Canadiens fans are now following some playoffs
to call their own, as the Hamilton Bulldogs have started their series vs the
jointly-affiliated Rochester Americans. We’ll follow that series
game-by-game, plus our continuing look at the remaining prospects in the CHL
playoffs. In our final thought segment, we’ll examine whether the Sergei
Samsonov buyout is a guarantee as many presume, in the recap.
The Bulldogs have gotten off to a strong start
in the series vs Rochester, and have 2-1 series lead after the first week of the
We’ll change the look a little this week, going
game-by-game in a different way.
3 Stars: 1) Price – HAM 2) Anderson – ROC 3) Stortini –
3 Stars: 1) Ryan – ROC 2) Anderson – ROC 3) Mancari – ROC
3 Stars: 1) Locke – HAM 2) MacArthur – ROC 3) Grabovski –
Corey Locke’s hat trick in Game 3 was
impressive, but was he the high point-getter of the week?
Goals: Locke (3)
Assists: 5 tied with 2
Points: Locke (3)
+/-: Lapierre (+2)
Shots: Locke (11)
PIMS: Stortini (18)
April 24: Rochester @ Hamilton
April 26: Hamilton @ Rochester
April 28: Rochester @ Hamilton (if necessary)
By Jason Brisebois
The CHL playoffs are close to their mid-point now,
as the stretch continues. However, all three of the remaining teams are in
a discouraging situation. All three teams managed to squeak through with a game
7 win in their previous series, but now all three trail by two games in their
respective series. It’s far from over though, as anything can happen in
Medicine Hat vs Calgary
Medicine Hat leads series 2-0
C Ryan White (Calgary)
Calgary managed to beat the Brandon Wheat Kings, winning two straight games to
advance to the semi-finals. They will once again need to overcome a
deficit, however, as they currently trail Medicine Hat two games to none.
White has had a solid campaign so far, notching 6 goals and 7 assists in 15
London vs Plymouth
Plymouth leads series 2-0
RW Sergei Kostitsyn (London)
After losing their 2 game stranglehold on the series, the Knights just managed
to hold off the Greyhounds, winning in game 7. The Knights are now facing
the Plymouth Whalers, but they continue to struggle. They currently trail
the Whalers 2 games to none. Kostitsyn has been one of the top players in
the playoffs so far though, notching 7 goals and 10 assists in 13 games.
Rouyn-Noranda vs Lewiston
Lewiston leads series 2-0
D Mathieu Carle (Rouyn-Noranda)
Rouyn-Noranda is in a similar situation to the one the other two teams face.
Like Calgary and London, they managed to win their previous series in game 7,
but now trail in their current series 2 games to none. A comeback is never
out of the question, though, as these are after all the playoffs. Carle
continues his decent campaign, notching 5 goals and 12 points in 14 games.
Everyone seems to think that it’s a foregone
conclusion that Sergei Samsonov will be bought out the last week of June, and
case closed. But is that even the right way to go? Should they
choose the buyout route, his cap hit for 2007-08 would be $2,350,000, which is
still more than a million less that he made this past season for the seemingly
nothing he brought forth to the table. But is there a cheaper way?
Yes, the old re-entry waiver rule, which if someone claimed him there, the hit
would only be $1,762,500, almost $600,000 less than the buyout option.
However, the buyout is a guaranteed savings, the re-entry part not so much.
Then there’s the idea that I think most fans would like best: Waive him, send
him to Hamilton (or a lower level) and leave him there. The team would
still have to pay his salary, but none of it would count against the cap.
And since Samsonov’s under 35, if he chose not to report and go home, they
wouldn’t have to pay him at all! Or, they could outright keep him,
doubtful, but still an option. The Habs do have a myriad of options with
what to do with Samsonov, and in a case like this, the decision isn’t as simple
as some people have made it out to be.