About last night …

Price

Let’s go with the Wives Theory.

It came up on Ron Fournier’s phone-in show on 98.5 FM. In trying to explain why it often happens that teams come out flat in their first home game after a road trip, Fournier laid the blame squarely on spouses and household responsibilities.

“They come back from the road and they have all this stuff to do,” the radio entertainer said. “Fix the garage door. Go shopping at Costco. Check the kids’ math homework.”

The players get stressed.

And the next thing you know, they’re on Bell Centre ice, skating around aimlessly and going more than seven minutes into the game before managing a single shot on the goaltender who used to be a Canadiens’ farmhand in Hamilton.

So fine, 20 minutes to get Costco and math out of their systems. Then down to business against the team that sits 30th in the NHL, right?

Wrong.

The Canadiens went more than eight minutes into the second period before getting a shot.

They salvaged a point. And maybe the point Brian Gionta secured with his late third-period goal will be important in April.

But on nights like this, the Canadiens look like a team for whom hard-won points won’t prevent April from being an early golf month.

Colleague Eric Engels asked Carey Price a terrific question after the game. Price’s stall in the dressing room is just across a whiteboard showing the current standings in the Eastern Conference, and Engels asked the goaltender what it’s like to look at where the Canadiens are sitting.

As always, Price was honest.

“It’s eating me alive,” he said, adding “I don’t like to lose.”

A goaltender bears some responsibility for a Shootout loss. But this one wasn’t on Price.

The Canadiens managed a measly 20 shots on Curtis Sanford. That matches the season-low they had in Anaheim, where the Canadiens suffered a loss to another team that’s going nowhere.

Do they play to the level of competition?

Brian Wilde of CTV suggested that during Jacques Martin’s press conference. The Canadiens play well against the Bostons and Pittsburghs of the league, then stumble against the teams like Columbus and Anaheim.

In his typical fashion, Martin offered up sme bromide about there being no gimmes on the schedule, every team is competitive, yada-yada.

Martin did allow that the Canadiens seem to play play a more simple, direct game on the road. Aagainst Columbus, the coach said, they were guilty of individual plays, sloppy turnovers that turned into odd-man rushes, poor support of the puck carrier.

“Fancy” hockey, Martin said, applying one of his most pejorative adjectives. General unwillingness to go to the net and pay the price, which Brian Gionta did to score the tying goal.

P.K. Subban committed three of the Canadiens’ 11 giveaways. And each one turned into a dangerous Columbus scoring chance – including a 3-on-1 in the dying seconds of the game, a situation rescued by Josh Gorges.

Gorges bailed out his defence partner on several occasions, but it’s not fair to come down too hard on P.K.

Yes, the kid tries to do too much. But in the ongoing absence of Andrei Markov, Subban is the back-end’s only remotely dangerous puck-mover. P.K. played 32:17  against Columbus, and I think some of his late-game problems were attributable to fatigue.

Subban and Gorges (27:58) had to play ridiculous minutes because Martin benched Yannick Weber for the third period, reducing the D corps to five. If there were positives to take from the game, they were the continuing steady play of Raphael Diaz, who blocked a team-high four shots, and the physical impact of Alexei Emelin, whose nine hits – many of them crushers – topped both teams.

Chris Campoli and Jaro Spacek are getting closer to returning. At this point, Weber is toast, but beyond that Martin has some difficult choices to make.

The picture is clearer up front.  The forwards were not good against Columbus – losing puck battles, making jittery, low-percentage passes – but they’ll come around … possibly as soon as Thursday night, when they will have to rise to the challenge of the Sedin twins and Ryan Kesler.

Trailing for most of the game, Martin shortened his bench to three lines. That meant only less than five minutes of ice time for Louis Leblanc in his Bell Centre debut. But let history record the kid had a shot, a hit, a takeaway … and focus enhanced by the 20-year-old’s marital status.

•  •  •

The Canadiens were 24-11-6 on home ice last season.

They are currently 4-5-5.

It doesn’t make sense … and the illogic of it all does not sit well with the 21,273 who pay top dollar to watch the team struggle at the Bell Centre.

Despite the Stanley Cup banners and the retired jerseys and the noise from all those sellout crowds, the Bell Centre is not a building where visiting teams feel intimidated.

•  •  •

Someone on the other thread pointed out a grim stat:

The Canadiens have played 28 games this season.

They have EIGHT wins in regulation.

Over their last 10, TWO regulations wins.

Picked out your spot for the parade?

125 Comments

  1. Nina76 says:

    They don’t want to play hockey as far as I can see they just want the money not all but most, no excuse for the crap we are seeing

  2. Rickly33 says:

    JM do not have a clue about young talent, don’t know how to handle, and sure as hell don’t know how to utilize them. Every time he gets something to work, he changes it the next game. Just brutal, why does management not see this, he did the same in ottawa, he gave a glimmer oh hope but it’s time to go.

    • jjpod says:

      I`d love to ask Mr Molson this:
      ( with credible back up from the Gazette team)
      I would even want to make a graph to prove my point.

      in the last 5 years ( maybe 8?) how few times a writer used the word dynasty in describing our team. ( not describing the 70`s)

      WE need that word in our vocab Mr Molson, not EX, not M, not a reminder to buy authentic jerseys, not new commercial break games that no one likes, not a heartbeating logo, we want to look at stats, replays, standings and know we are the best..

      as a fan of the MONTREAL CANADIENS i dont want to hear anymore of this Gary bettman (JM supporting) BS that any given team can win… OUR GOAL is that we should be building a team where its our advantage each night and the challenge is always defending it. (detriot?) not scraping by…

      in every sports leauge there is a team that ignores the common law of who can win and loose and makes it there goal to be forever the winning team. Why are we letting this go?

  3. DickandDanny says:

    No firing today. No trades. I must not have slept. Back to bed I go. Wake me when something happens.

