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'Recovery Day' Breaks Up Intensity

Monday, 09.26.2011 / 12:27 PM ET / 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.

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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