As was announced on this week’s Cheaters Never Win podcast, Chantel McCabe will be back as the pre-game host and sideline reporter for Fox Sports Carolinas’ coverage of Hurricanes hockey for the 2014-15 season. Fresh off of her experience with the NHL Network during the playoffs, Chantel shared with us a little about her time in New York and her excitement for the upcoming Canes season.
The dog days of summer are upon us, and the heat is baking the Carolina landscape. So in honor, we have 99.9 The Fan’s very own “Latino Heat” Joe Ovies join us to talk Canes puck, a little local sports radio history, and the state of media coverage here in Raleigh. We bracket that with a little free agent analysis, a beer review, and a big announcement from Chantel McCabe. We are 3 months away from hitting the ice again, and the offseason is where champions are made. So, power through this podcast, feel the burn, and we promise to try harder next time.
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For want of a nail the shoe was lost. For want of a shoe the horse was lost.
For want of a horse the rider was lost. For want of a rider the message was lost.
For want of a message the battle was lost. For want of a battle the kingdom was lost.
And all for the want of a horseshoe nail.
-Somebody, a long time ago
A lot has been made about the Canes activity (or lack thereof) during the 2014 NHL offseason. Thought to be a team that could potentially shake things up with a draft day trade, the Canes quietly drafted a “safe” pick at 7, then made the rest of their picks the following day without so much as a move up or down in the draft order. Then, a few days later, free agency exploded like the frozen orange juice market at the end of “Trading Places”, and while teams spent huge amounts of money on seemingly any player who had a pulse during the 2013-14 season, the Canes signed 4th-liner Brad Malone from the Avs in that “matter of fact” way that your grandmother had when you finally convinced her that she can buy something off of Amazon without a Nigerian prince taking her retirement fund.
The new GM has been hired, the new coach is behind the bench, and the 2014 NHL Draft is now complete. One week of free agency is now behind us. All of those changes beg the question: Is the 2014-2015 Carolina Hurricanes a playoff team as now constructed?
This staff has a difference of opinion, so we jumped in Google docs and discussed our differences in real time. On the cup half full side will be our resident optimist, Mike Flanagan. On the side of evil will be native Buffalonian and new to the site curmudgeon, Dr. Driftwood. TO THE CLOUD!
Ron Francis is his own man. That being said, he certainly displayed some Rutherfordian tendencies today by bring back Tim Gleason on a 1-year, $1.2M deal that by the grace of all things holy doesn’t appear to have a no-trade clause attached to it.
As Luke DeCock mentioned on Twitter, by bringing back Gleason, the Hurricanes are implying coaching was bigger issue than talent or culture. While I agree with that statement, this signing at best reeks of desperation, and at worst stinks of poor decision making.
Like Stooges and celebrity deaths, Ron Francis signings come in threes. On the first day of Free Agent Insanity, the Hurricanes re-signed Jiri Tlusty, and added Brad Malone and Drew MacIntyre (spelling truly counts here, as there’s also Drew McIntyre).
While hockey fans near and far (myself included) were amazed at some of the big names on the move and how teams like Dallas are now much better on paper, Ron Francis stuck to his earlier statements and focused on depth. It’s not a sexy move, but for this team, this year, it’s the right one.
With the dog days of summer upon us and the thrill of the World Cup in full effect, I thought that this would be a perfect time to talk about what everybody is thinking about anyways, NHL free agency.
It’s true that the NHL’s hot stove doesn’t get quite as much hubbub as the NFL or MLB but I assure you, this year’s free agency is rather interesting.
Certainly all 30 teams will be trolling the wire to enhance their chances for the 2014-15 campaign, some will have success and some will have buyer’s remorse. It’s a little different on the player’s side of things. Free agency is something that is earned; it’s a rite of passage for tenured players where they get to look into the crystal ball and go to the best place suitable for themselves. This “decision” is often botched and what were once promising careers simply float down the commode only to be remembered as the disappointment that they have become.
Here is a list of our “Dirty Half-Dozen” free agents and some advice that may help them along the way. After all, making the right decision is a process of eliminating the poor decisions, am I right? Continue reading