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But now I don't think anything else will happen. Why would we trade assets (or pick up a bad contract) from one of the cap constrained teams when we could have instead presumably added a good player at a reasonable from the UFA market?

 

I wouldn't be surprised in Loktionov is still a possibility, the Canes just waiting till after he's healed to make an offer.

 

I would think it would need to be a very good player for us to give up a player, prospect or future(s).  We don't have the depth to move a a lot of assets. We also seem to be in a restructuring and transition year with all the one-year contracts we have been giving out combined with a couple of our big boy contracts ending in a couple of seasons. Still if a legitimate top 6 is available and the contract isn't  long term it might be worth the risk.

 

I think the Loktionov ship has sailed. He got hurt, rumors had him considering the KHL, Then again you never know .

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We put our money into our blue line as well as adding physical defensive forwardd. I feel we did the best that we could have done given our self imposed cap.

 

You may well be right. I still think we have room for another move but I'm not sure we will make one

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On LaRose: We could get a pretty good idea where he stands from the Canes perspective if we knew a bit more about his contract with CHA.

 

Both Boychuk and Terry were signed by the Canes and not the Checkers.  And although they have 2-way contracts, their AHL salaries are $200k and $300k, respectively.  Unless CHA is paying Chad something close to those numbers I think it's pretty clear that his future most likely lies in Charlotte, not Raleigh. 

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Right now the roster has 11 forwards and 7 defensemen, with McGinn, Boychuk, Terry not listed and I think one of that group will be on the team come Oct. Dwyer is an interesting consideration...a lot like Pattick Eaves and Peters may want that skill set but small and tough to really see him getting anything other than 4th line minutes and even more tough to see getting much in return via trade.

I could see a situation where McGinn and/or Boychuck make the roster and we make a like move Bellemore and Dwyer plus a pick to Philly (who will be cap compliant when Pronger goes on LTIR) or Chicago for a D. I don't think we have enough tradeable assets to acquire a legit top 6 guy.

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Based on Boychuk leading the AHL in goals he deserves a full time shot on the Canes; he needs linemate consistency instead of the call up crap he went through last year and didn't know who he would even be paired with game to game.  They gave Bowman a full year with the big team and he proved like Zac Dalpe before him that he doesn't have it to be a contributor.  Boychuk by leading the AHL in goals deserves a full season to show what he's got.  If he doesn't shine then move him out of the organization.  I'm betting that he can score at least 15 in a full year on the big team.  Definately has earned a full time slot with a minimum of 13-15 min a game on the third line.

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Speaking of Bowman, has anybody heard anything on his status?  I wonder if he will be another one of our alumni that goes jobless in the NHL once no longer a Cane.

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About the only forward of any note left in FA is Penner. I've seen him linked to a lot of teams but not us. He's big and could park it in front of the net. He's slow though. Seems like he might be worth a shot at the right price, but he may not be intresested either.

 

It does appear that the plan is to get the band back together one last time to give them one more shot to either show that they can get it done or at least get one or two to up their trade value.

 

Meanwhile it does look like the plan also includes a chance for Boychuk or others to step up.

 

Perhaps, we watch for a cap-challenged team to offer a deal, but I do get the feeling that we start with the same band.

Edited by remkin

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Given the options, it is probably the best move though. I only wonder if we could have added that one more piece we want but don't seem to get from free agency.

 

But on the core, the only guys with trade value are the guys not to trade. So the options: make a terrible trade just to do something, or try a new coach and hope that things fall into place, then break it up if it starts bad where hopefully at least one guy has upped his trade value and can be moved.

 

I honestly don't buy the, let's let it collapse and pick high in a really good draft year theory. More of not having a lot of good options, and having a team that on paper should be a lot better, and a touch of "lets give a couple of guys in the minors a shot and take stock of what we have".

 

So we get round 3 for this basic core.

 

Round One: Lockout year: bad result, good excuses.

Round Two: Last year: bad result, no good excuses. Hopefully coaching.

Round Three: Well there is more talent on this team than either of the first rounds showed, but will Peters be able to bring it out?

 

It seems crazy to think that the third time's a charm, but it's not crazy.

Still, a lot of guys will have to get their games together at once.

Could happen though.

Edited by remkin

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It's round 6 for me and I'd personally like to see the people's elbow hit this roster.

 

We're on round 6 because JR refused to rebuild and with good reason. Who knows if this fanbase would come out on the other side. I hope Ronnie isn't afraid of the same if this season proves this basic core won't work.

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If the Canes fold like a lawnchair this season as they have done the past five it will be shyza tsunami of season ticket holders heading for the exits. 

 

Also, Eric better have his core muscles sorted out before the season begins.  If he doesn't show $9m worth of passion, playmaking and scoring in the first 10 games out of the gate then stand by 'cause there will be some serious hate and discontent from the Canes faithful.

