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Our goaltending has been fabulous
14-02-2019 04:06 AM
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Our goaltending has been fabulous
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COLUMBUS Tanner Pearson Jersey , Ohio (AP) The Columbus Blue Jackets played one more playoff game this season than last, but it’s all the same to general manager Jarmo Kekalainen and coach John Tortorella. Not good enough.And apparently there’s plenty of blame to go around.”Everybody has to give skin here, from the coaches right on through, as far as what happened,” Tortorella said in his exit interview with reporters Thursday.The Blue Jackets promising season fizzled out in the end. They overcame injuries to key players and finished the regular season strong, making the Stanley Cup playoffs for the second season in a row. They won the first two in the first-round playoff series on the road against the Washington Capitals, only to drop the next four straight.It ended with a thud in a 6-3 loss in Game 6 on home ice Monday night.Despite how all that sounds, the team didn’t implode, Tortorella said.”We were a good enough team to beat Washington this year,” he said. ”We just did not make that big play and or get that big save at key times, and they did.”I like our team Carter Hutton Jersey Womens , I like our personnel,” he said. ”The biggest thing is we need to change our mindset here, (so) that we feel we belong in the playoffs. We need to think stronger in how to find a way. I want us to be more aggressive in our thinking and expect some more.”The Blue Jackets undoubtedly will have some different faces next season. Just how many remains to be seen. Kekalainen was coy when asked if the team needs more talented players to get deeper into the playoffs.”We’re always looking to upgrade, one way or another,” he said. ”I think we’re going to get better again from inside. It’s going to be the same approach.”Kekalainen cited the surprise trade last summer that brought star winger Artemi Panarin to town and the swift emergence of rookie center Pierre-Luc Dubois. But he won’t talk strategy.One the goals likely will be to sign Panarin and goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky – the team’s biggest stars – to contract extensions. Both will be unrestricted free agents in 2019, and the team would like to lock them up before that.Defenseman Jack Johnson and forward Matt Calvert will be unrestricted free agents on July 1, so the Blue Jackets will have to make a decision on whether to sign them to new contracts. The 28-year-old Calvert, the longest tenured Blue Jacket at eight seasons but never more than a bottom six player, tied his career-high season point total with 24 and had three playoff goals.The Blue Jackets also will have to decide whether to re-sign forwards Thomas Vanek and Mark Letestu and defensemen Ian Cole, all of whom were added at the trade deadline.Columbus finished with 97 points, second most in franchise history after last season’s 108 http://www.kingsproshop.com/authentic-ty...oli-jersey , and qualified for the playoffs as a wildcard. The team punctuated a furious comeback down the stretch with a 10-game winning streak in March.But the playoffs were a bust. Again.”We expected more out of ourselves this year,” defenseman Zach Werenski said on his way out this week. ”Go up 2-0 on the road, come back home we don’t get a win. I just think we have higher expectations, and we should. We are a good hockey team and we fell short of our goals this year. At the end of the day, if you are not holding the Stanley Cup, it’s kind of a failed season. This one definitely stings.”— RALEIGH, N.C. — If there has been a good thing about the ebbs and flows through the first two games of the season for the Carolina Hurricanes, it’s that they’ve been able to work through the down stretches.“We’re making a lot of mistakes, but we’re working hard enough to make up for it,” first-year coach Rod Brind’Amour said.The Hurricanes go for their first home victory when the New York Rangers visit for Sunday’s game at PNC Arena.Article continues below ...“I think we’re dictating the pace of play,” Brind’Amour said. “I think that’s what we want to do.”The Hurricanes (1-0-1) have been strong at times through two games Devan Dubnyk Jersey , though the opener became a 2-1 overtime loss to the New York Islanders.The Rangers (0-2-0) are still searching for their first victory after a 3-1 loss Saturday night at Buffalo.For Carolina, the style has been pleasing to Brind’Amour.“If we just keep that mindset and how we want to approach the game, we’ll take it,” Brind’Amour said.The Hurricanes haven’t done much on power plays, but the Rangers gave up two power-play goals in their loss to the Sabres.The Rangers didn’t have much to show for 44 shots on goal in Buffalo, but they’ll have a chance to improve on that when they’re back on the ice less than 24 hours after that outing.“I don’t want our hunger determined by the other team’s hunger,” Rangers coach David Quinn said.With the set of back-to-back games, Quinn said he would split the goaltending duties this weekend. That means Alexandar Georgiev is slated to face the Hurricanes after Henrik Lundqvist got the call for Saturday night in Buffalo.The Rangers are looking for consistent production from forward Jimmy Vessey, who had a strong opening night.“I just felt really confident,” Vessey said. “I think for me taking that confidence going forward is going to be huge.”The Hurricanes are without expected No. 1 goalie Scott Darling for a couple of weeks at the start of the season because of an injury. But the goaltending hasn’t been an issue in the small early sample size.“Our goaltending has been fabulous,” Brind’Amour said.Part of that is the addition of Curtis McElhinney Womens Eric Staal Jersey , who joined the team off waivers from the Toronto Maple Leafs just a few days before the start of the season.It has been a challenging time for the veteran goaltender, who posted the victory Friday night in Columbus.“I’m always grateful for an opportunity to play any time in the league,” he said. “It was nice to come out here and make a good first impression. … It has been a tough week. It has been hard for me. You step on the ice and everything seems to be normal again.”The Hurricanes scored their only goal in the opener in the final two minutes. Then in the next game, they notched a goal less than two minutes into the game.Carolina rookie forward Andrei Svechnikov has been active in the preseason and the first two games. He picked up his first NHL point Friday night with an assist in Columbus, becoming the third youngest player in franchise history with a point.“He’s up there in the NHL and he doesn’t look out of place,” Brind’Amour said.
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