Five Reasons to be Stoked for Next Season
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03-02-2012, 02:04 PM
Time to Get Down
Join Date: Mar 2002
Originally Posted by
Despite the pessimism on this board, the
Habs are looking much better then what some fans pretend
I really like what Gauthier have done as of late. He's been stockpiling draft picks in the top 60 for the next 2 years and we have a chance to draft a true impact player this summer that might even be able to help as soon as next season.
For the majority of this season, we've been playing with a cap floor budget. Having Gionta, Markov and Gomez in/out of this line-up takes up to 33% of our cap space, UNUSED cap space.
Say Gomez is gone, which is probably going to happen this summer, we have all the necessary money to resign Price & Subban. With some secondary moves, like trading away Kaberle (because despite what some of you think, he still has some value), we have a large chunk of money (7 million or more) to spend on UFA's. Are we going to bring Parise and Suter in Montréal? Most probably not. But we can still fill out some of our roster with capable veterans.
We have one of the best goalies in the league. Don't let this season's average stats fool you, as soon as we get back Markov and Gauthier manages to install some form of stability to our blueline, he'll be back at the top.
There's a lot of young guys coming into their own lately, and we can only hope they improve for next season. We got a lot of quality prospects on defense that should be ready in a year or two, so we're pretty much set in that department.
Bottom line, I can see the Habs having another "tank" year next season, but not beyond that point. We have solid cornerstones and all we need is some more depth up front, something that should be accomplished via the draft. There's a lot of reasons to be optimistic. Say what you want, but
Gauthier has turned, or is in the process of turning, this franchise around, in a good way
. We've been relying on patchwork UFAs for so long to run this team, and this is exactly why we're in our current position. We're currently building from within and UFAs and trades have only been, up to this point, complimentary players, which is a good thing. We might draft a load of talent in the next two seasons... Just wait.
Personally I don't agree, we seem to be getting much worse not better. The D is a complete mess and while we have 3 or 4 interesting D prospects turning pro this summer, the concern is that we rush them because our D is so weak currently and unless Markov can come in and return to his old ways, or big changes are made to the blueline next year then I think it's to be expected for fans to be concerned.
Getting draft picks is nice but in what appears to be a weak draft it's not as exciting and these picks could be several years away from helping the team.
Having Gio and Markov back next season is good, what they do with Gomez and other problems are a concern though. Getting rid of Gomez/Kabs is not going to be easy imo unless the team is willing to bury them in the AHL or buy them out which depends on if the owner is willing to spend a ton of money on guys to play in the AHL since Gomez is owed 10M over 2 years and Kabs is owed 8.75 M over 2 years. Granted it would be great to be free of that hit but we'll see what happens.
I do think Price is one of the top goalies in the league but unless our D has a major upgrade, (which in part would be done if Markov is anything close to what he used to be) but still way way too soft to play against, then I wouldn't expect too much as Price can only do so much.
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