Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Canes Blanked by Sabres

Though tonight was the Carolina Hurricanes’ second preseason game, it was still the first game action for many in the team’s lineup tonight. Carolina was ultimately shut out 2-0 by the Buffalo Sabres, who iced a rather experienced roster.

-- The unfortunate story of the night was the Canes losing Jordan Staal, who was seen on crutches, late in the third period to a lower-body injury. Staal got tangled up with Josh Gorges and went down in a lot of pain. He had to be helped off the ice, and Canes head coach Bill Peters had no further update on Staal after the game. "I'm concerned, for sure," he said.

Staal was one of just two Hurricanes (the other being Ron Hainsey) who played in all 82 regular-season games in 2013-14. He also played in all 48 games during the shortened season in 2012-13.

-- Similar to Cam Ward in the preseason opener, Anton Khudobin played half of tonight’s game, 30:08 to be exact. He stopped all nine shots he faced, including seven in the first period and a bit of a barrage to open the game.

Drew MacIntyre, who is slated to start Wednesday night in New York, made 10 saves on 12 shots.

-- A couple of bad breaks changed the tide of the game in the second period. After being outshot in the first period, the Canes had the Sabres on their heels for the first half of the middle frame. Then, Drew Stafford scored on a breakaway and Tyler Ennis threw a puck into the slot that bounced off Jordan Staal and in. Despite pulling ahead in the shot count after 40 minutes, the Canes headed to the locker room down a pair.

-- John-Michael Liles took a puck to what looked to be the face in the first period, but he returned to the ice just minutes after skating off to the room. Justin Shugg was slow to get up after a hit in the neutral zone, but he also returned a short while later.

Assistant coach Rod Brind’Amour wasn’t so lucky. He took a puck to the head during warm-ups and required a few stitches. But, he’s a hockey player, and he was behind the bench for the game.

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