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A look at Next Season

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Old
07-16-2017, 10:00 PM
  #1
montreal
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A look at Next Season

The big question as of today is management done? If they are then what happens to the Habs next season, if they are healthy especially to Price then they should be a playoff team for sure but beyond that it's very hard to figure how this roster can compete with the Pens and other top teams. Here's my look at what we should expect from the roster and other thoughts/questions.


Forwards -
Max Pacioretty - He's our go to goal scorer, since he had 13 more goals then the next highest and that has to change. He can't be the only goal scorer, yet last year we had only 1 other player with more then 18 goals. That's terrible. The good news is that over the last 3 years, Pac has scored 34 goals on ave, 66 pts.

Alex Galchenyuk - Lots of questions and concerns with Galchenyuk. Had he not gotten injured, he may have ended up our best player. The problem is where he fits in on Julien's team. Is he a center or winger? Last year he missed 21 games after missing only 2 in the previous 2 seasons. Last year was the first time he failed to hit a career high in points as he's done in each and every year although he finished the year on pace for 59 pts which would have been a career high. Now we need to see how it's going to go next season. Can he break out and be a 70 point player?

Paul Byron - In his first season with the Habs he was on pace for 24 pts which would have been a career high. Then last season at 27 he breaks out and scores 22 goals after having a career high in points of 21. Very rare to see a 27 year old breakout like that by scoring more goals then he's ever had points. Now the question is what happens to him next season. Expect him to score 22 is a bit much, but the Habs will need to score since he was 2nd on the team in goals last year. The good news is he can bounce all around the lineup and not hurt the team as his speed is such an asset to any line.

Phillip Danault - Like Byron had a breakout year scoring more goals then he had in points in his short NHL career. Danault had a great season, the question is how will he do next year and how much more can he progress? He's got the speed and defensive play to be on any line and help. If he can build off his 40 pt season he becomes a solid 2nd line center.

Andrew Shaw - He takes a lot of crap around here but only 5 forwards had more points. He was on pace for 35 pts last season. He needs to stay healthy and learn to cut down on the stupid pims but he should be good for 14/15 goals and around 30 points.

Brendan Gallagher - Gallagher just turned 25 2 months ago but is coming off a very poor season that saw him score just 10 goals after getting 19 in 53 games the previous season. The concern now is that the injuries are catching up to him as he's missed 47 games over the last 2 years after missing just 1 game the previous 2 years. The troubling thing is in 11 more games he scored half the goals and 11 less points then the previous year. He's got to find a way to get back on track. Maybe he never scores 30 goals, but we desperately need him to get 20 or more next year and stay healthy. If he can put up anything close to 50 pts that would be huge.

Artturi Lehkonen - The rookie had some rough patches at times but still ended up with 18 g and 28 pts, if he continues to improve then maybe we are looking at him getting around 40 pts and that would help a good bit. Lehkonen can play all 3 forward positions and brings effort, skill and energy to any line he's put on. Habs could have a real nice find on their hands if he can continue to progress since he just turned 22 a week ago. Going to be very interesting to see what the future holds for him with the Habs.

Tomas Plekanec - Now that DD is gone he's got to be among the most hated Habs by the board along with Shaw. It wouldn't be so bad if he didn't have a 6M cap hit but just 2 more points last year and only 5 forwards would have outproduced him and he was terrible for much of the year offensively. He'll be 34 a few weeks into the season so you have to wonder if he's reaching the end of the line in his hockey career. It's too bad his game fell off a cliff as he had a solid career with the Habs, never missing much time at all (he's missed just 13 games in his entire career since being a full time hab, holy ****!) consistently putting up 20 or so goals, 3 times 60+ pts. But man did his game fall apart. In the previous 2 seasons he had a solid ave of 57 pts, then last year he couldn't even hit 30 pts. I am scared to think what he will produce this season, if there's anything left in the tank and he can find his way to put up a little more offense then last year it will help but not counting on it.

Torrey Mitchell - Mitchell's been a solid pickup for a 7th round pick. He's been surprisingly healthy and he's put up ok numbers for a 4th liner. He works hard and is smart, the problem is after a hot start he couldn't buy a goal. Still think he can be a decent asset to the team even if he's no longer an every day player but we'll see how camp goes.

