GM Bergevin says Habs are a team that still needs to mature (with video and audio)

(Photo by John Kenney/The Gazette)

Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin expressed satisfaction with the team’s season, but said there’s still a lot of work to do during a press conference Monday morning in Brossard.

The Canadiens finished the season with 100 points and made a deep playoff run, making it to the Eastern Conference final.

“Overall it’s a very good season. A 100-point season with the playoffs to get to the conference final is excellent,” Bergevin said.

The Canadiens aren’t a mature team yet, but they’re a good young team, Bergevin added.

“I feel we’re not a mature team,” he said. “We’re a good young team. Our core … they’re young veterans I call them. We’re moving forward. There are teams that I look around the league they’re more mature. And for them you could almost say every year they’re a guaranteed playoff team, but we’re not there.

“Next year we go back to the same starting line with everybody else. Our first goal will be to make the playoffs. And after that … once you’re in, anything is possible.”

At the start of next season there will be a whole bunch of teams fighting to make the playoffs, Bergevin added.

“That’s the way we are sitting here today and hopefully years down the road we’ll become a more mature team, but we’re not there yet,” he said. “But we have a lot of good things going for us.”

Bergevin confirmed that forward Dale Weise suffered a concussion during Game 5 in the Eastern Conference final series against the New York Rangers.

Weise returned to the ice after going to the ‘quiet room’ and being cleared to return by doctors.

After the contact, the doctors evaluated the situation and the protocol was followed to the letter, said Bergevin, adding that a player can often feel concussion symptoms a day or a few days later.

“It happened the next day,” Bergevin said.

“The NHL has a protocol that needs to be followed after a player is hit,” he said.

“If the player said he’s OK and the test says he’s OK, then he’s OK. Until we change that, we personally, the team, the organization is very strict on how we operate with any type of injury. Players they have a list of things they need to do before they return to play and he passed with flying colours.”

The Canadiens were told Weise had a concussion the next day, Bergevin said.

“The league is working on making it as safe as possible. But that’s a discussion that is ongoing with the league. We all worry about our players. But again, we can only go by what we have to deal with.”

Asked what he believes the Canadiens need to address to take the next step, Bergevin simply said: “The next few weeks we’re going to sit down internally with our staff. It’s a little early to project what we’re going to try to do … but again, overall I thought our young players learned a lot. What they learned during the last 17 playoff games is something that you cannot buy.”

That learning experience included three elimination games in the playoffs against the Boston Bruins in Games 6 and 7 and the Rangers in Game 5 that the Habs won.

“What they learned in the last month and a half it’s huge.” Bergevin said.

When Canadiens goaltender Carey Price was injured in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference final, the Habs opted to start rookie Dustin Tokarski for the rest of the series instead of regular backup Peter Budaj.

The way Tokarski played in the regular season with the Canadiens and also during the playoffs “you see that it’s a good puzzle to have–depth at all positions,” Bergevin said. “And it takes nothing away from Peter Budaj, who in in my opinion is one of the best back-ups in the National Hockey League.”

Asked whether defensive prospects Jarred Tinordi, Nathan Beaulieu and Greg Pateryn have to play next year in the NHL, Bergevin said: “There’s no ‘have to.’ They probably will.

“It’s going to be them that’s going to make the decision for us,” the GM added. “Do I want them to, sooner than later? Yes. … Hopefully they are, but that’s going to be up to them. But they’re really going in the right direction.”

Bergevin has several key decisions looming with four unrestricted free agents and seven players who will become unrestricted free agents on July 1.

Bergevin was tight-lipped, saying he doesn’t publicly discuss contracts when asked about P.K. Subban and Andrei Markov, who will become an R.F.A. and U.F.A., respectively.

“So as far P.K., Markov, (Lars) Eller – you can name them all – it’s something that I’m going to be working on throughout the next weeks, the summer,” Bergevin said. “I don’t know how long it will take. Everything has its own time frame.”

You can listen to the first part of Bergevin’s press conference here:

The second part is here:

Bergevin tight-lipped about offseason plays, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

Bergevin remains voice of calm for Habs, by The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs

Deep playoff run makes exit more painful for Habs’ Prust, by Dave Stubbs

The Montreal disease infects Habs fans, by Jack Todd for The Gazette

GM Bergevin has decisions to make on free agents, by Pat Hickey

Vanek says lack of chemistry hurt him with Habs, by Pat Hickey

Pacioretty says Habs aren’t always treated fairly, by Pat Hickey

Coaching Canadiens comes with a price, by Gazette sports editor Stu Cowan

Price praises backup Budaj, montrealgazette.com

Photos: Youppi! in a Rangers jersey, montrealgazette.com

 

642 Comments

  1. dexterdog says:

    VANEK is German for MOOSENUT..

  2. dexterdog says:

    VANEK is German for MOOSENUT.

  3. CHicoHab says:

    So Carcillo will now see Stanley Cup Final action. He’ll play in game 4. How fitting. Just in time to shake hands after losing 4 straight.

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      What are the rules of maximum players under contract? Could a team put all their 3-7th rounders in AUAA for further development without having them count against pro contracts? Would that team maintain rights to the player?

      ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

    • Savardian Spin-o-rama says:

      Good stuff Commandant. Always look forward to your mock drafts. This Scherbak kid looks great. Seems to have a nose for the net. Just what we need…another Gallagher type but with more size and maybe more of a scoring touch.

      ~~ You’ve been spun ~~

    • third generation haber says:

      After drafting Sherbak in the first, what would u say to offering our 2015 first rounder for a high second rounder in 2014 so that we could draft Alexis Vanier in the second round this year?

      http://lastwordonsports.com/2014/05/11/2014-nhl-draft-profile-38-alexis-vanier/

      My rationale is that we will perform well next year, making the 2015 pick a lowish first rounder. Vanier is the top rated Quebecer, a beast of an offensive d-man (6-5/215). The future seems to be now for our team, so this may accelerate things by 1 year.

      Would love to see big Vanier in a Habs uniform. Some scouts believe he is a first rounder. Despite his poor skating, his offensive game is said to be better than Morin’s (2013 10th overall) at this point last year.

      j.p. murray

  4. shiram says:

    What’s the point in having rules if they never follow them…

    Darren DregerVerified account ‏@DarrenDreger

    NHL reduces Carcillo suspension from 10 games to 6.

  5. Alex_425 says:

    Another game for Milos!

  6. Chris says:

    Yikes…Sam Bennett didn’t manage a single pull-up at the combine? Now we’ll see how much stock teams put in combine physical tests (I wouldn’t put too much, personally) versus the phenomenal season he put together as a 17 year old this year in the OHL.

    The combine stuff never used to get widely reported, but the NHL has been following the NFL’s lead in making all this crap available for public consumption. Some fitness all-stars were busts, while some fitness duds were stars. I’ve never quite understood the fans who get too bent out of shape in either direction because it is largely irrelevant to how the player’s career progresses.

  7. TheCanadianDagger says:

    Somehow another cave-dweller from Boston was able to string a few sentences together: The Eulogy of the Montreal Canadiens. And it reeks of sour grapes.
    https://ca.sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nhl-puck-daddy/eulogy–remembering-the-2013-14-montreal-canadiens-161420822.html

    • HabinBurlington says:

      In fairness, that site has been doing these eulogies for every team that gets eliminated, all are done with a great sense of sarcasm.

      • TheCanadianDagger says:

        Oh, this is the first one I read, it just popped up on my Yahoo news.

        That said, this could be used word for word as a serious column in a Boston newspaper and no one would know the difference, the way they are.

    • Luke says:

      “Here is Jerard Fagerberg of Boston.com, fondly recalling the 2013-14 Montreal Canadiens. Again, this was not written by us. Also: This is a roast and you will be offended by it, so don’t take it so seriously.)”

    • Cal says:

      I expected something a little funnier, but this guy can’t get 2011 out of his butt.

  8. habs-hampton says:

    If I was an RFA in Florida, I would find I would find it very difficult to have an honest negotiation with the team. If I’m making $2M a year and want $3M, then I’m asking the team to layoff 10 people who need jobs, just to give me a raise. What a joke of a team. Good luck attracting UFA’s this summer. I can’t imagine Gerard Gallant wants to be a Head Coach THAT bad! And Gary won’t let us have a 2nd team in Quebec or Ontario???

    • Cal says:

      Now, I know you skipped over the laffs, but the Sens aren’t so hot, either.

    • New says:

      I think Florida is indicating that sales aren’t working out. They shook up management and the coaches because sales said it was the product. Now they will change some of the people not selling the product, or so heavily discounting the product that the sale is negative in effect. More to do with owners looking at roughly 20000 seats at an average $487 (Montreal- Boston TD garden) or $647 (Hawks-Kings United Center) and thinking why not me. Tickets are often given away at $7 hoping to make money on parking. For the fourth season they have played to decreasing capacity (76%). No shows are starting to outnumber shows.

      It is like the Expos. Magic when it starts but once it begins to go downhill it gains momentum.

      Gallant and futures for Huberdeau. Write it and it will happen.

  9. Alex_425 says:

    Can we buy our Genie a hockey stick and get her to tryout at training camp next season?

  10. habs-hampton says:

    I’m not a doctor, or a medical professional, but isn’t it obvious that the NHL “Protocol” regarding evaluation in the quiet room useless?? I’m not sure what testing is done, but shouldn’t the protocol include evaluating the minutes between the incident and the time he enters the quiet room. If you blacked out or are skating like Bambi to the bench or a teammate needs to hold you up, then I can’t believe anyone could allow that player to pass a concussion test. There is too much pressure on players and teams to keep the lineup intact for the rest of the game. Like Shane said here a few days ago, a concussed player is in no position to judge his own condition.

