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The Habs: July 14th 2006

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07-14-2006, 08:01 AM
  #1
Netro
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The Habs: July 14th 2006

Given the recent moves, wanted to evaluate the Habs as of today. Sorry - this is long, I'm bored this morning.

It appears that the lines this season will be:

FORWARDS:
Higgins-Koivu-Ryder
Samsonov-Ribs-Kovalev
Perezhogin-Plekanec-Johnson
Begin-Bonk-Murray

Most likely next in line:
Downey
Kostitsyn
Lapierre

Longshots:
Chipchura
Locke
Latendresse
Grabovski

DEFENCE:
Markov-Komisarek
Souray-Rivet
Bouillion-Dandenault

Next in line:
Streit

GOALIES:
Huet
Abs

Next in line:
Danis

Longshot:
Halak

For the most part, I am comfortable with this line-up heading into the season. Ideally, I would like to see the Habs upgrade the 2nd line centre position. The only way that I see that is via a trade. I don't see Gainey adding salary at this point. I would also like to see the Habs upgrade the defence but truthfully, not sure how. I like each of the 6 d-man individually but as a collective unit of 6, I am not as satisfied. I just think that the only top pairing d-man on this team is Markov. Souray, Rivet and Komisarek are all, at the moment, 2nd pairing dmen. What I also like is that, as BG stated, there is an open spot for a young forward. And, instead of there being only 1 or 2 players fighting for the spot, there are 3 or 4 players..it is nice to see so many people competing for 1 spot, it is a good sign. A true winner will emerge.

Heading into next season, Bonk, Johnson and Ribs, if he lasts this season, become UFA on the forward front. What I like is that a lot of the young players will have another season of professional hockey under their belt. Some will get good exposure in the NHL this year due to injuries. It is reasonable to think that Bonk will be replaced by a combo of Chipchura/Lapierre and that Johnson will be replaced by Kostitsyn. Gainey has put the pieces together neatly and a succession plan is in place.

On the D front, I am going to ignore the whole Souray thing at the moment and dismiss as rumour until something happens. There is a bit of a gap in the system to the next generation of D-men. O'byrne and Emelin, if they sign him, are the closest prospects to the NHL, but as we all know, young d-men take time to integrate into the NHL. Komisarek is a prime example, he only started coming into his own recently. So, after this season, I think Markov, Souray and Rivet all become UFAs. Bouillion and Dandenault are signed and I assume Komisarek will be a RFA after this season. Clearly with the gap in the system, BG will need to resign all his dmen and/or look for assets outside the system. Hopefully, with an increased cap next year, and the money saved on Bonk and Johnson as well as Aebi, there will be some extra cash to improve the D.

In nets, I am all for keeping Abs as insurance to start the season. Personally, I think Huet is the real deal but I see no issue having insurance. Besides, if things go well, Abs could hopefully get a package at the trade deadline similiar to Roloson. Danis should be ready to be a backup by next year and don't forget Halak. All this will allow Price to develop at the proper pace.

So, what does this all mean (IMO):
(a) That so far BG has done well
(b) That the main thing Gainey has to deal with is the 2nd line centre position
(c) Re-signing key dmen will become a priority soon as well as upgrade
(d) There is no urgency to trade Abs

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07-14-2006, 08:07 AM
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Good post...can't really add anything!

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07-14-2006, 08:08 AM
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Great post, while i might nitpick with the lines and want to see a slight change here or there, I agree with everything in your post. BG has really got me excited for training camp.

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07-14-2006, 08:09 AM
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looking at the line up, don't see us getting past 1st round ... unless we face boston.

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07-14-2006, 08:12 AM
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Unless Bonk refinds his touch, I doubt he'll make the team. I would be surprised if he loses his job to a rookie, and sent down to the AHL a la Mogilny. Otherwise, good lines!

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07-14-2006, 08:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forget_The_Past View Post
looking at the line up, don't see us getting past 1st round ... unless we face boston.
We have a better line-up then last year...I don't understand you...

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07-14-2006, 08:20 AM
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Netro
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Couple follow-up points.

