Today’s Daily Cup of Joe offers a small set of quick hitters.
If the Canes are going to collect a gain from a bit of desperation, now is the time. Because of how well the other Eastern Conference bubble teams are playing, even a small burst of losses could make a rebound really tough right now.
One big issue with the 2019-20 Hurricanes is that the team really has not latched onto a repeatable formula. So many of the Canes wins come on days that seem easy because of scoring. As good teams find a higher gear, it becomes harder and harder to win just by out-gunning other teams.
The Hurricanes are now 0-5 on the road since the magnificent 4-0-1 road trip during the front part of December. Without the home tilted schedule from January, the Hurricanes need to quickly right the ship resume collecting points in road games.
It will be interesting to see if the Canes falling below the playoff cut line prompts some urgency from Don Waddell. On the one hand, I think the biggest issue right now is more level of play at least on a consistent basis from the whole roster which is not fixable with a single trade. On the other hand, I do think that stabilizing the defense a bit could help.
Increasingly I wonder if Jake Gardiner’s offensive production in Toronto was just inflated by playing with arguably the most skilled set of top half of the roster forwards in the NHL. His defensive struggles early in the season are well-documented, but maybe more surprising is that Gardiner has not been a difference-maker offensively. His current 22-point pace would be barely more than half compared to 30 points in 62 games in 2018-19.
This team played its best in 2018-19 once its backs were against the wall, so despite the recent bumps in the road, I would not count this team out.
What say you Canes fans?
1) Who has other quick hitters?
2) Who has comments on these quick hitters?