Windsor Spitfires counting on Canadiens prospects in Memorial Cup

Pat Hickey

Montreal Gazette

Windsor Spitfires coach Rocky Thompson will be counting on a couple of the Canadiens’ prospects as his team prepares to play in the Memorial Cup after a 43-day layoff.

Defenceman Mikhail Sergachev and left winger Jeremiah Addison emerged as go-to players for Thompson during a season that was marred by injuries to key players.

“The good news is that we’re healthy for the first time this season,” Thompson said as he took time out from what has been a second training camp. The Spitfires were bounced by the London Knights in a gruelling seven-game Ontario Hockey League playoff series that ended on April 4. They get a second chance as the host of the Memorial Cup and will play the winner of the QMJHL final between Saint John and Blainville-Boisbriand in the tournament’s opening game on May 18. (Saint John led the best-of-seven series 2-0 heading into Game 3 Tuesday night in Blainville.)

“Having that much time off is a challenge, but the kids have handled it well,” said Thompson. “We had a little time off and then we got back to work.”

The Spitfires broke their preparation into three phases. There were three weeks of hard work — running up hills, lifting weights and spin classes led by the coach. That was followed by a tapering off period and a third phase will consist of game preparation. The University of Windsor Lancers and some local players have provided the opposition in exhibition games.

“Our goal is to come out strong in our first game,” said Thompson. “One advantage we’ll have is that we’ll be well rested and the other teams could be coming off some tough series.”

Thompson said Sergachev has made great strides in his second season in North America.

“He didn’t join us until November because he started the season with the Canadiens, and then we lost him again for the world juniors,” said Thompson. “But he had a strong second half. We asked him to play a greater role defensively. We had the best penalty-killing record ever and he was a part of that.”

The Spitfires’ reliance on Sergachev increased early in the new year when Logan Stanley, Winnipeg’s first-round draft choice last June, suffered a knee injury.

“Mischa (Sergachev) became our shutdown guy,” said Thompson. “We used him in every role and he played like a guy who’s going to be a No. 1 defenceman for the Canadiens.”

Sergachev joined the Canadiens for their final regular-season game on April 8 in Detroit and played well after some first-period jitters.

“I hadn’t played an NHL game since the beginning of the season, but I was more comfortable as the game went on,” said Sergachev. “My goal is to make the Canadiens next season and I know I’ll be ready for camp.”

The scouting report on Addison when he was drafted said he was responsible in his own end, which is always a virtue in the Canadiens’ organization. But Addison has shown steady improvement in his offensive game and Thompson described him “as our most consistent scorer.”

He had 24 goals and 19 assists in 51 regular-season games and five goals in five playoff games. He missed some playoff time after he received a game misconduct and a subsequent two-game suspension for cross-checking London’s Max Jones early in Game 2.

“He missed (19 games) with injuries, but he played in all situations,” said Thompson.

“I thought I might have been drafted higher, but it’s not something I worried about,” said Addison. “I don’t think it matters where you’re drafted; the important thing is what you do on the ice.”

Addison joined the St. John’s IceCaps at the end of last season and earned an assist and a plus-one rating in four games. When the Canadiens didn’t offer him a contract, he elected to join Windsor as an over-age junior. The gamble paid off just prior to the playoffs when the Canadiens handed him a three-year entry level deal.

phickey@postmedia.com

twitter.com/zababes1

Photo: Dennis Pajot/Getty Images

 

2,716 Comments

  1. Le Revenant says:

    New thread folks. Ryan White’s silver medal is safe.

  2. Det. Sgt. Jocko says:

    https://www.hockeyfeed.com/nhl-news/trade-rumor-montreal-gm-has-reportedly-had-enough-with-two-promising-players

    ..and I have had enough of this guy pretending to be an intelligent human being. Quitting on the kid’s while maintaining loyalty to veterans is absolutely asinine in today’s NHL. Maybe these guys will fetch us Plecks Lite, Nugent Hopkins. This team is becoming a joke.

