About last night …

Fan at ACC

Hockey Inside/Out dispatched one of our crackerjack undercover agents to take a few photographs at the Air Canada Centre Wednesday night.
He came up with a good one, eh?
The statement on the jersey rather overstates the ineptitude of the home team.
But your Montreal Canadiens, who have become Kings of the Road this season, were full value for their 5-2 win.
The rock ’em/sock ’em home team tried to run the Canadiens out of the ACC with the physical approach they used to score that 6-0 stomping at the Bell Centre.
This time it didn’t work.

The Leafs had 40 hits to 27 for the Canadiens.

But the Canadiens had 40 shots. The home team had 23 – a mere four in the first period, when Randy Carlyle had his bruisers trying to cripple  everyone in a white sweater.

They play by that hoary Conn Smythe maxim: If you can’t beat ’em in the alley, you can’t beat ’em on the ice.

But the game wasn’t played in an alley. And despite the Leafs best efforts to turn it into a street fight – Colton Orr had as much ice time as Toronto’s leading scorer, James Van Riemsdyk – the Canadiens stuck to the system that has produced 13 wins and only four regulation-time losses in their 20 games this season.

“It’s encouraging for a coach,” Michel Therrien said in his postgame scrum, “when the players believe in what you’re trying to do.”

Gaston Therrien keeps offering examples of the Canadiens’ winning ways during his whiteboard segments on L’Antichambre. Therrien has his players in constant movement, with unremitting pressure on the puck. It forces opposing defencemen – especially lumbering oafs like the ones who patrol the Toronto blueline – into mistakes. It prevents the other team from gaining any speed through the neutral zone. And it cuts down on shots and scoring chances allowed.

Sometimes there are mistakes, as was the case on both Toronto goals. But for most of this season, the Canadiens have spared Carey Price exposure to odd-man rushes and extended periods of pressure in the defensive zone.

Price hasn’t stolen a game this season. You wonder how the game might have gone had Price not stoned Mikhail Grabovski on that penalty shot; but generally speaking,  the Canadiens are playing so well they don’t need their goaltender to be perfect in every game.

The Canadiens are allowing an average of 25.8 shots per game. That’s third best in the league, behind St. Louis and L.A. And that stat doesn’t gauge the low quality of  shots the Canadiens have allowed this season.

At the other end of the ice, the Canadiens are less efficient. Given the number of rebounds Ben Scrivens was coughing up, the game should have been done and dusted by the end of the second period, at which point the Canadiens had outshot the Leafs 28-12.

The most encouraging sign was the excellent play of the reconstituted David Desharnais line. Brendan Gallagher – who took the first steps toward restoring the glory of jersey number 11 – had five shots, scored the winning goal and drove Dion Phaneuf nuts. Gallagher has been a sparkplug since returning to action after his concussion and replacing Erik Cole on the DD line.

The main beneficiary has been Pacioretty, who had his second two-goal game in a week. But Gallagher’s energy and relentless net-crashing – hey, will someone remind this kid he’s 5’8″? – is opening up ice for DD. Desharnais was excellent again and won 7 of 12 faceoffs, including the one that Tyler Bozak will be crying about in the Toronto papers.

(I know his size works against him, but how the heck did Gallagher last until the fifth round of the draft after leading the Vancouver Giants in goals with 41, adding 40 assists and racking up 111 minutes in penalties? You gonna tell me there were 146 better draft-eligible juniors in 2010?)

The subtraction of Cole and addition of Michael Ryder didn’t do much for Lars Eller and Alex Galchenyuk. They were on the ice for the Clarke MacArthur goal that tied the game at 2-2, and Therrien benched Galchenyuk for several shifts at the end of the second period.

The gang on L’Antichambre suggested Therrien might want to bump Ryder up to the Thomas Plekanec line, replacing Brian Gionta. I’d be hesitant to demote the captain … especially with the Canadiens winning. The hero on that line in Toronto was Brandon Prust, whose eight hits were high for both teams.

Man, was Prust a great signing or what? The Leafs laid some hellacious hits on him – and on P.K. Subban – but Prust has that non-stop motor that takes a licking, keeps on ticking and administers a few licks of his own.

Therrien had some kind words for Tomas Kaberle, who was pressed into service, for the first time since Feb. 2, by Raphael Diaz’s concussion. Kaberle played almost 15 minutes, blocked a couple shots and was praised, by his coach, for his professionalism and dedication to keeping in shape throgh weeks of no game action.

As has been the pattern lately, Andrei Markov, Alexei Emelin and Josh Gorges (who blocked four shots) had more ice time than P.K., who was brutal on the Frazer McLaren goal that opened the scoring.

We’re not seeing the Subban we loved last season.

But nor are we watching a last-place hockey team.

•  •  •

Mike Milbury, the worst general manager in the history of the NHL, goes nuts on Alex Ovechkin:

I love this:






  1. Natrous says:

    This year’s team has me on cloud nine after 20 games – I think I need a solid dose of downer to bring me back to reality.

