Habs hit the road on a hot streak; Drewiske clears waivers

After taking five of a possible six points last week with Carey Price on the sidelines, the Canadiens had a travel day Sunday, heading to the West Coast to start a four-game road trip.

The Canadiens play in Los Angeles Monday (10:30 p.m., TSN-HABS, RDS, TSN Radio 690), Anaheim Wednesday (10 p.m., TSN-HABS, RDS, TSN Radio 690), Phoenix Thursday (9 p.m., TSN-HABS, RDS, TSN Radio 690) and San Jose Saturday (10 p.m., CBC, RDS, TSN Radio 690). Their next game at the Bell Centre will be on Wednesday, March 12, against the Boston Bruins.

The Canadiens announced on Sunday morning that Davis Drewiske had been put on waivers. The defenceman cleared waivers on Monday and will report to the AHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs. Drewiske has yet to play a game this season after undergoing shoulder surgery.

Peter Budaj - filling in for Price, who is recovering from a lower-body injury suffered at the Sochi Olympics – made 22 saves in Saturday’s 4-3 overtime win over the Toronto Maple Leafs, improving his record to 2-0-1 since the Olympic break. The Canadiens are 5-0-1 in their last six games.

Budaj has an 8-4-2 record this season with a 2.21 goals-against average and .918 save percentage. Price is 26-17-5 with a 2.33 GAA and .925 save percentage. The Canadiens are giving up an average of 2.40 goals per game, ranking eighth in the NHL. The Kings lead the league, giving up an average of 2.08 goals per game.

“Everyone knows what Carey Price can do, but a lot of people around the league are noticing Peter Budaj,” Max Pacioretty, who scored the OT winner Saturday, told reporters after the game. “He made some big saves early in the third period to keep us in the game.”

Said Budaj: “I’m just trying to do my part. It’s not about the number on the back, it’s the logo in the front that counts.”

Price will accompany the Canadiens on their road trip, but there’s no indication when he will be able to resume playing.

(Photo by Pierre Obendrauf/The Gazette)

Canadiens vs. Kings Preview, NHL.com

Budaj playing for logo on front of his jersey, by The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs

Habs’ Budaj proves he’s a battler, by Jack Todd

Habs wake up to beat Leafs in OT, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

Budaj filling in nicely for Price, by Pat Hickey

Habs vs. Leafs photo gallery, montrealgazette.com

Post-game interviews (video), Canadiens.com

War of attrition, Canadiens.com

Leafs go penthouse-doghouse, Toronto Star

Leafs lack depth up front, Toronto Sun

Leafs, Habs playing a dangerous game, Sportsnet.ca

Kings on four-game winning streak, L.A. Times

TradeCentre reports, TSN.ca

Deadline deals sparked Rangers’ 1994 Cup run, NHL.com

14 storylines to watch during NHL’s stretch run, NHL.com

Subban discusses his relationship with Therrien, Stu on Sports blog

Canada’s most famous hockey fan – and his beer fridge, Stu on Sports blog

Former Hab Valeri Bure now has his own wine label, Stu on Sports blog

1,160 Comments

  1. Phil C says:

    I think Gionta is undervalued at HIO for two reasons:

    1. He does not produce like he used to;
    2. He is small;

    1. is because is often given a defensive role which he plays very well, and the coach insists on playing him with Plekanec whom he has very little offensive chemistry with. If he played with Galchenyuk or Briere as his centre, I think he would score a lot more. I’m not saying they should do that because his defensive role has value, but I think it’s true.

    2. Even though he is small, he is strong on pucks, very fast, almost impossible to hit in open ice, and has made a career around the dirty areas of the ice.

    • Mattyleg says:

      I agree with this, but his shot hasn’t been anywhere near what it was before his bicep(s) tear(s) and operations.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • CJ says:

      Good morning Phil. You make some great points. Additionally, I have a great deal of respect for your insight, however I do see it differently. IMO, if not for the C, I think Gionta would already have been dealt. If we can not replace Gionta, that is a far greater indictment against the health of the future prospects of this franchise.

      No denying that Gionta adds elements, as you have noted above, however I don’t believe it a stretch to suggest that we could either replace from within or via trade.

      Personally, I would be prepared to put Bournival (when 100% and not a second before) with Pleks and Chucky. IMO, Bournival has taken a tremendous step forward this season and when given the chance, has created offence with Pleks. Using this same calibration, you could argue that 2/3 of the line remains the same, with the change being Chucky over Gio. That is a swap I would be prepared to make. Just my opinion.

      • Phil C says:

        I also respect your opinions, seeing how others view things is what is great about this site. There is always more than one way to skin a cat, so your suggestion has a lot of merit.

        My issue with it is that I really like having players on the correct side. I believe one of the reasons the 4th line has been so effective recently is finding a bonafide RWer to play with White and Bourival/Prust. With parity, every advantage or disadvantage can add up.

        The other issue is the Plekanec line often plays a shutdown role against the other team’s best line. So playing a rookie like Bournival on his off wing with the assignment to defend against the best in the league is not a sound plan IMO.

        If you trade Gionta, other than promoting Bournival to his off wing, the other options are promoting a guy like Thomas, but I doubt he is ready for 1st line minutes. This would be hugely risky. Gallagher is not suited for that role either. I guess they could use Weise, but that is less than ideal.

        The only way moving Gionta makes sense is if they also upgrade the RW position through trade. Flipping him for futures would leave a huge hole in the roster.

        • CJ says:

          Good post Phil. If memory serves me though, when Bounival was playing with Gio and Pleks, the line did create a create deal of offense and played a tremendous amount of time in the offensive zone. Therefore if the change was to insert Chucky in place of Gio, perhaps, once again, this unit could be called upon to assume a larger role in generating chances.

          Again, I have all the respect in the world for Gio, but both time and statistical trends are working against him. I have no doubt he could be recast as a defensive specialist, but at $5 million a season, I think there is better value elsewhere. It’s the same knock I have on Georges. I think he would be a great 5/6 guy, but at $3.9 million a season, that seems like a lot of money for a limited role 5 on 5 and killing penalties.

          • Phil C says:

            It is an option, except now you have your number one prospect playing on his off wing in a situation he may not succeed in, maybe even impede his development.

    • habstrinifan says:

      ” 1. He does not produce like he used to;
      2. He is small;”

      If those two are currently accurate then he is not undervalued.

      He is an asset currently in our possession much like Plekanec and Eller. It is foolhardy to dispatch them without a very defined skillset coming back… but is is also difficult to make a precise evaluation of their worth as hockey players. Do we explain the deficiency in the upper grade aspects of their niche by overstating their ability in the secondary and tertiary aspects of their niche with the team.

      If you are honest and understand my post you would admit that it is difficult to answer. A problem HABS has had with so many other players before … who upon leaving the HABS organization did indeed prove that their net worth was not as high as their grading in a HABS uniform.

      • Phil C says:

        The Habs have no one in their organization to replace him right now, so in that sense, he is very valuable in an absolute sense this year. How valuable he is relative to the cap is irrelevant at this point as there are currently no free agents to sign, and the Habs are not currently constrained by the cap from making a move, they are more constrained by assets required to make the move.

        A broader assessment of his value can be considered in the off-season when rookies can be promoted, or other free agents can be considered relative to his value going forward. I agree, this will be much more difficult to assess with an older player and skills that will eventually decline rapidly.

        I would also not consider strong defensive play secondary or tertiary to offensive play. It could be argued that preventing a goal is equally valuable as scoring one. Yzerman truly became an elite player when he became a two way player. This dramatically reduced is offensive output, but this was in no way a downgrade in his play as he has the Stanley Cups rings to prove it. Gionta is contributing in ways not always appreciated by the casual fan.

        The only way the Habs can beat a team like Pittsburgh is to shutdown the Crosby line. The only way they beat Tampa is to shutdown Stamkos, so the Plekanec/Gionta line’s role with the Habs becomes pivotal to success without having to appear on the scoresheet.

  2. DipsyDoodler says:

    Alright, I know I should stop picking on the guy, but … well one last time.

    Andrew Berkshire has this tweet, about Tim Bozon:

    Andrew Berkshire ‏@AndrewBerkshire 57m
    @saskhab Very little news coming out, which is a good thing honestly. He deserves his privacy.

    Well said, right?

    But then why have a whole thread about it on his site? And why tweet the news if it’s meant to be private, including the following assessment:

    Andrew Berkshire ‏@AndrewBerkshire 1h
    @saskhab This just so shitty. It’s possible he could get messed up long term too.

    When you have no knowledge of (1) medicine or (2) the specifics in this case? Messed up long term? Yes, that is respecting someone’s privacy.

    • D Mex says:

      Did this guy used to post here under his own name ?

      ALWAYS Habs -
      D Mex

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Dipsy

      Perhaps you just made him very happy.
      You posted and quoted him on a HIO site that receives a lot of hits.
      I’m sure he appreciates the post and exposure hoping more people visit his site to take a look….

    • CH Marshall says:

      I don’t even remember what happened here as to why suddenly Berkshire and crew stopped posting on HIO. However I do remember lots of numbers, the word Corsi, and long chain arguments

      • shiram says:

        He got annoyed at Pat Hickey for an article on Theo Fleury.

      • Cal says:

        They got into a snit over their so-called “advanced” stats that demonstrated that Gomez was still a good player at the time, but he was “unlucky.”
        Posters who’d actually played the game took umbrage and the result was an imbroglio, followed by name calling and accusations. Then, Berkshire was offered a blog and he left. (Thankfully, I must add.) From that moment, his ego became so large as to give him trouble entering doorways. I hear he still craps all over anyone who disagrees with his statistical approach. I never visit his site. I figure why give him the hits.

    • Ozmodiar says:

      The first tweet (“deserves privacy”) sounds a lot like sour grapes to me.

      If he had news of TBozon’s condition, he’d tweet it immediately. However, he’s got no such news, so claims “good thing … deserves privacy”.

  3. shiram says:

    Week of big NHL business starts now!
    Heh aren’t you all excited? I know TSN is! And to think many fathers are at home for the srping break week, think of the ratings!!

    Like many here I don’t see Bergevin making a big splash.
    Markov is still a key part of our D, and the team is having too much success to trade him.
    Habs got the best record of the League in the last 10 game, though it does not look like it when you watch them play.

    I don’t think Gio gets moved either, our depth at RW is such that we still need him.
    In fact I’m going back on my earlier thoughts, and could see him with the Habs again come next season.

