About last night …

NewWhite

Sorry for the late posting. The HIO gremlins did me in last night.

Just for the sake of argument – and a good argument might be therapeutic after that traumatic Shootout loss in Buffalo – let’s say your Montreal Canadiens miss the playoffs by a point.
That means that when late April rolls around, the Bell Centre will be dark and the team will be losing $4 million in revenue for each playoff game not being played.
Even if the Canadiens were to be swept out of the first round, they would play at least two home games.
Missing out on that by a single point means Ryan White, who is making a prorated $687,500 this season, will cost Geoff Molson $8 million dollars.

Hockey is a team game, and it’s rare you can single out one player as responsible for a loss. But it happens, and it happened in Buffalo.

The Canadiens had this one in the bag. Tomas Plekanec – along with Carey Price, co-MVP of the Canadiens through 10 games – scored his second goal 45 seconds into the third period to give the Canadiens a 4-2 lead. The goal drove a dagger into the hearts of the Sabres, who had seized momentum in the seesaw game with an 18-shot second period.

Less than seven minutes later, with the Canadiens in control and cruising, White shot a harpoon through his teammates, his coach and Canadiens’ fans.

What was White thinking when he pounced on veteran agitator Steve Ott?

Was he thinking at all?

White was back in the lineup after three games as a healthy scratch. He had ensconced himself in Michel Therrien’s doghouse with two minors and a major during a loss in Ottawa. It was not his first night of irrationality.

So what’s to be done with a player who gets into pointless fights and takes brain-dead penalties.

The Canadiens could trade White to Hockey Night in Canada, but P.J. Stock has the spot in perpetuity. Maybe the Team 690?

Maybe I’m being too hard on White, a nice, friendly Western kid who’s unfailingly cooperative with the media. But as surprisingly pleasant as the first part of the season has been, this Montreal Canadiens isn’t good enough to survive indiscipline.

White wasn’t the only Canadien to have an off-night in Buffalo.

Erik Cole looks slow and distracted. Alexei Emelin, for all his big hits, gets confused and out of position. The L’Antichambre gang thinks he should switch sides.

And what was Colby Armstrong doing on the ice when Buffalo tied it up with two ticks left on the clock?

But the team got stellar performances from Plekanec, Rene Bourque, P.K. Subban, Raphael Diaz, Lars Eller, Brandon Prust and, yes, Peter Budaj, who faced more shots than Carey Price has in any game this season.

Brendan Gallagher scored his fourth and Alex Galchenyuk started the Shootout with a beauty. Hey coach, how about more even-strength minutes for the kids?

If you project last season’s results on a 48-game schedule, it should take 54 points to make the playoffs.

The Canadiens need 41 points in their remaining 38 games – 21 of which will be on the road.

If they get only 40 …

 

879 Comments

  1. CCL says:

    Second thought. put the Kids on the 1st line with Pacioretty.

    DD and Cole 3rd line

  2. montrealtilldeath says:

    As for the referee’s did I miss something? Are the real refs on strike? I have seen one quality ref job all season. I was pissed at white initially but in looking at replays the officials really blew it. At worst it should have been a 2 min on white or a 4 and 2 split. Upon further relection what is White’s job on the team? He was doing it. Coaching mistake.

  3. Ian Cobb says:

    Old fashion Canadian Snow Storm!
    Morning
    PJ’s still on–check.
    Read HIO–check
    Hot coffee—check.
    Wood stove on–check.
    Read HIO –check.
    TSN turned on–check.
    Look out window to see how much snow so far.–check.
    Put another log on.–check.
    Read HIO–check.
    Eat breakfast–check.
    Look out widow at plow filling end of driveway–check.
    Have a dump–check.
    Read HIO–check.
    Put aother log on–check.
    10am coffee break–check.
    Day continues!! on HIO.

  4. Loonie says:

    Carey Price is 7-2 this season.

    As TSN pointed out two nights ago, he has a .970 save percentage at even strength over the last three years.

    I think we’ll be okay.

  5. habs12 says:

    Erik Cole is the master of trying to get around defenders by locking one arm onto their body, and subsequently flipping the player backwards, in the attempt to draw a penalty…Last year he burned right by these guys…

    • Phil C says:

      Exactly. And if the defender cheats to the outside to block him, he violently cuts to the inside with the puck. Every defenseman in the league knows that these are his two moves, yet they still can’t stop him when he is on his game. If you cheat one way or the other he will beat you.

      The problem is that he needs to use his elite speed to pull off this move. And he doesn’t have it right now either from being out of shape, or age, or carrying too much weight, who knows. But until he gets his legs back, he is like a superhero who has lost his superpowers.

      It took him a few months to find his legs last year, so I’m not expecting anything out of Cole until March. That’s why I have no problem breaking up the two and a half men line for now.

  6. frontenac1 says:

    Sit Whitey and DD.Call up Blunden and Dumont.Hell after that pathetic display of goalie protection last night,I would even give Tinordi a shot.

  7. sulham44 says:

    Last night’s loss was as maddening as they come, especially coming the night after losing another winnable game. But cats and dogs aren’t sleeping together and our pet’s heads aren’t falling off.

    This team is infinitely better than last year on all accounts, will likely make the playoffs, and is a refreshing joy to root for. And that was a team loss.

    What was more egregious? White meaning well and standing up for the team, but taking bonehead penalties in the process or Emelin’s hesitancy and ultimately ill-advised pinch that led to Buffalo’s 2nd goal? That was a pretty awful play at the blueline.

    Or how about the first goal that Budaj should have stopped, but was still a legitimate scoring opportunity (Team defense)?

    Yes, White’s penalties were costly, but they came from a good place. He’s going to be an important part of this team moving forward and the moments where we appreciate him will vastly outnumber the others.

    I like this team a whole lot and its future a whole more. That includes White.

  8. Jimmy9Toes says:

    So some of the people don’t want to blame White for the loss, but are real quick to blame MT for his choice of players on the ice at the end of the game with a 1 goal lead. So if White doesn’t pull another bone headed move and we still have a 2 goal lead late in the game and Buf scores with 2 seconds left, we still win 4-3. So blaming MT and saying White should get another chance is funny to me. If i was disciplined by my boss for a bad decision like White was for his bone headed yapping in Ott, then i get a chance to cool my heals, after i am put back in the game i pull the same bone headed move, i most likely would be looking for another job.

    After the game i originally said, ” i hope Whitey never puts on a Habs jersey again.” Now i just hope he realizes his mistake and learns from it in Hamilton. I want him sent down. Armstrong to take up a seat in the pressbox and Dumont called up from the farm. Blunden needs to start to play.

  9. gumper says:

    So, reality is beginning to set in, but did we really think this version of the Habs was going to be that much better than last year’s version? The additions, with the possible exception of Armstrong, have all been positive but nonetheless they are not earth shattering. Just steps in the right direction. Probably the most important changes have happened behind the bench and upstairs. And those, too, look to be positive steps in the right direction. But thinking about the team’s good start one must remember they have had a very easy sched, with 8 of 11 at home, and few really tough opponents. It’s great that they’ve used that start in a positive way, to lay in a good foundation for this shortened season, but we have to remember that things will get tougher from here. We also have to remember that good coaching can only go so far to fix endemic problems with the makeup of this team. I love DD, but he is, at best, a number two centre. And while we have our number one centre now on the team, it will take at least a couple of years for him to grow into that role. Meanwhile, barring a miraculous trade that MB pulls out of his posterior, there isn’t any help in sight at that position. On our so-called top line the only one who may truly be first line material is Max, and he will never reach that potential with his current linemates. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not throwing Cole under the bus, but does anyone really think he’s first line material on any of the top six teams in the league? This is a team with two second lines, a third line that shows promise and a fourth line which is improved from last year, but still lacking a truly scary heavyweight. On defence the team is solid, but one has to wonder if guys like Emelin and Gorges could crack the top four on any of the elite teams. In any case, here too we are lacking a true heavyweight to clear traffic from the front of the net. Having said all this, it’s gratifying to see the young group of talented players expanding piece by piece. Price, Subban, the G men, MaxPac, Eller, all should be with the team for a long time, and there’s still plently of mileage to be gotten out of Pleks, Emelin, Gorges, Diaz and perhaps wee DD. Some of the answers to our defence issues likely are playing in Hamilton right now (Tinordi, Bealieu) As I said, our number one centre is now on the team, so though we are still a couple of years and a couple of key players away from being truly competitive, we are closer now than we’ve been in quite a while. That’s a good thing. So, in other words, it is not a time to despair, but we might want to doff the rose-coloured glasses, and accept the fact that this team will battle this year to make the playoffs. The good start is a positive that Habs fans should be happy about, and they should also be pleased to see the team taking a new direction with a new attitude under the guidance of M. Bergevin. However, we shouldn’t set our expectations so high that when we lose a point due to one player’s lack of self-discipline, we are ready to make him walk the plank. Year one of the next five year plan should be enjoyed. Any positive move, however small, should be celebrated. Now let’s go out and kick some Leaf butt tomorrow.

