Today’s Daily Cup of Joe offers a small batch of random comments that have not made it into other articles in depth yet.
Trying to re-find Micheal Ferland
After being pretty much the Nino Niederreiter of the first half of the season as a scoring power forward on Aho’s line. An injury derailed Ferland a bit, and Brind’Amour has yet to be able to get him going again. He looked good for a short stretch with Teravainen/Staal but then was replaced by Andrei Svechnikov.
I would give Ferland a shot with McKegg. I think both players have a bit more to offer offensively than their recent track records. McKegg has shown some signs of having some playmaking ability at least sporadically, and Ferland has demonstrated an ability to put the puck in the net.
Goaltending this week
With three nicely-spaced games for a playoff berth, one has to wonder if Brind’Amour and Bales will stick with the recent rotation or if instead they might choose to ride Mrazek. It is not by a wide margin, but recently Mrazek has been the better goalie.
He has not been himself for a couple weeks now. To his credit, he has not been a liability and he has picked up some points along the way. But at the same time, Aho just has not been great in a game for awhile now. It is not clear if it is just physical fatigue, just a downturn or an injury, but the Hurricanes would greatly benefit if Aho could muster one or two more big games.
If de Haan’s injury keeps him out of the lineup as expected, Haydn Fleury is likely to be recalled. I liked Fleury’s play in limited ice time the last time he was recalled. No doubt, the team would be better off with everyone healthy. But the potential positive is that maybe Fleury and van Riemsdyk have better chemistry than de Haan and van Riemsdyk who have struggled in the past few games.
What say you Canes fans?
1) Who would you start in net for the remaining games?
2) Who thinks that Haydn Fleury will score his first NHL goal in absolutely huge fashion in one of the remaining games?
3) Do you also see Aho fighting it a bit right now, or do you think it is maybe just the normal ups and downs of a long season?