We miss Tro and Nino - more than the Committee thought we would. I especially think not re-signing Nino was a mistake, we could have matched that contract that Nashville gave him. We may have had to get creative, but we could have.
KK started the season pretty well but has fallen off the last 7 or so games. They bet pretty big on him and so far it hasn't been good. If he is a bust we have an albatross of a contract because he is getting paid 2nd line money and producing more like a low 3rd or 4th line center.
The slow start for Turbo didn't help and his injury hasn't helped the team at all. It has Rod shaking up the lines which I thought were pretty solid as the season started:
Teuvo Teravainen - Sebastian Aho - Seth Jarvis
Andrei Svechnikov - Jesperi Kotkaniemi - Martin Necas
Paul Stastny - Jordan Staal - Jesper Fast
Jordan Martinook - Derek Stepan - Stefan Noesen (Note I wanted to see Drury play instead of Marty as he needs to gain NHL experience, and our current situation shows this)
The above was the starting O vs. the Kraken and it makes sense. You have Aho centering Turbo and Seth. Turbo sees the ice well, passes well, and has a laser of a shot. Aho is Aho, he can pretty much do it all. Seth at this point is a pure sniper in my opinion. He is young and still learning, doesn't see the ice as well.
Second line is roughly the same principle: KK sees the ice well, but is not the scoring threat that Aho is. He's there to get the puck to Svech and Necas who both have cannons to score. Like Turbo, Necas is also a great passer and sees the ice well....in fact he's played that role better than Turbo this year.
Third line is what it always has been with Staal at center and Fast playing on his wing. In my opinion we didn't replace Nino with anyone we signed so you have Stastny who has good hockey IQ playing there. Stastny isn't as fast as Nino, isn't as physical as Nino, and doesn't really play in front of the net at all trying to get those dirty goals. Also, Stastny's natural position is center which doesn't help here. We lost a scoring threat for the Third Line when we let Nino walk.
The Fourth line is again what we've always rolled with: bring energy, work hard, change the flow of the game with the least amount of shifts. Stepan is fine as the center here and the injury to Kase really changed things as Noesen was put into a long term NHL starting gig for the first time. Marty is Marty, I really thought either Noesen or Drury should have started ahead of him so they could get NHL minutes and see if they could hang. Rod chose Marty and as always Marty has played hard. Rod trusts Marty and obviously doesn't think Drury is ready.
The D hasn't been as good. I don't think Burns is as dynamic as we thought he was and it doesn't look like Slavin and him have good chemistry. I didn't think I would be saying this either, but the loss of de Haan exposed our 3rd line as a little weak. Coghlan hasn't really shown that "two way" skill yet and isn't as sound as Chatfield defensively. Really though the biggest problem is Burns....if he doesn't wake up and start playing like we thought he could this season might not be what the fans were looking forward to.
Finally, Freddie hasn't been last year's Freddie and got hurt (again). Raanta is who we thought he was. Koochie is playing well so far, but our D and forwards have let him down.
tl, dr: The Canes didn't do as well in Free Agency, and trades as they thought. Injuries have hurt. We are discombobulated and I don't think it's going to get better until we get healthy and Burns pulls his head out of his arse.