About last night …

Was that it, the last home game of the season?

You have to think so.

Your Montreal Canadiens have played their hearts out through four games against a much better hockey team.

They’ve won a period here, a period there.

But as has been the case all season, domination has not translated into goals.

Mistakes have occurred; and as happens with dismaying frequency against a superior opponent, the mistakes have ended up in the back of the Canadiens’ net – often behind luckless Carey Price, who hasn’t won a hockey game in 50 DAYS!!

Price probably will get another chance Friday night in Washington.

And anything can happen.

But let’s not delude ourselves.

This smells over.

•  •  •

Check the video of Ovechkin ice-spraying the flag kid.

Would Sid do that?

tzta6AESBEU

Comment of the Night, from Sisu:

This series was won years
ago.  2003 through 2006, to be exact.

Over
this period, one club went 52-87-22-3 (.460), and for its efforts was
rewarded with Alexander Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom.  The other team
went 83-61-16-4 (.567) and was rewarded with Kyle Chipchura and David
Fischer.

The key to NHL success: be sufficiently awful in the
most opportune years.

•  •  •

It’s one of the most hackneyed clichés in sports.

But Hal Gill, by virtue of his superb play in this almost-over series, earned the right to use it.

“You’re an inch away from a good play,” Gill said of his effort to contain Alexander Ovechkin on the sequence that became Washington’s go-ahead goal.

Ah, a game of inches. 

And during the off-season that looms, the Canadiens will have a lot of time to think about how close they came to upsetting the number-one seed in the NHL.

Washington’s always quotable coach, Bruce Boudreau, was gracious in victory while chronicling the progress of the series.

“Game one they won,” Boudreau said. “Game two they should have won. And tonight they should have won after two periods.”

Coulda, shoulda, woulda: that ought to be one of the forward lines on your Montreal Canadiens.

After 40 minutes, they had outshot Washington 33-18, including a 21-9 bombardment in the second period.

The Canadiens coulda had more goals, if it weren’t for the excellence of Semyon Varlamov.

They shoulda gone to the dressing room with a 2-1 lead, but didn’t because late-period carelessness led to Mike Knuble’s shorthanded goal with seven seconds left in the period. Given the situation – one-goal lead, building rocking, on the PP – how in the world do you give up a textbook 2-on-1?

You do it by having Roman Hamrlik pinch and miss Tom Poti’s clearing chip off the left boards, sending Boyd Gordon and Mike Knuble away. Then Josh orges couldn’t intercept the pass or cover the shooter. Goal!

Jacques Martin said Andrei Markov and MAB, his first-wave point men, were tired and had to be subbed. The second-wave Dmen were caught.

A crusher. And Hamrlik has been on for shorties in TWO straight games.

One more season of the Hammer at $5.5 million. Thanks, Bob.

But mark this down: Many teams woulda folded in the face of the heartbreak the Canadiens have endured in this series.

The Canadiens didn’t quit. They battled hard against a superior team, but after 40 dominant minutes produced an unlikely tie score, the boys didn’t have much in the tank for the third period.

How bad was the final 20 minutes?

Washington outshot the Canadiens 20-6.

Andrei Markov, the best defenceman on the team, was minus-2 for the third period.

Marc-André Bergeron, not the best defenceman, was minus-3 over the last 20 minutes.

In noting how well the Canadiens have played, Boudreau said “I’d be frustrated if I was them.”

The frustration showed late in the game, when Price drew two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties, the first for firing the puck into a gaggle of Capitals celebrating the Jason Chimera goal that made it 4-2, the second for whacking Nicklas Backstrom with his stick … from the bench.

Mike Cammalleri later alluded to “immaturity” without singling Price out, but I thought the childish rage was evidence of an athlete who cared.

Price played well. He had no chance on the SH goal that turned the momentum of the game, nor on Ovechkin’s laser fired past a screening Gill.

I see Price getting the start in Washington on Friday night.

And I see him getting another one when the 2010-’11 season begins in October.

•  •  •

So maybe some good Xs-and-Os peeps in the Commentariat can explain why the Canadiens have sucked on faceoffs in this series.

Tomas Plekanec was 5-13 in Game 4. Scott Gomez was 10-14.

Hard to get anything going when you’re chasing puck possession all night.

•  •  •

Ryan O’Byrne had seven hits, blocked four shots and was the only Dman to finish with a plus.

He should play Friday night, regardless of whether Jaro Spacek is good to go.

The Canadiens have to start thinking about next season, and O’B should be part of those plans.

•  •  •

Sergei Kostitsyn was plus-2 in eight minutes of solid play.

No disrespect to Mathieu Darche, who’s a warrior with a great work ethic, but talent-wise, there”s just no cpmparison.

•  •  •

With all due respect to the Canadiens, a team that gives them 21 shots in 20 minutes might not be the most serious Stanley Cup aspirant emerging from the first round.

The Caps’ D might be charitably described as ordinary. Their forwards are not the most diligent backcheckers in the league.

But they are something to watch from the blueline in.

We’re used to the Ovie Show, but Nicklas Backstrom – plus-4 on the night – has been lights-out in this series.

And Alexander Semin is showing signs of emerging from his torpor.

 

267 Comments

  1. MikeL says:

    I prefered Jaro this season, and most of last as well. But, I still think Carey is the future. I agree with your current assesment of him and I don’t like a lot of his personal makeup either. But, I don’t feel comfortable choosing Halak over him at this point. Before the playoffs started I was all for it, but Halak came crashing back down to earth in Game 2 and 3. Goalies can go on a great streak for long periods of time, then never come close to it again. In general, they tend to be the guys that came out of no where. Think Brian Boucher (both times), Tim Thomas, Cristobal Huet, Vesa Toskala, Andrew Raycroft. They all came out of no where (no pre NHL hype), had a great season or two, then collapsed. I’m almost certain that Brian Elliott, Anti Niemi, and Jonathon Quick will fall into this category eventually as well. I’m not so sure Jaro will, but he is a very small goalie who will always need to be on his A game to succeed. I can’t think of many goalies as small as Jara with much long term success.

    I’m not so sure Pleks is gone. I think he likes Montreal, and management needs him. We have no one to replace him, and the free agent market is very bare – other than Patrick Marleau, but if we sign him we may as well sign Patrick Lalime and bring back Steve Smith out of retirement. Complete playoff choker.

    I’m not a big fan of Martin either. I think he has the right ideas coming into games, but lacks the passion or communication skills to be effective in the game. He may as well just sit the team in front of a power point presentation pre game and stay in the pressbox for it.

    We need a better 3rd line center. Lapierre is just not good enough. I really liked Moore down the stretch, and would be pleased if he was signed for another year. It’s not like he’ll be taking anyone’s spot, as Ben Maxwell looks like a career minor leaguer to me. A big body on one of the bottom lines would help. Travis Moan has really disappointed me this season. Maybe my expectations were too high, but he doesn’t really hit very well for a “banger”. I don’t know how good he is, but a guy that always caught my eye was 6 foot 7 center Brian Boyle. A former 1st rounder that the Rangers signed to a one year deal last offseason. I’d go for him if possible.

    Our defensive prospects are the positive of the team going forward. It’s going to be really tough, though, finding ice time for both Subban and Webber. Two right handed, offensively gifted, but defensively learning defensemen on the same defense corps could be trouble. Spacek is only getting worse, and despite his impressive playoffs, I’m not a big fan of his game. I always liked Hammer, but he needs to be used better – i.e. not on the PP.

     

  2. Y says:

    I’ve all but resigned myself to the fact that this team will be gone come Saturday morning.

    I wonder what this team could have accomplished had they been together for an entire season.

    In a way they did exceed expectations in making the playoffs – I seem to recall every “expert” writing them off before the season began and writing obituaries after #79 went down.

    Halak is one of the main reasons this team even made it to the playoffs and it’s going to be sad to see him go this summer.

     

    Looking forward to October!

  3. Bob Barker says:

    I have two things to say. First, pointing fingers isn’t going to get us anywhere. 

    Second, this is absolutely Roman Hamrlik’s fault. He doesn’t get paid $5.5 million to make ridiculously stupid plays with seconds left in the period. Again a SHG ends up swinging the momentum. He should absolutely be bought out to free up cap space in the offseason.  

  4. smiler2729 says:

    Goalie: Sorry to offend the majority here but Carey Price is the goalie and Jaro Halak is a pleasant stopgap while Price gets his maturity together. Halak’s less than brave face in the pressure of trying to clinch (vs. sub-par teams!) and just plain embarrassing performance Saturday and Monday may have devalued him as trade bait but I’m sure there are GMs out there dumb enough to still believe in Huet Part Deux. Oh yeah, I sign Marty Turco to help Price find his way.

    Defence: P.K.’s time has come, Hamrlik’s has ended. I keep Gill, name Gorges captain and play O’Byrne until he becomes Chris Pronger Light. I shop Markov to see what I can fetch for Malakhov Version 2.0.

    Forwards: I re-sign Moore and Metropolit. I dump Lapierre and try to find the right mix of 3rd and 4th liners to complement Moen. Talbot, Armstrong, Malhotra types. I try to swing a blockbuster with Calgary to see if Jarome Iginla’s needing a change of scenery is indeed true (hey, they dealt Phaneuf for chump change, why not?)

    Coaching: I teach Kirk Muller french so he becomes head coach and the team takes on his persona and opponents hate to play them relentless hard-working Habs!

  5. JIMVINNY says:

    PK scores the OT winner and Hamilton goes up 3-1 in the series.

  6. SeriousFan09 says:

    Except Crosby wouldn’t do that specifically because he is Crosby. Cooke doing it solves nothing, a cheap shot bum going after a superstar who needs his ego reigned in won’t change anything either.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  7. smiler2729 says:

    Fined? The guy makes a GA-zillion dollars a year and still doesn’t have the class to buy a tooth…. naw, somebody, sometime, somewhere is gonna get that ego-monster-moron. Maybe Matt Cooke, probably Sidney Crosby. Crosby is a million times the player and man that Ovenchicken is.

  8. dicktracy says:

     *sign both if possible but trade one before the deadline…i’m guessing Halak

    * get rid of the Hammer, buy him out or pay some of his salary for a trade. Also trade either Spacek/ and or Gill

    * bring up and stick with the kids from the farm.

    * lowball Pouliot and sign SK to a large raise for 1 or 2 years. Keep AK..for a while.

    Fire PG and JM

  9. J. Ambrose says:

    p.s. Mike, don’t be shy. I think we’d all be curious to know which moves you would make. Seize the power!

  10. SeriousFan09 says:

    I don’t think you are, I don’t think anyone is, I’m just making the case for why i don’t see how trading Markov becomes a win for the team.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  11. SeriousFan09 says:

    Unless they fine him about a million dollars he won’t notice it.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  12. subdoxastic says:

    I’m not trying to pick a fight on what is obviously a less than stellar night for habs fans, but you do realize that you personally attack Price in your missive, right?

    And then ask others to accord you the respect adults give each other, and not attack you personally– like children are wont to do.

    I’ve no interest in engaging in a goalie debate (this site is rife with the rantings of both goalies’ supporters). And I don’t want to engage in any maudlin or maniacal discussion vis a vis optimism vs. pessimism for the future of the team.

    Just wanted to point out the double standard.

    cheers.

  13. PattyBoy31 says:

    I believe Ovechkin should be fined for snowing the kid carrying the flag. Just sayin…

  14. smiler2729 says:

    I cannot thoughtfully reply to your articulate post-rant because if I did, I would be mentioning or “defending” some players, that as soon as their names are mentioned here, set off some weird cosmic stupid reaction where I would get called all kinds of names for not thinking along the lines of the majority.

    Oh crap, I sound like Bugs.

  15. SUMO says:

    You make a good point abt Cammalleri and Gionta, they are both essentially the same-type of player. Smallish snipers. Keep one but not both. This should free up $$ for Pleks.

    I like Pouliot and still believe in him. It would be nice if we could get another big body upfront with some hands.

    Next years D will feature either Weber or Subban but not both. They are both right-handed shots and could replace MAB’s canon.

    The goalie situation has been resloved. bye-bye Jaro. We need an experienced back-up.

     

  16. dicktracy says:

     

    So far the Habs and Caps have played for: total Periods = 12 + 2 ot

    Habs win 6 periods, tie 2 periods, lose 4 periods, ot = 1+1

    Reasons for series disparity could include a) refing b) coaching c) goaltending d) others

    Anyway ‘in my opinion’ remembering that the Habs are the `16th’ place team and are playing the 1st place team, that they are in fact this close…then they are very close to a huge breakthrough. re: Islanders N.Y. 1979-80: Oilers, Edmonton 1983-84

    Ya got some work to do but I believe.

  17. smiler2729 says:

    I’m not a Hamrlik lover like you think from these posts, I was just making a point.

  18. kempie says:

    you are baked

  19. Chuck says:

    You call the guy a bust, then want him traded for someone that can help the team.

