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McKenzie's Take On The Habs

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Old
01-11-2013, 10:08 AM
  #26
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One thing is for sure. It's an interesting season to predict. I really am not sure how to judge until I see a few games. Too many new things.

What concerns me is the tight schedule though. Usually a team with so many new faces (from management to players including the coach in this case) need a few weeks to gel. They can't afford that this year. It has to click from the get-go.

As usual though, Price will have to be stellar if they're going to make it in. That and they need to have a dangerous PP.

It'll be interesting to watch, getting pretty excited about it.

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01-11-2013, 10:20 AM
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Me too. It's a sprint and anything can happen! Most of all I want to see Markov silence the naysayers!

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01-11-2013, 10:25 AM
  #28
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Originally Posted by makbowles View Post

You also have to consider all our young players getting better. We're not a contender but we're sure not a shoo in for atop 5 pick.
Every team in the NHL has young players.

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01-11-2013, 10:36 AM
  #29
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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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01-11-2013, 10:39 AM
  #30
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Originally Posted by DAChampion View Post
Every team in the NHL has young players.
True, but our core is especially young. Plus the older neophytes (Diaz, dd, emelin) who can still improve as well.

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01-11-2013, 10:46 AM
  #31
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If team does miss playoffs and play poorly could Terrian job be in trouble?And if Bob Hartley leads Calgary deep in playoffs could this cause friction in Canadien ownership?Considering some people liked Hartley better.

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01-11-2013, 10:57 AM
  #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Out East View Post
I agree to Price and Beowulf. I'm getting really tired of the knocks on Markov. He is not glass. Prior to that cut tendon he was an ironman. He blew out a knee. It happens in this business all the time and the only thing he did wrong after that was come back too soon. Markov is one of the classiest, honest, hardworking guys to wear the CH in my lifetime. He isn't old, his knee seems to be good to go, why are we not looking forward to his coming back? I'll tell you why. Because the average fan is short sighted, ungrateful, and sometimes downright rude and ignorant. I'd like to see those who think he is glass go into a corner with him.

No one noticed or brought out what McKenzie said about our D corps.

I think so many of you are depressed about last year that you just can't pull yourselves together.

Subban - Gorges
Markov - Emelin
Diaz/Kaberle - Bouillon
Diaz Kaberle
Weber
St Denis

Put that up against all the defense corps in the eastern conference and tell me it's horrible. Do you remember that for the first two months last year we were rolling out

Subban - Gorges
Diaz(rookie) - Gill
Emelin (rookie)- Weber (basically rookie)

I think we quickly forget...

Emelin now is much better than Emelin then
Same for Diaz
Markov will be better than all of them even Subban imo and I concede I may be wrong on that one. Time will tell. Gorges is better if any change. Kaberle can't be worse, could be better and we have some rookies in the wings with big upside.

Price is Price - I expect a slow start due to lack of playing and no preseason games but he'll be fine.

Pac - DD - Cole
Bourque - Pleks - Gionta
Gomez/Armstrong - Eller - Moen
Gomez/Armstrong - White - Prust
Leblanc
Nokel.
Dumont
Blunden
Gallager
*Gally (who knows that the plans are there)

Success starts in goal - check
Success is built on the D corps after that - I say check
Then you need a balance of scoring, speed, defense, and toughness. We're only lean on scoring if Bourque and Gionta flop and Eller doesn't improve. The likelyhood of even two of those happening is slim imo.
Speed to burn
Best PK last year despite the circus. Depends how much Therrien changes the system
Toughness is improved, could still be better, especially on the backend.

If this team doesn't make the playoffs I'll be surprised.
Like your posts thus far. Especially that comment from your previous post about 'expert' analysis basically being a rehash of whatever happened the previous year. Drives me nuts.

I also appreciate the optimism in this particular post which, even if you're wrong, is at least a cheerier kind of wrong. The one point I'll debate you on is your 'check' next to scoring. Even with a healthy Gionta and a Bourque fully recovered from his six-month nap, the Habs remain a low-scoring team. Chronically. Frustratingly. Like over the last three or four years. And back then we had veteran defencemen like Hamrlik who were able to feed a one-dimensional sniper like Cammalleri and orchestrate an effective PP. Offense starts with defense, which is why we sucked like an interstellar black-hole last year. This year, a lot depends on our revamped and reconditioned D. IF Markov is really back, IF Emelin and Diaz have progressed, IF the entire corps has learned to operate a fast, effective and un-telegraphed PP, then I'll jump aboard the optimism bandwagon and write my own 'check'.