    Where’s RetroMonkey when you need him?

  2. John Q Public says:

    Speed kills !!!

  3. HabinBurlington says:

    The Toronto Star with their perspective on the game last night. Phil Kessel doesn’t get much love in this article.


  4. commandant says:

    Also the Leafs dressed not 1, not 2, not 3, but 4 big meathead goons last night in Fraser, McLaren, Orr, and Brown.

    How’d that work out?

    Anyone think the Habs were intimidated by Carlyle’s show of force?

    Nope, we just skated right by them and put the puck in the net.

    Skill trumps meatheads, once again.

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

  5. le_vrai_jacques says:

    pha minus neuf

  6. Chrisadiens says:

    Interestingly enough, Gionta’s goal will not count as an ENG. Scrivens was not yet on the bench and it will count against his GAA and SP. So much for “Scrivezina”. 🙂

    Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

  7. Sportfan says:

    I was never a huge fan of Ovie, but watching him struggle I feel bad for the guy. He really needs a change and maybe moved from washington. Montreal really broke the Caps a few years back and ovie hasn’t been the same scorer because of the new systems.


  8. commandant says:

    Great game last night.

    I was at the ACC, apparently the Leafs have docked the Zamboni drivers half their pay cause they only had to do half the rink last night. Great job by the Habs on pinning them deep on the forecheck all night.

    Also gotta like the buttons Therrien is pushing. He choose Kaberle over Weber, and Kaberle played a really solid game for him. Paired with Subban, he was stick checking effectively, forcing his man wide, and moving the puck quickly. He didn’t look out of place at all.

    And Patches, he told the whole city of Toronto to BITE ME with those two goals, especially the absolute snipe show at the end.

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

  9. Hobie Hansen says:

    I haven’t had this feeling often in the last 20 years but midway through the 3rd I knew the Leafs weren’t going to come back in the game. We have a very good hockey club ladies and gentlemen.

    I don’t know what it is guys but as the camera moved from Gallagher, to Pacioretty, to Subban and over to Prust; I felt the magic.

    I’m not sure a comparison to the 1993 team is fair but there is definitely something about this team. The coach and GM have been absolutely fantastic as well.

    Go Habs Go

  10. montrealtilldeath says:

    RK’s fault on the first goal Mr Boone> I don’t think so. The play the habs have used all season a simple pass around the end board where PK was positioned waiting for the outlet. Not forward into the play. Josh Gorges has areal attitude towards PK and it showed when PK tried to talk about how they as a pairing were going to handle that type of situation. JJ or Therrian better sort this out. Extremely unprofessional and certainly not the team attitude MT is trying to foster. Don’t hang PK out to dry on this one.

  11. Leafsblow22 says:

    I visit this site daily however I’m generally not in the habit of commenting… Although given that a picture of me in my jersey made it to the article header I figured I would weigh in.

    Great game last night! Nothing better than beating the Leafs in their barn! There is very little that brings me more pleasure.

    Having moved to TO in the late 90’s that Jersey was the culmination of having to put up with Leafs fans blowhardedness for many years (especially those years where the habs were relatively weak).

    Any given night I wear it out, tons of people ask if they can snap a shot of it… I guess it was only a matter of time before it landed on this site.

    At any rate, really enjoying this season so far! Let’s keep it up!

    • Lafleurguy says:

      Props to a man with guts. For the occasional Habs game I can get tickets for at the ACC, I ride the GO train. WAY too many drunks to invite the harassment win or lose so my Habs stuff stays home. My friends are not Habs fans.

      Has anyone heard any good tug jokes lately?

      “May you live in interesting times.”

      • Leafsblow22 says:

        I too ride the GO…I don’t mind the harrassment though.. It’s all part of the fun and it serves to enhance the experience. Generally my exchanges are all good natured. It’s been my experience that most Leafs Fans are more embarrassed than they are angry… If the jersey hits a nerve it’s because they are mindful of the truthfullness.

        At the same time, being a relatively large fellow at 6’3″ – 235lbs I suspect that factors into the average Leafs fans cost/benefit calculation as to how far they want to push the “harassment” envelope.

        Outside of the jersey I don’t tend to poke the Leafs fans too much unless they are being cowboys.

        Suck it up next time you go to a game – Wear the colors! There are always a sufficient numbers of Habs fans in the stands to get your back!

    • boing007 says:

      Mulch me, I’m done.

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

    • CrackerJackAgent says:

      Glad you weighed in today so this Undercover CrackerJack Agent can thank you for allowing me to get that shot of your jersey. Great game last night and lot of fun. Les Canadiens sont la!

  12. HabinBurlington says:

    I found watching the TSN highlights this morning intriguing. While the Hockey Panel did indeed give Montreal credit for winning, it was all done while discussing the apparent bad or missed calls by officials. Must pain the big boys at Bell when the team they have a minority share in beats the team they have a much bigger investment in.

