The Montreal Canadiens have punched their ticket to failure. How is that possible, you’re asking? I’ll give you a few reasons why.
Bob Gainey signed every available known player he could, so how does that result in failure? Why don’t you ask Glen Sather and the New York Rangers organization? Sather’s 2002-03 roster consisted of players, Mark Messier, Alexei Kovalev, Brian Leetch, Eric Lindros, Petr Nedved, and Jaromir Jagr to name a few. This team couldn’t even finish in eighth place to make the playoffs. It wasn’t just the 2002-03 season that had an incredibly overpaid, stacked Rangers squad, it was like this for near 10 seasons, all of which were unsuccessful. I watched more Rangers games during those years than any other team, I found it mind-boggling that an all-star team like this couldn’t beat anyone; I would joke about how AHL teams could potentially give them a tough time on the ice.
So now, Bob Gainey has signed Scott Gomez, Brian Gionta, Mike Cammalleri, Jaroslav Spacek, and Hal Gill. “WHOOPEE!”
In the process of acquiring these apparent superstars, they lose Alexei Kovalev, Chris Higgins, Mike Komisarek, and team captain Saku Koivu. I’m sure more players such as Alex Tanguay and Robert Lang are on their way out too. So what are all the Habs fans getting so excited over? I guess Scott Gomez’s 16 goals are worth the $8,000,000 salary he has? Hal Gill did win a cup with Pittsburgh last season, but it was only two years ago playing with the Toronto Maple Leafs when people around the league were saying his career was over. Gill is a below average defenceman that played within a great system at Pittsburgh. Francois Beauchemin was available for the blue line, but apparently home town boys aren’t part of the plan for 2009-10 in the city of Montreal, Bob Gainey has decided team USA would look good wearing the Habs logo.
Teams like the Detroit Red Wings win every year because they don’t dump half their roster; they stick with their team, making only a couple minor changes, the NY Rangers technique clearly doesn’t work.
Montreal seemed to be headed in the right direction just a few seasons ago; they had former players Gainey and Guy Carbonneau directing the team, a young star goaltender in Carey Price, as well as a good mix of veterans and prospects. Gainey has since managed to lose Sheldon Souray, Mark Streit, and now Komisarek in the past few years, if that isn’t a top three manning the blue line with cup winning potential, then I don’t know what is. He also fired head coach Guy Carbonneau after less than two seasons behind the bench.
Mike Cammalleri won’t be scoring 39 goals without Jarome Iginla’s assistance, especially under Jacques Martin’s dreadful defensive system. Jacques Martin is the complete opposite of a players coach, he has a system and you better follow it, player communication is not a known trait of Martin’s. What was wrong with Bob Hartley being hired as head coach? He’s exactly what this team could have used, he communicates well with his players, has a Stanley Cup on his resume, demands respect, and speaks French. I bet the Kostitsyn brother’s would think twice about going on all night benders in downtown Montreal with Hartley keeping tabs on them, Martin won’t even be aware of the party scene that’s all around his team, he’ll be too busy drawing up plays for his robots…I mean players.
Does any of this look familiar? You may remember the Serge Savard era of being GM for the Canadiens? He made one bad decision after another. What’s with former Habs superstars mucking everything up in the front office?
I suppose if Gainey’s signings don’t work out, he could move one of his goaltenders up to forward or defense, he has four of them.
It will be interesting to watch the Montreal Canadiens 2009-10 season unfold, or shall I say collapse. The fans in Montreal expect a lot from their beloved Canadiens, if Gomez, Gionta and the other new acquisitions aren’t near flawless, they will certainly be made aware of it sooner rather than later, especially being American born. Bob Gainey may want to look into one way flights back to Dallas.