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Plekanec: "I'm not going to Russia"


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One night in the car, I was listening to my sirius satellite radio, a french language sports show. Eric Fichaud, the retired goalie, said something about Plex. For what it's worth, he said Plex skates 150 mph, but takes the long way to get to the puck. He said he was known for this, and was easy to defend against. Sure, he LOOKS like he's working hard, dancing and darting in and out of traffic, but, well, you see his point. Now, c'mon, I think Fichaud's right on...

That is fair comment. Pleks does tend to avoid traffic. You can work out hard, be "committed," chug incredibly hard around the perimeter all you like; no matter how hard you're "working," you will be useless. I like Pleks and think that he has the potential to be a very useful all-around C, but he seems to lack:

1-confidence

2-courage

I think he has more of the latter than the former, but it only gets activated when his confidence is high. Basically he has to man up. And this will be his last season before he gets completely pegged as a mentally fragile player who can't take the NHL game. The guy's turning 27 - time to stop saying "gee, I'm learning and I sure am committed" and time to start taking responsibility for leading on the ice. Otherwise he will be the second coming of Jan Bulis.

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Pleks is vastly over rated on this team. He is never going to be a top number 2 guy. When he plays well, he is a average number 2 centre. Most of the time, he is a number 3 guy. The problem with him is he has Bulis disease. He had a good few months with Kovy and now figures he is a offensive centre who should be scoring and getting loads of money.

If he would focus on being a great 2 way centre with solid defensive play, he will have a great career as a number 3 guy who can fill in on the 2nd line due to injury. If he carries on like last year trying to focus on offense, he will be neither a great defensive guy or a great offensive guy.

Shame we don't still have Ribs, as a Gomez, ribs, Pleks combo down the middle would be very competitive. Ah well, maybe one of the vaunted rookies will surprise and give us a real number 2 guy.

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Its a shame about Plex. I do like him but Plex seems to be like Higgins in several regards. Both have a lot of potential but neither seem to be able to reach their potential even when given more responsibility and they both lack consistency. Both tend to have great hot streaks in between prolonged slumps.

Personally I dont really see the need for Plex any more.

Everybody is saying we need another centre, and by my count thats not entirely true. Laps has way more offensive prowess than most of you think. I wouldnt mind seeing Laps replace Plex on the 2nd line and let Chips and Metro fight it out for 3rd and 4th. After all Laps is the Habs largest C and you can tell by looking at Laps that he has been working out during the off seasons to get bigger and stronger. Every year Laps has out done his last seasons best and I think if he is promoted to 2nd C that this wouldnt change. Laps would adapt yet again and flourish in his 3rd different assignment/role in 3 years.

Laps 1st year he was the agitator, 2nd year he was 3rd line C shut down defensive guy. and year 3 he could be the 2nd line C leading the 2nd line of attack. Laps is blazing fast too and he does have a nose for the net, and if you gave him an offensive 1st assignment I am sure you would see other teams routinely tripping, hooking, and holding him. The PP alone that Laps could generate being 2nd C IMO would make him a better choice for 2nd C than Plex.

If Plex does agree to reasonable contract terms I wouldnt ship him out immediately but I would still consider swapping Plex's usual role with Laps.

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Working hard = not playing like a little girl.

If the rest of our plays had the guts and drive of Plekanec, we would have been a much better team last season. He isn't a big hitter but MOST offensive (Pleks is two-way, but he's offensive) forwards are perimeter players. Unless you have Ovechkin on your hands, finesse players find open spaces where they have room to play with the puck. It doesn't make him soft.

Just because he said it himself, everyone jumps on it (like Carbo with communication) - people take what they can get, I guess. He was in a slump and was disappointed with his play so he said he was playing like a little girl. Had Koivu said the same thing, people would have accused him of being a figure skater too. But I guess you would have said that it was a mark of the high standards that the great Sakic Koivu holds himself to.

Find other players to pick on besides the hard-working, well-meaning, struggling, young Czech. If you want to spend your time name-calling Ribeiro (how many years after he's left the team?), go for it, he was a douche bag. But Plekanec doesn't deserve that. At least limit your criticisms to his performance and not the person. It's no worse than the "Bob Gainey is an Idiot" thread.