    So what if 15 years from now, Dale Weisse sues the NHL and Montreal Canadiens organization. That image of PK holding Weisse up is all I need to se if I’m on the jury.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      You’re not a doctor but you’ve just bested the Canadiens’ medical staff.

      —–
      Moving. Forward.

    • southaltahab says:

      Totally agree. Couldn’t believe he came back after Subban had to hold him up.

    • Alex_425 says:

      “habs-hampton for Montreal Canadiens Head Team Physician, 2014″

      Let’s get those posters up, people!

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Very well said, hampton.

      The “protocol” is just window-dressing.

      And your vision of 15 years from now is spot-on, if not about Weise, then about some unfortunate player(s).

      Hockey at least has the potential (although not likely with current NHL culture) to save itself. Football and rugby actually seem doomed to me: hitting people with your head — and having your head hit by people — is a virtually inextricable component of the game.

      That fact, combined with the fact that you cannot stop a brain from bouncing around inside a skull, means that brain injury is utterly unavoidable. Eventually health and safety legislation will draw a terminal conclusion about this.

      At least hockey, if it policed itself better and enforced its own rules, can do much to protect brains. The sport has the potential to minimise the amount of contact involving heads.

  11. boing007 says:

    Panthers are in a mess. Would love to see them hire Gallant, then move the team to Quebec City.

    Richard R

    • BJ says:

      Just spoke about an hour ago to a friend who coaches in the south (can’t mention his name for obvious reasons) and he told me that there are some extreme cost cutting measures taking place there. He also mentioned that Dale Tallon’s job is not set in stone and he could be asked to move on….

  12. habs001 says:

    Briere i dont believe is physically capable of playing 17 minutes a game over the regular season…

  13. Mr_MacDougall says:

    Posted last night…

    There’s been a lot of talk about the changes the Habs need to make to become elite, teams need “Game Breakers” that can routinely be one of the games top 3 stars.. Price and Subban come to mind.. True elite teams have 5 of those…

    I like the mix the Habs have, had Vanek had turned out for the Habs the way Gaborik has for the Kings, and Price hadn’t been injured, well, the Habs would be in the Finals. Vanek had 2 impact games for the Habs in the playoffs, one against Boston and one against Tampa.

    With the age of Price and Subban, along with our top secondary players… Patch, DD, Gallagher, Eller, Emelin, Galchenyuk, Weiss.. The Habs have a multi year window opening up.

    Even vets like Pleks, Gorges, Prust, Moen! should have multiple seasons at their current level left.

    The only players that are winding down their career are Markov, Gionta, Weaver, and Briere… Is there any reason to rush things because this talent is aging? I don’t think so..

    The up and coming young core of Galchenyuk, Tinordi, Beaulieu, Gallagjer, Eller, Patch, Price and Subban should all have their best years ahead of them during the next 7-8 seasons. Include Plek, Emelin, Gorges, Bourque, for the next 3-5… There is a significant window opening up for this core group and tons of cap space available to surround them.

    There are only 2 UFA players I’d kick the tires on… Gaborik and Giordano. I highly doubt Calgary would let Giordano walk and Gaborik will surely be negotiating with LA… I’d also have a conversation with Mike Cammalleri, proven playoff goal scorer, and was clutch.. Have to assume our top line will be Chucky and Plek, Cammalleri might not be a bad fit short term.

    I’d have no problem seeing the Habs go into next season with the exact lineup without Vanek. Sign Markov, Gionta, Weiss, Weaver.. Let Boullion, Murray walk…

    Imagine had we just signed Vanel for 8 years? That’s frightening. There is an awesome group of high impact UFA players coming up in the Summer of 2015-17…. The best plan of approach seems to be staying pat, make late season trades for upcoming UFA and use that season as an “audition” and then decide whether they’re worth committing to. Worked for the hawks with Hossa… Worked for us with Vanek, no,way we offer him anything more than 2 years at big money… And he’d laugh at that.

    I cringe at the thought of the Habs giving long term deals to any player that is not proven elite and they rarely become available (if ever). For instance, if Toews or Kane became available next season, you’d have to offer them 10 mill for 7 years… But they’ll absolutely be signed. Is Stastny a big enough upgrade over Plekanec to risk shaking things up? I don’t think so.

    Anyway.. I expect to see much of the same next season with a potential deadline deal to boost us into the playoffs… A more experienced Chucky, Gallagher, Subban, Price, Parch.. Even with the current group, the team should improve… Then add a boost at the deadline, hopefully it works out better than Tomas Vanek

    ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

    • habs001 says:

      With Vanek gone and the continuation of a struggling PP the same lineup as last year will again struggle 5/5 and be in the bottom third in goal, scoring…

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        So you suggest making moves when there aren’t any smart moves to make?

        The team needs two Game Breaking Forwards to play in a top line with Galchenyuk.. Gaborik or Cammalleri would be the only guys I’d consider. I don’t think for a minute that Paul Stastny is “the missing piece.

        A cautious approach is what I hope to see. Change for the sake of change is not a successful recipe. I like what we have, it’s a big risk removing key pieces from that.

        I agree 100% the Habs do not have the top line talent for a great PP.. Patch and DD suck on the PP due to both being one dimensional.. patch as a shooter and DD a playmaker.

        I envision a PP with Galchenyuk.. And two players not currently on our roster. My choices,would be Joe Tornton via trade and Marian Gaborik.

        That is very unlikely.. Rumours are that Carolina is losing boatloads of cash and wants to blow it up.. So I’d consider Eric Staal.

        ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

      • southaltahab says:

        With our current players I don’t know why we can’t have an effective pp. Confidence and coaching?

        • Mr_MacDougall says:

          Who would you put on the PP? Boston showed the world that when DD has the puck play man on man on the other 4 because he can’t shoot.. Or he can’t score with his awful shot.. Pressure Patch with two guys when he gets the puck and he’ll damn near clear the puck for you.. Rangers followed this same plan… Take away PK, rush Patch, give DD as much time as he wants… Patch is a shooter only, awful,passer under pressure.

          Maybe a Plekanec, Galchenyuk. Patch could work… At least Plek and Galchenyuk are dual threats.

          ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

    • CalgaryHab says:

      Cammalleri back? That would would make sense with my jersey curse. I bought Richer’s jersy – traded within the year, comes back a few years after. Bought a Cammi jersey – traded within the year, if Cammi signs again – jersey curse comes full circle. This is why I don’t buy a Price or Subban – I don’t tempt the jersey gods. Should’ve bought a Gomez a year or 2 before the buy-out, he could have come back as team motivational speaker.

    • Chelios24 says:

      How do you like the current contracts we’ve given Emelin and Gorges?

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        I think there are only room for one of them with the LHD we have in the pipeline.. I don’t like any D playing their “wrong side” unless it’s on the PP.

        ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  14. boing007 says:

    Tokarski, Gorges, Moen, Gallagher, DD, White, Prust, Leblanc, Dietz, Bouillon, Dumont, Blunden, Markov?, Emelin? to Edmonton for Perron, Gadzic and Yakupov. Feel free to sweeten the pot.

    Richard R

  15. SmartDog says:

    Bouchard to play Sharapova in semi-final and French Open.
    Yum! I mean… wow!

    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

  16. JUST ME says:

    I stopped looking at women`s tennis a few years ago being tired to tell my girlfiend that i was not looking at porn… but this Eugenie girl is something else. What she is doing right now is simply amazing . It`s like when you are climbing up the stairs 5 at a time. Now where she is , it`s like that every game but she keeps on fighting with a strenght that is typical of champions.
    I want to marry that girl ! Gotta go ! Yes honey i`m here….

  17. third generation haber says:

    Let’s take a break from dissecting the team and discuss something more positive (and possibly more important). The draft is coming on June 27th!!!

    Commandant, if u are out there, what are your thoughts on Alexis Vanier??? I’d really like to draft this guy!

    Alexis Vanier (6-5, 225). He’s a big offensive d-man playing for Baie-comeau. I’ve read that he’s better offensively than Samuel Morin was at this point last year (Philly 10th overall). He’s also physical and can drop the gloves.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jZL4DaMH1Bs

    From what I’ve seen, he’s the highest rated Quebecer in the draft, believed to be a potential first rounder, but more probable second rounder. Currently, he’s gaining some momentum with scouts. He was on a tear this year till a shoulder injury derailed his production. His skating is said to be his biggest obstacle. I’m imagining Tinordi and Vanier (twin towers) creating a force-field in-front of Price.

    Commandant, if u are out there, what are your thoughts on Vanier?

    j.p. murray

    • Thurston says:

      Don’t worry. We’ll have another lockout in a few years in as a way to help prop up bottom-feeding teams like the Panthers. I’m glad to see the last lockout worked so well, though.

  18. FormalWare says:

    ‘Morning, folks.

    Not too impressed with Patches’ comments RE: fan/media “unfairness” in Hickey’s article (“Pacioretty says Habs aren’t always treated fairly”, link in story, above); he comes off as whiny and somehow unable to grasp that in a rabid hockey market like Montreal, that’s how it’s always going to be.

    Perhaps he’d prefer to play in Dallas, where hockey is #4 (if that). (He ain’t going anywhere–I do realize that!)


    WWSD (What Would SubbieDoo?)

    • boing007 says:

      Send DD and Patches to Dallas for Tyler Seguin.

