The last thing the Hurricanes needed before a national day of giving thanks and full hearts was a loss at home. We need momentum to carry over much like the calories many of us will receive today from our exorbitant meals. With the matchup against the Maple Leafs, with stars across the offense, the task was a big one.
Thankfully, the Canes were able to pull off a statement win of sorts by downing Toronto at home, 5-2. Sure, two of the goals were empty netters, but Carolina came out with fire, maintained a lead through the slog of the second period and got a big game-winner when it counted.
There’s one Cane I’m thankful for in particular last night: Andrei Svechnikov. Boy, was he running his motor throughout the night. You know how they say you can tell more from a player from your eyes than the box score? In last night’s case it was true for Svechnikov.
He put up five shots in the first period and eight on the night, converting one for an empty-net goal. He rarely gave the puck away and played a power game, especially around the crease. Svechnikov wasn’t credited with an assist on the first goal of the night, but his work helped set up the chance at the crease that Trevor van Riemsdyk converted (he did even more with the puck in the seconds leading up to the below clip, too).
Svechnikov centers it, Wallmark and Martinook whack away in front, and van Riemsdyk navigates the loose puck home. 1-0 Canes over the Leafs. pic.twitter.com/gBsePQc8lG— Brett Finger (@brett_finger) November 22, 2018
Of course, we also have to be thankful for our elite secondary backup goalie (which is definitely a normal thing). Curtis McElhinney has had his ability to make back-to-back starts questioned for much of his career of late, yet he silenced everyone last night against a dangerous former team.
McElhinney went 30-for-32 on Wednesday after going 33-for-34 against the Devils on Sunday, which adds up to a .940 save percentage in those starts. With what’s been going on in Carolina’s net in past seasons, that’s more than enough to be thankful for. He’s squaring up pucks well, not allowing dangerous rebounds and keeping his cool (both on the ice and in interviews — he’s almost too laid back).
So let’s be thankful that we have a win to celebrate today before we get into the scrum of Black Friday.
- Happy Thanksgiving!
- “Take a second, appreciate what you’ve got...”
Head inside the locker room after tonight's big win pic.twitter.com/0l33vtiu0w— Carolina Hurricanes (@NHLCanes) November 22, 2018
- And the Checkers won last night, too, thanks to Martin Necas’ two goals, including this OT winner:
- The lunch/dinner table is the perfect place to have a family fight about William Nylander trade talks. Here’s the latest from Pierre LeBrun so you’ll win that battle. [The Athletic $]
- There have been a flurry of coaches fired this season already. Why is that? [ESPN]
- Jake Dotchin is happy to be playing with the Ducks after an unfortunate exit from Tampa Bay. [TSN]
- The NHL had a float in this morning’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade (featuring a dancing unicyclist, might I add):
We're out here representing!— NHL (@NHL) November 22, 2018
Mike Richter and Bernie Parent ✅
Warrrm gear from @NHL_Shop ✅
New friends at the #MacysParade ✅@Discover Thanksgiving Showdown on @nbc?
1pm ET Friday pic.twitter.com/XqzV57tija
- The point streak continues in ... uhhh [checks notes] ... Ottawa?