NHL Game Summary - Tampa Bay at Carolina
(Friday, February 20th)
Final Score: Carolina 4, Tampa Bay 1
Raleigh, NC (Sports Network) - Joe Corvo scored two power-play goals in 39 seconds, and the Carolina Hurricanes continued their playoff push with a 4-1 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Jussi Jokinen notched his first goal with the Hurricanes -- against his former team -- after coming over in a trade on February 7. Eric Staal had a goal and an assist in Carolina's third win in four games, and Cam Ward made 12 saves in the win.
The Hurricanes sit in ninth place in the Eastern Conference, one point behind Buffalo and Florida.
"Now we're not chasing the hunt so much, you can see it," Hurricanes head coach Paul Maurice said. "You can see the herd, and you're not so far off the middle of the pack now. I do, I think it should take a little pressure off. It will last about 24 hours because I think Colorado beat Washington tonight. They've got some guysback,and they're healthy, and they're good."
Vaclav Prospal scored the only goal for Tampa Bay, which has lost four straight. Mike McKenna allowed four goals on 41 shots to take the loss.
"The one positive I thought was McKenna," Lightning head coach Rick Tocchet said. "After letting that bad goal in, he really battled; I've got to give the kid credit. It was a great job for him to battle."
Carolina thoroughly dominated the game, outshooting the Lightning, 41-13. Tampa Bay was in danger of recording its lowest shot output for a game all- time, as its record is 11, done twice, with the last time occurring December 4, 2001, in a tie against New Jersey. It was a season-low in shots for Tampa Bay.
Carolina got on the board first on Staal's wide-angle shot from the left circle at the 8:30 mark of the first period.
The Lightning tied the game early in the second, as Prospal cleanly beat Ward on a wrist shot from the slot 1:53 into the period.
Tampa Bay turned the puck over in its own zone late in the second, and the Hurricanes took advantage. Jokinen found the puck all alone in the slot and one-timed it past McKenna at 14:30.
A lengthy 5-on-3 power play allowed the Hurricanes to take a three-goal lead early in the third. Tampa Bay was called for three penalties in a 1:07 span, and Corvo scored twice in 39 seconds to put Carolina in front, 4-1, with 15:43 left to play.
"On the first one, (Corvo) and Ray (Whitney) switched spots, and Joe got the puck from one side," Maurice said. "And the next, I think Ray put that in the perfect spot and it went right off the back heel, and Joe got all of it. They were giving us shots."
The Hurricanes cruised to the win from there.
Carolina has taken all five meetings from the Lightning this season...Tampa Bay has lost five straight on the road and 9-of-11 overall...The Hurricanes retired No. 2 for defenseman Glen Wesley. Wesley recorded 128 goals and 409 assists in 20 seasons for the Bruins, Whalers, Hurricanes and Maple Leafs...The Lightning also recorded 11 shots during a 5-3 loss to the Bruins on December 18, 1993...Whitney and Sergei Samsonov each had two assists for Carolina.
02/20 22:34:30 ET