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Game Analysis: Hurricanes Pick Up Where They Left Off

The Hurricanes have now won seven of 10 after knocking off Eastern Conference power Tampa Bay, 4-2, Tuesday at PNC Arena.

Jordan Staal’s return to the lineup has led to significantly more wins for the Hurricanes.
Jordan Staal’s return to the lineup has led to significantly more wins for the Hurricanes.
Jamie Kellner

The Carolina Hurricanes pushed their winning streak to three games with a 4-2 win Tuesday over the Lightning at PNC Arena. Eric Staal and Justin Faulk each had a goal and an assist, and Anton Khudobin earned his sixth straight win.

Three Observations

1. Khudobin continues to be dominant for the Hurricanes. The Carolina goalie has now won six straight starts, not allowing more than two goals in any game of his streak. Although he is just 6-8-2, Khudobin’s .918 save percentage and 2.30 goals-against average has him on par with star goalies like Henrik Lundqvist and Tuukka Rask.

2. And why is Khudobin getting wins now? That’s easy: goal support. The Hurricanes have scored 15 goals in Khudobin’s past six starts — the same amount the they scored in his first 10 starts of the season. In the past three, Carolina has 11 goals and has scored first in each.

3.The Hurricanes won the special teams battle, getting a power play tally from Faulk and shutting down the Lightning with their dominant penalty kill. Tampa Bay managed just two shots on goal during their six minutes of power play time. The Hurricanes’ power play now ranks 22nd in the league at 16.9 percent, while the PK is third with an 87.3 percent kill rate.

Number To Know

22 — Seconds it took Eric Staal to score Tuesday, easily the fastest goal scored by the team this season. The Hurricanes record is nine seconds, which was set Nov. 12, 2000, by Shane Willis in Carolina’s 4-0 win over Ottawa.


Jordan Staal — Carolina has been rolling since it got Staal into the lineup following a 36-game injury. Not only did the younger Staal register two assists for the second straight game (he now has eight points in 11 games since his return), but Staal led the charge against Steven Stamkos. Stamkos saw Staal 58.94 percent of the time at even-strength Tuesday and was limited to just two shots on goal and three total shot attempts. Carolina’s ability to match its top line against the opposition’s best and win the battle has been a huge part of the team 7-2-1 record in its past 10. It's not an accident that it coincides with Jordan Staal’s return.


Chris Terry — Terry is getting his chance in Carolina’s top nine, but continues to be invisible. He’s gone 11 games without a point, and with Alexander Semin and Andrej Nestrasil both healthy extras, it won't be long before coach Bill Peters makes a change if Terry continues to be absent on the score sheet.