Hi guys

My first post here might as well be a positive one. Pleks lacked pluck last year, but he can play marvelous exciting hockey and I share the hope that he will return to his terrific form. GO Plecs GO! :clap:

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Hi guys

My first post here might as well be a positive one. Pleks lacked pluck last year, but he can play marvelous exciting hockey and I share the hope that he will return to his terrific form. GO Plecs GO! :clap:

ok i am the guy who made the first remark about pleks playing like a girl in this topic. I also said I like the guy a lot and it was a joke. Let's get over it and evaluate talent. He has talent but he is bait for trade cause I am not sure he fits this team anymore and he made the sin of filing for arb. This never ends well.

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ok i am the guy who made the first remark about pleks playing like a girl in this topic. I also said I like the guy a lot and it was a joke. Let's get over it and evaluate talent. He has talent but he is bait for trade cause I am not sure he fits this team anymore and he made the sin of filing for arb. This never ends well.

No argument here. I just want to see him dazzle again. :)

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It's really simple with Plek, it's either one of two things :

-Bob's lost confidence in his ability to pivot the 2nd line, in which case Plek WILL be traded.

-Bob has confidence that Plekanec has the ability to pivot the 2nd line, tell Plek that it's "his last chance" (or so)... and Plek finally blossoms.

if it's the first scenario and it's for a guy like Marleau... ok fine. however, I still have that sour taste regarding the Niinimaa taste, so I don't want "over value" for Plek, but I wanna make sure that we don't get screwed another time. So if we trade him, we must make sure that he will NEVER pull a Ribeiro and start playing like a man only once traded and we must make sure that the return is somehow decent. (Niinimaa has to be the worst trade since Patrick Roy's)

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Its a shame about Plex. I do like him but Plex seems to be like Higgins in several regards. Both have a lot of potential but neither seem to be able to reach their potential even when given more responsibility and they both lack consistency. Both tend to have great hot streaks in between prolonged slumps.

Personally I dont really see the need for Plex any more.

Everybody is saying we need another centre, and by my count thats not entirely true. Laps has way more offensive prowess than most of you think. I wouldnt mind seeing Laps replace Plex on the 2nd line and let Chips and Metro fight it out for 3rd and 4th. After all Laps is the Habs largest C and you can tell by looking at Laps that he has been working out during the off seasons to get bigger and stronger. Every year Laps has out done his last seasons best and I think if he is promoted to 2nd C that this wouldnt change. Laps would adapt yet again and flourish in his 3rd different assignment/role in 3 years.

Laps 1st year he was the agitator, 2nd year he was 3rd line C shut down defensive guy. and year 3 he could be the 2nd line C leading the 2nd line of attack. Laps is blazing fast too and he does have a nose for the net, and if you gave him an offensive 1st assignment I am sure you would see other teams routinely tripping, hooking, and holding him. The PP alone that Laps could generate being 2nd C IMO would make him a better choice for 2nd C than Plex.

If Plex does agree to reasonable contract terms I wouldnt ship him out immediately but I would still consider swapping Plex's usual role with Laps.

This is an interesting post. Kudos for thinking outside the box. But while Lapierre did get 15 goals last season, suggesting 20-goal potential, it's his 13 assists (!) that would worry me. This suggests a guy who utterly lacks the on-ice vision and playmaking skills that an offensive C (i.e., a top-6 C) absolutely needs. Beyond that, there is the danger that Lapierre's development would suffer from Montreal's patented Role Confusion Disease - the same thing that afflicted Pleks and Higgins - which occurs when a player who is best-suited to a two-way role starts feeling the pressure to produce offensively and gets away from the defensive foundation that makes them successful, ending up being good at neither. Lapierre, in my opinion, is too young to be asked to play a role for which he isn't naturally suited. Let him continue to develop into one of the game's better third-line C and agitators. Someday he may be called upon to play a more offensive role but I don't think it should be today.

I see three possibilites for the 2nd line C position. One is a Pleks who rediscovers his 2007-08 game. Another is a hybird of Pleks and a young C such as Chipchura or Maxwell - keep Pleks around long enough to assess whether one of those young guys could somehow step in and then deal Pleks for help elsewhere. And the third is trading Pleks as part of a package for another C. The first and last are most likely; but whatever hapens, I don't see Lapierre being successful in that role.

