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They referred to him as Paul's little...

They referred to him as Paul's little brother. He was about 6 years younger than they were, but he could keep up. So, they let him play.

Jim Carey, 20, still hangs with the big boys. The Washington Capitals rookie goaltending sensation earned NHL Player of the Month honors in March, the same month he was called up from the minors, and resurrected the team's playoff hopes. He also turned the tables on older brother Paul, a member of the Orioles' 40-man roster and a Triple-A Rochester Red Wings first baseman.

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Paul, 26, now is known as Jim Carey's big brother, and relishes the role reversal.

Q: Did you play hockey as a kid?

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A: I played every day growing up during the winter. I played every day like Jim since age 7.

Q: What positions did you play?

A: I was a forward growing up and a defenseman in high school.

Q: Why did you decide to play baseball and not hockey?

A: I had some offers in hockey, not anything particularly substantial. I took a trip out west and looked at Stanford for baseball. I just loved it and knew that was for me.

Q: Did you play hockey with Jim?

A: There was such an age and size difference. I was always bigger and stronger than he was.

Q: When did you realize that he was going to be a better hockey player than you were?

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A: He's always the best player on the ice at every age. He's a super athlete, and he just dominated games even when he was playing at the junior level.

Q: What was it like for Jim growing up as Paul Carey's brother?

A: I think he felt like he was always in my shadow. That's part of the reason why he transferred from my high school [Boston College High School] after his freshman year to Catholic Memorial.

Q: What is it like for you now being Jim Carey's brother?

A: I love it. I know how hard it is to succeed in professional sports, and I'm really proud of him. He's done a great job so far, but he's still got a long way to go, too.

Q: Jim has forbidden your sister, Ellen, from going to his games because he said she's a jinx. He has said you're "on probation." What do you think about that?

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A: That's what he says, but he has a short, short memory. I've been there for some of his biggest games. I saw his first professional game in Portland, I saw his first NHL shutout, I saw him win the state [high school] championship at the [Boston] Garden. I've been to three of this games this year, and I'm 2-1. Several of the games he lost, I was in spring training.

Q: Now that your season has started, how are you going to keep up with Jim through the playoffs?

A: I'll talk with him on the phone, but I don't like to bother him too much. I can understand a lot that he's going through. Now he's getting a feel for what I've been going through the last five or six years.


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