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Game Day: Hurricanes vs. Sabres 10-14-14

For the first time in 234 games the Hurricanes will be without a Staal in the lineup.

Carolina Hurricanes vs Buffalo Sabres
October 14, 2014 - 7:30 pm ET
PNC Arena - Raleigh, NC
TV - NBC Sports
Radio - 99.9 FM The Fan
SB Nation Rival Blog - Die By The Blade

Fancy Stats

Hurricanes Sabres
Record 0-2-0 0-3-0
Points 0 0
Division Rank 8th Metro 8th Atlantic
Conference Rank 15th EC 16th EC
Streak Lost 2 Lost 3

Power Play % 44.4% 0.0%
Penalty Kill % 50.0% 78.6%
Goals/Game 3.00 1.33
Goals Against/Game 4.50 4.67
Shots/Game 24 19
Shots Against/Game 28.5 43.7
ES Goals For % 28.6% 25.0%
ES Corsi For % 44.5% 33.7%
PIM/Game 17.5 12.3

Goaltender Ward Enroth
Record 0-1-0 0-1-0
ES Save Percentage .857 .918
GAA 5.08 4.50

Goaltender Khudobin Neuvirth
Record 0-1-0 0-2-0
ES Save Percentage .917 .882
GAA 4.14 5.00

Game Notes

  • The good news is it's NOT a concussion, and Eric Staal's upper body concern is officially listed as day-to-day. But it's not often the team goes without seeing its captain on the ice. Staal has only missed 17 games through ten seasons, and with brother Jordan not having missed a game in his first two seasons with the team, tonight marks the first time since February 26, 2011 that there hasn't been a Staal in the Hurricanes line-up.
  • The other good news is that Patrick Dwyer, who left Saturday's game with a lower body injury, is also listed as day-to-day and should not have to miss many days of game action.
  • Perhaps the best news is that Jeff Skinner skated on his own yesterday and is scheduled to skate with the team today, indicating an optimism that his concussion recovery is proceeding smoothly, perhaps joining the team for the road trip to New York for Thursday's game.
  • Now for the bad news, an injury-depleted roster that is so threadbare that even after a Zach Boychuk call-up there currently aren't enough forwards to make up four lines. Brett Bellemore skated as a fill-in yesterday in practice, and unless there are roster changes today, the Canes will skate seven defensemen and double-shift a forward. Read 'em and weep as you glance at the line-up below, especially down the middle.
  • For the downright ugly news, the 0-2-0 Canes and 0-3-0 Buffalo Sabres, the NHL's 29th and 30th ranked teams, will face off tonight on national television. The Sabres are coming off an embarrassing 5-1 matinee loss yesterday to the Anaheim Ducks, where they were out-shot 44-12. Per head coach Ted Nolan, "It was like an NHL team playing against a pee wee team." That ought to make the Sabres players good and angry headed into Raleigh today. Meanwhile, Canes coach Bill Peters says his squad has been working hard but hasn't been working smart.
  • Line-ups are as the Canes practiced yesterday and as the Sabres played yesterday so neither is confirmed for tonight (including starting goaltenders; Ward practiced in the starter crease yesterday and Enroth is an assumption with the back-to-back). As the day progresses we'll update as new information is known.

Projected Line-ups

Hurricanes (from yesterday's practice)

Jiri Tlusty - Victor Rask - Elias Lindholm
Nathan Gerbe - Riley Nash - Alexander Semin
Brad Malone - Jay McClement - Patrick Brown
Chris Terry - Zach Boychuk - Brett Bellemore (fill-in)

Andrej Sekera - Justin Faulk
Tim Gleason - John-Michael Liles
Jay Harrison - Ryan Murphy
Ron Hainsey

Cam Ward
Anton Khudobin

Injuries and Scratches: Jordan Staal (IR broken fibula), Jeff Skinner (IR concussion), Eric Staal (DTD upper body), Patrick Dwyer (DTD lower body)

Sabres (from yesterday's game)

Matt Moulson - Tyler Ennis - Drew Stafford
Torrey Mitchell - Sam Reinhart - Brian Gionta
Cody Hodgson - Zemgus Girgensons - Chris Stewart
Nicolas Deslauriers - Cody McCormick - Brian Flynn

Josh Gorges - Tyler Myers
Andre Benoit - Andrej Meszaros
Mike Weber - Rasmus Ristolainen

Jhonas Enroth
Michal Neuvirth

Injuries and Scratches: Tyson Strachan, Nikita Zadorov, Marcus Foligno (DTD), Mark Pysyk (IR), Jake McCabe (IR)

Note the later start time with the national (woo hoo!) television coverage. We'll have the open game thread ready to roll by 7:00 pm. If you're headed to PNC Arena tonight, pick up a handy-dandy schedule sticker set. See you there.