Vanek set to make Habs debut in Phoenix; Gorges returns to Montreal

Goaltender Dustin Tokarski made an impressive debut in a Canadiens uniform Wednesday night, backstopping the Habs to a 4-3 shootout win in Anaheim.

And now Habs fans can get excited about Thomas Vanek making his Montreal debut Thursday in Phoenix against the Coyotes (9 p.m., TSN-HABS, RDS, TSN Radio 690). Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin acquired Vanek from the New York Islanders just before Wednesday’s 3 p.m. NHL trade deadline and the forward joined the team in Phoenix Thursday.

“Any time (you get traded) you’re excited to come in and meet the guys,” Vanek told reporters Thursday in Phoenix. “It’s a little bit overwhelming, but since the minute I found out I had been traded to Montreal, they’ve treated me first class. We just had a quick meeting this morning and I’m sure coach will let me know (who I’m playing with) later.”

Josh Gorges won’t be in the Canadiens’ lineup against the Coyotes. There were reports after Wednesday’s game that the defenceman has a broken hand and he returned home to Montreal Thursday to be re-evaluated by team doctors. Gorges is believed to have suffered the injury during last Saturday’s game against Toronto, but continued to play, including 21:28 of ice time in the win over Anaheim.

Tokarski, who was called up from the AHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs after Carey Price was sidelined with a lower-body injury, said he only worried about one thing in his Habs debut Wednesday night.

“I had to take it as any other game and just do what I did to get here,” he told reporters in Anaheim after the game.  “I had to go out there and worry about one thing, stopping the puck. I just had to block everything else out. I think it’s good to have nerves. I had to fight them off and at the end of the first I got a lot of saves in after not many in the first 10 minutes. It felt good going into the second to have some shots.”

The Canadiens didn’t have a morning skate in Phoenix, but injured players Brandon Prust (upper body), Michael Bournival (concussion) and Price all skated at Jobing.com Arena.

GM Bergevin, who was in Chicago Wednesday for the funeral of his mother-in-law, was to join the team Thursday in Phoenix and meet with reporters shortly before the start of the game.

(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Habs vs. Coyotes preview, NHL.com

Game Day Report, Canadiens.com

Game Notes, phoenixcoyotes.com

Canadiens edge Ducks 4-3 in shootout, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

Tokarski thanks his lucky posts, by Pat Hickey

Habs vs. Ducks photo gallery, montrealgazette.com

A first game to remember for Tokarski, Canadiens.com

Canadiens acquire Vanek from Islanders, by Pat Hickey

Vanek deal goes down to the wire, by The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs

Habs pull off bold trade for Vanek, NHL.com

All business for Vanek, Canadiens.com

Does Vanek make Habs Cup contender? (audio), TSN Radio 690

Habs prospect Bozon in critical condition with meningitis, montrealgazette.com

Former Hab Halak now a Capital, NHL.com

Trade deadline roundup, NHL.com

Five winners and five losers at NHL trade deadline, The Hockey News

Trade a sad harbinger for Islanders, The Hockey News

 

 

519 Comments

  1. dabez14 says:

    Any updates on confirmed lines or do I have to sit here and patiently await the game? Lots of good suggestions being floated around

  2. HankHardball says:

    Hoping Vanek clicks with Plec & Gio. But there’s often been a chemistry deficiency no matter who plays with those two.

    If it doesn’t work, I think they should consider putting Briere back with them, and playing Vanek with Eller & Galchenyuk.

    Who cares if Vanek’s on a so called 3rd line if they put up points like the egg line did at the start.

  3. HankHardball says:

    Don’t panic if they lose tonight.

    With Price out, and Vanek & Weaver likely to play without having skated with the team before, and playing the 2nd road game in 24hrs, they could be hard pressed to maintain the positive record they’ve had against the Coyotes lately.

  4. icky pop says:

    Tokarski is from my town. I’m pretty sure he isn’t a toker.

  5. Danno says:

    New threat…

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  6. MacHenri says:

    Vanek in any line combination will be a big boost!

    I am just happy MB made the deal, including Weaver. These players can only help the cause.

    And lets lighten up on Eller. He is young and a very talented player – he like others before him – is going through a slump. A slump that can be corrected with patience and rediscovering chemistry with the right combination: Vanek!

    We seem to have more jump in our game and a quicker transition with the infusion of more youth.

    Go Habs!

  7. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Vaneks likely with Pleky and Gio. As he said he prefers the left. Be patient everyone he’s not going to walk out there and score 6 goals.

  8. Phil C says:

    If Gorges has a broken hand, that’s at least 6 weeks like Galchenyuk, so he’ll miss some of the first round of the playoffs. A bit of a hit but I think they have the depth to deal with it.

  9. bellcentre hotdog says:

    Josh Gorges takes a lot of criticism on this site.

    But though Gorges is sometimes outsized, he is never out worked. And his willingness to block shots is unbelievable. Even in the beer leagues the shots hurt like hell, so I don’t know how the guy is able to finish some shifts after blocking NHL calibre shots.

    What a warrior.

    • Cal says:

      It’s called body armour. But, yeah, he plays within his limits.

    • gumper says:

      +26

      The rule is perfect: in all matters of opinion our adversaries are insane.
      Mark Twain

    • silversnake says:

      Gorges has always been giving criticism because they want him to be something he’s not. They put the faults of the team on him when what he does and what he brings is exactly what we need from him. He’s not flashy, he does his job and does it well.

      Yes he get pushed around and he won’t clear the net that well but he’s a beast on the PK and he is sound defensively and will step in front of any shot.

