What Canes rookies must do to grab an NHL roster spot for opening night

What Canes rookies must do to grab an NHL roster spot for opening night

Yesterday’s Daily Cup of Joe suggested that youth will lead the way to the next Carolina Hurricanes playoff berth. Today’s Daily Cup of Joe again has a youthful theme in detailing what I think prospects/rookies would need to do to crack the opening day roster for the 2018-19 season.   Jake Bean To make the roster out of training camp, Jake Bean would have to be lights out in training camp and preseason games. Even if that happens, it still likely requires an injury for him to see NHL ice time in October.   Trevor Carrick If Faulk departs via trade, Carrick could benefit with the best chance he has ever had to seize a roster spot even if it is just the #7 role. Younger players like Bean and McKeown will benefit much more from playing regular minutes in Charlotte versus sitting in an NHL press box. As such, Carrick needs to hope Faulk gets traded and no other NHL depth defensemen are added. If that happens, Carrick will need to show that he is capable of being a serviceable third pairing NHL defenseman to keep the team from shopping the waiver wire instead.   Warren Foegele To make the team out of training camp, Foegele will need to show that his disruptive forechecking game translates to the NHL level and also that he has some ability to score at the NHL level. Without both of those, he is really just a serviceable fourth line forward. But if his puck disrupting style of play translates to the NHL, he suddenly becomes a nice complementary forward with some offensive...
Can the next generation lead the Hurricanes back to the playoffs?

Can the next generation lead the Hurricanes back to the playoffs?

Now nine years removed from their last trip to the playoffs, the Hurricanes will again embark on an attempt to right the ship, rise up and return to the playoffs. If/when the Hurricanes rebound, Jordan Staal will likely play a role as a core veteran in the middle of the lineup. Especially if he is named captain (and to some degree even if he is not), Justin Williams could also play a significant role resetting the locker, leadership and attitude of the team. And if history is considered, a rebound seems unlikely without the team getting at least league average goaltending from Scott Darling, Petr Mrazek or someone else.   The history of Hurricanes hockey from a young leaders perspective A short history of Hurricanes’ leadership is both relevant to this article and also a great way to fill up another likely quiet day in mid-August. Upon arrival, the Hurricanes were led by Kevin Dineen and then Keith Primeau with a decent mix of veterans around both. The the first pillar of Canes hockey was really built when Ron Francis was signed as a free agent, named the captain and then led the team to its first Stanley Cup Finals appearance in 2002. Unfortunately, the playoff run was more a case of lightning in a bottle with a series of miraculous wins to tilt series than a sign that the team had built a long-term winner. Unable to build on the 2002 playoff success and with Francis’ career winding down, the baton was passed to Rod Brind’Amour. Despite the recent success, the team was largely a reclamation project by...
Random Carolina Hurricanes’ blue line musings

Random Carolina Hurricanes’ blue line musings

Nearing the second half of the slowest month of the hockey season, today’s Daily Cup of Joe offers a random collections of Hurricanes musings.   Is Edmonton now primed for a Justin Faulk trade? Today it was announced that former Hurricane Andrej Sekera would be out indefinitely with a torn Achilles tendon suffered during offseason training. Many thought that the Oilers could be in need of a defenseman like Faulk even prior, so Tuesday’s news could increase Edmonton’s incentive to do a deal for blue line help. Sekera is a left shot and Faulk a right shot, so Faulk would not directly fill that slot. But at a broader level, Edmonton needs defensive help, and even with Sekera out, the team is still shallower on the right side where CapFriendly shows only Adam Larsson and Matthew Benning as right shots currently on the roster. The name that goes back multiple years is Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. I would do that deal in a heartbeat. Nugent-Hopkins has three years remaining on his current deal at a reasonable $6 million per year. Recently in Edmonton, he had assumed a role a bit like Staal’s centering a line that took as many of the tough match ups as possible while McDavid’s line drove the offense. Nugent-Hopkins could also shift to left wing possibly on Staal’s line if Sebastian Aho’s transition to center continues and Martin Necas proves ready for the NHL.   Free agent options for blue line depth If Faulk stays, the Hurricanes are seven deep and at or near the top of the NHL in terms of salary committed to the blue...
Similarities between the 2018-19 Carolina Hurricanes and the 2005-06 team

Similarities between the 2018-19 Carolina Hurricanes and the 2005-06 team

If you missed it yesterday, be sure to see where fans land with regard to the Carolina Hurricanes captaincy for the 2018-19 season in the polls with the article on that subject yesterday. Today’s Daily Cup of Joe will dial up a dose of optimism by looking at similarities between the current state of the Carolina Hurricanes and the 2005-06 team that rose up from low expectations to shock everyone and hoist the Stanley Cup. To be clear, my point is not to predict that the same will happen but rather to remind everyone that in the topsy turvy NHL, it is in fact possible. A new(ish) coach of the rally the troops variety In 2005-06, Peter Laviolette was not technically a new coach. He had closed out a 2003-04 season behind the Hurricanes bench. But it was his first full season with the Hurricanes. Rod Brind’Amour will similarly represent a coaching change and hopefully a new attitude and mentality. More significantly, best guess is that Brind’Amour will bring some of Laviolette’s style challenging players and pushing them to find a higher level.   The departure of a scoring star For the first time since the 2009-10 season, the Hurricanes will be without Jeff Skinner. Somewhat like Jeff O’Neill, Skinner had become a leading scorer and veteran despite his young age, but as a player who never really rounded out his game, the team opted to part ways with him rather than work to ink him to an extension. The situation looks a bit like Jeff O’Neill’s from the 2005-06. At the same time that Rod Brind’Amour was digging...
Considering the Carolina Hurricanes captaincy

Considering the Carolina Hurricanes captaincy

Last summer, I expected that Justin Williams would be named the Carolina Hurricanes captain for the 2017-18 season. Instead, the team made the puzzling non-decision decision to name Justin Faulk and Jordan Staal co-captains.  And at least partly because of that decision, here we are again a year later contemplating options for the Hurricanes captain. Cutting to the chase, I vote again for Justin Williams. Though it could ruffle feathers, I still think it is the simplest choice and the right choice. With Rod Brind’Amour now in charge, I think Williams definitely gets an elevated role, but whether or not that means a ‘C’ is yet to be determined. Today’s Daily Cup of Joe takes a broader look at the likely options for resolving the captaincy. Brind’Amour is on record as saying that the team would have a single captain so that is considered.   Take redo on 2017-18 and go with Justin Williams Especially given Brind’Amour’s affinity for him, I think odds are that Justin Williams is named the captain. A potential negative is that it jumps him ahead of Staal and Faulk (if Faulk is still in a Canes uniform). That could ruffle some feathers, but I think three things mitigate this concern. First, I trust that Brind’Amour would handle this well which would go a long way toward mending any hurt feelings. Second, after the spring implosion last year, I am actually not against ruffling feathers a bit. That is actually one of the positives of naming Williams captain. It rocks the boat a bit and charts a new course which part of what this team needs....