About last night …


Montreal hockey fans, who hadn’t seen St. Louis play on Bell Centre ice since January, 2012, won’t see the Blues again until next season.
Unless, of course, the teams meet in the Stanley Cup final.
Anyone want to bet their kids’ college money on the likelihood of that best-of-seven match-up?

I didn’t think so.

St. Louis is a serious Stanley Cup aspirant.

Your Montreal Canadiens are not.

What the Canadiens are is a gritty, never-say-die team with a core group of  excellent young players who may become the nucleus of a Cup contender one of these years.

But right now – in early November of 2013 – the Canadiens are undermanned and undersized.

They gave the Blues all St. Louis could handle. After an opening period in which the visitors looked to run the guys in red jerseys right out of the Bell Centre, the Canadiens battled back and took a lead they held into the final half of the third period.

But for a fluke goal, the Canadiens could have won the game in regulation. As it is, they came away with a point that might be valuable in April.

They were not, however, the better team in this game. Just look at the possession stats:

Through 65 minutes, St. Louis had 32 shots on Carey Price. The Blues missed the net nine times, and 15 Canadiens skaters combined to block an astonishing 38 shots.

That’s 79 times the puck left the stick of a player in a white jersey.

Comparable numbers for the Canadiens: 27 shots on Jaro Halak, five misses and the Blues blocked 11 for a total of 43.


That’s the football score if Alabama played McGill.

And stretches of the game looked that way. St. Louis is big, fast, skilled and very well coached. The Blues throw the puck around like it’s on a string. And when they lose it, they battle like junkyard dogs to get it back.

The Blues turned the puck over four times. The Canadiens, under relentless pressure, had a dozen giveaways.

Led by their captain, david backes, who had nine hits, St. Louis outwhacked the Canadiens 29-15.

The numbers don’t lie, peeps. St. Louis is good.

Let’s credit the Canadiens who weren’t intimidated by playing against a superior hockey team: Carey Price, Brendan Gallagher, Michaël Bournival, Lars Eller and Rene Bourque all played their hearts out.

Max Pacioretty continues to round into pre-injury form. Alex Galchenyuk, playing centre for his first full game at the pro level, struggled in the faceoff circle (1-6) but made some clever plays and will improve. Andrei Markov made fast, smart decisions with the puck against a team that takes away time and space.

There is no quit in the Canadiens. Despite 79 man-games lost to injury at this early stage of the season, with the exception of a 2-0 loss to mighty San Jose, they have yet to be beaten by more than one goal.

Some fine June evening in a year or two or three, we may see Carey Price facing Jaro Halak in a Cup final.

But who will be behind the Canadiens’ bench?

As is his wont, Michel Therrien’s in-game coaching produced a few head-scratchers:

• With the Canadiens nursing a 2-1 lead halfway through the third period, why did the coach deploy George Parros and Ryan White, each of whom was minus-3 in the Canadiens’ loss to Minnesota? The two fourth-liners added to their minus totals on the Chris Stewart goal that tied the game. How did the visiting coach, Ken Hitchcock, get Stewart Derek Roy and Vladimir Sobotka on against Canadiens’ fourth-liners?

• With the score tied 2-2 and the Canadiens on their first power play of the game, what was career AHLer Martin St. Pierre doing on the ice for 1:09 of the two-minut advantage?

• Why was a Norris Trophy-winning defenceman on the bench for the last four minutes of regulation time and most of the OT? Alex Pietrangelo played 30:49 for St. Louis, while P.K. Subban played 20:52.

Yes, P.K. was on the ice for Stewart’s game-tying goal. He was also on, and drew an assist, on the Rene Bourque goal that got the Canadiens back into the game.

P.K. had lessToI than either Josh Gorges or Raphael Diaz.

Gorges, OK.

But Raphael Diaz, FFS!

P.K. played only five minutes more than Douglas Murray and 55 seconds more than Francis Bouillon.

Murray! Bouillon!!


Montreal sports talk radio will be fun to listen to on Wednesday.


  1. Bill says:

    I think Parros has fought in every game he has played.

    That is not a sustainable pace.

    Most enforcers fight every fourth game or so.

    Why is Parros fighting every game?

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Why is he playing every game? Having him in the lineup last night was stupid.

    • Timo says:

      Yesterday’s fight was completely stupid. Faceoff, these 2 guys chatted and then dropped gloves. What did the fight accomplish? It did not rally the troops on either side, it was less than spirited, there was nothing to gain or lose. It’s not like either Reaves or Parros were running around trying to take out a skilled player.

      I don’t get it.

      • GrimJim says:

        It was worse than that. On the replay i saw that after Montreal won the draw, the dman let go a point shot that Halak misplayed and trickled through him and over the goal line but the Ref beside the net waved it off because of the fight. From the look of it, Halak hadn’t let up on the shot, it beat him. Maybe the blues defense let up and would have cleared the puck off the goal line, or tried to block the shot had the fight not happen but the shot was past Halak fair and square. Montreal would have had the tying goal earlier in the game.

    • shiram says:

      it’s only thing he does well.
      I thought he played ok in the first game, but not since.
      Obviously there is the injury, but that’s not stopping him from receiving punches to the face, so you have to figure he’s back to 100%.

    • Luke says:

      He has to distract you so you don’t notice he can’t play hockey.

  2. krob1000 says:

    34 years (December 20, 1978) is Markov’s bday….if the team signs him before his bday is it a “before 35” contract or is it during the seasoon in which he turns 35?

  3. Bill says:

    Timo, I am indeed extremely educated, but I am also an idiot, so don’t count on me

    • Timo says:

      There’s gotta be someone here who’s good at copywriting.

    • Timo says:

      How about this?

      A big smug Therrien face almost taking the entire page. Looking defiant, smug, “I know better than you” kind of face.

      In a background a subdued PK on the bench, maybe even a bit blurred out.

      Line: “Don’t let the Roy fiasco repeat” or something of sorts 🙂

  4. JM says:

    Lets face it we faced the best team in the NHL on offence and had to go to a shoot-out to decide it. If it wasn’t for the stupid shoot-out the blues would not have beat us. If you want your team to get the points deserved Tell Bettman get rid of the stupid shoot-out and today you wouldn’t be on here complaining about our Defence. when you can hold the best team on offence in the league to a shootout you’re defence must have played pretty good. Stop the foolishness. The shootout is what cost us the game not the Defence ….I don’t mind losing close games but I hate losing because of the stupid shoot-out.

  5. shiram says:

    One thing was evident last night, and that’s this team is not ready to part with Plekanec : Eller, Chucky and DD cannot replace what he brings to the team, yet.

  6. Luke says:

    To pause from the PK/MT-fest (and my own Parros hatred), I’d like to just mention that Pietrangelo is awesome.

    What a player.

    Too bad Hitchcock wasn’t hired by the Habs when he was available.

  7. J_P says:

    I dont want to harp on MT too much, as I never liked him to begin with so its useless. Ill give him credit for one thing, the team looks prepared to play every game. The habs have pretty much been in every game this year.

    Where MT leaves MUCH to be desired, is in managing the bench during the game. I could see him making an excellent assistant coach, but as a head coach he is terrible. His decision making mid-game is just awful.

    Also, the success of this franchise is going to rest heavily on PK, PRice and Galcheyuk. Galchenyuk and PK both look like theyre playing with very little confidence lately. Thats on the coach. Offensively gifted young players are always going to make defensive mistakes. The habs arent a cup contender. The coach has to let them make the mistakes and learn from them. Getting mad at them every time they make a mistake just ruins confidence and stifles their creativity.

  8. bwoar says:

    So Louis Leblanc & Martin St-Pierre sent down, who’s drawing back in?


