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2019-20 State Of The Habs


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Is it just me or has this been the most boring off-season in recent Habs history? I feel like nothing has really happened... no major trades, no major free agent signings, nohing much exciting... and all with a huge hole at left D. Hopeful Bergevin has something up his sleeve because if we go into the season with this line-up the odds are higher we miss the playoffs than make them. Largely disappointed with the lack of action to date, and September is closing in.

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19 minutes ago, BigTed3 said:

Is it just me or has this been the most boring off-season in recent Habs history? I feel like nothing has really happened... no major trades, no major free agent signings, nohing much exciting... and all with a huge hole at left D. Hopeful Bergevin has something up his sleeve because if we go into the season with this line-up the odds are higher we miss the playoffs than make them. Largely disappointed with the lack of action to date, and September is closing in.

Don't expect anything exciting to happen until year 10 of the 5 year plan when GM finally tells MB to take his dog and pony show and hit the road.

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52 minutes ago, BigTed3 said:

Is it just me or has this been the most boring off-season in recent Habs history? I feel like nothing has really happened... no major trades, no major free agent signings, nohing much exciting... and all with a huge hole at left D. Hopeful Bergevin has something up his sleeve because if we go into the season with this line-up the odds are higher we miss the playoffs than make them. Largely disappointed with the lack of action to date, and September is closing in.

Sooo boring it has been like watching paint dry lol. On a brighter note saw an article today that compared KK to Barkov though I am not sure about the validity of the article or the comparison how nice would it be if KK reached that level. See article here.

https://awinninghabit.com/2019/08/19/montreal-canadiens-jesperi-kotkaniemi-next-aleksander-barkov/

 

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20 hours ago, BigTed3 said:

Is it just me or has this been the most boring off-season in recent Habs history? I feel like nothing has really happened... no major trades, no major free agent signings, nohing much exciting... and all with a huge hole at left D. Hopeful Bergevin has something up his sleeve because if we go into the season with this line-up the odds are higher we miss the playoffs than make them. Largely disappointed with the lack of action to date, and September is closing in.

Boring for sure.  That said, it could be worse. There were moves in previous summers I wish hadnt happened, even though they were exciting. 

I still hold out a glimmer of hope that MB is planning something about the LD hole. Although that feels less likely as the days go by. 

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1 hour ago, maas_art said:

Boring for sure.  That said, it could be worse. There were moves in previous summers I wish hadnt happened, even though they were exciting. 

I still hold out a glimmer of hope that MB is planning something about the LD hole. Although that feels less likely as the days go by. 

Yeah, boring is not the worst it could be, but if we're calling boring a win, then it's time for a new GM. Anyone can do nothing, and Bergevin's biggest move this off-season was adding yet another 3rd pairing defenceman.

The problem I have with boring is that Weber is hitting his mid-30's and Price is getting up there and Petry is getting up there and if you take those 3 guys out of the line-up, this team probably wins no more than 20 games next year. So something has to give. either MB needs to make this line-up good enough to compete now or else he needs to move those aging assets before it's too late. We're in a division with maybe the best team in the league (Tampa), two other viable Cup threats (Bos and Tor) and a couple of teams that have gotten better in the past 6 months (Florida and Buffalo). It's just not enough to sit still and do nothing, especially when we have such a huge hole on the left side of our D. We watched the draft and saw MB fail to make a trade. We went through July 1st and had no impact signings and no trade movement either. And now we're getting closer and closer to training camp. The longer this goes on, the bigger the worry that MB just wants to go into camp and see how things go and then maybe thinks about scrambling to make a move 20-25 games into the season if things aren't going well and he's dealing from a position of weakness. I'm just not overly reassured by the position he's put himself in. There are a number of decent LHD rumored to be available, so is it that the asking prices are too exorbitant or is it that MB doesn't really have a plan... personally, I think he's committed to the mindset that he doesn't want to give up any of his top 10 prospects yet he also refuses to trade Weber, Petry, Price, and so on. And those two thoughts really aren't congruent with each other. Something has to give...

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i think the whole league is waiting for a couple of Laffs to either sign or get traded .once that happens some moves will get done and as the season gets closer some players holding out may blink and sign at less than they thought they would too. i do agree not much action not just here but all over too.

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13 hours ago, BigTed3 said:

 if we're calling boring a win, then it's time for a new GM. Anyone can do nothing, and Bergevin's biggest move this off-season was adding yet another 3rd pairing

Totally agree. We are in no position to stand pat right now but yet, here we are.

