Habs trade rumors

Recent postings on the fourth period suggest that the Habs are trying to obtain Sami Kapanen from Carolina and are trying to deal Jeff Hackett to the Bruins. The Habs have demonstrated over the past year and a half that they do not know how to improve their team through trades.

Montreal management has made several errors since the beginning of the 2001-02 season. None of their recent trades or signings have worked out. Further, they have priced their moveable talent out of the market. Of the trade and waiver acquisitions: Audette, Van Allen, Berezin, Lindsay, McKay, Czerkawski and Blouin, only McKay has a regular shift with the Habs and it took half the season to put him on the second line. The rest are either gone, in the minors or in the press box.

Montreal has been rumored at various times to have shopped much of their team including Czerkawski, Audette, Kilger, Hackett, Bulis, Petrov, Rivet, Traverse and Dykhuis. In almost every case Montreal asked for too much and the deal fell through. Through benchings and demotions they have reduced the value of their trade assets to the point where players like Audette and Czerkawski have negative trade value. They are worth less than zero in a trade.

The obvious stupidity of this season is that the Habs came into it needing to replace two injured players – Gino Odjick and Sheldon Souray – who represented the lone muscle on a puny team. Other than a mid season pick up of Blouin who doesn’t scare anyone, and doesn’t get to play often, they have failed to address their weaknesses. Instead, management has spent the season screwing around underbidding for quality players. They even took a step backward in trading away Asham, their only young physical forward, for a scorer they stuck in the minors.

For eighteen months, the Habs gathered random bodies and threw them together in hopes of creating a team. That effort has failed to improve the team, wasted $10 million in salary, slowed the development of key rookies and made Montreal an even more undesirable place for free agents. Trading for Kapinen when the team has too many small scorers and dumping their more consistent goalie signals a continuation in stupidity on Montreal’s part. It is time to address the needs of the team, not play trade of the day.

26 Responses to Habs trade rumors

  1. mikster says:

    Montreal has a very bright future, and after watching Marcel Hossa last night, wow. Not a popular thing to see European players drive to the net like that. But, he has the speed to do so.

    Kapanen on with Koivu would look very good, and after an ugly game by both teams last night, the Canadiens were winless in their last 7. I think Marcel deserves to stay up until he deserves to be sent down. But, adding Kapanen is a pretty good idea.

    However, i don’t think the Canes would put goaltending as their main problem. It hasn’t been good, but they need scoring as well. Lots of teams do…

  2. wingerxx says:

    Adding Kapanen is a super idea. Brilliant even! But who would they deal for him??

  3. mikster says:

    Not much to trade from the Habs. The Candy Canes need scoring….Montreal doesn’t have any either.

  4. jerrod79 says:

    I agree, it should be easy to make trades that involve plummers, but Savard is proving himself out of the savvy we all originally thought he had. Montreal needs to quit trying to turn french and/or european softies into stars. Audette, Czerkawski, Petrov, these players don’t have the size and skill necessary. Furthermore, how many over the hill leaders do we need? McKay and Gilmour…I don’t think so. Furthermore, we let Guy Carbonneau get away. If you look back to the last cup in ’93, the team has never recovered from Guy Carbonneau leaving the organization. It started to get back last year, and is down again.

    I can’t believe how Montreal makes career minor leaguers out of young talent…Jason Ward, Hossa, Hainsey…it even took Theodore too long to get the respect he deserves.

    Montreal is not going to win the stanley cup anytime soon, so it needs to grow with: Hainsey, Ribeiro, Hossa, Komisarek, Souray, Markov, Koivu, Bulis, Zednik. Put the rest of the plummers around them with theo in the pipes and make some damn trades. enough is enough.

  5. wingerxx says:

    the problem is that I don’t think Montreal has much of anything that other teams really want. They need some firepower up front, and I really thought that they ripped the Isles off when they traded for Czerkawski…but it turns out the Isles really won that trade as unbelievable as it sounds now…as least for now they have, unless a miracle happens. I think for the most part…they’re going to have to work with what they have, unless the irresistable trade offer comes along…which might happen, one never knows anymore…

  6. MantaRay says:

    Hackett to Boston is an increbily stupid trade. Why would you improve your division rival with a strong player like Hackett. Theodore STILL needs to prove himself to the hockey world that last year wasn’t a fluke. Hackett has played better than Theodore, why trade him?

