After taking Sunday off entirely, the Carolina Hurricanes endured a lengthy and demanding practice at the RBC Center today. Afterwards, the team announced Patrick O`Sullivan will be rejoining the line-up for Wednesday's game vs the Ottawa Senators. Jiri Tlusty, who has played nine games since coming off his conditioning stint in Charlotte, will sit the game out. If this is due to injury, they aren't saying. It seems to be more about adjusting the roster to improve results.
At the practice, the forward lines were tweaked a bit. Jussi Jokinen joined Brandon Sutter opposite Patrick Dwyer (and, if he stays there for the Senators game, perhaps providing some back up in the face off circle where Sutter struggles while Jokinen leads the team with 52% FO wins). O`Sullivan, whose game is comparable to that of Sergei Samsonov's, will apparently start on the fourth line with Tom Kostopoulos and Jon Matsumoto (say that ten times fast). At this point, no recalls have been made from the minor league affiliate Charlotte Checkers, who are also off till Wednesday.
Is this just "taking it one step at a time", or is this all the movement we'll see this week/month? I'm curious. As we watch and wait for Wednesday's retooled efforts, here are a few evening links and excerpts to keep you in the know.
After the jump, local updates, several major news stories from around the League, a couple events with the Canes around town, some Sunday punches, difficulties great and small, and a look behind the mysterious workings of the NHL's Wheel of Justice.
Local stories with reaction to the last two games and looking at what's next
Canes Use Break to Regroup - Tracking the Storm Blog The Hurricanes’ current three-day break between games, their first since before opening night at the RBC Center, couldn’t have come at a better time.
Canes Now - O'Sullivan eager to exit press box, get on ice "I don't have any experience going through a situation like that, so it's been really frustrating," O`Sullivan said. "At the same time, I've worked as hard as I can and I feel good on the ice. I can definitely do all the skating drills there are in the world.
Sound Bytes - The Team 990 - Montreal's Sports Radio Jim Rutherford talking with Tony Marinaro this morning. Yes, they talk about Skinner, but also spend some time on the past week of ups and downs.
Eric Staal was on NHL Live on NHL Network post-practice today, and after the ASG kidding around (If you're a captain, would you choose Marc or Jordan?), they asked him about the Canes last two outings vs the Flyers and Canadiens and all those goals against. Worth hearing from the captain.
Major news around the League
New York Islanders fire Head Coach Scott Gordon after the team loses ten straight.
Here's the announcement and some behind the scenes reporting from Chris Botta at his blog Islanders Point Blank.
Greg Wyshynski's take on the move: Islanders coach Scott Gordon fired for losing with terrible team - Puck Daddy
Perhaps it was appropriate that Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance" played before the conference call announcing his firing began.
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Colin Campbell, NHL VP (and meter-outer of suspensions and fines) is under scrutiny
TSN's story: NHL's Campbell under fire for emails sent to Walkom NHL vice president and league disciplinarian Colin Campbell is under fire for comments he made in a string of emails to then director of officiating Stephen Walkom. Posted on hockey website www.mc79hockey.com, and written by Tyler Dellow, the emails raise questions about Campbell's impartiality.
Puck Daddy's less restrained views on the story headlined with Have Savard emails exposed NHL's Colin Campbell as corrupt?
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Tragedy in the family for the Ottawa Senators
Senators road trip takes an unscheduled turn - Ottawa Senators Following tonight's game in Philadelphia, the Senators will return to Ottawa instead of carrying on to Raleigh, N.C. That flight is being delayed until Wednesday, so the Senators can attend the Celebration of Life service that morning at Scotiabank Place for Daron Richardson, the 14-year-old daughter of assistant coach Luke Richardson, who died tragically on the weekend.
For the original story on the death of the daughter of the team's assistant coach, here's the Globe and Mail
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More challenges for the Sutters in Calgary
As if the on-ice struggles of the Calgary Flames weren't bad enough, forward Brett Sutter, who is Brandon's cousin, and son of Darryl Sutter, the Flames GM, was arrested in Phoenix late last week and charged with assault for throwing a punch at a cab driver outside a bar. Here's the team's response as reported by KuklasKorner : Brett Sutter Demoted & A Statement. The Calgary Flames announced today that forward Brett Sutter has been reassigned to the Abbotsford Heat of the American Hockey League.
