Will 2015 be the year Habs end Stanley Cup drought?

It has been 21 years – and counting – since the Canadiens last won the Stanley Cup.

They came within two wins of making it to the Stanley Cup final last season, losing the Eastern Conference final to the New York Rangers in six games, so the expectations will be high for Habs fans heading into the 2014-15 campaign.

The Canadiens were the focus of the NHL.com 30 Teams in 30 Days feature series on Aug. 21, with Arpon Basu, the managing director of LNH.com, posing five questions heading into the new season:

1. Who will fill the leadership void?

2. Who will grab the available spot among the top nine forwards?

3. What will be the impact of Andrei Markov and P.K. Subban playing together full time?

4. Who will claim the sixth defence spot?

5. Will the power play improve?

“I like the progression of our team, I like the direction our team is taking,” coach Michel Therrien says in the NHL.com feature package. “We had an enormous challenge when we arrived here two years ago, but I like the commitment and the way things have gone so far. But we haven’t reached the goal yet.”

Will 2015 be the year?

(Photo by John Mahoney/The Gazette)

Near miss leads to greater expectations for Canadiens, NHL.com

 

 

 

 

662 Comments

  1. Lagerhab says:

    I really hope they work Galchenyuk in at centre this year. The focus down the middle going forward should be Galchenyuk, Eller and Plecky in that order. I like Davy and as mentioned by Ronn below he is great during the regular season but I can’t see him going up against the big centres in the West during the playoffs.

    Part of the problem is Patches relationship with Davy, they are great together and produce results so you can understand why Max feels this way, but I get the sense that he would be put out if they tried Chucky at centre on his line. This annoys me a little.

    When some of the younger prospects like DelaRose and Sherbek come in, it would be nice to have Galchenyuk as an established Centre. Of course this would involve growing pains.

    • shiram says:

      Eller would have to do a lot more to over take Plekanec, as he does not face as tough opposition, does not contribute as much offense and has not shown much consistency.

      I think he can certainly improve, and he’s shown glimpse, but people seem to focus on those and forget the miserable 60 or so games he played in the regular season.

      He scored 16 goals in a season, that’s a career high.
      He needs to show more to get more from the coaches.

      And it’s the same with Chucky, he needs to show he can be responsible defensively and pick up more scoring before he’s anointed first line C.

      I have more hopes of Chucky doing it, he’s still very young, and as shows great promise.
      I think Eller can improve too, but the ceiling is much lower.

      • Lagerhab says:

        I don’t disagree with your assessment, and yes right now Plecky is ahead of Eller and certainly Davy is ahead of Galchenyuk at the centre position, but looking ahead I see this changing.

        I would like to see more opportunities given to Chucky and Lars at the centre position, be it more ice time or better wingers to see what happens. As I mentioned this would involve some growing pains.

        The playoff Eller is tantalizing! But yes the 60 or so games during the regular season have to look more like the “Playoff Eller” in order for Eller to usurp Plecky from the #2 Spot.

  2. Lafleurguy says:

    Wouldn’t it be cool if one or more of the forwards could carry the puck like Subbie does? Pleks comes close. Subbie is akin to Crosby in this skill.

  3. AliHaba says:

    Something that has crossed my mind since PK signed his contract is the pressure that it takes off players like Price, Markov, and Pacioretty. Like it or not, PK is the face of the franchise now and all the other stars can go about their duties well without question. Sure they’ll still be well recognized wherever they go but the weight of the pressure will be mostly on PK’s broad shoulders.

    • Cal says:

      I agree. PK is exactly the personality to do that.

    • Lagerhab says:

      No so sure in Montreal, If Price, Patches or Markov play poorly, they’ll hear about it from the fans and media, but I agree that most of the pressure will be on PK and I believe he is up to the task!

    • habstrinifan says:

      Somewhat true. But if the team loses (wouldnt really matter if they are playing badly although that may go hand in hand), then the fans will get on their own respective whipping boys.

      P.K of course will garner the most (he has always been the focus) and it would be tied into his contract moreso now… but Price, Pacs, DD, Bourque will all have their usual critics pointing them out.

      “Protest Rogers blackout of Habs game…sign at:

      https://www.ipetitions.com/petition/no-habs-blackout-rds.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Now that would be an interesting poll question

      Who is the face of the Habs franchise?

      BEFORE the season starts, my vote would see Carey Price a slight cut above the rest, with PK close behind…that is , before the season starts.

  4. shiram says:

    Anyone else amused by the Sharks “… reestablish the hierarchy and the culture in the organization” and taking the letters from Thornton and Marleau?

    Marleau seems to be taking the high road, and saying his work ethic and play will have him get a letter back, he’s already had the C taken from him before, so maybe it’s less of a big deal for him.

    Thornton seems to be taking it less easily.
    And this when both of them are starting new contracts for 3 years.

    It seems to me like the wrong thing to focus on, as leaders are leaders even without a letter on their jerseys, but it certainly can have a negative effect when taking the letter away.

    Joe seems like a good guy, I really liked his coming to the defense of Hertl when reporters were harping on him for his 4 goals celebration, and Thornton’s play still seems to be of a very high caliber.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Didn’t Thornton and Marleau both accept less than market value to stay with the team?

      —–

      ¯\(°_o)/¯

      • shiram says:

        Marleau has a 6.66 million cap hit, and Big Joe 6.75.

        With the rising cap, and new CBA structure, it could be said they did take a discount.

        Both have No movement clauses.

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Maybe it’s stay in the San Jose area, and the team is 1B.

        Thornton-35 years old-3 years/$20.25M + a NMC
        Marleau – 35 next month 3years/$20M +a NMC

    • Cal says:

      Re-signing both Marleau and Thornton last season was, imo, a bad move. The term is bad, too. One at least needed to move on. Not doing that was bad news for the Sharks.

      • shiram says:

        The NMC are the bad part, a signed player is of better value than just his rights, and both I believe can still play and bring value for the dollar on their deals, even on the third year.

        I always liked Marleau, would love him in Montreal.

        That said, if we can swing a trade of DD and Moen for Thornton… ;)

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I have always liked Thornton and I find it curious how he is always the one taking the brunt of the blame in San Jose and in Boston. Perhaps some of the criticism is fair, but seems to me he gets a bit too much of the blame.

  5. DipsyDoodler says:

    Could the Nordiques win a cup before the Habs?

    The owners of the Florida Panthers realize they cannot make it
    in Florida. The clue is that they say they are committed to making it work in Florida. That’s owner-speak for “I really like you but…”.

    The Tankmeister General Dale Talon has done a great job of accumulating high draft picks. They will be a lottery team again this year and by the time this buffoon gets canned they might be (1) a force and (2) playing in Quebec City.

    Something to worry about on this day.
    —–

    ¯\(°_o)/¯

  6. Mavid ® says:

    Sorry folks it’s 47 I am blaming it on those back pain pills I took last night. Am I fired yet?

    On another note I really don’t like having to scroll all the way to the bottom to post..

    Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Have you ever tried acupuncture?
      It’s been around for over a couple of thousand years.

      ” A review for the American Pain Society/American College of Physicians from 2007 found fair evidence that acupuncture is effective for chronic low back pain.”

      …but don’t expect Big Pharma to give it glowing reviews.
      They rather you take monster profit chemical pills.

      • Mavid ® says:

        No I have not tried anything yet as it’s just started to be really bad the last few days. I took an over the counter back pain pill. If it keeps up I may have to go and see the doc. I am pretty open to anything that does not involve pills so I may give it a whirl when the time comes, thanks for the suggestion

        Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

    • Lafleurguy says:

      You were “GroundHogDayed” by your meds. Or….you long for the days of the Briere era.

    • Cal says:

      Agree. Posts should be enabled to be submitted at the top of the page, just below the story and the links.

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      Stéphan Lebeau.

  7. rhino514 says:

    As 24 dogs points out, the Vane trade was invaluable in that he made the other players in the lineup better. The team became a overnight a force to be reckoned with offensively. Even though he didn´t do great in the plqyoffs, he took attention off of guys like Bourque and Eller who blossomed.
    This is invaluable because if we hadn´t been able to see this dyanamic, we would all be questioning the worth of some of our forwards, and may have even dealt them away for relatively little value.
    As it is we know we have some capable forwards on our team who do well when they are not the focus of the opponent. Rather than being an inept team offensively, we are in fact one good scorer away from being an offensively threatening team.
    It´s just kind of heart-breaking that after having that type of force, we are once again in a similar boat.
    Parenteau should more than offset Gionta´s goals, but then we are counting on one of Bournival, Sekac, or Andrighetto, all unproven prospects/rookies who are not really grad A prospects, to contribute offensively. De La Rose is young and almost assuredly not ready yet.
    If we had been able to nail down Subban at around eight million, we could well have the space for at least a Vanek-like trade deadline acquisition. This is probably tougher to do now, unless we can mitigate Budaj´s and/or Moen´s contracts in some way.
    I am not so much worried about one of the rookies not contributing offensively, but am more concerned with the defensive liabilities the ninth forward and Parenteau will expose, having lost Gionta´s responsible game. To negate this I fear we need more goals from those two sources than we can realistically expect.

  8. Paz says:

    What if Galchenyuk could actually move to the right wing even though he shoots left?
    Like Eric Cole, he could be added to the right side next to Desharnais and Max, and that could be an explosive offensive line.
    This keeps Max and DD together, while adding firepower to their right side.
    This opens a spot on the left side next to Plekanec for Sekac.

    Isn’t it worth a try?

    • Luke says:

      Oh yah.
      Though, I’d much rather see Max play his off wing on that line as Galchenyuk moves the puck much better than Max does.

    • Phil C says:

      I would worry about Galchenyuk getting crunched on his off wing. You end up trying to awkwardly take the puck off the boards, exposing your back to the defenders. I think it’s okay for big robust players who can take the abuse like Cole, Ovechkin, or even Bourque, but Galchenyuk has too much potential to risk injury.

      I wonder if they should try DD on the wing like Martin St. Louis and be a playmaking winger. He might look good next to Plekanec who has a pretty good shot.

      • Paz says:

        There are ways forwards defend themselves against that play. We need to get Galchenyuk with Max, one way or another, so if it means moving Desharnais to the wing then lets give it a try.

