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Records on the Line vs. Islanders

Tuesday, 04.7.2009 / 11:26 AM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Records on the Line vs. Islanders
Paul Maurice audio

As the Hurricanes play their first game since wrapping up a playoff spot against the New York Islanders tonight, a few franchise records are on the line.

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A win would be the team’s ninth in a row, tying the record set twice in 2005-06. It would also be Cam Ward’s 39th, which would break Martin Gerber’s mark set that same season.

With the postseason just around the corner, any such comparisons to that Stanley Cup champion team should be welcomed.

Tonight’s game presents an interesting challenge for the Canes, who universally agree that they don’t want to take their foot off the gas whatsoever, even after securing their place among the Eastern Conference’s top eight. However, Coach Paul Maurice said that a small lapse or two against a young, hard working team tonight wouldn’t come as a complete shock.

“I think we’re going to have to deal with it as the game goes on,” he said. “It would be foolish to think that based on the two months that we’ve just gone through that there isn’t going to be a little exhale. We’ve talked about it before and we talked about it yesterday, but we’ll do everything we can to deal with it.”

The Canes have a few lineup changes tonight, as defenseman Frantisek Kaberle will appear in his first game since March 12 at the expense of Joe Corvo. Corvo did participate in the morning skate today, but “is not 100 percent,” according to Maurice. Patrick Eaves, who missed the team’s last game with an upper body injury, is back in for Ryan Bayda. Although he missed practice yesterday, Tuomo Ruutu will play.

When the Islanders last came to town on March 20, they were playing some of their best hockey of the season despite their place as the NHL’s last-placed team. They’ve posted a record of 2-4-1 since then, indicating that run may be over. 

However, they gave the Canes all they could handle a few weeks ago, outplaying them in the second period in a way they haven’t been outplayed in a few months, so that capability remains. The Islanders are a very fast team, and one doesn’t necessarily have to be a superstar to score on uncontested breakaways.

Key defenseman Mark Streit has been nursing a groin injury but is expected to play tonight. Leading goal scorer Kyle Okposo, also with a groin injury, is not.

SCHEDULE

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 WSH 51 38 9 4 166 114 80
2 FLA 52 31 15 6 143 115 68
3 NYR 52 29 18 5 148 134 63
4 TBL 51 29 18 4 137 118 62
5 BOS 52 28 18 6 151 137 62
6 NYI 51 27 18 6 143 127 60
7 DET 52 26 18 8 130 131 60
8 PIT 51 26 18 7 132 130 59
9 NJD 53 26 20 7 119 120 59
10 CAR 54 24 21 9 130 142 57
11 MTL 54 26 24 4 143 143 56
12 PHI 51 23 19 9 121 133 55
13 OTT 53 24 23 6 148 165 54
14 BUF 53 21 26 6 120 139 48
15 TOR 51 19 23 9 117 140 47
16 CBJ 54 21 28 5 135 168 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Faulk 54 15 19 -13 34
J. Skinner 54 19 12 -3 31
V. Rask 52 12 19 0 31
J. Staal 54 12 19 8 31
K. Versteeg 53 10 21 1 31
E. Staal 54 9 21 0 30
E. Lindholm 54 8 16 -9 24
A. Nestrasil 47 7 12 0 19
J. Nordstrom 43 5 9 2 14
R. Hainsey 54 3 11 -11 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 15 11 6 .908 2.38
E. Lack 9 10 3 .901 2.74
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