And the clock ticks louder toward a lockout


Alexander Joe, AFP/Getty Images

More than 200 NHL players are expected to converge on New York City for NHLPA meetings Wednesday and Thursday. The league’s board of governors – this is, the owners of the 30 NHL clubs or their designates – will meet in the same city.

Whether the two sides meet to try to bridge the gap between their proposals is yet to be seen, and hanging in the balance is the start of 2012-13 training camps next week, the exhibition games and probably the start of the season.

• Dave Stubbs talks to Canadiens’ Erik Cole
• CP’s Chris Johnston on the big picture
• TSN’s Bob McKenzie with an encyclopedic must-read
• Full audio of NHLPA’s Monday teleconference with Josh Gorges and Mathieu Darche
• Toronto Star’s Kevin McGran on NHLPA’s challenge of lockout legality


  1. nunacanadien says:

    Why piddle with Subban when there is a lockout looming? Why not just sign Subban?

    If there is a lockout I wonder what the habs would save with Gomez’s annual salary, and Markov’s injured knee?

  2. ont fan says:

    To keep a franchise going according to Sportsnet, it will cost at least $17.5 mil. if they don’t play hockey this year. Scouts, minor teams, etc.

  3. TomNickle says:

    The notion of trading Subban to the Flyers is wild. So was hiring Michel Therrien. As was allowing a physically weak group of defensemen to stay in place. As was the notion of keeping Rene Bourque, Scott Gomez and Tomas Kaberle.

    Marc Bergevin hasn’t done much that would lead me to believe that conventional wisdom or “the safe move” are priorities of his.

    • afik says:

      You are right! I agree with every word said here. I’m really worried.

      • TomNickle says:

        For me the only acceptable move where Subban goes to the Flyers would involve Giroux coming back. And that ain’t happening. But there’s no sense in worrying about it.

        • afik says:

          True, but i was talking about the physically weak group of defensemen in their places, as well as Rene Bourque, Scott Gomez and Tomas Kaberle. Something had to be done!

          • nunacanadien says:

            Finally someone saying it in a way people understand. Otherwise we all end up being like Clint Eastwood as an old man talking to an empty chair. Maybe that is what is wrong with the Habs, old men who are stuck in the past. It’s time to get with the times. Crash the Net hockey as the NHL brands it, requires strong defensemen and a strong will by the goalie, something lacking since we lost Halak and kept Price. And not supporting Price gives us a weak Price.

        • habs-fan-84 says:

          My thoughts exactly.

    • shiram says:

      Bergevin’s done some good, just not much that has an immediate effect on the ice. Therrien I try not to think about too much, I don’t see much good there.
      I’m hoping to see improvement from Bourque, Kaberle as his use and could hopefully be moved at deadline and I’m hoping to see Gomez in Hamilton, but I’m mentally preparing to be disappointed on that one.

      • TomNickle says:

        The only concern I have outside of the obvious “what have you done to improve the club?” is that adding Prust, Armstrong and Bouillon are additions that any average Joe off of the street could have accomplished.

        Subban’s reported contract offer of two years at $5.5 million would be identical to Price’s second contract. I can see the logic there but at the same time there are some mitigating circumstances. Price at the time of the second contract was a backup, not a 25 minute #1 or #2 defenseman whose presence was absolutely critical to the team.

        If Bergevin likes to create a smoke in mirrors kind of logic and continues to refuse addressing dead weight or at least acknowledge glaring weaknesses and make steps to remedy them, we won’t have to worry about him being better than Gainey and Gauthier, because he’ll be far worse.

        • nunacanadien says:

          The sad part is adding Prust, sure the man fights in New York, but what will he do on a team of mighty midgets to back him up? I doubt he would stick his neck out so often.

    • Chrisadiens says:

      Tom, I’m curious who did you want the head coach to be?

      Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

    • commandant says:

      You act as if there were legitimate offers on the table for Bourque, Gomez and Kaberle and that we rejected those offers in order to keep them.

      Go Habs Go!
      Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

      • afik says:

        I don’t know, but isn’t that the reason MB was hired?
        Anyway, i’m saying that just don’t have any high expectations from next season, after all you can’t soar like an eagle when you work with turkeys.

      • TomNickle says:

        One of the greatest marks of a General Manager is an ability to create a market for pieces of an unfit puzzle sitting on his table. Giving Gomez yet another chance is foolish, he should be starting in Hamilton. Failing to rid himself of Kaberle for so little as a 5th round pick or worse is either short sighted or stubborn and a failure to address scoring by moving Bourque to a third line role is a waving of the white flag. The persistent argument against adding a guy like Semin was that he would demand term. He’s on a one year deal in Carolina now after nearly two months of being caught in limbo. And yes this team has the cash for him on a one year deal.

