The morning after

Allan Walsh on Twitter: Let’s be clear about one thing.
Jaroslav Halak loved Mtl, his teammates and the fans. All he wanted
was the opportunity to play.

Gauthier rolls the dice – Red Fisher

Canadiens bet the house on Price – Pat Hickey
It’s again Price’s bus to drive – Dave Stubbs
• Arpon Basu suggests everyone chill• François Gagnon analyzes the trade
Elliotte Friedman’s take and Darren Pang’s
• Analysis from Bob Hartley, Michel Bergeron, Gaston Therrien, Yvon Pedneault and Marc Denis

Robert L and Chris Boyle weigh in
Justin Trudeau doesn’t like the deal
• Gauthier picked the wrong horse – Mario Leclerc
A bold move: Ken Campbell
• Damien Cox on Pierre Gauthier’s gutsy decision

• James Mirtle on the goalie surplus
• Scott Burnside: Don’t be too quick to knock Gauthier
The view from St. Louis

• One fan’s angry reaction


  1. coachdoug says:

    Robert L has it right on the money…set your emotions aside and be Mr. Spock.  

    The salary Cap is driving this.  Funny how every one wants to lynch PG but Bob Gainey actually is the one who put PG in this situation…  

    If the Habs could have resigned Plek for a 3.5 mil multi-year deal after his down year there would have been no need for Gomez’s albatross contract…we would have 4 mil of Cap space verses over paying by 2.5-3 million depending on what you think Gomez is worth…

    I know…maybe Plek did not want to resign and maybe he would have not had as good a regular season…but his age and durability made him a better choice IMO…Now we will have to roll the dice on Eller (Although he looks good) if Plek walks…which I think he will right to the Blue Jackets who need someone to feed Rick Nash pucks…

    The big challenge will be Price’s mindset coming into the season and how the fans react and what he does with their reaction…I do think that will be the mountain to climb…

    PK Subban will be on the blueline and that may make a lot of difference…we desperately need a young puck moving D Man…

    Really suprised everyone is jumping ship so soon…PG knew he was making a move that was unpopular with fans…We need some prospects we can grow and Eller looks solid…Shultz could definately come in next year and take up the enforcer role when needed…and we need one…

    I am with Arpon Basu…everyone needs to chill out

  2. Chris Aung-Thwin says:

    Yeah, they own his rights. He’s an RFA. So they can try to sign him, they can take him to arbitration, they can trade him, someone can make him an offer sheet or maybe he can find a big contract in the KHL.

    The Other Wing

  3. Slovak says:

    My brain stopped, when realizing that HABS management did not pay even a small amount of respect to Halak.

    Is this how you treat hardworking people in Montreal?

  4. TomNickle says:

    So as I predicted, you’re a Blues fan now.

  5. 24 Cups says:

    Chris – In essence, we get a mid 1st rounder who already has a few years of development time under his belt. Eller also has had some injuries so that may have delayed the maturation process. He’s presently ranked at the 17th best prospect who isn’t in the NHL full time.

    You also have to ask yourself what other deals might have been out there (realisticcally). It’s pretty obvious that Philly wasn’t giving up one of their young guns. Tampa has Downie and Ashton but they can go the UFA route and still keep their young assets. San Jose? I can’t believe that Wilson doesn’t aleady have something in the works in terms of his goaltending dilemma.

  6. Chris Aung-Thwin says:

    Most people’s reactions have been purely emotional. Off-ice, this was an insanely difficult trade for Gauthier to make. It’s so easy for us fans to hate it.

    But it’s not that bad. You’re right, Chris – we’re getting important depth at forward, something necessary for real playoff success. Hopefully PG isn’t done (why else make the trade this week?) and we continue to add a few contributors (I think we might go after Horton or Sharp or maybe both). We’d need to cut some fat (AK/SK and Hamrlik’s contract).

    The Other Wing

  7. EricInStL says:

    And what if St-Louis traded Halak ? to say Phily for Jeff Carter. How would you react ?????

    Remember it seems St-Louis has the rights to Halak…

    I would predict HIO posts would hit 3000….

  8. Chris says:

    What about Montreal fans? ;)

  9. HabFanSince72 says:

    Forgetting for a moment whether one likes or dislikes the deal, Justin Trudeau and Denis Coderre are massive tools aren’t they?



