Hurricanes Radio Voice: Pressure Is On Capitals

Can Carolina play spoiler in Game 7 on Wednesday? Alec Campbell says yes.

April 24, 2019 - 7:50 am
Alex Ovechkin Washington Capitals

USA Today Images


The two best words in hockey are Game 7, and the Capitals and Hurricanes will play one Wednesday at 7:30p.m. ET, as their first-round playoff series is tied 3-3. The home team is 6-0 in this series, but don’t be surprised if the Hurricanes play spoiler in the nation’s capital.

“I feel like a lot of the pressure is probably on Washington to close things out,” Hurricanes radio host Alec Campbell said on Ferrall on the Bench. “They don’t want to lose in front of their home fans in Game 7 coming off a Stanley Cup championship last year against a team that they’re not supposed to lose to, and a team that they beat four times in the Hurricanes. But this hasn’t been a situation where the Hurricanes are hanging on by a thread here. They’re playing very competitive hockey, especially in the 5-on-5. If they can keep it in a 5-on-5 situation and avoid taking penalties more than anything, they got a real shot.”

Carolina lost the first two games of the series but has won three of the last four to force Game 7. The home-road splits, however, have been jarring. The Hurricanes have allowed just three goals at home but 14 on the road, including six in an embarrassing 6-0 loss in Game 5 on Saturday.

Carolina will need a clutch performance from Justin Williams, who has 14 points in eight career Game 7s.

“It’s hard to go against that,” Campbell said. “He’s only had one Game 7 in his career where he was held pointless. I think most professional athletes relish the big-game situations. I think that’s a lot of the reason it’s gotten them there, but not all of them are able to take advantage of it like Justin Williams has been.”

Williams has one goal and two assist in the series.

“Look, he’s not played his best hockey over the course of this series so far,” Campbell said. “He did finally get on the scoresheet in Game 6 the other night with a big goal that put them up 4-2, but he seems to have a knack for productivity, getting on the scoresheet in the big games. Hopefully Game 6 can be a catalyst for him, and if he is able to score a couple of goals, they have a chance.”

Slowing down Alex Ovechkin, of course, will also be key. Ovechkin led the NHL with 51 goals this season and has four goals and four assists in the series.

I’me extremely worried about Ovechkin,” Campbell said. “He’s got eight points in the series already. He’s a super-dangerous player. I’m always worried about Alex Ovechkin.”

Click below to listen to Campbell’s interview in its entirety.