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youngfan9886

The Positive Thread: Any Optimistic Nuggets of Positivity in the Gloom

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Well not quite as much gloom lately but...

 

JORDAN STAAL

 

Despite facing the toughest competition by far, and starting the most times in the defensive zone, by far he:

 

LEADS ENTIRE NHL in FACE OFF % (at least 300 faceoffs): 58.6%. Tops among top 100 face-off takers.

 

LEADS Canes in plus minus at plus 7, (plus 6 in last 5 games).

 

15 points in last 13 games (95 point pace for 82 game season)

20 points in last 23 games (71 point pace for 82 game season)

 

Vast majority of his points even strength.

 

Very nice, but hardly elite wingers on his line. Making them better.

 

The last 23 games, he has not only been worth his salary, but arguably underpaid.

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Jacob Slavin blocking shots.

 

Anyone else notice how much more often he does it compared to the rest of the D?  I thought that was the case so I took a look at the stats to see if I was right.  Turns out that Slavin blocks 36% more shots per 60 minutes played than the next highest Cane.

 

                      blocks/60 min  

Slavin                  5.95

Liles                    4.38

Hainsey               4.09

Pesce                  3.87

Jordan                 3.80

Hanifin                 3.50

Faulk                   2.45 

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This season exceeded my expectations in terms of results and consistent effort. Most of the games were exciting and competitive, plus I got to watch meaningful games for more than a few months. I give a lot of credit to the coaching staff and the players that bought-in/put forth the effort.

We have set ourselves up well financially to address our forwards (and possibly in net), and we have some great young players on the back-end who never quit and didn't "hit the wall" as most young players (especially defensemen) do.

The free agency period and the draft should be exciting times ahead.

If Skinner can keep the "on" switch on (and keep improving in terms of playing defense and using his line-mates/passing) going into next year that'll be huge.

Look at that, I posted Skinner's name in a positive thread......and a pig just flew by my window...

.

Edited by Kyrule

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Good points Krule, and good to bump this thread a bit.

 

Aside from your mention of Sknner, who has definitely become a positive, I'd point out Victor Rask.

 

I called for the breakouts of Lindy and Rask at the start of the year. Well, I got one right.

 

Despite all of the deserved attention to the positive of the arrival of Jordan Staal's offense, Victor Rask actually has more points than Jordan.

 

Rask has 47 points with 3 games to play, which projects him to 49 points if he plays all three remaining games.

 

At 47 points Rask is currently tied for #86 amoung NHL forwards for points. At first glance that might not seem that impressive, but remember with 30 teams and three players per line, that would put him just in at first line numbers. 50 points in the NHL may not be elite, but it does require serious skill, and most teams only go a few forwards deep before they drop below 50 point getters.

 

Last year Rask put up 33 points. If he hits 49 points that would be a 48% increase. And he's supposedly been playing injured a bit.

 

This is already really solid second line center numbers and he could logically push that up next year if healthy.

 

If Jordan can function as our #1 center, then we just need to find a good #3 center, and an elite winger or two, because V Rask is already among the best #2 centers in the league and should just be better next year.

Edited by remkin

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Good points Krule, and good to bump this thread a bit.

 

Aside from your mention of Sknner, who has definitely become a positive, I'd point out Victor Rask.

 

I called for the breakouts of Lindy and Rask at the start of the year. Well, I got one right.

 

Despite all of the deserved attention to the positive of the arrival of Jordan Staal's offense, Victor Rask actually has more points than Jordan.

 

Rask has 47 points with 3 games to play, which projects him to 49 points if he plays all three remaining games.

 

At 47 points Rask is currently tied for #86 amoung NHL forwards for points. At first glance that might not seem that impressive, but remember with 30 teams and three players per line, that would put him just in at first line numbers. 50 points in the NHL may not be elite, but it does require serious skill, and most teams only go a few forwards deep before they drop below 50 point getters.

 

Last year Rask put up 33 points. If he hits 49 points that would be a 48% increase. And he's supposedly been playing injured a bit.

 

This is already really solid second line center numbers and he could logically push that up next year if healthy.

 

If Jordan can function as our #1 center, then we just need to find a good #3 center, and an elite winger or two, because V Rask is already among the best #2 centers in the league and should just be better next year.

