About last night …


That might have been the best goaltending performance at the Bell Centre since the 2010 playoffs.
I hesitate to use the adjective, lest it bring the trolls and second-guessers crawling out of the woodwork, but Carey Price was positively Halakian Tuesday night.
Thing is, Price’s 44 saves did not come against the likes of Alexander Ovechkin and Sidney Crosby, superstars memorably stoned in that amazing playoff run.
Tampa Bay was missing its superstar forward, but the Lightning still managed to bombard Price.
The visitors were full value for the two points they took.
And were it not for Price’s heroics, the Lightning would have won easily in regulation time.
As it was, the Canadiens salvaged a point on the strength of their brilliant goaltender.

Through two periods, the Canadiens had a grand total of 13 shots on goal – six of which were off the stick of P.K. Subban (he finished with eight). No other Canadien had more than one shot through 40 minutes.

The night after being shut out in Boston and losing Steven Stamkos, the Lightning played a textbook road game.

They grabbed an early lead on Ryan Malone’s goal five minutes into the game, then skated, battled and checked the Canadiens into the ice until the final five minutes of the third period, when the allegedly home team got a fluke goal from Daniel Brière to send the game into OT after the Canadiens played shorthanded for the last 1:06 of regulation time.

Then there was another penalty in OT, which resulted in something I’d never seen since the new tie-breaking format was introduced: Because the Canadiens were two men short, the OT became 5 Lightning skaters against three defenders.

And Price held the fort. He raised his save percentage to .933 and lowered his goals-against average to 2.12 – spectacular numbers, especially when you look at what’s playing in front of him.

The Canadiens allow 31.5 shots per game, 22nd in the NHL. They’re 18th in shots per game, at 30.2. And these numbers have been trending in the wrong direction through the last few weeks.

There’s help on the way. Alexei Emelin is expected to be back in the lineup when the Canadiens play host to the Rangers on Saturday, and that will likely create a pressbox seat for Francis Bouillon, who is a team worst minus-9 while playing a ridiculous 17 minutes per game.

Of course, Michel Therrien – who was Frankie Boo’s junior coach in Granby – may decide Emelin’s return means a pressbox seat for Douglas Murray. The latter, however, is a hitter, a shot-blocker and a Gillesque asset on the penalty-kill.

The player whose return can’t come soon enough is Brandon Prust. His absence was particularly noteworthy on a night when, from the opening puck drop, Tampa Bay’s compete level exceeded that of the passive, soporific home side.

“We created some offence in the third period because we played with some urgency,” Therrien said. “But I am not impressed.”

Nor was the customary sellout crowd. Boos rained down from the upper reaches of the stands during numerous sequences when the visiting team dominated puck possession.

Credit to Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper for rallying his troops in the wake of Stamkos’s injury. The Lightning wanted this W more than the home team, which generated little offence, other than Subban’s lasers, and did not exert much in the way of aggressive forechecking.

Trailing 1-0 in the third period – and with fans growing restive – the Canadiens played a 1-2-2 formation better suited to lead protection. I’ll leave it to Chris and the other Commentariat Coaches to explain that.

The EGG line had its moments, particularly late in the third period when Brendan Gallagher and Alex Galchenyuk began crashing the net. Ben Bishop had a quiet evening to that point. The Canadiens forced the giant goaltender into quick lateral moves maybe three times all night long, while Price was sliding miles to cope with Lightning shots coming from every direction.

The Canadiens are clinging to an Eastern Conference wild-card playoff spot despite losing five of the six games they’ve played in November. The rest of this month’s schedule includes three sets of back-to-backs – including two visits to Washington and Bell Centre dates with the Rangers, Pittsburgh and Toronto.

It doesn’t get any easier.

And the goaltender can’t play any better. 

• 45 shots was the most Price has faced since the Hurricanes had 44 last March 7 in Carolina. He stopped 42 of them and the Canadiens won 4-2.

• Great stat tweeted by Cam Charron: With P.K. Subban on the ice tonight against Tampa, Montreal out-shot the Lightning. 17-11. When he was off, it was 24-3 for Tampa Bay.




  1. HABSNFO says:

    A few questions. Is Rene Bourque a top 6 forward? No
    Why was Larry Robinson not hired as an assistant? Will this team make the playoffs? Don’t think so
    finishing 9th won’t help at the draft

  2. SteverenO says:

    Those that have been reading my posts , are well aware that I am not a fan of coach Therrien. I am especially disappointed in his management of special teams TOI.

    That being said I have defended Therrien’s decision of leaving PK off the PK unit. While I believe that PK has the skill to be a top-notch penalty killer, I personally would rather see him used more at even strength and on the PowerPlay.

    leaving him off the ice in overtime however, whether shorthanded, even strength, or the PowerPlay can NOT be justified.

    During the game, unless its near the end and your team is trailing, the primary duty of the PK unit is to kill penalties. In overtime, that changes. Put someone on the ice that at least gives your team a chance to score a goal. That means no Murray, no Bouillon, No Gorges, and no Moen and no Ryan White.

