Thoughts on Hurricanes recalling Michael Leighton

Thoughts on Hurricanes recalling Michael Leighton

Today it was announced that Eddie Lack had sustained a concussion in practice and that the Carolina Hurricanes had recalled Michael Leighton on an emergency basis. First, here is hoping that Eddie Lack recovers quickly and is back on the ice. Nothing in hoping for the Hurricanes to improve ever includes wishing physical harm upon any Canes players.   My original call to give Michael Leighton an NHL start On October 31, I already wrote the article making the case to give Michael Leighton a start. At the time, Cam Ward was just coming out of his slow start. He had played well in the home opener on the previous Friday but then struggled again in the 4-3 home loss to the Flyers on Sunday. And the Hurricanes also had a back-to-back set coming up on Saturday and Sunday that could have been a chance to give Leighton a look.   An update on the Hurricanes goaltending situation The situation is much less dire now with Ward clicking through a nicely-spaced run of home games and playing well, but Ward is not going to play out the string through 65 more games. In addition, the Hurricanes face a busy stretch of schedule with 3 back-to-back sets and 10 games total in the next 17 days. Meanwhile, Leighton really has not cooled off despite the Checkers struggling a bit of late. He has lost a few games, but his goals against average and save percentage sit at an impressive 1.66 and .937 respectively. While Ward has seized the starting job and is playing really well, the Hurricanes still need a backup....
Detailed case for giving Michael Leighton a start

Detailed case for giving Michael Leighton a start

First as quick catch up on transactions, not too surprisingly the Hurricanes waived Martin Frk today. First, I like the idea of Ron Francis taking free trials with no real risk when he can get them. Not every waivers claim will become a roster player like Andrej Nestrasil but because the cost is tiny, it is worth exploring. I had Frk slated to go back on waivers from the beginning. ——————- Per polling from Canes and Coffee email mailing list subscribers, Monday’s Daily Cup of Joe addressed the elephant in the room and addressed the Hurricanes goaltending situation. My thoughts in the Daily Cup of Joe post are HERE. The companion reader poll and discussion is HERE. I finished my thoughts by saying that I would consider giving John Leighton an NHL start in 1 half of the Canes back-to-back set on Saturday and Sunday. That is admittedly a somewhat controversial stance. In today’s Daily Cup of Joe, I hope to clarify the rationale behind such a move.   Why Michael Leighton? Via a set of 10 questions, I will try to explain the rationale behind giving Michael Leighton a 1-start trial. 1-Do I think that Michael Leighton is part of the long-term solution in net? I highly doubt it. As a 35-year old AHL/NHL fringe goalie in the twilight of his career, the odds of him being a good NHL starter for an extended period of time is extremely low. Even if the Leighton experiment goes well, it does not change the need for Ron Francis to figure out something longer term. 2-So if Michael Leighton is not...