Gomez sent home, he’ll be bought out

AUDIO: Marc Bergevin news briefing

BREAKING: Scott Gomez sent home, where he will remain for the season. He’ll be fully paid but if Canadiens want to buy him out at season’s end, which they will, they can’t afford the risk of him being injured.

Pat Hickey quick hit:

Scott Gomez’s days as a Canadien are over.

General  manager Marc Bergevin announced Sunday morning in Brossard on Day One of the team’s training camp that Gomez was being sent home and would be bought out in the summer.

“We felt this was the best decision for the good of the team,” said Bergevin. He added that the Canadiens need to clear out cap space going forward and the deal will remove Gomez’s $7.357 million from the books for the 2013-14 season. The Canadiens will have to pay Gomez $5.5 million not to play this season and then will pay him two-thirds of the $4.5 million he’s scheduled to make next season.

Bergevin said the Canadiens couldn’t afford to have Gomez hurt because the new collective bargaining agreement  doesn’t allow teams to buy out injured players.

Bergevin said the decision on Gomez was made after he saw the final draft of the CBA at 11 p.m. Saturday and he met with Gomez at 7:30 a.m. Sunday at the Bell Sports Complex in Brossard. Bergevin said Gomez was “professional” when he was given the news.

Gomez was considered a prime candidate for one of two compliance buyouts permitted in the new CBA but as recently as last week Bergevin said Gomez was part of the team.

Early results from an online hockeyinsideout.com poll question, suggest fans believe Bergevin made the the right call with Gomez. More than 85 per cent of the nearly 250 people who had cast their vote by mid-day Sunday supported the general manager’s decision.

The decision opens a spot for a forward on the Canadiens’ roster.

Bergevin also said contract negotiations continue on a new contract for defenceman P.K. Subban, who remains in Toronto. Bergevin travelled to Toronto Saturday for face-to-face talks with Subban and agent Don Meehan.

“We exchanged proposals and counter-proposals but there was no agreement,” said Bergevin. He said he had no plans to trade the restricted free agent.

The Canadiens opened camp in Brossard at 10 a.m. Sunday with 23 players. Missing were Tomas Plekanec  and Mike Commodore (day-to-day) and Petteri Nokelainen, who is a few weeks away from a return.

With the 119-day National Hockey League lockout officially over, the Canadiens kick off their training camp at 10 a.m. Sunday morning.

Twenty-seven players are taking part in the camp at the team’s practice facility in Brossard, on Montreal’s South Shore.

Missing from the list of 27 players is Canadiens defenceman P.K. Subban, who is a restricted free agent and remains unsigned. Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin said last Monday that it was his intention to sign Subban before camp. Talks between the team and Subban’s agent Don Meehan have been ongoing. Subban led the team in ice time last season.

The Hamilton Bulldogs players invited to camp are forwards Brendan Gallagher and Gabriel Dumont and defencemen Jarred Tinordi and Mike Commodore. Alex Galchenyuk, 18, the Canadiens first-round draft pick last June, is the youngest prospect at camp.

The Canadiens released their schedule today. They’ll face the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday at the Bell Centre to open the season.  They’ll end the 48-game season playing the Leafs on April 27 in Toronto. You can see the schedule by clicking here:

Canadiens head coach Michel Therrien will be available to the media later today.


  1. emann_222 says:

    Hey Everyone … good to finally be back to chatting hockey and posting new blog entries. And good to read all the comments on these posts here at H I/O.

    This whole Gomez thing has just been a sad event.I for one have always liked the guy, but there has definitely been a decline in his game over the past two years. Whether it be injury related or not, we can’t take away from the fact that he’s a stand up human being and we owe him that respect in the very least.

    Having said that, for Bergevin to state that this was purely a Cap hit move and had nothing to do with Scott’s performance over the past 2 seasons is ludicrous.

    I’ll personally miss Gomez as a person – just not as a player.

    For more of my thoughts on the Gomez buyout, please read my post at wp.me/p1n6pU-80

    Glad the game is back!

    Visit me at http://www.bleedbleublancrouge.com

  2. nunacanadien says:

    Maybe Bergevin should finish fixing the errors made by Gainey and Gauthier and now Bergevin. Stop signing these small tykes and these skinny wimps and these loud mouthed wannabees and sign real NHL players for once.

    Buy out Gionta’s contract as he is very similar to Gomez in many ways.

  3. DorvalTony says:

    When I find myself in times of trouble Marc Bergevin says to me “Tony there is hope, we’re Gomez-free. Gomez-free, Gomez-free, Gomez-free, Gomez-free,” speaking words of wisdom “We’re Gomez-free.”

  4. D Mex says:

    I get that Gomez will be paid to stay home to ensure he is not injured so that he can be bought out, but have a question :
    – IF he develops an ingrown toenail or has a freak accident around the house that has zero to do with the Habs, so is ” injured “, does the path remain clear for buy-out of his contract under the new CBA ??

