Carolina Hurricanes coach Paul Maurice admitted his decision to start backup goalie Justin Peters against the Philadelphia Flyers on Monday was determined a long time ago.PHILADELPHIA --
It's a significant decision, however, when you consider the last three losses for the Flyers have come against backup goalies -- Mathieu Garon of Columbus, Curtis McElhinney of Anaheim and Brent Johnson of Pittsburgh.
Monday will be Peters' second game this season -- he yielded four goals in a 4-3 loss to the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center on Oct. 20.
"I had this one on the schedule for quite some time, based on where we're at -- our seventh game in 14 days," Maurice told the media following the team's morning skate here at Wells Fargo Center. "He has to play a game and he'll see plenty of big shots from the point and guys going around the net. His size (6-foot-1, 205) will give him the best opportunity to shine. It also gives us a chance to keep Cam (Ward) from playing 82 games."
This will be Peters' first NHL game in Philadelphia.
"I'm excited," Peters told NHL.com. "I've been trying to stay sharp in practice, stay ready, so when I'm called upon I can try and give the team a chance to win. I've played some minor-league hockey in Philadelphia when I played with the Albany River Rats and obviously the fans are very supportive here. I'm looking forward to getting into it."
Hurricanes rookie defenseman Jamie McBain was a teammate of Peters in Albany.
"I know what kind of competitor he is, night in and night out," McBain told NHL.com. "He's the kind of guy you want to play in front of because you know he'll battle every single night and never give up on any plays regardless. He's a great goalie himself, so anytime he's in net we're confident in him and we don't feel like we have to change anything as a defensive corps."
Peters is 6-4-0 with a 2.96 GAA and .899 save percentage in 10 NHL games.
"(Hurricanes assistant coach Tom Barrasso) works with me in practice to stay ready and does game-situation drills so I feel good," Peters said. "Just from watching Cam out there, he's so calm and the way he carries himself is great. He's a confident goalie and I want to be the same way out there. I want to instill confidence in the team, so they're confident in me."
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