    Wickenheiser was the wost number one overall pick, with all things considered.

    I don’t mind Weber, but PK is a better fit in the skating style the Canadiens seemed to be. What I would not give to find another Robinson, or another Langway.

    I don’t want to see Maurice tonight, I want to see The Rocket!

  3. Arnou Ruelle says:

    Just for us to keep in mind, here is the schedule for next month leading up to July 1st:

    June 21st – Expansion Draft

    June 23 and 24 – NHL Draft

    July 1st (Canada Day) – Free Agency Signings + Trades

    Here are the Habs’ picks in this years entry draft:

    Round 1 – #25
    Round 2 – #56 and #58
    Round 3 – #87
    Round 5 – #149

    Rounds 4, 6, and 7 are picks traded to LA, TBL, and Winnipeg respectively.

  4. Danno says:

    Boucher forgot you don’t get a loser point in the playoffs. Playing not to lose is the surest way not to advance to the next round.

    ________________________________________

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

  5. mrhabby says:

    Send Nate and 3rd round pic for Evander Kane.

  6. DipsyDoodler says:

    OK, since we’re going for the record I’m gonna talk whiskey.

    I admit it – I fell for that whole bourbon fad – I still like Bourbon by the way – and even got into Rye, over-peated Scottish whiskeys, Japanese whiskeys, boutique whiskeys. All of them damn fine.

    But your Macallan 12 is still the best dram out there.

    Not even close.
    —–

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Once described thus by Kingsley Amis: the only drink you want after it is more of it.’

      —–

    • johnnylarue says:

      Ya know, I got a cheap ass bottle of McClelland’s Islay for my cheap ass birthday last year from a cheap ass friend of mine. I finally got desperate enough and cracked it last night.

      For a scotch that’s presumably aged for about as long as a pint of artisanal ice cream lasts in my freezer, it’s smooth as hell! And delicious. And it’s loaded with alcohol–which is something your body needs anyway!

  7. dickanddanny says:

    Anyone on here know why Montreal picks 27th in this year’s Draft?

    Behind teams such as Pittsburgh, and Anaheim who finished with more points. Or, after others like the NYR and Ottawa who went further in the play-offs.

    Any ideas?

    “back to you Dick”

    • dickanddanny says:

      Sorry, disregard the question above. I realized afterwards the article I was reoffering to was written in January, not this week. Damn Google!

      “back to you Dick”

    • Arnou Ruelle says:

      @ dickanddanny

      The Habs are picking 25th on round-1. The St. Louis Blues are taking 27th from the Caps (WSH traded this pick + a conditional 7th round pick as a pckg. trade for Kevin Shattenkirk).

  8. JR-sHabs01 says:

    I’ll take PK for a $1000 Alex.

    I’m sure some of you have had restraining orders put on you by ex girlfriends. The trade was 11 months ago. Time to mosey on down the trail called life.

  9. Ian Cobb says:

    Montreal Canadiens We Are Fans Summit | Facebook
    http://www.facebook.com
    Montreal Canadiens We Are Fans Summit, Montreal, QC.

    Our Fan Summit weekend in Mtl. starts with our meet and greet on the Friday eve.with a light lunch buffet in the Hotel banquet hall and guest speakers.
    Sat. morning group discount breakfast.
    Tour of the Bell Center and watch team skate.
    Pre -game dinner and The Charity Raffle at the banquet hall.
    Game at the Bell Center.
    After game celebration at Hurley’s Irish Pub, 2nd floor!

    We have 4 former pro players, 1 former pro coach and 1 NHL executive joining us this year so far.
    We will announce the date and price of the Summit game tickets once the league puts out it’s new schedule in early summer.
    Then I will pick out a Saturday night game for us. I will also sign a contract with the hotel for discounted rooms and banquet hall for the meet and greet Friday evening. Discounted group breakfast etc.
    Once we pick a date everyone that is going must get their payment to me in the form of a money order right away, because we only have a very short window to order our tickets before they are sold to the general public.
    Looks to be a lot of interest for this years Fan Summit. So watch for my announcement right after the new schedule comes out. I can get all the game tickets that we need, but I have a very small window to order them for us. So don’t be late.

