In the other sports news, Canadiens got a W

Gomez
A few hours before all those suits hoisted the Lombardi Trophy, your Montreal Canadiens thrilled a Sunday afternoon crowd by actually winning a hockey game on home ice.
Monday finds them back in 14th place.

Pat Hickey’s game story

Quotes from the room

Dave Sidaway’s game photos

Red Fisher says it’s over

Jack Todd concurs

Pierre Ladouceur’s game report card

Sean Gordon’s game story

139 Comments

  1. solomio says:

    Wait a minute..all this talk of Gomer to the Dogs… I mean he must have something in his contract to protect him against such an action no? If not then at the end of this season inform Gomer of your intention to start him in Hamilton next year.
    I would bet that Gomer will not report and would rather retire than do so. He can certainly not have money concerns for the rest of his life. Et voila!

    “I figure PG has one or 2 moves left to bring the Habs that extra step closer to perhaps being the best in the league.” – Einstein

  2. I wish people would stop all the stupid talk about sending Gomez down to Hamilton now. There’s not a player on the team who has a bad thing to say about him, his attitude is strong and there is no point at all in saving his salary this year by sending him down. I can’t think if a single scenario where he wouldn’t be spending the last 2 years of his contract in Hamilton because they’ll need the cap space next year, but he’s here for the year and we should do what his own teammates are doing. Support him.

  3. 123456 says:

    not sure i lov ethe idea of the habs going after nash – but if they did it would be a signal the AHL is awaiting mr gomez’s arrival..unless the habs can move him. i think nash would also mean pleks/dd/eller would remain the top 3 centers.

    i’d like to see the habs keep moen – he is the only UFA i want back. but i’d still trade him to accumulate picks and hope he can come back for next season.

    i’d also move budaj if possible – never liked the signing and he has done nothing to change my mind.

    • Before anyone gets stars in their eyes about Nash, he has a no movement clause and won’t waive it for Montreal. Also, the Leafs are offering combinations of Schenn, Kulemein, Bozak and Kadri, along with a pick or picks. Not going to happen.

  4. habfan53 says:

    I have not given up the HOPE but realistically I accept we won’t make the playoffs.

    So Having said that for next year
    THE KEEPERS: MaxPac, DD, Cole, Leblanc, Eller, Bourque and Blunden up front. On Defence P.K., Gorges, Emelin and Diaz. In goal obviously Price .
    GONE: Gill, Campoli, Darche and Gomez
    TRADEABLE: Moen, Pleks, Kostitsyn, Gionta (as well as Gill )
    INJURY ??: Markov and White
    That leaves Nokaleinen and Kaberle both utility players.
    PROSPECTS : Gallagher, Beaulieu, Tinordi, Bornival and Palushaj.

    Before everyone jumps down my throat in regards to Plekanecs I like the guy he is one of our better players but REALISTICALLY he is a second line centre and we have that with Desharnais and Eller. I am hoping that DD,will centre the first line (with pax and Cole ) next year and bring along Bournival .
    As for AK he will probably go somewhere and score 30-35 goals because he will be used properly with constant linemates and POWERPLAY TIME.

    I would like to see both Markov and White play this year to see where we stand with them .

    In regards to Randy Cunnyworth i would like to see him stay pay for Rosetta stone / Berlitz or Private tutor I don’t care. But unfortunately politics will get involved (read Rejean Tremblay et all) However if he does go my choice would be Denis Savard.

    As for Gauthier I don’t have a big problem with him. His biggest screw up this year was Markov. I will give him the benefit of the doubt and say he was misinformed by the doctors (see Crosby) when he saw that Markov was going to be delayed it was too late, he tried Campoli but he got hurt in the first game.
    He has gotten the club bigger Cammi vs Bourque, Emelin
    He did sign Gorges mid season.

    The one thing that we the fans have to learn is that if Montreal is going to bring in a new coach or G.M. (like a Brisebois) then you have to give them time to learn and make mistakes that takes 3 years. We gave up to soon on Vigneault, Therien and Julien.

    The only NO-NO’S are Patrick Roy and Pierre McGuire

    to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

    • 123456 says:

      i don’t get AK – he is third on the team in goals. recently has taken bad penalties… made bad passes… he just looks aweful at times but then once every third game he has a great period. he has it in him to be a very good player. i’d like to keep him.

      PG has not made terrible moves – markov was a gamble but you have to gamble to win. maybe he comes back next season and puts up his usual numbers.

      i also do not see bourque as a keeper – i liked getting rid of cammy but bourque has not impressed

      • habfan53 says:

        I would like to keep AK as well I feel that he has been misused here, that is what I was trying to say. Maybe Pleks and Bourque for the rest of the season.
        The other problem is he is making 3.5 this year he will probably want 4+ which is fine IF he shows up every game.

        to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

  5. slamtherimtim says:

    i thought for sure PG was going to get canned today , he will be here to the end of the year , for sure now , can anyone fire Mr Molson

  6. Laramy87 says:

    So sending Palushaj back to Hamilton, who is coming back from injury?

    I felt he played very well yesterday, wish he could have stayed and had another shot with Eller and Leblanc

  7. manu07 says:

    I agree. The Habs like with AP, LL and Eller deserved another game together. They were very effective Sunday. Gomez should finish the season as a a bull dog.

