The Montreal Canadiens surprised everyone by beating the Washington Capitals and the Pittsburgh Penguins before losing to the Philadelphia Flyers in the Eastern Conference Finals. This team had been depleted by injuries all season long and were finally able to pull everything together in the playoffs despite playing without their number one defenseman Andrei Markov.
Bob Gainey was heavily criticized for a number of his moves over the past few years but his overall record doesn’t look so bad. The Montreal Canadiens made it to the playoffs in five of the six years that Gainey was GM and three of those times they made it past the first round. He was also criticized for signing small players last summer but it certainly wasn’t a factor in these playoffs.
LANCE HORNBY, QMI Agency
The Maple Leafs could have a brawny German defenceman joining their internationally flavoured roster next season.
Korbinian Holzer , a draft pick from the John Ferguson Jr. era in 2006, signed a two-year entry level contract on Thursday morning.
Ilya Kovalchuk is not heading to Russia to play for the KHL, at least not yet.
According to sources, the KHL will be an option for Kovalchuk , but there is nothing imminent.
Sovsports, a Russian sports website, is reporting that SKA St Petersburg made an offer to Kovalchuk that would see the sniper make $30 million over a three-year span.
Upon suggesting this, I’m half convinced that someone is going to start up a Don’t Trade Marty blog on blogspot by the end of the week. This is by no means what I’m suggesting (yet), just something to think about as a possibility. Now in the future, trading away Martin St. Louis may become a reality for Lightning fans and it will cause some uproar among the faithful (yes all 10 of you).
Darryl Sutter is safe.
Jarome Iginla, too.
On Thursday, Calgary Flames president Ken King quashed whatever lingering speculation remained that his under-fire general manager and/or sputtering star captain/right-winger will be employed anywhere but the Pengrowth Saddledome this winter.