A week has passed and the Hurricanes are still looking for a top six scorer for Eric Staal. Plan A ended very quickly when Zach Parise said no to Peter Karmanos money. For the next four days Canes fans debated the prospect of Rick Nash coming to Raleigh. As I wrote last Wednesday, I don’t see how the Canes have enough to get a guy like Nash. Plus it kinda bothers me that Nash would have to be “talked into” coming to Raleigh. I hate casting stones but he’s played in Columbus, Ohio his whole career (sorry K P). He could do a lot worse than going to the rink in January and not have to clean the ice off his Escalade. So Jim Rutherford goes to plan C. The name in the news the last few days is enigmatic winger Alex Semin.
My first reaction to Semin was H#&& and no! I have never liked Semin. Some of it has to do with playing for the Capitals. I don’t like the Canes to ever lose, but it always leaves me in a sour mood watching a loss to the Capitals. They have more “glass banging” fans per capita than any team in the NHL. That drives me nuts. And of course they have been better than the Hurricanes since 2008 when they won the Southeast on the last day of the season. I have always viewed Semin as a soft player. A guy who floats in games and cherry picks on a regular basis. I figured the Caps would never win with a guy like this. In fact I was worried this past playoffs when it looked like Washington had finally found a coach who had them playing a brand of hockey that could win in the playoffs and a goaltender they could win with. Getting rid of Semin would make them even better. The fact they traded for the Greg Louganis of the NHL, Mike Rabeiro , and Dale Hunter said no thanks to coaching them should mean they will be back at their underachieving best. If for no other reason, the video below would explain my feelings for a guy like Semin.
Just embarrassing. But as I took off my Canes glasses, I began to see a guy who is the most talented free agent left on the market. This is a guy that has killed the Canes over the years. The last two years he has scored 49 goals. Both are considered down for a guy with his talent. His first two years in the league Semin was a -25 player. Since then he is +92. Even his critics credited him for his play in this years playoffs. The guy is a very skilled player. Check out the 2.38 mark.
Wow! But is this a guy you can win with? Jim Rutherford has said that the Canes might be interested in Semin for a short term deal. The key to whether Semin could work in Raleigh might be Kirk Muller. Is this the kind of player that Coach Kirk and the staff could get the most out of? Would coming to Raleigh and having the chance to play against his former team be the prescription that Semin needs to return to the 35-40 goal scorer he was just three years ago? Would he be on a mission to shut Marc Crawford and Pierre McGuire up? I’m not saying that this is the guy to put the Hurricanes over the top. I am saying that Caniacs should not be so quick to discard the idea of Semin playing in Raleigh. Maybe he is that slap fighting flouter that can bring crowds to there feet with his skill, or maybe he’s a guy who needs a fresh start.