It can always be hard to hit the ground running on the road, but the Carolina Hurricanes got essentially a perfect start to not only the road trip, but also to the game Tuesday night against the Winnipeg Jets.
On the first shift of the game, Andrei Svechnikov nearly converted on the Canes’ first chance on goal — the puck missing by an inch and hitting the post — but seconds after that, a Jaccob Slavin point shot did find its way in past Connor Hellebuyck.
Jaccob with a lil sneaky sneak pic.twitter.com/NpbYd7jfTB— Carolina Hurricanes (@Canes) December 8, 2021
After that, the Hurricanes were cruising in Winnipeg, generating chance after chance and suffocating the Jets. The Canes nearly connected on a few more chances throughout the opening 20 minutes, but Hellebyuck stayed strong.
However, the second period had a similar hot start for the Canes and this time it was Sebastian Aho jamming away at the loose puck in the crease that extended the lead.
Grit— Carolina Hurricanes (@Canes) December 8, 2021
Winnipeg would challenge the goal for goaltender interference, but after review, the call on the ice stood.
So the Canes had a chance to extend the lead on the power play, except just a little ways into the power play, Vincent Trocheck was whistled for a phantom hook and then at 4-on-4, the Jets would convert a chance.
And then from there, the Canes couldn’t get out of their own way and after back-to-back penalties against Ian Cole, the Jets broke through again with a Pierre-Luc Dubois, between-the-legs deflection that Frederik Andersen couldn’t react to in time.
Despite limiting most of Winnipeg’s even strength offense, the Canes were back to a tied game.
But the Hurricanes didn’t let the wind get knocked out of their sails, and when they got another shot at the power play late in the second, the team found the lead again.
It was Martin Necas with the put back after a mad scramble around the crease saw multiple Canes players miss the open cage, but luckily Necas didn’t fumble it.
Nechy for the lead ✅— Carolina Hurricanes (@Canes) December 8, 2021
Hometown kid with the assist ✅ pic.twitter.com/3QA88kTPMg
Okay... stop me if you have heard this one before, but the start of the third period was — once again — a hot start for Carolina.
A bit of hardworking forechecking caused Winnipeg to take a penalty and unfortunately for the Jets, the Hurricanes’ power play has once again found life.
The same way that Vincent Trocheck found his own rebound in front of the crease to sweep past Hellebuyck to re-extend the lead to two.
Tro would NOT be denied pic.twitter.com/jpv8ZNOrFt— Carolina Hurricanes (@Canes) December 8, 2021
It might have been easy from there, except that Cole committed his third penalty of the night. It would be his final penalty of the night, however, as he was given five and a game for kneeing Mark Scheifele — their second ejection in two games.
Yet the Jets’ power play was no match for the Canes’ kill as in the five minutes, Winnipeg only managed two shots on net and were jeered by a myriad of boos from the home crowd, which may as well have been cheers to the Carolina killers.
The Hurricanes kept it on lock from there and won 4-2 to kick off the road trip.
The Canes will be back in action Thursday night at 9 p.m. as they take on the Pacific Division leading, Calgary Flames.