Take a look Mr Gainey, you want the Cup next year?

As I read earlier the “how to tweak your team” articles have come out of the woodwork. So I thought I would write an article about the steps Montreal may need to take to reach the “rebuilt” stage.First and foremost, letting a valued veteran defencemen walk away from your team who wants to play in your city for less money is a bad move. Quintal was the heart and soul of the D in Montreal for the past three years and was going to help usher in the future big 3 in Montreal (Hainsey, Komisarek and Markov) and I know that the spot emptied by the departure of Quintal (his alternate captaincy) will likely land full time on Craig Rivet but it should go to someone more deserving like Patrice Brisebois, who should be rewarded for the years of abuse he received from the fans.

Secondly, to add size up front you have to give up some of the riches that we have ac*****ulated over the years..a package that would attract the Bruins interest in Thorton and Lapointe could be Koivu, Hossa, Bulis and a First rounder..Koivu hasn’t shown that he has much interest in being the Captain in Montreal in the past few years and has never really done anything to show that he deserves this honour.

Third, the Habs started to show this plan this season but we must play the kids in every game we can..the Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers are a good example of what a team can become when they grow up together, the spots are open for the kids like Higgins to take in Montreal and they must seize the opportunity.

The Habs must give more opportunities to the future of the franchise. Players like Dagenais and Ward showed spots of Brilliance when used in the proper situations this season and there is no reason to believe that in three years time Ward will be wearing a letter on his shirt.

Perhaps the most important move the Canadiens must make is to bring in a Gainey coach. Julien is a decent coach but he is not a Bob Gainey coach, promote Doug Jarvis (who understands the pressure of PLAYING in Montreal) and return Julien to Hamilton. As we can see by the Bonk trade (which was a steal for the Canadiens as we gave up a career backup for Bonk and Huet who is still a youngster) Gainey is ready to put his fingerprints on this team and really mold it into his.

These moves would help elevate the Canadiens to every year contenders immediately and could even bring a Stanley Cup to the magical city of Montreal for the first time in 11 seasons!


47 Responses to Take a look Mr Gainey, you want the Cup next year?

  1. TheCoach says:

    Thornton to Montreal? It’s a nice thought but why would Boston trade their best player to their biggest rival? It would be like Toronto trading Sundin to Ottawa.

    Also, I don’t see what you have against Koivu. This guy gives 110% every night and he is the on-ice leader for the Canadiens. He is the hardest working player and even though he is small, he battles against the opposing teams best and biggest centers every night. Koivu proved, at least to me, that he is deserving of the “C” during this years playoffs.

  2. Shevy says:

    Thornton would be nice to see in a Canadiens jersey but again Koivu might be a high price to pay. Koivu is more dedicated than Thornton as we saw from the playoffs. While Thornton stood around hardly playing the puck, Koivu got into the corners and did the hard work as well as throw a few checks when he had to. His fiesty attitude toward opponents is what gave Montreal the spirit to win. And in key times he also showed he was a good captain by yelling at the players who were slacking off in their areas.

  3. angryjew says:

    “As we can see by the Bonk trade (which was a steal for the Canadiens as we gave up a career backup for Bonk and Huet who is still a youngster)”

    sorry to let u know but huet will be 29 this year so he is not a youngster anymore. and garon only 26 and has alot more potential then huet to make it in this league. and u are the only person i have ever seen that says that garon is a career backup. every nhl analysis expert that has wrote an article about this trade says that he will be giving checkmanek a run for his money in goal this year.

  4. AfroCon says:

    First, letting Quintal go was an good move since he would’ve ended up playing 7th defenseman and he clearly stated that he wouldn’t play that spot.

    Komisarek showed us that he can do a better job than Quintal and although I really liked Quintal, his time in Montreal was passed.

    Look for Hainsey to maybe make a push for the big team this year.

    Second, I would never do that trade. Yes you get size but you lose a ton of future and your hardest working player.

    Thorton is good, very good but with recurring back problems and what he showed us in the last playoffs, I prefer Koivu.

    Plus, I wouldn’t want Lapointe and his 5 millions dollars contract in my team.

    Third, I agree with you on this one. The kids need to come up and fill the empty spots left by the departures of Quintal, Juneau, Perreault, Dackell and Langdon.

    There’s a bunch of good prospects available and I’m sure we can fill those holes with a few of the these guys:

    Andrei Kastsitsyn – Plenty of potential and has already played in the big leagues in Russia so he might already be ready. I’d try and play him right of Ribeiro instead of Dagenais.

    Alex Perezhogin – If he’s allowed to play in the NHL, I say give him a shot, the guy’s got skills.

    Chris Higgins – Plays a good two way game and is very fast. I’d see him on the third line with Bonk and Ward.

    Ron Hainsey – Just needs to put the effort in and he’ll be a very solid defenseman.

    Kyle Chipchura – Doubt he’ll be ready for this year but you never know. If he plays well, put him on the 4th line center with Begin and Bulis.

    Yann Danis If Huet doesn’t do the job, Julien might want to give this kid a shot. He’s quick and could do the job.

    As far as the coach goes, I don’t see why you’d want to change Julien… He did a great job and is good with the kids which is exactly what Montreal needs right now.