        I have heard so much about Galchenyuk not being good enough defensively or on face offs to play center, I figured I would offer a compromise which gets him on the line with our number one forward, Max.

        That’s what I want. Max and Galchenyuk on the same line.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          You motives are 100% correct IMO, Max is our best scorer, and Alex has the talent to be our best play making forward, and heck could also become quite the goal scorer.

          I think with the glimpses of a talented Vanek on that line, it had to have shown MB what he could have with Max and Alex together.

    • Cal says:

      I want to see Chucky on the RW half wall during the PP, 1st or 2nd wave.
      Full time RW? Not so certain of that, but that is one talented kid, so I don’t see it being a detriment to him.

    • Loop_Garoo says:

      I think we need to see if Sekac can play or is ready for the NHL first before we worry to much about where he fits.

  9. on2ndthought says:

    In terms of Emelin. I actually forsee a tiny step back at the season’s start as he re-adjust to his natural side. My guess is halfway through the year (if all stay healthy) he takes over top pairing with Subban and they play 30 minutes per game.

    Don’t look for points, he has all of Hal Gill’s offensive instincts, but he can be Subban’s stay at home rock. This guy switched leagues and sides at the same time and still managed to play average D with above average physicality. I’m looking forward to seeing him on his natural side so he can make the easy turn on a forward trying to blow by him along the boards.

    “a cannonading drive”

    • Kooch7800 says:

      I am not sure he can take a step back from last season. He wasn’t great for the vast majority of the season. I think he will be just fine as he is training not rehabbing this off season and Gilbert is a decent D man to play with.

      I think we might actually be shocked a bit by that pairing being better than expected

  10. theflukester says:

    Hahahaha, have to say that headline sure made me chuckle. So much so my coffee began coming out of my nose. Gotta love the habs media. I don’t even think there is anything else worth saying at this point but thanks for the laugh.

    Play every game as if it is your last one. Guy Lafleur

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Nothing wrong with having a morning chuckle

      Let’s ask the question another way.
      To win the Cup, a team has to first win its Conference.

      IF Carey Price stays healthy, and the Habs don’t suffer any terrible long term injuries to its key guys, please name me a team in the East that would have a distinct advantage against the Habs in a playoff series.
      Boston? Pittsburgh? A depleted Rangers? Tampa? Philly?
      Follow that up with a few reasons as to why?

      • Cal says:

        Since the advent of all these different blogs, I am finding more and more fans who expect the worst while hoping for the best. After 21 seasons of futility, I don’t blame them. It’s a way of bullet proofing oneself against inevitable losses and the lows that go with that.

        • Maritime Ronn says:

          Cal
          You have to admit the habs are moving in the right direction.
          When was the last time Habs fans could say they could beat anyone in the east without some fluke 2010 style performance?

          • Cal says:

            Definitely, Ronn. I was simply noting how many fans seem to not want to be emotionally involved with their teams any more. It’s as if being thick-skinned about your chosen team is a bad thing if they fail to perform.
            As for the Habs, I am expecting a successful season leading to another playoff run. I’d love to see the Habs go to the SCF.

  11. CJ says:

    Good morning.

    In my humble opinion, trying to pick where a team is going to finish in a league rife with parity is no easy task. Further, I believe the issue magnified in the East, where we have recently seen teams move from 14th and 15th place (Canadiens and Blue Jackets) to the playoffs within two years (note, Habs qualified in both seasons). Would it shock me if the Panthers, Senators and Islanders bumped the Penguins, Red Wings and Flyers, no. And, for the record, I am saying that with a straight face.

    Over an 82 game season, 3-5 wins can represent the difference between being a playoff team and entering the draft lottery.

    As Bergevin said, all teams reset at the beginning of the season and last year’s success will have no bearing on future results. If you have one of the top three goalies in the league, playing 60-70 games a season, without injuries, you are going to have a better than average chance of taking a step forward. That, IMO, is the value attached to Carey Price. Now, he can’t score goals – at least he hasn’t to this point – so he will need support, but he gives us a chance to win every night.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      You are 100% correct CJ. If you remember as well the year the habs got Chucky our shootout record was pathetic. We win 4 or so more of the shoutouts and we are middle of the pack and on the hunt for the playoffs

    • In my humble opinion, trying to pick where a team is going to finish in a league rife with parity is no easy task.

      It’s very easy, watch this. The 2014-15 Montreal Canadiens will finish 2nd in their conference this season…………SEE? :) Another sure way to predict is to listen to TSN and Sportsnet, whichever they predict, move up 6 places.

      How did you like my Island? Wasn’t the weather amazing? In my 43 years on this planet, I have never seen PEI so hot. We left a couple days before you got there. One of the nicest summers we ever had.

      My last meal—https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10204487296201022&set=a.10200910133854199.1073741825.1190868887&type=1&theater

      Shane Oliver
      @sholi2000
      http://www.sholi2000.com
      A Little fun during the Intermission
      >

      • CJ says:

        Fair point Shane, you got me there!

        On an aside, we very much enjoyed our time in PEI. It was a long drive with two little boys, but it was a splendid vacation. I would not hesitate to recommend PEI to anyone. We were in the Murray Island area, so we got to enjoy dinners at Point Prim (Chowder House) and really liked Windows on the Water in Montague. Oh, and the Montague bakery was divine! I had the pleasure of meeting a fellow HIO member Kevin, who was just a wonderful person. Regrettably, I was unable to connect with others, who I had hoped to have the pleasure of meeting.

        Again, thank you for asking. I am truly blessed. Cheers, CJ

  12. Marc10 says:

    The Chelios troll guy earlier in this thread argued the Rangers were smoked by the Kings. That series was a lot closer than a lot people give it credit for. The Kings gave up a ton of breakaways and the Rangers feed time and again to put them away. The margin behind defeat and victory is very thin.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      You’re right
      First 2 games went to OT.
      Third game was a 3-0 loss Rangers let down, and Game 4 was another 1 goal game.
      J. Quick was great when he had to be.
      Very underrated NHL goalie.

      • 123456 says:

        reminds me of the habs first round victory…. 3 W’s were by a single goal. were the habs better – YES…. did they dominate at times – YES…. but didn’t blow tampa (and their inferior goalie) out of the water.

  13. Maritime Ronn says:

    @ 24 Cups

    Do the Habs really need 2 gunslingers – or especially one on the right side as you suggest?

    Looking at the Cup model LA Kings last year, they did not have a single 30 goal scorer, and only 2 players scored more than 19 goals – that being “Centers” Kopitar (29) Carter (27), then it fell off to Justin Williams with 19 goals.

    Circling back to the big picture, Price is a Top 3 goalie in the East.
    The Habs have a very good Top 6 Dman unit in the East.

    From here, and looking at the LA model, the Habs weakness – thinking playoff hockey/Cup chances and not the season, lies in the weakness at the Top 6 Center position as everything starts from there.

    That is where the gunslinger is needed.
    A team cannot win a Cup when one of its Top 6 centers that also plays 1st unit PP, scores 1 goal +1 empty net goal in 17 playoff games.

    The Kings? Carter (10 goals) Kopitar (5 goals) had a combined 51 points in 26 playoff games.

    In the playoffs, Strength-size- ability to protect the puck-goal scoring ability-getting to the net….that is the type of Top 6 center that is needed for a Cup win.
    Cup winning History always showed strength down the middle

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Hiya Ron. I guess that’s why I was so anxious to see Galchenyuk put at center last season. Am I wrong to begin to think that that ship has sailed and Galchenyuk will now be left at wing for his career?

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Jim

        There’s nothing wrong with ‘regular season’ Desharnais, but ‘playoff’ Desharnais is a different story being used as Top 6 and 1st unit PP.

        As for Galchunyuk, he has to seize the opportunity IF presented to him

        I don’t know what happened after this – (room politics? Max?), but it never happened.

        November 04 2013
        Canadiens fans clamouring to see Alex Galchenyuk at centre will get their wish Tuesday…

        Coach Michel Therrien turned to Galchenyuk in the third period, putting him between Max Pacioretty and Brendan Gallagher…the trio were on the ice for the Habs’ power-play goal in the third and Therrien liked what he saw.

        “The positive (in this game) is the adjustment we made with Galchenyuk playing centre with Pacioretty and Gallagher,” Therrien said.

        “It’s something we’ve been thinking about and we decided to do it in the third period and I was really pleased.
        *This is an experiment that we’re going to repeat again.

        Was never repeated….

        • CJ says:

          He started one game at centre last season. ONE GAME. On the road, against the Blues.

          Can you imagine putting a new sound system inside your car, and only turning it on once? You liked how it sounded and told your buddies that you would turn it on again, but never did. Maybe it’s for fear that the wiring system will fail, or the electrical will catch fire. I don’t know. Personally, if/when I get something new, I like to try it to see how it performs. Yes, I get that hockey (professional sports) is a far cry from car stereos, but this rings true – you will never know what you have, unless you try it.

          • 123456 says:

            OR if the sound system example is not up your alley – having that hot girlfriend and only once you have the opportunity…. oh wait – prob should not be going there…

      • Habs_101 says:

        He is 20 years old. He is highly UNLIKELY to play wing for his career, in all likelihood this will be a transition year where he gets limited center time (ala Seguin in his 3rd season) so that next year he can step in full time.

        GO HABS GO!

      • Habs_101 says:

        The bigger issue is the DD and Eller cannot play wing, while Galchenyuk is versatile enough to be effective at both, therefore he ends up learning the ropes on LW waiting for his time at C

        GO HABS GO!

    • CJ says:

      Hammer meet nail. Our weakness falls directly upon the centre ice position. We are still, at best, a 2, 2B, 3 and 4 centre team. Until this composition changes, we won’t take the next step forward. If the goal is to be among the elite, if the goal is to win a Stanley Cup, than we will need to address this deficiency going forward.

      Rome wasn’t built in a day though. Change takes time and we will need to remain patient.

      • Lagerhab says:

        I couldn’t agree more, one of the problems is Patches relationship with DD. While I like DD, we need to upgrade the number 1 centre. The only way I see Chucky getting a chance at centre on the top line is if DD is hurt otherwise Patch will be put out without Davy and this kind of annoys me.

