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.
Ah, yes. We've reached the lull of the offseason. Playoffs are long over. There were two drafts. New uniforms debuted. The schedule was released. Free agency opened. It was fun! Now, it's way too hot and humid, and we long for the chill of the frozen sheet. We wait patiently for the return of hockey, still just over two months away. "Is it October yet?" we wistfully wonder. It's not, though. Not yet.
So when can we expect hockey activities to resume? I don't have any specific dates in front of me, but I wouldn't be surprised to see members of the Hurricanes trickle back into town and hop back on the ice around mid- to late-August. Training camp opens in mid-September, so you'll likely see some sort of unofficial on-ice happenings taking place in the weeks prior.
The Hurricanes' coaching staff underwent a few changes this offseason. Bill Peters, Steve Smith and Rod Brind'Amour are remaining in their current capacities. And video coach Chris Huffine got some help with the addition of L.J. Scarpace. Where the majority of the change occurred was in the goaltending department.
David Marcoux's contract was not renewed, and the team hired Mike Bales as its new goaltending coach. Bales' track record is impressive. He comes from Pittsburgh, where he served as the Pens' goaltending coach for the last four seasons and won back-to-back Stanley Cups.
Curtis Joseph won't be returning this season, so the Canes hired Paul Schonfelder as its minor-league goalie consultant. Schonfelder has spent the last three seasons as the goalie coach for the OHL's Ottawa 67s. He's also worked internationally with Hockey Canada.
The main attraction at The Eye this fall will be the new Hurricanes jerseys, revealed in late June. Adidas is the new on-ice manufacturer of the authentic sweaters, while Fanatics will handle replicas and Outerwear will produce youth wear. If you haven't seen the new threads, 1) where have you been?! and 2) we've got you covered right here. Like what you can see? You can be notified when these new jerseys arrive in The Eye by filling out this form. And, a special edition 20th Anniversary patch will be included for those who fill out the form and purchase their new Canes sweater.
You'll also see more Adidas-branded merchandise land in The Eye in time for the start of the season. New player tees featuring Scott Darling and Justin Williams are already in stock!
Honestly, I just want to hear "CAAAAAANES WIIIIIN!" belted out as much as possible. Sound good?
Join me next week for more questions and more answers!
If you have a question you'd like answered or you'd like to discuss this week's episode of "Whose Line is it Anyway?" - an instant classic, I'd say - you can find me on Twitter at @MSmithCanes or drop an email here.