  9. jrshabs1 says:

    Seems like we have a little bit of a French/English thing going with our beloved Habs. Franco coach doesn’t seem to like flamboyant Anglo player. Is P.K. getting too big for the team in M.T.’s eyes? Time for M.B. to step in and right his ship. I hope that’s it’s a French/English problem and not as black/white problem? BTW..the Toronto media is starting to jump all over this story…Why can’t the Habs employ the best man for the job?..Instead we get M.T. who is trying to use a cerebral approach…and failing badly. Is hockey defined by language?

    Go Habs Go!!

    • bwoar says:

      Why is it so hard to accept that PK needs coaching? Seems like a site full of people here who think the kid can do no wrong, never makes any peewee mistakes, and should just be left to go his merry way. It’s complete B.S. and the people spouting it are totally clueless.

      Language bias? Racism? Does anyone over 14 really believe that nonsense?


      • jrshabs1 says:

        uh oh..the nerve has been hit. bwoar sounds like a Rob Ford supporter. something stinks in MTL..and it’s more than your 2 cents bwoar.

        Go Habs Go!!

        • Strummer says:

          Your post was ridiculous.
          You make veiled references to racism with no evidence.
          Then you make reference to the idiot Rob Ford which has nothing to do with this team or this site.

          GO AWAY!

          “It’s just an opinion – I could be wrong”

    • Timo says:

      However, for a change, the Anglo is getting most of the support in the francophone community over the franco coach.

    • habsguru says:

      history aside, what’s the difference between a race or language dispute. may as well throw in religion too.

  10. Jocko says:

    So, negotiations between PK and Habs about to begin in next week or two. Interesting. I think the arm was bothering PK last night.

  11. jeffhabfan says:

    Tough loss to a strong team.P.K. HAS TO PLAY MORE. the coach uses the 4th line to much as they have been on the ice four almost every goal lately.They better win tomorrow night to stop the slump.

  12. gumper says:

    My biggest concern about how Subban is being handled is not Therrien’s apparently irrational focus on “improving” him as a player and human being, thereby creating a general impression that he feels everybody else is just fine. No. It’s the fact that the G.M. appears to be standing by watching the whole gong show unfold. It reminds me far too much of Roy, Tremblay and Houle. There is no other skater on the team who could be considered a star right now, and arguably hasn’t been since the days of Vinny Damphousse. Bergevin can ill afford to sit by and watch Therrien ruin PK. He has to intervene as it becomes increasingly apparent that Therrien’s PK-improvement project is going on the rocks. Personally I want the old PK back. Personally I want exciting firewagon hockey back in Montreal. Neither of these things can be accomplished by stifling your most exciting player.

    The rule is perfect: in all matters of opinion our adversaries are insane.
    Mark Twain

  13. Mondou6 says:

    I don’t understand the mentality of: “We lost to a good team, therefore it’s fine.”

    I’d rather we be the “good team” that other teams are ok with losing to.

    • gumper says:

      Amen brother. And you don’t get to be one of those good teams by playing mind games with your best player. As an example, look at how Hunter treated Ovechkin, and look at the result in Ovechkin’s play.

      The rule is perfect: in all matters of opinion our adversaries are insane.
      Mark Twain

    • Habsrule1 says:

      We’re not there yet. The young guys lookk good so maybe we see that transformation in a couple years?

      At the moment, like it or not, we are not elite, so if we can hang with the elite, we should be happy….not thrilled.

      Go Habs Go!!

      “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

  14. Sportfan says:

    Woah woah woah I think something said here was wrong! Way to much Credit to Mcgill they could not get 43 points against Bama.

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!

  15. The Juice says:

    I don’t get why a home team would elect to shoot first in a shootout.

    Odds are you are no going to score, which puts extra pressure on the goalie to make the 1st save.

    Flip it around and the goalie ususally makes the first save, taking the pressure off the shooter for his first shot.


    “To you from failing hands we throw the torch, be yours to hold it high!”

  16. HabinBurlington says:

    Clearly the prank of parking in MT’s parking spot didn’t go over well, thus the TOI for P.K. last night, it has to be that simple.

  17. shiram says:

    Further to my post about injuries not being a good reason to keep Subban off the PK, under Jacques Martin, Subban flourished on the PK and was a great factor on it.

    As Therrien came in he started to gradually diminish his PK time, and the PK’s efficiency diminished as well.
    It seems to be getting better now, and that’s good, but shouldn’t the Habs best D be played on the PK, even if just for learning purposes?
    If Subban still has issues playing the PK, he needs to be able to play it, and then the coaching staff can look to improve whatever they feel he is doing wrong.

  18. CH Marshall says:

    Blocking shots, GAA, all that stuff is good. But we need to score more goals! Can we start drafting snipers? We’ll need two of em for sure eventually if we want to get anywhere. Yes McCarron is big, but was there not anyone over 6′ and showed scoring potential? I guess Briere is going to have to pick up some scoring slack when back.

    • krob1000 says:

      I think the team has plenty of snipers…what it is missing is the grit right now. Prust, Moen and Emelin are all guys who cause turnovers and are steady defensively. They all win one on one battles nd wear down opping players throughout the game. Galchenyuk should be getting more shletered minutes again IMO. I wouldn’t mind seeing Eller with Galchenyuk and Bourque on RW. Let Dd have Pacioretty and Gallgher to see if it can get the fire burnig again. I think theyshould split both Markov/PK and Galchenyuk/Gallagher and spread things out and be harder to play against shift after shift.

  19. Max_a_million says:

    When you treat the best defenceman in the league like he is the 5th best on your team it leaves a mark. It’s usually a sign of an old guy falling off the wagon. People notice, PK is noticing. It’s certainly not nothing. It means you lose games and points too.

  20. montreal ace says:

    Does anybody know, how much a playoff game generates in revenue for the home team.

  21. Bill says:

    I could crowd-source the big bucks for the ad, but I guess we would never be able to agree on what we want it to say.

  22. The Jackal says:

    Kooch had a good point that we need to get a bonafide sniper/scorer.
    I think we can/should make a trade, as follows:

    I’d say these are the tradeables:
    Gorges, Diaz, Gionta, Moen – as in, have trade value.
    Then prospects – Pateryn, maybe one of Beaulieu or Tinordi – BUT ONLY IF elite sniper is coming to us (I would give one of those in a deal for an elite sniper, ONLY)
    Also other prospects/picks

    I think the Habs need to get two top guys. An elite sniper and a top 4, physical, stay at home, very reliable D man that can play 25+ minutes.
    Of course, this does not come easy or cheap. I expect such a move would cost 1st and 2nd rounders, a high level prospect, and a couple of roster players. But IMO it would be worth it.

    However, you may say that Beaulieu and Tinordi project to be very good defensemen, so I would hold back and I’d be happy to keep them. The only thing is we really lack an elite sniper – a natural goal scorer. We need a guy like James Neal and a guy like Wayne Simmonds. I’d happily take Kesler and Burrows in some kind of deal as well.

    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  23. Bill says:

    Dude, you may actually have finally lost your mind.

  24. desertman says:

    Marinaro is freaking out on TSN 690 right now…. its hilarious!

  25. Bill says:

    @MaritimeRonn: Plekanec was a safe choice, Bournival would have been an inspired choice. I am not saying he would have scored, because most penalty shots end in failure – a good SO artist has 20% success rate – but the fact that Therrien made the safe choice and not the inspired choice says a lot about how he thinks.

    • Maritime Ronn says:


      Plex SO percentage over the last 6 years is 13.6% (3 of 22)
      I prefer inspired or smart…and who blasted one by Halak late in the 2nd period?
      Why not give the guy that actually beat Halak, the chance to win the game?

