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Who would be your top choice in Montreal for our GM?


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6 minutes ago, tomh009 said:

Bergevin has generally done very well in trading, the Sergachev-Drouin trade aside (and even that one might have been expected to be closer). Drafting, once you consider draft positions, is roughly league average. Yong player development has been the biggest weakness in my view.

 

We don't have many players on the roster that we drafted, but that is in large part due to the active trading.

Yeah active trading do to bad player development 

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1 hour ago, TurdBurglar said:

Am I the only one who doesn’t think MB is a bad GM?  He’s the best GM the team has had in the last 25 years.  His worse move was Sergachev for Drouin.  Made some really good moves in Petry for a 2nd for example.  Has some huge obstacles in Montreal with taxes and media attention that deters players.  
 

I firmly believe the weak link during his tenure is drafting.  I’m not aware at how much of that is on MB’s shoulders, so I’m refraining on judging him on that front.  I do believe if the drafting was a little better we wouldn’t be having this discussion right now.

 

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19 minutes ago, TurdBurglar said:

I’m afraid I don’t understand what active trading has to do with drafted players on the roster.  Aside from Sergachev, MB hasn’t traded a good prospect without giving them a fair shake.  Let’s be honest, KK is, and may never be, worth $6m a season.

Some people complain that the drafting is no good, based on us not having our own draft picks on the roster. But, the more trading the GM does, the fewer of your own draft picks you will have on the team, on average.

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1 hour ago, TurdBurglar said:

Am I the only one who doesn’t think MB is a bad GM?  He’s the best GM the team has had in the last 25 years.  His worse move was Sergachev for Drouin.  Made some really good moves in Petry for a 2nd for example.  Has some huge obstacles in Montreal with taxes and media attention that deters players.  
 

I firmly believe the weak link during his tenure is drafting.  I’m not aware at how much of that is on MB’s shoulders, so I’m refraining on judging him on that front.  I do believe if the drafting was a little better we wouldn’t be having this discussion right now.

 

I like what Bergevin has done the last 2-3 years (outside the Sergachev trade).  I don't know how much you blame MB for their draft record, he is not a scout but he is the guy who has final say on personnel in the scouting department.  I think their player development has been weak but hopefully improving  (I hope they learned from the terrible decision to keep KK as an 18 year old). 

 

This is a big year for them. Hopefully the decision to be a seller at the trade deadline is an easy one to make. (It's sure looking like it right now). 

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1 hour ago, TurdBurglar said:

Am I the only one who doesn’t think MB is a bad GM?  He’s the best GM the team has had in the last 25 years ... 

 

Hardly a high bar to surpass ... if he has

 

1 hour ago, TurdBurglar said:

... I firmly believe the weak link during his tenure is drafting.  I’m not aware at how much of that is on MB’s shoulders ...

 

At a minimum he is the one who has kept Timmins employed ... and, admittedly with absolutely no proof, I feel like several picks were MB selections or highly influenced by him ... amongst first rounders: Galchenyuk (have to draft #1 centres) ... McCaron (need size and toughness) ... Kotkaniemi (see Galchenyuk) ... Mailloux (if Timmins did that on his own he'd be gone after the uproar ... and he did not seem very committed to the pick when asked to explain it that night)

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The picks have been hashed countless times ... but 2012 was a weak draft year (Yakupov!) and we had a dire organizational situation at C. As we did in 2018, when many people wanted the Habs to pick Zadina -- we did not have Suzuki at that point yet.

 

And those were our only high picks in the past 10 years. Next is Sergachev at 9th, Caufield at 15th, and Guhle at 16th. Everyone else was mid-20s or worse.

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7 minutes ago, tomh009 said:

The picks have been hashed countless times ... but 2012 was a weak draft year (Yakupov!) and we had a dire organizational situation at C. As we did in 2018, when many people wanted the Habs to pick Zadina -- we did not have Suzuki at that point yet.

 

And those were our only high picks in the past 10 years. Next is Sergachev at 9th, Caufield at 15th, and Guhle at 16th. Everyone else was mid-20s or worse.

 

Fate of the last three first-rounders is as yet unknown/unproven.

 

Making a bad pick because it attempts to fill a need is not better than a good pick that adds depth ... Timmins and Bergevin thought/claimed they had drafted two first-line centres ... one clearly wasn't and the other isn't looking like it ... and neither are because of poor development (IMO).

