It’s something no fan ever wants to happen to their favorite team. A point where the team is playing so poorly and has such a bad record that winning games just does not make sense anymore. And unfortunately for Carolina Hurricanes fans that thought process has to start being analyzed.
Even with the Hurricanes win last night the team sits at 14th place in the Eastern Conference and 10 points behind the eighth-seeded New York Rangers. The Winnipeg Jets, who have won three in a row and the New Jersey Devils, who made the Cinderella run to the Stanley Cup Finals last season, also stand in the way between the Canes and eighth place.
Right now the only thing wins would do for the Hurricanes is move them out of the ceiling of their conference and possibly finish in 10th place instead of 14th. If anything, moving up in the standings will only hurt Carolina’s chances of getting a high draft pick in the entry draft in June. There are a few holes in the lineup that could be filled with a top prospect in the draft.
If the Canes receive a pick in the top five they have a chance at Nathan MacKinnon, Seth Jones, Jonathan Druin, Sean Monahan or Darnell Nurse. Carolina has a young, skilled top six on offense, but could use more depth on defense. Jones and Nurse may be able to make an NHL team
straight out of training camp and become top-pairing players in the future. Imagining Justin Faulk and Seth Jones as a pairing for years should make any Hurricanes fan excited.
The 2013 draft is also one of the deepest in recent history so having a high pick in the second and third rounds should also be appealing for Carolina
Free Agency 2013
The Hurricanes have about $7 million in cap space for this summer and have players such as Chad LaRose, Joe Corvo and Riley Nash that could be re-signed. If the team chooses to sign them and others the Canes will be left with very little to add to their lineup in free agency.
That is why adding through the draft is so important for Carolina at the end of this season. They will be able to add a roster player without having to enter a bidding war with other teams for that player.
Obviously tanking is not allowed in the NHL and the league has tried stopping that by creating the draft lottery instead of the last-placed team receiving the first overall pick. Also the players on the team do not want to lose. No athlete ever does and there are players like Nash, Drayson Bowman and Bobby Sanguinetti who are playing for spots in the NHL next year, but at this point the wins will only hurt the team’s chances at landing a star player in the draft.