    • fire2nv says:

      it was not a safe choice with Plekanec taking penalty shot , according to Toronto Sports Network Last Night it States in the rules that particular penalty shot has to be taken by the last player to have control of the puck not any player on the ice an the last player to have control of puck was plekanc !so it was not our wonderful coaches choice on who had to take it cause even the announcers on tsn were shaking there heads on that choice but then they read the rule out and said that it was plekanc who last had control of puck so he had to take it .

  26. The Dude says:

    So it’s 3-0 Halak over Carey Price and he’s 3 MILLION CHEAPER PER SEASON,well well well. Price played a good game but alas as always folded in the end and Halak” clutch as always” won the game for his team. EAT IT AGAIN PRICEBOTS 🙂

    • Timo says:

      Come on Dude. Me and you are usually on the same wavelength but this game was not on Price. You put Price on the Blues team and he wins the cup his first year there (a-la Roy). Habs are not just bad on defense, they are atrocious.

      Besides, on 4 penalty shots, how many time did Habs actually hit the net? I would rather have Price take a penalty shot than Pacioretty.

      • habsguru says:

        well the D that got to play were…

      • The Dude says:

        Halak plays clutch and is at this point 15 million cheaper over 6 years …one could say he’s a keeper. And even though Carey’s been much better so far this season ‘just starting to earn his keep” it ain’t over so…..

      • Mattyleg says:

        We let in 2 goals, and one of them was deflected 4 times.

        How does that equal bad defence?

        We can’t score goals, which is what is costing us games. We have one of the best GAA in the league.

        Yikes, Timo! It’s not like you to not only miss the boat, but fall into the harbour and thrash around in the swill there too!

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • The Jackal says:

          Matty, our defense is not costing us games (yet), and you are right we’re having trouble scoring – right now that is what we need to address.
          But in the long-run of the season, our D is gonna give us fits.
          I actually think we have done a good job of defending against the rush, and provided that we get to the puck first and take possession, we can move it up quickly and transition well. But this team gets killed whenever the opposition sets up and starts to cycle – it’s as if we have no idea what to do and we can’t clear it out. Luckily, St.Louis did squat with their possession game, but other teams will make us pay for that.

          Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      After the game I knew you would be happy, good for you Dude!

  27. shiram says:

    The Subban not on the PK thing because of risk of injury rings hollow to me, they have Markov out there, his 35 year old body, his reconstructed knees and it’s not issue for the coaches.

    No, that’s not the reason Subban does not play the PK.

    • The Jackal says:

      Markov is out there, but does he log the most PK time?
      Maybe it’s because Markov is better positionally?
      Just throwing ideas out there.

      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • DalEng says:

      The only logical reason I can see is PK being too aggressive and maybe taking a stupid tripping or holding penalty and the team going down to a 5-3

  28. Timo says:

    It is funny (not really) how year after year for the past 20 years Habs find themselves with a small core of good players surrounded by stiffs. To top that off, for the past 20 years Habs have never been afforded a benefit of a good management AND coaching team. One would think that eventually this organization would get lucky and land a good GM AND a good coach at the same time.

    It is so discouraging. This team never really moves forward. For each step forward there are always 2 backward steps. So what that Habs got 5-6 players who are “the future”? They got 15 others who are the past and should have stayed in the past. They got a GM who has not effing clue and is only concerned about protecting his own mistakes and a coach who is a borderline retard. How can anyone see anything positive in this situation is beyond me.

    • Cal says:

      That same thing can be said for 20 or more NHL clubs.
      Excepting the borderline comment, of course.

    • Max_a_million says:

      look at the 1997 roster … yikes Rejean Houle was really bad at his job. 🙁

    • habsguru says:

      that’s because their first agenda is not winning. do you think the blackhawks ownership cares what language this guy speaks, and what province that draft pick came from… they are so financially successful that it doesn’t matter, then again, so WAS research in motion!

    • DalEng says:

      Funny last year we could have argued that Bergevin and MT should have gotten GM and coach of year.

      Now somehow we have a GM with no effing clue.

      Bergy is a players GM he is awesome with the team. Think about him down in the tunnel when Parros got hurt. That is a GM every player wishes to have.

      • Timo says:

        Perhaps he could become a nurse then. Games are played on the ice. And unlike many, I was not among those who thought that Habs coach and GM were any good last year. My opinion of Bergevin and Therrien haven’t changed since… well… never.

        • DalEng says:


          The actions on the ice stem from everything that happens off the ice as well. I think of MB as a Billie Bean type GM from moneyball. He was definitely a players GM and very vocal with them. This is something you need in a GM unlike PG and his ways.

          “games are played on the ice” Your arguing yourself here. How can you be mad at MT then? not like hes on the ice playing the game. Maybe the players are not performing their tasks like they should be. Who knows maybe if everyone did exactly what MT had to say they would be winning.

        • DalEng says:

          Can’t believe you wouldn’t give MT and MB credit on finishing 2nd in the conference after everything they did..

          YET they start losing all of a sudden you like to point fingers at whos responsible for it.

          typical gloomy habs fan who thinks coaching and GM is a simple job.

      • Just a Habs Fan says:

        If you go back in time you will notice that any and all management of the Habs in recent times at least ( past 20 years ) have been very bad atr thier jobs…..well if the team wins 5 in a row they are all of a sudden very good at thier job…same for players….so give MB some time……let’s see what he does it’s only been just over a season….and not a full one at that. I know that is such a juvenille way of looking at it. I’m sorry.

  29. Bill says:

    Hmm. I wonder how much everyone on HIO would have to chip in to buy a sizeable ad in the Gazette asking Therrien to explain his negativity towards Subban? Or to send any kind of message.

    Just a thought.

  30. The Jackal says:

    Has anyone considered that perhaps PK played 20:52 last night – let’s call it 21 minutes – because he got hurt blocking a shot, and took a big hit which looked like a head shot later in the game?

    It makes perfect sense to not play him as much as a precaution. Why risk him being hurt to the point of injury? That would be a major loss, more so than losing in a SO.
    Also, we were on the PK a lot, since PK does not play on it – and commandant raised a good point saying it’s best for him so he does not have to block shots – it skewed the TOI distribution even more.

    And on that note, our PK is actually doing very well, so why change it and risk PK getting hurt, like he almost did tonight, blocking shots?

    The only really questionable decision on MT’s part tonight was St.Pierre on the PP – WTF was that about?

    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • commandant says:

      The decision i had the issue with is parros on the ice with 10:00 left in a one goal game. That was dumb.

      Go Habs Go!
      Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Perhaps a poor choice, but the three bodies which deflected the puck, none were Parros. I didn’t realize having someone other than Parros on the ice at that time would have changed the direction of the puck bounces. 🙂

        I don’t just seems like an unlucky break, but the anti MT venom is certainly gaining strength here these days.

        • The Jackal says:

          I think JM would be welcomed back at this point!
          Crazy eh?!

          Hockey sine stercore tauri.

        • commandant says:

          If the puck is cleared from the zone… the puck can’t bounce into the net.

          PK rung the puck around the boards earlier in the shift, and Parros wasn’t fast enough to get to the boards and get it out, instead a blues D kept it in at the line.

          Heres the thing… Yes it was a bad bounce. But when you are in your own zone and the puck is going to the front of the net, those bounces can happen. If the puck is in the other team’s end, its gonna take a trampoline.

          Go Habs Go!
          Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.

    • Ali says:

      okay, i’ll buy your premise. That doesn’t explain the 3-4 games previous where he’s had similar ice time, steadily down from the start of the year. Nor his lack of use in late game, lead protection situations.