        The focus down the middle should be Chucky, Eller and Pleky in that order, to me this is the future. Why not try it sooner rather than later and live with the growing pains so that when the younger prospects like Dela Rose and Sherbek (spelling?)arrive we’ll be set at the centre position?

    • 24 Cups says:

      Point well taken, Ronn.

      If Galchenyuk ever becomes as good as Kopitar then the team will indeed have two top flight talents up front.

      I figure that right now Price is top four in the entire NHL. To me, he’s the face of the franchise more than any skater.

      Fans hate Williams for the Koivu incident but this guy is a clutch playoff performer. He scores when the team needs it the most. That’s why I have a Dick Duff Hab jersey. Having a guy like that means a lot to a team and maybe Gallagher fits that bill or will at some point down the road.

      24 Cups

    • on2ndthought says:

      I don’t think the secret to success is following another team’s model. It is in drafting and developing the best players (and sometimes the best players to fill a need) and then designing a system around those players (not trying to make your players something they are not).

      Our top line works because Gally digs out pucks along the boards, passes to DD and heads for the net. He can’t really screen a goalie, but he sure can create havoc. DD can patiently wait for Max to find a shooting lane and thread the pass through. Max doesn’t need a screened goalie because he is one of maybe 10 players in the league who regularly get a challenging shot off quickly. Now, there are 7 other skaters on the ice complicating this picture, but that is the skill set of our top line. Enjoy it.

      DD is a #1 center in the NHL, just like Kopitar, at half the cost, so he is not supposed to bring the same package as Kopitar. LA is a very tough team to play against, but they’ll be saying the same thing about Montreal’s speed/skill combo when Stanley comes home.

      “a cannonading drive”

      • CJ says:

        Drafting and developing, along with shrewd trades is the Kings model. It appears to be our model too. Heck, it should be everyone’s model. Our top line worked in the regular season. Unfortunately the game changes in the post season and every inch of ice is contested. Along with the referees changing the manner in which the game is policed, and you need guys who can pull through in this challenging environment.

        Lastly, we looked slow and void of skill against the Rangers. If speed is our game, then we really need to take it up a notch. I am not sure what our identity will be this season. I believe we are in transition, moving away from an older (almost oldest), smaller (see smallest) team, to a younger, bigger, group, combining skill and size.

        I like the direction we are headed in.

        • B says:

          The Kings really seemed to turn the corner when they brought Darryl Sutter in as coach.

          –Go Habs Go!–

          • on2ndthought says:

            tough, unflappable, shows confidence in his plan no matter the situation. he’s a good’un

            “a cannonading drive”

          • B says:

            I remember 2004 when he took a 6th place Calgary team (that finished only 5 points ahead of 9th place Edmonton) on a play run knocking off the top 3 teams in the West before taking the top team from the East to 7 games in the Stanley cup final. The guy is a winner. As a side note, he scored 40 goals as an NHL rookie.

            –Go Habs Go!–

        • on2ndthought says:

          Top line in playoffs: 17 games, 15 goals, 30 points, +3

          The Rangers were tough in the playoffs, and we didn’t (couldn’t?) adjust to their kami kaze offensive style at the beginning of the series. Winning game 5 was huge, and we went into MSG with a will to win. Give them credit, they played a perfect game 6 and beat us 1-0. If we go home with a 2-1 OT win instead, that series is ours. That game more than any, exposed our fatigue from the Boston series and how it had drained Gionta especially of all his offensive acumen. You know MB wanted to sign him and drop him to a third line defensive, veteran presence role.

          “a cannonading drive”

          • Maritime Ronn says:

            The Boston series was the Habs Cup last year.
            Great learning experience where concentration and stamina is needed to go all the way

  14. Habfan10912 says:

    Morning Group! Good points by 24 this morning both in regards to Emelin and about the possibility of 5 rookies playing important roles for the Habs this season. In fact he goes on to say it could be a transition year for the Habs.

    Good stuff and very helpful to help ease through the hockeyless summer months. I’d love to hear more thoughts on Emelin. I must admit I was disappointed in him last season. Yes, I know he was coming off a horrific knee injury.

    When we attended last seasons Summit and took a tour of the Bell Centre, Burly and I struck up a conversation with some of the Bell Centre staff and they raved about how he (Emelin) was working hard and at how great he looked.

    This got me excited about his return which came a few games later. I thought his play was average at best and his playoff performance wasn’t much better.

    Hopefully it was just hangover stuff from his injury and we’ll see an improving Emelin this season. I should add that to my “IF” list for the Habs to reach the Cup.

    CHeers all!

    • Luke says:

      I can’t come up with 5 rookies filling full time roles.

      I’m assuming that Tinordi/Beaulieu are considered rookies & Sekac, of course. But I think only one of Tinordi or Beaulieu will be full time.

      But after that I’m stumped. Tokarski, maybe?

      I think only Beaulieu and Sekac will be the only rookies who play a prominent role to start the season, and I suspect Sekac will underwhelm. (I hope not, but spidey-senses are tingling…)

      Maybe it’s early and I just need another coffee…

      • Habfan10912 says:

        I aggree. I think (Hope) both Tinordi and Beaulieu make the club and Sekac sticks as well. Perhaps Steve was adding Pateryn along with Tokarski or some other rookie surprise ie Bournival last season.

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Morning Jim

        Barring pre-season injuries, the post above has it pretty much covered

      • 24 Cups says:

        I was listing Bournival in that group of five although he’s technically not a rookie.

        24 Cups

        • Luke says:

          ahh… ok, gotcha.

          Poor Bourney. I really like his game, but it looks like he (and Moener) may be the odd man out to start the season.

          • 24 Cups says:

            Great insurance for when Prust gets hurt.

            People rag on Moen but he plays both flanks and kills penalties. Bournival can also play centre. These two “subs” are a lot better than some of the 4th liners we have had to endure the past ten years. I still cringe at the thought of Weber on RW.

            24 Cups

          • Luke says:

            Indeed!! It’s been quite a while since I could look at the roster to start the season and see a nice balance with no one sticking out like a sore thumb…

            As for Moen, he’s a decent piece. He’s a bottom roster guy who understands his role. nice insurance piece. basically, playing the Ryan White role this year, I suspect.
            His salary spooks people more than his play does, I think.

          • Maritime Ronn says:

            How quickly we forget Petteri Nokelainen and Aaron Palushaj

  15. Habfan17 says:

    @ CJ

    Good morning,

    I read your comment this morning regarding Tyler Hill! Thanks for the response and insight. If he ends up back with the 67′s, I will go see a few games. Big players do take more time it seems to put it all together. If there is anything there at all, having a player his size that can play would be awesome. Even if he ends up being a Brian Boyle, 3rd line type. He may be worth the risk.

    Habfan17

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Morning Steve! Hope all goes well with you this summer. A stupid question. Where do the 67′s play?

      • Luke says:

        Ottawa, Jewel of the right side of Ontario.

        • Habfan10912 says:

          I knew that but do they play at the Canadian Tire Center?

          • Luke says:

            Wow… Oh my. Right over my head… hahaha

            “TD Place at Lansdowne” is the home…

          • Habfan17 says:

            Good morning! They played at Canadian Tire Centre the last two seasons while the renovations to Landsdowne park were completed.
            They will now be back playing out of the newly named TD Place.

            Habfan17

          • CJ says:

            Good morning Jim. They have spent the last two season’s at the CTC. It proved to be an epic failure. The team returns to Landsdown park (Bank st. – Glebe) this season, which will allow me to once again resume a more consistent presence at home games.

            For folks not familiar with the city of Ottawa, I can not impress upon each of you just how inconvenient CTC is for almost everyone, outside of those living in Kanata. Further, the parking, road infrastructure, buses, etc., are terribly managed. The entire experience is not one conducive to attracting or retaining fans.

    • CJ says:

      Good morning Steve. I wouldn’t go out of your way to watch Hill play. He might be interesting to keep an eye on, however he is not Canadiens property. This will be a make or break opportunity. It is not very often that a player is invited back (Tanner Eberle is the exception, not the rule).

      I suppose what they say is true, you only have one chance to make a first impression.

      Cheers, CJ

      • Habfan17 says:

        Hey CJ,

        You never know! Maybe he will show enough to get a contract. I wonder how many other players will get an invite to the rookie camp that may not have been at the development camp?

        I will definitely get out to more 7′s games now that they are back at the Civic Centre ( TD Place ).

        Habfan17

  16. Luke says:

    Good Morning!

    I Hope everyone has their coffee and is settled in for a big day of breaking Habs news.

    I think Boone should be ready to live blog the events to come.

  17. Marc10 says:

    I don’t think we’ll win the cup, but we’re inching our way there. Frankly Habs management has done a stellar job the past two years. Every year we take a step in the right direction. I like this year’s lineup. If Chucky takes a big step, we’ll be a nightmare for anyone in the East.

    MB built a team that can beat the Bruins. Now he needs d to build a team that can beat the West. I give it three years, but who knows what happens if Chucky puts it into gear. In any event it’s a masterful job. This team was in chambles. Now it’s one of the best run franchises in the league. GHG

    • Cal says:

      I don’t call a core of Price, Subban, Pacioretty, Pleks and Eller a shambles. Remember what it was like pre-Gainey.
      Many here laud Gillet for buying the team and being there at the games. The Habs barely had any scouting or infrastructure to save Gillet money. There wasn’t a management team. Molson is doing things the right way. All we fans have to do is support it.

  18. Mavid ® says:

    48

    Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

  19. rhino514 says:

    24 Dogs posts below that we still need a quality top four dman in order to be a contender (among other things).
    If Emelin starts playing like he did before the injury and progresses a wee bit, you don´t think him, Gilbert, Subban, and Markov (for at least one more year) are a good top 4?
    If one wants to be serious about developing Tinordi (Beaulieu is pretty much set), the only way to improve that top four would be to trade one of the aforementioned, as there is o other place for them to play. So you are basically saying trade Emelin, since Subban and Markov are anchors and Gilbert has just been acquired.
    And Emelin is the only intimidating Dman we have on a physically challenged team, so the return would have to have this quality as well I suspect.
    I think the question nobody knows is: has Emelin reached his ceiling or will he continue to improve? Will he actually play alot better on his natural side (this is largely assumed, but rightfully so?) His point total made a nice improvement in the two years prior to his injury…

    • 24 Cups says:

      Let me try and explain.

