The Hurricanes woke up at the right time on Wednesday in Raleigh. They tied the game late in the third period and Ian Cole played heroes in overtime in a 2-1 win over the New York Rangers.
On the streak leading to the victory net, former Montreal Canadiens Jesperi Kotkaniemi collected his first point of the playoffs.
Sebastian Aho had previously forced an extra period by deceiving the vigilance of Igor Shesterkin with 2 min 23 s to go in the third period. The Hurricanes take a 1-0 lead in this second-round series.
Lafrenière stands out
Alexis Lafrenière did well in the first round, collecting two goals and four points in seven games. As Rangers imposed their rules in the first half, he was the spark that sparked the opening goal.
The Quebecer intercepted a bad relay from Tony DeAngelo in the neutral zone to bring himself into enemy territory and make a perfect pass to Filip Chytil. The latter released on reception and Antti Raanta simply did not have time to make his move.
Lafrenière thus became only the fifth player in Rangers history to collect at least five points in a single spring tournament before turning 20. Former Habs Niklas Sundstrom (1996) is another.
Raanta nevertheless maintained the form he displayed in the first round, so that he deprived Chytil of another goal with the tip of the pad. He thus blocked 27 of the 28 pucks directed at him.
After a complicated first round, Shesterkin also found his bearings. Not without the help of his posts, he was heading for a first career shutout in the playoffs, but he was unable to put the finishing touches. He made 24 saves.
Game 2 of this series is Friday in Carolina, before moving to New York, where Game 3 is at 3:30 p.m. Sunday.