The Carolina Hurricanes crossed another contest off of their long road trip but could never find their legs in this game as the Vancouver Canucks dominated them, 5-1. This was the second loss in a row for the team and they are now 2-2 for the season.
There is not much positive to report about this game for the Canes as they continue to struggle with major problems in their defensive zone. The new lines created by the coaching staff never seemed to gel and failed to generate a consistent scoring effort for much of the night.
Patrick O`Sullivan showed some individual spark on offense and was rewarded with a goal late in the second period, but Vancouver would score two more in the third to put the game out of reach. Little used backup goalie Cory Schneider, (11 career NHL games) was able to shut down the Canes whenever they did come close to generating any other offense.
Former Hurricane defenseman Andrew Alberts got the scoring going for the 'Nucks five minutes into the game and things just got worse from there.
Quick Hits and Stats:
- The Canes won 39% of the faceoffs for the game. Staal was 5 of 18 for 29%, Sutter was 8 of 16 for 50%, Jokinen was 3 of 5 for 60%, Dwyer was 4 of 11 for 36%, and Skinner was 3 for 6 for 50%.
- The team had 26 blocked shots led by Joe Corvo with 5.
- Eric Staal had a team high 5 shots on goal. The Canes had 33 for the game.
- Carolina was 0-5 on the powerplay, (including a short 5-on-3). Vancouver was 2-5.
- While the Canes had 33 official shots on goal to 28 for Vancouver, don't be misled by that stat. The Canucks had better chances and much more puck possession time. The Canucks also had 26 shots blocked and missed the net 16 times for a total of 70 shots. The Canes had 15 shots blocked and missed the net 17 times for a grand total of 65 shots.
Tuomo Ruutu had 6 hits while Tom Kostopoulos was next with 5.
- A few of the Canes had minor injuries to deal with and needed repair as Jay Harrison took a puck to the face, Sergei Samsonov took a stick to the face, and Brandon Sutter had an awkward fall. All players returned to the ice and nothing seemed serious.
After the game, Joe Corvo admitted that he felt "sluggish". He said many of his teammates felt the same way, even if they did not admit it. "It's pretty ridiculous" he replied, when asked about the team's travel schedule.
Things don't get easier for the boys as they next travel to San Jose for a Tuesday night match with the Sharks. What will the coaching staff do with the lines next?