Carolina (19-15-5) at Tampa Bay (10-17-10), 7:30 pm EST
TAMPA, Florida (Ticker) — A coaching change seemingly has
changed the fortunes of the Carolina Hurricanes. The same has
not worked for the Tampa Bay Lightning.
The Hurricanes look for their third consecutive victory
Saturday, when they meet the Lightning in a battle of Southeast
Division rivals that have changed coaches this season.
Since Paul Maurice replaced Peter Laviolette behind Carolina’s
bench for his second stint with the team, the Hurricanes have
posted a 7-4-3 record.
Eric Staal and defenseman Anton Babchuk each netted a power-play
goal and Cam Ward made 30 saves to lead Carolina to a 2-1
triumph over the St. Louis Blues on Friday.
Tuomo Ruutu and Sergei Samsonov both collected two assists for
the Hurricanes, who have won six of their last nine contests.
The Lightning also made a coaching change, replacing Barry
Melrose 16 games into the season after a 5-7-4 start. Interim
coach Rick Tocchet has not enjoyed much success behind the bench
as Tampa Bay is 5-10-6 since he took over.
Captain Vincent Lecavalier netted a pair of goals Thursday, but
the Lightning suffered a 7-4 setback to the Washington Capitals.
Tampa Bay has posted just four wins since November 21.