  10. Slovak says:

    you moved Halak for nothing – get used to it, all Blues fans are laughing at you…

    BillP. June 18, 2010 12:03AM CST
    Tremendous trade for the Blues. To me it’s a steal. Like I said on your blog last week Bernie the quickest way for the Blues to get to the next level is to acquire that franchise goalie. Sounded crazy last week, but not so much now does it? I’m still surprised the Canadiens pulled the trigger so quickly on dealing Halak. I would think another NHL team could of easily trumped the Blues offer, and I think Halak is worth much more than what they got in return. Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled for the Blues and am very pleased that management is looking at their options in the trade market. This is a great sign. But I’m not sure what’s up the Canadiens sleeve on this one. I don’t care if Carey Price is a 1rst round draft choice, the guy had a won loss record of 13 and 20 this year and he’s lost his last 5 playoff games as well. To me, this is not smart, doesn’t make sense and if the Blues were the Canadiens in this deal, the fans would be livid, and rightly so. I’m thrilled about the deal, but to me, it’s still a head scratcher from the Canadiens point of view. Have a great Friday!
  11. 24 Cups says:

    Blues’ fans have had enough of rebuilding.  Even though they have a ton of prospects, it’s time for St. Louis to make the playoffs.  Last year was a real setback.  Davidson knows he has to get to the next level right NOW.

  12. Chris says:

    With a day to think on it, I think it is a horrific, mind-blowingly stupid trade off the ice.  Regarding the on-ice return, it is pretty reasonable for a goalie.  I thought the Habs might get a low first-round pick and/or a high second round pick for either guy.  To get a very highly regarded prospect in Eller was as good a return as the Habs were going to get.

    Furthermore, I’ve said it many times before, and still believe it…goalies simply aren’t as all-important to team success as they were years ago.  Teams that have to rely on phenomenal goaltending can steal a round or two, as Montreal did this year, but will eventually run out of gas.  You need depth at forward and defence more than you need an elite or even star goalie.  A good team can hide a mediocre goalie, but a superstar goalie can rarely carry a bad team.

    All that being said, you have to get to the playoffs first.  Montreal had a feel-good run through the playoffs, something that should have had the fan base excited.  Anybody that believes that the fans in Montreal won’t have Carey Price on the shortest rope that any professional athlete has seen since Jocelyn Thibault are either naive or unrealistic.  The fans are going to be waiting for his first run of poor play and they are going to pounce, and pounce without mercy or open-mindedness. 

    Price might become a star in the NHL some day, but the Montreal organization continues to do almost nothing to facilitate that development…I hope he’s more up to the task than his behaviour of the last 18 months suggests he is.

  13. 24 Cups says:

    Indirectly, this trade was made because of all the money Gainey spent last summer.  We had two great assets in net (eventually one had to go) but you would have to be a fool to not think there were some cap implications to this decision. The only question now is who is Bernie Parent and who will be Doug Favell?  Price can’t break the bank without arbitration rights and a stellar track record so he won’t cost a lot of coin.  There is a glut of secondary goalies out on the market so we can get one for a year as a cheap, veteran back-up.  That will allow Desjardins to get lots of work in Hamilton.  I like Hedberg but he may go back to Europe. 

    Hab fans also have to come to grips with the fact that the goalie market has been weak for the past few years.  This trade proves that for sure.  Posters may not be in love with the deal but I’m greatful that we didn’t move a goalie for a veteran or a package of picks.  Getting a 21 year old with decent potential is so much better.

    Will Eller spend an enitre season in Hamilton or will the Habs feel the pressure to have him on the roster right away?  If so, there would appear to be no need to re-sign Moore.  Not unless he’s willing to play 4th line minutes (for less money) with Laps being a full time winger.  Or do they sign Moore, let Pleks walk and take their lumps for a few years until Eller develops?  I doubt there are any serious Cup runs for the next few years so there is time for the young guys to mature.

    Regardless of this trade, the Habs still need another top six forward who can score goals.

  14. Slovak says:

    “This wasn’t a knee-jerk trade based on three weeks,” said Armstrong, alluding to Halak’s brilliant postseason. “He’s played well at every level. And when he finally got the chance in that Montreal goal, he wouldn’t give it up. He’s a tough competitor. He’s just a winner.”

