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Offseason Talk 2019

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14 hours ago, bluedevilcane said:

Yes but he reports to Waddell who reports to Dundon. I agree that this signing needs to be done right away. There are enough comparables out there to find the right number. The fan base and any free agents we might be interested in need to see we can get a deal done with a player that has been called the face of the franchise.

I think maybe it was Waddell at his press conference with Brind'Amour, but I think they use Tulsky their analytics guy to come up with comparable contracts. 

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45 minutes ago, KJUNKANE said:

Ned's single foray last year was successful, but I just do not have confidence in him? Wonder if it would be possible to leverage this kid Tokarski away from the Rangers, but I doubt it as Lundqvist is going downhill rapidly?

 

And slap, to me Petr, as good as he was performing there at the end, I just am not totally sold on his consistency? Wonder if we could make a play for Lehner? 

 

Ned broke out in the back half of the year. He was been solid before that, but didn't bring the big save percentage till the back half, which still left him with .916 for the year. This was good for 9th best on the year, but it was the back half that made him look really ready. The playoffs have been more mixed for Ned. He's at .911. Thing is save percentages really need a pretty good run to even out. Tokarski is .979 in the playoffs, though only 3 games and was .914 in the regular season. 

 

Anyways, I think Ned's save percentage in the back half was in the neighborhood of .930 or better. BUT that's just a half of a season with a more pedestrian playoffs. AND that's vs AHL caliber talent. His NHL 'n' value is miniscule. Doesn't mean he can't do it, but I'm sure we'd rather get him some NHL games without him spending most of his time opening the door to the bench. 

 

My thinking is that despite Forslund's rosy talk of Ned, I don't think the team wants to put him down as the NHL back up. 

 

An ideal situation would be to get McE back here as the back up with the idea that Ned might get some games even if everyone is healthy. This seems so ideal, that I'd be hot on that trail even if Mrazek isn't back.

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In terms of Mrazek being back, I had thought that was almost a given. And Waddell said they want both goalies back. But he's generally going to say that to keep options open (unless one was a disaster). Further, Forslund surely didn't think that bringing Mrazek back was a given with his comments after that last playoff game. He's not always right, but he has to have a pretty good hand on what's going on. Mrazek was so lights out down the stretch and seemed so in the playoffs (pre-injury). But his save percentage in the playoffs was .894 and on that he was 16/17 goalies, and his full year ranking was #22 in save percentage (20 games min). 

 

So we'd be betting that Mrazek figured something out and gained consistency in the back half of the year that will be more like what he will bring over next year, and that a couple of blowouts, not really on him, marred his playoff save %. Personally I think that this is a pretty good bet. He looked so good, really from December on until the Boston series, where he got too out of position too often. But part of that was Boston too. Thing is, Bad Mrazek is pretty bad. So to me, the key will be that the goalie coach really thinks Mrazek has largely cleaned his game of the bad tendencies. And the Committee surely won't tell us the answer to that until it's over.

 

The thing is, we've really struggled at the "spin the goalie wheel" game. Guys sport outlier save percentages for short runs (admittedly Mrazek could be that too), then come here and MongoLack the place up. Maybe our new goalie coach can help if we go outside. Lehner had a monster year, and would be tempting. He has health issues that could be a little scary, but what an upside. I really can't even pretend to know what's out there because I was psyched about Lack and Mongo, so there. 

 

But I do get the feeling that the Committee is openly looking at essentially every possible position where an upgrade (or fine tuning) can be made. Further, with Mrazek and McElhinney both UFA's they really have to look at every option since the player has the choice.

 

That said, Mrazek's full year GAA was only .004 from the middle of the top 31, and such names as Carey Price and Pekke Rhinne. And his end of year was top of the pack. Unless there is a lock for solidly better, my bet is that we try very hard to put the band back together in goal, with Ned getting some starts.

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40 minutes ago, remkin said:

I think maybe it was Waddell at his press conference with Brind'Amour, but I think they use Tulsky their analytics guy to come up with comparable contracts. 

