The Carolina Hurricanes made a couple of personnel moves Wednesday, assigning forward Zac Dalpe and defenseman Derek Joslin to the Charlotte Checkers of the American Hockey League.
Dalpe, 22, was an emergency call-up from the Checkers when forward Patrick Dwyer was injured Dec. 26 against the New Jersey Devils. Dwyer, who has missed the past four games, returned to practice this week but has not been cleared for contact.
Joslin, 24, has been a healthy scratch for the Hurricanes the past eight games. He is being sent to the Checkers for conditioning purposes, allowing him to get some game action.
Canes forward Jeff Skinner, who continues to recover from a concussion, put in his third consecutive on-ice workout Wednesday and also has not been cleared for contact. He said he has felt strong during the practices but is not yet symptom-free, and is being evaluated each day by a doctor to monitor his improvement.
The Hurricanes (13-21-7) next face the Buffalo Sabres on Friday at the RBC Center. Canes coach Kirk Muller said the team should know after today's practice whether Dwyer will be available for the game or if a player will need to be recalled from the Checkers.
Dalpe had a career-high 19 minutes, 13 seconds in ice time Tuesday as the Canes were beaten 4-3 in a shootout by the New York Islanders. It's possible he could be recalled.
Center Eric Staal and defenseman Jaroslav Spacek did not practice Wednesday but should return today.
Muller juggled his lines against the Islanders, moving winger Andreas Nodl to Staal's line in the second period to replace Jiri Tlusty. Nodl had 15:27 in ice time, his highest since being claimed on waivers Nov. 29 from the Philadelphia Flyers. Tlusty played just three shifts after the first period.
Muller said Tlusty was not injured in the game, but said the lack of playing time was not a matter of the coach sending a message to a specific player.
"I think the message overall is we've got to compete, we've got to compete hard and we've got to win battles," Muller said. "It's consistency that we're after. We've got to be a hard team to play against, with the puck, without the puck. One-on-one battles, everywhere on the rink.
"We can't have any exceptions. That's the way we have to play to get results on a consistent basis."
Note: Checkers forwards Jon Matsumoto and Jerome Samson have been selected to participate in the 2012 AHL All-Star Game, set Jan. 30 in Atlantic City, N.J. They will play for the Western Conference all-stars.
Matsumoto leads the Checkers in points (29) and Samson in goals (14). Samson also represented the Checkers last season in the All-Star Game.