About last night … with audio

GomezIslanders

POSTGAME AUDIO: Peter Budaj | Mike Cammalleri | Brian Gionta | Jacques Martin | Max Pacioretty

I’m too tired and demoralized to write a fresh About last night …  24 hours after the last one.
So here’s what you should do:
Take the ALN that followed the win over Carolina and run it through a computer program that turns the text into the exact opposite.
That’ll describe your Montreal Canadiens’ loss to the lowly Islanders.

After the Wednesday night game, I joked with Mario Saraceno, the Islanders pro scout assigned to the Bell Centre.

“What a powerhouse,” I said, in reference to the team that had just easily shut out the Hurricanes. “You guys must be terrified.”

They weren’t.

I’m not privy to the report  Saraceno filed to New York. But I’ll go way out on a limb and guess the scout mentioned Carolina’s utter failure to pressure a Canadiens defence corps lacking four experienced players.

The Islanders didn’t make that mistake.

On L’Antichanbre, Gatson Therrien dissected the not-so-funny comedy of Alexei Emelin errors that led to Jay Pandolfo’s goal:

The Russian defenceman, who played his best game of the season against Carolina, gave up the blue line, played with his back to the attacking Islanders and pivoted too late and too far off his man. Then, with his knee on the ice and his stick on the wrong wide to block a pass, Emelin could do nothing about the Josh Bailey feed that found Pandolfo on the edge of the blue paint.

He was just as bad on the Islanders’ third goal. Emelin made a pass to no one on the left boards, initiating a chaotic zone sequence that ended with Mark Streit pinching deep to score.

Michel Bergeron, who can be caustic in his criticism of the Canadiens, expressed sympathy for Emelin. A unilingual Russian playing with a Swiss defence partner, Raphael Diaz, and a Slovakian goaltender, Peter Budaj, might face some communication issues when scrambling to execute proper coverage.

And Emelin wasn’t unique in his ineptitude. The D was uniformly soft and disorganized, Budaj was weak on two goals and the last-place team in the Eastern Conference collected two points that the Canadiens might find themselves needing in April.

The game provided fodder for second-guessing.

• Should Carey Price, who had a leisurely night against Carolina, have started again, coming off a shutout?

• Should Lars Eller have spent the first 14 minutes of the third period nailed to the bench?

• Why was Scott Gomez, who has not scored since Feb. 5, on the ice after Jacques Martin had pulled Budaj for a sixth attacker in the dying seconds of the game?

• When will Martin realize that Tomas Plekanec can’t play the point on the power-play?

Like I said, I’m tired and emotional.

It was a tough loss against a team that probably won’t make the playoffs.

And now the Canadiens face two opponents who are likely to be playing hockey in late April: the Rangers at the Bell Centre on Saturday night and Boston here on Monday.

Wonder what their pro scouts are reporting …

58 Comments

  1. Jdub1985 says:

    Somebody please kidnap JM
    They’ll never fire him

    Take him far away – I here Israel is looking for a coach

  2. HabFanSince72 says:

    You’ll note that before the game I posted that Emelin actually sucked. Everyone loves him because he hits, but he is clueless in his own end. St.Denis is actually preferable, on recent evidence.

    The KHL must be pretty bad (recall that Chris Simon was MVP one year.)

    Our D is so bad that we miss Spacek.

    Also, once again Price does not have a capable backup (Budaj is the new Auld), which means he will play most games.

    That being said we fought back, and never gave up.

    • --Habs-- says:

      The only D last night with more than a year experience was Josh. Lets face it even PK only has a whopping year under his belt and here we are complaining about performance of a crew that most of us wouldn’t hire to mow our lawns or plow our driveways if they had that little experience. Not so sure Emelin sucks that bad……Ya he made some mistakes and in my view needs to be smarter more aggressive but has nothing to do with skill. Baily should have been on his arse crossing the line. Its a question of he’s trying to do too much and not that he can’t do it. We all love PK but PK at times is a disaster as well in our zone
      and the only reason he gets away with his blunders is his offensive upswing. Right now we’re not blesses with tons of experience nor size behind the line and on many nights it will show and the only thing that will save us is if we play a trap defense which will be boring as hell to watch. If not it will be a long year with performance that resemble last night. And think of this. We haven’t met the likes of the Pens or Caps or Hawks or Red Wings, teams with real speed. If we get walked over by the Pens without their two snipers in the lineup imagine when they return.

