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GAME NOTES: Carolina Hurricanes at New York Rangers

by Staff Writer / Carolina Hurricanes

Carolina Hurricanes at New York Rangers

Monday, March 6, 7:00 p.m. (ET)
Madison Square Garden, New York, NY

| Listen LIVE! (7 p.m.)

Hurricanes: 42-14-4 (88 pts.), Southeast Division, 1st place
Rangers: 36-16-8 (80 pts.), Atlantic Division, 1st place

Tonight's Game
The Southeast Division-leading Carolina Hurricanes continue their five-game road trip on Monday against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden (7 p.m., FSN South, Hurricanes Radio Network). Carolina began the road trip at Pittsburgh on Saturday, scoring 7-5 win against the Penguins at Mellon Arena. The Hurricanes will travel to Philadelphia following Monday's game for a Wednesday match up against the Flyers, and will wrap up the road trip with back-to-back games at Florida on Friday and Saturday.

Carolina has 22 games remaining in its 82-game regular-season schedule, with all games against Eastern Conference opponents. The Hurricanes' 88 points put them three points ahead of Ottawa for first place in the conference, 20 points ahead of Tampa Bay for first place in the Southeast Division and one point ahead of Detroit for the NHL lead through games of March 4.

Hurricanes Current Streaks

  • Left wing Erik Cole has earned points in each of the last seven games (2/5-3/4: 7g, 3a)
  • Left wing Cory Stillman has earned assists and points in each of the last seven games (2/5-3/4: 2g, 10a)
  • Center Eric Staal has earned points in each of the last five games (2/10-3/4: 5g, 6a) and scored goals in two straight (3/3-3/4: 3g, 3a)
  • Left wing Ray Whitney has earned points in each of the last five games (2/10-3/4: 2g, 6a)
  • Defenseman Frantisek Kaberle has earned points and assists in each of the last two games (3/3-3/4: 0g, 3a)
  • Defenseman Bret Hedican has earned points and assists in each of the last two games (3/3-3/4: 0g, 3a)
  • Center Kevyn Adams has earned points in each of the last two games (3/3-3/4: 1g, 1a)
  • Right wing Craig Adams has earned points in each of the last two games (3/3-3/4: 1g, 1a)

Milestone Watch

  • The Carolina Hurricanes are one win shy of tying the franchise record for wins in a season (43)
  • The Carolina Hurricanes tied the franchise record for most home wins in a season (26) on March 3 against Florida
  • Left wing Cory Stillman scored his 200th NHL goal on March 4 at Pittsburgh
  • Captain Rod Brind'Amour is three goals shy of 100 Hurricanes goals
  • Center Matt Cullen is three goals shy of 100 NHL goals

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 left wing Erik Cole suffered a compression fracture of the vertebra in his neck in Saturday's game at Pittsburgh when he was boarded from behind by Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik with 5:18 left in the game. Cole was released from UPMC Presbyterian Hospital in Pittsburgh on Sunday and flown back to Raleigh for examination by Dr. Douglas Martini. Prior to the injury, the Oswego, NY, native had established career highs in goals (30), assists (30) and points (60). He currently ranks tied for second on the Hurricanes in scoring, second in goals and leads the team with a plus-20 plus/minus rating.

The Hurricanes currently post a 42-14-4 record, including a 19-4-0 record in 23 games since Dec. 31. Carolina had its franchise-best nine-game home winning streak (12/13-1/28) snapped against Pittsburgh on Feb. 10. That home winning streak is tied for the longest in the NHL this season (Philadelphia, 10/7-11/12) and the Hurricanes currently post the best home record in the league at 26-5-1 (53 points). With 88 points in their first 60 games, the Hurricanes have enjoyed their best first-60 games in franchise history, eclipsing the 68-point, 60-game mark recorded by the 1986-87 squad.

Hurricanes center Eric Staal scored the first goal in Carolina 7-5 win against Pittsburgh and added three assists later in the game for his 23rd multi-point game of the season. Through games of March 4, Staal ranked third in the league with 82 points and tied for second in the NHL with 39 goals. He has notched points in 45 of the Hurricanes' 60 games this season. Through games of March 4, he ranked tied for sixth in the league with 16 power-play goals and tied for eighth with three shorthanded goals.