    ALWAYS Habs –
    D Mex

    • coutNY says:

      I think it has to be a hockey related injury… since he currently has a clean bill of health, and is prohibited from playing hockey I think the Habs are in the clear. Only guessing…. Another thing I am not clear on is if he’ll eat up a roster spot? Which could come into play with the need for carrying an extra Defenseman or forward as the season progresses when injuries begin occurring.

    • nunacanadien says:

      He could be Markov junior, a perpetual albatross around Bergevin’s neck, too bad Bergevin and Molson didn’t hold out for three compliance buyouts, Gomez, Gionta and Markov.

      With Bourque and that other bad signing there is hope for them if we sign and replace Gomez, Gionta and Markov with real NHL players.

  5. doogie says:

    Going forward, the best GM’s are the guys who understand the business and economics of decisions relative to the cap. Neither Gomez nor the fan base can criticize this decision, it’s the right one.

    Swallow the bitter pill and move this thing forward.

  6. Habfan4lfe says:

    Goodbye Gomez it’s about time.

  7. Sportfan says:

    Maybe we can trade him to Dallas :P, I am not going to lie I was at work and got really caught off guard by this its too bad he couldn’t try and make up for his garbage seasons but also makes sense if he gets hurt we are boned.


  8. Tis Himself says:

    Stealing millions of dollars is one thing, but did he have to disgrace the number 11?

    • Saintpatrick33 says:

      Hopefully someone more worthy will wear that number next. Happy as hell to see him go his half assed lazy lackadaisical play all with a smile on his face made me dislike him immensely.

  9. RetroMikey says:

    I hope Bobby Gainey learned something from this Gomez fiasco and other signings he made while he was GM.
    He buried our franchise and it will take 3 or 4 seasons before we become a contender……hopefully.

    “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

  10. Chris says:

    So, we’d better make sure that Ryan White’s personal trainer doesn’t get anywhere near Scott Gomez for the next 5 months. Because if Gomez is hurt in off-ice training, the buyout goes kerplunk as well as he’s still a Montreal Canadiens player.

  11. frontenac1 says:

    Hola Amigos! Dirty Birds do it, Nate Silver, your 115 minutes are up! Go Pats and Go Niners!

  12. JF says:

    The best thing about the Gomez decision is that it shows Marc Bergevin has a plan and intends to stick to it – unlike Pierre Gauthier, who seemed always to be flying by the seat of his pants, so to speak – one improvised move after another to avert an impending catastrophe.

    Gomez does not figure in the long-term plans of the team; his contract would be bought out next summer regardless of what happened this season. By paying him to stay home, Bergevin avoids any possibility of injury or of his situation becoming a distraction. He also opens a roster spot. I hope this move will ensure that a young player like Eller, for example, finally has a real chance without being benched or given paltry minutes on the fourth line. I hope the move also sends a strong message to under-performing veterans like Rene Bourque.

    From his manner this morning, Bergevin obviously found it difficult to carry out this decision. Some have called it classless, but I don’t agree. Classless is a word that is flung around a lot, often without good reason. You could perhaps question the timing of the decision – now and not a few days ago – but I can understand Bergevin’s not wanting to do anything until the terms of the new CBA were fully ratified.

    The person I feel sorry for is Scott Gomez. Yes, he has plenty of money and he’ll be paid to do nothing, but he’s been trailing that albatross of a contract around with him for six years, and his disastrous season last year turned him into a laughing stock. If he wants to continue his career next year, he’ll have to find a way to stay in shape this season. Or perhaps he’ll get a media job; he’d be good at it, with his sense of humour and ready tongue. Anyway, all the best, Scotty.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Agree JF. However, a media job while it suits his personality would make sense, I think the way his career may end could make this difficult. At least in a Canadian market.

  13. Habhopeful says:

    Here’s an interesting discussion I’d like to bring to the table…

    Seeing as how the the draft lottery works by choosing from all non-playoff teams, that could be an opening for GM’s (preferably MB) to make trades and try to get a 1st rounder in return.

    Looking at that:

    1) Who are teams you would target if you were MB, to make a trade for a first rounder in return?

    2) Who would you dangle as trade bait or what assets would you be willing to include dependant on possible return?

    3) Would you try to make this trade prior to the season starting or mid-season?

    My opinion on all 3:

    -Primary: Toronto, Calgary, Islanders, Columbus, Anaheim, Edmonton.
    -Secondary: Colorado, Phoenix, Dallas, Detroit, Nashville, Florida, Winnipeg, Tampa, Devils, Buffalo, Ottawa.

    -Primary:Thomas Kaberle, Yannick Weber, Rene Bourque, Rafael Diaz, Danny Kristo.
    -Depending on return, (Or if playoffs are out of reach) would have to hesitantly consider the following: Erik Cole, Tomas Plekanec, David Desharnais, Andrei Markov, Lars Eller, Brian Gionta.