    • Chuck says:

      Gomez on the team isn’t going to get them to the playoffs, so having him play out the year on the team isn’t going to hurt. Sending him to Hamilton for the remainder of a non-playoff year would be the least-classy thing that the organization could do.

      • arcosenate says:

        Classy? This guy needs to turn things around ASAP, a taste of the “A” might just do that, something has to be done, running him out night after night hasn’t changed a thing. There are others that obviously do his job better and that should become the only criteria applied at this point. Put the fear of god in him, maybe that’ll make a difference.

        Watching Markov work out yesterday on tape was frightening as well, as one of the commentators put it, “Do we even know if this guy can play anymore, it’s been 2 years.”

        We need to make some serious decisions in a very short period of time and worrying about what people might think of us is the last of our worries.

  8. b_whalen13 says:

    The Fourth Period says that the blue jackets are willing to move Rick Nash and would most likely look to get a top young player, a prospect and a first-round pick in exchange for Nash. What do you think would be a good package by the Habs? I was thinking something like plekanec, palushaj, and our 1st round pick might do it?

  9. skoalbandit says:

    just a thought.
    Columbus will get the 1st pick.
    if we get the 2nd pick, would you (or columbus) trade that pick for rick nash.
    giving columbus both 1st and 2nd overall

  10. cuzzie says:

    White and Palushaj sent to Hamilton.

    Mr. Bad Example!

  11. Ali says:

    1 year for Gomez. Maybe he should go back to wearing 91, things were working out a lot better for him when he wasn’t desecrating the number of the player who wore it before him every time he laced em up.

  12. shiram says:

    How much does Emelin get next year? Alot of talk about new contracts next year, alot of our talented youth are set to re-negotiate, and while the Price and Subban have been discussed alot already, not much has been said of the Russion revelation.

    Someone posted on here that Emelin was making about 2 millions on the KHL last year, and he is presently making 984k$ with a signing bonus just under 300k.
    He really did not generate much offence, and has struggled with adjusting to smaller ice, and sometimes playing on his off-side.
    He is still a RFA.
    I’m hoping he can be tied up, but is he worth a 2 millions+ deal on multi year?

    What about Eller, what kind of deal does he get? Blunden, White, Diaz and Palushaj are all set for a new contract, and all are RFA.

    It will be very interesting to see the organization moves, which kid is kept, which is not.

    • G-Man says:

      If Gorges is worth $4 mil, Emelin is worth at least $3mil.
      Eller, Blunden, White, Diaz and especially Palushaj do not have any bargaining power, but will probably be treated fairly by PG. (Yes, he will still be at the helm come the end of the season unless some superstar assistant gm calls up Molson to say he wants the job.)
      Space will be made for the new arrivals as usual, but don’t expect a huge turnover. I think only 4 or 5 players are left from that original purge after the 100th season.

      • shiram says:

        Eller has some power, he is the only center with size, and he has greatly improved his game, on both sides of the rink. Not a break deal for him, but maybe something like Pacioretty got?

      • ebourcier says:

        If gorges is worth 4 emelin is worth atleast 3? are you secretly pg? gorges is the future captain of the habs, an amazingly solid an reliable shut down D-Man, and a great teamate. Emelin is showing potensial, and effectivly uses his size to crush people, but he still makes alot of mistakes for his age…. if they add an estabilshed dman over the offseason him or diaz might not even crack that lineup next season.. he wont sign for any more than 1.5

        Ebour

        • G-Man says:

          Gorges is the most over-rated player the Habs have, but, barring Gomez, is the most over-paid as well. He brings zero offense- oops- a stunning 12 points in 52 games- overall, 71 points in 417 games. This “future captain” stuff is crap, too. Komisarek was considered that, too, before the Habs let him walk.
          Emelin brings more than Gorges while adjusting to NHL rinks. See that goal yesterday? More to come from him, including bone-crushing-don’t-carry-the-puck-down-my-side-or-you’ll-pay type hits.

          • jedimyrmidon says:

            Gorges is the most over-rated? I’m under the clear impression that no one else on the team could replace him on the 1st pairing (not including Markov). I actually think people probably underestimate his value: the Habs are in sore need of steadiness on the D and he’s pretty much the only steady guy. In fact, if the Habs had even 1 other steady stay-at-home defenseman, I bet the team would have won more of those 1 goal games.

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        You don’t understand the concept of restricted free agency. Salaries in the NHL are based on seniority. Gorges got $3.9M because he was unrestricted.

        Emelin in his second year would have to take whatever the team offers (as long as it is at least 10% more than this year), or go back to Russia.


        Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

        • G-Man says:

          I do understand it. However, Emelin is already 25 or 26 and is the Habs best hitting Dman right now. He was making $2mil tax-free in the KHL and came over for half that. Do you really think playing a lot more games than over there will leave him inclined to sign for less?
          And, if he does go back to Russia, who is the replacement?

    • avatar_58 says:

      I like Emelin – but treat him like a rookie, not a UFA. He doesn’t deserve a huge raise after a single season.

    • Chris says:

      Emelin probably gets $1.5-2.5 M next season on a one year deal. He will be an unrestricted free agent (27 years old in summer 2013) the following summer, so there’s no reason to tie himself to a short-term deal for small coin if he can improve on this transitional year and then head to free agency.

