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Koivu wants to stay

Posted 3:46 PM ET | Comments 0
So after much speculation, as well as some harsh words earlier from Koivu stating he has no desire to be part of a re-building team, he has stated that we wants to remain a Hab and to part of the solution that brings a winning attitude back to Les Habs. Well, to do that, some changes have to be made, and one of them in particular needs to be made to show Saks the team is serious about winning, and with making their Captain a little happier.

I think the team will once again improve by subtraction. With a number of free agents leaving and the inevitable buyout of Samsonov, as well as the continued development of some of our younger players and the ones now in the minors ready to come up the team will be better to start the season.

Lets not forget that this team came out of the gates last year strong, and with the exception of the final 2 games of this season , finished the year strong.

While the talk of landing Vinny in a trade is fun, and I would celebrate it, providing we didn't give up too much in the way of prospects and younger talant to get him, I don't think we need to obtain that kind of "superstar" to make a serious push for the playoffs.

If I could sign ANY free agents this season I would focus on just one that would make Saks very happy, and that Teemu Selanne. We have all seen how this duo lights it up every time they play together internationally. I would love to see what they could do on a more regular basis.

On defense, I would love to say we are going to resign both Souray and Markov, but I don't think thats going to happen. The focus should be on Markov. While he dosn't have the booming shot from the blueline, he is less questionable defensivly and is a great setup man on the PP. I would target one, maybe two UFA's on defense, a number 1-2 guy, I like Mattheau Schnieder in that role, and perhaps a 3-4, look towards a Sutton or Sydor type for that. Also on defense I think Emelin will get a good long look in training camp this year and may be ready to make the leap if the russians will let him go.

So, here's what I would like to see, pure speculation of course.

UFA's signed - Selanne, Schneider, Sutton/Sydor

UFA's resigned - Markov, Bonk, Johnson

RFA'S signed - Pleks, Higgins, Ryder, Bonk, Komi, Georges

Lines as I would like to see at the start of the season...

Higgins, Koivu, Selanne
Latendresse, Pleks, Ryder
A. Kostitsyn, Bonk, Johnson
Grabovsky, Chipchura/Bonk, LaPierre
extras- S. Kostitsyn, Locke, Murray

Markov, Schneider
Komi, Sutton/Sydor
Boullion, Streit
extras - Emelin, Carle

extras, Denis, Price

Teams is still built on speed here, and may be a little soft. We could look at getting an enforcer into the mix, more so with the departure of Rivet and Souray.

You'll also notice a lack of Kovalev here... I would LOVE to see him moved for a prospect, or picks, much the same kind of package we sent to the Rangers when we acquired him.
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