      When I evaluate what a player’s value is, it is based solely on what they have done, not what they might do or what I want them to do. Based on that notion:
      Subban – golden
      Markov – savvy vet
      Emelin – good physical presence but inconsistent
      Gilbert – played with Campbell and had lots of ice time on a cellar dwelling team. Two year deal and lack of competition means the 2nd unit job is his.
      Weaver – Is basically a 3rd pairing/7th Dman. A good fit for that role. Undersized but gutsy. A younger version of Bouillon who can play the right side.
      Beaulieu/Tinordi – It’s time for one or both of them to play in the NHL. Having said that, they are still unproven rookies. It will be heartbreaking if Beaulieu doesn’t develop into a top four guy.

      Gunslinger – MaxPac on the left is great but the team needs someone for the right flank, as well. I don’t see anyone on the team or in the system that fits that bill. The Vanek trade may have eventually flat lined but it did show what a legit scorer on the right side could mean to the team. Of course any top notch scorer would also create cap issues. Best option would be a kid who gets drafted like MaxPac (22nd) and then goes on to exceed expectations.

      24 Cups

      • Cal says:

        Sekac. If he doesn’t get injured, bank on it.

        • 24 Cups says:

          No problem. HI/O has already retired his number ahead of Guy Lapointe!

          All kidding aside, if Sekac makes the team he will probably line up alongside Eller and Bourque with 3rd line minutes and no PP time. Not much chance of becoming a sharpshooter under those conditions.

          For me, Sekac indirectly takes the spot of Collberg on the prospect list which makes the Vanek trade even more of a steal. This could be a transition year for the Habs with the possibility of icing five rookies. I can live with that fact seeing they all have legit chances of eventually becoming regulars. The big question would be how Therrien handles this unique situation.

          24 Cups

          • Cal says:

            Chucky, Pleks and Sekac.
            That is the line.

          • 24 Cups says:

            Strictly because of nationality? That’s a major slight against Gallagher who has busted his ass ever since he first arrived. Gallgher is the best RW on the team yet he has to play 3rd line minutes? I don’t know how I feel about that one.

            24 Cups

        • Cal says:

          Re:Gallagher- actually, on the right should be playing 3rd line minutes on a contending team. I love how he plays, but he shouldn’t be the 2nd under-sized guy on a line where he has to dig the puck out of the corners for a 40lbs heavier Patches.

  20. ClutchNGrab says:

    The time between Elliott Friedman scoop about Leiweke and the official announcement by MLSE probably appeared like an eternity for him.

    After all the denials he was finally vindicated. I assume MLSE could have just say “no comment” instead of framing him as a uninformed reporter.

    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=459749

  21. HardHabits says:

    Interesting. The first three picks will now be subject to a lottery draw. Which means the team that finishes last could very well pick 4th over-all. I like this idea and think they should expand it to the top 5 picks. That would moth ball that Tank™ for the foreseeable future.

    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=459859

    • CH Marshall says:

      Thank goodness. This is a good step in the right direction. How EDM has been getting away with this and not doing anything right is pure theatre!… Or maybe the league’s just trying to help the Leafs..

  22. punkster says:

    Better late than never of the 3 music selections:
    1) Whitehorse – interesting duo out of Hamilton
    2) Mahavishnu Orchestra – Birds of Fire album from 1973
    3) Sonora Carrusles – salsa rules, from the mid 1990s

    Release the Subbang!!!

  23. Chuck Kept Calm and Carey'd On ® says:

    Dear Rogers,

    Screw you.

    Sincerely, Me.

  24. 24 Cups says:

    In terms of the survey question that relates directly to today’s thread, I think the Habs are two players away from being a true Cup contender. What does the team still need? A gunslinger and a top four Dman. You also might want to add a tough as nails secondary player who can engage the grunts and head-hunters who still are part of the 21st century league mentality.

    24 Cups

    • Phil C says:

      Who do you not consider top four, Gilbert or Emelin? Gilbert was top two in Edmonton and I thought he was one of the league’s up and coming defensemen before his career took a nosedive in Minnesota. So I am really hoping Gilbert will be a pleasant surprise.

      If Emelin doesn’t work out, they also have Beaulieu waiting in the wings.

      • 24 Cups says:

        Emelin wasn’t anything special last year keeping in mind they played him on his off side.

        Gilbert looked good in Florida playing alongside Campbell. However, this was after being a train wreck the year before.

        I guess the true test for both of these guys is to compare them to the second pairings of the Cup winning teams of the past few years.

        As for Beaulieu, he is still a prospect, not a NHL blueliner.

        24 Cups

        • Phil C says:

          Fair point about Beaulieu and Emelin is a bit of a wild card. When Emelin is on his game though, he is an intimidating presence as it forces the opposition to be aware all the time. I hope he can take his game to the next level.

          Gilbert was arguably Edmonton’s best defensemen for a few years. He got rocked by Carcillo with a big hit and he was never the same for the rest of that season. The following season he got pneumonia, fell down the depth chart, and then he was bought out. I’m hoping he is ready to play to his potential. He really fits in nicely with the Habs so I hope he finds some chemistry.

          Here is the Carcillo hit. The only poetic justice is that he injured himself on the play. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qJ242IrIokM

          • 24 Cups says:

            In a perfect world:), Gilbert and Emelin would be a 3rd pairing unit.

            Beaulieu and ??????? would be the 2nd pairing with Weaver as the extra man. There’s a few what ifs in that scenario.

            As for Carcillo on the day of the Moore settlement, all I can say is that he is everything that is wrong with today’s NHL.

            24 Cups

        • twilighthours says:

          He was actually a good corsi player relative to his team the year before, has a history of being a solid performer on bad teams.

          Some Habs fans 1) advocated we sign him last year instead of Murray or bouillon and 2) predicted he’d have a good year last year and were not surprised when he did.

    • HardHabits says:

      I think the Habs have the pieces to make it out of the East and into the SCF. If not this year than next. As it stands for this season let them play until the dead line and see where they stand.

      Last season until Vanek they were .500 and we know the rest.

      I think the team will be wiser, more experienced and battle hardened. The core is established and it is that group that is being built upon rather than squandered. There seems to be some action in the pipes which means they can pull the trigger.

      The Habs are not elite yet (in other words top 5 in the league) but they are part of the next group banging at the door, meaning they should finish in the best 6th to 10th range. They might even regress to the mean, in other the words middle of the pack if the stars don’t align and the young vets fail to step it up.

      The East is weak. Tampa looks improved, Boston marginally worse, Pittsburgh has had a major make over. Rangers regressed. The Atlantic is ripe for the taking and looks to be a 3 horse race.

      But what do I know.

    • rhino514 says:

      If Emelin starts playing like he did before the injury and progresses a wee bit, you don´t think him, Gilbert, Subban, and Markov are a good top 4?
      If one wants to be serious about developping Tinordi (Beaulieu is pretty much set), the only way to improve that top four would be to trade one of the aforementioned, so you are basically saying trade Emelin, since Subban and Markov are anchors and Gilbert has just been acquired.
      And Emelin is the only intimidating Dman we have on a physically challenged team, so the return would have to have this quality as well I suspect.
      I think the question nobody knows is: has Emelin reached his ceiling or will he continue to improve? Will he actually play alot better on his natural side (this is largely assumed, but rightfully so?) His point total made a nice improvement in the two years prior to his injury…

  25. SlovakHab says:

    Quick prospect update: Reway gets 0+2 in his first Europe Champions League Game, and he also scored in the shootout
    KalPa Kuopio – Sparta Prague 4:5 (after shootout)
    (Reway 0+2)

    highlights: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=giYXGhP2FW0

  26. Phil C says:

    When I look at the East, I see no reason why the Habs can’t be among the teams to beat. Boston and Detroit seem to be trending down. Pittsburgh certainly did not improve without Neal, Niskenan, and Orpik, and as long as they have Fleury they are a wildcard. The Rangers lack depth on defense, so they are a few injuries away from struggling, and they still don’t impress me up front. Tampa may be good, but they are no better than the Habs, especially after the Stamkos line. Columbus may be trending up, but I not convinced they are contenders yet. Philly are still missing some pieces.

    Toronto may be the team to beat in the East…BAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHA,hahahahahahahahahahahaha…….aaaahahahahahahahaha, hahaha. HA. Okay I’m good.

    But seriously folks, if you don’t think this Habs can win the East, who scares you? (We’ll worry about the West when they make the final)

    • CJ says:

      I think our division will be very competitive this year. Ottawa, Florida and Toronto will be better. Buffalo should be a tougher out, but they are still second tier. Boston, Montreal and Tampa should vie for the division title. Detroit will fight with Ottawa, Florida and Toronto for positions 4-7.

      Injuries will go a long way to determining the final standing. We are not immune. We lose Price and we are very likely to miss the postseason. There is significant competitive balance in the East, specifically in the Atlantic division. I could foresee less than 10 points separating first from fifth in the division. Over 82 games, that’s five wins. A bounce here, a bad call there and you could be in or out.

      • Phil C says:

        Not many teams can survive losing their franchise player and still be top tier, so you are right about injuries.

        I think think the GM has done a great job of building some depth into the lineup. They can roll four lines and 6 D to spread out the wear and tear, and they have guys like Bournival and Moen probably in the pressbox waiting for the inevitable injuries to fill in. Those guys would have been top nine on the 11-12 team. They even have some depth on the farm.

        The only area they are thin on is scoring depth, so if they lose more than one of their scoring forwards, it could be tough. But otherwise, I think they are fairly well equipped to handle injuries.

        • CJ says:

          Vastly improved in this area Phil. Gosh, looking back even two years ago, we were terribly thin.

          Additionally, it will be so nice not being the among the oldest and smallest teams in the league. We are likely still going to favor the over 30 crowd more than I’d like, but at least we are getting bigger. Slowly, but surely the pieces are falling into place….

