Eighteen games into the 2015-16 Carolina Hurricanes hockey season, things are not rosy at 1400 Edwards Mill Road. Despite wins in October, halfway through November the overall record is no better than it was last season. Some players are showing promise, others appear to have regressed. Some fans are beginning to call coaching decisions into question. Despite a reported uptick in season ticket sales, attendance at home games is at the bottom of league rankings, and many attending games report a miserable in-game experience. The owner has a for-sale sign in the yard, and with no local buyers on the horizon, speculation continues that relocation is inevitable. None of these issues are likely to get better in the near term, and quite frankly they may get worse. Fans seem to be faced with two options: jump ship, or batten down the hatches and ride out the storm.
This is about weathering the storm. Well really, it's more about an excuse to play with the Ranker tool embedded below. Regardless, it's about getting through the next several months as a Canes fan with a bit of sanity and hairline intact. If this works it may become a semi-regular feature, if it's an abject failure it will mysteriously disappear off the radar like a ship in the Bermuda Triangle.
Derek Roessler of Section 328 recently opined that it is time for Ron Francis to "Rock the Boat" and begin dismantling the current core of player personnel (click here to read it). Which brings me to an interesting conversation with my husband over breakfast the other morning. I posed a question: Say, hypothetically, there was an expansion draft, and the Canes were allowed to retain only three players, and the rest would go into some type of redraft pool. Which three would you hold on to? In the spirit of full disclosure, I chose three because I personally could only come up with two players I was passionate about keeping, making the third player a topic of heated discussion.
What say you, readers? If you're Ron Francis, and you need to rock the boat, who do you keep and who do you toss overboard?
Below are all the players on the Hurricanes stat sheet this season (prospects in the system are excluded from this exercise for now). All you have to do is up-vote the players you want to keep, and down-vote those you'd be willing to send on their way along with some nice parting gifts. You can use the criteria I suggested (keep three and say so long to the rest) or you can make up your own. Provided I've set up the Ranker tool correctly, we should see players move up and down the scale, and perhaps patterns or trends will emerge in the data, or failing that, one more thing we can agree on or argue about.
If you run into any problems with the Ranker tool, let me know in the comments. Thanks for playing!