Give Andrei A Letter

With the goalie issue almost decided, (if Carey Price and Dan Ellis sign pieces of paper), Tomas Plekanec on board, and Sergei Kostitsyn dealt to Nashville, the other linguering story in the wings is the story of the enigma – Andrei Kostitsyn. 

How will he play this year? Is he ready to huff and puff every game, and play like he wants his team to win and can do something about it?

Andrei K. managed 15 goals and 18 assists in 59 games, and then 3 goals and 5 assists in 19 playoff games. These are very mediocre numbers from a guy expected to be an offensive threat.

Underachiever? It’s Andrei Kostitsyn.

But now with brother Sergei, who may well have been a high-maintenance brother, gone to Nashville, maybe Andre can relax and not have to worry about kid brother and become more of one of the boys. It could be the best thing, this saying goodbye to Sergei.

Maybe we’ll see a dynamic season from Andrei. He’s got all the tools – great shot, good skater, fine stickhandler. It’s only his brain that needs to be tweaked.

A good coach is one who can deal with players the way they need to be dealt with. Some need to be yelled at, others need to be patted on the back. Give Andrei Kostitsyn the “A” on his jersey and the few responsibilities that go with it, even though he doesn’t deserve such an honour, and the psychology of it all might put his career back on track.

Give Andrei a letter, and while they’re at it, give someone the captaincy too. I think we all want, and missed, a captain of the Montreal Canadiens.

15 thoughts on “Give Andrei A Letter”

  1. Good article Dennis. I vote for Tomas Pleks, or better still Hal Gill. Markov is another obvious but his injuries last year were too frequent and they hurt even his fans. Yet he found time to play in the Olympics (and failed miserably at that). Would be happy to see Gionta as well. Not many choices. Maybe best choice cold even be Josh Gorges. Unsung hero? Almost.

  2. Mayo, any of those guys could be captain but maybe Cammalleri will be the one. He’s seems to like the cameras and will speak out to his teammates when he feels it necessary. Gorges, Gionta, Markov, Gill, Pleks. Any of them. All I know is, we need a captain, and if a little “A” on A. Kostitsyn’s jersey turns him into a terrific player, then why not? They have to do what they have to do.

  3. I agree with both Mayo and Dennis on their choices.
    I guess I’m favouring Josh Gorges or Brian Gionta as Captains. Both because they are the strong silent types who grind it out and do it in a humble workmanlike manner.
    I especially love Gionta’s ability to score those really important clutch goals. I think he’s way ahead of everyone in that department.
    I also agree with Mayo that Hal Gill would make an excellent Captain. I remember seeing him standing tall next to Carey Price and talking to him in an encouraging manner after he had a really tough game. And he seemed to really lift up his spirits. That’s what a Captain is all about.
    Other than that, I would have to agree with Dennis that Mike Cammalleri is the other natural choice. I remember how he was such a perfect gentleman for the Centenial game against Boston and how he took a real interest in speaking to all the great veteran Canadiens players. You could tell he understands what it really means to wear the big CH on your chest.
    All great choices. And I would be happy with any of them.
    And “A” stands for Andrei so who knows?
    I also wouldn’t mind seeing the A on Metro or Moore because they give 100 per cent almost all the time.

  4. Thanks, Danno. They just really need to get this captaincy thing over with. Everyone’s been there for at least a year now so surely there’s no need to put it off any further. I think I’d make a good captain, from the sidelines. I could sew a “C” on my sports jacket and also be stickboy. Kill two birds with one stone.

  5. Sorry Dennis, but i wholehearedly disagree with give A Kost any letter unless it’s an F. I could imagine what that would do to the team with A. Kost getting an A while Gorges or Cammalleri are without. Not a chance. A letter wont do squat to someone like that. He needs to be handled differently perhaps but i don’t see any assistant captaincy in Kostitsyn’s future.

  6. Geoff, I just thought if it lit a fire under his ass and made the team better, then do it. You are right , though, that others are much more deserving. For Montreal to pick it up a notch, they need their underachievers to start achieving. Andrei’s a main offender of course. But imagine how much better they’d be if he was playing great. It would make a huge difference and show great depth.

  7. Dennis, the captaincy thing has turned out to be something like having a really fine box of chocolates but you can only have just one.

    Which one will it be? There are lots of really fine choices. Good in their own way, but different. That’s a good problem.

    Just don’t pick the chocolate with the drippy cherry centre that oozes out and runs all over your good shirt…

  8. Danno, I love those chocolate ones with the cherry in the middle. But you’re right, you have to be careful with those. The captain has to be the chocolate everybody goes to the diagram in the box to find. Geez, I’m getting hungry.

  9. Dennis, you know I think you rock, but I have to wonder if perhaps the pain meds and/or booze are interfering with your neurotransmitters, cause giving AK anything but a slap upside the head is just some whacked out crazy talk. I agree he has the skills, but frankly, I think he lacks good old fashioned hockey sense. Remember the soft dump during the playoffs that lead to a goal? It was vintage AK, in that he only put in a half-hearted effort, and it got the team burned. He hits like the big winger we need, but that’s all he ever really does consistently, and for that he’s grossly overpaid. The nicest thing I can say about this kid is he’s inconsistent, but really I just think he’s lazy and he fails to anticipate, plan or react appropriate on the ice more often than not.

    Yeah, I want him gone. I’m a bitch who lacks the necessary patience for another player with the lauded almighty potential to pan out. Time to start cleaning house. Take your potential elsewhere. Meanwhile, let’s have some proven players in here please. I hope PG’s taking notes. I should charge him for this shit.

  10. But maybe, Tyg, a letter would change his play and attitude. What if it did? It’s all about the team, don’t forget.

  11. I can see my idea’s not popular. BUT WHAT IF I’M RIGHT? And because my idea’s not popular, I’m going to say make him assistant captain, captain, coach, and anything else he can find the time to do.

  12. Dennis, I applaud your ability to think outside the box, but that doesn’t necessarily equate to outside reality. It might change his attitude, but it’s not going to upgrade his mental faculties, and that’s wherein his problem seems to lie. Then again, WTF do I know? I don’t want him sporting a letter, unless it’s a huge F. A dunce cap would complement it nicely too. Props to Geoff for that. It’s a solid idea.

  13. Sorry Dennis but I have to join the no A for Andrei crowd. Entrusting him as a team leader can only have bad consequences for any followers. Even if you are right, I doubt it will ever happen so you’ll never get the chance to say you told us so.

    My choice for captain would be Cammalleri, with Gionta and Gorges as alternates. Markov doesn’t want the the C, so I say no letter for him. I think Gill would make an excellent interim captain, but I’m worried he’s getting too old and slow to play a regular shift for much longer.

    I might have dreamt it, but I think I read somewhere that Andrei over his career has only played well in December.
    He had 15 goals, 18 assists, 33 points, +1 in 59 games last year;
    11 goals, 9 assists, 20 points, +8 in 18 games between Nov 17 and Dec 28;
    that leaves 4 goals, 9 assists, 13 points, -7 in the other 41 games.

  14. You’re a real hockey gal, Diane. And maybe today some real good stuff is going to happen on the free agent market. Maybe Montreal will surprise us. Anyway, hope you’re enjoying summer but don’t froget your sunscreen.

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