    More News to follow in the coming months, once we know our dates and times. Families and everyone are welcome. Plan for a wonderful weekend. You only pay for your bar bill, game ticket and your discounted hotel room.
    Ian Cobb

  10. veryhabby says:

    Expansion draft info:

    Bishop confirmed his agent had some talks with LV, but at the end they decided to go “younger”. Bishop said they plan to be a very competitive team asap.

    Now that may be LV being nice to Bishop…you know the whole “its not you it’s me” break up line (not that I have ever used it). But at 30 yrs, he isn’t that old.

    Sounds like they want to be a young team. So we can forget the whole Pleks or Emelin being taken? Maybe more like Hudon or Davidson? I think the Leafs are the flavor of the year, and teams now all focusing on being a young team and assuming they will succeed right away.

    Anyways, just thought the whole revelation that they want to go young is interesting. Even in net, where a vet goalie may help his team stay more competitive then a guy who hasn’t had time yet to establish himself as an NHL starter.

    • dickanddanny says:

      Can they select Hudon? I thought you had to have played so many games at the NHL level (40 one season or 70 in two seasons) to be exposed ? He’s played 6 games in the NHL in total.

      “back to you Dick”

    • thesenator18 says:

      Vegas first of all cannot go all young they need to be at the cap floor,they will need some big contracts,and trying to be good in your first year is stupid,it is a super strong draft in 2018,you would think they would want a top 5 pick.

  11. HabinBurlington says:

    In seeing the headlines speculating that Yakupov may not get qualified by the Blues this summer (thus making him UFA) has Yak now become the biggest #1 bust in the past 20 years?

    96 – Chris Phillips
    97 – Joe Thornton
    98 -Vinny Lecavalier
    99 – Patrick Stefan
    00 – Rick Dipietro
    01 – Ilya Kovalchuk
    02 – Rick Nash
    03 – Marc Andre Fleury
    04 – Alex Ovechkin
    05 – Sidney Crosby
    06 – Erik Johnson
    07 – Patrick Kane
    08 – Steven Stamkos
    09 – John Tavares
    10 – Taylor Hall
    11 – Ryan Nugent-Hopkins
    12 – Nail Yakupov
    13 – Nathan MacKinnon
    14 – Aaron Ekblad
    15 – Connor McDavid
    16 – Austin Matthews

    Honourable mention – Alexandre Daigle (93)

    http://www.thehockeynews.com/news/article/yakupov-determined-to-stay-in-the-nhl-but-who-will-take-a-shot-on-him

    • veryhabby says:

      WEll Dipietro and Johnson nothing too great ethier

      But from that list, ya he doesn’t look very good.

      I would have assumed more #1 busts, was surprised to see all successful. Phillips, Johnson, dipietro, Stefan, and possible Yak are probably the worse #1 picks on that list, but some had decent careers…just not what you think of when one says #1 overall

    • habcertain says:

      I would take a flier on Yak, what do we have to lose with little options up front.

    • johnnylarue says:

      Stopped conveniently just shy of Daigle, I see…

      And based on that list: absolutely.

      OT: Rick DiPietro picked first overall?? Holy paradigm shift, Burlyman!

    • mrhabby says:

      Yak..a partial result of such bad management in Edmonton.

  12. kerrgte says:

    This column has not changed for days.

    Are those who write for this site completely bereft of ideas ?

    Are those who write for this site totally out of the loop ?

    Only the posters seem to have ideas on what’s going on with the club.

    Come on you guys, pretend you have a clue about your newspaper beat !!

    • bwoar says:

      I’ll cut ’em some slack. This thread TBH is disconcertingly lacking in discussion of Sergachyov. And way, way too many posts about Guy Boucher and his band of boring Ottawal Senadiens.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Would be quite something if Sergachev has a stellar Memorial Cup and the Spitfires were to win it. I wonder how much smarter that would make MB look? Just the same, if Windsor doesn’t win it, and Sergachev is only good in his role, how much stupider will that make MB here at the Commentariat where fickle is never a constant in stylistic postings.