    Er….

    _____________________________________

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

  20. smiler2729 says:

    I’m not defending Hammer with the two assist thing, I’m just pointing out how stats mislead.

     

  21. J. Ambrose says:

    Alright, now that its clear that this season is “in the books” (my apologies to the eternally optimistic out there — please skip this posting), time for us all to play couch-GM’s. Which changes would you make off-season? Here are a few starter points to get you thinking:

    • Goal: do you try to keep both young goalies and, like this year, see if one can wrestle the starter’s throne from the other, and thus invite another season of bickering on the forums and in the bars? Or do you sign an offer sheet and then trade one away? If so, which?
    • Defense: do you bring Subban, Weber, and perhaps even Carle up next year, and if so, who do you move to make room? I’m betting Hammer is the popular choice here, but remember his contract won’t be easy to unload, and he was invaluable early in the season while Marky was out. Is there still a place for MAB anymore? Who stays?
    • Forwards: clearly we need more muscle and grit up front, so who do you try to move to make room? Is there a place on the same team for two wingers so similar as Cammy and Gionta? Do you give Pouliot another shot at regaining the form he showed when he first came over? And how about the Bewlay, er, Belo Brothers? Andrei’s numbers have steadily dropped over the last two seasons? Do you want to gamble that he’ll return to his 53-point ways? And do you bet on Sergei having an attitude replacement and finally realizing his immense potential? Or do you see what you can get for them, and say adios? Or split them up and keep one? Is Moen worth keepin g around? Who stays? Who goes (if you can move them)?
    • Coaching: Jackie was clearly brought in to give stability to a team rocked by scandal, in-fighting, and wholesale changes, and he succeeded. He exudes calm (to the point of somnambulism) and is clearly an expert in x’s and o’s instruction. But he lacks in-game creativity and improvisational, thinking-on-your-feet flair, not to mention an inspirational visual passion. Is it too early to offer Boucher the big league job? Or is it time to promote Muller? Or do you give Jackie one more year with a more well-rounded club of his choosing (in consultation with Gauthier, of course).

    There you have it. You are the new GM. What are your first moves?

  22. ProHabs says:

    I don’t think management considers Sergei or OB throughbreds.

  23. usversusthem says:

    Empty net goals against are still goals against. If those players racking up empty net goal minuses had been racking up pluses instead we might be looking at a 2-2 series right now. 

  24. nova scotia vees says:

    Short-handed goal…what a killer.  Are we the dumbest team in hockey??  Who doesn’t understand the importance of getting out of the second up 2-1…Hamrlik, obviously..

    Price…not good enough.  He always breaks your heart.  Can make good saves and then goal #4…Carey can’t find puck and leaves the net wide-open.   Then throws a tandrem…. Bye, bye Carey…

    Jacques Martin….please fire him!  Pulling the goalie with 2:35 to go…OMG…with their face-off dominance all series, and the Retchkin line on…clueless….

    Too bad boys…many of you played your hearts out, only to be undone by idiotic mistakes and stupid coaching.

     

     

  25. SUMO says:

    When the Caps strategy in Game 2 appeared to be to crash then JM should have gone to OB for Game 3. It was after a loss and a tweak in the line-up was needed. Especially when it became apparent the Caps started to pick up on MAB as the weak link. (This really should put to bed any debate on MAB as a top-4 DMAN or his return to to the Habs next year)

    Also, I like Price’s reaction tonite. He cares and wants to win. Was it immature? Yes but its that competitive fire that many have questioned abt him that this move answered.

    Next season PK Subban AND Yannick Weber are both right-handed shots and could do just fine launching one-timers. My money is on Weber. I really think the Habs mgt will be patient on PK as he is easily our best prospect in the organization, regardless of what hockeysfuture.com thinks.

  26. SeriousFan09 says:

    What’s the motivation for the other team to deal that guy for ours (of which there are maybe 10 like him in the NHL) Every guy on Markov’s grade is either older or younger and most of these teams aren’t going to trade their younger guy for the older guy without serious concessions and the older guys have shorter shelf lifes and we’d have to hope they don’t degenerate into what Hamrlik is for us now after 2 years or so.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  27. ooder says:

    i just thought of the sheer stupidity of constantly benching SK and OB

    they are young players who montreal should work with and build thier core.

    A great 2 way forward, who is fast, can take a hit and has great vision and skill.

    A 6″6 defense men who is the only one on the habs who can throw a hit and can punish the oponent physically.

    instead, JM and his agenda play career AHLers like Darche and completly one dimensional players like MAB over these two.

    Darche played for 3 freakin minutes in game 3. do you honestly think sk couldn’t have played more and better???

    Hamrlik clearly can’t keep up anymore… so scratch O’Byrne?!?!? why not play cammy or sk74 on the point.. why keep trying the same failed recipe over and over again… when have the second wave of d-men ever created a goal on the PP?

    i am so frustrated that the guys whould should be developing and gathering experience are getting the short end of the stick

    and then we wonder why we have to over pay for free agents.

    ——————

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

  28. sisu says:

    This series was won years ago.  2003 through 2006, to be exact.

    Over this period, one club went 52-87-22-3 (.460), and for its efforts was rewarded with Alexander Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom.  The other team went 83-61-16-4 (.567) and was rewarded with Kyle Chipchura and David Fischer.

    The key to NHL success: be sufficiently awful in the most opportune years.

  29. SeriousFan09 says:

    Gionta wouldn’t have given us the go-ahead goal if not for Markov’s work on the PP. It was Hamrlik that threw this game away for us. Markov did not make a game-breaking error that switched the whole game against Montreal in this playoff series at any time, Hamrlik’s been giving the game away every time he’s been on the ice. Markov was all over the ice tonight trying to make offence happen as well.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  30. gmd says:

    For the next game, keep O’Byrne in, sit Hamrlik, and move Spacek back to his normal side. No need for MAB to play since the PP has been crap of late.  Start Price.

  31. Wops says:

    The Markov stat with the minus is bogus, 2 empty nets…. same with all the players that were on the ice.

  32. doug says:

    I didn’t like the team as designed in the off-season.  It’s been better than I thought it would be, but not good enough.  The problem is we’re stuck with it and can’t do anything with the cap.

    As for Carey, I prefer Jaro.  Carey will likely stay, but I really do not like the guy’s personality.  Laid back and boring at times and juvenile at others.  I find it hard to cheer for him, and that’s a first for me for a Habs player.  I also just don’t trust him – am always on edge when he’s playing.  Bad karma, bad luck, bad positioning, bad (young) age, or bad head. . . he’s not where we need him to be whether that is our total mismanagement and premature anointment of him or his own fault.  I think it’s more of the former.

    As for the future, say goodbye to Pleks.  He won’t sign to be the top forward on this team because he can get paid more elsewhere and without the headache.  I watch Nashville and those guys have such a fun team.  We are what we are and Pleks is quite aware of who he’ll be playing with because if he gets $5M then it’s Gionta, Gomez, Cammalleri, and him for the next four years, and the first two are just getting older.  Oh, and we have lost SKost for whatever reason so he’ll go and we’ll get less out of his brother until he leaves.  Dumb.  No sense of people management.

    I wanted to use our cap space more wisely but we didn’t.  Now I want a rebuild by selling off the parts Toronto style (but while keeping the draft picks, dumbo).  I also want Boucher to coach.  But we just signed Gauthier – he of the short-sided Moore trade (he’s been a revelation, but a rental for a second round pick shows nobody gets how far off we are), we’re paying Carbo and Martin has 3 more years on the books.  So I see no reason for optimism.  I didn’t July 15th and I don’t now.  This is unprecedented for me because the cap is new and because we mismanaged it.

    End rant.  Thoughtful replies only, please.  I don’t need vitriol and personal attacks from children. 

  33. smiler2729 says:

    If 29 other GMs are salivating over him, well then, let’s see if we can’t get somebody just as puckmoving and defensive BUT with more burning desire to win. Just an opinion, eh, one which I always get crapped on for.

  34. Propwash says:

    You sir.. deserve a beer

     

    Goalies in Montreal have two roles, netminder and scapegoat. 

  35. sidhu says:

    You mean 3 more games :)

  36. smiler2729 says:

    Oh man, Markov is soooo overvalued here

  37. hockeydoc says:

    rarely does a team that backs into the playoffs make it past the first round. i still wonder where we would be now if we had played the last week of the season and drawn buffalo????????????????????????

  38. Born in a Bad Year says:

    Only Sergei and O’Byrne in the positive for the series.  Better bench them.

    SK on a top line must make sense to everyone in the universe except JM.

    In one game O’Byrne outhit or tied every Hab for hits in the SERIES except Gorges, one more hit and he would have tied Gorges for the most hits on the team.  If JM had let him take a regular shift instead of MAB he would have easily had the most hits this series.  IN ONE GAME.  But no, we have had so much success with our offensive spark lineup.  The constant for this crappy run of games we have had was MAB played poorly defensively when we got behind, which of course made JM put him out more to try to score goals. 

    O’Byrne passed Spacek for shots on net and is tied with Hamerlik. In one game.

    Let no good play go unpunished.

    I wish SK and O’Byrne the best and look forward to their success on what ever teams are lucky enough to pick them up for nothing after JM is finished trying to screw them over.

  39. sidhu says:

    I like SK a lot, but he’s a guy who won’t get a fair shot in Montreal, he’s better off going elsewhere, where he’ll get minutes and score 20 or so.

     

  40. SeriousFan09 says:

    At this point, naming a Captain is a meaningless stunt that won’t change anything. Next training camp, Gionta will have a C on his jersey I’m sure though.

    Markov, I still don’t like putting too much pressure on what he’s done this year. Realistically, a skating defencemen who spends months recovering from a tendon injury that seriously impacts the most essential part of his game is not going to be perfect for the rest of the year. Tonight, he did all he could offensively to make things happen I think and assisted on a big goal for us. His having to spend games 1-3 propping up MAB was a waste of his talents and overworked a guy who hasn’t been 100% this season. At the end as well, it comes down to the fact that there is no free agent to replace him and he’s a giant part of our blue line and generally, he is the team MVP in any full season. I think next season, we’ll more a Markov we’re more used to seeing, rather than the flashes we’ve had this year.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  41. sidhu says:

    Guys I do not want to see in a Habs uniform next season:

    Hammer
    MAB
    Moore
    Darche
    Spacek (nice guy, too expensive)

  42. Kingofswing74 says:

    yeah hes insane. i dont get it

  43. JustSomeguy says:

    This team, at least, is emphatically not rolling over and playing dead like the ’09 team.

    And, frankly, with some good, young d-men coming along, Hamrlik and MAB can both be shown the door … next  year’s team will be better. O’Byrne should be the physical presence in front of the net Hamrlik isn’t, and Subban has a far better understanding on when to dive-bomb the offensive zone, and when not to, than MAB has ever had.

    And then the Habs just have to find a way to shed Gomez’s monumentally bad contract to free up some cap space.

  44. Propwash says:

    We still have 1 more left. Stranger things have happened….

     

    Goalies in Montreal have two roles, netminder and scapegoat. 

  45. light_n_tasty says:

    Boone…kinda misleading “-2″ for Markov in the third period.  Yes, he was on for both empty net goals.  That’s where he got his -2.  I’m not really sure that stat is any kind of comment on Markov’s play.

  46. MikeL says:

    Where he fits? Is that a joke?

  47. smiler2729 says:

    Good ALN, Boone.

    Tonight showed us (or rather those of us who want to look) of what next year’s Habs will be and won’t be.

    They will have a never say die attitude led by Brian Gionta (is he amazing with his baseball bat quick stick or what?) and Mike Cammalleri (all heart and SOUL),  they will have a younger defence (O’Byrne tonight proved what I thought all year, he is now where Mike Komisarek was in 2006, on the verge of mattering big time) and hopefully with a veteran presence as a partner (please sign Marty Turco!) Carey Price can start putting it all together.

    I always wonder where Andrei Markov fits in when his playoff performances are done.

    And also for Butch Bouchard’s sake, let’s name a CAPTAIN! Gionta, Gorges, Gill, someone!

  48. MikeL says:

    I ranted to a buddy of mine a few days ago about Roman Hamrlik constantly getting caught pinching or turning it over on the PP. It happens all the time. Pretty sure 3 different times this series which led to a goal. Why can’t Josh Gorges play that point? It’s not like Hammer is a PP force for the 45 seconds he’s out there.

    I actually think he’s slower skating back after an error than when he has the puck skating forward. I don’t think he could catch Georges Laraque.

  49. Kingofswing74 says:

    roman hamrlik is the reason we lost that game. every member of the team played 2 perfect periods, and they had the capitals by the balls. but then hamrlik, the “seasoned vet” makes a lazy stupid ridiculous play and reminded goliath how powerful he can be. the canadiens one mistake in 40 minutes came from the most overpayed useless defenseman on the team. and you cant make one mistake against the capitals. they should scratch hamrlik next game. sergei would have been scratched had it been him, and he was on fire. for 20 minutes. until JM put his fire out by playing him for 8 minutes all game. its like JM is actually an idiot.