    • habsguru says:

      because CH are losing games. could PK be the difference in the final minutes of the game??? couldn’t hurt to find out. losing with him sitting on the bench doesn’t help secure a playoff spot, does it? great wisdom to keep losing games to develop PK… just stupid

  31. joshua94k says:

    To the committee selecting the defense for Team Canada. Don’t let Therrien’s usage of Subban late in the games be a factor. Dismiss that as an example of an incompetent coach.


    Over the last three seasons, Subban has been on the ice for 1.95 goals against per 60 minutes at even strength. Players that’s better than? Let’s take a look, shall we?

    Dan Hamhuis, Alex Pietrangelo, Dan Boyle, Marc-Edouard Vlasic, Shea Weber, Drew Doughty, Nicklas Kronwall, Jay Bouwmeester, Francois Beauchemin, Duncan Keith, Dion Phaneuf, Erik Karlsson, Victor Hedman, and more.

    “I want to kill somebody cutting across the blue line and I want to score the goal and celebrate. And I’ll do it by any means possible to win a hockey game. That’s how I feel playing there (the Bell Centre). I am not sure I have that feeling anywhere else.” – PK Subban

    • The Jackal says:

      Stop drinking the MT-PK koolaid, it tastes like crap and it have absolutely no nutritional value. And yes, by that I mean it’s unsubstantiated bullshi- er, I mean, it’s nothing.

      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Coach Hitchcock is the assistant coach for Team Canada and the right hand man of head Coach Babcock.
      How do you think the live audition went last night concerning the “Trust Factor?”

  32. desertman says:

    Was at the game last night sitting with my fellow plebs in the rafters. Towards the end of the game when PK was no where in sight, I can tell you that the crowd was getting restless. At one point there was a PK chant starting because the fans wanted him on the ice. I just can not comprehend Therrien’s decisions with PK.

    Spoke to a buddy in the office this morning and we got into a huge argument over PK. He believes that PK is a defensive liability?!?!?! Therrien’s mishandling of PK is making ppl believe he actually sucks defensively which is just not true. PK is excellent defensively and even though he has the occasional brain fart, who doesn’t? Letang and Karlsson are significantly worse in the defensive zone and you don’t see their minutes getting limited.

    How is Subban supposed to get better if he doesn’t play more? How is he supposed to perform consistently and be reliable if he doesn’t have confidence from his coach?

    Therrien is really dropping the ball on this one…

  33. Habsssssssswin says:

    Positives :
    Shot blocking

    Negatives :
    Some No-shows .. you know who you are.
    Wrong players on ice at wrong times … MT
    Shootout inepitude.

  34. commandant says:

    Two quick things… people keep bringing up this “not on the ice in the last 4 minutes” thing. Do you realize that with six minutes left Subban played a shift that was 1:54 long? A nearly 2 minute shift? The guy was tired.

    Second the Rule book thing.

    TSN read the rule wrong. MT could have used any player on the ice. The portion read on the TSN broadcast only applies if its a breakaway.

    Go Habs Go!
    Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.

  35. Habitforming says:

    I swear MT is trying to help MB with PK’s contract negotiations or something. His ice time and his uses are so mind boggling that it is the only thing left that seems plausible without getting into racism/bigotry or alien intervention with the habs roster.

    Patches, who I love btw, is just coming back after missing a bunch of games and his timing is off a bit. He didn’t stand out much last night but still logged more ice than PK.

    I just don’t get it

  36. DJ says:

    I think MT prepares his teams well. His in game decisions are just awful. First, he has to have PK on at the end of the game, in 4 on 4 hockey and on the kill. He is the tems best defenseman. The Blues had there best on for almost half the game. End of story. The habs cannot afford to lose PK like they lost Roy. Second, he has to stop playing Parros. Blunden would be better for sure. Calll him back up. Once Moen and Proust are back, then it won’t be an issue.
    Third, PAcioretty is not a shootout guy. His stats are awful and he just came back from injury. What about the guys who actually scored last night or Eller????

    Otherwise, I think after the first, the Habs played well against a very good team. Price was strong yet again and gave his team a chance. A lucky bounce found its way to the back of the net.

    Have a great day everyone!

  37. Mattyleg says:

    Gallagher is the team’s best player, not Subban.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  38. shiram says:

    Habs are certainly not as bad as some make them to be, but they certainly are not an elite team yet, they are still a bubble team.
    They’ll win games they should not, and lose some they should have won, if they show a great effort like last night, we should be pleased.

    But there’s also alot of good change coming, for one this team is filled with young players, many around the 25 year mark, and plenty under it.
    Just 2 years ago, all we’d hear about is how old the team was.

    On a side note, is it just me or is Diaz really an awful shooter? For an offensive minded D you’d think he’d be able to shoot the puck at the net with some accuracy, but his shot seems to always miss the net wide.

  39. sCOTT1243 says:

    If I was MT:

    1) Tinordi and Beaulieu…welcome back.
    2) Bu bye Diaz, Jorges and the new guy, ya the guy who cant skate.
    3) Put white with Patches, cause patches is softer than my TP at home.
    4) Parros, you will only fight to protect and to intimidate. You will no longer play the staged fight game.
    5) Powerplay, put Parros right in front of the net and tell him not to move.
    6) Show everyone on the team that there isn’t a scary monster in front of the net. (Exception Gally).
    7) PK, stay out there till you puke.
    8) Penalty shots: Bournival, Gally, Galchenyuk, Gionta, Budaj. in that order.

    I’m done, freaken team kills me sometimes.

    • krob1000 says:

      The Parros fight was to protect….Reaves had just finished going after Murray…MT deployed Parros right off the bat.

      • Luke says:

        Yah, to protect (NAG) Murray from the soft bump into the boards at an offside?
        Big Tough Murray didn’t even react to it. Thats how much it bothered him.

        In fact, he got back at Reaves by scoring a goal! (Oh wait… he didn’t).

        • 2mins4lookinsooogood says:

          true that … I thought it was a pointless pre-text to go out and do what he had already planned.

          “Don’t crush that dwarf Alex Henry, hand me the pliers”

    • doc359 says:

      You would put Tinordi and Beaulieu in the situations that Gorges and Diaz face? Thats a recipe for destroying confidence if I ever heard one.

      Also, spelling names correctly goes a long way towards gaining respect

      • sCOTT1243 says:

        Yes I would. In a heartbeat. They can only get better. Will the few mistakes they will make be worse than what Diaz or “Josh Gorges” bring to the table (do I have your respect now 🙂 ) .

        Clearly we need to be bigger back there. Diaz and “Josh Gorges” have trouble moving anyone. Was Tinordi that bad? He showed us his capability in pre-season. My opinion he should have stayed.

        • doc359 says:

          Gorges has more than played like a top-4 defensemen. Just cause he isn’t big doesn’t mean he is a liability. He is a top-4 man on most any team in the league. Diaz is only in the top-4 due to injury. He isn’t physical, but deal with it, thats not his game. He makes a lot of great plays showing amazing hockey sense. He is a great top-6, PP guy who is playing his butt off filling in for Emelin. Tinordi and B might be great, but you need to give them time playing big minutes in the AHL so they can reach that potential

  40. third generation haber says:

    4 goals for Bournival…. will DD score 4 goals all year???

    j.p. murray

  41. Old Bald Bird says:

    Nobody likes AB but everybody likes JT. Here is her article on PK. Basically she observes that the pk was better under JM when PK played on it more. Obviously, she say more than this.


  42. Habsrule1 says:

    Habs played a good game and lost in a shootout.

    The end.

    On to the sens. They lost 5 in a row and now they have 1 win in a row. They are due to lose….and they will, but it’ll be close…2-1 maybe.

