About last night …

So how did you like Carey vs. Corey?

Isn’t it a drag we see the Hawks so seldom?

Buffalo at the Bell Centre three times a year and Chicago every two years: it just doesn’t seem fair.

If the playoffs began today, your sixth-place Montreal Canadiens would face the Boston Bruins.

Know what? I’m good with that.

Carey vs. Tim is a playoff match-up this team could handle. Factor in the history of Montreal vs. Boston this time of year …

Of course, that isn’t carved in stone. Depending on what happens in Ottawa on Thursday and at the ACC Saturday night – plus games elsewhere –  the Canadiens could still be overtaken and drop to eighth.

But they’ll be playing hockey next week. And if the Canadiens get the kind of goaltending we saw last night …. well, we saw this movie last spring.

I think the team to fear in the first round is Washington …. unless the Capitals’ goaltending melts like doggie doots in the spring run-off.

Based on the way they’ve been playing lately … OK, in the last two games, the Canadiens would present problems for the Bruins, Pittsburgh and, yes, even Philadelphia.

Great goaltending, solid defence led by a spectacular rookie (really, the Legend of P.K. just gets more and more dramatic), forwards who buy into the Jacques Martin system (when does BGL’s Rebellion in the Room start?) and work hard … hey, you never know in the playoffs.

Yes, Chicago had 43 shots and dominated the last half of regulation time. The Hawks are a good team with some dazzling stars. Patrick Kane, in particular gave the Canadiens fits; and nervous defenders were playing three feet off the best NBA player in the NHL.

But Martin made an in-game adjustment. Instead of Scott Gomez’s line, Martin played Lars Eller, Travis Moen and Tom Pyatt against Kane’s line. It didn’t shut the shifty Hawk down, but the move helped.

Martin also promoted Benoit Pouliot to the Gomez line, in place of Mathieu Darche. I suspect he’ll try that combination again in Ottawa.

Tomas Plekanec, Michael Cammalleri and Andrei Kostitsyn were the Canadiens’ best line against Chicago. If Pouliot can re-ignite Gomez and Gionta, the Canadiens would have two scoring lines heading into the postseason.

•  •  •

A few of the lads in the pressbox were asking a question that fans might like to kick around today: Is Carey Price having the greatest season of any Canadiens goaltender in recent memory?

Specifically, is he playing better than José Theodore did in winning the Vézina and Hart trophies after the 2001-’02 season?

Price has appeared in a team record 71 games to Theo’s 67. Theo went 30-24-10, Price is 37-18-6.

Price’s GAA is 2.37, with a save percentage of 92.3. Theo’s numbers were better: 2.11 and 93.1.

We have to factor in supporting cast. The leading scxorer on that 2001-’02 team was Yanic Perreault with 56 points. That’s Tomas Plekanec’s team-leading total.

Perreault’s 27 goals topped the team, followed by Oleg Petrov with 24 and Richard Zednik with 22. Brian Gionta has 26, Pleks 21 and Andrei Kostitsyn 20.

The ’01-’02 defensive corps had Craig Rivet, Stéphane Quintal, Patrice Brisebois, Andrei Markov (just emerging), Karl Dykhuis and Sheldon Souray, plus Francis Bouillon and Stéphane Robidas.

Price has his buddy P.K., who is better than any of Theo’s guys. After the game last night, Martin said Subban’s game came together after Josh Gorges got hurt. Playing with Hal Gill, P.K.’s has improved his defence while continuing to be an offensive force.

Chicago’s speed and aggressive forecheck gave Roman Hamrlik problems, but I liked James Wisniewski last night. And the Paul Mara-Brent Sopel pairing was surprisingly effective.

Can you imagine this D with a healthy Markov and Gorges?

Anyway, it’s fodder for some tavern debates … now that Canadiens fans don’t have to sweat the playoffs into the final weekend.

•  •  •

Best of the Commentariat

From BoomBoomMax:

That was the game of the year. Sure watching PK score a hat trick as les Habitants demolished les Sauvages was entertaining, but nothing beats a good old thriller between original six teams… I mean, why is it that we only play Chicago and Detroit once a year? As much as I enjoy our rivalries here in the Northeast Division, I somewhat wish the Habs were playing in the Central Division… I just love Western Conference Hockey! I agree with Boone on our conference as well… Save for Washington and Tampa Bay, it seems like most of the powerhouses in the East actually rely more on Don Cherry “bullism” than actual talent to win games… Even Pittsburgh is borderline in my book. Basically I’m just really sick of goons, meat heads and cheap shot artists.

