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coastal_caniac

The Official 2011-12 Off-Season Thread

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As each day passes it seems less and less likely that JR is going to make a significant move any time soon. Clearly I think he should and if cost were no issue he would. But cost is an issue and so it seems less likely. So while I hold out hope on that move, it is fading.

So what is the upside potential for this team as is? The problem with this team is not quite enough proven skill, which leaves more to chance than we should. But the upside is that the team could surprise and get into a position to be buyers for once at the deadline. Plus, JR has a lot of tradable assets. This team does have significant upside as is.

In a nutshell, while this team is not likely to shut anyone down defensively, we do have the chance to put up some goals, and we do have an All Star goalie, and a decent back up goalie.

We can get away with a somewhat porous defense if we:

1. Have an All Star Goalie

2. At least shut it down a little more smack dab in front of Cam.

Hopefully Gleason, Allen, Harrison can do this, with the new d coach

3. We put up goals.

I'm going to focus on #3.

Of course we need our 4 solid guys to stay relatively healthy and produce as expected:

Staal, Jokinen, Ruutu, Skinner. If healthy they will produce, period.

Sutter is a special case. While he may not be thrilled to be a shut down guy, it is a living, and makes him invaluable no matter what he produces. Still, he has proven the potential to put up 20 goals, and I really think he will again this year.

Then there are all the hopefuls. While it would be nice not to have to hope so much, there is hope there:

Poni: the guy brings the near the net presence that we need. He has put up 20 more than once. He's a pretty good bet if healthy.

Stewart: Here I rely entirely on JR and those of you who have seen him. 40 points is not terrible if he did it over a shorter period and didn't always see prime time ice. If he were a sure bet, his home team would have kept him. But this is JR's type of guy. Some work (Jussi) some don't (Hamilton). But he is big and again can provide some net presence. I detect a theme here. If he hits his potential JR gets back to genius status and we do well.

Dalpe: So far very nice AHL and College numbers. Will he be ready to break out in the NHL? Lots of hope pinned on him. Like Stewart if he is NHL ready for the top 6 it could be a much nicer year than expected.

LaRose: I've been tough on Chad this year. But in the past I've always defended him. I think he has NHL level skills, not just heart, but skills. But he is a small guy, and doesn't have the off the hook skills a small guy needs to be a first liner. Still he has put up (almost) 20 goals in the NHL, and that's not a bad guy to have on the third line. His minus 21 was an aberration. He's never been near that bad in the past. If LaRose sniffs the first line, Mo should be fired on the spot. But if he stays on the 3rd line, he will surprise.

That is in theory the top 9. The downside is a lot of hope. The upside is that any one and all of these top 9 have 20 goal potential. Dalpe is a stretch, but it is possible. That could amount to amazing depth. Just for fun, if McBain or Pits somehow dropped in 20 goals and all 9 listed above did, it would tie for #2 all time most 20 goal scorers on one team.

There are the wildcards of Tlusty, Boychuk and Bowman also.

Anyway, with Kabs as a slight upgrade on Corvo, especially on the powerplay, and more bodies in front of the net, and LaRose back to his proper spot, and Sutter finding a bit more offense, and guys like McBain, Joslin, Dalpe even Skinner with one more year under their belts (McBain could really surprise offensively)....

We really don't need all of those guys to break out, but we do need at least 2 of them to. If Stewart and Poni hit 20 and Dalpe shows strides and hits 15, as long as LaRose trims that plus minus, and the other upgrades pan out, we could be better than advertised.

Anyway, for those who like us being underrated and surprising teams that take us lightly. This would be a team for that.

I agree with this post although in my opinion, signing Chad LaRose was a big mistake. Yes, he provides energy and is a fan favorite and a great lockerroom presence, but you need to look past that. He will probably score 15 goals and average 20-25 points a season which is not terrible for the 3rd/4th liner he is. There is no need to spend a couple million on him when we could fill his spot with upcoming prospects like Dalpe, Boychuk, Bowman, etc. who in my opinion, all deserve to be in the top nine. But I guess it won't hurt us to sign Rosey and I really think Stewart is going to have a big year for us-20 goals, 40-50 points.

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From Hockey Buzz:

"This just in from a source out west.

