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...
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...
Help fellow Caniacs end childhood cancer — Support the Carolina Hurricanes St. Baldrick’s event

Help fellow Caniacs end childhood cancer — Support the Carolina Hurricanes St. Baldrick’s event

Canes hockey as a good local citizen Sometimes underestimated is the volume of good things that the Carolina Hurricanes organization does in our local community. The full-time fundraising efforts of the Kids ‘N Community foundation donated $560,000 to 29 children’s charities during the 2016-17 season. The team participates in league-wide initiatives including Hockey Fights Cancer in the fall and You Can Play in February which aims to make NHL hockey inclusive for everyone. And in addition to in-game fundraisers, the team also does a number of other events including the 5K, the golf tourney, skate with the Canes, the 24-hour bike-a-thon and the annual casino night (being replaced by the Hurricanes Bash this year) to name a few. A few of the players themselves have programs both at PNC Arena (renting luxury boxes for a different charity group each game) and away from the game in addition to players’ involvement in community service multiple times per season. The team and the broader Carolina Hurricanes organization deserve a ton of credit for being a good local citizen and supporting many good causes during the course of the Carolina Hurricanes hockey season.   St. Baldrick’s Foundation All of these endeavors have merit and it is tremendous that the organization is able to support so many charities, but one of my personal favorites has always been the annual tradition of the team hosting St. Baldrick’s participants at Canes games during the latter part of the season. For those who are not familiar with St. Baldrick’s, the organization is a non-profit that supports research with the goal to “Conquer Childhood Cancers.” You can learn...
Menu for “MIDTERMS” series — Carolina Hurricanes prospects below the AHL level

Menu for “MIDTERMS” series — Carolina Hurricanes prospects below the AHL level

Below is a clickable menu for the “Midterms” articles checking in on the Carolina Hurricanes’ prospects below the AHL level. Players highlighted in red are posted updates with clickable links.   NCAA David Cotton — 2015 Round #6 — Forward — Boston College Matt Filipe — 2016 Round #3 — Forward — Northeastern University Jack LaFontaine — 2016 Round #4 — Goalie — University of Michigan Luke Martin — 2017 Round #2 — Defenseman –University of Michigan Luke Stevens — 2015 Round #6 — Forward — Yale University Max Zimmer — 2016 Round #4 — Forward — University of Wisconsin   Europe Martin Necas — 2017 Round #1 — Forward — HC Kometa Brno/Czech League Eetu Luostarinen — 2017 Round #2 — Forward — KalPa/Finnish Elite League Eetu Makiniemi — 2017 Round # 4 — Goalie — Jokerit U20/Finland Ville Rasanen — 2017 — Round #7 –Defenseman — RoKi/Mestis-Finland   Ontario Hockey League Noah Carroll — 2016 — Round #6 — Defenseman — Sault Ste. Marie Jeremy Helvig –2016 — Round #5 — Goalie — Kingston   Western Hockey League Jake Bean — 2016 — Round #1 — Defenseman — Tri-City Brendan De Jong — 2017 — Round #6 –Defenseman — Portland Hudson Elynuik — 2016 — Round #3 — Forward — Spokane Morgan Geekie — 2017 — Round #3 — Forward — Tri-City Stelio Mattheos — 2017 — Round #3 — Forward — Brandon  ...
2018 MIDTERMS: Matt Filipe (Northeastern University, NCAA)

2018 MIDTERMS: Matt Filipe (Northeastern University, NCAA)

Today, Canes and Coffee’s “Midterms” series continues the check ins on the Carolina Hurricanes prospects below the AHL level. Following Jack LaFontaine at the University of Michigan, David Cotton at Boston College and Luke Stevens at Yale University, today’s edition stays in the college ranks and provides an update on Matt Filipe who is playing at Northeastern University.   Matt Filipe Matt Filipe was selected by the Hurricanes in the third round of the 2016 NHL Draft. Filipe fits within a familiar draft theme as a forward with good size and speed and skating ability that also projects to be NHL-capable. Filipe fits the mold of a strong-skating forward with NHL size. He is currently playing in his sophomore season at Northeastern University.   Interview with Joshua Kummins from the New England Hockey Journal About the interviewee Joshua Kummins (Twitter=JoshuaKummins) covers both the Boston Bruins and Hockey East for New England Hockey Journal. The magazine features content on all levels of the game. College hockey is a big part of sports culture in New England, and Joshua notes that he has been watching the sport for as long as he can remember. Joshua has also written for SB Nation College Hockey. When not at the rink, Joshua covers all levels of baseball in the region for sister publication, New England Baseball Journal.   Interview on Matt Filipe Canes and Coffee: Now in his sophomore season at Northeastern University what has been Matt Filipe’s role and how has he played thus far during the 2017-18 season? Joshua Kummins: Filipe has been a bit quieter during his second season at Northeastern...