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Gameday: Hurricanes at Kings

by Michael Smith / Carolina Hurricanes
Michael Smith

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LOS ANGELES – And I know I can't go wrong/ ‘Cause I finally found my song/ And I'm headin' where I belong/ Hollywood.

This is the gameday hub, where you can find all the latest news and information related to tonight’s game in one handy location. Make this a regular stop throughout the day, as we update it with notes, photos and more as the day rolls on.

The Hurricanes will not hold a morning skate, but we’ll have updates throughout the day leading up to the 10:30 p.m. EST puck drop at Staples Center. In the meantime, grab the caffeine to stay up late with us tonight!



LINEUP NOTES

While the Carolina Hurricanes did not hold a morning skate in Los Angeles, head coach Bill Peters confirmed a couple of roster changes for tonight's game.

Up front, Alexander Semin will be a healthy scratch, and Brad Malone will draw back into the lineup. On defense, Jay Harrison will return to the lineup after missing three games with a lower-body injury, and John-Michael Liles will sit.

Expect the lines to look like this tonight:

Tlusty-E. Staal-Lindholm
Gerbe-Nash-Dwyer
Skinner-Rask-Terry
Boychuk-McClement-Malone

Sekera-Faulk
Harrison-Gleason
Hainsey-Bellemore

That group of 18, plus Cam Ward in net, is the same bunch that defeated the Kings 3-2 just over two weeks ago.



CANES CLAIM NESTRASIL ON WAIVERS

Andrej NestrasilThe Carolina Hurricanes dipped into the waiver wire on Thursday morning, claiming forward Andrej Nestrasil from Detroit.

Nestrasil, 23, skated in 13 games with the Red Wings this season as a rookie and tallied two assists. The Czech forward spent the 2013-14 season with the Grand Rapid Griffins, Detroit's AHL affiliate, posting 16 goals and 20 assists (36 points) in 70 games. He added six points (4g, 2a) in 10 Calder Cup playoff games, which ranked him tied for fourth on the team in postseason scoring.

Nestrasil was a third-round pick of Detroit in 2009, and he won a Calder Cup with the Griffins in 2013.

According to TSN's Bob McKenzie, more than one team put in a waiver claim on Nestrasil, but the Canes were higher in the claim order (lower in standings).

Canes head coach Bill Peters, who spent the last three season as an assistant coach with Detroit, is obviously familiar with Nestrasil. We'll get reaction from him later this morning.

UPDATE: Nestrasil will not play in Los Angeles tonight. He'll join the Canes in Denver, per Vice President of Communications and Team Services Mike Sundheim.



CANES PROJECTED LINEUP

The Hurricanes practiced on Wednesday afternoon at Toyota Sports Center, and their forward lines were consistent with what we saw on Tuesday night in Dallas. As a refresher:

Tlusty-E. Staal-Lindholm
Gerbe-Nash-Semin
Skinner-Rask-Terry
Boychuk-McClement-Dwyer

Jay Harrison missed his third straight game with a lower-body injury on Tuesday, but head coach Bill Peters said he might be available to play tonight.

HURRICANES at KINGS
Hurricanes at Kings
STAPLES CENTER | 10:30 p.m.
TV: FOX SPORTS CAROLINAS | RADIO: 99.9 FM
ARTICLES
CANES CLAIM ANDREJ NESTRASIL ON WAIVERS
TWEETMAIL NO. 40: MUSTACHES & MORE
RECAP: CAR 6, DAL 4
MCCLEMENT HITS NO. 700
VIDEOS
ROAD REPORT: NOV. 19
HIGHLIGHTS: CAR 6, DAL 4
GAMEDAY LINKS
GAME NOTES (PDF)
IN-GAME TWITTER
FIRST GOAL CONTEST
“He had a good skate here today, so if we choose to put him in, I think he’ll be available,” Peters said after practice on Wednesday. “We’ll talk to Pete (Friesen) afterwards to make sure everything is good, and then we should have seven healthy D. We were patient with Harry’s injury, and I think it’s going to pay off.”

With that in mind, here’s how the defensive pairings looked against Dallas:

Sekera-Faulk
Liles-Gleason
Hainsey-Bellemore

As announced by Peters on Wednesday afternoon, Cam Ward will get the start in net for the Canes. It will be his ninth start in the month of November, a month in which Ward has posted six wins, a 1.88 goals-against average and a .931 save percentage.



CANES LOOK TO SWEEP SERIES VS. DEFENDING CHAMPS

Just over two weeks ago in Raleigh, the Carolina Hurricanes topped the Los Angeles Kings 3-2 in what was the team’s second victory in a string of five straight to begin the month of November.

Thursday night in Los Angeles, the Hurricanes will look to sweep the two-game season series and again string together consecutive wins.

The Canes busted a three-game losing skid on Tuesday night in Dallas with a wild 6-4 victory, and they bring a 6-3-1 November record into Los Angeles.

“I thought it was good, and I thought we played well,” head coach Bill Peters said on Wednesday after practice, looking back on the win in Dallas. “We had good, quality chances in the middle of the game. I would have liked to control the third period a little better than we did, but hopefully we learn from that the next time we’re in that situation.”

A four-goal second-period helped lift the Canes to victory on Tuesday. It was their first four-goal period since Jan. 25, 2014 in a 6-3 win over Ottawa.

The Kings’ offense has also been quite potent as of late. They come into tonight’s contest having scored five goals in three of their last five games, and they’re riding a two-game winning streak after topping Anaheim 3-2 in overtime and Florida 5-2.

The Hurricanes practiced with the same forward trios that saw the ice in Dallas. Peters has been looking for a right winger to complement center Eric Staal, who had two big third-period goals en route to earning the fireman’s helmet on Tuesday. Currently, Elias Lindholm is that winger.

“With lines you’re always looking for pairs, and then you get that third guy in there. With the Nash line, we went with Gerbe and Lindy for quite a while, and then it went a little bit dry, so we shook it up,” Peters said. “You’re not going to leave three guys together for 82 games. For the foreseeable future, we’ll play Staalsy and Lindy together and see how it goes.”

Cam Ward will get the start in net, his ninth start in the month of November, a month in which Ward has posted six wins, a 1.88 goals-against average and a .931 save percentage. Ward is 3-0-2 with a 1.78 goals-against average in five career appearances against Los Angeles.

NOTES: Eric Staal and Alexander Semin are each one point shy of milestone markers: 700 career points for Staal and 500 for Semin. … Ron Hainsey’s next game played will be his 100th in a Hurricanes sweater. … Eight of the last 10 meetings between these two teams have been decided by one goal.



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