The weather is warming up in Montreal, the jazz festival starts soon, and here’s what I was asked by three store clerks who recognized me on the weekend:

“Should the Canadiens keep Jaroslav Halak or Carey Price?”

And the HIO hockey genius answered: “Man, do I LOOK like Pierre Gauthier?”

I don’t. For one thing, I’ve got 100 pounds easy on the Canadiens vegetarian, ultra health-conscious general manager.

But that doesn’t count the weighty decisions he has to make over the next few weeks.

So tell us, Commentariat, what should Gauthier do?


And before answering, please consult the Canadiens’ salary cap situation.

will change when Georges Laraque is bought out today – lineup for his
fre-agent services starts on the left, let’s keep it orderly, as per the
Code – but the Canadiens have 13 players on their NHL roster for a
2010-’11 cap hit of $45 million.

The NHL has not announced the new
cap, but speculation has it coming in at about $58 million.

there’s about $13 million to sign a goaltender or two, Tomas Plekanec, Tom Pyatt,
Dominic Moore, Mathieu Darche, Glen Metropolit and Marc-André Bergeron.

subtract Moore and Metro and add Max Pacioretty ($910,000), Ryan White ($850,000) or Brock Trotter
(an RFA who made $900,000 last season).

Eric Engels has a good
piece on the Plekanec

My opinion: Pleks is outta here. He’ll be 28 in
October, and this is his career crack at a UFA bonanza.

Hometown discount? I call that a tax on stupidity. Pleks’s hometown is Kladno.

There’s a
GM somewhere in this wacky league who’ll pay Pleks $5 million. I don’t
think that general manager is named Pierre Gauthier.

As for the
goaltenders …

I don’t envy Gauthier having to make this

What if they trade Price and he fulfills his immense potential somewhere else?

What if they trade Jaro, whose value never will be higher (but still may lag Price’s), and Price gets off to a rocky start?

You think the Bell Centre boo birds won’t have fresh memories of Jaro carrying the team through two playoff series?

Halak made $800,000 last season. What do you suppose an arbitrator would give him … after Keri Lehtonen gets $10.6 million over three years in Dallas?

It’s not an easy call, like dumping BGL. And what Gauthier does between now and July 1 could shape the future of the franchise.

So have at it, peeps.

Offer up your sage advice.

And please, Priceians, Halakites and neutrals: Try to keep it civil.

•  •  •

Wow! Spector’s list of buyout candidates includes Andrei Kostitsyn.



  1. Albert the monkey says:

    LOL! Never a truer word spoken.

  2. Albert the monkey says:

    Yup… A lot of money. One good year. Yup. So, what do you do if you are Pierre? Tell his agent that we had a guy like Jose and we don’t want to be burned again? It is tough. His agent won’t care about previous flops, he has a winner… Right or wrong the stats don’t lie.

    As for pads, I think it is going to affect every goalie to one extent or another. The one think Jaro has going for him is lateral movement, tracking and foot speed. None of those attributes should be affected to badly by the new regulations. J.S. Giguere on the other hand… 


  3. mike g says:

    The price tag for a certain player has nothing to do with how much room Montreal has left on their cap…

    Just because you think he’s not worth 5 mill, or because the Habs can’t afford him at 5 mill, doesn’t mean Pleks isn’t worth it. I can name you 20 guys easily around the league that aren’t worth what they’re getting paid. The reality is that there are many teams willing to sign Pleks, so his price is high right off the bat. Add that to his great season, and he’s gonna get 5 mill with eyes closed.

    Is Hamrlik worth 5+ mill? What about Simon Gagne, Briere, Timonen, Campbell, Huet, Vokoun, Giguere, Komisarek, Darcy Tucker, Horcoff, Penner, Vanek, Drury, Phaneuf, Lecavalier,  Patrice Bergeron, etc…

    Are any of the players I listed above worth what they’re getting paid? Not really, but they’re all getting over 4 mill$….And none of them finished with more points than Pleks this year. And none of them played with “average” (except Cammy) revolving linemates like Pleks did…

    So if you thaught he wasn’t worth 5 mill, now you know why he is…

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  4. Albert the monkey says:

    You are right. 5 million is a lot to pay a young guy who had a good year. Unfortunately, will he sign a long-term for less? Do we role the dice on him and sign a 1 year qualifying offer? 2 years at 3 million? I am sure his agent has dreams of big money and this year, there are a lot of teams looking for a guy like Halak.

    I really hope he signs for less, but with the cap going up and a lot of teams needing a goalie who can steal a game or two. It might be a hard sell.

    Then there is the good ol’ tried and not very popular offer sheet. It could happen.

  5. Storm Man says:

    When we trade him he will be the next coming of Leclair.

  6. Storm Man says:

    We also had some guy named Jose who won the MVP in 2002 and he is looking for a job now. I hope your not ready to give a guy the keys to the HHOF after one good year. I can give you a list of goaltenders that had one great year. And don’t forget the new pad regulations are in place for this coming season. 

  7. Jonnyboy says:

    “BTW – Has anybody seen Max Pacioretty? Wasn’t he supposed to be the next coming of John Leclair? After he went back to Hamilton, he basicall packed it in.”

    Shoulder injury. Only played a couple of games.

  8. Max_a_million says:


    I think 5 million is too much, there are many teams smothered under 5 million dollar goaltenders in this league.  Theodore was proven after he won the MVP, and that didn’t work out.  Everyone who gets that much money is proven until they bust.

  9. LeNordique says:

    Part of that is based on the fact that the Flyers need to clear some cap space.  The other is that I’m guessing that Paul Holmgren probably thinks that with a better goalie than Leighton between the pipes the Flyers are Cup winners and so he’s in the market for a keeper.

    Granted, the market is flooded with goalies this summer, including some who will be more affordable than Price.  The difference is that Price is the only one of the lot who’s probably more than just a stop-gap or band-aid and (I’m hoping) that GMs will see him as a long-term solution.  I’m hoping that valuation of him will offset/overweigh the question marks about his inexperience.

    Or it won’t.  None of us are GMs after all.  I’ve always wanted to hear what the negotiations in a trade like this sound like.

  10. nickster13 says:

    Just sayin. we all saw who the better goalie was down the stretch, Halak is younger than Leighton, and wasnt a career backup or anything until now, and what other logic would you use other than past events. You cant assume any other way than recent events

  11. pic1983 says:

    Unfortunately, no one seems to understand that.  To blame a goalie for a loss where his team scored 3 goals ore less is ridiculous. 


    I can only think of two games this year (and i watched at least 77 regular season habs games) where Carey price actually cost us a victory.  It was one game against NJ where he let in that floater that bounced off his glove (although that was given up early in the game, plenty of time for the players in front of him to respond) and then the game against pittsburgh where he let in the exact same goal, only in that game it was with 6 minutes left in a tied hockey game. 

  12. Albert the monkey says:

    The question is, in my opinion, who got us to the 3rd round? We barely squeeked into the playoffs, thanks in part to Martin going with Halak down the stretch. It is not to say that Plek is not a keeper, he is. Does he want to play here for what he is worth? You say he is worth 5, I honestly don’t agree. Ultimately it is up to Pierre to decide, but something is going to have to give. If Hammer or Brother Andrei are valued by another team, then go crazy with Plek. The grim reality is Montreal just hasn’t got enough room for another 5 million dollar man.

  13. pic1983 says:

    3.5 over 3 years is lowballing a little IMO.  If he were to sign for 5 years and 3.75 million id gladly take that. 


    The truth of the matter is that any deal should be good for both the player and the team to truly have success.  A player who feels he accepted less than his value will slowly errode your dressing room, and a team who overpays a player will place huge expectations on that player which may or may not be warranted.


  14. pic1983 says:

    Trading away 22 year olds before they ever even come close to their prime is a great way of improving your team…Arent you tired of seeing our young players go off to other teams and have success? Eventually, the “they would never have been as good playing in montreal” excuse gets old. 

  15. pic1983 says:

    Price for Carter AND coburn? You’re giving price WAY too much value IMO. Id do that deal in a heart beat.

  16. mike g says:

    I love how you evaluate players and decide their market worth..

    You say that Halak deserves 5 million, but Pleks only 3. Did you forget that Pleks was our best player for ALL of last year. That’s right, the year where every single player on the Habs missed 2 months due to serious injuries, but Pleks was always there to rack up 70 pts with different linemates every single night (sometimes even AHL’ers, most of the time “sleepy face” AK was with him).

    He killed penalities, played the PP, did everything for the team and never once did I hear a stitch of controversy or negativity surrounding him. Pleks is a keeper, and according to market value he deserves the 5 million you’d give to Halak.

    Remember Steve Mason, that rookie of the year who played through mono 2 years ago and lead CLB to the playoffs. He was incredible, insane, and one of the top goalers that year. Remember how last year went for him? Not good at all, he even lost the starting job at times. It’s extreamly hard to judge a young goaltender like ours and think they will continue playing the same way. You don’t strat drawing a graph and slope the line straight up and think it will go like that..

    Pleks deserves the 5 mill whether you like it or not. I think it’s alot, but his agent has alot of bad contracts in the league to prove his client should get 5 mill. Halak, well he’s going infront of the judge. The jury will decide his contract, and if it’s settle on 4 mill or less he’s staying.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  17. pic1983 says:

    So by your logic, if halak is a proven goalie based on his playoff run and the fact that he only started around 40(?) regular season games, I suppose that makes leighton a proven number 1 goalie as well?

    Halak had a good run in a contract year, everyone needs to chill out with talking about him like hes been a starter for the last 10 years and won 3 cups.

  18. Albert the monkey says:

    The moon is 5 million if you are unproven. Price is unproven. Wouldn’t you agree?

    It says here that Max had 11 points in 18 games in the regular season and 1 in 5 games for the playoffs. Just a bit of a surprise.

  19. Mark C says:

    FYI: Spacek cannot be bought out, well he can be, but he’s signed under a 35+ contract. Meaning that the team gets no cap savings if they buy out the contract as they are on the hook for the full amount, there is zero chance he is bought out. Given the cap space of the team and Markov being out for likely the first two months, I would be mildly shocked if Hammer is bought out, btw his cap hit if bought out is $1.833 mill for the next two years.

  20. Max_a_million says:

    Doesn’t 5 million for a goalie = the moon?


    Pacioretty was injured in Hamilton, not the same as packing it in.

  21. coachdoug says:

    Vinny would bump his head on the Keebler elf tree dressing room our forwards change in…we need St Louis! 😛

  22. Max_a_million says:

    They had a little tournament recently for a big silver cup.  The Canadiens beat the defending champions, and the team that was best this season.  Hal Gill was great, as was the coaching staff.  You should have watched it, it was quite fun!

  23. Albert the monkey says:

    It is important to understand relative trade value in the NHL in
    order to answer the question. Only Pierre knows what Hammer or Price is
    worth. Is Sergei worth anything? Probably not. He hasn’t shown us a
    thing other than his on-again, off-again romance with Gabrovski. Lucky
    to get a 4th round pick for him. Andrei? His salary makes him hard to
    move. Hammer is the same thing. A young team with holes in their D might
    want him, but we would have to take a salary hog as well. Price? Well
    he has value me thinks. San Jose would be the best place for him. Let’s
    face it… Halak punched his ticket this year. He’s a damned good
    goalie, full-stop. Give him his 5 million over 5 years and let’s pull up
    Cedrick Desjardins. He has earned the backup role. Nobody wants Gomez, I
    am damned sure about that. So let’s just leave that one. If he was 3
    million or even 4, he would be moveable, but why would we want to move
    him then. He is a key cog in the leadership that brought Montreal to the
    3rd round. Move him and it might adversly affect the team chemistry,
    which looks to be quite good.

    Pierre Gauthier has two major issues
    to deal with.

    Goalie – Keep Halak. If Price wants the moon or
    just wants out, then trade him out West. If is from the middle of
    nowhere in B.C., so I am sure he would be glad to be closer to his fam.

    – Living proof that Don Cherry is not a complete idiot. For some
    reason, a high percentage of European players just can’t crank it up a
    gear when the playoffs start. Would you if you were playing Omsk? Plek
    is a 3 million a year guy. Good defensively and a 2nd line center on a
    good team. He is going to want more, so trade his negotiation rights to
    the highest bidder, like Burke did to Gainey with Sundin.

    BTW –
    Has anybody seen Max Pacioretty? Wasn’t he supposed to be the next
    coming of John Leclair? After he went back to Hamilton, he basicall packed it in.

  24. davelecave says:

    Mentally shut down?  I would say that he has shown the most mental toughness and composure, by far.  At least he doesn’t do one of the following every goal:

    1) Slowly slide away on his knees with a sad puppy dog face

    2) Sweep the puck out of the net like some punk loser throwing a tantrum


    Speaking of shutting down, how about the Habs getting shut out 3 games against Philly?  Maybe that had a little something to do with us losing to them, and maybe not so much the made-up mental toughness issues.



    Papa Gionta!

  25. Caballero says:

    I agree Pleks can go. On the one hand though, he should settle for less because he is not as much of a factor in the playoffs. Let’s face it. Pleks does not have the grit to sacrifice his face where it hurts, where it counts. He is just not that guy. This is both the reason I want him out and also the reason he could potentially stay because to me a player who does not elevate his game in the playoffs is not worth more than 3-4m

  26. Max_a_million says:

    I don’t disagree on Hammer, but I think his contract, the slow economy, and the cap will make him less attractive than he would be otherwise.  I think we can get a valuable overpaid player in return though.  Hopefully with a short contract.

    Pleks is going to get too many years, and like you say than you are building around him.

  27. nickster13 says:

    Its a no brainer to keep Halak, and the Price is the one you have to think about. You dont trade away your better keeper, thats just silly. Thats like NY saying well lets trade lundquist cuz we could fetch a better return, well no duh, but who do you want in your net at the end of the day

  28. Max_a_million says:

    achilles is a bad injury, so I wasn’t surprised.  I was surprised at how well he played last year.  He would be a bargain center until Leblanc is ready.

  29. G-Man says:

    I would trade Price because of what we’ve been witness to the last 3 seasons. If 09/10 wasn’t enough to convince the Price worshippers, nothing will.

  30. Max_a_million says:

    I think you make a trade if it makes your team better no matter who it is with even gasp Toronto, even gasp Boston, even Gasp Philly.

    Any move to make your team better is a good move.  It didn’t help us shipping Roy out west for bobbles.  

  31. LeNordique says:

    Alright…in my dream world we’d trade Price and parts to NJ for Parise and parts.  Price will probably be ready for prime time once Brodeur is ready to move on and Parise…well, I shouldn’t have to justify that one.  Which is exactly why it won’t happen.  One can dream though…

    More realistically I’d send Price to Philly for Jeff Carter and Braydon Coburn.  Give Pleks a hug and a thank you and wish him the best as he becomes a $5.5 million/year 65 point scorer (I hope my words are tasty in case I have to eat them).  Try to pick up Byfuglien for draft picks or spare parts and watch the Kostytsyns tear up the Minsk nightlife with their new KHL contracts.  Maybe bring in Marty Biron as a buckup, but who knows if that’s affordable.

    Did I consider cap issues?  Only kinda.  I work for the US Senate- we don’t really think about financial concerns up here.

  32. 24 Cups says:

    On a slow day, Mike Boone once again plays the Price/Halak card.  Why not?  It never fails and sure as hell is better than reading posts about soccer.

    If Gauthier does trade a goalie this month, there will be very little left to talk about here on H I/O.  Boucher and The Code are gone and Pleks may not be far behind.  Gomez?  In every new blended family there are always compromises that have to be made.  It’s no different than the new dad putting up with a chippy, self-centred teenage son in order to snag the fresh MILF wife.

    I say we trade for Vinny!!!!! 

  33. Caballero says:

    Spacek stays, he can play on his natural side opposite on of the right Ds. He was a factor in many games especially vs Washington before his virus.

  34. Max_a_million says:

    No way.  Look how many teams are being smothered by overpriced goalies.  

  35. coachdoug says:

    Other than Camalleri I thought Langer was the best free agent deal we have gotten this decade…I think he still has some gas in the tank…Was suprised we kicked him to the curb after the injury…

  36. derfab says:

    Good commentary, though I think we should insist on more for Price and keep him around until someone agrees. Hamrlik is a good hockey player that a contender will want. We should take the best offer. Pleks is a complementary second liner. Too small, not nasty enough to build around. We need a bigger man.

  37. Sholt_C33 says:

    Stewart was “loaned” to a club from the Bulldogs which basically means
    he was traded…but I can’t remember who it was (Chicago?) or for who.
    But no, he is no longer with the Habs organization.

  38. Max_a_million says:

    What about bringing Robert Lang again?

  39. Max_a_million says:

    What happens in December when the team loses three or four games with Price in goal?

  40. coachdoug says:

    It would be sound economics to sign Price…only problem is that if it goes bad like it has before the boo birds will “shat” all over him and that will be the beggining of the end…

    We need a very good goal tender until the blue line gets more solid (It is getting better this year with one PK Subban coming up)…

  41. Max_a_million says:

    I think Stewart is gone.


    You would hurt the team in free agency buying out Spacek.  He is a useful cagey vet.  If you sign free agents and discard them shortly thereafter players will be reticent to come to a place they have already been reticent to come.

  42. Max_a_million says:


    I was thinking about dealing a goalie.  One does have to consider the effect on the goalie that is not dealt.  Unfortunately I think they have to deal Price even though I would rather trade Halak.  The fans will be foolishly relentless on Price if he were to struggle, idiots like Jack Todd would pile on, and that wouldn’t be pretty.  

    I like Plekanec, but I worry about liking him long term.  I also think a team desperate for a center will over pay for him knocking us out of the ball game.

    Keeping Moore would be nice especially if we lose a center Plekanec, he won’t be as cheap as people are bandying about.  

    I would trade Andrei Kostitsyn.  At this point I don’t think he will respond as well as we would like to being separated from his brother.  Although the management and coaching would have more insight on this than me, and they might think otherwise which would be difficult to argue with.

    I would try to trade Hamrlik as well, knowing that we would have to suck up something expensive in return.  If we could save a million I would be tickled.  We have enough defenceman to manage.  I really wish management would let O’Byrne play.  It’s not the end of the world if screws up, but he has to get a chance to play.  The guy looks quite good often.

    Pacioretty never got a chance to do the things he needed to do in Hamilton, so I would play him in Hamilton this season.  The Devils do such a good job of seasoning their players before calling them up with good success.  

    Maybe AK, Price for Martin St. Louis or Jeff Carter … probably expecting too much, but it would be nice.  It would be funny to see the reaction to use getting smaller with St. Louis, but I think it would be a very effective line up.  Sometimes it the size of the fight in the dog.  Throw someone big and nasty between him and Cammalleri.

  43. coachdoug says:

    SD…your plan would be a thing of beauty…only problem is the only man who would take on Gomez’s albatross contract is now a retired GM :}

  44. sh00n says:

    Halakheads will jump on you for it but I agree with you. Price had better stats in losing efforts than some all-star calibur goalies did. Fact is, most of the games he played this year, he needed a shutout to get the W. Halak didn’t.

  45. Dylan Steinberg says:

    metropolit gone, pleks gone,either halak or price traded, hamrlik bought out, spacek bought out, and the kostitsyns traded , the rest of the players will stay and jeff carter and st louis or horton will be traded to us along with some key free agent pick ups

    by the way dose anyone know if greg stewRT IS STILL ON ARE TEAM


  46. sh00n says:

    We have to keep both, but if I had to choose I’d rather hold on to Carey because
    A) Jaro has more value
    B) Jaro is going to be more expensive
    C) Jaro’s ceiling is exactly what we saw – an unbelievable goalie who can do spins on his head and win entire series, but can also mentally shut down after a few bad goals, which happened more consistently in Philly than Washington of Pittsburgh. I think Carey has all the potential to be even better if we give him the chance.

    In an ideal world, we would re-sign Pleks, Lapierre, both goalies, Moore, and Pyatt, and trade out Hamrlik with the Sisters. I’d love to bring in guys like Nathan Norton, Patrick Sharp and Buffy. The last two would asbolutely require a goalie +, but I’d do it in an instant to land those two.

  47. habs4_25th says:

    Let’s look at this realistically, Halak’s agent is a crack head and he’ll want some outrageous price for him, I say if that is the case we trade him for the big power forward, as Price might not carry this team yet, his talent isn’t far off from Halak ( yes it was this year but he was the previous year before injury, he was in great form) will not be asking for a huge raise just yet.  as for Metro would love to have him, but can be replaced with younger and cheaper players.  Keep Darche and Moore, very good supporting cast.  Pleks I say offer him 3.5/yr for 3 years if he doesn’t want that then let him walk, we gave him a fairly good raise after a crappy season so I think that the team has been generous to him.  I think if you can’t get Pleks for that price then you trade Halak to get that bigger centreman for the second line.  Everyone has there own opinion, this is just mine don’t jump on me for what I think.

    “To you from failing hands we throw the torch. Be it yours to hold high.”

  48. coachdoug says:

    Curse you Glen Sather!  Indirectly you have put us in this position…that 3 million we are overpaying Gomez may be the difference between a legit cup contender and “Meh”…

    I say let Price go and sign Halak for sure…if Price blossoms so be it…Halak has blossomed for real and we need to keep him…

    I think we will lose Plek because of the Gomez situation…we get an older 2nd line center way over-priced vs. a younger solid second line center a little over priced…

    The UFA market is never the key…you draft and develop Cup teams and then you augment the missing piece or two with free agents ( I spell H-o-s-s-a)…

    I got a bad feeling about this summer…the Cap wall BG put us up against was going to haunt us later and I think it will be this summer…

  49. havok says:

    Biron yes, Mason had a career year, so he will ask for too much, I have a weird feeling Theo or Brion will back up whomever the Habs decide to keep…

  50. Max_a_million says:


    I like Gomez and Plekanek, but I wonder if Plekanek is redundant on this team.  It would be nice to have someone with more size who scores more.  Of course I am sure every team is in line for guys that score more with size, and I don’t think those type of players make it to free agency.  It worries me to go long term with Plekanek, even though I think he is the best center available.

  51. Max_a_million says:

    Pleks is not taking 3 million.  This is his livelyhood, he will take the money just like all of us would.

  52. Max_a_million says:

    Kovalchuck wants what 9 million, that’s all of our cap space.  We have not realistic shot at him.

  53. HFX-HabFan says:

    MAB, Metro, and Darche are likely gone.  Subban, Pacioretty and White replace them.  That’s easy and done with.  Moore can be brought back for 1 to 1.5 million.  Aside from the goalies, the other RFAs will get very modest (if any) raises. 

    The key to bringing back Plekanec is moving Hamrlik.  We have to find a team that will take him on.  Gauthier should be working the phones to any listeners:  “Hammer stepped up in Markov’s absence, he’s a great mentor for younger D, he is a great guy to have on your second pairing.  He comes off the books next summer, so if your team is out of contention you can move him at the deadline and salvage a draft pick or a prospect.”

    I still am putting forward the somewhat unpopular notion that we should deal Halak because a) his value is fairly high right now, b) his agent is going to command big bucks, c) teams that need goaltending will look at his playoff/Olympic success, d) I still hold that Price has the higher upside and really just needs a veteran goalie to mentor/platoon with him.

    I’ve floated out other deals in the past involving names like Nathan Horton and David Backes.  We need that type of forward to help out our top six.  If Plekanec hits the market on July 1, Boone is right, he’s as good as gone because someone will throw more money at him than we can.  If he leaves, we still need to move the Kostitsyns and Hamrlik and even Halak to bring in two forwards how can fit in to our top six, and then sign a cheap veteran goalie (Biron? Mason?). 

  54. volcano62 says:

    I would keep both Halak and Price for another year (if we can afford that)

    Big mistake teams make is playing their #1 goalie for 70+ games during the season. Come playoff time they are too tired to make it far. Price and Halak should play about 40 games each. I remember Bryan Hayward playing 25+ games easy when he split net duties with Roy.

    I would also like to add that Plekanec can be replaced easily with a bigger center. BUT if he is willing to stay for less than 3M then i’d keep him.

    Go Habs Go!

  55. _Habsoloutly_ says:

    As for Pleks, I say you wait till free agency hits,  make a hard play for Kovulchuk, if you can’t get him resign Pleks to whatever crazy contract his agent will be looking for but try to work in part of it as playoff bonuses so maybe we can get him to produce some offence in the playoffs.

  56. _Habsoloutly_ says:

    I think both goalies will be signed to fair market contracts.  Then, if and when PG gets an offer he can’t refuse (like the godfather quote?)  he will trade one.

  57. Offensive DMan says:

    Thinking that we have immediate holes to fill, and one of our goalies is the best way to do it.  They will both be #1s somewhere, sometime and by keeping both, we will not improve. They have value now to fill some of our gaps.

    And in this division, or the NHL for that matter, to remain the same is just not a great strategy given the way progressive teams are setting themselves up year over year.

  58. TomNickle says:

    You keep Halak if he gets awarded $5 million for next season via arbitration?

  59. rogieshan says:

    Plekanec is a solid 2nd-line centreman. Unfortunately, we’re already paying for one in Gomez and his 7.3 mil/per for the next four years. Time to go young on the 3rd & 4th line with Paciorety, Pyatt, White, Desharnais, Trotter and Maxwell. Use the money saved to pursue a forward upfront: Eric Fehr, Derrick Brossard, Ryan Clowe, Patrick Sharp, Dustin Penner, David Legwand…       

  60. Habsrule1 says:

    I think they would rather have Halak or Price than Ellis, and they need to shed some salary. they would rather get rid of Briere, but it’s unlikely anyone would take that contract, despite his playoff success. If they’re going to get a good goalie anyway, why not try to improve our team in the process?

    Pleks is a nice little player, but he’s no Jeff Carter.

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

  61. RockinRey says:

    You sign both goaltenders. They are assets. Pleks is an asset. From time to time guys will walk away for nothing as a UFA…but the Habs should see if they can give a team exclusive rights to negotiate with Pleks even if it is a late round pick. They need to manage the assets better. Surely they new Pleks was going to walk away. Couldn’t a trade have been arranged? The fan reaction at the time could be no worse than getting nothing for him now.

    I envision Pleks as a regular season scoring machine . Okay stats, 70 pts or so. Which back in the day was cause for people to say Lafleur had lost it.

    If Pleks walks then the Habs  have to go out and get a bona fide number one center. They are okay on the back end but really as I have maintained all along the cupboard is bare. The brothers K add nothing substantial and cannot be counted on to elevate the Habs beyond a bubble team. It is a little alarming to think that when you go down the roster the habs have some great journeymen.

  62. HabFanSince72 says:

    The Sedins wanted to stay together, so you could argue it wasn’t so much a hometown discount as a realization that they would have to be split up to get Hossa-level money.

    And anyway $30M isn’t bad.


  63. HabFanSince72 says:

    I agree with whoever thinks we should avoid giving Philly a good goalie. In any case, they  might try to get one through free agency (e.g. Dan Ellis), so why would they give up Carter?

    Trading Price could be a big mistake. He is only 22. Remember Ryan Miller became a starter at 25 and a top goalie at 27.

    Pleks is worth $4-5M (same salary as Patrice Bergeron). The problem is: might somone pay more?

    My advice is more conservative:

    1. Keep both keepers.

    2. Sign Plekanec (if he signs).

    That’s it.


  64. Habsrule1 says:

    I must have been dreaming because I thought Hammer & Spacek were heroic when Markov was injured. The beginning was tough cause they were playing out of their realm, but they really got it together and they were also key in shutting down Ovechkin.

    I still think Hammer should be traded, but I think he may actually be tradeable to a team looking for veteran defense presence, but that is not as easy as i make it sound.

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

  65. sisu says:

    Hometown discount? I call that a tax on stupidity.

    Wouldn’t it be sweet to have a couple of star players as stupid as the Sedins?

  66. says:

    If this site had the big thumbs up thumbs do there would be a lot of down thumbs.  Sorry I don’t have time to rebut your opinion.


