Price to start

The coach won’t confirm until tomorrow, but on L’Attaque à 5 last night the Team 990’s Tony Marinaro reported the die is cast.

Carey Price, come on down.

Destiny beckons.

Price has not started a game since March 31, when a third-period goal by Eric Staal secured a 2-1 win for Carolina at the Bell Centre. Of the 27 shots Price faced, 17 were in the third period.

Then Jaro Halak hung up his back-to-back shutouts against Philadelphia and Buffalo to give the Canadiens what we thought would be a springboard into the playoffs – and maybe a seeding that would have spared them Washington.

Jaro started the last three games of the regular season – all losses, but getting into OT against the Leafs in the season finale snuck the Canadiens into the postseason.

The Capitals have jostled Halak, knocked him down, barged into his head and beaten him on seven of their last 27 shots on goal.

So the Canadiens are turning to the kid we used to call The Franchise, loser of his last eight playoff starts.

In Price’s magical 2006-’07 season, however, he won a Calder Cup against the Hershey Bears – coached by Bruce Boudreau.

•  •  •

Speaking of coaching, ESPN’s Scott Burnside has a provocative piece on Jacques Martin.

Is his low-key style suited to the playoffs?

Burnside puts the Washington series in the context of Martin’s not-so-great playoff history.

•  •  •

Video scout Jarred Friedman found some stirring speeches to inspire fans for Game 4. (and now we know the ‘do that inspired Scott Hartnell).

Based on what we’ve seen so far, St. Jospeh’s Oratory may be of greater inspiration than oratory – and Brother André a better hope than AK46.

 

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78 Comments

  1. Chris says:

    Oy vey…talk about a situation where ANY failure on Price’s fault could pave his road out of town.  His last start with the Habs saw him booed off the ice as the third star of the game, despite being the only Hab player who showed up that night.

    Now we’re in the playoffs, site of his most famous meltdown…if the Habs go to sleep for 12 minutes again tonight, leaving Price to get blitzed by the Capitals, that’ll be pretty much it for Carey Price as a Montreal Canadien.

    This is not optimal management of a top young prospect.

  2. RJ says:

    Oh yes, just as the Price backers have SUPPORTED HALAK. Is that what you mean? The Price backers have been waiting for Halak to fail for months…please.

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  3. Chris says:

    Do you even need to hear my answer to this?  :)

    Spezza in a heart-beat.  Gomez has now joined my Anti-Pantheon of Habs players that I have loathed in the past 20 years:  Gary Leeman, Darcy Tucker, Jose Theodore, Mike Ribeiro and now Scott Gomez.

  4. SeriousFan09 says:

    I can see it now, people laughing at a goal against Montreal, forgetting what team they’re backing…

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  5. RJ says:

    I can see it now — Price on his knees waving at shots over his glove. 

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  6. RJ says:

    GREAT response. Price supporters on this site want Halak to fail.

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  7. SeriousFan09 says:

    You think I like seeing us down to 2-1 to the Capitals and possibly have
    it all ride on Price in tonight’s game possibly to even the series? Not that
    big of a Price fan by a long shot. I like that he’s gotten his chance
    to do something tonight, but I wish we were ahead because Halak had won
    in Game 2 at the very least. I want the team ahead in the playoffs regardless of the goalie. I want Price to have success and be our long-term goaltending solution, but I don’t think it has to be a zero-sum equation of Price over so-and-so or I won’t back the team for a win. As you might guess from my signature, I wasn’t too thrilled about Koivu’s departure but I accepted that as being in part of the team’s long-term interests, I didn’t declare this team hopeless and wouldn’t support them because my favourite player left town.

    G-Man seems to be taking it rather personally that Price has started in place of Halak in this series and I thought I’d point out that the whole argument this year that Halak deserved his starts over Price was because Halak was turning in the big performances more often and much more reliably. Which is true over the regular season, Halak was better and he earned his starts. Right now, he’s slipping and therefore, we need to try our other goalie in and see if that changes the team’s fortunes.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  8. Clay4bc says:

    Funny how you talk about “team spirit”, and then deride the “Halak supporters”. That statement begs the question – “Why are you not a Halak supporter as well as a Price supporter?” I thought team spirit was important? It is to me, but I get the impression (from your history of posts, not just this one) you would like to see Halak fail so that Price can succeed…strange notion of “team spirit” there…

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  9. tony d says:

    Change is good… Either Price turns this series around or  becomes just another part of the implosion.