    3) I would try to make the trade very early in the season or during “pre-season”. After 15-20 games, everyone will have a good understanding of which teams would become playoff teams and which teams would not. And by the time non-playoff teams know they no longer are a playoff team, a bigger premium would be added to picking up a 1st rounder from non contending teams.


    I cant believe we still have under 1 week before hockey begins…oye vey…

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Interesting proposition.
      Regarding your secondary dangles, I would favour more than hesitation, as in extreme caution or perhaps even no-fly-zones. Take Cole, for instance. In exchange for the uncertainty of a 1st-rounder (they do sometimes bust after all) you’d be giving away the certainty — talent, 100% commitment, leadership etc — of a core player.

  14. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Funny timing for this article (from today’s Toronto Star) and the headline is mostly to get your attention.

    But it provides a huge amount of food for thought (not just about contact) and is exceptionally well written.


  15. HabinBurlington says:

    Gomez may not score the goals and assists anymore, but he sure does still draw the comments. Over 700 comments for the Gomez demotion.

  16. HabinBurlington says:

    Wow Altlanta has found a way to lose it appears.

    Edit: I forgot about the NFL Prevent Defense Scheme!

  17. Chris says:

    Just a note for those that follow the salary cap. The “Wade Redden Rule” is now in effect in the NHL, meaning that all one-way contracts count against the NHL cap even if the player is in the AHL.

    In terms of borderline Montreal Canadiens roster players, this rule means that Yannick Weber, Raphael Diaz, and Ryan White all count against the salary cap regardless of whether they are in Montreal or Hamilton.

    So even if there wasn’t the threat of losing a player for nothing via waivers, sending them down really doesn’t do anything for the team’s salary cap issues.

    • Habilis says:

      The first $900 000 of the contract does come off the cap though. In the case of the Habs you mentioned, that’s a significant chunk of their total salary.

  18. Mike D says:

    Pacioretty and Gionta react to the Gomez decision and PK’s contract situation.


    – Honestly yours
    Twitter: @de_benny

  19. likehoy says:

    can we re-sign gomez in 2 years and go FULL GOMEZ?

  20. frontenac1 says:

    @Dr.A. Physicals are for chumps. I know!

  21. SlovakHab says:

    People often mistakenly say that Gomez will be paid $5.5M to sit at home. Actually, it is a lot less.
    Firstly, for 48 games he gets paid a pro-rated $5.5M, which is just $3.22M ([5.5/82]*48)
    Secondly, he pays over 50% tax, so that $5.5M is more like $1.6M. Still massive amount of money but a lot less than what people think.

  22. naweed235 says:

    I know most here are celebrating Gomer’s departure and probably with good reason, but I suggest you go on RDS.com right now and click on the video links on the side and watch the Pacioretty interview. One of the most heartfelt interviews i’ve seen given by a Hab since the Koivu era. Go watch it.

  23. Chris says:

    Well, at least Bergevin is in good company. The Rangers are doing the same thing with Wade Redden, as his cap hit now counts against their NHL cap.

    Interestingly, they kept him on their NHL roster in September so they wouldn’t have to pay his salary in the AHL for a third season during the lockout.

  24. Loonie says:

    I think judging by the reaction to Bergevin’s moves that if PK isn’t signed in time for the regular season that he’ll(PK) get the blame here.

    Frank just shared that Kypreos is saying PK wants long term at $5 million per. If Bergevin’s holding firm on something else it’s he who deserves the blame for this.

    Subban over 5-7 years at $5 million annually is an ideal contract for a young star.

    • jhaley101 says:

      Posted in the wrong spot, easy does it there partner.

      • Loonie says:

        I think it was right to get Gomez off of the team and never said anything remotely close to indicating I still wanted him on the team.

        Might wanna give your own head a shake.

    • Habilis says:

      I agree with most of what you said, though you lost me at the end. PK is worth 5 mil, maybe 6 if you are buying free agent years. No way he is worth 7 yet.

      Either way though, I’m disappointed that PK has already missed a day of camp. This should be done by now.

      Edit: Oops, read your original post wrong it seems, my bad. We are in agreement then 😉

    • christophor says:

      If Bergevin is hesitating on a 6-7 year contract for approx. 5mill/year, then I’m worried about him.

      Having Subban and Pacioretty signed until the end of the ’18/’19 season for under 10 mill/year would be phenomenal, especially given that the rising cap would prove these to be not only bargains but steals by the time both enter their mid to late 20’s

  25. dr zgembo adislic says:

    any news, rumours on PK?? It’s frustrating right now, the season is just around the corner and our best D-Man is still unsigned. Boooooooooh

  26. weightman25 says:

    @mrhabby contracts are capped at 7 years for a new team or 8 years if resigning with the same team

  27. ZepFan2 says:

    Just saw this on the TSN boards.

