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01-14-2013, 06:10 PM
  #87
Lshap
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Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Montreal
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A slightly different perspective:

Screw 2012. Rather than assume the Habs are automatically going to mirror last year's meltdown, why not assume we're a continuation of 2011. We finished 6th in the EC and played a strong playoff series, losing in overtime game 7. Lots to build on from there, right? And guess what - our core from that year is in place and mostly improved. We've lost a few solid guys but we've gained back at least as much.

See for yourself. Here's the Habs now, compared to our solid 2011 season:

Returning from 2011 (+ is improved / = is the same as then / - is diminished):

Price +

Subban +
Gorges +
Webber +

Pacioretty +
Eller +
Desharnais +
Plekanec =
Gionta =/-
White +
Moen +/=

No longer on the team

Cammalleri
A. Kostitsyn
Gomez
Pouliot
Halpern
Darche
Hamrlik
Spacek
Wisniewski
Gill

Added

Cole
Bourque
Armstrong
Prust

Emelin
Diaz
Bouillon
Kaberle
Markov (he only played 7 games in '11)

Summary: Biggest loss from 2011 is a productive Cammy and AK up front and the solid D of Hamrlik and Gill, plus Wiz's offensive D.

But Cole is better than Cammy, and Bourque, Armstrong and Prust can compensate for the erratic offence of the rest of the departed. We took a major hit on D, but Bouillon and a returning Markov can be at least as good. And then there are the maturing guys like Emelin and Diaz.

Plus look at the improvement curve on most of our returning players. Pacioretty, DD are miles ahead. Eller could break out. Worst case is Gionta slowing down slightly.

Overall:

Returning guys: The majority of our roster is returning, mostly young and still improving.

Net Gain/Loss Offence: Offensive talent is approx equal to 2011. If Bourque wakes up, if Eller blossoms, we're better.

Net Gain/Loss Defense: Very solid D in 2011 could return in 2013 if Markov does. Emelin and Diaz can make or break our D, depending whether they step up.

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