banner
Hurricanes

NHL analyst Ward expects big things from Canes

Posted September 27, 2011
Updated September 28, 2011

The Carolina Hurricanes travel to Winnipeg Wednesday for an 8:30 p.m. preseason match-up with the Jets.

The Canes head into the game with a 1-2 preseason record and the management looking to make the last cuts before opening night Oct. 7 at the RBC Center.

Three-time Stanley Cup champion and former Hurricane Aaron Ward joined Adam and Joe Wednesday on 99.9 FM The Fan and said, despite the losing preseason record, the team is in a good position heading into the season.

“The best thing for a general manager to have is competition at a position, especially if it is someone you just drafted,” Ward said of the Canes depth on defense relative to top draft pick Ryan Murphy. “Murphy particularly has been getting a lot of attention, and they are talking about how this guy has the potential to make the team.”

Jim Rutherford, Hurricanes president and general manager, has been clear about his expectations this year, and that is for the team to make a run for it.

“That sends a message to the players,” said Ward, “There is always a chance to make an impact on a team where there is a need.”

Ward said it’s about finding the right pairings on the ice.

One spot that will have to be filled is that of Erik Cole who signed with Montreal during the offseason.

“There’s talk about [Zac] Dalpe. When you lose a component, there’s an opportunity for a young guy to seize it. As I understand it, Dalpe’s giving them an opportunity to maybe move Skinner to another line,” said Ward. “How do you get past the loss of Erik Cole? That’s yet to be seen.”

Ward said the true test will be how the players adapt to regular season play. And he said even players who aren’t fighting for a spot have an opportunity to really succeed this year.

“I think there’s a changing of the guard going on right now. [Cam Ward]’s always been an upper tier goalie, but I think some of the perennial goalies are possibly moving on maybe this year or next, it’s another opportunity for Cam to be that guy this year,” said Ward.

"The good thing for Cam is he is familiar with his environment and he doesn’t have to learn a lot.”

Ward also expects a lot out of another longtime Hurricane, captain Eric Staal.

“He’s dedicated himself a little more in the offseason to his preparation. The sky’s the limit for him,” said Ward.

“Maybe he’s more comfortable in his skin, and he’s got a full year of being a captain behind him. It’s tough sometimes for a young guy to say not only do I have to focus on my game, lead this team in points, lead this team in performance, but I also have to comfortable with the fact that I have young guys around me and the responsibility falls on me to make sure they’re prepared. This season should be a good test, but I expect a lot more from Eric Staal.”

15 Comments

This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • ktstcanes Sep 29, 9:08 p.m.

    "As an 18-year-old, Murphy cannot play in the American Hockey Leauge; he can either stay with the Canes for the season or be sent back to Kitchner, a decision that will be have to made before he plays 10 games with Carolina. With seven signed defenseman already on the roster, there’s a good chance we will see Murphy returned to Juniors."

  • taylorcaniac Sep 28, 9:27 p.m.

    taylorcaniac and caniac nc, you both are WRONG, per the AHL website the minimum age is 18 not... View More

    — Posted by caniacman

    That is for players from European leagues coming over to play. Recall the Skinner situation from last year. He could've either stayed with the 'Canes or been sent back to Kitchener. It's the same this time around (even involving same minor league team).

    As an example of someone who IS eligible, there's guys like Victor Rask. He's 18 and since he played in Euro league, he's able to play in Charlotte (though I don't know for sure if that is the plan).

    In the end, I see Murphy getting his 9 game tryout (1 short of 10 to avoid contract year kicking in) and then being sent to Kitchener.

  • ktstcanes Sep 28, 9:02 p.m.

    Sorry, I meant Jordan Staal.

  • ktstcanes Sep 28, 9:00 p.m.

    To C-man. Jared Staal was in this same situation a few years ago. If he plays 10 games in the NHL, then his contract kicks in. He also had signed his contract with the Pens. The Pens had to make the choice at game 9 whether to keep him or send him back to his junior team.. Don't know the rules, but I recall this being the case.

  • caniacman Sep 28, 3:28 p.m.

    taylorcaniac and caniac nc, you both are WRONG, per the AHL website the minimum age is 18 not 19! He can play in Charlotte. Usually sending back to juniors is for those that have not signed their entry level contract which Murphy has done. Now yes they could send him back to juniors and not start the entry level contract, but I do not see them doing that. Getting a year at the AHL and being available for a call up with Faulk is probably what they are looking at. If they wanted to send him back to juniors there would be no rush to sign a deal.

  • Cragsdale Sep 28, 2:52 p.m.

    I will however be tailgating on teh 7th :) if many of you all will be going or anyone wants to meet, be a great opportunity at this game. I know a lot of us have our college disputes but most of us have always agreed upon our support for the Canes :)

    Looking forward to a great season :)

  • Cragsdale Sep 28, 2:50 p.m.

    jgunn, I have always had mixed feelings about Cole. When he was hot, he was great, but in my mind, he was seldom hot which meant he was just dead weight around the ice most of his shifts. He did have flashes of grandness, but I dunno, I still can't say I am unhappy he left, not happy.

  • GunnyGoesBaaaarf Sep 28, 2:35 p.m.

    Hate that Arron left, good player.

    — Posted by Cragsdale

    I HATE that too. At least his name is on The Cup.

    Time will tell how this year goes. There is some good young talent battling for a roster spot. I still wish Cole was on the team, but oh well...

  • CaniacNC Sep 28, 1:55 p.m.

    Murphy can not go back to juniors. He signed his nhl deal so he is either in Charlotte or... View More

    — Posted by caniacman

    Murphy can play 9 games and then be sent back to Kitchener. As taylorcaniac said.. he is too young to play at the AHL (must be 19).

