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Will Higgins earn a roster spot?

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07-07-2004, 12:00 PM
  #1
flick0069
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Will Higgins earn a roster spot?

Do you guys think Higgins will make the team and if so, on what line will he play?

I'm thinking maybe he has a shot to play on the second line instead of Dagenais. Or maybe on the third line with Bullis and Bonk? It would be a shame to see him play on the fourth line in my opinion...rahter see him getting some playing time in Hamilton if this is the case.

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07-07-2004, 12:19 PM
  #2
pjk27
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I see Higgins making it on the 4th line with Begin and some UFA ( don't see two rookies in the same line) and getting time as/if he earns it on the 2nd line. That's the positive in having kept Dagenais, no issue in sitting him out to play the prospects.

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07-07-2004, 12:30 PM
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If Habs already have Hossa, Plekanek, Perezhogin and Kastystin on the roster, I doubt Higgins will join. Of the group I just mentionned, only Plekanek and Higgins will start the season in the AHL (assuming there is a lock-out), giving them (specially Higgins) the time to increase their experience.

If Perezhogin joins the Habs roster, after Hossa and Plekanek, I would be surprised to see a fourth offensive rookie on the roster.

Since trades and injuries will probably occur, we can however never say never. ;-)

I just wonder if someone here could write a so long "answer" that in fact brings no answer! ;-)

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07-07-2004, 12:51 PM
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafka
If Habs already have Hossa, Plekanek, Perezhogin and Kastystin on the roster, I doubt Higgins will join. Of the group I just mentionned, only Plekanek and Higgins will start the season in the AHL (assuming there is a lock-out), giving them (specially Higgins) the time to increase their experience.

If Perezhogin joins the Habs roster, after Hossa and Plekanek, I would be surprised to see a fourth offensive rookie on the roster.

Since trades and injuries will probably occur, we can however never say never. ;-)

I just wonder if someone here could write a so long "answer" that in fact brings no answer! ;-)
Higgins could very well make it, yes hossa and pleks should be there but we don't know if Perez can play yet and Kastsitsyn isn't even signed yet so he's ruled out for now and it would probly benefit him more if he is signed to start in the AHL first to adjust to the NA game.

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07-07-2004, 01:01 PM
  #5
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Hossa is down on the depth charts in my opinion. Unless he has a great camp he will have a hard time earning a roster spot.

Perezhogin will be playing in Russia next season. Asumming the season is cut by half due to the lockout and that he would still get a suspension by the NHL (maybe only20 or 30 games instead of a full year) he would be waiting practically the whole season. There is no point in keeping here....he's better off playing the whole season in Russia.

Plekanek will have a tough time cracking the line up. We have Koivu, Ribeiro and Bonk as our 3 centres. The only spot left is on the fourth line. He is on the small side also. I would not be surprised to him traded as we are trying to get the team bigger.

Kastystin has an outside shot of making the team but it will be difficult task. He needs at least one year in the AHL to get used to the North American ice surface and style of play. Same as Perezhogin last year.

If we can sign Kovalev back there will be only a couple of roster spots open for forwards.
Zednik-Koivu-Kovalev
Ryder-Ribeiro-Higgins or Dagenais?
Bullis- Bonk- Ward or Sundstrom if we sign him back
Hossa-Begin-Goon? or Dowd if he returns


Not many roster spots available

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07-07-2004, 01:08 PM
  #6
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Higgins has a really good shot to make the team, but IMO, i'd rather he start the season in the AHL, at least for a few weeks, I think that Plekanec who plays the same position, C/LW, and Plekanec IMO, has nothing left to prove at the AHL level

Hossa and Hainsey are pretty much locks to make the team, there's no point exposing them and trying to send them down, as they'd probably get scooped up really quick by some teams looking to bolster they're prospect ranks, insert Leafs,


So I think it'll come down to Plekanec or Higgins, I doubt they keep both...

BTW, where Higgins brother been? haven't seen him post on here for a while, hope everything is well, i'd like to get some news about his brother's thoughts on his season and the season up ahead....

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07-07-2004, 01:26 PM
  #7
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Nope... I just can't see Higgins with a role on this team come next season. The year after is his season IMO, but there are too many other players in the way... Including Marcel Hossa who must be covered through the Waiver wire... So long as there is not a deal, the top 3 LW'ers are Zednik, Hossa, Bulis... They should not leave Higgins on the fourth unless they can gove that fourth line 10 +minutes a game (Which I really doubt, seeing as the first and third lines will be seeing 20 minutes, and Rib's second line will be looking at 15... )
The best option for Higgs is to develop his game on the top line this upcoming season in the AHL,Be the top line LW'er and a call up for any LW'er injury... But as for being an actual hab for the entire season... To me it is very doubtful.