I hope the NHL finds a way to get rid of intimidation, fighting and questionable hits. I don’t have to scramble much to find valid arguments, just look at tonight’s gem… Like Mike pointed out, just 21 combine hits between the 2 clubs, no fights and not one scrum after the whistle. Was the game boring? Not one bit… But would such a tilt be voted game of the year by Bruins fans? Not by a long shot. Will it be discussed on Coach’s Corner this coming saturday? Well, Grapes might criticize PK’s “over the top” celebration with Price, but I’m not holding my breath for any praises in regards to this fast pace, skill oriented affair as all the goals were scored by “soft” players wearing visors…

The worst part is… The hypocrites who preach “respect” are usually the same morons who celebrate thug wars and desperately try to muzzle young (maybe exuberant but none the less greatly talented) rising Stars… Which brings us back to Subban. As you probably already noticed, he keeps popping up in my comment… But how can one ignore the brut force he is on the ice? I dare you to name 10 players that are more dynamic, exciting and flamboyant on a game to game basis than the Subbanator. He is right up there with Sid the Kid, the Great 8 and Tim Too Tall. And tonight, he was at his best as were all the skilled players, given a chance to play a REAL game of Hockey… The NHL would be nuts, not to encourage this style of Play, but then again, their feuille de route suggest they don’t have a clue…

Don’t you all wish we got to enjoy real Hockey every night? I sure do.


From J.Ambrose.Obrien:

I watched tonight’s game with a fellow from Budapest who recently relocated to Mtl. Unfortunately my first attempt to introduce him to hockey was the Sabres game, which I spent trying to explain that hockey isn’t usually that boring. Redemption was mine tonight. That first period alone was breathtaking. Transition-game hockey played at hyper-speed. And the only thing that kept it from being a double-digit score was the goaltending at both ends. BTW, if we ever needed further proof that this fan-ballot voting for the 3 stars is ludicrous, it came tonight. Crawford made 33 saves, many spectacular (what a glove hand!), and surrendered only one goal in regulation. Yet the three stars were all Habs. Nonsense. But I digress.

I am soooo happy that PG didn’t move AK before the trade deadline. He is back in a big way. Perhaps it was the Danish tonic known as Eller that somehow revived him. Whatever the reason, he more than deserves his place back on the top line. He orchestrated both goals with passes that were masterpieces. And while Pleks may not appear on the scoresheet, his shadowing of Toews was brilliant.

On that note, I am concerned that, other than Pleks, we don’t have a true checking line that can handle the likes of Kane et al. He was a nightmare for Eller, Pyatt, etc. all night. Halpern back at centre just might help there.

Meanwhile, Gomez and Gionta seem to be getting their mojo back, and I suspect Darche has something to do with that. His tenacious play frees G&G up to be a bit more artful. However, I have no idea why he got bumped from that line in favour of Pouliot in the third. Benny is a giant-sized dose of frustration.

I’m also not sure why DD was short-changed (no height puns please). His speed gave the Hawks defense a lot of trouble in the first. That kid really has wheels!

PK was, of course, a thrill to watch. And I do mean thrill, as in thrill-ride, with its moments of panic. I loved the shot of JM’s face after PK took that hooking penalty after he had coughed up the puck in his own end trying to make an ill-advised dipsy-doodle, and the Hawks got a couple of good scoring chances. Still, I’ll line up for that carnival ride any day.

Finally… Carey. To me, the biggest difference between CP 2010 and CP 2011 is his ability to make the key save at the key moment. Yes, the 42 saves are impressive. But it was how and when he made them. This imbues tremendous confidence in the troops who feed off his inspirational stops, much as they did last year with Jaro. There are always going to be lapses in a game. But when the opponent’s Goliath pressure gets snuffed out by one calm, cool, lightning-sharp backstopper, the team feels like a platoon of Davids.

88 Comments

  1. aussiehab says:

    does anyone remember seeing when Eller eluded a check and that chicago player launched himself into the air? this is the second time i have seen that slippery dane do that. The chicago player hurt himself on the play and i hope he is ok. its just something u dont see every day.

