Quick Hits

Give the L’Antichambre guys credit: I’m watching a lotta love for Scott Gomez here.

This after Benoit Brunet’s ridiculous sign-off on the game teklecast: “Scott Gomez n’a pas joué un mauvais match.”

He didn’t play a bad game?

Benny, what were they serving in the media lounge?

The much-maligned number 11 was not the best Canadien on the ice in Tampa. 

That would be Carey Price … again.

Price made 43 saves, bringing his road trip total to 113. His teammates blocked another 24 and Tampa Bay fired wide 12 times.

A busy night. But Price betrayed no signs of stress from beginning to end.

Man, he’s good.

Runner-up Man of the Match: Hal Gill, who played 24:26, including 5:55 on the penalty-kill.

But let’s give Gomez some props.

Supposedly injured – he’s blown off a couple optional skates – Gomez skated hard on every shift. He’s often done that this season.

What was different tonight was Gomez’s playmaking. He consistently made clever plays on the Tampa Bay D and good passes to his linemates, Max Pacioretty, who had two goals, and Brian Gionta.

Yes, his contract is ridiculous.

But as was the case last season and into the playoffs, Gomez (almost) earns his money when the Canadiens need him most.

And he doesn’t take nights off.

I thought the 5-on-3 penalty kill turned the game.

But Tampa Bay made the last six minutes of the third period interesting – largely because the minutes of the Top Four D caught up with them. Roman Hamrlik had to play 23:07 – about four minutes in excess of what’s desirable. And James Wisniewsky was at 22:39.

The problem was a shaky third pairing. I like Yannick Weber’s future with this team, but Brent Sopel looked better with Alexandre Picard in Florida than he did tonight with the undersized Weber.

Of course, the Panthers aren’t the Lightning. Tampa Bay has a lot of star power. Credit Jacques Martin and his staff with a game plan that yielded a lot of shots, yes, but kept the most dangers guys – Steven Stamkos, Martin St. Louis and Vincent Lecavalier – under control.

Well, mostly. Vinny had six SoG and a late goal to make it interesting and went 14-7 on draws. But the most dangerous Tampa Bay forward was Dominic Moore, and I like the Canadiens’ chances in that situation.

They’ve strung together four road wins for the first time this season.

The Canadiens are closer to the first-place Flyers than they are to the eighth-place Hurricanes.

The conquest of the Southeast raised the team’s road record to a finally-respectable 16-15-1.

And their goal differential is plus-9.

The Kiddie Corps continues to shine.

• Max-Pac has 14 goals, seven on the PP. He plays hard every shift and has become an in-your-face handful for opposing Dmen and goaltenders

• Lars Eller took two penalties, but Guy Boucher matched Stamkos against him and the Canadiens rookie didn’t embarrass himself.

• P.K. Subban was finally used 1:20 into a second-period power play. The Canadiens scored, and he picked up an assist. Coincidence?

As one Commenter pointed out, P.K. has 29 points in 61 games this season. As a rookie in 2000-’01, Andrei Markov had 23 points in 63 GP.

It was a great trip.

More tomorrow.

67 Comments

  1. Habnofear says:

    And if I was as rude and ignorant and so clueless as you De Pussnuts I would have to shoot myself . If I was you  I’d go see someone bout your inferiority complex …it’s really shows and that’s in type for gosh sake’s, it can’t be good for you. Go  Habs Go….

  2. HardHabits says:

    Never get into an argument with an idiot, they’ll only bring you down to their level and then beat you with experience.

  3. Da Hema says:

    If your IQ were over 80, you would know that our collective concern is the welfare white trash you embody.

  4. HardHabits says:

    You should call yourself, habnobrains, habnoclass, or habnothingtosay.

  5. Da Hema says:

    Wise words HH. It’s like arguing with a bigot. Their views are set like concrete.

  6. HardHabits says:

    Says the person who brags about having 6 beers before the game even starts. Two letters. AA.

  7. Habnofear says:

    Well the real truth of the matter HH my habs bro is ,wait …wait for it now….You don’t know me! We have never met and in our blog relations you have been quite rude to me for ” get this” …my opinions on a blog site for opinions about my team The Montreal Canadiens.You know it’s a discussions forum right? Or are you that shallow and self centered? By the way Boston is an original 6 and has had legendary battles with our team and lost most, so don’t think they haven’t built this years team with that not in mind,cus they have and gave us a taste last game. Hope we win but Mara can’t do it on his own. Cammie has the biggest balls on the Habs and he’s 5’10” …know what I mean? Go Habs GO!