      He’s been a warrior all his left and played with bad knee, one that needed surgery, for almost 7 years

      He is a warrior and he has been my favorite hab since the first game I saw him after being traded here.

      The good that will come of this is that people maybe will start to realize everything that he brought when we wonder what’s missing.

  10. gumper says:

    Any word on who draws in for Gorges? I’d like to have a look at Weaver.

    The rule is perfect: in all matters of opinion our adversaries are insane.
    Mark Twain

  11. Newf_Habster says:

    So who will start in net for us tonight?

  12. Just A Guy says:

    Just a thought: Is Emelin a little messed up from coming back from the Olympics, if I recall he was allowed to play on his natural left side.

    Maybe pair him up with Subban? I wonder if they put Weaver with Markov and keep the 3rd pairing the same.

    Just another thought: New CBA to figure out, now that the trade deadline is past, does that mean there is no roster limit anymore?

    • gumper says:

      IMO he’s been somewhat better since the olympics. Not stellar last night, but I like the fact that he’s started shooting from the point again. He has a surprisingly hard, low slapshot that sometime finds its way into the net.

      The rule is perfect: in all matters of opinion our adversaries are insane.
      Mark Twain

      • Just A Guy says:

        He had above average offensive success in the KHL from what I remember, but his slapshots are missing the net which got him into a bit of trouble last night if I recall.

  13. 2014 Norris Trophy winner, "Dan Hamhuis"! says:

    Just watched the highlights again and I noticed that after Marky scored the winner Subby and a few guys went to him and the rest of the team went to Toker. So which one of those guys did it the “White Way”?

  14. HankHardball says:

    Favourable schedule?

    9 of the Habs remaining 18 regular season games are against teams that aren’t currently ranked as playoff teams…And only 4 games are against teams with more points than the Habs.

  15. Maritime Ronn says:

    ” Leafs GM Dave Nonis chose to stand pat…..”I’m not convinced that adding the players that we could have added would have made us that much better, if at all,” Nonis said.
    ———
    Leafs:
    Goals against per Game: 2.96 ranked 26th in the NHL.
    Shots Against per Game: 36.1 ranked 30th in the NHL.
    Total Giveaways: 719. 2nd worst in the NHL behind Edmonton.

    Just wondering, but do ya think you might just have a 6 man- D unit- back end problem?

    You mean Dmen such as Rostislav Klesla, Andrej Meszaros, Andrew MacDonald are all worse than the gang you have now?
    Andy MacDonald?

  16. habs1992 says:

    “you aint a beauty but hey your alright” THE VANEK ERA BEGINS

    I support Carey Price
    “Habs Insider”

    • Thomas Le Fan says:

      Since you’ve used quotation marks, does that mean The Boss can’t spell?

      Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

  17. habs1992 says:

    What a win last night was, very impressive :)

    I support Carey Price
    “Habs Insider”

  18. Thomas Le Fan says:

    I’ll be checking out Hawks vs Blue Jackets as the early game tonight. I predict a good one there. The Jackets are looking good and the Hawks will be a good matchup.

    Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

  19. ffenliv says:

    In reading an article about the potential positive impact of the Vanek trade on the CBC website, they had a few stats at the bottom, including:

    Eller has only 1 point in 21 games?

    Jeebus!

    A lot of people here cut him slack saying if he had better linemates/more time/more consistent lines, etc. I used to believe those people.

    Eller should be able to do better than that with ME on his line. There’s no linemates excuse that can cover that poor production.

    What the hell is up?

    • habs-fan-84 says:

      Yup.
      If Eller is the potential offensive juggernaut some people here claim, he should be making his linemates better. Not the other way around.

      Eller has shown flashes of brilliance over the past 3 seasons, but he needs to become more consistent (the rotating linemates excuse while true, is becoming tired). I still have high hopes for him and think he can still become a solid 2nd or 3rd line center. I’d just like to see more consistency.

      Anyway, that’s about my 3rd similar post regarding Eller in the past 2 days. I’m going to back off now.

    • Mike Boone says:

      Size? Check!
      Speed? Check!
      Compete level? Check!
      Hockey IQ? Hmmm, lemme get back to you on that.

      Mike Boone
      Hockey Inside/Out blogger

      • Paz says:

        I don’t think it’s hockey IQ because I’ve seen him play well, make good decisions, with and without the puck.

        He has lost his confidence, he’s playing scared to make a mistake.

        Any elite athlete will tell you that they must believe in themselves otherwise the game falls apart.

        Coaches should talk to him. Get him to relax. Define very specifically his role on the team, and then ask him to play that role.

        Ask him to go back to basics, believe in his skills, make the simple play. Play in him situations where he can most likely succeed.

        The game is moving too fast for Eller right now. He has slow things down, relax, and then his skills will take over.

    • ffenliv says:

      Maybe after some experimentation, it’ll turn out Vanek and Eller have a natural chemistry born of being from hockey nations that don’t send a lot of people to the NHL?

    • Just A Guy says:

      Its a peculiarity isn’t it since he seems to be rather lucid in the defensive zone. The trouble seems to begin when he tries to cross his own blueline :D

      • ffenliv says:

        Ya, don’t get me wrong. I like the guy. And who doesn’t remember the 4-goal night, but I wonder about his place in the team long-term, and what’ll happen as RFA this summer. His awful stretch here, unless mitigated by a sudden and dramatic return to form in the playoffs, could really hurt the contract he’s offered.