        • scamorza says:

          I agree with Phil here. CJ you are right about injuries especially Carey but the same pretty well can be said for any team with their star player, although Tampa surprised me when Stamkos went down. but then again that is the point here I guess TB Carrie on because of their depth especially their rookies , young’uns who surprised many. In the same vein I feel much more comfortable with our beloved Habs depth this year even in comparison to last. their 5-7 d is just one example

          come to Dorion suits where you get no….”hassoles” _ Yvon Lambert

          • CJ says:

            I was certainly being captain obvious regarding the key injury piece. I guess my point is this; for the team to take the next step the stars will need to align perfectly. IMO, I can’t see the team winning with DD and Pleks as our 1-2, especially when trying to match up against anyone representing the western conference. I think we are a good team, bordering on becoming very good. I still have a sinking suspicion that key pieces are missing.

            Now, should the Canes, whom I believe will be in the draft lottery, decide to part with Eric Staal, well then, now we are talking…..

          • UKRAINIANhab says:

            Hi Cj!

            I get your thought about Staal…but his caphit is a whopping 9.5… I personally do not think he is worth it and we would not be able to get him.

          • CJ says:

            It’s a pipe dream. I have always coveted that big, point a game centre to be our number one. If we had a guy like that, followed by Pleks, Eller and Maholtra, then we’d really be cooking with gas.

            As it stands, we have a 2, 2B, 3 and 4 up the middle.

          • UKRAINIANhab says:

            Yep. I think if Eller has a big year…. Maybe we can really get that #1 center.

            Am i dreaming? Hopefully he gets more PP time

      • ProHabs says:

        You sure Ottawa will be better? I think the most talent on their team now is SpartaCat.

        • CJ says:

          Yes. The team is better without Spezza. In fact, so much as I hate to say this, they could be a playoff contender. They are young, but now one year further matured. Their goaltending will be better. Karlsson will be much better. Zibby and Turris are going to be better. Further, I like the deal for Chaison and the MacArthur signing.

          Lastly, Bobby Ryan will be healthy and motivated looking for a new contract.

          • ProHabs says:

            But I thought you said “I have always coveted that big, point a game centre (Spezza) to be our number one. If we had a guy like (Spezza) then we’d really be cooking with gas”.

          • CJ says:

            Sure Spezza and Karlsson put up points, but when you are a combined minus 60, there’s a very real chance that you are hurting as much as helping. Combined with the off ice theatrics and I firmly believe Ottawa will be better off without Spezza in the fold. Lastly, Pleks, at 5’11″ plays much bigger than Spezza. Heck, it could be argued that DD plays a bigger game.

  27. Habit in the west says:

    I think there are too many people being to cautious. Remember what it took in 86 and 93 with two average teams, and one very good goaltender. Look at what happened against Boston. I think they’re heavily underrated which could work in their favor this year. The neat thing, as the say when you make it to the playoffs, anything can happen. They’re better than the Rangers going into this year. They’re better than the Bruins, they’ve proven that, Chara is one year older. As much as Gorges was loved in Montreal, the team is better without him, they have better balance, better size, better puck moving, and they’re stronger and more balanced up front, one big player away from making them to tough to play against in the east. Price is the best goaltender in the league, it’s not as some might say and the improvment on D will show in a big way for him. Puck possession will improve this year, and Gally and Chucky are in their second full year. There’s two big guys that can step in and considering where they’ve been with less size, I wouldn’t be surprised to see them fight it out with some of the best in the west now. This team didn’t remain flat, they upgraded, and leadership, especially Gionta and Gorges, is overrated considering the experience this team has now. There is too much character on this team for them to crumble like a lot of the hockey “predictors” are predicting. The biggest difference maker will be Price.

    May this francise return to glory!!!

  28. Habitant in Surrey says:

    A nice version of ‘In Flanders Fields’ by Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre

    http://ww1.canada.com/flanders-fields/video-montreal-mayor-denis-coderre-reads-in-flanders-fields

    ‘In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
    Between the crosses, row on row,
    That mark our place; and in the sky
    The larks, still bravely singing, fly
    Scarce heard amid the guns below.
    We are the Dead. Short days ago
    We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
    Loved and were loved, and now we lie
    In Flanders fields.
    Take up our quarrel with the foe:
    To you from failing hands we throw
    The torch; be yours to hold it high.
    If ye break faith with us who die
    We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
    In Flanders fields.’

    Canadian physician Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae

  29. scavanau says:

    Checking in from vacation. Doesn’t look like any earth shattering news?

  30. Mavid ® says:

    for some reason my back is killing me..friggen epidural I had 28 years ago is coming back to haunt me (they screwed up and damaged my spine) ..gonna take some good drugs and go nite nite..hope you all have a good evening..

    Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

  31. Hobie says:

    Not quite there yet…

    When you look at it we have one elite forward in Max Paciorretty. We’ve got two elite defencemen in PK Subban and Andrei Markov. We’ve got a top notch goaltender in Carey Price.

    We’re still waiting for Alex Galchenyuk and Brendan Gallagher to mature and take another step. We’re still waiting for Nate Beaulieau and Jarred Tinordi to mature.

    Our defence and goaltending is good but we’re thin up front.

    I think we’ll be there once impact forwards Jacob De La Rose and Nikita Scherbak are ready a few years down the road. Also solid role players like Mike McCarron, Connor Crisp and Brett Lernout.

    We might be able to make some noise over the next few years but unfortunately we’re still several years away from being elite.

    Hobie’s Habs Video : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=byrgZ90b5Yw&feature=youtu.be

    • HabFab says:

      Can this kid chuck them? Can he play?

      HabsWorld.net – The #Habs are bringing in more size to their rookie camp as 6’6, 236 lb winger Tyler Hill (Ottawa, OHL) has been added to their invite list.

      • CJ says:

        Not a fighter. Evan Wardley fills that need in spades though.

        • frontenac1 says:

          Agreed CJ! The kid is a gentle giant. My 64 year old sister could kick his arse . Hey , you were mentioning Tony Twist yesterday? He is on my Top Ten Fighters of all time. Loved his passion. Check this out. Unleash The Demon. Enjoy Amigo.
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=38EhaJ3iJGU

          • CJ says:

            Yeah, Hill is a pulp on skates. Twist was a monster. He’s top five in my all time list.

          • frontenac1 says:

            He eventually took the Heavyweight Crown away from one of my other all time favourites Joey Kocur. He also had a devastating Right. Kocur followed the code of giving the Rookie Twist a go in 1989. Kocur kept his punches to the body in this bout ,but you can see the pain inflicted on Tony”s face. After the fight ,Tony was reported to thank Joey for the opportunity to fight.
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tPxvsCX71P0

          • CJ says:

            Link Gaetz and Joey Kocur are right near the top of my list Front. Two of the toughest I’ve ever seen.

      • Habfan17 says:

        Hotchkiss
        8 Tyler Hill, LW (uncommitted)
        6’6, 225 lbs, b. 4/13/1995 [2013]
        Big skilled forward who’s still rough around the edges … Was a tale of two players in tourney … Early on, was tentative with iffy balance … Used size in bursts thru middle, down outside, and along boards but was not decisive or aggressive … Feet were slow and puck control was lacking, hands looked unpolished … Later in tourney came into his own … Showed surprising shiftiness, great burst quickness with the puck on his stick … Used his reach and quick hands to dangle in neutral zone and inside blueline, creating numerous scoring opportunities for himself … Wrister is hard and accurate, releases quickly and deceptively … Worked hard in corners, played physical along the boards, very difficult to get off puck, fought thru checks … Good PKer and in defensive zone, utilizes his reach, a little stationary … Even at the top of his game had some issues … Lacks killer instinct overall (reminds of Brian Boyle but with more upside) … Was used on the point on the power-play and was dreadful, exposed by PK forwards for multiple SH scoring chances … Major project but intrigues with skill, speed for size, and intimidating strength when utilized … Injured in knee-on-knee collision towards end of tourney.

        Courteous of Hockeysfuture.com

        Habfan17

        • CJ says:

          Played with the 67′s last year Steve. Nothing special. He has some tools, but he’s very raw. Personally there are times when he’s looked very capable while at other times he’s completely invisible, which isn’t easy given his size. Mind you, I’ve only seen him live a few times, so my report is based on a small sample size.

      • Ron says:

        He didn’t fair too well in the couple of fights on hockeyfights.com. The one with Mike McCarron was a tug fest..

        • CJ says:

          Big big guys usually have the worst fights. Guys over 6’3″ generally don’t provide the entertainment of two smaller men. The fight with Mac was pathetic.

  32. CJ says:

    Good evening.

    Will the Canadiens elevate themselves to the top of the league, winning the Stanley Cup this season; Almost assuredly no.

    Who fills the leadership role; on ice the young core, led by PK, Eller, Max and Gallagher. In the dressing room and off the ice, Carey Price will continue to lead this group.

    Sekac will be given every opportunity to crack the lineup. Pending injuries or unless a deal is made, I have to believe the opening night roster looks something like….

    Max DD PA
    Chucky Pleks Sekac
    Bourque Eller Gally
    Prust MM Bournival

    Markov and PK won’t play together, beyond the PP. If we hope to have anything left in Markov’s tank come playoff time, we need to manage his minutes. He needs to be given reduced responsibilities. I really hope Beaulieu and Tinordi are ready to assume a greater role and responsibility. By the time we rolled into New York to battle the Rangers, Markov, among many of others was wiped and became but a fraction of himself. Markov should be in the 3/4 pairing, not on the 1/2.

    Lastly, top six defencemen should be;

    PK Tinordi Markov Beaulieu Gilbert Emelin

    • southaltahab says:

      Don’t know where he fits but I want to see Weise play.

      • CJ says:

        Totally missed Dale! Embarrassing. Yes, he bumps Bournival on the fourth line. IMO, there is likely to be a roster move or two before pucks drops in Toronto on opening night.

        Cheers, CJ

    • Phil C says:

      Good looking line up, but I doubt Tinordi bumps Weaver out of the top six. The Habs can use the RH shot on the third pairing and the vet to play with one of the kids. I think Tinordi and Beaulieu will be competing for the 6th spot, maybe even platooning, although with a year of waiver exemption left, I expect the one who doesn’t make it will be sent down.

      I would probably flip Bourque and Sekac as well. Whoever plays with Plekanec will have defensive responsibilities which may be a lot to ask of Sekec as a rookie. He’ll need at least a half a season to get used to the NHL and to get to know the opposition.

  33. twilighthours says:

    @Ron

    You wrote

    “Maybe if everyone keeps it up you can get him to reply using some inapproiate names and have him banned as in previous threads with others.”