  8. HardHabits says:

    Dude. You are the rudest of the rude. To even suggest that you participate in a discussion here is hilarious.

    You know as much as the next person here that I was adversely affected by the last Boston game. The difference between you and I is that:

    1) I actually absorb what people write here and have had my perspective changed many a time by reading other people’s wisdom, something you don’t do because you are too damn stubborn to change your mind.

    2) I see the positives in the team and genuinely acknowledge them, another thing you fail to do.

    I don’t need to know you. Boston are d**chebags. I had respect for that club up until the last Habs game because that was a load of crap. Pouliot could’ve smoked Kreji but he let up. Price could’ve ripped Thomas’ head off but he let up. That’s class. We’ll out-class them.

    I also watched the Flyers win two Cups and I hated Bobby Clarke more than any other hockey player. Imagine. His slash on Kharlamov turned me off the Summit Series. I stopped watching after that game. I didn’t care that Canada won either. It was a disgusting display.

    That is why I enjoyed thoroughly when Robinson cleaned Dave Schultz’ clock in ’76.

    Watch for Tinordi. He’ll be that player. Next game against the Bruins we take it. F*ck the Bruins. And those c*nt Flyers.

  9. ZepFan2 says:

    http://wiw.org/~jess/wp-uploads/ironicman.jpg

    You have no idea what irony means, do you?

    ———————————————————————— “Young people have seen that a team can play electrifying, fascinating hockey while still behaving like gentlemen.” ~Serge Savard~

  10. OneTimer says:

    Star of the game, to me, was Gill. Forget the goal…that’s not what Gill’s about, although it’s a nice bonus. And I’m not talking about the 5 on 3, although he truly shines in those situations, we already knew that about him. No, I’m talking about how all game long, I noticed these little plays he was making…he was rock solid on D. A little extra-long poke with the stick here, a perfect shot block there. How such a gangly giraffe on skates can be so effective, I’ll never know.

    He’s perhaps the most important part of JM’s playoff superstar-shutdown defensive play. Ask OV and Crosby all about it. How anyone wouldn’t want Gill back for another year or two on the same salary, I don’t know either. Seriously considering buying the Gill T-shirt…I’ve got Gionta in navy but I want a red one. Peace. :)

  11. Propwash says:

    You aren’t a Habs fan, you come here to stir the pot, that’s your modus operendi.

  12. Habnofear says:

    Oh it’s good ol Poopwash….YOU SHOULD REALY GET SOME MINTS FOR THAT:)

  13. Propwash says:

    Gomez is the new scapegoat.

  14. Propwash says:

    Timo likes to piss and moan about the team, but he isn’t a troll.

  15. Habnofear says:

    Oh the irony,lol

  16. Propwash says:

    So, DaHema is a bitch for calling you out on the absolute tripe you spewed?

    Aren’t you the guy who swore he’d never post here after some deal, Xtrahabsfan?

  17. The Cat says:

    Habs continue their Saturday magic, now 13-3-1 on Saturdays this year.

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

  18. OneTimer says:

    Don’t forget Ali-G and Aragorn, by all their troll powers combined, they are troll Captain Planet!!

  19. HardHabits says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HZmRWz_Dyk0

    This wasn’t the playoffs but I vaguely remember game one in 1976, it was long ago so maybe I am confusing games, but I remember Robinson took on Schultz and it took the wind out of the Flyers sails.

  20. Da Hema says:

    I would be very surprised if Gill were not re-signed this upcoming year. His work on the penalty kill alone would be worth it–especially given how many infractions are called against the Habs! He has an “A” too, so his teammates must respect him.

  21. Habnofear says:

    Lol…you have no idea how or what I’m using the term for! And by the way,you are THE WORST PERSON ON THIS SITE…NOT ONCE HAVE I READ you comment on the team and all you try and do is slag others .That friend is what is called a pathetic Zep troll….Zeptroll2 :)

  22. Habnofear says:

    It was Pierre Bouchard that gave Schultz the headbutt beat down then Robinson games later….and Tinordi is 2-3 years away.

  23. Propwash says:

    Yay, you resort to calling people names, and can’t drum up an actual conversation, what are you, five?

    Oh, and hey, do you deny that you are Xtrahabsfan, and do you deny the deal you made several months ago?

  24. Habalisous says:

    Where did all the Price bashers go?

    Did they commit suicide in the face of their own shame?

    Good.

    ”You miss 100% of the shots you never take.” – Wayne Gretzky

  25. VancouverHab says:

    Happiest player in the NHL? Brent Sopel….

