CH is for Chemistry...we are not a team of one player, we are a team of many players...many players who seem to believe in each other. Chemistry, right now, seems to be our biggest asset, and it was kept at the deadline.
I sided with Bob Gainey at 3PM and I'm glad I can do it again tonight. I would have loved to get Hossa but if there is one GM in the league that we don't have to question its Gainey.
With Gainey you can be sure that he explored every avenue and thought about it long and hard, the man knows what he did and I think he did right. Look at the game tonight, the players were so happy to be with each other and the chemistry on the ice was evident. Give time to Grabs to get settled, expect Ryder to get back on the top line if this re-newed confidence grows, and Sergei will drop w/ Grabs and Latendresse (this is a line where #84 can actually do something with his size)...
This gives us 4 complete attacking lines;
Kovy, Pleks, Andrei - This is our big line, it has been shut down recently, so we need secondary scoring.
Higs, Koivu, Ryder - On the PPlay tonight this line clicked and brought back visions of last season. If this line can start producing now, everyone would forget about the awkward start to the season and would give us the very much needed secondary scoring.
Sergei, Grabs, Lats - This would be our energy line, you have speed and grit w/ Sergei, size and decent finishing w/ Lats and Grabs is just a VERY complete player (I'm very happy we didn't let him go). Yes this line may get caught in transition coming out of the D-zone, and may sometimes get burned for the offensive-mindedness, but this line is meant to boost the guys on the bench as they see the youngsters getting into it.
Begin, Laps, Streit - This is our checking line, we know Begin CAN throw the body, and we know Lapierre CAN get feisty, and we know Streit is so versatile...this line can go up against 2nd or 3rd line opponents and play a good cycle deep, keep opponents off the scoreboard and get some ugly goals...if they don't perform we'll have the always hungry, Dandenault and Kostopoulos to bring in energy to the next game and Smolinski for.......... well he's useless, maybe they need a centreman in Hamilton
On defense we're fine as long as Brisebois stays "rayez de la formation" and everyone stays healthy. But Carbo...if you're reading this...say someone gets injured...play Streit or Dandenault on D before going to Breezer...PLEASE!!!
In nets...Price knows it, even though he won't say it, he is the number one man, this season, next season and for many more to come. And for the complainers...what did Huet do this season? He didn't steal one game all season, he may have even lost some for us. He may be a loss in the locker room but he isn't one on the ice. Price knows what he has to do and he is great under pressure, history shows us that, this is another level of pressure and I think he will handle it well. Most importantly, the guys in front of him have confidence in him, as they should, and that really does make all the difference.
This is our team going into the playoffs, I do believe that we are serious, I do believe that we are for real, however there is still one element missing, but don't kid yourself, that element IS NOT Marian Hossa.