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Hamilton Bulldogs/Wheeling Nailers 2011-12 season

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Old
07-07-2011, 04:51 PM
  #26
Booba
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bcv View Post
Where's palushaj?
The cool answer would be to say that I had him in the Habs lineup, but actually I completly forgot about him.

Forgetting the obvious

However, I wouldn't be surprised if the Habs start the season with only 12 forwards (with Weber filling as forward sometimes) or 13 forwards (maybe PG will sign a guy like Wincester).

So that might be how the Dogs lineup will look 80-90% of the time because with such a low number of forwards on the NHL squad, we might often see some guys like Palushaj, Engvist, Blunden or maybe even Conboy in the big show.


Quote:
Originally Posted by katatoniak View Post
Blunden is not a center
Anyone between Palushaj, Trotter or Wilsie that can play center?

Quote:
Originally Posted by kovacro View Post
I don't think you would have to sign Hamel to a 2-way. I'm pretty sure for the last 2 years he was signed to just an AHL standard contract.

Another option would be a guy like Marco Rosa (formerly of Manitoba) he's a pretty solid AHL'er and you wouldn't need to sign him to an NHL/AHL deal. He was on an AHL only deal for the last 2 years with the Mooose.

I agree about Petruic. He did a nice job as a number 7 guy. Good vet to have.

I also think Palushaj starts the year in the Hammer.
Hamel had a really good year with an awful Adirondack team. I think a lot of AHL team would be interested to acquire him. I believe that we will need to offer a two-way to get him. We're only at 42 contracts (46 when we'll sign Gorges, White, St-Denis and Carle) so it's not the end of the world to "waste" a contract slot on a minor league player.

However, I agree that Rosa could also be a decent option and he isn't worth more than a AHL contract.

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07-11-2011, 10:57 AM
  #27
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The Dogs will be fun to watch this year!

Palushaj - Trotter - Wilsie (May be the best AHL line, but I'd mix the rookies/vets more)
Blunden - Leblanc - Avstin (Bluden is a big body goalscorer would complement these guy a lot)
Conboy - Engvist - Dumont (energy line, checking line)
Fortier - Nattinen - Schultz
Ex : Masse, Bishop, Berger

ECHL : Lefevbre

Nash - Diaz
St.Denis - Carle
Henry - Stejskal (shutdown pair)
Petruic

Lawson
Delmas/Mayer

Quote:
Originally Posted by Booba View Post
Anyone between Palushaj, Trotter or Wilsie that can play center?
Trotter can play center. Trotter/Wilsie/Palushaj will end up the year with like 85 pts each if they play togheter all year in the AHL..
Bluden is a big body that can score goal. With a hardworker center like Leblanc and a pure offensive skills like Avstin, taht can be a good line too. But I'd like to mix it a little bit tp have 2 good lines and leadership in both to help the young guys develop better. Its a developement league ..

So instaid of putting all the eggs in the same basket, a line up like this would be great :

Big body - hardworker - goalscorer - vets - young guns on each line

Palushaj - Trotter - Avstin
Bluden - Leblanc - Wilsie


Last edited by Habsfan18: 07-11-2011 at 12:42 PM. Reason: merged
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Old
07-11-2011, 11:03 AM
  #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Booba View Post
Anyone between Palushaj, Trotter or Wilsie that can play center?
I don't think any of them have played center in years. I can see the Dogs going with somewhat defensive centers between more offensive wingers:

Trotter-Engqvist-Palushaj
Willsie-Fortier-Blunden
Conboy-Leblanc-Dumont
Avtsyn-Nattinen-Berger

...maybe Nattinen and/or Berger start in the ECHL, if Hamilton wants to go with Masse, Schultz or Bishop?

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Old
07-11-2011, 12:34 PM
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kboum View Post
Trotter can play center. Trotter/Wilsie/Palushaj will end up the year with like 85 pts each if they play togheter all year in the AHL..
Bluden is a big body that can score goal. With a hardworker center like Leblanc and a pure offensive skills like Avstin, taht can be a good line too. But I'd like to mix it a little bit tp have 2 good lines and leadership in both to help the young guys develop better. Its a developement league ..

So instaid of putting all the eggs in the same basket, a line up like this would be great :

Big body - hardworker - goalscorer - vets - young guns on each line

Palushaj - Trotter - Avstin
Bluden - Leblanc - Wilsie
I'd assume Trotter will be at LW, he played LW in Hamilton. Plus if the Habs don't add anyone else someone like Blunden or Engqvist could be with the Habs.

