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Recap: Canes Fall to Leafs in Overtime

by Michael Smith @MSmithCanes /

Analysis from Raleigh

→ The rubber match of the season series between the Carolina Hurricanes and Toronto Maple Leafs required more than 60 minutes to settle. The Hurricanes earned a point but fell to the Maple Leafs, 3-2, in overtime. Victor Rask and Teuvo Teravainen tallied for Carolina, while Morgan Rielly scored the game-winner in 3-on-3 action.

"It was a good game. We didn't find a way to get the two points, but we had a couple chances 3-on-3," Jordan Staal said. "There were a lot of good things throughout that game."

"I thought there were a lot of positives in our team game, and I thought some individuals played outstanding," head coach Bill Peters said. "There was lots to like. A little more finish in and around the net is what we're needing and lacking right now."

Video: CAR Recap: Rask, Teravainen score in OT loss to Leafs

→ Nearly midway through the five-minute overtime period, Rielly cut towards the middle of the ice from the far boards and beat Cam Ward on a quick shot to lift the Leafs to victory.

After the game, Rask reflected on the goal.

"Had a couple chances there, but I couldn't put it in the net. Then my guy scored, so it's my bad," he said.

Peters, though, praised Rask for his game.

"Victor Rask skated very well, and he was 8-for-10 on draws. I thought that line was dangerous. Skinner-Rask-Lindholm I really liked," Peters said. "I hope he (Rask) plays like that again. … I thought he played very well."

→ The Hurricanes got off to a quick start tonight, out-shooting Toronto 7-0 in the first six-and-a-half minutes of the game. Then, the Canes struck first where it counts. Rask beat Frederik Andersen, a former seventh-round pick of the Hurricanes, short side high from a tough angle to open the scoring.

"I had the D-man screening the goalie, so I shot it between his legs and luckily it went in," Rask said.

"Credit to the guys for being ready to start on time," Peters said. "They did a good job there."

Just 53 seconds later, Toronto answered to tie the game, via rookie Mitch Marner's 17th goal of the season.

Video: Hear from Slavin and Peters postgame

→ A similar script played out on the scoresheet in the second period. Early on carry-over power play time from the first, Teuvo Teravainen's point shot found twine after Leafs' defenseman Morgan Rielly redirected the puck while trying to defend Staal in the slot.

Seven minutes later, Toronto again tied the game, this time off the stick of James van Riemsdyk.

"I thought it was a good hockey game," Peters said. "There was some real good pace and a lot of skill both ways."

→ The Hurricanes went down a forward very early into tonight's contest. On his first shift of his second career game, Valentin Zykov absorbed a big hit from Roman Polak along the near boards. It was a dangerous play, as Zykov was sent hurdling face-first into the boards. No call was made on the play, but Zykov did not return to the game with what was deemed an upper-body injury.

"It didn't look good. It looked like it was a hard hit. He went in awkwardly," Peters said. "It's a tough one, a tough play for the kid. First shift for Z in the game coming off a pretty exciting game for him."

→ The Hurricanes will face off with the New York Islanders in a back-to-back, home-and-home set on Monday and Tuesday.

"We'll just keep working and taking advantage of what we have to do off the ice to help us keep our legs and keep us going," Staal said. "It's a lot of hockey, but it's been good, and we've been working hard."

"I thought they were competitive tonight, and I think they're going to be competitive each and every night. They've got a lot to prove, these guys," Peters said. "It's the best time of year to make an assessment on a player because teams are desperate for points, absolutely desperate and hungry big time. So if you can play at this time of year, then you're an NHL player. If you fall off and struggle at the most important time of the year when the intensity of the games is very high, we have to be aware of that and make decisions on that."

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