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PAST ISSUES
Slow start for Canes

RALEIGH -- The Carolina Hurricanes have a 3-4 record after seven games of this lockout-shortened National Hockey League season. 

The three wins include two against the Buffalo Sabres, on a home-and-home series, and one against the tough Ottawa Senators. 

The four losses have come against the Florida Panthers, Tampa Bay Lightning, the Boston Bruins and the Philadelphia Flyers.

The Canes’ season, at least the first five games, has been one of Jekyll and Hyde tendencies. 

Two early blowouts and then two good performances followed by a tough loss.

Last Friday, the Ottawa Senators caught the Canes’ in a Jekyll mood as  Carolina goalie Dan Ellis made 33 saves against the high-flying Sens. 

Ellis was quick to point out the Canes’ defense was “outstanding” as they controlled the zone. 

Captain Eric Staal echoed that thought as “Ellis’ play took some steam out of Ottawa’s game”. 

At least one Ottawa player, Erik Karlsson last season’s Norris Trophy winner, agreed as the Canes’ simply “played a better game”. 

Eric Staal netted the lone goal on a nice feed from Alexander Semin at the 15:45 mark of the first period.  

Ellis then shutdown the Sens for his 13th career shutout.

The Canes’ then flew to Philadelphia after the game and recieved no brotherly love as the Flyers scored three power play goals and won 5-3 last Saturday night.

Eric Staal leads the team with 6 goals and 3 assists followed by Jeff Skinner with 5 goals.   

Carolina is currently on a five-game road trip that will continue Thursday with a rematch at Ottawa.

The Hurricanes won’t return to PNC Center until a Valentine’s Day showdown vs. Toronto .


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