Gainey honoured … by the wrong team

Columbus Blue Jackets used the Bob Gainey playbook to embarrass Canadiens on their general manager’s big night.

The visitors played tough, disciplined defensive hockey. Columbus managed just 22 shots on Carey Price, but three of them went in.

At the other end of the ice, Pascal Leclaire made 31 saves to record his nith shutout of the year.

The 25-year-old native of Repentigny was the game’s first star, but the sad truth was he was minimally tested.

Canadiens did not get bodies in front of Leclaire. Few shots were directed from the slot. Leclaire controlled what few rebounnds he allowed, and his defence – led by ageless Adam Foote – made sure Canadiens could not mount anything resembling sustained pressure.

The game was dreadfully boring. With a 2-0 lead 10 minutes in, Columbus spent the next 50 minutes frustrating the Canadiens.

Dump-ins didn’t work. The Blue Jackets pounced on them and quickly launched transition.

The Canadiens’ power play went 0-for-6, including a 5-on-3 for 1:10 in the second period.

As I ruefully write these words, Dave Stubbs is in the losing room, collecting clichés and rationalizations for audio that will be posted on the main site.



  1. Mike Boone says:

    I’ve always attributed my own difficulties with the language of Molière to my New Brunswick birth. Been trying to wrap my tongue correctly for 54 years …

  2. Chuck V. says:

    I’m reading that book at the moment. Probably the highest praise you can get from Dryden.

  3. ganderhab says:

    Point taken….The bye’s will do fine

  4. Mike Boone says:

    I’ve always attributed my own difficulties with the language of Molière to my New Brunswick birth. Been trying to wrap my tongue correctly for 54 years …

  5. Ali says:

    Mike was just pointing out, since he’s there, that the group was struggling with pronouncing that part of the song…

    take it easy there man!

  6. mrstewart61 says:

    Àre you saying `who cares` about what people from down-east think?

  7. the_vipah says:

    Who cares?

  8. Chorske says:

    I consider myself a pretty athletic guy, and I have trouble with curling. I’ve tried it several times, had a blast, ended up on my ass more times than I care to admit, and hit the button maybe once in a couple hundred tries. Anyone who can do what these people do, at the elite level, is a bona fine athlete as far as I’m concerned.

  9. Erik says:

    PUHlease womens curling LOL it’s not even that I hate curling I just dont think of it as much of a sport and maybe not one at all. I guess maybe if one likes to watch lawn bowling, darts and poker……

    I also think of how non-existent the crowds are at these events all the empty seats. I remember them having one of their “big” tourneys in Hamilton and the attendance was sparce or non existant.

  10. Sbah Reverof says:

    “If I could be a forward, I would want to be Bob Gainey.”
    -Ken Dryden, from “The Game”

    ’nuff said.

  11. The Teacher says:

    Conklin got a shot already in Edmonton and couldn’t carry the ball. I compare Conklin to Patrick Lalime.

  12. ZepFan2 says:

    I used to see Rejean Houle at the Carb (bar that was in alexis nihon plaza) all the time.

  13. Cable Guy says:

    Just came back from a tour of the Bell center 30 minutes ago, lots of people buzzing around. We went into the Montreal alumni lounge, guess who walked in, Rejean Houle.

    Tonight’s game is going to me amazing, I can’t wait.

  14. Rogie30 says:

    Big center, did somebody say big center? LMAO.

  15. Samantha says:

    I have a feeling that Yann Danis might be OUR Conklin: Life-long minor leaguer that we won’t bother giving a chance to but could very well be an excellent goalie.
    I love Halak, huge fan and this could probably apply to him too, but the difference between our 2 is that we often hear ”Brink up Halak”….never ”Bring up Danis” Poor guy.

  16. Richard says:

    JT (and Mike for posting it),

    I think the idea to donate $23 to the Gainey foundation is a wonderful gesture.

    On the day of his jersey’s retirement, how better to honour him than to donate to a cause that honours his late wife and daughter.

    Gainey has always given me the impression that, as much as he will feel pride for what he will be given tonight, he would feel that much more pride to know that he is giving. We can all help with that.

    Thanks for the idea.

  17. moser17 says:

    Conklin is awesome this year. I feel for Fleury when he comes back. Therrien must have went with the Québécois goalie strategy against us on Thursday, there is no way Sabourin should be starting over Conklin against one of the best teams in the East unless of some crazy Habs curse. A curse that is very, very real. 🙁

  18. Believe the Hype - The Price is Right says:

    Yeah it was pretty sweet with the big glove hand

  19. Samantha says:

    Did anybody see that HUGE save Conklin made on Mezaros just now? He pulled a Huet by making a bad play outside his net, came sliding into his crease, on the ground, Mezzy shoots and he just raises his arm to catch the puck. Beautiful. Ottawa sucks.

  20. cmac says:

    is CBC going to show Gainey’s speech and the ceremony?

  21. 24 Cups says:

    likehoy – I would have thought that Hunter would get more than $2mil a year. Mind you it is for 5 years so there is some security there. That could be real chump change in the not too distant future. Habs could have offered more but probably not at 5 years. Steen just signed for two years at 1.7 mil a year. I wonder if it has a no trade clause:-)

    The Original 24 Cups

  22. Habsrule1 says:

    Nothing wrong with curling…maybe you’re the joke? Or is it garbage?