    Internally we don’t really have the players to replace him, and free agency offers only these choices : Gaborik, Iginla, Alfredsson, Hemsky, Callahan, Jag, Setoguchi, Vrbata, Kulemin…
    Would any of those guys be better than Gio, some would, but they’d very likely be more expensive also.

  4. DipsyDoodler says:

    OK time to come clean.

    Those of you who keep saying that Bergevin is a moron, incompetent, etc … Are you the same people who wanted us to sign David Clarkson (on pace for 5 goals and 12 points)?

    Because I think those two sets of people overlap perfectly.

    • shiram says:

      I thought Mason Raymond would have been a good stop gap player to have for a year.
      Not Clarkson though.
      And Bergevin has done ok so far, but his is a job that is evaluated in long years.

      • Strummer says:

        Raymond would never have ended up anywhere but the Leafs given his history in Vancouver with Nonis.

        ______________________________________________________
        “It’s just an opinion- I could be wrong”

        • shiram says:

          He’s got 35 points, which would put him tied for second in points amongts Habs forward.
          Though he probably have lower numbers here,

          • Strummer says:

            No question he would have been a geat pick up for $1.5 million

            He’s a UFA in July, but I’m sure he’ll stick with Nonis

            ______________________________________________________
            “It’s just an opinion- I could be wrong”

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I wanted MB to sign David Clarkson, but also knew it would be too expensive with too much term. I also didn’t realize Clarkson has retired and therefore it is confirmed that he will never ever help the Leafs.

      Okay, he has sucked for the Leafs so far this year, but if he has a great playoffs does that mean he still sucks? I recognize you really don’t like him and I realize the play we saw from him in New Jersey never actually happened. Clarkson is and can be a useful player, but the Leafs just gave him too much term and money. I would still take Clarkson on my team any day.

      • DipsyDoodler says:

        Like’s got nothing to do with it. Guy is being outscored by both individuals involved in the Diaz – Weise trade. I think there are goalies outscoring him this year.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          You have used him as an example so many times I just assumed there was a disdain for him. Clarkson didn’t forget how to play hockey, but has had a miserable start to his career as a Leaf. But far to early to now write him off as a player that will be outscored by Goalies.

      • Strummer says:

        Who’s to say he would have sucked this bad with the Habs or any other team but the Leafs? Getting suspended for the first 10 games and never really getting on track was his undoing. That may not have happened in Montreal where he didn’t have to be the hometown hero and try to save the day.

        He would have been a good addition to the Habs who desperately need a power forward with scoring ability.

        As you say the contract and term he got from the Leafs was not reasonable, but I think the problem people have with the Habs management team is their reluctance to persue the cream of the UFA’s and we settle for Briere, especially as Bergevin advocated getting “bigger and tougher to play against”
        ______________________________________________________
        “It’s just an opinion- I could be wrong”

    • Mattyleg says:

      It’s at the centre of the Venn Diagram of Hockey Intelligence.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      I’m generally happy with Bergevin and have never called him a moron. His saving grace is the fact he hasn’t traded away any draft picks or young players for a quick fix.

      Clarkson was on pace for 25 goals last year if the season would have been 82 games and had 30 the year before. I was hoping we could sign him but never for $5 million and 6 years or whatever it ended up being.

    • D Mex says:

      Funniest David Clarkson moment vs Habs this season was hilited in an episode of 24 CH :
      Brandon Prust (miked) fought back the giggles while warning Clarkson that he didn’t really want to go against ” Georgie “, did he …

      ALWAYS Habs -
      D Mex

    • habstrinifan says:

      I didnt enter into the discussion re HABS acquiring him.. his ‘market’ value never impressed me as a good expense. But I did post after the first few weeks that he would turn out to be a good player for the Leafs. Looks likely not now.

  5. Forum Dog says:

    TSN/Dreger reporting that Robidas is available. Could be a bit of risk to take on a player that hasn’t played in almost 40 games, but he is a solid veteran D-man who usually posts a good +/- and is a RH shot. Would slot in well on that 2nd pairing and might not cost too much.

    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=445112

    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/teams/players/bio/?id=493

  6. Phil C says:

    Darren Dreger:

    “In light of the St. Louis Blues’ acquisition of goalie Ryan Miller, several of the Blues’ rivals in the Western Conference could make moves to keep pace with the team.”

    That’s right folks, they “could”…But wait! He has a source. An Edmonton Journal article also says these teams “could” make a move. So there’s your source. “Could” make a move. This means not only that they have the ability, but they may also have to desire to do something. Because they can. And they may want to.

    Thanks for the scoop.

  7. habsmandes says:

    I wish that all of those who constantly spout trade and playing negativity(always wanting to trade people) towards the team would go cheer for another team. I feel your bad comments are partly responsible for the bad years the Habs have had. An example of this is if you are treated negatively at work you will not respond positively, a person usually responds negatively. If you could go and cheer for another team you could sow negativity within that team and cause them to have bad years. Encourage the players just like you would wish to be encouraged when you work. Much better results will be achieved, or get another team.

    • Dust says:

      nothing that happens on this website or any other hab fan website or chatroom affect the team or it’s players at all. If they are losing or winning it has nothing to do with the attitude of people in chatrooms. we have no impact on how the players play on the ice

    • CynicalHabsfan says:

      You’re so right. Back in the glory years Montreal fans were known throughout the hockey world for our positive attitude. And you know the New York Yankees? Everybody accuses them of buying championships, but the real secret to their success is that their fans always support the team no matter what. They never boo their own players.

      C’mon, man. Being critical, even unfairly critical at times, is an essential element to Habs fandom. We have high expectations here. If you don’t like it maybe you should consider finding another team instead of telling others how to feel. There’s still plenty of room on the oilers’ bandwagon.

  8. Paz says:

    Someone tell me why San Jose has the 17th ranked power play.

    And, could we get Jason Demers in a multi player deal that sent Markov the other way?

    Demers is from Dorval, about 15 minute drive to Bell Center.

    Right handed shot, mobile, not big 6’1, but he’s 25 and he could slip right into our starting defence.

    I have not seen many Sharks games but Demers has good offensive skills and instincts, and he could play second wave power play.

    He makes 1,5 mil but I believe he will be a restricted free agent.

  9. 24 Cups says:

    Here are this morning’s GP adjusted standings with the percentage odds of each team making the playoffs. Carolina is now basically out of the running.

    Montreal – 75/95%
    Toronto – 72/65%
    Philadelphia – 70/62%
    Detroit – 70/61%
    NYR – 69/71%
    - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – -
    Washington – 68/29%
    Columbus – 67/51%
    Ottawa – 66/20%
    New Jersey – 65/41%

    The Habs play four games this week. If they cam grab 3 out of eight points, that would then give them 14 out of the last 20. At that point in time, we should truly have an idea where the team really stands.

    As for the trade deadline, I can’t see Montreal doing anything dramatic. They may want to bring in another forward who can play centre/wing (and win face-offs) if they feel Bournival and Parros won’t be getting ice time in the playoffs. Galchenyuk and Briere should add the necessary extra scoring for the post season.

  10. Mike D says:

    re: The Trade Deadline

    In my opinion, MB has to take either an all or (almost) nothing approach. If his plan is more along the lines of waiting for certain players to develop, then he does nothing or maybe makes 1 or 2 minor moves.

    IF (keyword) his plan is that changes are needed to turn this team into a real contender, then big moves need to be made. If he decides to trade Markov, then he also has to trade Gio, Briere, Bourque, maybe Moen – or at least TRY to move as many of those types of players – to load up on picks or prospects. For example, it wouldn’t make sense to move Markov but then keep Gio.

    Regardless of what MB does, this year’s trade deadline is an opportunity to do something significant with this team due to the players whose contracts are expiring, and those who have become expendable to a certain extent (Bourque, Briere, and somewhat Moen since Weise’s addition and White’s improved play).

    - Honestly yours
    Twitter: @de_benny

  11. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    If Chris Stewart was good, the Blues would have kept him., especially in that conference full of size. No thanks…

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Don’t worry he won’t be coming here. Habs will be quiet this week

      “Lets Go Canada”

    • Mike D says:

      I agree with you and many others who view Stewart as a talented player who is too prone to cold streaks or a lack of effort. Kind of like Bourque or our old friend AK46.

      That said, the Blues received Ott in return for Stewart and because both players are big, the loss of Stewart’s size that you’re citing is largely offset by Ott’s size. Yes I know, they are different players and have different skills, but from a size standpoint they are basically equal. I think Ott is a little smaller but he plays big and physical, more than Stewart does IMO.

      - Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

    • boing007 says:

      Maybe his style of play would fit better in the East?

      Richard R

  12. Kooch7800 says:

    I think the addition of Weise now has been ever so important. With Prust being on the shelf now quite regularly with upper body injuries I am glad they added a guy with speed who can play sound d and creates energy.

    Prust seems to always be playing hurt and that happens with the style he plays. Nice to add some depth there

    “Lets Go Canada”

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Callahan is going to be the same this upcoming summer. He will get a monster contract with term and be on the injured reserve list for a good part of that next contract. It would be awesome to have both Prust and Callahan, but agree, lots of injuries due to the fact they play so hard.

      • Kooch7800 says:

        I can’t believe they are talking 6 mill a year for Callahan. That is crazy money for a guy with has missed significant time this year and has only scored more than 50 points once

        I am really happy that we got Weise for Diaz. Looking like a steal at the moment

        -edited-

        “Lets Go Canada”

    • Mike D says:

      The addition of Weise, in conjunction with White’s improved play, makes Moen somewhat expendable if MB were so inclined to move him.

      Not sure it would be a great move for a team that is still considered small and because Moen’s defensive skills and friendly cap hit, but if MB can get a nice return for Moen, he now has the cushion to afford losing him.

      - Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

      • Kooch7800 says:

        I agree Mike and wouldn’t be surprised if Moen does get moved to someone looking to upgrade their bottom 6 for the playoffs.

        If we don’t move him I think that is ok as well as depth in the bottom 6 is never a bad thing and Moen can fill in for an injury on a shutdown line

        “Lets Go Canada”

  13. Mattyleg says:

    So people are saying that we should trade Gionta, reminding everyone how STUPID it was that we got no return for Koivu.

    Let’s have a look at what happens if we trade Gionta:

    We lose an experienced 2nd-line winger.

    We gain…?
    Well, certainly not an experienced 2nd-line winger. Not a young 2nd-line winger with potential either. A 3rd-liner (which we don’t need) and some picks? Picks from a team who sees themselves as having a chance to go far, which means an end-of-the-round pick.

    Hmm.

    Who do we have to replace Gionta if we trade him for picks and parts?
    Lebanc (wince)?

