It's a New Year and the Canes are trying to put the 2011 part of this season behind them. After a mixed start to 2012, the New Year's Eve loss in Tampa, and losing the lead against the Islanders with a 1:30 left on Tuesday night and ultimately losing in the shootout, the Canes have had a couple of days to work on some of the fundamentals that Coach Muller is looking for from all of them. Notes from Canes practice: Jokinen & Ruutu practiced with Staal on Thursday. Look for Coach Kirk to continue to tweak the lineup.
The Canes take on Buffalo on Friday night at the RBC, then hit the road to Nashville for a Saturday night Western Conference game.
Meanwhile some Canes news and notes:
Jeff Skinner returned to practice in a non contact yellow jersey. He's not ready to return to the lineup quite yet, but it's a good step forward for young Skinner.
Zac Dalpe and Derek Joslin have been assigned to Charlotte; Joslin accepted a conditioning assignment in order to get sent down. Dalpe was the emergency call up for Patrick Dwyer who also returned to practice in non contact yellow, but is not yet ready to return to game action.
Meanwhile, Brett Sutter has been recalled from the Checkers and will be in Friday's lineup vs Buffalo.
Another player note- Joni Pitkanen, still recovering from his concussion, had knee surgery this week; he's expected to have a 4 week recovery time on the surgery.
Meanwhile, much chatter about trades and players who could be on the move all around the league. Chat here in the forums.
Next week's games: vs PHI on 1/10, @ TBL on 1/12 and the Stanley Cup Champion Bruins on Saturday 1/14. Yep, no easy games.
See you at the rink Caniacs!