Morning Reading List
Tarik has more about Coach Bruce Boudreau's decision to start Brent Johnson in goal tonight against the Carolina Huricanes at Verizon Center in the hard-copy edition.
Here are cliff notes on the Hurricanes to get you ready for tonight's game.
*Winners in three of their past four contests, the Southeast Division leading Hurricanes are fresh off an overtime win in Toronto on Tuesday.
Carolina is winning despite a plethora of injuries: Justin Williams (torn achilles), Joni Pitkanen (torn shoulder meniscus), Scott Walker (torn hand ligament), Frantisek Kaberle (leg) David Tanabe (concussion) and Brandon Sutter (concussion), but has found success in some unusual places, like the Franken-line combination of Tuomo Ruutu, Chad LaRose and rookie Dwight Helminen. The group combined for six points (each with a goal and assist) and a plus-7 rating against the Leafs. But players like workhorse defenseman Dennis Seidenberg have also stepped up to take the lead with so many key cogs missing.
*Best hope that the Caps and Canes don't make it to overtime tonight, lest allow Carolina's 'secret weapon' Niclas Wallin have another crack at ending a game. No defenseman in the history of the league has scored more playoff overtime goals than Wallin (3), although his winner against the Leafs Tuesday was his first of this young regular season.
*Here's a picture of the Alex Ovechkin bobblehead that the first 15,000 fans will receive on Dec. 18 against St. Louis.
In the system:
*Bears coach Bob Woods said Simeon Varlamov, who has been nursing a groin injury and hasn't played since Oct. 17, will start for Hershey on Friday when they take on the River Rats. Bobby Goepfert has been reassigned to South Carolina. Tyler Sloan, Graham Mink and Dean Arsene are banged up and may not make the trip to Albany.
*Defensive prospect Eric Mestery was traded from the Tri-City Americans to the Lethbridge Hurricanes as part of a five-player trade yesterday. He is still part of the Capitals organization.
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