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Gameday: Bruins vs. Hurricanes

by Michael Smith @MSmithCanes / CarolinaHurricanes.com

We could probably just move this game outside.

This is the gameday hub, where you can find all the latest news and information related to this evening's match-up between the Boston Bruins 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.

It's an earlier-than-usual 5 p.m. puck drop today, so the Hurricanes will not hold a morning skate, but all your relevant gameday content will still be compiled here.

Last updated: 4:35 p.m.


BLUE CROSS AND BLUE SHIELD OF NORTH CAROLINA TOOLS TO VICTORY
4:35 p.m.

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

Video: Tools to Victory: BOS vs. CAR


CANES PROJECTED LINEUP
6:00 a.m.

We'll confirm this later today, but we don't expect much to change from two nights ago in Chicago. Cam Ward will make his 16th consecutive start in net, and Matt Tennyson is expected to draw back into the lineup.

Skinner-Rask-Rattie
Aho-Teravainen-Stempniak
McGinn-Staal-Ryan
Nordstrom-McClement-Stalberg

Slavin-Pesce
Hainsey-Faulk
Hanifin-Tennyson

Ward
Leighton


CANES HOST BRUINS TO OPEN FOUR-GAME HOMESTAND
6:00 a.m.

A crucial portion of the regular season begins tonight for the Carolina Hurricanes, as they look to work their way into the Eastern Conference wild card conversation.

The Hurricanes open a four-game homestand by hosting the Boston Bruins, the first game in a stretch of nine out of 10 that will be played against Eastern Conference opponents. Additionally, seven of those nine games will be played within the Metropolitan Division.

"We've got to make up some ground," head coach Bill Peters said after practice on Saturday. "The best way to do that is play divisional games or games in your conference and get wins in regulation."

The Hurricanes currently sit just six points out of a wild card spot, but they have to leapfrog three teams - Florida, Tampa Bay and Toronto - in order to supplant Philadelphia, as the standings sit right now. In the age of three-point games, that can be a more difficult task than meets the eye.

"Huge, huge," Peters said of the upcoming stretch. "We've got to go on a streak."

What better time to begin a new winning streak than now at home? This evening, the Hurricanes host the Boston Bruins, who bested the Florida Panthers, 4-0, on Saturday night. Brad Marchand scored two goals and Tuukka Rask made 25 saves in his fifth shutout of the season. At 21-17-4 with 46 points, the Bruins rank second in the Atlantic Division.

"We're going to have a real hard-fought game," Peters said. "They're a deep team right now."

Tonight marks the third and final meeting between the Canes and Bruins this season. The Hurricanes have earned three of a possible four points in their first two games against Boston this season, most recently defeating them 3-2 in overtime on Dec. 23.

The Hurricanes come home after a back-to-back set against Central Division opponents. They defeated the Blues 4-2 on Thursday but were edged 2-1 by the Blackhawks the next night in Chicago.

"The effort was good both nights, no question about that," Peters said.

Expect to see Cam Ward back between the pipes for the Hurricanes, as the veteran goaltender prepares to make his 16th consecutive start in net.

"We manage those energy levels, for sure," Peters said of ensuring Ward doesn't get fatigued. "Our schedule has been fairly favorable. There have been a couple back-to-backs but nothing ridiculous."

CANESPR NOTES: Boston native Noah Hanifin has recorded four points (2g, 2a) in five career games against his hometown team. He also scored the game-deciding shootout goal against the Bruins in April 2016. … Victor Rask, who has points in two straight games (1g, 1a), is expected to play in his 200th career NHL game tonight.


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