  10. CCL says:

    Cole and Eller with Bourque. Pleks and Gionta with Pacioretty. see if it works any better. won’t hurt to try. can always revert back.

    DD 4th line. wake up call.

    • habsfan0 says:

      Cole showed me a lot(mostly negative) while the lockout was on.

      I hope I’m wrong, but I have a hunch he will never put up anything close to last year’s numbers for the duration of his contract.

    • dano58 says:

      Love it.

      GO HABS GO!!!

      “Opinions are like assholes and everybody has one.”
      Hopefully the Habs brass only takes the best ones!

  11. habstrinifan says:

    Heard AGAIN the coach comments on White which starts with “Unacceptable”. More I hear it; more I say this has to STOP!

    Enough public whipping from anyone on the team of anyone on the team!

  12. Propwash says:

    White is gonna have to really be the teachers pet if he ever wants to play again.

    ____________________
    DOOOOOOOOOOOOMED!

  13. Sportfan says:

    Like Boone said it wasn’t the first time White has done that, he needs to calm the F down. Also the kids really need to get a bit more ice time what is MT afraid of ? I am not saying give them ridiculous amount but just a bit more

    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  14. habs-fan-84 says:

    Re: Happy Gilmore

    I sincerely hope the organization is not as bipolar as its fan base and isn’t considering trading White.

    Look, the penalty was bad, really bad, but the fans can’t complain now. How many years have Habs fans pleaded for a guy like this?

    White is young and still needs to mature a bit, but he will learn and he will get better. He can be really effective in his role. Maybe Prust needs to have a heart to heart with him lol

    • Loonie says:

      The fans have pleaded for a guy like Prust. Not a guy like White.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      White isn’t going anywhere. Just needs to learn about when to pick his spots. He screwed up again last night but there was a few mistakes. The last goal should not have counted as Budaj was bumped off the puck….these things happen though

      The habs needs to play better 60 minutes and be more physical. Our D men are playing like Marshmellows out there

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      White is playing as if he still has to make the team. Ironically, he is closer to playing his way off it. I think he may finally have learned his lesson though.

    • dano58 says:

      Not sure we are bi-polar just hungry for winning and longing to see another cup run for our Habs. As for White et al his other teamates stupid(lazy) penalties this needs to stop. Also MT needs to send a message to his big guns and sit them a bit or the message will be only the little people will sit. Cole needs to kick start his game and DD needs to learn to win a faceoff and Gionta needs to stop bull riding other players. Play like a team and accept that the refs will do as they see fit and play harder in spite of it. A game is 60 minutes not 40-50.

      GO HABS GO!!!

      “Opinions are like assholes and everybody has one.”
      Hopefully the Habs brass only takes the best ones!

  15. habsfan0 says:

    The bloom is off the rose as far as Habs’ fast start to the season.

    I understand Timo is furious that Therrien is still Habs’ coach this morning after last night’s debacle in Buffalo.

  16. vander10 says:

    Wow! yes we are well into a short season folks I am not trying to avoid the Ryan White blunders he needs to sit in the press box until someone else makes an equal or even more obvious mess up to let him have another shot of redemption.
    I just feel for the whole team the next game against Toronto with tell the tale it will show the fans and the team what charater they have after 2 games they could of or should of won. Let’s see what our habs are made of going forward and hope the lesson’s have been learnt. Oh yes hopefully the officials will let them play it’s been a really sad year in that aspect of the game so far.

    Bill Cameron

  17. frontenac1 says:

    Scrums and Muggings in the Crease late in the game.Same as last year.Opposing forwards have zero fear in doing so.Expect it to continue until Marc gets that Big Nasty Dman that we should have got last summer.

  18. Bash says:

    White was out to get Ott after two dirty plays. But Therien has to tell him on the bench, “NOT TONIGHT!” or at least not until we go up three etc.

    Non call on Ott in the crease…absolutely!

    With 15 seconds left we stopped playing. Lesson learned but unforgivable for most of these players.

    And with just a few seconds on the clock and a scramble cut down a player, take the net off, crosscheck anyone near the net etc.!!!

    We need a sonofabitch clear the crease Dman. Trade Weber, Kaberle, White, to get that player.

    Pac is not taking the puck to he net (as Cole used to). Why not?

    “If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” (anon)

  19. habsguy says:

    So when does MT stop this silly game hes playing with PK and start playing him in ALL key situations. I didnt see the game, but when I heard they scored with 2 seconds left, I knew PK couldnt have been on the ice, when I got home and saw the replays….. well you know !!
    On the White penalty, no interference on Ott ????, #32 reached in from the player box, no call for that?
    No interference call on the tying goal ? I thought the rule is when the ref loses sight of the puck they blow the whistle ???

    • Loonie says:

      We were lucky White didn’t get 2-5-10 for instigator, fight and misconduct on the play.

      White drops his gloves and jumps Ott, starts punching without a reaction.

      We would have been short for 5 straight minutes without the benefit of the penalty being over on the first Sabres goal, and then would have had another two minutes to kill.

      • habsguy says:

        not making excuses for white, he deserves the bulldogs after that , BUT if the ref called interference on Ott , maybe it doesnt happen !!….Maybe..just saying

        • Loonie says:

          There was no reason to call interference in my opinion. And White immediately jumped Ott. He didn’t look toward an official before doing it.

          • habsguy says:

            take another look at the reply, see if the puck was anywhere near White, its called interference, and with a whistle when it happened maybe white doesnt jump on him, maybe!!

    • Chris says:

      Subban and Bouillon had just finished a 1 minute shift and Therrien didn’t seem to want to use his timeout, even though Plekanec was out of gas from his own long shift that just ended.

  20. Hockey Bob says:

    Erik Cole is out of shape, me thinks he should have spent the lockout training and not distributing childish hats and hoisting brews.

    • shootdapuck says:

      And announcing his possible retirement over CBA issues!

      =================================================
      The cranial flatulence of PJ Stock:

      “Le problem est Markov n’a pas jouer un seul game cette annee”
      “Louis Leblanc est un kid locale”
      ” I have a pet peeve”

  21. dano58 says:

    Everyone is bashing White as we should for his knee jerk reaction but what of Gionta’s penalty in the second when he thought he was a bull rider on the sabre and jumped on his back for a ride. Captain of the team and such a dumb play from an experienced player. Also MT not having size in front of net at end of game when they pulled goalie. And in B’s game continually using DD on faceoffs when he was clearly overmatched. Bring back Yannic Perrault to teach these guys how to win faceoffs. It’s a key element to the game.

    GO HABS GO!!!

    “Opinions are like assholes and everybody has one.”
    Hopefully the Habs brass only takes the best ones!

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      Bad penalties are a trademark of this team and not for the first year. There was quite a parade to the box in the second period, and by all rights they should have been down already. This must be addressed if there is to be any meaningful progress.

  22. Loonie says:

    Another day passes, another game ticks away with Eller being our second best centreman and he remains on the fourth line.

    meri……nevermind.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Did we not see Eller taking some shifts with the Gally’s?

      • Loonie says:

        Two until Gallagher got in a dust up and one twenty second powerplay shift.

        Three shifts outside of that fourth line while Desharnais keeps stinking the joint up.

        The question becomes. How long does this continue before it’s acknowledged that Eller is playing better consistently? The second is, will the meritocracy become consistent?

        Edit: Incidentally, I could easily make the argument that last night’s game was Galchenyuk’s worst in the young season. So why insert something(Eller) onto that line that could change how it’s playing? Why not do the right thing and follow your philosophy. Show Desharnais or Cole that their play warrants temporary demotion and give their spot in a scoring role to a guy consistently generating scoring chances with pluggers and playing well defensively?

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Maybe I am being optimistic for no reason, but I can’t help but think MT is seeing and recognizing Eller and how well he is playing. I think we are soon to see Eller regularly on a line other than the 4th. Eller is leaving MT with no choice as a result of his strong play.

          • Loonie says:

            I acknowledge that Therrien is seeing the good play from Eller. I’ll give you that because I’m not blind.

            My problem here is that Desharnais has been crapping the bed for the majority of the season with no consequence. Kaberle? Benched. Moen? Benched. White? Benched. Eller? Benched.

            It may not be an issue here on this board. But I guarantee that if the inconsistency in the handling of personnel continues, players in the room will notice and won’t like it.

