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The Chicoutimi Cucumber

POLL: How do you feel about the future?

Optimism, pessimism, or skepticism: rate the Habs' future!  

40 members have voted

  1. 1. 2018-19 is over. Thinking about a five-year window, what's your feeling about where the Habs are headed?

    • They will win the Cup within five years. Book it.
      1
    • They are firmly on the path becoming top-tier contenders
      19
    • They will evolve into a competitive playoff team with an outside chance of winning if everything goes just right (much like they were from 2007-2015)
      17
    • They'll likely be a bubble team going forward
      1
    • They'll regress next season with no clear path to success beyond that
      2
    • Other (explain!)
      0


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I've had mixed success with polls in the past, but I'm trying again here...fingers crossed it works :)

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Can't vote on this until after the Habs win the draft lottery. 

  • Upvote 2

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1 hour ago, Trizzak said:

Can't vote on this until after the Habs win the draft lottery. 

 

:lol:

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I'm cautiously optimistic about the next 5 years. Alot will depend on how we develop some of our top prospects (KK, Suzuki, Poehling, Brook, Juulsen)

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1 hour ago, Habsfan said:

I'm cautiously optimistic about the next 5 years. Alot will depend on how we develop some of our top prospects (KK, Suzuki, Poehling, Brook, Juulsen)

And Romanov ;) 

 

Oh and Kakko 

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In all honesty, I think we could nab a real gem with the 15th assuming we don’t win the lotto. But god would that 1-2 pick be nice.. 

 

theres about a 2% chance of getting one of those 2 though.

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1 hour ago, Meller93 said:

And Romanov ;) 

 

Oh and Kakko 

True, I had forgotten about Romanov. Who's Kakko?

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1 hour ago, Habsfan said:

True, I had forgotten about Romanov. Who's Kakko?

Kaapo Kakko, he’s drawing comparisons to Barkov and even Peter Forsberg. Rated right behind Jack Hughes in the upcoming draft, but i’m one of the minority who like Kakko over Hughes.

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Adding a puck moving LHD makes us a playoff team next year by a comfortable margin.  Adding that puck moving LHD AND upgrading our top 6 goalscoring (Byron and Drouin each drop a line) would make us a playoff team with the potential to ride a hot Carey Price into a deep run.  A lot hinges on this offseason...the usual Bergevin swing/miss where all he has at the end is leftover cap space to show simply will not do.

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3 hours ago, sbhatt said:

Adding a puck moving LHD makes us a playoff team next year by a comfortable margin.  Adding that puck moving LHD AND upgrading our top 6 goalscoring (Byron and Drouin each drop a line) would make us a playoff team with the potential to ride a hot Carey Price into a deep run.  A lot hinges on this offseason...the usual Bergevin swing/miss where all he has at the end is leftover cap space to show simply will not do.

 

You forgot about sorting out the PP. :)

 

Kotkaniemi should definitely improve in his second season, and hopefully move into the top six. Left wing (Byron/Drouin), though, do we have any realistic prospects? Or is this actually going to be a weakness?

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Cukes, maybe you should have waited a few days to let the glow of Poehling's hat trick fade a bit.  I will say that I'm more optimistic about our outlook now than I was at the beginning of the year; we have a better, deeper group of forwards than I gave us credit for.  It doesn't look so hot when compared with what our division rivals will be stocked with for the next five years, however.   

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Went with "They will evolve into a competitive playoff team with an outside chance of winning if everything goes just right (much like they were from 2007-2015) "

Had they drafted and developped their dmen BEFORE their forwards so they could hit their prime at the same time, I would have voted "They are firmly on the path becoming top-tier contenders."

IMO, no other team than Tampa Bay should be confident enough to book a SC within 5 years.

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I voted for the third option. However, that's being more pessimistic about the development of our current prospects. Will the new staff in Laval benefit long term? I'll admit I have not followed the Rocket at all, so I don't know. I think Bergevin is "ok" on the trade front, and while he's not shy to make the big trade, his bigger successes have come from the smaller moves (I guess Patches and Chucky weren't small trades, and they both provided a positive impact). Impact UFA signings are pretty much nonexistent.

 

So, can the Habs improve on those three things that haven't been strong points for the past 5 years is the question. Can we logically expect an impact UFA signing to provide elite talent to supplement the roster? Panarin reportedly has turned down the Habs before (2015) so while I'd love Panarin this year, I'd say it ain't happening. The other of the big three, Karlsson, Duchene? Will Bergevin throw a wad of money around at UFAs? That doesn't seem to be the Habs MO, but it sure is silly to not spend to the cap. If they don't sign a big name UFA, who would that cap space potentially go towards? Skinner, Gardiner, Eberle, etc.

