Habs return home after rookie dinner in Florida

After picking up eight of a possible 10 points on their five-game road trip, which wrapped up with Sunday’s 5-2 win over the Panthers, the Canadiens held their rookie dinner Sunday night in Florida before flying back home on Monday.

Rookies Alex Galchenyuk and Brendan Gallagher will no doubt be a little lighter in their wallets after picking up the tab. The Canadiens will have the day off Monday to recover before hitting the ice Tuesday at 11 a.m. in Brossard as they prepare to face the Ottawa Senators Wednesday night at the Bell Centre (7 p.m., TSN, RDS, TSN 690 Radio).

As Arpon Basu of NHL.com noted on Twitter, the Canadiens now have 17 wins in 26 games. Last season it took them 45 games to get their 17th win.

(Photo by Joel Auerbach, Getty Images)

Ryder salts away win over Panthers, by Dave Stubbs

In the room: White takes it on the chin, by Dave Stubbs

How far can Habs go? by Jack Todd

Prust lost for 10 days, by Dave Stubbs

Photo gallery: Canadiens vs. Panthers

Bouillon will make blooper videos with own goal, by Stu Cowan

Watch the Habs play some football, 24CH

Hamilton Bulldogs pounded, by The Canadian Press

1,125 Comments

  1. pmaraw says:

    kinda weird, the west has 4 teams with a positive goal differential… while the east has 8

  2. frontenac1 says:

    Pixie dust? The sniffing kind?

  3. Loonie says:

    Near everyone seems to be tickled with Bergevin, I’m pleased too. But a cautionary note. Every GM overpays a few players during their time. Bergevin already did it with Price, but that’s okay because he’s Price.

    It’s a matter of overpaying the right guys like Gauthier did with Cole.

  4. derfab says:

    Dumont did a good job yesterday but, since Armstrong is clearly a bust, I think the habs could really use another grinder who can nasty. Alex Bolduc is doing well in the Pheonix system after playing injured for a few seasons. Post shoulder op. he is Portland`s leading scorer, works hard and can scrap. Weber?

  5. TorontoHabsFan says:

    Next season’s UFA reclamation project (to replace Armstrong):

    Pierre-Marc Bouchard on a 1 yr deal.

  6. HabinBurlington says:

    So how big a jump will we see in Salary Cap following next season? Will it go immediately back up to $70+million.

    Basically a few teams will have salary cap hell for only 1 season. There could be a whole bunch of mysterious back or concussion issues with players next year perhaps.

    • Loonie says:

      The Flyers will almost surely have 10 or more players with big cap hits on LTIR.

    • Bripro says:

      I think the timing is great for the teams that will be buying.
      There will be some salary dumping, so early trades galore.
      I’m not saying MB will go all out, but he’ll certainly have some selections to chose from.
      And so far, his sharp approach has helped sign Prust, Bouillon the ambidextre goal-scorer, and reel Subban in.

  7. Loonie says:

    Malkin or Letang?

    Flawed logic.

    The Penguins have Kunitz, Orpik, Niskanen, Vokoun and Glass off the books at the same time that Malkin and Letang’s contracts run out.

    They’ll be able to find less expensive replacements for both Orpik and Vokoun minimum.

    They can and are incredibly likely to keep both.

    The idea that a team with no budget limitations or cap restraints can’t retain a player was, is and will continue to be foolish.

  8. HabinBurlington says:

    In actual contract dollars paid this season, Montreal does not have a single player in the top 50 money paid list.

  9. Timo says:

    Folks, Ottawa is guaranteed to beat the bruins tonight – Gui! is in the lineup.

  10. badbalance says:

    Rumors swirling about Letang comming to Montreal. With Malkin there is noway Pens can afford to re-sign Letang next season and his Wife is Quebecoise and all pieces are there for this to be a reality.

    http://habsolumentfan.com/content/les-rumeurs-du-moment

  11. donmarco says:

    Latendresse playing tonight. Against Boston. He’ll be out by the first intermission.

  12. TorontoHabsFan says:

    With all this talk of Perry maybe getting $9m+/yr I took a look at the biggest cap hits in the league. I think it’s pretty interesting that the 4 biggest cap hits remain Ovechkin, Crosby, Malkin, and E. Staal. Even with UFA inflation, nobody has signed a contract bigger than these, which were signed in 2008.

    Wonder why that is?

  13. HabinBurlington says:

    Next two days will seem like an eternity waiting for Habs game. Have to admit this condensed schedule sure is great for getting to watch team play practically every 2nd night.

    • Bripro says:

      It’s driving my wife crazy.
      “Are you going to finish painting the basement? It’s been six weeks.”
      “But it’s been six weeks of the best hockey in twenty years. You don’t want me missing that, do you?”
      Don’t tell her there’s no hockey before wednesday. I’ll need physio.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        LOL, soo true Bri. I can just imagine you every night, “But Honey, the Habs are playing tonight!”

        • Bripro says:

          :D
          You should have seen it when the NHL Center Ice had free previews for 3-4 weeks.
          It was hockey bliss, relegating my wife and grandson to the bedroom so I could watch it in HD.
          I’m normally sent down to the dungeon, but (at risk of repeating myself) TV viewing down there is out of commission.
          Years previous, myself and my two buddies would get together to watch it.
          But Tony got a promotion, sold his house and moved to Ottawa.
          And at dinner this weekend, he said he’s thinking of quitting his job just to move back and enjoy the hockey atmosphere.
          Needless to say, both wives weren’t too impressed.
          I thought it was a great idea. Go figure.

          • habstrinifan says:

            Hey..can I fill Tony’s spot. Or better yet since Tony moved to Ottawa we can join a tradition in my basement. You think your TV is outdated… wait till u watch Habs-Bruins on my 13″ black and white… even Chara looks small.

  14. habs_54321 says:

    should be noted that in the seven games hes played since being aquired dustin tokarski has put up a very respectable 1.30 gaa and .956 S%

    its to bad leblanc is having such a bad season he woulda looked good with eller and chucky on a kids line

  15. 24 Cups says:

    Ed mentioned signable rentals. Smid and Fistric would be two examples from Edmonton. They both fill a need for Montreal (at different levels of talent) and that not that old. Sadly, both shoot left.