          • habsfan0 says:

            “Desharnais has been crapping the bed for the majority of the season with no consequence. Kaberle? Benched. Moen? Benched. White? Benched. Eller? Benched.”

            It doesn’t take a Lieutenant Columbo to realize there’s a trend here.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            I don’t dispute that Tom. DD is getting a lot of extra line and better prove he can back it up or it may indeed create an issue as you see.

          • montrealtilldeath says:

            Do not put money on that. If you observe closely with respect to Eller PK and a few others you can see J Martin’s biases in the attitude of MT towards these players. People forget Martin is still around and part of the discussion. Consensus bias is a hard pattern to break. Remember how long it took to get Plekanic off the PP point and it was brutal

    • The Jackal says:

      LOL. We get it coach.

  23. Habsssssssswin says:

    Ott, Ott,Ott … Killed us last night by doing exactly what he was brougt to Buffalo to do ..draw penalties and run interference…
    Did the coaching staff not warn of this? … Damn, the only thing he didn’t do was score in the shootout ..The little agitating S.O.B…

    • habsnyc says:

      We had a local guy like that too, who could also score a pretty goal. I forget why they traded him.

      Blue, blanc et rouge. Red and White for Canada. Blue for Smurfs.

      • shootdapuck says:

        Really?

        He who spent summers taking boxing lessons only to drop to his knees as soon as gloves came off on the ice!

        This couldn’t be a veiled reference to Yappierre, the closest he got to a “pretty goal” was watching from his turtle/fetal position.

        =================================================
        The cranial flatulence of PJ Stock:

        “Le problem est Markov n’a pas jouer un seul game cette annee”
        “Louis Leblanc est un kid locale”
        ” I have a pet peeve”

  24. habsnyc says:

    The organization cannot have it both ways. On the one hand, it cannot sign White, Moen, Armstrong and Prust and be the most penalized team in the NHL and on the other hand get upset when an aggressive penalty is a factor in a loss.

    The White penalty did not lose the game, but it was a factor in the loss. The goalie interference non call at the end of regulation evened things out with the interference call that saved two points for Montreal against Ottawa. The shootout went poorly. Montreal was out shot in this game 40-32. They had no plan to bottle up the leading goal scorer in the NHL.

    The team cannot be littered with aggressive non skill players and not expect penalties. Therrien has to live with the consequences of putting out White in the third period against Ott. He has to know that White took a bad penalty in the last game he played and should not put him back in that circumstance. If Montreal misses the playoffs by a point over 48 games, then the team was not good enough to make the playoffs. The media loses credibility when blaming the 20th player on the roster for a potential playoff miss. Teams do not lose because their worst player was not good enough. They lose because their best players do not get it done.

    Blue, blanc et rouge. Red and White for Canada. Blue for Smurfs.

  25. The Cat says:

    Tell tale Stat of the day:
    So far this year:

    Ryan White is a +1
    Tomas Plekanec is a -2

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

  26. 123456 says:

    OK foks – I didn’t read the posts below because I am sure they are dumping on Buddy and White.

    I was at the game so I have no benefit of replays, but here is my take:

    1) Thanks Gionta for taking a minute to take a picture with my kid after the game. Great guy.

    2) Buddy made some good saves. One goal was weak – the shot from the slot that looked like it went through him.

    3) Sabrers tying goal Ott kicked Buddy back into the net – how is that not a penalty? First period that’s a Sabres penalty – having said that… with second left you clear hte net – smash bodies. Habs needed to be tougher.

    4) White – I have been a big fan of his, but sometime you need to let the ones you love go. And by lettin ghim go I mean PUSH him away.

    5) Bourque – OMG he is 1000 times better than last season.

    6) Patches – Miller struggled on every shot he took, the puck leaves his stick FAST.

    7) Habs were the better team last night – Sabres Dfense is weak and the Habs took the puck away many times.

    8) The young G’s look good but they still make mistakes that you do not see Pleks, Gionta and company make.

    9) Armstrong is better than I thought (I didn’t think much of him to be honest)

    10) I have been to three (3) games in the Price era and have never seen him play.

  27. habsfan0 says:

    Up to 30 centimetres of snow expected for the GTA today, which for Toronto is worse than a nuclear holocaust.

  28. Arrow77 says:

    Even though Budaj can’t really be blamed for the loss, you can’t tell me things wouldn’t have been different with Price in net. Twice the Canadiens took the lead, twice they give it up right away. He has to make the important save at one point.

    And I know many people didn’t like Hal Gill because of how slow he was and because he didn’t hit like a guy of his size should. Those points are valid. Still, the guy gave some elements to the team that have been missing since he left. Kaberle and Webber are not the depth we need right now. We need a big d-man strong enough to push people out of the front of the net. Bouillon and Emelin are great when they have some open ice to make the punishing hit but the slot is about standing still and shoving people. The blocked shots seems to be down also (although that might be just my perception).

  29. Hobie Hansen says:

    That was a tough loss! I was in the car listening on the radio for half of it and when I heard the Ryan White fiasco I couldn’t believe he could be that stupid!

    And Michel Therrien definitely has a case with those refs. Steve Ott is in the blue paint, bumping Budaj with other guys are whacking away at the puck that was under Budaj’s pad for a lengthy amount of time. There could have been a penalty or a whistle.

    Therrien should have called a timeout during the last two minutes of last night’s game to get everyone on the same page, since the team has had a few brain cramps in crucial situations lately. He might have and I possibly forgot?

    Tough two losses where we could and probably should have won both games. I think Price should have got the start last night because you don’t want to risk dropping two in a row this short season.

    Saturday’s game against the Leafs went from a good rivalry game to a very important game all of a sudden.

  30. TommyB says:

    It’s too easy to point to Ryan White and say there’s the reason we lost last night. No doubt about it, White’s brain cramp double minor allowed the Sabres the opportunity to climb back into the driver’s seat (even if they had no idea where they were going). Lindy Ruff’s Sabres were awful last night.

    The Sabres sleepwalked through the entire first period. The Habs, recognizing this fact, let them sleep. When you’re in the other guys barn and he’s snoring, don’t wake him up. When this is going on and you come out of the first period even (though you could have been up 1-0 had it not been for the first of two soft goals scored on us immediately after we had taken the lead) then you are playing a decent road game. The Sabres played better, not great, in the second period and you still came out on top with a 3-2 lead (which would have been 3-1 had it not been for softie number two, scored on you immediately after taking the lead). You’re playing a good road game.

    Then the third period starts and you immediately take a two goal lead (amazingly, no softie allowed immediately after stretching your lead). From this point on, you should almost coast to a win, having played a good road game. But White’s brain fart allowed the Sabres back into it, and a brutal non-call on the tying goal (definitely looked like goaltender interference to everyone except the officials) sent the game to OT. It was predictable that the contest would go to the shootout, and at that time, was I the only one who said “oh, *#$#, it’s Miller vs Budaj”?

    I don’t often disagree with Boone’s ALN comments, but I do this time. Budaj did not play well. Period. Never mind the number of shots on goal. None of them were really very threatening. He let in two soft goals during regulation time, and he was not good in the shootout.

    I give MT credit for using Chucky in the shootout. But why oh why would he not also use Subban and maybe Gallagher? It’s the young kids today who have this shootout thing down. They have the moves. They grew up with the shootout being a part of their game. I know, and I understand, that in MT’s mind he had a good plan. It’s never a bad thing to go with your captain, and Bourque has been playing well and has been a scoring threat in every game so far, so MT’s plan was not all that bad. Trouble was, Budaj was not up to the task at the other end of the rink. Please, Mike Boone, do not make excuses for him.

    So if there is individual blame to be pointed out as the reason for last night’s loss, yes Ryan White deserves a finger pointed at him. But it was a two finger-pointing night if you ask me.

  31. The Cat says:

    MT should play Prust and the kids a little more.

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

  32. Ian Cobb says:

    Match ups is a large part of coaching! Vanic was put on the ice to get the tying goal, he is a huge man.
    Therrien countered with Armstrong up front, and Emilin on the back end. Where was PK and Boullion to clear the front of the net. Therrien does not know his players yet and he better get up to speed soon or his great team start was just a fluke!

    • Chris says:

      Vanek (6’2″, 205 pounds) was offset by Markov (6’0″, 204 pounds) and Gorges (6’1″, 203 pounds). Emelin was not on the ice.

      I don’t really understand why Armstrong was out there. Plekanec probably should have been given a timeout rest, as he had just finished a 1 minute shift. Eller was out for faceoff insurance. I would have preferred to see Prust out there over Armstrong, but Therrien has a strange love affair with Amrstrong.

  33. Ghosts of the Forum says:

    @remi — Moen is hurt, that’s why White drew in.

