Vinny to Montreal; A Realistic Scenario for the First Time Ever

Are we being toyed with?

Two rumored deals on the table for Vinny Lecavalier. The first one includes Christopher Higgins, Tomas Plekanec, P.K. Subban and a draft pick, for Lecavalier, and possibly Jussi Jokinen, Paul Ranger, or both. The second has Robert Lang, Chris Higgins, Ryan O’Byrne, and Kyle Chipchura, and a 2010 1st round pick, for Vinny, and once again, Jussi Jokinen, and/or Paul Ranger.

Vincent Lecavalier is signed for $85 million over the next 11 years. The talk of him coming to Montreal has been ongoing since he entered the league. Despite the obvious implications on the salary cap given the financial crisis, and the potential fall of the Canadian dollar over the next couple of years, these talks won’t die down for two reasons:

1. Tampa Bay is an absolute mess, and even Vinny can see that, whether he signed an 11-year extension to stick around, or not.

2. The Canadiens have the depth to make this trade happen. If there were ever a player to sacrifice for, Vinny would be it.

Unless Vinny outright comes out to the media, or has a representative force the team into announcing publicly that he wants no part of Montreal, these talks, and rumors of these talks, are going to prevail.

Interesting timing for all of this to come out with Bob Gainey set to address the media regarding his team, for the first time all season. Gainey’s intent is to give a report card on the Canadiens successes and shortcomings thus far at noon in Brossard, but it’s clear that Montrealers, and the press have interest in two things, and two things only:

1. Is there truly fire behind the smoke, as Darren Dreger claims there is regarding Lecavalier to Montreal?

2. Is Gainey actively shopping for a 4th defenseman as it’s been suggested several times since the beginning of the season?

Everyone may be dissatisfied with the answers, and some will certainly infer things from those answers that will in all likelihood be quite vague. 

Is it worth it to ship out the packages discussed above?

Even if you factor in the cap, and you’re worried about all the free agents this summer, and even more worried about next summer when Carey Price is up for big money; even if you factor in that this team was built on the concept of balance and depth; even if you factor in the price to pay in terms of the package of players, and then of course absorbing a major salary for the next 11 years…


We’re talking about a Stanley Cup winner, who’s still very much in his prime. He is a veteran leader despite his youth, and one of the ten best players in the National Hockey League.

It’s all about whether he’d embrace the pressure of being the go-to guy in his hometown, where the pressure on French-Canadian stars is almost unparalleled in any other sport given that he’d be coming to a team that was already considered a contender before his arrival.

The trade deadline is 7 weeks away, and the banter isn’t likely to subside.

You can come up with as many reasons as you can think of for why Vinny to Montreal is a bad idea, but you know you’ll celebrate like it’s New Year’s Eve if he lands in Montreal for the packages being discussed.

People will be quick to dismiss these rumors, but for the first time since Lecavalier’s been in the league, the circumstances are ripe for his possible exodus to Montreal.

The question is, do you believe?  



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