Updates on the Canucks, Canadiens and Flames.

The possibility Roberto Luongo remains with the Canucks, the Canadiens head scout denies his team has snubbed the QMJHL, and the latest on the Flames search for a new coach.


Could this tandem remain intact next season?

VANCOUVER PROVINCE: Jason Botchford recently reported Canucks GM Mike Gillis wouldn’t rule out the possibility of his current goalie tandem (Roberto Luongo and Cory Schneider) returning next season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Gillis will  re-sign Schneider, and shop around to gauge interest in Luongo, but if it’s tepid or there’s no deal to be had this summer, one shouldn’t rule out the possibility of Luongo and Schneider returning for another season. 

RDS.CA: Trevor Timmons, Montreal Canadiens director of player evaluation and development, denied the team in the recent past has snubbed the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, saying they’ve always followed the league closely. New GM Marc Bergevin admitted he’d like to see the Canadiens select more players from the QMJHL.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s not as though the Habs have “snubbed” the “Q”, but rather they’ve gone with the players their scouting department believe are the best available ones to select. Sometimes they get it right, sometimes they get it wrong. In recent years they’ve put more focus upon the American collegiate ranks, but since 2002, they’ve drafted 16 players from the “Q”, including Maxim Lapierre and Guillaume Latendresse, and their first round pick last season was Nathan Beaulieu of the Saint John Sea Dogs.

CALGARY HERALD: Vicki Hall believes the Flames front office are justified not to rush in selecting a new head coach.


  1. I wonder if the Habs would do better to focus on local talent at the pro scouting level. Once a player has had a chance to adjust to the NHL he may be better ready to deal with the Montreal pressure than when coming straight from Junior. Someone like Parenteau may do better in Montreal now than if he were drafted by the team. It would be nice to have a couple of local players to deal with the French media, but also seriously contribute so we don’t have to hold on to someone like Darche.

    • Darche is very good at what he does, and that is play defense. He is not flashy but a very good shutdown guy and is one of those unsumg people teams need.

      Bergevin did say in his opening 1st interview that part of the changes he was going to make was to add a scout for the Q. i think they have one guy covering that league and that is contributing to the drop in Q selected players over the years. Montreal will still stick to drafting the best player available but hopefully will have a better idea of exactly who those players are.

      • And if they would play him on the 4th line and pay him a few cents more than league minimum, I’m all over keeping him. He does not belong on the PP or anywhere near Plekanec. For some reason, both Martin and Cunneyworth missed that.

  2. Its the beginning of the off season. They don’t have to justify not hiring a coach right away. They have all summer to interview and consider options.

  3. Of course Canucks GM Mike Gillis says that keeping both goalies is a possibility, because if he didn’t say that it would weaken his bargaining position while he shops Luongo around. No one wants to negotiate a trade from a behind the eight ball disadvantage and Gillis wants to get the best return possible.
    Teams can sign Schneider to an offer sheet but there are two factors to consider. If a team signs Schneider to an offer sheet and the Canucks allow him to go, the team that gets him must give something back in the way of player(s) or draft picks. If the Canucks match the offer sheet then it makes for some very bad relations with the team that made he offer for him, which can affect trades and possible deals in the future.

    Montreal, with the new GM renewing his focus on the QMJHL, will never again be accused of ignoring players from Quebec, unless of course Don (The Dinosaur) Cherry decides that he should attack him like he did Burke about not signing players from the southern Ontario leagues.
    NHL scouts make a list of who they believe are the best players available at the draft and prior to the draft all teams do an I depth series of interviews with the draft eligible players so that they can get a look at what makes them tick and how they fit on their teams. That being said, only if the best available player was from Quebec would Montreal draft him, and rightfully so. How would Montreal’s fans like to see a budding superstar at number 5 in the draft order passed over for a number 15 player who’s best redeeming quality was that he was a native of Quebec?
    Teams need to draft the best player possible no matter where he hails from and the only time his birth place should enter into it is if he and the other player were almost identical and it was a virtual tie in talent and attributes.
    I don’t think Kevin Lowe is only looking for Northern Alberta boys when he picks first overall, as he has and will do again this year. Certain sports writers for certain newspapers should be able to dig up better stories than this kind of drivel.

    • @Ahab: Look at the rosters of the last 20 cup winners,you’ll find more players from the OHL than any other league…”Dinosaur Don”,even with the onset of mild senility,has it right…It wasn’t an attack on Burke..it was great advice to a GM who cant seem to fix his team….

  4. Man did AV really handcuff Gillis this off-season. With the Canucks down 3 – 1 all he had to do was start Luongo. As a purely hockey decision I thought it was the right move, but it’s not unheard of for GM’s to stick their noses in, and as much as you want to portray a confident public image, they had to know their odds of coming back were slim, and all they had to do was put Luongo back in, and then they would have had more leverage in dealing Luongo.

    Not that there is no collusion in the NHL, but all the GM’s have to do is refuse to trade for Luongo and his contract, if they cant move him, you know Schneider is only qualifying at one year and then its lottery time(UFA) next summer.

    As far as an offer sheet, the compensation is strictly draft picks and the number is dictated by the amount you sign him for.

    I know its slanderous to many, but there has been a long ongoing impression of the QMHL as a soft D and inflated offense league. That might be part of the reason fewer picks than the other two leagues in general, just not Montreal.

    As far as the Oilers and Lowe, they actually restrict their draft picks to the WHL/OHL/NCAA and sweden/finland…with very few exceptions

  5. The more I look at the Flames coaching situation, and how long they’re taking to hire a coach, the more I think they’re waiting for the Rangers’ season to end so they can interview/hire Mike Sullivan. Maybe they’re also looking to interview Playfair? He never got a fair shake from D. Sutter, and I think he’s a heck of a hockey coach! I really hope they don’t hire Bob Hartley, I think Troy Ward is still a bit inexperienced to take over the big club.

  6. The Oilers will trade their #1 pick overal this year for imediate bang on defense. It’s a smart move in the short-term, but I’d hate to pass on a talent like Yakupov.
    Just my opiinion.

  7. the Canucks have enough Cap room to start the season with Schneider and Luongo as Kesler ($5 million) will be out til at least November so there’s no reason for Gillis to panic and take a deal he’s not completely happy with.

  8. I am wondering if the Canucks would pull off a deal with Edmonton. Sam Gagner for Keith Ballard. Edmonton gets a defencemen and Vancouver gets a second line centre until Kesler returns…. might just work for both teams.

  9. Habs should trade Subban to Edmonton and get their 1st round pick. Even swap.