Halak had missed the past three games due to a groin strain that landed him on injured reserve. Halak had been expected to start Monday's game.
The Hurricanes, who now sit atop the Southeast Division and are third in the Eastern Conference, are 3-1-1 on their six-game road trip, which concludes Tuesday against the conference-leading New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center.
"I think our game against the Islanders might have been our best game of the whole road trip," Muller told reporters Monday after his team's 6-4 victory. "We just keep finding ways to win right now."
And to everyone's surprise, that player is not named Drew Doughty.
While Doughty, taken on average in the seventh round of Yahoo! Fantasy Hockey drafts, has stumbled out of the gate with no goals, four assists and a minus-10 rating through 11 games, Slava Voynov has emerged as the team's most productive player on the blue line.
The Devils enter Tuesday's game riding a five-game winning streak and are first in Eastern Conference with 19 points, two ahead of the Northeast Division-leading Boston Bruins. The Bruins face the New York Rangers on Tuesday at TD Garden.
There doesn't appear to be any lineup changes in store for the Devils, although defenseman Mark Fayne was absent from the team's morning skate due to a death in his family. He was replaced by Peter Harrold during New Jersey's brisk 30-minute workout, but coach Peter DeBoer said he expects Fayne to be in the lineup alongside captain Bryce Salvador against the Southeast Division-leading Hurricanes on Tuesday.
Forward Dainius Zubrus will miss his fourth straight game with an upper-body injury. Zubrus was hurt during a 3-1 victory against the Rangers on Feb. 5.
Kovalev, who was signed after being invited to camp on a tryout basis, had been benched in favor of Jack Skille for Thursday's 3-2 shootout victory at the Philadelphia Flyers and Saturday's 5-0 loss at Washington.
Skille scored Florida's first goal in the victory against the Flyers. He'll stay in the lineup, with Jerred Smithson relegated to the press box.
According to the Philadelphia Daily News, Philadelphia Flyers center Sean Couturier has been sent home from the team's road trip due to the flu, with forward Harry Zolnierczyk recalled from the club's American Hockey League team to replace him.
Couturier was a late scratch from Monday's game against the Toronto Maple Leafs due to the flu. It was the first game of a six-game road trip that continues Tuesday in Winnipeg.
Zolnierczyk, 25, has nine goals and eight assists in 46 games with the Adirondack Phantoms this season. He split last season between Adirondack and the Flyers, totaling three goals and three assists in 37 NHL games.
At 17:40 of the second period in the Coyotes/Avalanche game, video review upheld the referee's call on the ice that Phoenix defenseman Keith Yandle's shot went off the goalpost. No Goal Phoenix.
At 11:19 of the second period in the Sharks/Blue Jackets game, video review upheld the referee's call on the ice that Columbus forward RJ Umberger's shot never crossed the goal line. No Goal Columbus.
At 13:42 of the first period in the Hurricanes/Islanders game, video review upheld the referee's call on the ice that Carolina defenseman Jamie McBain's shot deflected off Tim Wallace's left skate and into the net. According to Rule 49.2 "A puck that deflects into the net off an attacking player's skate who does not use a distinct kicking motion is a legitimate goal." Good goal Carolina.
I just wanted to do something to take my mind off the shot and let me relax a little bit. It seemed like the fans liked it. I'm glad I was able to score.