    WHY? Can some tell me why? Why they even did not talk to halak before the trade? Whyyyyyyyyyyy?

    And can some tell me why is Montreal in that black hole for so many years and when the team starts to climb up WEHEEEY lets give away one of the crucial parts….

    There is only one word after this shittttt


  15. nightmare_49 says:

       from Bernie Miklasz /

       Eller has a chance to be a special two-way player, but may not develop into a finisher. And what’s the Blues need up front more than anything — players who put scoring chances away. Montreal coveted Eller, who should help them in the near future. And the Blues are willing to pay Halak, who can become an unrestricted free agent after two more seasons. Both teams got something they wanted — even if Montreal fans initially stormed Internet message boards to protest the deal.

       Another quote: One NHL scout explained it to me this way: You need to have a stacked team around Mason to win big. But Halak is capable of getting it done with the support of a solid but unspectacular roster. The Buffalo model — with goaltender Ryan Miller — is an apt comparison.


    Darren Pang’s Perspective ……….

  16. TomNickle says:

    The team has said that they knew what Walsh would be seeking in money.

    If you’d like to blame somebody for this and pout about it, blame Joe Nieuwendyk.

  17. SeriousFan09 says:

    Final thought before I try and get some sleep again:

    This team is knowingly or unknowingly following the advice of Scotty Bowman who said earlier this year was not to trade Carey Price. Anyone here think they’re smarter than Scotty?


    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  18. TomNickle says:

    Apologies for the double post.

  19. SlovakHab says:

    Slovakia – Denmark 0:6. Eller played in that game and had 2 assists. He is not a nobody, but a talented, young center, a 1st round pick that gives us a depth at C.

    You only need 1 goalie, and we have Price, but also Desjardins and Sanford (UFA) in the AHL and there will be plenty of other goalies available. However, you need 4 centres. If we kept Halak, there would be no Plekanec and Eller. Hence, we have some good depth on C, unless Plekanec bolts.

    Look, I understand that 99% of hockey fans in Slovakia don’t support any team, only players. You are very probably one of them and I 100% understand it.

    But please understand that this is a Montreal Canadiens blog. If the Habs do well, we are happy. Regardless of the nationality of our goalie.

  20. slapshot777 says:

    Anyone who says they’re thinking about switching teams were never a true Habs fan to begin with. They are the “band wagoners” I say go and good riddance, because at the end of the day those are the people in here who constantly stir the pot with pointless posts. A trade made by your team is never going to be met with 100% agreement.

    Just look back at the past couple of trades before this one. PG trade a 2nd rounder for Dominic Moore, people were screaming at PG. What was his thinking, his lost his mind, way tto much to give up for a player like Moore. Those were just a few of the comments. After being here for a couple of months and seeing him play, now the same people want to re-sign Moore and saying what a good trade it was and how he is a hard worker.

    The Latendresse trade, again another example of people up in arms about how we traded away another good player, just watch him tear it up some place else, was rushed into the league too soon, trading a hometown kid. Again some of the comments made regarding that trade. We got the potential of a good player in return. It all started out great and then again those same people were praising Pouliot and sayng how good he was and we won the trade. Then Pouliot goes into a tail spin and those same posters now are beginning to sh!t on him.

    I too cheer for the logo on the front. Just like the commercial with Crosby it say that you play f the logo on front of the jersey not the name on the back.


    To you from failing hands we throw the torch, be yours to hold it high.

  21. G-Man says:

    You have to get to the conference finals, first. With Price, the Habs won’t.

  22. G-Man says:

    Getting tired of “supporting” the one who glares at his D for every softie he lets in. Trade the team player. Too bright for words.

  23. Clay4bc says:

    Quote:“If you’re going to call the organization classless, use something like
    facts to back it up. “,
    says the man spewing half truths and outright fabrications… but OK, I’ll oblige you…

    Fact: Jaro NEVER demanded “play me or trade me”. A reporter asked him if he wanted to be traded, and Halak replied (with class, I might add) that he just wants to play, wherever he may be. Classic case of words being put in his mouth, and idiots began citing it like it was a fact. Lies and half truths.

