The headlines are alive today with trades all over the NHL. Kaberle to Boston. White to San Jose. Wheeler and Stuart to Atlanta. etc. etc. etc.
I, like most Habs fans, have had my eyes peeled, waiting for that big announcement. “Habs acquire Crosby in exchange for Hamrlik” and “Gauthier announces the signing of Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook in exchange for Scott Gomez and Youppi!” I don’t know why these moves haven’t been announced yet.
In all seriousness, there seems to be a little panic happening in the Habs Blogosphere, and I’ll admit I’m feeling a little edgy myself. Seeing all these moves happening and not seeing anything come by way of Montreal is a little hard to take especially with Wisniewski going down in Edmonton last night.
Fans, bloggers et al, all seem to be screaming for Gauthier to do something about the defence, and are in full on panic mode about it. I ask everyone to sit down for a second, relax, and think it through a little bit. If Gauthier was to make some incredible move and traded Andrei Kostitsyn and Ben Maxwell + picks to Chicago for Seabrook, would we be better off? I don’t think we would.
This teams weakness, all season long, has not been defense. It has been a lack of offensive prowess. Yes we have speed. Yes we can handle the puck and move it into the offensive zone. What we lack is a big winger with a quick finish. Pacioretty is coming along quite nicely and should be a great Hab for years to come, but that only addresses one line. Unless he plays on both the Plekanec AND Gomez lines, we have a glaring void that it has become painfully obvious, Kostitsyn isn’t going to fill. Gone are the days of talking about Andrei’s “potential”, here are the days of wasted years and no results. The problem is, there just aren’t alot of guys available that fill the void the Habs have at this point. The big rumour is, and has been for weeks, that Gauthier is trying to land Stephen Weiss from the Panthers, and although Weiss is a great player, he is a center and doesn’t address the glaring issue at hand.
If Gauthier wanted to cash in some coupons with his former club, he should have found a way to get Nathan Horton in the summer before Boston did. He is exactly what this team needs. Now, I don’t know what he’s going to do. Penner? Not worth the money. (just ask Brian Burke)
I do know one thing. Gauthier seems to remain committed to working on the offensive side of the puck. Yes the defence is beat to hell, but making a big move to save only this season is way too short sighted.
Here’s a thought. If Gauthier were to move players two days before their chance to play in the Heritage classic, what kind of effect do you think this would have on his reputation with players around the league? Maybe there is a deal in place and he’s waiting until after this giant media event to pull the trigger.
I’m just sayin’………