    Scott GoHomez.


    Ka is a wheel.

    “Bring it back home to me baby”

    Bring it on Home

  28. Mavid says:

    first day of training camp..670 plus posts, loading of the site is slow and the dreaded “forbidden” is back…whooohooooooooo

  29. Mike D says:

    Alright, the Gomer news has kinda faded. Can we sign PK now?

    2 years at ~3mil per, or
    6+ years at ~5mil per

    Either way, just get this done.

    – Honestly yours
    Twitter: @de_benny

  30. Timo says:

    So, closing in on 700 comments re Gomer. Good stuff.

    Anything else worthy of news happened in the world today?

  31. Scott Royston says:

    WOW,some good news from only the first day of camp.

  32. CCL says:

    The only problem I had with Gomez. overpaid for his performance. having said that. this team is still weak in a lot of areas. have to wait and see if they can put together a playoff team.

  33. DrA says:

    Do we know if he failed the physical?

  34. Haberoooo13 says:

    Sorry if posted already…more callups to the Habs camp:
    Le Canadien a annoncé le rappel de cinq joueurs des Bulldogs de Hamilton, soit Louis Leblanc, Patrick Holland, Frédéric St-Denis, Mike Blunden et Michaël Bournival.

    Na Na Na Les Canadiens Les Canadiens

  35. Habfan10912 says:

    Larry Brooks of the NY Post just commented that Gomez was totally shocked when told of the decision this morning.


  36. Chris says:

    For the record, I am also 100% against buyouts in general. And not because I support the players that mail it in as Gomez has done.

    But I think there has to be a real penalty associated with these types of mistakes. Everybody talks about how we needed the contract term limit and limitations on second contracts or the salary structure gets blown up.

    I obviously disagree. The rules are in place, and if anything I would tighten them up. If you sign a player, there is no way to get out from under that player’s contract if they don’t perform.

    No sending players to the minors (like Wade Redden or Mike Commodore), no sending them to Europe (like Marcus Nilson or Cristobal Huet) and no retirements voiding the rest of the contract (like Marian Hossa and Roberto Luongo, in all likelihood).

    I want to see teams pay for their poor managment decisions. These amnesty buyouts are nothing more than a get out of jail free card. It rewards teams like Montreal, Vancouver, Tampa Bay and others who have created nasty cap pickles for themselves at the expense of teams who were actually financially prudent.

    As a Habs fan, I am of course happy to see Scott Gomez gone. As a fan, I was never more bitter or disillusioned than the day that he was acquired in the first place, so I’d by quite the hypocrite to be sad to see him leave.

    But as a fan of the NHL, I think they have to stop with this BS. I do not like the way this has gone down, nor do I like the one-sided nature of things.

    Why not have each team granted one amnesty buyout for the team and one for the players. Each team can have one player opt out of their contract if they feel like the team hasn’t lived up to its obligations.

    Scott Gomez gets cut because he didn’t live up to his contract. Fine.

    Why can’t John Tavares opt out of his contract (even for 0% compensation on what’s remaining) because he has become disillusioned with the Islanders?

    Contracts MUST mean something, or we’re just going to head to another lockout in 8 years time. If an ugly contract impedes a team for a decade, then we won’t see any more of the damned things offered in the first place, which is the ultimate result that I think most of us would like to see.

    But if rich teams like Montreal, the Rangers, Toronto, Detroit, Vancouver or Philadelphia can just buy their way out of trouble every time we have a CBA negotiation, we might as well throw the whole idea of salary caps and contracts right out the window.

    • knob says:

      Agreed 100%. And I’m glad that teams can no longer bury cap catastrophes in the AHL

    • Loonie says:

      But teams are afforded the luxury of eating salary and cap space in order to move a high salary player now.

      Another move toward the big market, big money teams that will allow them to erase mistakes.

    • Mike D says:

      I’m in favour of the theory that salary cap get-out-of-jail-free cards are wrong, but with the cap dropping by about 6mil next season, was there really any other choice? At least one that didn’t involve some sort of ‘circumvention’?

      – Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

    • Da Hema says:

      It seems to me that teams DO “pay for their management decisions.” The Gomez trade will stain Gainey’s reputation for the rest of his management career. The organization too will “pay for this decision” because Gomez will get paid millions not to play.

      • Mike D says:

        And we lost McDonagh in the process.

        – Honestly yours
        Twitter: @de_benny

      • Chris says:

        On the scale of thins, the loss of reputation for Bob Gainey is not really hampering the Montreal Canadiens this season, as Gainey is no longer with the team.

        Scott Gomez was acquired to play for the Montreal Canadiens, not Bob Gainey. $5.5 million for a team that rolls in money is not much of a penalty, to be honest.

    • mrhabby says:

      With contracts max 5years the need to hide is less than before the new cba.

