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Wild One

The Carolina Hurricanes outlasted the Philadelphia Flyers in a wild, back and forth game that ended in a shoot out Saturday night, 6-5. The game wasn't a technical thing of beauty, but you couldn't ask for a much more exciting game! Most importantly, the team gave it their all and that's all that fans really ask for.

The Hurricanes scored 2 first period goals, one on a Niclas Wallin putback of an Erik Cole shot, and another on a Scott Walker tip in of another Wallin shot. The team scored another 2 goals in the 2nd as Matt Cullen had a puck bounce off of him after it was deflected by a seemingly high Craig Adams stick. There was a review of the goal that seemed to last forever, but eventually the on ice decision to disallow the goal was over-ruled and the weird goal counted. The next Canes goal was scored by Eric Staal on a nice pass from Erik Cole. Staal's release was lightning fast on that shot as he beat Marty Biron like a rented mule. (I always wanted to say that!) In the 3rd period Trevor Letowski scored a goal on yet another tip in, this time on a Bret Hedican blast from the blue line. It was great to see the defensemen finally contribute with a few points in this game.

Of course the Flyers did their share of scoring as well. Joffrey Lupul scored a hat-trick. Daniel Briere and Scott Hartnell had the other 2 goals. After a gut-wrenching overtime where neither team could take advantage of a powerplay opportunity, the game went into a shoot-out, something the Hurricanes haven't won in almost 2 seasons. This time, the hockey gods had other ideas though as all three Hurricanes shooters would score. Matt Cullen and Jeff Hamilton both scored on beautiful shots. The Canes final shooter, Rod Brind'Amour scored on one of the flukiest bounces that you will see! Marty Biron seemed to stop the shot with his glove, but the puck flew high into the air. Biron lost sight of it and it came down on his back and trickled into the goal. Lupul and Richards both scored, but Daniel Briere missed the first attempt for the Flyers.

The game had some tense moments as Cory Stillman took an awkward tumble and had to be helped off the ice. He has a strained left knee and it will be evaluated on his return to Raleigh. I thought that John Grahame had a pretty good game, even though he allowed 5 goals. A couple of those goals were scored on mad scrambles in front of the net. The bodies were flying everywhere. For some reason, Chad LaRose was upset after the game and wanted a few words with Scott Upshall. I'm not sure what all that was about, but cooler heads prevailed.

Andrew Ladd's rehab assignment in Albany seems to be going well. He scored the OT game winner on Friday night and earned first star honors, but last night Albany was shellacked, 8-1 and I don't see Ladd's name on the scoresheet. I'll look more into that later.