  26. Duracell3 says:

    I just wanna know how they get Halak’d when Jaro’s been out  a couple weeks for his hand, and even with him, we have nothing to fear against the Blues defense or Ben Bishop.

  27. PeterD says:

    First off, I loved the dog commentary tonight, but you know what they say about a dog and his master starting to look like each other after awhile…it wasn’t as scary for the kids as the bobble-head the game before.

    I really like how Eller stuck with and shadowed Stamkos for much of the night.  Eller is such a fun player to watch, he plays the game a full speed all the time and in some pretty tight quarters.

    Gomez, well what ever type of therapy he is getting instead of practices seems to be working.  My guess he is dealing with some confidence issues which are between his ears.  My hope is that he becomes clear that he is successful when he is moving at top speed and making things happen.  Which he has been doing since the trade deadline. 

    I loved watching MAB at our blueline when Tampa was on the PP…and especially when Gomez forced him to make mistakes.  If not for some stellar goaltending we would have had at least two short handed goals thanks to the play of MAB.  Thank God Pierre didn’t re-sign the guy.

    Carey – Carey…man he is cool.  I see a goalie that has matured and has taken this team under his wing all season.  I laugh everytime I think of his comment to the fans after that pre-season game when he told everyone to “just chill”…man if he can hold it together for us and get some solid defensive team support we could make a run this Spring.  Did I just hear someone say, “Jaro who?”…enough said, that controversy is or should be officially dead and behind us.

    My one concern coming into this years playoffs is that we don’t have Gorges and Markov for the run. The mind boggles (not bobbles) at the thought of how good this team could be with those two solidifying our back end.

    And finally, I have to give some props to Cunneyworth and his team in Hamilton…it is because of him that Patches and DD are contributing the way they are this year.  Very well done guys and keep it up with the rest of the supporting cast down there on the farm…we could use another breakout player or two for next season.

    Oh, did anyone see the Mike Milbury bit tonight on HNIC where he was calling for the end of fighting???  Is this bizarro world or what?

    Now on to meet Boston Tuesday night for an even bigger yardstick game than tonights.

     

  28. Mark Light says:

    Hey Mike, about the “ Benoit Brunet’s ridiculous sign-off on the game teklecast: “Scott Gomez n’a pas joué un mauvais match.””

     

    I gotta disagree with you.

    In French many times a negative is used to denote a positive. On a really cold minus twenty five day, I get on the bus and the driver says, “C’est pas chaud,” which is literally, it is not hot, but figuratively translates to “Its pretty darn cold out there”.

    Much the same with the comment about Gomez not playing a bad game, really translates to “He played a super game”.


  29. smiler2729 says:

    You’re Stretch Armstrong

  30. samTHEman says:

    I think what Boone is trying to point out is Brunet’s inability to give credit where credit is due. I understand the sarcasm behind the french language with the negative as a positive like you mentioned in your example, but Brunet clearly wasn’t using that tone. Imo he’s simply shying away from directly saying “Gomez played an excellent game tonight” because of his personal feelings towards Gomez, similar to what we’re accustomed of hearing from Brunet about AK (which he’s really shafted about that now).

  31. mjames says:

    I see the faithful are anointing Gomez as our next superstar based on his game against Tampa Bay. Not that I am denigrating his play last night but I w atched the Flyers – Rangers game this afternoon and the announcers were crowing over the fleece job Sather did on the Canadian when they traded McDonough for Gomez. They did not even include the other players in the trade. They were saying Gomez for McDonough was a fleece job. I guess these guys did not see Gomez’s two passes last night.

    I have a question. Knowing what we know now would the Canadiens trade McDonough for Gomez. I say no.

      

     

    mjames

  32. geo_habsgo says:

    Winning. 

    It just feels good.

  33. RockinRey says:

    Gomez deserves props! I didn`t watch but read the game blog as it was happening. Maybe he is the new whipping boy but he deserves it.

    And contrary to one posters view he has mailed games this year and last and he takes a lot of bad penalties.

    That said I hope he is recovering from whatever has ailed him and he is ready for a good playoff run.

    Keep rolling PK , give him as much ice time as he can take. I have a feeling he is primed for a decent finish and playoff!

     

     

     

  34. PrimeTime says:

    Uh oh! Posters bubble dreams of Bolts take a hit?? Aw well!

