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Lineup Set for Pre-season Opener

Monday, 09.20.2010 / 1:46 PM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Lineup Set for Pre-season Opener
Much like the new groups they’ve used for the last two days of training camp, the Hurricanes’ lineup for the first exhibition game of the season will display an equal mix of young and veteran talent.

Paul Branecky
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Each of the game’s four centers, Zac Dalpe, Riley Nash, Jeff Skinner and Jon Matsumoto, will be making their exhibition debut with experienced wingers like Tom Kostopoulos, Chad LaRose and Tuomo Ruutu.  They’ll be joined by more experienced roster hopefuls such as Drayson Bowman, Zach Boychuk and Bobby SanguinettiCam Ward will start in goal, but is expected to make way for Justin Pogge at some point.

The full lineup can be found below, although coach Paul Maurice cautioned that the group will be subject to change based on health. Understandably, a handful of players are experiencing some soreness after a brisk beginning to camp, including Erik Cole, who was slotted to play in Patrick Dwyer’s spot against Florida on Tuesday but will be held out as a precaution.

“They’ve all got their cell phones with them,” said Maurice. “If somebody gets a cramp or a groin, then we’re going to take them out.”

Maurice added that Cole is expected back at practice tomorrow and should play in Nashville on Thursday.

Now that the game schedule has approached, the coaching staff dialed down the pace during Monday’s practices relative to the intense first weekend. However, those not slated to play a game on any given night should still expect a thorough workout that morning.

“They hit the wall about halfway through those breakout/regroup drills and you could see it,” said Maurice of Monday’s group. “We pulled them off, and guys that don’t play will go back out tomorrow.”

Not that it should come as any surprise, but Ruutu seemed raring to go for Tuesday’s game. The summer was a bit longer for the Finnish winger, who shut his season down in late March for shoulder surgery. Originally expected to miss four to five months, he estimates having been back on the ice full-tilt for the last six weeks.

“I expected to be back in the lineup,” he said. “It was good to get the surgery done early because I wanted to be ready for this season, but also because I didn’t have to rush myself to get back into games.”

Maurice said that he expects Ruutu and other veterans to play between four and six of the team’s seven exhibition games. By default, one of those will be the Oct. 4 game in St. Petersburg. 

Other lineup spots will go to the large group of younger players that the coaches believe capable of making the team, but there may not be enough time to allow every play in camp to suit up.

“This is the challenge, because we really do feel that we have a number of players that have an opportunity to make our team that weren’t full-time players for us last year,” said Maurice. “In order to do that, they need to play enough exhibition games, but at the same time you can’t sacrifice the fact that your established guys need a certain amount of work to feel like they’re ready.” 

TENTATIVE GAME LINEUP 

LaRose – Skinner – Dwyer
Bowman – Nash – Ruutu
O’Sullivan – Dalpe – Kostopoulos
Boychuk – Matsumoto – Samson

Gleason – Sanguinetti
McBain – Babchuk
Borer – Harrison 

Ward
Pogge


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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