The Cup is ours!

ZSC Lions Zurich v Espoo Blues - IIHF Champions Hockey League

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The Canadiens have signed Finnish centre Joonas Nattinen, their third-round pick in the 2009 draft.

The team announcement:

Montreal Canadiens general manager Pierre Gauthier announced today the signing of centreman Joonas Nattinen to a three-year, two-way contract. As per club policy, financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
“We are very pleased to have reached an agreement with Joonas Nattinen. Joonas is a promising young player with size and skills. Despite his young age, he proved to be a very good player in a competitive professional league in Finland for the past two seasons, and also was a key member of the Finnish national team at the World Juniors last year,” said Canadiens general manager Pierre Gauthier.
Nattinen registered two assists and served 12 penalty minutes in 21 games with Espoo and Hämeenlinna of the SM-Liiga (Finland) in 2010-11. Nattinen, 20, added two assists in four games with Espoo (Junior A SM- Liiga) and Suomi (Finland2).
In three seasons with Espoo and Hämeenlinna in the SM-Liiga, the 6’2’’, 186 lbs defenseman totalled 5 assists with 20 penalty minutes in 58 games. Nattinen recorded 55 points (16 goals, 39 assists) in 51 career games in the Junior A SM-Liiga.
Nattinen was part of the Finnish team at the last three World Junior Championships (Ottawa – 2009, Saskatchewan – 2010 and Buffalo – 2011). He registered 10 points (4 goals, 6 assists) in 18 contests, including three goals in six games at the 2011 Championship.
A native of Jamsa, Finland, Nattinen was the Canadiens’ second pick (third round, 65th overall) at the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.

Hockeysfuture.com assessment:

Nattinen is very good at analyzing the game – whether spotting teammates to create offense in the attacking zone or supporting defenders either in transition or in the defensive end. He has the size and willingness to win loose pucks either along the boards or in mid-ice. Not a natural scorer or shooter, he possesses a decent enough wrist shot that is accurate and quick. He plays with a lot of spirit and competitiveness and is very unselfish – often looking to create plays rather than shoot the puck. He is a disciplined player who does not take many penalties, though he could utilize his size to play more physically at times. Confident, for a young player (appeared in 19 SM-Liiga games as an 18-year-old and did not look out of place), he has the potential to be a special player as he grows and improves his strength.

251 Comments

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  2. bostonantifan says:

    “Not a natural scorer or shooter”. Of course he’s not a “natural scorer or shooter”. When the hell have the Canadiens EVER signed a “natural scorer or shooter” since Mats Naslund in the 80′s? Gee, I hope he’s as “special” a player as Lars Eller is. Maybe they can score 10 goals between them someday.

  3. boing007 says:

    Richard R
    Lux. Shed Café. Business. Lola’s Paradise. Balmoral.
    Yes sir. By the time I got home from an after hours coffee at Lux the birds were singing in the trees.

  4. _Habsoloutly_ says:

    Wel, looks like Julien the hut isn’t gonna get fined by the NHL for calling out the refs in his post game new conference. Must be nice to play for the Boston Bruins. I would expect Boston to start getting more UFA’s wanting to play there. Who wouldn’t want to play on a team where you get away with murder?

  5. Mr. Biter says:

    Haven’t watched hockey since the last game vs. the Broons and been to busy to post but have been reading about our signings before free agency starts. My humble views:
    A) Still need an “Enforcer” for the regular season (and re-sign White)
    B) Go with Wiz vs. Markov. Wiz is stronger, tougher(see above if no one is signed) has a better shot and has not ended the last 2 seasons on the IR. as AM has. I like AM but do not think he will be able to come back anywhere near to the level of play he had 2 years ago before his injuries and is one hit or accidental trip away from forced retirement.
    c) Keep Halpren. Posters complained all year about our lack of face off win%’s. He probably will come fairly cheap and it’s a lot easier playing with the puck than chasing after it. BTW I wanted to keep Moore as i think he was and is a valuable player.
    D) Gone, BP, Picard, Sopel, Mara, Hammer ( hate to put him here but $5.5 is way to high) and trade Jaro, Moen, AK (another tough one He’s either good or terrible no middle ground) to high at $3.25 Mil.
    This sheds $$$’s and age to sign either an enforcer at $9000,000 or less and a hard hitting BIG D-Man ( then Wiz’s situtation may change but we need one or the other) and a big tough forward.

    Mr. Biter

    • jljudges54 says:

      @ Mr. Biter- Doesn’t Subban and Carey Price’s contracts run out next year? If so and if NHL 11 can be an indicator (not say it is) then we need some money come re signing period to keep both of them. As Carey Price showed a lot of rebound from the last 2 years, and Subban well the improvement he made this year in the pro’s I think speaks for it’s self.

      CH 1909

      • Mr. Biter says:

        Agree with you. I would like to sign them both this year to long term contracts even though I don’t think they would. In hindsight 3 or 4 years last year for Price would have been nice , but the site would have been down for at least a week with Halak fans.

        Mr. Biter

    • olematelot says:

      Wiz over Markov isn’t going to happen. You allude to Markovs’ injuries and doubt if he can regain his form, are you aware the Wiz has had 3 major knee reconstructions and seems just fine. AK will also be back.

      • Mr. Biter says:

        wiz and Markov play totally different styles of hockey and many commented last year that AM had slowed down after the first injury so how much will the second affect him. Also if no “Enforcer” is signed Wiz can at least throw-em AM can’t and we get even smaller. Just our luck it’s AM’s UFA year. Another sign AM might not be resigned in the last 4 years if a player went into UFA with a year ending injury we have not signed him (Souray, Komo, Schneider, Lang Tanquay) to long or large contracts either droping them or not matching offers.

        Mr. Biter

  6. Mike D says:

    test

    - Honestly yours

  7. HabFanSince72 says:

    LA Loyalist -

    If you used to hang out in the Mile End you must remember Lux (closed a while ago) – the café – newsstand – candy store. Great place for a 3am snack.

    Gimme a shout if you’re ever in town and I’ll show you around the hood. Lots of great restaurants in Mile End now.

    Whiskey Café is still going strong.

    • Say Ash says:

      I think I went to the Lux as a kid in the mid 80s. Was it on St. Laurent, with lots of green metal, great staircases, kind of an atrium, big white lettering outside? At the time I thought it was one of the weirdest restaurants I had ever seen. Sorry, that’s all I can recall.

    • HardHabits says:

      Shed Cafe. Business. Lola’s Paradise. Balmoral.

  8. TheThinker says:

    Not a Boston fan but I have to be Honest. I think TB will be toast tomorrow night.

    • JohnBellyful says:

      I hope so, too. The toast of Tampa — and Hockey Inside/Out.

    • habstrinifan says:

      Disagree! I think Bruins will start game bytaking early penalties and they will pay for it. Not only do I think Tampa will win this series, I am sticking to my prediction that Tampa will win the cup. In fact I think either Tampa or Boston WILL beat Vancouver in 5 games.

      • TheThinker says:

        By the way I’m a Habs fan. The habs gave Boston all they could handle. one more lucky break, Boston would not be playing right now that’s why Boston is playing tough hockey. other teams have a hard time against them when they play that style and it will win them a cup.

  9. _Habsoloutly_ says:

    Looks like a Boston bruin is gonna escape suspension again. Torterella does it in the playoffs and it’s a one game suspension. A Bruin does it and nothing? This is getting a little ridiculous.

    http://aol.sportingnews.com/nhl/story/2011-05-26/agent-bruins-nathan-horton-doesnt-expect-suspension-for-water-bottle-incident

  10. TheThinker says:

    yan: why would you want to bring another 3rd liner to the team. at this point in his career he’s a 3rd liner.

