Sebastian Aho is a superstar.
The Canes won a thrilling game over the Pacific-leading Vegas Golden Knights Tuesday night in PNC Arena, beating Vegas 4-3 in overtime on an Aho game-winning goal.
The Sensational Sebastian Aho pic.twitter.com/pvRx8YLm5N— Carolina Hurricanes (@Canes) January 26, 2022
Aho’s winner was his second of the game, as Carolina bounced back from two blown two-goal leads to get two points in the extra period. Nino Niederreiter and Vincent Trocheck both scored in the second period after a ho-hum first, with Aho adding a third-period tally on the power play.
For Vegas, Nolan Patrick used a brilliant individual effort to cut a 2-0 deficit to 2-1, while Brett Howden and Nicolas Hague scored two straight late in the third to overcome a 3-1 deficit and force overtime.
Along with Aho, Frederik Andersen was spectacular between the pipes for the Canes. He stopped 23 of 26 shots faced, making some incredible saves in overtime to keep Carolina alive. Laurent Brossoit was good for Vegas as well, making 25 saves in a losing effort.
The first period was, well, boring. The teams entered the locker rooms without a goal, with the Canes up 11-5 in shots and 14-7 in scoring chances. Both teams killed off a penalty in the first, and nothing other than Andrei Svechnikov hitting the post really happened.
Carolina had some energy coming out of the locker room, and the Canes finally broke through for the game’s first goal just under five minutes into the second period.
The line of Niederreiter, Jordan Staal and Jesper Fast did some great forechecking, and it led to a chance in close for Niederreiter, who was initially denied on the near post by Brossoit. Niederreiter stuck with it, though, smacking in a puck that slipped away from the net-mouth scramble.
Less than a minute later the Hurricanes made it 2-0, with some fantastic play off a line change leading to a Trocheck goal. Svechnikov collected the puck the second he stepped on the ice, skating it into the zone and threading a primary assist across to Trocheck for the score.
Both teams had some chances in the next few misses, with Vegas hitting the post and Martin Necas missing a wide-open net.
The Golden Knights cut the lead in half late in the second period, as Patrick unleashed an absolutely filthy move to beat the Canes’ defense and score.
Nolan Patrick Doing Things: going through the legs and scoring a goal in Carolina pic.twitter.com/kDDYtmwhpJ— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) January 26, 2022
Rod Brind’Amour challenged for goaltender interference, but it was determined that Ian Cole caused Brett Howden to take out Andersen. The Canes did kill off the delay of game penalty, though.
The Hurricanes got a golden opportunity early in the third as Alex Pietrangelo was called for a double minor for high sticking, but Carolina couldn’t capitalize. Teuvo Teravainen took a slashing penalty less than a minute into the Pietrangelo penalty, shorting the advantage to two minutes and splitting it up.
Neither team scored during the extended special teams segment, though Vegas certainly came close in the seconds after things went back to even strength.
A little bit of indecisiveness by Andersen, but he makes the stop.— Walt Ruff (@WaltRuff) January 26, 2022
That was one of those "hold your breath" moments. pic.twitter.com/y7h4PQ4Nwc
Carolina got another power play later on in the third period, and this time took advantage immediately. Aho won the offensive-zone faceoff and then camped himself in the shooting lane, redirecting a blast from DeAngelo just five seconds into the man advantage to make it 3-1.
But from there, things went the Golden Knights’ way in regulation.
Howden got in Shea Theodore’s shooting lane and redirected a shot to make it 3-2, and then Hague unleashed a laser with 2:30 to play and forced overtime. Right before the horn sounded, Martin Necas nearly did the spectacular, though.
Take a look:
Martin Nečas just dangled through the entire VGK team and nearly scored in the dying seconds. Unreal skill. pic.twitter.com/oQsWttIOsG— Alex Ohári ⚪️ (@FutureCanes) January 26, 2022
In the extra period, the teams exchanged some marvelous chances and some spectacular saves, with both Andersen and Brossoit making big stops before the eventual Aho winner with just over a minute remaining in the period.
The Canes will get back on the ice Thursday in Ottawa, looking to carry some momentum from this big overtime win north of the border.