    I do not see a very bright future for the Habs. Haboverserver is absolutely correct in his assesment.

    The Habs need alot of work. Although I thought Savard did a great job last season (Perrault, Gilmour, Dackell) and this year (McKay) the Habs don’t have much to show for it.

    They need at least 4 quality defensemen, Markov is a stud, but very little else.

    The forwards are way too small and they lack a power forward in a major way.

    Outside of the goaltending I am not impressed with this team. Is Gilmours abscence that big of a team let down?

  7. mikster says:

    No, the Habs a very bright future with their prospects. They will have a good young necleus to build around in the future.

    Hacket to the Bruins? Meh…weak. What could the Habs possibly get in return anyway from the Bruins? I guess Huml would be part of it. But, they can get a better deal elsewhere. Hackett will be traded by March, no doubt about that.

    Habs do need a lot of work, but they are playing quite well with what they have right now.

  8. PeterPuck says:

    Montreal has only one problem- the COACH, the D-men could be upgraded but to give them the benefit of the doubt, they have no system in place, everybody is forgetting that the HABS were 4thish in the PK last year, and they had the same D-men, the difference is that they had Carbo teaching them a system. This year, it is really showing how bad Therr-idiot is, no Carbo to save his butt. Get a coach like Larry Robinson and this D would not be that bad. It is Therr-idiot that has caused Audette and Cherawzki the bad start by bouncing them all over the place, lets not forget how great Audette played in the playoffs. Now I am not saying that the Habs are a Stanley Cup contender, but they are better than what they are showing. The habs have a very bright future, we have strong depth in the farm system , this is evident by the Hamilton Bull Dogs being the top farm team in the league. If Terr-idiot was not there, i would bet that Cherawzki and Audette would being playing much better.

    I agree, trading Hackett to the Bruins would be nuts, but that might come in a three way deal and the Habs would have no control. Hackett deserves to play more but Therr-idiot does not allow for that.

    It’s simple, fire the coach, Savard step aside to become head scout., hire Gainey has GM, Robinson has coach and Langway has assitant coach, and I would bank that the Habs would make the final 8 maybe 4.

  9. PeterPuck says:

    stupid move by the Habs, are you forgeeting how bad he was (Kapanen) was in the playoffs, he didnt score until the 3rd round. He has no heart!!!!!

  10. wingerxx says:

    true, very true *sigh…well, all players have their drawbacks i think

  11. rojoke says:

    Hainsey and Hossa are career minor leaguers? Hainsey just came out of college, and Hossa is in his second year. I wouldn’t call them career minor leaguers yet. Ward and Eric Chouinard may be headed that way though. Ward has been leading the Bulldogs for most of the season, yet hasn’t gotten the call. Garon might get buried down there too, if Hackett doesn’t get traded. And then we’ll have to wait for Olivier Michaud, or get a reasonable back-up some other way.

  12. rojoke says:

    I would have to disagree with you there. Adding Kapanen, another small forward, is only adding to a glut of small forwards. What they really need is a big defenceman who can clear traffic and bring a physical presence to the team. No one on their blue line strikes fear into opposing forwards, and Kilger doesn’t use his body nearly as much, or as effectively, as he should. Plus, they’d have to move either Kapanen to Zednik to the right side. If Hossa stays, and plays well, that could solve that problem anyway.

  13. revolution says:

    Montreal needs a big power forward..The physical game of Montreal forwards is essentially limited to McKay and Kilger. Regarding Audette, he played well in the playoffs last year. Other pressing need is that of some decent defense. Patrice Brisebois, now the team’s no.2 defenseman (behind Markov), needs to get some skating lessons or be put on waivers. He’s been costing us 4 million a year. His trade value must be at least a draft pick, considering the Rangers’ current defensive situation. Dykhuis and Traverse haven’t been playing well either.

    I wouldn’t count out Czerkawski just yet, he’s scored 14 points in 7 games for Hamilton of the AHL. Michel Therrien hasn’t been fair in giving icetime, I fail to understand why Audette was kept in the lineup and Czerkawski sent down.

    Look at the stats:

    Audette- 34 GP 2G 9A 11PTS Avg Ice time: 14:28

    Czerkawski- 25GP 2G 8A 10PTS Avg ice time: 12:03

    Those stats are horrible for two players who were supposed to be the answer to Montreal’s socring problems. However, it also shows Czerkawski has done as much as Audette in less games and less average time on ice.

