Memorial Cup memories from Habs; Churla hired as chief amateur scout

The Halifax Mooseheads (photo above) won their first Memorial Cup on Sunday night, beating the Portland Winterhawks 6-4 in the final in Saskatoon.

Nathan MacKinnon had a hat-trick for the Mooseheads, including the final goal into an empty net, while Jonathan Drouin had five assists. MacKinnon is ranked second among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting for next month’s entry draft, while Drouin is ranked third.

“I might not score a bigger goal in my life,” MacKinnon, told reporters afterwards about his empty-netter. “It’s just … 22 seconds left. We won it. We’re champions. The empty netter will be in my mind forever.” 

MacKinnon, who grew up in Halifax, added two assists in the final game and was named the tournament’s most valuable player after scoring seven goals and adding six assists in four games. Drouin posted 1-8-9 totals in four games. Portland Winterhawks defenceman Seth Jones, ranked No. 1 by Central Scouting, had 2-2-4 totals in five games.

This marked the third straight year a QMJHL team won the Memorial Cup, following the Saint John Sea Dogs in 2011 and the Shawinigan Cataractes last year.

The Canadiens announced Monday that they have hired Shane Churla as their chief amateur scout. The 47-year-old comes to the Canadiens after working as an amateur scout with the Dallas Stars organization. A sixth-round pick of the Hartford Whalers at the 1985 entry draft, Churla spent 11 seasons in the NHL with the Whalers, Flames, North Stars/Stars, Kings and Rangers. In 488 games, he had 26 goals and 45 assists to go along with 2,301 penalty minutes.

“Shane played a major role in our amateur scouting department and we want to thank him for his eight years of dedicated service to the Dallas Stars organization.” Stars GM Jim Nill told the Dallas Morning News. “We also want to congratulate Shane on his promotion to Montreal and wish him only the best in his future endeavors.” 

In other news Monday, Canadiens prospect Dalton Thrower was traded by the WHL’s Saskatoon Blades to the Vancouver Giants. The Canadiens’ second-round pick (51st overall) at the 2012 entry draft, Thrower posted 6-21-27 totals to go with a plus-18 in 54 games with the Blades the season.

Meanwhile, Halifax captain Trey Lewis has something in common with a couple of current Canadiens: Francis Bouillon and Josh Gorges were both captains of their junior teams when they won the Memorial Cup.

Bouillon was captain of the Granby Predateurs when they became the first Quebec team in 25 years to win the Memorial Cup in 1996 with Michel Therrien as his coach.

“It’s a pretty funny story,” Therrien once recalled in an interview with Gazette sports editor Stu Cowan about the day he named Bouillon captain. “He was not the captain when we started the season. We sat down together and I asked him what it would mean for him to be captain of our team. And he was giving me all the right answers: ‘I have to lead by example, I have to work hard, I have to do this, I have to do that.’ I said: ‘You forgot something.’ He said: ‘What?’ I said: ‘You have to want to be the first guy to lift the Memorial Cup.’ That was our goal, and he did it, 25 years after Guy Lafleur (with the Quebec Remparts).”

Recalled Bouillon before this season: “That was my last year (in junior) as a 20-year-old. He brought me in his office and said: ‘I believe in this team and we’re going to have a great season. You’re going to be my captain and your job will be to help me bring the team together.’ We worked together a lot during the season. Every week I was in his office to give him feedback on how the guys were feeling, if the team was tired, what the team needs to be better. It was a great season and my best memory of Michel was when we won the Memorial Cup.”

Gorges, who was born and raised in Kelowna, B.C., was captain when the Kelowna Rockets won the Memorial Cup in 2004.

“The best memories you have of winning are of the battles you go through with the guys,” Gorges told “You come out of a game and look around the room and all you see is guys that are banged up – they’ve got ice-packs on their shoulders on their knees, cuts and stitches – and you know how tired they are because you know how tired you are. Then you get up the next day to play and you look around the room and all the guys that were beat down the day before are all fired up and ready to go right back and battle some more. When you win together you become friends forever. Most of those guys that I won with on that team are all my good friends still today.”

(Photo by Liam Richards/The Canadian Press)

MacKinnon, Drouin lead Mooseheads to Memorial Cup,

Habs’ Prust has fond memories of Memorial Cup win, by Stu Cowan

Final NHL Central Scouting draft rankings,


  1. habs_54321 says:

    in 2002-2003 kelowna rockets won the memorial cup with guys like keith,weber, and gorges on the team. gorges was a leader from the blueline with 59 points in 54 games and 20 points in 19 playoff games outscoring his now nhl stud counterparts keith and weber. so the question is what happened to gorges’s offensive touch?

  2. Maritime Ron says:

    Re MA Fleury

    Fleury hasn’t played since May 7th when he stunk out the joint giving up 6 goals in a Pens loss to the Islanders.
    The game before he gave up 4 goals and luckily the Pens scored 5 to win.
    Somehow even if Pitt loses a game or 2, they will probably stick with Vokoun until the end.

    At $5M per year Cap Hit for 2 more years and another $11.5M in salary, Fleury could be a potential Compliance Buyout, or a trade where the Pens would either eat some of the Cap Hit or add a player.

    Moving forward, every Salary Cap dollar becomes precious.
    This summer UFAs has Pacal Dupuis, Matt Cooke, Eaton + the other trade deadline guys and some RFAs.
    Next summer is a whopper.
    The Pens UFAs for summer 2014:

    Interestingly enough, the Pens only have 5 present roster players signed for the 2014/15 season and almost $40M in Cap Space – and 1 of the 5 is Fleury.

  3. Tighthead says:

    Did some Hockey DB research.

    Cornwall won 3 Memorial Cups as a member of the Q – 1972, 1980, 1981. They transferred to the OHL after the 1981 title, which was apparently not a popular move with the fans. I remember going to playoff games against teams like Shawinigan and Sherbrooke and they were crazy.

    • B says:

      After winning the Memorial Cup in 81, the Cornwall Royals moved to the OHL and then struggled on and off the ice there for the next ten years. In 92 the Royals were moved to Newmarket lasting 2 seasons there before they were bought by the Ciccarelli brothers and became the Sarnia Sting (Galchenyuk’s OHL team). Cornwall now has the Colts playing in the CCHL (formerly called the CJHL).

      –Go Habs Go!–

  4. habs_54321 says:

    question: who was our chief amateur scout before this guy was hired?

    • commandant says:

      no one.

      The scouting department has been greatly expanded under MB.

      Go Habs Go!
      Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        A few of us have mentioned for a few years now that the Habs need to take advantage of their wealth etc…. No better way than to make sure our scouting dept. is as complete as possible. Really like this move of adding what appears to be competent scouts.

      • B says:

        Since their picks will be coming later in the rounds going forward now :), it is prudent to beef up the amateur scouting and try to make even better use of those later picks.

        –Go Habs Go!–

  5. 24 Cups says:

    The question of who will start in net for Pittsburgh seems to be a mute point.

    The Pens felt pretty let down last year when Fleury allowed the Flyers to score at will. The Vokoun signing was a clear statement that there would be no backup this season. The team would go with the hottest player in the playoffs.

    Then the Pens went all in when they loaded up at the deadline. They circumvented the cap just the way Chicago did during their Cup year. The price was two 1sts and two 2nds which was an indication that the team would not care about Fleury’s status on the team or his personal feelings. Maybe not even his tenure with the club next season. Paging Mike Smith.

    Vokoun certainly keeps Pen fans on the edge of their seats. The constant rebounds, the right hand catching glove and the element of awkwardness that he displays in the net, especially when he back up into his crease, keeps all Pen fans on the edge of their seats. However, it’s tough to argue with a record of 6-2/1.85/.941. In the playoffs, you always go with the hot hand.

    Vokoun should be the goalie of choice for the next two rounds. Only a complete meltdown on his part would bring back Fleury.

    • rhino514 says:

      whenever i´ve seen fleury play us he usually lets in soft goals.
      i´ve never understood why he is considered to be one of the top goalies in the league.
      Both Price and Fleury have seen their perceived value fall this season; Price due to the bad finish and Fleury in the playoffs; funny how they were both considered along with Luongo the top Canadian goalies out there.
      I don´t believe in first round picks for goalies (which they both are), especially high picks; having said that I still think Price is a better goalie than Fleury. I see Fleury as a hot and cold guy who is average at best, camouflaged by a great team, while I still think Price is better than average and still believe he can get better.