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01-11-2013, 10:59 AM
  #33
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Originally Posted by makbowles View Post
True, but our core is especially young. Plus the older neophytes (Diaz, dd, emelin) who can still improve as well.
Is our core that young? Cole, Gionta, Bourque, Gomez and Markov are only going to get worse at their ages. Plekanec and Gorges will probably start to slowly decline soon. Diaz, DD, Emelin aren't that young, Price is approaching his prime.

Of the players I'd consider in the teams core, only Subban, Pacioretty, and Eller have a ton of a room to grow. Galchenyuk might not even make the team yet.

I don't think that's an exceptionally young team. We are pretty young at center, on defense and the wings not so much.

Quote:
Originally Posted by baldrick View Post
It wasn't an essay but a synopsis.
Gomez continued to get starting minutes last season despite being horrendous, partly because the coaches didn't have enough confidence in Eller. Hopefully that changes this "season". Don't shoot the messenger, just hope faith is shown in Eller.
Actually Eller, while given no opportunity to really improve his playmaking, was given difficult matchups and PK time. He probably had the hardest job of any forward besides Plekanec.

Gomez on the other hand was treated with the kid gloves and faced some of the softest opposition on the team. He was basically treated like a rookie.

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01-11-2013, 11:02 AM
  #34
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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.
What I learned from this is you are married to your opinion and full of yourself as evinced by your final sentence.

Markov had ONE injury that had anything to do with the strength/fragility of his body. ONE. If you want to call that glass you are welcome to your opinion but it doesn't make it truth.

You list the Flyers as a playoff team. Line up their D beside ours. Oh and apparently Briere is glass now. I never blamed injuries and I never said we're an elite team. You named 6 teams as above the Habs and slid the Pariseless Devils with a 40 year old goalie as a maybe. That still leaves a playoff spot and I don't even agree that the Flyers or Devils are shoe ins. McKenzie is more knowledgable than both of us and he thinks our D is ok. Kaberle had .5 ppg last year with us. Is that horrible? He was minus 6 with us, not so bad on a losing team. We're not counting on him for top 4 minutes so no big deal.

Obviously you are stuck to your opinion but I'm not going to roll over and play dead. May I quote you at this point?

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Friendly wager on Markov perhaps? I say he plays more than 40 games and proves many including yourself wrong.

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01-11-2013, 11:04 AM
  #35
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Originally Posted by makbowles View Post
True, but our core is especially young. Plus the older neophytes (Diaz, dd, emelin) who can still improve as well.
If you look around the division for players born in 1989 or later you'll see that every single team has young players that could improve.

Boston has Tyler Seguin, who has significant margin of possible improvement.
Buffalo has Ennis, Myers,
Ottawa has Turris, Karlsson,
Toronto has Kadri, JVR, Gardiner,
and Montreal has... Eller and Subban born in 1989 and not one young player born in 1990 or later with significant possibility of improvement.

We have no more young players poised for improvement than the rest of the division, and the quality is no higher.

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01-11-2013, 11:05 AM
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Me too. It's a sprint and anything can happen! Most of all I want to see Markov silence the naysayers!
That's the right attitude my man. I have some doubts about Markov's ability to have the same impact, but I'd love for him to come back and be dominant, and especially feed those beauty cross ice passes for the one timer to Plecky(or whoever) on the PP.

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01-11-2013, 11:07 AM
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If team does miss playoffs and play poorly could Terrian job be in trouble?And if Bob Hartley leads Calgary deep in playoffs could this cause friction in Canadien ownership?Considering some people liked Hartley better.
I expect Calgary to compete with the Habs and the Islanders.

They've spent the past several years drafting badly and doing band-aid moves like Jokinen, Cammalleri, and Wideman. They are overdue for a serious tank just like the Habs were last year. Their 2nd round pick will get us a good player, a Collberg-caliber player imo. I hope to se Jarome Iginla traded to a contender at the deadline, he deserves a cup imo.

I don't think Therrien's job is in trouble. Management are rational, intelligent people, deep down they certainly know what to expect.

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01-11-2013, 11:10 AM
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Originally Posted by DAChampion View Post
I expect Calgary to compete with the Habs and the Islanders.
They've spent the past several years drafting badly and doing band-aid moves like Jokinen, Cammalleri, and Wideman. They are overdue for a serious tank just like the Habs were last year. Their 2nd round pick will get us a good player, a Collberg-caliber player imo. I hope to se Jarome Iginla traded to a contender at the deadline, he deserves a cup imo.

I don't think Therrien's job is in trouble. Management are rational, intelligent people, deep down they certainly know what to expect.
I don't know what else to add, sorry !

