About last night …


Best line from Twitter:
Sixty per cent of women having sex in Montreal Wednesday night will accidentally scream Brendan Gallagher’s name.
The other 40 per cent will do it on purpose.
Or as muttered by Bruins fans drowning their sorrows in saloons near the TD Garden:
Budaj! Bummer!!

Maybe if they’d had Jarome Iginla for the shootout …

If you’re repeating the joke around the water cooler Thursday morning, feel free to substitute Peter Budaj’s name for Gallagher.

Or have the ecstatics shrieking “P.K.!”

In the Canadiens’ latest crazy clusterfrack of a game, Subban played 30:39. He took seven shots, only one of which missed the net. P.K. was the only Canadien to finish that crazy game at plus-3, a figure matched by Boston’s top line of Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand and Tyler Seguin.

P.K.’s goal – which gave the Canadiens a 2-0 before the second period turned into a nightmare – was the 10th he has scored in 27 games. Project that over an 82-game season and we’re talking about a 30-goal defenceman. The team record is 28, scored by Guy Lapointe in 1974-’75.

Gallagher also scored his 10th – plus the shootout goal that had Tuukka Rask storming off the Garden ice in a stick-smashing fury.

For the second time in March, Boston blew a two-goal lead against the Canadiens on TD Garden ice. This time around, the home team scored four unanswered goals in the second period to lead 4-2. Almost 12 minutes into the third period, they led 5-3.

The Canadiens were in near-total disarray. The Bruins scored their goals with dismaying ease, taking advantage of turnovers and loose coverage. Alexei Emelin’s 100th game in the NHL was probably his worst (and included a penalty in overtime). He and Andrei Markov (whose smarts couldn’t quite compensate for lack of speed and mobility) were on for all four goals the Bruins scored at even-strength.

It was some kind of ugly. The Cup contenders were kicking the butts of the pretenders, reinforcing Boston’s place – along with Pittsburgh, Chicago and L.A. – on an Iginla short list that does not include your Montreal Canadiens.

But a funny thing happened to the Bruins on their way to an undisputed position atop the Northeast Division.

As was the case in the March 2 game, the third period belonged to the visiting team. And you have to think – or maybe hope – the Canadiens are starting to get into the heads of their arch rivals.

The psychodrama continues with an April 6 game at the Bell Centre, where it could get loud. That’s the last of four regular-season meetings, but you just know the Canadiens and Bruins will renew hostilities in the playoffs.

It’s written in the stars. The hockey gods demand this rite of spring.

Next time they play, Boston likely will be bolstered by the return of Johnny Boychuk and Adam McQuaid, plus whomever they trade for – Ryan Clowe? – now that they’ve lost out on Iginla.

And who’ll be dressing for the Canadiens?

In his postgame remarks, Michel Therrien praised the Canadiens’ character, the team’s response to adversity and refusal to quit. And the coach acknowledged his decision to yank Carey Price after 40 minutes changed the game’s momentum.

You can nitpick by suggesting he might have called Timeout to slow the Boston onslaught, but Therrien is having a terrific season. The switch to Budaj was the latest example of coaching decisions that have been coming up roses all season long.

Something that ought to be fixed before the playoffs begin: The Canadiens’ second-period problems.

On L’Antichambre, François Gagnon had some goals-against stats.

Through 33 games, the Canadiens have allowed 14 goals in the first period – best in the league. Their 24 GA in third periods is good for fourth.

But opponents have scored 40 in the second period. That ranks the Canadiens 26th.

There are other issues. Until Markov’s shot somehow found the net with nine seconds left, the PP was pathetic.

Boston has the best PK in the league. But in the absence of Raphael Diaz, Therrien has to find someone with a point shot superior to that of Josh Gorges, whose three shots against Boston all missed the net.

Gallagher’s heroics notwithstanding, the David Desharnais line continues to struggle. Gaston Therrien, on L’Antichambre, said Ryder should be playing right wing with DD and the slumping Max Pacioretty.

Gallagher could play with Alex Galchenyuk, who was good in Boston, and Lars Eller, who was not intimidated by the Bruins.

Who would play with Tomas Plekanec and Brian Gionta? Maybe Brandon Prust, if he returns to action anytime soon. Or Travis Moen.

With the trade deadline looming and their rivals loading up for the postseason, does Marc Bergevin go shopping for a name that could be screamed on a spring night?

Depends on the cost. I wouldn’t mortgage the Canadiens’ future on a rental … or mess with the chemistry of a team that keeps surprising us.







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  2. Bogie Man says:

    Gallagher is a fire cracker. I love his energy and drive for the game. His approach to hockey has got to be contagious you would think. I also like Budaj’s game last night came in cold and made some really great saves. Each game MT uses him he improves and improves. I was never a big fan, but I am getting to be. MT will have to make some tough decisions down th stretch. What I did not like and it seems to be a trend is lack luster play from Max Pac. He seems to want to stay high in the slot and wait to be fed, he rarely goes hard to the net and never uses his size to his advantage. He needs to step up his agression! I do not like Ryder on the wing he is currently on, he needs to be moved. I do not like Armstrong again a player that needs to use his size more, some may disagree with me there but he needs to be replaced. I was impressed with Halpren last evening on the PK and face offs. I think he will take Armstongs place when Bourque and Prust return. I like Tinordi alot! He should stay up with the big club for sure. He is just solid. Markov is getting worse by the game. Made a few mistakes last night and of course Subban by far was our best defensive player logging over 30 mins. He is a force on the ice and teams are starting to get this intimidation. MB needs a another gallagher but bigger at center and play Budaj more and we have a better chance to win the cup!