 

And while late first rounders may not usually be franchise players there proved to be some better options ... for example, Theodore over McCaron (even Dickinson or Hartman),  Beauvillier over Juulsen, anyone over Mailloux. 

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You can pretty much choose any NHL team and take a look at their draft record over the last five or ten years, and find lots of better players that they overlooked, in almost every draft year. There is no certainty in the draft, and no scout knows for sure who will be the best player. A late-first round pick has only something like a 65% probability of ever becoming an NHL player. Regardless of who is picking.

 

As an example, Tampa Bay is held up as an excellent drafting team. In 2016, they drafted Brett Howden in 27th -- they could have had Alex DeBrincat.  They took Boris Katchouk in 44th and Talyor Raddysh in 58th when they could have had Samuel Girard (47th) or Adam Fox (66th).

 

Nobody does a perfect job in this. Because evaluating prospects is very, very difficult, and predicting their performance in the NHL is even more difficult.

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3 hours ago, GHT120 said:

 

Fate of the last three first-rounders is as yet unknown/unproven.

 

Making a bad pick because it attempts to fill a need is not better than a good pick that adds depth ... Timmins and Bergevin thought/claimed they had drafted two first-line centres ... one clearly wasn't and the other isn't looking like it ... and neither are because of poor development (IMO).

 

And while late first rounders may not usually be franchise players there proved to be some better options ... for example, Theodore over McCaron (even Dickinson or Hartman),  Beauvillier over Juulsen, anyone over Mailloux. 

I think when it comes to drafting, you’re touching on the issue.  Habs were drafting immediate needs, not best player.  McCaron is a great example of that.  Picked because the Habs needed size, when a few free agents could of addressed that.  
 

When drafting, unless your team is absolutely set in a position, best player should always be drafted.  I would argue that Kotkaniemi was the worse player drafted in the top-10 in 2018.  I do remember being shocked Zadina wasn’t picked.  In reality, Zadina is a winger and the Habs needed a center right then.  

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37 minutes ago, TurdBurglar said:

When drafting, unless your team is absolutely set in a position, best player should always be drafted.  I would argue that Kotkaniemi was the worse player drafted in the top-10 in 2018.  I do remember being shocked Zadina wasn’t picked.  In reality, Zadina is a winger and the Habs needed a center right then.  

There are two schools of thought on that, but I do think the "best player available" school has more support these days. In the case of Kotkaniemi, it wasn't just that the Habs needed a centre for the team right now, but they had no promising #1 centre (which is what they were hoping for from him) prospects in the system. #1 centres are very hard to trade for, or even to sign as UFAs, and they really wanted one for the long term, so I can see the rationale.

 

Now, of course, if they had picked Zadina as BPA, the result might have been even worse. Hindsight is 20/20 so now we know Hughes would have been the ideal pick, but back then none of the top six teams saw that outcome.

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1 hour ago, TurdBurglar said:

...  In reality, Zadina is a winger and the Habs needed a center right then.  

 

51 minutes ago, tomh009 said:

... Now, of course, if they had picked Zadina as BPA, the result might have been even worse ...

They needed a legit 1C, 2C at a minimum ... what they got was, for them, an average at best 3C (even taking account of the playoff goals) and in Carolina seems to be a 3rd line winger (albeit on a much better team than the Habs, but winger none the less) ... and while many fans, and the media, seemed to be pushing Zadina, Timmins might well have taken Tkachuk or Hughes ... we will never know.

 

51 minutes ago, tomh009 said:

There are two schools of thought on that, but I do think the "best player available" school has more support these days. In the case of Kotkaniemi, it wasn't just that the Habs needed a centre for the team right now, but they had no promising #1 centre (which is what they were hoping for from him) prospects in the system. #1 centres are very hard to trade for, or even to sign as UFAs, and they really wanted one for the long term, so I can see the rationale ...

With respect to NHL drafting, or in any other field for that matter, desperation rarely results in the best decision being made ... especially (IMO) with the hindsight of so relatively recently having misjudged Galchenyuk as a 1C 

 

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27 minutes ago, GHT120 said:

With respect to NHL drafting, or in any other field for that matter, desperation rarely results in the best decision being made ... especially (IMO) with the hindsight of so relatively recently having misjudged Galchenyuk as a 1C

I don't think it was desperation. They knew the prospect pipeline had no high-quality wingers, and they decided addressing that was worth more than picking the best player available. In hindsight, it may not have been the right decision (though if they had picked Zadina the outcome might have been worse yet) but I don't see it as desperation.