    Here is a look at this seasons PK numbers:

    Team overall: 118 MIN SH TOI – 10 GA — AVG – 11.8 MIN per PP GA

    Gorges: 62 MIN SH TOI – 6 GA — AVG – 10 MIN per PP GA
    Diaz: 60 MIN SH TOI – 4 GA — AVG – 15 MIN per PP GA
    Markov: 49 MIN SH TOI – 4 GA — AVG – 12 MIN per PP GA
    Murray: 18 MIN SH TOI – 0 GA — AVG – — MIN per PP GA
    Bullion: 17 MIN SH TOI – 1 GA — AVG – 17 MIN per PP GA
    Subban: 14.5 MIN SH TOI- 4 GA — AVG 3.6 Min per PP GA


    Plekanec: 52 MIN SH TOI – 5 GA — AVG – 11 MIN per PP GA
    Moen: 33 MIN SH TOI – 5 GA — AVG – 6.7 MIN per PP GA
    WHITE : 30 MIN SH TOI – 2 GA — AVG – 15 MIN per PP GA
    Eller : 26 MIN SH TOI- 1 GA — AVG 26 Min per PP GA
    Gionta; 26 MIN SH TOI- 2 GA — AVG 13 Min per PP GA
    Prust: 21 MIN SH TOI- 2 GA — AVG 11.5 Min per PP GA
    Pacioretty: 18 MIN SH TOI- 1 GA — AVG 18 Min per PP GA


    Steve O.

  3. Bansaw says:

    Some thoughts on last night’s game:

    Excellent effort by Price, in front of Canada’s GM no less. Not sure if Stevie Y was feeling the effects of the Chelios after-party, but he had to take notice of Price last night. I would have loved to see PK bury one in OT to solidy his case as well.

    Bourque, braindead penalty with less than 3 mins to go. This guy is a trick or treat star in the mould of AK46. His effort and physical intensity are a roller coaster.

    Take note of who was on for the 4-on-3 and 5-on-3 in OT. Pleks , Moen, Markov; then Pleks, Diaz, Gorges. Speaks highly of their collective value to the team. I would like to see PK out there, but can’t argue the results.

    Finally, no DD. The biggest reason? He stinks in the face-off dot and loses too many battles, particularly in his own zone. The scoring can be replaced by others, but he cannot hold a spot on this team without a skill, beyond effort, to rely on when he doesn’t score. Pleks contributes up and dwon the ice in so many facets, as Eller is starting to do. DD would be wise to become a Yanic Perrault type specialist on face-offs. Will prolong his career and help him avoid trips to the pressbox when he doesn’t score.

    Excellent effort from TBay as well. This team and their coach look like they are for real.

    • Trollhunter says:

      It was a bad penalty taken by Bourque for sure, but I really don`t get people bashing his effort in games. His point production is inconsistent but I don`t see him half-assing it. I guess I`m not watching the same game as you guys.

  4. subbaniac76 says:

    We don’t want pk blocking shots- pk is the best skater on the team and why Murray would be out there instead of pk is beyond me..

  5. 100HABS says:

    moved to new thread…

  6. habsguru says:

    MT shouldn’t feel too secure with Gallant on the bench. he was absolutely loved in the Q, and with the team sanctioned french lessons…. you never know.

    • Mick says:

      MT hired Gallant. I am sure he has not lost any sleep over losing his job to Gallant, who will never coach full time for the Habs because he does not speak French.

    • CH Marshall says:

      interesting…. has NHL coaching experience and did well in the Q.. hmm, maybe a change in coaching is only one losing streak away. Exciting times on HIO!

      edit: he doesn’t speak french ?!?!?! ?!!?!?!!!!

    • DickandDanny says:

      The players loved Cpt Kirk also and look what he has done in Carolina as a head coach. Not much. The have a couple pretty good Staal brothers, some good Europeans, and a good young sniper in Skinner and they likley won’t make the play-offs again this year.

      “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

  7. krob1000 says:

    So I am trying to to sum up the day so far on HIO:
    Stats are again being misused and taken out of context.
    Price plays his best game in years and is still the goat.
    Pk finally leads team iniceitme getting 28 mins and still doesn’t play enough.
    Diaz played another great game and still sucks.
    Our leading scorer for last 2 years should be traded and is useless but we need a scorer?

    Have I missed anything?

    …and we Hab fans are supposedly the most educated and knowledegable hockey fans…..maybe my wife is right and only dummies like sports….I think I may have to look at myself a little differently from now on.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      We can always fire the coach and GM. That is also a staple, change is good, the more we change the more immediately we win the cup.

      Otherwise, good summation!

      • krob1000 says:

        Immediately…I thought we were always 3 years from the cup? I keep hearing about this “future”….you know where we will stay pat and win it then….the future is a lot like Bigfoot.

    • DickandDanny says:

      Your post was all good with the exception of Pacioretty. He really does need to be traded. Hopefully some other team will covet his useless big body and give us something really nice in return. Like Halloween, I give out good stuff and hope my kids get good stuff in return. Except you better check the expiration date on my candy.

      “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

      • krob1000 says:

        It is not his fault he is a bog bodied scorer…that does not change the fact he is a scorer. Shouold be looked at differently…consider him 6’0″and let him do his thing. He will be fine…remember he is coming off a hamstring injury…so his legs are not quite there.

        • DickandDanny says:

          It’s not his talent, his size, or his ability that concerns me. It is his hockey sense and his compete level. Neither are very good. Without those the rest is worthless.

          “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

  8. Mick says:

    Do you think Marc Bergevin is doing a good job as GM of the Canadiens?
    Yes (74%, 2,301 Votes)
    No (26%, 823 Votes)
    Total Voters: 3,124
    So, what is Bergevin doing this year to make 74% of the voters say he is doing a good job as GM????

    • DickandDanny says:

      Where was the poll held? The brasserie MB has shares in on nickel draft night.