  13. Habby67 says:

    Funny how Dianne Phaneuf couldnt drop the gloves with Prust yet he was going head hunting all game if some of you didn’t notice. I especially liked how he clothes lined Gallagher when he was standing at the crease waiting for a rebound.

  14. frontenac1 says:

    @burly. Sorry to hear of your loss. All the best amigo.

  15. Sportfan says:

    Very happy with last nights win! Gally is just fantastic glad we got him, Prust great signing wish we had at least another guy like Prust, but happy we have at least him. Phaneuf looked pathetic trying to start a fight then leaving when the chance came. Nothing like watchs the laffs go after the small guys and when one big guy fights back they are no where to be seen.

    How many games this season has price had 30 plus shots against him?


  16. Saltwater Cowboy says:

    I am tough on Carey Price because I love the kid so much & I want him to be the best!

    He made a very nice right pad save when it was 2-2 in the 3rd. If the Loafs would have scored on that it would have been game over maybe.

    I like my crow with a side of fries!

  17. 123456 says:

    So not a lot of negatives to talk about huh?

    Here is one – PK and Georges both do not look as good as they have in the past – I’ll add Markov in there too. Why?? Well these guys used to step up and stop opponets, you noticed them all over the ice didn’t you?? So let me draw to this point: So when the Habs used to give up more goals the defense looked better (IMO this is true an dmany this season have said these three are not up to par).

    There is an answer – the forwards are WAY better than in the past at helping out on Defense. This makes life easier for the Defense and they do not stick out as being great players.

    This system so far is working. This is what I tell my kids and it’s a very very simplified version of MT’s system: No matter your position on the ice (LW,C,RW,LD,RD) when the other team has the puck you are all DEFENDERS.

    • krob1000 says:

      The stepping up thing is a risk reward thing..they still do it whent eh time is right…if they manage their gaps and give the time for the forwards to track back then there is no risk and the backpressure should reduce the oppositions options…then they can easily keep them to the outside…workin like a charm.

  18. Stephen York says:

    Thoroughly impressed with Therrien’s game plan – Carlyle played right into it, overplaying Orr and the other goons.

    Gallagher is a beast, scoring the winner and getting under Phaneuf’s thin skin.

    Loved seeing Phaneuf (and his visor) shy away from Prust’s challenge to fight.

    Grabovski’s lame penalty shot attempt – karma’s a bitch!

    Komisarek a healthy scratch again (giggling)!

    I’d like to see what Ryder can do with Plek on the first line. I know Gio’s captain, but he hasn’t contributed much thus far. Instead of benching him for his lacklustre play (as the Habs should have done in Gomez’s horrendous final two seasons), put him in with Eller and Chucky. Nothing to lose in trying.

    Here’s my fantasy for the day: PK and Gionta (and a pick?) for Ovechkin, clearing the “C” for Prust. Ovi clearly wants out of Washington, and would be happy having his buddy Markov as a teammate. Could be reborn in Montreal, although he may like Montreal’s “perks” a bit too much, a la AK46 and Hamerlik. Not sure how such a trade would affect the cap, moving forward, and who would fill the 30 minutes PK puts in…Thoughts? Feel free to rip me a new one if you disagree 🙂

    Two of Gainey’s smurfs gone, one to go.

  19. 44har48 says:

    I think we are seeing the real 2nd round PK Subban on a better team than a 15th place team now. I think most of us knew he was simply not as good yet as most gushed, but please, let’s not go to the other end of the spectrum, he will be the real deal. He needs to continue to mature and learn, just like all young dmen, and now that we have a real team that is competitive, he can.

    His salary is perfect for where he is at, and should alleviete any stress that comes with having to live up to a big contract. Just keep playing, move the puck, and try not to turn it over.

    • Habitforming says:

      Pk looks gun shy to me. He’s a shadow of the player he was last year and you can see it in his game when he rushes the puck or looks to close the gap on a rushing forward at the blueline. Maybe I just watch him to closely, but it seems like he is so afraid of making a mistake that his real game and confidence is being pushed to the back burner.
      I know it fits the current style of the Canadiens to do nothing rush wise from the defense, but I’m sure Erik Karlsson wouldn’t be the player he is today under these rules either. MT would have wrecked that kid.

  20. HabFanSince72 says:

    Kessel was horrendous last night wasn’t he?

    Even on that final goal – what was that?

    Has he been bad all season or was he just having an off night?

  21. WindsorHab-10 says:

    I hate Mike Milburry but he was right on with his criticism of Ovechkin.

  22. Strummer says:

    ” Things are different here now- we’ve got leadership”

    Carey Price in response to PK Subban on the latter’s return to the team, from Episode 2 of 24CH

    (I’m paraphrasing)
    “It’s just an opinion – I could be wrong”

  23. Habsrule1 says:

    Very happy with the win. another dominating performance where it’s hard to pick out someone who had a bad game. I think Ryder will be fine as the line gets to know each other a bit better.

