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Gameday: Coyotes vs. Hurricanes

by Michael Smith @MSmithCanes / CarolinaHurricanes.com

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This is the gameday hub, where you can find all the latest news and information related to tonight's cross-conference match-up between the Arizona Coyotes and Carolina Hurricanes in one handy location. Make this a regular stop throughout the day, as we update it with notes, videos, photos and more as puck drop draws near.

After a day away from the rink on Thursday, the Hurricanes return to the ice surface at PNC Arena for a 10:30 a.m. morning skate, where we'll be posted up to bring you the latest.

Last updated: 7:00 p.m.


BLUE CROSS AND BLUE SHIELD OF NORTH CAROLINA TOOLS TO VICTORY
7:00 p.m.

Mike Maniscalco presents tonight's Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina three Tools to Victory.

Video: Tools to Victory: ARI vs. CAR 


IN THE ROOM
4:05 p.m.

Hear from forward Patrick Brown and defenseman Klas Dahlbeck before tonight's match-up with the Coyotes.

Video: Patrick Brown: "Great group of guys" 

Video: Klas Dahlbeck: "Looking forward to this game"


PREGAME: PETERS
2:00 p.m.

"That's a little bit honest, eh?" head coach Bill Peters said as he wrapped up his usual morning discussion with the media in Raleigh. Here's a written look at the topics covered, and you can see the scrum in its entirety below.

On the home-and-home set with Arizona: "That's the beauty of the schedule this year. A lot of unique situations."

On Wednesday's game in Tampa Bay: "The Tampa game, if we could play that way again, I'd love to. That was an outstanding start. They didn't get anything going until they had their first power play. ... We pushed. The penalty kill and that goal by J-Mac was outstanding. Prior to that, Lindy was all alone in the slot shorthanded, too. The guys knew we had to be aggressive on that penalty kill situation, and they were. I really liked our game in Tampa, and I want to play the exact same way the rest of the year."

On the status of Brock McGinn (upper body): "We're hoping to get him on the trip when we go out West. If we don't get him then, we should be able to have him by the time we play the Rangers back at home. We'll see."

On Patrick Brown's play: "Brownie was outstanding with his energy, pace and execution. If he can play like that, that makes it easy for us in the summer, in my opinion."

On Jay McClement, who will play in his 900th game tonight: "He took a slapper right off the forearm. Had to go down the tunnel twice in the third period, thought he was done - I think it was in the third, but I'm not sure. Thought he was done, and the next thing you know he's back on the bench and scores the game-tying goal in his 899th game. He's a warrior."

Video: Bill Peters: "A lot of good looks"


CANES LINES: MORNING SKATE
10:40 a.m.

It appears Jeff Skinner (upper body) will draw back into the lineup tonight. Brock McGinn (upper body) did not skate with the team this morning.

Di Giuseppe-Staal-Teravainen
Aho-Rask-Lindholm
Skinner-McClement-Stempniak
Nordstrom-Ryan-Brown

Slavin-Faulk
Hanifin-Pesce
Dahlbeck-Murphy

Ward
Lack

Andrej Nestrasil and Matt Tennyson look to be the healthy extras. More from inside the room soon.

Tweet from @MSmithCanes: #Canes on the ice for their morning skate. #ARIvsCAR pic.twitter.com/aS1YIsNAJS


ABNORMAL HOME-AND-HOME WITH COYOTES BEGINS
6:00 a.m.

It's not too often that the Carolina Hurricanes play a home-and-home set with a team from the Western Conference, let alone against a club nearly 2,000 miles across the country.

But that's exactly the case this weekend, as the Hurricanes host the Arizona Coyotes in Raleigh on Friday before facing off with them in Glendale on Sunday.

The game is the first of nine home games the Hurricanes will play in the month of March, which features 17 games over a stretch of just 30 days.

Carolina began the month in Tampa Bay on Wednesday and maintained a 2-1 lead heading into the first and second intermissions. The Lightning tallied twice in the third period to take the lead before the Canes tied it up in the final five minutes on a shorthanded redirection from Jay McClement. That helped the Canes secure a point before Victor Hedman's second goal of the game propelled the Bolts in 3-on-3 action.

"I thought for the most part we carried the play. We got a big shorthanded goal to tie it up late," Lee Stempniak said. "They capitalized on their chances. They have some dangerous players, and if you give them room they can make you pay."

The Coyotes, who were sellers at the trade deadline like the Hurricanes, are wrapping up a three-game trip out East and are 0-2-0 thus far after being outscored 10-4 by Boston and Buffalo.

The Hurricanes could possibly get Jeff Skinner back into action tonight. After the team's morning skate in South Florida on Tuesday, Skinner returned to Raleigh for further evaluation on what was deemed an upper-body injury. The Canes got encouraging news on Wednesday.

"He had a stiff neck yesterday morning. As a precaution, which we would do with any of our players, rather than play him in the game last night, we pulled him out," explained Executive Vice President and General Manager Ron Francis. "We flew him back here to Raleigh where he saw Dr. Bloom this morning. He was not diagnosed with a concussion, so we're hopeful we can get him back into the lineup probably on Friday night."

With Skinner and McGinn, who is also nursing an upper-body concern, sidelined, the Canes turned to call-ups Andrej Nestrasil and Patrick Brown in Tampa Bay.

"Brownie showed a lot of speed. He'll be an interesting one. I hope we can get him in enough games to really get a fair evaluation on him to see where he fits moving forward," head coach Bill Peters said. "You know what you're going to get out of Nesty. I thought he came in and did a good job along the walls. He gave us 10 good minutes."

CANESPR NOTES: Jay McClement is one game shy of 900 NHL games played in his career. … The Canes have won their last five games against Arizona, a stretch that dates back to Dec. 14, 2013.


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