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TropicalFruitGirl26

Habs' Dealings.........

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Montreal.thumb.jpg.2eb8c51e6e4438d89e9eda4f3e17b27b.jpg

 

The team has fallen a bit in the standings, are on a current 4-game losing streak, hearing the boo birds at home, and dealing with some key injuries up front (Drouin, Gallagher, Armia, Byron).
Still though, half the season to go and the Habs made some deals and signings in an attempt to regain traction and/or tread some water while they get bodies back.

First up, they shipped out the seldom used Mike Reilly to Ottawa for a 5th rounder in 2021 and minor league forward Andrew Sturtz.
In Reilly's place on defense, the Habs bring in Marco Scandella from Buffalo and only gave up a 2020 4th rounder to do so.
And finally, the Canadiens took a chance on former King, now free agent, Ilya Kovalchuk on a two way contract... 700K at the NHL level, 70K if he stays in the minors.

That's quite a bit of movement in a short amount of time, likely due to necessity, but picking up hometown boy Scandella is a nice acquisition for them as Marco was having a nice bounce back year after a very mediocre 2018-19 that saw him be almost non viable as an NHL'er.
Scandella himself won't turn around the fortunes of the Habs with regards to production, but he will afford them yet another solid veteran defenseman who WON'T be asked to play top minutes with the Habs like he was with the Sabres

Veterans Shea Weber, Jeff Petry and Ben Chiarot should assure that Scandella shouldn't have to "cover" for young players still learning their way, and he can likely be slotted in a bottom pairing where his physical size and good point shot can be put to better use.

As for Kovalchuk, it is clear the Habs are trying to catch thunder in a bottle and are hoping he has something, anything left in him to try and help the forwards group move in the right direction once again while they wait for guys to get back, then supplement them once they do.
Perhaps Montreal, even missing some key forwards, has enough skill and depth compared to the current LA Kings to make better use of Kovalchuk's skillset, such as they are?

Maybe. But then again, the Habs usually like guys up front who backcheck with some regularity, which makes signing a guy like Kovalchuk seem even more of a desperation measure than one where they feel he is some sort of "missing piece".

We will see how this works out for the men in 'rouge et bleu'
Trade deadline still isn't for about another month......might they still players to move around then?

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@TropicalFruitGirl26

 

Man you just beat me to this, lol.

 

 I listened to the Hab (English) broadcast for last nights game, they were pointing out that the top three Canadien d-men were playing ridiculous minutes, especially Weber and Petry while the bottom three are playing 15-16 minutes a night and the hope is Scandella will be able to step in and take some pressure off the big boys and handle around 20 minutes a night. Yikes. Anyone who has seen him play the last few years knows how slow he is now and he is not the answer for that role.

 

 Kovie, two way deal, gets back in shape, arrives with Gallagher just ahead of Drouin and they suddenly have the makings of a potent top nine for the stretch drive. Low risk, medium reward, good signing.

 

 A few others, not sure where to put them, Reilly to Ottawa obviously still looking to make a mark in the NHL looking more and more like an emergencycallup kind of guy who drifts to Europe in a few years. 

 

OH! Frolik to Byuffalo for a 4th rounder, kind of out of necessity, as Oloffson is out for six weeks or so. Career third liner, good player, nothing special but Buffalo really needed him badly.

 

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OH and the other one, to nobodies surprise Justin Williams is expected to sign with the Canes this weekend and begin a onditioning stint to position himself on the third line, healthy and fresh for the postseason. 

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@yave1964

 

Well, if the Canadiens indeed are looking to have Scandella log heavy minutes, then they may actually regress him to where he was last season when he seemed like he and Ristolainen were the workhorses, and NEITHE of those guys are anywhere near top pair guys.

Scandella's season this year wasn't spectacular by any stretch, of course, but at least he was more focused on his own end of the ice a bit more, chipping in here and there offensively and just looked overall a bit more like the Scandella that played really well for the Wild before being traded.

Middling defense type role at best for Marco, bottom pair ideally, would be the way to go for him in Montreal, IMO, but we will see.
He will be a UFA at season's end and I think Buffalo may have sold high on him (good for them), but he still represents an improvement for Montreal over what they had going with Reilly.