      Richard R

    • Luke says:

      You see, what Patches is referring to is how any comment made in the media can be turned around by the fans/media and instead of them pondering it for any length of time, the fans/media instead accuse them of being Whiny and unable to grasp the passion and try to trade them in some ludicris fit of jilted highschool first break-up rage.

      Basically, he says we all make too many mountains out very few molehills.

  19. HabinBurlington says:

    A pretty candid and unbiased (well okay the writer and Pierre are buddies) read on why or why not Pierre may be the next GM in Pittsburgh.

    http://triblive.com/sports/joestarkey/6215492-74/pierre-bowman-penguins#axzz33a2YLl2S

  20. shiram says:

    Jimmy Murphy ‏@MurphysLaw74

    @TonyMarinaro reports on @TSN690RadioMtl that Michel Therrien has been signed to 2-year contract extension by the Canadiens.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Oh oh.

      Boone, get some more Hamsters. Quick!

      —–
      Moving. Forward.

    • BJ says:

      Summer present for Timo. Bergevin said he was looking for stability. If he does survive the full mandate he will be past the average four year or less stay thats been recurring for Habs coaches since Pat Burns (I think he was there 4 years) before that Bowman (8 years or so).

  21. shiram says:

    On Tokarski/Budaj.

    I don’t see the issue, Tokarski is not likely to garner much in return if we trade him, same can be said of Budaj.
    Goalies are not much of a hot commodity.

    So keep Tokarski as the starter in Hamilton, the team needs to be better, and Tokarski can be of great help there.
    It also fits in with his contract.

    Budaj is still a good backup, and he can play some important games, as was the case all season when he was put up against the Bruins and won.

    Seeing as Budaj’s contract expires when Tokarski’s deal turns into a one way deal, I think it’s a decision for next year.
    Unless someone comes in with an incredible offer for either of those, I’d keep em, we need good goaltending.

    • Paz says:

      You think it’s fair to keep Tokarski in Hamilton?

      You post it as though he has not earned an NHL spot at least as a back up somewhere.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      You can’t send Tokarski to Hamilton. He will be picked up on waivers.

      —–
      Moving. Forward.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Really? I wasn’t aware that he could no longer be sent down without having to clear waivers. Given how few games he has played I assumed he still could be.

      • shiram says:

        What if he starts there?

        • Mr_MacDougall says:

          You are absolutely right. Start him in Hamilton and he can be called up for the odd Budaj or Price “injury”

          He is an asset on the rise and would benefit from starting 45-55 games in the minors and 4-8 games in the NHL more that he would by playing 15-18 in the NHL alone.

          There’s not a single team that would go into next year expecting to contend ToKarski as their started. He doesn’t have huge trade value, but I’d think he has as much value as any highly touted goaltending prospect. He is definitely valuable enough to be a “pot sweetener” in a trade.

          His value will continue to increase, so why not keep him?

          ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

          • shiram says:

            Yup, that’s what I think too.
            He’ll be much better served playing tons of games as the #1 in Hamilton, then playing 10-15 odd games in the big Club.

            The wildcard is Stephane Waite, it would do good to have Tokarski under his tutelage.

          • Mr_MacDougall says:

            Does he work with both NHL and AHL tenders?

            ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

        • DipsyDoodler says:

          Same thing.

          If he starts in Hamilton he is being reassigned.

          I think the only two options are keep him in Montreal or trade him.

          —–
          Moving. Forward.

    • New says:

      I think Tokarski will start next season in the NHL. He has earned that and someone will give him that. He will go for a pick this year, or go for nothing just before the season starts.

  22. Cal says:

    Genie Bouchard into the semis!

  23. frontenac1 says:

    Hola Amigos! Marc mentioned that the role of an Enforcer is still required in today”s game. Love Parros but he is done imo. Our young tough guys aren’t ready yet. One guy I would make a play for is Jay Rosehill. 28 yrs old, can play on the 4th line, hits hard, and a good fighter. He had 10 fights last season in 32 games, lost only one against Carkner.. He beat up Gadzic and Thornton. He has one year left on his contract at $750k with the Flyers. Swing a deal Marc! Saludos!

  24. Paz says:

    Bouchard wins!!

    Advances to French Open semi finals!

    She was down 5-4 in the final set and came back again!

  25. SmartDog says:

    Re. Vanek. I see no question about his ethic and drive because I think there’s a more appropriate explanation.

    In my opinion there’s no great mystery here. Therrien put him with Plekanec – our shut down center. This means he was playing against the top offensive players on the other team, with a center who was thinking D first. Add that to Vanek’s being bounced around this year from team to team, and you get good reason to think he just lost his mojo and was having trouble getting in back. Pretty much what he said on Saturday… Vanek to me is a driven guy. But personality-wise he’s like a receiver in football and more of an artist than the typical player. He does special things in a unique way. To pull that off takes being on the same page. I think he got frustrated with Plek’s always looking to move back and protect. That’s my read… and I’m stickin to it!

    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • JF says:

      Interesting take. So do you think we should try to keep him?

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      This is very persuasive and credible, SD.

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      Gaborik is with Kopitar who is the Kings shut down centre…

      ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Gaborik while not defensive in nature, can skate like the wind, much easier for him to transition. Vanek seems to more labour in open ice and gets comfortable once in the offensive zone.

        You do make a good point though MacDougall.

    • New says:

      Imagine what it must be like to be Pleks then. You have an assignment and one of your wingers isn’t really into that stuff. More of a position me and I’ll score type of guy. So as Pleks now you have to think for and cover for him. The NHL is full of guys who can score if they’re on the top line, first PP, every game but flounder elsewhere. They sign big UFA contracts, get traded when it doesn’t work out, go to a second line somewhere else, then a third, and everyone wonders what is wrong. What is wrong is the other two guys who did all the work aren’t there.

  26. jimmy shaker says:

    Rogers announced their main men behind the mic next season.

    Hughson, Cole, Romanuk and Randorph…..no word on who would be doing colour!

    Shaker out!

  27. Butterface says:

    Here is my armchair GM 2 cents:

    Defence:

    I did not see Pateryn play, so I can’t comment.

    Beaulieu and Tinordi should be played in the NHL the whole year so they are ready to go come playoffs (which we may or may not make depending on free agency and what we could wave to make room for the future.)

    Markov: Sign or wave. Only sign for 2 years… at less than 5 mil per season.
    Murray: Wave.
    Bouillon: Wave.
    Weaver: Sign at 1-1.2 mil per season…. 1 year, team option for 2.
    Subban: Sign or match.

    Obviously keep Emelin and Gorges. I like both. Gorges as captain should we lose Gionta.

    Forwards:

    Gionta: Sign or wave. Sign for less money. He must come cheap or walk away.
    White: Sign for 1 -1.2 million per season. 1-3 years.
    Weise: Sign for 1.3 -1.5 million per season. 2-4 years.
    Eller: Sign for 3.5-4.25 per season for 3-5 years.
    Vanek: Try to get Stastny.
    Parros: Wave
    Moen: See if there is a market for him… 2 years left at 1.85 mil per season.
    Briere: See if there is a market for him… 1 year at 4 mil.

    All other forwards stand pat…..for now.

    Acquire if able:

    1 Enforcer. John Scott is available. Matt Kassian.
    1 Superstar or goal scorer or playmaker. Stastny, Cammalleri (no yelling at me), Alferdsson, Gaborik, Vanek, Hemsky
    1 decent player. Jokinen either Jussi or Ollie.
    1 Weise type…. I like Steve Downie….now playing decent hockey. Penner ?

    Goal: We are in an envious position.

    ***********************
    If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it…..
    ***********************

    • HabinBurlington says:

      MB essentially said that it is up to Pateryn, Beaulieu and Tinordi to force the coaches hand in training camp next season.

      I wouldn’t be surprised it Frankie B gets offered a two way contract, and perhaps Weaver is offered a decent 1 way 1 year contract. I don’t really know obviously.

      I heard Colby Armstrong on the radio the other day, he said Montreal offered him a 2 way contract, he turned it down and went to Sweden. He did admit he regretted the decision not accepting Montreal’s offer.

      Some of these veteran Dmen Montreal has to make decisions on, are in a very similar situation to what Colby was in.

      I think MB will make the right choices. Of course all is predicated on just what the contract demands end up being for PK and Markov.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      I only read the last few lines, which caught my eye.

      You said we should sign John Scott.

      —–
      Moving. Forward.

      • Butterface says:

        We could put him on the bench for games that need the presence of a WMD…. Lucic going to run Emelin or Weise with Scott on the bench ? Anyone going to run our goalie if they have to meet Big John in game or next game ?

        Sure he won’t keep up with the speed or skill, but just having him around makes sure the Leafs, Bruins, and Flyers don’t take liberties.

        Consider his salary as insurance against Price’s knee or Eller’s face.

        ***********************
        If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it…..
        ***********************

    • boing007 says:

      Jussi over Ollie.

      Richard R

    • frontenac1 says:

      Wouldn’t touch Scott or Kassian amigo. See above for my comments on Rosehill. He is a character guy,old school code follower. $750k.one year left with Philly.

      • Butterface says:

        Doesn’t matter. I want a policeman. Yours, mine, Philly’s. I am not looking to split hairs, just skulls.

        I would prefer not to give anything up to get a moose.
        ***********************
        If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it…..
        ***********************

  28. DipsyDoodler says:

    Regarding any trades, I say wait until Pierre McGuire is installed as Pittsburgh GM.

    That’s going to be like the buffet at an all you can eat restaurant.

    Trading with other teams now would be like loading up on bread before they bring out the shrimp and prime rib.

