UPDATE: Pacioretty, Desharnais sign for two years


AUDIO: Max Pacioretty conference call

Busy day for Canadiens general manager Pierre Gauthier, who signed forward Max Pacioretty and David Desharnais to two-year contracts. Pacioretty’s is for $1.5 million this coming season and $1.75 million in 2012-13; Desharnais signs for $750,000 and $950,000, according to an RDS report this evening.

Pacioretty spoke on a conference call with Montreal media at 4:30 this afternoon. Full audio is linked above.

A few highlights:

• Pacioretty has put on 10 pounds of muscle and says he’s faster than ever. After having suffered extreme fatigue for a few weeks after being concussed, he said he’s been in full training, 100 per cent, for the past two months.
• He says he continues to get “nasty stuff” through Twitter from some Bruins fans, who maintain his injuries were embellished as a member of the Bruins suggested. “It’s sad that people can feel that way,” he said, pointing out that Boston’s Nathan Horton was also concussed in the playoffs. “I would never say that (Horton) embellished his injury at all, I know exactly what he’s going through.”
• Pacioretty never feared that he’d not be offered a new contract, given his injury.

The team’s release:

MONTREAL (June 20, 2011) – Montreal Canadiens general manager Pierre Gauthier announced today the signing of forward Max Pacioretty to a two-year contract (2011-12 and 2012-13). As per club policy, financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

“We are very pleased to have reached an agreement with Max Pacioretty who is one of the most promising young players in our organization. A power forward with skills, Max showed that he can help our team and make a name for himself in the NHL. We are confident that he will have recovered fully from the injury that kept him out of the line-up for the last month of the regular season and the playoffs,” said Canadiens general manager Pierre Gauthier.

Pacioretty, 22, completed in 2010-11 his third season with the Canadiens in the NHL. The left winger registered 24 points (14 goals, 10 assists) in 37 games. He tallied two winning goals and seven of his goals were scored on the powerplay. He served 39 penalty minutes and obtained 112 shots on goal, while averaging 15:53 seconds of ice time per game. Pacioretty suffered a season-ending neck injury and a concussion on March 8 against Boston.

Pacioretty had registered 32 points (17 goals, 15 assists) in 27 regular-season games with the AHL Hamilton Bulldogs when he was recalled on December 12. He was named the Reebok/AHL Player of the Month for November, collecting 17 points (10 goals, 7 assists) in 13 games.

Since 2008-09, Pacioretty has registered 49 points (20 goals, 29 assists) in 123 NHL regular-season games. The 6’2’’, 208 lbs forward has recorded 86 penalty minutes and collected 243 shots on goal. Pacioretty has scored eight of his goals on the powerplay.

A native of New Canaan, Connecticut, Pacioretty was the Canadiens’ second pick (first round, 22nd overall) at the 2007 NHL Entry Draft. He was part of the United States team in the 2007 World Junior Championship, in Czech Republic.

And the Desharnais release from the Canadiens:

MONTREAL (June 20, 2011) – Montreal Canadiens general manager Pierre Gauthier announced tonight the signing of forward David Desharnais to a two-year contract (2011-12 and 2012-13). As per club policy, financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

“We are pleased to have reached a two-year agreement with David. Since joining our club midway through last season, David has shown that he has the potential to play at the NHL level and contribute offensively to the success of our team,” said Canadiens general manager Pierre Gauthier.

Desharnais, 24, completed in 2010-11 his first season in the NHL. The centre recorded 22 points (8 goals, 14 assists) in 43 games. Four of his goals were tallied on the powerplay. He served 12 penalty minutes and registered 55 shots on goals, while averaging 12:52 seconds of ice time per game. Desharnais added an assist in five playoff contests.

Desharnais had registered 45 points (10 goals, 35 assists) in 35 regular-season games with the AHL Hamilton Bulldogs when he was recalled on December 31. The 5’7’’, 170 lbs forward was named the Reebok/AHL Player of the Month for December, collecting 20 points (3 goals, 17 assists) in 14 games.

Native of Laurier-Station, Quebec, Desharnais first signed with the Canadiens as a free agent on November 5, 2008.


  1. Who will be RW on 1st line?

    ? – Plekanec – Cammalleri
    Gionta – Gomez – Pacioretty
    Kostitsyn – Eller – Darche
    White – Desharnais – Moen

    Subban – Gill
    Yemelin – Spacek


  2. Neutral says:

    Eller maybe a good player if you don’t look at stats. judging stats he’s a 4th liner.

    • TomNickle says:

      One season into his NHL career with only a handful of shifts in a top six forward role.

      • Bugs says:

        Like Dezzy, you mean? Who got more points playing HALF as many games as Eller?

        Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

        • TomNickle says:

          You mean Desharnais, who had a grand total of 5 more points than Eller, and had powerplay time spoon fed to him almost immediately after being called up.

          I get it Bugs, Eller won’t be an NHL point producer and has no chance of being better than Pouliot or Desharnais, not because he’s not talented enough, not because they’ve had more opportunity, but because Eller doesn’t have any French Canadian in him. Right? Isn’t that where we’re going here Bugs. He ain’t French so he ain’t worth a damn right?

          • Bugs says:

            Uhhhh, yes, Tommy, that’s exactly it. You’ve certainly pegged my character.
            Dezzy got more points playing half Eller’s games because he’s French and not because he’s a more dangerous offensive player than Eller will ever be.
            And also, by extension, Eller is not worth a damn because he’s not French. Carey Price ain’t worth a damn. Cammalleri ain’t worth a damn. Gionta ain’t worth a damn. Markov ain’t worth a damn.
            NO ONE who ISN’T French on the club is worth a damn.
            Yes. THAT’S where I’m going with this. THAT’S what I’m trying to say. You hit it on the head.
            Bravo, sir. Well done.
            As an EXTRA bonus, you may now rejoice that you no longer have to PRETEND the debate has anything to do with what we see with our own eyes on the ice and can instead concentrate on my racism and xenophobia, thereby giving you a CLEAR edge in integrity and therefore, credibility.
            Yay for Tommy!

            Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

          • TomNickle says:

            When players of comparable skill set, work ethic and production come up in conversation, it ain’t a coincidence that Bugsy goes with the French Canadian.

            Let’s objectively look at Eller and Desharnais and say that Desharnais is better than Eller ever will be even though Desharnais has more professional experience, wasn’t drafted and slowed down to the speed of the tortoise in his final 15 games of the year. Not a surprise that the hare jumped to the conclusion that Eller won’t be as good, after all, he don’t do interviews in French.

            Think you might wanna go back and check stats Bugs. Desharnais didn’t score double what Eller did.

          • _Habsoloutly_ says:

            Bugs has been hating on Eller since day one. He’s a moron whos feelings are all butthurt because his boy PooPoo has sucked and Eller has outplayed him.

          • Bugs says:

            Ooookay, so ONE example shows that ACTUAL PRODUCTION can be argued from my end whereas your implication that my preference stems from one being French, and the other, not, can be argud from yours.
            (Of course, Tommy conveniently leaves out my supposed hate for the OTHER players what don’t speak French because…well, his argument would come crashing down on its foundations of stupidity and he can’t have that, so let’s FORGET that there’s never been ANY mention of preference of AK46 over Mathieu Darche on the second for example, or Alex Kovalev over Tendre Guidoune, or my repeated and unbiased hatred of Rbeiro and Theodore, ok? Let’s forget that and stick to Dezzy over Eller as SOLE proof positive of my hatred of those who don’t speak French; it’ll be easier for Tommy this way.)
            Either way, ONE example can hardly be considered a trend.
            Have any…OTHER examples?
            Is does your bird-brained theory rest on this one alone?

            Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

          • HabFanSince72 says:

            Bugz is right. DD was better than Eller last year.

            He’s also 3 years older.

            Eller looked confused and lost much of the time – but so did MaxPac until last year. Eller might yet surprise us.

            Also I don’t see why you say DD had powerplay time “spoon fed” to him. JM put him on the PP because he thought it was his best option.

          • LA Loyalist says:

            Come on, Tom. That’s crap and you know it. I could argue that they’re only playing Eller because they don’t want to look like losers on the Halak deal. We all know if we are honest that Eller should have played in Hamilton last year, you’ll admit that, I would hope.

            Be grateful we have Desharnais to go to, we are finally starting to get some depth. If Desharnais turns into 50% of Mats Naslund (our last 100 pts guy, and small) we will be a happy bunch of campers. Eller may turn out well, too, when he maturs. That’s a high class problem, given what we’ve been through the last two years.

  3. habsfan_61 says:

    dont forget Eller wont be around until late ’11. someone must replace him until then. dd maybe or a new aquistion. also, we dont have to spend to the limit just because the cap went up. we need room for any in season/deadline moves. the next few days up till friday will interesting vis a vis trades/signings. apparently alot of moves are rumoured to be made this year at the draft. should make for a fun few days for sure.pg impress the habs fans and the hio commentariate.

  4. TomNickle says:

    The Habs have over $20 million in cap room with ten forwards, four defensemen and a goalie under contract.

    GREAT cap management.

    • Bill J says:

      Agreed, PG is doing, while Burke talks…

      Knowing how much he can spend on July 1st is very important if he is spending on one or two UFA’s.

      • TomNickle says:

        I don’t think he’ll sign anything other than a backup goalie and possibly a winger. And I don’t see him spending anymore than $3 million in unrestricted free agency.

  5. SeriousFan09 says:

    According to RDS, David Desharnais has signed a 2-year deal for 750,000 in the 1st year, 950,000$ in the 2nd with Montreal. I guess they’re going back for another year with him, try and build his value b/c as I’ve stated, I just don’t see him as a long-term piece.

    Battle for 3rd line C became more interesting but I think DD should go to wing, Eller is the real long-term piece for MTL and he should be developed in that role.

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
    SF09 on Twitter

    • Bill J says:

      I can see DD taking over for Gionta, in the St. Louis type mold.

      On the wing. They did it with success this season.

    • TorontoHabsFan says:

      If Desharnais is moved to the wing, isn’t that pretty much the final nail in Pouliot’s coffin?

      What are we looking at in terms of lines?

      ? – Plekanec – Cammalleri
      Pacioretty – Gomez – Gionta
      Kostitsyn – Eller – Desharnais
      White – Darche – Moen

      • TomNickle says:

        The nail is already in Pouliot’s coffin. We now have ten forwards under contract with Pyatt and White restricted free agents.

        • SeriousFan09 says:

          Praying other signings make Pyatt irrelevant. Still like the idea of Max Talbot with Moen and White to start next season.

          – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
          SF09 on Twitter

          • TorontoHabsFan says:

            Did you come around to that decision after our conversation yesterday? 😀

            Would that put Darche as the 13th forward again?

          • TomNickle says:

            I think you’re forgetting Pyatt’s junior and AHL careers. He’s shown excellent offensive ability once he’s had time to adapt to the pace of the league he’s playing in. His finishing ability hasn’t been good but that could easily be the product of playing one out of every two games and only seeing 5-10 minutes of icetime when he is in the lineup.

            I’d like to give him another chance on Desharnais’ left wing this season.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            I’ve had the idea for a few days, I think Talbot would round out a good, tough and defensively responsible 4th line for MTL. As for Darche, you could play him with Eller and Desharnais I think.

            Tom, I appreciate Pyatt’s lower-league numbers but he’s just not showing enough to make me think he’s more useful than say adding Talbot, playing White each night or playing Darche. Some guys can’t take their lower-league scoring and use it in the NHL.

            – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
            SF09 on Twitter

          • 24moreCups says:

            I’d like it if we got Talbot, thought for awhile now he would be a good fit, specially in place of Pyatt.

            And I hope we sign White soon.

      • Favorite Son says:

        AK will start the season with Plek and Cammi…don’t know why everyone is putting a question mark there

        • TorontoHabsFan says:

          He seemed to click with Eller pretty good late last year. I suspect he’ll start there…unless Eller isn’t ready to return by the start of the season, then he’ll be bumped up.

    • It also was said on TSN too.