    Regardless of White’s stupidity, the goal was created by painstakingly obvious goalie interference. We was robbed!!

  34. La Duke 16 says:

    ***So the question of the morning is: What can we get on the open market for Cole, White and Armstrong? ***

    If I ran the Canadiens – White would never put on the jersey again after costing us a game. If we were down 2 goals, maybe – but up two goals late in the thrid period – your career is done in Montreal Whitey!!!

  35. 24 Cups says:

    I just looked at Peter Budaj’s record from last year. When doing so, I think we have to keep in mind that he played for a last place team.

    17/5/7/5/2.55/.913 While in net, he collected 15 points in 17 games which is below the record of other eastern conference back-ups such as Biron, Hedberg and Garon.

    Playing behind an elite goalie, I think it’s safe to say that Budaj should get around 8-10 starts (I didn’t bother to chart out the Hab schedule) this year. That means for 9 starts he needs to grab around 10-11 points. Assuming he gets another 7 starts, he’s going to have to go 5-2 or 4-2-1.

    I’m not here to dump on Budaj, as most posters seemed happy with his performance last year. However, if the team is to make the playoffs then he’s at least going to have to break even on his infrequent starts. The other issue to consider is which games does Budaj play in. Do you save him for weaker opponents (like last night) or do you use him exclusively for back-to-back games in order to keep Price fresh? I think that decision is tougher than most fans realize.

    What about Hamilton? The well is dry there. A trade? Now you are going to give up a 2nd or 3rd rounder for a replacement. A replacement who is probably an emergency fill-in who will only play a half dozen games. Teams don’t trade for back-ups, they sign them as free agents during the summer for around a mil or so.

    If Price can beat Toronto then the team will have 15 points in it’s first 11 games. That should be enough to make up for Budaj’s shaky start. Looking at the next two weeks, Budaj’s next start should be either Feb 18th at home against Carolina or Feb 19th on the road against the Rangers. Either way, it pretty well becomes a must win game for him and the team.

    • Loonie says:

      I like the question of when a backup should play because there’s no right answer.

      But I have the mindset that you feed your backup to a team you aren’t expected to beat. The reasoning is that if you get shelled your starter isn’t the guy getting lit up and his confidence remains intact. If your backup manages to get a victory against a team he shouldn’t or isn’t expected to beat the entire team and your backup are glowing with confidence.

      Just my opinion.

      • The Cat says:

        Yep, nothing to lose, everything to gain.

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

      • 24 Cups says:

        Here’s what I don’t get. Budaj and White are basically fighting for their jobs from year to year. With that in mind, why the hell did these two goys not find some kind of employment during the lockout? I don’t care if it was in the ECHL, just get in some playing time so they would be ready to jump out of the gate quickly.

        • Loonie says:

          White was injured wasn’t he?

          I don’t know about Budaj but goalies can add a year to their careers by taking a year off. The physical grind they go through is unreal.

      • punkster says:

        What?

        Edit…for Tom… you’d play your backup against the team you don’t expect to beat?

        ***SUBBANGIN’ NOW BABY!!!***

  36. remi_10069 says:

    MT gets the blame again, thats 2 in a row. Moen has been sucking but to put White in was a mistake. He has proven (now a 3rd time) that he’s too stupid to play in the NHL. Budaj sucks plain and simple. He looks like he’s scared of the puck, he actually pulled his blocker in on one of the goals. That’s what they teach you, make yourself smaller. We need a new backup. Cole needs to be sat, or maybe some AA meetings. Emelin looks like he’s boozing too. Finally the shootout selections, wtf was MT thinking. I’m sure they are great in practice (most likely on Budaj) but come on. Miller was having trouble high blocker all night so put guys in who can fire the puck. Pac? Cole? Markov? But, all Budaj has to do is freeze the puck and we win…also, should have been no goal. Fak.

    pipes

  37. smiler2729 says:

    So if Bonehead White is the goat last night, then Plekanec gets it for the Bruin loss.

    I don’t see anyone screaming for his head…

    _______________________________________
    Jack Edwards is a clam.
    Gary Bettman is a bobblehead.

  38. rendezvous says:

    Yeah,we have work to do.White will take the heat but I am concerned at the several obvious areas of concern.First,Armstrong doesn’t get it..horrible.Second,smurf frustration..Gionta arms wrapped around neck of opponent,Desharnais legs wrapped around opponent.Third,protect a lead…..seconds left game under control..need finishers on the ice…..love the new team effort but lots of work to make this a playoff team.

  39. HabFanSince72 says:

    For you Bulldog watchers – how is Leblanc doing?


    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

    • BJ says:

      Not well except the last game in which he scored two. He’s looked lost and discouraged. His skating is good but he has no net direction, maybe its because he’s not playing on a very good team, but he has not looked like a first round pick. Having said that he did have a bad ankle injury 3-4 games in and he did look better the last game. I’m hoping he builds on that.

  40. Loonie says:

    Ryan White isn’t exactly the only thing wrong with this team.

    Max Pacioretty is still hurting. He doesn’t have his physicality or speed back.

    David Desharnais must learn to move the puck quicker. It isn’t that teams have figured him out. He’s a smart hockey player. But he isn’t being afforded time and space. He needs to use one touch passing and quicker shooting to regain success. He isn’t sneaking up on anybody now.

    Colby Armstrong has to stop being used on the penalty kill and critical late game situations. In consecutive games dating back to the loss to the Senators he’s made at least one bone head play. He often makes the wrong decision with the puck on the penalty kill. For example he has a habit of shooting the puck the long way out of the zone when the easy play up the middle is there.

    The team defense will suffer lapses in judgement, it’s new to them.

    Pacioretty needs to get healthy and Desharnais and Cole need to understand that their games last year won’t automatically lead to the same success this year.

  41. HabFanSince72 says:

    Chris – momentum is real and its been demonstrated scientifically in many different sports.

    It’s even been observed in animals – in males that engage in fighting behavior during mating season for example.

    At a psychological level, recent successes build confidence.

    It’s been demonstrated in traders (more profits after a profitable day on average), in tennis players (more likely to win a point after winning a point), etc …

    It isn’t everything but it’s a real phenomenon.


    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

    • krob1000 says:

      I couldn’t agree more.
      Momentum is very real….neagtivity and positivity are contagious. As long as people have emotions then future actions will be affected previous actions. People ar enot numbers or odds…..they are very much affected by self doubt, racing minds, emotional ups and downs, loss of focus on task at hand as a result of surroundings. Saying momentum is not real is like saying pressure is not real…pressure is very real…and leads in some cases to the same self doubt that negative momentum can cause. Momentum is maybe too all encompassing of a term I will give him that…but to think people or teams cannot have the winds collectively knocked out of their sails by stupidity or negativity is completely and utterly false …until the game is eventually played by remote control cyborgs anyway.

      • Chris says:

        For 20 minutes? That is my beef.

        I’ll buy for a shift or two. But Montreal weathered that storm and were back playing good hockey.

        And then they had a brain fart.

        • krob1000 says:

          But it compounds unlkess you do something positive to alter your teams state fo mind… so it becomes a series of actions

          • Chris says:

            So White’s penalty was a non-issue at the end, as the team had a series of very positive shifts to alter their state of mind.

            Buffalo had 3 shots and Hecht was penalized for a neutral zone hook in the 12 minutes between goals. Not exactly a barn-burning performance.

    • Chris says:

      Momentum isn’t real. But the psychology is.

      So what we’re really saying is that our players aren’t as mentally strong as they needed to be. I’m okay with that…human beings are fallible.

      But the psychological side of momentum is often tied to recent successes building confidence, but also building recklessness. There are countless examples of this in society, and in professional sports.

      So a good team will see that the other team is desperate and gambling and they will take advantage of that. An average team or weak team will not. Montreal, thus far, has not shown that they have the ability to make a team pay for that recklessness.

      The physiological response is due to an adrenaline rush. Adrenaline rushes do not generally last 20 minutes for highly conditioned athletes who have been in these exact situations countless times before.

      The problem with many of these studies is separating the confounding variables. A tennis player winning a point is more likely to win another point. But how do we remove the bias of the fact that a particular player might be simply better than their opponent. Every game features won points for both players. The best players win more of them. It is pretty rare that you see a weaker player go on a long roll against a top player. And when it happens, there are just as often confounding variables such as minor injuries at play.

      I’m not sure I accept the trading analogy. Everybody wants to get in on a bull market. If there is a positive day, traders will gamble that it will continue and pile money in hoping to make even more money.

      I know that such things do exist in the animal world (the aforementioned adrenaline rush), but I just haven’t seen a lot of proof that momentum is inexorable, that a line going out with the collective mindset of “We’re going to dominate this shift” (or “We’re going to make this market go even more positive”) can’t reverse the trend.