Jonathan Drouin - The Habs paid a steep price in their top prospect and he gets 6.5M in salary to go with his 5.5M cap hit. Management is clearly banking on him to be the next local star with the Habs and with his speed, skill they may have hit big on this one. There's no telling just how good he will be and how much it will mean to have such a highly skilled playmaker with great speed on the team. There are concerns of course, how will he fit in CJ's system, local pressure from fans/media to carry the offense and live up to the hype/contract. Woudn't be surprised at all if he's a 70+ point player in the NHL very soon.

Ales Hemsky - He turns 34 in a few weeks and played in only 15 games last season. At 1M he can go to the AHL and have very little impact on the cap. That said if he can stay healthy he's got the speed and skill to hopefully put up 30-40 pts. I'm interested to see what he can do if he's healthy as he can setup plays. Might be a good linemate for Pleks to help get his game going if possible.

Jacob de la Rose - I list him since I think he makes the team. I think CJ will be a fan as the kid works hard, has the size, skating, speed and defensive game that looks way more mature then someone just turning 22 2 months ago. The question will always been about his offensive game and what he can do in the NHL. In the past he was brought up too soon and then got the yo-yo treatment. he's started out very slowly the past 2 years in the AHL and he might not have that luxury this time around. That said there's a lot to like about him as a possible 4th line center/winger if he can make the cut. Will help out the PK and you can count on him in your own end when trying to protect those 1 goal leads which may be very common this season.

Andreas Martinsen - He brings size and a physical game that may come in handy on nights when we face bigger, more physical teams. He's more likely to be a press box player or in the AHL if someone steals his spot. I know when the Habs traded for him, it was said they liked his game and felt he had some untapped upside or something to that effect said during one of the first few games he played. We'll see if he can help the team or not.

Michael McCarron - As much as I would prefer for him to be in the AHL working on his offensive game, I feel CJ will keep him around and use him as a 4th line energy guy. It's a shame cause I do think he has some offensive abilities as he can pass and is good at scoring in tight around the crease. I wish they hadn't called him up these past few times as I still have high hopes that he can turn into a solid NHLer but hopefully more then a 4th line grinder.

Charles Hudon- won't be easy for Hudon to make the team, he's going to have to show that his skills/smarts can overcome his lack of speed, skating, size and strength. That's a lot to overcome, so far he's produced at every level but until we see him in a decent amount of NHL games it's anyone's guess as to what he can be in the NHL. He's a massive wild card for the season though imo, if he can produce at a good clip in the NHL that would be huge. he would give us cheap depth and he's got a solid 2 way game although he's clearly better in the offensive zone. I have said I'd like to see him with Danault as his speed/defensive game would really help Hudon who can get the puck to players anywhere in the offensive zone but also can score on his own. But the problem is he would need to show a ton in order to get time with Danault who is one of our best forwards as of now.

I'll finish with more later....

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07-16-2017, 10:08 PM
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I think Lehkonen will score 25 goals and 40 points this season. I'm not too sure we have a 70-point scorer this season, though, but if he's given a proper chance, I can see Galchenyuk (along with Drouin) leading the team in points with Pacioretty still leading in goals.

Hopefully Drouin can produce ES, though, because our powerplay won't be as strong as Tampa's was where he got nearly 50% of his points last season.

I don't see Byron sustaining his SH% from last season even though it was so high because most of them were on the breakaway. I think most teams would know now that his speed alone makes him dangerous. I still see him scoring 15 though.

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07-16-2017, 10:32 PM
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If the team has internal improvment and bounc back years from some of its players they can be a pretty good team.

Galley needs to get 20+. And Pleks won't ever bounce back but if he can get closer to 40 pts then 30 thats good enough.

AG needs to return to his 30 goal form from 2 years ago and Drouin needs to take the next step and get 30 G or 60+ pts.

Danault and Lek are still young if they can improve on last season that would round out the top 6 very nicely.

Is there a wild card? MaCarron/JDLR/Hemsky/Hudon ?

Big gamble on lots of guys stepping up this year. Reminds me a lot of 2015 when MB's big summer was Semin + Kassian. I can see this team being short on depth if it suffers some injuries or a few more players have down years.

The CJ factor is underrated. If MT had such a horrible effect on the team than lets see what kind of effect Julien will have. The roster now is in some places better than what MT had to work with. I think forward wise maybe only last year MT had a better team up front and he didn't even coach the full season.

