That's a lot of Canadian centermen in one shot as Rod Brind`Amour drops the puck for Brandon Sutter (left) and Eric Staal. via Jamie Kellner, all rights reserved.
The Carolina Hurricanes were back at the RBC Center this morning. All hands were on deck as the coaches were out on the ice and management staff were in the seats, all glad to have some time at home. The Hurricanes play five of the next 6 in Raleigh, having opened the season with 6 of 8 on the road.
Rod Brind`Amour was watching the drills closely before working with the forwards separately and then the centers for faceoffs. Brind`Amour didn't travel with the team so this would have been his first chance to coach in a full week.
UPDATE: This interview came out late this afternoon and answers some of the Staal speculation that's been percolating - ★★★★★ Staal's Slow Start - David Droschak, HurricanesBeat.com Eric Staal probably wondered what took so long to broach the subject of his slow start to the season...... And yes, Staal is healthy. He said so today when I asked him about his start to 2011-12.
"I’m 100 percent," Staal said. "I feel as strong as I’ve felt in a long time. It’s one of those things that if you get one off a post to go in instead of off the post and out, it may spiral the other way. There is a lot of season left and I know that, and I’m going to continue to bring that work ethic first. That’s the main thing."
- Stewart held out of practice | CanesNow Forward Anthony Stewart was held out of practice with a lower-body injury and his status is day-to-day, coach Paul Maurice said. Stewart has been playing with the injury the past few games.
- Hurricanes Recall Defenseman Justin Faulk - Canes Country ICYMI
- Fair Out, Canes In - Michael Smith, Tracking the Storm The Carolina Hurricanes have returned from their annual, State Fair-induced October road trip. And though practice this morning was upbeat and vocal, the team is clearly not pleased with how the road swing ended.
- From this morning's paper: Canes' road swing ends - Chip Alexander, NewsObserver.com For the Carolina Hurricanes, a six-day, three-game road swing produced a 1-1-1 record. There were good moments and bad on the ice, the worst being a sloppy 5-3 loss Saturday to the Winnipeg Jets.
- Jamie Kellner was also at practice today and is putting together a set of photos. Check back here as the evening progresses to see more (plenty more like the one at the top).
- Anthony Stewart - RBCCenter Spotlight with Mike Maniscalco They discuss getting his first goal with the new team,the impact of being on the 4th line and being a new dad. [Audio 5:20 - recorded prior to the roadtrip last week] ★★★★
- Illegal Curve Hockey Radio Part 1: From Saturday morning, this Winnipeg outlet of TSN radio interviewed Chip Alexander of the N&O. Starting at the 28 minute mark [about 10 minutes] ★★★★
- If you ever wanted to put a voice with the writer, I spent some time talking Hurricanes hockey with a Boston internet radio site: 10-21-11 Carolyn Christians Interview - The Pulse Network [15 minutes]
Around the League
- Sens’ Alfredsson sidelined by injury - The Globe and Mail The Ottawa Senators captain will miss Tuesday game against Carolina with undisclosed ailment
- Blood Brothers: Marc Staal hasn't played since Eric gave him a concussion - The Globe and Mail Rangers rising star Marc Staal still off the ice eight months after on-ice hit from brother Eric. ★★★
- If you thought Paul Maurice had problems with segments of the media and fanbase in Raleigh, you really need to read some of the sports writers in Montreal: Management to blame for Canadiens' problems - Jack Todd, The Montreal Gazette ★★★★
The objective here seems to be to avoid embarrassment, rather than mounting a serious drive to another Stanley Cup. The result has been embarrassing: a championship drought that is sure to reach two decades, an aging team with no impact players in the pipeline to turn things around. As long as the money machine that is the Bell Centre keeps cranking out the cash, there doesn’t seem to be any real urgency to mount a Stanley Cup drive.
Death of a Program: Alabama-Huntsville Gets Plug Pulled | The United States of Hockey The only school south of the Mason-Dixon Line with a Division I hockey program always seemed like a long shot, even when Doug Ross took over the team in the mid-1980s. Against all odds, it lasted through the dissolution of Division II and temporarily the collapse of College Hockey America, UAH’s Division I home for nearly 10 years. ★★★★
- An idea for future Preds pre-seasons - Ryan Porth, Smashville 24/7 With both the Nashville and Carolina franchises feeling remorse for the abandoned hockey fans in Atlanta, why not play a preseason game against one another at Philips Arena every September? ★★★
- A new blog I'll be keeping an eye on: Fried Checkin' - Ice hockey in the South Fried Checkin’ was first conceived after several Thrashers bloggers found themselves without source material, but still with a passion for writing about the coldest sport in the warmest climate. Originally the brainchild of former Bird Watchers Anonymous writer Tim Fabiniak, it was brought to life by editor-in-chief Ally Pelphrey. ★★★
All the goings on with the AHL club in the last week is wrapped up nicely here: Charlotte Checkers Weekly Report (Oct 24) - gocheckers.com. Goaltender Mike Murphy stole the show. ★★★★
Victor Rask is loving life right now. Already sporting a war wound — a freshly stitched lip after taking a high stick to the face last weekend — the 18-year-old Swede and Calgary Hitmen import appears well adjusted to the North American game. "I just really love it," Rask said leading up to today’s Hitmen game against the visiting Kootenay Ice. "I think it’s so much fun to play hockey all the time. I think here it’s a 72-game season and, at home, we played more like 50 games. Here, there are games every day for like three or four days and then you have a day off. And, then, there’s a game again. I like it."
USA Hockey Men's Hockey Poll - Boston College ranked #1 With Brian Dumoulin as their top defensive leader. He contributed a 3rd period assist and a goal to tie the game Saturday that the Eagles went on to win over Northeastern. He's #2 in burgundy and gold in the highlights below (yes, he was on the ice for two goals against as well.)
- Ladd thankful to Carolina | Winnipeg Sun Andrew Ladd will always be thankful for his time with the Carolina Hurricanes. ★★★★
- How White landed next to Lidstrom in Detroit - Nicholas J Cotsonika, Yahoo! Sports In less than a year-and-a-half, Ian White bounced between five NHL teams. He had to move his young family from Ontario to Alberta to North Carolina to California to Michigan ★★★
- FOX Sports Arizona's "Snapshot - Ray Whitney" Seems the Caniacs started it, including quotes from Ray Whitney's Wikipedia bio. ★★★★★