What should Canadiens do with No. 3 pick?

With the draft coming up a week from Friday, there’s a lively debate over whether the Canadiens should try to move up – or down – from their No. 3 position.

Given the talent available this year, No. 3 appears to be a good spot. While there are a handful of players with the potential to be useful NHL players, there’s no Sidney Crosby, no Evgeni Malkin. Nail Yakupov has emerged as the consensus No. 1 prospect, but there’s a case to be made that defenceman Ryan Murray is closer to play in the NHL or that Alexander Galchenyuk would have been No. 1 if he hadn’t been injured.

Because there is little to choose from among the top five prospects, there seems little reason to contemplate giving up an asset to move up.

There might be more of an argument to be made for trading the pick or moving down. But the only way that makes sense is if the Canadiens get an established NHL player in return.

There is some precedent for this route, but it falls into the you-should-learn-from-your-mistakes category.

In 2008, the Canadiens might have had a shot at John Carlson, Tyler Ennis or Justin Schultz, but they traded their first-round puck to Calgary for Alex Tanguay. He was so underwhelming as a Canadien that general manager Bob Gainey let him go after one season.

No matter which way the Canadiens go, the one thing they shouldn’t do is trade defenceman P.K. Subban. I’m sure this idea isn’t being thrown around when Marc Bergevin assembles his braintrust, but the idea seems to have some traction on fan websites and there are a few folks in the media who feel this would be a better team without Subban.


51 Responses to What should Canadiens do with No. 3 pick?

  1. reinjosh says:

    They have a lot of options.

    Galchenyuk, Murray or Forsberg should be there three potential choices.

    Galchenyuk is the big center they need similar to the Leafs.

    Murray is the number 1 steady guy that would be a perfect partner for Subban. Yes they have lots of potential top 4 dman in the cupboards, but none like Murray. He’d be a solid pick.

    Forsberg – He would give them a huge wing core with Cole and Pacioretty as well. He’d have the most offensive potential of any of them. He might be a safer bet than Galchenyuk too.

    Personally I think that with Desharnais, Eller and Leblanc all NHL ready and all looking like they have pretty decent potential, that Montreal goes with a winger or a dman.

    • TimTheBone says:

      Only thing is I’m not convinced with leblanc as a centerman… He seems suited fine for the wing… And eller is a decent #2 center…. Solid #3 !!…. So if we got a top center like galchenyuk or grigs… It may be even better than say a forsberg….

      Let’s say everyone develops the way they should…

      Pacioretty desharnais Cole
      Leblanc galchenyuk/grigirenko gallagher

      Looks alright …(if potential is reached)…… I’m thinking a free agent or two is needed …but in 3-4 years that line-up may be a good one

    • lafleur10 says:

      desharnais is small eller is a projected 2-3 line center and leblanc could be a ggod top 2 center but he’s going to play wing so we’ll just our pick a pick galchenyuk at 3!

    • puckrunner says:

      I can pretty much bet that Galchenyuk may not be around @3.Either way the Habs are in a good position.

  2. Take.best.player.available.

  3. Ryrad8 says:

    This is why i liked the Leafs trading picks with the habs, the habs get a little something extra and pick at no. 5. The worst case scenario is that all the forwards are picked by 5 and they have to choose Murray. but one of the Oilers, Isles, or Blue Jackets will take Murray still leaving a big center man.

  4. LN91 says:

    EXACTLY TIM. WOW, these Leaf fans do not understand that concept. You don’t take the slim pickings, you take the player you want and think is the best.

    You don’t hope, you use your scouts to determine who is the best…And you gun for that player if its the Leafs or Habs.

  5. toronto77 says:

    I still do not understand the need for Montreal to trade the no.3 pick? Montreal and Toronto, two divisional rivals both struggling and in the rebuilding process should be scratching and clawing each other to grab Galchenyuk. Montreal shouldn’t get to cocky with that pick. Just keep it and grab that guy that can give you a huge boost over your divisional rival.

    Unless!! Montreal really wants Grigorenko, but tells Toronto that they are going after Galchenyuk and see if Toronto is wiling to trade up. Kind of sneaky, but I don’t see any other reason Montreal would trade down. In the end Montreal gets the player they wanted all along and a little something extra.

    • lafleur10 says:

      the player really want is galchenyuk not grigorenko however if we do get grigorenko because galchenyuk goes before we pick we’ll have a good 1 either way

      • mojo19 says:

        Grigorenko could just as easily end up being the better player. If draft history has taught us anything, its that you can’t predict these things too accurately.

        • reinjosh says:

          Agreed. A ton of scouts are saying he’s right up there with Yakupov in terms of talent, he just has apparent character issues.

          However scouts have mentioned while it’s an issue, it’s not a huge one.


          I mean if Frattin can go from getting kicked of his NCAA team to being an AHL playoff stud, and Grabo can go from Montreal entitled Russian to one of our hardest working players, Grigorenko’s issues can’t be the end of the world.

          • Gambo says:

            good point with Grabovski and Frattin, they both changed and became much better players because of it hen they came to Toronto.