      “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

    • huge_polar_bear says:

      He signed Briere
      But joking aside, it is much to early to be asking this question. Most moves will happen once it is clear if your team is going to make the playoffs or is out of the race. He also signed Prust, Murray and Paros in an attempt to shed the “Habs are a small team” label. It’s not his fault that Paros goes down game 1 and Prust injured and then re-injured his shoulder. Briere may turn out to be a good signing once he gets a few chances at center and if he finds his mojo in the playoffs then we will all be talking about what a genius our GM is.

      • DickandDanny says:

        Hey, I sure hope so. I am not panning Briere yet. It just hasn’t worked out so far and I like Danny. But from what I’ve seen so far he does look a little fragile and slower. When he went to the net last night and scored I couldn’t have been more happier, for him, the team, MB and myself.

        “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

    • Mattyleg says:

      He is focused on making our team bigger and more competitive, he has a good rapport with the players, has brought some pride into the organization back, and an overall change of managerial mentality.

      He has made one or two mistakes, but every GM in the NHL makes and has made mistakes. I don’t think that making the mistakes that he has made (signing DD for too much for too long, and ???) qualifies him as doing a bad job in the year and a half that he’s been in charge.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • DickandDanny says:

        He brought in Parros. His size sits. He brought in Briere. He is a bust with no size. He signed DD to a ridiculous contract. He also has no size. He brought back Frankie. No size. Physical yes, but no size or presence to move big bodies in front. Where are the big players he is supposed to have given us who can play? Where is the elite free agent signing that can score. His record is a D- to date in my books.

        “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

        • huge_polar_bear says:

          I don’t think last year was a good one for UFA signings. There was not much elite talent available. We know he went after Lecavalier and back-up plan of Briere, but was there any other real big names out there? I’m not saying MB walks on water, but I’d give him a 65% grade right now. So overall I’m happy with his job to date. Does not mean I’m over the moon with all his moves.

          • DickandDanny says:

            Yes, your right. but what was the emergency to spend the money. Was Briere the right choice to spend that kind of money? Perhaps, with what Pacioretty is signed to play for, others including him, went, What TF ?!

            “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

      • Mick says:

        DD, Briére and Boullion have not helped the team.
        3 mistakes.
        What has he done besides his new ” focus on making our team bigger and more competitive, he has a good rapport with the players, has brought some pride into the organization back, and an overall change of managerial mentality”.
        I would question he has made our team bigger and more competitive?
        What has he done for the team on the ice?????????

      • jamman says:

        Agree 100% Matty

    • habsguru says:

      just another stat

  9. subbaniac76 says:

    Last year I had hope for therrien and his coaching. Now, not at all. He has no intelligence with players. Last night there was a 5 on 3 and who was out there? Douglas and Diaz. Are you kidding me?!? Your best defenseman on the bench with a 5 on 3?!? He needs to open his eyes. Pacioretty, gorges, dehairnais all need to go. Doing nothing for this team. Major problem is we need bigger and better D. PK and Markov are this teams only hope.. Only can hope we get better when Emelin returns

  10. HabinBurlington says:

    When Molson fired PG and cleaned house, didn’t most of us think the team was in pretty rough shape? MB was not going to be able to turn the team into a Cup winner in 2 years. He has made mistakes, hopefully he has learned from them.

    I think we need to play this season out, see what kinds of trades he makes, see what kind of contracts he gives out and perhaps by next season we can see exactly what kind of team we have.

    The Habs organization for years kept trading picks for short term fixes. That caught up to us, it cleaned our prospect pool dry and as a result the team suffered.

    MT is probably not a great coach, but firing coaches every season does nothing to help develop a team. It is very frustrating to be in a rebuild mode, we have been in one for a long time. I still think MB has a good idea of what the team needs but it will take time.

    We just have to hope he learned from signing DD and Briere what kind of players we need.

    Briere’s contract can be cleaned up with a buyout, DD may indeed be harder to move than many of us thought, but there is no sense in jumping off bridges at this point.

    Prust and Emelin will help, but we need to see improvement from Max, from Bourque and other forwards in the scoring dept. But everything starts from the backend, so lets see how it changes with Emelin back in the lineup.

    CHeers everyone!

    • DickandDanny says:

      I thought we used our two buy outs already…Gomez and Kaberle?

      “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

    • CH Marshall says:

      We kept giving away those 2nd round picks like they were meat samples at the grocery store! Here’s hoping we can address our scoring needs at forward through drafting the next few years. I’m hoping MB has an idea or two for RW to play with Pleks and Max.

    • mrhabby says:

      HB..seriously Breire bought again just will not happen. Molson already cut 2 cheques for Kaberle and Gomez under the new CBA. Its not possible unless management decides to cut him and have his salary count against the cap.

    • slyCH says:

      So far DD’s the one to buy out, but only TO has the balls to buy-out a player they just extended (Grabovsky), Briere on the other hand only has 1 more season to go and he might be of use now that he’s at his natural position.

      Oh and forget the fact Grabovsky is having a good season in Washington, that’s beside’s the point…

    • JF says:

      Good post. The reality is that this team has not been properly managed for about twenty years. You mention the way our trading picks and prospects for short-term fixes has caught up with us; there is also Gainey’s choosing to go with speed and skill regardless of size because he thought the rule-changes about a decade ago made size and toughness less important. We’re still seeing the consequences of that philosophy, although the Habs have been drafting bigger and tougher the last couple of years. But it’ll be a while before the team has the right balance.