  13. JF says:

    Nice win, although it left a bit of a hollow feeling, since we all know it means nothing. But I liked what I saw from the players whom I see as our core going forward – Plekanec, Price, Subban, Cole, Pacioretty, Desharnais. Gorges, Kostitsyn (?), Leblanc, Emelin. Palushaj also looked good, and Yannick Weber, if he isn’t to be part of the core, should bring something good in return. I wonder if he played instead of Diaz because the Canadiens are shopping him. He and Diaz are similar players, and it would be good to exchange one of them for a big, stay-at-home defenceman who could clear the front of the net.

    With this core and the prospect of Tinordi, Beaulieu, and Gallagher among others coming along in the next couple of years, we don’t look too bad going forward. But how quickly things can be turned around will depend very largely on how the team is managed. Everyone is calling for Pierre Gauthier’s head, but IMO the Habs could do worse than stay with him unless there is a very good candidate available to replace him. The names of Julien Brisebois and Claude Loiselle have been tossed around, but at the moment we don’t know how capable either would be of taking over and handling the pressure in Montreal. Aside from the gigantic blunder of firing Jacques Martin when he did, Gauthier has actually done a decent job. Even the JM firing will turn out to be for the best in the long run if we land that elusive big centre we’ve been missing for a decade and a half. The actual moves Gauthier has made have mostly been good, and I think we have to give him a pass on the Markov situation because it’s inconceivable that he would have handed out that contract if the doctors had left him with any shadow of doubt concerning Markov’s ability to play.

    It’s the moves Gauthier didn’t make that concern me more than the ones he did – the failure to have a Plan B in place in the event of Markov’s not being able to start the season, the failure to put together an effective fourth line, the dismissal of concerns about size and toughness. The Cammalleri trade suggests that he has seen the light on that one. He also signed Erik Cole and persuaded Emelin to come over; these players add a lot of size, toughness, and grit. But we started the season with little more than the skeleton of a team, with an inexperienced defence, and with a huge hole in the fourth line.

    So I’m on the fence about Gauthier. If the Habs can get someone better, fine. If not, I’d rather stick with Gauthier than recycle one of the Savards or go with someone who has no experience as a GM or assistant GM.

    The other question is who will coach the team next year. Randy Cunneyworth will likely be a good NHL coach before too long, but it won’t be in Montreal. He has not turned the team around or gotten them playing well consistently (they were more consistent under JM). And, quite apart from the language question, the fact that he has been in charge of the powerplay all season is in itself enough to damn him in my eyes.

    I don’t think the Habs should try another rookie coach at this point considering that they will likely have quite an inexperienced team next year. I’d like to see Guy Carbonneau given another shot. When he was fired, the team was in a tailspin, but it seemed to emerge later that this was largely due to off-ice and locker room issues. Gainey spent a couple of months behind the bench and disliked what he saw enough to send almost half the team packing in the off-season. Carbonneau had a great record until the mid-point of his last season; with hindsight, it hardly seems fair that he was fired when the team hit its first major stumbling-block. I think he learned a lot from his first stint behind the bench and has it in him to be a very good coach.

  14. ont fan says:

    1. Holland,Chiarrell, Tallon, Gillis
    2.Brisbois,Loiselle
    3.Not Lemaire or Boucher…tired of boring,trap,dump and chase hockey..somebodys ass. coach on a pro team that plays aggressive hockey.

  15. Les Canayens says:

    Really liked Leblanc’s plays in last game. He’s getting more aggressive in puck battle and not afraid to go to the net, with skills en plus! Hope he does more of those when the games will count eventually.

    ░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░
    ❝ I can’t really hear what Jeremy says, because I’ve got my two Stanley Cup rings plugging my ears.❞

    • Kooch7800 says:

      He is a good player both offensively and defensively. He will be a full time hab next year. I would prefer to see him at Centre than Wing though. He will get bigger and we need size up the middle.
      Eller has size but is still very much a work in progress. I think LL will develop faster than Eller IMHO. LL’s hockey sense is unreal

  16. Les Canayens says:

    Quite an improvement of PK’s pugilistic abilities compared to his last fight vs Marchand. I guess hanging out with Laraque might’ve helped after all.

    http://media.mmgdailies.topscms.com/images/b7/ce/e838d64b4c26b9497fe7b8b27d49.jpeg

    ░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░░
    ❝ I can’t really hear what Jeremy says, because I’ve got my two Stanley Cup rings plugging my ears.❞

  17. HabsFan82 says:

    The only cup the Habs will win in the near future. Is a Tim Hortons mug.

  18. Habshire says:

    The NFL and NBC should get Colin Campbell’s opinion on the middle finger malfunction at half-time.

    http://www.cnn.com/2012/02/06/showbiz/ent-super-bowl-halftime-show/index.html?hpt=hp_c1

  19. Lawrencetown Liquor Pigs says:

    So what’s our magic number?

