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Jake Evans


ramcharger440
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27 minutes ago, ramcharger440 said:

Anyone else think he can replace Dano? if he wants too much money......

I think he can. He was 53% in FOs tonight and he kills penalties. 

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I think that with the right linemates and assignments he's a solid player. Im not sure he's ever going to be as good as Dano at his best but Danault will be 29 next year & we may already have seen 'his best' (not that he cant be good for a while but i dont think he'll ever get better - Jake has more to give imho).

I think that there's a legit chance you would be ok going into next season with JK - Suzuki - Evans - Poehling and maybe one vet centre on a 1 - 2 year deal. Im of the mind that we might be able to use Danault's salary better elsewhere.  Suzuki and JK will get better. Poehling took a huge step forward this year.

Our biggest issue is, remains & will probably continue to be on defense. 

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17 hours ago, ramcharger440 said:

Anyone else think he can replace Dano? if he wants too much money......

 

16 hours ago, maas_art said:

I think that with the right linemates and assignments he's a solid player. Im not sure he's ever going to be as good as Dano at his best but Danault will be 29 next year & we may already have seen 'his best' (not that he cant be good for a while but i dont think he'll ever get better - Jake has more to give imho).

I think that there's a legit chance you would be ok going into next season with JK - Suzuki - Evans - Poehling and maybe one vet centre on a 1 - 2 year deal. Im of the mind that we might be able to use Danault's salary better elsewhere.  Suzuki and JK will get better. Poehling took a huge step forward this year.

Our biggest issue is, remains & will probably continue to be on defense. 

I think the Habs will easily consider replacing Danault with Evans, or at least using Evans as leverage in contract negotiations. Look how Danault himself got his position... at the time we traded Eller, Danault had played a grand total of 21 games for us and amassed 5 points. But the Habs believed Danault could replace Eller as a 3C and moved on without much proof that was the case.

I don't think the concern here is so much whether Evans can be a decent 3C. I think the Habs believe he can be and that he can do that as early as next year. The difference is that when Danault was moved into the 3C role, the team still had Plekanec and Desharnais ahead of him and were tinkering with Galchenyuk at center as well. There was depth there and there was veteran depth. If Danault flopped, the team probably felt like they still had options to lean on. Next year, without Danault, we'd be going into the season potentially with 4 very young centers. Evans, at 25, would in fact be the oldest next training camp. So the team needs to consider who their go-to face-off man would be, who their two PK centers are, and where their veteran leadership is coming from. To boot, the organization clearly has a problem trusting younger players. I've written about this before, but you look at a lot of other teams and you have Ottawa putting faith in their Chabot's, Stutzle's, Tkachuk's, etc. and seeing results. You had Vancouver last year turning the reigns over to Hughes, Petterssen, Boeser, etc. to lead the way. You have Toronto that has been riding Matthews, Marner, Nylander, and Rielly for a few years now from a young age. You had Pittsburgh that played Crosby/Malkin as their go-to guys as soon s they broke into the league and Chicago who trusted Toews and Kane and Tampa with Kucherov, Stamkos, Hedman, Point, Sergachev, and so on. Carolina with Aho, Svechnikov, and so on. Edmonton with Draisaitl and McDavid. A lot of the teams that have great core rosters are being led by franchise players who got to take over big roles with the team very early in their careers. The Habs can't be afraid to play Suzuki and Kotkaniemi as their top 2 guys. They can't punish them for mistakes and expect their confidence to grow. They can't banish them to the wing or play them behind the likes of Staal and ruin them the way they did other players. For far too long, this club has defaulted back to playing journeymen veterans over giving their youth experience and a vote of confidence.

As far s the free agent market goes next year, there aren't a lot of guys who stand out as good center options. RNH is one. He could be a useful player to replace Danault. Alex Wennberg is also a decent player in Florida, but not sure why he would leave there to come here. Past that, there are stop-gaps but not really anyone I would envision being interested in signing for more than two years. The point with all this is that I'm fine if the Habs can get Danault signed to something reasonable (3-4 years, 5M AAV). I think he provides the veteran stability down the middle as the young guys develop. But it would need to be clear that Suzuki/JK are the top 2 centers, and I'm not sure Danault is down with that. Otherwise, I think Evans could be the 3C, but it leaves some question marks if he or JK or Poehling just aren't where you want them to be in a year.

