Carolina Hurricanes sign defenseman Calvin de Haan

Carolina Hurricanes sign defenseman Calvin de Haan

As has started to become commonplace, just when things seem really quiet and the news week or at least day is over, the Carolina Hurricanes drop something. Ron Francis was let go when the majority of the local media was off at the ACC basketball tourney in New York. The trade for Dougie Hamilton and Micheal Ferland was announced just when it seemed like everyone was packing up their tents from the draft. And today, after hours on the Fourth of July eve, the Carolina Hurricanes announced that the team had signed defenseman Calvin de Haan to a four-year deal for $4.05 million per year. I have been chirping about de Haan as a logical target and priority since before the start of free agency, so much of what I have to say about the deal will be a repeat of what I have written in the last week.   Why Calvin de Haan? How we arrived here The history of recent struggles building out a solid top 4 Last summer when many were enthralled with the high end ‘potential’ of the Hurricanes young blue line, I suggested that the team could use a bit more proven help short-term in the form of a player who could help solidify the second defense pairing. In 2016-17, the roar of how good the young Hurricanes blue line was going to be someday mostly drowned out the reality of a team that struggled to find top 4 balance on the road. At home, the Hurricanes played strength on strength with an emerging first pairing of Slavin/Pesce, but especially on the road, the...
Carolina Hurricanes sign goalie Petr Mrazek

Carolina Hurricanes sign goalie Petr Mrazek

(Those who visited Canes and Coffee last spring when the team was imploding will get the ice cream in the picture. Could Darling/Mrazek boost local ice cream sales?) The opening day of the free agent signing period for the NHL, the Hurricanes addressed the team’s need to add a goalie. Shortly after it was officially announced that Cam Ward had signed with the Chicago Blackhawks, the Hurricanes announced the signing of Petr Mrazek to fill the slot previously occupied by Ward.   The deal Petr Mrazek was signed for a bargain basement $1.5 million and with an ultra low risk one-year deal. The upside is that the deal eats up pretty much minimal budget and cannot be a negative past the end of the 2018-19 season. So the deal rates incredibly high for avoiding long-term financial risks.   Petr Mrazek’s history As for the player that the Hurricanes obtained for their $1.5 million investment, in simplest terms I would consider Mrazek to be a high risk, high reward option and even a bit of a rebound bet. After a step-wise path and some seasoning at the AHL level with a few NHL games, Mrazek burst onto the NHL scene in during the 2014-15 season with a 16-9-2 record and a .918 save percentage and 2.38 goals against average. Mrazek continued his ascension in 2015-16 by seizing the Red Wings’ starting job and posting a 27-16-6 record in 54 starts with a solid .921 save percentage and 2.38 goals against average. His 2015-16 season vaulted him over Jimmy Howard, put him on the list of promising young starters at on...
2018 NHL free agent frenzy preview from a Carolina Hurricanes’ angle

2018 NHL free agent frenzy preview from a Carolina Hurricanes’ angle

Sunday kicks off open season for teams looking to use heavy ammo in the form of bunches of dollars to attract free agents. For the longest time, the Hurricanes have been small players in these yearly festivities mostly quietly adding depth players while the fireworks were going off across the league. The team did add Justin Williams on the opening day of 2017’s free agency, but even medium size additions have been few and far between otherwise. With new management in place that already made a blockbuster type trade during draft weekend, might this year be different? At a minimum, the Hurricanes are definitely in the market for a goalie and per comments by Don Waddell at the prospect camp Summerfest, that addition could be made within 24 hours. As you settle in for what can be an interesting day on Sunday, here are a few articles from earlier this week that set the stage for today’s deal-making article. Part 1 shopped the goalie options that will likely come into play. Part 2 assessed and slotted the team’s forwards. And coming out of the Dougie Hamilton/Micheal Ferland trade, I talked about the likely next steps on defense.   So by position, here is a quick guide to Sunday’s NHL fun…   At goalie This is one area where the team is certain to make a deal at some point. Cam Ward seems destined for the Chicago Blackhawks which leaves one opening for a goalie with the Hurricanes. The article above handicapped the primary options. My 2 cents says this: 1) I want a goalie on a one or two-year...
Insight from Calgary on Dougie Hamilton, Micheal Ferland and Adam Fox

