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07-22-2012, 02:18 PM
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DaveG's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Durham NC
Country: United States
Posts: 34,207
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1) Starting Line-up
as of right now:
Alexander Semin - Eric Staal - Tuomo Ruutu
Jeff Skinner - Jordan Staal - Jussi Jokinen
Jiri Tlusty - Jeremy Welsh - Chad LaRose
Andreas Nodl - Tim Brent - Patrick Dwyer
Anthony Stewart

Joni Pitkanen - Jamie McBain
Jay Harrison - Justin Faulk
Tim Gleason - Joe Corvo

Cam Ward
Brian Boucher* (starts season on IR)
Justin Peters

Top Call-ups:
Drayson Bowman (LW, RW), Zach Boychuk (LW), Zac Dalpe (C, RW), Riley Nash (C), Jerome Samson (RW), Brett Sutter (LW), Bobby Sanguinetti (D), MA Gragnani (D)

2) Descriptions
Eric Staal - C - Captain of the franchise and a cornerstone player for almost a decade now. Difficult to handle due to his size, speed, and overall goal scoring ability, he's also added more of a playmaking aspect to his game the past few years. 30-50 or better this season would not be out of the question.

Cam Ward - G - One of three holdovers from the 05-06 Cup team still on the roster (the other being LaRose) Ward's emerged as one of the best goalies in the league after a rocky couple seasons post-Cup. Should be expected to play around 70 games again as backup Boucher is injured.

Jordan Staal - C - Younger brother of Eric, a perennial Selke threat with Pittsburgh he was acquired this past draft for Brandon Sutter, Brian Dumoulin, and the #8 pick. Will be expected to carry more of an offensive role with the Hurricanes, and should be a Selke finalist if his defensive game from Pittsburgh carries over with added offensive output.

Jeff Skinner - LW - One of the leagues young stars, not even yet legal to drink he already has a major award (Calder) and over 100 points to his record. Should be expected to rebound this season and if he develops some chemistry with either of the Staals could produce at or close to a point per game pace.

Justin Faulk - D - Went somewhat unnoticed at Minnesota-Duluth despite having a dominant freshman season where he was the best defenseman on the National Championship side. He was more known for having a very solid WJC that year outshining the more highly touted Jon Merrill for the US. Had a real breakout in Canes training camp and started the season in the NHL rather then as expected in the AHL. After a brief stint in the AHL early season he would spend the rest of the year on the Canes leading all rookie dmen in goal scoring, time on ice, and leading all Canes dmen in time on ice. Not sure what to expect yet for this season but could possibly be a #1 dman for the Canes within a few years.

3) Wants
a) Top 6 winger - no longer need, signed Alexander Semin
b) Top 4 defensive dman
c) 3rd line C
d) Size on 4th line

4) Surplus
a) Puck moving defensemen
b) NHL ready forward prospects (Bowman, Boychuk, Samson, Dalpe, Nash)
c) Checking line depth

Trade Bait
a) Jamie McBain (may not be on the market after re-signing this offseason on bargain contract)
b) Jussi Jokinen
c) Zach Boychuk

5) Prospects
1 - Ryan Murphy - D, Kitchener Rangers
possibly the most talented offensive defenseman prospect in all of hockey right now. Tremendous skating ability, hockey sense, creativity, and heavy shot. Only downside is that he's a bit undersized so it will be interesting to see how he keeps up with the pro game.
ETA: 2012-13 or 2013-14

2 - Victor Rask - C, Calgary Hitmen
Rask, after being touted as a possible top 5 pick heading into the 2011 draft, fell to the Canes in the 2nd round where they quickly snagged the playmaking center from Sweden. From there he went on to play in the WHL where he had a solid season finishing 3rd among all first-year WHL players. His footspeed isn't the best, but he's strong in all zones and is competent as both a goal scorer and playmaker. He'll either play in Charlotte or Calgary next season, but there are questions as to if there will be roster space in Charlotte depending on what happens with the impending lockout and how long it will last.
ETA: 2014-15

3 - Zac Dalpe - C/RW, Charlotte Checkers
After a tremendous rookie season with Charlotte Dalpe entered the Canes training camp with every expectation of taking the open top 6 forward spot left by Cole's departure for Montreal. That didn't happen and he was injured in camp, leading to a slow recovery for Dalpe who didn't nearly match his numbers from the prior season. That said, there's a ton of room for optimism heading into next season that he'll bounce back and may even take a spot in camp.
ETA: 2012-13 or 2013-14

4 - Jeremy Welsh - C, Union College/Carolina Hurricanes
Slipped under the radar to emerge as one of the best power forward prospects at Union the past couple seasons, enroute to a Frozen Four appearance this year. Big, strong two-way forward that loves to initiate contact. Could use some work on his foot speed but otherwise looks to be a solid top 9er for the Canes both short and long term.
ETA: 2012-13

5 - Philip Di Giuseppe - LW, Michigan University
Had a big Freshman season for the Wolverines finishing 6th in team scoring as one of the youngest players in college hockey. Solid overall offensive game and a decent two-way game makes him a strong prospect, but he's a few years off.
ETA: 2015-16

6) Strengths
a) Deep and big down the middle with the Staal bros (6'4, 6'4), Welsh (6'3), Brent (6'0), Dalpe (6'1), Nash (6'1), and Rask (6'2)
b) Goaltending, Ward's been among the best in the game the past 4 seasons.
c) Checking line depth. Brent, Nodl, Dwyer, Stewart, Wallace, Blanchard, Nash, and Brett Sutter are all NHL capable players.
d) Puck moving defensemen. Few teams have the combination of quality and depth in this regard that the Canes do.

7) Weaknesses
a) Physical defensemen. Gleason and Harrison have a physical element to their game, but unless Faulk takes that next step towards being a dominant overall dman and Pitkanen utilizes his size more often they'll be lacking in this regard.
b) Top 6 wingers. One of Chad LaRose, Drayson Bowman, or Jiri Tlusty is in the top 6 as of now... enough said. - fixed, signed Alexander Semin
c) Goaltending depth. The prospect ranks are solid but a few years off, and with the re-entry of Andersen to the draft, Murphy signing in the KHL, and Boucher being injured to start the season leaves the organizational depth chart of available goalies at Ward, Peters, Muse... yeah

8) Draft Picks
2013: all Canes picks, no extras
2014: all Canes picks, no extras

9) Cap Situation
8 million under current Cap Floor. Might be addressed with rumored interest in signing Alexander Semin and/or changes in the upcoming CBA. New co-owner group and a local TV contract that triples the prior one in annual income opens up room for a lot more spending then was available to the team in prior seasons.

10) Season Projection
Likely contender for Southeast Title. 3-6 range in the East points wise, but could find themselves in the 7-10 pack with some bad luck or other signings in the East.

Last edited by DaveG: 07-27-2012 at 05:09 PM.
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