      As for Bergevin’s moves, while some of them may be mistakes, all are short-term, stop-gap measures except the Desharnais contract, and even that is nowhere near the kind of albatross the Gomez contract was. It should also be remembered that at the time the contract was signed, it looked like a reasonable one. One could question the timing, but not really the term or value. No one could have foreseen the way Desharnais’s production would plummet. And I still think that Bergevin will find a way of dealing with this contract by the time we’re ready to contend.

      As is usually the case, it’s too early to answer this poll question. I don’t think we’ll be able to evaluate Bergevin’s work for at least a couple more seasons. But his biggest move last summer – luring Stéphane Waite from Chicago – is looking spectacular right now.

  11. krob1000 says:

    “With P.K. Subban on the ice tonight against Tampa, Montreal out-shot the Lightning. 17-11. When he was off, it was 24-3 for Tampa Bay. ”

    Just for those who are not looking at this stat realistically…..

    PK plays the pp and does not play on the PK hardly……anyoen got the 5 on 5 stats.
    Does anyone have the same stats on Markov..minus the pp?

    Another example of stats being misused in my opinion…..

    • habsguru says:

      a stat that can’t be manipulated…. PK had more shots than anybody else.

      • krob1000 says:

        well when you are the focal point of the pp I would say that is manipulated….how many were 5 on 5?
        Look Pk is great…but I think he and Markov should be split but the stat above does not tell us anything..other than PK plays the pp and doesn’t play he PK IMO.

  12. Drew42 says:

    Hey guys, (last time I’ll post this)
    Not really on topic, but sort of Hockey related… it is regarding a Charity hockey tournament this coming weekend. I would really appreciate your guys’ support.

    My wife is involved in the Scotiabank Hockey for Alzheimer’s charity tournament on Nov. 15 – 17 at Canlan Ice Sports in North Vancouver.

    She is very excited about the opportunity to participate in a weekend tournament with NHL alumni and supporting a very important cause because this event will help the Alzheimer Society of B.C. continue their work to support families impacted by dementia and to fund research for a cure. This cause is very near and dear to her heart – She is hoping that one day, people like her grandmother can wake up and have the Alzheimer’s fog that has clouded her brain lifted.

    You too can be a part of this amazing experience. The easiest way to support her is by making a secure online donation to support the fundraising efforts of her team. The top fundraising team gets first pick at the NHL Alumni draft party. Simply click on the link to make a secure online donation using your credit card or contact me directly if you would like to make a donation in another way.


    Funds raised through the 2013 Scotiabank Hockey for Alzheimer’s support the work of the Alzheimer Society, and helps to ensure that people in B.C. whose lives have been impacted by Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia can connect to a province-wide network of information, education and support that helps them build the knowledge, skills and confidence to maintain quality of life.

    If I can get your help in distributing this message that would be great. Alzheimer’s is not only an “old person’s” disease – the youngest person diagnosed with Alzheimer’s was only 27 years of age. Every little bit helps to beat this disease.

    For more information about the Alzheimer Society of B.C., please visit http://www.alzheimerbc.org.

    Thank you for your support. Together let’s “put Alzheimer’s on ice”!

    The deadline for donations is TODAY November 13th, 5pm (PST). EVERY BIT COUNTS!

  13. Bill says:

    Pac taking unnecessary heat from some personages of dubious sagacity.

    He’s the team’s leading scorer two years in a row. Bona fide 30 goal man. He will be fine.

    In any case, he is far from being part of any problem, especially considering his age, contract, and incredibly friendly cap hit.

    People who ignore his production and cap value are simply disgruntled and not paying attention.

    • knob says:

      Agreed. He only turns 25 this year. Between him, Bournival, and the Kid Line we have some young players to look forward to.

    • DickandDanny says:

      Not paying attention? Watch him play. I mean really watch this guy play. Just focus on him for a few shifts and if you see something myself and other’s don’t see, then please let me know what it is you see. I see a floater. a peripheral player who does not like to engage. I see a player who completely relies on others. I see a guy with no hockey sense, no anticipation, and no presence on the ice. And lastly, a big guy who NEVER throws a check. I would love to play against this guy every night. I wouldn’t have bruise or sore bone on my body.

      “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

    • slyCH says:

      Sagacity, now there’s the HIO word of the season let alone day.

  14. habsguru says:

    Pac taking a lot of heat. put him on a line with Toews or Richards, and he scores 35-40. he is not an anchor, but a damn good support player. who on the CH is anchor? exactly!

    • DickandDanny says:

      Disagree. No evidence of him being a finisher this year, and in the past he may have been able to score a few goals but I don’t see the same player scoring now based on his work ethic. He is a floater.

      “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

  15. homerbowen says:

    Not pleased with MT’s coaching this year. In many games his line match ups are questionable. His abuse of PK’s ice time is shocking and he favours too many beyond their prime players (DD, Briere, Boullion & Gionta). Hopefully when Emelin return Boullion sits (not Murray).
    We have pleanty of passengers this year and MB has quite an assortment available to trade when the deadline nears. While I always hope for a Cup and the playoffs neither is going to happen this year.

  16. 100HABS says:

    Briere. Wow. What a great signing by MB!

  17. Mattyleg says:

    I’m going to join in and say how disappointed I am that a rebuilding team that has been plagued by more injuries than any other team in the NHL this season failed to beat the #1 team in the East, and only managed to take them to a shootout.

