Smart, passionate and somewhat biased commentary about the Montreal Canadiens (HABS) from a lifelong fan now living in Toronto (LeafLand).

Meet (I Hope) Your 2012 First Round Pick: Mikhail Grigorenko

Lose lose lose, lose lose lose
All the Habs do is lose lose lose.

Even at home against the hapless Leafs who had to resort to a coaching change to try to salvage their playoff hopes, the Habs couldn’t come up with a win.

No matter, I was rooting for the Leafs on that night.

If you read this blog, I don’t have to tell you why.

The Habs are solidly the 3rd worst team in the NHL right now, ahead (behind) of Edmonton and Columbus. Now the Habs would probably have to lose the rest of their games to finish lower than the Blue Jackets, but they might have a chance at finishing 2nd worst if the Oilers can put a string of wins together.

The consensus around the hockey world is that Nail Yakupov, the Sarnia Sting winger of the Ontario Hockey League, is the “head and shoulders above the rest” Number 1 choice to go first overall in this year’s NHL draft.

Yakupov is a talented, highly skilled Ovechkin-type player who stands at only 5″11 but has a knack for putting the puck in the net.

Mikhail Grigorenko. At 6″3 he’s exactly what the Habs need up the middle. He’s already playing in Quebec City for Patrick Roy’s Remparts. If the team picks him at this year’s draft, could that pave the way for Roy as head coach? Compelling stuff for sure…

By many other accounts, Mikhail Grigorenko — another Russian — will go second. So why am I so confident the Canadiens will nab him? Because the commonly-known word on the street is that the Oilers, who after picking talented forwards in Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins in previous drafts, now need to go after a top defense prospect. And according to TSN’s Bob McKenzie, there’s plenty of options in that regard.

Grigorenko is being compared to Evgeni Malkin: an extremely talented centre with great hands. And at 6″3, just what the Habs have been lacking up front for years. The fact that he’s playing for Patrick Roy’s Quebec Remparts makes him that much more appealing. Ovechkin is faltering, Malkin is leading the league in points and is a strong candidate for the Art Ross trophy this year. And all this without Sidney Crosby. Who would you choose?

You know the P.A. announcer Michel Lecroix would have a field day calling out his name after a Canadiens goal.

But McKenzie puts some interesting twists into the mix. What if Columbus decides to go with Grigorenko instead, because they end up keeping Rick Nash and could finally give the star winger a centreman who can get him the puck? What if Edmonton goes against logic and picks him after Yakupov? What if Montreal Canadiens head of scouting Trevor Timmins doesn’t get his head out of his arse? All important considerations…

Even with Timmins, the Habs would be hard pressed NOT to get a top player this summer who can hopefully make an immediate impact with the team in the coming season. Whoever it ends up being.

But those I’ve talked to like the idea of a Malkin-esque type player on the Canadiens and I too have to agree. Maybe the Habs don’t risk it, and trade up a spot to assure their choice!? Could be a possibility… of the course the lottery might change things.

For now, let the Canadiens continue to lose lose lose and it’ll work itself out in the end.


Olympic Stadium. Concrete. Yes you know, slabs of concrete, falling…AGAIN!!

This is how we can get the money to build a new stadium to get our beloved Expos back: hold a lottery at $20 a ticket, and the winner gets the unique opportunity to push the detonation plunger to implode the Big O. What a sight that would be eh?

Hey if you build a statue of Gary Carter at at the Big O, please make sure there’s no concrete within falling distance.  Thanks.

4 thoughts on “Meet (I Hope) Your 2012 First Round Pick: Mikhail Grigorenko


    Well, I guess the HABS can’t lose them all; beat the lowly Oilers last night. Funny how they were such a good team in the 1980s…Then again, the HABS were similarly that good in the 1970s, part of the 1980s and 1990s, with rare streaks of greatness since. Max Pac is the man to watch for next year, hope he stays put!!


    OMG! The Habs vs. Sabres game is the exact perfect summary and epitome of the HABS season. Try as they may, they can’t win, even if their lives depended on it. The HABS scoring with 3.5 secs left in the game to tie it is unbelievable, but what a let down losing in OT. On a brighter note, Max Pac is nominated for the Masterton!!

  • HabsFanLeafLand

    Totally right! But I give them credit for fighting back and hopefully they can end the season the right way and put it behind them.

    I’m pretty sure Pacioretty is a lock for the Masterton…


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