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19 minutes ago, BigTed3 said:

The Habs can't be afraid to play Suzuki and Kotkaniemi as their top 2 guys. They can't punish them for mistakes and expect their confidence to grow. They can't banish them to the wing or play them behind the likes of Staal and ruin them the way they did other players. For far too long, this club has defaulted back to playing journeymen veterans over giving their youth experience and a vote of confidence.

In hindsight, Galchenyuk was more suited to be a winger ... but ... they still play this game with all our young players.  Rather than letting them learn they repress them by overly limiting ice time, not putting them into situations they should be expected to play in their prime and thus stunting their development.

I'll use Kotkaniemi as the example.  Even as young as he is, 3 years into the NHL he should be one of our top 2 C's behind Dano or Suzuki.    JK has flashes of brilliance, vision that is rarely seen in players,    However, the Habs coaching keeps overly sheltering him to the point he's regressed if anything and instead of building on the strong set of natural skills and vision he has, he plays scared to make a mistake and get his ice time cut.

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3 hours ago, HabsAlways said:

In hindsight, Galchenyuk was more suited to be a winger ... but ... they still play this game with all our young players.  Rather than letting them learn they repress them by overly limiting ice time, not putting them into situations they should be expected to play in their prime and thus stunting their development.

I'll use Kotkaniemi as the example.  Even as young as he is, 3 years into the NHL he should be one of our top 2 C's behind Dano or Suzuki.    JK has flashes of brilliance, vision that is rarely seen in players,    However, the Habs coaching keeps overly sheltering him to the point he's regressed if anything and instead of building on the strong set of natural skills and vision he has, he plays scared to make a mistake and get his ice time cut.

The other issue is he gets crap wingers a lot of the time. you can make all the plays you want to Armia and Lehks between them you are lucky to get 20 goals total not going to get many points as a top 3 center with those two plugs as wingers! this year has been a bit better with Anderson and Tofu but the damage may already be done. we need a good GM and a good coach to ort out what we really have here and then tweak it and draft right! and when we do draft right don't trade away the players we actually need! at least our farm team seems to be on track.

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11 hours ago, ramcharger440 said:

The other issue is he gets crap wingers a lot of the time. you can make all the plays you want to Armia and Lehks between them you are lucky to get 20 goals total not going to get many points as a top 3 center with those two plugs as wingers! this year has been a bit better with Anderson and Tofu but the damage may already be done. we need a good GM and a good coach to ort out what we really have here and then tweak it and draft right! and when we do draft right don't trade away the players we actually need! at least our farm team seems to be on track.

Here is the is the thing, and i heard the same excuses for Galchenyk, he never gets to play center, he gets crap wingers, he plays on the fourth line, he doesn't get enough icetime. Maybe, just ,maybe its the player, or the scouting its rarely the delevopment. If a player is good enough and has the desire and committment, once they are drafted and playing in the NHL they find a way to make it happen, good players make other players better not the other way around :)

 

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58 minutes ago, caperns61 said:

 

Here is the is the thing, and i heard the same excuses for Galchenyk, he never gets to play center, he gets crap wingers, he plays on the fourth line, he doesn't get enough icetime. Maybe, just ,maybe its the player, or the scouting its rarely the delevopment. If a player is good enough and has the desire and committment, once they are drafted and playing in the NHL they find a way to make it happen, good players make other players better not the other way around :)

 

Sure, the player has to perform, but so much of performance in sports is psychology as well. Guys like Galchenyuk and Kotkaniemi have tremendous skill and are fully capable of playing well, but when you toss them around the line-up and punish them for the slightest mistake, it's going to make them hesitate on the ice and lose that instinct to play hockey. Michel Bergeron was on during the intermission a couple of nights ago and he said the Habs have completely screwed over Kotkaniemi. He said one day they tell him he's a center, then they tell him he's a winger, then they tell him to play with different guys and they tell him to score playing with checking wingers, then they tell him he needs to shoot more and stop passing, then they tell him they want him to hit more and put on weight, then they tell him he's lost speed and to lose weight. Bergeron said that what the Habs need to do is stop over-coaching him and just let a young guy with skill play. He said if he were coach he would tell his assistants to leave Kotkaniemi alone and tell him to just use his hockey instinct and do what he thinks is best.