 

Trades, who's out there that may be traded (LD?, top 6) that the Habs could acquire that would not cost future assets (picks, prospects)?

 

Prospects, 2017 appears to be a good draft class, hopefully 2018 will as well. Moving much further back, the cupboard is pretty bare.

 

In short, I dunno, but at least the team this year was a hard working team that didn't mail in many games this year. There's the old saying "Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard." We have hard workers, now it's time to get more talent on the team.

 

 

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13 hours ago, BCHabnut said:

I really enjoyed Brian Wilde's post mordum. He really tapped his inner cc. Worth a read.

 

https://globalnews.ca/news/5137028/call-of-the-wilde-state-of-the-union/

 

Wilde on his highest of horses.  I agree that missing the playoffs next year should get Bergy canned, and probably Timmins and co. as well.  I'm not in favour, however, of handicapping ourselves in the longterm by giving up multiple first rounders to sign an RFA, or by overpaying a UFA by a couple million.  Panarin and Duchene are great but they aren't worth 11M.  What happens when we need to re-sign Domi, Kotka, etc?  

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4 hours ago, Neech said:

 

Wilde on his highest of horses.  I agree that missing the playoffs next year should get Bergy canned, and probably Timmins and co. as well.  I'm not in favour, however, of handicapping ourselves in the longterm by giving up multiple first rounders to sign an RFA, or by overpaying a UFA by a couple million.  Panarin and Duchene are great but they aren't worth 11M.  What happens when we need to re-sign Domi, Kotka, etc?  

 

I like Wilde's overall attitude: "enough celebrating failure already." I feel exactly the same way. When Bergy says he's happy with the year, he is measuring results based on the ridiculously low bar set by his own mismanagement, comparing this failed group to last year's much worse failed group and therefore anointing it a success. Talk about mediocrity.

 

That said, no, I've never been too keen on the RFA route. I do agree that sitting on millions when there are high-impact UFAs available is unacceptable. The team does not have super high-end prospects, so the only way to add that level of talent is on the UFA market. Karlsson or ever Gardner are the ones we should be targeting, especially Karlsson, who, even though he's a RD, would make our team significantly better overnight.

 

I regard the people who ticked "we are firmly on the path to becoming high-end contenders" as allowing hope to override cool-headed analysis.

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3 hours ago, The Chicoutimi Cucumber said:

I regard the people who ticked "we are firmly on the path to becoming high-end contenders" as allowing hope to override cool-headed analysis.

 

The way I see it, we are on the right path, although clearly there is more work to be done yet to become a contender, we cannot just sit and wait. But I do believe (at this point) that this is the right path.

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9 hours ago, Neech said:

I'm not in favour, however, of handicapping ourselves in the longterm by giving up multiple first rounders to sign an RFA, or by overpaying a UFA by a couple million.  Panarin and Duchene are great but they aren't worth 11M.  What happens when we need to re-sign Domi, Kotka, etc?  

 

RFAs seem like a good deal at first glance, but really you are trading draft picks for cap space. I view having to pursue the RFA market as having mismanaged your cap space, and being willing to give up the future for the short term.  Of course there will be some exceptional RFAs sometimes, but in general it's not what we should be doing.

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11 hours ago, tomh009 said:

 

The way I see it, we are on the right path, although clearly there is more work to be done yet to become a contender, we cannot just sit and wait. But I do believe (at this point) that this is the right path.

 

What is the path, though? Developing young players - ? That's fine, I agree. But if your young players are, as a whole, not strikingly better than other organizations', then there is no particular reason to think you're 'firmly on the path to becoming contenders.' Our most elite talents are still, as far as I can see, an aging Weber and the admirable but not-eternal Carey Price, and there seems to be no reason  to believe that anyone in the system stands to have a career on the level of either of those guys. A crop of good-not-great players likely translates into a good-not-great team. For this reason, I believe that the realistic choice on this poll is 'competitive playoff team with an outside chance.' 

 

Now if we go out an add a massive talent like Karlsson, well, that'll change the picture. But right now, I think the optimists are allowing hope to trump objectivity. 

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Shortsighted view: Ultimately, until we can see the moves that occur this offseason (can Bergy have 2 decent ones in a row?), objectively, we're no better than last year, which is a team that failed to make the playoffs. Suffice to say, failure to improve the D corps will lead to more of the same. Adding some offensive firepower won't hurt either, but I'm not sure if both can adequately be addressed in one offseason. As nearly every sports outlet is saying, if Bergevin doesn't utilize that cap space they've left on the table the past two years, he's doing it wrong. 

 

Explicitly counting on the development of prospects to elevate the team into elite status does not seem wise.

