Raleigh, NC (AP) – jesper fast deflected in one shot by Jesperi Kotkaniemi at 7:09 of overtime to give the Carolina Hurricanes a 3–2 series-clinching victory over New Jersey devils Thursday night.
deflection of beam while shielding akira schmidt What started as a celebration for the Hurricanes, who never led until the final play and twice fell behind by a goal, won the best-of-seven series 4–1 to reach the Eastern Conference Finals.
In a tight first game of the second round matchup, Fast made amends for that when he popped a puck on goal in front of an open net in the first period.
Jacob Slavin And Brent Burns also scored for Carolina, and Frederick Anderson Made 27 saves.
dawson mercer And timo mier Scored for New Jersey. Schmidt stopped 36 shots.
This is Carolina's first trip to the Eastern Conference Finals since 2019. The Hurricanes would face the winner of the Florida–Toronto series, which the Panthers lead 3–1.
The first four games of the series were full of one-sided results, with at least four goals and a starting goaltender early in each. Carolina won the first two games at home by 11-2 margins, then shrugged off the Game 3 loss by opening things up in the second period in Game 4 for a 6-1 road win on Tuesday.
The Hurricanes were in this position in the first round, with a chance to shut out the New York Islanders on home ice in Game 5.
This time, they needed a dramatic ending to avoid a repeat.
The Devils' exit comes in a season where a young group has reached post-season contention earlier than expected.
New Jersey finished one point behind the Hurricanes in the Metropolitan Division for the league's third-best points total (112) and the franchise's first playoff appearance in five years, then swept the rival New York Rangers in seven games despite going 0–2. Gave. for their first playoff series win since 2012.
Both teams missed apparently easy putts, which loomed large as the game was pushed into OT.
The initial spots of the storm included seth jarvis‘ The deflection went off at about 6 minutes from the right post. came again Paul Stastney Quickly finding the top of the crease – only to see the puck lift swiftly over the exposed net in a play that left him shaking his head in excitement once back on the bench.
The Devils' disappointing moment came in the wild sequence of the second period.
Meier stole possession behind the Carolina net and started a pass-happy sequence that saw the puck go Michael McLeod To Phil Hughes Just outside the crease, and then in the opposite direction to Meier for a put away chance – only to see Meier send the puck harmlessly through and out of the crease.
McLeod had a huge defensive play with about 6 1/2 minutes left in the third, getting his stick to intercept Fast's attempt at an empty goal after Schmid lost the puck in the back of the net. … Carolina finished with a 39-29 shot advantage. … The Devils went 1-for-24 on the power play this season against the Hurricanes before Meier's second-period goal. … Carolina's Jordan Martinuk Slavin's second period goal, bringing him up to 10 points in the series after his first period score. … former North Carolina State and current Buffalo Bills running back nyhem hynes The pregame storm-warning siren sounded for the storm to take the ice.