    Smid is probably looking at five years in the 4M range while Fistric might be in the 3yrs/6M range. If one is signed, then he would take Bouillon’s spot next season.

    I wonder what it would take to get Smid out of Edmonton? Would they even consider letting him go? Could the habs re-sign him in July? Would 5yrs@4M be enough?

    • ebk says:

      you think he’s going to command that big of a salary?

      Frankie the Bull can move the the 7th D spot next year, but I can’t see paying that kind of coin Smid

      • 24 Cups says:

        Earl – Forget the lockout, the NHL is going back to it’s old ways. Smid is 27 so five years is probably what it’s going to take. If Gorges gets 3.9M in a closed market, then Smid can get 4.0M in an open market.

        Volchenkov, Komisarek, Grossman and Jovanovski come to mind.

        • ebk says:

          both Fistric and Smid would add to the nastiness of the Habs D, so maybe they would be worth it. Fistric’s a tough kid. Not sure I’d sign either long term though
          Not with Emelin,Markov,Subban and Diaz all needing new contracts after next season.

          Watch Edmonton’s D to much I guess, see them at least twice a week and the thought of any of their defenseman on the Habs scares the heck out of me. great group of young forwards but not sure I’ve ever seen a defensive group that bad.

    • habs_54321 says:

      whitney could also add a familiar dimension to the powerplay that we haven’t had this year, a one timer from the right point to take feeds from markov ala souray,mab,schneids

    • Stuck_in_To. says:

      According to Spector’s recent blog, Edmonton’s D is in bad shape and Smid and new guy Schultz are their best two. He goes further to suggest that Whitney has lost too much mobility due to ankle surgeries to be very effective. Of course, that is not taking into account what his role or minutes in Mtl. would be. Apparently, Edm needs better 3rd and 4th line forwards and D men.

    • donmarco says:

      Ryan Whitney probably wouldn’t cost much and he has more offensive upside than the other 2.

    • Habfan17 says:

      Smid should not get that much, maybe $3 to $3.5 million based on his play. He would be higher up on the depth chart then Boullion, and I believe he is unrestricted at the end of the season. He is making $2.25 million now. If bergevin was given permission to negotiate a new contract now, he could be an upgrade on Gorges.

      Habfan17

  16. The Dude says:

    So this shortened season is tailored for the chance to bring home no: # 25″it’s been 20 long years” and has helped us on our roll,cool. But as we get closer to the trade deadline we know other teams like Boston will tweak their line-up for the play-offs and so must the Habs. We may not get another chance for the next 20 years and the job one is to WIN THE STANLEY CUP! Now I have been hearing some fans say don’t do a thing MB AND OTHER FANS SAY GO GET MORE SMALL AGING VETERANS! Whatsamatterforyou,eh ?We all know what has to be done… We need 2 bigger and younger versions of Clowe if not Clowe himself and don’t say f’n Blunden or Nokia cause we’re going for the cup and the price for doing as well as we are doing right now is back o pak draft choices next year so let’s make this a go eh! As well we got to beef up the size of the D “wonder if that Dman that was using Whites head for target practice is available,lol”…LET’S GO FOR IT M.B.!

  17. Mattyleg says:

    Edmonton need a goalie.
    Big time.
    They need Luongo, as they are the Panthers of the West.

    There’s no way that Van would trade with Edmonton, nor should the Oil want to give them their young talent to bite them in the ass… who could they pick up from the East for one of their young guns?

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • donmarco says:

      Look at the Canucks cap situation next year. They are well and truly screwed. Moving Luongo is pretty much no longer an option. They have to. And the price will drop because other teams know it. I have nothing against the Canucks one way or the other, but they could be in for some tough years ahead.

      • Mattyleg says:

        But what will they do? Trade him to Edmonton for one or two of their (doubtlessly high) picks?

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • Loonie says:

        Agree. The longer Gillis waits the longer he puts himself behind the eight ball. Nobody in the West is going to help them and nobody in the East will pay a big ransom for him now.

        I wouldn’t give him up for nothing. But Gillis shouldn’t be expecting anything with more value than a first round pick.

      • 24 Cups says:

        Amnesty buyouts for Booth and Ballard saves 8.5M. Once that’s done, they then move on from there.

        • donmarco says:

          So then their cap space would be 12 M with only 12 players signed. Most teams carry 23 players on the roster so do the math. That averages out to just over 1 M per new player to be signed. Pretty tight. And the Sedins are UFA’s after next season. What do they do with them? Lou’s gotta go AND they need to bury those 2 contracts.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          The Ballard signing by Gillis was a head scratcher. Has to suck when the GM asking the owner to do a buyout is for a contract that you yourself gave out.

    • TorontoHabsFan says:

      Luongo for Paajarvi (sp?) makes too much sense for it not to happen.

      • donmarco says:

        Gillis should be able to get a draft choice as well. But that’s about the best he’d get for him. The sharks are circling the water. They know time is not on Gillis’ side.

    • Strummer says:

      Luongo has a NTC.
      Mrs Luongo is a Floridian.

      You think she’d be OK with Edmonton?
      She might have spoken with Mrs. Pronger already.

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

  18. SteverenO says:

    Here is a quick look at offensive production, expressed as average minutes of ice time per team goal scored (even strength situations only:

    Forwards
    Gallagher – 12
    Pacioretty – 15
    Prust – 16
    Galchenyuk –18
    Desharnais – 19
    Ryder – 19
    Plekanec – 20
    Eller – 23
    Gionta – 24
    Bourque – 30
    White – 39
    Armstrong -46
    Moen – 47
    Dumont – xx

    DefenseMen:
    Kaberle – 14
    Subban- 19
    Boullion- 19
    Georges- 21
    Patteryn- 22
    Markov -23
    Emelin – 24
    Diaz – 24

    regards,

    Steve O.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      That is a pretty cool stat to look at. Thanks for doing that Steve.