    • Bugs says:

      Yeah but…Dezzy is a 2nd-liner and Eller is a 3rd.
      Gosh bless the Dane but he ain’t no pt-producer; Dezzy is.
      Imo, Dezzy should be given a bigger piece of the pie and Eller developed into a shut-down defensive stalwart.
      Again, just my opinion; certainly not the truth of all things.
      Edit: hell, I’ll go further. Said it last year, may as well say it again. I think, given the tools to succeed, he will lead the team in pts. I think he can be top10-15 in the League end of the year.
      I think he’s another Marc Savard.
      It is possible, however, that I’m blinded by my zealous encouragement of him. If this is the case, please forgive me. If it AIN’T…wooo-hoo!

      Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Serious – Desharnais is 24.

      At his age Martin St.Louis split the season between Calgary and the AHL. In the NHL he played 15 games and had 3 goals and 56 assists.

      Obviously that doesn’t mean DD will bloom like St.Louis but they are very similar.

      Re: DD I’d say a guy who scores a point every other game in his rookie season, obviously has a big heart, and tries on every shift, is someone I’m optimistic about.

      • TorontoHabsFan says:

        I think the difference is that St Louis is an extremely quick player and Desharnais (as much as I love the guy) isn’t. I think that for smaller players to be dominant they need to be very fast (like Gionta).

        Having average speed doesn’t mean that Desharnais won’t have a successful NHL career – but it does make the likelihood of him becoming a top line player more remote.

        That being said, that guy seems to have a truckload of heart – and that can make up for a lot of shortcomings (no pun intended). I’d love for him to become a 40-50 pt guy…few guys would deserve it more.

  6. Bill J says:

    Per Renaud Lavoie. David Desharnais signed for 2 years. 2011-2012 750 000 + 2012-2013 950 000.

    One way deal. No more AHL for him.

  7. GrimJim says:

    FYI, TSN.ca video player has a series called “On The Clock” with Craig Button that gives 2 minute analysis of all 7 canadian NHL teams’ draft options and team needs, if anyone is interested…

  8. SeriousFan09 says:

    Quick interview with Mark MacMillan, MTL’s 4th-round selection out of the 2010 NHL Draft. The RW/C is looking to add bulk, he weighed a mere 150 on draft day as a 6′ player. He’s set to attend North Dakota next season which will allow him to add bulk while developing his skills.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
    SF09 on Twitter

  9. mike3131 says:

    Re: Jagr, I MIGHT be working out in the same gym as Jagr. If so, I’ll do some scouting myself…

    ♪ And we’re livin’ here in Allentown… ♪

  10. adamkennelly says:

    Habs are not signing Wiz – going to cost too much cashola and we need the help up front. Any line up with Moen or White as our toughest player is a losing proposition. Can’t have both Eller and DD on this roster and please no Jagr. Team was pretty good last year – with huge pieces missing in Markov and Gorges – clearly the places we need to get better are 5 on 5 scoring and physicality – easy enough to fix in my opinion – if you surround our skilled guys with a little bit of size – makes their life easier, they play better – score more goals. Done.

    If it were me, I would go after Umberger and Boll from Columbus and sign Cam Janssen for those especially irritating opponents.

  11. CHsam says:

    Someone brought it up here, and I think they’re right. I don’t think Jagr would fit into Le System, though I think signing him could have it’s advantages. I think PG should find a winger who can fit into the system with speed, skill, and sone grit…. Question is who?

  12. habs001 says:

    everyone is looking for a 30-40 goal winger….well we have that player….camm has to produce at at least 30 goals next year…a mobile /offensive d would also improve our scoring and getting the wiz with markov would be huge…we need to be way better in winning faceoffs in the opposition zone and in our zone….moen,pyatt,white,pouliot,halpern,eller,darche,dd …out of these forwards some will be back and some will not but more likely than not their production will not be much better than last year…eller is still a year or two away from potential production, dd may produce but may not be kept…the rest are what they are…3-15 goal players

  13. SmartDog says:

    Don Cherry (Scott Gomez’s idol) has this thing where he says “ain’t he a beauty?” about tough soldiers and occasionally about players. I’m not a Cherry fan (as you may know) but that’s what I think when I think of Max. Even the look of him in the Habs uniform, big kid, square jaw, focused eyes. And when he speaks I think of the time he was on the radio in the interview where he said he’d rather be a top 6 in Hamilton than up and down the ranks in Montreal… and I thought, this kid has smarts and is up front and honest.

    Max, you are AWESOME. Keep the training up, keep your head up, and come back and score hatfuls of goals on Thomas.
    Pleks has been my favorite Hab since he arrived in Montreal, but you’re making me think I need two favorite players.

  14. V says:

    Wow. Seeing lots of fantasy lineups without DD. I sure hope you’re wrong (and suspect you are).

    Something tells me this guy could be special and I would hate (and be shocked) if the Habs gave up on him just after he has arrived. When he played, he was very solid for them in both the regular and play-off season with lots of precedent that he just keeps getting better the more he is climatized to a new level.

    • habby46 says:

      Smelly feet?

      • V says:

        I actually think they are both going to be good. I guess your question is who to keep… I think it’s too early to decide. I would take DD on the wing over Pouliot (and I like Pouliot).

        Pouliot has great potential with a history of not being able to access it… DD is a surer bet IMO.

    • habby46 says:

      It is between him and Eller for the third line spot. One of them is going to be good but not both. The question is, which one?

      • GrimJim says:

        IMO it would be nice to be able to slot DD in at the wing on the 3rd line with Eller and AKost (assuming PG can find a consistent power forward for Pleks line). Then we gain DD scoring prowness and insulate him somewhat with the bigger bodies. That would also give us a RH face-off man paired with the LH Eller.

    • LA Loyalist says:

      I agree, I like DDs gonads better than Gomer’s. That said, for DD to be successful he needs some aggressive decently sized wingers to dig the puck and take advantage of DD’s creativity. Are we willing/able to give him that support?

  15. SeriousFan09 says:

    Here’s one that you have to chuckle at, Chuck Fletcher, GM of MIN Wild on Guimauve: Progressing, should come to camp 100 percent and “in the best shape of his young playing career.”

    So he’s weaned himself down to one jumbo poutine a day.

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
    SF09 on Twitter

    • shiram says:

      Jumbo poutine with smoked-meat, it’s good for proteins you know.

    • SmartDog says:

      Yeah he SHOULD…
      And he SHOULD have done it here…
      And he SHOULD have done it last year.

    • Chris says:

      Given how much he has battled groin and abdominal issues, my hope is that the Wild tell him to cut down on the bulk and drop to a more reasonable playing weight. 230 pounds is quite a lot on a 6’2″ frame, and it has got to be hard on his body to play at that weight.

      The NHL obsession with heavier guys is understandable, but I think it hurts a lot of these guys. I still think AK46 should be playing 10-15 pounds lighter than he does to get a bit more explosive acceleration and top-end speed. Yes, he might not get to hit as hard as he can now, but being 200 pounds or less hasn’t hurt a lot of the top-end NHL players.

      • Pronger has said similar things about Chara, but he seems to be a special specimen.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        I think in a perfect world you’d be right, but with the stamina needed for a long, long season, and travel, a lot of guys have trouble keeping weight on (not the Tender One, obviously). When I played in college I lost weight every week (god I’d trade for some of that metabolism now).

        I trust the teams have nutritionist working with these guys to optimize their energy and overall food – g*d I hope so!

  16. habby46 says:

    Cammy – Pleks – Jagr
    Pacioretty – Gomez – Gionta
    Pouliot? – Eller – AK46
    Moen – White – Darche

    That third line could be very dangerous but Pouliot is a big question mark. Do the habs resign him? Does he finally have a breakout year? The first line I am loving. Jagr, he is the definition of “brick shit house”. If we don’t land Jagr I am comfortable with playing Andrei on the first line. Could we finally have an effective 4th line of checkers? I think so! If Max can bounce back from his injury and Gomez ‘smartens’ up we could be in for a treat with the second line.

    Markov – Gorges
    Gill – Subban
    Yemelin – Spacek (Wiz!?)

    This Defence has the potensial to be one of the best in league IMO. If we can somehow manage to sign The Wiz, we have the best defence in the league. I have no idea what the pairings might look like but it really doesn’t matter.


    I am not a huge fan of Auld but who cares when we have Price as the #1. Best goalie under 25 in the league.

    • shiram says:

      Jagr again… People pencil him in as if he was already signed.
      I very much doubt he comes to Mtl, and am not sure he would be a bonafide first line winger, not anymore anyways.

      • habby46 says:

        It’s not as fun to be 100% realistic!

        • shiram says:

          I feel like alot of people are getting their hopes up, but from all I read, it just seems that if he comes to the NHL, he would most likely go somewhere else then MTL.
          And that’s after a big if, this one, if he comes to the NHL…

          • habby46 says:

            Like I said in my original post, I am totally comfortable playing AK46 on the top line. I think as long as the team stays healthy for most of the year they can get the job done. Although a big top six forward would be dreamy.

  17. mrhabby says:

    crosby for gomez.

    stamkos to TO..offer sheet.

    ak, pics for Carter.

    burkes got a big mouth.

  18. Neutral says:

    If I’m reading things right, so far the 1st and 2nd lines remain intact as 2010-2011, which means no offence improvement thus far. so if we don’t improve our 3rd and 4th lines we will have to depend on the Defence with or without a powerplay to improve on the offence or we’ll be pretty much looking at the same team as we had last year unless a surprise comes out of training camp. I know it’s early yet but right now that’s what we are looking at.

    • Rugger says:

      That’s one way to look at it, another way is to consider we only had Max for 37 games last year and the early ones were not top line, so we have added a projected 30 goal scorer to Gomez’s line (based upon 14 in 37 games). We only had Markov for 5, so that has got to improve the offense as well.

    • Mats Naslund says:

      Are you seriously asking whether you’re reading things right by stating that we have the same team as last season even though we’re 10 days from the start of Free Agency (July 1st), the date before which if a GM contacts players from other teams he would be guilty of tampering?

      Get serious. Secondarily, Gauthier has added 2 new defensemen to our system with a few other signings of euros already. But yes… its safe to assume PG will not make another move prior to OCT.

      • Un Canadien errant says:

        Neutal, Mats is right, slow down. Also, lower your expectations. In a salary cap world, with a depleted farm system, finding top 6 forwards is a little bit of a problem. Our best bet to improve this year is that we focus on a strong D (sign Wiz, say goodbye and thank you to Hamrlik, leave Spacek at the bus station during training camp), hope our forwards stay healthy and develop their game from last season (Kostitsyn, Desharnais, Eller, Pacioretty). Heck, maybe Gomez shows up in shape and chips in 50-60 points.

        Let’s see what the team looks like in camp, cross our fingers, and really shoot for 2013.

        “I hate the Bruins more than the Nordiques, who I hate more than the Flyers.”

  19. SeriousFan09 says:

    Pacioretty is on a conference call with the media about his new deal.

    Dave Stubbs tweets Pacioretty says he’s up 10 pounds and finds himself faster on his skates. Talk about filling out as a prototypical power forward!

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
    SF09 on Twitter

  20. Ian Cobb says:

    This is a repeat post about our 2011 HIO FAN SUMMIT.

    – Over the years many have travelled from as far as the Yukon, Calif, and Hong Kong to meet and great their fellow HIO community. Great weekend Summit planned for both young and old. Dates and game ticket prices at the end of July.

    Be ready again this year to send me a money order for game seats as soon as the club notifies me at the end of July, as to price and sections available. If you are interested in better, but more expensive seats, we will be able to get them this year. Our HIO group is being given some preferential treatment. We have a choice of how many seats and in better sections if we want them. Let me know after I get all the information.

    Everyone is welcome to this years HIO weekend Summit in Montreal, bring the whole family and meet your fellow HIO family members this year.

    I received two letters pertaining to our 2010 Annual Hockey Inside Out Fan Weekend Summit. One from Anna Gainey thanking us for our donation of $1200 again this past year to the Gainey Children’s Foundation. Hockey Inside Out Hab Fans have now raised over $5000 in total for this charity. We are a very generous group!

