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micheelob

Ward is average at best!

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The thing is the team was playing like that towards the end of december and beginning of this month, so it is possible. I do agree changes need to be made though. When I said consistent scoring and defense that was a kinder and more general way of saying we can't win scoring 1 goal a game and turning the puck over in our zone. Obviously if we are playing well we'll have both of those and people would be happy.

Yes, it is possible for this team to play well. I see it like you do. That is what is most frustrating to me. For some reason, this group is unable to play with any consistency. It is repetitive for at least the last two seasons. Nov. 2007, then improve in spring, then falter in the last two weeks to miss the playoffs. This year, under Lavi, 3 down, 3 up, 3 down in Nov. See it within game against the Flyers under Mo, now see it going from 4 up to 5 down under Mo. Ward's inconsistencies feed off of the team and the players off of him. When things are going well, everything has to go well for the Canes. As soon as there is a lapse or let down, the team lets it get to each of them like, "here we go again." It is far from just Cam, but he is an important part of the inconsistency.

There must be a lack of trust going in all directions within the team. This impacts the will of the team to dig in and work to pick each other up because they expect another let down to occur. Forwards may over try and cheat in hopes of creating chances or over skate with the puck trying to do too much since they don't trust others but know they need to score. Of course, these actions lead to fewer goals. What is needed by the team is a shake up that creates a basis for trust. Changing the coach did not go far enough to rally this locker room. The basis for trust can come through the creation of a power scoring forward line that the team knows can put the puck in the net if needed, or a shut down D pairing that the team can trust to take over a game when the other goalie is hot, etc., or the team needs a goalie that provides that rock on which team trust can be built because he is unflappable. The team is lacking any one of these 3 elements and because of that no element plays with consistency and each element looks worse because of it and that cannot be adjusted by staying the course with the same personnel that is on the team. Consistency will begin to show when the team first has that element that they can rely to overcome mistakes or change the game when needed. For the Canes, that is going to require changes on the ice.

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There must be a lack of trust going in all directions within the team. This impacts the will of the team to dig in and work to pick each other up because they expect another let down to occur. Forwards may over try and cheat in hopes of creating chances or over skate with the puck trying to do too much since they don't trust others but know they need to score. Of course, these actions lead to fewer goals. What is needed by the team is a shake up that creates a basis for trust. Changing the coach did not go far enough to rally this locker room. The basis for trust can come through the creation of a power scoring forward line that the team knows can put the puck in the net if needed, or a shut down D pairing that the team can trust to take over a game when the other goalie is hot, etc., or the team needs a goalie that provides that rock on which team trust can be built because he is unflappable. The team is lacking any one of these 3 elements and because of that no element plays with consistency and each element looks worse because of it and that cannot be adjusted by staying the course with the same personnel that is on the team. Consistency will begin to show when the team first has that element that they can rely to overcome mistakes or change the game when needed. For the Canes, that is going to require changes on the ice.

I agree with you here. The thing is, looking at what Rutherford said yesterday, he's still deciding if the shakeup will be selling a player at the deadline or making a move to try to compete this year. My thinking is he will be selling at the deadline. He is well aware of the advantage sellers have at the deadline and the advantage of making a move to help the team about a month before, example with the Corvo Eaves trade. He said he wants to wait for the week leading up to the deadline so I think we will be selling.

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I agree with you here. The thing is, looking at what Rutherford said yesterday, he's still deciding if the shakeup will be selling a player at the deadline or making a move to try to compete this year. My thinking is he will be selling at the deadline. He is well aware of the advantage sellers have at the deadline and the advantage of making a move to help the team about a month before, example with the Corvo Eaves trade. He said he wants to wait for the week leading up to the deadline so I think we will be selling.

Totally agree with you here and posted a similar comment in the "rumor" thread :) .

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My 2 cents...forget the last 5 games when judging Ward, except in the sense of including them in the overall picture...otherwise there is bound to be an overreaction.

Ward has showed steady improvement, as has been frequently mentioned. Before the slide, he was about 2.5 GAA and .915 Sv%. I think that's where he's at this year and where he will end up. His major area needing improvement, and this has been mentioned during telecasts, is mental focus. I think this is why he so often gives up the first goal. This team used to come from behind no problem when it was scoring goals...now, not so much. That hole hurts. Work on this and I think he will continue to improve.

Ward has actually kept us in and won us a few games this year when the offense has failed us, more than in previous seasons.

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needing a break is an excuse. he needs to improve, not take a break. this is the NHL. play hard and earn/keep your spot or get replaced. please.

Have you noticed that his play only started to deteriorate after Leighton all but disappeared off the face of the earth? Sure, Ward had the odd soft goal or bad game here and there when Leighton actually saw action, but how many times has Leighton played since Maurice took over? What, once or twice in twenty or so games? The same thing happened when Mo was in Toronto. Look at Andrew Raycroft in '06-'07 and Vesa Toskala in '07-'08. They played an ungodly amount of games for goalies of their caliber. The only goalies who should be seeing 65-70 games a year are the Patrick Roys, Martin Brodeurs, and Roberto Luongos of the league.