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07-07-2004, 01:28 PM
  #8
Joe Cole
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I hope Hossa brings something to the table for once. It would be a shame to see him go down the drain because he can't put together skill and effort consistantly.

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07-07-2004, 01:42 PM
  #9
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If they have a good training camp they will all make it. Higgins, Hainsey, Komisarek, Plekanec, Hossa and Perezhogin (if the NHL doesn't fully honor the AHL suspension). Only Kastsitsyn will be sent down.

Hainsey and Hossa barring a catastrophic camp are locks because of the fact they have to clear waivers to make it to Hamilton.

After a good summer of training Plekanec should have NHL shape. He has the speed and feistiness to make up for his lack of size. He also improved a lot on his first AHL season. He's been working hard and he has earned a shot. There's a log jam at center so he'll probably be brought in as a LW.

Higgins is a wildcard. I think he's ready to play in the NHL but he needs a good training camp to make it or the habs won't be afraid to send him down for one last season.

Komisarek has earned his spot in the top 6 and will be there for a full season.

Perezhogin would probably be a lock now if it had not been for that incident.

It's been twice now that we've heard Gainey say he intends to go with the youth. He refused UFA offers from Simon and Quintal because of this. CJ has also hinted they were also going with the youth. So they'll all start the season in Montréal IMO. They'll get ice time according to their performances. And if they all choke - they won't - we have enough depht to withstand the blow and a GM that is not going to be afraid to make the necessary changes.

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07-07-2004, 01:46 PM
  #10
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Well I think Hossa will have the best chance of his career this upcoming season... First off, Bonk spent some significant time playing with Hossa's training mate (and Brother), Marian... And will be able to push him in to the line up. Marcel has far to many skills to be pushed aside.. The only question I have for Hossa, is whether or not he'll be beside Ribeiro and Ryder on line 2 (15 mins a game)... Or will he be placed beside Radek Bonk, for 20 minutes a game....

Either way it'll be a tough call to make.

But as for Higgins making the team... the only way I see it is if Zednik is switched to RW, leaving Bulis and Hossa as the remaining 2 top line LW'ers...
I am still holding out faith that Gainey signs Alexei Kovalev, or another big name top line FA. As he said that he would... and even if not, Kastsitsyn or Perezhogin have just as good a chance to be on the top 2 lines before Higgs IMHO...

The fourth line roles that are open (Begin being the only true hold over) on both wings... Higgins might have an outside chance of gaining one of these roles (LW/C) but I think Plekanec will break in first (LW/C)and with the possibility of Begin-Plekanec... the only real opening is on the right Wing.... a spot that Higgins does not play.

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07-07-2004, 02:07 PM
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by E = CH²
It's been twice now that we've heard Gainey say he intends to go with the youth. He refused UFA offers from Simon and Quintal because of this. CJ has also hinted they were also going with the youth. So they'll all start the season in Montréal IMO. They'll get ice time according to their performances. And if they all choke - they won't - we have enough depht to withstand the blow and a GM that is not going to be afraid to make the necessary changes.
Stéphane Quintal stated in an interview that after the season, he met with Bob Gainey and Gainey told him that he wanted him back BUT he had to ask the coach about it. A week late, Gainey called him to tell him that the Habs didn't need him anymore.

So I don't think Gainey is going with a youth movement because of that so if a player is able to help the Habs, even if he is old, he is going to sign him.

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07-07-2004, 02:37 PM
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stefan_Latulippe
Stéphane Quintal stated in an interview that after the season, he met with Bob Gainey and Gainey told him that he wanted him back BUT he had to ask the coach about it. A week late, Gainey called him to tell him that the Habs didn't need him anymore.

So I don't think Gainey is going with a youth movement because of that so if a player is able to help the Habs, even if he is old, he is going to sign him.
Ok

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stéphane Quintal
''Bob told me he wanted to go with young players,'' Quintal said regarding an earlier meeting with Gainey. ''I told him that a 35-year-old veteran like me has a lot to offer a team. I added that I was ready to help young players and to continue to represent the team in the community as I have always been happy to do.''
LINK - TSN

So if what you say is true how come Lapperière never got an offer, how come Gainey told Simon he wasn't interested ? Don't you think we could use the help of guys like Lapperière and Simon - who showed interest in playing here ? Those guys would fill the need for toughness, size and grit we desperatly lack, no ?

I also read in the newspaper that Gainey said Hainsey and Beauchemin would be competing for the last remaining spot on defense. I don't know about you but it screams youth movement to me.