    If he wasn’t a Bob Gainey kinda coach, I don’t think he’d have given him a new contract…

  5. AfroCon says:

    Who wouldn’t give Cechmanek a run for his money??? LOL

    Just kidding. I think Garon has a lot of potential but I still think Gainey made a good move. We’ve got Yann Danis who’ll be able to get the backup job soon enough and shows plenty of potential.

    I just think that Montreal is stronger with Huet and Bonk than just Garon.

  6. TheCoach says:

    Also, Bonk is an overpaid player who does not use his size to his advantage. In Ottawa he was often lazy and never showed much emotion. He is a consistant 40-50 point scorer, but that is not worth 3.5 million dollars. Bonk will be the third line center and Garon will likely be the starting goalie for L.A. This deal is hardly a “steal.”

  7. skandelousHABSfan says:

    I dont know what the person that wrote this article was thinking, but he clearly wasnt thinking about he future of the Habs. He wanted to make a ridiculas trade, fire an up an coming and very solid coach, and mentioned that they should have kept an aging and slow defenceman while at the same time playing the kids (make up your mind).

    I know everyone in montreal thinks he is a GM (i know because i am one of those ppl) but all i can say is thank god this guy is not one, and is only a wiseass on the internet (which, unfortunatly i am as well)

    let gainey do his think boys, he knows what he is doing. In my opinion he will sign kovelev, and if that fails Murray or someone else (hopefully not selany unless its cheap). Other than that he will let the kids move on up and make the team.

    GO HABS GO

  8. habs_punk says:

    ya…. i have to say that i agree with almost nothing in this article.

    quintal has been solid for montreal, but we have to give the youngsters some more playing time

    koivu has been incredible as montreal’s captain. heck, he had worse injuries than thornton and led the playoffs in scoring before montreal was eliminated. not to mention, do you really think that having ribeiro and lapointe on the same team is a good idea?

    ok, i agree with going with youth

    julien did an incredible job in his first full year with the habs. why would you want to get rid of him? he takes a team that wasnt even supposed to challenge for a playoff spot and turns it into a team that was challenging for home ice up until the last week of the season. he is amazing with developing the younger players, and we have a ton of younger players. getting rid of him would be a very bad move at this point.

  9. JohnnyStone says:

    Thornton to Montreal?? When was the last time those two teams traded with each other? I don’t think it even ever happened. Anyway, I would never give up Koivu for a lazy ass like Thornton.

    The bruins can keep Lapointe(traitor) also, 5 million for 10 goals????

    I think after last season, Koivu became a much better captain(the turning point was the incident with Ribeiro). I also don’t see anyone else being a captain in the canadiens lineup.

  10. greengiant says:

    While Boston trades Thornton to Montreal, Ottawa will be trading Chara to Toronto, Colorado will be trading Sakic to Detroit, and Calgary will trade Kiprusoff to Edmonton.

  11. DandoEagle says:

    great article!!

    quintal is souray’s partner and you will likely see his play fade now with out him there to cover up all his mistakes.

    i couldnt agree more than to finally get a real leader in Thornton and get rid of that liability in Koivu. he is always hurt, cause problems in the dressing room arguing with likely their best player for years to come in Ribiero and he just doesnt bring more in the playoffs. with BOnk and thornton they would have two big centres that will cause problems in the playoffs.

    and i am really sick of julien as coach. he made some bonehead mistakes just like therrien and now they reward it again. big mistake. jarvis or even bring back tremblay who will be a better coach now after working under lemaire would be much better choices.

  12. HaliHab says:

    This article is insulting. The person who wrote this is not a habs fan. I wasn’t even going to honor this waste of print with a reply but it is too infuriating to ignore. Listen up guy:

    A- The one thing I’ll (half) agree with is that Quintal WAS a valued defenseman. WAS. You’re talking about bringing up young talent but can’t even part with a man who simply can’t keep up in the NHL any longer. Forget his displacement in the playoffs, this fact was evident half way through the regular season. Montreal is looking to get better on the blueline and undoubtedly will after breakout years from Komisarek, Souray and Bouillon and with the competition of Hainsey and the underrated François Beauchemin.

    B- Don’t dog Rivet, straight up. Don’t think for a minute this guy is not a leader. No one fought harder to persevere through early season troubles. You want leadership: when developing Markov, who did they pair him with? How about Bouillon? and then Komisarek? Its no coincidence, this guy is experienced and a great leader. He’s stay at home and I see him paired with yet another developing offensive-minded NHLer this year, Hainsey or Beauchemin. Oh and by the way, Brisebois has an A already, attentive aren’t we…

    C- Don’t think for a minute that youth development is not first and foremost on the minds of Habs management. Do you suggest they are ignorant to the number 1 ranked farm system in the NHL. I don’t know that Edmonton provides an effective model for developing youth. Have they won the Stanley Cup recently, have they made playoffs? Team chemistry is one thing, but these guys don’t have to be childhood sweethearts.

