What we need to succeed!

It’s the day before the free agency market! Montreal is a major buyer at this years UFA giveaway. But what do we really need? Sure we could try to go for Gomez and Yashin and Kariya, but will they lead us to the the 25 Stanley Cup? Here’s what our team looks like as of now, including our UFA’s who might leave. Now some might say we could insert Garth Murray or Aaron Downey into the (empty) spots, but (empty) signifies the lack of a solid player who will fill that spot all season barring injury.

Higgins – Koivu – Kovalev
Plekanec – Bonk – Ryder
(empty) – Begin – Johnson
(empty) – Lapierre – Latendresse
Souray – Markov
Komisarek – Streit
Bouillon – Dandenault
Now let’s subtract the players who are likely to leave. We get:
Higgins – Koivu – Kovalev
Plekanec – (empty) – Ryder
(empty) – Begin – (empty)
(empty) – Lapierre – Latendresse
(empty) – Markov
Komisarek – Streit
Bouillon – Dandenault
This is all fine and dandy, but some of these players are not playing on lines that they deserve. If we were to fine tune our lines they would look something like this:
(empty) – (empty) – Kovalev
Higgins – Koivu – Ryder
Plekanec – Begin – (empty)
Latendresse – Lapierre – Kostitsyn
(empty) – Markov
Komisarek – Streit
Bouillon – (empty)
Now just looking at this makes me cry! 2 spots on our first line…EMPTY!! Boy Bob, you need to work some miracles. Who can keep up with Kovalev and get him to be excited and play to his full potential? Who can replace Souray on our PP and hopefully do a better job of defending our side of the ice? Who has boundless energy to be able to play with Begin and Plekanec and be the greatest energy line in the NHL? Who can replace Dandenault on the third defensive line seeing that he has over-stayed his visit in Montreal. Here’s an idea…
Blake – Briere – Kovalev
Higgins – Koivu – Ryder
Plekanec – Begin – Bertuzzi
Latendresse – Lapierre – Kostitsyn
Markov – Komisarek
Sutton – Bouillon
Streit – Preissing
It’s salary time!
Available cap room: 19.7M
Ryder – 2M
Plekanec – 2M
Briere – 7M
Blake – 3.5M
Bertuzzi – 2M
Sutton – 1.5M
Preissing – 1.7M
Okay, so now that you see that we can afford all these players, let me explain why we are going to get these players. Briere and Blake are just the combination to go with Kovalev. All three are fast, speedy and quick. How else can I put it? They’ll be the fastest line in the NHL. All of them can score, Blake (69 points), Briere (95 points), and Kovalev (47 points) and that’s him being lazy. Imagine the spark he’ll get when he finds out his linemates are Briere and Blake. My mouth’s watering already!! That fixes up our team’s common and justified misconception of being a offense-lacking group. Todd Bertuzzi….now I know that there was a survey in which 80% of Montrealers did not like Bertuzzi, but no one will say anything once we get him. He may be mean, he may have lost his scoring touch, but he sure as hell hasn’t slowed down and he sure as hell hasn’t shrunk, so that leaves him as the ideal candidate for our third line. Offense covered, let’s move to defense. Komisarek is ready to take up a first line job. He’ll do well until O’Bryne or Fischer comes along. Him and Markov will be a shut-down unit and will get plenty of PP time. Markov can cover some of Souray’s offensive contributions, but we will now also have Sutton and Pressing on our second PP unit and they will provide plenty of offense. Sutton’s booming shot and Pressing’s smart passes. Sutton will also click with Bouillon allowing him to display his speed and offensive capabilities. Streit and Pressing will be a solid defensive unit. Both are a little too offensive-minded to be playing with each other, but hey…they’ll work out who gets to join the rush every shift because believe me, there is going to be a rush. With Blake/Briere/Kovalev being our team’s face. With Higgins/Koivu/Ryder providing ample scoring and leadership in the lockeroom. With Plekanec/Begin/Bertuzzi pounding and forechecking hard in the opponent’s zone. With Latendresse/Lapierre/Kostitsyn being our “goons”…HELLO LORD STANLEY!!

7 Responses to What we need to succeed!

  1. The_Dynasty says:

    Blake will get far more on the open market. Also, as much as I would like to see us get all of them, it won't happen. I think we may get Briere and Preissing, but even that might be pushing it.

  2. tonin says:
    i could see them getting brierre, preissing and sutton but betuzzi wont end up coming to montreal most likely toronto, but over all good article
  3. sanj91 says:

    Blake is a hell of a player, but he's not the main focus of attention. Montreal is aware of this. In other words, there aren't that many teams that have Jason Blake on their list. Maybe after Kariya and Smyth turn them down they might look to Blake, but if Montreal calls Blake out of genuine need for his services he will probably agree. And anyways 3.5M is about a M more than he was making last year. He'll get too be a first liner. Although I do think if we can sign Briere before Blake it will entice him even more. Nothing like playing next to Briere eh!

  4. sanj91 says:

    Just thought I'd add….the lines I've described in the article are the actual lines I have in my dynastyin NHL 07. I'm 15-0 so far! 

  5. leafssuck67 says:

    I was just thinking….plekanec is our 2nd line center isnt he? i mean thats the position he played pretty much the whole season since ribeiro left. Im not saying hes the man for the job but he did make use of the ice time and got 20 goals….

    so actually, id place him at 3rd line center, u see that guy on the PK?? and what about the guys who'll crack the line-up this year? i.e.: O'Byrne, Biron, maybe Grabovski, Chipchura…who loses their job? kostitsyn? lapierre? True there will be injuries, but we gotta give these guys ice-time if they wanna be NHL-ready. And also, theres lots of other prospects coming up….

    anyway, thats probably just me wantng the belarusian line quicker (Kostitsyn-Grabovski-Kostitsyn) but i just wanted to mention that about plekanec

  6. leafssuck67 says:

    ryder will also probably go to arbitration…back-to-back 30 goal seasons (84 goals in his first 3 seasons) will get him a lot more than $2M….

  7. passionch says:

    Yeah, Plekanec probably will accept 2M but Ryder will want more than 2M.  We all know he's a 1 dimensional shooter but he still puts up the goals on the sheets and that means big bucks for him.  Just replace Bertuzzi with one of our young guys.

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