Carolina Hurricanes is an ice hockey team based in Raleigh, North Carolina. The franchise was formed 1971 as the New England Whalers, that played in WHA. The Whalers joined NHL in 1979 as part of NHL-WHA, merger with new name the Hartford Whalers. 1997 team relocated to North Carolina and team’s name was changed as Carolina Hurricanes.
Carolina Hurricanes started to played NHL season 1997-98. They have big problems to found suitable arena first, because planned Raleigh Entertainment & Sports Arena was not ready and team need to play first two seasons at Greensboro – 90 km west of Raleigh. That was disastrous for attendance and reputation of the team. Carolina Hurricanes reached Stanley Cup Finals at season 2001-2002 – they won first final against Detroit Red Wings, but after that Detroit won next four games and takes the Cup.
2005-06 was highlight of the Hurricanes. They finished the regular season with franchise record 112 points and fourth overall in the league. They reached again Stanley Cup Finals and faced Edmonton Oilers. Series went to game 7 and Carolina Hurricanes won that game 3-1 and sealed the Hurricanes’ first and only Stanley Cup championship in franchise history. After Stanley Cup, Carolina Hurricanes were unable to follow up their success. Next 12 seasons (2006 – 18) were terrible and Carolina reached only once to the NHL playoffs during that period. Current situation of the Hurricanes seems quite bright, because they have young and talented team. Season 2018-19 was good sign of that and they reached to the Eastern Conference Finals.
Carolina Hurricanes’ Owners and Staff
Currently, the General Manager of Carolina Hurricanes is Don Waddell. The current head coach Rod Brind’amour was appointed to his position in 2018 – Brind’amour is former player of the Hurricanes. The team is owned by Tom Dundon. Carolina Hurricanes has two minor league affiliates, those being Charlotte Checkers in AHL league and Greenville Swamp Rabbits in ECHL league.
Ron Francis – Played with Whalers and Hurricanes
Ron Francis is true NHL-legend. He is currently 4th place of all-time regular season games played with 1731 games. He also is 5th place of all-time regular season points with 1798 points and 2nd place of all-time regular season assists with 1249 assists. Ron Francis played 16 seasons with same organization – 10 seasons with Hartford Whalers and 6 seasons with Carolina Hurricanes. He also played 8 seasons with Pittsburgh Penguins and his last season with Toronto Maple Leafs (2003-04). Ron Francis won two Stanley Cups with Pittsburgh Penguins. He started his career with Hartford Whalers and played 10 seasons there. After that he went to the Penguins but returned his original organization as a free agent 1998.
Rod Brind’amour – Player and Coach
Rod Brind’amour played 10 seasons with the Hurricanes. He is current head coach of the team. He played 694 games with Senators and made 473 points (174+299). Rod Brind’amour had reputation of being one of the best shutdown centres of the NHL – he won Selke Trophy twice (2005-06 and 2006-07).
Sebastion Aho – Future of the Hurricanes?
Sebastian Aho was drafted 2015 NHL Draft by the Hurricanes (2nd round, 35th overall). He has been much better than many people thought and he is currently thought to be future cornerstone of the franchise. Aho’s ability to see the game has received praise and if he continues to progress he could be one of the future superstars of NHL.