    D- Did you watch the playoffs last year? How dare you suggest Koivu isn’t a leader. A Leaf’s fan would tell you this guy’s got heart. You think the Bruins fans want Koivu- hardly, they hate the guy. He has single handedly led the destruction of 2 of the most promising seasons in their recent history. Oh, yeah and picking up a bluechip-superstar center within the division- that happens frequently- then we’ll just grab Sundin and Marian Hossa too, hell I bet they’ll practically give them to us…

    E- If I ever here Dagenais refered to as the future of the franchise by someone with a clue I’ll puke. This guy was a rental player, he scored some goals and helped out the way he knows how and that is certainly deserving of a small degree of gratitude and appreciation. However you don’t build anything around this guy. I think the days of Riberio and Dags combining for hundreds of points are over my friend. Quick Dags shoot, shoot man!

    F- The verdict is still out on Ward; I love this guy! He’s a legitamate NHL role player *IF* he can stay healthy. Someone tell ‘Winnipegman’ here that just because you score in the AHL doesn’t mean your meant to do it in the NHL.

    Fa- How about acknowledging some of Montreals real young talent- you mentioned Dags and Ward before Ribeiro, Komesarik and Ryder.

    G- Send Julien back to Hamilton- that’s a demotion to simply take in stride?? The Habs JUST signed Julien to a 2 year contract. So buddy, now Julien IS a ‘Gainey’ coach. Pay attention, learn something and you’ll see the same value and ability in this guy that Gainey has. Just ’cause he looks like Bill Dotrieve doesn’t mean he’s an idiot.

    H- Agreed, Bonk was a great move- no suprise we drafted a similar BIG ‘Jason Arnott’ type center in the first round to replace Bonk when he expires. (I say Jason Arnott because Gainey was responsible for building the team in Dallas, and oh yeah, winning the Cup too.)

    I- Garon is not necessarily a career backup. Tough to lose him but it was inevitable, we’ve got Theo (who will respond brilliantly to the lack of pressure). Danis looks like a Garon in the making anyway.

    Man you spend so much time ripping up this garbage that you don’t have time for legitimate suggestions- its just not fair.

    Ah, hell…

    Listen, hope I’m not being too, too hard, gotta appreciate the misled enthusiasm. Ya just need to brush up son. This is a great website, the best: http://www.habsworld.net/index.php

    Peace and Gyro Grease…

    ps. I am an oft critic of Pierre Dagenais (for obvious reasons) BUT I will say that it is incredibly impressive to see him swallow his pride, show up and work his ass of at the Canadiens prospect camp along side many players 5-8 years younger, many of which won’t get a sniff of the NHL. He’s got one hell of a hill to climb but unless the Habs make a real suprise signing to play with Ribs and Ryder, this guy will likely earn a chance at having his spot back.

  13. HaliHab says:

    Get a clue son…

  14. Lint07 says:

    forget Thornton to Montréal, both teams NEVER trade with each other (except the Weinrich for Traverse deal), you won’t see the B’s send any superstar to Montréal in your lifetime… forget about it.

    One more thing, we have a young team with one of the best bunch of prospects in the entire league comin up. Julien is great to teach young players and already knows half of them after coaching the Hamilton Bulldogs. It would be incredibly stupid to change him.

    Dagenais is far from being in the future plans of the organization, whenever our core of prospects grow up to become legitimate NHL’ers, Dagenais will be let go. In fact, I was surprised to see him be resigned this year.

  15. habswinthecup-again says:

    What the hell are you smoking? If you want to write an article atleast know what you are talking about, the only thing I agreed with was about Quintal, everything else you mentioned was complete idiocy.

  16. Lint07 says:

    I didn’t see your post before posting mine.. seems like we think alike.

    I also didn’t have the courage to write as much as you because the article was wrong in so many aspects, I didn’t bother as it would’ve seemed like a waste of time… Good job, that was a very complete & accurate reply!

  17. rocket9 says:

    What Habs fan would write this stuff, Koivu has been through alot of stuff, I feel he is a great captain.The Bonk deal was a good move, Garon was not going to play in Montreal anytime soon, now if Habs lost Theo because they don’t sign him next year to 4 or 5 year contract worth 30-35 million, yeah then I would say bad bad move, but they will sign him if there is hockey.

    They also needed a large two-way centre they got that in Bonk. Yes I was sad to see Quintal go, because he is a solid big def. that won’t take crap and drops the gloves when needed, I feel that Komisarek can be his replacement though.

    I also think Julien is doing a great job with this team. I also put all my trust in Mr. Gainey, he absolutely knows what he is doing!

    In my opinion I don’t feel Habs are going to make any other moves, they saved some money, moved some old bodies, they will bring in the young guns and try a year and if they need help in the playoffs make a couple of moves at the deadline.

    But I would like to see them sign Kovalev, see 2 or 3 players take a pay cut such as Brisebois to keep Kovalev here. Kovalev the sniper they need.

    Sign McCarthy an enforcer they definitely need now. They also need a big presence on the blue line like a Chris Therrien?

  18. habsoverserver says:

    Thanks for saving us all the time and effort of replying to this article. One small point, Bonk is not an ‘Arnott’ type center. Playing Bonk on the third line will pretty much waste his season.

  19. nordiques100 says:

    This is one of the worst articles i have ever read.