  11. punkster says:

    Shades of ’64. A Dusty Springfield summer on HI/O.
    Wishin’ and hopin’ and thinkin’ and prayin’,
    Plannin’ and dreamin’…
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3b9zbLkcRbQ

    ***Subbang Baby!!!***

    • JohnBellyful says:

      Definition of purgatory: being without a home computer for almost a week (and the neighbour deciding to work the day shift … and locking his door, can you believe it!). Anyways, I bit the bullet and got the PC repaired, with a considerable loss of data (and with it ‘The Best of Bellyful, Vol. 1′). So you can imagine how depressed I’m feeling right now. Until Punkster — thanks indeedy — provided the link to the Dusty Springfield tune, one of my favourites (side note: clip showed one of her albums, titled ‘White Heat’, one of Cagney’s best gangster movies).
      Ah, the summer of ’64. Popsicles and sunburn. Home run derbies and paper routes. Swimming holes and bloodsuckers. And a year closer to the Habs ending the Maple Leafs’ reign of horror. We shall never see the like again. (You ever notice they don’t make 1964 Pontiacs like they used to).
      Uh oh, there’s smoke coming out of the computer. I wondered about this shop. Is there such a thing as a fatherboard?

      – “A little song, a little dance, a little seltzer down your pants.” –

      • Bugs says:

        Feel your pain. Lost Vol 1 AND 2. Have yet to collect enough new data for it to be worthwhile to backup on disc.
        Totally changed my outlook on life actually.
        Thinkin ’bout askin my mom if I can move outta the basement, you know? But…aw, I dunno.

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

    • HabFab says:

      One of my favorite things about HIO…the musical memories. Hit your link to Dusty, listened to my theme song “Son of a preacher man”. Spotted a link to Eric Burdon & the Animals…45 minutes later and I’m back. Fantastic trip down memory lane,thanks!

  12. habs001 says:

    the top teams in the nhl have fast physical d who can pinch and keep the puck in the other teams zone and are agile and athletic..boston d dominated us in this aspect of the game…it is still amazing that a team that had 5d like hammer, spacek.gill,mara and sopel all on the same team came so close to beating boston despite the fact these 5 have very limited pinching abilities that help out our forwards…

  13. shuttle-lemaire-lafleur says:

    Not a big fan of the Molson’s so far, they haven’t earned my respect at this stage in their ownership. We’ll see how serious they are about bringing a championship to Montreal in the next couple of years. Thus far, I am disappointed the way they operate…time will tell…follow the money and you will find the truth, that’s just the way it is. If the Molson boys are serious about winning,I just might get my wallet out and go to a game. I would like to bring my son’s with me if the damn ticket prices weren’t so damn much money. I find it very difficult to support millionaires on my salary…sorry Geoff, I would if I could but I can’t. My family comes first, I cannot eat your tickets and stay alive at the same time…enjoy your summer sir…

  14. Jan_pronounced_Yan says:

    So, the rumour mill says Nikita Filatov could be had for a 3rd round pick or something of equivalent value.

    Should the Habs explore such a trade?

    I know Filatov certainly doesn’t appear to be a JM type of player, but the offensive potential is definitely there. What if he played 3rd line with Eller and AK46? Keep in mind, his cap hit is over $2 million with bonuses until the end of next season.

    I also wonder what a Filatov-Avtsin combo could do down the road.

  15. Toe Blake says:

    Ah….if he only turns out to be a quarter of the player Juha Lind was!

  16. arcosenate says:

    what’s going on with the team’s communications department, first they spell yemelin wrong and now they refer to this guy as a defenceman?

    • Bugs says:

      Well, for what it’s worth, for me, the first one is “Yemmy” and the second one is “the guy with the face and the pants” and that’s all there is to it; I don’t care how anyone designates either.

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

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      Ever since Molson took over their press releases have been garbage. We never would have seen something like this when Gillett owned the team ;)

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

  17. chinahab says:

    I don’t like the sarcastic headline. Hahah, he’s not a star. Or at least that’s what the haha-headline writer is thinking. But who knows? And anyway, imagine you’re the player and you see yourself being made fun of in the local media the moment you sign with the club. Whatever happened to newspapers that strived to be a bit more objective?

    • Bugs says:

      Is that why Daigle never made it? Cuz no one in the media poked fun at fun at’m afore signin?
      Huh…

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

    • punkster says:

      It’s called a sense of humour and it’s something this kid better have if he ever wants to wear the colours and ply his trade in this crazy hockey mecca :)

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

  18. LA Loyalist says:

    Interesting article by Damien Cox in The Star on the proportionality of crime and punishment and how the lack thereof only encourages the crimes. Worth your time if the subject interests you.

    http://thestar.blogs.com/thespin/

  19. HabFanSince72 says:

    Flyers have cap issues and they are apparently shopping Jeff Carter. They would want prospects or draft picks in return.

    What can/should we offer?

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      Would you trade Eller straight up for Jeff Carter? Would the Flyers?

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

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        Yes. I think Carter is much better than Eller will ever be.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        Would Philly trade Jeff Carter to US straight up? That’s the other slice of the sandwich.

      • 24 Cups says:

        You’ve got to be kidding, it’s going to take a hell of a lot more than Eller to bag Carter.

        • Sean Bonjovi says:

          Would they have taken Halak?

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

          • Duracell3 says:

            Yes. Probably something else too, but they want a goalie, especially if Bob doesn’t work out, as leighton is a complete joke. Carter’s contract is insane long though, I doubt we have anything to really be in talks with them if they are trying to dump caps, the only good players we have either have near equal cap hits, or are on entry level type contracts and need to stay. They would laugh and hang up the phone if you offered them eller straight up.

          • issie74 says:

            That same question was put to Bobby Clark when he was on the TSN panel during last years playoff and his answer was … No!

        • Sean Bonjovi says:

          double post

    • DearyLeary says:

      Tough call, have we heard about Carter’s injury issues? He definitely had a down season, and if those injuries can’t be dealt with completely, it’s hard to expect him to improve.

  20. Sharks9 says:

    4 NHL.com experts have done their mock drafts and the 4 different guys they had us picking were:
    Boone Jenner, Phillip Danault, Zack Phillips or Nicklas Jensen

    25 before 14

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Boone Jenner sounds like the name of a child actor on a sitcom who goes on to have drug and alcohol problems in his or her twenties, but then gets their act together for an unexpected mid-career comeback.

      Zack Philips sounds like a baseball player. A pitcher. Or maybe a shortstop.

      The other two could be hockey players.

      • Bugs says:

        Disagree.
        Sounds like a harmonica-playin country poke what had a measure of success in the 40s on the Nashville-Knoxville circuit, then carefully placed his earnings in a tractor dealership when he foresaw his irrelevancy approaching before the end of the 60s, and retired a millionaire in New Providence circa 1973.
        Died with a smile on his face and a hooker on his hoo-ha, Vang Vieng, Laos, 1982.
        THAT’S what Boone Jenner sounds like.
        C’mon, Sincey! Gonna do this thing, do it right, would you?

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

  21. HardHabits says:

    For the draft, I like Zack Phillips or Boone Jenner. IMO those kids are in the Getzlaf-Carter-Richards mould.

    • DearyLeary says:

      Zack Phillips has been really fun to watch at the Mem Cup.

      • Sean Bonjovi says:

        He is slick. I just think he can play better.

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

        • DearyLeary says:

          Oh, I agree, but I’ve seen great flashes in what I believe to be an elite level tournament in the Memorial Cup.

          You have to be able to show a degree of dominance at every level you play in to be considered for a first round selection, and Phillips has done that (in my estimation).

          I put a lot of weight on winning at elite levels of competition, and Phillips, whether he’s a big producer or not in the tourney, has made an impact. I would love to see him in the system (the Canadiens’ system, not necessarily JM’s system).

          Decent size, good skills, and he happens to fill a need for our team. Of the 4 projected drafts I like Phillips the most.

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      <——– That's Zach Phillips right there! Phillips hasn't had a great Memorial Cup so far. He came in hurt, but it looks to me like he's playing nervous more than injured. I'm still a huge fan though.

