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Walking on a Thin Line - Canes Final Push for Playoffs Starts Tonight

The New York Rangers are in town to take on the Carolina Hurricanes for the first time since the New Yorkers bloodied and battered the Canes during the game in Madison Square Garden the day after Christmas. While many Caniacs would love to see some payback put on Colton Orr and Sean Avery for injuring Carolina's Matt Cullen and Andrew Ladd in that contest, the team would be better off to put retribution on the backburner and concentrate on doing whatever was necessary to win the game. But if a few Rangers got knocked around in the process? So be it!

The Hurricanes will definitely need to bring their physical game with them tonight because the Rangers took control of the previous affair after they started to get more physical. I look for Wade Brookbank to make an early appearance just to let the Rangers know he is there and maybe he'll invite Sean Avery to dance. We will see if Avery answers the call, or skates away like he usually does.

Luke DeCock reports the lineups as follows:

  • Brind'Amour-Samsonov-Cole

  • Staal-Stillman-Whitney

  • Cullen-Walker-Ladd

  • Letowski-Brookbank-LaRose

  • Kaberle-Wallin

  • Hedican-Gleason

  • Wesley-Commodore

Cam Ward will be in net. Seidenberg and Tanabe are both still nursing injuries while Jeff Hamilton will be a healthy scratch. The Canes are coming off a brutal 6-3 home loss to the New York Islanders where they allowed 3 short-handed goals. Obviously, they need to tighten up their special teams play if they plan to be playing in the post-season this year.

There is no local television for this game tonight, but Center Ice is having a free mid-season preview, so check and see if you can catch the action that way. For the New York point of view or for more information, you can check out this Rangers Blog. Game time at 7.

Huey Lewis