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Plex still stringed three 20 goals seasons. It's his assists that really went down.

Looking at his track record, he should be a lock for 20+ goals. Assists depends on wither or not he can finally find a regular winger to develop chemistry with. Kovalev, Higgins and Kostitsyn werent exactly models of consistency in past seasons.

It's all a matter of confidence for Plekanec. He didnt play on the perimeter last season because he was scared, but because he was overthinking his game. He's not a player scared of physical contact, but he's small and he's not good at it. However, guys who have good work ethics like Plekanec always find a way out of dark places. I think Jacques Martin will love him, and maybe it will work as a fresh start for Plex. At worse, he's still a dangerous penalty killer because of his speed.

I'm thinking that after getting other small speedy guys this summer, our system will be more suited for a guy like Plekanec. I think 20 goals and 30+ assists is realistic. It would help if he could finally have at least one consistent winger who won't suck out all the life out of his line like Kovalev did last season.

I haven't lost an ounce of faith in Plekanec. His intangibles havent changed: great wheels, 2-way smarts, underrated shot and good work ethics. We could do worse than that.

As for Laps gettin thrust into the 2nd C role, I dont see the need. Lapierre is our #1 shutdown C now, a role Plekanec can't really fill because of his lack of size despite 2-way abilities. Lapierre can still rack up points. As much a fan favorite Kosto was, he was also limiting the 3rd line offensively. If Laps get two wingers who have decent offensive upside, he should get his share of points even as a 3rd line C. 20-20 isnt far fetched, which would be more than acceptable for a guy who's main role is checking.

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Plex still stringed three 20 goals seasons. It's his assists that really went down.

Looking at his track record, he should be a lock for 20+ goals. Assists depends on wither or not he can finally find a regular winger to develop chemistry with. Kovalev, Higgins and Kostitsyn werent exactly models of consistency in past seasons.

It's all a matter of confidence for Plekanec. He didnt play on the perimeter last season because he was scared, but because he was overthinking his game. He's not a player scared of physical contact, but he's small and he's not good at it. However, guys who have good work ethics like Plekanec always find a way out of dark places. I think Jacques Martin will love him, and maybe it will work as a fresh start for Plex. At worse, he's still a dangerous penalty killer because of his speed.

I'm thinking that after getting other small speedy guys this summer, our system will be more suited for a guy like Plekanec. I think 20 goals and 30+ assists is realistic. It would help if he could finally have at least one consistent winger who won't suck out all the life out of his line like Kovalev did last season.

I haven't lost an ounce of faith in Plekanec. His intangibles havent changed: great wheels, 2-way smarts, underrated shot and good work ethics. We could do worse than that.

As for Laps gettin thrust into the 2nd C role, I dont see the need. Lapierre is our #1 shutdown C now, a role Plekanec can't really fill because of his lack of size despite 2-way abilities. Lapierre can still rack up points. As much a fan favourite Kosto was, he was also limiting the 3rd line offensively. If Laps get two wingers who have decent offensive upside, he should get his share of points even as a 3rd line C. 20-20 isnt far fetched, which would be more than acceptable for a guy who's main role is checking.

:clap::clap::clap:

Yup, getting rid of plex now when the new coach loves players of his style would seem fairly ridiculous. I hope he sticks around and thrives under Martin's system.

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Bob settles things before then. There hasn't been a habs that has actually gone to arbitration in a LONG time.

Alright, that's good. As we know that arbitration can be damaging to a player/team relationship.

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This is an interesting post. Kudos for thinking outside the box. But while Lapierre did get 15 goals last season, suggesting 20-goal potential, it's his 13 assists (!) that would worry me. This suggests a guy who utterly lacks the on-ice vision and playmaking skills that an offensive C (i.e., a top-6 C) absolutely needs. Beyond that, there is the danger that Lapierre's development would suffer from Montreal's patented Role Confusion Disease - the same thing that afflicted Pleks and Higgins - which occurs when a player who is best-suited to a two-way role starts feeling the pressure to produce offensively and gets away from the defensive foundation that makes them successful, ending up being good at neither. Lapierre, in my opinion, is too young to be asked to play a role for which he isn't naturally suited. Let him continue to develop into one of the game's better third-line C and agitators. Someday he may be called upon to play a more offensive role but I don't think it should be today.