      • habs_54321 says:

        price and fleury are almost an exact equal

        • rhino514 says:

          I´d give the edge to Price. But they are close. I guess if one believes Fleury is subpar, then one must believe Price is also; if one believes Fleury is good, then Price is good as well. So hard to assess goalies, really; so much depends on the D and on the team as a whole.
          Every bad goal seems to be magnified ten-fold.

          • habs_54321 says:

            i agree price slight edge but not by much when you compare there stats side by side you can really see the carreer simularities

            left fleury playoff stats right price
            0.891 0.894
            0.834 –
            0.899 0.934
            0.891 0.890
            0.908 0.878
            0.933 0.901

            left fleury reg season right price
            0.916 0.905
            0.913 0.916
            0.918 0.923
            0.905 0.912
            0.912 0.905
            0.921 0.920

        • HardHabits says:

          Not really. Fleury won the Cup.

      • GrosBill says:

        I have never understood all the hype around Fleury and I watched him as a junior and was thinking that even then. I said to friends when NYI met PIT in the first round that Vokoun would be in net for Pit by game three, I was not off by much.

        • The_Truth says:

          Some could say the same about Price. I have never seen a goalie with so much NHL hype, who did so little. Until probably this season, he was being talked about as being a top goalie in the league by a lot of people. Shouldn’t that be reserved for a guy who actually has the stats to back it up?

          • GrosBill says:

            I can see how some could say the same of Price. My own take on it would differ slightly. I was much more optimistic of Price turning into a solid keeper then Fleury. My biggest issue with Fleury has always been rebound control, something Price seemed stronger than Fleury at as a junior(my opinion). Fleury has a cup so far at least, and he was ok for the Pens that year in the playoffs, but as we may see this year, the Pens do not require elite goaltending to win.

            Even after all the Price talk on here, I would take Price over Fleury without hesitation.

    • HardHabits says:

      It will still take some time for the Habs to give the impression that they have such a pair dangling between their legs. It is paramount that the Habs start drafting goalies in order to potentially have an up and comer to either push or replace Price.

  6. Sportfan says:

    I’d like to point someting out to everyone who wants Bickell. Remember a certain player on Nashville named Joel Ward? He had a great playoff and then went UFA and signed a decent deal at 3 million a year. Bickells performance has been great this post season and yes he probably already has a bunch of people wanting to sign him, but I’m sure the list go bigger now. Hopefully MB has an advantage with Hawk players.

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!

  7. Marc10 says:

    Man, look at the empty seats at the Joe with one minute to go. Those quitters don’t deserve another round (unlike the team that’s playing in front of them…) 4-2 down with an extra man on… For sure you stay and watch it… if only to cheer your team on to game 7. Disgraceful.

    Go Hawks.

    • Sportfan says:

      Lol some hab fans quit too 😛 Happens in every sport, the way I see it I’m seeing the game untill the end because you never know what will happen. I was at the game where we came back from 5-0 I didn’t leave, but a fair bit of people did I’d be very upset if I had, but thats me not everyone.

      Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!

      • Habfan17 says:

        I remember going to a Habs game back in the early 80’s and I couldn’t find parking and was 8 minutes late, and as I walked into the area where my seats were, the Habs scored, it was the 7th goal and I missed them all! They were playing Vancouver. So, I never arrive late and never leave early


      • B says:

        I wonder how many “fans” left early in Boston and missed that late game 7 comeback vs Toronto?

        –Go Habs Go!–

  8. HabinBurlington says:

    Looking at the Rangers cap situation,
    They have some big decisions to make:
    Zuccarello, Hagelin, Stepan – all RFA
    Ryan Clowe – UFA
    And some guy named McDonagh is a RFA as well. They already have 51million committed.

    So Brooksie thinks King Richard will get 80 million over 8 years on next contract…. That is big bucks.

    • Sportfan says:

      Sather has put that team in a crappy situation.

      Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!

    • Kooch7800 says:

      I think that Richards may get bought out. They are not going to want to lose any of the young guys. Losing richards would give them the wiggle room to get it done and really they wouldn’t be losing all that much offense

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

      • GrosBill says:

        So to make our discussion at centre in Montreal even more interesting, let`s say he gets bought out. Would you like to see him in a Habs uniform at a reduced price?

        If yes, what needs to be done to make it happen within the Habs current roster?

        • Sportfan says:

          Yes, yes I would, but then someone would have to be out of the lineup or out of town in the center position.

          Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!

        • Kooch7800 says:

          If he could be had for 5 mill and under for a short term than yes. If not, I would pass. Richards hasn’t been the player he used to be but he still is good

          “Keep your stick on the Ice”

        • Cal says:

          Brad Richards? Gomez Contract 2, The Sequel. Not worth $1 mil, let alone $8mil.

          • Kooch7800 says:

            Only major similarity is INSANE contracts that both are not worth. a Richards produces a lot more than Gomez. And his cap hit is 6.66 mill so Gomez actually got paid more

            “Keep your stick on the Ice”

        • GrosBill says:

          I would consider it. Depending on the cost and what we will do with DD 🙂

          Seriously though, it would create a situation where one center should go. The question is Richards. Is it the situation in NY or what? Seeing him benched in that series is not something I would have predicted at the start of the season.

    • Marc10 says:

      Easy. Buy out Richards… And trade Nash to Columbus for future considerations. 🙂

    • Maritime Ron says:

      Brooksie can say what he wants, but the gold standard right now is Jonathan Quick.

      Before the new CBA, and after he won the Cup, he signed 10 years/$58M with the first 7 years paying hm $7M per year.
      Lundqvist would be in the max. $6M-$6.5M range and that would depend on the Cap moving forward along with a team willing to pay that for its goalie.

      For the coming year only 7 goalies will make over $6M salary and 5 of them did not make the playoffs this year.

  9. HabinBurlington says:

    I posed the question down below of who starts for Pittsburgh in net, here is an article discussing Bylsma and the questions he faces in choosing a goalie.

  10. Steeltown Hab says:

    Desharnais for Burmistrov + a 2nd



    Lars, PK, Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Emelin – @J_Perez22

    • Cal says:

      DD- the only Quebecois face on the Habs- isn’t going anywhere.
      Pleks might be the one getting moved. Habs can get back some value for him.

      • Steeltown Hab says:

        Ya let’s trade Subban to feature Bouillon more under that philosophy


        Lars, PK, Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Emelin – @J_Perez22

        • Cal says:

          It’s not philosophy. It’s called marketing to your clientele.

          • Hobie Hansen says:

            Too bad marketing comes before winning.

          • Cal says:

            @Hobie- Habs are the only team in 30 that plays to a mainly French speaking market.
            DD is not the sole reason the Habs post season sucked. 1 center out of 4 can’t be blamed for all the team’s failures.

      • Bob_Sacamano says:

        Yes, let´s trade away a much better player. Draft Mantha and no one will care about DD anymore.

  11. Morning Troops!

    Quote of the day!

    Good Morning Cal! If Pittsburgh ends up with Lundqvist, I quit!

    Same here Jim, but there is no way the Pens can keep adding these 6-8 mil dollar players can they?

    See yas laters gators!


    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    Custom Sports Figures
    Summit Member 00029.31

  12. Hobie Hansen says:

    Sorry guys, would never say this if the Habs were still playing, but the Blue Jays are starting to roll. They have to just hope for some luck and that one of the wild card spots is won by a team that is 7 or 10 games above .500 and not 20 games, then they have a chance to get there by September.

    Good to see some of the averages, like Bautista, Lind and Cabrera hovering around the .300 mark now instead of the entire team batting .220.

    Going to the game, down low on the 3rd base line on Saturday June the 22nd. Hoping mother nature cooperates because I am really looking forward to soaking in the sun and watching some good baseball, while drinking a few cold one of course.

    The good thing, you can buy three quality seats for a baseball game for the cost of one at the Bell Center.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Enjoy the game Hobie, the only way to enjoy a ball game at the concrete convertible in Toronto is if you are sitting down low and the roof is open. Then it actually feels like you are in a ball park, having sat many times toward the upper part of the lower bowl, all you see around you is concrete.

      Good news is that Reyes is getting closer all the time to a return. Buerhle and Dickey appear to be getting back on track as well. As the seasons goes on Pitching becomes so important, having the veterans starting to lead that staff will be critical.

