GAME NOTES: Carolina Hurricanes at Buffalo Sabres

Wednesday, 03.22.2006 / 9:54 AM / News
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GAME NOTES: Carolina Hurricanes at Buffalo Sabres


Carolina Hurricanes at Buffalo Sabres

Wednesday, March 22, 7 p.m. (ET)
HSBC Arena, Buffalo, NY

Listen LIVE! ( Wednesday, 7 p.m.)

Hurricanes: 45-17-6 (96 pts.), Southeast Division, 1st place
Sabres: 44-17-5 (93 pts.), Northeast Division, 2nd place

Back-to-Back Games

The Southeast Division-leading Carolina Hurricanes will wrap up their four-game road trip on Wednesday night at Buffalo (7 p.m., FSN South, Hurricanes Radio Network). Carolina scored a 5-1 win at Montreal on Thursday in the first game of the road swing, but fell 4-2 in Saturday's matinee at Boston, and 3-2 to Toronto on Tuesday. The Hurricanes earned six of 10 possible points in their recent five-game road trip with games at Pittsburgh, NY Rangers, Philadelphia and Florida.

Carolina has 14 games remaining in its 82-game regular-season schedule, with all games against Eastern Conference opponents. The Hurricanes' 96 points put them four points behind Ottawa for first place in the conference, 19 points ahead of Tampa Bay for first place in the Southeast Division and four points behind Detroit and Ottawa for the NHL lead through games of March 21.

Hurricanes Current Streaks

  • Center Eric Staal has earned points in each of the last six games (3/10-3/20: 3g, 5a)

Milestone Watch

  • The Carolina Hurricanes eclipsed the previous franchise records for wins in a season (43), home wins in a season (27) and points in a season (93) with their 44th win (27th home win) of 2005-06 on March 14 against the New York Rangers
  • Right wing Justin Williams played his 100th Hurricanes game Tuesday at Toronto
  • Captain Rod Brind'Amour is one goal shy of 100 Hurricanes goals
  • Center Matt Cullen is one goal shy of 100 NHL goals
  • Right wing Justin Williams is four points shy of 200 NHL points

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

Carolina Notes

The Hurricanes currently post a 45-17-6 record, including a 22-6-2 record in 30 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 27-5-1 (55 points). With 96 points in their first 68 games, the Hurricanes now look to improve upon their newly-set franchise record for points in a season. The previous franchise-high for points in a season was 93, set by the 1986-87 squad.

Hurricanes center Eric Staal earned had a goal and an assist on Thursday at Montreal for his 25th multiple-point game of the season. Through games of March 19, Staal ranked third in the league with 89 points and fifth in the NHL with 41 goals. He has notched points in 50 of the Hurricanes' 67 games this season. Through games of March 19, he ranked tied for sixth in the league with 17 power-play goals and tied for 12th with three shorthanded goals.

CAROLINA AT HOME: 27-5-1
CAROLINA ON THE ROAD: 18-12-5
CAROLINA ON THE POWER PLAY: 83-of-451 (18.4%)
CAROLINA SHORTHANDED: 303-of-369 (82.1%)

Injury Report

  • Left wing Erik Cole, fractured vertebra 3/4, out 6-8 weeks, missed 8 games
  • Defenseman Andrew Hutchinson, wrist, surgery 2/1, out two months, missed 16 games
  • Center Josef Vasicek, left knee, surgery 12/5, injured reserve, out 3-4 months, missed 53 games

Hurricanes Practice Schedule

March 22 Wednesday HSBC Arena 11:30 a.m.
March 23 Thursday none
March 24 Friday RecZone 11:00 a.m.
March 25 Saturday RBC Center 10:30 a.m.
March 26 Sunday RBC Center 11:00 a.m.
March 27 Monday RBC Center 10:30 a.m.
March 28 Tuesday RBC Center 11:00 a.m.
March 29 Wednesday RBC Center 10:30 a.m.
March 30 Thursday RecZone 11:00 a.m.
March 31 Friday RBC Center 10:30 a.m.

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

Against the Sabres

Wednesday marks the third of four regular-season meetings between Carolina and Buffalo. The teams first met on Nov. 9 at Buffalo's HSBC Arena, a 5-3 Hurricanes win. Most recently, Carolina scored a 4-3 shootout win at the RBC Center on Feb. 12 in the teams' final game before the Olympic break. The teams will play each other in the regular-season finale at the RBC Center on April 18.

The Sabres won the 2003-04 season series against the Hurricanes 3-1-0-0, holding the Hurricanes to just five goals in the four-game set. Buffalo-area native Kevyn Adams led Carolina in the 2003-04 season series against the Sabres with two points (1g, 1a) while Jochen Hecht paced Buffalo with four points (3g, 1a) in the four-game season series. The Carolina franchise posts a 58-80-18-1 all-time record against the Sabres, going 33-35-11-0 at home and 25-45-7-1 in Buffalo.

Hurricanes vs. Sabres 2005-06 Schedule
Nov. 9 HSBC Arena W, 5-3
Feb. 12 RBC Center 5:00 p.m.
March 22 HSBC Arena 7:00 p.m.
April 18 RBC Center 7:00 p.m.

Nov. 9, 2005
Hurricanes 5, Buffalo 3

The Carolina Hurricanes extended their winning streak to a franchise-best eight games with a 5-3 win at Buffalo's HSBC Arena behind a 41-save performance from goaltender Martin Gerber. Gerber saw 44 Sabres shots on goal, including 22 in the second period, to earn his sixth consecutive win. Carolina winger Erik Cole became the first player in NHL history to take two penalty shots in the same game when he was awarded penalty shots on two separate plays. Cole converted on his first penalty shot and finished the game with a goal and two assists, earning the game's second star. Center Eric Staal earned an assist on Mike Zigomanis' first goal of the season to extended Staal's points streak to nine games (10/20-11/9: 6g, 13a). Ray Whitney got Carolina on the board in the first period Frantisek Kaberle found the net during a second period power play and Justin Williams added an empty-net goal with 32 seconds remaining to seal Carolina's 11th win of the season.

Feb. 12, 2006
Hurricanes 4, Sabres 3 (SO)

The Carolina Hurricanes wrapped up their pre-Olympic break schedule with a 4-3 shootout win against the Buffalo Sabres at the RBC Center. Eric Staal scored the shootout-winning goal as Carolina's sixth shooter and was named first star of the game. Martin Gerber turned away four of the Sabres' six shootout shooters to help secure his 28th win of the season. Defenseman Niclas Wallin started the game's scoring with his third goal of the season near the end of the first period. After Buffalo tied the game 1-1 in the second period, Erik Cole put Carolina ahead 2-1 with his 26th goal of the year. Buffalo scored the game's next two goals before right wing Justin Williams found the net behind Sabres netminder Ryan Miller 5:07 into the third period. The teams played a scoreless overtime that saw the Hurricanes outshoot the Sabres 7-1.

Carolina
GP
G
A
PTS
12 Staal
68
42
48
90
61 Stillman
59
17
47
64
11 Williams
68
24
39
63
26 Cole
60
30
29
59

Goaltenders
GP
GAA
W-L-OT
SV %
29 Gerber
48
2.69
32-11-4
.911
30 Ward
24
3.49
13-5-2
.887


Sabres
GP
G
A
PTS
12 Kotalik
66
24
29
53
61 Afinogenov
61
18
35
53
23 Drury
65
22
30
52
19 Connolly
52
11
33
44

Goaltenders
GP
GAA
W-L-OT
SV %
30 Miller
37
2.47
25-9-2
.917
43 Biron
43
2.87
18-6-3
.906
Carquest

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