The Hurricanes are in the nation's capital to take on the Washington Capitals tonight for another important game for both teams. The Caps have lost four straight at home and the Hurricanes have lost two straight on the road, so one of those streaks will come to an end.
This is the fifth of six meetings between the teams this season with each club winning two so far. The Canes have won the last two, a 3-1 contest at the RBC in December, and most recently, a 5-2 win at the Verizon Center earlier this month.
Last season Carolina finished with a 4-3-1 record against the Caps and Eric Staal led all Hurricanes with eight points, (3g 5a), in the series.
The Capitals have won their last two games while on the road,.(against Nashville and Philadelphia) with Jose Theodore back in net. Expect to see him again tonight.
Cam Ward will make his 18th straight start for Carolina.
|2008 - Cam Ward||57||3291||30||22||4||10||137||2.50||1572||1435||.913||5|
|2008 - Jose Theodore||47||2706||26||14||4||2||126||2.79||1292||1166||.902||1|
The Caps are led by the best player in the NHL, Alexander Ovechkin, but he has plenty of help. Alexander Semin has always been a Canes killer, Nicklas Backstrom is dangerous, and Mike Green is one of the top defensive scorers in the league.
|2008 - Alex Ovechkin||66||48||39||87||12||68||15||1||10||1||435||11.0|
|2008 - Nicklas Backstrom||69||18||54||72||13||44||10||0||1||0||145||12.4|
|2008 - Alexander Semin||50||28||37||65||29||65||5||0||6||1||173||16.2|
|2008 - Mike Green||56||23||35||58||23||56||16||1||2||1||202||11.4|
For more information about the Caps, check out Japers' Rink.
The Hurricanes are led by Eric Staal and Ray Whitney. Rod Brind'Amour has goals in four straight games and points in five straight. Whitney has points in three straight.
|2008 - Eric Staal||70||32||28||60||4||48||11||1||8||0||321||10.0|
|2008 - Ray Whitney||70||22||38||60||-9||26||7||0||1||2||190||11.6|
Joni Pitkanen missed the last game with an upper body injury, but is expected to give it a go tonight. The lines will probably be the same except for the fourth, Coach Maurice hinted that he might switch things up there. I will guess that Jokinen will remain at center, with perhaps Bayda and Conboy on the wings.
I will be at the game tonight, so I will be sure to leave any updated information right here. Of course the Live Game Thread will be open as usual about 30 minutes before game time.
The contest will be broadcast locally by FS Carolinas starting at 7PM.