The Carolina Hurricanes (4-6-4) picked up a much needed win last night against a dominant Washington Capitals (9-3-2) on Edwards Mill Road. A power play renaissance and a monster night from the line of Jordan Staal, Sebastian Aho and Teuvo Teravainen was enough to put an end to a 3 game losing streak.
Rookie Sebastian Aho scores first two NHL goals, tallies 3 points
Highly touted prospect Sebastian Aho scored his first NHL goal in the first period with an assist from linemates Teuvo Teravainen and Jordan Staal. The Finn has compiled 6 points through 13 games in his first season in North America while also generating a host of scoring chances before finally potting his first goal Saturday. His mother and father were both in attendance to witness such a memorable moment in person.
Aho said after the game that his mother would be returning to Finland this week and this was the last game she was going to take in while in Raleigh. Good timing.
Jordan Staal tallies 3 assists and a goal in a breakout night
Jordan Staal played perhaps his best game of the season last night as he assisted linemates Teravainen and Aho on four goals, including Aho's empty netter. He also scored a power play goal. Staal has compiled 5 goals and 4 assists through Carolina's 14 games this year, and showed a ton of promising chemistry with the Finnish wingers Aho and Teravainen.
Dynamite AHL pairing Derek Ryan and Brock McGinn impress at NHL level
Derek Ryan and Brock McGinn have started hot in Charlotte as they are 3rd and 10th in scoring in the AHL respectively. The two Checkers were rewarded for their hard work with a call up just 2 days ago. They looked right at home and held their own last night against an elite Capitals team.
Bickell earns postgame award along with Aho
Hurricanes forward Bryan Bickell, who is out indefinitely after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, earned the postgame award in the Hurricanes locker room alongside Aho. After the game, head coach Bill Peters spoke on Bickell saying, "He's part of what we're doing moving forward, one way or the other."
Cam Ward continues hot streak
Cam Ward stopped 19 of the 20 shots he saw for an outstanding save percentage of .950, his third successful start in a row. Both Ward and Lack have received a lot of scrutiny for their play this year but Ward has been nothing but impressive lately. Additionally, his season long save percentage has finally risen above .900. Expect Peters to ride Ward's hot streak for the foreseeable future.
Moral of the Story
The Hurricanes earned a badly needed win tonight against a very tough division opponent. This was Carolina's second game and first win in a five game home stand in which they will try to make up ground in the Eastern Conference. Slow season starts have long plagued the Canes, and they have dug themselves yet another hole to climb out of early in this season. Tonight was certainly a step in the right direction.