Carolina Hurricanes (6-4-1) @ New Jersey Devils (8-1-3)
This is Carolina’s first trip to the rock this season. The Canes are 6-3-1 in their last 10 and 4-2-1 on the road. Carolina is currently sitting in 1st place in the Southeast Division and in 3rd place overall in the Eastern Conference
The Devils Last Game
They rolled into Pittsburgh and behind Clarkson’s two goal night and another from Ilya Kovalchuk, the Devils completed a weekend sweep of the Penguins. You can read Scott’s recap on that game right here.
The Hurricanes Last Game
They traveled to Long Island last night to take on the Islanders which turned out to be a very high scoring affair. Carolina, who battled back a number of times in this game was able to grab the lead at 4-3 in the third and hang on for a 6-4 victory.
The Canes have speed and talent. The Staal brothers, Jeff Skinner, Alex Semin and as of very recently, Jiri Tlusty are guys that can give you problems. The Devils will need to play disciplined hockey, stay out of the box and stick to the PDB system and I think we can stop the Canes top guys and get pucks into their net. Too many chances on the PP might be a deadly scenario for us tonight, despite our recent PK success.
The Penguins were successful at clogging the middle of the ice on Saturday afternoon but then got away from that on Sunday night which allowed David Clarkson to get back to doing his thing, which apparently is pumping pucks into the net on a nightly basis. I would expect that the Canes saw that on tape and will take that approach tonight.
NJ’s Possible Line Combinations
Zubrus will be scratched again tonight and Tallinder looks to be a healthy scratch again.
Guys I Will Be Watching Tonight
For Carolina – Jiri Tlusty has 3 goals and 2 assists in his last 2 games and points in four of his last five. Jussi Jokinen is having the best season but he ALWAYS seems to be a pest when the Canes and Devils get together.
For NJ – Of course we have to keep our eye on Clarkson. The guy is having a tremendous season and you have to hope it can continue, no matter what that means come July. Elias just keeps piling up the assist numbers and while I’d like to see more goals, assists are important as well. And finally, Adam Larsson who is coming off arguably his best game of the season.