Well, there’s one worry the Habs won’t have to worry about any more. Scott Gomez is gone. He’s been told to go home. Fired, in effect. As GM Marc Bergevin said in a press conference this morning, “We felt this was the best decision for the good of the team.” Once Bergevin got a look at the final draft of the new collective bargaining agreement on Saturday, the writing was on the wall for Gomez, the new CBA doesn’t let teams buy out injured players. Gomez finished off last season out of the lineup with concussion, and this year, while playing with the Alaska Aces of the ECHL, he’s been sitting out games with suspected groin problems. During the Habs physicals, the doctors must have discovered the “suspected” problem was not merely “suspected”but real, and more than likely, would occur again. Thus putting the Habs in the precarious position of paying Gomez his $5.5 million salary this year, taking a cap hit of $7.3 million, prorated, and then not being able to buy him out if he gets injured. A chance the Habs were not willing to take. Solution: “Thank you Scott, take the rest of the year off.”
One worry the Habs still have to worry about is getting P.K. Subban signed. Training camp started today and P.K. was supposed to have been signed by then. Talks, as they say, are ongoing.
The other Habs who weren’t skating were Tomas Plekanec, who suffered bruised ribs playing in the Czech League, Petteri Nokelainen, still out with a back injury suffered last season, and Mike Commodore, who is in on a professional tryout contract.
With Gomez gone and a forward spot now open, that leaves the Habs first round pick Alex Galchenyuk with a good chance of making the squad for this Saturday’s opening game against the Leafs.