The Habs have way too many veteran forwards
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07-10-2012, 03:21 PM
Join Date: Aug 2010
Originally Posted by
Retrospectively, I wouldn't sign that many UFA forwards. What can be done now? You can either make trades or banish to the AHL. Obviously you can't go from 8 veteran forwards to 3 veteran forwards overnight.
We have a number of forwards aged 28 or less who are already on the roster or could be ready to play in the NHL by 2013-2014, e.g.: Eller, Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Leblanc, Collberg, Desharnais, Pacioretty, White, Kristo, Palushaj, etc. Cup winning teams don't have 8 veteran forwards. They have younger forwards who eat up less cap space and can be effective contributors at younger ages. Of late, cup winning teams tend to either use up cap space on younger elite forwards and expensive veteran roster spots on defencemen.
The thing is, we were very, very thin on top 6 forward prospects since a while. We're finally starting to have some that get going with Pacioretty, Desharnais, and now we might have some new ones with Gachenyuk, Gallagher, Collberg, Leblanc (could be a 2nd line winger eventually...), who knows about Kristo, and maybe Eller will manage to be #2 though I think with our line-up he's more likely to be a good 3rd center.
Why are we paying a lot on veteran forwards? Because except for Pacioretty and Desharnais who really came through 1-2 years ago, the rest likely will not be able to fill a top 6 role for another 2 years (maybe a few like Galchenyuk could in 1 if all goes for the best). And guess what will happen in 2 years? Gionta's contract is done, Gomez's contract is done, Cole will have 1 year left, and the only expensive veteran we'll have left on offense is Plekanec and Bourque for another year. Prust and Moen will still be on the books too, but they're not that expensive (though overpayed some for their role, but we should have some players underpayed for their role, like Galchenyuk for a little while).
I don't think there's a big problem cap-wise in Habsland. No, we're likely not going to win the cup in the next 2 years paying 12.3M for Gionta and Gomez. But we have a very nice bunch of prospects that should all start amounting to something in 2 years, as much on D as on O. Then the veterans will go off the book, and with the amount of money we will save by having many young players entering the line-up, we should try bidding/trading for a star player. I think that's our best path at the moment for a run at the Cup. So for me anything cap-wise that ends within the next 2 years is somewhat irrelevant.
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