JIM RUTHERFORD NAMED EXECUTIVE OF THE YEAR
Carolina Hurricanes President/GM voted NHL’s best by peers in The Sporting News’ poll
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – May 23, 2006
RALEIGH, NC – Carolina Hurricanes President and General Manager Jim Rutherford was today named National Hockey League Executive of the Year in The Sporting News’ annual poll of 41 NHL executives.
In 2005-06, Rutherford completed his 12th NHL season as the Hurricanes’ General Manager, constructing a team that went 52-22-8 during the 82-game regular season. Carolina won the Southeast Division by 20 points over 2004 Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay and entered the Stanley Cup Playoffs with the second seed in the Eastern Conference. The Hurricanes are currently tied 1-1 in their best-of-seven Eastern Conference Finals series against the Buffalo Sabres, with Game 3 scheduleD for Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at HSBC Arena in Buffalo.
Rutherford has stocked the current Hurricanes club with bright young talent through the NHL Entry Draft, free agency and trades, to go along with a base of veteran leadership that includes Rod Brind’Amour, Glen Wesley and Kevyn Adams. During the 2005 free-agent signing period, he signed consistent-scoring veteran forwards Cory Stillman and Ray Whitney. He has a proven history of success in the NHL Entry Draft. Selections like Eric Staal, Erik Cole and Cam Ward help form the core of today’s Carolina Hurricanes, while forward Andrew Ladd and defenseman Jack Johnson will play integral roles in the team’s future. During the past three seasons, Rutherford has added young talent to the Hurricanes’ roster through trades, including forward Justin Williams and defensemen Mike Commodore and Anton Babchuk.
Rutherford, a former NHL goaltender, is the Carolina franchise’s seventh general manager and the first general manager of the Carolina Hurricanes. Under Rutherford, the Hurricanes completed four consecutive winning seasons for the first time in franchise history between 1998 and 2002. The team captured its first Eastern Conference championship in 2002 when the Hurricanes defeated Toronto in the Eastern Conference Finals. Carolina has won the Southeast Division title in three of the last six seasons and established new franchise records for wins and points in a season in 2005-06. Rutherford’s management efforts were recognized in 2002 when The Hockey News named him its Executive of the Year.
For more information on The Sporting News’ annual awards, please visit www.sportingnews.com.
The Hurricanes will host Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals on Sunday (7:30 p.m., OLN, Hurricanes Radio Network). Tickets to all third-round Stanley Cup playoff games at the RBC Center are currently available at the RBC Center box office, all TicketMaster locations, by calling 919-834-4000 or via CarolinaHurricanes.com. For information on Hurricanes season-ticket packages and mini-season ticket plans, please call 1-866-NHL-CANES.
Please visit www.CarolinaHurricanes.com or NHL.com for the latest information regarding the Stanley Cup playoffs.