    • Bill says:

      Very cogently argued, but I still can’t agree.

      Even with a buy-out, there is still a penalty for the team. They have to pay the money no matter what. And a regular buy-out – not the amnesty buy-out – retains a cap hit, albeit a reduced one. So there is a still a penalty, even for the wealthy teams.

      Buy-outs are not especially onerous for the players. They get the bulk of their money and they can sign with a new team. I remember Darcy Tucker cashing in nicely. Colby Armstrong will be collecting extra money this year, playing for the Habs while still being paid by the Leafs. So I’m not feeling too bad for them, though if they were simply being jettisoned WITHOUT getting paid – as can happen in the NFL or NBA – I’d feel differently.

      Finally, as Mike D pointed out, there was no way NOT to have an amnesty buyout with the cap going down as it is in the new CBA.

      Players and owners agreed on this in the CBA, so it’s all on the up and up. I can sympathize with the idea of banning buy-outs altogether, but you know … the wealthy teams deserve some flexibility I think. They are the ones who are helping fund the smaller market teams, and they really got little else out of this new CBA.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

  37. ooder says:

    I wonder, if Cole retires because he is so butt hurt over the evils of the new CBA, can he then unretire and sign a higher contract?

    The 2010-11 Stanley Cup was not won, but given

  38. stevieray says:

    Gomez gone !!…nuff said 🙂

  39. Boomer says:

    I know it is a bit early but has anyone seen the free agency for 2013?
    Its a good FA list. If none of these guys are re-signed.
    There are good Dmen as well. Interesting

  40. Habs64 says:

    Eric Macramalla ‏@EricOnSportsLaw
    Gomez grievance: NHLPA could argue healthy player w/ no off-ice issues cant be sent home to preserve amnesty; contrary to spirit of contract

    • Chris says:

      And it begins.

    • ooder says:

      so then he gets scratched every single game, and you hope he doesn’t pull a hamstring during his workouts

      The 2010-11 Stanley Cup was not won, but given

    • habstrinifan says:

      Well I was right again!!!!!!!!!!!!! Geez!

    • Mike D says:

      I’m not a lawyer, but I think Macramalla is wrong. If the team is still paying him his full wage I don’t see how they’ve broken the law.

      As Ooder said, they could just scratch him every game anyways without officially sending him home. This is sort of like a permanent scratch.

      – Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

      • habstrinifan says:

        He is ‘musing’ that there might be cause for grievance… good lawyering if you ask me.

      • Habs64 says:

        He didn’t say break the law. Just contrary to spirit of a contractual agreement to play for a team that signs you barring an injury.

        • Mike D says:

          Tomato-tomahto. I could have worded it better, but you understand the point I was making. Substitute ‘breaking the law’ with ‘committed a labour foul’.

          – Honestly yours
          Twitter: @de_benny

      • Chris says:

        Scratched players still get to travel with the team, practice with the team and take part in all activities other than the games.

        The issue here is the denial of the opportunity to work as a hockey player. The money being paid out is obviously one thing, but I suspect that contracts are worded more delicately than “Here is $5.5 million for 2012-13 and you may have to clean toilets, shovel snow or sit at home”.

        • habstrinifan says:

          “denial of the opportunity to work as a hockey player.”

          Exactly. Once one ceases the ‘gleeful’ kneejerk fan reaction (which I had and still have) there must be allowed the debate as to whether this is not contrary to the ‘spirit’ of the worker-emplyer agreement on the following frounds.
          a) what you said above.
          b) unintentionally circumventing player movemnet restrictions/penalties/ etc… (waivers;demotion;injury reserve..etc).

        • Mike D says:

          That’s a given, Chris. In this case, I see it all as part and parcel with being “permanently scratched”. No sense in traveling or practicing with the team.

          If the team is responsible to allow a contracted player the continued opportunity to work as a hockey player, then the player should also be held accountable to be worthy of that merit (injuries are an exception). Gomez failed in that regard and the team responded with this move. I see it as fair.

          – Honestly yours
          Twitter: @de_benny

  41. frontenac1 says:

    Adios Senior Gomez. Viva La Revolucion! Los Habs Para Siempre!!

  42. Habfan10912 says:

    Off topic while waiting for news on PK. Has a NFL coach had a worse first half in the playoffs as Pete Carroll has had today?


    • Loonie says:

      Yeah. Dom Capers last night.

      Mike Smith last season, Mike Smith the season before that.

      Redemption day apparently.

      • Habfan10912 says:

        LOL. True.
        <—— flu induced short term memory loss.


        • Loonie says:

          Haha. Mine’s a hangover. Big Packers fan.

          • Habfan10912 says:

            You mean my Super Bowl pick. I suck at football too.


          • Loonie says:

            Haha. I know my football and predicted a big Falcons win because of the Seahawks starting the game at 10am their time.

