Aho, Burns and Kochetkov lead Hurricanes to 4-0 win over Lightning

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Sebastian Aho and Brent Burns each had a goal and an assist, Pyotr Kochetkov stopped 23 shots for his fifth career shutout and the Carolina Hurricanes beat the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-0 on Saturday night.

Teuvo Teravainen and Stefan Noesen also scored as Carolina won for the sixth time in eight games. The Hurricanes rebounded after a 5-2 loss at Florida the previous night.

“We played the way we wanted to,” said defenseman Brady Skjei, who assisted on Burns’ goal. “Last night wasn’t the way we wanted to end it — we wanted to end this road trip on a high note. Everyone bought in and we played a really solid 60 minutes.”

Jonas Johansson, who shut out the Hurricanes in their first meeting, made 28 saves for the Lightning.

Tampa Bay played without forward Nikita Kucherov, who entered the game second in the NHL with 23 points, because of illness. His absence showed, as Tampa Bay struggled to generate offense for long stretches.

“He’s one of the best, if not the best, especially on the power play,” defenseman Victor Hedman said. “We weren’t prepared for that coming in. It was kind of a last-second thing. Guys stepped up and did their best, but we couldn’t get it done. Can’t replace a guy like (Kucherov).”

Kochetkov, who was 0-3-0 this season and took the loss in Tampa Bay’s 3-0 win against Carolina on Oct. 24, was sharp when he had to be and got plenty of help from his teammates, who controlled play for most of the game.

“He was solid,” Carolina coach Rod Brind’Amour said. “He looked like nothing was going to get by him tonight.”

Carolina took a 1-0 lead when Teravainen beat Johansson with a power-play one-timer from the top of the right circle 3:09 into the game.

Aho made it 2-0 at 4:32 of the second, beating Johansson from the left of the slot for his second goal in two nights.

The Hurricanes limited the Lightning to three shots on goal in the middle period.

“I think at times you just have to simplify your game and play a little bit more north-south,” Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. “We played a little too much east-west today. Carolina plays a very deliberate game, they were just a little bit quicker than us tonight and it cost us.”

Burns tipped in a pass from defense partner Brady Skjei with 8:40 left in the third to put Carolina ahead by three. It was the 248th goal of his career, moving into 10th place all-time among NHL defensemen.

“He’s been around forever, but there’s a reason for it,” Brind’Amour said of the 38-year-old. “You can’t be around that long and play at that high a level without putting in the work, the dedication to your craft. He’s one of the best ever at it.”

Noesen celebrated playing his 300th NHL game by scoring on a deflection with 2:06 to play.


Hurricanes: Host Philadelphia on Wednesday night.

Lightning: At St. Louis on Tuesday night.


AP NHL: https://www.apnews.com/hub/NHL