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RonnieFranchise

Is Cam Ward Done?

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He's been pretty darn good over the last 20 games, but he stunk up the show tonight.

Unfortunately, we needed this one. But to say he is done is ludicrous, one bad game and a bad goal against TB shortside doesn't deep-six an entire career. I've seen us chase Brodeur and eliminate Jersey from the playoffs, but somehow they hung on to him. I wonder why? (Cam's not Brodeur, I know that, before that gets pointed out)

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I think this is the core problem - how many games has Cam played in a row - something like 14 or 15? It would be a different story if he had 5-10 years under his belt, but he's still young and learning.

it's either 19 or 20..

(not directed to you Gruss)

ward's been outstanding of late, just picked a bad time to have a not so good game. give the guy a break guys..

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No Cam is not done

We have no backup goalie, and Cam has had to play pretty much every game since the All-Star

He's not going to do amazing every night, and hes not going to stop every shot...we need solid D to help that

He can only do so much if the rest of the team is not going to help.

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Hedican and Wallin need to retire for starters. Neither can keep the puck inside the zone on a powerplay. The puck always seems to mysteriously jump over their sticks more often than anyone else. Both have been caught standing around watching goals being scored against - uncountable times.

Cam Ward makes a few stellar saves and then coughs up a softie from the top of the circle and the Canes lose by one. Do the math. That's become a recurring problem. He isn't a goalie they can count on so heavily just because he had a hot streak during the cup run. They need to reconsider a two-goalie system or else trade him for someone steadier. They had a similar shots-on-goal to shots-scored inversion in the first TB game. You could say they just ran up against hot goaltending. Or you could say the Canes got off a lot of non-quality soft shots. And you could say Ward has a consistency problem. Even though the team defense sucks more often than it plays well, a 75% save percentage isn't good enough. Sure several of the goals were tough shots, but he needs to come up bigger than he did tonight.

And if Cullen wasn't in game shape, was it worth it for the face-offs and a possible shoot-out? On the short-handed goal he was drifting backwards as the Florida player skated past him. By the time Cullen turned around it was too late. I wonder if the five-forward powerplay is really worth it. Early on I wished that Brookbank or Conboy had been in the lineup to get a fight going and get the Canes' blood pumping harder - wake them from their semi-comatose states they were in for much of the game. I'm sure this will be talked about during the offseason - whether it was smart to bring back the injured guys or leave in the Rats who got them a comfortable cushion in first place.

Speaking of powerplays, The Canes got nine to zero for the Panthers. It was as if the refs were making up for the horrible calls in the Washington game. The officiating has been the worst this year I have ever seen.

Cole can't play anymore - except for making hits he is pretty much a non-contributor.

The injuries? Either somebody had a bunch of voodoo dolls or else they need to hire a better conditioning coach. They absolutely shattered the record for lost man-games. On the bright side, Cullen and Williams and Brind'Amour and Whitney will have plenty of time to rest and recuperate - and play golf.

My final comment is that I saw very little passion on either team's part throughout most of the game. For Florida it was understandable. The game was the Canes for the taking - they even got nine powerplay opps - and they just didn't seem to want it badly enough. They seemed to be in a practice or something. Their lack of fire and determination to win was pretty evident. If the Caps win their (what, eigth in a row is it?) they deserve it. They're playing like they want to be in the playoffs and the Canes haven't been. A terrible time for a slump - losing three of the last four games in a very tight playoff race. I don't expect the Caps to choke tomorrow - Florida will be tired going up to DC. The embarrassment of leading the division for nearly the entire season and then coughing up a five-point lead to miss the playoffs with four games left will be even more intense than last season's debacle.

Pretty sad end to the game and probably the season - many fans booing and hissing. A handful of Canes sitting dejectedly on the bench as the PA guy announced the three stars - all Panthers.

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No, He's fine, he just picked a bad game to have a bad game on, but in reality all goalies have them even Broduer. The question in my mind is WHY did Laviolette not go to Grahame after the third went in? By that time it was evident that he was having a bad game by just looking at the shot difference.... I know theres the thing about making him stick it out and building confidence... but now he is going to go into the off season thinking that after all this he is the reason they did not make the playoffs... Laviolette NEVER pulls Cam fast enough to make a difference, the irony is that Grahame plays really good games when he gets swapped in, just not when he starts. Usually there is 5 goals + on the board before JG gets put in, handing him a game that is unwinnable. I agree with starting Cam tonight, I think Cam is a great goalie and will serve us well. There is no need to replace him, but we have a backup goalie, and if the starter only saves 7 out of 10, then you stick him in while he can win the game still. I ALMOST left at the start of the 3rd when Cam was still in goal.

