Gm18 Vs. Chi: Canes pull out 3-2 overtime win in Cam Ward’s return

The Hurricanes have struggled to find a rhythm of late, have struggled more than flourished, but along the way have found a way to grind out some points and stay just above .500. After an abysmal start in Arizona, the team surged late to at least steal an overtime loss point. Then after a couple tough losses, the Hurricanes capitalized against a struggling Blackhawks team to salvage a 1-2-1 road trip. Then in the first game of a home stand, the Hurricanes stumbled late but still picked up another overtime loss point. Finally on Monday night, the Hurricanes again capitalized on finding a struggling Blackhawks team on the schedule. Over the past six games, I would say that the Hurricanes have struggled much more than they have flourished, but along the way, they have scratched and clawed to a 2-2-2 mark. No doubt, the team will need to eventually find a higher gear and/or a run of wins, but if they do just maybe we will look back on this stretch where the team held things together during tough times and avoided digging a hole.   Canes win 3-2 against the Blackhawks The final entry in that log is of course the Hurricanes win on Monday night. The game truly had something for everyone. For those seeking some nostalgia for long-time Hurricanes netminder Cam Ward, they were rewarded with Ward playing well and making a number of good saves. For those living in the here and now, Scott Darling also played well. Sebastian Aho also continued to lead on the score sheet with two points including the game-winning goal...
Five current positives for the Carolina Hurricanes

Five current positives for the Carolina Hurricanes

First and foremost, Canes and Coffee would like to extend a big thank to all of the veterans in our community. Happy Veterans Day (belated since we did not post anything on Sunday), and thank you for all that you have done to protect our freedom!   After running out to a 3-1 lead after two periods and getting back to piling on shot after shot, the Hurricanes seemed to be on their way to a win to kick off the six-game home stand. So when things went awry in the third period, and the team ultimately lost in overtime, the game felt like a kick in the shins and flipped the mood for many back to negative. By no means do I think I should be able to tell people who they fell about their favorite hockey team and by no means do I think all is rosy right now. One need only read back through about a week of Daily Cup of Joe articles to arrive at the conclusion that my writing is balanced or maybe lately just bipolar. But at the same time that I have my share of reservations about the current state of the Carolina Hurricanes, I think it is also important to also recognize positives. So starting off a fresh week on a game day, here is a short list of current positives for the Carolina Hurricanes (in no particular order).   1) Martinook/Wallmark/Svechnikov This line continues to play well. The trio is very good on the forecheck right now with Martinook leading the way and has also done a decent job of...
‘What I’m Watching’ — Gm18 Vs. Chi: Canes face off against Blackhawks in Cam Ward’s return

‘What I’m Watching’ — Gm18 Vs. Chi: Canes face off against Blackhawks in Cam Ward’s return

In addition to the usual ongoing 82-game battle to try to push back up into the playoffs, the Carolina Hurricanes 2018-19 schedule will feature a number of homecomings for former fan favorites. With the departure of long-time favorites Cam Ward and Jeff Skinner and also younger starts Elias Lindholm and Noah Hanifin, the schedule is checkered with players returning to Raleigh as an opponent for the first time. The first of these games is arguably the biggest with Cam Ward’s return on Monday in a Blackhawks uniform. Cam Ward is nothing short of being a franchise icon. He was a key part in the pinnacle of the Carolina Hurricanes’ history and was one of the leaders in the era that followed. He has been both part of some of the highest highs and also right there with the Canes hockey community during some of the lowest of lows. But more than anything, Ward was always a class act, a good person and most certainly someone who I was always proud to have as part of our hockey community. History aside, the game is also a big one in the here and now. After beating the same Blackhawks to salvage as much as possible from a tough 1-2-1 road trip, the Hurricanes started a six-game home stand on Saturday against the Red Wings. After jump out to a lead and seemingly having two points in hand, the Hurricanes sagged in the third and ultimately lost in overtime, giving up a point in the process. That result makes Monday’s game even more critical in terms of capitalizing on home ice and...
Gm17 Vs. Det: Canes stumble late and convert lead into only an OTL point versus Detroit

Gm17 Vs. Det: Canes stumble late and convert lead into only an OTL point versus Detroit

Sometimes when a team picks up a point in an overtime loss, they more or less stole or earned a point in the standings. Other times, the losing team gave up a point to get one instead of two. After carrying a 3-1 lead into the third period against a Detroit team that played and traveled last night, the Hurricanes overtime loss on Saturday night to kick off a six-game home stand was clearly the latter. The game was fairly evenly played early on with a reasonable volume of shots in both directions. The Red Wings climbed onto the scoreboard first, when Andreas Anathasiou fired an unscreened one-timer through a leaky Scott Darling from the top of the face-off circle. From that distance and with no screen or traffic, a goalie should not be beaten right through the wickets. But the Hurricanes struck back when Brock McGinn outworked two Wings behind the goal and then later finished when a Haydn Fleury shot pin balled right to him. The back and forth first period finished with the Hurricanes posting an 18 to 14 advantage in shots on net and with a 1-1 score. In the second period, the Hurricanes put the pedal down. The Hurricanes drew two penalties early in the second period, peppered Detroit netminder Jonathan Bernier with shot after shot on the way to a 19 to 7 shot advantage in the period and were ultimately rewarded for their dominant play. First, Micheal Ferland finished from in front of the crease on the power play, and then Sebastian Aho and Teravainen again offered the assists on a goal...
‘What I’m Watching’ — Gm17 Vs. Det: Critical home stretch begins versus the Detroit Red Wings

‘What I’m Watching’ — Gm17 Vs. Det: Critical home stretch begins versus the Detroit Red Wings

After wrapping up a challenging road trip with a much-needed win over the Blackhawks on Tuesday, the Hurricanes next begin a critical stretch of home hockey. The 1-2-1 mark over the four-game road trip is not good enough, nor is the current 7-7-1 record in terms of chasing a return to playoff hockey. And the trend after a stellar 4-0-1 start continues to be negative. But the team does deserve some credit for scratching and clawing to salvage three points in a 1-2-1 road trip. And only 16 games into the season, by no means is anything decided. And that is what makes the next stretch of games critical. The Hurricanes now play six straight games at home. Four of those six games are against teams currently in the bottom third of the league. To push up into the playoffs will require the team to find some stretches where they reel off wins (and ideally next time not proceed to quickly give up that progress). By no means will the season be decided when the Hurricanes emerge from this home stand still in November, but in terms of charting a different course from recent years, I really believe this next stretch is more critical than many might realize. The game is against a Detroit team that has rebounded a bit from a slow start but still sits near the bottom of the Atlantic Division at 6-8-2. The Wings won in overtime last night against the Rangers and have been hot in winning five out of their last six games.   Against that back drop, here are my watch points...