    Quintal was benched in the playoffs for a reason, HE SUCKS!! his time is up and it is time for some new blood to take over. please dont screw hainsey and komisarek again as they deserve a shot at playing.

    please tell me you did not just say Koivu isnt much of a captain. the guy battled cancer and chronic injuries which is more than what i can say for thornton and still found ways to perservere and succeed in the playoffs. he is heroic and bleeds club du hockey canadien. so never again insult his will to win and his leadership ability. that is sickening coming from a habs fan to hear such talk. i dont even know if you are a habs fan with the way you wrote this crap.

    yes indeed play the kids, that is about all you got right but you mentioned dagger and ward as kids. pah-leeze!!! ward is no more than a 3rd liner at best and dagger probably wont be around next year after being benched in the playoffs. he is the french version of jonas hoglund. the future lies in perezhogin, kastsitsyn, hainsey, komisarek, ribiero, ryder, higgins, chipchura, locke among others yet you fail to mention them. how can you call yourself a habs fan if you dont even know who plays for them?

    julien is a good coach, and ok if there is someone better out there that you could get then sure maybe go get’em but the habs passed on hartley and martin and carbonneau so julien is what they have and he did a pretty good job so far. he has alot of these guys in hamilton so he knows them and knows what they can do. i take it you are not a gainey fan as you seem to question his intelligence after all he is the one who gave julien the extension. why the hell would he do that if he wasnt his guy? open your damn eyes man and see what the hell is going on.

    these moves would set them back 11 more years if that were to happen. so get your head out of your ass. who the hell are you??? reggie houle????

  20. kicksave856 says:

    Hey, don’t take this the wrong way because it isn’t meant to be anything but info.

    Besides, I like the Canadiens.

    But, I am a Flyers fan and I had to watch Therien every night for almost 10 years.

    Therien is a turnstile. He’s slow, makes bad decisions with the puck, and when he goes into a “slump” these bad plays and giveaways can come in bunches.

    We were all amazed at watching the Flyers keep this guy for as long as they did (I believe he may have had a contract that made him unattractive to other teams).

    Therien seems like a nice guy and all, but he’s not a top defenseman in this league. You have to remember he played alongside a pretty good defenseman who could help hide a lot of his mistakes. I believe you guys know who I am talking about…

  21. kicksave856 says:

    I concur. I don’t like to rip people’s opinions, and I am all the way down here in New Jersey, but even I thought most of this “letter to Mr. Gainey” was a bit absurd.

    I also like to see youthful enthusiasm, and everyone is entitled to their opinions, so I won’t try to take this guy’s head off or anything.

    Just keep rooting for your team. That’s what this is all about.

  22. kicksave856 says:

    P.S. This guy should get some credit just for his username. I miss the Winnipeg Jets terribly (no, that’s not a joke- I miss the Nordiques pretty bad too- I’m just a hockey fan, what can I say?).

  23. kicksave856 says:

    I also heard that the Flyers were actively trying to trade Preems, JR, and Gagne to the Rangers for Eric Lindros and a bottle of Excedrin Migraine until the Rangers ruined everything by getting rid of Lindros.

    *You do know we’re all going to H-E-Doublehockeysticks for carrying on this long and ripping this poor guy’s post so bad, right? I actually feel bad, but couldn’t resist.*

  24. AfroCon says:

    Let’s hope for Montreal that Bonk will have the same rejuvenation that Kovalev had when he got here…

  25. OldNord says:

    By chance I’ve seen a great Bérurier Noir show tonight because I would ***** your shitty article…maybe tomorrow.

  26. Lint07 says:

    Where exactly in Québec city do you live?

    I’m livin right beside Ol’ Québec, in the “lower city” (Basse-Ville!).

    Was the show any good? I used to listen a bit to BN when I was a young kid but didn’t bother to go last night… I was pissed to miss Tryo & Violent Femmes friday and saturday though.

  27. wayne2 says:

    What planet are you from.Thornton+Lapointe for

    Koivu+Hossa+Bulis+1st round pick.Hossa is unprooven has potential but thats it,Koivu is always

    hurt,Bulis is a little unstable and 1st rounders are

    not necessarely that good(Daigle,Falloon as examples).If you want Thornton you`ll have to give something like Ribeiro+Komisarek+Hossa+ a

    high pick,or something close to that.Thornton is a

    franchise player+power forward+playmaker and

    still young so you have to give a lot to receive a lot.

  28. simplyhabby says:

    Huh?

    I really like Quintal but today’s NHL requires a mobile defense corps that can play 2 ways. As much as I like the leadership of Quintal and the toughness he brings, he is getting old and we needed to bring in more youth for the D-corps. This move also allows the possibilty of a trade to bring this infusion that we need.

    Size upfront has been a problem for the Habs for years but Thorton will not come to Montreal unless we get him from another team our divisional rival the Bruins trade him too. Do you also really think that Lapointe would really want to play on Ribs wing after what happened in the playoffs? Ribs has to keep his head up everytime he plays the B’s this year.

    How can you say that Koivu does not deserve the captaincy? Were you one of those fans that booed the guy for putting Ribs in his place? The guy lead in points through the second round of the playoffs. He steps it up when required. He is small but plays with a lot of heart and determination. KOIVU IS OUR BEST PLAYER OUTSIDE OF THEO!