  50. PeterD says:

    For god sake put MAB in the press box for the next game…he is nothing but a defensive liability out there…keep O’B  We need size on our back end and not MAB’s liabilities.  I don’t care if he has a shot or not, and he has done nothing on the power play…besides he won’t be with us next year so move on and take a chance with real defencemen.

  51. SeriousFan09 says:

    Who takes over for him if he goes? Nobody, that’s who. Who can we sign to replace him? No one of his quality is UFA this season and they’d want 7 million minimum likely to play here anyway. Markov is easily the best defencemen on this team and his 50, 60 point seasons as a defencemen can’t be replaced by anyone we can easily acquire.

     

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  52. Chris says:

    Goal: The Habs COULD keep both guys if they really wanted. But I don’t think they really want to, nor do I think the two goalies want to both be re-signed. Both guys want to be #1’s and both have shown that, at least in the regular season, they are capable of carrying the team for a while. I don’t really care which one they keep…I seem them as pretty interchangeable. Brodeur and Luongo have wet the bed as much as Halak in the playoffs (and Brodeur for the third straight year, at that). At some point, fans start to realize that the team stinks, not the goalies.

    Defense: As Bugs said, Subban is pretty much a lock. But I think Habs fans will be in for a surprise when they see how many brain-cramps HE can have in the defensive zone. Carle is intriguing, Weber is just too small on a defence corps that is already full of small, non-physical defencemen that struggle in their own zone.

    I guess if I’m the GM, I buy out Hamrlik, move Spacek back to his natural left side and promote Subban to play on the third-pairing with Gill.  Go with Markov-O’Byrne, Spacek-Gorges and Gill-Subban.  And believe me, I don’t like that defence corps any more than you should.

    Forwards: Ugh. This is the depressing part of the team. Gomez is emphatically not a #1 center anymore, and is WAY overpaid to be a #2 center. Plekanec brings the same skillset as Gomez, is younger and probably cheaper…but the Habs can not unload Gomez, so they very well might have to unload Plekanec. How Gauthier solves the problem of featuring two smallish centers that aren’t great on faceoffs will go a long way to determining whether this team can compete moving into next season.

    As for the rest, Gionta and Cammalleri are not as similar as people make them out. Gionta is a leader, he is an excellent forechecker and is our most responsible forward defensively. Cammalleri brings little in those departments. That they can both score is great, but you COULD keep both guys.

    I think both Kostitsyn’s are gone via trades, maybe packaged with a goalie.  They just don’t fit with what Martin is trying to do as a coach, and I can’t see him keeping them if he gets promoted to GM.  Darche and Metropolit are almost certainly out of here.  White and Pacioretty will probably join the big club.  Trotter could get a long look, but the farm is pretty devoid of talent that could make an impact as top-6 forwards in the NHL.

    The UFA market is terrible this summer, particularly for top-6 forwards that might contribute some size (Frolov is the best bet, but he is as inconsistent as AK46!).  No Knubles to be had.  So the Habs are going to really have to look at trades.  And few things in this life scare me more than the Habs’ professional scouting department getting asked for their input.

    Coaching: I liked Martin’s hiring in the off season (mea culpa!), but now I would love to see him out of here. I thought he could stabilize the team’s transition game and instill a forechecking system that actually applies pressure. Wrong on both counts. Unfortunately, he’s not going anywhere, and Boucher can’t do much with this poorly constructed team either. Guy Boucher is the latest in a long line of coaches and players doing well in the AHL that get identified as white knights.

  53. ManApart says:

    Price will never become a top goalie in this league. He’s had many, many chances to shine and has failed everytime, including last night. Look at his record. You can’t do that bad even if you tried. So think about that, before you call him thre future. I’m sick of him and all those who are in love with an average golaie at best. Hope he’s traded for something that can help this team.

  54. smiler2729 says:

    Hamrlik got 2 assists tonight… yet basically screwed the whole game up by his last second mistake SH’d in the 2nd.

    Where’s the love for Hammer? But Markov continues to get the accolades when he has consistently NOT shown up en force in the playoffs. Even Plekanec ahs elevated his playoff game from little girl to big girl this season.

    I don’t get this constant affection for Markov, yes, talented in unseen, underappreciated defensive ways BUT invisible a-la-Malakhov when NEEDED MOST.

  55. HardHabits says:

    I came up with this theory last season. More and more people are realizing what ails the Habs and it’s a lack of top picks. Until the Habs string together a few losing seasons and nab some gems at the entry draft we’ll be watching 1st round exits and the occasional 2nd rounder with certitude.

  56. ooder says:

    i just watched the ovechkin goal (the 2nd one) and wtf was pouliot watching while semin was skating with the puck..

    ——————

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

  57. J. Ambrose says:

    Chris: gotta say, my own thoughts parallel much of yours, almost exactly. The only exception would be Metro, whom I believe will stick around. We need one more young-ish, quick defenseman, and he won’t be easy to find. And I see Hammer getting traded, either alone or in tandem with one of the goalies and perhaps with a Kostitsyn or two. And, yeah, we’ll likely see White and Patches up here. Definitely for training camp to see how they do. But the challenge is going to be to find a forward or two with size. Or, if Pleks bolts, that long-coveted big center.

    As for Martin, I personally never liked that signing, so I’m guiltless there. He turned out exactly as I expected. A fresh approach is needed with a coach who understands the changes in the game.

  58. zozotheclown says:

    Got back from the game a little while ago, it was a good game to watch overall, just a bad ending. We dominated the play for most of the first two periods but that tying shorthanded goal with 6 sec left in the 2nd really broke our spirit, how could it not. At least we showed some fight after that, but you could tell it wasn’t the same team playing.

    One thing to note, although we dominated the shot count after 2, the game wasn’t THAT lopsided, we shot from everywhere, and most of the shots were harmless. Although both teams shot from everywhere, I think alot of our shots just lacked speed or accuracy, the caps pick corners when given the chance, we gave Varly a few too many easy ones, but still were the better team after two.

    Hammer had an awful game, that goal to me crippled our chances in the game and series, and he was the D who blew coverage, not to mention he or MAB weren’t very good on the 4th. Finding a buyer would be great in the summer, free cap room and make a spot for Subban, plus Spatch could go on his usual side, won’t eb easy to find takers at that price though.

    Speaking of Price, he was good, made good saves, but we needed spectacular. Varlamov was spectacular for much of the 2nd, we made it easy sometimes, but he also made some big glove saves. Its unfair to constantly expect that from our goaltenders, but for us to beat Wsh we need spectacular, not average. That said, not much chance on any goal, very untimely D breakdowns. I would go with Halak next game if only to thank him for getting us to the show, since I think the dance is over at this point.

    Ovy is a talented player but a HUGE asswipe for stuff like this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tzta6AESBEU. I really hope someone gets him for it, but it probably won’t be us. On the topic of immaturity, not a fan of the Price penalties. Its his 3rd playoffs, time to grow up, shooting the puck at celebrating players? It wasn’t even a dirty goal or anything, no reason for that, I know he’s just frustrated, but technically theres still a chance to come back at that point, technically… It’s better then flipping off fans I guess, but not by much.  

  59. HabsFanInVictoria says:

    Moore works hard… he’s not so bad.

  60. thirdstone says:

    Your assessment of Price is ridiculous. To judge someone’s personality one must get to know the person. You need to become familiar with the reason/meaning behind what they say/how they hold themselves. Your ignorance betrays itself when you say something like “I dont trust him”. Based on what could you trust or not trust him? You dont KNOW the guy. Everyone criticizes him for this reason, but they don’t consider that maybe his aloof appearance is due to the fact that he’s just a weirdo. For example, my brother has the same way of holding himself; most people think he’s an idiot/doesn’t have feelings. They just don’t understand him. He’s like Carey, a protoge pilot who’s been obsessed since a very young age, yet most people tell me that “he doesn’t seem to be that into it.”

    What other valid criticism do you have? Bad positioning? I invite you to substantiate this. Seriously, where is his positioning off.

  61. Bugs says:

    Right. For you, Amby.

    1) I try to keep both. But I don’t hang up the phone. Either one. vanRiemsdyk, Hall, whatever, gimme some RETURN, baby.

    2) Who knows what that Carle guy’s gonna do. Starts good, gets injured. We never know. Weber…depends on him. Needs more beef. Soobie’s written in stone. Doesn’t matter who stays 4, 5, or 6, so don’t worry about it.

    3) Moving Cammy, Gio or Gomie makes us look like Mickey Mouse, so forget it. My boy Poolio has kinda…slowed down. He’s supposed to be the “big boy”. The Ks…who can tell? Remmeber that gangster in Payback? “Mr.Bronson always says “If you don’t understand something, get rid of it.'” Moen on the 4th? Sure.

    4) I’d love to see Boucher up here. But like Jack Marty, he would need players too.

    5) My first move would be to call up da Oilers and offer’em the Ks and the Priceberg for their num1 pick and Sheldon Souray. Then, I’d try to move Sheldon Souray. Depending on how that works out, I’d see where I’d be at then.

    Superfluously redundant, I remain

    L.Bugs Potter, esq. Assistant-Director of St-Habbie’s Hospital for the Blind, Head Physician of Neuroflannelogy Unit, and Occupational Therapist in Habsbros Emergency Ward: http://habsbros.blogspot.com/

  62. J. Ambrose says:

    Ah, the post-mortem/autopsy/exhuming-of-the-body-to-look-for-signs-of-trauma, etc. I look forward to it. Til then, sharpen your scalpel.

  63. Mike Boone says:

    Very astute.

  64. Mike Boone says:

    Keeping my powder dry for Saturday.

  65. habs4cup says:

    but unfortunately, once a smurf always a smurf. did you think over a course of a year they would grow an inch?

  66. habs4cup says:

    what could they accomplish: alot of smurfism!

  67. notbigbird says:

    If we’re going to lose anyway, which we are, I don’t mind seeing some emotion from CP, Gomez and a few others. Good on them.

  68. HabFanSince72 says:

    Gainey transformed the team from one that no one wanted to play for into a very respectable team. He also cleaned up the farm system, and improved the organization in many ways (thanks also to Gillett).  I don’t think we should underestimate that. Guys like Gomez, Cammi, and Gill could have gone elsewhere.

    (I realize that might not have been a bad thing).

    He decided last summer that he had to put a competitive product on the ice right away, rather than go Toronto’s way and rebuild more slowly. Maybe Toronto will end up in better position than us in a few years time. Maybe not.

     

     

  69. CBrady12 says:

    No there isn’t

  70. HabFanSince72 says:

    Metro is not the way forward.

     

  71. Mr.Hazard says:

    Price’s play struck me as almost identical to Halak’s overall performance in this series. He played well, but not spectacularly. Victim of a better team. I wouldn’t be surprised to see either goaltender in nets on Friday.

    And Boone’s comment about Price next season is premature, and unfair to Halak. Where is it coming from? From one average performance (a loss) in the playoffs??? Not a win in 50 days (though I know he hasn’t played much), showing that he “cares” by being immature at the end of the game… He was anointed #1 when he came here, stumbled at it, sost his job to his smaller, (arguably) less-gifted back-up, for lack of work ethic and steadiness….

    Are you sure you want this guy to be the one you rely on? I’m not.

    “love cannot drown truth, Nefertiti”

  72. dicktracy says:

    Get rid of Pouliot, Lapierre, Darche, Moen, Gill, Hammer, Spacek, Mara, MAB, Halak. Bring up the dogs. Evaluate. Train. Look at 2012 draft. Evaluate.

  73. Chris says:

    I can’t even begin to understand this…are you being sarcastic?

    Because if you are going to lose because you don’t have the talent level to compete, at least lose with dignity and class.  I think that was Clay’s point, and certainly one that I heartily endorse.

    I was happy when Claude Lemieux left town because, while a good player, he tarnished the legacy of players like Beliveau and Henri Richard.  I was happy when Ribeiro was traded because he too had crossed that line. 

    There is no level of sports, from the youngest tykes to the professional athletes, where flicking the ball/puck at the celebrating opposing players would be considered ANYTHING but petulant.

  74. Chris says:

    Plenty of them…do you honestly think anybody would watch/follow this particular team unless they were a real fan?  :)

  75. habsoul says:

    I liked Price’s response as well. I want players who hate to lose.

    Boone, most days I think you have have the greatest job in the world. 

    This is not one of those days.

  76. notbigbird says:

    HIO is a privately run site where the owners or managers are free to control the content. To be fair they let a lot go. Can’t remember your post specifically, so I’m not commenting on that.

