Eric Staal

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Eric Staal
Eric Staal 2013-2.jpg
Staal with the Carolina Hurricanes in 2013
Born (1984-10-29) October 29, 1984 (age 36)
Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada
Height 6 ft 4 in (193 cm)
Weight 206 lb (93 kg; 14 st 10 lb)
Position Centre
Shoots Left
NHL team
Former teams
Buffalo Sabres
Carolina Hurricanes
New York Rangers
Minnesota Wild
National team  Canada
NHL Draft 2nd overall, 2003
Carolina Hurricanes
Playing career 2003–present

Eric Craig Staal (born October 29, 1984) is a Canadian professional ice hockey center currently playing for the Buffalo Sabres of the National Hockey League (NHL). He has also played for the Carolina Hurricanes, New York Rangers and Minnesota Wild. Eric is the oldest of the Staal brothers, which include former teammates Marc, Jordan, and Jared.

Staal is a member of the Triple Gold Club, having won the Stanley Cup with the Hurricanes in 2006, and both the 2007 World Championships and the 2010 Winter Olympics with Team Canada.

Early life[edit]

Staal was born in Thunder Bay, Ontario, the son of sod farmers Henry and Linda Staal. All four of his grandparents were Dutch immigrants.[1] He started playing hockey at the age of four,[2] and along with learning how to operate farming tools he played in a home ice rink with his three younger brothers.[3] His idols growing up were forwards Joe Sakic and Wayne Gretzky.[4] Staal took his jersey number 12 from what his father wore when he played hockey for the Lakehead Thunderwolves from 1978 to 1983.[4][5]

Playing career[edit]

Staal grew up playing minor hockey in Thunder Bay, and played AAA for the Thunder Bay Kings organization and led his Bantam team to an All-Ontario Championship in the 1999–2000 season. After the season, Staal was selected in the first round, 13th overall, in the 2000 Ontario Hockey League (OHL) Priority Selection by the Peterborough Petes.[6] While not even his father, Henry, thought he may have been ready for the OHL,[7] Staal finished his first season with 49 points in 63 games. His scoring totals increased the following season when he recorded 62 points.

In his draft year, Staal led the Petes in scoring with 39 goals and 98 points. He was named to the Canadian Hockey League (CHL) First All-Star Team as well as the OHL Second All-Star Team.[8] Staal also skated in the CHL Top Prospects Game, recording one assist.[9]

Carolina Hurricanes[edit]

Staal was selected second overall in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft by the Carolina Hurricanes, behind number one pick Marc-André Fleury. He played his first season in the NHL right after being drafted. In 2004, Staal played in the YoungStars Game as part of the 2004 NHL All-Star festivities.[10]

As the 2004–05 season was cancelled due to a lock-out, Staal spent the year with the Hurricanes' American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Lowell Lock Monsters. He established new franchise records in points (77), assists (51), plus-minus (+37) and shorthanded goals (7) in a season, and was also called for the AHL All Star Classic.[4]

Staal with the Hurricanes in 2011.

In the 2005–06 season, Staal scored a career-high 100 points during the regular season, and was named NHL Offensive Player of the Week of October 23–30, 2005, the same week in which he scored his first career hat-trick, coming against the Philadelphia Flyers. He then led the Hurricanes in points during the 2006 Stanley Cup playoffs with 28 as they won the Stanley Cup with the Carolina Hurricanes. After the season, Staal finished fourth in voting for the Hart Memorial Trophy, awarded to the NHL's most valuable player (MVP). Following the successful season, on July 1, 2006, Staal signed a three-year, $13.5 million contract extension with the Hurricanes.[11]

Staal made his first All-Star Game appearance in 2007 All-Star Game in Dallas, where he scored the Eastern Conference's third goal. His overall production dipped from the previous season, as he recorded just 70 points.

