Carolina Hurricanes turn to 42-year-old Dave Ayres in emergency situation

TORONTO — The Carolina Hurricanes had to turn to an emergency goaltender on Saturday night in Toronto against the Maple Leafs.

Carolina was forced to go with 42-year-old Dave Ayres in net midway through the second period after both James Reimer and Petr Mrazek left with injuries.

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Ayres, from Whitby, Ont., has backed up both the Toronto Marlies and Charlotte Checkers of the American Hockey League in the past. He practises with the Toronto organization when needed and hit the ice in blue and white equipment along with a Marlies mask on Saturday.

"So pumped for Dave! One of the best, hardest working guys i’ve met during my time in Toronto. Making my old gear look good!," Marlies goalie Kasimir Kaskisuo tweeted.

Reimer started but left just 6:10 into the first period with a lower-body injury after Toronto's Zach Hyman shoved a Hurricanes defenceman on top of him in the crease.

Mrazek came in, but also had to leave after a collision with Leafs forward Kyle Clifford while attempting to play the puck near the face-off dot in Carolina's zone in the second. Mrazek was listed by the team with an upper-body injury.

Both Hyman and Clifford were given penalties.

Carolina was leading 3-1 when Ayres took over.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 22, 2020.

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