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07-17-2017, 06:00 AM
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With $9m in cap, there's no way we're done. Likely wait until closer to the season when teams have to get below cap, players released if RFA arbitration is too rich, unsigned UFA's on the cheap etc.

Point is this isn't the finished project yet so I'm not willing to give a post mortem yet.

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07-17-2017, 07:21 AM
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I'm looking for improvements from our 25 and under players. There will be surprises and their will be players who fall off the radar.

Age 25: Gallagher, Shaw, Davidson, Carr

Age 24: Danault, Morrow

Age 23: Galchenyuk, Hudon

Age 22: Drouin, Lehkonen, McCarron, DLR

Age 21: Scherbak, Lernout, Waked, Audette, Gregoire

Age 20: Juulsen, Addison, Bourque, McNiven

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07-17-2017, 07:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Habaholicgolfer View Post
I'm looking for improvements from our 25 and under players. There will be surprises and their will be players who fall off the radar.

Age 25: Gallagher, Shaw, Davidson, Carr

Age 24: Danault, Morrow

Age 23: Galchenyuk, Hudon

Age 22: Drouin, Lehkonen, McCarron, DLR

Age 21: Scherbak, Lernout, Waked, Audette, Gregoire

Age 20: Juulsen, Addison, Bourque, McNiven
Lol..so you think some players will improve, and some others won't...
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Last edited by Frenchy: 07-17-2017 at 07:48 AM. Reason: stop that
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07-17-2017, 07:53 AM
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Lol..so you think some players will improve, and some others won't...
[MOD]
Yes, I'm expecting our 25 and under players to develop and improve. I'm also expecting some surprises. My point was that I'm interesting in watching how our age 25 and under players develop. This is key to the Habs success IMO.

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07-17-2017, 07:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Habaholicgolfer View Post
Yes, I'm expecting our 25 and under players to develop and improve. I'm also expecting some surprises. My point was that I'm interesting in watching how our age 25 and under players develop. This is key to the Habs success IMO.
It was a joke.
Yes, it will be interesting to see how our younger guys grow.

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07-17-2017, 07:57 AM
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Andrew Shaw - He takes a lot of crap around here but only 5 forwards had more points. He was on pace for 35 pts last season. He needs to stay healthy and learn to cut down on the stupid pims but he should be good for 14/15 goals and around 30 points.

Charles Hudon- won't be easy for Hudon to make the team, he's going to have to show that his skills/smarts can overcome his lack of speed, skating, size and strength. That's a lot to overcome, so far he's produced at every level but until we see him in a decent amount of NHL games it's anyone's guess as to what he can be in the NHL. He's a massive wild card for the season though imo, if he can produce at a good clip in the NHL that would be huge. he would give us cheap depth and he's got a solid 2 way game although he's clearly better in the offensive zone. I have said I'd like to see him with Danault as his speed/defensive game would really help Hudon who can get the puck to players anywhere in the offensive zone but also can score on his own. But the problem is he would need to show a ton in order to get time with Danault who is one of our best forwards as of now.
Great read and very balanced analysis. Thanks! I quoted two players who deserve commentary.

Your take on Shaw deserves to be repeated since he was the subject of some of the worst analysis on this board. His downside is obvious -- he was way overpenalized and continues to be somewhat overpaid. But he is a valuable forward with a proven track record in the playoffs. Anyone pointing to his four/five playoff games as an accurate summary is simply uninformed or looking for an argument.

Your judgment of Hudon scares the crap out of me. All he has to do is overcome a lack of skating, size, speed and strength. Aside from that, how did you like the play, Mrs. Lincoln?

If he's our most hopeful prospect it really underlines the developmental mess the team is in.

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07-17-2017, 08:02 AM
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It was a joke.
Yes, it will be interesting to see how our younger guys grow.
It's the only way this team is going to improve. We may be making a trade for a #1C (we will see) but improving our team through free agency or trades is extremely hard to do. Our success lies with the younger core. IMO, there is some reasons to be optimistic but there are holes to fill. Can these kids improve any further? That's the big question

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07-17-2017, 08:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Habaholicgolfer View Post
It's the only way this team is going to improve. We may be making a trade for a #1C (we will see) but improving our team through free agency or trades is extremely hard to do. Our success lies with the younger core. IMO, there is some reasons to be optimistic but there are holes to fill. Can these kids improve any further? That's the big question
No doubt they will improve, but the real question is will they be able to keep up and produce with the likes of Eichel & co, Matthews & co, Laine & Scheifele & co, McDavid & Draisaitl, & co, etc.