    I would love to know what you’re talking about. If you don’t want to reply publicly, then email me directly.

  34. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    1. Who will fill the leadership void?
    No need since Gio and Gorges’s leadership was overrated.

    2. Who will grab the available spot among the top nine forwards?
    Sekac

    3. What will be the impact of Andrei Markov and P.K. Subban playing together full time?
    Question should be what will be the impact of Emelin playing his natural side? We already now PK and Markov will be good.

    4. Who will claim the sixth defence spot?
    Beaulieu…too much mobility.

    5. Will the power play improve?
    With Gilbert and Beaulieu…yes.

  35. habstrinifan says:

    If I may, I would like to join in on the discussion prompted by HabinBurlington’s response to the question.

    I quote:
    “I still think the Boston series drained Montreal physically and mentally. That was a huge mountain climbed and conquered. Given the team is relatively young, it was hard to regain the poise and such required in the playoffs.”

    Quite possibly the case. However I am with Chelios24, especially going forward. I quote Chelios24.

    “I agree, but in my view a Stanley Cup winning team needs to keep the motor running for four series, not two”.

    On the surface the opinions above seem obvious and even unsubstantial answers to the question.

    But they provide probably the most difficult task for the coaches. And I repeat emphatically… the coaches.

    The HABS have as someone said, on paper, a team capable of going to the finals. The hurdles of injuries (there will be some); emotional drain (there definitely will be that) and playoff fatigue or depleting exuberance after any series will have to be overcome by the team. The coaches though will be responsible for providing the solutions.

    So both HabinBurlington and Chelios24 are right about what ‘happened in the past’ and therefore right in predicting what must be successfully mastered to win #25.

    It wont be talent at this point but management of talent that would be crucial.

    “Protest Rogers blackout of Habs game…sign at:

    https://www.ipetitions.com/petition/no-habs-blackout-rds.

    • frontenac1 says:

      Said it many times. The Veterans with the exception of Markov ran out of gas after the Bruins series. Two of them were given their pink slips. The Kids played fine.

      • UKRAINIANhab says:

        Hi Front.

        I think the olympics and the Bruins series took a huge toll on Markov. He just wasn’t his crisp self in the rangers series. I thought if anything his mind was fatigued. Markov still needs to play less minutes to play to his full potential at his age. Hopefully, Beaulieu can play well, making Markov play less.

      • courneya12mac 1 says:

        yes . they mailed it in , Front … looking forward to this year

    • Phil C says:

      I think you make a very good point that the coaching staff can be the difference between two equally strong teams. Do you think the Habs have that?

      As for injuries, I see that as a function of depth, so that is on the GM. I think the GM has done a fantastic job of building depth. They have enough bonafide NHLers for 5 lines, and they finally have some defensemen on the farm who may be ready. They even have depth in net with Tokarski.

      • habstrinifan says:

        I think the HABS are(were) as great as the Rangers by the time of the semifinals.

        And while Price may have bolstered the team a lot, goaltending was not the problem. Tokarski gave us good goaltending.

        I think the Bruins series let down was the problem (including under-estimating the Rangers)… and that the coaches could have had better preparation for the series.

        After the first game debacle, the coaches basically played into the Rangers hand with too conservative an approach.

        “Protest Rogers blackout of Habs game…sign at:

        https://www.ipetitions.com/petition/no-habs-blackout-rds.

  36. NightRyder says:

    ESPN prospect rankings. McCarron is listed as No. 13 (!) on the team’s own list.

    Montreal Canadiens
    Org rank: 10

    Overview

    Montreal’s system lacks an elite prospect, but they have a ton of good to very good ones thanks to strong recent draft classes, especially in their work after the first round.

    Top 10 Prospects
    Name Position Overall
    Jacob de la Rose LW 34
    Artturi Lehkonen LW 52
    Nathan Beaulieu D 62
    Nikita Scherbak LW 92
    Martin Reway LW 98
    Jarred Tinordi D JM*
    Charles Hudon LW JM*
    Zach Fucale G 5G
    Sven Andrighetto RW
    Daniel Audette C
    *: Just missed

    Charles Hudon is a pretty versatile forward in terms of roles he can play and positions. He has very impressive hockey IQ in both ends to combine with a high skill level and good work ethic. He’s not a dynamic skill player, but he can produce, though he’s on the smaller side. Jarred Tinordi is tough to read because historically, the offense has been nowhere to be seen. The good attributes are hard to ignore, though: He’s a monster in terms of his 6-foot-6 frame, skates very well for a huge player and isn’t a work in progress. He plays gaps well, knows his assignments and can play with pace, though not always in terms of puck movement. He could be one of those very good, defensive defensemen who ends up on a second pairing in the NHL, but the lack of skill is a risk.

    Sven Andrighetto had a very impressive first AHL season, in which he was a top player for Hamilton. He’s a great skater who has above-average raw possession skills. He just needs to get stronger and improve his defense. Son of former NHLer Donald Audette Daniel Audette’s skill level is great. His high-end vision allows him to make passes of moderate difficulty look routine. His size is his biggest weakness: He’s 5-foot-8, 176 pounds, and his physical limitations make his potential NHL even-strength production questionable.

    The stock of Jiri Sekac (11th in system) ticked up this season with a fine KHL campaign and a decent IIHF World Championship. He has solid puck skills with an above-average shot and vision. He projects as a skilled third-liner, someone who won’t be a scorer on a good team but can skate a regular shift and play on the second power play. Jeremy Gregoire (12th) had a good bounce-back season following a mediocre draft season. He’s a hard-working player with good hockey IQ and fine skill, but his skating is below-average with an awkward skating style, though he does have fine top speed when he gets going.

    2014-15 impact

    Jacob de la Rose, Andrighetto and Sekac will battle for an open third-line forward spot out of camp. Nathan Beaulieu and Tinordi will battle for a spot in the defensive lineup to start the season.

    Noteworthy prospect

    First-round pick (2013) Mike McCarron (13th) has had some issues adjusting to the OHL pace. He’s a huge forward (6-foot-, 238 pounds) who plays tough and has some skill but needs to improve his first few steps and ability to play at a fast pace.

  37. I voted yes. We have two stud moving defensemen in Markov and Subban.

    We have 4 shut down defense lead by Gilbert, and Weaver.

    We have our future 50 goal scorer in MaxPacs

    We have one of the greatest goalies in the league with two solid backups (ok one, sorry Budaj)

    We have a coaching system that the troops follow.

    And our secondary scoring although questionable right now I believe we blow 2014 out of the water.

    Next, the Eastern conference is even weaker than it was last season. Many teams are rebuilding in hopes of a solid Connor McDavid or Eichel pick, I can see the Habs in the top 5 once again.

    I am placing a lot of scoring in Eller, Galchenyuk, and the new old guy PAP, (I have no faith in him) so who knows.

    No rose colored glasses here, just the facts.

    Back to work troops! Say no to house league hitting :)

    Shane Oliver
    @sholi2000
    http://www.sholi2000.com
    A Little fun during the Intermission
    Brandon Predators End Season Video

  38. piper says:

    The Habs are close to winning the east but are a far cry from winning the cup. Just look at the teams in the west. LA, St.Louis, Anaheim, Chicago, Minnesota, Colorado, heck even SJ in the mess they are in could beat our Habs in a seven game series. Never mind getting through the east. Lots of work to do yet.

  39. Timo says:

    Don;t know if this has been posted… it’s been mentioned in the past though. Could be as soon as the end of next year. Hmm… Basic package at $20, RDS and TVA Sports and voila… all one person needs for under $30. Sweet. Make it happen, HiS and CRTC!

    http://www.vancouversun.com/business/Regulator+offers+broad+proposals+changing+Canadas+delivery/10137103/story.html

    • Ron says:

      The only draw back I can see with the info in the article is the provider could let you pick channels as you want but tack on the rental for the box receiver (at a higher cost) which now comes with your existing package. Lets hope their forced into something affordable. I’m east of Montreal so I will be getting everything. It would be nice to see all you crew out west get satisfied.

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      Quote from article: “The regulator touches on that in its notice, proposing that program suppliers be banned from demanding “unreasonable penetration-based” rates for their programming.”

      Too late…they’ve been “penetrating” us for years already.

  40. JUST ME says:

    Wow ! Talk about a question that goes straight to the point !

    I think the Habs are somewhere around the 5th or 6 th best but not in the top 4. But once you hover close to the top you never know.

    I think this team is not quite there yet. Either one player away or one year away.
    There are a lot of unknowns that are not necessarely negative.
    I expect PA to do more than Briere.
    I also want a guy like Chucky to take a bit of Gio`s place.
    I expect a lot more from Moen that may be on his way out ..
    I can`t wait to see how much Weise can give us on a full schedule. Not worried with the d-squad time to trust the kids and live with it. Mystery man Sekac still puzzles me…
    Almost forgot, i expect P.K. to be the man !

    I think we will have about the same results points wise ,should do better on special teams but will also have to live with the decision to go with a few young inexperienced players.

    Experience might just be the key word here at least in the playoffs. We just let go over 4000 total played nhl games.

    I expect you guys to finally come to your senses and admit that Therrien is the best coach we have seen in a long long time. Ya right…

    • scamorza says:

      Always believe they can, plus the season hasn’t even started yet. Seriously though, think they have a better team than last year and we made the final four. So anything is possible get it and see what happens. We definitely will make the playoffs so no worry there( yea yea I know what about injuries…)

      come to Dorion suits where you get no….”hassoles” _ Yvon Lambert

  41. Habitant in Surrey says:

    ‘Do you think the Canadiens have the team to win the Stanley Cup in 2015 ?’

    How does Cowan come-up with these questions without making it mandatory before answering You must remove Your rose-coloured glasses ?

    And, by the way, besides the obligatory Yes/No options, where is the ‘maybe’ button ???

    _______________________________________________________

    The Rogers NHL Habs Petition: please read and sign it here; http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/no-habs-blackout-rds

  42. Psycho29 says:

    Thanks to ‘Say Ash’ and ‘bwoar’ for their opinions/input about what I posted on the earlier thread:

    Does anyone have something called “Prometheus”, a wireless TV Box?
    Had an in-person demo with the creator last night. Too complicated for me to understand but very impressive.
    All movies, TV shows, series and PPV in 1080HD. Even brand new movies that are still in the theatre. Also all the NHL, NFL, and soccer games (home and away broadcasts)….50,000 radio stations…create your own playlists.
    Might help solve some issues people are having with Hab game.