        He’s new on the job and I’m not calling for his dismissal. But he hasn’t shown anything that should create optimism based on the biggest glaring missed step of all. He has done nothing to create a culture change. You think these players will be in a more relaxed atmosphere with Michel Therrien holding the keys? If anything the stoic and tense environment will be multiplied.

        • commandant says:

          We don’t know that Gomez will start the season with the big club. Thats a huge assumption you are making.

          As for Bourque and Kaberle, you are assuming the offers for them on the table now are better than they may be at the trade deadline or later. Selling assets at their lowest possible value was a mark of our last GM and led to many trades where we might have been able to get more if we maximized the timing of the deal (O’Byrne, Dagostini, Sergei K, Andrei K, Cammalleri).

          Lastly, you assume that Semin was willing to sign in Montreal at the same money and for the same term he signed for in Carolina. This may or may not be the case, but considering Quebec vs Carolina taxes, as well as weather, and the having Staal or Skinner as his centre, I’m not 100% convinced he would have.

          Go Habs Go!
          Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

          • TomNickle says:

            No it isn’t Ben. You may want to re-visit some Bergevin press conferences. He will start the year with the Canadiens according to Bergevin.

          • commandant says:

            He will start training camp with the Canadiens. No one has been guaranteed a spot on the team.

            Go Habs Go!
            Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

          • TomNickle says:

            Bergevin – “Scott Gomez is a Montreal Canadien, he will start the season with the Montreal Canadiens”.

            He didn’t close the door on Hamilton, but he didn’t even grab the handle to open it either. Waiting is a mistake. Show the other 22 players that a lack of results is unacceptable and send him down before he gets his third chance.

            And if the handling of Gomez is the only thing you can even argue from that laundry list, I hope you’re seeing that optimism has been prematurely misplaced in Bergevin’s favour.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      To already judge MB as not handling the situations of Bourque, Gomez and Kaberle in this offseason where all GM’s are awaiting to see what the new CBA is, seems a bit hasty to me Tom.

      I will agree in the hiring of Therrien as being questionable, in fact I was adamantly opposed to it upon hearing it. Having said that, given the challenges MB faced upon arrival, and given he has no idea what new CBA will look like, I will not judge him based on the roster he inherited from PG. I have come to accept the Therrien hiring and will give MB the benefit on it, everything he else he has done, I think well of.

      • commandant says:

        If there even is a season, this will not be the year to judge MB’s moves. We are in the midst of a rebuild and it will take some time to clear the decks and start fresh. When it comes to the youth, I’ve liked what MB has done so far, but he needs to keep PK.

        Go Habs Go!
        Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

      • Chrisadiens says:

        I’m with ya here. Not a fan of Therrien but I think he was hired as a stop gap. He signed a 3 yr deal meaning he could be fired as soon as halfway through the ’13-’14 season.

        Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

      • TomNickle says:

        Gomez – Hamilton

        Kaberle – I can name you a dozen teams that need a #4 or #5 puck moving defenseman to ignite their powerplay. Would anyone have been upset if Bergevin got a 5th, 6th or 7th round pick for him if nothing else than for cap relief?

        Bourque – Add a scorer that puts him in an appropriate checking role. Semin and other less expensive options were available.

        Thinking well of front office moves that have yet to yield any dividends is more presumptuous than moves he’s made that have a history of trends behind them from which somebody can actually predict an outcome on.

        • commandant says:

          Why trade Kaberle for a 4th or 5th now, when you might be able to get a lot more than that if he is playing well at the trade deadline?

          Why ship off guys when their value is at its lowest point?

          And trading Kaberle for a late round pick does what exactly? Open up a spot on the defence so we can rush Tinordi or Beaulieu when both need AHL time?

          Go Habs Go!
          Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

          • TomNickle says:

            No actually. Trading Kaberle gives you cap relief and opens a spot to sign a defenseman to bring the element that you’re lacking on defense. An element which you were in agreement was needed three short months ago Ben.

            How many defensemen does this team have under contract for the big club right now by the way?


