The Carolina Hurricanes, who continue to thrive on the road this season, netted a brace for Canada on Thursday with a 2-1 overtime win over the Calgary Flames. Sebastian Aho scored the game-winning goal with 52.4 seconds left in overtime, the second goal of the game for the Canes center star.
“We weren’t sharp and they’re a good team and that doesn’t give you much,” said Canes coach Rod Brind’Amour. “It was just a bit, I don’t know, a disgusting hockey game. It wasn’t fun to watch, it wasn’t fun to be a part of it to be honest. But we dug. We were fighting but we were not very sharp. We were pretty lucky.
Five takeaways from the game:
▪ The game pitted two of the league’s best goalies this season, Frederik Andersen of the Canes and Jacob Markstrom of the Flames. But some of the game’s biggest saves came from Canes forwards Teuvo Teravainen and Aho and defender Jaccob Slavin in the third period.
First, Teravainen pulled out his stick and pulled the puck off the goal line after passing through Andersen. Later, first Slavin and then Aho kept the puck out of the net with Andersen out of position, which kept him going 1-1. Andersen made 26 saves, including a few high-quality saves, and got an assist as Aho skated the full length of the ice to score the overtime winner.
“The guys made good plays on the passing ones and passed behind me,” said Andersen. “Awesome. I’ll take help sometimes.
– Jalen Chatfield has been noticed for the Canes. It’s easy to spot No.64, chess, pass and play in Zone D. There was some gnashing of teeth when defenders Tony DeAngelo and Brett Pesce entered COVID- protocol. 19, and more so now that they’re skating again, but not with the team in Canada.
But Chatfield and Max Lajoie handled everything that was asked of them. They also did it as veteran Brendan Smith gave the Canes an irregular play and Ian Cole suddenly couldn’t stay out of the penalty area. Ethan Bear, recently sidelined by COVID, was a zero Thursday with illness after taking the pre-game warm-up.
Despite the D shuffle, the Canes didn’t slip on the penalty kill and killed five of the Flames’ power plays on Thursday, including 56 seconds of a 4-on-3 by Calgary to start overtime.
– Brind’Amour doesn’t seem to find the right fit for Andrei Svechnikov. The power forward played on a line again with Jordan Staal and Jesper Fast on Thursday. He was in the lineage of Sebastian Aho. He was in the line of Vincent Trocheck.
Svechnikov is visible in games and was still visible on Thursday, but has not been a dominant player. He looks better with Aho and Teuvo Teravainen, or if not, Trocheck and Necas. Staal and Fast don’t seem like the right fit for No 37.
– How is it? Slavin said he didn’t feel so good last week, but it never shows in games and it didn’t happen on Thursday. His workload: 32:28 of ice time, of which 8:14 of reduced time. It came after playing nearly 30 minutes on Tuesday in the 4-2 win over the Winnipeg Jets.
“Obviously that’s not something we want to do,” said Brind’Amour. “We miss some great players here and hanging out, missing the guys that we are, says a lot about him because he’s done a lot of work but our squad in general.”
– Defenseman Noah Hanifin scored Calgary’s goal Thursday in the second period and could have scored a second. Gaudreau for a breakaway.
Hanifin was stopped by Andersen on the first period penalty shot with the puck slipping just off the post, but beat Andersen with a point shot in the second period. The former D-man of the Canes, traded with Elias Lindholm with Calgary in June 2018, has become a staple of the Flames roster. In the quick times department: Hanifin has now played 462 games.
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