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Joni Pitkanen Still Sore, Questionable for Friday Night

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Joni Pitkanen has not been 100% healthy yet this season. (photo by LTD)

Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Joni Pitkanen missed practice this morning and he may or may not play tomorrow night.  While coach Paul Maurice noted that Pitkanen did not re-injure his knee, he did say that there was still some soreness and the team wanted him to wait another day. (Canes Now)

The Hurricanes highest paid defenseman left the game early on Tuesday night because his leg got cold and stiffened up.  Even though he only played nine minutes and change against the Lightning, he made his presence known as he picked up the primary assist on Carolina's only goal in regulation. 

If he does not play, it looks like Niclas Wallin will move up with Aaron Ward, while Jay Harrison and Andrew Alberts would be the third pairing.  Or Maurice might want to go with seven defensemen, in case Pitkanen can only go part time.

We will try to get more information about this after the morning skate tomorrow.

A couple more quick hits:

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As Hockeymom said, there is plenty of exciting NHL action going on tonight as everyone in the Southeast will be in action besides the Hurricanes and Panthers.  The Capitals and the Rangers will mix it up in a rematch of last year's playoff series.  The Flyers take on the Pens, who are coming off a rude loss against Phoenix last night.  The Blackhawks and Red Wings are mixing it up for the first time this season.  The Thrashers are putting their 1-0 record on the line in St. Louis.  And two winless teams, Tampa Bay and New Jersey, will duke it out in Florida. 

If that is not enough to keep you busy, there are several other games as well.  Don't forget that Center Ice is showcasing a free preview most of this month.   

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You know your favorite team made it to the big time when you see their name mentioned in scandals.  Verizon is in trouble for giving state employees free gifts and meals in return for special consideration regarding installing their computer systems, which are in place in many state and DMV offices.  A few state employees are in trouble as well.  Some of the gifts included free tickets to see the Carolina Hurricanes.  (What is this, Toronto or Montreal?)

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Ryan Bayda reported to his AHL team this week.  One can't help but think that he would be just as happy in the familiar surroundings of Albany.  Nice article here in the Wilkes-Barre Times Tribune.

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Karmanos' Compuware Acquires Gomez for $295 Million in cash.

I must admit, I had to look at that heading twice myself.  Did Peter Karmanos figure out a way to steal Scott Gomez from Montreal?  Nope.  This was just another corporate acquisition, but one of the parties in question happened to have the same last name as the famous hockey player.