      In finance, there are real things that cause swings. A bad earnings report, a government economic decision, mergers, etc. that influence behaviour.

      In hockey, there is only the shift. It is a simple game. If you have the puck, the other team does not and therefore their momentum is broken. Do that for a couple of shifts (as Montreal did late in yesterday’s game) and it is somewhat strange to be maintaining that an event 20 minutes before, interrupted by a period of excellent, agressive play by the Habs, was responsible for the tying goal or even the mindset of the Sabres that they could score that goal.

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        ” A tennis player winning a point is more likely to win another point. But how do we remove the bias of the fact that a particular player might be simply better than their opponent.”

        It’s possible to do so for example by comparing players who on average are equal, or where there is a lot of data.

        Federer might win 60% of his points against Murray, but if he wins 70% of the points following a winning point and 57% following a loss, and the difference is significant, and if the same goes on average for many other players, then we have a finding.


        Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

      • krob1000 says:

        It is all psychological..that is true but I thought was a given the nature of the use of the term as it realtes to hockey. Every shift is not independent of the one prior though…as much as we would like it to be….some players get energized watching their teammates dominate a shift or score a goal, some players crumble when the game gets phsyical, some players get angry,etc,etc, these all affect the game and we have seen Habs teams in the past with deafeated attitudes and winning cultures are very much contagious as well. The attitude and belief you can win can lead people to stay the course or plan and continue to do the little things and not get pschologically sidetracked which leads to selfish play, angry actions, over thinking, panic,etc

        Goalies get hot…this is another version of momentum where they beleive they can stop anything, they do not give up on anything and for whatever reason they are so focussed on the task at hand they get into a zone that makes them better than normal….this can last a lot longer than an adrenaline rush…there is so much psychological in sports …confidence is crucial and can and will make or break an athlete along witht he ability to respond to adversity.

        • Chris says:

          But this ties into my point.

          Is it White’s fault that the team’s psychological state crumbled? And was there actual evidence that it DID crumble, or was this just another in a mounting pile of goals scored “against the run of play” against the Montreal Canadiens this season?

          Do White’s actions serve as a convenient excuse to ignore the more compelling problem, that Montreal too easily gives up goals when it should be in control?

  42. CharlieHodgeFan says:

    White’s a classic. He is putting what he has to prove, as an apparent idiot trying to land a job, ahead of what his team needs to do – win games.
    A team player? He flushed the hard work of his more talented team mates who had built a lead. Somewhere in his brain he thinks he has to punch his way to permanent employment, and he is doing that no matter what the repercussions are for his team. He acts when it suits him, and not when it would help the team.

    He seems very unclear on the concepts involved.

  43. adamkennelly says:

    I don’t agree at all with Boone’s assessment of what went down. White did what he is supposed to do – not his fault Therien can’t figure out who to put on the ice at the end of the game, or which goalie to start.

    Armstrong is utterly useless.

  44. gexx says:

    time to get another backup goalie this guy isnt cutting it anymore,,come on they should have put Price to take the shootout,,White get rid of him causing team loses,,,Number 1 get another goalie to backup Price the guy cant play all the games hes human also,,,Penalties penalties thats the story,,,,

  45. BJ says:

    Washington might be desperate (in fact we could also be with White) would White for Erskine work?

  46. ralphkim says:

    Well, I am in Florida…watching this game on Live streaming.. I am rejoicing after it was made 4-2 …Happy that this team is for real and have made a showing after a tough Boston loss that they could have won.. THEN… again White does not listen to Michel who had told him and others to pick their times well… White is NOT an NHL’er.. and I say that with respect for him… He belongs in the AHL … He thinks that he still has to prove himself … Wrong.. There are better guys in Hamilton.. who are more team oriented and a lot faster and smarter.. Pls don’t keep him on this good team that is progressing so well this year.. I was really upset when they scored twice.. Yes bad choice of players on the ice at the end and in the shootout. Gionta cannot score and Rene has little finess for a shootout.. Try the other young kid who can score , PK, Markov etc

  47. BJ says:

    Am I missing something here. Silfverberg gets called on a no goal penalty for brushing up against Price. Ott is piggybacking Budaj in the crease with every other player and its OK?

    • The Cat says:

      Yeah, you can do all that stuff but for god sake don’t accidentally hoist the puck over the glass!

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

  48. rhino514 says:

    Why is NO ONE mentioning that Moen was sat??
    This would have been big news a year ago, when everybody raved about all the “good little things” that Moen does.

  49. Lee D says:

    Heartbreaking…no doubt about it. Really, though, we were all crying for more toughness. White showed bad judgement but at least he’s tough. Budaj really lost the game for us…don’t tell me he was good. He was OK, and that’s not enough.

    Cole is slow out there….we can all see it. Max is inneffective. And Gionta? Openly inept…..why?

    Plekanec, Subban, Diaz, Bourque, the kids….brilliant. Very bad shoot out choices besided Chucky…..how about Pleks? When I saw Gionta I knew we were done.

    Lee

    • montrealtilldeath says:

      Should have been Gorges and PK on ice at the end of regulation time. Look at the size of Innis and Vanek. I love Markov but at the wrong end of a back to back he was tired. Vanek is a big strong young bull that can bring it. You need a strong young bull like PK to match him. It came down to a rugby scrum in our crease and as in rugby the guys with the extra push won the scrum. In OT it also appeared that MT was coaching for a tie and a shootout. Look down your bench man we have no match for Vanel, Innis and Pomanville who is death to the Habs. We had to win in OT. Markov Diaz, PK Bullion!! Has to be PK and Markov to go for it. Buffalo had to be laughing.

  50. Filthy Phil says:

    One point in a back to back game, on the road, back up goalie, after facing the bruins, and against a decent team. I’ll take that all season. i wonder who has the beat record in the second of back to back games and would like to see where they land at the end of the season.

    • Greg says:

      In what universe is Buffalo decent this year? They just went 1-6-1 and we were leading with 9 seconds left to go in their zone.

      We gave away a point last night.

  51. Ian Cobb says:

    White and Armstrong are not close to being NHL’ers. I am not sure that in a two for one trade, we could even get a case of beer, but lets try!

    I will lose all respect for Therrien’s no excuses philosophy, if he does not get rid of him, along with Armstrong.
    Therrien’s butt is on the hot seat for not having PK, Gorges and Boullion to clear the front of our net, what is this coach thinking always using Dias, Emilin and Markov for net protection.????

    It has all been said by many, It is time to see what this coach is made of.!!

    • habstrinifan says:

      I want Blunden! I think he will surprise everyone as Gallagher has. Blunden is not as fiery or energetic ‘looking’ in his game but he really plays a solid game of eliminating the opponent from the play.. without fanfare. I want Blunden!!!!!!!!!!!! I freakin want Blunden!!!!!!!! Over White and Armstrong!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  52. commandant says:

    White actually got off light here. For all the complaining about the Refs, they would have been justified in giving White an instigator 2 minutes and Fight (5 minutes) leaving us shorthanded for 7 straight minutes. Its happened before, and I really don’t think we would have had much aregument if they called it that way.

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
    http://lastwordonsports.com/

  53. montrealtilldeath says:

    Should have been Gorges and PK on ice at the end of regulation time. Look at the size of Innis and Vanek. I love Markov but at the wrong end of a back to back he was tired. Vanek is a big strong young bull that can bring it. You need a strong young bull like PK to match him. It came down to a rugby scrum in our crease and as in rugby the guys with the extra push won the scrum.

  54. HabinBurlington says:

    I wonder if this isn’t a perfect scenario for a guy like Scott Mellanby to spend some time with Ryan White. Mellanby played a very effective game combining skills and physicality. His penalty minutes were huge early in his career and understands what it means to be a player who needs to contribute physically.

    I would hope that he and White could spend some time discussing the finer points of what is expected and needed from Ryan.

  55. JF says:

    It’s unfair to say White cost us the game, although he certainly cost us a goal. At that point in the game and with a 2-goal lead, he would have been better advised to swallow the insult and keep playing.

    But a lot of factors caused us to lose the game. Budaj was fighting the puck for the first half of the game and was certainly weak on the first goal, although he made some good saves later (and Diaz made an excellent one).

    With 14 seconds to play, the puck was in the Sabres’ end. All we had to do was keep it there.

    Then there’s the officiating. The tying goal should probably have been waved off, but the Senators’ tying goal the other day should not. They say these things tend to even out.

