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THN- 2009-10 regular season predictions

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I agree with Muir and I also think this is our best chance to win the Cup since 05-06 and probably for the next few years. We have a really solid team. If most everyone stays healthy and Cam is solid we should put up a division banner, at minimum.

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I agree with Muir and I also think this is our best chance to win the Cup since 05-06 and probably for the next few years. We have a really solid team. If most everyone stays healthy and Cam is solid we should put up a division banner, at minimum.

Me too, I dont see any of our divisional opponents getting any stronger, maybe a little weaker in some cases. I think we sured up the defense and what we may have given up in offense coming from the blueline, we might have gained with less pucks finding the back of our net. Itll be nice to not be among the league leaders in goals against for a change. :rolleyes:

Disclaimer: FINALLY! some real talk on this board! Woot.

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With what's listed, that leaves Pit, Wash, Phil, NJ, and Bos ahead of us. I'll give the Pittsburgh and Boston. I'm not so sure about the others left. Washington does have Ovechkin, but I'm not sold on how they are going to fair in goal. Philly added Public Enemy #1 but have a goalie commitee going. NJ lost Madden and Gionta and Brodeur is another year older but still great. My homer glasses have the Canes pegged in the 3 slot going into the season, but like my sig says...

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With what's listed, that leaves Pit, Wash, Phil, NJ, and Bos ahead of us. I'll give the Pittsburgh and Boston. I'm not so sure about the others left. Washington does have Ovechkin, but I'm not sold on how they are going to fair in goal. Philly added Public Enemy #1 but have a goalie commitee going. NJ lost Madden and Gionta and Brodeur is another year older but still great. My homer glasses have the Canes pegged in the 3 slot going into the season, but like my sig says...

I won't give Boston the nod over us. They've gotten signifigantly weaker defensively. Morris does not have the offensive upside to cover for the loss of A. Ward, I don't care what anyone says. He may score a few goals, but I guarantee you they give up more due to the loss of Ward. Also, the Kessel situation is coming to a head. That team is set to take a major step back this season, IMO.

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I won't give Boston the nod over us. They've gotten signifigantly weaker defensively. Morris does not have the offensive upside to cover for the loss of A. Ward, I don't care what anyone says. He may score a few goals, but I guarantee you they give up more due to the loss of Ward. Also, the Kessel situation is coming to a head. That team is set to take a major step back this season, IMO.

The Kessel situation may not sort itself anytime soon. Maybe not even until after the season starts so I agree there may be some question as to where Boston fits in to all speculation. I'm not sure I see them finshing 1st in the East again this coming year and it appears that the Pens have made enough changes to think they might have to battle for a top spot, it wont be a given.

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Realistically, we have a shot at the #1 seed...I see ALL of the Eastern contenders taking a step backward in many KEY areas (Philly and Caps in goal, especially) and the Pens losing Scuderi and Gill among others and the hangover will make a difference. Boston missing Kessel for half or all of the season, losing Ward and others dampers their chances. I thought Thomas and their team overachieved last year in a semi-weak division. Devils aren't any better. If Gaborik stays healthy NY could surprise some people. While I think our division has improved as a whole (not a difficult thing to do), I think it will serve us nicely that we play ATL, Tampa, and Florida 6 times. I think the SE is probably the weakest division in the East. Washington will continue to be an enigma...they have immense offensive talent but they don't click on the same cylinders we usually do -- something is off with their chemistry. We have solidified and balanced our defense in front of a good goalie with the pick-ups, trades and Maurice. Offensively, we have a variety of weapons and a mix of checkers and speed. Under the radar we have daft punk'ed our roster - harder, better, faster, stronger -- just not younger. I think we're in a good spot because if we do have a complete and total melt-down we have the necessary pieces to trade at the deadline to bring in good prospects and picks. If we stay healthy and don't break down, the 'Canes are a team the East will fear playing (we saw that in the playoffs). My prediction is #2 seed, Cole comes back really strong, Brind-Amour performs well on the 3rd line in his swan song, we pick up another top-flight winger between now and the trade deadline and make the ECF again. After this season we lose some players but our prospects have come a long way since our bare cupboard 05-06 run (Doug Weight trade did what it was supposed to do, but hurt depth long-term)...We're very very lucky to have a well-run small market team.

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I like all the optimism but I think I'll stay a little more guarded with mine. I like our chances as much as most other teams for a top spot but we've seen how easliy an injury or a top player underperforming can effect the whole team. IMO, we still have a few questions but JR did a good job of plugging holes and hppefully a couple of the young kids are ready to make the jump when needed.

This will be a good thread to re-visit after camp and then again around Christmas.

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I like our team a lot. But putting us ahead of Boston, Washington, NJ, Pittsburgh would require a first line winger, which we do not have. I think #6 is about right, though I would say #5. If Cam plays like he did at the end of the regular season and most of the playoffs though, anything is possible.

Put a legit first line winger on this team and I could put us as high as #1 with a straight face.

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I like our team a lot. But putting us ahead of Boston, Washington, NJ, Pittsburgh would require a first line winger, which we do not have. I think #6 is about right, though I would say #5. If Cam plays like he did at the end of the regular season and most of the playoffs though, anything is possible.

Put a legit first line winger on this team and I could put us as high as #1 with a straight face.

I see what you're saying, for sure. And I know I'm reaching here, but I see #15 being our "1st line winger" this season. I just get the feeling that he is going to have a dynamite season. The guy is primed to be a leading scorer in this league. He's got one of, if not the best, centers in the NHL feeding him the biscuit. He's breaking out this year. Put it in your book.

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Well since we had success at #6 last season, I guess I'm ok with this.

However, I would love to see us clinch the SE division this year and I think we can do it this season. Home Ice is big.