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

  22. Sean Bonjovi says:

    In 2009-2010 Tom Pyatt played 41 games for the Hamilton Bulldogs and scored 13G + 22A = 35Pts. Without using the words Guy, or Boucher can anyone explain how this happened?

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

  23. HardHabits says:

    In an NHL team’s roster, for forwards and defensemen, 5’11″ should be a type of demarcation line. Having anywhere between 2-4 are acceptable but these players should either be elite or weigh approximately 200 lbs, and preferably are both.

    A team can survive with one player that is 5’7″ to 5’9 as well but one is the outside limit and that takes away one player, possibly two if this player isn’t certified elite, from the 5’11″ group.

    The rest of the team should be 6’0″ or taller and 200 lbs. or heavier.

    When an NHL team, as is the case with the Habs, assembles too many players whose stature is at or falls below this demarcation line on its roster, it not only becomes a victim of the occasional goonery but it tends to also be a factor in the wearing down of the team and players over the course of the season, because of the physical play, the checking, the mucking for pucks and the hitting that are all part of NHL hockey.

    This in turn has the team at a disadvantage for the play-offs.

    EDIT: Slight modification. 6’0″ or taller and/or approximately 200 lbs. or heavier.

    • Sharks9 says:

      By any chance do you know how many team fit your idea of a roster? I’m curious to know if many do.

      25 before 14

      • GrimJim says:

        I’m not going to check all 30 teams but Bos has 5 players under 190lbs, 3 under 5’11″ (1 under 5’9″) and 2 more at 5’11″. Pitt has 4 under 190, 2 under 5-11 (1), and 6 at 5-11. Phil has 8 under 190, 4 under 5-11 (0 under 5-9) and 6 at 5-11. TB has 3 under 190, 2 under 5-11 (2), and 3@5-11. Mont has 4 under 190, 3 under 5-11 (3) and 6@5-11.

        • GrimJim says:

          Stats from team rosters on their websites

        • HardHabits says:

          Very disingenuous of you GJ. Check the players who are actually playing in the play-offs not the whole roster.

          Here is Boston’s play-off roster and you’ll see that they fit the bill:

          DEFENSE:
          Dennis Seidenberg 6′ 1″ 210
          Tomas Kaberle 6′ 1″ 214
          Johnny Boychuk 6′ 2″ 225
          Andrew Ference 5′ 11″ 189
          Zdeno Chara 6′ 9″ 255
          Adam McQuaid 6′ 4″ 197
          Shane Hnidy 6′ 2″ 204

          Only Ference falls outside this category and they have Chara who more than compensates. That is not a small defense corps to say the least.

          OFFENSE:
          David Krejci 6′ 0″ 177
          Nathan Horton 6′ 2″ 229
          Patrice Bergeron 6′ 2″ 194
          Brad Marchand 5′ 9″ 183
          Michael Ryder 6′ 0″ 186
          Chris Kelly 6′ 0″ 198
          Milan Lucic 6′ 4″ 220
          Rich Peverley 6′ 0″ 195
          Mark Recchi 5′ 10″ 191
          Tyler Seguin 6′ 1″ 182
          Daniel Paille 6′ 0″ 200
          Gregory Campbell 6′ 0″ 197
          Shawn Thornton 6′ 2″ 217

          2 players under 5’11″, 1 at 5’11″, the rest 6’0″ and taller. 195 lbs. is approximately 200 lbs. Marchand is like Kenny Linseman version 2.0 and he scores. Ryder is shy of 190 but not by much, close enough not soft. Dr. Recchi is a bull and an old war horse. Seguin is a #2 pick and a young elite forward scoring talent. There are 3 players who are shy of 200 but they are all 6’0″.

          The Canucks and Lightning also fit the bill.

    • punkster says:

      Maybe they should be white and Protestant or Catholic too. And not have university degrees. And come from only middle class families. I mean if you’re going to set physical limits why stop there.

      Please, I understand this is simply your size and grit spiel from another angle but come on. There’s plenty of room for small, fast, talented players in all sports and on all teams.

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

      • LA Loyalist says:

        How about small and soft, like us?

        Should we discriminate against softies? Is that fair?

        Sport is a meritocracy, as it should be. We’ve had big softies (Latendresse) and small expensive softies (Gomez) and on the other hand we have small players in the pantheon of the gods – Pocket Rocket and Mats Naslund, our last 100 pt man was what? 20 years ago now or more?

        The point is we need to be physically harder to play against and mentally tougher and more consistent. My biggest grievance from last year is Habs going into dumps like Atlanta or Cleveland or Toronto and mailing it in. I don’t care what size you are, that was unacceptable.

        That involves changing some of our parts, which leads to debate, as it should.

        It’s a long summer. Use your bullets judiciously.

        • SeriousFan09 says:

          Scoring was a little different in 1986 as well Loyalist. I don’t see anyone ripping off 200 points these days, or even 150.

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

          • LA Loyalist says:

            You are right, I was just thinking Habs. Maybe Martin St. Louis as a contemporaneous example is better so we talk apples and apples.

            Actually I was thinking this but my post was getting too long – that overall the players are bigger and the equipment better – and the rules different.

            While I’m on the size and grit bandwagon to a large degree, my greater concern is between the ears. Did you post any thoughts on the new Finn? Nattinen? Sorry if I missed it.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            I know Habs need to get bigger but as I so often address, that issue has been addressed via trades and the draft in the last two seasons with an emphasis on guys with character. (not a coincidence a number of our latest acquisitions wear letters with their junior squads).

            Nattinen projects as a two-way centre with an expertise in the faceoff circle, I doubt he goes beyond 3rd-line if he rounds out as a pro but a young faceoff expert who can chip in the odd goal is a good asset.

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

        • punkster says:

          Like your Moore response below, a guy with an extra gear who wanted to play here, would he fit into HH’s restrictions? At 6 foot but only 190 lbs he would be borderline, I mean if 5’11″ and 200 lbs is the limit how does Moore fit? Or Halpern at 6 foot and 195 lbs? Point being setting a size criteria is dangerous ground. I suspect most here would want a team of Richard’s and Naslund’s rather than a team of Lucic’s and Chara’s. Does size and toughness automatically translate into good hockey? Are you drawn by 22 Richard’s or 22 Chara’s?

          ***Subbang Baby!!!***

          • LA Loyalist says:

            I want 22 guys who bleed bleu, blanc, rouge and leave it all on the ice on a regular basis.

            I’d like 22 of Saku, Skrudland, Carbo, Big Bird, PK, Muller, Rick Green, Gainey, Roy, Markov, Patches — heart and guts. That’s what I want and I’m concerned we don’t have enough of it.

            Size? Let the ladies worry about that? :)

          • issie74 says:

            Alain Berger born Dec 2000 Bern Swi.Oshawa Generals 2009 draft LW shoots right 6″4 208pds. 29g 23a,will join the Bulldogs this fall along with his fellow countryman Diaz,who signed last week.

          • issie74 says:

            I’ll take 22 Richard’s any day.Know where to find them?

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            In a corner crying that 22 Subbans are not being nice to them.

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

    • Duracell3 says:

      I think I’d take Bouillon over Spacek.

  24. HabFanSince72 says:

    Summer’s almost here. I’m going out tonight to have probably the best steak in town (OK, Moishe’s is 1st but 2nd best) at
    L’Assommoir (on Bernard – not in Old Montreal). Bavette with grilled vegetables and mashed potatoes. Only $22. I order it Philly Charred (burned on the outside, bloody on the inside).

    Anyway I was feeling pretty good until I realized … the Bruins might still win the Stanley Cup.

    As long as that remains a clear possibility (I’m rating it at about 24% right now) joy is not possible. Come on Tampa I want my life back.

    • LA Loyalist says:

      Please report on your dinner tomorrow. I lived at St. Laurent and Bernard in the 1980′s which was just the beginning of that area getting a life.

