Canes coach Paul Maurice said one goal against the Dallas Stars tomorrow would be to fill up the television screen.
Confusing? Not really. Maurice said he simply wants his five skaters in the game, whoever they might be, to be moving as one and in proper position.
"Move as five," he said today. "Move as five on the puck, support the puck and make sure we're coming to the puck instead of going away from it.
"One of the first signs of a team that is struggling or you're just not as intense as you'd like them to be, when you're watching it on TV you don't see enough guys in the screen. They're spreading out, the gaps are too big, the D aren't up with the forwards on the rush or defensively they're sagging back too much.
"Move as five. When a team is going well, you can see there's five guys on the screen. That was the main focus (in practice): puck support, moving as five."
Another objective for the Canes is a faster start. For whatever reason — blame the schedule for too many games in compact periods of time, or having too many days between games — the Canes have been slow getting started in recent games.
"We're as rested as we can be," he said. "So the concerns you look for now is how sharp will we be out of the gate. You go back and look at our last bulk of games and we haven't been quick out of the gate as it was, so we like to think we saved some energy and at the same time covered some things."
Everyone was at today's practice at the RecZone and ready to play on the two-game trip. The lines today had Eric Staal centering Tuomo Ruutu and Sergei Samsonov; Brandon Sutter with Jeff Skinner and Erik Cole; Pat Dwyer centering Chad LaRose and Jussi Jokinen; and Ryan Carter with Troy Bodie and Jiri Tlusty. The D pairs are unchanged.