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Guy Behind the Guy: Home Ice Advantage

Friday, 02.27.2009 / 12:04 PM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Mike Sundheim
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Guy Behind the Guy: Home Ice Advantage
One thing Paul Maurice has stressed repeatedly to the media since his arrival back in Raleigh is just how much of an advantage the RBC Center can be to the Carolina Hurricanes. As someone who has coached both for and against the Hurricanes in Raleigh, Paul is uniquely experienced to comment on just how much of an impact the Caniacs can have on the rest of the season. When he talks about just how loud this building can get, he knows exactly how much Carolina’s fans can help the home team, or intimidate the road team. And he wants his team to use that advantage.

Mike Sundheim
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Last night, we saw that effect. The Sabres came out flying in the first period, but buoyed by an electric, playoff-like atmosphere in the RBC Center, the Hurricanes got stronger as the game went along. No matter how many times you hear athletes – home or away – say that they don’t notice the crowd, don’t believe it. They absolutely notice. And when they hear the roar of an appreciative crowd on a save, a blocked shot or a hit, the players know that the crowd is there and into the game.

After disappointing outcomes in three consecutive sold-out home games earlier this month, the Hurricanes are clearly starting to benefit from their support at home, winning three straight in Raleigh. And, let’s be honest, we have to. The fans have certainly done their part, as the RBC Center has drawn more than 110,000 fans, an average of 18,442 (98.7% of capacity), for the Hurricanes’ last six home games, including four sellouts.

A packed house is one thing. A raucous packed house is another. We go to plenty of buildings where the seats are full, but you can still hear the players’ on-ice chatter from the press box. When the Caniacs get going, the RBC Center is not one of those places. Needless to say, there were times when it was difficult to hear Paul Branecky talking next to me last night, let alone hear Anton Babchuk calling for a pass down on the ice.

With eight of our final 11 games in Raleigh, there is little doubt the Caniacs will have an opportunity to play a big role in the team’s success during the final playoff push.

Media Alerts: Sorry I haven’t been better about keeping up with these lately. The crowded schedule lately has limited my blogging time a bit.

  • Paul Maurice will join David Glenn on 850 The Buzz today at 5:30 p.m.

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 WSH 53 40 9 4 175 120 84
2 FLA 55 32 17 6 153 127 70
3 NYR 55 31 18 6 157 140 68
4 DET 55 28 18 9 138 134 65
5 NYI 53 29 18 6 150 131 64
6 TBL 54 30 20 4 144 130 64
7 BOS 54 29 19 6 159 148 64
8 PIT 54 28 19 7 139 136 63
9 NJD 55 27 21 7 122 123 61
10 CAR 55 24 21 10 131 143 58
11 MTL 56 27 25 4 151 151 58
12 PHI 53 24 20 9 127 138 57
13 OTT 56 25 25 6 157 173 56
14 BUF 56 22 28 6 131 155 50
15 CBJ 56 22 28 6 140 173 50
16 TOR 53 19 25 9 122 149 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Faulk 54 15 19 -13 34
J. Skinner 55 19 12 -3 31
V. Rask 53 12 19 0 31
J. Staal 55 12 19 7 31
K. Versteeg 54 10 21 1 31
E. Staal 55 9 21 1 30
E. Lindholm 55 8 16 -9 24
A. Nestrasil 48 8 12 0 20
J. Nordstrom 44 5 10 2 15
R. Hainsey 55 3 11 -12 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 15 11 7 .909 2.34
E. Lack 9 10 3 .901 2.74
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