The Wraparound: Are the Hurricanes already facing a must-win?

The Wraparound is your daily look at the 2021 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs. We’ll break down the NHL playoff games today with the all-important television and live streaming information included.

• Carolina looks to even things up with the Lightning in Game 2.

• Last night, Montreal took Game 7 in Toronto.

• Want to catch up on Monday night’s playoff action? Check out the NHL Playoff Buzzer.

It’s only 1-0, but, the Lightning have struck like this before.

Carolina is down on home ice, which the Panthers certainly can relate, too. While Florida made a push in their First Round series with Tampa Bay, the Hurricanes have higher expectations. Going to Tampa down 2-0 isn’t in their plans.

The Lightning got through last round taking a 2-0 lead in Sunrise and holding on the rest of the way. Carolina is deeper, less flawed than Florida; but, knowing what the Lightning can do with an advantage, can ill-afford to head to AMALIE Arena with anything less than a tied series.

[NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs 2021 Second Round schedule, TV info]

Carolina is no stranger to adversity, in its own way. Before finally taking the series with No. 4 seed Nashville, the Hurricanes dealt with consecutive double overtime defeats on the road.

“Nothing has come easy for this group, ever,” said Hurricanes head coach Rod Brind’Amour. “Nothing’s ever handed to them. Everything they’ve gotten, they’ve earned. There’s never been an easy game. It seems like there has never been anything that’s gone easily.”

While the Predators put on a competitive series, the Lightning are a different entity entirely. Losing at home to Tampa Bay and some losses in Nashville feel like a different league. The Hurricanes were certainly resilient in the First Round, but at no point did they trail in the series.

[NBC 2021 STANLEY CUP PLAYOFF HUB]

Now the Hurricanes will have to do it without Nino Niederreiter, who will miss the entire series after sustaining an injury in practice on Saturday. They survived the first few games against Nashville without Jaccob Slavin on the blue line, but he eventually returned as projected.

It’s another challenge for the Hurricanes, who have faced plenty of them. This challenge feels like the most dangerous, though; as relentless as the Hurricanes are, the Lightning at the least match them. They’re on a mission too, as defending Stanley Cup champions, with the best goalie in the world and the best lineup they’ve had all season.

No, Tuesday night isn’t a must-win for the Hurricanes, not exactly; yet, it really does feel like it, and that’s a credit to the beast the Lightning have created. The Panthers went to Tampa Bay and took one game after losing their first two at home, but they never really recovered in that series enough to legitimately challenge the Lightning’s chances of taking the series.

These home games, against a team like the Lightning, are as close to must-win as opening home games can be in a series.

TUESDAY’S NHL PLAYOFF SCHEDULE

Game 2: Lightning at Hurricanes, 7:30 p.m. ET (TB leads 1-0) – NBCSN (livestream)

WEDNESDAY’S NHL PLAYOFF SCHEDULE

Game 1: Canadiens at Jets, 7:30 p.m. ET – NBCSN (livestream)
Game 2: Golden Knights at Avalanche, 10 p.m. ET (COL leads 1-0) – NBCSN (livestream)

Marisa Ingemi is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop her a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow her on Twitter @Marisa_Ingemi.

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    Bruins set NHL record with 12 straight home wins to start season

    Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports
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    BOSTON — The Boston Bruins set the NHL record for most home victories to start a season with their 12th straight, topping the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime with a power-play goal from David Pastrnak.

    The Bruins broke the mark of 11 that was set by the 1963-64 Chicago Blackhawks and equaled by the Florida Panthers last season.

    “That felt awesome,” Bruins first-year coach Jim Montgomery said. “We talked about it after the second (period) going into the third. There’s been a lot of great teams in this league and you’re able to set a precedent, break a record. It’s pretty special and it doesn’t happen if those guys don’t believe in themselves like they do.”

    Boston, which trailed 2-0 late in the second period, tied it with 9:33 left in regulation when David Krejci scored his second of the game on a shot from the right point.

    “It’s never fun being down going into the third, you’re sitting in here (in the locker room) trying to figure it out,” Krejci said. “You want to come out and do the job, something special on the line. It’s hard to win in this league. To get 12 in a row at home is pretty special.”

    In overtime, Carolina was playing shorthanded after being called for too many men on the ice when Pastrnak one-timed a pass from Brad Marchand inside the far post from above the left circle.

    “It was a big win for us, obviously, coming from behind,” Pastrnak said.

    Jesperi Kotkaniemi and Stefan Noesen each scored a power-play goal for Carolina, and Pyotr Kochetkov made 38 saves. The Hurricanes lost their fifth straight.

