Clicks and Clippings: Muller mixing it up

This may be just a blip on the radar, but Kirk Muller continues to look for ways to bring maximum returns from the players on the roster: Hurricanes depth chart from practice as of Jan 5 2011. From CarolinaHurricanes.com Note: the sequence of the lines has since been updated to show Brandon Sutter's line is considered the 2nd line.

The Carolina Hurricanes had an earlier-than-usual practice this morning in preparation for their game tomorrow night when the Buffalo Sabres are in town. The shoot-out loss Tuesday has led to some roster adjustments with Zac Dalpe and Derek Joslin assigned to Charlotte yesterday.

It appears Patrick Dwyer has not yet been cleared for contact (same for Skinner) which leaves the Canes with just 11 forwards. This opens the door for another emergency recall. Per Chip Alexander, the call goes to the Checkers captain, Brett Sutter. This will be Sutter42's first audition in front of the new Coach. We'll update this with the link when the Canes make it official. 5:25PM: It's Official.

Post practice audio from Coach Kirk Muller today - 4 minutes, including discussion of the who's why's and when's.

Canes likely to recall Brett Sutter- Chip Alexander, Canes Now ★★★★★ Muller had Staal centering Tuomo Ruutu and Jussi Jokinen, moving Jokinen back to a wing.

"We're trying to look at the options," Muller said. "They're three veteran guys and put a little onus on them to lead the charge up there, to produce as a top line. (Jokinen) has had some chemistry with 'Staalsy' and 'Ruuts' is playing harder. I think it's important that we establish that type of a line."

LATE UPDATE: Muller Will Get First Look at Brett Sutter - Tracking the Storm ★★★★★ Brett Sutter will be up with the big club for both games. With Sunday a scheduled off-day, news on Skinner or Dwyer’s return most likely will wait until Monday in advance of the Hurricanes’ game with the Philadelphia Flyers at home on Tuesday.

Jamie Kellner was at practice yesterday and put together a ★★★★ flickr photo set of the more informal setting at RCI.

Hurricanes send Dalpe, Joslin to Charlotte - NewsObserver.com ★★★★★ with attention paid to how the coach determines lines and TOI:

"I think the message overall is we've got to compete, we've got to compete hard and we've got to win battles," Muller said. "It's consistency that we're after. We've got to be a hard team to play against, with the puck, without the puck. One-on-one battles, everywhere on the rink."We can't have any exceptions. That's the way we have to play to get results on a consistent basis."

After the jump, Canes-focused news and links, including speculation on those players who are here now, but might not be by the trade deadline, checking in with Victor Rask at World Juniors, and a few other updates from across the puckwebz.


Catching up with the Hurricanes

AUDIO

Plus some text

The Canes have a number of upcoming unrestricted free agents that have "rental" potential for Stanley Cup contenders. As the trade deadline nears and playoff races heat up, Rutherford suspects the prices for these rental players will become steeper.



View from the outside

I really like the way Peters moves in the net. He’s wider than he is taller, so his space management is fairly solid. It was really good in last night’s game, mainly due to the fact he was able to get to the top of his crease on most occasions. He has quick feet for his frame, which is essentially the most important part of quality in-crease movement. Everything in terms of his technique and performance came together nicely right from the drop of the puck, so he rode the wave of momentum throughout the night and finished as Carolina’s best player.



Prospects and the WJC

It's the Swedes vs the Russians for the 2012 World Juniors Gold Medal at Calgary's Saddledome Arena tonight. It'll be broadcast at 8pm ET on NHLNetwork. Victor Rask has not played a major role on the Swedish team yet, but still, it's a great experience and as a top center for the WHL's Calgary Hitmen, he gets some extra attention from local media.

Plus: a nice showing in Charlotte from the Number 5 goalie in the system. John Muse, formerly the backstop at Boston College, where Brian Dumoulin still plays, has an AHL/ECHL contract and got his first AHL start in the back-to-back. As happens in pro sports, he, like Justin Peters, is a beneficiary of the Brian Boucher injury.



[rampant] Trade speculation

For those of you keeping track, there are 54 days or so till we know how this shakes out:

4. You guys love trade talk, so here's some: If you've got defencemen to trade, you are in position A. NHL general managers may sell their children for blue-line depth. One defenceman who appears to be available and will command interest is Carolina's Tim Gleason. "He's a good player," said one GM. Gleason is a UFA-to-be.

To which I say, between Keegan Lowe and Brett Sutter, Rutherford has already established precedent in concept. Does Holmgren Jr. even play hockey? And if so, how would he compare to one or more of Ken Holland's progeny?


Around the league

Remember when we all cared about this?

Leading vote-getter Karlsson leads Ottawa's charge in ASG voting results - 2012 Tim Hortons NHL All-Star Game Ottawa dominates fan voting results, earning four ASG berths. Rest of the invites will be announced later this month. The events are set for Jan 27 to 29, in Ottawa. Yes there will be a fantasy draft.


Off ice considerations

Your HM special - from last night's local news: Hurricanes bonding over recent fatherhood - WRALSportsFan.com ★★★★★ WRAL's Mandy Mitchell spoke to several new fathers on the Hurricanes team and staff about how they are bonding over their new babies.

No further description needed - just take a look. Tumblr: He's Just So Thrilled ★★★★★ Eric Staal holds all sorts of things. (sticktap to Caniacgirl3016)

Because the Hurricanes came in second to only the NY Rangers, something to distract you or cause further consternation and debate: Tea with Ms. Conduct: Mirror, Mirror on the Wall… - Ms Conduct, Backhand Shelf ★★★★

But because we’re not just winging it here at Backhand Shelf — because we have integrity and we like to put numbers and facts behind our work — I knew I couldn’t just assume the Rangers were the most attractive team in the league. I had to make up numbers to support my theory.

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