We’re into the stretch run, and tonight the Carolina Hurricanes make their final visit to lovely Glendale, Ariz., as they wrap up their Western Conference slate with a matchup against the Arizona Coyotes.
The injury information coming out of Saturday’s loss at Colorado isn’t...great, for sure, but it could be a lot worse. Jordan Staal took the morning skate although he was not participating in line rushes, so while he is not likely to play tonight it hopefully won’t be an extended absence for the captain. As for Frederik Andersen, he was likely to get tonight off anyway, but the team is awaiting the results of an MRI to determine the extent of his injuries.
And there’s an unexpected third entry in the trainer’s room: Jesperi Kotkaniemi, who is still nursing the aftereffects of the injury that kept him out for a couple of weeks. He won’t play tonight either.
Derek Stepan will draw back into the lineup in Staal’s absence, with Max Domi moving up to center the third line, and while Antti Raanta will start, the Hurricanes welcome Pyotr Kochetkov to the active roster to back up Raanta tonight. (What can we expect from Kochetkov, other than some bad Easter Bunny puns from the Canes’ social media team? Glad you asked: Matt has you covered.)
Here’s the Canes’ projected lineup for tonight:
Teuvo Teravainen - Sebastian Aho - Seth Jarvis
Andrei Svechnikov - Vincent Trocheck - Martin Necas
Nino Niederreiter - Max Domi - Jesper Fast
Jordan Martinook - Derek Stepan - Steven Lorentz
Jaccob Slavin - Tony DeAngelo
Brady Skjei - Brett Pesce
Brendan Smith - Ethan Bear
Injuries and Scratches: Frederik Andersen (lower body), Jordan Staal (lower body), Jesperi Kotkaniemi (undisclosed), Ian Cole (healthy)
The next time the Hurricanes visit the desert, the Coyotes will have made their temporary home at Arizona State’s under-construction arena. The city of Glendale kicked out the Coyotes as of the end of this season, so the Canes will set foot inside Gila River Arena for the final time tonight.
I have to be honest: I usually look at the team rosters and I have at least heard of a large majority of the names on them. Not so with the Coyotes, although to be fair that’s by design. They are fully committed to the tank, and God love ‘em for it, but even by tanking standards this is quite the lineup.
And here it is, in all its glory:
Matias Maccelli - Barrett Hayton - Nick Schmaltz
Michael Carcone - Nathan Smith - Travis Boyd
Jack McBain - Jay Beagle - Nick Ritchie
Andrew Ladd - Loui Eriksson - Phil Kessel
Shayne Gostisbehere - Dysin Mayo
Kyle Capobianco - Anton Stralman
Cam Dineen - Vladislav Kolyachonok
Injuries and Scratches: Alex Galchenyuk (healthy), Christian Fischer (lower body), Jakob Chychrun (ankle), J.J. Moser (lower body), Lawson Crouse (hand), Clayton Keller (IR leg), Antoine Roussel (IR lower body), Conor Timmins (IR knee), Dmitrij Jaskin (IR lower body), Liam O’Brien (IR upper body)
Referees: Jake Brenk #26, Conor O’Donnell #41
Linesmen: Travis Gawryletz #67, Kilian McNamara #93