The Flames are a busy bunch today, and since I've already spilled enough virtual ink for the time being about the Feaster/Weisbrod firing, I'll focus solely on tonight's game here.
The Hurricanes have been pretty average on the road this season while the Flames have been fairly terrible at home, so things could get interesting tonight. The 'Canes are in eighth place in the East despite being 13-13-6 overall and having a -16 goal differential. The Eastern Conference, man.
The 'Canes came back from a 4-1 deficit only to lose in overtime to the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday night. They get a boost tonight with the return of Alex Semin to the lineup. Semin has missed the past 12 games with a concussion, but should play tonight as he has been activated off of injured reserve.
Carolina is missing Joni Pitkanen, Brett Bellemore and Mike Komisarek on defence as well as Drayson Bowman at forward, so they're limping through this road trip at less than 100%, having lost to Vancouver and Edmonton thus far. That's not to say they don't have some dangerous players, however. The Staal brothers, Jeff Skinner and Alex Semin are all player who can easily make the Flames pay for blunders by defencemen or goalies (I'm looking at you, Karri Ramo). Elias Lindholm, who was selected fifth overall in this year's draft right before the Flames chose Sean Monahan, will be a player to watch as well. The 19-year-old rookie has three goals and seven points in 20 games with the 'Canes so far this season.
Another interesting aspect of Carolina's season thus far is the play of goalie Justin Peters. The 27-year-old 'tender was drafted in the second round in 2004, and seems to have made a good impression on his club, as he seems to have taken the reigns from Cam Ward recently. Tonight will be Peters' fourth start in the month of December, and the goalie is 6-8-1 so far this season with a .929 ES SV%.
Here are your projected lines and pairings for tonight's contest:
Curtis Glencross did participate in the pre-game skate but it's unclear as of yet whether he will play tonight or not. Glencross will play.
Nathan Gerbe and Paul Byron are both short players! Huzzah! That's all I've got for you.