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2021 Habs Free Agents: Who goes? Who stays? What's the price?


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4 hours ago, Prime Minister Koivu said:


Lehkonen is a tough case because as you point out he is a bottom 6 with limited offence and there are many of those around. He is such a relentless beast and is so good at his role. 
 

You are right about the cap I think. I was including Lehkonen’s salary in my quick calculation so you are roughly 2 million under 

I think with a flat cap we should be able to keep Lekhonan. The guy works his ass off, and you need that from a checking line. He also showed he can score the odd big goal at times.

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2 hours ago, Commandant said:

You can't do bonuses with Gustafsson, he is not 35+ and doesn't qualify for the injury rules. 

 

also playing him with Weber, where you will be asking him to play a minimum of 18 minutes a night?  Thats a disastrous decision.

I agree. A guy who was playing a sheltered 5-6 min a game, is not going to even be capable of playing  12-15 min. The guy was a not even able to crack a crappy Philly team.

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3 hours ago, Commandant said:

You can't do bonuses with Gustafsson, he is not 35+ and doesn't qualify for the injury rules. 

 

also playing him with Weber, where you will be asking him to play a minimum of 18 minutes a night?  Thats a disastrous decision.

I agree with you in the need, but this is the best fit I can find from available options.

 

who do you have in mind ?

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4 hours ago, alfredoh2009 said:

I know it sounds crazy based on recent history and how his play was erratic sometimes in the playoffs. but IMHO, he is one the cheapest point producing LD UFAs in the market and he will be sought after.

If Mike Reilly (BOS) was making $1.5M and Gustafsson was making $3M, I put Gustafsson's new contract in between those numbers with the idea of letting him play with Weber for the season.

 

There are not that many other LDs with similar skill set on the UFA market

 

Gustafsson got 3 million from Philly because they were giving him a chance to show he could be the 60 point guy he was 2 years ago and not the mediocre player he was last year.  Neither turned out to be the case and in fact he continued to regress. After the last two years, I would be surprised if anyone in the league sees him as more than a 7th D.

 

In your scenario of pairing him with Weber, are you making that the 3rd pairing in order to limit Weber's ice time during the season to keep him fresher for the playoffs? There's no way they'd give him top 4 minutes. And if it is 3rd pairing, what happens in the playoffs when you want Weber playing top 4 minutes?

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8 minutes ago, Fanpuck33 said:

 

Gustafsson got 3 million from Philly because they were giving him a chance to show he could be the 60 point guy he was 2 years ago and not the mediocre player he was last year.  Neither turned out to be the case and in fact he continued to regress. After the last two years, I would be surprised if anyone in the league sees him as more than a 7th D.

 

In your scenario of pairing him with Weber, are you making that the 3rd pairing in order to limit Weber's ice time during the season to keep him fresher for the playoffs? There's no way they'd give him top 4 minutes. And if it is 3rd pairing, what happens in the playoffs when you want Weber playing top 4 minutes?

That would be a $10m bottom pairing. 

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23 minutes ago, alfredoh2009 said:

I agree with you in the need, but this is the best fit I can find from available options.

 

who do you have in mind ?

 

I wait for the expansion draft to settle and then look at a trade, rather than spending money on Gustafsson.

I also think we should grab a RHD instead of a Lefty.  We have Edmundson, Chiarot, Romanov, Kulak who can all play left.  Thats four guys proven to be NHL regulars. In a pinch, with injuries, we still have Xavier Ouellet as our 5th LHD. 

On the right we have Weber, Petry and then are hoping Fleury can come in.   

 

I go for a RHD that over the 82 game season can take some minutes away from Weber.

Edmundson - Petry

Romanov - Weber

Chiarot - new defenceman

 

82 games is different than playoffs, you can't just go with 4 D.  Its too many games and too much stress to do that.  With these pairs you can have Petry and Weber play fewer minutes and save them for playoffs. 

 

Your UFA options aren't great, Hamilton (too expensive unless Weber is leaving).  Barrie (probably still too expensive), and then not a lot in terms of puck movers.

 

The player who I fear that we will sign that fits the criteria though is Tony DeAngelo is soon to be bought out by the Rangers. I'd rather stay away but we were rumoured to want him at the deadline. 

 

Other than that, I'd go for a trade. 

 

What would Rasmus Andersson cost?

Brett Pesce?

Damon Severson?

Mathew Dumba?

 

I'd be picking up the phone and seeing the prices on those guys. 

 

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2 hours ago, hab29RETIRED said:

There is no way if want Gustafson, let alone having him paired with Weber.  We NEED a better puck mover, who is actually capable of playing defence. 

Assuming we can find one, that will cost substantially more than Gustafsson (who is very unlikely to get over $2M anywhere).

 

But we do need someone like him, it really does make a big difference to the PP.