Sure helps learning the trade and playing with super talented centers - something we have not had for way too long.

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07-17-2017, 09:00 AM
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The only positive I see about our forward corps is we have one extra potential offense player. Hemsky and Drouin replaced Radulov. But we really should have beaten, not matched, Dallas' offer to keep Radulov. We'd be so much better with him in the lineup.

But it sounds to me like Radulov wanted to play with Seguin and Benn and he didn't like the way our team was so poor offensively last year.

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07-17-2017, 09:09 AM
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The big question as of today is management done? If they are then what happens to the Habs next season, if they are healthy especially to Price then they should be a playoff team for sure but beyond that it's very hard to figure how this roster can compete with the Pens and other top teams. Here's my look at what we should expect from the roster and other thoughts/questions.


Forwards -


Andrew Shaw - He takes a lot of crap around here but only 5 forwards had more points. He was on pace for 35 pts last season. He needs to stay healthy and learn to cut down on the stupid pims but he should be good for 14/15 goals and around 30 points.


Charles Hudon- won't be easy for Hudon to make the team, he's going to have to show that his skills/smarts can overcome his lack of speed, skating, size and strength. That's a lot to overcome, so far he's produced at every level but until we see him in a decent amount of NHL games it's anyone's guess as to what he can be in the NHL. He's a massive wild card for the season though imo, if he can produce at a good clip in the NHL that would be huge. he would give us cheap depth and he's got a solid 2 way game although he's clearly better in the offensive zone. I have said I'd like to see him with Danault as his speed/defensive game would really help Hudon who can get the puck to players anywhere in the offensive zone but also can score on his own. But the problem is he would need to show a ton in order to get time with Danault who is one of our best forwards as of now.

I'll finish with more later....

I think you're take on Hudon is spot on. I just hope he sticks with the team, probably starting on the 4th line. But Julien likes size on the 4th line so that doesn't bode well for him. Hickey thinks, based on his sources, that McCarron is a lock to be in the top 12. But I'd really like to see Hudon get a regular shift and fill in in the top 9 when there are injuries. I think he has talent, although as you say his size and skating are concerns. But I think he's a much better skater than Corey Locke was and has much better hockey sense than Aaron Palushaj.

I don't think we gave Ghetto enough time with offensive players and I could see the same happening to Hudon.

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07-17-2017, 09:24 AM
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Andrew Shaw - He takes a lot of crap around here but only 5 forwards had more points. He was on pace for 35 pts last season. He needs to stay healthy and learn to cut down on the stupid pims but he should be good for 14/15 goals and around 30 points.
And this right there highlights the kind of trouble we're in. We desperately need some more talent here. Drouin was a great move but it's largely negated by losing Radulov. I'm dumbfounded at how we go into every season without improving the forward (specifically the center) position. Something HAS to be done before the fall.

Just looking at the names on our roster, I don't see how any team would be scared to play against us. There's just not nearly enough skill here.

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07-17-2017, 09:32 AM
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But it sounds to me like Radulov wanted to play with Seguin and Benn and he didn't like the way our team was so poor offensively last year.
i think rad wanted to play ANYWHERE but montreal,

i believe the same goes for markov,

players are jumping ship now, before it hits the inevitable bottom

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07-17-2017, 09:34 AM
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No doubt they will improve, but the real question is will they be able to keep up and produce with the likes of Eichel & co, Matthews & co, Laine & Scheifele & co, McDavid & Draisaitl, & co, etc.

Sure helps learning the trade and playing with super talented centers - something we have not had for way too long.
Galchenyuk and Drouin can be a very dynamic duo for us and they are only age 22 and 23. Learn to live with what you have and build around it. The truth is we don't have elite level depth at center but it's not reason to give up hope. This team is well build and every year is different. There is no definite formula for success.

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07-17-2017, 09:37 AM
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Learn to live with what you have and build around it.
because thats worked so well for us in the past?