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01-11-2013, 11:20 AM
  #39
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I don't know if I'm optimistic and I really wasn't excited about coach Therrien being named. But beyond that we have some real plus to this season. Despite Patches and Cole alot of players played below their potential. Eller,Pleks, Bourque, Gionta, Price should all improve this season without a doubt. #2 if we can improve even 25% in our shootout wins coulum from last year we will be dancing, and it shouldn't be hard, we lost a ton of points in that scenario. #3 Markov obviously being back. #4 The biggest plus about Therrien being back is we should see a change in style from the previous years of more defensive hockey and bank on your power play to score. I think with a goalie like Price, let em earn his bucks and let the team be more aggressive on forecheck. I'm a realist, don't get me wrong, and if Scott Gomez touchs the ice as a Hab this season its only going to be a negative. But I think we do have a chance of eeking into #8 spot if the boys can show some heart. Historically we have been a team that catches fire out of the gate and sags in the last 30 games, with a shortened season anything can go.

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01-11-2013, 11:21 AM
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Markov is a piece of glass, they just barely touch him and he is injured. Body is brittle ie Brunet. I wouldn't expect much from him this year.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i0VYCjQtYHs

If Subban doesn't get signed or has another off year, I would consider dealing a couple of vets at the deadline for draft picks, guys like Gionta, Kaberle or Bourque. Go for a high pick. Either Mackinnon, Drouin or Jones. If Subban or Markov are not great, be very surprised if Habs are a cup contender anyway. If there is ever any draft to go for the high pick this is the draft. Like the '71 or ' 79 draft. With Lafleurs, Robinsons, Bourques, Messiers types available in 2013 draft.
Benoit Brunet was made of glass. I wouldnt put Markov in that category yet. Add a few more years of injury, then we will talk

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01-11-2013, 11:27 AM
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I'd fully expect the Habs to contend for a playoff spot this year in the last 4 spots.

I think last year was more of an anomoly that was compounded by injuries, strange management decisions and an overall circus atmosphere.

I'd expect with a full healthy line up, Price should be his usual great self, a healthy Markov will take us far, IF PK signs, I'd expect him to have a great year and hopefully take the nexct step to being the d-man he can be, especially if Markov can take the burden of minutes off PK. The rest of our defense is pretty good and not as green as they were last year.

Our forwards are much deeper than last year with the additions of Prust and Armstrong, we're also grittier and more aggressive. If our top line can get close to last years productions, Gionta comes back to form and our grinders grind, I can see a very good 4 lines being rolled night in and out.

We weren't nearly as bad as our record showed last year and I hope we can show that this year. Our summer was too long and I don't want a repeat of that again!

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01-11-2013, 11:36 AM
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Eller has played plenty of time on Wing, probably the majority. It's hard to fault bob for that.
Eller played the majority of the time on the wing?

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01-11-2013, 12:03 PM
  #43
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Originally Posted by DAChampion View Post
If you look around the division for players born in 1989 or later you'll see that every single team has young players that could improve.

Boston has Tyler Seguin, who has significant margin of possible improvement.
Buffalo has Ennis, Myers,
Ottawa has Turris, Karlsson,
Toronto has Kadri, JVR, Gardiner,
and Montreal has... Eller and Subban born in 1989 and not one young player born in 1990 or later with significant possibility of improvement.

We have no more young players poised for improvement than the rest of the division, and the quality is no higher.
I'm not understanding why you've chosen 1989 as some arbitrary cutoff for "Young". Our slightly older young guys like Price, DD, Pacioretty and Emelin have lots of upward room compared to other teams whose players are developing at the same age. And then we have the players born later than 1990 who are currently in the minors and make up what's considered one of the best crop of prospects in the league. Add Galchenyuk, Tinordi, Colberg, Beaulieu, etc. to the mix and yes, we do indeed have a stronger-than-most young core of Habs and Habs-to-be.

Of course, the other end of the equation is how much of the team is on the DOWNside of age. On that score, we're in a better place than teams like Boston (Chara), Ottawa (Alfredsson, Gonchar), NJ (Brodeur).

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01-11-2013, 12:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mats86 View Post
Markov is a piece of glass, they just barely touch him and he is injured. Body is brittle ie Brunet. I wouldn't expect much from him this year.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i0VYCjQtYHs

If Subban doesn't get signed or has another off year, I would consider dealing a couple of vets at the deadline for draft picks, guys like Gionta, Kaberle or Bourque. Go for a high pick. Either Mackinnon, Drouin or Jones. If Subban or Markov are not great, be very surprised if Habs are a cup contender anyway. If there is ever any draft to go for the high pick this is the draft. Like the '71 or ' 79 draft. With Lafleurs, Robinsons, Bourques, Messiers types available in 2013 draft.
Huh... sorry but when did Subban have an off year? Cuz I don't seem to remember that.