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Lehks plays a very important role, and was very good in playoffs again this year as he has been in the past.  There have been reports that he garnered a lot of interest from other teams who saw the attention to details and overall strong play. That could mean it is a good time to move him for an asset at high value or, there is a case to be made to keep him assuming he takes a team friendly deal. He is apparently a team oriented guy, seems to be comfortable with Habs.

 

The problem with him, Danault, Armia, Byron, etc on the same roster is that you’ve assembled a team that is designed to “not make mistakes” instead of driving the play. Personally, I think that mentality has limited our chances at success. Just like in combat sports, the edge usually goes to the attacker, even if the defender is excellent at stifling those attacks.   Too many “responsible, two way” forwards on one team that is built around goaltending and defensive d men makes for a counter-punch offense that cannot be relied upon. Need more attack mentality, when Habs did that they were a force.  Suzuki is the only top 6 centre and team is putting a lot of pressure and focus on him.

KK will not be a sufficient 2C in near future, nor is Danault, Evans, Poehling.

Suzuki will be identified and heavily targeted if he is the only offensive centremam next year, best for him would be to be 2C for another year behind a true #1C.  Our C depth has 1 number one C, then a pile of 3/4 line centremen.

 

 

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11 hours ago, Commandant said:

 

 

The player who I fear that we will sign that fits the criteria though is Tony DeAngelo is soon to be bought out by the Rangers. I'd rather stay away but we were rumoured to want him at the deadline. 

 

Other than that, I'd go for a trade. 

 

What would Rasmus Andersson cost?

Brett Pesce?

Damon Severson?

Mathew Dumba?

 

I'd be picking up the phone and seeing the prices on those guys. 

 

 

It would make sense to buy low on DeAngelo, those other guys would cost serious assets. 

 

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13 hours ago, Commandant said:

 

I wait for the expansion draft to settle and then look at a trade, rather than spending money on Gustafsson.

I also think we should grab a RHD instead of a Lefty.  We have Edmundson, Chiarot, Romanov, Kulak who can all play left.  Thats four guys proven to be NHL regulars. In a pinch, with injuries, we still have Xavier Ouellet as our 5th LHD. 

On the right we have Weber, Petry and then are hoping Fleury can come in.   

 

I go for a RHD that over the 82 game season can take some minutes away from Weber.

Edmundson - Petry

Romanov - Weber

Chiarot - new defenceman

 

82 games is different than playoffs, you can't just go with 4 D.  Its too many games and too much stress to do that.  With these pairs you can have Petry and Weber play fewer minutes and save them for playoffs. 

 

Your UFA options aren't great, Hamilton (too expensive unless Weber is leaving).  Barrie (probably still too expensive), and then not a lot in terms of puck movers.

 

The player who I fear that we will sign that fits the criteria though is Tony DeAngelo is soon to be bought out by the Rangers. I'd rather stay away but we were rumoured to want him at the deadline. 

 

Other than that, I'd go for a trade. 

 

What would Rasmus Andersson cost?

Brett Pesce?

Damon Severson?

Mathew Dumba?

 

I'd be picking up the phone and seeing the prices on those guys. 

 

Dumba is the guy I’d be targeting. As far as D’Angelo, didn’t he reportedly block a deadline deal to us at the deadline? If he did - I avant- see why he’s sign with us now - which is a good thing!

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1 minute ago, hab29RETIRED said:

Dumba is the guy I’d be targeting. As far as D’Angelo, didn’t he reportedly block a deadline deal to us at the deadline? If he did - I avant- see why he’s sign with us now - which is a good thing!

 

He refused to terminate his contract to then sign with the Habs.  It wasnt a trade he blocked.

 

He is forcing the rangers to buy him out (and getting 1/3 of his money) and then signing.

 

The Habs offered to give him a contract equivalent to the 1/3 he would get on a buyout 

 

But heres the issue

 

1) after his buyout he gets the 1/3 from the rangers plus he is free to sign a new contract.  The habs offer didnt give him anything extra.  So now he has the chance to make more (and even if he signs at league minimum or in the KHL hes still made more than the habs offered).

 

2) the habs could later buy out their own contract at 1/3 the value and hed end up with less money. There is no legal protection for him here.

 

 

So I don't think he rejected the habs so much as he rejected making less money.

 

When hes a free agent in a few days (buyout will likely be after the exp draft) these things no longer apply and if there is still interest then the Habs could bid on him, and hes no longet losing money by coming to montreal.

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I can see why MB is interested in D’Angelo. Not only does he have legit top-4 offensive talent, not only is he a “buy low” option, but at 25 he is entering a phase of life where - sometimes - young punks mature a bit. His series of dramas may be putting him in the same position as Zach Kassian, who finally got serious after Montreal cut him loose. With the Habs not wanting to surrender assets and in need of a top-4 D, and the UFA talent pool thin, that might be a gamble worth taking. 

