About last night …

PopeMikeI

Pope Michel I?
Hey, why not?
Through the first third of this short NHL season, Michel Therrien definitely has the infallibility thing going.
Seriously, name one wrong move Therrien has made in coaching your Montreal Canadiens to a position in the standings 14 spots higher than where they finished last season.

Exhibit A: Lars Eller. A healthy scratch for the second and third games of the season, Eller has been excellent – playing on the wing and at centre, in all situations, in all three zones, with a variety of linemates.

Exhibit B: Ryan White. Called out by Therrien after a series of brain-dead penalties, White spent seven games in the pressbox and did not get back into the lineup until Brendan Gallagher was concussed by Luke Schenn on Saturday. So did you notice who was taking – and winning – a defensive zone faceoff with Henrik Lundqvist on the bench and six Rangers skaters looking for the tying goal?

Exhibit C: Raphael Diaz. Opening night against Toronto, the Swiss sophomore played 14:49. Against the Rangers: 21:58 – more than Andrei Markov, more than P.K. Subban, more than Josh Gorges.  And who was on the ice  to protect that slim lead and score an insurance goal?

Answer me this, peeps: Where did you have Raphael Diaz on the Canadiens depth chart before the season began? And where is he now?

Why did Diaz top the ToI chart, including 2:47 when the Canadiens were shorthanded?

Because Michel Therrien coaches a meritocracy. Play well and you play a lot.

But the coach is not rigid.

Play not so well, and Therrien will give you time to get your stuff together. See DESHARNAIS, David.

Plus this:  Therrien’s careful spoonfeeding of ice time to Alex Galchenyuk and Brendan Gallagher. And his deployment of surprisingly versatile Brandon Prust (plus-3 against his old team) as their protector.

And this: P.K. Subban is less flamboyant, more effective.

If Jack Adams Trophy voting were held today, Therrien would definitely be part of the conversation. And that may be the case when the real voting happens, a ways down the road.

 

Are your Canadiens an all-conquering juggernaut?

Of course not – as evidenced by 40 minutes during which it was only necessary to Zamboni the end of  MSG ice defended by a team being forechecked to death. But the beleaguered Canadiens – who didn’t get a shot on goal until the game was 16 minutes old and were held shotless for an eight-minute stretch of the second period – hung in and played rope-a-dope.

And despite playing their second game in as many nights, the Canadiens picked up their pace in the third period to bag two more unlikely points.

The team doesn’t quit. They battle, they play a sound defensive system in front of a great goaltender (and his backup), they’re disciplined (two minor penalties, despite chasing the puck for long stretches of a tough game in New York).

Unlike too many teams of  too many recent seasons, this edition of the Canadiens has character. And that’s a tribute to the coach and his staff.

There are 32 games to go. And let’s be honest: a Canadiens collapse is not inconceivable.

But the only NHL teams with more wins than the Canadiens’ 11 are mighty Chicago and surprising Anaheim. The team is halfway through a killer portion of its schedule – six games in eight nights – and they’ve won all three and five in a row, dating back to the Florida trip.

Beginning next Monday, the Canadiens will play 11 of 15 games on the road. It will be difficult, probably impossible, to maintain a pace that has them 4-1-1 away from the Bell Centre.

Injuries will happen. Key players will have off-nights.

In an interview during an English Premier League soccer telecast this week, Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson said in any given game, he didn’t expect more than eight of his players to perform well. The key to success, Lord Ferg added, is to a system and players who can rally and pick up the slack for guys who are having off-games.

The Canadiens have that esprit de corps going. With the exception of Tomas Plekanec, everyone on the team has had bad nights. Some have had many.  I’m looking at you, Erik Cole.

But with the exception of the Leaf Lashing, we haven’t seen a game in which the whole squad sucked. Someone always seems to take up the slack. And their readiness to rally is a tribute to that guy behind the bench.

But I don’t think we’ll see Therrien in papal vestments … not after what happened when he wore the mustard-coloured jacket for a playoff game.

• Hey, check out this honey of a goal by Pavel Datsyuk, who shakes off a forecheck and goes end-to-end:

 

662 Comments

  1. Propwash says:

    Why give anything up for O’Reilly, just pitch an offer sheet. He is an rfa anyway.

    ____________________
    DOOOOOOOOOOOOMED!

  2. habs001 says:

    This season being unique(48 games,no western opponents and so far many teams that were supposed to be playoff teams not playing well)…If at the trade deadline the Habs position is the same as today would they add a couple of rental players to go for a cup run but give up some future prospects…The Habs have a lot of future prospects but most are a couple of years away..The Habs roster right now only has about 6 players below 25 so a potential opportunity that may be available because of the shortened season has to be considered….

  3. PrimeTime says:

    More Hab fans should realize this js reality sports, not fantasy sports.

  4. habsfannfld says:

    I love how about half the posters on this site are running Cole out of town already. How quickly we forget. People talk about the French language barrier and taxes, as reasons why we have a hard time attracting players. Maybe it’s because of fans like this who will run you out of town after a 5-10 game slump. The team is 11-4-1. Sometimes it’s ok to enjoy things in life, instead of focusing on the negative. Think of where we can go if DD, Cole and Patches get on track.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      First! these players do not read HIO or listen to the fans, they know they are like leaves on a tree! blow one way and then the other!

      • habsfannfld says:

        I’m well aware players don’t read HIO. But Cole is historically a slow starter. So why are we expecting different this year? Because the team is off to a good start? My point is that the team is playing well, so let Cole find his game, because we’ll need him in the months to come. I don’t want to see a big, fast, offensive player run out of town because of a slow start. Especially when we’re off to a great start.

    • savethepuck says:

      The trade Cole rally is definitely ridiculous. Montreal is definitely not a place where a player is allowed to have a bad month. There can be so many reasons that he’s not playing well. Maybe a lingering injury that he’s playing through. He’s a notorious slow starter, add to that a short training camp, and he may be taking longer to get his game legs. Maybe it’s just confidence, and he is just holding his stick too tight. He needs time to work out things better something drastic like a trade is done. I have no problem with moving him around to the line-up, limiting ice time etc… until he gets going. It’s way too early to be talking trade.
      IMO, Rene Bourque sucked for basically 3 months last year, and appears to be great now. Glad we didn’t jump the gun and trade his sorry a$$ out of town.

      “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
      Carey Price

  5. Loonie says:

    All I’m going to say about a potential O’Reilly addition is that with the kind of package Colorado’s asking in return and given the consideration toward how much money O’Reilly allegedly wants, I’d be more inclined to trade for an available elite player. Not one who comes with huge contract demands and shows modest offensive ability.

    Go get a Marleau for a good roster player and a notable prospect. Not an O’Reilly.

  6. B says:

    Buffalo puts a big body (McCormick) on waivers, cue all the posts about how Montreal has to claim him.

    –Go Habs Go!–

    • habsfannfld says:

      Don’t forget Matt Kassian, who would have solved all of our size problems

    • Ian Cobb says:

      Cody McCormick was a Belleville Bull when he was in junior, and I know him personally and his career quite well. He is a solid kid, (no longer a kid) he knows the game and plays the game every shift.
      He is not the best skater out there and I feel the game has just about left him behind now. I do not know why we would want him.
      I would take Darche first! but what do I know.

  7. chanchilla says:

    this site is worse than tsn today. Why would we need another center in oreilly? we’re first in the east…enjoy it..

  8. Sportfan says:

    Torts thought lastnight was one of the worst games he’s ever been in haha

    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  9. Lafleurguy says:

    Interesting that when Rick Nash went down, Brandon Mashinter was ready, willing, able, and used by Tortapaella. Was Jeff Halpern on the ice for the Rangers?

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  10. Sportfan says:

    Ah nothing like being on a winning streak on a day off then losing and have days before the next game and hearing what the team is doing wrong and who should lose there Job haha

    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  11. calvee123 says:

    When I look back on the season so far, I see only the two games played against the Maple leafs as the only two games where they deserved to lose. Game 1 the Canadiens were not ready to play and that blow out. They should have beaten both Buffalo and Boston. So in my mind they are right where they should be.

