Any shrinks or dream interpreters out there?
I had a dream last night in which Alex Kovalev is standing on a downtown street and I’m looking up at him. Overhead, the clear blue sky is filled with exotic kites.
I’m mesmerized. But a certain point, Kovalev, quite annoyed, demands to know: "What are you staring at?"
Then the focus shifts to Guy Carbonneau’s press scrum. In shirtsleeves and sweating profusely, Carbonneau is asked if his greatest coaching achievement has been successfully motivating Kovalev. Carbo starts to answer, but I woke up.
I have no clue … unless the kites represent the lofty aspirations of Canadiens fans eight days ago.
That’s when the team easily beat the New York Islanders to move within three points of Ottawa in the Eastern Conference standings.
But a week ago Canadiens lost to the Rangers.
Tuesday they beat the Senators, who were playing without Daniel Alfredsson and Dany Heatley but still mounted a third-period comeback.
Thursday night at the Bell Centre, Canadiens lost ignominiously to one of the worst team in the NHL.
And then they went to Ottawa.
I’ll not dwell on last night’s game. It was on RDS and the CBC, so most everyone saw it.
In the wilds of Kanata where no one could hear the screams, Heatley, Alfredsson and Jason Spezza bent our first-place aspirants over a log.
And if you think that metaphor is ugly or inappropriate, you didn’t see the game.
I don’t know why Carbo broke up his best defence pairing. But Mike Komisarek and Francis Bouillon started the game, and ach of them was minus-two before the game was two minutes old.
The Tomas Plekanec line started against Spezza et al – and that was a mismatch. Ottawa pressured Plekanec all through the game, forcing him to make hasty decisions and errant passes. You can bet that technique will be employed by other teams.
The power play scored once in seven opportunities. The best player on the ice when Canadiens had the man advtantage was Chris Kelly, who plays for Ottawa.
Adding inury to insult, Wade Redden, pissed-off by all the trade speculation in Ottawa, took itout on Sergei Kostitsyn.
Glimmers of hope? Not many.
Carey Price was OK. The reunited Saku Koivu line had its moments – but Christopher Higgins is having less luck scoring than I used to on Crescent St. Canadiens hit the goalposts five times. Roman Hamrlik will be back soon.
No need to panic – yet. Teams and their fans survive the long NHL season by not getting too high or too low.
All that talk about first place was too high.
We’ll find out in Florida just how low Canadiens are about to go.