Last edited by E = CH²: 07-07-2004 at 02:40 PM.
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07-07-2004, 02:43 PM
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Cole
I hope Hossa brings something to the table for once. It would be a shame to see him go down the drain because he can't put together skill and effort consistantly.
He kinda reminds me of Kjell Dahlin. Dahlin had a great rookie season, playing with fellow countryman, one of my all-time favourite Habs, Mats Nassluuuuuund, and of course winning the cup that year (86)!
But then Dahlin only played parts of the next 2 seasons and fell off the face of the earth....

I surely hope this is not Marcel's fate as well. I believe he has what it takes to stick with the big club and be a force on the team.

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07-07-2004, 03:09 PM
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacques Strappe
He kinda reminds me of Kjell Dahlin. Dahlin had a great rookie season, playing with fellow countryman, one of my all-time favourite Habs, Mats Nassluuuuuund, and of course winning the cup that year (86)!
But then Dahlin only played parts of the next 2 seasons and fell off the face of the earth....

I surely hope this is not Marcel's fate as well. I believe he has what it takes to stick with the big club and be a force on the team.
He has the size, strength and skill to be a potential tier 2 Kovalev type player ( decent passer, strong on the puck and score 25-30 goals), but it all comes down to clearing his head and playing with determination and the willingness to pay the price in traffic.

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07-07-2004, 03:40 PM
  #15
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It is clear that Gainey is going to give the youth a chance to crack the lineup this fall. That being said, I can see one of Hainsey and Beauchy getting to fight it out with the Cube for the 6/7th spot. Up front, I would imagine that two of Hossa, Higgins, Pleks and maybe Kasty will be battling with Dags for a spot and one of the extra forward spot (or both if Gainey doesn't hire a goon to rotate in and out).

Back to the original question about whether Higgs will crack the lineup...I strongly believe that Gainey is sending all the messages about a bigger focus on the youth, and CJ was consistent all last season about giving playing time based on merit, not on age or salary. That means that the upcoming main training camp will be a true test where the younger players have a legitimate shot of making the big club. Those spots will go to those who perform the best.

Competition in camp keeps younger players motivated, and knowing that your spot could be taken by a similar player who might be lighting it up in Hamilton keeps one honest once they make the squad. It will be healthy competition from Day 1 of the camp right through the season, and that is good!! Look what it did for Ryder last season!!

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07-07-2004, 07:33 PM
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stefan_Latulippe
So I don't think Gainey is going with a youth movement because of that so if a player is able to help the Habs, even if he is old, he is going to sign him.
I like what your saying here but i'd also like to bring up that if we're to have a shortened season if any. Then i'd prefer us to experiment with youth and see how they fair with the club. I'm not saying we should hold of signing anybody, just lets be realistic... If we're not gonna have a season why waste all that time, energy and money - not too sure about whether or not a player will get payed next year, on a person who would cost alot and not nessecary improve us.

I say lets the Kids have their time. Don't pass up good FA signings but lets see what these prospects are finallty made of... We harp on and on about how great our depth is in talent and rookies however we've not really see it....

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Old
07-09-2004, 12:00 AM
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kafka
If Habs already have Hossa, Plekanek, Perezhogin and Kastystin on the roster, I doubt Higgins will join. Of the group I just mentionned, only Plekanek and Higgins will start the season in the AHL (assuming there is a lock-out), giving them (specially Higgins) the time to increase their experience.

If Perezhogin joins the Habs roster, after Hossa and Plekanek, I would be surprised to see a fourth offensive rookie on the roster.

Since trades and injuries will probably occur, we can however never say never. ;-)

I just wonder if someone here could write a so long "answer" that in fact brings no answer! ;-)
Plekanec and Higgins are the best two players on that list by quite a margin. Perezhogin and Kastitsyn won't see the inside of the Bell Centre without a ticket next season.

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07-09-2004, 12:16 AM
  #18
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Not true lol..Kostsitsyn will be training in the Bell Centre during the prospect camp.

Now about the spots available. I see Hainsey and Hossa making the team.
Plekanec should be able to crack the team and Higgins as well.

Zednik-Koivu-Kovalev
Hossa-Ribeiro-Ryder
Bulis-Bonk-Plekanec
Higgins-Begin-Sundstrom?

Brisebois-Hainsey
Komisarek-Souray
Rivet-Markov

Theodore
Huet

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Old
07-09-2004, 06:39 AM
  #19
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Your Sundstrom? should be spelt Ward

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07-09-2004, 10:44 AM
  #20
guerin
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I've made a funny dream yesterday:
Koivu centered a line with Zed and Kovy
but have a knee injury. Then Plekanec
takes first line duty and was outstanding....
maybe it will happen for real?

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