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7 hours ago, tomh009 said:

You can pretty much choose any NHL team and take a look at their draft record over the last five or ten years, and find lots of better players that they overlooked, in almost every draft year. There is no certainty in the draft, and no scout knows for sure who will be the best player. A late-first round pick has only something like a 65% probability of ever becoming an NHL player. Regardless of who is picking.

 

As an example, Tampa Bay is held up as an excellent drafting team. In 2016, they drafted Brett Howden in 27th -- they could have had Alex DeBrincat.  They took Boris Katchouk in 44th and Talyor Raddysh in 58th when they could have had Samuel Girard (47th) or Adam Fox (66th).

 

Nobody does a perfect job in this. Because evaluating prospects is very, very difficult, and predicting their performance in the NHL is even more difficult.

There is a BIG difference between between doing a perfect job and an abysmal job. The lack of ANY impact home grown and drafted players in the lineup is definitely abysmal.

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17 hours ago, tomh009 said:

Some people complain that the drafting is no good, based on us not having our own draft picks on the roster. But, the more trading the GM does, the fewer of your own draft picks you will have on the team, on average.

Quoting my own post since some people don't read all the posts ...

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10 hours ago, tomh009 said:

... They knew the prospect pipeline had no high-quality wingers, and they decided addressing that was worth more than picking the best player available ...

 

That actually was exactly why I called the decision desperation ... at least in the sports context ... my analogy would be ... "Because I, and previous general managers, have failed to draft/acquire a 1C, this year we will reach like a toddler hoping to get the cookie jar on the counter and ignore the drawer full of snacks in front of us"

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1 hour ago, tomh009 said:

Quoting my own post since some people don't read all the posts ...

 It's ok if you think that Bergevin is the top choice for Montreal's GM. The mere existence of this thread indicates that many others will disagree. One thing that can be agreed upon is that the Habs internal drafting and development under the past few GMs has not been good. The Habs are now up against the cap because they have not been able to develop their youth, which would have allowed several years of cost control for above average talent. Instead, they have to pay middle tier money to a lot of average players that they have been forced to acquire due to poor internal development. Bergevin inexplicably keeping Lefebvre for so long while he produced absolutely nothing is a fatal flaw.

 

 

 

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21 minutes ago, huzer said:

 It's ok if you think that Bergevin is the top choice for Montreal's GM.

It's not what I said. I am simply saying things are not so black and white. Picking late in the draft reduces the quality of the picks. All teams overlook players that turn into excellent players, and all teams make picks that turn out poorly. Doing a lot of trading will reduce the number of the team's own picks on the roster, because you (almost) always send out a player in order to get another one. This is simply life in today's NHL.

 

As to replacing Bergevin, there may be a better candidate available. But at least in this thread we have not come up with many compelling options, let alone ones that are available immediately.

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2 minutes ago, tomh009 said:

As to replacing Bergevin, there may be a better candidate available. But at least in this thread we have not come up with many compelling options, let alone ones that are available immediately.

 

I feel the same way. There may be a better candidate out there but I am not sure who that would be. In this salary cap world drafting and development is something you absolutely have to get done right as you need a constant supply of young players on ELC's to make the cap work.  Habs can do better in this area. 

 

 

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I find the excuse-making for MB a bit tiresome. He should be evaluated on results.


Those results are very mixed. He inherited a very good hand, but it all collapsed in 2016. This organization has rotted out from within via the inexorable aging-out of its cornerstone players (Price, Weber, Petry, maybe Gallagher, and in an earlier iteration, Pleks).

 

At the same time, he did pull off some Sam Pollock-level wheeling and dealing last season to put the team in a position to go to the Finals. I will always give him full credit for that. The problem is, radical patch-up work is not a sustainable GMing model.

 

Drafting and development has simply not been very good, and when you squint into the future, there are few reasons for real optimism. Caufield is the only elite prospect. We can say, "well, we haven't tanked, so what do you expect." And yet MB benefited from two #3 overall picks. He has Josh Anderson to show for it and that's it.

 

Because the future looks like sh*t - despite 3-4 fairly dismal regular season results in sequence - Bergevin should be allowed to walk the plank IMHO.

 

The view that none of the replacements mooted in this thread look like a huge upgrade is, I feel, based on a certain sleight of hand. MB is a veteran GM. Most of his possible replacements are not; rather they're guys in other management systems that we know little about. Line up almost ANY GM's c.v. against that of a guy who has not been a GM yet, and the former will always look more impressive than the latter. But by this logic, GMs would never be fired unless they were absolutely, catastrophically disastrous (like Houle or Milbury).

