In one of the strings about the recent Vancouver/Carolina game, someone asked if it is too early to hit the panic button. Since we are fans, and our opinions matter not to the lives of the 'Canes organization, I would say it is indeed an appropriate time -- again, from a fan's perspective -- to hit the panic button.
Specifically, the team that started last season 0-128 had a lot of the same problems we're seeing early this season -- lack of execution on passes, horrific defense, no semblance of an offensive gameplan, and a butt-ugly power play.
So if one was to hit the panic button, what would that entail?
1. Coaching Change -- So Lavi won the cup, then the team quit on him. Mo came in and tightened the screws on Lavi's system and the team made a memorable run for the ECF. Awesome. Season after, with Mo having his own way, the team stunk. JR said it was due to older players at the end of their line, so he went young. And Mo is again stinking up the joint. Mssrs. Francis and Rowe also bear part of the blame, to be sure, but their input revolves around the concepts put forth by Mo. A coaching change would bring a breath of fresh air into the fan base, and there are plenty of inspiring young coaches out there in assistant roles right now. There HAS to be a system out there in someone's head that works better than Mo's.
2. Retool the defense -- Corvo2.0 is failing miserably, and Babchuck3.0 is a little bit better than Babchuck2.0, but still not all the way there to a top-tier defenseman. Pitkanen, although talented on the offensive end, still refuses to take the open shot and his 25 minutes per game are slow, non-hitting, mental lapse-filled affairs that make one cringe. Getting rid of one (or all) of these three would commit us 100% to developing the young defensive talent and/or bringing in some veteran to complement Gleason insofar as mentoring the young McBain's, Borers, etc. of the world.
3. Trade for scorer -- Cole just cannot finish anymore, and Rosie if a 3rd/4th-line guy at best. The young guns are, well, too young right now to be consistent scoring threats night in/night out. Staal gets doubled every time he has the puck, as does Sutter. They need help, at least one veteran scorer on one of those lines. We have defensemen to deal and a couple of prospects (how many freaking good goalies do we have in the system?), I'm sure there is someone out there we could grab.
If anyone has better ideas on how to get the season back on track, let me know.