Montreal Canadiens

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Off-Season Analysis - The Goaltending

Over the last few weeks, we've taken in-depth looks at the forwards (first the top six and then "the best of the rest") and defense of the Montreal Canadiens, grading their 2009-10 season, ranking the players amongst each other and looking ahead to what their 2010-11 season might look like. While there may have been a few players that others graded and ranked differently, fans and readers generally consented on what this team's line-up would look like, in terms of skaters, and where they played, from best to "worst". The top six is going to look exactly the same as it did for the most part last season. The defense has been set since last year's playoffs. And plus or minus a coup...

I found Gauthier's Blackberry

Well, it’s mid August and we can safely say that the worst off-season since 2004-2005 (get it?) is coming to an end. With only one major free agent on the block, then off the block, then back on the block again the summer has been as boring and confusing as a post game interview with Andrei Kostitsyn. While there were some semi-exciting moments (The Thrashers becoming the messed up cloning experiment of the Blackhawks, the Leafs acquiring forwards people have heard of etc.) the Summer of 2010 was not the best summer for Hockey fans. In Montreal, we got our summer off to a bang with the trading of Halak, but after that it’s as if Gauthier was like “K, the rest can wait until September, ...

Off-Season Analysis: The Defense

Over the last couple of weeks, we've taken an in-depth look at the forwards of the Montreal Canadiens, coming out of last season and heading into the next. First, we looked at the top-six forwards, ranking the Canadiens top 2 lines and looking at what they might look like come October. The answer, interesting enough, was that they would look exactly the same as they did last season and during the playoffs. Next, we looked at the "best of the rest" of the forwards, meaning the 3rd and 4th lines, the extras, and anyone who might stand a chance of getting called up this upcoming season. In this case, the two forward lines that will make up the depth of the team next month actually lo...

Cut from his own mold

Partly because I haven’t written anything in forever, partly because I am face-deep in training camp fever from working on one of my own, partly because I was challenged by George Prax to do so, I would like you all to get acquainted with Gabriel Dumont.

Despite the prelude to Bieber-hair in this particular roster shot, this kid is serious business, so take the time to read carefully. The Montreal Canadiens’ 5th round selection of 2009 had a fair share of hype coming out of Midget AAA, a league he led in scoring as he joined Drummondville Voltigeurs for their 25th season. Scoring 72 points in 39 games with Rivière-du-Loup, he was widely regarded as the next Voltigeurs’ phen...

Tinordi Leaves Notre-Dame, Will Play for London Knights

Look who's here? Jarred Tinordi must have had a conversation with Louis Leblanc this past week. The Canadiens' 1st round pick in this past June's draft will be leaving Notre-Dame of the NCAA to join the OHL team that held his rights, the London Knights. Tinordi was selected 22nd overall at the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, with the Canadiens even trading to move up in the draft and select him. Add to this the relentlessness of Mark and Dale Hunter in bringing Tinordi to the OHL, and you can tell that there is something special about this young defenseman. Son of Mark Tinordi, defenseman in the 80s and 90s for the Rangers, Capitals, North Stars and Stars when they moved to Dallas - w...

Off-Season Analysis: The Forwards - Best of the Rest

Last week, we ranked the top-six forwards for the Canadiens this past season, and looked at what might be expected of them as 2010-11 quickly approaches. But as important as having players who score goals and put up big points is, a team obviously can’t play with only two lines. In many instances, the “bottom 6” are just as important as the “top 6” to most teams. The Habs’ Travis Moen is living proof of that, proving himself to be a deciding factor in the Anaheim Ducks Stanley Cup victory in 2007. Do the Canadiens 3rd and 4th lines stack up against the good checking and energy lines around the league? Do the Habs have what it take to ice a group of forwards as good as the ...

Off-Season Analysis: The Top Six Forwards

While we wait for Carey Price and the Canadiens to hammer out a contract, there really isn't much news to discuss. Other than maybe a depth player or two, and of course Price, Pierre Gauthier's summer is pretty much complete, until the Canadiens enter training camp next month. To pass the time until the InterWebs begins to fill up with hockey news, blogs and discussions, I thought it would be interesting to do a position-by-position analysis of the Canadiens roster. We'll be splitting it into several categories: - The top six forwards, which we shall look at today. - The depth forwards, including the 3rd-4th lines as well as any potential call-ups for this season. - The top 4 def...

Leblanc Chooses Junior, Habs Sign Picard

Finally, some blog-worthy news to come out of the Montreal Canadiens' camp. It was announced on Friday evening that the Montreal Canadiens have signed 1st round pick Louis Leblanc to a three-year contract. While terms of the contract were not released, you can expect it to hover around the league maximum for an entry-level contract. The deal means that Leblanc will leave Harvard and his team, the Crimson, after only one year at the Ivy-league university, to come back to his hometown and play for the Montreal Junior of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. While he is eligible to play for the Hamilton Bulldogs, he will likely spend the season in the Q, in order to fill out his fram...

Maxim Lapierre Re-Signs with the Canadiens

According to various sources, Maxim Lapierre has re-signed with the Montreal Canadiens for the upcoming season. His new, 1-year deal is slated to be worth between $840,000 and $900,000, depending on the source, but which ever number ends up becoming official, it would be a great figure for the 3rd line forward and for the Canadiens. The deal will only slightly exceed the qualifying offer that Pierre Gauthier and the Canadiens were obliged to offer Lapierre before the start of free agency, at the end of June. As a matter of fact, Richard Labbé at La Presse is reporting that the issue was never the dollar amount for Lapierre, but the term on the contract. The Montreal native wanted to...

St. Louis Blues Sign Halak to 4-year, $15 Million Deal

The St. Louis Blues have ensured that they will have a starting goaltender for the foreseeable future today, inking Jaroslav Halak to a 4-year, $15 million deal, which will average out to $3.75 million per season. Halak was acquired by the Blues from the Montreal Canadiens last month in exchange for prospects Lars Eller and Ian Schultz. The deal raised many eyebrows, both in Montreal from fans and the media, as well as from pundits around the league. Coming off a career year, Halak was considered the major reason for the Canadiens post-season success and berth in the conference finals. Many regarded him as the better of the two goaltenders in Montreal, and considered trading one of t...