    As with Koivu, it would seem to make better sense to hang on to Gionta because his current return this season will exceed the value of what he can get us down the road.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • HabinBurlington says:

      The only reason I would hesitate to trade Gionta is the fact he is the Captain. As for what the return we get? I would be happy with a 2nd round pick.

      • Mike D says:

        Gio would fetch a 1st rounder for sure, me thinks. Lesser players have returned that much, and even with Gio’s decline in production (he’s scoring more of late tho), he’s still great defensively and on the PK. Leader, cup experience, etc. He gets us a 1st.

        Sure, it will be a 1st from a team that expect to challenge for the cup, but that doesn’t mean it will be 30th overall. It could be closer to 20 overall, AND it would allow MB the flexibility to package things and move up in the draft if he wished.

        - Honestly yours
        Twitter: @de_benny

      • CJ says:

        I absolutely agree. If he did not have the C on his sweater, he would be gone.

      • Mattyleg says:

        So if we get a 2nd round pick, Burly, who plays wing on the 2nd line, and picks up his responsibiliites?

        Or do we just go without, and fall through the standings?

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Assuming Bournival and Prust were healthy, I would perhaps hope Bournival could replace Gio with Galchenyuk and Plex. It would be a drop off, I am not condemning Gionta the player. I am a fan of his and have been a fan of his. I am merely looking at this situation from a realistic perspective. He is going to be a UFA, our team has more than enough “smallish” forwards and one of the ways the team can improve longterm is to slowly upgrade our size at these positions and hopefully not lose on skill.

          I don’t “want” to trade Gionta, there are significant ramnifications on and off the ice, but I think off the ice may even be bigger than on.

          If someone offered a 1st round pick, I think I would jump at it. A 2nd round pick and it becomes a difficult decision. Anything less is a non starter. Indeed he is one of our most responsible forwards, but he also has been fragile the last couple seasons. He has looked better since the Olympic break, but he is not even close to the same Gionta we acquired as a UFA.

          It would be prudent for MB to consider trading him, but I can indeed see why he wouldn’t.

          • Mattyleg says:

            Bournival and Prust aren’t healthy, though.

            I’m not trying to be difficult, but at this point, trading someone you aren’t certain about being able to replace (who isn’t a 3rd/4th liner that you could fill with Blunden or whoever) at this point in the season, considering our position, is far too risky, in my mind.

            Can you imagine what would happen if Gio went for a pick, and we picked up a couple of injuries (or Bourni or Prust never got back to 100%) and we fell out of the playoff race? Bergevin would be roasted over a slow fire by everyone in the media, on here, and in the Head Office.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • HabinBurlington says:

            That is why MB is the GM. Can you imagine this summer when Gionta isn’t re-signed by the Habs and people talk about how we got nothing for Gionta and imagine if this is after team loses in first round and Gionta hadn’t scored a goal in that series. Bergevin would be roasted over a slow fire by everyone in the media, on here, and in the Head Office.

          • Mattyleg says:

            Edit not working.
            Wanted to add that a First Round pick is always cause for thought, for sure.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • Mattyleg says:

            Haha!

            True dat.

            Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • 24 Cups says:

      Not re-signing Koivu had even greater implications than just getting ‘nothing’ in return. It indirectly cost the team McDonagh and Higgins.

      • Mattyleg says:

        Higgins had taken the Snow Road out of Montreal, and was useless to us here.

        McDonagh, I don’t see the Koivu link.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • Mike D says:

          I think Steve’s line of thinking is that because BG decided that Gomez would be Koivu’s replacement as #1 C, he ended up giving Higgins and McDonagh to NYR for Gomez. If BG had kept Koivu then those two players wouldn’t have been exchanged since the Gomez trade wouldn’t have happened.

          - Honestly yours
          Twitter: @de_benny

  14. Sportfan says:

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  15. Maksimir says:

    For all the Chris Stewart talk.. here’s another question.. if he is such a prized big winger, why have both Colorado & St. Louis now given up on him?

    • adamkennelly says:

      Forget Chirs Stewart – for the exact reasons you state. unless we are swapping Bourque for him.

      • Will Longlade says:

        I agree. If Eller is moved for Stewart, the Habs will end up regretting that move dearly. Eller will thrive under Ted Nolan’s tutelage, while Les Canadiens will add another underperforming, enigmatic winger who has failed to stick with his last two teams. I wonder why? Habs are weak up the middle. Why trade your grittiest centre?

  16. kalevine says:

    I haven’t caught much of the last few games, but it’s great to see them scoring some goals! What I did catch in the Pitts game was the shorthanded goal on the Subban gaffe IMMEDIATELY followed by Emelin’s PP goal. This is what I like to see – instead of getting dejected and folding like an accordion, they came right back and got the equalizer. Looks like they did that several times against the Pens

  17. Marc10 says:

    Well it’s crazy late here in Oz. I’m off to bed! Thanks for the friendly hockey chin wag homies.

    Here’s hoping we win in LA and sign Markov and Subban post game.

    Heck, I’ll settle for a win… We have until the warm up in Anaheim to lock guys down or ship them out.

    Go Habs Go!

  18. Psycho29 says:

    How many points will the Habs get on this trip? I say 4/8.

    Should Markov be signed? For how long? Should he be traded?
    I think I need to hear what Scotchland thinks before I decide.

  19. adamkennelly says:

    for all who want Markov signed – are we willing to go 4 years? or is the cut-off 3?

    He’ll get 4 for over $20M on open market.

  20. Mats Naslund says:

    I wonder if MB is moved to try to add Chris Stewart now that Buffalo is in possession of him and would likely move him for picks or prospects. Not a typical rental in that he’s still relatively young and under contract for one more season. MTL could get a lot bigger up front pretty quick with one move.

    • third generation haber says:

      Stewart for Markov???

      If it happened quickly enough, Buffalo could trade him to a contender. Sounds crazy, but habs are (likely) seeking a scoring prospect in a Markov trade, while Buffalo could be open to a player at any position or draft picks since their rebuild is just getting started. Would be much easier for Buffalo to deal Markov to the west than it may be for us.

      j.p. murray

    • Maksimir says:

      The book on Stewart is that he takes a lot of nights off disappearing for streaks… and doesn’t always or consistently use his size…

      Why does everyone want a Rene Bourque 2.0?

      • Strummer says:

        Good point considering St Louis was willing to move him when they are poised to have a significant playoff run.

        ______________________________________________________
        “It’s just an opinion- I could be wrong”

  21. mfDx says:

    I love Markov. Markov loves Mtl. If he wants to stay he should recognize that he spent 2+ years here riding a stationary bike at $4 mil a year and offer a discount for his services.
    3yrs. $13mil. Everybody’s happy

    Sent from my CHphone

    • Cal says:

      He can get $6 on the market. His last deal was at the same money as his previous deal. From 2007- 2011 he was a bargain. He’s already done the discount thing.

      • Commandant says:

        He also got paid by an insurance company, not the Montreal Canadiens during the time he was injured. That and the fact he can get the money on the open market, his past payments are irrelevant here.

        Go Habs Go!

        http://lastwordonsports.com/

      • theflukester says:

        Good, then let him get it on the free market. We don’t need him and we can use the money to better this team. He’s slow, makes mistakes and gets caught and costs us goals. He’s not our best defence man. He’s certainly not worth $6mil with busted up knees that will go at anytime. Make a package deal and throw Gorges in with him.

        Bergevin is supposed to be here and make a difference. DO YOUR JOB BERGEVIN. To me you’re nothing but another puppet. Another trade deadline comes and passes and either nobody wants our trash or he’s not doing a very good job of selling.

        Play every game as if it is your last one. Guy Lafleur

        • Commandant says:

          Trade him and Gorges? Our #2 and #3 defencemen? For a team currently sitting with home ice advantage in the first round and no one to replace them.

          Thats crazy.

          Like any defenceman Markov makes mistakes, however he provides far more good plays than bad ones, and the stats bear this out. No one on the team or in the system is ready to take over as the #2 on this team. Not today and not next season.

          Go Habs Go!

          http://lastwordonsports.com/

          • Cal says:

            That’s the point the advocates for trading Markov miss. They’d rather play the kids, as they say. I’m sure Price would love playing behind a D corps like that. It’s tough enough for him as it is right now without making the situation in front of him worse.

          • Commandant says:

            Exactly Cal.

            The Kids may be NHL ready, and yes, I do believe Tinordi and Beaulieu are NHL ready.

            However there is a big difference between being ready to break into the NHL full time, and assuming 25 minutes a game against the top players in the league.

            Tinordi and Beaulieu should both be on the team next year (and can be in place of Murray, Bouillion), but they shouldn’t be thrown to the wolves either.

            Gorges – Subban
            Markov – Tinordi
            Beaulieu – Emelin

            Would be a good lineup next year. Just add an experienced #7.

            Markov also is good to have around to teach the young kids. Subban learned defensively from Hal Gill, and took that “next step” and really exploded offensively when Markov was healthy and able to teach him. Subban’s first two seasons, Markov and him were rarely on the team at the same time.

            Go Habs Go!
            http://lastwordonsports.com/

          • theflukester says:

            Wish I could agree with you but I don’t. 6 million+ for an old guy that has bad knees that will go again and cost us cap space. We have a lot of depth at defence even if you don’t see it with the neanderthal we have as a coach we could easily survive without him. Gorges. He’s nothing but ordinary and in my opinion his play has gone downhill the last couple of years. Aside from that one big rush we had in the playoffs a few years ago he’s been nothing but average. A shot blocker is all that comes to mind when I think of Gorges.

            Play every game as if it is your last one. Guy Lafleur

          • Commandant says:

            With the salary cap rising…. $ 6 million is not as much as it was three years ago. Thats what its gonna cost to get a replacement for markov, if you can even lure one in free agency.

            As for “his knees are gonna go again” its paranoia.

            After two full calendar years without missing a game, Markov’s knees have proven durable. He’s no more injury prone than any other NHLer.

            Go Habs Go!

            http://lastwordonsports.com/

      • mfDx says:

        Hopefully, a loyalist will realize that a PK and a Price at $10 mil. A Markov at $6mil and 14 Michael Blundens won’t get you a Stanley Cup ring.

        Sent from my CHphone

    • third generation haber says:

      I love Markov too, but I love the cup even more. We need to bite the bullet and trade this guy so that we have a chance in a few years.

      j.p. murray

      • Cal says:

        What is this vague “have a chance in a few years” thing everyone is going on about? Is that when we’ll have all young D getting the minutes and Price will be behind an inexperienced crew? There aren’t any forwards in Hamilton that will make a difference. Collberg, de la Rose, McCarron and others are a long way from making the Habs contenders, even if the Habs keep Patches, PK, Gally, Chucky, Price, Tinordi and Beaulieu.

