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Nodl Possibly Out a Week, Pitkanen Could Play Wednesday

Monday, 03.19.2012 / 3:04 PM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Michael Smith
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Nodl Possibly Out a Week, Pitkanen Could Play Wednesday
The Carolina Hurricanes might be losing a forward for at least a week, but they could also gain a defenseman in the coming days.

Michael Smith
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Forward Andreas Nodl left Sunday night’s game in Winnipeg after being hit by Zach Bogosian just over halfway into the second period. Bogosian was given a five-minute major charging penalty and a game misconduct. Nodl did not return. He did not practice on Monday but was present for the team picture.

Asked if he had any further news about Nodl, head coach Kirk Muller said, “I actually don’t. We’re checking to see how he is.”

Nodl had to be helped off the ice and seemed dazed by the hit.

“There are symptoms [of a concussion],” Muller said. “We’ll go through the same procedure: get him in there and get him tested.

“Hopefully it’s short, and hopefully it’s not [a concussion].”

Despite the devastating nature of the hit and the fact that it was deemed illegal in-game via the penalties, Bogosian did not receive supplementary discipline from the National Hockey League. This marks the third time this season Bogosian has escaped suspension; the first time, he elbowed Cody Eakin of the Washington Capitals, and the second time he boarded Pierre Marc-Bouchard of the Minnesota Wild. In both cases, the League determined the players had made themselves vulnerable to the hits. That didn’t seem to be in the case Sunday night when Bogosian leapt off his feet into Nodl.

“It’s not our call as coaches to make the decisions, but we’ve got a guy who could possibly be out a week from it,” Muller said. “To me, I thought it was clear that he left his feet and clearly a charge. But, I guess they saw it differently.

“There are guidelines, and everyone is trying to follow them. It’s a quick game, and things happen quick,” Muller continued. “I guess it’s not the same type of reading I saw from the hit.”

While Nodl is likely to at least miss the team's three games this week, defenseman Joni Pitkanen could play as early as Wednesday.

Pitkanen has been out of the lineup since Dec. 6, missing 44 games with a concussion and then knee surgery. Recovered from the concussion for awhile now, Pitkanen has been working to regain the strength in his knee.

In practice on Monday, he participated in a set one-on-one drill with Jeff Skinner, where they took turns protecting the puck from one another. Pitkanen said it's a drill he’s worked on for the past few days, a good physical measuring stick for his progress.

Asked how soon he could return, a week was suggested, but Pitkanen responded with a smile, “Maybe sooner.”

Muller confirmed this timetable and said if Pitkanen is physically ready, he could play Wednesday. With Jaroslav Spacek out with a lower-body injury, Pitkanen’s return would signal Bobby Sanguinetti’s return to Charlotte.

Tuesday will be a day off for the Hurricanes before they take on the Florida Panthers on Wednesday at PNC Arena. The Canes have yet to beat the Panthers in four tries this season, but after winning three games in a row – including two come-from-behind victories on the road – the team’s confidence is running high.

“Those were gutsy wins,” Muller said. “We travel to all these cities, and everyone keeps talking about who’s going to make it and who’s not, and no one ever mentions Carolina. Our boys in there really take that to heart and believe that they have a shot still. I believe those games coming back showed the fire that they have.”



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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