In Rod We Trust

In Rod We Trust

Today at high noon, Rod Brind’Amour was officially introduced as the new head coach of the Carolina Hurricanes in a press conference alongside owner Tom Dundon and now official general manager Don Waddell. The press conference is well worth the investment of your time to gain a little bit of insight into Rod Brind’Amour as a head coach on his first full day officially on the job but more significantly to feel the positive vibe emanating out from the media room at PNC Arena. Especially for those who are negative or on the fence on this move, I encourage you to watch the press conference and suck in some of the positive energy. As a Canes hockey fan, you deserve it. I originally called for Rod Brind’Amour to be named interim coach on March 14 after one of many debilitating losses during the 2017-18 season. To be clear, my intent at that time was simply to make a statement, put a stake in the ground and move forward. One has to wonder if not for the financial situation that ultimately enabled Dundon to see Peters to the door without risking paying him for next season if in fact he would have been on in mid-March. More recently on April 25, I posted a reasonably balanced set of pros and cons on the potential for Rod Brind’Amour to be the next head coach. And yesterday after the announcement that Brind’Amour had been named head coach, I penned some additional notes on the situation. To be clear, I stand by my original preference for a coach with more head coach experience, and...
Canes-centric preview for the Charlotte Checkers playoff series

Canes-centric preview for the Charlotte Checkers playoff series

We will have to wait at least another year before we see playoff hockey in Raleigh, but for the second season in a row, the Charlotte Checkers have provided live playoff hockey to the contingent of Canes fans willing to make the 2 1/2-ish hour drive down I-40 to Bojangles’ Coliseum in Charlotte. The schedule lines up absolutely wonderfully for a road trip with the series starting in Charlotte at 7pm on Friday and then continuing with game 2 at 6pm on Saturday. I will not be able to make the trip but am 100 percent jealous of what should be a sizable group that does for one or both of the games.   Charlotte Checkers vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins series basics The Checkers are actually the lower seed in the #2 versus #3 match up but start at home by virtue of the AHL’s 2-3 format that minimizes travel. The Checkers won three of four games against the Penguins during the regular season and maybe more significantly enter the playoffs red hot with seven straight wins and points in their last 10 games. As long as the four days off does not slow them down, the Checkers should enter the series with a head of steam. As long as the playoffs do not suck the offense out of it, the series has the potential to be an exciting and entertaining one. The Checkers led the entire AHL in scoring with 262 goals, and the Penguins were not far behind with 252. For more details on the Penguins side of the series and great coverage in general, I highly recommend...
Charlotte Checker check ins 2018: Warren Foegele

Charlotte Checker check ins 2018: Warren Foegele

The original plan was to launch into a series of check ins on Carolina Hurricanes players playing with the Checkers in 2017-18 either late this week or possibly early next week. But with the call up of Warren Foegele on Sunday and the potential for his NHL debut on Monday, the first in the series just became incredibly timely. Continuing with the theme from the recently completed series of 16 articles that checked in on Hurricanes prospects below the AHL level, the AHL series will similarly gather input from hockey people who watch/track the players on a regular basis.   About the interviewee: Mike Solarte from Spectrum News Mike Solarte (Twitter=@MikeSolarte) is the NC Sports Director for Spectrum News.  Mike has been in Charlotte for 15 years, and before that was in Raleigh for 7.  You can see him Monday-Friday on Chevrolet Sports Night at 10pm.   Charlotte Checkers check in on Warren Foegele Canes and Coffee: What was your first impression of Warren Foegele in terms of skill set and strengths upon first seeing him with the Checkers early in the 2017-18 season?   Mike Solarte: Initially, my impression of Foegele was that of a kid trying to find his way, but after watching him, he showed that he was more than a kid looking around.  Foegele has good puck poise for a rookie, and remarkably, hasn’t scored a power play goal this season. He has 26 (to date), and 4 of those are short-handers. Coach Vellucci told me that because Foegele gets so much ice time as it is that he hasn’t used him on the power play...
Thursday Coffee Shop (a day early): Stay or go — Part 1: Forwards

