The Carolina Hurricanes (4-2-3) will embark on a short Western Conference tonight when they take on the Minnesota Wild (4-3-3) at 8 p.m. ET. The game will be Eric Staal‘s 700th in the NHL. It will be televised on Sports South and on the radio at 99.9 FM The Fan.Hurricanes Lineup Offense Tlusty – E. Staal – Semin Dvorak – J. Staal – Gerbe Ruutu – Nash – Skinner Bowman – Sutter – Westgarth Defense Faulk – Sekera Komisarek – Hainsey Harrison – Murphy Goalies Ward [Peters] Scratches: Gleason (Could play), Lindholm, Dwyer and Khudobin (IR). Wild Lineup Offense Parise – Koivu – Niederreiter Heatley – Granlund – Pominville Cooke – Brodziak – Fontaine Mitchell – Konopka – Veilleux Defense Suter – Brodin Spurgeon – Scandella Prosser – Stoner Goalies Backstrom [Harding] Scratches: Rupp, Coyle and Ballard (IR).
The Wild have a lethal offense on the first two lines with Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu and Jason Pominville, but from there things start to dry up. Stopping the top six will be crucial for the Canes, while Carolina’s third line will have to win its matchup.
Minnesota’ goalie has not been named yet, but both Backstrom and Harding are good goalies that will challenge the Canes shooters.
The Hurricanes have been on their longest rest of the early season, after fighting through a busy schedule in the first two weeks of the season. The time off has given some players time to heal from injuries.
UPDATE: Both players will be out tonight.
Jiri Tlusty scored twice in the game against the Islanders. Last year he showed he scores in bunches, so expect him to have another strong game, which the team will need from the first line, which is starting to get back to its regular form.
A recap will be posted after the game.