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If we let  Skinner go, he goes and  scores 30.. bet ya anything on that....

 

So what? He's not doing it HERE. Same for E and J and even, if he somehow "found" his game again, Semin.

 

My point is that there comes a time when you stop worrying about what someone might do somewhere else and cut the cord. I think that time has come, and it's no secret what a huge fan of Skinner I am (the others, not so much). But I think any clear-eyed assessment of what players brought to the table this year, when to a man they were on notice that they would be evaluated and their place on this team was on the line, shows that everyone BUT those four players answered the bell. So the brain trust has a big decision to make: Do they stand by their words and reward the 16 players who left it all out there every night, or do they let the four who didn't spoil the brew?

 

I'm no longer interested in what players shoulda coulda woulda done, or what they might do somewhere else. It only takes one look at what other teams have achieved this year (Ottawa, Calgary, Winnipeg) with similarly unremarkable lineups. There is no player on any of those teams who we could not pit against one of ours and conclude they have comparable skills sets. 

 

The difference is heart, and our top-four salaried skaters went out, night after night, all season long, and showed none.

Edited by top-shelf-1

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I think we've done exit interviews at the end of every season, many of which are posted here at the site, and it's always the same-old same-old.

 

"Well, we have to do better." Really?

 

"Well, it was tough with all those injuries, but if you look at our record the second half, I think we made strides." Truly?

 

"I think if everybody can stay healthy, next year will be a different story." SERIOUSLY??!!

 

Same #$%@&%, different season.

 

I'm squarely in the blow-it-up camp. It's time to lose all the S's: Staal, Staal, Semin, and Skinner. Take those dollars and bring in kids with the same kind of heart that the other 16 guys have shown all year. That includes the entire fourth line, Cam, Khudo, Lindy, Rask, Gerbs, Terry, Faulk, Hainsey, Liles, Lowe (yes, Lowe, on the strength of ONE game, and more specifically one terrific fight), Bellemore, Murphy, and Jordan. Give Faulk the C, McClement and Rask A's, and let's get on the road to a winning culture, already.  

 

I guess the question would be A. Will the Staals allow it. B. What we get in return. If Francis compiles draft picks mostly it will lead to the question: can you get a winning culture if you'r losing all the time? Because that group above, without some reinforcements will lose a lot. That is one way to go, keep getting high draft picks. If Francis can get a few NHL top 6 and top 9 and an NHL defenseman and use some of that cap space for one or two key UFA's? Never know, could work.

 

If E, especially, will waive the NTC, and if E is not in the long term plans, then we are better at least getting something for him. On Skinner, again, what is the return? His stock has to be at a low now. We don't need cap space, so moving him has to return something.

 

I'm not against the blow up, but RF needs to get return. Just getting a team of sub $1 million/year players that have heart? Well that works in movies and one year of Olympic history.

 

Again, if he goes blow up, must get good return. I haven't gotten the "we're blowing it up" vibe, but then again, it would probably not be out there till after the season. I do get the "Semin"{ is gone vibe though. My guess, he's the fall guy, and only him.

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In case no one has heard, LA Kings have been eliminated from the playoffs with their loss last night at Calgary, so no 1st round pick this year from them.

 

Our record this season:

without Jordan

10-23-4    (24pts)
with Jordan

20-17-7    (47pts)

 

Can't really get a vibe as to what Peters/Francis will do with this team. Semin will probably be gone.

Maybe I'm reading too much into this, but from the sound of the post-game interview last night between Forslund and Ward, it almost sounds like Cam may not be back next season. The tone sounded to me like, "You've done great this season; hope you have a great career, somewhere else"

Edited by hopper915

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Hopper, I caught part of that interview too, and I sensed a real sadness in Wardo, at times close to tears!! Wondering if anyone else saw that? Is the writing on the wall?

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Paul Maurice has now made the playoffs before the Canes have.  What a great coach!  While I do think he needed to be fired he is still a really good coach.  He made the playoffs with some really bad teams over the years.

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Paul Maurice has now made the playoffs before the Canes have.  What a great coach!  While I do think he needed to be fired he is still a really good coach.  He made the playoffs with some really bad teams over the years.

 

If you say so.

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if I say so?  I know so.  Look at the talent he has had to work with.  Especially when the Canes first got to Greensboro.  Look at the team he made the playoffs with on the west coast.  It's not like the Jets are stock full of top end talent.  Everyone claims they are happy with Peters.  Meanwhile we finished as the 5th worst team in the NHL.  I feel that losing has become acceptable in our culture since that's what we're used to. Let's see how Peters does next season.  If it is another bottom 5 finish then bye bye.