    Dagenais showed some brilliance but really lacks consistency. He needs to use his size more and GET IN FRONT! Personally, I think he is the weak link on the Ribs, Ryder line and needs to be replaced with a real power forward. Ward i do agree with you. He is a hard worker, a great PK guy and hopefully develops some scoring abilties to make him an excellent 3rd liner.

    What is realy wrong with Julien? he is doing a fantastic job, he is well respected around the league and he has Gainey’s thumbs up! If you like Gainey so much then rely on his trust in Julien.

    Interesting take on the habs though!

  29. srmobile says:

    I know I’m going to stir up some stuff with this, does Koivu deserve to wear the big C, YES… But I personaly think that he has let his game slide over the past couple of years. Yes he had a battle with cancer and he came back, but if you watch him he’s a big time slacker.

    He hasent shown us his determination that he’s known for in a while, ie: skating circles around the oposition, twisting and turning behind the net like he used to do and to top it all off, several times during the playoffs and countless times during the regular season, he just stops skating when someone from the other team is going in on goal. Sometimes it has lead to a direct goal. If your going to be a leader, you must lead by example. If the players see there captain fighting tooth and nail to prevent a goal it will motivate them to do the same.

    Yes he deserves a C, but I dont think he belongs in Montreal anymore. Will he be traded, probs not, I keep seing Comercials on TV with Gainey endorsing the Saku Koivu foundation.

    I know I’m going to stir some of you the wrong way, but I’m sure you can remember adleast 1 instence when Koivu just stoped skating when you know his speed would alow him to make a diffrence in the play.

  30. Tops04 says:

    I bet Montreal would end up like Edmonton doing everything that you mentioned. And who wouldn’t want to be like Edmonton, perennial cup winners that they are. Its hard to say that Edmonton is a model franchise anymore with other small market teams actually succeeding. But apart from overrating the way Edmonton is run, there are many confusing thoughts in your post.

    First off, Quintal leaving is surely a good thing. If the youngsters want a mentor, maybe they can look to Rivet or Souray.

    Secondly, why should Brisebois be rewarded for the boos he endured. That would amount to rewarding him for his poor play while he was being booed. And don’t think the boos have stopped because Brisebois’ play is on another plane now. It’s just easier to stomach without Traverse around.

    Adding size to the lineup is a bit cliche don’t you think. I mean Dagenais is 6’5″ and would not make my lineup. Constantly overlooked are the players that play big, yet are small (i.e., Koivu, Bouillon), while Ward never hit till the playoffs and Dagenais still hasn’t. While Thornton is big, it looked like that was all he had to offer in last year’s playoffs. He’s no Koivu now, and while he’s still young, who knows if he’ll ever be as effective as Lindros once was. Lapointe would be OK, but we already have 10 players better than him and for less than his 5 million a year.

    Saying Koivu does not deserve to be captain is out of line. He epitomizes a captain, leading by superb example. He can elevate his play like few I have seen before. He deserves it more than anyone.

    In response, to your call for more responsibility to the youngsters, I agree. But lets not forget that last year was an amazing turnaround from the Habs usual way of doing things. Ribeiro played tons, and Ryder was on the first line. Ward played all year. Dagenais half the year. Komisarek saw lots of ice time too. The plan for this year is probably to add Hainsey intot the mix. And they are probably hoping for Plekanec, Hossa or Higgins to make it.

    Lastly, I think you misunderstand Claude Julien’s position. By leaving him to coach last year, he bacame Gainey’s coach. Doug Jarvis would be a worthy candidate, but why supplant someone who knows the pressure of coaching in Montreal with someone who only knows the pressure of playing here. I don’t think Julien needs to go, and his value will be shown even more this year as he is allowed to coach more and more of the players he coached in Hamilton.

  31. nelsog says:

    This is probably the worst article I have ever read on this site. I can’t see how anybody could possible agree with any one of the points made. With that said I’ll keep my post quick as everyone else has pretty much covered everything already.

    Huet is a career backup not Garon. Quintal is old and would not have played as the 7th D man. Brisebois was the alternate during the dismal 02-03 year and is not likely to want or get the honor again after almost being booed out of the city. Give up the heart of Koivu and a handful of young talent for that package is just plain stupid and unrealistic. Teams don’t usually trade premier players to Divisional rivals and Beantown and Montreal never trade to each other. Koivu took a ton of heat for the scuffle with Ribiero this year but still put up creditable stats and led the way for the Habs in the playoffs. A Captain pulling rank on Ribiero is exactly what he needs since he’s still a *****y punk who can learn alot from Koivu before he becomes a one of the great players in the league. Thornton is a great captain only in hockeyhead’s mind while Koivu is a great captain.

    Keep dreaming about the PittPens moving to Winnipeg and learn a bit more about the Habs before writing another article.

  32. parrisduffus says:

    He doesn’t speak for all habs fan. I could tell you most habs fan would not take Thornton for Koivu straight up.

  33. parrisduffus says:

    How many habs game did you watch this year? Most habs fan wath probably 70-82 regular season games and all playoff games. If you fall into that category you have an opinion but if you watched 220 or less don’t even go near Koivu.

  34. Leafs_Expert_ says:

    Montreal doesnt play good

  35. OldNord says:

    I don’t live in Québec city. Excepting the torrential rain (the site was really sh_itty after that), the BxN show was excellent. Next saturday is Mononc’Serge and Anonymus, l’Académie du Massacre, that will be a good one too.