      CHeers bud, and hey I posted a video yesterday thinking specifically of you. It was Churla at a training camp for the Stars, where he put his skates on to help give young players fighting tips. Thought you would like that bud!

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        LOL thanks man! I remember Churla back in the day. He had many encounters with Bobby Probert, Davey Manson and Darren Kimble.

        Also remember when he was picking on Pavel Bure in a playoff series and Bure blind sided him with the mother of all elbows!

        And ya, totally agree with you about the Rogers Center. I hate when the roof is closed and you absolutely have to sit down low, inside the bases or close to.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Any team that can keep the Yanks out of the post season is worth rooting for.

  13. habstrinifan says:

    I am trying to join the discussion on who MB should be looking at and drafting. But I honestly am stumped. Three reason.

    #1) He isnt drafting top 5 and very likely wont be able to move up that high… so no ‘take the best player option’.
    #2) The pool throughout the first and second round is very deep and in this year, apart from goaltendending, the talent is spread throughout all positions on the ice.
    #3)MB has lots and lots of picks .. his options are so wide open(and I do think there are many ‘players-for-picks’ considerations on the table.
    Those above are the pure ‘scouting personnel’ considerations. The ones in which the scouts would have to give MB their accumulated and best possible input.

    Then there are the real GM considerations. Where MB stands alone.. of course after consultation.. but he stands alone.

    What direction to take? Should MB use this past season as simply an eye-opener. Ignore the non-playoff(really it was a non playoff). His main consideration then will be what happened in the season. Or should he give greater weight to the ‘performance’ of everyone in the playooff. And then that will definitely change his approach. He doesnt want to lose out with a weak round 1 performance again. Keep in mind that round 1 has proven to be, in the last few years, the one set of series where the true comprehensive quality, and therefore standing of your team, has been demonstrated.

    Which aproach he chooses, will determine whom he drafts or whom he trades to obtain.
    This is the way I see how some previously “core” players could be affected.
    Long term build approach: Price has a few more years. Pacs is safe.
    Upgrade for 2014 playoffs: Those two players are in play.
    Long term build approach: Markov is more likely to be made available.
    Upgrade for 2014 playoffs: Markov is safe (with reduced time of course).
    Same for Gorges… but with less certanty to the decision.
    Gionta is available either scenario.
    Long term build approach:Plekanec is more likely available.
    Upgrade for 2014 playoffs: Plekanec is safe.
    DD is safe period… unless (and this is the only scenario I see DD being gone) he can work out a multi player deal with Tampa and get Lecavalier.
    Those are only some of the players. Bottom line I dont see how MB’s list of ‘core players of our future’ wont be reduced if he is planning a 2014 impact.

    Last off-season was simple and straightforward for MB. This year is really where he HAS to earn his keep and reputation. You know by his reactions in the Ottawa series.. the decisions wont be easy.

    • JF says:

      Bergevin has made it clear that he takes a long-term approach. His goal is to build a team that will be a serious contender for years, not a team that will make a splash one year, only to fall off the radar the next. So he is not looking at next year’s playoffs. For him, the keys to success are depth and balance, and both are built through drafting and development. This year’s playoffs showed him that the team does not have anywhere near enough depth to contend. I think he knew that at the deadline, which is why he made only one minor move. As it turned out, we did not have enough depth to get through even one playoff round, let alone four. The injury to Emelin fatally damaged our defence, and nothing that Therrien tried really made up for that. Then in the very first game we essentially lost three of our top nine; Eller was gone, and Gionta and Pacioretty were completely ineffective.

      Bergevin knows that we are not close to being contenders, so he will not make any move simply in the hope of a better playoff run next year. He will look for trades that can help the team long-term, while making small moves that help in the immediate future without sacrificing the long-term development of the team.

      • habstrinifan says:

        I am not so sure that he is as ready to forego a ‘good playoff run’ next year.

        • JF says:

          I’m confident he’s not going to continue on the path Gainey and co. followed – giving up picks and prospects to make the playoffs and hopefully steal a round. This is what has so drastically hurt the Habs’ depth.

          For an example of depth you can call on in the playoffs and that we don’t have, look at the Bruins. They were missing Seidenberg and Ference, two of their core defencemen. No problem. Call up Torey Krug and another kid, whose name escapes me at the moment. Both do OK, the Bruins keep winning, and Krug has an astounding four goals in five playoff games. We have nothing like that. Tinordi did OK but did not really replace Emelin; and there was literally no one we could call on to step in for Gionta and Pacioretty. There is no way to acquire the depth we need except by drafting and development, with an astute trade here and there when the opportunity offers.

      • Habfan10912 says:

        JF, I love the way you think.

      • formerly known as the hc says:

        MB’s sights are not on the 2014 playoffs. That is way too short sighted. Hey, if they make the playoffs and win a round, great.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      One thing that may happen is what PG did with drafting TInordi. IF MB has one particular player on his radar and that individual drops 5-6 spots perhaps from 6th to 12, then maybe MB parlays 1st and 2nd or 1st and 2 2nds in order to get that one player.

      Tinordi appears to be on track to joining the Habs next year and could very well be a long term impact player. I could see MB doing something similar.

    • habs_54321 says:

      robert rychel, william carrier, jordan subban

    • athanor says:

      I would say that the ‘take the best player’ option exists right down until there are no more players the club wants to pick.

      It may not yield a top five player, but I would expect the Habs to have a list of their top, say, 30 assessments. They would then go along scratching off the top ranked one as he gets chosen in the draft.

      Whoever is at the top of the list when their turn comes to choose is ‘the best player’ option.

  14. HabinBurlington says:

    Any chance Pittsburgh opens the series against Boston with Fleury? He was their #1 throughout the season, it also means that Vokoun goes to backup while playing well. Perhaps I am overthinking this, but if indeed Fleury struggles, the team is confident with Vokoun coming back into the nets. On the other hand if Vokoun starts series and struggles early, is the team confident returning to Fleury in that scenario?

    • habstrinifan says:

      WOW! Tough call! What if he does and Fleury stinks outthe joint and sets the momentum tone for the series. Boston is a team which thrives on grabbing the momentum. This is a hard call. I think he has to go the ‘dont upset the apple cart route’ and play Vokoun.

    • Maritime Ron says:

      Pitt beat Boston in all 3 games by a 1 goal margin.
      Vokoun played in 2 of those 3 games.
      Rest assured Boston will be crashing the net as it is 1 of only 2 ways they can win.
      The other is the referees putting whistles in pocket.
      Bruins will try everything in Game 1 and 2 to see what they can get away with such as they did when they beat Van for the Cup

    • Cal says:

      Vokoun wins for Pittsburgh. He will start against Beantown.
      Wonder if Fleury will be bought out? 2 years left at a hit of $5 mil.

      • GrosBill says:

        I think the Pens will definately buy him out. Is just too much money to play backup with the cap going down next year. Getting him off the books is not something I would like to see, more money for the Pens to spend on support cast for 71 & 87.

  15. Habfan17 says:

    Based on the cost of moving up, teams would have to be as certain as possible that the player they will be getting is a can’t miss, impact player. I am not so sure with what the Habs would have to give up to move up into the top 5, that it would be worth it. Although, if they could trade their first round pick, Gorges, Holland, and DD to get the 4th or 5th overall pick and get Barkov or Nichushkin it may be worth it. Other wise, With players like Mantha, Morin, Ernie possibly available, it may make more sense to stay put. I definitely hope they don’t trade any of their other draft picks to move up.


    • habstrinifan says:

      I cant see MB moving up to #5… unless he is really thinking long term and then some HABS players that we considered core before will be in play. Players like Gorges White etc wont get the deals for #5 and up done.

    • 24 Cups says:

      Nashville needs to bring in a top flight forward. Barkov should fit that bill. The Preds don’t need a Dman like Gorges, Holland will probably never make the NHL and DD is a small, 2nd/3rd line centre.

      It’s going to take more that Montreal’s second tier players to get that deal done.

  16. Habfan10912 says:

    I’m guessing the reason why the official called for a penalty shot was because Frolik never got a shot off. I guess I’m in the it’s the right call camp but this is another example of the inconsistent calls from NHL officials today. I’ve seen much worse plays go without a penalty shot being called.
    Plus if an idiot such as Jack Edwards tweets it was the wrong call I must be right.

