Beating the Goons

Fans of the Habs these days certainly come in all shapes and sizes with very unique opinions. I had a unique encounter on twitter today with a “professional” blogger/writer from All Habs. I am not about the bash this person at all because that is not what I do, and I actually enjoy the work he does, but today, him and I just couldn’t seem to agree.

The size, toughness and grit of Les Glorieux has been debated for years and years. New GM Marc Bergevin has done a terrific job ensuring that the Habs are a bigger, stronger and tougher team, but Marc is definitely not done just yet. In fact, Bergevin is no where near complete, as he attempted to snag Tom Sestito off waivers from Philadelphia but Vancouver came up with him. Our GM has done plenty of good things regarding team toughness, signing Prust, Bouillon, Armstrong and Head Coach Michel Therrien.

Bergevin was a hard-nosed player himself back in his playing career, so he understands the importance of team toughness. Marc was a very decent fighter back in his day (Example 1, example 2).┬áSo to any Hab fans who don’t approve of fighting, you may as well get used to it or switch your team.

Nobody can tell me that Habs fans didn’t love the fighters we have had. Georges Laraque, Chris Nilan and of course Brandon Prust have all been fan favorites. Heck, even Brad Staubitz gained a huge fan base in Montreal last year during his brief stint.

Photo: Denis Brodeur/Getty Images

Photo: Denis Brodeur/Getty Images

There seems to be some sort of “theory” out there from the “professional” writers/bloggers world that the Canadiens are better off without an enforcer. To those “professionals” I say wake up and smell the coffee. Brandon Prust simply cannot answer the bell to everyone. He is a cerebral part of the Canadiens and he serves the team best when he is on the ice, not the penalty box. Of course Brandon is a terrific fighter and he will stand up to anyone no matter how many inches and pounds he finds himself lacking. But let’s get real people, he is not a heavy weight and he cannot do all the fighting himself. You may say Moen and White can help with the fighting, but clearly you haven’t been watching the Habs games close enough. Moen seems passive or even scared when it comes to fighting, maybe his concussion last year has something to do with his lack of toughness this year. As for White, he has been playing a solid game as of late not crossing over the line of stupidity, but I’m sure if there was a need to drop the mitts (with a WILLING combatant) White would be glad to fight.

-With apologies to Bryen as I did not mean to copy his piece at all, I loved his piece, I am just adding to it.-

Patrick Bordeleau is a name who could find his way to Montreal for a very cheap return. The 6 foot 6, 225lbs forward from the Colorado Avalanche is a Montreal Native who has spent most of his professional career in the minors but is finally getting a shot in the NHL. An UFA this summer, Bordeleau is an almost no risk/high reward pick up for the Habs. Patrick is a big body who loves to fight. He may not be the undisputed heavyweight champion but he fits the bill for what Bergevin is looking for. Watch his fight against former Hab Brad Staubitz here.

Another player Bergevin should be trying to acquire in my opinion is Ryane Clowe. Clowe at 6 foot 2, 225lbs, is a big strong power forward who is still without a goal this season, but he has hit the 20-goal plateau twice in his NHL career and amassed 60 points just two years ago. Ryane is 30 years old from Newfoundland, and would he not look sick in a Canadiens jersey?

Marc Bergevin sees the need to get big bodies, and also add some more toughness and depth to his team. The Habs were beaten badly by the Leafs on home ice February 9, while the Bruins were up to their gooning ways just last Sunday night in Boston but our Habs came out with 2 points. As Bryen pointed out previously, the Habs need an “anti-bully” guy to stand up for the smaller guys on the team like Gionta, Desharnais and Gallagher. How long before Milan Lucic decides to take a run at Carey Price? What if Zdeno Chara takes exception to Brendan Gallagher crashing the net and decides to beat him to a pulp? I’m not saying Bergevin should go out and acquire every heavyweight in the NHL, all I’m saying is that Prust cannot do it all by himself.

The Habs are most definitely a playoff team, so from here on in, the games only get tougher. Playoff hockey is no walk in the park. Championships are won with depth. The Habs have depth, but size and grit will become a huge factor in the playoffs especially if the Flyers, Rangers, Leafs and of course, the Bruins all make it. If the playoffs started today, the Habs would be playing the Rangers in the first round. Are we ready for the big dance with the roster we have?

Again, I’m not saying the Habs are doomed without a heavyweight, but there is an obvious need for size and toughness. Anyone who says the Habs can beat the Bruins in the playoffs are clearly oblivious to the fact that the Bruins are filled with goons. Prust cannot fight Chara, Lucic, Thornton, Boychuck, Mcquaid, Campbell, Marchand and Kelly all by himself. There is a huge need to add some bigger fighters to our team.

Let me know what you think, leave a reply or tweet me @Di_Stefano45

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2 Responses to Beating the Goons

  1. Couldn’t agree with you more. What is wrong with a heavyweight on the fourth line to keep Boston’s and Toronto’s idiots in check? I wouldn’t cost much and he could dress whenever facing the bigger more physical teams. It was sickening when Weber was put in the lineup as a fourth line winger. Only in Montreal under Gauthier and Gainey. People might not like it but when Laraque was in the lineup Boston didn’t pull their crap. Unfortunately that experiment didn’t work out very well for Montreal. The reality is that not many players in the league can handle Chara or Lucic and these guys are regulars not goons and we all know that the goons will ride the pine during the playoffs. But most of the goon crap doesn’t happen during the playoffs, teams can’t afford to be stupid. If I was Bergevin, I would have the biggest, toughest SOB dressed against Boston and tell him to go after Chara and Lucic all night. But we all know Lucic picks his spots, like he did against Laraque. Funny how he would fight Komisarek but not Laraque. Bruin’s fans will tell you that it’s not an even trade off but there is always a time and place. Lucic picks his spots! In a nutshell, Montreal has some some middleweights but no heavyweights, so at least one would be nice. Having said that, how can you argue with their record and success and the reality is that few teams can beat Boston in a backstreet brawl. Maybe Buffalo, but look what all the changes did for them.

    Cary Thompson March 14, 2013 at 12:02 am Reply
  2. Thank You Cary, I Believe Bergevin will be adding a bigger body soon for that exact purpose

    Colton March 14, 2013 at 5:56 am Reply

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