First off, I’m still trying to recover from Friday’s EPIC loss to the Leafs. It was a very poor outing, but I was hopeful that the Thrashers would bounce back from the beat down. Atlanta made their way to Raleigh, NC on Sunday to face the division rival Canes. The Canes seem to be quite impressive lately, along with nearly the whole Southeast division.
The game started off with a quick goal from Tuomu Ruutu of the Canes, only 1:20 into the first period. It looked as if this game was headed downhill with such a quick start. Bryan Little answered back 11:46 into the first, with his 11th goal of the season(a beautiful wrap-around goal). The period ended in a 1-1 tie as both goalies appeared to be pretty solid other than allowing the two goals.
The second period was mostly all in the Canes’ favor when they scored two goals in the first 5:33. The first came from Zac Dalpe which was a tip-in and his 3rd goal of the season. Not much later, another came from Jeff Skinner on the power play with a slapshot, and his 14th of the season. Nic Berfgors put some fight back in the Thrashers with his 9th of the season in the 3rd. In my opinion, he really seems to be showing the team that he wants to be there. Since the “trade rumors” started, he has been playing really well and putting some pucks in the net. The 2nd ended with the Canes up 3-2.
The third period had one lone goal from none other, Bryan Little. His 2nd of the night was gained with a wrist shot to the upper right shelf, right past goalie Peters. Pavelec was solid in the 3rd, saving all 12 shots and giving the Thrashers at least one point going into OT. In reality, they needed more than this one point to catch up to both the Caps and the Bolts in the division.
With both teams going strong into OT, it was a toss up as to who would win this game. Both sides had chances to score the game winner, but in the end, it went to the Canes & Erik Cole with his 11th of the season. Pavelec made one great save, but the Canes were able to recover the puck and put it past the Thrashers goalie, giving Carolina the 2 points and the win.
I don’t know what it is with the Sons of Blueland lately….Maybe it’s the few roster moves they’ve been forced to make after Ben Eager was suspended for four games & having Kane, Slater, and Modin injured. We’re all hoping the Thrashers can regain their composure and be that team they were in November. Every team has their slump, that’s been proven, but hopefully this one won’t last too long and hopefully, they’ll inch their way closer to the top of the division. Who knows, there’s still that chance they can get their 2nd division crown, along with the banner hanging from atop Philips Arena…