Eric Staal also had two goals for the Hurricanes, Jiri Tlutsy scored his 10th in 11 games, and Alexander Semin had three assists.
Carolina moved into sole possession of first place in the Southeast Division with its first win over a division opponent. The Hurricanes had been 0-5 against Southeast foes and 10-3-1 against the rest of the Eastern Conference.
Cam Ward made 22 saves for the Hurricanes, who won their second straight at home. Carolina had lost six of seven against the Panthers.
Yeah, it was a pretty special moment for me. Today was my Dad's [55th] birthday. I have a lot of family in town, so it was a special moment for me to score my first one today. A win definitely would have capped it off, but you can't have everything.
— Sabres rookie Jack Eichel after scoring a goal in his National Hockey League debut
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