How Much Does Chemistry Cost in the NHL?

Photo: John Mahoney, Montreal Gazette


How much does chemistry cost in the NHL?


As you all know, you can have top players out on the ice but if they do not have any chemistry, you will not get results. With anywhere from $7.5 to $9.5 million available depending the rosterand IR, the Montreal Canadiens may have to look back and see the errors they committed over the off-season. Let’s start with Mr. Radulov. Was $6 million too greedy for the talented forward? On his own maybe, but ask Max how much it has cost him in his game. The player who bordered on 40 goals the last couple of seasons cannot find the back of the net. Why? No perfectly timed passes from his linemates; one who could read the play and lazer a pass right on the tape. That’s sort of like chemistry, eh? So now if you had two talents up front with Patches, the Habs could have a lethal front line of Drouin, Patches and Radulov. $6 Million.. that’s the cost of chemistry. Note that Radulov has only 32 points in 41 games in Dallas compared to Montreal’s current leader in points, Alex Galchenyuk, with 22. However, these are things that make you wonder what is going on upstairs in the front office. Because Hemsky was the solution, right? Noted that he was a low risk contract but, yeesh.


Now let’s talk about the better defensive core Bergevin claims to have this year… Where is it? Still waiting along side Carey Price for it to show up. There once was a General named Markov who used to patrol the blueline and even though he may have lost a step or two, he could get the puck out of his own end which seems to be a chore every night now. He had one of the best hockey minds in the NHL and could read plays better than Justin Trudeau could ruin a budget in a month. Was what he was asking for too much? Again on his own maybe yes, but in a team setting he was the quarterback of the power play and making magic happen because he had chemistry with Pacioretty and the rest of his teammates. He put up big minutes every night and he did not accept failure. He came back from knee injuries that should have ended his career long ago, which shows you the dedication and mindset of this elite player. He was a mentor to the young defencemen and a leader when called upon. So what is his chemistry worth? Two years at $6 million each season? Yes, as a team player but not individually. I don’t think you can buy what he brings to the table. Was Mark Streit the answer? Um, nope… sorry Bergy, you’re 0/2 on that one. So now what? If there’s any truth to Markov having an out-clause, pick up the phone and bring him home! You want playoffs in Montreal, you better start there. As for up front, the Canadiens need to do their homework and find someone who can reignite the captain and put the team on track again. No chance that Dallas will give up Radulov after handing out his current deal with the team, therefore, the Habs will have to look elsewhere and they have a few assets they could move. This may not be the answer to all their problems but you cannot fix your team completely from the draft or free agency alone. Trades will have to be incorporated.


From where I sit as a life long fan, something needs to change now and Geoff Molson needs to give that directive. No more 4th line roster plugs, just the proper players for the needs of the team. It’s often said Marc Bergevin is one of the most active GM’s in the NHL but he seems to start with “Who can I get from your 4th line? My ship is sinking again and I need a filler. ” The Habs need a cup, it’s been far too long and that should be their main objective. Not the constant goal of “just make the playoffs and see what happens.”

Remember Mr. Molson, you sell a lot more beer when your team goes far in the playoffs. So if Bergevin isn’t the one for the job, it’s time to get someone who can and bring the chemistry and needs of the team to Montreal.


Go Habs Go!!

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2 Responses to How Much Does Chemistry Cost in the NHL?

  1. As much as your article might be right on the money, we were not a cup contender with the old D and Radulov. We would have been another pretender again and would not get enough good draft picks AGAIN. With the added cap space and hopefully the farm sale we can get 6-8 picks in the first couple rounds. The only way to get enough talent (In the cap era) is to have talented players from the first couple of rounds before they get the big money and you have to start letting some go. So “here’s to the farm sale and the draft” let’s not continue to be a mid range team and never be able to draft high and to ever be a real contender.

    Wayne McCrae January 3, 2018 at 11:17 pm Reply
  2. I didn’t think Bergevin was doing a good job before the big trade, I have the total belief he’s not going to do a better job now, come on! If he had some balls (meaning “couilles”, in French) he would offer his resignation, admitting his greats errors, but he never will.
    He will continue to totally ruin this team… Except somehow winning the lottery, they will probably F… This year too…

    Cristian Moldovan January 4, 2018 at 2:21 am Reply

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