Tonight, the Carolina Hurricanes will embark on their quest for the Stanley Cup as they start game one against the Boston Bruins at PNC Arena. With the two sides much changed since the last time they met in the postseason. This Bruins core has put a few more miles on its legs and the Canes core isn’t so young. Carolina is flushed with scoring depth and the Bruins will be tasked with beating them.
The big news for this game is Frederik Andersen will not be the netminder for the Hurricanes in game one. His injury that he sustained during the game in Colorado will keep him out of this one too. With one of the Vezina finalists on the shelf, the Hurricanes will be forced to turn to either their back-up who’s been hurt recently, or their rookie goalie who’s been fantastic since coming over to North America.
Otherwise, the Hurricanes have a full regiment to select from. Every member of the skater core is at the disposal of the coaching staff as they get ready to take on this Boston Bruins team. All 15 of the forwards and seven defensemen are available for selection in this one and the fact this Canes team is healthy outside of the crease is important for them. They need to be able to roll 4 lines against this Bruins team.
This series is going to be a particularly interesting one for many reasons, one is because there’s not a real weakness in this Bruins line-up. Statistically, they do everything well, but by those same statistics, they’re predominantly the second best team in this matchup across the board. If the Hurricanes are serious about going deep into these playoffs, Boston is going to be a good test for the Canes.
Game one is going to be super important because it sets the tone for the rest of this series. If the Hurricanes want to get through this series, turning PNC Arena into a fortress during this series is going to be of the utmost importance. If the Hurricanes can make PNC Arena into a building that no team wants to play in, they will be a favorite to get deep into this post-season.