  2. Hali_Hab says:

    Hey boone just wanted to give you a big shout out on behalf of all the habs fans on board the HMCS Charlottetown. Your blog is printed off and is breakfast discussion for all us hungry habs fans starving for a little snippet of what is going on back home with our habs. No TV means your going to be the one guiding us through the playoff run one word at a time.
    Cheers,
    MS and below of the HMCS Charlottetown.

    p.s. on a kind of funny note if you were to come in our mess during breakfast you would have a chuckle at the up beat buzz surrounding the habs discussion at one table, while at the back the leaf table quietly drinks coffee.. hahahah!

    “After 13 years, I couldn’t accept to be number two.“
    Guy Lafleur.

  3. nek25plus says:

    The sense fun, skill and exuberance of Subban and Price is what will help this team move forward. All our young players and perhaps many of our veterans could use the same sparkle they have.

    These are the same relationships that led Chicago to the Stanley Cup. Toews, Kane, Byfuglien and Keith all play this way. The same for the Penquins with their youth.

    So, celebrate with sparkle and shine boys, sparkle and shine!

    Who cares what the rest of them think!

  4. J.J. of Turku says:

    Did Mr Boone want a suggestions for a photo of a Penguin? Here’s my proposal…

    http://www.poptower.com/penguins-of-madagascar.htm

    http://media.turku.fi/kamera1.html

  5. stw2323 says:

    The NHL needs to do something about scheduling. The Original 6 teams in the west should have at least 2 games every season against the ones from the east. No reason we should go 2 years between games.

  6. HabinBurlington says:

    So a quick glance at main first page of TSN webpage and no mention of the Habs clinching playoff spot. And then the surest sign of spring in Toronto, turn on Hockey Central on Fan590 and they are interviewing Jacques Martin. All you need to know that the Leafs are out and suddenly the village idiots (Kipper and Richie Rich Maclean) take an interest in the Habs.

  7. 100HABS says:

    Some are saying we shouldn’t play Price in the last game against TO. I disagree. I agree Price needs some rest, so give it to him tomorrow against Ottawa. You want him fresh and ready to play for the playoffs. If he doesn’t play in TO, it’ll be too many days off in a row. In the last game and with them eliminated, I think even the Make-Believes wouldn’t be so low as to try to harm Price.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Wilson and Burke have never given me any reason to believe they have any class. I don’t trust that team for a second to not try something stupid. It kills the Leafs when they are out of playoffs and we are having success. I understand the theory on him being fresh, but as I posted earlier, look at the long line of injuries (some freak) that have occurred at the cakehole of a basketball arena that the leafs suck in.

  8. DarthWade says:

    If they really complain about Subban’s celebration (and they probably will), they should take their words and shove them. I honestly don’t see what the problem is. Why can’t we have a little bit of entertainment in the NHL? Heaven forbid anyone show any excitement about scoring a goal.

    I bet if this were a Leafs player and this was the goal that got them into the playoffs, Cherry would be going on and on about how he’s simply excited because of all their hard work and he’s a good ol’ boy and why shouldn’t he celebrate?

    It’s sad that in the interview Subban already kind of apologized for it. He shouldn’t have to.

    • Nahlsy says:

      Leafs don’t know how to celebrate a goal that puts them into the playoffs, none of their current players were even in the league the last time the Leafs made it to the playoffs were they?

    • FastCentennial says:

      People just don’t like his celebration cuz he just goes past his teammates and doesn’t give them a high five or something. Looking at the goal he scored against the Flames, the one were everyone started this whole thing, i can understand why they don’t appreciate it cuz he just skated right by one of your team leaders and the player who set him up for the goal. But for the goal against the Hawks AK46 is on the other side of the ice so what is Subban gonna do (he is 21 yrs old he is making history) skate across and give AK a high five then do his cele.And don’t get me wrong i like AK i have just as much respect for him then everyone else on the Habs C’MON people its hockey! GO HABS GO CELEBRATIONS make the goals better

      Habsnation is still standing.

  9. Bripro says:

    I’m not trying to sound doom and gloom.
    The team was great. It’s encouraging for the second season.
    But does anyone agree with me that the new star selection format really sucks?
    Cami got a goal. Good for him.
    But you can’t tell me that he was better than Corey Crawford.
    They should go back to having the journalists select.
    The fans are just too biased for an honest selection…..