      The Kaberle stat we need to put on colour glossy paper and send around the league. :)

      • 24 Cups says:

        Gerald – I think we also have to look at what type of icetime each player is getting. When are they out there, who are they up against and under what circumstance.

        • ebk says:

          that’s quite a home work assignment you are handing out there, teach

          • 24 Cups says:

            Earl – I remember you giving the headmaster a hard time (now and then) in the past so I guess it’s my turn:-)

            Glad to see you back on the scene. Can you believe this team? There’s a bit of luck and circumstance involved but it has to be the biggest story of the year so far in the NHL (along with Anaheim).

          • ebk says:

            life a little less hectic this year, got a little more time to hang out.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Oh i recognize that Steve, I was more having fun with the Kaberle comment.

          Having said that, it is impressive to see where Prust sits with that number, given he is playing all situations with all kinds of linemates.

    • donmarco says:

      Teams win for many other reasons than even strength offensive production. Your stats are really misleading, but hey, if it helps to showcase Kaberle to the league email it to MB right away.

    • BrianSkrudland says:

      I was told there would be no math.

      ——–
      Wedding Crashers Rule #71: No excuses. Play like a champion!

  19. Mattyleg says:

    Hey, here’s something that’s been getting my goat over the past few games:

    (yeah, that’s right, I found something to gripe about!!)

    Our powerplay. It’s pretty woeful. Those 4 minutes were all but squandered last night, and we almost gave up a shorty.

    My main issue is that we’re relying too much on the point-man, and the defense knows it. In our first few games, before PK was around, there was a lot more creativity on the PP, with the puck being dished low for actual chances rather than just as a means to draw the defenders down to liberate the point-man.

    I’d like to see Patches or Gally getting the puck low and driving to the net, with the point-man coasting in for rebounds into the slot.

    Anyone else care to weigh in on this?

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Loonie says:

      Wasn’t the powerplay operating at 28% on the road trip?

      • Mattyleg says:

        Well I guess if you’re happy with it, that’s fine.

        It’s just that when I see the Islanders PP…

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • donmarco says:

          Habs PP system seems to be based a lot on cross ice passing, with a d man pinching in. Watch the forwards. Once the pass goes back to the point for a shot, usually Subban, they crash the net. I find, although predictable, they’re constantly taking defenders out of their positions and it creates shooting and passing lanes. I’m actually quite satisfied with the PP. more movement than many other teams I’ve been watching.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      “(yeah, that’s right, I found something to gripe about!!)”

      Like your statement, you’re really digging deep there ;-).

      That PP can explode at anytime. Put the puck back to Subban and you have a 50/50 chance of either scoring or getting a good rebound.

    • krob1000 says:

      You can attribute that directly to Michael Ryder…..he is planting himself in the slot causing someone to cover him…Markvo then recognizes this and drops down…..if the bok/diamond whichever they are playing collapses down as they must….it leaves one point man high at the top. PK knows it essential to get pucks through in that situation…if he gets in trouble…Markov and one guy on the other sdie pop out to give PK a left and right out option to reset.
      Pk’s are choosing point shot over Ryder isn slot or Markov dropping down…Montreal appears to making that their option and until it is solved they are not going down low toooften. But notice they still try the hard pass cross crease every now and then to keep it honest and that is what frees all of the options to run the aforemtnioned at the blueline.

  20. Born in a Bad Year says:

    What I would like to see is no power play special teams. The team has three scoring lines, roll them. We have two blueline parings with offensive ability, leave them as be and play them. No more awkward post power play pairings with the resulting confusion as we try to re-align the defense back to the normal pairings.

    • Loonie says:

      To Therrien’s credit he’s done what you’re suggesting quite often. It isn’t routine but he has made a habit of playing three different lines on the powerplay in a given game.

      There is no set in stone powerplay unit at forward.

    • Habsrule1 says:

      Whatever MT is doing seems to be working.
      If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

      Go Habs Go!!

      “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

  21. donmarco says:

    More grist for the mill, but I’m hearing persistent rumours that Chicago may use its amnesty buyout on Hossa after this season. If you look at other teams who are handcuffed by some very long term contracts the same could be said for Vancouver (Luongo), TB (Lecavalier), Ehroff (Buffalo) and many others. These players would, if I understand correctly, become instant UFA’s. In a year where there will already be a glut of UFA’s it will be a buyer’s market. If I was MB I’d be looking at every chance to shed salary that I could. IMHO of course.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Why would Chicago buy him out this summer when they could do the same the following summer. The Amnesty buyouts have a 2 year window within in which they can occur.

      • donmarco says:

        A lot would depend on how tight they are against the cap. As of right now, they only have 4 M available with 18 players signed. Most teams will carry 22 players at least. Not much wiggle room, and no chance they’d be active on the FA market.

      • donmarco says:

        Vancouver’s. cap situation next year is even worse.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Just looked at their team on capgeek, they have to find a way to unload Luongo in order to have any flexibility. Gillis needs to stop looking for players in return and just get rid of that contract.

          • donmarco says:

            Hence my comment about the buy out. Either that or the price Gillis wants for him will have to drop significantly. Teams with big budgets and cap room are really going to be in a great bargaining position. And no, Habs don’t want Longo. If TB bought out Lecavalier and ate Luongo’s instead they’d actually SAVE money. And goaltender problem instantly addressed.

    • habs_54321 says:

      why would chicago dump hossa hes such a big part of their team. even if they did want to dump him they wouldn’t need to buy him out their would be a lineup of teams looking to trade for him

      • donmarco says:

        They have zero cap room (4 M) and wold Ned to sign another 4-5 players in the off season. And Emery is not signed. Yes he’s critical to their success but if they don’t do something they’re going to go south very fast. And he’s fragile too.

  22. 24 Cups says:

    I just noticed that Brian Gionta, the team’s captain, is now Montreal’s 4th highest scoring forward. His stats for an 82 game season would come in at 27/21/48 which is exactly what he had in his first two years. I also would say that those numbers would be decent for most team’s 2nd line RW.

