Ron Francis: Hurricanes' Quest for the Cup

Ron Francis, whose jersey was retired by the Hurricanes earlier this year after a 23-year hockey career, will blog exclusively for about the 'Canes bid for the Stanley Cup.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

'Canes Take Control In Game 2

That's more like it! With all the talk surrounding the Oiler goalie
situation, it was important that the Canes not give them any life in
this game. From the Canes standpoint, their game was much better than
in game 1 in all areas. They skated better tonight and as a result were
able to put a lot more pressure on Edmonton and as the game progressed
that showed, as Edmonton became more and more frustrated, taking bad
penalties and giving up odd man rushes. The special teams have played a
key part in these playoffs and tonight was no exception. For me the key
part of the game was in the 2nd period when the Canes had a 1-0 lead
and a 5 on 3 PP. Edmonton was able to kill it off and should have
gained some momentum from this but instead they took another penalty
and the Canes were able to score a very important PP goal to take
control of the game. Any time you score 3 PP goals, chances are good
you will win the game and that was the case tonight. As good as the
Canes looked tonight, they must refocus on the next game in Edmonton.
It's tough when you know your opposition has to win 4 of the next 5 to
beat you, and it's tough when your mind starts to entertain thoughts of
just how close you are to attaining your dream, but Edmonton will give
everything they have in game 3 and the Canes must be ready. Lose it,
and you let a team that is on the verge of being down and out back into
the series with momentum; win it and you will be able to hear the fat
lady warming up. I hope to hear some music Saturday!


  • At 6/08/2006 12:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I do agree with you Ron. The Canes played a much better game then they did in game 1 of the series. Hopely the Canes will keep the momentun on they side and dose not let the Oiler come back into the series

  • At 6/08/2006 12:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    well said Ron. Alot of what you say is similar to what Peter L is saying. Like needing to skate to win. I think the players are feeling more confident now finally being here in the finals,and really not letting up and showing they will throw themselves at the puck to sacrifice their own bodies, to play as a whole team effort. Cam's Army. Rod's strength in game 1 and leadership behind the scenes is evident in everyone on the ice.

  • At 6/08/2006 1:49 AM, Blogger canesguy said…

    What a wonderful game! I had almost forgotten how nice it is to build a big lead and to have the only 3rd period tension be hoping that Wardo can keep his shutout. He may not have had the highlight film saves of Game 1 but he still had a bunch of mighty good ones, especially in the 1st period enabling us to cling to the 1 goal lead. Corey's goal with 3 seconds to go in the 2nd - we knew the game was ours at that point.
    Now we're off to Edmonton and all the madness Rexall Place can summon up for the Oilers. You know what - I believe our guys will handle it. GO CANES!

  • At 6/08/2006 2:33 AM, Blogger Stormbringer said…

    Definitely agree...MUCH BETTER game by the Canes than that in Game One. Everything RAWKED(!!)...the goaltending (my pick of Cam Ward for the Conn Smythe is looking very golden at the moment :D), the face-offs, the power play (for the most part*), and the penalty kill. Really, not much else needs to be said...

    Well, not quite. I will also say that just like you Mr. Francis, my biggest concern at this point is the Canes needing to refocus AND not get too high in the Oil's rig a.k.a. Rexall Place. Unfortunately AND at the risk of making some Caniacs unhappy, my gut feeling is that the Oil will take one game in E-Town. *Really* hope to be wrong about that...but on the bright side, if I am right, perhaps the Canes will win you-know-what in Raleighwood. And seeing my team win in my birthplace/original hometown would certainly make it that much more special. :D

    * - Can't say I was extremely thrilled at how the Canes let a 5-on-3 slip through their fingers like that. BUT, as we all know, they greatly made up for that. :D

  • At 6/08/2006 5:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Great Game -- I don't know what to think though: I really want to see the 'Canes win in five, but I can't pull against them in Edmonton. What do you guys think about that? Also, what are the chances of Dougie Weight and/or Recchi staying another year or two?

