Nashville
Predators
48-26-8
Carolina
Hurricanes
33-33-16

29 SOG
33 SOG
1st2nd3rdT
NSH
CAR
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game recap

Hurricanes 4, Predators 3

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:47 AM

Michael Smith

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Hurricanes 4, Predators 3
Nashville Predators 3, Carolina Hurricanes 4
Three Stars of the Game
Eric Staal
1st
G: 1Shots: 2
A: 2Hits: 0
PTS: 3PIM: 0
+/-: 0TOI: 22:40
Bryan Allen
2nd
Bryan Allen
D
G: 1Shots: 3
A: 0Hits: 2
PTS: 1PIM: 2
+/-: 0TOI: 20:07
Jeff Skinner
3rd
G: 0Shots: 1
A: 2Hits: 0
PTS: 2PIM: 0
+/-: 0TOI: 18:33

Tracking the Storm: Analysis

The Carolina Hurricanes capped off their most successful month of the season with a 4-3 victory over the Nashville Predators. The win was the Canes’ sixth this month, as they finish February with a 6-1-4 record, earning points in 10 of 11 games. Cam Ward made 26 saves in his return to the crease, and Bryan Allen netted the game-winning goal. “They gave it us pretty good in Nashville last time, and it was a good lesson for us,” head coach Kirk Muller said. “We knew if we didn’t play hard tonight, compete and go after them that we wouldn’t be able to stay with them in this game.”

Allen scored his first goal in 94 games and first as a Hurricane in the third period, what turned out to be the game-winner. He came out of the box after serving a slashing penalty and was off to the races on a breakaway. He slid the puck through Anders Lindback’s pads and nearly fell while celebrating. Being rumored in trades just a day prior, you couldn’t write this script any better. “Burst that bubble here, and you never know what’s going to happen in the last 20 games,” Allen joked about his goal-scoring prowess. And his breakway move? “I can’t let them all out,” he said with a toothless grin. “I guess that’s one of a couple.”

About that celebration – we can easily excuse it because, as a defensive defenseman, Allen doesn’t get the chance to pot one that often, especially on a breakaway. Muller jokingly called Allen “rusty” in the celebration department. Allen was asked about it after the game. “I thought I was going to get away with not talking about that, but obviously not,” he said. “I hadn’t scored all year, and for me to score on a breakaway was kind of neat. I was just trying to celebrate.”

Eric Staal extended his point streak to nine games (7g, 9a) with a 3-point (1g, 2a) night. He talked earlier in the season about scoring the “ugly” goals. He got one tonight, as Jeff Skinner powered to the net, sending the puck up and over Lindback and onto Staal’s stick in the crease for the easy tap-in. “We were around [the net] and buzzing, and sometimes you’ve got to get them ugly,” he said. Ward got the win in net in his first game back in just over a week. Facing just 13 shots in the first and second periods combined, Ward admitted he felt “a bit shaky.” “Come the third period, I felt like my old self again,” he said. “I was seeing the puck well and reading and reacting.” Muller said he knew this game would be an adjustment for Ward, and it would be a stiff test against one of the top teams in the League. “I thought he battled through it, and at the end of the day, he got the win,” Muller said. “That’s what counts.”

Zach Boychuk saw 14:50 of ice time in his first game under Muller, just shy of his season-high of 15 minutes. Boychuk skated on the second line and logged 2:45 on the power play. Muller took note of Boychuk’s skating ability. “I was pleased with him,” he said. “He was skating and moving. He was involved, and he had a couple of scoring chances.”

Though February is coming to a close for the Hurricanes, their homestand continues on Thursday and Saturday as the New York Rangers and Tampa Bay Lightning come to town. With six of a possible eight points in their pockets already, the Canes will look to end their longest home stretch of the season on a high note. “We’re going to continue to compete here,” Staal said. “We’re building an identity, and we’re liking the group that we have and the type of game that we’re playing.”

Recap (Associated Press)

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - Bryan Allen scored his first goal of the season on a breakaway coming out of the penalty box, and the Carolina Hurricanes held on for a 4-3 win over the Nashville Predators on Tuesday night.

Nashville's Gabriel Bourque scored less than a minute later - at 2:16 of the third period - to cut Carolina's lead to 4-3 but the Predators couldn't tie it.

Eric Staal and Tim Brent scored power-plays goals in the second period, and Jamie McBain had Carolina's first goal earlier in the frame.

Craig Smith and Colin Wilson also scored for Nashville, which had its two-game winning streak snapped. The Predators, who won't play again until Saturday at Florida, lost in regulation for just the sixth time in regulation since Dec. 28.

Carolina outshot the Predators 33-29, keeping Nashville goalie Anders Lindback busy. Hurricanes counterpart Cam Ward returned to the lineup after missing three games because of injury. Ward made 26 saves to earn his first win against the Predators.

The Hurricanes broke a six-game losing streak to Nashville, including a 5-2 road defeat on Jan. 7 in which they gave up four power-play goals.

Carolina went 2 for 5 on the power play in this matchup, ending an eight-game stretch in which the Predators didn't allow a man-advantage goal.

NOTES: Staal had a goal and two assists to extend his point streak to nine games. ... Carolina broke a string of back-to-back shootout losses. ... Eight of Smith's 12 goals have been scored on the road. ... Bourque has points in three straight games, one goal and three assists.

scoring summary
1st Period
02:42
NSH
Craig Smith (12) Wrist shot - ASST: Matt Halischuk (10), Gabriel Bourque (6)
1 - 0 NSH
2nd Period
05:17
CAR
Jamie McBain (7) Slapshot - ASST: Anthony Stewart (10)
1 - 1 Tie
12:31
NSH
Colin Wilson (15) Backhand shot - ASST: NONE
2 - 1 NSH
13:04
CAR
PPG - Eric Staal (19) Backhand shot - ASST: Jeff Skinner (17), Jussi Jokinen (24)
2 - 2 Tie
17:24
CAR
PPG - Tim Brent (9) Backhand shot - ASST: Jeff Skinner (18), Eric Staal (34)
3 - 2 CAR
3rd Period
01:28
CAR
Bryan Allen (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Eric Staal (35)
4 - 2 CAR
02:18
NSH
Gabriel Bourque (4) Wrist shot - ASST: Jordin Tootoo (23), David Legwand (26)
4 - 3 CAR
penalty summary
1st Period
09:16
NSH
Jack Hillen  Holding the stick against  Jeff Skinner
19:00
NSH
David Legwand  Hi-sticking against  Justin Faulk
2nd Period
00:55
NSH
Colin Wilson  Too many men/ice - bench
12:52
NSH
Andrei Kostitsyn  Hooking against  Justin Faulk
17:13
NSH
Shea Weber  Hooking against  Drayson Bowman
19:21
CAR
Bryan Allen  Slashing against  Craig Smith
3rd Period
08:50
NSH
Mike Fisher  Hooking against  Tim Brent
goalie stats
Anders Lindback
Anders Lindback
2-7-0
SA: 33TOI: 58:48
Saves: 29EV: 18 - 20
PIM: 0PP: 11 - 13
SV%: .879SH: 0 - 0
Cam Ward
Cam Ward
22-18-10
SA: 29TOI: 60:00
Saves: 26EV: 23 - 26
PIM: 0PP: 3 - 3
SV%: .897SH: 0 - 0