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      That is a horifically false statement. Chris Simon has participated in a couple of KHL All-Star Games and won a shooting competition in one of them he was never named league MVP. Nature of it being a very “Have” and “Have Not” league has lower level teams holding a player like Chris Simon and him being their best, hence his inclusion in the All-Star Game.

      Ever read the listings for the AHL All Star game? Not exactly a load of elites in there but hey, everyone’s ready to throw a parade when one of our prospects is ruling that league.

      Emelin is adapting to the NA ice, it will take time for him to adjust and he’s not had nearly the rope Diaz has had despite Diaz making many more mistakes than he has, while doing nothing to give a physical element to the back end.

      – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
      SF09 on Twitter

    • HabCez says:

      Emelin is still a rookie.
      We will see how Emelin fares with more games..

      I was disappointed how Emelin played cause he stopped doing what u just pointed out is his big ‘thing’.. Hitting..

      The flaw i see in his play is his shot blocking decisions which he will learn eventually playing more minutes..
      I dont think he sucks (whatever that means to you).

      I dont miss Spacek.. just his experience.
      Budaj.. still too early join the band wagon..
      and Price should play most games.

  3. Marc10 says:

    I swear the last two years of this Jekyll and Hyde team has me going positively bipolar. ‘Capable du meilleurs et du pire’ is an apt description of a team that finds its On Switch at the very last second (often too late…) and plays to its opponent’s level.

    They play a crap team, they tune out. They play the champs, they bring their A-game. It’s gotten so bad, you can actually see it coming. And every once in a while (like during the Carolina game), you think just maybe they’ve turned a corner and they’ll play a smart road game, put in the effort and eke out the 2 points.

    Nope… Gotta make it exciting, eh! Gotta wait ’til the game’s almost out of reach to display the kind of effort that would have wrapped this baby up midway through the second… F…

    JM has unbelievable self control. I don’t know how he keeps it together watching this s*** for 3 periods. It’s truly amazing! I don’t get the whole Pleks on the point for the powerplay, or like others why MaxPac and Cole aren’t on the ice when the game is on the line. I don’t get the Gomer love or the Eller tough love. I don’t get the shunning of Emelin (although after tonight… I can kind of see it…) And I don’t get how this guy gets this team in the show year after year (he’s got to be doing something right). But the one thing that really blows me away is how JM can keep it together watching guys just hand it to a team that barely wants it themselves. Bag skate?! Boucher bug-eyed stare down? Full blown Torts meltdown?! Gimme something!

    Yep. As long as this crew is around you’ll never see Patrick Roy anywhere near this locker room… The bill to replace furniture would be in the 6 figures!

    Aaaaaaargh! Time for my meds… F…

  4. 21.273 says:

    new coach? Get Mike Babcock from the Wings.

  5. besthabschick says:

    I love that tsn is posting articles about Gomez. If he gains power money-wise that’s good for the Habs.

  6. besthabschick says:

    Who would u guys get with that money?

  7. besthabschick says:

    Ya true to everything you said. But, big BUT there is one person in charge, and that said person is giving Gomez the ice time. Why? We don’t know. During the game I was yelling at Gomez as much as everyone else, but hes getting the minutes. I don’t know if its Martin (I hope it’s not) or Gauthier (might be) but as an owner, Jeff needs to do something.

    • habsblood82 says:

      I think they will send to the Ahl before xmas. Tsn has has posted a 2nd article about gomez in 2 days maybe he’s getting all this icetime as a last chance to perform ….-2 is not very good lol . Hasn’t scored since feb 5???? If I was gomez id atleast donate a million to a charity. I wish a reporter would ask him what he thinks about his contract just to see how he’d react

    • bleedhabs81 says:

      Geoff, his name is Geoff… Not Jeff.