    As the season goes on I see them beating Boston and Toronto. Especially if they play to their full potential. I’m very happy to see them atop of the east, and third in the whole NHL. I never seen this coming…. Keep it up Habs!!

    • Trisomy 21 says:

      I disagree that MTL should have beaten Boston. The Habs scored first but that doesn’t mean they deserve to win. I thought Boston outplayed Montreal, as goes for the first game against Ottawa. Maybe they could won against Buffalo, but when you play the 3rd period ahead by two on your heals, I think you deserve to have them tie it up. We can’t start making the Canadiens out to be a better team than they are.

  12. HardHabits says:

    The poll question is:

    1)

    Do you think the Canadiens can finish the season in first place in the Eastern Conference?

    not:

    2)

    Do you think the Canadiens will finish the season in first place in the Eastern Conference?

    I voted Yes to question #1! If the question was worded as #2 is, I would have been tempted to vote No!

  13. Xkhann says:

    canadiens should make an offer to Colorado for Cole and Dietz for orielly. Thing with Cole is if he retires while still under contract his cap hit is off the books right, so maybe dd could also work and use ror as a winger when and if Cole retires? I like Dietz alot but he may be expendable given the girth of defenseman in the farm. Morgan ellis would be preferable but I think Colorado would rather have Dietz. for cap reasons I think Cole makes sense and I’m a huge fan of dd but with our situation at center and the size of our forwards plus dds pending contact status he’d be better served and given the opportunity to flourish in Colorado plus they seem to like our prospects.

    • mark-ID says:

      Xkhann, that trade doesnt make sense for a couple of reasons.

      1) Cole has a no trade clause…at this point in his career, I can’t see him packing up his family again and move out West. Plus this team is doing great…why would he want to go to Colorado.

      2) O’Reilly either wants crazy money, or crazy term or both. Bergevin made it clear with Subban signing that he isn’t willing to give either to a player coming out of entry level.

      This team is playing great….no need to mess with success at moment/

      “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

      • Trisomy 21 says:

        you’re right that those will stop the trade from happening. But #2 is the biggest reason I wouldn’t want them to make the trade. Worst thing to happen would be to get the guy’s rights in MTL only to find we can’t sign him either.

      • CanadienBoy says:

        O’Reilly want to munch money yes ,but he is a long term solution at center and leadership yes, better then DD i think so ,Ottawa think so as well why trade for old guys went u can this guy 22or 23 he is ,DD ,Webber on a pre approve contract thrown a pick if needed and not Diaz because his better the Strait

    • habsfannfld says:

      Wouldn’t make sense to bring in O’Reilly and pay him 5+ mil to play on the wing. DD or Eller would have to go in the deal and they would have to be willing to take on a contract like Kaberle for the $ to make sense. Either way this will not happen. MB won’t take on a contract like that

  14. krob1000 says:

    We’ll have to agree to disagree on that goal Tom…I liken it to blaming the poor guy one 3 on 1 that Galchenyuk scored on for not stopping that pass across. His d partner was nowhere to be found…and then Callahan skated past the drop pass and off to the boards…but the lone dman who was trying his best got made to look foolish (like Bouillon did not execute…but at least was around to try). I see many similarities in the two goals…and the poor defense..the difference between Bouillon’s was he had Cole …..had he stayed on his post as you suggest then the Ranger would have walked out front…only chances was for Bouillon to stop pass and/or have COle take away that guys stick. Worst part about it wasn’t even Cole initally failing to pick it up..ot was that he watched him take two shots and never so much as reached out. It was surreal.
    Pk should not have stepped up as aggressively as he had backpressure if he just delayed another fraction of a second. Either way both PK and Bouliion relied on forwards…..and Pk left his position high in the zone…and Bouillon felt obliged to leave his and thought Cole would help…I think BOuillomade the right decision and will admit he didn’t execute stopping the pass.
    You can blame Bouillon for not stopping the pass…but many mistakes had happened by then and most forwards in the NHL are going to make the rigth play no matter what Bouillon does there…classic 2 on 1…comes down to goalie preference I guess…shooter or take away the tap in/pass. In that close I would have went across like Bouillon did

  15. Bripro says:

    Why are there still discussions on trading this player vs that one? In a new period of transition, no one expected out team to be first overall. Few even predicted them to be over 500. What is wrong with riding this wave and enjoying their surge? It might not last, but it’s futile to speculate on grades until they’re needed.
    Don’t stress. No worries! Acuna matata!

    • 24 Cups says:

      Totally agree. Just because O’Reilly is available doesn’t mean we have to pursue him.

      In terms of trades, I think MB has to wait to find out if we are going to be sellers of buyers. If we’re buyers, then you have to ask whether or not it’s worth it, long term. This team, despite it’s great start, is still a team in transition.

      Kaberle and Weber are great insurance policies. In other years, we traded away picks because the team didn’t have depth.

      • Loonie says:

        If you’re a buyer what are you buying and who are you replacing?

        I think those are the key questions. If the team’s healthy I’d be after a left winger who can contribute scoring and a physical element and/or a defenseman who brings Bouillon’s versatility but is an upgrade on him in the physical department.

        • 24 Cups says:

          You also have to factor in the cost.

          Any trade is probably going to centre around one of the team’s 2nd round picks ( is it worth it?) or a prospect that is not in our top four (what kind of return would you get? Probably not much).

          Of course this is based on the notion that we’re talking about a rental player.

          • Loonie says:

            The rugged defenseman, if that’s the route you’re going can cost as little as a 5th round pick.

            A scoring winger with a physical element, if we’re on the same page need wise is probably costing you at minimum a 2nd and a prospect.

            So a 2nd, 5th and a prospect to fill the holes at best.

            Not unreasonable but not something I’d do if the group regresses at all.

          • 24 Cups says:

            We’re at the 1/3 mark right now. It’s best to revisit this question at the 2/3 mark.

            Right now, the Habs have everything going their way. Most other teams have experienced some kind of adversity.

  16. Bripro says:

    Ok who suggested I ask for help? Was that you Tom? I just got slapped! So much for heeding advice from the HIO geniuses…

  17. Bripro says:

    I hate this phone (non) app. I have to scroll and scroll to read the comments. And sitting here waiting for my next appointment, as I scroll and scroll, passers-by are throwing me looks. They think I’m playing with myself. :)

  18. homerbowen says:

    While we are all in the midst of this 5 game win streak “love-in” I remain concerned about our “D”. We are too small and too soft and hopefully it will be addressed. Also, for the long run some of our size up front should be addressed as well (Gionta, DD and Gally). We will not be successful with 3 very small forwards in our line up and I think Gally is the keeper of the three.

  19. Timo says:

    Everyone’s happy.

    Sickening.

  20. HardHabits says:

    What do you call it when a teacher hands out exam papers aggressively?

    Test tossed around!!

    :-D

  21. HAB-PROFESSOR says:

    I agree with BOONE…

    Therrien deserves big credit…

    the players respect him, or do they fear him?

    You don’t want to be in his bad books.. or be on
    the receiving end of that EVIL EYE…

    the guy is no pushover, he is a beast and could crack
    most of those players in half with a swift backhand.

    but he has that soft teddybear side!, the good side,
    the intellectual side and thats where these players
    are striving to be on.

    it has to be a magical (lucky) combination, having
    the right players that will submit to a system delivered
    by the right personality…at the right time.

    whoever put these pieces together deserves even more credit.

    as for the players, what a move by Therrien with WHITE at the end,
    sure, who else is more hungry? more ready to prove themselves?

    after losing 4pts for the team, only Whitey could win that draw.

    BRILLIANT MOVE BY THERRIEN.

    one other note: ELLER is greedy and should not play with GALLY,
    he is in competition with GALLY… must change that line.

    The N.A.G. effect remains the only path to success…
    In PRUST we TRUST

    • Loonie says:

      Eller is definitely greedy, as evidenced by his 1 goal and 6 assists.

      He’s also eighth on the team in shots, and has only missed the net five times in fourteen games.

      Edit: I believe he passed from a prime shooting position on a 3 on 1 last night too.

      Weird.

