Category archive: Montreal Canadiens
There's a little bit of roster envy going on among NHL general managers right now. The reigning champ Los Angeles Kings' makeup of a big, heavy and fast team is clicking again, and as teams are eliminated, they're realizing the necessity of playing that way in today's NHL postseason.
The Kings forwards feature 6-foot-4 Jeff Carter, 6-4 Dwight King, 6-3 Anze Kopitar, 6-3 Jordan Nolan and 6-5 Dustin Penner, among others. Dustin Brown is only 6-foot but plays such a physical game during the playoffs that it doesn't matter. His style certainly is heavy.
And now other teams are playing catch-up.
"When I took this job, we decided on a style of play that resulted in great success. Clearly the landscape has changed, and we have to address those changes moving forward," said Canucks GM Mike Gillis during his season-ending press conference. "It's quite clear the league is going in a direction that we have to recognize and adapt to. It doesn't just happen in one playoff series."
Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin echoed the thoughts of his colleague in Vancouver after Montreal was knocked out by the Senators, although he suggested the need for more balance.
"You can't have all big guys; you can't win with all small guys," he said. "Character comes into play. I don't care how big you are, if you have no character you're not going to succeed."
The problem for teams looking for speed and size is twofold. It's a rare commodity, and there's an entire league on the prowl for it.
"There's 29 other teams that want to be big, fast and strong," Bergevin said. "That's easier said than done."
Said Gillis: "When every team is seeking the same thing, it's hard to do."
So where do teams find that size for next season?
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