    We suck and our coach sucks and our players suck and our GM sucks.

    The only thing that doesn’t suck totally is us, the fans, who are amazing, always right, and completely beyond reproach in refusing to support this sucky group of sucks.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • christophor says:

      “…amazing, always right, and completely beyond reproach…”

      Seems to be how you think of yourself as of late.

      • Mattyleg says:

        I get lambasted for being positive.
        90% of the pissing and moaning on here is stupid, in my opinion, and creates a kind of snowball effect in which each baseless crticism is given some kind of credibility because enough anonymous posters agree with it.

        There are things that the team can do better, and I have no problem with those kinds of positive criticisms that balance the good with the bad.

        I refuse to pile on in the negativity-orgy.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Cal says:

      I must agree completely afore I change my mind.

    • Eddie says:

      We are rebuilding?

    • DickandDanny says:

      Price took us to the SO. Not the team. Otherwise we were completely outplayed by a better team who had as many, or more key injuries than we had. To compare Stamkos injury to anyone who is out on our side would be ridiculous. Also, TB are not a first place team. They are simply in first place at this juncture of the season. Much like we were when we rode near the top of the conference last year in a shortened season. Had we played 82 games last year we may have been lucky to make the play-offs.

      “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

    • knob says:

      Thank you, you finally get it. I thought that we were going to have to read another post where you blow sunshine up MB and MT’s ___hole.

      btw, this team is not in a rebuild and the only two injuries last night were Prust and Emelin.

    • Luke says:

      Suckiest bunch of suckers to have ever sucked.

  18. FANHABULOUS says:

    I think it is becoming obvious that something is not right with our offense. At first, I thought it was a systemic issue, meaning MT’s system has dictated a set of “safety-first” type of plays that end up stifling our creativity. I still think there is an element of that, but there are deeper issues as well.

    Most would agree that it’s super frustrating to see Gio, Plec, Max and others skate over the blue line, then just throw a hopeless puck towards the goalie from the corner board. This play is so freaking obvious… if a guy sitting on his couch sucking down potato chips can see this play coming a mile away, it means that it is also obvious to the other team. My first instinct was to say that this is due to MT making guys do that… play safe. Get it on goal, hope for a rebound. But its not entirely true to fault him on this… after all, we all love the drive, creativity and skill of the EGG line… unlike the other lines, these guys actually try to create a play when they cross the line. I rarely see any of them take the easy route and just throw it at goal from the corner board at the blue line (unless they are at the end of a shift of course).

    Then I started thinking back to when the Count was coaching a couple of seasons ago. Same thing, guys like Gio, Plec, Max and others did the exact same thing. A boring, non-creative, easy-way-out play like barely crossing the blue line then just throwing at net. And this is where I changed my mind: I don’t think that MT is preaching that play (again, see EGG line, or when guys with drive like Prust or Bournival are on the ice)… instead, its the usual suspects: Gio, Plec, Max, Bork, DB, DD, and our entire 4th line (which is kinda expected for them). These guys just do not have another facet to their game. Look, I love Plec and I think he is underrated and a great defensive center… Gio and Bork will get you 20 goals on a regular basis… Max has the potential for more. But overall, these guys lack imagination, creativity and worst of all the drive and confidence to try and make a creative play to generate offense. They make the so called “safe play” but thats NOT what they’re primary goal should be… I think we need a top 6 that is more like the EGG line, skilled, creative and willing to make dangerous plays to generate offense. Our bottom 6 can be more conservative and take less chances…as of right now, we have an imbalance in that area.
    “You will not regret picking me” – PK Subban.

  19. SteverenO says:

    repost—-Brought to the top


    If i were the owner (or GM) you could be sure that my coaching staff would be well informed as to each players productivity and efficiency in every situation.

    The “computer” work does not need to be done during the game, There is plenty of time to do analytics between games.

    The coach should have designated the line combos prior to the game and would have the right to modify the lines (IF THERE IS A GOOD REASON TO DO SO) .

    Eller is just as effective as Plekanec on the PK but his line is not nearly as effective on the PP.

    Last nite Plekanec played 4 minutes short handed and less than two minutes on the PP. Eller played 2 minutes short handed and 3 minutes on the PP. Had those numbers been reversed, we may have got two points last nite instead of just one…… at least we would have had a better chance,

    Plekanec 53 minutes SH TOI- 5 Goals allowed= AVG- 11 MinsPerGa
    Eller; 26 minutes SH TOI – 1 Goal Allowed AVG- 26 MinsPer GA

    Plekanec 42 Mins PP TOI- 9 Goals scored= AVG- 4.8 MinsPerPPG
    Eller; 40 Mins PP TOI- 4 goals scored =AVG – 10 MinsPerPPG

    We do not suffer when Plekanec is NOT on the PK we DO suffer when he is not on the PP.

    Coaching 101; Know your players strengths and weaknesses-


    Steve O.

    • DickandDanny says:

      If Plekanec is our answer on the PP we are in worse shape than I thought. On one PP last night (probably the reason he didn’t get more PP time) he not once, but twice in succession gave the puck away for no apparent reason. Good grief.

      “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

  20. 24 Cups says:

    Pat Lafontaine – Local hero to be sure but what does this guy know about running a hockey franchise? He has next to no experience in any capacity.

    Ted Nolan – Two quick questions. I wonder what his credentials are in terms of working with young players because that is surely where the Sabres are headed. Rolston was in way over his head but isn’t the immediate future about tanking and grabbing kids at the top of the draft? How does Nolan fit into that mindset?