    The real problem is our inability to protect a lead. This was the third game in which we’ve blown a 2-goal lead. We won the other two (against NJ and Winnipeg), we lost this one. Lead protection was a huge issue last year, in which we must surely have led the league in blown leads. It is still a problem, particularly in the third period. We need to take a lesson from the hated Bruins, who gave us a textbook example of lead protection in the previous game. Shut the other team down, keep them to the outside, get the puck deep, win the battles on the boards…. We couldn’t do that last year, regularly finding ourselves massed in front of our goaltender and simply trying to fend the other team off. We still need to work at it.

    Let’s just beat the Leafs on Saturday.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      Jane! discipline is not in his head and he is resposible for two lost games, along with the coach for not having the correct defence on the ice to give net protection,( Gorges, PK and Boullion) not Emilin, Dias or Markov.!!

      Look at the stats and see who has been on the ice for most goals against this season.

      • Chris says:

        Gorges was on the ice.

        • Ian Cobb says:

          Right! but with PK?, no!, Boullion, no!

          Have you ever stood beside Vanic, Who do you think could move him out from in front?
          Match ups is a large part of coaching my friend!!

          • Chris says:

            Thomas Vanek is 6’2″, 205 pounds.

            Andrei Markov is 6’0″, 204 pounds.

            It isn’t exactly a size mismatch.

            The problem was that the Canadiens, as they so often do regardless of who is on the ice, turtled. They collapsed 5 guys down into the crease and dug at the puck. If Subban is on the ice, I can assure you he would also be digging at the puck.

            I can assure you that because I watched him do it countless times last season. That being said, Subban and Bouillon had just come off a 1 minute shift (18:03-19:03) and Therrien was strangely reluctant to use his timeout.

  56. Habfan4lfe says:

    I can see why Boone is at home. This was the problem last night.
    – bad biased refs.
    – poor coaching/lineup changes for a team looking to rebound from a clock cleaning. Price should have been in nets. This insistence to play the BACKUP is idiotic. Price doesn’t need a break.
    – Gionta useless and Cole Mk of playing well

    Blaming Emelin ridiculous. That goal Boone speaks of was not Emelins fault it was the offensive player not coming back with his player. Plekanec to be exact, not first or last time.

  57. Habfan10912 says:

    If we lose to Toronto Saturday night does the “tank” once again become relevant?

    ———————————–

  58. 69HABS says:

    Excuses excuses excuses … Blah blah blah …

    Go ahead Boone whip White & praise Boodaj. Your begining to sound like the washed up Red Fisher here!

    That last goal was on Therien for not having the brains to put the right players on the ice for the last 30 seconds …

    Oh and the two very soft goals on Boodaj …

  59. habstrinifan says:

    My 1ST hockey thought this morning.

    Let us as fans criticise Ryan WHITE but:

    Let us NOT vilify and crucify him. I cant stand another ugly turn on one individual among Habs fans/management/and anything connected with Habs. He made a mistake… sit him.. teach him.. but do it as a member of our family. Enough ugliness in this short season.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Hopefully he doesn’t get a sniff of ice for a long time and by then we fans will have forgotten. :)
      His penalty, especially given what he did a week ago was an indication that Mr. White ain’t so bright.

      ———————————–

    • HabinBurlington says:

      That is a very good point. Having said that, I don’t think calling it a braindead play is inaccurate. I like White and I hope he indeed learns, he does have things in his game this team needs and could use. But for him to do this in the Ottawa game and again last night is not good.

      I think he is bright enough and perhaps this will be the learning tool he needs. He certainly spoke well about it after the game.

      • habstrinifan says:

        No calling him out is ok as a fan. But I have to be fair. I complained when Therrien seemed to embrace public criticism of Subban and act almost as part of the ‘old boys club’ when answering questions from his former cohorts. I didnt like it then and dont like it now. He can say simply “I am disappointed and we will deal with it in the room”. Then he can bench White.. that is all his perogative and expected by players. But one cannot keep giving the ‘rest of the team’ even if subconsciously scapegoats for failing to accomplish their one goal of the night. Win a hockey game. Mentally they have to accept that the TEAM didnt win the game.

        I mean let’s face it. Therrien can be questioned re player deployment, especially after the penalty. Was he more distracted subconsciously than resourceful to protect the lead etc. Others had weak moments in the game.

        This public flagellation is gonna come back and bite the team. It is sports! Anyone who went out on a field or arena or whatever sporting surface knows that at what ever level… you are gonna screw up sooner than later and maybe at least 25% of the times. It is why I like Chris’ point… concentrate on execution to overcome what one would call negative momentum.

        • Old Bald Bird says:

          I think in this case at least, it was too obvious to brush aside. It’s not as though the world can’t see this for what it is.

          • habstrinifan says:

            Respectfully, you made my point. The WORLD can see it. The coach/team desn’t need to single him out. Even as I sit and type I feel angry at the optics. I hated myself (after the fact) when I did it when I played (not hockey) and when others did it.

    • Captain aHab says:

      Sure…but how many chances do you give him? He is lucky that Nokia is injured right now.

      And can you teach being bright? I’m starting to have my doubts with him.

      I think he’ll get one more shot and if he pulls another stupid reaction like last night’s, he’ll be in Hamilton until his contract runs out or he’s traded.

      —————-
      Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

    • Cal says:

      Therrien said that White was undisciplined and that it was unacceptable. Many here say that is throwing him under the bus. I think it was just telling it like it is.

      White’s 4th line minutes should not affect the games as much as they have, and it’s all on his discipline problems.

      http://calshabsongparodies.weebly.com

  60. Strummer says:

    Ott played White like a fiddle.

    I’m sure word is out now if you look at a Hab the wrong way at the right time White will become unhinged and end up with a double-miner.

    Well-played, Ott.
    ______________________________________________________
    “It’s just an opinion – I could be wrong”

  61. Old Bald Bird says:

    The team takes too many penalties in general. They took enough in the second that they were lucky not to be down already. Most are bad penalties — cheap little infractions.

    The former #1 lines looks lost. There is not much drive to the net, which should be the Pax and Cole thing. I’ve seen a number of weak shots from the wing from Pax when he could have at least tried to drive to the net. I noticed this before the op too. Another problem is that our new#1 line isn’t really a #1 line IMO.

    Having written that, I honestly didn’t expect the Habs to win that game going in, so from that standpoint, one point isn’t all that bad.

    I think except for the first period against Boston, the team has lost some of their mojo in the last four games. I think this team must fly to play their best, and they aren’t doing that so much lately.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Agree Bird, we currently are getting our best production from Plex/Gio/Bourque and that line cannot physically dominate a shift. The line of Cole/Max/DD should be able to and they are not doing so.

      I suppose what we are seeing is that this is still a developing team who can’t afford so many lapses in judgement (penalties) and still expect to win.

      Getting the single point was good, but still dissappointing when a 2 goal lead in 3rd is blown.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Do you think Cole’s preseason comments about retiring is an indication his drive no longer exsist? In my opinion his play is the biggest reason this line is performing poorly. Patches is too talented a player to leave him there. Put him with the kids and put Chuckie at center might be interesting combination.

      ———————————–

      • Old Bald Bird says:

        I am beginning to think that at his age and talent level, Patches needs to be the guy driving this line … and to some extent the team. He isn’t doing it.

        To some extent, it seems that both Cole and patch are not getting in the right position to drive. Maybe this is just the roll of the dice — where and when they are getting the puck.

  62. Bogie Man says:

    I think to blame the loss entirely on Ryan White is absolutely inaccurate. Peter Budaj looked soft on the first two goals and in the shootout. I know he has reason’s to not look sharp as he has only played 2 games thus far however a back goalie needs to be ready every game just in case he gets the call in this case he was not. So yes was it not a cool thing for White to go after Ott with a two goal lead, yes but to lay the whole loss on one player is the wromng thing to do and will pull a team apart very quickly. I have been saying for about almost 3 years now, we need a back up goalie who can go in and help us not the opposite. The comobination of undicipline play and inconsistent goaltending cost us the loss of one point last night.

    • Greg says:

      Agree. If we play that game again without Ryan White, we still could’ve lost. If we play that game again with Ryan White with Price in nets, we destroy them. It’s pretty simple to me. Maybe it’s not fair to lay this all on Budaj, but the fact is the guy got lit up.

      Also, you’re right, I can’t believe Ott didn’t drop the mitts. White can’t believe it either.

      I don’t think it was goalie interference on Budaj, but if they’re gonna be consistent with how’s they’ve been calling it so far this year… that’s an easy no-goal.

      • Bogie Man says:

        Yup considering the goal that got called back last week against Ottawa the goal scored on us late in last nights game should have a been a no brainer. I think the GM should package White, Budaj and Weber together and get in return another Dman and a solid back up. I am sure there are back ups out there that would rather sit on the Canadiens bench than the bench they are currently on.

