Training camp begins for Hurricanes

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- Eric Staal and the Carolina Hurricanes are back on the ice.

The Hurricanes opened training camp Saturday convinced they're a better team than they were last season when a home loss in the season finale kept them out of the playoffs.

Carolina was one of the youngest teams in the league last season, and Staal says the Hurricanes would "like to think we're another year stronger, wiser, and that will make us a better hockey club."

Among those skating during a late-morning workout were Finland natives Joni Pitkanen and Jussi Jokinen. Both could have been free agents over the summer but re-signed with Carolina. Jokinen says that's because the "goal is to win the Stanley Cup, and I feel that we have a chance to do that here."