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Matt Cullen

Matt Cullen Carolina Hurricanes skates has three goals and six points in 17 playoffs games. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

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Matt Cullen Carolina Hurricanes skates has three goals and six points in 17 playoffs games. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Status: Carolina Hurricanes center

HT: 6-foot-1 WT: 205 pounds

DOB: Nov. 2, 1976 IN: Virginia, Minn.

First Hockey Memory
: "Playing in the backyard growing up. I have two brothers (Mark, Joe) who played and we would just play in the backyard all day and all night."

Hockey Inspirations:
"Wayne Gretzky was obviously a huge one. My dad (Terry) was a big one. He was the high school coach in my hometown for 20 years. I learned a lot from him."

Nicknames:
"Not really, Cully has kind of been there for good."

Hobbies/Leisure Activities:
"I like everything. I like to play baseball, football, a little golf. I just like to play sports. Be outside. Tennis I like a lot."

Favorite Movies
: "The Natural with Robert Redford, the baseball movie."

Favorite TV Shows
: "I don't know. I liked Seinfeld a lot."

Musical Tastes
: "I like everything; anything from Pearl Jam to country music. We kind of get Pearl Jam, all different kinds of music here. Then I go home in the summertime to Minnesota and it's all country. So I get the whole range."

First Job:
"I was putting insulation into houses. Not a lot of fun."

First Car:
"Was a Pontiac 6000 (grey). Where the steering wheel just shook, so when you got to where you were going, your hands were just like you mowed the lawn."

Favorite Meal:
"My mom's (Nancy) homemade waffles."

Favorite Breakfast Cereal:
"I like that Kashi cereal."

Favorite Ice Cream Flavor:
"Mint."

Pre-game Feeling:
"Just thinking about how to try to use my speed as much as possible and take the puck to the net. That's kind of the main focus I have, offensively, anyway. Take the puck to the net. Use your speed."

Greatest Sports Moment:
"Ah, winning the Stanley Cup."

Most Painful Moment:
"Probably losing in the state high school championship my senior year was the worst sports moment."

Worst Injury
: "I had a sports hernia that kept me out for a while. It was a tough injury to come back from because everything comes from your core."

Favorite Uniforms
: "I really like the Rangers, the one with the laces in the front. The old school, I like those a lot."

Favorite Arena To Play:
"I actually enjoyed playing in Montreal. I like their building."

Closest NHL Friends
: "Too many to name. I think pretty much everybody on the team. When you go through the run that we did together, you get to be pretty close friends."

Funniest Players Encountered:
"I'd say Ray Whitney. He's just a little, creepy little guy. He's really funny, though."

Toughest Competitor(s):
"Scott Stevens was one of the toughest guys I played against."

Funny Hockey Memory
: "I had my windshield Vaselined. I came out of the rink and there's Vaseline all over my windshield. And I turned on the wipers because I was an idiot and I didn't know what I was doing. I turn on the wipers and there's Vaseline all over my car. That was funny. (Who did it?) Actually it was Aaron Ward (laughs)."

Favorite Athletes To Watch:
"I used to really like to watch Michael Jordan. I like Michael Vick. I like watching LeBron James, the way he plays is pretty impressive. Steve Nash I like to watch. (NHL?) A guy like Ovechkin and Sidney Crosby - the way they play with the puck."

Personality Qualities Most Admired:
"I like people with the courage of their convictions. People who stand up for what they think no matter what. I'm really impressed with that. Even if it's not a popular stance, they stick up for what they think. I respect that a lot."

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 amazon.com. For more features from the world of sports, check out thebiofile.com.

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