(1) If BG is unable to trade Ribs, odds are he lets him walk after the season
(2) If Bonk is beaten out by a rookie, so be it
(3) The east is really competitive, so I think any of the 8 teams that make it will be able to go far in the playoffs

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07-14-2006, 08:21 AM
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After recent aquisitions, I have a sneaking suspision that for the next in line section for the forwards, Ferland would be given a shot ahead of Kostitsyn and Lapierre, mainly because of the waiver issue. Unless Kostitsyn forces his way into the team with phenominal play, I think management would have no problem next season sending him back to Hamilton to play with Grabovski (he had better be used with Grabovski) As for Lapierre, him and Ferland are similar-ish (4th line, play with an edge) players, one has to deal with the waiver issue, one doesn't, the one who does is older. I can only imagine that Ferland gets a chance to show if he belongs or not while Lapierre is given more time to develop, as per normal. Then again, management may make a decision on him out of camp (although unlikely).

Otherwise, can't really add anything else and I agree with a lot of what you wrote.

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07-14-2006, 08:24 AM
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Ferland to me has not looked NHL ready. I think they may take a chance on sending him down on waivers. He is playing a position we have a glut of right now, and we can always find more. Gritty, 4th line, shutdown guys with little offence. We have Begin and Murray already on the Big Club. Downey in the pressbox. Lapierre in the system too (looked better than Feland in the AHL).

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Old
07-14-2006, 08:28 AM
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Mike8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dumitru123 View Post
Unless Bonk refinds his touch, I doubt he'll make the team. I would be surprised if he loses his job to a rookie, and sent down to the AHL a la Mogilny. Otherwise, good lines!
That's an interesting point.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but if Bonk's sent to the minors his salary wouldn't count against the cap, would it?

I know in Mogilny's case it did count against the cap, but I believe that was due to his age (being over 35), whereas McGillis, who was also sent down to the AHL, did not have his salary count against the cap.

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07-14-2006, 08:29 AM
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there's 2 thing that bothers me alot

1. having Ribeiro and Bonk still in the line-up, there useless

2. Kostytsin not in the line-up. how can we have such a promissing prospect and not have room for him?

Samsonov-Johnson-Kovy
Perezhogin-Pleckanek-Kostytsin
Bégin-Lappierre/Chipchura-Murray

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Old
07-14-2006, 08:39 AM
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Netro
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcel the great! View Post
there's 2 thing that bothers me alot

1. having Ribeiro and Bonk still in the line-up, there useless

2. Kostytsin not in the line-up. how can we have such a promissing prospect and not have room for him?

Samsonov-Johnson-Kovy
Perezhogin-Pleckanek-Kostytsin
Bégin-Lappierre/Chipchura-Murray
You don't hand a rookie like Kostitsyn a spot. You make him earn it and if does, great.

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Old
07-14-2006, 08:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcel the great! View Post
there's 2 thing that bothers me alot

1. having Ribeiro and Bonk still in the line-up, there useless

2. Kostytsin not in the line-up. how can we have such a promissing prospect and not have room for him?

Samsonov-Johnson-Kovy
Perezhogin-Pleckanek-Kostytsin
Bégin-Lappierre/Chipchura-Murray
there's 2 thing that bothers me alot...me too..

Bonk...blablablablablabla
Ribeiro...blablablablablabla

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Old
07-14-2006, 09:12 AM
  #14
Fozz
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I'm not big on line numbers but if people insist on putting the Habs lines in order, it's time to make the switch...

Whether you like it or not, it's not:

Higgins-Koivu-Ryder
Samsonov-Ribs-Kovalev

But:

Samsonov-Ribs-Kovalev
Higgins-Koivu-Ryder

People can't complain about Ribeiro being the number 2 center anymore, because he is effectively the team's number one center since he centers the number one line!

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Old
07-14-2006, 09:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fozz View Post
People can't complain about Ribeiro being the number 2 center anymore, because he is effectively the team's number one center since he centers the number one line!
Those lines are mere speculation, through training camp there will be plenty of movement and shaking up of lines before day 1 of the season, I'm sure

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07-14-2006, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fozz View Post
I'm not big on line numbers but if people insist on putting the Habs lines in order, it's time to make the switch...

Whether you like it or not, it's not:

Higgins-Koivu-Ryder
Samsonov-Ribs-Kovalev

But:

Samsonov-Ribs-Kovalev
Higgins-Koivu-Ryder

People can't complain about Ribeiro being the number 2 center anymore, because he is effectively the team's number one center since he centers the number one line!
Hmmm, I'd rather have
Samsonov-Koivu-Kovalev
Higgins-Ribs-Ryder

But I think that's a weak 2nd line.