I don’t know his name (someone help me out), but when Dundon assembled the committee, he brought in a former player agent specifically to negotiate contracts.

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3 minutes ago, bluedevilcane said:

I don’t know his name (someone help me out), but when Dundon assembled the committee, he brought in a former player agent specifically to negotiate contracts.

Yes, he mentioned him too. They have a subcommittee for negotiating contracts. The ex agent, Tulsky, Waddell, TD, at least. 

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15 hours ago, legend-1 said:

It was a back to back, neither team used their starter for what it's worth. But Tokarski played way better all the same and it'll be interesting to see what Vellucci decides.

I forgot they had so many back to backs in the AHL playoffs. I want the Checkers to win, but I would rather it be with Ned since he is our guy. As far as Ned becoming more consistent in the second half of the year, maybe that makes a case for trying to sign Petr for maybe 3 years and Mac for one to give Ned one more year in Charlotte to solidify his game. If Mac were younger, I’d bet someone would offer him 2 years at backup money, but probably not given his age. I think more than anything else, how we navigate the goaltender situation will determine our success next year. And that includes the possibility we go back to Mrazek and he regresses which he has done in the past. Really, anyone we are likely to bring in comes with some risk.

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5 minutes ago, remkin said:

Yes, he mentioned him too. They have a subcommittee for negotiating contracts. The ex agent, Tulsky, Waddell, TD, at least. 

I don’t care who does it, just get Aho signed!

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4 hours ago, KJUNKANE said:

Ned's single foray last year was successful, but I just do not have confidence in him? Wonder if it would be possible to leverage this kid Tokarski away from the Rangers, but I doubt it as Lundqvist is going downhill rapidly?

 

And slap, to me Petr, as good as he was performing there at the end, I just am not totally sold on his consistency? Wonder if we could make a play for Lehner? 

Lehner scares me. His career numbers have been ok, decent gaa numbers and save percentage but his win/loss record in his career is shaky. Yes he has played on some bad teams but for me Lehner is to "emotional".Prior substance abuse issues and mental health issues are a crap shoot imo.

Edited by slapshot02
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21 minutes ago, slapshot02 said:

Lehner scares me. His career numbers have been ok, decent gaa numbers and save percentage but his win/loss record in his career is shaky. Yes he has played on some bad teams but for me Lehner is to "emotional".Prior substance abuse issues and mental health issues are a crap shoot imo.

Sounds a bit like a former goalie we took a chance on. No, thanks.

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the Score

Don Waddell and Tom Dundon are said to have a mutual agreement in place and are working out details of a formal agreement. I was a skeptic when Waddell was named GM. I just couldn't get past his time with Atlanta and being the GM when the Thrashers left Atlanta for Canada. With all the rumors of the Cane relocation, as baseless as they may have been, swirling around I didn't think we needed a guy with Waddell's history at the helm.

 

I was wrong. Waddell has done a darn good job taking the Canes to the next step. My apologies Don, not that he cares or should care what I think.

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I think the problems in Atlanta had very little to do with Waddell, and were due to ownership issues.

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53 minutes ago, caniac6 said:

I think the problems in Atlanta had very little to do with Waddell, and were due to ownership issues.

Waddell had like 6 different owners wanting to do 6 different things  with the team  and  they would bicker  among each other  and not sitting down with each other  to take the team in any serious direction .   To those owners for the Thrashers  all they cared about was how being a part owner looked on behalf of their portfolio  and could care less about what the fans of the team thought . To the owners of the Thrashers  it  was nothing more than a  bargaining  chip to elevated their own status in the world of Elites .   That's the difference between  a gm with a bunch  of half witted morons for owners versus     a gm with 1  owner who adores and worships the ground  Brind'Amour  walks on  . 

