The Carolina Hurricanes lost 3-0 to the Montreal Canadians at the Bell Centre, effectively snapping both the Hurricanes' three-game win streak and captain Eric Staal's 11-game consecutive point streak. The Hurricanes were playing without defensemen Joni Pitkanen and Tim Gleason (both missing time with lower-body injuries) and without forward Jeff Skinner (upper-body), but they were able to keep the score tied 0-0 going into the third period of play. Brandon Prust, Tomas Plekanec and Max Pacioretty all scored in the third period for the Canadians, while Canadians' starting goaltender Peter Budaj made 17 saves to secure the shutout.
The first period saw both teams held to a lower number of shots (five for Carolina and seven for Montreal). The Hurricanes failed to convert on a late power play to give themselves a 1-0 lead. Although both teams fired more shots on goal in the second period (eight for the Hurricanes and 11 for the Canadians), neither team could find the back of the net due to stellar play by both Cam Ward and Peter Budaj.
The Canadians took a 1-0 lead early in the third period on a goal by Brandon Prust. Prust took a pass from teammate Alex Galchenyuk and beat Cam Ward with a quick wrist shot to give the Canadians a 1-0 lead. The goal was Prust's second of the season and was assisted by Galchhenyuk and Lars Eller.
The Canadians would add two more goals in an 18-second span later in the third period, with the first goal coming at the 12:03 mark when Tomas Plekanec beat Cam Ward for his eighth goal of the year (assisted by Max Pacioretty and Alexi Emelin); the second goal came in at the 12:21 mark when Max Pacioretty dumped a wrist shot in from center ice that took an awkward bounce and beat Cam Ward on the glove side to give the Canadians a 3-0 lead. The goal was Pacioretty's first of the season and was assisted by Davis Desharnais and Rafael Diaz.
The Hurricanes' starting goaltender Cam Ward let in three goals on 26 shots, while Canadians' starting goaltender Peter Budaj saved all 19 shots he faced to record the shutout.
The Carolina Hurricanes take to the ice again Thursday, February 21 at the MTS Centre against the Winnipeg Jets.
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