  20. rhino514 says:

    I think every playoff game won nets a cool million for the hab´s owner, so, apart from what I noted earlier today about possibly helping the production of other players on the team who we will be able to better gauge, the trade makes sense on that note.
    I´m in the minority here, but to me it just isn´t natural acquiring a player who will be leaving after twenty + playoffs games; the whole thing is just surreal. Here is the big sniper who is all we need to make us true contenders…..oh, it was just a tease. We can look back and say we had a fantasy team for about 30 games
    Nor do I get the Weaver signing (unless…I am hearing Georges has broken his hand?).
    All in all a 2nd, a 5th, Collberg, and future considerations lost in the last couple of days.
    Like I said, I realize I am in the minority.
    Two things need to happen for the trade to have merit; an increase in production from a few of; Eller especially, but also Pacioretty who will be less monitored, Plekanec, possibly Briere and Gionta will let management see how valuable these guys can be when well insulated/complemented, and act accoridingly to find a sniper in the off-season.
    That, and the habs have to win at least two playoff rounds.

    • Thomas Le Fan says:

      Despite what everybody knows, nothing is chipped in stone. Vanek is here now. Let’s live in the moment and see what happens tomorrow … you know … tomorrow. Go Habs.

      Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

    • New says:

      Collberg was a remarkable draft finding. In a few years, if he ever decides to get serious and come over, people could look back on this and think the Habs fools. On the other hand should Vanek get comfortable in Montreal, re-sign, and become an integral part of the team the same folks will think it a sensible deal. Then again Collberg could stay home, never pan out, and Vanek could move to Minny. HIO is full of people knowing the answers to all that, when to boo and trash players and teams, who is playing well and who isn’t. The NHL has standings that reflect another reality and if you stay sober and watch the games you see an entirely different team than usually described here.

      Classy move to play Parros yesterday. The team is in good hands and plays hard. They have come a long way in only a year and a bit.

    • Phil C says:

      They get a 5th back from New York, so it’s Collberg and a 2nd.

      You’re right, not cheap. It is not a move you can afford to make every year. On the other hand, this is one of the best situations they have ever been in heading into the Stanley Cup in the last 20 years. The timing was good to do it this year as the prices for rentals were lower than normal, the team is healthy, and the Eastern conference is wide open. It is really hard to win it all in a parity league, so sometimes you have to strike when the opportunity is there.

    • habsr4ever says:

      Here we go with the negativity on our trades we just loaded up our team for. Why go to negative town. The team is in third place in the EAST – GM’s are supposed to load up. We gave up something yes. But we landed the top rental player out there which was EXACTLY what we needed. You keep forgetting about the message it sends to his current players and future players about coming here. Will Vanek leave to Minny – YES he will. Who cares – NHL teams who have a shot do this. It is the way things are done. Live with it and be happy. Markov and Subban are up for big dollars – this deal may save us millions of dollars and hence leave us cap space to sign other UFA’s. BIG picture people. We all have our opinions and sorry if I am coming accross to strong. I am just baffled at how people are complaining about this deal when all the REST of the NHL are in shock Bergy landed Vanek for what he gave up. EVERY other GM would have made the same deal if they were in our shoe’s. Enjoy the playoffs – we are contenders in the EAST now. Philly Boston Pens and us are the front runners. Philly scare the crap out of me. Boston I hate so much I don’t get scared of them. Pens have Fleury – I like our chances. Notice I didn’t say Cup contenders. WEST is too strong for us. Hawks and Blues and Kings will light us up if we meet them in the finals. Ducks and Sharks I think we can beat. But not these other three. Enjoy the ride Hab fans we are good enough for a deep playoff run (hoping for final four). Remember the Halak run and how much fun that was? Well fasten your seat belts it CAN happen again this year. No Cup but who cares – we are EAST contenders and the playoff experience for our young guns will pay off down the road. Habs are Cup champs in 2016-17. Book it. lol.

    • JF says:

      Alex Kovalev was acquired as a rental during the Gainey era (2003 I think). He intended to test the free agent market that summer, but fell in love with Montréal and playing at the Bell Centre. Who knows, the same thing could happen wth Vanek. He’s Austrian, and Montréal is the most European city in the League.

  21. sprague cleghorn says:

    Judging from the general fan reaction to the Vanek deal, I would have to say that TV Is the Thing This Year…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=37ssltwvHR0
    … ‘ow could we forget that?

  22. 25insight says:

    http://canadiens.nhl.com/club/blogpost.htm?id=26886

    Video of Vanek’s reaction to the trade.

  23. CHicoHab says:

    Burly. Betting on Habs traditionally always a safe bet.

  24. BigB says:

    My beloved Habs are in town!!!!!! Been waiting for this since….well, along time ago.
    Section 104. Super excited. Wish all my HIO bros and sisters were here too. Anyone else attending the game?
    2 more points baby!

    Habs forever!

  25. CHicoHab says:

    I’m a frame of mind that anytime the Habs start a playoff regardless who’s in net, defense or forward there’s always a chance we can get 16 wins. Once that puck drops game 1 it’s adrenalin adrenalin adrenalin. This year more so with TV in the line up!!!

  26. Maritime Ronn says:

    Vanek’s numbers against some possible playoff matchup teams:

    Toronto Maple Leafs: GP:49 G:22 A:26 PTS:48
    Boston Bruins………..: GP:53 G:30 A:31 PTS:61
    Tampa Bay Lightning: GP:35 G:25 A:15 PTS:40
    Philadelphia Flyers….: GP:33 G:13 A:16 PTS:29

    Career playoffs:
    GP: 36. G:15 A:5

  27. HabinBurlington says:

    Well time to go collect. Got one Duck fan at the watering hole, he was insistent we make a bet. Normally wouldn’t bet on a Ducks/Habs game, then he was adamant it be 20 bucks, I said no just a pint (forgetting he drinks King Can’s thus his nickname..).

