The Carolina Hurricanes have been on an absolute tear over the past couple of weeks. They have won four of their last five games, including two on the road. The Canes have been going through a tour of Canada over the last three games. The road trip started in Edmonton on Tuesday with a win over the Oilers. They would then go to Vancouver, where they had a heartbreaking 0-1 loss in overtime. On Saturday, the Canes took on the Calgary Flames and had a commanding road win. The Canes sit in third place in the Metropolitan Division. Let’s look at the keys to their success so far.
The Canes’ Power Play is Powerful
The Hurricanes have had one of the most powerful power plays so far this season. Overall they rank sixth in the NHL. They have had 23 total Power Play goals so far in 2019. Not to mention the Canes also are sixth in the league when it comes to Power Player percentage. They stand with a PP% of 22.77%. Watching this team in action has been fun to watch. It definitely gives your team an edge when you have nearly a 25% chance of your Power Plays turning into goals. Who has been helping the team the most in this area? Andrei Svechnikov and Sebastian Aho have both been phenomenal. Svechnikov has a total of five PP goals on the season and Aho has four. In order to be a playoff team and be taken seriously, the Canes need to continue to take advantage of the other team being a man down.
The Canes’ Penalty Kill has Been Rock Solid
While the Power Play has been great for the Hurricanes, the Penalty Kill has been even better. The Canes currently rank second in the league with a PK% of 85.96%. They stand just behind the San Jose Sharks, who sit with 87.80% success rate on kills. This has been a huge part of their success. The skill of the special teams along with the skill of both of their goalies has been a huge help to the team’s overall success. As a unit, the team is a pest to other teams’ power plays. They get their sticks, skates, legs, and whatever it takes to block a shot in order to make life hard on attacking teams. Not only can the Canes dominate when their team is up a man, but they can also dominate when they are down as well. The Canes rank top five in the NHL in shorthanded goals.
It’s the Svech Show
The Canes have been playing well on all sides of the puck. Defensively they have been great, offensively they have had hardly any issues scoring, and on special teams, they have been near the top of the NHL. Their best player so far this season has definitely been Svechnikov. He has scored 13 goals with 21 assists so far this season. He has had some very impressive games so far this season. It has been really awesome to see this kid coming into his own in his second season. He is up for an All-Star vote this season, and he is only 19. This is a very young Hurricanes team but they have so much potential, and they don’t seem to be close to going away anytime soon.
What’s Coming up for the Canes?
The Canes have been and will continue to be on the road a lot for the rest of this month. They will wrap up their Canadian tour on Tuesday in Winnipeg and then wrap up their long road trip in Colorado on Thursday. They then will come home for a game against the Florida Panthers on the 21st of December and then go back to Canada to play Toronto before Christmas. Although these next few games do not have anyone from the Metropolitan division in them, these are still Eastern Conference games. It is important to keep playing well in such a highly contested Conference.
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