The Carolina Hurricanes resume their four-game road swing with a stop in Boston tonight. The Canes were able to notch their first win of the season last Wednesday against the Bruins and Tim Thomas in Raleigh. Tonight Coach Claude Julien will go with the younger half of the B's potent tandem, giving the nod to Tuukka Rask.
Chuck Kaiton was on satellite radio's XM Home Ice program this afternoon and confirmed the Canes starting lines. Jeff Skinner will be re-united with the two Finnish forwards, Jussi Jokinen and Tuomo Ruutu. Captain Eric Staal will be flanked by Alexei Ponikarovsky and Chad LaRose on the top line. Cam Ward will start in goal.
The Hurricanes (2-2-1) have a two-game win streak on the line and look to get above the .500 mark. Boston (2-3) went into Chicago last weekend and handed the Blackhawks a loss by a score of 3-2.
Rookie wing Zac Dalpe is out with a lower body injury, and Brett Sutter, who wears jersey number 42, was called up yesterday from Charlotte to fill his spot on the 4th line. This will be Sutter42's second appearance with the Canes, but the first of this season.
Here are the Hurricanes forward lines:
For the defense, the pairing remain the same as in the last two games, which of course are both wins.
"I think Tomas has played like our group," Canes coach Paul Maurice said. "We all felt a little bit of a slow start, but there was still a lot of good and then in the last couple of games. Our power-play numbers aren't incredible but we've scored five and he's a big part of that."
- When Joe Corvo was in Raleigh last week, Kurt Dusterberg had a chance to ask him about the trade over the summer and acclimating to a new team in the northeast. Corvo moves on - Kurt Dusterberg, HurricanesBeat.com
From this morning's N&O
- Canes better at faceoffs - Chip Alexander, NewsObserver.com Rod Brind'Amour was long considered one of the best faceoff men in the NHL. Now a Carolina assistant coach, one of Brind'Amour's duties is to help make the Canes' centers more effective on faceoffs.
- Skinner still shining - DeCock - NewsObserver.com Eric Staal is the captain. Cam Ward is the backbone. They're still No. 1 and 1A in the Carolina Hurricanes' pecking order. With every game he plays, Jeff Skinner is closing in on them.
Bruins top centerman David Krejci is recovering from an undisclosed injury, and defenseman Adam McQuaid availability will be a game time decision. He re-injured his neck when he fell against the boards at the RBC Center last week. Tyler Seguin will be centering the B's line. If McQuaid plays, he would replace Bartkowski.
From CSNNE.com, here is the lineup the Canes will be facing:
*Bartkowksi will be scratched if McQuaid plays. In addition to Krejci, defenseman Steve Kampfer is also out with an injury.
- Bruins blog (Boston Globe) - Adam McQuaid game-time decision, David Krejci out
Kaberle deserves cheers in Garden return - Joe Haggerty, CSNNE.com To boil it down to simplest terms on Kaberle: don’t hate, but appreciate.
- SBN's full Hurricanes vs Bruins coverage and our affiliate blog, Stanley Cup of Chowder
Other Stats of note
Points on the board
Five players are looking to extend 2-game point streaks for Carolina. With 1 G and 1A: Tim Brent, Joni Pitkanen, Brandon Sutter and Jiri Tlusty. Jussi Jokinen has 2 assists.
Pitkanen is two assists shy of 100 career Hurricanes assists.
Cam Ward is 9-10-2, with a 2.78 GAA and two shutouts in 21 career appearances against Boston. Brian Boucher is 7-6-1 with a 2.44 GAA and two shutouts in 15 appearances against the Bruins.
Tuukka Rask is 2-0-0, with a 2.01 GAA in three career games vs Carolina. Tim Thomas: 10-9-1, 2.67 GAA with one shutout in 20 career games.
Between the Kaberle/Corvo storyline and with the Canes' special teams getting attention after the game in Buffalo Friday, here are the current numbers:
Carolina PP: 4-of-24 (16.7%) - tied for 15th
Carolina PK: 22-of-27 (81.5%) - 19th, but also has 2 shorthanded goals (tied for 1st)
Boston PP: 1-for-20 (5%) - tied for 26th
Boston PK: 2-for-19 (89.5%) - 7th. 1 SHG (tied for 3rd)
The game will be broadcast on Fox Sports Carolinas. The pregame show hosted by Bob Harwood starts at 6:30 with game set for 7pm. You can also hear it on 99.9 the Fan, hosted by Mike Maniscalco for the pre- and postgame news and views. Chuck Kaiton will have the play-by-play.
We'll have our live thread up at 6:30 as always open to all. Please stop by.