    Nonetheless, I have to agree with you about Montreal picking up random bodies. We just have too many average forwards, and not enough reliable defense. Montreal has to try and get rid of some of the players who haven’t been playing up to level. It’s been a long time since Montreal had a decent front office and decent coaching. When Savard first arrived he provided fans some hope of becoming a contender again. Perhaps, us Habs fans should have lost hope the day he traded Savage and a draft pick to Phoenix for Berezin.

    Well, atleast he’s drafted well in terms of defense.

  14. revolution says:

    Yeah, it would be something if Montreal stopped hiring all the rookie French Canadians for all their coaching positions. The only one which ever worked was Carbonneau as assistant coach responsible for the penalty killing. They replaced this with bumbling friend of Therrien’s, Guy Charron. And guess what? We now have gone from being one of the best teams in penalty killing to one of the worst.

  15. revolution says:

    Couldn’t agree with you more about adding a big defenseman. Kilger and McKay are decent physical grinders, can’t expect too much from Kilger if he’s not getting decent icetime. He was playing so well with Zednik and Koivu and then that idiot Therrien takes him off the line.

  16. Tradedude says:

    Well Montreal defineately NEEDS to make a move, my suggestions are czercawski and audette, trade em for someone physical. I can’t stand skin and bone over-rated players.

    I would maybe trade Kilger if your going to get someone to match his skill. I like the Perrault-Gilmour thing they have going on now, 2 former leafs have skill and talent. Yanic puts it top-shelf every time.

    Kapanen could be a name mentioned, BUT i still think they don’t need any more non-hitter players.

    I’d go after Isbister.

  17. Tradedude says:

    om wait not kilger, Petrov, CanaDIENS would never give kilger away.

  18. Phailak says:

    I only see one problem in Montreal and it’s our defense. Our scoring is doing pretty well with our first and second line centers in the top scorers of the league (Koivu is 19th) and Perreault must be close with 35 pts. Furthermore, both Zednik and Perreault, if they keep the pace, will easily score over 30 goals. Koivu and Zednik have accomplished this without a regular third linemate, same for Perreault who’s only constant linemate has been Doug Gilmour.

    Now we are seeing nice stuff from Hossa who MIGHT be the big player we’ve been looking for.

    Denfense really blows, the only positive note is Markov, he is by far the best both defensively and offensively. Brisebois’ a joke, Traverse is getting way too much ice time for no apparent reason and Dykhuis should not even be playing.

    The 3rd line of Juneau-Dackell and whoever Therrien deceides to put there is not having the desired impact for the ice time they are logging and they are useless especially for the games Bulis isn’t with them.

    The goalies are fine in my opinion, keep Hackett or not I don’t really see a problem in trading him as long as it’s to a western team.

    Finally I believe Therrien is not doing his job very well, he has heart but not the proper “skills” to coach an NHL team. Who’s the last coach in MTL to have NHL experience, Jacques Demers in 93 when we won the cup?

    Hey it’s only my opinion but I watched every game for the past 7-8 years so I know the team pretty well…


  19. zednik says:

    I don’t like the turn Random Bodies, because you fail to see the reasoning behind many of these deals.

    Berizen: Savage was not going to re-sign better to get something then get nothing, The Habs made an offer to Savage he rejected it, they got the best player available it didn’t work out, they ended up getting a pick for a player that would have left for free.

    Van Allen/Audette: Again see above, Ruchinsky has a false sence of his own value he was going to leave at seasons end, I hated to see Bruniet Go but if they want him back he is out there. The Point again is, get Audette who will be around next season or lose Ruchinsky for nothing. Even if they get a pick for Audette it doesn’t matter because Savard is able to get something for nothing.

    Czerkawski: THis I blame squarely on the coach.

    He played on the first line all preseason and was among the scoring leaders, then he gets bounced around? As for the deal itself find me a GM in the NHL that wouldn’t have give up a 4th line player for this guy, Hind SIght is 20/20.

    Montreal may have been rumored to be trading many of these player but I would doubt there is much more then some butt sniffing in many of these cases. Traverse won’t go anywhere he is FINALLY showing signs of development, I Echo the same statement for Kilger.

