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Carolina Hurricanes at Montreal Canadiens: Game Preview and Discussion

A night after a disappointing loss to Colorado, the Hurricanes will look to replicate the effort and hopefully see it rewarded as a six-game road trip begins in Montreal.

NHL: Carolina Hurricanes at Montreal Canadiens Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

Rod Brind’Amour liked plenty about the performance of his Carolina Hurricanes last night, but it wasn’t rewarded as three mistakes found their way into the back of the net, enough to ruin the effort and leave the Hurricanes empty-handed despite controlling play for long stretches. Tonight, against a Montreal Canadiens team well back in the playoff race, the Hurricanes simply need two points by any means necessary, as they begin a six-game road trip that could make or break their playoff hopes.

Vital Statistics

Category Hurricanes Blue Jackets
Category Hurricanes Blue Jackets
Record 21-7-3 13-13-7
Goals/Game 3.23 2.54
Goals Against/Game 2.48 3.12
Shots/Game 31.52 28.70
Face Off Win % 54.4% 46.2%
Power Play % (Rank) 30.6% (1st) 14.8% (26th)
Penalty Kill % (Rank) 82.9% (9th) 74.0% (26th)
ES Corsi For % 53.04% 46.16%
ES PDO 100.96 99.42
PIM/Game 07:21 06:43

Goaltender #1

Category James Reimer Joonas Korpisalo
Category James Reimer Joonas Korpisalo
Record 12-4-1 8-10-5
Save % 0.909 .900
GAA 2.68 2.98

Goaltender #2

Category Alex Nedeljkovic Elvis Merzlikins
Category Alex Nedeljkovic Elvis Merzlikins
Record 7-2-2 5-3-2
Save % .930 .912
GAA 1.96 2.91

Game Notes

  • This is the third and final matchup between the two teams, but the only one at Bell Centre. The Hurricanes are looking for a season sweep of the Habs, after a shootout win in the season opener and a 3-1 victory on New Year’s Eve.
  • Of the six goals scored in open play this season, three were scored by players no longer with the team: Erik Haula had scored in both games, and Lucas Wallmark scored in the season-opener.
  • Sebastian Aho’s point streak is now at 14 games, and he scored a goal the last time these two teams played at the end of 2019. Aho’s streak is the longest in Hurricanes history, and he has four games to go to catch Mike Rogers for the all-time franchise record.
  • Aho can also break a tie for the most February goals in franchise history with a tally tonight. He’s tied with Ray Ferraro at the moment; Chicken Parm had 11 goals in February of 1989.
  • Tonight is the fourth time in team history the Canes have played on February 29, and the first time since 2004 when they tied 3-3 with the Wild. That’s the only time since relocation that the Canes have played on February 29.
  • Trivia question: Two of the nine leap-day birthdays in NHL history belong to former Hurricanes. Cam Ward is one. Who is the other?
  • Even though this is the start of a long road trip, it’s actually a short trip away from Raleigh. The Canes will return home tonight and will practice at Raleigh Center Ice on Monday and Wednesday (they’re off tomorrow and Tuesday) before they head to Philadelphia.

Projected Lineups


Andrei Svechnikov - Sebastian Aho - Teuvo Teravainen
Nino Niederreiter - Vincent Trocheck - Martin Necas
Warren Foegele - Jordan Staal - Justin Williams
Ryan Dzingel - Jordan Martinook - Brock McGinn

Joel Edmundson - Jaccob Slavin
Haydn Fleury - Brady Skjei
Jake Gardiner - Trevor van Riemsdyk

Anton Forsberg
Alex Nedeljkovic

Injuries: Dougie Hamilton (IR broken leg), Brett Pesce (shoulder), Sami Vatanen (foot), Petr Mrazek (upper body), James Reimer (lower body)


Tomas Tatar - Phillip Danault - Brendan Gallagher
Paul Byron - Max Domi - Jordan Weal
Artturi Lehkonen - Nick Suzuki - Joel Armia
Charles Hudon - Jake Evans - Dale Weise

Ben Chiarot - Shea Weber
Brett Kulak - Jeff Petry
Xavier Ouellet - Christian Folin

Charlie Lindgren
Carey Price

Injuries: Jonathan Drouin (ankle), Victor Mete (IR broken foot), Noah Juulsen (IR post-concussion), Karl Alzner (healthy)

(Trivia answer: Bobby Sanguinetti)