- It’s been a long time coming, but the Carolina Hurricanes finally got rewarded for their effort. The game wasn’t dramatically different stylistically, but the result was, and that’s what matters. The 4-2 win over the Boston Bruins snaps the Canes franchise-long eight-game home losing streak, as the team notches its first win at PNC Arena since a 6-3 March 9 victory over New Jersey. “A sigh of relief is a great phrase. You just feel a little lighter. It’s a breath of fresh air,” defenseman Jay Harrison said. “We can move on now with some confidence knowing our effort has been rewarded.”
- Head coach Kirk Muller on the victory: “I’m happy for the guys. They’ve been playing like that for awhile. But they stuck with it. They played an intense, energized game against a good hockey club … and finally got some reward from it. That was a good win.”
- The Hurricanes set the tone in the first period, and they did so in pugilistic fashion. Kevin Westgarth, Jay Harrison and Nicolas Blanchard all recorded fighting majors (the first multi-fight game for the team this season), sparking everyone in the building from the bench to the fans. “That’s what we want to see. We want to see the character of our guys come out the way it has,” Muller said.
- Harrison’s fight was particularly notable because he challenged Zdeno Chara, who clocks in at 6-foot-9, 255 pounds. Harrison, five inches shorter and his jersey number lighter, held his own in a bout that Muller called “gutsy.” When told he got a few good swipes in, Harrison laughed and responded, “Well, that’s the idea.”
- Justin Peters was arguably the difference in tonight’s game, as he made 28 saves. None was better than the stop he made on Jaromir Jagr in the second period, what will likely be a top save of the year around the league. On a five-on-three, the puck slid over to Jagr, who was wide-open along the far side of the net. Peters lunged back, extending his glove and snaring the puck as Jagr looked up in disbelief. It was an unreal save, but a humble Peters downplayed the moment. “It was just desperation,” he said. “He’s a special player. I got lucky on that one.”
- Tonight’s game was personal motivation for Peters after he gave up two goals on just four shots Monday night in Boston. Though the Canes’ effort was similar five days prior, Peters made the timely saves tonight. Chad LaRose rewarded him with the game puck, saying, “Atta boy, Pete Dawg, way to battle,” according to Peters.
- Jiri Tlusty netted two goals for the Hurricanes, including his fourth empty-net tally of the season (ranking tied for first in the league) to seal the win as time wound down in the third period. Tlusty now has 19 goals on the season, out-pacing his previous career high of 17 set just last year. “I’ve been lucky with those,” Tlusty said of his empty-net goals. “I’m more happy for the team that we have two points.”
- The Hurricanes notched two power play goals tonight and are now 6-for-21 (28.6 percent) on the man-advantage in their last seven games. Power-play tallies from Jeff Skinner and Joe Corvo marked the third straight game in which the team has netted a power-play goal.
- The Hurricanes will now have a two-day break, their only break longer than a day this month, before taking on the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday. As Muller said before the game, it was only a matter of time before the team broke loose. Now, with a two points in hand, the team will have some confidence as they head off on a two-game road swing. “Every game, regardless of what’s on the line, we’re going to go out there and play to win. Tonight was no exception, especially with the efforts we’ve had building up to this game,” Harrison said. “We’re putting on a jersey with our name on the back, and more importantly, a crest on the front that we’re playing for.”
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - Jiri Tlusty helped the Carolina Hurricanes find a way to end their long losing streak.
Tlusty scored two goals, giving him a career-high 19, and the Hurricanes ended a seven-game losing streak with a 4-2 victory over the Bruins on Saturday.
The go-ahead goal came from Joe Corvo on a power play at 9:36 of the third.
The win was Carolina's first in the month of April and the Hurricanes also ended an eight-game losing streak at home.
"I'm happy for the guys," Carolina coach Kirk Muller said. "They've been playing like that for a while. Tonight they stuck with it and played an intense, energized game against a good hockey club. They played the right way and finally got some reward for it."
Jeff Skinner added a first-period power-play goal, the first time this season Boston had allowed two power-play goals in a game.
Carolina goalie Justin Peters stopped 28 shots while Boston's Tuukka Rask had 34 saves.
Peters' most impressive stop was a glove save on Jaromir Jagr during a 5-on-3 power play midway through the second.
"I wanted to put forth a great effort for the boys because of how hard they've been working and how great the atmosphere has been in here," Peters said. "It was nice to get a result. Jagr is an unbelievable player and it's an honor just to play on the same ice surface as him."
Tyler Seguin and Milan Lucic scored for the Bruins.
"We had some brain cramps out there tonight," Boston coach Claude Julien said. "The mistakes we made tonight were not helpful - two power-play goals. Those are things we're dealing with right now."
The teams were tied 1-1 after a wild first period that had three fights.
Boston's Shawn Thornton tangled with Kevin Westgarth at 14:14, while Jay Harrison fought Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara at 18:41. Carolina's Nicolas Blanchard, in just his second NHL game, dropped the gloves with Gregory Campbell at 19:32.
Lucic opened the scoring at 6:07 of the first, scoring his sixth goal on a deflection. Jagr had an assist for his 1,686th career point.
Skinner tied it on a power play at 19:24, taking a pass from Alexander Semin - who finished with two assists - and beating Rask from behind stick-side.
Tlusty gave Carolina a 2-1 lead at 14:04 of the second, receiving Eric Staal's pass from behind the net in the right circle and lifting it over Rask's right shoulder.
"Those guys who fought did a great job," Tlusty said. "Westy is a tough guy and Thornton is a tough guy, too. Blanch had a hell of a fight. And Harry jumping in on Chara is something else - Chara is one of the biggest guys in the NHL."
The Bruins tied it 2-2 at 17:57 when Andrew Ference took the puck from Semin at the red line and passed to Seguin for a breakaway.
Corvo, who played for Boston last season, put Carolina ahead on the power play at 9:36 of the third when he received Marc-Andre Bergeron's pass on the left point and beat Rask over the right shoulder.
"There weren't many mistakes made out there," Corvo said. "Everybody did his job tonight and we got the good result. It's always nice to score and beat your old team."
Tlusty added an empty-net goal with 28.1 seconds left.
NOTES: Boston will host Ottawa on Monday night while Carolina will visit Ottawa on Tuesday night. ... Boston C Patrice Bergeron, out since a concussion on April 2 against Ottawa, was back at full speed for the morning skate but did not dress, while C Brad Marchand remained out with his concussion suffered at New Jersey. Bruins D Dougie Hamilton was a healthy scratch for the second straight game. ... Carolina D Joni Pitkanen (five games, heel), C Tim Brent (two games, lower body), LW Drayson Bowman (two games, lower body) and RW Tim Wallace (first game, upper body) were scratches.