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Old
07-11-2011, 02:09 PM
  #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roulin View Post
...maybe Nattinen and/or Berger start in the ECHL, if Hamilton wants to go with Masse, Schultz or Bishop?
We'll see, they are going to be some interesting battles at training camp. It's Masse and Bishop's last year of the contract. It's their last chance to prove that they are at least AHLers. While we still have 3 years to evaluate Lefevbre, Berger and Nattinen (Although, I could see Nattinen and Berger returning to Europe if they spend to much time in the ECHL)

Anyway, so far, there is only 15 or 16 forwards projected in Hamilton's lineup which is a pretty low number for a minor league affiliate. I believe that everyone will be able to play a lot of games at the AHL level this season.

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07-11-2011, 03:55 PM
  #31
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With Yann Danis signing with the oilers, there's going to be a few former Hamilton goalies that are going to cause the Dogs fits this year, with Sanford, MacIntyre, Desjardins and Danis. At least Sanford isn't in the same conference, but having to face MacIntyre and Desjardins a bunch of times as divisional rivals won't be too fun.

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07-12-2011, 07:45 AM
  #32
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Originally Posted by montreal View Post
With Yann Danis signing with the oilers, there's going to be a few former Hamilton goalies that are going to cause the Dogs fits this year, with Sanford, MacIntyre, Desjardins and Danis. At least Sanford isn't in the same conference, but having to face MacIntyre and Desjardins a bunch of times as divisional rivals won't be too fun.
What do you know about the goalies slated for the Dogs this year?

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07-12-2011, 08:46 AM
  #33
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Originally Posted by AllCanadienFan View Post
What do you know about the goalies slated for the Dogs this year?
I'm hoping Mayer isn't around, I'd rather a Lawson/Delmas combo. I saw Lawson at AAU (was a bad team from what I recall and he didn't stand out) so I don't really know what to expect from him. I don't see him as being on the same level as Sanford or Mac but we'll see in about 90 days.

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07-12-2011, 11:24 PM
  #34
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I think Trotter makes the habs to start the season, maybe Palushaj too. With Eller out to start of the season they both have a chance to make it. I'm starting to think Pierre Gauthier is finished picking up anymore Ufa's.

Mathieu Carle doesn't he have to clear waivers if he doesn't make the big club? My opinion is he makes the team this year. He's paid his dues as a Bulldog. he's been dominant at his position, made the all star team last year, in one of the games I saw when he played with the habs in 2010 he looked pretty good to me. Somehow I think he will latch on to the final spot on D. I hope we don't lose him like we did Beauchemin. We groom these guys for 4-5 years and then lose them for nothing and some other team benefits. I think Carle has potential, good skater has offensive talent, good passer, mobile and isn't that small at 6'0 205lbs. Anyhow he's my underdog pick to make the habs this year.

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Old
07-13-2011, 02:16 AM
  #35
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Swedish blogger Marie Hallman did an interview with Hamilton/Montreal's own Andreas Engqvist, well, in all honestly I asked her to. I did the quick google translate and made some corrections to cover up the most glaring "WTF are they talking about" gems.

Here it is:

Quote:
Andreas Engqvist played in three NHL games during his debut year in North America. But fold the bill and go home now? No, it is not included in the plans.

- No, because in some way ... you do not want to regret anything and I am signed for another year. Plus, I got to know a bit about it (NHL) last season, so I'll just go there and continue fighting for a place, says Engqvist to the blog.

There were 71 games in the AHL with Hamilton Bulldogs and three of the NHL team Montreal. And life in the AHL was better than he had expected.

- It's been great! Everything has been different but I'm still pleasantly surprised. We have heard so much on the AHL and it was not as bad as I thought, not as bad as people here at home have said that it was.

How did you think it was then?
- There has been much talk about trips and stuff like that and maybe I have been in a good organization because they have been a little kinder with the flights, we flew a lot. I think the club's longest trip was six hours and the longest with Djurgarden was probably four or five hours so it was good.

Hockey-wise, then?
- We had heard a little bit about how it would be, well, the first two lines are very good players who are of high quality. What is different compared with Sweden is that there (in Sweden) have some young talent in the third and fourth lines, while in the AHL, it is a little tougher, more fighters in the bottom lines.

If I remember correctly, you were often on the first line?
- Well, it was a little different. I started on the third line, then when Montreal called a player up, and another one was traded, that was halfway in the season, after that I played mostly on the first and second line. Usually we were the second line but sometimes we was the first, it was probably because they wanted to match us against any particular line in the other teams.