            This will sound really biased as a leaf fan but I think if Grigorenko goes to Edmonton or Toronto his work ethic won’t be an issue but if he ends up in Montreal or Columbus his work ethic will struggle and he wont become as good as he can.

            • Gambo says:

              Mind you, Frattin changed his ways in his senior year at College. But still, players can change.

            • lafleur10 says:

              the habs are better at developing prospects than the leafs are the leafs have had more busts lately than the habs have so if grigorenko goes to the leafs his chances of being a bust will increase dramatically

              • Gambo says:

                Oh right, Montreal has drafted 1 player, Louis Leblanc, who has actually played games in the NHL since the 2008 draft. Oh and he has only played 42 games, recording 10 points. 4 years of drafting and only 1 player has played games in the NHL.

                The leafs have only had 3 but they have a farm team filled with draft picks from 2008-now and they are all looking really good.

                • lafleur10 says:

                  carey price,p.k. subban,louis leblanc,breandan gallagher jared tinordi,nathan beaulieu,danny kristo,alexei ememlin and more! if yours are looking so good why have you sucked for the past 7 years the only team that hasn’t made the playoffs since the lockout so i think you had better have a look at what the habs have drafted they are so far ahead of the leafs

                  • Gambo says:

                    Emelin was 2004, Carey Price was 2005, Subban was 2007. The other players, other than Leblanc who like I said has only played 42 games, have never played in the NHL. It’s not that the leafs are necessarily bad at drafting it’s that JFJ traded away every fucking draft pick the leafs ever had.

                    I was talking about since 2008, not 2004.

  6. dumbassdoorman says:

    Even though I am a leaf fan truth be told, I hope Mtl & the leafs each get an impact player. It hurts to see the two proudest and most storied franchises in NHL history, sucking the hind tit. On that note I would prefer Gal as I believe and have long stated he is the best player in the draft.

    • lafleur10 says:

      one of the them is the most storied and proudest franchise the other 1 not so much,but yeah i here you i think galchenyuk will be the best player taken in the draft when it’s all said and done

      • dumbassdoorman says:

        See you just can’t not be the douche, eh? You get someone who is a fan, just trying to have a hockey discussion and there is you having to screw it all up…lol

  7. TimTheBone says:

    I really feel the nhl should do away with divisions… Keep two basic conferences to split regular season games … Then for playoff seeding just rank the top teams 1 through 16……

    1 vs 16
    2 vs 15
    3 vs 14

    And so forth…. This way it makes ANY match up a possibility….. A Montreal Toronto Stanley cup final could be a possible event…. Who gives a Damn about east and west champions….. The fact that east and west teams rarely play against ewchothet over a season makes for a consistently emotionless finals…. You never see the battles in the finals like you see in a Vancouver Chicago series… Or a rangers devils series…. Or a philly Pittsburgh series…. It’s less exciting and i for one would love to see a rivalry series in a Stanley cup final

    • Ryrad8 says:

      I completely agree with you, the league did propose a new format early in the year, where it could be any two playoff teams in the final, but the NHLPA didn’t approve it.

    • Jay says:

      i am all for that kind of Playoff seeding it would be better then now i think because sometime the 3rd time in each conference are taking a spot in the playoff and they don’t deserve it but just because they won their division they get seeded at the position

    • JoelLeafs says:

      I like the idea of keeping the 1v8 style for the first round, but re-seeding all the remaining 8 teams in the second round based on points, not conference. This would allow any teams to potentially meet and have more match-ups with teams that don’t know each other. Though I must admit there is something nice about rivals going head to head in the first three rounds then two teams that don’t know each other playing for the cup.

  8. Jay says:

    I really think that Montreal should try to make a trade with The Blue Jackets Columbus to get second and third pick and get Ryan Murray Everett(WHL) Defence man(46 games played – 9goals-22assists-31 points)and then for the third pick you choose Mikhail Grigorenko played for Quebec Rempart(QMJHL) Centre (59 game played -40goals -45assists-85 points) i would like to know what people think about this and if it can happen what would the trade be?

    • Gambo says:

      I agree with you about getting Murray, I think he is being over looked by Montreal fans, him and Subban would be a stellar top 2 down the road. Murray should be able to play the right type of style to let Subban take those chances.

  9. Jay says:

    Montreal need to go get players like Paul Gaustad and Zenon Konopka and PA Parenteau and buy out or trade Scott Gomez and maybe even trade Andrei Markov to be able to go get a decent Defence man like Ryan Suter even if i hear people say that Montreal should try to get Zach Parise they are wrong because he will never come to montreal he will either go to the Rangers or the wild or LA my first guess would the Los Angeles Kings

  10. TimTheBone says:

    I’m thinking the only players Columbus would want in a deal for the 2nd overall would be Pacioretty, Subban,….who I’d not want to move at all…

    Maybe a deal involving plekanec could work…. Would need some more inventive for them though…. Perhaps take some salary back and throw in a good prospect and bottom six forward…

    What do people think of something like this…

    MTL: 2nd overall, RJ Umberger

    CLB: Tomas Plekanec, Louis Leblanc, 32nd overall pick and
    Nashville’s 2nd round pick this year

    Does that seem fair?

