About last night …

This is why they don’t schedule Stick Night.

It was a great win for your Montreal Canadiens, and maybe dwelling on the officiating is a mug’s game.

But man, that was brutal – and one can only hope that Paul Devorski and Eric Furlatt bumbled their way out of consideration for working the Conference finals.

Shall we enumerate the screw-ups?

• Ruslan Fedotenko tackles P.K. Subban at the Pittsburgh blueline to set up Maxime Talbot’s breakaway goal. No call.

• Sidney Crosby, the most hated man in Montreal, trips Roman Hamrlik during a Pittsburgh power play that was to produce Chris Kunitz’s goal. No call.

• In a replay of the Kyle McClaren hit that KOed Richard Zednik in 2002, Mark Eaton tried to take off Andrei Kostitsyn’s head. No call.

• At the end of the second period, Crosby’s styrofoam stick breaks on a harmless Hal Gill tap. The best hockey player in the world looks beseechingly at the officials, Gill is called and the Canadiens, trailing 2-1, begin the third period on the PK.


Even Don Cherry called the refs out.

Talk about the seventh man, the Canadiens had to cope with Pittsburgh’s seventh and eighth men – an ungainly clone of a Penguin in zebra stripes.

Bring back Kerry Fraser!

Even Chris Lee isn’t this bad.

I mean, seriously … lace up Stevie Wonder and give him a whistle.

(Shout-out to Habber 86 for the Gary Bettman and Crosby Photo Shop)

OK, I’m feeling better now.

But for 40 minutes, 21,273 fans were ready to strangle Devorski and Furlatt with white souvenir towels, many of which showered the ice 11 minutes into the third period after three no-calls in the Pittsburgh zone.

SeriousFan09 posted the night’s best Comment:

To this day, I always think that the Rocket punching a referee should have been the statue we erected at Centennial Plaza, would’ve perfectly captured the city’s feelings about the NHL’s bush league officiating.

Bottom line: the playoffs deserve better.

Credit the character and maturity of the Canadiens. 

After being dinged with unsportsmanlike conduct penalties during the Washington series, the players kept their cool … and, as usual, Jaro Halak kept the Canadiens in the game while they were being outshot 26-9 through two periods.

Finding themselves trailing by only a goal after being utterly dominated for 40 minutes, the Canadiens, Jacques Martin said, “needed our best third period of the year – and we got it.”

Fresh legs might have had something to do with it. Unlike his deployments in previous games, Martin did not shorten his bench unduly. He got quality minutes from all four lines, particularly when the Canadiens did a yeoman job of protecting their lead against the desperate Penguins through the game’s final minutes.

Martin singled out “les joueurs de soutien”, the supporting cast who played solid minutes and contributed goals by Tom Pyatt and Max Lapierre.

Martin also heaped praise on his defensive corps.

“Our blueline has stepped it up,” the coach said, despite missing two Top Four Dmen – Andrei Markov and Jaro Spacek.

Martin singled out Hal Gill and Josh Gorges, mentioning they’ve been matched against top scorers in two playoff series. Their performance, he said, “speaks volumes about their character, determination and commitment to their teammates and the organization.”

And the organization gets at least one more playoff game, Monday night at the Bell Centre.


Did Geoff Molson expect the playoffs to turn into a financial bonanza?

Did Montreal fans expect the bleu-blanc-rouge to be playing hockey this month?

This is sweet.

The darling buds of May are blooming primarily because of Jaro, who was lights-out again in making 33 saves.

But everyone is contributing.

Almost certain to leave Sergei Kostitsyn in Montreal, the Canadiens travel to Pittsburgh as the feel-good story of the playoffs.

They’ve taklen the best shots the two most dangerous teams in the East can throw.

They’ve survived injuries and piss-poor officiating.

To the surprise – and, conspiracy theorists would suggest, disappointment – of the whole dang NHL, the Canadiens are in a best-of-three series.

Amazing … and really fun. 

•  •  •

Save of the Night: Jaro on Crosby at 10:30 of the third period.

Unsung Heroes: Max Lapierre and Pierre Gauthier’s best acquisition, Dominic Moore

Excellent Game: Andrei Kostitsyn, who took a vicious hit and, later, laid a thumper on Kris Letang


  1. 100HABS says:

    “What could be better than to see the Habs and the Bruins, both underdogs, competing in a seven-game series to decide who represents the Eastern Conference in the Stanley Cup Finals?”

    I’ll tell you what could be better: the Habs and Canucks in the Stanley Cup Final.

  2. andrewberkshire says:

    Like Norm said Mike, how many defensive specialists put up 70 points in a year, or 8 points in 11 playoff games (60 point pace over a full season). Comparable players around the league include Patrice Bergeron, Jonathan Toews, Pavel Datsyuk, Mikko Koivu, Travis Zajac, Ryan Kesler and Jordan Staal. I’m not saying Plekanec should get 5 million a year, but that’s not what you said either. You said he was invisible. He’s not, far from it.

  3. Tis Himself says:

    Bettman, does not care in the least. He cut his teeth in the NBA where a cult of personality surrounding one player, i.e. Michael Jordan, was a hugely successful strategy. Given the nature of ice hockey, where players are not involved for the full time of a game, I think this is a very flawed strategy.  You have to promote teams and good stories. Hell, the New York Times sports writers can recognize a good story when they see it and ran a feature on Halak this week. If they can see the merit of the Habs run, why can’t Bettman? He may not realize it, but down here in the States people engaged in hockey soak in the history of the sport. What could be better than to see the Habs and the Bruins, both underdogs, competing in a seven-game series to decide who represents the Eastern Conference in the Stanley Cup Finals?

  4. RetroMikey says:

    As my father said, a hockey player can be replaced anytime, no job is secure jus t like your job.

    And please tell me how much you think Pleks is worth?  Have you pulled out the calculator and budgeted this team and taken into consideration if we sign Halak to a big raise (he deserves every penny ), Bergeron, Moore, for example. Will we have enought to sign Pleks?

    I dunno but when I balance apples and oranges, Plekanec cannot be signed over 3.5M.  That is too much to sign a player especially being unproductive offensively in the playoffs.  He’s on this team to produce on the scoreboard. as well as Gomez and Andre Kostitsyn.

    “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

  5. Norm0770 says:

    Not too many minor leaguers will put up 70 points a season, be a great too way player and one of the best penalty killers on the team.

    Pleks is not just a defensive specialist, he is the whole package, with renewed anti-girlish play this year.

    Could he currently produce more, probably, but it is not like he is playing poorly.

  6. bwoar says:

    Cool another Roky fan!

  7. Just A Guy says:

    Perfect. Either/or is good for me, I just want the players that the habs sign on the same continent Playing in a format that leads to the NHL. Havign said that, given how much the habs have taken from Hamilton this year, I would hope he ends up playing for Guy Boucher next season.

  8. Hammer says:

    Wonderful post!!!

  9. dhenry1234 says:

    I agree. Thats an excellent way to put it. I definitely believe that Laps Bleeds Bleu Blanc et rouge

  10. RetroMikey says:

    So being a defensive specialist like Plekanec is worth a hefty raise?  There are many minor leaguers in the AHL that are defensive forwards that you can sign and pay cheap.

    How many defensive specialists do you know that are being paid over 5 Million a year in the NHL?  

    We got enough defensive forwards on this team, we need offense and one to step it up is Plekanec!

    “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

  11. phillyhab says:

    I’ve been ready to go off-the-grid renegade lunatic after some of
    these nights when the refs tilt the ice, but I’ve NEVER heard Boone say
    a nasty thing about it other than “the Commentariat” doesn’t like it,
    or it was suspect; sometimes a mention in an “about last night…”

    can’t say this is the worst called game I’ve seen, and maybe that’s
    because I don’t know the rules very well: I was pretty sure Maxime
    Talbot put the puck in with his foot; pushing of the back right foot
    and guiding with his left — not a “kicking” motion technically, but if
    the rule isn’t to stop goals like that…

    Gionta’s boarding was
    far less suspect then Begin’s boarding in the Flyers series,  the
    tripping on PK was more of a maybe then say the high-stick on Koivu,
    etc.  The tons of interference calls missed in the Washington series — far worse than what Malkin was put in for.

    It great that we overcame it tonight, and a few other games this run I can’t remember the number, but what happens when we can’t? 



    A lot of folks have been riding players that, to them, appear “invisible” — Andrei Kostitsyn, Tomas Plekanec, Lapierre (until tonight), Moore at times, Gomez at times, etc. — if they’re not on the scoresheet.  I don’t want to tell you how to watch or enjoy hockey, but there is some pretty great forechecking and defensive play these players have been doing — AK and Pleks the last two nights in particular — that have been just awesome. I’ve also got accustomed to Pleks lighting it up in the Wash series and am always hoping AK explodes like he did in Game 2, but I’m not going to knock the effort these players have put forth in this series because they’re not getting the bounces… yet.



