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Laviolette: Injured Trio Back Tonight

Wednesday, 11.12.2008 / 11:20 AM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Laviolette: Injured Trio Back Tonight

Coach Peter Laviolette confirmed this morning that Matt Cullen, Joni Pitkanen and Brandon Sutter will all be back in the lineup tonight against Washington – a big boost as the Canes try to reclaim sole possession of the Southeast Division lead.

Paul Branecky
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”We’ve been short on numbers, so it will be good to get a full lineup back in there,” said Laviolette.  “Especially up front, it gives us more depth at center and more depth to the forwards.”

None of the returning players were available for last week’s heartbreaking 3-2 loss to Washington, with the Canes will try to avenge tonight at the RBC Center.  Other than the last few minutes of that game, Laviolette doesn’t see much his team needs to do differently this time around..

He was satisfied with the way his team had played until Alex Semin’s shot took an unlucky deflection of Niclas Wallin’s skate and into the net with just over two minutes left.  Even though the Capitals had tied it up, it wasn’t a glaring defensive breakdown that led to the goal.

It was after the Capitals tied it that things started to slip away.

“They just stole the momentum,” said Laviolette

At that point the Hurricanes, suddenly on their heels against a rejuvenated Washington team playing at home, may have gotten away from the things that had given them the lead up until that point – things that they’ll try to do again tonight.

”If you back off thinking you’re going to play it safe, you’re going to find out that you’ve given up your zone too much and you’re giving up too much ice time in your own end,” said Laviolette.  “I think being aggressive in our system and being aggressive defensively is one of the keys to trying to shut them down.”

No Sergei Fedorov tonight for Washington, which is a break for the Canes.  We discussed his resurgence with the Capitals a bit in our last podcast – even though he looked like he might be done a few years ago, he seems to be back now.  Shaone Morrisonn is also out, and Brent Johnson looks to start opposite Michael Leighton in goal.

Update: If tonight's lineups are any indication, Dwight Helminen will be reassigned to Albany before the game.  While he's played well, there's no more room at center with Cullen and Sutter back.  Patrick Dwyer will play wing with Sutter on the fourth line and kill penalties.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Skinner 82 28 23 -2 51
V. Rask 80 21 27 -6 48
J. Staal 82 20 28 6 48
E. Lindholm 82 11 28 -23 39
J. Faulk 64 16 21 -22 37
J. Nordstrom 71 10 14 1 24
A. Nestrasil 55 9 14 4 23
R. Nash 64 9 13 -5 22
N. Hanifin 79 4 18 -14 22
J. Slavin 63 2 18 1 20
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 23 17 10 .909 2.41
E. Lack 12 14 6 .901 2.81