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Carolina Hurricanes vs Buffalo Sabres: Preview, Game Notes, Lines and Rosters

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The Hurricanes look to start a new home win streak tonight against a Sabres team that played just 24 hours ago in Upstate New York.

NHL: Buffalo Sabres at Carolina Hurricanes James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Carolina Hurricanes (12-11-7) vs. Buffalo Sabres (12-11-6)
Saturday, December 17, 2016 - 7:00 PM
PNC Arena - Raleigh, North Carolina
Fox Sports Carolinas, 99.9 The Fan, WRALSportsFan App
Rival SB Nation Blog – Die by the Blade

Vital Statistics

Category Hurricanes Blue Jackets
Category Hurricanes Blue Jackets
Record 21-15-7 29-9-4
Points 49 62
Division Rank 6 Metro 2 Metro
Conference Rank 9 EC 2 EC
Last 10 Games 6-4-0 6-4-0
Streak Won Loss 1
Goals/Game 2.77 3.31
Goals Against/Game 2.63 2.24
Shots/Game 30.6 30.3
Shots Against/Game 27.6 29.8
Faceoff % 51.7% 47.7%
Power Play % (Rank) 17.2% (18) 26.0% (1)
Penalty Kill % (Rank) 88.7% (1) 83.0% (10)
ES Corsi For % 52.1% 55.1%
ES PDO 99.4 101.3
PIM/Game 05:95 08:93

Projected Starting Goaltenders

Category Cam Ward Petr Mrazek
Category Cam Ward Petr Mrazek
Record 10-8-6 9-6-3
ES Save % .914 .912
GAA 2.30 2.98

Projected Backups

Category Michael Leighton Jimmy Howard
Category Michael Leighton Jimmy Howard
Record 2-1-0 5-7-1
ES Save % .857 .937
GAA 3.53 1.95

Game Notes

  • The Hurricanes’ overtime loss last night against the Washington Capitals marked the end of their seven-game home win streak.
  • After falling last night, the Hurricanes are now 1-3-1 in the front half of back-to-back situations this season. However, they are impressive in the second leg of back-to-backs this season, compiling a 3-1-0 record.
  • The Buffalo Sabres played last night in their home building where they defeated the New York Islanders in OT. The Hurricanes need to take advantage of their tired legs tonight if they want to walk away with 2 points.
  • The Sabres dominated the season series in 2015-16, sweeping all three games from the Hurricanes. The Canes will play their former rivals 3 times this season; twice on Edwards Mill Road.
  • Justin Faulk and Buffalo’s Justin Falk will both be in the lineup tonight, surely causing an annoyance for play-by-play announcers John Forslund and Chuck Kaiton.
  • The Sabres have the worst penalty kill in the NHL. Carolina’s 6th ranked penalty kill needs to capitalize on the Sabres loose special teams play tonight.
  • After a Justin Faulk goal last night, all fans get a free side of queso at Moe’s Southwest Grill today.
  • Tonight is the last night to take advantage of the great Family Night discount. Check it out here.

Projected Lines and Rosters

Neither team skated this morning based on the back-to-back situation, but here’s what you can expect tonight.

Hurricanes

Jeff Skinner - Victor Rask - Derek Ryan
Joakim Nordstrom - Jordan Staal - Elias Lindholm
Sebastian Aho - Teuvo Teravainen - Lee Stempniak
Brock McGinn - Jay McClement - Viktor Stalberg

Jaccob Slavin - Brett Pesce
Ron Hainsey - Justin Faulk
Noah Hanifin - Matt Tennyson

Cam Ward
Michael Leighton

Injuries and Scratches: Bryan Bickell (IR multiple sclerosis), Eddie Lack (IR concussion), Ryan Murphy (healthy), Andrej Nestrasil (healthy)

Sabres

Matt Moulson - Jack Eichel - Kyle Okposo
Will Carrier - Ryan O’Reilly - Sam Reinhart
Marcus Foligno - Johan Larsson - Brian Gionta
Evander Kane - Zemgus Girgensons - Nicolas Deslauriers

Jake McCabe - Rasmus Ristolainen
Josh Gorges - Dmity Kulikov
Justin Falk - Cody Franson

Anders Nilsson
Robin Lehner

Injuries and Scratches: Cody McCormick, Taylor Fedun, Tyler Ennis, Zach Bogosian