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Game 82: Habs/Leafs

  • At the start of the season – most would have guessed that this final Saturday Night matchup between the Habs and Leafs would have more meaning to the playoff picture.

    Yes, the outcome could effect whether the Habs or Oilers pick second overall in the draft – but ultimately this is not what the schedule makers envisioned when they chose to end the season with this classic match.  With a win the Habs will “lock-up” the third worst record in hockey. If they lose and the Oilers win – the Oilers would finish in 28th spot by virtue of more wins.

    This is hardly what people want to be cheering for at the end of the season, and ultimately it really doesn’t matter much to Habs fans what happens. The difference between 2nd and 3rd in the draft lottery is less than a 5% percent chance at getting the 1st overall draft pick – likely Nail Yakupov.  Furthermore, Montreal fans would probably be happy with 3 or 4 of the top offensive players in the draft – after Yakupov the case could be made for any of Grigorenko, Galchenyuk, and Forsberg – for and against. Grigorenko probably fits team needs best, but rumors of his work ethic waning during the season raise red flags . Galchenyuk was hurt for most of the season following ACL surgery, and then injured his shoulder taking a faceoff. His offensive capacity is not in dispute – but he still represents a large gamble for a team that picks him without having seen him do any of what Yakupov and Grigorenko have shown this season in the CHL. Filip Forsberg has had a good season playing with men in the Swedish league – but 17 points in 43 games is not what you would term elite for a high draft pick as a winger.

    So how will you cheer tonight? My mind is made up – I’m fine with drafting 3rd. Beat the Leafs.

    Go Habs Go!!!!

11 Comments
  1. #1 Senet1 says:
    April 7, 2012 at 2:24 pm

    To me this is an important game just for the fact it is a Leafs/ Habs game and as a habs fan it is important that we win this game if for no other reason in that we want tell the leafs that we are a better team dispite them having more points.

  2. #2 Senet1 says:
    April 12, 2012 at 9:14 pm

    In looking at these defenceman I would say that Hamilton will be stocked with some pretty big talented Defencemen.

    Nathan Beaulieu
    Jarred Tinordi
    Morgan Ellis
    Brendon Nash
    Greg Pateryn
    Mac Bennett
    Darren Dietz

  3. #3 Senet1 says:
    April 12, 2012 at 9:15 pm

    Bennett is only one with no size, he has skill but I would use him in a trade as a prospect.

  4. #4 Senet1 says:
    April 12, 2012 at 9:42 pm

    So the question is do be spend money on defenceman in the FA process or do we bide out time and wait for these guys to move up to the NHL. Based on information that I read all of these guys are capable and should move up to the NHL, which means that with PK, Emelin, Gorges we may have some solid prospects that we either leave in Hamilton as depth or make trades to enhance out system.

  5. #5 Senet1 says:
    April 12, 2012 at 9:45 pm

    If all these guys are legit, then we do not need to draft defenceman for a couple of years, based on having two first rounder and 5 second rounders in the next two years. We either use them to our advantage this year or we make some very good selections next year.

  6. #6 Avatar37 says:
    April 12, 2012 at 10:20 pm

    I wouldn’t say Beaulieu has size or is a physical defenseman, not from the little I saw of him at the world Junior’s, anyway. Most of the names on that list I’m not familiar with, Tinordi and Nash the other two I know.

    As for drafting, it would depend on who is available in what slot. We could sure use a defenseman like Dumba, we could sure use a goalie like Vasilevski, but we need a few top forwards as a priority. If Edmonton is open to trading for Yakupov, then we’d have to consider the price. If Edmonton selects Yakupov, odds are Grigorenko is going next. This leaves us with a choice: Draft Forsberg/Galchenyuk or draft a top defenseman and see if we can swing a trade with Edmonton for a defenseman or two. We have a few stocked in the minors, we wouldn’t even necessarily have to trade the one we draft. We might be able to draft Dumba (Craig Button has him ranked 2nd overall), or Morgan Reilly. What’s interesting is Button has Grigorenko ranked 7th overall in the draft.

    http://www.tsn.ca/draftcentre/feature/?id=49649

    But again, it would depend on Edmonton, what they’d be willing to trade and what they’d be wanting in return. Without knowing that, it’s impossible to say which way I’d go. If Edmonton wants no trade at all (which, considering their need for defensemen and our need for forwards, I’d find unlikely, but for argument sake) then I’d say we have to draft a forward. There are 4 available that look good, although consensus seems to be none of them will be ready to make the jump immediately to the NHL, which is fine. If we wind up with Forsberg or Galchenyuk, and they play a year or two in the minors for seasoning, I’m fine with that. Then, we’d have to take the rest of the draft 1 pick at a time, and see who was available to us when we picked. If we could land Vasilevski, I’d draft him. If we could land Tom Wilson, I’d draft him too (based on the draft analysis).