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

  29. third generation haber says:

    Very pleased with Bergevin being frank about where the team stands. He understands the difference between good/ up and coming teams and genuine cup-contenders.

    This was quite the subject of debate this past season on HIO, it divided many of us. I think the naysayers (like myself) have, with recent success coming out of the 2005 lockout, in-fact raised our expectations of the club and this expects how much of a tough sell we are. But demanding more, as opposed to settling for 8th place finishes each year (1995-2004), is a good thing!

    j.p. murray

  30. Mattyleg says:

    G’morning everyone!
    Longtimenopost.

    So we lost the Stanley Cup.
    These things happen more than they don’t.
    After all is said and done, I’m happy with what we acheived this season.

    Questions for the off-season now…

    What do we do with Tokarski?
    I have a radical suggestion: Trade ‘im.
    He is a starter, not a backup.
    Budaj is an excellent backup; is happy with his role, is reliable, can play good games with long breaks in between, and is (according to all reports) an excellent presence in the room. This guy ain’t going to rock the boat, complain, or want to play more games.
    Price is like Brodeur; the more he plays, the better he is. He can’t be sharing his workload too much to please a backup.

    We hang on to Boods, and trade the Toker for a sniper.

    Secondly, we have to hang on to Vanek.
    We need a goal-scorer. Gionta is no longer that guy, and Plekanec, as much as I love him, is getting less and less that guy every year.
    Bourque is, and will be, Bourque, and Eller is styling into a 3rd line centre, so we desperately need another scorer to help Max with his workload.
    Vanek fit in nicely this year, and we were very happy with him until the playoffs came along. Who knows what prompted that downturn in intensity, but I think that a longer-term deal with him and some more security of his place on the team would help his confidence.

    Otherwise, I don’t see any other snipers out there that we can pick up without losing essential pieces of our lineup.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Tokarski is unproven as an NHL starting goalie and if traded, the return would be minimal.
      No GM would risk a sniper for Tokarski.
      4 nice playoff games for a smaller framed goalie is little to no proof. See Steve Penney.

      • Mattyleg says:

        Yeah, I know.
        I was thinking about that too… but what’s the solution?
        Keep him as a backup and trade Budaj?
        I’m not sold on that idea, because then we’d have to trade Tokarski (for a good return, mind you) and try to find another decent backup again.

        It’s a difficult position.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • Maritime Ronn says:

          I wonder how much Cap Hit will come into play?
          DT is close to $900K less than PB and those are precious dollars

        • DipsyDoodler says:

          Absolutely.

          Budaj showed when Price was injured that he can’t handle the job.

          Sure he can be all Ned Flaners Hi Diddly Ho Neighbour in the room, and he can tend goal once every two weeks against the Panthers and Sabres, but Tokarski is much better.

          With Budaj as backup if Price gets injured we are in the lottery.

          —–
          Moving. Forward.

          • Mattyleg says:

            Sure, but that’s once again, only half the equation.
            What happens if Price goes down for a couple of weeks or a month, and Toker steps in and plays amazing?
            We end up with the points, but a goaltender controversy that could effect both of them negatively, à la Canucks.

            Nobody knows how Toker is going to react to not playing for long periods. What if he turns into a whiny little beeatch?
            Price said that the room is tight. That’s more important than anything when the chips are down.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • DipsyDoodler says:

            There won’t be a goaltender controversy.

            There will not be a time next year when Price’s job is in jeopardy.

            If Price misses two weeks and Toker lets in no goals in the interim, Price is still the number one. And no one, not even Dustin’s mom, would disagree.

            Tokarski has played all of 6 NHL games.

            We build him up next year and then trade him.

            —–
            Moving. Forward.

          • boing007 says:

            The only important detail is winning. No matter who contributes. If a backup goalie gets hot when the number one gets injured then you ride him until he runs out of gas, even if Price is your number one.

            Richard R

          • hockeyrealist says:

            You are wrong, Budaj played many of his games this year against top team (Chi, Bos, NYR, etc) and did quite well in these outings. This season he played 24 games with a 2.5 GAA and save percentage above .900. That is quality backup play especially given that most of his starts are on the road in hostile building (Chi, Bos, NYR). The fact that he is drama free, relatively cheap, makes him just what we need with a stud #1 goalie like Price. Goalies need a long time to mature and during regular season Toker looked small and young, he stepped in up in playoffs but I think he needs some more seasoning to be able to provide consistently high quality tending.

            “One defends when his strength is inadequate, he attacks when it is abundant”
            Sun Tzu

      • knob says:

        I agree about Tokarski but MB might be able to find a desparate GM. I have seen stranger things happen.

      • Cal says:

        Aww, c’mon Ronn, I thought Steve Penney’s seeing eye dog would give folks a clue that it wasn’t to be.

      • Paz says:

        I would like to see Tokarski traded, in a package deal, that would also include Plekanec.

        I think a team like the Oilers could really benefit from acquiring Plekanec and Tokarski, and we could get a top 6 forward in return, like a David Perron.

        • Mattyleg says:

          a) We’d need to get a hell of a lot more back for David Perron for those two.

          2) When you have one of the best players at a particular position, you don’t trade him. Pleks is one of the best shutdown/2-way centres in the league. He’s captain of the Czech team, which indicates his quality. He’s come through the system and bleeds bleu-blanc-rouge.

          I’m not a fan of trading Plecky. Every team could benefit from acquiring him, not just the Oilers. Every team wishes they had a player like him. We do, and we should keep it that way.

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • Paz says:

            You underestimate Perron’s talent. He just turned 26 and he’s a future 30+ goal scorer with gusts up to 40. He is also signed for the next 2 seasons under 4 million. And yes, I would expect something more than Perron in that deal.

            Plekanec is slightly over rated here. He is an elite skater, that is absolutely true.

      • New says:

        Size? Penney? See Jaro Halak.
        Just thought I’d throw that in for giggles and chuckles.

    • Cal says:

      I’m in the keep Tokarski camp. Two seasons in a row have ended with injuries to Price. It’s becoming a trend. Having an excellent goalie stand in for Price is a good thing.

      • Mattyleg says:

        That’s only looking at half the equation, though, isn’t it?
        What about having a goalie who is only used to starting sitting for more than half the season?
        Think that’s going to work well?

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • Cal says:

          I don’t believe starters should play much beyond 55 games, leaving 27 for the stand-in. They tend to run out of gas and get hurt.

          • Mattyleg says:

            That’s a generalization.
            Price didn’t play badly this year despite the number of games he played, and only got hurt when he was run into.

            Brodeur plays best when he plays a lot. Same with Luongo, and many others. 55 Games isn’t a lot, and means a lot of sitting out with long breaks between games. Lots of time to lose your rhythm.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • frontenac1 says:

            Agreed. Keep Toker and give him 25-30 games.

          • Luke says:

            I sort of agree.
            Keep Toker. He gets 12 – 15 games.

            I can’t think of a healthy starting goalie… a real #1 on a solid team… that played only 55 games.

    • New says:

      I think a backup rides the pine and kibitzes with the guys. A backup is a good guy to have around, you pick his games, and the team generally steps it up for him because…well because he is a good guy.

      Tokarski isn’t training and trying to be a backup. He wants to be in the NHL as a number 1 and to hold that Cup. Condon and Fucale feel the same way I suspect.

      So does anyone want an unhappy number 2 whose agent is just waiting for the number 1 to have a rough stretch? Haven’t fans learned anything from experience? Who did the Habs showcase and then move at the first decent offer?

      I think Tokarski is a great guy and a solid number one down the line. Trade him now to fill where the team is weak. Let him get on with his career and let media and fans cry for 10 years how Montreal let him go for nothing. Because in Montreal he will become nothing, be unhappy, and the same media and fans will grumble about that.

  31. Paz says:

    Yesterday I mentioned how well Eugenie Bouchard seems to battle on the court. Aggressive, looks for the winner, never backs down.

    Today in the quarterfinals she’s in tough against a ranked player from Spain.

    Down 5 games to 2 in the first set, Genie pulls it off and wins the first set 7-6.

    20 years old, from Montreal of course!

    update: lost in the second set. This is a very tough match, but winner advances to semi finals of the French Open

  32. HabinBurlington says:

    Further to Ed’s (Paz) post below regarding Turk. I too am not happy about the prospect of losing Gallant. I think Gallant was a wonderful voice of reason on that bench, he also was the guy that seemed to have the players ear and trust (based on watching 24CH). These are all characteristics of good Asst. Coaches, a much different role than the Head Coach.

    He also struck me as guy with a different voice among the coaches, he wasn’t an age old ally of MT from years gone by. To me he indeed was like Kirk Muller was to JM.

    I wish Turk the best if he gets the gig in Florida, but part of me selfishly wants him to not get the job.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      That is one issue with the habs being a first class organization. Other organizations will target your staff. It does happen to all teams but the top organizations seem to lose their staff the most.

      I hope he stays in Montreal but I wouldn’t want to see him stay an assistant coach forever. He is a smart hockey guy and probably should be running his own team

    • Luke says:

      Yah, I concur. Actually, prior to the hiring of MT, GG was the fellow I was hoping the Habs would hire. At the time I was unaware of his linguisitic skilllzzzzz.

      I like what I saw from Gallant, perhaps he’ll see that the Head Coach of the stagnant Floridas is not as good of a career builder as the Assistant of the rising Habs. (Not dissimilar to Muller’s foray into Raleigh).

