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Let it all Hang Out

Coach Peter Laviolette has a few words of advice for the rookies and veterans alike who are trying to impress him during the all important coming days of preseason games.Â

 "My advice would be to let it all hang out and get as comfortable as you can be. Play as hard as you can," Laviolette said. "Because for some guys, it may be the only shot, the only impression that they get to make on the organization. So being nervous probably isn't the easiest way to go about it."

Great advice Coach!  I can't wait to see who let's it all hang out tonight!Â

Tonight the Canes open their exhibition season with a home game against the Nashville Predators. It looks like Cam Ward will at least start the game in goal for the Canes. According to the News and Observer, Brind'amour, Cole, Whitney, Ladd, LaRose, Babchuk, Tverdovsky, and Commodore will join Cam Ward on the ice tonight. The rest of the lineup will be comprised of those fighting for spots. The remaining regular roster players will be getting their chance to play during the other games this weekend, (at Nashville tomorrow night and Columbus Sunday). I'll be there tonight cheering on the boys and taking notes so that I can assist Coach Lavi with his final roster decision making! Me and several thousand other general managers!

In other news, TSN reported that Rutherford is backing off the Jack Johnson trade talk. In other words, no one wants to pony up what the elite defenseman is worth. Things will probably quiet down for now about this situation, (finally), but look for the talk to pick up again if the Canes have trouble with the defensive corps they put on the ice during the early stages of the season. Johnson is a valuable asset to the franchise, an asset Rutherford may feel he needs to utilize somehow this year. We will wait and watch for now.

The Canes will be playing in Nashville Saturday night and Columbus Sunday night. The only way we Caniacs will be able to follow these games is on the radio but that's better than nothing. I'll be listening to Chuck K and with the rest of you.  Go Canes!

     John Cougar Mellancamp