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Training Camp Tryouts: Who Is Available?

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Last week, Carolina Hurricanes GM Jim Rutherford told the media that he was planning to invite a couple of players with NHL experience to tryout with the club.  The general manager was quick to point out that he would only be offering two-way deals, he did not want to close the door on the rookies who were trying to earn a spot on the team. 

There are several experienced players out there who have yet to sign an NHL contract.  Would they consider trying out for a two-way deal?  Let's take a quick look at some possibilities.

Defensemen:

Lukas Krajicek

There were a couple of rumors out there that the Canes had been in contact with this defenseman's agent.  The Czech native has size, (6'3), and is a stay at home type with experience which could come in handy. 

Garnet Exelby

Another physical, stay at home guy who is looking for a home.

Jay McKee

It's hard to believe how far this guy's stock has fallen over the past couple of years, but he's a shot blocker who might provide decent depth, if he's healthy.

 

Forwards:

Scott Walker

While no one is knocking down his door with contract offers, it's still doubtful he would accept a two-way deal at this stage in his career.

Jason Williams

Could provide depth at the center position if the youngsters don't pan out.

Evgeny Artyukhin

Mountain of a man would beef up the fourth line, but he takes bad penalties.

Jere Lehtinen

No longer wanted in Dallas, could this be another Finn to resurrect his career in Carolina?

 

Cory and I chatted about this and he emailed me his thoughts as well.

Jason Williams — always seems to land somewhere right before the season
Owen Nolan — veteran addition that can still score 15-20
Patrick O`Sullivan — NC connections
Wayne Primeau — good faceoff guy, PKer
Kyle Wellwood — likes to eat doughnuts, will love Krispy Kreme
Steve Begin — Agitator who can play center or wing
Adam Mair — good hustle guy, but riddled with injuries
Dean McAmmond — defensive forward, great skater ... solid fourth liner
Shean Donovan — big and fast fourth line winger who can play on PK
Marek Svatos — can score 25-30 in right situation; typical JR reclamation project

 

One might ask, why even bother to invite anyone?  The Canes have plenty of young players available to earn the open spots. 

But every team needs depth, especially one with the health problems that the Canes usually seem to have.  Also, it would be better to have a veteran sitting the bench as a healthy extra, rather than have a rookie sitting there.  If a prospect fails to make the top 12, or top 6 on defense, they should be in Charlotte playing big minutes.

Extra competition never hurts in camp.  There already is a lot at stake, but another player or two in the mix, (with his NHL career on the line), should only enhance the mood.

The training camp roster should be out anytime.  We will see what happens.