Carolina stole game one. They swiped a victory from the jaws of defeat and took a 1-0 series lead. That means nothing tonight as the Hurricanes and Rangers will do it again at PNC Arena. It’s game two in this best of seven series between the New York Rangers and the Carolina Hurricanes. A win for the Hurricanes would dump a mountain of pressure on the Rangers going back to Madison Square Garden. A Rangers win would level the series.
Carolina needs to take this game to the Rangers if they want to take a 2-0 series lead to New York. This is a slightly later game and it starts at 8 PM Eastern as opposed to the traditional 7 PM puck drop time. Carolina cannot be late turning up to this game like they were in game one. New York ran the show in the first 2 periods, and the Canes will need to be able to hold their own when the Rangers push.
We know that the Hurricanes are unlikely to change a winning recipe. They made some changes to the line combinations in game one and I’d imagine they remain that one. Rod Brind’amour has done a good job of being fluid with his line structures so far in this series. Adjusting to what the Rangers do and what the Rangers can threaten to do will be a big part of winning this second game with the luck they required to win the first one.
If the Hurricanes are going to double their series lead, they need to wake their best players up. Carolina’s best weapon is its depth, certainly. But that cannot be the only weapon in the Hurricanes arsenal. Waking up the better players on this team like Andrei Svechnikov who has been largely a non-factor with the puck on his stick, could be huge for winning this game and this series.