    “A Cannonading Blast from the Wing, By Lafleur”

  4. dano58 says:

    Price played his usual great self. Subban got booed but was over used due to Webber and Gill being worse than usual. Offense was offensive. Probably as bad a game as I have seen in long time. What was J/M doing to lite a fire under these guys? NOTHING. Cammillari is about to be the new Gomez whipping boy. Lazy and ineffective on P/K. He may not want to be out there but at least help in our zone instead of cheating and hoping for a breakaway all the time. In my day it was called SUCKY and with him on when we are in our zone we are always short handed and on the P/K even more so. Also why are all these guys allowed to make lazy line changes? Don’t the too many men penalties(I believe we lead the NHL in this stat) wake anyone up? Price needs to lite a fire under these guys and tell them he is tired of being laid out on a cross in the shootout when they can’t do their job in front of him. He keeps them in games and they only go for the single point not the win. Some of these over paid clowns need a seat on the bench or as a healthy scratch upstairs when they don’t put forth the effort. They sure played hard to get the fat long contracts so how about earning them for a change. Do they have no pride anymore? Suck it up and play harder. It’s more than a job it a religion for us that pay the bills by buying tickets….. Play hockey like you can regardless of who is coaching and put on your big boy pants gentlemen.

    • lady byngo says:

      Agreed. Last night was the last straw !! Only time I want to see a dump-in is for a line change ! Please allow the players more freedom to handle the puck into the offensive zone !! If the only time we can threaten to score is on a rebound scramble we are no threat at all. The two occasions ( during games ) I’m out of my chair: 1. Cole on a rush – how refreshing.
      2. Penalty kill – they have been great.
      This last game was shameful – LL might be their most creative and competent puckhandler and was on the bench ???? WTF…

  5. Chris F says:

    Most of the blame for playing to the level of your competition has to be put on the players, and leadership of those players.
    Going into a home game, after a tough trip, with a team at .500, somebody has to step up and help everyone focus at the task of burying one of the worst teams in the league.
    Granted Columbus were really bad earlier due to injuries, but there just seems to be not enough true game changers, or at least momentum changers on this team.
    Just too plain on too many nights.
    Who said 8 wins in regulation?? That is just pathetic.
    Maybe we all have rose colored glasses.
    The best I felt watching the game, the two times I felt like coming out of my seat (couch) were AK’s goal (given it was a skilled player driving to the net with finish!! Imagine!!) and the other was Emelin flattening (I can’t remember who) on Price’s left side, it brought people out of their seats.
    I love Emelin. He’s the only guy right now who can hit consistently and give the team some momentum, not to mention elicit some excitement in the crowd.
    And once again, AK has to be signed. If we lose this guy, one of our draft picks, it will be a sad sad day. I’ve already lost all confidence in PG, and Martin knows hockey, but it is time for a change. 8 regulation wins.
    We have no pop, we need a player who can light a fire under the team. Too many Mr. Nice Guys. Mr. Nice Guy is not beating the Bruins in the playoffs, and right now, I never thought I’d see the day, I would not feel confident playing the Leafs, and that’s embarrassing.

    • zorro says:

      Chris F, you are bang on buddy, What’s this GM doing to our team? It seems like time is running out, and their playing worse everyday. Fans pay big money to see that crap.

  6. ont fan says:

    You are right fuz.One hand tied behind our back with the culture. The french speaking coach and Gm will always hurt us. A french superstar who won’t come home. A fan base that obsesses over the mess we have without any real altenatives except the old ways. There is no way out unless you give the open market a chance.

  7. mfDx says:

    Q: Did the Montreal Canadiens play the worst team in the league last night, or did the Columbus Blue Jackets play the worst team in the league last night?

    Those two flag kids have got to go

  8. Timo says:

    “asked a terrific question”… what a load of BS. The so called feared Mtl media is nothing but a bunch of cream puffs (someone used that yesterday, I like the name) when it comes to interviewing players after a brutal loss. Nobody had balls, not even Jessica, to ask Cammillari or Gionta or Martin to explain why the team fails to show up for games. No one dares to ask the highest players on this team to justify making ridiculous sums of money with production equivalent of 4th line players. All these journalists and reporters and bloggers are only brave to shoot their mouths off (just like the rest of us, admittedly) while sitting in their offices or basements.

  9. FuzE_gus says:

    Some thoughts…Not to sound like I’m Leaf bashing (I have no steady ground to do that from right now anyways)…but I’ve always maintained the Leafs’ lack of success was the result of a flawed culture within the organisation from top down. I’m drawn to understand the culture of any business, team, charity, whatever. I’ve always been proud to support the Habs because they carried themselves with grace and professionalism that was second to none. The farther and farther we get from those glory years I’m realising my impression of the Habs organisation is coloured by bleu, blanc et rouge glasses. The handling of the Markov PR, the undying support of another boring, French-Speaking coach (not a jab to the french, but a reference to every coach having to be french), seeing former Habs players flourish in other cities and the list goes on. The Montreal Canadiens are a thriving business based on past glory and the fact fans of the team can’t or won’t let go. The reality is the team has become ordinary with brief peaks of moderate success. Sound familiar? We are becoming the Toronto Maple Leafs. I hate to say it but it is true. The culture in the Habs organisation is flawed. It is not working. And until it changes I fear we are facing many more years of this painful mediocrity.

    With Regards from FuzE_gus

    • bellcentre hotdog says:

      I think that about sums it up.

    • MasterHab says:

      As soon as Habs management came to the realization that they could still make money without actually winning anything, the die was cast. Historically, the Habs have always been as cheap and parsimonious as the Leafs ever were, but they used to work under an assumed imperative that the Leafs never had. Unlike the Leafs, the Habs, it was believed, had to actually win games to keep the turnstiles turning. The Habs were winners because they needed to be. Winning was a condition of fan loyalty. That was never the case in Toronto and because of that, the Leafs felt no pressure to do anything real in order to win.

      But under Ron Corey and later Pierre Boivin, the Habs managed to systematically lower fan expectations. It took the better part of two decades and a long Cup drought to do it, but nowadays the only fans who really get bent out of shape over the fact that the Habs don’t win Cups anymore are the ones (like myself) who are old enough to remember a time when this team was the gold standard. There is an entire generation of fans now who have never seen this team win a Cup. And now, the stated “goal” of the team, as articulated by management, is to compete not for a Cup, but merely for a playoff spot.

      Corey and Boivin won the war. We now have sell-out crowds paying top-dollar prices to watch crap. The fans whine and complain but they don’t stop coming to the rink. They don’t stop buying jerseys. They have been converted into the same breed of sheep you see at the ACC in Toronto every year. They’re just happy to show up and see 20 guys wearing the jersey. They no longer require the team to be any good so they aren’t.

