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In-Season 2018-2019

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Philly beat the B’s in OT...and the Jets just did us a solid by storming back to beat the BJ’s in regulation 

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I guess we'll start to see tonight. I agree that the Canes of the past have occasionally clawed back to right around here after a nice run, only to return to Earth and fall out of it right about now. The break is a big challenge because this team was rolling. 

 

The one thing that I take some solace in is that this is a different team. Different make up, different coach. The team has been playing the same type of game all year, so one would think they'd keep at it. If the goals dry up again, we're toast, but if this team plays the game of the past 13 again, then it could happen. 

 

Maybe this time is different. The way they bounced back after laying the turds in New York and Ottawa was not a team ready to lay down. And taking care of business on that West coast trip as well as getting so close in Tampa and Calgary, two very good teams, may be a sign that things are coming together. 

 

One thing about the XM Brindy interview I didn't put on that post: Aho. He hates to lose and can will the team to wins. 

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15 hours ago, AWACSooner said:

Philly beat the B’s in OT...and the Jets just did us a solid by storming back to beat the BJ’s in regulation 

Cue the Torts meltdown... oh, wait--he had one the night before, when Buffalo embarrassed him. Couldn't happen to a nicer guy. 

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5 hours ago, slapshot02 said:

Hoping to seeing a healthy Ferland and NN in the line up for a stretch until Ferlands fate is decided.

Ditto. It's really Ferland's closing argument. If he's held out, I think we can assume he's already gone, and the team doesn't want to tempt fate, which has seldom smiled on this org. It would be soooooo Canes to have a deal - say Faulk and Ferland, for an already-signed scorer - in the can--and then Ferland pulls a hammy.

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2 hours ago, Danimal38 said:

Yikes, words like that are not used often.  He must be pretty bad off.  

I have to think with not even skating yet he is close to done this year. Considering what the family went through last year I'm betting Mrs.Staal has had her input as well. I'm sure she doesn't want to see him back on the ice until he is 100% healthy.

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3 hours ago, slapshot02 said:

I have to think with not even skating yet he is close to done this year. Considering what the family went through last year I'm betting Mrs.Staal has had her input as well. I'm sure she doesn't want to see him back on the ice until he is 100% healthy.

As much as I hate to say it, mentally, he hasn’t appeared to be the same on the ice since that tragedy...and I don’t hold it against him one bit.

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So we are 5 games above .500.  Thats the area we flirt with every year and end 3-4 games over .500 and no playoffs.  There are a lot of ways to predict what it takes to make playoffs.   I have always noticed 6-8 games over .500 with a reasonable amount of OTL will get you in.  We are right there.  

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Looking at the standings we are now listed as the first team off the cutline. 

 

We have an amazingly identical record to Buffalo, almost mirror. Except one thing: Our trajectories. 

 

Last 14:

 

Canes:  10-3-1    W2

Slugs:  4-10-1      L2

 

 

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So first the major caveat: things can change fast. They have in the past, and it's never been to our advantage. That said, this time really seems different. 

 

We currently sit 3 points out straight up, 4 points adjusted for beans, behind Columbus. We have no teams to jump besides what ever team might slip that is currently in. Using my one point per bean gross adjustment we are out by:

 

4 points to Columbus

5 points to Montreal

5 points to Boston

6 points to Washington

6 points to Pittsburgh

 

Looking at goal diff and recent trends, and just eyeballing things situationally (Columbus not signing Panerin and Bob, and possibly trading one or both), I would say that Columbus and Montreal are very vulnerable, with Boston and Washington not invincible. 

 

We are hot. We are trending up. This feels more sustainable than usual to me because we have been playing a similar style all year, but seem to be getting it to the next level where plays are made and pucks go in. This has been going on for 14 games now with only two exceptions. 

 

I will break down that 14 game next.

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OK, the last 14 games: 10-3-1. Two stinkers. 

 

This is a logic-stretch, but when the team has played it's game in the past 14 (12 times), we are 10-1-1 with both losses to the two best teams in the league on the road. It's a stretch because you can't just toss out the no show games, but it does suggest that unless we lay down, we have been winning at an amazing clip lately. 