  23. Gerry H says:

    OK. So winning is becoming routine and the playoffs seem ages off, so I guess we have to fill the time with something. Carbo et al on l’antichambre got the ball rolling in earnest last night and now we are all tweaking the lineup compulsively, like TV networks after the mid-season sweeps.

    Hey, the team can always be improved and, yes, I get that a cup run is not something you get to contemplate too often at the midpoint of a season. MB can’t afford to be complacent. (And, bless him, the guy doesn’t appear to have a complacent bone in his body.)

    Can we at least agree that taking on any contract with term and significant $$$ attached to it should only be considered if someone really and truly exceptional is on the table? Next year, won’t be too tough. Desharnais will be due for a big raise and Ryder will have to be re-signed or replaced, but after that, there really aren’t any major pieces to worry about. But over spend now and 2014-15 becomes sheer Hell. We have only Gorges signed on D beyond next season. Eller will be up for a major raise. Gio has to be re-signed or his output and role replaced.

    Can we agree that rentals, perhaps signable rentals if the cost isn’t too high, are the way to go here?

    • ed says:

      “SIGNABLE RENTALS” – yes – if that is English – I agree with that concept exactly for this team.

    • Loonie says:

      For this season I agree.

      I wouldn’t be in a hurry to fill holes long term with Bourque, Pacioretty, Gionta, Gallagher, Galchenyuk and Eller all locked up for next season.

      • Gerry H says:

        To me, that’s what makes this position so much fun (you forgot Pleks, BTW). Gilding the lily might be pushing it, but MB has quickly managed himself into a spot where he can do a little tweaking now, but still have ample opportunity to take full advantage of the UFA market (or not) this summer. He can afford to turn his nose up to any but the most compelling potential deals. Add to that the notion that, surely, this team has quickly become attractive to players interested in success, and what we have is a complete transformation of the organization and its prospects in a mere 8-9 months.

        Wow.

  24. ed says:

    once Diaz returns, the 4th man on the PP should Emelin, and here’s why:

    Emelin is an offensive threat – and we are just starting to see it now that he is getting a chance to get his NHL confidence as a power play point man.

    In the KHL, Emelin was a power play point man who scored 11 goals and added 15 assists in only 52 games. Those are 40 points per season numbers if projected out to an 82 game schedule.

    I (and several others here) tried last year to advise the Habs to just give Emelin the games he needs at the point to develop his confidence there.

    He has the skills to make our 2nd line power play effective, and with Diaz I am sure it will work.

    • Loonie says:

      Agree. Emelin is better offensively than both Bouillon and Gorges.

      • ed says:

        Emelin is turning into a legit top 4 d-man.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          It is great watching him play so well. Can’t hurt that he must also be so much more comfortable having a D partner where they can communicate on the ice and discuss things while on the bench.

          • ed says:

            yes. the communication is a great way to increase a player’s comfort level and confidence.

            doesn’t hurt, either, that Markov is a superb player!! ha! ha!

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Absolutely, while Markov may not have the same step, it is like having a coach on the ice with him there. So smart, so much to learn from. I also believe Markov is probably loving playing with Emelin.

    • Luke says:

      Unless you want Emelin, a solid defender as well, ready to play the first shift after a PP which typically sees a strong pushback by the PK-team. Especially if they have star players (Ovechkin) that don’t kill penalties who have been resting for 2 minutes, chomping at the bit.

  25. saskhabfan says:

    Ah, i just had to do it. He just makes it too easy.

    RetroMikey

    February 22, 2013 at 8:50 am

    After the road trip, let’s see how you feel about the team.
    Praise the team now, glorify the team now, magnify the team now, etc…by the end of March, you’ll be crapping on the team.

    • Chuck says:

      Hehe… I was wonder when someone was going to dig that up. :)

      ___________________________________________________
      Being a Hab fan is like buying real estate: only over the long-haul will you appreciate the true value of your investment.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Nice work Sask!

    • Mattyleg says:

      Nothing better than people being called on their BS.

      Now, if we could go back and unearth all those ‘Trade PK’ and ‘Let ‘im Walk’ posts from the beginning of the season…

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • HabinBurlington says:

        (slowly walks out of room, careful to close door quietly)

        Just kidding. I didn’t say that…. Actually I didn’t, Really!

      • Habsrule1 says:

        I’d have to quit my job if I wanted to find time to pull all those out Matty!

        Go Habs Go!!

        “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

        • Mattyleg says:

          I appreciate it, cheers.
          I heard that the government just made some adjustments to the EI system (probably in the favour of those wanting to apply), so go for it!

          See everyone? Someone is willing to make sacrifices for the good of the rest of us!

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

  26. youngwun says:

    Ottawa please beat Boston tonight !

  27. krob1000 says:

    On Ryder…he has actually missed about 5 opportunities that he normally buries…missed the net completely on 2 of them and others got stopped but he is in the right place like goals scorers are. Gallagher wills his in…Ryder just finds dead spots like a poor mans Hull. IF Ryder ever had Adam Oates for a linemate he would have potted 40-50.

    • ebk says:

      Not sure about the 50 but Bill Lindsey had a good comparison for him last night, Luc Robitaille.
      Neither strong skaters but find open ice and have a quick release.

      Although, thinking about it, a lot of players would have hit 50 with Oates setting them up

    • ed says:

      I am liking Ryder’s production and appreciating his contribution much more than I thought I would. I was not in favor of the trade.

      “Lucky Luc” is the leading goal scorer for left wingers of all time with 668 NHL goals.

      I see the comparison but it’s a stretch and a half.

  28. H.Upmann says:

    I know folks pan Jack Todd on here, but I actually find his pieces to be good for entertainment and a bit of light reading to pass a few minutes.

    • donmarco says:

      And when you’re finished reading you have a handy piece of toilet paper. I don’t think he’s made an insightful comment this millennium.

    • Mustang says:

      From time to time he comes up with something worth reading but 2 weeks ago he basically said that everyone that follows motorsports is an idiot (he was moaning and groaning about the Daytona 500 being a loud waste of gasoline). As far as I’m concerned, anyone that puts that kind of crap in his weekly sports column, is an idiot.

