Pre-Game Skate: HURRICANES vs. NEW JERSEY
CAROLINA HURRICANES (16-19-6-4, 42 pts.)
NEW JERSEY DEVILS (25-12-3-3, 56 pts.)
Friday, Jan. 17, 2003, 7 p.m. at RBC Center
Saturday, Jan. 18, 2003, 7:30 p.m. at Continental Airlines Arena
Captain Ron Francis will move into a tie with Larry Murphy for third on the NHL’s all-time games-played list (1,615) with his next game played (likely Jan. 17 against New Jersey). Franics passed Raymond Bourque and moved into sole possession of fourth place on the list on Jan. 12 against Colorado. He has 18 points (7g, 11a) in his last 23 games and ranks second among Hurricanes scorers with 15 goals and third on the team with 16 assists and 31 points.
|Jan. 17||Friday||RBC Center||10:30 a.m.|
|Jan. 18||Saturday||Continental Airlines Arena||11:30 a.m.|
|Jan. 19||Sunday||RBC Center||11 a.m.|
|Jan. 20||Monday||RBC Center||10:30 a.m.|
|Jan. 21||Tuesday||RecZone||11 a.m.|
|Jan. 22||Wednesday||MCI Center||11:30 a.m.|
|Jan. 23||Thursday||RBC Center||11 a.m.|
ON THE AIR
Television: Fox Sports Net (NC & SC on 17th, NC only on 18th)
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)
On Jan. 12 against Colorado, captain Ron Francis moved passed Raymond Bourque and into sole possession of fourth place on the NHL’s all-time games-played list. With his next game played (likely Jan. 17 against New Jersey), Francis will move into a tie with Larry Murphy (1,615) for third… Hurricanes winger Jeff O’Neill has six goals in the last seven games. His four-game goals streak (Jan. 3-8: 5g, 0a) was the longest this season by any Carolina player. O’Neill leads the team with 18 goals and trails only Rod Brind'Amour (36) for the team lead with 35 points… Second-year forward Erik Cole has 17 points (10g, 7a) in the last 26 games and Rod Brind’Amour has eight points (2g, 6a) in the last seven games. Brind’Amour had a four-game points and assists streak (Jan. 7-12: 1g, 4a) snapped against Pittsburgh on Wednesday.
CAROLINA AT HOME: 8-8-5-3
CAROLINA ON THE ROAD: 8-11-1-1
CAROLINA ON THE POWER PLAY: 42-of-252 (16.7%)
CAROLINA SHORTHANDED: 203-of-240 (84.6%)
CAROLINA INJURY UPDATE
Defenseman David Tanabe missed the game vs. Pittsburgh, Jan. 15, with a shoulder injury.
CAROLINA / NEW JERSEY NOTES
The Hurricanes and the Devils meet this weekend for the final two games of their four 2002-03 regular-season contests. The Hurricanes defeated New Jersey 3-1 on Oct. 19 behind a 26-save performance by netminder Kevin Weekes and again in the teams’ second meeting on Oct. 29 when Weekes made 34 saves and earned first-star honors in a 3-1 road win.
The teams have met in the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals each of the last two years, with the Devils defeating the Hurricanes four games to two in 2001 en route to the Eastern Conference championship and the Hurricanes defeating the Devils four games to two on their way to the Eastern Conference title. Bates Battaglia (1g, 2a), Ron Francis (1g, 2a) and Jaroslav Svoboda (0g, 3a) were the leading scorers for Carolina in the 2002 Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series against the Devils, and goaltender Kevin Weekes was 2-0 with a 1.17 goals against average and a .964 save percentage in the series. Patrik Elias (2g, 4a) led all scorers in the series.
The Devils won the 2001-02 regular season series 2-1-1. New Jersey defeated Carolina in both games in Raleigh, topping Carolina 2-1 on Jan. 5 and 3-2 on April 3. Carolina overcame a two-goal third period deficit to earn a 3-3 tie at New Jersey on Jan. 21. The Hurricanes defeated the Devils 4-2 at the Continential Airlines Arena on March 23. The Hurricanes are 32-37-12-1 all-time against the Devils in the regular season, including a 17-15-8-0 record at home and a 16-21-4-1 mark on the road.
On Monday vs. Florida, Devils right wing Michael Rupp made his NHL debut on his birthday, and became the 11th player in the club's history to record a goal in his first NHL contest, and the first since defenseman Josef Boumedienne on Oct. 6, 2001… Devils' center Joe Nieuwendyk enters Friday’s game with 499 career goals: 314 with Calgary, 178 with Dallas, and seven with New Jersey. He is looking to become the 32nd player in NHL history to reach the 500-goal mark.
SCORING LEADERS AND GOALTENDERS