  12. andrewberkshire says:

    I just hope this holds out! 10 more wins boys!

  13. Tis Himself says:

    Watching Hal Gill’s post-game interview on Versus, these guys give a $#!t and that’s what makes it easier for me to.

  14. 100HABS says:


    I’m looking for a means to bombard the NHL
    with complaints about the officiating. In a very quick check, I have no
    phone number of e-mail, but there is this form on their site:


    they have a Facebook site where we can bitch:


    make sure they know we’re angry. I want Bettman’s personal e-mail.

  15. Tis Himself says:

    True, if the heart gives out, nothing else matters!

  16. SeriousFan09 says:

    Quality technical work.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  17. andrewberkshire says:

    Agreed about keeping them focused. I think that’s the biggest reason we were able to come back tonight. In the second period it looked like the team was rattled a bit, but we came out in the third on a mission, ignoring the blatant cheating by the zebras.

  18. SeriousFan09 says:

    That was about Avtsin’s playing rights, originally the Quebec Ramparts had his CHL playing rights but the Juniors traded for him. It  means if he comes over next season, he may end up in the QMJHL, but depending upon transfer agreements and exceptions, he may be able to sign a deal with the Canadiens and jump right to the AHL.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  19. likehoy says:

    failure in epic proportions

    – What if Jaro Halak’s hand was indeed shaking? What if you took the CHOKE out of Ovechkin? — History Will Be Made

  20. Chuck says:



    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  21. likehoy says:

    great way of putting it. but don’t forget the size of the HEART that the body already has ;).

    – What if Jaro Halak’s hand was indeed shaking? What if you took the CHOKE out of Ovechkin? — History Will Be Made1

  22. Just A Guy says:

    Call me crazy, but I could sworn I heard a report on the team 990 that the montreal juniors had either interest or had signed him for next season. http://thefranchise.ca/juniors/montreal-juniors-acquire-alexander-avtsin.html

    I found that real quick, but I really like the idea of at least one of the habs over-seas drafts coming across the pond to play here.

  23. habmanj says:

    Amazing … and really fun.

    True dat Mr. Boone!  True dat!

  24. Tis Himself says:

    The real question is has Gainey left us with a skeleton that we can use to hang some organs and flesh on going forward? That is the real question in my mind’s eye.

  25. Tis Himself says:

    PK has to go “top rope” on these bastards!


    “The greater the odds, the greater the glory.”  George Armstrong Custer

  26. 11habs11 says:

    I was gonna mention on here early how invisible Pleks was tonight. Very disappointing, but I noticed he did make a very smart play with 10 secs left in the game, unexpectedly coming up and putting pressure on (Gonchar?) at centre, leaving him with nothing other than playing the puck into Halak, who was able to clear it out to end the game. But if we’re gonna go any further than this round, we definitely need more offense from him.

  27. HardHabits says:

    Nah Plex is laying big minutes, but he’s not as effective as Cammy, Gio and Gomer have been.

  28. andrewberkshire says:

    Sometimes Mike, I wonder if you’re sane. Not everything is about goals and assists, which you should know when you’re saying Gorges should be captain. Plekanec has played unbelievably excellent defensively throughout these playoffs. He was also 9-5 in the faceoff circle tonight, usually facing off against Crosby, who happens to be one of the top 5 faceoff guys in the NHL. He does all the little things right 100% of the time and never quits on a play. He played more than anyone else on the PK tonight as well. Plekanec is to the forwards what Gorges is to the defense.

  29. habsoul says:

    Ghosts in the house?

    Before tonight, Montreal was 13-24 at home in the playoffs since abandoning the Forum in 1996.

    Is it possible that the spirits of Howie Morenz, Rocket, Toe Blake, Doug Harvey, Boom Boom Geoffrion, Jacques Plante, and others are no longer pissed off about the closing of the Forum.

    My theme song for the 2010 playoffs: Psychedelic Shamanistic Texan Roky Erickson and The Aliens – If You Have Ghosts






  30. 24 Cups says:

    Andrew – Dick Duff.

    Trade this guy at your peril.

    Edit:  Make that Richard:-)

  31. Chuck says:

    Details, details…


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  32. Chuck says:

    I watched the game with a wrestling referee tonight. When you make one of THOSE guys say, “WTF!”…

    He was waiting for a steel chair to get thrown onto the ice!



    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  33. BeachHabFan says:

    i think laps strggled with the new faces, changing roles, high expectations, bigger profile. his style is best suited to playoffs, and i believe that moore’s presence (decent size, speed, responsible) has helped as well (leadership/sharing the load). glad to see lapierre playing hard and getting rewarded for it.

  34. light_n_tasty says:

    Cherry loves Subban.  During Coaches Corner in game 1, he berated the Leafs for not drafting him.

  35. SeriousFan09 says:

    Find out I guess, he did play in the KHL so that could give him a professional qualification of some sort, having already played in a professional league.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  36. andrewberkshire says:

    I think you might be right, and that’s why all season I’ve been saying people shouldn’t be giving up on Lapierre. He’s one of those guys that seems to play his best when it’s needed most. Both his goals in the playoffs thus far have been massive.

  37. light_n_tasty says:

    Congratulations!  You have achieved the goal to which all us lowly posters aspire!

  38. 24 Cups says:

    Tis – Short term, yes.  Long term, not so sure.

    I also think we have to give Martin his due.  Hab fans like to ride the teeter-totter when it comes to Martin but he has done the job so far. 

    That’s enough hockey and Drambuie for one night. 

    “Saturday night is alright for fighting….”

  39. Norm0770 says:

    The Habs don’t quit.  The best thing the coaching staff has done is keeping them focused.  In the face of piss poor officiating the players don’t get down, whine or complain in the press after the game.  I thin kthat has been one of the biggest keys:  “worry about us not what we can’t control.”

  40. andrewberkshire says:

    There might be a different standard for Europeans though, Yannick Weber was allowed in the AHL at 19.

  41. likehoy says:

    and who do you suggest covers for our boy pleky if we let him walk or we trade him?

    your boy marcel?

    – What if Jaro Halak’s hand was indeed shaking? What if you took the CHOKE out of Ovechkin? — History Will Be Made

  42. Tis Himself says:

    The Habs must win this series for the good of all sport! The way the officiating was in tonight’s game the NHL is looking more crooked than harness racing or wrestling!

  43. likehoy says:

    i think he bleeds bleu blanc rouge and shows up when it matters. i think he might have had a bit of a miscommunication with jacques martin over his role, and it seems that through his desire to help his team, he’s found his role.

    – What if Jaro Halak’s hand was indeed shaking? What if you took the CHOKE out of Ovechkin? — History Will Be Made

  44. RetroMikey says:

    Plekanec…..the invisible 6 million dollar man in the playoffs, where’s his offensive output???

    He is not worth over 3 Million in my books.  Either he walks or we trade him, a big disappointment so far.

    Glad to see this team finally want little Sergei off this team, I would have let him go last year along with the other party boys we got rid of last year.  Martin is finally getting sick of the little runt.

    And yes, I truly believe Josh Gorges should be named Captain on this team, a true warrior.

    Like I have said, Halak is the real deal, sign him ASAP.



    “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

  45. oldasdirt says:

    Ghosts were spotted walking from Ste.Catherine & Atwater to le Centre Bell .


    Predictions are for gypsies-Toe Blake

  46. Norm0770 says:

    A parallell with this series and Washington is that the Habs how have stayed focused on the games rather than what they can’t control.  No one from the coaches down has done anything to complain about officiating after a game.

    Boudreau complained about officiating and I think it distracted his team or made them feel more entitled, or that they have somehow been wronged.  Blysma complaing tonight may have the same effect.  On top of the fact that the officiating was so clearly in Pittsburgh’s favour.

    Crosby is clearly off his game whining and looking for retribution rather than bearing down and using his immense talent to change the game.

  47. oldasdirt says:

    Wouldn’t Bettman have a nervous breakdown with aHABS/CANUCKS final???11


    Predictions are for gypsies-Toe Blake

  48. Chuck says:

    That’s what I thought, too. And Friedman didn’t come off looking like a dumbass, either.


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  49. SeriousFan09 says:

    Damn, was hoping to go see him play for Hamilton next year, just checked he is 19 so he will likely end up in the Q next year.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  50. andrewberkshire says:

    Hey Steve, why do you think that is? Did it take Lapierre the whole season to recover from his surgery, or has he just willed himself to play better?