      After all, building a winner is hard and can be expensive. Being mediocre is cheap and easy. Given a choice most corporations will take the path of least resistance and do what’s easy and cost-effective. The only way to get them to try harder to win is to hit them in the pocketbook. Make winning Cups a condition of your loyalty (i.e. refuse to spend money on anything less than an elite team)

      The team we have now does not deserve to have a sell-out crowd show up to watch it tomorrow night, even if they’re an angry sell-out crowd. Management doesn’t care if you’re happy so long as you’re spending money. So the way to affect change is to stop feeding the beast. Stop buying tickets. Cancel your subscription to RDS. Stop turning every Christmas into an opportunity to conduct a spending orgy at the Habs gift shop.

      Molson won’t do a damn thing unless or until he starts losing money.

      • Ronin says:

        Wow…you just encapsulated my feelings exactly.

        Except I have felt this way for about 12yrs. I lost interest in the habs around that time due to continued poor results and only flickers of potential. My son is a huge hockey nut though and in the last 2-3 years has brought me back to pay more attention to the game….and the realization that we are in the same spot we were in 12yrs ago. No progress of becoming like a Detroit Red Wings organization, just one bent on performing just enough to keep people coming and hoping. Reminds me of baseball with the pre-packaged answers and lack of accountability….

        awesome post

      • podbay says:

        Completely agree with what you wrote. It only now occurs to me that any Hab fan under 25 has no real memory of any Cup victories. How sad. And with expectations set so low, Molson and Gauthier have us by the balls. If Molson really did express a show of faith in Gauthier and Martin this week, and he is to be believed, then we cannot rightfully expect anything good to happen here for a few more years.

        At first it appeared that the only bad deal made was for Gomez. Now we’re seeing Cammalleri playing poorly, Gionta playing average at best, and we have to question those signings as well. What a pity. At least Cole is giving it his best every night.

        This is a long dark time for Habs fans.

    • habstrinifan says:

      Great post!

  10. ont fan says:

    And the coach and Gm should be? Poor Gomez..hurt and still gets killed here. LOL

  11. NCRhabsfan says:

    I don’t get the LL thing.He doesn’t look out of place in the NHL, but he also doesn’t look like a 4th liner. If you need a 4th line-type player, bring a 4th line type player up (and that not Palushajh either). It made sense to bring LL up when Max-Pac was out and you could use him in a top-9 role, it doesn’t make sense to use him like they used him last night. He will benefit more from playing 15 minutes a night with the most talented bunch you have in the AHL, than he will from playing 4 minutes with the hands of stone crew in the NHL.

    By the way, on a night when the Habs were generating no offence, what does it say that they never really let a talented youngster like LL take a couple turns on one of the better lines to try and create something? Perhaps JM doesn’t want him in Montreal and this is his subtle way of letting PG know that.

    • The Cat says:

      Agreed with LL on the 4th line, also it doesnt make sense to dress Weber if youre not gonna use him on the PP.

      [Disclaimer]: I’m a hockey fan. I care about the habs, but probably not as much as you.

  12. Brinkley says:

    I don’t understand why people are (apparently) surprised at the current state of the Habs.

    For the last few years they have rode a strong goaltender and a good PP to whatever (limited) success they have had.

    In teams of scoring the Habs have been amongst the worst teams in the NHL scoring 5-on-5.

    The PP has gone cold and they aren’t winning….what a shock!

    The nucleus of the current roster has been built through free agency, because management – with few exceptions – has drafted poorly and not developed their prospects well – giving up on some of them too soon and have traded away prospects and draft choices for patch jobs they have decided not to keep.

    As long as Geoff Molson is happy with a GM who’s resume is filled with more experience at failure than winning – we can continue to expect more of the same!

    • NCRhabsfan says:

      Right on! I know everyone is excited about the bunch we have in the pipeline now (none of whom will likely be ready until the season after next at the earliest), but how have they managed to be so unsuccessful drafting over the past 10+ years. I know there haven’t been too many top of the draft type picks, but for every one of those that pans out there seems to be some guy drafted 100 and somethingth (not sure that’s a word but you get my drift) that turns out to be a star.One would think that the law of averages is that you would have to stumble on one of those through sheer luck from time to time. The Habs certainly haven’t struck gold like that for a forward in forever. Is it possible it is not the raw material (the prospects drafted) that is the problem, but rather the developmental process they’re using to develop the final product?

      • Ronin says:

        I think I read it here once, but the montreal canadiens are a flagship organization, and capital rich (in terms of money). We should have the deepest scouting, the best trainers, the most sophisticated prospect criteria of any organization in the league….2nd to none….not I said should.

        I’M usually not negative, but I try to be objective and they are not in a good place right now as an organization.

      • 86ontheice says:

        Habs have one of the best drafting records in the last ten years. They just don’t stick with the Habs.

  13. nek25plus says:

    Guy,Guy,Guy,Guy,Guy,Guy,Guy….

    You get my point, bring Carbonneau back, we’re paying him still anyway.

  14. Ian Cobb says:

    By the time I finished this I had to put it on the next page.

    Hab for life, IAN

  15. nick says:

    You know…
    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a MTL team look so bummed out and out of it. Price has been pretty much the only constant on this team and that is the only reason they still have their head above water. I have no answers for this lack of motivation – enthusiasm…

    • nunacanadien says:

      So much for the argument that Scott Gomez hurt or unhurt is a voice in the room. I thought that is what we pay the coach for. What excuse will Geoff Molson make now for Scott Gomez? You want to know why the habs lost and came out flat last night? The reprocussions of being reminded that Scott Gomez is not going away anytime soon, as constant as the potholes….

  16. montreal ace says:

    I thought Max was invisible last night for the most part, and I think Shanahans suspension and comparing his hit to Cookes affected him. I know its a game but the hit he took from Chara was pretty frightening, and probably changed his views on life and the game he plays. I think the Habs brass should have made a statement, about Shanahan and how wrong he was in his discussions with Max, and in his treatment of a fine young man.