      I’m sure it’s fancy now. I used to go to a place call Whiskey Bar which had an expensive fountain which people mistakenly took for the urinal :( I also ate every Sunday at L’Express and often got St. Viateur bagels after the bars. You’re making me very nostalgic.

    • JD_ says:

      Never heard of Philly Charred.

      Chicago-Style Rare and even Pittsburgh Rare – both charred on the outside, blood red on the inside – but not your variation.

      Chicago and Pittsburgh’s style works; Philly’s was discredited decades ago and should continue be reserved for greasy diner fare.

      Have a good steak!

  25. Bugs says:

    Nattinen, is that the guy with the face?
    Who wears those pants?
    Is that him?
    Yeah, I like him.

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

  26. HardHabits says:

    Interesting that there’d be a comparison between Moore and Halpern on this thread.

    IMO Moore last season was better in the play-offs, than Halpern this, albeit Halpern was injured to finish the season, didn’t play until mid-series and was probably not 100%, nevertheless.

    I am hoping moving forward the Habs have better, younger, and more cost effective options with players like Engqvist and Nattinen, and even though they are not scoring power houses they are nevertheless players that possess the potential, through the Habs development program, to become credible 3rd and 4th liners, ones that can play a solid and effective two-way game and of course chip some in.

    It frees up room for the top lines.

    A team that spreads its scoring through out the line-up is better than a team that focuses one 2-3 super scorers, although having scoring spread through-out the line up with a few snipers is the best.

    I know it might sound like idealism, but I hope the Habs can achieve that, all the while maintaining their defensive and speciality teams proficiency intact.

    • TomNickle says:

      Halpern was signed to fill the role that was vacated when Moore wasn’t extended in Montreal, so it is certainly relevant. The player and the role are easily replaceable. This coming off-season Halpern could be easily replaced with one of Handzus, White, Madden, Reasoner, Fiddler, Nichol, Smithson or Niedermeyer.

    • gK_HabsFan says:

      Moore:

      2011 Season: 77 Games Played, 18 Goals, 14 Assists, 32 Points, +/- ( -12)…

      2010 Playoffs (with Habs): 19 Games Played, 4 Goals, 1 Assists, 5 Points, +/- (1)

      Halpern:

      2011 Season: 72 Games Played, 11 Goals, 15 Assists, 26 Points, +/- (6).

      2011 Playoffs: 4 Games Played, 1 Goals, 0 Assists, 1 Points, +/- (-1)…

      Based on these numbers… these players are IDENTICAL!!
      You consistently make it seem like Moore is on a different planet then Halpern. Wake up! The guy is having an unbelievable playoffs! This doesn’t mean squat!

      -GK-

      • Duracell3 says:

        Moore scored big goals at the right time last year (and a bit this year as well), which makes an argument for either (or both): 1) He is clutch 2) Those big goals and intensity from bottom 6 guys over-magnify a bit how good they are in the regular season, leading to his assessment.

        Personally, Moore seems faster and/or more intense to me, but it isn’t a big difference. I’d take Metro over both. I’d argue Eller fills a different role.

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      Lars Eller replaced Dominique Moore.
      Jeff Halpern replaced Glen Metropolit.

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

    • punkster says:

      While I agree with the view that Moore/Halpern equals potato/potato and that there are likely dozens who could fill the same role for equal or less money I still liked Moore’s style. Lots of “oompf”. But then I’m deluded ;) and that goes along with my hairline which is denuded.

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

      • HardHabits says:

        Funny how everybody focuses on the Moore/Halpern comparison and nobody cares to elaborate on the rest of the comment.

        If we can’t raise the level of humour here let’s at least up the ante for the debate.

        Yes, dem’s debatin’ words!!

      • LA Loyalist says:

        A guy that has an extra gear for the playoffs as Moore obviously does is a guy you want.

        No reflection on Halpern he’s had a decent career and I respect what he did for us at the end of his career.

        Moore wanted to stay here, too.

  27. HabFanSince72 says:

    Vinny Lecavalier is 2nd in scoring (1 point behind Henrik Sedin). I’d say reports of his over-ratedness are over-rated.

    I was among those who would have liked to see him move to the Habs (although obviously not if it meant Subban and Plekanec going the other way) when this was proposed a couple of years ago.

    • TomNickle says:

      He hasn’t been average, but he hasn’t excelled either. Sedin basically took a series off, Lecavalier came close to that too. He’s a great player when healthy, but with that contract, the Lightning can have him.

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      It’s the first time in three years he’s playing up to his billing again. Whether he maintains that is a whole other story and don’t forget, he has one of the biggest contracts in the NHL that rules until our own PK Subban is in his 30s.

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

      • Kooch7800 says:

        Wouldn’t it be great if next year you could say that exact statement about Scott Gomez.

        Vinny is good but his contract is insane and is worse than Gomez as it is a lot longer. I think they will be looking to unload Vinny but they won’t find to many takers with that kind of dough.

      • ooder says:

        the thing is, if during that time he is able to win 1 or 2 cups would that not be a succesful career? also, if he chooses to retire he will be off the books.
        with gomez playing the way he is we can forget about winning the cup until his contract runs out.
        you cannot win with 7 million tied up in a useless player like him.
        unless a miracle happens
        ——————
        Gomez: 36 and counting!

        • TomNickle says:

          The Lightning had one of the lowest payroll’s in the league this year. They had more than $15 million in cap space prior to the trade deadline. $7 million dollars didn’t hold them back. Funny you would say that and not point to the $5 million Simon Gagne was making as a completely useless player for them this season.

          • ooder says:

            yes but Gagne is of the books next year. Also, the lightning have had great support coming from guys like bergenheim, purcell, moore and cheap scoring in Stamkos.
            btw i am not advocating brinigng Lecavalier here or anything, I am just stating that for someone who is being paid a lot of money he is producing when it counts most… unlike Gomez
            ——————
            Gomez: 36 and counting!

          • TomNickle says:

            Well I can tell you that Gomez won’t be on the books here after this coming season, if that long. With Subban, Price and Eller in line for extensions, possibly Yemelin and Pacioretty in addition, Gomez will be gone, there’s no way around it. Gomez had a bad season, but Lecavalier is coming off of a terrible season himself, yet nobody talks about it.

          • Kooch7800 says:

            I Like gagne. He had an injury riddled season and I think that is why his production was so bad. In the playoffs he has 12 points in 14 games with a plus 7. I wouldn’t mind him in our top 6 if you could get him for 3.5 or 4 mill a season

          • ooder says:

            the reason people don’t talk about it is because of the success of the lightnin in general.
            also in the playoffs Vinny has stepped up… no way do i think he is worth his contract, but when it counts he is producing

            ——————
            Gomez: 36 and counting!

          • TomNickle says:

            Re: Gomez & Lecavalier

            Funny Gomez seemed to step up last season when it mattered and the Lightning were in the bottom 5 of the NHL. I didn’t see much Gomez praise and Lecavalier bashing going on. It’s the markets that separate the comparisons. Hab fans will go crazy over a high priced underachiever and Lightning fans brush it off of their shoulders.

          • HabFanSince72 says:

            I don’t think you can compare Lecavalier to Gomez. The two contracts are bad in different ways. Vinny is probably worth his 7.7M cap hit right now, but the length of the contract is a problem.

            Gomez is like your mother in law moving in with you. Or having a cat that vomits everywhere but your kids won’t let you get rid of it. Or like being Poland in the 20th century and your neighbors are Germany and Russia.

          • issie74 says:

            Everyone seems to not consider the fact that Gomez is tradable at the deadline for some team needing a 2nd line centre,he is half price with a cap hit of 5.5 next year and 4.5 the following year,and that is affordable for a veteran center.

        • LA Loyalist says:

          Remember guys that it’s not entirely apples and apples — American expansion teams need name players to promote the game and sell tickets, the way Gretzky launched LA (that’s the model) and a commitment of years can help demonstrate commitment to the community – so that ancillary benefit to the team has some weight.
          (and Tampa has been pretty successful in getting butts in the seats, not sure where they are overall but they have to be in the top 1/3 over the past 10 years (of course a lot of snowbirds help)).