  • At 6/08/2006 6:13 AM, Anonymous janet rudderham said…

    It's interesting that though all the focus was on Edmonton's goaltending choice ,I don't know that that's where Edmonton was most shaky. Pronger wasn't nearly the force he usually is -I think the team as a whole were playing scared -or just could not get it together .But we must not forget they've been down before and stormed back ! Let's not let that happen -the games in Alberta are going to be crazy -media-wise ,pressure-wise , but at least the commentators on all the sports channels are showing a lot more respect and the Oiler rah-rahing has eased up considerably . Mostly because of a young goalie who is blowing the hockey world's collective mind ! Cam Ward might well be my choice for MVP -well ,he's in the top 5 !! A five way tie for first !! Sounds about right !Great game ,guys -much easier on the nerves -but don't relax -it ain't over yet !
    My 15 year old came home and told me that when he told a buddy that his Mom was a Carolina fanatic (that's a bad thing ?)the other boy was shocked -I think I 'm committing treason -and lovin' it ! Til later ! the Cdn. con

  • At 6/08/2006 6:18 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Ron, I just wanted to thank you for taking the time to give us your take on the games. I look forward to your blog almost as much as the next game. GO CANES!

  • At 6/08/2006 7:09 AM, Anonymous Dan said…

    I think we can say that the Canes played for 60 minutes. The only people who weren't happy with their performance would be Edmonton fans!

    I hope that Game 3 doesn't turn into a brawl, especially if we get an early lead. The third period started to see a little thuggery and I don't want to see anyone get injured just because Laraque drove someone's head into the glass. I know they're trying to send a message by being physical, but he was out of control.

  • At 6/08/2006 7:20 AM, Blogger Bobbert said…

    OK, I may be the only one out here, but is the taste of victory a little less sweet knowing Rolo is out of the picture? I was looking forward to a series as exciting as the Sabres series, and now it's not looking like that's going to happen. What a letdown. I love the Canes and I want the Cup in Raleigh, but I wanted it to be a battle representative of those we've fought to get here. If last night's game is any indication, we're not going to see that, and I think the victory will be a tiny bit less sweet because of it. GO CANES!

  • At 6/08/2006 7:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I know I'm getting ahead of things but I can't help feel a little sad that last night's game might have been end of the 2005 home season. <sniff>

    I have a little challenge for all of us Caniacs. RBC will be open for games 3 and 4 -- let's fill that place! Rexall looked pretty empty last night, and I know from 4 years ago that we can do better than that. NBC will be watching and we can show our support by rocking the house even when the game's 2500 miles away.

    GO CANES! Bring your game to Edmonton, and bring the Cup home!!! We'll be at the airport waiting for you!!!!!

  • At 6/08/2006 7:41 AM, Blogger Rick said…

    Again, Ron, you are on the money! The Canes showed EVERYBODY (especially the media which has a very difficult time giving them any credit) why they are in the Stanley Cup Finals and headed toward owning Lord Stanley's Cup! Awesome is an understatement for the determination in the hearts of the all the team! Interestingly the Canes showed skill in all positions and all lines: a defenseman, Kaberle, moving into the point like a forward and scoring on the PP! And Praise God! and thank God for our Captain Roddy! Talk about taking control and providing leadership, he's the man! Brind'Amour was EVERYWHERE! And perhaps the real trump card for the Canes: Roddy's face-off domination! What a blessing that is especially in the offensive zone. CAM WARD! I loved the look on the Oilers faces as they pounded shot after shot, even a couple of open net gimmies, at Wardo and he rejected them all! I think I heard one of the announcers say Cam was the first rookie goalkeeper in 80+ years to have a shutout in the Finals!!! Get em Cam! Now the Canes have a simple task: play Canes hockey. I didn't say easy, I said simple. They have showed indeed proven they can skate, hit, check and score. As Nike coined, Just Do It! I continue to pray God's blessing and favor upon our Carolina Hurricanes!

  • At 6/08/2006 7:41 AM, Blogger nchurricane1 said…

    Canes looked really good right across the board last night. No real stars, just great teamwork and I really didn't see the Oilers goalie situation was a major factor at all. The way the Canes played last night would of beat any goalie and Cam was on top of his game as well.

    What I hope we don't see as the series progresses are more cheap shots like Laraques placed near the end of the game. We don't need to see another Eric Cole. And if Eric is reading this, we all miss you out on the ice but know you are still a huge part of this team.

