The Carolina Hurricanes concluded the team’s first season in Raleigh, its third in North Carolina, and its 21st in the NHL with a record of 37-35-10 and a total of 84 points. Carolina finished just one point shy of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. The following is a recap of some highlights of the 1999-2000 season.
Carolina, which captured the Southeast Division title last season with a 34-30-18 record, posted back-to-back plus-.500 seasons for the first time in 11 seasons dating back to the 1985-86 and 1986-87 seasons. The Hurricanes are 71-65-28 (.518) over the past two seasons.
On October 29, 1999, Carolina played its first home game of the season against the New Jersey Devils in the debut of the Entertainment and Sports Arena. The Hurricanes opened the season with nine consecutive road games (4-2-3). Hurricanes forward Andrei Kovalenko scored the first goal in the Entertainment and Sports Arena in a 4-2 loss to the Devils.
Carolina scored its first win at the Entertainment and Sports Arena on November 7, 1999, with a 3-2 victory over the Washington Capitals. Jeff O’Neill scored the game-winner for the Hurricanes.
The Hurricanes’ 84 points this season ranks fourth best all-time for points in a season. The franchise mark is 93 points set in 1986-87.
Carolina’s 37 wins rank fourth all-time in franchise history and the most wins in a season since the 1989-90 season when the team registered a 38-33-9 record good for 85 points.
Head Coach Paul Maurice became the franchise all-time leader in wins (165) and in games coached (398). In five seasons, Maurice owns a 165-178-55 mark and has guided the Hurricanes to the Southeast Division Title in 1998-99. He was named an assistant coach for the 1997 NHL All-Star Game.
In the three seasons in Carolina, the Hurricanes have posted a 104-106-36 mark. Since recording a 33-41-8 record (74 points) in the team’s first season of 1997-98, Carolina has improved by 14 and 12 points on that first Carolina season.
Carolina’s power play ranked ninth in the NHL (17.0%) and scored a total of 58 power play goals. It was a 17-goal increase from the 1998-99 power play total.
The Hurricanes’ penalty killing at home ranked number one in the NHL (90.6%).
By missing the playoffs by one point, Carolina has missed the playoffs by two or less points in two of the last four seasons. In 1996-97, the franchise was two points removed from a playoff position. In dealing with a franchise relocation, a temporary home in Greensboro, and the transition to Raleigh over the past four seasons, Carolina has made one trip to the post-season and missed the playoffs by a total of 12 points combined over the other three seasons.
The Hurricanes finished the final 35 games of the season with a 20-13-2 run. Carolina was 19-13-2 after acquiring Rod Brind’Amour and Jean- Marc Pelletier from the Philadelphia Flyers. The Hurricanes were 7-3-0 in the final 10 games.
Sami Kapanen was selected to the NHL All-Star game, winning the NHL’s Fastest Skater Contest.
Arturs Irbe established franchise records for appearances by a goaltender (75), wins (34), and minutes played (4,345) in a season. He also set a new mark for consecutive starts with 24, starting 66 of the team’s final 70 games. His (2.33) career goals against average ranks first in franchise history.
Carolina finished with 217 goals scored versus 216 goals against. The 217 goals represent a seven-goal increase over last season.
The Hurricanes were the NHL’s least penalized teams with 799 total penalty minutes (9.7 average).
Carolina posted the NHL’s best overtime record with a 4-0-10 mark.
Ron Francis and Paul Coffey became the first teammates in the history of the NHL to eclipse the 1,500 point mark in the same season. Prior to the start of this season, only five players in the history of the NHL had totaled more than 1,500 points. Francis was the sixth player to achieve 1,500 points and Coffey was the eighth. At the end of the season, a total of nine players in NHL history have reached this plateau.
Arturs Irbe was named the NHL Player of the Week on Monday, April 3, 2000, after a 3-1-0 week as the Hurricanes made a playoff push. The week included a 1-0 shutout of Philadelphia on Sunday, April 2, 2000.
The Hurricanes totaled 508,424 fans during its first season in Raleigh, which was an average of 12,400 fans per game. The Hurricanes had one sell-out (18,730) on October 29, 1999 against the New Jersey Devils. Carolina averaged 8,188 fans per game in Greensboro in the 1998-99 season. Carolina’s season ticket base is just over 6,000 tickets.
Carolina was 20-16-5 at the Entertainment and Sports Arena this season. The Hurricanes concluded the year on a three-game winning streak at home and were 6-2-1 in the team’s last nine games at home.
The Hurricanes introduced new season ticket prices on February 2, 2000 that prove to be a $3.00 reduction on the average ticket price from this past season. Tickets in the lower bowl start at $35.00 while tickets in the upper level start at $12.00. There are over 6,200 seats priced at $22.00 dollars or less. In all, about 45% of the seats at the Entertainment and Sports Arena are priced at $30.00 or less.
With the close of the regular season, ticket representatives will be contacting all current season ticket holders in regards to next season. The new price structure means fans will be able to purchase a season ticket for a low as $504.