Hurricanes ‘bad, bad, bad, bad’ in 6-0 loss to Columbus

Carolina looked lost coming its latest extended break

Blue Jackets forward Patrik Laine celebrates his goal with teammate Vladislav Gavrikov during Columbus' 6-0 win Thursday over the Hurricanes in Raleigh. (Karl B. DeBlaker / AP Photo)

RALEIGH — The last time the Hurricanes were down four goals to the Columbus Blue Jackets, a goalie change and a barrage of goals led them to a surprising victory.

There was no such magic Thursday night.


Yegor Chinakhov’s second goal of the game at 5:03 of the third period triggered the same move by Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour — Frederik Andersen went to the bench and Jack LaFontaine came in to make his NHL debut.

Thirty seconds later, LaFontaine got his “Welcome to the NHL” moment when Cole Sillinger scored on a breakaway in the first shot the 24-year-old faced.

Instead of a comeback, the Hurricanes finished arguably their worst effort of the season with a 6-0 loss In front of 15,979 Thursday at PNC Arena.

“We came out flat, stayed flat and continued to be flat,” Hurricanes captain Jordan Staal said. “It was embarrassing. I feel bad for our goalies. I really feel bad for Jack — it went bad there.”

In their first game since Saturday, caused by a late postponement of Tuesday’s scheduled game in Philadelphia, the Hurricanes looked like a team that hadn’t played in a month rather than four days.

That manifested itself in several breakaway chances for the Blue Jackets — many that wound up in the back of the Carolina net.

“It’s not just playing the way we’re supposed to play. … We’re gonna learn from this,” Staal said.

After Andersen was lifted after allowing four goals on 32 shots — several of which were breakaways — LaFontaine came in less than a week after leaving the University of Minnesota to sign with the team. His reward was two breakaways — one by Sillinger, another by Jack Roslovic — that ended up behind him. He made just one save on three shots faced.

“There’s no excuse,” Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour said of the team’s performance. “Yeah, we weren’t sharp or we weren’t going to be lights out, but that was not good. Not a good effort by pretty much everybody.”

Brind’Amour took the blame for the performance, saying he “should have done something differently than usual to get them ready” during the team’s unexpected four-day break.

“It was bad, bad, bad, bad.”

The game didn’t get out of hand until the third period, but Columbus started to build its game early on.

Defenseman Jake Bean — playing his first game in Raleigh since Carolina traded him to Columbus in the offseason — got a point shot through a maze of players and on net, and the Blue Jackets had two rebound chances before Emil Bemstrom swept the puck in for his first goal of the season and a 1-0 lead at 8:43 of the first period.

The Blue Jackets extended their lead to two just past the game’s midway point.

After Hurricanes defenseman Tony DeAngelo couldn’t finish a backdoor chance in the Columbus end, Chinakhov was set loose on the first of his breakaway goals double the Blue Jackets’ lead at 11:56 of the second.

Any chance of a comeback seemed to fade away when Patrick Laine one-timed a shot past Andersen at 4:26 of the third. Thirty-seven seconds later, Chinakhov was away on his second breakaway and chased Andersen.

“We’re not going to go into full panic mode over here about one game,” said DeAngelo, who received a 10-minute misconduct with 6:40 left in the game for arguing with officials about a missed tripping call. “I think we stunk tonight, but we know how good of a team we are. We’ve just got to start showing it.”

The team has a practice Friday before hosting a matinee against the visiting Canucks on Saturday.

“This will be easy tomorrow because I’ll have everybody’s attention. Trust me,” Brind’Amour said. “I don’t need to say too much.”

Notes: Sebastian Aho and Andersen were named to the Metropolitan Division All-Star Team, which will be captained by Washington’s Alex Ovechkin and coached by Brind’Amour. … Brady Skjei played in his 400th career NHL game. … Hurricanes play-by-play announcer Mike Maniscalco missed the game after testing positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday. Tripp Tracy moved into the play-by-play seat, while Shane Willis provided cold commentary on a radio-only broadcast because ESPN was having a national television game.