Carolina Hurricanes 2018-19 schedule review

Carolina Hurricanes 2018-19 schedule review

If you are arriving today looking for 2018 NHL Draft coverage for the Carolina Hurricanes, you can find a four-part series primarily covering the opening of offseason trading in the links below.   Part 1: Potential wheeling and dealing Part 2: Potential targets (Teams A-M) Part 3: Potential targets (Teams N-Z) Part 4: Playing General Manager   Today’s Daily Cup of Joe takes a first look at the Carolina Hurricanes 2018-19 schedule which was released on Thursday. Unique features A weekday home opener. The home opener which is also the season opener is on Thursday, October 4. The team has generally played the home opener during the weekend. Not counting the lockout season, the team has not played its home opener on a weekday since the 2010-11 season, and even that was an oddity because the Raleigh home opener was not until October 27 after starting the season in Helsinki and then jumping straight into the NC State Fair road trip. It will be interesting to see if the marketing department can muster a full house on a Thursday night. A State Fair home game. The team will also play at home during the NC State Fair for the first time in forever with a 1pm home game on Saturday October 20. Here is hoping that someone comes up with a solid plan to handle parking. Afternoon delights. In addition to the 5pm Sunday starts that have become standard, the team has four afternoon games, three with a 1pm start time and another at 2pm. New Year’s Eve. December 31 makes a reappearance on the schedule with a 6pm...
2018 NHL Draft week preview: Part 4 – Playing general manager

2018 NHL Draft week preview: Part 4 – Playing general manager

Today’s Daily Cup of Joe is part 4 in a series leading up to the 2018 NHL Draft weekend and the offseason frenzy that begins in earnest with it. If you missed the first three parts, you can find them here: Part 1: Potential wheeling and dealing Part 2: Potential targets (Teams A-M) Part 3: Potential targets (Teams N-Z) Today’s Daily Cup of Joe takes a turn at being the Carolina Hurricanes general manager.   Deals I would do Disclaimer: I am not going to get bogged down in specifics of the trades past the principal players. Jeff Skinner to Los Angeles for Jake Muzzin (or another top 4 defenseman) As I have said multiple times, I think the time is now to make a long-term decision on Jeff Skinner and either sign him to an extension or trade him rather than risking a Tavares-like white knuckler late into the next season. By no means would I trade Skinner for pennies on the dollar, but if a reasonable offer arose, I would take it. In a nutshell, I just do not think Jeff Skinner is a player who is worth what his next contract will cost. He is a top-end player offensively but never really did figure out the balance also be at least an adequate two-way player. Ready to enter his ninth season in the NHL, at some point you have to evaluate a player based on what he is not what he might become.   Scott Darling to Chicago for Marian Hossa’s contract Rumors and rumblings have offered a number of more sizable deals between the the...
2018 NHL Draft week preview: Part 3 – Potential targets (Teams N-Z)

2018 NHL Draft week preview: Part 3 – Potential targets (Teams N-Z)

Pushing deeper into the week of the 2018 NHL and closer to the potentially busy weekend, yesterday’s Daily Cup of Joe identified potential trade targets from 15 of the NHL’s other 30 teams. Today’s Daily Cup of Joe continues with a similar wish list from the other 15 teams.   Nashville Predators As much as the Nashville Predators are a good team with strong depth on offense and defense, I do not see them as a likely trading partner unless Ryan Ellis or Matthias Ekholm becomes available to address the team’s need to add a top 4 defenseman.   New Jersey Devils As a division rival, the odds of the Hurricanes brokering a sizable deal with the Devils seems unlikely.   New York Islanders If the Islanders lose John Tavares to free agency, might the team consider a deeper dive into rebuilding mode? If that does occur, then perhaps either Jordan Eberle or Anders Lee could become an option for a third forward for the Aho/Teravainen combination.   New York Rangers The Rangers exercised a fairly significant sell off at the trade deadline in March. As such, it is hard to say which remaining players are on the trading block. Couple that with the fact that they are a division rival, and they are less likely to be a Hurricanes trading partner than some other teams.   Ottawa Senators Though the one year term on his contract makes it risky to add Erik Karlsson at a high price, I continue to believe that their could be merit in making Justin Faulk the primary bargaining chip to add Karlsson. The...
2018 NHL Draft week preview: Part 2 – Potential targets (Teams A-M)

