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It's Gameday!!!! 7:30PM on RDS, TSN2 and 98.5 FM, AM 690


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8 hours ago, HabsAlways said:

I mean I'm not deluded into thinking they'll compete for anything higher than wildcard at best, but they didn't actually stink like they did for most of last seaon

 

I can't really put too much stock in an exhibition game against a mid-pack team that left half its players at home for another game the same night. Our guys managed three goals against a no-name 5th-string goaltender, one of which was scored by Hudon from the corner as he was falling over. So hard to say. There were definitely some guys who played well, like Hudon, Juulsen, Kotkaniemi, Chaput, and Mete. The issue I have is that there were also guys who aren't that good, like Schlemko, Alzner, and Plekanec, who didn't show me anything but who are virtual locks to end up with roster spots nonetheless. And so the roster problems are going to be the same as last year: weak centers being asked to learn the position at the NHL level (Domi, Drouin, Kotkaniemi, Suzuki, etc.) or being asked to play a role above what they're cut out for (Danault, Plekanec, etc.); and a D weighed down by slow, past-prime defencemen. Yes, we have some exciting, fast, talented wingers, but we lost our two best goal-scorers and haven't really replaced them goal-wise. So I'm simply not liking the make-up of this team very much. If Carey plays like we know he can, then we'll certainly have a better record than last year. But if you ask me, the best thing MB can do to help this team is cut Alzner, Schlemko, and maybe Benn. I'm not sure he has enough horses left in the barn to be able to, but I'd rather see Mete, Juulsen, Lernout, Ouellet, Valiev, Brook, etc than see another year of guys who can't skate. Can't skate, can't play in the NHL. Having weak spots like that will burn you every time, no matter how good your top end is, and our top end is not that top end any more either.

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12 hours ago, BigTed3 said:

Problem is that even if Carey's great, we're probably battling for a playoff spot at best. With this defence, we have zero chance of making a Cup run, and if that's the case, the question is whether it is worth losing a top pick to go out in the first round or just miss the post-season.

As for tonight's game, the guys who we thought would look good looked good... Juulsen, Mete, Hudon, Lehkonen... Tatar and Chaput and Kotkaniemi also played well. Who was disappointing? Alzner and especially Schlemko looked really slow and off, just like last year. And Plekanec didn't create very much, which is concerning because he's eating a line-up spot that could be better-used by giving experience to a younger player. I don't think Plekanec should be a lock to get a roster spot, but I think he's going to be gifted one because of his history here.

Oh i agree wholeheartedly.  Its going to take an MVP season from Price, some career years from some of our complimentary players and a masterful job from Julien & Co. to make us even a bubble wildcard team.   Is it better to #loseforHughes?  probably.  But I do think that this season is hard to predict.  Up front we clearly have no true #1 line but you could argue we have the makings of two #2 lines and two #3 lines.   The biggest problem is on the blueline where, as you mentioned, guys like Alzner and Schlemko and Benn etc are going to be playing over their heads and really hurting us.


I really hope MB continues to move out older players for picks or prospects. Dump Schlemko, dump Benn (we're probably stuck with Alzner) and get some futures for them.  Id rather see 100 mistakes from Mete and Juulsen this year than 50 from Benn or Schlemko because the latter have both reached (and are presumably coming down from) their ceilings. 

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14 minutes ago, maas_art said:

Oh i agree wholeheartedly.  Its going to take an MVP season from Price, some career years from some of our complimentary players and a masterful job from Julien & Co. to make us even a bubble wildcard team.   Is it better to #loseforHughes?  probably.  But I do think that this season is hard to predict.  Up front we clearly have no true #1 line but you could argue we have the makings of two #2 lines and two #3 lines.   The biggest problem is on the blueline where, as you mentioned, guys like Alzner and Schlemko and Benn etc are going to be playing over their heads and really hurting us.


I really hope MB continues to move out older players for picks or prospects. Dump Schlemko, dump Benn (we're probably stuck with Alzner) and get some futures for them.  Id rather see 100 mistakes from Mete and Juulsen this year than 50 from Benn or Schlemko because the latter have both reached (and are presumably coming down from) their ceilings. 

Agreed. I'd rather live with young guys making mistakes than older guys who aren't improving along any type of a learning curve. The problem with Bergevin is that we've gone down this road many times before. We sat through Murray-Bouillon for a full season while Beaulieu, Tinordi, and Pateryn languished behind them. The end result was a lull in development for those young players. We've seen the team go back to the well with players like Desharnais and Plekanec and Emelin and Markov and Briere and Flynn and Moen and so on instead of giving younger, faster, more skilled players a shot behind them. Imagine if we had given Lars Eller a real shot as a #2 center instead of sticking him with bums or playing on the wing off and on. Imagine if we had given Andrighetto a shot in the top 9 instead of turning to Brian Flynn. Imagine if we had given Charles Hudon a better shot instead of trading for Dwight King and Steve Ott and Andreas Martinsen.

Bergevin has shown over and over that he doesn't prioritize development over winning now. If he did, he never would have re-signed Plekanec to take time away from the likes of DLR, Evans, Hudon, or so on. He wouldn't be holding on to Shea Weber like he'll set the ship straight for another 5-7 years. He would have demoted Schlemko and/or Alzner and/or Benn last year and given us more youngsters... more Lernout, more Juulsen, a shot for Gelinas. He would have played Galchenyuk at center instead of fumbling around with veterans and 4th liners in the top 6 center roles. There is zero indication Bergevin has learned anything positive about how to develop players, and the fans and media are right: the presence of over-the-hill veterans who are too slow for the game is killing us, not only now but in terms of our future.

