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2019-20 State Of The Habs


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30 minutes ago, arpem-can said:

 I tend to be agreement on this ..if there are 3 players you might want to sign back the Habs are better keeping them no matter what ..I'm thinking Kovalchuk , Scandella and Thompson ..If they keep 1 , 2 or 3 them for the rest of the year there's a better chance of signing them before hitting the off-season market and as well at a better contract...also sends a good message to the team ...still I believe Bergevin will unload maybe 2 players ( Weise , Cousins or Weal  , Barber ? ) for picks but they won't be high 

The counter-argument is that there may not be room for all these players next year, even if MB was thinking about signing them. We could certainly make trades, but if you look at the middle of the ice, you have in some order Danault, Domi, Suzuki, Kotkaniemi, and Poehling who can all play there. When healthy, you have Tatar, Drouin, and Byron down the left side and Gallagher, Kovalchuk, and Armia down the right, and Lehkonen who could play either side in addition to Domi maybe getting bumped to the wing. On left D, you have Mete, Kulak, Chiarot, and potentially Romanov battling for spots. So I'm not sure I see room for Thompson and Scandella, unless the plan is to trade away a player or two to make room for them. To boot, I don't think it helps the team to go into next year with the same group at left D, even adding Romanov. We saw what happened this year when MB failed again to address this problem. If there's any hope of being a top 10 team in the league next year, there needs to be a top-pairing LHD coming in. So IMO, you have room for Mete and Romanov and one of Chiarot, Kulak, and Scandella and then you need to add someone better.

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57 minutes ago, BigTed3 said:

The counter-argument is that there may not be room for all these players next year, even if MB was thinking about signing them. We could certainly make trades, but if you look at the middle of the ice, you have in some order Danault, Domi, Suzuki, Kotkaniemi, and Poehling who can all play there. When healthy, you have Tatar, Drouin, and Byron down the left side and Gallagher, Kovalchuk, and Armia down the right, and Lehkonen who could play either side in addition to Domi maybe getting bumped to the wing. On left D, you have Mete, Kulak, Chiarot, and potentially Romanov battling for spots. So I'm not sure I see room for Thompson and Scandella, unless the plan is to trade away a player or two to make room for them. To boot, I don't think it helps the team to go into next year with the same group at left D, even adding Romanov. We saw what happened this year when MB failed again to address this problem. If there's any hope of being a top 10 team in the league next year, there needs to be a top-pairing LHD coming in. So IMO, you have room for Mete and Romanov and one of Chiarot, Kulak, and Scandella and then you need to add someone better.

We're stuck with Chiarot ... so if Romanov does come over next year the left side is Chiarot, Mete, Romanov in theory with Kulak the 7th D and Scandella gone.

Right side is banged up Weber, Petry, ?? ... Fleury most likely, though Brook could challenge and who knows maybe Juulsen will come back from the dead.

Forwards ... the only guys not signed for next season are UFA's Thompson, Kovalchuk, Weise and RFA's Domi, Cousins, Evans (as of current lineup)

We have 9 signed ..   so that's room for 3 of the above.     Of those 9 signed ... Weal gets sent down in a logical world ... leaving  4 spots.   Who plays 4th line?   Byron, Lehkonen on the wings?   Who plays 4th line C, Poehling?  Not a good situation.     So Thompson most likely gets signed, leaving Poehling/KK in Laval.

That leaves you 3 spots in the top for Domi, Kovalchuk ... with one last spot for Poehling/KK/Evans presuming Cousins/Weise are let loose.

Tatar - Danault - Gallagher

Drouin - Domi - Suzuki

Kovalchuk - KK/Poehling - Armia

Lehkonen - Thompson - Byron 

Chiarot - Weber

Romanov - Petry

Mete - Fleury/??

 

As I said, another lost season coming next year

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2 hours ago, BigTed3 said:

FWIW, Dans Les Coulisses reporting today that they received info that "Habs players do not expect to see Weber back in uniform this season" and that the "thought is that Weber's season is over." They note that this has not been confirmed by a second source though. They add a link to a doctor who watched Weber's last game and notes that he blocked a shot that could have caused injury. His speculation is that there is too much swelling to be able to image the bone clearly but that the Habs might think Weber has a fracture anyways and need to wait to confirm.

If he does have a fracture then we're likely looking at at least 6 weeks to heal, which means his season would be very close to being done... bad news if true, especially considering how weak our D already was even with Weber in the line-up.