        The team right now is 3rd in the East- if they were 10th or worse, I’d agree that they should be selling, but they aren’t.

  22. habsonly says:

    Good morning all,
    Regarding the endless banter about trading Markov, at work this morning I changed my Habs calender to March and guess what..its is Markov, in the blue blanc et rouge, and he is sure looks good in a habs uni!
    Must be a sign!

  23. Sportfan says:

    How many points can the Habs muster from this road trip? Also will Price play any of these games?

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
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    • HabinBurlington says:

      I have put in a call to Nostradamus, as soon as I get a response, I will get you the answers you are looking for.

      • Cal says:

        Aw c’mon Burly, just mention one of his wacked out quatrains that vaguely mention something or other. If it’s good enough for the believers, it’ll be good enough for us! ;)

        • Luke says:

          Oh, it’s so obvious:

          After that five will not put out the flock,
          A fugitive for Penelon he will turn loose:
          To murmur falsely then help to come,
          The chief will then abandon the siege.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            So 5 points on the road trip and Price plays in two games then?

          • Cal says:

            See, Burly? It’s easy-peezy!
            Good one, Luke. :D

          • Luke says:

            The Five? The next five games, obviously. LA/ANA/PHX/SJ then home vs BOS. We’ll be in good standing (“not put out”) after them.

            PK’s going to be a big part of it. For he is MT’s fugitive turned loose.

            Markov isn’t getting dealt, Oh there’ll be talk about it. Maybe something close… but he’ll be chipping in (“come to help”).

            Chief will abandon the siege? Is that a Gionta trade or a MT firing. I’ll let you decide.

    • jimmy shaker says:

      5 would be good, 6 would be great, 7 would be awesome and 8 would be unimaginable. Also, budashe gets the crease tonight and wednesday, and then Price should be ready to go after 10 days off, thursday. That’s how I C it!

      Shaker out!

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      The realist/pessimist part of me is thinking it could be zero.

  24. DipsyDoodler says:

    In other sports news, you can bet on the outcome of the Oscar Pistorius trial.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/africa/oscar-pistorius-paddy-power-prompts-outrage-by-offering-money-back-if-he-walks-bets-on-murder-case-9163814.html

    I don’t know what’s more tasteless, offering the bet, or using “he walks” as a figure of speech for a not guilty verdict.

  25. AliHaba says:

    @CJ Finally found that info. Looks like White may be the only one to play tonight though.

  26. Marc10 says:

    Berezin says both parties want Markov to stay in MTL:

    http://www.lapresse.ca/sports/hockey/201403/03/01-4744023-andrei-markov-restera-a-montreal-assure-son-agent.php

    Just a question of term. My bet is Andrei gets a two year contract at $6M per year. Might get 3, but I would think that’s one year too many.

    • Sportfan says:

      Maybe that will stop the Markov trade rumors

      Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
      http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

      • third generation haber says:

        Actually, it was Markov who mentioned March 5th when asked about his contract negotiations. He has till July 1 to get a deal signed, so why mention March 5th? I suspect it’s because he feels he will be moved if a deal doesn’t get done now.

        j.p. murray

    • Paz says:

      Street got 4 yrs from Philly at exactly the same age, and Markov is better.

      • Paz says:

        I have said 2 years is fine but why would Markov leave his 4th year and 6 million on the table?

        • HabinBurlington says:

          What if Markov is truly grateful to the organization, what if his version of a home town discount is term? It is possible, rare, but possible.

      • Marc10 says:

        I would hope Markov learns the great lesson that Hammer and Stephane Quintal learned the hard way. The best place to play is Montreal and there’s no point in taking more cash to go elsewhere unless there’s a chance at a cup involved.

        Odds are a cup contender doesn’t give you anymore than what the Habs are offering and that’s why he’ll stay. And you know what… he’ll likely play 4 more years for the Habs. It will just be one year at a time past year 2 (or year 3 if we pay one year too many…)

        Marleau and Thornton took plenty less than what was available on the open market – granted they are in the window to win a cup… I hope Markov gets a cup in Montreal; where he belongs.

        • Paz says:

          “The best place to play is Montreal”, is kind of a myth that ended when Roy left.

          I do not believe that’s the way players think these days.

          • Maritime Ronn says:

            Best place to play….when you win, and do not crave anonymity

          • Marc10 says:

            I guess it depends on your personal taste. When you’re part of the furniture like Markov is… It’s your team and your reality so it’s the best.

            Lots of ex-Habs have said their time in Montreal was the best. Kovalev would probably be the last one and he won a cup with an original six. Jagr wants to play here… I suspect there are quite a few players throughout the League that would jump at the chance and for who the myth lives on.

            The myth is only going to get bigger when this team wins big under Price with Subbidoo, Chucky, Max and co. It’s going to be off the charts awesome and they’ll be lining up. Markov will hopefully be there too.

  27. BJ says:

    Mr. Boone or webmaster. Is it possible to have next to each comment a number that would correspond from the start of a new blog to that comment? Sometimes it might offer a reference point for a reply that gets burried way down the chain?

  28. Maritime Ronn says:

    @DarrenDreger:
    Stars D-man Stephane Robidas may be injured, but he’s still attracting trade interest. Could be back mid-March.
    ———-
    Is anybody else thinking what I’m thinking……??

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Interesting Ronn. I thought those players injured could not be moved. I remember that was an issue with Moen once.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        If both sides are completely aware of the medical risks a trade can still occur, but essentially the team picking him up is taking the risk. Normally trades are conditional upon passing a physical, in a case like this the injury would be completely discussed and essentially the buying team would waive the physical as it relates to the specific injury.

    • Phil C says:

      Right handed veteran, can play big minutes -good.
      Small, coming back from a broken leg – bad

      I guess if they could get him for cheap. I would rather a hockey deal for a defenseman that would help the team beyond this season, but not a bad depth deal if his leg is ready. That would be pretty much spell the end of Bouillon.

  29. Storm Man says:

    I still think if and it’s a big if that MB wants to hit one out of the park he trades AM79. The buzz about what teams are in the mix and the bidding war would be nuts.

    • boonie says:

      MB should always want to hit one out of the park. If he were trying to move AM79, there would be more buzz now.

      Worse than moving or NOT moving Markov, would be MB moving him and hearing another GM say, “I didn’t think they would really trade Markov, we would have been involved in that situation”.

      Not to rekindle Halak trade issues, but I hated hearing that Halak moved and others would have given us more (potentially).

      If you move someone like Markov you either do it with (A) class and move him to a winner so he can have a Cup; or (B) to maximize the organization’s value. (A) is reserved for players like Iggy and RAY Bourque. Markov is a touch below that level. So, if you go with (B) you better KNOW that you got all you could.

      • Cal says:

        GMs who come out with comments like that (after the fact) are unprofessional boobs, like Lawton was when he tried to extort more from Gainey by naming names to the media.

  30. Storm Man says:

    The dollar would have to be around 60 cents for money bags DT to even worry about the what is going in with the Jets. How much of the Jets does your friend own? I’m sure he has as much say what goes on with the Jets as I do with the Habs.

    • boonie says:

      I lived in Winnipeg in the early 90s around the time the Jets left. The old arena averaged 9000-10,000 fans and seats could be had cheap (like less than $10).

      A 60 cent dollar and fan malaise after years of playoff under-performance were too much. They had a $6 million payroll and we’re attracting the fewest fans in the league next to the Isles for multiple years.

      They goosed their payroll to stratospheric ($38m if memory serves, but don’t quote me) levels for Tkachuk and Housely. It still didn’t work.

      Winnipeg fans love hockey, but the Peg is a small market. TV rights, radio rights and the like are scant. Their are relatively few big corporate sponsors. Seats don’t cost what they do in Montreal or Toronto. HNIC revenues are split 8 ways. The cap floor is appreciably north of $6m. Heck, it’s more than $38m.

      Even with new NHL TV revenue and revenue sharing, the Jets revenue haven’t grow as much as the team’s payroll has and will relative to the mid-90s. The Jets (while technically a Canadian team) function much more like a team in a mid-sized American NHL city — Columbus, Nashville, etc.

      Had a NHL caliber rink been ready in Quebec City when the Thrashers needed a landing spot, the Nords would have been a better long term bet. Yes, it’s similarly small, but there are more corporate sponsors, it has a uniquely French Canadian fan base, a natural rival that ensures multiple home sellouts at premium prices even in down years, and more corporate sponsors likely willing to support than team for a myriad issues than GWL in Winnipeg.

      Sorry for the rant. I know it’s a little off topic, but this issue is a little near and dear.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Owns none, just works very involved with the financial operations of the entire organization. David Thomson when he announced his partnership with True North, made it abundantly clear that he would not be dumping in money to a team losing money. He loves hockey, but this is also an investment. A 60cent dollar would absolutely mean the relocation of that team.

  31. JUST ME says:

    I can relate to guys and girls like us writing their christmas wish for trade deadline and hoping every year that something significant happens.
    What i have a bit more difficulties dealing with are those experts that have an obscure radio show on satellite radio that do the same thing as we do quite often from their home too and are interviewed on other radio stations and are considered as reliable sources when actually they are anything but close to the team …

    So that makes me an expert too i guess but i do not see anything remotely significant happening. Is it because this is what i am used to ? I suppose so cause we have dead wood, too many players on the roster, many many players that will not see their deals renewed in MTL and a lot of those in Hamilton also but i still can`t feel it…

  32. AliHaba says:

    Anyone hear who didn’t make the roadtrip? White, Prust, Bournival?

  33. Storm Man says:

    Lol guy do you know who owns the Jets lol.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      @Storm man, I’m guessing your “lol” was directed at my Jets comment. Yes more than aware who owns the Jets, also I am more than aware of the fact that the Jets ownership group has zero intention of running a team long term that is not profitable.

      Friend of mine is a pretty important member of True North in their finance dept., think I’ll go with his words over yours.

    • CJ says:

      David Thomson.

    • boonie says:

      I know a lot of rich guys that hate losing money.

  34. Storm Man says:

    Maybe MB has been taking magic 101 over the weekend and pulls out a rabbit on Wednesday

  35. Habfan10912 says:

    I guess its pretty safe to assume that Drewskie’s jersey won’t be ganging from the banners at the Bell Centre anytime soon.

  36. Habfan10912 says:

    Good morning friends. Here’s what I think is likely to happen between now and the deadline.