  77. Bob Barker says:

    Yeah Price would have benefited from a full season in the AHL like Tuukka Rask. He made a lot of big saves last night especially at the beginning of the third when the game was still tied. Hamrlik really cost the Habs the game by causing that momentum-sapping goal.

    Not having Spacek last night really hurt the D, Ovechkin got the best chances he’s had all series. 

    Anyways, both goalies are young and neither should be playing 70+ games. Having a solid tandem for another 2-3 years will help this team and in all likelihood increase the trade value of both of them. 

  78. habsoul says:

    Halak is gone, buddy. Montreal can’t afford to keep both guys and the organization badly wants Price to succeed.

    I love Jaro, but this series was his opportunity to show the world he is an elite goalie and he stumbled badly. I believe he can still become an elite goalie, but it won’t be with the Habs. 

    There’s no way to know if Carey will finally meet the great expectations, but he’s our goalie for next season.

  79. punkster says:

    I wouldn’t classify Pouliot, Darche, Moen, Gill, Spacek, Hammer, MAB or Halak as floaters. They actually work to the best of their abilities though a few may not be up to the standard we need.

  80. HabFanSince72 says:

    Have you ever thought of “cheering” for another team?

  81. Chuck says:

    So THAT’S the secret… get personal AND crude!  :)

    _____________________________________

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

  82. joeybarrie says:

    We played a pretty solid game last night. Other than the last minute of the 2nd that we had the PP, we played pretty hard. We were outmatched. We took all the shots, and played the game mostly better than they did. The difference was they capitalized on their chances much better than we did. But then again they are a BETTER team offensively. Varlamov played very well, and was fairly lucky. Price was not. Price played well. But in this case it was not enough. Price really had to have a GREAT game. Even though he had little chance on those goals, if he had of stole a few saves like Varly, different game.

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

  83. notbigbird says:

    I agree about a lack of consistency.

  84. Mr.Hazard says:

    Can’t say I agree with you on all points, but I think that at the moment, Price is not worth much more (in terms of contract) than Halak is. Obviously he is, but not significantly; he has worse career stats, and although he has more playoff experience, at an overall SV% of .895 and a GAA of 3.19, I’m not sure it necessarily works to his favour.

    My point wasn’t so much saying we should choose Halak over Price, more of a “I’m not sold on Price”.

    “love cannot drown truth, Nefertiti”

  85. Mr.Hazard says:

    Well put.

    “love cannot drown truth, Nefertiti”

  86. punkster says:

    Mike…you comments….ahh crap, I’m not gonna go there.

    I’m disappointed with the results but actually surprised the Habs have been able to play so well against the Caps. It will be nice to get away from this for a few months, pick up the clubs and get involved in a game that we know we can win (???). Enjoy the links and get out here for that round I owe you.

  87. joeybarrie says:

    RON HEXTALL……

    Two options to react to the frustration. Show some pride and do something about it a la Gomez last game, or just take it…….. Do you think Patrick Roy would have just sat there and take it????

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

  88. Jbird says:

    That’s just weird – how old was the kid? 7?

  89. Chuck says:

    Well then, I suggest that we defer to Mr’s. Beliveau and Richard to speak to the incident. Not to put words into their mouthh, but I’m guessing that for them it would be a non-issue. Heck, the dude that was hit in the hip by the puck didn’t even react… that’s how lightly hit hit him.

    Should Carey have done it? In hindsight, no. Was it done with maliciousness? No.

    Are you really going to compare this to the Ribeiro incident?

    My point was, there was a LOT more that happened in that game that actually impacted on the outcome.

    _____________________________________

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

  90. punkster says:

    I mean in general Mike, throughout the season.

  91. Aybara says:

    Sounds like we got a case of NHL refferee syndrome here…

  92. The Cat says:

    I dont get the habs, I look at this team on paper and think its a good team that should be able to compete with anybody, and yet, if they dont get exceptional -not just good or very good- but exceptional goaltending; they wont win.

  93. joeybarrie says:

    Thats about as stupid as saying why play Halak with his ONE overtime playoff win????

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference….

  94. The Cat says:

    I hope the habs use that kid as a rallying point…And if they’re going to lose, make sure a few Caps are softened up for the next round.

    Im glad Price flung the puck at the caps celebration, at least he gives a shit. The momentum was changing and nothing was done…See Lindy Ruff call a timeout when Boston scored 2 quick ones, thats how you coach.

  95. Bob Barker says:

    Yeah it’s too bad we don’t have anyone on our team who can fire the puck like Ovechkin. His second goal was ridiculous. USS Hal Gill should have just lied down. 

  96. The Cat says:

    I also think this is where the Montreal media could have a positive impact for once: talk about this relentlessly until it becomes a story in Canada and then beyond, and Ovechkin has to answer to it publically…Take the wind out of his sails.

  97. G-Man says:

    Starting Price changed nothing. Halak should play in Washington Friday. He’s the goalie that brought the team this far. This team is better than last season’s already by virtue of 1 playoff game victory.

    Like most have noticed on this site: not enough size going to the opposition’s net? No, too many cowards who don’t. 3 goals last night scored by Cammy and Gionta (huge guys those) and the 3rd by Moore (who’s no giant either). Playoff games are rarely won by dominating the perimeter with nary a soul in front of the opposition’s netminder. Taking shots from virtually beside the net won’t work either. Drive the net and run over Varlamov. Otherwise, watch other teams advance. It’s that simple.

  98. mrhabby says:

    i was just getting tired of this price/halak thing.

  99. The Cat says:

    I got a question (if it hasnt been asked already) any Montreal reporter can ask Boivin or the GM next time a press conference arises.

    How much swagger/influence can a coach have in the dressing room if the players think the coach got the job mostly because of his language skills? 

  100. Steve in Kingston says:

    ARE YOU EFFING KIDDING ME???

    Not only is Carey Price NOT clutch, he’s an idiot.

    Cary Price is 0-8 in his last 8 playoff games.  He’s 5-11 lifetime in the playoffs.

    I hope we’ve seen Carey Price for the last time.  What a colossal ongoing disappointment

  101. punkster says:

    Yes I’ll admit to loving them hahaha. Best thing? No, far from it. I hoped for better and cheered for them to win every game but I knew they weren’t top echelon after the first few weeks last fall. But I don’t have a hate on for them and I do believe they have the nucleus of a solid team developing. You said in an earlier comment there were 20 floaters and to that I disagree. There ARE some lazy floaters (4 or 5) and there ARE overvalued stinkers (a couple) and as of last night there’s a goalie who needs a good spanking and a trip to a southern franchise to smarten his ass up. But the rest of them are good, solid and hard working. Just wait til next year :)

  102. CharlieHodgeFan says:

    I’d assume the players, especially the experienced ones, are too intelligent to think that. I wouldn’t worry.

  103. badbalance says:

    Calling up PK would be a gutsy move, if they think of it. Him and Markov would do magic together..

    Would be the very last hope.

  104. HardHabits says:

    Not a money goaltender yet that’s for sure. I still think he’ll get better.

  105. SeriousFan09 says:

    Jaro Halak Blew it in front of the world for Finland-Slovakia, gave up the lead.

    Jaro Halak, the last 3 games of the year where we needed playoff points? Garbage play, backed into the post-season. Don’t care how many others he won, those games had to be won and he failed.

    Jaro Halak blew Game 2 badly, and didn’t exactly put on a game-saving performance in game 3. Were those goals particularly his fault? No but he didn’t make those-game-changing saves either to make something happen.

    Sorry buddy, but Halak has not proven he can play when it is all on the line and when a win has to come around.

     

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  106. Bob Barker says:

    I agree. Although I find Gainey did quite a few good things, he definitely made some mistakes. Not Leafs-scale mistakes but mistakes nonetheless. 

    I think bringing in Gomez, Gionta and Cammalleri were solid moves. I still think Pouliot (who played pretty well last night) will be better than Latendresse. 

    Having Hamrlik at 5.5 million and trading Ribeiro for a useless player instead of draft picks were not so good.

    Anyways, shedding some dead weight and having PK Subban next year will make the Habs significantly better. LA wouldn’t be half as good without Doughty playing 30 minutes per game. Hopefully PK can have a similar effect.

  107. Clay4bc says:

    Actually, he’s lost 9 in a row now, I believe.

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  108. RJ says:

    Dude, you really need to think your posts through before sending them. Was Slovakia REALLY expected to anything in the Olympics? He beat the Russians as part of a magical run but that means nothing, right? Maybe someday, Price will be as good as Rask.

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  109. Puck Bard says:

    “I’m so glad we had this time together…”

    And as we draw to a close I am reminded of two things:

    1.  The HIO posters after game 1 who kept saying, “Hey! We can play with these guys!”

    2.  The HIO poster after game 1 (of the season) who said, “Hey, we’re no better than a beer league team”

    Adieu, à la prochaine fois.

  110. SeriousFan09 says:

    Since Rask has Boston at a 3-1 series lead over Buffalo, that’s actually sharp praise you realise?

    They had a good team in Slovakia, same sharp guys on the team and they did extremely well for themselves, played as a team and it worked out. Finland was reeling, down 4-1 after 40 minutes? Then they came back, Halak fell down in nets. It’s how it goes, you can win as much as you like before it really is all on the line but if you can’t win then, it’s not worth much.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  111. Tis Himself says:

    If we knew The System the way Jacques Martin knows The System, well ‘er, we’d be down three games to one too!

  112. likehoy says:

    way too much number crunching for me at the moment. all i know is at the start of next year, we need a new coach.

    it doesn’t matter who hits the ice on defense, our organization has too many young players to satisfy jacques martin.

    it took bob 5 years until he brought in an AHL coach that properly developed players, but his AHL coach doesn’t match the NHL coach’s style which will hurt the development of players who are used to winning one way in the AHL, and have to learn to lose in a different way in the NHL.

    - Habs Romance (Lady Gaga remix) http://montreal.virginradio.ca/blogs/39/posts/464

  113. Offensive DMan says:

    Offensive Dman

  114. Offensive DMan says:

    Rather than many beating away (again) at the goalies (which solves nothing), in defence of both of them the Habs bigger problem is their mistake-prone defence.  When a big, fast team puts pressure on them wherever, they cough it up. Hamrlik and Spacek were among the league leaders in giveaways, consistently.  That has to change (specifically, them).

    In all honesty, when you have a guy whose only redeeming quality on-ice is a hard shot playing major minutes in 5-5 situations, you know you have some big holes, right? I’m thinking this is where the biggest problem lies, and not in goal.

  115. ManApart says:

    The thing about Halak or anyone else, whatever anyone wants to say, they can never get as bad aS Price’S mediocre record, the past 2 years. His record is the worst in the NHL during that time for starters, his playoff record is the worst in Habs history (9 straight losses), he has turned out to be a complete bust so far. Nobody could have ever imagined he would have been so ordinary, 3 years ago. I’m starting to wonder if he’ll ever turn it around….So say what you want about Halak, excellent year, and way more ups than downs, Price is much, much worse anyway you look at it.

  116. Clay4bc says:

    I am so tired of the Price experiment. Did he play poorly tonight? Not really…Did he play well? Again, not really… What he did do, though, is play stupid. Taking that cry-baby penalty (shooting the puck into the celebration) did not show that “he cares”, as some here erroneously think. It shows a serious lack of maturity. It shows that he cares more about himself than the team. It was a huge moment in the game. Eight minutes left, down by two goals, and he just let in a poor goal. His team needed those minutes to try to get back into the game. But Price had to throw a tantrum, and cost the team big time. Would they have come back without the penalty? We will never know, of course. But we do know that there was a much better chance to do so if Price didn’t decide to selfishly take that childish penalty and thus burn off 25% of the remaining minutes on the clock.

    Honestly, I can’t believe that people here (including the journalists) aren’t making a bigger deal about this. Is everyone here so blinded by the “Superstar’s” aura that they don’t see how dumb that was? I saiid berfore the game that his biggest problem was his lack of maturity. He again proved me correct. Too bad that he isn’t a better goalie, because if he was it would be easier to overlook his many faults.

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  117. ManApart says:

    I agree, Price has been so overrated since his JR. days it’s not even funny. I’d take a lot of the young goalies around the league ahead of him. Even in his own draft year, it’s looking like Rask is becoming the best goalie. The guy is so unnoteworthy, it’s not evn worth talking about.

  118. SeriousFan09 says:

    So many people was mad when goals went by Price and seemed lazy and not caring about it, now he’s in trouble for showing emotion, classic conundrum, he’s damned if he does show he cares and damned if he doesn’t.

    That game was lost well before that penalty and you can argue we two of our last encounters because Scott Gomez, the Veteran with years of playoff experience took terrible penalties, twice in two games that gave a serious advantage to Washington as we lost one of our top 2 centres to no gain. Why aren’t we readying some tar and feathers for Scotty for being the reason we lost games 2 and 3? Because it’s not on Price we lost Game 4.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  119. arcosenate says:

    I still can’t believe Hamrlik did that.