 

Obviously I like to try to quantitate how good the team has been in stretches, in terms of how good we would look in the standings if we had this going on all the time. So stretching these last 14 games out over our season to date, we'd be: +51 goal diff. This would be second only to Tampa and just ahead of Calgary. We'd be on a 123 point pace for the season. I'm not saying that this team is that good. It is not. You can't just project the best part of a team's season over the whole thing. I'm saying that this team has been THAT good lately.

 

If we kept this up for the remaining 31 games we'd end up with 102 points. 

 

OK that is not going to happen. We are not Tampa Bay. But it doesn't need to happen. I think in the end 95 points gets it done. 

 

But this stretch suggests that this team is better than we were. It's not just luck. It's scoring. And if that keeps up, we'll make it.

 

In those 14 games, we've only held the other guys to 2 or less goals 4 times. We are winning by outscoring them. And that's what works in todays NHL. Over those 14 games we are averaging 4 goals per game and giving up 3. The eyeball suggests we are playing OK D and getting decent goaltending, but our goals against per game is mid pack. The goals for? It is too much work to look at that 14 game segment for the NHL, but overall Tampa is #1 at 3.88 goals per game, we've been 4.00.

 

We are scoring lights out. 

 

Can we keep this up? No. Again, we are not Tampa. But again, we don't need to. We just need to keep close to it. Can we? Maybe. And especially if we keep this run going a bit longer while we're feeling it.

 

The case can be made that this is unsustainable. Probably true. But my take has always been that we needed a run to get back in the playoff pack, then maintain. We are sooo close to doing that. 

 

My main immediate fear was that this confident team would sputter out of the post-break gate. It did not. 

 

My next fear is that we will drop our annual choke-fest to Calgary on Sunday afternoon. If we get that one? OK, big road trip. But if we keep rolling through that road trip the odds will flip in our favor, and the way things are going, that very well could happen.

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Teams are going to have to make real serious offers for Ferland, anything less and he's just more useful to a playoff run to us. Anything less then a first, I'd rather take a stab at the playoffs.

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5 minutes ago, legend-1 said:

Teams are going to have to make real serious offers for Ferland, anything less and he's just more useful to a playoff run to us. Anything less then a first, I'd rather take a stab at the playoffs.

Agree. Heck, if we keep this run going, maybe even a first rounder isn't enough. He could be an "own rental" for us.

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NN has been a great pickup. Larceny for sure. He has taken TT’s spot on Aho’s line. Since we acquired NN, how has TT done now that he’s separated from Aho? I don’t take time to look up stats, but he does seem to have been less noticeable.

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39 minutes ago, bluedevilcane said:

NN has been a great pickup. Larceny for sure. He has taken TT’s spot on Aho’s line. Since we acquired NN, how has TT done now that he’s separated from Aho? I don’t take time to look up stats, but he does seem to have been less noticeable.

1 G, 4 assists in the 5 games.

 

1 game was 1 G and 2 As.

2 games with an assist

2 games, nothing on the score sheet.

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3 hours ago, legend-1 said:

Teams are going to have to make real serious offers for Ferland, anything less and he's just more useful to a playoff run to us. Anything less then a first, I'd rather take a stab at the playoffs.

I don't think this team is deep enough to let him walk for nothing.

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2 minutes ago, caniac6 said:

I don't think this team is deep enough to let him walk for nothing.

If all we can get is a second rounder (likely a late second rounder) the chances that player makes the NHL is all the slimmer. Vs, a playoff run. I'd still prolly take the first though, if that offer should happen.

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6 minutes ago, legend-1 said:

If all we can get is a second rounder (likely a late second rounder) the chances that player makes the NHL is all the slimmer. Vs, a playoff run. I'd still prolly take the first though, if that offer should happen.

How about another gritty player with a bit of skill?

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Speaking of Gritty, the Phlyers have ripped off 7 wins in a row, mostly in extra innings...

 

edit: Habs lost in OT to the Debbils 

Edited by AWACSooner

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8 hours ago, sleekfeeder said:

Big help tonight.

Gotta execute now.

Exactly.  Yesterday was a big gift.  Don't waste the gift. Grab it and run with it.

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17 hours ago, caniac6 said:

How about another gritty player with a bit of skill?

🤮 

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