 

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, The Chicoutimi Cucumber said:

 

What is the path, though? Developing young players - ? That's fine, I agree. But if your young players are, as a whole, not strikingly better than other organizations', then there is no particular reason to think you're 'firmly on the path to becoming contenders.' Our most elite talents are still, as far as I can see, an aging Weber and the admirable but not-eternal Carey Price, and there seems to be no reason  to believe that anyone in the system stands to have a career on the level of either of those guys. A crop of good-not-great players likely translates into a good-not-great team. For this reason, I believe that the realistic choice on this poll is 'competitive playoff team with an outside chance.' 

 

Now if we go out an add a massive talent like Karlsson, well, that'll change the picture. But right now, I think the optimists are allowing hope to trump objectivity. 

 

Three of the top four scorers in the NHL play on teams that missed the playoffs. 

 

The path is building a team.... not just having "elite talents".  

 

Having Three solid lines, Four good defencemen, and a solid number 1 goalie (with a couple elite talents in that group... Price, KK, and one more) with the rest being all good talent.  Is going to make you a dangerous team. 

 

Based on advanced stats, there is a lot to suggest that KK is on his way to being an elite talent.  His two way play was elite for his age.  He may not become McDavid in scoring, but there is plenty in his advanced stats to suggest that he is on the path to being a Bergeron on Kopitar. 

 

 

 

kotk1.png

 

 

 

https://theathletic.com/856210/2019/03/07/bouchard-when-analysts-conclude-kotkaniemi-rhymes-with-selke/

 

 

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Basically youve got an 18 year old who is already one of the NHL's top defensive forwards as a rookie and is only going to get better (and we also all project he's gonna score too) 

 

Thats very much on the path to Elite

 

Note: numbers were all as of March 1st

 

He fell a bit down the stretch as Julien correctly noted that he was out of gas and even scratched him at times... but his October - March is a large sample size and he should be able to keep growing that going forward.  As he gets stronger and adds endurance, he will be even better

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27 minutes ago, huzer said:

 objectively, we're no better than last year?

 

18-19 247g 14th

17-18 207g 29th

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14 minutes ago, DON said:

 

18-19 247g 14th

17-18 207g 29th

 

I'm talking 19-20 vs 18-19. Corrected phrasing would be "If we make no moves this summer, objectively we will be no better next season than we were this past season". I'm not saying no moves will be made, just that until we see the results of this offseason, expecting a different result next year shouldn't be a given.

 

I'm all for eternal optimism, but expecting progression from all players while not expecting regression from some doesn't seem realistic. I'm also usually wrong about any of my prognostications, too.

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I don’t think one creates an open ended poll with the expectation that there is an actual answer and that those who do not choose it are incorrect in some way.

 

Two major things changed from last year to this one. 

 

1) We dealt away our captain and Shea Weber became our “leader”.

 

I liked Pacioretty more than anyone on here. With that being said, the culture was changed and we now have a new leadership group. Shea Weber was also injured for half this year and moving forward we should hope to have him in the lineup on a more consistent basis. Regardless, the small sample size demonstrates a leader who gives it his all every shift. Something people complained about with a former captain. In this respect, Gallagher would be a fine future captain should anything ever happen to Shea. The future looks great in that respect.

 

2) Our prospect pool and junior development got infinitely better.

 

After last season, we drafted a 3rd overall center who made the team in his first year, and rightly so. He definitely deserved the spot even more than someone like Mete did in his first year. Sylvain Lefebvre also got canned, a true thorn in the organization’s thigh. I am much more knowledgeable about veterans than prospects in general but we do have a more promising group of youngens coming in. Romanov, Kotkanieni, Poehling, Brook. Even Juulsen and Mete. I’m sure there’s more. But these are all actually impact players. Not Michael McCarron or even Daniel Carr (who I like). We also now have a better junior development group when it comes to the Laval Rocket. 

 

These two points are tied in with the fact that the Habs drastically improved their play this year, and that Carey Price played some of the best hockey he has played in recent years. Price still has years left in him within this “5 year window” and any team that makes it into the playoffs with Price automatically has an “outside shot” of winning. 

 

It’s true that most teams in the league should basically fall into the “outside chance of winning” category but the improvements made this year were for a real reason, and if our turnaround rests on a 96 point season that has us missing the playoffs, any improvement should have us looking fairly strong. 

 

Choosing that the Habs will evolve into a competitive team is the safe, as well as somewhat pessimistic choice, but the Habs should certainly have a contending team within these 5 years. How many years it lasts is another question as it is extremely difficult in the modern NHL. There is still an architect that needs to put us over the top, and our off seasons generally seem to be our weakness. 

 

 

 

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