Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The 12-4 split heading to July 1

My best guess of a Canes roster from among those who are most likely locks as of today:

Whitney, Staal, Cole
Samsonov, Brind 'Amour, Williams
Larose, Cullen, Eaves
Ruutu, Sutter, Walker

Corvo, Gleason

JR has stated he wants to shore up the blueline. The Kaberle/Wallin pairing is probably no better than a third-pairing in this league. It looks to me like adding a top blueliner won't be enough. I believe the Canes need another stopper and a guy with the offensive upside Kaberle showed back in the day.

JR has stated he wants to get bigger and more physical on the fourth line. If Brandon Sutter is all grow'd up and ready to knock some folks around, a Ruutu, Sutter, Walker fourth line could wreak some havoc. So my concern is not whether the Canes can put together a physical fourth line. I'm worried about a one-pairing deep blueline and the smallishness of many of the other forwards. I heard all last weekend about the resurgence of the small guy in the new NHL. Good news is, the Canes are on the bleeding edge of Hobbit-hockey with Whitney, Samsonov and Larose (if he returns) on the roster. And if Zach Boychuk makes the squad, we'll have the makings of a Tolkein trilogy this fall.

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