Better? Worse? About the same?

Mark Streit, who scored 13 goals (seeven on the power play) and added 49 assists in 2007-’08 is gone.

So is Michael Ryder: 14 goals.

That’s 27 goals gone – and if that stat sounds familiar, it’s because Sheldon Souray left after a season in which he scored 26.

Newly arrived Alex Tanguay had 18 goals and 40 assists in Calgary. Georges Laraque scored four for Pittsburgh.

Net loss: Five goals. 16 if you add Bryan Smolinski’s eight and three by Mikhail Grabovski.

The numbers mean … nothing.

Canadiens have gained a first-line left wing and one of the most intimidating enforcers in the league. 

And they’re still in the hunt for Mats Sundin, the addition of whom would make all this musing utterly moot.

With Sundin, Canadiens would be a MUCH better team.

Without him …

With all due respect to Saku Koivu and Tomas Plekanec, the team
lacks a first-line centre. Unless Kyle Chipchura steps up – and, maybe,
even if he does – the Canadiens are not strong down the middle.

And that’s not a good place to be weak.

Without Sundin, the depth chart at centre is Koivu, Plekanec, Maxim Lapierre and Chipchura.

Christopher Higgins has played centre. He’d be thrilled to play a new position during his contract season.

Sergei Kostitsyn? Hockey sense, great passer. Gritty, but small.

Bob Gainey has to make a move.


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