  51. Tis Himself says:

    You know, watching tonight’s game on tape delay I’m thinking that Gainey dude might actually have been on to something!

  52. andrewberkshire says:

    I definitely wasn’t relaxed, I had to double take and stop myself from throwing a remote through the tv, but I know what you mean. There seemed to be such a finality to things in the second period, but the team didn’t take note, so they battled back and won.

  53. 24 Cups says:

    Gilbert – Good point. It’s probably the main story of the playoffs for the Habs so far along with the play of Halak.

    I also think that we should be giving more credit to Lapierre. He stunk during the regular season but has really steppped up during the playoffs.

  54. andrewberkshire says:

    I think due to his age if he doesn’t crack the Hab’s lineup he has to play for the Montreal Juniors.

  55. 11habs11 says:

    same here…my heart is usually up in my throat for the full 60 mins, but after the pens 2 goals after the non-calls, i gave up hope and kind of accepted that the refs weren’t gonna let us win…probably the most relaxed 30 mins of hockey i’ve watched since the playoffs started lol, until the comeback began

  56. SPATS says:

    It’s the feel good story of the season. Even Leafs fans are pulling for us. Tonight we gained the respect of the hockey world. Utter class in the face of blatant whining and misofficiating. The Band Wagon will need at least 2 more flat bed trailers  attached to keep everyone on board.

    How sweet would it be to face the Bruins in the next round and sweep them? How sweet would it then be to then face the Blackhawks and run Niemi (did I spell it right?) and then face Huet and open a can of whuppass? All the pieces are coming together folks…. Stay tuned

  57. MikeL says:

    He should give Sergei a call so they can split a return flight.

  58. SeriousFan09 says:

    Excellent news, look forward to his joining the Bulldogs next season, probably not quite ready for NHL action.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  59. G-Man says:

    CHaracter. Habs don’t quit. Gotta love it.

  60. SeriousFan09 says:

    Awesome, I got the Mike Boone Plug :)

    I hope Geoff Molson takes some of that nice playoff revenue cash and sinks it into the scouting department, I’d like the Canadiens to sneak another P.K. Subban out of this year’s draft.

    Halak is just beyond incredible right now, you can feel the momentum work for Montreal every time he denies the Penguins a sure goal, frustrates them to no end and that’s how Washington was won, demoralized and frustrated scorers.



    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  61. MikeL says:

    I’d say there’s two reasons Don stood up for the Habs tonight

    1) It was too blatant to ignore.

    2) He’s hates Sid more than the Habs.

  62. 24 Cups says:

    FHF – You may want to reconsider and go with a Penelope Cruz or Catherine Zeta-Jones tattoo. Hell, I’d take Hal Gill or Jaro Halak over the headmaster. Who would have dreamt that we would beat Pittsburgh without Markov or Spacek in the line-up? Let’s really be honest with each other as Hab fans. Forget the ‘Be True To Your School’ crap. Who thought we would beat Washington and be tied 2-2 with the Cup champs at this stage of the post season?

    White Rabbit.  Feed your head.

  63. yathehabsrule says:

    Even the Russians are interested in the Habs:

    As per a tweet from Yahoo! Puck Daddy’s Dmitri Chesnokov: “According to reports in Russia, Habs prospect Alexander Avtsin set to leave Russia this summer to join Montreal.”



    Ya! The Habs Rule! now on Twitter!

  64. SPATS says:

    We’ve come too far now to settle for less. The boys showed unbelievable class all night and overcame tremendous odds stacked against them. Karma came through for them in the end, how else do you explain Gio’s goal? How sweet would it have been if Jaro scored on the last second clearout, you could see it in his eyes, he was going for the goal!

  65. andrewberkshire says:

    In the second period tonight, I’ll admit that I lost hope. The officiating was garbage, the defense and Halak were doing all they could to keep us in it, but the transition game was breaking down. Pittsburgh looked bigger and stronger in every way, and all the while we were shorthanded 7-5.

    After a blitz to open the 3rd, and Lapierre doing a better wraparound than Latendresse has ever done, I realized once and for all that this team can do anything. With the way Halak, Gill and Gorges are playing on the back end, and the character shown by everyone who’s dressed, even Andrei Kostitsyn, this team can fight through anything.

  66. yathehabsrule says:

    Real turning point of the game was Friedman interviewing Jean Beliveau just before the start of the third period… Yeah I know the Habs players didn’t see it, but you know…



    Ya! The Habs Rule! now on Twitter!

  67. TripleX says:

    It is truly funny watching the CBC slowly jump on the Montreal Express.  Even Cherry seemed to be on the Habs side tonight.

    Montreal Canadiens ARE CANADA’s TEAM!



    “Good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgement.”

  68. chilehabfan says:

    You know the refs are bad when DON CHERRY brings it up!!!


    GO HABS!!!

  69. joeybarrie says:

    I mean if DON CHERRY is defending the Canadiens against Reffing. Then you KNOW its gotta be BAD. REALLY REALLY BAD. I mean were taking about Don “loves anything Bruins and Leafs’ Cherry…

    There may be other teams, but only ONE Club De Hockey…

  70. yathehabsrule says:

    What, you missed that sudden jolt when the Earth stopped turning? LOL Yeah it was unbeleivable… Guess Bettman said something about Cherry’s jacket or something.


    Ya! The Habs Rule! now on Twitter!

  71. yathehabsrule says:

    LMAO at Serious09’s suggestion.

    The artist who did the Centennial Plaza sculptures completed them in a matter of months. Unreal.

    I should email him and see if he could do that one. If the Habs get to the Finals, he might have it ready in time.


    Ya! The Habs Rule! now on Twitter!

  72. Castor says:

    It must be tough for Andrei K. Seriously.
    His pig headed brother is being pushed off of the team and AK still has to go home and see him and hear him complain. Meanwhile he’s hearing it from his coach about playing better. Not an easy position to be in. 
    Hopefully SK stays in MTL this trip.

  73. Habs Fan in Hogtown says:

    The best though was Don Cherry defending us on Coach’s Corner. I never thought I’d live to see the day!

  74. Fargo Habs Fan says:

    I’ve been debating a second tattoo, and I’ve decided on a portrait of the greatness that is Boone.  Man Crush On. 


  75. Keith says:

    Mr. Boone you truely crack me up ! LMFAO!!!

  76. RS says:

    Like getting a game 7 against Washington, tonight’s win puts this in gravy territory.

    I want the Habs to win the series (and the Cup) but getting to at least the sixth game against the champs is a successful season for this club, all things considered.

    It would be nice to have Spacek healthy.

  77. Norm0770 says:

    So is that chair in your living room Boone?  Had the Habs lost tonight it you could have had another one to match from the hides of Devorski and Furlatt.

  78. MikeL says:

    I’m so happy you decided to acknowledge the reffing, Boone. You’re blog is likely one of the more read hockey blogs on the internet, so your words are – I’d like to think so anyways – influential.

    Great write up and live game blog. Captures the emotions of the game perfectly.

  79. Norcal Habsfan says:

    My thoughts exactly. Years from now when they discover a confession on who killed JFK, beside it will be the smoking gun memo from Bettman to the little b……s that “ref’d” tonight’s game. Unbelievable.

    One thing to add… The save on Crosby at the goalmouth on the PK with about 5 min to go. Un-frickin-real. Are you kidding me!!!  NHL history will be made will have a new clip.

  80. megagoten says:

    i think the refs actually were two clones of stevie

  81. Ian Cobb says:

    Please excuse. My spell check is missing of my tool bar and I can’t get it back. It is worse than my devorce!!

    were kept on the edge of our seats most of the night, but would you
    have it any different. Now its a best of 3 series, only need to win two.

    for what I realy want to say. There is a lot of NBC money at stake
    here. The big money for the owners in the league is in TV state side.
    And where there is money there is coruption, or at the least
    favourtism. I will leave you with that thought while I speak to the
    game tonight itself, and how it was managed by the officials.

    have seen thousands of games in my lifetime, some rough, some dirty,
    some got right out of hand, some poorly officiated, but yes even
    referees have bad games.We always think that the ref missed a call or
    something during most games for one side or another. That’s just part
    of the game.

    But I have to tell you this. I have never seen a
    blatent spectacle of favourtism officiating like that in my entire
    life. It was worse than brutal.

    My opinion, the fix was in, no
    two referees could possibly be that incompatent, it made me sick. If
    Gauthier does not put in a formal request that these referees never see
    ice again. I will be very much disappointed in him.

  82. Norm0770 says:

    The real irony is that NBC pay NOTHING to broadcast the games.  CBC and CTV have bidding wars every few years for the right to broadcast in Canada and the US they lterally have to give it away.

    So Canada foots the bill and Bettman tries to grow the game south of the border.  Nice set up.

