Woohoo! That game was about the same level of effort as Tuesday night, but with a much better result. Shots finally went in, everything finally started clicking, and the frustration pretty much melted away.
Yes, it was bound to happen. And it happened despite the best efforts of Theo Peckham (who had a lovely little two-handed chop on Jeff Skinner) and serial recidivist Andy Sutton, who is looking at a suspension for his flying elbow on Alexei Ponikarovsky and a questionable hit on Jeff Skinner.
Come ON, you can’t tell me that Sutton wasn’t looking to cause injury with that hit on Skinner–did you see how his elbow went flying out IMMEDIATELY after Skinner started moving back down toward the ice? Sutton is a punk! He was a punk in Atlanta, he was a punk on the Island, he was a punk in Ottawa, and he’s STILL a bitch-ass little punk. His last suspension was five games–any bets on whether he’ll get more for that flying elbow on Ponikarovsky and his questionable hit on Skinner?
On to Friday vs. the Thrashers. Hopefully the Hurricanes can get on a very nice little roll.
And gods did this team need it.
After a frustrating-as-hell nailbiter on Saturday night, the Hurricanes are in Calgary getting ready to take on the Falmes. In the postgame on Saturday, Jeff Skinner was visibly upset and really trying hard not to let things like missing on a wide-open net get to him.
Shit happens–but I think enough shit has happened to the Hurricanes, ok?
Admiral Kirk is still upbeat, and gods love him for it. Jim Rutherford has officially called out Tomas Kaberle, which begs the question:
What the frell do we do with him? The Hurricanes are about $3Million (generously speaking) above the salary floor–if they send Krispy Kreme 2.0 down to Charlotte, they drop below the floor and get fined out the ass per the CBA. But who in the wide world of sports are the Hurricanes going to trade him for, especially given how he showed up to training camp out of condition?
For that matter, what GM in his right mind is going to trade for the guy?
EDIT: Luke DeCock posted this editorial a couple hours after I’d originally written my post. As you can see, he keeps it real as always and sums up WHY Admiral Kirk is having a harder time in his first few games than Lavi did in his. Like I’ve said before, it’s going to be ugly for a while yet.
New category for Admiral Kirk.
So, it’s been four days since Mo went for the second time, and Kirk Muller was brought in as his replacement. John Maclean was added as another assistant coach (holy crap this team has a shitload of assistant coaches).
What do I think so far? WELL NOW.
There is a definite bump in the energy level. The players are definitely displaying what can best be described as optimism–which of course is a plus–and it’s very apparent that Eric Staal feels a fuck of a lot less pressure now (isn’t it amazing what can happen when the coach actually talks to you?) I also like that players are allowed to stick up for each other–when Jeff Skinner was run into the boards during the third period, Anthony Stewart immediately stepped to Brian Boyle in an attempt to exact some rough justice. Under Mo? That never would have happened.
The most important change, however, is that the team is not giving up. Under Mo, if the team was down at the end of the second period that was pretty much it. Now, they keep fighting and slogging and trying to gut it out. But for the love of the gods, they show up for the game now.
The fans are slowly starting to trickle back in, which is very good, but it’ll take a win or three to really start to bring confidence back into the fanbase.
We’re going to have to slog through pry another month or two of annoying WTFery, friends. Passes that go nowhere, suspect defence, and scoring that’s reminiscent of the scene in John Carpenter’s version of “The Thing” where the genestealer is gleefully kicking the ass of all of Kurt Russell’s buddies while poor Kurt’s trying like hell to get his flamethrower restarted so he can roast the thing.
For those who aren’t down with 1980s alien movies, here’s the scene in question.
“OH MY GODS KILL IT! KILL IT NOW!” UGLY
The Tomas Kaberle experiment needs to end, now. Buy him out, waive him and send his ass to Charlotte, call the aliens that swapped Cup Run Frankie out for Atlanta Frankie to come and get him, whatever. He just needs to freakin’ GO.
Alex Ponikarovsky needs to go too–or at least to be put on a VERY short leash. I see some potential in him, and he may yet have a place in this org. But for reals, it’s not looking too good right now. It’s pretty clear that dudeman was brought in here just for Chairman Mo, for whatever insane reason, but now he needs to prove himself. If Admiral Kirk can make something of him, great. Otherwise, it’s the door for him.
I’m looking forward to the next few games to get a better picture of what’s going on and whether the team is still going onward and upward.