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GAME NOTES: Carolina Hurricanes at New Jersey Devils

by Staff Writer / Carolina Hurricanes

Carolina Hurricanes at New Jersey Devils

Friday, Feb. 3, 7:30 p.m. (ET)
Continental Airlines Arena - East Rutherford, N.J.

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Hurricanes: 37-11-4 (78 pts.), Southeast Division, 1st place
Devils: 27-20-6 (60 pts.), Atlantic Division, 3rd place

Friday's Game
The Southeast Division-leading Carolina Hurricanes visit New Jersey on Friday (7:30 p.m., FSN South, Hurricanes Radio Network) for the second of four consecutive road games. Following Friday's game, the Hurricanes will travel to Boston for a Sunday afternoon matinee against the Bruins (1:00 p.m., Hurricanes Radio Network).

With an 8-2 win at Montreal on Tuesday night, the Hurricanes completed the month of January with their fifth consecutive win and 14th victory in the last 15 games. Carolina's 13 wins in January were the most of any NHL team in history for the month of January, and tied the NHL record for victories in a single month. The Hurricanes were the sixth team in history to reach the 13-win mark in a month, and Carolina currently ranks first overall in the Eastern Conference and the NHL with 78 points.

Overall, the Hurricanes have a 37-11-4 record, have earned points in 23 of the last 26 games (12/6-1/31: 21-3-2) and hold the largest lead of any NHL division leader. With 78 points in their first 52 games, the Hurricanes have enjoyed their best first-52 games in franchise history, eclipsing the 58-point, 52-game mark recorded by the 1986-87 squad.

The Hurricanes acquired center Doug Weight from the St. Louis Blues in a trade on Monday. Weight will make his Hurricanes debut against New Jersey on Friday night.

Hurricanes Current Streaks

  • The Carolina Hurricanes have won each of their last nine games at the RBC Center (12/31-1/28)
  • The Carolina Hurricanes have won each of their last five games overall (1/21-1/31)
  • Left wing Ray Whitney has points in each of the last five games (1/23-1/31: 1g, 6a)
  • Captain Rod Brind'Amour has points in each of the last four games (1/25-1/31: 2g, 5a)
  • Right wing Justin Williams has assists and points in each of the last three games (1/26-1/31: 1g, 4a)
  • Left wing Erik Cole has points in each of the last three games (1/26-1/31: 4g, 2a)
  • Goaltender Cam Ward has wins in each of his last five games (1/6-1/26)
  • Goaltender Martin Gerber has wins in each of his last three games (1/25-1/31)

Milestone Watch

  • Center Eric Staal reached the 100-point mark with a three-point game at Montreal (1/31)
  • Defenseman Bret Hedican reached the 200-assist mark for his NHL career at Montreal (1/31)
  • Left wing Cory Stillman is two goals shy of 200 for his NHL career

Television: FSN South
Radio: Hurricanes Radio Network - WWMY 102.9 FM (Raleigh - flagship), WYSR 1590 AM (High Point), WMFD 630 AM (Wilmington)

Carolina Notes
Hurricanes center Eric Staal netted a pair of goals and earned an assist at Montreal on Tuesday night for his 19th multi-point game this season. Through games of Feb. 1, Staal ranked fourth in the NHL in scoring with 69 points and tied for fourth in the league in goals with 33. Staal has notched points in 39 of the Hurricanes' 52 games this season. Through games of Feb. 1, he ranked tied for sixth in the league with three shorthanded goals and tied for fourth in the league with 13 power-play goals.

Hurricanes left wing Erik Cole currently ranks second in the NHL in game-winning goals with seven. Cole ranks third among Hurricanes skaters with 50 points (23g, 27a) and has points in 10 of his last 11 games. The Oswego, NY, native equaled his career-high with a four-point game - including his third career hat trick - at Montreal on Jan. 31. The Hurricanes drafted Cole in the third round, 71st overall, in the 1998 NHL Entry Draft. The 27-year-old is in his fourth NHL season and has scored 71 goals, earned 88 assists and accumulated 248 penalty minutes in 265 regular-season games.