    They Call Me Shane

  67. says:

    I love Gomez and Price, but if they got us two second line players that would be a great trade.  Not going to get a first line player in that deal.

    They Call Me Shane

  68. Habsrule1 says:

    Coaching-Habs get the furthest in the playoffs in almost 20 years and the coach had nothing to do with it. This story is getting so old.

    Hal Gill-Probably our best defenseman in the entire playoffs.

    Bergeron-I like him as a 7th D-Man, but can’t really argue much on this one.

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

  69. Offensive DMan says:

    A nice thought, but that particular team is REALLY going to have to believe in Price as the next big thing to do that.

    I don’t think that Gomez is the most pressing problem we have, although I do not like his contract either.

  70. says:

    I agree.  No way should anyone have to pay for a one hit wonder.  Tim Thomas!!!!

    If he turns out to be a the greatest little fella on ice than we missed the boat and oh well.  That’s hockey.

    There’s a FA out there that can fill his position.

    They Call Me Shane

  71. SmartDog says:

    >I don’t buy into the Price-as-thoroughbred theory.

    Yeah, but can you bake bread?

    … I agree with your post.

    Not signing or trading Pleks = yet another missed opportunity.

  72. LTHF says:

    Here,s at least four reasons why the Habs cant win if things remain the status quo:

    Coaching–Martin and Perrins  too old for coaching young upcoming players, they blew it by losing Boucher. So theres 2 reasons, there are others in the NHL that should call it quits, because hockey today has passed them by.

    Hal gill: The premier give away artist in the league>.Very weak defensively, cant clear the puck and very weak along the boards despite his size. People talk about his shot blocking, well if I was 6 ft 7 in, and stood in front of the net  some shots would havde to hit me. NO SHOT.

    Beregeron, another give away artist,  terrible defensively, good skater with a good shot but that dont make up for the turnovers that he creates.

    Replace those 4 and things can only get better.



  73. SmartDog says:

    Find someone who a) needs a good goalie and a 1st or 2nd line center and b) has cap space. 

    Give them Price IF they’ll also take Gomez and take a big 1st or 2nd line center back or other high level player(s) to trade for the big center. 

    In other words, turn our goaltending assets into more cap space and making us bigger up the middle.


    Not signing or trading Pleks = yet another missed opportunity.

  74. Habsrule1 says:

    We seem to forget Pleks had 39 points last season. who’s giving him $3M for that? I still don’t think he’s worth more than $4M, but someone will give him $5M. I just hope it’s not the Habs.

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

  75. Chorske says:

    I don’t buy into the Price-as-thoroughbred theory. Send him west where he will be less likely to haunt us.

    This organization needs to rethink its policy of not negociating contracts in midseason. The whole “distraction avoidance” thing is a boondoggle (Boone doggle?) because it is absurd to think that a 28yr old player in the final year of his contract isn’t thinking about it every day. The strategy doesn’t make an ounce of sense because a) if the player has a bad year and gets short changed, the player is unhappy- and has no incentive to sign long term; and b) if the player has a great year and goes elsewhere, we lose them with no compensation for developing them. Either way, someone loses– and everyone knows that the best deals are the ones where both parties win.

    It’s a disaster, but I agree: Pleks is gone. Could’ve had him for 3 million and term back in December, now he’s as good as a Shark, or maybe in Minnesota, where they’ll be looking to back up Mikko.

  76. Hockey Socks says:

    Possible to keep both?

  77. arya13 says:

    I don’t think either wants to be a backup or in a similar position where it’s win and you’re in.

    Obviously Halak would prefer to get the #1 spot and deserves it after this year; I think Price would rather be behind an aging goalie who is good but can’t play more than 45 games. Give him play time without pressure to carry the team immedaitely.

    So I see Halak staying here without an exorbant raise only if Price goes. But I do hope we can keep both…. I guess the offer sheet is what will determine…

  78. SeriousFan09 says:

    And please, Priceians, Halakites and neutrals: Try to keep it civil.

    It’s nice to Boone still has a sense of humour.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  79. TomNickle says:

    Oh you aren’t any fun this morning!

    Don’t kid yourself.  The more passionate or heated it gets, the better it is for HIO, they want blood!

  80. TomNickle says:

    Just a suggestion Boone.  How about a prospect evaluation for skaters that are slotted within five or so spots into our draft pick areas for each round.  I saw a bit of that with guys like Galiev and Schwartz.  It would be nice to have these guys’ profiles grouped together and maybe even some 2nd rounders too.

    Keep up the work.  It’s appreciated.

  81. Puck Bard says:

    Keep both, deal Pleks (and I like Pleks, but someone has to go) , keep shopping for the bits and pieces of this team like they did mid-season.

  82. SeriousFan09 says:

    Sleep deprivation for school assignments (again) does that to me.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  83. TomNickle says:

    Nothing that a little Starbucks can’t cure.  

    There are far worse things to have sleep deprivation from by the way 😉

  84. TomNickle says:

    I have to admit something that could bite me in the behind.  I’m really excited to see Ben Maxwell next season.   The team has handled him in almost the exact same way they handled Pleks early in his pro career.  They had similar numbers in the AHL and had comparable skill sets at their ages.  I don’t think it’s possible that being with the big club for the last few months of the season could’ve hurt him.

    Very excited to see him in training camp come September.

  85. HabFanSince72 says:

    Ben Maxwell has zero points in 20 NHL games played.

  86. Habsrule1 says:

    Philly is very possibly looking to move Jeff Carter to save some salary. That means you find out which of Price or Halak they want for him, and get it done.

    If anyone here would rather Pleks than Carter, I give up.

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

  87. TomNickle says:

    Here’s the problem with that.

    Giving the Flyers either Halak or Price makes them the best team in the Eastern Conference immediately.  No need for debate in my opinion.  The second they acquire a top tier goalie is the second they become the most balanced team offensively and defensively.

    I think a team in the East would have to blow Gauthier out of the water with an offer for him to move Price or Halak to them.

    Why improve an Eastern Conference team that can bite you in the butt when you can send the same player to a Western Conference team that can only make you pay for it in the Finals?

    I think San Jose, St.Louis, Chicago and Edmonton are the likely suitors for a trade when it comes to our goaltenders.

  88. pic1983 says:

    Pleks and Carter are two very different players.  Carter is a pure sniper, and pleks is a pure playmaker.  Im inclined to say id rather have Carter because his goal scoring ability is very attractice, but overall, pleks brings more to the game. 

  89. Offensive DMan says:

    1. Keep Halak.

    2. Package Price + prospect/SKost for Sharp (solves part of Chicago’s cap + goalie problem)

    3. Top Pleks out at 4.8 for 5 years, no more (see #2 w/Sharp to lessen Pleks possible loss)

    4. If #2 doesn’t work, maybe try for Carter deal – may have to massage a bit.

    5. Nice if we could move Hamrlik somehow, Markov situation notwithstanding.  We need the money back that we committed to his contract.

  90. TomNickle says:

    Price and something for Carter?

    Paul Holmgren would be salivating at the thought.

  91. HabFanSince72 says:

    Sharp only has a cap hit of 3.9M.

    So that doesn’t remotely solve Chicago’s cap problem, plus why would they want Price when Niemi took them to the cup?


  92. MathMan says:

    The Habs have to sign or replace Plekanec, or they’re a bad team, it’s really that simple. Plekanec played all the tough minutes at center for them, handled way more than his fair share of defensive draws and drew all the hard assignments. He responded with aplomb. That’s what makes him worth five million (and a GM would hardly be whacked to pay him this much). 

    Lombardi or another center of that ilk cannot do this, and if the Habs don’t have a guy to handle all these minutes they’ll struggle mightily. Gomez has shouldered his fair share of the heavy lifting, but Gomez can only play so many minutes. If they don’t keep Plekanec, they need to replace him with a quality 1B/1A type center. Get Marleau, trade for Carter, something. And if Plekanec is replaced by one of them, Habs fans may find out that his contribution was difficult to handle after all.

    Personnel-wise, this is a key need area and how it’s handle will direct much of how the Habs do next year. If this area isn’t fulfilled, then the Habs aren’t interested in being competitive next year and should probably sell other short-term assets for long-term gain.

    The emergence of Subban allows the Habs to move salary from the back-end to the front-end. Hamrlik, while he was extremely useful this year, is the salary likely to be sacrificed. He’s on the last year of his contract, which makes him movable. The Habs should be able to find a taker for him even though they should not expect much in return. This will allow them to move Spacek to the left, which is likely to instantly improve his game (not that he’s been bad by any means).

    The saved money should allow the Habs to fill the gap at center and fill their area of need — quality 5-on-5 players. A guy like Frolov, who is very strong at even strength, might be a good addition.

    As for the goaltenders, the likely difference in future performance is not enough to warrant losing sleep over TBH. Trade whichever one gives the best return. If neither goalie gets a good enough return, keep both. If both goalies get roughly comparable returns, the right thing to do from a hockey standpoint is to prefer to trade Halak. Price is going to be roughly as good, is going to be RFA for longer, and he will be cheaper in the short term. Yes, Halak was miraculous this year, but he won’t maintain a .924 save percentage for his career and even though he very likely is a very good to elite goaltender, the Habs need to progress to the point that they don’t need a goalie standing on his head to win anything. Halak’s trade value may never be as high.

    They have big non-personnel issues, so I don’t know how much fiddling with the roster actually matters, but I think that’s how they should start.

  93. TomNickle says:

    Excellent post based on everything other than the Frolov comment.

    Curious why you think he’s good even strength.  He’s Kovalev with less skill.


  94. says:

    Sign the cheaper goalie and that’s Price.  He can get the job done.

    Put the money towards the team.

    Dump the Kostitsyns, it may cost a playoff spot next season but that happens.

    Pleks?  It’s all up to him but I wouldn’t be paying more than 4 million for him.  If his points success would have carried into the playoffs then 5 million easy, but it didn’t.

    Trade Hammer at the draft, again it may cost us a playoff spot but this team needs to start fresh and build a winner.

    Let  dime a dozen FA walk.

    Draft Canadian, Build a Winner!

    The playoffs were awesome this year, so entertaining and then they stopped scoring and that loser team in Philly got a chance to win the cup.  That was embarrassing!

    They Call Me Shane

  95. TomNickle says:

    Our team made the playoffs in spite of the Kostitsyns and Hamrlik this season.  I find it highly doubtful that we’d be taking a step backwards if we lost those three.  Quite the contrary in my opinion.

  96. arya13 says:

    Hammer should be traded for sure, he’s still worth something after a decent playoffs, but his age is showing and at the same cap hit as Markov it’s time for him to move on and let us use Carle/Weber/Subban or some combination of the three. Plus wouldn’t Subban with Spacek allow him to play his normal side again?


    O’Byrne – Markov (or Weber/Carle as 3rd pair if Markov still injured)

    Gorges – Gill

    Spacek – Subban

    I think that looks pretty solid and would give us plenty of space to sign pleks, halak, and all our UFAs. Then either Price or an upgrade up front. I say perfect!

  97. arya13 says:

    Regular season.If it doesn’t win us a Cup, it’s useless.

    He has his advantages, good 2 way and PK, but the fact the offence dissapears in the playoffs says: don’t sign for more than $4M. If he’s looking for greater than $5M which he can probably get this year, let him walk. Not worth burying the team for the next 3 years to keep our points leader.

  98. arya13 says:

    I think that’s fair. But I don’t know if he’ll sign for that. If he tests the free market he’ll be gone I think for atleast $5M.

  99. MathMan says:

    Giving the Flyers either Halak or Price makes them the best team in the Eastern Conference immediately.  No need for debate in my opinion.  The second they acquire a top tier goalie is the second they become the most balanced team offensively and defensively.”

    I don’t agree with that at all. I think their D is still exploitable even with Pronger on it (granted, the Habs don’t have the coaching to do it) especially during the regular season where they can just overtax their top 4. I’ve never been sold on the Flyers as an elite team and the playoffs hardly showed me that I should change my mind. The Flyers were very lucky that the Habs took out Washington and Pittsburgh.

    As for improving an Eastern Conference team, well, the Habs are in tough to make the playoffs next year to begin with. Unless that team is going to be an 8th-place team (and I think Philly is more a 5-7 range team), improving them isn’t actually helping them to a spot the Habs have a shot at.

  100. Habsrule1 says:

    I think you’re exagerrating on how good it makes Philly, but the point is still valid. My position is that with Carter and Gomez as our #1 and #2 centres, this also makes our team very strong.

    If we have an equally strong option out west, we should go for it. I just don’t see an available Jeff Carter out there.

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

  101. TomNickle says:

    Pronger, Coburn, Timonen and Carle.

    You think that defensive group can be exploited by a team not named the Blackhawks?

    I’m not going to debate the merits of the defensive corps with you because they proved their worth throughout the playoffs.  If it weren’t for terrible goaltending from Michael Leighton, that series would’ve been much different.

    You don’t see the Flyers as a top 3 team in the East.  I would like to remind you that those Flyers would’ve made the Eastern Conference Final last season too if not for a screw job by officials when meeting Pittsburgh in the Conference Semi-Finals, and subsequently would’ve met up with the mighty Hurricanes for a shot at the Finals.

    As far as us being in tough to make the playoffs next season, the only thing I can say to you is that you might want to get off the kool aid.  Every team in the NHL starts 0-0-0.  I like our teams chances as is, with improvements?  I really like them.


  102. TomNickle says:

    Forward group for Phili after that trade:

    Richards, Briere, Giroux, Leino, Hartnell, van Riemsdyk, Gagne, Betts and whatever they add.

    Defensive group:

    Pronger, Carle, Timonen, Coburn and Bartulis(a very good young player)

    Halak or Price.


    Now think about that depth and the goaltending we give them in a Carter for whoever swap and tell me that isn’t a top 3 team in the East.

    Much better balanced than Pittsburgh or Washington.  I would in fact say that the Flyers would be an early Cup favourite with either of our goalies.

  103. Habsrule1 says:

    You might have a point, but getting Carter puts us up there as well. He is exactly what the Habs need. It’s obviously not ideal to give them Halak or Price, but who is available in the west that would make our team even close to as good as Carter would?

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

  104. TomNickle says:

    Based on the teams that need goalies.

    I would say Backes, Clowe, Penner and Sharp.

    With an outside chance at Oshie, Pavelski, Gagner and Byfuglien.

    I’d rather have any of those players and not improve a team in my conference than have Carter and make Philly the team to beat in the East.


  105. MathMan says:

    Pronger, Coburn, Timonen and Carle.

    You think that defensive group can be exploited by a team not named the Blackhawks?”

    Absolutely. I think with the right coaching, even the Habs could do it. They have really tooled the Flyers’ slow-footed D in the past, maybe that’s why I’ve been so unimpressed with them. Of course, under Martin the Habs never exploit anyone’s D except their own.

    I was actually a little stunned at how long it took the Blackhawks to get underway actually. They are a much better team than the Flyers, and they looked to be choking the Finals away. But they dominated the last couple of games, so there.

    “You don’t see the Flyers as a top 3 team in the East.  I would like to remind you that those Flyers would’ve made the Eastern Conference Final last season too if not for a screw job by officials when meeting Pittsburgh in the Conference Semi-Finals, and subsequently would’ve met up with the mighty Hurricanes for a shot at the Finals.”

    Sure, it was all a screw job.

    “As far as us being in tough to make the playoffs next season, the only thing I can say to you is that you might want to get off the kool aid.  Every team in the NHL starts 0-0-0.  I like our teams chances as is, with improvements?  I really like them.”

    As currently constituted (and heavens, coached), this is an 88-point team. I don’t see them improving much without changes, with goaltending coming down to Earth negating any improvement due to less injuries. 88 points shouldn’t make the playoffs next year, the East won’t be as stupidly weak.

  106. Habsrule1 says:

    None of these players are as good as Jeff Carter, but I’d take Sharp or Byfuglien if either were actually available. don’t get me wrong, the others are good too, but I’d prefer to take my chances and get Jeff Carter. If our team can get to the Top in the East, who cares if Philly is 3rd?

    If we’re the Best, and they’re 3rd best, we should win, right?

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

  107. Habsrule1 says:

    Love your post, but the last part is incorrect, imo. The Habs would have had close to 100 points had they been healthy. I know injuries happen, but realistically, it effects all teams when they are that profound. The Habs were a much better team than what we saw, and I think with just a couple tweaks, we will be real close to 100 points next season.

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

  108. pic1983 says:

    But what you are insinuating is that by adding carter we become the best in the east.  Basically what youre saying is that you think Jeff Carter will solve ALL of our problems.  Jeff Carter doesnt address our need for physicality throughout the line-up on both the offensive and defensive end.  Even with the addition of Carter, to say we would be a better team, even on paper, than washington, philly, or pittsburgh is quite the stretch. 

    I think this playoff run gave you a serious case of habs goggles. 

    “If we’re the Best, and they’re 3rd best, we should win, right?”

    go ask pittsburgh and washington how being top 4 teams in the east worked out for them when facing the 8th seed!

  109. pic1983 says:

    It took a team whos over the Cap to beat philly.  Blackhawks had a lot of depth throughout their line-up, and it was clear that no team could compete with them this playoff.  Lets see if chicago is as good next season after they have to thoroughly break up their line-up. 

    Philly’s depth throughout their roster is astonishing, and when you consider what they did without the services of a healthy Jeff Carter or an elite goaltender, I think its time to give them some respect. Even though i cant stand them for a second.

  110. Habsrule1 says:

    lol i anticipated your last line. That’s why I changed from First to Best….! If we’re the Best, we win the Cup.

    It’s not Habs goggles. It’s actually just an example. I think we need to improve our team the best we can, and if that means improving another team along the way, then so be it. Your logic states we should not trade Price for Ovechkin because Washington would get better. Getting Ovechkin may not even make us the best, but it improves our team, regardless of what it does for Washington. i’m not even saying the Carter thing is the best idea out there. I’m simply saying if he is the best player available to us, we should not avoid doing it because Philly will get better too.

    Anyway, your posts have made sense. I’m not trying to degrade them. I just disagree.

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

  111. says:

    My point was mostly that if we bring up the young fellas from Hamilton it may get worse.

    Hammer was a solid d-man during the regular season, maybe one of our best all season long.  Try not to forget that when he leaves and next year other teams are flying past our new defense core.

    They Call Me Shane

  112. TomNickle says:

    I’m sorry Shane but I believe his play early in the season was smoke in mirrors based on being with Spacek.

    Hamrlik was beyond terrible after December and terrible to the point that he was costing us hockey games.

  113. MathMan says:

    “In spite of”?

    Without Hamrlik stepping in when Markov got injured, there’s no way the Habs make the playoff even with the weak threshold of success the East allowed them to get away with this year. I like Spacek, but to think he could carry someone on a first pairing is silly, TBH.

    And if Andrei Kostitsyn goes he needs to be replaced, and you won’t be too likely to find a replacement that’s as good for the same money.

  114. TomNickle says:

    We were 6 games under .500 with Hamrlik’s heroics.  Tell me how that got us a playoff spot.

  115. says:

    Your people and my people should do lunch.

    I’ll fax ya lol :)

    They Call Me Shane

  116. TomNickle says:

    Glen Metropolit produced as much offensively as Andrei Kostitsyn at a third of the cost.

  117. MathMan says:

    Glen Metropolit exploited a spot on the PP and a good shooting run. He was very weak at even strength.

    Andrei K scored while on Plekanec’s wing, which meant he also drew all of Pleky’s unbelievably tough minutes.

    Not the same thing at all, and I wish people would stop just looking at G-A-P and making silly-on-the-face-of-it proclamations from so little information.

  118. MathMan says:

    It would’ve been even worse without him.

  119. arya13 says:

    But don’t forget his age, he isn’t going to get better and after a long playoffs really the most likely direction he’ll go is the other way. Subban nearly played him out of a spot in the playoffs, I don’t see why during the regular season especially the beginning we can’t afford to go with him over Hammer.

  120. TomNickle says:

    Let’s analyze for a second.

    You’ve said that the Flyers would be a 5-7 team with one of our goalies in their lineup.

    You’ve said that Alex Frolov is a good two way player and said that just because he’s Russian doesn’t mean he’s like Kovalev.

    And you’re saying that I only look at statistics.

    Jesus Cripps I’m taking a break for a while, I’ll come back when sanity has gotten off of its break.

    oh, and by the way, on the whole Flyers defense thing, you’re absolutely wrong.  You won’t find more than two teams in the NHL that wouldn’t trade their D corps for the Flyers D corps.

    Alex Frolov has been accused of a lot of things by the way, being a good two way player or a guy who brings it every night aren’t things he’s been accused of.

  121. says:

    I don’t see Spacek in the lineup next year.  His age like Hammer showed in the end.

    Weber and Carle may both be up.  Carle may be a stretch considering his injury but lets hope for him.

    They Call Me Shane

  122. G-Man says:

    Sorry, but Weber stinks the same way as MAB does without the goals. Hamrlik starts the season with Habs due to Markov’s injury.

  123. pic1983 says:

    we have spacek for two more seasons.  Unless we buy him out, I think its safe to say hes has a roster spot on lockdown to start the season.

  124. pic1983 says:

    weber is also quite young and hasnt gotten more than a cup of coffee in the show.  Too early to say he stinks. 

  125. arya13 says:

    I don’t think you can replace both of them. I agree to an extent but Spacek has a much smaller cap hit so it’s not worth it as much to get rid of him. Plus you need veterans to help the rookies, you can’t just gut all the old guys.

  126. 24 Cups says:

    Spacek signed his contract when he was 35.  You can’t buy him out, send him to the minors, or have him retire.  We are on the hook for the next two years of salary regardless of what happens.  Which is the same reason we could never trade for St. Louis.

    Weber and Carle have shown no real promise of making the grade (I’m not saying they won’t in a year or two).  They also don’t really fit our need on the back end – a tough, physical Dman.

  127. MathMan says:

    Because he actually is a good even-strength player, much more so than a power play player. 38 even-strength points this season, 32 last year, 49 and 40 before that. Those are fine numbers that would have seen him near or at the top of the Habs.

    Just because he’s Russian doesn’t make him like Kovalev. 😀


  128. TomNickle says:

    No it doesn’t.  Playing with effort for a third of the games in the regular season makes him like Kovalev.  And ignoring the fact that he played all season with one of the most skilled centremen in the league, he is very skilled, but not a strong two way player and certainly not the type of character our team wants or needs.

    He’s been in Dean Lombardi’s dog house for over a year.


  129. MathMan says:

    Conflicts with coaches happen all the time. Seems like a good time to sign him on the cheap actually.

    Frolov is actually a pretty good two-way player. They even have him killing penalties at times.

  130. TomNickle says:

    Well Dean Lombardi is the GM, not the coach.

    10 players on Frolov’s team had more PK time on ice than him this season.

    He’s a fill in.


  131. HabFanSince72 says:

    Actually, getting paid what the market deems you are worth is neither greedy nor egotistical.

    My guess is you would want a salary commensurate with that of your peer group.


  132. TomNickle says:

    Pleks had 29 points in his first 69 games.

    All I’m saying is that they’ve been handled in a similar way and are considered by many to have comparable skill sets.  And by that I mean that Maxwell’s game is considered to be right around where Pleks’ game was when he got his first stretch of calls to the big club.

  133. arya13 says:

    Exactly. That’s what should happen.

    But price doesn’t want to play 10 games and he is useless if he does too. Thus if Halak is to get the place he deserves, Price has to go, otherwise we’ll just be regressing him as he’s on the bench. We have Desjardin as well so in the end, trying to keep two starting goalies on our roster is just trying to have you cake and eat it too. We have to decide if we want to trade our valuable assets and hope we are good enough (Huet trade) or go with the Hot hand and hold our breath to hope it doesn’t bite us in the ass.

  134. Offensive DMan says:

    I get the feeling that the organization is all that sold on Niemi.  Just a feeling on what I am reading elsewhere.

    Sharp deal will do a good bit for Chicago cap, as they also seem to have pretty much decided that Huet and his 5.6 mil are headed to the minors. Between those two, it is 9.5 mil, which helps them a whole lot.

  135. adamkennelly says:

    simple – you trade Halak.  His value will never be higher.  We know both goalies are “assets” but this goal starved team cannot afford to have one of their “assets” sitting on his at the end of the bench.  do whatever you have to do package wise to get a top 6 F with size – with several teams needing goaltenders – should be doable.

    as for Pleky – I would let him go – not willing to pay him 4.5 to 5 for the next 5 years.

  136. mcmikel says:

    I’d let both goalies walk and collect the draft picks.  Same with Plek.  Then I package those brothers, Hammerlik, Belle, and a pick for Pender and Khabibulin

  137. HabFanSince72 says:

    Ask Minnesota how much they want for John Scott.


  138. Storm Man says:

    At 6’8 260 I would like that move…. Maybe Belle and a mid round draft pick or Hammer and a pick?

  139. nightmare_49 says:

    H72 – I’ve had my eye on Scott for awhile now and was hoping we could add him to our system, he’s a UFA.

  140. HABZ22 says:

    lots of fire on the board this am! i like it! Just a couple thoughts, those who want to trade Hamrlik, please consider that Markov will most likely miss at least the first month of the season, and he will most likely be needed at least at the start of the season. As far as the goalies go, as much as i love halak i’m just not sure it will be possible to keep him…hear me out. He will no doubt go to arbitration unless we overpay him before that. At arbitration he will “win” a 4,5 mil + settlement (+/- 0.5 mil), if we assume a backup for him making 1 mil wre looking at 5-5.5 mil for goaltending. To put that in perspective with Price’s bonus’ last year we were paying 2.9. It is safe to assume that most posters feel that we need to improve up front to improve this team (big center/size up front) and i just don’t see how to do it if we have 5.5 mill tied up in goaltending and all the other albatross contracts (hello gomez!). If we qualify Price and sign a veteran backup we are looking at between 2-3 mil for goaltending leaving that extra 2-2.5 for improvements up front. I just don’t see how we can tie up those dollars in the back end and see any improvement to the quality on the ice. We are going to see some very hard hockey decisions by alot of teams (Blackhawks!) which will have alot more to do with the salary cap than the quality of the player. i think if you want to bring substance to the Price/Halak debate and all other line-up decisions you have to start bringing the cap into the equation and how to sort this mess out!

    -Go Habs Go!!!


  141. 24 Cups says:

    Mike Boone forgot to ask one more important question – what do we do if Pleks leaves?

    Some say trade for a guy like Carter.  I don’t mind that option but you still indirectly lose a major asset for nothing (giving up a RFA goalie).

    Bring up Maxwell, Trotter or  Desharnais from the farm.  Most of us have come to accept the fact that we were a team with two really good 2nd line centres instead of a #1 one guy.  What kind of chance would we have with just Gomez and a 2nd tier prospect?

    Jump into the UFA pool.  Who would we take and for how much?  Wouldn’t it also be another way of shooting ourselves in the foot, by cheaping out on Pleks in order to sign some lesser talent?

  142. LeNordique says:

    I think we might have to resign ourselves to Plek’s departure…he’s probably the best UFA of a thin pool and someone more desperate/clumsier than Gauthier will send a big contract his way.  I’d love to keep him if he was affordable (I don’t buy the idea that he disappeared in the playoffs) but I doubt fate will be so kind.

    As for the replacement, we can probably address that in the Price/Halak trade.  I know what you mean, but again, fate isn’t kind to us.  You can always look at it the other way and think that we can eat the loss of Pleks because we have a tradeable asset that can address his departure.  I don’t see anyone in the UFA pool that could fill that gap, so a trade is probably the best way to go.

  143. Mark C says:

    For next season there is no worthy internal options, leaving a trade or a UFA signing as the only means of replacing Pleks. There are only two UFA’s that jump out, Matthew Lombardi and…wait for it…Saku Koivu…is there any chance Caption Koivu could return?  

