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Hurricanes vs. Oilers Recap: Canes can’t complete three-goal comeback of their own, fall 3-2

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Almost a reversal of the past two games’ fortunes, but not quite enough.

NHL: Preseason-Carolina Hurricanes at Edmonton Oilers Walter Tychnowicz-USA TODAY Sports

Following the blown three-goal leads from the first two nights of the season, the Carolina Hurricanes attempted to perform their own three-goal comeback in Edmonton on Tuesday night against the Oilers. Unfortunately for the Hurricanes, on this night, the offensive finish was not there to complete the comeback, as two Lee Stempniak goals in the the third period were not enough, and the Hurricanes fell 3-2.

Once again, the Hurricanes were victims of a slow start, and unlike on Sunday in Vancouver, the Oilers made the Canes pay on the scoreboard by netting the first career goal from Anton Slepyshev to open the scoring, and a Jordan Eberle tally on a shot from behind the goal line that deflected off of Ron Hainsey and into the net. The Hurricanes themselves were afforded five different odd-man chances again Oiler netminder Cam Talbot, but were unable to solve him in the first two periods.

The second period did not begin any better than the first, as the Oilers made it 3-0 early in the second with a goal from Tyler Pitlick with a snapper from the slot right off of a offensive zone faceoff. Through two periods, although the Hurricanes held a narrow lead in shots, it was very clear that the Oilers had the better of the play by a wide margin.

Once the third period began, you could see a lot of the same things that have made the first two games maddening for the Hurricanes present in the Oilers. Edmonton laid back, and the Hurricanes pounced with two quick goals from Lee Stempniak. On the first goal, Stempniak tossed home a rebound on an odd-man rush, and less than a minute later, he slid a puck underneath Cam Talbot from right in front of the net.

As the third period continued, the play went end-to-end, but as the Hurricanes were granted a powerplay with just under four minutes, they produced two solid chances but were unable to convert. During the powerplay, Cam Ward was removed for an extra attacker and he remained out of the net for the rest of the game. The Oilers had a few empty net chances, but were unable to pot the clincher. The Canes were able to grind the puck down to the doorstep in the waning seconds, but a final glove save with two seconds remaining finished off the Canes furious rally attempt.

Game Notes

  • Martin Frk made his NHL debut on the fourth line for the Hurricanes. He received just over 10 minutes on the ice.
  • Lee Stempniak continued to show off his scoring touch. He scored twice, and has five points (3 goals, 2 assists) in his first three games as a Hurricane. He has been the best surprise so far in the young season.
  • Cam Ward stopped 25 of 28 shots, but the first goal by Slepyshev was of the softer variety, and was again to the glove-side. He made some fine saves as the game went on, but you have to wonder if Eddie Lack will be given the net in Calgary on Thursday.
  • The Ron Hainsey/Justin Faulk pairing was back together after spending the first two games in separate pairings.

Continuing the Tour of Alberta

The Hurricanes head to Calgary following the game to take on the Flames on Thursday at 9 pm. The Canes will enter the contest still in search of their first win and with a record of 0-1-2.

Rank the Performances

Here’s your chance to weigh in on how you think the team performed tonight. Upvote the players you think played well and downvote the ones who didn’t.