    Fact: Neither Jaro or his agent was contacted after the season to discuss a contract (so PG was spouting lies about the cap hit – he had no idea unless he asked Jaro what he wanted). Classless

    Fact: Jaro was not even given the courtesy of a call by the Canadiens to inform him of the trade – he had to find out through the media. Very classless

    Fact: Larry Robinson, a legend in the world of hockey and an excellent coach, calls the organization inquiring about a job, and iIS NOT EVEN GIVEN THE COURTESY OF A CALL BACK. Utterly and indefensible classless.



    “Peoples will only be truly free when the last king is strangled by the bowels of the last priest” Francois Laignelot


  24. Slovak says:

    because you are DUMBHEAD – do you understand that?

  25. Gil says:

    My only concern with that is that if eller is supposed to be a good 2nd line center, We then have plecks and gomez trying to fill the same role. Even if it isn’t this year, it will be a problem come 2012, and might depend on what we do with Moore. I like Moore on the 3rd line though, and think it would be wise to at least sign him to a 2-3 year deal.


    If Eller is NHL-ready, that gives us too many men at Center and not enough Wings, and either we’ll need to transition one of them to a wing position like Marleau did, or go through this whole trade deal again to find the right fits.

  26. Habsrule1 says:

    “Proven” sure has changed definitions since I started watching hockey lol

    No way was he going to fetch a top 6 forward after one good season and great playoff. Before this year, he had never even been a number 1 goalie in the NHL. Huet got us a 2nd round pick FFS.

    Go Habs Go!! “I don’t have a copy of Georges’ code, I don’t know what it is,”. “I think the code is that you’re here for your teammates. It’s not your code, it’s our code.” – Bob Gainey

  27. Chorske says:

    See, Adam? Told you so.

  28. Chorske says:

    Careful. Some jackarse will be telling you to go cheer for the Blues if you keep making sense like this.

  29. slapshot777 says:

    +1 ,  agreed Tom, deal was good considering what may have happen in the following couple of weeks with a goalie flood coming. I say PG got the best deal out there and took it knowing that he would have probably gotten much less going forward.


    To you from failing hands we throw the torch, be yours to hold it high.

  30. slapshot777 says:

    Your over re-acting Ed, PG make a smart hockey and business decision. If you were to poll the people in the hockey cirlcles, (GMs, Scouts, Coaches ) I am willing to bet that given a choice between Price and Halak, most would have chosen to keep Price.

    The problem with some Habs fans is that they react according to popularity, not common sense. If everyone would take a step back and look at the “ Overall ” picture they would have a better and more sensible approach to this trade.

    How many Habs fans who are pissed about this trade right now think Halak will command in salary 3.5 – 4.5 mil in salary? If anyone thinks Halak would sign for less knows nothing about how the system with regards to players salaries works. Price has a 2.2 mil salary included in that were a multitude of bonuses that Carey never met. So his actual salary for this past season was a little over 1 million. Since Carey never had a great season he doesn’t have much to work with in regards t leverage. He is RFA and is not arbitration eligible. The Habs can qualify him to the same money as season past or give him a slight increase and tht’s about it. They have 3-4 more years with Carey as an RFA, so they get to sign him now and still leave money on the table which they would have lost on Halak.

    This allows the Habs to bring in a veteran goalie to backup Price, and allow enough to re-sign Pleks and still have money to thinker with another forward or two. This trade meets the needs of the team and is the best of both worlds. It give the Habs more flexibility moving forward and also allows Halak to get number 1 status albeit somewhere else and also allows him to achieve the money he will be commanding.



    To you from failing hands we throw the torch, be yours to hold it high.

  31. smiler2729 says:

    Embarrassment of a trade? Look, you’ve been whining about this all over the place and all you’re doing is slagging the team and Price. Price didn’t trade Halak so your insults and lack of faith in him are immature.

    The Habs traded my favourite player once or twice (Kirk Muller to the Isles in ’94, Roy to the Avs in ’95 and Recchi to the Flyers in ’99), it happens but it’s only a hockey game, man, ya get over it pretty quick. This isn’t Fantasy league, there are so many intangible factors that go into dealing away a high profile player, you just have to have faith the team knows better than us fans.

