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06-27-2008, 03:06 PM
Blind Gardien
nexus of the crisis
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Originally Posted by Mike8 View Post
Let's see, my priorities would be ...

Plan A: Sundin. Of course, Sundin is precisely what the Habs need: big, strong net presence, excellent offensive skills, not lacking defensively, a leader and a consistent, proven star forward.

Plan B: Hossa. Okay, it's nice to be optimistic and dream a little, but I don't think it's all that likely that Hossa's going to come to Montreal. I'm also not all that convinced that Hossa fits Montreal's needs precisely. But with that said, he's a proven top-10 winger in the game who's strong defensively, proved this past year that he's not a flake in the playoffs, and he's got plenty of speed. Even if he's a puckhog and more comfortable over an 82-game schedule of playing with pure complementary players as opposed to quality talents (such as his days playing with Bonk in Ottawa), then just stick him with Chipchura to create 3 dangerous lines.

Plan C: Naslund. I'm really interested to see Naslund in Montreal. He's a player who's fallen on hard times, playing in a system, with players that don't fit his style. Naslund generates offense off the rush. He's got strong fundamentals but needs to be in an open system with talent in order to thrive. He can play either wing, and I believe Montreal is the perfect place for Naslund to recapture his game and put up 30-35 goals on a point-per-game pace on a good-value contract (say, 4.5m).
I endorse that prioritization. Naslund is a decent enough fallback "Plan C" option, so long as it's a 1-year deal.
Beyond these plans ... I wouldn't be opposed to the following:

Straka - I've always had a soft spot for Straka. A tenacious worker, speed to burn, versatile, decent defensively, solid on the PK, and a good playoff performer.

Rolston - I'm not convinced he fits Montreal's style, but he does have speed, fundamentals, able to use a booming shot from the point on the PP and able to play the PK.

Liles - I like his puck-moving abilities and skating.
I would probably sneak out onto the limb of assuming that guys who aren't in our Plan A/B/C probably are in some other team's, and hence they aren't likely catches for us down at "Plan D". But who knows. We have money to burn, so the brass will have to line up a bunch of ways in which to burn it. Even if the fit isn't perfect (or even readily apparent), any chance we get to add good players should probably be taken. (With a suitable eye cast to our longterm payroll structure, of course).

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