Jeff Carter (born January 1, 1985) is a Canadian professional ice hockey centre for the Los Angeles Kings of the National Hockey League (NHL). He is an alternate captain for the Flyers during away games.
Carter began his hockey career with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL), before the Philadelphia Flyers selected him 11th overall in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft. He was a Second Team All-Star in 2003–04 before recording a major junior career-high 74 points (34 goals and 40 assists) in 55 games for the Greyhounds in 2004–05. He was a First Team OHL All-Star that season and won the OHL and CHL Sportsman of the Year Awards. After the Greyhounds were eliminated from the 2005 playoffs, Carter joined the Flyers’ American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Philadelphia Phantoms and recorded 23 points (12 goals, 11 assists) in 21 playoff games to help the Phantoms win the Calder Cup.
The next season, in 2005–06, Carter made the Flyers out of training camp. He was joined by fellow rookies Mike Richards and R. J. Umberger, who were both also instrumental in the Phantoms’ Calder Cup championship of the previous season. He scored his first career NHL goal on October 24, 2005, against Roberto Luongo of the Florida Panthers. He finished the campaign first in team-scoring among rookies with 23 goals and 42 points.
Then, after 37- and 53-point seasons, Carter and the Flyers agreed to a 3-year, $15-million contract extension, on June 27, 2008, days before he was set to become a restricted free agent. He responded with a breakout campaign in 2008–09, leading the team in scoring with 46 goals and 84 points. During the season, he was named to his first NHL All-Star Game, representing the Eastern Conference. Despite a strong regular season, Carter was held to just 1 goal in 6 playoff games as the Flyers were eliminated by the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-2. His series was also marred when he failed to score with an open net in front of him in Game 2 of the series, where Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury made a toe save to block the shot that would have given the Flyers a 3-1 lead late in the third period. Carter was later called off for a hooking penalty and the Penguins scored to tie the game and eventually win in overtime. It was later revealed that Carter had played the final four games of the series with a separated shoulder.
Carter debuted internationally with Team Canada at the 2003 IIHF World U18 Championships. He scored 6 points in 7 games, helping Canada to their first gold medal at the tournament. Carter was then a member of Canada’s national junior team for the 2004 and 2005 IIHF World U20 Championship. Winning silver and gold, he was named to the tournament’s All-Star Team in both instances. His combined 12 goals over both years tie him with Eric Lindros and John Tavares for the all-time Canadian record for most goals scored during the World Juniors. Lindros, however, played three tournaments in 1990, 1991 and 1992 (one more than both Carter and Tavares). Two other members of both medal teams, Mike Richards and Braydon Coburn would later become teammates of Carter with the Flyers. Coburn and Richards were also drafted in 2003, 8th overall by Atlanta and 24th overall by Philadelphia respectively.
- Named to the OHL Second All-Star Team in 2004.
- Named to the OHL First All-Star Team in 2005.
- Won the William Hanley Trophy (OHL Sportsman of the Year) in 2005.
- Won the CHL Sportsman of the Year in 2005.
- Named to the World Junior All-Star Team in 2004 and 2005.
- Won a World Junior gold medal with Team Canada in 2005.