The Game of Numbers is an exclusive THW series looking at upcoming milestones around the NHL. Each team will be looked at individually in three parts – individual player milestones, franchise player milestones, and players that rank in the top 100 in NHL history in any big statistical category.
For Carolina, things were supposed to start getting better. Jeff Skinner was a young gun ready to help Eric Staal. Jordan Staal was acquired to add some depth and Cam Ward was designated the starting role with Anton Khudobin stepping in as a strong backup. Instead, Skinner’s had concussion issues, Jordan Staal went down in the preseason, and Ward hasn’t stolen the games the Hurricanes expected.
Individually, however, the players have chased down some career milestones. With the Canes on the fast track to a top-five pick in the upcoming draft, Eric Staal will be the guy to watch for the remainder of the 2014-15 season as he chases down Ron Francis for the franchise lead on the team’s all-time statistical categories.
Carolina Hurricanes’ Individual Milestones
With what will likely be a disappointing season in Carolina, players will do what they can to help grow the team while teaching the young guys what it means to be in the NHL – to be part of a big league team. Along the way, this young team and their veteran players will hit individual milestones in games played, goals, and wins – benchmarks that will act as proof for why they belong in the NHL.
- 800 games played: Jay McClement (764), Ron Hainsey (754)
- 600 games played: Jordan Staal (587)
- 300 games played: Justin Faulk (262)
- 200 games played: Riley Nash (178)
- 100 games played: Ryan Murphy (89), Anton Khudobin (81), Victor Rask (80), Chris Terry (70), Andrej Nestrasil (54)
- 200 goals: Jordan Staal (151)
- 100 goals: Jay McClement (82), John-Michael Liles (81), Nathan Gerbe (55)
- 300 assists: John-Michael Liles (263)
- 200 assists: Jordan Staal (192), Ron Hainsey (177)
- 100 assists: Justin Faulk (85), Nathan Gerbe (76), Jack Hillen (58)
- 100 points: Jack Hillen (71), Elias Lindholm (60), Riley Nash (59)
Carolina Hurricanes’ Franchise Milestones
Since 2003-04, Eric Staal has worn the Hurricanes logo on the front of his jersey. But the franchise has a deeper history – one that includes green jerseys and a leader that played for both Hartford and Carolina. And while Staal hasn’t seen the playoffs since 2008-09, he’s consistently led the Hurricanes in most offensive categories. Still, one man stands ahead of him in the franchise all-time stats – Ron Francis.
- Eric Staal (846) needs 68 games played to pass Glen Wesley (913) for 2nd on the team’s all-time list.
- Eric Staal (312) needs 71 goals to pass Ron Francis (382) for 1st on the team’s all-time list.
- Jeff Skinner (115) needs 5 goals to pass Ray Whitney (119) for 13th on the team’s all-time list.
- Eric Staal (430) needs 364 assists to pass Ron Francis (793) for 1st on the team’s all-time list.
- Eric Staal (742) needs 434 points to pass Ron Francis (1,175) for 1st on the team’s all-time list.
- Eric Staal (104) needs 29 powerplay goals to pass Ron Francis (132) for 1st on the team’s all-time list.
- Jeff Skinner (30) needs 1 powerplay goal to pass Tuomo Ruutu (30) for 16th on the team’s all-time list.
- Eric Staal (47) needs 11 game-winning goals to pass Ron Francis (57) for 1st on the team’s all-time list.
- Jeff Skinner (15) needs 3 game-winning goals to pass Ray Ferraro (17) for 14th on the team’s all-time list.
‘Top 100’ Milestones
While Cam Ward hasn’t been as unbeatable over the past couple of season as he was earlier on in his career, his numbers simply don’t lie. At the age of 30, the former first-round pick has 231 wins in nearly 500 games played with a career goals against average of just under 3.00 in 10 seasons with the Hurricanes. While he may not be considered one of the elite goalies in the NHL, he does rank among the top 100 in NHL history in some of the more important goaltending statistical categories.
- Ward (512) needs 3 games played to pass Frank Brimsek (514) for 60th on the NHL’s all-time list.
- Ward (246) needs 1 win to pass Pete Peeters and George Hainsworth (246) for 49th on the NHL’s all-time list.
- Ward (22) needs 2 shutouts to pass Chris Mason and Ron Hextall (23) for 93rd on the NHL’s all-time list.
More from the ‘Game of Numbers’ series:
Eastern Conference: BOS | BUF | CAR | CLB | DET | FLA | MTL | NJD | NYI | NYR | OTT | PHI | PIT | TBL | TOR | WSH
Western Conference: ANA | ARZ | CAL | CHI | COL | DAL | EDM | LAK | MIN | NSH | SJS | STL | VAN | WPG
NOTE: The ‘Game of Numbers’ series is subject to updates as the 2014-15 season progresses. Individual marks will only appear if the player is within 50 of the specific statistical milestone, while franchise marks only recognize the top 20 in club history.
For more, follow Andrew on Twitter at @AndrewGForbes or his THW column at @Tape2TapeTHW.
Last Updated: July 31, 2015
Andrew is in his 8th year reporting for The Hockey Writers covering the Toronto Maple Leafs. He began his broadcasting with CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada team as well as being part of their coverage of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi. He’s the former play-by-play voice of the London Jr. Knights for Rogers TV and currently hosts the Sticks in the 6ix podcast. You can follow him on Twitter at @AndrewGForbes.