  35. habs001 says:

    new jersey still in the running for 8th seed…they do have the sched to make an even bigger move next 6 games…ottawa,islanders,thrashers 2 times each team…but sometimes expected wins become loses

  36. VancouverHab says:

    Great post — except I don’t think MAB needs anyone forcing him to make a mistake ;–)

  37. sidhu says:

    Great trip for the boys, we needed confidence going into the much-anticipated rematch against the Bruins on Tuesday.  Price is on top of his game, AK46 is reborn, Eller is playing his best hockey of the season, and the PK is very effective.  The third pairing also gives me concern, and against a big Bruins squad it wouldn’t surprise me if Weber gave way to Mara, and Pyatt to White.  The last thing I would want to see is Pyatt being picked on, or given some verbal harassment, because of the last Bruins game. 

    Someone else mentioned the folly of having Halpern in a top-6 role — I agree.  Halpern is not suited for that role, he is a checker, a defensive specialist.  Nothing against him personally, he’s just a square peg forced into a round hole.

    The absence of a true scoring forward in a top 6 role (it’s hard to break up AK46 from Eller when AK46 is playing great) is what many of us wanted PG to address at the trade deadline. But that’s over now, and it’s hard to argue with 4 wins in a row.  Sopel, though slower than I was expecting, brings stability and good hockey sense to the club.

  38. athanor says:

    That Milbury thing might be a sign of the Armageddon. Or at least of the world tilting on its axis.

    I’m guessing, though, it has to do with the  brain slices showing greivous injuries to career fighters.

    It would have been nice if Milbury has just said ‘I’ve changed my mind…’ Cuz then maybe Lebrun wouldn’t have taken the shot about he wimpification of Mike Milbury just at the end.

    But it was amusing to see the panelists agog at the new position.

  39. Rad says:

     

    I didn’t  see the game, but from the highlights it looked almost like an “easy” win — this, against a premier team ahead of us in the standings. Jumped out to a nice lead, and never looked back. The Habs have their mojo back. 

    It’s good to see the team spirit and the obvious camaraderie amongst players. Barring significant injuries to key players, this team could do well in the post-season again. But we have to get by Boston on Tuesday and beyond. The punishing physical style that the Bruins play is Montreal’s Achilles heel. So let’s see if speed, skill, good goaltending and team spirit can beat in-your-face intimidation. It will be a bigger challenge than Tampa Bay tonight.

     

  40. kempie says:

    Where are the trolls? Where’s Tony? Where’s Doink? Where’s George Carlin? Where’s Gerry? Damn , after 4 wins in a row you just know they’ve got a ton of material saved up.

  41. Habnofear says:

    Kreampie, don’t worry man I’m around and this morning stated the Habs had a 50/50 chance too win  and the next game against the Bruins,well …the damage has been done and it’s in Boston’s favor to continue with their foot on our heads play for play-offs sake …So let’s enjoy this win and stock up on booze ,painkillers and sunglasses cause next Tuesday gonna be the return of the Turtle Ninja’s….

  42. Stooof says:

    sad thing is jm split up the amazing chemistry that was eller and kosty to put kosty on a line with dd.  wierd.  they scored anyways but sitll amazes me.

  43. HardHabits says:

    Will one of the Mods please delete this SPAMMER –> http://habsinsideout.com/user/yiwunyshus

  44. Habnofear says:

    So De Hema,now that you have made it clear that you are the bitch in our relationship may I suggest you take your midol tabs and read a lil further on in the blog  and oh yeah tuck that string in…..

     it’s embarrassing !

  45. Da Hema says:
    Are you stupid, a liar, or a stupid liar? I pray to God you are incapable of reproduction.
  46. HardHabits says:

    So you admit that you’re a troll.

    Nobody liked the bean-town beat-down but since then the Habs acquired Sopel and Mara and Gill will be in the line-up. Add White instead of Pyatt and you get my drift.

    If the Habs stay disciplined they’ll do what they’ve done for decades, beat the big, bad Bruins with a smaller, speedier and more skilled team.

    Don’t forget, this season the Habs are 3-1 and 8 wins for 2 losses in the last 10 games played.

    The only Ninja Turtle will be you. Like you’re buddy Xtrahabsfan. LOL

    I still think the Habs need more size up front but with MaxPac and Eller playing well things are looking up. Besides the Bruins are idiot goons not unlike a certain trollish poster who likes to stir sh*t on this site.

  47. JIMVINNY says:

    he asks for trolls, and names four guys, none of them you.  You just named yourself as a troll, congratulations.  Not that it comes as a surprise or anything.

  48. bigdave says:

    Was MAB ever that good?

