As I write this, the Falmes are schooling the Hurricanes 6-4. It was 6-3 when I started, but The Chosen One just scored. I’m frustrated and upset, and I can only imagine how the players feel.
So, let’s look at where the team is going wrong:
Effort is there. But frustration is setting in, and it will take an herculean effort at this point to overcome it.
Great Leader Peter Karmanos refuses to spend the amount needed to bring in veteran leadership to help this team along–he looks at the barest minimum he can spend, tops it up by a couple bills, and then JR goes and blows it on bad signings like Tomas Kaberle. It’s like the season was written off before training camp even started, and Great Leader doesn’t even care because he’s got a Cup Ring. That’s what pisses me off so much–this nickel-and-dime bullshit has GOT. TO. STOP. It’s become even more important now, with a realignment in the cards for next season that will put the Hurricanes in with teams that actually spend money. This shit’s gotta change, kids. And it’s gotta change at the top of the food chain.
I’m seriously giving thought to buying lotto tickets four times a week in the hopes that I hit the jackpot so I can invest in the team and actually have some frelling input. Here, here’s an extra few million dollars–GET A DECENT VETERAN OR TWO TO HELP THE CHOSEN ONE, YOU JACKWAGONS! Either that, or I’ll just go picket the SAS Institute in an attempt to get local billionaire Jim Goodnight to buy the damn team. #OccupySAS!
But, let’s look at the good that Admiral Kirk has done–he’s gotten the team to WANT to show up again. It’s clear that there’s a definite change in attitude on the team, and a definite upgrade in the effort level. Admiral Kirk doesn’t make excuses, and he’s very up-front with the players about what he wants and gives clear direction. They certainly didn’t have any of that with Chairman Mo. The team doesn’t quit now. They have the equivalent of duct tape and kukris left to them, and with 5:00 left in the third period they’re still fighting.
What is being shown is the lack of veteran leadership on the team–The Chosen One is being expected to carry the forward corps with the help of only one Sutter. Our defence is Tim Gleason, Joni Pitkanen, a bunch of kids, one of those “DO NOT BACK UP, SEVERE TIRE DAMAGE” speedbumps, and a Krispy Kreme donut. That’s not going to win a lot of games. Let’s be honest. They’ll make it exciting, but wins will be few and far between for the rest of the season IMO.
Can’t wait to see what happens in Edmonchuk tomorrow.
(and as I finish this post, the game is over and it’s 7-6 Falmes. The Chosen One scored twice.)
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.
Of ALL the guys we could have drafted in the first round:
16) C/RW Landon Ferraro
17) RW Zach Budish
20) LW Carl Klingberg
21) C Drew Shore
23) LW Jeremy Morin
27) D Stefan Elliott
34) RW Alex Chiasson (no relation to Steve)
35) D Ryan Button
37) C Joonas Nattinen
38) D Charles-Olivier Roussel
39) C Ryan O’Reilly
40) RW Richard Panik
41) C Ethan Werek
42) D Dmitri Orlov
43) C Tomas Tatar
44) RW Toni Rajala
45) D Eric Gelinas
46) D Brayden McNabb
47) RW Josh Birkholz
48) C Alex Hutchings
49) C Jakob Silfverberg
50) D Seth Helgeson
We pick this dude:
WTF was the scouting staff smoking when they made that pick?? Did all 4 of them decide to gather ’round, light up a big blunt, and come to the collective conclusion that the solution to all of our size woes was some dude that everyone else figured was a second-rounder at best?? What are they going to do with this dude, give him a wand and tell him to go fight Voldemort? Maybe they got so stoned that they thought they were drafting for a Quidditch team instead of an NHL team.
The only team that was made of more fail than the Hurricanes on Day 1 of the Draft were the Hartfordelphia Whaleflyers. When that trade got announced, I had to ask myself if Homer was hitting the sauce again–all that for My Golden Bitch?? Really?? Really?? 2 first-rounders, a conditional 3rd-rounder, AND two good young players?? For Pronger?? If I’m a Pflyers fan, I’m getting out the cans of gas and the matches and preparing to immolate myself in front of the Walk-Over-Ya Center because…damn.
p.s. TSN’s trio of commentators can blow me for deciding to cut away from/talk over Ron Francis when he announced our pick. I mean, I get that they figured “eh, it’s the Hurricanes, they’ll just blow it anyway”–but really. You asshats could have STFU and let Ronnie announce the pick.? I mean, I’m just sayin’.
Can’t wait to see how they blow it on Day 2. Somebody pass me a Mojito…or ten.