    Markov signs an extension.
    One of Gionta, Moen, or Louie L is moved.
    Bergevin will try like heck to move Bourque but won’t find many takers.

    I don’t see how this team can make any major moves so it’ll be some more tweeking, a playoff position and a round or two in the playoffs.

    I do think at some point soon we’ll see Tinordi and Nathan B in thew lineup. As they gain experience and improve, so will the fortunes of the team.

    CHeers.

    • Cal says:

      Hey Jim. I don’t think there will be any moves beside the blockbuster of Price and Gionta for Crawford and Sharp and 2 1st round picks in 2015 and 2016. ;)

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Agree that minor moves if anything will be the case. Moen moving may only happen if the team is confident Prust will return and be relatively healthy. With Prust on the shelf presently, not sure Moen is expendable.

    • boonie says:

      I’d be disappointed by not surprised.

      Try to explain this apparent inconsistency. We don’t move Markov because “we’re third in the east” and “anything can happen in the playoffs” and yet we would move “playoff guys” like Gionta and Moen…?

      • Cal says:

        Don’t expect any moves at all by the Habs. MB said it last year, talking about how the prices were just too high to do a deal. GMs with failing teams keep trying for home run deals instead of plugging the holes on their roster until the kids in the system develop. Then, there are the GMs of contenders looking for depth that don’t want to depart with any roster players this close to the playoffs. Habs fall sort of in between the two groups. Making the playoffs is likely, but not doing anything during them is likely, too.

        • boonie says:

          I was a bond trader decades ago so my sensibilities, nerves and hearing are mostly shot. If the prices are “too high” you sell.

          When I started my boss told me “if the market ain’t going up, it’s going down.”. I was a punk 25 year old kid and immediately thought — wow, what a remarkably obvious thing to say. I’d be taking this guy’s job in a few weeks.

          It took me multiple years to appreciate the wisdom of that nugget and I am constantly amazed how well it applies to other situations. Like the NHL trade deadline.

          If you’re not a buyer (i.e. an elite team making a Cup run) you should be a seller (i.e. US). There are few in-betweens in life. Markets don’t stagnate. Middle of the pack teams do.

          P.S. I didn’t take his job. He’s running the place now.

          • Cal says:

            What I meant about the “in between” comment is that here the Habs are, 3rd in the conference, and many are calling for moving Markov and the “dead wood”. I don’t see the Habs trading away their #2 DMan because the drop off in talent after him is significant (kind of like Blue Monday in ’86- remember that, when all you could hear on the trading floor were stock prices dropping?) No one wants players like Bourque and Moen as roster players; they would want them for depth and thus would not pay much for them.
            To be a seller, the club has to have lost faith in the stars of the team. I don’t see MB moving anything, unless it’s very minor.
            http://calshabsongparodies.weebly.com

  37. Sportfan says:

    Anyone else hoping all the trades happen soon so TSN has nothing to do for the whole day. Don’t get me wrong I love TSN and most of their coverage, but I hate trade deadline all day crap. start at 1 or 12 not 9.

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    • Cal says:

      And Quebec City. Then, a minor shuffle of Columbus going back to the west.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Yup, however, the Canadian dollar is really the key. If the dollar does indeed go back down to the 80cent level there can suddenly be issues for teams like the Jets, Senators and wouldn’t be good for a new team in Quebec City.

        Also there is much speculation that the Cap will skyrocket the next couple season, this may not be the case with a lower Cdn. dollar. I believe Cdn. teams are providing 35% of the overall revenues and with a lower dollar this revenue is quickly lowered.

    • CJ says:

      Good morning Jim. Call me crazy, but I would love to see the NHL return to Hartford. My first NHL memories were the Habs and Whalers in the playoffs. Maybe I’m entirely too nostalgic, but the old Adams division was terrific.

      • Habfan10912 says:

        Morning CJ! I would love a team in Hartford. It’s about 90 minutes from my house and I loved watching games there. Shopping, drinks and dinner at the Mall there and walk right into the arena. Too many Bruin fans in the area for my taste though. :)

  38. CJ says:

    Good morning folks! Sun is up and, if you can look past the fact that it’s minus 25, it should be a beautiful day.

    Game day. Going to be a late night. Hopefully it’s a decent game. Interesting to see if there are lineup changes. This is going to be a great test. I thought that we looked good but not great the past two games, after looking very rusty against Detroit. Effort, up and down the lineup needs to be there, and equally important is execution. The breakdowns, poor zone coverage, pinches, etc., will need to be cleared up or this road trip won’t go well. The east is still very tight so getting a few points this week will be critical.

    Less then 60 hours now to trade deadline. I thought Friday’s blockbuster might prompt reactionary moves, but it seems that everyone is in a holding pattern, waiting to the very end.

    Lastly, certainly hoping for encouraging news regarding Tim Bozon. I’ll try and search for updates and will share any information I come across later this morning.

    Have a great day everyone! Cheers, CJ

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Good morning there, CJ

      Tough, strange, and hard to predict road trip coming.

      Actually, the Habs have done well against the West this year.
      Overall 12-9-1
      vs Central: 6-5-1
      vs Pacific: 6-4-0
      The flip side of the coin is that both LA and SJ shut out the Habs on home ice earlier this year.
      4 points out of 8 would be great, yet how many times have the Habs pleasantly surprised this year.

      • CJ says:

        They have exceeded my expectations. Four points this week would be huge. I think the Phoenix game is very winnable, while the other three give me pause for concern.

        I’m keeping an open mind heading into action this evening. Though I’m leaning toward a 1-3 week, as noted, this team has proven anything can happen. I will be watching, win or lose. Cheers, CJ

        • Maritime Ronn says:

          Habs can play a ‘road game’ and no need to entertain the Bell Centre.
          They’ll probably try their best to play for regulation ties and hope for the best in OT or SO.

  39. mount royal says:

    Tampa bay lost last night and they gained no ground on the Habs. I wonder whether, like here on HIO, their fans are demanding today that the coach be fired and that half the team needs to be traded, preferably for Sidney Crosby.

    • Marc10 says:

      They have a great coach and thanks to their fleecing of our AHL team management, they have a superb ‘capoligist’ in Julien Brisebois who helped them craft a great farm system.

      As good as Guy Boucher is, their coach now is another ‘player’s coach’ guy who is getting a lot out of his young guns.

      I wouldn’t want to play them come the post season. They match up well against us and I suspect their giant freak of a goalie is going to stand on his head. I’d rather we cut our teeth on Boston first. We always play our best against the Black and Puke Yellow.

      • Phil C says:

        I don’t like the Tampa matchup either. Or Detroit for that matter.

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Wasn’t Brisebois the same guy that was responsible for not notifying the NHL offices and the Habs played an ineligible player back in 2009?
        As for capologists, they are nothing more than a combo of legal and accounting guys that understand the details of the CBA and counsel GMs as to repercussions of trades/contracts.
        They can be bought from an endless pool, while real hockey guys are hard to find

        • Marc10 says:

          I don’t recall that particular instance. I just remember Julien assembling the AHL Team that ended up winning the Calder Cup and then moving on to TB and watching him and the current coach break all kinds of AHL records. He also brought his whole gang with him and that probably set us back another couple of years.

          By most accounts he’s a very smart guy who will one day run his own team in the NHL. Time will tell if he’s average, but I wouldn’t bet against him.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Fans? What fans?

  40. I wonder if GM’s right now are looking at Ryan Kelser and saying, oh man look at those numbers, sure he’s having an average season but with my guys he could score 40 or more goals next year and maybe help win the cup this year.

    But here’s the deal, which side of 29 is he on? When you trade for Kelser do the Sedins who pretty much got him those points come with him?

    Kelser on a stacked USA team did what in the Olympics?

    I like the guy on paper, but when you give up a ton for him, and you don’t win the cup, in two years he’s looking for another payday.

    His agent must be a smart man, “hey Ryan, we need to cash in on your seasons four years ago”

    Ryan- I’m sorry Vancouver, my I leave now? Dear new team, before I sign I would like a contracted extention at 6 year/43 million please.

    So I say no to Kelser. Vancouver would want a 1st, Prospect, and roster player. That’s crazy, I’d rather go two rounds in the playoffs with Gionta than give up players for a maybe chance.

    Not to mention NTC, and 5mil/yr contract that Vancouver would be crazy to trade. 5 million! NOICE!

    That’s Gold Baby!

    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    http://www.Sholi2000.com
    Custom Sports Figures
    Congrats Carey Price and PK Subban, Montreal’s Gold Medal Members!

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      How did the Sedins get him the points? And how is he cashing in by moving to a new team?

      But yes his age is a concern.

      The one thing about this trade that is surprising is how rare it is for players to demand to be traded. Happens a lot in other sports but you don’t hear about it much in the NHL.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      hi shane

      Kesler would cost the Habs a fortune even if he ever wanted the Habs to be a landing spot which appears to be doubtful.

      Kesler turns 30 next summer.
      If he can stay away from injuries he is a +25 goal man and plays a heart and soul game.

      As for a new contract, a player can only sign an extension in the last year of his present contract.
      His contract ends in summer 2016, meaning a new contract could only be signed starting in the summer July 2015.

      As for the ” Sedins who pretty much got him those points” I believe Kesler is his own man and only played with the Sedins on the PP and very rarely other times.
      His linemates this year for the most part have been Hansen and Higgins.

    • Marc10 says:

      Kesler has benefitted from slotting in as the number 2 center for the Nucks. He’s also a warrior whose style has taken its toll (see Brandon Prust and Ryan Callahan as other skating wounded…)

      I wouldn’t pay the price that’s being asked as he’s on a quick path to Brendan Morrow Land, but I get why Vancouver is trying to get everything they can get while he’s still healthy.

      Late additions before the playoffs are a gamble. Given the asking price, I’d opt for a marquee UFA like Vanek or Statsny if I was a contender as they’ll invariably come cheaper.

    • boonie says:

      Nailed it.

      This guys appears to be beyond his prime (notwithstanding a single resurgent season a la Vinny La C).

      I think he sees Vancouver as the sinking ship it is. The Canucks are the next Flames. They should be shedding assets like crazy instead of clinging to the belief that their core can make one more run.

    • Phil C says:

      Kesler may be on the downslope of his career, but you would love him on the Habs. He plays the game with some snarl and can be dominant at times. I think he was on his way to the Conn Smythe in 2011 before he injured his hip and became ineffective. He was a beast in the Nashville series that year.

      Unfortunately, I don’t think the Habs could afford him.

      • I don’t want the Habs to afford him. I like the look of the habs, just need one key player, and of course a more aggressive coach who understands when I a player is hot in a game to play the guts out of him.

