Andersen Leads the Hurricanes to a Comeback Win after a Shaky Start

PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA - OCTOBER 30: Frederik Andersen #31 of the Carolina Hurricanes blocks a shot by Sean Couturier #14 of the Philadelphia Flyers during the second period at the Wells Fargo Center on October 30, 2023 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA - OCTOBER 30: Frederik Andersen #31 of the Carolina Hurricanes blocks a shot by Sean Couturier #14 of the Philadelphia Flyers during the second period at the Wells Fargo Center on October 30, 2023 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images) /

The Carolina Hurricanes went nine games without facing a Metropolitan Division opponent. This week, the team will play three straight against division foes. First on the list was the Philadelphia Flyers in the City of Brotherly Love on Monday night with Frederik Andersen in net. On the eve of Halloween, it got a bit scary, but the result had the Caniacs ready to go trick or treating.

The only change to the lineup was in the net, as Andersen led the team onto the ice after a strong performance against Seattle last Thursday night in Raleigh. Opposite him was Carter Hart for the Flyers, who has been phenomenal in the early going.

The Hurricanes started the game on time, playing a phenomenal first 15 minutes. They’d get the opening goal early from the fourth line. It took everyone to get it done, but it ended with Andrei Svechnikov sliding a puck to Stefan Noesen, who opened up Carter Hart to put it home as he fell. Just 3:11 into the game, the Canes were on a roll.

As strong as the start was, the end of the period was rough. A bad turnover in the neutral zone by Martin Necas allowed Sean Couturier to spring Owen Tippett behind the defense. He made no mistake with his shot, beating Frederik Andersen short-side to tie the game. A few minutes later, the Flyers’ fourth line pushed them ahead. Nicolas Deslauriers fought to get the puck to the front of the net for Garnet Hathaway, who found the slightest amount of daylight between the pads of Andersen to give the Flyers the lead going into the break.

The second period came with good news and bad news. The good news was the Hurricanes beat Carter Hart twice. The bad news was only one of them counted. The Canes thought they’d tied the game early in the period as Jack Drury cleaned up a rebound at the front of the net for his first goal of the season. Unfortunately, the Flyers immediately challenged the play, and the verdict was swiftly passed down from Toronto. Stefan Noesen was deemed offside, negating the goal and restoring the Flyers’ one-goal lead.

Fortunately, the Canes would get another chance to tie the game after Michael Bunting drew an interference call as he chased the puck. Just under a minute later, he got the tying goal, which counted this time. After the face-off was tied up, Stefan Noesen was able to push to Michael Bunting, who blasted the shot through Carter Hart to knot the game. Aided by a massive save on a Scott Laughton breakaway, the Hurricanes went into the second intermission in a stalemate.

Frederik Andersen decided to put on a goaltending clinic in the third period. The Flyers hemmed the Hurricanes in their defensive end for a good chunk of the period, but the Canes’ netminder was out of his mind, making some acrobatic stops to keep the game even. Carter Hart was doing his part on the other end. Martin Necas split the defense, but Hart got his toe on Necas’ backhander to keep it out of the net. If Necas had waited a second longer, he probably could’ve cleared Hart’s pads for a tap-in goal.

Overtime felt like a certainty with the way both goalies were playing. That didn’t suit the Hurricanes. They decided they needed to end it in regulation. Michael Bunting made a beautiful backhanded pass to Teuvo Teravainen in the slot, and he put it off the post and in with 3:47 left to give the Canes the lead late. Words won’t do Bunting’s pass justice. With time winding down, the Hurricanes didn’t allow Carter Hart to get on the bench for the extra attacker. They circled the zone for most of the final 90 seconds, and by the time Hart made it to the bench, it was too late. The Hurricanes claimed their first division win of the season, coming from behind to take two points away from the Flyers.

It was an uneven game for the Hurricanes after two outstanding performances at home last week. They started on fire, then took their foot off the game. They were strong in the second period but on their heels for the entire third. They got a few good bounces, and they capitalized on them. Special teams decided the game. The penalty kill was perfect, killing all five penalties taken. The Hurricanes were only on the power play once, but it resulted in the game-tying goal in the second.

Andrei Svechnikov made the fourth line tough to handle. He recorded his first point of the season on the opening goal, and then Jack Drury nearly had the line’s second of the game, only for it to be called back. Stefan Noesen recorded a goal and an assist as well. Michael Bunting had his best game as a Hurricane, playing into the final two goals. I’m still in awe of his pass to Teuvo Teravainen for the game-winner.

This win wasn’t possible without the masterful performance in the final 40 minutes by Frederik Andersen. He probably wants both goals he allowed in the first period back, especially the second one. However, it didn’t dictate the rest of his night. He was challenged one-on-one several times, and he won all but one battle. He kept the Hurricanes in the game, allowing them to extend their win streak.

Following Monday’s victory, the Hurricanes will travel to The Big Apple to face the New York Rangers on Thursday night. Madison Square Garden is often a place of nightmares for the Canes. Add the hot start the Rangers are on, and we could be in for a spirited 60+-minute battle. To complete the shot trip, the Canes will be in Brooklyn to face the Islanders on Saturday night.