NEW JERSEY - Decision 2016! Make the Canes Great Again. I'm With Hurricanes.
This is the gameday hub, where you can find all the latest news and information related to tonight's Metropolitan Division showdown between the Carolina Hurricanes and New Jersey Devils in one handy location. Make this a regular stop throughout the day, as we update it with notes, photos and more as puck drop draws near.
The Hurricanes will be on the ice at Prudential Center for an 11:30 a.m. morning skate, and we'll be rinkside, as always, to bring you the very latest.
Last updated: 3:45 p.m.
BLUE CROSS AND BLUE SHIELD OF NORTH CAROLINA TOOLS TO VICTORY
Mike Maniscalco, who I'll be joining on tonight's Hurricanes Live pregame show, presents tonight's Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina three Tools to Victory.
1. Win the First
It hasn't been a problem this year for the Canes, but starting the game on time tonight and setting the tone in the first 20 minutes needs to happen after Sunday's game. It also builds off the momentum the Hurricanes established against the Devils last time out.
2. Erase the Oddities
The last two games have seen the Canes allowing too many odd-man rushes or breakaways. This starts with players not getting caught deep in the offensive zone and keep-ins at the blue line.
3. Make it Nashville Every Night
Cam Ward was the primary reason for the Canes coming away with two points on Saturday night in Nashville. He has to carry that sharp play into tonight.
Head coach Bill Peters spoke with the media at Prudential Center after his team's morning skate. Here are some quick-hitters from the media availability.
On if his team deserved a better fate on Sunday vs. NJ: "Oh, I don't know. We made enough mistakes to make it hard on ourselves, I know that. The beautiful thing in sports is that you get to play right away again, and lucky for us we get to play the same opponent. It's a good opportunity."
On getting Jakub Nakladal and Klas Dahlbeck into the linuep: "We're going to find out what they're all about. ... [Nakladal] has been with our program, knows what's going on and how we try to play. All those little things he should be more comfortable. Klas has been good. It's an opportunity to get them back in and have a fair evaluation on both players tonight."
On the play of Sebastian Aho: "He's a 19-year-old kid playing in North America for the first time. That's the biggest thing for him right now, and he's done a good job for the most part. ... He'll get it figured out. I haven't been disappointed in his play. He's had some good looks."
Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Justin Faulk is week-to-week with an upper-body injury, head coach Bill Peters said on Tuesday.
Faulk was injured in the third period of Sunday's game against the New Jersey Devils and received an MRI on Monday. Peters ruled the Canes' All-Star defenseman out for the remainder of the week but didn't have a further update.
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CANES LINES: MORNING SKATE
Defenseman Justin Faulk is not with the Hurricanes in New Jersey, so the team will have a different look on defense tonight. Additionally, the forward lines have been juggled quite a bit.
Bryan Bickell and Ryan Murphy appear to be the healthy extras.
CANES GET SECOND CRACK AT DEVILS
Just 48 hours after a disappointing 4-1 loss to the New Jersey Devils, the Carolina Hurricanes will have another crack at their Metropolitan Division foe.
Andrej Nestrasil netted the lone tally for the Canes' in Sunday's defeat, while Devils' netminder Keith Kinkaid stopped 33 of the 34 shots he faced. On the heels of a 3-2 shootout victory in Nashville the night before, Sunday's effort was uninspiring for the Hurricanes, who were hoping to establish a winning streak and some momentum in the standings.
"I thought we could have had a better sense of urgency across the board, everybody involved. That's probably the biggest disappointment," head coach Bill Peters said on Monday. "They were patient and capitalized on our mistakes. We could have had more zone time, and we could have been a little harder on pucks. That's what we have to do not only tomorrow but moving forward."
The Canes will get right back after it on Tuesday night against the very same team, a chance for them to flip the script and even the score in an all-important divisional face off.
"I think it's outstanding," Peters said. "We're fortunate enough to get the exact same team. We know we need to be better, and we'll see if we can hold up our end of the bargain."
In the midst of a three-games-in-four-days stretch, the Hurricanes opted not to hold a practice on Monday.
"We just need energy tomorrow. We've got to bring it on gameday," Peters said. "We're going to have a good pre-game skate in Jersey, and then go out and play."
Defenseman Justin Faulk left Sunday's game in the third period and did not return. On Monday, Peters said Faulk received an MRI on his upper/middle body, but the status of the Canes' All-Star blue-liner remains unknown.
"We're hoping for the best there," Peters said. "We're going to have to probably move some people around and come up with something that works."
Other lineup changes are still pending. Cam Ward, who has stopped 55 of the last 59 shots he's faced (1-0-1), will get the start in net.
CANESPR NOTES: The Hurricanes have won four of the last seven games between the two teams, but the Devils have won seven of the last 11 games in New Jersey. … Jordan Staal ranks second in the NHL in faceoff win percentage (63.3 percent) among players who have taken more than 100 draws.
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