Sunday, January 19, 2014

Game 39 preview: Norfolk Admirals at Charlotte Checkers

Good morning, the Norfolk Admirals are in town for a matchup at Time Warner Cable Arena tonight. The game will be the third in three days for the Checkers, who split a two-game series with the West Division-leading Texas Stars on Friday and Saturday afternoon.

Charlotte has won two of three against the Admirals this season despite being outscored by Norfolk 12-10 overall.

Puck Drop: 5 p.m. ET

TV/Radio info: Video AHL Live / Audio 730 AM Charlotte

Records: Checkers 18-19-1, Admirals 21-13-6

(Updated) Projected Checkers lineup: 

Philippe Cornet-Brett Sutter-Zach Boychuk
Greg Nemisz-Brody Sutter-Aaron Palushaj
Chris Terry-A.J. Jenks-Justin Shugg
Matt Marquardt-Victor Rask-Matthew Pistilli

Michal Jordan-Danny Biega
Mark Flood-Matt Corrente
Rasmus Rissanen-Keegan Lowe

John Muse
Mike Murphy

Healthy scratch: Beau Schmitz

Injured: Brendan Woods (out since Jan. 17 with lower body injury), Sean Dolan (out since Dec. 1 with an upper body injury), Nicolas Blanchard (Out since Jan. 17 with unspecified injury), Jared Staal (out since Jan. 3 with unspecified injury).

Storylines: The Checkers have now won six of their last nine and can, once again, reach .500 on the season with a win tonight. ... Aaron Palushaj has been Charlotte's hottest scorer as of late, with seven points (4g, 3a) in a current four-game point streak and 21 (7g, 14a) in his last 15 overall. He's now tied for 11th overall in the AHL in scoring with 35 points ... Today's game will also conclude a three-in-three set for the Admirals, who split a pair of overtime games with the Worcester Sharks on Friday and Saturday. ... Norfolk is now 8-2-1 in its last 11 games and has climbed into sixth place in the Eastern Conference standings. ... The Admirals started rookie goaltender John Gibson in both Friday and Saturday's games, which opens up the possibly that 2011 AHL goaltender of the year Brad Thiessen will get the start. He's 1-1-0 on the season with a 1.94 goals-against average. ... Norfolk's top scorer, Rickard Rakell (10g, 18a) has not played in the past two games. ... Today the Checkers are celebrating Chubby's birthday. Rumor has it that some pretty important people have recorded special messages for Charlotte's mascot. They're scheduled to air throughout the game on the jumbotron.

Darth Vader dropped the ceremonial first puck on Saturday as part of Star Wars Day at Time Warner Cable Arena.