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Steve Bernier, Florida Panthers, surgery to repair broken orbital bone after he was speared in the face with butt of Brent Burns' stick Friday night. Brent Burns was suspended 2 games for the incident.
And what of Andrei Markov, Montreal Canadiens, who's troubled knee was entangled with that of Eric Staal during the game Saturday night, forcing him to leave the ice with assistance? They're not saying.
**UPDATE: Habs prepare for life without Markov Latest update on Markov's status (scattered reports are that he's done for the season), and comments from Cane-for-a-week Alexandre Picard who will play D for the Habs tomorrow with rookie P.K. Subban.
This site at CBSSports.com gives a league-wide listing of who's out (and/or recovering). If you're feeling discouraged about the Hurricanes, take a look at this list and remember the conversations we were having in these parts a year ago.
Hurricanes out and about in Raleigh
Canes Players to Assist Raleigh Rescue Mission - Justin Peters and Brandon Sutter will help serve dinner to the homeless at the Raleigh Rescue Mission on Monday, November 15th. I'll be looking for the video to see how those Movember 'staches are doing. Surely Peters will take his mask off for this.
**6:40pm UPDATE: from the Rescue Mission tonight: Canes Now - Sutter, Peters volunteer to help, serve Great story. No Photos. (I'll bet the local TV news will have the story at 11.)
Using technology to shorten the wait for food at the game: Hurricanes Bring Bypass Lane to RBC Center - The Carolina Hurricanes today announced the addition of Bypass Lane to all home games, offering fans a convenient way to order food from their seats.
Checking in with Charlotte and the younger prospects
10 thoughts from Shaya | Checkers Chatter From the radio voice of the Checkers, Jason Shaya, some insight from the guy who's seen every game this season. Coming from someone who is new to the team this year, the comments seem particularly fresh.
Micflikier a fan of November games at TWCA | Checkers Chatter Jacob Micflikier, who does not have an NHL contract, has had great success in the AHL, which makes for an interesting story.
Hockey's Future - NHL Organizational Rankings Nov 12, 2010 Showing up at number 14, the Carolina Hurricanes. While I had thought they'd rank higher, our best prospects are still young. It is still early to claim with certainty where they'll be a year from now. The team is sure going the right direction (they were more like 29th a few years ago) and the future remains bright.
UMD powers its way to best home start in 15 years, featuring Freshman sensation (and Canes prospect) Justin Faulk, who has the most goals among defenseman in the WCHA, all three on the power play. In fact, as of today, the USCHO.com Division I Men's Poll has Minnesota-Duluth at Number 1 in the country. This story offers some insight to Faulk's contributions.
The very hyped "Subway" Super Series between various Canadian junior "all-star" teams and a similarly chosen team of Russian juniors moves on to Game 4 tonight, at 7pm. I bring this to your attention because the recently very hot Canes prospect, Justin Shugg will be on the ice for team OHL. You can stream video of the game here.
You have voted, haven't you? Good. Vote again.
NHL.com had this ASG-themed write-up based on Staal's comments on NHL Live (that I linked at the top): Staal hoping for All-Star hometown greeting Eric Staal remembers being at other All-Star Games and hearing the crowd react to the hometown players. He hopes he gets his chance.
Late reaction to the new ASG format posted yesterday from the usually surly, ever cynical Larry Brooks of the NY Post. He's decided he likes it: NHL applauded for All-Star game switch. Hockey is telling you that its game doesn't count at all. There's nothing at all not to like about that.
Care for some Sunday scrums?
Do you prefer quality:
Video: Fight of the year candidate from Erskine, Boulton - Puck Daddy Wow. Best moment of the clip: All the Capitals players watching the replay of the fight on the center ice scoreboard as the crowd reacts with every punch.
Video: Oilers, Rangers brawl during MSG matinee - Puck Daddy The scorer's list of penalties assessed shows 124 minutes at 11:18 in the third. Guess who started it? (Hint he plays for the Rangers and his name rhymes with Dawn Pravery). Oilers lose their fourth in a row, 8-2 final. Oh, and Marian Gaborik had a hat trick.
Finally, this is a video all hockey fans will love as ESPN's very popular Erin Andrews talks about starting her career covering the Lightning in Tampa Bay and why hockey and its players are just different. (Unless you don't need to be validated by ESPN in order to believe your sport is of national significance and import.)