Carolina Correcting A Mistake From the Summer

Carolina Hurricanes v New York Islanders
Carolina Hurricanes v New York Islanders / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages

The trade deadline was a smashing success for Don Waddell and the Carolina Hurricanes this month. The team has responded by winning 6 of 7 games since the deadline has passed. Carolina finds themselves just two points behind the division-leading New York Rangers. 13 games remain before the "second season" of the NHL, the playoffs.

Since last season's trade deadline, the Canes have been searching for the missing piece to a Stanley Cup-winning team ever since they swung and missed at last year's deadline. The acquisitions of Shayne Gostisbehere and Jesse Puljujarvi were not exciting and stuck out like a sore thumb after Andrei Svechnikov went down for the season due to injury.

Still, the team was strong and won the Metro Division, while making an admirable run in the playoffs all the way to the Eastern Conference Finals, where they scored just 6 goals in 17 periods of play after being swept in 4 games by the Florida Panthers.

It was clear after the season that this team could use a sniper to elevate their play and take them to the next level. Dare I say obvious, but Waddell decided to go a different route in the off-season by strengthening the defensive unit with Dmitry Orlov, the top defenseman available.

The big acquisition up front at forward was Michael Bunting. Bunting had scored 23 goals each of the prior two seasons on an offensively gifted Toronto team but was hardly a sniper. He brought some grit to the team, which was needed but hardly the big-ticket acquisition this team required.

The team and its new toys got off to an average start for their standards. It was clear that this team had talent but still was missing that scoring punch. Bunting was having a solid season but he is what he is in a player.

At this trade deadline, Waddell corrected a mistake from the summer and went after not only one big scoring threat in Jake Guentzel but another offensively gifted player in Evgeny Kuznetsov.

The excuses are gone and the general manager has delivered, this team has the pieces needed to win the Stanley Cup. Now Rod Brind'Amour just needs to get this group working together and staying hot heading into the playoffs.

Teams that are "going for it" need to make the moves that are necessary or else they can only blame themselves. The stage is set for this squad.