As of right now, my hopes for this team is that they get in the playoffs again and make another memorable deep run. There should be no more excuses, this team needs to start making the playoffs on a consistent basis now.

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Well since we had success at #6 last season, I guess I'm ok with this.

However, I would love to see us clinch the SE division this year and I think we can do it this season. Home Ice is big.

As of right now, my hopes for this team is that they get in the playoffs again and make another memorable deep run. There should be no more excuses, this team needs to start making the playoffs on a consistent basis now.

Couldn't agree more. There are no excuses now. We are a playoff team. I mean, for crying out loud, Nashville made the playoffs like 5 years in a row (up until last year). We should be near the top of the league standings with the roster we have. And to hell with having to battle back in the 2nd half of the season. Come out blazin', boys!

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Sure, 6 is a fair place to put us. I can see us falling anywhere from 3-6. If the media wants to pull as at 6, just fine with me, we are good underdogs. I will say Boston and Pittsburgh will be ahead of us. I think Philly will as well. Washington is a BIG maybe. We will see.

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Sure, 6 is a fair place to put us. I can see us falling anywhere from 3-6. If the media wants to pull as at 6, just fine with me, we are good underdogs. I will say Boston and Pittsburgh will be ahead of us. I think Philly will as well. Washington is a BIG maybe. We will see.

I think the Canes can win the SouthEast. So that puts em 3rd, but otherwise I think 4-5, so 6 isn't a crazy number. JR did a good job filling in the D and staying in budget, but I after losing more than 60 points from the blueline, I'm interested to see if the Canes can find some offense from some "other" sources (Samsonov mainly, hopefully Cole plays well, and maybe a Rat can chip in some).

Overall we have a solid team here in Carolina. I think the Canes have the players to get the job done, but someone's going to have to pick up the scoring, and I'm still unsure about the defense's mobility.

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Sounds pretty good, I will just be satisfied if we can consistently make the playoffs every year. For me we don't even have to go to the ECF or SCF every year, just get in the freakin show.

I think the Canes can win the SouthEast.

I can't wait to play the Crapitals

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I'm really excited about this season and feel like we have the potential to win the Division for sure and quite possibly the Conference. But like TSA said, one key injury or one main player not getting it done could change all that. Of course, that could work the other way as well. Suppose the Penns lose Crosby or the Bruins lose Thomas? all I can say is it should be a really interesting season. Bring it on !

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Eh, I'm not as optimistic as the rest, it appears (Big shocker, right? ;) )

While I do believe we'll make the playoffs and the race for the SE will be closer than it was last year, the Capitals have shown it doesn't matter who they have in net. As long as they have OV doing his thing, they're going to be successful. Unless Staal plays the entire season like he plays the 2nd half of every season, it'll be Washington's division again.

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Well if we can begin the season with 3/4 the chemistry we had at the end, adjust well to the roster changes, and build from there----maybe we will get out to a better start.

I think the first goal should be to go after Washington for the division title. We now have some guys who were new to the playoffs and have gotten the taste of it, so maybe all that will help. Plus they will have a whole season of playing Mo's system. Here is hoping !!

( Ice Frog do you know your avitar is perfect for you ? I can hear House every time I read your posts ! :lol: )

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As mentioned, I would predict 5th for us as currently constituted, 1st or 2nd with a top winger on board.

We do have a few key questions though.

1. The team has gradually lost firepower since the cup win, never really replacing Stillman or William's production. We tighted up our defensive play and that made a difference but we haven't added any significant firepower at forward since the cup. OK, we are probably not getting my winger, but we surely can't afford any slippage. Two guys I wonder about are Brind'Amour and Whitney. Whitney has shown no sign of slowing down, but age will catch him one of these years. Brind'Amour is probably the biggest controversy we have. If he can still play, we will be much better than advertised. If not, it will depend how bad and what is done about it.

On the flip side we have a few guys who could really step up their production: Cole, Cole, Cole and Cole to start with. If he regains even most of his prior form JR will be even more of a genius. Additionally Sammy and Jokinen could both beat their numbers from last year. I predict career type numbers from Cullen, and Walker doesn't have to do much to add more points. Ruutu could go either way, and LaRose needs to hold serve (I think he will).

Still, good depth, but not much top line talent after Staal and an aging Whitney.

2. Defense. On paper our defense looks pretty good. I think we'll be fine, but Babchuk won a few games for us. Kind of an unknown.

3. Goalie. This is the big one. Cam when "average at best" played a role in several losses. There were stretches each of the last 3 years with lots of soft goals. Was it Cam or the team? Chicken and egg debate, but he certainly improved his game as the team improved. If Cam's average and then stellar play were largely driving the team's destiny, then a sharp, healthy Cam could mean 5 more wins at least. That would have put us at #2 last year.

So, while I think a top winger would make us a true elite team, a top Cam Ward, no slippage from Whitney and the whole Brindy thing working out somehow, could easily see us move into the top 4.

To allow for some of these things not working out though, I go with #5.

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Point total ranges:

Staal = 80-90

Whitney = 70-80

Cole = 50-60

Cullen = 60

Larose = 30-40

Ruutu = 50-60

Jokinen = 45-55

Sammy = 45-55

Brindy = 30-60 (Biggest maybe)

TKO = 10-20

Conboy = 0-2

Walker = 15-30

Rat = 10-20

Corvo = 35-50

Gleason = 15

Pit-Kannon = 40-60

Ward = 20-30

Alberts = 10

Wallin = 10

Assuming everyone stays healthy, I think those numbers along with a good to great Wardo will win us the division. If Brindy pushes closer to the 60 number, and Wardo is great to excellent and maybe even Cole can regain form we could push for even higher, but IMO that is unrealistic. I dont see us beating Boston or Pittsburgh. I say the best we do is 3 to a possible 6 at the low end.

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