    Okay, well time for me to go remind him of his bet.

    Not about the money, just the fact he has to open his wallet in front of Leaf fans and pay a Hab fan anything is good for me.

    CHeers everyone.

    Fearless prediction, Habs 3 Phoenix 1, Weaver with a goal.

  28. Luke says:

    Well, I’m off folks.

    Icedogs, so I’ll be recording the game, and thus (probably) not checking in here later.

    Everybody have fun!

  29. habs001 says:

    Vanek was a very good pick up as you need scoring in the playoffs…Hopefully the consistent scorers on the team maintain their pace in the playoffs and the Habs get a couple of the under performers to raise their production…As i mentioned earlier it is great that the team picked up 7/10 points in the last 5 games but non in regulation and if you are constantly in overtime in a series you can win that series fast but you can be elliminated just as fast..no loser points or s/o in the playoffs..

  30. Strummer says:

    At least Gorges had the good sense to break his hand BEFORE the trade deadline

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

  31. Garbo says:

    Based on the poll, I like our chances for the cup … 50/50.

    Count me as a believer.

  32. theox_8 says:

    Gorges and Emelin for 8 big ones a year is pretty laughable . Here’s to hoping Emmy picks it up .

  33. mdp2011 says:

    Interesting article from Pierre LeBrun where he polled the GM’s as to who had the best deadline day. Mb gets lots of praise.

    http://espn.go.com/blog/nhl/post/_/id/29488/gms-praise-moves-by-blues-habs-wild

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      “The Wild were [were praised] after [they] got busy over a 48-hour period, adding goalie Ilya Bryzgalov and scorer Matt Moulson. ”

      Bryzgalov? The same guy who was in Philly last year? Really?
      —–
      Moving. Forward.

  34. krob1000 says:

    Does this new group get a gellin period?

  35. 24 Cups says:

    A great piece by UCE. It’s quite long but kind of puts things in perspective. For whatever reason, he couldn’t post it this afternoon.

    “In what is seen as at least a minor coup, Canadiens General Manager and his band of merry men heisted the New York Islanders’ hapless Garth Snow at the trade deadline, making off with prized scoring winger Tomas Vanek as the clock struck twelve (Pacific Standard Time). To console the forlorn Isles GM and his boss Charles Wang (are these guys the modern-day equivalent of Herb Tarleck and Arthur Carlson?), the Canadiens left them with lovely parting gifts in the form of prospect Sebastian Collberg and a conditional second-round draft pick.

    At least, that seems to be the narrative that we Canadiens fans are spinning for ourselves. We can be a mercurial bunch, at least as much as any other team’s fans, but while we’re backslapping each other, congratulating ourselves that Mr. Vanek will resuscitate the Canadiens ‘three balanced scoring lines’ identity, we’re already rewriting history.

    I think the general consensus before the deadline was that the Canadiens were not ‘true’ contenders, not in a league with the Penguins or Bruins (although we match up well with those two teams) or the Western powerhouses like the Kings, Sharks, Blues, Ducks, Blackhawks or Blues. So we tended to agree that the gameplan was to possibly make some moves on the fringe, maybe adding some depth on the cheap, maybe swapping a veteran with an expiring contract for low picks, but in the main staying away from expensive rentals. We didn’t want to jeopardize the future by splurging on an uncommitted mercenary with an eye on the exit door (and hello to you, Michael Ryder) at the cost of precious draft picks or prospects.

    Yet that’s exactly what the Canadiens did. The Canadiens picked up a player in Thomas Vanek whose contract expires in July, and who has been quite clear that he wants to explore the free agent market. He turned down a 7 year, $50M contract offer from the Islanders, to buttress this statement.

    Now, if his name was Timothé Vaillancourt, and there was a natural affinity there and a likelihood of signing him to a new deal, that would be one thing, but all the signs point to him signing with Minnesota next summer, for various reasons. He went to school there, met his wife there, they own a home there, his buddy Jason Pominville plays there… The only way he doesn’t end up there is if the Wild ownership gets queasy handing out another long-term deal with Dany Heatley’s just expiring, and with Jason Pominville, Ryan Suter and Zach Parisé on the books for a long, long time. Right?

    There’s no denying that Thomas Vanek will provide immediate help. Not only is he a frontline player-borderline star, he fills a position of need, and checks off many requirements, in that he’s a big winger who can score, and do so while lurking near the crease, creating havoc. If Marc Bergevin had managed to pry out a player of equivalent talent, but who happened to be a playmaking centre or a left-shooting defenceman, that would have been more ice for the Inuit, but Thomas Vanek really scratches our itch.

    Also, what was thought to be a sellers’ market at the outset turned out instead to a buyer’s market, so Marc Bergevin may have started out the day with the best intentions in terms of planning for the future, but then sensed an opportunity when players like Mr. Vanek as well as Marian Gaborik, Matt Moulson and Mike Cammalleri were withering on the vine and re-entered the fray. Compared to last season, when players like Jarome Iginla and Jaromir Jagr were each flipped for a first-rounder and a couple of prospects, the returns for deadline rental player acquisition were meager this go-around. So maybe a GM who normally doesn’t shop at Holt-Renfrew got drawn in by the big “Sale!” signs in the window.

