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Category: Carolina-Hurricanes

Joe Nieuwendyk On Joining The Carolina Hurricanes

from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,

His next gig will allow him to stay in Dallas with his family while at the same time reconnecting with the NHL.

``I enjoyed my year with helping my son’s hockey team and now I can continue to do that,” Nieuwendyk told ESPN.com this week after being named pro scout/advisor to Carolina Hurricanes GM Ron Francis.

``I had breakfast with Ronnie in the spring and we continued to talk during the summer. I have a lot of respect for Ron,’’ said Nieuwendyk. ``I played with him on the Leafs in ’04 and we have mutual friends who work for him in Carolina. It just feels like something I wanted to do and hopefully I can help him any which way I can.’’

When Jay Feaster was fired as GM in Calgary last season, rumors -- well-founded ones -- spread that Flames president of hockey operations Brian Burke had great interest in bringing former Flames star Nieuwendyk in as Feaser's replacement.

While Nieuwendyk has never talked publicly about that specific possibility, it is clear he’s not ready yet to jump back into that demanding lifestyle of running an NHL team. 

more plus a few other hockey topics...

Filed in: NHL Teams, Carolina Hurricanes, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: carolina+hurricanes, joe+nieuwendyk

A New Season For Cam Ward

from Chip Alexander of the News & Observer,

It may seem a contradiction, but Carolina Hurricanes goalie Cam Ward had an uneasy, productive summer.

For Ward, the uneasiness came in persistent speculation he might be traded. Asked this week if he believed he might have played his last game for the Canes, Ward said, “I think I’d be lying if I said no. I didn’t know what was going to happen.”

The trade rumors spiked around the NHL draft and then the start of free agency, but there was no move. The tension subsided, Ward said, when general manager Ron Francis called to say Ward and Anton Khudobin would be the Canes’ two goaltenders this season.

“It was an important summer in my career,” Ward said. “These last couple of years haven’t gone the way I expected of myself. I feel like that’s behind me and you move forward. I’ve done everything I can to prepare myself to play with confidence.”

Ward, 30, said he intensified his physical conditioning, looking to add more muscle. He changed his diet, looking to improve his nutrition.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Carolina Hurricanes, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: cam+ward

Carolina Hurricanes Hire Joe Nieuwendyk As Pro Scout And Advisor

RALEIGH, NC – Ron Francis, Executive Vice President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the team has hired Hockey Hall of Famer Joe Nieuwendyk to serve as a professional scout and advisor.

“Joe brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to our organization,” said Francis. “He will be based in Dallas, and will be a major asset to the Hurricanes in player evaluations.”

Nieuwendyk, 47, served as the general manager for the Dallas Stars from 2009-2013, acquiring many of the players that formed the foundation of the Stars’ playoff team in 2014, including Alex Goligoski, Kari Lehtonen, Cody Eakin, Alex Chiasson, Ray Whitney, Antoine Roussel and Brenden Dillon. Prior to joining the Stars, Nieuwendyk served in advisory roles for the Maple Leafs and Panthers, and served as assistant general manager for Canada’s silver-medal-winning team at the 2009 International Ice Hockey Federation World Championship.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Carolina Hurricanes, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: joe+nieuwendyk

Sale Rumors Will Only Get Stronger Regarding The Carolina Hurricanes

from Luke DeCock of the News & Observer,

Thursday morning on his radio show, Dan Patrick claimed that “a financial person who’s involved in this” told him the NHL would have a team in Las Vegas by 2016. He further claimed the Carolina Hurricanes were one of two teams that could move there.

“I guess he’s asking an exorbitant price for his team,” Patrick said, after initially identifying Hurricanes owner Peter Karmanos as the owner of the Nashville Predators. “That’s also a possibility from what I’m told. They could relocate as well.”

Patrick is probably right about the first part. Expansion, to Las Vegas and beyond, appears inevitable. As for the second, just consider this kind of talk the price of five straight seasons without a playoff appearance. As ticket sales and corporate sponsorships dwindle, as Karmanos sells off chunks of the team to local investors, these kinds of rumors will only intensify.

But Karmanos is getting more involved with the Hurricanes, not less, even as he continues to seek investors.

continued
 

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Jeff O’Neill On The Carolina Hurricanes

from Katie Strang of ESPN,

Though the Carolina Hurricanes made significant changes in their front office and behind the bench – Ron Francis took over as general manager while former Detroit Red Wings assistant coach Bill Peters replaced Kirk Mueller as head coach -- following the team’s 13th place finish last season, the personnel has not fluctuated much.

And considering that the roster remains largely intact, Carolina’s top players really have to step it up, according to former Hurricane Jeff O’Neill.

“When you have a lot of long-term [contracts], guys locked in to big money, there is a philosophy around the league that you are only as good as your bad contracts,” O’Neill told ESPN.com in a recent telephone conversation.