    Wanted to weigh in again on the # 11 retirement thing. Not sure if I softened or just didn’t express myself right yesterday. I would have no problem with the Habs retiring # 11 for Saku for all that he did, as a player, and as a person….but I just don’t think they will.

    Go Habs Go!!

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

    • 123456 says:

      I am a huge Saku fan, he was my favorite Hab for a long time and he is my favorite past Hab, but I do not see the need to retire his number.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Saku was here for a long time, but he isn’t remotely retiree material. Good guy, decent hockey player.

      Shutt, Lemaire, Lapointe, Laperriere are all in the hockey hall of fame, but not retired.

      The barrier to getting your number retired by the Habs is much higher than getting into the Hall. (We’re not the Leafs.) And Saku will not be getting into the Hall of Fame. Not even close.

  24. HankHardball says:

    Aside from the Habs on Sunday, the Bruisers are in the 1st week of 4 weeks in a row, of 4 games per week.

    This week though the end of March, the Beantowners play 20 games in 35 days, 11 of them on the road.

    • Chuck says:

      Good thing for them they got all of that extra practice time at the beginning of the season!

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

  25. shiram says:

    Man I’m so sad we did not get some 4 minutes goons for last games, Habs got destroyed!!!
    Bring back Laraque!!

  26. BJ says:

    The Habs put on a hockey clinic last night vs a clinic for the meatheads. Great game by the Canadiens and that restores credibility to hockey played the way it should.

  27. HabinBurlington says:

    Obviously this season is different/weird with the lockout, but when was the last time the standings looked like this on the final day in February?

  28. boing007 says:

    To Mike Boone: that non-stop motor that takes a licking and keeps on ticking was the Timex watch. Tsk, tsk.

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

    • Clay says:

      No, it was my girlfriends…never mind 😉

      ☞ The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. ~ Richard Feynman ☜

  29. jrshabs1 says:

    there’s a lot of whining going on in leaf land today.. it’s typical..refs and what not. I don’t hear anything about the offside not called on McArthurs goal…the play was offside by at least a foot. good day to be a Hab fan….I still think the team needs a legit heavy weight.

    Go Habs Go!!

    • The Cat says:

      The team needs a crazy MFer. I thought Ryan White would be that guy but he gets reprimanded when he does what he SHOULD be doing.

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

      • Cal says:

        So, he should do like Mike Brown and help his team lose?
        There’s always a game to take revenge, so to speak. Like, next preseason when 2 points don’t matter.

        • The Cat says:

          Thats the habs problem right there. Too much of a the 2 points matter too much and worrying too much about PPs and PKs attitude. When it was 4-2 or 5-2 it would have been a good time for a cheap shot. You dont have to be gentlemanly about it and challenge someone to a duel.

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

      • Habsrule1 says:

        Should be doing? What he should be doing is helping the team win, not taking selfish penalties cause he didn’t like how hard he was checked.

        Go Habs Go!!

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

        • The Cat says:

          He was avenging his captain. Everyone in the media should apologize to White. They complain that the habs are chicken, but then they crucify the guy that tries to do something about it. So he got a penalty, the sabres scored…It happens.

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

          • Bash says:

            No one who plays pro hockey is “chicken”.

            The goons are brought in when you do not have enough skill to keep up. And no one has proven that goons sell tickets! (see PLAYOFFS)

            The good news is that we are seeing more attention paid to the Clarkson, Prust, Clowe type player rather than the Carcillo, Orr, Brown, Scott idiots.

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

          • Habsrule1 says:

            Actually the last time he took penalties was for over-reacting from a check he received, Started hammering away on the guy.
            Had nothing to do with protecting a teammate.

            Go Habs Go!!

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

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Ref Shmef.

      They were dominated from start to finish.

  30. Ian Cobb says:

    I am now a believer in Michel Therrien, I was not sure as we went along in the schedul, but I wanted to get past this game in the schedul to give a chance to of this team to fall of the rails. But guess what? this team has bought what Therrien is selling and so have I.

    Both the fantastic General Manager and Therrien are definitely on the same page, and with the team now on the very same page, we can not miss having winning hockey back in Montreal.

    Great feeling this morning! Bring on those Penguins!!

    • The Cat says:

      Like I said below, last night meant very little, leafs were destined to lose that game. Saturday will be the real test, the habs should have no business winning that game. If the habs win Saturday, you can say the team is going places. Conversely, it wont be a disaster if they don’t win.

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

  31. HabinBurlington says:

    And props to the person holding that sign behind Fonzie, that is priceless.

  32. 24 Cups says:

    How many times do you get to say that Mike Milbury was right?

    I remember reading at the time of the draft that some people thought Malkin might eventually become a better choice than Ovechkin. Eight more years at 9.5M a season. Ouch.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Who would have ever thought this would happen to Ovechkin? It is shocking to me how this guy has changed over the past few years. Enjoy your day today Steve!