      C’mon, MB slide him a couple of fins under the table and ask him to wait this one out…

  33. knob says:

    Centres:
    Galchenyuk – potential – 1st line
    Briere – established – 2nd line
    Desharnais – established – 2nd line
    Eller – potential – 2nd line
    Plekanec – established – 3rd line
    Bournival – potential – 3rd line
    White – established – 4th line

    To me, it makes sense to have the following format:
    Line 1 – Galchenyuk – he will have his struggles but will be a benefit
    Line 2 – Eller – see Galchenyuk
    Line 3 – Plekanec – was huge in shutting down players in the playoffs
    Line 4 – White – he is the only player that fits the mould and is good on face offs.

    What does this mean?
    Briere – has a NTC/MVC – he should be used in a scoring role. Play him with Galchenyuk and Patches maybe?
    Desharnais – (this won’t be popular) is really the odd man out. Eller and Galchenyuk are better players
    Bournival – let him play with Gallagher and Plekanec until he is ready to take over the third line centre position.

    Patches-Galchenyuk-Briere
    (new player)-Eller-Bourque
    Bournival-Plekanec-Gallagher
    Prust-White-Weise

  34. boing007 says:

    Comment from the TSN webpage:

    the-greatest-man-that-ever-lived
    4 days ago

    The Habs have nothing to be ashamed of ! They are only entering their third decade of the ‘rebuilding process’ !

    Richard R

    • Mattyleg says:

      Wonder who that poster supports?
      Toronto?
      Winnipeg?
      Vancouver?
      Ottawa?
      Edmonton?
      Calgary?

      People in glass houses and all that…

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

  35. HairyHabist says:

    Bergevin could probably sign Gionta, Markov and Weaver for the same money it would cost to sign Vanek.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      I disagree on that. Markov will get close to 6 million a season. Vanek may get 7.5. You couldn’t sign Gio for less than 4 and weaver less than 2 mill for 2 years.

      Just my estimates but Vanek hurt his value with his playoffs and Olympic performances. I would say he gets 7.5 for 6 years from someone. It won’t be the habs though.

      He should have taken the deal in the Island. He will never see that kind of money from another team

      • Strummer says:

        Vanek turned down the Islanders because he doesn’t need the money. He has career earnings so far of $52 million.

        He wants to play for a team that has a chance to win.

        He can probably make the same as the Isles offered but we will see on July 1. There are always teams willing to overpay if they have the cap space (NYR, Minnesota TML)

        ____________________________________________________
        “You are not T.J. Oshie. Do not shoot pucks at people without a helmet.”.

      • Mattyleg says:

        Vanek didn’t hurt his value at all.
        As Chris Nilan said, GMs didn’t just fall off the turnip truck.
        They know how good players are, and aren’t going to let a brief upswing or downturn in their form taint their overall evaluation of a player.

        And Vanny doesn’t want cash, he wants to play for an organization that isn’t a joke.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • Kooch7800 says:

          Time will tell Matty but he will want to get as much cash as he can. I don’t ever think that cash doesn’t come into play. We are all human. Of course he will want to win but he will want to see what cash is on the table.

          The islanders have a decent core and really if they get a real GM they could go far.

      • HairyHabist says:

        Markov’s last contract paid him $5.75 mil per season. He’s not going to get an increase at 35yrs old. They could probably sign him for about $3 mil per season if they gave him the 3yrs that he wants.

        Gionta is also 35yrs old. He was paid $5 mil per season for the last 5 yrs. That’s a lot of money for 40 points a season. At his age and production level, he’s likely looking at a 50% salary cut if he wants to play in the NHL.

        Weaver’s 36yrs old and made $1.1 mil last year. He can maybe make the same money on a 1yr contract.

        That’s $6.5 to $7 mil per season for the 3 of them for 1 to 3 years.
        Vanek has already turned down more than $7mil per season for 7 years from the Islanders.

        To me it’s a no brainer. Vanek can’t play the speed and defense style of the Canadiens. He’s a one dimensional player who has problems when the team isn’t built around him.

        • Kooch7800 says:

          Markov was 5th on the team in scoring and was 2nd highest scoring D man on the team while averaging 25 minutes a game leading all D men on average ice time. If you think he is taking a pay cut I think you are wrong. If the habs don’t resign him he will get 6 mill on the free market easily.

          Gionta isn’t going to sign with the habs for 2.5 million a season when Briere is making 4 million. Gionta had 18 goals this year and was only 3 points behind Pleks…and you want him to cut his salary in half? He will go back to Jersey and play with his Brother and I bet pulls in around 4 million easily.

          Weaver will be close to 2 million and will most likely need a 2 year deal which he is worth.

          Vanek isn’t a factor in my opinion. He was decent in the regular season but didn’t elevate the team the way we needed in the playoffs.

          • HairyHabist says:

            You’re not taking into consideration their ages. Which is huge under the current CBA. Young players get signed. Veterans take pay cuts or they go play in the K.

        • Loop_Garoo says:

          I think that 3 million a year would be perceived as a big “screw you’ from the habs to Markov. On the open market he easily gets at least 4.5 for 4 years, if not more, and there would be a dozen teams lining up for it.

          • HairyHabist says:

            It’s not $3 million. It’s a guaranteed $9 million over 3 years. Nobody in the NHL signs players over 35 for 4yrs anymore. Not even guys like Jagr, Iginla or Selanne can get that.

  36. HabinBurlington says:

    So Dan Marino loses his gig on CBS this past off season and boom he has a lawsuit against NFL, I am sure the change in income is a coincidence, and the lawsuit was planned for years……

    And I was a huge Marino fan, especially when he was a Pitt Panther.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Marino joining the lawsuit gives it credibility. It’s more likely that he couldn’t sue the league while still with CBS, than that he’s suing now to get money because he lost his gig. As I understand it this lawsuit will set up a fund that will cover all medical costs for any player. So Marino doesn’t gain much personally by suing the league, and has likely put an end to his TV career.

      The NFL was negligent and continues (like the NHL) to treat players like gladiators in ancient Rome.

      —–
      Moving. Forward.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        It’s the credibility of Dan saying, “Hey I’m fine, the league is great, listen to me talk every Sunday”, “What’s that? I’m fired? Eff the league, they are evil, they made me play injured, I have never supported their stance on many issues, Add me to the list of people suing”

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          Don’t stop being a Marino fan, Burly. I’m sure the story is way more complex than reported, and that his motives are good. Can’t be for dough — he’s rolling in it. I’m with Dipsy on this one.

    • Strummer says:

      I loved Marino in “Ace Ventura, Pet Detective ”

      ____________________________________________________
      “You are not T.J. Oshie. Do not shoot pucks at people without a helmet.”.

  37. HabinBurlington says:

    I think our GM is one of the better ones in the league for knowing exactly how to provide misdirection. Yesterday’s presser was simply a thanks boys and now i have work to do this summer, see y’all at the draft.

  38. Walmyr says:

    Hello boys and girls…

    I vote to (try) to sign Thomas Kovalev Vanek!

    But before that try to have a nice chat with your coaching staff in order to check if it’s possible to:
    – use him as you most skilled forward
    – put him the most minutes on the ice you can
    – play him in his natural/prefered side of the ice
    – play him with your best forwards available

    CHeers

  39. SmartDog says:

    At his presser, Bergevin really said very little. AKA, nothing.
    I’m not surprised at this. But I think those who are trying to read his intentions are mistaken. In my mind there was NOTHING there. Praise for Gionta is just good manners, and fair judgement. Same goes for praise for Plekanec and Gorges. But I think none of these guys in untouchable.

    I would be surprised if Gionta stays if for no other reason than he would have to take a big pay cut to do so. Or let me put it this way: would you sign Gionta or Markov? Because if you take Gionta at anything but rock bottom, he might prevent another signing (Markov? Vanek?).

    This is also why I wouldn’t sign Markov. (That, and that he’s getting slow.) But that’s me.

    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • Ton says:

      Exactly……..dont tell your oponents what you are going to do……..Gainey was good at this………I could see the press and fans starting to turn on MB……..they need to know all of his moves……not going to happen. As for signings………they have a priority list…………internal its all about whether they want a player back or not………they not want markov back! Lots going on internally that we don’t know.

  40. boing007 says:

    After about four minutes into the third period, with the Rangers leading 1-0, the Rangers D began to play The Trap. Watch the paint dry time. Had no confidence whatsoever that Montreal could find that one goal to tie the game. That’s when I turned off the TV.

    Richard R

    • kalevine says:

      wow I know it looked bad, but I sort of felt obliged to stick it out.
      That being said, if it had gone to OT I might have had to switch it off. :)

  41. JUST ME says:

    When Bergevin said that the Habs are not a mature team yet i think it means that there will not be many changes in the roster so these guys can grow some more together.
    Remember trade deadline ? We all thought that this guy, this guy, this guy and this one were gone. Finally nobody left except for Diaz and au contraire we added a few players to define our depth even more.

    I am not saying that everyone will be back because i don`t even know if we can afford them all but i expect minor changes . Weise and Weaver seemed to me as minor changes but ended up much much more.

    Personnaly i would like one big trade to solve the center situation and replace Vanek if he does not sign here but i also understand that we went real far with that group and must be carefull not to break the team up as much as improve it here and there .

  42. 24 Cups says:

    Another look at the Habs’ future.

    Lots of valid points but I’ll pass on Moulson who was a trade deadline flop. I’m also not giving Iginla the type of contract that he received from the Bruins. 5M a season for a two year term is as far as I’d go.

    http://montreal.ctvnews.ca/wilde-feel-the-pride-as-the-habs-plan-for-the-future-1.1845199#ixzz33Uixtr3w

    24 Cups

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Re Moulson

      It may have had something to do with this

      ” Matt Moulson had an oblique injury and a groin issue in the postseason.”He was having a hard time moving,” GM Chuck Fletcher said. Moulson tried to play through the ailments.
      He posted a goal and two assists in 10 games before sitting out the last three contests of Round 2.
      Source: Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune May 17th

      Re Iginla.
      I believe when he first moved to Pitt then Boston, it was reported that Montreal was NOT on his list of teams to play for or be traded to.