      • donmarco says:

        Ever since he was called out for his unrelenting hatchet job on Javier Vasquez of the Expos, only to learn he had never even been in the Expos clubhouse, let alone tried to interview the player, he lost all credibility and has never regained it. He’s a dangerous hack.

  29. Stevie.Ray says:

    So let’s pretend that MB called Tambellini today and asked what the cost for a guy like Smid would be. Tambellini says two 2nd round picks. MB plays hardball and counters with one 2nd round pick. They both agree to disagree and hang up.

    Do you think a guy like MB would call Chicago and ask them to make an even lower offer for Smid to lower Edm’s expectations? Do you think GM’s do stuff like that?

    • Loonie says:

      We acquired Ryder near immediately after it was reported Boston wanted him.

      • Bripro says:

        ….suckers….

      • Stevie.Ray says:

        Yeah. But I’m Wondering if teams will help out other teams. Chicago making a lower offer would help us get him for cheap.

        I doubt Boston will help us out lol

        • 24 Cups says:

          I think teams do just the opposite – they try and drive up the price so the team making the trade has to pay more.

          Any team making a deal with Montreal at the deadline will certainly hold out for Calgary or Nashville’s 2nd rounder. That’s what happened a few years ago when Montreal traded away their 2nd rounder( from another team) and it turned out to be the 32nd guy in the draft. That’s Collberg territory.

          • Stevie.Ray says:

            Do you think that because Chi is in the same conference as Edm, they would want to side with MTL. Not to mention MB’s close ties to Chicago.

            After watching Moneyball, I think GM’s like to play loose like that

        • ont fan says:

          I doubt very much that MB would even approach the hawks with something like that, unless the Oilers were to make a three way trade.

          • Stevie.Ray says:

            You don’t think me would even call and say “hey give Edmonton a lowball offer to help me out a bit” they don’t want chi to make a serious offer.

  30. krob1000 says:

    Poor Dumont and Pateryn….called up just in time to chip in for the rookie dinner!

  31. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Good job by all on this road trip, well done. Hats off to Ryan White for taking one for the team last night. This team has definitely exceeded my expectations & I’ll continue to enjoy the ride.

  32. Mavid says:

    Happy Vacation day everyone!! what to do..what to do..I hate both Boston and Ottawa..I am torn…I may have to cheer for the Sens..barf..barf..why can’t they both lose..please help me get past this..

  33. donmarco says:

    As much as many of us would like to see MB make a move to solidify this team even further, I do not think for a second he’ll deviate from his plan to continue to build from within and build an organization that will be among the elite for years to come. That’s still a year or more away, but in the meantime he has put together a team of character, leadership and solid chemistry. Most of us really like this team, but there’s no way he’s going to compromise on his long term plan for a shot at a playoff run.

  34. Newf_Habster says:

    I wonder how much Gally, Chuckie and Pateryn paid their teammates for their dinner and drinks. $5,000? $10,000?

    • GrimJim says:

      Winnipeg free press reported that NHL rookie dinner typically cost about $8,000 to $10,000. Saint Pete Times reported that in 2006 the Lightninings rookie dinner (split four ways) totaled $24,000. The highest rookie dinner I could find was for the Dallas Cowboys which was $54,000 but NFL rosters are 50-60 players.

  35. mark_ID says:

    For anyone good at finding odd stats…… our record 17-5-4 …the best start for the Habs since what season? I’m curious. I’m guessing was a very long time ago.

    “I think I may have found a way to get us Bonds and Griffey, and we really wouldn’t give up that much” – Costanza

  36. Bripro says:

    With Pleks and Gionta together, I thought for certain the Ryder was going to slow them down.
    And during the first few games that it took him to find his legs and adapt to the team’s style, I thought “oh, oh, here goes the same old Ryder!”
    But gladly, he’s proven me wrong and he played to his strengths on the weekend.
    I don’t think he’s a small body, but he’s not the in-your-face type.
    However, with some very fancy stickwork, he stole the puck all game.
    I’m liking this trade more and more.

    • shiram says:

      I thought the tough assignements given to the Pleks line would go awry with Ryder’s play, and I haven’t been able to watch Ryder play much recently, as he been good on the back-check and in his own zone?

  37. Stevie.Ray says:

    Our D prospect pool is looking better and better every day. Every one knows about Tinordi and Beaulieu. Ellis was a nice surprise last year. Pateryn is proving to be a legitimate NHL prospect. Dietz is the leading goal scoring defenseman in the CHL after a brilliant couple months. And today Magnus Nygren was awarded the Top Defenseman Award in the Swedish Elite League. Future is bright.

    • donmarco says:

      While I agree wholeheartedly with your comments, the lack of true prospect depth up front is worrisome. Some are too far away from the NHL to make a fair assessment, but with 6 picks int eh first three rounds (so far) hopefully these shortcomings will be addressed this summer. Scary looking depth coming up on D though. You’re right.

      • Stevie.Ray says:

        True. Bournival, holland, Quailer are maybe our best AHL prospects, and that’s pretty shallow.

        Bozon, hudon, Collberg, vail, offer a bit more depth in a couple years.

        • donmarco says:

          Don’t forget Kristo.

          • Mr. Biter says:

            UND starts playing the NCAA playoffs this weekend vs Michigan State. Both MacMillan and Kristo scored 1 goal on the weekend to finiosh the regular season. If UND does lose this weekend and is eliminated what happens to Kristo?

            Mr. Biter
            No Guts No Glory

  38. Mats26 says:

    Ryder has 9pts in 7 games with the Habs. Erik Cole has 7 points on the season. People still missing that big body driving to the net? Look’s like 21,11,and 51 drive to the net just fine…

    Our biggest need is a Gudbranson type but they don’t grow on trees. But Pateryn looks solid – no panic in his game.

    • Lafleurguy says:

      Ryder has always been a “quiet” scorer in contrast with the former no.73 (now no.11) whose goals have a lot of crash and bang to them. Subban also quietly piling up the points.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

  39. Chuck says:

    Lots of big talk about the Habs right now, but if they get iced in the first round of the playoffs in 5 or 6 games, how many here will be calling on MB to make wholesale changes?

