NHL Game of the Week: New York Rangers vs. Carolina Hurricanes
Two of the top teams in the Metropolitan Division will face off in PNC Arena as the New York Rangers take a trip to face off against the Carolina Hurricanes.
Eight points separate these squads from first and third in the division, and both squads are loaded with premier talent.
These two teams know each other quite well, as the Rangers vanquished the Hurricanes in seven games in last year's Eastern Conference Semifinals.
With the All-Star break out of the way, it’s a sprint to the finish line, and both of these franchises will be looking to make a strong push.
Carolina Hurricanes (34-9-8, 1st in Metro)
The Hurricanes were the hottest team in the league going into the All-Star weekend, winning seven straight games and going 9-0-1 in their last ten.
Leading that charge for Carolina has been superstar center Sebastian Aho. The Finnish phenom has 23 goals on the year, 10 of which have come in the last six games.
Alongside Aho is Martin Necas, who’s breakout season has come as a pleasant surprise for Raleighwood. Necas leads the team with 47 points, and is one of the fastest skaters in the league.
With depth scoring throughout the lineup with guys like Jordan Martinook and Stefan Noesen stepping up, along with one of the best blue lines in the NHL headlined by Jaccob Slavin and Brent Burns, it’s easy to see why Carolina is at the top of the division.
Backstopping the red and black has been a three-headed tandem of Frederick Andersen, Antti Raanta and Pyotr Kochetkov.
Kochetkov has been back and forth between the AHL and NHL, but Andersen and Raanta have done plenty between the pipes to backstop the team to wins.
The key for Carolina is going to be coming out of the break hot. The Hurricanes are a team that notoriously struggles after the All-Star break, and they haven’t played in over a week coming into this matchup.
Nonetheless, this matchup proves to be one that every hockey fan should keep their eye on.
New York Rangers (29-14-8, 3rd in Metro)
The Rangers bounced back hard after the All-Star break in an exciting game in Madison Square Garden against the Calgary Flames.
After monster hits by Jacob Trouba all game, Alexis Lafreniere scored the game-winning goal in overtime to carry the Rangers to a 5-4 victory.
They also defeated the Vancouver Canucks 4-3 with Fil Chytil’s fifth consecutive goal in a game.
The Rangers acquired a monster this week in a trade that brought Vladimir Tarasenko and Niko Mikkola to New York in exchange for Sammy Blais, Hunter Skinner, a 2023 1st-round pick and 2024 4th-round pick.
Tarasenko already scored in Feb. 10’s game against the Seattle Kraken and will most likely continue playing on the first line with Mika Zibanejad and Artemi Panarin.
This is the most potent Rangers lineup since their Stanley Cup run in 2014. The first line is powerful, and the Kid Line (Lafreniere-Kakko-Chytil) has 24 combined points in their last 10 games.
Igor Shesterkin is looking to continue dominance in the goal, and Jaroslav Halak has proven to be a reliable backup.
New York needs to continue playing physical hockey and be ready to defend against the leader in the Metro division.
Joshua Bartosik is a second-year student majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Adrianna Gallucci is a first-year student majoring in journalism. To contact her, please email email@example.com.
About the Contributors
Second Year /
Josh Bartosik is a Second Year student from Raleigh, North Carolina majoring in broadcast journalism. He is in his second year at CommRadio. Josh has been featured on several articles and podcasts for CommRadio ranging across all sports and topics. Josh had the incredible opportunity to broadcast the Women’s Frozen Four Semifinal matchups at University Park last winter and the EIVA Men’s Tournament Semifinal last spring along with several other broadcasts. Josh has also been named as a co-host for the Sin Bin and Phone Booth, two talk shows featured at CommRadio. Josh’s dream career is to be a play by play broadcaster or journalist for the NHL, NFL, or College Football.