  83. yathehabsrule says:


    Hope you caught PK’s interview with Friedman AND his piece on The National


    Ya! The Habs Rule! now on Twitter!

  84. Xtrahabsfan says:

    Agree 100% Ian….blatant fix.And the question someone has to ask Bettman is “are you blind man?” Do you see how Montreal is Hockey’s Mecca…this is how the rest of the world should see Hockey’s passion!

  85. jimmy shaker says:

    I did find a “contact us” link on NHL.com down at the bottom right of there main page.  I sent a pretty scathing email, which they will probably laugh at and laugh off, but if eveyone else wants to join the party, then that might get Betsy’s attention…..But don’t hold your breathe.


  86. jimmy shaker says:

    Just a heads up to everyone. I found a “contact us” link on the NHL.com main page at the bottom right hand side that allowed for comments etc. I sent a pretty scathing email to them in which they will probably laugh at and then laugh off. But if they get enough of them from all of us on here, that just might and I mean might, get Betsy’s attention about the horendous display last night. I know some people were suggesting doing something, so here is the easiest thing we could do, besides snail mailing a letter to the league.


  87. dh says:

    You know that it’s bad when Don F. Cherry, Hab hater deluxe does a segment on how many calls the refs blew against the Habs.  As much as I don’t like Cherry, he loves hockey and he can see that this is ruining his game.

    Look at the first goal.  How is it not a penalty to grab Subban by the feet and tackle him?  And then to hear Bob Cole’s “and Subban loses the puck at the blue line…”

    Habs showed a lot of character to hang in there and win that game.  But how long can they fight against the refs? 

  88. habsguy says:

    Ian buddy…..doesn’t matter to me about spell check…I ALWAYS enjoy your posts !!!!!!..I can always understand them..keep it going bud!!

  89. habs fan from stonyplain says:

    like I posted earlier why has no canadian team won since 93 the year bettman took over??????????????????

  90. habsoul says:

    Some guys eat crow. I’m eating steak.

    My post from February 2, 2010:

    “In case no one has noticed, Halak is now Montreal’s #1 goalie and one of the best netminders in the NHL. His Save Percentage of .930 is within a hair of league leaders Ryan Miller and Tomas Vokoun. The complaints you hear about Halak are the same you heard about Dominic Hasek, who was drafted in the 10th Round.

    Put Niedermayer on the blueline and Halak becomes invincible.

    Goaltending and defense can take a team deep in the playoffs. Remember Anaheim/Giguere in 2003? Finished 7th in the West, lost to NJ in the Finals. Or Calgary/Kiprusoff in 2004. 5th in the West, lost to Tampa Bay in the Finals. How about Edmonton/Roloson in 2006? Oiler were 8th in the West, lost to Carolina in the Finals. (Roloson was injured in Game 1 and did not play the rest of the series.)

    You can’t count out any team that makes the playoffs.”

    Some of you guys who are cheering the loudest for the Habs run are the same ones who responded to this post by saying the Habs didn’t have a chance this year.

    Don’t be shy. Go ahead and apologize! I’m big enough a man to forgive you “geniuses”!

  91. Ayan_SB says:

    As great as those teams and their goalies were in the playoffs, they all share a thing in common: they all lost in the Stanley Cup Finals.

    Now I ask you, remember Carolina/Ward in 06 ;)?

  92. makka83 says:

    Miller is better than Halak and he’s out. I think that our success had a lot to do with Halak but quite a bit of heart and hard work from everyone! Buffalo just had no heart. It was Miller by himself.

  93. habsoul says:

    Gee, the guys who dissed me for this statement back in February are PRETTY QUIET right now.

    OK, let’s pretend you always believed it was possible. 

    I don’t care. I have a nice window seat on the bandwagon. Because I NEVER JUMPED OFF.


  94. The Cat says:

    Dont be a dork.

  95. Curtis O Habs says:

    Bettman can`t stop Halak.

  96. dhenry1234 says:

    To see how innaffective Crosby really has been these playoffs take a look at the HABSTV highlights. The last 30 seconds or so you see Gill push crosby out of the crease where maybe he could do some good for the penguins towards the outside more. Crosby then pretty much stays away from halak for the rest of his game when he should be fighting for that spot in front of halak.

  97. andrewberkshire says:


    You can contact the NHL Official’s union through this site, I doubt it’ll ever get a response or even get to anyone who can change anything, but if you need somewhere to send your grievances, it’s a start. Just a suggestion, try to keep it professional.

  98. JasonM says:

    How bad were the Refs? Even Don Cherry thought they stunk the joint.


    Let’s be honest, the Refs have been deplorable this series.

  99. HardHabits says:

    Pens big guns suffering from the same thing as the Caps did: Halak of production!!!

  100. andrewberkshire says:

    Hahahahahaha excellent!

  101. likehoy says:

    that’s the best halak pun yet!

    – What if Jaro Halak’s hand was indeed shaking? What if you took the CHOKE out of Ovechkin? — History Will Be Made

  102. SeriousFan09 says:

    Ha!!! Nice.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  103. jcflorence says:

    Perhaps the Molsons brought the Ghosts of the Forum back with them….


    10 for 25

  104. habsoul says:

    Damn right the Ghosts are back! 

    Some questions for Habs fans:

    Komisarek or Gill?
    Rivet or Gorges?
    Cammalleri or Tanguay?
    Gionta or Kovalev?
    Gomez or Koivu?
    Higgins or Pyatt?

    Me too. Now how would you have answered one year ago? Two years ago?

    I can’t believe we’re tied with Penguins—without the services of Andrei Markov or Jaro Spacek.


  105. habsoul says:

    I believe my post said “goaltending and defense.” The best goalie in the world can’t do it by himself, but without Halak this team is out of the playoffs.

    Who would take right now? Miller or Halak? 

    Yeah, that’s what I thought.

  106. ManApart says:

    Right now, there is nobody better than Halak, in the world. The guy has even been better than his supporters could have imagined. Just unbelievable.

  107. andrewberkshire says:

    There’s no doubt that at this moment no one is better than Halak.

  108. ManApart says:

    Most guys on this team have shown a ton of heart and character. It’s not even realistic, what we’ve seen so far. But Halak has been as good as any legend of the game could ever hope for. It’s unreal  what he has done, coming out of absolutely nowhere. If this team wins this series, I just will not even have words. Along with ’71, it would just be the most unbelievable turn of events in the history of this franchise.

  109. andrewberkshire says:

    If we win this series, this team will have carved a place for itself in Canadiens lore. Hell I’m not sure that they haven’t already done so. They do everything it takes to win, and there’s nothing I can say but I respect them more than any incarnation of the Habs since 1993. The fact that we’re tied in this series without Markov and Spacek makes it all the more improbable.

  110. The Cat says:

    Rask in Boston is on equal footing with Halak in my opinion.

  111. HardHabits says:

    BTW. That new photo of the Bettferee is classic.

  112. likehoy says:

    sorry but koivu and higgins >> gomez and pyatt.

    only way gomez is any good is that he has his wingman gionta.

    – What if Jaro Halak’s hand was indeed shaking? What if you took the CHOKE out of Ovechkin? — History Will Be Made

  113. SeriousFan09 says:

    I’d take Koivu at 30 over Gomez at 30, but Koivu’s 34 now and Gomez is 30 and Koivu had a number of injuries since he was 30, I love everything he ever gave the team but he’s just not up to giving the team an 82-game effort plus playoffs anymore in a Top 6 role.

    No shame in it, I will always have the utmost respect for Saku I don’t think he would be able to do what Gomez has done this year. The PK time, the PP time, ES situations, Koivu kept trying but I remember the playoff sweep last year, you could see Koivu was trying but his legs just couldn’t carry him the way he wanted them to. I salute Koivu as always, but acknowledge his best days are behind him. 


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  114. habsoul says:

    I think the more interesting comparison are Komisarek-Gill and Rivet-Gorges. Especially considering the Sharks gave up Gorges AND a first-round pick for Rivet.

    Right now I’m pushing Hal Gill for the Norris! 

  115. avatar_58 says:

    You are of course joking? I like Koivu but Gomez is just skilled. Koivu is a hard worker but to be perfectly honest with you we needed a new direction. This is it, and I couldn’t be happier. Thanks Koivu for the memories, but it is what it is.

    Higgins over Pyatt? NO. Pyatt has been amazing and frankly it was Higgins+hewhomightnotmakethenhl for Gomez and Pyatt. That’s a two for one, so this discussion can’t even take place. Excellent trade, save for Gomez’ enormous contract of course. C’est la vie.

  116. avatar_58 says:

    Koivu will always be our hab. No matter what 😉

  117. Tis Himself says:

    As former teachers used to tell me, it’s the journey, not the destinatiion, that counts. Given that, we should all be very happy to be fans of this team!

