Raleigh: Last call before faceoff

     RALEIGH  — Shawn Thornton, who suffered a minor leg injury in the first period of Saturday’s 2-1 loss to the Senators, will skate in the pre-game warmup. 

      According to coach Claude Julien, if Thornton needs the day off, Adam McQuaid will dress as a seventh defenseman, which would slot him in as a reserve backliner today against the Canes or allow Julien to flip one his blueliners, perhaps Matt Hunwick, into a wing spot.

     Tim Thomas, said Julien, will start in net today. 

     ”I think so,” said Julien, ”at least the last time I checked.”

    Thomas was sharp in Saturday’s loss, especially during a first-period power play when the Senators hit him with everything but the team bus.

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     The injured Marc Savard, not on the trip, continues to make good progress from his knee injury. But Julien said he didn’t give any consideration to bringing Savard here and wedging him into the lineup.

    ”He’s ahead of the game,” mused Julien, ”but let’s not push our luck because our luck’s not going very well right now.”