RALEIGH — The Hurricanes opened their preseason schedule Tuesday by hosting the Tampa Bay Lightning, cashing in on their chances in a 5-2 win.
Carolina got goals from Jayden Halbgewachs, Caleb Jones, Tony DeAngelo, Noel Gunler and Kieffer Bellows, and both Frederik Andersen and Pyotr Kochetkov made 13 saves splitting duties in net.
1. Welcome back, Tony DeAngelo. The defenseman had a high-event night, breaking up a pair of odd-man rushes, haphazardly turning the puck over in his own end a couple of times, and, of course, getting on the scoreboard.
DeAngelo gave Carolina a 3-1 lead in the second period after Brandon Perlini, in camp on a PTO, took a wrist shot that was blocked and bounced right to the Hurricanes defenseman. DeAngelo one-timed the puck and beat Hugo Alnefelt for his first goal in a Carolina sweater since he scored in the Hurricanes’ Game 5 win over the Bruins in the 2002 playoffs. He also added a secondary assist on Kieffer Bellows’ third period goal.
“Personally, I felt really good in the first period and I felt terrible in the last two,” DeAngelo said. “I kept mishandling the puck, the passes just weren’t as crisp as I’d like them to be. But that’s what preseason is for.”
2. Felix Unger Sorum, the 62nd overall pick in this summer’s draft, hasn’t looked out of place to start training camp despite perhaps being the youngest player on any team’s roster this preseason. Unger Sorum, who just turned 18 on Sept. 14, played on Carolina’s top line with Ryan Suzuki and Jamison Rees and was arguably the most notable of all three.
He nearly set up DeAngelo for an early goal in the first period, and then in the second he forced a turnover on the forecheck and set up Caleb Jones for a one-timer that got through a Rees screen.
When coach Rod Brind’Amour was asked which players he noticed, he immediately mentioned Unger Sorum.
“Well, I actually the youngest kid on the ice was pretty — to be honest, I was a little (unsure),” Brind’Amour said. “He just turned 18, you’re not sure how he’s going to take the moment. And he looked like he had no problem. … I think he caught my eye for sure.”
Unger Sorum got pushed around a bit at times — not a surprise for a teenager weighing 170 pounds — but the skill, poise and smarts all seem to be there.
“He’s just a kid,” Brind’Amour added. “There’s definitely a bright future, I think, for him.”
3. Frederik Andersen split time with Pyotr Kochetkov in net, with Andersen handing over the reins to the Russian rookie after 32:18. Andersen stopped 13 of 14 shots, only allowing a goal to Alex Barre-Boulet on Tampa Bay’s first power play.
Kochetkov held down the fort the rest of the way, also making 13 saves on 14 shots — including a couple of nice stops early in the third period — and even picking up an assist on DeAngelo’s goal.
“Our goaltending was good, there’s probably wasn’t as good,” Brind’Amour said, “and that’s the difference in the game.”
Number to know
13 — Shots on goal by Carolina’s defense, more than half of the Hurricanes’ total of 24.
Jayden Halbgewachs — One way to get your name out there even if no one wants to type or say it is to score a goal. Halbgewachs did just that, opening the scoring by cleaning up a puck in front. The 26-year-old showed a willingness to get to high-traffic areas and also flashed some of the skill that made him a 70-goal scorer in the WHL.
The parking lots — Did you know parking at PNC Arena is $40 this year? Yikes.