What role did you play?
- I know that I can play two styles well and I've been more defensive now than I was last year in Djurgarden, but I'm happy with the defensive style as well, and you play of course as you're told. Now they wanted me to be more defensive and then you get to take that role.

There were 10 +15 points in the series and 4 +5 points in 20 games in the playoffs, it's not loads of points?
- No, it's a little bit to do with the role I had, but I should certainly have scored more points, says Andreas Engqvist self-critical.

To get into the team was easy:
- It was a nice group with many players of my own age, good guys. Since it was no other Swede, I quickly gelled with the team. There is a little different when there are no other Swedes to talk to, you have to socialize with the others and that is good in a way. When you feel more a part of the team.

What was it like playing on small ice then?
- It's a little different but somehow ... it's not something you think about when playing games, you just go. Then maybe you get on to things that are different, with time. There is space in other areas than you're used to but the biggest difference is the number of games. You play four games in five days, and this isn't something you are used coming over from Sweden.

What was most difficult about that?
- It's tough. Especially at the end, I think we had ten games in the last sixteen days and then the playoffs started. And it felt in the body clearly.

So you have become a little hardened now, ha, ha?
- No, ha, ha, but that's how it is over there, it's something you get used to, you see how the others are preparing themselves, what their routines are, you get used to everything, says Andreas Engqvist.

But a taste of Sweden is never wrong anyway. Especially when it's Christmas. Andreas' girlfriend were in Hamilton throughout the season, and over Christmas came a little loved ones to visit.

- We stopped at Ikea and bought Julmust [swedish Christmas soda] and some Swedish sweets to get a little Christmas feel, ha ha.

Andreas played a total of three NHL games, two in January and one in March. NHL debut came on January 21, away from home against Ottawa. The day after he played the first home game at Bell Centre.

- The first game was ... cool. We won 7-1 as well, so it was not a boring game to play in, ha, ha. Then to play the second game of the Bell Centre, home, was amazing. It was powerful, so incredibly crowded. I think the stadium has 23 000 people and it has been crowded over the past seven years. But Montreal is, well, hockey mecca. []

The best experience?
- First game, of course. Partly because it was just the first and we won so big. And then when you went out on the ice in the Bell Centre, it's something you remember. The hair stood up when it came out on the ice but then when the puck is dropped, you forget about all of that in a way.

What do you think about spending most of the time in the AHL?
- Well, you know that for some it takes time to get into the NHL. There are not many from Sweden who arrive and will play in the NHL right away. Some do, but if you don't, you have to take the other path. You can say that I "only" has three NHL games, but you have to see it as a bonus that you get to play at all. It is the only way to know that you are close to a place in the NHL, because no one tells you. But if you're called up, you get some confirmation that they think you do something good.

What were your expectations of the game in the NHL before you went?
- I do not know what I was expecting really, and they have many centers in Montreal. And there are many good players who are fighting to get up. There was a guy who was called up. And no one knows what may happen this summer. Some have left and there may still be some new guys coming in, you have to take it as it comes. I am signed for another year, so I go over and do everything I can to get me into the team, said Andreas Engqvist.

While in Djurgarden it happened that he was singing "oh such a lovely day" in the shower when Djurgĺrden won. One could translate that song to the Bulldogs, but no. It is something that belongs to Djurgarden, accordign to Andreas.

- I have tried to keep track of them [Djurgarden] over there but it is difficult to see any games, almost impossible of course. I have tried to check out some different options and watch highlights on hockeyligan.se. Then of course Kyle also played in Hamilton, he knew that I followed them (Djurgarden), so he asked me all the time how it went so we had some Djurgarden talk anyway, he and I, ha, ha.

Did you know that Kyle would return Djurgarden?
- No, the thing is, we had talked a little about it but I did not know it was done until Djurgarden made it official. But he likes Djurgarden, he had a really good time when he was here and said all along that if he would return to Sweden, it would be Djurgarden because he liked the town, the crowd and everyone on the team.

What about you then? Do you have a plan for what to do if you do not get many games in the NHL next season?
- No, I am signed for another year and then you get to see how things are after that year. But if I play in Sweden there is only one team. Or two! Spanga [his youth team] and Djurgĺrden, ha, ha. So if I feel that I should go home, then Djurgarden is thre only optiony if they still want me.

But I am prepared to fight (in Montreal and the AHL Hamilton Bulldogs team) to take a spot. It's the attitude you have to have. Then you take each year and see what your options look like.