      • krob1000 says:

        I am assuming he means the 2 on 2 coming down the right where Galchenyuk dropped in behind him and Eller fired the weak shot fromt he blueline…Eller knwe he messed up after and should have dropped it and then drove..but Eller is far from selfish…just made a bad decision but I remember seeing it and thinking it was very “un Eller like”.

      • HAB-PROFESSOR says:

        PERCEIVED? , certainly i am perceiving some greedy play
        on his part, and I am very surprised that you cannot see that,

        unless you are a certified “eller fan”.

        Not that I am against the ‘talented’ Eller, i’m just offering
        my opinion on his play with GALLY.

        lets face it, Gally is a wizard, a modern Kovalev.

        this new generation of juniors (Gally/Gallager etc) are
        just clicking at a higher faster quicker level.

        in fact I don’t even think Gally is at 100% yet…with his
        back between the legs passes… read what Prust said…

        anyway, i’m not knocking Eller, hopefully he can gel with
        Gally, but the kids need protection..

        just like KADRI has ORR as his wingman…saved him last night.


        The N.A.G. effect remains the only path to success…
        In PRUST we TRUST

        • Loonie says:

          One failure to make a drop pass results in a player being selfish?

          Sorry, I must be blind because I’m having a really hard time getting there.

        • Trisomy 21 says:

          Not knocking Eller my ass. That’s not fair to call him selfish, I think he needs to be more selfish if anything. At the same time, however, his shooting needs work right now anyways.

    • BJ says:

      Professor. I think the players are grateful to have clear mandates.

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      “the guy is no pushover, he is a beast and could crack
      most of those players in half with a swift backhand”…wasn’t Therrien beat up by his ex-wife? Just sayin’…

  22. Loonie says:

    Bourque – Plekanec – ?
    Pacioretty – Galchenyuk – Gallagher
    ? – Eller – Leblanc
    Moen – Prust – White

    Emelin – Subban
    ? – Diaz
    Gorges – ?

    Price

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      Next season’s lines or the season after?

    • Say Ash says:

      Tinordi would be up by then, no?

    • 24 Cups says:

      Cole? Gionta? Markov?

      You can’t look too far down the road in today’s NHL. I believe all three of these guys are here for two more years.

      I’m not sure if Tinordi will be ready but he could step up next year as #6 with Bouillon becoming the 7th guy. Leblanc replaces Armstrong.

      • Loonie says:

        Would you bring any of those three back in two years?

        • 24 Cups says:

          You didn’t qualify the time line but I see that you now have.

          Markov and Gionta will be looking at +35 contracts in 2014-15. Obviously, that’s an issue. They can’t come back and expect 5M, long term. I think it will be a year to year situation.

          Cole will still have a year left on his contract which was my initial criticism of the signing. That might be like the final year of the Hamrlik/Spacek contracts. It’s the price you pay on the UFA market.

          Beaulieu/Tinordi and Collberg/Hudon/Bozon should produce three NHLers but the forward trio are all a bit on the small side. I’d still like to see a Hartnell/Simmonds type guy join the team.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      You forgot the ? for head coach.

      Here we are having our best start in recent memory and all you can think of is ditching players. Do you even like this team?

    • BrianSkrudland says:

      I’d like to see Detroit’s Tomas Tatar riding shotgun with Eller. He’s a competitive individual that possesses solid offensive talent.

      A player along the lines of Dustin Brown would be great to see playing with Plekanec. I really like his game.

      ——–
      Wedding Crashers Rule #71: No excuses. Play like a champion!

  23. Ian Cobb says:

    Come on you guys!
    This site is only used for the elite people in journalism.! Do you have any idea the tremendous amount training and testing that I had to take for my HIO posting credentials.

    Summit game tickets, News, Pictures and comments
    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Montreal-Canadiens-We-Are-Fans-Summit/197390760316125

  24. billylove says:

    Re: Eller. I’ve been a huge critic of Lars Eller. Just didn’t like him at all. Now, I’ll take my medicine and admit I was wrong about him. He’s even winning a few battles along the boards, the down and dirty scrum stuff that he never seemed able to win in the past. I can see a future for him in the NHL. Never would have said that a month ago.
    Re: Cole. Sure, he isn’t scoring and is capable of some brain dead decisions, but there were shifts last night where he was clearly busting his ass including before Max scored. Cole may not match last year’s numbers, but overall he’s still an asset.
    Turning point last night: Early on, Price turned the puck over trying to clear which resulted in the Rangers controlling the zone for about 30 sec with good pressure. Rather then give up an early goal which would have been a killer, the team held together and in effect bailed out Price.

    • Loonie says:

      Cole seems to be taking all of the blame on the Rangers’ goal.

      Bouillon deserves the Lion’s share for putting himself in a terrible position and ignoring his man.

      • Propwash says:

        It was a collective brainfart, everyone stopped playing.

        ____________________
        DOOOOOOOOOOOOMED!

        • Loonie says:

          I agree.

          I’m just making the point that if somebody deserves the majority of the blame on that goal, it’s Bouillon and not Cole.

          If Bouillon doesn’t leave his post there’s nobody to pass to.

          • krob1000 says:

            all started with PK…and then COle…Bouillon did nothing wrong but expect his teammates to help… watch it again. Subban is the right dman and he overcommitted at the blueline…if Bouillon doesn’t slide over it is a breakawy…seeing COle he then stepped across and Cole should have helped. Tom I could not possibly disagree more with Bouillon being even remotely at fault ont hat goal…Subban, Cole…maybe a bot Moen…but Bouillon and PRice are victims of sub par play by thier teammates

          • Loonie says:

            Bouillon goes to one knee in the crease and lets a pass get through the crease.

            No, absolutely no fault at all for that goal.

            Wow.

      • Habfan10912 says:

        PK with a brain freeze as well. A team effort but classy of Cole for accepting blame.

        ———————————–

      • krob1000 says:

        ? Bouillon? Subban stepped up with two Rangers on his side to make a hit and missed, then Bouillon who was taking the far side realized noone was going to help onm Price’s right so he took away the clear path to the net assuming COle would take the other man…then Cole did nothing. Bouillon was abandoned by his D partner near the blueline and by his winger near the net…he is the only one who had no fault on the play. He trusted his teammates and they let him and PRice down…even Moen was in the vicinity and perhaps could have cut off the net drive and allowed BOuillon to hold his ground…but Bouillon is in noway responsible for any part of that goal.

        • Loonie says:

          Bouillon didn’t take anything away, he allowed the pass to go through him.

          No responsibility at all.

          • krob1000 says:

            So you would advise him to let the player take the clear path to the net after his dman abandoned him and with a player to help on the back door? wow is right…..Subban..goat 1, Cole…goat 2…moen goat 3…Bouillon and Price…victims of trust…you would rather he let the player walk in alone since Subban was missing hits at the blueline?

          • Loonie says:

            How was he going to take a clear path to the net?

            And how does going to one knee prevent it even if he could get to the net?

            His angle toward the net wasn’t going to allow him to move Price off of the post to begin with.

            Sorry, but dropping to one knee in the middle of the crease doesn’t prevent somebody from driving the net, and in the case last night doesn’t stop the puck from getting through either.

            Lots of players at fault, not just Cole. And in addition, Bouillon in my opinion does deserve his share of blame on it as well. Poor decision and worse execution of taking away the passing lane.

  25. AnimalMother says:

    That letter from O’Reilly’s dad is as bizarre as it gets folks! There is a part of me that feels embarrssed for the entire O’Reilly family and there is also the logical part of me that beleives this to be an integral facet in his stocks/career bellowing down the tubes. All I can say is OUCH!

  26. shiram says:

    I really like this Habs team.
    None of the players really irk me, some I don’t mind, but no one stands out as annoying or anything.
    Therrien is getting praises and they are warranted, but I’d like to give some praise to his coaching staff as well, Gallant, Jodoin, Daigneault and Groulx are all doing a good job.

    But this team result so far proves to me that last year was some sort of aberration, freak injuries and bad luck combined into a clusterfark of bad hockey, but out of that crummy season came a diamond in the form of Galchenyuk.
    I look forward to each new game, though the last few ones have not been the best of entertainment.

