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Next season for the Habs


BrenDittero
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Some possible additions to the bottom six forwards:

Handzus, Ponikarovsky, Kobasew, Brunette, Madden, Frolov, Prospal, White, Zherdev, Vrbata, Belanger, Higgins.

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I'm glad you're done because your logic is faulty. Wiz was an impending UFA (i.e., a rental). Those guys generally don't command full market value. Also the Islanders are not exactly masters of the brilliant deal. As for his +/- he was a plus player with us (i.e., on a good team). Anyway, what you think is irrelevant. Wiz is a top-4 d-man and will rightly get paid like one. The end.

ya know this is a discussion and we can disagree but you are getting to the point of being rude. I have not been ignorant or rude to you and you have no reason to be with me. i do not believe we should sign wiz for 5 mill and that is what it will cost. He is no more a top 4 defence man that souray and you defended him as I recall. so balls to the wall lets just spend money. you must be a big fan of Glen Sather In case u dont know that is how we got Gomez at such a discounted price.

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Some possible additions to the bottom six forwards:

Handzus, Ponikarovsky, Kobasew, Brunette, Madden, Frolov, Prospal, White, Zherdev, Vrbata, Belanger, Higgins.

That's a scary list for the wrong reasons. The guys I've italicized I don't expect to play next year in the NHL due to age (Madden), inconsistency (Zherdev, Kobasew though someone may take a flyer on these 2), or outright suckiness (Frolov, Ponikarovsky, the latter having had just 3 more goals than Pyatt in the same number of games). There are a couple decent pieces on that list though, I'd like Handzus myself but I think he'll want to be paid more than a #3 C based on the contract he is finishing.

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That's a scary list for the wrong reasons. The guys I've italicized I don't expect to play next year in the NHL due to age (Madden), inconsistency (Zherdev, Kobasew though someone may take a flyer on these 2), or outright suckiness (Frolov, Ponikarovsky, the latter having had just 3 more goals than Pyatt in the same number of games). There are a couple decent pieces on that list though, I'd like Handzus myself but I think he'll want to be paid more than a #3 C based on the contract he is finishing.

I tend to agree with your assessment, Brian. I think Higgins, Vrbata and Belanger would be worth looking at.

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That's a scary list for the wrong reasons. The guys I've italicized I don't expect to play next year in the NHL due to age (Madden), inconsistency (Zherdev, Kobasew though someone may take a flyer on these 2), or outright suckiness (Frolov, Ponikarovsky, the latter having had just 3 more goals than Pyatt in the same number of games). There are a couple decent pieces on that list though, I'd like Handzus myself but I think he'll want to be paid more than a #3 C based on the contract he is finishing.

thank you Brian at least the conversation is going in the right direction, it may not have been your intention but hey it is positive.

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and you know we could actually trade somebody. I know it is hard to believe but this is the nhk nhg nhl I am so dumm I just cant get that right.

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I've wanted Handzus on the Habs since about 2003. But I don't see how he'd fit at this point.

I actually thought we should've claimed Zherdev when he was available. I don't know why coaches hate him, he seems to do quite well despite being constantly in doghouses.

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That's a scary list for the wrong reasons. The guys I've italicized I don't expect to play next year in the NHL due to age (Madden), inconsistency (Zherdev, Kobasew though someone may take a flyer on these 2), or outright suckiness (Frolov, Ponikarovsky, the latter having had just 3 more goals than Pyatt in the same number of games). There are a couple decent pieces on that list though, I'd like Handzus myself but I think he'll want to be paid more than a #3 C based on the contract he is finishing.

I'm talking Halpern or Pouliot replacements.

If you expect them to be third line players, Frolov, Ponikarovsky, Kobasew and Zherdev really aren't that bad.

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I tend to agree with your assessment, Brian. I think Higgins, Vrbata and Belanger would be worth looking at.

Of those 3, Higgins would likely be the most viable. For starters, the Habs were quite interested in him up until the deadline (he got hurt just before then). He finally seems to embrace the fact he's not going to be a top-6 guy but still can help as a good 3rd liner with strong two-way play. Belanger is linked to the Habs every free agency by RDS and every time we find out after that the Habs weren't interested. That, coupled with the sense of entitlement that leads him to overprice himself every time he hits the market (he was seeking 2nd line C money last offseason which is why he sat so long) suggests they may look elsewhere. Vrbata's intriguing but I'd shy away from him after seeing what happened to him the last time he hit free agency, where he played so 'well' that he was assigned to the Czech league 18 games into his first season. It was only when Phoenix took him back that he woke up.

I'm talking Halpern or Pouliot replacements.

If you expect them to be third line players, Frolov, Ponikarovsky, Kobasew and Zherdev really aren't that bad.

But are those guys (not so much Kobasew, I think he's the exception here) willing to take 3rd line money? Zherdev will likely bolt back to Russia as will Frolov who showed with the Rangers he can't play defence, limiting his 3rd line ability. Ponikarovsky wound up playing in the bottom 6 for most of the year and didn't produce. If he waits long enough in free agency, I think someone will give him a contract if he's willing to settle for a 6-figure salary. Would I take a flyer at a Halpern-type salary? Perhaps, but I think I'd prefer Halpern at that type of money.

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Some possible additions to the bottom six forwards:

Handzus, Ponikarovsky, Kobasew, Brunette, Madden, Frolov, Prospal, White, Zherdev, Vrbata, Belanger, Higgins.

I support this signing. Let Halpern go, and gimme a true shut down guy with a great faceoff. Truly free Plek from all of the defensive duty. Although Halpern did do a pretty good job this year.

Edit... Okay looking at Madden's age, I guess I am the one getting old too. I did not watch him last year, but I know how great he was with New Jersey as a shut down forward. Higgins is the next best guy on that list.

