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The Chicoutimi Cucumber

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Everything posted by The Chicoutimi Cucumber

  1. Good analysis Kaos, but remember - Abeischer has promising career numbers. So what's more relevant, three great seasons as backup, one absolutely outstanding season as a starter, and one up-and-down season, or three bad games? I'm not saying he's the second coming of Patrick Roy, but to dismiss him now seems premature. (Remember how quick everyone was to dismiss Huet after he stunk out the joint early this year and then got hurt?) Let's get through the season, let Abby regroup, and see where we are come Fall. I think he should be resigned - he'll be cheap; let him battle with Danis for backup duties, or Huet for the starter's role. The internal competition can only be good and gives us lots of options at a key position. If, after the dust settles, he still sucks, move him, count your losses on the Theo deal and move on. As for attracting UFAs, I believe Gainey has concluded that he needs to overpay to successfully overcome all the negatives associated with playing in Montreal at this particular point. This may be why saving the extra dough on Theo's contract was key. If he doesn't take a very serious run at Arnott, and either of Ottawa's stellar UFA D-men, I'll be surprised.
  2. It's scary to contemplate but...COME ON. It's not like this guy has been a total piece of crap. His career numbers suggest that he's at least a good goalie...he was playing very well before the trade...and frankly, how can the Habs have TWO established goalies go utterly in the tank in the same season? That is absolutely bizarre, so the odds suggest that Abby is probably just having trouble adjusting to the new team, new style of play, new opponents (different conference), etc.. The key will be for him not to have his confidence shattered in the way Theo had his, by the high-pressure Montreal pressure cooker. If he can survive this season, I suspect he'll bounce back and play well in 2006-07. Or at least, as I say, that has to be the law of averages.
  3. Hmmm...actually, I think that Savard's trading of a washed-up Muller for Pierre Turgeon was a brilliant move (even if the supplementary trading of Schneider for Malakhov wasn't quite as stellar). Savard managed to acquire a genuine first-line centre in exchange for a player that had gotten old really fast. I see what you're saying about 'owing' something to a player, but frankly, that's how teams go from being champs to stinking out the joint. (Of course, Reggie Houle went on to dump Turgeon *and* Conroy for...Shane Corson, so it came to the same thing).
  4. I agree, that's disgraceful in principle...on the other hand, Leafs fans are so preternaturally obnoxious that - depending on how this guy was acting - it might be simple poetic justice.
  5. Muller may be the most underrated habs of the past two decades. Unfortunately, because of the massive Toronto-centred bias of the national media, everyone remembers him from his Leafs days, when he was a pure third-line grinder. With us, he was in his prime - a slick passer, great in the slot, lots of offense (40 goals, I believe), devastating body-checks, awesome leader: truly a complete player in every sense, including offensively. Apart from Patrick Roy, no player contributed more to the 1993 Cup run, and he would have been a worthy choice as Conne Smythe recipient. People say that that 1993 team had no talent, but the fact is Kirk Muller in his prime would have been a terrific No. 1 centre on ANY team. At his peak, again, a Gordie Howe for the 1990s. However, his number shouldn't be retired, and neither should Saku's. This isn't the Buffalo sabres we're talking about. For the Habs to retire your jersey, you need to have been one of the all-time great players of your generation. Great as these guys are, neither qualifies.
  6. Et le premiere etoile... KOVALEV'S ELBOW! Suspension or not, Tucker had that coming, the little turd - and kudos to Kovy for meting out the punishment himself.
  7. I'm not saying Koivu is infallible - he's clearly feeling the effects from the Olympics right now. But to go from that to concluding that he doesn't really care about the Cup (which is disproven by his playoff track record) or that we'll 'never win with him' is silly.
  8. 1. Saku also beat your supposedly unsurpassable hero Joe Thornton when they played in 2002 AND 2. Saku was ALSO fighting through very serious injuries in 2004 and STILL he made Thornton look useless. Sak's playoff track-record speaks for itself. The man consistently overachieves when it counts. Gimme a break.
  9. The whole logic of this thread is defective. There's a huge difference between producing at peak level over an entire season and revving it up for a crucial championship or playoff series. Saku does NOT want to win Gold more than he wants to win the Cup; his incredible playoff play, whenever the Habs DO make the dance, proves that. Last year he outplayed Thornton despite a massive size differential AND bruised lung and ribs and whatnot. The thing is, a player of Saku's size and fragility will never put together 80 great games in a row; especially when he doesn't have the depth around him to take the heat off (a bona fide second line C would help). He is a player who ups his game in tournament environments when everything is on the line. What more do you want. On a really strong team, Saks is a 1A centreman - but find me a team that wouldn't love to have him.
  10. He's the key. If he's not back, we lose. It's practically guaranteed - especially given the little 'extra assistance' the Leafs tend to get from the refereeing in Leafs-Habs games.
  11. Komisarek's potential, I think, is as a bone-crushing shut-down defenceman, not any kind of powerplay QB or rush-starter. So even if he develops as he ought, we'd still need someone else to manage the whole ice in the way Markov does...look for Bob to go hard for Redden or any other strong UFA defencemen in the summer. (Chara!! A habs!!! What a great thought, however unlikely).
  12. The Habs are struggling somewhat for one simple reason: Markhov is hurt. That's the beginning and the end of the story. This team simply cannot win without its number one D-man. Huet is clearly a legitimate goalie, the question is his ceiling. Can he carry a team for a whole season? Or is he a 1A guy? Now's when we find out, it seems to me. Either way, though, unless Abeischer suddenly loses his grip, Gainey's got it covered.