 

So when do you fire a GM? Basically, when the organization is in a threadbare state and you don't see a compelling reason for believing in its future. That's where we are now. Time for MB to go. 

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What seems to be missing is a long-term plan.  Instead it is always a scramble (and the Habs aren't alone)

 

Without looking at position, draft place, etc., I believe teams should be planning around type of contracts.

 

There are really 4 types (an argument can be made for 5, but I am trying to keep it simple for his example).

 

1. - your top level players (on average earning between $8-$10+/million season)

2. - your tier 2 players (on average earning between $6-$8 million/season)

3. - your tier 3 players, and those on bridge deals (on average earning between $3-$5 million/season)

4. - your tier 4 players, and those on entry level contracts (on average earning between $1-$2 million/season)

 

With an $81.5 million dollar cap hit - teams should structure their teams as follows (and I've averaged the salary per group):

 

1. - 2 players ($18 million)

2. - 3 players ($21 million)

3. - 5 players ($20 million)

4. 14 players ($21 million)

 

Yes, you can juggle the groups a bit, but remember if you want less Group 4 players and more Group 3 players, you'll have to have less Group 2 players as well.

 

Sure, it is tricky, but GMs are paid millions of dollars to figure that out.  It literally is their job, isn't it?

 

What makes this even easier is that teams know when players will graduate a level, for the most part.  Entry level contracts move up to bridge deals, then move up to either tier 1 or tier 2 (depending on the player).

 

A GM should always being looking at their team this way.  Yes, the Pandemic has led to a stagnant salary cap which makes things a little more complicated, but lot's of things always factor in).

 

Players do things on the ice (it is a game).

 

For GMs it is in the board room (it is a business).

 

Successful businesses have a plan, and a contingency plan (or plan B)

 

So, what does Montreal have right now (and I'll take Weber out of the equation) (and a $5.5 m player, for example, would be in Group 2):

 

1. - 1 player ($10.5 million)

2. - 4 players ($23.75 million)

3. - 10 players ($35.675 million)

4. - 8 players ($7.757)

 

Total = 23 players - $77.682 million  PLUS Alzner's buyout of $1.958 million = $79.64 million

 

Room =$1.86 million

 

And - I did not include Caufield, or the following players who are filling in for the massive number of injuries we have now:

 

Pezzette

Poehling

Belizile

Norlinder

Primeau

Montembeault

 

Striking the right balance is crucial.  But as i aid, planning is even more important - Suzuki goes from $863,000 to $7.875 million next year....

 

Evans also goes up about $1m next year, but the Alzner buyout drops about $1m to even that out.

 

Everybody else stays the same  

 

And the following players are free agents:

Lehkonen (RFA)

Chiarot (UFA)

Kulak (UFA)

Romanov (RFA)

Paquette (UFA)

Perreault (UFA)

 

Some won't be back, but those who aren't will have to be replaced....

 

 

 

 

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34 minutes ago, tomh009 said:

It's not what I said. I am simply saying things are not so black and white. Picking late in the draft reduces the quality of the picks. All teams overlook players that turn into excellent players, and all teams make picks that turn out poorly. Doing a lot of trading will reduce the number of the team's own picks on the roster, because you (almost) always send out a player in order to get another one. This is simply life in today's NHL.

 

As to replacing Bergevin, there may be a better candidate available. But at least in this thread we have not come up with many compelling options, let alone ones that are available immediately.

 

If we, random internet people, could pluck a GM out of the air, we may be more than just random internet people. I don't think anyone here is plugged in to the hockey executive world, and probably much less the french hockey executive world.

 

As far as trading/drafting lower, you wouldn't have to trade as much if you could internally develop. Generally on a contending roster, you're filling in the complementary pieces at the trade deadline more than doing roster shakeups. At some point, 10 years of swings and misses at draft picks, and be unable to land one impact player out of 77 draft picks points to either poor scouting or poor development. I'll even dial it back and say one top 6 forward (Caufield may eventually be that, so 1 top 6 forward in 77 picks, 1 top 4 dman in Romanov). This isn't a case of overlooking players and revisionist history. This is a case of where's the beef? 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

It would certainly be interesting, in the sense of the curse:

 

"May you live in interesting times"

 

... but his hat is apparently officially in the ring

 

 

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