Jan 24, 2011
The Carolina Hurricanes will try to continue their recent track record of success against Toronto when they host the Maple Leafs Monday at RBC Center.
The Hurricanes posted a 4-3 victory in Toronto on Dec. 28, giving them four straight wins in this series. Carolina has also taken five of six and eight of 10 overall from the Leafs, who have dropped four out of six in Raleigh.
Carolina captain Eric Staal recorded a pair of goals in the December meeting and the Thunder Bay, Ontario, native is a big reason the 'Canes have gotten the better of the Leafs in recent years. He has 12 goals and 26 points in 23 career games against Toronto.
The Hurricanes have lost three of their last four games, however, and are coming off Saturday's close regulation loss in Pittsburgh. Pascal Dupuis' short-handed goal proved to be the game-winner, as the Penguins held on to beat Carolina, 3-2, at CONSOL Energy Center.
Dupuis had given the Penguins a 3-0 lead at the 7:28 mark of the third period, but the Hurricanes got goals from Sergei Samsonov and Staal. Samsonov spoiled Marc-Andre Fleury's shutout bid at 15:35, then Staal pumped in a rebound of a Joe Corvo shot to draw Carolina within one with 57.8 seconds remaining and goaltender Cam Ward on the bench.
The Hurricanes pulled Ward again, but couldn't net the equalizer. Ward stopped 28 shots for Carolina, which has dropped four of six.
"We didn't get enough (pucks) to the net and I thought we missed the net on some of our better opportunities," said Hurricanes head coach Paul Maurice.
Carolina has won four of its last five home games and is 12-8-2 as the host this season.
Toronto was victimized by Alex Ovechkin in its most recent loss on Saturday, as the Capitals superstar recorded a hat trick in Washington's 4-1 win at Air Canada Centre.
Tim Brent posted the lone goal for Toronto, which has lost four of its last five and has surrendered 20 goals over that span. Jean-Sebastien Giguere surrendered three goals on 30 shots on Saturday.
Toronto is playing the first of two straight as the guest tonight and will try to avoid a third straight road loss. The Maple Leafs are 9-12-1 away from home on the year.