      • H.Upmann says:

        You know whats funny? Somehow i knew Buffalo would equalize fast after our two leads… and right before overtime.

  63. Ton says:

    Cant believe the “slutty” journalism here! He baits you all and you grab it fast!

  64. HabinBurlington says:

    Of course Ott is a jerk and twit and we would all love to see him get his come uppings, but at what price? These teams play each other 3 more times this season, pick your spots.

    With a two goal lead in 3rd in a road game, it was complete brain dead move by White. At the least he should have challenged Ott and given him a chance to fight or not, thus avoiding all the penalty minutes.

    Selfish penalty under the guise of protecting his team. Other things went wrong after, but that was a foolish foolish penalty. Wouldn’t be surprised to see Michael Blunden get a phone call this morning.

    Budaj looked average, and it was keystone cops at the end of regulation. Too bad, the team played well enough to get a road win. The learning curve continues for all players and coaches.

    • CCL says:

      Ott maybe a jerk but it worked. his team won. Habs get suckered in all the time. Guys like white haven’t learned.

    • commandant says:

      You are 100% bang on about Ryan White.

      Plus he wasn’t even protecting his teammates. He was going after Ott for selfish reasons. In his post game he said that he thought Ott went low on the hit and thats why he fought him. Look if Ott was going after Plekanec, or Markov, or one of the kids, I could more easily forgive White, but he wasn’t… it was a personal thing. Thats 100% where you take the guys number, chirp at him and see if he’ll fight, and if he doesn’t drop the gloves, go after him next game.

      Budaj did look average. But a backup goalie on a cheap contract who plays behind Price (a guy expected to get 65-70 games in a normal season) its hard to attract better than average via free agency. I don’t have a problem with that.

      Go Habs Go!
      Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
      http://lastwordonsports.com/

      • scuba says:

        On the TSN Montreal broadcast it showed Ott took a bit of a run at Gionta just before White went after him. He then took an extra shot at Gionta and flexed at him like he wanted to fight. It didn’t show the whole sequence so it’s hard to say if White was trying to respond to this incident or not and it is not an excuse but it might provide more of the reason.

  65. Captain aHab says:

    For those saying it wasn’t entirely White’s fault, he himself said he cost the team a win. Sabres were showing nothing at the time of the penalty and had pretty much assumed the foetal position. Grit is one thing but he’s been totally stupid on several occasions now. If this is a meritocracy, sit his butt down or send him down. He’ll sit anyways when Nokia is back as the Habs will need someone who can win faceoffs.

    On the subject of meritocracy, I think it’s time to treat the DD line as the 3rd line until they show a pulse. Give them 12 minutes a game and no PP time. Make the kid line the number 2 line. Cole simpy doesn’t seem to care right now and Pacioretty seems much slower to me this year….here’s hoping that he didn’t overtrain and lost agility. It’s been known to happen before in sports. The other thing they could try is Prust with Cole and Pacioretty to see if there’s a spark.

    —————-
    Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

    • Cal says:

      The ice time of DD-Cole and Patches has dropped. The wingers played a little of 14 minutes, but DD (inexplicably) played almost 17 minutes.
      2 other lines are producing. It’s tough to break them up when they are doing well because 3 players aren’t doing the job. Chemistry is important, so I hope the line starts scoring. It is sorely needed.

      http://calshabsongparodies.weebly.com

    • Chris says:

      Given the tone of Therrien’s comments, I suspect White was told to be front and centre when the reporters came in and that he was responsible for the loss.

      But I actually give White credit for those comments. He’s taking the blame.

      But this deflects from the real problems with this team. For one, has there ever been an NHL team that struggles more to score empty net goals than the Montreal Canadiens? :)

  66. ogilthorpe says:

    Ok the white thing was a tough break but come on, pests like ott come in with cheap little late hits like that and then don’t drop the gloves. Cheap!!! Then buffalo player “on the bench” pushes white, last time I checked, that could be a suspension. To finish, they score with goalie interference from who else?? Ott. And the goal stands??? What about MT always talking about team but the second they lose he throws his players under the bus. Don’t step on logo in dressing room but ok to bash players publicly??? Whatever.

    • Habsman1970 says:

      Yes, of couse they are going to do that, they were down by 2 goals with 10 mins left in the game and they knew it was all but over, so why not try to lure Montreal in to a penalty… This is where WHITE needed to keep cool rather than playing right in to what Buffalo wanted.. And guess what, it worked for them too… So, saying Buffalo was cheap, I disagree, they just did what every other struggling team would do…

      Oh, and the logo in the locker room doesn’t take stupid penalties and lose a game for a team, White does…

      ONCE A HAB, FOREVER A HAB!!!

  67. CCL says:

    White cost them one goal and with a few minutes left coaching cost them the other. Having said that. The fourth line is weak in more ways than one. MB should try and fix that. The rest of the team when we consider we are in a rebuilding mode. are OK. MB do something about that fourth line …. if you can’t get players who can put up some points. get some toughness. one or two that can scrap with the best of them. Boston beats us with intimidation.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Agree about 4th line, CCL, but don’t agree Boston beats us with intimidation, certainly not last game. I sometimes worry that we make the intimidation factor a self-fulfilling prophecy when it comes to Boston. I don’t have time to check, but I think we basically own the Bruins dating back 5 seasons. We tend to remember only losing in Game 7 OT in their Daddy Campbell-assisted Cup win, and the infamous beat-down.

      Yes, they’ve enjoyed the upper-hand on us more recently. But who hasn’t?!

  68. Fansincebirth says:

    It’s totally unfair to hang this one on White. I didn’t see the play where he took the dbl minor until this morning and Ott deserved a beating for that play and others. White has a role to play on this team and he plays it well. So many HIO’ers moaned and groaned and complained about the lack of toughness this team had and White fills the role. Has he taken a few dumb penalties? Yes he has. Why the double minor last night? Why not just a single minor? Even though they scored on the PP, it DID NOT cost us the game.

    Soft goals, a few players still not showing up and a goal that should have been waved off for goalie interference is where I point my finger.

    This team is still a work in progress so I’ll give them time to grow. I’m shocked beyond belief with their performance thus far this season. MT has the team working well together but he should be bitch slapped for throwing White under the bus.

    • Cal says:

      Teams with 4-2 leads take numbers for when they are down in a future game. Ott provoked White and, like Pavlov’s dog, he responded.
      There is a fine line to walk between standing up for your teammates and not thinking at all. White needs to start thinking before putting his team in a hole.

      http://calshabsongparodies.weebly.com

    • commandant says:

      You didn’t see the play til this morning?

      So you didn’t watch the game then, just the highlights?

      Let me assure you… this is 100% on Ryan White. This game was in the bag when he changed the momentum by being stupid.

      Go Habs Go!
      Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
      http://lastwordonsports.com/

      • Greg says:

        They were still up by a goal, with the puck in the Sabres end with 9 seconds left in the game. Ryan White was on the bench…. So I don’t think it was “100% on Ryan White”.

      • Fansincebirth says:

        I watched as much of the game as I could (not the only one sitting in front of the tube) but I didn’t see the White incident until this morning. White played his part in the loss but I despise the fact that so many ‘fans’ are trying to blame him for the loss.

        How about we start spreading the blame around a little and stop trying to single out 1 player for the loss.

        • commandant says:

          When blame is deserved it gets spread out. In this instance, White (after coming back from a 3 game hiatus due to stupid penalties in the same situation vs Florida; and stupid penalties in Ottawa) is well deserving of being singled out IMO.

          Go Habs Go!
          Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
          http://lastwordonsports.com/

  69. habsfan0 says:

    Justified or not, it might be a long time before we see Budaj in the net again.

    Must win vs the Leafs tomorrow? They are 5-1 on the road this year.

  70. Habsman1970 says:

    I think a “donkey” is more appropriate than a goat for the display picture of this article… If you know what I mean..;)

    ONCE A HAB, FOREVER A HAB!!!

  71. piper says:

    They really need to do something about the officiating in this league. They are not the show. Too many games are being decided by bad calls or non calls.

  72. nychabsfan says:

    Chris the momentum of the 3rd goal(off Whites penalty)gave the Sabres momentum .The habs were bagged from the Boston game and there was absolutely no reason for this brainless penalty ,everything shifted after that penalty ,this L is on him,just like the Ottawa 5-1 drubbing.This guy is not the sharpest tool in the shed…..
    nychabshan

    • Chris says:

      Momentum is a red herring.

      A hockey team can not have momentum. If you give up a goal, get up, dust yourself off, and go back to doing what had “momentum” on your side in the first place. Montreal sat back when it got to 4-3 and let the Sabres come at them. The funny thing is that Bourque and Gionta had just finished a great shift where they kept huge pressure on the Sabres in their own end.

