CanesLeafs101713

Game 8 By the Numbers: Hurricanes at Maple Leafs

Carolina's 3-2 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs was one of those games that unbelievably frustrating to watch from a fan's perspective. There weren't any stretches where the Canes were outplayed but a couple of mistakes put themselves down 2-0 in the second period and absolutely nothing was going their way through the first 40 minutes of the game or so. Despite having the edge in territorial play and getting through the Leafs defense with relative ease, Carolina could not bury any of their chances and looked a step off when they had an opportunity to get back into the game.

It looked similar to many of their games in the second half of last season where the team seemingly couldn't do anything right and fell apart whenever they were faced with adversity. That is, until the third period when everything started to click for them. All it took was an early power play and a point shot by Ryan Murphy deflecting off Toronto's Dave Bolland and past goaltender Jonathan Bernier to give them some life. After that, Carolina began to take over the game and while they were aided by a couple of bounces, one of which being an incredibly weird goal courtesy of Ron Hainsey, they outplayed Toronto in the third period and edged out another close game.

Again, this was a frustrating game to watch from a fan's standpoint because it looked like the Hurricanes were going to let a good performance go to waste, but this was actually one of their more complete performances of the year. Aside from the win over the Flyers, this was the only game of the year the Hurricanes outplayed their opponent in all three phases, which is nice to see after some ugly performances early in the year. They needed a couple of bounces to go their way but that's just how the game works sometimes.

All in all, I'd say the team's performance in close games this year has been somewhat encouraging, as they would often let games like this slip away from them last season but they're doing a much better job at battling back and being able to earn at least a point even on nights when they don't deserve it. Last night wasn't one of those, but they did find themselves down entering the third period and climbed their way back into it. It would be nice if the Hurricanes didn't put themselves into bad situations to begin with but a team that can rally from behind is never a bad thing.

Fenwick Chart from Extra Skater

A couple of early Toronto power plays derailed a solid start for the Hurricanes and it took them until the second period to regroup. Of course, that's also when the Leafs began to do what they do best and scored on the first two shots of the period. Carolina spent most of that period playing in Toronto's end but could not bury any of their chances and ended up trailing 2-0 when all was said and done. Thankfully, the Hurricanes stuck with their system and it eventually paid off in the third period, as they continued to crush Toronto in the territorial game and get rewarded for it with a couple goals. Two of them came as the result of generous bounces, but Carolina was making Toronto work hard in their own end and played a solid all-around game for the most part.

Scoring Chances

Period Total 5v5 PP 5v3 SH 3v5 4v4 EN
1 4 7 2 6 2 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
2 7 4 7 3 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
3 6 3 5 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
Totals 17 14 14 11 3 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1

Carolina played another lousy first period, although I didn't think they came out flat last night. They just took too many penalties and while they Leafs were blanked on the power play, they had a lot more jump in their game after that. The Hurricanes didn't have their legs for the last 10 minutes of that period and it showed both on the ice and on the chance count. After that, it was mostly smooth sailing for the Hurricanes although those who watched the game will tell you a different story. The Canes had to battle to get this win because Toronto converted on two of their four chances in the second period while it took many tries for Carolina to solve Jonathan Bernier, who played very well outside of the third goal where he made a big mental error. Unfortunately, that mistake ended up costing Toronto the game.

Hurricanes Individual Scoring Chances

# Player 5v5 PP SH
4 Andrej Sekera 18:08 6 3 2:39 2 0 4:06 1 1
7 Ryan Murphy 12:54 2 7 2:50 1 1 0:05 0 0
8 Kevin Westgarth 1:57 0 1 0:00 0 0 0:00 0 0
11 Jordan Staal  12:25 4 2 3:32 2 1 2:53 1 0
12 Eric Staal 19:04 7 6 2:45 2 0 0:11 0 1
14 Nathan Gerbe 12:37 3 2 2:37 1 1 1:36 0 0
15 Tuomo Ruutu 8:40 2 4 2:43 2 0 0:03 0 0
18 Radek Dvorak 11:30 5 1 0:00 0 0 2:58 0 1
19 Jiri Tlusty 12:58 3 2 0:15 0 0 3:08 0 0
20 Riley Nash 13:32 3 2 0:12 0 0 1:37 0 0
21 Drayson Bowman 5:31 3 2 1:36 1 0 0:11 0 0
27 Justin Faulk 17:37 6 3 3:11 1 1 4:22 1 1
28 Alexander Semin 17:49 7 5 2:58 2 0 0:03 0 0
39 Patrick Dwyer 10:29 2 3 0:00 0 0 3:03 1 0
44 Jay Harrison 14:10 2 6 0:00 0 0 0:05 0 0
53 Jeff Skinner  13:24 3 3 2:37 1 1 0:01 0 0
65 Ron Hainsey 15:42 6 2 0:00 0 0 3:41 0 0
73 Brett Bellemore 14:10 6 2 0:00 0 0 3:25 0 0
30 Cam Ward  46:33 14 11 5:35 3 1 7:52 1 1

Best EV Forward: Radek Dvorak +4

Worst EV Forward: Tuomo Ruutu -2

Best EV Defensemen: Ron Hainsey & Brett Bellemore +4

Worst EV Defensemen: Ryan Murphy & Jay Harrison -4

The first line had another solid game and this is with them having to deal with revolving door at left wing for  most of the game. Tuomo Ruutu had a very off performance and was taken off this line in the second period in favor of Jiri Tlusty. Once that happened, this line began to connect a little more and they ended up producing half of the Hurricanes even strength scoring chances, Staal contributing on most of them.The second and third lines also did some nice work and I was very impressed with Skinner, Nash & Dvorak in the third period. These three were able to outwork the Leafs down low and generate a lot of zone time for the Canes while they were trying to protect a lead. These three have come up big in these situations this year, so they'll be very important going forward.

