Pre-Game Skate: HURRICANES at BUFFALO
CAROLINA HURRICANES (15-15-5-3, 38 pts.)
BUFFALO SABRES (8-22-5-2, 23 pts.)
Friday, Jan. 3, 2003, 7 p.m. at HSBC Arena
Carolina coach Paul Maurice coached his 600th career NHL/Hurricanes game against the Rangers on Tuesday. Captain Ron Francis has 15 points (6g, 9a) in his last 16 games. Francis had a six-game point streak broken against the Islanders last Saturday night. With his assist against the Dallas Stars on Dec. 22, Francis became the second player in NHL history to tally 1,200 career assists. Second-year forward Erik Cole has 15 points (9g, 6a) in the last 20 games.
|Jan. 3||Friday||HSBC Arena||11:30 a.m.|
|Jan. 4||Saturday||FleetCenter||11:30 a.m.|
|Jan. 5||Sunday||RecZone||11:45 a.m.|
|Jan. 6||Monday||RecZone||11 a.m.|
|Jan. 6||Tuesday||Phillips Arena||11:30 a.m.|
ON THE AIR
Television: Fox Sports Net (NC & SC)
Radio: WKIX 102.3 FM (Goldsboro); WKXU 101.1 FM (Raleigh); WDTF 570-AM (Raleigh); WMFD 630-AM (Wilmington); WDLZ 98.3-FM (Murfreesboro); WSJS 600-AM (Winston-Salem); WRUP 97.9-FM (New Bern/Morehead City); WSTK 910-AM (Jacksonville); WNMX 106.1 (Charlotte); WCNC 1240-AM (Elizabeth City); WZBO 1260-AM (Edenton)
The Hurricanes completed their eighth of 19 sets of back-to-back games this season when they lost to the New York Islanders on Dec. 28. Carolina is 8-8-0-0 in back-to-back games with a 5-3-0-0 record in the front half and a 3-5-0-0 record in the back half of back-to-back sets. The Hurricanes were 15-16-3 in back-to-back games in 2000-01, with a record of 8-6-3 in the first games and 7-10-0 in the second games. During the 1999-2000 season, Carolina was 14-18-3 in back-to-back games, with an 8-8-2 record in the first games and 6-10-1 record in the second games. During the 1998-99 season, the team played 17 sets of back-to-back games, posting a 7-7-3 record in the first games and a 6-6-5 mark in the second games.
CAROLINA AT HOME: 8-6-5-2
CAROLINA ON THE ROAD: 7-9-0-1
CAROLINA ON THE POWER PLAY: 37-of-219 (16.9%)
CAROLINA SHORTHANDED: 174-of-205 (84.9%)
CAROLINA INJURY UPDATE
Defenseman David Tanabe left the Dec. 31 game vs. NY Rangers with a shoulder injury.
CAROLINA / BUFFALO NOTES
The Carolina Hurricanes and Buffalo Sabres meet tonight in the second of four regular-season matchups. Kevin Weekes made 26 saves to shut out the Sabres in the teams’ first meeting on Nov. 7 at RBC Center. Goals by Jeff O’Neill and Craig Adams lifted the Hurricanes to a 2-0 win. Captain Ron Francis leads all Hurricanes scorers against Buffalo with 108 points in 118 career games against the Sabres. Carolina went 1-1-1-1 (4 points) in four games against Buffalo last season and scored a win and an overtime loss at HSBC Arena in 2001-02. The Hurricanes own a 54-75-18-1 all-time record against the Sabres including a 23-42-7-1 road mark.
The Sabres carry a league-worst 8-22-5-2 (23 points) record into Friday’s game against Carolina. Buffalo suffered an overtime loss on New Year’s Eve after battling the NY Islanders to a 0-0 draw in the game’s first 60 minutes. Rookie netminder Ryan Miller made 25 saves but allowed Jason Blake to score on a backhander 1:36 into the extra session. The Sabres are now 0-2-5 in overtime contests this season. Right wing Miroslav Satan leads Buffalo with 30 points (13g, 17a).
SCORING LEADERS AND GOALTENDERS