On January 27, 2008, at the 2008 NHL All-Star Game in Atlanta, Staal recorded two goals and an assist. He was also awarded the MVP award for the event.[12]

On September 11, 2008, Staal signed a seven-year, $57.75 million extension with the Hurricanes, which was to begin in the 2009–10 season. Staal was slated to become a restricted free agent on July 1, 2009, but signed despite having one year at $5 million remaining on his former contract.[13]

On April 28, 2009, Staal capped an improbable comeback by scoring the series-winning goal with 31.7 seconds remaining in the Game 7 of Carolina's first round series of the 2009 playoffs against the New Jersey Devils.[2][14] The Hurricanes went as far as the Eastern Conference Finals, ultimately losing to the eventually Stanley Cup champions, the Pittsburgh Penguins.

On May 8, 2009, Staal scored twice to earn 40 career post-season points, eclipsing Ron Francis' franchise mark of 39.[citation needed]

Staal in warm-ups for the Hurricanes in 2013.

On January 20, 2010, Staal was named team captain, replacing Rod Brind'Amour, who was named an alternate captain. Staal became the fifth captain since the team relocated to the city of Raleigh, North Carolina, from Hartford.[15]

On January 18, 2011, Staal was named one of two team captains for 2011 NHL All-Star Game, held in the Hurricanes' home city of Raleigh.[16] In the Game, Team Staal fell 10–11 to Team Lidstrom, captained by the Detroit Red Wings' Nicklas Lidström.[17]

New York Rangers[edit]

On February 28, 2016, Staal, in the final year of his contract, was traded to the New York Rangers in exchange for Aleksi Saarela and two second-round draft picks (2016 and 2017).[18][19] Eric joined brother Marc in New York, but struggled for the Rangers, recording six points in 20 regular season games, and zero points in a five-game loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Minnesota Wild[edit]

During the subsequent offseason, Staal as a free agent signed a three-year contract with the Minnesota Wild on July 1, 2016.[20] In his first season with the Wild, Staal recorded 28 goals and 65 points.

The 2017–18 season was a memorable one for Staal as he played his 1,000th game on March 19, 2017,[21] and was also invited to his fifth NHL All-Star Game.[22] Staal ended the season registering 42 goals, having his first 40 plus goal season since 2008–09.

On February 25, 2019, Staal agreed to a two-year, $6.5 million extension with the Wild.[23] On December 15, 2019, Staal became the 89th player all-time to score 1000 career points.[24]

Buffalo Sabres[edit]

After completing his fourth season with the Wild and entering his final season under contract, Staal was traded by Minnesota to the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for forward Marcus Johansson on September 16, 2020.[25]

International play[edit]

Eric Staal (4400857316) (b).jpg
Staal at the 2010 Winter Olympics
Medal record
Representing Canada Canada
Men's ice hockey
Olympic Winter Games
Gold medal – first place 2010 Vancouver
World Championships
Gold medal – first place 2007 Moscow
Silver medal – second place 2008 Halifax / Quebec City

Staal received his first calls to Team Canada for the 2007 World Championships in Moscow. Along with younger brother Jordan, he won gold in a 4–2 win against Finland,[26] scoring five goals, including the overtime winner in the quarter-finals over the Czech Republic.[27] In the following year, Staal was back with Team Canada at the 2008 World Championships in Quebec City, winning a silver medal.[26] He scored eight goals in the tournament, four of them in Canada's 10–1 defeat of Germany.[28]

Four years after being named only for Canada's taxi squad for the 2006 Winter Olympics, Staal was selected for the Canadian team at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.[29] He became a starter alongside Sidney Crosby and Jarome Iginla,[30] and scored one goal and five assists on the path to a gold medal. The Olympic title added with previous NHL and World Championship wins made Staal the 23rd player in the Triple Gold Club.[26]

Staal was named captain of Team Canada in the 2013 World Championships in Stockholm.[31] He would get injured in the first period of the quarter-finals, which Canada ended up losing to eventual champions Sweden, after a knee-on-knee hit by defenceman Alexander Edler.[32]

Personal life[edit]

Staal married his longtime girlfriend Tanya Van den Broeke on August 3, 2007. The couple have three sons and reside in Edina, Minnesota.[33] Staal is a Christian.[34]

Records[edit]

