Is tonight Paul Maurice’s last stand in Carolina?

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You’re going to find out a lot about the Carolina Hurricanes tonight. They’re at home against Buffalo and for all intents and purposes it could be Paul Maurice’s final game behind the bench for the Hurricanes.

The team is mired in a funk so bad that it’s got GM Jim Rutherford talking about shaking things up one way or another soon and with how lifeless the Hurricanes looked against Montreal the other night, signs are pointing toward Maurice as being the source of their problems. They’ve lost six of their last seven and are in last place in the Southeast Division just a year after falling just short of making the playoffs.

For Maurice, News & Observer columnist Luke DeCock says that things are different than the last time he was run out of town in Carolina for losing ways. This time around, fan apathy could be sending the message that things need to change now. As for other fans, they’re already taking the temperature to see who they might want to see take his spot. The choices aren’t overly flattering.

If the Hurricanes do want to rally behind Maurice, putting the boots to Buffalo tonight will help send that message. If they have checked out on the coach, however, seeing the Sabres roll on them in front of their home fans would be the final straw.