For the second straight night, the Carolina Hurricanes jumped out to a 2-0 lead that they could not hold as they lost to the Winnipeg Jets, 5-3 in a division matchup on Saturday night at the MTS Centre.
The Jets scored five unanswered goals, including three in the second period, to take control of the contest and eventually put it out of reach.
The Canes did most of their damage early in the game as Jussi Jokinen and Jeff Skinner scored goals just two minutes and three seconds apart, (at 4:40 and 6:43). But after taking just one penalty in St. Louis the night before, the Hurricanes went back to their undisciplined ways and took four penalties in the first period alone.
The Jets took advantage and evened the score with two powerplay tallies later in the first, the second with just barely a second and change left on the clock. The home team then put the game away in the second period with three more goals, making the score 5-2.
The Canes did not give up in the third and tried to make it close as Tuomo Ruutu scored his second of the season with the help of a nice play by Skinner, but the visitors could not capitalize on some key powerplay chances, including a 5-on-3, and ended up losing, 5-3.
After starting their road trip off with two promising wins over tough foes, (Buffalo and Boston), the team finished with two disappointing loses against teams with worse records. Winnipeg is certainly a team that Carolina will need to beat on a consistent basis if they want to make the playoffs this season. Next up is Ottawa.
- After a strong preseason, Brian Boucher's stats in his two games that counted leave a lot to be desired. (0-1-1, GAA 4.46, save percentage .850). The Canes will certainly need a better performance from him than they got in this particular game if they want to properly rotate him and Cam Ward.
- The team defense only allowed 24 shots on goal in this contest, but managed only 24 shots of their own. Eric Staal and Joni Pitkanen had five shots each while Skinner had four.
- According to our inside stat man, the Jets out-chanced the Canes, 15-10.
- Taking Ondrej Pavelec out after the second goal and replacing him with Chris Mason made a big difference for the home team. Mason ended up being the game's number one star.
- Skinner had a hand in each of the Carolina goals, finishing with a goal and two assists and a team high three points.
- After a strong start of the season, the Carolina powerplay has been ineffective lately and went 0-6 in this game. Winnipeg was 2-6.
- It was another very bad night in the faceoff circle as they finished at 39%. (Staal 38%, Sutter 39%, Jokinen 54%, Brent 25%)
- Staal went over his average ice time again and had 21:48 of TOI. Pitkanen had a team high 26:12 while Anthony Stewart remains in the dog house with a game low, 5:38. Even Brett Sutter had 6:54.
- Pitkanen was credited with a team high three blocked shots. The Canes had a total of 11.
- Staal finished with a -1, adding to his continued league worst plus/minus stat, now at -10.
Post game interviews to follow: