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Penguins vs. Hurricanes, Game 23: Lines, Notes & How to Watch

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Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Carolina Hurricanes

After more than a quarter of the season gone by, the Pittsburgh Penguins (11-8-3) will finally face one of the leaders in the Metro Division when they host the Carolina Hurricanes (11-6-5) Tuesday at PPG Paints Arena. Coach Mike Sullivan may tweak the Penguins’ lineup, as it appears he will move Kasperi Kapanen from the press box to the third line.

There be just a little bit of intrigue regarding Sullivan’s changes unveiled at practice on Monday.

The Penguins five-game win streak ended with a thud on Saturday as the Toronto Maple Leafs outclassed the Penguins, 4-1, at PPG Paints Arena. Things didn’t start well when Mitch Marner scored on a breakaway on the first shift, and Sidney Crosby had to leave the ice with presumed skate issues.

Crosby smiled as he dodged questions about his anger on the bench following the goal.

At the Penguins’ practice, Sullivan reinstalled Kasperi Kapanen on the third line with Jeff Carter and Brock McGinn. Kapanen skated in place of Danton Heinen. The Penguins’ power play also underwent changes after a couple of games with Jeff Petry on the top unit with Kris Letang, the Penguins abandoned the experiment, but Sullivan kept the door open for a few more changes.

The Penguins’ penalty kill will not undergo any changes. The group has surged to 8th best in the NHL since Teddy Blueger returned, including a perfect 17-for-17 run.

Carolina has played three overtime games in their last six and lost all three. Carolina has just one win in their last six games and has fallen to third place in the Metro (27 points) behind the New Jersey Devils (38) and New York Islanders (30). The Penguins are fourth with 25 points.

In fact, a regulation win by the Penguins would put them in sole possession of third in the Metro.

Antti Raanta will likely start for the Hurricanes. He is 4-2-2 with a subpar .901 save percentage. Tristan Jarry, who has stopped 94 of his last 96 shots, is the likely starter for the Penguins. Jarry’s save percentage has jumped back to .914 after bottoming at .900 just a couple of weeks ago.

Expected Pittsburgh Penguins Lines:

Guentzel-Crosby-Rakell

Zucker-Malkin-Rust

McGinn-Carter-Kapanen

Poehling-Blueger-Archibald

Defense:

Pettersson-Letang

Joseph-Petry

Dumoulin-Rutta

Goalie:

Jarry

Expected Hurricanes Lines, per Puckpedia.com:

Jarvis-Aho-Necas

Svechnikov-Kotkaniemi-Noeson

Martinook-Staal-Fast

Drury-Statsny-Stepan

Defense:

Slavin-Burns

Skjei-Pesce

de Haan-Chattfield

Goalie:

Antti Raanta

Special Teams

Penguins Power Play: 12-72, 16.7%, 27th

Penguins Penalty Kill: 13-70, 81.4%, 8th

Hurricanes Power Play: 14-83, 16.9%, 26th

Hurricanes Penalty Kill: 16-78, 79.5%, 15th

Pittsburgh Penguins Game Notes:

Sidney Crosby scored a goal in all three games against Carolina last season and had four points.

Overall, the Penguins are 12-5-2 in their last 19 games against the Hurricanes, dating back to Jan. 17, 2016.

The Penguins have points in eight of their last 10 games (7-2-1). Only New Jersey (18), St. Louis Blues (16), and Toronto (16) have picked up more points than Pittsburgh (15) in those 10 games.

Playing defense? Only Carolina’s Jacob Slavin (36) has more takeaways than Evgeni Malkin’s 29.

Jeff Carter ranks sixth in the NHL with a 60.9% faceoff winning percentage.

Sidney Crosby is seventh in NHL, scoring with 29 points. He is tied for the NHL lead with 24 even-strength points (Erik Karlsson, Jason Robertson).

How to Watch:

TV: AT&T SportsNet

Radio 105.9 The X

Penguins Bets:

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The Penguins are still a tough read, so bet small and only what you can afford to lose. We like them to vent their frustrations from the Toronto game and put a hurt on Carolina. Our bet is the Puckline, but Under 6.5.

Pittsburgh Hockey Now Editor-in-Chief, formerly 93.7 The Fan, Sportsnet Hockey Tonight, NHL Home Ice. Catch Dan tweeting @theDanKingerski and the official @pghhockeynow account.