The Penalty Box is not Your Friend.
The Carolina Hurricanes have done an exceptional job limiting their penalties but will need to step up their discipline game for their visit to Southwest Florida. The Lightning boasts the third-best powerplay in the league, currently clocking in at one powerplay goal-per-game. Any opportunity handed to Tampa can very quickly turn into a goal-against, especially if it is a penalty killer headed to the bin.
The penalty kill will have to be extra-vigilant in the event the Canes find themselves at the man disadvantage. Despite currently owning the league’s seventh-overall best penalty kill at 84.4%, the Hurricanes have to be at top-form against special teams as effective as Tampa’s. Success on both ends vastly increases the chances of a Hurricanes win in Florida.
Joel Edmundson is one player who the Hurricanes need to reign himself in for tonight’s game, as he ranks ninth in the league for overall penalties-in-minutes with thirty-nine across fourteen penalties in twenty-six games. The next most penalized Hurricane is Nino Niederreiter with twenty penalty minutes across ten calls in twenty-six games.
One strategy that Rod could employ is limiting Edmundson’s ice-time against the Lightning, as he has been pulling a minimum of a penalty-per-game this season. It’s only one piece of the puzzle to winning, however.