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Storm Advisory 8/29/19: 30 Thoughts

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Cam Ward calls it a career, and we are here to recognize.

Have Fun
Jamie Kellner

In case you missed it, the greatest goaltender in Hurricanes franchise history decided to call it a career yesterday so today’s Storm Advisory is dedicated to him.

In the news and on the airwaves

  • Yesterday’s News Today: Cam Ward Signs One-Day Contract to Retire a Cane; A Tribute to Cam Ward
  • Additional news coverage of Ward’s one-day contract and subsequent retirement is coming in from all over the continent. [N&O] [NSJ] [NHL.com] [NBCChicago] [Red Deer Advocate] [Fork Saskatoon Online]
  • From the “Best of Adam and Joe” podcast, the first 12 minutes are devoted to Ward retirement discussion, then Wardo called in at the 21-minute mark. (Among other things) we learned he’s not quite as good a golfer as Justin Williams but apparently better than Rod Brind’Amour, also he’s building a new house in the area and tried to sell his old one to Ryan Dzingel. [WRALSportsFan]
  • Then a visit to NHL Network to talk about his decision and what’s next:
  • And from the Canes, a compilation of highlights and memories:
  • Also from MSmith, we learn the Wards are getting together with a former captain over the Labor Day weekend, and that Cam’s one-day salary was able to be fitted under the cap, among many other interesting tidbits. [Canes.com]

The accolades keep pouring in

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  • A career history as represented in buckets.
  • “When I was a kid.” SMH
  • An awesome story from Team Canada Olympic gold medalist Shannon Szabados.
  • And who doesn’t want to relive one of the greatest goalie beatdowns in recent memory?
  • As for what’s next...
  • Finally, if you missed this the first time around, don’t miss it this time.

A couple of random career notes

  • Since the league began collecting statistics over 100 years ago, there have been 799 goaltenders with at least one NHL game on record. Cam Ward has more wins than 776 of them. His 334 wins, good for 23rd all-time, puts him ahead of such legends as Nikolai Khabibulin, Gump Worsley, Olie Kolzig, Sean Burke, and Mike Richter, just to name a few.
  • Expect Alex Nedeljkovic to challenge this some day, but Cam Ward is one of just eleven goalies who has recorded an NHL goal (Dec. 26, 2011 vs. New Jersey Devils).
  • Cam Ward is one of just five rookie goaltenders in the NHL’s expansion era to win a Stanley Cup, along with Jordan Binnington (who achieved his feat this past June), Matt Murray (2016, 2017), Patrick Roy (1986) and Ken Dryden (1971).
  • Also, for those who may be wondering about the significance and implications of a one-day NHL contract, it’s mostly a symbolic gesture to demonstrate good will between the organization and the player. The contract itself is a professional tryout offer, so there are no contractual salary or cap ramifications, but it does become the last recorded transaction in the player’s name at NHL central registry, which accomplishes an official final link between the player and his preferred team.

30 Thoughts

It’s well known here that my emotions toward Cam Ward border on reverence. My family started following the Hurricanes in 2005-06, the same season he made his NHL debut. We thought it was pretty cool that our son shared a name with the backup goalie; little did we know how that role would change and in doing so change the history of a franchise. As Rod Brind’Amour once said, “I got to raise the Cup because of that kid,” and we all were there to witness. There were many highs: the Cup run, the miracle March to the 2009 playoffs, the All-Star Game in 2011. On the ice we were treated to highlight saves and stretch runs; off the ice we got to know a man often lauded by his teammates for not only his skill and athleticism but also his humor, leadership, love for family and service to community. Ward was with us through the best of times but also the worst, when injuries, overuse, and physical demands took a personal toll and brought yesterday’s decision to bear sooner than it should have been. I’m thrilled he’s retiring as a Hurricane, delighted he will remain a part of this community, and hopeful he’ll continue to play a role in the future of this franchise. Thanks for everything, Wardo. You were a joy to watch on the ice and are a great ambassador for the sport off the ice. I give a nod to you every morning when my Cam heads out to begin his day. “Love you, buddy. Have fun.”