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03 April 2009

Our Turn

Tomorrow could be the most important game out of the last five. It could quite possibly determine seeding for our Penguins. We will truly see who has the hotter team, Pittsburgh or Carolina. I see Pittsburgh coming out on top, but I am willing to bet that everyone in Carolina thinks otherwise. I have been watching a lot of coverage the past couple games and all the commentators talk about is the Hurricanes this and the Hurricanes that. I am sick of it. It is time to show who is the team to beat.

These two teams seem to be mirror images of each other right now. The Canes won the cup in the same situation in 2006. They had their time and excelled, it is time for ours. Just to give you a little background to this team, they started off as the New England Whalers in 1972. They changed over to Hartford in 1979 (My Birthyear!) because of the transition to the NHL from the WHA. This old team never won the Stanley Cup, it took a transition to the Carolinas in 1997 in order to accomplish this. Personally, I liked them as the Whalers, I wish they would never have left. The reasons for leaving, in my opinion, was pretty weak...too small of a hockey market and old training facility. I feel if they just would have held on a bit more, it could have all worked out. That is all water under the bridge now.

The Canes are riding a ten game home winning streak and a 10-1-2 record in the month of March. Typically, this would have been scary to other teams, but not the Penguins. We finished March at 11-1-2, one win better than Carolina. We also just came off of a 8 game home stand where we were 6-1-1. Our last victory was a convincing 6-1 over the #3 ranked team in the east New Jersey Devils.

The Hurricanes goaltender Cam Ward has been playing lights out as of recently while being awarded the NHL's player of the month. He comprised a record of 10-1-2, 1.98 goals-against average, and .938 save percentage. I look at him and I see Marc-Andre Fleury. Fleury finished March with a record of 9-1-2, 2.25 goals-against average, and .932 save percentage. You almost wonder how far behind in player of the month voting he truly was.

The bottom line is that the Canes are on every bit of a hot streak that the Pens are. They are in 4th place by one point while playing one more game than the Pens. The Pens win and they gould quite possibly pass up Carolina for good. This could also be a first round playoff matchup as well. This game could mean quite a bit and I truly believe we will be victorious.

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