    I also received a letter from Reg Houle thanking us for our continued support. And that he will see us all at next years Summit

    And below I received a letter reminding us that the dates for our next years Summit will be out at the end of July. I will pick the best dates that gives us a game Friday at Hurley’s and Saturday at the Bell Center.

    Dave Stubbs mention to me that he will try to get a few players to hang out with us for a while this year.

    So pay attention to the site so you do not miss out on 2011 Summit tickets that have to be paid and ordered well in advance.
    Some disappointed HIO members missed out on tickets last year because they were on summer vacation when we collected for the tickets and ordered them.

    Dear Mr. Cobb,

    On behalf of the entire Canadiens organization, I would like to thank you for your support during this past hockey season. Gathering a group of fans for a game at the Bell Centre requires a lot of time on the part of the group organizer. To that end, your involvement is greatly appreciated.

    Though our playoff run was unfortunately too short, it was nevertheless exciting from start to finish. Pierre Gauthier and his team are already planning for next season and we feel we can build on a solid core of promising young players and talented veterans.

    At the end of July, we will forward to you the official home game calendar for the 2011-12 season and all the details regarding group sales and our ice rental programs. The information will also be available at the same time on our Web site, canadiens.com.

    I would like to take this opportunity to wish you a great summer –

    I’m looking forward to seeing you all again in September. Until then, please do not hesitate to communicate with me or our group sales team.

    Pierre Constant
    Director, Group Sales
    Club de hockey Canadien

  21. HardHabits says:

    HH lowers/raises/sets the Gomez bar.

    10-15 goals
    45-50 assists
    60 points
    50.1% face-offs

    Anything less than 10 goals would be disastrous but let’s face it, if Gomez gets 15 goals we’ll all be happy, 20 and we’ll be planning the parade. Nevertheless, 10, 15, or anything in between, his points total should be close to and hopefully exceed 60 points for his season to be considered not a bust.

    Another minus season would be unacceptable as well. He’s had his best two-way years with the Devils, but that was their forte. Even so he was amongst those team’s leaders in that category. What he’s never had in his career except once was a double digit minus year. Minus 15 is very bad. I attribute the bulk of those negative points to mental errors. He needs to be a plus player to be successful, ergo for the Habs.

    Last season was Gomez’ only one in recent years where he was below 50% in face-offs. His best years had him at 52%. If he can attain that I would say he’s put in the effort. Anything less than 50.1% would be unacceptable.

    I think ideally SG should be played 17-18 minutes per game.

    That fits into my hope that the Habs next season, are ready and able to roll 4 lines, have 6 defence-men that can all log 20 minutes if need be and have a back-up that get’s 15-20 games. All realistic and doable.

    That would show a team well balanced, the cake, sprinkled with elite talent, the icing.

    • shiram says:

      Those are number that based on his history you’d think he can reach.
      I hope he does, and if not, well down a line, and try again.
      Last season was about trying to get someone who could make Gomez work, Patches was on the right way, and hopefully with a full season, it will work.

      Still, I’m a pessimist on the Gomez debate…

    • habby46 says:

      100% agree, and as much as I want to log onto this site one day and see that he has been traded, I truely believe he is going to have a very good year. I can see 65 points, most being assists. If Pacioretty can play like he was before the injury then Gomez will succeed.

    • NCRhabsfan says:

      So, if I understand this correctly, the “best” we think SG can do is 10-15 goals, 60 pts, and perhaps a FO winning pct a hair over 50%. We would be “happy” with that? Crosby/Ovechkin/Sedin-type money and we’re hoping for 10-15 goals??? Here’s a question, ignoring the $8M he will earn next year, would you advocate that PG use $4M of cap space to sign a UFA that provides no physical presence, best case is likely to score 10-15 goals (and that, dependant on a huge amount of TOI and PP time), may, if we’re lucky, win more faceoffs than he loses, needs a huge resurgence to avoid being a defensive liability and is on the wrong side of 35? At the end of the day isn’t that the real question? Are you better served using up the $4M in cap space you can save by divesting the team of SG, or are you better off keeping him. Even if he hits all your targets, that’s not much production for $4M. And if he doesn’t, and there is nothing to suggest that he will, it becomes the boat anchor that sucks your team to the bottom of the standings. I’m not saying SG wouldn’t be a nice guy to have if he was getting paid what he’s worth, but at his current cap price keeping him on the club is simply a bad business decision. Would you rather have Wiz or Gomez? Some other UFA or Gomez? That’s the question.

    • Talik Sanis says:

      Sometimes I find that you are overly pessimistic about the team in regards to our collective physicality, “size and grit.” Certainly this is a legitimate issue, but at times you might be accused of overstating the matter.

      Here, however, I believe that you are being overly optimistic. If he has any professional drive and work ethic, Gomez will produce better than last year, as he will work hard during the summer and likely be flanked by two legitimate top six forwards. However, I believe his greatest flaws will remain, regardless of who he plays with.

      He will remain as predictable in the offensive zone, and his rushes as easy to defend against as in the previous two years. Further, his playmaking mentality did not seem to shift during the entire season, where he scored one of his seven goals by missing an attempt at a pass and others by simple fluke. I can’t foresee any changes in the way he plays the game, thus I cannot see how he can break ten goals.

      I also don’t know if any of our players will break sixty points, least of all Gomez. I’m pessimistic about our chances of getting through the next year without several injuries to some of our best players, due in part to a lack of size dispersed throughout the top six (something that I hope will be remedied through trade and free-agency). Our defense first mentality, including our propensity to sit back on leads, will also hamper production as well.

      Perhaps, however, I’m being overly pessimistic this time. If we can avoid injury, and, critically, Gionta’s shooting percentage returns to form, Gomez may see reasonable second-line center point totals.
      Further, if Gautier addresses our lack of goal-scoring while adding skilled players with reasonable size and Martin proves more adaptable than I give him credit for, we may have a team that lives up to your hopes, and can be more successful.

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      “10-15 goals
      45-50 assists
      60 points
      50.1% face-offs”

      If Gomez does all that I won’t blame him. Might as well set the bar for Lars Eller

      15-20 goals
      15-20 assists
      35 points (that’s 5 on 5 points!!)
      50.1% face offs
      plus earn time on the PK or PP

      Last year Eller was out scored by both Pouliot and Desharnais. He needs to prove he’s better than those players to impress me.

      * Ville Leino would make Sergei Samsonov look like Alex Kovalev *

  22. Mattyleg says:

    For those of you who didn’t see it: http://img849.imageshack.us/img849/477/charazilla.jpg

    For those of you who did….

    I think Gomez is going to have a ‘New Breakout Year.’

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  23. HabFanSince72 says:

    Another reason to sign the Wiz:

    Next year Gill and Spacek are gone, and Markov is 33. Our only sure d-men starters for 2012 are PK and Gorges.

    Weber and Yemelin might pan out, but even if they do there is no other defenceman in the Habs’ system who has any hope of making the NHL next year.

  24. Bill J says:

    So HockeyPutz Eklund can’t even get his FACTS right when discussin his made up rumours…

    It’s official the auction is on. The three main teams: Pittsburgh, Montreal, and Detroit, according to Jagr’s agent, Petr Svoboda (not the former player of the same name).

    Uhm Eklund – YES IT IS THE SAME Petr Svoboda who played for the Habs!

    • Bugs says:

      This “Eklund is unreliable” horse is sooooo dead…
      Ah, what the hell, give’m another kick.

      Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

      • Bill J says:

        Uhm no – it NEVER gets old.

        & BTW, people who think Yemelin will be playing in the NHL THIS YEAR…. Are realists, otherwise PG would not have signed him…

        Oh and speaking of Dead Horse beating…. You mean like you’ve done with Pouliot & previous to that Kovalev ?

        Perhaps you should keep your opinions to yourself a bit more often, it comes back to haunt you when you spout off.

        • Bugs says:

          It comes back to haunt me how, by you saying so?
          “Realist” or not (chuckle), Emelin and/or Diaz will NOT be ahead of Webber on the depth chart come start of the season.
          Independently of ANY of our opinions, that’s how it’s gonna be. Because we’re not Mickey Mouse. Ok?
          …realist…that’s funny.

          Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

          • Bill J says:

            Chuckle as much as you want, your rude replies only paint you as the greatest of all trolls.

            I guess your just a P.O.S., I mean normal people do not speak to others they do not know in the manner you do.

            Keep on trolling, and please skip over my posts. Your opinion does not matter to me, as you more often then not act like an imbecile with a vocabulary.

          • Bugs says:

            Rude? You mean, when I DIDN’T say “yessuh, massa, you be right I be haunted after spoutin off, massa”? That what you mean by “rude”? Aaaand, that makes me a “troll”, yes? Hmm, there must be some kinda reasoning behind such a conclusion but for the life’o’me, I can’t see it. No, it just looks like the wounded ego of a petulant teenager actin up in order to save face from this end.
            Maybe one day, by working really, really hard and being really, really “realist” like you, I’ll be able to “speak” properly and call folks “Ps of s”.
            THAT’S how one who is NOT rude behaves, right, Billy?
            And here’s tip: you shouldn’t REPLY to folks whose opinions “don’t matter to you”. Contradiction in terms there, kid.

            Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

          • Bill J says:

            Just because you believe your BS, doesn’t make it any more real. But keep dishing it. True colours & all.

          • Bugs says:

            Goodness sake, kid, grow up. Connoisseur of WHAT’S “real” and what isn’t that you are…
            You just keep calling me a “p.o.s.”, ok? All you’re good for apparently…
            …true colors…(mmph!)…classic.

            Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

          • Bill J says:

            kid, that’s funny stuff. But then again, you are you. Glad you enjoy yourself reading, and dissecting what I say.

          • Bugs says:

            Yeah, I especially liked the part somewhere in your 4 replies about how my opinion doesn’t matter to you…

            Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

          • Bill J says:

            Man you are dumb. While I think your opinion is garbage, that does not exclude me from replying to your idiocy.

            Now go outside kiddo, get off your mommys computer in the basement.

  25. Sean Bonjovi says:

    If PG chose not to spend up to the salary cap could he then argue that Gomez’s contract is not hurting the team?

    * Ville Leino would make Sergei Samsonov look like Alex Kovalev *

  26. Neutral says:

    Hartnell is a good 2nd line left winger are you gonna pay him $4,000,000 and play him on the 3rd line

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      No, play him on the 1st line and put Kostitsyn with Eller on the 3rd.

      After we trade our 17th pick, Desharnais and another prospect to Philadelphia so that they can afford the goaltender they have the rights to under the cap.

      Philadelphia has no choice but to trade one or two big contacts if they want to squeeze Bryzgalov in and have a goaltender for once.

      • SeriousFan09 says:

        If Philly needs to salary-dump Hartnell, we shouldn’t send them our 1st and two prospects. Especially with our need to restock the farm, keeping our 1st is important especially with Hartnell a UFA in two years and no guarantee he stays.

        – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
        SF09 on Twitter

        • shiram says:

          Curious as to what you’d trade for Hartnell, he fits the bill of what we need very nicely.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            Simon Gagne went for D Matt Walker, a journeyman and a 4th-round pick. He made 1 million more per year than Hartnell and had 1 year left on his contract, granted he had injury issues but still had two 40-goal seasons on his resume and a playoff pedigree.

            I would send them DD and a 3rd, which is fair, we send them someone who can contribute back plus a pick, (which they need, their farm system is quite weak) and they are free of the salary they can’t afford to keep if they want to have a real goalie. Others might offer more BUT MTL shouldn’t let themselves get caught in a bidding war.

            – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
            SF09 on Twitter

          • shiram says:

            I’d love that deal, but I guess Philly is in the driving seat, as I’m sure Hartnell could help out alot of teams, and he does not bring as many question marks as Gagné did.

        • Hobie Hansen says:

          What do you think the Flyers are looking for? I thought Desharnais and 17th wouldn’t be enough?

    • Mattyleg says:

      What a very neutral use of punctuation no question marks commas or periods and who is you

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • issie74 says:

      Does anyone really think it’s as easy as having the cap space to get Hartnell …. think again,Holgren will be asking a lot for him and remember it won’t be more players,he can’t afford them.He will be asking for draft picks,keeping in mind Burke received a first and second for Kaberle.