  144. nightmare_49 says:

     Crusty – You cried all last season about the money we had to pay Gomez and now you want us to break the bank for a soft small non-playoff center, give your mullett a shake. ………………  BTW, many GMs have said that the trade talks this spring are double or maybe triple what they normally are so it’s possible their could be a bonanza of trades before the entry draft, a lot of salary dumping trades also like the Kings made last year to obtain Ryan Smith. 

  145. ABHabsfan says:

    To replace PLeks’ PK minutes: John Madden. I am still working o how to replace the 70 points. I’ll let you know

  146. habsman-itoba says:

    I have to agree with pic1983, it’s so silly to give up on a 22 year old prospect (who we are told has oodles of potential), especially the goaltender type.  The best thing for Carey right now just might be to be Halak’s backup for a year.  He hasn’t had the chance to work his way slowly into the league.  Did he really need 40 starts in his rookie year?

    It’s a crazy financial puzzle that needs to be worked out.  The pieces won’t fall into place until PG decides which is the most important.   I can’t wait to see what his first move is going to be, so much hinges on that!  Then we’ll all get to speculate about what happens with the rest.  Good times.

  147. BeachHabFan says:

    first, sign halak. he carried the team all year, he may never be more valuable but the reality is that all price has is potential – just like sean burke had potential and had a long and decent career but never won the big one. he will never realize it playing 1/2 a season (at most) and we can’t afford growing pains in the crease any longer. i’d like to think price would do what pleks did – take a 1 yr and see what develops – but i can’t imagine he would play much and therefore display much anyway.

    that means you trade price and the kostitsyns, thereby ending the purge of supposed troublemakers from end of 09 season. that should get you a top 6 fwd (carter/st.louis may be wishful thinking, look to a team with older established tending that needs someone to groom – NJ, VAN, FLA), maybe a bruiser on D and some decent prospects to replenish hamilton. 

    depending on the salary of the top-6 fwd pleks may not be an option anyway, so sign Moore (still cheap and a decent 2nd line fill in), darche and pyatt. i wish MAB would walk despite markov’s injury, but have a feeling he gets signed for a small raise. see if Metro takes a two-way contract to help guide hamilton (hell, make him a player coach!) and fill in for our inevitable mid-november injury plague. 

    if he still fits $ wise sign pleks 4M max for 3 yr. If pleks goes elsewhere, he goes. he played great during the first 2/3 of a season, was a great penalty killer, was soso in playoffs and seemed to get rundown. if we can acquire some size and speed to make leaving the zone easier, then we don’t get as many penalties and pleky’s value diminishes. i’m happy either way, i just hope they don’t break the bank on the guy before the goalie issue gets resolved.



  148. rogus says:

    Saw on TSN that the oil are looking at buying out O’sullivan. How bout this? Kosti bros and Hammerlik for O’sullivan, Hemsky and a pick? Edmonton would likely want Sergei to play with Gagner. Hamrlik would fill an obvious gap in their D, Andrei would fill the hole left by Hemsky. They would be willing to part with O’sullivan as he hasn’t lived up to the hype but has HUGE upside. Hemsky is always hurt, but a gamer when he does play. Free’s up cap space so we could make a good run at Sharp.

  149. Greg says:

    Boone what have you done!? You deliberately instigated a Halak-Price debate! I think I remember reading somewhere that it’s against the rules of HIO…  That being said… here’s what I think (don’t forget, I’m VERY smart).

    If Pleks actually wants to stay, and Gauthier actually wants him to, he’ll get 4.5 million minimum, otherwise his agent is an idiot, which Rick Curran is not.

    I think it must be Gauthier’s plan to keep both goalies.  I just makes sense.  Price won’t command a huge raise, because you don’t get paid based on your potential, however Price’s numbers weren’t bad this year, and better than last year (except for W/L, which is a STUPID stat to pin on a goaltender).

    So the question isn’t which goalie do you keep, it’s how do you afford both?  Bergeron is gone, Moore is likely gone, and it wouldn’t surprise me to see the Brothers leave. How long do you wait for AK46 to turn into a power forward? He’s got the size, got the skill, but he’s Kovalev-esque in his consistency. Packaging him with SK74 might make them worth more than the sum of their parts.

    If they find the right deal for Hammer, maybe he leaves too (more risky) and maybe Yannick Weber gets a shot, as he’s probably getting near the end of what the AHL can teach him, if he’s every going to be a top-4 Dman in the NHL.

    So there.  In summary, keep Pleks and both goalies.  Trade the Brothers, drop Bergeron and Moore, maybe Metro. Mara’s gone. If you still get fit them under the cap, start looking for a hail mary trade for Hammer. Anyone think he’s worth a first rounder?




    “I lined up next to him at a faceoff, looked over and said “Hi Rocket”. All he did was growl.”

    -Gordie Howe

  150. nickster13 says:

    The solution to Pleks: multiyear deal. Sure we aint stupid, but a good 6 year contract for 23-28 million, and everyone wins, since PLeks is a durable and solid player with no injury history and coming into his prime, i dont know why everyone is suddenly undervaluing him, i think its all wishful thinking since you want him to not be sought after

  151. mike g says:

    1st of all, EDM isn’t trading Hemsky…

    Get it out of your head. He’s a huge part of their team, a very crafty forward, and when healthy will pot 80 pts.

    The only way the Oil take Hamrlik is if Sourray comes back to MTL. They won’t take 5 mill and give us 2. They’d be doing us a huge favour, something rare in the salary cap era. Sourray publicly demanded a trade, so he’ll have to be in the deal coming here…

    And I’m not too sure I’d say no to it. He’s worse defensively than Hamr, but he’s a stand-up type of guy, can be great on the PP (especially now that Markov’s out), and doesn’t take sh*t from anyone on the ice. Only problem is he’s always hurt.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  152. Habsrule1 says:

    actually, it sounds like you’re evaluating him the same as most of us…$4M-$5M, but no more than that. The problem is that other teams might possibly value him at over $5M.

    I think $4.5M is all we should give him, and even that is a lot. The other problem is do we want Gomez & Pleks as our 1 & 2 centres? I’d do anything to put a Jeff Carter in there and that means Pleks is gone.

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

  153. G-Man says:


    Trade Price and the K bros. for “potential.” Let Metro, Mara and MAB walk. Sign Pleks to $15 mil/ 3 season contract or let him walk, too.

    Can’t sign Pleks? Throw money at Marleau. If not, bring Moore back with an expanded role until a suitable #2 can be found. Desjardins or Sanford as Halak’s #2. Keep the D (sans MAB) and bring up a rookie, preferably with size (Carle, perhaps.)

    There is enough cap room to make some noise if the right player presents himself. Dontcha love summer speculations?

  154. Chris says:

    Ah…the never-ending Price/Halak debate.  My contribution (tomic, as always…so if a long post annoys you, just skip the stupid thing):

    Let’s first look at the rest of the NHL.  I’m going to group the teams as already having their goaltender situation set, teams that probably wouldn’t receive much of a guaranteed upgrade by trading for Halak or Price and teams that are desperate for goaltending, as of this summer.

    Goaltending is set (18 teams):

    • Anaheim (Jonas Hiller)
    • Boston (Tuuka Rask, Tim Thomas)
    • Buffalo (Ryan Miller)
    • Calgary (Miika Kiprusoff)
    • Carolina (Cam Ward)
    • Chicago (Antti Niemi)
    • Colorado (Craig Anderson)
    • Dallas (Kari Lehtonen)
    • Detroit (Jimmy Howard)
    • Florida (Tomas Vokoun, Jacob Markstrom)
    • Los Angeles (Jonathan Quick, Jonathan Bernier)
    • Minnesota (Nicklas Backstrom, Matt Hackett)
    • New York Rangers (Henrik Lundqvist)
    • Phoenix (Ilya Bryzgalov)
    • Pittsburgh (Marc-Andre Fleury)
    • San Jose (Evgeni Nabokov)  ==>  assuming Nabokov is re-signing in San Jose
    • Toronto (Jean-Sebastien Giguere, Jonas Gustavsson)
    • Vancouver (Roberto Luongo, Cory Schneider)

    Do they REALLY need Halak or Price? (i.e. would either guy be a definite upgrade behind their current roster?) (7 teams):

    • Atlanta (Ondrej Pavelic)
    • Columbus (Steve Mason)
    • Nashville (Pekka Rinne, Chet Pickard)
    • New York Islanders (Dwayne Roloson, Rick DiPietro)
    • New Jersey Devils (Martin Brodeur)
    • Ottawa (Brian Elliot)
    • Washington (Semyon Varlamov, Michael Neuvirth)

    Probably need a goalie… (4 teams)

    • Edmonton (Nikolai Khabibulin)
    • Philadelphia (Brian Boucher)
    • St. Louis (Ty Conklin, Jake Allen)
    • Tampa Bay (Mike Smith, Dustin Tokarski)

    Goalies in italics are highly-touted goalie prospects that are the heir apparent in the system to the #1 job.

    Alright.  Now, I would argue that many of the teams in the middle category would have no interest in giving up assets for a goalie like Halak or Price as the upgrade they might receive is not necessarily large enough to justify the cost.

    Of the teams in the third category, I think Edmonton could come up roses if Khabibulin returns from his injury.  Khabibulin has proven people wrong before when they thought his career was over.  Regardless, he’s making so much money that the Oilers should just sit on re-building for another year with him in net and take another high draft pick.  The HardHabits Tanking-For-The-Cup (TM) Strategy would be their best bet at this point, as they have a long way to go anyways…they would be stupid to deal any of their limited assets for a goalie this summer.

    If you are going to give up equal value for Halak or Price, it should be because you think you are a goalie away from truly competing for a playoff spot.  St. Louis, Tampa Bay and Philadelphia all meet this criteria.

    Now, who is available as a free agent this summer?


    • Vesa Toskala (Toronto/Calgary, 32 years old)
    • Dan Ellis (Nashville, 29 years old)
    • Jose Theodore (Washington, 32 years old)
    • Marty Turco (Dallas, 33 years old)
    • Chris Mason (St. Louis, 33 years old)
    • Ray Emery (Philadelphia, 26 years old)

    I can see Tampa Bay or St. Louis signing Chris Mason, who remains a very good goalie.  I would not be shocked to see Turco get another chance…he’s got name recognition, and while his skills have slipped, he remains an average NHL goalie who can play above average at times.

    Theodore is the wild card…was his late-season form a fluke?  If some team out there believes he has finally matured and got his head screwed back on, they might be willing to take a look.  Emery is the enigma…he played well at times for Philly before his injury, but comes with a lot of baggage.

    The point of this long post is that while there are a few NHL teams looking for goalies, there are a few high-profile names that can be had for nothing more than cap space.  Teams like St. Louis and Tampa Bay should be looking here to keep their young assets. 

    Philadelphia has some useful players, like a Jeff Carter, but the two teams might be loathe to deal with one another due to the possibility of meeting in the playoffs. 

    The dark-horse in this whole mess for me is New Jersey…Matt Frazee is their top goalie prospect, but I don’t think he’s a sure-fire starter.  Martin Brodeur is getting on in years and Lamoriello is undoubtedly looking for his successor.  But is there a Hab fan anywhere in the world that wants to trade Halak or Price to New Jersey and that system and have them haunt us for years?  :)

  155. Rugger says:

    Agree, I think NJ will be the only one interested and they will want Price.

  156. HabLou says:

    Well, log term for the team….. Trade Halak, The Kosti brothers and yes I am sorry to say Tomas P. We can get a goodn return for this and most of the D Men who did nothing for us during the playoff run.

    Thanks all,

  157. Storm Man says:

    If you think that the bell centre and the city of Montreal would not burn to the ground if the Habs missed the playoffs for 4 or 5 years you must be new to earth.

  158. Chris says:

    They will almost certainly want Price, as he fits the Brodeur model better.  The problem with New Jersey is that they don’t really have a lot of players that would fit the perceived need in Montreal for a top-6 power forward that can sit in front of the net and muck it up.  David Clarkson probably fits the need the best, but I would be shocked out of my tree if he was made available. 

    With Cory Schneider stuck behind Luongo in Vancouver and Michal Neuvirth potentially stuck behind Varlamov in Washington, Lamoriello also has a couple of other young, intriguing options that he could target.

  159. likehoy says:

    all this talk about jeff carter, and patrick sharp…what about some of the players we DON”T see coming?

    a lot of the trades that the habs make come with players we’re not expecting…

    i personally think both kostitsyns for nathan horton could happen

  160. likehoy says:

    i don’t think i can watch 5 years of a losing team.

  161. ed lopaz says:

    are you a season ticket holder, an advertiser, RDS, or do you have any other financial stake in the Habs?

    ……..thought so.

    that’s why!

    next question.

  162. SmartDog says:

    you left out the word ‘more’.

    Not signing or trading Pleks = yet another missed opportunity.

  163. SmartDog says:

    What Should Gauthier Do?


    Not signing or trading Pleks = yet another missed opportunity.

  164. SeriousFan09 says:

    What to do?

    Move Andrei K for pick/prospect, whatever the return is. With the weak FA market, some teams would rather roll the dice on a more reasonable contract than pay up to 2 million over true market value on anyone capable of scoring 20 goals, should get something. Take Sergei and see if CHI would like to try him out with Pat Kane again, move him in a deal involving Sharp, Brouwer or Ladd, depends on what they want and what the best deal is.

    Shop both goalies, I know what Halak did, but if we can rob a team on a deal, go for it.

    See if Pleks can be reasonably signed in a good cap hit, but if not, well, trades have been made involving the goalies, someone of the proper skill should have been acquired to fill in.

    Get White up from Hamilton to fill a spot and bring Andres Engqvist over from Sweden. Resign Moore, Pouliot, Lapierre, sorry Metropolit we liked you but the fact is 1 million plus is not a good deal for another undersized centre at your age.

    Extend Markov for a 5-6 contract.

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  165. Spoons91 says:

    Oh i thought number 7 on portugal was crosby… woops

    follow me on twitter —

  166. mike g says:

    Horton’s name has been thrown around alot too…

    Not as much as the others, but it’s been mentionned. I think something more like a Ryan Clowe, if the Sharks decide they wanna re-sign Marleau. They’d have to clear some space, cuz Pavelski and Setogouchi or Mitchell are RFA’s this summer and are due for some raises. Plus they need to sing a goaltender and fill the void left by Rob Blake….

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  167. mike g says:

    Thanks for saving me 25 minutes of typing…

    Thoise are my exact thaughts, except for shipping Sergei to CHI. I really don’t think they wanna bring a guy like that into a really tight-knitt locker room. Apparently, not because they won the Cup, they have an extreamly great group of guys in that room. Their team and wins are based on hard work, and I’m not too sure thats in SK’s scouting report..

    But who knows, the Hawks have to make changes and a cheap gamble like SK might attract them..

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  168. HabFanSince72 says:

    Why would anyone who has been paying attention want the Minsk Magician? The dude bailed on his team during the playoffs!!!

    The view of SK74 as a great player is restricted to a few loons on Habs I/O – and I doubt any of you are NHL GMs.


  169. Malreg says:

    Lol the Bell Center can’t even go 2 powerplay’s without a shot on goal without losing their patience.

  170. ABHabsfan says:

    Good call for Horton. He is a real scorer and ahs his best years ahead IMO. Habs should jump at that deal if presented

  171. Habsrule1 says:

    Actually that happened just before Gainey got here, but they haven’t improved at all, missing the playoffs only once since, and that on the final day of the season.

    Nope…no improvement whatsoever.

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

  172. mike g says:

    How about Johnny Boychuk?

    Many of you may not know him, but he’s a 27 year old UFA. Played very well last year for the Bruins, is Canadian, tough, 6 foot 2, right handed shot,  and has decent offensive skills. He cost half a mill last year, and won’t fetch a huge contract…

    If the Bruins don’t re-sign him, I’d love for the Habs to take a shot a him.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  173. Max_a_million says:

    OK, so I was originally put off by the length of the post.

    Although after looking it over I very much appreciate how you have broken it down.  It’s great to talk about pie in the sky, but knowing what is actually plausible is much more helpful.  Thanks

    With so few openings it makes me think that the return will not be high enough to trade one of our goalies.  You changed my mind from thinking PG trades Price (who I like very much), to a good chance we sign both and wait for an injury to make a trade. 

    Bad in a way that it would be nice to start out with a new asset, but it could be good if we can add some new blood midseason to stir things up.

  174. ooder says:

    you don’t even have to touch him to make him fall


    “I like what I’m seeing right now,” assessed Markov. “We’re not perfect, but we’re trying to be.”

  175. SeriousFan09 says:

    Depends on how Hawks want to handle their talent development, with Jack Skille and Kyle Beach in the system, they may want to work on maturity in their prospects before graduating them, Beach apparently has issues which would seem to demand a stay in the AHL to temper his attitude. Guess we’ll find out, might end up moving both Ks for picks/prospects for a CHI forward but we’ll find out.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  176. SeriousFan09 says:

    Didn’t mean trade both of them, just move the one who delivers the best value for the team.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  177. mike g says:

    SK and his bro AK are a bunch of bums…

    I really liked the way JM coached in the playoffs, but if I could add a small comment, I would have loved to see both of them sent home. My non-NHL employed knowledge tells me that even a squirell would have produced more than the 0 goals in 18 games that AK did….

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  178. crabvader says:

    They’d be pretty stupid to let him go.

    I don’t see it happening.

  179. SeriousFan09 says:

    Problem is with the weak FA market, his agent may be looking to significantly up his salary, it is a seller’s market this year and the only good deals in this year’s FA market will be the 750k contracts with reclamation projects or similar.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  180. crabvader says:

    That sport is all about diving.

    I haven’t watched a single game because it’s impossible from going from hockey to soccer.

    It’s like going from prime rib to Kraft dinner.

  181. j2w4habs25 says:

    doesnt Price and Halak become UFA’s this July?

  182. andrewberkshire says:

    Fooled you! We’re all NHL GMs!

  183. crabvader says:

    AK actually had a hat-trick in the Washington series. :/

  184. Storm Man says:

    What happened? That the Habs missed the playoffs 4or 5 years in a row….. Are you new?

  185. likehoy says:

    clowe’s nice bu tnot available.

  186. smiler2729 says:

    I’m not into paying Plekanec what he thinks he’s worth… or Halak for that matter. I definitely want to keep Dom Moore.

    I’d sign Marty Turco as a tutor to whichever goalie remains (Price).

  187. crabvader says:

    Horton would be acceptable.

    The problem is, Jeff Carter or Patrick Sharp are VALUABLE.

    There’s no doubt in my mind that Carter was playing hurt. He was rushed back.

    Sharp was a monster; he was one of the forwards with the most points in the playoffs (or goals?) Either way.

    I would like Horton because I think his mixture of size and skill would fit with our team, but would much rather have either Carter or Sharp.

  188. alestar says:

    They are both RFA’s, with Halak eligible for arbitration…


    XXIV…and counting

  189. Habsrule1 says:

    They missed the playoffs 4 out of 5 years before Gainey took over.

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

  190. crabvader says:

    Clowe is way too slow.

    We’ll be in and out of the zone before he even crosses the blue line. 😛

  191. likehoy says:

    hwo about in terms of availability..maybe sharp is available, but not carter…

  192. Mats Naslund says:

    I love the people who think we’re going to land Byfuglien with a goalie. This just in: Chicago management also watched the finals.


    I wouldn’t mind seeing a scenario where Montreal trades a RFA goalie to a team with a wealthy crop of RFA forwards. Colarado fits the bill. There are others. That way teams can fill needs without loosing out on their RFAs.

  193. j2w4habs25 says:

    Well in this case its simple; Halak has more value now, after that Stunning  post season/reg season… althought am so thankful for that I say we get rid of him. Its Price who is the face of the future “the long run”  I would say Halak, Kostitsyn bros trade for a replacement for Pleks..every Habs fan can say goodbye to Thomas (Jarg) Pleks. I dont think were going to sign him again

  194. SmartDog says:

    No, I just have higher expectations than you.  

    Scrambling to make the playoffs the last week and getting blown out in the first or second round to me is not a winning team.  It’s a losing team.  The Habs have so much on their side and should be able to do better.  It was squandered in the late 90’s and we’ve never recovered.  Montreal is DUE a winner.  Five more years like the last 15…. that’s 5 more years of losing.  Sorry – it just is.


    Not signing or trading Pleks = yet another missed opportunity.

  195. andrewberkshire says:


  196. habsman-itoba says:

     Brendan Morrison would be a cheap centerman.

  197. avatar_58 says:

    Even when they do get hit I’m confused as to why they flip out and lie down for 5 minutes. I mean really? He kicked you in the rib? Suck it up you pansy. Shouldn’t the flags come from ACTUALY rule breaking moves and not how much they can sell the pain?

    How anyone can watch this is beyond me

  198. alestar says:

    Yes to Moore…but I’m fairly sure Pleks has every intention in testing the UFA market.

    Love to keep Halak, but I don’t think we can keep both goalies…

    XXIV…and counting

  199. crabvader says:

    I don’t think Turco did a stellar job with Mike Smith.

    Smith adopted Turco’s pre-lockout goaltending style… It’s like this stand-up mixture of Tim Thomas stack-the-pads crap.

    It’s too risky and doesn’t work well in today’s league.

    Pleks is definitely worth at least 4 to 4.5 mil. I just don’t think we should do anything over 5 mil. Not cause I don’t want to, but because we probably can’t afford it if we want to sign/trade for wingers.

    Seriously, Pleks did amazing for us this year. His penalty killing is superb and so are his playmaking skills.

    This is a guy who’s played A LOT of games this year also. He’s also very reliable. He’s never injured!

    How many games has he missed in his NHL career, 4-5?

    I agree with you about signing Moore, if the price is right, we gotta go for it. That guy is allllll work.

    We’re really close to the cap and we need some salary dump. The best scenario would be to get rid of Hamr’s contract and AK’s.

    Anyone know how much Laraque’s buyout would give the team?

  200. mike g says:

    If PG is smart, which I hope he is, he will shop both goalies…

    And if he’s smart, he will trade one of them, likely Halak. Why? Well because Halak’s value will never, ever be higher. He will never have such a phenominal playoff as he did this year. I’m not at all saying he will crash and burn and never last in the NHL. But even if he goes on to win Stanley Cups, he will likely win them with stronger teams and play a much smaller factor than he did this year. What he did in the postseason was remarkable, and isn’t seen very often. Goalies sometimes have a run like that and are never able to repeat it. Sometimes the ball just rolls in your favor without even touching it, that’s what happened with him. I’m not saying he ain’t good, he’s very good, but in the playoffs he was insane. Take advantage of that.

    So, if you shop both Halak will likely get the biggest return. If you find a great deal you do it, cuz a GM’s job is to improve his team no matter what. If Gretzky can be traded, so can Halak. There’s absolutely no proff Jaro will repeat the success he had, so maximize his value and profit from recieving proven players. If he becomes a great goaltender, you’ve got players you traded for to show for it. And you invest alot of time into developping Price well. If Halak fails, you win the trade. But, by trading Price, you can’t win. You likely won’t get a great return, so no great results. If Jaro slips, Carey plays well, and what you got for Price doesn’t produce, ur screwed. You lost.

    Trading Halak is the only option that leaves the Habs in a position to win a trade. I love the guy, and wish he stays and plays the way he has. But this situation sucks, and a responsable GM should be able to identify what I just wrote and see that keeping him is a huge gamble. Your losing out on a potential great return, and hoping he keeps playing the way he did.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  201. andrewberkshire says:

    Technically Montreal isn’t “due” anything. It’s a 30 team league, so the average team will win once every 30 years.

  202. crabvader says:

    You never know about Carter.

    Philly is a team that needs to work around the cap also.

    You think Holmgren wasn’t watching when Leighton let in the softest game winning goal in a Stanley Cup final?

    He needs a goaltender.

  203. Storm Man says:

    My post was to somebody that said we should tank like the blackhawks did for 4 or 5 years in a row…. My post was saying not if you want Montreal not to burn. Not making the playoffs is one things been number 30 year in year out would not wash with Hab fans.

  204. Rugger says:

    And they never seem to be hurt bad enough to come out of the game, let alone miss a few games.  Total BS.

  205. ed lopaz says:

    in 3 full seasons playing for the habs, plekanec has managed to avoid all contact.

    this might explain why he is never injured, don’t you think?

    he is a great, great skater.

    he has excellent hands, and great vision.

    he plays PP and PK equally well.

    but he has not hit anyone in 3 years!!

  206. SmartDog says:

    I wasnt’ talking “technically”, though what you’re citing is ‘randomly’.  I was saying, IT’S ABOUT FREAKIN TIME MONTREAL RIGHT THE SHIP.  Teams have advantages and disadvantages. Montreal HAD the strongest legacy of winning… that’s a lot of power in knowledge, experience, reputation, etc.  That thread was broken though in the late 90’s by.. who?  Oh yeah, the Molson’s. But it needs to get back what it’s lost.

    But my real point was, we’ve lost a LOT in the last 15 years including being out of the playoffs many times. 5 years of the same would be 5 more years of losing.  To me.  And to most fans I think.  Winning really means just ONE thing.  


    Not signing or trading Pleks = yet another missed opportunity.

  207. Mikey_39 says:

    I love sergei as a player.  I really hope we don’t trade the K-bros.  But, many have proposed Sergei for Sharp, because sergei can play with kane.  Aside from the fact that Chicago would take so much more for him, say a couple of pricks or prospects, why would chicago want to do that?  Kane is an up and coming star for Chicago.  However, he is a bit of a party boy.  Why would they want to add Sergei to their team, when they are trying to control Kane’s partying?

  208. mezzi14 says:

    If I was PG this what I would do. Trade Halak. Yes I understand he saved our playoffs but the point is every year a new goalie ga-ga starts and after these goalies never mount to the pressure. So trade Halak while he is hot like say for Carter who the Flyers are willing to part with mainly due to financial reasons. We get our big center we should have got in 2003. For Price he is cheaper and he will rebound all PG has to do is get a veteran backup like Turco or Biron to mentor Price. As for others Metro is too old and Moore is good to. Keep Patches in Hamilton. Get rid of Hammer and Spacek because they are simply too slow and old and they are not getting any younger. Bring in a cheap two way American dman like Joe Corvo who is a right handed d with a good shot and can play better defensively.

    ” They call me Drew”


  209. crabvader says:

    First off, I never said he was the meanest player on the ice. That’s his only weak point.

    You’re not paying this guy to do Scott Hartnell’s job. There are over 20 other jerseys that can fill that role on our team.

  210. HardHabits says:

    It’s simple. Trade Halak for 1st round picks. Keep Price. Let Plex walk. Keep PK in the minors. Don’t sign anybody under 6 feet or under 200 pounds. Just put out a team that wont get pushed around and I’ll be happy with Price leading the way to the draft lottery.

    I do believe that Cammy, Gionta and Gomez provide a very good leadership core, the problem is there is nothing to build around these guys other than the parade of short career AHLers and Mr Minnesotas.

    Lets start the rebuild proper, via the draft and put aside any stupid notions that a team can be built via free agency and trades alone, or with late round selections given that only friends of friends with Quebecois names get hired in the scouting department.

    In 2-3 years the Habs can start thinking about the final pieces to win a championship. As it stands now the Habs can only tweak here and there with the hopes of making the playoffs as the last seed on the final game of the regular season.

    Oh yeah, trade the Kostitsyns for a bukcet of pucks and a few hockey sticks.

  211. crabvader says:

    A couple of pricks?

    I thought that was the reason we were trading Sergei in the first place!

  212. mike g says:

    One of those goals was a nice shot, the other 2 were off his behind….

    Int he other 18 games, 0 goals. That’s pathetically insane for someone who you all think is a 30+ goal scorere….

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  213. crabvader says:

    I’m so ridiculously grateful that you are not the GM of the Habs.

  214. nickster13 says:

    Hey dont hate on soccer, nothing wrong with it, yes i hate the divers too, but its still a great game, and takes a different sort of appreciation

  215. crabvader says:

    Don’t generalize.

    I don’t like him. He’s got no heart.