  • Carolina Hurricanes' franchise record for most hat tricks in a single season – 4 (2008–09)
  • Carolina Hurricanes' franchise record for most career post-season points – 43
  • Carolina Hurricanes' franchise record for consecutive games – 349 (2004–2009)[32]
  • Tied Minnesota Wild's franchise record for most goals in a single season – 42 (2017–18)

Career statistics[edit]

Regular season and playoffs[edit]

Bold indicates led league

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1999–2000 Thunder Bay Kings Bantam AAA Bantam 59 48 52 100 33
2000–01 Peterborough Petes OHL 63 19 30 49 23 7 2 5 7 4
2001–02 Peterborough Petes OHL 56 23 39 62 40 6 3 6 9 10
2002–03 Peterborough Petes OHL 66 39 59 98 36 7 5 9 14 6
2003–04 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 81 11 20 31 40
2004–05 Lowell Lock Monsters AHL 77 26 51 77 88 11 2 8 10 12
2005–06 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 82 45 55 100 81 25 9 19 28 8
2006–07 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 82 30 40 70 68
2007–08 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 82 38 44 82 50
2008–09 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 82 40 35 75 50 18 10 5 15 4
2009–10 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 70 29 41 70 68
2010–11 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 81 33 43 76 72
2011–12 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 82 24 46 70 48
2012–13 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 48 18 35 53 54
2013–14 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 79 21 40 61 74
2014–15 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 77 23 31 54 41
2015–16 Carolina Hurricanes NHL 63 10 23 33 32
2015–16 New York Rangers NHL 20 3 3 6 2 5 0 0 0 4
2016–17 Minnesota Wild NHL 82 28 37 65 34 5 0 1 1 0
2017–18 Minnesota Wild NHL 82 42 34 76 42 5 1 1 2 2
2018–19 Minnesota Wild NHL 81 22 30 52 34
2019–20 Minnesota Wild NHL 66 19 28 47 28 4 1 4 5 2
NHL totals 1,240 436 585 1,021 818 62 21 30 51 20

International[edit]

Year Team Event Result GP G A Pts PIM
2001 Canada U18 1st place, gold medalist(s) 5 0 0 0 7
2002 Canada WJC18 6th 8 2 5 7 4
2007 Canada WC 1st place, gold medalist(s) 9 5 5 10 6
2008 Canada WC 2nd place, silver medalist(s) 8 4 3 7 6
2010 Canada OG 1st place, gold medalist(s) 7 1 5 6 6
2013 Canada WC 5th 8 0 3 3 4
Junior totals 13 2 5 7 11
Senior totals 32 10 16 26 22

Awards and honours[edit]

