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2013-14 Stat Line: 54 GP, 9 G, 11 A, minus-8
Current Contract: $1.7 million cap hit, expires 2014
Manny Malhotra's addition has helped the Hurricanes rise to eighth in the NHL in team faceoff percentage.
The acquisition of current Florida center Marcel Goc would help them jump even higher.
Goc, 30, leads the Panthers and ranks 27th in the league with a 53.5 winning percentage on 957 attempts (over 300 more than Malhotra). He's also a significant contributor in other areas of the ice, as his 20 points would rank sixth among all 'Canes forwards. Goc is employed as an assistant captain in Florida as well.
And, most impressively, he accomplishes all of the above despite facing the hardest quality of competition of any player on his team.
The 6'1" center has flown under the radar most of his career, but there's little question that he could fill the third-line center hole on Carolina's roster. Panthers GM Dale Tallon, aware of his team's basement-dweller position and Goc's upcoming free agency, wouldn't demand an enormous sum in exchange.
Update: The Fourth Period reports Friday that the Hurricanes are also among four teams eyeing 31-year-old right winger Brad Boyes, who leads the Panthers with 14 goals and carries a $1 million cap hit this season.