    I am also down deep hoping the Canes loose one in Edmonton so that there is a game 5 at home and the cup is won and presented right here in Raleigh. I won't be upset with a 4 game sweep though!

    GO CANES!!

  • At 6/08/2006 7:46 AM, Blogger lak said…

    There isn't much more to be said about this hockey team. They are just awesome!!! They are the ones very much in control right now. I am just in awe of Cam, he sure doesn't look like a rookie. Boys, just keep that focus and that momentum going. This is our Cup to lose! GO CANES!

  • At 6/08/2006 8:20 AM, Blogger rmmeli said…

    Yes, we are 2-0 and the Oilers looked a beaten team last night but there is a long way to go yet. Undoubtedly the Oilers will be a vastly better team on home ice so the Canes have a lot to do yet. I agree with other peoples comments that the Oiler goalie was not the problem. To me, the Oilers tried to play Canes hockey and that is not their game (as was evident by the score). Also it did look like Laraque was out to hurt someone and it took the refs until the point when it didn't matter to call a game misconduct. Hoepfully they will be in more control on Saturday if things get out of hand.

  • At 6/08/2006 8:37 AM, Blogger HurricanesAngel said…

    The game last night was picture perfect with one exception. I would love to have seen Eric Staahl score. He's playing great hockey but it's not the same when he's not scoring in almost every game. He's due, just hope it comes in the next game. Cam Ward is AMAZING. He is so humble and I don't think there is a vain bone in his body. He's a wonderful person and a great asset to the Canes! Gosh darn I can't say a bad thing about any player on this team. They are all AMAZING! Go CANES!

  • At 6/08/2006 8:53 AM, Anonymous plankroader said…

    Can the 'Canes finally get some respect from the league, the refs, the media, and the announcers? I am so sick and tired of everyone talking around them, and when they do talk about them, they speak of how it is the other teams that are lacking something - NOT how great of a team we have put together. Management went out and got a great coach and great players, and we are going to hoist the CUP in CAROLINA!!!

  • At 6/08/2006 8:56 AM, Blogger SFC Ken said…

    Mr. Francis and everyone else has already said it all. If they play 60 minutes of THEIR kind of hockey, they will usually come out on top.

    I too am tron about a sweep...but, I want the canes to do it in 4. I'm being selfish though, cause like I said, I'll be heading back overseas so I'll miss ALL of game 5 until my wife sends me the video. But, lets not get a head of ourselves either. The Oilers have come back being down 2 games, so have the Canes, so we know it's possible.

    The Canes need to take the Oiler fans out of games 3 & 4 early and fast.

    Oh, and Jussi played a solid game, penalties is what doomes the Oilers last night.

    And I don't think our victory was empty and if we win the cup it was because the Canes bench is deep. We have 2 goalies that can get the job done. Mr. Rutherford did an outstanding job of puting this team together.

    GO CANES!!!!

  • At 6/08/2006 9:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I'm shocked....I made it through a playoff game without fearing having a heart attack! Thank you CANES!!! lol.

    Seriously - they put together a full 60 minutes of hockey, and most importantly kept their composure when Edmonton completely unravelled. I can't say I fault them for getting that way - it's just human nature. When you know you've been beaten, you want to take down as many of he opponents along with you.

    I fully expect Edmonton to come out with bun barrells blazing on Saturday. Canes need to forget about last night. it's over - time to focus on Game 3. Adjustments will need to be made as I'm sure Edmonton will tweak their strategy somewhat.

    It was great to see everyone on our team contribute and play big roles - especially Dougie and Recchi. They have been HUGE additions to this team, and I truly hope to see #39 and #18 suit up in Red/Black/White next year.

    Roddy may have some competetion for Smythe trophy. Cam is playing like a man possessed out there. Hopefully the pressure of being back home won't affect him. I doubt it - he seems unflappable. Wish I had nerves like that (and I'm 10 years older than he is).

    I couldn't be more proud of this team, and the fans. I had a few out of towners comment on how highly they thought of the area and the enthusiasm we have for our team.

    We have taken the NHL by storm! Hurricane Stanley is at Category 5, and gaining strength! The path of the storm has it hitting Edmonton on Saturday evening!

  • At 6/08/2006 9:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I have tickets to the 5th game. Can we throw one of the games in Edmonton so we can win the cup at home in the 5th? Canes would make more money that way.

