Gainey You Need To Start Negotiating Now

First of all, I have been saying all along that now is not the time for major changes in Montreal, it is time for some minor tweaks though. The maojor changes I would make now is to sign some key players before the July 1st deadline in 08, and start working on some UFA’s for 09.

The number one thing the Habs need to focus on right now is signing both Huet and Streit. These two guys are key to the future of the Habs for different reasons. We need Huet to bring Price along slowly, and Streit will be a solid #3 defenseman for years. Currently the Habs are paying Boullion 3 times as much as Streit (1.89M vs 600G), so I would expect him to want in the 2Million dollar range. I think he is worth that number, but Bob would have to find a way to unload Boullion, that would be my first tweak, Boullion for whatever we could get.

Secondly we have to look to 09, where Koivu, Kovalev, and Komisarek are UFA’s. I think now is the time to try to lock up Komisarek for as long as we can get him because he will be one of the cornerstones of this team in the coming years. As far as the other two, Bob needs to look at how our prospects are developing, if there are no goalscorers in the system, we better go get one soon, because if Koivu and Kovalev were to leave today, our already bad 5 on 5 play gets even worse, and the playoffs would only be a dream. Also on that note, if Koivu wants to sign in Montreal, we need to sign him. He is still the heart of our team and he deserves to bring a cup back to Montreal.

Lastly Bob had better take a long hard look at both Ryder and Halak. At the end of the year these guys can walk. (Halak is a RFA) And Halak already wants to be in the NHL where he belongs. If Ryder isn’t in Bobs plans, (its pretty obvious that Halak isn’t) then they need to be packaged together for a goalscorer, or a couple of blue chip scoring prospects.

Some of the goalscorers names that keep coming up are Cheechoo, Hossa, Richards, and Tanguay. However from what Ive seen from Gainey you never know where he will go for a trade, I just hope he makes the sighning soon before we loose a couple of very good players.

15 Responses to Gainey You Need To Start Negotiating Now

  1. simplyhabby says:

    Its pretty obvious Gainey is looking at the 08-09 season (100 year anniversary) as the year to go for it.  Many of our top players will have expiring contracts at that time (Higgins, Kovalev, Komi, Higgins, Koivu) and with the teams direction, it would ne a reasonable conclusion the HAbs will be solid contenders at that time (if they progress postviely from their current pace).

    Rule of thumb is you don't negotiate a contract extension or new contracts until the last year of the contract.  There are major advantages got both the players and the team.  Yes, there are some excpetions (Crosby) but that was exceptional.

    I see your point however that we need to keep these cornerstones in our system and not let a Souray situation happend again. (UFA walk)

    I do like what you are saying about Streit and I am sure Gainey wil do his best to keep him here in Montreal.  Streit like Montreal, he has a lot of respoect for the team that gave him a chance to play and I think a 1.5 -2 million multi year contract would be respectable. 

    Huet is an odd situation.  Here is a guy that I have no clue why some hab fans out there diss him because he is the better goalie on the team.  No the future mind you but the present.  It is a perfect situation to allow Price to blossom under the great coaching of Melanson and the veteran presence Huet birngs.  Of course, you don't want him to leave UFA as well.  If we can get a great player for Huet, Ryder and a pick, then lets do it but I would like to see (as you suggested) to keep Huet and allow price to be the man in 2-3 years. 

    I am not sure how much we wil get for Ryder, Halak and a pick.  Montreal is at a poitn now that I don't beleive minor tweaking will do much for this team.  We need an impact player on Ryder's wing.  We need a physical power forward there (and every other team in the league to).  Gainey will have to be creative to obtain that type of player without trading an impact roster player to do it.

    Just think, if we had the PF on Ryder's wing, Koivu and Higgins would actually be able to move around more freely and create havoc as they would now have an insulating physical presence in the slot.


  2. habsgod says:

    well i agree with you on some points in your listed streit as our number3 defenceman when i think you meant #4defenceman(hamrlik is our #3 defenceman)and yes bob will lock up komisarek long term!!i think he will make a trade or 2 this year but i don't know if it will be the big names that you are mentioning!!we will surprise us with a deal that nobody was coming or heard ''so-called rumors!''but i believe he will!and he won't make the deal unless it greatly helps us!!i think kovalev will be signed after next season on a 2year deal!!i think koivu will be about the same maybe a year longer!!and yes we need some sniper prospects we have alot of goaltending and defencemen now it's time to load up on forwards!!,but i think sergei kostistynand possibly,d'agostini and paxoretti could be a few of those guys!!as well as ryan white and ben maxwell from tthe western league!!