I don’t even fucking believe it. Jeff O’Neill? The guy who needed shipped out of Raleigh before he wound up piledriving himself into a bridge abutment after getting tanked at Crowley’s? The guy who was surly with fans (including his #1 fan on the whole damn planet, who he ripped a new one just for saying “hi” to him on the street), surly with the media, and whose best year was the Year of The Great Finals Run (well OK, and the year before, when he became the franchise’s first 40-goal man since Brendan damn Shanahan)?
The dude who played in a beer league all last season rather than play in the minors? What? I would HOPE he’s being looked at as an Albany signing, fo realz. I would also hope that O’s managed to get it through his head that if he wants to have anything even remotely resembling a career in the NHL again, he’s going to have to start in the minors and work his way into The Show.
And I’ll let the Tribal Elders take care of the other stuff.
So as I said earlier, I knew about the trade the minute it was announced on NHL Live. My head hit the desk, because really–I know that Snatch (who is an RFA) is going to want stupid money that he’s not worth, which means that when JR signs him so that he can save face, we’ll effectively be done looking for defencemen.
We are so fux0red. Not as fux0red as Tampa or Washington, but we’re still fux0red.
So, Cole. Not the same since he got Orpiked, but still–he was one of our better forwards and he was getting back into form. Dudeman was also our only tradeable asset, thanks to the 23987234724 NTCs that JimR handed out like Halloween candy–and with John-Michael LiLOLs out of the picture, JimR kinda had to trade for what he could trade for.
He better not be done.
More of a breakdown from Luke, who was at the Presser (and who takes a nice potshot at Perez Eklund).
We better damn not be done.
Laviolette keeps job — LSB
After keeping us all on pins and needles for weeks after the end of the season, JimR has finally made it official–Peter Laviolette is staying on as coach of the Hurricanes.
I had gotten some juicy rumours dropped on me regarding possible replacements (Chairman Mo was NOT one of those possible replacements), as well as a possible destination for our beloved coach (conjecture was that ATL would have had him on their payroll inside of 36 hours). But since I couldn’t substantiate them I didn’t feel comfortable posting them–after all, I’m not charging all y’all $texas for the “privilege” of reading complete and total codswallop and made-up “CONFIRMED TRADE IN THE WORKS” stories that are cribbed from message boards.
So, yeah. The Samsonov signing should have been a sign, but of course it wasn’t. Great Leader wanted to rap with the coach, and word around the campfire is that PK told Lavi that the ball is rather firmly lodged in his court–so Lavi was the master of his own fate. He loves it here, his family loves it here, and he wanted to stay–and so Great Leader let him stay.
I just hope that we can avoid a “three months of suck” this time around, because…well…that sucked.
As all seven of you are no doubt aware, Peter Laviolette is still officially in limbo here–will he stay, will he go? Who knows? I’ve got this absolutely sick feeling that Lavi’s going to get the boot and wind up in Atlanta, while we’ll get Chairman Mo back behind our bench. HOPEfully it’s just the mead talking, because if Mo comes back I can about guarantee you that we’ll see triple-digit attendance at the RBC Center if we’re lucky and we’re playing Ottawa on a Tuesday.
If Lavi goes, don’t be surprised if a company man gets the job barring a miracle. Crazy Ron I don’t want to see here–I don’t think he’ll sit well with the populace–though Joel Quenneville (former member of the ’86 Whalers team) would be nice to have, as a nice nod to the team’s past (the Avs’ recent playoff performance notwithstanding–sorry Avs fans, but the Hurricanes kinda roont Jose Theodore for y’all way back in ’02).
The folks at The Hockey Show have put together a fun little video for all y’all–Bret of the Gimpy Hip and his lovely wife Kristi Yamaguchi take the viewer behind the scenes of her rehearsals for Dancing With The Stars (which, unlike EJ Hradek, I do NOT watch), and Gimpy learns to do the Cha Cha.
I’ve really had a hard time getting into the playoffs, since the four teams that are left are teams that I either despise (Detroit, who I hope gets bought and moved to someplace like Apalachicola, FL the instant Mike Ilitch kicks it) or intensely dislike (Dallas, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh). But since Wife 1A is a Pens fan, I’m suckin’ it up and waving a black-and-gold pompom for her.
ECF Game 3 in Philadelphia tonight. Puck drops at 7:30 at the Wachovia Center, and it should be an interesting game. Wonder if the Pflyers will try to get down and dirty with Evgeni “Slewfoot” Malkin?
So this morning I pull up the N&O to see if Luke’s come back from hisÂ vacation with anything new.