2018 NHL Draft week preview: Part 2 – Potential targets (Teams A-M)

What is different this year as compared to any other draft week lead up in Hurricanes history is the fact that the Hurricanes (at least allegedly) have a number of big names on the trading block. As such, the price level that the Hurricanes could theoretically be shopping at makes similarly big name additions at least a possibility. So whereas yesterday’s part 1 of my 2018 NHL Draft week preview did bandy around a few names but mostly focused on the Hurricanes’ side of any potential draft week deals, today’s Daily Cup of Joe looks at potential targets for the Hurricanes if they do in fact pull off a blockbuster in trading a high-end player or two.   Reiterating the needs In my article on June 11, I worked through an exercise slotting the Hurricanes forwards and then identifying needs. The short version is:   1) A goalie capable of becoming the starter As has become an annual ritual, the Hurricanes need to do something to upgrade the goalie position. Cam Ward had a strong season in a backup role and only faded a bit when pressed into the starter’s role in 2017-18, but at 33 years old, he is not a starter. And Scott Darling faltered mightily in the first year of his four-year contract. One way or another the team needs to do something at the goalie position.   2) A steady top 4 defenseman who can complement and help boost one of Justin Faulk or Noah Hanifin Another area of concern on the defensive side of the puck is building out a capable second pairing. Noah Hanifin...
2018 NHL Draft week preview: Part 1 – Potential wheeling and dealing

2018 NHL Draft week preview: Part 1 – Potential wheeling and dealing

The 2018 NHL Draft is now only days away, and that of course means that trade rumors and rumblings are springing up left and right. Unlike most years, the Carolina Hurricanes rank near the top of the league in terms of discussion and rumors. All of Jeff Skinner, Justin Faulk and Noah Hanifin who are taking regular turns in the trade rumor mill would garner a significant return. Scott Darling and possibly Victor Rask could be salary cap dump type of trade candidates. And per comments from owner Tom Dundon at the beginning of the summer, anyone not named Sebastian Aho is open for trade discussion. Today’s Daily Cup of Joe offers another round of my thoughts on potential trades as a means to retool and build a playoff team for the 2018-19 season.   Who is actually available? The rumor mills would have you believe that Jeff Skinner, Justin Faulk and Noah Hanifin are actively being shopped. Oftentimes, where there is smoke there is fire on the trade front, but then there is also an element of random stuff flying around to generate attention. My thinking is that Rod Brind’Amour has the biggest say in who stays and who is at least shopped for departure. I say this for two reasons. First, Brind’Amour is tasked with righting the ship for a team that seemed to be headed in the right direction for the 2016-17 season and then careened off course in 2017-18. At the same time, there is an element of ‘this team is good enough with the right leadership’ and also an element of ‘something is structurally...
Canes catch up

Canes catch up

Before the offseason kicks into full frenzy mode next week leading up to the 2018 NHL Draft weekend, today’s Daily Cup of Joe offers a short round of Canes catch up that has a collection of thoughts not yet covered (or covered in detail) in other articles.   Jeff Daniels named assistant coach Last week, the Carolina Hurricanes announced that Jeff Daniels was named as an assistant coach to fill the gap left by Rod Brind’Amour’s promotion to head coach. To be honest, I am not thrilled with the move. This is less an assessment of Daniels and more my opinion on the run of transactions filling out the management and coaching staff. I had hoped for someone with more head coaching experience, ideally at the NHL level, for Rod Brind’Amour to be able to lean on during ups and downs of a long NHL season. Instead, the Hurricanes again stayed internal and went with a coach who had a ‘meh’ run at the AHL level and is inexperienced at the NHL level. More significant to me is missing another opportunity to inject new blood into an organization that has not been successful in some time. The team has now passed on opportunities to add from outside the organization for a general manager, head coach and assistant coach.   The preseason schedule The team also announced its 2018-19 preseason schedule which you can find HERE. The schedule is somewhat similar to years past with home and away sets with the Nashville Predators, Tampa Bay Lightning and Washington Capitals. The Canes play the usual quick burst of three games on...