Take A Load Off Annie? Fratricide Is Not The Answer, So Take A Load For Free

Even before the Carolina Hurricanes took off on this fretful Canadian swing that has seen them, with one more game above the border to be played tonight in Ottawa, go 0-4 there was much talk about players not carrying their weigh.

Carolina Hurricanes v Edmonton Oilers. Carolina fell 4-3, dropping them to 0-4 on their Western Canada swing.
Carolina Hurricanes v Edmonton Oilers. Carolina fell 4-3, dropping them to 0-4 on their Western Canada swing. / Lawrence Scott/GettyImages

All of this talk about a player or players on the Carolina Hurricanes not pulling their weight, even before the trip out to western Canada, has me thinking about a Canadian band
(maybe perhaps my favorite band of all) that said if you "take a load off Annie, you put the load right on me."

Seth Jarvis
Jaylynn Nash/GettyImages

I highly doubt when Robbie Robertson wrote "The Weight" he had any idea I would one day use it as the crux of an article about the Carolina Hurricanes, much less an article about the Carolina Hurricanes and fretful trip to Canada. While, as a Canadian, I am sure he might naturally have some passing opinion about how bad the Canes have played, just like this Tennessee boy has an opinion about Western North Carolina BBQ.

Still "The Weight" seems apropos given the mentions by everyone from Rod Brind'Amour to Jordan Martinook and Stefan Noesen. It is clear, from everything anyone has seen, that at least one player isn't playing up to their abilities. But who is the ultimate culprit or might not ever be known.
But why?

First, it's unprofessional. No one is going to say outright who isn't hauling water. It's best that people stop asking about it. They just aren't going to point fingers. And if someone did, that seems like a sure fire way to make things worse. Nothing will cause moral and play to plummet like name calling and blaming passing in the press. Trust me, I have seen an organization much older than the Carolina Hurricanes implode before my eyes because of a lack in trust

Secondly, it's been a variety of players who seemingly forget to play hockey. Where last year, there was a veritable revolving door of people stepping up to play hero, this year it seems like even within a game, multiple players have broken down on coverages, fumbled a puck, or given up a costly turnover...sometimes more than once. Costly penalties from Captain Jordan Staal have factored into losses. Andrei Svechnikov had a string where he didn't play a game WITHOUT visiting the time out box at least once.

Conversely, there are players who have decided to play hard enough to cover their foibles. Seth Jarvis comes to mind. He was at one point on track for 86 points in 82 games. While that is unsustainable, it was certainly fun to watch. The comeback tour of Teuvo Teräväinen has slowed, but remains moving down the tracks with speed. Jalen Chatfield and Dmitry Orlov come to mind as the most consistent defensive pairing. Surprising to only a few, Stefan Noesen has played with his cape on more than a few nights. Even Jack Drury has answered the bell twice and paid the fiddler.

It's been hard to watch the Hurricanes struggle, and the start of the season has not been the most enjoyable. Daily fratricide on social media from every corner of the fanbase has not made it any easier. Making matters worse are those armchair experts who fail to read articles, but still want to comment about everything. Yet, I am I can't help but thinking better days are over the next hill and I take comfort in not knowing who is to blame for the lacking of effort with the Hurricanes. My view from the cheap seats tell me it's likely who we least expect and exactly who everyone else thinks it it. For sure we'll hear the armchair experts boast they knew all along if it's ever leaked.