Save Money in this Sunday's paper

Carolina Hurricanes captain Eric Staal is aware fans are unhappy with his performance. He now has a long summer to get himself in position to win them back over.

Hurricanes owner Peter Karmanos’ baffling television appearance Tuesday night might have been intended to placate weary fans, but it only served to infuriate them.

Carlos Rodon came into his junior season as the consensus top pick in the MLB draft, but he has struggled to meet lofty expectations. Rodon showed improvement in Friday’s 2-0 loss to Duke, but time is running short.

Raleigh’s Chesson Hadley won’t defend his title at the Rex Hospital Open this year, having moved on to the PGA Tour, where he’s already a winner. He willingly returned Wednesday to the site of an equally memorable victory.

James Michael McAdoo’s departure puts North Carolina in a similar position to Duke and NC State, which will retool after losing star players.

The truth was, as Mike Krzyzewski admitted, he’d rather be in Indianapolis, where Duke was headed in the NCAA tournament before the shocking opening-game loss to Mercer. The early loss, Duke’s second in three years, raised questions about whether Duke’s program is capable of succeeding while built around one-and-done players like Austin Rivers and Jabari Parker.

When we look back at this season, it isn’t the great teams we’ll remember. It’s the great games: so many good ones in a basketball season that ended too soon.

The news that Carolina Hurricanes general manager Jim Rutherford is expected to step down at the end of the season is as sad as it is unsurprising. Rutherford put in a lot of time with this franchise and steered it to its greatest success. Recent struggles aside, he deserved to go out on a better note.

Marcus Paige blamed himself for the uncharacteristic turnover with 31 seconds that was a major factor in North Carolina’s season-ending 85-83 loss to Iowa State, but the sophomore point guard carried the Tar Heels to this point.

Iowa State will be without star forward Georges Niang on Sunday, an experience North Carolina went through in 2012 when Kendall Marshall was lost in the middle of the NCAA tournament.

Next Page »
Luke has worked for The News & Observer since 2000. He covered the Carolina Hurricanes and the NHL before becoming a sports columnist in August 2008. A native of Evanston, Ill., he graduated from the University of Pennsylvania.
- (919) 829-8947
- E-mail Luke
- @LukeDeCock on Twitter