It's more simple math than advanced analytics but hockey people agree a gauge of good special teams is having a combined percentage that tops 100 percent.
If so, the Canes meet the benchmark.
Through Thursday's NHL games, Carolina ranks ninth in the NHL on the power play (19.9 percent) and third in penalty killing (85.9). Combined, that's a 105.8 total.
By comparison, the New York Islanders, only a point behind the three Eastern Confernce leaders, have a combined 94.9 total.
While the Canes' penalty killing has been a strength much of the season, there have been struggles on the power play and a lack of consistency. But before Thursday's game against the Dallas Stars, when Carolina was 0-2 in a 5-3 loss, the Canes had been 17-for-60 (28.3 percent) since the All-Star break, the best in the league.
It has been even better the past 12 games: 13-for-38 or 34.2 percent.
"It's been fun to be on a little bit of a roll," winger Jeff Skinner said. "I think we've been moving the puck into the (offensive) end pretty smoothly.
"It's important to get shots but you need to get zone time for that and I think faceoffs have been a big part of that. We've been getting pucks back off draws and our centermen have done a good job of bearing down. More zone time means more opportunities."
One problem for the Canes this season have been breakouts and zone entries. Too often the Canes would gain the zone, only to have penalty killers quickly knock pucks away before the Canes could get set up.
"But again, faceoffs are huge," Skinner said. "If you can win that draw you don't have spend 20 seconds or more trying to get back in the zone. Once in the zone you have to execute and finish. Shoot the puck but also get the traffic and second opportunities."
On a lot of power plays this season, the Canes would get one shot, then chase down the puck at the other end after a P.K. clear. But they've done a better job of getting people in front of the net and gathering in rebounds and misses.
The Canes have twice had three power-play goals in games since Feb. 16. Skinner, Michal Jordan and Chris Terry scored in a 6-3 win at Ottawa, and Skinner had a pair of power-play goals and Andrej Nestrasil the third in the Canes' 7-4 win Sunday against Edmonton.
"The penalty killers in the league are so good now that if you get off one second on your timing or less than a second, you can throw everything off," Skinner said. "We haven't changed our mindset or come up with anything new in our systems. It's just about executing better."
Defenseman Ryan Murphy has helped quarterback the power play for the Canes and for the Charlotte Checkers (AHL). Against the Oilers, he stepped into a shot from the point, had it blocked, but quickly retrieved the puck and passed to Skinner for a shot and score.
"The key thing for a power play is the breakouts and getting into the zone and getting possession before position," Murphy said. "We've been doing that lately. Our entries have been solid and we've been using our middle man well."
Against the Oilers, Murphy played on a unit with John-Michael Liles, Skinner, Jordan Staal and Alex Semin. The other unit had Eric Staal, Elias Lindholm and Nestrasil with Justin Faulk and Jordan at the points. In the Dallas game, Murphy was used with Faulk at the points, and Victor Rask continued to get power-play time.
"There's some chemistry being built," Murphy said. "We're all on the same page and working together as five-man unit."
A year ago, the Canes finished 28th on the power play (14.6 percent) and 17th in penalty killing (81.7) for a 96.3 total. All those numbers are better this year even as the Canes' record is not.