    In a rematch of last spring’s opening-round playoff series that the Hurricanes won in seven games, Carolina shutout the NHL’s highest scoring team for nearly two periods and jumped ahead a pair of power-play goals in the opening period.

    “We took too many penalties. That’s hurting us right now,” Kotaniemi said. “I think 5-on-5 we’re doing a really good job. We started good tonight and couldn’t keep that up.”

    Boston’s tying goal was originally disallowed because of goaltender interference on Nick Foligno but overturned on a coach’s challenge after it was ruled that he was nudged into the crease by Carolina defenseman Brett Pesce.

    Boston starting goaltender Linus Ullmark made 28 saves but had to leave with 13:03 left in the third period with an undisclosed upper-body injury. Teammate Connor Clifton had jumped on him to block a shot during a scramble. Jeremy Swayman made six stops in relief.

    Carolina’s Noesen scored at 6:34 in to make it 1-0. And with five minutes left in the period, Kotkaniemi collected the puck near the side of the net after Seth Jarvis‘ shot bounced off the back glass and slipped it inside the post at 15:05.

    Krejci scored for Boston with 31 seconds left in the second.

    Boston came in with a league-high 82 goals in 20 games (4.10 per game), but it was held to relatively few chances despite getting a 5-on-3 power-play advantage early on.

    TAKE NOTE

    The Bruins honored captain Patrice Bergeron, who recorded his 1,000th career point when the team was on the road against Tampa Bay, with a message on the Jumbotron. The crowd gave him a standing ovation.

    Bergeron became just the fourth Bruin to reach the mark, joining Hall of Famers Ray Bourque (1,506), Johnny Bucyk (1,339) and Phil Esposito (1,012).

    UP NEXT

    Hurricanes: Host the Calgary Flames.

    Bruins: Host the Tampa Bay Lightning.

    Predators postpone 2 games due to Nashville water main break

    Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
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    NASHVILLE, Tenn. —  The Nashville Predators postponed two home games because of a water main break that soaked their downtown arena.

    Hours after the Predators decided they couldn’t play against the Colorado Avalanche, the team announced it also postponed the game against the Columbus Blue Jackets. Makeup dates for the two games will be announced later.

    The NHL said the water main break that occurred “significantly impacted the event level” of Bridgestone Arena. Team locker rooms and the ice surface are on the event level.

    Predators President and CEO Sean Henry told reporters that the water in the event level ranged from 3 inches to 3 feet.

    “We’re assessing it right now. We’re remediating it,” Henry said. “The good thing is, the water got shut off, the city responded in a pretty fast manner. I don’t think anyone is ready for things like this the Friday after Thanksgiving.”

    Video posted by a WTVF-TV reporter shows the water puddled up on the main floor’s concourse area and the team store. The team was forced to close the store until further notice, pointing shoppers online for Black Friday specials.

    The Predators’ next home game is now scheduled for Tuesday against the Anaheim Ducks.

    The water issue also resulted in a switch to a different venue for a college hockey game between Northeastern and Western Michigan. They also had been scheduled to play at Bridgestone Arena, a game that was moved to Ford Ice Center Bellevue.

    Rangers trade Ryan Reaves to Wild for 5th-round pick in 2025

    Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
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    ST. PAUL, Minn. — The New York Rangers traded enforcer Ryan Reaves to the Minnesota Wild for a 2025 fifth-round pick.

    Reaves had been a healthy scratch for eight of the past 12 games for the Rangers. He gives struggling Minnesota some extra muscle and a veteran presence.

    The 35-year-old is signed through only the rest of this season at a $1.75 million salary cap hit. He has no points and 12 penalty minutes in 12 games of his second season with New York.

    Reaves has played in 869 NHL regular-season and playoff games for the St. Louis Blues, Pittsburgh Penguins, Vegas Golden Knights and Rangers. He was with the Golden Knights during their inaugural season in 2017-18 when the reached the Stanley Cup Final.

    Toronto’s Morgan Rielly placed on long-term injured reserve

    Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports
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    TORONTO — The Toronto Maple Leafs placed defenseman Morgan Rielly on long-term injured reserve with a knee injury.

    Rielly was hurt in a collision with with New York forward Kyle Palmieri early in the third period of Toronto’s 3-2 overtime loss to the Islanders at home.

    Rielly has no goals and 16 assists in 20 games this season and is averaging 23 minutes of ice time.

    Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe said following practice that the 28-year-old Rielly doesn’t need surgery, adding there’s no firm timeline for his return beyond the minimum 24 days and 10 games required for going on long-term injured reserve.

    Toronto’s defense is also missing Jake Muzzin with a neck injury and T.J. Brodie with an injured oblique.