        • bwoar says:

          Gotta think MB is crossing his fingers for a good performance too. I already think MB is only half-smart, half-stupid, so in other words pretty much as good as all of us when it comes to his job.

    • Danno says:

      Cutbacks at PostMedia which owns the Gazette mean less content in the paper and online.

      ________________________________________

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

    • Le Revenant says:

      Stu Cowan and Pat Hickey basically work 7 days a week during hockey season. Let’s not begrudge them catching up on their days off when there are no Canadiens-related news to speak of. They’ll need to cover the expansion draft, the entry draft and UFA signings in July, they’ll be back to the grind pretty soon.

      • DipsyDoodler says:

        There have been at least two Brendan Kelly columns since this article was posted. They have material…

        —–

        • bwoar says:

          Mercifully not dumping Kelly articles here

          • DipsyDoodler says:

            His latest one: “Habs have now lost the Subban trade” was from way out of left field.

            —–

          • HabinBurlington says:

            I’m sorry I missed that one. I’m grateful for the showing of mercy. Let the Spitfires live for the summer if it spares us the other garbage.

          • DipsyDoodler says:

            And sometimes there is such a thing as too far outside the box e.g. : “Habs Need a Number One Centre”.

            —–

          • Luke says:

            Hm. Now that one might be worth a look, Dispy.
            A Number One centre, eh? How utterly charming. It’s so provincial.

    • The_Rocket_Returns says:

      So how much have you paid for what you read on HIO? Or do you just expect to get stuff for free and then whine when you don’t?

      … Koivu to Zednik to Kovalev …

    • RightNyder says:

      I gather my information elsewhere, and come here because of the passion and intellect of the commentariat.

      And to post silly GIFs
      http://imgur.com/cr17ehu

    • Max says:

      I think they’re waiting for Puh K Subban to do something noteworthy in a game and then a new PK adulation thread will go up quicker than a man can say Jack Robinson.We’ll also get to hear about how the habs lost the trade and how Weber is slow and washed up.Can’t wait.PK has been solidly average for a few games now but if he scores tonight or does a fancy spinorama then there’ll be at least three new threads by morning.

      • The_Rocket_Returns says:

        You forgot thread about how if Shea Weber ever has an overtime point in a conference championship game, half the people here will need to change their sheets — but when PK does it, he’s just solidly average.

        … Koivu to Zednik to Kovalev …

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      I think they reason that anyone who is talking about hockey between elimination from the playoffs and opening day is a bit nuts.

      —–

  13. cbhabsfan says:

    The upcoming expansion draft is creating opportunities for teams that need high-end talent, which dovetails neatly with teams that won’t be able to protect all the high-end talent they have under contract.

    If they don’t want to lose these top 4 defencemen or top 6 forwards for nothing to Las Vegas, then they’ll have to make deals with teams that can pay them back either in first- or second-year players of the same quality that won’t have to be protected – and there are precious few of those around the league that any sane GM is willing to give up – or their equivalent in draft picks and prospects.

    I’m not saying give up Sergachev, but this might be the best way, short of signing a legitimate top six forward in free agency, to get some much-needed offence for this lineup without subtracting good offensive players from an already thin forward group.

    We may not have a lot of depth on our NHL roster to acquire another top six forward from a team worried about losing a player for nothing in the expansion draft, but we have the picks and prospects (again, none named Sergachev) to get a deal done that would be fair for both sides.

    The Playstation deals that are constantly being brought up here just won’t get it done. NHL GMs won’t take garbage for gold, no matter how high you pile the garbage.

    • RightNyder says:

      (Martin Erat pokes his head up…)

    • The_Rocket_Returns says:

      There was also that whole “Shipyachov asked to play for us” thing. I still can’t wrap my head around that. Obviously Bergie had his reasons, good or bad, but to my eyes he just passed on a skilled top-six center who wouldn’t have cost any assets and was asking for very reasonable money — and to make it weirder, Bergie tried to get him a season ago, so it’s not like Bergie doesn’t think he can hack it. So curious to know the whole story here.

