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game recap

Johnny Gaudreau sends Flames past Hurricanes

Forward has two goals, assist to help Calgary win fourth straight to end road trip

by Kurt Dusterberg / NHL.com Correspondent

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Johnny Gaudreau had two goals and an assist, and Brian Elliott made 34 saves to help the Calgary Flames to a 3-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena on Sunday.

The Flames (33-26-4) won their fourth straight to finish a five-game road trip 4-0-1. Calgary has 70 points and holds the first wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference."

"Our guys were dialed in," Flames coach Glen Gulutzan said. "They wanted to finish off this trip the right way."

The Hurricanes (25-25-8) have lost six of the past seven games (1-5-1).

 

WATCH: All Flames vs. Hurricanes highlights 

 

"We gave the puck away," Hurricanes coach Bill Peters. "I thought the turnovers and the puck management led to a lot of trouble."

Victor Rask broke out of a scoring slump to give the Hurricanes a 1-0 lead at 4:54 of the first period. With Carolina on the power play, Rask took a pass from Jeff Skinner and beat Elliott with a hard wrist shot from the top of the right circle. Rask had gone 15 games without a goal.

Video: CGY@CAR: Rask beats Elliott glove side for the PPG

"I didn't see it," Elliott said. "My defenseman was right in front of me. We kind of beat ourselves on that one."

Micheal Ferland tied it 1-1 at 6:05 of the second period. Gaudreau lifted a backhand pass through the middle of the ice, where Ferland gathered the puck and sent a shot over Eddie Lack's blocker and under the crossbar.

Gaudreau's 12th of the season put the Flames up 2-1 at 14:50. After carrying the puck into the offensive zone, he followed his own shot from the slot with another to the back post.

"I just found a way to get some greasy goals there," said Gaudreau, who has eight points (two goals, six assists) in the past four games. "I know I held the puck a little bit at the blue line on the (first) goal and got a quick shot to the net. It hit a few sticks and found the net."

The 23-year-old forward got his second of the game when he cut from the right-side boards to the slot and scored on a wrist shot from the high slot for a 3-1 lead at 11:04.

Video: CGY@CAR: Gaudreau wrists home his second of the game

"He's made plays when he's needed to," Gulutzan said. "He's feeling very confident now. This is the time you need your big players, coming down the stretch. I thought he was dangerous. He's been real good through this trip for us."

 

Goal of the game

On Gaudreau's first goal, he got the puck back twice. First, his pass was blocked by Noah Hanifin, then his shot was blocked by Brett Pesce. He finished on the forehand.

Video: CGY@CAR: Gaudreau slides puck five-hole on Lack

 

Save of the game

With 4:50 remaining in the second period, Elliott stopped Sebastian Aho cutting from the circle, then got his right pad out to stop Aho on the rebound at the left post.

Video: CGY@CAR: Elliott gets his pad out to stone Aho

 

Highlight of the game

Gaudreau made a backhand pass through the neutral zone and Ferland put away his breakaway chance with a quick release.

Video: CGY@CAR: Ferland nets breakaway on Gaudreau's feed

 

Unsung performance of the game

The Flames were credited with 24 takeaways, keeping the Hurricanes from generating much momentum, particularly in the neutral zone.

 

They said it

"It's great. Keep the confidence up, keep it growing. Especially with how big the last 20 games [will be]. I feel like we're in the same spot we were two seasons ago. You get jacked up to play every single game. You see yourself in a playoff spot, and that's what gets me excited to play in these game. It's been great. Hopefully we keep it going." -- Flames forward Johnny Gaudreau

 

"Would we have started to play properly at that point, if we had gone up two? When we're up one, why don't we start playing properly? Or do the right thing and play properly for 60 minutes and then if it goes into overtime, then play properly for 65 minutes? I don't think we did that today." -- Hurricanes coach Bill Peters

 

Need to know

The Flames were not charged with any giveaways. Calgary is 24-0-1 when leading after two periods. … Carolina has scored one goal or less in five of the past seven games.

 

What's next

Flames: Host the Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday (9 p.m. ET; SN1, FS-W, NHL.TV)

Hurricanes: At the Florida Panthers on Tuesday (7:30 p.m. ET; FS-CR, FS-F, NHL.TV) 

 

Video: Gaudreau and Elliott lift Flames over 'Canes, 3-1

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