 

The trouble is, he has a history of dirty hits - I really loathe that crap - has never been defensively reliable, and rebels against his coaches whenever they do anything he doesn’t like. I don’t know about “behavioural issues” beyond that, but that trio of flaws will be more than enough for DD to manage. 

 

If we could get him on a shorter-term deal, it’s maybe not completely crazy. 

 

 

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4 minutes ago, The Chicoutimi Cucumber said:

I can see why MB is interested in D’Angelo. Not only does he have legit top-4 offensive talent, not only is he a “buy low” option, but at 25 he is entering a phase of life where - sometimes - young punks mature a bit. His series of dramas may be putting him in the same position as Zach Kassian, who finally got serious after Montreal cut him loose. With the Habs not wanting to surrender assets and in need of a top-4 D, and the UFA talent pool thin, that might be a gamble worth taking. 

 

The trouble is, he has a history of dirty hits - I really loathe that crap - has never been defensively reliable, and rebels against his coaches whenever they do anything he doesn’t like. I don’t know about “behavioural issues” beyond that, but that trio of flaws will be more than enough for DD to manage. 

 

If we could get him on a shorter-term deal, it’s maybe not completely crazy. 

 

 

 

He got into a fights with teammates, including his own goalie, when he blames them for mistakes that lead to goals against. (ie after he made a giveaway, the goalie let the goal in and he got into a fight with him about it).

 

He also has a history of homophobic slurs including to his own teammates in junior. 

 

His public statements, including his short lived podcast, showed that he holds many of the most abhorrent views of the most far-right trump supporters. Not just typical conservative views, but like the things from the real fringe and most problematic parts of the party. 

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14 minutes ago, Commandant said:

 

He got into a fights with teammates, including his own goalie, when he blames them for mistakes that lead to goals against. (ie after he made a giveaway, the goalie let the goal in and he got into a fight with him about it).

 

He also has a history of homophobic slurs including to his own teammates in junior. 

 

His public statements, including his short lived podcast, showed that he holds many of the most abhorrent views of the most far-right trump supporters. Not just typical conservative views, but like the things from the real fringe and most problematic parts of the party. 

 

The entire GOP base is now "most problematic" but never mind that. I didn't know these other bits - clearly a guy with these attitudes will be a terrible fit in Montreal, a diverse and groovy city. Surprising that MB is sniffing around, then; I wonder if he figures Weber/Price can keep him in line.

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The reality is that the majority of NHL players hold conservative views.  Hockey players typically come from affluent families.  They also make tons of money.

 

Lower taxes on the rich is a hell of a thing when you are rich.

 

Obviously not all nhlers... but its more prevalent to be conservative in the NHL than in regular society.  Most just keep their mouths shut.

 

Poehling and family are a MAGA hat wearing family.  But they are the ones who show views.  Most players who feel the same are quiet about it.

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@hockeyrealist , that is a good point on Lehkonen. I had proposed trading him a couple of years ago, but was told that I viewed his value too high.

He would be great on any top heavy team like the Oilers or Pittsburgh but not on the Habs which need a top-4 point producing D more than a checking winger.

 

I do not agree on your take on Kotkaniemi, he is developing just fine. willbe a really good 2C, maybe this year or next. I agree that it may take him one more season to reach that level but I am more confident than you that he gets there soonner than later.

 

I would resign (and even overpay a bit) for Danault just so that Suzuki has the breathing room to develop into the Habs 1C. Sheltering Suzuki from some defensive assignments and PK duties may be sufficient.

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9 minutes ago, Commandant said:

The reality is that the majority of NHL players hold conservative views.  Hockey players typically come from affluent families.  They also make tons of money.

 

Lower taxes on the rich is a hell of a thing when you are rich.

 

Obviously not all nhlers... but its more prevalent to be conservative in the NHL than in regular society.  Most just keep their mouths shut.

 

Poehling and family are a MAGA hat wearing family.  But they are the ones who show views.  Most players who feel the same are quiet about it.

 

Well, I can see guys being "conservative" in the Stephen Harper sense: keep my taxes low, let me make as much money as I can, don't bother me with your social causes. NHL players are a sort of hypertrophied example of "aspirational" classes whose main goal is to make as much money and have as much personal worldly success as possible. As ultra-competitors, they may be less inclined to take a compassionate view of the less privileged. That all makes sense.

 

MAGA, though, is an authoritarian and basically white-supremacist movement currently gutting what is left of American democracy. That's another level - not, in fact, conservatism proper at all, but rather a radical attack on liberal-democratic institutions. I cling to the hope that most NHLers, and certainly most Canadian players, know better than to support that garbage. But perhaps this is a vain hope.

