For the next five seasons, Carolina has its man.
When the Hurricanes signed Alexander Semin to a five-year, $35-million extension Monday, they did so knowing the two players had built an undeniable chemistry over the first 30 games of the season. At times in recent years, Staal labored as a variety of players took turns on Carolina's top line.
SOG: 97 | +/-: 19
That "chance" was signing Semin to a one-year free-agent deal last summer. Semin, an elite scoring forward in Washington for six seasons, had fallen out of favor with the Capitals. His points-per-game had declined for three straight seasons. But Carolina quickly proved to be a place where he could thrive again.
"(It's) a good team for me. It's new life," Semin said. "This is a good place to play hockey."
In particular, Semin has built a strong relationship with Muller.