    And you know that’s exactly what would happen. ;)

    ___________________________________________________
    Being a Hab fan is like buying real estate: only over the long-haul will you appreciate the true value of your investment.

  40. Bripro says:

    I have to laugh…. yes… it happens sometimes!
    At the beginning of the season, so many posts were asking for a big D and a big C in order to solidify the season and help the team make the playoffs.
    Now, many are asking for that same big D and big C to win the cup.
    Amazing… it boggles the mind.
    And I love every minute of it.
    We’re in first… yeah yeah.

  41. shiram says:

    Gotta love this Habs team.
    Pleks is almost turning into a 2-way responsible sniper, tied into the top 10 for goals by centers.
    DD is balancing his passing with adept shooting.
    Eller is doing the grunt work on the 3rd, and we got a few pieces that can handle the 4th line.
    And we’re missing 2, well now 3, very important players in Diaz, Bourque and Prust.

    • ed says:

      balance in the attack makes it very difficult to defend against us.

      just as everyone starts concentrating on stopping DD and Max, plekanec and Gionta get going, or Gallgher and Eller chip in;

      team defence is also exceptionally good.

    • Bripro says:

      I do have a small complaint regarding Eller.
      There’s no question that the kid has found his mojo since warming up the bench earlier in the year, but he still has a habit of trying to make the big play.
      Chucky was wide open at the net at least 3 times yesterday, and instead of passing, Eller chose to shoot.
      Chucky managed to draw the D in, but when they turned around to commit to Eller, leaving the kid wide open…… no pass.
      Like I said, small complaint.

      • Ozmodiar says:

        It’s never a bad idea to shoot.

        On one play, Chucky worked his way into the slot and opted for a slick backhand pass to Eller that didn’t work out. When he got back to the bench, I noticed a coach was talking to him while he nodded his head. I can only guess, but I think the message was – “just shoot it, kid.”

      • shiram says:

        I would not be surprised to hear that Therrien asked his center to shoot more often, Pleks is definitely shooting more, DD is doing it a little more also, and Eller too.
        But that’s alright, I think there’s still space for Eller to adapt and change his game.

  42. Say Ash says:

    Nobody thinks Clowe would be way too slow for this team?

    • Chuck says:

      Have him do his line change 15 seconds ahead of his mates, and he’ll be fine.

      ___________________________________________________
      Being a Hab fan is like buying real estate: only over the long-haul will you appreciate the true value of your investment.

    • donmarco says:

      No, but many people think he’d be too expensive.

    • Ozmodiar says:

      I don’t think Clowe would knock anyone out of the Habs (healthy) top 9. Considering that it’s Moen’s position now, I can only see this happening as a Moen for Clowe swap. Moen’s no speedster, so not a big downgrade there.

      • donmarco says:

        Sharks are already in cap trouble next year. Moen has three more years at 1.9 each. Do you really think they’d want him? Would you?

        • Ozmodiar says:

          People always say a team is in cap trouble ‘next year’. :)

          Moen signed for 3 more years @ $1.8M per might be exactly what they want for their 3rd line – rather than dealing with a UFA already making 3.6.

          Look at what Dallas did when they got Cole. Perhaps a bit over-priced, but they avoided dealing with the crazy UFA market to fill the gap.

    • Timo says:

      Slower than Moen?

  43. Ozmodiar says:

    Is Boullion in the record books now?

    I can’t recall another player ever scoring in exactly the same top corner in consecutive periods, excluding overtime.

  44. Phil C says:

    Ryan White; smart to draw the penalty, or smart to not tangle with someone who is 6’6″ and 250lbs+? I take the latter.

    • Irishhabsfan says:

      I think Ryan White learned his lesson a few weeks back when he was not dressed for a few games. Goon style hockey only works when you take the bait. the current Toronto Flyers, oops! I thought it was 1975 for a minute, are beginning to find that out. Teams usually learn from their mistakes , game three against the Leafs showed that.Use your speed and skill, against teams like that, and the outcome will be positive most of the time.

  45. arcosenate says:

    Ryan White’s nickname should be Rondelle, seriously, homage to the great Expo and the hockey connection is awesome.

    Rondelle White!

  46. aversglay says:

    Jack Todd is like the Rex Murphy of sports. Follows something (sports or politics) closely enough to gain a somewhat competent point of view. As such, you cannot offer any real insight. You have no real talent for comedy. So what to do? Just be moralistic — tell people this is good and this is bad. Don’t ever go out on a limb and defend something unpopular, no just attack the unpopular and defend the popular. Somehow that is a thing. It just seems so easy and lazy.

  47. Habitant in Surrey says:

    Stompin’ Tom Connors; ‘The Good Ol’ Hockey Game’ : http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockeynightincanada/

    _________________________________________________________
    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY
    http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=423049

    Campaign to Retire Toe Blake’s Number 6 !!!

    …and, last, but not least: FREE PK !!!

    • reddog24 says:

      The Memorial Service for Stompin Tom Connors is in Peterborough on Wednesday where he got his name. Ken Dryden and Adrianne Clarkson are 2 speakers for sure along with numerous other entertainers. Apparently one of this Countries TV Networks are going to broadcast it live. Great night of speakers, music, videos on large screens etc. He loved Peterborough.

  48. The Cat says:

    It’ll be interesting to see what Ottawa does as far as trading goes.

    [Disclaimer]: I’m a hockey fan. I care about the habs, but probably not as much as you.

  49. Scotty90 says:

    Appears Bruins have their sights on Clowe….. as if they aren’t big enough! MB please do your best to land him.

  50. SteverenO says:

    Oops! posted in Yesterdays thread :

    Play-off run:

    Lots if discussion about going outside for help in the playof run. What can the Canadiens do to improve their chances come playoff time without making any trades?

    I would start with

    1. Reduce Markov playing time to max of 21 mins per game , keep him out of the line up in back to back games. We will need a strong and healthy Markov to go anywhere in the post season.