  43. Cal says:

    This is all Dunboyne’s fault, so I am passing the responsibility for this to him. See More more more here.

  44. DipsyDoodler says:

    I loved Tomas Vanek coming here. He’s exactly the kind of player I like. That slap pass to Plekanec vs the Bruins. It was so good that Plex had like 5 seconds to shoot it into the empty net. That’s why I watch the game.

    But something went very wrong. If he was injured (and I still think he had to be) that’s one thing.

    If he wasn’t injured then either Therrien screwed up or he has major attitude problems. Or both.

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

    • Ozmodiar says:

      I don’t think it was an attitude problem, rather more of a comfort level problem.

      Still, I wouldn’t sign him long-term. I don’t like the lack of speed, grit. Not a fit.

    • JUST ME says:

      Not sure it`s either or…

      Maybe it`s a bit of everything.
      -20 games is not much to show what you have and to get used to new teammates.
      -Was Vanek really interrested in MTL ,was he going all in or was he just a passenger until the end of the season ?
      -Did vanek really fit in the MTL mold ?
      -Maybe it was not a question of attitude but just that Vanek is like that .
      Was it or is it meant to be ?
      I believe that without the announcement of his coming here the rest of the team would not have believed that they could go deep in the playoffs, it gave them that special push of motivation. Just for that it was worth it.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Vanek’s going to a place where he’ll be Top 6, and a coach won’t shuffle him to the 3rd line.

      He also knows he’d be eaten alive by the Montreal media and fans.
      His style and lumbering skating is not Montreal.
      Fast forward 3 years when he really begins to slow down and perhaps loses some scoring skill..

      He’ll be playing with Miko Koivu and Zack Parise next year.
      Minnesota has the Vikings-the Twins- the Timberwolves, and a lot of NCAA for fan distractions.

      Could also see him in Tampa…

      • Ton says:

        hence the reason MB management style is resembling Gainey’s with every passing day……..give the media and the fans as little as possible……..they don’t run the team. MT shuffled him on the third line to get away from coverage……..he did play every power play.

      • kalevine says:

        he can lumber and float all he wants if he is scoring or setting up key goals. Which he wasn’t doing quite enough in the playoffs

        • Maritime Ronn says:

          Expectations were too high.
          His recent 5 years shows that he is a 25-30 goal scorer and not 35-40.

          • kalevine says:

            although he was on poor teams for the most part. Not sure who his line mates were. I think he might have had a confidence issue around the playoffs, and perhaps getting to round 3 this year could help next year

    • Phil C says:

      No question they were probably not happy with his attitude, but I blame this one completely on the coaches. You have to put players in situations that exploit their skills. For example, we all know Desharnais doesn’t score a lot of goals himself, but he is great at passing, so he needs wingers who can finish. Playing with Pacioretty and Cole in 2012 (ie wingers who can score), he was able to put up great numbers. In fact that line was one of the top producing lines in the league after January in 2012. What would you think would happen if you put DD with a couple of guys with stone hands? I am pretty sure he would not produce.

      Vanek is a forward with great hands, amazing vision, but very average skating ability. Therefore he needs linemates who are strong at possessing the puck, good passers, and can equal his vision. That’s why he immediately started producing when he was put on the DD line.

      It was obvious to me that he was a bad match with Plekanec from day one, and my perception of the situation is validated by Vanek’s own comments. Why didn’t the coaches see it? Or listen to the player? This is yet another example of why I think this coaching staff has an offensive blind spot.

  45. SmartDog says:

    I think Montreal is close to a complete team. As Galchenyuk, Eller, Tinordi, Pateryn, and Beaulieu mature we get closer without doing anything.

    And there are some guys who really are starting to show their age – even if they are not that old. So…

    IF I WAS THE GM OF THE HABS, THIS IS WHAT WOULD DO:

    1. Try to sign Vanek. If I can get him for 7 million for under 5 years, take it. He’s a proven elite scorer. He has size and skill. He was bounced around this year and that probably took its toll. But this probably is a non-starter… I’m not going over 7 and he’s probably headed elsewhere anyway… and if we do sign Vanek, that’s the end of the Markov conversation. So moving on…

    2. Let go of anyone finishing a contract, who is over 30 and not named Weaver or Markov.

    3. Sign Weaver to a 2 year deal at 1.5-2 if I can.

    4. Offer Markov 1 year at 5.75 or 2 at 5 (max). Let him go if he refuses. He’s getting slow; and he’s not a teacher. We have young guys who can use the ice time to develop and other ‘teaching’ veterans are out there. Many will disagree. But I would take a hard line here. I watched too many guys fly past him in the 2nd half of the season to pay him top dollar, and with Subban and Bealieu I have my future PP QBs wanting his ice time.

    5. Assuming no Vanek, make it known in the league that I’m looking for a big top 6 RW or RW prospect, and that these players are potentially available for the right trade: Gorges, Plekanec, Prust, Moen, Briere, as well as some of my strong D prospects if the return is good. I’d hate to lose Plekanec but if I can get a fast scoring winger in return, it’s a trade I would make.

    6. Ask my pro scouting team to look for another Dale Weise if he’s out there… a fast, tough, gritty top 6. If there are none, I’d let go of a little speed for a mean streak. If not that, sign Ryan White as a stopgap and for possible trade.

    7. Ask my pro scouting team to identify any big and/or mean but disciplined depth D that might be out there and available at a low cost.

    That’s it. Add more toughness, speed, and scoring punch, in exchange for a couple of useful but slowing veterans. Plan the parade.
    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Excellent armchair GMing.

      What’s your opinion of Vanek? For simplicity’s sake, how would you rank him with former Hab streaky and supposedly elite scorers: Ryder, Cammalleri, Kostitsyn, Cole?

      • SmartDog says:

        I would put Vanek above all of them. He’s an elite sniper. He has size. I think he’s a winner. As a player he’s more of an artiste than those others which I think didn’t come out well combined with the line juggling in the playoffs, and being bounced around in general. But I think with Montreal (or any team) longer term he would thrive and be dominant. We saw how he can be – and I don’t think he has a work ethic issue, he seems to be tough on himself. Imagine him with Chucky going forward. Wow.

        ————————————-
        Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

      • habstrinifan says:

        May I ECHO Smartdog’s reply. “I would put Vanek above all of them”.

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        Cheers, SD, Boing and Trini.

        That’s more or less how I see/saw Vanek also (although I would still take Cole Season One ahead of him).

        But the puzzle remains, plausible explanations notwithstanding: what the hell happened to him during the playoffs, especially since he claims not to have been injured?

        I’m going to presume MB/MT know best what to do here.

    • Ton says:

      good analysis…….that would be my plan. Vanek may not want a 7 or 8 year contract! He may except the offer. He’s has to be up there in regards to career earnings! He may want 5 years and than retire……..he doesn’t have to skill set to play well between the ages of 35 and 40……..ex. Hull had to retire in the new NHL! I agree with you on the maturing part of the youth core……it will take time.

    • Cal says:

      1. I’d rather have Vanek than not- Habs have no replacement.
      2. It’s time to move on.
      3. Yup.
      4. I wouldn’t even come up with an offer. Again, it’s time to move on.
      5. I’d try to get that RW, too, especially if Gio is gone, too.
      6. I am believing they are always on the lookout for under-used bargains.
      7. ditto

      • SmartDog says:

        Re. 6 and 7. I’m sure you’re right. But Bergie needs to tell them what he most wants so they can create a list. For example he doesn’t need another budget skilled puck-moving D. We just got rid of one (Diaz). He doesn’t need a center…. etc. my 6 and 7 are the kind of depth I would ask my guys to look for.

        ————————————-
        Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

  46. gmur says:

    Lots of talk of getting rid of Gionta and Pleks due to their playoff performances. Bergevin’s comments seem to indicate that he won’t be getting rid of veterans who guide the team through the gruel of a 82-game season. Some players help you to make the playoffs, others help you get through the playoffs. In my opinion, Gionta and Plekanec are solid veterans who will help the team make the playoffs next year. Unless you find other veterans to replace those two, why not keep them? In any event, if one goes, I hope it’s Gionta. Plekanec is a coveted player around the league. In a trade for Plekanec, I would expect there would have to be a top-tier young player in the mix or a steady veteran with size and grit.

    • Cal says:

      It’s time for them to move on. Gio by way of FA and Pleks by way of trade. Pleks may well get the Habs a RW that can play hard. Who that is depends on the trading partner and if Pleks will be traded there (he has a modified NTC).

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Re Gio, it will all depend on money and budget and the role he will be asked to play (3rd liner?) and whether he will accept that role.

      There will also be demand for his services on the open market – young teams looking for a great vet such as Colorado-Columbus-Edmonton-Tampa-Buffalo-Nashville-Islanders-Dallas-Winnipeg…
      Even a more veteran team may be looking to fill a temporary hole.

      Some other teams may also bid for him just to get to the new Salary Cap floor of about $52M such as Buffalo

      • Ozmodiar says:

        I don’t think it will all depend on the money.

        There’s a chance the team might want to get bigger and decide to move on. If they decide this, it might not matter if he’s willing to sign for, say $3M.

