After being eliminated by the New York Rangers in game seven of their second-round series against the original six franchise, the Hurricanes are now done for the year. But there was a lot that the organization accomplished for the first time during this season, and those achievements should not go unnoticed because the team couldn’t capture the Stanley Cup.
Let us start way back at the beginning of the year when the team got off to the best start in the history of the team. Going completely unbeaten in the month of October, flying through their opponents and ending up unbeaten nine games into the season, being the last unbeaten team in the NHL this year. It’s something worth remembering because we might not see that again.
Carolina managed to win both games at Madison Square Garden. Considering they had won once at MSG in the last 10 years coming into the season (A 3-0 win in the 2018-19 season) this was an incredible feat. They have now beaten the Rangers in Toronto as many times as they’ve beaten the Rangers in New York in that time frame and while that seems like an improvement from previous years.
For the first time in the history of the organization, they captured back-to-back division titles. They won their first Metropolitan Division title at the tenth time of asking, and those two facts combined are really impressive. It’s not every year you get to win back-to-back divisional banners and win different divisions for both of them so that was a neat little trick, or so I thought.
We know the organization managed to set a new franchise record in wins and points. Both of these totals eclipsed the tallies set by the 2005-06 Stanley Cup-winning Carolina Hurricanes roster that took the league by storm (pardon the pun) in the first year of the salary cap and changed the game by forcing a transition to speed instead of muscles and brute force.
Carolina managed to overcome their Boston Bruins demons in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. That’s not something to just glance at. Carolina overcoming their demons from Beantown may have signaled the end of an era for the original six franchise, and that’s a very nice thing to know from the perspective of the Hurricanes organization.
We know this didn’t end the way we wanted it to. We were all hoping Carolina would be the last team standing at the end of this dance and we hoped they’d capture the cup for a second time, but it didn’t happen this year. We know that this is a team that will be back, but for now, it’s time to step away from the ice surface at PNC Arena and move into the summer with heads held high after correcting a lot of the abysmal record in the franchise’s history