It looks like the hurricanes may be willing to part with a "star player" for "a different positional star player" off of Vancouver's roster.

The canucks were talking to NJ, but for now it looks like Carolina is "much more of an active participant.

More in the am..."

Just when you thought JR was dormant.

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From Hockey Buzz:

"This just in from a source out west.

It looks like the hurricanes may be willing to part with a "star player" for "a different positional star player" off of Vancouver's roster.

The canucks were talking to NJ, but for now it looks like Carolina is "much more of an active participant.

More in the am..."

Just when you thought JR was dormant.

Aren't you the same guy who last posted the RUMOR from the Hardy Soup guy about a trade involving Hemskey? It's one thing to post a rumor, it's all together a different animal when you try and spin it like there is some substance to it. I guess some have nothing better to do at 2:00 AM during the most boring time of year. Give it a break.

Edited by coastal_caniac

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That bold faced comment was more of a response to a previous post where someone said they didn't expect JR to make any big moves. Half the comments on here are speculation anyway, what difference does it make if someone tries to provoke more speculation by posting a rumor? To be honest I'd rather read a discussion on something like this than the same tired, pessimistic analysis that plagues these boards from it's "experts." Either way, I thought it would make an interesting discussion, even though the rumor itself doesn't seem like something JR would be interested in doing at this point in the offseason.

Why are some people so bitter? Nothing I said even has to affect you, yet you feel the need to come at someone you don't know on an internet forum with personal attacks. If you don't like it, ignore it and move on.

Edited by Gejustin

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That bold faced comment was more of a response to a previous post where someone said they didn't expect JR to make any big moves. Half the comments on here are speculation anyway, what difference does it make if someone tries to provoke more speculation by posting a rumor? To be honest I'd rather read a discussion on something like this than the same tired, pessimistic analysis that plagues these boards from it's "experts." Either way, I thought it would make an interesting discussion, even though the rumor itself doesn't seem like something JR would be interested in doing at this point in the offseason.

So discuss. All you did was post another rumor, this time from Eklund, who by the way, isn't the most respected hockey blogger out there. Plus, this one is so vague it's hard to know where to get started, wouldn't you agree?

Sounds like your idea of a "discussion" is throwing out a rumor expecting everyone else to dissect it. It usually doesn't work that way. Now, if you want to offer some speculation on team's needs and potential players involved to support the rumor, fine, I'm all for that.

Edited by coastal_caniac

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. I guess some have nothing better to do at 2:00 AM during the most boring time of year. Give it a break.

Just a heads up not all of us work and live 9-5 :P

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Just a heads up not all of us work and live 9-5 :P

Well, that's a good point. But it's still Eklund. I'd like to know he (Eklund) came up with this one. Maybe he works those hours as well?

I'm not saying JR isn't looking to deal, cause god forbid he needs too. But, this one's so vague it's hard to comprehend.

Okay, so who is our big star we are willing to part with? We really only have 3, if you count Skinner. And the Canucks are going to part with one of the Sedins, Kesler, or Luongo. Doesn't really sound like there's much to speculate on here to me.

And Gejustin, my apologies, it wasn't meant as an attack. Your post just came out as baiting us with what appears to be another ridiculous rumor, is all. Particularly since you just post and leave. But feel free to jump in here. I am curious to know what you think, since you posted it. :)

Edited by coastal_caniac

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Well, that's a good point. But it's still Eklund. I'd like to know he (Eklund) came up with this one. Maybe he works those hours as well?

I'm not saying JR isn't looking to deal, cause god forbid he needs too. But, this one's so vague it's hard to comprehend.

Okay, so who is our big star we are willing to part with? We really only have 3, if you count Skinner. And the Canucks are going to part with one of the Sedins, Kesler, or Luongo. Doesn't really sound like there's much to speculate on here to me.

And Gejustin, my apologies, it wasn't meant as an attack. Your post just came out as baiting us with what appears to be another ridiculous rumor, is all. Particularly since you just post and leave. But feel free to jump in here. I am curious to know what you think, since you posted it. :)

Well, the problem with Eklund is that he takes the shotgun approach. I haven't been to his site in some time, because I'd get excited about all these rumors and then none of them ever came true. I don't doubt that some of this talk is going on, but I would wager there's A LOT of talking going on between GMs, 99% of which never pans out to anything. I mean, what does JR do in his office all day? Stare at the wall? I'm sure he fields a call or two with his peers to talk shop.