On a side note, the free hat was pretty nice.

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Oh yeah, and some of the fancy stuff the canes seemed to be trying was not working for them, we were trying to fake and deke and they were reading us like a book. The other thing was WHERE WAS THE HITTING??? I felt like I was watching a non-checking rec hockey game, not NHL.But still, they had a good effort. I blame Lavi for not putting Grahame in, also for not playing Brookbank to start a fight to spark us, etc.

ppl blaming Cam and calling for him to be traded are wrong, blame Lavi for not knowing when to sub him.

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This thread is disgusting. It is not any better than the threads that got locked about Grahame.

Cam has carried this team when we were letting him face 40+ shots a night

Without Cam Ward this team is without 74 points. :angry:

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No.

1 - Cam is still young, though i dont want to say he is inexperienced seeing as he has 2 full seasons a Cup and a Conn Smythe under his belt. Give him more time and he can become the player you all want him to be. Not guranteeing he will be the best ever but he will be a great goalie, he just needs more time to mature.

2 - The defense has been terrible for all season, yet people continually blame Cam. If you have 2-3 breakaways coming against you most nights, the chances are you'll let in a few goals. The shorthanded goal tonight would not have ocurred if Cullen wasnt the last man back.

3 - It would be a bad decision to throw in the towel on Cam. Who else would we go to next sesason? Its not like anyone here has faith if Grahame were to take over, and though some would like to see Leights get a shot I dont think he'll do much better than Cam could have. The only other way we could get a decent goalie is by Free Agency or Trade.

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I don't think you'll see JG back again next year. I think we will have Cam and Leighton.

The sad thing for me is that this was my last game with you all. I am getting out of the military and moving up to Portland OR to work in IT. I would have loved to see at least one playoff game, but lets be real, the Caps deserve it more if they win tommorow, and I don't think even if we got in, we would see another stanley cup this year. I had some great times watching the canes play the last 2 years, and I will be rooting for them still, but from Portland on the Center Ice Package.

For the Caps fans reading this, if you win tomorrow, go all the way...

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But does one person but me at least agree that Lavi does not pull Cam quick enough? I remember at least one game this year where Cam let in 5 goals in the first (I think it was the first) before he put in Grahme. Grahme is a show stopper as a sub, he usually stops the bleeding. I expect Cam to screw up every now and again, all goalies do, but the key is to get him out before it gets unmanageable. WHY WAS HE IN NET IN THE THIRD?

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But does one person but me at least agree that Lavi does not pull Cam quick enough? I remember at least one game this year where Cam let in 5 goals in the first (I think it was the first) before he put in Grahme. Grahme is a show stopper as a sub, he usually stops the bleeding. I expect Cam to screw up every now and again, all goalies do, but the key is to get him out before it gets unmanageable. WHY WAS HE IN NET IN THE THIRD?

4 goals isnt enough to pull a goalie unless you are in the first period with very little shots against. Heck, Ive seen coaches let a goalie stay in even after 7 goals. Grahame wouldnt have done much better, and besides the damage was already done, 4 goals was all Florida needed.

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4 goals isnt enough to pull a goalie unless you are in the first period with very little shots against. Heck, Ive seen coaches let a goalie stay in even after 7 goals. Grahame wouldnt have done much better, and besides the damage was already done, 4 goals was all Florida needed.

That is why he should have been pulled after 3 in a game like this, I think it was 3 Goals Allowed on 10 shots? Cmon! A game of this importance?

From what I have seen JG does a good job in playing clean up, but he can't wipe goals off the board no-one can.

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I think this is the core problem - how many games has Cam played in a row - something like 14 or 15? It would be a different story if he had 5-10 years under his belt, but he's still young and learning.

This was his 20th consecutive start. He was due a bad game but who coulda known that? You? Me? I think not. Good effort by our boys, just not good enough.