Closeup of Staal's gold medal from the 2010 Winter Olympics
Award Year
CHL
OHL Top Prospect Award 2003
OHL Second All-Star Team 2003
Top Prospects Game 2003
CHL First All-Star Team 2003
AHL
Best Plus/Minus 2005
NHL
NHL YoungStars Game 2004
Stanley Cup champion 2006
NHL Second All-Star Team 2006
NHL All-Star Game 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2018, 2020
EA Sports NHL cover athlete 2008
NHL All-Star Game MVP 2008 [12]
International
World Championship Gold 2007
Olympic Gold 2010 [26]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Hockey's Staal brothers powered to NHL stardom by Dutch soup | Correspondent Frank Kuin". frankkuin.com. Retrieved July 3, 2017.
  2. ^ a b "Eric Staal Q&A". The Hockey News. March 22, 2009. Archived from the original on February 1, 2014. Retrieved March 22, 2009.
  3. ^ "Linda and Henry Staal are raising a family of hockey stars". ESPN. April 16, 2009. Retrieved April 16, 2009.
  4. ^ a b c "Eric Staal media biography" (PDF). Carolina Hurricanes. March 4, 2008. Retrieved March 4, 2008.
  5. ^ "Where hockey players grow". The Globe and Mail. May 16, 2010. Retrieved May 16, 2010.
  6. ^ "2000 Priority Selection". Ontario Hockey League.
  7. ^ Berra, Lindsay. "Family Values". ESPN. Retrieved September 26, 2005.
  8. ^ "OHL Announces 2002-03 All-Star Teams". Ontario Hockey League. Retrieved April 24, 2003.
  9. ^ "Fritsche goal caps Cherry comeback in Home Hardware CHL Top Prospects Game". Canadian Hockey League. Retrieved January 22, 2003.
  10. ^ "2004 YoungStars Game rosters". ESPN.com. January 29, 2004. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  11. ^ "Hurricanes, Staal agree to contract extension". Carolina Hurricanes. July 1, 2006. Retrieved July 1, 2006.
  12. ^ a b "All-star game MVP Eric Staal helps set up winner". ctvnews.ca. January 28, 2008. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  13. ^ "Eric Staal agrees to seven year $57M deal with Hurricanes". The Hockey News. July 1, 2009. Retrieved May 6, 2010.
  14. ^ "Hurricanes hit Devils hard with two late goals to steal series". cbssports.com. April 28, 2009. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  15. ^ "Eric Staal named captain of the Carolina Hurricanes". Carolina Hurricanes. January 20, 2010. Retrieved January 20, 2010.
  16. ^ "E. STAAL & LIDSTROM NAMED TEAM CAPTAINS FOR 2011 NHL ALL-STAR WEEKEND". National Hockey League Player's Association. Retrieved January 18, 2011.
  17. ^ "Team Lidstrom wins NHL all-star game". Sportsnet. Retrieved January 31, 2011.
  18. ^ "Rangers acquire Staal from Hurricanes". TSN. February 28, 2016. Retrieved February 28, 2016.
  19. ^ "Rangers Acquire Eric Staal from Carolina". Blueshirts United. February 28, 2016. Archived from the original on March 1, 2016. Retrieved February 28, 2016.
  20. ^ "Wild agrees to terms with Eric Staal". National Hockey League. July 1, 2016. Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  21. ^ "Eric Staal Preps for 1,000th NHL Game". National Hockey League. December 11, 2017. Retrieved March 18, 2017.
  22. ^ Kayleigh Jackson (January 28, 2019). "Look back: Eric Staal at 2018 All-Star Game". NHL.com. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  23. ^ "Eric Staal agrees to two-year extension with Wild". ESPN.com. February 25, 2019. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  24. ^ McLellan, Sarah. "Patrick Kane's hat trick sends Blackhawks over Wild 5-3 at United Center". Star Tribune. Retrieved December 16, 2019.
  25. ^ "Sabres acquire Eric Staal from Wild". National Hockey League. September 16, 2020. Retrieved September 16, 2020.
  26. ^ a b c d "Triple Gold for Eric Staal". International Ice Hockey Federation. February 28, 2010. Archived from the original on June 9, 2010. Retrieved February 28, 2010.
  27. ^ "Staal's OT goal earns Canada spot in Quarters". ESPN. May 8, 2007. Retrieved May 8, 2007.
  28. ^ "Staal, Canada crush Germany for fifth straight win at hockey worlds". ESPN. May 11, 2008. Retrieved May 11, 2008.
  29. ^ "Staal excited for Olympics". Carolina Hurricanes. December 30, 2009. Retrieved December 30, 2009.
  30. ^ "Staal's chance to make history". International Ice Hockey Federation. February 28, 2010. Archived from the original on March 3, 2010. Retrieved February 28, 2010.
  31. ^ "Team Canada roster announced for 2013 Worlds". The Sports Network. May 1, 2013. Retrieved May 1, 2013.
  32. ^ a b "Eric Staal Diagnosed with Third-Degree MCL Sprain". Carolina Hurricanes. March 2, 2009. Retrieved March 2, 2009.
  33. ^ McLellan, Sarah (January 27, 2018). "Hockey-loving Staal children join father Eric Staal to share All-Star experience". Star Tribune. Retrieved February 14, 2018.
  34. ^ Pease, Joshua. "Minnesota Wild's Eric Staal guided by faith as he hits prestigious 1,000-point mark". Sports Spectrum. Retrieved February 11, 2020.

External links[edit]