From the Coach
Good game. Real good game. Two real good teams. I thought it was outstanding. Lots of up and down, lots of action, lots of grade A’s both ways. I thought it was a good game.
I thought both teams had a lot of good chances. It wasn’t for lack of chances for us. We were pushing, we stayed aggressive, we stayed on our toes. In overtime, there were a couple looks, but nothing outstanding either way. I think both teams know how to defend, so it’s hard to create in that situation, but I liked the effort.
[Regarding the physical liberties taken with Skinner:] We want to compete. We want to make them pay on the scoreboard. When it’s physical, dig in. It’s Christmas. Better to give than receive.
In the Room
There are ways of making it easier on ourselves and finding ways to win games. I don’t think we did a terrible job. We had a great third period. We didn’t sit back, we created lots of chances, and we hit a few posts. We were still moving our feet and still creating plays.
There’s never an easy game in this league. We have another big match tomorrow, and we need some points to keep moving forward.
There was a period of time in the second where we loosened up defensively and gave up some chances. But that’s a good team over there, pretty tight both ways. We’d have liked to get one there on the PP. We can take some positives.
We had a couple looks in overtime. Keep doing good things like that, and sooner or later those will go in for us. We have another chance tomorrow to come back, do it again, and hopefully get a win next time.
Sometimes we get away from our game trying to protect a lead. We need to stay on the things that got us there. Over the course of a long season the bounces even out, so keep plugging away, creating chances, creating opportunities, and sooner or later those will go in for us.
Both teams played good. We just need to find a way to win these tight games. Tomorrow’s a new day, and we have a new chance to win that game.
I don’t think we changed too much. We just need to try to make some plays, and you have to play smart when you have the lead. It was kind of a lucky bounce, but I think we played the right way. We couldn’t just get the win.
If we’re able to have structure in our offensive zone, we’re spending more time in their zone. Just with that, that gives them less opportunities to create chances and create offense.
It seemed like both teams were playing for points. That wasn’t what we were wanting to do, but it seemed like we weren’t putting too much pressure on them. Neither were they, really, at that point. In the third period you just have to be harder in all areas.
Everyone can see, our division is flying away. Five of the top seven teams in the league. You’ve got to win the division games. We’re on the outside of that right now, and we have great opportunities to pick up points, gain ground, and not give them opportunities. We have quite a few games left in our division, and there are opportunities for us to get points no matter what the situation is. They’re sitting there on the other side saying the same thing. You have to take the opportunities when you get them.
- All three players on the Canes’ top line have multi-game point streaks, led by Derek Ryan who has a five-game streak where he’s scored eight points (3 goals, 5 assists). The line of Ryan, Skinner and Victor Rask has sixteen points in the last three games.
- Skinner now has 11 goals and 22 points in 30 career games against the Capitals, his most against any team.
- Sebastian Aho also has a two-game point streak with three points in that stretch. He had two assists for the second time this season, the first coming on October 22 against the Flyers.
- Alex Ovechkin continues to own the Hurricanes. His goal in the second period was his 32nd career against Carolina, and he now has 77 points against the Canes in his 11-year career, the third-most against any team (81 against the Lightning and 88 against the Jets/Thrashers franchise).
- The Canes finally conceded a power play goal after seven games and 21 penalties of perfection. It was the Canes’ second long streak of killing penalties of the season, and was the first power play goal they’ve given up in the month of December. Even with that, it dropped them all the way to 91.3%, still almost three full points in front of the second-place Blues.
- The Canes will not skate tomorrow morning, unsurprisingly. Peters said that Ward will be in net again, and assuming no injuries, they will send out the same lineup against the Sabres omorrow night.