Now where were we…
Mercifully, the season has ended. Forgive me for nodding off during the last month.
There’s no point in rehashing the season that wasn’t: Mitch Melnick’s blog nails it right on the head.
Let’s focus on the future. Tuesday night’s almost farcical NHL lottery gave the Habs their closest shot at a franchise forward since Lafleur.
The Oilers will definitely pick Nail Yakupov. But then it gets interesting.
Look at the Oilers’ Top Six:
Edmonton could draft a defenceman or #2 centre (Pretty thin after Nugent-Hopkins) and use Yakupov to gain another asset.
Given the Oilers’ plethora of high scoring forwards, the new Habs GM should package their first and Tinordi for Yakupov. That’s probably not enough, but it would get Tambellini’s attention.
– If you’re an Oilers fan, just imagine Ryan Murray and Tinordi as your top 2. Or Grigorenko as a # 2 or # 3 centre.
– If you’re a Habs fan, you get the skill and flamboyance not seen since Kovalev flew his plane away.
Yakupov fits right in with Montreal’s theatrical personality.
In all liklihood however, the Oilers will greedily retain Yakupov’s services and sacrifice one of their current Top Six. My guess is Sam Gagner.
Again, the Habs need to be aggressive. If they are serious about finding a possible replacement winger for Plekanecs/Eller, Magnus Paajarvi would be worth the risk.
A Forsberg, Grigorenko, or Galchenyuk Habs pick would mean the end of Tomas Plekanec.
With Desharnais installed as top C and Eller a Pleks-in-the-waiting, Montreal could procure the services of a rugged scoring winger. Jarome Iginla would fit quite nicely.
Until then, here’s a reminder of why we follow their every move: