Kukla's Korner

The Upper Canadien

Just another Saturday in August

Hurricane on the East Coast, state funeral in Canada. Best wishes to all those hunkered down in Irene’s path, as well as those mourning the loss of Jack Layton.

As for Les Glorieux, it’s August 27th. Six weeks to hockey that means something. My musing for a Saturday morning: the Habs could use one more forward. A second or third line guy, preferably someone who can chip in 15-20 goals, play a little bit of power play, and is responsible defensively. A few names spring to mind off the list of remaining unrestricted free agents. They are, in no particular order:

Cory Stillman

John Madden

JP Dumont

Chris Clark

And, if we’re really on a defensive bent, a guy like Ryan Johnson would look very good as a depth player. Why the extra add? Well, I suspect Andrei Kostitsyn is as good as gone. His comments last month basically suggest he has one foot out the door, and if he gets off to a slow start I could see Mr. Gauthier sending him packing. Why not prepare in advance and have someone who can slot up a line available, rather than waste a second or third round pick on a recent free agent, a la the Dominic Moore trade of two years ago? May as well hold onto the picks if at all possible.

I know what you’re going to say: the Canadiens are already full at forward. But I reiterate, Kostitsyn doesn’t fit. He’s proven to be defensively irresponsible, lacklustre in his effort, and now he’s criticized his coach. How many players like that stick around?

A sidenote: Corey Stillman would look pretty good. Veteran, winner, and a former Erik Cole linemate with whom Mr. Cole had some success.

We’ll see what Mr. Gauthier does. I suspect there is at least one move coming before the season starts.

And, as I’ve had emails regarding hockey pools (it’s still August!), very quickly, my top three Habs for breakout seasons:

PK Subban - I could see him getting 50 points fairly easily.
David Desharnais - This guy sees the ice incredibly well, and he’s a very crafty passer. 50 points is not out of the question if the ice time is there.
Max Pacioretty - He led Habs scorers post-all star break before his injury last year. Providing he bounces back ok, and I think he will, I’d peg him to score 20 goals.

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I agree
Cory Stillman would be a very good fit.

Posted by BlackXinu on 08/27/11 at 07:06 PM ET

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About The Upper Canadien

The Upper Canadien is your one stop shop for all things Montreal Canadiens. Since the summer of 2010, I've been providing Habs related news, notes, and most importantly, opinions. As a blogger, I don't believe it's my job to report the news, it's my privilege to comment on it. You may disagree with what I suggest. In fact, you most likely will. But that's the great part about blogging: it spurs opinion, comment and engages all involved. I've really enjoyed all the debate and commentary from readers thus far and I encourage everyone to respond with ideas on lineups, trades, logos, sweaters, mascots, whatever. The Upper Canadien is a conversation for all hockey fanatics.

I've come to Kukla's Korner with four years of campus radio and three years of sportswriting from my time at Mount Allison University on Canada's East coast. Not only do I not have any professional journalistic training, after five years in the corporate world, I've spent much of the past two years completing an MBA. Business by day, hockey by night, I'm a Canadiens fan through and through. I hope you enjoy reading as much as I do writing.

Questions or comments? theuppercanadien@kuklaskorner.com