Three Keys to the New York Rangers Defeating the Carolina Hurricanes in Round Two

Mar 12, 2024; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Hurricanes goaltender Pyotr Kochetkov (52)
Mar 12, 2024; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Hurricanes goaltender Pyotr Kochetkov (52) / James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports
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Deadline Acquisitions

The traditionally conservative Carolina Hurricanes and typically aggressive New York Rangers seemed to swap roles at this deadline. Carolina went out to get the big fish in Jake Guentzel, adding Evgeny Kuznetsov as a depth piece. While his totals haven't rebounded back to where he would like them, he is still a dangerous player the Rangers will have to try to contain. 

On the flipside, New York added Jack Roslovic and Alex Wennberg. Both have added another dimension to the roster while filling holes, but they are not cut from the same cloth as Jake Guentzel. They will need to take a big step forward to help the Rangers overcome the Hurricanes in front of them. This burden will fall more on Roslovic, and that top line than Wennberg, but Wennberg will have his task. 

Roslovic, Kreider, and Zibanejad must wake up and attack the Hurricanes to force them into their zone. If Carolina is prevented from getting on the forecheck, you can take the sting out of their system. The cracks appear when teams can build a strong cycle game and open holes in the roster. If the Rangers top line can do this, they'll get a chance to end this series quickly. 

Wennberg's line must shut the Canes down in the offensive zone. When the Canes get into their flow, they hit teams in waves. It makes them a powerful second-period club with the long change, and they can change on the fly to stay fresh while pinning a team on its end. If New York can find a way to break the Canes' sustained pressure, they'll find a way to be okay, but it's always easier said than done.