        • HabinBurlington says:

          Well the beauty of this online forum is we don’t have to agree on everything Tom. I don’t think given all of the office/CBA turmoil that has been occuring, provides any reason to have already made a Gomez decision. What if the new CBA opens a better avenue for dealing with Gomez? Kaberle, as Ben points out is not in a high value spot now and all indications are that he has taken this off season much more seriously. I think his trade value would increase if the season is to be played.

          Bourque is coming off one of his worst seasons and is also now hurt, can’t see how you would have traded him for anything besides a bad contract this summer. As for adding Semin, that is a 7 million dollar contract he got, that is a ton of money for a guy who adds nothing in the dressing room, but agree he has incredible skills.

          We are not going to the Cup final this year, no reason to make hasty decisions this year. IMO.

          • TomNickle says:

            I didn’t say trade Bourque. And to be truthful I prefer the wait and see approach without committing term to defensemen or forwards who will hold back the nhl delivery date of some exciting prospects.

            Having said that the jury is still very much out and I don’t see the reason for optimism outside of the prospect pool.

            The only two moves that Bergevin has made that can be judged today are the hiring of Therrien and the additions of gritty forwards.

            One good and one bad in my opinion. And the bad one is far more heavily weighted than the good one in my view.

            For those reasons, I’m not nearly as optimistic as some and am not willing to accept that Bergevin wouldn’t trade Subban. I don’t think his willingness to pull that trigger can be predicted by anyone here. Though I’m willing to acknowledge that it’s possible based on his willingness to go contrary to public opinion when making his decisions.

  4. HabinBurlington says:

    An interesting read from a political/ideological perspective of the owners greed from Sean Gordon.

  5. habsavvy says:

    I have Fibe tv, but can no longe get TSN 690 AM on my tv.
    anyone with similar problem?
    it worked last week, but no longer on the air.

  6. Chrisadiens says:

    For what I would want in return for PK, Holmgren would hang up the phone.

    Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

    • commandant says:

      Yeah agreed. Subban is too big a piece of this team to move.

      He’s the only guy in the organization who can fill the role of number 1 defenceman in the future.

      Go Habs Go!
      Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Agreed, it is beyond me how many people here love to start the Trade PK talk! It is absurd, every team wants a stud centre, a stud dman and a stud goalie to build around. Why the EFF do people continue to banter this BullSpite about trading PK. It drives me freaking nuts! (Chrisadiens, I realize you are not doing that, but I had to get my comment in somwhere 🙂 )

  7. HabsWinn-ipeg says:

    If the Habs really are talking to Philly (or anyone) about PK and are serious about trading him, this would be an opportunity for MB to reshape his roster. If they are serious I would say go all in -package PK with others and bring back a heavy return. MB could make his mark and accelerate the reshaping of the roster with a trade involving PK. Having said that, I don’t think they would consider trading him.

  8. naweed235 says:

    so there is an article on RDS by Raymond saying that the Habs talked with the Flyers regarding Subban… I am not saying I would, but who should be involved in that deal from the Flyers for you to start listening?
    I’d start with Couturier…

  9. jeffhabfan says:

    Watched the 87 canada cup last night great hockey indeed.

  10. HabinBurlington says:

    Question/Comment to all the NFL fans here. I think Peyton Manning has the opportunity to do something no NFL QB has ever done before. If he indeed can guide the Broncos to a SuperBowl Victory, I think he would become the first ever QB to lead (be the full time starting QB) two different teams to Super Bowl titles.

    I have racked my brain and can’t think of any of QB to win SuperBowls for more than one team (Being a backup doesn’t count).

    • Habilis says:

      This one made me think so I had to look it up and you’re right, no starting QB has ever won with multiple teams.

      Kurt Warner came the closest, winning with the Rams and losing with the Cards.

    • arcosenate says:

      It’s all academic, the Niners are winning the Superbowl!

    • Rod Nozzle says:

      He has a chance but a slim one at that as there is an even bigger chance the Donkeys don’t even win their division. Don’t forget the Chiefs are in the AFC West and will rather be the ones coming out on top. See you Nov 12th, Monday night 8h30 PM.

    • Willy says:

      I think that just goes to show how important a franchise QB is and how when you have one you hold onto him.
      With that said, I absolutely think the Colts made the right decision by taking Andrew Luck and letting Peyton walk(so much uncertainty). This kid is the real deal and when the Colts can finally get a defense to match they will be great again. Man, i am so glad football is back, with no hockey at least there is something to talk about. Go Giants!

    • habsfan0 says:

      Didn’t Ryan Fitzpatrick win a couple of Super Bowls?

      Or,am I just hallucinating in anticipation of hockey training camps getting underway today?

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