Canes' skid continues at hands of Penguins, 5-3
Posted April 9, 2013
Raleigh, N.C. — FINAL: Pittsburgh 5, Canes 3
Two Pittsburgh goals 13 seconds apart in the third period helped lift the Penguins to a 5-3 win over the Carolina Hurricanes Tuesday. The loss was the 13th in the last 14 games for Carolina.
9:58 3rd: Pittsburgh 4, Canes 3
Pittsburgh scored twice in 13 seconds and turned a goal deficit into a goal lead midway through the 3rd period.
18:00 3rd: Canes 3, Pittsburgh 2
The Canes regained the lead on a Riley Nash goal after Chad LaRose and Tuomo Ruutu did the dirty work
End of 2: Canes 2, Pittsburgh 2
A scoreless second period means the Canes and Penguins will open the final frame tied at two.
The game has been very balanced through 40 minutes and the shots on goal are reflective as Pittsburgh holds a 19-18 edge headed to the 3rd.
End of 1: Canes 2, Pittsburgh 2
For the first time all season, the Hurricanes have two goals by defensemen in the same game and they are tied with Pittsburgh at the end of one, 2-2.
4:26 1st: Canes 2, Pittsburgh 2
Bobby Sanguinetti became the second Canes defenseman to score tonight as he delivered on a faceoff win by Eric Staal in the offensive zone.
6:11 1st: Pittsburgh 2, Canes 1
Brendan Morrow skated through the Canes defense, making a phenomenal individual effort, and was rewarded with the go-ahead goal late in the first period.
Former Cane Jussi Jokinen got the primary assist on the play and Pascal DuPuis recorded the secondary for his second point tonight.
14:22 1st: Canes 1, Pittsburgh 1
The Penguins answered a Joe Corvo goal with one by Robert Bortuzzo and the Canes are tied with Pittsburgh at 1 early in the first period.
Corvo's goal was his fifth of the season and came on a 4-on-3 power play assisted by Jordan Staal.
For Bortuzzo, it was his second of the year and assisted by Pascual DuPuis and former Cane Craig Adams.
20:00 1st: Canes vs. Pittsburgh
Justin Peters will start in net for Carolina tonight and Justin Faulk has been activated from IR and is expected to play. On the reverse, Patrick Dwyer will be a scratch against the Penguins with a lower body injury.
Marc Andre-Fleury (19-6) will start in net for Pittsburgh.
Losers of five straight games, the Carolina Hurricanes return to PNC Arena Tuesday evening for a matchup with the Eastern Conference-leading Pittsburgh Penguins.
Although the playoffs are still a mathematical possibility, the Hurricanes are currently tied for 13th in the East and are eight points out of a postseason spot with 10 games left in the lockout-shortened regular season. NHL standings
Those grim playoff hopes took another shot Monday, as the Canes visited Boston and were dealt a 6-2 loss by the Bruins. The Bruins scored three times in the first and led 5-0 after 40 minutes before cruising to victory in the third.
FOX Sports Carolinas play-by-play announcer John Forslund told Mike Maniscalco and Mark Thomas Tuesday morning that the Canes, who are 1-11-1 in their last 13 games, have become a bit of a broken record in the last month.
"It's getting hard to explain, because it's almost identical go to game," Forslund said. "The defense has to help the goaltenders for the Hurricanes, because we're seeing a lot of missed coverage, a lot of things that are not acceptable. It's easy to pin Monday's loss on goaltending, but it was a little more than that."
Patrick Dwyer and Drayson Bowman each scored for the Hurricanes, who saw starting goaltender Justin Peters pulled eight minutes in after giving up two goals on four shots. Dan Ellis gave up four goals on 32 shots the rest of the way.
"We have to be better in sticking with plays," said Carolina forward Jeff Skinner. "Things just haven't gone our way the past two games because we're getting a lot of shots on net, but not getting it in."
The Hurricanes defense will get a boost Tuesday as Justin Faulk is slated to return after being on injured reserve for the last nine games. Faulk suffered a second-degree MCL sprain March 19 against Florida. With Faulk's return, Brett Bellemore has been reassigned to the Charlotte Checkers of the American Hockey League, the Hurricanes announced.
The Hurricanes are 0-7-0 at home since picking up their last win at PNC Arena against New Jersey on March 9. Carolina is just 7-12-0 as the host this season.
Forslund said the team is continuing to work hard despite the rough stretch of play, but admitted that pride might be the main motivator for the team in the final three weeks of the season.
"These conditions are extremely trying for everybody," he said. "These guys are working hard. They are going to have to come through and deliver in the games that remain. You are working on a culture. You are working with players who are struggling under pressure, young players. They are going to play for pride and try to stay mathematically in the hunt."
A win over Pittsburgh, a team that ripped off 15 straight wins in March, would go a long way to doing just that. Carolina won the only meeting between the teams in 2013, posting a 4-1 win over the Penguins in PNC Arena on Feb. 28. Pittsburgh has lost three of its last four games in Raleigh.
Pittsburgh last played on Friday when it beat the visiting New York Rangers in a shootout to salvage the finale of a home-and-home series. The Penguins then became the first Eastern Conference team to clinch a playoff spot after New Jersey lost an overtime decision to Buffalo on Sunday.
With the playoff spot secured it shouldn't be too long before Pittsburgh is wrapping up its first division title since 2007-08. The Pens are 16 points ahead of the Rangers and Islanders for the division lead with nine games left.
Pittsburgh is also three points ahead of Montreal for the top spot in the East, but the Canadiens, who play Washington on Tuesday, have a game in hand over the Pens.
Jussi Jokinen scored the lone goal in the shootout to help the Pens edge the Rangers at CONSOL Energy Center. Jokinen beat Henrik Lundqvist with a trademark wrister while skating from right to left across the slot in the first round, and though two more of his new teammates failed to score, Marc- Andre Fleury turned away all three New York chances.
"I think that's my No. 1 move," Jokinen said. "I've had lots of shootouts in my career but that's the first time against Lundqvist. I just decided to try that one and I got off a pretty good shot."
Jokinen also provided the sole regulation tally for the Penguins in his first game with the club. The Finnish forward was acquired from Carolina on Wednesday, joining Jarome Iginla, Brenden Morrow, and Douglas Murray as recent Penguins' trade acquisitions.
The Penguins, who are still without forward Sidney Crosby and defensemen Kris Letang and Paul Martin, saw winger James Neal join the ranks of the injured on Friday. Neal suffered a concussion after taking an elbow to the head from Rangers defenseman Michael Del Zotto and will be sidelined indefinitely.
The group of Crosby, Neal, Letang, and Martin represents four of Pittsburgh's top seven scorers this season.