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game one of preseason play lots of new faces and sadly some old ones who should not be on the ice. what stood out for me most was overall team play with so many new and untried faces the d was more composed than even late in the year last season JJ was a dumpster fire as a D coach! if we could dump a couple of our flat footed Dmen and get a youngster or two in the lineup to get some seasoning we would be fair i think, not good or great but fair. i like most would rather live with mistakes by younger players who are hungry and have upside than retreads or players that are just worn out, if Plecky was here just to hit his # then gone i would be ok with that but we all know that is not the plan! i really liked what i saw from our new draft pick from this year he looked good probably not ready yet but you could see he is a real smart player with some nice moves and i like that C.J  let the boys just play the game i think it was good for  the team to shake off all the negatives from last season and the off season. and you know what it was pretty fun to watch for a change.

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1 hour ago, ramcharger440 said:

game one of preseason play lots of new faces and sadly some old ones who should not be on the ice. what stood out for me most was overall team play with so many new and untried faces the d was more composed than even late in the year last season JJ was a dumpster fire as a D coach! if we could dump a couple of our flat footed Dmen and get a youngster or two in the lineup to get some seasoning we would be fair i think, not good or great but fair. i like most would rather live with mistakes by younger players who are hungry and have upside than retreads or players that are just worn out, if Plecky was here just to hit his # then gone i would be ok with that but we all know that is not the plan! i really liked what i saw from our new draft pick from this year he looked good probably not ready yet but you could see he is a real smart player with some nice moves and i like that C.J  let the boys just play the game i think it was good for  the team to shake off all the negatives from last season and the off season. and you know what it was pretty fun to watch for a change.

I do wonder how much Ducharme and Richardson will help.  I know that Julien is boss but i get the sense he does delegate some important roles & those 2 sure seem a lot more qualified than the guys we let go.  Lets hope it translates to the ice, especially with the youngsters. 

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1 hour ago, ramcharger440 said:

game one of preseason play lots of new faces and sadly some old ones who should not be on the ice. what stood out for me most was overall team play with so many new and untried faces the d was more composed than even late in the year last season JJ was a dumpster fire as a D coach! if we could dump a couple of our flat footed Dmen and get a youngster or two in the lineup to get some seasoning we would be fair i think, not good or great but fair. i like most would rather live with mistakes by younger players who are hungry and have upside than retreads or players that are just worn out, if Plecky was here just to hit his # then gone i would be ok with that but we all know that is not the plan! i really liked what i saw from our new draft pick from this year he looked good probably not ready yet but you could see he is a real smart player with some nice moves and i like that C.J  let the boys just play the game i think it was good for  the team to shake off all the negatives from last season and the off season. and you know what it was pretty fun to watch for a change.

 

19 minutes ago, maas_art said:

I do wonder how much Ducharme and Richardson will help.  I know that Julien is boss but i get the sense he does delegate some important roles & those 2 sure seem a lot more qualified than the guys we let go.  Lets hope it translates to the ice, especially with the youngsters. 

You would think Ducharme, Richardson, and Bouchard can't be worse than Lacroix, Daigneault, and Lefebvre, but I guess time will tell. These new coaches also don't have a Subban or Pacioretty to work with, not even a Galchenyuk-caliber sniper or a Markov, so they're going to have to do some building up first.

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3 hours ago, caperns61 said:

36 goals 143 games over the last two seasons. Wow they will sure miss that sniper ..............

Maybe your talking about his first preseason game, -2 over 18 minutes of icetime and did not even register a shot on net, do u mean that sniper :)

get over the 1st pre season game, people get it you don't like AG, Maybe you don't like scoring, or maybe you forgot he spent time on the 4th line, and the scrubs he played with, it's cool, but don't judge a player by 1 pre season game, that's lame

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5 hours ago, jwlk said:

get over the 1st pre season game, people get it you don't like AG, Maybe you don't like scoring, or maybe you forgot he spent time on the 4th line, and the scrubs he played with, it's cool, but don't judge a player by 1 pre season game, that's lame

In addition to the 66 goals he scored over the last 3 seasons, making him the 2nd best goal scorer in that span behind Pacioretty, he also managed to score 2 goals in his 2nd preseason game for Arizona. So there's that.

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an evening full of ups and downs to start settling in towards a new season. I don't hope this is a sign of what is not to come, for we waited another 2 periods of awkwardness before we scored a goal, .. but as unpredictable as always, .. it's turned out to be 3 in a row, and the game seemed over after that.

nice to see young blood getting acquainted with each other, and Mete/Juulsen wasn't hard on the eye (in my view) and showed potential.

the powerplay, .. not sure which team has the advantage after the opposite team gets penalized. 

shooting .. please shoot the puck! .. there is no need for gritty rebounds from Gallagher and others like him that we have acquired to go for rebounds when no shots are taken, .. doesn't matter if you miss, keep shooting and you can only get better.

nice that the season is starting, and nice to comment on new faces, rather than dispute here over the same disputes for lack of newer disputes to dispute about.

hockey's back, and thus so are we, nice to be able to watch these pre-games over here (Holland, I'm sort of a Dutch/Canadian), and witness the warming of skates before the season starts.

and this season could be anybody's game, just keep peppering the goalie, we may not be great, but i'n hoping for not as bad and worn out as we were. 

looking forward to watching Drouin, Domi, and others in the next 3 games to come this week.

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