  27. Chris says:

    Random thoughts of the day:

    Gomez is going nowhere this season, and probably not tradeable next season unless he can bounce back at least a little offensively…when Bryan McCabe was in this situation, he was still a productive offensive player. The same can’t be said for Gomez.

    I see some are framing the debate as Yemelin vs. Weber. I see it more as Yemelin and Weber, with Weber as a 4th line forward and PP pointman. I like Weber a lot, and would like to see him play the whole year in Montreal. But the Habs need Yemelin to succeed as a defensive player to groom him as Gill’s replacement.

    Good signing of Pacioretty…2 years keeps him hungry for a bigger RFA deal, and the total is very reasonable.

    Brad Richards is not coming to Montreal. Los Angeles is the most likely destination (they have cap space and a good supporting cast, and want a marquee center to go with Kopitar). Toronto will probably also bid high as they are desperate for a premier #1 center.

    Niklas Hjalmarsson is available. Probably too rich for Montreal’s liking with 3 years at $3.5 Million left on his deal, but he is an intriguing player. At 25 years old, he should just be hitting his prime as a defenceman…remember, Josh Gorges really only hit his stride as a 24 year old.

    Half the Flyers roster is being dangled as trade bait…wouldn’t be surprised to see the Leafs take a run at Jeff Carter, and Matt Carle should also generate some interest…no shot to speak of (1 goal!), but he still put up a very respectable 40 points and can log heavy minutes. He’d look good in Montreal… 🙂

    EDIT: Forgot to point out that when looking at Montreal’s cap situation, you can’t just look at this summer when theorizing about long-term deals for UFA’s. Montreal is in good shape this summer, but might face a crunch next summer when P.K. Subban and Carey Price are definitely getting massive raises. Even as RFA’s, the team can not afford to play hardball with its future core players…Price especially is getting some major coin if he has another year like last season. Yemelin and Eller could also be looking at raises as they come off entry-level deals. But that is a topic for next summer, I suppose, and I hope we have this problem, because it means everybody played well! 🙂

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      Kings could certainly use Richards and with the cap getting kicked to close to 64 million, but they’d have to find a way to offload Penner or Smyth to make the room potentially, 6-7 million for Doughty and 6-7 million for Brad means they’re at 59-61 million and needing to extend Simmonds and fill out 3 other forward spots.

      – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
      SF09 on Twitter

      • Chris says:

        I see Doughty getting a similar deal to Duncan Keith ($5.538 M cap hit) or setting for a shorter term deal to raise his value after a not so great season last year.

        I agree that one of Penner or Smyth might be trade-bait, as is Willie Mitchell. I will be a bit shocked if the Kings aren’t active on the trade market this summer…maybe they bypass Richards altogether and make a run at Malkin, who they have long coveted and are one of the few teams that can offer up what Pittsburgh needs in return.

        The Kings have a rich farm-system that is ready to promote players. Some are on somewhat expensive entry level deals (Thomas Hickey ($1.3 M) and Brayden Schenn ($3.1 M)), but most can be slotted in to fill out the roster quite cheaply: Tyler Toffoli ($750 k), Slava Voynov ($800 k), Andrei Loktionov ($800 k) and Nic DesLauriers ($600k).

    • G-Man says:

      What do you expect from Gomez?
      GP G A PTS
      2005-06 New Jersey Devils NHL 82 33 51 84
      2006-07 New Jersey Devils NHL 72 13 47 60
      2007-08 New York Rangers NHL 81 16 54 70
      2008-09 New York Rangers NHL 77 16 42 58
      2009-10 Montreal Canadiens NHL 78 12 47 59
      2010-11 Montreal Canadiens NHL 80 7 31 38

      He has underperformed in 1 season out of the last 6 and all posters here say the same thing: he’s lousy and should be put in the minors. Every player has a season or 2 in 10 to 12 years that are crap. The kind of season where everything goes wrong. Gomez has just had his. How about we wait for the end of October before throwing him under the bus for the millionth time on this site?

      Niklas Hjalmarsson is available because, surprise, surprise, Chicago overpaid an over-rated Dman. No thanks.

      • Chris says:

        Those last 3 seasons have seen him ranked 59th, 27th and 26th amongst NHL centers in scoring. In those years, he ranked 24th, 19th and 15th in ice time. You can frame it however you wish, but for me, Scott Gomez is at best an average hockey player in today’s NHL.

        If Gomez were contributing on the penalty kill, or throwing hits, or elevating the play of his linemates or adding intangibles because of his leadership, I could live with the lack of production. But I simply don’t see it.

        I guess we’ll have to agree to disagree.

    • DearyLeary says:

      Gomez’s contract becomes more workable after this season. He has a high cap hit with a lower payday (5.5 million after this season, and then 4.5 the season after).

      What this does is it helps poorer teams reach their salary floor, without having to pay as much. Gomez would essentially be a free 2 million dollars towards the floor (which a lot small market teams need help with).

      Now, we won’t get much in return, but after next season we’ll have a pretty strong young core to build around (in Price, PK, Pacioretty, and Eller, with a good core of vets in Pleks, Gionta, and Cammalleri to support). With Gomez’s cap hit off the books we could build a very strong team around those parts. So a straight salary dump makes sense depending on the potential free agent class.

      • Chris says:

        It becomes more workable, but $5.5 M is still a lot to pay. If he throws up another 35-40 point season, it would be pretty tough for any GM to make that deal and convince their fans it was anything but a white flag on the coming season.

        • TorontoHabsFan says:

          I suspect that after the CBA expires next offseason that there will be a penalty free buyout window (like they did last time). It would be in both sides’ best interests…nobody is benefitting from having players like Redden earning $6m to play in the minors.

          (of course trading him for something…anything…would be better than a buyout. But either way, this looks like Gomez’ last year in Montreal)

  28. HFX-HabFan says:

    Haven’t been on here in a while, so I don’t know if this name has been thrown out there at all, but how about Trent Hunter?

    He’s a big-bodied winger, shoots right, plays physical and throws lots of hits, and has a couple of 20-goal seasons under his belt. He’d be ideal for the third line, but in case of injuries could take on top-six minutes and not look out of place (unlike when Moen or Darche have to play on a scoring line).

    Hunter has been bothered by injuries the last few years, but if he’s fully healthy, the Isles’ asking price shouldn’t be too high. $2mil for two more years for a physical third liner with 15-20 goal potential is a good move IMO. Thoughts?

  29. Hobie Hansen says:

    Ya you guys are right hockeydb.com has Yemelin listed differently than the other sites.

    If he’s 6’2″ and 225lbs…that’s great!

    And about who should play…Spacek should be the 7th and Yemelin and Webber should be in.

    That’s if the Habs don’t sign another defender. Then Weber is the odd man out, probably back to hamilton unless they do the smart thing and send Spacek down and pay his salary in Hamilton.

    • G-Man says:

      Markov, Yemelin, Gorges, Subban, Gill, Wiz and Spacek.

      Weber as #7 or worse depending upon camp. Like his shot, but little else. He’s too small and not able to be physical.

  30. scrowe21 says:

    With the cap going up and Florida needing to reach the cap floor.. Im dreaming of Gomez + Pouliot + Weber + 17th overall for Florida’s 1st round pick.. That way Florida takes on some money, a veteran, a young winger who still has potential, young D man who is going to be good… and still get a good prospect at 17th.

    And we lose Gomez and his cap hit.. draft Huberdeau or Couturier… sign a UFA with Gomez’s money.

    Would Florida take that? The draft is kinda wide open this year..

    I think Pouliot is done here anyway. Weber would be the only part I’d be somewhat upset about giving up.

    • HalifaxHabs says:

      hahaha, no Florida wouldn’t consider such an insane video game style trade.

      but I also share your fantasy.

      • scrowe21 says:

        I feel like it could be possible. Maybe I’m just crazy, but I see Jensen and Puempel and other players going around the 17th mark in the draft being just as good as Huberdeau or Couturier.

        • HalifaxHabs says:

          It would be a huge favour to the Habs, so from a Habs fan point of view it could make sense, but if Tallon ever made that deal he’d be the new Mike Milbury of the NHL.

          ok, that’s a little harsh, because Mike Milbury is the biggest joke ever, but you get my drift.

          • toinz says:

            There is a Mike Milbury in the NHL. He is the GM of the same team. Garth Snow is crazy enough to trade out of the number 5 slot.

            The Habs would still have to pay out the behind to get that pick. Eller would have to be in the deal. Possibly even Gorges. (They have Mark Streit already so no need for Weber)

            I would do the number 17 pick, Eller and Gorges for number 5 because Landeskog, Couturier, Larsson AND Huberdeau are all better than what we are giving up. Somebody just has to make sure Garth Snow is having one of his Milburyesque days, with the hopes nobody else gets to him first…

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            Garth Snow has not traded out of the Top 5 since he got into the NYI job to my memory and in 2009, he traded up to get Calvin De Haan at 12th. He seems pretty committed to getting all the top-end young players he can with high picks IMO.

            I would make the trade for Larsson, Huberdeau or Couturier but not Landeskong. Landeskong is at the top 5 because of his work ethic and physical maturity but a lot of scouts say he has no elite ceiling. Huberdeau, now there’s a player I’d covet. Beautiful hands, work ethic and a knack for clutch scoring.

            – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
            SF09 on Twitter

        • Hobie Hansen says:

          We’re all keeping our fingers crossed that Gauthier comes up with a big surprise on draft day! Can’t wait to watch!

          As usual…nothing will probably happen.

          If nothing happens…we may have to ride it out for a couple more years with the makeup we have now. The same basic makeup that beat the Pens and Caps last year and the one that was one shot away from beating the cup champs…could be worse.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            Draft day, my only concern is Habs take on someone with strong upside and not a safety pick in the 1st round. I’d love for some bold move to grab a better prospect if the price is right but at the moment I’m content to see the Habs go 17th if they take a good risk-reward choice.

            – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
            SF09 on Twitter

    • _Habsoloutly_ says:


    • Chris says:

      Every year, we discuss possible trades for a top 3 draft pick. The reality is, we don’t have the depth to give away the kind of talent you need to offer for such a pick. Most top 3 picks in the NHL are better than anything we’ve got to offer…Florida needs a star player to market around, in much the same way Tampa Bay did with Stamkos. They can’t do that with a 17th overall pick.

      Top 3 picks in last 5 seasons:

      2010: Taylor Hall (came on strong in second half), Tyler Seguin (showed flashes, inconsistent), Erik Gudbranson (stayed in OHL)
      2009: John Tavares (star), Victor Hedman (star in the making), Matt Duchene (star)
      2008: Steven Stamkos (superstar), Drew Doughty (superstar), Zach Bogosian (inconsistent, but still growing)
      2007: Patrick Kane (superstar), James vanRiemsdyk (star in the making), Kyle Turris (inconsistent)
      2006: Erik Johnson (solid, potential star), Jordan Staal (solid, potential star), Jonathan Toews (superstar)

      Who went 17th overall in those 5 drafts?
      2010: Joey Hishon (COL, never played)
      2009: David Rundblad (STL, never played)
      2008: Jake Gardiner (ANA, now with Toronto, never played)
      2007: Alexei Cherapanov (NYR, tragically passed away)
      2006: Trevor Lewis (LA Kings, 83 GP, 16 PTS)

      Other recent #17 picks include Martin Hanzal (PHX, 2005), Marek Schwarz (STL, 2004), Zach Parise (NJ, 2003), Boyd Gordon (WSH, 2002), Carlo Colaiacovo (TOR, 2001) and Alexei Mikhnov (EDM< 2000).

      I'm not saying that you are wrong that a similar calibre player can't be found at #17…Parise is a star player. But the odds are much, much lower (1 in 10 versus 1 in 3? 2 in 3?) and the Panthers need a player who can play and be marketed around.

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      Duuuuuude! If you can make it happen pull the trigger.

      “I hate the Bruins more than the Nordiques, who I hate more than the Flyers.”