  10. shuttle-lemaire-lafleur says:

    P.K comes thru….Carey Price is the best goaltender in the N.H.L….it wasn’t just another game, it wasn’t just another team, it wasn’t just a winning goal, it was, what could have been their last game at home this year, it was against the defending Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks, it was a playoff clinching overtime goal….a few reasons to celebrate for the whole team !!! Keep ‘er goin’ boys…

  11. JohnBellyful says:

    I think Subban, the emerging superstar, is due for a name change: PK ‘OT’ = Peyote, the cactus that produces mescaline . Opponents find him prickly and his splendid play and late-game heroics consistently give Hab fans a high.

  12. Nahlsy says:

    “We just looked at each other, we were skating as hard as we can at each other and we were both really excited, and I buried him,” ~ Carey Price on the hit he threw at Subban after the OT goal.

  13. Shiloh says:

    Interesting that the Cherry/Milbury crowd can run off at the mouth about PK’s “lack of respect” but have nothing to say about their pets like Marchand. Marchand made a golfing motion as he passed by the Leaf bench during their last game. The Cherry gang must have missed it – but Toronto, an improving club, should make the Bruins pay for that nonsense next year.

    But their yammering has had one effect – almost nobody is mentioning PK for Rookie-of-the-Year. How is he not one of the favourites?

    • JohnBellyful says:

      Not to worry. Winning the Conn Smythe Trophy will add more lustre to his résumé. Of course, he’ll have to share it with his centre-ice bounce buddy.

  14. maiolola@comcast.net says:

    The NHL should realign the conferences so that there can be an original six division. It would take some creative thinking because you would have to pull Detroit and Chicago from the West. Maybe it could be done when the league finally starts to contract. Guess we have to wait for Bettman to go before that ship can sail.

    L Train

    • tote-road says:

      I have made this suggestion on several forums. They could re-align once every five years or so for an original 6 division. I doubt that runt lawyer who runs the league would go for it, as it might take attention away from his popular and wildly successful sun belt expansion.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Can you imagine the attendance around the league if they didn’t get as much Original 6 during the year. I mean reality is the Orig.6 carry the league for attendance purposes. The only place where it doesn’t carry extra weight, is those 4-5 locations where it doesn’t matter who plays they don’t show up.

        Having Detroit and Chicago on our schedule more, would not only make great hockey, but make our team better. With great competition comes success.

    • Bripro says:

      Here here. I’m with you.

  15. HabinBurlington says:

    What a high we are all on this morning, feels like when we beat Washington last year first round. I am so pumped about going to the dance with this team. So couple of questions/points to ponder.

    1. Is it possible Gomez had a nagging injury all year, and now is better? Cuz he has skated his ass off the past few games.

    2. None of us want to see the Habs rush MaxPac, but given Jacques started that whole ball rolling, can you imagine him back in playoffs with Gio and Gomer. Then we could keep Darche with Benny, as it seems Darche is the best match for that guy.

    3. Have to start Auld against the Leafs for a bunch of reasons, none more so than we have buried a lot of players with injuries in that Hanger on the Gardner.

    • Marc10 says:

      Spot on. I wouldn’t play Carey or PK in Toronto… for obvious reasons.

      Carey, Carey, Carey, Oi, Oi, Oi!!!

    • Max_a_million says:

      Good post.

      Funny though it’s much quieter in here than it is after a loss!?!?!

      • HabinBurlington says:

        No doubt Maxmillion, if we lost last night, this place would be a burial ground for lots of bodies. I don’t think we can overestimate what a great team victory that was. I really hope the Hawks make it to playoffs, the Canuckles out west have to be shaking in their boots at the thought of playing Hawks first round.

    • shuttle-lemaire-lafleur says:

      1. No, but I liked the way he came out last night…he has to do it on the road too, they all have to for that matter !
      2. In no way do they rush MaxPac back..the further they go,the better chance of him coming back …and coming back strong ! Darche is a good match for any line the way he’s goin’ !!
      3. Play Auld the last 2 games, rest Price…the Leafs cannot be trusted..

    • JohnBellyful says:

      Well, he’s had nagging fans. That can wear a person down.
      As for skating his ass off, remember when Gomez admitted he
      has “a pretty big lower body, it sticks out a little more.” His personal fitness trainer finally got through to him. Give that guy a pin.

