All Tom Kostopoulos Has To Do Is Just Keep Proving People Wrong.

If you had a team made up of only players like Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux, Guy Lafleur, and Mike Bossy, with the same type of all-stars on defence and in goal, you wouldn’t win every game. You probably wouldn’t win the Stanley Cup. All you’d be is a fancy team that’s missing something.

 You wouldn’t have the type of players who battle in corners, who scrap to protect, who check other teams’ best lines, and who add colour and blue collar work ethic and dedication and the willingness to overcome odds that they’ve been overcoming for years.

 That’s why every good team needs the plumbers. And that’s why Tom Kostopoulos is not only one of my favourite Habs, but also a key ingredient on the club.

 This is a guy who was buried in the minors, had minor success with Pittsburgh and Los Angeles, and by all accounts, was going to be just another player in a long line of players who play a few years in the bigs and then become roofers and car salesmen.

 But Kostopoulos somehow made his way into the Montreal Canadiens lineup as a free agent a year ago, and he’s fit like a glove. He’s not a star, just a fourth-liner who sometimes replaces others on other lines. He’s a grinder, a sometimes-goal scorer, a guy who defends his teammates although he’s not huge (6′ 200 lbs.), a guy who gets his nose dirty, and in his own little way, is just as important as any player on the Habs.

 I remember the reactions on Habs forums when he was signed. Krustyopoulos they called him. What was Bob Gainey thinking, they cried. Fire Gainey. Imagine, signing a minor leaguer when there were good NHL’ers to be had.

 Early in last year’s season, a Quebec TV show called 110% was aired, with hockey people like Michel Bergeron and Jean Perron, and another named Michel Beaudry, and talk started about how the Habs should be playing their French Canadian players more, like Steve Begin, and forget about Kostopoulos, who’s from Mississauga, Ontario.

Beaudry, on live TV, and to the chuckles of the others, called him Kostfuckupoulos. 

 Not only did Kostopoulos prove Beaudry wrong with his great play on the ice, but Beaudry was fired from his TV show. 

 Bob Gainey, as usual, knew what he was doing when he signed this guy. Tom Kostopoulos would help any team in the league.

He helped the Habs last year with his character, grit, the way he played hurt, and the way he went up against anybody at any time. 

 And this year, he’s going to help them go a long way.

9 thoughts on “All Tom Kostopoulos Has To Do Is Just Keep Proving People Wrong.”

  1. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not an expert on hockey. The Quebec TV show you mentioned, where the “hockey people” were advocating playing a specific lingual group more tells me they may know less about hockey than they purport to.

    Dennis: Dec 17 is Trevor Linden day. #16 is heading to it’s rightful place, the rafters at venerable GM place. Mark it on your calendar.

  2. I was happy when Bob made that signing…. I took the time to at least view some of Tom K on Youtube to get a feeling who he was…. I was happy at what I found. Some grit.

    He’s been one of my favorite Habs also…. he plays for his team and his teammates. He doesn’t back down and you always get pure hustle.

    Lot’s of people have questioned Gainey in the last few years….. And like Kostopoulos, he’s proved many of these critics wrong. I have faith in Gainey. He built a solid team in Dallas… And he’s done an amazing job in Montreal with all the crap (like some media crap) that goes with hockey in that city.

    Go Habs!

  3. You forgot to mention that PJ Stock was there on the show that night, grinning and laughing along with Beaudry. It’s only when the shit hit the fans that Stock started saying that he was shocked (shocked!) when Beaudry used the line.
    Nice to see that Kostopoulos will most likely have a longer career than him.
    As for Linden’s sweater being hung form the rafters, is it okay to wish that he be wearing it at the same time?

  4. We here at Islanders Beat dont need any Froggies telling us about hockey. When have You won something recently.

  5. Pfft. Who needs a team of superstars? If I wanted superstars I’d be a Rangers fan. I’m so tired of the free-agency whining…

    TK’s great though. I love the guy on the team and I hope he stays, even if it means he’ll be on rotation. His line was pretty damn good in the playoffs too. All those naysayers and annoying “fans” that rag on Gainey when he signs guys like TK or keeps hard working bowling balls like Bouillon… well, go ride someone elses bandwangon. That’s what I say!

  6. Right on buddy! Tom Kostopoulos has been the most consistent player on the team. Always doing his job! The french media are racist b#@$?$#! Keep going TK!

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