Lets hope they are wrong. That article also mentions that Weber was seen walking freely (no crutches) and that he didnt appear to be limping... so that would be odd if it was an ankle or knee etc, no? 

 

2 hours ago, habs1952 said:

I'm pretty sure he took a shot off his foot/ankle. He slashed the player who took the shot so obviously he wasn't happy.

Interesting that Julien has gone out of his way a couple of times to say that it was NOT because of the blocked shot. I mean why say anything? why deny it if its clear thats what happened.  Weird. 

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52 minutes ago, HabsAlways said:

We're stuck with Chiarot ... so if Romanov does come over next year the left side is Chiarot, Mete, Romanov in theory with Kulak the 7th D and Scandella gone.

Right side is banged up Weber, Petry, ?? ... Fleury most likely, though Brook could challenge and who knows maybe Juulsen will come back from the dead.

Forwards ... the only guys not signed for next season are UFA's Thompson, Kovalchuk, Weise and RFA's Domi, Cousins, Evans (as of current lineup)

We have 9 signed ..   so that's room for 3 of the above.     Of those 9 signed ... Weal gets sent down in a logical world ... leaving  4 spots.   Who plays 4th line?   Byron, Lehkonen on the wings?   Who plays 4th line C, Poehling?  Not a good situation.     So Thompson most likely gets signed, leaving Poehling/KK in Laval.

That leaves you 3 spots in the top for Domi, Kovalchuk ... with one last spot for Poehling/KK/Evans presuming Cousins/Weise are let loose.

Tatar - Danault - Gallagher

Drouin - Domi - Suzuki

Kovalchuk - KK/Poehling - Armia

Lehkonen - Thompson - Byron 

Chiarot - Weber

Romanov - Petry

Mete - Fleury/??

 

As I said, another lost season coming next year

I could be wrong, but this is how I believe MB and CJ have the line-up penciled in for next year, without any movement yet:

Tatar-Danault-Gallagher

Kovalchuk/Domi-Suzuki-Armia

Drouin-Kotkaniemi-Lehkonen

Cousins-Poehling-Byron

 

I listed it like that because I don't know that there's room for all of Tatar, Domi, Kovalchuk, and Drouin I think if Kovalchuk re-signs, then you have 7 top 9 forwards and someone is going to be traded. And my odds are highest on that being Domi as things currently stand.

On D, I think they'd have it lined up as

Romanov-Weber

Chiarot-Petry

Mete-Fleury

That's not how I'd do it because I don't think those bottom two pairs have been very good together at all, but I think the Habs view Romanov as their best chance at a top pairing LHD and they'll run with it unless they find something better.

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, BigTed3 said:

I could be wrong, but this is how I believe MB and CJ have the line-up penciled in for next year, without any movement yet:

Tatar-Danault-Gallagher

Kovalchuk/Domi-Suzuki-Armia

Drouin-Kotkaniemi-Lehkonen

Cousins-Poehling-Byron

 

I listed it like that because I don't know that there's room for all of Tatar, Domi, Kovalchuk, and Drouin I think if Kovalchuk re-signs, then you have 7 top 9 forwards and someone is going to be traded. And my odds are highest on that being Domi as things currently stand.

On D, I think they'd have it lined up as

Romanov-Weber

Chiarot-Petry

Mete-Fleury

That's not how I'd do it because I don't think those bottom two pairs have been very good together at all, but I think the Habs view Romanov as their best chance at a top pairing LHD and they'll run with it unless they find something better.

I agree with you on your opinion of MB/CJ’s lineup except was hoping they would consider 1. Caufield being able to make the jump 2. Get Cousins out of there - Evans or someone else slots in or Poehling moves to wing with Nate returned 

Of course I’m cheering for them to make a divisional playoff spot and not a wild card with that lineup, but I never want to have the over zealous expectations of a Laffs fan by thinking our players are better than everyone else’s

The D depth will be interesting especially at Laval as Fairbrother should get assigned there Brooks has more development required and the athletic stud Struble or Jordan Harris are a couple of years away IMO even if they left college early. 
Bergevin has gone on record that he loves the heart of this team. Tatar if we get offered a first and a D prospect is the best logical trade (even though I have a good emotional attachment to his play and effort) 

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1 hour ago, BigTed3 said:

I could be wrong, but this is how I believe MB and CJ have the line-up penciled in for next year, without any movement yet:

Tatar-Danault-Gallagher

Kovalchuk/Domi-Suzuki-Armia

Drouin-Kotkaniemi-Lehkonen

Cousins-Poehling-Byron

 

I listed it like that because I don't know that there's room for all of Tatar, Domi, Kovalchuk, and Drouin I think if Kovalchuk re-signs, then you have 7 top 9 forwards and someone is going to be traded. And my odds are highest on that being Domi as things currently stand.

