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Wild vs. Hurricanes
Tracking the Storm

'Recovery Day' Breaks Up Intensity

Monday, 09.26.2011 / 12:27 PM / Tracking the Storm
By Michael Smith
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\'Recovery Day\' Breaks Up Intensity

Following their first win of the preseason, the Carolina Hurricanes had two light-hearted skates today that saw the defenseman and forwards split up into two groups.

Michael Smith
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All defenseman still on the training camp roster were on the ice at 9:15 this morning with Cam Ward and Brian Boucher in the net. There was a lot of focus on shots from the point, and one drill featured push-ups as a punishment for missing the net.

“We needed a bit of a recovery day,” head coach Paul Maurice said. “The defensemen in today’s practice handled the puck more than they would in 10 regular practices. So it was all about skill development and working the puck and their feet.”

After coming off an illness, Derek Joslin should be in the lineup Wednesday night in Winnipeg. Joslin will be paired with Jamie McBain in tomorrow’s second skate, a pairing that could carry over to the preseason re-match with the Jets.

“I’ve been itching to get at it,” Joslin said. “I’ve been feeling really good for the past week, and I’ve been working hard.

“I missed a week, but I wasn’t just at home doing nothing,” he said. “I was at [Raleigh Center Ice] skating and working out. It’s not a game situation, but I stayed in shape, and I’m back now skating with the guys, doing battle drills and getting myself ready.”

With Joslin back in the mix, the battle for a defensive spot has gotten more competitive, but Joslin is confident that his play from last season and work thus far in camp will give him the edge.

After coming over from San Jose in February, Joslin played in 17 games for the Hurricanes down the stretch. In that period, he recorded five points (1g, 4a), was plus-seven and regularly logged nearly 20 minutes of ice time per game.

“I’m a year stronger. For the past three years with San Jose I was that bubble guy,” he said. “I think I handled that well. I came in last year and helped the team as best I could to make that playoff push. This year, confidence wise, I feel good.”

All forwards took the ice around 10:15, and just like the defensive group, they concluded practice with a shootout. The losers had to do push-ups while the winners stood over them and watched, a jocular moment in an otherwise intense camp.

“Today’s practice, I wanted them feeling light,” Maurice said. “They did have a hard off-ice workout, and tomorrow we’ll get back to some intensity.

“There was something on the line today, and that’s when they had a little bit of fun,” Maurice said of the shootouts. “Some unusual moves, to say the least.”

After saying Anthony Stewart had the best game of his preseason, Maurice had an extended conversation with the forward at center ice during practice.

“I liked his game last night. I thought he was on the puck a lot more,” Maurice said. “He’s so fast as a big man – unusually fast – especially in his first 30-40 feet. I thought he used that speed very effectively last night.”

“I felt light on my feet. I’m feeling more confident with the puck every game that I’ve been playing so far,” Stewart said. “The hands usually come second to me and the legs are always going. I’m almost hitting game-stride here.

“I have to get in on the forecheck and make some room for the smaller forwards. The more space they have, the more successful they’ll be.”

Tomorrow’s skates are slated for 9 and 11 a.m. before the team heads off to Winnipeg in the early afternoon.

SCHEDULE

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 MTL 64 41 18 5 172 142 87
2 NYR 63 39 17 7 197 155 85
3 NYI 65 41 21 3 207 182 85
4 TBL 65 39 20 6 213 171 84
5 DET 62 36 15 11 182 160 83
6 PIT 63 36 18 9 182 158 81
7 WSH 65 35 20 10 193 162 80
8 BOS 62 31 22 9 165 161 71
9 FLA 64 28 23 13 156 181 69
10 OTT 62 28 23 11 176 167 67
11 PHI 64 27 25 12 170 186 66
12 NJD 64 27 27 10 144 165 64
13 TOR 64 26 33 5 173 195 57
14 CBJ 63 26 33 4 163 201 56
15 CAR 62 24 31 7 144 167 55
16 BUF 64 19 40 5 123 215 43

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Faulk 62 12 28 -18 40
E. Staal 57 18 20 -12 38
E. Lindholm 61 11 16 -18 27
J. Skinner 57 16 10 -17 26
N. Gerbe 58 7 16 -10 23
R. Nash 59 7 15 -10 22
V. Rask 60 8 12 -16 20
J. McClement 62 6 13 3 19
J. Staal 26 4 12 -4 16
A. Nestrasil 34 4 11 4 15
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 17 20 4 .911 2.43
A. Khudobin 7 11 3 .905 2.61