I see three possibilites for the 2nd line C position. One is a Pleks who rediscovers his 2007-08 game. Another is a hybird of Pleks and a young C such as Chipchura or Maxwell - keep Pleks around long enough to assess whether one of those young guys could somehow step in and then deal Pleks for help elsewhere. And the third is trading Pleks as part of a package for another C. The first and last are most likely; but whatever hapens, I don't see Lapierre being successful in that role.

Thx for the compliment. I understand your concern regarding his assists.

Remember one of my primary complaints from the last 2 seasons that I kept bitching aboot last year? The Habs waste so many odd man rushes by racing to the goal line. Its not a race. I swear Laps read my 1 post in one of those games I bitched aboot this because the next time he was in that position in that game what did he do? Exactly what I wanted him to do: He came to a complete stop. :clap: I was so proud of him. :lol:

When you have the puck and go over the blue line at a 100MPH on an odd man rush and you stop the dmen will do 1 of 2 things: skate right by their assignments, or come to complete stop. Either of these things is highly beneficial for the offensive team because the other teams dmen will either now be out of position to check the players they are on. or be caught flat footed and your wingers are still going at full speed, generally right around them with ease.

Believe me when I say that Laps has completely figured this out. The only reason why Laps didnt have more assists was because of some of the wingers he played with who werent smart enough to know what to do when Laps stops abruptly. Kosto a bunch of times would stop too, and thats the last thing the winger should do when his C stops on the rush. Laps would have way better and more offensively minded/gifted guys on his wings if he was 2nd line C.

Watch next year and specifically watch the new Habs forwards, I bet all the new 1st and 2nd line forwards understand this. The race is to get the puck over their blue line, not get the puck to their goal line. i.e. watch Gomez race over blue line, then actually stop or slow down and stay in the high slot while his wingers + possibly 1 dmen keep racing in.

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Plex still stringed three 20 goals seasons. It's his assists that really went down.

Looking at his track record, he should be a lock for 20+ goals. Assists depends on wither or not he can finally find a regular winger to develop chemistry with. Kovalev, Higgins and Kostitsyn werent exactly models of consistency in past seasons.

It's all a matter of confidence for Plekanec. He didnt play on the perimeter last season because he was scared, but because he was overthinking his game. He's not a player scared of physical contact, but he's small and he's not good at it. However, guys who have good work ethics like Plekanec always find a way out of dark places. I think Jacques Martin will love him, and maybe it will work as a fresh start for Plex. At worse, he's still a dangerous penalty killer because of his speed.

I'm thinking that after getting other small speedy guys this summer, our system will be more suited for a guy like Plekanec. I think 20 goals and 30+ assists is realistic. It would help if he could finally have at least one consistent winger who won't suck out all the life out of his line like Kovalev did last season.

I haven't lost an ounce of faith in Plekanec. His intangibles havent changed: great wheels, 2-way smarts, underrated shot and good work ethics. We could do worse than that.

As for Laps gettin thrust into the 2nd C role, I dont see the need. Lapierre is our #1 shutdown C now, a role Plekanec can't really fill because of his lack of size despite 2-way abilities. Lapierre can still rack up points. As much a fan favourite Kosto was, he was also limiting the 3rd line offensively. If Laps get two wingers who have decent offensive upside, he should get his share of points even as a 3rd line C. 20-20 isnt far fetched, which would be more than acceptable for a guy who's main role is checking.

I would love to see him return to his excellent form. Interesting posts on Laps too.

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all plek has to do is score in the first couple of games.he seems to generate alot of chances and he needs to finish better. plek had numerous chances last year and is always a threat short handed.as far as marleau goes, shows up during the regular season.

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Awesome, I sure hope so!!!

plus I think the other two dwarfs; Gionta and Gomez skating straight to the net will HOPEFULLY make him realize what playing the game is all about...

oooo Scary thought hopefully the other Dwarfs dont imitate what Plek was doing!

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well he might be going to San Jose.... which by the looks of things (cheechoo) might not bring us a Cman in return

If Plek ships out? who else is potentially mutable to the centre position and not hurt us in the process (meaning this player is much better to the team as a wingman?