    • Cal says:

      No controversy at all. Frolik was slashed and couldn’t get a shot off while clearly ahead of the Dman. Penalty shot was the right call.
      The inconsistencies have to do with the utter BS of not calling penalties during the playoffs. No other sport suspends its rules for championship play. Complete bush league thinking.

  17. Habfan10912 says:

    A list of potential Canuck coaching candidates, Shockingly there is no Jacques Martin on it. Kidding.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Eakins gets a great deal of credit here in the GTA for developing many of the young players on the Leafs, and the Marlies have had some pretty good success in the AHL the past two years. Wouldn’t be surprised at all if the Canucks offer Eakins the position.

      Good Morning Jim.

      • Maritime Ron says:

        Eakins has been getting rave reviews, but you have to wonder if that’s the right fit. As it stands now, this is an aging veteran team that may have seen its best days. While few would ever refuse an NHL head coaching job, the next coach should make it a condition that the Luongo/Schneider saga gets fixed.
        Eakins will surely get his shot sooner or later, and perhaps a younger up and coming team would be a better fit for him.

    • habstrinifan says:

      I know you mentioned his name in jest, but I dont think JM will coach in NHL again. And it may be mean but for me that’s a good thing.
      JM was a bad coach and surprisingly a petty minded man.

      • Habfan10912 says:

        I agree Trini. He’s a pretty boring dude to boot, eh?

        • HabsFansince49 says:

          Which raises another question: why did Gainey anoint Martin coach when his (Gainey’s) philosophy was speed and small?

          • Maritime Ron says:

            The word out is that Martin agreed with the BG philosophy 100%.

          • habstrinifan says:

            Aparently Gainey had wanted Lemaire who hedged because of salary and basic commitment. Gainey then had a very small window of time to make a decision. Remember also his major qualification criterion was that he did NOT want a novice coach.. he was going for an experinced veteran coach at the time as Gainey truly believed in his roster changes.

        • Habfan10912 says:

          @49 Good question.

  18. petefleet says:

    Seriously now, is it not time to cut ties with Carey Price? Up till the unceremonious exit from the playoffs and horrible month of April this year, he was a front runner to play for Canada at the olympics. I think it’s fair to say that he will not be in that discussion ever again….too flakey for olympic pressure.

    I haven’t been wrong in a long time…..not feeling like today is the day.

    ***Go Habs Go***

    • Habfan10912 says:

      There is NO other goalie in the organization to be able to “cut ties”. As a Hab fan we ALL better be hoping that Price at 26 years old plays better then Price as a 25 year old. As for any Olympic dreams, a lot can change in 2 months let alone a year.

      • Maritime Ron says:

        MB’s job this summer is to get a Dman or 2 to better protect Carey and allow him some sight lines.
        As for Carey, here’s wiping the slate clean. He has a year or 2 max to get to the level of consistent performance with no long term slumps.
        He will need to be in the top third SP if the Habs hope to make the playoffs next year.

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        Hope is the thing with feathers
        That perches in the soul,
        And sings the tune–without the words,
        And never stops at all,

        And sweetest in the gale is heard;
        And sore must be the storm
        That could abash the little bird
        That kept so many warm.

        I’ve heard it in the chillest land,
        And on the strangest sea;
        Yet, never, in extremity,
        It asked a crumb of me.

  19. CharlieHodgeFan says:

    I’ll be unpopular in saying this, but Desharnais will be back in form. He’s a solid player who had an off season, and I expect him to adjust and contribute very well next season. The guy has played against adversity all his career, and like Gallagher, was often not expected to get to the NHL because of his size.
    He’s a popular whipping boy on HIO because he’s francophone and because people are angry at the size of the team, but if you look objectively, he simply had a bad season. We don’t need player to put down, and everyone’s welcome to have pet dislikes, but I suspect Desharnais will silence a lot of people next season.
    He’s not a favourite player or anything, and if he were traded for a good return, no problem. But the team that got him would get a decent centre set to bounce back.

    • Dust says:

      I hope so. I mean he gets the most pp time whether he is playing well or not. So i hope he plays well for the teams sake

      • B says:

        He didn’t get the most PP time. He was 9th on the team in PP TIO/G, 6th among the forwards. Plekanec was the 1st wave centre.

        –Go Habs Go!–

    • Habfan10912 says:

      As a fan I sure hope you are correct. I think the biggest issue with DD is he was getting power play time and top minutes even though players such as Lars Eller were badly outplaying him. Perhaps if he’s given third line minutes and less power play time the expectations will decrease.

      • Maritime Ron says:

        I guess we’ll get the answer next year if DD made Cole and Pax have big years, or did they make him look good?
        The past season was too short for a full evaluation.
        Anyhow, any way you cut it the 2 top Centers for years to come will be Eller and Galchenyuk.
        On a serious Stanley Cup contender, DD is not a Top 6 Center. The proof is just look at the final 4 or even the final 8….

        • Habfan10912 says:

          Morning Ron. I agree with your post. 3.5 million for a decent third line center is not bad is it?

          • Maritime Ron says:

            Hi Jim.
            The money number is good if he can chip in his 40+points and be responsible defensively….and PLEASE get him off that 1st Unit PP. It’s not fun watching all those lost puck battles or falling down on any type of little contact.

          • B says:

            Desharnais was 9th on the team in PP TIO/G, 6th among the forwards.

            –Go Habs Go!–

        • The_Truth says:

          I really question if Eller is a top 2 center on a serious contender as well. I am leaning to No.

  20. johnnylarue says:

    Didn’t like the reffing in the Detroit/Chicago game tonight.

    Classic case of making chintzy calls out of nowhere after playing whistle-in-pocket for 40 minutes.

    Too bad for the Wings–I like their crusty veteran edge. Might have been their last chance to go deep with Datsyuk in the lineup. Doesn’t look too good for them now, though.

    • Saintpatrick33 says:

      Not to mention that questionable penalty shot call.

      • SmartDog says:

        I think the penalty shot call was okay. Guy had a breakaway and just as he’s lining up to shoot he gets his hands slashed hard from well behind and the puck slips away.

        But the heart-breaker was the goal before. The puck clearly comes out of the zone (as in 6 inches of white paint), pops back in and no-one notices the Blackhawk who receives it 10 feet in? Weird. Or should I say, just poor reffing.

        Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

        • habstrinifan says:

          Agree re the PP. I think Detroit played a better game but just couldnt score the killer goal. It may have been their last chance. Home ice will mean something in Chicago for game 7.

          • SmartDog says:

            Should be a great one. Looking forward to it. I don’t watch much hockey once the Habs go down, but these two teams are something.
            Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

  21. Naslund110 says:

    was just wondering if Mb’s history in Chicago might give us a foot up in getting ufa like Bickell

  22. revengfullsnowman says:

    Gallchenyuk has first line skills

  23. twilighthours says:

    I’ve been sobererer than I am right now.

  24. revengfullsnowman says:

    Next years lines
    Pacs plecks gally
    Gallagher eller gionta
    Ryder/bourque Leblanc kristo
    Prust white Armstrong

    P.k Georges
    Markov emline
    Boullion tinordi


    Trade dd, Moen, Diaz bourque/don’t resign ryder

  25. The Jackal says:

    What is grapes wearing?!?!

    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  26. Un Canadien errant says:

    Shifting gears and looking at the restricted free agents, we see quite a few borderline players that won’t exactly challenge for an All-Star Team nod, but they are assets that are worth retaining and developing, for the most part.

    Ryan White is first in the list, and while he had an up and down season, it makes sense to retain a tough forward who plays with heart and can play centre, can fight and will always stand up for his teammates. He can still develop his game, although his upside is relatively low we can now safely assert, and his window is closing. He gets a cheap qualifying offer.

    Mike Blunden is also RFA, and looks like a tweener, a guy who’ll be effective in the AHL but may not have what it takes to make the next jump. Again, he’s an asset, he could turn out to be a late bloomer, we re-up the guy and hope he doesn’t get snapped up on waivers by another team and then goes all Charlie Simmer on us.

    Gabriel Dumont is a coach favourite, for all the right reasons, they love his heart and effort and hockey sense and how he doesn’t back down despite his size. He makes up for a lack of stature by being reputedly very strong. He was the best player in Hamilton for a long stretch this season and earned an injury callup. This one’s a no-brainer, we qualify this guy, despite the fact that he’s another smallish player on an undersized team/organization.