    Go Habs Go!!

    “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

  43. HabinBurlington says:

    So the TSN panel raised an interesting point I thought last night regarding Team Canada for the Olympics.

    Should Alex Steen be getting consideration for the team? He is afterall Canadian, a proud Pegger no less!

    Would be an excellent 4th line checking player who has the skillset to pot some goals.

    • Habsrule1 says:

      I think they corrected themselves stating that Steen plays on the Swedish team internationally.

      Go Habs Go!!

      “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

    • Kooch7800 says:

      I say why not. He is reliable defensively, and can score goals. If he keeps up this pace heading into the second half you should go with the hot hand.

      Hockey Canada is very much like the NHL in that is an old boys club so don’t expect that it happen.

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

  44. WindsorHab-10 says:

    I’ll keep posting it until it happens. Michel Therrien is not a NHL coach. Bergevin needs to swallow his pride & ditch this tool or PK Subban will seek employment elsewhere.

    • Habsrule1 says:

      As evidenced by our horrific 2nd place finish last season.

      Go Habs Go!!

      “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

    • Phil C says:

      I don’t think you need to worry about PK leaving. Whenever a star stops playing for a coach, the coach is turfed. It happened in Washington with Boudreau, in Tampa with Boucher, and it will happen with Therrien as well if he’s not careful.

      • Habsrule1 says:

        That’s a good point. People tend to think Of Roy vs Tremblay but Roy made the mistake of telling the President that he had played his last game for the Habs. Although I still think they could have handled it differently, they may have felt that their hands were tied.

        Not to mention I can’t see them making that same mistake. It set the team back a few years, and losing PK would have a similar effect.

        Go Habs Go!!

        “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

  45. Maritime Ronn says:

    A question for the HIO posters:

    With 49 seconds left in the game, a Penalty Shot was awarded to the Habs because Backes knocked the net off the pins.

    According to the NHL Rules, Coach MT had a choice to pick ANY player on the ice when the infraction occurred to take the Penalty Shot.

    Considering the forwards only, MT chose Plekanec over Gionta and Bournival.

    Anyone that has followed the Habs over the years knows that Plex is less than great on breakaways.
    As for Shoot Outs that mimic Penalty Shots, Plex is 3 for 22 in the last 6 years – not exactly numbers that instill fear….

    As for Bournival, this year he is tied for 2nd best Shooting Percentage of all Habs forwards…and had already blasted one by Halak in the 1st period.
    He ‘knew’ he could beat Halak, as he already had done.

    Bournival is now tied for 5th spot in goals scored by Habs forwards having played 2-3 less games and 84-154 ice minutes less than those ahead of him…and that includes roughly 25-30 minutes less of PP time to date.

    Why do you figure Plex was chosen?
    Who would you have chosen to take that Penalty Shot?
    From here, Bournival was the only choice…

  46. third generation haber says:

    All things considered (our current depth, the draft, our playoff readiness), where would u like to see the habs finish this season?

    A) A lottery pick
    B) A top ten draft pick
    C) 8th place
    D) Top 4 in the conf.
    E) Division Winner

    *I vote C, 8th place. If we can’t win a cup (not this year), I don’t care who we play in the first round.

    j.p. murray

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Honestly, if we are going to miss the playoffs I would rather be at the bottom and get a nice draft pick

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        There was a Lottery draft rule change.
        Every team that does not make the playoffs is now part of the Draft lottery


        It is weighted as the worst team now has a 25% chance of the Top pick.
        The 5th worst has 8.1% chance.
        The 14th worst has .5% chance.

        • Kooch7800 says:

          Sadly….it will be someone like Edmonton getting another top pick. It is getting insane. How many top five picks do you need to still be a last place team

          “Keep your stick on the Ice”

          • third generation haber says:

            Those picks represent 3 of their players and they are still very young. The fact that they haven’t added goaltending, defense, and toughness is the real problem. Edmonton is not losing because of their young gungs, they’re losing despite having them.

            j.p. murray

          • Kooch7800 says:

            I 100% agree that it isn’t the top picks that are causing them to lose it is a pathetic organization that doesn’t realize their holes in the line up to address them.

    • The Jackal says:

      8th place and snubbing laffs out of the final playoff spot 😀

      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • Cal says:

      A. When your team is losing and not competitive, it is what it is. Get the most losses and hope for the #1 pick. This will be tough to accomplish with the Sabres still in the league, but MT has a plan.

  47. Mattyleg says:

    You konw what?
    I don’t really care how we do against Western teams.
    It’s nice to get points, but I couldn’t give a crap.

    I want to see how we match up against our dvisional opponents. THAT will be the only real determining factor on whether we make the playoffs or not.

    We don’t have to be better than the Sharks, the Ducks, the Blues, or the Wild. We just have to be better than Ottawa, Tampa Bay, Boston, NYR, etc.

    And I have a feeling we will be.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • third generation haber says:

      But the best teams in the league reveal how we actually stand as a hockey team and how far we are from competing for the cup. It’s a reality check!

      j.p. murray

      • Mattyleg says:

        How far are the Blues from competing for the Cup?
        Reading Boone’s moaning, they are a shoo-in for the Cup.
        Looking at the standings, they are one place ahead of us, with three points more.

        We beat the Canucks, and destroyed Anaheim, who are #1 in their division. So that means that the reality check shows us that we are better than the best team in the Pacific division, and are Cup contenders.


        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • third generation haber says:

          We are 15 games in…..

          St. Louis was picked by the Hockey News to win the cup this year, they are a contender!!! We will not be anywhere close to them after 82 games.

          How could we survive a playoff series against them??? We’d have to block 300 shots. Could u imagine if DD and Briere were in the line-up???

          j.p. murray

          • Mattyleg says:

            We are 15 games in indeed.
            And the reality check (that you pointed out) shows that we’re looking very good!

            The hockey news picked us to finish 2nd to last last year.
            How could you take that rag seriously?!

            We will be tied with the Blues after 82 games.

            We would survive a playoff series against them very easily, as we survived against them last night, and they needed a lucky goal to get a point!

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

  48. Cape Breton says:

    Aside from #11, #76, #81 along with #79 & #27, not fun to watch this team. Five players with creativity and the rest play it much too safe. BORING !!!!!!!!

    • Mattyleg says:

      With the number of injuries we have (and have had) to key players, that’s the way we have to play.

      If you prefer, we could have terribly exciting games that we lose 5-2, 6-1, and 7-0… that would be exciting, eh? Lots of open ice, lots of end-to-end rushes… exciting!

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Kooch7800 says:

      In saying that welcome to a 30 team league with a Salary cap. you can have only so many stars and have to compliment them with filler. You just have to hope your stars are better than others along with your complimentary players

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

  49. Ali says:

    I’ve noticed that this team is not physical in the least. There was a dozen instances at least last night on the forecheck when Patches, Bourque, Eller could have hit someone, but they instead spin away. I’ve noticed ever since the Chara incident Max hits way less. I don’t know if that has made him timid, but he’s definitely less aggressive. But he played great otherwise, all over the ice, and maybe he’s still banged up. But you cannot be easy to play against in this league, just look to the other side of the ice and how the Blues pounded our defense every chance they got.

    The fact that the team came out with zero energy against one of the best teams in the league is embarrassing.

    Playing Frankie Bouillon and Douglas Murray way more than they should and limiting PK’s icetime is not utilizing your players to the best of their ability. Bouwmeester makes a brutal turnover that leads directly to a goal and still plays 30 minutes. Subban has been at 20 for the past few games. Way to have your players back.

    The use of Parros/4th line with a lead and 10 minutes to play is inexcusable.

