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Hurricanes eyeing third straight win vs. Lightning

Carolina (19-15-5) at Tampa Bay (10-17-10), 7:30 pm EST

TAMPA, Florida (Ticker) -- A coaching change seemingly has

changed the fortunes of the Carolina Hurricanes. The same has

not worked for the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The Hurricanes look for their third consecutive victory

Saturday, when they meet the Lightning in a battle of Southeast

Division rivals that have changed coaches this season.

Since Paul Maurice replaced Peter Laviolette behind Carolina's

bench for his second stint with the team, the Hurricanes have

posted a 7-4-3 record.

Eric Staal and defenseman Anton Babchuk each netted a power-play

goal and Cam Ward made 30 saves to lead Carolina to a 2-1

triumph over the St. Louis Blues on Friday.

Tuomo Ruutu and Sergei Samsonov both collected two assists for

the Hurricanes, who have won six of their last nine contests.

The Lightning also made a coaching change, replacing Barry

Melrose 16 games into the season after a 5-7-4 start. Interim

coach Rick Tocchet has not enjoyed much success behind the bench

as Tampa Bay is 5-10-6 since he took over.

Captain Vincent Lecavalier netted a pair of goals Thursday, but

the Lightning suffered a 7-4 setback to the Washington Capitals.

Tampa Bay has posted just four wins since November 21.


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