As of late, Ward's played the majority of the games including back-to-backs. When you combine all these games played with the defensive breakdowns we've seen of late, he's obviously not going to be as sharp as he was earlier in the year.

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Have you noticed that his play only started to deteriorate after Leighton all but disappeared off the face of the earth? Sure, Ward had the odd soft goal or bad game here and there when Leighton actually saw action, but how many times has Leighton played since Maurice took over? What, once or twice in twenty or so games? The same thing happened when Mo was in Toronto. Look at Andrew Raycroft in '06-'07 and Vesa Toskala in '07-'08. They played an ungodly amount of games for goalies of their caliber. The only goalies who should be seeing 65-70 games a year are the Patrick Roys, Martin Brodeurs, and Roberto Luongos of the league.

As of late, Ward's played the majority of the games including back-to-backs. When you combine all these games played with the defensive breakdowns we've seen of late, he's obviously not going to be as sharp as he was earlier in the year.

He started 20 straight games to finish last season though, and if I recall was pretty solid during that stretch...in fact it was just what we needed from our #1 goaltender. So I surely don't want to hear how 11 straight this season is "too much."

But I agree that good teams and good goalies have reliable backups, and Maurice has made it clear that he doesn't think much of Michael Leighton seeing that we haven't seen him in forever. Ward is indeed sharpest it seems like at the start of every season, and then obviously his play slides down when the schedule gets to be grinding. I guess he's just a goalie that needs to only start 6-7 games in a row, and then get a break. I'm fine with that...but Maurice and others expect more.

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He started 20 straight games to finish last season though, and if I recall was pretty solid during that stretch...in fact it was just what we needed from our #1 goaltender. So I surely don't want to hear how 11 straight this season is "too much."

Touch

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ward needs help from his team,,but is getting none,,no goals my friend, that is the problem here,,if the canes could score three are more goals ,,what a different our record would be,,the canes would be right there with the caps,,check the goals scored in the standings,,we are lucky to be where we are now in the standings,,untill JR gets us a couple of goal scorers nothing will change,,

as for cam if he could get a few goals he would be under less pressure during the game,,knowing that he could have a mistake and know that that one mistake would not cost him the game,,

i blame jr and his salary cap for the present low scoring team,,pick up one goal scorer and the team could show a complete turn around,,

ok friends lets defend jr,,,,,but think first,,,,maybe we should fire the gm

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Uhhh did all you Wardo haters watch the Leafs game???? Wardo is a great goalie, no doubt about it. Con Smythe, Stanley Cup, and very young. Give him some offensive and defensive support, and you'll see him develop consistency. He has "it".

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ward needs help from his team,,but is getting none,,no goals my friend, that is the problem here,,if the canes could score three are more goals ,,what a different our record would be,,the canes would be right there with the caps,,check the goals scored in the standings,,we are lucky to be where we are now in the standings,,untill JR gets us a couple of goal scorers nothing will change,,

as for cam if he could get a few goals he would be under less pressure during the game,,knowing that he could have a mistake and know that that one mistake would not cost him the game,,

i blame jr and his salary cap for the present low scoring team,,pick up one goal scorer and the team could show a complete turn around,,

ok friends lets defend jr,,,,,but think first,,,,maybe we should fire the gm

JR is not getting fired, he has an ownership interest in the team. I have been on the need for a power scoring winger for this team to complement Staal and take pressure off of Ward for some time. Having a line that could be relied upon to score and set the tone in a game or score to spark a comeback would take pressure off of the entire team. Unfortunately, the chances of getting this type of player are not great due to typical decisions by management. If the Canes were closer to contending for the playoffs I think that they might actually pull the trigger on this type of move, instead we get more mediocrity. A strange catch 22 the management is creating.

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Uhhh did all you Wardo haters watch the Leafs game???? Wardo is a great goalie, no doubt about it. Con Smythe, Stanley Cup, and very young. Give him some offensive and defensive support, and you'll see him develop consistency. He has "it".

Ok, I am far from a Ward hater, I actually like him a lot. Give any goalie O and D support and he can look great. Ward has glimpses of brilliance, even a string here or there. That pulls fans in and creates unrealistic expectations for him. Ward also goes the other way and lets in soft goals from angles on the ice that are his alone to stop more than we should see even at this early point in his career. Ward has the potential to be a solid top 11 to 15 goalie (not top 10) for a number of years and that is all that is needed in the NHL. I do not expect him to ever be a Vezna winner the way that Tripp will say, but that is not a necessity in net.

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To be better than average he needs to put many games like tonite's together!!! He also had alot of support tonite!! But he did look much better than average tonite!!KUDOS Wardo!Keep wearing that new shield!! (or old won you brought back out,,whatever it is!)

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I respectfully dissent to your opinion. All players grow and develop, and even though Cam has done all that he has done, he is still developing much of his style and performance while being our primary netminder.

