RALEIGH (July 11, 2001) --
The National Hockey League released the 2001-02 regular season schedule today. The Carolina Hurricanes will open their 2001-02 schedule
against the New York Rangers Friday Oct. 5.
The Hurricanes - Rangers match-up will likely draw a sellout crowd to the Entertainment and Sports Arena’s first of 41 home games. New York is one of a handful of teams that may trade for Pittsburgh Penguins superstar Jaromir Jagr. Carolina fans will also get to see former Hurricanes defenseman Dave Karpa in his first game as a Blueshirt.
The Canes will face the Dallas Stars and former Hurricanes wingman Rob DiMaio on Oct. 7 in the first of eight Sunday home games. The Canes schedule features 17 weekend home games – seven Friday night games, two Saturday night games and the eight aforementioned Sunday games.
Carolina will only face the defending President’s Trophy winner and Stanley Cup champion Colorado Avalanche one time. Newly-signed Carolina left wing Chris Dingman will face his old team Tuesday Oct. 23 at Denver’s Pepsi Center.
Unlike 2000-01, the Hurricanes will play host to the Detroit Red Wings this season, Tuesday Oct. 30. Carolina acquisition Aaron Ward will face off against his former team again Nov. 13 at Detroit’s Joe Louis Arena.
Caniacs will have to wait until Saturday Jan. 5 to welcome the New Jersey Devils and their captain Scott Stevens to the Entertainment and Sports Arena. The defending Eastern Conference champions host Carolina at Continental Airlines Arena on Jan. 19 and March 23. The teams’ four-game regular season series winds up Wednesday April 3 in Raleigh.
Mario Lemieux and the Pittsburgh Penguins will visit Carolina Nov. 6 and Feb. 5 for two Tuesday night matchups. With the Winter Olympics halting the NHL season for two weeks in February the Hurricanes will have just one home game during the shortened month. NHL stars will represent their home countries in Salt Lake City from Feb. 14 – 25.
Following the Olympic break, Carolina resumes its schedule with its longest road trip of the season, a five-game swing that takes them from Toronto to Boston, Montreal, Chicago and Pittsburgh. Despite being the longest road trip of the season, the swing hardly compares to some of the Canes’ tougher trips of 2000-01.
The Hurricanes will face their biggest divisional rivals, the Washington Capitals, five times during the 2001-02 campaign, twice in Raleigh. The rivalry resumes at Washington’s MCI Center Thursday Nov. 8. The Caps visit Raleigh Sunday Dec. 2 following the teams’ second D.C. match-up Nov. 30 for the second game of a home-and-home series. The season series wraps Friday March 8 at the Entertainment and Sports Arena.
If the Hurricanes find themselves in a playoff race again in 2001-02 the schedule may aid their late-season surge. Each team Carolina will face in its final five games of 2001-02 missed the 2001 playoffs. The Hurricanes wrap their campaign with two match-ups against Atlanta April 7 and April 14, Tampa Bay April 10, New York Islanders April 8 and Florida April 12.
The Hurricanes drew just 15 sets of back-to-back games for 2001-02 compared to last season’s 17. In 2000-01 the Hurricanes went 15-16-3 in back-to-back match-ups with an 8-6-3 record in first games and 7-10-0 record in second games of those grueling sets. In 1999-2000 Carolina went 14-18-3 in back-to-back contests.
Carolina Hurricanes Website Reporter Kyle S. Hanlin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.