    If I live in Buffalo I can’t help but feel this is a trip down memory lane. Time will tell.

    • DickandDanny says:

      Sort of like Rejean Houle and Mario Tremblay eh ! Bon chance !

      “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

      • Strummer says:

        It’s nothing like that- Lafontaine won’t be the GM and Nolan is an experienced Adams Trophy- winning coach
        Houle and Tremblay had no experience

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

        • DickandDanny says:

          Nolan hasn’t been in the League for what, ten years? The rules have changed. It’s a different game. Lafontaine to my knowledge has no real experience other than a business background. But I will say they should do better than RJ and Mario did.

          “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

    • Eddie says:

      Ted Nolan is a terrific hockey guy. I am thrilled for him to finally get another chance.

    • Strummer says:

      Apparently he has worked as a consultant to the NHL and to the Islanders.
      He’s going to hire a GM and already has a short list.
      If he hires the right people his lack of experience in hockey opp’s will not be an issue.

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

  21. Supersonic says:

    CBC reporting the Sabres news, saying Lafontaine trails only Joe Mullen in goals scored by american born players when Modano, Roenick and Tkatchuk had more.

  22. Bill says:

    SteveO, please tweet your questions to Jess Rusnak! Maybe she will ask.

  23. 100HABS says:

    I know our power play is good, but it just seems to me it could be great with one small change. Plecky is just amazing on the PP but our best line are the kids. So, just for the PP, why not:

    Galchenyuck – Plekanec – Gallagher
    Markov – Subban

    Just for the power play, play these guys for the first minute (or a little more). Wouldn’t that just kill?

    • DickandDanny says:

      Plecky, as you affectionately refer to him, gave away the puck not once but twice in succession on the same Power Play last night. Let’s face it the reason our PP does not work some nights is because everyone in the rink knows the play is to Subban at the point for the big one timer. So predictable. And of course no big tough forwards standing in front for a screen or a rebound. We have BG and BG. One is not bad for his size, and the other, well his time has come.

      “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

      • 100HABS says:

        I saw those plays and noticed the errors. They were both Plekanec’s fault. But before he did that, he made 3-4 awesome passes. He also stole the puck once while they were trying to take it down the ice.

        Everybody makes some mistakes and the good offensive players create things by taking chances. So they make more mistakes. I even saw Gretzky make a mistake once!

      • DickandDanny says:

        Elite NHL players, who garner PP time, don’t make careless give-aways twice on one PP. I don’t mind a guy making a mistake now and then if he is trying to make a play, but two brutal giveaways that were just careless and with little effort made just deflates your team, and kills the PP. His head is just not in it for 60 minutes, and to choose him for PP time, I don’t know if he warrants it? Also, you chose Gretzky for a comparison player, which is simply ludicrous.

        “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

  24. Bill says:

    Joeybarrie you are correct. It is a lot harder to win without one of those “elite” players. Boston did it a few years ago through incredible team depth, but most cup winners nowadays have a “superstar”.

    We have Subban, but we lack the same kind of forward. Unfortunately they do not grow on trees.

  25. Timo says:

    Up front, Habs only don’t have Prust. I don’t believe for a second that Prust’s return will change anything as far as scoring goals.

  26. Ian Cobb says:


    PHOENIX – A high school football player in Arizona died from an injury suffered in the fourth quarter of a blowout playoff game loss, serving as another tragic reminder of the dangers of head trauma in youth sports.

    Hopi High School senior Charles Youvella died of a traumatic brain injury Monday at a hospital, the Arizona Interscholastic Association said. He was injured Saturday in Hopi’s 60-6 loss to Arizona Lutheran in a first-round playoff game. Youvella scored his team’s only touchdown in the game.

    The death attracted national attention after Arizona Cardinals star wide receiver tweeted a picture of Youvella and asked people to pray for the teen’s family, friends and teammates.

    The death comes at a time when head injuries in football are attracting attention at all levels of the sport.

    The Institute of Medicine and National Research Council two weeks ago called for a national system to track sports-related concussions and answer questions about youth concussions.

    The report said 250,000 people age 19 and younger were treated in emergency rooms for concussions and other sports- or recreation-related brain injuries in the country in 2009. That was an increase from 150,000 in 2001.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      After concussion, severe depression and it kills.!

      What is a concussion?, as comprehended and explained by myself.

      I have been involved as a lay person with research pertaining to neurology at a major medical university. I have picked up a lot of information working first with veterinarian pathologists when I was doing research on my fox and mink ranch with calcium. And I have been involved lately with the neurology research dept. from a major medical university. Only as the handler of my research birds involved in the study and offering some of my former findings from my own animal autopsy’s on my ranches.

      So I do not profess to be an expert on the subject pertaining to concussion, but I will try to explain, the best that I can, what happens to the brain cells that have been concussed inside the skull. And why one must stay completely resting after a concussion.

      The very soft brain cells, when violently thrown against the skull, are damaged and the neuron releases a potassium chemical out of the brain cell. Leaving a void. Calcium that is already present around the outside of the cells, seeps into the cells replacing the potassium.
      This calcium is what gives the chemical imbalance to the brain and is what causes the damage. Until all of this calcium leaves the brain cells completely, and it can take a long time, depending on how much calcium was taken on each cell. The patient is left extremely vulnerable to instant death upon a second bump, or at least permanent brain damage as the calcium solidifies upon second impact. Even a hard coughing spell or light exercise can cause severe pain and damage. Complete rest is needed.

