The Hurricanes beat the Maple Leafs in overtime last night by a score of 3-2. I'm betting that the Leafs and their fans probably feel that Carolina should take the two points and run. It seemed like most of the breaks went the Canes way as well as most of the calls, but that's hockey sometimes. Caniacs have been on the opposite side of those games before.
I thought the game started slowly for Carolina. They gave up their mandatory 1st period goal and the uneventful period ended 1-0, Leafs. The 2nd period started better for the Canes and they appeared to skate with more intensity. It seemed like they controlled the puck for large chunks of time and were able to put 16 shots on goal. One of them found it's way in the net and Tim Gleason got credit for it, on a shot from the point. After a long review the goal was finally put on the scoreboard and the contest was tied, 1-1.
About 3 minutes into the 3rd period, Scott Walker beat a Leaf in a race to the puck to avoid an icing call. After a short series of shots and passes, the puck came out to Tim Gleason again and he took another shot on goal. Walker tipped the puck into the net, to make it 2-1. This goal was also reviewed for a long time to see if Walker hit it with a high stick, but apparently the replay was inconclusive and the goal stayed on the board. The Leafs also had a possible goal reviewed on a wrap around chance by Jason Blake. The replays again were inconclusive and since it was waived off by the on ice official, it was ruled no goal. The Leafs lost all of these reviews and the war room is in Toronto! People can't complain about biased officials there, for this game anyway.
Toronto was finally able to tie the score though with just 12 seconds left as Matts Sundin got one under Cam Ward in the crease. Believe it or not, this goal was reviewed as well. (That makes 4, but who's counting?) This review finally went Toronto's way though, and the game went into OT. But about 2 minutes into overtime, Nik Antropov took a hooking penalty, (that looked more like a slash), and the Canes went on a man advantage. Unlike their previous 5 powerplays in the game, this time they scored as Rod Brind'Amour slammed home the game winner.
After the game the Leafs were incensed and I believe that Antropov might have slung his stick at an official. If so, he will be suspended and we'll have to check on that later today.
Carolina had 6 powerplays to Toronto's 2, yet the only PP goal they could muster was on the 4 0n 3 at the end. I thought that the team could have played better, but you never complain about getting 2 points. A win is a win, even if it isn't a masterpiece and I thought that the team worked hard for the most part, even if it wasn't pretty. Rod Brind'Amour was 1st star because of his all-around good game and of course, the game winner. Scott Walker and Tim Gleason were the other 2 stars as they both had a goal and an assist each.
That's 2 excellent games in a row for Walker. I bet he's opposed to changing the current icing rule to no-touch icing! His hustle play in the 3rd period is a perfect example of why the league should leave that rule alone.
Cam Ward had another very good night. That last goal he allowed by Sundin was a tough one and he was probably interfered with, but that is rarely if ever called in that situation. The Red Wings make a living notching goals while having lunch in the goalie's crease. If they happen to knock the goalie around a bit while they are there, all the better. Tomas Holmstrom is color blind, he can't tell the blue ice from the white, but I digress.
It was announced in the arena that Sundin earned his 1300th point on that goal. The big, talented captain for the Leafs had another good game, but somehow missed on a couple of earlier decent chances on partially open nets. Sundin has apparently waived his no trade clause so he can be moved to a contender. Let the bidding begin!
In some bad news for the Hurricanes, Matt Cullen is still suffering from the affects of his concussion and had to sit out the game. Laviolette said afterwards that he is considered "day-to-day" and will play again when he is ready. Carolina desperately needs his help on the powerplay as well as his regular presence on the 3rd line.
In a weird turn of events, Jeff Hamilton played the game even though he was placed on waivers and cleared them earlier in the day. He could still be sent to Albany, or placed on re-entry status. Someday when I have a lifetime on my hands, I'll have to sit down and read all of the different waiver wire rules.
Finally, the Hurricanes announced that they obtained Joe Jensen from the Penguins in exchange for forward Dave Gove. Maybe Casey Borer vouched for this kid since they both graduated from St. Cloud State, but he's only scored 2 goals in the AHL so far this year. I expect that this move won't have any affect here in Carolina. More stuff at lunchtime.
Steve Miller Band