    ____________________________________________________
    Dear Mtl Canadiens,
    Please beat Boston to tie the season series. You are about to cost me three bottles of rum in a little over a year.
    Love,
    Michael

  20. J.J. of Turku says:

    Hey scouts!
    Anyone remember Juraj Mikus. Plays currently here in HC TPS, Turku. Came from KHL at the end of a january 2012, drafted by MTL 2005. Stats in two games: 17 shots, 1+4. 6’1 (187cm), 200lbs (91kg). Forward who shoots from right and often.

    http://media.turku.fi/kamera1.html

    • ed lopaz says:

      looks like Mikus has tried his luck twice already in North America.

      he played a year in the Q for Chicoutimi and did quite well – more than a point per game – that was 2006 the year AFTER the Habs drafted him.

      then he played 2 years in Slovakia – did very well there – and decided to give the AHL a try for a year.

      as a 22 year old in the AHL, he scored only 4 times in 56 games.

      I’m not saying its a bad idea, J.J, but it is possible that Mikus is not

      prepared to come over a 3rd time – and he might not be that

      successful in the North American game on our ridiculously small

      and outdated ice surface.

      I know guys like Avtsin are having trouble finding the time and space that they get on the International ice – which is a way better game!

      keep up the scouting!!

    • rnnoble says:

      I did not remember him, so I looked him up. He was signed by the Kings a couple years ago. He’s had some good stats (1-4-5 in 5 GP) with TPS Turku, but he was kind of middle of the road in the KHL.

  21. JayK-47 says:

    Dudes, I was having my Monday morning QB coffee and thinking about WHY do the Habs need a real first line center ‘specially cuz I went and got these stats from tsn.ca to check my perception for the Habs need.

    Note:They have Cole and Bourque on their opposite wings but their relative positions stay pretty much the same if L is switched for R and vice versa.

    Tied for 18th in centers scoring, DD (28th ranked C)
    Tied for 20th in centers scoring, Pleks (33rd ranked C)

    Tied for 9th in LW scoring, Cole (12th ranked LW)
    11th in LW scoring, Patches (18th ranked LW)

    29th in RW scoring, Bourque (50th ranked RW)
    63rd in RW scoring, Gionta (despite 31 games played)

    So it seems the forward corps are doing ok-ish compared to their peers by position while RW is suffering a bit due to Gionta’s loss.

    So where am I going with this? Well Todd’s and Fisher’s articles both mentioned the Habs home record which is horrible and shouldn’t be because the coach should be able to pick his match-ups. Then it hit me, the Habs NEED a door kicking, goal scoring center to make home confines friendly again. I’d like to see them add a physical D-man to make defensive zone starts have some push back but yeah, they need someone to tilt the ice in one direction and take back home ice advantage. Double the home ice wins, and bring the PP to the middle of the pack, and this team will be more successful next year.

  22. Count Jacques-youlahHHH says:

    I got the answers folks:

    Trade ak46 and weber to the preds and reunite him with little titties and in return the rights to alexander radulov from the khl.That’s something creative.That would potentially be a steal of a deal too….radulov is frikkin awesome.

    …..You’ll never get to heaven if you’re scared of getting high…..

  23. Chris says:

    I’m curious about a couple of things, particularly for those who are most vocal in the demands that Molson clean house.

    1) In your estimation, who are the best GM’s in hockey?

    2) If Pierre Gauthier were to be fired, who would you replace him with?

    3) If Randy Cunneyworth were to be fired, who would you replace him with?

    Note that I don’t necessarily support any of those things. I’m curious to see what Gauthier does at the deadline, and I’ve been impressed with most of his moves as GM, truth be told.

    Cunneyworth probably will end up going elsewhere, taking the fall for a team that simply didn’t perform this season. I honestly don’t know what coaches out there are appealing. I shudder at the thought of all the retreads (Hartley, Crawford, ???) whose names will be bandied about. I don’t think Montreal is the market to break in a rookie coach yet again, especially if that rookie is the volatile Patrick Roy. Maybe a Cunneyworth-Boucher trade, tossed in the ring by somebody I can’t remember a couple of months ago, is the way to go, although Boucher’s much-lauded methods seemed to have worn thin on his veteran laden franchise just 1.5 seasons into his tenure. Even Keenan usually takes 2-3 years to wear thin.

    As for the best GM’s, that is a tough one. All the good ones (Shero, Wilson, Holmgren, Holland, Poile, etc.) have made mistakes and face serious issues in the short-term. If I had to pick one, I would probably go with Shero right now as he has assembled a team that has withstood the loss of Sidney Crosby for 1.5 seasons and who have continually dealt with major injuries (Malkin, Staal, Letang) and still contend.

    • G-Man says:

      I am glad Boucher took his 1-3-1 schtick to TBay. And you all thought JM’s system was dull.

    • petefleet says:

      I’m glad you asked. I’ve got to get this off my chest.
      1. There is no question that the top two GMs are Holland and Talon. Shero is very close behind.
      2. Doesn’t matter, fire him. He has got to be the guy that is making RC play Gomez. It has got to disheartening to the other g uys who play their asses off and produce points, to watch Gomer get PP minutes and 2nd line duty.
      3. I don’t want RC to get fired. I believe he can make a winner out this club but not with some of the current players. PG has to either get rid of some of the dead wood or get rid of himself, a la Gainey.

      ******************************************

      Nothing would be written at all if a man waited until he could write it so well that no one could find fault with it.