Edited by bluedevil58

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if I say so?  I know so.  Look at the talent he has had to work with.  Especially when the Canes first got to Greensboro.  Look at the team he made the playoffs with on the west coast.  It's not like the Jets are stock full of top end talent.

 

If you say so.

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Hopper, I caught part of that interview too, and I sensed a real sadness in Wardo, at times close to tears!! Wondering if anyone else saw that? Is the writing on the wall?

 

You gotta wonder...  It was weird.  I'm hoping it was just end of season feelings.

 

There was something said off-camera to John and Tripp and they uncomfortably laughed too.  Oh, and talking about Ward-o's Western Canadian roots was interesting...

 

You get a feeling that they know something we don't.  But what that is, I cannot imagine since there are tampering rules.  Right?  Right...

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As to Cam, Just would be so strange for that to have been predetermined at this point.

As with everything else it all comes down to return. Cam has been one of the few positives of this year. I guess it comes down to whether Francis thinks we can win next year or not. If he thinks next year is another miss, it might make sense, if not, trading cam does not make much sense.

I guess the other factor would be cam himself. If he has made it clear that he needs a change of scenery after this year we may be better off to get something than nothing. Maybe if Cam had made such a indication to Francis then this would be somewhat predetermined.

Still, seems odd.

Edited by remkin

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So what? He's not doing it HERE. Same for E and J and even, if he somehow "found" his game again, Semin.

 

My point is that there comes a time when you stop worrying about what someone might do somewhere else and cut the cord. I think that time has come, and it's no secret what a huge fan of Skinner I am (the others, not so much). But I think any clear-eyed assessment of what players brought to the table this year, when to a man they were on notice that they would be evaluated and their place on this team was on the line, shows that everyone BUT those four players answered the bell. So the brain trust has a big decision to make: Do they stand by their words and reward the 16 players who left it all out there every night, or do they let the four who didn't spoil the brew?

 

I'm no longer interested in what players shoulda coulda woulda done, or what they might do somewhere else. It only takes one look at what other teams have achieved this year (Ottawa, Calgary, Winnipeg) with similarly unremarkable lineups. There is no player on any of those teams who we could not pit against one of ours and conclude they have comparable skills sets. 

 

The difference is heart, and our top-four salaried skaters went out, night after night, all season long, and showed none.    true, im just saying most guys THAT leave here, play very well...  So i guess they fit the system of the new team better...  Just  throwing it out there... If he is in the east, it will come back to haunts us, but i get your point top shelf..

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I guess the question would be A. Will the Staals allow it. B. What we get in return. If Francis compiles draft picks mostly it will lead to the question: can you get a winning culture if you'r losing all the time? Because that group above, without some reinforcements will lose a lot. That is one way to go, keep getting high draft picks. If Francis can get a few NHL top 6 and top 9 and an NHL defenseman and use some of that cap space for one or two key UFA's? Never know, could work.

 

If E, especially, will waive the NTC, and if E is not in the long term plans, then we are better at least getting something for him. On Skinner, again, what is the return? His stock has to be at a low now. We don't need cap space, so moving him has to return something.

 

I'm not against the blow up, but RF needs to get return. Just getting a team of sub $1 million/year players that have heart? Well that works in movies and one year of Olympic history.

 

Again, if he goes blow up, must get good return. I haven't gotten the "we're blowing it up" vibe, but then again, it would probably not be out there till after the season. I do get the "Semin"{ is gone vibe though. My guess, he's the fall guy, and only him.

I never said we go get a slew of million-dollar nobodies. But getting the ridiculous cost of J, E and Semin off the books - return or not - would allow us to get FIVE 3-million dollar guys (Justin Williams is a $3 million guy) - and that's just on what we're paying E and J. Or we pick up JWilly and Patrick Sharp (9.5 million together) and still have $$ left to pick up guys like Nesty and Malone.  Get something back if possible, of course; it saves a step and lets the departing save some face. But ultimately it's the $26 million of cap space I want back. 

 

I think Skinner is imminently marketable to a team that believes it can protect him. My hope, honestly, is that he hangs 'em up at the end of this season for his own health. But if not and we wanted to move him, pretty much any Western conference team could offer him protection and endless looks, because over there they play actual ice hockey, not this pantywaist version of whatever-it-is that goes down most nights in the East.