    Just curious to your opinions, not sure if I’ll get it…

    Have a look:

    http://libertytv.ca/

    • The Jackal says:

      Sounds cool, kind of like a Netflix with absolutely everything.
      Do you have to stream? Can you watch live TV?

      I feel like I’d go over my internet usage pretty fast with that, but I’m gonna look into it as well since I need to set up cable/wireless when I move to Montreal.

      ______________________
      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  43. Chuck Kept Calm and Carey'd On ® says:

    I’ll consider it a successful year if the Habs do just two things:

    1) Make it to the playoffs, then…
    2) Win the final game of their season.

    Hab fans want choice! Sign the petition to give us back our games!
    http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/no-habs-blackout-rds

  44. Habitant in Surrey says:

    If I were the da Weeds’ executive board I would dump Leiwicke today, and lasso Mark Cohon before he goes anywhere else.

    But, since that may turn that sad-sack organization around, I’m just going to keep My trap shut.

    _______________________________________________________

    The Rogers NHL Habs Petition: please read and sign it here; http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/no-habs-blackout-rds

  45. Slackman says:

    Guys, guys, guys…

    If Timo can freely spew his crap on this forum I think Chelios24 should get the same privilege without being called an idiot….

    Lets be civil!!

    —————————————————
    No Substitutions Please.

  46. Habfan17 says:

    Hello everyone!

    I am looking forward to training camp and the season. I am one of the ones on the die that the Habs are a better team and am not worried about a lack of leadership with Gionta and Gorges gone.

    I have noticed some fans have lined Sekac up on the right side. Both he and Bergevin ( during an ineterview ), have stated, he is a left wing ( Sekac ), ( he will play left wing ) Bergevin. Of course Therrien will make me and both of them look foolish by moving him over…lol

    I think there will be some strong competition this training camp for spots. I could see;
    Patches, DD, Parenteau
    Galchenyuk, Eller, Gallagher/Bourque
    Sekac, Pleks, Bourque?Gallagher
    Prust, Malhotra, Weise

    Bourque does seem more comfortable scoring from the right side, having twice scored 27 goals from there!

    Habfan17

    • Phil C says:

      Good point abour Sekac, it increases the logjam on LW and will help fuel the Galchenyuk to centre debate.

      I can’t see Plekanec getting third line minutes, he was the top forward in the playoffs as far as ice-time goes, so I suspect he will still be the go-to guy. Eller is an ideal 3rd line centre anyway. If he starts lighting up the league, we can talk about if he should move up, but until then I see him as the third centre.

  47. savethepuck says:

    @ Scamorza;

    Is it J.J. Daigneault?

    “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
    Carey Price

    • scamorza says:

      From what I see the initials LO does that look right?

      come to Dorion suits where you get no….”hassoles” _ Yvon Lambert

    • scamorza says:

      Took a look again and in respect of the music thread…. Hold the line ( Odelien) n’est- ce pas?

      come to Dorion suits where you get no….”hassoles” _ Yvon Lambert

  48. Slackman says:

    1) Name a new band/artist you think we should be listening to.

    2) Name an old band/artist/album you think needs a ‘bump.’

    3) Name your musical ‘guilty pleasure.’

    Ok I’m really late to this party but I want in so…

    1) TY SEGALL. Awesome psychadelic fuzzy punkish pop rock. It’s great. Listen to the album Slaughterhouse or Twins and work your way backwards.

    2)BLACK SABBATH – BORN AGAIN. Criminally underrated album with Ian Gillan on vox. Yeah that’s right the Deep Purple guy. Its the Sabbath album you never knew you loved.

    3) KOOPSTA KNICCA. Sorry guys, I know gangster rap is frowned upon but you can’t beat this. You can’t. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a2pdtAfbAPU (NSFW)

    —————————————————
    No Substitutions Please.

    • slyCH says:

      Ok, I’m in;

      1) Not new but; L7. these girls just flat out rocked. And any band that throws a used t-pon to an unruly German crowd gets my respect.

      2) Garbage. The beat to “as heaven is wide” hooked me, the lyrics knocked me to my feet. A great band.

      3) Sheryl Crowe. Especially her first 3 albums.

    • The Jackal says:

      1) The Black Keys – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mpaPBCBjSVc&list=AL94UKMTqg-9BSoLgo4qJ9dPTMY-N0tKK-

      2) The Rolling Stones – they are awesome.

      3) Not really a “guilty” pleasure but I guess the closest thing for me is John Mayer – real good guitar player and artist but some cheesy songs. Also throw Michael Buble in here.

      ______________________
      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

      • scamorza says:

        Good choice re black keys. are they knew if so add The National to the mix

        come to Dorion suits where you get no….”hassoles” _ Yvon Lambert

    • scamorza says:

      Didn’t even see this earlier but saw some afterthoughts guess I am not sure what is old and new so…

      NEW & Old(er)- Elbow – they have been around for awhile but probably not many have heard of – their music is intelligent and beautiful Brit alternative pop. This band writes about growing older with your significant other and the importance of friends that I have never seen before. Honourable mention for the same reason – Divine Comedy
      Guilty pleasure – “alternative” pop, good country and classical that I am listening to now waiting for a frigging plane to take me home. Sorry slackman but Rap and metal are bottom of my list but again vive le difference!

      come to Dorion suits where you get no….”hassoles” _ Yvon Lambert

    • southaltahab says:

      1. Don’t listen to new bands much. Getting old I guess.

      2. Been into Lynyrd Skynyrd lately. Love the 3 guitars.

      3. Chris De Burgh. Don’t listen to him a lot, but think “Transmission Ends” is a great song and just learned to play it.

  49. habs001 says:

    Enjoy the regular season and hope to make the playoffs..In todays NHL most years there will be 10-12 teams that are pretty close…..many teams have young players that have as much potential as the Habs young players.. Unless the Habs get a few more major stars they will not be any closer to the cup now than in 5 years..Can they win it? yes they can but they may not win it in the next 30 years..that is the reality..

  50. Luke says:

    Well friends,

    Enjoy the evening. Thanks for the Music suggestions, i’ll do some poking around…

    As for now? Beers and Tacos day!

  51. on2ndthought says:

    So much has to do with:
    a) making the playoffs: this is no slam dunk. Bad streak, injuries, other teams’ players having career years.
    b) match ups if we do make playoffs: I don’t want to face Rangers in first (or second or third) round; would rather not face Leafs or Bruins. Won’t mind facing TB (even with Bishop, even with revenge factor), Penguins, Flyers (unless they get a hot goalie), Detroit, Columbus or any body else. So let Tampa take out Boston and NYR next year. I’m not as afraid of the west as most posters here, we have a coachable and adaptable team. It may seem that the Rangers took care of us easily and then were taken care of easily by LA, but both were knife edge series (obviously LA’s overtime wins as an example) as I will expect next years conference and Stanley Cup finals to be.

    So short answer: We can do it, we may do it, we will it, and time will tell if we will do it.

    “a cannonading drive”

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I still think the Boston series drained Montreal physically and mentally. That was a huge mountain climbed and conquered. Given the team is relatively young, it was hard to regain the poise and such required in the playoffs.

      Many lessons were learned from that experience, beating Boston was a huge accomplishment and should only help us this coming season. I still feel the best teams on paper are in the West, but make it to the dance and anything can happen. L.A. may have won in short order, but the games were by and large close and a couple different bounces could have resulted much different.

      CHeers, 2nd!

      • Chelios24 says:

        I agree, but in my view a Stanley Cup winning team needs to keep the motor running for four series, not two

      • Luke says:

        I agree. It was a tough, physical and emotional series and with Boston vanquished, there was due to be a letdown.

        Unfortunately Price also got smoked in that terrible game one and that was just icing on the “emotional-letdown cake.”

        Who would have bet the Rangers and the Habs would be the last two in the East?

        Get in and then worry about if you are supposed to be there.

      • shiram says:

        As good as Tokarski was, I can’t help but think that losing Price was a huge moral sapper for the team.

        He might not be allowed to wear a letter, but he’s clearly a very important leader on the team, and losing him had more than just an effect in nets.

  52. DipsyDoodler says:

    Chelios24…

    You should change your name to “HaroldBallardEraMapleLeafs”

    Fighty. Irrelevant. A perpetual loser.

    —–

    ¯\(°_o)/¯

    • Chelios24 says:

      I just call it like I see it. I love The Habs (and have been a fan for years) but have high standards and am not a pom pom waving, drink the cool-aid type who wears rose colored glasses. I think The Habs are a middle of the road team.

      • canuckbot says:

        You mean Kool-Aid….Oh Yeah!

      • UKRAINIANhab says:

        How you thought shiram was serious when he said moen to the kings for kopitar is slightly puzzling!

        …maybe you should drink the cool aid, rather than the stuff you are drinking currently. Just my suggestion.

        Edit: Kool Aid*

        • Chelios24 says:

          I don’t know the guy as well as you apparently. My bad. He had just made an argument I didn’t agree with so I have nothing to go on to know he was being sarcastic. Is it not impossible some idiot Habs fan could suggest a trade involving DD, Moen and perhaps a high draft pick for Kopitar? Like I said, it screamed asinine to me, but I don’t know this poster at all. Can’t assume super-witty until I see it proven. I’m not on here all the time

          • UKRAINIANhab says:

            Ahh… No worries, just don’t bring the dating line in after! Cheers dood!!! Your welcome here, in my opinion!

        • Chelios24 says:

          oh stop it, why so immature, angry and bully-like? it’s silly, relax

          • shiram says:

            pot : kettle black!

          • Chelios24 says:

            I think I’m entitled to have the opinion that The Habs overachieved in the playoffs and are a middle of the road team as currently constructed. I don’t angrily pile on others unless provoked by immature bullying. Make an argument using facts. Like I said, I don’t blindly think The Habs are fantastic and will win the Cup every year. I admit I’m tough on them. I do not see enough character, leadership and grit on this team, not to mention offensive scoring punch or defensive play from the D to win the Cup.

          • canuckbot says:

            I agree… That’s what Leaf fans do!