      ***Habs Forever***

      • Ian Cobb says:

        If you don’t play him, hoping he will show well and break out somewhat, then there is no possible way that we could ever move him. We will have him on the roster for three more years.

        There is not much that the team can do unless they choose the one time only buy out, and that will be all cost with no return at all. So I doubt that will happen.

        • petefleet says:

          there is nothing that can happen, realistically, this year that can justify Gomer’s minutes or secure a trade to another team. Mike Milbury and Rejean Houle are not GMs anymore so there will be no trade. A buy out is the only legitamate option, regardless what it costs because he is sucking the life right out of the team. While they’re at it, trade Campoli, Weber and Kaberle for draft picks.

          ******************************************

          Nothing would be written at all if a man waited until he could write it so well that no one could find fault with it.

          ***Habs Forever***

        • ont fan says:

          Probably have to trade for someone who has a bad contract too. It must be tough playing under these cicumstances

      • Chris says:

        You’ve got Dale Tallon as a “no question” best in the business? I struggle with that…Tallon was the one that signed Campbell and Huet to the cap-crippling contracts that caused the Hawks to bleed useful players (Byfuglien, Versteeg, Niemi, etc.) that they haven’t really been able to replace. He also mismanaged the Cam Barker contract situation, which is a pretty big black mark.

        Tallon has done a decent job in Florida, so I’m open to the idea that he is one of the better ones. I just need to see what he does down there over the next 2-3 seasons to see if he is a guy who can quickly rebuild a team but struggles to maintain it.

        Holland is great, no question. But even there, his poor drafting and dealing of picks in recent years may cost them over the next few years.

    • AndyF says:

      Good questions, Chris!

      1) Holland, Chiarelli, Armstrong, Shero

      2) Maybe Larry Pleau is available. And get some serious consulting from Bowman. I’d also like to say that the support staff (pro and minor league scouts are important. It’s a team. I’d definitely make Andy Murray a very attractive offer to do pro scouting. The guy’s awesome!)

      3) Tough one. These things always seem to catch the Habs by surprise. You’d think they would be grooming Damphousse right now, but he’s busy being a TV star. And I guess Patrick Roy would make it entertaining, although I don’t know if he could follow a “bigger” gameplan, like tanking a whole season. He’s sort-of his own boss. I like RC, but the Habs don’t. I’ll let them solve it.

      http://andyfroncioni.com

      • Chris says:

        2) I don’t see Bowman coming here. His consultation with Chicago is partially in place so he can support his son Stan as GM and as a family support his son David, who has dealt with mental and physical disabilities.

    • CanadienBoy says:

      Moen if shop properly could fetch a good return will see what GM get

    • mdp2011 says:

      o 1-In no particular order, Chiarili, Shero, Holmgren, Holland.
      2-Claude Loiselle
      3-Big problem for the Habs as they are limiting themselves to bilingual coaches. Because of this limitation, they should do everything they can to prep potential young bilingual coaches in Hamilton. This way there is a chance that every 2-3 years these coaches get their chance elsewhere in the NHL, similar to Guy Boucher, then eventually they could come back with NHL experience to coach the Habs. This is the only way the Habs can ensure that there are enough bilingual coaches with experience they can choose from.

      Edit: my short term solution to # 3 (everyone will think I am nuts) but bring back JM to finish off his last year of his contract, hire a bilingual coach for Hamilton and groom him to taker over in two years. I know this is not the ideal situation, but the Habs have painted themselves in a corner with not having a bilingual coach in Hamiltion ready to take over.

      • Chris says:

        Great point on #3.

        The Habs are in a difficult position. They are expected to hire a bilingual coach and general manager, but they are the only team with this requirement. As such, the normal rules that the rest of the league gets to play with (poach up-and-comers from successful franchises) may not be possible in Montreal.

        Grooming bilingual coaches in Hamilton would be a good solution to this issue.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      1. Holland. Doug Wilson. Dale Talon. (Shero had 5 consecutive top two picks.)

      2. No idea, but PG probably deserves to be fired. Yes he made individually OK moves, but he built a team that is last in the conference. I think he was involved in the Gomez trade. He didn’t anticipate the reaction to Cunnyworth’s hiring because he is detached from the team’s culture. And the way Cammalleri was traded, although it may end up working out, was clearly an emotional reaction, which isn’t smart.

      3. Cunnyworth cannot coach at this level. If we do sell off veterans and ice a youngish team next year then the best choice is Jacques Lemaire with Larry Robinson as his assistant. He will do it. It would mean getting rid of Gainey however.


      Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

      • Chris says:

        1) I like Holland and Wilson as well. Tallon benefitted from a decade of high draft picks, so I can’t give him too much more credit than Shero. That being said, I’ll give him the edge because I like what he’s done down in Florida thus far. I would put Chiarelli above both of them…he’s also won a Stanley Cup, and he has a much more balanced team.

        2) I’m with you on the Gomez trade. And the handling of the coaching was abysmal.

        3) I don’t know about Lemaire in Montreal…maybe. He’s obviously much more comfortable in his own skin now then he was in the mid-1980′s and has had two decades of success to back up what he might want to do. He’d certainly be worth a try.

        • HabFanSince72 says:

          True he got Kane & Toews from tanking, but the reast of the team was assembled through great drafting and trading, e.g.

