About last night …


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 …



  1. J_P says:

    I think this whole blaming the entire loss on Ryan White is ridiculous. Did he take a bonehead, absolutely. Does he deserve to sit another couple of games in the press box? Absolutely. However, if any one of his teammates blames that loss on him, they need to take a look in the mirror. Only losers make excuses like that.

    The tying goal should have never counted, but that aside, the TEAM didn’t have to let it be that close. The TEAM didnt have to allow buffalo a powerplay goal.

    We’re also terrible in shootouts. Maybe the TEAM should do something about that.

  2. Welks says:

    Just a thought here. Will the dd line having their best performance with Eller on the wing. Would you try… Eller dd cole and then patches chucky galley. With prust centring the fourth line. That would be three nasty lines in my opinion.

    • J_P says:

      I like your thought a lot actually. Bottom line is I think the kids need and deserve more minutes. They bring speed and enthusiam. I know therrien is trying to bring them along slowly, but if you’re going to preach that players need to earn their ice time, they’ve definitely earned more ice time in my opinion. Gallagher and Galchenyuk are used to playing over 15 minutes a game, I cant even believe they are still doing so well getting around only 10 minutes.

  3. EricInStL says:

    Ryan White will not finish out the year with the Habs.

    His place was taken by Prust.

  4. Phil C says:


    Looks like White is sitting tomorrow. I’m not surprised. He’ll learn from it and be a better player for it. Therrien will eventually have to play him again.

    • HabfaninTO says:

      The crowd in Buffalo was 50% Canadiens fans the Sabres were dead the arena (Hab fans aside) were dead…..Ryan White was brain dead.
      I am sorry but regardless of your age the fact is you are still a professional hockey player, have played hockey for two-thirds of your life and you can’t recognize when the building is dead and your opponent has all but given up????… and you still get sucked in by one of the most notorious guys in the league.
      Peter (AHL calibre)Budaj aside Ryan White took a major step backwards IMO….can he learn to play on the edge without costing his team?…absolutely but given the circumstances of this shortened season he IMO is sitting for a long while…which unfortunately is too bad.
      ..another thing Habs need a veteran goalie of a higher calibre…no way can you trust a tender like Budaj in a season like this …back to back first shots going through the wickets in a crucial game on the road….BRUTAL!!!!!!

      • shootdapuck says:

        The BU goaltending has been neglected for two seasons now!

        Budaj was dumped by Colorado in 2011 W15 L21 !

        Weak glove, 5 hole the size of the Ville Marie Tunnel and poor or non-existant rebound control!

        Surely there is a logical reason he is still playing in the NHL it can’t be his stellar results! It’s ludicrous to repeatedly hear how hard he works in practice but subsequently can’t stop a beachball in games!

        Can Price be behind his continued tenure or is he sleeper left behind by Goatier to enhance his(Goatiers’) Montreal legacy?

        Why isn’t anyone else in the system an optiont?

        Seriously, Budaj makes Big and Bald Alex Auld seem desireable!

        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”

  5. cynic says:

    The best way to enjoy the Habs is to watch only the first 2 periods and go to bed happy

  6. Danno says:

    I love the scrappy dog that is Ryan White and am willing to forgive him for his sins. He just needs a little adjustment. Maybe Therien can turn him into a better person…


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

    • showey47 says:

      Ryan’s heart was in the right place,but his brain wasn’t. He needs to learn to pick his spots if he is going to go pugilistic on somebody in response to a hit. He also had to learn to identify who he is challenging and make sure his opponent is going to drop the mits also. So he at least takes the opposing player with him. He’ll be back,just might have to wait for an injury.

  7. commandant says:

    Nathan MacKinnon hurt his leg… Unknown how bad… Questionable to return.

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

  8. MikeHabs says:

    How do people grade the forward lines so far this year?
    Bryen Owen does it here but I wonder if people agree/disagree and why: http://allaboutthehabs.ca/687/

    twitter: @Mike_Habs

  9. Danno says:

    What’s on Michele Therien’s menu?

    Maybe it’s goats head soup?


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

  10. bell center madness says:

    Lol ya Hobie i might of been a little rude. I guess sometimes i speak my mind a little to much.

  11. Hobie Hansen says:

    People are mentioning our backup situation below and how we should target a backup to Price in the draft. I’m not really sure we need to do that at this point. Price is going to be around for another decade. I don’t think you draft a goalie for backup purposes?

    I think the backup roll is best filled via the free agent market or through a trade. Once Price is in his early 30s, then start looking at drafting a starter.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      If in a year like this upcoming one where we have quite a few draft picks it seems to me that it would be a good time to try and draft a good young goalie.

      If indeed we get a good one we have a good young goalie in about 2-3 years as a backup. If this goalie becomes so good that he is challenging Price well then a decision is made. As the team improves the next few years winning each game becomes more important. Seems to me have a quality backup is important, I don’t dislike Budaj, but I it doesn’t look like he has the sharpness he had as a starter back in Colorado.

      Truthfully speaking I think getting a player like Reimer as a backup would be good. Good younger goalie, great attitude and not quite good enough to really challenge for number but good enough to help win games when he plays. Problem is, he now has a pretty big caphit for a backup.

      • commandant says:

        Draft an 18 year old today as a project…. 2 years of Junior, 2 years of AHL seasoning… its 4 years before he even is playing backup to Price.

        The issue is we have absolutely 0 depth in the system at goalie… None.

        And hey if that 3rd/4th round pick becomes more than a backup, and has starter potential… and gets stuck behind Price… you can trade him for more at that point (better than a 3rd or 4th)

        Go Habs Go!
        Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        I guess healthy competiton in the crease is never a bad thing, unless you live in Vancouver ;-).

        And I’d love to see the angry reaction of a Leafs fan after suggesting Reimer as Price’s backup.

        • TorontoHabsFan says:

          I dunno, it seems to me that Price is not a goalie who thrives when he’s challenged for his job. Who knows to what degree, but I’d say that at least some of his struggles when Halak was on the team could be attributed to that. It doesn’t seem to be a coincidence that his strong play returned once Halak was traded and Auld replaced him.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            I see your point, but lets say we draft a goalie, hit a home run and he is ready to compete for spot in 3-4 years. Price will be a very mature veteran by then. He was a kid during the Halak vs Price days. I would love for us to have the problem of 2 goalies again, when one of them is long tenured seasoned veteran.

          • TorontoHabsFan says:

            Oh I agree agree with you on that point. Draft a kid that’s years away. Hopefully.


    • K-hab25 says:

      Usually I agree with you Hobie, but we definitely need to add a young talent to the weak goalkeepers we have in the minors. Price could suffer a major injury anytime, we need better depth.

  12. bell center madness says:

    I say boone or hockey inside out if you can write these articles. Then have the balls and be a man when someone knocks your article. I see my post was taken off. I guess the truth hurts;)

  13. commandant says:

    After MacKinnon made a great play to set up Frk for a 2-0 lead, its been all Moncton 3-2

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

  14. bell center madness says:

    Sorry if offended anyone. I have a rough day. Plus i hate it when coaches throw guys under a boss on tv. It should be left in the dressing room. Ryan white feels like shit today for sure.

  15. Hobie Hansen says:

    I don’t mind Therrien saying White’s actions were unacceptable, very minor in my opinion. However, I was confused that there was no timeout as well, especially with the team losing focus for a couple shifts at key moments lately.

  16. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …You certainly weren’t very polite about it BCM, but You are correct 🙂

  17. commandant says:


    On Desjardins, he’s been terrible this season, a huge disappointment for the Dogs, and one of the reasons their record is as bad as it is.

    I think MB’s thinking was, “we have a very young team, give them a top notch AHL goalie, and let them develop”. Well it hasn’t worked.

    In all honesty, Robert Mayer has outplayed Desjardins, and Mayer is a guy I don’t really like either.

    Now I’m not watching tonight (I’ve got Mooseheads vs Moncton on)… but my twitter feed tells me Desjardins has given up two weak ones tonight.

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

  18. Mavid says:

    The picture is a joke..i think its pretty funny actually I chuckle every time I see it..

  19. FlyAngler says:

    For all who have been critical of MT’s shootout selections last night, check out last year’s Habs shootout stats. Gionta and Bourque were nos. 1 and 2 at 50%. DD was third at 41%. I was dubious about the selections myself but the data shows that the guy went by the data having done his homework. You can’t fault him for that and Galchenyuk scored on his attempt.

    “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

  20. commandant says:

    @Habitant in Surrey

    A defence callup from Hamilton would likely be Frederic St. Denis… maybe Tinordi if it was very short term. Pateryn recently returned, but missed 30+ games with the broken elbow, so he’s still getting up to speed.


    Gionta has 20 Career Shootout Goals, the next closest hab has 8.
    Gionta is 5th on the team in career shooting percentage (4th before last night)… those ahead of him, Kaberle, Desharnais, Colby Armstrong (only 2/3), and Galchenyuk (1/1)

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

    • Stuck_in_To. says:

      Thanks for setting me straight. I am back on the MT bandwagon! 🙂

    • Habitant in Surrey says:

      …though I like St Denis, He is not the physical guy We need

      …so I guess You are saying Tinordi may be up sooner than We anticipated, or We trade Our excess ‘grit’ + Weber for that type of D-man

      • commandant says:

        I think as a full-time defenceman Tinordi is probably not ready before next season, and more likely would be around this time next season. Plus like most rookies (especially big guys like him), he is likely to struggle at first until he gets up to NHL speed.

