After failing to get a win in Boston in games 1 and 2, the Carolina Hurricanes got back on their home ice in Carolina for game 3 looking to get back into the series. Despite their very best efforts and easily their best game of the series, the Hurricanes lost and are now facing a 3-0 deficit in the series. According to NHL.com, nearly 200 teams have trailed 3-0 in the history of the NHL, and only four of teams were able to come back and win the series. Needless to say, the Hurricanes have the odds stacked against them.
The Hurricanes came out as the aggressors in the first period and caught Boston off guard. They were constantly on power plays because Boston was called for six penalties in the first period alone. The entire first period was played in Carolina’s offensive zone and they had all the momentum. They were also being very physical in the first period and it was getting under the skin of the Bruins. Once again, Tuukka Rask stepped up when his team needed him and tallied 20 saves in the period and kept the score even at zero a piece going into the first intermission.
The Bruins came out of the locker room knowing that they were not going survive another period like the first. They started putting pucks on net and upping their level of physicality. The entire game was very chippy between these teams but the refs did a great job of keeping it contained. The Bruins effort to start the second period was quickly rewarded as Chris Wagner scored just 1:21 into the second period off a great pass from Nordstrom across the face of the goalie. The Bruins looked a little less tense after the first goal and started playing a little more freely. Roughly five minutes after Wagner’s goal, Brad Marchand scored on a power play to make it 2-0. This was a special goal for Marchand because this game marked his 100th career playoff game with the Bruins, making him the 12th player in franchise history to reach the century mark. It looked like we were going to see another blowout but Calvin de Haan got one back for Carolina with a powerful shot that broke through a late block from Tuukka Rask. The second period ended with the Bruins ahead 2-1.
The third period was as intense as any period we’ve seen in this series. The Hurricanes knew how important it was for them to avoid going down 3-0 in the series and the Bruins were trying their best to close this one out to bring them one step closer to advancing to the Stanley Cup. The crowd was doing their very best to get the Hurricanes back in it and you could tell how bad both teams wanted to win this game. There was 15:45 left in the game when the Bruins found the back of the net for the third time in the game, but the goal was disallowed because of an interference call that could have gone either way. Corey Krug fired a slap shot at the net when Carolina’s goalie, Curtis McElhinney approached the edge of the crease. As he was approaching the crease, Jake DeBrusk was trying to set a screen for the shot and collided with McElhinney. It was ruled no goal after review but the Bruins were not happy with the call. Despite some good chances from both teams, the rest of the third period remained scoreless and the Bruins won the game 2-1. The Hurricanes are on the wrong end of a 3-0 series record and may be just playing now to avoid a sweep.