  33. topher5468 says:

    Great win, but on another subject, I despise Mike Milbury, but IMO,He got the Ovechkin thing 100% right. That highlight was awful.

    “It’s not an obsession, It’s a way of life..”

  34. NLhabsfan says:

    Milbury is still bitter towards Montreal.I guess the 70’s of Habs winning scarred him forever.I can hardly stomach the fake analyst and blowhard.

  35. HabinBurlington says:

    Interesting to note that the only real on ice injuries the Habs have suffered this year are all Concussions. I wish Bourque and Diaz all the best, and hope Gallagher can avoid another.

  36. HabsFansince49 says:

    I wonder what the Habs have to do to keep this site (HIO) a bunch of happy campers. Let’s face it – we totally outplayed and outclassed the Leafs. Lots of positives – Gallagher, Max-Pac, Proust (great trade), the potential of the Ryder, Eller, Galchenyuk line, Therrien outcoaching Carlyle, and even Kaberle didn’t look too out of place.

  37. rhino514 says:

    Where is this coming from that Gorges has been disrespectful to PK subban? Of all the crazy things one hears on here.
    Why? Is it because he mentioned, once, that the players prefer not to having to keep answering questions about players who are not around?

  38. rhino514 says:

    ….This thing where it´s the good o´Canadian way to be hitting people all the time. The whole culture has to change. The leafs and their coach (and the bruins) are not seen as thugs. No, it´s the habs who are seen as soft. That´s the tragedy.
    Granted, this kind of stuff isn´t done in the playoffs because too much is at stake, but what if we start to go into a slump because Bourque and Diaz were taken out by cheap shots?

    • The Cat says:

      Good post. Theres many things in life that arent fair like “nice guys finish last’. ‘only the good die young’ that make us question what kind of place is Earth anyway…Maybe we should all give Buddhism a try?

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

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Two years ago, the Bruins were given a free pass for that style of play in the playoffs, league hasn’t looked back since. And make no mistake it was Canadian Hockey that developed “Finish your Check”. Seems to me I recall this starting with Junior team as a way to slow down the Russians, nowhere in the rules does it say it is allowed to hit a player after he has finished playing the puck.

  39. HabinBurlington says:

    Morning Everybody, what a win last night! Now that is how to enjoy a Habs/Leaf game in the GTA!!

    Gallagher is an absolute beast. Funny how the Leafs had no answer for this little sparkplug.

  40. frankcasting says:

    I’m a PK fan, but his game is really being exposed under MT’s system. He gives up on plays like some beer-leaguer at least once a game, and he looked utterly foolish on the Leafs’ goon’s goal. He had time to react to Gorges’ inability to secure the puck, and go one stride back to where he belonged, between the play on the boards and in front of the net to cut off the goon, but chose not too. He’s playing like a sulky baby. Good thing the rest of the team has their poop together.

    Loving the Habs since 1965

    • CanadienBoy says:

      To me PK thinking to much ,scare to make a mistake and second guessing himself

    • Cal says:

      He’s playing exactly like a young Dman. There will be mistakes as he learns to focus his game and minimize errors. He is getting better and better as he learns that he doesn’t have to do everything.

      • commandant says:

        Exactly Cal. Even Markov and Lidstrom, and every defencemen in NHL history made a mistake or two along the way. Seems some want to focus on one mistake by PK last night, and not the rest of the night where he controlled a lot of the play and really helped the team keep the leafs pinned in their zone all night.

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

  41. Habfan10912 says:

    Will miracles ever cease? Did Mike Milbury actually make sense?

    A win for Hugo

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Hey bud appreciate you giving Hugo some love today, CHeers Friend. Looks like he had some pull afterall eh!

    • dano58 says:

      Milbury never makes sense he just rants like a child. He makes Cherry look normal and smart sometimes and that is hard to do.

      GO HABS GO!!!

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

    • Clay says:

      He did…He still sounded like a dick doing it though.

      ☞ The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. ~ Richard Feynman ☜

  42. remi_10069 says:

    Man was I happy when Gallagher scored, I thought we were going down. Reffing was horrendous as usual, penalty shot? I just about tossed my Stella through the big screen.

    I realize we beat the bullies but if we don’t get a nuke in our lineup, someone is going to get hurt. Honestly, Brown didn’t deserve a major for his hit but he did deserve someone at least attempting to break his face.

    What is wrong with Ryder? Oh ya, he can’t skate.

    What is wrong with PK? Anyone?


    • The Cat says:

      I think Price stopping the penalty shot was huge. It set the tone for the rest of the game. But theres not much to draw from the game, the leafs were in a slightly tough schedule spot (2 road gamess, 1 home, before going back on the road) and coupled with the revenge factor, were pretty much destined to lose. Thats why I wanted to see retribution on Orr.

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

      • remi_10069 says:

        I’m with you but how? Unless you send Karbele out to wack him in the face with his stick, we don’t have anyone to take down Orr. That’s why we need one…


    • rhino514 says:

      I think the team should have the option on wether to take a penalty shot or have a power play. If a guy who doesn´t score much is hauled down, and you have a good PP, why not go for the PP?

