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2015/16 In-Season Talk

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I just don't know how to read those comments. Is he sugarcoating it? We all now how nice of an area this is to live in, but at what point is the nice weather outweighed by winning. Maybe he is happy here. He won a Cup already. Maybe he's content living out the rest of his life in Raleigh. 

 

I am so torn on the Staal subject, like many of you here. Tired of losing, tired of "close but no cigar". Staal has been our best player for years. We WILL take several steps back if/when he's gone...but I think that the fan base is almost coming to terms with that more and more. I know I'm coming around on the idea anyway, but I also know that we as hardcore fans are gonna stick with this team through thick and thin, even if we don't attend games as much. Can we say the same about the rest of the fan base or casual viewers? Probably not. 

 

The pie in the sky idea about signing him to a smaller contract, no NTC, no captaincy, AFTER renting him out at the deadline sounds amazing. I wish and hope that we can figure something like that out. But you gotta look at it from Staal's point of view as well. That's giving up a LOT to come back to a losing, but building team. He's a professional hockey player, but he's also a human being. Someone will give him 9 million on the FA Market. They shouldn't, it's dumb, but Toronto or whoever will be willing to shell out in hopes he gets better. Would he turn down that kind of money for a paycut and a demotion? Just seems to me like no normal person would...but what do I know?  (Not much)

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If Staal were smart he would want to move on at the deadline and get with a team that has a shot (same with Ward). Both these guys could stay in Carolina and never see the playoffs before they retire.  I would like to be a fly on the wall in Versteegs home.  He must be in shell shock coming from a first class organization in Chicago to here - from 21,000 seat sellouts every night at home to 6,500 seats every night here.  For tonights game against the Oilers I only selected this game to watch McDavid.  Now that he is hurt I get to see two meaningless organizations go at it. 

 

Can't wait for the Bill Peters pre game summation: "For sure they're a fast smart hockey club, they do a great job of taking away time and space.  Its going to be importnt we get the puck deep work our cycle and get traffic in front of the net, look to spring our D into the mix and back in our end make sure we follow our pass because they have an effective forcheck....blah blah blah."

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Used to post on here years back, but moved on. Been lurking, but now have to speak up and put my 2 cents in.

 

For those complaining about how bad this team sucks, are you willing to continue this way for years after EStaal is gone? Because that is exactly what is going to happen. We are not going to sign Kopitar or Stamkos. The high level free agents, are not going to sign here when there are better teams that are putting in offers. If EStaal goes and is not resigned, expect another 4-5 years of being in the bottom. Sure you can say, well we can build through the draft and get high picks, but that is a gamble. Those players don't always pan out, nor does having multiple #1 picks make your team that much better (see Edmonton).

 

I'm only quoting part of your post, but am responding the whole thing.

 

The problem with Eric is he's not the same guy that was a top 5-10 player in the league.  It's not even just statistics anymore, because I don't think he'd be a 70pt scorer even on an elite offensive team.  He used to fly down the ice in transition, make moves towards the slot, and shoot a whole lot more than he has in recent years.  Now he's slower, passive, and just stays on the outside.  He actually started off the season going in front of the net, but has since regressed back to his older (bad) habits.

 

Most importantly, he doesn't help this team win games anymore.  He doesn't make anymore impact on the game than Rask or Faulk.  I honestly think at this point he's more valuable to us gone than he is here.

 

And as far as finding offense through the draft, yeah there's not guarantees, but this team needs a rebuild.  This isn't the same 2010-11 team that probably was 1 or 2 pieces away.  Carolina shouldn't be above starting from scratch like other teams have in the past.  I don't think we'd be any worse than we already are.  And the Kopitar's and Stamkos's didn't just magically appear on those teams.  Those teams bottomed out in order to get those players by being in the same situation the Carolina's in right now.

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I was going to reply to Top asking me to defend E, but then I kept reading.

 

Just want to say as a moderator who really wants this board to be thoughtful, the last two pages have done that, and as a fan and reader of these boards I really enjoyed reading all of it.