And that leaves at least a few players under some pretty intense scrutiny for the 2014-15 season. Chief among them, according to O’Neill, is goaltender Cam Ward. 

continued

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  Tags: jeff+o'neill

Don Waddell Is The Money Man In Carolina

from Luke DeCock of the News & Observer,

Don Waddell has been around the NHL long enough to hear the alarm bells ringing before he even arrived in town as President of Gale Force Sports & Entertainment, parent company of the Carolina Hurricanes. The man who oversaw the sale and move of a struggling Sun Belt franchise to Canada is joining the Hurricanes?

“That was the first thing I had to address with the staff,” Waddell acknowledged this week over breakfast, one of dozens of get-acquainted meals he has brokered since taking over as team president last month.

His message: Waddell is here to grow the franchise, not move it.

Waddell is best known as the longtime general manager of the Atlanta Thrashers, a job he held for 12 years, but he has considerable experience on the business side of things as well. He at one point oversaw the Thrashers, Atlanta Hawks and Philips Arena, before the hockey team moved to Winnipeg, ran minor-league franchises in San Diego and Orlando and served as a consultant for ownership groups interested in putting an NHL team in Seattle.

continued
 

Filed in: NHL Teams, Carolina Hurricanes, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: don+waddell

Eric Staal On The Upcoming Season

from Michael Smith of CarolinaHurricanes.com,

At the end of the 2013-14 season, the fifth straight year in which the Carolina Hurricanes had missed the playoffs, captain Eric Staal once again faced the media in a haze of disappointment.

He was dejected, and he was blunt.

“I know everybody is frustrated,” he said. “I know our fans are frustrated. Management, staff, players, everyone is. That’s not a secret, and that needs to change.”

He was asked how it could change.

“Bottom line: We’ve just got to get better, all-around.”

continued

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  Tags: eric+staal

A Look At The Carolina Hurricanes

NHL.com is previewing all 30 NHL teams during the month of August, today the Carolina Hurricanes...

from Davis Harper of NHL.com,

Asked about the lack of summer splashes, (Ron)Francis noted the Hurricanes had "good pieces in place" and pointed to recent roster additions as a sign they are not content with another early summer.

"It wasn't that we were opposed to making a deal, we just needed a deal that would make us better," Francis said. "You look at what we've done … last year, we brought in a lot of new faces at the beginning of the season, and a lot of those guys had pretty good years. [Anton] Khudobin, [Andrej] Sekera, Gerbe, Hainsey played well for us.

"It's not like we've been standing pat with the same lineup the past five or six years."

While he refused to make excuses for the team's often-stagnant performances in 2013-14, Francis could not avoid the injuries that lay like a dark cloud over PNC Arena from training camp on through the regular season.

more

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Chad LaRose Interested In A Return To Hockey

from Chip Alexander of the News & Observer,

Chad LaRose may still have some hockey left to play.

Carolina Hurricanes general manager Ron Francis said Friday the former Canes forward has expressed an interest in returning to hockey after sitting out the 2013-2014 season.

Francis said Canes assistant coach Rod Brind'Amour had stayed in touch with LaRose and said LaRose had asked for a meeting to discuss a possible return. LaRose, a free agent, could be offered a professional tryout to attend the Canes' preseason training camp.

"I'd like to talk to him," Francis said. "He took a year off and obviously he'd need to earn his way back. There are some options. We could get him to camp on a tryout. He could start the season in Charlotte (AHL), show that he could still do it.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, Carolina Hurricanes, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: chad+larose

Do You Consider The Carolina Hurricanes A Playoff Team?

from Chip Alexander of the News & Observer,

Peter Karmanos Jr. turned heads a few days ago when he said the Carolina Hurricanes were a “very good hockey team.”

Karmanos is the Canes’ owner, and a little hubris is to be expected. But the Canes have missed the Stanley Cup playoffs in each of the past five seasons. They were 13th last season in the NHL’s Eastern Conference. They had a woeful power play and were only a little better at home than on the road.

Karmanos’ belief is that a new coaching staff and new system, a healthier team and the continued development of younger players will translate into more wins next season. General manager Ron Francis is another believer, generally standing pat in free agency this past week while other Metropolitan Division rivals made significant signings....

“We didn’t think it was necessary to kind of blow everything up,” Francis said. “We still think we have a lot of good pieces. I know people are going to shake their heads a little bit when you say that. … When you don’t make the playoffs everybody wants to see change.”

Francis said he got a “fresh opinion” on the players from new coach Bill Peters. The management team weighed in. Karmanos, who writes the checks, had his say.

“At this point we felt we had a good enough team to compete and make the playoffs,” Francis said. “Now it’s up to us to get on the ice and start winning hockey games, and I think that’s the best way to convince anyone.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Carolina Hurricanes, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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