Pittsburgh (14-6-4) at Carolina (12-11-2), 7:00 pm EST
RALEIGH, North Carolina (Ticker) -- Captain Sidney Crosby was
bottled up, checked hard and frustrated in the Pittsburgh
Penguins' last game.
The 21-year-old Crosby will look to take those frustrations out
on the Carolina Hurricanes, who host the Penguins on Thursday.
Crosby had an assist during Wednesday's 3-2 loss to the New York
Rangers, who targeted the NHL's biggest star with their
aggressive and stingy defense.
Colton Orr shadowed Crosby for much of the contest, delivering
multiple checks to the former Hart Trophy winner - including one
that baited Brooks Orpik into a double-minor penalty.
Rangers defenseman Marc Staal, the brother of Crosby's teammate
Jordan, also unleashed a bone--jarring, open-ice hit on Crosby
in the third period to bring the crowd to their feet.
New York also figured out how to stop Crosby, who had six goals
and nine points in the previous three game, in the bonus format
when all three shooters scored before Crosby's attempt.
The Hurricanes will try to do the same to Crosby, who has 13
goals and 22 assists.
The game also marks the return of Paul Maurice, who coached the
Hurricanes -- then Hartford Whalers -- from the 1995-96 season
until midway through 2003-04 when he was replaced by Peter
Laviolette. Maurice was named coach of the Hurricanes on
Wednesday after Laviolette was fired.
In the first contest of its four-game homestand, Carolina
suffered a 4-1 loss to the Anaheim Ducks. Matt Cullen had the
lone goal for the Hurricanes, who have lost four of their last