Friday, July 15, 2011
Habs Rumour Update: Gomez Still In Play?
As we've mentioned before, we here at Your Canadiens still consider this one highly unlikely. But our favourite controversial Tweeter, @incarceratedbob, is at it again.
If there is one area where ibob seems to have legit sources, it's within the New York area teams. So when he is now specifically indicating that Scott Gomez trade talks are heating back up with the New York Islanders, it is at least worth considering.
Today on Twitter ibob claimed that Gomez's No Trade Clause allowed him to veto a deal that would have sent him from Montreal to Long Island on draft weekend. He states it's possible that Garth Snow himself has since reached out to Gomez in an effort to woo him to change his mind, leading to renewed talks with Pierre Gauthier this week.
What might a possible Islanders - Canadiens swap look like? ibob believes the deal has the Canadiens sweetening the pot with a first round draft pick or NHL-ready defenseman for the Islanders to take Gomez's contract off the team's hands. Where it becomes difficult is that one would imagine Gauthier will want to replace Gomez with an experienced NHL top 6 center in the short term while David Desharnais and Lars Eller continue to develop, and this isn't something the Islanders are loaded with. There has been talk about the team moving young forward Josh Bailey, who would add additional size to the Habs at the forward position, but isn't that established presence they would be looking for.
With the UFA market now almost bare, Gomez would have to be replaced via trade. Unlikely when one considers Gauthier's reminder that this team is still newly assembled and still needs to gel together before major changes are executed. Plus, per this rumour, Gauthier would be giving up other assets just to rid himself of Gomez (perhaps a Yannick Weber or Josh Gorges), creating a new hole on the team, and also limiting tradeable pieces that could be sent away for that replacement center.
All in all, the deal makes little sense at this time, but I guess you never know. Gomez is likely to be given another chance here, and I could see him having a bounce back year (hard to do much worse). Next summer, as his actual salary declines for the remainder of his contract, Gomez may become a more marketable asset for Gauthier and the Canadiens.