 

13 hours ago, ramcharger440 said:

i think the whole league is waiting for a couple of Laffs to either sign or get traded .once that happens some moves will get done and as the season gets closer some players holding out may blink and sign at less than they thought they would too. i do agree not much action not just here but all over too.

For sure. We are also in the middle of 'no mans land' for trades. Traditionally very little happens in August. But I do worry that nothing will happen in september and october and november and so on... 

11 hours ago, habs1952 said:

I don't think MB has the guts(trading a roster player and 1 or 2 prospects) to pull off a deal for a good LHD. He thinks if he waits long enough he will be able to fleece another GM in a trade. 

Yes.  He got lucky with a couple of very good trades last summer but those dont happen often.  At some point you have to make the difficult moves.  

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Interesting article on Shea Weber here: https://www.habseyesontheprize.com/2019/8/21/20813212/what-does-father-time-have-in-store-for-shea-weber-aging-curve-analysis-stats-canadiens-defence

But the most striking thing is how much he improved our possession metrics upon his return.

I dont think anyone thinks Shea will be Shea Weber from 5-6 years ago again but he's still a very good player & a very valuable part of this defense.  Doesnt mean I wouldnt trade him for a younger option but I think if he stays (he will as long as MB is in charge) he will be a valuable part of the team. 

I think that adding a top flight LD would be a huge boost for him. At this stage asking him to be our #1 AND carry a lesser partner is probably asking too much. 

ECVg0JsXYAAvBES.jpeg

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50 minutes ago, maas_art said:

Interesting article on Shea Weber here: https://www.habseyesontheprize.com/2019/8/21/20813212/what-does-father-time-have-in-store-for-shea-weber-aging-curve-analysis-stats-canadiens-defence

But the most striking thing is how much he improved our possession metrics upon his return.

I dont think anyone thinks Shea will be Shea Weber from 5-6 years ago again but he's still a very good player & a very valuable part of this defense.  Doesnt mean I wouldnt trade him for a younger option but I think if he stays (he will as long as MB is in charge) he will be a valuable part of the team. 

I think that adding a top flight LD would be a huge boost for him. At this stage asking him to be our #1 AND carry a lesser partner is probably asking too much. 

ECVg0JsXYAAvBES.jpeg

  I watched Moneyball again last night ...Hockey has a lot more intangibles than baseball and that's what Weber brings to the club despite  analytics .. Montreal was getting bashed around the front of the net and Price was getting hurt ..I don't see much of that now with Weber here and it'll be better with a hard-nosed Chiarot ...a lot of people seemed worried about the lack of activity these days but I feel things will still get shaken up a bit before the season starts ( after-all it's still August ) ..this club made a 25 point improvement over the year before due in a large part to getting Domi and Tatar as a throw in to acquiring a much-touted Suzuki .IMO  Drouin has probably only 1 year to prove himself but would garner much on the free market if he doesn't as his talent is undeniable and the price is right . I also have a feeling Shaw maxed out on his best year and his concussion problems and style of play might be his undoing though I loved him as a Hab ...so I'm not questioning this move at this point . Bergevin also stole Danault and Armia both integral parts of the club . Everything he has done is not bad with the exception of the Alzner deal . Drafting according to one team prospect ranking has seen them jump from #18 last year to # 5 this year ( the 2nd best improvement outside of LA ) and doesn't include KK or Juulsen who graduated .Teams can go from heroes to zeroes in one short year but we have a lot of young talent on the club and waiting in the wings who will be here for a while ..signed ...optimistic 

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On 8/21/2019 at 5:52 PM, maas_art said:

Interesting article on Shea Weber here: https://www.habseyesontheprize.com/2019/8/21/20813212/what-does-father-time-have-in-store-for-shea-weber-aging-curve-analysis-stats-canadiens-defence

But the most striking thing is how much he improved our possession metrics upon his return.

I dont think anyone thinks Shea will be Shea Weber from 5-6 years ago again but he's still a very good player & a very valuable part of this defense.  Doesnt mean I wouldnt trade him for a younger option but I think if he stays (he will as long as MB is in charge) he will be a valuable part of the team. 

I think that adding a top flight LD would be a huge boost for him. At this stage asking him to be our #1 AND carry a lesser partner is probably asking too much. 