      I really hope they sign Hanzal. 30 years old, so not young but not old either, and he’s big, a bit mean, defensively solid and should rack 40-50 points if he stays healthy. That’s a big if, but he’s the best center on the market and the closest thing to what the Habs need most.

      … Koivu to Zednik to Kovalev …

      • cbhabsfan says:

        Coincidently, Minnesota is one of a handful of teams that are so deep in defence that they have to make a decision on whether they want to protect seven forwards and three defencemen, or four forwards and four defencemen.

        If they go the 4/4 route, there will be better than Hanzal available from the Wild’s starting lineup. And Hanzal’s a UFA anyway, though he’s technically Wild property for the the purposes of setting up expansion draft protection lists.

      • Loop_G says:

        That would have been a huge risk. That much salary to a player that has never proven themselves in the NHL.

  14. veryhabby says:

    In 30 thoughts, Friedman quotes the new Buff GM praising Gonchar for his work with the D in Pits. That coach Martin does the x/0, pairings, TOI etc but its Gonchar’s work with the young Dmen…showing them stick positions etc.

    I know Markov will play for a bit longer, but I wonder if he would take on a role like that with MTL after he is done playing. His smarts are incredible. Just no idea tho if he is a “teacher” type

  15. JR-sHabs01 says:

    There is no new news because the local scribes are free lancing down in Nashville.
    “Stu’s News”,seems to be hit over at the Tennessean.

  16. HabinBurlington says:

    Given there is no news of a Sly Lefebrve contract extension yet, I am want to believe that indeed MB is looking at the likes of Ducharme, Bouchard or Tourigny as the inaugural coach of the Rocket.

    Wonder why this is isn’t a question of importance for the local scribes? I would have thought this might have been something different and of interest to follow or ask about.

  17. JR-sHabs01 says:

    So, we’re the Spitfires able to count on the Hab prospects?
    HIO feels a little like CNN, big headline, no follow up.

  18. bwoar says:

    @ New

    “At some point we have to realize that Montreal has what it wants, builds what it wants, and despite fan quibbles is satisfied with what it has wrought.”

    That is likely to be the most important point made in this entire thread.

    • myron.selby says:

      It’s also nonsense, but other than that it’s ok.

    • on2ndthought says:

      I may be taking this entirely out of context (it’s lunch, I have maybe half an hour, so I can’t contexualize the comment), but:

      Horsefeathers! If you’re implying the organization is, or has ever been satisfied with anything short of a cup victory, you are badly underselling the people i have seen involved with the organization.

      It was the desire to win that led Gainey to his trading away the future for short term assets. It is the dearth of assets that has Bergevin acting patiently (as patiently as he can: Dwight King and Tomas Vanek notwithstanding).

      Other organizations feel the pressure to succeed, but nowhere is that pressure felt more keenly than in Montreal. I don’t think any manager of the Habs has ever been complacent. In MB we finally have a GM ready to build patiently. It is time for us to show the same ability, because we have seen the result of impatience, and it is not acceptable.

      • RightNyder says:

        I’d agree about the need for fan patience, I’m just not so sure about what’s being built here.
        Patience when you’re in Chicago or Edmonton or Toronto and sucking mightily for years and gathering top-3 picks is one thing.

        Patience is a little more difficult to come by when you watch your man let his core get older and older (and getting a chance to see that it’s the worst team in the league without one particular player) and not really have the horses coming in behind.

      • bwoar says:

        “Other organizations feel the pressure to succeed, but nowhere is that pressure felt more keenly than in Montreal.”

        That’s the actual delusion here, O2T. Yes, that is precisely the point I’m getting at.

        The Canadiens winning the Stanley Cup is a “nice to have” for the org at this point, decades ago the urgency to win a Cup guttered and flamed out. Like the better part of the league, the franchise is a fun plaything for ownership that happens to be a decent to good investment.