  27. BJ says:

    Someone posted a link to the full 24 CH episode 1. Could you please repost and if episode 2 is also available to an online link, please do so.

  28. Rightwing says:

    THE TWO SIDED COIN OF THE MONTREAL MEDIA

    This ridiculous analogy of the Booner is the extremist, exploitative aspect of the Montreal media that detracts from players (or even coaches) wanting to play here.

    There’s a fine line between praise and mockery, even mocking the reader and fan and their alleged over zealous approach to their favorite team.

    This is what opens the door to the “sky is falling” analogies after a couple of losses.

    It’s insanity.

    Booner, rather than to mock your readers, why don’t you try doing something somewhat resembling the quality of Red Fisher’s example?

    Maybe all those fantasy games that were covered here are getting mixed up in your head with the real ones…

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Is there really a fine line between praise and mockery? That is the kind of clumsy writing you read in a Dan Brown novel, not on a literate chat site such as this one.

    • Mike Boone says:

      That’s “extremist”? Gimme a break, man. And I didn’t cover any fantasy games.

      Mike Boone
      Hockey Inside/Out blogger

      • Habfan10912 says:

        A long time smart poster once told me “do not feed it or it will grow”.

        ———————————–

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        Extremist is unwarranted I agree. “Diva” would be more accurate.

      • Rightwing says:

        Booner, you cloud the line in the new media between journalist and fan. In the process, you mock and manipulate fans’ emotions towards their team. You act the part at one moment, then play on their emotions at the next.

        Is it journalism; is it advocacy? It’s a hybrid writing that, like many news journalists today, gives up the guise of impartiality, but uses the tools of how to emotionalize the reader and keep em coming back for those ads on the side of the page? It’s an interesting discussion which should be had.

        I understand that papers are trying to figure out their role in the decentralized world of the net, but c’mon. Isn’t this a little too obvious?

        And no, you only participate in the same site as had the cartoon stories. You might even agree with me in private on those.

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      I think you’re taking this site a little too seriously. I don’t think this site was intended to be a Mecca of journalism. Also, using Red Fisher as a comparable for anyone is ridiculous. The guy covered the Rocket for heaven’s sake…it is not fair to compare him to anyone.

    • boing007 says:

      Boone has imagination and a great sense of humor. I thought it was a scream.

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

    • Cal says:

      “There’s a fine line between praise and mockery”.
      Is that the blue line or the red line?

      http://calshabsongparodies.weebly.com

  29. Loonie says:

    If Gorges really has been a stick in the mud I hope he understands that leadership starts with being an example and that he’s been the weak link on defense so far this year.

    Better look in the mirror before looking around the room.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      I agree that Gorges blew his credibility over the PK crap somewhat.
      Now it is his time to suck it up and start playing like he can.

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        I always assumed Gorges was half-joking when he said those things about PK.

      • Loonie says:

        Many seem to think he’ll be the next captain Ian. I’d be surprised if it doesn’t turn out to be Pacioretty.

        If I’m Bergevin and I’m looking to strengthen my defense corps, I’m trying to upgrade on Gorges.

        Nothing personal, but he’s the most one dimensional defenseman we have.

        • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

          Right now, Prust is the best leader on the team. Spends time with PK, backs up the kids, does all the dirty work, etc. Arguably the best “teamate” on this team.

        • shiram says:

          Cole and Gorges were the candidates to replace Gionta the past season, this year it seems pretty clear to me both of them have taken steps back from being captain material.
          A young guy like Patches, could indeed be an interesting choice.

          • Whatever says:

            I’ve never understood why fans comment on the choice of captain. We can somewhat critique what we see on the ice, but we never truly see what happens in the room and behind the scenes. Including a team edited 24 CH show. How do we ever know who is the most respected leader on the team?

      • lavie says:

        Coincidentally, after throwing the craps over Subban right after PK’s contract, both Markov and Gorges have been playing in mediocrity.

    • B says:

      Gorges leads the Habs D in shorthanded and even strength TOI. His +5 trails only Diaz’s +6. He is 4th in the league in blocked shots. He is the leading defensive Dman on a team sitting 4th in the league in GA/G.

      It seems to me Gorges is doing what is expected of him.

      –Go Habs Go!–

  30. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    Just read the news. I guess we will never have a coach named “Pasta”…what a joke. It warms my heart thinking I will be paying that inspector’s pension with my hard earned tax dollars someday. If the OFL goes after “souvlaki”, I’m outta here…

  31. Galchenyuk’s average 11 minutes/game and 4th in scoring, my lord he’s going to be real good! We can thank Gainey for all of this. If he hadn’t signed Gomez, and we kept McDonagh, we would have never drafted so high last summer. Bob Gainey is a genius :)

    LET’S PACK THE HOUSE
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    Twitter @Sholi2000
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    Custom Sports Figures

  32. Bripro says:

    A papal reference with MT in the same breath. I guarantee my granny is turning over in her grave.
    My dad however is doing the jigg following another W by our surprisingly patient Habs.
    The only other disappointment (aside from Cole) is my man Gorges. He’s made a few uncharacteristic cough ups during the last 2-3 games.
    And am I the only one who’s noticed that he refuses to acknowledge (head butt) PK during their after-game ceremony?
    After the Tampa game, I might not be a pro lip reader, but I’m sure he dropped PK an F-bomb.

  33. BJ says:

    Lars Eller is becoming a bigger Tomas Plekanec, he still has a way to go, but he’s certainly on the right track. I cannot imagine too many players on any NHL team that are as complete as our #14. The big added plus with Plekanec is his mature, professional team approach. A few posters keep suggesting to trade him. The question becomes who could replace him adequately in a trade?

    • Loonie says:

      He(Eller) had one of his worst games of the season last night and was still one of our better forwards.

      He’s developing into an excellent player right before our eyes.

      Hopefully the guy upstairs is taking notice and makes the right decision in the off-season.

      • Kooch7800 says:

        I have a question Loonie, You are a big Eller fan and he is showing growth this year. Do you think MT is doing a good job with him? I don’t think he is doing a bad job. I think he can communicate and all of our young players seem to be benefitting. Something we didn’t see with JM

        Despite Eller being on the bottom lines, I think MT is easing him into more responsibility and it is paying off.

        “Keep your stick on the Ice”

        • Steeltown Hab says:

          I think MT has done more to hurt Eller’s development than help him.

          ———————————

          Lars, PK, Galchenyuk, Pac, Emelin – @J_Perez22

          • BJ says:

            Shock us all and post something positive. Once would be a good start.

          • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

            Unfortunately the center position is crowded this year. I think it will be cleared up this summer.

          • Kooch7800 says:

            I am not sure I agree Steeltown (which is fine). I think Eller this year has looked the best he has as a hab. I am not sure he would have done as well under JM as an example.

            His game seems to be coming together. We are only 16 games in and I am really interested to see where is in another 15 games.

            I am giving MT the benefit of the doubt on this one and think his communication and as Loonie notes below his play after being benched and being given more responsibility.

            Time will tell I guess but I think Eller is starting to shine now

            “Keep your stick on the Ice”

        • Loonie says:

          I think that the treatment early in the season is being blown out of proportion.

          Many columnists and writers are guilty of attributing the healthy scratches to Eller’s surge when the fact is that it was three games following his second game of the season when he turned it on. Maybe a closed door conversation with Therrien happened but I don’t know.

          Therrien’s done a nice job of incorporating Eller into the spotlight more without disrupting the ebb and flow of games, but he’s done that with others like Prust as well.

          As long as Therrien’s willing to forgive the occasional bad game from Eller like he has with Cole, Gorges, Desharnais and continues to reward his good play I’m happy with his development path.

          If Therrien goes back to the 1.0 version all bets are off. It’s a lot easier to ruin a player than it is to develop one.

          • Kooch7800 says:

            I agree with all of the above.

            If MT goes back to 1.0 we will be near the bottom of the standings.

            I was not a fan of his hiring but am eating crow for now

            “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • boing007 says:

      Pavel Datysuk.

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

  34. HabinBurlington says:

    So I have been happy with MT so far, but I heard a rumour that as part of his make all the players better people program, he apparantly has Ryan O’Reilly’s father booked to give a speech about Character.