The other issue at play here is that it's great to say a player should just play well, but players also notice unfair treatment. So you have this collection of guys like Kotkaniemi, Galchenyuk, Eller, etc. who have been thrown around the line-up and can't get a spot as a top 6 center, yet at the same time, you have other guys who are just gifted those roles. David Desharnais was literally handed the 1C job next to Pacioretty despite the fact he had long stretches of inadequacy. I think at one point he went 30+ games without a goal and yet he was still the 1C. Danault, similarly, was handed the 3C job and then quickly after that the 1C job and the best wingers on the team, and he largely has kept his job despite being mired in a huge slump to start the year. After the Habs told Galchenyuk he couldn't be a center because he wasn't defensively responsible, they go out and trade for Drouin and make him their 1C for a full year despite the same defensive inadequacies. Scott Gomez got favorable treatment despite poor production for an extended time. Tomas Plekanec retained a top 6 role past his prime. Eric Staal to both the eye test and via advanced stats, has been the worst player on the Canadiens since he arrived and yet there he is still on the PP and getting more ice time some nights than Kotkaniemi. So you can't tell me the decisions being made are purely based on performance. Some guys were gifted favorable linemates and ice time and others have to work their butts off to get the same treatment.

Then you go back to earlier in the year and Kotkaniemi is playing on a line that's performing great, and the coach splits them up to try and get Danault going. If the decisions were based on merit, then why not reward Kotkaniemi and allow him to keep his line together? Nope. Kotkaniemi's development isn't important to the team. It's more important to them to make sure Danault is happy.

Last example... Max Pacioretty. An offensive player by nature. Recalled by the Habs and as a rookie played the bottom 6 with terrible linemates. And as a result, he was awful. He got sent down and played well in the minors and when he was recalled again the next year, he got called up to fill a hole on the top line next to Gomez and Gionta and he excelled there. Why? Because he was put in the right role. It would have been awful if the Habs had just given up on Pacioretty in his early 20's or recalled him again and once again made him "earn his promotion" by playing well as a 4th liner first. That's not how things work. Lots of other squads give their young skilled players the chance to succeed playing skill roles. The Habs favor veteran grinders and then complain about their youngsters under-performing because they can't turn a linemate like a Martinsen or a Flynn or a Dackell or a Lehkonen into a 30-goal scorer. I said this about Galchenyuk and I said this about Eller and I'll say it now about Kotkaniemi. Put him in a top 6 center role. Give him decent stable linemates. Give him a full season in that role without playing with his head. And then come back to me and tell me whether he's progressing properly or not.

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We should maybe keep in mind that playing center in the NHL isn't easy and requires a lot of learning on the job, which can be tough for kids, especially when they come from overseas at such a young age. Sure, some guys can make the jump right away based purely on talent but the vast majority of players can't. It's not all that uncommon for centers to take years to develop, there are several who didn't really break out until their 4th or even their 5th season. Guys like Couturier, Strome, Zibanejad, Lindholm, Karlsson, Granlund, or Bennett (small sample) come to mind. Other young centers who were arguably rushed didn't exactly perform as expected either, I'm thinking of guys like Patrick, Hughes, or Mittelstadt.

As for Kotkaniemi, I still like the kid and think there's a lot of untapped potential left to develop. I'm not sure he'll ever be a true #1 (Suzuki has a better chance IMO) but it is what it is, we didn't take the best player but rather the best center available at the draft and that's fine. If he turns out like Couturier or even Johansen, I'd be ecstatic. Maybe that's not his ceiling though and he turns out to be more like a ~50 point guy with occasional performance spikes. Either way, as others have said, the organization needs to avoid repeating past mistakes and either committ to developing him at center or trade him in a package to acquire an upgrade. I just don't see him as a winger, using him there (or as your 3rd or 4th line center with lesser-skilled guys on his wing) will accomplish nothing other than diminishing the trade value of one of the most valuable assets we currently have.