 

Realmdrakkar laid out pretty much what I'm thinking. But great input from Superdave, OBXer, and really great to see you back Caniac247, great post to return with. And Canesfan 06 too.

 

And on the other side, Top, PK and Winger, very reasonable counterpoints.

 

What happens w/ Eric will very likely have a very profound impact on this team for years. Choosing the coach and handling the E situation are the two biggest single person decisions Francis will handle in his first few years. How does he handle it? We shall see, but it is an important topic, and the discussion on here has been very well done.

Edited by remkin

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I just don't know how to read those comments. Is he sugarcoating it? We all now how nice of an area this is to live in, but at what point is the nice weather outweighed by winning. Maybe he is happy here. He won a Cup already. Maybe he's content living out the rest of his life in Raleigh. 

 

 

There are more tweets from Chip I didn't post. I expect Chip will do a story on this that give a little more insight. If you click on the link in the post it will take you to Chips twitter account and you can see all the posts.

 

What I took away from E's comments is he would like to stay in Raleigh, He likes the direction Francis is taking, He is resolved that his negotiations will hinge on what the team wants to do and is resigned to the fact that some things may not be in his control. He did say that he hasn't been asked to waive his no trade at this time.

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There are more tweets from Chip I didn't post. I expect Chip will do a story on this that give a little more insight. If you click on the link in the post it will take you to Chips twitter account and you can see all the posts.

 

What I took away from E's comments is he would like to stay in Raleigh, He likes the direction Francis is taking, He is resolved that his negotiations will hinge on what the team wants to do and is resigned to the fact that some things may not be in his control. He did say that he hasn't been asked to waive his no trade at this time.

 

Great, thanks for the info. I will say that it's somewhat refreshing to hear those comments from Staal. He doesn't seem like he's in denial, or having delusions of grandeur when it comes to resigning. He seems to have his head on his shoulders and knows that some things ARE out of his control. I'm glad to see he doesn't have the "I'm good enough to get paid, so pay me or I walk" attitude that a lot of pro athletes have now days. 

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If Staal were smart he would want to move on at the deadline and get with a team that has a shot (same with Ward). Both these guys could stay in Carolina and never see the playoffs before they retire.  I would like to be a fly on the wall in Versteegs home.  He must be in shell shock coming from a first class organization in Chicago to here - from 21,000 seat sellouts every night at home to 6,500 seats every night here.  For tonights game against the Oilers I only selected this game to watch McDavid.  Now that he is hurt I get to see two meaningless organizations go at it. 

 

Can't wait for the Bill Peters pre game summation: "For sure they're a fast smart hockey club, they do a great job of taking away time and space.  Its going to be importnt we get the puck deep work our cycle and get traffic in front of the net, look to spring our D into the mix and back in our end make sure we follow our pass because they have an effective forcheck....blah blah blah."

 

I don't think this is uncharted territory for Versteeg.  He came in the league on a bad Chicago team, and he played in Florida for a few years as well.  Maybe he can re-sign here, but based off his history of floating and the team's current status, I doubt it.

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I've seen all of Eric's career, and couldn't begin to count how many games I've personally seen him play.  It's a lot.  From my viewpoint, he's not the player he was even 5 years ago.  He's lost a couple of steps, as players do when they age.  He doesn't push defenses back on their heels flying down center ice anymore. He still can drive possession in the o-zone, but not at the level he once did.  He's even been put at wing, which is a good indicator of the above.

 

IMO, Eric is now a complimentary player, and a guy I'm not expecting to put up 70 or more points anymore.  Those days appear to be behind him.  Today, he's on pace for somewhere around 50 points.

 

I don't subscribe to the theory him leaving is going to put a rebuild back 3 or 4 years.  I also don't subscribe to the theory that one player is responsible for the losing culture here as there are many more just as plausible explanations for why this team hasn't made the playoffs in such a long time.

 

Personally, I think a 50-point center is replaceable, and I'm ready to move on from the Staal and Ward era, regardless of the ramifications for a rebuild.  The franchise needs a new identity, and while appreciating everything Staal and Ward has done for the organization, sometimes you just need a fresh start with different faces.

 

I think new (local) ownership would also help tremendously with the rebuild of the franchise.