  36. Saku11Habs says:

    “Quintal was the heart and soul of the D in Montreal for the past three years!”

    Hardly…Stephane Quintal was just a fill-in while Hainsey got more play time in Hamilton

    “A package that would attract the Bruins interest in Thorton and Lapointe could be Koivu, Hossa, Bulis and a First rounder”

    Did you not see how Joe Thornton handled his injuries during the playoffs compared to injuries sustained by Saku Koivu. Clearly Saku played his heart out with some pretty bad injuries while Joe just complained about being hurt….

    And Lapointe is quite simply an overpaid joke…..A first round pick given for these guys would be a waste

    “Julien is a decent coach but he is not a Bob Gainey coach, promote Doug Jarvis (who understands the pressure of PLAYING in Montreal) and return Julien to Hamilton”

    The problem her is in bold text. Julien has experience with the pressures of coaching at all levels and with a full year under his belt in Montreal can work with the younger players to develop them. Doug Jarvis can handle the pressure of playing but to jump into coaching this team would only be a step in the wrong direction. Jarvis is learning the ropes for what will ultimately be a head coaching job someday while in Hamilton. Julien showed that he can coach this team and be very effective with young talent. He deserves his contract extension ten-fold

    As for Bonk being a steal? Bonk can help this team but only if he finally ends his 10 year underacheiving streak. 20 goals a year isn’t exactly what Montreal needs. They need his size. That is why Ottawa gave him away basically to LA. Garon could be a number 1 goaltender in this league given an opportunity. By far not a steal but the trade can help this team.

  37. Lint07 says:

    yep, I wanted to go there but unfortunately I have to make a choice and I’ll go to Montréal (Repentigny) instead see ”Streetlight Manifesto” & ”Big D And The Kids Table”.

    too bad.

  38. Habfan1234 says:

    Simply put, Quintal had to go. His valiant but ineffectual play towards the end of the season did not endear him to management. One of Hainsey, who looked good last year in Hamilton, and Beuchemin (sp?) will be in the top 6.

    I hate Deganais and see no prospect for improvement within him. If not for his braincramp this spot in the lineup would have gone to Alexander Perezhogin but we have to wait another year for that to happen.

    Julien is a great coach who reminds me of Jacques Martin, and that has the ability to develope young players (e.g., Ryder, Riberio, and now Komisarek). Why would he leave when he improved the team by 16 points and reduced their GAA by .5. Barring some tragic event or unbelievable awful play from the team next season he is staying for awhile. Unlike the past coaches the Habs have gotten he has experience at every level and most importantly, he has a winning tradition with him that will help the team to achieve grteatness in the not to distant future.

    I would not trade Koivu. He is the heart and soul of the Canadiens who has outplayed Joe Thornton in the playoffs twice. And do not give me the excuse that Thornton was injured because in 2001-2002 Saku had to face something even worse, cancer, and he was able to have an effective playoff run.

    The trading of Graon for Bonk and Huet was a good move because it addressed the lack of size up the middle for the Canadiens. They now have a checking centre that has the capabilities to play the game effectively at both ends of the rink.

    I see four spots on the roster that need addressing. Two are minor and two are major:

    1. They need to sign a top-quality winger to play with Koivu and that will help elevate Zednik’s game. The player needs to have a knack for the net. ONE of these three need to be signed to play in that position: in order, Kovalev, Selanne, and Demitra. I think Kovalev will be resigned to a long-term deal.

    2. A second line winger to play with Ribs and Ryder. Deganais should be with Hamilton and Higgins needs another year of seasoning. The player that I would want would be Rucinsky because of his versatility. This contract should be a one year contract with a two-year option. This transaction should be done with the intention that Perezhogin will be battling for this roster spot. If he is ready in two years than the Habs can release him-Rucinsky-without any worries. The option years allow the Habs to view his (Perezhogin) development and see if he is ready to play.

    3. A winger to play with Bulis and Bonk. I would put in that position Marcel Hossa to see if Bonk can get him out of his dormancy and make him an effective two way player with an ability to maybe become one of the best tier two talents in the NHL (second-line player). Hossa has it in him but needs someone to unlock his talent. If managment feels that Hossa cannot do it than they should go out and sign Todd Harvey.

    4. Resign Jim Dowd to be the fourth line centre. He was effective in whatever role was asked of him late last season and into the playoffs. His experience will help Montreal transition from an older team with players that are ineffectual to a group of players that are in their prime.

    Here then would be the Habs lineup on opening night, whenver that is:

    Zednik-Koivu-Kovalev

    Ryder-Ribs-Rucinsky

    Bulis-Bonk-Hossa (Harvey?)

    Begin-Dowd-Ward

    Deganais

    Souray-Komisarek

    Briesbois-Markov

    Rivet-Hainsey

    Boullion

    Beuchemin

    Dykhuis

    Theo

    Huet

    Danis

  39. WinnepegJets1992 says:

    Personally I didn’t think everything I stated was that ludicrous as these are my personal reflections and my OWN opinion..but these are moves I would like to see made as I am a season ticket holder of the Canadiens.