  10. SeriousFan09 says:

    I’ve never heard one coach publically trash another during a playoff series, those sorts of things aren’t done, do you really think all 30 NHL coaches have complete and utter respect for each other? No, it’s the Code stuff that generally also prevents players from saying their ex-teammate is a total *** or such. Still happens, but not that much, the coaches never because it just makes you look like a fool.

    It’s not that he isn’t flying off the handle, it’s that he is trying to play pre-lockout hockey in the post-lockout hockey game and it doesn’t work. Playing MAB as Markov’s defence partner was a short-lived experiment that got exposed as playing a specialist way over his head. Our only physical defencemen to force the Caps to pay a physical price in our end watches from the press box because JM doesn’t forgive kids making mistakes, but his veterans can screw up all they want. He has an old-world attitude about coaching that isn’t doing anything for player development and he’s never had post-season success in his whole career, if not for great goaltending all year, we’d be out.

    We lost to the Hurricanes in the playoffs because Ward went hot, Huet couldn’t match him and Carolina got away with trying to put our captain’s eye out, we couldn’t match goalies and the team lost their heart and leader in game 2, not because the coach lost his cool.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  11. SeriousFan09 says:

    Good team spirit there buddy.

    Halak has lost 5 of his last 6 starts, that’s not deserving anything. You earn your starts as the Halak supporters so often decry and he’s been below par lately.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  12. Mike Boone says:

    Could be. I can’t remember what happened yesterday, never mind last year’s playoffs.

  13. SlovakHab says:

    So many good thoughts in this piece I find it hard to react on all of them.

    Just one thing: This team is a 2nd round team if it avoids Pittsburgh and probably Washington (we are about to find out) in the 1st round. We had it all in our hands. We blew our leads on the Islanders, Maple Leafs and, most painfully, on the Capitals in game 2. Maybe Carey Price is the go-to goalie, after seeing Halak can get knocked around in the playoffs (and I was bashed for saying he’s a sieve in pressure-packed games, but I’ll say it again). I may be Slovak, but when it comes to the NHL, I am a Habs fan and want them to win, no matter what nationalities our players are.

    If Semen Varlamov could change the momentum of the series for the Capitals, Carey Price can do it for us. As long as the defence doesn’t turn the puck over, Gomez does not miss large parts of game again and players that are supposed to score, will score (yes, I mean you, Cammalleri and Pouliot).

  14. Clay4bc says:

    On another note…your last two packages (avatars) looked much tastier than the present incarnation…

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  15. Clay4bc says:

    Not about Price or Halak, G-Man – it’s about the team. You should cheer for whoever is in net. I think Halak should start as well, but I give full support to Price if he gets the nod.

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  16. Clay4bc says:

    Here’s hoping Carey can get it done…more up to the team though. Go Habs, Go Price.

    _________________

    Don’t argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

  17. G-Man says:

    Price will get to wave at pucks tonight as they slide behind him. Halak deserves to start. To win, the team has to play better and hit the crap out of Backstrom wherever he is on the ice. He is the key to the Caps scoring. Stop him and you stop the Caps. Oh, and elbow Ovy in the head or cross-check him every time he wants to drive the goalie into the net. Time for the team to grow a set or resemble ineffectual deer caught in the headlights.

  18. badbalance says:

    This is the playoffs, Hope Price takes advantage of this chance to rebound from the unlucky season he’s been having

  19. light_n_tasty says:

    Funny how the ESPN article talks about Crawford flipping out while Scotty Bowman “merely stood and looked at Crawford as if he was an exhibit at a museum”.  The point of the article was that Marc Crawford flipped out and was a great coach, and that great coaches flip out, and since JM doesn’t flip out, he’s not a great coach.  But what about Scotty Bowman…the best coach ever?  He was one of the coolest guys behind the bench.

