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River of Dreams

Here was something in my wildest dreams I wasn't sure if I would ever see. The "Carolina Hurricanes", etched right there on the Cup!! This picture was taken by Hyena at the Caniac Carnival on Saturday. At times the wait was reportedly in excess of 3-4 hours to see the Cup and it was easily the highlight for many. But there were several other things to see and do at the hugely popular, annual Caniac Carnival. The Canes had an open practice, an autograph session, rides and activities for the kids, viewing of the Cup and other Trophies, and other tours and goings on. Thousands attended!

Thank you Hyena for allowing me to post your Cup photo here! For those of you interested in seeing game action photos as well as some off ice player photos taken over the years, check out her "EYE Candy" site now included under my listing of links.

There's lots to talk about concerning the weekend. Friday night's game was a bummer as it was a rather listless game played by the Canes. No one seemed to care very much about the game, but the Jackets took it pretty seriously as they were mugging Staal all night and giving him shots to the face whenever he approached their crease. Scott Walker finally had enough, threw his gloves down, and went after a surprised Tollefsen and literally flailed away at him. After the linesmen finally jumped in, both players were still jawing at each other on the way to the penalty box. I'm really suprised that Walker didn't get an instigator penalty the way he went after him. Thanks Scottie for giving us something to cheer about!Â

 (photo from the News and Observer)

Sunday's game sounded much better as Eric Staal had a 4 point game and the Wizard, Ray Whitney scored 2 goals in a 4-2 victory at Washington. Newcomer Tim Gleason logged the most ice time for Canes skaters with over 23 minutes and seemed to do very well for his first game with the team! Maybe this trade won't be so bad afterall?Â

Jason Woolley was released over the weekend and never offered a contract. Ryan Bayda was put on waivers, cleared them, and then sent to Albany. (As I said earlier he was on the edge, and got pushed off of it after the acquisition of Belanger). The word on the street is that Bret Hedican will be ready to play in the season opener on Wednesday, but how effective can he be after not playing at all in the pre-season? One more defenseman may have to be cut depending upon the injury status of several players. If everyone is healthy, could someone be the odd man out, like Babchuk or Hutchinson?  Maybe we will keep everyone? Stay tuned for more details as they come!

Finally, I listened to a nice interview on XM radio with Cory Stillman. Cory sounds like he is really fitting in well locally and is planting roots. He talked about how youth hockey was exploding here and that before too long, someone raised in the Raleigh area would be playing in the NHL. One of the interviewers teased him that he hurt his shoulder by lifting the Cup a few times too often, (after having won it 2 seasons in a row). Most importantly, Stillman said he would probably miss 25-35 games before he's ready to get back on the ice. We miss you Cory!  Â

Billy Joel