Archive for the ‘PK Subban’ Category

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By the Rule of Trophy, P.K. Subban of the Montreal Canadiens was the best defenseman in the NHL last season. Subban won the Norris Trophy, which is awarded to the best defenseman. It’s a simple rule to follow.

Based on the way Subban has been deployed late in recent games this season, coach Michel Therrien doesn’t seem to care about that rule I just invented. Instead of seeing Subban as one of the game’s top defensemen, Therrien appears to view Subban as a liability who should be nowhere near close games in the final minutes.

The Norris Trophy is awarded by a group of people that Never Played The Game, so perhaps the opinion that Subban is the best defenseman isn’t shared by Hockey People like Therrien. Maybe Therrien wishes Subban were better, but the feeling that a player always can be better is baseline thinking by coaches and players alike, but it’s important to not let it warp your view of the player.

For instance, you should never let yourself believe Douglas Murray is a better defenseman than P.K. Subban. Read the rest of this entry »

Like at least one other online hockey writer, I didn’t like the process by which the Montreal Canadiens went about signing Pernell Karl Subban through the end of next season. Nothing the Canadiens have done with Subban seem to pay him the respect he deserves as one of the best defencemen in hockey.

While that “one of the best defencemen in hockey” phrase may rile up some people, it’s an unquestionable fact that the Montreal Canadiens are a much better team with Subban on the ice than off of it, and Subban has the ability to do that despite playing tough minutes. He’s flashy and offensive and makes it onto the highlight-reel and is polarizing, but the best hockey players are the ones who also make the invisible plays that leads to the puck spending more time in the opposition’s zone, and by proxy, the opposition’s net.

And I never felt like Montreal really believed what they had here. The comparison to Michael del Zotto, as Adam Gretz so eloquently pointed out over at CBS Eye on Hockey, is laughable. There’s a problem with perception here, that Montreal hasn’t wanted to commit to arguably their best skater after giving term to players like Carey Price, Max Pacioretty and, via UFA, Brandon Prust.

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*I need to preface this post by admitting that it may be filled with bias and hyperbole…that’s right folks, I am a die-hard Habs fan.*

For weeks (and I guess months if you count pre-lockout), I have been agonizing over the game of chicken that was being played between P.K. Subban’s agent Don Meehan and Montreal Canadiens rookie GM Marc Bergevin. I mean it wasn’t bad enough that I was losing sleep or that food had lost all flavour, but as a Habs fan, there was a feeling of dread that occasionally washed over me. A feeling of dread swimming with thoughts of a trade or possibly a full-season holdout.

Even a small and deranged part of my brain prayed for an offer sheet from another team just so we would see an end to this saga.

Well gang we finally have a result, and I gotta say, I’m grinning pretty huge right now.

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Because I hate unanswered headlines, the simple answer is “yes.” Yes it could.

TSN’s Bob McKenzie was discussing possible end-games for the PK Subban/Marc Bergevin contract stand-off tonight during the first period of the Leafs/Penguins game, when he said he figured “trade” to be the most likely outcome of the situation. And with desperate teams panicking about their defense in the early going – Detroit, in particular, comes to mind – who knows what the Habs could get in return. And hey, while I’m mindlessly bandying about teams, Philly could use a little help on the back-end too. Anyway, that’s where we’re at – insiders thinking the PK Subban situation could end poorly.

Woosh. Read the rest of this entry »

Vague headline, but that’s basically where we’re at in terms of real, hard facts on this one (courtesy a translated RDS report). But hey, let’s kick the idea around anyway.

One of the reasons it’s come up, from what I gather, is that the Canadiens think PK and his boisterous, jovial personality would clash with Michel Therrien, the Habs (frequently surly) new bench boss. If true (as was suggested in that RDS piece) this is terrible, stupid reasoning.  Read the rest of this entry »

(Graig Abel, Getty Images)

P.K. Subban has a lot he could be worrying about right now. Still a restricted free agent, his contract negotiations with the Montreal Canadiens have stretched into September with seemingly no resolution in sight. The two sides are reportedly at odds over contract length, with Subban seeking a long-term deal similar to those signed recently by young stars like Jeff Skinner, Taylor Hall, and Jordan Eberle and the Canadiens aiming for a two-year deal similar to the second contracts signed by Carey Price and Max Pacioretty.

Adding to that stress is the potential of the new CBA changing the rules on restricted free agency, which might make it even more imperative that he get a long-term deal done now before those new rules kick in. Of course, that might be some time given the state of the ongoing CBA negotiations between the NHL and NHLPA. Subban might not need to sit out training camp like Drew Doughty did last season while awaiting a contract extension, as training camp might end up cancelled.

Instead of worrying about all of that, however, Subban is focusing his attention on a much more worthwhile endeavour: lending his time and support to a new initiative to equip and pay registration fees for over 1000 young hockey players who might otherwise face difficult financial barriers to playing the game they love.

“I haven’t been worried about it [negotiations] all summer,” said Subban when I spoke to him yesteday. “I’ve been focusing on this program launching and I’m just happy that it’s here now. We can talk about the lockout all we want, but this program really is about the kids that are being locked out of opportunities to participate in hockey because of their financial situation.”

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When Nashville matched that offer sheet for Shea Weber, effectively inking him to a 14-year contract, I had this mental image of Paul Holmgren in his office.

There he is, on Capgeek, scanning the list of un-signed restricted free agents. “Kulikov, Petrecki, Del Zotto… no, these don’t seem like my jam. Wait! Is PK Subban any good?”

Holmgren then called up his top scout to confirm that, yes, PK Subban was real good. “What is his agent’s name?”

I guessed that Holmgren might use some of the funds that he had set aside for Weber to use on Subban, the pernicious face of the Montreal Canadiens. Unlike Weber, Subban is only 23 but, like Weber, the addition would help out a group that lost Matt Carle this summer and is unlikely to see the return of Chris Pronger.

But none of this happened.

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