RALEIGH, N.C. – The Carolina Hurricanes have agreed to a one-year contract with Jesse Boulerice, who played in the ECHL with New Orleans and Trenton.
In his first professional season in 1998-99, Boulerice had one assist and 38 penalty minutes in 12 games with New Orleans and three points (1g-2a) and 82 penalty minutes in 24 regular season games with Philadelphia of the American Hockey League. The 6-2 and 218-pound Boulerice returned to the ECHL in 1999-2000 and had 16 points (8g-8a) and 90 penalty minutes in 25 regular season games with Trenton. He also played with Philadelphia in the AHL and had seven points (3g-4a) and 85 penalty minutes in 40 regular season games and two assists and four penalty minutes in four playoff games.
In 2003-04 with Carolina, the 25-year-old Boulerice posted career highs with six goals, seven points, 127 penalty minutes and 76 games. He led the Hurricanes in penalty minutes and was one of 10 Carolina players to play in more than 75 regular season games. In the final two games of the season, the native of Plattsburgh, N.Y. had three goals, including his first multiple-goal game on April 2 against the New York Islanders.
Selected in the fifth round (133rd overall) by Philadelphia in the 1996 NHL Entry Draft, Boulerice was acquired from Philadelphia on February 13, 2002 for forward Greg Koehler. Boulerice made his NHL debut in 2001-02 appearing in three games with Philadelphia. In 127 NHL games, 124 with Carolina, Boulerice has 10 points (8g-2a) and 240 penalty minutes.
The Premier “AA” Hockey League, the ECHL had affiliations with 21 of the 30 teams in the National Hockey League in 2003-04 and every NHL team had an ECHL player play for it in 2003-04. In 2003-04 there were 40 players that played in the NHL after playing in the ECHL, surpassing the high of 27 players in 1999-2000 and 2000-01. Eleven players, including eight goaltenders, appeared in both the ECHL and the NHL in 2003-04, breaking the high of five players in 2001-02, and a total of 116 ECHL players played in the NHL in 2003-04. There have been 255 players that have played in the NHL after playing in the ECHL.
For the fifth consecutive year the ECHL is represented on the Stanley Cup Champion with Ruslan Fedotenko, Nolan Pratt and Andre Roy as well as radio play-by-play announcer Dave Mishkin and assistant equipment manager Dana Heinze.