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01-11-2013, 09:36 AM
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Location: Montreal
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Markov is glass. It doesn't matter if he was an ironman before becoming glass. He's played 65 NHL games since the start of the 2009-2010 season. He underwent several surguries, and he got hurt again in the KHL. As far as I am concerned, it is now better to assume that Markov will miss most of the season. Seeing him in the line up is merely a bonus, and not the norm.

Markov is glass, Subban is unsigned, Kaberle is sliding and Bouillon is old. Our defense is more fragile than you want to admit, and it won't be saved by Diaz, Weber and St-Denis. Our toughest D is Bouillon, who shouldn't be a regular. Next comes the unsigned Subban, followed by the fightless Emelin. Offensively, only Markov and Subban can significantly contribute, unless you believe that Kaberle is still worth something.

I say our defense is far from being a ''check''.

Upfront, we finally have a real 4th line. Despite the fact that many fans slot in Armstrong as high up as the first line (epic facepalm), he is a 4th liner that should do well with Prust and White. Eller seems condemned to centre offensively challenged wingers in Moen, Gomez or Bourque. Either that, or he is centred by Gomez. The top 6 is really only a top 5, with a major hole on the LW of the 2nd line. I expect Gomez or Bourque to fill in, which is another facepalm.

Compared to others in the conference, our forward group is average at best. Not a ''check''.

Then we have Price. He is good, and can steal a few games, but we could say the same for Lundqvist, Miller, Rask, Fleury (outside of the Bell Centre!), Pavelec, Brodeur, Ward, Luongo ().

There is nothing wrong with admitting the team isn't very good. Our contracts should make this statement obvious. When you have so many bad contracts (Gomez, Bourque, Kaberle, Markov, Gionta), it is hard to compete. Blaming injuries won't go far, especially when we give long contracts to known injury prone players (Markov) and have a team that is widely considered to be small and soft.

The following players played more than 79 games: Cole, Gorges, Pacioretty, Desharnais, Plekanec, Subban, Eller and Price wasn't injured. If I asked you to name the 8 most important players on the team, you would list exactly those 8 players (unless you are a big fan of Gionta or believe that Markov will be healthy, for once). Our bottom six got destroyed, I'll give you that, but claiming that the key players got injured is simply false.

The following teams should be hands down better than the Habs: Bruins, Rangers, Pens, Flyers, Sens, Caps and it would be a mistake to dismiss the Devils.

Hell, I am glad that we will probably fail this season. Tanking a 48 game season is much better than tanking an 82 one, and Bergevin will have great tools to shed some crippling contract. The future is bright, but the present isn't. Deal with it.

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