NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, December 26th (All times eastern)
Carolina Hurricanes (16-14-5) at Atlanta Thrashers (12-18-4), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Atlanta Thrashers will try to post back-to-back victories for the first time in over a month when they host the Carolina Hurricanes in tonight's Southeast Division clash at Philips Arena.
The Thrashers have won two of three and are coming off Tuesday's road victory over the New York Islanders. Atlanta hasn't won two in a row since a five-game winning streak from November 2-14. That winning stretch tied a franchise record, but the Thrashers are just 5-11-2 since the streak.
Atlanta notched a 4-2 decision over the Islanders. Bryan Little scored twice, including the go-ahead power-play tally in the third period, to lift Thrashers to the victory at Nassau Coliseum.
Mathieu Schneider and Colby Armstrong also scored for Atlanta, while Ilya Kovalchuk had two assists on a milestone night. Kovalchuk, playing in his 500th game, recorded points 500 and 501 in his career. Johan Hedberg made 23 saves for the Thrashers.
Todd White added an assist in the win to extend his point streak to seven games. The veteran centerman has four goals and five helpers during the run.
Tonight marks the first of two straight at home for Atlanta, which is just 6-9-2 as the host club this season. The Thrashers have lost eight of their last nine tilts at Philips Arena.
The Hurricanes have dropped two of their last three outings as they are 1-2-0 on a four-game road trip that ends tonight. Carolina is 7-6-4 as the visiting team and has lost four of its last five road tests.
Carolina was last in action Tuesday night in Minnesota and the Wild recorded a 3-2 victory as Stephane Veilleux's short-handed tally late in the second period proved to be the game-winner.
The Hurricanes had held a 2-0 lead early in the second period, but Minnesota closed the tilt with three unanswered goals.
Rod Brind'Amour and Ray Whitney logged a goal and assist each while Michael Leighton was beaten for three goals on 23 shots in taking the loss for the Hurricanes.
After tonight's test the 'Canes will return home to begin a three-game stand, starting with Saturday's matchup against Boston.
Atlanta is 2-0 against the Hurricanes this year, as it posted a win at home and on the road. Carolina has still taken six of the last 10 meetings between the clubs and the Hurricanes have won seven of nine at Philips Arena.
12/26 10:55:40 ET