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04-25-2011, 05:29 PM
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Looking at it, 1995-96 was really a byproduct of the disastrous 94-95 year. The poor 94-95 season, where the Habs missed the playoffs, was easy enough to write off as lockout-related inertia by players, but it still got Desjardins + LeClair shipped out for Recchi, and Muller + Schneider out for Turgeon + Malakhov. I guess everyone around the club was on a short leash, when the team showed signs of similar malaise in 95-96 that's what got the ball rolling on firing Savard + Demers, trading Roy, Keane, etc...

The whole post Stanley Cup phase was a tough one for the club. A really understated fact is that it was more a drop-off in production that precipated these moves (aside from the crazy Carbonneau trade). It's pretty amazing how core guys like Brian Bellows, Stephen Lebeau, Kirk Muller and Lyle Odelein, still under 30, dropped off a cliff statistically post 1992-93. I mean Lebeau, wow, he was out of the league 2 years after putting 80 pts, while Bellows forgot how to score after getting 40+ goals pretty consistently for years.

I'd say two moves put the nail in the coffin for that core: the Recchi trade, hard up for scoring so Savard was desperate; but basically eliminated 2 core players on forward and defense, creating new holes, and Recchi didn't produce at a superstar level ever again. And of course the Roy trade.

But still, even after the Roy trade, with the existing core and new guys like Koivu, Valeri Bure, Tucker, Savage, etc; you'd think the club would at least consistently make the playoffs. But it was just dumb move after dumb move, plus some players didn't pan out, after that.

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