RALEIGH — Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour said the first two periods of Friday’s game against the Flyers were among the best his team has played this season.
The third period was among the worst.
Carolina couldn’t hold onto a one-goal lead, allowing two goals in the third period to Philadelphia in a 2-1 loss in front of a sellout crowd at PNC Arena.
“It was one of those nights that just nothing was working for us as far as getting rewarded for what was going on,” Brind’Amour said. “And then we kind of messed up and it went in our net.”
Zack MacEwen redirected a Justin Braun shot past Frederik Andersen to give the Flyers the lead just past the midway point of the third period as Philadelphia overcame two dominant periods by Carolina to rally and hand the Hurricanes their second loss of the season.
“I think we got a little complacent,” Hurricanes center Vincent Trocheck said. “We were making some plays that we didn’t need to make up 1-nothing. That’s kind of our M.O. is closing out games. Tonight, we got a little too cute. … We just stay playing the same way we were in the first two periods I think we win that game.”
Philadelphia had tied the game 1-1 at 4:06 of the third when Joel Farabee won a race against Josh Leivo — playing his first game with the Hurricanes — to a dump-in and beat Andersen (26 saves) five hole to knot the score.
“Good play by them,” Brind’Amour said. “We had the exact same play won the power play and we just lose it, and they put (there’s) in.”
The Hurricanes couldn’t muster more than one past resurgent Flyers goalie Carter Hart, who made 39 saves and stymied Carolina’s power play — sometimes with the help of the goalposts behind him.
“It’s tough to take moral victories away,” Trocheck said of the power play, which had nine shots on net. “You’re out there to score goals. We are creating a lot of chances, I feel like, but those got to go in.”
The Hurricanes only got two past Hart — one that counted and one that didn’t.
After Andersen and Hart spent the first half of the game stonewalling the opposition, Carolina finally broke through during the 11th minute of the second period.
The play started in the defensive zone with Brendan Smith, exhausted at the end of a 94-second shift, boxed out the Flyers in front of Andersen and got the puck out of the Carolina end. The Hurricanes briefly lost and then regained control, and Jordan Staal took a shot from the high slot wound up to Hart’s right. Jesper Fast’s centering attempt fluttered in the air and was batted into the net by Steven Lorentz for his second goal of the season and a 1-0 lead.
“I didn’t know if it was gonna be a high stick or not, but I just kind of took a swing at it and fortunately it went off my shaft and went in,” Lorentz said. “But I think that all starts with good play in our D zone leading to the O zone, good forecheck pressure, and good things happen when you go to the net.”
Carolina seemed to extend the lead to two just 45 seconds when an Andrei Svechnikov shot hit the post and went in off Seth Jarvis’ stick at 11:52 of the second, but Jarvis’ attempt to stay onside failed and the goal was overturned after the Flyers challenged.
“We just didn’t get enough out of the periods,” Brind’Amour said of only putting one on the board in the first 40 minutes. “We knew they were going to have push — you’re not going to dominate three periods. … We didn’t do enough the first two periods to allow for having a little wiggle room.”
Notes: The Hurricanes played without skaters Brett Pesce, Nino Niederreiter and Martin Necas, along with Antti Raanta. … Trocheck was called for three penalties — one for arguing the first penalty against him — for the first time in his career. … Leivo played 5:53 and was on the ice for both Flyers goals.