    The Habs as they sit are not great but not awful, Savard doesn’t have to be in a rush to trade these guys because he has a very deep farm system, Markov, Komaserek, Hossa and Hainsey are the tips of the iceberg.

    Savard has always made very calculated deals, even though somoe of them work out I think you have to factor how many of the players he dealt are still with the clubs that they were dealt to.

    I am going to sit back and see what he gets for Hack, AUdette and Czerkawski then I will bitch will then, Meh he hasn’t done anything to shake my faith so let the mad work.


  20. habs_88_4life says:

    If the Kapanen trade does go through, I would think the Habs will make an even stronger pursuit of Teemu Selanne. The question with the trade is what is available to give up ? I’m almost certain Carolina wouldn’t want Audette, but could use Czerkawski if he started to wake up.

    Proposed trade:

    To Montreal:

    Kapanen and Hill/Hedican

    To Carolina:

    Czerkawski, Dykhuis and Traverse

  21. Tradedude says:

    and i thought the flyer fans were the stupidest…..

  22. rojoke says:

    Stronger pursuit of Selanne? Was it ever really that strong. It was reported during last year’s playoffs that Savard wanted to make him an offer, but that’s where it ended. It was assumed that Koivu would sell him on the team’s new ownership direction, but nothing ever came of it. I’m not really certain if Savard ever made any offer at all. At any rate, I don’t believe that Selanne’s is available, unless the Sharks really tank after the break.

  23. rojoke says:

    I think the reason that Audette got more ice time is two-fold. First, there was specualtion that his wrist hadn’t fully healed, so they decided to try and let him play through it as much as possible. Secondly, Audette didn’t do the one thing that will kill a player’s reputation with a coach; ask for a trade in the press. If Czerkawski had kept it between himself, Savard and Therrien, then Therrien may not have moved him around like a bishop on a chessboard. It may have affected his teammates willingness to stick by him as well. Hackett knew that he was no longer the no. 1 goalie on the team, and even said he expected to be traded. But never at any time did he ASK for one. He played his ass off every start he got, and played very well. But he did it with class and respect, for his coach and his teammates.

    On the subject of Mr. October, exactly how much would you have been willing to pay him? $3.25 million he’s making in Phoenix right now? He scored 6 goals in 30 games for Phoenix after potting 14 in 47 games for Montreal last season. This season, 21 games, 2-5-7. And he’s out indefinitely with a concussion. The team is already over-paying Brisebois at $4 million a year, how’d you feel if Savard had kept and signed Savage at that price.

  24. revolution says:

    Then what was the point of acquiring Berezin in the deal? Should of just traded Savage for a 1st or 2nd rounder.

  25. revolution says:

    Selanne’s got an escape option on his contract at the end of the year. I don’t believe Savard made an offer that was seriously considered by Selanne. I believe Boston did though.

  26. AvangardChistov says:

    Mathieu Garon is still green, but there’s your backup for the future.

    if they make the playoffs again, great, but just trim the fat, and admit that it’s a rebuilding year.

    not that they could get anything for them, but on the backline, cut loose Dykhuis, Breeze-by–get whatever you can for them, and since it’s a rebuilding year, give Hainsey and Komisarek regular ice time and don’t place so much expectation on them.

    on paper, this backline doesn’t look too bad-

    Markov Hainsey

    Komisarek Rivet

    Traverse and then when he returns, Souray as the sixth.

    not a bad defensive core to build from.

    personally, i don’t think Doug Gilmour has been worth much, other than the proverbial veteran leadership and smashed penalty box plexi-glass; hasn’t been productive in nearly a decade.


    never was too sold on Randy McKay, though the Habs are emaciated up front and his size is welcome..but didn’t this guy leave his best chunks behind him, circa 99?

    as partial as i am to slick skating euros, Montreal is just overflowing with them..

    keep Dackell, Bulis, Koivu, Juneau..but trade off what you can [Petrov, Czerkawski] for some size up front.

    no need to rush along Hossa, although i think this kid is going to be decent little poor man’s version of his brother in about two years.

    same with Ribiero, kid’s got great hands, should be a good one..

    who knows? in the next 1-3 yrs, Habs could pull off another 93 or even 86, but at the moment there’s too many Kjell Dahlin’s and not enough Bob Gainey’s for that to happen.

    the time to retool is NOW.

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