 

My modest $.02.

Edited by coastal_caniac

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Aggregate stats are all well and good, but they say nothing about current performance. Eric's 10th in the NHL in salary this year - and where is he this year in all those categories? If he were ever going to bring it, isn't this year, the year that he's up for renegotiation, the time?

 

Maybe I'm still "too Philly," but you alluded to it yourself, SuperDave: Roddy's tribute showed exactly what this team has lacked for too long, and I don't think keeping Eric in the room, even if we can, allows us to make the break we need to move forward.

 

The sooner RF makes clear that we're not resigning him, the longer the offers come in prior to the deadline, and the better they will get. Let's light this candle.

 

Did you miss the part where I said I was ready to move on to a new chapter?

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There are more tweets from Chip I didn't post. I expect Chip will do a story on this that give a little more insight. If you click on the link in the post it will take you to Chips twitter account and you can see all the posts.

 

What I took away from E's comments is he would like to stay in Raleigh, He likes the direction Francis is taking, He is resolved that his negotiations will hinge on what the team wants to do and is resigned to the fact that some things may not be in his control. He did say that he hasn't been asked to waive his no trade at this time.

That's pretty much what I took from his comments. He has said prior that he wants to be a part of this team's turn around and wants to help them get back into the playoffs. I know people talk about what a horrible captain he is (which surprises me that so many fans get to be in the locker room) but believe it or not he does care. Do you really think he wants to be the captain that doesn't get his team to the playoffs. I have no doubt that he does want to be a part of the turn around.

 

To me, it sounds like he wants to stay and would probably take a discount to stay (some team will pay him more), but if Francis says his services aren't needed, then he isn't going to cry about it and he'll move on.

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More Staal from Chip

 

Chip Alexander @ice_chip 59m59 minutes ago

Rick Curran, who represents Eric Staal and Cam Ward), said contract talks for the two could start in the first couple of weeks of December.

 

Curran: "Eric and Cam believe this is a good team and want to be a part of it. They don't want to go anywhere

 

 

Chips N&O story    The News & Observer

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We'll see what happens when money starts getting talked about, both players aren't going to tarnish their careers here and say their ready to move on if they happened to be. I would imagine that RF will wind up taking on the villains role of calling it a "business decision" if it came to that to let Eric and Cam leave with dignity.

Edited by legend-1

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I guess will see if RF has to take on a villain role but I'm sure business decision and we had to do what is right for the team will be thrown about.

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I'm not saying Eric and Cam don't want to stay, but I am saying that is the right thing to say no matter what. No one will know what goes on behind closed doors in the negotiations, so why not talk about how much you want to stay? You may want to stay for your exact same contract that Francis would be out of his mind to offer, but you would technically still be wanting to stay.

 

Again, I'm not saying they would outright lie if they could not wait to get out of here, but it is the fan-friendly, politically correct thing to say you want to stay here and be part of the future. Further, even if you plan on not waiving your NTC unless the perfect situation comes up, you would be wise not to say that either. Whitney never said he would refuse to waive his NTC, he just did it (supposedly, we don't even know that for absolute sure, which makes the point).

 

So "I really want to stay, but whatever the team decides I will look at." But if the writing is on the wall for Eric, I do really think it is best for him to get out, get with some talent, get his numbers up a bit, maybe a run at the playoffs.

 

If Coastal is right, and I do think E has lost a step too, then what is the right number anyway? 50 point guys? $4-5 million? Can't see him signing for that.

 

I still ike the rent and return idea. Let him go. Get a pick and a player. Name a new Captain. Take him back in the offseason at a reduced rate and with no NTC. If Eric is really at best a 50 point guy, he can at least help our while we try to draft or sign the new first line center that every cup contender needs. If it really isn't working, trade him.

 

I wonder what Ward would bring. I like to think a first rounder, but probalby not now. Maybe if someone in the hunt suddenly really needed goaltending and Ward gets his save % up at least a little. What do people think Ward would fetch?