          • Luke says:

            Your argument was: “I have high standards and am not a pom pom waving, drink the cool-aid type who wears rose colored glasses.”
            and then some snide remarks to anyone you disagree with.

            You’re obviously entitled to an opinion, but what you have written isn’t exactly prompting a discussion, and when some one does reply contrary to your opinion, you bark at them.

            They have the same right to an opinion.

        • Chelios24 says:

          I think some of you guys take some people’s posts (if somewhat negative, or what I’d call realistic) too much to heart. This should be a forum for all opinions based on fact. Honestly I’d never look to pile-on and insult others unless it had been done to me first. I’m all about the facts and what my eyes tell me. I love The Habs but don’t think they’d make the playoffs in The West. I actually think they will struggle to make the playoffs in the East this season. Too much lost leadership (among other glaring problems). Nothing against any of you guys at all, but if I come on here to post it’s to chat about The Habs, not to join some social club.

          • UKRAINIANhab says:

            They would make the playoffs in the west.

            Absolutely. But thats your opinion. Which is fine

          • twilighthours says:

            .

          • Chelios24 says:

            twilighthours, what’s up with you dude? I think I’ve made my point, if I feel immaturely attacked I will probably push back with wit (not name calling). You seem so offended and are taking things to such a ridiculous personal level. It’s weird.

          • Luke says:

            Oh, Chelios, this site & discussing the Habs is the very description of a social club

            a group of people or the place where they meet, generally formed around a common interest, occupation or activity (e.g. hunting, fishing, science, politics, or charity work)

          • Chelios24 says:

            Luke, we may define the term differently as I’d never knowingly join any social club containing someone like you, LOL

        • Ron says:

          Gee twi, surprised your into the name calling. Maybe if everyone keeps it up you can get him to reply using some inapproiate names and have him banned as in previous threads with others. :D

  53. Steeltown Hab says:

    Pacioretty – DD – Parenteau (if this doesnt work sorry its Davey)
    Galchenyuk – Eller – Gallagher
    Bournival – Plekanec – Bourque / Sekac
    Prust – Malholta – Weise

    Sorry just really don’t want to see Plekanec – Galchenyuk combo. Plekanec works better with North – South guys (Pacioretty, Bournival, Gallagher, Bourque, Gio)

    Galchenyuk should be given a shot in camp to centre Pacioretty or Gallagher

    DD should be looked at on the wing.

    ———————————

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

    • Kooch7800 says:

      DD and Max played awesome with Vanek. If PAP sucks well then that is on PAP not DD.
      I would have Gallagher on the Eller line I would have Bourque there.

      I would have Chucky with Pleks and Sekac

      Max-DD-PA
      Chucky-Pleks-Sekac
      Gallagher-Eller-Bourque
      Prust -Malhotra-Weise

      In that scenerio chucky and Gallagher could swop lines as well. I think Gallagher would be good for Eller though
      This Roster is def not as small as it used to be

      • HabinBurlington says:

        On paper that looks good, also leaves out Bournival which I suppose shows that we are getting some depth because he is a kid i would like to see in the lineup. Injuries always occur though, and at better to have a Bournival or Moen to insert than a Nokelainen or Blunden.

        • on2ndthought says:

          and a Tinordi or Pateryn than a Bouillon. You never have too much depth.

          “a cannonading drive”

        • Kooch7800 says:

          I like Bournival and the sad part is I didn’t even realize I had not slotted him in. Sekac is the big question mark as I have never seen him play and am only going on what I hear in the paper and the net.

          Bournival will have some tough competition this year. Don’t forget Sven will be giving him a push at training camp as well.

          The lines look more balanced with size and speed though this year

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Agree, earlier I commented on the lines and I too had forgotten him. Sekac I think gets a shot early, but if he isn’t producing, Bournival takes that spot I would think. Who knows though, PAP could quickly become MT’s Briere.

      • shiram says:

        I like it, but I think Gallagher is usually a right winger.

        • Kooch7800 says:

          I think you are correct Shiram. I wasn’t sure if he could play both. Is Sekac a RW or LW, I also wasn’t sure.

          • shiram says:

            Eliteprospects has Sekac has a C/LW, but I doubt he gets a sniff of the center spot on the Habs.
            It’s funny most projected lineup I’ve seen had him as a RW.

          • Kooch7800 says:

            Thanks Shiram,

            So if that is correct how about this:

            Max-DD-PA
            Sekac-Pleks-Gallagher
            Chucky-Eller-Bourque
            Prust -Malhotra-Weise

          • shiram says:

            That seems solid to me Kooch.

            We’ll see how Therrien handles it though, he’s had some interesting roster choices before!

  54. shiram says:

    The last of the Whalers calls it quits.
    Giguère announces he retires.

    http://avalanche.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=728903

  55. savethepuck says:

    That picture at the top of the page looks familiar.

    “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
    Carey Price

  56. Habfan10912 says:

    Just made my reservation for the Summit weekend. It can’t come soon enough. I’m always optomistic during the off season and often the teams chances can be measured by the number of “IFS”. Here’s a few of mine:

    -IF Galchenyuk can take his game to the next level.
    - IF Eller can build on his playoff performance and turn into a very good two way player and a 25-30 goal scorer.
    - If PK, Markov and Price play 80 games and are healthy for the playoffs.
    - If Beaulieu and Tinordi are ready to be every game defenseman. Instant MOAR bigger.
    -IF one or two of our rookies surprises at camp again and produce.
    - The power play becomes feared.

    I’m sure there are more IFS but those are the big ones as I see them. I really think besides the overall health of the club, in particular our big 3, the key will be Beaulieu and Tinordi.

    • shiram says:

      I’d be happy to see Eller pot in 20, with a good 2 way game, and consistency, 25-30 seems high for him.

      Health and avoiding injuries is always key.

      Tiny and Beaulieu, I’m thinking it will one of the 2 and not both, unless we face injuries.

      Sekac or Bournival could be that surprise.

      Hoping Gilbert and PAP help out on the PP, having a more threatening second wave would do wonders.

      • Paz says:

        11 players scored 25 or more goals at even strength last season, and Eller almost never plays the power play, so you are absolutely right that 25 to 30 is too high.

        If Eller can score 20 it would be terrific.

        • Habfan10912 says:

          Gotcha Ed and Shirham but I think Eller needs to be responsible for some of Gionta’s production, no? Perhaps my 25+ was unreasonable, although given more quality opportunities I think he’s capable. One thing I know, 12 goals ain’t gonna cut for me this year.

          • shiram says:

            PAP will be replacing most of Gionta’s production, I would think, maybe Sekac too.

            But I agree we need to see some more from Eller.
            18-20 goals would be great.
            Couple that with 18-20 assists, and that makes for a great year for a responsible 3rd line center that usually does not get a sniff of PP.

    • Mavid ® says:

      When do the tickets arrive? Does everyone stay at the same hotel and on the same floor..

      Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

      • Habfan10912 says:

        Hiya Mavid. Ian has made arrangements with the Novotel for a special HIO discount rate. You can call them at 1-866-861-6112 and identify yourself as an HIO’er to get the discounted rate.

        Our rooms are scattered all over the hotel, not the same floor. Of course you are free to stay whereever you’d like and I suppose a few people do stay in other Hotels but I think the majority stay at the Novotel. It’s a nice place and a great location.

  57. Paz says:

    Here’s my theory of how Cups are won.

    1) hot goaltending
    2) dominant dman who controls the game
    3) first line scoring in the clutch.
    4) excellent special teams

    We have the first two assuming Price and Subban are healthy.
    Our power play needs work.
    Move Galchenyuk to the DD, Max line and lets see what happens.

  58. shiram says:

    A ice bucket challenge, from Jean-Claude Van Damme’s daughter.

    http://giant.gfycat.com/ChiefGlossyGrassspider.gif

  59. Cape Breton says:

    Must get bigger & meaner to seriously challenge the Kings for Cup.

  60. frontenac1 says:

    Oh Yeah Baby! Bring it on! Yee-Haw!! Saludos!

  61. Say Ash says:

    Wow. Officially jinxed and the season hasn’t even started.

  62. Cal says:

    As fans, we have to be blindly optimistic while our rational brain keeps shrieking, “No, no, no, no!”
    So, why not hope for the best? A lot of positive things can happen on the way to April 2015.
    Go Habs Go!

  63. mrhabby says:

    it usually comes down to injury free season, career years by players , excellent goal tending and a bit of luck. I have no idea.

  64. John Q Public says:

    And the question was:
    1) Name a new band/artist you think we should be listening to.
    2) Name an old band/artist/album you think needs a ‘bump.’
    3) Name your musical ‘guilty pleasure.

    1/ Antoine Dufour
    2/ Joe Pass
    3/ They Long To Be (Close To You) – Carpenters

  65. Chelios24 says:

    Canadiens were clearly outplayed by The Rangers in the playoffs. They are nowhere close to being a Stanley Cup winning team. Too soft.

  66. HabinBurlington says:

    Why does that headline make me feel a bit like a Leaf fan…… 21 years has been too long…..

  67. Luke says:

    I voted ‘no’ and I will continue to vote ‘no’ until there is a clear #1 stud centre.

    So, go get one, MB.
    Do it. Do it now!

  68. Ian Cobb says:

    This years Stanley Cup Champs will again come from the WEST!
    But our Hab’s have a great opportunity to take the EAST!
    My Stanley Cup playoffs will again, be sending Boston golfing! and having a shot in the Cup finals.

    Summit game tickets, News, Pictures and comments
    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Montreal-Canadiens-We-Are-Fans-Summit/197390760316125

  69. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Idk? I hope?

    That would be fun

  70. flowerpower_74 says:

    I SECOND THAT.

    Montreal Canadiens-2013 and forever Northeast Division Champs

  71. thehabsfan29 says:

    I’d love to see MB go after a player like Antoine Vermette
    Had an amazing year last season and I think he would work well with MT’s system

    Maybe Package a deal with bourque and prospects or picks. Yotes didn’t trade very much to get him in the first place. and of course I know we would have to sweeten the deal if bourque was involved.

    Lines would be
    Patches DD Gallagher
    Parenteau Plek Chucky
    Prust Eller Vermette (yes I know vermette is a center)
    Bournival/Sekac Malhotra Weise

    Thoughts?


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