    • nunacanadien says:

      Leave the Habs to get their players massacred in the media, look at how JM also crapped over Subban’s penalties last year against the Bruins as a good example. The habs are listless, rudderless organization with another Harold Ballard type owner in the making…..people remember Harold Ballard and his horrible ownership and management of the Laffs? Who would have thought the glorius Habs in their owner Geoff Molson and his support of Scott Gomez, would out do Harold Ballard? In a short one sentence remark about supporting Scott Gomez has cost the habs a good start, and have come back to haunt the habs after they forgot that they had Gomez……aw Scott Gomez I am sure MaxPac thought, as I struggled for my life after my hard work, to watch Gomez skate around as if life was free and no pain….that Scott Gomez. The one that doesn’t pass the puck to another hab.

  17. cashbagg says:

    The Habs:

    Where stars come to die:

    (see Gomez, Gionta, Cammalari, Tanguay)

    I’m sure there’s more I haven’t thought of.

    Besides Kovalev, who has excelled offensively on this team in the last 15 years? And even he had an off season or 2.

    Unreal. Seems every other team in this league has a star forward, capable of scoring 90+ points. Expectations for this team are so low, that Montrealers are happy when someone on this team breaks 60.

    • bellcentre hotdog says:

      I keep bringing this stat up because it’s simply unbelievable:

      The Habs’ last 40 goal scorer was in 1994! (Vinny Damphousse) We are approaching 2 decades without 1 guy being able to score 40 goals.

      • cashbagg says:

        Haven’t had a guy break 100 pts since Naslund in 1986….

        25 years.

        Pathetic.

        • Rob D says:

          A couple of years ago Lafleur commented that the Canadiens were a team without a legit 1st line. Nothing has changed. They currently don’t have a legit No. 1 D-man either (Markov, when healthy, fulfills that role and was/is light years ahead of whoever you want to argue is our No. 2)

          Those stats concerning our last 40 goal scorer and 100 point getter are sobering. I don’t expect either of those droughts to end anytime soon. .500 teams don’t get to draft in the top 7 very often.

  18. HardHabits says:

    Molson does not have the courage nor the ability to right this ship.

    What needs to be done:

    Bury Gomez in the minors. Trade Cammy and Gio.

    Do not allow PG to trade any prospects or picks under any circumstances.

    Start the rebuild via the draft.

    In 2 1/2 years we might have a team to start getting excited about.

    As it stands the Habs are joke.

    • smiler2729 says:

      Bury Gomez in the minors lol
      Trade Cammy and Gio LOLOL

      That joke’s not even funny.

      ___________________________________
      Jack Edwards sucks chowdah chunks

      • Hab-Q says:

        Roger that!

        ______________________________________________________
        “I went to a fight the other night and a hockey game broke out”

        ~Rodney Dangerfield

        • nunacanadien says:

          I disagree, Cammy would be a bonus if we managed to sign a Martin St. Louis type player here. You need play makers. I am not so sure about Gionta after his lip injury. But Gio’s a good man. Definitely get rid of Campoli and Gomez and why keep Martin if we are cleaning house, and what about any others? If we could find another Desharnais type player, a real player who wants to play as opposed to veterans like Gomez who don’t care…..

  19. adamkennelly says:

    until someone makes some changes around here – this is what we are in for. this team is bad folks – bad…no character, no push, no leadership…don’t tell me about injuries – they don’t explain the lack of consistency or passion….don’t expect anything to change until the coach is gone, and some personnel changes are made. last night was embarrassing.

  20. Thomas Le Fan says:

    “Fancy hockey”? Phooey!

  21. habfan01 says:

    This team is lacking in character and integrity. Anyone who thinks the return of Markov and others from injury will turn the team around is nuts. It may help a little, but results will stay the same.

  22. montreal ace says:

    Whose in charge of the Jacques Martin fan club on this site, I want to speak to them as they have the wrong idea of what a fan club is about

    • HardHabits says:

      That would be G-Man. He’s the JM Fan Club President.

      • G-Man says:

        At least I’m a fan of the Habs, management and all. Am I happy the team is off to such a crappy start? No. Do I think the team will improve once Spacek, Campoli and Markov get back? Yes.
        Will the young D improve? With time.

        Do all of you expect a D squad with 3 rookies on it to outperform every other team in the league? Do you really think that the forwards, who are helping the young D out as much as they can, will score the 3 or 4 necessary every game?
        JM is doing all he can with lousy cards he’s been dealt this season. And no GM is willing to trade their problems, for a Habs problem. Therefore, do not expect changes in pesonnel or management.

        • montreal ace says:

          I dont have any problems with the overall job Martin has done so far as coach of this team. The Jackets won last night because they iced a better team then Martin, not because he was out coached.

        • NCRhabsfan says:

          Do I expect that “the forwards…will score the 3 or 4 necessary every game”? No! Any game, though, would be nice. Even occasionally would be an improvement over what they’ve been doing lately. Often would begin to get it done.

        • habstrinifan says:

          G-MAN I am afraid you are missing the point. Love the team! But at some point in time you have to analyse …. oh what the heck it’s no use.

          What do I know?

  23. RetroMikey says:

    Win one, lose one, win one, lose one, win one, lose one, etc….
    No surprise on my end we are playing inconsistent and like I have always said, we are no better than last year even if the so-called Super Markov comes back.
    And yes, Toronto, Boston, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh are very good teams Habs fans, while we are an average team at best.
    Yup, Santa Claus won’t give us this gift this year to make the playoffs, better we tank than hope and pray for this team of ours.

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

  24. Stuck_in_To. says:

    For three years we’ve had more-or-less the same lineup of “go to” guys. At various points over this time, the media has opined that the Habs had four lines and were deep and at others that the Habs fell off the depth chart after their top two lines. The Habs have been healthy and they’ve been decimated by injuries. And over all that time, they’ve won the games they should not have won, been wildly inconsistent against teams they matched up well against, and are the answer to every losing team’s slump. You cannot tell what you are going to get from the team on any given night.

    And there is only one person responsible for ensuring a consistent effort is iced every game. I’ve never been on the Fire Martin bandwagon but it is time for the coach to go.

  25. DrA says:

    We were not ready to start the game.
    So when does it become the coach’s responsibility?
    We have many options sitting around in terms of coaches.
    Not making the playoffs would be terrible short term but better long term.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I thought starting Louie would have put some energy in the building and perhaps some of that would have rubbed off on the players. Instead the team took on the personality of its coach.