Edited by remkin

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At this point, I'm done gnashing my teeth at the players...you all know my opinions on trading and stripping off letters on the fronts of jerseys, etc.  I'm just going to have blind faith that RF will do what he thinks is best for this organization in the long-term...and I'll still cheer for the Canes, even if they suck for the next decade (which, if RF does nothing, will be more than likely).

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At this point, I'm done gnashing my teeth at the players...you all know my opinions on trading and stripping off letters on the fronts of jerseys, etc.  I'm just going to have blind faith that RF will do what he thinks is best for this organization in the long-term...and I'll still cheer for the Canes, even if they suck for the next decade (which, if RF does nothing, will be more than likely).

 

 

Based on what i've seen, i'd wager to say he won't do 'nothing'.  Not everything he did during the off-season has fully panned out, but i'd have to believe he didn't expect Wiz to be out for the season 47 seconds into his first shift.  But from solid draft picks over the past 2 years to good trades that led/are leading to additional draft picks to bringing in new coaching staffs in both Raleigh and Charlotte to cutting loose some dead wood (think things are bad now, just imagine if he hadn't bought out Semin and then made the trade for Versteeg!), he definitely isn't resting on his laurels.  I'm with you... i'll have that blind faith.  Stanley isn't returning to Raleigh this year nor quite likely next, but i do like the direction Francis is taking.

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I wonder what Ward would bring. I like to think a first rounder, but probalby not now. Maybe if someone in the hunt suddenly really needed goaltending and Ward gets his save % up at least a little. What do people think Ward would fetch?

I don't think we'd take less than a first-rounder and a prospect for Cam, and I think we'd be foolish if we did.

 

IMO, neither RF nor BP is ready to let Cam go. We are clearly building from the back end out, and our D future is bright. Our challenge is putting the puck in the net. Getting rid of Cam potentially adds the challenge of keeping it out of our own net, too. Nothing will rattle a D - especially a young D - quite like losing a steady presence in goal, and I don't think Lack is there just yet. Confidence in your keeper is invaluable; removing the steadiest piece of our back end could set everything back.

 

Whether we can keep Cam depends on what he is willing to accept, of course - but also on what we have to work with. Eric's contract is the real wild card there. If his contract is entirely gone or becomes an extension at a rate most here seem to agree he would not accept, I think we are then able to offer Cam a three-year deal at up to $5M (1st yr), $4.5M (2nd) and $4 (3rd), on the expectation that Lack begins to step up and Ward winds down over the next two years. No NTC, of course.

 

At those numbers, our total cost for goaltending actually drops by $600,000 per year for the next two years.

 

I think the bargaining starts at 4.5/4/3.5. RF could do just a two-year deal, but I think he'll hedge his bets and try to do a three-year, just in case Lack doesn't pan out. His deal is only for two more years, and giving Cam the third year provides some insurance by giving Alex (that's soooo much easier than trying to spell the kid's last name!) more development time, whether for the backup role (assuming Lack works out) or as the possible #1 (with Cam backing up in year three of his deal). 

 

So, if some team is willing to give up a first and a prospect, you have to listen. But given where we're at in our back-end development and the D's confidence in him, I think keeping Cam for another couple years is important.

Edited by top-shelf-1

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Good to see Murph back practicing in a regular jersey.

Amen. And how things can change in a year!

 

This just in, he's headed to CLT:

http://hurricanes.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=789844

 

Checkers have four home games in a row, so Murph can get up to speed without all the travel. Good decision.

Edited by top-shelf-1

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Interesting article about the best upcoming UFAs over at ESPN Insider.  Craig Custace has E Staal rated as the #9 UFA.  But former NHL team executive Frank Provenzano -- now CEO of FansEye, a fan-based player evaluation app -- provides projected price tags for each free agent, and he's got E's value pretty low; a one year deal at $4.5m, which would be tied for 15th on the list.  I'd be pretty surprised if E doesn't do better than a 1 year $4.5m deal . . .

 

 

9. Eric Staal, C, Carolina Hurricanes

Staal wants to stay in Carolina, and his agent Rick Curran has met with Hurricanes GM Ron Francis about working out a deal. The holdup is that Francis still has to determine the direction of this season’s team.