  16. Jammin says:

    Jammin
    Loved the exuberance and passion Price and Subban displayed at the end of the game,purely infectious ! Liked Eller’s play and can’t help but feel the team will be stronger with Halpern back at center.

  17. shuttle-lemaire-lafleur says:

    P.K. 38pts…Carey Price 37 wins ! Cammy, AK, Plek…lookin’ good ! Pouliot ‘aint igniting nobody…no fire. Gomez…showin’ some spark with Gio…Mathieu Darche…still unsung hero in my book ! Corey Crawford put on quite a show…that kid is the real deal ! Patrick Kane…best player on the ice last night for the Hawks, what a player !! P.K. will likely get raked over the coals for his goal celebration again, frankly my dear,….I don’t give damn…!! Sure as hell would be great if we played the Hawks 3 or 4 times a year instead of once in a blue moon. That was a great game…and not just ’cause we won. This team seems to play to the level of their competition, hopefully, we can finish the last 2 games with another strong effort like last night…

  18. Norcal Habsfan says:

    Hey does Wiz have some undisclosed upper body injury? He keeps passing up shot after shot despite me screaming “shoot” through the TV screen.

    The game last night was an instant classic. You sift through all of the year’s crap to find that perfect gem of a game that your kids will remember for years. It epitomized the best that our game has to offer; speed, skill, goaltending, and drama. It brought out the best in me and made me a better fan for 3 hours. It was a new experience to watch a game where I’m not cursing and gesturing at the other team but instead found myself clapping at some of Crawford’s saves and rewinding some of Kanes moves to enjoy his artistry. For a few brief moments, I was a normal sports fan, acceptable for public consumption. I could have had some of my wife’s friends over without her being humiliated by my behavior— that’s how good of a game it was!

    But here come the Bruins. Lock the door honey. Kids.. Earmuffs.

  19. RetroMikey says:

    Gonna be fun in the playoffs, our fragile team hobbling in with injuries and upsetting the mighty big but talented Flyers, Capitals, Penguins and Bruins and make it to the Finals…Dream on I say!
    Betting we won’t make it past the first round.

    Gonna be the year of the top 4 in the Eastern Conference Standings to sip the Dom Perignon.

    We have a long way to go to reach the Cup final.

    Can’t wait to hear the lame excuses after the season what went wrong with this team besides the injuries to Markov and GOrges, which really has no impact to our offensive woes on this team .

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

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      Andrei Markov is if not the best, than one of three best outlet-passing defencemen in the Eastern Conference. He has a great deal of leadership ability that he uses to keep the blue line in order, he makes simple but effective plays and can match against any kind of offensive threat. Gorges ability to make solid defensive plays in his own end cuts down on the time the Habs get caught up in their own end. A strong defence allows for more offence.

      - I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Well stated Serious, absolutely accurate.

      • Rob says:

        I wouldn’t waste your breath. It’s RetroMikey….i think, at this point, he has as less credibility than the observer.

        The Montreal Canadiens: sporting the best AND worst fans since 1909!

        • ZepFan2 says:

          I believe Manapart could challenge Tony for top spot on the credibility meter.
          ————————————————————————
          Welcome to the newer NHL: The National Head-shots League.

      • RetroMikey says:

        Andre Markov, is the best at his game but come on, he is prone to defensive lapses as well in our end when he was healthy.
        Gorges a very good D, but not physical enough to take the punishing of big forwards up front as well.
        Would they make a difference in the playoffs? Perhaps the next playoff round we could advance but that is all.
        Our issues are with what the overpaid smurfs will do in the playoffs in Pleks, Gionta, Gomez, and Cammallerri and if they have the stanima to take the physical play in the playoffs or as Pleks said years ago ” play like little babies”.
        Highly unlikely, our Montreal Canadiens will be a disappointment in the playoffs and in your hockey pools.
        “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

    • Will Longlade says:

      The last time I checked the mighty Flyers had won only five of their last nineteen games. The Habs match up well against all of the teams you mentioned. What happened to your prediction that the Habs wouldn’t make the playoffs? Truth be told, none of these teams hope to draw the Habs in the first round. Fans that understand that hockey is a team game understand why.