 

Waddell however   can    make stupid  trades sometimes !    But with that saying his track record for drafting talent  has been  a Million miles ahead of Rutherford .   Francis   was flawed as a gm    because of what he learned from  Rutherford   but when Francis did what he thought was best it generally helped out the Team .  And the way some of you fans trash Francis  pisses me off  by some of your negative comments ! Because of Ron Francis  the Checkers look good  and the future for the Canes look good ,  And Francis  did that in  a short amount of time !   I wish Tom Dundon would write Ron Francis an apology letter  for how he dismissed  his hard work in trying to build something for the long term .   But I dont think Dundon understands  that let alone has the hubris  to thank Ron Francis for what he did for this organization  going forward !   Waddell  im sure is great full for what Ron  Francis did .   

Edited by Canesfanforever

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3 hours ago, OBXer said:

the Score

Don Waddell and Tom Dundon are said to have a mutual agreement in place and are working out details of a formal agreement. I was a skeptic when Waddell was named GM. I just couldn't get past his time with Atlanta and being the GM when the Thrashers left Atlanta for Canada. With all the rumors of the Cane relocation, as baseless as they may have been, swirling around I didn't think we needed a guy with Waddell's history at the helm.

 

I was wrong. Waddell has done a darn good job taking the Canes to the next step. My apologies Don, not that he cares or should care what I think.

 

I was too.  Ditto.

 

I'd still like to see him take a water bottle squirt to the face, just to celebrate this season's accomplishments.  What ever happened to that commercial?

Edited by wxray1

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Just to be a touch contrarian, I do want to see a bit more before ordaining Waddell. It is hard with a committee to know who is pulling the strings for one thing. And we still need some time to see if he can take us that next step. OK, OK, I'm partly just playing devil's advocate. The coach clearly gets an A, but does the GM too? Probably. But the ordination is a multi-year degree and Waddell just finished Freshman year. Very strong year, but not perfect.

 

To a man, including the coach, it was not only known, but said out loud many times: this team over-performed. Now this is an amazing thing. But, how much of that was the coach and his approach vs. GM? And can the team repeat that feat on guts and camaraderie without upgrades? Probably not. So how does Waddell and Co handle the issues presented this off-season and bring in that elusive upgrade? I still want to see that.

 

OK, OK, the fear was that Waddell, given some of his moves in Atlanta, and his buddy from Buffalo, given some of his moves in the past, might be an abject failure. That most certainly did not happen. Further, in fairness, the plan was to do the biggest cliche in hockey: "make this team harder to play against". And whatever the long term ends up being on some of those moves, he clearly executed that plan. Ferland, Martinook, Dougie, and also DeHaan brought the hits along with elevating Foegele who hit as well. 

 

So why reservations? Well, there was the genius move, but the big trade is still a question mark, and then there's the return on Skinner. This is getting long so I'll add some specifics below. 

 

I am cautiously optimistic that Waddell can make the right moves this off-season. He, like the team has over-achieved expectations, but now expectations are higher, is I guess what I'm really saying.

 

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OK, while I think Waddell, like the team, had a lot of things break his way, and we're not sure how much the committee decided things, as I actually break down the moves the team made last year, it's really hard not to give Waddell an A. 

 

1. Hired Brind'Amour. What can I add really, except that going with a rookie head coach, even one like Brind'Amour was a risky move. At the time it really looked like just no one really wanted to GM or coach for the Committee, so we just looked around the room and promoted guys. But, he was hired, and it was the masterstroke to rule the rest. There is no question that Brind'Amour is reason #1 that this team so dramatically overachieved. But the coach hire, is typically credited to the GM who hired him. 

 

2. Waddell's best trade, maybe a career best? Obviously, Nino for Rask. A bit of luster came off with Nino's relatively quiet play-off run. But there is no room to  debate that we do NOT get into the playoffs if Rask is still skating around creating bupkiss on offense. I mean Nino put up 14 goals and 30 points in 36 games. That's a 32 goal, 68 point pace. Rask? Over 49 games his totals projected to a 5 goal, 15 point FULL season. Not only did we get a top 6 forward, but we jettisoned a contract that now the Wild have to deal with.

