PITTSBURGH, PA - DECEMBER 27: Marc-Andre Fleury #29 of the Pittsburgh Penguins makes a save on Zac Dalpe #22 of the Carolina Hurricanes during the game at Consol Energy Center on December 27, 2011 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
The Carolina Hurricanes, (12-20-6) will play their third game in four nights tonight as they take on the Toronto Maple Leafs, (18-14-4) at the RBC. The Canes have earned points in five of their last seven games and have won two of their last three.
It looks like Patrick Dwyer will remain out tonight, meaning that Zac Dalpe will once again be in the lineup. Dalpe will be slotted on the same line with Eric Staal and Jiri Tlusty. According to CH.com, the lines should start out as follows:
- Tlusty, Staal, Dalpe
- Ruutu, Jokinen, Ponikarovsky
- Bowman, Sutter, LaRose
- Stewart, Brent, Nodl
- Gleason, McBain
- Harrison, Faulk
- Allen, Spacek
Cam Ward will be back in net for the Canes. He will face James Reimer for Toronto. Reimer is 3-0-0 career against Carolina.
|2011 - Cam Ward||32||1824||12||14||97||3.19||954||857||.898||1|
|2011 - James Reimer||15||836||7||3||41||2.94||413||372||.901||1|
The Leafs are led by Phil Kessel, who has been among the league leaders for goals scored much of the season. Joffrey Lupul is right behind him and is surprisingly scoring at over a point a game clip.
|2011 - Phil Kessel||36||20||22||42||2||10||4||0||3||134|
|2011 - Joffrey Lupul||36||16||23||39||5||36||5||0||2||106|
According to the Globe and Mail, look for these lines from the Leafs:
Joffrey Lupul-Tyler Bozak-Phil Kessel
Clarke MacArthur-Tim Connolly-Nazem Kadri
Matt Frattin-Mikhail Grabovski-Nikolai Kulemin
Darryl Boyce-Dave Steckel-Joey Crabb
Keith Aulie-Dion Phaneuf
Jake Gardiner-Luke Schenn
Carl Gunnarsson-Cody Franson
Pension Plan Puppets will have even more about the Buds.
These teams have split decisions so far this season, with both teams winning respectively at home. Tuomo Ruutu has a six game point streak in play, (5G 2A). Tim Gleason, Tim Brent, and Alexei Ponikarovsky each have points in two straight.
The game will be televised locally by FS Carolinas with a pregame show at 6:30. We will also have our open thread ready to go at 6:30.