ECVg0JsXYAAvBES.jpeg

Didn't read the article, admittedly, but the one question I'd have is who we're comparing Weber to here. What I'd find more useful would be say a comparison of possession metrics with Weber as our #1 D man vs. Subban as our #1 D man and to a lesser degree vs. Petry's pairing specifically when Petry was asked to be the #1 D man with Weber out. I'm not sure team metrics before and after Weber's return tell a big story because in all likelihood, when Weber came back, the guy who fell off the back end of the roster was a Schlemko or Alzner or so on.

I don't want to dump on Weber because like you said, he's a valuable guy. But we're not comparing Weber to another possible #1 D man here. We're comparing Weber as your #1, Petry as your #2, Mete as your #3, and so on vs. Weber being out and all those being asked to take on more minutes in tougher roles and a guy who probably shouldn't be in the NHL joining the line-up. So I'd be surprised if the metrics weren't 10x better that way. All that's telling us is that Weber is a lot better than an Alzner or Schlemko... maybe I misinterpreted what you wrote, but that's the takeaway I have from this, and I'm not sure it means much about whether Weber is a #1 guy or not.

 

 

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Apparently, Karl Alzner won't play in Lave this season.

 

"Alzner spoke to TVA Sports over the weekend and has been spending the summer in B.C., practicing with Carey Price and Shea Weber. However if he's not on the ice with them come October in a Canadiens' uniform, he says he has no interest in wearing a Rocket uniform once again. 

"If I do not have a job in Montreal, it will be elsewhere."

"I do not want to waste time because there are not many years left in my playing career. I want to take advantage of the ones I have left. "

Will he ask for a trade?

"Certainly,"

 

YAAAAAA!!!!!

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22 minutes ago, kinot-2 said:

Apparently, Karl Alzner won't play in Lave this season.

 

"Alzner spoke to TVA Sports over the weekend and has been spending the summer in B.C., practicing with Carey Price and Shea Weber. However if he's not on the ice with them come October in a Canadiens' uniform, he says he has no interest in wearing a Rocket uniform once again. 

"If I do not have a job in Montreal, it will be elsewhere."

"I do not want to waste time because there are not many years left in my playing career. I want to take advantage of the ones I have left. "

Will he ask for a trade?

"Certainly,"

 

YAAAAAA!!!!!

The other part of that story was the comment "If there was a trade to have been made, Bergevin would have made it by now." It's great for Alzner to ask for a trade, but obviously no one wanted him if he cleared waivers and his agent was given the chance to find a trade partner and couldn't either. Habs would have to eat salary to deal him, but if Alzner can't be traded and doesn't report to Laval, then even better for us and we can suspend him without pay.

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31 minutes ago, kinot-2 said:

Apparently, Karl Alzner won't play in Lave this season.

 

"Alzner spoke to TVA Sports over the weekend and has been spending the summer in B.C., practicing with Carey Price and Shea Weber. However if he's not on the ice with them come October in a Canadiens' uniform, he says he has no interest in wearing a Rocket uniform once again. 

"If I do not have a job in Montreal, it will be elsewhere."

"I do not want to waste time because there are not many years left in my playing career. I want to take advantage of the ones I have left. "

Will he ask for a trade?

"Certainly,"

 

YAAAAAA!!!!!

 

7 minutes ago, BigTed3 said:

The other part of that story was the comment "If there was a trade to have been made, Bergevin would have made it by now." It's great for Alzner to ask for a trade, but obviously no one wanted him if he cleared waivers and his agent was given the chance to find a trade partner and couldn't either. Habs would have to eat salary to deal him, but if Alzner can't be traded and doesn't report to Laval, then even better for us and we can suspend him without pay.

 

Sigh.


So here's the thing:on the one hand I totally feel for Alzer because you know he wants to play. But on the other hand I dont feel for him at all because he's getting paid $4.6m a year to play in a league where the average salary is around $80k.   

The notion of "there are not many years left in my playing career." are all good and fine but he needs to decide what that means to him - because he basically has two choices:   Get paid that high salary & most likely spend the rest of his career in the minors, or, ask to terminate his contact, leave approx $14m on the table and become a free agent.  At that point I suspect he could get an NHl contract at around $1m a year.   So whats more important Karl, the money or playing in the NHL. Because I think the chance of both is pretty near nil at this point. 