        Shane Oliver
        Twitter @Sholi2000
        http://www.Sholi2000.com
        Custom Sports Figures
        Congrats Carey Price and PK Subban, Montreal’s Gold Medal Members!

  41. Habfan17 says:

    If I am not mistaken, Bergevin made his deals before the rush of the deadline. Hopefully we will have some trades between now and Wednesday to discuss.

    I guess it may be different if his talks with Markov go down to the wire.

    Speaking of GM’s, I like Tim Murray’s approach. I won’t beg people to be here and I won’t get stuck on sentimentality. I have a team to build. Of course, I paraphrased a bit, but that was the gist of what he said!

    Habfan17

    • I see one player moving, Gionta, and that may not happen too.

      Minor tweaks is all that will happen, Bergevin will not go all in, and that’s fine by me.

      But wow if Markov moves, imagine the return, I mean teams last year were giving up 1st rounders for next to nothing.

      Shane Oliver
      Twitter @Sholi2000
      http://www.Sholi2000.com
      Custom Sports Figures
      Congrats Carey Price and PK Subban, Montreal’s Gold Medal Members!

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Hard to see Gionta being moved.
        There is a depth/experience issue on the Habs right side.
        Also, trading your Captain when the team is in 3rd place in the East may not be the right message.
        When Iginla was traded last year, the Flames were at the bottom going nowhere.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Hi 17

      Tim Murray has a much easier job than Bergevin.

      He has the worst team in the NHL with pending UFAs that also want out in what appears to be a buyer’s market.
      Bergevin has a playoff team where most probably ownership, the media, and majority of the fans want playoff hockey.

      Murray’s job becomes much more difficult this summer and for next year.

      Ih he continues the fire sale ( Moulson-Stewart-Myers-Ehrhoff) it’s going to be interesting to see if he can put together a team that actually resembles an NHL team next year.
      If all of those 4 leave, the Sabres have only 7 players under NHL contracts for next year

      • boonie says:

        We had one of the worst teams in the league a couple of years ago. The guys who led us there are still here.

        We’re still debating if it’s ok to trade Markov and Gionta. Both in their 30s, on expiring contracts and (very much so in Brian’s case) likely on the descent side of their careers.

    • boonie says:

      Yep, no sentimentality. Up to including the President who hired him. At least they bottomed out and decided to do something about it.

      Many of the guys who played for us the season we bottomed out are still here. Most of the leaders who led us the season we bottomed out are still here.

      We’re still sentimental.

  42. rhino514 says:

    Nice article on Budaj.
    No knock on Price but he is better in shoot-outs. If there are indeed shoot-out specialists, and the rules allow it, I´m all for changing goalies in the SO. I don´t think it has to be taken as a lack of respect towards the starting goalie. Of course, it won´t happen.

    • Goalies hate that, play all game for a hard fought tie and then pulled. Coaches almost never do it. I think in Carey’s first year they did it to Huet, and it backfired. Makes the goalie look like crap, and the coach foolish! So yeah I could see Therrien doing it :lol:

      Shane Oliver
      Twitter @Sholi2000
      http://www.Sholi2000.com
      Custom Sports Figures
      Congrats Carey Price and PK Subban, Montreal’s Gold Medal Members!

  43. Habitant in Surrey says:

    Tim Bozon: meningitis

    Most people with viral meningitis usually start getting better within 3 days of feeling sick and recover within 2 weeks. But it is important to see your doctor if symptoms of meningitis develop so that he or she can rule out bacterial meningitis, which is more serious.

    With mild cases of viral meningitis, you may only need home treatment, including fluids to prevent dehydration and medicine to control pain and fever. If you do not get better or if symptoms get worse, you may need further testing to check for other causes of illness.

    Meningitis is usually caused by many different viruses and bacteria. So the best methods of preventing it varies. But by getting vaccinated and taking sensible precautions, you can greatly reduce your risk.

    Most healthy adults who have recovered from meningitis do not need follow-up care.

    • BJ says:

      Thanks for sharing your data. I would respectfully counter with this regarding vaccinations (they are not cut out to be what most of them claim).
      http://vaccinedangers.com/

      http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2004/05/12/vaccination-dangers.aspx

      • DipsyDoodler says:

        Don’t click on those links people!

        Don’t.

      • halifaxhab says:

        People like you are the reason for the sudden ressurgance of long thought to be dead diseases. Vaccines have nearly or have eraddicated many diseases. I bet you think Aliens have been visiting the earth for millenea and influincing our technology….or even better, the earth was seeded by Aliens to create lifeforms to be kidnapped and used in a Hunting Game.

        how about reading some actual articles by people who are real scientists instead of those nutjobs.

        http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2011/02/03/the-clueless-cite-the-ignorant/

        I love Barry Manilow .

        -Scotty Bowman

        • BJ says:

          Actually I do think thats how it happened (perhaps minus the hunting game). Its unfortunate that some people have no respect regarding others experiences or research. I guess for some its too much to think that anything outside what you hear on CNN and Fox is the Gospel or everything religion and conventional education feeds you is the only way. Enjoy the four corners of your box.

          • Mattyleg says:

            Vaccines are extremely good and useful, and anyone who thinks otherwise is not only putting themselves in danger, but society as a whole.

            Have a read of the book ‘Plague’ by Michael Bliss. It’s about the smallpox epidemic in Montreal in 1885, and how similar misinformation about the ‘dangers’ of vaccination resulted in 9,600 people contracting the disease, with 1/3 of them dying, and the remaining half being damaged for life (blinded, lame, etc). That doesn’t even count the many, many more who died in the surrounding regions.

            Before discussing vaccination, please take some time to educate yourself with the findings of real medical professionals, and not snake-oil dealers or conspiracy theorists.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • halifaxhab says:

            Conventional education? It’s called real, peer reviewed science. Not some quacks that get 80 homeopaths and chiropractors to sign a petition.

            Did you even read my link? I read yours….and laughed histerically. Mine is from actual immunologists and scientists, not conspiracy theorists that have ZERO credentials in the field.

            I have ZERO respect for half assed obviously biased research. And who the heck would watch CNN or Fox news unless they wanted a good laugh?

            Enjoy the four corners of your padded cell.

            I love Barry Manilow .

            -Scotty Bowman

  44. Lil Snapper says:

    Kesler would be a great pick-up, that being said there is no way we can get him!

  45. Sportfan says:

    DD and I dunno some other guy for Kesler do it MB!

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

    • third generation haber says:

      Why would they want him??? Could u imagine how useless he would be if Pacioretty didn’t play for the habs?

      To other posters, the players we want to get rid of (Bourque) are not wanted by other teams either.

      j.p. murray

      • JUST ME says:

        It might just be the other way around. How useless would Max be without D.D. In the past when D.D. was injured or unable to play wich by the way happened once in a blue moon, Max did not do much without him.

        I do not know if one can be traded without the other.

        • third generation haber says:

          Never thought about that!

          I do, however, think he’s little more than a 3rd line center who happens to get 1st line ice-time, PP time, and line-mates. He is sheltered to justify his contract and is holding back the team offensively.

          Chucky should be our first line center, flanked by Pacs and Gally.

          Teams don’t win in the playoffs with DD as their top center.

          j.p. murray

  46. ClutchNGrab says:

    Was watching TSN top 10 shootout moment. I almost forgot the 05-06 season, the Habs had to win against the Leafs to make the playoffs but weren’t able to. The next day, the Isles won their game in a shootout, knocking the Leafs out of the playoffs. It was the start of Toronto’s 7 straight years without a playoff appearance.

    Good stuff.

    EDIT: It was the 06-07 season, second year the Leafs didn’t make it to post season.

    • CH Marshall says:

      I still remember that very weekend. We took a buddy’s Leafs jersey and gave it a small roasting in the oven on Sunday morning.

    • Sportfan says:

      That end of the season had so much controversy, first off with Huet out for so long it was up to Halak to help us clinch and he was winnign us games, but the final two games they let Huet play instead of Halak who was playing hot. Against the Leafs there was a bunch of bs calls especially one on the Habs that involved that fat prick Wellwood who fell over “in pain” got up with the biggest grin and we lost. Bad memories haha

      Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
      http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  47. ffenliv says:

    After the win over Toronto, I was reading the post-game thread on hfboards. There’s some decent debate and discussion to be had there if you can tune out the crazies.

    Anyway, one Leafs fan was very upset at what he saw as the refs throwing the game to Montreal, and he said the following:

    In my 10 years on hfboards, I can proudly say that Montreal never won a game against Toronto without the help of the refs.

  48. Psycho29 says:

    Just saw this on Thats Hockey:

    the Canucks since January 1st:

    5-14-3
    GF/game: 1.73
    GA/game: 3.05
    PP: 12.3%

    If the Habs had a record like that, I think the hamsters at HI/O would have burnt out by now!

    • ffenliv says:

      Canucks fans are going pretty nuts. And, like here when things are bad, everyone and everything is being blamed. Underperforming players on big contracts, injuries, coaching, management. You name it.

  49. PoochHabs says:

    Blackhawks have acquired two draft picks from Florida for Brandon Pirri.

  50. WVHabsfan says:

    I have not given up on Rene either. But, he does make it hard not to do so

  51. CJ says:

    Just read a tweet from a WHL media source sending best wishes to Tim Bozon who is apparently in a Saskatoon hospital diagnosed with menengitis. I recall B asking if anyone knew the reason why he missed Friday’s game…..

    Goodness, that’s serious stuff. I hope the kid is ok. If anyone has any information, could you kindly link. Thanks in advance, CJ

  52. Un Canadien errant says:

    In honour of scrotchland, we should list our favourite homage/parody accounts. Off the top of my head, there are:

    1) Mike Bone
    2) Tomi
    3) HIO/Bot

  53. DipsyDoodler says:

    Don’t fret for our friends in Toronto. Their mayor is on American TV. They must be so proud.

  54. frozengolf says:

    Does anyone know what has happened to the “Catching The Torch” section on EOTP? I’m not a member there and don’t want to be, but enjoy that section.

    _________________________________________________________
    “We know that hockey is where we live, where we can best meet and overcome pain and wrong and death. Life is just a place where we spend time between games.”

  55. T-roy West says:

    Patches – Pleks – Bourque
    Stewart – Chucky – Gally
    Briere – Eller – T. Wilson
    Weiss – Bournival – Prust

    Subban – Gorges
    Beaulieu – Tinordi
    Kulikov – Emelin

    Just a thought. Maybe Gudbranson instead.

    • Timo says:

      Here is the blast from the past. How have you been, T?