  43. Lafleurguy says:

    What a night! In case the exhilaration dies down, we can chip in with more tug jokes.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  44. Shadows says:

    Was Galchenyuk really benched at the end of the second? I know Moen was on for a bit, but it did seem like a really slow line change… I REALLY HOPE MT didn’t bench him, I hate stuff like that.

    As for the Gorges PK thing.. didn’t really see that, and if it did happen well… go PK. I too never bought the Gorges for captain idea. Personally I always thought Plekanec should have got captain when Koivu left.

    Oh well, don’t bench the awesome rookie and listen to PK!!!!

    “But I’ll tell you what hermits realize. If you go off into a far, far forest and get very quiet, you’ll come to understand that you’re connected with everything.” ~ Alan Watts

    • Lafleurguy says:

      Maybe some line matching. I thought Prust got more ice time than he was listed for. McArthur was uncovered, so a Colesian lapse in coverage by Galchenyuk’s line.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

    • The Cat says:

      I believe he was benched.

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

      • Shadows says:

        Hmmm, that is pretty lame if it was a benching. Especially when Galchenyuk is +7 on the year. I’ll go with “line matching” so I don’t get angry at the situation. xD

        “But I’ll tell you what hermits realize. If you go off into a far, far forest and get very quiet, you’ll come to understand that you’re connected with everything.” ~ Alan Watts

    • Chris says:

      If Galchenyuk was briefly benched, he earned it. He had some very questionable decisions on a couple of shifts in the second.

  45. Habfan10912 says:

    Good Morning all! It looked like Leafs were more interested in “hits” then winning a hockey game last night. Our Habs did not back down and continued to put pressure on them all night long. No stupid penalties. As near perfect of a road game as a team can play.

    A win for Hugo.

  46. The Cat says:

    The habs won but I’m disappointed with Therrien in that there was no revenge on Orr.

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

  47. HabsSoCalManFan says:

    Yeup! In so tired of the P.K. bashing and gorges love! Gorges, shows that he’s kind an ass towards P.K. consistently! And, it was he that cost Habs the 1st goal! Not to mention, Gorges has been on the ice for way more goals against, than P.K. And P.K. Has been in ice for more goals!
    Mr. Gorges needs to take a bite of some humble pie, shut the fuck up, and learn how to respect all of your teammates! He is not a leader, he seems more like whiner! Just sayin!

  48. Bash says:

    A little line tinkering would be a good idea. Gionta will play the same game without Pleks and is not a scoring threat but he can still skate. Galchenyuk needs someone to fly with him.

    Eller, Galchekyuk, Gionta
    Pleks, Bourque/Prust, Ryder
    Desharnais, Gallager, Pac
    White, Prust, Moen (Arm)

    On another note Kaberle looked very good for someone who hasn’t played but we missed Diaz.

    What is the ETA for Bourque and Diaz?

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

  49. CharlieHodgeFan says:

    Unfortunately, the pucks kept bouncing onto the sticks of Canadiens players after thundering hits by rapid leafs skaters. The officials kept dropping the puck onto the soft home ice, for God’s sake, creating an unfair advantage for the habs. In fact, all of the habs goals hit the back of the net, which is a clear sign of bias. The referee has a French name. On the Gionta open netter, he shot the puck, where an appropriately sized goon would have carried it in between his teeth. And did you see how many times the linesmen had a chance to lay a hit on a Montreal smurf, and held back? Morally, that was a Leafs win, and as soon as we trade Scrivens one up for Crosby, it will be okay.

    Sorry guys, I’m going for a job at Hockey Night in Canada.

  50. rhino514 says:

    If indeed Colton Orr´s right hook has put Bourque´s season in jeoprady, this is a perect illustration of why the NHL is still in the dark ages regarding discipline.
    A team shouldn´t feel it can just send it out its goons and punish you if it does not have the talent to beat you. This is currently the situation we have.
    The answer does not lie in getting “tougher” as a team. This makes it far worse and preserves the culture of an eye for an eye where everyone comes out losing. Getting more guys like Bourque on the team because they are physical players, which is the answer many on this commentariat (who are always labelling our team as too “soft”)propose , is not the answer to imrpoving the team. On the contrary, these types of physical players are more likely to get hurt, since the coach, fearing intimidation from the other team´s goons, will make inspirational speeches about defending our own which induces these guys to get into tangles which they should have no business being in.
    The league has to dish out serious punishment, not a 5 minute major, or even 3 or 4 four games, to thugs who try to take out productive players from the game.
    I think the coach should be held accountable. It doesn´t matter if a guy like Orr gets suspended for 10 games, that will do nothing to make their victims healthy again, who possibly will have long term health issues to boot.
    It is the coach who, by letting these guys go out and not reprimanding them, is sending a subconscious, but don´t be mistaken, very clear message that he wants to turn the tide of the game by using goonery.
    This game should be about who has the best hockey skills, But the truth is, the north american public still won´t let go of the agressive culture of our game. And the league will not let go because they feel without fights and borderline hits, the game isn´t fun enough to watch.
    But if they are really smart about it, they can keep the clean check in the game, and punish things which have no place in the game. These things aren´t nearly so difficult to differentiate as Bettman says they are. If a thug hurts a player who isn´t another thug, hand out punishment to the coach and to the team. Then you will see how fast such things come to an end.
    Likewise, all RECKLESS plays, (especially for players with precedents, like Cooke, who are masters at camouflaging their intended purpose when they hurt a player), should be punished if they result in another player getting hurt long term.
    Karlsson out, Bourque, out, Malin out. The winner right now is the last team standing, not the best team. This isn´t hockey