  20. HabsFanInVictoria says:

    So sick of everyone in the media ripping on JM.  The people who know hockey, (including the one and only Bullfrog Bruce Budreau) recognize him as a good coach.  So he doesn’t fly off the handle like Torts and Ruff?  Big deal.  Do we remember a certain Montreal coach losing his cool in the playoffs and costing them a series against the Carolina Hurricanes in the not so distant past?  In the land of sports, hindsight is 20/20, and somebody always has to take the blame.  I guess the media has picked Mr. Martin.

    Some food for thought:  How many coaches in the NHL take over a team that has 11 new faces, bring them to the playoff after having many of their key players injured for most of the year, AND almost put a commanding lead on the President Trophy winning team, and favourite to win the East/Stanley Cup?  

  21. Beaco says:

    I’ll go on record as not really like either FOR THE PRICE, I will say that Spezza is 6’3 and 215 pounds generally good for a point a game and has been a + player for his career(excluding an ugly -14 last year and a -3 in 33 games as a rookie). Oh and he’s 26 years old…I like Gomer, but…

  22. petrov14 says:

    OH GOD! Gary Leeman!, LOL! No Racicot on the list?

    ______________________________________ Gionta for Captain.

  23. elenar011 says:

    One of the dumbest statements I’ve ever seen on this site. Lol.

  24. Mr.Hazard says:

    Burnside article: who the bloody hell is “we”? We, we, we. He’s talking in first person plural! So annoying!

    “love cannot drown truth, Nefertiti”

  25. Mr.Hazard says:

    In Price’s magical 2006-’07 season, however, he won a Calder Cup against
    the Hershey Bears – coached by Bruce Boudreau.

    Haha! I like it!!

    And regarding the video: Boone, I thought you shared this very clip last playoffs?? I was under the impression that I first came across it on HI/O.

    “love cannot drown truth, Nefertiti”

  26. J. Ambrose says:

    If this is true (that’s still a big IF!), then it’s a mighty ballsy move. Halak has been the better goalie this season, by far, and this is an incredibly pressurized situation: 2 down, on home ice in front of a crowd that isn’t exactly enamoured with him. Plus, Carey hasn’t responded well at all in the past against teams that get physical in the blue paint.

    But while I believe Jaro earned the right to play out this series, this could prove to be the change of pace the team needs. I sure hope so. HOWEVER, we aren’t two down due to Halak. We are two down due to a season-long inability to get to the net, and prevent other teams from doing so. We are fine when they want to play wide-open hockey and skate. But when the opposition realize that works in our favour, they go to the boards and the tough areas where angels and smurfs fear to tread. And we don’t have the Clydesdale horses to play that way. 

    So IF it is Carey, I hope he sparkles. But more than that, I hope the rest of the team is prepared to get dirty.

     

  27. likehoy says:

    alright for a change of pace, who would you rather have?

    jason spezza or scott gomez? at around 7 million each.

    spezza brings high-end offensive skills, a disappearing act, and zero defensive conscience.

    gomez brings high-end playmaking, low end scoring ability, undersized, but backchecks.

    - Habs Romance (Lady Gaga remix) http://montreal.virginradio.ca/blogs/39/posts/464

  28. Rainrocket16 says:

    I will say this!! I am a Habs Fan and do not care who is in nets as long as they give their best!! This is the ULTIMATE TEST for Price. If this kid is gonna be the future of us or anyone else then this is his moment! He is known to be a calm goalie, god we hope so! I just want to here some damn Ole Ole chants tomorrow!!

    No Canadien team has a chance as long as Bettman is in control.

  29. HabsRadio says:

    I’m a huge Halak fan, but I agree with the decision to start Price wholeheartedly.  Halak has been showing signs of weakness for a while now and has to be rattled after allowing 7 on 27.

    Price is hungry right now and has a lot less pressure to deal with.  If Price loses, we live and die with Halak anyway.

