After failing to qualify for the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the third straight year, Carolina Hurricanes general manager Jim Rutherford made several bold moves.

He started by acquiring two-way center Jordan Staal from the Pittsburgh Penguins and followed with the signing of unrestricted free agent left wing Alexander Semin, in an attempt to alter the landscape of the Eastern Conference.

The moves certainly give coach Kirk Muller plenty to ponder with regard to line combinations entering training camp. The arrival of Staal immediately gives the Hurricanes a boost down the middle and Semin provides complementary scoring the team has lacked in recent years.

"It's great to have a right-handed goal-scorer like Semin to balance out our lines," Muller said. "Who plays with who, this guy with that guy, can be sorted out in preseason. For us, having Semin adds another dimension to our lineup, with a right-handed shooter we know can produce. Whether he plays with the Staal brothers or splits time with them, we've got an elite player to play with them."

Here are six questions facing the Hurricanes entering the season:

1. How will coach Kirk Muller use Jordan Staal?