    Ultimately, it’s up to our scouts and what they report, but we need some bigger wingers and for God’s sake, some players who can take on the heavyweights on other clubs. Get some scrappers in the draft for a change.

  7. #7 Avatar37 says:
    April 12, 2012 at 10:22 pm

    (what I was saying was swing a trade with Edmonton involving a defenseman or two [going their way] and with a forward or two coming back our way)

  8. #8 Senet1 says:
    April 13, 2012 at 9:58 pm

    I get your point avatar, however, our priority to me is getting some goal scorers. Since we lost 26 games by one goal we need to address that situation. Actually, if we ended up tanking two years in a row, I could live with that if it met getting some high quality picks. Many people talk about how good Forsberg is but he only had 17 points in 40 games playing in the Swedish elite league, which is no better than the AHL. So I have some doubts about him. Also many are saying that Ryan Murray is the most NHL ready player in the draft. He is good size at 6’1″ 200lbs, I assume he is still growing.
    I am not so sure that Grigorenko is going to be any better than Galchenyuk. He is a little bigger but at 17-18 who knows how big they will get?

  9. #9 Senet1 says:
    April 13, 2012 at 10:30 pm

    I think if you check the profile of those defenceman I listed you would see their stats and their size. If you click on their names on the web site they seem to be rates with potential to make the NHL. Beaulieu may not be physical but he is big enough not to be pushed off the puck which to me is important. Pateryn is highly rated and plays a physical game at University and he may be the most NHL ready other than Nash. Ellis seems to

    Nathan Beaulieu 6′ 1″
    Mac Bennett 5′ 11″
    Darren Dietz 6′ 1″
    Morgan Ellis 6′ 1″ Some upside but a project
    Brendon Nash 6′ 3″ Nash either moves up or is traded.
    Greg Pateryn 6′ 2″
    Jarred Tinordi 6′ 6″

    My top four out of this list are
    Jarred Tinordi 6′ 6″
    Nathan Beaulieu 6′ 1″
    Greg Pateryn 6′ 2″
    Brendon Nash 6′ 3″

  10. #10 Avatar37 says:
    April 14, 2012 at 5:43 am

    I agree that scoring and toughness are priorities, the question remains how do we go about addressing those needs. What I was saying is that I’d investigate multiple possibilities of how to go about aquiring help. It really depends on what Edmonton wants and is willing to trade. I think Edmonton, with their need for defense, and us with extra defense and need for forwards, would make for a natural trading partner. If I were GM of Montreal, then it would all depend on Edmonton and what they were after and willing to trade.

    I agree with moving Nash and Tinordi up, I thought we should have done that months ago and given them playing time in the NHL. However, it really depends on the players and what point they’re at. As I don’t follow the minors, I have no idea if Nash and Tinordi are ready to make the jump, so I have no idea if they’re ready to start a season for us. We really should have given some of our players in the minors some playing time after our season was all but done. I do know they’d certainly add some size, but size isn’t everything. Henry is 6’6 but he’s not NHL material.

    From everything I’ve read, I like Galchenyuk. I like Forsberg too, his lack of production doesn’t scare me since he’s 17. He would simply be a longer term project, but I have a feeling he’ll find his way into the NHL sometime in the next 3 years, and make a team happy they drafted him.

    Grigorenko scares me, just look at the Penguins now, they’re down 2-0 in their series, Malkin isn’t helping them all that much. 2 games, 0 goals, 2 assists, -5. Crosby has 2 goals, 2 assists, and is +1. I wonder if we drafted Grigorenko if the Penguins would consider a Grigorenko for Crosby trade… We’d get a star who grew up a Habs fan, they’d get a Russian center to play with Malkin. Well, probably not, but it’s a nice thought. =)

  11. #11 Senet1 says:
    April 14, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    Nash unfortnately was injured for a large part of this year so he did not get the chance to move up, he has played a couple of games with the habs last year? Tinordi played Junior in London this year, so he was not eligible to play for the habs since he was sent backt to Junior after camp, which I believe was a good move because from all accounts he matured quite a bit over the year. I like the idea of making an offer to switch #1 picks with Edmonton, especially if we go after Yakapov. Otherwise there is no need, because if Columbus chose Gregorenko then we pick Galchenyuk. There is another player I really like rated about 8th.

    Radek Faksa
    Ht/Wt:6′ 2″/183 lbs
    Position:C
    Team: Kitchener (OHL)

    I watch him on the vidos and he impresses me with his speed, size, and ability to score. He could be eventually better than either of the big Russian centers we are looking at. He likes to mix it up too.

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