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by Staff Writer / Carolina Hurricanes

Hurricanes to split American Hockey League team with the Calgary Flames

RALEIGH, N.C. – Jim Rutherford, President and General Manager of the National Hockey League Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the team has reached an agreement with the Calgary Flames to share their American Hockey League affiliate in Lowell, Mass. Calgary will provide eight skaters and one goaltender for the Lowell Lock Monsters next season.

“This should help create a highly competitive environment in Lowell next season which is critical for the development of our top prospects,” said Hurricanes Vice President and Assistant General Manager Jason Karmanos. “When two teams share an affiliate, the combination of their top prospects usually leads to a stronger team on the ice.”

In 2002-03, three AHL teams were shared by two NHL parent clubs. All three – Hamilton, Springfield and Utah – qualified for the 2003 Calder Cup playoffs. Hamilton was the top team in the AHL during the regular season this year.

“We look forward to a strong relationship with the Calgary Flames next season which should prove to be beneficial for both organizations,” said Rutherford.

Calgary placed their American Hockey League franchise, operated in Saint John, New Brunswick for the past 10 years, in dormancy for the 2003-04 season. Next season will be the third year the Hurricanes have sent their top prospects to play for the Lock Monsters. The coaching staff for the Lock Monsters will remain the same as it was this past season, with Ron Smith as head coach, assisted by Tom Rowe.

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