Sunday Canes Chronicle: Kids and ownership edition

Sunday Canes Chronicle: Kids and ownership edition

More news bubbled up on the ownership transition front in the middle of an otherwise quiet week in mid-August. Despite the slow time of year, some digging still yielded a decent mix of Hurricanes hockey reading to help pass another slow day in the dead of the offseason.   Carolina Hurricanes prospects Brock Otten from OHL Prospects shared a deep dive on the five Hurricanes prospects who played in the OHL in 2016-17 (scroll to August 12 if you check this later) and shared Martin Necas’ likely destination for 2017-18 along the way. Kevin LeBlanc from Dobber Prospects did his annual 31-in-31 on the Hurricanes prospects from a fantasy hockey angle. Tom Gulitti from NHL.com also chimed in with a 31-in-31 update on the Hurricanes prospect pool.   2017-18 Carolina Hurricanes projections Also from NHL.com, Rob Vollman dug into the statistics and suggested that the Hurricanes could be much-improved. Finishing the trifecta, Pete Jensen from NHL.com shared an early fantasy hockey look at the 2017-18 Hurricanes.   Chuck Greenberg, Peter Karmanos and the ownership situation Chip Alexander provided his latest update on the ownership situation in his August 9 article at the News & Observer. Also on August 9, Cory Lavalette at the North State Journal chimed in with an article that shared unprecedented detail on the team’s financials for the 2016-17 season. Here at Canes and Coffee, we shared our thoughts on possible angles on the most recent batch of news to break.   Go...
Peter Karmanos and Chuck Greenberg play a public chess match through early August

Peter Karmanos and Chuck Greenberg play a public chess match through early August

For those who have been tracking everything daily in the North State Journal and News & Observer and on WRALSportsFan.com and Twitter, you can skip past history lesson at the ————— toward the end.   For those catching up or looking for a refresher, check out my original article on July 13 (only hours after the rumor broke). Though almost a month has passed since that article, I stand by my general assessment of what I think a Chuck Greenberg-led acquisition could mean for the Hurricanes organization and fan base. Against the backdrop of hot weather, back to school sales and slowest month of the hockey year, the wheels continue to turn on a deal that would see the Carolina Hurricanes sold by the only owner that Canes fans have ever known in Peter Karmanos and acquired by a group led by Chuck Greenberg. Details and specific are outside of the public domain, but I think we have enough snippets of verified information that the positive but intentionally vague assessment of “wheels continue to turn” is accurate.   Chuck Greenberg prairie dogs in and out of Raleigh Throughout the process, Chuck Greenberg has yet to say anything formally or publicly on the deal or where it stands, but he has still managed to toss out enough evidence that something is in fact in process with Twitter and the local media serving as communications platforms.   July 24, 2017 – Chuck Greenberg appears in Raleigh making hockey stops. Potential Canes owner Chuck Greenberg took a look at Raleigh Center Ice on Monday, in town for meetings. #canes pic.twitter.com/dL48L3ntfh — Chip...
The double-edged sword of optimism

The double-edged sword of optimism

Last week I said the following on Twitter: 1/2 #Canes have RAPIDLY transitioned from bad to rebuilding to promising to trendy pick to win. September will be FILLED with similar. https://t.co/asVd1mlHYA — Canes and Coffee (@CanesandCoffee) August 3, 2017 2/2 Double-edged sword is that w/optimism, expectations are ratcheting up significantly for fan base that has endured long run of setbacks. — Canes and Coffee (@CanesandCoffee) August 3, 2017   Early positives have already started to trickle in from the outside NHL hockey world, and by early October I think the Hurricanes are destined to become 2017-18’s trendy pick for a surprise playoff team, a dark horse or whatever other term writers want to tag to an up-and-comer. And the pundits are right. With the NHL team improving and the prospect pool incredibly deep with players with top half of the roster potential, the trajectory is unmistakably upward right now. And I fully believe that the path to the playoffs in front of the Canes faithful is much shorter than the eight years of misses behind us. All of these things are good, and in the long run the optimism will be rewarded. But short-term, the surging optimism is a double-edged sword. With boundless optimism comes the risk of painful disappointment. Even if the Hurricanes do improve again in 2017-18 as expected, the difficult Metropolitan Division probably still makes a playoff berth a 50/50 possibility. I took an early look at the Metropolitan Division on July 20. I will not reshash all of the details, but in short I see even lesser Penguins and Capitals teams as at least playoff-worthy...
Interesting Carolina Hurricanes contract situations

Interesting Carolina Hurricanes contract situations

Among other random things during the hockey dog days of August, one of the places I have spent some time is CapFriendly which is easily among the most underrated resources available to us as hockey people. My browsing started me thinking about a few interesting situations for the Hurricanes both now and also looking into the future. For anyone who needs a refresher on some of the legalese related to contracts especially for prospects and young players, here are a few resources. Followed by a fairly detailed legal prelude, here are a few situations that come into play for our very own Carolina Hurricanes.   The significant financial advantage of having players on entry-level contracts at the NHL level One of the advantages with the structure for prospect contracts is the fixed amounts for these contracts. Players like Connor McDavid who are elite at age 18 or 19 can tack on a bunch of bonuses that escalate total salary including bonuses to the $3 million range, but the vast majority of even good young players earn $800,000-900,000 per year for their first three years of their NHL career on their entry-level contracts. The three years of the entry-level contract basically start when a player starts playing professionally either at the NHL level or at the AHL level (though players earn a lower AHL salary if they play there). The result is that players like Elias Lindholm, Noah Hanifin, Jaccob Slavin, Brett Pesce and Sebastian Aho who make a quick jump to the NHL are often incredible bargains for a couple years while still playing out their entry-level contracts. Can...
Is Janne Kuokkanen the next Sebastian Aho?

Is Janne Kuokkanen the next Sebastian Aho?

Monday wrapped up my series of articles on the Hurricanes prospect pool. There is much to be optimistic and excited about, but perhaps the player rising most rapidly right now is Janne Kuokkanen. At the risk of overhyping Kuokkanen, today’s Daily Cup of Joe takes a look at the parallels between Kuokkanen’s development thus far and the path taken by fellow Fin Sebastian Aho.   Sebastian Aho With the 35th draft pick in the 2015 NHL draft, the Carolina Hurricanes selected Sebastian Aho. He was a bit off the board in terms of the mean draft rankings and also a bit of an unknown being a European prospect. In fact, the first step in the process of welcoming Aho into the Hurricanes prospect pool was clarifying that the Sebastian Aho in question was the forward from Finland and not the defenseman from Sweden. When the Hurricanes passed on a handful of bigger names, bigger players in terms of size and more well-known players from North America, there was a mini-uproar on Twitter from many of the June draft experts who had Aho nowhere to be found at least this early in the mock drafts. Aho first arrived in Raleigh for the 2015 Carolina Hurricanes prospect camp. He had a strong week but not really anything that screamed “super star…and very soon.” While some were still transitioning from whoever it was they thought Francis should have selected instead of Aho at #35, I rated his play at prospect camp top of the class in this article that was one of Canes and Coffee’s first on our July 29, 2015 official...