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NHL Preview from The Sports Network

Saturday, February 10th (All times eastern)

Carolina Hurricanes (28-22-7) at Minnesota Wild (30-22-4), 8 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The Minnesota Wild play the middle portion of a three-game homestand tonight when they welcome the Carolina Hurricanes to Xcel Energy Center.

Minnesota opened up the stand on Thursday as Brent Burns tallied a crucial third-period goal and also added an assist to lift the Wild over the Florida Panthers, 4-2.

Mark Parrish, Todd White and Pavol Demitra also tallied for the Wild, who have won four of their last five games. Branko Radivojevic added three assists and Niklas Backstrom surrendered just two goals on 43 shots for Minnesota.

Demitra now has points in five straight games, posting three goals and four assists in that span.

Minnesota's Brian Rolston missed the contest -- his second straight -- due to the flu. He is questionable for tonight's game.

The win upped the Wild's home mark to 19-5-3 and the club is just one point behind Calgary for the lead in the Northwest Division.

The club pulled off a trade on Thursday, sending forward Pascal Dupuis to the New York Rangers for forward Adam Hall.

Dupuis played in 48 games with the Wild this season, registering 10 goals and three assists for 13 points. Hall played in 49 games with New York, tallying four goals and eight assists.

Carolina, meanwhile, will try to wrap up a three-game road trip perfect tonight.

Ray Whitney had a night to remember on Thursday, notching a natural hat trick in a 1:40 span late in the second period and adding two assists to lead the Hurricanes past the Boston Bruins, 5-2.

Rod Brind'Amour and Justin Williams each tallied a goal and two assists for the Hurricanes, who won their second straight after a four-game losing skid. Cam Ward stopped 34 shots for Carolina.

The win, which was the Hurricanes' fourth in five road tilts, moved their mark away from RBC Center to 14-12-3.

The victory came at a cost for Carolina, as forward Erik Cole suffered a lower-body injury after colliding with Boston's Glen Murray in the second period. Cole stayed on the ice for several minutes, clutching his right hip area, before being helped off the ice by two trainers. He did not return to the game and is questionable for this evening's contest.

The Hurricanes will play their next two games at home and are a mere six points behind Atlanta for the Southeast Division lead.

Carolina also made a roster move on Friday when it acquired forward Josef Vasicek from the Nashville Predators in exchange for forward Eric Belanger.

Carolina will be familiar ground for Vasicek, who played five seasons for the Hurricanes before a July 2006 trade sent him to Nashville. The native of the Czech Republic collected four goals, 13 points and 29 penalty minutes in 38 games this year in the Music City.

Then on Friday, the Hurricanes placed forward Cory Stillman on injured reserve because of a knee injury. He has three goals and 13 assists in 24 games this season and missed the first 31 games of the campaign after undergoing shoulder surgery in the offseason.

To take Stillman's spot on the roster, the Hurricanes recalled 26-year-old forward Ryan Bayda from Albany of the American Hockey League.

Minnesota and Carolina will be meeting for the first time since February of 2004 when the clubs skated to a 3-3 tie. The Hurricanes are 3-1-2 (two ties) all-time against the Wild.

02/10 11:06:24 ET

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