Also, the Habs will have a bit of time to see whether Scandella would be worth a re-sign...………...or, get this....perhaps FLIP him at the deadline if a better, longer term option becomes available and Scandella is still playing well enough to attract another team's attention who wants a veteran bottom pair guy with good playoff experience?
Hey, we've seen stranger things.

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@Antti_Laxative

 

Your Habs made some moves.
What's your take on these?

Like, not, or are indifferent?
Do they still have a shot at an Atlantic top three spot? Good enough to compete with Metro teams for a wild card?

Marc Bergevin doesn't seem to think this season is over!

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I loved Kovalchuk

 

 

 

12 years ago 😉

 

Clearly Gally's departure with the concussion protocol is the biggest of the losses to injury we currently needed to cover. But every team has injuries.

 

Nah, if we sneak into the playoffs I'd be surprised.  I want to know why MB said "no more rentals" ... Then pulls these deals.

 

We have one commodity and that's Carey, and even his best years are behind him. It's a mess to be sure.

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Posted (edited)
26 minutes ago, Antti_Laxative said:

I loved Kovalchuk

 

 

 

12 years ago 😉

 

Clearly Gally's departure with the concussion protocol is the biggest of the losses to injury we currently needed to cover. But every team has injuries.

 

Nah, if we sneak into the playoffs I'd be surprised.  I want to know why MB said "no more rentals" ... Then pulls these deals.

 

We have one commodity and that's Carey, and even his best years are behind him. It's a mess to be sure.

 

 

No doubt Gallagher is the straw that stirs things up front (literally!), but I thought losing Joel Armia was a huge blow as well.
Armia isn't as well known a player, but a guy that big, who hits and was on pace to easily shattering career highs in production (albeit, his previous career highs weren't spectacular, but still....), can't be easy to replace either.

Kovalchuk certainly won't cover for what Armia was bringing the team...MAYBE, if he has a bit of fuel left, he may cover some of the production lost with Gallagher and/or Drouin, but of course he has neither the attitude and swagger of Gallagher, nor the youth and no longer the overall skillset of Drouin.

MB often says things, then does something else it seems, so should be no surprise there. 
Remember, that one time, at band camp, when he said Drouin was the answer at the 1C position? Good times..... :D

 

At least you get a solid former Wild on defense. He will see more ice surface than Mike Reilly did.

 


 

Edited by TropicalFruitGirl26

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Oh for sure....I was a huge Scandella guy going back to the world juniors...but as always, we have zero goal scorers

 

Carey can't win em all 1-0 

 

Ouch....that Drouin comment 😣

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21 minutes ago, Antti_Laxative said:

Oh for sure....I was a huge Scandella guy going back to the world juniors...but as always, we have zero goal scorers

 

Carey can't win em all 1-0 

 

Ouch....that Drouin comment 😣

 

Haha...no harm intended there.
It's no secret I am not a Habs fan (and I truly relish every victory the Lightning can get over them), but I still recognize certain players on the squad that are quite good.....and believe it or not, I think Drouin is one of them.....and Montreal really would be better off with him on the team rather than on IR.

I just thought it was very Bergevin-esque to think he could do as a professional what he last did in juniors, if I am not mistaken...play center, and TOP center at that, when he seemed to be making perfectly good strides as a winger both in the AHL with TB's Crunch, and with the Bolts themselves before being traded.

Apparently, Bergevin and/or the head coach decided winger was best for Drouin after all, as you know, that's where they had him prior to his injury.
But I have to wonder if they trade a potential 2-4 d-man like Sergachev if they honestly felt from the beginning they'd end up with Drouin the winger, rather than Drouin the center.

Weber, Petry (fantastic season for him!), Danault, the previously mentioned Armia, Max Domi, that beast Nate Thompson on your 4th line, and of course, Carey Price are all guys I think highly of.
And while I am no huge fan of Thomas Tatar, his year isn't going too shabby.

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Posted (edited)

I actually like Drouin a lot as well. And yes the guys you are familiar with *should* be enough (adding Gally back in there) to sneak in as the 7-8th seed I think anyway....but sneaking in doesn't cut it.