            Having said that I thought Dom Capers would do the right thing last night and have a spy on Kaepernick to avoid giving up big chunks of yardage against the read option or scrambles. His stupidity made me look stupid.

  43. Stevie.Ray says:

    Winnipeg hates Kane. They’re all over him for not showing up 3 days early for camp. I would love to have him.

    • Loonie says:

      And by Winnipeg I’m assuming you mean a large part of their media?

    • Haberoooo13 says:

      It’s common knowledge that Winnipeggers are more fans of the Undertaker than Kane.

      Seriously though, I do like Kane quite a bit as a player but Habs would have to monitor a lot of his alleged off-ice stuff if he were to come to Hab-land!

      Na Na Na Les Canadiens Les Canadiens

    • naweed235 says:

      you do realize that the Jets would hang up the phone unless you are offering them Subban in return right? I don’t know if it’s worth it. If that were to happen, I guess it comes down to the organization deciding whether they need more help on D or in a Forward position, since it is pretty much a guarantee that both players will be stars in the league and they both have “problem player” tags on their names…

      • Loonie says:

        The days of the Habs only having one or two desirable prospect or players are over.

        Anybody not drafted by Bergevin or not given a long contract extension by Bergevin are expendable. On top of that, we don’t know about his willingness to trade his own guys because we haven’t seen him work much.

        One could reasonably assume that Price, Pacioretty and Galchenyuk are safe.

        EVERYONE else is fair game. Plekanec, Gionta, Markov, Gallagher, Beaulieu, Tinordi, Leblanc, Desharnais, Cole, Eller. Hell, maybe even Gorges.

        This team has a large number of assets available for trade and if Evander Kane really is a problem child that the Jets want to be rid of, we have the assets to get him.

  44. helluva habs fan says:

    Maybe we’ll see Gomez back in a Devils jersey next year. Lou might invite him to camp and sign him for 10% of his current salary.

    • Mike D says:

      That’s assuming he even wants to play anymore. For about 1mil on a one year deal, tons of teams would take a flyer on him.

      I’m not convinced by any means that he even wants to continue playing. He’s won rookie of the year, two Stanley Cups, and has tons of money. Maybe he doesn’t feel the incentive to play and that’s why he looked so passionless the last two years. Who knows.

      More importantly….it’s not out problem anymore.

      – Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

  45. naweed235 says:

    god it’s just painful to see how a player’s size seems to be the only criteria people rate players on, on this site. No one who has watched both Eller and DD play (assuming they are not kookoo), can possibly say they would rather have Eller in a do or die situation over DD. DD is clutch and has dominated at every level he played despite everyone saying he can’t do it. Eller on the other hand, well he has 2 or 3 games out of 20 where he looks like he can be a superstar and disappears for the rest…
    If we have to trade one, no doubt Eller would be the logical choice

    • Loonie says:

      Funny how mitigating circumstances never seem to enter the equation. A player on a line with Travis Moen and Andrei Kostitsyn is going to score less points than a player sandwiched between Erik Cole and Max Pacioretty.

      Not saying Eller would be as good or better, and I say that because we don’t know. Unfair to compare them.

      • helluva habs fan says:

        True, but at some point, Eller needs to show he’s that good. That’s how DD got the job in the first place, he made the coach put him there.

        • Loonie says:

          Advanced metrics show Eller as Plekanec’s equal.

        • Boomer says:

          There was a big improvement in Eller from his first year of play. I’m not sure if others would agree with me on this, but I am of the mind that Eller has the potential to be as good as or better than Plekanec. Time will tell.

          • naweed235 says:

            that’s exactly the problem… so many times we have traded good players because of the “potential” of other players to step up and replace them… well, safe to say now that those potentials rarely developped here

          • Boomer says:

            I didn’t say anything about trading, just pointing out Eller’s improvement and potential. But I get where you’re coming from.

          • Loonie says:

            It isn’t potential. He’s made the most of his opportunity. Time for him to get more minutes.

          • Boomer says:

            He still has room for improvement as a player Tom. He hasn’t hit his ceiling. But I agree he needs more ice time to see where he’s at and to hit that ceiling.

          • Loonie says:

            Everybody has room for improvement. But comparing him to other players on the roster without taking into account what they’ve done with their respective opportunities is short sighted and unfair.

            Based on his ice time and linemates. He’s been Plek’s equal. And that’s not taking into account their respective linemates.

            It’s logical to expect better from Eller than Pleknaec in the same role at this point.

            And that shouldn’t be ignored.

          • Boomer says:

            What I mean about Eller is I think he improved as a player since his 1st year and I don’t think he’s done. Every player can improve, yes but at a certain point you can look at a player and say “it ain’t gonna get much better than this” regardless of ice time or linemates. I do not believe Eller is there yet. He’s still growing as a player and I believe he has the ability to continue to grow and be Pleks equal or maybe better. I’m in no way saying he isn’t good now, I like Eller and I think he deserves more ice time. But IMO the best is yet to come 🙂

    • Haberoooo13 says:

      Even Spock would find that illogical.