      These damaged cells have to be cleared completely of this calcium before one can resume activity to avoid the calcium from solidifying, causing more serious consequences including death.

      This is very acute in young people under the age of 24 as the brain is still growing and developing.
      Please, coaches and parents know this, every severe contact to the head can cause some cells to expel potassium and take on calcium. A second, even slight bump, with the cells still containing calcium, can be even more deadly.
      Ian Cobb

  27. joeybarrie says:

    Blame Therrien. Terrible coach. Wont play PK.
    Blame MT, what has he done?
    Blame Boullion or DD or injuries.
    We wont blame Price for last night, but it will be his turn soon enough.
    I mean why don’t we just blame Scott Gomez…..

    Its simple.
    We do not have an elite scorer. Our big scorers have not been effective lately.
    MaxPac has 2 goals in 10 games,
    Gio has 4 goals in 18 games,
    Bourque has 5 goals in 19 games,
    Bournival and Gallagher are saving us in that sense. But we lack a serious goal scorer right now.
    We cant score a penalty shot to save our lives.

    We have some GREAT components, but we have been lacking an elite scorer in quite a while and the last best option we had was Mike Cammalleri. (say what you want about him, he has 8 goals in 11 games)
    We got guys like Eller, Pleks who get goals and assists. Guys like Gio, Bourque, Gally, who average 20-30 goals. very important contributions.
    Chuckie, Subbie, Markov who set up goal scorers.
    But we need an elite scorer to take this team to the next level in order to compete to be a top team.
    Until then, we will always be playing a game where we win or lose by one goal, and never win enough to safely be in the playoffs.
    I love MaxPac, and while he is a GREAT player, he has shown a high of 30-35 goals a season. we need a plus 40 scoring player.

  28. wjc says:

    Two schools of thought and both opposite.

    1. examples: Tinordi, Beaulieu. One side says bring them to Montreal and let them learn under fire. The other side says leave them in Hamilton to play and learn in all situations. Who is right?

    It can be argued that playing in Hamilton, gives them time to develop the instincs necessary to do things automatically and without thinking.
    Which can be called confidence, so little and big things in all situations without thought. Just doing it.

    It can be argued that bringing them up and playing under fire in a tough unforgiving market like Montreal is the way to go. Make mistakes, play them big minutes anyways and sink or swim. Learn under fire.

    My thinking is you protect your young prospects expecially defensemen because the position can expose you if you are not ready. Too many mistakes will have fans calling for your head and destroy your confidence because you still have to take the second to think instead of just reacting.

    So teams bring in older experienced, hardened players as stop gab solutions to make a team a playoff contender and let the younger, more vulnerable players develop at a slower pace.

    Some players, not all, might flourish in that environment, Suban comes to mind, even he has come under fire at times, but his personality, talent and background keeps him positive and flourishing.

    So in summary, I think you live with the Bullions, and Murrays until the kids are really ready. They have had a sniff, they know what they are up against and are working towards a goal. It could be after Christmas, who really knows. The coaches in Hamilton along with Brisebose will monitor the situation closely and what they report will either slow the process or speed it up.


  29. TheDagger says:

    Gionta should really take more slapshots from along the boards after he just crosses the blueline

  30. DickandDanny says:

    I think I have figured out how to beat Montreal, and there have been a couple teams who have obviously figured this out as well. It’s simple and it works. Pinch your D in, on each side of the boards in the offensive zone. Montreal collapses all five players in the front of the net, including the wingers who are playing deep. When the Habs do obtain the puck from in the corner, in front, or along the side boards there is no one to pass to and no way to get the puck out of the zone. TB kept the puck in there well over half the game and we looked stupid chasing it around all night long. This system MT is employing obviously is to protect our goalie and to block shots, but how the heck do we get the puck out if we play that system and they keep their D inside the blue line and plug up the boards. We don’t. I’ve witnessed at least 3 teams do this to us this year and we lost all 3 games and looked bad in doing so. The Bruins do this to us every time we play them. So to the Leafs. The stat about PK (shots for and against when he is on the ice) makes even more sense when thinking about this situation, because he is our only D that can actually fend off an opponent and skate the puck out of the zone. Until we change our scheme we will continually be hemmed in our zone.

    On another note please make a trade MB. Pacioretty and DD must go. Actually try trading Pac first and maybe then DD can have someone who actually knows how to play hockey and to get open on his wing. Pac must be the most over rated player of all time in Montreal. Horrible.

    “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

    • mrhabby says:

      hmm..right lets get rid of Max who is part of the young core..good move.

      ps..and a very good and cheap cap hit.

      • DickandDanny says:

        I think you should read other posts about what our fans think of him and you will see I am not alone on this. I also challenge you to just watch Pacioretty for a few shifts. Don’t watch the play just watch him. Watch how he floats, makes no effort to get open, doesn’t go hard to open ice, has no puck sense and any idea about ANTICIPATION. And god forbid he ever throws a body check. I could put together a half hour hi-lite reel just of him skating past or around opponents who have just made a pass. It is pathetic. Like one of the other posters wrote last night “it makes me physically ill to see Max Pac in a Habs jersey”.

        “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

  31. Timo says:

    Next, I am looking for Coderre’s tweet about Pacioretty’s performance. Can he get him a trip to Hamilton too?

  32. Say Ash says:

    Wait, what? Timo’s buying the team?