    Still, we shouldn’t in our haste to put the best spin on this situation go overboard. We shouldn’t pretend that Sebastian Collberg wasn’t a prime prospect of the team, at least in our collective mind. We were overjoyed that he ‘fell’ to us in the second round of the 2012 draft. We started doing handsprings when the Columbus Blue Jackets, starting the round two slots ahead of us at #31, announced their choice of Oscar Dansk, and the Oilers followed that up with Mitchell Moroz. We right away put him on the wing next to fellow draftee Alex Galchenyuk. In our fevered imagination, Alex would be the playmaker and Sebastian, so skilled and slick, would be the finisher, lethal around the net.

    This opinion was confirmed by reports from Brossard when he attended rookie camps. He was so far ahead of everyone in terms of skill it appeared he didn’t belong there, it was claimed. In drills, he wowed everyone. In scrimmages, he made his linemates look terrific and opponents look foolish. We licked our chops, and downplayed the fact that he didn’t look great during regular training camp.

    Same when we saw him in World Junior action, he was borderline dominant in the year following his draft, and we pointed to that as evidence of the wisdom Trevor Timmins showed in drafting him. Never mind that he struggled at Frolunda, rarely seeing the ice, and even more rarely making an impact.

    He’s fast and quick, and yeah he’s a little undersized, we allowed, but he’ll pack on ‘fifteen or twenty pounds of pure muscle’ over a summer of training. Maybe two summers. That’s easy.

    But now that we have divested ourselves of his services, we’re flipping the script, focusing on his stagnant development, his poor play in the SHL. We grouse that the knee injury he suffered during the WJC prep tournament in Lake Placid last summer robbed him of his speed. For good. Like Andrei Markov. Like Sergio Momesso.

    So let’s be of clear eyes and sound mind on this. We got a near-perfect deadline rental player acquisition, one who’ll fill quite a few needs for a playoff push, but who’ll most probably leave this summer. The cost was a relatively reasonable but still considerable second-round pick, of which we’ve had too few over the last decade, and a stalled prospect who still possesses a massive upside, in an area of need for the team.

    Let’s enjoy the ride, but we don’t need to put blinders on.”

    • netninja says:

      I am happy to see I am not the only one who saw Colberg for the potential he has, and while i don’t think this was a bad deal i do think people are downplaying this kids value and in the end I think he’ll be big in NY. Mark my words, the next forsberg (Peter not Filip) :)

    • johnnylarue says:

      Thanks for the re-post! (Though I personally would have left out any mention of UCe and claimed it as my own…)

    • habsr4ever says:

      Have to disagree here. Colberg has slipped the past year down our prospect list. Not just saying that because we traded him away for Vanek. He will make the show but certainly no guarantees he will be a top 6….in fact some say he is only going to be a fourth liner at best. Obviously nobody knows. But Bergy knew Sebastian’s stock was falling this year and decided to pull the trigger on our prospect. There are questions about his size and strength and lack of finish. He is not going to make this rental look bad in a few years. Giving up a second round draft pick to me does hurt more than Colberg. 2014 is a weaker draft than 2015 so great….and the message it sends to the players and other UFA’s is tremendous. Hands down it is a NO brainer and the right trade for us RIGHT NOW. U need to go for it. We have Markov we want to sign for a discount, we want PK for a nickel and absolutley it sends a message to our current and future players – our GM has our back if we make the playoffs. I want to play here. Third rounder for Lee Stempniak? HELLO people – we just landed Vanek and didn’t give up a first rounder or one of our top prospects! Great trade and we can downplay Colberg all we want because the fact is his stock has fallen in the past year and a bone head GM bit on him. There are many questions about his GAME and being a top 6 forward now. Bottom six forward at best for Colberg. I wish Sebastien all the best with the Islanders I really do. But remember Nielsen and all the hype he got. And Nielsen was a WAY higher end prospect than Colberg is. Again we don’t know but all we do know is Colberg’s stock is declining.

  36. habsr4ever says:

    People who pick on Gorges need to shake their head. Is he over paid? YES. He is worth $3 M not $3.9 M. I think we all get this part and agree. But seriously – he NEVER mails it in (like Bourque or Gomez) and pretty much NEVER has a horrible game like Emelin has. He has his moments cuz he certaintly isn’t highly skilled. He is a defensive dman who is always in position who could use the body a bit more. REMEMBER he would have signed the summer before his UFA status for under $3 M (his agent even said so) but our stupid GM at the time wanted to wait to sign him. THEN he was screwed cuz Gorges knew the Habs had to sign him cuz we had no D in our system ready. Boom it cost us $900 K + extra per year. All I am trying to say is let’s use the glass half full on Gorges. He is an NHL Dman…..top 4 is stretching it but a top 5 is a FOR SURE. He contract says top 4 – and he is currently on our top paring with Suban so he is EARNING his paycheque. The contract we should be questioning right now is Emelin’s. Emelin hits like a truck but come on – maybe I am the only one nervous about $4.1 M on the books for a while starting next season but geez let’s get a grip. Gorges shouldn’t be picked on nearly as much as he does for what he has brought to our team over the years and is doing this season for us. $3.9 M isn’t HIS fault. You know what you are getting when Josh is on the ice.

  37. Luke says:

    From the Twitter (G Gallant accoring to Momesso ):

    Subbosaurus – Tinor-dawg
    Sparkov – Emel-gun
    Weavey – The Loch Ness Murrster.

    • Forum Dog says:

      Me likey. Murray-Weaver should be tough to play against. As long as Murray can hold onto his stick.