Now, there are two things I'll say about this rumor.

One is a little Machiavellian. Let's say, for kicks, that the Hemsky rumor is true, that Carolina actually is in the running to grab him. But let's say that Edmonton's asking price is too high for JR's blood right now, so he backs off. But we all know JR. The guy loves a good smoke screen. So he doesn't talk with EDM in a while. He picks up the phone and talks with VAN, nothing necessarily serious, but enough that he wants a rumor floated out there that he's talking. That he's interested in someone who could play top line wing and would be willing to part with player A and a draft pick. The rumor makes it to the Internet, makes it to EDM. So it's possible that JR is using the rumor mill to maybe see how serious EDM is about the Hemsky asking price, suggesting that he'll go another way if they don't bring it down.

Two is that Eklund's idea of a star player may be completely different than yours and mine. This could be Allen + pick for Burrows and Eklund would call that "star players being moved!!!"

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Well, the problem with Eklund is that he takes the shotgun approach. I haven't been to his site in some time, because I'd get excited about all these rumors and then none of them ever came true. I don't doubt that some of this talk is going on, but I would wager there's A LOT of talking going on between GMs, 99% of which never pans out to anything. I mean, what does JR do in his office all day? Stare at the wall? I'm sure he fields a call or two with his peers to talk shop.

Now, there are two things I'll say about this rumor.

One is a little Machiavellian. Let's say, for kicks, that the Hemsky rumor is true, that Carolina actually is in the running to grab him. But let's say that Edmonton's asking price is too high for JR's blood right now, so he backs off. But we all know JR. The guy loves a good smoke screen. So he doesn't talk with EDM in a while. He picks up the phone and talks with VAN, nothing necessarily serious, but enough that he wants a rumor floated out there that he's talking. That he's interested in someone who could play top line wing and would be willing to part with player A and a draft pick. The rumor makes it to the Internet, makes it to EDM. So it's possible that JR is using the rumor mill to maybe see how serious EDM is about the Hemsky asking price, suggesting that he'll go another way if they don't bring it down.

Two is that Eklund's idea of a star player may be completely different than yours and mine. This could be Allen + pick for Burrows and Eklund would call that "star players being moved!!!"

Well, what the OP didn't post was Eklund's opening statement prefacing his rumor, which was "Canucks Talking to Hurricanes About Something Big". Then he mentions star players, so take it for what it's worth I guess.

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I'm hoping this rumor is true because we do need to make a deal and I think one is definitely going to happen before the season starts, a big one. If talks with Vancouver are true and star players are involved, I wouldn't be suprised if we make a deal that sends a defenseman over there for a top 6 forward. In my opinion, I'd say it could be something like Pitkanen for Burrows. Were not trading our big 3 superstars but throughout the league, Pitkanen is considered a star defenseman and we would trade him without a doubt if the right offer came along so I would keep an eye on it. Also, Ruutu is a big-time player and although he may not be a star, he could also be involved in a deal-last year of his contract. Just some thoughts...

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I'm hoping this rumor is true because we do need to make a deal and I think one is definitely going to happen before the season starts, a big one. If talks with Vancouver are true and star players are involved, I wouldn't be suprised if we make a deal that sends a defenseman over there for a top 6 forward. In my opinion, I'd say it could be something like Pitkanen for Burrows. Were not trading our big 3 superstars but throughout the league, Pitkanen is considered a star defenseman and we would trade him without a doubt if the right offer came along so I would keep an eye on it. Also, Ruutu is a big-time player and although he may not be a star, he could also be involved in a deal-last year of his contract. Just some thoughts...

Wow. I just made a post about who might be involved in this trade and lost it to the internet gods. My thoughts on what "star" we might actually trade? 1. Pitkanen 2. Ruutu. You beat me to it. I also like that move (Pits not Ruutu). I agree with you on this: Ward, Staal and Skinner are 100%* no trade. Sutter is 95%* no trade and Jussi is 89%* no trade. Ruutu, however, mainly since he is in the last year is a possibility but I really hope not. No one else up front could be called a star with a straight face.