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1 hour ago, BigTed3 said:

Then you go back to earlier in the year and Kotkaniemi is playing on a line that's performing great, and the coach splits them up to try and get Danault going. If the decisions were based on merit, then why not reward Kotkaniemi and allow him to keep his line together? Nope. Kotkaniemi's development isn't important to the team. It's more important to them to make sure Danault is happy.

 

And more from this year ... KK starts performing while Suzuki is struggling midseason ... did we see Suzuki moved to wing?  Play 3rd line with guys like Lehkonen or Byron?  Nope

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But Kotkaniemi wasn’t part of the conversation when Ducharme looked at the lines he hopes to see in the playoffs.

“There are some combinations that we’re already familiar with,” said Ducharme. “We know there’s a lot of chemistry between Phillip Danault, Brendan Gallagher and Tomas Tatar. We expect them to play together. Generally, I like what Nick Suzuki and Tyler Toffoli can do together. It remains to be seen who’ll play on the right side. Joël Armia did well, but it was a little tougher last night. The line of Jake Evans, Paul Byron and Artturi Lehkonen was excellent. We’re counting on those combinations and we’ll make more decisions over time.

If you’re keeping track at home, that means Kotkaniemi is competing with Anderson, Corey Perry, Eric Staal and rookie Cole Caufield for one of three available spots.

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In all fairness Alex g is on his 5 th nhl team and had yet to catch on as a C man . Maybe the habs didn’t develop him properly , maybe they didn’t evaluate him

properly before the draft . Either way looks like their decision to part ways was correct as he could be out of the nhl next year 

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28 minutes ago, Regis22 said:

In all fairness Alex g is on his 5 th nhl team and had yet to catch on as a C man . Maybe the habs didn’t develop him properly , maybe they didn’t evaluate him

properly before the draft . Either way looks like their decision to part ways was correct as he could be out of the nhl next year 

True, but Alex G was at best a winger.   There were fundamental issues with his game that would have precluded him ever being an effective center.   That entire draft was weak in the first round for forwards as well.    Kotkaniemi has far better hockey IQ, plays a 200 foot game (can be argued whether he's good at it yet) that AG never did.    JK's first year as the youngest player in the NHL he put up 11g23a and has only regressed ... that just highlights the Habs total mismanagement of him.   Rather than giving him good linemates, PP time, playing him as the 2nd C ... they've bounced him around the lineup.

Any mistake or lack of production on his part and they slap him down and saddle him with grinders.  Meanwhile, Nick Suzuki during his mid-season slump was thrown out there time after time with the best wingers, on the first PP unit, while losing 70% of the faceoffs, not producing a point and being a defensive liability some nights.   What would a young JK think of that difference in treatment?

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1 hour ago, HabsAlways said:

   JK's first year as the youngest player in the NHL he put up 11g23a and has only regressed ... that just highlights the Habs total mismanagement of him.   Rather than giving him good linemates, PP time, playing him as the 2nd C ... they've bounced him around the lineup.

Did they really mismanage him or is he maybe not progressing  as everyone wanted? I don't know . Im not a good judge of NHL talent . I heard one commentator say he's being eatin alive.  I leave it up to the team to ice the best players that give them the best opportunity to win . I figure they are much better at it than I am . As much as we like to critique the Habs'  management of their player selection and deployment I cannot recall any player who we say should played more or in such and such a situation , that moved on elsewhere and succeeded, maybe Sergachev .  Hudon, Andrigehetto, Scherbak are all not in the NHL. Alex G is on his 5th NHL team and he too may not be in the NHL next yr .  Pateryn, Tinordi, Mete are all bottom pairing D men . Ryan Poehling - is he ready to be a regular NHL C?  IS Evans ready ? Is Suzuki, KK, Evans, Poehling really  a good foursome to have C's? Maybe the team knows more about the players than we do and that is why they are played more, less or not at all , 

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5 hours ago, jennifer_rocket said:

Jake Evans, though! :D

I hope he continues to excel tonight and into the post-season. I have no idea if his strong play is the "real" Jake Evans, but I sure hope it is!