CAROLINA ON THE POWER PLAY: 70-of-349 (20.1%)
CAROLINA SHORTHANDED: 234-of-287 (81.5%)

Injury Report

  • Defenseman Andrew Hutchinson, wrist, injured reserve, out two months, missed 0 games
  • Defenseman Oleg Tverdovsky, upper body, missed 2 games
  • Center Matt Cullen, fractured jaw 1/26, out 2-4 weeks, missed 2 games
  • Left wing Cory Stillman, torso injury, day-to-day, missed 7 games
  • Defenseman Mike Commodore, leg contusion, day-to-day, missed 6 games
  • Defenseman Aaron Ward, hernia, surgery 1/11, out 3-6 weeks, missed 10 games
  • Center Josef Vasicek, left knee, surgery 12/5, injured reserve, out 3-4 months, missed 37 games

Hurricanes Practice Schedule
Feb. 3 Friday Continental Airlines Arena 11:30 a.m.
Feb. 4 Saturday Boston University 11:00 a.m.
Feb. 5 Sunday none
Feb. 6 Monday none
Feb. 7 Tuesday RecZone 11:00 a.m.
Feb. 8 Wednesday RecZone 11:00 a.m.
Feb. 9 Thursday St. Pete Times Forum 11:30 a.m.

*All times are local - Times and locations subject to change

Against the Devils
Friday marks the second of four 2005-06 regular-season meetings between Carolina and New Jersey. The two teams last met on Dec. 17 at the RBC Center, a 4-1 Carolina victory. New Jersey and Carolina first faced off this season at the Continental Airlines Arena on Oct. 15, 6-1 Hurricanes win. Matt Cullen (1g, 3a) and Cory Stillman (0g, 4a) lead the Hurricanes in scoring against New Jersey this season. Rod Brind'Amour has netted three goals in two games against the Devils in 2005-06. The Carolina franchise has not posted a season-series win against the Devils since 1990-91 when Hartford went 2-1-0 in the teams' three-game season series. The Hurricanes franchise posts a 36-42-12-1 all-time record against the Devils franchise, including a 19-18-8-0 home mark and a 17-24-4-1 road record.

Carolina posted a 1-3-0-0 record against New Jersey in 2003-04, with the Hurricanes' lone win a 2-1 triumph at Continental Airlines Arena on Jan. 21, 2004. Departed Hurricanes Jeff O'Neill (2g, 0a) and Sean Hill (0g, 2a) led Carolina in the 2003-04 season series against the Devils, each posting two points. Six New Jersey players notched three points in the four-game set with the Hurricanes.

Hurricanes vs. Devils 2005-06 Schedule
Oct. 15 Continental Airlines Arena W, 6-1
Dec. 17 RBC Center W, 4-1
Feb. 3 Continental Airlines Arena 7:30 p.m.
April 11 RBC Center 7:00 p.m.

Oct. 15, 2005
Hurricanes 6, New Jersey 1

Carolina notched six-or-more goals for the second consecutive game in scoring a 6-1 win at New Jersey's Continental Airlines Arena. Captain Rod Brind'Amour found the net twice for his first multi-goal game since March 26, 2002, and his second straight multi-point game (10/12 vs. WSH: 1g, 2a). Radim Vrbata scored his second goal of the season, in his second game of the season when he beat New Jersey netminder Martin Brodeur 5:32 into the game for Carolina's first goal. Vrbata's marker came with just six seconds remaining of a 5-on-3 power play as Colin White and Zach Parise each served minor penalties for New Jersey. Erik Cole and Matt Cullen each scored 15 seconds apart in the game's 17th minute to give the Hurricanes a 3-0 first-period lead. Devils winger Jay Pandolfo made the game 3-1 when he scored 6:18 into the second frame, but Brind'Amour and Josef Vasicek extended Carolina's lead to 5-1 by the end of the period. Brind'Amour added a third-period goal for good measure to seal the win for the Hurricanes. Cam Ward stopped 27 of New Jersey's 28 shots to earn his third win in four starts.

Dec. 17, 2005
Hurricanes 4, New Jersey 1
The Hurricanes used three third period goals to score a 4-1 victory and move to 2-0-0 in the second of four games against New Jersey this season. Captain Rod Brind'Amour used his 10th power-play goal of the season to give Carolina a 1-0 lead 8:58 into the first period. New Jersey rookie Aleksander Suglobov used his first NHL goal/point to tie the game in the second period, but Carolina's own rookie Chad LaRose broke the 1-1 deadlock with his first NHL goal 1:59 into the third period when winger Ray Whitney set him up from behind Martin Brodeur's net. Eric Staal and Erik Cole chipped in insurance goals at 2:18 and 15:17, respectively, but LaRose's goal proved to be the game-winner and helped him earn first-star honors. Cory Stillman earned second-star honors with the primary assists on Brind'Amour's, Staal's and Cole's goals, his third three-assist game of the season. Goaltender Martin Gerber made 22 saves on 23 shots to earn his third consecutive win and help Carolina to move to 12-4-0 at home this season.

12 Staal
11 Williams
26 Cole
17 Brind'Amour

SV %
29 Gerber
30 Ward

14 Gionta
23 Gomez
15 Langenbrunner

SV %
30 Brodeur
40 Clemmensen
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