1:Gomez

2:(Camm? Gionta? Kostitsins?....Laraque??? lol)

3:Lapierre

4:Metropolit

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well he might be going to San Jose.... which by the looks of things (cheechoo) might not bring us a Cman in return

If Plek ships out? who else is potentially mutable to the centre position and not hurt us in the process (meaning this player is much better to the team as a wingman?

1:Gomez

2:(Camm? Gionta? Kostitsins?....Laraque??? lol)

3:Lapierre

4:Metropolit

Cammalleri has played as a C in the past and is actually one of the top faceoff guys in the NHL. Size is a concern, but you could do worse.

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(CoRvInA @ Jul 31 2009, 04:23 PM) *

well he might be going to San Jose.... which by the looks of things (cheechoo) might not bring us a Cman in return

If Plek ships out? who else is potentially mutable to the centre position and not hurt us in the process (meaning this player is much better to the team as a wingman?

1:Gomez

2:(Camm? Gionta? Kostitsins?....Laraque??? lol)

3:Lapierre

4:Metropolit

Cammalleri has played as a C in the past and is actually one of the top faceoff guys in the NHL. Size is a concern, but you could do worse.

Really? for Cheechoo? That would be nice. But would Bob try to resign him during the season before he's a UFA next July? :lol:

All I can say is thank God Higgins is gone. I could never understand why they played Higgs at C. He totally sucked at it and couldnt even hit unobstructed open nets when he was directly in front of the net. I'm not sure if the Habs ever won a game when Higgs was playing C.

Yanic Perreault was a fairly small guy and he was 1 of the best faceoff guys for a long time.

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All I can say is thank God Higgins is gone. I could never understand why they played Higgs at C. He totally sucked at it and couldnt even hit unobstructed open nets when he was directly in front of the net. I'm not sure if the Habs ever won a game when Higgs was playing C.

I believe Higgins was a C but was shifted to the wing in the AHL? (Not 100% on that.) When Montreal did play him at C (which was rare and only because of many injuries), he fully admitted to being out of sync with it.

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Cammalleri has played as a C in the past and is actually one of the top faceoff guys in the NHL. Size is a concern, but you could do worse.

Really? for Cheechoo? That would be nice. But would Bob try to resign him during the season before he's a UFA next July? :lol:

All I can say is thank God Higgins is gone. I could never understand why they played Higgs at C. He totally sucked at it and couldnt even hit unobstructed open nets when he was directly in front of the net. I'm not sure if the Habs ever won a game when Higgs was playing C.

Yanic Perreault was a fairly small guy and he was 1 of the best faceoff guys for a long time.

ya Yanic was good... i remember hearing there was a something fishy about his technique.... maybe worth another thread

still if we have nobody else (if Plek goes) other than Camm.... (not even in hamilton hey? a second line centre?) and we cannot land another Cman (marleau, Ribeiro HA!!) then it makes sense that Gainey is searching for a winger to replace Camm's wing position.... Cheechoo, Frolov etc...

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ya Yanic was good... i remember hearing there was a something fishy about his technique.... maybe worth another thread

still if we have nobody else (if Plek goes) other than Camm.... (not even in hamilton hey? a second line centre?) and we cannot land another Cman (marleau, Ribeiro HA!!) then it makes sense that Gainey is searching for a winger to replace Camm's wing position.... Cheechoo, Frolov etc...

Ya, exactly. If Cammy is that good at faceoffs did Bob really get Gomez for 1C? ^_^

If Gomez is the 2C then way to go Bob!! :clap:

You are right there was something kinda fishy aboot his technique and I think there was a new rule made but he was still really good, he didnt win all his faceoffs using the same trick. I think it had something to do with him blocking the other guys stick from the puck and then he would kick the puck away. Isnt there a fairly new rule aboot kicking the puck in a faceoff?

Yanic also got down really low so I think it gave him more leverage and made him slightly faster (every fraction of a second makes a big difference), most centers are fairly tall so he was just closer to the puck to begin with when it gets dropped. :lol:

I still say Bob should hire Yanic Perreault, he would be a great coach to teach the younger Habs C how to take faceoffs.

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