The Carolina Hurricanes lost in pretty brutal fashion Friday night in PNC Arena, as the New York Islanders scored the game-winning goal with 14 seconds to play after the Canes tied things up earlier in the final minute of the game.
In the end, the Canes lost 2-1 in a very Islanders hockey game, as chances were hard to come by for both teams. Vincent Trocheck finally broke through on the scoresheet with 56 seconds to play and Carolina’s net empty, but the Islanders won in regulation with a hard-fought goal from Kyle Palmieri.
Following the loss, Carolina head coach Rod Brind’Amour, defenseman Tony DeAngelo and Trocheck spoke with members of the media.
Here is what they had to say:
On if that was a frustrating performance all around: It was a great first period. We did everything we needed to except score. That’s probably the game. If we get ahead it’s a different game. They do a nice job of protecting everything and keeping it to the outside. From my point of view, we were really gassed. There was no energy in our legs. We had no speed to get in and get on them. They did a nice job with a lot of blocked shots. They did that kind of thing to keep us away from getting any real traction after the first period.
On the gut punch at the end: Oh yeah, those are tough. We had a good first, but the second and third were no good. The fact that we got one late was like ‘ok, maybe we’ll get something out of this.’ We turn around and blow a little assignment at the end. That’s a tough way to end the game, for sure.
On the power play: They’ve been terrible. Let’s just be honest. The second unit has actually been pretty good. They get in every time and get some action, but our first group has got to get way better. But we’ve got stuff to work on, which is good.
On what specifically isn’t working for the first unit: They’re not executing. There’s no speed. They’re just coming up kind of nonchalant. There’s got to be more, you’ve got to have a little more intensity there. We’ll get it back.
On if he might change the personnel: No. I’ve got my five best guys out there. That’s how you do it.
On Ethan Bear’s performance and coming back against the Islanders: I don’t know that they were all over us. There was not much going on. But on that play, for sure. He’s been out for a while. It’s going to take him some time to get up to speed. A little bit of rust, for sure.
On Brendan Smith’s injury: I don’t know. I didn’t get the chance to talk to him.
On this game being a preview of the playoffs: I don’t know. I don’t know too many teams that play it exactly like that. But the grind part, for sure. Low scoring maybe, potentially, no doubt.
On if it’s tough to go from facing wide-open Buffalo to the Islanders: Yeah, we haven’t seen this in a long time. Is it tough to shift gears? Not really. We know what to expect coming into the game. Everybody knows how they play. They did it right to the T, so they’re happy with how they did it and it got them the win.
On if it felt like the Canes got the result they deserved: I think it could have went either way. Both teams could have won, both teams could have lost. It was a pretty even game. They’re a desperate team, right? They’re still in it. They’ve got to win just about every game to get in. We played hard, they just found a way to win.
On the power play’s struggles: Yesterday wasn’t bad, we had some good looks and shots. You can’t be mad at that. Obviously you’re frustrated that they don’t go in, but if you move it around it’s all you can ask for. They’ve got to go in at some point. Today it was just no good. I thought the other unit made some nice plays. They had some nice chances there on a nice seam pass by [Seth Jarvis]. But overall we’ve just got to do a better job. The Islanders are tough. We know that. They’ve got a good PK, kind of like ours. They play a similar way. But we’ve got to find a way to get a little more.
On the Islanders’ physicality and style: They’ve got an identity. They’ve been the same way for years. They’re a real good team. I don’t think the standings really tell you where they are at. If you look at the standings it would tell you they are not as good as they are. They had a tough start. They’re just a good team. I thought we played ok, but not good enough.
On getting the equalizer and then giving it back: I don’t think we took a breath. But it hurts whenever you get one back late and they score. It starts at the beginning of the game. It’s not just that last shift. We’ve got to start better. I don’t know what it is. But if we get off to a better start in the first period and get a lead then it’s a different game.
On if the high stick he took from Zdeno Chara in the third period was explained as a follow through: Yeah.
On what the Islanders did so well defensively in the second period: They blocked a lot of shots in the second period. We had a lot of shots from the outside. I think it’s just a matter of getting to the net. Against these guys they pack it in pretty tight, so getting to the dirty areas and getting the greasier goals in front of the net. They did a really good job of getting in shot lanes when we got the puck to the point, and we’ve got to do a better job of finding a way around that.
On if it’s tough to go from facing wide-open Buffalo to the Islanders: No. We play different teams every night in the NHL. We do pre-scouts that show us what each team does. Yeah, they’re two different teams, but it’s no different.
On getting ready for the playoffs: Every game right now, 11 or 10 games left in the season, they’re all getting us ready for the playoffs. We’re fine-tuning things. There’s things that we definitely need to work on right now. We’ve got to use these next 10 games to amp ourselves up.
On what particular needs to get better: Our power play stands out to me.
On the 6-on-5 goal maybe giving the power play a boost: I don’t think it gives us a boost in the power play. If anything it just shows us what it takes to get those kinds of goals. With an extra man, sometimes it just needs to be getting the puck to the net and getting extra bodies there. A lot of times 6-on-5 that’s how those goals are scored. It’s a little bit different with two less guys on the ice on 5-on-4.