After a somewhat slow start, the Carolina Hurricanes exploded for four goals in the third period enroute to a 4-1 victory over the Florida Panthers on Wednesday night at the PNC.
The win gives the Hurricanes a 2-0 record so far in their preseason.
It was a special night for the coach as Brind’Amour’s son, Skyler, played for the Panthers.
After falling behind 1-0 on a Florida powerplay goal, the Canes tied the game on a tic-tac-toe play by Felix Unger Sorum, Jesperi Kotkaniemi, and Stefan Noesen early in the third.
Shortly after, Ryan Suzuki skated behind the Florida net then found an opening near the circle and put a perfectly placed shot past Spencer Knight, who played the entire night in net for the Cats.
The Hurricanes came right back down the ice again. Michael Bunting made a beautiful play when he set up Brady Skjei, who made no mistake and the Canes were up 3-1. The three goals were scored in just over three minutes.
Bunting would get an empty-netter near the end to wrap things up.
I spoke with Antti Raanta after the game and the goalie mentioned that he felt good during the game, actually better in the second than the first, though he did not see much action. He has things to work on he said. I will post more of that interview another time.
Yaniv Perets took over for Raanta midway through the second and played well.
The game got a little chippy off and on and Brendan Lemieux was usually involved. He was providing the “sandpaper” that Carolina wanted to add during the offseason.
After the game, Brind’Amour was asked about his son’s play and he said he felt that Skyler did okay. He praised Florida brass and especially coach Paul Maurice for being “classy” in setting this up for a special night.
Once again, the coach praised the play of Unger-Sorum, who is playing like he is older than 18.
Next up for the Canes will be their two games in one night experiment on Friday night. More on that later.