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Just for the record, here were the faceoff numbers for Halpern/Madden last year:

Madden: 504/988, 51.0%

Halpern: 338/594, 56.9%

Madden was 53% the year before, Halpern 52% with a much smaller sample size. I'm not sure there's a big difference in terms of upgrading faceoffs between these 2.

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Impressive. I had no idea his play had regressed so much. Madden has always struck

Me as a premier shut down guy, but maybe the one we have is better. I always remember his blistering speed and efficiency at shutting down team's top lines. His plus minus is skewed because of the minutes he draws against top lines 5 on 5. Everyone gets old I guess. I am still a huge believer In shut down lines. I am willing to bet that Kessler will not look as good next series when he has to play against Marleau, Thorton, Heatly all the time. You give 15 of those defensive minutes to Malhotra, and watch Kessler go to work.'Same thing that happened to Plek last playoff. Regardless of who is signed, I want to see a shutdown line next year.

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But are those guys (not so much Kobasew, I think he's the exception here) willing to take 3rd line money? Zherdev will likely bolt back to Russia as will Frolov who showed with the Rangers he can't play defence, limiting his 3rd line ability. Ponikarovsky wound up playing in the bottom 6 for most of the year and didn't produce. If he waits long enough in free agency, I think someone will give him a contract if he's willing to settle for a 6-figure salary. Would I take a flyer at a Halpern-type salary? Perhaps, but I think I'd prefer Halpern at that type of money.

Their '10-'11 salaries:

Zherdev - 2M

Frolov - 3M

Kobasew - 2.33M

Ponikarovsky - 3.2M

All of them are due to pay cuts after disappointing seasons. That's borderline bottom six money for borderline bottom six players. (Borderline in that they can play in the top six when there are injuries.)

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Their '10-'11 salaries:

Zherdev - 2M

Frolov - 3M

Kobasew - 2.33M

Ponikarovsky - 3.2M

All of them are due to pay cuts after disappointing seasons. That's borderline bottom six money for borderline bottom six players. (Borderline in that they can play in the top six when there are injuries.)

I agree, they're all due pay cuts. However, if you're Frolov or Zherdev, do you sign for ~1 million in the NHL or go to Russia? Zherdev already has while Frolov is widely believed to do so. More money and they get to play at home. As I noted earlier, Kobasew's the exception from this list, he'll accept a cheaper deal from someone. Ponikarovsky's the interesting case, he barely got a contract from a desperate LA team last offseason and then played even worse. Yes, that should lower his asking price but if the offers are where they should be (about $1 million), I think he too will play overseas. That's why I question if signing them is realistic (notwithstanding Kobasew), I think the only way to get them is to overpay based on what they were worth before, not are worth now.

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I agree, they're all due pay cuts. However, if you're Frolov or Zherdev, do you sign for ~1 million in the NHL or go to Russia? Zherdev already has while Frolov is widely believed to do so. More money and they get to play at home. As I noted earlier, Kobasew's the exception from this list, he'll accept a cheaper deal from someone. Ponikarovsky's the interesting case, he barely got a contract from a desperate LA team last offseason and then played even worse. Yes, that should lower his asking price but if the offers are where they should be (about $1 million), I think he too will play overseas. That's why I question if signing them is realistic (notwithstanding Kobasew), I think the only way to get them is to overpay based on what they were worth before, not are worth now.

I'd be willing to pay Frolov more than 1 mill. He's regressed for four straight years but if we accept him as a bottom six player and alter our expectations, I think we'd like him more than Pouliot.

Anyway, I checked the upcoming UFA list on capgeek and there seems to be no shortage of 40-50 point forwards this offseason so these are far from the only options.

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I'd be willing to pay Frolov more than 1 mill. He's regressed for four straight years but if we accept him as a bottom six player and alter our expectations, I think we'd like him more than Pouliot.

Anyway, I checked the upcoming UFA list on capgeek and there seems to be no shortage of 40-50 point forwards this offseason so these are far from the only options.

Hell, to me it would be a no brainer to take a flyer on Frolov, if we could sign him for under $1.5M and then eat Gomez's salary.

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Price and Subban will be due for massive raises the following year. I would be. carefull tying up that cash on the back end. I know what you are saying though. You need 4 true top four defensemen.

I hope the habs sign both to 10-14 year deals at a reduced rate, rather then just the usual habs 2-5 year deals. Those are two guys I want to see in a Habs uniform for a LONG time!

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If the Habs tie up money in the back end, it would have the virtue of FORCING them to boot out Gomez in order to be able to lock up Price and Subban when the time comes. That's how the Phillys, Bostons, and Chicagos of the world do things. And that's what we should do. Like I keep saying: sign the guys you want, deal with future cap implications when that future arrives. If Gomer has a good year next year, then you should be able to trade him to a low-salary club looking for a boost. If he has a bad year, then you cannot justify keeping him around anyway.

I agree, though, PK and Price should absolutely be locked up loooong term. None of this 3-year-deal stuff.

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Cammalleri - Plekanec - Scottie Upshall or Frolov

Pacioretty-Gomez - Gionta

Eller-Desharnais- Pouliot

White-Pyatt-Boll

Moen -MacIntyre

Gill - Subban

Bieksa-Weber

Gorges-Wisniewski

Spacek

I think we sign upshall or frolov

we trade Kostitsyn to Columbus for boll and a 2nd pick

we sign bieksa.

we sign MacIntyre.

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I'm not sure why you like MacIntyre so much. He has been waived several times over the last few years and can't play a lick of hockey. He'd never see the ice for the Habs, he makes Laraque look like a well-rounded player. Yes, he can fight, but little else. He'll get a two-way deal from someone to play a 4th line minor league role, I'd be shocked if he got anything more.

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