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Canes Getting Look at Final Group

Tuesday, 09.28.2010 / 12:18 PM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Canes Getting Look at Final Group
Now that the group in training camp is down to a more manageable number that resembles an in-season roster, line combinations and roles have begun to come into play.

Paul Branecky
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The forward groupings, which can be found on our online depth chart here, are still a work in progress according to coach Paul Maurice. However, it appears they will be given a trial run over the final three exhibition games to see which players gel with one another.

Most notable was the use of Patrick O’Sullivan on a line with Eric Staal and Erik Cole. The winger, who is hoping to stick with the team after signing a two-way contract on the eve of training camp, has been impressive throughout the preseason and will at least get a chance to stay in that spot.

“We’re going to look at it,” said Maurice. “There’s no question he has the ability to do it, and he’s been working hard. Now we’re looking at chemistry.”

In the first special teams practices of training camp, O’Sullivan was also on the primary unit with Staal and Brandon Sutter. The second group had Jussi Jokinen centering Tuomo Ruutu and Jeff Skinner, the latter of which had “a (heck) of a practice,” according to Maurice.

Defensive pairings on the power play were Joni Pitkanen with Joe Corvo and Anton Babchuk with Jamie McBain.

“What we really want to develop is a two-line power play team,” said Maurice. “Running one line for 1:30, they get worn down, frustrated very easily and scouted very easily.”

Back to even-strength lines, Zach Boychuk, Patrick Dwyer and Jiri Tlusty rotated in and out of set units. Maurice is hopeful that Tlusty, who was skating full-contact for the first time on Tuesday, could play by the end of the week.

“I don’t know how I feel about him yet,” said Maurice. “If he got through today and doesn’t feel sore tomorrow, then we’re on track. We’ll push him real hard for a couple of days and if he feels good, (he’ll play) Friday.”

Sergei Samsonov, who is dealing with a strained neck, was not at practice on Tuesday. Maurice said he was still uncertain as to a timetable on his return, and was not sure if he would make the trip overseas.

“We’re going to have to monitor that and see where he’s at, but if he’s not close, there really is no point in having him fly to Europe and back to watch hockey games if he’s injured,” Maurice said.

If the team chooses to have Samsonov stay home, a final cut from training camp would not be necessary as the group would then be down to the maximum of 25. If a cut is to be made, Maurice said that it would likely occur on Thursday.


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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
K. Versteeg 63 11 22 -6 33
E. Staal 63 10 23 -3 33
J. Nordstrom 71 10 14 1 24
A. Nestrasil 55 9 14 4 23
R. Nash 64 9 13 -5 22
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 23 17 10 .909 2.41
E. Lack 12 14 6 .901 2.81