I'm going to be brief on this, but I think that Mats Sundin did the Canadiens a serious favour by not deciding to come to Montreal.
I'm not talking about last June, or even last August. I'm talking about right now, after the Christmas break, when the team - for better or for worse - is starting to take shape.
While he surely would have helped with the Habs horrid power play and their equally poor faceoff percentage, the arrival of not only Sundin's salary but also his larger-than-life presence would have been a major shake-up in the dressing room. His salary surely would have meant someone was leaving, and who knows what impact his personality would have had in the room.
Guy Carbonneau was pretty clear about his feelings on the matter Friday, saying he didn't think Sundin's drawn out melodrama was fair to the players who were rumoured to be leaving to make room for him under the cap.
Having said that, I believe Carbonneau and Bob Gainey are breathing a huge sigh of relief that Sundin is not heading to Broadway, where he was probably needed most. That team with Sundin, Scott Gomez and Chris Drury down the middle would have become a very difficult out in the playoffs, but that's something the Canadiens won't have to worry about with Sundin out west.
Personally, I'm with a lot of other people on this one that Sundin was a bit of a hypocrite with all his noble talk at the deadline last year about loyalty to the Leafs and not wanting to be a rental player because it cheapens the journey made within a team from training camp onward. I guess that journey is made a little less cheap when you're getting paid $1 million a month.