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Hurricanes smother Sabres. Five takeaways from Carolina's resounding win over Buffalo.

Justin Pelletier, The News & Observer on

Published in Hockey

RALEIGH, N.C. — The Carolina Hurricanes’ season of Jekyll and Hyde results continued Saturday, and the pendulum swung emphatically in the Canes’ favor.

Five different players scored goals, Pyotr Kochetkov stopped 21 shots and the Hurricanes, fresh off a disappointing and at times leaky overtime loss to the Islanders, locked down a 6-2 win over the Buffalo Sabres at PNC Arena.

Sebastian Aho, long a thorn in the Sabres’ side (more on that later), scored twice, Jack Drury scored his second goal in as many games and Andrei Svechnikov continued to rack up points despite not scoring to lead the way offensively for Carolina.

Kochetkov, meanwhile, started his fourth consecutive game and evened his season record at 4-4-1, but is 4-1-1 in his past six decisions.

Brent Burns also reached a milestone Saturday. With his second assist, on Teuvo Teravainen’s 11th goal of the season, Burns became the 17th defender in NHL history to record 600 career assists. He leads all active NHL defensemen in career assists — by five over former San Jose teammate and now Pittsburgh rival Erik Karlsson.

Here are five takeaways from the Canes’ win over Buffalo:

 

Four in a row for Kochetkov

The Hurricanes didn’t likely plan on a single-goalie playing situation this early in the season, never mind one that featured rising star Kochetkov in a regular role.

But, here we are.

Kochetkov, who in his rookie campaign a year ago went more than a month without a loss as the Canes rocketed to the top of the NHL standings after a middling beginning to the season, had a rough go of it early in the 2023-24 season while spelling Frederik Andersen and Antti Raanta on the team’s opening road trip.

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