Stop the press! Or stop the Internet!! Just stop something!!

When the biggest Canadiens news is Shawn Belle signing with Edmonton, we have officially begun the Dreaded Dog Days of summer.

One more sleep until the HIO mini-summit at the Manoir.

• Pat Hickey on Maxim Lapierre signing

Arpon Basu’s take

Jacques Demers on the mend

Pierre LeBrun updates UFAs

• TSN’s UFA tracker

• Another fun-filled season of Daniel Carcillo in Philadelphia

• Why the Bruins shouldn’t trade Marc Savard


  1. saskhabfan says:

    The team has regressed,why? Cause you said so? Wow,it must be true then,moron.

    Leafstv “telling their fans they deserve to win for over 40 years”

  2. TomNickle says:

    Stop giving me your ifs, maybes and excuses?

    You’ve said this team is worse than last season’s squad and they haven’t practiced together yet.

    Good analysis though. Really spot on and well thought out James.

    You’re wrong, I’m right. That’s your logic.

  3. Bill H says:

    Ali, you and Peter are a couple of socialists aren’t you?  LOL  I wouldn’t mind putting a salary cap on Wall St and Bay St also.  I am sure if the owners had their way, they would implement the maximum individual salary idea.  But as you noted Ali, its not likely to be popular with NHLPA.  I’m not sure why though.  If the overall cap stays the same, it means low end and medium salaries would earn more.  So the majority of players would benefit.

    I think the GMs will start to adjust to the salary cap era soon.  Its a bit of a learning curve on how to put together a championship team.  For a few years, the salary cap kept increasing substantially each year, so they could get away with signing these high end contracts.  Most of the biggest contracts seemed like bargains after a couple of years as the cap kept on rising, and players salaries with it.  But with the cap stagnating, its making it more difficult and teams are finding themselves handcuffed by the same big contracts they were getting away with a couple of years ago.  If the salary cap had gone up $5M in each of the last 2 years, the Gomez and Hamrlik contracts wouldn’t be the same problem for the Canadiens, would they?

  4. SeriousFan09 says:

    Tomas Plekanec, Scott Gomez and Brian Gionta are 1-dimensional players? Mike Cammalleri scores like he does and he can be as 1-dimensional as he likes. Ben Pouliot had some good defensive play when he first arrived in MTL as well, he recaptures that and the Canadiens have 4 two-way types in the Top 6 group.

    Who are these teams with these magical Bottom-6 units full of scoring forwards that will overwhelm ours also? Aside from Philidelphia maybe? CHI just saw their beloved depth disassmebled by cap issues. NJ doesn’t have it. PIT has 3rd-liners on their top lines most of the time. BOS maybe but aside from then and PHI, these wonderful Bottom-six unit that you believe will annihilate ours don’t exist. Eller, Lapierre, Boyd, Moen, Pyatt and any of the AHL players we can call up can match almost any unit around the league. It’s a good unit that is on par with most around the league.

    Last season, the team also faced catastrophic injury to nearly all of their top players so I fail to see how you can accurately predict how they’ll do based on an injury-plagued season.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  5. ManApart says:

    So our greatness will come out of Subban (who was there last playoffs), Eller (can’t expect much) and a few other AHLer’s. That’s the great changes from last year’s average team with a great goalie? We’re F$$ked. The bottom six is horrible. Don’t even try to think they compete against other teams. The top 6 is full of holes and is one-dimensional, just like last season (remember nothing has changed). Goaltending, huge question mark, that could very well be a liability.  This team is in a lot of trouble and management is not going to get away with it this time. If the year goes how I think it will, Boivin won’t be the only one walking next summer.

  6. SeriousFan09 says:

    If the team is only winning when the MVP goalie puts on all-star performance, it’s time to reorganize your team’s depth chart or you might run into something like an opponent that can exploit that, ECF anyone?

    The team has added a second puck-moving defencemen who can skate in Subban, something they’ve not had in years. We gave up SK for a guy willing to play in Boyd, we let two FA centres go in favour of younger, cheaper players and tapping the farm for it. MAB is not a loss when we have someone 10x better than him in Subban as well who can do more than just work on the PP. Eller has a far higher ceiling than either the 3rd or 4th line centres we’re giving up.

    The team from last year was missing their top defencemen and was out of gas out of playing a set of back-to-back series playing WSH and PIT, they met a team with more depth that ran over a goaltender who couldn’t put up enough strong performances to save them. They needed younger, cheaper talent for cap flexibility and to have a deeper group of forwards, which they’re working on. Acquiring Eller, better conditioning for Pouliot and sending AK’s troublesome brother away so he can focus on his game.

