done to win the game and if they play like this in the future, wins should not be hard to come by.