  120. Clay4bc says:

    Well, look back on my posts. SF…you will see that I was royally pissed at the stupidity Gomez showed at the time and afterwards…two wrongs don’t make a right though, so what does Gomez’s stupidity have to do with the stupidity of Price?

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  121. Clay4bc says:

    You could also add the word “again” to the end of your sentence…

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  122. CBrady12 says:

    No I’m not. Good ASSumption though. the guy asked if there is such a thing as freedom of speech in Canada and I simply said no. I don’t want to get into a political debate you probably wont understand anyway so I’ll just leave it at that, you can make whatever ASSumptions about me you want. 

  123. SeriousFan09 says:

    While Halak has still failed to prove he can be the man in the true clutch scenario, so why should we pin our hopes any further on him? He hasn’t proven he’ll be the solution, failed in all of his biggest games this season where success was everything except Game 1.

    Pushing the goalie experiment another year is the only sane solution, neither has given us what we need to say that either can be the answer going forward.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  124. SeriousFan09 says:

    Well I don’t read every post and so many people were upset about Gomez on those days but praising him on others I don’t exactly keep a scorecard on these matters, a lot of flip-flopping goes on around here. I didn’t say it made anything Price did right, but why should he be damned further for 1 game’s error than Gomez’s pair of games? I don’t like how this series is turning out, but I don’t see how either goalie can be relied upon to get us far into the post-season looking at their records right now.

    We all hoped we’d get an answer about who our No. 1 guy should be this year but at this point, we don’t know **** because both have not delivered when it was victory or nothing.

     

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  125. mrhabby says:

    hmmmm and i guess you have forgotten the players in front of Price or Halak were all …all stars to over the last 3 years. its a team game. its not all prices or halaks fault…this argument that price sucks or Halak sucks is stupid as if all the posters on here could do anybetter.

  126. HabFanSince72 says:

    Nothing to do with Hamrlik, but the Canucks sure made a great deal when they traded for Christian Erhoff for essentially nothing. San Jose had to dump his salary in order to sign crybaby.

     

     

  127. 24 Cups says:

    Bob – It will certainly be interesting to see where the bottom line is on Pleks and the two goalies.  It usually is higher than we expect.

    As for the others:

    SK74 – Not a lot of bargaining power.  Hasn’t established himself as an NHL regular.

    Pouliot – Will get a decent raise but shouldn’t break the bank.

    Pyatt – Bubble player who will get a slight raise.

    Laps – Lost some bargaining power due to his crappy season.  Will probably come back on a one year contract to reestablish his bargaining power.

    Moore/Metro- – Can we keep both?  Is Moore really as good as we think?  Is Maxwell a bust?  Has White been permanently moved to the wing from centre?  Is that where Laps should be in terms of his long term development?  Lots of dominoes here that are all interconnected.

  128. Chuck says:

    Play them each for a period-and-a-half.

    _____________________________________

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

  129. howtathor says:

    I agree that they are a competitive team but I don’t think they could have ever pulled off a comeback like the 6-5 one the Koivu led team pulled off against the Rangers. There doesn’t seem to have been a lot of thought gone into this team. It was just a case of grab every free agent available. We could have lived with one more year of Hamrlik (maybe) and Gionta and Cammalleri have been the best thing to happen to this franchise in years. Could you imagine Koivu with Gionta. How’s that for heart? or Cammalleri with Kovalev? or Komisarek clearing the front of the net? I don’t think there was such an urgency to blow up the team so completely. I won’t even get started on the coaching because it get’s me more riled than that guy on the Team990!

  130. Clay4bc says:

    Boone: “…Price drew two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties, the first for firing
    the puck into a gaggle of Capitals celebrating the Jason Chimera goal
    that made it 4-2, the second for whacking Nicklas Backstrom withg [sic] his
    stick … from the bench.”

    Why would the coach reward this type of behavior with a start?

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  131. mrhabby says:

    i doubt any of the goalies in the league could have stopped those lasers from OV but its the kids fault for not….are there any habs fans on this blog?

  132. mrhabby says:

    and price could go on to another team and become and excellent goalie. if and when that happens peeps will be wondering why he left….gotta laugh.

  133. B says:

    The minimum qualifying offers for the goalies are $.8925M for Price and $.84M for Halak. As RFAs, $6M for the pair sounds too high. I was thinking something like $4M to $4.5M for the pair.

  134. howtathor says:

    I agree with buying out Hamerlik to open up a spot for Subban. Don’t know about Mara, he seems pretty fragile and his contract is up. I would target a younger more durable stay at home defenceman. Still we would have Markov/O’byrne, Spacek/Subban, Gill/Gorges so the new guy would only be a seventh at best. I really don’t think we can block Subban and O’byrne any longer. 

    The main buyout I’d like to see is Martin. I know it has nothing to do with cap space but his coaching of this team has been a disaster. I’ve been to both playoff games and to see the team fold their tent when it mattered the most was unnacceptable. This team needs a coach that can sustain the energy level and better taste in ties too!

    Personally, I’d rather have Plekanec than Gomez. Both are undersized but Pleks has more upside and can be signed for a lot less than Gomez. There must be some team out there willing to take on Gomer’s contract even if we have to pay part of it.

    Either way I think the Molsons will have to be antying up serious coin to continue paying Carbonneau, Martin, Hamerlik et al. I think Bob Gainey will be washing bottles for a l-o-n-g time!

  135. Xtrahabsfan says:

    Our Habs would lose the fist fight’s so whats the point?

  136. arcosenate says:

    AGAIN.

  137. avatar_58 says:

    PK Subban. Say it with it. PK Subban. Our version of Taylor Hall, Sidney Crosby, etc. Already drafted, a year spent focusing his game in Hamilton. Beloved before he even put on the jersey.

    So you know what? Who cares about 2010. Just another dissapointment, but we got to see what the new guys can bring to the table. Bolster defense and hey – we got ourselves a hockey team worth cheering.

    I’ll be here next here cheering on Subban as he gives guys like Hamrlik a lesson in what a defenseman can do.

  138. 24 Cups says:

    Let’s say we buy out Hamrlik this summer.  The cost would be 1.8M a year for two years.  We would also have to use up another  salary to replace him in the line-up.  Our cap  hit for Dmen this year was 22M.  So looking at next year we have the following:

    Markov – 5.7M

    Spacek 3.8M

    Gill – 2.2M

    Hamrlik – (1.8M)

    Gorges – 1.0M

    O’Byrne – 725000 (doubles the next season)

    That adds up to 15.25M for 5 defensemen.  I would also budget another 2M for the following years to cover Markov’s contract extension.  That brings us to 17.25M with two spots open.  We need a defensman who can move the puck and other guy who can clear the front of the net.  Here are the candidates in the system and their estimated cap hits.

    Mara – 1.65M

    Subban – 875000

    Weber – 600-900 grand depending on bonus money

    Carle – RFA who might have to come back at the cap minimum of 550000.  Worst case cap hit would be the same as Weber’s.

    Bergeron – UFA

    So the question becomes how do you fill those two spots and how much are you willing to commit to in terms of coin and term?

  139. Chuck says:

    Leaving the best sniper IN THE WORLD in the middle slot from 10-12 feet… not once but TWICE, leaving a guy unattended off the far post for an easy tap-in, AND a shorthanded 2-on-1 with 10 seconds left in the second period… and Price flipping the puck at the goal celebration is what grinds your gears?

     


     _____________________________________

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

  140. Wamsley01 says:

    Place Rask in Montreal and tell me how his stats look.

  141. avatar_58 says:

    No more buyouts. We’re stuck with him till trade deadline – just deal with it.

  142. RJ says:

    Price has the physical tools but he is a head case.

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  143. 24 Cups says:

    If Subban gets the 7th spot then we are at 18.1.  We probably would want to use some of the cap space differential to help sign a goalie.  So let’s say we have 2M left to grab a physical 6th Dman.  Carle and Weber haven’t set the world on fire and they are both undersized, offensive minded players.  Subban is taking Bergeron’s job so MAB is gone.  Mara?  Obviously, Gainey thought he would fit the bill and so did most of us back in the fall.  Hey, some things don’t always work out as planned.  But he is the type of guy we are looking for.  It would really help balance out the squad if he was a right handed shot.

  144. CBrady12 says:

    For a glimmer of hope for whats to come. In the bulldogs game last night, PK Subban scored his second goal of the game in double overtime to give the bulldogs a 3-1 series lead. He now has 6 points (3 goals, 3 assists) in 4 playoff games.

     

    Anyone think half of our D would be doing that well, even in the AHL. 

  145. Clay4bc says:

    Yes, Chuck, that’s what grinds my gears. Classless moves always piss me off more than talentless ones. Our team D is awful, yes. But Carey Price is a selfish baby who needs to grow up. He is representing the Montreal Canadiens out there on the ice, and should comport himself as such. There is no place for that kind of behavior on this team or in this league. I would expect such a move from someone like Avery, not from a member of this team.

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  146. 24 Cups says:

    58 – I can live with that – I was just trying to see how a buyout might impact our team. 

    A trade for Hamrlik?  5.5M is pretty steep for a guy who everyone knows stumbled badly in the playoffs.  There would be no return of any value for Hamrlik at this point in time.  In fact, we might have to sweeten the pot in order to dump the salary.  But if that happens, then we can use the extra coin to bring in a better Dman or utilize it to keep Pleks.

  147. RJ says:

    Seeing as the experts on this board were incorrect and Carey did not save us, I believe it is time for the Ultimate Plan B for tomorrow’s finale: Boucher behind the bench, Subban on D and Dryden in net.

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  148. Bob Barker says:

    If the Habs buy out Hamrlik, they’ll have about 15.75 million in cap space.

    Pleks should sign for 4-4.5 hopefully. 

    Both goalies for 6. 

    Then they should sign SK74, Pouliot, Pyatt and Moore, Lapierre. About $5.25 million left for all these players.

     

     

     

  149. RJ says:

    Because Price was picked fifth.

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  150. Chuck says:

    Ok, just so I’m clear on your priorities.

    _____________________________________

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

  151. Chris says:

    “My point was, there was a LOT more that happened in that game that actually impacted on the outcome.”

    Couldn’t agree with you more.  And that will be the dominant topic of conversation for the summer…neither goalie could do much with the lineup in front of them.  It is just a completely strange mix of players where the whole is less than the sum of the parts.  I thought Price actually played a reasonable game last night…there was no goal where I cringed internally.  Good shots by excellent players in dangerous players will result in goals.

    A big part of sports is keeping your composure and not letting the other other team get into your head.  Price let the Capitals know that they had gotten into his head by losing his composure.  But regarding his behaviour, I am absolutely going to compare this to the Ribeiro incident…both players showed a patent disregard for fair play and/or sportsmanship.  I think Ribeiro’s behaviour was marginally worse for having gone unpunished, but both were acts of extreme immaturity.  Does it make him a bad person?  No.  But he is getting a little old to have to apologize for things that wouldn’t be acceptable in any league he has ever played in growing up.

  152. Clay4bc says:

    Didn’t boston only get a point or two more than the Habs this season? Great team there…

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  153. goalieguy says:

    I am dreading 24 hours of flame wars between the Price camp and the Halak camp.

    I don’t understand why Habs fans need to support their guy by ripping down the other one.

    As for who should start, I would personally go back to Halak because I don’t think any of the goals in Game 3 were his fault, and there was only one in Game 2 that I’d call a softie (the tying goal with a few minutes left). But you know  – you could make a strong case for either guy. Price played well last night and the D didn’t play much better for him than they did for Jaro.

    Either way, I don’t see the Habs going anywhere against this Caps team.  But whoever Martin starts in game 4, that’s the guy they are going to try hardest to sign to a long-term deal in the off-season.  They are making a statement about who they see leading this team into the future.  I don’t think there is any chance that both guys will be back next year. And if I were a betting man, I think the Habs will go with Price and deal Halak.

  154. HabsfaninMA says:

    Well, Rask played the same teams that the Montreal goalies played, and it’s not like there is no pressure in Boston. There was a lot of pressure this year because there were high expectations from the Bruins.

  155. Clay4bc says:

    Good point…and really, when I think about it, why not start Price? We will likely lose the game no matter which goalie starts, so may as well make it an even 10 playoff losses in a row for Price.

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  156. Frustrated_old_Habs_fan says:

    Stuff them both in the net…

  157. 24 Cups says:

    Howard – Everybody respects Bob Gainey as a man and what he represents as a person of character.

    Sadly, it appears that as GM he has left a dog’s breakfast for the new management team (which really isn’t that new:-) as they move forward.

    The Habs will be celebrating another anniversary in three years and it won’t be pretty. No need to order a cake or roll out any memorabilia.