    We go into this in a lot more detail here:  http://www.habsradio.com/2010/04/21/loud-noises/

    ===========================================================================
    Check out http://www.HabsRadio.com for a fresh take on all things Habs. Blogs, Discussions, and of course, the Podcast!

  30. Eliisa says:

    That sums up my thoughts on the subject perfectly.

  31. TripleX says:

    Whatever happens I pray the fans do not boo Carey if things don’t go the way we all want it to.  JM is throwing him into a cauldron of fire filled with unrealistic expectations.  Let’s hope common sense prevails.

  32. SeriousFan09 says:

    Excuse me? The best disappearing act since Malakhov was Kovalev by a country mile.

    Markov’s been playing this post-season, but it’s a little hard to do your job while trying to prop up a PP specialist masquerading as a top-pair defencemen.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  33. smiler2729 says:

    So the Steve Rogers of the Habs starts in goal tomorrow… cool. Now if only the Magician Markov (Best Disappearing Act since Vlad Malakhov) shows up, this team might have something.

  34. Chuck Chuck Goose says:

    Speaking of lineup changes, I would LOVE to see O’Byrne back on the ice tomorrow, and I’m sure the Bell Centre crowd would too

  35. Harani says:

    Price has gotta do a lot more of THIS and THIS. I called it after last game, Habs will win tomoro!

    “I gotta feeling…that tonight’s gonna be a good night!”

  36. Chuck Chuck Goose says:

    eeeeeeeeep……kinda on the fence about this. Halak had a rough couple of games, but it’s not like all 3 goals he let in were softies.

    I can’t help but think if tomorrow night is another blowout by the Caps (fingers crossed it’ll be the opposite of Monday), both goalies will leave the rink feeling crushed….

  37. HabsFanInVictoria says:

    Wrong series… the Hurricanes series 3 years earlier.

  38. light_n_tasty says:

    You don’t like 23% reduced fat shredded mozzarella?!?!?!

  39. Chris says:

    How Price (or Halak) plays is largely irrelevant if the Habs only show up for 40 minutes or less.  Unfortunately, that has been the recurring theme all season.  While the goaltender can salvage the odd game out of a mess like that, the matchstick eventually burns your fingers.

  40. jbroderi says:

    We aren’t North vs South Korea here.  We are all habs fans, and not one person on this site wanted Halak to fail last game!!  Not one!!  Sure, they might like price better, and think he is the guy, but they would NOT cheer against the Habs because of it.  Debate is great on the site, but to make price vs halak bigger than habs vs capitals is a monumental error.

     

    “I’ll take potent potables for 500, Alex” JB

  41. habsfan0 says:

    EVERYBODY is predicting a Caps win tonight,that’s when you usually get an upset. I’ll take the Habs 5-1 to even the series. After that,all bets are off.

  42. danedmunds says:

    I hope MAB is enjoying hot dogs and a few pints in the pressbox tonight

  43. nick says:

    Theres a classy statement. Way to support the home team.

  44. habmanj says:

    amen

     

    GO HABS GO!

  45. Bob Barker says:

    Last year’s team was so bad in the playoffs, I wasn’t expecting any wins. This year, the team has shown that they can dominate at times so I feel more optimistic that they can tie the series tonight. 

    As for Price, he probably would have benefited from a full season in the AHL like Rask (21st in 2005), that and not being compared to Dryden and Roy. Anyways, he has been playing well since the Olympics so hopefully he can have a strong game and the team will give him some goal support. 

  46. jbroderi says:

    Price has his chance now.  The potential to springboard his career to where we all thought it was going 2 years ago is at hand.  Will he struggle?  Will he embrace the challenge and play well, giving the Habs a chance?  Will he become the legend we thought he was capable of in 2 months??  Stay tuned!!  

     

    “I’ll take potent potables for 500, Alex” JB

  47. Iceberg84 says:

    You cut me Boone, you cut me real deep on this one… http://www.habsinsideout.com/boone/19424

    Nah I’m just kidding, but still credit where credit’s due :D

     

  48. Chris says:

    The fans have not been out for Halak’s hide for a year now.  Price was visibly upset about his treatment by the home fans in his last start.