      • johnnylarue says:

        Hey, if Weaver needs a guy like Murray to hold his stick for him, I’m thinking Bergevin got fleeced on that trade.

        • Forum Dog says:

          lol – I was thinking of one of the highlights I saw from last night’s game where Murray broke his twig on the end-boards, then dropped the stick that someone tried to hand to him, and while he’s fumbling around trying to pick it up a pass comes across and one of the Ducks fires an uncontested one-timer at Tokarski. Probably for the best, since Tokarski saw it all the way, but it was funny/awkward moment for Dooglas.

          Good mix though. Weaver is tough and mobile, and Murray is tough and immobile. Breakout passes could be hard to come by though….wingers will need to set up along the boards.

    • johnnylarue says:

      I want to give you five dollars for each of those wonderfully inane nicknames.

    • Mattyleg says:

      Nice!
      Good to see The Great Purnelski lined up with Jerry T.
      Not surprised to see Stand Andrei Deliver and his bud Sgt. Sergei, but I’m very pleased with the Weaves – The Doug Less Murrster together.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

  38. SmartDog says:

    A thought about Tokarski. He played well, a little jumpy but some goalies are like that. But here’s the thought: he’s got this “deer in the headlights” look that makes you think he’s a kid. Doesn’t look tough, but in most situations last night he looked good – very solid.

    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • johnnylarue says:

      He looks about 12 or 13 with a baseball cap on. I think he’s one of those guys people will still be calling ‘kid’ when he’s 30.

  39. Strummer says:

    Getting hot at the right time and having premier goaltending is the key for a long playoff run.

    2010- Habs and Flyers tied for 7th place and they make conference final with Flyers advancing

    2012- Kings finish 8th and win the Cup.

    The addition of Vanek goes a long way here. If some of the underachievers can find their games now a deep run is a reasonable expectation for this team considering how open it is in the East.

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

  40. SmartDog says:

    Anyone know how Bozon is?
    I’m assuming that this news happened days ago and he’s still with us this is good news.
    I hope for the kid’s family he is okay – and for us and him that we get to see him play in a CH.

    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

  41. Mattyleg says:

    Looking forward to seeing V-Love play tonight!

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  42. CHicoHab says:

    I’m sure we can move someone we don’t need to get a 2nd pick back.

  43. The Jackal says:

    I love the enthusiasm and positive vibes on here guys, but don’t flush em down the toilet when we lose a game or blow a lead.

    The East is indeed wide open and I think we can win a few rounds. Pittsburg is the only team I am afraid of because of all their firepower but as they say, you gotta play the games for a reason.

  44. Sportfan says:

    So i saw on the Habs FB page Vanek-Plek-Chucky or other way around for the wing. Isn’t Vanek better on the LW -_- not the RW?

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  45. HabinBurlington says:

    So the Wings are now shutting Datsyuk down for 3 weeks. Have to wonder how much playing those games in Olympics did further damage. A few teams including ourselves have paid quite a price for that Olympic break.

    • habsfan0 says:

      The Islanders paid the steepest price.
      And the Habs are the beneficiaries.

    • krob1000 says:

      Habs lose Price, ISles Tavares, Wings Datsyuk/Zetterberg, NYR -Zucarello, Van ….some costly injuries…timing is what sucks with OLympics….hve to break up a season at important time….I bet Canada or World cup route brought back and done in summer instead.

      • joewindsor habfan says:

        Actually Datsyuk, Zetterberg and to some extent Price were all injured prior to the Olympic Break. They opted to play through it for the love of their respected countries thus taking themselves out for their employers.

    • Gerry H says:

      Ed Snyder’s argument for taking a pass on Korea ’18 is gonna find support in Detroit, Brooklyn and Tampa, at the very least.

  46. Big Buffy Boat Club says:

    Are these lines accurate? Normally a good place to get the goods, but not sure how they know this?

    ———————————————————————————-
    “Crush your enemies, see them driven before you and hear the lamentations of the women.”

  47. Alex says:

    Well yesterday certainly was an exciting day all around. We traded for a true, number one line sniper who addresses 5 on 5 scoring, has a great history at dominating the rival Bruins and Leafs, gives us a real threat from down low on the power play making us able to not rely on the point men. Then last night we go into Anaheim and beat the first place team in a wild, wild game and shootout. Oh yeah, did I mention we had our third string goaltender in net?(Who played fantastic) It was a good day for sure, I would say.

    Last night we did get outplayed for significant stretches at a time, just look at the second period, however we also showed spurs of great team play. Once we add Vanek into our forward group I think we can solidify ourselves as one of the top teams in the mix in the eastern conference, with a healthy Carey Price of course. We hung in with LA, we beat the Ducks. These are the big, fast and skilled teams that I think are the toughest teams to play against in the league. San Jose will be another big test, but I am excited about our team.

    I look at the Eastern Conference and I think we have great depth compared to our competitors. We have the ability now to have two very threatening scoring lines. Two very capable goalscorers. We have good defensive forwards. We have some forwards who can grind and wear the other team down. I do have concerns about our defense, but I am optimistic. We have two defenseman who are among the best offensively. We have defensemen who are solid on the PK. We have a big, young defenseman who looks more and more like the NHL defenseman we all want him to become every game that passes. And to top it all off, I believe we have the best goaltender in the world.