        • RightNyder says:

          This is an interesting point.
          Every organization wants to win.

          But the angst over not winning every year exists only the minds of old goobers like me. If you are a Habs fan 35 or younger, you at best remember the ’93 Cup as a little kid, and most likely think the runs in 2010 and 2014 were awesome.

          The media scrutiny in Canadian cities remains enormous, but I think the level of expectation in Montreal is nowhere near what it was.

          100 points and a playoff round win, with some extra playoff revenue in the coffers, is now a successful season.

          • bwoar says:

            I can only remember ’86 and ’93. I think hockey watching has changed dramatically for me since I was a kid, and cheering for the Canadiens was all that I cared for. I’m still about the crest, not the nameplate (cough *subbaniacs* cough) but I watch hockey from all over, not just NHL, for enjoyment.

            I get to follow the Jets, the Canadiens and soon the Golden Casinos in the NHL. With a smattering of Canucks, Stars, Nashville, and other teams my friends like. But I like watching KHL and WHL a lot, and get out to MJHL games in my neighbourhood too so the kids can see a live game. The odd free AHL Moose tickets appear once in a while.

            Which goes to say, I don’t personally angst over failing to win the Cup, or the possible horror of another 20 years no closer, because I don’t think the owners do, and I don’t watch hockey solely to experience that next time the CH lifts the Cup.

    • The_Rocket_Returns says:

      It’s so true.

      All Molson needs is a middle-of-the-pack team that doesn’t miss the playoffs on consecutive years. The money will just keep pouring in. And all he needs from Bergevin is dependable mediocrity, a professional appearance and an absence of scandal.

      … Koivu to Zednik to Kovalev …

  19. Mavid says:

    144

    º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º

    Weed Wacker – and Flamethrower Grandma Smurf

    • bwoar says:

      “Not surprisingly, Botterill’s priority is the defence. “It’s not rocket science,” he said. “We have to address the depth of our D core. Rasmus Ristolainen is a great young player, but we have to help manage his minutes. It’s important. We’re going to look at every possible [method of addition].” He wouldn’t discuss specifics, but the organization has to make a decision on Evander Kane. Do they let him play out his contract, re-sign him or try to move him for that defender?”

      This makes me laugh, thinking that the Jets will have Tyler Myers back next year.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        True, but where does he slot back in? Trouba made a case for himself to be #2. Any chance they ever switch Big Buff to the left side to make room? Given he roams all over the ice anyway?

        And why is some new GM going to concentrate on his Defence? Only incompetent GM’s do this.

        Hope you are well horsey.

        • bwoar says:

          Good to see you Burly, hope the summer’s treating you well.

          I’d put early money on Buff-Morrissey and Trouba-Myers. But your point on Buff is spot on, really. The guy simply *is*, I don’t think it would matter where you play him as opposed to who he wants to play with.

    • Dust says:

      Interesting in number 2 thought

      The Wild also need to re-sign Mikael Granlund. As an exec from another team put it, “It may not be their first choice, but if you make it worth their while, it’s possible.” All GM Chuck Fletcher would say is, “We are actively listening… on everything.”

      MB should make a call

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Appears Elliot doesn’t consider the Montreal Canadiens team important enough to include when discussing gaps between top scorers and the next highest scorer.

      Max 8th place in league followed by Byron in 78th place.

  20. Danno says:

    Sullivan should get the Pens to try this out against the Sens and expose Boucher’s trap system…

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4VV1PrbkK3E

    ________________________________________

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

  21. adamkennelly says:

    given the lack of UFA options for a #1 C MB needs to pull off a big move to save his job….offer sheet an RFA is the only way to go…

    he’ll lose any trade he makes…I say that because our needs are obvious and our assets are below peak values.

    • bwoar says:

      I don’t see any scenario right now where Bergevin is in danger of losing his job.