    I don’t recall anywhere in my post stating that I prefer Riberio over Koivu as Captain or anything ridiculous like that..the only reason Ribeiro came out and had a great year this year..he’s playing for a new contract.

    Brisebois doesn’t have a letter on his shirt..if you had paid notice during the playoffs last year the A’s belonged to Zednik and Quintal and when Quintal was out of the lineup the A was on Rivet. At my last look Brisebois is now the only Hab to have won a cup and played like he KNEW how to win the cup in the playoffs..so why not reward him?

    Julien had a decent year this year so did Michel Therrien once..remember him..the guy who cost Canada a chance to see the Montreal Canadiens vs. Toronto Maple Leafs playoff series three years ago? Julien is alot like Therrien in that he had some huge success in junior and at the minor pro level but one “decent” season doesn’t make you a great coach..wait until the Habs have a 15 game winless skid this year and we’ll see who the blame lands on.

    I was only using Dagenais as an example as he was the first person who came to mind..but can anyone argue that Jason Ward doesn’t belong on the roster on a higher line? If so step up and show your arguements.

    Mathieu Garon HAS been a career backup so far in his time in Montreal and would have been the Backup forever if Montreal had kept him on board. Hence the “career backup” label.

    Koivu got the nod as captain as he was the most popular player in Montreal at the time..this team hasn’t had a good captain since we traded Muller to the Islanders for pete’s sake. If Koivu had not been the most popular player in Montreal at the time the C would have went to Corson and then to Quintal..again if you can argue that fact please step up to the Taco stand.

    If you didn’t notice Martin Lapointe seems to play his best hockey when he plays in The Phone Booth and the first rounder in question isn’t necessarily the 2005 pick I figure if you can land a gritty veteran player of Quebecois decent to play in Montreal what is the problem? Hell Boston may even eat some of his salary.

    If you think Koivu is a better hockey player then Thorton you must be drinking..though I agree that Koivu would never fit in with Boston as he has been the giant slayer against them the past two times they have met in the playoffs.

    Hossa is no longer a top prospect either as he has had AMPLE opportunity to play in Montreal and can’t bring his Minor Pro scoring or Size to the lineup..it’s great to have good farm players but if you can turn those farm players into solid NHL players then do so..I bet these are the same people who complained about trading Balej for Kovalev.

    And who can argue with building a team like the Oilers? The Oilers have the potential to be just like the Tampa Bay Lightning..they are built the same way and play a similar game..and if they resign Nedved and can get Conklin and Markkanen to play great hockey there is no reason to believe that the Oilers won’t pull out a season similar to what the Flames had this season…that’s not the point to this as this was an article about the Montreal Canadiens.

    Great to see the debate against my thoughts though keep the positive comments coming :)

  40. kicksave856 says:

    Wait, you guys traded Muller to the Islanders and all you got back was “pete’s sake”?

    That sound’s like a terrible trade.

    Hey, man. We’re just messing around with you. I mean, I still don’t think anyone’s in agreement with much of what you wrote, but it’s your opinion. You’re entitled to that.

  41. rojoke says:

    Julien is alot like Therrien in that he had some huge success in junior and at the minor pro level but one “decent” season doesn’t make you a great coach..wait until the Habs have a 15 game winless skid this year and we’ll see who the blame lands on.

    And just what type of pro success has coach Doug Jarvis had at the NHL level? Dougie coached a great team in Hamilton this season, but he too fell short of the goal. In fact, he got swept. Will he be better for the experience? Absolutely. Plus, there’s the fact that, should your wish come true, Jarvis would be the fourth coach in what, nine or ten years? It’s difficult to construct any kind of team when the coach’s office door has a different name on it every two years. And don’t discount the fact that Julien took a team into the playoffs that most of the media had pegged as a lottery pick, and a high lottery pick.

    Koivu got the nod as captain as he was the most popular player in Montreal at the time.

    No, Koivu got the nod as captain because the players voted him captain, a tradition that the team has held to since I began following the team in the early 70’s. And that’s the best way to choose a captain. Let the players do it, not management.

  42. OldNord says:

    You had good points, but Rucinsky??? He was the Russ Courtnall at the end of the ’90s for them. Seriously, I think Kastitsyn can take the 2nd line role next year.

  43. Tops04 says:

    Whoa,

    You are a season ticket holder and you think that Jason Ward should be on one of the top two lines? Mayb eit is you who has been drinking. If Hossa is no longer a top prospect, then Ward no longer has any potential to improve at all. The man tries his heart out, anyone can see that, and is a valuable 4th/sometimes 3rd line player, but he has no talent.

    Indulge me if you will. Watch Jason ward chase the puck around the net at the next Habs game you go to. He always, without fail, goes around the wrong side of the net. This is a severe lack of talent in my regard. It shows he can’t read the game. All you have to do is look at the difference between him and Michael Ryder to see what the difference between an up and coming top 2 line player and a career grinder is.

    I hope that Jason Ward continues to work on his skating and shot-blocking, because he can be a good body checker, pressurer. But he does not deserve a shot at the second line. As for Dagenais he has more talent than Ward, but doesn’t seem to care to use it. No effort sometimes flies for Jagrs and Kovalevs, but not for the Dagenais’s.

