The 2013 season mercifully came to a close for the Hurricanes last night and they ended things in painful fashion by getting blown out 8-3 by the Pittsburgh Penguins. It's somewhat of an appropriate ending for what has been an excruciating year for the Canes but at the very least, it clinched them a spot in the top-five of the NHL Entry Draft which they will hopefully put to good use this June. As bad as the final score was of last night's game, it's kind of hard for me to get hung up on the results because Carolina iced a roster that was in shambles. They actually dressed 18 skaters tonight but two of them played a combined nine seconds, so the team was predictably worn out by the third period, where they surrendered five goals.
Not only that, but I feel like Muller approached this game like a pre-season contest because we saw line combinations that we will likely never see again for a long time. Kevin Westgarth took a few shifts with the first line and scored his first two goals of the season on top of that, Jared Staal played top-six minutes in only his second NHL game while Jeff Skinner continued to center the third line with grinders on his wings. Jamie McBain & Marc-Andre Bergeron also played top-four minutes on defense and spent some of their ice time against Pittsburgh's top-six. It's highly doubtful that the Hurricanes will come out with this kind of look ever again, so there's really no point in freaking out over them getting blown out in basically a meaningless game. The only thing that happened last night which we will undoubtedly see again is Justin Faulk playing over 29 minutes.
I really don't have much to say about this game, so I'll just leave you guys with the numbers and move on with the off-season.no comments