  26. HabsFanMTL says:

    yeah we need a new Motivator behind the bench but unfortunately after the interview with francois gagnon , Geoff Molson seems to feel we are on the right track, that he agrees with every decision PG has made and thinks JM is doing a marvelous job. It starts from the top dog and thats Molson. So u can';t help but wonder ….Keep filling the bell center seats and its business as usual for him. its all about $$$$$$$$ and not about winning the cup

    • Stuck_in_To. says:

      I harbor a faint hope that Molson was simply being correct with the media and not interfering in the hockey operations which he pays someone else to run but that behind closed doors he is expressing an extreme displeasure.

      However, we’ve all heard the story too many times about rich kids inheriting the family fortune and business and ruining it. Guess we just have to sit back and watch.

  27. cuzzie says:

    This Team is too comfortable.Time and Games are running out. A major move has to be done soon to put a liile fire and urgency in the team. Tick,Tick,Tick!

    Mr. Bad Example!

    • boonie says:

      Looks like PG’s major move is adding a #1 d-man – Markov. If that doesn’t work (add your own definition of “work”), then Molson will have ample evidence to make wholesale changes in the off season.

      PS, I define “work” as battling for a playoff spot and landing somewhere 7 through 10.

  28. yehaken says:

    I have a lot of respect for the Habs, but I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t want them helping my kids with their math homework given the fact that they can’t count to six.

  29. timothy13 says:

    Sorry to crush the bubble about the Habs this season but they lack passion, drive, determination, grit and the ability to do anything to WIN. It has been the same the last few years; the Habs play well and often can win against quality teams and then sleep skate with bottom feeder teams. This season shows a serious lack of commitment from all those involved as well a serious lack of good judgement and decision making. I fail to understand the logic behind the statement ‘we have not figured out how to win.’ Sorry guys but that is stupid. Come on, you didn’t get it together in the exhibition seven or eight games and the debut sucked against the Leafs and yet the Habs hover @ 500. The blues is what this team is and spring can not come fast enough. It is difficult watching the Montreal Canadiens because they usually give their fans a big fat L!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • hab1970 says:

      Habs singing the 12 days of Christmas…
      On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me…a new coach
      On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me… a defenseman with 2 good knees
      On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me…3 players that stayed on the same line
      On the fourth day of Christmas my true love gave to me…4 top lines
      On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me…a new 5 year plan
      On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me…all players over 6 feet tall
      On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me… a real 7 million dollar player
      On the eight day of Christmas my true love gave to me … 8th place in the standings
      On the ninth day of Christmas my true love gave to me…ladies dancing(Chez Paree)
      On the tenth day of Christmas my true love gave to me…10 laser guided pucks
      On the eleventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me…11 golden hockey sticks
      On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love gave to me…a case of 12 Molson Canadian

  30. rhino514 says:

    They are playing with only two good Dmen, everyone else is a liability five on five, though Emelin won´t be soon. You can´t win with that kind of lack of depth on defence.
    Once Markov comes back, if he is close to his old self, the D becomes average. Campoli and Spacek are better than Weber and Diaz at this point. At that point they are definitely a playoff team.
    The problem is there will be less than forty games to climb up the standings byt the time Marky comes back and they may have blown away too many points because of the inept power play by then.
    I think not having the arthroscopic procedure earlier on was the biggest tactical mistake of the season.

  31. smiler2729 says:

    Yeah, the time has come, we all know it, we’ve known it since Game 1, the coach needs to go.

    ‘The system’ or whatever it’s called, handicaps a lot of these players’ natural offensive flair.

    I like JM and during that Halakian playoff run in ’10, I thought we could possibly be seeing another Demers-like Cup win (winning one for a veteran coach who deserves one).

    But the team’s style of play seems to be out of sync with the players’ true style. It’s time to get a coach who is more in tune with today’s NHL game and its players.

    Sorry Jacques, you are the weakest link (on the front line, the weakest is still Goats upstairs, sitting on his hands).

    This team SUCKS!

    ___________________________________
    Jack Edwards sucks chowdah chunks

  32. RJ says:

    Another LIFELESS effort and horrendous PP. The team is truly a reflection of their coach — unanimated, no psyche, no sense of urgency. Unless there is a change behind the bench to infuse some life into this team, expect this all season long.

    Robinson would save the team and save PK Subban. The kid is being ruined by this staff.

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  33. Habfan10912 says:

    Sure thinking this 4 minutes of ice time is doing wonders for Louie L’s development. You gotta be kidding me. Send the kid down today. Probably best to get him the heck outta here anyway so he doesn’t get spoiled being around this bunch including ths tremendous coaching staff.

  34. --Habs-- says:

    Ahhhh!!!!!!!! I didn’t watch but could imagine! Lifeless! No emotion! Lack of readiness! Price holding the fort as much as he could short of blaming him for the shootout loss that we couldn’t score on again so it doesn’t really matter if Price lets in 1 or none because we can’t score one, ever! When did we last score a shootout goal! PK coughing it up all over the Ice, Emelin making a mistake or 2 and some are criticizing him although he’s the only player that could hit a sick on the team. Gionta, Cammy DD all loosing the puck constantly behind the net.
    My only question is how did Max do. Looked at the stats and not a shot on net. Whats up with him.

  35. Marc10 says:

    Too many games have been like this since training camp (and what a sh**** camp that was…)

    When a team is ill prepared for a couple, you make excuses, but when it’s a pattern, you do something about it.

    I say bring in Michel Therrien for a good ol’ fashion bag skate arse kicking… The veterans on this team had their chance to get their act together and they’ve failed. It’s high time to press the panic button and lay the smack down on this disgrace.

    If we’re not going to win, I’d like to see the slackers hurt… And then we can trade them at the deadline for prospects and picks.

  36. RC-51 says:

    I agree with the comment below, I think it’s time for a coaching change! You cannot win under this system if you can’t score. I think this team isn’t as bad as their record would indicate. It’s time

  37. Habfan10912 says:

    I admit I have been guilty of jumping on the fire Martin bandwagon too quickly but is it possible PK’s poor play can be caused by coaching. Maybe PK is being asked to reign in his game and its caused him to think too much instead of reacting. I don’t see the same energy and enthusiasm that we saw last year. I also agree the amount of play hasn’t helped either.

