Blog Entry

'Canes are conceding

Posted on: February 11, 2008 3:16 pm

The Carolina Hurricanes are less than two years removed from winning the Stanley Cup and only a point out of first place in the Southeast Division, but they've admitted  they're not going anywhere this season.

Not officially of course - - you can't do that with two months left in the season and still hope to sell tickets -- though Carolina said as much today by trading away one of its top scorers and a physical defenseman in the most notable deal of the season so far. The Hurricanes sent left wing Cory Stillman and defenseman Mike Commodore to the Ottawa Senators for defenseman Joe Corvo and Patrick Eaves, a deal that for Carolina was more about money than upgrading the team for a playoff run.

Both Stillman and Commodore and unrestricted free agents this summer and would have been outside the Hurricanes budget parameters, so getting something for them now made sense for GM Jim Rutherford.  Especially since the Hurricanes as currently constructed do not look like a team with a long playoff run in it, if Carolina gets there at all. Corvo at least is a puck-moving defenseman who is signed for two more years, and he gives the Hurricanes something they're missing on the back end, while and Eaves can skate and makes less than a  million dollars. But neither makes the a Carolina team in a death struggle for a playoff spot better than it was before.

You can't say that about the guys going the other way. Stillman, who missed much of last season after shoulder surgery, has 21 goals so far and he's the kind of player who steps it up  in the playoffs. He played a key role for Tamp Bay when the Lightning won the 2004 Stanley and for the Hurricanes during their 2006 title march, and he's the top six forward the Senators have been looking for the help take the pressure off the top line of Daniel Alfredsson, Dany Heatley and Jason Spezza. Commodore meanwhile, is a physical presence, which never hurts to have in the playoffs.

Both Stillman and Commodore could be gone after the season, but right now they look like pretty good additions to a team that believes it can win it all.

Category: NHL

Since: Jan 4, 2007
Posted on: February 13, 2008 10:13 pm

'Canes are conceding

Fresh off the Devil/Sen game...2 interesting plays I picked up in the second period.

1) Powerplay Senators- Stillman playing the point on the first line, misplays the puck and coughs it up to John Madden for a clear-cut breakaway--> Sens bailed out by an incredible save by Gerber.

2) Later on in the period, Devils finally maintaining some pressure.  Puck goes to corner, Commodore has some trouble handling it, Elias and Parise take it away, Parise pass to Rachunek-->goal.

Some sloppy play by the two new guys.  I'm not looking to back up my orginal post...because I definately feel both of these new players will play a big role on this team, but Senators fans better hope it was out of nervers.

Since: Jan 7, 2007
Posted on: February 13, 2008 11:18 am

'Canes are conceding

1...nobody watches alot of hurricane hockey

This nobody does, and the guy was correct. Commodore was looking a little lost back there, but I think it has more to do with the way they have been asked to play by their coaches. Carolina is still a very high scoring team. What it needs is a little more help from the back end and to be able to get a defenseman or two on the ice during a power play. Carolina has been burned short-handed so many nights because of the 4 and 5 forward power play setups they have been rolling out. Getting a defensive puck mover is a good thing. I will be glad to see what kind of help Eaves will be, but for the time being, it appears Carolina is getting better by addition and subtraction.

Since: Feb 12, 2008
Posted on: February 12, 2008 7:55 pm

'Canes are conceding

Several hockey channels, maybe, but no cups recently, eh? (oh, yeah, lol)

Stillman hasn't played well for weeks and has been looking a bit slow, and Commodore will be missed mostly due to ice presence and personality.  We'll just have to see if Corvo is the piece they need and not Ozolinsh II.  I do think it's a good pickup for Ottawa too as they look toward the playoffs.  Perhaps it is a good move on both ends; both teams were playing like they had to do something significant.

All those analysts said Samsonov was finished too.

Hey, I'll pull for Ottawa any time - when they play Buffalo.


