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Carolina Hurricanes vs. Montreal Canadiens: Game Preview

The Carolina Hurricanes are playing a hockey game Thursday! I repeat, THE CAROLINA HURRICANES ARE PLAYING HOCKEY!

Carolina Hurricanes v Montreal Canadiens Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images

In the words of the great Etta James: At last, My love has come along, My lonely days are over.

The Carolina Hurricanes will play hockey once again Thursday night, 12 days since they last laced up the skates against another team. The good news for the Canes is that the roster is mostly back, as Frederik Andersen, Brendan Smith and Jesper Fast remain on the COVID protocol list that at one time had 12 people on it for the Canes.

A refresher on how things were going for the Hurricanes: Carolina is on a two-game winning streak and has won six of its last seven games. In the month of December (which was originally supposed to feature 14 games) the Canes are 6-2-0.

Thursday they will welcome in the Canadiens, who are, well, bad. Montreal has just seven wins on the season. The Habs are coming off an overtime loss to the Lightning Tuesday, and they’ve won just one of their eight games in the month of December.

Vital Statistics

Category Hurricanes Bruins
Category Hurricanes Bruins
Record 54-20-8 51-26-5
Goals/Game 3.38 3.08
Goals Against/Game 2.44 2.66
Shots/Game 34.12 36.12
Face Off Win % 53.9% 54.2%
Power Play % (Rank) 22.0% (13th) 21.2% (15th)
Penalty Kill % (Rank) 88.0% (1st) 81.3% (9th)
ES Corsi For % 43.86% 56.14%
ES PDO 113.44 86.56
PIM/Game 12:00 22:00

Goaltender #1

Category Frederik Andersen Linus Ullmark
Category Frederik Andersen Linus Ullmark
Record 35-14-3 26-10-2
Save % .922 .917
GAA 2.17 2.45

Goaltender #2

Category Antti Raanta Jeremy Swayman
Category Antti Raanta Jeremy Swayman
Record 15-5-4 23-14-3
Save % .912 .914
GAA 2.45 2.41

*A note on the tables: Obviously Frederik Andersen is still in protocol, and Alex Lyon is on the taxi squad, but it’s easier said than done to change it up there. Lyon is 1-0-0 with a 2.00 GAA and .931 Save %.

Game Notes

  • The Canes are 11-3-2 in their last 16 games against the Habs, including a 4-1 victory back in October.
  • All time, Carolina holds a 76-103-20-7 record against Montreal and a 40-30-5-7 mark since relocation.
  • Let’s talk about Jesperi Kotkaniemi. He’s recorded a point in three straight games, and he’s got one career goal in one career game against Montreal. Kotkaniemi has as many goals this season as the Canadiens do wins, by the way.
  • Tony DeAngelo is two assists away from 100 in his NHL career.
  • The Hurricanes are 57-19-9 in regular season games in 2021, as they head into their final one Thursday night. That’s already the most wins and points (123) in a single calendar year in franchise history.