Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jack Todd at the Montreal Gazette,
The odour of mendacity still clings to the seventh floor of the Bell Centre, where Bergevin claimed he had not been shopping Subban’s considerable talent around the league. Sure, you just whip up a deal for two of the league’s premier defencemen in 48 hours because someone happens to call. If you believe that, have I got a swamp for you.
The whole episode reminded me of one of my favourite country song titles: “Get Your Tongue Outa My Mouth Cause I’m Kissin’ You Goodbye.” Good luck, P.K., and we hope you like country music.
Of course no one is saying so for attribution, but Subban is gone because the club had issues with his character, which is subtly different than character issues. Somehow, Subban had made himself unpopular in the room and in the executive offices through what would appear to be an excess of personality.
Subban was too ebullient. He was too happy after losses. He may have stayed out too late at night. He may have joked that Drew Doughty was going to win the Norris because he had a better supporting cast.
That Subban’s behaviour never included the sort of very real character issues you get with the Raising Kane Brothers (Patrick and Evander) didn’t matter. He was cocky and brash and a little too involved in his own world, so he had to go.
Whatever Subban was like in the room or in the clubs after hours, when the puck dropped, no player on this team battled harder. Subban gave this team all he had every night, so if he wanted to bounce around the room and crow after a loss, he has earned the right. If some of his teammates worked half as hard, there would not have been so many losses to mourn in the proper fashion.
from Stu Cowan of the Montreal Gazette,
Subban’s trade to the Nashville Predators for Shea Weber proved one thing: don’t believe anything Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin says. Bergevin’s nose probably grew a bit when he told reporters at the NHL Entry Draft he wasn’t shopping Subban and simply had to answer the phone when other GMs called. When asked if it was realistic that a trade could happen, the GM said: “I would say no.”
TSN’s Bob McKenzie — the best at what he does — called the GM out when he told Vancouver’s TSN Radio 1040: “The Canadiens obviously don’t want it out there: ‘We’re trying to dump P.K. Subban.’ And in fairness to them they’re not trying to dump P.K. Subban. But I mean they’re not playing tiddlywinks on these calls, either. These are serious calls and they’re entertaining offers on P.K. Subban.”
Maybe Bergevin should buy another fancy new tie with Pinochio figures on it.
You knew Canadiens management had a big problem with Subban last February in Colorado after the defenceman lost control of the puck just inside the Avalanche blue line and fell down. It resulted in an unthreatening three-on-three the other way, but when captain Max Pacioretty gave up on his back-check, Jarome Iginla scored what proved to be the winning goal for the Avalanche.
After the game, coach Michel Therrien pointed the finger directly at Subban for the loss, calling it an “individualistic” play. It didn’t seem to matter to the coach that his captain stopped back-checking.
from Jack Todd at the Montreal Gazette,
It’s time to chill out, take a deep breath, keep things in perspective. After all, we didn’t just vote to leave the EU and hurl an entire continent into chaos.
What happened in Montreal late Wednesday afternoon is that a hockey player was traded. A great hockey player, much loved by a significant portion of the fan base was traded for another great player.
The sad part is why P.K. Subban was traded. He is gone today because the Canadiens always wanted Floyd Patterson — and they got Muhammad Ali. They wanted shy and humble, they got brash and confident. I remember when Subban first showed up at camp as a second-round pick, talking like a cross between Ali and Johnny (the Ordinary Superstar) Rodgers.
Even then, the Canadiens seemed uncomfortable with their young prodigy. And even then, you could sense that, like Ali and Rodgers, Subban was going to walk the walk.
But the Canadiens spent the past six seasons trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. They stuck him with some of the most conservative coaches in the business and when (predictably) it didn’t work out, it was Subban who was gone, not the coach.
In hockey terms, it might work in the short term — but no one wanted to hear that on Wednesday. It was all about P.K. Subban departing for Nashville, not about Shea Weber coming to Montreal.
Habs fans react...
from John Meagher of Hockey Inside/Out,
from Pat Hickey of the Montreal Gazette,
The Canadiens threw P.K. Subban under a Greyhound bus headed to Nashville.
In a deal which lent credence to the rumours that Subban’s larger than life personality was a problem in the Montreal dressing room, the Canadiens traded him to the Nashville Predators Wednesday for defenceman Shea Weber.
“Obviously, it’s a bit surreal but it happened.” Subban said in a conference call.