        I could see him play a game or two this year if injuries hit, but I don’t see him as a solution for a bit.

        I wanted Bryan Allen too.

        MB recognizes the issue though, he tried to fix it with Commodore, but he’s lost a step and couldn’t do it.

        Not sure what the short term answer is here… Fistric when he went to Edmonton would have been nice.

        Go Habs Go!
        Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

  21. habstrinifan says:

    Please new thread… the picture is neither flattering to White nor becoming to the site.

  22. Stuck_in_To. says:

    It is obvious that nobody feels worse today than White. Sitting out a game and this intense scrutiny are probably enough to send a message to the young man.

    Seems most of HIO missed him last year and welcomed him this year. He can learn to be smarter.

    Budjai, as Commandant pointed out, is not that bad for his contract and position behind Price. He also played a fair game last night.

    If our forwards cashed their chances, even the PPG on the White penalty probably doesn’t inspire Buffalo.

    For that matter, once the game is in the SO … do you really send Gionta against Miller? Granted, Miller has had a terrible start to the year, but he is an elite goalie and probably knows the main players inside out.

    If you want to count MT’s coaching gaffs, I think that might be one. Uninspired shootout roster.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I understand your thoughts in regards to White but what bothers me is this was the second similar instance in one weeks time. Not something a 4th liner who gets limited icetime can afford to do. He should have learned from the first instance. Hopefully like a lot of us he’s a slow learner and needed that second one to confirm the lesson he should have gotten from the first one. He handled last night with class and appears contrite. Since he still wears the sweater I will be rooting for him.


      • HabinBurlington says:

        If he is as slow learner as you and me Jim, he could be in trouble. 🙂

      • Stuck_in_To. says:

        I understand everyone’s disappointment in his play. I am expecting that time out for the injury last year, the new coach and system and lockout layoff … well, everyone gets their timing back at different rates and White might just have got his back.

        That or I eat these words the next time he is in the lineup.

  23. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …agree, though, with those saying We need a huge lumberjack D-man capable of physically clearing the crease in these last-minute situations …it was embarrassing how easily the Sabres walked into the crease with powder-puff resistance

    …@Commandant …is Greg Pateryn the likely guy in Hamilton (as Tinordi, I hear, needs more seasoning) …how close is Pateryn, if at all ?

    …and, if We don’t have anyone ready yet, there must be some veteran big-galoot out there with enough left to be a # 8 D physical beast

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Interesting, this big defenceman taken 2 picks before we drafted he who shall not be mentioned in 2007 with pick #12 just got traded for a 5th round pick. Keaton Ellerby 6’4 220lbs

      A top 10 draft choice for 5th round.

    • Mark C says:

      Haven’t seen either play live recently, however, I don’t think anyone has Pateryn ahead of Tinordi in terms of reaching the NHL.

      Sounds like you should be following Samuel Morin and Jonathan Diaby in the Q for this year’s draft.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      There’s a couple of big boys who are partly responsible for helping the Ducks to a 7-1-1 start by the names of Bryan Allen and Sheldon Souray. Both were available over the summer and have been know to clear a crease in their day. Not sure why we ended up with Frankie Boullion instead?

      Souray is also 2nd in the league in goals by a defenseman and 3rd in plus/minus with a plus 7 rating.

      I guess the Goat leaving us with Kaberle’s $4.5 million cap hit didn’t leave Bergevin too much room for improvement in that area?

      We’ll have to be patient and wait for Tinordi. Maybe if we’re looking good at the deadline and a couple months away from ridding ourselves of Kaberle, Bergevin will make some sort of move.

    • bigjames says:

      we had such a lumberjack… the last man to wear number 3. then he potted a horrible own goal and was never the same….

  24. Hobie Hansen says:

    Therrien get fired yet?

  25. Ian Cobb says:

    Therrien has sent White and Armstrong to this team for balance and discipline. They leave after the snow storm is over.

  26. TorontoHabsFan says:

    Random question:

    Anybody know a good knock-off jersey site?

  27. Rick0744 says:

    Coach preaches disciplined team game – White needs an object lesson – send him to Hamilton for a couple of weeks. He gets ice time and time to think about stupidity that has likely led to two Hab losses.

  28. Max says:

    Why didn’t that Sabres idiot on the bench get a penalty for grabbing at White and getting involved in the play from the bench?