  38. We need D! PK is being overplayed. He looked awful yesterday, it seemed whenever he was in the shot he was either giving the puck away or falling down. Playing so many minutes must be a factor in his rough year.

    http://www.puckbandits.com

  39. The Cat says:

    I know other teams sometimes have stinkers but not as much as Montreal. I wonder what is wrong with habs culture. I mean the habs did the same thing with Carbo at the helm, which incidently were still waiting for the truth to come out of that episode (as promised by Carbo).

    [Disclaimer]: I’m a hockey fan. I care about the habs, but probably not as much as you.

  40. Bertuzzi says:

    What is wrong with this team? The answer is simple: the coach.

    The most goals they can score under “the system” is two.

    Change the coach! I don’t care if they win or lose, I just want to watch them play. I want to watch a hockey game, not a chess match.

  41. sadly optimistic says:

    Watching the game last night I fell into my pattern of “this sucks but they will play better any minute now.” When they continued to “suck” I fell into my second pattern of “There must be something better to watch on TV.” I kept switching channels looking for something to get my mind off of the Habs’ poor and indifferent play. Being sadly optimistic I kept returning to the game hoping they had turned it around. I keep thinking back to their great run against Boston last year and hoping that what they brought to each game was not just a mirage.
    This morning I think back of the “pride” the players used to have here in Montreal. We, the fans, deserve a team is that is as proud to put on the Habs’ jersey as we are to cheer them on. Playing and cheering for the Habs used to be a source of pride.

  42. sadly optimistic says:

    I can’t believe I keep giving this team the benefit of the doubt. “They are losing because their star players have not yet gotten into the zone.” Wait till Markov comes back.” “Some key players must be injured.” The truth is, teams like the Penguins played playoff hockey this year with out their top assets. Talent is one thing you either have or don’t have but “heart” must be part of the culture of the team. Only coaches who know how to enable this culture of “heart” to flourish should be hired here in Montreal. I would rather have a coach here who speaks with “heart” in any language. The head can design systems and tactics but speaking with the heart and the head makes champions.

  43. twocents says:

    That was a piss poor game.

    Hand this team to the youth. Time to bail on everyone over thirty, other than Cole and Markov.

  44. Marc10 says:

    Well at least Yemmy the Tank is going good. I really like this guy. 10 hits… But where oh where is the rest of this team?

  45. RC-51 says:

    losing to the last placed team tonight and we lost last week to the 2nd last team, EMBARRASSING!!

  46. Jim Edson says:

    So, if the trade deadline was tonight what does Goatier do?
    (assuming he is still employed)

    ———————————————————————-
    What does the Commissioner of the NHL do?

    In short, a league commissioner is the action man for the Board of Governors.

    They tell him what they want done and he works to make it happen through his subordinates while making sure that individual franchises play by the rules.

    ******** Translated if you haven’t won the Stanley Cup in 40 years your NHL team is becoming irrelevant in a sports mad city long behind MLB, NFL and NBA teams, you just tell the commissioner(who you gave a new contract at 7 plus million per) to make it happen and the rules are bent sufficiently to action the command.

  47. Dulljerk says:

    Let’s go with the wives theory? WTF? lol. That’s a sad statement. This team has been sucking wind for some time now, whether it be on the road, at home, on the plane or on the bus to the hotel. I think the only thing they have mastered is dressing up to go out for a night on the town. Tear this sucker down, and do it now. We’re drowning here and you’re describing the water!

    “Muckers win games”

  48. The Cat says:

    I really like the youth on the habs. But, other than Cole and Moen, the vets are almost deadweight. The habs were lucky to get the single point they got.

    [Disclaimer]: I’m a hockey fan. I care about the habs, but probably not as much as you.

    • Dulljerk says:

      This Louis Leblanc thing is turning my stomach. He should not be playing in the NHL. That fact that he was brought up is nothing more than a PR move by the team is deflect the fact that they are in big trouble. Give the hometown something to cheer about. It’s as blatant as the nose on your face. Sad moves being made without any consideration for the kid’s development.

      “Muckers win games”

      • The Cat says:

        Im not going to disagree that being francophone didnt help him in being called up (Im sure someone anglo was just as worthy of being called up). I dont think this will be detrimental since its his first call up and he should be sent back soon. If this was his fourth call up and hes given 5 minutes per game on the 4th line, then Id agree with you 100%.

        [Disclaimer]: I’m a hockey fan. I care about the habs, but probably not as much as you.

  49. montreal ace says:

    I thought the Jackets played a good road game last night, and are a better team then I thought they were. Their forwards were hitting our zone with good speed last night, and our D were slower then normal getting the puck out, and did not play well except for a few guys. Emilin what a super game from him, love the way he hits. He hits the way the guys on our 4th line should, there is no energy factor from them at all. One of the easiest fixes in hockey is the fourth line, and it should have been addressed by now. Our big guy Price got us a tie, their big guy Nash got them 2 and he delivered in the clutch. Price was clutch all game long, and if we build a half decent team in front of him, well who knows.

    • Dulljerk says:

      I think virtually every team in the league is a better team than we thought they were. Oh, wait, maybe we aren’t as good of a team as we thought WE were. That’s probably more like it.

      “Muckers win games”

  50. boonie says:

    Searching for logic to explain why a coin comes up heads on a particular flip is a mug’s game. We’re a “.500″ team. The blue jackets are an even 6-6 in their last dozen. We lost in a shoot out. Heads. Tails. Whatever.

    Frustration stems from losing to the lesser teams and besting the better ones.

    Maybe we don’t play down to our competition. Maybe the better ones play down to US…

  51. Seps says:

    Yeah lets all blame the coach, meanwhile the real guy we should be blaming is watching from the pressbox. Will someone please tell me who we have to even come close to Rick Nash? Who else is Martin supposed to put out there? We have a brutal selection, infact I’d say THE worst in the league. Oh beware Sanford, desharnais is coming at you, or power forward Pacioretty who doesnt even have the ability to dangle so the goalie challenges because he knows he’s going to shoot, or the old burned out Gionta, yeah that’s a real threat. And the bench is no better the only mistake he might’ve made was not sending out Leblanc, but the bottom line is we have no goal scorers, so Martin’s just trying to do what he can with the defensive mess (because there’s certainly no offense on the team)Gauthier/Gainey has assembled.