  118. Bouleau noir says:

    Unlike the teams mentionned in the previous post Carolina were expected to go deep in the playoffs that year after they had finished on top in the East.

  119. habsoul says:

    An unbeliever! Blasphemy.

    Remember it well. And you probably remember that Roloson was injured in Game 1 of the Finals and did not play another game.

    it’s true those teams lost, but Edmonton, Calgary, and Anaheim all took their series to 7 games.

  120. Bill says:

    Any coincidence that Hal Gill has been called for penalties the past three games? No doubt in my mind that the NHL has contacted the officials with instructions to be more vigilant about Gill’s ‘interference’. Putting Montreal’s best killer in the box is the best advantage they could give the Pens.

    Loving the Habs! What a team.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

  121. MikeL says:

    You didn’t hear? There’s a new, expanded rule book made specifically for Hal Gill.

  122. The Cat says:

    Yeah I noticed that too.

  123. avatar_58 says:

    How about that Gill btw? I’ve been noticing he’s leading on the ice, telling people to watch out or where to be. He’s a leader

  124. Shiloh says:

    Conspiracy theories are often full of holes, but I’ll only say this:  For eleven years I was the local federation president and the employer would call from time to time to indicate that there had been a “mistake” with an employee’s benefits or paycheque. I would always answer, “If they’re really mistakes then 50% of the time the employee should benefit.” When every “mistake” harms the employee then they aren’t mistakes. 

    So is the refereeing just incompetent? If so, then the Habs should benefit half the time from it. If they don’t ever get the long end of the straw, then it’s not incompetence.

  125. andrewberkshire says:

    Great analogy, Shiloh.

  126. ooder says:


    who’s face is that i see near the save % leader board


    “I like what I’m seeing right now,” assessed Markov. “We’re not perfect, but we’re trying to be.”

  127. floatingineather says:

  128. Rob D says:

    I usually dislike Glen Healey as I find he’ll say inflammatory things just to be heard above the din of Bob Cole doing his thing. (Hmmm..Bob was OK tonight though..he did a great job during that 9+ minute stretch in the 2nd with no stoppage, best game from him in YEARS)

    But he (GH) called that Sens shill Galley out on the non calls on both Pens goals and while he didn’t come right out and say they were missed calls..he said they could be interpreted as penalties by an observer.Then he goes and ruins it all with his comments on Gionta..lol..douchebag…I hope the Leafs hire this guy soon so I don’t have to hear his hyperventilated takes on the power of the Pens. “This isn’t Washington!!” said he as we lost the first game mostly due to exhaustion.

    You can hear the disdain Gary has for the Habs as the game progresses. For the thousandth time..where is this era’s Danny Gallivan and Dick Irvin? CBC should be able to swing that instead of giving us what they do. Maybe the Habs will have their own broadcasts sometime in the future in English. RDS already does a great job for the French side and I watch 90% of the games on that channel. But I can’t resist our national broadcaster when the playoffs roll around as we all pay their salaries. We aren’t getting our money’s worth as Habs fans ..that’s for sure.

    This team has given us everything they have. It’s apparent they are in no way as talented or as deep as the elite teams they are playing. But they are matching them in coaching (JM and Kirk Muller), goaltending (and how!) and that little thing we Canadians like to call…HEART. That they won tonight after losing their best player and one of thier other best d-men is astonishing. I have to agree with Ian and Mr. Boone that this was just an outrageous refereeded game. I think they missed a few on us as well..but we clearly got taken to the cleaners in the first period.

    Whatever else happens..they have “done good” Heaven help us if we ever start hitting on a few more draft picks like PK…we might actually start getting used to long playoff runs…


    I am out…


  129. bp says:

    How does Crosby slash and break two Habs sticks and avoid getting called? I was really hoping one of the journalists in the press conferences would ask the coaches about how Crosby manages to avoid the calls everyone else gets. Or maybe someone at the CBC would have the stones to raise it during the broadcast. Friedman hinted at the poor officiating but I guess you can’t really expect the right’s holder to ask too many pointed questions.



  130. HabsFanInVictoria says:

    I’m with you.  In some sports we say “the ball never lies”, meaning, if the ref blew the call, the next one will probably go your way… you know, the law of averages.  There was no average here tonight.

  131. Dintrox says:

    Don Cherry mentioned the biased reffing during coach’s corner..

    December 4, 2009 – Elmer Lach’s jersey took its rightful place with the Rocket’s in the rafters.

  132. HabsFanInVictoria says:

    As an athlete and a coach (11 years) i’ve had my share of really poor officiating.  The hardest part, is pulling yourself together and trucking on.   It hasn’t been said enough, these Habs don’t whine, and they don’t complain.  They keep on moving their feet and making their own opportunities. It really is your only option. Also, for all the JM haters out there, who think he should be losing his cool at the refs… a smart coach keeps their cool, if only to let his team know that they are still in control.

    I’ve love to sit down with Red Fisher or Dick Irvin, to pick their brains to see whether or not the Habs have had a team like this, that shows the kind of will and determination against such odds.  

    BOONE?  STUBBS? HICKEY?  You’re as old as sin, can you compare this team to any of the great teams of the past?  A team that on paper shouldn’t win, but seems to find a way? 

  133. habs001 says:

    if we could just get some production from plecks.ak46 and pouliot in the next 2 games…was pouliot just a flash as one goal now  in 25 games

  134. FSUPhi1584 says:

    Man, you can help but cheer for a guy like Lapierre when you see how much joy he gets from scoring a goal, and all the work he puts in to create scoring chances. His heart is truly in it. The Habs need to renew his contract. I think much of his underperforming this year was due, in part, to poor utilization by JM. A guy like Lapierre excels in a system where he can forecheck aggressively and cash in on the mistakes other teams make. Plus he is super fast and hard to get off the puck in the corners.

  135. oshawahabsfan says:

    Just watched the Coaches Corner clip. You know the officiating is horrible when the head master of the Hab Haters can’t resist defending the Canadiens. That straight arm on Kostitsyn was just ridiculous, there is no excuse for missing that and that pair needs to be taken to task for it. I thought last game was bad when they messed up huge on the calls at the end of the second and the Malkin who should have been in the box scored the winning goal. They managed to hit a new level in this game. I honestly think Chris Lee would have done a better job and that’s saying something. Let’s hope the team can win game five without having to beat two teams!

  136. light_n_tasty says:

    This spam filter is still ridiculous.  D i c k?  Really?  Grow-up, spam filter.

  137. bp says:

    He did, but the broken sticks were after Coaches Corner and no one in the broadcast followed up on it. No mentions, no replays, Sid get’s the kid glove treatment from the refs and the nations broadcaster.   

  138. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …was it PhotoShopped ? …or was the ref in the photo above with Crosby …the spittin’-image of Bettman ?

    …if PhotoShopped by The Golden-Girl Mike …tell Her Chris said ‘BRILLIANT’ !!!

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY


  139. habsoul says:

    The coolest thing about this series is seeing Crosby for the spoiled brat that he is.

    And the second coolest thing is seeing Gorges and Gill own Mr. Olympic Hero!

  140. Canadiangrrl says:

    Long time lurker, first time poster. :)

    I was introduced to Boone, Hickey, et al by my HIO-obsessed fiance, Chuck.  I’d like to preface this by saying a) I’m rapidly becoming addicted to this place and b) you (the writers and the Commentariat) really know your stuff.

    The officiating last night was truly the worst I have ever witnessed in all of my years of watching any professional sport.  I’m almost embarrassed on behalf of all of the officials out there who, broadly speaking, do a solid job, night in and night out.  With that being said, sometimes, karma’s a female dog…and I was so thrilled for les boys tonight, and I’m so proud of what they’ve accomplished to date.  In the immortal words of Bon Scott, it’s a long way to the top, but I feel as though we’re doing the best we can with what we have (for the most part) and I could not be more excited to see how it all unfolds…despite the seemingly best efforts of the zebras to keep us down.

    Thanks for all of your witty bon mots.  It’s fun to read — keep it up. :)


  141. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …hard to say whether We will go-on to take this series (…I remain optimistic) …but even IF We do not, I will remember this game as The Statement Game of this season …it summarized the grit, courage and character of Our Team, encapsulated in 60 minutes …overcoming Our Own shortcomings, the opposition ,and referreeing that seemed determined to be the 7th man on the ice for the Penguins

    …don’t underestimate what an incredible victory this was

    …and IF I was One of Our Players tonight ? …WHAT an incredible confidence and momentum boost I will feel before going to sleep, awaiting the games to come

    …You played a wonderful game that made This Fan DAMN PROUD to be a Habs’ Fan

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY


  142. The Cat says:

    Thats what I was going to say, about the Don Cherry part. The good news is everyone noticed the refereeing which probably means the habs should get a few breaks next game. But all in all, if people still think the NHL doesnt try to coax certain desired outcomes, well they have to be a little naive.

