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Best Hockey Names - Carolina's All-Star Team

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A listing of the coolest names of players to ever wear the Hurricanes sweater

Stu "The Grim Reaper" Grimson doing battle for the Hurricanes in 1997
Stu "The Grim Reaper" Grimson doing battle for the Hurricanes in 1997
Craig Jones/Getty Images

Sometimes a person's name fits their profession perfectly.

For instance, if your surname is "St. Jacques", you reside in the province of Quebec, and you name your baby boy "Bruno", you are pretty much mapping out that kid's destiny.  He almost has to grow up to be a hockey player.

Then there are nicknames.  Almost every player has one, but some are certainly better than others.  The best ones are the ones that are earned.  Like, Dominick "The Dominator" Hasek, or  Pavel "The Russian Rocket" Bure, or Teemu "The Finnish Flash" Selanne.

There is nothing better than a nickname that exudes greatness.

Over the years, the Hurricanes have had their fair share of players who had unique names where you could just nod your head and say to yourself, "yeah, now that's a hockey player's name".

And of course, there have also been a few players with awesome nicknames in Carolina as well.

Here is a listing of my favorites, an All-Star team of cool names and nicknames, of sorts.

The Blueline:

Sandis "Ozo" Ozolinsh - Some called him the "Wizard of Oz", because of his wide open style and ability to handle the puck, but he never meshed well in Carolina's more conservative system.  The trade sending him along with Byron Ritchie to Florida for Bret Hedican, Kevyn Adams, and Tomas Malec was a game-changer for the franchise.

Bruno St. Jacques -  One of my personal favorite hockey names.

Anton Babchuk -  There is a lot you can do with this name.  He had one of the hardest slapshots I ever saw but it was rarely on net.

Mike Commodore - Many fans wanted him to don the number 64 but according to Hockey Reference, he never wore it in his career.

Bob "The Boogieman" Boughner - Boughner had a tough-as-nails reputation and was a welcome addition but he only played a partial season with the Canes.  Unfortunately, he shared the same nickname, (to a lesser extent),  with the late Derek Boogaard and the nickname never took off for him like it might have.

Frantisek Kaberle -  I'm not sure why, but he was sometimes called "Frank The Tank".  Still, "Frantisek" all by itself is a pretty cool name.  If I was his agent I would have called him "Fantastic Frantisek".

Honorable Mention:

David Tanabe -  This is not necessarily a great hockey name per se, but it's unique just the same.   (Not to be confused with Obi-Wan Kenobi.)

Goaltenders:

Manny Legace -  Like many goalies, he was always good for an interesting quote.  His name by itself is cool enough but I would have dubbed him, Manny "The Legend" Legace.

Tom Barrasso - Was sometimes called "Tomcat".

Honorable Mention:

Arturs Irbe - One major chill the PNC, RBC, or ESA has been missing since "Archie" left Carolina is the chant...  IR-BE....IR-BE....IR-BE...

Forwards:

Ron "The Franchise" Francis - No explanation required.

Rod "The Bod" Brind'Amour -  Brind'Amour had a legendary workout routine.  His "six-packs" had "six-packs".

Martin Gelinas - Earned the nickname "The Eliminator" for scoring the goal that eliminated the Leafs and propelled the Canes to the 2002 Stanley Cup Finals.

Stu "The Grim Reaper" Grimson - One of the best nicknames in hockey and he certainly lived up to it while with this organization.  During just one year in Hartford and one in Carolina, he accumulated over 400 penalty minutes.

Bates Battaglia - It's hard to beat this hockey name and he was also a part of the "BBC Line", the catchiest line name in Hurricanes history.

Jesse Boulerice - Sometimes called "The Bull", he played the game with an edge.

Manny Malhotra -  Anyone who has the first name of "Manny" has a good chance to make this list.

Tuomo Ruutu - How awesome is it that when fans cheer your name, it sounds like they are booing?

Jussi "Juice" Jokinen - Scored some huge goals in the 2009 playoffs which led to notoriety in Carolina.

Andrej Nestrasil - One nickname is "Nesty" but some prefer "Nasty".

Marc Recchi - "Recching Ball" spent only a short time in Carolina but did his part to win the Cup here.

Ryan Bayda - This might be a stretch as a good hockey name but the moniker does lead to many possible nicknames.

Who else deserves to make the cut?  Feel free to let me know in the comments.