On D, I think they'd have it lined up as

Romanov-Weber

Chiarot-Petry

Mete-Fleury

That's not how I'd do it because I don't think those bottom two pairs have been very good together at all, but I think the Habs view Romanov as their best chance at a top pairing LHD and they'll run with it unless they find something better.

 

 

 

As much as the HABs and myself have liked Byron , after this season him being gone almost the whole season and he had a slow start. With Poehling and Suzuki both playing PK and looking good, I think Byron may be gone. I like Armia and he has size and can shield the puck. I could see him being utilized on the 4th line also though and moved up the line up when needed and play on the PP. Cousin/Poehling/Armia I think would be as effective as having Byron there and it gives you flexibility for injury and just when players are hot or cold to move through out the line up.

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22 minutes ago, CaptWelly said:

As much as the HABs and myself have liked Byron , after this season him being gone almost the whole season and he had a slow start. With Poehling and Suzuki both playing PK and looking good, I think Byron may be gone. I like Armia and he has size and can shield the puck. I could see him being utilized on the 4th line also though and moved up the line up when needed and play on the PP. Cousin/Poehling/Armia I think would be as effective as having Byron there and it gives you flexibility for injury and just when players are hot or cold to move through out the line up.

Armia is not playing on the 4th.    Neither should Poehling play on the 4th.    Byron is still signed.    Like I said, I'm pretty sure MB resigns Thompson and next years 4th line is Byron - Thompson - Lehkonen.

People really under value Armia ... his board play, puck control is what creates time and space for other guys.

26 minutes ago, claremont said:

I agree with you on your opinion of MB/CJ’s lineup except was hoping they would consider 1. Caufield being able to make the jump 2. Get Cousins out of there - Evans or someone else slots in or Poehling moves to wing with Nate returned 

Of course I’m cheering for them to make a divisional playoff spot and not a wild card with that lineup, but I never want to have the over zealous expectations of a Laffs fan by thinking our players are better than everyone else’s

The D depth will be interesting especially at Laval as Fairbrother should get assigned there Brooks has more development required and the athletic stud Struble or Jordan Harris are a couple of years away IMO even if they left college early. 
Bergevin has gone on record that he loves the heart of this team. Tatar if we get offered a first and a D prospect is the best logical trade (even though I have a good emotional attachment to his play and effort) 

Fairbrother, Struble, Harris are at best AHL fodder.   They might get some time in as the 6th/7th D one day in the league but they're nothing to look forrward to

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10 minutes ago, HabsAlways said:

Armia is not playing on the 4th.    Neither should Poehling play on the 4th.    Byron is still signed.    Like I said, I'm pretty sure MB resigns Thompson and next years 4th line is Byron - Thompson - Lehkonen.

People really under value Armia ... his board play, puck control is what creates time and space for other guys.

Fairbrother, Struble, Harris are at best AHL fodder.   They might get some time in as the 6th/7th D one day in the league but they're nothing to look forrward to

On the D - Agree with you on Fairbrother and Harris. I’m a little more hyped for Struble as he’s awfully young at 18 and may not project as an offensive d man. I’ll follow his progress with more interest since he was a 2nd rounder with impressive Athletic testing that with coaching I hope transfers thru to hockey sense. You might be a tad pessimistic at 6-7 as his ceiling could be 3 or 4. If you are right then he was a massive overstated reach as a 2nd rounder (yes  we’ve over reached before) 

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1 hour ago, claremont said:

On the D - Agree with you on Fairbrother and Harris. I’m a little more hyped for Struble as he’s awfully young at 18 and may not project as an offensive d man. I’ll follow his progress with more interest since he was a 2nd rounder with impressive Athletic testing that with coaching I hope transfers thru to hockey sense. You might be a tad pessimistic at 6-7 as his ceiling could be 3 or 4. If you are right then he was a massive overstated reach as a 2nd rounder (yes  we’ve over reached before) 

And now Struble is out for the rest of the season with a lower body injury! 

