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Hurricanes vs Islanders: Preview

Beware the Isles of March. The Canes face the Metro division rivals twice over the next four days.

James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Carolina Hurricanes vs New York Islanders
March 26, 2016 - 7:00 pm ET
PNC Arena - Raleigh, NC
Fox Sports Carolinas - 99.9 FM - WRALSportsFan app
SB Nation Rival Blog - Lighthouse Hockey

Vital Statistics

Hurricanes Islanders
Record 32-28-14 39-25-9
Points 78 87
Division Rank 7 Metro 4 Metro
Conference Rank 11 EC 6 EC
Last 10 Games 4-2-4 3-5-2
Streak Won 1 Lost 1

Goals/Game 2.42 2.74
Goals Against/Game 2.65 2.52
ES Goals For % 46.2% 51.5%
Shots/Game 30.1 29.8
Shots Against/Game 27.5 30.4
ES Corsi For % 51.7% 49.8%
Faceoff % 53.6% 49.8%
ES PDO 98.5 100.6
Power Play % (Rank) 16.7% (24) 18.5% (15)
Penalty Kill % (Rank) 84.3% (5) 85.6% (2)
PIM/Game 06:51 08:41

Goaltender #1 Ward Greiss
Record 20-16-9 19-11-4
ES Save % .914 .932
GAA 2.44 2.40

Goaltender #2 Lack Berube
Record 12-12-5 2-1-1
ES Save % .911 .928
GAA 2.66 2.19

*Stats from and War on Ice

Game Notes

  • The Canes find themselves in the midst of six straight games against Metro division opponents, including two this weekend at PNC Arena, as they kick off the Easter holiday against the Islanders tonight and quickly turn around for an early evening matchup tomorrow against the Devils. This weekend finishes off the last of sixteen sets of back-to-back games the Canes will play this season, and they've fared well in them, 9-5-1 on the front end and 9-4-2 on the back end.
  • The Canes are coming off what ended up being a barn burner of a game in Columbus Thursday. They entered the third period down 1-0 but were able to score three goals in less than two minutes to take the lead, then hung on for dear life against a late surge from the Blue Jackets for a 3-2 win. They have picked up points in eight of 10 games played since the trade deadline but remain unable to catch up with the teams in playoff contention. Their tragic number is now down to 10.
  • Yesterday the Canes recalled forward Patrick Brown from the Charlotte Checkers. Brown made his NHL debut playing in the first seven games of the Canes 2014-15 season, but this is his first recall of this season. He has 13 goals in 66 games played for the Checkers. As of this writing, Brody Sutter is still in the lineup for the Canes and has not been reassigned to Charlotte, so one of the forwards that played Thursday may be questionable for tonight's game. Stay tuned for news on that front after the morning skate.
  • The Canes didn't practice yesterday so other than the Brown callup, there are no reports of lineup changes and a starting goaltender hasn't been announced. With back-to-back games less than 24 hours apart both Eddie Lack and Cam Ward likely will be seeing time in net. Chris Terry is riding a four-game points streak and a three-game goal scoring streak. Jordan Staal and Noah Hanifin have points in three straight games. Staal has five goals and 16 points in his last 12 games against the Islanders.
  • The Islanders remain in the first wild card spot in the Eastern Conference but so far they are leaving March like a lamb, 3-5-2 in their last 10 games and with six straight losses on the road. They snapped a four-game winless streak with a 3-1 win against the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday, then followed that up with a 7-4 loss to the Lightning last night, giving up four goals in the third period. It was the second time this season that the Isles gave up at least six goals, the first time was on Feb. 13 when the Isles lost to the Canes 6-3 here in Raleigh. The Canes also won earlier in the season, 3-2 in overtime in Brooklyn, and the teams will see each other again Tuesday night, so the Isles will not be taking tonight's game lightly with their playoff spot at stake. Expect a big game from perpetual Canes-killer John Tavares, who has 32 points (17g, 15a) in 24 career games against the Canes.
  • The Islanders arrived in Raleigh late last night and won't be holding a morning skate. With Thomas Greiss seeing north of 40 shots last night and giving up six goals, expect to see JF Berube in net tonight. Berube was claimed off waivers early in the season but has been mostly on the bench as the Isles third goaltender, but has performed very well when called into action following injury to Jaroslav Halak. He has not faced the Canes in his NHL career.
  • Update 11:15 am: Phil DiGiuseppe will be out of tonight's lineup after taking a hit in Columbus that will reportedly sideline him for "a day or two" (per Canes twitter). Eddie Lack is confirmed to get the start in net, he is 2-1-0 against the Islanders and also relieved Cam Ward in the 6-3 win on Feb. 13 after Ward left the game due to injury.

Projected Lineups

Hurricanes (3/26 morning skate)

Joakim Nordstrom - Jordan Staal - Elias Lindholm
Jeff Skinner - Victor Rask - Riley Nash
Chris Terry- Jay McClement - Patrick Brown
Nathan Gerbe -Brad Malone - Brody Sutter

Jaccob Slavin - Justin Faulk
Noah Hanifin - Brett Pesce
Ron Hainsey - Ryan Murphy

Eddie Lack
Cam Ward

Injuries and scratches: James Wisniewski (IR ACL), Andrej Nestrasil (fractured vertebra), Phillip Di Giuseppe (undisclosed), Michal Jordan (healthy)

Islanders (vs Lightning 3/25)

Josh Bailey - John Tavares - Ryan Strome
Nikolay Kulemin - Frans Nielsen - Kyle Okposo
Shane Prince - Brock Nelson - Anders Lee
Matt Martin - Casey Cizikas - Cal Clutterbuck
Steve Bernier

Nick Leddy - Johnny Boychuk
Calvin de Haan - Travis Hamonic
Thomas Hickey - Ryan Pulock
Brian Strait

Thomas Greiss
Jean-Francois Berube

Injuries and scratches: Adam Pelech (upper body), Marek Zidlicky (upper body), Jaroslav Halak (groin), Mikhail Grabovski (upper body)

Storm Debris

  • Canes Gameday Hub [].
  • Go Inside a Hurricane with Jaccob Slavin to learn about his rookie season and goals [].
  • Cory Lavalette reviews the youth movement that is out in full force for Carolina Hurricanes [Hockey's Future].
  • Isles blogger Dan Saraceni previews tonights game and Canes social media specialist Coop Elias join this week's Cheaters Never Win podcast [Section 328].
  • Berube needs more time in net before the playoffs [Today's Slapshot].
  • Finally on a somber note, condolences are sent to former Hurricanes CEO Jim Cain and his family, who lost their future son-in-law in this week's bombing in Brussels [WRAL] [N&O].