    I am now afraid, Very Afraid….

  35. Loonie says:

    Galchenyuk will be in Malkin territory before long.

    That is all.

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      Malkin-lite?

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Most likely true. He has great skill and vision and the size to boot. The fact he is only 19 now means he is going to be a beast in the NHL for a long long time.

      Maybe we should come in last in the east a few more times.

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • Kevy says:

      I am trying to figure out where Chucky will be in 4-5 years. Malkin is probably the best comaprison for his skill, size, and strength. Is it over reaching ? I think not but is this because I’m looking at him through rose coloured glasses, and I’m just buying in to all the hype. There is a lot of excitement around and about him. I have seen nothing that tells me he will not be a star. He’s not going to win rookie of the year. He will not be a top ten player this year or maybe even next year, but I really beleive he will be an elite superstar for many years to come. So am I delusional too hopeful or just seeing the star of a great career?

      • Loonie says:

        I don’t think you’re out to lunch.

        Malkin is a perfect comparable for Galchenyuk. Great shot, has elite and creative passing, his puck handling with and without the benefit of space is already elite as well.

        Only a matter of time.

      • Kooch7800 says:

        He is only just turned 19 and has 10 points in 16 games while playing on the third line. He is playing very well. by 22 he will be leading this team offensively.

        His shot has really impressed me for his age. He has a great release

        “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • krob1000 says:

      That goal last night was incredible….there were three incredibly soft handed plays on that sequence….the chip over the stick and one hand pass were things of beauty and then he goes off the post to finish….it was a 3 on 1 sure but the skill level there was something that only in Kovalev I can recalls eeing in a Habs jersey. His hands are just so good….once gets more omfortable at the NHL level and gains a few pounds I think somewhere between Tavares and Malkin is likely…I would love him to better than Malkin but IMOt here is onyl 1 player who is better than Malkin and thats his teammate

      • Chris says:

        What he said.

        Let Galchenyuk be Galchenuk. He looks like he’s going to be special.

        We don’t need to try to compare him to Malkin, who is one of the top 3 or 4 forwards in the NHL (along with Crosby, Stamkos and Datsyuk, for my money).

  36. jrshabs1 says:

    I’m up for MB’s 1st big trade…Eric Cole. I played with a very young Eric in JR B way back when ….he’s just not the same guy this year. Too bad because he’s the only NHL player I’ve ever played with and I want him to do well…but it seems he’s lost a step.

    Go Habs Go!!

  37. Dr.Rex says:

    ITs clear just by watching CH24 that next to Price and Markov that Pleks is the most important player on the team.

  38. OMG says:

    I don’t know for sure what kind of dollars Ryan O’Reilly is looking for. He averaged 37 points a season with colorado. How much money does that warrant on a contract. to me that looks like a 3rd line player ….

    • Dr.Rex says:

      His agent has clearly focused in on the Grabovski contract. Grabovski is becoming to the Leafs what Gomez became to the Habs.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Average points doesn’t tell the story for a 22 year old who first played when he was 19.

      According to the experts he is on a par with two other players picked in 2009: Matt Duchenne and Evander Kane. Duchenne signed a 2-yr contract for $3.5M for 2 years and Kane is getting over $5M for 6 years in the Peg.

      Colo wants to pay him Duchenne money and he wants Kane money.

      Neither side is technically “wrong” in this case.

      However if he gets traded, whoever takes him will need to give him around what E Kane is getting.

  39. Hobie Hansen says:

    I’m getting some real satisfaction out of this winning streak and the start to the season, as most people are.

    I’ve always believed in the hard nosed type of coach. Emotion, to me, is the most important element of a good hockey team. There are limits, but I believe players respect a tough, team orientated guy who’s not afraid to sound off when needed.

    There seems to be this belief around here that you can slap a team together, full of guys like Cammalleri, Koivu, Selanne, kovalev, Diaz and the reigning Lady Bing winner and you’ll win the Stanley Cup. That you can get pushed around all night, get beat up with no response, and lose 5 nothing, without so much as a whimper from a teammate or the coach, and it will be all forgotten once the game is over and tomorrow is a new day. You will never win with that attitude.

    A tough coach who demands respect like Therrien, a physical player full of heart like Prust, a spark plug like Gallagher, a power forward like Bourque and an attitude that we’ll all stick up for each other, though thick and thin, is exactly what this team needed.
    This team was a joke the past few years! They were the most passive bunch of babies who would have been considered soft in a women’s league.

    What we are watching now folks is a real NHL hockey team. It’s about time!

    GO HABS GO!

  40. habsfan0 says:

    Having beaten 2 contending teams on consecutive nights(Carolina & Rangers),I wonder if the Habs will take the Islanders for granted and suffer a letdown against them?

  41. Dr.Rex says:

    Now that we are a third through the season lets review a few of the big questions many posters had (no names included) at the start of the season.

    1) DO people still think Kaberle should play ahead of Diaz and Bouillon?
    2) Should we still buy out Bourque at the end of season?
    3) DO we still need an upgrade at backup goaltender?
    4) Would Galchenyuk be better served down in Sarnia?
    5) Did we make a massive mistake not signing Konopka?
    6) Was Michel Therrien a bad choice for HC?
    7) Should we have traded for MA Bergeron?
    8) IS Gallagher too small for the NHL?
    9) Should we have signed Subban to a long term deal?
    10) Is Markov ever going to play decent hockey again?

    • 24 Cups says:

      4. I thought that Galchenyuk should spend the year in Sarnia and he surely would have if it wasn’t for the lockout. Lockout aside, the kid has certainly made the grade.

      8. Gallagher isn’t too small but having Gionta, DD and Gallagher on the top nine is one too many.

      10. The old Markov is gone and will never return. The new Markov will eventually move down to be a great 2nd pairing Dman. An 80% Markov is better than most. Subban, at some point in time, needs to become the man on the D.

    • Mike Boone says:

      All Nos. But #8 is a Maybe.

      Mike Boone
      Hockey Inside/Out blogger

      • HabsFan1111 says:

        How is #8 a maybe? If the question was do we have too many pint size players, then a maybe would be warranted. BG is a kid who’s been told he’s too small for his whole life and he makes up for it with effort. I’m sorry, but #8 is also a no.

  42. j2w4habs25 says:

    Leafs Nation was quiet lastnight. I hope their point in winning is over. Its about this time of Year they start dropping games and in the standings. :) PLEASE!

    Carey Price #31

    • frontenac1 says:

      I thought the first couple of outdoor games were fun, but now?
      Meh. Becoming maudlin.

      • Habfan10912 says:

        Gets a buzz (no not that kind) in the States still, Front. I am sure that’s why they still have them. As a fan I kind of like them although the quality of hockey is impacted. CHeers.

        ———————————–

        • frontenac1 says:

          Buzzed?Why didn”t I think of that? I will give it a go. Thanks Amigo. Busy day coming up. Some Ice Fishing,then meeting the lads at the Saloon to watch the Gals Curling. Saludos!

  43. Twillingater says:

    I would not mind one bit losing to the Leafs every game of the season if it means we win 5 in a row after every loss!

    \”Winning is habit. Unfortunately, so is losing\”

  44. JF says:

    Of our recent victories, I think this one impresses me the most. Visibly tired and lacking energy, playing their second game in as many nights after reaching New York well after midnight, the team yet managed to hang with the Rangers for two periods before taking the lead in the third. For the first two thirds of the game, the Habs had little speed through the neutral zone, passes weren’t as crisp as usual, and they seemed to spend most of their energy containing the Rangers’ attack and clearing the zone, their own attack largely stifled by the Rangers’ blanket-like defence. What is impressive is that they came out with more jump in the third than they had shown all game.

    I think one of the reasons Therrien is being so effective is that he communicates well with the players. They get benched for egregious errors or lack of intensity, but he talks to them, lets them know that they’ll draw back in, that they still have a role to play, and spells out exactly what he wants from them. Lars Eller is a transformed player the last few games. Where before we saw only flashes of his ability, we’re now seeing it on almost every shift. He has become one of our best forwards at battling for pucks along the boards and creating space. Ryan White has also been very effective since being reinserted in the lineup and was rewarded late in the game. Not only did he take and win the all-important faceoff, but he battled to get the puck off the boards leading to Diaz’s empty-netter.

