|Division Rank||6 Metro||3 Pacific|
|Conference Rank||10 EC||6 WC|
|Last 10 Games||5-3-2||6-2-2|
|Streak||Lost 1||Won 3|
|ES Goals For %||47.2%||51.3%|
|ES Corsi For %||53.1%||51.1%|
|Power Play % (Rank)||17.3% (24)||22.2% (4)|
|Penalty Kill % (Rank)||82.1% (11)||80.8% (15)|
|ES Save %||.916||.925|
|ES Save %||.907||.893|
*Stats from NHL.com and War on Ice
- For the first time in six games, the Hurricanes failed to pick up at least a point after losing 4-2 last night to the Ottawa Senators. The loss combined with wins from other teams in playoff contention makes the postseason picture a bit bleaker this morning. The Canes are four points back of Pittsburgh and Tampa Bay for the last wild card spot and also have to leap the Devils (before accounting for games in hand). Meanwhile, the Senators and Flyers have pulled within two points of catching the Canes. Two wins out of every three games will keep the team in contention with 24 games remaining, but that's a pace slightly higher than they've been playing, and the road from here out isn't getting any easier.
- They'll look to avenge last night's loss along with a loss earlier this season to tonight's opponent, the San Jose Sharks, who defeated the Canes 5-2 on Oct. 24 thanks to two early goals and an empty net hat trick for Joel Ward. The Canes have won seven of the last ten meetings against the Sharks including wins in five of the last seven inside the friendly confines of PNC Arena.
- The Sharks are playing their third game of a five-game road trip. In their first two games they swept the state of Florida, defeating the Lightning in Tampa then a 2-1 shootout win last night against the Panthers. They sit third in the Pacific division but are only three points behind the first-place Kings (and were just pushed down to third by the surging Anaheim Ducks who jumped a point ahead of them last night).
- The Sharks are likely without the services of forward Tommy Wingels, who left Thursday's game after a first period collision into the boards, so the Sharks may recall a forward. Defenseman Brenden Dillon has missed four games with an upper body injury but is on the road trip and will be re-evaluated prior to tonight. Head coach Pete DeBoer hasn't confirmed a starting goaltender. Martin Jones was in net for the win last night and didn't face a heavy workload despite the shootout, so he may repeat tonight; if so it would be his fourth consecutive start. Jones' solo prior appearance against the Canes was in the 5-2 win in October. Backup Alex Stalock is 0-1-1 with a 3.41 GAA in two career appearances against the Canes.
- Joe Pavelski leads the Sharks in goals (26) and points (54), and Joe Thornton leads in assists (39). Tomas Hertl has six points in four career games against the Canes.
- After a 10:00 pm game wrap-up and a trip through customs, the Canes didn't arrive back in Raleigh until 2:30 am, and obviously won't hold a morning skate. Cam Ward is expected to get the start in net after returning to the lineup last night to back up Eddie Lack. Otherwise there are no known changes to the lineup with regard to forward lines or defensive pairings. Justin Faulk did not travel with the team, though he did skate on his own here in Raleigh, but he's not expected to be back in the lineup until Sunday at the earliest.
- Riley Nash has goals in three straight games. Jordan Staal has goals in two straight, and he, Victor Rask and Elias Lindholm all have four points in their last three games.
- It's Star Wars night in the arena, with themed characters, music, and games throughout the evening. Area costuming organizations will be on the concourse during second intermission for photo opportunities.
Hurricanes (vs Senators 2/18)
Kris Versteeg - Eric Staal - Phillip Di Giuseppe
Joakim Nordstrom - Jordan Staal - Andrej Nestrasil
Jeff Skinner - Victor Rask - Elias Lindholm
Chris Terry - Jay McClement - Riley Nash
Jaccob Slavin - Ron Hainsey
John-Michael Liles - Brett Pesce
Noah Hanifin - Michal Jordan
Injuries and scratches: James Wisniewski (IR ACL), Justin Faulk (lower body)
Sharks (2/18 vs Florida)
Tomas Hertl - Joe Thornton - Joe Pavelski
Matt Nieto - Patrick Marleau - Joel Ward
Joonas Donskoi - Logan Couture - Tommy Wingels
Melker Karlsson - Chris Tierney - Dainius Zubrus
Marc-Edouard Vlasic - Justin Braun
Paul Martin - Brent Burns
Dylan DeMelo - Matt Tennyson
Injuries and Scratches:
- Canes Gameday Hub [CH.com].
- Mike Maniscalco joined the Marek vs. Wyshynski podcast yesterday to talk about all the Canes hot takes (41-minute mark) [Fan590].
- Ryan Kennedy (THN) and Joe Ovies (WRAL Sports) are this week's guests on the Cheaters Never Win podcast [Section 328].
- In case you missed it, yesterday Eric Staal said he wouldn't be crushed if the Canes traded him [Puck Daddy] [SportsNet - full video interview].
- Sharks stay hot, beat Panthers in shootout [Mercury News].
- Sharks' Tommy Wingels injured, probably 'out a little while' [Mercury News].
- Last night, Paul Maurice said some things you're not supposed to say to a ref, and got tossed from the Jets/Lightning game [SportsNet].
- Cool video from Corey Hirsch on how to keep goaltenders safe yet shrink their equipment [SportsNet].
- It's a costume night at PNC Arena. Wonder if this guy will be back in town?