The Carolina Hurricanes donned their Hartford Whalers throwback uniforms for the second time this season against the Boston Bruins Tuesday night. Despite coming back and forcing overtime, it was Carolina’s inability to score on their power play that allowed Boston to go home with a 4-3 victory.
Things got physical early as Micheal Ferland landed a high hit on Marcus Johansson. No call was made on the hit but the Bruins decided to police everything on their own. Shortly thereafter Noel Acciari slammed Nino Niederreiter in to the boards while Niederreiter was facing the glass. Once again there was no call on the play.
This directly set up an old school planned fight right off the ensuing face off between Ferland and David Backes. Evander Holyfield would be proud as Ferland was the clear winner landing multiple punches. As good as the fight was, Ferland would go to the locker room after the bout and would not return to the game.
The Whalers would get the scoring going at the 6:30 mark of the first period. Calvin de Haan threw a simple wrist shot on goal that redirected off Sebastian Aho’s skate and past Jaroslav Halak. The goal was originally credited to de Haan but later changed to Aho.
How about Sebastian Aho net-battling with Zdeno Chara... and winning. 1-0 Hurricanes in Boston. pic.twitter.com/PBw6rGXacv— Brett Finger (@brett_finger) March 6, 2019
Things would stay physical as Andrei Svechnikov landed two large hits. After his second hit John Moore tried to retaliate and instead took a cross checking penalty against Brock McGinn.
Andrei Svechnikov lowers the boom on Moore. Moore takes a retaliation penalty a few seconds later. Canes power play. pic.twitter.com/Kq7mslySDi— Brett Finger (@brett_finger) March 6, 2019
The power play for the Canes was canceled out by a Justin Williams hooking call that set up 4 on 4 play. Carolina would then get a short 4 on 3 power play for 35 seconds after Charlie McAvoy threw his stick at Warren Foegle. Despite the multiple attempts at the man advantage, Carolina was unable to get another goal on the board.
Boston controlled play for the second half of the first period but thanks to steady goaltending the Whalers took a 1-0 lead into intermission.
The second period would start off with another goal for Sebastian Aho. Nino Niederreiter sprung Aho for a breakaway and the Finn was able to squeeze the puck through Halak’s legs.
The Whalers would get their fourth power play a few minutes after Aho’s goal. Even though Carolina had the man advantage it was Boston who had the best opportunity with a Brad Marchand breakaway. Curtis McElhinney came up with a giant save on Marchand to keep his team up by two goals.
About halfway through the period the Bruins would get their first power play chance of the game but the Whalers defense would shut it down admirably.
Not long after the great kill the Bruins would finally get on the board after McElhinney was unable to control a rebound off a redirected wrist shot. Chris Wagner, who was alone in front of the net, tapped the rebound home to bring the Bruins within one.
Despite McElhinney’s best efforts to keep the Whalers ahead, the boys from Boston found a way to tie the game late in the second period. Jaccob Slavin turned the puck over at the offensive blue line leading to a two on one for Boston. David Krejci darted in with Jake DeBrusk on the other side of Trevor van Riemsdyk who got turned around while trying to defend the play. Krejci made a quick move to get the puck on net where a lurking DeBrusk got the rebound and found a way to score.
Early in the third period the Bruins would take their second too many men on the ice penalty of the game giving the Whalers their fifth power play chance.
Carolina’s inability to do anything with their man advantage chances would come back to bite them this time as the Bruins generated another two on one opportunity. Brad Marchand skated in with Patrice Bergeron shorthanded and they made no mistake quickly scoring the Bruins third goal.
The Whalers, though, got the goal back at the 12:17 mark of the third period off a slap shot from their captain Justin Williams. The goal was setup up by a great cycle play that featured Aho, Williams, Justin Faulk, Brett Pesce, and Jordan Martinook all touching the puck before Martinook found Williams for the one timer.
The game would remain tied through the end of regulation and Carolina went to overtime for the second consecutive game.
Boston controlled the puck for the majority of overtime applying lots of pressure every time Carolina touched the puck. Jake DeBrusk applied pressure to Justin Faulk and forced a turnover in the Carolina end. He then skated around behind the net and found David Krejci in front who quickly deked and scored to end the game.
This was Carolina’s first loss in their last six games and first overtime loss since January 22nd in Calgary, leaving them with a 36-23-7 record. The Whalers are now retired again (for now?), but the Hurricanes will return to action this Friday at home against the Winnipeg Jets.