Tracking the Storm

Walker Expects to Play Tomorrow

Monday, 03.2.2009 / 12:25 PM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Walker Expects to Play Tomorrow
Scott Walker went through his first full practice with the team on Monday morning, and expects to be in the lineup against the Washington Capitals tomorrow night.

Paul Branecky
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Walker had been skating on his own for over a week, but with the Canes in a crowded stretch of games on the schedule, the team hadn’t had a regular practice since he resumed skating on January 21.

“You need to get out for 45-50 minutes with a high heart rate and get some bump and some real pace to your game,” said Coach Paul Maurice. “You can skate on your own and skate forever, but it’s just like coming in after summer hockey – you’ve got to come into training camp before you can get in, and then you’re still sore.”

Coming back into the lineup at this time of year will be a tough test for Walker, as the gritty winger will be thrust into an intense atmosphere against a physical team right off the hop.

“It’s too important to come out and then try to get your legs and the speed of the game, but in some ways it could be better,” he said. “There’s that excitement in the room and there’s so many other things going on that I could feed off the guys, the adrenaline of the game and the whole atmosphere of what we’re trying to do.

“Washington is a strong physical team, and I’m excited for the challenge.  You only know if you do it, and I’m excited for tomorrow.”

The departure of Jussi Jokinen back to Finland to deal with the death of his father left the team with heavy hearts before today’s practice.

First, we’re all thinking of him and his family in such a difficult time,” said Maurice. “It’s very difficult, especially with travel when you’ve got to sit on a plane for that long and realize what you’ve just suffered through.

“In terms of what it’ll do to our lineup, we’ll get through here and see how Scotty Walker does, and that will give us enough bodies if we need to. We’ll consider another center iceman though, just to give us better balance and be able to use four lines.”

Walker skated on a centerless fourth line today at practice with Ryan Bayda and Tim Conboy. If the Hurricanes do recall a center from Albany, likely Dwight Helminen, one forward on that line will probably exit the lineup against the Capitals.


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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 248 187 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 214 184 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 259 206 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 237 199 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 245 224 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 231 211 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 232 208 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 217 204 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 209 201 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 198 213 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 227 248 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 212 223 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 176 209 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 183 219 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 206 257 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 153 269 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
E. Staal 77 23 31 -13 54
J. Faulk 82 15 34 -19 49
E. Lindholm 81 17 22 -23 39
V. Rask 80 11 22 -14 33
J. Skinner 77 18 13 -24 31
N. Gerbe 78 10 18 -14 28
R. Nash 68 8 17 -10 25
J. Staal 46 6 18 -6 24
J. Liles 57 2 20 -9 22
J. McClement 82 7 14 -7 21
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 22 24 5 .910 2.40
A. Khudobin 8 17 6 .900 2.72