    Defensive depth was what Philly in the Cup Finals, getting Subban as a full-time player improves the defence, transition game and PP. That’s scoring that changes the course of games on a weekly basis. They had depth, Eller, Lapierre, Boyd, Pyatt, Moen and White/Palushaj or Pacioretty have a lot of youth and physical play, allowing the team to effectively roll 4 lines, giving top lines more rest as well. Halak wasn’t the key to this team getting better, forward depth and a superior defence unit is what matters right now.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  7. ManApart says:

    This team has not improved at all, but has regressed this summer. The issues and holes on this team has not been addressed. This team is definately worse than the one vs. Philly a few months ago. Don’t make me laugh, that Eller improved depth. We lost Moore, Metro, SK74 and MAB and gained Boyd, Eller. That does not improve depth. We traded Halak for Auld. The downgrading in the goalie position over last season is huge. Stop giving me your usual ifs, maybes and excuses. This team from last year got the snot kicked out of them vs. Philly. How do you think losing your MVP goalie, and your depth on the bottom 6 improved that situation? You throw in a few unproven so-so kids and don’t add to the top 6 at all and you think this team will improve on being shutout 3 times? I mean the situation is pretty simple to see. PG has been a complete failure this summer.

  8. PeterD says:

    Awesome!  Thanks for posting these.

  9. 21272andme says:

    thumbs up

  10. A. Berke says:

    I posted about a week or so ago the same idea of capping the players’ salaries too but I don’t think anybody noticed or cared to elaborate.

    My number was 6 mil per max, which, IMO is a very handsome amount to live comfortably. However with these crazy salaries escalating with every UFA signing, things are going out of hand for teams when they have to abide by the team salary cap.

    It is also easier said than done to say that the GM’s need to learn to spend with the cap in mind but the GM’s are also pressured to get good (or at least decent) players to make their teams more competitive. So, for the GM’s it’s damned if you do and damned if you don’t.

    Limiting the individual salaries with additional bonuses that may or not be included in the team cap figures (but the bonuses need to be somewhat limited too) appear to be a logical solution. Or bonuses could be determined according to the team earnings at the end of the season or some other way.

    Of course somebody needs to convince the NHLPA. But with the current situation, the teams, the league and the players are shooting themselves in the foot, to wit some of the UFA players now are sitting and waiting for contracts that are not coming their way nor feasible because of cap limitations. This will get worse and dumping salaries via trades will be history too since there won’t be any team with cap room.

    Ali B.

  11. SeriousFan09 says:

    The Team MVP is recuperating from an ACL injury for one thing and is still on the Canadiens roster. Sergei was a locker room issue that couldn’t handle playing in MTL or didn’t want to, either way, it was for the good of the team. Moore and Metro were let go for younger players, like Eller, Boyd, Pyatt and Lapierre who are cheaper as well. Those 4 young players are also Centres, are we supposed to have no  natural wingers at all in the bottom six? Lapierre had a team-high count in hits this year without playing hard in that many games, if he plays full-out all year that hit count will go up. Boyd has potential to rack up hits, Eller is credited for being a physical player as well and either White, Palushaj or Pacioretty the last forward to be called up are all considered physical forwards. Travis Moen as well is certainly no slouch.

    The depth has improved with the acquistion of Eller and the bottom six is younger, cheaper and more capable than to start last year. They’ve acquired P.K. Subban as a permanent defencemen to significantly boost the team’s ability to move the puck, which means a better transition game and more scoring.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  12. ManApart says:

    Do you even have to ask? The chances are very high, that the trend of the last 20 months or so continues. Why wouldn’t it?

  13. Storm Man says:

    You have your hour of computer time I see. How are thing going at the Saint-Jerome detention centre for you today?

  14. ManApart says:

    If Doug Wilson should go, why can’t PG and BG et al. disappear.

  15. andrewberkshire says:


  16. ManApart says:

    Lars Eller is probably the only good bet to play for the big club. Don’t tell me things are great because we picked up the Blues leftovers, who haven’t proven anything, after dumping team MVP, proven NHLer SK74, very good 3rd line center in Moore and 4th line center in Metro. the Habs have not addressed the top 6 problem to help their weak offensive ability , as well as it’s lack of physicality. This team will get hammered by the Flyers once again because dumbass PG and Co. didn’t feel the need to fix these problems. This team is downgraded big time in goal and has actually gotten worse in depth, which was already horrible. You tell me PG isn’t failing and you’re dreaming.

  17. habrez says:

    Posts like this are the reason I still read the comments

  18. andrewberkshire says:

    Halak’s save % dips but his GAA also goes down, he gets more wins and has a successful year, including making the playoffs.

    Price’s save % goes up, GAA goes down, gets more wins than Halak because Conklin will play more games than Auld, and people stop fretting about Halak so much.

  19. Storm Man says:

    It is called Kool-Aid oldtimer. 

  20. habrez says:

    Mason will beat out Pavelec

  21. andrewberkshire says:

    All I’ve been doing is blacklisting people!

  22. andrewberkshire says:

    I guarantee it. No way Montreal would let him walk for draft picks in a crap draft year when there’s no replacement.