    Speaking of Diaz, I was glad to hear the guys on L’Antichambre giving him a lot of love last night. They praised his intelligence, his vision, his decision-making, and his positioning, even going so far as to mention his name in the same breath with Rafalski’s. If P.K. had signed in the off-season, Diaz would likely have started the season in the pressbox, instead of which he has become one of our best defencemen.

    Galchenyuk has played a key role in three of our last four victories. Against the Panthers, he set up Bourque for the overtime goal. His pass to Prust got the Habs going against the Canes. And last night he scored the winning goal. If he keeps it up, he’ll be in the running for the Calder. There were a couple of analysts who maintained after the last draft that he was the one player from that draft who would really stand out over the next decade or so. Looks like they could have been right.

    Looking ahead, the next game is one last year’s team would almost certainly have blown. It should be very winnable. Let’s hope the guys can keep the streak going.

    • mark-ID says:

      For a guy whose biggest fault was his agressive emotion behind the bench, Therrien has been super calm so far this season. It has been quite impressive. Of course the team is doing well, but even during the losses to Toronto and comeback for Buffalo, he kept his composure.

      “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

      • JF says:

        I like his manner both behind the bench and in press conferences. After the no-show against the Leafs, he just said the team played a terrible game, had no net presence, were clearly not ready, and he would make sure it never happened again. His comments are usually guarded but to the point and contain a lot more substance than JM’s ever did. I also like how active the coaches are behind the bench during games. JM and his crew just stood there like monuments (except Kirk Muller when he was here); Therrien’s guys are constantly talking to the players.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Both you and Mark are spot on. Even after that stupid loss to the Leaf’s and the awful loss to Buffalo this teams confidence was not shaken in the least. I was shocked that we came away with two points last night as the Rangers showed signs recently of getting it together. A great road win.

      ———————————–

  45. mark-ID says:

    I saw a comment about Pleks and taking late penalties. Funny thing is, I said to myself after they killed the penalty off with 5 minutes left that we would definately have a make up call. I thought it was a weak call on Pleky at best. The ref took a couple of seconds before even lifting his arm.

    With that being said, the boys have to watch where there sticks go near the end of the games.

    “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

  46. Rad says:

    Wow! Our fearless Habs continue to roll! What a difference Marc Bergevin has made to this hockey club. When he was hired he talked about restoring a winning culture — and that is precisely what he has done. In sharp contrast to his predecessor, Bergevin has brought a team approach to both management as well as the product on the ice. There is hope once again in Montreal.

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      He is not getting enough credit.

      • j2w4habs25 says:

        yeah he is not. Maybe the media is waiting to get through half way the season. But so far hes done a good job, the coaching staff and the players could use one more notch to their game.

        Carey Price #31

    • ed says:

      the lineup is much better this season;

      1) because of key injured players coming back – Markov especially, and Gionta

      2) because of some key additions; Prust, Galchenyuk, and Gallagher have literally been difference makers in several games

      3) Carey Price – I have never seen him play better. He is way better this year then he was last year; His poise, his confidence, his rebound control, his puck handling.

      Look, Therrien’s system is making everyone accountable in all 3 zones, and that is extremely significant.

      The fact that the lineup is better means the players on the ice are more likely to execute properly; and especially in all 3 zones.

      And the goalie is world class. Last night it looked like the Rangers were just not in the same league as Price. Their shots were handled so easily, so expertly, it was like a Major Junior team was shooting against an NHL elite goalie.

  47. Timo says:

    HIO doesn’t have Habs schedule? Argh!

  48. OMG says:

    Complainers about pleks not been all that good on faceoffs. who cares. look at the points he has for the team. he’s the best player we have.

    Get rid of Pleks. we’d better replace him with someone that can do everything he does and more.

    Some of the fans the Habs have. I can’t believe it. complain if they’re winning. complain if they’re losing. Wicked.

  49. HabinBurlington says:

    So Ryan O’Reilly’s father wrote a letter to a Denver newspaper. I don’t know, I read it, but seem more confused after reading it. You will see the word Character a great deal, but not sure what WTF the father is trying to say as it relates to his son and the Avalanche.

    http://blogs.denverpost.com/avs/2013/02/19/ryan-oreillys-father-opens-up-on-his-sons-situation-with-avalanche/12635/?source=rsshomeblog

    • Timo says:

      If your father is writing letters to the news papers this player will probably be more of a headache than anything. Unless player we are getting has papa Campbell it’s not worth it.

    • Chuck says:

      I think that he’s saying that ‘character’ should be weighed the same as goals or assists when deciding on a dollar amount for a contract. I think.

      The only thing that I’m sure about his dad is that he comes across as… um… a guy that didn’t get 95 in his math class, shall we say.

      ___________________________________________________
      Being a Hab fan is like buying real estate: only over the long-haul will you appreciate the true value of your investment.

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      What a bunch of BS…

      “This is not about money”…yeah right.

      “How many goals you got or how many points you got was not how you measured yourself”…this the NHL not peewee. You’re judged by production, like in every other job in the real world.

      He should shut up and let the agent do his job before he scares off potential suitors.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      They corrected some of the grammar and it is still an incoherent mess.

      The basic point, as far as I can tell, is that wanting more money isn’t about money.

    • CanadienBoy says:

      Would we trade DD and Weber for that guy

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Perspective on this issue is interesting…..

      It is quite interesting the fact that when it was PK we gave him the benefit of the doubt that he wasn’t asking for crazy amounts of money or term and that we don’t know what exactly is being said between agent and the club……

      With O’Reilly we take everything about him wanting huge money and term as fact. Everyone now taking shots at his character and saying he thinks he is Gretzky.

      It is just interesting seeing how people interpret things

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • Cal says:

      It’s as if Mrs. Lindros had a sex-change operation, lost 50 points of IQ and became Ryan’s dad. What an idiot!

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Wasn’t it Ben (Commandant) who rightfully noted that Mommy’s and Daddy’s business involvement in their boys should end when they are drafted. I remember Lindros had some experience with over bearing parents as well.

      ———————————–

      • Kooch7800 says:

        It never looks good when your parents are speaking about your character to the media….

        That is like your Mom telling you that you are beautiful….

        Sadly, my mom always just told me looks were not important…I must be really ugly LOL

        “Keep your stick on the Ice”

  50. j2w4habs25 says:

    My 3 Stars lastnight were:

    1. Galchenyuk
    2. Eller
    3. Price

    Carey Price #31

  51. joshua94k says:

    At the start of the season many so-called experts, including the media, stated the Montreal Canadiens will not make the play-offs. They said teams like the 8-6 Rangers, 7-9 Flyers, 6-6 Cup winners (Kings) are the team that will go far.

    It shows how much they know. Despite being the most penalized team (biased officiating). the Canadiens keep battling. Despite the best efforts of the referees to give Tampa Bay a win last week, the Habs prevailed.

    This team is very similar to the 86 Canadiens a mixture of hot young players and seasoned veterans. Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Pacioretty, Subban, Price, Eller, Desharnais, Diaz, along with the veterans like Gionta, Cole, Markov, Gorges, & Plekanec, this team can compete with anyone.

    Can the Bruins go far with Rask? Will the Kings repeat as champions?. Can you rely on the Rangers, Canucks or Flyers? There are no powerful teams, not even the Blackhawks.

    I said it at the beginning of the season, the Canadiens will win the Cup.

    “I want to kill somebody cutting across the blue line and I want to score the goal and celebrate. And I’ll do it by any means possible to win a hockey game. That’s how I feel playing there (the Bell Centre). I am not sure I have that feeling anywhere else.” – PK Subban

  52. Ozmodiar says:

    When is our notoriously “slow starter” going to get going?

    Hopefully soon. I’m starting to get the impression that he’s a bit disinterested or out of shape. Thoughts of retirement on his mind, perhaps? Maybe, in his mind, he’s gone to Carolina. Who knows?