    2. Develop a second line PP unit on the blue line. While Emelin and Gorges have shown recent flashes of offensive ability, I truly think the answer lies with one of the forwards being used on the point. Plekanec has been used in that role in the past, but he is a key contributor to the PP as a centerman. Personally I would work on both Eller and Galchenyuk in that role and give both of them a chance . Diaz returning will help, and Boullion is acceptable, but I have a hunch that playing Eller (or Galchenyuk) on the point with the second PP unit may bring some very good results.

    3. Suck up to the refs. Don’t argue any calls. Don’t show up the refs in any way. The last thing we need is referees “looking” for calls to make against us.

    any other suggestions?

    regards,

    Steve O.

    • ebk says:

      re #2 no thanks.
      the PP is clipping along nicely since Ryder had been added and once Diaz gets back there is no need for a forward on the point. Subban and Markov at times basically stay out for the whole 2 minutes anyway. Between those three they seem to be covering it nicely. and lastly, Habs have yet to allow a short-handed goal, so if it ain’t broke don’t mess with it

      • SteverenO says:

        Both Eller and Galchenyuk have proven to be responsible defensively.

        Markov and PK should NOT be playing the entire 2 minutes. If we end up not scoring we get a disadvantage by having these two guys both recuperating on the bench. Diaz return will help the second wave but besides Subban, Markov, and Diaz, we do not have a viable, strong 4th candidate for the point on the powerplay.

        regards,

        Steve O.

  51. Chuck says:

    Folks are already talking about the possibility of meeting the Laffs in the first round, but honestly, if the Laffs make the playoffs I’d like to see them match up against the Bruins.

    There’s no doubt that the Bruins are one of, if not the toughest teams in the league. Then add in some skill, decent goaltending, and it’s no wonder that many are picking them to come out of the East.

    This season, it’s like the Leafs are trying to emulate what the Bruins have done… just not a s successfully. A Boston beatdown and slug-fest to put the Laffs in their place would be oh so wonderful to watch. Then of course, we could pick at the Bruin carcass in the second round. :)

    ___________________________________________________
    Being a Hab fan is like buying real estate: only over the long-haul will you appreciate the true value of your investment.

  52. Hobie Hansen says:

    Regarding the Poll.

    I think the Canadiens can finish 1st. Why not?

    The city of Montreal has intelligent fans. And from listening to the Team 690 AM this morning, Elliot Price and the boys are basically saying what we’re saying, they need to add further depth with some toughness.

    We beat the Bruins last time we played and lost the next game against the Islanders. In the playoffs, next game isn’t against the Islanders, you’re right back at it against the Bruins.

    I’m really not afraid of any other team than the Bruins. Maybe we get lucky and avoid them but a smart GM will make a few moves to line up a bit better against them.

    • Mattyleg says:

      I agree.
      The Bruins have games in hand, but their March, when they have to make up those games, is insane.

      I just can’t see them doing as well as we have.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Chuck says:

      That’s the problem; the consensus is that we’d have to make some moves to acquire some depth and toughness in order to handle the Bruins, especially since the injury bug has started to bite us. But barring any big injuries, the Bruins are fine as they are.

      ___________________________________________________
      Being a Hab fan is like buying real estate: only over the long-haul will you appreciate the true value of your investment.

    • lavie says:

      It seems most fans agree on “A tough guy who can play as well” and “A big stay-at-home Dman”.

  53. TorontoHabsFan says:

    The only trade I see Montreal making at the deadline will be a depth move – some insurance for the bottom pairing. Somebody who will likely sit but might be needed in case of injury.

    Ryan O’Byrne for a 4th or 5th.

  54. mrhabby says:

    Brandon Dubinsky for Travis Moen.

  55. HabinBurlington says:

    So Jack Todd thinks Carey Price is the only star on this team.

  56. Lafleurguy says:

    Purse jokes are tough, here goes:

    Why are purses more popular in rookie-dinners in Florida than Carolina?
    Real-estate is the reason, Florida has more condomsinem.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  57. habsfan0 says:

    How realistic is it for the Habs to trade for Corey Perry and what would it take to get him?

    Since he’s an UFA at season’s end,maybe they can just wait till the offseason to sign him.

  58. Habfan10912 says:

    Completely off topic and not related to anything anywhere but I just watched one of those commercials for a tort lawyer. I kid you not in the commercial the announcer said, If you’ve been killed as a result of taking Yasmin you may be entiitled to damages.” Huh? Mail me my check please.

  59. Loonie says:

    I wonder if Bergevin clearing cap space was a proactive move in anticipation of Subban going bonkers on the NHL.

    If that’s the case it was a very intelligent move.

    Now the question is will he go to Subban and Meehan in July of this year and say how about $35 million for the next seven years?

    And more importantly, what will Subban say to that?

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      Uhhh…no.

      “You’re always, always, always looking to make your team better. Always.”- Marc Bergevin

      • Loonie says:

        No to what?

        Subban tied the rookie scoring record for defensemen with this franchise. Lead the team last year in ice-time, was its most versatile defenseman and was a plus player doing a great job on the opposing team’s best players. Now he’s the second best defenseman in the NHL in terms of ppg. In addition, he’s doing that with less minutes played than last season.

        • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

          Sorry…no to a $5 million/year contract. He will want more, especially after the last negotiation. I think he is better than Kris Letang who is the Norris favorite. MB will have to pay like he did with Price.

          “You’re always, always, always looking to make your team better. Always.”- Marc Bergevin

          • The Jackal says:

            Letang is a Norris favourite? That guy sucks in his own end.
            Too bad that trophy has become an award for D scoring instead of being a great D overall.

        • HardHabits says:

          No to extending in July. Subban gets extended at next season’s trade deadline.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I can hear the sound of an armour vehicle pulling up in tron of the Bell Center now. And he’ll be worth every Loonie. :)

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      Yup, Subban has a lot of power right now. Well deserved I must say. He and Price are 1A and 1B right now as the two most important players on the team. Give him the same contact as Price IMO.

      • Loonie says:

        I believe Price got the contract that he did so that Bergevin can set the precedent that nobody gets paid more than that as long as he’s GM. So I would say $6 million annually is the absolute most Subban will get.