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Old
07-14-2006, 09:26 AM
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My speculation for lines

Higgins - Koivu - Kovalev
Samsonov - Ribs - Ryder
Perez - Pleks - Johnson
Begin - Bonk - Murray

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07-14-2006, 09:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fozz View Post
People can't complain about Ribeiro being the number 2 center anymore, because he is effectively the team's number one center since he centers the number one line!
Not really, considering Ryder and Higgins' goal production last year.

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07-14-2006, 09:50 AM
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First, I think that Kosty will make the team.

Regarding the Bonk waived down to Hamilton, I am fairly sure and can confirm shortly that his salary would not count against the cap. Mogilny's did not last year, He will this year, because in any subsequent year the player's salary counts regardless if he is in the NHL or the minors. Bonk has no remaining years after this one thus, I don't think he would count, but I will attempt to verify once i a chance today.

I think that Carbo wants to give Ribeiro one more shot believing that he can turn him into a player. I do think that he will be sorely disapointed at the end of the season and Carbo will throw in the towel and ask BG to trade or not re-sign him

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07-14-2006, 09:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forget_The_Past View Post
looking at the line up, don't see us getting past 1st round ... unless we face boston.
The reason being? Can you give reasons?...arguments? give inputs on to wich team we cant beat? I dont mind that opinion...but it needs substance.

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07-14-2006, 09:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoHabsGO252006 View Post
First, I think that Kosty will make the team.

Regarding the Bonk waived down to Hamilton, I am fairly sure and can confirm shortly that his salary would not count against the cap. Mogilny's did not last year, He will this year, because in any subsequent year the player's salary counts regardless if he is in the NHL or the minors. Bonk has no remaining years after this one thus, I don't think he would count, but I will attempt to verify once i a chance today.

I think that Carbo wants to give Ribeiro one more shot believing that he can turn him into a player. I do think that he will be sorely disapointed at the end of the season and Carbo will throw in the towel and ask BG to trade or not re-sign him
I believe he counts this year due to his age. After a certain age guys in the minors count. Kinda like how Andreychuk is on the Bolts books this year too.

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07-14-2006, 09:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dumitru123 View Post
Unless Bonk refinds his touch, I doubt he'll make the team. I would be surprised if he loses his job to a rookie, and sent down to the AHL a la Mogilny. Otherwise, good lines!
I hope we dont do that because he'll count against the cap next year if I remember correctly. Like Andreychuck in tampa.

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07-14-2006, 09:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kernkraft View Post
Hmmm, I'd rather have
Samsonov-Koivu-Kovalev
Higgins-Ribs-Ryder

But I think that's a weak 2nd line.
Why would you consider spliting up Koivu and Higgins?

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07-14-2006, 09:59 AM
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I hope we dont do that because he'll count against the cap next year if I remember correctly. Like Andreychuck in tampa.
Bonk is UFA after this season, so why would he count against next years cap.
Andreychuk signed a two year deal prior to last season. Thats why he counts.

I also think its an age thing.

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07-14-2006, 10:00 AM
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I think Gainey knew what type or style of team he had and wanted to be a little,bigger, a little more pro active on the physical side. he couldn't do it for different reasons. He was able to keep the same style team but upgrade over the players who didn't buy in to the system. I think Sams is better than Zednik, Johnson and Bullis, well maybe by the #'s, Johnson may be a bit better, in effect it's also Murray over Sundstrom. So, the team's better. It's not what many of us and the org. wants to see as a finsihed product, but it gives a bit more depth.

The Chips,Kost. and Lats. of the org. will have to win jobs with their play, nothing or no one gets a job because it seemed like a good idea at the time.

Fozz, I think that if the line you refer to as #1 scores at a better than goal a game clip, you will see different roles for some players. Koivu's role is evolving imo, if playing against the Sundin's and Spezza's allows Carbo to look for matchups that the other line can exploit, so be it.

I've got no problem with that. Let's not get bent out of shape if his #'s diminish though. I hope Koivu stays with Higgins,no matter what happens with the rw'ers, it's a nice pair to have that can play in any situation.


So, I think the team is a bit better. If someone beats out a vet in camp, great. I don't know how to rate the rest of the league though. The Canes showed us that how a team jells has more to do with winning than how a team looks in August.

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