    I am not fooling myself into thinking we are one of the best teams in the league, but I do believe that we have one of the best teams we have had in a long time, and as we know anything can happen in the playoffs. Pittsburgh has huge question marks on defense and in goal. Boston has injuries on defense, not to mention they haven’t beaten us in a long time. I believe we are right up there with the two power houses in the east. The west is a whole other monster, but we have seen we are capable to keep up with them, with Vanek and Price coming in I think it would be anyone’s game. I do believe St Louis are the Stanley Cup favourites, but I think we can make some noise in the east. And who knows, with some luck anything can happen. All I know is I am excited about our team.

    Go Habs Go!

  48. krob1000 says:

    Oh what amazing things happiness can do…
    Price is hurt
    Gorges broke his hand
    Bournvial return?
    PRust?
    team gave up 2 valuable prosepcts/picks
    MT giving cryptic message about Vanek rol
    Someone notplaying anymore
    Dd pairs needing to be shuffled
    Forward lines perhaps as well will get major overhaul…possibly pp

    Is specail plan to play Vanek on line 3 but then have him play with PLeks/gio/line on pp….maybe BRiere at point?
    A whole lot of questions but we are all so darn happy….I am refreshing every 15 seconds trying to get a lineup for tonight..I am too curious

  49. Mondou6 says:

    Vanek Prediction Time!

    Tonight: Goal or No Goal?

  50. Storman says:

    If your a Habs fan in Glendale for tonight’s game,,Just a few things to keep in mind,, Cars may not be driven in reverse in Glendale , as well as it is still illegal to ride your horse up the stairs of the county court house. You may give your donkey a bath in the tub, but it is illegal to let your donkey sleep in the bathtub,, A decree declares that anyone caught stealing soap must wash himself with it until it is all used up. and my all time favorite,,Women may not wear pants..

  51. Mavid says:

    nice that the game is at 9 pm a little more reasonable than last night..the 6 rounds of shootout did not help..

    Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

  52. Thomas Le Fan says:

    Good, it made no sense that Vanek was taking until Wednesday to join the team in Boston. These guys are pros, after all. Looking forward to seeing tonight’s match. Go Habs!

    Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      People were saying that will be his “Home” debut. That’s the team’s 1st game in Montreal after the trade yesterday.

      • Thomas Le Fan says:

        Initially, people were saying that’s when he’d join the team. I had to go do stuff so I may have missed the retractions. Is he still going to Minnesota? :)

        Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

  53. krob1000 says:

    So all we know is that MT has a “special plan” for Vanek…and that he is glad he can play LW and RW…and that he said he needed to talk to Vanek first before sharing anything publicly…what the heck could he be up to?
    What would he need to talk to Vanek about? vanek is a natrural LW…is the plan to play Vanek down the lineup but have him slot in for Gally on the first pp unit?
    If the plan is to play him LW wiht PLeks/Gio does that warrant this cryptic talk and a speaking of to Vanek first?

  54. Ian Cobb says:

    So! Who has seniority to ware the #26.??
    Vanek or Gorges??

  55. johnnylarue says:

    Y’all can trash Josh Gorges all you want, but speaking for myself, I’d be hard pressed to write a grocery list with a broken hand, let alone submit myself to battling in a corner for a loose puck with Corey Perry.

    Gorgie’s a mensch.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Nodding somewhat in recognition of Gorges.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I don’t think even his biggest critics have ever questioned his heart. It is that effort and drive that has gotten him a solid NHL career. I like Gorges, but think we overpaid somewhat, but he has great character and sometimes that is worth more than talent I suppose.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      Ya I figured he broke his thumbnail off on Saturday night when they showed him on the bench holding his bleeding thumb/hand. I was surprised he was even back on the ice that night!

      • HabinBurlington says:

        The first camera shot on the bench, looked like half his thumb was coming off. Couldn’t believe he finished that game, never mind play in the next two.

        • johnnylarue says:

          Then again, this is a guy who played, what, a couple of YEARS with no ligaments in his right knee? I suspect he uses morphine as a dairy substitute in his cereal.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Yah, clearly has a pretty high threshold for pain. I don’t think any Dman in the league gets run into the boards more than Josh either.

    • Thomas Le Fan says:

      He gets a lot of flack that he doesn’t deserve, that’s for true. Good player who’s maybe been asked to play a role that he’s not the best fit for. More Terry Harper than Jacques Laperrière.

      Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

    • D Man says:

      I like what Gorges brings to the Habs. No qualifying statements. Take that Scrotchie!

      You can’t be both a Habs and a Leafs fan

    • New says:

      Corey Perry is one mean player. It takes a pretty gutsy team to take a couple games from those guys.

  56. zephyr says:

    I’m hoping vanek bumps gio off pleks’s line. our 2nd line should have some size now.
    we’ll see 2nite.

  57. Steeltown Hab says:

    With Gorges out can we finally see Emelin on the right side?

    How much more of a disaster can he become before Therrien does something?

    I would love to see how Subban would be treated playing like that.
    ———————————

    Lars, PK, Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Emelin, Bournival, De La Rose – @J_Perez22

  58. Gerry H says:

    Folks, we have a well-managed team. I know the Habs are a step or two away from being a serious, consistent contender, but there is a certain je-ne-sais-quoi about the organization right now that has not been there in a very long time. Sure, they’re fielding a fairly competitive team with a solid, young core and, yes, there are some good prospects developing with promise. But it’s more than that.

    The backup ‘tender picked up for less than a song as our current backup’s contract is set to expire. The spare-part Dman picked up for a song. Both now shown to be prescient moves due to injuries. Scenarios considered and covered. The DD deal done fearlessly and, after an early season scare, now looking like a rock-solid bargain. The patient, flinty-eyed bargaining that landed the team one of the deadline’s biggest prizes for cheap, leaving much of the league scracthing their heads – or perhaps wishing that they’d been as careful with their in-season cap management as MB has been. The fact that management attention to the fullness and professionalism of the entire management team allowed so much of this work to be done while MB himself was largely out of action for family reasons.