          Thank g*d we don’t need Gomez to sell tickets.

    • ooder says:

      it’s ok.. we have Gomez
      mr. intangible himself!

      ——————
      Gomez: 36 and counting!

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      All things considered, is Vinny Lecavalier’s contract worse than Gomez’s? I would have said Vinny’s is way worse up until about 3 or 4 months ago when he turned good again, now I’m not sure.

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

      • J_P says:

        Vinnys is still worse. There’s no way he’s going to be a productive player, especially not to the tune of almost $8 million per year cap hit, through 2020. At least gomez is gone in 3 years at the most.

      • issie74 says:

        Regardless of his contract…I didn’t like the fact that he told Greg Millen of Hockey Night in Canada that his play had suffered because he was worried about the rumors he was going to be traded to Montreal,then he had a meeting with Stevie Y who assured him that he would be a part of the TBL for a long time,znd that was when his play picked up.
        All this was told on our National TV network.
        What is that?

  28. TheThinker says:

    We didn’t lose anything by letting moore go, we picked up Halpern in return for a lot less money than moore and at best they’re both 3rd liners.

    • TomNickle says:

      And more importantly. Halpern did no worse of a job in his role than Moore did as a Hab. Which makes letting him go and acquiring Halpern a good move, not a bad one.

  29. TomNickle says:

    My Top 3 most likely 1st round picks for the Habs.

    1. Nicklas Jensen(W) – Oshawa General standing 6’2 and weighing 187 lbs collected 58 points in 60 games in his first OHL season. Playing left wing on Oshawa’s second line made his point production more impressive because he didn’t have the luxury of playing with Boone Jenner on the top line. The Dane has collected 10 points in 10 WJC games. Very skilled and difficult to move off of the puck. Ranked #21 in NHL Central Scouting’s North American skater rankings.

    2. Phillip Danault(W) – Victoriaville – He is his team’s captain and collected 67 points in 64 games this season. The Habs have placed a serious emphasis on drafting players who are leaders and Danault fits that bill. He is 6’0 and 170 lbs and ranks #27 on NHL Central Scouting’s NA skaters list. Habs could possibly trade down and acquire a second round pick in addition to grabbing him in the first round.

    3. Seth Ambroz – W – Omaha – USHL – Amrboz is 6’2 and 210 lbs. He scored 46 points in 56 games with Omaha this season and despite his size still has some physical maturity to come. He addresses a current and long term organizational need as a skilled and physical forward and although he’s ranked 31st in the Central Scouting NA rankings, he’s viewed as a player with tremendous upside because of his size and skill combination. Speed could be somewhat of an issue with Ambroz but if any skill can be improved through hard work, it’s speed. This is a bit of a long shot and I’m only playing a hunch that the Habs will trade out of their pick in the first round and acquire a late first rounder and late second rounder.

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      It’s been a while since I’ve seen Seth Ambroz associated with the 1st round of the draft, he’s fallen to 2nd round on almost all the projections I’ve seen lately. Concerns are skating and inability to dominate the USHL this year. (Not that I wouldn’t mind seeing MTL get him with a 2nd-rounder if they can land one, but there are other guys I like a lot more and scouting in general has him a lot lower).

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

      • TomNickle says:

        If you take a second look at my post it says that with Ambroz specifically, I feel the only scenario where he’s taken by the Habs is in the event that they trade down to acquire a second rounder in addition to a late first rounder. I don’t feel trading down is a pipe dream. I think he’s very realistic at the end of the first round if not a lock.

        • SeriousFan09 says:

          Trading down is a high possibility if the Habs see “Their” guys taken before they can acquire them, but since we don’t know who those guys are… Ambroz is a possibility, but only in terms of grabbing him in the 2nd round. I think in the late 1st a name like Jurco could still be around, or Dmitri Jaskin.

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

          • TomNickle says:

            Jurco has all but guaranteed himself to be a top 20 with the Mem. Cup he’s had. Ambroz ranked at #31 among North American skaters when maybe three European ranked skaters and an outside chance at two North American goalies being chosen in the first round tells me that the end of the first round or top 10 in the second is where he’ll land. Especially with his size.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            If Fowler can fall to 12th in the draft, Jurco is still possible to go later in the 1st and Central Scouting has a serious weakness in that they do their final rankings far too early, well before CHL playoffs or the MEM Cup is played.

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

          • TomNickle says:

            But the hole in your logic is that the Memorial Cup can only improve Jurco’s draft status since he’s been the most dynamic offensive player in the tournament. On Fowler, about 2 weeks before the draft every media outlet started reporting that there were concerns about his toughness. That’s far more of a problem for a defenseman hoping to be drafted than it is for a skilled forward. I think you’re really reaching here Robert.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            The ranking had more to do with Ambroz’s position as I suspect CHL players pushed themselves past him with good post-season appearances.

            I agree Jurco’s raising his profile with the Memorial Cup quite a bit, but that gets weighed against his season, his playoffs and whether people say it exists or not, bias against anyone not born in NA. His WJC showing wasn’t much either. I still say he’s wildcard in the 2nd half, going either higher or lower depending upon who likes his upside. Concerns about his toughness and work ethic have followed him for most of the year.

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

          • TomNickle says:

            I guess we’ll see. Brett Connolly had similar questions raised but managed to go in the top 5. And as I said, question marks plague defensemen much more than they do forwards. I would be very surprised if Jurco makes it out of the top 20, shocked in fact.

        • SeriousFan09 says:

          wrong part of the topic

    • Sharks9 says:

      I think it would be better to get a big Centreman like Mark Scheifele or Mark McNeill.
      And I think it would be better to keep our first round where it is instead of trade down.

      25 before 14

    • TomNickle says:

      If you’re looking for players who will see their stock fall in between now and the draft the following list may help.

      Sven Baertschi
      Vladislav Namestnikov
      Mark McNeill
      Ty Rattie
      Boone Jenner
      Brandon Saad
      Connor Murphy
      Matt Puempel

  30. bwoar says:

    Any chance Horton gets a suspension? Or is this the wrong place to ask?

  31. Habastard says:

    Moore has been dynamite in his role in this playoff. Better than last year I think. He’s fast,intense and works his nads off in all 3 zones.
    PG messed up big on him last summer. Still can’t understand it
    except that maybe he`was asking too much early in the summer.
    Plus he gives back what he takes and it drives dirty players on other teams nuts bec ‘he’s not a fighter so therefore he’s just supposed to take all their dirty shots and just slink away’.

    Nattinen can be a good strong 2 way center for us. Don’t think
    he’ll be fast nor quick enough for 2nd line duty ever but I’m crossing my fingers he’ll make the habs in a few years. I think he’s been overlooked bec he hasn’t put up many points.

  32. Hobie Hansen says:

    @Robert

    We all know Desharnais could replace Gomez.
    We’d all like to see Wiz and Markov signed.

    Unfortunately, Gomez’s salary might drop but his cap hit doesn’t.
    We’re handcuffed for years to come…

    Even if his cap hit dropped to match his salary, would u sigh gomez for 4.5 or 5 million a season?

    Maybe 1 million !

  33. SeriousFan09 says:

    A potential later-round selection for MTL in the draft, check out Jean-Gabriel Pageau of the Gatineau Olympiques.

    http://bit.ly/jyT4uX

    He is unranked by Central Scouting, but the 5’09″ C scored 13G, 16A in 24 playoff games and was a major factor in the Olympiques reaching the Championship round in the Q playoffs, the only other Olympique who kept up with his points pace was an overager. He had 32G, 47A in the RS. (It should be noted Central Scouting rather unwisely IMHO compiles final rankings well before the CHL playoffs are complete or the Memorial Cup is played)

    I know I know, small guy but in the later rounds what’s the harm? Kid has some wheels and slick hands.