  20. HAB-PROFESSOR says:

    Just for the record…. the TOEWS tripping call was good… the reverse angle clearly shows Toews stick blade pushing under Subbans skate, excellent call by the officials… and exactly the type of dirty heading into the boards cheap ‘Euro’ cowardly acts that CHERRY raves about…

    RAVE ABOUT THAT NOW CHERRY? an NHL DARLING TOEWs with a career threatening cheap DANGEROUS trip heading into the boards…

    and the imbecile coach has the nerve to complain? along with that punk TOEWS…

    Great Game,,, one of the best this year.

    Wednesday March, 9th, 2011 – the day NHL Hockey “officially” died

    • Mike Boone says:

      Whoah, easy now! Toews is a great hockey player.

      Mike Boone
      Hockey Inside/Out blogger
      Gazette City columnist
      mboone@montrealgazette.com

      • smiler2729 says:

        Mike,

        Hab fans are tired of always being on the short end.

        From the on-ice officials to “Colie” Campbell’s bunch to the PK hate and the HNIC abuse, it’s about time the shoe fell on the other foot!

        Pete

        “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

        • Max_a_million says:

          The refs are not short ending us at all. Every fanbase of every team believes this. It just isn’t true.

          Campbell having his job is a travesty.

        • Arrow77 says:

          I’m a hockey fan before being a Habs fan. Toews is the kind of players I wanna see, not the kind I want punished.

          The play deserved a penalty but wasn’t dirty. He tried to poke check and caught the skates instead.

      • Bash says:

        SO… I will be in Montreal with my son to see Game #1. (We will have to leave the rec room shrine on its own for a few days :) )

        What is the likely date for that game?

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

      • Da Hema says:

        Toews is a fine player. Would you, however, sing praises if Subban had separated his shoulder going into the boards on that play?

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Great Game, a few calls each way were chincy, but Toews is no cheap shot artist. He made a mistake, it was called and thankfully no injury into the boards. I would take Toews on our team any day of the week. He is nothing but skill, class and hardwork.

    • 24moreCups says:

      Yeah Toews is great player and isn’t known for being a dirty player, he got a penalty and thats what he deserved on that play.

      So don’t call him a “punk”, I’d love to have that guy on our team.

      • HAB-PROFESSOR says:

        I called him a PUNK because he didn’t man up to his mistake, instead he complained about Subban and the Refs making that call.
        Why didn’t he come out and say ” yeah my stick caught him under the blade of his skate and sent Subban down… mistake, but was hoping the refs didn’t call it”
        nope….

        Wednesday March, 9th, 2011 – the day NHL Hockey “officially” died

  21. Strabo says:

    Straight from the horses mouth.
    http://www.cbc.ca/video/#/Sports/CBC's_Hockey_Night_in_Canada/Coach's_Corner/1239402029/ID=1610539389
    4:47 mark
    Will the Leafs make the playoffs?

    “Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former.” Albert Einstein

  22. elured says:

    If all hockey players were grinders – would any of them be grinders? Flashy players mixed with grinders and a couple of floaters, who get benched – that is what makes a hockey team fun to watch…
    If you ignore hockey commentators – they will go away.
    Woof Habs Woof!

  23. JF says:

    That game was like playoff hockey at its best – end-to-end rushes, great scoring chances, spectacular saves. And no fighting, thuggery, or cheap shots. It was what the game of hockey should be.

    The Habs seem to be rounding into playoff form at the right time, something which many of us did not expect after the dismal performances against Boston and Wahington recently. Cammalleri and Gomez have looked better the last few games than they have all season, Plekanec seems to be back on stride, and Kostitsyn (who in my opinion has been mostly solid this year), has an impact just about every game. As for Price, he has looked tired recently, but certainly not last night. We begin to see why Bob Gainey never wavered in his belief in Price’s potential greatness, even when fans booed him at the end of the Boston sweep two years ago, even when he was being outplayed by Jaroslav Halak. Great as he was last night, however, I think Price needs at least one game off, maybe both. The last thing we want going into the playoffs is for him to be injured.

