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06-20-2011, 08:15 AM
  #87
neofury*
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Montreal, PQ
Country: Canada
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The way I see it is this. With the cap in place talent is spread around quite a bit. That leaves 16 teams that make the playoffs having favorable teams when compared to one another.

The first place team and eight place team are no longer leaps and bounds difference in terms of talent and something as little as being a good match-up (style that is beneficial against your opponent) can make you win against the 1st place team.

Then we factor in the fact that talent is obviously spread around a lot more. When one of your big name players gets injured it's far more important now a days then it was previously. Injuries play a much bigger role in who wins the cup or rather who can stay healthy. This is why in the next decade I see an 8th place team winning the cup. The hardest part is likely beating the 1st place team especially when healthy, and we've seen it before and we'll see it again. In essence each season there are 14-16 contenders, will knock 2 teams out right away due to being plagued by injuries and we'll say by playoff time 14 are contenders.

Then of those 14 usually two teams also have a goaltending issue or a defense issue, I wouldn't rule them out as contenders so we'll stick with 14 but I'd say they aren't as likely to win as the other twelve. Might be a hair line difference but we're talking hypothetical anyways.

So on any given year 12/16 teams heading into the playoffs minimum are contenders or could even become a contender if they end up against a team in the finals who is plagued by injuries. Then you make it to the Stanley Cup and bottom line is even if it's a healthy 16th place team versus a healthy 1st place team, everyone is playing above their level at that point and it's all about winning a 7 game series. Imo anything can happen but injuries are what stops one team from being a contender or even often times brings one team from not really contending to being one due to their positive health.

If the habs can stay healthy we're definitely a contender because we make the playoffs every year. When you think about it the model of "get your feet in the door" isn't as far off as people around here make it out to be. You make the playoffs especially with a healthy roster, you have a chance to win, you don't even need to be the best roster.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MasterDecoy View Post
agree with your list but i disagree with your assessment of jersey. bad coach or not, what happened last year was a freak occurrence. add a healthy parise to that and you got a hell of team
It isn't so much the "bad coach" aspect he's referring it. More so he's referring to lack of a very good coach in Lemaire as no other comparable coaches will be available they'll be stuck with an average to slightly above average coach at best.

That having been said though, Brodeur is on his way out the door in the next couple years. So that point I agree with. Adding a healthy Parise I don't think will make up for lacking Brodeur and a solid coach. It will make them more of a borderline team but let's not forget they traded away several players too.

Either way we should probably wait and see what their team looks like for puck drop game #1 before we truly make a decision about them. They're an interesting case.

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