  • At 6/08/2006 9:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Thanks for the insights Ronnie. It's awesome to still have you as a part of our "team"!!!

    Awesome game last night. We literally dominated every aspect of the game - PP, PK, Offense, Defense, and Discipline. We took a few bad penalties, but the PK and shot blocking last night were just amazing.

    I also liked the way we handled the thuggery at the end of the game. Our guys continued to maintain their discipline. The media is claiming that it's because we don't have anyone who can fight Laraque. I say it's because Lavi gave them a talk and let them know that we were NOT going to let them get into our heads. We took every hit, got right back up and continued to skate our butts off!!! That had to be deflating for Edmonton, whose more physical play was considered an advantage prior to the series. We showed them last night that even at its worst, we can take whatever they want to dish out. And as for an enforcer on our end, I've got no doubts that Commodore would be more than happy to go toe-to-toe with Laraque if that's what our team needs to spark a rally. We simply didn't need it last night, so we didn't do it.

    That being said, the cheap shot by Laraque on Andrew Ladd should warrant a suspension. Again, our guys are taking the high road and saying "it's just playoff hockey" (which is smart because it sends a message to Edmonton that we won't be intimidated), but the league needs to take a close look at the hit and send a message that INTENTIONAL cheap shots like that are NEVER acceptable. We were fortunate that Ladd bounced right back up, but based on the way Laraque hit him in the back of the head, the result easily could have been much different. At that point, a game major and game misconduct was probably more of a reward to Edmonton than a penalty since it was not going to affect the outcome of the game. I'm sure the Edmonton guys were high-fiving about that hit in the locker room after the game. I think a 1 game suspension and substantial fine are in order to send a message that just because the game is beyond hope, it is not OK to intentionally cheap shot somebody like that. I'm all for physical play, and I think Edmonton did the right thing by getting physical at the end of the game. But cheap shots like that one are unacceptable!!!

    And for all of you hoping for a loss so that we can win it at home, be careful what you wish for. Even if we bring it back here with a 3 games to 1 advantage, there's no guarantee we'll win it here. A game 6 could easily be a possibility then, which means that a game 7 could also be a possiblity. And my 40 year old, colesterol clogged heart can't take that!!! I've got game 5 tickets and would love the experience seeing us win the cup at home just as much as anyone, but I'm cheering for the 'Canes to win both games in Edmonton.

    Finally, regarding the Smythe trophy. As of right now, it's a toss up between Cam and Roddy, but there's still a lot of hockey to play. In my mind, Roddy has the edge, simply due to the completeness of everything he has provided, and in an unhumanly consistent way. Cam has had a few rough periods. Roddy's (self-proclaimed) worst game was when he scored two goals (and dropped below 50% face-off wins for the only time in the playoffs). Cam's done some AMAZING things, but I think Roddy is more deserving. Cam's got many years left to win his own Smythe. Either way, I agree that even the Smythe will be a team award, and based on the character and unity this team has demonstrated all year, I would not be surprised to hear that message again from whoever wins it.

    Go Canes!!!

  • At 6/08/2006 9:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    the CUP is so much now a given that the canes will it because the edmonton main goalie is out of action...the only way the canes will lose is if there plane crashes flying to or from edmonton...paying $280 for a ticket to a 5-0 game is kind of a ripoff now...i can see a 5-0 game for $12 anytime during the season..there is no challenge now to this series

  • At 6/08/2006 9:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I'd like to comment on the fan base here in Carolina. I know that we are taking a lot of flack about not selling out games and what-not. Although that may be true, I think the point that gets missed is that although we may not have AS MANY fans as big market teams, the fans we do have are THE BEST. I've been to hockey games all over, and I've never seen a small group of fans have so much passion and make so much NOISE!!!!

    I'll take quality over quantity any day!!!

  • At 6/08/2006 9:52 AM, Anonymous Gary said…

    We have now seen the two extremes, sloppy hockey in game one and nicely executed hockey in game two. The Oilers were out played the way Carolina was out played in the first two periods of game one. The major difference is that Carolina was able to figure out what they needed to do to win in game one and adjusted and Edmonton had no answer for Carolina last night. The Carolina coaching staff did a great job getting the team to play their game last night

    What’s with MacTavish’s comments in the press conference about Ladd having taken out Roloson and anytime you have a chance to finish a check against Ladd you’re definitely going to take it. In my mind MacTavish is focusing on something that should not even be a thought. He needs to figure out how to split the Carolina defense, get the puck in deep and how to get some quality scoring chances.

