Emotional Rescue - Caps 5, Canes 1

The Carolina Hurricanes showed no emotion last night while being humiliated on their home ice by the Washington Capitals. They showed no emotion afterwards in the dressingroom. There was no emotion from head coach Peter Laviolette in the post-game press conference. Everything was "matter-of-fact" and low key.

Perhaps a little emotion is needed? Perhaps someone should be a little angry? Fans are certainly upset about the performance, if no one from the organization is.

This was supposed to be a "big" game, a "statement" game for the Hurricanes. But the only ones doing the talking were the Capitals. They made a very clear statement that the Southeast Division lead belonged to them, and to them alone.

I'm not going to give a detailed recap of the game. All you need to know is that Alexander Semin and Alexander Ovechkin did as they pleased all night. I remember one play where Brandon Sutter gave Semin a jolt. That might have been the only time he was knocked to the ice all night.

The Canes are certainly snake-bitten. They were missing open nets, breaking sticks on shots, and whiffing on chances while the Caps looked like skilled, professional sharpshooters. Carolina had the benefit of multiple powerplay opportunities, but could only capitalize once.

During a crucial 5-on-3 chance late in the first period, a blind pass was made from the point which went back behind the blueline, and the Caps didn't do a thing to cause it. The pass was totally an unforced error. Is that a lack of focus or lack of discipline?

When the Canes finally did set up a good play, they either whiffed on or missed open net opportunities. This epitomized how the game went.

Now the Hurricanes have a 0-2 record against the Caps, they have a losing home record of 3-4, they have lost 3 of their last 4 games played, and they have allowed 10 goals in their last two games, both blow-out home losses.

Something has got to give.

Could Peter Laviolette set a record for most NHL wins for an American born coach, and also be fired, in the very same month? One thing for certain, fans will not tolerate this type of play. They will speak with their wallets and the Canes can not afford to lose any more fans.

Some readers have asked me questions in the comments from the previous article. I will try to answer them here.

Parker- what is it going to take to get this team to play seriously? Please give me some positive news.

Perhaps a new coach. I don't have the answer to question number one.

For some positive news, it's still early in the season and the tide can turn. Momentum can change. The Hurricanes can get on a roll and win some games in a row. Hockey is a fickle, unpredictable game.

Swenk- Why do we have a roster spot tied up on Brookbank?

That is an excellent question that I have been asking myself. Why keep a guy on the bench who only plays a minute per game? What's the point? He's supposed to be an enforcer or someone who can provide a spark, but what can he do from the bench? They send a hard-working player who was contributing, (Helminen), back to Albany and keep a player who rarely sets foot on the ice. Especially tonight in a blow-out, he still only played 1:51.

Jonathan- Why no fight from Brookbank or Gleason to get the team sparked?

Another question several fans have been asking. The team was getting badly out-played and was flat, especially later in the second and third periods, and no one seemed to care enough to pick up their hitting or send any kind of message. No emotion, no intensity, and no leadership.

_____

The Canes travel to Atlanta for their next game Friday night. They have a better road record than home, so perhaps that is a good thing. But after watching the last two debacles at home, many fans are asking themselves, does this team still have a pulse? Does anyone in the organization care?

Let's have more discussion. What needs to be done to fix the Canes? What do you think?

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