BUFFALO -- With the Olympic break over, the NHL season is heading into the stretch run. The Carolina Hurricanes start their push to make the Stanley Cup Playoffs against the Buffalo Sabres at First Niagara Center on Tuesday night.
The Hurricanes enter the game three points behind the Detroit Red Wings for the final wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference, and they'll have starting goalie Cam Ward back in the lineup.
Ward hasn't played since Dec. 31 against the Montreal Canadiens because of a lower-body injury. He was the first goalie off at the morning skate and appears likely to start.
"I think it's going to be a lot like the first game of the year," Hurricanes coach Kirk Muller said. "Everyone has high expectations. It's like a clean slate. On our part everyone is healthy. We just mentioned to our guys, right from the drop of the puck, I assume the intensity is going to be high and everyone's going to be recharged restarting, and it's going to be full bore from here to the end now."