Kostitsyn played a total of 2:23 in the first period after scoring the first goal....Where's the accountability he's been talking about exactly? IDK Kaberle with the Icing, Gomez in the shootout, Leblanc+A.Kost on the 4th line, In the words of Ricky from Trailer Park Boys, this team is f**kd
- play the top-3 lines relatively even minutes (at least through 2 periods, go with "hot hands" in 3rd), 4th line ~10-12min/game. Hold all players to same standard, play hard = get minutes, play soft = glued to the bench (kaberle may need to wear extra padding on his arse to avoid splinters, but so be it)
- make it clear to young players, and everyone else, that they are playing for their jobs for next season, but otherwise give them longer "leashes", accepting a degree of mistakes (so long as effort/intensity/focus in games & practices is consistent)
at this point, odds of RC returning are pretty slim-to-none. to his benefit, I think most knowledgable hockey people (or anyone who hasn't had their head in the sand), knows that he was put into a bogus situation by his GM. Even if the team continues losing or losing even more as a result of playing the "kids" more minutes, as long as his team competes hard every night, I think he can walk away feeling good about getting another shot as a HC eventually.
Habs need to focus on development and view remainder of the season as a chance for young guys to get experience free from the huge pressure of expectations, which are or should be just about done at this point.
~30 games, should give the young guys plenty of time to reach a degree of comfort and start to really put on display what level they are ready to compete at... giving our next GM a better gauge of what he has to work with in the offseason/next year.