    You don’t see a problem with that, and that is your prerogative.  I do see a problem.  I like both young goalies, but think that the Price situation needs to be handled delicately BECAUSE of the fans you mention.

    You acknowledge there is an issue, but take me to task for questioning management’s handling of the situation.  Puzzling.

    And for the record, my name is Chris.  Not “you guys”.  What other people have to say is irrelevant to this discussion, so you can kindly stop inserting words in my mouth that I never said and restrict yourself to addressing my points.

  49. Edwardo says:

    So when Hamrlik fails to keep the puck in along the boards at the blue line, Spacek trips while trying to cover up for him and the Caps score the opening goal on a 2 on 0…will the fans boo Price?

  50. avatar_58 says:

    I think both sides are retarded but that’s just me

  51. avatar_58 says:

    I do not understand you guys. So it’s best we throw Halak to the wolves again and ruin that young prospect? Here’s the situation  – we’re probably going to lose. It does not matter which young goalie takes the L. Might as well let Price have a go since Halak has lost 2.

    That’s all this is. You guys are making each game out to be their career game – yet we weren’t even supposed to make the damn playoffs. How does that even make sense?

    It’s not management – it’s the fans…

  52. HabsfaninMA says:

    Jeez, don’t get so defensive. I didn’t see RJ say anywhere that he is rooting for the Capitals to score goals and for the Habs to lose. But, why should he or anyone have faith in Price?? The truth of the matter is that Price has NOT lived up to being a #5 pick (so far), and he has lost his last 8 playoff games. Don’t you think there’s a reason Martin has kept him on the bench?? Yet, Price fans can’t wait to jump on the board when Halak loses.

    That being said, neither goalie is leading this team to a playoff series win! Do people realize that goaltending has not been the problem with this team?

  53. SeriousFan09 says:

    So some of the Price fans wanted Halak to fail how does what you say make you better?

    That’s what I thought. Either argue from more secure high ground or don’t engage in these things. It doesn’t solidify your argument to make a post like that and say ‘the other guys do it!’

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  54. missy44 says:

     I agree with you about jacques martin.With all the buzzing around Halak in the crease on Thursday and Saturday in Washington,Carboneau would of been on top of the bench and would of had SAKU go see what was going on.

    We dont have a passinate coach or a Captain.(leader,which is nobody”S fault,they could of named one by now)

    I think Price is a Gamble.I think about the last 2 playoffs and he played like crap.Halak got them there,on nights where the habs didnt even show up.(numbers dont lie!) With nothing to lose,why not let the guy who got hthem there finish it off,instead of a goalie we all know cannot play and take the pressure of the playoffs.If he does ,it will be a first…But come on Martin,act like a Coach.

    It reminds me when both he and Lalime lost their jobs for losing against Toronto (Ottawa).he didnt fight for his job,nor for Lalime,who was a great goalie in those days.(it broke Lalime”s confidence,he was never the same after that)

  55. The M says:

    Scoot Burnside’s piece was spot on. JM lacks emotion and it shows on his teams

  56. avatar_58 says:

    I can’t find much optimism about this series after that loss, but c’mon Price – give us something to cheer about

  57. Matt_in_TO says:

    In Price We Trust

     

    - I Hab Faith

  58. habsfanmandy says:

    In Change We Hope

  59. STZA says:

    Makes perfect sense. 

  60. Eliisa says:

    This should be interesting… I am a little worried…

  61. habaholic68NJ says:

    Me too but not about Price starting.  My concern is who JM dresses and whether he rolls 4 lines.  This is the only way we win but JM has not figured that out yet.  Playing three lines has burned us in this series as we run out of gas.

  62. light_n_tasty says:

    The expectations are so low…how can you be worried?

  63. Bob Barker says:

    I’m confident they can pull even. 4-2 Habs. Cammalleri with 2 goals. 

  64. SeriousFan09 says:

    Go Carey! Shut down the Caps.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  65. 21BIGGionta says:

    hes got nothing to lose.

