NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Friday, January 7th
(All times eastern)
Carolina Hurricanes (18-15-6) at Florida Panthers (18-18-2), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - A pair of Southeast Division foes will meet for the second
time this week, as the Carolina Hurricanes visit the Florida Panthers tonight
at BankAtlantic Center.
The Panthers visited Raleigh on Monday night and were able to claim an
overtime victory against the Hurricanes. It marked the fourth time the
Panthers and Carolina have met this season and Florida's recent win evened the
season series at two games apiece.
Despite Monday's loss, Carolina has still taken two of three and four of the
last seven overall meetings against the Panthers. However, Florida has claimed
victory in six of its last eight home tilts against the 'Canes.
Carolina and Florida enter tonight as the fourth and fifth-place teams,
respectively, in the Southeast Division. With 38 points, the Panthers are four
behind the Hurricanes in the standings.
Bryan Allen scored 1:16 into overtime to give the Florida the 4-3 win over
Carolina at the RBC Center. Cory Stillman had a goal and an assist while
Dennis Wideman and Chris Higgins each lit the lamp for the Panthers.
Scott Clemmensen stopped 34 shots to help Florida gain the full two points.
Zach Boychuk, Zac Dalpe and Jay Harrison each had a goal for the Hurricanes,
and Cam Ward was tagged with all four goals on 28 shots in the loss.
Tonight's test is not a home-and-home series, however, as both clubs have
played other teams since Monday's clash. Carolina earned a point in its
overtime loss to the New York Rangers on Wednesday and the Panthers were dealt
a regulation loss the same night against Atlanta.
The Hurricanes suffered a 2-1 loss in New York after rookie Mats Zuccarello
scored his first NHL goal with 1:51 remaining in overtime for the Rangers.
Eric Staal tied the game with 6:14 left in regulation for the Hurricanes,
while Ward stopped 33 shots.
"It was a competitive game ... both teams played extremely hard," Staal said.
For Carolina, it marked the club's fifth straight game with a point. The
setback did drop the Hurricanes to 10-8-4 as the visiting team this season.
The Hurricanes played their fourth straight game on Wednesday without forward
Jussi Jokinen (upper body) and defenseman Joni Pitkanen (lower body). Both
players are questionable again for tonight's tilt.
Florida, meanwhile, has lost three of four on home ice and was handed a 3-2
loss by the visiting Thrashers on Wednesday. Rich Peverley scored a pair of
goals and Ondrej Pavelec stopped 33 shots in Atlanta's victory.
Stephen Weiss and Chris Higgins tallied for the Panthers, who had a two-game
win streak halted. Tomas Vokoun started but was pulled after yielding three
goals on 15 shots. Clemmensen shut the door over the final 32 minutes, making
It's uncertain if the regular starter Vokoun or backup Clemmensen will get the
start tonight. The Panthers are also playing tomorrow night when they visit
the Washington Capitals.
The game also featured a bit of controversy as the Panthers appeared to have
tied the game at 3-3 when Bryan McCabe's shot with 6:22 left in the third
period somehow got through Pavelec and settled in the mesh behind the left
Despite mild protests from Florida skaters, the goal was not reviewed.
"It looks like a goal to me. I'm baffled as to why the referees, who need to
make certain, didn't go on to the penalty box to ask to take a look at it,"
said Panthers head coach Peter DeBoer. "They looked at everything else. I got
no explanation from them other than they said if it was close, Toronto would
have buzzed them and they never got a buzz."
The loss dropped the Panthers to 8-7-2 as the home club this year.
01/07 11:05:36 ET