    • Cal says:

      Habs exposed a petty coach with no answers last night. Bozak is still whining and Kessel was invisible. Has Carlyle lost his skilled players already? Is Phaneuf still a dog? Is Mike Brown just about the most stupid hockey player in North America? These and other burning questions (I dropped my lighter on the keyboard) may have been answered with this 5-2 Habs victory.
      Ryder looked slow last night. He’ll need a couple practices to know what Eller and Chucky are trying to do. All in all, an excellent game by the Habs and a not so good one from the laffs. Will the laffs begin their annual swoon? We are near the end of February, so, in a word, yes.


    • Bash says:

      When Brown was given 5 and a game it effectively prevented what would have most certainly been another goon show…TO given license to play that style. Brown had Gorges in a compromised position with no chance to defend himself and still pushed him into the boards from behind. That could easily have resulted in a serious injury. The point is INTENT whether an injury occurred or not.

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

  51. Captain aHab says:

    The Leafs had half of their hits before the major to Brown where the Habs scored….20 in the first and 20 the rest of the way….a successful PP is just as much a deterrent as a guy who drops the gloves. I think it’s likely more of a deterrent until games get completely out of hand.

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

  52. doug19 says:

    For sure Carlyle is not coach of the year!

  53. calvee123 says:

    So, like the caption on the guys sweater. We had a staunch Leaf fan here where I work. When he moved on the crew bought him a Leafs jersey. The lettering they chose to put on it read : LOSERS SINCE 67. Pretty funny, we all laughed hard at that one.

    On to the game tonight. I never got to see much of it really. Just the highlights and a bit of the 2nd period where Pacioretty scored his first of the game. It seems like this team really knows how to play. They really are playing good. Playing good enough to win most games, even the ones they lost with the exception of the 6-0 blowout. I am really impressed with their compete level. I know it is a game of breaks at times and they come and go. Im glad that that they were persistant with the offence to get ahead to stay in the third.

    Man I hope they can play this way till the end of June….

  54. Timo says:

    Why can’t anyone put Grabovski out of his misery once and for all?

  55. Timo says:

    Holy molly, did Habs score 3 in the third?

    Habs hung on there and capitalized on leafs brain dead plays. However, this team still lacks finishing – i mean, how many open nets and odd man rushes do you have to get before you start putting pucks in the net? This game (much like the Ottawa game) should have been 7 or 8 – 2.

    But anyway, we still owe laffs a humiliating defeat with a couple of concussions and blown up knees for desert.

    I don’t know about good folks here but my memory of Ryder was that he wasn’t good in his own end. Maybe I am wrong. But anyhoo… he was solid in the defensive zone and otherwise I haven’t noticed him much which I suppose is not a bad thing.

  56. Bun E. Laroque says:

    Prust played another great game. Gallagher is the smallest guy on the team and hes in the dirty areas the most often. These two guys exemplify the difference between this years and last years edition of the Habs. So glad they beat the leafs tonight. I just hate them.

  57. habfan11 says:

    Solid game for the road, here are my burning thoughts, I don’t like Eller and galchenyuk on the same line, not sure why tho, Ryder looked okay he could be good with #27 time will tell. And finally I’d like to see tinordi called up.

    #11 for the rafters! Guess that’ll have to wait!

  58. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …is everyOne happy now ?

  59. Stevie.Ray says:

    Is Stamkos the modern day Brett Hull?

  60. theox_8 says:

    As if that was PK’s fault on the first goal , Gorges was totally to blame and to think people on here want him to be the next captain. That’s just confusing.

    • Timo says:

      Yeah, I am not impressed with Gorges this year. He is pretty big guy, 6’2 I think. He always gets hammered, coughs up the puck quite often, just looks a step behind? Is there an undisclosed injury?

  61. Chuck says:

    The Leafs can complain all they want about that faceoff, but they were also offside on the play leading to their second goal. And they also gave Colon Orr the same amount of ice time as their leading scorer… so it’s pretty tough to have any sympathy for them.

