Carolina Hurricanes wingers Brock McGinn and Phil Di Giuseppe are both important players for the franchise going forward.
The NHL draft of 2012 has become a good one for the Carolina Hurricanes. The Canes acquired Jordan Staal at that draft and picked Jaccob Slavin late in the 4th round. But today, it is the team’s two 2nd round selections from that draft we focus on. Both are important to the Hurricanes’ future.
Phil Di Giuseppe (38th overall) and Brock McGinn (47th overall) have each played over 60 NHL games. They have put up almost identical numbers, with Di Giuseppe having 4 more assists than McGinn. Stylistically, both play a physical, grinding game. Neither shies away from throwing a hit or attacking the net.
At the moment, each of them are battling for a permanent spot in the National Hockey League. The past two seasons, both have split time between playing in Raleigh and in Charlotte. Last year, Di Giuseppe spent more time with the Canes than McGinn. The reverse is true this season.
For their similarities, there is some uniqueness in their respective games. Di Giuseppe has better hands than McGinn and a better shot. On the flip side, McGinn has shown himself to be a heck of a passer. He also is more of a pest than his teammate. In both their careers, each has shown glimpses of where they can excel in the NHL.
Brock McGinn has seen the press box a few times in the last couple weeks, but his play was stellar about a month ago. He was one of the NHL’s stars of the week in mid-January. While McGinn slowed his roll, Di Giuseppe has performed exceptional of late. He has 3 assists in his last 3 games. He has been one of Carolina’s best forwards.
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As McGinn and Di Giuseppe work to hammer down their position in the team, general manager Ron Francis and head coach Bill Peters has to see the potential each possess. Neither have superstar within them, but that doesn’t make them unimportant. Their style of play makes them prime candidates to operate in Carolina’s bottom 9 for years to come.
It might take a few years for them to fully mature into their final NHL forms, but it will be worth the wait. Both have the potential to be 40 point a year guys who will provide quality minutes no matter where they are deployed. Their high energy, aggressive style makes them very easy to play with, no matter if its on the 1st or 4th line.
With each appearance, they appear to be gaining confidence. As the end of the season draws closer and closer, expect each of them to get more and more looks with the team. For Di Giuseppe, that probably means some increased power play time. McGinn is likely looking at more shifts on Jordan Staal’s wing.
Going forward, don’t be surprised to see more and more responsibility get levied on McGinn and Di Giuseppe. The Carolina Hurricanes are lucky to have two young, hard working forwards they can build off of.