      If the referees did their job (is anybody legitimately trying to tell me that the referees didn’t lose sight of THAT puck at the end or that Steve Ott didn’t interfere with Budaj), we’re talking about White as being a bit of an idiot but no harm done. Instead, he’s the goat for the loss. I don’t buy it.

      The team had 12 minutes to get their legs under them after the goal. That is an eternity in hockey.

      • Cal says:

        Teams don’t have momentum. Games do. Last night’s 3rd period PP goal gave the Sabres life, and rang alarm bells on the Habs’ side. You could see the game shift right there.

      • commandant says:

        Chris, I have to respectfully disagree 100% here. There is absolutely momentum in a hockey game. Benches build on a good shift or a goal by their teammates…. give a push, pour on the pressure.

        In a playoff series is their momentum game to game as some want us to believe? Probably not, when you have a day or two to regroup its different. But when its mere seconds between shifts and the adrenaline is flowing, momentum matters.

        Go Habs Go!
        Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
        http://lastwordonsports.com/

        • Chris says:

          Again, I couldn’t disagree more. Momentum is an excuse.

          Each shift is a game within a game. What we call momentum is the acuumulation of shift “losses”.

          Think about what we’re claiming here. One team, the one with momentum, is sitting on the bench and they “know” that they have momentum on their side.

          The other team knows that they don’t have momentum so they just have to weather the storm? I think that is BS. Go out and dominate the next shift. If you are the better players and work harder, momentum is largely irrelevant.

          If anything Montreal had momentum just before the tying goal. Bourque and Gionta were masterful on the shift immediately prior to the faceoff, forcing the Sabres back into their own zone repeatedly.

          Buffalo scored because Montreal had a defensive breakdown, and White hadn’t been on the ice for 12 minutes.

          Montreal had defensive breakdowns immediately after each of their first two goals as well, times when they should have had momentum.

          The Canadiens are a work in progress. They will suffer these kinds of issues. But arguments centred around that the game was out of their hands, that the other team was taking it to them because of momentum, are completely bogus.

      • habstrinifan says:

        I get your point Chris. I think you are more accurately saying that momentum, negative(against you) or positive (a team stimulus from a shared rush of adrenalin provided by one occurrence on the ice…including a bad call)… should NOT be allowed to overwhelm decision making and execution. And I totally agree.

        It is at those times, when you have to fight against the lethargy of negative momentum or reign in reckless abandon from positive momentum that your coach and team leadership must MANAGE the game.

        Habs need that factor! Or they will be victim of momentum again and again.

        • Chris says:

          Even though I think it is a red herring, momentum can probably be justified for a few minutes after an event.

          But I simply don’t buy that such a thing would persist for 20 minutes through ~10-15 shifts. And if it is, then isn’t the role of the coach to call a timeout and get the team sorted out?

          I don’t deny that White was an idiot last night. I deny that it cost the team the game. This absolves everybody else, including Michel Therrien, of their own responsibilities. Good on White for accepting that blame, bad on Therrien for accepting the dodge.

  73. Greg says:

    I don’t care how many shots he faced. Budaj did not look good to me last night.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      I agree in part. But would you agree that after fighting the puck early he looked better later?

      Do you think he cost us the W?

      Given he’s the back-up we have, would you agree that there was value to be gained from putting him in?

      • Greg says:

        I guess he got better as the game went on. Do I think he cost us the win… If you mean, do I think we would’ve won if Carey Price were in net? Yes I do.

        The only value gained from playing Budaj is to rest Price. Letting in 5 goals vs Ottawa is one thing. But Buffalo is terrible. If he can’t grab a few wins against teams like Buffalo when his team gives him 4 goals and 3 leads in the game… maybe we explore other options such as Cedric Desjardins. Is he injured BTW?

        • commandant says:

          Desjardins isn’t injured, but he’s been well below expectations in Hamilton. He’s not a top AHL goalie and has done little to show he’d be better than Budaj.

          Go Habs Go!
          Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
          http://lastwordonsports.com/

          • Greg says:

            hmmm. Bummer. Mayer’s no option… Give him some time to find his game i suppose, but last night was MUST win.

  74. mal2478 says:

    They drop off White in Hamilton on their way home?

  75. Chris says:

    White cost the team one goal. Not two.

    Was the game in control? Perhaps.

    But this team has shown a penchant for giving up goals in the second half of the game. Montreal has outscored their opposition 11-5 in the first period and 13-9 in the second period. By the third period, they start to fall apart (outscored 9-6).

    This was a recurring issue last season as well. For some reason, they run out of gas or take their foot off the pedal or have mental breakdowns.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Residual side-effects from the JM era?

    • Marcusman says:

      Was all about momentum and hope for the Sabres after that….done by one they were encouraged to pour it on. Down by two they simply don’t have that spark.

      Was a stupid move and after more than 1/5 of the season the 4th line needs an overhaul.

      Once Nokelaine is healthy put him in between Dumont and Blunden.

    • Habsman1970 says:

      Disagree, White did cost both goals as the stupid penalty he took got Buffalo back in to it, which in-turn helped on the 4th. People need to look at the whole picture and not just “right then”. As like what the write-up says above, we are not a strong enough team to have crap like that happen and still win.

      So, in a nutshell, the weak link in a chain…. Well, you know the rest…

      ONCE A HAB, FOREVER A HAB!!!

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Its called momentum Chris, the bone headed penalty (and I love Whitey) gave Buffalo the belief in coming back and winning.

      Yes the team gave up a ridiculous goal in final second, but that penalty was cause and provided dramatic effect.

      • Chris says:

        Let’s just say that I don’t believe in momentum. That is the biggest excuse in all of professional sports.

        If a team has momentum, it is because they are out-playing their opponent. By definition, it is something that can be destroyed by just going out and having a good shift on your next one.

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          That’s a massive topic, Chris! Collective psychology, perhaps? Curse work! Can’t engage!
          Cheers

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Yah okay, well I won’t even begin to get into that discussion over a computer. I don’t pretend to have a PHd in anything, especially the specifity of momentum. But having played sports all my life and some at fairly high levels, I have an understanding of what I think momentum is.

          Can it be stopped? Yes, but this is a growing team, and they don’t have the depth and talent yet to produce shutdown shifts in their back pocket. And therefore momentum continues to roll. But hey, this is just my opinion.

          • Chris says:

            It has nothing to do with a PhD, and I have also played sports all my life. I have never had anything but contempt for teammates that resort to discussions about momentum during games.

            I have no problem losing a game. I have no problem conceding that I was outplayed when it happens. I have a huge problem with people claiming that it is inevitable, which is pretty much the way people use the momentum term.

  76. montrealtilldeath says:

    Totally agree. The refs blew the White call. Ott had to get at least 2 min. As for his use of PK I suspect the other teams are very happy with MT in not using PK at key times like the end of regulation time. PK is a player who has another gear at key times and he energizes the team. We got pushed around on the tying goal. Josh and PK were amazing last year in these situations.

  77. Ian Cobb says:

    I suggest that you never play him again in Mtl.

  78. commandant says:

    The Refs ALWAYS get the retaliation. Always!

    Has been that way since the first hockey game was played.

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
    http://lastwordonsports.com/

  79. Old Bald Bird says:

    There are infractions that can be ignored, but they couldn’t ignore White’s act. I don’t think he’ll do it again, and I hope he gets another chance … after spending some time in purgatory.

  80. Strummer says:

    Agreed. White has NO offensive capability.
    DD and Cole are under-performing But I wouldn’t punish them that severely by putting White on their line.

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

  81. Habsrule1 says:

    Price sux in shootots too.
    This loss may be on a few players, but Budaj is not one of them.

    Go Habs Go!!

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

  82. commandant says:

    3 games in 4 nights

    A back to back including travel and customs.

    The third straight back to back

    You really think a goalie should play every game? What goalie does?

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports
    http://lastwordonsports.com/

  83. K-hab25 says:

    Price had one bad year in the shoot out, but I agree it wasn’t on Budaj. Atleast not as much as it is White.

  84. Timo says:

    They had a chance to get Timmy T :)

  85. K-hab25 says:

    Wins and Losses are a team accomplishment.

  86. Mustang says:

    It’s always easy to blame the goalie, especially from an armchair.

  87. Hobie Hansen says:

    White, who I love, did the same thing last year on a couple of occasions. He needs to settle down out there. I agree with you about his chances of winning drop 50% if he doesn’t jump the opponent. I think that’s why he does it too.

  88. boing007 says:

    Every point counts.

    Richard R
    Price is an oyster. Unfortunately not all oysters produce pearls.


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