  216. andrewberkshire says:

    I highly doubt that most fans consider anything but winning the cup a losing season. This isn’t 1977, teams aren’t that stacked anymore. Was this season a losing season? I doubt you’d find many fans who would think of it that way. From game 1 when Markov was injured, making the playoffs was considered the biggest prize this club could achieve, yet they eliminated the two best teams in the eastern conference.

  217. crabvader says:

    Even a scoreless hockey game is more exciting than soccer.

    I love the ambience around the World Cup… but the sport itself is lacking. I only appreciate squads that keep diving to a minimum… but from what I’ve seen in the past and still hear during these games, it’s worse than ever.

    What a mockery of a sport and a slap in the face to real athletes who put their bodies on the line and play with real injuries like our hockey players.

  218. K-hab25 says:

    The 2 years Price was the #1 we made the playoffs, so your ignorant, “Price will lead us to the lottery” comment is not only unfounded, but really old. You’re like a bad comedian saying the same jokes over and over, even when your the only one laughing. Tanking is for losers, oh wait you are, nevermind carry on.

  219. andrewberkshire says:

    Only one was off his behind Mike, the other two were nice shots. And all 3 were because he was in the right position.

  220. Mikey_39 says:

    If Jonathan Cheechoo was bought out, would you take a chance on him? Hell I know I would, I’d even have seconds.  Then wash it down with a cold glass of budweiser

  221. crabvader says:

    Cheechoo is a bum.

  222. TomNickle says:

    Quite the opposite regarding Halak Mike.  Now that he’s had a full season of starting under his belt.  Teams will have better video review of tendencies and habits of his and will be better able to exploit them.  Flyers much?

    A very good goalie once said to me.  It’s a hell of a lot easier to steal a #1 job than it is to keep it.  Any goalie who plays the way Jaro Halak did in the playoffs can spend their entire careers trying to keep that form consistently to no avail.

    See Carey, Jim

          Theodore, Jose

          Khabibulin, Nikolai

          Kiprusoff, Mikka

          Huet, Cristobal

          Toskala, Vesa

          Potvin, Felix

    And the list goes on and on.  If I’m gonna gamble on a goalie, leaving aside the fact that Halak’s value is through the roof and has nowhere to go but down, along with his play, I’m going with the 5th overall pick instead of a 9th round pick.  They were selected in their respective spots for a reason.

  223. adam76 says:

    If this franchise trades Halak – I am going to riot like its 1955.

  224. nightmare_49 says:

    By Justin Bourne, Special for USA TODAY  ………………………………   Let players be players: Don’t beat the personality out of them  ……………………………….

  225. joeybarrie says:

    Hopefully we can get rid of the dead weight. AK and SK should be outta here. It would be nice to get something decent in return, because it is more likely they will do well in another market a la Lats.

    If we can get someone to take on Hamr’s contract, that would help us a great deal as well. However with Markov out, it is unlikely we will try.

    On to the sensitive issue… Keep Price, and trade Halak. His value is very high. We can get something great. Price is a very good goalie, and most likely will become great. But I don’t see there being a huge difference in the two options. Can Price step up? Can Halak keep his game? To me its 50-50 either way you go. So in the end we can sign Price for less, and get something good for Halak. We cannot get something as great for Halak, and if you let Price go, and he does match his potential, then your finished as a GM anywhere you go. If Halak keeps it up, it’s ok cause you traded him for something good, and couldn’t keep both.

    Pleks, offer him max 4.5 million for 3 years. If he takes it great, if not let him walk and make a move for Frolov, Jokinen, or trade for something else. Just like Kovalev last season, Pleks has not been consistent and could go either way. I don’t see him getting all that much with Jokinen out there anyway. Jokinen is 6’3 and has had 2 seasons of 90 points, and 1 over 70. Pleks has had a career top 70 and a 69 2 seasons ago, and fizzled out in the end of the season.

    I would like to keep Moore but he might have become too expensive.

    I would like to see if we can get St.Louis…

    There may be other teams, but only ONE Club De Hockey…

  226. Mikey_39 says:

    Agreed but wouldn’T you take a chance of him getting his scoring chance again for dirt cheap.  He’s over 6 feet tall, shoots right…and has scored 56 goals in the past.  I’m not saying it’ll happen again, but i feel like it’d be worth a shot if the Sens bought him out

  227. crabvader says:

    No way, he’d be dead weight.

    The only reason he scored in the past was because of Thornton.

  228. joeybarrie says:

    I would take a chance at Cheechoo for 1.5 Million. Good replacement for Moore.

    There may be other teams, but only ONE Club De Hockey…

  229. K-hab25 says:

    No one player is bigger than the TEAM. Price is my favorite Hab, but if he can fetch the big scoring foward (Carter) we lack, than I’m all for it. All of us should only be concerned with the TEAM, not our own favorites.

  230. mike g says:

    But that’s what I said Tom, we have to trade Halak now and keep Price.

    It’s logical for so many reasons. We’d put the chances on our side of benefitting from a trade, and the chances that his game stays at the level they’re at now are nearly impossible…

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  231. crabvader says:


    Cheechoo isn’t even a centerman.

    Also, Moore has more work ethic in his pinky than Cheechoo has in his entire body. He also has proven that he can’t score. 

    So no, Cheechoo would not be a good replacement for Moore.

  232. TomNickle says:

    The thing with St.Louis is that Boucher will love his speed and work ethic.  Our franchise made a decision last off-season to get younger up front too.  We do need a couple of players who can back a defenseman in on his goalie and clear the way to pick up rebounds.  If Malone wasn’t paid so damn much he’d be a good pickup from Tampa.

  233. TomNickle says:

    I meant to your point that Halak may stay consistent.


  234. nightmare_49 says:

       At the Bell Center on Sept-26-10 at 6:00pm the Minnesota Wild will face the Habs in a exibition game, The Great Lats and the crew from L’antichambre will be on hand, no doubt.

  235. TomNickle says:

    Without the inflated salary?  What exactly do you think Halak’s going to sign for?  $2 million annually?  $3 million?

    You are about to get one hell of a shock when he goes to arbitration.

  236. Chris says:

    I agree that the best route, if the players’ egos can handle it, is to keep both for another year or two. I truly believe that there just isn’t the goalie market out there that many believe exists.

    The playoff success of relative unknowns like Antti Niemi and Michael Leighton and the playoff burnouts of star goalies like Roberto Luongo, Martin Brodeur and Ryan Miller this season demonstrated that a serviceable goalie behind a strong team is enough to win a Stanley Cup.

    While a hot goalie can get hot occasionally and carry a mediocre team, nobody generally sees it coming, and the protagonist is often a surprise (Giguere in 2003, Kiprusoff in 2004, Roloson in 2005, Leighton/Halak in 2010, etc.).

  237. TomNickle says:

    I’m sure Latendresse is expecting his number to be retired that night.

  238. smiler2729 says:

    Oh man, I’d love Martin St.Louis and there has to be some sort of deal there if you have Halak, AK46 and SK74 to dangle.

    You’re kidding about Jokinen, right? Yeah, thought so.

  239. smiler2729 says:

    Funny one but get over it.


  240. mike g says:

    I have friends who work at La Belle Province and Jarry Smoked Meat, and they said their owners have ordered the banners and they’ll be lifted to those restaurant ceilings that night…

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  241. HardHabits says:

    Habs dont tank I am told. Tanking is for losers, meaning Stanley Cup champions. Habs fans are the STUPIDEST on the planet. Just read the posts here to give you an idea. They actually believe all that garbage about how the Habs are the classiest team in the NHL and how they have a tradition of winning. That all died when Bowman left. Since then there is one reason the Habs even were half decent and that reason was Patrick Roy. I mean what team trades Chelios for Denis Savard?

    The Habs will tank before they win the Cup and if they don’t tank they wont win the Cup either.




  242. K-hab25 says:

    His point was if the greatest player in history can be traded during his prime, than a 25 year old 9th round back up, with a 2.66 GAA and .919 sv% and 56 W’s in 101 games, can be traded aswell.

  243. mike g says:

    When you snap out of whatever high you’re on, and realize that Halak will get minimum 4.5 mill per year, you’ll think differently…

    “Without the inflated salary”, how the heck can you say that? Kari Lethonen just got 3.9 f’kin million dollars by the Stars. Kari “my back hurts every year for 9 months and I’ve never been anything good” Lethonen, is making 3.9 million. Halak is galaxies better than him.

    C’mon buddy, I didn’t wanna snap at you and I don’t wanna argue cuz ur probably a good guy, but seriously….

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  244. crabvader says:

    There is a city about 6 hours drive West of Montreal that would gladly accept your garbage theory and they are actually in a full-on suck fest so that’s right up your alley.

    You’re like the woman who performed dirty deeds on the director to get the leading role in a movie.

    Do you see what I’m getting at?

    It’s embarrassing and you have no dignity.

  245. mike g says:

    What I meant was I’m sure he won’t turn out like Huet, so he’ll remain a good goaltender.

    But I never see him having a run like he did with us this year. There are superstar goaltenders for 20 years that never have insane playoffs like he did, against such strong/potent opponents.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  246. Mark C says:

    56 goals in the past? That was four seasons ago, his goal scoring has gone from 56, 37, 27, 12, to 5 in 61 games last year. Hell, Chris Philips out scored him in OTT last season, the guy is done.

    All that being said, I agree with you that if he was willing to sign for league min. then maybe, maybe its worth a shot in the dark during training camp, however he really seemed done as an NHLer at the end of the year.  Outside of scoring, he does little well. He can’t skate so could he even play on a top two line?

  247. Chris says:

    I’m not sure that Nathan Horton is exactly a name that comes out of the blue, as he has been one of the most frequently discussed trade targets of the last year!  😉

    Florida moved Horton to centre (which he wasn’t happy about) because of a lack of depth at that position.  If they trade Horton, I just can’t see the return as yet more wingers, especially a pair that are RFA’s this summer (SK74) or next summer (AK46) when Horton has 3 years remaining on a very affordable $4 million per year deal for a 25 year old power forward on the cusp of point-per-game production.

    I think the Habs would have to sweeten that pot with a defence prospect (perhaps Yannick Weber, due to his familiarity with Panthers coach Peter DeBoer?) and perhaps some sort of draft pick swap arrangement.  Horton is not coming cheap.

  248. joeybarrie says:

    Whats wrong with Jokinen? 50 points this season is better than Pleks poor season a few years ago and the year before that he had 63 which is also better than pleks poor seasons. Then his upside is 90 pt, 90 pts, and 70 pts… 6’3 215… If we give him the same 4.5 million or so, I don’t see why he is so much worse than Pleks???

    There may be other teams, but only ONE Club De Hockey…

  249. TomNickle says:

    I’m making no assumptions about either goaltender.  That’s the difference between you and I.  I’m going by facts.

    Allan Walsh is a blood sucking child.

    Jaro Halak has put himself ahead of the team.(unless you consider giving management and the coaching staff an ultimatum 20 games into the season a team first thing to do)

    Kari Lehtonen was signed at almost $4 million annually.  That’s what is called a market precedent.  Meaning that any goaltender who has played an equal or similar number of games as Kari Lehtonen has and his a ufa or arbitration eligible will not sign for anything less than that contract paid Lehtonen.

    In Halak’s case, his numbers and productivity blow Lehtonen’s away.  They will be seeking at least a $500k/year increase on what Lehtonen makes.  If you don’t believe, that’s fine, just watch.

  250. Max_a_million says:

    PK has a good shot at the Calder trophy.  Minors I think not.

  251. joeybarrie says:

    We don’t necessarily have to replace his position… Just his body. Its not like we dont have SEVEN other centers… I agree about the work ethic, but Moore had 28 points here. Cheechoo had 29 in less games last season. As for scoring…What are you talking about. He has 170 goals… that more than Moore has points and they are the same age…

    There may be other teams, but only ONE Club De Hockey…

  252. TomNickle says:

    Brian Burke or Kevin Lowe?

    Which one are you?

  253. TomNickle says:

    Ok Sergio.

    Ignore the facts.

    Ignorance is bliss I suppose.

  254. andrewberkshire says:

    Never in a million years. Cheechoo’s career is over.

  255. K-hab25 says:

    I’m with you joey. Jokinen scored 15 goals last year, but 38, 39, 34 and 29 goals in the 4 previous years. The guy is big, can score 30 goals and we can probably get him for 3.5/4 mill, because of his subpar season last year. I think Pleks will get atleast 5.5/6 mill from someone. So for the price of Pleks alone, we could probably get Jokinen and resign Moore.

  256. SeriousFan09 says:

    No thanks to Jokinen, he’s failed to live up to expectations for a while now and has spent much of his career with the basement squads of the NHL. Doesn’t strike me as the big-game performer we’re looking for and hasn’t doone anything in the last two seasons that even slightly impresses me.

    St. Louis, five years ago I’d be all over that but he’s coming up on the wrong side of 30 very fast and a guy his size is defined by his great speed and I really have to wonder how long that speed is going to be with him. For a 1-year contract and a guy who’s never shown an interest in signing with MTL and would have to waive his NTC, I don’t see it happening.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  257. SeriousFan09 says:

    Unless of course, three teams suck worse than MTL next year and leave them out of position for selecting a potential franchise player in what is considered a weaker 2011 draft year and then loses the draft lottery in 2012, goes to 2nd place so instaed of getting a Patrick Kane, we get a Van Riesmdyk who may turn out to be a very good player, isn’t a magician with the puck like Pat Kane.

    Pass thank you very much. Too much parity and too much failure to successfully tank for the draft without risk and the team could go two years with no Malkin, Crosby, Toews, Backstrom, Ovechkin, Kane or Doughty.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  258. K-hab25 says:

    Hey it’s Mr. 9/11 was an inside job. You’re correct I am transparent, I prefer Price over Halak, but if we could Carter for him I’d help him pack his bags. You, on the otherhand, are kicking and screaming like a damn child at people even mentioning trading Halak.

  259. 21272andme says:

    “lots of people in NA can go from hockey to golf” — ya, the entire maple leafs squad.

  260. mike g says:

    So there will be restrictions regarding goaltending equipment next year…

    Call me crazy, but I think this can and probably will benefit a guy like Price. He’s not a goaltender who looks massive in his net due to large equipment. His gear seems relatively proportional to his body. His chest protector looks like the proper size, and so do his pads.

    Believe it or not, some goalies will have to trim down and it will probably affect their games. Halak isn’t a huge guy, but it looks like his chest protector is a little on the big side. I’m not trying to point to this as his downfall, or say that’s why he’s had success. He’s good and he will find ways to adapt like every other goaler. But when you consider that Price is already used to playing with proportional gear, he may have a slight advantage at the start of next year..

    I’m not a goalie, but I know this does affect many parts of a goaltenders game like positioning, rebounds, closing the angles, etc…..Any goalies out there who think it might play a factor for goalies like Halak, Giguere, Fleury, Lundqvist, etc…?

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  261. SeriousFan09 says:

    Toronto’s in for a shocker when the Michelin Man has to trim his pad sizes.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  262. HFX-HabFan says:

    MAB, Metro, and Darche are likely gone.  Subban, Pacioretty and White replace them.  That’s easy and done with.  Moore can be brought back for 1 to 1.5 million.  Aside from the goalies, the other RFAs will get very modest (if any) raises. 

    The key to bringing back Plekanec is moving Hamrlik.  We have to find a team that will take him on.  Gauthier should be working the phones to any listeners:  “Hammer stepped up in Markov’s absence, he’s a great mentor for younger D, he is a great guy to have on your second pairing.  He comes off the books next summer, so if your team is out of contention you can move him at the deadline and salvage a draft pick or a prospect.”

    I still am putting forward the somewhat unpopular notion that we should deal Halak because a) his value is fairly high right now, b) his agent is going to command big bucks, c) teams that need goaltending will look at his playoff/Olympic success, d) I still hold that Price has the higher upside and really just needs a veteran goalie to mentor/platoon with him.

    I’ve floated out other deals in the past involving names like Nathan Horton and David Backes.  We need that type of forward to help out our top six.  If Plekanec hits the market on July 1, Boone is right, he’s as good as gone because someone will throw more money at him than we can.  If he leaves, we still need to move the Kostitsyns and Hamrlik and even Halak to bring in two forwards who can fit in to our top six, and then sign a cheap veteran goalie (Biron? Mason?). 

  263. nickster13 says:

    Why are people still saying trade Halak, he saved our bacon and is more likely to be a stud than Price is right now, forget return, you need someone in nets who the team has confidence in,

  264. TomNickle says:

    Here are the reasons.

    1.  Jaro Halak is incredibly unlikely to duplicate what he did this season.  If he does, it would be an indication that he is the next Dominik Hasek.  Are you willing to make that prediction now?  And before you ask yourself, would you stake the future of the franchise on it?

    2. Money.  Allan Walsh isn’t going to let Jaro Halak sign for a dollar under $5 million annually.  GUARANTEED.  If he’s going to cost that much and we have a goaltender who had similar statistics that we can put in there at $2-3 million annually, it makes more sense both or hockey and business operations.

    3. Value.  This point ties into #1 but it isn’t any less important.  Jaro Halak, as it stands, is highly unlikely to duplicate what he did this season.  Taking that into consideration, his value will never be higher.  If you can flip a 9th round pick into a Jeff Carter, Patrick Sharp, David Backes, YOU DO IT.  No hesitation.

    4. Say you keep Halak and Price.  Say Halak gets injured or his play starts to slip and you’ve got him for the next 3 years at $5 million per.  Say Price comes in and plays the way he did in his rookie season.  Do you have any guarantee that….?

    a)  You can find a trade partner for Halak

    b) That Halak’s agent won’t go grade 3 temper tantrum

    c) That Jaro won’t demand the starting job be given back to him or else.


  265. smiler2729 says:

    Because reality is what it is.

    Halak is not as good as we’ve made him out to be nor is Price as bad as you all want him to be. Whatever the call, it’s all come down to the dough, re, mi now. Halak wants lots of scratch for his efforts this season and Price still has that upside needing to be properly harnessed (maturation).


  266. K-hab25 says:

    Why not? Why can’t he be traded? When did Halak become this holier than holy guy that is greater than the team. The difference between his and Price’s GAA and sv% this year, was .37 and .012. Halak before this year had a career GAA of 2.86, hardly a guy who should be treated like he’s a sacred cow. Either goaltender can be traded, hell if it benefits the team, they both can be traded as far as I’m concerned. No one player is greater than the Team!!!!!

  267. 24 Cups says:

    Bryan – Once again you put words into my mouth. I never stated whether or not we should re-sign Pleks. My question was who would we replace him with if by chance he leaves.

  268. nightmare_49 says:

    Stevie K. – These are your words ” by cheaping out on Pleks in order to sign some lesser talent”? ………. What are you trying to say there.

        Once again when you look at things with your pessimistic blinders on, you narrow things down to the obvious moves, you never have anything creative, to be a NHL GM these days you have to be creative.

  269. smiler2729 says:

    With the way Hab fans eat their young, the pressure on Halak to miraculously repeat his efforts next season is massive. If he stays and is merely normal, the boobirds and critics will be on him.

    His spectacular season here has likely signed his fate as a Hab, ironically.

  270. mike g says:


    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  271. Max_a_million says:

    What they would do to Halak does not even approach what they would do to Price if Halak was moved, and Price Struggled.  I would like to keep Price as I do think he would be cheaper, but I think that the “fans” could make it a huge problem. 

  272. nickster13 says:

    We’re talking probabilities here. the logic says that Halak is more likely to give us better outings next season that price will, thats the bottom line. Sure you can argue what if halak gets injured or doesnt play as well, odds are this will not be the case, things are more likely to continue as they have been, aka halak getting better every year, not getting injured and being a good team guy. and halak is an rfa, he has only so much power to negociate his contract

  273. smiler2729 says:

    That’s why I would sign UFA Marty Turco to be his backup, mentor.

  274. TomNickle says:

    First of all.  Bottom line is not who’s going to play better next season.  Bottom line is who is the best goaltender to take into the future and at what value?  If Jaro Halak is ready to sign a 3 year deal worth $10 million, Gauthier won’t hesitate.

    You really think that Jaro Halak is going to improve on a near .923 save % every season?

    You really think he’s going to carry a team through two playoff rounds every season facing almost 40 shots/night?

    I have two words for you Nickster



  275. mike g says:

    Bingo again…Turco or Biron…

    Keep it up smiler, I’m with ya

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  276. K-hab25 says:

    Well logic coming into the season said that Price would be the guy giving us the better outings. His career #’s were better than Halak’s, but it didn’t happen that way.

  277. mike g says:

    He is an RFA, but if you think he has no power, you are wrong my friend…

    I’m his agent alright, not litterally but just for this debate….

    Me: My client’s, Jaro Halak, stats and overall value have increased incredibly over the past 3 years. His performance in the regualar and postseason last year were exceptional. Kari Lethonen has never been exceptional, and just signed a 3 year deal at 3.9 mill per year. My client is much better, statistics and pressure performances wise, so my client deserves more than 3.9 million. Any objections?…..

    Arbitraitor: Um, no not really. 4 million or more then, at least…

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  278. TomNickle says:

    How about this one?  The Habs generated close to $25 million dollars in playoff revenue from ticket sales alone.  Jaroslav Halak’s play not only got them into the playoffs but greatly contributed to two playoff series victories which allowed the fans of the city to enjoy a total of 8 playoff games.

    $5 million will be the asking price for a contract and will be the award(or close to it)that he will seek and be granted by arbitration.

  279. mike g says:

    I didn’t wanna get into too many details, but yep good one…

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  280. Chris says:

    You’re Michal Neuvirth.  You’ve just won back-to-back Calder Cups in the AHL as a 22 year old. 

    You win the Jack Butterfield Trophy as AHL playoff MVP in 2009 by going 16-6 with a 1.92 GAA (AHL playoff record for Calder Cup winning goalie) and 0.932 SV%.

    You follow that up in 2010 by going 14-4 with a 2.07 GAA and 0.920 SV%.

    You’re stuck behind Semyon Varlamov.  Or does this make Varlamov available in the right circumstances?  Montreal’s not the only team with a pair of good young goalie prospects!  :)

  281. Trisdin says:

    This is why I’m not the GM, but I would trade both Halak and Price just to get 5 top prospects. Not Draft picks (see scouting staff) but blue chips from other teams who are ready to play. The goaltending position this day in the N.H.L is a dice roll no matter who you have in net (see draft round selection for this years top goalies).

  282. Chris says:

    I’m not sure I follow. You seem to be saying that the NHL goaltending situation is a dice roll.  If so, why would any NHL team give you a top prospect ready to play in the NHL straight up for a goalie? 

    Why not just go with what you’ve got and build a strong team in front of that goalie instead?  Perhaps that is the point you’re making.  :)

  283. nickster13 says:

    what it comes down to is, you want a good goalie on your team next year. And as of right now, who are you gonna put your money on. This isnt about Price right now, Im saying Halak being a good goalie next year is more likely than the opposite, and i dont know about you, but i want a good goalie in my nets, forget about well we could get more for halak

  284. Storm Man says:

    I bet you said the samething about Jose also. 

  285. petrov14 says:

    Trade the goalie that fetches you the most. Try to trade the Kostitsyn bros. and What do you think Markov would fetch? Hamrlik’s salary sould also come off the books…..somehow (trade, buy-out).

    I also wouldnt be suprised if the exact opposite happens and it works out well 😛


    ______________________________________ Gionta for Captain.

  286. SuperStarz says:

    looks like someone’s gunnin’ for an all north amreican team lets throw in spacek for the win!!!!

  287. Stuck_in_To. says:

    I have always liked Price and am sorry that he was brought up so young. I think Montreal mishandled that and, much like Latendresse, I am unsure that Price can ever get ontrack here. Trade his potential, lock in Halak, and start looking for that next “can’t miss” goaltending prospect.

    And props to Price for his handling of the playoffs, his demeanour throughout the games he did not play, and his efforts in relief of Halak.

  288. Habsrule1 says:

    I personally think it’s crazy to say Price is ruined for Montreal at 22. All indications were that he was just too immature and a bit lazy. It sounds like that may have been at least somewhat corrected this past playoff season. We had BETTER go into this coming season with Price….unless we get Jeff Carter or something very close in return, but I’d rather we trade Halak for something just as good based on the past 3 years and what I have seen from each of them, not just based on 1 season and playoffs for Halak.

    Bottom line….improve the team with whatever assets we have.

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

  289. Thomas Le Fan says:

    To me it’s a no-brainer. We have two potentially number one netminders. We need a couple of large aggressive forwards who can score. As his postives will never be better, you trade a package that includes Halak, a ninth rounder, if you can get a Patrick Sharp, Dustin Byfuglien, Jeff Carter or player(s) of that nature in return.

  290. namgel says:

    I have nothing against Pleks. He’s a great
    player and probably worth th 5 mil per.  However I think our money would
    be better spent elsewhere.  We have plenty of small gifted forwards. 
    We need a big guy.  Marleau ?  Sharp ?  Trade package for Carter ?  I
    say we let him walk.  Maybe also trade away Markov for some more forward
    depth.  The Subbanator has proven to be just as effective on the PP and
    is a quick young puck moving defensemen.  Plenty of upswing.  Markov is
    also expendable IMO.


    I say, Price, Pleks, Markov, AK and
    SK out

    Marleau and or Carter,  Sharp, Volcenkov in.

    and we
    have a really good team.

  291. Greg says:

    Please explain the comment “Markov is also expendable IMO”.  I realize that it’s in English, but those words in that order don’t make any sense.  


    “I lined up next to him at a faceoff, looked over and said “Hi Rocket”. All he did was growl.”

    -Gordie Howe

  292. TomNickle says:

    Can somebody please explain to me what it is about Jaro Halak that has made him such a great team guy.
    I have tremendous respect for his accomplishments this season. But how in the hell did it get this far?

    I’m sorry, but there’s just something about a guy saying play me more or trade me in the middle of the season that makes me think you know, maybe he isn’t a team guy.

    Fact is, he was a pending RFA this season and he was either going to come in and shine and get paid or sit on the bench and dwindle as a backup or sign a two way deal.

    What he said had nothing to do with where the team was in the standings, Carey Price’s play or how much he wanted the team to win so that the guys around him would feel great.

    I’m not saying he’s a locker room cancer or even a distraction. But he sure as hell is no messiah who’s only goal in the NHL is to make his teammates better.

    And for people about to suggest that management let it out or that the other players might not have known about it.

    Mike Cammalleri sure knew about it and said “it’s too early to tell if it will become a distraction”.

    Now his run this season certainly was great for the team and himself. But nobody complains when you’re winning.

  293. mike g says:

    C’mon Tom, it’s MTL….

    Everyone knows how it goes down in the locker room! We all know who party’s too much, who’s friends with who, and that Halak’s the best teammate!

    I mean seriously! We don’t just sit around here and spit out stuff we don’t know like they do in Montre………..Oh wait, nevermind.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  294. adam76 says:

    Its about results.  Price has had three seasons to prove his worth – he has not.  Halak played inspired hockey all year.  He outworked, outplayed and outperformed Price on every possible level.  Price has more chances then he deserved to win back his “thoroughbred” moniker.  He failed.

    I could give a flying frack if halak is a team guy or any of those other “soft” skills.  Hes the goalie, not on the short list to be captain.

    Trade Price now while you can still get something in return.



  295. Mikey_39 says:

    the fact of the matter is Jaro was not getting the shot he deserved to be a number one goalie.  He was a top goaltender in the AHL two years in a row, but was constantly being pushed aside to give price the shot, even though he had done nothing to earn it.  Good for him for speaking up after being treated like crap by the habs organization for 3 years

  296. ed lopaz says:

    Tom, it is rare that anyone of us can say that we know for certain about a player’s character.

    In almost every case, it is the media, the guys who are in the dressing room for every practice and after every game that come out and tell us about the players, and who is respected and who is not.

    According to the media that follows the Habs, Francois Gagnon, and everyone I follow on RDS, antichambre, Halak was a great teammate , supporting everyone including Carey Price.

