After a blistering start, the Carolina Hurricanes (6-3-0, 12pts) are facing something new for this season - a losing streak.
The Anaheim Ducks (6-2-0, 12pts) bested the Canes 4-2 behind an energetic performance where they took the lead early and held onto it late.
The streak didn’t last long.
Only 4:06 into the game, an Adam Henrique wrister beat Mrazek to get the Ducks on the board. Three more Ducks’ goals followed, and just shy of six minutes into the second period, Mrazek was pulled in favor of James Reimer.
With Mrazek gone and the Canes trailing 4-0, it looked like the drama had gone out of the game. However, events changed quickly. The man at the center of it - as he has been so often this year - was Erik Haula.
The Canes had squandered two powerplay chances before Hampus Lindholm took an interference penalty at 8:40 of the second period. On the subsequent powerplay, a clearance attempt was held in by Dougie Hamilton who swung the puck to Teuvo Teravainen who then found Haula unmarked in front of the net for a tip-in goal, Haula’s 7th of the season.
Eric Haula scores his *7th* goal in 9 games as a Hurricane. Haula has a 5-game point streak, as well. pic.twitter.com/SLaviP2oFY— Brett Finger (@brett_finger) October 19, 2019
However, less than a minute later, Haula’s night would be over. As he raced to retrieve a loose puck behind the Duck’s net, he was checked hard by Josh Manson. Haula struggled on the ice with the look of a man who had been concussed before being led to the dressing room. The Canes announced he would not return due to an upper-body concern.
With Haula in the room, the Canes’ energy picked up. Haydn Fleury held a puck in at the Duck’s blue line and then got his first NHL goal on a slapper from the top of the circle.
HAYDN FLEURY FIRST NHL GOAL ALERT— Brett Finger (@brett_finger) October 19, 2019
Fleury with a bomb, Niederreiter pointed at him to let him know that it was all his. 4-2 game in Anaheim. pic.twitter.com/TK9IeW7RcZ
With the Canes back within two, Joel Edmundson would tussle with Manson in his first bout as a Hurricane.
The third period saw the Ducks sit back and absorb what little offensive pressure the Canes could muster, as the Canes were reduced to ten forwards - having only dressed eleven at the outset.
The Canes now head home from the California road trip with one win and two losses. They’ll have to wait almost a full week before their next game. With their leading goal-scorer potentially sidelined for it, they’ll look to do something else new for this season - end a losing streak.