    At the risk of sounding pretentious, mark my words: Montreal will no longer be a B or C-list destination for star players. High taxes or not, “home team discount” will not sound like a non sequitur in reference to Montreal. Contract talks with the Markovs and Subbans of the world will no longer seem like they are being conducted over a table tilted perilously in the player’s direction. For the first time in eons, le CH has cred.

    The future is looking very, very bright.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Yesterday Bergevin sent a message to his players that he believes in them and will do all he can to support them. I can’t remember the last time our GM sent such a message. We as fans are right to be optimistic of the teams future.

      • krob1000 says:

        The irony is last year when they did nothing people tried to spin as that was a “vote of confidence ” in the group. This gives the core guys of the team a legit shot to compete….some may not be around anymore and the window starts now.

  59. Ian Cobb says:

    We now have depth and a 50–50 chance to bring the cup home to the Bell Center. NO! I am not dreaming in Technicolor, we have a shot!
    Once Price, Prust & Gorges are healthy, and we do not have any major injuries to key players, we have a legit shot my friends!!

    • joeybarrie says:

      We have a shot, but it isn’t 50-50.
      15-85 I’d say.

      50-50 to make the conf finals
      40-60 to win
      and 30-70 to win from there.

      and that’s generous I’d say.

      but we have a shot, and signing Vanek long term would be a huge step for us. I’d say 50-50 to complete for the cup in the next 5 seasons.

  60. 2014 Norris Trophy winner, "Dan Hamhuis"! says:

    Okay enough of all the Vanek love. How come we didn’t trade for Chuck Norris?

  61. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    I am dying to see how Pleks does now that he has finally been given a great winger to play with. Also the heat is on MT now that MB has made a major move. If he wants an extension, he needs to get this team far in the playoffs.

  62. 09habs100 says:

    Finally! Habs are back in Phoenix :) If you hear some random screaming, cheering and hollering by a guy when they announce Vanek and Weaver… that’ll be me!

    Last time Habs came to town we found them at the hotel down the road…got my wife’s jersey signed by over a dozen players – and my Patches jersey as well. Here’s hoping we can get as lucky tonight!

  63. Danno says:

    Who will start in nets tonight for the Habs?

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  64. Da Hema says:

    A colleague’s 16 year-old son died within hours of contracting meningitis. A nasty, terrible infection. My thoughts and prayers are with the Bozon family.

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      I don’t even like thinking about it. When I was in minor hockey a player a divi on ahead of me lost a battle with the infection. It’s interesting because he still seems older than me (currently 33) and he was in Pee Wee when he passed.

      ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  65. HabinBurlington says:

    Don’t like the decision by NHL to rescind penalty to New Jersey. This is actually the second favour the NHL has given to New Jersey since the penalty was first handed out. The first was the complete BS of “letting” Kovalchuk out from the contract, BS, I wouldn’t be surprised if that fraudulent owner in New Jersey actually requested Kovalchuk take his stick and go home to Russia to get out from under the contract. Ownership was in the middle of a huge debt problem unable to pay down initial payments after just have restructuring the debt load of the Devils.

    Now they also don’t have to rescind a first round pick. The part that sticks in my craw is we all knew they should have rescinded already when they had a poor draft position. It showed then, that the NHL was already starting to change its position.

    Perhaps Vancouver could have convinced Luongo to go to the KHL for a year to get out of their contract? Nope the story wouldn’t have worked, the NHL wouldn’t have bought it, so Vancouver is stuck with a crap contract, but New Jersey are allowed to get out of theirs, with no penalty.

    Bettman has zero concern for fairness, his interests are not about the game being played fairly, his only concerns are about his Rumple Stiltskin deals with all his owners keeping him firmly in charge.

    • Mattyleg says:

      I wonder how many other NHL franchises have as much ‘leverage’ behind them as one in New Jersey does…

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • D Mex says:

      If this doesn’t revive questions about Buttman’s disdain for CDN franchises, and taking them – and their solid fan support – for granted, I’ll be surprised.

      I am reminded of the righteous recognition the little fart received from Vancouver fans as he prepared to present the Cup to Colon Campbell, Jeremy Jacobs & Co.

      The visual of his head bobbling and wrist twisting while reciting his ‘ street cred ‘ refrain of ” our game ” will always turn my stomach. Yucch !

      ALWAYS Habs -
      D Mex

  66. Luke says:

    My turn for lines (Though I’ve seen this combo already, I know them all personally).

    Maxy – Davey – Gally
    Vaneky – Plecky – Gio-y
    Chucky – Ellery – Briere-y
    Bourquey – Whitey – Wheezy

    (Prustie slots in for Wheezy when healthy).

  67. jimmy shaker says:

    Who’s cheering for our former tender halak tonight as the caps square off vs the cubs tonight?

    Shaker out!

  68. Lafleurguy says:

    Desharnais used a high-skill move to score on the shoot-out. Four Ducks and the Habs swash-buckling sniper were streaking toward the Waterfowls net, and David threads a perfect pass onto the taped part of Max s stick. Shot, goal! Max could have had a couple more. It took until the final play of the game before a Hab sheathed his sword. General Markie shoots….scores!

  69. Hobie Hansen says:

    Mitch Melnick ‏@HunterZThompson 2m

    According to @SergioMomesso36 on site in Phoenix @T_Vanek26 says he feels best at LW.


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