The state of North Carolina has one major professional sports championship. The person most responsible for that title is Rod Brind’Amour. The captain of the 2005-06 Stanley Cup champion Carolina Hurricanes, Brind’Amour was one of the great leaders in hockey history, and arguably the most important player to ever wear a Hurricanes sweater.
Acquired by the Hurricanes from the Philadelphia Flyers on Jan. 23, 2000, Brind’Amour served as an alternate captain in 2002, when the Hurricanes first broke through, winning the Southeast Division and Eastern Conference championships to bring the Stanley Cup Final to North Carolina for the first time.
But it was in 2005-06 when he became a North Carolina sports legend. Named the Hurricanes’ captain prior to the season, Brind’Amour netted 31 goals and earned 39 assists (70 points) that season to lead the team to a franchise-record 52 regular-season wins. He then led the NHL with 12 goals during the 2006 Stanley Cup playoffs, which culminated with a Game 7 victory against the Edmonton Oilers.
Born near Ottawa and raised in British Columbia, Brind’Amour was originally drafted by the St. Louis Blues in the first round – the ninth overall selection – in the 1988 NHL entry draft. He debuted with the Blues during the 1989 Stanley Cup playoffs after completing one season at Michigan State, and scored a goal on his first NHL shot against the Minnesota North Stars. He was named to the NHL’s All-Rookie team in 1990, after scoring 61 points in 79 games for St. Louis, and played in the NHL All-Star Game while a member of the Flyers in 1992.
Brind’Amour represented Canada in the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan, and was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the NHL’s top defensive forward for both the 2005-06 and 2006-07 seasons as a member of the Hurricanes.
He officially retired as a player on June 30, 2010, completing his career ranked 16th in NHL history in games played (1,484), 44th in assists (732), 46th in points (1,184) and 54th in goals (452) during the course of 21 seasons with St. Louis, Philadelphia and Carolina. He played in 159 career Stanley Cup playoff games, totaling 51 goals and 60 assists (111 points) and participating in the Stanley Cup final three times – 1997 with Philadelphia and 2002 and 2006 with Carolina.
He ranks second in career points for the Hurricanes since the team’s relocation to North Carolina, notching 473 points in 694 games played. His No. 17 jersey hangs in the rafters of PNC Arena. He has served as an assistant coach for the Hurricanes since 2011.
Brind’Amour also is a member of the Philadelphia Flyers Hall of Fame, as well as the British Columbia Hockey Hall of Fame. In 2002, he was honored with the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal, awarded to Canadians who have made significant contributions to their fellow citizens, their community, or Canada, for his work with the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
He and his wife, the former Amy Biedenbach, reside in Raleigh with their son, Brooks. Brind’Amour also has a daughter, Briley, and two sons, Skyler and Reece.
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