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We're on round 6 because JR refused to rebuild and with good reason. Who knows if this fanbase would come out on the other side. I hope Ronnie isn't afraid of the same if this season proves this basic core won't work.

 

I understand that reasoning, but I still think he believed in his core group.  I think he was sure that the team would have been good except for (insert excuse de' jour).

 

My main issue with JR's roster moves was his lack of realizing when the Canes were on the outside looking in at the trade deadline and making trades to shore up the future.  For example, what would Gleason and Ruutu brought at the end of their last deals?  You wouldn't know it now, but they would have been 2 of the more highly sought after rentals at the time.  Instead, JR re-signed them.  He could have rented them out and still brought them back if wanted.  It's one thing to not dump everybody because of fear of losing the fanbase.  It's another to not be able to realize that the team is out of the hunt and it's time to look forward.  The freakin' fanbase is smart enough to know when the season is a dud.  We usually know when we pull the Thanksgiving turkeys out of the freezer to thaw.

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Well I'm talking about now mainly. Semin, J, Skinner and most of the current defense doesn't go back much past the lockout year.

 

Of course Ward/E. the ultra core of years gone by is on round 8, (though it's kind of hard to discount the one run to the ECF in there...). There are two flashes with the ultra core: the cup and the ECF run that do suggest something is possible.

 

But either way, my main point is the age old question of what do you do at this point if you are Ron Francis? You want to make some deep changes, but unless you want to trade Faulk, Skinner or Lindholm, you will get Jack and Squat for your assets. What do you do? 

 

As we all know, just getting cap space is like a single guy freeing up your Friday. It doesn't mean that the super models will be lining up to go out with you. 

 

So one approach. Just have a fire sale. Get almost nothing back. Hopefully at least some first round draft picks and cap space and prepare to flat out stink for at least 4 more years. 

 

Other approach. Give this core one more chance with a new coach and hope that some young guns are ready to step up.

 

This seems crazy to a lot of long time fans. I get that. Same thing different result, insanity and all that.

 

 

But it is not crazy. If Peters can fix the PP, and we get decent goaltending, we are there. 

 

If E., J. Semin, and Tlusty just get back to average years and we get the above...we are there.

 

I know I said that last year...the if did not happen...but we are talking average not career years.

 

 

Now history would cast some doubt on this, but we do have a new coach. Semin has a new wrist. Linholm and hopefully Murphy can up their contributions....

 

But in the end it makes more sense to try one more time than to give away assets. If things start badly....well I guess they'll be more appetite for destruction. If at least one guy (Ward, pick a Staal, Semin, Tlusty, can up their trade value, at least a move can be made).

 

I guess it is the least bad option.

Edited by remkin

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It's one thing to refuse to rebuild, it's quite another to "restructure" by shuffling the deck chairs around. 

 

Since all the guys are right there at the Country Club they are not inconvenienced too much when the guy comes by to sweep up under their chairs.  Just pick up your cocktail and go sit by the pool for awhile.

 

If we would have began a rebuild when Ruutu and Gleason's contracts were up we may not be talking about this.  Instead it's the same old "if" this and "if" that crap we might make the playoffs (not from our board, in general).

 

I go to a lot of hockey games, practices, pre-game skates, etc.  I haven't talked to one Canes regular that wouldn't have had the patience enough to hang in there if there was significant progress being made.  Canes regulars, the paying customers, are leaving because the organization is stagnant in it's thinking.

 

Hopefully that's changing but you have to wonder when we add a washed up retread defenseman to an already pretty poor blueline while getting spoon-fed the same old we like our group bs.

 

This team will only go as far as the defense and goaltending will take us.

Edited by coastal_caniac

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We have so many variables, so many unknowns it is difficult for me to believe that the change of coaching staff will be enough to make a difference this season. If healthy, the team should be better then last season but how much better I'm not sure.

 

I think the key to success will sit with Francis. A quick evaluation and the ability to make changes early in the season will be important. If the team isn't going and going strong by Thanksgiving changes will need to be made then. I don't think we can wait until a trade deadline to attempt another quick fix. Easier said then done but necessary.

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It's one thing to refuse to rebuild, it's quite another to "restructure" by shuffling the deck chairs around. 

 

Since all the guys are right there at the Country Club they are not inconvenienced too much when the guy comes by to sweep up under their chairs.  Just pick up your cocktail and go sit by the pool for awhile.

 

If we would have began a rebuild when Ruutu and Gleason's contracts were up we may not be talking about this.  Instead it's the same old "if" this and "if" that crap we might make the playoffs.