    Mtl could then select Ryan Murray.. And we can take galchenyuk or grigorenko…… Orrrrrr

    Go all forwards and select galchenyuk/grigorenko… And forsberg….

    Thoughts?? What might need to be added or changed in my trade (if anything)… Keeping in mind the trade is built around plekanec… Still a young and very effective player… Just may not be room for him on our roster in the near future…

    • blaze says:

      Interesting but not enough. I like it because I think most people over look the availability of the 2nd overall pick. The first isn’t moving and realistically the only teams who would consider serious offers are the Leafs and the Blue Jackets.

      As for Columbus Nash is more than likely on his way out but even that is not a guarantee I wouldn’t be suprised to see Howson hold onto him till the deadline again if he doesnt like his offers.

      The thing is even if Columbus ditches Nash there will not be a rebuild. Absolutely not. They re-signed Prospal for a reason. They’ll likely move forward from Nash but the goal more than ever is to make the play-offs.

      They have some solid defenseman locked up for years and a few good pieces. They’ll get a great return on Nash and I think the second overall while not necissarily being shopped could most definitely be had.

      As for you trade I think Plekanec is a good start and a piece they’d be interested. I considered the Leafs making a pitch for the 2nd with a Grabovski centered deal so it`s comparable. Umberger however wouldn`t be a salary dump. Though his contract isnt the greatest it`s a non issue for Columbus. He still carries value to the team. Replacing him with Plekanec is sideways or a marginal upgrade.

      Maybe take out Nashvilles 2nd and replace it with one of Beaulieu or Tinordi. I`m not sure that might do it though. Surey you give up prospects but get bigger up the middle and can go 2-3 at the draft ala Burke. Galchenyuk-Murray/Forsberg would be a start of an off-season Id be jealous of.

      • TimTheBone says:

        Well I thought of beaulieu and tinordi but realised they have a lot of money invested in a pretty decent d-corp and I figured they would want forwards… Our forward depth quality isn’t great that’s why I included more picks…

        Umberger I realized isn’t the typical dump….. marginally better?…… Perhaps slightly better than that… Plelanec is good for 50 points with 70 point upside…. Even tho he’s only done that once, I think he could do it again…

        • dumbassdoorman says:

          No offence, but a good start yes, and good deal no. I mean if you were Howson, would you take that deal? You are trading a possible( as they are prospects)impact player for a 30 yr old perenial 50 pt guy, a couple seconds and a prospect who has yet to pan out.Comparable is, would you trade Mtl’s 3rd for say Gagner(who is younger more upside) and couple 2nds and Omark? i wouldn’t, so I think the deal has to include one of your Dman prospects as well, minimun, IMO.

          • reinjosh says:

            Yeah it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. You need a high impact player at this point and Plekanec isn’t really enough to make a big impact. He’s not making them a playoff round winning team. I honestly don’t see Montreal having anything that they would be willing to offer that would sway CBJ.

            The team is going to try and build a new future around Jack Johnson, Ryan Johansen, whoever they get with the 2nd overall and whatever return they get with the Nash trade. I don’t think a Tinordi/Beauliue deal (obviously with more) makes much sense when a Forsberg/Murray is available with so much more upside.

            I hate the quality over quantity argument, but it’s one that I think holds water here.

            • blaze says:

              For sure but they will consider all options to get to playoffs. Columbus would trade that pick outright. I doubt Howson is too concerned about a decade from now.

              Columbus fans will not tolerate another 5 year rebuild and Columbus needs some results. Galchenyuk or Forberg will both need atleast 1 more year. Then their rookie year is unlikely to be impact players. Howson doesn’t have 3 years to wait.

              • TimTheBone says:

                My thoughts exactly… He’s in the win now mindset… Hence the hefty price for nash

              • reinjosh says:

                Yeah he doesn’t but it becomes what direction do you go. Does ownership recognize the reasons to go and build a properly competitive team or do they think it makes more sense to get into the playoffs soon. At this point the fans are the ones that are going to stay. They can’t possibly lose anymore.

                Even so, trading that 2nd pick still doesn’t make much sense to me. Plek isn’t helping them make the playoffs. Beauliue, while similar to Murray, isn’t stepping in right away. I honestly think they could get better value with someone younger than Pleks and with high potential.

            • TimTheBone says:

              Hey I understand but I want someone’s opinion on both of these guys who actually knows them…

              Beaulieu to Murray…

              I looked at both their junior stats and beaulieu has better stats…. Murray has the hype behind him as a fantastic player when beaulieu didnt… So where’s the discrepancies between the two…. They seem very similar… Maybe it looks like Murray is maturing faster but to me they look similar as far as the potential…

              Also neither guy has impressed me in the WJHC

              • reinjosh says:

                I think Murray is sort of a 2nd or 3rd steady defender, a guy that sort of does everything solidly but nothing spectacularly. He’s a guy that can jump into the NHL right away.

                I would think Beaulieu is similar but with maybe more offensive upside and longer development.

                And agreed, neither really impressed me at the WJC

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