  143. Clay4bc says:

    Welcome, and well said!


    “Peoples will only be truly free when the last king is strangled by the bowels of the last priest” Francois Laignelot –

  144. RudeMood19 says:

    Anyone have a link to PK Subban’s interview on CBC???

  145. Clay4bc says:

    Dick works with a capital “D”, but small looks like this dick LOL


    “Peoples will only be truly free when the last king is strangled by the bowels of the last priest” Francois Laignelot –

  146. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …lol …MAYBE I should read Mike’s ALN post BEFORE writin’ My inane comments ?

    …tip-o-the-hat to Habber 86 …great and funny work

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY


  147. The Cat says:

    Dominic Moore deserves some praise, he is quickly turning into one of my favourite players. He is totally instrumental in the habs post season success so far.

  148. The_Salted_One says:

    Been reading HIO for a long time, but never got around to registering.  i have to say, these playoffs have been really fun to watch, and it has been a long time since i have enjoyed the habs playoff run as much as i’ve enjoyed it this season.  What i love about this team the most? NO QUIT!! This team has not quit at all!  i can’t believe how well guys like Laps and Moore and Pyatt(its about time i get to watch a home town player with the habs) are playing.  I think Laps is finally showing us what we all knew he could do, and great timing as well.  amazing. absolutely amazing!


    your friendly neighborhood Salted One

  149. Danno says:

    Crosby’s styrofoam stick – Lol!


    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

  150. The Cat says:

    Philly got the same treatment against the penguins last year: they were within an eyelash of going up 3-1 in games until the refs got busy and gave a chincy penalty to philly late and another chincy one in OT.

  151. supremefan44 says:

    I thought the same thing when the game was over. They not only beat the Penguins but the so called referees too. I dont think I have ever seen such a lopsided display of officiating. The Ref didnt call a penalty on Gil til Sidney looked at him and threw his arms up. I couldnt believe it I almost lost my mind. After all that the Pens team r whining and slamming there sticks. Unbelievable. I am so proud of this team. It would have been easy for them to lay down last night and use the deplorable officiating as an excuse but they pushed through it. Way to go guys. You also have to give Martin credit if he had lost his mind behind the bench his team would have done the same. Leo G.

  152. ed lopaz says:

    Habs hockey = Smart hockey we work as a team, and we win as a team. we play 5 man defence – not just 2. we play with energy, we play with Subban in Markov’s place (for now) – Pk could have been with us since the Olympics, but nevermind that.

    did you see when Gionta got crosschecked in the back in front of the Pitt net, and went down in a heap?

    the boys on RDS made an interesting point saying the ref looked nervous.

    and the camera showed the ref almost lecturing Gionta – that Gionta was close to being called for embellishment.

    here’s my point: I think the refs seem more nervous than I remember in year’s past.

    maybe some of them have never been part of a second round in Montreal?

    maybe the fans, the excitement, its affecting the refs judgement.

    and maybe, after all those years of visiting teams complaining that the Habs got all the calls in the Montreal, the refs are so conscious of this, that they are almost going o0ut of their way to make sure that doesn’t happen.


  153. The Cat says:

    No, you grow up!

    Amicably yours,

                          Spam filter.

  154. tony d says:

    I’m usually a glass half empty guy and after the 1st 2 periods and some of the crappiest hockey from our boys, I basically threw in the towel. Thank God our boys didn’t and found the cohones to battle back. I felt all along that this Pens team was beatable but our boys were making them look better than they are. I think if we can limit our turnovers (that goes for you too PK) and keep up an aggressive forecheck, we can win the next 2. Halak delivered when the stakes were high (even after a weak start) And as far as the reffing goes, it is what it is, we can pull a Crosby and cry and bitch but it’s beyond our control. What we CAN control is the puck and the opposing players and if we can get our offense firing on all cylinders, then the golf clubs will have to gather cobwebs in the garage for another month.

  155. JF says:

    I can still hardly believe we won that game.  I was so depressed watching the first two periods. A great start, a goal from our fourth line, then in a blink it all fell apart, we were getting outshot and outplayed, we were down a goal, and the referees were conveniently blind to blatant infractions by the Penguins.  Game over, series over.  But what a third period!  Lapierre’s hardworking wraparound and Gionta’s lucky goal ignited the team and they played brilliant, gutsy defensive hockey the rest of the way, stymieing the Penguins’ stars, killing off penalties, and desperately defending their lead.  To a man, they were single-minded, committed, and heroic. From the opening faceoff, the ice was heavily tilted in favour of the Penguins, both their goals being scored because of obvious non-calls on their players.  It takes a lot of character to respond to the situation the way our team did.  They kept their cool, no one complained or gave the refs an opportunity to assess an unsportsmanlike conduct, they just buckled down and did what they had to do to win.  I think P.K. Subban said it best when he was questioned in a post-game interview about the officiating.  He just said things happen in games and you  have to put it behind you and remember there’s a lot of hockey to be played.  You just get on with your job.  That showed class and a lot of maturity from a 20-year old.  By contrast, Bylsma and the Penguins, especially Crosby during the game, never stopped whining.  Hard to believe that Bylsma thought the officiating favoured the Habs.

    Crosby is really pissing me off this series.  I’ve admired him as a player and I thought he had matured the last couple of seasons.  But I’ve never seen a player whine the way he’s been doing.  When you add it to the things he gets away with – breaking his stick, slashing, etc. – it is disgusting.  It makes me feel even prouder of our guys, how hard they work, how they’ve fought through injuries as well as terrible officiating, how they just shut up and play hockey.  They’re a classy, gutsy bunch.

    This game could be a turning-point.  At the very least, it gives us some serious momentum going back to Pittsburgh, and it sows seeds of doubt in the minds of the Penguins.  On most nights Fleury is beatable while Halak is extremely difficult to beat; and their stars have been mostly silent during the series.  Hopefully the fact that CBC as well as RDS slammed the officiating means we’ll see a more even-handed job next time.

  156. Chris says:

    2001-02 Montreal Canadiens showed plenty of grit, methinks.  With a roster that makes this year’s edition look like the mid-1980’s Edmonton Oilers, the Habs fought tooth and nail all season to stay close to a playoff position, largely because of unreal goaltending by Jose Theodore.  All the while dealing with their captain, Saku Koivu, dealing with his cancer.

    Koivu makes his return and the Habs promptly knock off the overwhelming favourite Boston Bruins, despite losing another of their top players, Richard Zednik, to a brutal Kyle McLaren forearm shiver.  The Habs did go out in the second round but had the Hurricanes on the ropes with a 2-1 series lead.  Some absolutely terrible officiating contributed to that series lost as well…I can still remember Doug Gilmour getting penalized solely for slammign the penalty box door, something that pretty much every player in NHL history had done to that point.

  157. 24 Cups says:

    Sara – Glad to see that you have finally arrived on the site. Chuck can look after the world of rock and roll while you join us here in Hab land with your enlightened posts about our beloved team.

    (Bon Scott – For those about to rock – we salute you.)

  158. ds says:

    I’m very happy that Montreal overcame playing the Penguins & the NHL Officials but with 3 games left every game is crucial and it’s time for Montreal’s management to step up.  If the Leafs were ever sided against like this, Brian Burke would start a storm.  Fines be damned!  Pierre Gauthier needs to immediately file an official protest with the NHL due to the one sided officiating.  If Sidney Crysby is such a star he doesnt’ need the type of protection his team is getting, all series long the NHL is trying to push the Penguins to the finals vs the Blackhawks and it is disgusting.  Lemieux & Gretzky never needed referees helping them, suddenly it seems Crysby is talking to the referees more than his team mates it is disgusting.  Everytime Crysby and Gill are on the ice, Crysby looks at the referees trying to get a call, it is ridiculous and should be an unsportsmanlike penalty.  I hope somebody breaks that punks legs, he does not deserve to play in the NHL.  In 25 years i’ve never seen such blatant one sided officiating and it is not the referees behind it, the NHL is behind it.  I hope Montreal wins this series but they will have to do so against all odds.

  159. Caper says:

    While I am Nova Scotia born and bred, I am ready to strangle the s**t out of Sydney Crosby. Needless to say he is learning well from his landlord the master of all whiners, number 66.  I’m sure his Dad read this website. Tell Sydney to do all of us Bluenosers proud,  play hard and shut up. That being said continue to suck and not score goals.

