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Slumping ‘Canes no longer tops in Southeast

Mar 20, 2013, 12:09 PM EDT

Panthers score in Carolina Getty Images

Losers of four straight, the Carolina Hurricanes are no longer the top team in the Southeast Division. That spot now belongs to the Winnipeg Jets, who grabbed it Tuesday with a 3-1 win over the Bruins at the MTS Centre.

The Hurricanes also played last night, dropping a 4-1 decision at home to the NHL’s worst squad, Florida.

That game, by the way, was scoreless after two periods.

“They outworked us. That’s all it comes down to,” Carolina goalie Dan Ellis said. “You look at their lineup, they don’t have any superstars. They’re all injured. They come out, they stick to a game plan, they execute and they work. That’s what beat us.”

Without injured starting goalie Cam Ward, the last thing the Hurricanes needed was to have their offense dry up. But that’s exactly what’s happened, as they’ve managed just five goals during their four-game skid.

Carolina hosts New Jersey tomorrow, then has four days off to prepare for a visit from the Jets.

The rest may serve the ‘Canes well.

“I thought our effort and our compete was there,” captain Eric Staal said after last night’s game.

“We looked a little worn down, but we were staying with our structure and our system – zero-zero game going into the third period – then some mental mistakes and it ends up in the back of your net.”

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