Carolina Gets Defensive: Hurricanes 1, Sabres 0

Patrick Dwyer scores the lone goal, short-handed. - Jamie Kellner

Cam Ward earned the shutout and Patrick Dwyer notched the game-winner as the Canes closed their preseason with third win in a row.

Kirk Muller wanted more defense and he got it big time on Friday night as the Carolina Hurricanes took a 1-0 win over the Buffalo Sabres to close out their preseason at the PNC.

The Canes allowed just four shots on goal in the opening period and followed that up by allowing three more in the second. After two periods they held a 22-7 edge.

Patrick Dwyer scored the game's only goal while short-handed as he beat Ryan Miller with a perfect shot at an angle into the far upper corner as Miller guarded the short side.   The goal came just 2:39 into the second period.

Cam Ward did not need to stand on his head to pick up the shutout in this game, but did make some nice saves when he needed to, especially in the third period when the Sabres applied more pressure.

The win was the Hurricanes third straight of the preseason as they evened their record, 3-3. After allowing 16 goals in their first three games, the team buckled down and allowed just two goals in their last three.

Muller was happy with his team's effort.

"It's been a building block with the guys we've had out there.  We have to continue to stress defense and play a solid game.  I thought the guys played hard.  They hung in there and battled."

When asked about final cuts, the coach said he would wait until next week, especially considering the injuries.

With Jeff Skinner, Alexander Semin, Tim Gleason, Elias Lindholm, and Tuomo Ruutu out with various ailments, the cuts probably will not come until the Muller has some reassurance who will be able to play for sure in next week Friday's home opener.

The Hurricanes will take Saturday off and will be back on the ice for practice on Sunday afternoon.

Game Notes:

  • The Canes ended up out-shooting the Sabres 30-18 for the game.  Nathan Gerbe led both teams with eight shots on goal.
  • Mike Komisarek had a team high three blocked shots.  Ryan Murphy was next with two.
  • The line of Nash, Dalpe, and Bowman did a very good job with puck possession and they were able to cycle the puck in the Carolina zone repeatedly.
  • Justin Faulk had a team high 26:17 of ice time.  Andrej Sekera was next with 24:37.

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