    I promise you Carey Price will be great and so will Lars Eller.

  32. mrhabby says:

    i have always liked biron and its a perfect fit re: francophone and the philly thing.

    From what i remember in 2007 the talking heads really liked eller and they still do. its possible he could step right in on the second line ..he may be ready now. i do like his potential. we have alot of first round picks on team now. by dealing with halak now PG has some flexibility if pleks does not work out. i think they will end up signing him because there is not that much else out there.

    The rumour mill says marleau has no intention of leaving southern cal. lives in a relaxed atmosphere not one to trade it all in and play in a hotbed. he could go to LA or the laffs could throw buckets of money at him.

  33. TomNickle says:

    The Blackhawks won the Cup with 4 NHL defensemen, granted the fifth was injured.

    It’s a case of pick your poison, or weakness.

    Everyone has to do that, if we become inexpensive in areas instead of weak, we have a great shot at building a winner.

  34. jbroderi says:

    Maybe, but I heard Jean is a bit of a fiend for the Montreal nightlife!!  hahaha



    “I’ll take potent potables for 500, Alex” JB

  35. jbroderi says:

    I find Red’s articles ok at times, but I think these writers who were writing stories in the times of Dryden, Robinson, Savard, etc have unrealistic expectations and tend to be more negative with a “oohh my, the good days are gone now, but I guess we will watch these young guys try” 

    I found the article just an opinion based in very little fact.  Mind you, it is an important opinion, but just an opinion.  I was not enlightened when I read this article, and I find Red has become kinda ho hum boring with mild negativity.


    “I’ll take potent potables for 500, Alex” JB

  36. smiler2729 says:

    I don’t even pretend to begin to understand whatever you’re trying to say… maybe after a good cry and buying a St.Louis Blues #41 jersey will your thoughts be a little less confusing.

  37. TomNickle says:

    You aren’t the only person upset about this trade.  I’m not criticizing you for posting your frustrations, that’s your right as a fan.

    It’s also my right as a fan to disagree with just about everything you have to say.  I might add that most people who disagree with you seem to have a lot on the ball.

    No worries though, I’m sure you were a huge Price fan before he struggled, when he returns to form you’ll be right back on the bandwagon.

  38. Gil says:

    Play manager for a second. Say you know in arbitration, you would have to pay 4 million to keep him. If you refused, he becoems a UFA and you get NOTHING.

    And doing all your cap assesments, you figure 3 million is the max you can pay, while still being able to play 4 lines without career AHLers just filling gaps for 500K$. So you can’t afford what Halak will command, and you know that you’ll have to walk away from it.

    So you’ve got a choice. Take 2 up and coming prospects with good potential as you have determined this is your best offer, exhausting all others in a saturated UFA goalie market where most will likely go for 2-3million, or let Halak walk for nothing when you can’t pay him. Which is the better deal? Nothing or two players?



    I bet you’ll be back here screaming till you’re red in the face if plecks walks too because we should’ve traded him at the deadline to get some value instead of nothing for him as well liek so many others will. You can’t play both sides of the same coin and state both are bad choices though.

  39. HabFanSince72 says:

    Red’s senile. What’s your excuse?

  40. spos080808 says:

    Maybe Price can move in with a Habs great liek Beliveau. I mean Sid did live with Mario for a few years. HaHa.

  41. HabFanSince72 says:

    Philly notoriously don’t believe in the importance of the keeper, and they will feel vindicated in this by their cup run.


    No way they were going to trade Carter for Halak or Price.


  42. petefleet says:
    I am confused by the whole thing.  The only thing missing from the team in the playoffs was scoring (maybe a bit more defence).  Halak did all he could do.  From my perspective, I’d be looking to build on that not tear it apart.  Long term, short term, whatever.  Get Halak signed and go from there.  They can dump the salaries of the bums that didn’t show up all year and the the ones that are UFAs.  Now for all intents and purposes, it’s back to square one.  Don’t anyone tell me that Price is going to play 60+ games this year and win 40 of them, aint gonna happen.  On the flip side, Halak would have and probably will for sure in St.Louis.


