Andrei Svechnikov had his first NHL hat trick and the Carolina Hurricanes moved to within one win of advancing into the Stanley Cup Playoffs after defeating the New York Rangers 4-1 in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Qualifiers at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto on Monday.
Sebastian Aho had three assists, all on Svechnikov’s goals. Jordan Martinook scored and Petr Mrazek made 23 saves to give Carolina, the No. 6 seed in the Eastern Conference, a 2-0 lead in the best-of-5 series.
Teams with a 2-0 lead in an NHL best-of-5 postseason series are 55-1 (.982 winning percentage). The Hurricanes have yet to trail against the Rangers.
Game 3 is in Toronto, the hub city for the Eastern Conference, on Tuesday (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN360, TVAS, MSG, FS-CR).
Artemi Panarin scored and Henrik Lundqvist made 30 saves for the Rangers, No. 11 in the East, in his second straight start because Igor Shesterkin is still day to day. As part of the NHL Return to Play Plan, a team is not permitted to disclose player injury or illness information.
Svechnikov gave the Hurricanes a 1-0 lead at 4:32 of the first period, scoring on a quick shot from the left circle that beat Lundqvist on the short side.
The Rangers tied it with Panarin’s 5-on-3 power-play goal at 12:05.
Svechnikov scored again at 1:11 of the second period, three seconds into a power play, making it 2-1 with a high, far-side one-timer from the top of the right circle. The 20-year-old forward is the 10th player in NHL history with at least two multigoal games in the postseason before his 21st birthday. He also scored two goals against the Washington Capitals in Game 1 of the 2019 Eastern Conference First Round.
Martinook scored 1:11 later to make it 3-1 Hurricanes.
Svechnikov finished on a 2-on-1 with Aho to make it 4-1 at 14:02 of the third period.