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SportLuke DeCock: Hurricanes' first priority: Salvage something, anything from this series

17:15  16 may  2019
17:15  16 may  2019 Source:   latimes.com

Luke DeCock: Familiar position for Hurricanes, albeit with unfamiliar stakes

Luke DeCock: Familiar position for Hurricanes, albeit with unfamiliar stakes The Carolina Hurricanes look to rebound.

They must salvage something from this series . The sweepers of the sweepers must avoid being swept. Follow beat writer Chip Alexander, columnist Luke DeCock and our visual journalists wherever the Hurricanes go in the playoffs, at home and on the road.

The Hurricanes may be younger now, but they still said similar things in 2002 and 2006 and 2009. There are no guarantees, especially in the Metropolitan Division. Related stories from Raleigh News & Observer. luke - decock . Hurricanes ’ first priority : Salvage something , anything from this series .

Luke DeCock: Hurricanes' first priority: Salvage something, anything from this series© Grant Halverson/Getty Images North America/TNS Calvin de Haan of the Carolina Hurricanes celebrates with his teammates after scoring a goal against the Boston Bruins during the second period in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals at PNC Arena in Raleigh, N.C., on May 14, 2019. (Grant Halverson/Getty Images/TNS) **FOR USE WITH THIS STORY ONLY** RALEIGH, N.C. - Wherever the Carolina Hurricanes are headed, whether it's into the yawning void of the offseason or back to Boston, their mission Thursday is simple. They must salvage something from this series. The sweepers of the sweepers must avoid being swept.

Even if the odds against the Hurricanes are staggering - four teams in NHL history have come back from 3-0 deficits, although Justin Williams played on one of them - there is still something to be gained from extending this series, however temporarily.

Luke DeCock: It has all gone so wrong for the Hurricanes, so quickly

Luke DeCock: It has all gone so wrong for the Hurricanes, so quickly People talk about pushing the panic button like it's always a bad thing. When things are desperate but not quite dire, there's a lot to be said for staying the course, pushing a little harder, renovating instead of demolishing. Then there are those moments when there aren't any other options, when desperation leaves you no way out. This isn't poker, where you can fold and live to play another day. The Carolina Hurricanes are running out of tomorrows. The even-keel Hurricanes need to find the panic button and push it, because this isn’t working.

NC State and UNC football will have one of their games broadcast exclusively on the ACC Network during the first three weeks of the 2019 regular season. Luke DeCock . Hurricanes ’ first priority : Salvage something , anything from this series .

At some point in every playoff series , the Canes team captain noted, “Somebody’s going to give and say it’s too hard.” The Canes didn’t do that in their first series against the Washington Capitals. Luke DeCock . Hurricanes ’ first priority : Salvage something , anything from this series .

One win keeps the door to the improbable open and would teach a young team a valuable lesson about persistence, especially after Tuesday's furious opening charge came to naught. A loss will dampen the excitement of this playoff run, although perhaps only temporarily. Posterity records that the Hurricanes were swept by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the conference finals in 2009, but all anyone talks about now is getting there.

"We're just trying to win one game, that's all it is," Williams said. "I can't sugarcoat it. This isn't an ideal situation."

The journey this team has taken over the past four months and change feels destined to last longer than this, but the Bruins care not about that, and have visions of a break themselves ahead of the Stanley Cup finals, just as the Hurricanes had one before this series after sweeping the New York Islanders, just as the Islanders had one before the second round after sweeping the Penguins.

Hurricanes hoping extended time off will help injured players

Hurricanes hoping extended time off will help injured players With the Carolina Hurricanes waiting for their next playoff opponent after sweeping the New York Islanders in the second round, the team is finally getting the rest it needs after a very physical postseason. After playing 11 games in 23 days, the Hurricanes took the entire weekend off and are expected to pick up activity on Monday, according to News & Observer’s Luke DeCock. The Hurricanes are hoping the time off could help in the return of a few injured players, though there are few updates on those players. There is no word on the status of forward Micheal Ferland.

Luke DeCock . Hurricanes ’ first priority : Salvage something , anything from this series . Even if the odds against the Carolina Hurricanes are staggering, down 3-0 to the Boston Bruins there is still plenty to be gained from extending the Eastern Conference finals, however temporarily.

Luke DeCock . Hurricanes bring their best in Game 3, and it’s not good enough. Could have turned a series around, anyway. The Hurricanes gave it their best shot Tuesday, right off the hop. The Hurricanes had to get something out of that first . They poured too much into it to come away with

Maybe the Bruins ought to reconsider.

Zdeno Chara and Tuukka Rask are already resting, given the day off Wednesday, and there's no question the goalie has earned it. The Hurricanes' inability to figure him out - never mind all the open nets they missed Tuesday - has at least one obvious parallel in franchise history.

Rask's impenetrability recalls Jose Theodore in 2002, when the Hurricanes spent the first three and two-thirds games of that series against the Montreal Canadiens banging their heads against the wall until they broke through in the Miracle at Molson. Theodore was never the same after that, in the series or in his career.

The Hurricanes at least squeaked out one win against Theodore early in that series, and were only down 2-1 instead of 3-0, but it'll take something Miracle at Molson-esque to unravel Rask and turn this series around. But that crazy night in Montreal, and the blowouts that followed to close out the series, is as much proof strange things can happen as Williams' comeback from 3-0 down with the Los Angeles Kings in 2014. If anything, Theodore was flying higher than Rask is now, on his way to the Hart and Vezina trophies, arguably the best player in the game until everything fell apart in 23 minutes.

Chara out for Game 4 of Bruins-Hurricanes series

Chara out for Game 4 of Bruins-Hurricanes series The Boston Bruins will be without their captain as they try to close out their Eastern Conference final series with the Carolina Hurricanes. Zdeno Chara is out for Thursday’s Game 4 of the series with an undisclosed issue. The Bruins captain was not on the ice for warmups before the game, and John Moore was. The Providence Journal’s Mark Divver reported that the scratch was more "precautionary." Word is Chara scratch is more precautionary than serious — Mark Divver (@MarkDivver) May 16, 2019 WBZ’s Dan Roche had been all over the situation.

The latest Tweets from Luke DeCock (@LukeDeCock). News & Observer sports columnist. Penn grad. Southeast Div beat alum. Evanston native. Evertonian. NYC Marathon finisher. [email protected] #readlocal. News & Observer, Raleigh, NC.

Luke DeCock . Some personal news to share: I ’m not going anywhere. NC State beat writer Joe Giglio and columnist Luke DeCock talk about UNC's Roy Williams and the Dean Dome crowds, plus bowl games, Wolfpack coach Mark Luke DeCock . Still a chance for Aho to turn this series around.

Even in the absence of the miraculous, one or two wins can go a long way. The Hurricanes were down 3-0 to the New Jersey Devils in 2001, long before this building had any kind of a reputation. They caught the Devils napping in Game 4, picked up a road win in Game 5 and came home for an end-of-game standing ovation that set the tone for everything that followed over the next five years.

Which is a long way to say, something good can come even of a loss Thursday, especially for a team this young that would be positioned well to springboard into the future. But similar postulations were made in 2002 and 2006 and 2009 to varying degrees - more about the win-now ability of more veteran rosters - and all three of those teams were at home this time a year later.

Better to live in the moment and try to salvage something of this. One win may or may not lead to another, and another, and another, but the Hurricanes, having come this far, owe it to themselves to go out on a better note than this.

Visit The News & Observer (Raleigh, N.C.) at www.newsobserver.com

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Luke DeCock: Hurricanes' first priority: Salvage something, anything from this series

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