 

I go to a lot of hockey games.  I haven't talked to one Canes regular that wouldn't have had the patience enough to hang in there if there was significant progress being made.  Canes regulars are leaving because the organization is stagnant in it's thinking.

 

Hopefully that's changing but you have to wonder when we add a washed up retread defenseman to an already pretty poor blueline while getting spoon-fed the same old we like our group bs.

Just to play devil's advocate....

 

The only teams that don't have "ifs this and that", are the elite teams: Boston, Chicago, LA, etc. Don't get me wrong, love for that to be us, but at least 2/3 of the league lives on ifs and if thens to some extent. Just look at all the teams with a playoff shot near the end. 

 

You have more foresight than me on those two deals (Gleason and Ruutu) I recall both of those signings were jump for joy signings around here. There was a lot of angst that we'd just lose them both and get nothing back. Ruutu was a very effective player at that point and Gleason was one of our top dmen. As it turned out, you are right, those guys both faded fast, but at least Ruutu, was mostly because of his bum hips. If JR had known that and traded them it would have been two preternaturally good moves as it turned out.

 

But the real question, is what would you do now? Would you have given up our #7 pick just to let someone take Ward off our hands? Would you try to trade Eric against his NTC and brother in town to a team willing to give us???? Semin for a bag of teeth protectors? J? 

 

Would you move Skinner or Faulk? 

 

Are there any actual options right now that you would take differently with that same foresight that saw that Ruutu and Gleason would fizzle? 

 

I know I tend to get really optimistic this time of year. I'm a fan. Those who know this should realize that my "best of bad choices" is for me, pretty dour. This group let me down as much as anyone. I went out on a limb for them and took the hit for their lack of delivery. Now as I even lay out the chance that they might surprise I feel the twinge of "there he goes again". 

 

But sometimes no move is better than a bad move. Francis was left with four key overpaid, undervalued guys. Three of them have NTC's and two of them are brothers. One is so undervalued that there was an offer to steal our top draft pick just to take him off our hands. 

 

The obvious move was Ward. But it is a buyers goalie market and people don't see the Ward of a few years ago, they see the salary of today. 

 

What is the move we are not making right now? That would be better than one more shot at redemption for this much more talented that the sum of it's parts crew given the restrictions we have?

 

What is that move?

 

I think the current plan allows Francis to tell the core....understand that this is the last shot. If this doesn't work by around...I am going to have to make a move. 

 

Then if that happens, he will be empowered to do whatever it takes to make it happen.

Edited by remkin

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Bottom line on all the postulating is that you can't put a shine a s**t.  We'll know as will Ronnie what kind of team we have by T/Giving.  If it ain't good the only question will be is what is Ronnie prepared to do about it.  Especially so for Eric and Cam if one or both don't get out of the gate strong.

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Rem, JR could have moved Ruutu and Gleason for picks and then re-signed them as a UFA if he wanted to.  Part of the deal in managing a team at the deadline is...

 

A. Knowing if you are a contender or a pretender

and

2. Making the right moves as one or the other.

 

Standing pat while straddling the fence is never a good thing.

 

Yes, I think people were happy when those deals were done, but only because the deadline came and went and they were still sipping Mai Tai's on the party deck.  I won't argue the fact that Ronnie was dealt a poor hand.  He can play if for a while, but he can't go all in with a pair of 3's like JR did.  He has to know when to hold em, know when to fold em, know when to walk away, and know when to run.

Edited by super_dave_1

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Ever the optimist(guess you can tell from my posts), I just hate this feeling of "dread" that surrounds us this year. Honestly, you are all probably right and I am "tilting at the wind", but looking at every prognosticator"s posts, they all are giving us little chance to even get a sniff of playoffs this year!

 

Right now, it's hard not to harbor dour feelings toward JR, and the dismal mess that he left for his successor, any successor. I for one always gave him the benefit of the doubt when it came to his dealings, obviously not equipped to analyze that sort of thing.Also, as I've repeatedly explained, I much admired his so called "loyalty" to everyone of his players, frequently defending his "recycling" of many. Now I see the fallacy in my reasoning when one analyzes retrospectively. Sadly, it now appears that in order to progress to that hallowed position of being a consistent "contender", his unenviable successor, namely Ron Francis, likely will have to dismantle the entire operation.

 

Saying all of the above, which no more than parrots the thoughts of several before me, I do hold out ever so slim of the hope that with our biggies regaining some semblance of their effectiveness, and with new found guidance from a sterner task master, that despite every guru's pessimism for this season, we'll surprise?

 

The group has long debated the validity of the role "injury" played in this team's demise over the past 2 seasons(ie, the lockout year and this last). Several, and I think correctly so, like to point out "all teams have to contend with injuries". While this is immutable fact, I'd also like to suggest 2 additional factors for why I believe, and have always believed, that all injuries "are not equal".