OK, I can see Glen Wesley coming back. But Bret of the Gimpy Hip?Â WHY, for the love of Tyr, is he even mentioned?Â Dude needs to RETIRE.
As we no doubt have already heard, the Warchief skated with the Hurricanes who were picked for their respective national teams for the World Championships in Quebec City–he’ll be back in time for next season, which is a plus.
Also: Luke comments in Lord Stanley’s Blog about the kick-ass job Versus is doing covering the playoffs–and they are doing a very good job (but Brian Engblom has got to get a new hairdo–the mullet is starting to look rather like a headcrab). Normally I take shots at Versus for the way they cover the NHL, but they’re doing a good job this season.
Now, if only Versus was more widely carried and didn’t show the same 5 or 6 teams over and over again during the regular season….
26 August 1994. The Hartford Whalers have been sold to Peter Karmanos, and he wants to send a message to the fans that the team intends to “win now.” New GM Jim Rutherford decides to make a splash by signing Boston Bruins blueliner Glen Wesley to an RFA offer sheet, and Boston’s then-GM Harry Sinden spooges himself at the chance to stick it to a division rival. Sinden elects not to match, and the Whalers are forced to give up three first-round draft picks.
Draft Day 1995. Harry Sinden rubs his hands with glee as he steps to the podium and uses the first of Hartford’s generous gifts to draft Tacoma Rockets defenceman Kyle McLaren. Jim Rutherford drafts goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere, who goes on to win a Cup with the Anaheim Ducks. Kyle McLaren goes on to become notorious for trying to drive Richard Zednik’s nose into his brain-stem with his elbow in the 2002 playoffs, and eventually is traded to the San Jose Sharks.
Draft Day 1996. Harry Sinden grins like an idiot as he drafts Brandon Wheat Kings defenceman Johnathan Aitken with the second of Hartford’s generous gifts. Jim Rutherford drafts left winger Trevor Wasyluk in the second round. Aitken flames out in spectacular fashion and goes on to play in the DEL for Klagenfurt. Wasyluk never even sniffs the NHL, and eventually retires from hockey in 2003.
Draft Day 1997. Harry Sinden gleefully uses the third wish provided him by the Hartford genie and drafts forward Sergei Samsonov (who at the time was playing with the IHL’s Detroit Vipers). The Hartford Whalers have moved to North Carolina and are now the Carolina Hurricanes. Jim Rutherford drafts defenceman Nikos (Don’t call me Chris!) Tselios with a draft pick gotten from Detroit in the Brendan Shanahan trade. Samsonov wins the Calder Trophy that season. Tselios plays a whopping two games with the Hurricanes, and eventually leaves the Hurricanes’ system during the Season From Hell.
8 January 2008: In a strange twist of irony, Sergei Samsonov is picked up by the Carolina Hurricanes after being put on waivers by the Chicago Blackhawks–Samsonov’s third team in about as many years.
Hey, it’s only about 10 years or so too late. Ever since that Finals run with Edmonton in ’06, the man just hasn’t been “all there”. It’s like the guy just went into check-cashing mode, which is not what we need on this team right now. What do I think about the pickup? Uhh…no. I think that JimR should have gotten over Black Friday and called Brian Burke to offer a draft pick for Bryzgalov so that this team could have a goaltender that could be a clear Number One rather than continuing the John Grahame Experiment (and don’t get me started on the classless idiots on x Random Messageboard who decided to send ol’ Crackers off with some pathetic STD smack). I think that we could have done better than Samsonov.
Another fool on x Random Messageboard is taking people to task for refusing to be all ZOMGYAYW00TOMFGBBQ!!!1 over this acquisition–”wait and see–remember Cullen?” Yeah, well Cullen played in seriously defensive systems before coming here, sunshine. So I’ll wait and see just how much Samsonov manages to live down to his recent career (lack of) performance.
Just sayin’. Oh yeah–and the Hurricanes take on the Bruins tonight. If Samsonov scored the game-winner against them, then it really would be kinda ironic.
I’m filing this one under “GM Insanity”.
Jeremy Roenick, The Mouth That Bored, has signed an “until I score #500″ deal with the San Jose Sharks.
Officially, the deal is for one year–but anyone with a clue knows that he’s just doing this to get to 500 goals scored, at which point he’ll say “Seeya!” and retire for good. We hope.
Well, I hope anyway. At one time, the guy was amusing–now he’s just annoying. And his brains are just this side of mush.
Training camp starts in 10 days. Woot!