  160. Caper says:

    I disagree. Mario and Wayner whined however Lemieux was brutal. It’s claimed that his first retirement had a lot to do with his frustration with how the game had become. .i.e New jersey clutch and grab.

  161. ds says:

    You’re right Wayne & Mario got calls strictly in their favor but their team never got such blatant non-calls..  When Wayne was on nobody was allowed to touch him or face the consequences same with Mario but when their teammates were on it was not the same situation..  I don’t remember referees helping Pittsburgh, LA or Edmonton win cups the way they did last night.  Individual stars always get calls, but individual teams i’ve never seen it.  What’s your opinion?

  162. Puck Bard says:

    While I am sure the refereeing was bad, I don’t buy the argument that somehow Bettman has the fix in.

    What is to be gained by a Penguins win? Nobody in the States even knows who Sidney Crosby is (it’s not like he’s Sean White). Even if they are the champs, Pittsburgh in the finals is hardly a market cleanup (Montreal would be equally attractive given their heritage).

    A Rangers / Kings final? Yes, then I might be suspicious. 

  163. CHsam says:

    Man. ABOUT LAST NIGHT is the best damn read in the morning ever, especially after a WIN !

    Buttman must be having a group outings with Crosby, Mario, Macguire, Chris Lee, or whoever else in any combination. Every friggin game there’s a problem with officiating. @#@$!!!!  Sidney Crosby. pfffff . Go home and pick me some lobster ya whiner.

  164. Caper says:

    I’m a bad person to ask. I really disliked Mario though I admired his hockey talents. You’re probably right. What I remember is Mario whining after games about officiating many times and many of those times directing his comments directly to his now pal Bettman.

  165. ds says:

    Bret Hull used to criticize the officiating nightly same with Roenick, nobody wanted to watch that style of hockey it isn’t worth the $ that was charged.  But you’re right about superstars whining but now it’s up to MTL’s management to do something the officiating is out of the players hands.  That’s my point would Brian Burke or Lou Lammerelo permit such poor officiating?  Neither should Pierre Gauthier.  The fix is in, and if it was an individual referee he would fix it for MTL to win because he would win more gambling than Pittsburgh winning that’s why I think it is an order from above.

  166. Caper says:


  167. Caper says:

    I think the Habs management  has complained. It’s not our style to be like Burke or any other of the loud mouths.

  168. Chris says:

    Chicago – Boston is probably the NHL’s choice given who’s left.  San Jose – Boston would be an obvious second choice, but you can’t beat two of the biggest markets in North America for TV viewership potential.

  169. Chris says:

    “Our style” hasn’t won any Stanley Cups in recent memory, while the vocal power-GM’s like Burke and Lamoriello have.  I’m not saying the Habs should start chirping, but a strict adherence to something that no longer works might not be a great idea either.  :)

  170. avatar_58 says:

    HORRIBLE officiating. I cannot believe they won against the refs AND the pens.

    Also PK! National TV interview and doesn’t skip a beat. He’s going places I tell you. 😉

  171. avatar_58 says:

    Awesome feeling isn’t it? Every win is a bonus and it feels so good when it happens. ZERO pressure.

  172. HabFanSince72 says:

    Before we get carried away, the refs failed to call a blatant pen on Hamrlik on our winning goal.

    never attribute to malice what can be explained by simple incompetence.



  173. Caper says:

    Hey Chris. A big mouth in the work place can only get you so far. And not very far. Burke is over rated and had a minor part in the Ducks winning the Cup. Brian Murray built most of that team.  Lamoriello hasnt had much luck lately however I don’t think`of hismas a loud mouth. We as fans have no idea what goes on behind the scenes. For all me know Habs management is going postal over the phone at Bettman. A cool head works. See last night.

  174. Clay4bc says:

    You can see the game on demand on the CBC website. Just scroll towards the end of the video, and you will see it…


    “Peoples will only be truly free when the last king is strangled by the bowels of the last priest” Francois Laignelot –

  175. Fansincebirth says:

    Sydney Crosby may have been born a Bluenoser but Mario has turned him into a Brownnoser!

    “Without the strength of the past, the team may face a choice – to win, or to be French-Canadian?” — Ken Dryden

  176. Natrous says:

    Haha the site censored D!ck Irvin lol

  177. Fargo Habs Fan says:

    Welcome to our family!  Now you just have to convince my wife that her life would be better if she posted here. 


    “The good thing about drinking during games is if they lose, you’re too drunk to care during and too hungover to care after.” – J.T.

  178. Fargo Habs Fan says:

    So I’d get nothing but *** is what you’re saying.  That sucks.


    “The good thing about drinking during games is if they lose, you’re too drunk to care during and too hungover to care after.” – J.T.

  179. Fargo Habs Fan says:

    I’ve been called out here before on this topic, but since Calgary had a game winner taken back against Tampa, I’ve felt the fix was on.

    Money is a dangerous thing, and Bettman and co see a lot of additional money to be made in the US.  Look at the Leafs.  No Cups in many of our lifetimes, but they still sell out every game.  What difference does it make if they win or lose?  The money is there regardless.

    On the flip side, one could argue about the massive revenue generated by the league’s biggest building.  One could argue for the insane profits the NHL would reap from merchandise sales if our Habs win the Cup.

    Still, after displays like last night, things look shady.

    I hope I am wrong.


    “The good thing about drinking during games is if they lose, you’re too drunk to care during and too hungover to care after.” – J.T.

  180. habber86 says:

    why thank you!

  181. Chuck says:

    How long until you start with the “get back to work” posts?



    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  182. Taipei 101 says:

    You know Mike, I think that the Molson’s, as well as anyone with a vested interest in hockey in this province, would gladly trade a few games profit for the buzz that inspired hockey in May has created. Honestly, the electricity in town, especially after last night’s unlikely comeback, has given me a feeling I haven’t experience since, oh, 1993?

    What wins championships? Top 6 forwards playing solid 2-way hockey. A shut-down D pair for blanketing the opposition’s top line. A lights-out, hot-as-he-can-be goaltender.

    The only thing that I hope, and pray, is that last night’s victory will stop people from saying “No matter what happens, we’re proud” and start them saying “What if?” No one picked us to start the season, but I’m fairly sure no one picked us in ’86 or ’93 either. Top seeds have fallen…let’s start believing that there’s a Conference Final or even a Cup Final…all created in Bob Gainey’s laboratory last summer.

    I don’t hear too many Koivu/Kovalev/Komisarek lovers now…

  183. avatar_58 says:

    I believe. Anything is possible, however I still think “no matter what” because this year has been excellent. I expected so little when Markov went down at the beginning. PLEASANTLY surprised to see us all the way up here.

  184. Clay4bc says:

    All good points…except – Koivu lovers nowhere to be found? Really? I love Koivu still. He was one of the greatest captains EVER for this team, He gave his heart and soul every shift, and double that in the playoffs. No need to imply that we are better off without him. Perhaps lose him from your list next time, because you are dead on about the others.


    “Peoples will only be truly free when the last king is strangled by the bowels of the last priest” Francois Laignelot

  185. Taipei 101 says:

    Clay, the reason that Saku is there is not for his heart, it’s for his ability to get everyone in the room pushing in the right direction. There were some mighty large egos in that room…it just seems to me that the new guys have managed to bond together to keep the s**theads (SKos, BGL) out.

    Love your tagline/quote, by the way.

  186. Clay4bc says:

    Sure, Saku couldn’t pull that team together. But I bet if he were on this team, with these character guys, instead of the bunch of nancy-boys we had last year, that would have never been an issue. Saku should have retiered a Hab. Still though – hard to argue with the bunch we have now. Quality guys who care about winning, not just the paycheck. Saku would have thrived in this enviornment.


    “Peoples will only be truly free when the last king is strangled by the bowels of the last priest” Francois Laignelot –

  187. byrneo says:

    Does anyone know if there is a youtube video for the montage CBC showed of all the blown calls/non calls from last night?

  188. Curtis O Habs says:

    That was the “Subway Close Up” montage.

  189. Jbell10 says:

    Habs are playing like a well oiled machine.

    Clear blueprint on how to function.

    All parts are holding strong and performing as they were designed, from the simple lugnuts to the 6 cylinder engine pumping out power and consistency.

    The mechanic is maintaining the fuel lines.

    And the oil, the blood and guts of the machine is holding everything together and  driving the machine forward.


    ps. Mr Boone,

    I saw Gorges pulling into the Bell Center yesterday afternoon and he was pumping some Jay-Z – Empire State of Mind out of his Escalade. I love Neil Young and the classics you post here, but I think Josh would appreciate some Jay-Z posted for good luck! :)


  190. DrA says:

    Can you spell D-E-S-T-I-N-Y!