  8. besthabschick says:

    Really? You’re gonna say that Gomez lost the game tonight?

    • habsblood82 says:

      He def didn’t help. Only good thing I saw from him was when he tied up tavares stick and carried the puck in the O zone well. He’s not gelling with any of the habs out there. I think he might be better on another team. He’s a third line player bottom line. Keep him there. And get him off the pp!!! Omg he can’t shoot the puck.

    • habsblood82 says:

      7.4 million imagine what we could get with that money. Habs would b a power house !!

  9. besthabschick says:

    PS Boone, I love everything that you post! I recently moved to Vancouver in February (leave me alone, it’s pretty here) I went to heritage classic in Calgary and then made my way over to BC! Love the posts and the blog and I count on you to make the days when I miss the 4 o’clock games to feel like I’m at home! From the best Habs chick (seriously, I am), I know your the best :)
    Kt girl

  10. habsblood82 says:

    Gomez …. sucked! !!! His passes are always to early. And he’s so scared of getting hit. He has the worst shot on the team. Fans need to start a protest …. this has gone to far!!! Why is he still with the habs??? He’s killing this team.

  11. besthabschick says:

    Injury and illness happen. The best teams can deal with that and still win. It’s the team that wins, not one player. We all know that, we’ve all watched enough puck and played enough shinny to understand that. We have so many skilled players, and many of them are just skating on the NHL rink for the first time. But how do we win this game? Coaching. I hate blaming it on the coach. Usually for a Habs fan he is the scapegoat (him or Gomez) but really? I read a post before (in an earlier Stubbs post) that asked if Martin would be hired for any other team. Haha. Nope. We are the best franchise in the history of the NHL. What are we doing with an ex-Ottawa coach that couldn’t win anything. C’mon Molsons. Fix this.

  12. SeriousFan09 says:

    Why were our two best wingers not out for every second when we had the goalie pulled? Cole and Pacioretty are exactly what this team needs when they need to barrel in to the net for that greasy goal to save the day. JM once again is out to lunch about extra man scenarios.

  13. thirdstone says:

    At this point the only benefit that is gained from these types of games is the fact that a bunch of rookie Dmen in the habs organization are getting valuable NHL experience. Other than that, these games are complete crap and something really has to give, cause for every game the habs come out and play well, they play one like this. I think that the crappy D might be entirely the cause of this loss, so as frustrating as it is, firing the coach or making a huge trade or anything other than burrying scott gomez in a hole would be an inappropriate response. The only solution to the problem is to wait for marky and campoli, and unfortunately it seems more likely than not that the games we lose while waiting will be enough to keep us out of the playoffs this year.

  14. thirdstone says:

    double post

  15. Mike D says:

    Anyone else kinda missing Jeff Woywitka and wishing the Rags hadn’t picked him up off waivers from us? I’m all for the rookies and youngsters gaining experience, but not this many at the same time.

    – Honestly yours

  16. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …ahem, Ladies & Chicken Littles …Washington Capitals ONE …Winnipeg Avro-Arrows FOUR !!!
    …take Your meds, warm Your blankies, go to bed like good little Chicks & Chickens
    …look-up tomorrow morning …and, I will bet You will still be able to see the little white puffy clouds floating above Your heads (though, for a few of You, they may be of the pink variety :) )
    …nighty night

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY
    http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=423049

  17. Rickly33 says:

    Before you guys jump all over Gomez, he’s the only centerman that can carry the puck over the blue line. This is too frustrating, I love to see eric stall or Rick Nash on our team !!!

  18. Rickly33 says:

    Our forwards aren’t good enough, next game, count how many times cammer looses the puck on the boards it’s brutal.

  19. punkster says:

    Hey, could have been worse. Nobody injured, I think.

    Beat the Rags, then the Bs and we’re back on Easy Street, baby.

