Carolina Hurricanes vs. Minnesota Wild Pick & Prediction JANUARY 21st 2024

It has been a strong homestand for the Carolina Hurricanes. They would like to cap it in style.

The six-game home stretch comes to a close with Sunday’s contest against the Minnesota Wild in Raleigh, N.C.

The Hurricanes had their full group of skaters available by the weekend. Forward Martin Necas returned from a five-game, injury-related absence to provide a goal and an assist Friday night in the 4-2 victory against the Detroit Red Wings.

Carolina coach Rod Brind’Amour said Necas was the best player on the ice. He certainly was active, recording six shots on goal — at least twice as any other player in the game.

“Good to be back, feels good,” Necas said. “Just have to keep getting better.”

The Hurricanes are 8-1-1 in their last 10 games. That includes a 3-1-1 record so far on the homestand. Brock Faber recorded a hat trick in the Wild’s 6-4 victory at Florida on Friday. Minnesota scored its first five goals on power plays before finding the empty net for the last tally.

Yet, the Wild might be limping into this finale of a three-game road trip. Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury exited the game with an upper-body injury around the midway mark of the second period and center Connor Dewar was hurt as well, logging only nine shifts. Minnesota might need to replenish parts of the roster.

“I don’t know,” coach John Hynes said. “They could be good. They could be fine.”

Minnesota didn’t have all its skaters on the ice at the beginning of Friday night’s game. Frederick Gaudreau sat out because of an upper-body injury.

It has been an uneven stretch for the Wild, who have given up 17 goals in the last four games – and that includes a 4-0 shutout victory over the New York Islanders on Monday.

The Hurricanes could have more options in net, though Antti Raanta likely will start for the third straight game and the fourth time in the homestand.

Carolina has two goalies on injured reserve. On Friday, the Hurricanes claimed goalie Spencer Martin off waivers from the Columbus Blue Jackets. He wasn’t in the lineup against Detroit.

The Hurricanes held the Red Wings to 12 shots, the fewest for an opponent this season. That didn’t provide much of an opportunity to evaluate Raanta, who holds a 10-6-2 record.

“I didn’t see much, which was good,” Brind’Amour said.

Production has come from many sources for the Hurricanes.

Carolina forward Jordan Martinook will carry a career-best four-game goal streak into Sunday’s game. He eclipsed the 600-game mark for his career earlier in the homestand.

“He plays the same way every night,” Brind’Amour said.

Winger Andrei Svechnikov posted the game-winning goal Friday night to go with an assist. He has seven multi-point games in his last 11 outings.

Svechnikov’s goal in the Detroit game came on Carolina’s lone power play of the night. Since the beginning of December, the Hurricanes have the NHL’s best power-play mark by converting on 36.2 percent of their man-advantage chances.

The Hurricanes are 13-4-4 at the midway mark of their home schedule.

–Field Level Media

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