While Subban was diplomatic enough not to criticize the Canadiens, he hinted that the situation was less than ideal in Montreal.
“I’m just happy to be in a situation where I can excel and feel good about myself coming to the rink,” he said. He went on to say that he felt closer to winning a Stanley Cup in Nashville.
Earlier in the day, he tweeted that it was good to go to a team that wanted him. He said he felt embraced by the Montreal fans from the time he was drafted in 2007, but skirted around his relationship with the team other than to say: “They paid me a lot of money two years ago.”
In one respect, it’s a trade of equals. Both are all-stars and while Subban has won the Norris Trophy as the best defenceman in the NHL, Weber has been a finalist on two occasions.
added 6:35pm, Below, Watch Subban on the trade....
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
So, where to begin with one of the most dramatic half hours in NHL transaction history?
A head-swirling span that saw a swap of two premier defensemen in Shea Weber of the Nashville Predators and P.K. Subban of the Montreal Canadiens, and included the trade of a No. 1 overall draft pick in Taylor Hall to the New Jersey Devils that was followed by the news that Tampa Bay Lightning captain Steven Stamkos re-signed with the team for the next eight years.
Let's just say the collective hockey heart rate is still beating in the red line, even as we begin to consider all that transpired in that magical 30 minutes.
Let's dive in with a swap of Norris Trophy-worthy defenders and marquee players in Weber and Subban, whose names were not once connected in the ever-swirling trade rumor mill leading up to Wednesday's blockbuster but whose swapping of teams will have repercussions in both cities for years to come.
Subban is 27 and under contract through 2021-22 with a $9 million cap hit. So much for Nashville being a small-market team.
added 4:18pm, Montreal release is below...
Nashville, Tenn. (June 27, 2016) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has signed forward Filip Forsberg to a six-year, $36 million contract. Forsberg will make $6 million each season from 2016-17 to 2021-22.
“Filip is among the most skilled, dynamic talents we've ever had in the organization and is an integral part of our success for the next six years and beyond,” Poile said. “While we have already seen his creativity, hockey sense and puck skills, he has yet to reach the peak of his abilities. We have full confidence that he will continue to blossom into one of the top players in the world.
This is just another example of our ownership group’s commitment to the franchise, our fans and the entire community to build a team that can reach our ultimate goal of winning the Stanley Cup.”
Nashville, Tenn. (June 20, 2016) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced Monday that the club has acquired Minnesota’s third-round selection, 76th overall, in the 2016 NHL Draft, from the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for forward Jimmy Vesey.
added 4:39pm, Buffalo release is below...
from Tal Pinchevsky of ESPN,
The San Jose Sharks didn't exorcise all the demons of past playoff disappointments with their 5-0 Game 7 rout of the Nashville Predators on Thursday night. But they did take a big step toward rewriting the history of a franchise long associated with tough luck in the postseason.
Big names such as Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau, Joe Pavelski and Logan Couture still make up the core of this team, combining for four goals and six points in Game 7. But look past those familiar names and you'll find five ways this group is very different from Sharks teams of the recent past.
1. The torch has been passed: The Sharks initiated a philosophical shift in 2014 when stars Thornton and Marleau were stripped of their captain's "C" and alternate captain's "A," respectively. Two years later, Pavelski wears the "C" and Couture wears the "A," a wardrobe change symbolizing the final stage of that shift. And with Pavelski and Couture's performances in these Stanley Cup playoffs, they established themselves as faces of this team.
Check out the handshake line below...
from Joe Rexrode of The Tennessean,
The final tally is seven up, seven down for the Nashville Predators in the 2016 Stanley Cup playoffs, four weeks of roller-coaster hockey to be remembered.
It will be celebrated, too. This team — built by David Poile, coached to relentlessness by Peter Laviolette — did much to shake this franchise’s cutesy, small-market image. There’s no shame in losing to the San Jose Sharks in Thursday’s Game 7 of the Western Conference semifinals.
There has to be some embarrassment in the final performance, though, and the ugly 5-0 final score. And there should be some regret.
That should precede appreciation of the deepest playoff run in franchise history, and any talk of potential runs to come for a young, talented nucleus. And that’s because you just don’t know when the next opportunity like this will come around.
“It’s a difficult feeling when you work so hard to get to this point and you realize you’re one step from something that, we haven’t been there,” said Predators goalie Pekka Rinne, who carried his franchise to the doorstep of its first conference final and was given no chance to open the door.
Game highlights are below...
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
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