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Wednesday Practice: Ruutu Out, Boychuk In

Wednesday, 10.15.2008 / 1:08 PM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Wednesday Practice: Ruutu Out, Boychuk In

With Rod Brind’Amour still getting a rest from practice and Tuomo Ruutu held out due to a vague injury (hip, perhaps?) lines at practice had a very different look today.

Paul Branecky
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In an illustration of what GM Jim Rutherford said yesterday about needing to add a forward in case of injury, defenseman Joni Pitkanen actually took Ruutu’s spot on the right wing with Eric Staal and Ray Whitney.  It’s nothing the Canes are planning to use in games anytime soon, but coach Peter Laviolette said it was needed just to have enough forwards on the ice.

“We’re not really looking at anything,” said Laviolette.  “We’re banged up right now and we had a couple of guys that didn’t go out there just to keep practice moving along.”

Laviolette said he didn’t believe Ruutu’s latest injury was the same groin issue that kept him out of the preseason schedule, and that he hopes he’ll be able to play in the next game at Los Angeles on Friday.

”We’ll give him another day off, and the most important thing is to get him ready for the games coming up on the west coast,” said Laviolette.  “I think just trying to give him a breather and protect him a little bit.”

Zach Boychuk practiced today on a line with Matt Cullen and Patrick Eaves, and according to Laviolette, will make his NHL debut on Friday.  Laviolette said the team was still in the process of figuring out where he’ll fit in to the lineup.

Assuming Ruutu is healthy enough to play Friday night and nothing else comes up between now and then (namely an injury or trade), that would leave another forward out of the lineup.  Wade Brookbank and Dan LaCouture have been low men on the ice time chart so far, averaging only 2:40 and 5:08 per game, respectively.

Laviolette also said Cam Ward will play Friday night, and then he would “figure it out from there.”


 

SCHEDULE

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - NYR 73 47 19 7 224 168 101
2 MTL 75 46 21 8 197 167 100
3 TBL 75 46 22 7 244 194 99
4 NYI 75 44 26 5 228 208 93
5 PIT 74 40 23 11 204 186 91
6 DET 73 39 22 12 212 201 90
7 WSH 74 40 24 10 215 182 90
8 OTT 73 37 25 11 213 195 85
9 BOS 74 36 25 13 195 193 85
10 FLA 74 34 26 14 184 202 82
11 PHI 75 30 29 16 196 216 76
12 CBJ 74 35 35 4 203 230 74
13 NJD 74 31 31 12 166 189 74
14 CAR 73 27 36 10 170 201 64
15 TOR 75 27 42 6 194 241 60
16 BUF 74 20 46 8 141 249 48

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
E. Staal 68 20 27 -13 47
J. Faulk 73 14 32 -18 46
E. Lindholm 72 16 20 -21 36
J. Skinner 68 18 12 -22 30
V. Rask 71 11 19 -12 30
R. Nash 67 8 17 -10 25
N. Gerbe 69 7 17 -13 24
J. McClement 73 7 13 -3 20
A. Nestrasil 45 7 13 4 20
J. Staal 37 4 15 -9 19
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 19 21 5 .910 2.43
A. Khudobin 8 15 5 .903 2.62