    That’s the information that we have – you can choose to accept it or reject it for what it is.

    Further to that, I have told you that I have a close personal relationship with Halak’s goalie coach in lewiston.

    he is a very close friend of Halak’s, so you can argue that he is not objective if you wish.

    He raves about Halak’s work ethic and relationship with his teammates.

    That’s all there is Tom – the media who follow the team every practice and every game, and I have brought Halak’s junior coach’s word to this site.


  297. Trisdin says:

    Because there are still some GMs who believe that good goalies are consistant. I believe goalies are generaly a flash in the pan from one year to the next, so you need a fortune teller to advise the club about who will be a Stanley Cup champion goalie rather than a pose of scouts. Just look at Luongo, Thomas, Kipersoff, Miller, were any of theese goalies worth the millions they earned this year. What if Halak or Price turn out to be our Tim Thomas only we won’t have a Tuko Rask to bail us out. I say cash in on both our goalies and have a team that scores way more than 1 goal a game. 

  298. TomNickle says:

    Actually Sergio, I’m not attacking his character.  I’m asking a question.  People have been saying that he’s a great team guy.  I’d like to know what he’s done to have been given that moniker.

    The only players I’ve read or heard are great team guys are.

    1. Hal Gill

    2. Josh Gorges

    3. Scott Gomez

    Those are the only players I’ve heard or read are team guys that currently play for the Habs.

    I want to know what Halak’s done that’s made him a great team guy.

  299. TomNickle says:

    I could attack his game by saying that he’s incapable of playing the puck and goes down way too early and often.

    But I’m not doing that.

  300. TomNickle says:

    First of all, it isn’t idle gossip.

    Second, you call me a Price fanboy or whatever yet you won’t discuss anything that could potentially put Jaro Halak in any sort of negative light.

    Way to keep it honest Sergio.  

  301. adam76 says:

    In your head:


    rumors about Prices off ice activities, his poor work ethic, his weight – all just gossip

    rumors about Halaks team “spirit” – all  100% tuth to the core.


    You are a fanboy Tom, just admit it.

  302. adam76 says:




  303. Storm Man says:

    Yes we all know your the number one fan of Price, just need to look at your pic.

  304. TomNickle says:

    What are you talking about?


  305. TomNickle says:

    And in what way does that make him a great team guy?

    Very simple question.

  306. mike g says:

    I really don’t think Cammy scored 13 goals in the postseason because Halak was in nets…

    I’m 99.9% sure he did it cuz he wanted to win the Cup.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  307. Storm Man says:

    He has no clue it is a fad with him to say Halak is great ect ect….

  308. TomNickle says:

    Again, what does Markov yelling at Price have to do with Halak as a teammate?

  309. Shublips says:

    Habs have a TON of difficult and important decisions to make this summer.  I did a bit of a poll to ask Habs fans what they would do if they were the Habs GM this summer. 

    Here is part 1 or 5:

    Habs on Facebook: on Twitter:

  310. ddawwidd says:

    If I absolutely HAD TO let one of our goalies go, I would say goodbye to Carey Price. Sorry man, you still rock in my dynasty NHL10 team, but that’t the way it goes.

    Halak proved this spring that he is a very capable goalie with glimpses of utter greatness. He is still young, he will develop, but what’s more important – he can win now. Halak gained some invaluable playoff experience, won some games against very tough opponents. He gives us comfort of finally putting a tick on the goalie position and figuring out how to improve the rest of the team.

    Price, on the other side, while still a very promising and talented goalie has been guided in a completely moronic way and thus damaged. With Price in nets we have yet another season of trying, of developing, of work-in-progressing and all this… erm… stuff I’ve heard about since I became a Habs fan. What’s more, we don’t know if Price’s psyche isn’t damaged so badly that he never recovers.

    I personally think Price won’t ever make it in Montreal. Whatever the reason – bad education at the start of his NHL career, boo-birds in the stands, Philadelphia playoff horror 2 years ago. He needs a San Jose, a Florida or a Tampa to repair his confidence and to play in front of a less passionate (less hysteric) crowd. And now, if we traded him, we would still get some nice return for him. If he screws one more year, he may be worth a box of yoghurt or a pack of kleenex.

    I’m all for Halak right now. Not because I’m European, not because I dislike Price (I quite like the guy), but because it’s best for the team.


    Bring back Zone de Match! :(

  311. HardHabits says:

    HABS: Losing with dignity since ’93!!!

  312. habs001 says:

    last season all the price lovers felt there were about 20 goals that halak should not have stopped…last season all the halak lovers felt there were about 20 goals price should not have stopped…so combining these two groups we should have given up only about 40 goals all season…shows you how dumb these two groups are…looks like who ever we sign or loose it will still result that most of our games will be 2-1,3-2…what we need to work on is much better face off wins at the start of the pp and at the start of the pk…our pp vs pk stats will determine many of our games…martin also has to come up with a better option for the second pp unit…he cannot have gorges as a point man option…it did not work and will not work…we need a forward who can handle that duty….again because of cap issues and lack of internal scoring talent  our 3rd and 4th lines will have 6 forwards that will produce about 6-10 goals each over 82 game sched so we have to be in the top 5 pp and at least top 10 pk…

  313. GuyDoon says:

    The obvious: Buy out Laraque.


    Best case scenario: Sign both goalies for $4.5Mil/yr combined for two years. Sign Pleks for 4yrs/$16Mil. Trade Hamrlik, and both Kostitsyns. Sign Pyatt, Lapierre, Pouliot, Moore for combined $5.5Mil. Let MAB, Mara, Metro and Darche go.

    You get two G, 9 Forwards, 6 D and $9Mil to shop.


    Possibilities:  Can’t sign Pleks?  Trade his rights. Walsh unreasonable with Halak deal? Trade him now. You can’t extend Markov this summer? Trade him now. As great as Gill was in the POs, if someone wants him bad, do it! Go for best value/contract.


    Defensemen UFAs I would look at: Paul Martin (NJ), Anton Volchenkov (Ott), Dan Hamhuis (Nash), Zbynek Michalek (Phx), Johnny Boychuk (Bos)


    Forward UFAs I would look at: Matthew Lombardi (Phx), Tomas Holmstrom (Det), Derek Boogaard (Min), Evgeny Artyukhin (Atl)


    Not many of those guys will still be there on July 1st though.

  314. adam76 says:

    Anyone know the NHL preseason schedule or when it will be finalized?

  315. Chuck says:

    Before you decide on which goalie to re-sign, and how much you’re willing to pay them (if you don’t want to keep both, that is) you have to ask the question: is Jaro the goalie who near-stoned the Caps in three straight games, or the one who had a below .900 sv% in a third of his playoff games… including three of those well below .800? 


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  316. mike g says:

    Alrighty then…

    Here’s a list of tier 2 group UFA’s from this years crop, IMO. They come with a lower pricetag than group 1, but can be key players if successful. If we would pursure 2 of them, which would interest you the most between..:

    -Olli Jokinen, Vinny Prospal, Demitra, V Kozlov, Derrik Morris, S Koivu, Modin, A Sutton, Frolov, Cullen, Nolan, Corvo, Bertuzzi…

    My choices: Jokinen and Morris.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  317. petrov14 says:

    TSN has Montreal’s OFF SEASON GAME PLAN.

    ______________________________________ Gionta for Captain.

  318. Storm Man says:

    Mike do you think Jokinen would wake up here and be the player some think he can? and what line do you put him on? 

  319. SeriousFan09 says:

    Jokinen has shown a lack of ability to compete when it matters. I honestly don’t think a single name on that list should end up on our roster, as much as I miss Saku, I think he’s had enough with the pressure of Montreal.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  320. fuhgawz says:

    Corvo and Bert

  321. mike g says:

    I don’t know if you can figure that out without playing out a few seasons…

    But look at Price. Everyone forgets he had an incredible run to the Calder Cup, and was able to seal the deal in those finals. He then came to MTL and played great his 1st year with a 24-12 record, led us to 1st place in the East, and basically allowed us to trade Huet at the deadline and go with Price for the future…

    Sound familiar? Kinda like the year Halak just had, no? Price’s game hasn’t been the same as it was before, but he’s still extreamly young. He’s got 18 years left of pro hockey, that’s a ton.

    So we saw how a goaltender can look brilliant and lights out one year, and fade the next. Theo’s another example. Do we wanna trade Price, keep Halak and sign him to a 5 mill$ deal for 4 years, and basically cross our fingers that the same situation doesn’t repeat itself? Or do we trade him for a player who’s proven consistency at his role?

    That’s how I look it at it.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  322. mike g says:

    It would depend on the contract…

    Nothing over 2 million, and depending what happens with Pleks. I just don’t see anything wrong with him at 1.5 mill, heck we signed Laraque to that!

    But I still think a team will shoot him 3 or 3.5 mill. I know he has certain issues, but if the price is decent, I think I’d gamble on a 2 year 3.5 or 4 mill deal…

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  323. Mikey_39 says:

    Saku and Frolov.  Saku because I miss him and nobody makes an entrance with the kids like he does.  Spacek tries but he just looks akward doing it.

    Frolov because of his history with cammy

  324. Mikey_39 says:

    There was a TOP 5 hardest players to coach in the NHL.  Kovalev was on it, and I think Jokinen was near the top. We have such good chemistry in the locker room why bring in someone who might destroy that

  325. mike g says:


    Corvo, Morris, and Jokinen could be the best investments if they sign for 2 mill or less on a short term deal…

    Bert, well I put him there cuz people seem to like the guy, but I just can’t stand him. Lazy player

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  326. jimmy shaker says:

    MAB is way better offensively and alot cheaper!  Bert is staying with the wings!


  327. Chuck says:

    If Halak has a $5-million cap hit for the Habs going into next season, I’ll eat my hat.


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  328. mike g says:

    Spacek does try abit too hard, lol…

    I like the guy don’t get me wrong, but theres just something about his face…..He always looks pissed, out of breath, and as if someone smashed him in the face with a pan.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  329. mike g says:

    Could be…

    And I’m sure JM is very aware if that’s the case from his Florida days…

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  330. K-hab25 says:

    Jokinen and Corvo. Jokinen is 6′ 3 and has scored 29 or more goals in 4 of his 5 seasons in the NHL. Corvo is a good puck moving defenseman that could qb the second pp with Spacek. I would love Koivu to come back and be 3rd line centerman, but I doubt he wants to come back.

  331. fuhgawz says:

    why hasn’t Lacrap been bought out yet? —

  332. WarHero says:

    Here is my take on the situation …

    The goalies:

    Jaro Halak – Trade him at the draft for a 1st and 2nd round pick. Use the 1st round pick to get Boone’s man :)

    Carey Price – Sign him to new contract with no increase (2.2 mill per). He will be the stud we think he can be.

    The RFA’s / UFA’s:

    Tomas Plekanec – Re-sign him (4 mill per), we cannot afford to lose him. If he walks, try to get Marleau.

    Tom Pyatt – Re-sign him with a slight increase (1 mill per)

    Dominic Moore – Re-sign him with an increase (1.5 mill per)

    Mathieu Darche – Re-sign him to a 2 way contract (max amount), good guy to have in a pinch

    Glen Metropolit – Re-sign him with an slight increase (1.2 mill per)

    Marc-André Bergeron – Don’t re-sign him

    Paul Mara – Don’t re-sign him

    By my calculations, that leaves a total of 3.1 mill left over to re-sign RFA’s: Lapierre, Pouliot and a back-up goal tender (Desjardins or Sanford)

    I would also like to see the Kostitsyns shipped out and Frolov signed to play with Cammy and Pleks :)


    Never judge another man’s decision poor until you have proof of it failing!

  333. Greg says:

    Don’t forget that Halak was pulled once in every series.  Before I get firebombed for that sentence, it’s true he played out of his mind for most of the playoffs, and was a big reason the Habs got so far.  BUT… One season/playoff run isn’t enough to make him our starter for the foreseeable future! (although one bad playoff run seems enough to condemn a guy…Price).  

    Their regular season numbers were VERY similar:

    HALAK GAA-2.40, SV%-.924

    PRICE GAA-2.77, SV%-.912

    The big difference is in Ws (Halak 26-13-5, Price 13-20-5) which is a mind-bogglingly stupid stat for a goaltender.  Goalies don’t lose games, teams do.  Basically there is a 0.37 goals per game difference between Halak and Price.  So remember when you say trade one guy or the other, as far as goals go, Price let in one more goal than Halak about every 3 games.  Not a huge a difference, and this is what scouts and GMs mean when they say Price has more potential.  He’s being sold up the river by fans in Montreal because the team made Halak look good, and made Price look bad.  The numbers don’t lie.  

    They’re BOTH great goalies. Despite all the arguments on here, there’s no good reason to trade either one right now.



    “I lined up next to him at a faceoff, looked over and said “Hi Rocket”. All he did was growl.”

    -Gordie Howe

  334. Greg says:

    Don’t forget that Halak was pulled once in every series.  Before I get firebombed for that sentence, it’s true he played out of his mind for most of the playoffs, and was a big reason the Habs got so far.  BUT… One season/playoff run isn’t enough to make him our starter for the foreseeable future! (although one bad playoff run seems enough to condemn a guy…Price).  

    Their regular season numbers were VERY similar:

    HALAK GAA-2.40, SV%-.924

    PRICE GAA-2.77, SV%-.912

    The big difference is in Ws (Halak 26-13-5, Price 13-20-5) which is a mind-bogglingly stupid stat for a goaltender.  Goalies don’t lose games, teams do.  Basically there is a 0.37 goals per game difference between Halak and Price.  So remember when you say trade one guy or the other, as far as goals go, Price let in one more goal than Halak about every 3 games.  Not a huge a difference, and this is what scouts and GMs mean when they say Price has more potential.  He’s being sold up the river by fans in Montreal because the team made Halak look good, and made Price look bad.  The numbers don’t lie.  

    They’re BOTH great goalies. Despite all the arguments on here, there’s no good reason to trade either one right now.


    “I lined up next to him at a faceoff, looked over and said “Hi Rocket”. All he did was growl.”

    -Gordie Howe

  335. smiler2729 says:

    If I were Pierre Gauthier I’d gain some weight… but then I’m home with pneumonia and have lost 10 lbs in a week so who am I to talk eh?

  336. K-hab25 says:

    The career #’s are even closer. Halak 2.66 GAA with a .919 SV% and Price has a 2.72 GAA with a .912 SV%. Keep in my mind how much this year helped Halaks #’s aswell, his GA was over 2.80 and SV% .914 before this year. It is mind blowing how some are so convinced that Halak is elite and Price is a washed up never was, when there career #’s are almost identical and Price is 22, Halak is 25.

  337. K-hab25 says:

    The career #’s are even closer. Halak 2.66 GAA with a .919 SV% and Price has a 2.72 GAA with a .912 SV%. Keep in my mind how much this year helped Halaks #’s aswell, his GA was over 2.80 and SV% .914 before this year. It is mind blowing how some are so convinced that Halak is elite and Price is a washed up never was, when there career #’s are almost identical and Price is 22, Halak is 25.

  338. Habsrule1 says:

    I’m still going with the team played better in front of Halak just being a total fluke, but you can also twist it to say they play better in front of him because they don’t have confidence in him, and want to give themselves a better chance of winning. Any of these things can be twisted any way we want them to be.

    And saying Price is as good as traded is simply a guess, like everyone else is doing. If I had any money, i’d bet Halak is the one who gets traded, but there are very good arguements for both.

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

  339. Shiloh says:

    Is this Habs Inside Out or Price Lovers Inside Out? How can the question even be asked? Duhhhhhh – should we keep the good goalie who got us into the playoffs singlehandedly the past two years while playing less than half the time? Should we keep the guy who got us to the Conference final? Or – ummmmmmm should we keep the guy who has been unable to get the job done? Tough question – NOT!

  340. SeriousFan09 says:

    Says the guy who never stops defending Andrei Kostitsyn. You have got to be the most confusing poster around here, convinced AK is an elite talent waiting to break out, but convinced Carey Price, drafted two years after him will never make anything of himself.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  341. Habsrule1 says:

    Wow…very blind way to look at it, Shiloh. do we keep the 22 year old who has some of the best staats for a 22 year old in his first 3 seasons in the history of the NHL, or a guy who is 25 and has just had 1 terrific season?

    How about trading the goalie that will make your team the best it can possibly be and still have a very good goalie themselves?

    Look at career numbers, then decide who you think has a greater potential because he is bigger, stronger, better rebound control and better puck handling.

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

  342. Chuck says:

    He almost had us OUT of the playoffs singlehandedly… or did you not watch that last game of the regular season vs. the Laffs?

    Halak is a good young goalie who’s yet to prove that he can be consistent over extended stretches of games. Nothing more, nothing less.

    And for the record, I’d love to have Halak on the team next season, as well as Price. But PG can’t get blinded by all of the hype and overpay for him, either.


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  343. bwoar says:

    Frolov and Prospal, easily.

  344. since1988 says:

    hypothetically if i had to deal with the cap and could make trades i know that would be accepted (as if it were NHL10 the video game) i would trader hammer to FLA and try to get Vokun back in return. Both have expiring contracts according to NHL numbers Vokun makes 200K more. So we stay take the cap hit but then trade Halak who will fetch us more in return and still have a more then adequate starter in Vokun to play if Price sucks. Halak can hopefully fetch us a reasonably priced top 6 young forward and a prospect then next summer vokuns contract is off the books.

    I know this probably seems crazy but if we want to trade Hammer to free cap space we will have to give a team a pick or prospect. By trading for Vokun we are solidifying if only for one more year the teams goltending and then gives us the freedom to trade Halak to say st louis for Backes since as it has been speculated they could potentially be in the market for a goaltender.

    Now vice versa if we keep Halak and let Pleks go try and trade Hammer to a team with an aging C who has a similar contract again it would be temporary giving us what many people would probably describe as two 2nd line centreman however it meets a temporary need for the season and will free up cap space in summer 2011.

    And then trade price and see what kind of player we can get in return.

    I am all for letting O’Byrne dress every game and i see this as the best solution to adressing both goaltending and top 6 forwards at the same time. Unfortunately i don’t know how easy it will be to get rid of Hammer’s contract and if worse came to wrose i would keep A Kostitsyn another season if he can contribute 20 goals thats at least something

  345. pic1983 says:

    PRICE GAA-2.77, SV%-.912

    those numbers are better than some playoff teams starting goaltenders! People dont seem to realize that.  Most of Careys losses came from lack of goal support.

    All these price haters are killing me, but I think most people realize that shopping both of them and trading the one that nets the highest return is the best move.  Personally, as Ive said many times, unless we get a kings ransom, i dont see the benefit in trading either. 

  346. since1988 says:

    plz no Ponikarovsky he couldnt play with Crosby how do people expect him to fit in with us

  347. smiler2729 says:

    You are shortsighted. It’s time to give up the Halak vs. Price thing, that was last season and Halak won. It’s reality time, now, agents, contract requests, GMs, the future, what fits for the club, etc.

    If you think a couple of extraordinary playoff wins cements anything, wake up. We want what’s best for the team continuing to play this way and Jaro and Walsh are going to be wanting an unreasonable raise while Carey Price, given a break or two, coulda had the season Halak had. He has the ability, has proven it at every level (etc…) and has been nothing but team guy since Halak was made #1.

    No man, see it for what it is. We need another Dryden and Roy not another Theodore and Huet. All the signs point to 22 year old Carey Price being that guy.

  348. pic1983 says:

    If halak has a $5million dollar cap hit for the habs going into next season im changing team loyalties on the grounds of managerial incompetence!  theres only so much I can take haha


    I think its safe to say that even though im not the biggest PG fan at all, I dont think hes THAT stupid. 

  349. j2w4habs25 says:

    I totally disagree with you, yes am thankful for all Halak did this season. The thing is Price has shown he can get it done by winning in the international hockey and also with the bulldogs. He shown us the other good season and playoff acouple years ago and Halak just got this one year. I just dont see Halak doing a better job as Price in the future. Price has a better resume then Halak and plus this guy is younger and is a Canadian.

    This is our chance in getting something good for Halak – he does have a better value right now after that good performance this past year. So really this isnt a tough question and plus I’ve saw articals with Canadien legends supporting Carey. As fans we all should show the support he needs. Everyone knows what kinda goalie he can be, and that he is. You can call this website Price inside out but  its just what it is… i can say the same about Halak but I aint. But if they are going to sign Halak, they really should sign Price and see who gets the net for the Canadiens, and whoever doesnt make it then we can just trade them Feb 2011

    I just dont see Halak doing the job in the future… and if they get rid of Carey then watch out.. everyone will be crying and bagging him to come back… and it wont happen. Its just going to be one big mistake.

  350. ed lopaz says:

    here is my opinion. halak is the favorite goalie of THIS COACH.

    when JM thinks about this season, and how he almost did not make the playoffs, but instead he knocked off Washinton and Pittsburgh, JM thinks about Halak between the pipes.

    Its that simple. halak will be signed, even if it is for 1 season, he will be signed.

    what the team does with their back up goalie, is a function of what the other teams are prepared to offer in return.

    I have a feeling that there is NOT a great market for teams trying to trade 22 year old goalies who just LOST THEIR NUMBER 1 spot in the NHL.

    teams will have questions about price and therefore will be unwilling to give us what we want.

    by the same token, all of the questions about halak that you guys are asking, will be asked by the GM’s as well, lowering his trade value.

    Goalies are VERY HARD TO TRADE – because their performance slips very easily.

    Both goalies will be signed.

    by the trade deadline, we will have another 50 games to judge whether Halak continues to perform.

    if he falters, price will be given every opportunity to grab back his # 1 spot.

    Habs hockey = Smart hockey we work as a team, and we win as a team. we play 5 man defence – not just 2.

  351. smiler2729 says:


    Why? Dude, we need less Euros and more down home grit.

  352. HardHabits says:

    If the Habs do the following they have achance:

    Trade Price for Carter

    Sign Halak

    Let Plex walk

    See if Saku wants to re-sign (but not as captain nor assistant captain)

    Sign Dominic Moore. Sign Metropolit as a role player. Sign MaxLaps.

    Try and sign Volchecnkov

    Trade Markov for a top six forward.

    Buy-out Hamrlik and Akostitsyn and make a play for Kovalchuck.

  353. TomNickle says:

    This is in no way an attack on Jaro Ed but did he not hint to the media that he wouldn’t be signing unless he was the unquestioned #1 with no Price behind him?

  354. HardHabits says:

    And that is how it should be. If the reverse is done say hello to the draft lottery!!

  355. Chuck says:

    You must be looking for Halak Inside/Out, not Habs Inside/Out.

    The thread is about discussing the goaltending situation… which is exactly what we’re doing.


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  356. ed lopaz says:

    not entirely certain about the exact quote, but what I

    understand is that he would like to be considered a #1.

    whether price was in that quote, i could not tell you.

  357. TomNickle says:

    Then my question to you and HardHabits is this.

    If Jaro Halak is confident in his ability to repeat this seasons’ performance.  Why should it matter to him whether Price is behind him or not?

    Ed, in your case I realize you aren’t lobbying for Price to be shipped out of town on the first thing moving, but I’m curious for your thoughts nonetheless.

    In your case Hardhabits, you’re just stepping in it and don’t realize it.

  358. hipster says:





  359. ooder says:

    so you want to downgrade our defense by trading markov and then tie up salary cap for Volchenkov, who isn’t nearly as good as Markov???


    “I like what I’m seeing right now,” assessed Markov. “We’re not perfect, but we’re trying to be.”

  360. Max_a_million says:

    Jaro is restricted.  What he does next season is up to the Canadiens. 

  361. since1988 says:

    for no reason other then he too has an expiring contract similar in $ value as hammer it would be pretty much the same if we kept hammer and paid him it was just thought…i see one of the goalies getting traded and if thats the case you still need to find a backup…also if i didnt state it clearly enough i would love for some team to just take hammer off our hands to free up the cap space its going to cost us so in return we might as well try to get a player that fills some type of need and not give up a pick or prospect but to do that it would require an older player who is still making a contract they probably arent worth…but agreed i think we need to get grittier up front too but that need can be meet by trading one of the goaltenders

  362. Storm Man says:

    You can go to the family guy site if that would make you happy. BTW cheer for the team and not some name on the back of it.

  363. Max_a_million says:

    Kovalchuck is asking for a lot more money than we have available.

    Carter and a top 6 are also probably more money than we have available. 

  364. Chorske says:


    Sense I got was that this kind of major operation was not in the cards.

    Saku? Volchenkov? Who are either of those guys supposed to be an improvement on? The Bring Back Saku idea is like sleeping with an ex- it seems like a good idea until immediately AFTER you do it.

  365. Max_a_million says:

    You want the anti-pice fake fan that wants to ruin our team by bashing our players site.


  366. mike g says:

    Not really…

    His agent and current situation is the problem. His value is extreamly high, highest it will ever be. Everyone knows this in the hockey world, and he will get paid accordingly.

    Whether it’s in MTL or elsewhere, he’ll get 5+ mill.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  367. Max_a_million says:

    You are correct sir.

  368. Storm Man says:

    That is Price not Jaro he can cash in.

  369. zozotheclown says:

    EDIT: Sorry for length, I got bored 😛

    My first choice to be to do whatever it takes to sign both for a reasonable price. If things get to expensive, then a choice will have to be made. I think when evalutating both goalies on who will be your future, you have to look at them like stocks. Since both goalies bring so much talent to the table, I think it will be easier to analyze them by looking at the risk inherent in taking either as our guy.

    Halak has done amazing things for us this year, he’s played beyond what anyone expected and earned some very prestigious comparisons between he and the greats such as Roy and Dryden. While I think some of this is deserved, I see far more similarities between Halak and Theodore then I do between he and Roy. And before Halakites take that the wrong way, lets remember that Theodore was absolutely amazing at one point. I see these two as very similar for 2 reasons, firstly, they have very similar styles in that they are both very quick and use reflexes and speed to get around the net and make saves. Secondly, they are both smallish goalies who do not have the size of some of the bigger goalies in the league. The risk with sticking with Halak from here on in arises because of that fact, these are reflex goaltenders who need tip top reflexes and speed to play at their amazng level. As he ages, I fear the reflexes will be the first thing to go, for bigger goalies this isn’t such a big deal, as they can rely on positioning and size to make most saves, but for a smaller goalie, it can make things alot harder. Lets take a look,

    Of these goalies all are speed/reflex goalies aside from Hasek, so I won’t consider him. When looking at this list I see a trend, all are goalie who started great but quickly declined as they passed 30 and started to lose their reflexes. You can be as fit and hard working as you want, its a natural part of aging and very hard to avoid. The notable exception is Richter, who did quite well his entire career. We can all hope Halak is another rare exception, but I think we have to agree that there is a large risk factor if we want him to be our guy long term, because he may very well end up like the rest of that list. That said, I think he can still be a VERY good goalie for 4 to 5 more years.

    Price is the safer bet as a long term investment, but there is also a big risk here, in this case the risk is that he never reaches that full potential many see in him. I understand many state his pedigree and acheivments as reasons he will undoubtedly succeed, but I’m not convinced. He has a WJC, sure, but in that tournament I think its fair to say the only other decent team is the USA, so a gold or silver medal is near guaranteed. If I remember correctly, although he had a good tournament, he didn’t exactly win the team a gold, the game went to shootout and he was beaten repeatedly while Toews scored non stop for Canada. I don’t like judging a goalie by a shootout, but its hard for me to say he was a major reason for Canada’s win, and so that resumé accomplishment is a bit tainted for me. Next is the Calder, he had a great run again, but he was jumping onto a team that was already a first place team with Yann Danis in nets. Not to soil another accomplishment, but if you can be first with Danis, you better win with Price. As much as the cup looks great on the ol resumé, to me he only proved he was a good goalie, better then Danis, not a great goalie. So anyway my problem with choosing Price is that he may very well never reach the level we all want him to, he was drafted 5th, but Pouliot was 4th, things don’t always work out.