    • Gerry H says:

      We appear to have a 1 PPG, defensively able Dman, here. $5MM AAV ain’t gonna do it.

    • lavie says:

      Subban’s contract will be more than $5 mil per.

  60. HabinBurlington says:

    I know that Clowe and Ryder are 2 years apart in age and from different areas of Newfoundland, but anyone know if they are good buddies off the ice?

  61. habs001 says:

    Unless there is a total collapse the Habs should make the playoffs
    3 things concern me about the Habs in the playoffs that may not fully show up in the regular season
    1) pk right now 13th but not confident that all of the pk personal can do the job in the playoffs(hate to loose a series due to the pk)
    2) not sure if we can handle aggressive physically pounding forechecking along with the opposition d pinching(i have a feeling the refs will let lot of roughing go in the playoffs)
    3) scoring 4th right now and hopefully keeps up in the playoff but we have many forwards that have contributed in many other ways than scoring goals(armstrong,Moen,White,Prust,Eller) plus the Habs have the 2 kids who have contributed in scoring but who knows in the playoffs…so the team cannot afford any of the regular scorers to go into playoffs scoring slumps…

  62. Sportfan says:

    I see why people want Clowe sort of. Big body etc etc can get up to 60 points in an regular season, but I bet the asking Price on him is high would you actually give a package for him?

    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  63. Habfan10912 says:

    Speaking of Ryan O’b, loved Frankie B’s reaction when he went top shelf on Budaj. I’m so glad the Panthers scored one of their own so it didn’t directly result in a lost shut out.
    All that aside, which was a worse “own goal”, O’b’s or Frankies?

  64. Sportfan says:

    Just wrote this on the other feed just before the new one came up

    @HabinBurlington I was reading the article you posted about more NHL teams. The way I see it with the new divisions in palce for next season adding two more teams makes a lot of sense. I really see Markham and Quebec getting teams in the next 20 years and Seattle, but I was wondering doesn’t Kansas City have a relatively new Arena just waiting I could be wrong, but I’m sure Kansas could get a team too no?

    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

    • adamkennelly says:

      I live in KC. We have a brand new rink sitting empty but….I don’t see it happening…not a big enough market to support an NHL team.

      • habs-hampton says:

        I’m not sure if KC is considered “southern US”, but if it is, you don’t need to be able to support a team, the northern US and Canadian teams will support it for you.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      The new alignment suggests expansion in the West not East. I can’t believe the league does the re-alignment and then 2 years later has to switch teams back to the West if indeed Quebec and Toronto get the new franchises.

      It will be interesting to watch.

      Seattle would be my bet for expansion.

  65. HabinBurlington says:

    A good assessment from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal on the top UFA’s available at trade deadline perhaps.

    http://www.edmontonjournal.com/sports/hockey/edmonton-oilers/Hockey+World+Perry+Iginla+Clowe+play/8076627/story.html

  66. melski says:

    anniversary of the last game at the Forum…..lotsa memories for us old-timers

  67. scavanau says:

    Anyone know wheres theres footage of White showing composure against Yonkman?

  68. mrhabby says:

    question..are the habs built for the playoffs. Given the game changes to tight checking , forecheck, cheap calls, physical play, road hockey.

    anybody.

  69. frontenac1 says:

    Hola amigos! That rookie dinner must have been a blast eh?Prust could have been the bouncer even with one arm in a sling! “I stay home on New Years Eve.Too many rookies out there”….W.C.Fields.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      If they were truly interested in having a great time, our friend Front would have been invited. CHeers!

      Edit: And our buddy Timo too. He could have bonded with Price. :)

  70. habs-hampton says:

    I know the Bulldogs are having a rough year, but now even the Canadian Press pounded them?

  71. Timo says:

    Come one, only one “purse” joke so far? You people are slipping.

  72. Mattyleg says:

    No mugshots at this rookie dinner?
    All handbags and camera-phones accounted-for?

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  73. Ian Cobb says:

    Ian Cobb
    March 11, 2013 at 10:12 am

    We are sure having a great time this year. And we owe it all to Geoff Molson for reacquiring his families famous franchise!
    Only a Montreal-er deep with history, knows how it is suppose to be.

    Here is where our team places in the 30 team league.

    Points——–38, We are in 3rd place.. Last week 3rd place.
    Goals F——-84, We are in 5th place.. Last week 5th place.
    Goals A——-66, We are in 11th place.. Last week 11th place.
    Goal Diff— +18, We are in 5th place.. Last week +15 for 3rd.

    All the while remembering that Boston has 4 games in hand, that is a possible 8 points!

  74. Mattyleg says:

    More or less sums up your posts…

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  75. commandant says:

    The guys on twitter with anonymous names don’t have sources…. unless thats what they call it when their mom yells down to the basement to tell them she made dinner.

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
    http://lastwordonsports.com/

  76. The Jackal says:

    Whoever created that rumour must have been high as hell. High as hell.

  77. The Dude says:

    What ever we’re talking about I did not do :mrgreen:

  78. Propwash says:

    Bath salts…not even once.

    ____________________
    DOOOOOOOOOOOOMED!

  79. frontenac1 says:

    Sniffing Dust! Tried it once when I was a young lad duck hunting. Bad stuff amigos.

  80. HabFab says:

    Heard that you have the bird shot to prove it too amigo :)

  81. HabinBurlington says:

    Hey were you at game yesterday bud?

  82. HabinBurlington says:

    That must have been a great game for you to enjoy. I figured you were there, and also assumed by third period you had to be six sheets to the wind with the way the Habs were playing!

  83. HabinBurlington says:

    All the best James, sorry to hear about your loss. Take care.

    Glad you enjoyed the game.

  84. donmarco says:

    Anything but a 3 point game. Starting to look like it.

  85. 1010 says:

    Haha. Was talkin` to Mavid. They line up the comments in order of entry. Actually agree with your comment.

    GO HABS…

  86. The Dude says:

    I think it’s now 6’0″ and 195 lbs

  87. GrosBill says:

    Chi sure did. Watching Byuf go battle pronger in front of Philly net was a treat. Keith is no softy either, ask the canucks (never cheapshot Seabrook!).


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