The Carolina Hurricanes’ nightmare season continued Friday night with a 6-3 loss in South Florida to the Panthers. The good news? The Canes get another crack at their Southeast Division foes tonight at the RBC Center when both teams come to Raleigh to wrap up an old-fashinioned home-and-home series.
The team Florida faced Friday night could look different from the one iced this evening, as Tim Gleason and Niclas Wallin may return to the Carolina blueline. Coach Paul Maurice shuffled his lines some in the loss, so there's no telling yet what the forward lines will look like, but expect the same 12 to dress as last night.
Scott Clemmensen will likely start in goal for the Panthers, while Carolina may look to Cam Ward, who was pulled in favor of Manny Legace after the Panthers’ fifth goal early in the third period.
There's not much more to say about two teams that played last night. Florida right wing Radek Dvorak was an impressive plus-5 last night, getting a goal and two assists to lead the Panthers. The Canes, on the other hand, got some offense from some unexpected contributors in the loss. Patrick Dwyer got his second career NHL goal and first of the season, while Andrew Alberts added two assists and fourth-liner Scott Walker got his second goal of the season.
Eric Staal also got his second goal in as many games and third in four outings — he now has 14 points in 11 games since returning from injury — but he and linemates Ray Whitney and Tuomo Ruutu were all minus-3 on the night.
Carolina will need top-to-bottom effort to avoid losing their fifth game in six outings.
The puck drops at 7 p.m. at the RBC Center and the game will be broadcast by FS-Carolinas and 99.9 The Fan. We'll update the status of Gleason and Wallin, plus who will be in net, as we find out.