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  1. To quote myself, "NHL = Parity". The difference between the haves and have nots is WAY different than other major sports leagues.
  2. Not sure "final exam" is the best phrase to characterize this game. "Reality check" might sum it up better. Since Day 1 of the Whalers versus Bruins in 1979, it has been one rough battle to the next. It dos not seem as if the Canes match up well in a playoff series against this type of physical opponent, but as I have said about this league of parity, on any given night any team beats any team. For the long term, it may be valuable to see how the Bruins expose some of the Canes weaknesses (or not), and go from there.
  3. 1) What is the story on Necas? Is he injured or did he just need some time out to watch from the box? 2) It is December 1, so I think there should be an official JW Watch initiated for the month. I would love to see him go for it. 3) I am all in on management taking chances such as trading Roy for Haula. I am not sure if he will ever play again. Having had 3 knee surgeries and a replacement, I know what a touchy situation the joint is. On the other hand, what were they thinking when they committed 4 years to Gardiner? I don't see any way you can equate Gardiner to Faulk.
  4. Seems like Karmanos has totally thrown Ronnie under the bus, saying he would have fired Peters in a nanosecond if he had known any of this, and that he has his calls into Ronnie. Well, PK, the buck does not stop at Ronnie, so it's going to be hard to distant yourself. Ronnie is a class act, and I suspect now that the Flames have dismissed Peters, Ronnie will come forward.
  5. I have a difficult time accepting Ronnie Francis is in any way a bad guy, at least until this story plays out. Please do not rush to judge him. I have followed him for just under 40 years, really believe he is a good person, so again, it is a mistake to pre-judge until the facts come out.
  6. Speaking of ex Canes, while there should be no rush to judgement on the allegations surrounding Bill Peters, should they prove to be true, it does not speak highly of Ron Francis's review of Peters' qualifications for the job back when.
  7. I was surprised they signed de Haan to a 4 year deal when it happened, because it seemed to be the team's strength with Bean, Fleury and McKeown waiting for their turns. When he turned out to be so dependable, I looked in the mirror and said to the fellow I saw, "What do you know?" When they traded him, I thought, hey, he was a 1 year rental they had to sign to a 4 year deal to buy some development time for their D prospects. It did not matter so much what they got in return, they were freeing up salary space to sign some forwards, which they did in taking on Haula and signing Dzingel. Nice plan! Wait, you are signing Gardiner? What?????? Really did not get this signing and still do not. I think I would rather have Fleury and TVR on the 3rd line, and money in the pocket to acquire a forward at the trading deadline, JW or other.
  8. I don't think teams were lining up to sign Gardiner. Toronto could not unload him at the trade deadline and I suspect the Canes would have an equally challenging time finding a partner in trade. With their stockpile of suitable 3rd line Dmen such as McKeown, Forsling, Priskie, and Bean (not to mention Fleury who can't be sent down without passing through waivers), committing to Gardiner's contract on the FA market was more surprising than signing deHaan, which was also surprising. I would not worry about future signings. If the team builds a winning culture FA's will want to come.
  9. There is really little point in sizing up the relative schedules of the Canes and their competition for playoff spots. The NHL defines the word PARITY when it comes to sports leagues. The Haves and Have Nots don't seem to matter so much as they do in any other sport. Bad bounces, hit posts, and other variables make it no surprise when any team beats any team in this league. Things do change when the playoffs begin and teams are mano y mano against the same foes. The physical side of the game becomes the X factor, and it was for that reason that the Bruins cruised past the Canes last season. What we really need to see is the addition of a physical presence before the end of the season. Ottawa is looking for defense. Wouldn't it be great to ship out Gardiner for someone like that?
  10. Not totally unexpected. I had my first knee surgery in 1971 from basketball, 2nd in 1991 from skiing, ultimately knee replacement a few years ago. Playing sports, especially at the pro level, with broken knees, is not a given. Why isn't Morgan Geekie getting a look? He is leading the Checkers in scoring.
  11. I agree that Skinner and Faulk are two approachable professional athletes whose personalities bode well for representing their organizations. Each was a + contributor to the Canes, but each was not going to get prioritized in the distribution of available Canes $$, so trades of each with one year remaining on their deals, were prudent. The return for Faulk has been a pleasant surprise. Edmundson provides some of the muscle missing from the Ferland, Saku, and JW departures. I am liking his presence a lot more than Gardiner's. At the point I wish they would have invested Gardiner's $ on a power forward, as I would be fine with Fleury full time and any from Forsling, McKeown, Priskie, and Bean to back up.
  12. I could not agree with you more. I can not understand what the chatter about Skinner on this site is all about. He is a professional hockey player that once played for the Canes, and now plays for the Sabres. Professional athletes are pretty much nomads these days, available for hire to the highest bidder. Each team has just so much resources within the framework of the CBA, and Skinner's money has been distributed elsewhere by the Canes, obviously to a better net value.
  13. I don't get to see Canes games so I plea mea culpa that my comments stem from the stat sheets and from having followed this game for about 60 years. The Canes are losing games, and things don't look up, but: 1) The NHL stands for parity. Losses to the league's lepers could just as easily be followed by wins against the league's titans. 2) Aho seems to be playing like a young man burdened by the stress of the expectations that come with a big contract. Oh, that's the case, so we just have to wait for him to overcome that. 3) Losing Haula from this offense for an extended period would not be good. 4) The Jake Gardiner signing appears to be a bad one. His offensive game from the D has essentially replaced Faulk, but even the most active Faulk critics on this board can see he was more productive and played way more minutes. 5) Losing the physicality of JW, Ferland, and Saku has been a net negative compared to the addition of Haula (hurt), Dzingel, and Gardiner. 6) Every time Reimer gets a start, it is not like when Mac started last year. I thought the Canes had just as much chance to win with Mac as with Petr. This year I expect the Canes to lose with Reimer. This is a team that should compete for a playoff spot if Haula's injury is short termed, and they get a productive JW back to help lead. Otherwise, their one year return to the post season may take a break.
  14. Ferland on injured reserve list for concussion protocol. He has had a tough go of it with injuries since we "met" him.
  15. The only letter JW needs to wear on his sweater is W, for Winner. Winner for the Canes, winner for the Kings, winner for the Caps, soldier for the Flyers. What player on the Canes roster can anyone look to as someone who has seen this thing through, in terms of going all the way? JW's value to this club this year would be immeasurable. If anyone disagrees take 2 pills and call the doc in the morning.
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