Brian Boucher will get the start in goal and rookie defenseman Justin Faulk will be in the lineup tonight for the Sabres, Canes coach Paul Maurice said.
Faulk, recalled Thursday from the Charlotte Checkers (AHL), will replace Derek Joslin, who will be a healthy scratch.
"Faulk will play and will play some minutes," Maurice said. "We look at him as having a good all-around game. ... When you play as poorly as we have defensively you open up opportunties for a young defenseman to come in and make the same mistakes and at least you know he's going to get better.
"He's certainly a guy who has a future of being a good defenseman here and we haven't been a very good defensive hockey team. I'm not worried about his offense in this game tonight. ... I think he's a smart defensive player and he controls the puck in his corner and he moves it and he's not afraid of being physically involved in the game."
Maurice said he decided to give Cam Ward the night off because, "I don't think that the way we've played up front in the last few games gives our goaltenders a chance to win us a hockey game. I think there's a mental and physical benefit from him not playing in the game tonight and he'll be back and fresh."
Ward has allowed eight goals on 53 shots in the past two games and was lifted in the second period of a 5-3 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers. Boucher is 0-2-1 in his five appearances, with a 3.86 GAA and .864 save percentage. His last start was Oct. 29 against the Flyers, when he gave up five goals on 34 shots.
Maurice also expects him team to be fresher, saying it "did not have a lot in its legs" in the 4-0 loss in Montreal on Wednesday.