  23. Mark C says:

    Even if Montreal did not match, the other G.M. just gave Price a well above market deal (in almost everyone’s opinion). Which makes the point that offer sheets are not efficient or effective as means of acquiring players. 

  24. andrewberkshire says:

    Coming back this year. You’re so funny…

  25. ed lopaz says:

    you “think” PK will be on the roster next year?


    what gives you that impression? 🙂

  26. joeybarrie says:

    And the Montreal Canadiens made the playoffs without the help of a guy by the name of PK Subban… I still think he will be on the roster next season…

    There may be other teams, but only ONE Club De Hockey…

  27. ed lopaz says:

    at 4 years and 15 million?

    I’m not sure about that.

  28. Bugs says:


    So what’s your call for this year then?

    Keepin it real, I be chillin as

    L.Bugs Potter, esq. Brotha to the Man with the Plan, Product-runnin Lead Houndogg with the Voodoo Flannel Posse, and Pimp Extraordinaire of Habsbros Mama Jones Snow Cones, muthafugga:

  29. Mark C says:

    Maybe not 99%, but offer sheets are not a great way of acquiring players. Since 2006, only one out of the six offer sheets given has not been matched. So the recent success rate is only slightly above 16% for the offer sheet giving G.M.. Should we even count the one time it worked? I think the Oilers might want a do over with Penner.  

    There is so much added risk and cost using an offer sheet. Unless the team is in cap hell, any semi-reasonable offer sheet is highly likely to be matched, meaning you lose out on acquiring the player you want, and piss off other G.M.’s.

    If a G.M. really wants a player they should try to trade for the player before strongly considering using an offer sheet. Your example highlights this, you run the risk of Montreal matching, meaning you lose out on the player you want. Or, you end up giving Price more money than his market value, plus you losing picks. 

    In the end, if it works it’s pretty much a trade, where you might not have given up as much in terms of assets as a trade, but you’ve undoubtedly overpaid in cap dollars with the added risk that the offer sheet likely won’t work.   


  30. andrewberkshire says:

    Ed, if an offer sheet was given to Price where the compensation was just a 1st and a 3rd, Montreal would match it and move salary.

  31. andrewberkshire says:

    Halak was actually pulled more often than Price last year.

  32. likehoy says:

    i mentioned this the moment we traded for eller and schultz…blues have done well drafting in the last 5 years so we hope we didn’t get the wrong prospects :P.

  33. ed lopaz says:

    so the players got scammed in the CBA, then, at least on this point.

    because it was supposed to create some movement amongst RFA’s.

    I think GM’s collude, and I think they protect each other like some kind of clique.

    I will also tell you – cuz I think you were away – that I think St Louis called Gauthier and told him that they were prepared to sign an offer sheet for Halak for around 15 million and 4 years.

    And I think they struck a side deal with Gauthier – on the condition that he close the deal prior to the draft.

    Gauthier was forced to make a move, and he concluded that he would NOT MATCH the 15 million from

    St Louis, and that he was better off with ELLER (a 1st) and Schultz (a 3rd) because both were further along

    than a 2010 draft pick would have been.

    Just a theory, of course.

    I asked HIO to look into it, but I think Boone is involved in the “collusion”.

    Ha! Ha!!.


  34. punkster says:

    GRENADE!!!! Hit the dirt everyone.


  35. likehoy says:

    take 11 minutes out of your day to relive Canadian Hockey Olympic Glory.!v=PuJH2WXJGHI&feature=related

    two party compilation of reactions all across Canada on Parise’s tying goal, and Sid’s winning goal.

  36. andrewberkshire says:

    With the departure of Kariya and Tkachuk, Eller was anything but expendable, Ed.

  37. TomNickle says:

    Any new recruits for our crew Andrew?

  38. g says:

    I agree-I always like the idea of performances bonuses. Earn your Money!

    “Long before I ever wore the jersey, I wore the jersey.” Dryden

  39. Bugs says:

    Put me down for:

    Wins: Halak

    SV%: Halak

    GAA: Halak

    Shutouts: Halak

    Assists: Halak

    Number of free dinners offered by locals: Halak

    Number of times compared to God in the press: Halak

    Games played: Price

    Number of times pulled: Price

    Number of times booed off the ice: Price

    These are but preliminary projections, mind.

    Keepin it real, I be chillin as

    L.Bugs Potter, esq. Brotha to the Man with the Plan, Product-runnin Lead Houndogg with the Voodoo Flannel Posse, and Pimp Extraordinaire of Habsbros Mama Jones Snow Cones, muthafugga:

  40. TomNickle says:

    The offer sheet is a desperate man’s tool.

    Doug Wilson has been rumoured to be on his way out of San Jose for two years now because of his inability to acquire the necessary piece or pieces to put his team over the top.

    Kevin Lowe was a man on borrowed time and there wasn’t a fan, journalist, executive or player that didn’t think he should’ve been fired two years before it happened.

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