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07-17-2017, 09:39 AM
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Galchenyuk and Drouin can be a very dynamic duo for us and they are only age 22 and 23. Learn to live with what you have and build around it. The truth is we don't have elite level depth at center but it's not reason to give up hope. This team is well build and every year is different. There is no definite formula for success.
Galchenyuk should be so much further ahead than he is. I'm amazed that we're actually coming back with him after the way he was used last year. He's obviously the most talented center we have.

As for those who felt we've given him a chance at center... he has fewer career faceoffs than the Patrice Bergeron had faceoffs last year. That has to change. Unfortunately I don't see it working with him and CJ.

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07-17-2017, 09:41 AM
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because thats worked so well for us in the past?
Did we have Drouin? You can give up on the Habs if you want but the past does not equal the future. Heading into last year, the "doomsday" predictors said we were barely a playoff team and we won our division but ran into scoring problems and a very good goaltender in the playoffs. Also, our best young player (Galchenyuk) was not at his best and who knows if he was 100% past his knee injury.

New season, New players, New Coach for the entire year, and $9M+ cap space to improve our team further. We are not doomed! Get real

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07-17-2017, 09:45 AM
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Galchenyuk should be so much further ahead than he is. I'm amazed that we're actually coming back with him after the way he was used last year. He's obviously the most talented center we have.

As for those who felt we've given him a chance at center... he has fewer career faceoffs than the Patrice Bergeron had faceoffs last year. That has to change. Unfortunately I don't see it working with him and CJ.
I think if we had decent depth at center and Pleky didn't decline so bad, Galchenyuk would of developed better as we would of been able to shelter him better. However, I am not sure if he is a center or winger but I have no issues with trying him at both again. Julien is going to manage and communicate way more better than MT did IMO.

Galchenyuk has something to prove after how the last few months ended last season. He signed the 3 year deal instead of forcing arbitration so this means he has bough in to what the team is telling him. Lets see how one more year of experience helps him.

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07-17-2017, 09:51 AM
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Galchenyuk should be so much further ahead than he is. I'm amazed that we're actually coming back with him after the way he was used last year. He's obviously the most talented center we have.

As for those who felt we've given him a chance at center... he has fewer career faceoffs than the Patrice Bergeron had faceoffs last year. That has to change. Unfortunately I don't see it working with him and CJ.
It's hard to say what CJ will do. As you say, AG is our most talented center. Having not obtained a top 6 C in the off-season, I think it will be hard not to play AG as either 1C or 1aC even if CJ doesn't like him defensively. Who else is there?

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07-17-2017, 10:01 AM
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Did we have Drouin?
so what, drouin replaces rad, big deal, thats no improvement,

defense is also way worse

as yourself this,

is somebody offered you this trade at last years deadline, would you do it?

Sergachev + Radulov for JD

cause thats basically what happened

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07-17-2017, 10:08 AM
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so what, drouin replaces rad, big deal, thats no improvement,

defense is also way worse

as yourself this,

is somebody offered you this trade at last years deadline, would you do it?

Sergachev + Radulov for JD

cause thats basically what happened

It's a bit more complicated than that. Radulov wanted more money than Bergevin thought was right to spend, given the cap situation going forward.

However, I was in favor of giving Radulov 5 years at 7 million per year. He was our heart and soul last year. It was worth the risk imo. Radulov's play over the next few years will dictate that. I would have signed him for 5, with the plan of trading him after two years, while his value as an asset was still high ( I would hope, no guarantees).

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07-17-2017, 10:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Habaholicgolfer View Post
Yes, I'm expecting our 25 and under players to develop and improve. I'm also expecting some surprises. My point was that I'm interesting in watching how our age 25 and under players develop. This is key to the Habs success IMO.
how dare you make such a prediction on HFBoards, you forgot rule 101,
every other team young players improve , however ours do not!
Any statement to the contrary is considered blasphemy, and punishable by .....

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07-17-2017, 10:50 AM
  #25
scrubadam
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I am looking forward to how CJ plays his players.

MT rode Pleks and Max as much as he could. Those 2 were always the team's top forwards as far as ice time. Finally Pleks minutes were reduced last year but only after he was totally flopping.

So will CJ use these guys less? Whoever was tied to Max's hip usually just got extra playing time (see Danault or DD). Maybe not so much with CJ.

Is CJ just MT V.2 here or are we looking at a guy who will coach the team differently. Last summer I was told everything wrong with the team was on MT and DD. Neither are here this year that should automatically take the team from bottom third to middle of the pack or better no?

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