    (the great Sarah Vaughan with the rare trumpet stylings of Carmell Jones)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N9vLjLY4y5I

    ***Subbang Baby!!!***

  20. Lafrich says:

    Why was Eller benched?

    • Mike D says:

      Cuz JM’s a douche.

      Wow – guess I’m a bit tired and emotional too. Truth be told, I completely agree with Boone on his points about Gomez being on the ice at the end of the game and Pleks playing the point on the PP. Neither make any sense to me either.

      – Honestly yours

      • Lafrich says:

        Y’know..HE REALLY IS A DOUCHE. I truly enjoy watching Eller play. What did he do that was so egregious that he gets nailed to the bench??? What a nice play he made on Patches’ goal! So instead of giving him more ice-time when we need a goal, he gives him none?

        True to the statement – what a douche.

  21. Rickly33 says:

    Tired their kids, they can skate forever, huge lack of effort tonight. We play back to back in old timers, and have to go to work at 6 in the morning, give me a f&$? Brake!

  22. ponyboy says:

    That was meant to be NO MORE GOMEZ!! :/

  23. Rickly33 says:

    Jeezzzzz they lose to a bad team off a back to back game. They play to their opponents capabilities they have for a few years now in the regular season. 4kids on d, and no one caring weather they won or loss tonight, from what seen. I’m disappointed, and they will be very lucky to make the show this year, unless a deal is done. Just me!

  24. ponyboy says:

    The team looked tired, especially the dmen. Please oh please more Gomez. More of Eller and leave the lines ALONE!!!

    The Habs always seem to rise to challenge the better teams, bring on the Rangers and Bruins!!!

    Oh ya, no more Gomez on the PP and get Pleks on the half boards where he belongs!!!

  25. Trisomy 21 says:

    Oh no, we suck again!

    I was thinking “too little too late” but even too little is an overstatement of how the habs came out in the third. Something like 3 shots in the first half of the period?

    I didn’t have a chance to watch the game but what did Eller do to deserve being benched?

  26. habstrinifan says:

    Where the f……………. are my OPIATES?

  27. Matt. says:

    Kostitsyn, despite his injury continues to outscore Getzlaf, just like he did last year.

    The Canadiens knew what they were doing that year. They were taking a sniper, he just needed a little time to develop.

    Pfft who needs a big centre?

  28. Matt. says:

    sometimes it does work to bench players to light a fire under their @ss….
    But JM should try that with Gomez, for a couple weeks.

  29. PrimeTime says:

    Maybe you should have slept on that one, Boone. Not your best analysis.

  30. Shane1313 says:

    Ups and downs..we’ll be fine!
    On to the next one, Carey get back in there!

  31. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …like I said before, ‘fresh legs’ are essential for JM’s game (‘system’) …second of a back-to-back You lose that split-second to make a ‘Canes-like victory possible
    …We will be ready for the Rangers
    …character, skill, speed + rested legs, = We’ll see a better and different result than We saw tonight
    …but I hope JM keeps Gomez limited to the 4th or 3rd line with no more than 12 or 13 minutes TOI
    …I think our inexperienced D will re-group as well if JM gives Them the opportunity

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY
    http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=423049

    • Shane1313 says:

      That’s for sure!
      Still can’t get over Max. He comes back and he’s up there in the scoring race. 67 shots before tonight, that’s good for around 4th in the league. Great Kid, can’t wait for more from him

  32. badbalance says:

    WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS!!!

  33. slychard says:

    Habs should hire Bergeron as coach, at least he could make us laugh after a loss.

    • VancouverHab says:

      Now you NEVER saw Bergeron coach the NosPickers — he was one useless psychotic losing piece of ineptitude.

      JM may be be great; he may be crap — but as am NHL coach he is as far above Bergeron as Gretzky is above me as a player.

  34. Propwash says:

    Hockey is a cause and effect kind of game.

    _____________________
    Dooooooooooooooomed!™

  35. kungpowchicken says:

    Kungpow did NOT like the Habs 2 nite. Budaj was playing shinny and the habs looked like Columbus. Kungpow expects more from his habs…yeesh!!!!


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