    Webber was doing his best MAB impersonation with wingers blowing by him like cars on Decarie Expressway passing the only driver obeying the posted speed limit.

    What has happened to the “big shot” from Webber?

     

     

     

     

     

    “The Allo Police Media – a collection of bitter ex-coaches, players and wannabees whose collective lack of success accounts for their present positions in Sports’ equivalent of the Jerry Springer Show”

  49. Duracell3 says:

    IDK, he just doesn’t seem that good at getting in the right position to take shots. In his own zone he seems like he’s often caught by the other team’s speed.

    Let’s not kid ourselves though, MAB on the other hand has maybe the best shot in the NHL, but it’s not worth playing a guy that struggles against AHL forwards on a regular shift. I’ve never understood why they don’t just make him a 4th line winger and play him on the PP.

  50. SeriousFan09 says:

    Ah, Sock Puppet Theatre soon, I can smell it.

     

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

  51. Mr. Habs says:

    The only thing that concerns me in this seasons playoffs is our D. They have to clear the net at all cost.

  52. rogieshan says:

    Is Mara simply an insurance policy or is Martin rotating him, Picard and Weber to see who is the best fit with Sopel? Weber repeatedly got caught out of position tonight and is unable to win puck battles (What was he doing on the penalty kill to start the 2nd period??). Mara brings physicality, steady presence, and is a left-handed shot. Let him and Sopel be the 3rd pairing until Spacek returns.

  53. SeriousFan09 says:

    I get the feeling like Mara was used to be tough against ATL, he’ll get the call to suit up with Sopel on Tuesday night, JM wants to use him for extra muscle on the back end.

     

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

  54. Mike Boone says:

    I went shopping for new props today. Got some cool ideas to ride out the season. But I can’t do this nonsense when I’m blogging at the Bell Centre.

  55. ricardamundo says:

    Boone,

    You’ve stepped up big time. Ever since the comment about your vids “scaring little children” you have been “on fire.” I hated the new blog and the webcam was just spooky. But since then you’ve found your mojo. Bobble head the other night was brilliant and the hound tonight was pretty good too. I think you’ve finally found your calling. Let’s face it, your destiny is behind the camera, not in front.

    Keep this up and you’ll get a nomination for ‘best short’ at next years Academy Awards (an no, that’s not a personal comment). What’s up for next time, maybe a resurrection of “Mr Bill” from the early days of SNL? Can’t wait to see what you come up with next. If you keep this up, maybe CBC will drop Cherry and insert your clips instead.

    And, “ACTION” …

  56. Mike Boone says:

    Ah, Timo: ever the master of light irony.

  57. Timo says:

    Speaking of MAB. I am glad Boucher is not coaching Habs. Come on… you have an absolutely awesome player in MAB and he barely uses him. What is wrong with coaches these days? What is so hard to figure out. You play MAB a lot – team wins. You don’t – team loses. Sheesh! 

  58. VancouverHab says:

    In two part harmony, Ian: one, two, three—“WE WERE RIGHT ALL ALONG….”

    Let’s give credit to Mr. Boone for giving credit where credit is due — Scott Gomez.

  59. Ian Cobb says:

    A lot of people miss out watching Gomez’s game, he is a money player I want skating for us in the play offs. And you are right Mike, he never mails in a game.

    Martin is getting fed up with Pouliot’s stupid penalties every game. He will be getting even less ice time now.!

  60. Mike Boone says:

    He wasn’t THAT bad.

  61. bigdave says:

    Webber looked alot like MAB reincarnate.

    Minus the SOG!

     

     

     

    “The Allo Police Media – a collection of bitter ex-coaches, players and wannabees whose collective lack of success accounts for their present positions in Sports’ equivalent of the Jerry Springer Show”

  62. EricInStL says:

    You couldn’t really blame people for thinking that.

    “A fanatic is one who can’t change his mind and won’t change the subject”–Winston Churchill

  63. HardHabits says:

    Good job Mr. Boone. Tuesday should be a dandy!!!

  64. EricInStL says:

    It’s good to know we don’t have to worry about Carey, kudos to him. Way to go.

    “A fanatic is one who can’t change his mind and won’t change the subject”–Winston Churchill

  65. SeriousFan09 says:

    The Habs are projecting for 98 points, I called a 100-point season at the start of the year with Andrei Markov around for the majority of it.

    And I was called a rose-coloured glasses optimist for it :D

     

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

  66. Propwash says:

    Imagine a healthy Markov, and PK through a whole season…..


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