  31. HardHabits says:

    Newsflash for Bugs.


    HEIGHT: 6′ 2″
    WEIGHT: 223
    BORN: 25 APR 1986 (AGE 25)



    HEIGHT: 5′ 11″
    WEIGHT: 193
    BORN: 23 SEP 1988 (AGE 22)


    3 inches. 30 pounds.


    YEMELIN wasn’t brought in to not play. Get used to it. YEMELIN is above WEBER on the depth chart.

    Just like Eller is above DD and Pouliot.

    • Bugs says:

      Newsflash for YOU, now: Nik Antropov 6 ft 6 in, 245lbs
      Pavel Bure 5 ft 11 in, 191.
      Depth chart; depth chart!
      Chug that koolaid, mate; chug it down. But whatever you do, don’t base ANY of your analysis on what you’ve seen with your own eyes, ok?
      Cuz that’s stupid.

      Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

      • Iceberg84 says:

        I sort of agree but at the same time, I think it’s different with forwards. There are dozens of small skaters with great stats (Martin St.Louis being one of my favorite NHL stories). At the same time, if you’re going to be a good defenceman, it certainly helps to have a few extra pounds of muscle. How many small, effective defencemen are there in the NHL? I know Montreal has a fondness for em’ but that hasn’t really helped us in years past…

      • SeriousFan09 says:

        Alexei Yemelin is noted as one of the most punishing hitters in the KHL with a mean streak, scouted as such and why he’s a target for MTL. There’s a reason MTL pursued him and not Konstantin Korneev.

        Weber is an under 6′ puck-mover, we have others like him in the system, he can’t provide the kind of impact Montreal needs game by game from the physical aspect. He’s much closer to Markov’s style than PK’s which has him back, he needs to push his puck skills and on-ice vision further so he can be successful. MTL needs a guy who makes you wish you hadn’t gone to the corner for the puck, Weber can’t do that.

        – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
        SF09 on Twitter

        • Bugs says:

          Ohhhhh, in the KHL, ohhhhh…well, then he’s primed for greatness here then, isn’t he?
          Like Karri Ramo, yes? Who’s so, so good in the KHL that…he stayed.
          Well, I’m convinced. No need to actually SEE what he can do cuz he’s so good in a Russian garage league. Yes, that’s how that works.

          Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

          • HalifaxHabs says:

            I have to add to my 2 cents to this debate. Weber defintely scored some clutch goals for us in the playoffs, and I like having him under contract going forward, but I have yet to see him prove himself as a defenceman in Montreals end.

            No doubt he has upside, nice touch with the puck, but there’s a reason he couldn’t crack the top 6 in the playoffs, and they just kept putting him on the 4th line. They were not condfident in his defensive play, and ability to handle the big bodies(yet).

            I guess this debate will be settled come next season, but I’m certainly not convinced Weber is ready to be an every day d-man. As far as Emelin, he better be ready to be a top 6 d-man, or this experiement is a waste of time, and he’ll be back in Russia before the season is out.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            Play well in the AHL, you’re going to be a star NHLer. Play well in the KHL, you’re hopeless for an NHL career. Welcome to Bias 101 Folks. Didn’t say Yemelin would be Vlad Konstantinov reborn but he offers an element Montreal needs on the back end, a physically punishing D rather than another small puck-mover.

            Those KHL kids like Kuznetsov and Tarasenko seemed to run Canada over in the WJC this year despite all those young gritty Canadians with loads of heart and ‘intangibles’.

            How’s Desjardins doing btw? Still trying to get the No. 1 goalie spot on an AHL team as he closes in on his 27th birthday?

            – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
            SF09 on Twitter

          • HFX-HabFan says:

            SF09 with the Desjardins haymaker.

          • Bugs says:

            Who said “play well in the AHL, you’re gonna be a star in the NHL”, Yahoo? I never said that.
            Also, I don’t see how you defend propping up Emelin by bashing Desjardins. One doesn’t prove the other. That argument has no rhetorical merit.

            Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

      • habrez says:

        Bugs- I sorta get what you are saying.

        Last summer when everyone was posting their hypothetical line-ups, they all included Eller on the 3rd or 4th line. I could only think of who had actually ever seen this young kid play, other than on his youtube montage? I, for one, had never seen a Peoria Rivermen game. I’m not even sure where Peoria is.

        As for Yemelin, I have seen him play in the IIHF world championship. I remember trying to pay extra attention to him but somehow barely noticed him (which is normally a good sign for a stay at home defenseman). I like Weber but I see us needing Yemelin a lot more. There must be a reason PG went after him pretty hard, just like Eller.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      Alexei Yemelin
      Born Apr 25 1986 — Togliatti, Russia
      Height 6.00 — Weight 187 — Shoots L

    • savethepuck says:

      I think the fact that Weber is 2 1/2 years younger in his development may be an important fact that you are overlooking. Do you only see height and weight as criteria for determining how valuable a player is?

      “That beautiful bastard scored semi-conscious.” On the Rocket’s Game 7 game winning goal against the Bruin’s April, 1952

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        No I just saw it listed wrong above. relax.

        • savethepuck says:

          I was replying to HardHabit

          “That beautiful bastard scored semi-conscious.” On the Rocket’s Game 7 game winning goal against the Bruin’s April, 1952

        • Un Canadien errant says:

          Hobie, I think the info you’ve got is from when Yemelin got drafted as an 18 year old. It’s been discussed and is accepted that he has grown quite a bit since then, and is reliably listed now as 6’2″ and 220 or thereabouts.

          “I hate the Bruins more than the Nordiques, who I hate more than the Flyers.”

  32. HabFanSince72 says:

    Looks like we might be signing Hamrlik. His agent is talking to Gauthier, and the lack of Wiz activity makes me think he is gone.

    Question is – rather than watch hockey what should I do next winter? I’m leaning towards taking yoga.

    (Because if we sign Hamrlik it’ll be more of the same. More getting outshot by freaking Nashville; more Hamr’s wrist shots from the point on the powerplay; more two on ones and breakaway.; It means that management is happy with the under-achievement and boring hockey of last year. )

    • shiram says:

      I’d dislike having Hamr back, if the team keeps Gill/Spacek.
      I’d dislike having Hamr if he costs more than Gill does.
      Please don’t sign Hamr back, he was great while he was here, but we need new blood, younger blood.

      • issie74 says:

        I just watched Yemelin at the Worlds,I saw him able to box guys out in front of the net,something Hamrlik dosen’t do these days and it isn’t because of size,Hamrlik is a big man.


    • SeriousFan09 says:

      His agent can talk to Gauthier but unless he’s offering Hamrlik at 750k for the season it’s not happening. When Markov and Gorges sign, there will not be a spot for him. He was dead on his feet by March of last season, can’t have a guy who can’t handle the 82 games + playoffs.

      – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
      SF09 on Twitter

      • Viruk42 says:

        Why not? That’s why teams have 7 or 8 Dmen. Subban, Markov, Gorges and Gill are all locks if they sign. Then you’ve got Emelin, Spacek, and…who? According to you, nobody. But frankly, if we resign Hamrlik (who was damn good a lot of the time, despite playing far more than he was expected to, in a far greater role) for around 2mil, I’d be pleased.

        Don’t look at what Hamrlik did the last 2 years as essentially a top pair Dman. He wasn’t supposed to be there, and was forced to after Markov got injured. Look at him as a 3rd pair, sometimes resting in the pressbox. Him, Spacek and Emelin could be a rotating trio, so the two old guys get some rest while Emelin is eased into the NHL. It also means that if Markov gets injured again, we’d have someone who we know can play big minutes, even if he’s not perfect for it.

        I like Weber, but I can’t see him being a big minutes Dman…

        • SeriousFan09 says:

          I completely respect what Hamrlik has done in the past two seasons filling in for Markov but I don’t think he can do it a 3rd time. He’s becoming tired much quicker in the past two seasons and his long career that includes a physically taxing style of play has me hesitant to once again have 3 defencemen over 35 on the back end. I’d rather the Canadiens look to new avenues.

          – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
          SF09 on Twitter

          • Un Canadien errant says:

            Hamrlik could contribute to the team’s success this season if he was resigned, but that would be a tactical move instead of a strategic move. We have to look long-term instead of short-term.

            Let’s agree that Roman has no upside, what we see is what we get. If we had a final hole on D to fill, and we needed a veteran unflappable #6 D who can take a youngster under his wing, then we could consider him. But we already decided to sign Gill, he’ll play that role. Hamrlik would just plug up the roster and prevent Weber and other kids in Hamilton from getting ice time.

            If we get injuries, we can always call him in December and re-sign him or Sopel, but for now let’s give ice time to Yemelin and Weber and PK.

            “I hate the Bruins more than the Nordiques, who I hate more than the Flyers.”

    • Favorite Son says:

      Great, so if Hamr is in, no Weber, no Diaz, no Emelin. Just the same slow defence:

      Hamr-Spacek ?

    • RGM says:

      What do you mean by “lack of Wiz activity” exactly? As you’re keenly aware, information from the 7th floor comes down in a trickle and only when there is news to report. For all we know, Gauthier’s been on the phone with Wiz’s agent for the last two hours after wrapping up the Pacioretty contract.

      During the long summer, we all get to be pretend GM.

    • mrhabby says:

      lets hope not to hammer. he did the time now move on out and retire to a nice country home in the alps.

  33. cheezboie says:

    3rd/4th line sandpaper – Rupp? Joel Ward?
    My armchair GM 11/12 Habs –
    rough salary guess-timates in brackets = cap hit of 56.044 mill
    leaving 7.956 million for in season adjustments (cap ceiling rumored to be 64 million)

    Camm 6 – Pleks 5 – AK46 (off-wing) 3.25
    MaxPac 1.625 – Gomez 7.357/ Desharnais (0.850) – Gio 5
    Darche 0.7 – Eller 1.27 – White (0.9)
    Moen 1.5 – Engqvist 0.900 – Weber (righty) (1) (and on PP a la Streit)
    Pyatt (0.6)

    First call up – Palushaj

    Markov (lefty) (5) – Gorges (lefty) (3)
    Gill (lefty) 2.25 – Subban (righty) 0.875
    Yemelin (lefty) 0.984 – Spacek (lefty) 3.833
    Diaz (righty) 0.9

    first call up – Nash (lefty)

    Price 2.75
    Auld (1)

    -0.5 Laraque buyout
    (would be better if could move Gomez and/or Spacek)



    Gomez for captain of the Hamilton Bulldogs?

    • Bugs says:

      It’s rather shocking how so many of you Emelin koolaid drinkers have so casually tossed Webber to the wayside, preferring to attribute divine right to a KHLer none of us have seen play over the young clutch-playing Swiss defender whose competence we’ve all seen with our own eyes.
      Indeed. Shocking.

      Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

      • shiram says:

        He put him as a forward on the fourth Bugs.

      • Favorite Son says:

        I hope Yemelin or Emelin or whatever the eff his name is doesn’t come here thinking he’s entitled to anything just because he will go straight back to the KHL if he’s sent to Hamilton…he better work hard and prove he can stay by being awesome at training camp.

        • Bugs says:

          No, that’s the koolaid-drinkers’ job to think he’s entitled to a position over others what actually PROVED themselves at this level.
          I have named Yannick Webber.
          I repeat: if either Emelin or Diaz is assigned d-position over Yannick Webber, this club is Mickey Mouse.

          Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

          • HalifaxHabs says:

            when did Weber prove himself as an everyday top 6 NHL defenceman? when he was on the 4th line in the playoffs?

            no doubt Weber is a solid talent, and I’m glad the Habs extended him, but I don’t see that he has “earned” being a starting top 6 defenceman.

            I’m certainly not saying Emelin has earned it yet, but if Emelin looks like a more solid defender during traning camp and pre-seaon, and beats out Weber for a top 6 spot, how does that make the Habs a Mickey mouse franchise?

          • Bugs says:

            By giving him the position BEFORE he “looks like a more solid defender during traning camp and pre-season and beats out Weber for a top 6 spot”, Hally, as opposed to PREMATURELY penciling him in the starting line-up, as a lot of posters seem to be doing.
            Thought I’d made myself clear on that.

            Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

        • issie74 says:

          His deal with the Habs is … If he dosen’t make the team, he returns to the KHL.


      • Welks says:

        I would like to see both Yemelin and Weber earn a spot in the lineup in camp and Spacek as the 7th if they can’t get rid of him in a trade. If they can dump Spacek then Hammer can come back as 7th D at a huge discount. I would much rather see Hammer back there than Spacek. If Yemelin and Weber can earn spots then a line up with would seem pretty promising.

  34. Habby says:

    Ah, NHL. Now you’re pretending like you know what Chara intended when he hit Max. Really?

    From the NHL.com article on Max signing:
    “On March 8, when Boston captain Zdeno Chara inadvertently drove him face-first into the padded partition by the team benches at Bell Centre. Pacioretty suffered a severe concussion and a fracture of the fourth cervical vertebrae and was forced to spend two nights in the hospital. ”

    That first sentence doesn’t even make sense. In the article, they reference TSN for salary cap figures. You’re the NHL. Shouldn’t you have better sources? I think the quality of journalism is a bit lacking.

    The drive for 25 is alive!

  35. Mattyleg says:

    Responding to TN below:
    I think that Hartnell would be amazing as a Hab. He’s the kind of body we need in front of the net. Never afraid to be in front of shots, and always ready to get his nose dirty and stand up for his teammates.

    And if he grows his amazing curly hair back, I just might fall in love…

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  36. dudurules says:


  37. savethepuck says:

    Hopefully we get news on Markov and Gorges too before the draft Friday night. Only 11 days to go til free agency.

    “That beautiful bastard scored semi-conscious.” On the Rocket’s Game 7 game winning goal against the Bruin’s April, 1952

  38. ths says:

    Chara just pulled the plug on the party and sent the hookers home.
    He’s writing an apology now and looking at videos of David Desharnais fighting style

    Ooh Aah Habs on the war path

  39. RiverviewCanadien says:

    I always enjoy reading Eric Engels.

    I completely agree with him on the Jagr matter as well


    • LA Loyalist says:

      Good article.

      I agree that Wizniewski will be targeted by Boston and Detroit. If Boston, they will have a Powerplay Quarterback and we play them what, six times?

      Detroit is less of a concern. If Wiz has to go (which I am against) but if it has to be done – if PG were really clever he would trade Detroit Wiz’s rights this week for a jar of pickles. It would keep him out of Boston. It gives Detroit a year to work him into their system and give Lidstrom easier regular season minutes and have both of them cranked for the playoffs.

      It’s a win-win for us and Detroit and it screws Boston. Always a good thing.

      Let’s see if PG has any Sam Pollock in him at all.

  40. Neutral says:

    I would only get rid of pouliot if there was a better left winger available he’s good for 20 goals with the right players on his line

    • RobertAlanFord says:

      I reckon he’ll be back for the same money, one year contract.

      -When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro-

      • TomNickle says:

        There’s no way in hell Pouliot is retained by the Habs at $1.5 million.

        He wasn’t even allowed to take pre-game warmups in games 5 through 7.

        • Bugs says:

          Why not?
          They re-signed Pac-Man for more having only seen him play half a season. Same with Higgins.
          Poolio has more talent than either and comes in at a rebate. That’s a FREE 30 pts, minimum.
          With potential mega-upside. MORE than Pac-Man and Higgins.
          D’be foolish not to re-sign a dirt-cheap diamond still in its ruff.

          Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

      • davelecave says:

        I don’t see him coming back, JM isn’t exactly his biggest fan.

        • Bugs says:

          JM had a hand in acquiring him in the first place, no?

          Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

          • mrhabby says:

            BP…Just plain sucks and for all those reasons that peeps mentioned over the months. heck he was banished from some of the bruins games.

          • Bugs says:

            “Banished”? Wow.
            Like Soobie was “banished” same amounta games at the start of the season?
            That kind of “banished”? Or a little different?

            Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

    • Favorite Son says:

      I can think of a couple: Laich, Jussi Jokinen, Kopecky (for 3rd line), Leino, even Ben Eager for bottom 6, some decent UFA LWs this year.

    • mrhabby says:

      bugs…you get our drift. how long do we have to wait to see the talent. they will likely give him 1 more shot.

      • Bugs says:

        Did you miss his first 25 games with us? We didn’t wait long to see the talent; we’re just waiting to see it consistently deployed.

        Gone figuratively fishin filibusts L. B. Potter, esq.

  41. TomNickle says:

    If the Flyers want Bryzgalov and they’re willing to shed salary they’re in some big trouble. They just gave up a 1st and 3rd round pick for Versteeg, so he isn’t likely to be going anywhere. Briere is an injury waiting to happen and is signed for another four years. They just recently acquired Meszaros so he isn’t likely to move and they aren’t trading Giroux or Van Riemsdyk and taking that Pronger contract on would be crazy.

    Hartnell, Carter, Richards, Timonen, Carle and Coburn are their only real possibilities in terms of shedding salary. With Pronger’s injury history they would be nuts to move Timonen. So for the sake of reason, let’s take him off the list. Carter was just re-signed, and his name being bounced around is more likely wishful thinking from 29 franchises than it is fact, so let’s take him off.

    Hartnell has two more years at $4.2 million, Richards is said to have been butting heads with Laviolette and the Philadelphia media despises him for his lack of accountability and professionalism. Carle was really struggling prior to Pronger’s arrival and teams will probably shy away from him at his $3.5 million price tag. Coburn has one more year left at $3.2 million.

    With the cap going up they have about $4 million in cap space and 16 players under contract. A minimum of four roster spots to fill. Leighton makes $1.5 million this coming season and it would be reasonable to presume that he’ll be in the AHL. So give them $5.5 million in cap room with 5 spots to fill.

    To sign Bryzgalov will take at least $5.5 million. So they’ll have a minimum of five roster spots to fill by moving a player out to make cap room for the roster filling. Looks like they’ll have to move at least $4 million in salary out. Hartnell appears to be the perfect guy to go. Any interest?

    • mrhabby says:

      yup….take him np..adds toughness, nastiness call it whatever you want. he plays with an edge and is what we need. i have always hated the flyers because there hard to play against…why can’t we have some of that.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        At a minimum, Hartnell replaces Mara’s beard. As usual, it comes down to price and who we have to give up.

        And Amen and blessings to Max 67. He deserves his contract and I wish him a glorious career with the Habs.

      • issie74 says:

        It’s called size and grit. All joking aside I do like Hartnell he “keeps the flies off”in the words of Scotty Bowman.


    • HalifaxHabs says:

      Sure, he’d look great on the wing of an AK & Eller line… but it all comes down to the asking price.

      …maybe they take Moen back, and that would save us 1.5 mil towards the 4.2 this year. I like Moen’s grit, but I think Hartnell has more touch around the net.

    • If anyone said they weren’t interested in Hartnell they should get their heads examined. I hate playing against him which means he’s exactly what the Habs need. He’s not necessarily a fighter, which is good because he’d fit JM’s system better. He’s a defensively responsible 20 goal scorer with size, physicality and a nose for the net. Considering the absolute bargain Tampa Bay got in dealing for Gagne, Hartnell shouldn’t take much to acquire. Maybe Pouliot’s potential as a 3rd line minute eater and scorer could do it, maybe add in a 3rd round pick. That’s an easy trade to make for the Habs imo.

      • TomNickle says:

        I was thinking Desharnais and a mid round pick. Desharnais is cheap and skilled, he would also be insulated by some big bodies. Could be a coup for the Flyers but the goal of trading is obviously for it to work out well for both parties.

    • Mike D says:

      I think 4.2mil is too much for Hartnell. Way too much actually.

      – Honestly yours

      • TomNickle says:

        What would you say this team needs to put themselves in a position to compete for the Stanley Cup?

        My opinion is one player like Hartnell at forward and a tougher mentality on defense. You can’t buy the mentality but you can buy the player.

        If Habs management feels that an impact forward who plays a physical style of game and controls board play is a missing piece. $4.2 million for a chance at the Cup is pretty cheap.

        • Mike D says:

          Hartnell would be a good addition to our roster, I just think his current salary is more than what he’s actually worth. 3.0 – 3.5mil would be better.

          – Honestly yours

      • LA Loyalist says:

        Mike technically you are right, but any REAL Power Forward is over-priced. Signing Max at his new contract is a great deal for us. These guys are rarely available, thus the high cost. As long as the term is reasonable, I think it’s a good deal for us.

        And Tom’s point about DD being insulated by big bodies in Philly makes perfect sense. For us to support DD here to be successful we’d need big wingers for him – which we are short on. It would be a win-win deal, which these deals have to be for them to be anything except fantasy.

        • DD doesn’t need to be insulated by big bodies, he just needs to play against the other team’s bottom 2 lines. Put him on Eller’s wing with AK on the other side and see what happens. My guess is one hell of a 3rd line.

        • Mike D says:

          I hear ya bud. I don’t want to give up DD though. I realize he’s a small player on a small team and all the othe reasons, but I’d really like to keep him.

          If we do trade for Hartnell, I’d rather give them Moen in return, though not sure that would be attractive to Philly as they’d only end up saving 2.7mil on the cap space.

          – Honestly yours

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      Hartnell’s a solid choice, put him with Pleks/Cammy and send them out, a complete line in all aspects.

      – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
      SF09 on Twitter

    • TorontoHabsFan says:

      I remember shifting around the numbers on capgeek after PHI traded for Bryz. I can’t remember exactly, but I think that if they don’t re-sign Leino and ODonnell then they can fit him in.

  42. Neutral says:

    look for players that can win a cup, not players just to make up a roster sick of 1 round hockey team in the playoffs.

  43. Mattyleg says:

    First things first: Patch Back = AWESOME.

    Second things second: http://img849.imageshack.us/img849/477/charazilla.jpg

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  44. habsfansince91 says:

    since we signed him to a two year deal, will he be a RFA or a UFA after this contract ends?

  45. mike3131 says:


    And we’re livin’ here in Allentown…

  46. SeriousFan09 says:

    Deck chairs being rearranged on the Titantic.

    Leafs replacing the assistant coachs, because somehow that makes it all better after giving their divisional rival 2nd and 9th overall in successive drafts. Burke also says he won’t be idle at the Draft or on July 1st, which is refreshing as 29 other GMs were quoted as saying they’re going to sleep in on Free agency and pick names out of a hat at the draft. Only in Toronto is such cliche crap from the GM news.

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
    SF09 on Twitter

    • shiram says:

      If PG was as vocal, it would be reported.

    • TomNickle says:

      Be careful Robert. There are a lot of under performing GMs picking in the top 10 who could easily swap their first rounder out for Burke’s two first rounders.

      Then again, if anyone can ruin a Huberdeau, Murphy or Couturier it’s the Leafs.

      • SeriousFan09 says:

        I can’t think of many GMs who give up a Top 10 pick for two late picks, one of which is so late it might as well be a 2nd-rounder. The draft year is weak, if they want a young gun who can make them good they’ll just pick high.

        – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
        SF09 on Twitter

        • TomNickle says:

          Scott Howson, Chuck Fletcher, Bryan Murray, Garth Snow and Greg Sherman all pick in the top 10. Sherman twice in the top 11.

          Don’t be so sure about that.

        • SeriousFan09 says:

          If Murray is rebuilding (which is he pretty much doing by the way he gave out players this year), than he won’t give away 6th. St. Louis with taking Pietreangelo, Schwartz, Tarasenko are developing a nice core, giving up their pick doesn’t make sense to me. Colorado, it doesn’t make sense to give away a pick that lets them take a name like Larsson and than Zibanejad so they can have late 1sts when they’re rebuilding. Islanders don’t want to spend a dime so they’ll keep drafting lottery picks in the meantime, Garth Snow may not be that good but he’s never turned down the opportunity to draft high. Fletcher and Howson both need the injection of promising youth and the promise where they are picking is far, far better than anything Burke can offer them. Columbus could solve their puck-moving D issue with 8th overall, Minnesota can go after some badly needed offensive talent.

          – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
          SF09 on Twitter

          • TomNickle says:

            You’re giving a lot of general managers who’ve made illogical moves consistently a lot of benefit of the doubt in thinking they’ll make the logical decision by Friday night at 11pm Robert.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            I’m going by earlier patterns, when’s the last time these guys dealt themselves out of the draft lottery? Why does it make sense to do it for two very late picks in the first round? If you’re rebuilding, you use what these teams have in early 1sts, you don’t help out a team that should be doing what you’re doing but foolishly gave away their high picks to a divisional rival.

            These teams want the future and a lot of them want it sooner and for cheap. A high pick is a great way to achieve that and they know it, they haven’t always picked well but they keep going for it because it makes sense, best chance of a star player is earlier in the draft, not 20 picks later.

            – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
            SF09 on Twitter

          • TomNickle says:

            Columbus is looking to add established NHL players, not rebuilding. Same thing for the Wild. Colorado it could be argued are rebuilding but if there’s any truth to them having interest in Vokoun I highly doubt a rebuild is in their plans. Senators are rebuilding but they’re doing it with an old roster, sounds like lip service to the fan base to me.

            Having a high pick doesn’t mean you’re rebuilding.

            That last first round pick is one of the more valuable picks of the draft Robert. Teams have a full night to sleep on a player and worry about whether or not a team in the second round will scoop him up. The 30th overall pick of the draft can prove to be more valuable than #17 in a lot of ways.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            Tom, Columbus has a 25-million dollar debt from player salary last season, adding established NHL players is a bit of a stretch when they can’t afford what they have. The Wild need more than Mikael Granlund in the system for the future as well. Colorado, they hung up on their season’s hopes when they dealt Anderson for Elliott, if anything they plotted to end up in lottery territory and get high picks to build on what Duchene gives them. Sens have Rundblad, Cowen, Butler, Lehner, that’s something to build on and Couturier or Strome would really put them moving forward with O talent.

            Having a high pick doesn’t necessarily mean a true rebuild, but why pass up picking there? You can draft a player who’s likely better and more NHL-ready than you will getting two late 1sts.

            – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
            SF09 on Twitter

  47. SmartDog says:

    Great column by Fraser. If this is all true, I have a lot of respect for old helmet-hair:

    In fact, it does ring true. In a previous column during the Cup Final, Fraser was clear that he thought that Chara shoulda been suspended for the hit on Max. The man’s right and he’s got stones.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Thanks for the link. Here is what Kerry says:

      “It was just four years earlier that I had assessed two game misconducts, one to Steve Begin of Montreal and the other to David Koci of Chicago, for knocking out players with direct hits to the head in separate games I worked that season. Both of the players that were hit in the head were carried off the ice and suffered concussions.

      The day after each game, then V.P. of Officiating, Stephen Walkom called and advised me that they (Walkom & Colin Campbell) deemed each play to be a “good hockey hit.” After the second rescinded game misconduct, I warned Walkom that if that was the position they were taking, to mark my words that in three or four years they would have more players forced out of the game just like Eric Lindros, Keith Primeau and others. “

      • LA Loyalist says:

        Wow. thanks for posting that. Kerry the prophet.

        I’ll take the liberty of pushing it even further. Someone is going to be paralyzed or die before anything changes.

        I don’t know the future any better than anyone else, but it just seems inevitable.

    • DearyLeary says:

      I hated Fraser as a ref, I truly did. This column has given me a complete 180. Fair assessments of the refereeing standard, and unafraid to voice opinions that seem nearly impossible to get through to old Colie.

      Down with the ‘hockey play’, just play hockey.

  48. krob1000 says:

    I have a request regarding the Big Bad Bruins or how they are portrayed on here..yeah they have some big boys but excluding Chara…who were the players in the playoffs that led them? …Krejci, Marchand, Recchi, Ryder, Bergeron, Kelly,Peverley, Seguin,etc. They were fast and offensively deep. Lucic was not very good and Horton got a couple of huuuge goals but for the most part was invisible. The Bruins actually adapted to us and we tried to adapt to themover the last couple of seasons…we tried to go two scoring lines and be a bit grittier, they went 3 lines deep and got prettier….they have the cup we have woulda, coulda and shoulda. The Habs need three lines of depth with at least one interchangeable sub who can move into any spot a on a top line.

    I think the BRuins outdepthed everybody…as opposed the this theory they beat teams up…the toughness they showed was in playing thorugh injury and wavoiding serious injury but I did not see their toughness as important as their depth. they were better offensively than their opponents and they also debunked the myth about the deadline not being important..their pickups were huge in their depth and they looked like more our team that won the conference than they did a nasty bunch. They are thugs in the reg season and definitely played on the edge but in the playoffs the thuggery subsides and hockey breaks out…even against the Bruins…this year they were well equipped for the hockey.

    • SmartDog says:

      True, they had depth (thank you Toronot) but toughness and depth went together. If you are tougher and bigger you are probably going to cause more injuries than you get.

      Well, that and if you have a phenomenal goalie who gets hot at the right times. And that, plus a little help from the zebras is the story of this years playoffs. Period.

      • krob1000 says:

        I can’t help but acknowledge everything you said because it is 100 percent true but they always had toughness….and they couldn’t get anywhere…..they added the speed and depth and I found that more often than not it was those guys that carried the play. The big guys seemed fairly invisible from what I saw (Chara again excluded). Thomas was incredible and it was a shame that the year Halak gave us otherworldly goaltending on our run we had no depth….because goaltending plus depth equates to long runs IMO. Size may or may not even get you intot he playoffs and if so it runs into a ngithmarish matchup when it encounters speed and skill. I think it easier for a small skilled team to play against a bigger team than it is for a bigger team to play a faster more skilled team personally. Obviously all things being equal you take the size …but things aren’t normally equal and I really think the Bruions finally recognized this and plugged holes with speedy guys like Peverley and Kelly and a puck mover like Kaberle at the deadline. They were a really good team from top to bottom. I still think Lucic, Mcquaid, Thornton and to some extent Horton played far lesser roles than many of the smaller faster and skilled guys…that was my take anyway.

        • SmartDog says:

          I agree with you.
          Don’t forget how close we (and Tampa) came to bumping them off though. They weren’t really much better, but they did last longer and the depth as you point out was key. It would be great to see the habs make changes in their bottom 6 (as I’ve been hinting about with my 5 questions) and get rid of 2-dimensional guys like Pyatt and Moen. Ryan White has showed us how a depth forward can be a difference-maker and he’s neither big nor especially skilled but the guy has the heart of any two of our depth guys. More heart, more grit, SOME offensive skill. That’s what we need in our depth.

          • issie74 says:

            I was shocked at TB with 10 minutes to go, down 1 – 0, they don’t go for it.I don’t think even JM would do that.I am still shaking my head.


    • RobertAlanFord says:

      They had four lines of notable players, true, but its the get a goal and play four men back that really p’d me off. Thats not skill IMO.

      -When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro-

  49. J Haul says:

    Great news. Hopefully he comes back as strong as he seemed to be finishing last season.

    On another note, does the I/o iPhone app seem to be broken for anyone else? It never refreshes with new stories anymore.

  50. TomNickle says:

    Anyone think the Wild would swap first rounders with us if we threw Desharnais on the table?

  51. Mike says:

    I changed the number, These are more realistic.
    cammy-Pleks-X = 6+5= 11
    Patches-Gomez-Gionta = 1.7-7.35-5= 14.5
    Darche-Eller- AK = .7+1.25+3.25 = 5.2
    Moen-X- White = 1.5+1= 2.5
    X =
    Total = 32.7

    Markov-Yemelin =5.75+.95 = 6.7
    Gorges – Subban = 3.75 + .875 = 4.625
    Gill – Weber = 2.25 + 1= 3.25
    Spacek = 3.83
    Total = 18.405

    Price = 2.75
    X =
    Total = 2.75

    Total Spent so far 53.885
    Cap Ceiling = 64
    Space = 10.115
    Needs: top line winger, 4th line center, 13th offensive player. back up goalie

    • Mike says:

      I messed up my numbers before. but looking at it now. We are in great condition for cap space.

      • TomNickle says:

        Gorges at just under $4 million annually is quite a reach. Gauthier would be fleeced if he signed that deal.

        • Mike says:

          It is the max deal that he could possiblby sign in my opinion. Lets say he did sign that. We still have A LOT of cap space.

        • RobertAlanFord says:

          and where’s Desharnais in this? I guarantee you he’s on the team next year between Darche and Poulet.

          -When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro-

          • TomNickle says:

            Saying Pouliot will be on the team is a far fetched notion considering his last month with the team this season.

          • Mike says:

            He could be the 4th line center. I never said not. He is not signed yet so I did not include him. These are just MY estimations.

        • Tony McLean says:

          Yep small, soft, zero offence, put $$ towards Wiz. And no way Weber is worth a mill IMO he’s never even played a full season/been a regular. Glad to see Pyatt’s not in there but “Moan” is inferior even to the great Turner Stevenson. He’s not an NHLer. Bye!

          “Rebuilding since 1979.”

          • RobertAlanFord says:

            probably here for another year to live out his contract unless he’s moved and PG picks up two grinders July 1st. Weber is trade bait if Spacek doesnt move and Wiz is re-signed.

            -When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro-

    • ABHabsfan says:

      Where’s DD? I would add Brooks Laich and Pascal Dupuis if possible. Nittimaki ( i have no idea if that is how to spell it) would be a quality back-up. Might be wise to save a little cap space for a trade deadline deal in Feb

    • Mike D says:

      3.75mil is still too much for Gorges. 3mil is more realistic I think.

      – Honestly yours

      • RobertAlanFord says:

        2.5-2.75 for one year. Knees are serious setbacks for a GM considering a contract. HE gets Hal gill money at best and dont expect Markov to get more than 5.5.

        -When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro-

    • DearyLeary says:

      Love Josh to bits, but he won’t command 3.75, especially since he’s still an RFA.

      My guess is 2.5 for 3 or so.

    • GrimJim says:

      Okay, so let’s count up realistic scoring projections for that lineup:

      cammy-Pleks-X = 25+25+?= 50
      Patches-Gomez-Gionta = 20+10+30= 60
      Darche-Eller- AK = 10+10+20 = 40
      Moen-X- White = 5+?+5= 10
      Total = 160
      Markov-Yemelin =15+5 = 20
      Gorges – Subban = 0+15 = 15
      Gill – Weber = 2 + 8= 10
      Total = 45
      Total scoring 205+1st line rightwinger+4th line centre
      Assume 20 for the RW and 5 for the 4C
      Totals=160+45+25=230/82=2.80 goals per game
      Are we good with that?

      • Sean Bonjovi says:

        If Eller’s only going to score 10 goals we might as well trade him.

        * Ville Leino would make Sergei Samsonov look like Alex Kovalev *

  52. HalifaxHabs says:

    Awesome cap hit… talk about good value

    well done PG, now give us one more before they day is out.

  53. SmartDog says:

    1. IS PATCHES GOOD AS NEW? Do you think Patches will be the player he was or are we due for disappointment?
    2. THANK YOU HIGGINS. Was their a prettier site in the cup finals than Higgins turning big Z into little N crawling around the ice on all fours like the creepy monster he is?
    3. DOES TOUGH WIN? Now that Campbell’s son has won a cup and the old man himself has stepped down, will the league change? Or do we need some bigger nastier players to win 4 rounds of playoffs?
    4. GOMERANG. So Gomez says he’s going to come back and do better than last year. Will he? He has done the clever trick of setting the bar for himself VERY low. But even if he “rises” to be the 58 or 59 point guy he was the previous two years, is that enough?
    5. CAPTAIN WHO? When I look at Lidstrom re-upping for another year I think how strong a hockey administration Detroit has that they can groom such a leader from within to so effectively take over from the previous great leader they also groomed. Does our captain really measure up? It’s hard to know from outside, but are you impressed so far with Gionta’s leadership?

    • TomNickle says:

      1. Pacioretty was aching to get into some playoff action so I don’t think confidence will be an issue.

      2. Yes there was a prettier site. Hamhuis sending Lucic ass over tea kettle. Unfortunately it proved to be the Canucks undoing.

