OTTAWA - The Carolina Hurricanes and Ottawa Senators begin a home-and-home set in Canada's capital city on Saturday before rematching Monday in Raleigh.
The Hurricanes are looking to get back on track after dropping three straight divisional games. The Canes put 47 shots on Henrik Lundqvist but fell to the New York Rangers, 4-2, at home on Thursday.
Doing it Right
The Hurricanes were satisfied with nearly everything save the result from Thursday night. They controlled possession. They dominated shot attempts and shots on goal. The difference? Lundqvist.
"I think we were the better team from start to finish, and their goalie was great. That happens," head coach Rod Brind'Amour said after the game. "In 82 games, your goalie steals one here and there. That's what happened."
"It definitely sucks to lose like that, but that's hockey," Jaccob Slavin said.
The Canes are confident that if they play like that night in and night out, they will be on the right side of the final result more often than not.
"As long as you believe that's the way we need to play, then you're going to be fine. What you don't want to have is guys doing their own thing, thinking that's the way it's going to get done. That's what we have to guard against right now, thinking we have to do something different," Brind'Amour said. "That's the way it should look. The results will come if we play like that."
Luostarinen Solid in Debut
Before Eetu Luostarinen made his NHL debut with the Hurricanes on Thursday, Brind'Amour laid out his expectations for the 21-year-old Finn.
"I want him to play his game. If there's a play to be made, make it. If not, just make sure he's doing it right," he said. "I'm not hoping he gets three goals or anything. Just handle himself out there and be competitive."
Luostarinen took the customary solo lap at the start of warm-ups, firing two pucks at the net before Petr Mrazek led the Canes onto the ice. The Canes' second-round pick from the 2017 NHL Draft was noticeable early and drew a penalty in the first period when he kept his feet moving behind the net and was tripped up by Marc Staal. Luostarinen was 4-for-7 in the faceoff circle and recorded two shots and two hits in 9:21 of ice time.
"He doesn't really fit the fourth line role necessarily, but how we want to do things is guys who are earning it down there get a shot," Brind'Amour said.
Erik Haula remains day-to-day with a knee injury.
The Senators have won two of their last three games and are coming off a 3-2 overtime victory over the Los Angeles Kings. Ottawa is 5-9-1 on the season and 4-4-0 at home. Connor Brown is the Sens' leading scorer with 12 points and a team-high 10 assists through 15 games. Jean-Gabriel Pageau, who scored the overtime winner against Los Angeles on Thursday, paces the team with seven goals.
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