      I may not agree personally, but I can’t imagine M. Molson pondering his GM’s future right now. The early exit, from an ownership POV, isn’t the giant disaster it looks like for us as fans.

      A competent summer, with no new centres but an extension for Carey Price, will suffice for job security of the current regime. I am positive of that, at least. The only way the guy loses his job is if the goaltender walks.

      Molson & Co are still stuck in the old school “win with outstanding goaltending” model of the previous era of hockey.

  22. DipsyDoodler says:

    You know who should get their number retired?

    The person who invented the rotating meat grill, otherwise known as a vertical rotisserie, sometimes referred to as: shwarma, doner, gyros, or, in Montreal, Shish Taouk.

    The ability to shave the perfectly grilled meat so that every bite or every sandwich contains only browned meat is genius.

    —–

  23. montreal ace says:

    I don’t consider Boucher to be a genius as a coach, Anderson’s play is the backbone of his strategy along with Karlsson.

  24. Danno says:

    2,606 comments…
    Only 2979 comments to go before breaking the Radulov-Montoya-Redmond thread record.

    ________________________________________

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

  25. New says:

    I loved the shots of the Pittsburg bench last night. Malkin fuming at Kessel, Kessel raging at Malkin, then the two combine for the goal. That is a team.

    Much, much, rather have players snapping at each other than commiserating and saying “Nothing you could do Phil…I’ll try harder, gatorade?”

    Julien got 5 million for 5 seasons so he isn’t going anywhere fast. Montreal’s roster and the Laval roster are built to Therrien specs, the kids haven’t been trained to play anything other than journeyman roles, and that seems to suit Julien’s play not to lose theory as well.

    So it is really nice to see a team play with passion, like the old days of the Canadiens before they became just the Habs.

    Maybe next season Sportsnet and CBC will show more US games.

    • kalevine says:

      Habs can play with passion, as in game 2 comeback. They took it to the Rangers in game 3 and then completely took their foot off the gas in the very winnable game 4. They lack that killer instinct when the Rangers were there to be had. They seemed to be playing as though they were coming out of the 4 games with at least a split, so why push. When you aim low you tend to fall even lower

  26. chilli says:

    I agree with Marc Dumont:
    The greatest failure of MB is the fact that he’s had a pure sniper on a cheap contract for years and hasn’t gone out and paid for a real center.
    Is there a better contract in the NHL?
    He is getting paid as much as Emelin.

    Since 2011: on 5 on 5 goals Max has scored one fewer goal than the #1 guy, Ovechkin… and without a center.
    And he’s played 750 fewer minutes – a gigantic discrepancy.
    What would Max have done with a real center and those 750 minutes?
    And teams can so easily just focus on one guy in the playoffs.
    MB is screwing Max’s career by not getting a center.
    And Max alluded to that in his exit interview.

    It’s popular to blame Max – but man, what a fail for a GM in terms of that contract and his ability to score.

    • myron.selby says:

      It wasn’t lack of a center that did Max in against the Rangers. The guy had more shots than anyone else in the first round – 28 of them. During the regular season his shooting percentage was 13.1. If he’d carried that through it should have meant 3.68 goals against New York. Unfortunately, he put about 25 of those shots right on Lundquist’s crest and they had all the power of a cream puff. I seriously think he got hurt in that first game. His shot just looked completely off.

      And just to complete the picture, Galchenyuk had a 16.3 shooting percentage regular season and 13 shots in the playoffs. Coulda, woulda, shoulda translated to 2.1 goals in the playoffs.

      You add those 2 totals together and we’d be playing Ottawa. Max failed in an epic fashion. I am beginning to think Lafleur was right about him. I can put up with his complete inability to make a pass and his lackadaisical play on many nights. What I can’t forgive is the fact that he doesn’t show up during the playoffs.

      • joeybarrie says:

        For me it isn’t about the number of shots. Its the quality of the shots and where they are coming from. That’s where having a big talented center helps.

      • on2ndthought says:

        Good one, Myron. I saw very little zip on his shots. His skating was OK, so shoulder, rib, something. He still should have potted that breakaway… sigh.