The Hainsey/Bellemore pairing had the best differential, but I thought Faulk was the Hurricanes best overall player last night, mostly forr his great work on the penalty kill. He took away space from Phil Kessel and managed to frustrate Toronto's forwards all night long. Any time you can limit Kessel's line to only three even strength chances in a game, you know you're doing something right.

As for the negative side of things, the Murphy/Harrison pairing got lit up at even strength in terms of scoring chances. Murphy was very good on the power play and scored his first goal, but the defensive issues are still present. Worth keeping an eye on.

Maple Leafs Individual Scoring Chances

# Player 5v5 PP SH
3 Dion Phaneuf 17:36 5 5 4:17 0 1 3:05 0 2
4 Cody Franson 13:34 2 4 4:24 0 1 2:15 0 1
11 Jay McClement 11:00 2 3 0:37 0 0 2:24 0 2
12 Mason Raymond 17:30 5 6 3:59 1 0 3:20 0 1
15 Paul Ranger 15:32 4 4 0:12 0 0 1:47 0 0
19 Joffrey Lupul 16:03 6 4 4:12 1   0:00 0 0
23 Trevor Smith 3:20 0 1 0:00 0 0 0:00 0 0
28 Colton Orr 3:03 0 1 0:00 0 0 0:00 0 0
32 Josh Leivo 11:17 3 3 0:24 0 0 0:00 0 0
36 Carl Gunnarsson 17:00 7 6 0:12 0 0 2:45 0 2
37 Carter Ashton 4:32 1 1 0:00 0 0 0:38 0 0
42 Tyler Bozak 18:14 2 6 3:17 0 1 1:50 0 2
43 Nazem Kadri 15:37 7 4 4:11 1 0 0:21 0 0
44 Morgan Rielly 14:09 2 5 3:29 1 0 0:00 0 0
46 David Broll 11:22 3 4 0:10 0 0 0:00 0 0
51 Jake Gardiner 15:40 2 3 3:10 1 0 1:18 0 1
63 Dave Bolland 10:27 2 3 3:29 0 1 2:37   1
81 Phil Kessel  17:46 2 6 3:17 0 1 0:00 0 0
35 James Reimer 0:32 0 0 0:00 0 0 0:00 0 0
45 Jonathan Bernier  44:56 11 14 7:52 1 1 5:35 0 3

Best EV Forward: Nazem Kadri +3

Worst EV Forwards: Phil Kessel & Tyler Bozak -4

Best EV Defenseman: Carl Gunnarsson +1

Worst EV Defenseman: Morgan Rielly -3

The Hurricanes managed to shut down Kessel's lien but the Leafs second lien did a fine job of generating chances. Both Lupul & Kadri gave the Hurricanes secondary players a lot of problems last night and I can see this being an issue in other road games where Muller can't dictate the matchups. These two didn't play many minutes against Kadri's line but when they did, they were torched at even strength.

Head-to-Head at Five-on-Five

The Leafs elected to power-vs-power last night with Randy Carlyle letting Bozak's line skate most of their minutes against Eric Staal. This didn't result in anything good for the Leafs as Staal & Semin recorded six chances against Bozak's line and ended up outchancing them by four overall. Phaneuf & Gunnarsson did enough to keep the Hurricanes top players in check but they were still able to create a lot of offense and Toronto paid for it in the third period.

You can also see here how good Faulk & Sekera were against Toronto's top-six and how much the Canes third pairing struggled at even strength.

5v5 Zone Entries

Hurricanes

Player # of entries Shots generated Carry-ins Shots generated Dump-ins Shots generated Failed Entries
Sekera 4 1 1 0 3 1 0
Murphy 1 1 0 0 1 1 1
Westgarth 1 1 1 1 0 0 0
J. Staal 8 6 6 5 2 1 0
E. Staal 9 4 5 2 4 2 0
Gerbe 2 3 0 0 2 3 1
Ruutu 0 0 0 0 0 0 2
Dvorak 3 1 2 1 1 0 1
Tlusty 1 1 1 1 0 0 2
Nash 4 3 3 3 1 0 1
Bowman 3 3 1 1 2 2 0
Faulk 5 3 1 1 4 2 0
Semin 1 1 1 1 0 0 1
Dwyer 5 2 1 1 4 1 1
Harrison 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Skinner 9 2 5 2 4 0 1
Hainsey 4 4 0 0 4 4 0
Bellemore 1 1 0 0 1 1 0
Team 61 37 28 19 33 18 11

The Hurricanes had control on about 46% of their 5v5 entries, which has been the standard for them the last couple of games. It's an improvement over the first couple of games, but I'd still like to see them carry the puck in more. Although, playing dump-and-chase didn't exactly hurt the Canes too much last night, which is probably because they were playing against a weak defense corps. The Canes were winning the races to the puck all night along and getting more shots off uncontrolled entries. This strategy works against Philly & Toronto but not against stronger teams so I'm hoping it doesn't become a habit. 