    As much as I love highlight reel saves by Cam Ward I am glad there were much fewer of them last night. There seemed to be very few times last night were Carolina was running around chasing the puck, they stayed in their positions and set up their defense as opposed to being the “monkey in the middle”. We need to do this for two more games.

  • At 6/08/2006 9:57 AM, Blogger dave's wings said…

    One out of 2....That should be the goal going into Edmonton. THeir building is a crazy place. I watched my wings hold a 2 goal lead in that place in a Game 6, to only lose control and lose the game. The object here should be to not get ahead of yourself and look for one of 2. Especially Game 3. They have the Oilers right where they need them to be...frustrated, goalie questions, taking stupid penalties and playing the best damn hockey on the planet. Take Game 3 and play it like its do or die. Then its just about in the bag (although being a Yankee Fan I should shut my big mouth).

    Canes series to lose now, and Edmonton's to win. I think this team likes to play it that way. That's why they won Game 7 and Game 1....KEEP IT UP. WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!
    Go Canes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • At 6/08/2006 10:06 AM, Blogger linda schlachter said…


  • At 6/08/2006 10:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Good Morning! What a game! My boss asked me if I would have preferred a game that wasn't so one-sided, my reply "Heck No!" We've been on the other side of the fence many times where we couldn't buy a goal and it sure was not to see our boys playing great hockey and shutting the other team out! We don't have many of those games and quite frankly, my heart needed the rest!

    It's one thing when it's a close game and the hits are pretty clean and done because of the closeness of the game however when a player like Laraque hits Ladd when they are already down 5 points, nothing to gain except hurting someone and possibly doing serious harm, is just down right unconscionable!

    As far as bringing the cup home for the win...sure that would be fantastic but I say, keep the momentum guys, take it in 4 and we'll see ya at the airport! I don't want to take any chances having this dream slip away for TV ratings, more money from ticket sales etc. GO CANES!

    Oh yeah, Smythe Trophy, definitely Roddy! He has been a force in many areas of the game and has shown terrific leadership. I say time it right guys and maybe Cam can drink champagne out of THE CUP at his reception.

  • At 6/08/2006 11:05 AM, Blogger judgesmales said…

    Ronald, Tell the fat lady to get her pipes warmed up. More importantly, tell the guys to get their Vokey wedges warmed up. If the Canes bring it like they did in game 2 we'll be chipping our Titleist into the Stanley Cup in no time.

  • At 6/08/2006 1:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I don't know about anyone else, but i am tired of hearing people say, "Oh Roloson's out, now you are sure to win. It is an unfair advantage." If I remember correctly hockey is a complete team sport. If you want to win the ultimate prize you have to have a complete team around you. You have to have that back up goalie that can come in and perform under pressure and get the job they are paid to do done. I.E. Mr. Cam Ward. We are 2-0 in this series because we have that complete team. Our use of call ups, Ladd and LaRose, from the minor leagues when Cole got hurt was brilliant. The aquisition of such great talent like Recchi and Weight was brilliant. And of course the brilliant play of both Gerber(who got us to the playoffs) and Cam, who has come in and done what you have to do to win the games ultimate prize. That is why we are 2-0 and halfway to North Carolina's first professional sports championship.

    And I fully agree about filling the RBC Center on Saturday and Monday. I know i will be there!

    Go Canes!

  • At 6/08/2006 3:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Ron Please give me your professional opinion!!! :-) - Will Laraque be out on Saturday? I posted my thoughts on canes sight but I thought you would know how the rules are enforced when it came to one like this??? And if you were already asked I apologize!

    NHL Rule 44 b
    Any player who incurs a total of two (2) game misconducts for Boarding under Rule 44 (b), in either Regular Season or Playoffs, shall be suspended automatically for the next game of his Team. For each subsequent game misconduct penalty the automatic suspension shall be increased by one game.


