From the Coach:
Crazy specialty teams game for sure. They got the jump on it, obviously, all three of their goals. Three for six... we took some penalties that were unnecessary, but good answer by the power play in the third period to respond.
(On Zykov) You gotta be at the net, though, too right? He’s smart enough to know that, and he was at the net at 5-on-5. We used him on the power play, we’ll continue to do that while he’s up and see what he does. I thought he was fine tonight... I’m sure he was a little bit nervous, but he settled in and gave us some nice minutes.
(On Ward) I thought he was good, he made some big saves when we needed them.
It’s a good group in that room. There’s good people, they care. It has been a tough stretch here... and tonight we found a way... Once we got the flow of the game going, I liked our team.
(On the penalty kill) It’s been good all year, and recently here it’s struggled a little bit, and it’s about clearing the puck. We’ve failed to clear, so we’re in our zone too much and we can’t get guys off when they’re a little bit tired. So, we’ll address that and work on that.
From the Locker Room:
(On scoring 20 goals) It’s a nice number I guess, but I didn’t have any goals before I got here, and I didn’t think about it, but it’s a nice number but I just want to get some more goals.
(On if he’s met his own expectations) Yeah, pretty much I guess. First let’s say, 20 games, were pretty tough for me, but after that I got more comfortable and get some confidence, so I think I got used to the smaller rink pretty fast and after that I played better.
I think we have played pretty well for a while, but just couldn’t win, so it’s nice to get some wins.
(On his second goal) Good shot by Faulker, and after that good battle from Lindy and a couple of nice passes and I just put it into the empty net, so it was a great goal from those guys.
I was excited to play tonight. It was a tough challenge against a really tough team, and for the most part I felt really comfortable. You gotta step up, and try to keep the guys in the game early.
(On the Rangers) They’re big and skilled. They’ve got some guys that can really fly down the wing too, and I look at a guy like Zuccarello who I think is a really underrated player in this league, just really smart. He can make a lot of plays and makes that line go, so tough challenge against a very good team, but it’s really nice to be able to get a win. It’s been a while for myself personally to get a win, and that’s why we play, you wanna feel good after a game, and tonight we certainly do.
(On Aho’s growth) He was good right out of the gate. You’re seeing a quiet confidence. He’s a very quiet kid, very humble kid. Obviously, kudos to his family for his upbringing to be that mature at his age in this league. He’s a pro already. He takes care of himself, he’s probably in the gym working out right now... He’s a valuable player for our team and will be for years to come.
- Valentin Zykov tallied his first career goal in his first career game to give the Hurricanes a 2-1 lead in the first period.
- Cam Ward turned aside 40 out of 43 shots in the winning effort tonight, and did not allow a goal at even strength
- Sebastian Aho’s 19th and 20th goals of the season, both of which came on the power play, gave him some extra breathing room in the heated race for third in the NHL in goals among rookies
- The Hurricanes held J.T. Miller, the Rangers’ leading scorer, without a point for the fourth time this season.
- Tonight marked the first time since December, and only the third time all year, that Rangers goaltender Antti Raanta conceded more than three goals.
- Jordan Staal’s two assists bring him to 22 for the season. He’s now just seven away from a new career high.