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I never said we go get a slew of million-dollar nobodies. But getting the ridiculous cost of J, E and Semin off the books - return or not - would allow us to get FIVE 3-million dollar guys (Justin Williams is a $3 million guy) - and that's just on what we're paying E and J. Or we pick up JWilly and Patrick Sharp (9.5 million together) and still have $$ left to pick up guys like Nesty and Malone.  Get something back if possible, of course; it saves a step and lets the departing save some face. But ultimately it's the $26 million of cap space I want back. 

 

I think Skinner is imminently marketable to a team that believes it can protect him. My hope, honestly, is that he hangs 'em up at the end of this season for his own health. But if not and we wanted to move him, pretty much any Western conference team could offer him protection and endless looks, because over there they play actual ice hockey, not this pantywaist version of whatever-it-is that goes down most nights in the East.

 

If we just get them off the books, we still have to find those $3 million guys in UFA. They have to want to come here.

 

If we get something back in trade besides picks, then that could be such a guy or two. You may be saying that though. I'm assuming you are thinking we pick up a couple of those $3 million guys in the trades that get the salary off the books?

 

I have seen Skinner come back from an offseason really on fire, so I wonder about selling low now. If a Western team would offer us some version of a decent return, I would probably do it, mainly because of the concussions, and the style not fitting. In the right situation, with no more concussions Skinner could push 40 goals. But he might give 30 back on the d side. 

 

I'd really miss the old Skinner and considering how young he is that's saying something, but he is so unconventional. 

 

Still, we can't have a #7 pick turn into minimal return either. There has to be return or we are better off taking our chances with him.

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We have become a fan base that accepts mediocrity. Our team has been handcuffed by the long term, big dollar, NTC contracts handed out after the Stanley Cup win to young players with short resumes. The management pinned their hopes on " potential " and a short blip on the peak. Instead of building a winning culture the GM in an ego snit fired the coach and brought back the inconsistency that plagued us in the past. Some good seasons, some bad, but not what you build a long term winning culture with. As a side note, Paul Maurice reminds me of Lindy Ruff, a good coach who has some successes but just can"t reach the top. Then our GM sold the idea that the new guys were going bring back the Cup, because they were young and had tasted the euphoria that would drive them to further success. Now we are reduced to cheering our star captain having a late season spurt to crawl over the 50 point mark, and anxiously anticipate the final game of the season to see if our number one goalie will get to the .500 mark.  Our star once had a 100 point season, and the problem with  .500 goalie in the NHL is the phantom overtime losses, they are games played with one point awarded, but not counted in either the win or loss columns. It sounds more like a selling point for agents rather than something to be proud of.

 

The only way Eric and Cam come anyway near their current contracts would be with a different team. There are ways to make NTC player so miserable that they beg for a trade. You just have to accept the reality that some players are not destined to be here forever. Time to move on became evident when the fourth line became the best line we had on any given night. I bought into the excitement of the 16 who played like they wanted prove the worth of their contracts one night when Staal, Staal, and Gerbe were on the same line, and it was Gerbe who brought the muscle of checks and skate speed. I'd rather watch the " no names " than the so called "stars "

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Semin definitely needs to go. I'm not great at watching individual players, but when I have tried to watch him, he looks completely disinterested. PK needs to suck it up and pay the buyout or waive him and send him to Charlotte next year. Riding buses long enough will either light a fire under him and prod him to play his A game, or (hopefully) cause him to break his contract and head back to Russia.

Eric I have hope for. Finally, he is in a contract year, which will hopefully cause him to show up before mid-January. Even though he made $9 million or whatever this year, I think his cap hit on the last contract was maybe a little over $7 million. No way is anyone going to pay him that kind of $ going forward based on his performance the last few years.

I would like to see us trade Skinner, hopefully to bring back a potential top-pairing defenseman. I don't see where else we are going to find one that is NHL ready. No doubt he could return to form as a sniper, but he has other weaknesses that we can live without. I agree that it would be great to trade him to a Western Conference team we don't have to fight for a playoff spot. If he lands somewhere he can score a ton, great; I don't see that happening here.

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I'll say this...

If Semin, E. Staal, and Skinner were in the Philadelphia market, they would be getting absolutely crucified, and rightly so.

I know the Philly fans and media are (throw in your choice of negative descriptor), but often times I feel this market is too nice, or too forgiving.

There is simply no defending guys like Semin, E. Staal, or Skinner, especially when considering their salaries.

In other markets the media would be on these guys like flies on...jello.