  • taylorcaniac Sep 28, 1:41 p.m.

    Murphy can not go back to juniors. He signed his nhl deal so he is either in Charlotte or... View More

    — Posted by caniacman

    Actually, due to his age, Murphy is not eligible to play in the AHL. It's the same situation we had with Skinner last year. Either he stays up with the 'Canes, or he heads back to junior for the year. Signing the contract doesn't bind him to the NHL level either, as returning to juniors merely delays the start of the contract duration.

More...

 

 

  • CBB: North Carolina vs. Ohio State

    Tomorrow at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • CBB: UCLA vs Kentucky

    Tomorrow at 3:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: San Diego at San Francisco

    Tomorrow at 8:25 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Panthers vs. Cleveland

    Monday at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • WBB: Duke vs. UMass Lowell

    Tonight at 6:30 on 620am

  • NFL: Philadelphia at Washington

    Tomorrow at 4:25 pm on 620am

Scoreboard
Local
Final
CAR 4
TOR 1
Final
DUKE 66
UCONN 56
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
CHA
 
Final
CHI 103
NYK 97
Final
HOU 90
NOP 99
Final
SAC 107
MIL 108
Final
GSW 114
OKC 109
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
CHA
 
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
UTA
 
7:30pm Tonight
CLE
BRK
 
7:30pm Tonight
BOS
MIN
 
7:30pm Tonight
DET
TOR
 
7:30pm Tonight
MIA
WAS
 
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
CHI
 
8:00pm Tonight
SAN
POR
 
9:00pm Tonight
DEN
LAC
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAL
OKC
 
Final
RICE 72
STTHOMASTX 61
 
Final
UVA 70
CLST 54
Final
LIU 69
FIU 58
 
Final
STET 67
GSOUT 76
 
Final
QUIN 80
LEH 65
 
Final
SFLA 69
SHU 89
Final
RICH 65
SALA 54
Final
CAN 60
USB 59
 
Final
DEL 62
TEMPL 82
Final
WCU 56
WRST 69
 
Final
VERM 56
YALE 57
 
Final
SDKST 75
IDST 72
 
Final
RIDE 62
MRGST 48
 
Final
LATU 79
NICST 54
 
Final
CHAR 75
APP 65
Final
MISS 71
CCAR 68
 
Final
DUKE 66
UCONN 56
Final
BRAD 80
EUREK 38
 
Final
PEAY 76
OAKC 52
 
Final
JST 66
SMISS 46
 
Final
SD 55
MNTST 53
 
Final
UAB 70
LSU 79
Final
EVAN 81
OHIO 69
 
Final
CSFU 72
CSDH 50
 
Final
ORST 90
DEP 59
Final
PAC 69
NEV 65
Final
USF 77
PORST 40
 
Final
IDAHO 86
WALLA 39
 
Final
UTST 57
CALST 56
 
1:30pm Today
YOUNG
WILB
 
2:00pm Today
TULA
JST
 
6:00pm Tonight
RAD
SIENA
 
7:00pm Tonight
MERC
COOK
 
7:00pm Tonight
BUCK
CASEWEST
 
7:00pm Tonight
LIB
CPNC
 
7:00pm Tonight
SCAR
CLEM
 
7:00pm Tonight
CMICH
CONC
 
7:00pm Tonight
MIAMI
EKENT
 
7:00pm Tonight
GWEBB
HIWASSEE
 
7:00pm Tonight
ODU
MDES
 
7:00pm Tonight
BUF
NIAG
 
7:00pm Tonight
KSU
NCAT
 
7:00pm Tonight
FAM
UNF
 
7:00pm Tonight
NORST
NARZ
 
7:00pm Tonight
DART
NILL
 
7:00pm Tonight
MORE
NKENTUCKY
 
7:00pm Tonight
UCSB
SDCHR
 
7:00pm Tonight
STJ
GAELS
 
7:00pm Tonight
ALA
STILL
 
7:00pm Tonight
HAMP
TENST
 
7:00pm Tonight
TENN
TENT
 
7:00pm Tonight
WMARY
WSHMD
 
7:30pm Tonight
FLGC
FUR
 
7:30pm Tonight
CALST
SDKST
 
8:00pm Tonight
MTST
CHAT
 
8:00pm Tonight
NDAK
DICKINSON
 
8:00pm Tonight
LAMON
LSUALEX
 
8:00pm Tonight
PRIN
LIP
 
8:00pm Tonight
LAM
MLGN
 
8:00pm Tonight
MINN
SEAT
 
8:00pm Tonight
LOYC
SUTAH
 
8:00pm Tonight
SELA
WINT
 
8:05pm Tonight
SILL
NO
 
9:00pm Tonight
MARQ
ALAAM
 
9:00pm Tonight
TTU
ARKPB
 
9:00pm Tonight
DEN
COLST
 
9:00pm Tonight
CREI
TXPA
 
10:00pm Tonight
CAL
EWASH
 
10:05pm Tonight
UTST
IDST
 
11:00pm Tonight
UTEP
ARZ
 
11:59pm Tonight
CHAM
HAW
 
Final
PIT 1
COL 0
Final
PHI 1
FLA 2
Final
CAR 4
TOR 1
Final
CLB 4
WAS 5
Final
MON 1
ANA 2
Final
SJS 4
EDM 3
Final
LOS 6
STL 4
7:00pm Tonight
NJD
TAM
 
7:30pm Tonight
OTT
ANA
 
7:30pm Tonight
DET
NYI
 
8:00pm Tonight
WIN
BOS
 
9:00pm Tonight
CAL
DAL
 
Final
JAC 21
TEN 13