    The games I’ve watched recently underline the importance of a team getting off to a good start in the season and maintaining a solid level of play pretty much all year. It’s all but impossible to claw your way into a playoff spot in the last few weeks of the regular season. Despite key injuries and two or three rough stretches which had fans bashing the team and coaching staff, the Habs have played well enough and consistently enough to avoid scrambling desperately to make the playoffs or stumbling in on the strength of OT losses or other teams’ failures. With the roster we have and the injuries we’ve suffered, this is no small achievement, so congratulation, Habs, and here’s hoping for a deep playoff run.

  24. RJ says:

    After listening to a regular season worth of complaints about PK I am sad to say this negativity is race-oriented. As many on this board have said, when other players (white) show emotion it is GREAT. When PK does it, he is being disrespectful. What do people expect him to do after scoring the game winner in overtime to secure a playoff spot? In a league full of stiffs, PK is a blast of fresh air.

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  25. Fansincebirth says:

    Dear NHL, Buttman and Colon Campbell….

    THAT’S HOCKEY!!!! Got it???

    No head shots, no thuggery, no trying to injure other players because you ‘have history’, just hockey, plain and simple.

    Welcome to the new NHL – NASCAR on Ice

  26. RJ says:

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  27. 4m3y2j says:

    I love the new attitude that PK & Price give this team,they have a swagger that has been missing for decades.In regards to the question of why PK’S flamboyance is the target of critics compared to the actions of others one only needs to go back to the Panger Freudian slip earlier in the year.That old boy NHL posse-(Yes I’m talking to you Don Cherry and Mike Milbury and supporting cast),we know what you are thinking.By the way I am a white guy just so there is no confusion.you know these old school gas bags 1)resent the hell out of this kid and feel he should’know his place’ and the fact ta he play for The Montreal Canadiens really drives those HNIC morons even more hateful.Keep on Keepin’ on PK,you are a star of which this team has not seen since the days of Patrick Roy.

    • Max_a_million says:

      The thing is I am sure that most of them don’t even mean it. It’s not something they are deciding to think … but it’s there inside of them. It comes out in the crazy off the wall criticism of Barak Obama as well. In the long term it’s for the good at least.

  28. awesomerino says:

    This one goes out to Don Cherry, Mike Richards, Brad Marchand, and Joffrey Lupul:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r5ekG-3_fcs

    How ya like me now?

    • The Professor says:

      GREAT video. I can’t tell you how happy I am that we have PK and Price on the team. As far as I’m concerned, they are the cornerstones of the franchise and future leaders for decades to come. I hope they’re Habs for life

    • pmaraw says:

      love it! /thumbs up

    • Mike Boone says:

      Thanks for that link. I’ve posted it separately.

      Mike Boone
      Hockey Inside/Out blogger
      Gazette City columnist
      mboone@montrealgazette.com

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Absolutely Fricking Brilliant, if I could request one addition to it, would be the addition of Price’s body slam of PK last night. The friendship and fun these guys display together and skillset out of this world is phenomenal.

      When did we last have 2 youngsters that arguably could become (Price may already be) the best in the league at their position!

  29. smiler2729 says:

    What is with these hockey types, media, players and even fans that find something wrong with PK’s enthusiasm??

    Is it Habs envy? Probably.
    Is it a race thing?? I hope not but…

    Put it this way, if PK Subban were a Toronto Maple Leaf, he’d be the darling of Coach’s Corner and probably have endorsements from coast to coast. Of course he’d never get to taste any playoffs.

    I’m really at a loss to explain it.

    “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

    • The Professor says:

      I’m sort of at a loss to explain this as well.. the kid is a WJC hero and loved by the entire country, but at soon as he starts wearing a Habs jersey he’s just a bum. I guess that sorts of explains the fan/media reaction.

      As for the players, as much as I hate to say it, I fear that race may play a part in it. If Schenn celebrates a big goal, he’s just a young guy having fun. If PK does it, I think the players look at the demographics of the league vs others such as the NBA and NFL, and somehow he becomes the Terrell Owens of the NHL. Then again, Ovechkin did take a lot of crap for his goal celebration last year…

    • awesomerino says:

      “I’m a loss to explain it.”

      Actually, you’re not. You pretty much hit the nail on the head with Habs evny and racism.

      So don’t sell yourself short!

    • pmaraw says:

      he’ll win a norris one day, im sure of it!

    • NoTinFoilCups says:

      You are right on the money. Obviously they’d all love to have him on their bench. It is nothing but lame, juvenile criticism in a vain attempt to mask the envy.