    Yannick Weber may have run out of road with the Canadiens, he didn’t show enough to continue playing here. He had opportunities to earn a roster spot, we all waited for him to contribute reliably on the powerplay, but it hasn’t happened yet. While he’s still young and he’s not a Benoit Pouliot-style lost cause, he’s being pushed from behind by the prospects in Hamilton, so it’s time for a change of scenery for him. Having said that, the Canadiens will still qualify him and dump him on another team for a low draft pick, or another longish shot prospect whose skillset fits in better with what we need. I can see a big winger languishing in the minors in another organization being targeted if his team needs offensive defenceman help.

    In Hamilton we have four players who are RFA’s this summer.

    Dustin Tokarski was acquired this season, and he’s a tender who still needs a lot of work, but I don’t doubt that he will be re-signed, especially with the lack of quality goaltending prospects in the organization.

    Robert Mayer‘s situation is cloudy at best, his signing a contract with a Swiss team and then instantly reneging on it is a puzzler. I guess the Canadiens re-up him, I just don’t know if they can, legally. Expect the team to draft a goaltender this June.

    Ian Schultz had a great chance this year, if he’d shown up in good condition, to earn a spot on the roster as a thirteenth or fourteenth forward at some point. That’s been his Achilles heel his entire career, being overweight and out of gas during games. In 2011-12, he showed up to camp in decent shape, and earned praise from coach Clément Jodoin as the most improved Bulldog along with Joonas Nattinen. He backslid however this season and for his troubles was sent down to the ECHL, and not even the Canadiens’ Wheeling Nailers. That’s a huge red flag, that they didn’t even want him in the organization.

    It’s baffling that a player can fumble an opportunity like this. The team had a crying need for a physical player, a tough forward, he could easily have earned a callup based on injuries or situation (read: Bruins). I have a hard time believing he’s too dense to figure this out, and wonder what else is going on there. He’s not coming back, evidently.

    Finally, we have Joe Stejskal, a big D-man who had two seasons in Hamilton and the ECHL but hasn’t impressed/improved enough to merit a contract. There are plenty of youngsters in Hamilton who need icetime, he won’t get a sniff of it next season. It’s probably best to use his roster spot on a veteran AHL defenceman, who’ll steady the troops and can shepherd them through the tough games. Mr. Stejskal will not receive a contract.

    So there we have it. The Canadiens have 31 players currently under contract (, if we add Darren Dietz, Magnus Nygren and Mike Condon, that’s 34. We assume Sebastian Collberg stays at Frolunda one more season, and Charles Hudon goes back to Chicoutimi-WJC, so their contract ‘slide’ and don’t count against the limit. We add Davis Drewiske, that’s 35, then Whitey, Yannick, Mike Blunden and Gabriel Dumont, makes 39. The two Hamilton goalies make it 41. Daniel Prybil, who I’ve already said should be offered a contract, bumps that up to 42.

    Eight contract slots is plenty to add a few free agents come July 5 to round out the roster until 2014, when Brian Gionta and Andrei Markov come off the books and by which time Jarred Tinordi and Nathan Beaulieu should be ready, and we’re in business.

    • twilighthours says:

      Another book.

      White is a sure thing.

      I’d keep weber but he clearly has no place on the team.

      Dumont is iffy for me

      I know nothing about the goaltenders.

      The rest are interchangeable spare parts.

      • Kooch7800 says:

        Dumont I would keep around. He led the bulldogs in scoring and is a tough little bugger. He just isn’t big at all. If you can get him on a two way deal i would do it as he won’t hurt you on the bottom two lines

        “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • johnnylarue says:

      Isn’t Drewiske a UFA July 1st?

      Correct me if I’m wrong–too lazy to Google!

      Killer of a low pressure system here in Vancouver today… 😉

  27. Un Canadien errant says:

    We discussed recently the players whose rights are about to expire that the Canadiens should sign. The deadline for these decisions is June 1 for the most part, and the announcements have been rolling in, with, for example, Olivier Archambault’s agent Normand Dupont confirming today that he has been told by the Canadiens they will not be offering him a contract, and Mr. Archambault will re-enter the NHL draft in June.

    Next we need to consider which free agents on the 50-man roster the team will retain. Some of these are easy calls, for others the picture is more muddled, but we’ll risk an opinion/recommendation/prediction.

    Going off the Canadiens’ CapGeek page, the first unrestricted free agent we come to is one of the very easy calls in Michael Ryder. His contract and cap hit of $3.5M comes off the books this summer, and it’s hard to imagine a scenario whereby he remains with the team. While he might have made the decision more interesting had he continued his fifteen games or so point streak immediately after the trade from Dallas, he cooled off noticeably at the end of the season, and was basically invisible in the first round exit against the Senators.

    Gaston Therrien of RDS was very realistic when analyzing Michael Ryder’s play early on, during the streak, when some fans were already debating whether we should offer him $5M/year, and for how long a term. He kept repeating that Michael has a role, which is to score goals, and when he does he’s not hurting his team. It’s when he stops scoring that he becomes a problem on your roster. Gaston Therrien reminded us repeatedly that he won’t go in the corners, he won’t play physical, that’s never been his strength. What he does is cruise around like a shark, looking for empty space from where he can take a pass and snipe at the net. That’s all we can expect from him, he’d state, and as long as he’s clicking, he contributes, but you have to weather his droughts.

    The fishtail end to his season probably kills any hope anyone had that he might remain with the team, but there would have been a fundamental impediment to this even if he’d had a good finish. Michael Ryder, at 33, will most likely sign the last contract of his career, and he will want to cash in, and want a term of four or five years. His needs and desires completely clash with those of the Canadiens, who want to build with youth, and stay away from expensive free agent deals for now since they hamper a team’s flexibility. If the Canadiens were like the ‘Hawks or Penguins, with the framework of the team set, and needed one final piece to make their contending team ‘complete’, then there might be interest for Mr. Ryder. As such, we can expect that another team out there, desperately in need of a scoring forward and with cap space will make an offer that the Canadiens couldn’t or wouldn’t dream of matching.

    One caveat we can explore is that Mr. Ryder may have hurt his contract value with this end to his season. Factor in that next year the salary cap is going down to $64M, and a lot of teams will be struggling to ice a competitive team while staying under this number, so his options may be more limited. I can perhaps see how he might think that a one-year deal to polish his resume with a strong season might be to his advantage, allowing him to re-enter the free agent market in 2014, when the cap should rise again and there might be more demand for his services.

    Next up is Colby Armstrong, who was thought last summer to be a ‘beau risque’ for les Glorieux, in that the team was getting a player who, while hampered by injuries in the last few seasons, had talent and offensive ability, could play in the corners and against the tough teams, kill penalties, had leadership ability, was familiar with Coach Therrien since their days in Pittsburgh… I opined at the time that he was an upgrade over Mathieu Darche, and now understood why the latter was not offered a contract he could accept (he did receive an offer for a two-way deal, but he turned it down). ( In hindsight, I’m not sure how much better Colby was than Mathieu. While he didn’t play badly per se, the hope that he’d vastly outplay his million dollar cap hit never materialized. It does look like this sponge has been wrung dry, and I would be surprised if he was offered another contract. Let’s hope for his sake that he can obtain a sinecure in Phoenix or Florida to finish off his career. Good guy, but we need to move on and improve.

    Jeff Halpern was added at no cost to the roster, being plucked off waivers, and he served a valuable role as a fourth-line right-handed centreman who could take draws and kill penalties. Since we were in a race for first in the East and getting ready for the playoffs, it was a sensible move. Going forward, we’re not going to set ourselves up as contenders with a 37 year old checking, defensive player. I imagine the team thinks it can find another player who can fill this role who is younger and maybe plays a little more physical. Shake his hand, thank him for his loyal service (again), and move on to the next…

    ….right-handed defensive centreman with some size who can play physical and kill penalties and take some draws who was signed as cheap roster insurance, namely Petteri Nokelainen. He’s only 27, and was injured at the start of the season so he didn’t have a chance to prove himself, and it’s not his fault, but it will play against him. While he has decent size and is a former first-rounder, he’s not been able to establish himself in two abridged seasons here, and it’s hard to see how Marc Bergevin might not want to try something different. We were moderately surprised that he was re-signed last summer, and it would be stunning to see him get another offer from the Canadiens, unless it was a two-way deal.