 

PS...I'm not a big Ning Dynasty guy as long as we are being honest, but I loved Marty St. Louis - going back to his days with the Catamounts, and I felt he should have won the Hobey Baker when they gave it instead to Bowling Green's Brian Holzinger. And I always felt that Vinny would have looked great in Bleu, Blanc et Rouge (although those who said he'd be the next Beliveau pissed me off. He was my all time hockey hero...there will never be a next Beliveau)

Edited by Antti_Laxative
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4 hours ago, Antti_Laxative said:

I actually like Drouin a lot as well. And yes the guys you are familiar with *should* be enough (adding Gally back in there) to sneak in as the 7-8th seed I think anyway....but sneaking in doesn't cut it.

 

PS...I'm not a big Ning Dynasty guy as long as we are being honest, but I loved Marty St. Louis - going back to his days with the Catamounts, and I felt he should have won the Hobey Baker when they gave it instead to Bowling Green's Brian Holzinger. And I always felt that Vinny would have looked great in Bleu, Blanc et Rouge (although those who said he'd be the next Beliveau pissed me off. He was my all time hockey hero...there will never be a next Beliveau)

Sneaking in-anything can happen. Columbus, Carolina, Colorado and Dallas all came in as wildcards last year and knocked off their first round opponents. And look at them, Canes, 'Lanche and Stars among the league best and CBJ in spite of losing a ton of talent are hanging around the playoff mix. Just getting in and winning a round or so gives you something to build on for the following year. 

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8 hours ago, TropicalFruitGirl26 said:

As for Kovalchuk, it is clear the Habs are trying to catch thunder in a bottle and are hoping he has something, anything left in him to try and help the forwards group move in the right direction once again while they wait for guys to get back, then supplement them once they do.
Perhaps Montreal, even missing some key forwards, has enough skill and depth compared to the current LA Kings to make better use of Kovalchuk's skillset, such as they are?

 

If Kovalchuk can't make it in Montreal then he needs to retire. This is the best opportunity he'll ever have to put up points again. 

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15 hours ago, WordsOfWisdom said:

 

If Kovalchuk can't make it in Montreal then he needs to retire. This is the best opportunity he'll ever have to put up points again. 

 

I think you may be right.
I thought if someone was going to pick up Kovalchuk, it would be some team that was hoping he'd be their "savior", which of course, he wouldn't be.

But with the Habs, they aren't looking for so much a savior as for someone who can just help out with scoring and maybe provide secondary scoring, or even third string scoring, once they get healthy players back.

So yea, I agree that this is an opportunity Ilya should absolutely be grateful for and if he can't make it work with the Habs, he is just done.

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      @yave1964   Well, if the Canadiens indeed are looking to have Scandella log heavy minutes, then they may actually regress him to where he was last season when he seemed like he and Ristolainen were the workhorses, and NEITHE of those guys are anywhere near top pair guys. Scandella's season this year wasn't spectacular by any stretch, of course, but at least he was more focused on his own end of the ice a bit more, chipping in here and there offensively and just looked overall a bit
    • 1
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      Oh for sure....I was a huge Scandella guy going back to the world juniors...but as always, we have zero goal scorers   Carey can't win em all 1-0    Ouch....that Drouin comment 😣
    • 1
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      I actually like Drouin a lot as well. And yes the guys you are familiar with *should* be enough (adding Gally back in there) to sneak in as the 7-8th seed I think anyway....but sneaking in doesn't cut it.   PS...I'm not a big Ning Dynasty guy as long as we are being honest, but I loved Marty St. Louis - going back to his days with the Catamounts, and I felt he should have won the Hobey Baker when they gave it instead to Bowling Green's Brian Holzinger. And I always felt that Vinny woul
    • 1
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      If Kovalchuk can't make it in Montreal then he needs to retire. This is the best opportunity he'll ever have to put up points again. 
    • 1
      Post
      I think you may be right. I thought if someone was going to pick up Kovalchuk, it would be some team that was hoping he'd be their "savior", which of course, he wouldn't be. But with the Habs, they aren't looking for so much a savior as for someone who can just help out with scoring and maybe provide secondary scoring, or even third string scoring, once they get healthy players back. So yea, I agree that this is an opportunity Ilya should absolutely be grateful for and if he can't make i

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