      • T-roy West says:

        Not bad at all bud, how have you been? Did the flooding down south last summer damage any property of yours or did you come out of it unscathed? I don’t post many comments anymore because my three year old son takes up most of my time and the wife and work take up the rest but I am started to find a little time. How do you like the line combos? Notice DD is missing, lol. We have absolutely nobody in the system like Chris Stewart so we need to take a shot at him. Send Buffalo a 1st, 2nd and a prospect then trade Markov for Tom Wilson and a 1st. Then flip the first to Florida for Kulikov. This years draft is going to suck anyways so it is a good time to give up a first if you have to. In a couple of years just think about having MacCarron, Stewart, Crisp and Wilson in the line up.

        • Timo says:

          No man, none of my properties were impacted. Thanks for asking.

          Glad to hear you’re doing well and life’s keeping you busy. Kids are little buggers and do take up all of your time.

          Re line combos… I think it’s all pointless until Therrien’s gone. You can bring the entire team Canada roster to play for Habs and the result won’t be any better than with the current squad. I would have loved for Habs to land Stewart but Therrien is already struggling to manage on “personality” in Subban… imagine 2?

  56. Storm Man says:

    If AM79 wants 4 years see yah buddy but let’s hold him till the last hour and watch teams toss huge overpayment for a great Dman.

  57. DipsyDoodler says:

    I think I know who scrotchland is.

    Whether or not I’m right, I applaud him.

  58. Psycho29 says:

    I read the post below from “our friend”; and I’ll repost what I wrote earlier today:

    @ Crotch-land
    The Habs are 9-1-2 over the past 10 games.
    34-21-7; 2nd in the division, 3rd in the conference, 4 points out of second.
    “Therian” as you called him is 63-35-12 (138 pts) in two seasons.
    I get the feeling you would have wanted Bowman’s head for losing 8 games in 1976-77.
    And as far as this being the “worst team ever”….maybe take a look at the 1999-2001 teams again…

    • HabinBurlington says:

      It is like an auto programmed rant, I suspect no reason to even read the posts. His/Her extremes are way too extreme to be worthy of a response.

      Hope you are well bud, just found I got tix for the Leafs vs. Habs game March 22nd, so pumped to be able to see that game.

      CHeers Psycho!

      • Psycho29 says:

        I guess….just gets maddening reading the same crap over and over.

        I’m good Burly, and you? Enjoying the habs ride, even if it’s bumpy at times! Lucky you, Leafs and Habs!!!!

    • HabFan in Edmonton says:

      Don’t waste your time on his posts. I have been a Hab fan for almost 50 years, this team is a long ways from being the worst team I have seen. (ie. Carey Price is a big improvement over Andre “Red Light” Racicot”)

    • third generation haber says:

      I have no idea what that guy wrote, and I would argue that this is certainly not the worst habs team ever.

      I would argue that we are not built for the playoffs, so all the regular season success we muster will mean nothing when we get bounced early and draft late.

      j.p. murray

  59. Cape Breton says:

    The Great Budaj has let in 8 goals in two games for a gaa of 4. Yep, he won both, nonetheless, I have very little faith in the small man. EIGHT GOALS AGAINST IN TWO GAMES !!!!!!!!! And 10 in 3.

    • johnnylarue says:

      But globally he’s doing just fine. Carey turned into a bit of sieve in December/January as well.

      Budaj is doing exactly what’s expected of a backup goalie: playing well enough for his team to win games in #31′s absence.

      • Cape Breton says:

        Seems to me that most of the time habs score more often when Budaj is in as opposed to when Pricey plays. Maybe they realize that offence is more important minus Price.

      • L Elle says:

        Price may have let in a lot of goals during that period, but they were Grade A scoring chances, all of them. He was being bombarded with 30-40 shots a game, plus, no goal support. It’s not like the opponent winning 5-4, with Price giving up 2 softies. It was more like 5-0.

        Even though our team won, better goaltending would have prevented both teams from getting the loser point which could be huge at the end of the season.

        I agree with your last sentence though. :)

    • JUST ME says:

      Congratulations ! We usually give the oscar to Scotchland but today your comment deserves the title of easiest and cheapest of all. Sleep tight !

    • BriPro says:

      Tuuka Rask has let in 10 goals in 3 games. 1 point in their first 2 games since returning.
      Bernier? 9 goals in 2 games. 2 points.
      Steve Mason (Flyers) has allowed 15 goals in 3 games. 4 points.

      Sooo many better no 1 goalies than our no. 2.

      I would suggest, looking at some of the box scores, goaltending hasn’t always been effective, but as long as the team racks up the wins, who’s complaining? Except for you, of course.

      • Cape Breton says:

        I would not want to have to start a playoff series with Budaj between the pipes.

        • CJ says:

          Neither would I. I mean I like Budaj the backup, and would be comfortable with him playing 20 games during the regular season, but we won the last two games in spite of him, not because of him.

          Everyone, Budaj through Murray is going to need to be on their toes during this west coast swing. The Pens and Leafs were very sloppy. I give the full team full marks for getting the job done and adding a mark in the win column, but we will face four good tests in six nights. Teams that are deep and strong up and down the lineup.

  60. Harditya says:

    Like Mr. Boone and many posters have said, it should be a very quiet week in Montreal regarding the trade front. But you have to think one of the bodies up front will have to be moved eventually. Having an insurance in case of injuries is one thing and an over abundance of forwards is another.
    Galchenyuk-Plekanec-Gionta
    MaxPac-Desharnais-Gallagher
    Bourque-Eller-Weise
    Moen-Briere-Parros
    Prust-White-Bournival
    That’s 15 forwards who can’t play in the minors. With 15 forwards, 7 defensemen and 2 goaltenders, aren’t the Habs over the roster size limit? I realize 3 of them are injured, but they will be healthy soon. Is there no roster limit after the trade deadline?

  61. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Kesler controls all of it. He is an American guy who probably wants to play in an American city. Kesler does not want to come to Montreal. Also, that asking price is way too high for my liking and would involve us giving up Eller and maybe Tinordi which would be a bad move for a player that is no superstar.

  62. scrotchland says:

    so nice to see you’ve all drunk the cool-ade and have bought into what this inept management team has given to Habs fans., an undersized, weak team that if (big if) they make the playoffs will not make it past the first round…..
    It starts with Bergovin who is completely lost, and Therian who has never won anything and has ruined the spirit of his best player, Subban. you read it here first: Subban will not be back next year. And his good friend Cary price will follow not long after.

    • UKRAINIANhab says:

      I summoned you to go back under the Bridge!!!!!!!!!!

      • johnnylarue says:

        Hey Ukraine, the front page news is freaking me out!! Have you got people over there?

        God almighty, Putin is really turning into one of the more sizeable assholes of the early 21st Century…

        • UKRAINIANhab says:

          Im the only one here. Whole familly is over in Kiev. Putin is words I cannot say on here. If he wants Ukraine he better get ready to fight.

          • johnnylarue says:

            Yikes. Well here’s hoping the rest of the world manages to talk him down before any shots are fired…

            This is just abject egomaniacal lunacy from a human turd who suddenly seems to embrace the role of “global super villain”. Can’t see much good coming from this.

            Anyway, here’s sending some positive vibes your way, my man.

          • UKRAINIANhab says:

            Appreciate it! Thanks! : )

          • Habfan10912 says:

            I hope all will work out for your love ones my friend. Prayers and positive thoughts to you and yours.

          • UKRAINIANhab says:

            Thanks Habfan10912!!! Appreciate it!

          • boing007 says:

            What do you know about the makeup of the new Parliament in Kiev? Are there Neo-Nazi ministers in the new government or not?

            Richard R

          • UKRAINIANhab says:

            If you go anywhere in Europe you are going to find “Neo Nazis” they exist. The new Ukrainian government does not have any of this type in there government. Right Sector party in Ukraine does not have any members and will not have any members in Parliament ever.

          • port elgin says:

            Ah, a democratically elected government was overthrown by a mob. So what if that government was friendly towards Russia. If you don’t like it, vote them out next election. I wonder what would happen if a mob tried to overthrow the U.S government?

          • UKRAINIANhab says:

            You have no clue port elgin. Cya later bud. Justify the government killing 70 incocent people. Cya later bud!

    • Steven says:

      1) You misspelled Bergevin, Therrien, and Kool-Aid, which gives your point very little credence.
      2) Subban’s not a UFA this summer. He can’t go anywhere.
      3) Habs are 2nd in their division and like 3rd in the East. They may not win this season, but saying it’s a “big if” that they make the playoffs, then giving them a first round exit right after doesn’t seem fair at all.
      4) If Price didn’t want to stay in Montreal, I find it hard to believe that he’d sign the 6 year deal that he did. Of course, “not long” after” to you may have meant in about that much time, so I shouldn’t nitpick.

      • D Mex says:

        Repeating an earlier comment , the value in this clown’s posts is found in your respective responses.
        ” LMFAO ” only begins to describe it …
        :lol:

        ALWAYS Habs -
        D Mex

    • johnnylarue says:

      Hi scrotch-bot! Go on any hot dates this weekend?

    • Mattyleg says:

      i Hate Terrien he killed Pks joie de vire
      and line up here for youre HAbs goggles if you really think that Bergivan is smart enough to see that were not true contenters and do the right thing and tank get rid of the old wood Markof, Plecankets, Gointa, Meon. We haf to get bigger and more angrier and we nead more ecxperience!!!!!!!!

      Do it! Mark!

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Et le but says:

      Will you join them please?

    • CJ says:

      I love these posts. Totally make my night. Oscar worthy.

      Thanks Scrotch!

    • punkster says:

      When are you folks going to get the joke here?

      Come on…scrotchland…misspelling…Gorges hate…MB hate…come on folks, how many hints do you need?

      Release the Subbang!!!

  63. Congrats to Team Canada says:

    After seeing the emotional response to last nights game against Toronto, on every single website. This rivalry needs a postseason chapter.

    It would be the center of attention for millions and millions of Canadians, way more attention than any recent series against Boston, Philly, or Friggin Ottawa.

    Time to end that 35 year drought.

    • johnnylarue says:

      As much as I agree with the sentiment, I would much rather see the Leafs finish 9th and resume their rightful role as perennial Original Six also-rans.

      It just feels *wrong* when the Leafs make the playoffs.

  64. PoochHabs says:

    A report from the Ottawa Sun that the Oilers are interested in Markov and willing to offer a three year deal. Also that the Habs have offered Subban a 7 year $49 million deal. Take it with a grain of salt…

    • HabFan in Edmonton says:

      I could definitely see the Oilers being interested in Markov as a free agent but not sure they are willing to give up a lot to get him. For all his talk about making changes Mactavish seems unwilling to part with anything of value.

