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Carolina Hurricanes vs Tampa Bay Lightning Game 2: Game Preview and Storm Advisory

Rinse and repeat: The Canes play the Lightning in game two of four in a row.

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Tampa Bay Lightning v Carolina Hurricanes Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images

The Carolina Hurricanes took over first place in the Central Division standings after their 4-0 win against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday. It was the most complete team performance for the Canes this season. The game also featured Alex Nedeljkovic’s first career shutout.

The Canes could stick with Ned coming off the shutout or go back to James Reimer in net while Tampa will probably stay with its starter, Andrei Vasilevskiy. The Lightning likely won’t have to go to their backup Curtis McElhinney until Thursday which is the only game on the back half of the only back-to-back set of this four-game series.

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:

  • In the last 10 meetings between these teams, Carolina has picked up points in nine of those games with a 5-1-4 record. The Lightning rank third with 3.60 goals for per game but have yet to score against the Canes this season.
  • Vincent Trocheck has gone streaking. He has a six-game point streak and a three-game goal streak. His last goal was also his 300th NHL point.
  • The Hurricanes have improved to 12-3-1 (25 points) in 2020-21, which matches the 2005-06 team for the best record through 16 games in franchise history. The Hurricanes’ .781 points percentage this season is the second-highest of any team in the NHL, trailing only Toronto’s .789.
  • Victor Hedman has six multi-point games this season. His 488 career points is just one behind Brad Richards for fifth-most in Tampa history.
  • Tampa Bay has gone three consecutive games without allowing a power-play goal and has given up just two power-play goals over the last nine contests... The Lightning rank fifth in the NHL for penalty kill percentage (86.3%) and fourth for penalty kill percentage on the road (88.9%).
  • The Hurricanes have three players tied for the team lead in points; Sebastian Aho, Vincent Trocheck, and Andrei Svechnikov all have 16 points. Vincent Trocheck and Nino Niederreiter are tied for the goal lead with nine.

Reading Assignments

  • David Ayres’ win in net is still surreal one year later. NHL dot com checked in with him about it. [NHL]
  • Jeff Skinner may be a healthy scratch tomorrow night and is having the worst slump of his career.
  • The NHL Department of Player Saftey has a lot of former players, many that were enforcers. Former Hurricane Ray Whitney brings a clean perspective to the role. [The Hockey Writers]
  • The league had to move quick to set the stage at Lake Tahoe. Why does it make sense for the league to run an outdoor game with no fans? [$The Athletic]
  • Elvis Merzlikins is week-to-week with an upper-body injury; he appeared to injure his shoulder in the third period of Saturday’s game against the Predators. [NHL]
  • Mike Babcock was named the head coach at the University of Saskatchewan. [NBC Sports]