The Hurricanes won the NHL’s opener after more than a four-month hiatus Saturday in Toronto and in the new play-off preliminary round series format. The NHL is back, too. Two days after the NBA, the North American Big Hockey League kicked off its season on Saturday, when the Carolina Hurricanes and New York Rangers put down their skates on the Toronto ice, after a four-month hiatus caused by the coronavirus. In the empty immensity of the Scotiabank Arena (compensated by audience noises recorded on TV), from the first moments there were severe charges in the middle of the ice, a fight as the public likes them on this side- there from the Atlantic. And a goal for Carolina, superb, signed Jaccob Slavin after a short minute of play, a shot in the top corner of Henrik Lundqvist after a sumptuous cross pass from Teuvo Teravainen.
Dominators (37 shots on target at 26), the Hurricanes, 6th in the Eastern Conference, logically won (3-2) over Rangers (11th) slow at the start, authors of only four shots in the first third. Carolina takes a first step in this series of preliminary round of the play-offs in the best of five matches, unusual format set up in this exceptional context. We will therefore have mainly talked about sport during this first official post-confinement match. Unlike the NBA, no one knelt down during the two anthems, with the American and the Canadian played in honor of the host nation. It was announced after the warm-up matches, also predictable in a League deemed more conservative and composed overwhelmingly of white players, even if the NHL made efforts to show its solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. Four other matches are on the program for this evening of recovery, New York Islanders – Florida and the prestigious poster Pittsburgh – Montreal in Toronto, Edmonton – Chicago and Calgary – Winnipeg in the second “bubble”, in Edmonton.