“Ronnie has asked me to wait until the end of this month and we hope to get together and talk about both Eric and Cam Ward,” said Curran during a phone conversation. “It’s safe to say that by mid-December, we’ll have a much better idea whether we’re going to be able to do something. The reality is that [Francis] has to do what he’s going to do with his hockey team.”

Carolina has played competitive hockey under coach Bill Peters, but is still sitting in sixth place in the Metropolitan division. Staal has 12 points in 20 games so far this season, logging more than 20 minutes per game for Peters.

Curran says no specifics have been discussed regarding numbers, and that both Staal and Ward want to see the rebuild through in Carolina.

“They have no interest in leaving,” he said. “They feel, personally, that it would be bailing out.”

Provenzano’s price tag: One year, $4.5 million. Why? “I think he’s going to go somewhere he can win and re-establish himself, because he’s been on a bad team now for a while. I think he goes and does a one-year deal.”

Edited by LakeLivin

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Interesting article about the best upcoming UFAs over at ESPN Insider.  Craig Custace has E Staal rated as the #9 UFA.  But former NHL team executive Frank Provenzano -- now CEO of FansEye, a fan-based player evaluation app -- provides projected price tags for each free agent, and he's got E's value pretty low; a one year deal at $4.5m, which would be tied for 15th on the list.  I'd be pretty surprised if E doesn't do better than a 1 year $4.5m deal . . .

 

 

9. Eric Staal, C, Carolina Hurricanes

Staal wants to stay in Carolina, and his agent Rick Curran has met with Hurricanes GM Ron Francis about working out a deal. The holdup is that Francis still has to determine the direction of this season’s team.

“Ronnie has asked me to wait until the end of this month and we hope to get together and talk about both Eric and Cam Ward,” said Curran during a phone conversation. “It’s safe to say that by mid-December, we’ll have a much better idea whether we’re going to be able to do something. The reality is that [Francis] has to do what he’s going to do with his hockey team.”

Carolina has played competitive hockey under coach Bill Peters, but is still sitting in sixth place in the Metropolitan division. Staal has 12 points in 20 games so far this season, logging more than 20 minutes per game for Peters.

Curran says no specifics have been discussed regarding numbers, and that both Staal and Ward want to see the rebuild through in Carolina.

“They have no interest in leaving,” he said. “They feel, personally, that it would be bailing out.”

Provenzano’s price tag: One year, $4.5 million. Why? “I think he’s going to go somewhere he can win and re-establish himself, because he’s been on a bad team now for a while. I think he goes and does a one-year deal.”

 

Except for age, the parallels between Eric's situation and Jarome Iginla's a couple of years ago are striking.

 

Iginla wound up with Pittsburgh for the playoffs at the deadline at age 35, then signed a one-year deal as a UFA with the Bruins at $6 million in the off-season. He put up 61 points, but Boston didn't have the space to keep him. He's now in the second year of a three-year, $16-million deal with the Avs, where he put up 59 points last year.

 

Iginla is more physical and I think, despite his being four years older than Eric, that he had higher value coming to a contender than Eric might because of that physicality. However, if Eric can light it up during the stretch drive and playoffs, I agree he will find a home somewhere for more than $4.5 come the off-season.

 

If Eric and the Canes don't come to terms, it will be interesting to see whether he is offered more than a one-year deal in the off-season. He's certainly young enough to play for several more years. However, I think a prudent GM would want to "try him on" for a year to determine his value before going longer-term.  

Edited by top-shelf-1

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I think you get the most you can from Ward. I'd be surprised if a team took a chance on him since he's been inconsistent and has a huge cap hit. The biggest obstacle I think is that we've got Staal with an 8.5 hit and Ward with 6.5 but we can only retain on one of them. Man I can't wait till we're rid of the curse of JR. I think JML and Versteeg will make good rentals too. Hard to say how many 1st rounders we'll have in the end... not a bad thing at all.

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I tell you this, if E can be had for $4.5 million? That's pretty good value. He may be a 50 point guy, but in the right situation I still think he could do more. Imagine renting him out, then getting him back for $4.5 million? Nice.

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