Pre-Game Skate: HURRICANES at TORONTO
TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS (27-12-8-3, 65 pts., 1st Northeast Division)
Tuesday, Jan. 27, 7:30 p.m., Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Ont.
The Carolina Hurricanes travel to Toronto on Tuesday to take on the Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. Starting with Tuesday’s game, the Hurricanes play four of their next five games away from Raleigh, venturing on a three-game western road swing after Thursday’s home game against Washington.
Recently acquired winger Justin Williams leads the Hurricanes with 28 points (7g, 21a) this season. Williams notched his first Hurricanes goal in Friday’s game against the NY Islanders. Right wing Jeff O’Neill has 27 points (10g, 17a) while playing in all 50 of Carolina’s games. O’Neill passed Pat Verbeek (192) and took sole possession of fifth on the franchise’s all-time goal-scoring list with his power-play goal against Ottawa on Jan. 20. On Jan. 11, O’Neill passed Verbeek (403) and took sole possession of third place on the franchise’s all-time points list with an assist on Eric Staal’s goal. Forward Josef Vasicek leads the team in goals (13), power-play goals (5) and ranks third with 24 points... Defenseman Sean Hill has assists in five of the last eight games (1/11-1/25: 1g, 6a).
ON THE AIR
Television: no television
Radio: WKIX 102.3 FM (Goldsboro); WKXU 101.1 FM (Raleigh); WDTF 570 AM (Raleigh); WMFD 630 AM (Wilmington); WSJS 600 AM (Winston-Salem); WNMX 106.1 FM (Charlotte)
|Jan. 27||Tuesday||Air Canada Center||11:30 a.m.|
|Jan. 28||Wednesday||RBC Center||11 a.m.|
|Jan. 29||Thursday||RBC Center||10:30 a.m.|
|Jan. 30||Friday||RecZone||11 a.m.|
|Jan. 31||Saturday||Joe Louis Arena||11:30 a.m.|
|Feb. 3||Tuesday||Pepsi Center||11:30 a.m.|
|Feb. 4||Wednesday||Arrowhead Pond||11:30 a.m.|
|Feb. 5||Thursday||RecZone||11 a.m.|
While winger Jeff O’Neill’s milestone achievements have dominated his accolades this season, the 27-year-old has recently led an upswing in the Carolina’s offensive production, scoring six goals in the last nine games (1/9-1/25: 6g, 1a). During O’Neill’s hot streak, the Hurricanes have averaged 2.22 goals per game, up from their season average of 1.86.
CAROLINA AT HOME: 10-11-6-1
CAROLINA ON THE ROAD: 6-12-3-1
CAROLINA ON THE POWER PLAY: 25-of-227 (11.0%)
CAROLINA SHORTHANDED: 170-of-207 (82.1%)
CAROLINA INJURY UPDATE
Defenseman Aaron Ward, left wrist, surgery 1/21, out approx. six weeks, missed three games (1/21-1/25)
Center Rod Brind'Amour, strained groin, missed one game (1/25)
CAROLINA / MAPLE LEAFS NOTES
The Hurricanes and the Maple Leafs meet for the second of four match-ups during the 2003-04 season, and the first of three meetings in the next 28 days. Toronto took the teams’ first meeting this season at the RBC Center on Nov. 2 by a 2-1 margin. The teams will meet two more times this season, at the RBC Center on Feb. 19 and at Air Canada Centre on Feb. 23.
The Hurricanes went winless against Toronto in 2002-03, earning one point (0-3-1-0). Josef Vasicek led all Hurricanes in scoring against Toronto last season with five points (2g, 3a) in four games. The Hurricanes are 34-25-11-0 all-time against the Leafs, including an 18-12-6-0 home mark and a 16-13-5-0 record in Toronto.
2003-04 SCORING LEADERS AND GOALTENDERS