4.20.24 RECAP

RALEIGH, NC. - Carolina Hurricanes netminder Frederik Andersen stopped 34 out of 35 shots faced on Saturday, playing difference-maker in a series-opening 3-1 win over the New York Islanders.

Recap: Islanders at Hurricanes 4.20.24

Deadline Acquisitions Paying Dividends Early...

Kicking off a sixth consecutive trip to the postseason, the Canes wasted little time jumping on the Islanders.

After Islanders Captain Anders Lee was sent to the box just over a minute in, Evengy Kuznetsov took advantage 13 seconds later.

Using a Stefan Noesen screen in front, the Canes were up only 1:35 following the opening puck drop.

Putting the home side in a good position to start the evening, New York pushed back with a heavy response though.

Showing the style of play that made them 8-0-1 in their last nine regular season games, they were then able to tie it up before the contest could reach the midway point of the first period.

After Carolina had trouble getting a puck out of their own end, Lee redirected a shot from the point and Kyle MacLean cleaned up the scraps behind Andersen.

Tight Middle Frame...

Moving to the second 1-1, the Islanders kept things trending in their direction when the two sides returned to the ice.

Going on to outshoot Carolina 10-3 during the 20 minutes, there wasn't a lot of room for either side to work with, but New York was the more effective of the two clubs.

Because of that, Andersen had to come up with a few timely stops for his team.

Looking a lot like the game that a lot of people expected going into the series, the score remained tied as the two sides headed to the final period of regulation.

Stef Shines...

In the opening minute of the third, it looked like New York had claimed their first lead of the night.

A shot from the high slot hit the post to the glove side of Andersen, and the Canes' netminder had to come up with a sprawling stop to keep the rebound out.

Going on to be a game-altering save, just moments later, Noesen emerged as the hero.

Some patience at the point from Kuznetsov allowed him to fit a shot through traffic, one initially knocked down by Brady Skjei. From there, #23 was able to locate the loose puck in front of Semyon Varlamov, serving as the game-winner.

Martin Necas would add an empty netter before the final horn, but at the end of 60 minutes, the Canes had secured themselves a 1-0 series lead.

They Said It...

Rod Brind'Amour on the game as a whole...

"We weren't great, that's for sure.  I think it was the perfect example of a team that's been playing playoff hockey for a month and a team that hasn't.  It was like 'whoa'.  We just couldn't get going and then I thought as the game went on we kind of started getting up to speed with how it's going to be."

Brind'Amour continuing on Andersen...

"He's the difference in the game, obviously. He made countless saves tonight that kept us in it."

Evgeny Kuznetsov touching on Andersen's play and the team's first two periods not being up to their standard...

"I think that save he made early in the third was big.  (The first 40 minutes) were unacceptable for us.  We've got to make sure we clean those up because both of our goalies are playing very good hockey and we have to make sure we help them.  We can't make their jobs harder."

Frederik Andersen following his exceptional performance...

"I'm just grateful to be a part of playoff hockey. I think we have a really special team. Everyone's going to be a part of it and do their job as best as possible."

What's Next?

The Canes are scheduled to practice on Sunday and will return to action on Monday for Game 2 at 7:30 p.m. ET.