Carolina Hurricanes vs. Toronto Maple Leafs
December 18, 2014 - 7:00 pm ET
PNC Arena - Raleigh, NC
Radio - 99.9 FM The Fan
SB Nation Rival Blog - Pension Plan Puppets
|Division Rank||8th Metro||4th Atlantic|
|Conference Rank||16th EC||6th EC|
|Streak||Lost 6||Won 6|
|Power Play %||18.4%||21.0%|
|Penalty Kill %||82.7%||84.0%|
|ES Goals For %||40.0%||53.5%|
|ES Corsi For %||52.2%||45.5%|
|ES Save Percentage||.909||.932|
|ES Save Percentage||.893||.908|
Stats via NHL.com and War on Ice
- The Hurricanes and Maple Leafs are streaking, but in opposite directions. The Canes have lost six straight and the Leafs have won six straight. This is the first of three times the teams will meet this season. Last season the Canes won two of three, and they haven't lost a series to the Leafs since the 2006-07 season, and they've won six out of the last seven at PNC Arena. Over the last 22 games in which the teams have faced each other, the Canes have scored four or more goals in 11 of those games.
- The Hurricanes closed out a three-game road swing on Tuesday with a 4-1 loss to the Canadiens in Montreal. In addition to the sixth straight loss, it was the sixth straight game in which they were held to one lone goal. Head coach Bill Peters admitted it was a first for him to see a team dry up this much on offense and that the challenge he faces in his first season here as head coach might be a little bigger than he first realized.
- The Canes held a limited skate yesterday. All players who were in the line-up Tuesday are expected to be available, and none of the injured players are due back, so there won't be significant line-up changes. They'll skate at RCI this morning at 10:30 (NCSU graduation at PNC).
- After scoring the solo Canes goal Tuesday night, his 200th career NHL point, Jeff Skinner has points in his last two games. Skinner is a point-per-game player against the Leafs (13 points in 12 games) along with Eric Staal (37 points in 35 games), Alexander Semin (24 points in 23 games), John-Michael Liles (9 points in 7 games), and Elias Lindholm (3 points in 1 game).
- There are five Canes on the active roster with ties to the Leafs organization. Jay Harrison and Jiri Tlusty were drafted by the Leafs and made their NHL starts there, and more recently, John-Michael Liles and Tim Gleason spent at least part of last season there before/after being traded for each other. Jay McClement will face the Leafs for the first time after two years on their roster.
- The Leafs have come a long way since their 9-2 loss to the Predators on November 18th and the ensuing 'Salute-gate' following a win two nights later. They have been red hot, clicking at a 10-1-1 record over their last 12 games.
- Their last win was a convincing 6-2 defeat of the Anaheim Ducks on Tuesday. David Booth scored the game-winning goal, his first as a Maple Leaf after suffering a broken foot that kept him out for the early part of the Leafs season.
- Roman Polak is ready to reenter the Leafs line-up tonight after suffering a knee injury on November 22nd. Brandon Kozum was placed on waivers yesterday in anticipation of Polak's return. If Polak returns, he will likely replace Korbinian Holzer in the line-up.
- Phil Kessel leads the Leafs in goals (17) and points (34) and has points in five straight games. He's followed by James van Riemsdyk with 28 points (13g, 15a) and Tyler Bozak with 27 (12g, 15a).
- Jonathan Bernier is receiving the majority of the reps in net. He has 13 wins in 22 starts, and in his last four starts, all wins, he's stopped 143 of 149 shots for a .960 save percentage.
- The Leafs won't skate today, so any roster updates won't be known until closer to game time.
Hurricanes (from Tuesday's game)
Injuries and Scratches: Jordan Staal (IR broken fibula), Alexander Semin (IR lower body), Andrej Nestrasil (IR upper body), Jiri Tlusty (upper body), John-Michael Liles (upper body), Brett Bellemore (healthy)
Injuries and Scratches: Roman Polak (IR, knee), Leo Komarov (concussion), Carter Ashton (suspension)
The Canes are back in black tonight, and it's a College Select night with discounts available for upper and lower level tickets. Good seats are still available for this one.