Rabid Habs

Brown: Drouin Helps Fill a Huge Need for the Habs

My good friend and I were chatting away earlier this morning about our beloved Canadiens. Our favourite pastime is bashing on Marc Bergevin when he continuously fails to address the team’s offensive needs. It came to the point when we formulated trade proposals for players like, Ilya Kovalchuk, John Tavares, Claude Giroux, Nikita Kucherov, Alex Ovechkin and Matt Duchene. Talking about our wishes is refreshing until you come back to that dark, murky place called reality where Montreal has yet to pull the strings. Well my friends, today has changed for the better.

After 4 years of trading with no big offensive names coming our way, Bergevin finally pulled off the improbable. Although it took one of our best defensive prospects since P.K. Subban, all of that info can be erased as we have Jonathan Drouin in the threshold.

This is a major 1-for-1 trade. On one hand, we traded a future #1 defender who was meant to replace Andrei Markov. On the other hand, we received a scoring threat who can help us win now. I am not certain who wins this trade outright. Nevertheless, I may be leaning towards the Drouin trail knowing that Montreal is desperate for goals. Adding Drouin helps that.

Drouin’s induction to the line up gives us a shiny new toy to play around with in hopes of solidifying our offensive lines. That is a key ingredient to a cup contender; a balanced team overall. Sure, we already have the best netminder in the world. We also hoard plenty of quality defenders. Unfortunately, the saying is true. If you can’t score, you can’t win. That was clearly evident in their last playoff bout last year against the Rangers, where goals were hard to come by and the Habs’ best players came to a screeching halt in terms of offensive production (I’m looking at you Max Pacioretty and Alex Galchenyuk). The end result was Montreal mustering up a dreadful 11 goals in the span of 6 games. Hopefully with Drouin in the mix, this won’t happen again.

Drouin gives us the ability to give certain players less responsibilites. The Canadiens struggled with this last year, as they pushed certain players high up the line up. Sure, Paul Byron has been a pleasant surprise, lighting the lamp on 22 occasions. We also cannot forget about Arturri Lehkonen. In his first NHL season, the flying finn surprised many by scoring 18 goals. Nonetheless, these particular players had to much of a responsibility to handle and it clearly showed in the playoffs.

Andrew Berkshire explains best in a simple diagram, and the article is just as insightful on the type of player the Canadiens acquired.

With Drouin coming into the fold, the line combinations are tantalizing.

I carefully crafted a top 9 that would give this team a balanced attack




*NOTE* There has been rumblings that Alex Galchenyuk will get traded sooner rather than later, so consider this lineup to be impermanent.

This is what the definition of balanced is. A scary 1st line who can produce goals in the blink of an eye. A second line who is not to far off and can get hot in any given moment and a 3rd line that perfectly compliments the teams 1st and 2nd attacking lines.

The most important thing to take away from this trade is offense, and a lot of it. That is this team’s most urgent need. Bergevin finally got Montreal Canadiens fans back on his side since the Subban-Weber swap a year ago. I can sense that more signinficant bodies are on the way out. Can he capitalize on that? Or will he disappoint? This will be one of the most exciting summers in a long while.


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