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Canes Stocking up on Sutters

Friday, 07.15.2011 / 10:48 AM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Canes Stocking up on Sutters

It would seem as though the race is on between two famous hockey families in the Hurricanes organization.

Paul Branecky
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The team’s seventh-round selection of forward Brody Sutter in this summer’s draft gives it the rights to three Sutters, with cousins Brandon and Brett already in the fold. All three are the sons of former NHL players, with the previous generation of the family featuring six brothers who spent significant time in the league.

Brody’s addition to Team Sutter breaks an internal deadlock with Team Staal, which boasts two players in brothers Eric and Jared.

“Once we got two Staals, I guess they figured we needed three Sutters,” said a chuckling Brandon Sutter.

While Brandon Sutter and Eric Staal are clearly established in core leadership roles in the current Hurricanes team, their still-developing relatives are still working towards that goal. In the case of the Sutters, a scenario in which the similarly-named trio play on the same team could cause some significant headaches.

“It would be a nightmare for Chuck Kaiton,” said Brandon.

“I’m not sure what they’d do with the nameplates,” said Brody.

The Canes’ addition of Brody, who was in town to attend the teams’ conditioning camp this week, came as something of a surprise to the Sutter family. Brody, 19, was one round away from making it through his second year of draft eligibility with no takers. He did attend the Buffalo Sabres’ development camp and the Florida Panthers’ main training camp last summer, but neither team offered him a contract.

That made his eventual selection even sweeter, particularly when his family discovered his new destination.

“I was really excited,” said Brody. “(Brandon, Brett and I) grew up playing street hockey together in the summer and would all pretend to be on the same line.”

“It was pretty funny,” said Brandon. “After the draft my mom called and asked me if I had heard about Brody. I was excited and asking where he went, and when she told me Carolina I just started laughing.”

At 6-foot-4 and 190 pounds, Brody is the most imposing physical presence of the three cousins. That alone was probably enough for teams to give him a look last season, but his greatly increased scoring totals – he notched 42 points (18g, 24a) in 46 games for the Western Hockey League’s Lethbridge Hurricanes last season, up from 14 points in 72 contests the season prior – indicate he has skills to match his size.

“Because I had a good year and I’m a big guy, I thought someone might want to take a chance on me,” said Brody of his expectations going into this year’s draft. “Last year I got an opportunity to play an offensive role with good players instead of being slapped on the third line, so that helped.

“I don’t think it’s bad that I got picked up in the second year, because I ended up in a better situation.”

Brody Sutter will continue to develop in Lethbridge next season, meaning that the three cousins will likely start on different teams once again. Brett, a 24-year-old restricted free agent, is expected to sign another two-way deal with the Hurricanes this summer that will likely see him begin the year with the American Hockey League’s Charlotte Checkers.

However, with some hard work and a little luck, the three could eventually be reunited, much as they were as kids growing up in Alberta.

“Hopefully we get to the point where we can all play together,” said Brandon. “For now, we’ll wait for that to happen and worry about the nicknames later.”


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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Skinner 82 28 23 -2 51
V. Rask 80 21 27 -6 48
J. Staal 82 20 28 6 48
E. Lindholm 82 11 28 -23 39
J. Faulk 64 16 21 -22 37
J. Nordstrom 71 10 14 1 24
A. Nestrasil 55 9 14 4 23
R. Nash 64 9 13 -5 22
N. Hanifin 79 4 18 -14 22
J. Slavin 63 2 18 1 20
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 23 17 10 .909 2.41
E. Lack 12 14 6 .901 2.81