      • PoochHabs says:

        They’re reporting a pick and prospect going the other way….not really giving up much to acquire Markov.

        • CJ says:

          If he is standing firm on four years, his value will decrease significantly. Purely speculation at this point. We will know in less then 70 hours from now.

        • johnnylarue says:

          No way in hell Markov goes to Edmonton. I can’t see him doing that for ANY amount of money, funny as that might sound… I mean, come on, the man has standards!!

          Most probably he will retire a Hab. Second best guess is he signs with a contender in a city with a cushy climate. Long-shot: he gets onboard the Ovie train in DC. But I’m thinking MB and AM79 will meet halfway on a 2-year contract and that will be that.

          • HabFan in Edmonton says:

            Hey, Edmonton’s not that bad if you don’t mind wind chills of -45 in early March. He ‘s Russian, he doesn’t mind the cold.

          • johnnylarue says:

            Sorry–I probably should have added a “no disrespect to Edmonton” in there. ;)

          • CJ says:

            He was able to identify 8 teams before the season where he would not accept a trade. Interestingly Edmonton is not rumoured to be on the list. Of course, these lists, to my knowledge are not made public, so this is second hand info which I’m unable to personally confirm.

        • HabFan in Edmonton says:

          It depends on the pick

      • CJ says:

        LA and Edmonton are the two potential destinations that I keep reading about. Reporter from LA suggested Markov wants four years.

  65. DipsyDoodler says:

    Vignault for Tortorella. Who won that exchange?

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      My buddy Eric was always beating the tom-toms, saying that AV should be fired. He got what he wanted. How does that saying go again?

  66. Mr_MacDougall says:

    Marc, awesome post below.

    I agree Galchenyuk needs to move to C, he seems to be the top forward on the team on the PP at the moment (I don’t think they have another forward worthy of #1 PP duty, I eliminatemPatch because he and DD are joined at the hip, and DD is PP2 material)

    So we need to build a line around Galchenyuk. Ideally two scoring wingers, would a player like Vanek be worth the risk? Moulson?

    • Phil C says:

      Getting them to want to sign in Montreal is the tricky part. Then not overpaying. Then, yes it is a good idea. Anytime that you can improve your team without giving up any assets is a good thing. The free agent market will be thin again.

    • CJ says:

      Sorry to jump in. Again, Marc shared a great post. I’d be interested in signing Moulson in the offseason as a UFA. Not sure I’d make a play for him now, unless it was reasonable. I simply don’t want to contribute towards Buffalo’s future.

    • Paz says:

      Everyone seems to agree that Galchenyuk would be more laudable to the team at center.

      Start your countdown to 25th Cup the day Galchenyuk moves to center.

      • Paz says:

        More valuable not laudable damn edit.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        Absolutely. Let’s adduce DD is our #2 C and Max #2 LW… The team has no first line. I think Galchenyuk needs to be given that opportunity, but the problem is he has no linemates. I’d like to see Eller moved to the wing with Plek and Gallagher on a “3rd line.” Given that Eller and Gallagher are on cheap contracts, this would be an affordable third line cap wise.

        Be on the lookout for a “Erik Cole style” RW to play with Max and DD, I really think they need a player with grit and a scoring touch with them. Again, a very affordable line (assuming they get a winger in the 3.5-5 range)

        As for the top line, Moulson-Galchenyuk-Vanek would be great, but it’s unlikely at the moment, the team still has Bourque (potential RW for DD and Patch until his contract,expires or is moved) and Briere, could turn out to be awesome in the playoffs.. No real fit given his size IMO. Gionta will be gone, hopefully.

  67. Phil C says:

    The Canucks need Iron Mike Keenan to come in and sort them out.

  68. Steven says:

    So, since the Canucks are basically roadkill at this point, and appear to take the seller route, how much do you all think it would take to get Alexandre Burrows?

    The guy’s 6’1″, a legitimate scorer, and a Quebec-born player. The guy appears to be having a season from hell(0G, 5P, -13), but I’m sure he can still score in a new environment, and with stats like that, he should come cheap.

    Thoughts?

    • HabFan in Edmonton says:

      I think you are right about coming cheap, had some good years playing wing with the Sedin’s. Might be worth a gamble if you don’t have to give up much.

    • twilighthours says:

      Bork for Burrows.

      Do it MB!

    • habs_54321 says:

      burrows and edler are having off years I really think we have an opportunity too grab them both.

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      I don’t dislike Alex Burrows, he works as hard as anyone, but I don’t think he’s what we need on our team. If we needed an agitator who can chip in 15-20 goals, then sure.

      Surprised that he is 6’1″, I always thought he was about 5’10″, 175 lbs, but played bigger, feistier.

    • thehabsfan29 says:

      I Would love Burrows on the habs!!!

      Bourque or briere would have to go the other way though. Not sure else what the canucks would ask for.

      Burrows contract isn’t the best though. but I think he would for sure be a upgrade over bourque. he needs a change of scenery.

      Montreal would be a great place for him

    • monmick says:

      We already had Burrows a few years ago. He went under the name “Max Lapierre” back then…

      ~~~> Mathematically eliminated…

  69. Mattyleg says:

    Rags beating the Boos halfway through the 1st.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  70. JUST ME says:

    Way too many outdoor games in my book although at first i found the idea charming and brilliant. I brought us back to real outdoor hockey but now it`s done for the money and unfortunately those events are big commercial successes .

    Those Canucks are falling like a rock 1-8-1 in the last 10 games. It can be a tad ferocious in the medias in Vancouver also. I can imagine that a few days before trade deadline they probably want to get rid of everyone. They are stuck big times with the twins and oh great ! they are both on the IR now !

    • HabFan in Edmonton says:

      I think the Canucks are almost done, even if they are fortunate to slide into 8th I really don’t see them going far. Even before the Sedin’s got hurt they were having bad years, well below a point a game. I think the window of opportunity has closed quickly there, maybe time for a rebuild. Definitely see them being a player at the deadline.

  71. Mattyleg says:

    I dislike these outdoor games.

    It just goes to show that there are too many games in the league schedule.

    Imagine a game in the Premiership being played on a crappy field behind a secondary school, with lumpy ground and a semicircle of dirt around where the keeper stands. Do you think that they would be interested in that?

    Imagine one of the teams misses the playoffs or home advantage, and they lost one of those silly snowbound games.

    Would you say “that’s true, they shouldn’t have to play in those conditions,” or would you say, “who cares, there are 80 other games.

    If you say the latter, it seems a tacit admission that there are enough games in the schedule to make individual ones irrelevant and pointless.

    What do you think?

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      It all comes down to money, like everything else. It’s usually a crappy game because the players are out of their element. The fans don’t realize how horrible the sight lines are until they get there. The NHL doesn’t care because they’re making substantially more money than a regular game.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      An emphatic who cares here.

  72. johnnylarue says:

    Chris Neil actually seems like a pretty nice guy.

    It’s a shame he also happens to be Chris Neil.

  73. Saintpatrick33 says:

    What bugs me is that when the Habs do go all out to try and get a player its either the wrong ones ie Briere, Gomez or they strike out big time and do nothing at the deadline. I don’t understand why the Pens would go after Kesler either.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      I think the Pens could acquire Kesler and would either play him on one of the top two lines on the wing or the 3rd line center and wing on the 1st PP.

      The Pens could do something like that, trade away young players and picks because they’ve got two of the top five players in the world in Crosby and Malkin. Both players will be dynamite for another six or seven years before starting to decline.

      When you’ve got two players that good all you have to do is add a few UFAs to play along with them and you’re on of the top teams.

    • Marc10 says:

      They got Briere because they needed goals to replace Ryder. There wasn’t anyone out there. Lecavalier wasn’t an option. They wanted Bickell but he resigned with Chicago and hasn’t done a heck of a lot all year… The alternative would have been Jagr. They got that wrong… but who knows what happens in the post season as Danny B starts to do his thing. The guy can still score.

      Next year gets interesting. I would expect our young Ds to come up from Ham. Beaulieu for sure, Tinordi and Pateryn strong candidates too. Cube is done. Murray might be seen as a number 7. He can still be useful in trench warfare. Gio will likely be gone. Moen might be too and I would imagine MB looks to offload Bourque somewhere and maybe Eller. It’s also the year Chucky moves up the food chain and slots in at center. MB’s mission should be to give him the wingers he needs to be successful and he should have a bit of room to do that.

      Next year is the year MB’s management team and the coaches get closer to icing the team they want and not the previous management’s team. I would expect more character guys and bigger bodies who move at a fair clip.

      This year is a transition year. Here’s hoping we play Boston in the playoffs and crush Rask’s spirit once and for all.

  74. Price07 says:

    I hope this crap about the habs being interested in Kesler is a lie. The habs need wingers not another centre. The habs are not the type of team that goes after a guy in his prime (that’s for teams who are cup contenders). And if this is true it totally goes against the philosophy of building through the draft (as you’d likely have to give up picks and prospects for Kesler). If anything the habs should sell not buy (unless its picks or prospects).

    • D Mex says:

      Saying that you build thru the draft does not oblige you to ignore other avenues to improve a team. Most people in the Oilers front office would probably agree with this.
      Kesler has been a cornerstone of the Canucks franchise – there’s no doubt about that. What we don’t know is how motivated he is right now, or where he wants to be.

      ALWAYS Habs -
      D Mex

    • PoochHabs says:

      I wouldn’t be too worried.

    • Marc10 says:

      Rumour is Kesler’s list of teams only includes American teams and the Nucks are asking too much (one established young center, an NHL ready prospect and a 1st).

      That’s too much for a guy who is often injured and plays a physical game… Too much for us anyhow as Kesler wouldn’t take us over the hump. So no worries there. He ain’t coming.

      I expect the Habs will sign Markov and perhaps trade Moen. Looks like we won’t get any return for Gio and there’s little opportunity to upgrade. I might see Gio going back to NJ in exchange for Jagr and a pick, but now that Briere is on the roster I don’t know that this works. Then again, Jagr is Jagr and with Pleky they could do some damage.

    • JUST ME says:

      We are in the period when building through draft choices is not yet fruitful. Next season 7 or 8 players from the Bergevin management should join the Hamilton Bulldogs and hopefully strenghten the farm team and eventually supply the Habs. Until then though if you want new blood there are not that many ways to go…

    • NDG BOY says:

      He would never come to montreal because of the parties quuebecois and their bullshit. Ryan will not subject his family to that crap

      We are not as far as u think


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