    I wonder if Therrien admitted that was a mistake in his press conference afterwards? Did he call himself out?

  50. boing007 says:

    All things considered, the Habs could have won the game.

    Richard R

    • Kooch7800 says:

      St louis is a good team. They should have went further in the playoffs last year but they ended up against LA who plays a very similar style.

      Habs are not at that level just yet. Our D will be strong and with Price in the net we are not in bad shape for the future but we def lack offense and there is nothing on the farm that inspires change in the near future. Some of our D assets will have to be moved for some forwards

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

      • doc359 says:

        You see the Gally’s, Max-Pac, Bournival and Eller, not to mention LeBlanc, Thomas, Andreghitta (sp?), and Collberg, and think that we won’t have a good offense going forward?

        • Kooch7800 says:

          Honestly, most of the guys you mentioned are a crap shoot.

          The Gally’s yes, we know they will be good. Max P is also a decent 20 plus goal guy. Bournival is a pleasant surprise this season but will he be able to maintain this level of offense? I am not sold on Leblanc being more than a third liner, Thomas I don’t think will ever make it and Colberg hasn’t played well this year and also didn’t impress me at all in the preseason.Sven Andrighetto is also a guess. he is doing ok so far in the AHL but he is also an undersized forward.

          Eller to me is also extremely streaky and his play really falls off. I am not sold he will ever be more than a 50 point guy. He had a great start this year and has vanished the last few games

          • doc359 says:

            Max has already put up 30 goals in a season, while quite young, and is a very high-volume shooter, which translates well too high scoring (which he has done).
            I can’t honestly believe you would put Gallagher ahead of him in terms of impact on the offense. I love them both but Max is possibly an elite power forward for us when he is healthy.

          • Kooch7800 says:

            Gallagher is a great top 6 forward and the Gally’s have carried this teams offense this year. Gallagher was also one of our best players when the chips were down in the playoffs.

            I never said he was better than Max P but I will be interested to see where he is when he hits 24 where max is

            “Keep your stick on the Ice”

  51. third generation haber says:

    “I want to kill somebody cutting across the blue line and I want to score the goal and celebrate. And I’ll do it by any means possible to win a hockey game. That’s how I feel playing there (the Bell Centre). I am not sure I have that feeling anywhere else.” – PK Subban

    Imagine we had an entire team that played wih this much intensity! Only Gallagher can match it and Bournival may do so too.

    Get rid of the F%&$@$G cream puffs!!! Even if u have to pay them to stay home!
    j.p. murray

  52. FANHABULOUS says:

    Ok, so we’re all talking about how MT should be using PK more… just like the other stud #1 D in the league, PK should really be playing in the 27-30 min range, and in all situation including the last minutes of a tight game. I won’t go into this too much more, cause I think everyone’s covered it pretty well.

    Here is my issue with MT’s coaching, which is reflected in the teams system this year: has anyone noticed that, whereas we started the year (and last) playing an uptempo, offensive, skating style, taking more chances by being creative (especially in the offensive zone), that we’ve been playing back on our heels a lot more these days. And not just against the Blues or Sharks, I feel like most of the guys are mandated to just make the “safe” play, get it out of our zone, and dump it into theirs. I want to pull my hair out every time I see Gio/Pleks/Max/anyone cross the blue line and throw a meaningless puck at the goalie, with nobody in front and no chance of doing anything else with it.

    I mean, what happened to creativity? Making a pass through some legs to hopefully generate a dangerous chance? I feel like that side of the game has been sucked out of this team, and guys are afraid to turn over the puck trying to make a creative play. Anyone else notice this?

    “You will not regret picking me” – PK Subban.

  53. rhino514 says:

    I believed at the beginning of the season that as long as the team could play around fivehundred until emelin got back, it would be in pretty good shape for the rest of the season.
    I think I definitely overestimated Emelin´s importance to the team when saying this; however, what I said holds true for a number of other reasons.
    The team has remained competitive not only with our toughest defensive Dman out, but with Paciorholding and Prust out for considerable strectes as well.
    The injuries also gave a chance to Bournival to establish hiimself as a top nine forward; it is still to be seen wether he can continue his good play, but the signs are encouraging.
    Lastly, the team was not only holding its own until very recently, but actually was playing pretty good hockey and had one of the best goal differentials in the league. They are on the losing end of most one goal games so far, which could even out over the course of the season. Subban playing his worst hockey of the season over the last few games seems to have been a bigger factor than injuries, which is also encouraging because i firmly believe he will get out of his funk soon. Also, the team D, the biggest question mark going into the season, has actually been ok without the Russian Tank, and Price has been good overall. Markov also seems to have gained half a step from last season and Gorges is playing better as well. The dip of Deshrnais has ocurred at our deppest position and he wasn´t really part of our building blocks going forward (though i hope he recovers, on a persona level)
    So all in all, very encouraging signs, if we can just tread water for 3 or 4 more games, we have a talented, hard working team going forward.

  54. Bill says:

    Sorry, I just can’t be as pessimistic as some of you about the Habs today.

    Once again, they lost by a single goal – shoot out this time – to a very good Western team. They were competitive, had a game plan, and the breaks went against them.

    The St. Louis goals were some bad luck. Murray completely lost it, Backes threw it out quick, and Steen isn’t making many mistakes these days. The deflected thing goal … It happens.

    The Habs are right in the thick of things. Tied for fifth in the East and only five points out of first.

    As for the coach … would I have had the fourth line out in the third protecting that lead. Well no. And would I or anyone else in the world have used Subban more? Yeah.

    But it’s a tough league and our team is right in the mix. They need to get Emelin back and start playing some games against the Eastern conference and then things will be brighter.

    • Luke says:

      I agree Bill (and Jackal).

      I wonder how many of the “MT has no clue” crowd expected a Habs win, or wouldn’t have taken a shootout loss to the Blues prior to puck drop.

      Great shot by the league’s leading goal scorer, bad bounces on the second and Parros stealing one.

      There’s the game right there…

      • Mattyleg says:

        “Therrien sucks! We’re going to get destroyed tonight! Just watch, and it’ll be because Therrien sucks!!” (3hrs later) “We lost in a shootout and could have won the game!! Therrien sucks!”

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Eddie says:

      Usually the difference in one goal games comes down to details.

      Which team is better focused on the small things that can change the outcome.

      That’s why having Parros out there with 5 minutes left, or over playing St Pierre on the power play, we’re highlighted by Boone.

      To the average fan this seems like nit picking.

      But tight games are won and lost on these moves.

    • shiram says:

      After looking lost for most of the 1st, the Habs did indeed come back and battled hard.
      But they were clearly the inferior team last night, be it because they were outshot so much, because they could not seem to stay in the o-zone for extended periods of time and could not win faceoffs.

      Puck possession seems to be an issue.

    • Phil C says:

      “The deflected thing goal … It happens.”

      The problem with that goal was Shattenkirk had a wide open shooting lane. Parros couldn’t fill the lane quick enough. I see that as a huge breakdown in the defensive zone coverage. You can’t give teams wide open looks like that. Parros has to get close enough to at least make the play more difficult for the defenseman. Parros is not good enough right now unfortunately. Maybe he’ll get better, but it will be tough to watch. I think he could have used a conditioning stint in the AHL.

  55. The Jackal says:

    Repost from last night:

    “F*#$&# HALAK!

    Angry outburst done.

    This is gonna get buried in the throng of inane negative comments, but here it goes anyway.

    Habs played a solid game, but a flukey goal did them in.
    The D was actually decent – they defended well against the rush but their problem is clearing the zone – they suck at it.
    Price had a great game, and we made the right move keeping him.
    The Blues are a good team but they are not great.