Me too I really really like what he has been bringing to the team lately it is like he has found another gear.

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13 hours ago, caperns61 said:

 

Here is the is the thing, and i heard the same excuses for Galchenyk, he never gets to play center, he gets crap wingers, he plays on the fourth line, he doesn't get enough icetime. Maybe, just ,maybe its the player, or the scouting its rarely the delevopment. If a player is good enough and has the desire and committment, once they are drafted and playing in the NHL they find a way to make it happen, good players make other players better not the other way around :)

 

The difference for me isn't the skill, although different Galchenyuk probably has moe skill than Evans but where he loses big time is hokey smarts. Evans knows what he is doing on the ice and Danault appears to have that on defense but his offense has been lacking. Evan's speed and playmaking are still gttin better and his line with Lehkonen and Byron did well against McDavid and scoriing on top of that. It has been one of the few psoitives heading into the playoffs.

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20 hours ago, BigTed3 said:

Sure, the player has to perform, but so much of performance in sports is psychology as well. Guys like Galchenyuk and Kotkaniemi have tremendous skill and are fully capable of playing well, but when you toss them around the line-up and punish them for the slightest mistake, it's going to make them hesitate on the ice and lose that instinct to play hockey. Michel Bergeron was on during the intermission a couple of nights ago and he said the Habs have completely screwed over Kotkaniemi. He said one day they tell him he's a center, then they tell him he's a winger, then they tell him to play with different guys and they tell him to score playing with checking wingers, then they tell him he needs to shoot more and stop passing, then they tell him they want him to hit more and put on weight, then they tell him he's lost speed and to lose weight. Bergeron said that what the Habs need to do is stop over-coaching him and just let a young guy with skill play. He said if he were coach he would tell his assistants to leave Kotkaniemi alone and tell him to just use his hockey instinct and do what he thinks is best.

The other issue at play here is that it's great to say a player should just play well, but players also notice unfair treatment. So you have this collection of guys like Kotkaniemi, Galchenyuk, Eller, etc. who have been thrown around the line-up and can't get a spot as a top 6 center, yet at the same time, you have other guys who are just gifted those roles. David Desharnais was literally handed the 1C job next to Pacioretty despite the fact he had long stretches of inadequacy. I think at one point he went 30+ games without a goal and yet he was still the 1C. Danault, similarly, was handed the 3C job and then quickly after that the 1C job and the best wingers on the team, and he largely has kept his job despite being mired in a huge slump to start the year. After the Habs told Galchenyuk he couldn't be a center because he wasn't defensively responsible, they go out and trade for Drouin and make him their 1C for a full year despite the same defensive inadequacies. Scott Gomez got favorable treatment despite poor production for an extended time. Tomas Plekanec retained a top 6 role past his prime. Eric Staal to both the eye test and via advanced stats, has been the worst player on the Canadiens since he arrived and yet there he is still on the PP and getting more ice time some nights than Kotkaniemi. So you can't tell me the decisions being made are purely based on performance. Some guys were gifted favorable linemates and ice time and others have to work their butts off to get the same treatment.

Then you go back to earlier in the year and Kotkaniemi is playing on a line that's performing great, and the coach splits them up to try and get Danault going. If the decisions were based on merit, then why not reward Kotkaniemi and allow him to keep his line together? Nope. Kotkaniemi's development isn't important to the team. It's more important to them to make sure Danault is happy.