    Davis Drewiske was acquired for cheap at the deadline from the Kings, who swapped him for a fifth-round pick, and he was seen as only roster insurance, a depth player who added a little size to the back end. Trouble is, soon after the deadline he was forced into duty when Alexei Emelin was lost for the season, and his performance was uneven. Some fans are willing to cut ties and move on, but I have to believe that Marc Bergevin’s pro scouting staff saw something in him, and that he can be resigned for relatively cheap, given that he didn’t set the world on fire when he had a chance. I think it’s even money that he stays on an affordable one or two year contract.

    In Hamilton, Frédéric St-Denis and Jason DeSantis are both UFA. With the crowded depth chart on the blue line in Hamilton, and more youngsters coming in like Darren Dietz and Magnus Nygren, it’s hard to see how they will be retained. Frédéric is a headsy player and a homeboy, so maybe he’ll be offered a two-way contract, if Mr. Bergevin thinks they have enough room under the 50 contract limit, but if I was his agent I’d recommend going to another organization not overloaded with defence prospects. Like the Canucks maybe.

  28. Bill says:


    Game seven Wings and Hawks. Will be the game of the year. Can’t wait.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

  29. wild flower says:

    How can the CBC guys keep talking about the game with out mentioning the worst missed off side of the year. My ten year old noticed. The other day Bob was talking about the wrong line on the ice. Yikes.

  30. jols101 says:

    Handzus, Bickell, and Frolik getting it done for the Hawks.

    So much high end talent yet it is these type of guys that are making the difference.

  31. twilighthours says:

    Yo yo, I’m in NYC enjoying the awesomeness of this freaking awesome city. We are zonked after 4 days on the feet, so watching this game. No way should that have been a penalty shot.

  32. Bill says:

    Yeah guys, you can forget about signing Bickell.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

  33. jols101 says:

    Wow, Crawford just pulled a Price. lol

    Joking, I still love Price. He will have a great year next year.

  34. frontenac1 says:

    I’d like to see Volchenkov and TU-74 on the Blue line. A Ruskie wrecking crew. Pain,suffering and mayhem dispensed with abandon.

  35. BrianSkrudland says:

    Don Cherry doesn’t seem too interested in chatting about his pal Rob Ford lately. Just like when one of his goons goes off the rails….he’s conveniently silent.

    Daily recommendations for May 27
    Song of the Day: My Hometown (Springsteen)
    Movie of the Day: Donnie Brasco

    • H.Upmann says:

      As he said so memorably at in his Ford inauguration speech: “Put that in your pipe and smoke it, ya left wing kooks!!!”

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      Don Cherry and Rob Ford…the “crack-pot” and the “crack-head”…

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

    • twilighthours says:

      Crack smoking or not, rob ford is a disgrace to a city in which I lived for 5 years, and a city I absolutely love.

      • Marc10 says:

        How in the world does a guy with such overt ties to drug dealing make it that far up the food chain? What an absolute joke… and such a relief that Toronto has managed to outdo Montreal, if not in city hall corruption, at least in ridicule. Well done!

  36. YOWHab says:

    Allow me to re-phrase myself: A first rounder and a minor prospect.

    Florida values him, and would not want to give him up for free.

    Can you imagine a Subban-Gundbradson pairing??? that would be beyond awesome.

  37. thebonscott says:

    does anyone think NJ would take gionta back to play wiith his brother for a year, we could use the 5 million in space, they could use a forward


  38. Psycho29 says:

    Off subject but…

    My nephew comedian Mike Paterson’s “tribute” to Mayor Rob Ford:

  39. thebonscott says:

    good article on regarding offseason moves


  40. Saintpatrick33 says:

    I’m happy to see MB hiring more scouts, can never have too many of those.

  41. frontenac1 says:

    Yep. The Cornwall Royals. Homeboy Dougie Gilmour played with them for 3 years in the early “80’s. Won a Memorial Cup with them . Always loved “The Killer”

  42. Mavid says:

    126 days or so till the regular season starts…

  43. YOWHab says:

    I had a crazy thought at work today, what if Mb were to make a pitch for Eric Gundbradson??

    now before you all call me a fool and beat me with the impossible stick, here me out.

    In 104 NHL games, EG has had a whopping 12 points and an unspeakably bad +/- rating. Last year he was the #5 D on a dreadful Florida team. His NHL career has been a big fat ZERO so far and that has to affect his stock.

    However, he is still a promising defenceman and has the size and nastiness (6,5 220 and we all saw his fight with White) that this team needs badly. He will likely never be a top two defenceman, but he has what it takes to be a superb second pairing guy.

    He really shouldn’t be worth more than a third rounder, but will likely have his tires pumped in any possible trades. A first rounder, a third rounder and a prospect should do the trick.

    • Clay says:

      You’re seriously suggesting that we give a first rounder, a third rounder and a prospect for #5 D? Just wow…

      ☞ “The deepest sin of the human mind is to believe things without evidence” ~ Aldous Huxley ☜

      • Bill says:

        I hear ya

        Full Breezer 4 Life

      • YOWHab says:

        Allow me to rephrase myself: HE WAS A #5 D LAST SEASON, but was mishandled and has the potential to be an exellent top 4 defenceman, I’ve seen the kid play, he is really something special, give him time and he will flourish.

        • Bill says:

          There is no need to yell. We know who Erik Gudbranson is, because everyone who follows hockey knows who Erik Gudbranson is: top three overall picks in the draft are not easily forgotten. It’s just that giving up a 1st, 3rd, and a prospect is an awful lot for a guy who hasn’t been panning out. Even if he did turn out to be a decent top four guy, that’s a lot to give.

          Full Breezer 4 Life

        • Psycho29 says:

          104 NHL games, 2 goals, 10 assists, 125 PIMs….
          I would never give a first rounder, a third rounder and a prospect for him, and I hope that MB wouldn’t either…

          I think I’d rather wait for Tinordi , Beaulieu etc make the jump full time

    • Habfan17 says:

      Instead of any draft picks offer them Gorges and Weber


    • Strummer says:

      He sounds like a 2013 version of Komisarek

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

    • Savardian Spinorama says:

      I’m all in on that deal (Gudbranson). There’s another guy I like on that team, Shawn Mathias. He’s a big, rangy center, good on both sides of the puck, works hard and has loads of character. He’s worth a Plecky, especially for the cap differential (900K vs 5M). Not done yet. Then I’m putting Gorges on waivers and making an offer sheet for Ryan Mcdonagh.

    • wjc says:

      He will never be a top 12 defenseman so lets get him. Next time you have a crazy thought, and actually realize it is a crazy thought, keep it to yourself.


    • GrosBill says:

      Not a huge fan of this idea, giving up way more then he is worth….

    • Marc10 says:

      Gundbradson is a bit of a head case. Got a bit of the Phaneuf in him.

      He’s big, he hit, he fights, strong on the puck, mean… But he lacks discipline and has been injured…

      That said, he is a beast and might go very well at the Michel Therrien School of Personal Improvement. Add him to a D made up of PK, Yemmy, Tinordi and Cube and your toughness issues are solved on the backend.

      I would love to add him. I give you Diaz (a good puck moving D man you can use on the PP) and our first second rounder. I’ll also want your 5th rounder in return (we draft well at that spot…)

      Twist my arm and I won’t ask for the 5th rounder.

  44. Un Canadien errant says:

    More on Dalton Thrower, from Canadiens’ Player Development Coach Patrice Brisebois’ appearance on ‘L’Antichambre’. I wrote a loose transcript of what was said, and here is the excerpt on Darren Dietz and Dalton Thrower.

    Host Stéphane Langdeau then asked who outside of Hamilton impresses him. Mr. Brisebois explained that he usually is in Hamilton during the week and goes to U.S. Colleges on weekends, since they play on Fridays and Saturdays. He says he was just in Saskatoon over the weekend, and saw Dalton Thrower and Darren Dietz, and explained that the latter is impressive, in his maturity and dedication to his off-ice training, being in the gym at 0700 hr, and last to leave the practice ice. He described him as a Josh Gorges with “more talent” (!) His Head Coach Lorne Molleken and the Physical Conditioning Coach are effusive in his praise. When the puck drops, he’s ready, every game, he wants to make a difference, he’s a good teammate… In all this, no one asked about Dalton Thrower, about his up and down season, about some of the behind-the-scenes controversy (which is completely omitted from the Sportsnet series “Road to the Memorial Cup”. This is THE question I would have wanted asked, and see how much or how little Mr. Brisebois could offer to shed light on this, but I guess the Antichambre boys aren’t as plugged in to the draftees as we’d like.