        Maybe MB envisions a 3rd line of 3 of:
        JDR, Leblanc, Eller, Weise, Bourque

    • kalevine says:

      great that they get you to the playoffs, but then don’t have them eat up so many minutes in the playoffs

  47. boing007 says:

    Been reading the comments page at TSN. The article on the Stanley Cup Finals generated one page of comments and the article on the Habs generated sixteen pages of comments.

    Richard R

  48. punkster says:

    How smart would a GM be to heap public praise, however well deserved, on a player who he is presently in the middle of negotiating a long term big money contract with a hardass agent?

    How smart would a GM be if he were to heap public scorn, however well deserved, on a player he may be thinking of trading or not re-signing?

    What did anyone expect from MB yesterday? The season and playoff results speak for themselves. MB’s toughest jobs, biggest files, and most important decisions are on his mind right now. The last thing he needs is to add any controversy to the mix.

    Release the Subbang!!!

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Of course you’re right. My reaction this morning was that of a huge PK fan. If I’m Bergevin I say similar things, maybe. :)

    • Ozmodiar says:

      > What did anyone expect from MB yesterday?

      I expected exactly what I got. Nothin’!!

      Even if there was som’thin’, i’d just assume that som’thin’ was a bit ‘o misdirection for player agents and opposing GM’s that Bergie’s chattin’ with. He seems smart like that. Maybe it’s the suits.

      Yup, definitely the suits.

  49. Lafleurguy says:

    Didn’t believe it at first when That’s Hockey Tonight reported the Habs have the 6th largest amount of cap-space. Way to go MB.

    Prediction, more than one team will try to steal Subbie from the Habs, like Holmgren tried with Shea Weber.
    http://www.capgeek.com/

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      If the Cap goes to $69M, GMMB will have about $24M left.
      Looks like a lot, doesn’t it?
      Subban-Eller-Weise should eat up about $13M-$14M of that.

      That leaves $ $10-11M left and decisions concerning Markov-Gionta-White-Weaver-Bouillon…and UFAs the Habs are pursuing.

      Looks good at first, but the money will be gone fast.

      Briere at $4M for a Bottom 6/10-12 minute player hurts, as does Gorges $3.9M for another 4 years.

      • rhino514 says:

        They could (and should) buy out Moen.
        If they actually needed the cap space for a premier free agent, they could also easily buy out Briere. Due to his being a previous buy out I think it costs the team very little to buy him out. They could also trade Budaj for basically nothing and get rid of his salary
        So I think there is definitely room to sign both a premiere free agent if one is available, and also to re-sign Markov (though I don´t think they should overpay). I don´t think it will hurt the team much if they can´t bring Gionta back, as good as he´s been for the team.

        • Loop_Garoo says:

          Moen can be traded, not for much, but a team like Edmonton would likely love a tougher guy with experience and good leadership skills. I would probably test the market for Bourque too, depending on who you plan on pursuing on the open market. Moen and Bourgue trades would open up some money and bring a couple extra draft picks, after R.B’s playoff performance, someone might be willing to give up a 2nd rounder, add in an extra 3rd round pick for Moen maybe, could give some draft depth and reduce payroll enough to sign someone valuable.

          • boing007 says:

            Don’t want any picks, ready to insert into the lineup players only.

            Richard R

        • Maritime Ronn says:

          Briere would free up big space

          Instead of $4M Cap Hit this year, he would show up as a Cap Hit of $1.333M for each of the next 2 years.
          Mr. Molson would also save $1,3M in Salary….yet always the question of torch passing politics.

          Tokarski ($562K Cap Hit) for Budaj ($1.4M Cap Hit) is a no brainer.

    • SmartDog says:

      Yes but they have to sign Subban and Eller, and Weise as well. That’s gonna be almost $15 million. (S=8.5, E=4, W=2)

      ————————————-
      Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

      • rhino514 says:

        Eller gets four million, after the season he had? Does he have rights to arbitration? Even so, i don´t think they take postseason performance into account, which was good, not great, and only 17 games anyway.

        • Loop_Garoo says:

          I think more likely looking at 2.8-3 for Eller, 1.5 for Wiese for a 2 or 3 year deal, so hopefully those numbers become 8, 3, 1.5, for a total of 12.5 million.

  50. Paz says:

    Losing Gallant is a big loss. I thought Gallant was excellent back there, really on top of what was going on and really helpful.

  51. SmartDog says:

    Can someone close to Vail in Windsor add some insight into why this kid wasn’t signed? His numbers are good, he’s 6’1″, strong plus-minus. I’m hoping the Habs aren’t making a mistake just signing guys with a physical presence and ignoring everyone else.

    Related – if there wasn’t a lot of space could they have just let someone else go and signed Vail? Surely there is someone in Hamilton who isn’t panning out… I mean, is there ANYONE in Hamilton who plays up front who is?

    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      His numbers are so-so and he’s a 20 year old.

      For comparison, Ryan White had more points as a 19 year old.

      I think Vail being a defensive specialist in the OHL two years after he was drafted is a sign he might be lacking something.

      Then again if we’re signing guys like Jack Nevins…

      —–
      Moving. Forward.

      • Paz says:

        Numbers are fine, better than when we drafted him.

        The six-foot-one, 197-pound Vail had his best season statistically in the Ontario Hockey League in 2013-14. He had career highs in goals (32), assists (51) and points (83) while finishing tied for 19th in league scoring. He also was among the league’s top 40 plus/minus players with a career-best plus 29 in 67 games on a team that scored just 14 goals more than it allowed.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Maximum number of contracts per team is 50 and each one is precious.
      They know what they’re doing.

      • Ozmodiar says:

        Nature of the beast. There’s been a draft since Vail was picked, another coming up shortly… prospect pool keeps getting refilled, unless GM sucks. Can’t keep them all.

  52. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Dan Marino is suing the NFL over concussions.

    http://edition.cnn.com/2014/06/02/us/dan-marino-concussion-lawsuit/

    It’s great that such a big name has joined in — I really hope all professional contact sports organisations start to pay proper attention to the momentum that is gathering in opposition to complacent policies concerning brain injury.

    • I don’t have a clue who this kid is (We’re Western Hockey) but when teams decide to pass on a player it’s usually about character. He looks like a future power forward on paper but stats mean nothing unless you see every single point live. That’s why I never critique Ontario East players. Plus I’m tired of Montreal drafting my picks and never thanking me.

      Shane Oliver
      @sholi2000
      http://www.sholi2000.com
      A Little fun during the Intermission
      Don’t Poke The Bear

      • mksness says:

        character doesn’t get people to the nhl… skill does( character is important but you still have to be able to play). i’m pretty sure they identified something in his game that won’t transition over to the ahl or nhl and moved on.

        • Loop_Garoo says:

          For every guy that makes it, there is an equally skilled guy, or two that don’t because they don’t have the character to work hard, be a good team-mate, stay in great shape, etc etc. Character is as critical as skill.

          • Dunboyne Mike says:

            There is also an element of randomness, as in lots of other occupations.

            Think of “The Claw” at Pizza Planet in Toy Story.

            (wish I could do gifs like Props does…..)

          • Loop_Garoo says:

            Good point Dunboyne Mike, I think if you are a top 2 line guy, you are going to find a place, but as far as the 3rd and especially 4th line type players, there is, like you say, an element of randomness, one guy gets called up because another one is hurt, or shoots left instead of right etc, one gets a shot, the other never does.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      He has the size but there must have been something wrong if the habs decided to pick Nevins instead who is a big bruiser. Nevins I just don’t see the offensive upside but then again who knows. Nevins looks like a poor mans Brian Bickel

  53. Habfan10912 says:

    Good morning friends. In reading several post it appears I’m not the only one who likes to read between the lines of Bergevin’s comments. Two things that really stuck me was Bergevins comments concerning Pleks and Gio. We saw another sub par playoff performance bt Pleks. Although he didn’t call himself out for playing like a “girl”, he wasn’t very noticeable either.

    As for Gio, I don’t know how any reasonable person could look at his play this season and not see a shell of the former Gio. Leadership aside, I don’t think this teams improves if Gio is in a major role.

    One last thing. You all know my affection for PK is huge. I admit my bias but I’m getting a little annoyed at the lack of “atta boy” comments when it comes to out best player not named Price. The compliments are almost always meant with, “Well, PK has improved a lot since I got here.” Meanwhile he leaps praise on Gorges, Gio and Pleks. I don’t get it.

    PK may have improved as a player since Bergevin got here but for the love of God, from day 1 PK has been one of the best players on the ice. Every stinking night. I just don’t get it.

    • I was going to say I wonder how many points LeBlanc would have playing with Gionta’s ice time but then saw that he is a center. Gooooooooooooood MOoooooooooorning Jim!!

      With the young talent and leadership the Habs have, Gionta can be replaced by almost anyone.

      Geez the was way Weise was playing you would have thought he was drafted by the Habs, been playing for years and is now ready for a letter. Everyday you heard him on the radio.

      Gionta is 36 in Jan, because the Habs love him, maybe he gets a low two year deal.

      Shane Oliver
      @sholi2000
      http://www.sholi2000.com
      A Little fun during the Intermission
      Don’t Poke The Bear

    • Cal says:

      I think that media conference was a waste of an hour. He doesn’t heap praise upon PK because he still sees that there is more to get from him. PK is one of the best in the league right now, but he still has room to improve.
      For myself, I find PK holds on to the puck too long and keeps trying long bomb passes to a winger that is standing still. All this when a simple pass is the way to go. I’d also like to see him join the rush by charging up the middle without the puck and create space for the forwards coming into the zone.
      He will be the highest paid Hab in history, and, to me, MB wants to keep PK on an even keel by not praising or criticizing too much. We’re lucky as hell PK is with the Habs, and we’ve got years of his scintillating performances ahead of us.

