Bill Peters has a plan, and his plan says that by Friday night's home game against the Sabres, the Carolina Hurricanes should ice a close representation of their opening night roster. In the meantime, tonight's game against the Columbus Blue Jackets will serve as another opportunity for many of the younger or "on the bubble" players to prove that they are worthy of a roster spot or an early call-up.
Victor Rask, Brock McGinn, Patrick Brown, and Brody Sutter are all scheduled to play back-to-back. Rask will center Zach Boychuk and Nathan Gerbe as tonight's top line. Michal Jordan and Rasmus Rissanen will get a look as one of the defensive pairings.
Anton Khudobin is scheduled to pull the full 60 minutes in net tonight.
Projected roster (per Canes twitter):
Nathan Gerbe - Victor Rask - Zach Boychuk
Brad Malone - Jay McClement - Patrick Dwyer
Phil DiGiuseppe - Patrick Brown - Brendan Woods
Brock McGinn - Brody Sutter - Carter Sandlak
Ron Hainsey - Tim Gleason
John-Michael Liles - Brett Bellemore
Michal Jordan - Rasmus Rissanen
The Blue Jackets, who the Canes will face for the second time this preseason, are without their top line. Boone Jenner is out with a broken hand, Nathan Horton is suffering a back injury, and Ryan Johansen is a training camp hold-out with a contentious contract negotiation. Despite those setbacks, they have a 5-1 preseason record (one of those five wins coming against the Canes on September 21) and are expected to have an experienced group in their line-up tonight.
Projected roster (per Blue Jackets website):
Scott Hartnell - Artem Anisimov - Marko Dano
Matt Calvert - Alexander Wennberg - Cam Atkinson
Simon Hjalmarsson - Mark Letestu - Nick Foligno
Corey Tropp - Michael Chaput - Jared Boll
Fedor Tyutin - Dalton Prout
Jack Johnson - David Savard
James Wisniewski - Tim Erixon
Perhaps the most exciting aspect of tonight's game is that fans will actually be able to WATCH. Tune in to the Blue Jackets website to catch the online video stream.