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 This sounds more like an outreach to agents around the NHL than it does anything else . Why would Karl  have thought that Bergevin hasn't tried to trade him yet ? After spending all year with Laval this is suddenly occurring to him ? I wish him well with this " new " angle . Then again I thought Lucic was absolutely unmoveable with his contract and Edmonton somehow moved him for more skill and more or less the same money ...go figure 

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21 hours ago, maas_art said:

The notion of "there are not many years left in my playing career." are all good and fine but he needs to decide what that means to him - because he basically has two choices:   Get paid that high salary & most likely spend the rest of his career in the minors, or, ask to terminate his contact, leave approx $14m on the table and become a free agent.  At that point I suspect he could get an NHl contract at around $1m a year.   So whats more important Karl, the money or playing in the NHL. Because I think the chance of both is pretty near nil at this point. 

Is that an option?  If both the player and the team agree, they can just end a contract and he can go play somewhere else in the NHL?  I would have thought the CBA would have prevented something like that.

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3 minutes ago, Manatee-X said:

Is that an option?  If both the player and the team agree, they can just end a contract and he can go play somewhere else in the NHL?  I would have thought the CBA would have prevented something like that.

I believe it could be. If I recall, Patrik Berglund did it with the Sabres recently and the Sabres were given cap relief for it. That said, I think this was done because the Sabres argued Berglund violated the terms of his contract by not reporting and Berglund agreed. Jake Dotchin's contract was terminated in Tampa this season because he reported out of shape, although the PA filed a grievance about this.

The Habs and Streit mutually terminated as well a couple of years ago and so did Plekanec, albeit we got no cap relief... I believe because the players were on 35+ contracts though.

So the short of it is that yes, I believe contract termination is an option via two different routes here:

1. Alzner could refuse to report and the Habs could terminate him for breech of contract.

2. The Habs and Alzner could agree to a mutual contract termination.

As Jedi said though, the main question is whether that's worth it to Alzner. He'd be giving up over 13M in actual money earned with no guarantee that he'll get another contract or if he does, more than minimum wage for one year at a time. And if he does get that, there's not guarantee he actually makes the team he tries to make. So I think you see few mutual terminations because the club would only have incentive to do that for poorly-performing overpaid players and the players probably know they won't make back the money they're giving away. So up to Alzner... mutual termination would be a great solution for us, it would just depend if Karl really meant what he said when he implied getting back to the NHL was more important than earning money for playing in the AHL.

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43 minutes ago, Manatee-X said:

Is that an option?  If both the player and the team agree, they can just end a contract and he can go play somewhere else in the NHL?  I would have thought the CBA would have prevented something like that.

 

29 minutes ago, BigTed3 said:

I believe it could be. If I recall, Patrik Berglund did it with the Sabres recently and the Sabres were given cap relief for it. That said, I think this was done because the Sabres argued Berglund violated the terms of his contract by not reporting and Berglund agreed. Jake Dotchin's contract was terminated in Tampa this season because he reported out of shape, although the PA filed a grievance about this.

The Habs and Streit mutually terminated as well a couple of years ago and so did Plekanec, albeit we got no cap relief... I believe because the players were on 35+ contracts though.

So the short of it is that yes, I believe contract termination is an option via two different routes here:

1. Alzner could refuse to report and the Habs could terminate him for breech of contract.

2. The Habs and Alzner could agree to a mutual contract termination.

As Jedi said though, the main question is whether that's worth it to Alzner. He'd be giving up over 13M in actual money earned with no guarantee that he'll get another contract or if he does, more than minimum wage for one year at a time. And if he does get that, there's not guarantee he actually makes the team he tries to make. So I think you see few mutual terminations because the club would only have incentive to do that for poorly-performing overpaid players and the players probably know they won't make back the money they're giving away. So up to Alzner... mutual termination would be a great solution for us, it would just depend if Karl really meant what he said when he implied getting back to the NHL was more important than earning money for playing in the AHL.

As Ted pointed out, im pretty sure its allowable, as long as the player isnt over 35.   It pretty much never happens though because the player would almost certainly be leaving (probably major) money on the table.

It sucks that Karl Alzner is not a top 4 defensman, he seems like a nice guy.  But he's getting paid like one so he should probably just shut up and take the money.

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Interesting, I learned something today!  In any case, I reeeeeally can't see someone giving up on that kind of guaranteed money.  However much he might love the game and the NHL, he's got to worry about the rest of his life as well and not just the next few years.