    One in Playoff (last night) and one against San Jose

  • At 6/09/2006 8:33 AM, Blogger Ron Francis said…

    Under normal circumstances you would be correct about the suspension, however when a team reaches the Cup finals, all previous game suspensions are erased. Therefore this would be Laraque's first and thus he is not out for game 3. Hope this helps.

  • At 6/09/2006 9:11 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Ronnie -

    Thanks for the clarification on Laraque. Would you care to also share you OPINION about whether you think he should be suspended for a game? I've already shared mine.

    Regarding watching the game at RBC, although I think it's cool that lots of fans can get together in one place to cheer the team on, the thought of paying $10 for a beer will probably steer me toward Damon's or Bate's Lucky B's downtown (

  • At 6/09/2006 4:28 PM, Blogger Stormbringer said…

    Regarding Laraque, like many Caniacs, I too *really* wish he could be suspended for the remainder of the series. It absolutely kills me that just because it's the Finals, Laraque will somehow go unpunished for such a blatant boarding AND kneeing (or whatever the heck he was trying to do to Ladd there in front of the Canes bench).

    The NHL *really* should look into changing the rule(s) regarding playoff suspensions...gotta send a message to guys like Laraque somehow, and letting the punishment go just because the player's team is a few games away from Lord Stanley's Prize certainly isn't going to send that message.

  • At 6/09/2006 5:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Face it Caniacs, nobody is going to give the 'Canes any respect until they win the Stanley Cup. The 'Canes need to pay their dues to earn any respect. That means winning championships consistently over the years. Before game 2, three of four OLN announcers predicted an Oilers win. Look at how downplays the 'Canes two victories. If it were the Canadians or Maple Leafs instead of the 'Canes just imagine the headlines.

    I also don’t want to hear another thing about the Oilers goalies. Roloson went out in game 1 AFTER THE 'CANES TIED THE GAME FOR CRYIN' OUT LOUD! ENOUGH! The Oilers blew game 1 and fell apart in front of a capable goalie in game 2. The ‘Canes were aggressive and scored their own goals, “thank you very much”. The Oilers were aggressive and didn’t score enough in game 1 and not at all in game 2, “thank you very much, especially Cam Ward”.

    As a 'Canes fan I am thankful that we are witnessing hockey history. History will prove just how good the ‘Canes are. The ‘Canes are defining the new hockey and I am so thankful. THIS IS HOCKEY AND THE ‘CANES ARE THE BEST TEAM RIGHT NOW. I think the players, coaches, and Ron really get it. They are keeping the proper perspective. Thank you ‘Canes for bringing hockey back.

    I am enjoying every second of the playoffs. I BELIEVE! Go ‘Canes!

  • At 6/09/2006 7:21 PM, Blogger randycane said…

    ronnie, after actually seeing the
    oil skate a couple games here, what's your thoughts about their team speed? as an old fan (but don't skate), i wasn't impressed with them...Canes and Buff. both are burners! also, last game i was
    happy to see the oil do something we used to do -overpass-!! i think the canes blocking shots got into their head (not to mention wardos great glove hand) - THIS HOCKEY IS
    GREAT!!! ...Vern

  • At 6/10/2006 11:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    nc hurricane 1 said it well..virtually everybody has forgotten that the Canes earlier suffered a big loss whenn Eric Cole went down. Eric, you are not forgotten and are truly an integral part of this team. To me, that may be the most satisfying part of the experience if the Canes bring home the Cup.. knowing that Eric's name will also be proudly displayed on the Stanley Cup, along with all of the other deserving names that will be inscribed on the Cup. GO CANES!

  • At 6/10/2006 11:53 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Just a quick thought on Andrew Ladd. This kid has made a tremendous contribution in the Finals, playing under control and taking some hits, yet keeping his cool. Perhaps the veterans should follow his lead, concentrating less on so many passes and throwing more pucks at the net. I applaude team play as much as anyone, but I thought Ladd taking the shot rather than trying to feather, at best, a difficult pass, was the proper way to come out firing against an untested goalie. Hopefully, getting shots on goal is something that the Canes will be laser focused on in Game 3 and beyond. Again, congrats to Andrew and kudos to all of the Canes for 4 periods of great hockey. Keep it up and let's bring the cup back to Raleigh. GO CANES!!


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