    And although I could go on and on about Brisebois, I won’t. But I would rather challenge your view on Koivu. Let’s imagine Joe Thornton was 5’10”, would he be a better player than Koivu then, no change in play, force of hits, obstruction of goalie’s view, etc. I think that would be a closer debate. Joe Thornton holds the edge because the assumption is that big players are better.

    When it comes to these two players, it is a tough comparison, because they are polar opposites. Koivu leads by example, stepping up his play during adversity. Thornton often crumbles, complains and has been known to take game-costing penalties. Both are the major point-getters on their teams. And it may be a surpise that their career stats are not far off one another:

    Joe Thornton: 509GP 160G 261A 421P 0.827PPG

    Saku Koivu: 497 GP 120G 278A 398P 0.801PPG

    But now look at this, playoff stats:

    Joe Thornton: 35GP 6G 12A 18P 0.514PPG

    Saku Koivu: 40GP 13G 21A 34P 0.850PPG

    Koivu is also an excellent back-checker and shut down his first round assignment, who just happened to be Joe Thornton. Overall, at least at present Koivu is the better hockey player. I would never take him over Thornton in a hockey pool, but if I were starting a team, and I wasn’t hell bent on scoring from rebounds only I would take Koivu.

    Now there is one other factor and that is age. Joe Thornton is younger than Koivu by about 5 years I think. But that does nothing to change the argument about who is the better player. If the question was who will be the better player, then it could be a different story. However, Joe Thornton has already spoken out about being checked, man-marked, and it seems he can’t deal with it at all. His playoff numbers are probably a reflection of the fact, he doesn’t like being shadowed by a tenacious checker. That is yet to be seen.

    Lastly, I stand by what I said about Edmonton. Edmonton do not have a single player that compares to Brad Richards, Martin St. Louis or Vincent Lecavalier. in fact if Edmonton wanted to do it right, they would go the Tampa route and flat out suck for 5 seasons and get some of those high draft picks that could really help. Right now they are fighting to be middle of the pack, even with an overrated Nedved.

  44. Rico420 says:

    Wow for being a Habs fan (and a season ticket holder) you don’t seem to have a very good grasp on what is good for the team in the next five years.

    The Bruins would never trade Thorton to an Eastern conference team let alone the Habs, if Thorton does get dealt it will be to the LA Kings or Detroit Red Wings..I’m leaning towards the Kings.

    Julien is the best coach Montreal has had since Alain Vigneault and Vigneault was a casualty because he was part of the Houle Era. Julien can look forward to a good career in Montreal as he has been rewarded by Bob Gainey and is now under leadership who won’t just make deals for small fast players or sign free agents because they are from la Belle Province.

    Ten moves that the Canadiens need to make to get back to the playoffs would really be.

    1) Stay the course

    2) Stay the course

    3) Stay the course

    4) Stay the course

    5) Resign Kovalev or someone like Kovalev

    6) Stay the course

    7) Stay the course

    8) Play Huet for 25 games to give Theo a good rest

    9) Stay the course

    10) Deal for Sidney Crosby (hahaha)

    I do agree that Jason Ward can handle a bigger role with the team..who knows Ward could develope into a Mike McPhee type player which the Canadiens haven’t had since well..Mike McPhee. I would have said Carboneau but there is no way he will ever be like Guy.

    Things are really looking up in Montreal guys, we may only be a few pieces of a puzzle away from being a team like the Senators and Leafs (meaning we’ll challenge for the division every season) and the way to get there isn’t to argue that Koivu isn’t a good leader (as he is the BEST captain in Canada for God Sakes (it’s close between him and Sundin) he’s the best choice for the C in Montreal and should be given the honour of retiring as a member of the Habs I don’t want to see him traded simply for the reason Bob McKenzie will dig up the “Curse of the C” and point out that the Canadiens have traded what is now SEVEN of their previous SEVEN Captains.

    I’m not so sure that the team votes for the Captain though all the time as it seems to me Pierre Turgeon wasn’t the best choice for a captain but whatever.

    As for Brisebois being rewarded..the guy played 11 great hockey games this season..and even in those 11 games he showed signs of being lazy, though the guy who praised Rivet might have to remember that Rivet helped cause an OT game in Montrela against Boston when he shot the puck off the glass not down the ice towards the empty net..though I’m not going to argue that Rivet is not a leader I watched him play junior in Kingston and he showed signs of Leadership then.

    I really hope Gainey doesn’t make any drastic changes we don’t need to see any more Rejean Houle moves like Zednik to the Florida Panthers for Huselius.

  45. habs_punk says:

    i consider myself a true habs fan, but i did not watch near 70 games this season. why is that? because i only got about 5-10 on tv where i live. damn toronto maple leafs.

    i did watch every game in the playoffs though

  46. srmobile says:

    Dude, Im going to go there.. FYI I watched prety much every game and I wasent one of those fans that came out of the woodwork when we made the playoffs. I went to 8 regular season games and was in the Molson Ex Section, you know where the real fans are.

    The only games I missed were cuz the lady friend was sick of watching hockey.

    Anyway, I stick by what I said.. His game isint what it was and it just bothers me to no end when someone doesent hustle to take the puck off of someone who’s skating towards our net when you he’s capable of making a diffrence.

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