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Peters in net; Ward could return soon

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Justin Peters will start in goal tonight for the Canes, but Cam Ward may soon be able to return, coach Kirk Muller said today.

Muller said Ward, who has a lower-body injury, may be able to return for the game Thursday against the Anaheim Ducks, in the second of six straight home games for the Canes.

"I'm not going to take any chances (with Ward)," Muller said. "We've got a lot of games in March. ... We need to assess (the injury) and stay on it and make sure it doesn't get worse. Before he goes back in the net he needs to be 100 percent and ready to go."

While forward Jiri Tlusty missed today's pregame skate, Muller said he would be in the lineup tonight against the Washington Capitals. Chad LaRose was at today's skate -- replacing Tlusty on Eric Staal's line -- but will not play as he continues to recover from a lower-body injury.

Murphy got the call Sunday night that he was being recalled by Canes. Murphy quickly began the drive from Charlotte to Raleigh, only to encounter an unexpected obstacle.

"It was snowing, in North Carolina," he said today, smiling. "I saw six cars in the ditch on the way. I was slipping a little bit. It was a little taste of home."

But Murphy, a native of Kingston, Ont., easily made it and will be the backup tonight. Murphy has been sidelined by an injury with the Checkers (AHL) and has not played since the end of January, but said he's healthy and ready, if needed.

Murphy was first recalled in early December when Brian Boucher was injured and played in two games on the Canes' trip West. He made his NHL debut against Calgary in relief of Ward, then relieved Ward again against the Winnipeg Jets.

"It was great to get a taste of the NHL, get in there and get a feel for it," Murphy said.

Murphy became a part of NHL history when he became the losing goalie without allowing a goal against the Flames. He was pulled for an extra attacker and the Flames scored an empty-net goal, but the Canes then scored twice to make the empty-net goal the winner and Murphy an historic loser.

Asked if he knew how long he might be with the Canes, Murphy said, "No clue. Day by day. Try to enjoy each day."

 

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Just another...

hurdle to overcome on the way to the playoff's!!! Time for the TEAM to come together and step up!!! My guess is Kirk will have the men ready tonight. When will Joni and Brian be ready???

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About the blogger

A Raleigh native, Chip has worked at the N&O since 1979 and is the Canes beat writer. He can be reached at chip.alexander@newsobserver.com. You can follow him on Twitter at @ice_chip.
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