  13. Interesting (although subjecting specific players to merciless ongoing booing is not unique to this generation of Habs fans; JC Tremblay faced the same thing in the 1960s, and others probably have too). I think the explanation may lie partly in the soulless blandness of the team in recent years: http://forums.habsworld.net/index.php?showtopic=6052
  14. I just noticed - prior to tonight, Komi has ONE point in 55 games!! That's brutal, maaaan. Even Craig Ludwig used to get more points than that. I also notice that, according to Yahoo boxscores, Ribeiro is getting almost double Koivu's ice-time tonight. Interesting.
  15. Well, when I started this thread, I didn't mean 'style of play,' whether boring or exciting. For instance, the Leafs may play a lot of boring games, but I wouldn't call them a bland set of personalities; between Belfour, Lindros, Allison, McCabe, etc., they've got quite a few memorable characters on that team. I'm talking more about whether a team has standout individual personalities. For instance, I remember one time Chelios threw the puck into the crowd with his hands in a desperate scramble in the Habs end. Or Roy, talking to his goalposts. Or Lafleur's crazy smoke-and-booze-a-thons. Or Lyle Odelin grinning at everyone he saw, no matter what the situation. Or Kirk Muller's blood and guts toughness and skill. Or Kovalev's ineffable moodiness and jaw-dropping talent. Or Souray's smouldering erraticism and old-school demeanour. These players are COOL. The Habs don't have enough memorable personalities like this; they're all middle-of-the-road Jan Bulises. The result is a team without a real identity, and that, perhaps, relates to the lack of chemistry. Or so I would argue. But maybe it's true - maybe you need serious playoff runs to really bring character to the fore.
  16. Apart from Souray, Koivu, Kovy, maybe Ryder, maybe Ribs...does this team have any really memorable players? I don't mean *superstar* players, or even good players, but rather players with noteworthy character, the type that stick in your head and that you remember for years, that give a team an identity. In fact, by moving Theo, we got rid of one of the few memorable personalities on the team. Consider past teams - guys like Chris Nilan, Patrick Roy, Carbo, Chelios, Shutt, Dryden - all interesting, eccentric types that made you love 'em. Not to rag on Bulis, but I'd pick him as the archetypical player from the 2006 Habs. Not too exciting, not too offensive in any sense of the term, basically decent, but essentially unmemorable. Bland. Indeed, the team as a whole is fast but not extraordinarily fast, small but not extraordinarily small, young but not too young, good but not too good, etc, etc. This may be why I find myself caring somewhat less about the fate of this edition than I did about past teams. Thoughts?
  17. Post of the year! And pretty much sadly accurate. They'll limp into the playoffs, you know. And look really shitty doing it
  18. Great post indeed. Now we need a supplementary post listing UFAs likely to be on the market this summer - since it's a safe bet that Bob dealt Theodore to clear up cap room, the questions are, who's available, who might be interested in coming here, and who Bob might be interested in. Any help?
  19. Markov and Koivu are the two irreplaceable players on the current roster - we have no other D who can serve as a credible quarterback for any length of time, and no other C who comes close to approaching elite-level skills. Sof if Markov's injury is serious, we're in BIIIIIIIGG trouble. :puke:
  20. All pure goal scorers are streaky. And few pure goal scorers do much more than score goals. Ryder is in the classic mould and is waaaaaayyy to valuable to trade. We've waited years for the Habs to finally produce a real trigger man, and if Ryder isn't that yet, he's close. Just ride out the slump, he'll be fine.
  21. Pierre Macguire is THE best hockey commentator, bar none. People around here crap all over him because he sometimes criticizes the Habs. Give me a break. Dave, I DEFINITELY have a question for him. Please ask him if (a) we have seen enough to be able to say with some confidence that Huet is a legitimate #1 goalie in the NHL and b., if so, whether he thinks the Habs should move José Theodore in Huet's favour. I'd love to hear his thoughts. And as a Port Moody-dwelling ex-Montrealer, I'll definitely be listening
  22. It's not 'what Bertuzzi has done,' i.e., the Moore debacle (although that was a disgrace). It's not even that he's an asshole, which he probably is. It's that he doesn't produce reliably, vanishes in the playoffs, and consistently hurts you with stupid penalties and/or suspensions at key times. He is not worth the price tag and is ridiculously overrated as a first-liner. That's all. Now Bourdon, that's another story. B)
  23. Souray's name keeps surfacing here in Vancouver. But I can say without hesitation that a Souray-Bertuzzi move would be a stupid trade for the Habs. Betruzzi is an unreliable, unmotivated, expensive head case who has a lousy playoff record and has been living off one monster season. In fact, the only trusty thing about him is that he will self-destruct and hurt his team when it really counts (see his boneheaded offensive zone penalty in Turin, or the whole Steve Moore debacle). Even so, he WOULD add some value to our 2nd line because of his size alone and his occasional stellar night; and maybe a change of scenery and Gainey's steady hand would bring him around a bit; so I'd consider dealing Souray (who is no superstar himself) for him IF we had other comparable d-men in the system. As much as I believe in Komi, he's shown none of the offensive flair or leadership qualities Souray brings. We should be trading to ACQUIRE a defenceman, not the reverse - deal a Zednik, say, and get a useful D-man back; and trust one of the rookies to replace Zeddy up front. Bob, say it ain't so!!
  24. Koivu should be rested and given the night off. I'm afraid that we shouldn't expect much from him in the stretch drive - he will be exhausted. emotionally and physically. Other players will have to step up. Since they probably won't (Ribeiro, Zednik, this means you, you pieces of [EXPLETIVE DELETED]) the odds are that Koivu will face even more pressure and that the team stands a decent chance of melting down. Pessimistic? Who, me?
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