    GO PRICE.GO HABS.GET THROUGH THIS SERIES ON TOP :)

  66. habsfanmandy says:

    Bring the Cup home Boys! I Will Always Believe

  67. habsfanmandy says:

    I’m trying to change my pic, always have probs with it forgive the multiple posts

     

    Bring the Cup home Boys! I Will Always Believe

  68. habsfanmandy says:

    Bring the Cup home Boys! I Will Always Believe

  69. habsfanmandy says:

    Aha it worked! Found it on a search. whaddaya think? It says ‘The hottest female fans in hockey are…’

    Sorry if i stole it from one of ya, didn’t recognize it, feel free to let me know

    Bring the Cup home Boys! I Will Always Believe

  70. light_n_tasty says:

    All I see is Markov humping someone…looks like one of the k-bros.

  71. CHsam says:

    looks like his lover Grabovski!

  72. MikeMcLaren says:

    I want Conan O’Brien in net!

    I want Jay Leno in net!

    Blah blah blah.  Hey, you know what I want?  A Stanley Cup.  I don’t care who is in net so long as I get to see another one of those lifted by our captain… uhm or the assistant captain designated as the receiver of the Cup.

    The Carolina Hurricanes have screwed us over twice in our history by swapping out one goalie in favor of another who, in turn, stoned us and won the series.  Why can’t WE be the ones who return that favor to the Southeast division?

    Well, maybe this time we can.

    In sports anything is possible, even the improbable. 

    Unlike a good number of folks who frequent here, I am an eternal optimist.  I like to ask “What if?”

    What if Carey Price wins tonight and wins convincingly?
    What if the Canadiens score so many goals tonight that they chase Varlamov from the nets?
    What if the Capitals are now lulled back to the way they were thinking going into game 1 and they relax and take it easy now?
    What if everyone rallies around the team and stops worrying about who’s in or out of the lineup and instead just tries their best as a fan to will this team to win?

    What if?

    I am in town for both these games.  I’m very lucky.  This I know.  I cannot wait for tonight.  I am nervous.  But I am also waiting to see something special: the *real* turning point of the series.

    /\\ike
    GO HABS GO!

  73. Will Longlade says:

    The die is cast. Hope the kid can rise above all the crap and help the Habs win the series. It’s not about Price versus Halak, it’s about winning.

  74. Kristopher7 says:

    Exactly, winning!

  75. Eliisa says:

    Right there with you. I am not worried about Price being between the pipes – more that our offense won’t be able to score. Or if they are able to score that they can maintain the lead. I hope that Carey shines tomorrow night. I do fear for his life though if he doesn’t… lots of fans are already out for his blood.

  76. Eliisa says:

    I don’t know that the expectations are that low. Are they ever truly low among Habs fans? Haha, there were a lot of comments on here after win number one about sweeping the Caps. :)

  77. Danno says:

    This classic motivational speech has always been my favourite.

    I just hope our guys aren’t satisfied just to win the steak knives…

     

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

  78. Kristopher7 says:

    Here’s hoping Price sticks it to me and makes me ultimately embarrassed for the “history will be made” ad I made about him on Youtube. C’mon Pricey, you can do it!


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Price to start

Carey Price, coming off a 53-save performance in a 2-0 loss in Nashville, will start tonight. He’ll face Michael Leighton, whose shootout victory snapped a 14-game winless streak for Carolina on Sunday.


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Price to start

Carey Price will start in goal tonight. It’s his first start at the Bell Centre since Oct. 17 when he was on the short end of a 3-1 count against Ottawa.


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Price to start

Carey Price will start in goal for the Canadiens tonight when they open the season against the Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre.

While  coach Jacques Martin has kept everyone guessing about the last two spots in the lineup. He said he would make his final decisions before the game  but it appears that defenceman Roman Hamrlik and forward Gregory Stewart will be the healthy scratches tonight. Hamrlik missed most of training camp with a virus and his absence will open a spot for Ryan O’Byrne, whose stock has risen after a strong training camp which was highlighted by  his physical play. 


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