Winnipeg Jets (8-9-4) at Carolina Hurricanes (8-11-4)
Friday, Nov 25, 2011, 7:00 PM EST | RBC Center | Raleigh, NC
Game Day Must-Reads
Up-to-Date News and Information Live from Rinkside
Tonight's Starting Goaltenders:
|Hurricanes - Cam Ward||19||1083||8||8||56||3.10||600||544||.907||1|
|Jets - Chris Mason||4||179||1||2||8||2.68||75||67||.893||0|
2:40 1st: A good start for the Canes, helped by a Zach Bogosian interference call just over a minute into the game, but yet again the snakebitten Eric Staal can't find the net, shooting it wide of Jets goalie Chris Mason with a few seconds left in the power play. If Staal doesn't lead the league in missed chances, he's got to be near the top of the list.
6:57 1st: Chris Mason's last game was that wild 9-8 affair in Philadelphia a month ago, but you wouldn't know it by watching him play tonight. Claude Noel went with a very hot hand, at least in terms of his stats against Carolina: in five career starts he's 3-2 with a 1.35 GAA and a .953 save percentage. Compare that to his career stats against everyone: 290 GP, 2.63 GAA, .911 S%. Wow.
11:30 1st: Tomas Kaberle's Canes career in a nutshell: great pinch to keep the puck in the zone and create a 3-on-2 down low, overskate it, away goes Blake Wheeler the other way. Pretty much sums up his first 23 games, no?
14:04 1st: Say this for Jeff Skinner: he might not be the biggest guy in the world, but he can stick up for himself no problem. Eric Fehr nailed Skinner with a late hit along the near boards, and Skinner responded with a booming check a few seconds later that caused everyone to come together at an offside whistle. Derek Joslin took up for Skinner and gave Fehr a forearm shiver in the scrum, but there were no penalties assessed.
14:46 1st: Jets lead 1-0; Kane 9 (unassisted) A few seconds after a good defensive play snuffed out a Carolina offensive rush, and Evander Kane came streaking back the other way. The Canes had numbers back, but they all went to the near side and left Kane alone to beat Cam Ward on his own, which he did, roofing a perfect shot just under the crossbar. Not much the Canes' goaltender could have done about that.
End 1st: Not much doing on either side after Kane's goal. Shots were 14-7 Jets in the first period, although it didn't seem quite that one-sided. Jets defenseman Dustin Byfuglien went down to the ice after an awkward collision with Tim Gleason in front of the Canes' net, looking like he may have cut his nose on an inadvertent high stick. He stayed on the bench to the end of the period, but he was noticeably slow coming off the ice.
4:00 2nd: Not sure what it is the Canes are missing tonight, but they sure aren't moving their legs. The Jets are getting a free entry into the zone every time they come down the ice, and the Canes are doing absolutely nothing to counter. It's like they're still in a tryptophan hangover from yesterday or something.
5:17 2nd: Canes tie it at 1; Tlusty 4 (Sutter, McBain) Right on cue, Jiri Tlusty shows some offensive skill in deking twice to pull Mason down to the ice and roof it to tie the game at 1. Nice play by Sutter to pass it around a defender at the blue line to spring Tlusty, but Tlusty got his money's worth on that play.
6:25 2nd: Jets back up 2-1; Ladd 8 (Bogosian, Antropov) And just more than a minute later, former Cane and current Winnipeg captain Andrew Ladd poked the puck after Cam Ward couldn't cover it on yet another Winnipeg rush into the zone. Tomas Kaberle did a bang-up job of standing there and watching Ladd put the Canes in another one-goal hole.
10:25 2nd: It's come to this: Tomas Kaberle is being booed by his own fans every time he touches the puck. Not the whole crowd - just small pockets - but still. Rattle that one around for a bit.
15:30 2nd: As if you needed more proof that it's quickly turning into One Of Those Nights, Jamie McBain took a nice backdoor pass on a slowly-developing 3-on-2 and fired it square into Mason's chest, angrily slamming his stick against the near boards after the whistle.
18:45 2nd: But that might have been eclipsed by this: Brian Boucher headed to the locker room for repairs after taking a puck tipped out of play in the face while sitting on the bench. You know it's a rough night when the backup goaltender is injured while taking zero seconds of ice time.
End 2nd: The Canes end the period taking four lowly shots, compared to Winnipeg's 13 for a game total of 27. Yep.
Start 3rd: Still no Boucher on the bench. That is not a good sign.
5:49 3rd: Nothing doing offensively for the Canes, and they can't even enter the zone cleanly, what with all the drop passes to nobody and the continual fumbling of the puck in the neutral zone. Every time they do get in the zone they get no more than one shot off, and Mason stops it without the problem. What happened to the team that was playing firewagon hockey for three straight games?
13:05 3rd: The boos from the upper bowl have started in earnest after another punchless Canes power play. Also a few assorted "Mo Must Go" chants here and there. It's getting ugly, folks, and it isn't any prettier on the ice.
18:15 3rd: Tomas Kaberle looked to have tied the game, skating in from the point uncovered....and he missed the open net, despite the red light turning on and the goal horn sounding. Yes, it was that blatant, and it was that much more inexcusable that he didn't score.
End 3rd: Bryan Little scored into the empty net with 9 seconds left and the Jets leave Raleigh with a 3-1 win. Words fail me.