Hurricanes Eliminate the Devils in 5 Games to Make the Stanley Cup Conference Finals

Carolina Hurricanes right wing Andrei Svechnikov in 2019.
Carolina Hurricanes right wing Andrei Svechnikov in 2019. Photo by Chris Brown/CSM/Shutterstock (10447970q)

The Carolina Hurricanes are the first team in the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs to secure a spot in the conference finals. The Hurricanes wrapped up their second-round series against the New Jersey Devils with a 3-2 overtime win on Thursday. 

The Hurricanes will now wait for the conclusion of the series between the Florida Panthers and the Toronto Maple Leafs to learn about their opponent in the Eastern Conference Finals.

The Devils, who were blown out in Game 4 in a 1-6 loss, showed signs of life on Thursday by holding the lead twice. However, the Canes were determined to end the series after five games and managed to get back both times to force overtime.

In overtime, it was Carolina who showed more mental toughness. Seven minutes into the period, Jesper Fast deflected a shot by Jesperi Kotkaniemi into the goal and secured the Canes’ return to the conference finals for the first time since 2018–19.

Speaking with the reporters after the game, head coach Rod Brind’Amour said that the team would take some time to enjoy the achievement before setting their focus on the next opponent.

“We’re stacking memories here, and they’re giving them to me, too. So it’s pretty special,” said Rod Brind’Amour.

Gunner's favorite movies are Pulp Fiction, Iron Man (just the first one), and every James Bond film ever made. He's learning TV and cinema and hoping to always enjoy movies as he does now.