Skip to main content

Eric Staal

The Hockey News

The Hockey News

Status: Carolina Hurricanes center

HT: 6-foot-4 WT: 205 pounds

DOB: Oct. 29, 1984 In: Thunder Bay, Ont.

Hockey Inspirations:
“Probably my parents. My dad; just his love for the game, filtered through, I think, to myself and my other brothers. Their passion for the game kind of grew into us.”

First Hockey Memory:
“Probably back in my hometown, my uncle (Gary) was my coach. I remember being out on the ice, I think I scored zero goals my first year (age 4), my second year I had six. Then my third year, I think I had 70 or 80. So, just those first three years were a lot of fun just being out there and playing with friends.”

Leisure Activities/Interests:
“Play some golf in the summer and I like to play beach volleyball at the lake. And my brother owns a cabin right next door to mine and we have some pretty heated games of volleyball, so it's fun. A little bit of tennis, started to play last summer. Getting into that a little more. It's a little harder on my joints than some of the other sports, but it's a lot of fun, too.”

“Staaly, Staaler. Basically those are the main two that were the ones all the way through since I was really young.”

Favorite Movie:
Wedding Crashers, Dumb & Dumber, anything that's funny, good time, laughs.”

Favorite TV Show:
“I like watching Lost and Prison Break.”

Musical Tastes:
“I like everything. I like a lot of country music: Big & Rich, Tim McGraw, Linkin Park, Nickleback, Techno, Bob Sinclair.”

Last Book Read:
Lone Survivor by Marcus Luttrell (the eyewitness account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of Seal Team 10).”

First Job:
“I worked at my family's sod farm, my dad and my uncle were the two owners. Worked on that ever since I can remember.”

First Car:
“1997 Pontiac Sunfire (bronze).”

Current Car:
“Dodge Ram pickup truck (silver). I was fortunate enough to win from the All-Star Game (2008). And an '08 Maserati (black).”

Favorite Uniforms:
“I like the original ones; Chicago's, the Leafs. Any of the Original Six.”

Pre-game Feeling:
“Just excited. Usually get a little bit of something going on in the stomach, as far as butterflies or something. Just excited to get out there. Stick to the same routines and rituals. I try to get going right off the bat.”

Favorite Meal:
“I'd say probably Chinese.”

Favorite Ice Cream Flavor:
“Anything, I love all ice cream. Anything from Cold Stones - 'All Lovin', No Oven.' (Say what?) Cold Stone Creamery – it's like an ice cream chain in the States (based in Westbury, N.Y.). It's like a thing on the menu (consists of cake batter, ice cream, cookie dough, fudge, whipped cream in a waffle base).”

Greatest Sports Moment:
“Winning the Stanley Cup (in 2006).”

Most Painful Moment:
“Probably my third year in junior. We lost Game 7 (to Oshawa) in overtime. It ended up being my last game of junior (2003). And then last year missing the playoffs was pretty tough.”

Closest Hockey Friend(s):
“Probably Cam Ward, Andrew Ladd, Erik Cole and Ryan Bayda.”

Funniest Player Encountered:
“Ray Whitney. Chad LaRose. Those are two guys on our team that are pretty good.”

Toughest Competitors:
“To play, probably Chara. Tough to play against.”

Favorite Players To Watch:
“Joe Sakic. I like watching my brothers play. In Pittsburgh, (Jordan), Crosby and Malkin. They've got some good offensive players. Any of the offensive guys are fun to watch; see some goals and some neat plays.”

Funny Hockey Memory
: “Ray Whitney has just got great one-liners for any situation. He's always got a quick something for any situation. And it’s usually bang on. I don't know, I don't know how he does it, but he's got a great memory.”

Embarrassing Hockey Memory:
“Nothing too crazy or embarrassing, probably falling over the boards, coming over a couple of times. Look back and the whole bench is laughing at you.”

Last Vacation:
“Went on a cruise throughout Italy and Europe.”

Most Memorable Goal:
“Probably in the playoffs, second round against New Jersey. I scored with three seconds left to tie the game. And we went to overtime and ended-up winning. That was one of my bigger goals.”

Strangest Game:
“Played back-to-back 9-1 losses in junior. That wasn't very fun. I think I was minus-8 in two games.”

Personality Qualities Most Admired: “Probably just honesty and loyalty. And then passion - for whatever it is you're passionate about.”

Click HERE to read more "Getting to Know" features.

Mark "Scoop" Malinowski's first book "Heavyweight Armageddon: The Lewis-Tyson Championship Battle" is available at For more features from the world of sports, check out



Prospect Pool Overview: New Jersey Devils

The New Jersey Devils have a handful of quality prospects ready to make their mark on the NHL. Tony Ferrari takes a look at the players you need to know.

NHL 22

NHL 23 Wishlist: 10 Things We Want to See

The latest NHL video game isn't far away. There's a ton of things fans would love to see added, or changed, so here's a look at a few key adjustments we'd like to see for NHL 23.

Patrick Kane

Should The Buffalo Sabres Pursue Patrick Kane?

With Patrick Kane in the final season of his contract, there's growing speculation whether he'll stay with the rebuilding Chicago Blackhawks or go elsewhere. Some wonder if he could go to his hometown team.