After going ahead 2-0 in the series against the Nashville Predators, the Carolina Hurricanes found themselves on the losing end of back to back overtime heartbreaks. Things were different Tuesday night as the bounce of the puck finally went in favor of the Hurricanes as they defeated the Predators 3-2 in overtime Tuesday evening inside PNC Arena.
Carolina once again put themselves in catch-up mode in the first period as Nashville cashed in on a scoring chance at the 11:44 mark from Yakov Trenin. The Predators’ lead would last just three minutes as Martin Necas tied the game at 1-1 with his power play goal at the 14:21 mark with a missile from the right circle. Neither team could break the tie during the first period, leaving the score at one all at the first break.
The recurring theme of slow starts in periods continued as Trenin put Nashville back ahead 2-1 with his second goal of the evening just 53 seconds into the second stanza. Both teams went scoreless the remaining 19 minutes as both goalies continued their outstanding play that’s been on display the entire series. The Hurricanes had a would-be tying goal waved off with around six minutes left as Jordan Staal’s tip in goal was reversed after a challenge from Nashville, adding to some of the more controversial officiating this series.
With just over 12 minutes gone by in the third period and the Hurricanes looking on their way to a sure deficit heading back to Nashville, Necas scored his second goal on a wrap around sending the PNC Arena crowd into a frenzy. Both teams produced chances to go ahead in regulation, but were unsuccessful sending the game into overtime for the third straight contest.
The wait wouldn’t be long this time as Staal willed his way in front of the net in a 4 on 4 situation, batting the puck into the back of the net just 2:03 in the extra period giving the Canes the 3-2 victory and a 3-2 series lead.
1st: Martin Necas – 2 Goals
2nd: Jordan Staal – 1 Goal (Game winner)
3rd: Alex Nedeljkovic – 23 Saves
Next Up: Game 6 – Thursday, May 27 – 9:30 PM – NBCSN