  52. nickster13 says:

    Its pretty simple fellas.
    The only guy besides price who brought his A game was Emelin, coincidentally the guy who doesnt speak english and doesnt know what the coach is saying. Clearly we have some motivational difficulties.

  53. Un Canadien errant says:

    Mike Boone, you wrote:

    “…less than five minutes of ice time for Louis Leblanc in his Bell Centre debut. But let history record the kid had a shot, a hit, a takeaway … and focus enhanced by the 20-year-old’s marital status.”

    Do you mean that his marital status, being single and 20 and a Canadiens in Montreal, should be a major distraction? Because I don’t think the admiring fans will enhance his focus, I’d be the proverbial kid in the candy store, or Chris Chelios in other words, in his shoes. If you mean that it is admirable how he shows resolve in spite of this onslaught of comely distractions, I agree.

    ———————————
    How about it NHL? No fighting, just hockey?

    http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/

  54. HabFanSince72 says:

    If the average NHLer is helping you with your math homework, and you’re not in first grade, you’re in trouble.

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      Sure, some of our heroes are not scholarly giants, but hockey mom is on the right track by asking Dad to be involved in his children’s academic pursuits.

      ———————————
      How about it NHL? No fighting, just hockey?

      http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        I was joking of course.

        However, I’m not sure it’s a good thing for parents to help kids do their homework. The point of homework isn’t to get good grades, it’s to develop the ol’ noodle. Better let them figure it out. But that’s just me.

        Anyway, this is a hockey blog. How about that Curtis Sanford. Better than Budaj isn’t he? I wonder what we got for him.

        • OneTimer says:

          Eh, did Sanford show you anything that really impressed you tonight? He made routine saves that any goalie in the NHL could make. Just a warm body in the crease, as far as I can tell.

        • Un Canadien errant says:

          I think showing active interest is important. There’s a continuum between not caring and doing the kid’s homework for her, and I think somewhere in the middle is asking what the homework is about, making sure it’s done properly and with effort, not just skimmed through, and occasionally helping out on difficult sections. If you’re interested in your kids’ homework, they will be too.

          ———————————
          How about it NHL? No fighting, just hockey?

          http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/

  55. DickandDanny says:

    Once again a sickening pathetic effort. I watched the anti chamber afterwards and Mr Bergeron called it like it is. No emotion, no enthusiasm, from the players and nothing to spark them to play harder by Mr Martin. I think he also referred to the performance as pathetuc. I believe he was referring as much to the coach as he was the players.

    So who stunk tonight (this is the name of my new after the game recap. Kind of like the 3 stars):
    #1 Pacioretty. May as well have stayed suspended. Always one step behing everything happening on the iceand plays like he could care less. Nice skater though, very flashy when he wants to be. Memorable play of the night: Huge benching material give away near the end of the game. Bantam players know better.
    #2 Subban. Yes, I know he logged a lot of minutes tonight, over 30, and he tries hard, but so many bad give-aways. So, this is the new habs philosophy eh, we can’t bench you because we are horrible and have so many injuries so we instead play the hell out of you hoping you do a couple things right. Sub anyone? And when you rush the puck do you forget who you are and think you are Scott Gomez? Do something with it for once. Take it all the way, crash the goalie, make like your Larry Robinson and score, anything please
    #3 Cole. Love the guy but c’mon man quit taking long leisurely circles all over the place and get to the puck carrier already. And finish a play in front of the net for once while your at it. Stops and starts for this guy tomorrow.

    that’s all for tonight folks, can’t wait to see who makes my top 3 next game. I’m Outta here

    “A cannonading blast from the wing, by Lafleur”

  56. Un Canadien errant says:

    It’s not as much fun memorializing my thoughts in this forum when the Canadiens lose. It’s probably not as painful as having to pay to watch the game at the New Forum, but looking at my own humble Canadiens-related expenditures, I now idly reconsider my full-slate HD cable package.

    The Canadiens may be a golden goose, but for the rest of us they laid an egg on Tuesday night. After showing spirit and heart against the Sharks and the Kings, the Good Guys went back to their torpid Anaheim incarnations.

    The only Canadiens who seemed to play to their full potential were the ever-vigilant Carey Price, and controlled demolition contractor Alexei Emelin, who distributed crunches liberally. I may have missed good performances by usually low-key performers like Travis Moen or Josh Gorges, but I won’t take the blame for it, their teammates lulled me to sleep for half the game.

    After losses to weaklings like the Islanders and Hurricanes, the Canadiens usually follow up with a dynamic performance against more inspiring opponents, which we can take heart in, but losing points to teams like the Bllue Jackets gives us a strong sense that we are at best a middling team. We will be in a battle to make the playoffs.

    And we can’t count on the cavalry to come to our rescue. Ryan White is a ways away, and can inject some energy in games like these, but he won’t tilt the ice in our direction. Andrei Markov is also still not on the horizon, and when he returns I think we’ll need to treat him with kid gloves and temper our expectations. Scott Gomez has shown that he cannot produce a positive effect when in the lineup. Hamilton is devoid of NHL talent.

    The RDS boys are starting to look in Geoff Molson’s direction now. I fail to understand what they think he can accomplish mid-season with this team. The solution is not a quick fix away. There is a fundamental lack of depth and talent on our roster, and we can’t put a band-aid on it. We need to be patient with our youngsters and prospects, keep drafting well and amassing assets. Mr. Molson’s role, if it comes to that, will begin this off-season when an organizational review may properly be conducted.

    Our boys are going to have a tough time keeping their chins up for the next couple of days, but will have a worthy opponent on Thursday to measure themselves against in the Canucks. A win might be enough to rinse the taste of this bitter defeat out.