    • New says:

      That is easy for you or Dumont to say but the Habs show no sign of wanting or of developing a center, unless the AHL mark of a center is less than 30 points a season and the closer to 10 the better.

      I think Danault is a fine young man but using him to center Radulov and Pacorietty wastes a lot of firepower. Where Danault is useful is with guys like Carr on the third line. That scrambly, disjointed, half a cycle half a retreat in the opponents zone.

      Pleks is beyond his best before date, and I really think he is finished.

      Galchenyuk, McCarron, guys like that are viewed as fourth line wingers by the organization so they have no future as there are plenty of available journeyman 4th and third line players.

      So to me the question is very much like the Stamkos question. It isn’t whether you have a good center, it is who is your playmaker on each line.

      Who are the playmakers on Montreal, the guys with vision and creativity, who can tell the others where to go and they listen? Who knows, most guys would have been hard pressed to cough up the first name of their line mates by the playoffs.

      Muller I think is the only guy in the entire office or system with experience as a center. It is also apparent Muller is an assistant and not associate coach.

      Now it is possible that guys like Evans or Bitten could come to camp, wow the folks, and win a spot. But if Montreal is full of dull by the script players and Laval is full of clones it stands to reason that next season Lehkonen and they would become journeymen as well.

      At some point we have to realize that Montreal has what it wants, builds what it wants, and despite fan quibbles is satisfied with what it has wrought.

      In other words the Habs are quite happy, always looking to improve, and it is only a small sub-set of fans who are bored.

    • bwoar says:

      He had 9M on the books for the next 1,000 years he had to move first.

  27. Steven Finn says:

    Habs Inside/Out > Hockey Inside/Out
    Dave Stubbs > Stu Cowan

  28. Don Birnam says:

    Fencesurfer.
    The Rapture is today!
    My ticket came in last night.
    I will be Rupturing Pints today.
    Saludos!

  29. Luke says:

    What happened here?
    Did Boucher put the clamp on the comments?

  30. thesenator18 says:

    One center Bergevin can go after is Radek Faksa has upside and size 6’3,Dallas have alot of veteran wingers coming off the books….Sharp,Hemsky,Hudler…….trade Shaw,Byron,Beaulieu for Faksa,Roussel,and the rights to Nichushkin who has 1 more year left on his KHL contract.

  31. Thought of the day before I head out.

    Boucher has destroyed any entertainment factor the Pens could bring to hockey. He is THE most disgustingly technical coach we have ever seen. Even after the Pens scored, the very next shift they would not attack. Had I been coaching, I would have set up a tri-angle in their zone and made that one Sens stand there for 6 minutes as the Pens past it around.

    I hope the Pens can take this team, and prove that system will not work on or most definitely off the ice. Thanks the Hockey Gods he (Boucher) is in Ottawa.

    There’s defensive hockey, and then there’s Barf in a Bag, which is what Boucher has brought to the NHL.

    Pens and Preds would be one exciting series. Skill and Speed, head to head.

    @sholi2000
    Sholi2000.com
    Hockey Is Life, Me and My Boy
    Shane Oliver
    Carey Price Did Not Ask to be a Canadien. He was chosen!

  32. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    RE: expansion drafts dates…basically this:
    “All 30 existing teams must submit their list of protected players by 5 p.m. EDT June 17. Vegas must submit its selections by 5 p.m. June 20, with the announcement of those picks made June 21.”

    So teams must make their deals before settling on their list before June 17th. LV then has 2 days to negotiate with UFAs and unprotected RFAs (so they can sign Rads for example). Whoever they sign counts as the pick from that team. Basically it looks like the Habs will probably still be stuck with Pleks and Emelin’s salaries. Hopefully I’m wrong.

    • chilli says:

      Vegas has a decent shot at putting a semi-decent team together.
      Why does everyone think that will involve Pleks and Emelin? Two, what many think here, pretty useless players for us…
      They have plenty of defensemen and plenty of centers to choose from.


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