Hurricanes 5, Predators 2

The Carolina Hurricanes celebrate a Jeff Skinner goal in Nashville on Thursday night - Bruce Bennett

Jeff Skinner nets first career hat-trick to lead Carolina

For the second game in a row, Jeff Skinner was looking for a hat-trick, but on this night he was able to knock a third goal in as the Carolina Hurricanes took care of the Nashville Predators, 5-2 at Bridgestone Arena on Thursday night.

Justin Faulk and Riley Nash also scored for the Hurricanes while Justin Peters made 20 saves on 22 shots for the visitors.

Faulk got the scoring started just 27 seconds into the game when he beat Marek Mazanec on a harmless looking shot that the goalie probably did not see.

The period ended up 1-0 and the Hurricanes are now 7-0-2 when they score first in a game.

The second period opened up as Mike Fisher knocked one in for the Preds just 50 seconds in.  The home team made it 2-1 as a high deflected shot got by Peters, but Skinner took over after that.

Skinner tied it up 6:11 into the second period and then Nash scored his second of the season to give the Hurricanes back the lead, 3-2.

Skinner would then score again on a powerplay with just 52 seconds left in the period.

The third period went back and forth until the former Calder winner potted an empty netter to complete his first NHL career hat-trick.

The team battled injuries throughout this game as they lost Mike Komisarek, Drayson Bowman, and Patrick Dwyer to various ailments.   Status reports on the players will be released tomorrow.

The Canes will hustle back home for a game on Friday night against the San Jose Sharks.

Game Notes:

  • The Canes outshot the Preds 23-22 and were led by Skinner with six shots.
  • Ron Hainsey had a team high three blocked shots and played 24:37, good for second on the team.  Justin Faulk once again had a team high 26:33 of ice time.
  • Justin Peters coughed up a few rebounds but looked solid again for most of this one.  He stopped a key 2-on-1 in the second period when the score was close.
  • The powerplay went 1-5 and looked better as they were able to establish more possession time.  Elias Lindholm hit the post on one attempt and there were a couple of other near misses.  They failed on another long 5-on-3 though.  The penalty kill was perfect, (0-4).
  • Post game interviews are at Canes PR.
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