    They out-possessed us but barely did anything with the puck. They seemed to lack finish and a killer instinct and could not put the game away even when they were dominating in the O zone.
    The Habs pushed back and had some flashes of greatness, but again, we are a work in progress.

    Nonetheless, we played a good game, it was exciting and it was unfortunate that we lost. The shootout is a bad way to lose but whatever, can’t say we were not in the game and that we did not have a chance to win – but maybe that’s what makes it a bitter pill.”

    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  56. joshua94k says:

    Jay Bouwmeester has a giveaway that leads to a Bournival goal which puts the Canadiens in the lead at the time. What does St. Louis coach Ken Hitchcock do. Does he bench Bouwmeester, does he call him out to the media after the game? Does he make silly comments that Bouwmeester is still learning.

    Bouwmeester went on to play 29:06 minutes.

    The top offensive player for the Canadiens, who is their best defenseman and probably the league, hardly played during the final minutes and most of OT.

    With the likes of Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Bourque, Eller, Bournival, Pacioretty, Gionta, Plekanec on the team, why was St. Pierre on the only power-play.

    Why is Therrien the coach of this team?

    Why didn’t the media ask these questions after yesterday’s game?

    “I want to kill somebody cutting across the blue line and I want to score the goal and celebrate. And I’ll do it by any means possible to win a hockey game. That’s how I feel playing there (the Bell Centre). I am not sure I have that feeling anywhere else.” – PK Subban

  57. krob1000 says:

    Galchenyuk needs a new shootout move…I noticed last year that all of his great shootout goals were that same move….and Halak looked well aware too. When he lined up all I could think was “do something different please”…and when he didn’t I realized that the book is out on him…time to add a few new chapters

  58. Luke says:

    I’d just like to know if Parros is even aware of what happens on the ice between the whistles?

    Second time in two games his boneheaded fights have cost the team quality scoring chances. He stymied a promising PK rush and killed what might have been (was) a goal.

    I thought the point of these fighters was to keep players honest and respond to dirty hits. All I’m seeing are one dimensional trying to keep each other employed.

    Maybe his actions kept PK off the Olympic team.
    He proabbly stole the only goal that Murray would have scored this season.
    But he has a nice moustache and uses his fame to raise money for charity. So that’s good, but I’d trade him to the Swiss league for Robbie Shrempf right now and try to win hockey games.

    Wouldn’t it have been nice to see that guy in last night’s shootout?

  59. third generation haber says:

    I believe Murray will settle in after a few games and bring the hard-nosed factor to our D. I remember Hall Gill being booed in his first 20 games before he became a rock for us. He also take care of business if anyone messes with our young guns.

    j.p. murray

  60. JM says:

    Except for Bournival. This team is no better than last year. The players MB brought in is a complete waste of money we could have used on contracts coming up next year!!
    The only good thing I have seen so far from MB. He never gave away any of our prospects. Gotta thank him for that at the same time he hurt the team in other ways ….

    • Habsrule1 says:

      Well, Price seems to be better. Eller started off better and Gallagher is somehow even better. With Emelin back, the team will be better as well.
      Again, hard to be better than 2nd in the coference, but the team is on track. In 2-3 years, the Habs may very well be a contender.

      Go Habs Go!!

      “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

    • third generation haber says:

      Almost correct; he traded Kristo for yet another midget.

      j.p. murray

  61. Curtis O Habs says:

    The team should have the option of penalty shot or power play.

  62. Mattyleg says:

    Those PK absences lead me to the idea that he is perhaps being punished for not following a team strategy/game-plan that we’re not aware of. It’s difficult to coach to a pre-set strategy if not all players are following the script, and it’s hard for players to adapt if they are trying to deal with deviations from what they expect.

    This isn’t necessarily about PK being ‘reined in,’ or ‘held back’, it’s more about him following the strategy established by the coaches.

    Don’t forget, there are three coaches behind the bench, and it might not necessarily be Therrien calling the shots on PK. Daignault has a lot of say in things, as does Gallant. I’m not defending Therrien, exactly, as he is the one with whom the ultimate responsibility lies, but don’t forget that there is a coaching team.

    I can’t think of any other reason why a coach wouldn’t put one of his best players out under those circumstances. We’ve seen Therrien double-shift PK at the ends of tight games in the past.

    It’s all I can think of.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  63. boing007 says:

    Time for a new coach. Au suivant!
    Vive Jacques Brel!

    Richard R

  64. krob1000 says:

    IF I could make some changes the first thing I would do is break up the PK Markov pairing. Crazy isn’t it? I know they are 1-2 in being on the ice for goals scored for…but I think the team needs more balance on the back end. What this may also mean is that which ever forward line gets the fortune of playing the most with them is the forward line that will likely produce the most. This leads to an unbalanced and even easier team to defend IMO. Diaz is playing well enough that I think he could play with Markov easily enough and fortunately Emelin is returning soon also but I see that pairing as fantastic (Markov and Subban)…but that is not to be expected…as they are both stud dmen but I think it starves the balance and really challenges 2 out of every three lines offensively when that does not have to be the case.

    Think of it this way….as is we have Markov and SUbban on the ice together for approx 25 mins a night…split up we could have one of them on the ice for 45-50 minutes of every 60…me…I take that option

    • Phil C says:

      I agree with you in principle. Almost anyone can play with Subban and be effective. The problem is who to play with Markov. Diaz-Markov or Gorges-Markov has not looked good together in the past for whatever reason, while Gorges-Diaz has worked. Unless they trade for a defensemen to play with Markov or use Emelin again with im, the current pairings seem to have the most success.

      • krob1000 says:

        Groges has to play his other side and he struggles enough witht he puck, Diaz has looked much better of late adn so too has Markov;’s skating. I think it could work now. Markov needed to get his legs going and it appears Diaz did as well. Emelin can play his offside with Markov if need be or he could paly with Diaz. Ot sure of the plan but I would rather have one of PK and Markov on the ice for nearly the whole game.

  65. JM says:

    Wait till Ottawa beats us tomorrow night. Than this site will be on fire.

  66. Old Bald Bird says:

    EOTP writes an open letter to MT. I know, it’s AB on EOTP, but it’s a point of view.

  67. DalEng says:

    I was never going to post this because after winning Norris Trophy I didn’t think much of it and after a great start to this season.

    In the summer I heard from a reliable person that someone in the organization believes the habs will never win a championship with PK on the team.

    There must be something we are missing folks, PK has constantly been through this with every coach. At what point do you say OK its not the coach.

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      Not at this point, for darn sure.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I think a fair question, but one that most here will not entertain.

      • Kooch7800 says:

        It is a fair question. Cause I think he has had issue with coaches all the way up. In saying that he is our best player. I would like to see him used better but I understand if MT is making a point but they also need to win hockey games.

        I have a bad feeling this team will be on the outside looking in come playoff time

        “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • CH Marshall says:

      must be a ‘character’ thing

    • Habsrule1 says:

      OMG….sounds like a very reliable source alright. I’d guess that the “someone” in question will go before PK. There’s no way we’re having a Roy, part 2. Geoff Molson will not let that happen.
      I know Molson doesn’t get involved, but at what point does he step in for his investment and ensure PK is treated properly?

      Go Habs Go!!

      “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

    • third generation haber says:

      Problem is he is the best player we have….

      j.p. murray

    • Luke says:

      While I’m not saying so, it is a fair point to make.

      I have a buddy who has always had bad neighbors. One day while he was, once again complaining about his neighbors, I asked him if he was sure it was them that was the bad neighbor?