    On a brighter note…..Lars Eller. I hope the doubters are paying attention. Size, skill, speed, versatility, PK, PP………dude can play! Perhaps most importantly, he’s getting better each game. Then there’s this:

    Lars Eller ‏@Eller_89
    MSG tonight. Not quite like the Bell Center, but it will have to do.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      And here I just thought he was referencing the Chinese Food in New York having MSG in it, while in Montreal it is MSG free. ;-)

      Stubbs had mentioned awhile ago that Cole had an injury during off season training. Apparantly it dragged for quite some time, before he could properly resume training. I suspect he is a bit behind in conditioning, but I don’t there is anything wrong with his attitude. Gorges commented on how important it was how Cole rallied the troops after the Leafs shallacking.

      Plus he apparantly hurt himself when stitching together all those union hats. Suffered a pin prick I believe.

    • habsfan0 says:

      Maybe Cole is thinking of this while he’s skating:

      http://youtu.be/9MIk8XqO3J0

      • Montreal_Mort says:

        I was at the Garden last night to see the game – tres fun!

        But Cole – wow – no focus on the back check on Rangers’ first goal, no intensity even after being bench for a few shifts = yikes. I’d give him a couple of games from the Press Box while we see what we can get on the trade market

    • Lafleurguy says:

      Will remember Cole’s generosity and leadership in flying Louis Leblanc’s parents to Anaheim for no. 71’s first NHL game. Different thinking than Gauthier’s reply to Camalleri that no. 13 could keep his Canadiens jersey as a memento if he paid for it.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

  53. j2w4habs25 says:

    I gotta say the icings problem last night was heck boring but maybe it was a good thing for all those icings. I have no idea why they called all of them lastnight. My thought was the Referee’s were trying to make the Habs pay by a Rangers goal. But thank goodness there was no goals.. The boys did play good and Price made some key saves lastnight. I think he has his confidence back. We need our playpower chances back into goals, I remember when the power play was so strong i knew right away there was going to be a MTL goal as soon as we were on the power play – the team has to put more practise time on the power-plays. We are getting to far from the top. Pretty soon our strong ways on the powerplay will be gone. The coaching staff have to work and the players have to get something going. Maybe take Subban out and let Markov do his work alone. He was doing so good at the begining of the season, until PK came back he’s been puck all. As for COLE he had a good game lastnight – if the team hadn’t score those 3 goals lastnight he would be the blame for the Rangers only goal. Hes gotta step it up one more notch and puck it off what ever is bugging him. Pretty soon Gary Bettman will make caps that say “Puck Cole” if he doesnt get anything going lol no I’m kidding.

    Carey Price #31

  54. HabinBurlington says:

    Is Radulov going to try re-join NHL again, with KHL reg. season now complete and playoffs set to begin? Andrei Kostitsyn?
    http://kuklaskorner.com/psh/comments/khl-season-concludes

    Is this when we bring Artyukhin over for the playoff run?

  55. habsfan0 says:

    While I admire Tomas Plekanec and think he is an integral part of this team,I’ve always had an issue with his performance in the face-off circle at certain points in the game.

    Having said that,I wonder if there is a statistic showing a player’s face-off proficiency,late in a close game(tied,or leading or trailing by a goal)with under 5 minutes left and in the defensive zone?

  56. j2w4habs25 says:

    I was watching the game on MSG and they sounded stupid telling there viewers Alex Galchenyuk had a GF from Montreal and he needed to learn the french lanugage. I thought he already knew. But they go on to say why doesnt the girlfriend teach him , instead of hiring a professional teacher. Hmm

    I’ve notice the American broadcasters on any American outlet have to bring up Galchenyuk. They seem to favor him and bring up his gold medel “From Malwakee Wisconsin” hehe Isnt he truly a Russian ?

    Carey Price #31

  57. JayK-47 says:

    (begin tooting of own horn)

    Anyone remember when the Habs signed Prust and I changed my mind about trading Pleks?

    I thought Pleks was worn out, overused, under appreciated and showed it by not dishing the rock which made it tough for Bourque or any linemates to have much of an impact.

    Fast forward several months and the Habs are rolling two PK lines consisting of Moen/Eller and White/Prust or some combo sometimes involving Pleks.

    But damn, it’s paying off. Pleks has juice to skate the whole game now and is both playing well with others and scoring at his best rate yet.

    Glad I called SOMETHING right for once!

    (end tooting of own horn)

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      If you don’t toot your own horn, who will? Agree on Pleks except I wish he would stop taking those late penalties.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Did you think it was a penalty? I thought it was a major league Dive, worthy of Olympic Medal, Jacques Rogge was smiling somewhere.

        • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

          Sometimes you have to avoid putting yourself in that situation. It’s clear the Habs don’t get those calls so they have to be careful. Also, the refs are always leaning towards the home team when they are down one with time running out. He should know that.

          • Mattyleg says:

            Yes, but also allowing him to skate past without trying to check him is a far greater sin, in my books, than taking the risk that the referee might be stupid enough to fall for a dive.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • kempie says:

          It was a monster floppy dive. We knew it was coming though. A 1 goal lead with 3 minutes left in the 3rd against a tough team to bump up to 1st place? 2 minutes for looking so good. It’s how we roll.

          But yeah, he looked like one of those fish that jump into the boat on the Discovery channel.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Pleks is def our best all round forward that can be used in any situation.

      The Prust addition I think is underrated. He is a useful player. Will he ever score a ton of goals ….no but he prevents a lot and also creates room for the kids

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

  58. dhenry1234 says:

    Last night was a game that we could have easily lost. Remember everyone, the season isn’t over yet. Don’t get too cocky or it will come back to bite us in the ass.

    Don’t like that picture of MT as the pope at all. That’s just me being superstitious though.

    If we would have lost last night we’d be talking about how Cole was absolutely soft last night and how the boys couldn’t even put up 20 shots on net.

    Was definitely a win that we can thank Carey Price for.

    Habs are playing wonderfully this year and I’m definitely excited, but I’m not getting my hopes up yet. I’ve been let down many times before.

  59. 24 Cups says:

    “And while the Canadiens have improved in the faceoff circle of late, they’re still, generally speaking, brutal on the draw.

    So a team that starts out with the puck less frequently than almost any other in the league is fourth in the NHL in shots-against per game (26.7). That is a testament to two things – the job Therrien has done implementing his defensive system and the outstanding work of Montreal’s relative no-name defense corps.”

    Interesting viewpoint from Ken Campbell of THN.

  60. frontenac1 says:

    Great road game by Les Boys last night. And how about Prust last night .On the ice for all three goals. He gives you everything every shift. Man that guy is quickly becoming my favourite player. Keep him out there to mind Chucky and Gally when he returns .Here”s why.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GNZ3C560rrs

  61. Habfan29 says:

    Brandon Prust the most important Free agent acquisition in the NHL this season. WTG Marc Bergevin Prust is just the type of player we needed and he came as advertised. To all those that thought that we paid too much what do you say now? In Prust we Trust!

    • habsnyc says:

      Talk to me in year four of the contract. The whole league was willing to pay him for the first two or three seasons. Prust is neither playing better nor worse than last year. He was not a steal.

      MB deserves credit for putting together a lineup that has depth and balance without over reliance on any one line. I agree that MB is a big part of turning the Habs from a bottom of the standings one line team to a top of the standings balanced team.

      But, I am still not sold on the Prust contract for the long run. It is just like signing Cole or Gionta. No one disputes their talent. GM are just cautious about how well they can play on the back end of their contracts. Cole scored a ton of goals last year. How do you feel about year four of his contract given his current performance?

      MB paid Prust around what it would have cost to keep Kostitsyn, give or take, assuming AK had not been traded and gone AWOL. He made a decision to overpay for physical play than to overpay for scoring. I think that decision was dictated by the marketplace. There were no scorers available who wanted to come to Montreal. Perhaps, he went overboard in signing Prust and Moen to long term deals. I think Prust makes Moen redundant. I also worry that Prust will not last four years if he keeps leading the league in fights.