    I think the final decision comes down to what you want from your goaltending, if you want great goaltending for a few years, pick Halak. If you want good but potentially great goaltending for many years go with Price. My personal choice would be to take the sure bet great goalie and immediately look to draft a kid. That way, 5 years down the road, should Halak follow the trend, theres a young talent waiting whose spent the right amount of years learning in the minors.

  370. Chris says:


    When you are playing fantasy GM, there are a few rules to keep in mind:



    1. Top 5 draft picks are off the table, in general…the rare times they are on the table, you pay a significant price for them.
    2. Everybody is optimistic in the summer…so unless Mike Milbury is involved, the other team should not get fleeced…if it looks incredibly one-sided to you, me and Boone, it will probably look that way to the rival GM as well.  This rule occasionally flies out the window at the trade deadline.
    3. Salary situations do matter.  Therefore a very good player on an affordable contract signed for another three years (e.g. Nathan Horton) commands a hefty premium over and above their already significant worth on their hockey skillset alone.
    4. Veteran players on big contracts (e.g. Roman Hamrlik) are hard to move in the summer…they carry much more value at the trade deadline.
    5. As much as people want to believe it is not the case, goalies simply do not carry much value in trades.
    6. Unhappy players can occasionally be obtained for below their value.
    7. Teams that expect to make playoff runs are more likely to want experienced veterans, while teams in building mode are looking to add more prospects and young players while being unlikely to part with their own prized youngsters.
    8. GMs that have not had a history of making silly trades aren’t likely to start doing so now that we need their player.
    9. Players with baggage are usually traded for other players with baggage.  Players with baggage are rarely traded for upstanding hockey citizens.
    10. GMs that are under pressure from their fan base and/or ownership to start winning (or else!) are the ones most likely to ignore these rules and make the stupid trades from which all fans hope their team comes out the indisputable winner.

    So by my rules of Fantasy General Managing, Sergei Kostitsyn (headcase) and Carey Price/Jaroslav Halak (goalie) aren’t likely to bring much in return.  Andrei Kostitsyn perhaps could, as he’s shown he can be a perennial 20 goal scorer when healthy.

    If we want one of the few established young stars with a nice affordable salary on a team building towards a playoff berth (such as Ales Hemsky or Nathan Horton), the cost is going to be sky high…like multiple players and prospects/picks high.  Like P.K. Subban high.

    If you do want to fleece somebody, look at the GMs who are probably feeling the most heat and pressure from their boss or fan base to significantly improve their team:  Glen Sather in New York, Mike Gillis in Vancouver, Darryl Sutter in Calgary…anybody else?  Those are probably the teams we should be targeting in these trade fantasies, if they have any players of interest to the Habs.

  371. Chorske says:

    way to keep an open mind about it though

  372. alestar says:

    I just can’t agree with any of that…


    XXIV…and counting

  373. K-hab25 says:

    You know is well as I do if you don’t worship Halak, than you’re opinion doesn’t matter Chuck. I mean I have stated for awhile if we could get Carter for Price I’ll help him pack. Meanwhile if I even mention the possibility of trading Halak, his worshippers freak out. The sky starts falling and the world is coming to end and yet you and I are the “fanboys.” Halak is good, but he ain’t that damn good.

  374. Chorske says:

    Like Hossa?

    More anti-euro nonsense. I expected better.

  375. Max_a_million says:

    No not at all, he is a restricted free agent.

    His choices are:

    (a) sign a long term contract with the Canadiens

    (b) sign a short term contract with the Canadiens

    (c) go to arbitration

    The Canadiens may choose to

    (d) trade him

    (e) not sign him if they don’t like the arbitration number

    He is restricted this is how it works.  He is not eligible to sign a contract with anyone else when the Canadiens hold his rights. 

  376. Storm Man says:

    Guess you did not make the grade.

  377. RC-51 says:

    We gave him away for nothing,now you want to give something to get him back? WHY?

  378. mike g says:


    Anyone with a brain knows that Halak will get 5+ million on a multi year deal.

    And anyone with a brain knows it’s not smart management to throw money around like that to a goaltender at the peak of his value, who hasn’t proved he can do this for 5 straight years. Salary cap my friend…

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  379. HFX-HabFan says:

    Dude, I had been advocating for a trade to get Vokoun (albeit with Horton as well) from FLA even before the season wrapped up!  Awesome that you think he’d be a good target too!

    He’s the perfect guy to platoon/mentor Price.  If Price struggles, he’s a more than capable number one guy who has had some of the best SV% and shutout totals in the league since the lockout while playing for mediocre at best teams.  He also played great for the Czechs at both the Olympics and the “world championships”. 

    Obviously Hammer and the Ks would have to be moved out of town to have any hope of making salary room for Vokoun (let alone Horton), but then next summer he would come off the books, Desjardins could be promoted to be Price’s backup, and we have nearly 6 million to put towards a Markov extension/other RFA contracts.

  380. since1988 says:

    its really just rambling trying to come up with some type of solution to meet the needs of club it seems a consensus on this board here is to get rid of hammer which i would agree with i am just suggesting that to do so would require us to give up something as in a pick because i don’t see many teams wanting his 5.5 million on the books all season, i feel our defense if healthy should still be decent with PK playing full time and giving O’Byrne some more minutes

    so y not get something in return that may help us such as a temporary centremen or another goalie (either with an expiring contract) in return for hammer

    i dont see a team giving up someone young who will still be useful in the future it was merely a suggestion because i saw the contract similarity

    essentially if you want to dump that 5.5million you are going to take some type of salary in return unless you want to give another team some picks

  381. since1988 says:

    thanks it really is hypothetical but if Price becomes essentially our number 1 because halak is traded for a better return then you dont just want to anoint price as number 1 again he should still work for it which free agent goalies would give us that?

  382. habsgod says:

    i agree on 2 of the 3 teams that we should target ,however i’d stay away from sather he’s raped more gm’s the green river killer! and he’d definatley rob gauthier and make him another victim!

  383. mike g says:

    OK listen….

    He will go to arbitration, I guarantee it. Unless the Habs throw him 4.5+ million, he’s going infront of the judge. So option “C” is where he can get his big paycheck, which according to his past performance and market value, he will get big money.

    And the Habs will have to match an offer sheet if they don’t trade him or sign him to a logical deal. Because you can bet ur house teams will send some sheets. Remember Dustin Penner following his 30 goal season and Cup win? Remember Thomas Vanek after his 40 goal season?…

    That’s right, offer sheets cuz market value and arbitration bite your team in the butt. Both those guys are making over 5 mill btw, and haven’t produced anything since….

    I’m sorry, but I don’t want that situation.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  384. Chuck says:

    He hasn’t even proven that he can do it for ONE straight year.


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  385. newbrunswick troy says:

    Chris well put..i would have said the exact same thing, with a maybe a few more sware words and a comment about that guys avatar with the to hotties kissing each other…but other than that ..bang on

    oh and maybe a reference to no more europeans….ha ha just joking!!!

  386. ed lopaz says:

    no player in a restricted free agent situation should be telling management anything like that, Tom.

    Halak wants to the # 1 – he is comepetitive, and at least as of today, he has earned it.

    He has no right to tell management that he won’t play if price is the backup – none!!

    Halak is confident, but his status is still restricted.

    I’m out now to coach my midget baseball team – its a beautiful night in montreal, the team is 4-0,

    and the Habs never listen to me any way. :-)

    seriously, the prudent thing to do is sign both goalies.

    halak will NOT GET 5 million in arbitration, Tom.

    I don’t think any arbitrator is that far off – he deserves around 3.75 to 4 million from an arbitrator. IMHO

  387. Chorske says:

    Great post Chris.

    I’d add a rule that I mentioned earlier- that the best trades are the ones that help both teams.

    I’d also add that when looking for trade partners, you need to match up teams with opposite pressures. For instance, Chicago make terible trade partners with MTL because they have many of the same issues- too many goalies and a huge cap crunch.

  388. Storm Man says:

    Do you need a hug or maybe a cookie so you have a better day?

  389. TomNickle says:

    The market dictates that he will receive much more than Kari Lehtonen Ed.

    Anyway, enjoy the game.

  390. Chris says:

    While there are rumblings of lots of trade talks this spring, I somehow suspect that the end result will be much ado about nothing.  It is really hard to swing a trade.

    I should have mentioned San Jose as an active trade partner, actually.  Another disappointing loss in the playoffs and a closing window on their veteran core.  And they are run by a GM (Doug Wilson) that has never been shy to make a move to better his club.

    Dean Lombardi with the Los Angeles Kings is another hyper-aggressive GM that has a young, exciting team poised to make some noise.  But I have a feeling the noise he will make this summer will be on the free agent market…I can see him going after Marleau or Plekanec to back up Kopitar.  That being said, the Kings still have lots of young prospects on their way up, so they might have some assets if the right deal presented itself.  I just don’t see that we have the players in Montreal that they could want.  They’ve got goalie depth, better forward depth than Montreal and more exciting prospects.

  391. Storm Man says:

    Halak is not the problem, It is his agent he see’s huge dollers for his guy and he want’s to get it. Jose got 16 mil over 3 years after he won the MVP in 2002, Halak 12 mil over 3 years that would make most fans happy even the price fan club.  

  392. GuyDoon says:

    That’s how Florida got something for JBow when they knew they couldn’t sign him. That’s how Nashville got something for Hartnell and Timonen a few years earlier. In both cases, the team who got the rights immediately signed the players to new deals. Remember a certain Matt Sundin’s rights from TO to MTL?

    At least you don’t end up with nothing.

  393. TomNickle says:

    San Jose, without Nabakov, needs a goalie to put them over the top, NOW.

    Granted they can get Turco or Mason if they hit the market but I don’t think that Doug Wilson will consider either of those goalies an upgrade over Nabakov.  Fetching a top 6 forward from that organization at the draft or free agency isn’t far fetched at all.

    St.Louis is actually in the same boat considering that they have a good mixture of young guns and veterans.

    Dallas is in dire need of a playoff berth and the revenue that accompanies it.  They need a veteran defenseman.

    There are teams with holes to fill just like we have holes to fill.

    There are teams that need to not only shed money from their cap but also to get to the cap floor by spending money.

    Horton is a problem in Florida, I’m assuming he is since he and an assistant coach nearly came to blows shortly after the trade deadline.  Teams won’t be overpaying for him.



  394. Storm Man says:

    Now your acting like a donkey.

  395. SeriousFan09 says:

    Wow, someone went off the rails today.

    Trade a Top 10 NHL defencemen for a top 6 forward? That’s not getting fleeced at all, did you use the Mike Milbury Trade Generator? You just took the weight of carrying the Habs Defence off of a 9-year veteran and dropped it on Subbans’ head, isn’t this the kind of thing you were against when Price was brought up too early? Volchenkov can play defensive defencemen better than anyone we’ve had in over a decade but he can’t do anything that Markov did for us.

    Kovalchuk doesn’t fit the team that’s in place either, I doubt he’d mesh any better with JM than he did with Lemaire in NJ.

    Enough of this “Markov is injury-prone” crap as well if you’re going to bring it up, he missed 24 games in the first 4 years post-lockout and most of those were in the 05-06 season. This was a bad year for him, but it was a bad fall and an errant skate that cost him, he’s not suddenly become a glass sculpture.

    Koivu isn’t coming back as well, he gave us everything he had to give but I think he’s had enough of Montreal and the impossible expectations he had to carry for so many years. He wants to finish his NHL career having fun I think.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  396. mike g says:

    Jose never made the conference finals with an 8th place team.

    Jose also didn’t beat teams that included Ovi, Sid, and Geno.

    Add those to the fact that Kari Lethonen, yup the guy who plays 20 games per year and hasn’t proven anything, just got 3.9 mill per year, and Jaro ain’t gonna get 4 mill. He’ll get much more than 3.9.

    His agent will surely use Kari as an example. And nobody has a counter argument to prove him wrong.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  397. nightmare_49 says:

    SF09 – JM and Jokinen have already butted heads in Florida, Olie is not looking for a rematch.

  398. citizenSanto says:

    sorry HH, but is this post serious?




    Hope has two beautiful daughters. Their names are anger and courage; anger at the way things are, and courage to see that they do not remain the way they are.
    — Augustine of Hippo

  399. Chuck says:

    I’m sorry… did I sleep through that second year where Halak ended the season as their starter?


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  400. mike g says:

    I never said to do that…

    All I’m saying is if you’re willing to give Jaro a long-term contract at 5 mill per year, because that is what he will get because of the market value, then you’re not managing properly.

    Throw 5 mill at a guy who’s had one good year. I’ll tell you what, even if he plays very well, 5 mill will then be too much. Cuz you signed him at his highest value point, you’ll always look bakc and say “we signed him for that much cuz that’s what he did that year. Now he’s good, but 5 mill is alot.”

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  401. Chuck says:

    Tell that to Philly… they could have used three.  😉


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  402. HardHabits says:

    What are young prospects worth? Obviously the only way to build a team is to languish in the middle of the pack and trade picks for stop gap journeymen. All this talk of prospects is infantile. Look at all those teams that picked numerous times at the top of the draft heap. Where are they now? Hunh, Pittsburgh and Chicago? You’re laughing now but wait. In a few years you guys will be languishing at the bottom of the standings and the Habs will be sneeking into the playoffs again and again. MUHUHUHAHAHAHAHAHA!

  403. Chris says:

    Dallas, with all of Tom Hicks’ financial woes, are not likely to spend to the cap this season. So I doubt they are going to be looking at Hamrlik’s contract.

    I can’t see Nabokov leaving San Jose. But if he does, Chris Mason would be an excellent fit there. If they can get Mason for money only versus trading assets for Halak or Price (neither of whom is any better than Mason on paper, in my opinion…they might have better long-term potential but as you said, San Jose wants to win now), I think they have to go with Mason.

    Regarding Horton, it is easier to replace an assistant coach than it is to replace a player of Horton’s calibre. DeBoer has been high on Nathan Horton all through Horton’s career, having first met him when he was 7 years old.

  404. SeriousFan09 says:

    Pittsburgh’s got no scoring wingers worth a damn, wasted a 2nd overall pick in 2006, has few scoring prospects and is either going to take a damaging cap hit to retain Gonchar or trade/bid desperately for a new PP quarterback. They’ve got two offensive superstars and possibly the best 3rd-line centre in the NHL, but little else besides the inconsistent MAF. Chicago is a far superior club in terms of depth, even after they unload contracts.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  405. nightmare_49 says:

    Chris – Did you create this post after reading Atul Ganande’s Checklist Manifesto.

        Your list is pretty basic and seems logical but this summer with so many teams close to the salary cap and with expensive players on their roster more GMs are trying to work out salary dump trades to free up money for them to make a decent normal transaction. If they are successful a lot can happen this summer. The Ryan Smyth trade last summer started many GMs to think differently as it was good for both parties.

       I can’t see PG going after any of the so called big names on the weak UFA list but i do expect him to shore up our depth holes with inexpensive serviceable fringe players and possibly the odd minor trade. Even though i think he has been swinging most of the deals these last few years i think he may sit back now under a new owner and a new realm. Remember now when he makes a move there is no Gainey to meet the press and the Einsteins on L’antichambre. 



  406. TomNickle says:

    So I suppose the question with San Jose is are they willing to gamble that they can get Mason come July 1st.  Because if he re-signs with the Blues, that becomes quite interesting.

    And if he doesn’t sign with the Blues, where do they go?  Ben Bishop?

    Horton may be a good player but De Boer picked his assistants too.  And while Horton is a very good player, De Boer is very much about sending messages.  Dale Tallon is actively shopping him according to various reports.  Either De Boer is on board with that or he’s pissed about it.

  407. GrimJim says:

    You missed one option: After July 1 another team can submit an offer sheet for a restricted free agent. The team with the RFA’s rights then has to either match the offer or receive compensatory draft picks from the team making the offer.

    By the way, after July 1 the RFA’s agent does have the right to negotiate the offer with the other team, so the RFA and his agent does have some limited measure of control in the situation.

    Of course, submitting an offer sheet is the equivalent of audibly farting in the poker room of the old boys’ club… It’s not going to get you kicked out but the other players will make fun of you mercilessly and may even move to another table.

  408. HardHabits says:

    You keep trotting out Pitssburgh as an example of a team that sucks but I’d trade the bunch of them for the Habs. They have way more to trade with and let’s just say they do tank next season. They’ll just be all the better for it.

    MA Fleury needs to start hitting the weights and taking protein. They lost to the Habs because he sucked plain and simple.

    When will you guys just admit that Halak played out of this world and the Habsonly made it as deep as they did because of him. He is the ONLY reason the Habs made it to the ECF. Cammys 13 goals don’t exist if Halak doesn’t make the saves he made.

    Pisstburgh is still a far and away better team then the Habs are and they will be better for many more seasons.

    Take a challenge. Let’s add up the points totals, goals for and goals against for the Pens and the Habs over the course of the next 4 years and add to that each teams future playoff wins.

    I’d bet with anyone here that the Pens outshine the Habs in every category.

  409. HardHabits says:

    If the girl on the left is named cookie then yes both will do.

  410. nightmare_49 says:

     Chris – It sure looks like the King are going to make a splash on the UFA market as you predict. The last two years or so Lombardi has had his hands tied and was not aloud to sign anybody over 4 million unless he had consent of the board and also a strict budget to keep, that has now really changed.

       On July 1st when Lombardi signs a top free agent or two the other GMs out west will panic and start making catch up deals, the domino effect.

  411. Chuck says:

    Blame Boone. He has some heavy s—.

    But that doesn’t change the fact that Jaro has yet to prove his worth as a #1 for a full season… so we don’t really know if he’s up to the task. And because of that, The Habs would be nuts to go high-dollar, long-term on a contract.


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  412. Bill J says:

    Uhm I am not clear on these rules RE RFA – but the way I understood it.

    a RFA CAN be signed by another team.


    IE He is a Free Agent come July 1st.  However compensation is returned to the Habs from the signing team.

    Look it up.

    MANY times has this happened in the leagues history.

    Edit – I don’t know how I missed GrimJim’s post.  But yeah I 100% agree with him, after double checking.


  413. SeriousFan09 says:

    They don’t suck, but they’re not the ideal. They’ve failed utterly to draft well outside of their Top 2 selections and Staal is maybe half the player that Toews and Backstrom, 2006 was a mistake on the level of AK versus Getzlaf and Company. Penguins are a terrible example if you want to make the smart drafting, smart trading argument.

    Hal Gill and Josh Gorges did an excellent job shutting down the oppositon, as did the rest of the defence. Halak put on a fantastic goaltending performance but the team gave him the opportunity to stop a ton of shots by forcing the opposition to hit Halak from the low-percentage areas, much like how Leighton thrived when Flyers shut down the Montreal offence. Cammalleri, Gionta led the way up front and a lot of the team put in the work necessary to take advantage of oppositon mistakes. They played like a team and won because of it. Crosby was shut down, the Pens D was weak and the Habs capitalized on it. They couldn’t beat us with our #1 defencemen out, they blew it. We should feel bad their Superstars couldn’t pull their heads out of their rears?

    Pittsburgh’s existence is defined by luck. They won a lottery that Bettman probably tampered with to save the Penguins and ended up having two of the three most talented players in the world available to them. If they’d drafted in 2000, 2001 with the 2nd and 1st overall, they’d have Heatley and Kovalchuk, a pair of 50-goal scorers but not a defensive bone between them and no established leadership quality. Penguins hit the draft jackpot twice in a row, you really think the Habs will draft two generational players in two straight years if they tank? Please. Penguins got lucky and it saved their pathetic bandwagon franchise again, just like intentionally throwing the 83-84 season brought in the original savior, the incomparable Mario Lemieux.

    The Penguins were exposed for what they are, a 1-trick pony that is based on their centre strength and wingers who can’t cash golden chances when Crosby puts a goal right on their stuck.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  414. Max_a_million says:

    You are right thank you.

    But as you said it is not done. 

  415. Storm Man says:

    Halak never won the Hart.

    Halak never won the Vezina.

    Jose won both in the same year.

    If Halak’s agent is looking for a dime more then 3.5 per year for three years hate to say it Habs have to trade him. You can have Price and a backup for that kind of money.

  416. andrewberkshire says:

    Get rid of our top 2 defense…. for one top 6 forward????

    HH, maybe you didn’t get the memo, but since the lockout the biggest need for nearly every team is an elite puckmoving defenseman. If Markov went on the market, he would have more value than anyone else currently going UFA or anyone on the trade market. We’d be looking at getting back what Anaheim got for Chris Pronger, not one top 6 forward.

  417. HardHabits says:

    Do it!!

  418. WarHero says:

    Compare the career numbers and will not see that much of a difference AND Price is only 22. He WILL be a stud :)



    Never judge another man’s decision poor until you actually have proof of it failing!

  419. rogus says:

    Halak never got busted for using propecia. HAHAHAHA

  420. Chris says:

    The problem with the salary dump trade is that you need a partner with salary cap space. With so many teams cap-strapped and/or hurting financially (there are all those rumours about double digit teams seeing their ownership exploring ways to sell their teams), I’m not sure that all the teams with cap space are looking to spend to the cap.

    I agree that the Ryan Smyth deal opened people’s eyes to the possibility of this type of move. I’m just not convinced that there is a lot of movement possible.

    I agree whole-heartedly with you regarding Gauthier’s likely behaviour. I think he’s going to tweak the team…it is unlikely he will make a serious splash.

  421. andrewberkshire says:

    You also have to consider that Neuvirth plays behind a ridiculous team that’s made up of a ton of career AHLers who lead the league in scoring every year. Basically he’s Antti Niemi, so not very impressive.

  422. Chris says:

    That’s a foregone conclusion.  But will Neuvirth be happy to play second fiddle to Varlamov, or vice versa?  Or would the Capitals be better off packaging one of them off in a deal to pick up even more pieces for that ridiculously stacked team?

    The idea that the Capitals still have more hotshot prospects like John Carlson, Mathieu Perreault, Marcus Johansson and Karl Alzner that have yet to play a full season with the team, as well as the potential of Neuvirth, is just absolutely scary for their Eastern Conference rivals over the next few years.

  423. Chris says:

    Giroux and Aucoin, I grant, fit that mold.  But the rest of the team are not really any more of AHL “ringers” than what the Bulldogs were sporting when they had Corey Locke, Andre Benoit and Mathieu Biron in front of Carey Price in 2006-07.

    Setting AHL records is impressive, regardless of how offensive the team in front of him is.  Back-to-back seasons where his goals against average eclipsed the 2.10 GAA that Price put up in his own miracle playoff run is pretty impressive.

    I’m not saying he will be a superstar.  But he’s definitely proven all he can prove at the AHL level, as he did in the OHL and the ECHL before that.

  424. andrewberkshire says:

    Except Price was 19, not 22. Also I don’t think it follows what you said down below that Neuvirth might not be satisfied playing second fiddle in the NHL to Varlamov. He has no other options. An AHL superstar still has zero bargaining power in the NHL. He should be happy to split time with Varlamov, likely getting 30-35 games next season.

  425. Habsrule1 says:

    You’re going by 1 season…a season in which Price was nakebitten and couldn’t buy a win.

    I’m not 100% on the exact numbers, but I’d say over the past 3 years, their stats are pretty even. I still think Price has better rebound control (although Halak has improved there) and way better puck handling, not to mention he is bigger and stronger. i like Halak, but right this moment, if I had to trade one, it would be Halak because they are not both staying long term, and Halak can fetch a pretty good return now.

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

  426. Storm Man says:

    Captain……. Next your going to say put him in the HHOF. Did you just get a hockey book this year? I look at your posts and think your new to the game of hockey. 

  427. adam76 says:

    You may want to work on your reading comprehension before talking smack.


    reread my post, feel embarrassed and move on.

  428. Storm Man says:

    The only one here who talks alot of smack as you call it is you. It is a little hard doing this from a iphone By the way, I’ve heard of a program for people like you. It’s called effective communication skills. Great pic glad to see Price is your hero.

  429. adam76 says:

    Yes – you poor reading and comprehension skills are due to your “smart” phone.  

  430. Storm Man says:

    I would like to stay here and trade insults, But I would need to find a worthy opponent and your 15 mins are up.

  431. adam76 says:


  432. SeriousFan09 says:

    Price won the Calder Cup with an All-Star performance in the playoffs, than played a very strong season in 07-08, placing himself on the All-Rookie team. He had an impeccable record going into the All-Star break as well. Halak was not this good in 07-08, nor 08-09. He only truly broke out at this level during the 09-10 season and put on an all-world performance at the Olympics and then was heroic in the post-season.

    Jaro was not persecuted, it’s a tired, weak argument.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  433. Mikey_39 says:

    WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT! Halak led in save percentage in the AHL.  The year he brought the bulldogs to the playoffs, he was pushed aside when price came and didn’t get a chance to win the calder cup.  It’s the story of his career.  Even though he’s proven that he is a very talented goaltender, they never gave him a shot.  But price was given EVERY opportunity from the beginning

  434. SeriousFan09 says:

    Pushed aside? He was at the IIHF Worlds as the backup for Slovakia, they called, he answered. Price was dropped in and by the time the IIHF was over he was stellar in nets for Hamilton so it made absolutely no sense to rip a hot goalie out of nets for the other guy.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  435. K-hab25 says:

    Hey stop letting the facts get in the way of a good lie. It’s all the Price haters have to hang there hat on. This BS crap that Price was given everything without earning it. He earned being drafted high with his play in juniors. He earned being on the big club, by winning the Calder cup and the MVP of the tournament. He earned being the #1, by putting up identical #’s at 20 as Huet was at 32. He earned Gainey playing him when he was struggling, by winning 40 of his first 65 starts and making the all-star team at 21. Now Halak before this year accomplished what exactly. Has he won anything at any level, let alone been the MVP twice like Price has, answer NO. Halak never started more than 28 games in any season in the AHL, yet he was supposedly so dominant, that he should’ve been playing in front of the #5 overall pick, that was coming off a year in which he won the WJC tournament and MVP and the Calder cup and MVP. Seriously what kind of idiot would a GM have to be to choose to go with a 9th round pick that had never played more than 28 games in an AHL season, over everything Price had accomplished. This notion that Price was handed everything spawns from 2 places, the Huet fans that still blame Price for Huet being traded and the 2 months Gainey was coach and stuck with Price when he was struggling. Those 2 situations made everyone forget how well he had played and everything he accomplished and made it envogue just to say he was handed everything, which is aload of s**t!!!

  436. K-hab25 says:

    He didn’t even play in half of the dogs games that year, he spent the last 2 months playing in Montreal. He played in 28 games with Hamilton and was 16-11 with a 2.00 GAA .932 SV%, Price played the 22 playoff games and was 15-6 with a 2.06 GAA and a .936 SV% winning the MVP. One did in the regular season and one in the postseason. Which do you think is the more impressive performance?

  437. petrov14 says:

    Huh, looks like your right. Not by design though.

    ______________________________________ Gionta for Captain.

  438. Trisdin says:

    I know a goalie in my beer league who won a 50/50 draw last week. The habs should sign him.

  439. andrewberkshire says:

    Rob, all due respect but Brian Burke obliterated the Flames on the Phaneuf deal. Sutter sold Phaneuf at his lowest possible value, and he has a higher cap hit than Markov. As for playoff success, Chara doesn’t have any to speak of either. Pronger is 35, Markov is 31. It’s unlikely that another team would give up as much as the Flyers did for Pronger, but that’s FAR more likely than what people are proposing on here, Markov straight up for a top 6 forward. A puck moving, elite defenseman who can carry a team on his back is the #1 commodity in the NHL, bar none. It’s why is Drew Doughty and Stamkos were both up for trades, Doughty would garner way bigger offers. The bottom line is that a single defenseman can make more of an impact on a game than a single forward, and elite defensemen are far more rare than elite forwards.