      I don’t think race has anything to do with it (at least I would hope). It’s the jersey.

      • Max_a_million says:

        Unfortunately there is a long list of similar white players who are adored regardless of where they play. Then again after so many years of beating all of these talking heads, the Habs have no shortage of enemies.

    • Max_a_million says:

      If he were white he could be a Tennessee Tuxedo, and he would be the darling of Canada.

  30. pmaraw says:

    hopefully we can make it out of the 1st 2 rounds in under 14 games this year. I dont think our great cast at hio can handle all that city flip flopping again this year.

  31. Robert L says:

    Not that this game needed any more stories to make it a classic, but Marty Turco, the Hawks backup, was caught on film making a bet with a Habs fan at the Bell Centre during the game. Anyone listening to Team 990 last night might have heard a caller named Robert phone the story in..

    Clearly, Turco was just having himself some fun. Either that or he’s after Tony Marinaro’s spot in the Mise Au Jeu ads.

    Turco paid up, crossed out the word “Habs” that the guy wrote on the bill so that it read “Turco Rules.”

    Let’s see what the NHL’s fun police has to say about this!

    http://www.habseyesontheprize.com/2011/4/6/2093942/turcos-bet-costly

  32. nick says:

    Holy hell…
    Sergei Kostitsyn racked up 2 goals, and an assist last night.
    Giving the guy 49 points; 15 in his last 10 games. Not too shabby for 550K.

  33. 365fan says:

    Is anyone able to post the first coach’s corner of this year, when the prediction was that the Leafs would make the playoffs and Carey Price would fall flat on his face in Montreal?

    • RGM says:

      I’m sure it’s available in the CBC archives, but as I am boycotting that 70′s furniture upholstery-wearing buffoon since the Pacioretty incident, I say let’s all just enjoy knowing that said buffoon is going to have to eat some serious crow.

      Carey Price is All Hart! http://on.fb.me/CP31Hart
      Go Habs Go!

  34. HalifaxHabs says:

    what can you say about Price… I have a tough time believing any GM would take any other goalie over him. for a long term goaltender.

    and PK is the most exciting rookie we’ve had in, well… as long as I’ve been watching every game possible(15-20 years)

    now with playoff positioning still a factor, I say play Price Thursday in hopes of locking down 6th place, and then hopefully we can rest him against the Leafs on Saturday

  35. RGM says:

    I noticed that immediately after the win, on That’s Hockey 2Nite, there was criticism by Ken Daneyko of Subban’s celebration – he stated that at some point PK’s going to be accountable for that sort of thing. Where was this after Brad Marchand was doing mock-golf swings in front of the Leafs’ bench last week? Why is it that we’re at the point where even PK acknowledges that he’s “probably going to get in trouble again” for celebrating a goal with his teammates that had no interaction with opponents, yet other rookies who presumably should “need to learn some respect” get a free pass to outright disrespect another team?

    Carey Price is All Hart! http://on.fb.me/CP31Hart
    Go Habs Go!

    • smiler2729 says:

      Ken Daneyko is a bum.

      How the hell would he know what it’s like to celebrate scoring a goal, let alone a game winner? That bum scored about one or two goals every three seasons so he should shut the hell up.

      “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

    • avatar_58 says:

      Funny how it’s “just” Subban? Shouldn’t Price share the blame?

      Who cares anyway? Haters gonna hate. I loved it

    • bleublancrouge says:

      Because pk so much as thinks hes better than everyone…. oh right my bad he knows it and so do the rest of us… Us habs fans love it and the other end will always hate it…I’ll take highlight reels and pk-price celebrations any day over 3rd grade style whining to the media… Don’t like it? stop getting outplayed

  36. tony d says:

    It was a very exciting game to watch. When the Hawks tied it up our boys seemed to lose focus a bit and were on their heels but Carey kept the ship afloat. I was sorry to see Darche dropped from the Gomez line. He fed Gio a nice pass that could’ve resulted in a tip in goal but he did seem a tad slow out there. All in all no passengers last night and it really was playoff hockey, exciting and a battle to the end. As for BGL, even when he was in the room, he wasn’t in the room.

  37. smiler2729 says:

    Too true.

    Jacques Martin’s on at 12:20 on Rogers Sportnet Hockey Central and FAN 590.

    “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”


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