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Hurricanes aim to snap 3-game slide vs. Lightning
(SportsNetwork.com) - The hobbled Carolina Hurricanes will try to put the brakes on a three-game losing streak when they host the Tampa Bay Lightning in Friday's clash at PNC Arena.
The Hurricanes have lost three straight games -- all in regulation -- to match an 0-1-2 stretch from Oct. 11-15 for their longest win drought of the young season.
Carolina is playing without its top two goaltenders, as both starter Cam Ward and backup Anton Khudobin are currently sidelined with lower-body injuries. That has left Justin Peters as the de facto No. 1 and he is 0-3-0 with a 3.13 goals against average and .893 save percentage this season.
With Ward and Khudobin still weeks away from returning, Peters expects to see his third straight start in net on Friday.
Carolina's Jeff Skinner also is sidelined with an upper-body injury and the speedy winger will miss a third straight game on Friday. Skinner, who has three goals and six assists this season, will sit out Saturday's road tilt against the New York Rangers as well.
The 'Canes could get forward Radek Dvorak back Friday after he sat out Monday's loss to Pittsburgh with a lower-body injury.
Carolina lost a 3-1 decision Monday against the visiting Penguins. Nathan Gerbe had a power-play goal to account for all of the Hurricanes' offense, while Peters surrendered all three goals on 29 shots.
"We're not giving up much, but when we do, like tonight, the good players capitalize on us," Carolina head coach Kirk Muller remarked. "We need more from other people as well."
The setback dropped Carolina's home record to 1-2-3 this season.
Tampa Bay will try to get back in the win column Friday after losing a 2-1 regulation decision Tuesday night in New Jersey. Jaromir Jagr and Adam Henrique scored one goal apiece for the Devils, while New Jersey goaltender Martin Brodeur only needed to make 16 saves for the win.
Steven Stamkos scored his ninth goal of the season for Tampa Bay, but Ben Bishop allowed both goals on 22 shots in the setback.
"We have a game plan in place and it gets a little frustrating when we don't execute our plan," Lightning head coach Jon Cooper said. "If you're going to get less than 20 shots in a hockey game, that's not very hard to play against."
Tampa Bay had won three straight prior to Tuesday's loss and has taken four of five and nine of the last 13 meetings with the Hurricanes. Carolina and the Lightning used to play in the same division -- the now-defunct Southeast -- before this season's realignment placed Tampa in the Atlantic and moved the 'Canes to the Metropolitan Division.
Carolina halted a four-game series losing streak against the Bolts with a 3-2 win in Tampa win the clubs last met on April 21 of last season. The Lightning have claimed four straight and seven of the past eight encounters in Raleigh.
11/01 10:48:54 ET