      3. Sure tough wins, but the Bruins aren’t tough. They’re cheap shot artists. And when you have a handful of referees who got their playoff assignment based on how well they treated the Bruins, well, you saw what happens.

      4. Gomez can’t be worse than last year.

      5. Gionta has been the chief leader among leaders in our dressing room for two seasons where we’ve lost some of the most important players we could possibly lose and this team has shown that it rises to challenges. If anything, he’s proven that he’s been one of our best captains in a long time because of it.

    • HardHabits says:

      1. I think MP will be better.
      2. There was nothing pretty about the Cup Finals this season.
      3. Yes
      4. Better to lower expectations and exceed them then to raise them and fail.
      5. I’d rather Gill be Captain.

    • RobertAlanFord says:

      1. I say Pacioretty will be back stronger than ever. I heard a radio interview about a month ago and he’s packing on muscle and speed training. He’s up to 230 approx. and getting faster…..YIKES!!!!

      2. Always liked Higgins. Hey, he can be our 3rd line guy!!!!

      3. It looks like the NHL endorses toughness seeing as that was the way the cup was one instead of speed and skill.

      4. With Pacioretty on his line he’ll get some points for sure.

      5. Gio will wear that C for at least another two years and I dont know anyone who would argue it.

      -When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro-

    • Tony McLean says:

      We haven’t had a decent captain since Damphousse. I like Gio but…

      “Rebuilding since 1979.”

  54. HardHabits says:

    Does anybody else find it interesting that two season’s ago the Habs had the Urologist and last season it was the Wiz?

    Habs like their PP specialists.

  55. TomNickle says:

    With Plekanec, Gomez and Eller on the roster Desharnais can’t be brought back next year to play a fourth line role can he?

  56. 24moreCups says:

    Off topic..
    Rest In Peace Ryan Dunn, you will be missed.

  57. TomNickle says:

    This is a good contract for Gauthier to have given Pacioretty. I am very concerned however that if the team was leading Jagr on or not interested in him, a big mistake is being made. At this point in time we need somebody to fill a top six role and allow Andrei Kostitsyn to play with Lars Eller. Jagr doesn’t cost assets, he isn’t demanding anything beyond one year and he addresses a need that we have in that he’s difficult to move off of the puck in high traffic areas.

    If there is no plan to address this need by way of trade the even strength scoring will continue to suffer next season. Surely Wisniewski and Markov won’t both be brought back and it’s reasonable to say that Wisniewski adequately replaced Markov’s offensive production. So where does the infusion of offense come from next season?

    A full season of Pacioretty helps if he’s back to his normal self, as does another year of development from Lars Eller. But I’m not counting on even strength scoring going up significantly with those two factors taken into consideration. Much like Gomez and Gionta need a player like Pacioretty to help maximize puck possession time in the offensive zone, Plekanec and Cammalleri need the same thing, and Andrei Kostitsyn isn’t consistent enough in that role.

    • BeeGee says:

      Good arguments here on why not to sign ol’68 http://www.cowhideandrubber.com/no-to-jagr-version-2-0

      • TomNickle says:

        Anybody who has watched a small degree of hockey over the last twenty years can make a strong argument for not signing Jagr. But he’s quite possibly the best offensive ufa available considering Brad Richards’ pricetag and concussion history.

    • RobertAlanFord says:

      Good post. Jagr named the Habs on his list and I doubt PG is feeling any pressure by it. I think its safe to say we wont see him in a habs jersey anytime soon. Besides, Weber is already #68 and I doubt Jagr would want anything else ;p.

      I think PG will sign a 3rd or 4th line guy and Pyatt gets a 2way. Someone to skate with White and Moen. Upshall perhaps?

      -When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro-

    • krob1000 says:

      Jagr would be a perfect fit, and if we also signed Wizniewski we would be looking pretty good IMO. It waould give us 2 great pp units, a body that cam play down low and actually be more creative than Cammi or Pleks, and buy time for Cammit o find space. No assets, one year, likely reasonable salary, mystique and legend of one of the best forwards tio ever play and big body. It is a no brainer to me.
      i have issues witht he fact we are looking at losing Wiz though….I understand the need to bring Markov back but Markov vs Wiz doesn;t really bolster the offense and Wiz added a reall welcome insanity factor fromt he D and would mean all three lines had a legit puck mover. We have two stay at home guys in Gorges and Gill and another on the way with Emelin. IF we could somehow manage to move Spatch or even Moen I think the numbers could work. Easier said than done I know but the infusion of Markov while maintaing the status quo with Wiz, the addition of Gorges and th, Pacioretty along with JAgr…..that is some very realistic improvement. Markov replacing Wiz is not that big of an improvement IMO and neither is Gorges over Hammer. I really, really hope we can find a way to get Jagr …. and Wiz. To me that would be enough to make us legit. I ‘d like them to look at signing Konopka as well for the reg season to handle the heavy lifting.

      I know the Jagr thing has people torn and he isn’t the Jagr of old….but Recchi did alright, Selanne did alright, Sakic was alright at nearly 40…I think AJgr is in that elite class and smart and big enough that he would still succeed and especially with savvy players like Cammi and Pleks…..absolute no brainer to me….but I am sure JM is losing sleep at the thought of it so it may not happen…although it should as should bringing back Wiz for his offfense and crazy streak. This team plays a solid enough team game and has the stay at home guys to skeep scores down along with PRice, but when we need that goal…Jagr and markov wold go a long way as will PAcioretty being back….pull the trigger PG…make these two things happen….Please!

  58. habs-hampton says:

    Great News!

    The price will look like a steal in 2 years!

  59. aemarchand11 says:

    Jagr wont be a hab. Does anybody think that Jacques Martin hasn’t already talked to Gauthier about him? He doesn’t fit into the speed based defensive system, therefore wont be signed.

    I personally think that a big winger would be good for a season to help our PP out, but realistically with the current situation I dont see it happening.

    “I have a different constitution. I have a different brain; I have a different heart; I got tiger blood, man.” – Charlie Sheen.

  60. Neutral says:

    Pacioretty proved to be the Habs second best left winger hope he can repeat.

  61. Timo says:

    Good. Now lets get rid off Gomez and Martin.

  62. RobertAlanFord says:

    He’s probably slated for the gomez-gio line which will help gomers numbers and make that cap hit of his a little less painful. Apparently Max’s off season training is packing on speed and muscle so this is the power forward we’ve been waiting for since John Leclair.

    -When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro-

  63. SeriousFan09 says:

    1.5 this year, 1.75 the next, very smart contract by Gauthier once again. Team is taking shape while they manage the cap.

    42.89 million in cap space spent, cap is between 63.5 and 64 million for the coming season, PG has better than 20 million remaining now to fill out three forward slots, three defencemen and resign Auld or replace him.

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
    SF09 on Twitter

  64. RGM says:

    Best news of the day!

    During the long summer, we all get to be pretend GM.

  65. Mike D says:

    GREAT news! Congrats Max, welcome back!

    Couldn’t be happier about this! 😀

    – Honestly yours

  66. HabFarmer says:

    Look at that man in his freshly washed and ironed sweater – stars in his eyes!

    He’s absotively super hero – like! Let’s hope he comes back with his Adamantium skeleton fully functional.

    “No, I see. The monkey’s out of the bottle now!”

  67. 3rdgenhabsfan says:

    PG is getting his ducks in a row. Don’t know the salary\years for MaxPac yet, but with 64 mil to play with, theres less doubt that PG will sign Markov AND Wiz. That’s right. If Wiz was anything, he was an excellent replacement for Markov. The two of them would be cruel to other teams on the PP. Speaking of the PP, Jagr for a year seams more and more like a good investment, as there are more than a few young players coming up through the system, and he’s demonstrated that he can play with Pleks. With the size the Habs are now, they are a PP team, and can use a 6’3 winger like Jagr, even if he is old. He probably has a 30 goal year left in him, and with Gionta and Gomez, they take a little stress off him to get those 3rd and 4th goals a game.
    Without Jagr there is really no one in the FA pool to fill a to 6 spot, let alone the hands of Jagr. I think he is over the hill, but still can pot the puck, and at this point, don’t we Habs fans want someone who can do that regularly? After all the signings there will still be more than enough cap left to sign the missing bottom six. Next year will be even easier with (hopefully) Gomez traded for a bag of pucks.

    • Greg says:

      yeah, but if we have money to spend, I’d rather take Wiz AND Markov for a few years than Jagr for 1.

      • Mike D says:

        We *might* be able to do all three!

        – Honestly yours

      • 3rdgenhabsfan says:

        Yeah me too, but this leaves me scratching my head for a top 6 to play with Pleks and Cammy. I’m confident that AK is going to be sharp this year, but Im not confident he is 82 game- top 6 material. At least JJ will put in 19 minutes of skating each game, and with 7-8 scoring chances a game with Pleks, he could produce. I don’t see Jagr signing for more than 3.5/ year in the NHL, but then again, Montreal did pick up the Gomez contract.

  68. TomNickle says:

    Plekanec, Gomez, Cammalleri, Gionta, Moen, Eller, Kostitsyn, Darche and now Pacioretty.

    Yemelin, Spacek, Subban and Gill also under contract.

    Nine forwards and four defensemen with approximately $21 million in cap room left to get three defensemen, three forwards and a backup goalie under contract.

  69. cboden says:

    As well, Max tweeted, and immediately took down a tweet that had “#25” at the end of it. May he be changing his number lower, indicating becoming a permanent fixture in MTL?

  70. DearyLeary says:

    Glad to have Patches back!

  71. Mike says:

    ok, since non of you are putting reasonable lines/ numbers ill put mine up. These are REALISTIC PPL!!

    cammy-Pleks-X = 6+5= 11
    Patches-Gomez-Gionta = 1.7-7.35-5= 14.5
    Darche-Eller- AK = .7+1.5+3.25 = 5.45
    Moen-X- White = 1.5+1= 2.5
    X =
    Total = 32.95

    Markov-Yemelin =5.75+.95 = 6.7
    Gorges – Subban = 3.75 + .875 = 4.625
    Gill – Weber = 2.25 + 1= 3.25
    Spacek = 3.83
    Total = 18.405

    Price = 2.75
    X =
    Total = 2.75

    Total Spent so far 54.105
    Cap Ceiling = 64
    Space = 9.895
    Needs: top line winger, 4th line center, 13th offensive player. back up goalie

    • Greg says:

      Seems to me that X=2 for the forwards. And what about Desharnais?

      • Mike says:

        I think he will end up being the 4th line center.. problem is, he does not rly fit that (prototype). But he never has his entire career so who knows.

    • RobertAlanFord says:

      That top winger is AK46. You forgot Desharnais. Wizniewski could be back now that the cap is way up meaning Weber is a part timer with Yemelin. Need 3rd or 4th line winger.

      -When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro-

    • Stef says:

      Mike, There’s no way Gorges is getting 4.25 mil.

    • 3rdgenhabsfan says:

      I like the bravery of putting together numbers for those lines. 4.25 for Gorges is too much. Maybe, and way out there, would be 3.25, which would be generous for an RFA out for most of his last contract season. I think they will try to bully him into a 15%-20% increase, on account of his injury. He is, after all, a shut-down defenseman, in a system that desires puck moving defensemen.
      The rest of your numbers are solid, so far.

    • Mike D says:

      I appreciate the effort you put in here. Couple thoughts:

      Eller’s salary is 1.27mil, not 1.5mil (not a big deal, I know)

      Gorges won’t get 4.25mil. 2.5 – 3mil is plenty, 3.5 at the VERY most. I love the guy, but no offensive upside and not enough size to be a physical or intimidating presence. Don’t get me wrong, he’s GREAT defensively and one of our core guys and leaders, but without those other attributes he’s not worth anything north of 3.5mil.

      – Honestly yours

    • Mike says:

      I changed the number a bit. What do you think?

  72. fire2nv says:

    awesome glad to hear

  73. nek25plus says:

    Great, glad to hear it…now what about Markov!?

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