But here they seem to get a pass or a veiled negative comment. The players are allowed to spit out the normal lines/coach/player speak instead of facing the real difficult questions/scrutiny.

Players here are babied and protected. Hopefully that changes somewhat in the future.

Don't get me wrong, I like the "good guys" perception this organization has, and I like how the fans seem to become attached to and support their players.

Often times though, I just think it goes too far and is a hindrance to our success.

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If anybody thinks Semin is going to walk away from his millions to go back to Russia and the KHL, just google "KHL financial problems" and see what you think.  Here is one thing at random...http://www.thehockeynews.com/blog/khler-jeff-glass-players-are-getting-hosed-right-now/

 

The KHL isn't the destination it was a couple of years ago due to the weakness of the ruble.  Riding the bus in Charlotte for $7 mil a year isn't all that bad in comparison.  A buyout or the return of an equally bad contract is the only solution.

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If anybody thinks Semin is going to walk away from his millions to go back to Russia and the KHL, just google "KHL financial problems" and see what you think.  Here is one thing at random...http://www.thehockeynews.com/blog/khler-jeff-glass-players-are-getting-hosed-right-now/

 

The KHL isn't the destination it was a couple of years ago due to the weakness of the ruble.  Riding the bus in Charlotte for $7 mil a year isn't all that bad in comparison.  A buyout or the return of an equally bad contract is the only solution.

Would we have to pay if he was kidnapped by aliens? :twilight-zone:

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Kyrule.  But this is not Philadelphia.  I get your point.  However, if all my fellow fans turned into <you know whats>, I'm done here.

 

That said, a little more media scrutiny is certainly in order.

Edited by wxray1

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If we just get them off the books, we still have to find those $3 million guys in UFA. They have to want to come here.

 

If we get something back in trade besides picks, then that could be such a guy or two. You may be saying that though. I'm assuming you are thinking we pick up a couple of those $3 million guys in the trades that get the salary off the books?

 

I have seen Skinner come back from an offseason really on fire, so I wonder about selling low now. If a Western team would offer us some version of a decent return, I would probably do it, mainly because of the concussions, and the style not fitting. In the right situation, with no more concussions Skinner could push 40 goals. But he might give 30 back on the d side. 

 

I'd really miss the old Skinner and considering how young he is that's saying something, but he is so unconventional. 

 

Still, we can't have a #7 pick turn into minimal return either. There has to be return or we are better off taking our chances with him.

Well, everyone here knows how I feel about Skinner. He's a rare talent who, either by learning to protect himself or having teammates who step up for him, can be a real game-changer. As you well know, Rem, I advocated most of the season for keeping all our youth together (including J Staal) and losing Eric and Alex as the best way to build a team with an identity that enables them to look back as they improve and feel like like they did it together. I think Skinner can and should be a part of that, but if that is not possible, so be it. That said, if we give him up and keep Eric, it will pretty much seal for me that the only thing that has really changed in the GM's office is the name on the door.

 

Yes, I'd like to get player returns for Eric, but realistically, if a team is taking all his salary that's a return in itself, in the form of money to go out and get guys. If we are retaining some salary then absolutely, we need a top-six guy coming back. But I'm fine with either scenario.

 

All of this being said, my gut (and RF's public comments) tell me he has drunk the Eric Staal Kool-Aid and will ride it out at least one more season. If E is his usual slow-starting self next year and the Canes are out of the running for the playoffs by the TD, he's (hopefully) gone - and that would be a feather in RF's cap, IMO. Not as organization-changing as dealing him RIGHT NOW, but at least an acknowledgment that on-ice leadership is non-existent. If E somehow lights it up early next year, though, the news could get really bad, b/c RF will face pressure to re-up him and can peddle doing so as a good thing - even though it would really do nothing more than saddle us with crummy on-ice leadership for x more years, until E decides to hang 'em up.

 

I hate to sound this resigned to such a scenario, but it is what it is. I truly believe Eric Staal can dominate when he wants to, and that he is only slightly less lazy than Alex Semin. I really do. So my fear is that he will come out gangbusters next year, secure his next contract, and then it'll be more of the same. There is just too big of a sample size at this point to reasonably believe anything else, at least for me. So (again, for me) unless and until Ronnie does the admittedly very hard thing he must do - end the era of Eric - I believe the prospects of this team producing markedly different results with Eric on the roster - in any role - are slim and none.

Edited by top-shelf-1

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Kyrule.  But this is not Philadelphia.  I get your point.  However, if all my fellow fans turned into <you know whats>, I'm done here.

 

That said, a little more media scrutiny is certainly in order.