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1 hour ago, claremont said:

On the D - Agree with you on Fairbrother and Harris. I’m a little more hyped for Struble as he’s awfully young at 18 and may not project as an offensive d man. I’ll follow his progress with more interest since he was a 2nd rounder with impressive Athletic testing that with coaching I hope transfers thru to hockey sense. You might be a tad pessimistic at 6-7 as his ceiling could be 3 or 4. If you are right then he was a massive overstated reach as a 2nd rounder (yes  we’ve over reached before) 

If he was a 2nd rounder out of the CHL I might agree 3rd or 4th ... but he's out of the US system, and really at 6'0 and no offensive upside I don't see him as ever being more than a bottom pairing/7th D guy (Struble that is).  Struble was ranked :

Rankings

So he was supposed to go anywhere from bottom of 2nd to 4th round.    Dobber had him 87th.    I think at the end of the day he was a gamble pick.

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Jeremy Filosa of 98.5FM adding that he too has heard Weber will be out long-term. That's two sources now.

If he is indeed out long-term, we have on D:

- Petry, who is over-taxed already

- Kulak, who has been okay partnering Petry but is ideally a 3rd pairing guy

- Mete, who has been mediocre

- Chiarot, who has gone back to looking over-matched since Weber went down

- Scandella, who has looked awful. Like not NHL quality awful.

- Folin, who is definitely not NHL quality

- Ouellet, who has maybe been our 3rd or 4th best D man since his recall, sadly.

 

This group isn't getting us to the playoffs never mind through a round or two or four. There were huge deficiencies before Weber went down, and now we have huge deficiencies on both sides of the ice.

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If it's true it just goes to show you that management once again won't be honest with the fans. We have to get our info from leakers.

Just this morning CJ was saying they had to wait for swelling to subside before making a diagnosis. I guess the press have better X-Ray machines.:rolleyes:

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1 hour ago, H_T_L said:

Probably heard it from the other two.:lol:

Kind of what i was thinking.  We've seen before where one guy speculates & then suddenly half a dozen fringe analysts repeat it.  If Friedman or McKenzie brings this up i might listen. 

 

1 hour ago, H_T_L said:

If it's true it just goes to show you that management once again won't be honest with the fans. We have to get our info from leakers.

Just this morning CJ was saying they had to wait for swelling to subside before making a diagnosis. I guess the press have better X-Ray machines.:rolleyes:

Look, im not defending the team but in this particular case any sensible team would do the same thing. If there's that much swelling, right now they honestly dont know. Until they are sure it would be silly to speculate. The media can do that but the team wont (and shouldnt).

I still find it weird he's walking normally (no cast, no limp) and could be done for the season?  Odd. 

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10 hours ago, maas_art said:

Kind of what i was thinking.  We've seen before where one guy speculates & then suddenly half a dozen fringe analysts repeat it.  If Friedman or McKenzie brings this up i might listen. 

 

Look, im not defending the team but in this particular case any sensible team would do the same thing. If there's that much swelling, right now they honestly dont know. Until they are sure it would be silly to speculate. The media can do that but the team wont (and shouldnt).

I still find it weird he's walking normally (no cast, no limp) and could be done for the season?  Odd. 

Thera also is NO fans 'right to know". Yes we are fans of a game or sport. It is also a business and there isn't any team in hockey that's tells their fans all that's going on injury wise or locker room ect. Players throughout the season play with issues and when the playoffs come the teams really try to tighten up about issues. That said there is no valid reason a team needs to tell their fans everything. The only reason the injury is disclosed in the NFL is because of betting. It wasn't always required to disclose years ago and they didn't.

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It's not so much the fans need to know about injuries, it's about being led on in regards to a timeline. Good example was Price a couple years ago when they just kept us in the dark. Next week became next month and then next season. If they don't know, then why not simply say indefinite until they reassess in whatever number of days/weeks? I know that's the part that irks me. Knowing it's the left ankle or a broken bone or whatever is OK to not make common knowledge, so other teams don't target those areas, but stop getting fans hopes raised about an imminent return when there's not one coming any time soon.

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5 minutes ago, H_T_L said:

It's not so much the fans need to know about injuries, it's about being led on in regards to a timeline. Good example was Price a couple years ago when they just kept us in the dark. Next week became next month and then next season. If they don't know, then why not simply say indefinite until they reassess in whatever number of days/weeks? I know that's the part that irks me. Knowing it's the left ankle or a broken bone or whatever is OK to not make common knowledge, so other teams don't target those areas, but stop getting fans hopes raised about an imminent return when there's not one coming any time soon.

