Carolina Hurricanes: 3 takeaways from loss to Blues

RALEIGH, NC - OCTOBER 27: Brett Pesce #22 of the Carolina Hurricanes collects the puck as Brayden Schenn #10 of the St. Louis Blues falls to the ice during an NHL game on October 27, 2017 at PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images)
RALEIGH, NC - OCTOBER 27: Brett Pesce #22 of the Carolina Hurricanes collects the puck as Brayden Schenn #10 of the St. Louis Blues falls to the ice during an NHL game on October 27, 2017 at PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images) /
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RALEIGH, NC – OCTOBER 27: Cam Ward #30 of the Carolina Hurricanes lunges to cover a loose puck during an NHL game against the St. Louis Blues on October 27, 2017 at PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images)
RALEIGH, NC – OCTOBER 27: Cam Ward #30 of the Carolina Hurricanes lunges to cover a loose puck during an NHL game against the St. Louis Blues on October 27, 2017 at PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images) /

2. Cam Ward is settling into the backup role nicely

Scott Darling was brought in from the Chicago Blackhawks during the off-season and signed to a contract extension to be the set in stone starter. Cam Ward and Eddie Lack were not an effective combination for the past few seasons.

It is a different story this season. Darling played well against the Leafs and Ward was great against the Blues. Ward finished with 32 saves on 34 shots. That was a good follow-up from his 48 save performance against the Edmonton Oilers.

A big concern for Carolina fans entering the season was having this change of role negatively affect Ward. The decline that Ward had seen over the past five seasons was expected to continue this season. No signs of that actually happening have been seen.

Head coach Bill Peters has limited the amount of starts that Ward has got this season. With 18 back-to-back games on the slate in 2017-18, Ward will definitely get a good workload this season, though.