      Na Na Na Les Canadiens Les Canadiens

    • Stevie.Ray says:

      Obviously, DD is better than Eller. But DD is too good for the third line, nor would he be appropriate in a shutdown center role.

    • helluva habs fan says:

      I’m a big Eller fan but I agree with you completely. DD is the gamer to this point.
      This needs to be Eller’s year – time to show everyone that “upside” we keep hearing about.

      • Loonie says:

        Not gonna happen as a 3rd line centreman. Wasting his talent.

        • helluva habs fan says:

          He needs to seize the opportunity like everyone else that came before him. It’s always been up to him. With Gomez out of the picture he’ll get a chance this year, whether by injury or one of the other two slumping.

          • Loonie says:

            He’s done his job about as well as he can. Great production considering his situational ice time and linemates.

    • HardHabits says:

      Different players different trajectories. DD had to prove all the naysayers wrong and he did it at every level. Eller was acquired via a trade for Halak after the play-off run. The Habs should have sent Eller to Hamilton but BG/PG had to save face.

      I like both players but they have different skill-sets. DD has undeniably put up better numbers last season but had the Habs two top power forwards. Mind you I still give DD lots of credit for both those wingers’ production.

      Eller on the other hand had his best games with Moen and AK46 but that line had a shorter shelf life than Blunden-Nokia-Darche.

      Hopefully the Habs will make decisions based on performance and not perceptions.

      • Loonie says:

        Which is why Plekanec should be traded for value.

        Per shift numbers show that Eller is his equal and could potentially be superior with an upgrade in linemates.

        Just needs the opportunity. So in my opinion. If Eller’s fitness level is close to or better than Plekanec’s, trade him(plek).

    • neumann103 says:

      I am jumping in late on this dead thread just because this suggestion is “kookoo”

      Eller > Desharnais

      “Et le but!”

  46. mrhabby says:

    Freeing up cap space and a roster spot is just what the doctor ordered..mb is no dummy and knows the moves he has to make. I can see all the older guys like markov,gionta, kaberle and others moving on very soon….Habs need to get younger and more highly skilled..

    Playoffs or not Habs need to get younger and more skilled up front..do it mb.

    • Mr. Biter says:

      Lets leave the mind open on Gionta. \He needs someone to get him the puck and then he’s deadly.

      Mr. Biter
      No Guts No Glory

    • savethepuck says:

      Markov is the longest running Hab. Irks me that everyone wants to throw him out like he’s useless trash. Why don’t we see what he can do when he’s healthy before we are so quick to discard him.

      “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
      Carey Price

  47. helluva habs fan says:

    OK, here are some hypotheticals to consider for later this season.

    Lets say this Cole retirement talk doesn’t blow over. He’s having a great season again, although Habs sit arount 11th, 12th in the conference. Trade deadline looms. What do you do?
    Think of the interest he’d generate: a big, fast, skilled goal scorer who works his tail off every shift. Teams would way overpay for what he could bring to a cup contender.

    Let me clarify, I want to see Erik Cole in a Habs sweater for at least the duration of his contract. It’s just fun thinking about these things.

  48. commandant says:

    We’ve brought on board a new writer. Russell McKenzie’s first article looks at the five sorriest franchises in the NHL.


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

  49. Ron says:

    Lavoie and McKenzie both tweet that Berger and Desjardins put on waivers. Presumably for purposes of contract termination.

    Why this ?????

  50. Bill says:

    Atlanta just destroying Seattle… Ouch.

  51. Boomer says:

    So how does the new cba work? Do we get 2 buyouts every year or what?

  52. Danno says:

    As seen in this clip, Habs fans had mixed reactions to the news Scott Gomez was being sent home:



    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

  53. habstrinifan says:

    Bear with me on this convoluted post. I just read where Boston is going to ‘suspend’ Tomas to get cap room since Thomas ‘withdrew’ his services.

    Evil thought! Could Gomez delve deep into the CBA and ‘sue’ the Canadiens and the league. And also could the Canadiens be in breach of, if not the letter of the law on players’ movement/demotions etc…. at least the spirit of the law.

    It seems odd that the NHL would condone where a club can take an active player and not ‘send him down’ (waivers etc). place him on an injured reserve list etc, but simply ensconced him on his sofa at home unavailable for work.
    I support Gomez being off the team but it seems that this method could be open to being contested.

    Unless there was a ‘hush hush’ agreement between Gomez and Bergevin that Gomez wont go to Hamilton (possibly get hurt) and Bergevin wont suspend him (for not reporting). So essentially MB agreed to pay Gomez and ‘pretend’ he’s on his roster for all ‘accounting’ purposes, which Gomez is.