  440. SeriousFan09 says:

    That occured a couple weeks ago at least.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  441. JF says:

    Gauthier’s priority has to be to re-sign Plekanec at about $4-$4.5 million.  I doubt we could replace him with anyone capable of doing all the things he did.  I forget how many games he made the difference in by scoring or setting up the winning goal, not to mention his excellent work on the penalty kill.  He’s also quite durable.  It’s true his contribution dropped off in the playoffs, specifically against Philly; he was very good against Washington and excellent in a defensive role against Pittsburgh; but this drop-off may have had something to do with the fact that AK46 was pretty much a dead weight most of the time.

    But I fear Plekanec will be leaving.  He should have been re-signed during the season, but the closer we get to free agency, the more likely it is that he’ll decide to test it, and I’m sure there’ll be teams out there willing to offer him more than $5 million.  So Gauthier will have to address the hole his departure will leave dy dealing some of our assets.  Trade one of the goaltenders, Halak for preference.  It’s unlikely he’ll be able to repeat what he did this year or be brilliant on a consistent enough basis.  He was other-worldly against Washington and Pittsburgh, but ordinary against Philly and, in my opinion, less than that in the last few games of the season, when we were desperate to lock up a playoff spot.  I’d try and package him with one or both of the Kostitsyns and/or Hamrlik to a western team, perhaps St. Louis, who might be looking for someone younger than Chris Mason.  I’d try to avoid trading within the Conference unless the return were very substantial.

    Even if Plekanec returns, we’d still need a big, scoring winger (David Backes or Patrick Sharp come to mind), and a stay-at-home defenseman with a good point shot.  Volchenkov would be nice, but almost certainly out of our price range.  Johnny Boychuk would be a cheap option in the unlikely event of the Bruins not re-signing him, or maybe Michalek.

    Resign Pouliot for about what he was making last year, and hope that the problem late in the season and in the playoffs was conditioning and that he’ll address it over the summer.  Re-sign Moore, Pyatt, and Lapierre.  Let Metro and Bergeron go, also Paul Mara unless we have no other option, in which case I’d give him another shot; he was injured most of the season, and he said he’d give anything to play for the team next year – the right attitude.

    If Hamrlik is untradeable, I’d consider burying his contract in Hamilton.


  442. pierre lapuck says:

    I’m sure to be flameds but I think our most rteradeable asset is Markov.  Packaged with a goalie (Halak is my choice to go) and one or both of the Tits bros. a package like that could bring a centreman with size and grit, a right handed shooting Dman, and one or two fillers.  I’m no capologist, in fact my wife would say I have no $ sense at all, but Markov’s huge salary combined with his what 40 gms a  year is a crappy investment no matter how good he is in between injuries.  Also get some Canadians with grit who are prepared to play past 82 games.  Pleks is a nice player but not wirth 5 mil.  See ya.

  443. SeriousFan09 says:

    Markov missed 24 games in the first four years post lock-out when he essentially became the MVP of the Canadiens, most of those games were missed in the 05-06 season as well. This year, he had a terrible accident with the skate incident and had a bad fall when checked and had an ACL injury. He has had successful surgery and is a quick healer with a strong commitment to physical conditioning, he will be back next season in strong form.

    Check your facts before you spout an opinion about one of the best defencmen in the NHL and a guy who’s carried the team on his back for half a decade.



    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  444. pierre lapuck says:

    Check your facts before you spout an opinion about one of the best defencmen in the NHL and a guy who’s carried the team on his back for half a decade.


    Carried them where exactly?  I agree he’s a great defenceman but not a leader and not the Moses who’s going to lead us to the promised land. 

  445. HardHabits says:

    What worries me is that Markov seems to have picked up the injury bug.

  446. ooder says:

    hey if Markov’s name didn’t end in “ov” would you still be so adamant about trading him 


    “I like what I’m seeing right now,” assessed Markov. “We’re not perfect, but we’re trying to be.”

  447. pierre lapuck says:

    If it’s the trade route we go on to develop a more complete team then we have to give to get.  Markov and a goalie are our most tradeable so it at least needs to be considered.  Remember it was the Habs who traded HOF Dickie Moore to get Guy’s rights so why not trade Markov for an equivalent valued player who is NOT a defencemen.  We can’t score consitently 5 on 5 and for that as others have posted we need a centreman who can mix it up along the boards and in front of the net.  I beleive that Markov is the quickest route to that guy, it’s just my opinion and the Habs I’m quite sure couldn’t care less what I think.  Neither should anyone else.

  448. pierre lapuck says:


  449. GrimJim says:

    And Scott Cullen weighs in on where the HAbs stand this summer

  450. says:

    hehe, no just you.

    They Call Me Shane

  451. ooder says:

    why exactly?

    are the habs restricted to only having one defensemen who can start any offence?


    “I like what I’m seeing right now,” assessed Markov. “We’re not perfect, but we’re trying to be.”

  452. SeriousFan09 says:

    How do you propose we get the puck out of our own end to this big centre and control the PP if we don’t have Markov then? Elite PP quarterback who can turn in 25 minutes a night and play in all situations, Markov is irreplaceable to the team as it is stands, should we drop the responsibility on a rookie who hasn’t even played 20 NHL games yet? That sounds like a great idea to make a trainwreck of Subban’s career as we make him take on the job of a 9-year NHL veteran.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  453. SeriousFan09 says:

    Since when? A freak accident and a bad check and he’s Rick Dipietro?

    First time he’s played under 65 games since the lockout ended, injury bug my rear end. You like the idea of Markov going so the team can bottom out and you can fulfill your fantasy that the Canadiens will draft a Toews and a Doughty in two successive drafts…


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  454. Bill J says:

    2 things – and they may come across as brutal to you judging by your signature.

    1) Markov & Koivu did indeed carry this team on their back’s – but to what exactly ?  It IS a fair question.

    2) Not trading Koivu when he had some value and the team could have gotten some youthful talent in return – FAIL.  If the same happens with Markov, EPIC FAIL.

    Markov & Jaro have the highest value, and IMO are expendable, IF and ONLY IF mind you – the Habs finally get that BIG Rugged Center they have so clearly needed for the past 15 years now.


  455. SeriousFan09 says:

    Apparently yes, it’s a good idea to take Markov’s job and drop it on Subban’s head, I’m sure he’ll take off without any issues.

    Markov has kept this team from falling apart every year he’s played, taking on the hard minutes, lifting 2nd-rate defencemen to elite status by playing next to him, maintaining a deadly PP that keeps the team alive each season since he’s the only truly capable puck-moving defencemen on the team. He can’t do it alone all year though, the magnificent Nicklas Lidstrom has always had plenty of help in DET. That’s why keeping Markov while developing Subban is essential.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  456. adamkennelly says:

    sign Moore, sign UFAs Zenon Kenopka and John Scott.  let everyone else, including Pleky walk.  not because I dont like the guy but because its gonna cost you close to 5M for 5 years including a no trade likely and that is just too much for him.

    trade Halak, AK, SK and whatever picks or prospects you need to to get top 6 F with size and some “proven” secondary – 2 way – checker, grinder types like Jared Boll, Brandon Prust, David Clarkson who can score some goals but more importantly make this team harder to play against and create space for our skilled guys. 

    what this team needs more than “goaltending” is freakin goal SCORING – cannot afford to sit on one of our “assets”.  Price has way more upside and I believe he will have a better, longer NHL career – think about all those games where team lost cause we couldnt score – those turn into Wins and build confidence.  Halak’s value could not be higher but every GM in the league would still give you more for Price – what does that tell you.


  457. ooder says:

    but wait… he doesn’t play with heart or decapitate people… we don’t need players like that

    I mean, Subban will jut play 30 minutes a game and run both waves of the power play no problem.


    “I like what I’m seeing right now,” assessed Markov. “We’re not perfect, but we’re trying to be.”

  458. SeriousFan09 says:

    What have the two of them had to work with? Koivu lost near his entire prime playing career playing next to nobodies because the team was crap from the day he arrived except for a few brief moments of overachievement in his later years here from his fellow squadmates. Markov’s had to take on the responsibility of being the only Top defencemen on the team, carrying a 2nd-rate defensive partner every year and handling every hard job the team asks of him. he carries the offence from our own end, manages an excellent PP unit that keeps this team alive year after year and never complains, ever.



    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  459. Puck Bard says:

    Guys? Seriously… it’s hard for me to feel passionate about any player when their loyalty expectancy is about 3.5 years. Team loyalty? Sure. But gone are the days of the franchise player. How can any of you feel so strongly about any of these guys. The teams been turfed like sod about six years running. Whatever puzzle combination works, let it be so and let’s move on. 

  460. nightmare_49 says:

       Mathieu Darche endorses Bolt’s Boucher / Lightning Strikes

       Mathieu Darche says Tampa Bay Lightning coach Guy Boucher is “too good to be true”

       Darche said the best example was Boucher’s handling of a game right before a five-day Christmas break. Darche said because players were coming off injuries and because the parent-club Canadiens returned several players, Hamilton’s roster was so cluttered it was scratching four players a night .

       Darche had three goals, including the winner, an assist and six shots in the 5-4 overtime victory over Rochester.

       “And for that game, the players of the game were the four guys who were in the stands,” Darche said. “They had an outstanding attitude all week. They were the first guys to cheer when you got off the ice. They got the player of the game just for their contributions for team spirit. It made guys feel good about themselves.”

  461. rogus says:

    This post makes more sense than any I’ve read here today. Good Job.

  462. andrewberkshire says:

    For those suggesting we trade Markov, saying Markov for a top 6 forward back is a ridiculous notion. If the team is going to trade Markov, which I highly doubt, we’ll be getting massive return for him. For example last season Chris Pronger was dealt at the draft. Markov is younger than Pronger so in a trade where he’s about to sign a new contract he has considerably more value. We’d be looking at a return of 1 top six forward, 1 highly touted prospect, 2 1st round picks and a conditional pick. That’s what a player the calibre of Markov is worth. The constant undervaluing of our players on this board is plain stupid.

  463. TripleX says:

    And when Price lets in that inevitable bad goal and the crowd and city is out for blood?  No player deserves or can be expected to perform under that kind of pressure.  Think about how Halak is revered in Montreal and then consider what would happen if he is traded and Price made the starter.

    ps every GM would give more for Price?  LINKS or verification as I have never heard that one


    “Good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgement.”

  464. gumper says:

    That’s one butt-ugly lookin’ top six.

  465. Big Ted says:

    It is fairly clear we have too much money invested in the players we already have signed to make much of a splash with the money we have left. Cammalleri and Gionta justified their contracts this year, but if you look at Gomez, Markov, Hamrlik, and Spacek, that’s $22 million locked up for guys who are arguably all past their prime (for Gomez and Markov, that prime may have been recent but it’s up to them to show they have good years left). Throw in the salary for AK46 and that’s a lot of money that’s not offering the return you’d hope for what we’re paying.

    The first goal then would be to unload the talent we have that is not living up to the money we’re paying for it, although to do that, it would mean throwing in something of some value or upside (Price, Halak, SK74, whatever else…). If you look at the five possibilities I mentioned above, I don’t see anyone reaching out for Gomez at 7.3 million nor Hamrlik at 5.5 million unless it’s Hamr at the trade deadline (given he becomes a UFA after next year). Spacek is also a bit of a push. So that leaves AK or Markov as trade bait to unload salary. Not saying we should do it but realistically, ditching one of those guys is the only way we fit Pleks and our two goalies in or sign a UFA without making other moves to free up cash. As far as Markov’s value goes, he is a top-tier defenceman but he is also coming off a couple of key injuries so unless he comes back and proves his worth (and by then it’ll be December-January) we’re not going to get the return we want (ie we’d be selling low). So to trade him to sign Pleks would mean we don’t get much in return comapred to what we could get if we wait. To compare him to Pronger, as some of you have done, yes he is younger with a better offensive upside, but Pronger’s game hasn’t dropped off that much with age, he plays big minutes, he is bigger, and he has been a winner. I don’t know that among GM’s, Markov stands out above Pronger unless he comes back in top form. If we were to trade him, I think we’re looking at a top 6 forward and a draft pick kind of return. For example, a Jeff Carter calibre player, unless it’s a multi-player deal. Given we have PK coming up and Markov is a question, getting a player like Carter for Markov would not be out of the question to me. But realistically, I think it make sthe most sense to look for a taker for AK46, a big guy who can score and has upside teams might like. SK74 also has upside and clearly has to be dealt and I think there would be takers for the two of them. That clears up cap space to give Pleks 4.5 and re-sign halak and price. Giving Pleks more than that is a bit much and 5 is way over what we can afford. After that, I think we re-sign Moore, Darche, Lapierre, Pouliot, Pyatt and bring up White and either Trotter or Desharnais. Pacioretty may need more time in the minors (big shame that Boucher isn’t there for him any more). Mara, Metro, MAB, etc. are all not worth offer in my opinion. From there, the habs will still need to wheel and deal a bit to make the team as competitive as last year, but let’s see what happens at the draft first.

  466. pierre lapuck says:

    I don’t recall mentioning that I’d trade Markov’s minutes for Subban’s.  What we all realize is even if we keep Markov which I agree is the most likely scenario, is that SOMEBODY has to take his minutes for the first 3 months of the season anyway..  They may need to go get that guy.  Whoever the hell he is.  I was only thinking of trading him as a business investment; he is a premier player who would command a premier player at least in return, his salary is tradeable, and although he is an integral cog in the machine , the machine went three deeep into the playoffs and he was out after the first round.  Nobody is irreplaceable.  That’s all I’m saying.  Sheesh!

  467. MCZ4LIFE says:

    Gauthier should deffinitly draft dylan mcllrath for there first pick

  468. SeriousFan09 says:

    We also struggled at critical times the first round because he wasn’t there, no PP effectivness in the 3rd round against the Flyers cost the team badly. We can move him for a premiere player of course, but I don’t see the gain from the move ATM. Markov as he is, fits in with the team, the coach and we know what we have.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  469. HardHabits says:

    You seem to be forgetting Grabovski’s hit on Markov last year. That’s a lot of missed games at the most inopportune times.

  470. Rob says:

    man…if you can convince another team’s GM of your argument we will be in seriously good shape.  I can’t say i agree that our players are undervalued on this site as a rule of thumb.  I think, just as frequently, they are OVERvalued, much like you have done.  There is no WAY Markov fetches that much in return.  Just like there is no WAY Price or Halak fetches us Jeff Carter straight up in return.  Markov is an excellent defenceman, but is he in the same league as Pronger, Lidstrom, Keith, Chara, etc? i don’t think so.  Especially given his injury issues and his lack of proven playoff success.  If anything, i think for MArkov you’re looking more at the type of return the Flames got for Dion Phaneuff.  I don’t count any one of those players the Flames received as matching the return that you outlined. 

    Anyway, i guess i’m saying, i disagree with your assessment.  But i sure do HOPE that you’re smarter than i am!

  471. Dethroner says:
    Big habs fan from newfoundland here….I have alot of thought and ideas for the habs this season. The two biggest issues the canadians have are not pleks, or the goalies, they are the SALARY CAP(granted, that which is causing the problems with pleks and the goalies), and the other problem they have is with size.
    • I thought alot about how well PK played, and how he is totally capable of handling top line minutes, so that could make markov a candidate for cap relief(and to help bring in a bobby ryan type player). however, the longer i thought about it, i realised it wasnt worth it. While pk did awesome, and he is really mature, he is stil really young, especially for a defenceman, and it would do wonders to have a year where he could watch and learn from markov. depending on how many injuries we have and our spot on the standings, and how much we could sign markov to an extension for, i would either keep him for the playoffs, or trade him at the deadline for some picks. FINAL THOUGHT: keep markov
    • While hamrliks contract is big, he was really good for us this season and playoffs. it would be hard to get rid of him, considering the contract, but also hard to replace him. he is a steadying force on this team. I say we keep him. the only way i would trade him is if we were able to trade him to edmonton for dustin penner(even though edmonton would never make that trade). i would love to see him off an underachieving team and on the habs. another thing about hammerlik, this is his final year. he may sign after this year for say a two year contract at 2.5 or 3 mil a season….FINAL THOUGHT: keep hammer unless you can free some cap space. I would like to package the kostitsyns for another underachieving package of similar value. kinda like the pouliot/latendresse trade. you never know, whatever we get back could end up doing really well…
    • the kostitsyns could sure use a change of scenery. perhaps you could package them with hammer to send to edmonton? FINAL THOUGHT: if you can pawn off the kostitsyns for some other underachieving talent you can either burry in the minors, or perhaps help you now, do it.
    • pleks: because of the amount of forwards we have signed, and the ammount of money we’re spending on them for the next 5 years, we cant afford another $5 contract. I highly doubt pleks will be on the canadians next year, and unless gauthier can sign him for say 4.25 a season for 2 years, then he’d be a fool. FINAL THOUGHT: let him walk unless he takes a home town discount
    • now, for the goalie controversy. first up, i am a fan of both goalies. i believe that price will mature, but the only way he does, is if he gets the chance to proove himself, like he did when he stole the spotlight from huet. some say he needs a low-pressure city like tampa to blossom. i say he needs less pressure in general, to get his confidence back. halak has a really greedy agent, and will no doubt go to arbitration. i believe halak has had one of his career years this year and his value has never been higher. another factor here is the market. there are several goalies availible and few teams looking for a goalie. here is what i propose: sign price to a 2-or-3-year 800k-1mil contract. sign dan ellis if at all possible for around 1.5-2 mil. for 2-3 years. failing dan ellis, sign nittymaki or biron or turco or someone to a 1 year 1 mil(or around there) contract. then trade away halaks’ rights, or let him be taken on an offer sheet and be happy with the picks. now, i dont think tampa has as much interest in halak if the reports can be trusted, however, if you could trade halak and a prospect for tampas first round pick, do it. actually, if there was any way to get a pick around where tampa is sitting, do it, and draft neidderreiter. FINAL THOUGHT: a good year to look for a goalie. sign an underrated veteran for cheap, re-sign price, trade halaks rights or let him walk on an offer sheet.
    • on the topic of dominic moore, for the love of god, keep him. sign him to a two way, three year deal at say 2 – 2.5 mil. he has been a bit of a douche when it has come to contracts in the past and has seemed a bit self-important, however, he is a bit older now, and i think he really enjoyed his time on the habs…he knows he wont get much more than that anywhere else and his style of hockey is a perfect fit for the habs.
    • laraque: buy out seems to be the only real option. too bad.
    • metro: let him walk. as much as i love metro, we have too many gifted small forwards. we need size on the front end.
    • lapierre is due for a small raise, but he will take the hometown discount. 3 years at 1 mil/season.
    • pouliot sign for same as before, 800k, 2 way contract. 2 years.
    • tom pyatt, sign for league minimum, 2 way, 2 years.
    • darche, same, league minimum, 2 way, 2 years.
    • ma bergeron: i am totally split in what i would do here. part of me wants him back, but he is sooo small. i love him on the pp, and he is versatile…i’d like to sign him for league minimum, 2-way contract.
    • let mara walk.
    after all that the (unfinished)lineup looks like this:
    gionta(5) gomez(8) cammalleri(5)
    pouliot(800k)  moore(2) moen(1.5)
    maxwell(735k) lapierre(1) pyatt(500k)
    darche(500k) white(635k) pacioretty(875k)
    markov(5.75) subban(875k)
    gorges(1.3) spacek(3.833)
    hammer(5.5) gill(2.25)
    ellis(2) price(1)
    laraques 1mil still on the books
    that totals 51.5…the cap is expected to go up to 58…so that’s 6.5 million to plug the hole left in pleks place. why not go after lombardi for say 2 mil for 2 seasons? and what about craig conroy? i know hes getting older and last year wasnt his greatest year, but he was captain in calgary for years…and calgary last year was cancer. or what about going after robert lang again? anyways, with our first round pick i would go after kabanov if he is still there. if we manage to get tampas pick for halak somehow, or if we’re able to move further up in the draft, then go for neiderreiter. he will have a hell of a year next year. another thing, i say we go after bertuzzi. we could really use an in front of the net pressence, and we could use a natural right winger, seeing as we only have two. or colby armstrong even. satan? also, it would be nice to leave a few mil in cap space just in case we do really good next year and want to trade some picks or whatever to get some trade deadline help.
    so, dont know what you guys think about this but…basically, we need some size up front, and we need as much cap friendliness as possible for this year specifically. I would like to keep the core together while waiting to see how some of the inexpensive youth do in the first 15-20 games of the season go by. we need to sign/trade for someone as a second center. same for someone who can be a real in front of the net pressence/threat. the most important thing that players need to have getting signed on this team are a) size, b) be defensively responsible, c) have lots of speed, and d) have a positive mental attitude. the habs made it as far as they did by-and-large in due to the fact that they have such a strong positive attitude. i know now why gainey brought in gomez…not just for cammalleri and gionta, but to help instill a strong positive mental attitude in the dressing room. that why kostitsyn needs to go. he hasnt bought into that, so cut him loose for a contract you can bury, if nothing else.
    one other thing…i say give engqvist and klubertanz a good chance to make the team this year. if they have a preseason that is on par with some two-way contracts like darche and o’byrne, then give em a chance to start the season with the habs and get them some playing time in the big leagues now, even if it’s not for the whole year. If i were PG i would only plug holes with cheap two-way contracts so I could switch them with other minor league players easily and avoid more cap issues. also, having a player like darche around who will go back and forth between the big leagues and the minors is invaluable. leadership for the hamilton, and a valuable role player in montreal when injuries occur or to fill in for a player that is in dire need of a few weeks’ conditioning.
  472. HardHabits says:

    Nice. You support tanking too, because with that line-up its draft lottery time baby!!!

  473. Dethroner says:

    i said it was an incomplete lineup…just working from what we already have, minus the ellis signing.

    what it should have looked like, if you had finished reading the article, is something like this:

    gionta(5) gomez(8) cammalleri(5)
    pouliot(800k) lombardi(2.5)  bertuzzi(2)
    moen(1.5) moore(2) lapierre(1) 
    darche(500k) white(635k) pacioretty(875k)
    markov(5.75) subban(875k)
    gorges(1.3) spacek(3.833)
    hammer(5.5) gill(2.25)
    ellis(2) price(1)

  474. Bill says:

    I still don’t get the Phaneuf deal. Before it happened, if someone on a Leaf fan board had floated the actual deal it would have been ridiculed as extreme wishful thinking. Burke pulled off a heist of Biblical proportion in what will go down as his career-defining trade as Leafs’ GM, I mean, you don’t have to be Pierre McGuire to appreciate Phaneuf’s monstrosity.

    Still, you have to think that it says something about the trade value of elite defensemen in the NHL today, and unless the trade was made without any shopping at all, it does suggest that Markov’s trade value is less than you peg it at. Ended that sentence with a preposition, but the point stands.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

  475. SeriousFan09 says:

    It was a hit from behind, it was dirty and it would have sidelined plenty of other NHL players, the knee is a very dangerous thing to injure because of the involvement in how a player moves and players have to be very careful about rehabilitating them.

    It’s a bad 13-month window, in the 3 previous seasons, he barely missed a game, he had a bad year. You shelve players over bad years, Teemu Selanne might have been finished after the lockout.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  476. SherbrookeW says:

    Habs Since ’68


      The idea that what the Habs need is “size”and “toughness”  and that they should achieve this by trading skilled younger players for old mean ones is so insane that it makes me wonder if the people who propose it have ever watched a hockey game or followed the history of an organization.  What wins Stanley Cups are highly skilled and above all highly speedy players; fast teams that score a lot of goals win Stanely Cups (vintage Montreal, Pittsburgh, vintage Edmonton, on and on) Sometimes a slower defensive team can win if they have a.) a great goaltender , and b.)surprisingly opportunistic scoring. New Jersey is cases a through z here.  But no team — no team — wins Cups with big tough sandpapery gritty Western boys. Doesn’t happen. Never will. I mean, actually look at the history of the Montreal Canadiens.  Please.

      What hurt the Habs against Philadelphia was , strictly, the absence of secondary scoring.  Had Pleks, AK, and Pouliot played anywhere near their best, they could have won. (Alternately, if you moved that tough gritty French-Canadian line from the Flyers to the team that ought to have had them — you know, huge Giroux, gritty Briere — then the Habs would have won that way,too.)  So what the Habs need to do is….increase their secondary scoring!  And they do this either by a.)  developing the young talent they have and giving it  a chance to shine or by b.)  trading old parts for new.   B. is very hard in this league right now, so you have to count on a.  But moving AK , or even SK, much less Markov (! a puck-moving defenseman who plays well in his own zone, the rarest thing in hockey!) for some tough Canadian kids is , well, insane.

  477. andrewberkshire says:

    Keep in mind that Phaneuf had fewer points in 81 games last year than Markov had in 45. He had a disasterous season, and he had a bad one the year before that as well. Look at the Chris Pronger trade to see what an elite defenseman is worth when a Sutter isn’t getting screwed.

    Phaneuf is vastly overrated, but that trade as well as the Giguere trade were heists by Burke. Even if Giguere never wins another NHL game, he got rid of Blake’s salary and Toskala in one fell swoop, while acquiring a former Conn Smythe winner. I don’t like Brian Burke as a person, and I think he regularly gets way too much credit as a GM, but those were excellent moves for the Leafs.

  478. nHL80 says:

    Hamrlik for Wayne Simmonds of LA KINGs.  21 yrs old, rookie season,
    +22, 40 pts, 6’2″, a little on the light side, but he’s only 21 and can
    bulk up over time.  I don’t think Hamrlik would say no to playing in
    sunny LA, especially since it’s a blossoming playoff destined team. 
    That’s a cap saving of about $4.5 M, let Mara walk, and voila, we can
    afford Plekanec!  Pair PK with Markov, Gorges with Gill, and Spacek
    with O’Byrne.  I wouldn’t mind having another look at Alex Henry on D
    as the 7th; he’s big, strong and is willing to drop the gloves.  Plus
    he can play as a gritty forward come playoff time.


    trade Sergei to any taker—at his best potential, he’s Koivu, and he’s
    as inconsistent as Kovalev.  I’d look into signing Manny Malhotra at
    $1mil per for 2 seasons. Put him on the 4th line with Darche and Pyatt,
    let Metro walk.  I’d give Pacioretty one last shot on the 3rd line with
    Lapierre and Moore.  As for AK, he’s in a contract year, with his
    brother gone, the book closed,  he has a shot of getting his head
    straight and playing good hockey.


    If Pouliot can put
    up consistent numbers throughout the season and boost up his value, I’d
    consider trading him for a high impact playoff performer.  I think
    Latendresse would have played better in the Flyers series.

    Habs have made the playoffs 5 of the last 6 seasons.  I’m pretty sure
    they’ll make it again.  What they need are the missing pieces that made
    them unsuccessful vs a physical and skilled team like the Flyers and
    retain what gave them success vs. strong teams like the Penguins and

    Retain both goalies, expect a raise to 2 million for Halak.

  479. ari says:

    moore with bertuzzi ,interesting!!!

    i like bertuzzi a lot more

  480. HardHabits says:

    I thought the same thing. No way to Bertuzzi though.

  481. andrewberkshire says:

    Halak will be going to arbitration, he’ll be looking for over 5 million.

  482. nHL80 says:

    ok forget everything i wrote lol

  483. Dethroner says:

    why would la trade simmonds, who is cheap as hell, and has tremendous upside, for a way overpriced, slowing down hammer? that is a ridiculous trade. GMs dont usually accept payment of bags of crap when they give you bags of gold. they have their own cap issues with management trying to sign kovalchuk. guaranteed they wont be giving up any of their youth this off season. not for over expensive contracts anyways…

  484. ari says:

    why not?he is good for detroit but not here?although he never played like his vancouver days

  485. kempie says:

    Shouldn’t have to point this out again but it’s because he broke the neck of his proposed linemate.

  486. ari says:

    that exactly what we need here,big,mean top 6 forward

  487. ooder says:

    we need a criminal?


    “I like what I’m seeing right now,” assessed Markov. “We’re not perfect, but we’re trying to be.”