Thursday Coffee Shop (a day early): Stay or go — Part 1: Forwards

I had good intentions of putting this up for the Monday Coffee Shop, but I hit one of those busy stretches where life got in the way. With the 2017-18 mostly falling to pieces down the stretch, one can bet that the removal of Ron Francis from the general manager position will not be the only change between now and when the 2018-19 training camp opens. In two parts, the Coffee Shop will be holding open auditions for the general manager position via a set of polls and related discussion on the full set of Hurricanes hockey personnel. Part 1 is the forwards with simple ‘stay or go’ polls. Check back on Thursday for a similar set of polls for the goalies, defensemen and staff.   Carolina Hurricanes ‘stay or go’ polls Please remember to click vote after each individual poll response.   Sebastian Aho Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Phil Di Giuseppe Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Marcus Kruger Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Elias Lindholm Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Brock McGinn Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Joakim Nordstrom Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Victor Rask Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Derek Ryan Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Jeff Skinner Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Jordan Staal Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Lee Stempniak Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Teuvo Teravainen Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Justin Williams Stay Go View Results  Loading ...   Broader discussion   1) Which forwards would you...
Thursday Coffee Shop: Carolina Hurricanes March Madness #1–The Good Old Days bracket

Thursday Coffee Shop: Carolina Hurricanes March Madness #1–The Good Old Days bracket

Great discussions are already ongoing about a number of heavier topics in the Canes universe right now. You can find a wide array of great opinions on the state of the team after the gut-wrenching loss on Tuesday HERE. The article on the dismissal of Ron Francis from the general manager role also has a bunch of great debate which you can find HERE. If you want something current but more positive, check out today’s Daily Cup of Joe which offers a short list of building blocks.    Following the theme permeating the sports world this weekend, the Thursday Coffee Shop offers up the “Good Old Days” bracket for Canes hockey offering four head to head match ups of great moments in Canes history from the first two playoffs in Raleigh way back in 2001 and 2002. Please remember to click ‘vote’ after each individual poll response.   The greatest loss in Canes history? Game 1 features a match up between arguably the two greatest losses in Carolina Hurricanes history. It might sound odd to include a losing effort in a nostalgic look back on great moments in team history, but both of these games were epic despite the outcome. To this day, I rate the loss to the New Jersey Devils in game 6 of the 2001 playoffs among my top 5 moments in Carolina Hurricanes history. That season marked the first playoff appearance by the Hurricanes in Raleigh (after one appearance during the Greensboro years). The Hurricanes were matched up against juggernaut and perennial Stanley Cup contender New Jersey. Games 1 and 2 of the series featured...
Caniac Ice Cream Challenge for St. Baldrick’s

Caniac Ice Cream Challenge for St. Baldrick’s

On February 14, Canes and Coffee posted a short article highlighting a few participants from our local hockey community who are participating in the St. Baldrick’s even at the Carolina Hurricanes game on March 17 to raise money to help end childhood cancer. HERE you can find that article and links to make contributions to volunteers supporting this great cause. With the mood quite sour among the Caniac Nation right now with an ill-timed losing streak and inactivity at the trade deadline, many of us are entering March on a down note and struggling to find the fun in the team and sport that we love.   Ice cream for charity! So with the aim of helping a good cause and putting some fun into March hockey regardless of how our team fares on the ice, I put before our hockey community the “Caniac Ice Cream Challenge”. The concept is simple. Ice cream is fun and along with other over 21 options is a great way to ease any hockey pain. So for each serving of ice cream eaten during a Carolina Hurricanes hockey game in March and documented with a picture, I will personally donate I will donate 25 cents to participants for the St. Baldrick’s event. With an official March 1 start date, there are exactly Rod Brind’Amour days until the St. Baldrick’s event at PNC Arena, so it would be tremendous to have 468 ice cream posts completed by March 17 to make a full $117 donation in time for St. Baldrick’s at PNC Arena.   Simple how-to’s Pictures can be submitted on Twitter using #CaniacIceCreamChallenge, posted...