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01-11-2013, 12:27 PM
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If team does miss playoffs and play poorly could Terrian job be in trouble?And if Bob Hartley leads Calgary deep in playoffs could this cause friction in Canadien ownership?Considering some people liked Hartley better.
Calgary won't MAKE the playoffs let alone going DEEP in them.

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01-11-2013, 12:38 PM
  #46
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Regardless of Gomez's abysmal play, he is still a highly profiled player and if last season is any indication, management will make use of him. That is what Bobby Mac was eluding to more than whether Gomez deserves a top nine roster spot. How long did we see Gomez floating on the second line last season? Hopefully Galchenyuk cracks the lineup and Gomez becomes forgotten nightmare.

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01-11-2013, 12:46 PM
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What I learned from this is you are married to your opinion and full of yourself as evinced by your final sentence.

Markov had ONE injury that had anything to do with the strength/fragility of his body. ONE. If you want to call that glass you are welcome to your opinion but it doesn't make it truth.

You list the Flyers as a playoff team. Line up their D beside ours. Oh and apparently Briere is glass now. I never blamed injuries and I never said we're an elite team. You named 6 teams as above the Habs and slid the Pariseless Devils with a 40 year old goalie as a maybe. That still leaves a playoff spot and I don't even agree that the Flyers or Devils are shoe ins. McKenzie is more knowledgable than both of us and he thinks our D is ok. Kaberle had .5 ppg last year with us. Is that horrible? He was minus 6 with us, not so bad on a losing team. We're not counting on him for top 4 minutes so no big deal.

Obviously you are stuck to your opinion but I'm not going to roll over and play dead. May I quote you at this point?

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Friendly wager on Markov perhaps? I say he plays more than 40 games and proves many including yourself wrong.
I just lost a wall of text.

In short, I accept your bet, and throw another one. The Devils will have at least 7 points more than the Habs (equivalent to 12pts in a 82games season).

For the Flyers, I just wanted to point out that their forwards are much better (and younger, and bigger, and cheaper) than ours, and you can't deny that Laviolette is better than Therrien. Considering that our fan base blames everything on the coach, this is not negligeable. Also, they get to play 5 times against the Islanders!

Markov played 65 games in the past three seasons. You can claim he is an ironman all you want, but I am going in to this season expecting him to go down at any point.

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01-11-2013, 12:51 PM
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Regardless of Gomez's abysmal play, he is still a highly profiled player and if last season is any indication, management will make use of him. That is what Bobby Mac was eluding to more than whether Gomez deserves a top nine roster spot. How long did we see Gomez floating on the second line last season? Hopefully Galchenyuk cracks the lineup and Gomez becomes forgotten nightmare.
This is pure speculation, but I believe that Bergevin will ask for his buyout targets to have a (other) chance to redeem themselves, even tho it will be almost impossible for Gomez to avoid a buyout, given next years salary situation.

I can't see Bergevin burning one year of Galchenyuk ELC on a short season coming off a 15th place, unless he scores 5 goals in his 6 game tryout.

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01-11-2013, 12:56 PM
  #49
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I want to see how Eller and Bourque do. add improved years from them, a healthy Gionta and Markov and Price playing as well as last year and you have a playoff team. They crap the bed again and we can get a lotto pick in a good year.


Also, I hope to see Nashville and Calgary crap the bed hard, if only to improve the placement for their 2nd rd picks that we have

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01-11-2013, 01:16 PM
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Corky
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Markov not fragile....please...

On another note, I tend to be optimistic with the Habs every off-season because it always seems that on-paper, the team is decent and could surprise. Since I'm a glass half-full kind of guy when it comes to hockey, I tend to overrate them a bit every off-season. The biggest disappointment I ever had with that attitude is the 2008-2009 season where they were supposed to compete for the cup and they ended up barely making the playoffs.

This season is no different than any other. On paper, the D is good but fragile (Markov is fragile, Subban is unsigned and Kaberle is a wildcard), the forward group could surprise with a good mix of speed and grit and Price can play like an all-star goalie for a period of time. Add to the mix Galchenyuk who could contribute. The problem that we have again this year and that we've had for so many years is that we have no gamebreaking talent.

Whatever happens, I won't be disappointed. If we suck, we get a high draft pick in a deep draft and only have to suffer through a short season. Then again, if we're good, you won't hear any complaints from me.

The cherry on top for me is if Gally plays with us for the full 48 games as I'm looking forward to his development as our first star forward player in a very long time (if everything goes well obviously).

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