I sympathize with him for sure, but as with everything it's a business.  Bergevin should do what he can to trade him, but not to the point of eating salary unless we're actually getting something useful in return.

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1 hour ago, maas_art said:

 

As Ted pointed out, im pretty sure its allowable, as long as the player isnt over 35.   It pretty much never happens though because the player would almost certainly be leaving (probably major) money on the table.

It sucks that Karl Alzner is not a top 4 defensman, he seems like a nice guy.  But he's getting paid like one so he should probably just shut up and take the money.

 

58 minutes ago, Manatee-X said:

Interesting, I learned something today!  In any case, I reeeeeally can't see someone giving up on that kind of guaranteed money.  However much he might love the game and the NHL, he's got to worry about the rest of his life as well and not just the next few years.

I sympathize with him for sure, but as with everything it's a business.  Bergevin should do what he can to trade him, but not to the point of eating salary unless we're actually getting something useful in return.

That's it. Alzner can whine about Laval all he wants, but at the end of the day, he hasn't been good enough to play in the NHL and that's on him. No GM in the league thinks he's worth his contract or he'd have been claimed on waivers, so his choices are

1. Report to Laval and make the last 13+M on your contract over the next 3 years to be a mentor to younger guys

2. Have your agent find a trade that works for all parties, whereby the Habs eat some money but end up saving more cap space than they would by shelving Alzner in Laval.

3. Mutual termination

You'd have to figure option 2 has been near exhausted as well, or it probably would have happened. So the only decision Alzner really needs to make is whether he wants to give back 13M for another shot. That shot, however, means he's probably getting a PTO or getting a one-year minimum wage deal with a chance at making a club. He's guaranteed nothing, and the odds are reasonably high that he just doesn't ever make an NHL again, even if he finds a better situation than here. Best case scenario for him is that he manages to cling on to a team for next season and gets another 1-2 year deal for 1-2M a season after that, but the odds are extremely high that by terminating his contract he makes no more than 4-5M the rest of his NHL career, and even that's a bit of a long shot. He may never make another dollar again.

Like we've said, Alzner can put his money where his mouth is and bet on himself, but it's essentially a 13M gamble...

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1 hour ago, Manatee-X said:

However much he might love the game and the NHL, he's got to worry about the rest of his life as well and not just the next few years.

I sympathize with him for sure, but as with everything it's a business.  

 

18 minutes ago, BigTed3 said:

 

That's it. Alzner can whine about Laval all he wants, but at the end of the day, he hasn't been good enough to play in the NHL and that's on him. 

Agreed. And thats the point, he cant have it both ways. 

 

18 minutes ago, BigTed3 said:

his choices are

1. Report to Laval and make the last 13+M on your contract over the next 3 years to be a mentor to younger guys

2. Have your agent find a trade that works for all parties, whereby the Habs eat some money but end up saving more cap space than they would by shelving Alzner in Laval.

3. Mutual termination

You'd have to figure option 2 has been near exhausted as well, or it probably would have happened. So the only decision Alzner really needs to make is whether he wants to give back 13M for another shot. That shot, however, means he's probably getting a PTO or getting a one-year minimum wage deal with a chance at making a club. He's guaranteed nothing, and the odds are reasonably high that he just doesn't ever make an NHL again, even if he finds a better situation than here. Best case scenario for him is that he manages to cling on to a team for next season and gets another 1-2 year deal for 1-2M a season after that, but the odds are extremely high that by terminating his contract he makes no more than 4-5M the rest of his NHL career, and even that's a bit of a long shot. He may never make another dollar again.

Like we've said, Alzner can put his money where his mouth is and bet on himself, but it's essentially a 13M gamble...

Yeah I am pretty sure we heard that MB let Alzner's agent talk to other GMs in an effort to bridge a deal?  So one would assume that they (Alzner's camp) know if there's a team out there who would take a chance on him - and at what price.   He'd unquestionably be leaving money on the table.  I mean any team in the league could trade a 7th rounder to MB for KA and get him, so its not like they are balking at giving up assets.  So the questions are: what is that $$ and what is the term he could get with another team?

Lets say team X has said they would taking him for $2m a year for 3 years.... then its $8m he's throwing away - BUT - there's still no guarantee they wont send him to the minors at which point he's lost both the money and the NHL. 

I just cant see any way he ends up anywhere else than Laval at this point. 

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