So are the Current Montreal Canadiens as good as the former Habs playing in the NHL? You decide. By Jamie Gilcig October 23, 2011

CFN –  They say the mark of a good organization is to have a better roster of players on your team than ones that were and are playing for other squads.  With that in mind I thought I’d take a look around the NHL and see what former Habs are doing compared to the current ones.

Dallas, Bob Gainey’s old team; seem to have the most Habs.     Those guys that weren’t good enough for Montreal seem to be doing quite well in Dallas.  It starts with Mike Ribeiro, Centre, Cap hit $5M.  His attitude was the blame for his exit from Montreal where he peaked in 2003 with 66 points.  He’s hit 83 for Dallas; essentially he’s a Tomas Plekanec lite.   I won’t even cover what the team got for him from Dallas.

Michael Ryder, also 31 like Ribeiro won the Stanley Cup with Boston last year.   The winger peaked with 30 goals with Montreal and can usually be counted on for 20-30 per year.   His cap hit is $3.5M.

Stephane Robidas never found  rhythm in Montreal, but once he hit Dallas he became the stalwart of their D corps peaking at 41 points in 2009.  In the last three seasons he’s also averaged over 225 hits per year.  Cap hit $3.3M.

Sheldon Souray.  Good seasons, injuries, strange trade requests have found this brute in Dallas where he’s off to a ferocious start and on pace for 51 points.   Cap hit $1.65M

Mark Streit is with the Islanders.  After missing 20010 with injury this point getter is back on track and on pace for 81 points.   Cap hit $4.1M

Ryan O”Byrne, the 6’5 D man’s biggest critique was that he didn’t play his size and wasn’t aggressive enough.  Now the anchor of the Avalanche he’s on pace for a 20 point season and 174 hits.  Cap hit; $1.8M

Sergei Kostitsyn seemed to always be in the dog house in Montreal.  The change of scenery has done the wiley Russian some good as he’s been putting up strong numbers for his $2.5M cap hit.

Matt D’Agostini probably should’ve taken a page from Max Pacioretty’s hand book.  While never going to put up numbers the way the Habs were using him; once in St. Louis he too blossomed into a 20 goal per year man adding in 70 hits for 2010.  Cap hit: $1.65M

Jaroslav Halak is off to a poor start this season, but last year was a good one for the man who nearly carried the team to Lord Stanley’s Cup only to be traded for Lars Eller and some spare parts.   His cap hit is $3.25M

Jose Theodore has never had the glow of his early career in Montreal.  Not an A list goalie, but a serviceable NHL goalie.  He’s off to a good start with the Panthers this year with better numbers than Carey Price at $1.5M

Guillaume Latendresse.  Another Hab with expectations that weren’t in synch with his talents which led him to a 25 goal season with the Wild after being traded for Benoit Pouliot who’s now with Boston.   Guillaume’s cap hit is $2.5M

Former Captain Saku Koivu plays with amigo Teamu Selanne in Anaheim now.   The gritty centre gets $2.5M per year.    Domenic Moore was a rental player for a 2nd round draft pick.  Montreal didn’t keep the plucky face off man and he’s with Tampa Bay where he pulls in  $1.1M – Tom Pyatt also skates for the Lighting as does Marc Andre Bergeron who’s off to a fierce start with 9 points in 8 games.  His cap hit is $1M.

The very light playing Alex Tanguay has 7 points in 7 games for Calgary where he’s signed long term for $3.5M per year.

Ryan McDonagh is a stalwart for the Rangers now at $1.3M which allows Glen Sather to sign some of the silly free agent contract he does like Scott Gomez whom he traded to the Habs to get the D man.

The Leafs have star centre Mikhail Grabvoski at $2.9M and D man Mike Komiserak, the player so well thought of by Hab management that they let him assist the coaches on the bench his last year with the squad while he was hurt.   He signed a big money contract with Toronto that he hasn’t lived up to yet at $4.5M.

Chris Higgins is on fire after a few off season once Montreal let the verbal winger go.   His $1.9M contract is looking like a bargain now.  Yappy team mate Max Lapierre is also with the Nucks for $1M

Face Off expert, something Montreal is sorely missing so far this season,  Jeff Halpern is back with the undefeated Washington Capitals for $825K while vastly under appreciated Roman Hamrlik labours for $3.5M

So in review here is a depth chart of what the former Hab team would look like.

Centre: Ribeiro $5M  Koivi  $2.5M  Grabvoski $2.9  Halpern 825K

Wings: Ryder $3.5 Sergei Kostitsyn $2.5 Alex Tanguay $3.5  D’Agostoni $1.65  Latendresse 2.5  Higgins $1.9

Defense, the Habs biggest weakness.  I’ve left of The Wiz as he’s suspended and has yet to play in 2011.

Roman Hamrlik $3.5  Stephane Robidas $3.3 Mark Streit $4.1  Sheldon Souray $1.65  Ryan O’Byrne $1.80 Ryan McDonagh $1.3 Marc-Andre Bergeron $1M Mike Komiserak $4.5

Goalie – Jose Theodore $1.5  Jaroslav Halak $4.25 for a total of $53.75.

Again, this is just an exercise of fun and whimsy which is more than this years Habs have offered so far in their nightmarish start that has then dead last in the conference.

Hindsight always makes people look smarter of course, and it’s never being easy being a GM in professional sports.

The bottom line is that Geoff Molson has to decide if he purchased the greatest Hockey franchise in history to win cups or sell beer.  If it’s the first then he has to get his management in order and if it’s to sell beer…well….

What do you think Hab fans?  You can post your comments below.

Choose Cornwall

1 Comment

  1. Jamie. They are Les Canadiens and not The Canadians.

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