So yesterday’s highlight–for me–was getting a text message telling me that Buffalo lost both their captains to free agency.
Well that and fending off Paco the Burrito Bandito’s latest attempt to clean out the store’s sandwich cooler without paying for anything. And trying not to fall asleep behind the wheel on the way home from work.
Now that I’ve had some sleep (and a chance to take a look at everything), I find myself laughing at the stupid money that’s being thrown around yet AGAIN this season. Tom Poti to the Crapitals for 3.5 bills per? Wow, thanks a lot for buggering the market for mid-to-low-end defensemen, GMGM. This time next year I’m sure somebody will be able to sign Marek Malik for 6Million per (and as much as I adore the cat, he’s no 6 Million Dollar Man). And now they’re thinking of signing Alexei Yashin? What? This is a joke, right?
And the Rangers, of course, are reverting back to their old ways by throwing idiotic money at every free agent that they think they can get their hands on. The more things change….
The ‘Canes, meanwhile, are content to hang back and let the dust clear–their only signing being Yet Another Midget. I am okay with this, since he should help us on shootouts, but of course half the folks at TheScoreBoards and the Hurricanes’ official site are whining and crying over the signing. Yeah, maybe we should have offered Scott Gomez $12Million per year for the next five years or something–that would have made a lot of sense, huh?
As for that Pitkanen trade that was blowing around the ‘Canes boards for a while….huh. Turns out Cooch went to Edmonton after all–and Philly, IMO, went almost as stupid as the Caps and Rangers.
(We interrupt this post for an important announcement: CONGRATULATIONS, TSN, ON SCHEDULING ONLY A SHORT DAY OF COVERAGE OF UFA DAY 1 TO SHOW NASCAR.** After that and Sportsnet getting the NHL to shove back the start time of a Leafs-Canes game so they could show a race in Toronto, I don’t ever EVER want to hear another NASCAR crack from anyone north of 49 again. EVER. We now return you to your regularly-scheduled thread, already in progress.)
Briere for 8 years at 6.5Million per? 10Million per for Timonen and 5.2Million per for Hartnell? Homer, have you fallen off the wagon again? Was Bobby the Brainless in the room with you holding a gun to your dog’s head or something, to make you sign those completely asinine deals? Seriously mang, I’m worried about you.
I dunno, kids–I don’t think anyone was smart with their signings yesterday. The smart folks, IMO, are the Carolinas and Ottawas and Tampas that are hanging back and letting the “big spenders” get themselves in cap trouble so that they can capitalize later.
The more things change….
**: This very belated edit is to amend a misunderstanding on my part–TSN only scheduled 3 hours of coverage to show Neckcar. Apparently that’s supposed to make it still OK for Canadians to crack Neckcar jokes about hockey teams south of the Mason-Dixon Line, but this blogger ain’t havin’ it.
Oh, now this is funny.
Were it a Leaf that had been popped and the situations reversed, would JFJ be crying? Of course not. Leafs fans are angry at another year without
a Cup, playoffs, and Lil’ Fergie needs somebody to blame so that the fans don’t come marching down Younge Street with torches and pitchforks to re-enact the opening :15 of “Witch Hunt”.
Enter one Sean Hill. Hockey player, performance-enhancing substance user–and JFJ’s roomie when they both played for the Godless Habominations. I’m still waiting to find out what Hill got popped for, kids. What did he take, and when did he take it? And for that matter, if it was ‘roids then how did he manage to avoid showing signs of use? Was it the cream? The clear? Rogaine? Lanacaine? What was it?
Whatever. Hilly was appealing his suspension during the stretch, he was–under the rules–allowed to play during that appeal process, and he is not the reason why the Leafs choked a bid at the 8th seed in the East. The Isles outplayed the Leafs as a team during the last two weeks of the season, while the Leafs did their best impression of the 03-04 Hurricanes and Chairman Mo made his usual excuses.
If you want somebody to blame, Fergie, blame DUBIELEWICZ. It’s all his fault.
Damn that DUBIELEWICZ.
That a Euro was waived isn’t a shock–Bobby Clarke would run a completely Euro-free organization if he could. What is, however, surprising to me is that he decided to scapegoat two guys that are serviceable (though not great) along with that Euro (who is arguably the worst one on the whole Flyers roster)…and left Derian Hatcher and Mike Rathje alone.