CAROLINA ON THE POWER PLAY: 78-of-401 (19.4%)
CAROLINA SHORTHANDED: 273-of-332 (82.2%)

Injury Report

  • Left wing Erik Cole, fractured vertebra 3/4, out 6-8 weeks, missed 0 games
  • Defenseman Andrew Hutchinson, wrist, surgery 2/1, out two months, missed 8 games
  • Center Josef Vasicek, left knee, surgery 12/5, injured reserve, out 3-4 months, missed 45 games

Hurricanes Practice Schedule
March 6 Monday Madison Square Garden 11:30 a.m.
March 7 Tuesday SB Flyers Skate Zone 12:00 p.m.
March 8 Wednesday Wachovia Center 11:30 a.m.
March 9 Thursday TBD (Florida)
March 10 Friday BankAtlantic Center 11:30 a.m.
March 11 Saturday BankAtlantic Center 11:30 a.m.
March 12 Sunday none
March 13 Monday RBC Center 11 a.m.
March 14 Tuesday RBC Center 10:30 a.m.
MArch 15 Wednesday RBC Center 11 a.m.

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

Against the Rangers
Monday marks the third of four regular-season meetings between the Hurricanes and Rangers, and the second between the teams at Madison Square Garden. Carolina skated away with a 5-1 win at the RBC Center on Nov. 17 behind Kevyn Adams' first NHL hat trick and Martin Gerber's 28-save performance. The Rangers answered the call two days later, scoring a 4-3 win in New York on Nov. 19.

The teams will round out their four-game season series on March 14 in Raleigh. Erik Cole (2g, 3a) and Rod Brind'Amour (0g, 5a) led Carolina in the 2003-04 season series against the Rangers with five points. Alex Kovalev (2g, 1a), Mark Messier (2g, 1a) and Anson Carter (1g, 2a) paced the Rangers with three points each in the four-game season series. The Carolina franchise posts a 39-44-7-0 all-time record against the Rangers, going 25-16-3-0 at home and 14-28-4-0 at the Garden.

Hurricanes vs. Rangers 2005-06 Schedule
Nov. 17 RBC Center W, 5-1
Nov. 19 Madison Square Garden L, 4-3
March 6 Madison Square Garden 7:00 p.m.
March 14 RBC Center 7:00 p.m.

Nov. 17, 2005
Hurricanes 5, NY Rangers 1

The Hurricanes moved to 8-1-0 at the RBC Center for 2005-06 with a 5-1 win against the New York Rangers. Alternate captain Kevyn Adams took first-star honors as he used the first goal of his first NHL hat trick as the eventual game winner while goaltender Martin Gerber turned in a 28-save performance to earn the win and second star. Right wing Radim Vrbata earned assists on two of Adams' three markers while Justin Williams scored Carolina's second shorthanded goal of the season and earned an assist for his second multi-point night of the season. Eric Staal opened the scoring with a power-play goal with 1:02 remaining in the opening period. The goal was Staal's 13th of the season and 30th point of the year.

Nov. 19, 2005
NY Rangers 4, Hurricanes 3

The New York Rangers handed the Carolina Hurricanes their fourth loss of the season, 4-3 at Madison Square Garden. Jaromir Jagr and Michael Nylander earned three assists each as the Rangers went 3-for-5 on the power play en route to the victory. Hurricanes center Eric Staal scored his 14th goal of the season to even the score 1-1 midway through the first period, but the Rangers scored the next three goals to take a three-goal lead 9:10 into the third period. It was Staal's 100th NHL/Hurricanes game, as well as defenseman Aaron Ward's 500th NHL game. Carolina wingers Niklas Nordgren and Justin Williams each scored in the game's final nine minutes, but the Hurricanes could not get a fourth puck past Rangers netminder Kevin Weekes, who made 28 saves for his fifth win of the season.

12 Staal
26 Cole
61 Stillman

SV %
29 Gerber
30 Ward

68 Jagr
82 Straka
92 Nylander

SV %
30 Lundqvist
80 Weekes
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