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      They were given a penalty shot when they were down by one for heaven’s sake…blame Grabovski…

      “You’re always, always, always looking to make your team better. Always.”- Marc Bergevin

    • 25insight says:

      enough. stop trying to justify a decisive win from the habs, positive or negative. a win is a win. move on to next game. big games ahead.

      • Clay says:

        Enough! Stop telling other posters what to think.

        ☞ The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. ~ Richard Feynman ☜

  62. HabsProf says:

    It pains (and shocks) me to admit this, but Milbury is right (hey, even a blind man will hit the target if given enough shots). I didn’t see the entire game, but Milbury made some valid points on the highlights he was showing. Ovie is still an elite player, but his name no longer comes up in the “who’s the best in the world” debate.

    They brought their f____ing toys with them!

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      Nice avatar…

      “You’re always, always, always looking to make your team better. Always.”- Marc Bergevin

    • Jim Edson says:

      Strange how the decline started coincident with stepped up doping tests 3 years ago?

      Not implying anything but the coincidence is remarkable!

      What does the Commissioner of the NHL do?

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

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

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

    • boing007 says:

      Milbury Doughboy.

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

  63. AceMagnum says:

    Scribbles is like…. the worst goalie ever.

    Rask for Raycroft hahahaha

  64. AceMagnum says:

    Never been so glad to have been wrong.

    Okay I’m sold. Habs are for real this year

  65. peasoup says:

    Therriens’ system just proved better than Carlyes’ system, plain and simple. The Habs are the better hockey club without a doubt, hopefully this statement of a game silenced some fools!

  66. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Carlyle crying about the faceoff with Bozak & DD. Your team was never in this one numb-nuts. Give the other team some credit jerk.

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      He played a goon on one of his best lines the entire night. Therrien must have been laughing…

      “You’re always, always, always looking to make your team better. Always.”- Marc Bergevin

  67. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    Sorry Mr. Boone. Completely disagree with you about the first goal being PK’s fault. It was clearly Gorges who messed up. He was the first man in on the puck dump. All he had to do was screen off Brown and push the puck along the boards behind the net where PK was going to pick it up. Gorges failed and let a 4th liner pull the puck into the slot where PK unfortunately vacated thinking the puck would be pushed along the boards.

    What was worse was Gorges’s reaction to PK on the bench. PK was trying to talk to him and he just ignored him while he sulked. That is not professional and does not display any leadership. It looked JJ had to step in. JJ said something about the play and split them up. If Gorges can’t talk with a teammate, how is he considered “captain material”? The real leader on this team is clearly Prust.

    “You’re always, always, always looking to make your team better. Always.”- Marc Bergevin

    • AH says:

      Completely agree about Gorges and him being so called “captain” material…never sold on that. The last thing you want is your captain getting rag dolled all day like he does. I also didn’t like his attittude/comments about PK, when he was coming back to the team, that imo showed he is not Captain material.

  68. WindsorHab-10 says:

    A statement game against the Laffs that the Habs passed with flying colours. Good job.

  69. krob1000 says:

    Habs have 29 points….Columbus on pace for 31…there goes any chance of Seth Jones….

  70. AH says:

    Boone, Brandon Prust is the Habs MVP right now. If Gionta moves on, or gets moved, Prust should get the “C”. This guy displays leadership with a capital “L”! Great signing.

    • lavie says:

      MTL girl rules!!! Hope to sign more “Prust”s. 😀

      Good night, fellow Habs fans!

    • Mike Boone says:

      Isn’t he a peach? Props to Bergevin and his staff who saw what this “role player” could bring to the team.

      Mike Boone
      Hockey Inside/Out blogger

      • Jim Edson says:

        Stunning the results when you invest in scouting and move out the most inept pro-scout in recent memory?

        AKA the Goat

        What does the Commissioner of the NHL do?

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

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

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

    • HaBo says:

      If he keeps it up he’ll play himself onto the 2nd line permanently.
      What a player he’s becoming!!
      Now MB, find a way to get Talbot here.

  71. Say Ash says:

    First place without a guy in the top twenty in scoring. I love it.

  72. Say Ash says:

    Budaj getting a weekend start?

  73. The Jackal says:

    In other news, Saku scores his 6th, good on him!

  74. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    MB makes another move! Where did he pick up Leafs Blows from? Is he the next enforcer?

    “You’re always, always, always looking to make your team better. Always.”- Marc Bergevin

    • krob1000 says:

      leafblowers are cheap at canadian tire in february

      • Jim Edson says:

        Real Pro Leaf-Blowers!

        Cheaper on Yonge Street!

        What does the Commissioner of the NHL do?

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

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

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

  75. Muckbringer says:


    Conan: Almost 20 years of pitiless cumber! No rest, no sleep like other men. And yet the spring wind blows, Subotai. Have you ever felt such a wind?
    Subotai: They blow where I live too. In the north of every man’s heart.
    Conan: It’s never too late, Subotai.
    Subotai: No. It would only lead me back here another day. In even worse company.
    Conan: For us, there is no spring. Just the wind that smells fresh before the storm.

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