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I think Cam to a large extent is still living off the Cup run. He got hot in the playoffs. It happens. Ask Marty Gerber, who has now been run out of TWO towns because of the exact situation - with Giguere in Anaheim, with Ward in Carolina. But FAR too often this season you look at the postgame box and see .850, .800, .790 next to his save percentage - that doesn't cut it (23 times this season he was under 90%). 3 goals and 17 shots against should win you a game every single time. It was a weak goal against Tampa that put us in this do or die situation to begin with, and he just flat didn't make the stops he needed to tonight.

I hate to have to make this my first post here... but we need to bring in a veteran to AT LEAST push him a little. I thought Graham would do it, but he's apparently too far in the organizational doghouse.

And on a side note - marketing department - first, making the players sign autographs on the ice after a game like this - poor form. Don't take a win and a feel-good moment for granted. Have a contingency plan in case they lost. The fans, instead of celebrating a happy moment meeting the guys, instead looked like vultures snagging trophies and asking for autographs 5 minutes after a brutal loss. Second, recognize the realities of the playoff situation before you make the homepage for your site an advertisement for playoff tickets we probably won't need. That was an unnecessary punch in the gut after sitting through tonight.

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the first goal i dont blame cam for, the team kind of stopped because everyone in the entire arena thought the penalty was on fla......the second goal was a good chance, but COULD have been stopped.....the other 2 goals were awful....should have been stopped....cam played terrible tonight.....i'm a big cam fan, but he lost us the game tonight

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He has to stop at least one of those shots. Didn't you see both Vokoun and Anderson make countless spectacular type saves while Ward made none.

Finally, someone with hockey sense. We had 47 shots on goal and I don't here anyone talking about the Panthers lack of D. I don't care if Florida had 17 breakaways, Cam can't let in 4 goals in a game that decides if they make the playoffs.....Okay that's a little rough. But, put in in perspective.....Philly is now in the playoffs, because their goalie shut out the Devils in a game the Devils desparately wanted, 22 shots on goal and not one went in. Boston is now in the playoffs, because their goalie allowed only 1 goal on 18 shots on the road against Ottawa who also needed a win for playoff position. The first goal and the short hander were stops that a top notch goalie will make 90% of the time. He needed to stop one of those and didn't.

Cam will be fine, but he needs a guality backup to push him and sub for him, which is what I've been saying all year. Fact is, Cam didn't get it done down the stretch, and his teammates take equal blame. A hot goalie is what makes the difference in big games, and Cam just wasn't hot tonite.

What a bummer.

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Can't blame it all on Cam. It's time for a defensive overhaul.

Hedican-retire

Wesley-retire

Wallin-trade

Gleason- re-sign

Kaberle-trade

Bring up Casey Borer permanently. Give Brookbank/Conboy a hell of a lot more ice time, they deserve it.

JR needs to sign Aaron Ward and that will fill a big hole

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And on a side note - marketing department - first, making the players sign autographs on the ice after a game like this - poor form. Don't take a win and a feel-good moment for granted. Have a contingency plan in case they lost. The fans, instead of celebrating a happy moment meeting the guys, instead looked like vultures snagging trophies and asking for autographs 5 minutes after a brutal loss. Second, recognize the realities of the playoff situation before you make the homepage for your site an advertisement for playoff tickets we probably won't need. That was an unnecessary punch in the gut after sitting through tonight.

I'm glad someone finally said something about that. Piss poor that our organization made the players come out after that. Inexcusable as far as I'm concerned.

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My $0.02:

Ward reminds me a lot of Jake Delhomme, for you Carolina Panther fans...brilliant at times, but is often inconsistent. The book on Ward ever since he became our #1 goalie is that he can make incredible saves, but let in the easy ones. I've seen it this whole season and it happened again tonight...I don't blame him for the breakaway, but that shorthanded goal should not have happened. This isn't just about tonight, I've seen it all of this year and all of last year.

Is he entirely to blame? No. We also have an offense that's wildly inconsistent, we'll look like world beaters one night, and other nights, like tonight, we can't even make tape-to-tape passes. The whole team is just too inconsistent.

As far as Ward goes, I seriously want to see the 'Canes pursue someone else to get in here and challenge him for the #1 job. I know he's a hard worker but the fact is that he's had it too easy here, there hasn't been anyone behind him to seriously challenge since Gerber left.