Since: Apr 8, 2007
Posted on: February 12, 2008 3:32 pm

'Canes are conceding

Commodore a "stay-home" D?  Ha ha ha ha ha!  You're killing me!!  You obviously don't watch a lot of Hurricanes hockey.  Mike Commodore has regressed from his 2006 form badly

well for 1...nobody watches alot of hurricane hockey(lol) and for 2...the entire cane team has a new...better scene for them to excel in,i bet they do....and so does every hockey analisist on every hockey channel(yes we have several hockey be snippy all you like i think the sens hit it large in this trade

Since: Apr 8, 2007
Posted on: February 12, 2008 3:28 pm

'Canes are conceding


Since: Feb 12, 2008
Posted on: February 12, 2008 12:11 pm

'Canes are conceding

Carolina's defense is and has been for two years their weakest area. They need someone to run the point, someone to be able to skate with the likes of Vinny and St. Louis--they have major needs. Can't believe anyone would think their defense works.

Since: Feb 12, 2008
Posted on: February 12, 2008 12:09 pm

'Canes are conceding

Commodore has never been an orthodox d man, and he has never been "stay at home" as a Cane.  He can't run the point, and is greatest asset is that he will throw himself at the puck with reckless abandon when he is really into the game.  That said, he is one of our best defensemen, which shows how old and slow or young and weak or defense is.  Improving the defense is a good plan--but this move was clearly a move to play for three years from now.  Eaves for Stillman?  An injured Eaves for Stillman??  Maybe some day . . . Can;t wait to go to the game Thursday--we will either be inspired or flat as a pancake.

Since: Jan 15, 2008
Posted on: February 12, 2008 12:05 pm

'Canes are conceding

Carolina doesn't need defensive help.  It needs better goaltending (John Graham is the worst backup in the NHL and why Laviolette loves him is a mystery to me).  Wake up, Ward!  The Hurricanes rely on scoring to win games--a big, immobile D like Commodore makes no sense, especially as he didn't continue to progress offensively after 2006.  If the Sens think they're getting another Chara, then they'll be disappointed.  I like this trade for Carolina and would disagree that they're "giving up" or "conceding" to ATL or WAS--what have either of those teams done to improve?  ATL is shopping Hossa: that's a boss move for a contender!  Yessir!  And WAS has #8 and...nope, that's it.  The Caps have nothing to offer in a trade and lots of holes that need filling.  It's not good to lose Stillman's scoring for the oft-injured Eaves, but Carolina has forwards to spare and got exactly what it wanted in the offensive-minded Corvo.

Good luck to the Sens.  You got two players you needed.  But I still like this deal more on our end.

Since: Dec 11, 2006
Posted on: February 12, 2008 11:55 am

'Canes are conceding

I agree with Ban.  I think this is an excellent trade.  Don't get me wrong, Commodore and Stillman are big losses but this team, like those 2, are not consistent this year.  New blood is always good under those circumstances.  Also, Corvo and Eaves could both be locked up for a few years and are younger than the other 2.  The Canes aren't going far if they make the playoffs but at least they are trying to make them.

Since: Aug 30, 2006
Posted on: February 12, 2008 8:20 am

'Canes are conceding

I think the trade was at the tight time and with the right personnel.  Corvo is a good puck moving d-man and is sharp on the power play.  2 things that the Canes do not have.  It will be nice to have somebody, other than another forward, who can hit the seam pass and catch Staal or Cole in stride at the other teams blue line. 

Stillman has been playing mediocre at best over the past month.  Too many turnovers and bad passes.  He will do well with a change in scenery.  I never liked Eaves in Ottawa, because he was good.  Seems like a player with skill and likes to get under opponents skin a bit.  I would have to ask an Ottawa fan if they would consider him to be "gritty" because I have not seen him play on a regular basis.

I liked the Samsonov pickup and I like this trade.  Look who well Samsonov has fit in, he is scoring goals and tallying helpers on a consistent basis.  I think that Corvo will be the bigger impact of he 2 in this move.  The Canes needed a blue liner that can bring some offense and power play help to the game.

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