The case for a 1-year surgical tank for the Habs
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07-26-2012, 02:01 PM
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Canberra, Australia
Originally Posted by
1- Tanking as a "strategy" should never be an option to start the season for any organization that prides itself on excellence and building a winning culture.
2- as we saw this past year, circumstances can create a lottery-pick season without any concerted attempt to specifically build a weak roster
3- with the talent we have in our lineup today, and the contract situation of most of our veteran players, "tanking" would be virtually impossible unless we started trading away several veterans... that then leaves our quality young players stuck in a very negative season, playing for a team "trying" to lose. That doesn't build the kind of organizational character/values that encourages the kind of self-sacrifice and commitment to winning that perennial contenders like Detroit rely on.
4- we currently have an excellent group of prospects, and 4 top 60 picks in this next "best ever" draft. Without "tanking" we are still in an excellent situation to build a long term contender around the young talent we have in place (Price, Subban, MaxPac, Eller, DD, Galchenyul, Beaulieu, Tinordi, Collberg, Leblanc, Gallagher...). Adding 1 (or if we're really lucky, 2) elite talents via trade or UFA is about the only real "difficult" roster addition this organization needs. That, combined with time and patient-methodical roster building, is what will take us to into the "annual-contender" territory as early as 2013-2014 (depending on how quickly those young talents progress).
Bottom line, imo it's patently ridiculous to argue in favor of any kind of specific attempt to end up with a lottery pick.
conversely, if the season were lost and we end up with another top-5 pick as we did last lockout... Fantastic! No doubt that adding some elite young talent is ALWAYS a good thing.
But the approach MB seems to be on now is exactly what we need. Improving the roster piece-by-piece, focusing first on getting the right kind of character players in place. If he can add Doan (at a resaonable term), great, if not, patiently waiting and moving forward with the group we have now is just fine.
there's enough room for a few young guys to get some quality opportunities, but also enough veteran talent in place so that we should be competitive all year long.
Our group is not far removed from last year's, a 6-10 team that could surprise either way, top-4 or bottom-4, depending on the extent of luck/bad luck.
If we end up just in the playoffs, it may mean a lower set of picks, but if that draft is as good as people say it is, Timmins should do just fine with the 4xtop60 picks he has.
Tanking? aside from the budget-enforced limitations that some teams have, no GM actively builds a crappy roster. Some GM's just aren't good at what they do, so their weak rosters fall off quicker and then making roster moves in-season for the "future" is the only sensible thing to do.
If we hit January/February and we're out of the playoff race (highly unlikely), then sure let's see what the market is for some of our vets (though with none of the better ones on expiring deals, if we suck, they aren't likely playing well, so the return we'd get will be minimized due to the extra year(s) left on their deals.
If we're close, then you stand pat and only make an "upgrade" move if it is either at low-cost (ie for a depth addition), or if it's for a guy that either has multiple years left or is a UFA that we want to extend (ie adding someone beyond just the playoff push).
If we're are tearing it up, then maybe risk a quality asset or two to strongly bolster the group for a long-playoff run.
but tank? as the OP laid it out? No chance in hell.
The main difference between our two lines of thinking is that I'm willing to project the performance level of the current Habs roster.
12th to 15th place.
If we're not signing Semin or doing a big trade, then we're on a collision course with a lottery pick.
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