Michel Bergeron’s manchette on L’Antichambre:
“Where are the veterans?”
Did Tomas Plekanec play against the Flyers tonight?
Did Scott Gomez?
Mike Cammalleri? Brian Gionta?
Hey, we all love Maxim Lapierre. And it’s great that he answered Jody Shelley’s challenge by scoring twice.
But against a team as good as Philadelphia – and let’s face it: with any kind of goaltending, they’re a Cup contender – your best have to play their best.
Carey Price was at his best.
So were Josh Gorges and P.K. Subban.
To be fair to Pleks, he had five shots on goal.
And to be fair to Gomez … well, any suggestions?
A career slow starter?
Yes, but this has gone beyond a slow start.
Here’s an amazing stat: When Gomez plays 18:40 or more, Canadiens are 1-6-0. When he plays 18:39 or less, they’re 12-1-1.
Gomez played 19:59 against Philadelphia tonight.
15: Canadiens who had more SoG against the Flyers than Gomez, who had none
3:23: Gomez minutes on the PP, which was 0-for again
7: Canadiens who have more goals this season than Gomez’ two
10: Teammates who have more than his four assists
4: Defencemen who have more assists than Gomez
0: Canadiens who are making more money than Gomez this season
3: Seasons on his contract, after this one
Less than zero: Possibility Gomez could be traded
Gomez was not the worst player against the Flyers.
Roman Hamrlik and Jaro Spacek were brutal. AK46 didn’t do much.
But Gomez is in a 21-game slump.
He’s skating, he’s working .. and nothing is happening.
If the NHL kept stats on passes with no chance of being completed, Gomez would be the league leader.
He plays like a guy whose hockey sense has deserted him.
And there isn’t much to be done.
The L’Antichambre guys are lobbying for a David Desharnais call-up.
Jacques Martin can’t put Gomez on the fourth line or in the pressbox. Treating a veteran that way is asking for problems in the room.
Maybe it’s time for Bob Gainey, who still fills an undedined role with the club, to take his acquisition for a nice stroll in the Old Port.
• • •
The much-anticipated physical fireworks failed to ignite.
Canadiens had a 22-21 advantage in hits, and there were no big thumps.
There was no post-whistle nonsense.
P.K. Subban was booed and took a few hits, but nothing dirty.
As usual, when all was said and done, a lot more was said than done.