  488. jordo says:

    That was his brother, Steve.

  489. ari says:

    criminal,come on .shit happened long time ago,it was more accident,he wanted to kick his ass ,but not to break his neck.he could be our scott hartnell

  490. ari says:

    the stars is for other version of stool

  491. Dethroner says:

    i totally forgot about that connection, but it wasnt dominic moore, it was his brother steve. so yeah, keep dominic moore and dont sign bertuzzi…but bertuzzi was interchangeable with several other players. what about colby armstrong? or arktyukin? satan? aaron asham? bochenski? parrish?


    love to see artyukin on a line with gomez and gionta.

  492. Chorske says:

    Again, huge loss for us. Wish it could have been avoided.

  493. arya13 says:
    I was GM: Spezza for Gomez. Swap 1st round picks to move up to 16th.
    Grab 6’5″, 24pt, +20, 169 PM WHL dman, Dylan McIlrath. Sign Pleks for
    less than 4.5M. Try to keep Halak at less than $4M, Price at less than
    $3.5M, otherwise ship one out. Ship out Hamrlik for some prospects, bring
    up Subban/Carle. Have about 5M to fill the roster with a solid 2nd liner
    or some great 3rd/4th liners….Contend!
  494. mbplekfan says:

    You identified the symptom but not the cause. The habs lacked secondary scoring because the big Philly defence prevented our small, speedy forwards from getting close enough to score any goals.

    Without a big center and some physical wingers to drive the net we had nothing but popguns shooting from the outside.

    We have no offensive zone cycling that wears defences down and maintains puck posession. Our offense ran in to the zone popped off a shot and ran back out. No sustained pressure.

    We have the scoring. They just cant score without the support of bigger linemates.

    Gionta, Cammaleri, and AK all have great skills. They didnt have the supporting cast needed to succeed versus a big, tough defence. One big center and a physical winger would make all the difference. We dont need more small playmakers or shooters we need some big physical forwards who can control the puck in the offensive zone.

  495. Clay4bc says:

    (LOL) [Keep]…Price…at…less… than…3.5mil…(LOL)

    Sorry, I was laughing so hard at that  statement that I had to take breaks typing.

    What has he done to even earn a little raise? He will not even be offered close to $3.5 mil.I think we should offer him $1 mil, and he should be happy he has a job in this league.


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

  496. Slovak says:

    What if Halak

    is only at the starting point of his great career and he will be even better next year and next year and next year??? According to facts – his overall performances, his long time performance curve, his ability to come back from horrible game, his ability to focus under hell pressure, his skills, his potential, his ability to work hard on his weaknesses – so according to these PROVEN FACTS – the scenario that he will be even better next season and his price will be even higher IS MUCH MORE PRESUMABLE – than the other way around – that he is just one time wonder and will go only down.

    None of the previous “short time wonder goaltenders” have all the abilities that Halak has namely the most important 2 – ability to stay calm and focused under any conditions and ability to come back from bad time games – these are signs of superstar goaltender – because “HEAD” is the difference – you can have skills and potential, when your “Head” will not allow them to show – and you all know this from everyday life situations…

    You can trade Halak but there is bigger chance that HABS will be standing in situation looking for great goaltender after next seasson because Price is just a hope and even in his best year he was not able to deal with the pressure in playoff and suddenly he looked like a rookie, which he still is – HE IS NOT A N.1 GOALIE AT THIS TIME – yes maybe he will develop to this possition. But he will be still missing the mental power that Halak has. And also he will never be as quick as Halak because of his big body. Yeas he covers bigger part of nets but when skilled forward knows where to shoot he need quick reflexes – and here Halak is quicker.

    But maybe Price will be superstar – maybe he will – maybe and maybe I can develop and become superstar goalie or you can or…

    Who wants to be a superstar goalie?

  497. Clay4bc says:

    Yeah, especially the part about trading our best goalie (Halak), and jkeeping the one who is average at beat (Price)…

    In which universe does that make sense?


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


  498. The Cat says:

    That is absolutely correct about Halak. When you look at his past and what he has done and overcome to get to the NHL; theres no reason that he wont continue to progress. Its all about his work ethic. So when people say Halak had his best year and will go downwards from now on I have to disagree.

  499. The Cat says:

    Id trade Price and Markov…I bet that’d get us something top notch that we need badly. Price will be good and I know hes younger but you cant go wrong with the work ethic Halak has either. Thats why Id keep Halak…for the message it sends: work hard and you have your chance, and not just the promise you bring.

  500. G-Man says:

    Price will make $825K +10% (approx). He didn’t set the world on fire last season, did he, so he’s an under 1mil cap hit.

  501. G-Man says:

    Well thought out, excepting the throwing Halak away part. Throw Price away instead. We have a top 5 goalie already but no one realizes it.

  502. G-Man says:

    Toronto getting Phaneuf is a major gaffe. Naming him captain is hysterical. Calgary, ridding themselves of his poor defensive play. Phaneuf has a good point shot? So, he MAB that can hit once in a while.

  503. Chris says:

    What did Tomas Plekanec do in 2008-09 (80 GP, 20 G, 39 PTS, -9) to see him earn a hefty raise in 2009-10?

    His salary went from $1.8 M in that horrific 2008-09 season to $2.75 M in his excellent 2009-10 season.

    And he was also a restricted free agent. Someday, people will figure out that the NHL salary structure doesn’t necessarily follow logic.

  504. adamkennelly says:

    anything you ever hear (CBC, TSN, NHIC Radio) or read from people in the know say even after the playoff performance – Price gets you more.  Only reason a GM would take Halak is for the small short term upside and lower asking price (no pun intended)…come on people – Halak had a fantastic playoff but unless Rejean House and  Mike Milbury get back into the GM ranks – no one is concluding that this is the level he will play at going forward.  Anyone think some of these GMs are gonna be a little weary after the Tim Thomas contracct.

  505. Clay4bc says:

    Well Chris, of course you speak the truth…but you can’t seriously believe that a goalie who lost 2 out of every 3 games played last season will merit anywhere close to $3.5 mil…I really think he will get $1 mil. Where do you see his salary at?


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


  506. goinforstanley says:

    Resign Halak and Price trade Price.Let Plecs and the rest of the ufas go exept Moore.Sign Kovalchuk to a long term deal.Make a couple of trades (the Kostitsyns) and Go Habs Go.

  507. goinforstanley says:

    And get a big scoring centerman via trade

  508. kempie says:

    Okay, so after careful consideration, here’s what I’d like to see happen: Offer Plex 18M for 4 years. If he doesn’t like it, wish him luck. If he walks, go after Marleau. He’s not my first choice but there aren’t too many options this year and he’d work. Trade Hammr for picks and get him off the books – shouldn’t be that hard. Then try this: Moore = 1.5 – 1.75, Lapps = 1M, Pouls = .850, Pyatt = .850, Darche = .850. Gone = SK, Metro, Mara, MAB. Hopefully, Bowman would jump all over our offer of Halak for Sharp straight up and we offer Price 1.25 and Desjardins .850. That should put us at about 56M.

    Pouliot – Gomez – Gionta

    Cammy – Marleau – Sharp

    Moen – Moore – AK

    Pacioretty – Lapps – Pyatt

    Markov – OB

    Spacek – PK

    Gill – Georges

    Price – Desjardins

    Darche + a “spare part” F and D that we sign < 1M each.

    I think that would be a pretty good place to start. Try and get AK going before the new year (the guy should start training camp in July) and see what you can get for him. Wow, that was easy. This is, of course, relying on the assumption that guys like Bowman, Marleau, Moore don’t give me any backtalk.

  509. salshabs says:

    Agreed, sucks to lose Boucher.  I still think that a team that develops a coach like Boucher, should receive something in return, from the team that poaches him…lets face it, a coach with his credentials doesn’t come along very often.  Montreal hand picked the guy and he should have been the future coach of the habs, now he is tampa’s future, and for what…nothing!

  510. Chris says:

    I’m guessing he will get a deal exceeding the 2-year, $2.5 million deal that Tuukka Rask signed at the beginning of this past season.

    Price has a lot more NHL experience than Rask did when Rask signed that deal. On Nov.6, 2010, Rask’s extension was announced and he had a career record of 9 GP, 5-2-2, 2.43 GAA, 0.917 SV% and 2 SO. Rask had never played in the playoffs in his career.

    On the other hand, Rask’s draftmate Price has a career record entering negotiations of 134 GP, 60-48-18, 2.73 GAA, 0.912 SV% and 4 SO. He was also the starting goaltender in the playoffs in both of his first two seasons in the NHL. I’m guessing that a 2-year deal worth $3-4 million is probably a reasonable guesstimate for Carey Price, potentially with some bonus incentives (such as playing time or playoff games).

    By the way, what a terrible stroke of luck for Rask…he would be cashing in huge if he hadn’t signed an extension at the beginning of the year, but how was he to know he would supplant the reigning Vezina Trophy winner, recently to a 5-year monster deal of his own, so soon?

  511. darkknight says:

    I have been thinking of the many offseason choices the Habs will have to make. First of all, we have to resolve our goaltending woes between rising star Jaroslav Halak who guided the Slovak hockey team to 4th place in the Olympics, and an inconstitent Carey Price. Both are eligible to become restricted free agents this offseason, but I’m sure that Pierre Gauthier will have something to say about that. Many options present themselves to the general manager, but none as attractive as a trade that could bring in an impact player and solve another team’s goaltending woes at the same time. Multiple choices are available, here is a really appealing one:

    Trade Carey Price along with Tomas Plekanec/ Scott Gomez and a throw-in for either Claude Giroux/Jeff Carter from the Philadelphia Flyers. Both are big bodies and are very skilled. Carter had a 40-goal season in 2008-2009 and we saw the talent that Giroux posesses in the playoffs. Also, Giroux is a Quebecer, so it’s a bonus for those that want a talented francophone on the team. Sure, Plekanec had a 70 point season, but what did he produce in the playoffs that Jeff Carter or Claude Giroux can’t… offensively that is. I have no words to describe the importance of Plekanec defensively, as he kills off penalties and might be the best defensive forward for the Canadiens. Scott Gomez on the other hand is a different matter. He takes up 9 million dollars of the Canadiens salary cap, but there’s no denying he was valuable to Canadiens this season. Some people think he underperformed, that he only scored 10 goals the whole season, but the truth is that he is a passer, not a scorer. He had the most assists behind Plekanec. His chemistry with Brian Gionta is sometimes spectacular, but I find that Carter could just as easily fill his shoes, if not do it better.

    Before I say my Go Habs Go cheer, I would like to make a shout-out to the New York Rangers: Who do you think you are? The Yankees? Seriously, who signs Scott Gomez for about 7 million dollars.
    My assessment only included the goaltending and Plekanec problem, but there’s many many more UFAs, trade options, RFAs and many more. But, whatever happens this offseason, GO HABS GO!!!!

  512. Sliver24 says:

    Chicago just won the Cup with Niemi and they still have Huet on the books.  Why in God’s name do you think they’d have any interest at all in Halak?

  513. Chris says:

    Gomez to the Flyers is a non-starter.  If Jeff Carter is on the move, it is because the Flyers have salary issues of their own.  They only have $10 M of cap space and Braydon Coburn is due a big raise, along with having to sign a high-end goalie, whether acquired by trade or free agency.

    Claude Giroux, by all accounts, is a non-starter in trade talks from Philly’s end…they have zero interest in parting with him.

    Plekanec for Carter might be something they’d consider financially, but why trade for him when they can just sign him as a UFA July 1 and trade Carter for another asset?

  514. kempie says:

    I said no backtalk. I’m not 100% convinced Niemi is a dependable starter and I’m sure they have their doubts too. On the other hand, like you say, he did get his name on the cup.  Maybe I just have a huge man-crush on Sharp, but I’d consider a similar trade that converts one of our goalies into a big strong forward.

  515. darkknight says:

    Sorry for all the mistakes,Chris. I really should’ve thought it over more. I really didn’t pay attention to much. I’ll start with the Flyers goaltending woes. I’m sure if you’re Paul Holmgren, the Flyers GM, you’re thinking “I need a solid goaltender” because Emery isn’t very reliable or consistent, and Leighton and Boucher are just not a first string goaltenders. I think the Canadiens can lure them into a deal for Price/Halak, a centre and a throw-in. Now that kind of mentality needs backing up. What do the Canadiens have that Flyers don’t have? Hmm… Once you think about it, although a lot of people would disagree with me, not much at all.

    Goaltender? They’ve got a problem with an inconsistent goaltender and 2 back-ups. Habs: A goalie that can give jaw-dropping performances and a burned out star. Why I say burned out star is because when Price came up, everybody was saying that the cup was gonna come to Montreal because of the new Patrick Roy. What happened? Nothing, zero, nada, zilch! Not a thing!

    Let’s go to defence. There’s no questioning here. Both teams are well set and don’t want to be messing around with their defensive corps. If you compare the two teams, we get this distinction: Flyers have only have 1, maybe 2 potent defensive pairs, while the Canadiens have all three that can easily shut down opposing first lines. I’m not questioning in any way the likes of Chris Pronger and Kimmo Timonen, but who do they have after that. Actually, that’s what everybody thought before, but what happened? That stingy defence got them 2 wins from winning the Stanley Cup. On the other hand, the Habs aren’t too shabby either. Next season, I’m looking forward to quite the back end from this Montreal team. Markov’s not gonna be back at the beginning of the season, but I’ll use him in my count as well. Three defensive lines should be: Markov, Subban. Gill, Gorges. Spacek, ?… I put the ? because there’s a lot of speculation about Hamrlik. Will he be gone? Will he stay? I’m not gonna go into that, so let’s say Spacek is either paired up with Hamrlik, O’Byrne or a slight possibility of having Yannick Weber have another try. But then again, that’s unlikely.

    Offence. WHOA! This is where the big differences come in. Canadiens are classified as following: Small, speedy skilled team who will eat you up if you make too many turnovers in the neutral area. Easily intimidated. If I could underline 3 words, it would be small, easily intimidated. The Flyers now: Big, aggressive rock-em, sock-em team (Quote Don Cherry, who wouldda thunk?) that has skill, strength and poise. Wears down opposing team with hits and aggressiveness. :O Exact opposite teams. If you’re th Canadiens, you’re going ” That’s what we need” and if you’re the Flyers, you’re going ” Hmm… nothing we want on offence, but salary cap issues might make us want to take sosmeone from Montreal or Hamilton to bring some speed into the team.” As you said, Chris, they have cap problems. We can exploit that, but then again we also have cap problems. Carter would be the best addition to the team as he can play wing or centre and most of all he’s big and he’s a power forward. Hmm… I wonder where I heard that one before… O hyeah! Bob Gainey was talking about one for what? 3-4 years. Too bad it hasn’t come it. Sure hope Pierre Gauthier has something to change around here.

    I’m sure I have lots of inaccurate facts & figures in there, so if any of you would like to comment or correct me, I’d be happy to listen.

  516. Chris says:

    Actually, I agree with most of what you wrote.

    Regarding the Philadelphia defence corps, I think you might be underestimating just how good Braydon Coburn and Matt Carle are as well. The top 4 D in Philly might be the best in the league: they are all capable of playing big minutes, and I would take all 4 of them before anybody except Markov in Montreal. And I still think Ryan Parent can develop into a shut-down defenceman. He was absolutely dominant in the OHL (he was Drew Doughty’s defence partner here in Guelph, and really allowed Doughty to gamble because he was so good in his own end) and World Juniors in that role.

    On offence, Carter is certainly expendable. But it is just one of those situations where I think the time to get him was last summer or through the season. Right now, we just don’t have the assets to dangle. Plekanec is a UFA that may or may not return…if he doesn’t, everybody knows that the Habs desperately need a #1 or #2 center, and dealing from a position of desperate need is when you get fleeced.

    Other assets, such as Andrei and Sergei Kostitsyn, really need to play another season in Montreal with (hopefully!) little public admonishment. We all know they are done here, the question is whether anything can be salvaged out of the wreckage. Right now, I can only see it being a Latendresse deal, where the Habs get back somebody else’s struggling headcase.

    I would love to see the Flyers take Price or Halak, a prospect (Pacioretty?) and possibly even our first round pick for Carter. We’re not going to get a player of Carter’s calibre in the 27th position, so this would be a good year to trade the pick. Philly might be interested, having giving up so many resources to get Pronger, but it might take another player.

  517. DiPaolo says:

    My guess is Carey Price is traded next weekend for (order is my preference)


    1 Jeff Carter

    2 Ryan Malone

    3 Nathan Horton

    Any of the 3 will bring us size we need up front.

  518. rogus says:

    Did it ever occur to you that Halak is a one hit wonder? How many other net minders have had stellar regular season or playoff numbers only to vanish the year(s) after. Remember Huet?

  519. adamkennelly says:

    yikes – I sure hope not.  Habs are still apparently getting better offers for Price than Halak – no surprise but Halak is the guy I would move – could still package him for something decent.


    on that list you I would take Carter and Horton – Malone can keep his money and tan.

  520. Sliver24 says:

    Okay, how’s this:  Huet, Seabrook, Sharp and Versteeg for Halak, the brothers K and Spacek.

    Chi-town is DESPERATE for cap space.

    But that means we’ll definitely have to let Plekanec go.

  521. TomNickle says:

    I respect what you say Ed and I take you at your word.  But I weigh the negative with the positive alike and you’re asking me to ignore something that Jaro Halak did during the season, and that’s something that I can’t do.

    I have no problem with people saying he played great, worked hard, earned his opportunity.  I have a problem with people saying that he’s a great teammate who have no indication whether he is or not.

    You do have information, and I respect that, but I’m not about to throw an ultimatum out the window and discount it from my judgement because a media outlet says he’s a great teammate.  They have supported it with nothing.  If he’s a great teammate, give me an example.  And not one that includes him praising his teammates after a win because it’s the same old cliches interview after interview.  His actions speak just as loudly as his words and that goes for every player.

    People were fair when they called Price immature for putting his arms in the air following a save in last season’s playoffs just as people are fair to be skeptical of Halak being called a team first guy following an ultimatum to management.

  522. RC-51 says:

    After what Jaro did in the play-offs his stock is at its highest so you trade him cause you will get good value.

    Price is still young and has more potential. Just my two cents for whatever they’re worth!

  523. salshabs says:

    Price had several chances in these playoffs to assert himself, but, he dropped the ball. He is damaged goods in Montreal.  Yes, maybe he will find his game somewhere else, but, not as a Hab. Frankly, I don’t think he has what it takes, and, I’ve said it here before, BG is to blame. Halak climbed up through the ranks, put in his time, and now has a pedigree earned in the fires of playoff hockey. He is the future. Trade Price, and try to parlay him into a big centerman. His “potential” still has value, exploit it.

    Let Pleks go, he and Gomez are interchangeable. The Kost Bros have to go also. Let them go the KHL if they are untradeable, if they are tradeable, go for whatever you can get, within the Cap, as long as the return is in players who GET playoff hockey.

    Habs are down to one decent scoring line, Gomez, Gionta, Cammy. That, plus a defense that will include PK and Markov is solid. Bring up some of the Dogs. Desharnais, believe me, size aside, is going to score goals for somebody in the NHL, it might as well be in Montreal. Desjardins will be a competant, reliable back-up goalie for Halak. Obviously there’s more third and fourth line players in Hamilton.  But, they need to see if they have what it takes, this is a good time to find out.

  524. Chuck says:

    Several chances? His only work was in relief of Halak and one start. And my guess is that even with a shutuout, JM would have still returned to Halak.


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  525. SeriousFan09 says:

    Desjardins isn’t ready for the NHL yet, I’ve seen him this year in Hamilton, he has talent but his recovery time needs work and he is terrifying when playing the puck, he can’t take a reliable load off of a starting goalie’s shoulders IMO.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  526. K-hab25 says:

    He had several chances in these playoffs, huh? Do you mean his 1 start or the 3 times Halak got yanked and he had mop up duty.

  527. mike g says:

    Enough with this, I’ll put it for you this way…

    If we made a trade last year at the deadline, say Price and a pick for Jeff Carter, do the Flyers win the Cup or not?

    I say YES. Why? Cuz Carter was a total non-factor in their successful playoff run, and a decent goaltender would have won them the Cup. Say what you want about how “good” Leighton looked at times, it wasn’t him it was his excellent team infront of him.

    The Flyers weren’t that far at all from forcing a game 7, and you know how unpredictable game 7’s are. All I know is if we pulled that trade off, Price would have won a Cup and everyone here would be jumping off bridges….

    Think about it.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  528. mbplekfan says:

    Most of what ails this team can be fixed with a few minor tweaks and one major trade.

    Package Hamrlik with one of the goalies ( preferably Price) and go after the big forward.

    That is revenue neutral and leaves money to resign Pleks. (Hamrlik is pricey and will have to be forced on whoever wants Price).

    Do not resign Metro, MAB, or  Darche. White, Weber, Pacioretty move up if they are needed. (younger, tougher, cheaper)

    Re-sign Mara. He’s cheap and had an awful, injury plagued season. He will be better.

    Keep Lapierre unless we can get something back in return. (Not likely)

    Sign Pouliot, he’s cheap and has ridiculous upside.

    Sergei wants to leave so let him. If he wants to stay, sign him cheap.

    Sign the remaining goalie approx 3mill per season, bring up Desjardins.

    Give Endqvist every opportunity to make the club. We need his size on the third and fourth lines.

    If we suck after xmas dump salary.


  529. Hockey Socks says:

    I like the Engqvist idea. He’s been improving and he’s most likely going to be in North America next season either in Hamilton or with Montreal.

  530. j2w4habs25 says:

    LOL. totally agree with you.. it was only 1 start and the 3 times Halak got yanked lol

  531. New says:

    All in all, yeah Pleks and Halak are gone. Desjardins is up, and Koivu is back.

  532. HardHabits says:

    The surest way to the top is via the bottom. Being stuck in the middle keeps you stuck in the middle.

    Either that or hire the up and coming hot commodity AHL coach of the year.

    Like I said a few days ago. The Bolts finish 4th and the Habs finish 9th.

    Hedman is better then PK Subban.

    Stamkos is better than Cammy, Gionta and Gomez combined.

  533. The Nut says:

    Then why do you not have a girl with a tampa shirt on as your pick?? There is tons of room on Tampa’s bandwagon, in fact you would probably be driving the wagon.

  534. matmacat says:

    Is that your motto?

  535. SeriousFan09 says:

    Unless you’re the Islanders, Panthers, Wild, Jackets or Thrashers of course, not all tanking teams get it done and many more have still not followed through. The mighty Penguns are sinking under their own inability to draft and attract free agents already.

    Boucher is apparently already the new Bowman, without coaching a single NHL game, right.

    Victor Hedman has a while to go before he cements himself as a Top NHL Defencemen, he showed good chops but he’s got a lot to learn, how about we wait before we crown one young defender over another so readily?

    Stamkos has a fantastic skill level, but Gionta and Cammalleri combined for 54 goals when they both missed 20+ games on the season, imagine their production without injury. Toss in Cammy’s 13 goals to lead the entire NHL playoffs as well. He can’t replicate the production levels of two players of Gionta and Cammalleri’s qualities, especially factoring in their leadership influence.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  536. mike g says:

    Alright Bob The Re-Builder….

    How did the cellar dwellers of the past 5-10 do with their “build by tanking and drafting properly” strategy?

    Chicago: sucked for 10 years.

    Toronto: we know all too well

    Columbus: playoffs once in franchise history

    Phoenix: playoffs once in 12 years

    Islanders: playoffs once in 8 years

    Atlanta: playoffs once in franchise history

    Florida: no playoffs in 10 years

    St-Louis: playoffs once in 6 years

    LA: playoffs once in 8 years


    Think it’s easy to rebuild through the draft? Unless you catch luck up your u know what and get the 1st overall picks in years where there are players like Crosby, Malkin, Toews and Ovi, you’re in for one heck of a bad decade.

    That’s not a smart plan.

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  537. madmat411 says:

    “And please, Priceians, Halakites and neutrals: Try to keep it civil.” -Boone

    Well, sorry Boone, doesn’t seem like it worked…

  538. The Nut says:

    I say we try and trade AK and SK and a pick or prospect for Horton, not sure how possible that is but I would like to see those 2 guys for him. Let Pleks walk and go after Frolov. This may allow us to re-sign both goalies and if not then I would trade Halak for a youngish defenceman.

    Frolov, Horton, Camm
    Pouliot Gomez Gio
    MaxPac Laps White
    insert pluggers here

    Markov Gorges
    Spacek Hamr/Or defenceman from Halak trade
    Gill PK
    Cheap veteran backup

  539. citizenSanto says:

    lol, too funny!


    Hope has two beautiful daughters. Their names are anger and courage; anger at the way things are, and courage to see that they do not remain the way they are.
    — Augustine of Hippo

  540. HardHabits says:

    The only wagon I drive is the tankwagon. And it’s pic not pick. Sadly the habs have too many good pics and not enough good picks.

    I am a Montrealer so my pic is in line with my city.

    I am going to follow Tampa with great interest, more than all the Price fan-boys will follow whatever team Price ends up with. The reason being is that every Hamilton Bulldogs game I watched last year was 10x more entertaining than any Habs game I watched.

  541. HardHabits says:

    Where the hell have you been?

  542. Chuck says:

    Goalie talk mid-June, and we’re not yet at 500 posts! I know for a fact that the gang on Leafs Inside/Out have that number beat with the big “stripes or no stripes” controversy!


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  543. HardHabits says:

    Leaf fans are still trying to figure out how to use dial-up and how log into PCs.

  544. HardHabits says:

    Top picks are just part of the equation. It takes astute drafting in all rounds, it takes development (as in not rushing PK), it takes good trades and good UFA signings, but in today’s salary cap/collective bargaining agreement/revenue sharing ponzi scheme that is the NHL finishing in the draft lottery 2 out of 5 years seems to be the ticket. Drafting high alone will not suffice but drafting high once or twice in a 5 year period allows for some REAL talent to end up in a team’s line-up.

    The bootom line is, barring Dale Tallon’s RFA mess-up, Chicago is the way to build a team.

    It’s funny that everywhere Bowman goes he leaves with a few Cups in his treasure trove, (except Buffalo but they still got better because of Scotty).

  545. Storm Man says:

    It is funny you bring up Bowman’s name…. He said not to trade Price but you want too.

  546. TomNickle says:

    How dare you use facts.


  547. HardHabits says:

    Where do I say that?

    If the Habs keep Price its draft lottery here we come.

  548. Storm Man says:

    Price for Carter was the deal you would make…….. 16:49 was your posting.

  549. Storm Man says:

    Why is that?

  550. HardHabits says:

    There are two sides to every coin. I’d like to trade Price for Carter if the Habs can sign Halak.

  551. Max_a_million says:

    Pittsburgh and Chicago did extremely well tanking.

    Tampa had some moments from tanking, but alos flubbed it up.  Washington got Ovechkin from a short tanking trip. 

    Otherwise tanking is hard yes. 

    To finish something from previous I agree I think Halak goes to arbitration and gets too much … I wonder if we would agree to pay it for one year only.  The good part of having Price and Halak is you have the option of signing the more reasonable of the two long term, and trading the other in the off-season or wait for an injury during the season.

  552. Storm Man says:

    HH in your post you say how great Bowman is and where he goes he wins, So he has said that it would be a BIG mistake for the Habs to trade Price. But you would trade Price and keep Halak. On one side of the coin you say Bowman is great on the other your saying he is wrong about Price. Is this what you are saying?

  553. Bill J says:

    Keep in mind – HH likes the tank technique.  IMHO it is telling when he says who he wants traded no ?

    IE he is perhaps trying reverse psychology lol


  554. SeriousFan09 says:

    Engqvist is only jumping the pond if offered a chance to make the Canadiens roster was the understanding when he signed his contract with Montreal last summer from what I read. I do think he’s a good candidate to join the team next season.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  555. RaDoonZ says:

    Maybe he can make even more money!

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