And as someone pointed out (was it you, Rem?) Rask has apparently been nursing a nagging injury for much of the year. I think there's still a chance Rask becomes the #1. Jordan's game is made for #2, and if Rask can get healthy over the summer and bring more consistently the flashes of dominance we've seen this year, he could be the big man in the slot this team has long needed on its first line. 

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And if Staal & Rask are the top 2 centers, regardless who goes where, the door's open for Lindholm to center the third line, seeing as that's where the braintrust wants him anyway.  So just find a stud winger or two, bonus points if they play on the right...

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http://www.thewhig.com/2016/04/13/kingston-frontenacs-among-ohl-awards-finalists

 

Kingston Frontenacs head coach Paul McFarland and players Roland McKeown and Spencer Watson are finalists for year-end awards in the Ontario Hockey League.

 

McKeown, Kingston’s captain, is a finalist for the Max Kaminsky Trophy for top defenceman. Jakob Chychrun (Sarnia), Travis Dermott (Erie), Cam Dineen (North Bay), Mitchell Vande Sompel (Oshawa) and Mikhail Sergachev (Windsor).

In 59 regular-season games this season McKeown scored seven goals and 42 points and was plus-21.

Only two other Kingston defencemen have won the award — Chris Allen in 1997-98 and Mike O’Connell of the Canadians in 1974-75.

 

Edited by remkin

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http://cardiaccane.com/2016/04/22/carolina-hurricanes-prospect-roundup-roland-mckeown/

 

Another nice summary of McKeown from Cardiac Cane. This is a guy very highly thought of at points in his career (like a possible top 10 pick) who slipped into the second round, but the Kings, a pretty good late round drafting team, traded another promising prospect to move up a few spots and grab.

 

Seems like he is getting back to playing like a first round pick prospect.

Edited by remkin

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http://cardiaccane.com/2016/04/22/carolina-hurricanes-prospect-roundup-roland-mckeown/

 

Another nice summary of McKeown from Canes Country. This is a guy very highly thought of at points in his career (like a possible top 10 pick) who slipped into the second round, but the Kings, a pretty good late round drafting team, traded another promising prospect to move up a few spots and grab.

 

Seems like he is getting back to playing like a first round pick prospect.

 

I liked the article too, but it is not from Canes Country. That is from Cardiac Cane.

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I liked the article too, but it is not from Canes Country. That is from Cardiac Cane.

 

 

Excellent story but a bit contradictory, going from 'we've heard so much about' to 'may not be a familiar name to Carolina Hurricanes faithful' in the span of 2 paragraphs.

 

Anyway, to make the kind of statement everyone expects from me by now, i'll go on the hook as saying the better McKeown does, the more-expendable Faulk is.  And everyone on both sides of the coin would likely agree that Faulk would bring a much-bigger return than McKeown at this point...

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I liked the article too, but it is not from Canes Country. That is from Cardiac Cane.

 

Fixed it. Good point.

 

McKeown's history is kind of interesting and has some parallels to Sareela. Both were very very highly touted at points in their early careers, and in McKeown's case even the start of his draft year. Both had drop-offs, in Sareela's case it came pretty early on, in McKeown's case in his draft year. Both were, at points in their development, seen as top 10 picks.

 

What is interesting about that is that it implies high upsides on both guys. Clearly GM's felt that aspects of each guy's game did not develop fast enough and the risk went up that it may never happen, so they both became second round picks. Personally, I love the idea of getting guys like this in trades because most 2nd rounders end up as NHL misses anyway, so might as well spread some risk around on guys who have a shot at being difference makers.

 

Anyway, both of these guys seem to be finding their game. Maybe not to the lofty levels projected on them at their peaks, but still both have gotten back on track from having dropped off the track.

 

It still remains to be seen if either or both will become major contributors, but there is the chance that both could, and that chance looks better than ever.

 

Add to that that both guys were had as only a part of deals for rentals (Sekera and Eric), and that we still have a first round pick and two seconds in those deals? Good.

 

I was hoping for a haul from trading Eric, but I am so glad we got something. Considering that we were likely only dealing with one team, and how far Eric's game has slipped, we did well.

Edited by remkin

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Excellent story but a bit contradictory, going from 'we've heard so much about' to 'may not be a familiar name to Carolina Hurricanes faithful' in the span of 2 paragraphs.