Exactly, that is my point.

I would never want us to become like Philly, I would be done as well.

We just need to be a little less loveable, huggable Carolina that babies/protects it's players and whose media plays softball.

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I'll say this...

If Semin, E. Staal, and Skinner were in the Philadelphia market, they would be getting absolutely crucified, and rightly so.

I know the Philly fans and media are (throw in your choice of negative descriptor), but often times I feel this market is too nice, or too forgiving.

There is simply no defending guys like Semin, E. Staal, or Skinner, especially when considering their salaries.

 

Yup - as a former Philly fan, I can absolutely attest to this. They'd have all been run out of town by the All-Star break.

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It's the media though. I mean this is the Cane's own website and we skewer guys all the time.

 

Guys get less love in here than the independent media.

 

To be fair the fans are easy too. But I agree, if we become of all places Philly? Forget it. At some point we are adults here at least.

 

Brindy said it at his lunch: this is about the easiest place to play. If a player feels unfairly put upon here, he shouldn't be in the league.

 

 

I will say this though. We need to find guys that bring the work ethic, because we fans aren't going to whip them.

 

Still it's our thing. Need to have a thing. Let Buffalo, Philly, Boston, fans be obnoxious juvenile troglodytes. We tailgate and love our team. If they win, we are one of the loudest houses in the land. If they lose? They get the morons cheering against them in their own house. See, it works out. We let the troglodytes do the work for us. (Sorry, you two shirt wearing Canes fans, and YES I know they are not ALL troglodytes, but I'm making a point here).

Edited by remkin

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Exactly, that is my point.

I would never want us to become like Philly, I would be done as well.

We just need to be a little less loveable, huggable Carolina that babies/protects it's players and whose media plays softball.

Yup. 

 

Sometime in the years between the Cup and 09, I called out many on this board as members of the "Sunshine Lollipops and Rainbows Brigade," for their apparently bottomless ability to find the "positives" in what was just absolutely abysmal play. Holy #$@%^$, was I trashed. "You're not a fan if you criticize the team." "Stick a fork in fork stickers!" (I had also posted, maybe in late February or maybe March, "Stick a fork in us, we're done." We were not mathematically out of it, but it was already clear the playoffs were not in our future.)

 

I have my own theory about the reluctance, particularly of native Raleighites, to call out their teams: It's tied to college hoops. First is the avoidance - and you see this pretty much nationwide - of calling out any college player's poor play. Second is the fact that, here in Raleigh, college players ARE THE ONLY KIND THEY'VE HAD forever, before the Canes. Put these two together, throw in a dash of Southern hospitality, and you've got a local fan base that is not going to take kindly to pointing out crappy play - especially when the crappy player's name is on the $300 jersey they're sporting.

 

But I think gradually things are changing. The Canes long playoff drought combined with rising ticket prices are (finally) leading even many locals to ask *edit*? All I can say - again, coming from Philly - is WHAT TOOK YOU SO LONG??!! :lol: I agree we cannot and should not become Philly - but we must be willing to express our disgust and make it clear that it's tough to be a fan when you've got little to CHEER about!

Edited by top-shelf-1

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It's the media though. I mean this is the Cane's own website and we skewer guys all the time.

 

Guys get less love in here than the independent media.

Rem, it's hard to describe without experiencing it. This place is like the land of unicorns and lollipops compared to others.

The fans are much more brutal than here. The media puts guys down and puts constant pressure on under-performing players, essentially putting them under a microscope.

Players are essentially run out of town because the big market teams can flex that kind of muscle/exert that kind of pressure.

Smaller market teams have a harder time fixing their mistakes so they have to tread a little lighter. They have to be a little more upbeat (even if it isn't warranted) to try to keep the fan-base hopeful.

I guess what I'm saying is that I think that Carolina has grown enough as an organization, and it's fan-base is knowledgable enough that we could start acting like a bigger market/more established franchise.

Constantly being positive and avoiding the hard questions is fine early on when you are trying to build up optimistic fans, but eventually it gets old, and almost insulting as it becomes obvious that it is a media ploy tailored toward the casual fan.

I want under-performing players to feel the heat. I want players to fear/respect the organization.

I just don't think that is the case here. I think some players think they are above the organization or are too comfortable. I think others think they can "hide" here a little because it's just Carolina and nobody is really watching.

People here have described it as the "country club" atmosphere that exists here when referring to management, but I would like to see that change and extend even further (the fans, the media, etc.) so that players actually feel some pressure to perform.

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