  158. avatar_58 says:

    At least Carey tried to get thsoe people out of his net. Unlike our defenseman who just watch in horror

  159. Chris says:

    I don’t have much of a hate for them either, Dave (well, except for Gomez, but you knew that!).  I have just felt a bit of a helpless exasperation about seeing the inevitable result of the roster overhaul.

    There are definitely some building blocks.  Gionta has established himself as the captain of the team next season.  Markov recovered nicely form his foot injury and should be fully back to 100% by next season.  Cammalleri has struggled since returning from the knee injury, but he will be an important cog in the Habs’ offence for the next 5 years.

    On defence, O’Byrne really made strides this year and Gorges has shown that he can be a very valuable third-pairing defenceman (so long as he recognizes that this is the most effective use of his skills) and fill-in for injured defencemen.

    Halak and/or Price are a solid pair of goalies, although the continued immaturity of Price is starting to grate me as much as it seems to grate you.

    But there is a lot to do still, and it will take a couple of seasons to get there.

  160. fuhgawz says:

    As for Carey getting a couple penalties — who cares ?? Its not like we score when we have a powerplay

    and as stupid as it was from Carey all i can say is — well at least he shows some emotion

    not like that LOSER we have behind the bench claiming to be a caoch.

     

  161. fuhgawz says:

    what did i say that was soooooooooooo bad that my post got deleted? if it was the phrase jackass is that so harsh? everyone even my 5 year old niece knows a jackass is a donkey like really some modes on site let murder run free and penalize you for voiceing an opinion — is there no such thing as freedom of speach in Canada?

     

  162. punkster says:

    Steve, I’ve been following this thread and what concerns me is that we continue to be afraid of losing a player with that dreaded word “potential”. Last summer’s gutting didn’t go far enough because we ran out of cap space. Time to finish the job and lose the floaters in this toilet bowl.

  163. RJ says:

    Notice how quiet the board is today without all the Price rooters complaining about Halak? Say anything negative about The Franchise? Never!

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  164. Bob Barker says:

    I say we sign one goalie and then offer sheet Backstrom for the league maximum. We either get Backstrom or eff over the Caps by having them pay more than they would have. 

     

  165. SeriousFan09 says:

    I suspect Hamrlik will be gotten rid of somehow, buyout if necessary even. I think Spacek will stay because he has been a pretty solid guy down the stretch, much better than Hamrlik on a year where for the first time in his NHL career, he played his off wing and has done pretty well, despite his modest offensive contributions.

    Markov-OB/Subban

    Spacek-OB/Subban

    Gill-Gorges

    We’ll see how it goes, but depending upon how Subban and OB play, one will be the partner for Spacek and one for Markov and it may alternate through the year.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  166. megagoten says:

    after seeing how MAB can sink the habs, i’d rather we lose weber to KHL than have him as a pp specialist

  167. Mr. Biter says:

    Went to the Dogs game tonight (had the habs game on VCR but seemed to see all the goals when I went for rums). I don’t believe Weber played and if he did was no factor. P.K. however left me with mixed emotions odd for a player who scored 2 goals including the winner. He did not stand out at all during the first 3 periods (except great anticpation to go to the slot and score his first goal). No good hits , excellent rushes or crisp passes just a normal AHL player and not our next Great Hope. However during the overtime he lifted his game played a very physical game good defense and then pounds in the winner. I think leaving him down in Hamilton to devolp (again during the first 3 periods you barley noticed him) was the right move. If the dogs go far it will help his devolpment and I do believe he will be starting next saeson with the Habs.

  168. mbplekfan says:

    Our defence next year is looking a lot like:

    Markov-OB

    Subban-Gill

    Gorges- ?

    I dont see much room for Hammer or Spacek, but its going to be hard to get rid of both.

    Weber is a minor league PP specialist and doesnt have much potential as a full time NHL player.

  169. Rainrocket16 says:

    I am kind of thankful that we lost the way we did tonight! Just bare with me! All season long we have been enthralled in a huge goalie battle (I was in it as well). HAlAK is our man! Price is the Future! well I think tonight we can all reflect on what bogusness that all was. We forget sometimes to look for the obvious instead of the importance. Defence is what has ruined our season, not any one in particular but everyone! We can fly with the best of them but in the end we can’t stop other teams from attacking our zone. We did well this year! Really considering the circumstances, we did very well. (injuries, whole new lineup, new old coach.) I think this bunch will be much better next year! Just need to make th obvious changes. Offense is very impressive!!

    No Canadien team has a chance as long as Bettman is in control.

  170. Will Longlade says:

    It’s been a crazy season of highs and lows. However, the way I see this series is that if the Caps second goal gets called back in game 2, it would probably be the Habs leading the series 3-1. That’s why I’m not throwing in the towel just yet. Maybe the Habs can sieze back the momentum. Stranger things have happened and the pressure is off. Everyone has already written off the Hab’s season.  

  171. sidhu says:

    The only Habs who are plus players in the series are SK and OB

    MAB is -8

  172. Olay Olay Olay says:

    For a guy who’s fighting for a #1 spot on this team he certainly pulling some bone headed moves. The problem with Price was never his ability, his skill level is off the charts. It’s his attitude and tendency to pout that make him a liability. Why would a team of grown men follow a guy who acts like a 5 year old every time the going gets tough. Reminds me of a former Hab with outstanding skill and no character. You can spot true champions by how they react to losing rather than winning.  

    And no..Crosby would’ve have done that. He would have done exactly what good little robots are programmed to do, and maybe whine to the refs that the kid was in the way.

  173. Tis Himself says:

    You watch the Habs play with the “Sabre Dance” as background music and it is all good!

  174. Danno says:

    Must have been another one of Ovie’s roid rage moments. What an @sshole. I hate his funkin guts. Such a no-class piece of cr@p.

    He tought the kids a valuable lesson. There are jerks out there that just never grow up.

     

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

  175. Danno says:

    Game two will forever stand out in my mind as a classic example of game-fixing.

     

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

  176. Danno says:

    Everbody repeat after me: “Habs in seven!”

     

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

  177. habz says:

    I don’t usually drink beer…but I almost finished a case of 12 all by myself..thats how angry I was!

  178. Danno says:

    Are you trying to suggest I’m this?

     

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

  179. Danno says:

    I was so mad after THAT GOAL that I beat the living daylights out of the coffee table.

     

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

  180. Mrs.Price31 says:

    Well,

    We lost this series when we lost the last three games of the season

    We lost this series when we placed ourselves 8th and not 6th in the Eastern Conference

    We lost this series when we allowed the Caps to come back from a 3 goal deficit in game 2

    We lost this series when the whole team didn’t show up for the second and third period of game 3 (which was a crucial game of the series)

    We lost this series when they scored 2 short handed goals in 2 games

    We lost this series when we let Ovy have enough space to aim, shoot and score twice in game 4

    We lost this series when we put Darche and MAB in instead of SK and O’B

    We lost this series when we played either only 20 minutes of hockey or 40.

    So, I think you would agree with me when I say we have lost the series. So I get why Boone and I myself think that Price will get the start in game 5. Because seriously, we have nothing more to lose if we do start him. Someone below posted that the goalie who will start next game will probably be the goalie that will stay with us in the future. And I believe that. Because JM will put the goalie he believes might give the Habs a chance to win. Varly plays amazing because he has an amazing team infront of him who, he knows, will get rid of the rebound or the loose puck and clear it out the of the zone. Unfortunately, our two goaltenders don’t have a team like that infront of them. If JM starts Jaro game 5, then I’ll be very happy for him! Just because I am a Carey fan, it doesn’t mean that I don’t cheer on Jaro. If Jaro gets the start, that would be amazing. If Carey gets it, then it would be amazing too.

  181. habz says:

    I slammed and kicked every door in my house…while screaming “it’s over!..its F$%^!! over!

  182. Mr.Hazard says:

    The “why” should be directed at the team; and not just one: “WHY, WHY, WHY?” 22 minutes away from 2-0 in the series with a THREE GOAL LEAD??

    I know that if they win tomorrow, I will begin to hope again, only to even more painfully disappointed in Game 6!! It happens on a regular basis with this team. I felt my whole body sag when the Caps scored last night to make it 4-2. I had SO MUCH HOPE!

    “love cannot drown truth, Nefertiti”

  183. Mrs.Price31 says:

    The officiating sucks in this series.

    About the Carey being immature thing for taking 2 penalties makes me think.

    Last year, when a player was frustrated or upset, there was always ONE person who would make that player feel better. For an example, when Andrei Kostitsyn got hit last year in Phoenix, Sergei was angry and frustrated. Who calmed him down and talked to him? Oh wait, 13 years with the Canadiens rings a bell…ummm….OH YA! Saku Koivu! And what was he back then? He was our captain. He was always open with young players, he would always give them good advice and encourage them. Our captain is our coach, JM. Who doesn’t bother encouraging our younger players. No wonder Carey got 2 penalties in a row. If Saku was still with us, Carey would have probably gotten only one because Saku would talk things threw with him. It’s sad that our team doesn’t have a leader that can do what Saku did. Did any Habs player go up to Carey and tell him to calm down? No.

    We need a captain now than ever before. This team NEEDS another great leader. This team needs a captain who encourages our players. Who doesn’t lose hope. Gionta is the first player that comes into my mind when I think about our captain problems. Even Marky. But no one can be as great as Saku. Losing him was a BIG loss

  184. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Views on goaltending here are a bit schizo. 

    Either you believe that Halak had a “meltdown” (Fisher) and that Price wasn’t much better; OR

    that Washington simply has too many offensive weapons and would score on ANYONE.

    I believe the latter. The Caps won games 2 and 4 despite being dominated for 40 minutes each time, despite being made look ordinary and beatable. The difference is individual brilliance like that of Ovie, Backstrum, Semin, Knuble, each of whom proved they could reverse a game’s momentum through the slimmest window of opportunity.

    Neither goalie had a “Meltdown”. Halak allowed perhaps one softie. Both goalies were left vulnerable by defensive lapses. So I’d agree with those who say goaltending is not the problem.

    Instead, I’d suggest that the Habs did so much that was first-class in the first two periods last night, against the league’s leading team, that the foundation for a deeper run is already in place. What we need is perhaps two superior scoring threats, guys who would cap (excuse the pun) domination like we saw in Games 2 and 4 by putting the puck in the net.

    With a consistent increase in scoring, I think we’d find that most other departments — D, tending, special teams, forechecking, 3rd/4th lines — would prove well into playoff calibre.

    We have some valubale trading pieces: one goalie, the brothers, etc. Who do we want?

    (And not Matt Cooke, please!)

  185. Bob Barker says:

    Jeff Carter for both K’s and a goalie. Carter has already reached the upside AK46 has. Both have lethal shots except Carter is definitely the more consistent scoring threat. 

    Philly definitely needs a long-term solution in net and the k-bros do have trade value regardless of what some people think. 

  186. J. Ambrose says:

    I too miss Saku. I will always hold management in contempt for the classless way they parted with him.

  187. habsfan0 says:

    IMHO the Habs have the Caps EXACTLY where they want them. Habs in 7.

  188. habsoul says:

    What has hurt the Habs over the last decade or so is sustained mediocrity. Look at two of the dominant teams in the Eastern Conference, Washington and Pittsburgh. Both teams were rewarded for poor play with high draft picks they were able to turn into a core group of elite players. Montreal is always hovering around the playoff cutoff line, which translates to a pick in the middle of the first round. 

     

    2003 

    PIT (1) Marc-Andre Fleury

    MTL (10) Andrei Kostitsyn

    WAS (18) Eric Fehr

     

    2004

    WAS (1) Alex Ovechkin

    PIT (2) Evgeni Malkin

    MONTREAL (18) Kyle Chipchura

     

    2005

    PIT (1) Sidney Crosby

    MTL (5) Carey Price

    WAS (14) Sasha Poluluk

     

    2006

    PIT (2) Jordan Staal

    WAS (4) Niklas Backstrom

    MTL (20) David Fischer

     

    What we should be asking for is an end to the salary cap. If we can’t win a Stanley Cup, let’s buy one!

     

  189. Tis Himself says:

    “Embrace the Suck!” “Tank for Glory!”

  190. SPATS says:

    It’s really simple folks, Habs brass don’t want to win. If Carlson is good enuff to star for Washington, imagine (because brass will only let us imagine) how good PK would be instead of MAB. We wouldn’t be down 3-1 I’m sure. It’s enuff to make me wanna root for Toranna.

  191. Bob Barker says:

    I’m inclined to agree, except for rooting for the Leafs part. I would have liked to see Subban stay with the team after the Olympics. 2 pts in his first 2 GP is not bad at all. 

    That being said, no prospect’s development is hurt by spending a year in the minors. The Calder Cup playoffs will be good experience for him. 

  192. Tis Himself says:

    Forwards: Although close to the NHL average in size, with a few notable exceptions, they play small.

    Defensemen: Are less terrifying to opposition players than a Bugs Bunny cartoon.

    Goaltenders:  Generally played below expectations.