          Byfuglien: 245th pick
          Versteeg: traded from Boston for a player who never made it to the NHL.
          Sharp: traded from Philly for a player who never made it to the NHL.
          Bolland: drafted in the second round
          Keith: drafted in the second round
          Seabrook: drafted #14


          Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

      • TomNickle says:

        Keep in mind that Wilson acquired Heatley and parted with Michalek and acquired Rivet for Gorges and a 1st.

    • TomNickle says:

      Peter Chiarelli, Paul Holmgren, Lou Lamoriello and Dale Tallon. But it’s all speculation based on the hockey operations people they surround themselves with. Their success could just as easily be a product of the people around them. Which is why I leave Ken Holland off of my list. Mike Illitch has established an organizational structure that makes Holland look better than he is.

      If I chose the GM of the future I would ask Claude Loiselle to come on board.

      I believe Marc Crawford would be a good fit for the organization.

      • TomNickle says:

        On a personal note, I would love to see Jarmo Kekalainen get the GM job. I think he could build a dynasty.

        • Chris says:

          Kekalainen does not get enough credit for the job he has done. He was a hot prospect for a couple of years after his success in St. Louis, but has really fallen off the mainstream radar. Probably partly to do with the fact that he is back in the Finnish Elite League with Jokerit.

  24. G-Man says:

    Jack Todd writes more tripe along with The Geezer™ and The Gazette wonders why their sales tumble. Getting rid of these 2 would be addition by subtraction. After all, their careers have been over for about a decade now. Maybe, they can draft a couple young reporters with no axes to grind. You know, get them to write thousands of words per day to develop confidence in their prose. Alas, it won’t happen as long as that softie Cowan is in there…

    • dh says:

      Why is Todd still employed after his tripe calling Thomas a racist with no evidence to back him up?

      Funny how he can call for Gomez to lose his job for not doing his job.

    • arthadude says:

      Todd who? I won’t even let my bird crap on that column.

    • RGM says:

      Just hope that none of those reporters dodge the draft. Bazinga.

      ———————–
      GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is probably not our year!
      “Scott Gomez, a potential Hall of Fame player, has two Stanley Cup rings and a Calder Trophy that says ‘I’m a player whom any authentic NHL coach will rely on to fix a game problem.’” – VancouverHab

      Chat with me on Twitter @TheRealRGM81

    • Pieboy says:

      G-Man, your post is disrespectful.

  25. Sal says:

    Just asking. Suppose the Habs wind up with a high draft pick this June. Is anybody else nervous about selecting Russian prospects, Yakupov/Grigerenko, even if they are currently playing in Canada on Junior A teams? Fact is, NHL teams have been taking passes on Russian players in successive drafts for several years now. Go for the next best North American prospects, or, take a chance on a Russian player that could bolt the first time they encounter any adversity?

    Sal from the Hammer

    • G-Man says:

      Very much so. However, we shouldn’t prejudge based upon a few bad apples. Many Russians have been excellent contributors to Cup wins.

    • HabsPEI31 says:

      Both Yakupov and Grigorenko have been playing in North America for a bit now.

      Yakupov WANTS to play in the NHL. That was why he joined the Sting after being drafted by them.

      My concern is (if Mtl gets close enough to draft him), he’s not overly big: 5’11″, 167lbs. Apparently plays a good two-way game, while being lights out offensively.

      Mikhail Grigorenko was drafted by CSKA Moscow in the KHL draft, but opted to come to North America to play junior, with the Remparts. This is a big sign he too wants to play in the NHL. He’s bigger at 6’2″, but needs more weight on him – 183lbs. He also plays center! Hello!

      If Montreal doesn’t fall low enough to get a lottery pick, I’m hoping they are around 4th or 5th. And draft Brendan Gaunce, a 6’2″, 200 lbs center playing for the Belleville Bulls.

      Yep, PK’s old team. Where his brothers Malcolm and Jordan play. And a cousin, Marselis, who’s only 16, could be interesting in a year or two.

      “Only a goalie can appreciate what a goalie goes through.” – Jacques Plante

      • CanadienBoy says:

        How about trading that pick for Getzlaf and get instant rebuilding

        • petefleet says:

          Great, get another guy who isn’t living up to his hype. Check his #’s this year. He’s got a 50 goal scorer with him too. The answer is not Getzlaf.

          ******************************************

          Nothing would be written at all if a man waited until he could write it so well that no one could find fault with it.

          ***Habs Forever***

      • DearyLeary says:

        Having concerns over Yakupov’s height is short-sighted at best. Idiotic at worst.

        Nugent-Hopkins is a bit taller, but weighs in at 175 lbs (that’s probably when he’s soaking wet) and he was playing spectacular hockey to start the season. He put up 106 points last season in the W.

        Yakupov put up 101 points as a rookie in the OHL (breaking some chump named Stamkos’ record). He also put up 49 goals.

        Yakupov is among a very short list of players with truly elite offensive talent. I wouldn’t turn Grigorenko away if Yakupov wasn’t available though.

        • HabsPEI31 says:

          “Idiotic at worst”? Ya don’t pull punches with insults, do you?

