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Checkers Notes: Murphy, Dalpe Step up for Charlotte

Thursday, 04.21.2011 / 12:11 PM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Checkers Notes: Murphy, Dalpe Step up for Charlotte
Murphy Rounds Back Into Form

Paul Branecky
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As they were out-shot 37-24 on Wednesday, a big reason the Checkers were able to prevail was goaltender Mike Murphy.

The Hurricanes’ sixth-round pick in the 2008 draft that also produced Checkers teammates Zach Boychuk, Zac Dalpe and Michal Jordan, Murphy made 35 saves in just his second appearance of the playoffs. Prior to stopping 20 of 23 shots in Game 3’s loss, he had not played since suffering a concussion on March 20.

“I’ve been out three and a half weeks with an injury, and this is the best feeling in the world,” said Murphy after being named first star in Game 4. “It was a huge game for me to get my confidence back.”

“Murphy has responded well two games in a row after being out for a long period of time,” said Checkers coach Jeff Daniels. “He’s a big-time goalie.”

Daniels added that he had no reservations about starting Murphy in the middle of a tight playoff series after a prolonged injury layoff.

“Not really,” he said. “We had seven good days of practice with him and I liked what I saw in practice, and when I talked to him and asked him if he was ready, he said, ‘Yeah’. He didn’t hesitate and he wanted in the net.”

Murphy, who split the Checkers’ netminding duties evenly with Justin Pogge until his injury, posted a 2.53 goals-against average and .919 save percentage during the regular season.

Dalpe Maintains Offensive Pace

Although it wasn’t quite the trial by fire that Justin Faulk experienced in his professional debut, Dalpe wasn’t far off last season.

After signing a contract with the Hurricanes and the conclusion of his sophomore season at Ohio State, the then-20-year-old Dalpe played just nine regular-season games with the Albany River Rats before embarking on the team’s eight-game playoff run. In total, he scored 14 points (9g, 5a) during that 17-game span.

After a strong regular season in 2010-11 that saw him score at nearly a point-per-game pace and make the American Hockey League’s All-Rookie Team, Dalpe has followed that up with another strong start to his postseason, notching 6 points (3g, 3a) in the first four games against Hershey.

”I love this time of year,” he said after Game 4. “It’s one of those things where if you want to be a big player you need to step up, and I feel like I’m trying to do that every game.”

“The way he can generate a lot of offense with his speed, he’s a guy that even when the puck’s not going in for him personally he’s creating a lot of offense,” said Daniels. “He’s a real good, solid, two-way player for us.”

Dalpe, playing the point on the Checkers’ power play, picked up an assist on Nicolas Blanchard’s goal in the second period. He was initially credited with his team’s second goal as well, but replays showed that Oskar Osala’s shot had trickled over the line by the time Dalpe helped it along.

“I told Oskar that I was just making sure it was over the line,” said Dalpe. “I kind of celebrated like I got it, so that was kind of embarrassing.”

Dalpe, who scored his first 3 NHL goals with the Hurricanes this season, ranks tied for seventh in AHL playoff scoring.


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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 WSH 53 40 9 4 175 120 84
2 FLA 54 32 16 6 150 122 70
3 NYR 54 31 18 5 153 135 67
4 NYI 53 29 18 6 150 131 64
5 DET 54 28 18 8 136 132 64
6 BOS 54 29 19 6 159 148 64
7 TBL 53 29 20 4 140 127 62
8 PIT 53 27 19 7 138 135 61
9 NJD 55 27 21 7 122 123 61
10 MTL 55 27 24 4 147 145 58
11 PHI 53 24 20 9 127 138 57
12 CAR 54 24 21 9 130 142 57
13 OTT 56 25 25 6 157 173 56
14 CBJ 56 22 28 6 140 173 50
15 BUF 55 21 28 6 125 151 48
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 54 19 12 -3 31
V. Rask 52 12 19 0 31
J. Staal 54 12 19 8 31
K. Versteeg 53 10 21 1 31
E. Staal 54 9 21 0 30
E. Lindholm 54 8 16 -9 24
A. Nestrasil 47 7 12 0 19
J. Nordstrom 43 5 9 2 14
R. Hainsey 54 3 11 -11 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 15 11 6 .908 2.38
E. Lack 9 10 3 .901 2.74
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