    Coaching: Awful, negligible, terrible, woeful. Pick your own …ful description.

    Result: Squeeking into the playoffs once again and being predictably dispatched with all due speed.

     

    “The Montreal Canadiens played in the Forum; the Habs play at the Bell Center!”  Boris LeDuc

  193. AH says:

    The Oilers have fired Kevin Prendergast as their chief scout. His awful drafts over the last 10+ years finally caught up to him. Tambellini is “looking re-evaluating all areas of the club” (except he can’t touch Kevin Lowe). So when are the Habs going to start to “clean house”…ever?

  194. JD_ says:

    “He that is without sin among you, let him cast the first puck.” – John 8:7, sort of.

    Yeah, Price’s behaviour was reproachable. Having said that, lest we find ourselves portraying Habs of yore as the second coming of Christ, even the greats had their moments. And some of those moments were beyond the pale.

    Price’ll get older. And wiser. It happens to almost all of us, with perhaps the exception of former Philadelphia Flyer mouth-breather Bobby Clobber. He just gets older.

    Washington’s carrying the series by winning one period per game. In true MMA style, the moment the Habs drop their guard, the lethal Caps’ firepower seizes the opportunity and delivers a game-ending roundhouse. The Caps don’t need to play the entire game cause they score in bunches. It could be a problem down the road for them, but against a team that struggles to finish, it’s more than enough.

    Expecting the Habs to play 60 minutes of Tupperware(TM) hockey in each of the next three games is probably asking too much. Stranger things have happened – and F knows Washington has a historical knack for blowing 3-1 playoff series leads – but not much stranger.

    Am I really the only one who thought the flag kid had it coming? He was obviously waving the Habs flag in a manner designed to provoke Ovie and got it thrown back in his face, literally. It’s a hockey rink, man, keep your head up; the guy takes no prisoners. The kid’s probably totally embellished the story at school today: “So, right after I told Ovechkin to go F himself, he bolts towards me…”

  195. ooder says:

    i don’t think Price was immature.. that is just stupid to say.. he was frustrated obviously.

    he reacted like any normal player did.

    btw Koivu was awesome.. it’s a shame they never got him anyone good to paly with

    ——————

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

  196. Bob Barker says:

    I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt. At least they’re willing to spend to the cap unlike some teams. 

     

  197. AH says:

    JD, your last line…LOL!!! freaking hilarious!, I needed that today after last night.

  198. Bob Barker says:

    It’s definitely the best way to succeed in the cap-era. 

    Pre-cap = Buy your team like the Red Wings used to do (not like the Rangers). 

    All the teams with the best chance to win were terrible a couple of years ago. 

    Washington, Pittsburgh, Chicago, LA, etc. 

  199. B says:

    I wonder if injuries have anything to do with the less than stellar play of some Habs? While it could be they are just not playing well, we may find out after the team is eliminated that some of the players being mercilessly dumped on, have actually been bravely playing through injuries and putting it on the line for the team.

  200. punkster says:

    I guess this would appeal to some but damn that is brainless.

  201. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Carter was impressive against us last year.

    But we need at least two — so who with Carter?

  202. Tis Himself says:

    Unfortunately, the only way to be good in the future is to suck it up and suck. In the current era, the Stanley Cup will rotate among those squads that use this process. A team like the Habs that tries to play it straight will always be a bubble, early-PO-exit squad.

  203. Bob Barker says:

    Gainey at his worst was nowhere near as bad as Sather. I’ll take Gomez at 7.35 over Drury at 7 or Redden at 6.5 any day. At least Gomez is a good player. 

  204. avatar_58 says:

    I still think Pouliot is injured, he shoots awkwardly since coming back.

  205. Mr.Hazard says:

    Knowing this team, they’re somehow gonna come out with a kick-ass Game 5 and dominate the Caps with a convincing win, giving their fans a glimmer of hope: “just maybe they have it in them”!? And then spur all kinds of debates and articles and attention… Before losing 4-0 on home ice in Game 6.

    “love cannot drown truth, Nefertiti”

  206. HabFanSince72 says:

    How long are you going to take this?

    You’re the sucker for supporting them. Correct me if I’m wrong but you’re not even from Montreal and you even seem to dislike French people. You hold every member of the organization from 4th liners all the way to the GM  in the utmost contempt.

    You have no reason to keep supporting the Habs.

    No one would hold it against you if you switched teams.

    (And spent your time on their talkboard – it goes without saying).

  207. Bugs says:

    “Habs brass don’t want to win.”

    Bravo, Spat. Yes, that must be it.

    The case-cracker.

    Well done, mate.

    So what you do is: take the 20 ouest to the interchange. You’ll see the 401 sign. That’s left lane. Easy-pleasie.

    And uhhh, well, BUH-bye.

    Superfluously redundant, I remain

    L.Bugs Potter, esq. Assistant-Director of St-Habbie’s Hospital for the Blind, Head Physician of Neuroflannelogy Unit, and Occupational Therapist in Habsbros Emergency Ward: http://habsbros.blogspot.com/

  208. HabFanSince72 says:

    In fairness to the Caps they have had only two top draft picks. Other teams have had many more.

    Their GM and scouting is top notch. Green, Fehr, Semin, Varlamov, were all later picks.

    Now Pittsburgh … – imagine if they had picked Eric Staal instead of Fleury and Backstrom or  Toews instead of Jordon Staal.

  209. punkster says:

    Well played sir. Well played.

  210. Bugs says:

    Why you gotta be like that, Hazzy?

    Superfluously redundant, I remain

    L.Bugs Potter, esq. Assistant-Director of St-Habbie’s Hospital for the Blind, Head Physician of Neuroflannelogy Unit, and Occupational Therapist in Habsbros Emergency Ward: http://habsbros.blogspot.com/

  211. Tis Himself says:

    You have to disabuse yourself of the notion that the Habs are an elite sports franchise. They are merely an entertainment company akin to cirque du soleil.

  212. Tis Himself says:

    They’re done like dinner. The misery will end tomorrow night at about 9:30pm EDT.  Five more games played than the Maple Leafs — an accomplishment we can all be proud of!

  213. ProHabs says:

    As Bob Hartley said on Antichambre tonight. Martin has to show up at the 11:00 practice tomorrow and say “We are down 3-1 but anyone who doesn’t believe that we can win Game 5 in Washington, stay in Montreal and don’t bother showing up for the 3 o’clock flight to Washington.”

    He should also say “By the way Hamrlik and MAB, even if you think we can win Game 5 in Washington, I want you 2 to stay in Montreal anyway. “

     

  214. Exit716 says:

    Does that mean Martin and Pearn will be staying behind in Montreal as well?

  215. HabsfaninMA says:

    “but I thought the childish rage was evidence of an athlete who cared.”

    Boone – Athletes can show they “care” without acting like an immature baby! Please. This isn’t the first time he’s shown this immature stuff. Price, to me, has always been a head case.

  216. habs4cup says:

    what’s the difference between Haqlak and Price? nothing! they both stink!

  217. makka83 says:

    Halak supporters out in force today. It’s quite amusing to read. Those same exact people were saying how Halak is much better than Price and how he will do better in the playoffs… All everyone else who isn’t blind said was that Halak is great but we have to wait until he is tested for more than just 4 games against the Islanders, Carolina etc…

    He won big games down the stretch and showed great skill. But at the end of the day, the wins, when it mattered the most, did not come. Putting Price in? it would have been the same outcome in the playoffs… I think the point is now proven… our goalies are not the problem.

  218. Bob Barker says:

    Completely agree. Hamrlik is the problem. They should expect better decisions from a guy getting paid 5.5 mil.

    Some people just really dislike Price. I found he was very solid and gave the Habs a chance to win. He fought through screens and was strong on goal-mouth scrambles. Those saves on Knuble at the beginning of the third really stand out in my mind. 

    Anyways Halak should probably start on Friday, hopefully he can turn in another Game 1 performance.

     

     

  219. Clay4bc says:

    Well well well…all the Price fanatics can hopefully show Jaro the respect he deserves now, because our boy Price (LOSER OF NINE STRAIGHT PLAYOFF GAMES) didn’t get it done tonight. Problems with the team? Same as last 2 games, so no need to elaborate on that.

    Hey Andrew B – I hate the loss, but the only silver lining to me is that you were wrong.

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  220. HabsFanInVictoria says:

    Don’t argue with an idiot, people watching may not be able to tell the difference… i’ll take your advice.

  221. ManApart says:

    Not a rare occurence on Andrew being wrong. It has happened more times than not, all season.  The guy will defend a ridiculous point to the death and come out looking dumb almost once a week, it seems. He knows hockey, but his emotions and bias skew things much of the time.

  222. joeybarrie says:

    Aside from injuries this seaon this is what we have.

    2 promising goalies. Thats all I will say there. One of them can be our future. Either one really.

    Cammalleri can get 40+ goals. Gionta can get 30+ with an emphasis on the PLUS. Pouliot can get 30+ and still pretty young. Pleks can get 30+.

    Gomez, Markov and Pleks can get 50+ assists. Not a stretch in my mind at all.  This is a pretty solid base for top 2 lines.

    We have one of the best defenders in the league with Markov. This needs to be complimented. We have GREAT support. Gill is a good defender, he has had his issues this season, but in the end he has saved us more times than he has made mistakes. PLUS he really shouldnt have been playing as many minutes as he has been. Gorges is THE UNSUNG HERO. This guy is one of our hero’s. These are the strenghts we have to capitalize on. O’Byrne has good size and is a pretty good defender, he is young and makes mistakes, but in my mind he is coming along nicely. We have PK Subban, this kid will be great. But lets make no mistakes about it he will mess up in the big league from time to time, he will not come out and win us the Cup.

    We have players such as Moore, Moen, Pyatt, and Metro. These guys are good 3rd and 4th line players. If these 4 guys are your teams weakest on offense your doing pretty good. Which bring us to our holes.

    Hamr. Dont get me wrong, I love Hamr, but lately he has been a liability. He saved us during injury, and he has been a star for us this season, just not lately. HOWEVER, at 5.5 million we need to trade him. There are teams out there who need him. We need to find one to take him.

    Lapierre, except for some brief good play and a few breakaways, he has been useless for us. He leads our team in plus/minus (except for Mara, but hes gone). I hope we replace him.

    AK and SK. Say what you want about their play. Say what you want about their talent. There is no doubt its there. HOWEVER the attitude sucks. I would not be too sad if they were gone. They have both averaged about 15 minutes of ice time per game, and at 3.25 less than half a point a game is NOT GOOD. Dominic Moore has the same average. SK, I know he is always in the dog house, he is always being held down by JM. Well he has had more ice time than Pouliot and alot less production. Simply put, he needs to produce more than 18 points in 47 games if he is to be considered for a top line.

    In the end we need only a few things to bring this team to the next level. Which isnt far. A top 10 team in the league which competes EVERY night. I believe we could have accomplished that this season without our injuries. But it wasnt to be.

    We need 2 decent forwards. 1 with some good production and size 40+ pts, and 1 grinder with size and can pot 20+ points. Matt Cooke from Pitts is a UFA in July. He might only cost 1.5-1.75 million. Jason Williams from Detroit is a UFA, maybe 2-2.5 million (except he lacks the size), Petr Sykora might be a short term solution, and/or TAYLOR PYATT. Then we would have the K-Bros and the P-Bros…

    We need a good D. Volchenkov is a good stay at home d with size. He is tough and fearless.

    So all the doomsdayers who think BG and staff have screwed this team up, are pretty stupid. We are finally competing again against the TOP teams, and it comes in a NEW year full of injuries.

    Lets take it to game 6…..

  223. Bob Barker says:

    The goalie debate is tiresome but I think it would be a mistake to lose either goalie. Both can likely be signed for less than 3 mil each. Neither should be starting 70+ games yet. Neither has even close to peaked in terms of ability and consistency.

    If Luongo is making 6+ million playing like garbage, Vancouver doesn’t really have any other option because I wouldn’t even want Raycroft on my beer league team. Brodeur is also having a terrible series. Having two solid options in goal is always an asset. 

    The teams defense is what really needs to improve. PK Subban looks to be developing into a star defenseman. His skating ability and offense will likely have a huge impact on the Habs. If he has half the impact Doughty has in LA I’d be happy. He’ll probably be able to do more than that though. 

  224. notbigbird says:

    I wonder if Hammer is in great condition? I know he’s no longer young, but isn’t Spacek older and he isn’t fading so badly. It’s too bad we’re stuck with two expensive, aging defencement though. Well. if we can’t get rid of him any other way, Hammer will be gone after next year, and it’s not like we’re going to the finals for a while, if ever, anyway.