          At 5’11″ on the wing, I’d still prefer someone over 6 feet. We have enough small-ish players as it is. Adding another under 6-footer to this team does not accomplish the goal of increasing the overall size of said team.

          Look at Cole and MaxPac; using their size on the wings creates room for the rest of the line.

          “Only a goalie can appreciate what a goalie goes through.” – Jacques Plante

      • Chris says:

        Gaunce is a bit of a longshot to go 4th or 5th…I wouldn’t be surprised to see him slide a bit. He will be a good player, but he will take some years to develop. He has not yet dominated at the OHL level despite being blessed with good size and speed.

        • HabsPEI31 says:

          Gaunce may not be dominating, but he is steadily progressing.

          2010-11 65GP 11G 25A 36Pnts, -31
          2011-12 49GP 22G 25A 47Pnts, +2

          Mind, I’m just going by stats, Chris. You seem to have a better read than anybody else around here on players.

          He’s ranked 7th in the latest official draft rankings. Yakupov and Grigorenko rank 1 & 2, and then it’s all defensemen until Gaunce. So, if Mtl’s slide has them in that bracket, I’m thinking they may change their philosophy (for once) and pick for the team’s need (big center), instead of ‘best player available’.

          We certainly don’t need defensemen. Although there’s an interesting choice or two…

          “Only a goalie can appreciate what a goalie goes through.” – Jacques Plante

    • frozengolf says:

      I hate the thought of picking a Russian player, as our last Russian pick was so successful (Kosy). Lots of talent, but like a majority of his bretheren, play only when the mood strikes him. I would much rather pick a Canadian kid.

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

      —Fred “The Fog” Shero

      • RGM says:

        Andrei Kostitsyn is not from Russia.

        ———————–
        GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is probably not our year!
        “Scott Gomez, a potential Hall of Fame player, has two Stanley Cup rings and a Calder Trophy that says ‘I’m a player whom any authentic NHL coach will rely on to fix a game problem.’” – VancouverHab

        Chat with me on Twitter @TheRealRGM81

      • DearyLeary says:

        When Kostitsyn was drafted he wasn’t half the player that Yakupov and Grigorenko are now.

        Watch Yakupov play, I dare you to say he takes a shift off.

    • ont fan says:

      If the Russians are available..take them..don’t think we will have the chance tho

  26. Thomas Le Fan says:

    I don’t know what to say to the 113 people who are embarrassed to be Habs “fans”. Except … bye now. Including Jack Todd. Won’t miss you.

    • Sal says:

      You’re not embarrassed that the Habs are in 15th place? That we took a loser like Kaberle. A guy nobody else was stupid enough to bite on? That Scott Gomez, at $7.3 million hasn’t scored in a year? That PG is still guiding the ship, despite trading Cammellerri, as a knee jerk reaction to a semi-factual statement, when he could have waited a little longer, and tested the waters for a better offer? I will always be a Hab fan, but, as a fan, I believe we need to hold the team to a higher standard. Otherwise, we become Leaf fans…with their mantra, “wait till next year”, NO THANKS!!
      Sal from the Hammer

      • habs-hampton says:

        I’m ticked off, frustrated, mad, etc., but I’m always proud to be a Habs fan. I wear my hat proudly everywhere and I hear about it everywhere, but I really don’t care. Anyone can cheer for a first place team. Real fans stick with the team through thick and thin. It doesn’t mean we support management and their decisions. As fans, we have the right to b*tch and complain until the cows come home.
        It amazes me how many guys I know are “lifelong” Bruins fans. Funny I never knew it until last spring.

      • Thomas Le Fan says:

        Um, in a word, no. Why the hell would I be embarrassed? If you are actually “embarrassed” to pull for this team, you may need to consider counseling because you’re taking it all a tad too seriously, doncha think? It’s a game. Go Habs!

      • ont fan says:

        What’s to be embarrassed about..I’m not part of the organization..I didn’t make any decisions..I’m just a fan

    • mb says:

      I don’t know, but I think some people are more embarrassed to be Habs fans because of the fanbase itself, than the team’s record or performance.

      I’m a Habs fan in the good, and the bad times. The so-called fans who support the team only when they play well and win… I don’t call that fans.
      Of course, I get pissed and frustrated at this team sometimes, but I still hope the best things are to come.

  27. Rub Ah Dub Dub 3-Habs In A Tub PG, BG, RC, says:

    You all know the rest

  28. The Cat says:

    15th to 14th, or one step closer to the cup?

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

  29. Big scoops this morning. The Habs won the cup in ’93 and they’re not gonna win it this year. Hello Mr. Pulitzer.

    http://www.puckbandits.com

  30. HardHabits says:

    For once Jack Todd doesn’t write an article which is bombastic. I’d like to say that I agree with him this time but it appears rather that he agrees with HH.

  31. RGM says:

    The Vince Lombardi Trophy presentation is the antithesis of the Stanley Cup presentation. The Cup is awarded to the captain of the winning team, who then brings it to his team for the huge celebration and then ceremonial passing off to all of the players. It celebrates those men who are directly responsible for championship glory. The Super Bowl is presented in a tiny little pod to a bunch of geezers with billions of dollars who proceed to give platitudes in the form of a speech. Total corporatism at its finest, complete with shilling of a vehicle in a promotion paid for by the highest bidder. All of this before a single player gets to hold up the championship trophy that they have fought for for the last four months.