 

3. The goalies. It was the most important, but again, was this his call? Was this a bit of luck? Someone saw the potential in Mrazek and made him part of the plan in the offseason. Since Mrazek panned out, I guess credit goest to Waddell. Seemed really risky though to bet on Mongo and Mrazek with their previous TWO years of fail. Did Waddell see the true Mrazek? It's just hard to think there was not a lot of luck in Mrazek turning his game around. Then again, we brought in a new goalie coach and the GM needs credit for that. Further, an early and lethal hook on Darling was an underrated critical move. Picking up McE on waivers was a gift that even GM remkin could have made. But given what we are paying him and after the summer of Darling work out videos and Rocky comeback pieces, it would have been really easy to roll him out there a few more times, which could have strung out to a few more. Waddell or the committee did not succumb to that and it made all of the difference. 

 

4. Martinook. I had to go back to make sure that was not Francis. It was Waddell. And now that I think about it, it was the trade he personally told me he was making as I met him in the elevator at the Bon Jovi concert. That turned out to be a much bigger move than it looked like. Not only did this expected 4th liner put up 15 goals (6th best for forwards) but he hit, and provided serious heart and leadership. 

 

5. Skinner for Pu. At first blush, this one goes in the negative file. It was a long term fail due to paltry return, but a big part of that was the NTC to Skinner. Apparently Skinner, like Fox, tied Waddel's hands and it was not an open market. It was hard to watch Skinner set the world on fire, but after the full season played out, Buffalo folded like a cheap chair and we excelled with our new approach. Time has been a bit kinder to what looked like a flop at the time. Now it's Buffalo that has to try to pay Skinner some insane amount of cash for goals that are often given back on the other end, and we are past it.

 

6. The blockbuster. Well, the taste of Fox being gone when he's exactly what we need, and Waddell himself said he was 99.9% sure we'd sign him, is still in my mouth. I know, everyone else has moved on, and we did get what might be two second rounders, at least one highly placed, but it would have gone down smoother had Waddell not overpromised on Fox. Dougie started slow, but came on, and despite not being flawless in the D zone, he hits, and scores goals in massive numbers. IMO Dougie is a keeper that justifies a lot of that trade. As with Skinner it was rough watching Lindholm finally bust out and that along with the Fox walk still leaves this total trade hard to read, at least until the 2nd rounders play out over the next 4-5 years. But the team did get tougher and Ferland added goals early to go with his team leading hits. This one is still hard to grade, but could end up being a positive despite the drawbacks. 

 

7. Warren Foegele. I tend to think this was a coach's decision, but the GM ultimately makes these calls. Despite not scoring during most of the year, and posting a team worst -17, sticking with this rookie, paid off at the end, and IMO will pay off bigger starting next year and beyond. Time will tell, but Foegele put in 3 of his 10 goals in the last 6 games of the regular season, then 5 more in the first 11 games of the playoffs. He, along with everyone, faltered vs Boston, but in the last 6 game of the regular season and the first 11 games of the play-offs he put up 8 goals and 12 points in 17 games. He won't keep that pace up next year probably, but I'd bet on 20 goals and 40 plus points without a lot of PP time next year. 

 

8. Calvin DeHaan. Seems like TD wanted this guy, but again, give the GM credit. Not only is DeHaan a hugely solid puck moving D man, but he added a lot of thump, and fit in with the room. He also in theory allows for further trades. This was an impossible to predict outside the box move. And signing him as a UFA we gave away no assets. 

 

Am I missing a move? Probably. But taking all of those moves together really does argue for giving Waddell an A. 

 

Can he fix the PP and add to the forward skill and keep the goalies producing? If so then I'd ordain him long term. But for last year, I'll bust out the A.

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1 hour ago, remkin said:

1. Hired Brind'Amour. What can I add really, except that going with a rookie head coach, even one like Brind'Amour was a risky move. At the time it really looked like just no one really wanted to GM or coach for the Committee, so we just looked around the room and promoted guys. But, he was hired, and it was the masterstroke to rule the rest. There is no question that Brind'Amour is reason #1 that this team so dramatically overachieved. But the coach hire, is typically credited to the GM who hired him.