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

  62. HabinBurlington says:

    I haven’t been in favour before of the ignore button feature on HI/O, but in recent games there is some new posters whom I would love to use it for. In the past I have always thought, well just ignore them yourself and move on, but there seems to have been an innundation of bile on the live blog nights. Curious how others feel, but I think I may go a few games without it. As a friend of mine on here put it, seems better during the day when the kids are at school.

  63. habsnyc says:

    Was it a new strategy last night? First time a team ever won a game by taking more icings than shots on goal. And the one time it was not an icing, Montreal scored. Brilliant.

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

    • JayK-47 says:

      It was a plan to wear out the NYR’s superior defense corps and it worked brilliantly!

      • krob1000 says:

        Wrong…..it was a plan to wear out the refs and linesmen…it worked on Patches goal….ref didn’t want to skate all the way back to the other end again so he just waved off Cole’s dump in.

        • The Juice says:

          Agree, I thought for sure that was an icing…

          __________________________________________________________________________

          “To you from failing hands we throw the torch, be yours to hold it high!”

  64. HabinBurlington says:

    Larry Brooks talking about finishing the check hits leading to concussions, includes PK’s hit on Semin against Carolina. Also Larry seems to think our Habs trap more than the the Jacques Lemaire Devils teams.

    http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/rangers/heads_they_lose_Fw3f0yIcnjHpaNM9eBBsEP

  65. 24 Cups says:

    “Dave_Stubbs (Dave Stubbs): And is everyone enjoying Therrien 2.0 so far? He’s been an extension of a new #Habs culture, from top down. Fun to watch.”

    Assuming that MB wanted to go with an experienced coach, the Habs had three choices last summer – Therrien, Hartley and Crawford. Maybe it’s time for fans to stop referring to Therrien’s past and just give him the credit he is due in the here and now.

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      Overall, MT has done a good job. No doubt. However, it is still early and the team is very different from last year. They basically added Markov, Gionta, Prust, Chucky, Gallagher, Armstrong and Frankie B. I would have been shocked if they did not improve this year. MT deserves some credit but it has to be tempered. Some credit should go to MB and the “new” players as well.

    • ebk says:

      absolutely correct, old friend. He’s done a very good job implementing a style of play that’s more condusive to the personnel on the team. Plus, he also seems to do a very good job of communicating what is expect from the players and their roles with the team.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      I was not a fan of the hiring but openly admit he is doing a good job so far.

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

  66. mrhabby says:

    Team is playing great defensively. Not being a downer but lets wait and see how the team stacks up against the laffs, bruins who we play a total of 7 times and also the pens and a few others. I can’t see the team winning the division. I counted 10 players over the age of 30 last night. We know MB will be looking at making some changes over time..iam enjoying the ride.

  67. commandant says:

    Part 2, of the February Draft Rankings 11-20

    http://lastwordonsports.com/2013/02/20/nhl-draft-february-rankings-part-2-11-20/

    and Mick on why the NHL needs a coaches challenge

    http://lastwordonsports.com/2013/02/20/getting-it-right-why-the-nhl-needs-a-coachs-challenge/

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

  68. montrealtilldeath says:

    Should have been a shutout for Price were it not for Cole’s lapse. He seems to have a lot of these mental lapses this year. 3 white shirts (not including Price) and one blue shirt. Amazing picture.

  69. 24 Cups says:

    I find it interesting to compare two of the big plays from other games last night.

    The Datsyuk end to end goal is a thing of beauty. Great skill and playmaking. It’s also interesting that Nashville didn’t hack him with a cheap shot. Does anyone think this play could happen against some of the other teams in the NHL?

    Speaking of cheap shots, contrast the Hansen hit on Hossa with the Datsyuk goal. Players and fans will trot out all the hockey cliches on this play but it’s still an unnecessary, dirty hit. This was Vancouver’s answer on how to stop a guy (and team) who was lighting them up.

    Each night in the NHL is like a game of Russian Roulette. We all wake up every morning to see who the culprit and victim were from the previous night.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Post of the day 24. Any hit to the head = suspension.

      ———————————–

      • jmsheehy19 says:

        Agreed. I couldn’t believe that Dreger seemed to almost attack Mike Johnson when he said it deserved a suspension, regardless of intent.

        The problem is, suspensions are nothing comparatively.

        Cheap shot a guy and take him out for a month? You get 2-3 games.

        Hit a guy late and dangerously, injuring him for a week? You get a game.

        Try to take out a guy’s knees, but fail? You get 0 games.

        I’m one of those who wants fighting out of the game, but until the league is willing to protect the players, it is sadly needed.

        • Kooch7800 says:

          Inconsistently =NHL discipline. I look at something like the Raffi Torres Hit on Hossa…it was late but was nowhere near a cheap shot in my opinion. He should have got maybe a couple games but they through the book at him with 24. Chris Prongers stomps a guy with his skate and gets well under 10 games. Make sense to you?

          “Keep your stick on the Ice”

  70. montrealtilldeath says:

    I know every one is getting high on Diaz but I keep track of which pairing has the hardest time clearing the puck out of our end and it is consistently the Diaz Gorges pairing. This was true again last night. This will eventually begin to show up in goals against as other teams also watch game tape.

  71. habsnyc says:

    ESPN radio covering the game last night referred to Subban as a player who is far more effective, but far less exciting than last year.

    The Rangers are not the same team without Prust and Dubinsky. They lost some grit and secondary scoring in order to get a top of the line power foward and yet, the Rangers are more beatable. Granted Lunqvist is having an off year and the Rangers are allowing more shots to get through to him, but it is interesting how adding that “final piece” took away part of the foundation.

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

    • boing007 says:

      Reminds me of the beer commercial thirty years ago: Great taste! Less filling!

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

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Agree NYC. Like you I’ve watched a lot of Ranger games and they are still struggling to gel as a team. We see what Prust has done for our team and I heard many Ranger player lament the loss of Prust.
      I still think that talent will eventually win out and they will get in the playoffs and make a decent run but as you stated secondary scoring is a big problem for them.

      ———————————–

      • habsnyc says:

        I am a little surprised. I thought the Devils would fade and the Rangers would battle the Penguins for the division. Rangers seem to be going through a funk of bad bounces which should even out during the season. But, I agree about secondary scoring. Callahan has to do better than one even strength goal in 12 games.

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

    • JF says:

      Agree with your assessment of the Rangers. It is one thing to add star players to your lineup, but you have to keep the balance right. I think the Rangers got it wrong. They were a better team with Prust and Dubinsky than they are with Rick Nash. I think they lost heart as well as grit.

  72. OMG says:

    Let’s put it this way. They’re better than last year. How far they go. we’ll have to wait and see. Still 32 games to play yet anything can happen. For now lets enjoy their success.

    This team is playing winning hockey.

  73. Welks says:

    While this is a limited sample size in the last 2 games, there will be an interesting decision to be made if Gally is cleared from concussion soon. Who comes out of the line up? If this is a true meritocracy some things to consider. White is playing well since the return from the doghouse. Gally has earned a spot on one of the top 3 lines. And I thing Eller once again is showing he deserves some top line action.
    It is an unusual but nice problem to have, too much depth.
    Who would you take out of the line-up if Gally was back for the next game.

    • boing007 says:

      Armstrong.

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

    • HabinBurlington says:

      You pose a good question. I would go with Moen or Armstrong, which unfortunately would result in Eller most likely on 4th line, because he is able to benefit that line, not because he should be on that line.

      Also would be depend on where Gallagher gets put. If indeed he is re-united with Galchenyuk, then Prust must be on that line. If those two are split up, who knows, maybe Prust could play on 4th.

      However, no reason to rush Gallagher back.

    • habsnyc says:

      White’s faceoff ability might keep him in the lineup ahead of Moen.

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

    • NL Hab says:

      Agree, Armstrong would have to come out. I do like his game, however he is not contributing as much as the other guys.

      Et Le But

  74. Habitoban says:

    What a great job MT seems to be doing getting the most out of his players, both young and old. Big change over the former regime. Case in point, Benoit Pouliot, 13 points in 15 games playing under 13 minutes a game, with Tampa, but according to Habs previous management (and most of the folks on this site) not worth $1M a year and some patience. What a pity.


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