 

Anyway, to make the kind of statement everyone expects from me by now, i'll go on the hook as saying the better McKeown does, the more-expendable Faulk is.  And everyone on both sides of the coin would likely agree that Faulk would bring a much-bigger return than McKeown at this point...

 

Yeah, but I'm hoping that Canes mgmt isn't considering McKeown for NHL duty for at least another year or so.  We hit lightning in a bottle this year, I think it would be foolish to count on it happening again.  I trust that we'll soon be in a position where we have the luxury of actually being able to develop our yutes.

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Yeah, but I'm hoping that Canes mgmt isn't considering McKeown for NHL duty for at least another year or so.  We hit lightning in a bottle this year, I think it would be foolish to count on it happening again.  I trust that we'll soon be in a position where we have the luxury of actually being able to develop our yutes.

 

I really think that is the plan. Slavin was drafted 2012, making the team at age 21 (turns 22 next month). Pesce was drafted 2013, and made the team at 20, turning 21 in November. Essentially they were both 21 for most of the season.

 

Pesce is a draft year younger and about a half a year younger than Slavin.

 

Slavin had two years in college and Pesce had three.

 

Fleury and McKeown are July and January birth days in 1996. Both will be 20 at training camp, but both will be relatively younger than both Slavin and Pesce were. Both will be 20 most of the season, (though McKeown will bisect the year at 21 years old). Still, the point is that they are collectively a full year younger than Pesce/Slavin at camp. Clearly there is also the Major College vs. Junior Hockey issue too.

 

Watching them skate last year, I thought Fleury was a more natural, fluid skater, and is bigger, but his decision making was not NHL level, while McKeown was a bit better positionally, but did not stand out in his skating or size. Of course that was a year ago and they have improved.

 

Anyway, it definitely makes more sense for them to go AHL for most of next season to get the speed, and size, and also the system, since Charlotte plays our system too, unless one of them just blows doors off in camp. The Pesce/Slavin thing was rare. The Hanifin thing, extremely rare.

Edited by remkin

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Anyway, to make the kind of statement everyone expects from me by now, i'll go on the hook as saying the better McKeown does, the more-expendable Faulk is.  And everyone on both sides of the coin would likely agree that Faulk would bring a much-bigger return than McKeown at this point...

 

Never beat around the bush.

 

raSlCl.gif

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Agree re holding McKeown back, and the org's attitude seeming to be that longer development - particularly at D - is better. I think it's likely McKeown has kept an eye on the depth chart and that word is spreading down the ranks that something special is in the works here. Nothing will get a prospect back on track quite like moving from an org where it's going to be very hard to crack the roster to one where the opportunities are clear, and there's buzz about its future.

 

Regarding Faulk, and while I'm not changing my vote on the poll from "not sure" to "no," a big part of my uncertainty is that he is still young and could lead the D for years if his own-zone game improves markedly. But even if it improves marginally and we decide to part ways, I have to think we'd wait until the TD in the year before his current deal is up in order to maximize the potential return.

 

If we can get into that groove - of dealing players we feel are not part of the long-term plan while they have a full year left on their contracts (as opposed to months), it will do good things:

 

(1) for us, it will save us having to do the "expected" negotiation over the summer to try to extend them, allowing us to sidestep the drama we just experienced for the past year, and

 

(2) we'll find more willing trading partners, b/c (to their benefit) they'll have a full season to se if the player can fit their system. If he is great--but if not, they can still cut him loose at the next TD and get something back.  

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The conversation regarding our D is a positive one - alot of teams would like to be in our shoes I'm guessing. 

 

Focus on a #1 Keeper like Reimer who hopefully wants to come back east or Enroth although I don't know if he really is a #1 Keeper after playing backup to Quick for 90% of the season.  He might be another Eddie.  In any event I think RF isn't biting off more than he chew and will focus primarily on two top six forwards via trade using some of our picks or UFA.  If a Keeper somehow presents then fine nail him to a contract as well.  Probably we will need replacements for the following that are likely gone: Nash, Terry, Malone, Gerbe, and maybe McClement. Maybe two via the Checkers?  I like Brody Sutter.  Not the fastest to be sure but a big body who likes to bang, willing to drop the mitts and would bring some 4th line energy along with the Sutter name.

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The conversation regarding our D is a positive one - alot of teams would like to be in our shoes I'm guessing. 

 

XM Home ice guys were saying yesterday that Detroit doesn't even have a single top 3 DMan.

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