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        All good points (as usual, Cal). Just one question: why are those wingers standing still? If his fwds are static, maybe that’s what triggers PK to “do too much”)….

        (Actually, two questions: why didn’t you bite on my Moar, Moar Moar bait yesterday?!).

        • Cal says:

          As PK carries the puck up out of his zone, the forwards are moving up, too. When they hit the blue line, they run out of space and either are forced into the center or are forced into the boards by coverage.
          (Didn’t see the Moar, Moar, Moar bait- going blind with (r)age!Would I be correct in thinking Motley Crue’s Girls, Girls Girls would be appropos?)

      • Kooch7800 says:

        PK was amazing in the Boston series, he and Price were our best. I didn’t think he looked good against the Rangers though

    • HabinBurlington says:

      One thing we have learned from MB is he able to make moves, decisions etc.. and have no one outside his circle know what is coming. I think yesterday was a day to compliment and thank all the players for their efforts for the past season. I can’t see yesterday’s presser being “THE” blueprint for the upcoming offseason. However, there probably was a little bit of negotiating going on regarding PK’s big upcoming contract.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Sorry, but Pleks’ performance wasn’t subpar. He shut down Boston’s number one line, kept Stamkos in check, was awesome on the PK, and chipped in decent number of points.

      He was a major part of beating the Bruins.

      Why do we criticize our own team so much?

      —–
      Moving. Forward.

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        But Dipsy, it’s about scoring.

        Therefore Pleks sucks, along with Tokarski and Therrien.

      • Habfan10912 says:

        I think your last sentence is right. In my haste to see PK get the recognition I feel he deserves I stepped on a player or two. Two minutes unsportsmanlike posting to 10912.

      • kalevine says:

        it sure was subpar in round 3, and, although he had plenty of company, you look to your vets to take you further, to step up, to score or make a big play when all seems lost, kind of the way players on the Hawks and Kings did, or St Louis did in game 4 when another OT loss might have killed the Rangers. We didn’t get it from Pleks, yet again in the playoffs. It seems like a godo playoff year for Pleks is 2 rounds.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Well said, Jim.
      Answer: Montreal is just a tough crowd.
      I agree with you: PK was the star of our playoffs.

    • Savardian Spin-o-rama says:

      Trust me, there’s lotsa love for PK in the front office. So why isn’t MB singing his praises as rapturously as we fans might like? Pretty obvious to me: it’s the contract. Talking up PK in public is nice and all but it’s not good business as it weakens your negotiating position. PK gets that. To borrow his favourite phrase, “at the end of the day” PK will get his dough and when they have the presser to announce it, that’s when we’ll hear what they really think of our stud d-man.

      ~~ You’ve been spun ~~

  54. Marc10 says:

    So I’m thinking Weaver is at least going to get two years from another team out there and Cube easily one. Not sure either player will be back, but I would believe management’s preference would be to retain Weaver. But if he’s not around… they might just keep Cube for one more year.

    IMO, Cube was better than Emelin during the playoffs by a wide margin. Then again, so was every other D man on the Habs…

    • CH Marshall says:

      I found myself cringing a lot when Emelin was playing, particularly when he had the puck and the forecheck was coming. Re Weaver, I’d like to see him back solely because of his PK experience..

      As for Cube, I don’t know… I feel like he’s just there because he’s one of MT’s favorites. Just my perception.

      • Marc10 says:

        Cube gets a bad wrap because he’s small. I’d rather have a bigger body of course and hopefully the big kids are ready to step in and will have the foot speed and the awareness to play NHL caliber hockey.

        Cube is an MT favourite for good reason. He’d go through a wall for his coach and has done it in junior and in the pros. He’ll fight middleweights for his teammates, he’s the strongest guy pound for pound on the team, he’s always fit,and he never complains when he’s benched… And most importantly, as was evident in the playoffs, Cube can still skate.

        Plus he scored two big goals. Defensively, him and Mike looked arguably better than Markov and Yemmy. Other than PK (and possibly Markov if you overlook his slow foot speed and poor reads), you might say Cube and Weaver were head of the class… ahead of Gorges and co… and they did it at the most important time of the year.

        That’s impressive no matter how you slice it. Both Weaver and Cube will get offers and they deserve them. I’d love it if we had Chicago or LA’s top six D. In that scenario we could keep Cube and he’d be just fine. But that’s not the reality…

        We do need to move the kids up to the big club. That means pairing them with really sound defencemen if we’re not going to get taken to the woodshed… Gorges will be OK, but Markov and Yemmy (especially the latter)… well they better pick up their game if they’re going to be playing with Tiny, Beaulieu or Pateryn. Otherwise it’s going to be a long season.

        That’s my love dedication to Cube. He deserves credit from someone on HIO… Well there it is.

        • Lafleurguy says:

          Hey M10! If the defense corps all defended like Weaver, we still may be playing. Bouillon deserves some praise for his timely goals, a result of his footspeed, and his dogged or Gallagher-like effort on defense. Emelin, and at times Markov were the weakest links on defense.

      • filmnoir2012 says:

        I am sure glad you are not a GM!!!!

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          Even though we sure don’t act like it most of the time, ALL of us here are ALL glad that NONE of is the GM!

          Interesting handle btw.

          Cheers

    • Bouillon is 39 in Oct, I’ll be shocked if even signs anywhere for anything other than league minimum. Why bring him in to any team?

      Shane Oliver
      @sholi2000
      http://www.sholi2000.com
      A Little fun during the Intermission
      Don’t Poke The Bear

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      G’day.
      I agree about Cube > Emelin.
      It is NOT how it should have been, and I’m hoping that we can put this down to how long it take to come back from ACL injury. It seems to be the case that players are able to return to the ice long before they get back up to 100%. Hopefully that has been the case with Emelin (as it was with Markov before).
      Also, don’t we need to get Emelin playing on his preferred side?

  55. Habitant in Surrey says:

    ‘Habs aren’t always treated fairly, Pacioretty says’, by Pat Hickey, re the link above

    …dick-head Habs Fans, whom are not, thank Gawd, the majority, but are in sufficient numbers, especially in the part 20 to 30 years, and getting worse each season, are the more difficult and soul-burning to Our Players to deal with than the other 29 NHL teams

    • Timo says:

      Oh the things they (players) suffer through…

      • The Jackal says:

        LOL Timo. You always come across as super bitter about the money they get paid. Whatever. Yeah it’s a lot, but these are people with A) extremely rare talents and B) highly demanding lifestyles that take them away from having regular lives for their relatively short careers.

        Sure, they get to retire with a lot in the bank, but that’s not including the physical price – bad injuries, chronic pain… concussions and brain trauma. Also, there are hundreds of players who are on the bubble of making the NHL, who pay the physical price but never quite make it – they don’t have much to fall back on. Yeah NHL salaries are really high but they come with a price.

        And that’s not even including the extreme pressure these jobs carry, which is what Hickey’s piece is getting at. You’d be extremely stupid to think that the players were not as disappointed, nay, more disappointed than you after a loss. No matter what they are paid, they are people who have to live under the scrutiny of millions of bosses, something that is not easy at all. It literally is how the old quote goes – you screw up and a red light goes on and thousands of people boo you.

        ______________________
        Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • Marc10 says:

      With the advent of Internet trolling and 24hr all sports radio, it’s amplified that’s for sure.

      I was out last night with a guy who won a popular reality show in this part of the world, and I got a glimpse of what it’s like living in a fishbowl. Pretty much every woman walking past was openly gawking at the guy…

      Tough gig being the main event… and sometimes it’s not… :-)

  56. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …so, what happens with Brady Vail now ?

    …re-entered into this summer’s Draft ?

    …or, because he played pro in Hamilton, is he now available to be signed by another NHL team ?

  57. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …the average height of eligible goalies in this coming draft is approximately 6′ 4″

    …WHERE ??? will the next great Charlie Hodge come from if We keep this up ? :(

  58. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …the summer’s NHL Draft there is someone named Ryan Mantha; 6’ 4.5″ and 225 lbs

    …I presume He is 18 years old

    …Marc !!! …PICK him !!!

    …I don’t care if he can skate, …I don’t even blo0dy well care if he can tie his skate laces !!!

    …JUST friggin’ PICK HIM !!! …fer Pete’s sake

  59. CHicoHab says:

    Sholi. Just carry around a sign that says “67”. Flash it every time your Leaf buddies stress you out. Pretty simple.

  60. Toronto starting early—http://www.bergerbytes.ca/leafs-florida-blockbuster/

    Hey did you guys hear Gretzky is coming out of retirement to play Center for the Leafs.

    What’s that? Reimer and Jonathan Bernier are THE best goaltenders in the NHL.

    This is the crap I have to put up with from my Leaf friends.

    It’s freakin June at least wait until August to sign the Great One.

    Shane Oliver
    @sholi2000
    http://www.sholi2000.com
    A Little fun during the Intermission

  61. PeterD says:

    Interesting…only 4 RFA’s to deal with…
    Guess everybody forgot about Leblanc down on the farm…he’s also a RFA.
    So unless the organisation has given up on LL, they have 5 RFA’s to deal with…Subban, Weise, White, Eller, and Leblanc.

    • The_Truth says:

      LL is finished with this organization, and likely will never have an impact at the NHL level. I think we can officialy label him a 1St round bust

  62. Mr_MacDougall says:

    ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~


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