Last example... Max Pacioretty. An offensive player by nature. Recalled by the Habs and as a rookie played the bottom 6 with terrible linemates. And as a result, he was awful. He got sent down and played well in the minors and when he was recalled again the next year, he got called up to fill a hole on the top line next to Gomez and Gionta and he excelled there. Why? Because he was put in the right role. It would have been awful if the Habs had just given up on Pacioretty in his early 20's or recalled him again and once again made him "earn his promotion" by playing well as a 4th liner first. That's not how things work. Lots of other squads give their young skilled players the chance to succeed playing skill roles. The Habs favor veteran grinders and then complain about their youngsters under-performing because they can't turn a linemate like a Martinsen or a Flynn or a Dackell or a Lehkonen into a 30-goal scorer. I said this about Galchenyuk and I said this about Eller and I'll say it now about Kotkaniemi. Put him in a top 6 center role. Give him decent stable linemates. Give him a full season in that role without playing with his head. And then come back to me and tell me whether he's progressing properly or not.

Excellent!

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3 hours ago, electron58 said:

Excellent!

 

23 hours ago, BigTed3 said:

Sure, the player has to perform, but so much of performance in sports is psychology as well. Guys like Galchenyuk and Kotkaniemi have tremendous skill and are fully capable of playing well, but when you toss them around the line-up and punish them for the slightest mistake, it's going to make them hesitate on the ice and lose that instinct to play hockey. Michel Bergeron was on during the intermission a couple of nights ago and he said the Habs have completely screwed over Kotkaniemi. He said one day they tell him he's a center, then they tell him he's a winger, then they tell him to play with different guys and they tell him to score playing with checking wingers, then they tell him he needs to shoot more and stop passing, then they tell him they want him to hit more and put on weight, then they tell him he's lost speed and to lose weight. Bergeron said that what the Habs need to do is stop over-coaching him and just let a young guy with skill play. He said if he were coach he would tell his assistants to leave Kotkaniemi alone and tell him to just use his hockey instinct and do what he thinks is best.

The other issue at play here is that it's great to say a player should just play well, but players also notice unfair treatment. So you have this collection of guys like Kotkaniemi, Galchenyuk, Eller, etc. who have been thrown around the line-up and can't get a spot as a top 6 center, yet at the same time, you have other guys who are just gifted those roles. David Desharnais was literally handed the 1C job next to Pacioretty despite the fact he had long stretches of inadequacy. I think at one point he went 30+ games without a goal and yet he was still the 1C. Danault, similarly, was handed the 3C job and then quickly after that the 1C job and the best wingers on the team, and he largely has kept his job despite being mired in a huge slump to start the year. After the Habs told Galchenyuk he couldn't be a center because he wasn't defensively responsible, they go out and trade for Drouin and make him their 1C for a full year despite the same defensive inadequacies. Scott Gomez got favorable treatment despite poor production for an extended time. Tomas Plekanec retained a top 6 role past his prime. Eric Staal to both the eye test and via advanced stats, has been the worst player on the Canadiens since he arrived and yet there he is still on the PP and getting more ice time some nights than Kotkaniemi. So you can't tell me the decisions being made are purely based on performance. Some guys were gifted favorable linemates and ice time and others have to work their butts off to get the same treatment.

Then you go back to earlier in the year and Kotkaniemi is playing on a line that's performing great, and the coach splits them up to try and get Danault going. If the decisions were based on merit, then why not reward Kotkaniemi and allow him to keep his line together? Nope. Kotkaniemi's development isn't important to the team. It's more important to them to make sure Danault is happy.

Last example... Max Pacioretty. An offensive player by nature. Recalled by the Habs and as a rookie played the bottom 6 with terrible linemates. And as a result, he was awful. He got sent down and played well in the minors and when he was recalled again the next year, he got called up to fill a hole on the top line next to Gomez and Gionta and he excelled there. Why? Because he was put in the right role. It would have been awful if the Habs had just given up on Pacioretty in his early 20's or recalled him again and once again made him "earn his promotion" by playing well as a 4th liner first. That's not how things work. Lots of other squads give their young skilled players the chance to succeed playing skill roles. The Habs favor veteran grinders and then complain about their youngsters under-performing because they can't turn a linemate like a Martinsen or a Flynn or a Dackell or a Lehkonen into a 30-goal scorer. I said this about Galchenyuk and I said this about Eller and I'll say it now about Kotkaniemi. Put him in a top 6 center role. Give him decent stable linemates. Give him a full season in that role without playing with his head. And then come back to me and tell me whether he's progressing properly or not.

