Canes rookie eyes opportunity for immediate impact

Posted June 27, 2012

— There's no doubt the Carolina Hurricanes made the biggest news on draft day when the Canes acquired Jordan Staal from Pittsburgh but that deal does leave the Canes with an open spot for a third line center. The player that could fill that void has exactly one NHL game under his belt.

Jeremy Welsh has earned the attention of Hurricanes executives. Of the 13 players at the team's conditioning camp, no one has a better opportunity to make an immediate impact than him.

Welsh could be the team's third-line center when the season begins.

"There's an opportunity there," acknowledged Welsh. "I want to earn it over the summer, and this week, just put in a good showing."

Jeremy Welsh Welsh: Want to make most of opportunity

Last season, the Canes called Welsh up to the NHL roster for one game. He impressed his bosses and gained from the experience.

"That was the best-case scenario just to get that taste and get a feel for things. I think it was a bit of a confidence boost that I could do it and I could play, so rather than worrying about it all summer and not knowing what you're getting into, it's nice to have a bit of an understanding," Welsh said.

"If I was him right now, I'd look at the situation and see there are opportunities here," said Hurricanes head coach Kirk Muller. "That's a big reason we talked to him before he signed and said he's the type of player we're looking for to get some more size in our lineup."

Welsh is a big 24-year-old at 6-3, 210 pounds, with a hard shot.

"You're always looking for big center men," said Canes director of forwards development Cory Stillman. "You have one with Eric, you added another one with Jordan, and now you've got a third one who has an opportunity to make the the team."

Cory Stillman speaks from a new perspective. It's his first day coaching on the ice with the Canes in his new role and he joins some old teammates on the staff.

"Everybody that won the Cup was on the ice today. That's long gone," said Stillman. "That's six years ago, or whatever, but you're back with familiar faces. And you can come back in and be yourself and be honest because that's what they expect you."


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  • mjohann Jun 29, 2012

    Who writes these articles? This is wrong:
    "Last season, the Canes called Welsh up to the NHL roster for one game. He impressed his bosses and gained from the experience."
    What really happened is that Welsh was signed straight out of college after the Frozen Four, and put right on to the roster, He was never called up, as he was never in the minors.

  • Jimmytwotimes Jun 28, 2012

    View quoted thread

    I hear ya, definitely Parenteau at this point. Imagine if JR actually lands Parise? I would definitely be thinking cup year than. Whitney is so consistent with points and knows Staal better than anyone but when will his age catch him and his gas run out? A veteran leader like whitney would be nice, i feel like we lacked that last year, however i have a feeling the STaal brothers are gonna see this as there team and lead it strongly..

  • jazzmanjim Jun 28, 2012

    Welsh really could be good as our 3rd center. I just hope JR is still working on that top line winger for E. Stall, and a Solid D to help Ward out.

  • caniacman Jun 28, 2012

    I would prefer Parenteau over Whitney just because of the age factor. I know JR likes retreads but think at this time Parenteau has more to offer. I think though he may get a big offer somewhere else and he is not worth 4-5 million a year. I have heard Whitney wants a 3 year deal which is a little much for a 40 year old.

  • Jimmytwotimes Jun 28, 2012

    View quoted thread

    I think the canes will pick up Parentaue or whitney to put on the wing with Eric and leave jordan 2nd center. They will play together hear and there and on the power play obviously.

  • caniacman Jun 28, 2012

    Welsh is the only one at this camp that could have an impact this year.
    I hope he does would be nice to see 1 or 2 of our young forward develope like some of the young D has.
    I dont think with the current roster Jordan will be a 2nd line center. He will be 1st line with Eric on the wing. Skinner could be the 2nd line center.

  • Jimmytwotimes Jun 28, 2012

    wouldn't this be nice. Eric puts up 45g as first line center, Jordan puts up 30g as second line center and this kid puts up 20g as third line center. I can see it, might be a good year for the canes.

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