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Garth Snow's Islanders are in town tonight for a showdown with the Canes. Yes, the same Garth Snow who turned from goalie/goon to NHL General manager overnight! When I first heard of Garth being appointed Islander GM, I thought it was a joke, but pictures don't lie.

I wonder of Garth has changed his partying ways?
Yep, that's the Islander GM during less stressful times. Actually, the team from Long Island is playing very well and surpassing even the most optimistic of fan expectations. I don't know if it was brain trust Charles Wang's idea or Garth's, but whoever decided that they should give coach Ted Nolan another chance should be given a raise and Christmas bonus! Nolan has basically taken the same bunch of losing underachievers from last year and before, and turned them into a dangerous and winning hockey team. Ted went from being awarded the Jack Adams to being fired in Buffalo and then was seemingly banished from the league. All is forgiven now though as he is high on the early season list of Jack Adam's candidates once again.

The Canes are 0-2 against the Fishsticks so far this year with both games being played on the Island. They should have plenty of incentive to bring their A games tonight. David Tanabe and Frank Kaberle are still injured and are unavailable. Andrew Ladd and Kevyn Adams are still recovering and will not play. Nic Wallin has been practicing but is questionable. The way Hutchinson has been playing, we might want to give Nic more time to heal unless he's 100%. Rod Brind'Amour played like he hadn't missed a beat against the Flyers and should be able to play again tonight. Bret Hedican took a nasty spill during practice yesterday and left the ice, but he's expected to play. The rest of the usual suspects will be on the ice. Justin Williams has a 5 game point streak. The Hurricanes have a 2 game win "streak", and are looking to turn things up a notch so that they can put some distance between themselves and the rest of the pack who are all very close in points and will be clawing at each other for playoff spots later in the season.

Carolina had a "family day" for the team yesterday and children joined their dads on the ice after practice. Later on they enjoyed a buffet lunch and other festivities. I'm sure they appreciated the extra family time since they have to board a jet and fly to Sunrise, Florida right after the game tonight for another back to back against the Panthers. Let's not forget about tonight's game though as this could very well be a playoff foe we are facing tonight. Let's Go Canes!!