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

    • TomNickle says:

      Now you’re just looking for debate.

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      Update: His Gatineau teammate, the 2011 winner of the Jean Beliveau Trophy for the QMJHL scoring title Philip-Michael Devos was signed to his first professional contract by the TBL. Guy Boucher’s Q-league contacts at work? Probably means their organization has eyes on Pageau as well.

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

      • RobertAlanFord says:

        I agree. He’s still young and will put on a few inches and pounds but his numbers in his rookie year are quite promising. PG and TT should look into getting him in the draft this year cuz I have a feeling he’ll be turning a couple heads next year. It would be nice if he was already a Habs prospect when that happens.

        http://en.lhjmq.qc.ca/roster/show/id/6852

        Good call SeriousFan09!

        • SeriousFan09 says:

          Too much worrying already for me RE the 1st-round pick MTL has, I’m moving on now to see who they should grab with the later-round selections. Teemu Pulkkinen was a choice of mine for MTL last season but the Red Wings took him.

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

          • TomNickle says:

            It’s gotta be Jensen. I’d say there’s an outside chance they go with somebody like Jurco, although his stock is rising at a rapid rate with the Mem. Cup he’s having. There’s going to be a very good player there at 17 regardless. I’m more interested in whether or not Gauthier picks up a second rounder or can find a Gomez suitor at the draft, Eller’s injury may turn him off of that prospect however.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            No doubt Jensen is being watched by MTL with the Berger selection, just concerned they’re looking at Boone Jenner more than him. However again, with the wildcard nature of this draft I’m concerned my Top 3 (Scheifele, Jensen, Miller) will be tapped out before Habs can select. At that point, might do them well to trade down for a 2nd-rounder.

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

          • TomNickle says:

            Miller will fall to the second round unless he blows people away at the combine.

          • Sean Bonjovi says:

            edit

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

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            I’ve read the concerns from scouts RE Jurco and hence why he fell out of my top selections. His puck skills are probably the best out of the entire draft and I still like him from a pure talent perspective but I like the other players more for having a more complete game.

            I can’t say definitely he has a bad work ethic, haven’t seen a single game involving Junior players that wasn’t the WJC this year, this is me working off of any scouting talk I can find on these guys.

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

          • Sean Bonjovi says:

            SeriousFan09 thinks that Tomas Jurco has a poor work ethic.

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

      • RobertAlanFord says:

        http://en.lhjmq.qc.ca/roster/show/id/6852

        Good call. PG and TT should look into picking him up early cuz I get the feeling he’ll be turning heads next year.

      • TomNickle says:

        I say it’s time we start turning the tide on the Lightning. This off-season let’s offer up players like St.Denis, Carle and Dumont and see if Boucher puts some heat on Yzerman to give up assets for them. Maybe even Weber.

        • SeriousFan09 says:

          I doubt St-Denis or Carle offer much, even to a team very short on D prospects like TB. Chances are they might want Dumont (he did use to play for Guy Boucher) but these are all minor deals. Weber… I’d like to see him around for a while longer, see if he can grow his game and raise his value. If he improves his stick skills, positioning he can make a good leap forward.

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

          • TomNickle says:

            I think Weber is ready for a #5 or #6 spot now, but I don’t think he’s in the team’s plans. No reason to sign Diaz if Weber is part of your plan going forward.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            I think Diaz’s signing is getting overrated myself, I think Diaz is HAM-bound while Weber sticks with the big club, more Kyle Klubertanz than Mark Streit. Weber is cheaper long-term, Diaz will be UFA much, much quicker as well.

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

          • Jan_pronounced_Yan says:

            SeriousFan09:

            I diasgree with your assessment of the Diaz signing. Klubertanz was a North American player who played NCAA but never caught on anywhere and had to go play in Europe to gain some pro experience.

            Diaz has never come over here. He’s not a reject of this system. I do agree with you that FOR NOW, the signing is being overrated, because I do think he will strat the season in Hamilton and Weber will be with the Habs. However, when a former NHL coach comes out and says that he’s good enough to be a top-4 defenseman on the Habs, we’re no longer in Klubertanz territory.

            We’ll see what the kid’s got. From all I’ve read, it seems it’s his hockey IQ and vision that sets him apart. Those are things you can’t teach and that usually lead to success no matter where you play.

    • Sharks9 says:

      Yea that does look good, even though he’s small. Hopefully we can at least bulk up a bit and 5’9 is bigger than some guys on our team! So not too bad for a late round pick.
      Also, he’s French which could please some of the guys who whine about the team not being French enough.
      25 before 14

    • PeterStone says:

      Nice posts SF .. i enjoy reading your updates on the kids. Was watching some of the mem. cup this past week, that kid ZPhilips has really looked solid. I have not seen MMcNeil play, save for some utube footage, and I have read a few things about him, he sounds like a player.

      Tom .. totally agree with you. I think PG is going to be making a few moves this season. I hadnt considered some of the aspects you have brought forward, like Diaz setting up a potential deal for Weber, but it does make sense.

      Would really like to see the Habs move up in the draft, or , pick up another 1st rounder.

  34. RobertAlanFord says:

    @ shiram (again the reply limit)
    As good as he was last year I think the Habs have to part ways with Hamrlik. Wiz can have that spot and similar cash. They need him there in case (knock on wood) Markov’s knee blows a tire again. It cant all weigh on Subban for offensive support on the blueline. Wiz will be 27 and Hammer is 36, to me its a no brainer and the cash is there. His acquisition was a steal for the ages and to let that walk away would be a ridiculous decision.

    • shiram says:

      Reply limit : you can’t stop me man, I just keep on replying! heheh

      Yup Hamr will likely be gone, and keep Gill to have that seasoned veteran D presence, with maybe Spacek too, but he looked eh… soft in the playoffs, maybe an injury was till nagging, but still.

      Also you have to think Markov will have a big part on the offensive support part as well.

    • shiram says:

      You can’t stop me, I just keep on replying!

      Yup as great as Hamr was, and him stepping up and all, he will likely be gone, even with him willing to take a pay cut, the D needs some change.
      As for offensive support, you have to think that Markov will take a good chunk of it, as will Subban.

    • shiram says:

      This keeps eating my post, annoying!!
      Hamr = he was great in stepping up last season, but we need more mobile, young D. So even if he is willing to take a huge pay cut, I don’t see him coming back.
      As for offensive support, I’m sure Markov will help out Subban alot!

      • RobertAlanFord says:

        Like I said, as long as his knee holds strong and steady. If it doesn’t then that leaves Subban by himself offensively. Need one more to keep it balanced and secure.

        My picks on D as it stands:

        Wiz-Markov
        Subban-Gorges
        Weber-Spacek
        Yemelin

        Sorry Hal, unless some one would actually take Spacek for a couple of broken sticks then its gotta be this way. only other options are Yemi goes home or Weber is moved. Theres no easy decisions for our dmen.

        • patience is a virtue says:

          I agree with this, for the reasons stated, plus the fact that there are very few UFA forwards worth courting. Might as well beef up the offense on the back end.

          One caveat:

          Sign Markov to one year at 6 or even $6.5M, just in case he can’t regain his form. The Wiz will want to cash in on his career season, so about $4M per for 4 years should do it. If Markov is back for real, trade the Wiz (next summer if there are playoff hopes, before the deadline if not) to make room for Price, PK and Patches contract’s. If Markov can’t return to glory, the Wiz is about as good as we’re going to get for an offensive d replacement without sacrificing serious assets.

          • G-Man says:

            Wiz will be offered $5.5 to 6mil/season for the numbers he put up.

          • TomNickle says:

            Markov won’t get anything north of $5.5 million and Wisniewski won’t getting anything south of $4.75 – $5 million.

    • habs03 says:

      “They need him there in case (knock on wood) Markov’s knee blows a tire again”
      And what do we do in the case Wiz blows the same knee he has blown 3 times already at such a young age?

