St. Louis coach Ken Hitchcock is giving forward Jason Arnott the next two games off to overcome a variety of recent injuries. With 16 goals and 32 points, Arnott is a key figure as the Blues prepare for the playoffs.
"We'll bit the bullet," said Hitchcock. "That allows him to have a full week off before he plays again. Arnie was in a situation where he was trying to play through injuries and it wasn't fair to him. I think he was 50 percent of the player we had before. He was a really good player for us three weeks ago. Then he got banged up and tried to play through it, but it doesn't work that way."
After a lengthy practice in Raleigh on Wednesday, St. Louis had a light turnout for an optional skate Thursday morning.
Brian Elliott, with an NHL-best 1.61 goals against average, will get the start against the Hurricanes.
Meanwhile, this is the projected lineup for the Hurricanes based off their morning skate:
You know what? We've played in some pretty special buildings along this playoff run so far. You start in Detroit, you go to Montreal, you come here … I think it's the first team to beat three Original Six teams to get to the Final if I'm not mistaken. That says how tough the road has been. Those are tough places to win.
— Lightning forward Steven Stamkos after Game 7 win vs. Rangers on Friday in New York