The Hurricanes have played two games so far this season. In each of them, they've held leads of at least three goals. They ended up losing to both the Jets and Canucks in overtime.
Meanwhile, the Oilers practiced Monday, despite it originally being scheduled as an off-day as mandated by the Collective Bargaining Agreement. But, after a 6-2 stinker of a loss to Buffalo on Sunday, the players voted to practice rather than rest, and the CBA-required rest day was moved to Wednesday.
Judging by the noise coming from the Oilers, you'd never know the team won two of its first three games of the season. The Oilers have scored 14 times in three games, but have given up 13 goals.
And while goalie Cam Talbot has given up all 13 of those goals, the man bearing the brunt of the criticism is right winger Benoit Pouliot. Even though he scored in first period of Sunday's game, he was benched after a couple of needless minor penalties. Pouliot has already been assessed six minors in the first three games.
Will Pouliot play Tuesday? His coach, Todd McLellan, has clearly had enough.
"He took three penalties in a 15-minute span in Calgary and he took two (against Buffalo) in about a 12-minute span," said McLellan. "If I'm a penalty killer, I don't want to be out there blocking shots all the time for him for stupid penalties. So he can sit and watch, plain and simple. We have some foundational or fabric things we need to continue to fix as an organization, and stupidity is one of them."
But Pouliot hopes he can use the game to turn the page.
"It's unfortunate," he said of his penalty issues. "I put myself in a bad situation and in a bad position, and I paid for it the last two games. We play tomorrow again, it's good."
On Sunday, the Sabres got six power plays. The Oilers had the man advantage just once -- and that came late in the third when the result was a foregone conclusion.
While unwise penalties plague the Oilers, the Canes have struggled to hold leads. This is a team that had a three-goal lead over Vancouver in the second period -- and lost. It had a three-goal lead over Winnipeg in the third period -- and lost.
"We've scored some goals," coach Bill Peters told the team's website. "Certain guys are doing the right things in order to score, and other guys are a little late to the party in that regard. Now we'll be able to make a couple changes to the lineup to make our team better."
"With a young group it can be tough to stay calm through games like that," Jordan Staal told the team's website. "Including myself, it seemed like everyone was kind of off the page in the third period there."
Expect left winger Phillip Di Giuseppe, right winger Martin Frk and defenseman Jakub Nakladal to all make their season debuts against the Oilers. Nakladal played 27 games with the Flames last season and had been waiting for his immigration paperwork to clear. Frk was claimed on waivers last week from the Detroit Red Wings organization.
Oilers center Connor McDavid was named the NHL's first star of the week Monday. McDavid had three goals and three assists in the Oilers first three games of the season.
The Oilers confirmed Monday that back-up goalie Jonas Gustavsson, who came in for Talbot on Sunday but then had to leave the game with a head injury, won't be available for the Carolina game. The team called up net minder Laurent Brossoit from its AHL affiliate in Stockton, Cal. Brossoit has an 0-5-1 career record and a 3.34. GAA in NHL play.