Pre-Game Skate: HURRICANES vs. PITTSBURGH
CAROLINA HURRICANES (6-4-2-2, 16 pts.)
PITTSBURGH PENGUINS (7-2-2-1, 17 pts.)*
Saturday, November 9 at 7:00 p.m. at RBC Center
*Through games of Nov. 7
Left wing Jan Hlavac made his Hurricanes debut on Thursday against Buffalo, earning an assist on O’Neill’s game-winning goal. Hlavac was injured on the scoring play and left the game with a bruised thigh. Hurricanes netminder Kevin Weekes is 5-1-2 in his last eight games with a goals against average of 1.46 (12g, 492 min.) and a save percentage of .953 (12G, 257 SA). Weekes recorded his first regular season shutout with the Hurricanes on Thursday against Buffalo, stopping 26 shots.
|Nov. 9||Saturday||RBC Center||10:30 a.m.|
|Nov. 10||Sunday||RBC Center||TBA|
|Nov. 11||Monday||RBC Center||TBA|
|Nov. 12||Tuesday||RBC Center||10:30 a.m.|
|Nov. 13||Wednesday||RecZone||11:00 a.m.|
ON THE AIR
Television: Fox Sports Net (N.C. & S.C.)
Radio: WKIX 102.3 FM (Goldsboro); WKXU 101-1 FM (Burlington); WDTF 570-AM (Raleigh); WMFD 630-AM (Wilmington); WDLZ 98.3-FM (Murfreesboro); WSJS 600-AM (Winston-Salem); WRUP 97.9-FM (New Bern/Morehead City); WSTK 910-AM (Jacksonville); WNMX 106.1 (Charlotte)
Carolina has come on strong in its last nine games (5-1-2-1) and has moved into a tie with Tampa Bay for first place in the Southeast Division heading into Friday night’s games. The Hurricanes’ penalty kill has been successful in 74-of-85 (87.1%) shorthanded situations this season and was ranked fifth in the NHL through games of Nov. 7. Netminder Kevin Weekes ranks second in the league in save percentage (.942), fourth in goals against average (1.76) and is tied for fourth in wins (6) through games of Nov. 7.
CAROLINA AT HOME: 4-2-2-1
CAROLINA ON THE ROAD: 2-2-0-1
CAROLINA ON THE POWER PLAY: 14-of-90 (15.6%)
CAROLINA SHORTHANDED: 74-of-85 (87.1%)
CAROLINA INJURY UPDATE
Josef Vasicek missed the game vs. Buffalo (11/7) due to back spasms. He is day-to-day. Erik Cole left Thursday's game vs. Buffalo (11/7) with a bruised thigh. He is day-to-day. Jan Hlavac left Thursday's game vs. Buffalo (11/7) with a bruised thigh. He is day-to-day.
CAROLINA / PITTSBURGH NOTES
The Carolina Hurricanes and the Pittsburgh Penguins meet tonight for the first of four games this season. Carolina won last year’s season series with Pittsburgh 2-0-2, earning a pair of ties at home and defeating the Penguins twice at Mellon Arena. The two teams played to a 2-2 tie on Nov. 6 and a 3-3 tie on Feb. 5 in Raleigh. The Hurricanes defeated the Penguins 7-0 on Dec. 16 and 3-1 on March 7 in Pittsburgh. Jeff O’Neill was the leading scorer in last year’s season series with six points (3g, 3a) in four games. Ron Francis tallied four goals against his former team last season. The Hurricanes are 35-41-10-0 all-time against Pittsburgh, with a 19-20-5-0 record at home and a 16-21-5-0 record on the road.
The Penguins play at Tampa Bay on Friday before heading to Carolina. Both Mario Lemieux and Alexei Kovalev enter Friday's game with 11-game point streaks on the line. Those streaks are the longest in the league this season. Lemieux has an 11-game assist streak as well (21 assists), the longest assist streak in the league this season and the second longest of his career. Pittsburgh has the top power play unit in the league, scoring 29.9% of the time (20 for 67) and is first in the league on the road at 38.1% (8 for 21).
SCORING LEADERS AND GOALTENDERS