    It seems really odd that a league would allow a team to simply say go home to a player.

    • Loonie says:

      It’s a vacation for Gomez. Hard to see him making waves.

      Interesting thought though. What if he decides to retire because of this?

    • commandant says:

      As long as Gomez is paid…. he can’t sue the Habs.

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

      • habstrinifan says:

        But do you see my point? Essentially you are kinda hiding a player. Let’s just say for instances I am a GM who keeps my salary base 3mill under the cap. And every now and then I send home a veteran to sit at home and bring up a rookie on my 23 man roster.

        I assume that while cap space is not relieved with this move, that ‘roster space’ is. As some are saying already it makes room for one more ‘newcomer’.

        • otter649 says:

          Bruins can suspend Thomas but the cap space that Thomas’s contract takes up which is 5 million (3 million cash) will still apply since the contract was signed after Thomas turned 35 – So it does not matter that Thomas withdrew his services or retired. The cap hit remains unless there was a change in The CBA…….

          • habstrinifan says:

            I think you are wrong here. The Boston’s GM is saying they have to suspend Thomas so as to clear his cap space since he’s not playing voluntarily.

          • otter649 says:

            Thomas is suspended because he did not show up for training camp therefore Boston does not have to pay his 3 million dollar salary with a 5 million cap hit. The cap hit remains since the contract was a 35+ contract & salary cap hit remains if the player plays out his contract or not. CapGeek shows Thomas salary on The Bruins list of players salaries……

  54. Pricey Habs says:

    Good day for the future of the Canadiens’ Cap. Starting to wonder though… what’s going to happen if Cole decides to retire at the end of the year? Even bigger question mark will be Bourque’s performance. We could be stuck with two massive places to fill on the top two line (1st line RW & 2nd line LW). It might be time to consider shipping off one of our three current centers (Desharnais, Plekanec, Eller) at year’s end.

    • Loonie says:

      In house options. Collberg should only need a part of next season in Hamilton if that before being ready for a top six role.

      Galchenyuk might be ready right now.

      Gallagher might be ready but I’d be willing to bet that Galchenyuk and Collberg get big roles first.

      • Habs64 says:

        Kristo looking great as well.

      • Boomer says:

        Is Collberg committed to play in Hamilton next year? Even if he makes it he might not be ready for top 6 role after part of a season. Anythings possible though.

        • Loonie says:

          I don’t think it’s committed but if I remember correctly I think that’s the idea.

          Leading scorer for the Swedes at the WJHC and tons of skill to boot.

          Logically he’ll probably need a full season again in Sweden or in Hamilton before being ready though.

          • Boomer says:

            For sure, I love the kid. I really hope he does. It’s a great league in sweden but Hamilton would be great for him. He could get used the the style of play and smaller ice.

      • 24 Cups says:

        I’m betting that Collberg will stay in Sweden one more year and then play in the WJC in his native country.

        • Loonie says:

          Replied to your question on the previous page Steve. Changed my username for professional reasons. Don’t want my name coming up in google searches with a bunch of mud flinging attached to it.

      • habstrinifan says:

        Hey Loonie I wanna make a bet with you! Gallagher makes the team before Collberg and becomes more integral a player. I am hedging on Galchenyuk as far as ‘long term’ star status but I wont be surprised if HABS play it safe and retrun Galchenyuk while keeping Gallagher. Much like when they first recalled Weber while keeping Subban because he had a more ‘complicated role’. Friendly bet eh!

    • habstrinifan says:

      I dont want to get pilloried but I have a suspicion (and I dont chastise Cole for this..the new CBA certainly reduces the value of the contract he signed in good faith last year…..clawback) hat this is the first gambit in a well discussed and thought out plan for Cole to renegitate his contract dollars upwards. As he said in his remarks, he met his part of the bargain.

      Remember this post!

      • commandant says:

        He can’t renegotiate an existing contract. Not possible under this CBA or the last one.

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

        • habstrinifan says:

          Thanks. Then I am wrong like hell! But wait! Can you ‘extend’ or negotiate an ensuing contract while your current contract has years left on it? Hope you dont mind if I do more research. I always respect your expertise but cant help but wonder why a player who is ‘surpassing’ his expected performance cant, in agreement with his club and within cap rules, get more money.

          • Mike D says:

            For the same reason the team can’t ask a player who is not meeting his expected performance to take less money during his contract. NHL contracts are guaranteed – no re-tooling….or tweaking, allowed.

            – Honestly yours
            Twitter: @de_benny

          • 24 Cups says:

            Contract extensions are only possible in the last year of a deal. I’m not sure the Habs will want to extend Cole in 2.5 years, certainly not for big coin.

          • habstrinifan says:

            Thanks guys (Mike D/24cups/C0mmandant) for your corrections. As you can tell I am simply being an evil but not so smart genius today.
            I love to cover all bases… my software engineering career showing.

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