After a 10-year wait, on Thursday the Carolina Hurricanes will return to NHL playoff action.
Today’s Daily Cup of Joe offers 10 wishes for the Carolina Hurricanes in the playoffs.
1) The Canes win at least once at home
Players who have been with the team for a long time and have yet to play in playoffs deserve one fun home playoff win. Fans who have stuck with the team through some lean years deserve one fun playoff win. And fun playoff wins are incredibly powerful for building a fan base and hooking new or casual fans on the game.
2) The Canes finish their 2018-19 season at PNC Arena
Ideally that would be a game 7 Stanley Cup Championship win. But if the odds win out and the Hurricanes end their 2018-19 season with a loss, I still would much rather it be at home. Regardless of where it goes from here, the season has been a great one, and I think the fan base will do the right thing ushering out the 2018-19 season even if it is in a losing effort.
3) The Hurricanes stick to their identity in the playoffs
The peak version of the 2018-19 Carolina Hurricanes is a fast-paced, aggressive forechecking team. I want to see the Hurricanes not adjust under the increased pressure but rather just stick with what worked.
4) Sebastian Aho scores a goal
I would love to see Sebastian Aho get his second wind in the playoffs and have a huge series or more. But more simple than that, I just want to see the young leader of the team’s offense notch his first NHL goal.
5) The young core adapts to the higher intensity level quickly
Playoff hockey is different, and I do not think it is something that players can truly prepare for until they experience it. My hope is that the Hurricanes’ young core can adapt quickly.
6) Micheal Ferland kicks the crap out of Tom Wilson
It is not clear to what degree Ferland’s upper body injury thought to be a shoulder injury has healed, so it is possible that he is red-lighted for dropping the gloves right now. But if Ferland is healthy and able, I think there is a decent chance the two tussle. For all things good versus evil, I hope Ferland wins such a bout.
7) The playoffs boost the fan base
As I noted above, there is nothing like playoff hockey to help new or casual fans get hooked at a deeper level. As the team hopefully begins an extended rise, I hope the playoffs are glorious and do their part to boost the fan base.
What say you Canes fans?
1) Which one (or a couple) of my seven wishes would you prioritize?
2) What Canes playoff wishes would you add to my list?