    • Cal says:

      Brisebois isn’t about to talk negatively about a prospect on AC, is he?

      • Un Canadien errant says:

        I wouldn’t have expected him to, but maybe he could have put the issue in context, shed some light, spin the positive aspect. I was disappointed the panel didn’t ask the obvious question, but I do believe we at HIO are bigger draft geeks than they are, we know the prospects more than they do. Not sure what that says about them and about us.

    • The Dude says:

      Josh Gorges ‘with more talent’…poor Josh 😉

    • wjc says:

      Sometimes, you learn all you need to know with silence. Old saying nothing good to say….then say nothing.

      When the silence is deafening , that is a defining moment.
      I would think that Brisboise is less then impressed with Mr. Thrower.

  45. HabFab says:

    Archambault’s agent confirms that the Habs have informed him that they will not be offering Archambault a contract.

    • thebonscott says:

      cant sign em all, and he looks like a miss


    • Bill says:

      Ok, for all the guys who think the Habs show favouritism to Quebec boys, can we note this?

      Full Breezer 4 Life

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      Solid decision, and an easy one at that. From an earlier post:

      Olivier Archambault is a player who showed great talent, being the #1 overall pick in the LHJMQ draft in 2009 by the Val d’Or Foreurs. He seemed promised to a great career, but his development stalled in many respects. He measured 5’10” at the time, but has only grown one inch since then, and remains relatively slight physically. His work habits on and off the ice are inconsistent, as well as his offensive production. More worrisome, he clashed with his coach and teammates in Val d’Or, to the point where he was traded before the NHL draft to Drummondville.

      The Canadiens took a chance on him in the fourth round of the 2011 draft (ahead of Messrs. Nygren and Prybil), but to all appearances it has not panned out. His two seasons in Drummondville have not shown much improvement, his offensive numbers being flat instead of increasing. Once the Drummondville Voltigeurs’ season was done this April, he was signed to an Amateur Tryout Contract to finish out the Bulldogs’ season. In ten games, he tallied a goal and an assist, and the reports from Hamilton were not encouraging.

      Mr. Archambault also would seem to be a poor fit within the team concept promoted by Marc Bergevin and Michel Therrien. He comes across as petulant and arrogant, and has a reputation for being moody and hard to coach. Further, the attributes he brings to the table are those the Canadiens’ organization already has an excess of. Smaller, skilled players who are offensively talented but might not thrive in a physical playoff series abound in the system. Charles Hudon, for example, roughly fits the same profile as Mr. Archambault, and is more than a year younger, yet received glowing reviews for his showing in Hamilton, having also finished the season there. Does the team have room for more of these types of players? If we choose one, which one do we go with, the player who represents Canada internationally on the World Junior Team, or the one who battles with coaches and teammates?

      It’s an easy call. If anything at all, Mr. Archambault should receive an AHL contract, nothing more. In fact, there’s a rumour that the Canadiens have already made such an offer, but he’s balking at it, not wanting to battle it out in the ECHL and AHL to eventually earn an NHL contract. Which is not encouraging.

  46. Un Canadien errant says:

    Here’s a post I wrote a few days ago regarding Dalton Thrower and his situation this season and next.

    I looked for clues in the “Road to the Memorial Cup” documentaries, and there was precious little camera time for Dalton. Through other channels we heard of his suspension for not playing according to team rules, and of the rumoured fight in practice during which he supposedly suffered a concussion, a fight that stemmed from the fractured dressing room. In the episodes, nothing.

    Watching the episodes, I feel that Lorne Molleken is the kind of coach who some players might have problems with. He seems very passionate and dedicated, he cares about his players and winning, but he definitely is old-school, a ‘my way or the highway’ guy, and if you got on his wrong side he might have a hard time getting to the ‘forgive and forget’ stage. I never heard him say anything that was creative or insightful, he just insisted on complete effort and making the safe dump-and-chase play all the time.

    Some posters posited that Dalton Thrower and his coach had differences that affected his play. That’s plausible. Going forward, I think he needs another season in Junior, and with another team. As I’ve said before, Saskatoon’s cupboard of picks and prospects is bare, they blew their wad on this Cup run, so they need to restock. Hopefully, they trade Dalton to a contending team, one with a strong coaching staff and he can put his game back together. Considering that Hamilton has a lot of young defencemen already, and Magnus Nygren and Darren Dietz will be heading there next fall, I don’t know if Dalton Thrower has a spot there.

    Let’s hope that this year is a hiccup, and the kid delivers on last season’s promise. He says he patterns his game after Kevin Bieksa’s, and I’d take anything approaching that in a heartbeat.


  47. wjc says:

    Quote from ‘the game’ by Ken Dryden… 36

    ‘Hey Reggie, relax,” Savard yells and Houle, no longer relaxed, jerks up his head, “What’er you worryin about,” Savard continues. “All those annuities you got, Hell, they’ll pay ya six per cent a year for the of your life. In ten years they’ll be worth five, ten thousand bucks a year,” he says soothingly, then pauses for his own punch line, “just because they are worth fifty thousand dollars now.”

    There is loud laughter. (Please note he said ‘Punch line’, for those with poor comprehension skills it means the part where you laugh)

    This is telling how the guys lampoon each other in the dressing room.

    It is obvious that the poster, that tried to character assassinate Regean Houle, because of ‘good natured ribbing’ has never spent any time with a sports team to realize how teams function.


  48. Bob Gaineys Stare says:

    Here’s everything you need to know about Shane Churla, what he brought to Dallas, and what he might bring to the Habs:

  49. Tighthead says:

    Wasn’t Cornwall in the Q when they won their Memorial Cups? 1980 and 1981.

    • ABHabsfan says:

      Definitely in the OHL, I was born in Cornwall and those Royals teams of the 80’s were something.

      “man, I love winnin’; you know, it’s like better than losin’?”-
      Ebby Calvin “Nuke” Laloosh

      • Tighthead says:

        Q through 1982, including all 3 of their Mem Cup wins. Then to the O, then off on a Greyhound courtesy of Willie Wise.

        I grew up a little west of Cornwall.

  50. Maritime Ron says:

    @ Habs_4_ever

    Good-Great Managers/Leaders in any business always solicit multiple opinions, and then THEY make decisions based on hopefully great information received from their trusted.

    They are never concerned/threatened about hiring the best – hiring people that possess complimentary skills and different outlooks or opinions than their own.

    Only the weak and uncertain/ impuissant will believe they know it all – then hire their mirror and unchallenged images of themselves to avoid true confrontation……and ultimately, this leads to the detriment of an organization as a whole – only realized by a privileged Ownership/ Board some time later that did not pay attention…or were falsely star/jock struck at the time.

    See Habs 1995-2012…

  51. 24 Cups says:

    Dalton Thrower going back for a 5th year of junior hockey. That has to be viewed as a red flag.

    • ebk says:

      From the way it was reported by the media, the trade was conditional on him not making the Bull Dogs next season. ie It’s not set in stone that he ever wears a Giants uniform.

    • HabFab says:

      His age is borderline like Beaulieu’s, so he can go either way. In fact Habs don’t have to sign until next year.

    • The Jackal says:

      I don’t know how much of a red flag it is, but I’ve heard a few guys like commandant say it may be better for him to have that last year in junior to work on his game and be more disciplined….

      Anyone know more on this?

      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • thebonscott says:

      nah, he could use another year, whats the rush?


    • Un Canadien errant says:

      Not a great sign, but this was expected after the season he just had. I have to believe that he clashed with Lorne Molleken, and that a change of scenery will be good for him. The Vancouver Giants have a great organization and solid coaching, the Canadiens have a rapport from the Brendan Gallagher draft, so this is a great move. I was hoping he’d get traded from the Blades, this is exactly what he needed.

      If he’d had a ripper of a good season, then moving him up to the AHL would have made sense, but since he struggled for various reasons, it’s not a bad idea to let him find/polish his game in junior before he takes the next step.

