Hurricanes

Forslund: Lindholm is a great fit for Hurricanes

Posted July 1, 2013

FILE: The Carolina Hurricanes celebrate after a first period goal during the Carolina Hurricanes vs. Washington Capitals NHL hockey game, Tuesday, April 2, 2013 in Raleigh, NC.

Despite many reports Sunday that the Hurricanes were shopping their first-round pick, Carolina stayed pat and drafted center Elias Lindholm from Sweden with the No. 5 overall selection in the 2013 NHL Draft.

“Lindholm is going to be a very good player,” Hurricanes television play-by-play announcer John Forslund said while joining Mike and Mark on The World’s Strongest Morning Show on 620 the Buzz Monday morning. The Hurricanes tabbed Lindholm No.4 on their draft board.

“If you’re at No. 5, why not take the prime player,” Forslund said. “You can’t have enough down the middle. If you’re going to win, it’s not going to just be Eric and Jordan (Staal). It’s going to have to be another playing back there.”

The Hurricanes are unsure who will play center on the third and fourth lines as they enter the offseason. If the 18-year-old, 6-foot, Lindholm fails to make the Hurricanes roster, he will play the season for the professional Swedish hockey team Brynäs IF instead of the Charlotte Checkers. Last season, Lindholm recorded 11 goals and 19 assists in 48 games with Brynäs IF.

Forslund said the Hurricanes narrowed their choices for the fifth pick to Sean Monahan, Valeri Nichushkin and Elias Lindholm.

The Hurricanes were one pick shy of top defenseman Seth Jones, who fell to No. 4, but the Nashville Predators were reluctant to give up their No. 1 rated player. Forslund said hypothetically, if the Hurricanes wanted Jones, they would have had to trade Jeff Skinner and the fifth pick in exchange for the Tampa Bay Lightning’s third pick.

The Hurricanes dealt the 35th overall pick and Jamie McBain to the Buffalo Sabres for veteran defenseman Andrej Sekera. Sekera joins the Hurricanes with a two-year, $5.5 million contract.

The 6-foot defenseman has the opportunity to be a top-four defenseman and is projected to be paired with Tim Gleason. The 27-year-old recorded two goals, 10 assists and four penalty minutes in 37 games last season with the Sabres.

“Player-for-player, they improved,” said Forslund. “Sekera is an excellent skater. He can get the puck out of trouble on his own. He has excellent mobility and moves the puck well, at times.”

General Manager Jim Rutherford still has several question marks on defense, including Joni Pitkanen and Brett Bellemore. Pitkanen is recovering from a broken heel suffered in April against the Washington Capitals and is set to make $4.5 million this season. The team currently has spent around $60 of their $64,300,000 million for the 2013-14 season and still needs to add muscle to their blue line. The free agency period officially begins Friday, July 5.

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  • juniorsk831 Jul 6, 5:17 p.m.

    Who cares, the Canes suck and always will!

    — Posted by The Greatest Ever

    Why do you bother to go any games if you feel that way?

  • kheffn Jul 2, 5:23 p.m.

    Man, I would have done Skinner and my #5 for Seth Jones

    — Posted by Willie_11

    My thoughts exactly. Skinner had a great first year but teams figured out how to keep him from scoring. Plus they now get under his skin and get him to take stupid penalties. Not to mention the concussions. Jones is exactly what the team needs.

  • jbengel Jul 2, 11:01 a.m.

    Ok, yes we have another forward/center. But what about the defense. we have no defense as usual.... View More

    — Posted by MadMaxx

    The only way you'll see Rutherford fired is if he's convicted in a scandal for stealing organs form orphans and selling them to zoos. And even then it's iffy. He's got the job security of a Supreme Court Justice.

  • jbengel Jul 2, 9:34 a.m.

    So, I decided to go to capgeek and do some numbers crunching. There really ain't a lot of money... View More

    — Posted by ktstcanes

    Agree - heard this about their cap space back in the spring. Think there will be any takers for... View More

    — Posted by StunGunn

    Takers for Pitkanen? Unlikely. If you're looking for a guy to turn over pucks at the blue line until he can manage to blow up a knee or something and spend the rest of the year on IR, you can find somebody a lot cheaper than 4.5 mil. Depending on when he can be activated from IR, JR might be able to use a compliance buyout for him and reclaim that cap space, but you can't buy a guy out while he's on the IRL.

  • hurricane04343 Jul 1, 8:45 p.m.

    Anyone who doesn't like this pick is frankly an *****. Lindholm is going to be an all-star one day.

    There are no top 4 defensemen available. JR tried to trade the pick but the only offers were for forwards. With Jones off the board, there were no defensemen to pick (Nurse will take 3 years minimum to even break the roster).

    And after all that, they did actually get a top 4 defenseman.

    Free agency is not an option for a defenseman because there literally aren't any. There is one, maybe two guys who would fit into the top 4, and they all would want $4 million+ salaries for 3-4 years, which would be a terrible knee- decision.

    Man, I would have done Skinner and my #5 for Seth Jones

    — Posted by Willie_11

    That's why you aren't a GM. Skinner + Lindholm for Jones? That's a joke.

  • Willie_11 Jul 1, 8:34 p.m.

    Who cares, the Canes suck and always will!

    — Posted by The Greatest Ever

    You must have been looking into the mirror and gotten confused.

    — Posted by kenshi

    ...try to get over your defensive nature, he/she is just expressing his/her opinion.

    — Posted by hsiflee

    Haha. I don't blame Kenshi - if his or her opinion sucks, call him or her out on it.

  • Willie_11 Jul 1, 8:33 p.m.

    Man, I would have done Skinner and my #5 for Seth Jones

  • hsiflee Jul 1, 8:09 p.m.

    Who cares, the Canes suck and always will!

    — Posted by The Greatest Ever

    You must have been looking into the mirror and gotten confused.

    — Posted by kenshi

    ...try to get over your defensive nature, he/she is just expressing his/her opinion.

  • hsiflee Jul 1, 8:05 p.m.

    what was he going to say...He isn't a great fit?

  • StunGunn Jul 1, 8:00 p.m.

    So, I decided to go to capgeek and do some numbers crunching. There really ain't a lot of money... View More

    — Posted by ktstcanes

    Agree - heard this about their cap space back in the spring. Think there will be any takers for Pitkanen?

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