  33. Body_of_Price_Repels_You says:

    It seems at least likely that Rick Dudley will have a chance to become the Sabres GM. In that case who can we get to replace him as Assistant GM?

    MB is a good communicator, passionate and charismatic. He is questionable when it comes to evaluating talent.

    In retrospect, you know who was good at evaluating talent but had terrible social skills? Pierre Gauthier.



    (I know he’s with the ‘Hawks)

  34. Bripro says:

    What a wonderful time to be a Quebecer, eh?
    The Habs are under-performing.
    The local economy stinks (trust me, several businesses going under)
    And our Nazi leader is getting ready to dish out the order
    “SUIT UP! WE’RE INVADING ONTARIO AND VERMONT!” (en français… of course).

  35. habsfan0 says:

    Wow! Ted Nolan back as HC in Buffalo.
    Good move by the Sabres.

  36. Curtis O Habs says:

    Hey Max; Next time you have a step on a defender and another player with you on the rush, TAKE IT TO THE NET! Do not shoot from the face off dot!

    • DickandDanny says:

      That would take some hockey sense for which he has none. He has over stayed his welcome. Trade him while there is some semblance of respectability left in his career.

      “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

  37. Luke says:

    Re: Sucking in the shootouts/Sucking at fights.

    Would you rather have a fighter (Parros) or a shootout/PP specialist (Schremp, for example) as the last roster (12th forward) player?

    (Knowing the ideal is a 50 goal offensice dynamo that can fight and score in the shootout… but that’s not an option. Strictly last roster guy here. Occassional healthy scratch territory).

  38. Cape Breton says:

    Being that the team is not performing well under MT, and appears to be sinking, what’s the chances of Jacques Lemaire taking over the reins? Would he want the job?

  39. jeffhabfan says:

    Well for 2 periods we played like shit. 3rd period on alot better and it is funny that you finally go to the net we score.I guess take the point and move on to the next game.We are iffy so far this season but we have been in a wildcard spot almost all year so far.Hey Burly Fiddler for D.D. makes alot of sense I would like to see happen.

  40. habsfan0 says:

    Therrien said: “I’m not impressed.”

    Unless I’m wrong,wasn’t that the exact same phrase that MT used in that infamous press conference he held in Pittsburgh shortly before the Penguins tied the can to his derrière?

    History repeating itself?

  41. Bripro says:

    Emelin can’t arrive soon enough.
    Personally, last year’s combination of Emelin with Diaz worked very well.
    Emelin, being the wall, was a one-stop stomping ground, and this allowed Diaz some offensive manoeuvring. I hope MT experiments with this combination again.
    With that, I agree with those suggesting that Markov and PK be split to allow Gorges to feel more comfortable with a reliable D, like Markov.
    Poor Gorges looks particularly slow this year.
    As for the forwards, Briere still has a lot to prove IMO. Fine, lucky goal or not. Tampa’s goal was fluke also.
    And let’s be honest, if it wasn’t for the team’s goaltending, we’d be tanking. (That would make some on here very happy).
    I say “Let there be a low-five! Let PK thrive and have fun, like the EGG line! Let DD stay in the rafters. He’ll soon be joined by Frankie Cube. And find someone who can teach these guys how to control the puck for longer periods of time – not hard!”

    • Timo says:

      So what you are really saying is “get rid of Therrien”.

      • Bripro says:

        Time to change the string on that one-string banjo of yours.
        Although I’ll give you this.
        Last year, he seems like a genius at times, until the Ottawa playoff series.
        He hasn’t seemed nearly as effective during games this year.
        Usually, when your team plays ineffective during the first period, you change strategies for the rest of the game. Not with 5 minutes left in the 3rd.

  42. Timo says:

    So, every team puts a lot of emphasize on coaching the players what to say and what not to say in front of the cameras. Has it never occurred to the Habs that having their captain (or any other millionaire stiff for that matter) say to the whole world that “we didn’t compete for the first 40 minutes” is much less acceptable than Joe Thornton’s rubbing himself in celebration outburst?

  43. stephen says:

    “With P.K. Subban on the ice tonight against Tampa, Montreal out-shot the Lightning. 17-11. When he was off, it was 24-3 for Tampa Bay. ”

    I imagine these stats include PP/PK time? Not downplaying PK’s importance in the least, but I’d love to know the numbers for 5-on-5. I think we’d get a truer sense of his control of the game that way.

    • christophor says:

      Those are 5v5 numbers. Subban vs the rest of the defence is usually Jekyll/Hyde according to almost any stat.

      But there are a few people who come on here and condescendingly claim that Markov is the team’s best Dman. I suppose their test is the eye test (after a few beers). (This isn’t to say I don’t think Markov needs to be retained. He does.)

  44. Timo says:

    When is Therrien’s and Bergevin’s turn?

  45. DipsyDoodler says:

    Fun with stats.

    Nobel laureates Kahneman and Tversky were consulted by the Israeli air force. The flight instructors were puzzled by the fact that when a pilot did really well one day and was praised, his performance tended to drop the next day. But when a pilot did poorly and was chastised, his performance would improve.

    The instructors thought they had uncovered a psychological truism: praise makes people complacent while criticism spurns them to do better.

    All they had found, as K and T proved, was a statistical quirk: reversion to the mean.

  46. Ali says:

    Pat Lafontaine and Ted Nolan to the Sabres!

  47. frontenac1 says:

    Report:Sabres fire Regier AND Roulston.

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