Alex Nedeljkovic dominated between the pipes, stopping all 32 shots he faced – leading the Carolina Hurricanes to a 3-0 lead over the Nashville Predators Wednesday night inside PNC Arena. The shutout was the first playoff shutout for Nedeljkovic. With the win, Carolina now holds a 2-0 lead over Nashville in the first round series.
Things would be chippy from the drop of the puck, with some activity being slightly one-sided getting the refs involved in the game early. The penalty box was busy as the Hurricanes found themselves on the penalty kill seven times, going a successful 7 for 7 on the night for the special teams unit.
Forward Sebastain Aho gave a preview that tonight would be a success, along with Petey Pablo ringing the siren to open the contest as he cashed in on a power play goal at the 8:03 mark – putting the Canes ahead 1-0 for a unit that has completely struggled their last few games. The assists were credited to Andrei Svechnikov and Dougie Hamilton. The tally would be the lone score for the rest of the first period.
After both teams battled through a scoreless second period and more physical play, looking to ice the game, Aho again found the back of the net – this time with an ENG with 52.1 remaining in the game sending the already loud and rowdy PNC Arena crowd to another level. Less than 30 seconds later, Warren Foegle circled the net, throwing the puck in front of the Nashville goal, getting a bounce and putting the puck back in the net for the final goal – sending the Canes to a 3-0 victory and 2-0 series lead heading to Nashville for the weekend.
Next up: Game 3 – Friday, May 21. 7:00 PM. USA Network
1st Star – Alex Nedelijkovic – 32 saves
2nd Star – Sebastian Aho – Two goals
3rd Star – Brady Skjei – Four hits
Jake Gardiner – Stepped in the lineup for injured Jaccob Slavin to collect five hits and three blocked shots.
- Nedelijkovic became the second rookie goaltender in Hurricanes history to record a postseason shutout. (Cam Ward -2006)
- Carolina improves to 11-1-2 in their black jerseys on the season.
- Head coach Rod Brind’Amour coached his 25th career playoff game which puts him second on the franchise all time list in just his third season at the helm.