Powerless Red Wings wilt under relentless Hurricanes

Detroit If Tampa Bay isnt the best team in the division, Carolina might be. . . The Red Wings had a good look at both teams this past week, and Carolina looked awfully good Sunday, defeating the Red Wings 2-1, and moving into the Central Division lead. . . Anthony Mantha scored with 10seconds left, his eighth goal, depriving former Plymouth Whalers goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic of the shutout. . . But the Hurricanes did a lot of things well, especially shutting down the Wings, who didnt help themselves by simply not shooting the puck on several scoring occasions. . . For the first part of the game we checked pretty well, we didnt give up a whole bunch of chances, our defensive zone coverage was better, coach Jeff Blashill said. We competed hard. We were sloppy, though, with the puck. Then, we didnt have a close enough shooting mentality. . . We talked even yesterday about when you get into the scoring areas, you have to shoot the puck. We passed up shooting opportunities to shoot the puck and as a result, we didnt create chaos around the net. . Dougie Hamilton shorthanded and Nino Niederreiter scored for Carolina, as the Hurricanes extended their win streak to eight games. . . . The Wings 8-17-4 lost their fifth game in the last six 1-4-1, with Nedeljkovic stopping 25 shots for the victory. . . We played hard, thats a good team over there, forward Dylan Larkin said. It was an emotional game. It was very much like a playoff game. Close checking. I liked how we hung in there with one of the best teams in our division. . We just have to score. We had some chances, but our line, with Fabs Robby Fabbri and Mo Mantha, we had chances, we just have to score. . . BOX SCORE. Carolina 2, Red Wings 1. . Hamilton scored a shorthanded goal at 15. 13, for the games first goal. . . The Wings went scoreless on two power plays, and allowed quality scoring chances for the Hurricanes during those instances, forcing goaltender Jonathan Bernier to turn away several 2-on-1 rushes. . But Hamilton corralled a loose puck, broke free on the odd-man rush, and using his teammate as a decoy, glided into the slot near the hash marks and snapped a shot past Bernier. . . Hes Bernier played great, Larkin said. Every time we need it, hes made great saves. Hes been so solid for us. It gives us confidence. We gave up too many 2-on-1s on the power play and you cant do that. We have to battle a little harder for him, hes been great. . . Hamilton had a great, unexpected scoring chance earlier in the second period. . His dump in caromed out of the corner and slid directly through Berniers crease, before the Red Wings goalie backhanded the puck. . . Carolina 20-6-1 got the insurance goal with Niederreiters 12th. . . Niederreiter and Sebastian Aho skated into the Wings zone on a 2-on-2 rush, Niederreiter took a drop pass from Aho, and using Filip Hronek as a screen, snapped a shot past Bernier just 1. 37 into the third period. Bernier stopped 30 shots, twice frustrating Jordan Martinook on Carolina 2-on-1 rushes in the second period. . . Hes been like this for over a year plus, said Blashill of Berniers goaltending. This is who he is and guys have tons of confidence that hes going to give us a chance to win the hockey game. . . But the Wings had precious little offense against a Hurricanes team defense that made it tough on the Wings to establish anything all day. . The big, mobile Carolina defense consistently broke up potential scoring threats, while the Hurricanes work ethic up and down the lineup never allows for a weak shift. . . They play hard, they never seem to take a night off and thats the approach we have to have, Larkin said. And its there, its coming, we work for each other.

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