With forward Patrick Dwyer still not cleared for contact, the Canes have recalled center Brett Sutter from the Charlotte Checkers (AHL).
"He's hard-nosed and it goes with the message we're trying to preach right now," Canes coach Kirk Muller said. "We need to have that tenacious mentality a little bit more, a little harder on the puck and harder with the puck. We've got two opponents that play a hard game and I think it will be a good challenge for him and a good opportunity to come in and be the type of player that we need right now."
The Canes face the Buffalo Sabres and Nashville Predators in a back-to-back set -- the Sabres tomorrow at the RBC Center, the Preds in Nashville on Saturday.
Sutter, the cousin of Brandon Sutter, has played eight games for the Canes this season -- four in October and four in November -- and has no goals and three assists. His last game was against Ottawa on Nov. 27, just before Muller was named coach.
Dwyer and Jeff Skinner again were wearing yellow, no-contact jerseys at today's practice at the RBC Center. Eric Staal and Jaroslav Spacek, who missed Wednesday's practice, were back on the ice.
Muller had Staal centering Tuomo Ruutu and Jussi Jokinen, moving Jokinen back to a wing.
"We're trying to look at the options," Muller said. "They're three veteran guys and put a little onus on them to lead the charge up there, to produce as a top line.
"(Jokinen) has had some chemistry with 'Staalsy' and 'Ruuts' is playing harder. I think it's important that we establish that type of a line."
Muller had Brandon Sutter with Drayson Bowman and Chad LaRose, with Tim Brent centering Alexei Ponikarovsky and Jiri Tlusty. Dwyer filled in as center with Andreas Nodl and Anthony Stewart.
"Just trying some different options down on the third and fourth line that make sense," Muller said.