    Go Habs Go!!


  23. moser17 says:

    Looks good on Emery to be scored on like that.

  24. HotHabs says:

    Well, I’m no curler, but it happens to be a pretty popular sport in parts of the country. So, you’re calling the sport of curling garbage and the people who watch it stupid? Hmmmm…

    enjoying the high’s & enduring the lows of being a Habs fan

  25. moser17 says:

    Well, it’s CBCs ‘House’ so they can. They’d better ‘Hurry Hard’. I’d ‘Skip’ it, ‘Mate’.


  26. Blitzen says:

    HURRY HARD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Remember February 19th: The Comeback

  27. Erik says:

    cbc right now was to have ottawa pens game on but a curling match went to overtime haha curling what a joke people actually watch this garbage? wowWOW how stupid is that?

  28. The Teacher says:

    I can’t hear you over the roar of my own clapping 😛

  29. Blitzen says:

    Better pace yourself…
    Remember February 19th: The Comeback

  30. The Teacher says:

    I’m already standing and applauding BG #23

  31. Blitzen says:

    Stéphane Richer is still plenty fast.
    Remember February 19th: The Comeback

  32. Blitzen says:

    Lafleur just scored. Crowd went wild. Looks like some of the vets are faster than Lats. ;-D
    Remember February 19th: The Comeback

  33. frank81 says:

    You can watch online at

  34. howtathor says:

    I listened to the excellent Team990 broadcast yesterday from the Hotel Nelligan in old Montreal. All the proceeds went to the Gainey Foundation and Bob’s speech was priceless. Wonder if anyone caught it? Brother Boone, do you B-E-L-I-E-V-E ?

  35. CHiggins says:

    Does anyone know if a channel is gonna broadcast the ceremony?

    cuz i dont have RDS and cbc is too busy showing Ron Maclean

  36. howtathor says:

    Gui finally reunited (in a sense) with his old linemate Derek Brassard! If that doesn’t light a fire under his butt, I don’t know what will? Maybe an all expenses paid vacation in sunny Hamilton.

  37. HotHabs says:


    Just wondering about your being here only until April… is that part of the Boone Reverse Jinx???

    enjoying the high’s & enduring the lows of being a Habs fan

  38. JF says:

    According to RDS, Steve Begin will be in the line-up tonight. ahe always provides a spark with his energy and grit.

  39. Blitzen says:

    I put this up:

    Not sure if it’ll have any legs but I thought I’d do it just out of respect for Gainey. Hopefully, the guy gets to read it at some point. Add your thoughts if you wish!

    Remember February 19th: The Comeback

  40. Moey says:

    Thanks for that, I signed it, good idea!!!

    I like to refer to Feb.19th as the “Rockey of hockey”.

  41. ganderhab says:

    Hey Mike,
    If a french group was singing the anthem tonight, would you make a remark about how they were trying to wrap their Quebec tongues around ” We Stand On Guard For Thee “? Think about it.

  42. Blitzen says:

    Lafleur scored again…pretty good hands. Marcel Dionne is there…he is sooooo small.
    Remember February 19th: The Comeback

  43. stephen says:

    If it means getting back to solid, fundamental defense, I wouldn’t mind a 2-1, or 1-0 game.

    The last couple of games, while exciting, have been a bit of a mess back there.

    Let’s hope they can all channel Gainey’s aptitudes, and really put a lock-down on the Columbus attackers.

  44. tony d says:

    thank God Steve’s in
    I get a sore groin when he doesn’t play

  45. von says:

    Wouldn’t a guest book or something be a little more appropriate than a petition? Nice idea, just the wrong kind of forum IMO.

  46. tony d says:

    I don’t want to get too cocky for tonight’s game….hope the players don’t as well
    Columbus with 65 points in the west will not lie down and let our boys cruise to victory as a gift for Bob.
    Nothing would be sweeter for them if they can spoil the party in our house.
    So I hope les Habs are done dreaming about the cup and the parade and get back to playing solid , 60 min of hockey.
    Go Habs Go!
    There’s a mouse in my wall (probably a leaf fan sent to spy on me) and I want to scare the fazoolis out of him tonight with many screams of “ET LE BUT”!!!!!!!!!!!!

  47. Blitzen says:

    You know what they say: it’s the thought that counts. ;-D
    Remember February 19th: The Comeback

  48. likehoy says:

    saku koivu conspiracy theory

    maybe the refs let saku’s hooks go 95% of the time and select a good spot to let it break our backs. e.g. one goal leads, when we’re trying to make our comeback, etc. match fixing!

  49. Barts says:

    My favorite all-time player… In the words of Dick Irvin at the Forum closing: “Russian coach Viktor Tikhonov once said of him, as far as technique was concerned, he was the best player in the world.” Robert Michael Gainey.

    It’s about damn time…

  50. B says:

    The last time Montreal won the cup, one of their top center’s had 98 minutes in penalties. Clearly the writing is on the wall.

  51. RS says:

    How often does Rick Nash get to play on HNIC? I expect 3 from him tonight. If Souray was still around I would have said 5.

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