  3. leafy says:

    With goaltending an defence now solidified, Montreal's biggest need right now is to get some size up front.  The forwards are fast, but more size is needed, which really has been the team's downfall in playoffs past.  If this can be corrected, look out.  This is a pretty dangerous team.

  4. habsoverserver says:

    The better Huet plays, the harder it will be to keep him. He is proving he can be a starter but Montreal has a starter of the future. 

    If Huet continues to rank in the top 10 in most categories, he will be looking for a three year 10 million dollar deal and I don't see Montreal being able to offer more than two years and four million. 

    Gainey can't get much for Halak he might as well keep him as an emergency starter.  Ryder is only worth trading if Montreal has someone better to replace him. 

  5. habsrock99 says:

    This is the way I see things shaping up next year. We have 3 defensive spots potentially opening up with Streit and Brisebois (UFA) and Gorges (RFA). Streit in all liklihood will re-sign. Brisebois is most likely going to retire and I believe Gorges should be let go. That leaves 2 defensive roster spots open for our prospects. So now we can finally have Ryan O'Byrne, David Fischer, Pavel Valentenko or Alexei Emelin or another defnsive prospect actually play in he NHL.

    I've been saying trade Bouillon ever since 2000. He isn't all that good and plays stupidly most nights. I firmly believe the only reason he's still in Montreal is because he's French. Well, you know what, I'm French and I say F**k the Language issues and let's get someone with talent on the blueline.

    Now, up front, we have 4 potential Free Agents. Ryder and Smolinski are UFA's and Grabovski and Kostitsyn are RFA's. I believe at least one of these players will come back and that's Kostitsyn. So, we now have 3 Forward spots open, potentially, which can be filled by the likes of Sergei Kostitsyn, Matt D'Agostini and another Free Agent signing, hopefully a decent goal scorer (if their is one available). 

    As for Huet, I say let him walk or trade him at the Deadline. Or, do what Nashville did and trade him to a team that will most likely need his services most (IE. Detroit). Tell me, how much can a goalie with 145 Games of NHL service help Carey Price? He can help this year for sure and maybe a little next year too but that's it. He'll hurt Price more then he'll help in the long run.

    So, instead of Huet and his 145 Games, why not sign a cheaper goalie with WAY more experience. Someone such as Curtis Joseph (913 NHL games) or Ed Belfour (963 NHL Games). Someone who will play maybe 1 year and give Price actual advice and who actually knows what they're talking about. How about Jocelyn Thibault (576 NHL Games), Patrick Lalime (376 NHL Games) or Chris Osgood (633 NHL Games)? These goalies would not only help Price more, they would also come at a much cheaper price tag (IE. less then 2 million) where as Huet is going to command more then 3-4 easily.

    Hell Gainey could even sign a former #1 goalie and have him split the duties with Price much like how the Habs traded for Brian Hayward in the 80's.
    The smartest thing would be to sign a more experienced goalie at a much cheaper rate then Huet would want. Also, Huet has something like 6 NHL play-off games under his belt where as CUJO has 131, Belfour has 161 and a Cup, Lalime has 41 plus a career 1.77 GAA in the play-offs and Osgood has 87 including 2 Cups. I don't know about anyone else, but I'd take a less expensive and more experienced goalie then Huet.

  6. THEGREATHAB says:

    I did list Streit as the number 3,  I think in a year or two he will be more valuable than  Hamrlick, just by how much he has progressed since hes been in Montreal.  I dont know about the names that I mentioned, I was just saying they all have been rumored to be coming to Montreal. 

    As far as Kovalev,  I think he will walk after his contract is up.  Im basing this on last year, right now he seems motivated and the media is leaving him alone.  But as soon as he starts to slip again the media will be on him and he will want out again. 

  7. Drifter says:

    I do agree that cornerstones such as Higgins and Komisarek should be locked up long term, and they will in the final years of their contract. This is the organization that honed them and I can't see them going elsewhere when they are so appreciated here.

    Koivu and Kovalev will be locked up and we will make a run at the cup, no question. hat it comes down to is finding that finisher and a little bit more size.

    I say package Ryder and Huet. We just don't have the money to keep Huet around and he's a proven starter in this league. With Price playing like he is, he's only going to get better. We have most of the future of this franchise in place at the moment. Brisbois, Boullion, Georges and Streit are probably gone after this season because of the amount of talent we have on the back end waiting to get in. The youth will give us a better chance to win. Streit is a fine utility guy but he could be packaged nicely with Ryder and Huet to bring in a first line scorer.

    Rumor has it that Ovechkin is having issues resigning with Washington. I wonder if we packaged Huet, Ryder, Grabovski, Streit, and 2 1st round picks, could we make a proper pitch for him.

    He'd fit under our cap at the point I think even with his massive contract, although I haven't done the math.