  225. likehoy says:

    hamrlik has been the worst dman this series, slow and weak despite his size.

    it’s time for hamrlik to go one way or another. i understand he has  NTC, but not a NMC, so let’s put him down in the minors or even buy him out, we only have to pay 1.8 for the next 2 years (much better than the 5.5 we currently owe him next year)

    honestly if i were roman, i’d retire! he can’t hack it as a top 4, and he should be humble enough to realize he doesn’t deserve 5.5 as a 6th dman, which we have all too many of.

    - Habs Romance (Lady Gaga remix) http://montreal.virginradio.ca/blogs/39/posts/464

  226. Y says:

    If they can somehow make Hamrliks insane contract vanish from the books and not bring back some of the other deadwood, I would love to have both goalies back as well as have Pleks signed to a nice long-term deal.

  227. HabsFanInVictoria says:

    BOONE:  In reference to Hamrlik 

    One more season of the Hammer at $5.5 million. Thanks, Bob.”

    You’re the first person to praise Hamrilik when he’s playing well… now when he’s had a couple of bad shifts you’re going to blame Bob? 

    He’s one of the reasons we’re in the playoffs.  When Markov went down, you had a lot of good things to say about the guy… 

    Boone… you may be a well respected journalist, but you flip flop with your opinions like a fish out of water.

  228. phillyhab says:

    Hamrlik is garbage and has been consistently horrible for 2 seasons, THEN let the  Caps back into two playoff games were we controlled the momentum.  Stop apologising for bad players and coaches.

  229. SeriousFan09 says:

    Hamrlik does well to start the year every year, but at this time of year? He’s useless, season wears him down to about a 1/3 of what he is to start the season. It’s not bad shifts, it is full games where he’s bad, easily the worst on the ice. Respect for what he did earlier, but the NHL is an 82 or more game schedule depending upon your post-season appearances. Hamrlik doesn’t have what it takes to get through the year and Bob signed him a bit too long unfortunately.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  230. shootdapuck says:

    How about “manipulated”?

     

    “The three stars as selected by Red Fisher of the Montreal Star:
    1st star: Henri Richard
    2nd Star: Doug Harvey
    3rd Star: Jacques Plante

    Final score Detroit Red Wings 5 Montreal Canadiens 3″

  231. TripleX says:

    Contrived = artificial,fake, false, unnatural, forced, phony

    Hardly words of praise in my humble opinion.

  232. subdoxastic says:

    It’s true that the word is often used to connote negative qualities, but its denotive meaning is simply:

    Ingeniously or artfully devised or planned.

     

    Which, I (being a fan of SK) think is pretty apt for the best set-up man prospect I’ve seen come up through the organization.

     

  233. Bob Barker says:

    I’d say we should keep Moore for his faceoff and skating ability. He’s an effective forechecker. Pyatt is still young and is a pretty effective penalty killer but he’s basically SK74 without the offensive upside.

    O’Byrne played a solid physical game. He should get more ice time on Friday. 

    Metro and Moen are not getting any younger and could probably be replaced with bigger bodies. 

    Our top-6, although small dominated the Caps bigger forwards for most of the game. Unfortunately, Hamrlik, in his senility, decides it’s a good idea to take a useless risk with 10 seconds left in a period while protecting a lead. That play along with allowing Ovechkin to get pick corners from the slot is what cost them the game. 

  234. joeybarrie says:

    I will make my decisions about what i would like to see next season based on the whole season play, and not just 4 games against a Juggernaut team…

    Also of Note, two things… If you want guys who hit, then LAPS is number 1 on our team. Should we be keeping him and giving him a raise next season????

    Two Moen is the next biggest hitter on the team, and Pyatt is up there too. Moore has proven himself to be a great addition this season so far, and Metro?????  I mean is there a better 1 million dollar veteran in the league???

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

  235. J. Ambrose says:

    Unlike Carey who has a hissy fit when scored on.

  236. joeybarrie says:

    If Halak is playing his best to only be the backup goalie then HOPEFULLY any goalie in the league with his talent would also ask to be played or traded. He would be wasting his time. He didn’t whine or take a fit. Thats just STUPID to say. Halak has proved himself this season. Nothing can be said about that.

    It will be Price who stays. Not only does he has the bigger upside, but Halak has alot of value right now. Pleasing them is not what matters, getting the players we are missing matters.

    Why does it ALWAYS have to be one or the other?????  I mean no one comes in here and slams Cammalleri if Gionta Scores…… No one slams Moen when laps hits everyone……  It makes no sense how ridiculous we are about our two goalies……

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

  237. likehoy says:

    i hate to say it but if we had paul mara in this playoff series, he would make a huge difference. Mara is a tough guy and a solid puck mover on the point.

    he would have cleared the front of the net on the occasiosn that we’ve so often failed, and he would have made the 2nd pp unit more potent if he played the right point and spatch the left one, leaving roman hamrlik on the bench.

    he was a team worst -16, but at that time we didn’t know who to pair him with (hal gill + mara was not the answer) and our team just sucked during that stretch.

    - Habs Romance (Lady Gaga remix) http://montreal.virginradio.ca/blogs/39/posts/464

  238. joeybarrie says:

    I dont know about you, but I PREFER a goalie who cares about being scored on. Not simply taking it and saying whatever.  Theodore or Patrick Roy…….

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

  239. Shublips says:

    We have to remember that the Habs barely qualified for the playoffs and are playing against the team with the best regular season record.

    Like all season long, the Habs have simply failed to capitalize on their chances throughout this series and it is coming back to haunt them.

    Re: the Caps, I personally don’t see how they can win the cup.  The Habs are exposing them as a defensively weak team, with sick offense.  Ok, so what happens when they play against a REAL team like, say, the Pens, or The Canucks, or Detroit.  I don’t see them winning.

    http://www.habsaddict.com/2010/04/canadiens-capitals-habs-blow-lead-again.html

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

  240. TripleX says:

    “Sergei Kostitsyn contrived to be plus-2 in eight minutes of fairly solid
    play.”

    So petty Mr. Boone.  The kid played great with energy in his limited minutes of ice time.  What was contrived about his effort???

  241. SeriousFan09 says:

    Contrived means he planned or plotted to do what he did, I’d say Boone was quite accurate. Sergei went out there with the intention of performing to the best of his ability and showing he’s five times the NHL player Darche is and succeeded.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  242. topher5468 says:

    His name isn’t Sergei Pouliot. 

    “It’s not an obsession, It’s a way of life..”

  243. sam says:

    One more season of the Hammer at $5.5 million. Thanks, Bob.

    nice of you to mention his salary after a couple of bad games and not through the stretch Hamrlik solidly replaced Markov earlier this season, uh?

    remember when people whined about Gomez’ salary during his goal/Gionta-less stretch? haven’t heard it mentioned in a while now. apples and apples, my friend. if you’re only going to bring up a player’s contract when he’s down, then you must also remind us Bob signed that same player when he’s the bright spot on the team.

    remember how people piled up on Gill? yeah, Bob signed him and look who’s being cheered at the Bell.

    bi-polar fans.

  244. PattyBoy31 says:

    even at his best was hamrlik worth 5.5? I think it was a panic move to bring in a steady d-man and overpaying was the only way to do it at the time.

  245. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Good point, Sam. And I’m guilty. Last year I was maddened by Pleks’ inconsistency and lack of physical presence and I would have traded him for Doug Wickenheiser. So wrong! And I was dumping on Gill in the regular season — he seemed like Komi reincarnated: all size and no aggro. But what a fantastic job he did on Ovie. That was special. I hope he doesn’t beat himself up over that goal last night. 

    After a complete overhaul like last summer’s, it was good we made the playoffs — and we’re not done yet. They might just play loose Friday with nothing to lose, already written-off. But whatever happens, we’re now in a position to make adjustments rather than transformations. If we can (and I think scoring threats are what we need) we will surely go deeper next year.

    Cheers

  246. Bob Barker says:

    Hammer played admirably when Markov went down but his play as of late has been terrible. As a highly paid veteran d-man he’s expected to step up in the playoffs. People rip on Gomez because of his salary but at least he makes the team better. The last few games, Hamrlik has not made the team better and has actually hurt them on several occasions. 

  247. Chris says:

    “bi-polar fans.”

    I resent that! I’ve been very consistent in my criticisms of Gomez! :)

  248. Ian Cobb says:

    About last night!

    We played a hell of a game folks. Well worth the Price of admission for sure.

    But in the end the big ugly “O” guy was just to good, along with his friends.

    Our defence will be addressed in the off season.

  249. mbplekfan says:

    OB was solid tonight, Sergei played fantstic too.

    MAB was awful, Hamrlik was too.

    Pouliot is still our most promising forward.

    The PK Subban era starts next season.

  250. Ian Cobb says:

    I doubt very much if you will see Hammer back next year, and MAB has been gone a long time now!! He just does not know it yet.

  251. topher5468 says:

    What!!! Please explain how pouliot is our most promising forward. What Am I missing about this guy. Someone please tell me

    “It’s not an obsession, It’s a way of life..”

  252. topher5468 says:

    C’MON THERE MR BOONE, What did ” Your Man Benny” do tonight , Please tell me, I really want to know. You were quick to point out Ovechkin loafing on Plecks winner, What about ” YOUR MAN BENNY” on OV’s 2nd tonight. Please enlighten Me as to your expertise

    “It’s not an obsession, It’s a way of life..”

  253. HugeHabFan says:

    Whenever the defence should pinch in, they dont, when they shouldnt pinch in, they do, and get caught every time. Hamrlik, Georges, and OByrne do not have any offensive clue out there.

  254. SeriousFan09 says:

    OB should be a regular D without question. Gorges, Gill have been proving their value all series long. Markov had his best game of the playoffs offensively speaking, but Spacek was sorely missed and Hamrlik played like he’s a hundred years old, MAB was well, easily forgotten if he wasn’t on for so many goals.

    Next year, I hope Brendon Nash does well on the farm because I like the idea of a 6’3″ BC boy joining the D-corps mining BC for defensive talent is working out thus far.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  255. HAB-PROFESSOR says:

    the critical Washington 3rd and 4th goals…were both BERGERONS fault… he was lazy and slow during the powerplay killing off precious time in our end and half heartedly moving the puck forward without precision… that led to the disrupted flow and turnover…and he failed to move the puck behind the net for the 4th…

    really, where the heck has OBYRNE been this series, a big blunder by JM…. and another fact, PRICE is not elite, nor touching on elite, nor have moments of eliteness…if he was then OVI doesn’t score twice… not that HALAK is better, just a tad more consistent. (you can go with either goalie Friday)

    again another game where the HABS should have won (aside from the breakdown shorthanded killer)…how is it possible we can say this now for all 4 games, but still be on the verge of being sweeped…

    something wrong with this picture.

    oh…and one more comment…GREAT DOMINIC MOORE!, this guy was Torontos best player a few years ago and I was thrilled when we picked him up, he is excellent defensively, very FAST, good headsup stickhandler, and you all saw what he did tonight, END TO END GOAL….nobody else did that…not even OVI.

    1:The N.A.G. (North American Grit) Youth Movement will bring us respect. 2:The NHL-Ref-Syndicate will do everything in its power to never allow the HABS to win another Stanley Cup. 3:Take it easy on the boys, they are going 110%

  256. Bob Barker says:

    They are both RFAs. Price is not eligible for arbitration. Neither one of them can demand top-dollar and then walk if they don’t get it. If they held out, they’d lose an entire year of salary. I doubt their agents would advise them to do that. 

  257. Ian Cobb says:

    From Hamilton to the Habs, we have improved a great deal. Next year we will have developed about 3 more young kids that will take their place on our roster.

    If there is any players available to improve our club with, we have a couple of brothers that are good for a two for one trade. And I would say there are 3 or 4 more that won’t be back as we find better players to trade two for one.

  258. SeriousFan09 says:

    Ian, given the brother’s issues, do you honestly believe we wouldn’t get hosed on a Kostitsyn’s deal? Enigma + Younger brother with coach conflict issues does not = Top 6 forward unless you find a drunk GM or one looking to unload his problem player on us, either enigmatic or a playoff choker.

    Guy Boucher has to be given a chance to work with the Kostitsyns before a trade is considered. If Sergei became a two-way forward because of Boucher despite the problems, I’d really like to see what he could do with AK and further work with Sergei.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  259. sam says:

    i agree, Dunboyne Mike. (unless a miracle happens with the next 3 games) losing to the Caps shouldn’t be a shame. the Habs fought long and hard. people in this city expect a Stanely Cup every year. it is insane. especially in a 30-team league, and especially after the overhaul we did last summer. i consider it a success that we made the playoffs with an entirely new team and the amount of long-term injuries sustained by almost every single major player on our roster this season.

    i tip my hat to the Habs for competing against the powerhouse that are the Capitals.

    the next couple of seasons should give us some pretty exciting hockey.

  260. Propwash says:

    The one and only thing that earks me about this team is we cant frigging bury our chances, and the fact that we cant find the puck when an odd bounce happens to be between the legs.

     

    Goalies in Montreal have two roles, netminder and scapegoat. 


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