The shutout tonight was a prime example of Wardo greatness, that wasn't needing any support from anyone. He stopped most of those great leafs chances all by his lonesome to keep the Canes in it. You argue that he is inconsistent....ok, so he is. I say, the older and wiser he grows (he's just a kid), the more consistent he will become.

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Great game by the whole team tonight. Hopefully we can put a nice streak together and not go on a 5 game skid after that!

One game doesn't change everything but it's a start.

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I respectfully dissent to your opinion. All players grow and develop, and even though Cam has done all that he has done, he is still developing much of his style and performance while being our primary netminder.

The shutout tonight was a prime example of Wardo greatness, that wasn't needing any support from anyone. He stopped most of those great leafs chances all by his lonesome to keep the Canes in it. You argue that he is inconsistent....ok, so he is. I say, the older and wiser he grows (he's just a kid), the more consistent he will become.

We see the same thing. He will grow and develop, that is why I say the potential to be 11 to 15, for now he is between 22 and 27 based on GAA and SV%. He will have nights like tonight and also nights like Ottawa and that makes him slightly below average for now with the potential to be slightly above average in his career, not looking at one specific night that will be swayed by the emotion of the high or low with tonight being a high. What Ward is not is a franchise goalie, meaning that simply having him on your team immediately makes you a playoff contender and gives you the opportunity to win night in and night out regardless of who is on the ice in front of him. Those goalies are rare and I often think that the fans see Ward as a young Brodeur or Roy and he isn't. That's not a knock against Cam, it's a complement to those rare guys who can consistently win games for teams just by being between the pipes. Cam is a deserving starting goalie in the NHL, average for the best in the world at what he does and I think that's pretty good.

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Maybe Cam is no Brodeur or Roy, but I think he has the potential to develop into one. I don't think we'll know for a few more years. Heck, he just learned how to control his rebounds this season, and I think he is 100% improved in that area.

Look, even Brodeur and Roy had bad nights. So does Lundqvuist. It happens. I think Lunqvuist is a "franchise" goalie, but he felt so off in that game this season, he pulled himself. That was the first time I'd ever seen that.

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Cam has been above average all year, and I think he's been the best playet on this team easily, unfortunately it doesn't show unless you get the wins, and sometimes that is out of his reach.

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Cam has been above average all year, and I think he's been the best playet on this team easily, unfortunately it doesn't show unless you get the wins, and sometimes that is out of his reach.

21st in the league, even after last night's shutout, in both SV% and GAA, those are play based stats and not win based. 21st overall for the season is average.

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Maybe Cam is no Brodeur or Roy, but I think he has the potential to develop into one. I don't think we'll know for a few more years. Heck, he just learned how to control his rebounds this season, and I think he is 100% improved in that area.

Look, even Brodeur and Roy had bad nights. So does Lundqvuist. It happens. I think Lunqvuist is a "franchise" goalie, but he felt so off in that game this season, he pulled himself. That was the first time I'd ever seen that.

All goalies have off nights, so do all players for that matter, no problems there. The Boston game, for example, would be easily overlooked, a Saturday afternoon on the road blah, etc. if it was isolated and very infrequent. It is the streak of poor games along with the relative frequency of in game let downs, Edmonton in Nov. comes to mind, that limits Ward at this point in his development. I hope for the Canes that you are right and he develops into a hall of fame type of goalie.

Here's an interesting comparison, Mike Richter, a solid goalie who is not likely to get in the hockey hall of fame. A goalie who had success early in his career but ran hot and cold. Of course, Richter got more attention and accolades due to the NY market than Cam will ever get. I checked the stats and the early years of these two are not too far off. Richter gained more consistency over time and his GAA went down even when playing on lesser Rainja teams. If the Canes franchise gets a decade from Ward like the Rainja's got from Richter we will be very lucky.

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21st in the league, even after last night's shutout, in both SV% and GAA, those are play based stats and not win based. 21st overall for the season is average.

u are such a ward hater like others have said he is just a kid(24 years old) he gets better year after year his stats have gotten better each year. I think he will be a top 10 goalie in a few years it also doenst help him that at this age when he is still in his developmental stage that he doenst have a good back up that can step in and give him a break. If the canes want to get all they can out of ward they need to spend some $ and get a capable back up that has experience in the NHL say someone like andrew raycroft would be good.

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21st in the league, even after last night's shutout, in both SV% and GAA, those are play based stats and not win based. 21st overall for the season is average.

His numbers for most of the year have been much better though...it's just the recent slide that's taken his stats down.

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Average looked pretty good last night against the Leafs.

Average looked pretty good tonight against the Pens.

In every game that Cam has lost this year in regulation except for the earlier Leafs game, the Canes have scored 2 goals or less. It's easy to get on Cam, but a little goal support wouldn't hurt either. In fact, the only games this season that the Canes have lost AND scored more than 2 goals in regulation was that game and the Philly debacle with a minor league defensive corps.

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I hope all u Cam ward haters enjoyed those last 2 games against toronto and pittsburgh cam ward was an absolute beast and I think this is the cam ward we will see for the rest of the season.

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