A Carolina Hurricanes blog with occasional news about the rest of the NHL.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Canes to start season with one keeper? Cole awaits Habs.

Opening night is less than 48 hours away, and the Hurricanes have their roster finalized. However, they may need to make a couple of call-ups.

Fourth line pivot Chad "Sharpie" LaRose is working his way back from a tweaked knee and may not be available. This means that Trevor Letowski, who seemed destined for a residency in the press box, will possibly by asked to don his new sweater. That won't be a problem.

Backup goaltender Johnny Crackers Grahame missed practice again on Sunday after having a swollen leg on Saturday. Some fluid was drained, but the problem persisted. Still, the team is treating it as a "minor injury", and is playing a waiting game before making the call to Albany. Obviously, that means Michael Leighton. They've got him on speed dial, but it isn't that simple. Unless I'm mistaken, Leighton would have to clear waivers a second time on his way back up from Albany. He'll probably clear the waiver, but you never know. Frankly, I don't like this wait and see business. Obviously Cam's the #1 guy here, but the longer we wait to make the call, the more hurried that call is going to have to be. If it were up to me, I'd go ahead and deactivate Grahame and call Leighton up. I'd have done it yesterday. Actually, I'd have done it before the Grahame injury. But that's just me.

So the Habs are coming to town, which makes Erik Cole salivate. Historically, he's been en fuego against them. Cole has scored 18 points (12/6) in 17 career regular season games against the Canadiens. At home, he has seven points (4/3) in nine such games. Since the lockout, however, he has notched six (4/2) in four games.

In the Bell Centre, Cole is even plus dangereux. In eight regular season games in La Belle Province, Cole has 11 (8/3) points including two hat tricks.

Additionally, Cole scored seven points (4/3) in six playoff games in the 2002 Eastern Conference semifinal. Three of those goals came in the Molson Centre. One of those has got to be considered one of the most heartbreaking goals in Canadiens history.
May 9, 2002. The Miracle at Molson. The Habs were up two games to one and had been up 3-0 in the third period, and 3-1 late into the third. Bates Battaglia got one at 12:43 to make it 3-2. With the goalie pulled and an extra attacker on, Cole muscled the tying goal past José Theodore at 19:19 in a goal mouth scrum.
Nic "the secret weapon" Wallin notched the game winner in overtime, capping an amazing comeback. The series was tied 2-2, but it was the Death Blow for the Habs. Carolina won the next two games easily to win the series.

Cole is in very good shape, played well in the preseason, and is ready to get this season started. There's no better way for him to get off on the right foot than against the Habs.


The Acid Queen said...

If it's an emergency callup, then Leighton can come up without having to clear waivers on the way up or down. But he can only be here two weeks, and I don't believe he can be sent right down and then called right back.

So if we want/need him for more than that two-week emergency callup, then he'll have to pass waivers. But if it's just two weeks, then we're cool.

magnolia_mer said...

Happy Birthday in advance!!


Red And Black Hockey is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Carolina Hurricanes Hockey Club, the National Hockey League or any of its other member clubs. The opinions expressed herein are entirely those of RBH. Any comments made are the opinion of the commenter, and not necessarily that of RBH.
Whenever possible, RBH uses its own photography. Any incidental use of copyrighted material including photography, logos or other brand markings will not interfere with the owner's profits.