As we all know by now, the Canadiens officially signed veteran free-agent defenceman Patrice Brisebois to a one year contract, likely worth around 700K.
I guess it's a bargain for a guy that could put up 30 points in a full season...and if he could put up another +17 rating, like he did a few years back with the Habs, then it's a good signing nonetheless.
Otherwise, it won't matter if he sucks or not...he's not getting paid the $4.5 million to play "crapily" (is that a word?) like he did in his last season in Montreal and get literally booed out of the city.
Or maybe Bob is just a sympathetic guy who wants to see this vet retire in a Habs uni.
I, for one, would have preferred Gainey to let Brisebois retire, and take a good hard look at some nice young guys down in Hamilton itching to earn a spot on the Canadiens roster next season.
The obvious option is Ryan O'Byrne, who looks to me like a lock to make the Habs' squad...his size and shot being his most useful assets.
Another option, though unlikely, is Mathieu Biron, a former NHLer with the Washington Capitals and now the Bulldogs' main powerplay quarterback.
When I saw him play, along with the rest of the team at the Bell Centre a few months ago.
I was especially impressed with his offensive game, his booming slap shot on the powerplay won't replace Sheldon Souray's...but it would be a pretty nice consolation prize.
Besides them, there isn't much to hope for...besides Jean-Phillipe Cote, who had a cup of coffee with the Canadiens 2 seasons ago, but has fallen way low due to injury and inconsistency since then.
Gainey finally realized the Habs lacked depth on defence, and had little options in Hamilton, and as a result, the 2007 Habs draft class consisted of mainly defencemen, notably top-ranked Ryan McDonagh (1st round) and the big muscular P.K. Subban (2nd round).
The question is: will the presence of the 36-year old Patrice Brisebois force Bob Gainey to potentially cut a promising young player from next year's team in training camp?