Well and thats the thing. The team has become "the boy who cried wolf" and as such we just dont believe anything about what they are saying now.   

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Ok perhaps it's just me but why do we really care when a player is expexted to return? It's not like the day of his return we are suddenly going to be unstoppable and our season saved. No one cares when I will return to work when I get injured other than the people that I report to. It's their lives not ours. We don't know what goes on behind the scenes and quite honestly we shouldn't know cause it not our business.

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  so has anybody heard about Danault ? ..maybe like Weber  it's more serious as well …just a tough year for injuries to key players . Re-set less than 2 weeks away I'm afraid. BTW look at what's happened to Galchenyuk now on his 4th team in his young career . And Pitts had to throw in a !st round pick and a player to get Minny to take him . I'm really wondering what happened to this kid ? Is it all just poor defensive game ?. So talented too...I see him in the KHL sooner than later at this rate .

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1 hour ago, arpem-can said:

  so has anybody heard about Danault ? ..maybe like Weber  it's more serious as well …just a tough year for injuries to key players . Re-set less than 2 weeks away I'm afraid. 

He lost teeth but there's a decent chance he wont even miss a game.  No fracture, no concussion.  Travelling with the team.  Will likely wear a full face shield.  Poor Tatar (whose shot hit him) you can see how upset he is:
 

Phillip-Danault-Montreal-Canadiens-puck-

 

1 hour ago, arpem-can said:

BTW look at what's happened to Galchenyuk now on his 4th team in his young career . And Pitts had to throw in a !st round pick and a player to get Minny to take him . I'm really wondering what happened to this kid ? Is it all just poor defensive game ?. So talented too...I see him in the KHL sooner than later at this rate .

Uhm... I think thats  a bit of an exaggeration (Bold)  

You make it soudn like they had to pay to get rid of Galchenyuk but they got back a very good player in Zucker. Sure they gave up a great young prospect in Addison but you'd expect that sort of return for Zucker.      I agree with your sentiment that his value is at rock bottom but he wasnt exactly a throw in or salary dump. I suspect Minnesota believes he might bounce back with them & if not, no risk, he's soon to be UFA. 

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MB seems to pride himself on being a players General Manager several times commenting that he likes the chemistry of this team and that he’s not listening to any offers unless they are overwhelming. The players seem to repeat the message that everyone in the room is fully engaged and committed. 
So I’m all for a happy family and culture, but many times you have to separate the emotion and make a business/talent improvement decision. I’m continually concerned that MB may not be able to make some difficult decisions unless they are painfully obvious character rifts 

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3 hours ago, arpem-can said:

  so has anybody heard about Danault ? ..maybe like Weber  it's more serious as well …just a tough year for injuries to key players . Re-set less than 2 weeks away I'm afraid. BTW look at what's happened to Galchenyuk now on his 4th team in his young career . And Pitts had to throw in a !st round pick and a player to get Minny to take him . I'm really wondering what happened to this kid ? Is it all just poor defensive game ?. So talented too...I see him in the KHL sooner than later at this rate .

 

1 hour ago, maas_art said:


Uhm... I think thats  a bit of an exaggeration (Bold)  


You make it soudn like they had to pay to get rid of Galchenyuk but they got back a very good player in Zucker. Sure they gave up a great young prospect in Addison but you'd expect that sort of return for Zucker.      I agree with your sentiment that his value is at rock bottom but he wasnt exactly a throw in or salary dump. I suspect Minnesota believes he might bounce back with them & if not, no risk, he's soon to be UFA. 

Yeah, Pittsburgh didn't pay anyone to take him, he was given away basically for free to make the cap hits work. Yes, Galchenyuk's career has spiraled down, but on the other hand he's still young and skilled and he could end up being a steal for Minnesota too.

You look at Tatar, who was written off and discarded as done by Vegas. Bergevin has admitted he was just a throw-in, but he's ended up being just as good as Pacioretty was for us. You look at Zach Kassian, whom Bergevin dumped and who has been a decent player for Edmonton. You look at Devon Dubnyk, whom we acquired to play in the minors for nothing and then ended up reviving his career in Minnesota a year or two later. You look at Kevin Shattenkirk, who kind of didn't fit in in New York but has been a fit in Tampa. Some of these guys who are write-offs ended up being nice additions for other squads. We'll see.

 

 

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