RALEIGH — Coming off their worst effort of the season, it was no surprise the Hurricanes came out angry on Saturday afternoon.
That was bad news for their opponent.
Carolina rediscovered its scoring touch and took its frustrations out on the visiting Canucks, winning 4-1 in front of 17,435 Saturday afternoon in Raleigh.
“We knew we needed to have a bounce-back game, bounce-back effort,” Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour said. “We were unhappy with the game before … and that’s the way we need to play. It’s not an easy game to play, 82 of these in the regular season. To play like that, it’s hard.”
The line of Andrei Svechnikov, Vincent Trocheck and Martin Necas combined speed, physicality and finesse to set the tone for the Hurricanes, who were coming home an embarrassing 6-0 loss at home to Columbus on Thursday.
With the game tied 1-1 after the first period, the trio factored in a pair of second period goals that put Carolina in control.
On the first, Svechnikov won a battle in the corner and got the puck to Necas. Necas returned the puck to Svechnikov, who one-touched a pass to Trocheck for a goal and 2-1 lead 62 seconds into the middle frame.
Then Necas — celebrating his 23rd birthday — got a goal of his own.
Svechnikov carried the puck through the neutral zone and bounced off a hit by Canucks defenseman Brad Hunt.
“I was really focusing on that,” Svechnikov, who finished with two assists, said of playing a physical game. “Go there the first shift and try to find a hit or something, just get myself going.”
He then passed the puck to Necas, who placed a perfect shot that rattled around the net and in for a 3-1 Carolina lead at 4:49 of the second.
“If we play hard, we get some chances to show our skill and it pays off,” Necas said. “So we’ve got to keep doing that.”
The Hurricanes also leaned on their league-best penalty kill, which limited the Canucks to just five shots on goal in five power plays and extended its perfect streak to 11 games and 35 straight kills.
“It’s huge. Our guys, I think they’re one of the best penalty kills in the league,” Svechnikov said. “Everyone blocking shots, helping Freddie to save some pucks. It’s a great effort.”
The Hurricanes and Canucks traded goals in the opening period.
Carolina’s power play got them on the board first, with Teuvo Teravainen setting up Sebastian Aho for a one-timer that cleanly beat Thatcher Demko (29 saves) at 8:17 of the first period.
Bo Horvat snuck a wrist shot past Andersen at 13:24 to tie the game. It was the only shot the Canucks got by Andersen, who finished with 30 saves and improved to 14-3-5 against Vancouver in his career. He’s allowed one or fewer goals in 12 of his 22 career appearances against the Canucks.
“He made some huge saves today,” Necas said.
Notes: Steven Lorentz closed the scoring with his sixth goal of the season, redirecting a Brady Skjei shot past Demko. … The top line of Aho (9:46), Teravainen (10:00) and Seth Jarvis (9:42) played the fewest even strength minutes of the Carolina forwards. … The Hurricanes are 10-2-1 in their last 13 games, 25-8-2 on the season and tied with the Panthers for the best point percentage (.743) in the NHL.