Canes turn in roster; Gleason out with concussion

calexander@newsobserver.comSeptember 30, 2013 

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Tim Gleason skates in a drill during the Carolina Hurricanes training camp practice at the PNC Arena in Raleigh on Sept. 12.

CHRIS SEWARD — cseward@newsobserver.com

— The Carolina Hurricanes, like many NHL teams, turned in their season-opening roster Monday to the league.

But that could be a formality. The Canes don't open the season until Friday, when they host the Detroit Red Wings at PNC Arena, and things could change by then.

"What the roster is today may not be what it for opening night," general manager Jim Rutherford said Monday.

One player who won't be in the lineup is defenseman Tim Gleason. Canes coach Kirk Muller said Monday that Gleason has been sidelined with a concussion suffered in a preseason game last week in Montreal.

The Canes on Monday assigned defenseman Ryan Murphy and forward Chris Terry to the Charlotte Checkers of the AHL. Terry was placed on waivers Sunday but cleared waivers Monday at noon.

But Murphy could be back with the Canes by Friday. It's all a part of the machinations of dealing with the league's new collective bargaining agreement and its salary-cap limitations, and also apparently ties in with Joni Pitkanen's season-ending heel injury.

Pitkanen could be placed on long term injured reserve on Tuesday. That will provide some financial relief and other wiggle room.

"It's complex," Rutherford said.

It's possible, Rutherford said, that the Hurricanes could offer a contract to veteran forward Radek Dvorak, who came to training camp on a professional tryout. Rutherford said there is interest, that the two sides are talking and a decision could be reached Tuesday.

"My feedback is I thought he performed very well," Muller said of Dvorak, 36. "It's a matter of (management) sorting everything out to see if there's a fit and a match and we can make it work."

Injuries remain a concern. In the preseason game Sept. 21 in Montreal, Gleason played the first period — engaging the Canadiens' Jarred Tinordi in a fight — but did not return after the opening period. He's out indefinitely.

"We'll go through the protocol and when the time is right we'll get him back in action," Muller said.

Forward Jeff Skinner, who missed the final two preseason games with a lower-body injury, returned to practice Monday. Rutherford said the Canes had their "fingers crossed" that forwards Alexander Semin and Elias Lindholm would be available Friday for the Red Wings.

Lindholm, the Canes' first-round draft pick this season, played in the first preseason game but has since been slowed by a hand injury, as has Semin. Both skated Monday.

"There's still a chance you could see them in action opening night but we need to get them in some practices prior to that," Muller said.

Forward Tuomo Ruutu continues to recover from a lower-body injury. Muller is not sure when Ruutu will return.

The Canes players are eager to drop the puck and play. Enough preseason work; it's time for the real season.

"Now it's about putting it together and performing," Canes captain Eric Staal said.

Alexander: 919-829-8945; Twitter: @ice_chip

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