Dec 5, 2013; Nashville, TN, USA; Carolina Hurricanes center Eric Staal (12) separates Nashville Predators right wing Patric Hornqvist (27) from Hurricanes left wing Jeff Skinner (53) during the third period at Bridgestone Arena. The Hurricanes beat the Predators 5-2. Mandatory Credit: Don McPeak-USA TODAY Sports

Carolina Hurricanes: Game #43 vs. Nashville Predators

The Carolina Hurricanes (17-16-9) will look to extend their three-game winning streak back in Raleigh tonight as they take on the Nashville Predators (18-18-6) at 7 ET. The game will be televised on Fox Sports: Carolinas and broadcasted on the radio at 99.9 FM The Fan.

The Predators and Hurricanes met in early December during Justin Peters‘ hot streak, which helped lead the Canes to a 5-2 win. Jeff Skinner had a hat trick in the game.

Hurricanes Lineup
Jeff Skinner – Jordan Staal – Alexander Semin
Nathan Gerbe – Manny Malhotra – Patrick Dwyer
Tuomo Ruutu – Brett Sutter – Drayson Bowman
Zach Boychuk – xxxx – Radek Dvorak
 
Andrej Sekera – Justin Faulk
Brett Bellemore – Ron Hainsey
John-Michael Liles – Ryan Murphy
 
Justin Peters/Anton Khudobin
Possible Scratches: Riley Nash, Eric Staal, Cam Ward, Jiri Tlusty and Jay Harrison (Injured). Mike Komisarek (Healthy).
 
Predators Lineup
Colin Wilson – Mike Fisher – Patric Hornqvist
Nick Spaling – David Legwand – Craig Smith
Gabriel Bourque – Matt Cullen – Viktor Stalberg
Eric Nystrom – Paul Gaustad – Matt Hendricks
 
Shea Weber – Roman Josi
Kevin Klein – Ryan Ellis
Mattias Ekholm – Seth Jones
 
Marec Mazanec/Carter Hutton
Possible Scratches: Pekka Rinne (Injured)

Hurricanes Outlook: The Hurricanes may have hit a three-win streak last night, but it was done at the expense of captain and center Eric Staal. An official injury was not announced and Kirk Muller did not have an update after the game. Right now, Staal playing is up in the air.

For now, I’ve moved all the centers up the depth chart, but if the Hurricanes are without Staal, it’s more likely a winger shifts over.

However, Anton Khudobin had a great game and if this game wasn’t a back-to-back he would be in net, but because it is, he may get a rest and Peters will get a chance in net again.

The Hurricanes used a three-goal second period and a wide array of scorers to lead them to a win. Doing that again will be important in this game and as the season moves along.

Predators Outlook: When the Hurricanes last played the Predators, the team was doing fine without Pekka Rinne, but it is almost the exact opposite now. The team sits in last in the Central Division and has a 3-4-3 record in its last 10.

Seth Jones has gone from first-pairing defenseman and possible U.S. Olympian to a bottom-pairing defenseman in the last month and a half.

But despite all this, the Hurricanes only have more win than the Predators. Shea Weber is tied for the team-lead in points with David Legwand, but both only have 26 points.

A recap will be posted after the game.

Tags: Carolina Hurricanes Eric Staal

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