  191. habsman-itoba says:

    Is this a trick question?

  192. nohockey2004 says:

    Dominic Moore is best pick up during the season for Habs, works his butt off every shift & such a smart player.

    Gorges takes a hit almost every play to make the play. He is definitely deserving of his Beauchamp award.

  193. RogerP728 says:

    My comment is about the refs last night. The calls were so one sided that it makes me wonder if it doesn’t suit Bettman’s overall plan to have any Canadian teams still alive in the playoffs. The worst thing that could happen in Bettman’s view would be a Vancouver-Montreal final. I’m not much for conspiracy theories, but it does makes me wonder.

  194. isirota1965 says:

    I echo your thoughts.

  195. isirota1965 says:

    I never get worked up about the officiating.  Never.  But, last night’s fiasco was so absurd that even a local friend of mine, who is a diehard Penguins fan, thought that Montreal was getting jobbed.  Kudos to the team for beating TWO teams last night, the Penguins and the Zebras.  Now it’s a best of three series, and we already know that Montreal can win in Pittsburgh………..

  196. Jbell10 says:

    Ok the officiating was not good, but honestly most of the time in all levels of hockey there is something negative to be said about the reffing during every single game.

    We have to stop whinning about it folks, it is not part of the Habs game plan so ignore it. We  cannot  control when they blow their whistles.

    The Habs battled and they won deservingly, thats the bottom line, you cannot blame the refs, period.


  197. Shublips says:

    What a comeback by the Habs!  Halak continues to be Halak, Lapierre has rediscovered his game and Gionta is carrying this team on his back.

    Did you see the look in his eyes in the third?  He refused to lose that game because of the refs.  He was determined for the Habs to overcome the adversity and win, DESPITE the refs.

    That guy is a true leader and is making all the difference in this post season:

    So what happens next game?  Can that Habs keep the ball rolling?

    Habs Addict.com http://www.HabsAddict.com on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Habs-Addict/293450486615 on Twitter: http://twitter.com/HabsAddict on Hockeybuzz.com: http://www.hockeybuzz.com/blogger_archive.php?blogger_id=137

  198. Curtis O Habs says:

    Not to mention two, too many men non calls on Pitt and a bit of a phantom hold called on Gill.  Bettman can`t stop Halak.

  199. ClaytonM says:

    After the 3rd goal went in, all I could say was The Ghosts are back in Montreal.  How else can you explain The Habs tying a series that has been tilted in favour of Pittsburgh by the NHL and the refs?  Unfortunately for crysby the refs showed their intentions too much last, so now they’ll have a lot of eyes on them to keep them honest.

    I loved PK’s interview after the game, but the Gionta interview had a key element to it.  When Elliott Friedman brought up the refs, Gionta had the best line of the night – “I have NO COMMENT there”.  Gionta knows that saying anything else would endanger Game 5’s officiating and prejudice Montreal.

    That’s why I’m glad that Don Cherry said what he did on CC.  Habs fans want their team to win every night.  We also want to be given a fair chance at winning, but that has not been the case in every game of our post season.

  200. mfDx says:

    Game 7. Jacques Martin says “Hello” to the ref before the game.

    Crosby is awarded a penalty shot.

    And two more in the third if the Penguins are trailing.

  201. Jonathan says:

    It was very ugly! It is time that the refeering starts reffering like they should. It is not because Crosby is a star that he should have a start treatment. Gordie Howe was a great player, Maurice Richards was a god for the Montreal Canadiens and they did not have a star treatment. If Star treatment is possible, than we have a big problem, because Crosby and Malkin will be safe even if they commit murder.

  202. Rossy says:

    One non-call you did not list came during a Pens PP in the third when a Habs’ stick lay in pieces on the ice.  As I said, conspiracy theorists sure got a bellyful of ammunition from last night’s game.  Thank God the Habs got the W.

  203. nova scotia vees says:

    First of all….the refs were brutal.  The tackle on P.K.(Fedetenko grabbed his ankles), and so many others that were clearly shown on both TSN and HNIC.  And not mentioned by most was the blantant “too many men”, where the guy came on and took the puck while his teammate was 15 feet from the bench.  Gave them a great rush…

    Refs cannot be that stupid.  It HAS TO BE part of the “plan”.  Seriously…everyone, even Pittsburgh reporters are talking about the non-calls.  As well, when will the NHL stop calling penalties on broken sticks!  Idiotic!  And to those who say “refs don’t decide games”….well then why bother having refs?  Call your own fouls.

    As for the guy who wants Crosby’s legs broken….STOP IT!  I am not happy with how he is acting, but I am also disgusted at how he is being treated by the “fans”.  He is still a Canadian hero, and this crap of chanting at the superstars is bush league.

    What is not bush league is the fans throwing stuff on the ice (when the play is dead), to protest the fixed officiating.  It is the only way to bring attention to how bad it has become.  If I had been there, I would have thrown my shoes and coat!!

  204. ajpursell says:

    As I was watching the game on Versus yesterday, as I had it recorded, I must say that when the notable and earnest announcers of Mike Emerick and Darren Eliot say ‘this is a well officated game’ that my monocle popped out in surprise and I spat my tea all across the dining room table and fine china.

    Once again, even if the Habs lose two more games, that’s still two more games they’re playing that no one gave them credit for, and I hope that the Pens get their comeuppance for the way they’re playing as though the playoffs are just an annoyance on their way to a pre-ordained coronation.

  205. yves_on_habs says:

    I was getting serious flashbacks to our “3 diving calls in one game”… game last night.

    After the obvious calls were missed, I almost expected someone to get penalized for falling to the ice. Especially in the 3rd period.


    The boys held composure and kept working. Even Bob Cole stopped referring to everything that went the Habs way as “luck” and gave a couple of positive comments.

    Even though some say that “they’re lucky… Pittsburgh should have won that one”…. um, I don’t know.

    Habs were a bunch that kept working and didn’t wine a bunch when the officiating went to “ridiculous”…. it would have been an excuse to pack it in.

    Well done boys.

    – Yves –

    Blog – http://yvesonhabs.com

    Twitter – http://twitter.com/yves_on_habs

  206. yves_on_habs says:

    I should note…. by “obvious calls”… I meant that went uncalled against Pittsburgh.

    – Yves –

    Blog – http://yvesonhabs.com

    Twitter – http://twitter.com/yves_on_habs

  207. moonkid says:

    For a good laugh, you guys should check the Pensblog.  Could they be any more bitter?

    No wonder cities like Pittsburgh are easier to play in than Montreal.  Instead of crapping on their own team after a loss like we do, they just crap all over their opponent.  Funny stuff.

    Of course, it would be nice to get a little respect from other teams for what the Habs have done.  Calling them “no talent <expletive>’s who rely on their goalie”, means nothing coming from their fans, but a bit disappointing when the players themselves say it.

    The most hilarious thing is they think PITTSBURGH who were the ones were screwed by the refs..

  208. jbroderi says:

    Bob Cole gets a lot of flack on this site, but to be honest, I truly think he is cheering for the Habs in this series.  You could tell by he somber attitude when he called the open net goal in game 3 for Pittsburgh.  He lost a step from his younger days for sure, and is a bit senile, but I think he is doing a good job in this series..   Too bad ole dick irvin wasn’t with him!!!


    “I’ll take potent potables for 500, Alex” JB

  209. Kain292 says:

    Terrible officiating is starting to become a staple in the Habs games this playoff season. Despite this, we’re still somehow winning, and I thank Baby Jesus every time we do.
    Halak is simply the greatest thing on skates right now. Nothing can be said about him that hasn’t been already…except maybe adding “Stanley Cup Champion” before his name.

    And how about that AK? After being brutally quiet since the playoffs started, he’s finally getting into his groove. He just needs to start popping up on the score sheet.

  210. SeriousFan09 says:

    I’m enjoying our wins a ton because of all the fanboy blogs from the Pittsburgh bandwagon. Oh no, they’ve had TWO playoff losses in a series, how will they cope? Uptight fans who don’t understand Montreal isn’t going to lose just because they want us to.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  211. TripleX says:

    I still believe Bob Cole is a Leafs fan through and through. But he has been relegated to second string by the CBC and he is rejuvenated by the Cinderella Habs.  He knows he has a winner of a series and like an old war horse he is taking the saddle and running with it.  His call in the third gave me goose bumps.  The mind might not be as quick but that VOICE is still awesome.



    “Good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgement.”

  212. ClaytonM says:

    If I chugged a beer every time Bob Cole made a mistake in either calling the game or giving The Habs no credit for a great play, I’d miss the 3rd period regularly, passed out on the floor.

  213. Chuck says:

    Dick Irvin was my favourite radio play-by-play guy.


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

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