Yep, you read the headline right. YOUR Carolina Hurricanes defeated the team with the NHL’s best record — the Columbus Blue Jackets — 5-3 at PNC Arena Tuesday night. This was a major victory for the #Redvolution, bringing us within 3 points of the final Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference.
Cliff Notes: Your RCS team of Fitz and myself were there in person to bring you the story. The first period was lackluster and forgettable. The ‘Canes seemed to match the energy of the solemn home crowd and started out choppy. Former Boston College great Cam Atkinson put the Ohioans on the board first after sneaking this one by Cam Ward.
Fortunately, things got better in the second. The Carolina offense came alive and scored three goals from Jeff Skinner, Derek Ryan and Brock McGinn, respectively. Unfortunately, Columbus found a way to tie it up heading into the deciding third.
Carolina fended off a bunch of quality Jackets looks throughout the final frame. Jordan Staal put the good guys ahead for good with this tip off a Elias Lindholm shot:
Victor Rask provided some insurance with an empty netter late in the period.
Storm Rating: Category 3. But we beat the best team in the league! Yeah, but there were a lot of turnovers and general sloppiness throughout the game we need to clean up, especially if we’re going to play these guys two more times in the next 10 days.
Not discounting this win at all though — handing C-bus just its 8th regulation loss of the year is a massive boost.
‘Cane of the Game: Jeff Skinner – 3 big points in this one.
What’s Next: The win, combined with another Flyers loss, puts us within striking distance of the playoffs. We also jumped Florida and Toronto in the process. We’re now 19-15-7 overall for those keeping score at home.
Back-to-back home games against Buffalo and the Islanders are next on the docket. It would be nice to get at least 3 points out of those two before next week’s rematch against the Blue Jackets.
Photo Credit: Gregg Forwerck, Carolina Hurricanes.