    We have the prospects to replace Smolinski when he goes as well as others. The kostitsyn brothers on a line would be sick. Even if we couldn't resign Kovalev. And that's a big if.

    That trade would improve Washington and Montreal great deals.

    I can see it now, even if it is a long shot

    Higgins – Koivu – Ovechkin
    A. Kostitsyn – Plekanec – S. Kostitsyn
    Latendresse – Chipchura – Kostopolous
    Begin – Lapierre – Dandenault

    Komisarek – Markov
    Fisher – Hamrlik
    O'Byrne – Yemelin


    Tell me that team isn't dangerous as all hell. Please remember, this is just wishes and that's only if Kovalev wouldn't sign or we couldn't after an Ovechkin signing…which is near impossible right now. lol

    Here's to hoping Gainey does something….anything.

  8. PointMeAtTheSky says:

    It's never too early. You don't want to risk losing your talent. Montreal has ALOT of re-signing to do in the coming year.

    08 FA:



    09 FA:



    That's almost the whole team.

    Most of those players should be resigned. The Habs have a good mix of young up and comers and veterans. Guys like Begin, Smolinski, Kostopolous and Dandenault are perfect cheap grinders who can help with the development of Chipchura and Lapierre. Hey..that makes your 3rd and 4 lines right there..


    Like I said, young up and comers with veteran role-players.

    As for the top 6..well, Koivu, Higgins and Plekanec are your core there. So that's half of it right there.. The Kostitsyn brothers would also probably be there, so that leaves one spot. Candidates for that position include Latendresse, Kovalev, Ryder..I'm not sure if D'Agostini is top 6 or a grinder, but he should make the team eventually.

    So you have Higgins-Koivu-_______

    Again, you don't have to keep all of Smolinski, Kostopolous, Begin and Dandenault. If a younger guy can take the role, then fine.

    As for defense, your top 4 has to be Markov-Komisarek and Hamrlik-Streit
    The other two spots would be for the prospects to fight for I guess.

    In goal you have Price starting with Halak as the back-up(I'm not convinces he's a number 1 goalie,). But I guess Danis could fill that role as well. Huet could help in the development of Price, so he's not thrust into the number 1 job all along. We maybe re-signing him for 2 years would be a good idea.

  9. KingCanada says:

    First of all resigning players doesnt count as "major changes" lol

    Anyways if ur thinking of trading Ryder and Halak they would never be enough to trade for Cheechoo, Hossa, Richards or Tanguay.  Those are al first line material players.

    Halak is a long shot NHL starter and Ryder is a one trick pony who goes threw slumps because people figure him out.

  10. sakurulz says:

    You’re a funny guy…Mark Streit n.3???
    Mark Streit is one of the weakest dmen in his own one..that guy will never be more than a 3rd pairing dman on an ordinary team!

    With the amount of youngsters comin up, i wouldnt be surprised Streit walks at the end of th season..

    For Komi, obviously Gainy wll resign him…
    Kovy will maybe finish his contrat in Mtl but after that hell be gone, i say Gainey trades him by next summer!!

    Koivu i think will get resigned for less $$$$ and finish his career here in Mtl…he helps young guys which will son fill up the roster!

    For Halak and Ryder, again, come back on earth nand if you don’twant him, what makes you think a professional NHL GM will give a lot for them????

    We ae falln in the TorontoVancouvercategory of fans with dumb trades…

  11. habs_punk says:

    Koivu wants to play for a contender. This year and the next will be HUGE factors in whether he decides to stay in Montreal.

  12. habsgod says:


               4. STREIT

  13. sercote says:

    There's no way Ovechkin is leaving Washington.And even IF there was,there's not a chance in hell they would give him away for three UFAs,a struggling 24 year-old rookie and a handful of draft picks.Think about it.Ovechkin is gonna be the NHL top goal-scorer for the next 15 years,along with Kovalchuk.If you turn it around and you put yourself in WSH GM's shoes,would you make that trade?If your answer is yes,that's the reason why you're not GM in the NHL. 

  14. Drifter says:

    The ONLY WAY my answer would ever be yes in that situation is if all negotiations with Ovechkin failed for a contract. He apparently is looking for 9-10 million a year. I agree with you that it would be a rediculous trade, but I was saying that it's something that won't happen, and also that it would be smarter for WSH's GM to trade for several first rounders, a proven starter, and some prospects and NHL roster players to improve the team than lose Ovi for nothing. That's all.

    I know it's not going to happen ever, but meh, a man can dream. lol

  15. sakurulz says:

    i agree with u im startin to doubt hell last here too but he has more chance to do it than ovalev…he has been here all his life it wouldnt be an easy call for him to leave!!!
    but i agree with u…

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