    ———————————
    How about it NHL? No fighting, just hockey?

    http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/

  57. The Dude says:

    It’s pretty simple really ….The Blue Jackets are a much better team than our Habs.Nash ,Carter ,Vermette and Umberger are way better than Cammy,Plecs,Gionta and Gomez,not even f’n close.And here’s the other thing ,we all want these Bluejacket players but do other clubs want our players? I think not so much and you can’t trade Price or Subban or Pax “can you?”
    Add a couple of puzzle fixing athlete’s to Columbus and they’re a contender ….can you really say that about our Canadiens,yeesh! And our up and comers ,do ya see the word superstar anywhere…NO!
    By all rights the next game against the Nucks should bring a sense of clarity to what we have here”A MESS!” and you can thank the hockey gods that Higgins has an infected foot cause they were running 4 deadly lines. Lapierre will want payback …watch out for him! Go Habs Go
    update…the hot David Booth out as well”knee on knee”

  58. ooder says:

    man Emelin is a beaut… i honestly cannot remember the last time we had a d-man who threw a hit. last year i remember subban’s hit on marchand and spacek had a few nice ones. but nothing as consistent as this guy!

    ——————
    The 2010-11 Stanley Cup was not won, but given

  59. Rad says:

    Interesting to read that Carey Price has that kind of indomitable spirit. I didn’t know he was so competitive. He’s a warrior that has the potential to lead this mediocre team out of the wilderness one day.

    Marlon Brando, in the 1954 film On The Waterfront, said “I could’ve been a contender. I could’ve been somebody.” It’s a legendary movie quote that the 2011-2012 Montreal Canadiens may be able to identify with. But Messrs. Gainey, Gauthier, Martin, and Molson have turned our heroes into pretenders with bad trades, bad coaching, overall ignorance, and mismanagement of the product and what it takes to be a contender.

    “Gomez is a great player. We trust him.”
    –Mr. Geof Molson

  60. podbay says:

    The game was tiresome. I thought in Cammelleri we had a natural goal scorer, the only one on the team. Mike is in a season-long funk.

    Why is Darche still playing? He has one goal, one point, so far this year. It is a complete mystery.

    Martin is emotionless. Gauthier is a ghost. With these men setting the pace, is it any wonder the team isn’t motivated? I feel for Price, Subban, Plekanec, Gionta, Cole, DD, Pax, and those that are trying as hard as they can. But without some additional firepower, we will miss the playoffs. And even if we fall down in the standings, what difference will it make in the draft. Gauthier will pick a kid who will take the usual 3-5 years to develop.

    Argh!

    • Malreg says:

      A player who only logs 6 minutes a night is not the problem…

      And 3 years is probably the average for any draft pick to develop and be NHL ready, aside from top 5 picks.

  61. UK-HAB says:

    I’m going to my first ever Habs game in a week on Tuesday against the almighty Islanders. I’ve waited over 4 years to finally see the Habs in action, and thought that my first experience should be in the Mont Royal itself.

    After clearing out my savings to make the trip, I have to say I’m uber worried.

    Tonight the guys were so uninterested that it was a smack in the face of the 20,000+ fans, who pay close to $100s for a nose-bleeder seat! All I want to do is watch some good hockey and have the opportunity to sing some OLE. I have a feeling that this season there will be more boos than oles coming from the crowd, and I’m hoping to Beliveau that the players and the gopher behind the bench dont let that happen!!

    • Peter Young says:

      The Canadiens came through for the Hockey Inside/Out annual summit gathering in Montreal when they trounced the Rangers. Perhaps they’ll do the same for you. Let us hope so. Where are you from in the U.K. and how on earth did you become a fan of the Canadiens? I’m from England, long ago, and also follow the Canadiens long distance from Los Angeles.

  62. WindsorHab-10 says:

    You want solution?

    Fire the idiot behind the bench or suffer until April.

    “Hate Bruins like a sickness”

  63. Feraco says:

    Weber out. Campoli in.

    Diaz out. Spachek in.

    Diaz may be solid on D but is contributing 0 on offense.

    Enough with this 7 D dressed and get a real 4th line.

    Diaz has been great but it’s his 1st yr he can replace Spach next season full time. This team needs wins asap

  64. deuce6 says:

    We will be getting shutout against The Nucks….Bank on it..

    ——————

    Yes, I’m a Hab fan..Wanna fight about it?

    • samTHEman says:

      We shut them out twice last season, don’t remember? Habs play well against teams that should beat them. They match the intensity and tempo. I expect a low-scoring (under 5), tight, speedy back-and-forth game against the Canucks. Hoping Emmy pops a few people.

  65. samTHEman says:

    Martin better not sit Emelin a single game for the rest of the season or I will make sure to ambush him on his way out of Brossard. No, seriously. When Campoli and Spacek come back, sit Weber (or trade), and dress 7 D. Cut Gill’s minutes and play him on the PK mostly.

  66. Peter Young says:

    Mike, the New York Times article you linked to on your game blog page is indeed magnificent. You wrote:

    “• Must-reading: Plow through John Branch’s superb New York Times series on Derek Boogaard. Then try to tell me why fighting shouldn’t be banned in the NHL.”

    Also excellent is the fascinating series of videos that accompany the article. Three of them focus on Boogaard’s entire career in hockey from youth games to the NHL. There are also several related videos, one of which is John Branch’s 16-minute interview with Bettman about brain injuries resulting from fighting and players’ abuse of drugs prescribed to them by team doctors. I have to say that Bettman’s disgraceful capacity for denial is equivalent to Sepp Blatter’s recent proclamation that there is no racism in football (soccer), which he eventually had to retract after he was subjected to a great deal of scorn. Anyway, the article and the videos are superb and worth another mention because they point to very serious problems in the game that all fans should know about.

    Once again the link to the story (which contains the link to the videos under the picture of a young Boogaard at the top of the first page of the story) is:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/04/sports/hockey/derek-boogaard-a-boy-learns-to-brawl.html?_r=1

  67. montreal ace says:

    The Bruins were given the cup, and I will never consider them true champs. The link is great as the story in hockey buzz is true, I just hope more writers start looking into Bettman and Jacobs relationship. The Flyers were a dirty team, but they did not put guys in the hospital like the Bruins, whom have gone over the top with their infractions and disregard for other players.

  68. G-Man says:

    Post of the day. Hang ‘em high! :D

  69. The Cat says:

    Last night isnt about the loss…

    [Disclaimer]: I’m a hockey fan. I care about the habs, but probably not as much as you.


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