I’m sorry, but who thought that those two tree-stumps were worth the money and length of contract that Bobby the Brainless gave them? Chancellor Franco Liao could skate faster and play better defense than those two lugs (not to mention put the claws to the asses of the forwards when they’re doggin’ it), and he’s been dead and cremated for two years! Even my husband, who hates hockey and pitches a holy fit every time I even so much as look at a pair of skates, can play better than the two anchors that Bobby Clarke has draggin’ down the Good Ship Philadelphia.
Memo to Comcast: Fire Bobby and get a GM in there who actually knows what he’s doing. Just sayin’.
And of course I had to find out about this RIGHT BEFORE I HAVE TO GO TO WORK.
(82 WPM typing speed, don’t fail me now….)
How do I feel? Uhh….fook meh, I just woke up from a pre-work nap, so I’m not sure HOW to feel right now.
Check that–I do know how to feel. Relieved…kinda. I mean, at least the Jack Johnson saga is over, and if the kid winds up becoming a discipline problem in the NHL then JimR looks like a genius. Otherwise, there’s going to be some unhappy people talking maybes and might-have-beens.
Tver, well…до свидания и счастливый случай, and thanks for stopping. Say hey to my old smokin’ buddy Danny Markov for me, willya?
I’ll reserve judgement on the n00bs until I’ve had a chance to see them in the Sightless Eye come Wednesday night, but it looks to me like there might be something else in the offing.
Call it a hunch.
For the love of Forseti, why are the ‘Canes even thinking about bringing David Tanabe back? Is this like a total regression to 00-01, or what?
Maybe we can get Igor Knyazev, Cousin Jeff Heerema, and Nikos Tselios to come back too!
Andy Delmore got called up–and of course it was AFTER the Blue Jackets were in town, which meant that there was no good-natured teasing to be had from me. Ah well–there’s always a roadie to Tampa in January, since it looks like Gruumsh One-Eye errr Bryan Berard will be laid up with that bulging disc in his back for a good while yet.
And speaking of the 2004 Cup Champs, the Hurricanes beat them in a 6-4 thriller last night at the RBC. Happy Yule to me, the ‘Canes are 7 points out in front of the rest of the Southeast now. *dances* Love the Lightning–when they’re not playing us or anywhere near us in the standings. It’s a sibling-rivalry thing, see.
In other news: Team USA announced its selections the other night–and I find myself wondering what in the Nine Hells GM Don Waddell was thinking when he green-lit this roster.
Chris Chelios? Derian Hatcher? Pudge Tkachunk? Do they want to lose in Turin? I mean, I realize that the crop of US-born defensemen is a little on the thin side right now–but I’d take Bret Hedican or Brian Leetch or even Eric freaking Weinrich and his fog-lamp visor over two slugs like Hatcher and Chelios. And for forwards? Hello, I’ll take an in-shape (if a little streaky) Matt Cullen or even a slightly over-the-hill Tony bloody Amonte or a VERY over-the-hill John LeClair over Keith Tkachuk’s injured and loafy ass. The only way Waddell could have hosed this up more than he did is if he’d put Gruumsh on the roster.
At least they didn’t put Jeremy Roenick on the team–so perhaps the furniture in Turin will be safe this time around (and I’m the King of Siam). If Peter Laviolette manages to get this team to anything more than 4th place (if they’re lucky), with the defense he’s got, I will PERSONALLY greet him at the airport when he comes back with a mariachi band, a gallon bottle of Spañada, and a box of White Owls–cos…damn.
I’ll give the princely sum of 1650 Lire to anyone who tapes a sign to Keith Tkachuk’s back that reads “GOONIES NEVER SAY DIE!” I’ll pay double if you provide me with photographic proof of the deed, and triple if you get the reference.
And if Eric Staal doesn’t make Team Canada, I’m going to don blue and gold and cheer for Sweden this year. I’m part Swedish, people–I’m allowed (and France isn’t sending a team anyway, as far as I know). And it’ll annoy Golbez, which means that it’ll be more fun for me.
Moving right along!
I do seem to have stirred up quite a hornet’s nest with my little rant last week about the double-standard that a lot of fans (and a good many mediots) love to use when it comes to judging what’s a good hockey market or not. I find it strangely amusing–but at the same time, I don’t care if people like what I say on the topic or not. I stand by my assertion that if Carolina’s a bad market because the attendance isn’t in the top half of the League, then Boston and Chicago and all the other markets that don’t sell out their building every night are bad markets too–and nobody will convince me otherwise, ever.
On a much more serious note, Phyllis Gretzky passed away on Monday night after a lengthy battle with lung cancer. My thoughts and prayers go out to the Gretzky family at this time.
Have a Happy Yule, folks. Please enjoy time with your families, and let your loved ones know that you love them.