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"Magg's Habs Blog"
Montreal, QC • Canada • 16 Years Old • Male

What's next?

Posted 8:43 PM ET | Comments 0
After losing Souray, Bonk, Johnson, Aebisher, Niinimaa, and not being able to sign Briere or Smyth, Bob Gainey had some work to do. He filled some major holes by signing Hamrlik {although quite overpaid}, Smolinski, and Kostopoulos. Hamrlik solidifies the defense, and while he lacks Souray's scoring punch, he's not going to be an -28, meaning less goals against, less work for the goalies, and more of a chance to win for the Bleu-Blanc-Rouge. Smolinski is an upgrade from Bonk, he can score 20 goals and you don't lose anything defensively. Kostopoulos adds some grit, but I don't see him being a big part of the future.

Now, we've all heard all this, and this is when people start speculating and asking...what comes next?

Gainey announced that he was done spending, but Eklund reported numourous times that the Habs are looking at Selanne. Obviously, if he's trying to sign Teemu he wants him to play with Saku. THAT'S BECAUSE SAKU KOIVU IS CAPABLE OF 90-100 POINTS. Before you say anything, let's remind ourselves who he played with last year-Michael Ryder, Chris Higgins, Alex Kovalev, and Guillaume Latendresse, and he still put up 75 points. Other than Ryder, none of those players, except Higgins, who I am very high on, are really "great" or potentially great players. Both Ryder and Higgins have 40 goal potential, but haven't quite reached it yet. If Ryder can be consistent and play well all year long, he can get 40. Higgins probably can get there too, barring injury (he was on pace for 50 before his injury). So Saku doesn`t exactly have the cream of the crop to work with. By bringing in Selanne, BG arms Koivu with a 40 goal scorer.

Another issue is defense. Sure, the Top 3 is looking good (Markov, Komisarek, Hamrlik), but Dandenault and Bouillon are not the answer. Bouillon has the heart of a lion, but it was when he came back last year that the team`s chemistry fell apart, when the skid began. Its not his fault, but I`d rather see a young guy like O`Byrne develop than have him and Dandenault. Trade them for 5th, 6th rounders, clear some cap space, and go after another defenseman who can really solidify the defense. Danny Markov, IMO, would be a great fit. Now, supposing all my wishes are granted, the Habs look pretty darn good:

Selanne-Koivu-Ryder
Higgins-Plekanec-Kostitsyn
Streit-Smolinski-Latendresse
Begin-Lapierre-Chipchura

(Murray, Kostopoulos)

Markov-Komisarek
Hamrlik-O`Byrne
D.Markov-Gorges

(Valentenko)

Huet
Halak

(Price)

Unfortunately, this is not guarantee, but I think Koivu deserves a guy like Selanne after everything he`s done for this organization. Also, unloading Kovalev gets rid of unwanted attitude, and he wasn`t trying half the time.

I don`t thinkk we need a Marleau right now. Sure, it would be nice, but then you would have to break up the young, exciting line of Higgins-Plekanec-Kostitsyn, which did really well last year.

Again, this is just me explaining what I would do if I were Bob Gainey. I did not go outside the limit between reality and "never gonna happen". I am simply stating my opinion.

Go Habs Go
Filed Under:   Habs   Koivu   Selanne   Gainey   D.Markov  
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