On the back, just a gut feeling that Kaberle is not the guy, but could be. I just can't see Gleason moving, though I guess it's possible. McBain? Read my lips: McBain is nearly a 100%* no trade. PITKANEN is the only one left that could be considered a star.

Pitkanen is a relative value, and with all of our offensive dmen types, potentially the most tradeable and might bring back a real asset up front. I am assuming JR would feel better about it if Pitkanen ok'd it, but he might not mind going to one of the top teams in the league.

Personally I would make that move if it brought a first liner like Burrows. I guess my only question about Burrows and I asking, is that he seems to be a bit of a sniper who benefits greatly from playing with the Sedins. Is he as good as his numbers? He doesn't seem like a playmaker type.

Now in reality, I still think Eklund is right about as often as a broken clock, and no move is likely. That may be a touch pessimistic, but it comes from a few years of watching JR work. I have not seen that level of trade from him before. Maybe this time will be different.

* percentages determined by proprietary RemCane (patent pending) statistical model.

Edited by remkin

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Now in reality, I still think Eklund is right about as often as a broken clock.

A broken clock is right twice every day. I think you're insulting the clock here. lol

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A broken clock is right twice every day. I think you're insulting the clock here. lol

You're probably right! Though the broken clock is also wrong 1438 times a day. tongue.gif

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Personally I would make that move if it brought a first liner like Burrows. I guess my only question about Burrows and I asking, is that he seems to be a bit of a sniper who benefits greatly from playing with the Sedins. Is he as good as his numbers? He doesn't seem like a playmaker type.

Not to rain on the rumor parade, but Burrows is not expected to be in the Canucks lineup until December after his shoulder surgery.

If that's the case, the Canucks have a big hole to fill up front, and likely aren't looking hard at acquiring a defenseman. Trading one for a top-6 forward, maybe, but not the other way around.

Just an observation.

Edited by coastal_caniac

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It's hard to say how this deal would go down, if it goes down at all. All of the "star" players have NTCs. I suppose my fantasy trade in this situation would be Joni for Kesler, to get that 2nd line center we've been craving. Cap hit is pretty close, the rumor states that they'd be players of different positions as well. I don't see Van giving up Kesler that easily though, and I guess it really depends on how good they think Joni could be for them. Obviously that's nothing but a fantasy trade, I think we'd have to give something more too, maybe Boychuk or a Pick too. That's about as "big" as I can make this work out and my guesses are based on absolutely no facts at all.

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Not to rain on the rumor parade, but Burrows is not expected to be in the Canucks lineup until December after his shoulder surgery.

If that's the case, the Canucks have a big hole to fill up front, and likely aren't looking hard at acquiring a defenseman. Trading one for a top-6 forward, maybe, but not the other way around.

Just an observation.

Well that makes it more interesting in a way. JR might be thinking it gives him a few months to look over what he has, knowing help is on the way. Still, would be odd trading for an injured player if you are not already pretty set.

But a trade for a top 6 guy really only makes sense if we don't give up a top 6 guy, so any "star" would have to be a dman, with the Ruutu exception perhaps.

The notion of trading Pitkanen for someone's top line winger or a dang good center is really what i favor. I know some would think that nuts since Pitkanen is still a pretty dang good defenseman, but that's just me.

I don't think Pitkanen has a no trade, just think after he took a cut to stay here, JR isn't the type to ship him somewhere he doesn't want to be. He probably has at least a short term kind of practical no trade clause in theory.

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There just isn't one scenario that makes sense for a trade between the Canucks and Canes right now. The only thing they need, given Burrows is a question mark, is a right wing. The only thing we could likely offer in the "star" category, would be Ruutu, if you consider him a star, which leaves us with another gaping hole on top of the one we have at center. No way the Nucks give up a 73-point guy like Kesler.

This one's terrible, even by Eklund's standards. Why can't these bloggers do enough background work to at least post a rumor that seems plausible? That's my big problem with these guys.

It is a fun fantasy trade scenario, though, if your looking to pass the time with that sort of thing.

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Well that makes it more interesting in a way. JR might be thinking it gives him a few months to look over what he has, knowing help is on the way. Still, would be odd trading for an injured player if you are not already pretty set.

