The Hurricanes creeped closer to unveiling their opening night roster, sending both Zach Boychuk and Chad LaRose to the Charlotte Checkers to bring their roster to 22 players (PDF of the roster here). Boychuk will have to clear waivers, while LaRose was in Carolina camp on a professional tryout and can go directly to Charlotte since he is not under contract with the Hurricanes.
Boychuk’s reassignment is a bit of a surprise — he seemed poised to finally earn an NHL spot, but was apparently beaten out by Chris Terry. It also casts a somewhat hopeful light on Jeff Skinner’s status. Skinner was hurt in Sunday’s preseason game on an elbow to the head from Capitals defenseman Matt Niskanen, but the team is now carrying only 12 forwards on their active roster. Certainly there is an option to recall a forward at any time, but one would think the team would like to have a player practicing with the Hurricanes if they will be needed for Friday’s opener. The team could also opt to dress seven defensemen, but one would think they'd like to start with a full fourth line.
On that same point, the Hurricanes currently have eight defensemen on the roster, and coach Bill Peters has a week to figure out who resides in his top six. Here's the release from the team.
BOYCHUK, LaROSE TO JOIN CHARLOTTE CHECKERS
Hurricanes training camp roster stands at 23 players
RALEIGH, NC – Ron Francis, Executive Vice President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the team will assign forwards Zach Boychuk and Chad LaRose to the Charlotte Checkers of the American Hockey League (AHL). Boychuk will be assigned on Tuesday pending waivers, and LaRose, who has an AHL contract with Charlotte, has been released from his professional tryout with Carolina.
The Hurricanes now have 22 players in camp. All 30 NHL teams must submit their season-opening rosters by 5 p.m. on Tuesday. An updated training camp roster is attached to this release.