The Carolina Hurricanes look to extend their unbeaten streak to four games, while the Washington Capitals try to end a three-game losing skid when the Southeast Division foes meet for the first time this season.
Carolina went winless in its first five games, but has since earned at least one point in six of nine contests.
The Hurricanes, who had a six-game unbeaten streak earlier this season, tied the Tampa Bay Lightning 1-1 at home Sunday to improve to 2-0-1 in their last three.
Marty Murray, who came to the Hurricanes from the Philadelphia Flyers in the offseason, scored his first goal in a Carolina uniform midway through the second period to tie it at 1-1, tipping in a shot from the point by Sean Hill.
“It was a long time coming,” Murray said.
Carolina continued its trend of outshooting teams this season. The Hurricanes outshot the Lightning 39-26, and hold a 441-362 advantage over opponents in their 14 games.
That hasn’t translated into many goals for Carolina, but coach Paul Maurice is pleased with the Hurricanes’ aggressive play.
“We played a very good hockey game, very solid,” Maurice said. “I liked our sharpness and we put pucks to the net.”
Washington began the 2003-04 season with a 6-1 win over the New York Islanders, but then went 0-7-1 in its next eight. The Caps then snapped that skid and won two of their next three, but they’ve since lost three in a row.
Washington losing streak continued Monday, falling 3-2 to the Los Angeles Kings in the second game of its four-game homestand.
The Caps pulled to within 3-2 on Robert Lang’s second goal of the game with 5:48 left, but couldn’t come up with another score as they lost for the 10th time in 12 games.
“I’ve never experienced anything like this before as a pro or an amateur,” Washington goalie Olaf Kolzig said. “This is beyond frustrating, it’s embarrassing. I don’t know what else to say.”
The Hurricanes and Caps meet again in Raleigh on Saturday.
STANDINGS (through Nov. 10): Hurricanes - 13 points, 3rd place, 6 PB, Southeast Division. Capitals - 7 points, 5th place, 12 PB, Southeast Division.
TEAM LEADERS: Hurricanes - Josef Vasicek, 7 goals; Jeff O’Neill, 10 assists; O’Neill and Erik Cole, 11 points; Jesse Boulerice, 31 PIM. Capitals - Lang, 7 goals and 17 points; Sergei Gonchar, 11 assists; Jason Doig, 38 PIM.
SPECIAL TEAMS (through Nov. 10): Hurricanes - Power play: 11.9 percent (7 for 59), 28th in NHL. Penalty killing: 85.2 percent (52 for 61), 8th. Capitals - Power play: 18.1 percent (13 for 72), 8th. Penalty killing: 81.2 percent (56 for 69), 24th.
2002-03 SEASON SERIES: Capitals, 4-1.
LAST MEETING: March 2; Capitals, 2-0. At Washington, Kolzig made 21 saves, and Doig and Dainius Zubrus scored to lead the Caps.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Hurricanes - 1-3-3-0 on the road; Capitals - 2-4-0-0 at home.