Insight from Calgary on Dougie Hamilton, Micheal Ferland and Adam Fox

As is the case with any big trade, the immediate question is what the team is getting in the players that were obtained. I offered my thoughts on the deal already in two parts. Part 1: Evaluating the deal Part 2: The side effects But oftentimes, the more interesting perspective is that of writers, scouts and others who track the players on the same 82-game basis that I track the Hurricanes. Canes and Coffee is incredibly fortunate to have two very good contacts who track the Calgary Flames on an every-game basis and were generous enough to share their insight on Dougie Hamilton, Micheal Ferland and Adam Fox.   About the interviewees Todd Cordell Todd Cordell (@ToddCordell) is active on many fronts as an NHL scout, analyst and writer. He covers the Calgary Flames and New Jersey Devils for Hockeybuzz. He also writes for My NHL Trade Rumors and scouts the OHL for HockeyProspect.   Darren Haynes Darren Haynes (@DarrenWHaynes) has covered the Calgary Flames for The Canadian Press since 1990 and is a fixture at all home games. He is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers Association. In addition to his game stories and other features that can be found on the CP news wire (will also appear on the AP news wire in the United States), he also maintains a blog in which he posts stories that are more Calgary-centric and not newsworthy enough to be of national interest. His blog is called Flames From 80 Feet, which is named after his press box view, which is 80 feet above the ice surface at the Saddledome....
Carolina Hurricanes re-sign Phil Di Giuseppe and qualify four others

Carolina Hurricanes re-sign Phil Di Giuseppe and qualify four others

Monday was the deadline for teams to extend qualifying offers to restricted to retain their rights. Players who were not given their qualifying offers are set to become unrestricted free agents on July 1. The Hurricanes initially qualified Trevor van Riemsdyk, Lucas Wallmark, Valentin Zykov and Greg McKegg. Of that group only veteran AHLer Greg McKegg was a player who could have gone either way. The Hurricanes chose not to qualify Joakim Nordstrom, Phil Di Giuseppe, Sergey Tolchinsky, Keegan Kanzig and Tyler Ganly. Working through the group…   Signed Phil Di Giuseppe Di Giuseppe was actually not qualified probably for fear of arbitration risk, but later in the day the team announced that it had signed him to a one-year, one-way contract for $750,000. On Twitter before after not being qualified and before he was signed, I said: Will be interesting to see if #Canes actually try to re-sign Di Giuseppe and/or Nordstrom. Could just be that team is not willing to risk bad arbitration decision. https://t.co/sYlBtijiEG — Canes and Coffee (@CanesandCoffee) June 25, 2018 As a player who could have been cut to make room like Nordstrom (likely), he was definitely a could stay/could go player. What surprises me a bit is the fact that he received a one-way deal. On the one hand, he has paid some dues and probably earned it. On the other hand, with the volume of young players in the mix, he has his work cut out to earn an NHL roster slot, so having him on a two-way contract would have been more flexible financially. I have long liked Di Giuseppe a...
Hurricanes trade Elias Lindholm and Noah Hanifin for Dougie Hamilton, Micheal Ferland and prospect Adam Fox (Part 2: The side effects)

Hurricanes trade Elias Lindholm and Noah Hanifin for Dougie Hamilton, Micheal Ferland and prospect Adam Fox (Part 2: The side effects)

In case you missed it, after a bunch of trade rumors and rumblings on Friday but not activity through the front part of the day Saturday, the bomb dropped on Saturday afternoon when the Carolina Hurricanes announced that the team had traded Elias Lindholm and Noah Hanifin to the Calgary Flames for Dougie Hamilton, Micheal Ferland and prospect Adam Fox. Part one of this two-part series covered the trade itself. And on the 2018 NHL Draft itself which fell into the background Saturday afternoon, Canes and Coffee compiled a reading list on #2 overall draft pick Andrei Svechnikov. Part two has a quick update on multiple other things that follow from Saturday’s trade.   Update on Adam Fox In doing a few check ins, Adam Fox who is the blue line prospect included in the detail is an interesting situation. The positive is that he is a much higher-end prospect than his third-round draft pedigree would indicate. When one reads articles about him, he sounds like Jake Bean on offensive steroids which is saying something since Bean is a higher-end offensive blue line prospect himself. The negative is that apparently the reason he was available is because he was not going to sign with the Flames. So when you net it out, Fox represents a high risk, high reward addition to the trade. The burning question is what was keeping him from signing with Calgary and is it something that the Canes can remedy? If he just wants to pick where he goes like a free agent, the Hurricanes might be out of luck. But if instead, he just...