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My $0.02:

Ward reminds me a lot of Jake Delhomme, for you Carolina Panther fans...brilliant at times, but is often inconsistent. The book on Ward ever since he became our #1 goalie is that he can make incredible saves, but let in the easy ones. I've seen it this whole season and it happened again tonight...I don't blame him for the breakaway, but that shorthanded goal should not have happened. This isn't just about tonight, I've seen it all of this year and all of last year.

Is he entirely to blame? No. We also have an offense that's wildly inconsistent, we'll look like world beaters one night, and other nights, like tonight, we can't even make tape-to-tape passes. The whole team is just too inconsistent.

As far as Ward goes, I seriously want to see the 'Canes pursue someone else to get in here and challenge him for the #1 job. I know he's a hard worker but the fact is that he's had it too easy here, there hasn't been anyone behind him to seriously challenge since Gerber left.

Bingo!

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Can't blame it all on Cam. It's time for a defensive overhaul.

Hedican-retire

Wesley-retire

Wallin-trade

Gleason- re-sign

Kaberle-trade

Bring up Casey Borer permanently. Give Brookbank/Conboy a hell of a lot more ice time, they deserve it.

JR needs to sign Aaron Ward and that will fill a big hole

To even call out the D on a night when your goalies save percentage was south of .700 is a joke. 4 goals on 17 shots, are you freaking kidding me. Cam ward pulled the "Mama Cass" special tonight.

Losing 3 of 4 with the SE title on the line...imo...they desrerve to play some golf. What was missing(imo) was the edge we had before Whitney and Williams rushed back. Conboy and Brookbank have been part of the spark...

Whitney: tonight looked a little better, but in the Washington game, well his play smelled like cap.

Williams: Save it for later. One period and done for who knows how long.

Two bad/dumb moves.

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It's hard to make heads or tails of Cam's season this year. He had a great December and a nice stretch over the past 25 games...up until tonite. But in the middle, his 3.30 or so GAA was simply horrendous. He once again ends the year in the bottom third of starting goalies statistically, and before anyone blames our defense, keep in mind that Carolina generally outshot its opponents this year, so some unlucky goalie was getting it on the other side. Cam so much as said he struggled much of this year, and you've heard that quote from Forslund, Tracey, his teammates and Lavi at points in time during the season.

Cam reminds me of the shortstop who leads the league in miraculous plays, but also leads the league in errors. Then a bunch of novice fans swoop in and blame the pitcher for allowing too many hard ground balls, or the field crew for not manicuring the infield properly.

Cam seems to fight concentration period to period, and I often sense that he is at his worst when he is thinking vs. reacting to what is occuring on the ice. Cat quick when he wants to be, but then will forget to guard the post on a wrap around. I think his shootout woes bear this out....He has a lot of time to think about what the shooter will do and as opposed to reacting to the shooter, he is anticipating some specific move.

So is Cam a young rising star in the NHL...Or a comet that burned brightly as it crossed the sky during the summer of 2006 only to fizzle out quickly barely to be seen again. Probably too early to tell. Barasso has done well helping Cam out of the horrific funk he was in during mid-season. And Cam has improved handling the puck behind the net, albeit it is still and adventure for him. And yes, he did win a shootout. Cam earned an A+ in December, and B+ the last 25 games of the season, and a C- for the balance of the season. Overall grade is B-, which is actually a bit better than his stats would suggest.

In my view, nothing wrong with Cam that some good competition for the #1 job couldn't cure. Graham being his friend is no help at all. Cam doesn't need a friend, he needs someone to push him....everyday, to his limits.

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The fact is that our #1 goaltender, who had a day and a half to prepare for Florida, was out-played by their back-up goaltender who didn't even know he would play until after the first twenty minutes of the game.

As many times as Ward has stolen games for this team this season, he has also been the sole reason this team has lost other games. I'm not sure if a better back-up is really what this team needs, especially if Francis or Rutherford decides to keep some of the older players around another year. They may need to hit the market in search of a true #1, atleast for the next year or two until Ward is really ready to be our franchise goaltender.

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A dreadful game when it counted....but what about the guy that got us here in the last 2 months? Seriously, think about some of the games he's played as a major contributor during the hot stretch.

He's a keeper, and I believe his funk earlier this year is over. Focus on the last 2 months, and that makes the answer to the question obvious.

NO HE'S NOT DONE! Tired? probably. Needs a backup (or even timeshare)? probably. Done? You're kidding, right?

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