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      Subban and Price also need large raises before the 2012/13 season and having Markov and the Wiz on the roster at 5mill each will not be possible…

      The core should be: Subban, Markov, Gorges, Yemelin and some upstarts…

      Signing the Wiz also limits the Habs ability to sign a forward or two where we need the most help…

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      My opinion: Hamrlik is long gone.
      Can’t sign both Wiz and Markov to 5mill a year deals because Subban and Price are going to be asking for the same amount this time next year.

      Plus we should be able to be quite effective with Subban, Markov, Gorges and Yemelin as our core. Also, It would be nice if they went out and signed a rough and tough 5th or 6th defenseman like every team in the world has.

      Take the money you save from Hamrlik and Wizniewski departing and sign a very large forward with some skill while keeping in mind Subban and price will come knocking for raises in a year…

      • RobertAlanFord says:

        Our cap issues lie on Gomez’s contract. Thats the one that has to move by this time next year in order to accommodate Subban and Price. The way I see it Desharnais is doing the same job as Gomez for ALOT less $$$$$. He couldn’t fill his shoes next year but possibly the year after depending how he develops. With Gomer’s contract dropping to the 5 million dollar range in a year he’d be easier to dump as well. Price, Subban and Pacioretty can divvy it up.

        • Hobie Hansen says:

          Everybody would love to see somebody Gomez’s place…but it aint happening.

          So Signing Markov and Wizniewski to deals at 5mill a piece isn’t happening either.

          Gomez might drop to 5mill a season but his cap hit is still around 7mill….

        • Hobie Hansen says:

          You’re dreaming….

          His salary might drop but his cap hit does not….

  35. LA Loyalist says:

    Tampa Bay Sports analyst raving on the fan 590 about Domenic Moore and how he’s contributed.

    Just sayin…

    • TomNickle says:

      I wouldn’t expect a Tampa analyst to tell the truth, like that Moore has been mediocre since the first round. Just sayin.

      • coldness81 says:

        he’s a support player and he’s been very good at his role but he’s no st louis or stamkos…

        • TomNickle says:

          I don’t think you can say he would have been the difference for us or that he has been for Tampa. Depth player who was easily replaceable.

          • coldness81 says:

            nah i’m with you on this one. good at what he does but there are a bunch of players like him in the league. if he makes a difference for you on the score sheet it’s a extra bonus

          • RobertAlanFord says:

            Id say White is going to fill that role for us. Might take another year or two for him to get to that level but its in the oven.

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      Dominic Moore may also switch teams next year if he does his usual bit of looking for extra $ on July 1st, there’s a reason he bounces around the league despite generally solid 3rd-liner numbers. He wanted twice what he got from TBL this year to start with, than settled.

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

    • LA Loyalist says:

      Yeah he’s a homer, but why would he even mention Moore when he can talk about Vinnie et cie? He’s not selling anything. Just be honest and admit Gauthier coughed up a fur ball on that one.

      Most teams have killer first lines which may cancel each other out.
      It’s the third and fourth lines that often make the difference in the playoffs. We’re weird as we have an effed up 2nd line, but, the point stands.

      • TomNickle says:

        Because aside from one game in the ECF, Vinny has messed the bed. Gauthier made no mistake in letting Moore go, none. He isn’t a difference maker and his role was easily filled by Halpern. Our bottom six was absolutely stronger this season than it was last season.

  36. RobertAlanFord says:

    @ shiram (they cut off relpies after five or so)

    Maybe he and Weber are competing for the same spot as well. But its like you said, training camp will answer alot of questions.

    • shiram says:

      Well the spots are limited, but I feel Yemelin and Weber bring a different kind of game, so they would not compete for the same spot.
      I’d like to think that if Weber is not traded, he’d have a regular spot on the D as well, really liked his play during the playoffs.

      Still, the D is all up in the air for now, and we’ll see how PG/JM shake it all out.

      • RobertAlanFord says:

        Yup, he’s got ALOT of cards to fill six, maybe seven places. I think the first one to sign a one way will tell us what direction its all headed. !!!PG Please dont let Wiz go!!!!!!

        • shiram says:

          I’m still hoping for Markov first, and than if the cap allows in the coming years to sign Price/Subban long term, than sign Wiz.

          • RobertAlanFord says:

            Price and Subban are RFA’s next season so thats not a concern yet but will be come one year from now. Price will be looking for BIG bucks and Subban will be up for a significant raise as well. Gomez has to go if we wanna keep these guys long term and I honestly think PG should invest in our own guys.

          • shiram says:

            True enough, but signing Wiz to a big deal long term as impact on the cap for years to come. So that’s what I meant, if we wanna keep seeing Price/Subban in the bleu blanc and rouge, PG has to manage the cap carefully.

  37. Hobie Hansen says:

    Dear Steve Yzerman,

    Can u please trade us Downie and Malone for everyone on our roster except Subban, Price, Cammalleri, Gionta, Pacioretty, Plekanec, Yemelin, Gorges, Eller, Moen and White?

    Oh and anyone from Hamilton and Junior hockey except Jarod Tinordi.

    Thanks Stevey Y!

    • TomNickle says:

      Yeah let’s trade Leblanc, Gallagher, Kristo and whatever else they want for a forward who can’t keep pace with Travis Moen and a player who is no more valuable than Max Lapierre.

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        Don’t quite understand you comparison?

      • coldness81 says:

        i actually like malone… unfortunately not his current salary. but he can be a very effective player i think he helps open some ice with his net and corner pressence. now giving up the farm for him…not so sure about that

        • TomNickle says:

          The thing about acquiring players with size, they have to have sufficient speed to be a good fit with the team. Malone doesn’t have adequate speed to fit in with this group.

          • pat s says:

            Here we go again–just say you like a europen style of hockey andyou don’t like in your face rugged type of hockey–its ok, it doesn’t work but its ok

          • TomNickle says:

            Max Pacioretty is a perfect fit, Lars Eller, same. These are the players the organization targets because they have the speed to compliment our other skilled players.

            Just because I don’t want players who can skate a lick doesn’t mean I don’t want physical and skilled players on my team.

          • HardHabits says:

            I agree to a certain degree Tom. If a players has size and/or physical play it stands to reason that speed is a must if that player is to fit with this team.

            I realize you are talking about a forward with Malone. However if that’s the case for all players, then Gill wouldn’t return.

            However, if Gill isn’t resigned, who replaces his physical presence on the ice and leadership with the team?

    • RobertAlanFord says:

      I wouldn’t trade any of our prospects so quickly nor would I spend that much on Downey or Malone. Remember that Pacioretty is on his way to a full recovery and has proven his place. Also, he’s been putting on some serious muscle so far this off season. Up to 210 so far and still growing!!!!!

  38. RobertAlanFord says:

    This is a minor league signing which gives me the impression that White and/or Desharnais will not be in Hamilton next year. It seems that PG has been rebuilding the Bulldogs over the past couple of weeks with the signing of Diaz, Yemelin and now Naatinen. Also watch for Carle and/or Henry to not be back in the Bulldogs lineup next year.

    • shiram says:

      Yup PG is filling the Bulldogs back up with prospects that fit the need of the team. Yemelin though will likely be with the Habs at season start, as per his special clause in his contract, where he can go back to the khl if he is sent down to the AHL.

      • RobertAlanFord says:

        He also has the option of staying in Hamilton within said clause. I’m sure Markov may have to convince him that its only a short term stay and that he will be called up as soon as theres an injury or someone on d is not playing up to standard. (ahem…Spacek..)

        • shiram says:

          Well of course he can, the clause is so he has an out if he is sent there.
          But unless he needs to adapt to North American hockey, and ice rinks, then I don’t see why they would not have him on the team at the start of the season.
          I guess the training camp will answer alot of questions on him.

          • RobertAlanFord says:

            Exactly. His spot on the Habs roster isn’t set in stone yet. Trouble is if the coaching staff feel a month in the A would be beneficial and he doesn’t agree….. off he goes and its not like they would or can recall him from his KHL team. All we can do is wait and see how this pans out.