      He’s lived in different buildings, houses, cities & Provinces. Yet he always finds neighbors that he has problems with. Only one thing, in all of his situations, remains constant. He’s the bad neighbor.

  68. Thomas Le Fan says:

    I stand by my comment right after the play and still say that first goal shouldn’t have been allowed. Cross check from behind says it all. If it had have been us, it would have been waved off and the other team would have been on the PP.
    And, along with many others, I hate shootouts!!!

    And I’m starting to wonder where Therrien is coming from, as well.

    There is no crying in baseball, “i” in team or “chuck” in Galchenyuk but … there is fighting in hockey.

    • krob1000 says:

      IF you look at the second goal too Stewart ties of price’s stick and blocker hand and drags it across the crease…where the puck goes in? right around where his blocker should be. Maybe wouldn’t have stopped it but I have seen goalie interference for less

    • rljmartin says:

      Agree with you on the crosscheck, no doubt about it but this game was lost by MT. Yes Habs are small and get manhandled and other teams are either given or take liberties with them. Backes, what a goon…

      game was for the Habs to win. From the second period to mid third period, Habs out-skated the Blues and all was looking good until MT blows it.

      Feel sorry for Subban, takes a boarding hit like that and no one comes to his defense. Is that the team MB and MT want? Screw the point or even 2 points…. You can’t let that happen to your star player… then again, maybe they don’t share the same opinion as most here at HIO.

  69. JM says:

    Each team should have gotten a point. A excellent game like that. Both teams playing their hearts out and decide it in a shoot out. What a joke …. why don’t they bring in a rule. Each period a player of each team is allowed a break away wouldn’t be any different.
    what a joke this shoot out is and they call the NHL professional. It’s like pond hockey. If were tied or no score after 60 minutes lets send 6-players one at a time out on the ice to shoot at the Goalie who ever scores the most goals win. Joke ….

    • Mattyleg says:

      Sadly, a game that was begun by the English (they were the predominant group of sportsmen in Montreal at the time) who accept ties as an outcome, has been fundamentally altered by the Americans who insist on having a winner.

      The idea that there should always be a winner and a loser is typically naive thinking, and typically American. I don’t mean that in a pejorative way, but the nation is built on the myth of ‘winners’ and ‘losers’. Make a lot of money: you ‘win’. Poor or on the edge? You ‘lose’. Even the American War of Independence wasn’t ‘won’. After the war, the British still refused to recognize the American state, and they had to have another (equally indecisive) war in 1812 for Britain to recognize them.

      We should still have ties.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

  70. 44har48 says:

    What did I miss in the offseason that would make me believe that this team would be able to 1) stay healthy and replicate it’s regular season success of last year’s short season, and 2) actually have the size and capability to win in the post season?

    Last nights game was no surprise, other than they almost actually won after being outplayed as they should by a much better team, and our coach’s brain farts or playing around.

    Don’t get me wrong, this is the most optimistic I have been about the Habs since long before there last Cup win (which still surprises me), they have major young talent to build around finally, but this group simply is not built to win against serious contenders night in and night out yet. We can pick on MT and the refs or whoever, but in the end, a mid pack team is just that.

  71. krob1000 says:

    Tema was outshot 32-27….randonly firing pucks from everywhere around th3e rink does not count as shots. Montreal could do that too if they wished too….they do not wish to do that…partly because of the makeup of the forward group and also becuase they prefer to play possession in the offensive zone and neutral zone. There are two distinct Montreal systems at play…on offense they play a possession game..or try to and on defense they play a collapsed defense that protects the interior and trust Price to stop the outside stuff. These two strategies combined will almost always result in this who shots directed thing being skewed even on the Habs best night.

  72. third generation haber says:

    Excellent analysis ladies and gents (no sarcasm).

    I’ll add to the chaos,

    Perhaps wants to keep PK in-line to keep his teammates happy, who were clearly unhappy with him a couple of years ago. I’m no fan of his decisions, but, on a day like today, we just don’t have the players needed to deal with St. Louis; they’re a contender and it took many years to put them together.

    St. Pierre:
    He is not a kid! He’s 30! 3 other teams already gave-up on him because he is not an NHL hockey player! I understand him as a short-term call-up, but Wake the F.U. M.T.!!

    May have lost a step, but he was brought in to stop the blood shed in our goal crease. Teams have been charging through our crease unpunished for too long b/c we continuously play softies like Diaz, making Murray a necessary evil.

    What do u call a soft d-man who doesn’t create big offensive numbers? A career AHLer. Regardless of their skill, hard-work, and character, there’s a reason women don’t play in the NHL.

    DD and Briere:
    Is there anyone in all of explored space who believes these two cream puffs should take Bournival or Leblanc’s spot??? NFW!!!

    Doesn’t appear to have a clue what he’s doing (DD, Briere, Kristo), but he also inherited the smallest team in hockey. We talk about being too small, but just a couple of seasons ago, Moen was the only muscle we had. Why is it that so many fans can instantly recognize his mistakes and he requires a few months to figure it out? disturbing…

    We’re not bad enough of a team to tank to the bottom, but falling to 8th might be ideal. Our youngsters could gain some play-off experience and we’d still draft in a decent spot.

    j.p. murray

    • krob1000 says:

      Diaz played a great game and has been very good of late. Not sure why people don’t like him but for what he makes vs what he brings he is definitely an asset. IMo Diaz was a star of the game last night and I mean that….he played very good against a big strong and fast team.

      • third generation haber says:

        It’s black and white to me, like top 6 and bottom 6 forwards. You’ve got your offensive d-men who put up points (Subban and Markov), and your physical d-men who defend and make life hell for the opposition (Gorges, Emelin). Diaz is neither of these, so I can’t wait till he gets replaced. On a much tougher team, his softness would go unnoticed, but on this team the softies are glaring.

        j.p. murray

        • krob1000 says:

          Diaz is as effectively defesnively as Gorges, costs less and is better puck mover and is a viable pp option. There are 3 pairings and every one should have someone who is able to get the puck to the f’s on the move and create space for themselves to break an aggressive forecheck. Gorges is always high off the glass…..pretty frustrating if 4 of your 6 dmen play that way and even moreso if your ONLY 2 puck movers(if you remoive Diaz) are on the same pairing…

          • third generation haber says:

            Great analysis, but I don’t see Diaz as being as strong as Gorges defensively; he’s timid and gets pushed around. In last year’s playoffs I thought he was going to wet himself.

            I’ve always thought Gorges to be a good first passer, not sure why we can’t spot the open man coming out of our end this year. It may be more of a team problem.

            j.p. murray

  73. John Q Public says:

    MT was hired to be the fall guy.
    Bring back the zones and ties.
    What happened to Hitchcock. Last time I saw him he was smaller.

  74. Old Bald Bird says:

    Why do we get set saddled with headstrong coaches, who are always headstrong in the wrong area? And where are our flock of assistant coaches? Do they just nod their heads?

  75. krob1000 says:

    Also, re this posssession a d shots directed at net crap. The Habs employ a protect the house defensive metality, meaning they focus on keeping the opposition outside the tops of the circles and outside the dots. This means they surrender the perimeter and only have one guy pursue in most cases. How does the opposition respond in this situation? Well first of all they will have the puck longer and be able to keep possession longer and second they will repeatedly try to penetrate the defense by firing poor angled shots towards the net. The Canadiens did a masterful job of fronting their man down low and getting in front of shots and blocking lanes. I would not view this as getting dominated.

    Where the difference was noticeable is on the one on one battles to break up that perimeter play and creat a turnover…the Habs are missing Moen, Prust and Emelin all of whom are very good in breaking this type of thing up as the man chasing. However,
    I would not look at those shots directed numbers without considering therse things.

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