CAROLINA HURRICANES (26-23-7-3, 62 pts.)
NEW JERSEY DEVILS (29-15-12-3, 73 pts.**): Fri., Feb. 23 at 7:00 p.m.
WASHINGTON CAPITALS (30-19-10-1, 71 pts.**): Sat, Feb. 24 at 7:00 p.m.
**THROUGH GAMES PLAYED FEB. 21
The Carolina Hurricanes face off against the New Jersey Devils and the Washington Capitals in a pair of key Eastern Conference matches at the Entertainment and Sports Arena. The Hurricanes knocked off the Atlanta Thrashers on Feb. 21 6-3 to move one point ahead of the Boston Bruins for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, with one game in hand. Carolina trails first-place Washington by nine points in the Southeast Division standings, as the Capitals are unbeaten in their last 10 games. The Hurricanes are 14-7-3-1 in their last 25 games.
Feb. 23ESA10:30 a.m. – 11:30 p.m.
Feb. 24ESA10:30 a.m. – 11:30 p.m.
Feb. 25Iceplex11:15 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.
Feb. 26Iceplex10:45 a.m. – 12:45 p.m.
ON THE AIR:
Television: Friday: HTS/FSN; Saturday: none
Radio: WRBZ-850 AM (Raleigh); WCHL-1360 AM (Chapel Hill); WTRP-620 AM (La Grange, Ga.); WDNC 620-AM (Durham); WDZL 98.3FM (Murfreesboro); WFAY 1230/1450AM (Fayetteville); WSML 1200-AM (Graham); WRMT 1490-AM (Rocky Mount); WGHB 1250-AM (Greenville); WEEB 990-AM (Southern Pines); WMFR 1230-AM (High Point); WMFD 630-AM (Wilmington); WJNC 1240-AM (Jacksonville); WSJS 600-AM (Winston-Salem).
Rookie forward Shane Willis became the third rookie in franchise history to register a hat trick when he found the net three times against the Atlanta Thrashers on Feb. 21. Hurricanes center Rod Brind’Amour (9g, 16a) has 25 points in the last 21 games. Carolina winger Jeff O’Neill has 34 points in his last 33 games (24g, 10a), scoring goals in 18 of those games. Ron Francis has 20 points (5g, 15a) in his last 20 games.
HURRICANES VS. NEW JERSEY NOTES:
The Hurricanes and Devils meet for the third of four times this season. The previous two meetings have both gone to overtime, with the Hurricanes and Devils battling to a 3-3 tie on Oct. 27 in Raleigh, and the Devils winning 3-2 in overtime on Nov. 18 in New Jersey. Last season the Hurricanes and Devils split a four-game regular season series. Sami Kapanen led all scorers in last season’s series scoring two goals and tallying two assists in the four contests. All-time the Hurricanes are 29-34-11-1 overall, 16-13-8 on home ice.
HURRICANES VS. WASHINGTON NOTES:
The Hurricanes and the Capitals face off for the second of five match-ups this season. The two teams have not met head-to-head since Oct. 7 – the Hurricanes’ first game of the 2000-01 season. The game resulted in a 3-3 tie at the Entertainment and Sports Arena. Carolina and Washington will meet three times in a span of just more than two weeks in March (3/15-3/30). The Capitals won last year’s season series 2-1-2 and lead the all-time series 41-24-11, including a 13-18-8 mark away from D.C.
CAROLINA INJURY UPDATE:
Darren Langdon suffered a groin strain at PHX (2/7). He is on the Injured Reserve List.
SCORING LEADERS AND GOALTENDERS**
**through games game played Feb. 21
10 Francis 59123749
92 O’Neill 59301747
23 Gelinas 56182442
24 Kapanen 59142539
1 Irbe 54 2.48 25-20-7.908
31 Moss 10 3.73 1-6-0.857