for this game

Bruins seek to keep Hurricanes winless

Oct 12, 2011 - 3:00 PM
(Sports Network) - The Boston Bruins will try to take out their early-season frustrations on the winless Carolina Hurricanes, as the clubs meet tonight at Raleigh's RBC Center.

The Bruins won their first Stanley Cup title since 1972 last spring, but have lost two out of three tilts (1-2-0) to begin the 2011-12 campaign.

Boston's first three contests were all on home ice, but the B's will begin a two-game road trip tonight. However, after finishing the swing this Saturday in Chicago, the Bruins will return to Beantown for a four-game homestand.

Carolina, meanwhile, is 0-2-1 on the year and has surrendered a total of 13 goals over those three games.

Boston won three out of four against the Hurricanes last year and a takes a three-game series' winning streak into tonight's test. The Bruins have also won three in a row and six of their last seven in Raleigh.

The Bruins were dealt a 1-0 regulation loss in their most recent outing on Monday, as Semyon Varlamov stopped all 30 shots he faced and Milan Hejduk scored the game's only goal.

"We got outworked by a team that was a lot hungrier than we were," said Bruins head coach Claude Julien, who was denied in his bid to record his 300th career victory.

The lone goal began with a clean faceoff win by the Avalanche in the Boston zone. Matt Duchene sent the puck to the point for Jan Hejda, who quickly dished off the boards to Hejduk. The veteran forward then beat Tuukka Rask with a wrister from the middle of the left circle at 7:57.

"I was screened, but I saw the shot going where I thought it was going, but it just deflected off of something and went in," Rask said of the goal.

Bruins No. 1 goaltender Tim Thomas is expected to start tonight's game. The two-time Vezina Trophy winner and last spring's Conn Smythe recipient is 10-8-1 with a 2.65 goals-against average in 19 career games against Carolina.

The Hurricanes visited New Jersey on Monday and were dealt a 4-2 setback by the Devils, as Ilya Kovalchuk scored the go-ahead goal early in the third period for the home club.

"We worked hard," said Hurricanes head coach Paul Maurice. "We're not going to start coaching mistakes because there are too many good things going."

Cam Ward allowed three goals on 25 shots for Carolina and the Hurricanes' regular starter has surrendered a total of eight goals on just 59 shots so far this season.

Ward, who like Thomas is a former Conn Smythe Trophy winner, is 8-10-2 with a 2.82 GAA in 20 career games against Boston.

Tonight marks Carolina's second home test of the year after Tampa Bay spoiled the opener at RBC Center with a 5-1 triumph on Friday. The 'Canes were 22-14-5 in Raleigh last season.

After this evening's test, the Hurricanes will embark on a four-game road trip that kicks off Friday in Buffalo and will also take them to Boston, St. Louis and Winnipeg.