    Go Habs Go

  43. Slovak says:

    Yeah you are the man aren’t you? 17 years of trying, HABS have management that laughs stright into your face and you follow like blind baby, great

  44. TomNickle says:

    Ed, I know how you feel about Jaro and I’m not trying to twist the knife but you understand that this team has to sign Markov to an extension and find a big impact forward or two, neither task will be cheap.

    Price has another two-three years prior to having any leverage in contract negotiations and is more cost efficient now.

    If Price fails, Gauthier is done.  But what if Price plays an a level that is even on par with Halak?  That isn’t far fetched considering their career statistics either.  Flipping a 9th round pick into a 1st and a 3rd?  That’s a pretty damn good deal in my books.


  45. coachdoug says:

    Spot on…How’s this for a headline “Zamboni driver wins Cup!”

  46. avatar_58 says:

    All the fans turning on Price should be a window into what next season will be like. I really don’t care how you felt about Halak – CAREY PRICE is the current #1 goaltending hab. He needs your support.

    Pull your heads from your backsides. Blame Guathier for being a tool but don’t turn on our own players ok? I want to hear chants of CAREY on opening night. Anything else is classless.

  47. jbroderi says:

    i agree with you 100&.  would you take cam ward over price??  I wouldn’t, and he had two great play-off runs and a conn smythe!  If ellar can score 20 to 25 golas or hit 60 to 70 points in the next 2 years and price can stay above .910, then we have got a solid, solid return for a 4 mill a year goalie!

    One thing though.  Can price move in with Gio to keep him in line??  that would be nice!!


    “I’ll take potent potables for 500, Alex” JB

  48. spos080808 says:

    Yah give an unproven goalie $5 million for a season? Come on now.

  49. spos080808 says:

    Proven? 43 total games in a season high for Halak makes him proven? One hot stretch in the playoffs in which he was also brutal at times makes him proven?…

    You also do realize there are MANY UFA goalies out there right now right? You do realize there are many goalies on the trade block right? You do realize Halak is unsigned right? You do realize he will be getting a HUGE raise when he has never proven he can be the guy for a full season right?

  50. adam76 says:

    No – you two are right.  I am the only man in this world upset with this embarrassment of a trade.  How dare I rant on a HABS message board.

  51. Gil says:

    People can jump off the bandwagon though, I just wish they’d hurry up and do it.

  52. coachdoug says:

    True…a team will never be perfect…but you have to be excellent…Detroit is the best example of this…their scraps are gems (Leino)

    Gomez was not a risk…it was obvious he was overpaid…

  53. jbroderi says:

    we tend to overhype players for the Habs.  What would you give up for Anti Niemi?  A cup winning goalie??  I know that he may not have played as well, or faced as many shots as Halak did, but really?  I think what the habs got would have been a steal for Niemi.  Jeff carter for halak is kind of foolish to think of really, and I think with the free agent golaies out there, maybe this was all gauthier could get, but we’ll never know.

    In the next 2 years, if price can have a 30 win season with save% above .910 and ellar can get 60 points in one of the seasons, and unless the blues win the cup, we will have won this trade.  I would take Price over Nabokov, niemi, and leighton, all of the other goaies who made the conference finals.  Let’s give this trade time to pan out before we flip out!!



    “I’ll take potent potables for 500, Alex” JB

  54. Rugger says:

    5 mil for Halak?  That would mean Plec walks, Moore walks, so Metro for 2nd line center or Laps?

  55. spos080808 says:

    You people do realize Halak is going to get a huge raise right. Probably multiple years at $4+ million…A guy wit ha career high of 43 games in the regular season is worth that? Come on now…Tuuka Raask just signed a deal worth $1.25 million…So because Halak had a good playoff run he is worth over $3 million more per season? Come on now people…Halak has never played a full season period. Npbody has any idea if he can handle 65+ games…He tired in the playoffs and was pulled in each series and that was just after a few games here and there…

    The Habs made THE right move based on the contract alone…

    Some of you fail to acknowledge that. Stop looking at just his playoff run. You need to look at the Habs cap space, how they have another goalie, the return they got, the fact that there are MANY free agent goalies and goalies on the trade block, the fact Halak has all the power with his contract since he is arbitration eligible, etc etc…

    If you look at ALL the factors it is obvious the Habs did the right thing. I do not get why you people cannot see that. A hot few weeks proves nothing!

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