          • shiram says:

            Right, but still you take the good when you can, and this is the most progress the Habs have had with him, and after all that wait, it should be interesting to see what he can offer on this team.
            I’ve liked what I heard so far about him.

    • TomNickle says:

      Yemelin won’t be in Hamilton and Nattinen was a 3rd round pick. You don’t sign those guys to fill roster spots with your affiliate. Nattinen will surely spend time there but it will be for development, not to fill out a roster.

      • RobertAlanFord says:

        Development for sure but he wont wear a Habs uniform except in the coming preseason….. maybe. He’s not going to claim a first line spot even in Hamilton right away. Thats Russell or Boyd’s spot. He’ll be third or fourth with Avtsin or something along those lines.

    • pat s says:

      RobertAlanFord–i agree, these are all minor league signings for now, however some are making them sound like blockbuster signings–what joke

      • RobertAlanFord says:

        Sometimes these little signings ripple all the way up. But yes, they do tend to get blown out of proportion, especially in Montreal. Did you see these columns when Yemelin was signed????

        • pat s says:

          a joke–we have a norris trophy winner with that signing according to some of these posts

          before being a GM in Montreal was a don’t screw up job–your gone if you screw up–now they can do no wrong–what a joke

  39. TomNickle says:

    I think a trade is coming. The team now has Subban, Gorges, Weber, Klubertanz, Diaz, Stejskal and Carle to play the right side. Greg Pateryn will almost certainly be signed at this time next year when he finishes up at Michigan, Morgan Ellis is going into his final year of junior hockey so he’ll be signed at the same time if not earlier and Mac Bennett could leave school early if he takes a leap in his development between now and this time next year. In addition, at the centre position the team has Plekanec, Gomez, Eller, Desharnais, Leblanc, Engqvist, Nattinen, Dumont, Boyd and Bournival will be signed next off-season if not earlier with this coming year being his last junior year. That’s a lot of depth at the right defense and centre ice positions. Given the team’s history I find it highly unlikely that they’ll be walking away from their restricted free agents and find it equally unlikely that they’ll have two of those defensemen scratched each night in Hamilton.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      I’d love to see Klubertanz and Stejskal get a call up when Bob Cole is announcing the game.

    • G-Man says:

      No such thing as too much depth. Perhaps 50% to 75% of those players are AHL material (although they still have potential). The Habs are aware of mounting injuries and seem to have some insurance. Very nice problem to have!

      • TomNickle says:

        I agree but the depth that we have is in the minors. Which is why I feel that a trade here is inevitable. With Pateryn and Ellis likely to be added to the system within a calender year, I can’t see the team carrying 5 defensemen on the right side in Hamilton. I also can’t see them carrying all of these centreman. I left Fortier on the original list too. I’m thinking something’s gotta give.

  40. Hobie Hansen says:

    Do you think Yzerman would accept Desharnais, Pyatt, Diaz, Nattinen, Gomez, Avtsin, Spacek and Eller in a trade for Malone and Downie?

  41. Sakus Evil Twin says:

    Size – Hurrah!
    Grit? Not so much.
    We’re surely doomed…

    Over to you HH. Continue.

    No answers, just opinions. Bite me. Och.

    • nek25plus says:

      He’s a Finn…grit and determination lead their mission statement! What’s the problem? If you said”doesn’t score enough”, well ok, but grrrit!?

  42. sidhu says:

    What is the status of Mathieu Carle, does he have any future with the organization?

  43. Habitoban says:

    “In three seasons with Espoo and Hämeenlinna in the SM-Liiga, the 6’2’’, 186 lbs defenseman” — assume “defenseman” is a typo.

  44. Sharks9 says:

    Sounds like more of a passer than a scorer. Looks like a pretty good signing although it’ll be a year or two before he gets a chance at the big leagues. Tall kid but hopefully he’ll gain a bit of weight.
    25 before 14

  45. SeriousFan09 says:

    Nattinen is the 3rd player from MTL’s 2009 draft class to be signed to a contract (Dumont, Leblanc being first on that) and can be a potential faceoff expert for MTL down the line, he filled in that role notably for the Finnish World Junior squad.

    He may stay in the Finnish leagues for additional development though, with him being something of a long-term prospect.

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

    • TomNickle says:

      He also provided a strong two way game and was a key offensive player for the Swedes at the WJHC. You’ve been pigeon holing him for the last year based on stats in an offensively challenged league. The body of work he’s put in against competition at his age level has been an indication that he’ll be a good two way forward if he continues to develop. Not that he’ll be a faceoff specialist.

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        You unpigeonholed him all the way to Sweden!

        • TomNickle says:

          Against competition his age, he’s often been the most well rounded player on the ice. That’s the most important thing with prospects, you can’t anticipate their development in terms of production, you can only anticipate their growth potential physically and sometimes mentally and at 6’2 and 190, it’s safe to say with his frame that he’ll round out around 215-220. If he’s strong against physically comparable competition, it stands to reason that when his body catches up to the men he’ll be up against in the pros that he’ll continue to excel. Labeling him a faceoff specialist to be at this point in his young career is a narrow minded prediction.

          • HabFanSince72 says:

            “Labeling him a faceoff specialist to be at this point in his young career is a narrow minded prediction.”

            And labeling him a Swede is a geographic indiscretion.

          • TomNickle says:

            Yes it certainly is. More coffee sir.

      • SeriousFan09 says:

        I’m being realistic Tom, I’d like him to be closer to one of the Koivus than rather say a Halpern-type of player but at present, he’s done very little offensively in senior-league Finnish hockey and junior scoring is junior scoring, it’s a good indicator but it doesn’t always pan out.

        I’d like him to be more, but my responisbility is to avoid pie-in-the-sky projections for the youth movement.

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

        • TomNickle says:

          I think Jeff Halpern is a favourable comparable and not a pie in the sky projection. Halpern is certainly more than a playoff specialist, he’s a good two way player who can fill a number of roles. Nattinen certainly doesn’t project as a top 6 forward, but calling him a faceoff specialist to be is just as lofty as a top 6 forward projection is. If you’re going to consider his faceoff results from the WJHC, you must also consider that he scored in half of his games. That’s all that I’m saying here.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            Faceoff specialist doesn’t discount him chipping in some offence Tom, I just think with his ability to dominate faceoffs over a couple WJ appearances (He was great in the circle in 2010 as well) that it’s worth noting that it may end up being his most noted ability at a pro level. I’ve noted that to a certain extent, faceoff ability is be akin to goal scoring, some guys are just ‘naturals’.

            MTL can find plenty of defensive forwards for the Bottom-6 (we’ve proven that over the years) but to me, having a guy who can just win the faceoff is huge and can mean a difference in the big games hence why I like the idea of him becoming a young faceoff expert for MTL, rather than tapping the free agency pool each off-season or two. The main reason Pollock dealt for Jarvis was so he could have a guy who could just win a faceoff whenever the team needed it.

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

          • TomNickle says:

            Again, you can’t take the faceoff acumen into account and discount the goal scoring. If anything, the goal scoring is more impressive because faceoffs aren’t a big development focus for junior players. I feel that calling him a faceoff specialist doesn’t do his game justice.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            Yes but he hasn’t even scored 1 goal yet in the Finnish Elite league over 58 total games and has 4G in 24 games in their secondary league. I’m just concerned his goal-scoring is not something that will transcend to higher levels of hockey, he only has 4G in 18 WJC games as well despite being a TOI leader for his team in the ’10 and ’11 Games. So far the one ability that has stood out as being superior to anyone he’s playing against has been his ability to dominate the circle.

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

          • TomNickle says:

            What are his faceoff stastics in the SM?

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            SM-Liiga doesn’t keep those numbers unfortunately but his ability in circles has been noted by a couple places I visit for prospect chat.

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

    • Robert L says:

      With Avstin, isn’t Nattinen the fourth signed?


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