 

!st, and I think there's little disagreement to this, it's rather obvious that this team has experienced almost complete failure with our reserves, for whatever reason? Either they have not been "groomed properly", were poorly deployed, or whatever, it seems that with rare exception and for only brief spurts, those call ups did not pick up the slack.

 

2nd, and I believe much more critical, this team suffered injuries to our most crucial players, and even more devastatingly, over the same period. Now, I am aware that many of you will call me out on this thought, and have several examples to back you up, but look at NYI just this last year when Tavares went out. They swooned! But think about it, I doubt ES was ever 100%, Semin with his apparent wrist issue, Both our primary and backup goalies, and Skinner.

 

My "koolaid" conclusion then is this, yes, this team has seemingly not made a big splash this off season, much to everyone's, and my, chagrin, but I honestly think that if we get some type of break from these confounded injuries, we will make some noise!

 

That's my story, and I'll cling to it until T'giving.

Edited by KJUNKANE

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2nd, and I believe much more critical, this team suffered injuries to our most crucial players, and even more devastatingly, over the same period. Now, I am aware that many of you will call me out on this thought, and have several examples to back you up, but look at NYI just this last year when Tavares went out. They swooned! But think about it, I doubt ES was ever 100%, Semin with his apparent wrist issue, Both our primary and backup goalies, and Skinner.

 

OK, I'll agree with that.  But here's where my thinking has changed. 

 

I used to think: "Dang injuries, next year will be better!"

 

Now I think: "Dang injuries will happen again, and again, and again."

 

So you think it will be different this year?  I don't think so.  I have a mathematical proof for you:

 

Given:

        Eric Staal

 

Prove:

        Another injury prone season

 

Result:

        Core Injury in Summer

        Surgery

        Promise to be "ready" by camp

 

     Q.E.D.

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I'm not sure with me its a question of optimism versus pessimism. Its more a question of uncertainty going into this season. I would have felt more comfortable or optimistic if we could have signed another top 6 or at least a potential top 6. Its not to say we haven't made some moves that could make us better. Its not that the coaching changes aren't a step in the right direction. For all I know this team could take the challenge and become one of the better teams in the league. I'm just having a hard time seeing it right now.

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Depth>Injuries.  Always will be.

 

That's where I am optimistic the biggest stride will be made.  

 

That has been a slow turning wheel in Raleigh, but at least now it's turning again.

 

I think it's going to take a couple of more years.

 

I could be wrong, and all the ifs are answered.  Yes, every team have those ifs, but every team isn't picking in the top-10 or so picks 3 years running.  Only the real crummy teams do that. 

 

I hope the changes in the front office and a new coaching staff can reignite something.  I really hope so.  If we don't make the playoffs, fine, just show me improvement and win home games. Fix the PP.  Don't let guys run over your goalie.  Quit dumping and chasing.  Work dadgum hard and for gosh sakes, stick up for the other guys on your team.

 

I'm tired of posting the same old thing, so I'll hang up and listen.

Edited by coastal_caniac

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Depth definitely is an issue.

 

The lock out year debacle was pretty much all about that to me. The injuries were massive, the injury issue was legit, half the defense and the goalie out, but the depth....not good.

 

Last year I just can't blame injuries. Yes, the top 2 goalies went down, and to the extent that a fixed consistant #1 goalie would have helped, maybe we pick 10 instead of 7. But Peters played great, then decent then a couple not so good, but the combined goalie play was not the problem. Other injuries seemed more like league average type thing.

 

Lack of depth last year was lack of regular scoring depth. When the big boys didn't produce, pretty much no one stepped up much.

 

The idea of work hard and don't dump and chase too much and play harder at home, and fix teh PP, and don't let guys run your goalie, might be fixable by the coach and a few key players (Gleason, etc) getting back to that a bit more.

 

I think it is very reasonable to be apprehensive about this year. While I can excuse the lockout year, I really can't excuse last year except to the extent that it was bad coaching. Injuries do not cut it as an excuse last year. Sorry PK, not buying that one. It was not injuries that made our PP stink out loud.

 

This same group is going to have to find something they didn't have last year. The fact that so many guys were so far off their usual production suggests it is possible that a new coach could fix it. The fact that they didn't get it done in the past suggests that they might fail again. I think both are reasonable guesses.

 

The fact that the media have us dead last, is to be expected. But the real chance for a surprise this year is much higher IMHO than people think. Doesn't mean it will happen this time, but it is not a snowball's chance king of thing. There is enough firepower. Fix that PP, and some of the other things on Coastal's list, and this group really could surprise.

 

Now I'm not about to write another manefesto about it, but the talent is there if the coach can get it to work hard and together.

Edited by remkin

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