Carolina Hurricanes: 3 Plans to Reform and Rebuild the Struggling 'Canes

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Carolina Hurricanes: 3 Plans to Reform and Rebuild the Struggling 'Canes
Phillip MacCallum/Getty Images

The Carolina Hurricanes' 2011-12 season has been anything but what they hoped it would be.

Every part of the team has collapsed.

The offense, defense and special teams have all fallen to league's basement.

Star goaltender Cam Ward has suffered through the most horrendous season of his career. Captain and franchise centerpiece Eric Staal has abruptly taken a sharp turn for the worse. And injuries have struck other cornerstones like Jeff Skinner, Joni Pitkanen and Jussi Jokinen at the worst possible times.

In fact, it's not simply that the bad moments have overshadowed the good moments; rather, there simply haven't been all that many good moments.

Carolina's 12-19-6 record is dead last in the Eastern Conference and only inches above dead last in the entire NHL. Of those 37 games to date, the seven that were tied after 60 minutes have translated in merely one win for the Hurricanes.

A late-November coaching change to first-time head coach Kirk Muller has resulted in increased enthusiasm, but not so much increased success, for the 'Canes.

Since Muller's introduction, the Hurricanes have been outscored only 40-35 but have just four wins in 12 games over that time period.

For more on the Hurricanes' struggles this season, read our team assessment from last week.

However, Carolina will have to recover, and the first step to do so is to develop a reformation plan to return the 'Canes to contender status.

We've set out three radically different plans—from the extreme apocalyptic changing-of-the-guard to the low-key rebuilding movement—to project where this train-wrecked squad will be heading next.

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