It's the NHL the ole you have to nuture coddle these players you can't hurt their fragile ego's ...........oh give me a break! They're professionals that have been playing hockey their whole lives. Hopefully at some point they had a few tough coaches. In the NHL guess what the actual great star players do learn to play defense a 200' foot game and learn to play different roles when needed. All players no matter of their draft status or how great they were in a lesser league need to earn their ice time and work their way up the line up. This "kids" are making millions and yes some times they need to play where the coach or team needs them. There should be no entitlement because of draft status or position. Scotty Bowman used to shuffle lines all the time to get other lines going and put players (even stars) in different positions. He didn't always worry about keeping star players happy but he did win!! A lot of players whined while playing for him but then later on praised him for making them better players. The kids are a lot tougher mentally then most give them credit for and the good ones will over come instead of pout or quit on you. JK has the tools and flashes of brilliance. It is up to him to show it game in/out. He's had a lot of opportunities but he has to be able to drive his line mates not the other way around. He hasn't "yet" lit the world on fire , Will he is up to him.....to be seen. He may be a 1st or 2nd line center or a 2nd to 3rd line center, that just never gets to the next level on a sustained basis. He has the tools , some it does take longer. Hopefully he will break out to be seen.

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22 hours ago, Regis22 said:

Did they really mismanage him or is he maybe not progressing  as everyone wanted? I don't know . Im not a good judge of NHL talent . I heard one commentator say he's being eatin alive.  I leave it up to the team to ice the best players that give them the best opportunity to win . I figure they are much better at it than I am . As much as we like to critique the Habs'  management of their player selection and deployment I cannot recall any player who we say should played more or in such and such a situation , that moved on elsewhere and succeeded, maybe Sergachev .  Hudon, Andrigehetto, Scherbak are all not in the NHL. Alex G is on his 5th NHL team and he too may not be in the NHL next yr .  Pateryn, Tinordi, Mete are all bottom pairing D men . Ryan Poehling - is he ready to be a regular NHL C?  IS Evans ready ? Is Suzuki, KK, Evans, Poehling really  a good foursome to have C's? Maybe the team knows more about the players than we do and that is why they are played more, less or not at all , 

KK has had 18 different line combinations this year ... sure you could argue they're trying to get him going, you could also argue that consistent amount of change is going to directly lead to inconsistency. 

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Or as one fan tweeted 

"It's so nice to see Suzuki excelling with a team that trusts him, supports him through slumps, and gives him all the tools he needs to succeed. Kotkaniemi will have all that too someday. The team that gives him those things will not be the Montreal Canadiens."

 

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2 hours ago, HabsAlways said:

Or as one fan tweeted 

"It's so nice to see Suzuki excelling with a team that trusts him, supports him through slumps, and gives him all the tools he needs to succeed. Kotkaniemi will have all that too someday. The team that gives him those things will not be the Montreal Canadiens."

 

Suzuki plays a steady smart 200' game though so when he has slumps he is usually still playing strong positional play and being responsible. "Slumps" or not scoring are not the whole game there is much more to being a complete player. JK has had a lot of opportunities , he's also been cut a lot of slack especially from fans compared to other players.

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1 hour ago, CaptWelly said:

Suzuki plays a steady smart 200' game though so when he has slumps he is usually still playing strong positional play and being responsible. "Slumps" or not scoring are not the whole game there is much more to being a complete player. JK has had a lot of opportunities , he's also been cut a lot of slack especially from fans compared to other players.

KK also plays a strong 200 foot game ... and when Suzuki was slumping, not scoring, he was also costing us goals, and couldn't win a faceoff for his life.      Bottom line is they're not treated the same way from the eye test.    Suzuki has not been demoted or moved to wing at any point, despite KK being stronger in the faceoff circle and at their worst times being just as good defensively if not better than Suzuki.     And to compound the argument ... Staal is who is an utter tire fire on the ice gets more ice time than KK some nights, including PP time.    

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