    ———————–
    GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is probably not our year!
    “Scott Gomez, a potential Hall of Fame player, has two Stanley Cup rings and a Calder Trophy that says ‘I’m a player whom any authentic NHL coach will rely on to fix a game problem.’” – VancouverHab

    Chat with me on Twitter @TheRealRGM81

  32. SmartDog says:

    If Molson cares about winning above all AND has any brains, Gauthier will be gone this week.

    I’m doubting both of these things though. The return of the Molson’s is looking like the return of profit over success. Why fire Gauthier when you’d still have to pay him? Why send Scott Gomez down when it would cost you money? Why not trade for Kaberle and his horrible contract when he just MIGHT bring you a round of playoff profits. THIS is what is driving this team.
    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • HardHabits says:

      This season is over. The play-offs are out of reach and this team doesn’t deserve to be there. The worst thing the Habs can do is move up the standings at this point.

      I say double shift Gomez and Kaberle. Price should play at most 2 of every remaining 3 games. The losses will follow.

      Here’s looking forward to a nice draft pick and if Gauthier has any sense a few more selections after the Habs become sellers at the deadline.

    • mdp2011 says:

      If you fire PG now, who takes over? Gainey? The problem with firing a GM in season is that there are not that many available canidates to replace him.

    • ont fan says:

      No sense in firing him now..the people we want to hire are going to be in the playoffs..wait til the dust clears in May or June

  33. boonie says:

    I re-read Lord of the Flies last night… Ok, I re-read the cliff notes… Ok, I read the cliff notes… Ok, I looked it up on Wikipedia… Ok, I read the one sentence description from the on demand TV listing…

    Any who, couldn’t stop thinking about the 1981 Oilers, one of the few teams i could think of that achieved great success comprised largely of young players at most key positions  and allowed to develop without vets.

    But the point is – few teams comprised stocked primarily with youngsters find real success (insert your definition). Historically our successes have flowed from past success.  Hell, it’s right out of Flanders… It’s our way.

    We have a group of youngsters we can build around. Patches, Price, PK, DD are our future and we have developing prospects behind them. The questions are who are the RIGHT vets to lead them?  Do we have them on the team now? Can we deal for them? Will they be the playing at high levels when we’re ready to take the next step?

    Plecs and Gorges are the right age and have leadership characteristics. Cole may be too old by then. Gill and moen will be gone or way over age. 

  34. JayK-47 says:

    Prolly cuz Suter is UFA while S. Weber is RFA.

  35. Malreg says:

    Weber is the bigger/better of the two, but Suter is also an elite defenseman.

    Weber is only an RFA at the end of this season, so there is not as much urgency to deal him, whereas Suter is a UFA at the end of the year.

    Even if they don’t sign Weber, he will still have great value in the summer.

  36. Phil C says:

    The dilemma for the Nashville GM is does he let Suter (a UFA) walk for nothing at the end of the year, or does he he trade him at the deadline for assets that will help the team’s long term health? Suter would bring at the very minimum a 1st rounder and a good prospect so many feel that Nashville can’t afford to let him walk. On the other hand, Nashville are playing better this year than expected and trading Suter would undoubtedly hurt their playoff chances. I suspect he will not move.

    The best play for Montreal is to wait until the season is over and either trade for Suter’s negotiation rights, or take a run at him in free agency. But he won’t come cheap, he only made $3.5M this year, so he will be looking for a pay raise. Parise and he will likely be the most sought after UFAs in July. I don’t think Suter will stay in Nashville.

    Weber is not going anywhere this year because Nashville can’t afford to lose them both. The Weber sweepstakes will come this time next year.

  37. rnnoble says:

    Todd wrote that Thomas “felt free to dis Barack Obama, because Obama is black”. The Gazette later took out that sentence and wrote: Note: The Gazette apologizes for previously posting an unedited version of this column.
    Where is the ambiguity in that comment?

  38. naweed235 says:

    glad to hear. I am well too familiar with the emotions and frustration of having a sick pet. They become like family

  39. kempie says:

    Nice. That is good news.

  40. shiram says:

    I too think he is worth the cash, and hope he can be signed for Gill’s money basically, a 2 year deal at around 2.25 millions.

  41. Lawrencetown Liquor Pigs says:

    The safety, the pick, the Giants punter, the Catch and the dropped balls on the last drive were the keys to that game.

    ____________________________________________________
    Dear Mtl Canadiens,
    Please beat Boston to tie the season series. You are about to cost me three bottles of rum in a little over a year.
    Love,
    Michael

  42. Chris says:

    1) Gillis has been solid.

    2) I quite liked Savard, but I think it would be a difficult decision to go back to a guy that you basically replaced 10 years earlier. That would be tough.

    3) Not a fan of Therrien, personally, but he’s added a lot of experience since then so perhaps.

  43. Kooch7800 says:

    I 100% agree with you. The Giants receivers outplayed the ones on the Patriots no doubt. I think Football is the only sport where the passer gets more credit than the receiver. Both QB’s played well but I am not so sure Manning should have been MVP. It should have been his receiver who made that wiked catch to keep his feet in bounds…that was the drive that won the game


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