Carolina Hurricanes: Jordan Martinook’s 2019-20 Outlook

BOSTON, MA - MAY 12: Carolina Hurricanes center Jordan Martinook (48) skates before Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs Eastern Conference Finals between the Boston Bruins and the Carolina Hurricanes on May 12, 2019, at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - MAY 12: Carolina Hurricanes center Jordan Martinook (48) skates before Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs Eastern Conference Finals between the Boston Bruins and the Carolina Hurricanes on May 12, 2019, at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /
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Jordan Martinook has the heart and determination you want to see in a hockey player. What will we see from the fiery forward in his second season as a Carolina Hurricane?

Just like many Carolina Hurricanes players last season, Jordan Martinook broke a career high in a few statistical categories. While an increase in depth scoring was great for the Canes, Martinook was impactful in many other ways for the team. He was a leader that many of the young players on the team had looked up to, and his energy was infectious. The team fed off of his energy and the fans’ energy that was sometimes fueled by Martinook himself.

Which statistics did Martinook break his career high in, you ask? The first is goals. Martinook never had more than 11 goals in a season until last year when he had 15 for the Hurricanes. He was brought in to be an elite-level penalty killer and be a solid forechecking forward with grit for the Canes. A season of 15 goals was completely unexpected, but it was beneficial for the Hurricanes’ success.

Three of the 15 goals were collected in his first career hat trick against the Florida Panthers on November 23, 2018. Martinook himself was even surprised to get a hat trick on the NHL level.

In addition to goals, Martinook also shattered his career high in hits with 199 last season. His previous was 128, which was in his final season with the Arizona Coyotes. This is noteworthy because these 199 hits led the entire Carolina Hurricanes roster, especially on a team that had an enforcer like Micheal Ferland.

Now for the important question: what will we see from Jordan Martinook in the 2019-20 season?

You should see even more of a leadership role, regardless of Justin Williams‘ future with the Hurricanes. Martinook has made his mark on this team in a big way. As mentioned before, this may be one of the most energetic and determined players that the Hurricanes have had in a while.

His teammates are magnetic to the energy that comes off of him. You saw it in the playoffs when Martinook looked too hurt to even skate and he gutted out games to be there for his teammates. He could be a dark horse captain candidate if Williams decides not to return.

Although he was able to break his career high in goals last season, a decrease in that category could be coming. And this is not at all a shot at Martinook; however, it is about the surplus of offense that the Hurricanes were able to get over the course of the offseason. It won’t be a far drop, but expect anywhere from 10-12 goals, which is still a solid contribution from a third/fourth liner.

Expect Martinook to break a career high in a statistic that he wasn’t able to last season: assists. With the Hurricanes’ much-needed offensive reinforcements coming in next season, that makes the Hurricanes depth on offense much deeper. That being said, Martinook will have the opportunity to play with more skilled forwards this season, allowing him to be able to pass to players with a better chance of scoring. That will raise the assist totals regardless of the player.

Jordan Martinook will surpass 200 hits next season. He is going to be labeled as the Carolina Hurricanes next enforcer due to Ferland’s departure. He could break into the top five in the NHL in hits next season as he is a very aggressive forechecker and penalty killer. He isn’t afraid to use his body to gain separation.

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Question for CC Readers: What was your favorite Jordan Martinook moment from last season?