In case you missed today’s live stream of Owner Peter Karmanos’ press conference at the RBC Center, here are some highlights. Video is also available below:
On the European Premiere:
- In addition to the two regular-season games against the Minnesota Wild in Helsinki, Karmanos said that the team will attempt to play one preseason game either in Finland or in Moscow, Russia.
- “Some of the teams last year were complaining about having a slow start because they started in Europe. I figured that we couldn’t do much worse than we did this year.”
On the possibility of moving the Hurricanes’ American Hockey League affiliate to Charlotte, NC:
- “They’re going to have a press conference tomorrow, and hopefully we will have an affiliate team that’s a lot closer to us and in the Carolinas to help solidify the fan base that we have. We’ll see what their announcement is tomorrow, but it would be nice to have an affiliate that close.”
- “It’s kind of a case where one plus one equals more than two. When we first came here, this was not, quote unquote, hockey country. I think we have built a tremendous fan base in North Carolina since then. It’s what we’ve set out to do. Adding an American Hockey League affiliate in the Carolinas would even further solidify that fan base to the very tip of the state in the south to where we are. It would be a really good thing and make hockey even more important of a sport than it already is.”
On the Hurricanes’ bid for an upcoming All-Star Game:
- “We are really in the running for the All-Star Game for the next few years. The NHL will hopefully make that decision by the Olympic break, and I would be disappointed if we’re not one of the teams in the next few years.”
On winning games this season vs. getting a high pick in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft:
- “We always want them to win no matter what. Then when they do win, like Jim [Rutherford], we’re both upset because we want to get the first pick overall too. We’re bipolar when it comes to winning and losing these days. We’re a professional team, and when the guys are out there they can’t play to lose. They always play to win.
”It’s been a disappointing season to say the least, but we think for the rest of the way that we’re going to be a very exciting team to watch.”
On the team’s payroll moving forward:
- “We are not a team with a low budget. We went out and spent some money because we thought we had a chance to make it. We proved to ourselves and to the management that the only thing you can really control are your costs, so why don’t we do the best job we can with reasonable costs. We’re going to do that, and we think we can put a very competitive team on the ice."