Tracking the Storm

Jokinen Expected to Miss 1-2 Weeks

Wednesday, 02.2.2011 / 1:47 PM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Jokinen Expected to Miss 1-2 Weeks
Jussi Jokinen’s most recent lower-body injury does not appear to be serious, but it will be enough to keep him out for a week or two, starting with Thursday’s contest in Toronto.

Paul Branecky
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Following Wednesday’s practice, Hurricanes coach Paul Maurice said that Jokinen would not accompany the team as it departs for Canada. Jokinen left Tuesday’s game against Boston in the first period and did not return, although he apparently wanted to play in the third period, and would undergo tests to determine severity.

Hurricanes General Manager Jim Rutherford later said that he expects Jokinen to miss 1-2 weeks as a result of those tests. The team believes that this latest setback is related to the one that kept the Finnish forward out for six games in late December and early January.

“I think it’s a re-occurrence of his old injury, and I don’t think he’s coming to Toronto with us,” said Maurice.

Both injuries came at unfortunate times for Jokinen, who has been playing his best hockey of the season since mid-December. Since coming back from his first absence on Jan. 11, he scored 12 points in 12 games, including two 3-point nights and an NHL First Star of the Week award. For the season, his points-per-game average (0.84) is the highest of his career.

The Canes may be able to take some comfort in the fact that they fared well without him last time, posting a 5-0-2 record. One of those who played well in his absence then, Zach Boychuk, will get another opportunity now as he was recalled from the American Hockey League’s Charlotte Checkers on Wednesday morning. Boychuk scored 2 points (1g, 1a) in two NHL games last week to go along with a +4 plus/minus rating.

Although they missed practice on Wednesday, Eric Staal and Tim Gleason should be available to face Toronto. Staal was given the day off after his whirlwind weekend as a captain and host player for the NHL All-Star Game in Raleigh, in addition to his responsibilities with his club team.

“I marveled at the job he did,” said Maurice of Staal. “I thought he was just a fantastic ambassador of the game and for our city. He also played 24 minutes last night and didn’t need to be on that ice (at practice).”

Gleason missed practice for personal reasons, but is expected to join the team in Toronto either Wednesday night or Thursday morning. Given the teams’ last meeting on Jan. 24 that featured a game misconduct penalty for Gleason’s punch on the Maple Leafs’ Nikolai Kulemin, he may get an interesting reception from the home crowd. The players may not be too happy with him either, with Clarke MacArthur leaving that game “disgusted” with Gleason and feeling as though he was “not that smart.”

As far as the Hurricanes are concerned, they’ll just be hoping to maintain their excellent 13-3-1 record against the 10 teams behind them in the overall standings as of Tuesday’s games.

“I hope I’m not jinxing things, but when you split our record, I’m far more concerned about our ability to beat the high-end teams,” said Maurice. “We’ve mentally prepared very well for the teams below us in the standings and played well.”


SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

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