 

 

This is the only one i'll disagree with - remember Brind'Amour was named coach before Waddell was named GM.  Of course Waddell may have been the brains behind it anyway, but not knowing, i personally can't credit this coach hire to him.

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4 minutes ago, realmdrakkar said:

 

This is the only one i'll disagree with - remember Brind'Amour was named coach before Waddell was named GM.  Of course Waddell may have been the brains behind it anyway, but not knowing, i personally can't credit this coach hire to him.

True. It's hard to know with the committee approach how much of what is who. Waddell was the President and there was no GM at that point. I guess if it failed Waddell would have drawn the fire so I guess I just give him the credit. 

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10 minutes ago, Canesfanforever said:

We are Back for game 6 ? YES WE ARE ! 

 

 

We’ve got a thread going in the Canes System forum

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24 minutes ago, AWACSooner said:

We’ve got a thread going in the Canes System forum

And what is that, 2 days old now?

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1 hour ago, KJUNKANE said:

And what is that, 2 days old now?

So?

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1 hour ago, AWACSooner said:

So?

Been seen, why repeat?  You want to go back to game 4 vs Islanders? I was agreeing with you AWACS, and just pointing out to Cff that that was old news, and I'm trying to keep up with Checkers, but we seem to be recycling things. Chill out.

Edited by KJUNKANE

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17 hours ago, remkin said:

Just to be a touch contrarian, I do want to see a bit more before ordaining Waddell. It is hard with a committee to know who is pulling the strings for one thing. And we still need some time to see if he can take us that next step. OK, OK, I'm partly just playing devil's advocate. The coach clearly gets an A, but does the GM too? Probably. But the ordination is a multi-year degree and Waddell just finished Freshman year. Very strong year, but not perfect.

 

 

If he is fluent in classic Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic, then he's ready for ordination.  :)

 

But seriously, I'm just pulling back my intense criticism a little bit, which started before this GM job.  I wasn't happy with the operations stuff either.  I still am not, although that's not his bailiwick anymore.  Where's the damn organ anyway?

 

But, yeah, remkin...  Dundon made it known it was a committee.  Credit to the committee.  Not sure what DW's role was, but surely it is significant.  He clearly didn't veto the Nino trade -- a move that was critical to getting this team IN the playoffs.  So maybe, "First do no harm"?  We can start there with the praise.  Beyond that, unknown what the structure is of the decision making, and that may ultimately be a secret weapon of the team.  The smart NHL people said The Committee would be a disaster.  At least initially, it isn't.

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On 5/27/2019 at 8:05 AM, wxray1 said:

 

But, yeah, remkin...  Dundon made it known it was a committee.  Credit to the committee.  Not sure what DW's role was, but surely it is significant.  He clearly didn't veto the Nino trade -- a move that was critical to getting this team IN the playoffs.  So maybe, "First do no harm"?  We can start there with the praise.  Beyond that, unknown what the structure is of the decision making, and that may ultimately be a secret weapon of the team.  The smart NHL people said The Committee would be a disaster.  At least initially, it isn't.

I am thinking Waddell probably deserves more credit than I implied though. The word was that he wore down the Wild GM by staying on the Nino-Rask trade incessantly until he finally capitulated, and by sheer luck I actually ran into Waddell when he was picking up Martinook and he told me he was working on a trade. He had to be central to the mechanics of the big off season trade last year.

 

The Committee though set the tone that sure seemed to be set by Brind'Amour. The feel I get was that TD was the main man behind getting DeHaan, and of course approving all trades. The Skinner thing looked real bad, but I'm guessing Waddell really had his hand tied on that one. Brind'Amour and probably TD wanted Skinner gone before camp. And Skinner himself used his NTC to force Waddell into a bad negotiating position. He had to take what he could get. Of course in retrospect, that move looks better, especially as we are not now faced with the fan pressure to sign him to a big overpay, which IMO someone will. 

 

I guess my point is that the sample size is still not big enough to head into the off season with utter confidence that we have the GM of the year. Still, I'm also no longer fearful that we'll get taken, especially since our last trade we did the taking.

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