Hello and welcome to a weekly feature on CarolinaHurricanes.com in which I take your Twitter questions about the Carolina Hurricanes or other assorted topics and answer them in mailbag form. Hopefully, the final product is insightful to some degree, and maybe we have some fun along the way.
Let’s get to it.
More reader email!
Do you think the Canes start hot in October or will they have to crawl out of an early season funk? – Dylan S.
October is always a hot-button issue for the Hurricanes for a few reasons, chief of which is that it routinely features a prolonged road trip while the State Fair is in town. Long road trips, no matter the time of year, are always a grind, and when it falls so early in the season it’s tough to gauge how the team will respond. On the other hand, an extended roadie right off the hop gives the Canes a unique opportunity to mesh as a team on and off the ice.
A hot or cold start isn’t necessarily make or break. Last season, the Montreal Canadiens won nine straight games out of the gate and were atop the Eastern Conference with a 19-4-3 record in early December 2015. They finished the season with a 38-38-6 record and 82 points, 13th in the conference. That said, that performance is more the exception than the rule; hot starts tend to serve teams well as the season progresses, and cold starts can bury teams in deep holes early.
This time around, the Hurricanes begin the season with six straight games on the road, a trip that initially takes them through Western Canada before they settle back East in the United States. The hope, obviously, is that the team avoids the early-season slide. The Hurricanes have been there. Take two seasons ago when they posted a 0-6-2 record in October; it’s nearly impossible to erase that blemish, even with the majority of the season left to play. With that knowledge and entering year three under head coach Bill Peters, I think avoiding a dip in play early is very doable. When the Canes finally open at home on Friday, Oct. 28 against the New York Rangers, I would expect them to have a .500 or better record, which would set them up nicely for the months to follow.
This is a great question that I just had to answer.
So, obviously, Jeff Skinner and Elias Lindholm already have emojis of their own faces, Skinner with the signature smile and a “53” helmet, and Lindholm with the hair slicked back and the tongue hanging out of his mouth. Along with Eddie Lack (feat. tacos) and Victor Rask emoji heads, these were featured during last season’s Social Media Night and can now be used on your mobile device via the Canes Emoji Keyboard, available on both Android and iOS.
But this question goes beyond what we have already, so what emojis would they be?
Because of his prowess on the table and his recent participation in Smashfest, Skinner’s emoji will be the ping pong paddle and ball. Tokyo 2020, perhaps?
Staal is the horse because, quite frankly, he is a horse on the ice.
Finally, Lindholm is the tongue because that’s what is sticking out in just about every photo of him. Ever. And, after all, that was the inspiration for his emoji head.
Maybe I’ll use these in a tweet sometime this season. It’ll be our little #Tweetmail inside joke when you see something like this.
Bobbleheads aren’t currently a part of the promotion picture, but there are some other pretty neat things lined up for this season, among them being the Hurricanes hat giveaway for the home opener (Friday, Oct. 28 vs. NYR). Presented by PNC, the hat features the Hurricanes’ primary logo textured and raised on top of a gray fabric finish. Red stitching highlights the brim, and red mesh finishes out the back of the hat. In my opinion, it’s one of the sharpest giveaway hats the team has produced in recent memory and will be the perfect item to add to your collection.
More information on other various promotions will be forthcoming in the next few weeks. Plus, remember to save the date: individual game tickets go on sale for the general public on Thursday, Sept. 15.
Join me next week for more questions and more answers!
If you have a question you’d like answered or you have additional player emoji suggestions, you can find me on Twitter at @MSmithCanes or drop an email here.
is the Web Producer for the Carolina Hurricanes.Email