Last night in Raleigh, the Carolina Hurricanes pulled off another improbable comeback as they’ve done numerous time this year. This time it was against the Los Angeles Kings who were up 4-1 at the end of the 2nd period but the Canes stormed back to win 5-4 in overtime.
But that was last night.
Tonight, the Hurricanes are in upstate New York to take on a pesky Buffalo Sabres team who is fighting for their playoff hopes. Carolina enters the game on a six-game winning streak and a nine-game point streak. On the other side, the Sabres have a seven-game point streak of their own.
This is the final game for both teams before the NHL All-Star Game break and neither wants to go in to a long layoff on a loss so it shapes up to be a good contest tonight in Buffalo.
- Sebastian Aho is on fire for the Canes scoring goals in five straight contests and totaling 15 points in his past 11 games. He finished January with 11 goals in the month.
- One area of concern is with Carolina’s All Star representative Andrei Svechnikov. He went the entire month of January without lighting the lamp and only had five goals total since the start of December. The Hurricanes need more from him if they want to make a deep run this year especially given what happened to Max Pacioretty.
- Tonight will be the first of three Hurricanes games this season to be broadcasted on TNT. The other two will be in March.
- If you’ve heard all the hype about Tage Thompson this season, it’s real. He’s got 68 points (exactly 34 goals and 34 assists) in just 49 games, however he’s day-to-day currently with a lower-body injury.
- The Sabres are a very dangerous offensive team. They have four players with 50 points or more already whereas the Canes have none over 46. They lead the league in goals for per game at 3.76. Their power play is equally as dangerous sitting at nearly 26% good for 4th in the league.
- The biggest issue for the Sabres is in goal. Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen, Craig Anderson, and Eric Comrie have all started over 13 games for the Sabres with Luukkonen getting the most starts at 20. None of them have been very good with 41-year-old Anderson having the best stats with a .918 save percentage and a 2.73 GAA.
- This is the second of three meetings this year for the teams with the Hurricanes taking the first game 5-3 on November 4th. The final contest with be on April 8th in Buffalo.
- Take a look back at Sebastian Aho’s game winner from last night along with a message from Justin Williams:
Never out of it. Belief can inspire and propel you to great things. Great win @canes— Justin Williams (@JustinWilliams) February 1, 2023
- The Florida Panthers have announced the roster for their Alumni Game which will feature both Panthers and NHL alumni including multiple former Hurricanes. [Panthers]
- Chicago Blackhawks legend and controversial figure Bobby Hull has passed away at age 84. [Yahoo]
- Ovechkin not taking latest All-Star Game experience for granted. [NHL]
- 32 Thoughts touches on the Hurricanes interest in Horvat, who they may go after instead, and the location of the next All Star Game plus much more. [Sportsnet]
- Bettman named 2023 recipient of SBJ Lifetime Achievement Award. [NHL]
- Islanders Lamoriello hopeful on a Bo Horvat extension, what could it look like? [NYI Now]