All Habs Headlines: Tuesday June 7, 2016

On this day in hockey history 1972 — Hockey Hall of Fame named it’s newest members: Gordie Howe, Jean Beliveau, Bernie Geoffrion, Hap Holmes, Reg “Hooley” Smith and builder Weston Adams.  1976 — Denis Potvin broke Bobby Orr’s eight year lock on the Norris Trophy, when he was named as the NHL’s top defenseman.  1993 — John LeClair scored at 14:37 of OT to give Montreal a 3-2 win at Los Angeles in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals, and an NHL record 10th straight playoff overtime win.
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► The Season for Mocks

  • Many mock drafts are popping up attempting to predict what will happen in the first round of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft on June 24th.
  • NHL writers Mike Morreale and Adam Kimelman are in agreement that the Canadiens will be picking Alexander Nylander, a winger from the Mississauga Steelheads (OHL) with the ninth pick.
  • The 18-year-old had 28 goals and 47 assists for 75 points in 57 games last season.  Nylander is the younger brother of Leafs prospect, William Nylander.
  • The Hockey News predicts that the Canadiens will swap picks with the Edmonton Oilers allowing Montreal to grab London Knights winger Matthew Tkachuk with the fourth overall pick.

► Waive ‘the Rule’ for Muller

  • For far too long there has been an unwritten rule in Montreal that the head coach must speak French. The application of this rule to exclude the best coaches in hockey has unquestionably had a major negative impact on the performance of the Canadiens over the years.
  • RDS reporter Francois Gagnon argues that ‘the rule’ should be set aside for an elite coach like Mike Babcock. Gagnon would add Kirk Muller’s name of coaches who’s coaching qualifications and stature in Montreal should eliminate the artificial barrier.
  • Muller was added as an associate coach after Michel Therrien guided the Canadiens to one of the biggest collapses in franchise history.

► Sekac Signs

  • Former Canadiens winger Jiri Sekac has signed a one-year contract with AK Bars Kazan of the KHL.
  • Sekac had one goals, five assists in 39 games last season with Anaheim, Chicago and Arizona.

► Eller Looking Forward to Muller’s Arrival

  • Lars Eller welcomes the addition of Kirk Muller as an associate coach telling TVA Sports, “I think it’s a good addition to the team. I enjoyed working with him. I know other players feel the same as me. Many of them are happy to see him. It has a lot of experience.”

► 24 More Days

  • Only 24 more days until the Canadiens unencumbered opportunity to deal P.K. Subban is up, which means there’s upwards of three more weeks to come up with rumours, a process that’s to no avail according to one general manager.
  • In a piece for ESPN, an anonymous general manager in the Western Conference noted that he doesn’t believe the Canadiens will be parting ways with their star defenceman in the immediate future.
  • “I don’t think they’ll deal Subban, but I think Bergevin is ready to listen to offers, because why not?” the GM told ESPN.com this past week.
  • The Western Conference GM continued his stream of consciousness, “It would take a huge offer and I don’t think it will happen.”
  • Earlier in the team’s prolonged offseason rumours began to swirl that the Edmonton Oilers were preparing an offer for the former Norris Trophy winner, a deal one journalist speculated would include Taylor Hall and Oscar Klefbom.

► Lucic Staying in the West?

  • As soon as the deal was made that sent Milan Lucic to the Western Conference and to the Los Angeles Kings, the unequivocal reaction was that the team would have a tough time getting him under contract, and here we are now, discussing where he might land come July 1st.
  • Pierre Lebrun of TSN was on the network’s edition of “Insider Trading” this week and spoke about the possibility that Lucic will end up elsewhere come the beginning of the regular season.
  • “I still believe the LA Kings want to sign Milan Lucic and I think Milan Lucic wants to remain a King, but as we get closer to July 1st, Milan Lucic has grown open to the possibility of having to go to market,” said Lebrun.
  • “I think there’s a couple of teams we can count on to make an offer. His hometown Vancouver Canucks would make an offer and so will, I believe, the Edmonton Oilers,” mentioned the insider.
  • Lucic recorded 55 points including 20 goals in 81 games in his first and potentially only season in the Kings organization,

► Jets A Landing Spot For Barrie?

  • It’s practically a given at this juncture that Tyson Barrie’s time in Colorado is over, with a potential landing spot being in a place where another blueliner could be heading the other way.
  • During his “Headlines” segment on CBC’s Hockey Night in Camada intermission, Elliotte Friedman mentioned that the Winnipeg Jets might be a good fit for Barrie.
  • “Tyson Barrie‘s future there is not that certain but I don’t think [the Avalanche] want to trade him until they can add some help. I believe one of the targets is Winnipeg’s Jacob Trouba,” said Friedman.
  • “I’m not saying Winnipeg is going to do it, but I think that’s a player Colorado would like to get its hands on,” he continued.
    Barrie matched his career-high in goals this season with 13 and was four off his career-high in points with 49 in 78 games this season.

► Vendetta Against A Nation?

  • Whether direct anti-Russianism or just a string of events that have led to this point, Russian netminder Andrey Makarov has made an accusation against Sabres GM Tim Murray that he doesn’t like Russian players.
  • In an interview with Russian website Sports-Express, Makarov didn’t pull any punches when speaking about his former general manager, “It is not based on the skill of the players … have you noticed all Russians the organization got rid of? I am most recent.”
  • He went on, “I had a dressing room all to myself so I wouldn’t be with the other players, they told me ‘You’re lucky, you’re like a star,’ but it wasn’t an advantage.”
  • When asked if he enjoyed anything about his time in Buffalo prior to heading overseas to the KHL he answered, “At least I learned how to speak English.”

► Laine Compares Himself To Ovechkin

  • On That’s Hockey with Gino Reda, Patrik Laine gave comparisons for both himself and fellow projected top-two pick Auston Matthews.
  • “Patrik Laine just told me he’d compare Matthews and himself to Toews and Oveckin. Says will take him 5 years to be like Ovie,” Reda shared via his Twitter account.
  • Four out of the top five scouting agencies have Matthews ahead of one of two Finnish snipers available in the top-three, with only McKeen’s Hockey ranking the World Championship MVP first overall.
  • Laine scored 27 goals in 54 games in the Liiga regular and post-season, leading his team to a league championship in the process.

► Parenteau Hoping To Remain A Leaf

  • Pierre-Alexandre Parenteau’s time in Montreal was jaded by ill-use and injuries. However it’s been the complete opposite in Toronto, a place a hopes to return to next season.
  • Parenteau’s agent Allan Walsh spoke with Sportsnet this week to express Parenteau wishes to stay in Toronto for the long haul.
    “Let’s be very clear on this point: P.A. Parenteau loved playing in Toronto. He loved playing for Mike Babcock. He believes in the direction of the organization and where it’s going,” Walsh said.
  • “The only thing he didn’t like was not making the playoffs, and he would love to come back,” Parenteau’s agent continued.
  • Last season the former Colorado Avalanche found the back of the net 20 times, tying his career-high, and recording 41 points, his highest total since 2012-13.

 

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