What do you need to get better at in order to take that NHL spot?
- EVERYTHING! I must get better at everything.

When you were playing in the NHL, did you feel how far away it was or how close?
- There was more closeness. One feels that it is possible, and for every step you take you will be closer. It was the same thing the first time you play in the SEL and first in the national team, you feel that you are not so far away. That you can do it, says Andreas Engqvist.


http://marieshockeyblogg.blogspot.co...g-ar.html#more

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Old
07-13-2011, 08:23 AM
  #36
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I like what I'm reading, but unless his FO% goes up, we really need someone else.

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07-13-2011, 08:55 AM
  #37
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Originally Posted by Em Ancien View Post
I like what I'm reading, but unless his FO% goes up, we really need someone else.
I thought he was strong on face-offs. Does the AHL keep face-off stats.

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07-13-2011, 08:59 AM
  #38
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I thought he was strong on face-offs. Does the AHL keep face-off stats.
No idea, but he was awful in the NHL, which is where it matters.

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07-13-2011, 09:04 AM
  #39
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Great interview.

Regarding the questions about the AHL, it's no wonder Europeans are hesitant to come play over here with all the bad things people say about it.

Hamilton must have one of the toughest travel schedules too I'd imagine.

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07-13-2011, 09:16 AM
  #40
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Originally Posted by HabzManiac View Post
I think Trotter makes the habs to start the season, maybe Palushaj too. With Eller out to start of the season they both have a chance to make it. I'm starting to think Pierre Gauthier is finished picking up anymore Ufa's.

Mathieu Carle doesn't he have to clear waivers if he doesn't make the big club? My opinion is he makes the team this year. He's paid his dues as a Bulldog. he's been dominant at his position, made the all star team last year, in one of the games I saw when he played with the habs in 2010 he looked pretty good to me. Somehow I think he will latch on to the final spot on D. I hope we don't lose him like we did Beauchemin. We groom these guys for 4-5 years and then lose them for nothing and some other team benefits. I think Carle has potential, good skater has offensive talent, good passer, mobile and isn't that small at 6'0 205lbs. Anyhow he's my underdog pick to make the habs this year.
I could see Engqvist making the team out of camp since at this point we need a center more then a RW or LW. I would be surprised if Palushaj made the team out of camp. Carle would have to clear waivers to be sent down, same for Blunden.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Edmontreal View Post
Swedish blogger Marie Hallman did an interview with Hamilton/Montreal's own Andreas Engqvist, well, in all honestly I asked her to. I did the quick google translate and made some corrections to cover up the most glaring "WTF are they talking about" gems.

Here it is:

http://marieshockeyblogg.blogspot.co...g-ar.html#more
Thanks, that was an interesting interview.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Em Ancien View Post
I like what I'm reading, but unless his FO% goes up, we really need someone else.
He and Desharnais were Hamilton's best in the face-off circle. So I don't think it will be a problem for him if he were in the NHL this season, once he got adjusted to the league.

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Old
07-13-2011, 01:33 PM
  #41
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You're welcome guys, I am glad to help.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Less Habitats View Post
Great interview.

Regarding the questions about the AHL, it's no wonder Europeans are hesitant to come play over here with all the bad things people say about it.

Hamilton must have one of the toughest travel schedules too I'd imagine.
I've given some thought to that as well and if I am allowed to speculate:

I think that one of the main differences between the SEL, if viewed as a development league which it to some extent is, and the AHL is I believe there is a stronger focus on the team and less about the individual in the SEL. While not the top league globally, it is in Sweden and winning it holds a special place in Swedes hearts. Not to take anything away from the Calder Cup, but it is still "just" the Calder, not the Stanley Cup. Pretty much like I guess most NA fans and players feel about the World Championships. Great that we picked up the gold medal, wrong tourney.
I think that players in general in the AHL to a degree, when compared to SEL players in general, is more focused on taking the next step individually, than the succes of the team. And we are no talking black and white here, it is just shades of grey. Also, most SEL teams has a bunch of returning players that has been developed within the club and are playing for their hometown teams. Thay are in general held in high regard within the organizations and strong voices within the room, expected to set the bar and guidelines for new players. This probably has some effect on the vibe in the room.

The number of games, SEL teams play 55 games a season and back-to-back games are extremely rare. Usually the play 2-3 games a week and almost always return home after road games.

3rd and 4th line players. As Andreas noted, in the SEL, the bottom lines are usually a few veterans coupled with a couple of junior players. While there are physical players in the SEL, it is on another level compared to the AHL.