As for individual performances, Jordan had a very good game here and I think an offensive outburst is just around the corner for him if he keeps it up. His brother also had a solid performance and he seems to be the one making the first lien go right now.

Maple Leafs

Player # of entries Shots generated Carry-ins Shots generated Dump-ins Shots generated Failed Entries
Phaneuf 5 0 1 0 4 0 0
Franson 2 2 1 0 1 2 1
McClement 2 1 1 1 1 0 1
Raymond 4 3 2 3 2 0 1
Ranger 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Lupul 9 6 5 5 4 1 1
Smith 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Orr 1 0 0 0 1 0 0
Leivo 3 1 2 1 1 0 0
Gunnarsson 1 0 1 0 0 0 0
Ashton 3 1 2 1 1 0 0
Bozak 3 0 0 0 3 0 1
Kadri 5 3 5 3 0 0 1
Rielly 3 2 1 1 2 1 0
Broll 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Gardiner 2 1 1 1 1 0 0
Bolland 3 1 1 1 2 0 1
Kessel 6 3 5 3 1 0 0
Team 52 24 28 20 24 4 7

Over half of the Leafs controlled entries were from Kessel, Kadri & Lupul and this was actually a weak game for Kessel's standards. Normally he has double-digit entries at even strength and was held to only six last night. That's still very good, but low for him since he is the primary puck carrier on his line.

5v5 Zone Exits

Hurricanes

# Player Pos. Touches Carry Pass Other Turnover Icing
4 Andrej Sekera D 21 0 5 2 1 1
7 Ryan Murphy D 15 0 5 2 2 0
8 Kevin Westgarth RW 2 1 0 0 0 0
11 Jordan Staal C 7 1 2 1 0 0
12 Eric Staal C 11 2 2 0 3 0
14 Nathan Gerbe RW 3 1 0 0 1 0
15 Tuomo Ruutu LW 3 1 0 0 0 0
18 Radek Dvorak RW 6 0 1 1 1 0
19 Jiri Tlusty LW 4 0 1 0 0 0
20 Riley Nash C 7 1 1 0 1 0
21 Drayson Bowman D 3 1 0 1 0 0
27 Justin Faulk D 25 2 3 0 0 2
28 Alex Semin RW 4 1 1 0 0 0
39 Patrick Dwyer RW 5 0 1 0 1 0
44 Jay Harrison D 11 0 3 1 0 0
53 Jeff Skinner LW 4 2 0 0 0 0
65 Ron Hainsey D 16 0 3 2 0 0
73 Brett Bellemore D 15 0 4 2 2 0

This was, by far, the best zone exit performance of the season for the Hurricanes defense corps, as just about everyone was able to advance the play without much issue. Hell, even Harrison made a few good outlet passes, one of which sprung Jordan Staal for a breakaway chance (which he fanned on). Murphy's ability to advance the play is also well-documented here and it's why I want him to stay in the lineup despite his poor underlying numbers. Those should improve if he can continue to be this strong at breakouts. 

Maple Leafs

# Player Pos. Touches Carry Pass Other Turnover Icing
3 Dion Phaneuf D 14 2 3 1 0 0
4 Cody Franson D 13 0 3 0 1 0
11 Jay McClement F 6 2 1 0 0 0
12 Mason Raymond F 13 2 3 0 1 0
15 Paul Ranger D 26 0 3 0 5 3
19 Joffrey Lupul F 5 2 1 0 0 0
23 Trevor Smith F 1 0 0 0 0 0
28 Colton Orr F 2 1 0 0 0 0
32 Josh Leivo F 3 0 1 0 0 0
36 Carl Gunnarsson D 20 0 0 0 2 0
37 Carter Ashton F 2 0 0 0 1 0
42 Tyler Bozak F 6 1 1 0 0 0
43 Nazem Kadri F 5 0 0 0 1 0
44 Morgan Rielly D 13 1 0 0 0 2
46 David Broll F 7 4 0 0 1 0
51 Jake Garinder D 26 0 4 2 3 1
63 Dave Bolland F 5 1 1 0 0 0
81 Phil Kessel F 7 2 1 0 1 0

Remember all the hype about Paul Ranger being a top-four defenseman in the pre-season? The Ranger/Gardiner pairing was responsible for eight defensive zone turnovers and Ranger had five of them. He also iced the puck three times, which was the same number of times he was able to successfully get the puck out of his zone. Gardiner also had a few turnovers, but was at least able to lead breakouts and contribute in other areas. Carl Gunnarsson also had a rough game through zone exits but his partner, Phaneuf, mitigated that a little.

 

Quantcast