The Montreal Canadiens Should Be Bad Next Year And Why That Is Good

Montreal Canadiens, Kent Hughes (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)
Montreal Canadiens, Kent Hughes (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)
(Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images) /

Rebuild Mentality

It is not just the high draft picks that need to hit, but you need to be great at finding a lot of value late in the draft. And the best way to do that is to just accrue a huge amount of draft picks, which rookie General Manager Kent Hughes did a fantastic job of this year.

He has to keep it up though.

Montreal still needs to fill out their farm system. Joel Armia, Jeff Petry and Josh Anderson are all prime examples of players that have to be moved if there is an offer of draft picks and prospects on the table.

Especially Anderson. He played the best of those three by far last season, and has a lot of value. But again, the Canadiens need to look at the future. Anderson is already 28 years old, and plays a really physical game that relies heavily on his footspeed. Those are two attributes that decline really quickly compared to hockey IQ, stickhandling and shooting.

It might just be PTSD from the Bergevin regime, but I am really worried that the drafting of Shane Wright could signal the end of this attempted rebuild. Because Bergevin did not like rebuilds, and seemed to be content in mediocrity and “seeing what happens.”

And that was how we wound up with a bubble team for so many years. Every year, the Canadiens would come down to the wire as to whether they would make the playoffs or not. Or they would be in the basement. Bergevin’s teams had those two options, but late in his term there was no chance in Montreal competing with the big boys.

Call me jaded or whatever you want, but I want more. I want a team that contends for the Stanley Cup year after year. One that is firmly in the playoff picture in February and its seen as a disappointment that they don’t get past the first round, rather than a surprise that they managed it. The only way to do that is to build up more prospects and be bad for another year to try to get another elite talent to add to the prospect pool.

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