But a trade for a top 6 guy really only makes sense if we don't give up a top 6 guy, so any "star" would have to be a dman, with the Ruutu exception perhaps.

The notion of trading Pitkanen for someone's top line winger or a dang good center is really what i favor. I know some would think that nuts since Pitkanen is still a pretty dang good defenseman, but that's just me.

I don't think Pitkanen has a no trade, just think after he took a cut to stay here, JR isn't the type to ship him somewhere he doesn't want to be. He probably has at least a short term kind of practical no trade clause in theory.

I just had a thought... an expert speculative thought, of course. :-)

What if this is a 3-way deal with EDM, VAN and us? I believe VAN is actually without the services of both Burrows and Kesler to start the season. Didn't Kesler also have some sort of surgery for an injury he suffered in the playoffs? I could be mis-remembering. But I think at least one of them if not both are out for the start of the season.

So... let's say Vancouver needs a top-6 guy. Let's say they're interested in Ruutu. However, the only things they have coming back are d-men, and we have too many of those. Now, EDM wants d-men and can move Hemsky. So we turn around and trade the d-man we get from VAN for Hemsky. Essentially a Ruutu for Hemsky trade.

Some might say: why doesn't VAN just deal with EDM? I think the answer is that Ruutu is a little tougher, more of a hitter, than Hemsky, and can play both wing and C. As was seen in the Finals, the Canucks could use a winger like Ruutu on the line with the Sedins to help protect them, because they are skill players, not hitters. And Burrows could slide back to 2nd line, because while he's an agitator, I'm not sure anyone thinks a biter is the best protector for your two best skilled players.

EDM doesn't want Ruutu, because then they have the same thing they have today, a winger on the last year of his deal who's unlikely to re-sign in EDM. But presumably they get a d-man out of it.

Now, if this is the scenario, I'm not sure how I feel about it. BUT... much as I love Ruutu ... much as I'd hate to lose him... Hemsky is a legit scoring 1st line winger for Staal, Sutter could move up to 2nd line center, Brent could conceivably move up to 3rd line shutdown center and leave a spot for Other Sutter, Mats, etc. as a 4th line center.

Here's the thing: Ruutu is making $4.4M this year, though his cap hit is $3.8M. Are we going to re-sign him at th $4M+ (maybe approaching $5M) that he's likely going to ask for? Because if not, then I see getting something for him now as being a possible scenario that JR could pursue.

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Well, forget everything I said about Burrows. :blush: Witchking is right, it's Kesler who had surgery, not Burrows. Kesler had to have hip surgery, and is out until November or December. I guess I was remembering Burrows from last year when he hurt his shoulder.

Regardless, nothing seems to make any sense to me, if you are talking about star players. But I have to hand it to Withcking, that's a sneaky scenario. :lol: Wouldn't we have the same situation with Hemsky as Ruutu though, with respect to signing him on an expiring contract?

Edited by coastal_caniac

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Regardless, nothing seems to make any sense to me, if you are talking about star players.

It looks like Eklund is stretching for something to discuss as much as we are.

LaRose straight up for Kesler.

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So you are the real Hardy Soup dude.

My dart board works as well as theirs.

After the LaRose/Kesler deal, I'm shipping out Tlusty and Harrison to Nashville for Shea Webber. Why is this so hard? Mark it a sd(5).

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The Canes should trade a combination of Skinner, Ruutu , Ponikarovsky , Boychuk , and Allen for Jordan Staal , Chris Stewart , and Olli Jokinen. Our top two lines could be Jokinen - Staal - Stewart , Jokinen - Staal - Stewart. Not only would this confuse the competition but those would be two great lines.

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The Canes should trade a combination of Skinner, Ruutu , Ponikarovsky , Boychuk , and Allen for Jordan Staal , Chris Stewart , and Olli Jokinen. Our top two lines could be Jokinen - Staal - Stewart , Jokinen - Staal - Stewart. Not only would this confuse the competition but those would be two great lines.

Then we could have a 3rd line of Sutter - Sutter - Sutter!

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Maybe it is Hamhuis for Pitkanen or something like that, i.e. more of a shutdown guy for more of a puck moving D-man. Could be the thought here.

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