The SEL game in general is slower, less run and gun.


With that said, I feel I've noticed a change in attitude towards the AHL among young Swedes, more player are willing to give it a shot even though they are barely established in the SEL and have'nt played for the national team. That didn't happen at all a couple of years ago. Also, there are players heading over playing junior hockey in Canada, something that has been extremely rare a couple of years ago. Case in point, Douglas Murray, Gabriel Landeskog and Rikard Rakell (drafted 30th overall in 2011)

I think the stories told about the AHL a couple of years ago was pretty much straight out of Slap Shot.
Great movie BTW..

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07-13-2011, 08:04 PM
  #42
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Ed, you've been bringing in these AWESOME tidbits lately. Please keep it up.

As for Engqvist, I like that he acknowledges he needs improvement at everything, but I'm sure that if he doesn't make the team some time this year, he's gone. I hope mgmt is aware of that.

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07-13-2011, 08:36 PM
  #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kboum View Post
The Dogs will be fun to watch this year!

Palushaj - Trotter - Wilsie (May be the best AHL line, but I'd mix the rookies/vets more)
Blunden - Leblanc - Avstin (Bluden is a big body goalscorer would complement these guy a lot)
Conboy - Engvist - Dumont (energy line, checking line)
Fortier - Nattinen - Schultz
Ex : Masse, Bishop, Berger

ECHL : Lefevbre

Nash - Diaz
St.Denis - Carle
Henry - Stejskal (shutdown pair)
Petruic

Lawson
Delmas/Mayer



Trotter can play center. Trotter/Wilsie/Palushaj will end up the year with like 85 pts each if they play togheter all year in the AHL..
Bluden is a big body that can score goal. With a hardworker center like Leblanc and a pure offensive skills like Avstin, taht can be a good line too. But I'd like to mix it a little bit tp have 2 good lines and leadership in both to help the young guys develop better. Its a developement league ..

So instaid of putting all the eggs in the same basket, a line up like this would be great :

Big body - hardworker - goalscorer - vets - young guns on each line

Palushaj - Trotter - Avstin
Bluden - Leblanc - Wilsie
Was there any point getting Wilsie when you can't even fit Berger and Massé in the line-up?

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07-13-2011, 08:42 PM
  #44
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Was there any point getting Wilsie when you can't even fit Berger and Massé in the line-up?
lol Massé

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07-13-2011, 08:54 PM
  #45
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Masse is such garbage, lol.

Honestly, I gotta think that Berger takes Fortier out of the line-up somehow.

I don't think Fortier or Masse have any foreseeable future with the organization.

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07-13-2011, 09:59 PM
  #46
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Originally Posted by Habsolument90 View Post
Ed, you've been bringing in these AWESOME tidbits lately. Please keep it up.

As for Engqvist, I like that he acknowledges he needs improvement at everything, but I'm sure that if he doesn't make the team some time this year, he's gone. I hope mgmt is aware of that.
I think the Habs can survive without Engqvist, he's just a fringe NHL player. Wasn't dominant at the AHL level, won't be a big loss.

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07-13-2011, 10:26 PM
  #47
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I think the Habs can survive without Engqvist, he's just a fringe NHL player. Wasn't dominant at the AHL level, won't be a big loss.
If his defensive skills can translate to the NHL, I'd gladly keep him. He's a big guy with some decent skill, and right handed centremen aren't too common in Montreal.

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07-13-2011, 10:37 PM
  #48
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I actually think by the lack of action on the free agent front, we're going to be going into the season with Engqvist as our fourth line center.

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07-13-2011, 10:41 PM
  #49
Em Ancien
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WeThreeKings View Post
I actually think by the lack of action on the free agent front, we're going to be going into the season with Engqvist as our fourth line center.
At least, the youth apologists are gonna be happy.

Until the season starts.

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07-13-2011, 11:44 PM
  #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcal64 View Post
I think the Habs can survive without Engqvist, he's just a fringe NHL player. Wasn't dominant at the AHL level, won't be a big loss.

He was asked to play a lot of hockey against some of the best players in the AHL. That may not have translated into impressive hockey stats to prop up his worth, but it does still keep him alive and well in the next tier of potential callups. He may not have the same top end as some of the kids, but he has proven to be a lot closer than a lot of the kids heading into camp this fall. How is that a bad thing?

Edit: this is also a guy who has played for the national team against decent competition. He may not have the same top-end limit, but his resume at his age is still decent compared to a lot of similar aged prospects.

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