Out With the Old, In With the ....Older?!?!

12/3/08 in NHL   |   hskrdave   |   10719 respect

Today the inevitable happened.  Peter Laviolette was fired by the Hurricanes.  Not overly shocking, the way the Hurricanes have been playing this year.  And Jim Rutherford has a habit of replacing coaches in November, as he replaced Paul Maurice a couple of years ago with Peter Laviolette.

Laviolette did win a Stanley Cup in 2006 with the Canes, but has failed to make the playoffs the last two years after winning.  This year the team is 12-11-2, 8th in the Eastern Conference, and have again been hampered by some injuries, but not as bad as last year when they missed the playoffs by 1 point.  They actually blew making the playoffs last year.  When Laviolette came in, he brought in an Offensive Minded gameplan, which was a much needed change from Maurice's dump and chase, get two goals and try not to let the other team score 3.  Laviolette was able to get the quick skaters, theoretically sharper passers/snipers in order to score goals, and if the Hurricanes got up by 2, watch out because your goaltender was going to start getting peppered in order to increase the lead.

My thoughts were that Laviolette would be let go after the season, because honestly, imo, there wasn't a viable coach that could come in with the same offensive mindset and get the team going.  So which Out of Work Coach did Rutherfod Find?

Welcome Back to Raleigh, Paul Maurice.

I don't see this ending well.  His gameplan was (is?) dump and chase, score, and don't let the other team score.  With the Canes Defense this year, it's not going to work.  And Cam Ward (now on the IR) and Michael Leighton usually play with more holes than Swiss Cheese.  The Defense should be speedy, and Niclas Wallin is having his best season since he has been here, but once again, it is an offensive minded defense, not what Maurice uses.  And the Canes Power Play has been one of the worst all season, and when you can't set it up regularly, you're not going to be able to set it up with dump and chase either.

The biggest challenge will be to get Brind'Amour(C), Staal(A) and Whitney (A) to produce more.  They have 46 points in 25 games.  And they are the top 3 points leaders for the Canes.  Canes only have 172 points on the season, which is less than 7 a games, which is about 2 goals a game.  Not very offensive from a coach who wanted to score goals.

I will give Maurice his chance.  They assigned Ron Francis as the Associate Coach, so there must be a game plan there.  If all goes to plan, I will be at the game on Saturday night, to see the "New" Canes.   Im humble opinion, it will be same old, same older....
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