Third-period flurry enough to see ‘Canes past Blackhawks, 5-3

Carolina Hurricanes

Carolina Hurricanes’ Nino Niederreiter (21) is congratulated on his goal by teammate Vincent Trocheck (16), center, and Jaccob Slavin (74) during the first period of an NHL hockey game against the Chicago Blackhawks in Raleigh, N.C., Friday, Feb. 19, 2021. (AP Photo/Karl B DeBlaker)

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Martin Necas’s power-play goal early in the third period ignited a three-goal frame as the Hartford Whalers — sorry, the Carolina Hurricanes — bested the Blackhawks, 5-3 on Friday night.

Necas ripped a shot from the top of the faceoff dot that deflected off of a man in front of the net, then off the crossbar, before ricocheting off of a defender and into the net. They all count the same at the end of the day, and that goal gave the ‘Canes a 3-2 lead.

Nino Niederreiter’s second goal of the game gave the hosts, who debuted their Whalers “Reverse Retro” jerseys, some breathing room. Less than two minutes later, Jaccob Slavin’s first goal of the campaign put Carolina ahead 5-2 with 3:14 to play.

Niederreiter opened the scoring with 4:38 left in the first period. From the faceoff dot, he lasered a puck over Kevin Lankinen’s shoulder on the far side of the net.

Early in the second period, Vincent Trocheck’s eighth goal of the season gave the ‘Canes a 2-0 lead. They won a battle along the boards before Trocheck dished the puck to Jake Bean, who jumped into the play. Bean whipped a backhanded pass back to Trockeck, who blasted a one-timer from the slot past Lankinen. Niederreiter picked up a secondary assist on the goal for his 300th career point.

Chicago tied the game with goals from Patrick Kane and Ian Mitchell late in the second period. Carl Soderberg scored on a power play late in the third, but Chicago couldn’t come back from Carolina’s onslaught in the final 20 minutes.

James Reimer stopped 26 of 29 shots in the win.

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