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Gameday: Hurricanes at Oilers

by Michael Smith @MSmithCanes /

EDMONTON - Strangely, we were kind of just here.

This is the gameday hub, where you can find all the latest news and information you need to know for tonight's tilt between the Edmonton Oilers and Carolina Hurricanes. Make a regular stop throughout the day, as we update this hub with notes, photos and more as puck drop draws near.

We'll be rinkside at the palatial Rogers Place for the Canes' morning skate at 11:30 a.m. local time, which is 1:30 p.m. on the East Coast.

Last updated: 7:20 p.m.

7:20 p.m.

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

1. Be Hungry

Jeff Skinner said several times after the Winnipeg game that the Hurricanes weren't hungry enough in front of the net. Scoring goals against Edmonton will require the Canes to have that drive to the net to cash in on rebounds.

2. Respect, But Only So Much

Connor McDavid is the fastest player I've seen with the puck in the NHL. He has the ability to make defenders look silly, so maintain a tight gap on No. 97 and don't give him too much room. Expect to see a lot of Jaccob Slavin and Brett Pesce on McDavid; both do a tremendous job of taking away time and space.

3. Make Them Chase You

A lot is made about the Oilers' offensive prowess and how it's tough to stop. The best way to defend against their attack is to force them to defend in their zone. The Hurricanes need to value puck possession in the offensive end and pressure the Oiler defense.

4:45 p.m.

The time has come for Martin Necas.

The 18-year-old forward will make his National Hockey League debut on Tuesday night when the Carolina Hurricanes take on the Edmonton Oilers.

"I'm looking forward to it. It will be fun," he said after the team's morning skate. "I'll enjoy the game and hopefully we get the win."


4:00 p.m.

Head coach Bill Peters spoke with the media in Edmonton this morning. Here are some highlights from the scrum.

On Martin Necas' NHL debut: "He's excited. He's going to help us. He brings a lot of speed and skill, so I think he's going to have a positive impact in the lineup tonight."

On Cam Ward starting: "He's done a lot of good things for our organization. We haven't gotten him in yet, and we have to get him in a few times this month. There's no better time than today."

On the fact that the Canes have only played three games so far: "It's very hard. We're not sharp offensively. We're not sharp with the puck or with timing. You practice as much as we have and try to get game situations, but it's not the same. It will be nice once we get busier for sure."

On tonight's opponent: "They're a dangerous team. I thought they had real good looks against Ottawa. It just didn't go in is what it looked like to me. We've got our own sets of challenges. Right now we've got to generate offense and have the puck a little more than we have over the last couple of games."

On the status of Trevor van Riemsdyk: "Trevor rejoined us here yesterday. We'll see if he can clear and be available for the rest of the trip."

1:35 p.m.

The Hurricanes will stick with the lineup changes they made in practice on Monday. Here's how the team will line up tonight.




Trevor van Riemsdyk joined the team in Edmonton and participated in the morning skate. He could return as early as Thursday in Calgary.

More from the room soon!

Tweet from @NHLCanes: See how the #Canes lined up for today's morning skate in Edmonton ��� #CARvsEDM

12:00 a.m.

The Carolina Hurricanes' four-game road trip continues on Tuesday night in Edmonton, the team's second visit to the Western Canadian city in three weeks.

It's a bit odd for the Hurricanes to have traveled here twice in such a short period of time, but the two teams squared off twice in the preseason. The first of the two matches was perhaps the Canes' most complete game of the exhibition season; from start to finish, it was a dominant effort for the Hurricanes in a 6-2 win.

And even though both teams iced near-NHL lineups that night, it's still the preseason, but the Canes will be looking to replicate that effort on Tuesday night.

"I think we can use some of those clips from head-to-head," head coach Bill Peters said after a Monday practice in Edmonton. "It's always better to use head-to-head clips, and that's what we'll do tomorrow."

After earning three of a possible four points at home in their first two games of the season, the Hurricanes hit the road for a four-game trip and suffered their first regulation loss in Winnipeg by a score of 2-1.

Perhaps some of that offensive magic the Canes had on display in the preseason at Rogers Place - both Jordan Staal and Teuvo Teravainen each scored twice in that victory - can be rediscovered in the first regular-season meeting between these two cross-conference foes.

"We're not spending enough time in the offensive zone. We're not shooting the puck, getting to the net or staying at the net," Peters said. "We talked about it, and I expect it to be better moving forward. It needs to be better. If we're going to score, we've got to get pucks and bodies to the net."

If Monday's practice is any indication, the Hurricanes might make a pair of changes to their forward lines, and Martin Necas could make his NHL debut. Necas centered a line with Sebastian Aho and Elias Lindholm in practice. Additionally, Josh Jooris made an appearance on the fourth line with Marcus Kruger and Joakim Nordstrom.

There is a potential change looming on the back-end as well, with Trevor Carrick, recently recalled from Charlotte, looking to draw into the lineup alongside Haydn Fleury.

"We've been OK defensively for the most part. We've got some things that have crept into our game that we've got to get rectified here right away," Peters said. "We haven't given up much, but we have to find a way to be more dangerous with the puck and more creative and committed offensively."

The Oilers shut out the Calgary Flames 3-0 in their season opener but have since dropped three straight in regulation, the most recent a 6-1 loss to the Ottawa Senators at home.

"It's two teams that haven't liked their recent results," Peters said of Tuesday's match-up. "I think it will be a real hard-fought game with a lot of emotion, and it should be well-played."

CANESPR NOTES: Jeff Skinner, who scored his 182nd career goal in his 500th career NHL game, paces the Canes with 11 points (7g, 4a) in 10 career games against the Oilers. … Teravainen is expected to play in his 200th career game tonight.





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