    • sevenman says:

      Because the officiating in the NHL on a lot of nights is a joke…see the Sabres fourth goal

      • JohnBellyful says:

        Once again, NHL referees are under fire for being incompetent, last night’s tying goal against Montreal being the latest example.
        Maybe it’s time the league outsourced officiating. Turn the job over to third parties who have met universal standards for quality assurance as developed by the International Consortium of Excellent Officials, better known as ICE-O.
        ICE-O 9000 is utilized in 17 countries around the world and 114 industrial hockey leagues in North America. Anecdotal evidence and comprehensive fan surveys show a significant decline in “dumb”, “freakin’ stupid”, “gimme a break” and “what, are you kiddin’ me, you blind %$^#@$” calls by ICE-O certified referees.
        A handful of contractors have emerged as top-flight providers of officials who are knowledgeable, experienced and even-handed, and have gained the utmost respect from players, coaches and fans alike.
        The biggest firm, Zal’s Zebras, handled 231,092 games last year – and received boos in only 1.3 per cent of the matches.
        The next largest company, Stars in Stripes (“We’re More Than Pretty Good, We’re Terreffic!”), once went three games without having any of its officials’ calls questioned by a disbelieving athlete.
        Having in-house personnel make judgment calls on others whose source of pay comes from the same pocket can lead to widespread feelings of resentment, and in many cases, a suspicion of bias.
        True impartiality can only be achieved by placing enforcement of the rules in the hands of individuals with no other interest than to see the game played as it should be.
        This may be the clincher, though: They wouldn’t open emails from Colin Campbell.
        Outsourcing has been proven to work in manufacturing, call centres, newspaper ad production, and military operations.
        What’s holding back the NHL?

    • Sportfan says:

      Cause the NHL refs suck and took an extended off season

  29. Timo says:

    So, Habs bring back Halak as Price’s backup – yes?

  30. CHicoHab says:

    I still like Whitey in our line up.
    If Ott fights back everything’s even. Who’d have thought he’d just stand there like a punching bag. And with ten seconds left when the Sabres crossed our blue line that’s where we should be slashing and hacking stop the play. Too passive and too gentlemanly. Banning the low five is MT’s contribution so far. He’s starting to bug me.

    • piper says:

      Yep…he’ll how to deal with those rats from now on. What bugs me is the way MT was so proud of him for jumping Fleishman then throwing him under the bus for that. But Habs won that game so no need to find a goat.

    • sevenman says:

      Exactly, leave Whitey alone… it’s about time this team has a player with a little fire….now let’s talk about this Armstrong guy…

  31. Habitant in Surrey says:

    Jcc10, except for rebound control, Budaj played a very strong game ,,,making countless exceptional first saves

    …there was a lot of blame to go around for the tying goal, including a non-call by the Three Blind Mice

    …and, as for the shoot-out, how many times has Carey looked pathetic in the shoot-out

    …Your beat-down of Budaj’s play in this particular game is full of bollocks

    • commandant says:

      40 shots against

      7 PPs against (one of which was a 5 on 3).

      He’s a backup goalie…. and yes, he’s one of the weaker backups in the league, but you aren’t going to get a top notch backup as a UFA when you

      1) offer a small contract for cap reasons.
      2) have a starter who we know is gonna play 65-75 games a year.

      All that said, Budaj played well enough to win this game.

      Go Habs Go!0
      Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

      • HabinBurlington says:

        But it does make one wonder if this upcoming draft is time to use a 2nd round pick on a goalie. Would be good to have a young up and comer, not an old down and leaving goalie.

        • commandant says:

          I don’t know that it needs to be a second rounder… it could be a third or fourth… but yes we need a goalie prospect.

          I’d also consider signing a college kid. One of Parker Milner, Frank Slubowski, Troy Grosenick, Andy Ilse; or someone out of Europe.

          Stick the College/Europe kid in Hamilton for 1-2 years and then he backs up price.

          The drafted kid has 2 years in junior before he joins Hamilton anyway, so you wouldn’t be blocking his way either

          Go Habs Go!
          Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

    • Habfan10912 says:

      HiS when I spoke to a gentleman from the Dogs front office prior to the season he bragged about Cedrick Desjardins and how great ge looked during practice. I’m not sure that’s translated to his play this season. I wonder if Ben could give us an opinion on his potential as a NHL backup?


      • Habitant in Surrey says:

        …this has been something that has been curious to Me as well Jim for the last few years …why They haven’t felt Desjardins would be an ideal back-up to Price …Cedric has excelled in the AHL every year I have followed Him

        …despite Desjardins’ great work the Hamilton Coach keeps giving Mayer the majority of games …something They know We don’t ?

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