  52. thebonscott says: has prust at 6″2 195lbs, has him at 6″0 195lbs, and i thought he was 5″11, so who is right??
    in any rate, i love him, but he is not a heavyweight, he needs help.
    get it done MB


    • neumann103 says:

      I had wondered similar around the beginning of the season. I had been high on Prust with the Rangers and had selected him in a pool. I was delighted when the Habs signed him, but the physical stats have always been a little bit variable. If you have seen the video of him fighting Lucic a couple of years ago with the Rangers they put up a “tale of the tape” graphic that claimed he was almost the same size as Lucic, but on the ice he clearly looked 4-5 inches shorter.

      While it is always difficult to judge based on a picture I believe from seeing a bunch of pictures of him standing beside other players in a variety of situations that you can calibrate him at barely 6 ft tall.

      “Et le but!”

  53. Habfan10912 says:

    @Cal. I understand your frustration bud. The know it all name callers bother me the most. I’ve made a list. 🙂
    CHeers bud. Hang in there. Like our buddy Shane say’s, smile and wave.

    • commandant says:

      My take on Leblanc

      Leblanc had a horrible season… injuries, bad luck, lack of centres in hamilton, and poor play all played a factor, it wasn’t just one thing, it was murphy’s law, everything went wrong for the guy.

      Sometimes a guy has a bad season. heck pretty much the entire habs team (with 3-4 exceptions) were bad in 2011-12.

      Hopefully Leblanc bounces back, in fact i think he will.

      Go Habs Go!
      Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.

    • HabFab says:

      Must be some censuring occurring. Your comment and commandants don’t make sense.

  54. HabFab says:

    2013 Draft Combine starts today and runs until Saturday. Here is the list of invitees;

  55. HabFab says:

    Grading the Habs forwards for this year;

  56. wjc says:

    Quote from Ken Dryden’s book the game…Page 16

    Ken Dryden speaking,

    I had felt myself under constant, almost angry pressure from Montreal to justify myself as the number one goaly. Outside Montreal , it was no easier. With Vachon playing well in Los Angles, and Glenn Resch the same in New York, I kept hearing the same questions with the same harassing inferences…(he went to Pollock for reassurance and agreed to another 4 year contract, but he only had to give a years notice to retire.) He finally realized that hockey offered neither highs or the lows, he felt little emotion and decided to retire the next year.

    The more things change the more they stay the same. Montreal changes and still stays the same over 30 years later.


  57. Rossy says:

    Mr Churla, Grab that kid with the A on his heart and 74 on his sweater–Stefan Fournier!

  58. Habs_4_ever says:

    So who was chief amateur scout before they hired Churla. DId they fire someone, demote someone, or just create a new post for Shane Churla?

    How long was he an amateur scout with Dallas, and is this move something we should be getting excited about?

    “Leave the gun, take the cannoli.”

  59. Bripro says:

    I’m just back from a wonderful cruise which docked in Boston’s impressive harbour.
    As fate would have it, the bulk of the American passengers (roughly half the cruise) were from MA.
    Primarily from Boston. (yeah…. you see me coming here, eh?)
    On the first evening (and a few following), there was a comedy show featuring Tim Kaminski, a brilliant interactive comedian. I haven’t laughed that much in years.
    Of course he tried to woo the Bruins’ fans, which responded with very loud cheers.
    But our small group (30 of us) made up entirely of Montrealers were booing this segment.
    His faced dropped and he immediately stomped across the stage, jumped down and shoved the mike in my face.
    “So where are you from, then????”
    We all answered Montreal in unison. The very predictable reaction was a chorus of boos.
    “Let me remind your viewers that there are more Canadian boys on the Bruins team than any other team in the NHL.” I said.
    Louder boos…. much louder boos.
    Now my wife is sinking lower and lower in her seat, and the rest of our group is a little intimidated, and no place to hide, while he’s standing there with his mike doing the pendulum effect, until I grabbed it and said “But we’re huge Patriots fans.”
    HUGE applause and cheers.
    “So I guess, ladies and gentlemen, there’s no need to throw them overboard” he said to more laughs.
    From that point on, every time I got onto one of the snail elevators, someone would say “Hey, you’re that Canadian guy!!!”
    One very big Bs fan even said “I was comin’ down to tawk to ya until you mentioned the Pats. I hated ya one minute, but loved ya the next. Yur awright!!”
    What a great time we had, even with a boat load of Bruins fans.

  60. Maritime Ron says:

    Interesting talking to some long time scouts with a pretty good track record.
    Some are saying Drouin is projecting as a better all around pro player than MacKinnon.
    While BOTH may end up being great NHLers, those are interesting obseravtions.

  61. Hobie Hansen says:

    So in Stu Cowan’s above article he’s stated that Thrower was traded to the Giants and will play his 5th and final season in Junior next season.

    In an article on the Bulldogs site, link posted by Burly below, Sylvain Leberve is stating Thrower will be with the Dogs next season.

    What’s the deal?

    • Kooch7800 says:

      He will be in Jr next year I would think. He hasn’t been signed to an ELC yet and there is a ton of prospects on D in Hamilton currently. He didn’t have a great year from what I hear so they probably want him to work on his game in jr for another year.

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • commandant says:

      Montreal will decide after training camp to keep him in Hamilton or send him for an overage season in the WHL.

      The trade is a conditional draft pick, if he stays in Hamilton Saskatoon gets nothing… if he goes to Vancouver, Saskatoon gets the pick.

      Due to the bad season he had, and the number of D we have, Vancouver is a possibility, but if he had a good season (like Dietz), it wouldn’t even be a question and teams wouldn’t bother with the trade.

      Go Habs Go!
      Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.

    • HabFab says:

      Thrower could use another year of Junior, this one was a wash!

    • HabinBurlington says:

      The article I read/posted is a month old, I only stumbled on it today. I will assume this recent news from Stu is more accurate. Perhaps a change in heart by the Habs, and maybe they told Thrower he would be better served to have one more year in Juniors.

    • Ron says:

      The Giants have picked up his rights. He is 20 so Sask must not want to keep him as an overage player. The Habs can still sign him though.

  62. commandant says:

    A look at the Atlantic division greats.

    Go Habs Go!
    Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.

  63. HabinBurlington says:

    An interesting perspective, on how this writer thinks the KHL needs to re-focus its marketing strategy in order become a better league.

  64. habs001 says:

    Somehow i think the entire Habs team would be way better and even have playoff success if the 4th line had players that score at least 10-12 goals each…The last few years the Habs 4th line players were basically one goal per 20 game players…In my opinion a scoring 4th line with some toughness is much more valuable than a hands of stone 4th line..especially in the playoffs

  65. bwoar says:

    Great game. Though the constant barrage of MacKinnon/Drouin/Jones gets wearisome after a while when you know your team doesn’t have a glimmer of hope for drafting them.


  66. Ton says:

    do habs keep all of there picks in the draft given its a deep draft……go for “good” players in quantities/ potential 10 top ten picks could drop into the second round! Or do they trade them off with players to get the elite player?!

    • Whatever says:

      With the scouting staff the Habs have and the philosophy of building through the draft, use all the picks. Can always trade prospects too, as long as you have enough prospects to spare.

  67. HabinBurlington says:

    In looking at an article (about a month old) recapping the Bulldogs season, I was surprised to read that Lefebvre is expecting to have both Dietz and Thrower on the Dogs next season. I was expecting that Thrower would go back for one more season in the WHL.

    • Lafleurguy says:

      Nice link, G! The strong positive in the meat of the article was the fact the team had four 20 year old defencemen. A landmark point in time if all four stick with the big team.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      Stu Cowan from above: In other news Monday, Canadiens prospect Dalton Thrower was traded by the WHL’s Saskatoon Blades to the Vancouver Giants. The Canadiens’ second-round pick (51st overall) at the 2012 entry draft, Thrower posted 6-21-27 totals to go with a plus-18 in 54 games with the Blades the season. The 19-year-old defenceman will suit up for his fifth and final WHL campaign next year.

  68. Lafleurguy says:

    Amazing trivia in the Prust article. How could the QMJHL go 25 years without a Mem Cup (1970 to 1995), and now this league has won it three years running?

    “May you live in interesting times.”
    Edit: I see Stu Cowan mentioned the same drought in his article above; my only excuse is I wanted to read the Prust article first.

  69. Sportfan says:

    Congrats Mooseheads!

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!

  70. Fransaskois says:

    Big congratulations to the players. Was a lot of fun to watch.

  71. Fransaskois says:

    Yes, primary.

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