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2 hours ago, The Chicoutimi Cucumber said:

Well, I can see guys being "conservative" in the Stephen Harper sense: keep my taxes low, let me make as much money as I can, don't bother me with your social causes. NHL players are a sort of hypertrophied example of "aspirational" classes whose main goal is to make as much money and have as much personal worldly success as possible. As ultra-competitors, they may be less inclined to take a compassionate view of the less privileged. That all makes sense.

 

MAGA, though, is an authoritarian and basically white-supremacist movement currently gutting what is left of American democracy. That's another level - not, in fact, conservatism proper at all, but rather a radical attack on liberal-democratic institutions. I cling to the hope that most NHLers, and certainly most Canadian players, know better than to support that garbage. But perhaps this is a vain hope.

The binary us/them split in US federal politics has left moderate conservatives tied to a Republican Party with which they are in many ways not philosophically in-tune ... but there are undoubtedly NHLers who are full blown Trumpians ... they are no different than the 1st of the population ... similarly "Democratic" NHLers are also spread across the spectrum of their party.

 

But while I personally do not support Trump or the changes to voter laws currently being pursued, as long as players not only play well on the ice but also "play well with others" in the organization I don't care about their political beliefs. 

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Just now, GHT120 said:

 

But as long as players not only play well on the ice but also "play well with others" in the organization I don't care about their political beliefs. 

This. 

 

I like to keep sports and politics separate.  Love how famous folks opinions seem to matter when they jump on soap boxes. Whatever it happens to be. " That guy plays a really nice guy on TV, therefore his commentary on the migratory habits of hummingbirds must be true."

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Oh i dont care what they believe. 

 

In TDA's case his homophobia has caused issues with teammates, and he's had other fights with members of the team. Its also been rumoured, though not proven that he mistreated a black rookie in K'Andre Miller.

 

So for 99% of NHL players i don't care.  For TDA I don't want him. 

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1 minute ago, BCHabnut said:

This. 

 

I like to keep sports and politics separate.  Love how famous folks opinions seem to matter when they jump on soap boxes. Whatever it happens to be. " That guy plays a really nice guy on TV, therefore his commentary on the migratory habits of hummingbirds must be true."

Well ... the demise of AM radio ***IS*** having negative impact on their migration.
😀

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6 minutes ago, Commandant said:

Oh i dont care what they believe. 

 

In TDA's case his homophobia has caused issues with teammates, and he's had other fights with members of the team. Its also been rumoured, though not proven that he mistreated a black rookie in K'Andre Miller.

 

So for 99% of NHL players i don't care.  For TDA I don't want him. 

This is a behavior issue for sure. No thank you.

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Just now, Commandant said:

Oh i dont care what they believe. 

 

In TDA's case his homophobia has caused issues with teammates, and he's had other fights with members of the team. Its also been rumoured, though not proven that he mistreated a black rookie in K'Andre Miller.

 

So for 99% of NHL players i don't care.  For TDA I don't want him. 

It is a VERY valid concern ... one that MB et al would have to seriously explore before offering a contract ... as was said above, it is possible that D’Angelo has matured ... be it in his beliefs or at very least how/when/if he expresses them ... there are undoubtedly other NHL players who share his beliefs, but are smart enough to know what to say and when to say it ... my preference is to stay away from him ... but understand how, if he has gotten his act together, he could be an on-ice asset.

 

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1 hour ago, Commandant said:

Oh i dont care what they believe. 

 

In TDA's case his homophobia has caused issues with teammates, and he's had other fights with members of the team. Its also been rumoured, though not proven that he mistreated a black rookie in K'Andre Miller.

 

So for 99% of NHL players i don't care.  For TDA I don't want him. 

Also mistreatment of European teammates. 

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10 hours ago, Commandant said:

 

He refused to terminate his contract to then sign with the Habs.  It wasnt a trade he blocked.

 

He is forcing the rangers to buy him out (and getting 1/3 of his money) and then signing.

 

The Habs offered to give him a contract equivalent to the 1/3 he would get on a buyout 

 

But heres the issue

 

1) after his buyout he gets the 1/3 from the rangers plus he is free to sign a new contract.  The habs offer didnt give him anything extra.  So now he has the chance to make more (and even if he signs at league minimum or in the KHL hes still made more than the habs offered).

 

2) the habs could later buy out their own contract at 1/3 the value and hed end up with less money. There is no legal protection for him here.

 

 

So I don't think he rejected the habs so much as he rejected making less money.

 

When hes a free agent in a few days (buyout will likely be after the exp draft) these things no longer apply and if there is still interest then the Habs could bid on him, and hes no longet losing money by coming to montreal.

Thanks. I didn’t realize there was a buyout involved - thought it was just a trade he blocked.

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