  3. The Dude says:

    My 4 stars last night :1) P K Orr
    2) Budaj #1
    3) Michael “fu booins” Ryder
    4)Lil Gally

    • Loonie says:

      No Gallagher eh?

      Pulls them within one, net presence on the tying goal shootout winner.

    • Mattyleg says:

      What happened to your Beantown Beatdown, Dude?
      Weren’t we supposed to be mashed like gnats by the Big Bad Bruins because we don’t have a Heavyweight Fighter?

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • nunacanadien says:

        We were mashed like gnats, or at least Gionta was every time he skated down with the puck. Geoff Molsen, maybe it is time you stop being cheap and signing only small cheap players who rip you off in negotiations ala Gomez/Gionta. Time the habs protected that rookies that Trevor Timmins finds, the midget pony show of Timmins…..when did Timmins ever find us a big real nhl player? Did he scout an Eric Cole or wait, we have Max Pac, but he is a freak in a way, who has a diminished work ethic because what player wants to watch their captain being creamed on the boards?

  4. krob1000 says:

    Has anyone considered that this may truly be a rental with Iginla….I mean a rental where he intends to go back to Calgary. It might explain the cost being a little lower than expected.

  5. habsfan0 says:

    IMHO,the Pittsburgh Penguins have peaked way too early and will not win the Cup.
    Very similar to the 1992-93 Mario Lemieux led club that went on an extended undefeated streak during the regular season,and then were beaten in the playoffs by Glenn Healey and the New York Islanders.

  6. shiram says:

    Bruins lost 2 last night, that’s awesome, loved it.
    Loved the fair weather fans packing it in after it was 4-2.
    On the other hand I was totally wrong saying it would be a boring affair…

    Penguins will be a force to be reckoned with in the playoffs, and for those talking of Fleury’s shakiness, well I think they won’t hesitate to play Vokoun.

    Habs can hang with both of those teams.

    • nunacanadien says:

      Habs need to sacrifice another midget to get the real NHL players on the team to ante up like when we bought out Gomez. Gee Gionta looms large in the picture Molson should consider buying him out now.

  7. RockinRey says:

    The point shot is not the real concern. When Diaz is back pair him with Markov and Pk just needs someone with a touch. You keep Diaz and Markov together and move Pernel in everynow and then.

    But otherwise you need a shut down D man as a priority. Kaberle will play in the playoffs and he might be the kind of guy who can set up PK and take on 6th D man minutes. Just see if there is a big body to help ease things in front of Price and Budaj!!

    Big D man and a natural sniper are pieces for this team. Just dont mortgage future.

    Interesting that one rumor site has Briere coming to Montreal. Another has Martin St Louis.

    • nunacanadien says:

      With Subban’s pathetic penalty and turnover performance, I wonder if there is anyone of decent scoring ability that we could trade for? Subban should really be a forward, as he was basically absent and cost the team games so far. I used to think Koivu was bad for giving games away, but Subban, he has a nasty Midas touch. If we want to win the in the playoffs, Subban is a greater threat than benefit unless he learns how to play as a team player like Therrien would say. Maybe Therrien had Subban pegged right from the beginning.

  8. PrimeTime says:

    The price of Crow sure is high today!

  9. thebonscott says:

    Bon’s 3 thoughts
    1. I cringe when i see Bouillion and Gorges on the powerplay
    2. I like mike blunden on the fourth line.
    3. Max Pac looked lost last night, needs a line change.
    *. Bonus thought Markov has slowed a lot, needs to play less minutes, and they should be better sheltered minutes.

    “I found out that a guy I hate has cancer … I told him I feel bad for the cancer” -Ed the Sock.

    • nunacanadien says:

      Blunden does not seem to be fitting in well. Maybe the sports psych should be the third assistant coach on the bench, we must have the world’s largets collection of head cases. First Eller last year, and this year improved thanks to the shrink, and maybe Pernell could use a few straightjacket sessions……

  10. Pat8987 says:

    Wow, what a rollercoaster of emotions last night!

    After much reflection I believe the best move for MB may be no move at all…I call for a status quo from here on out…

    That being said, after the moves made by Pens yesterday I can only see one trade bringing us within reaching level.

    D. Boyle + Clowe to Montreal

    But I’m pretty sure the return would look something like

    Diaz + Kristo + 1st + Ellis + 2nd to San Jose

  11. HardHabits says:

    If the Habs figure out how to effectively change lines in the 2nd period so as to not leave Price hung out to dry they’ll have a good chance to win the Cup. The Crosby goal on Tuesday was an example. That goal was not on Tinordi. It was on the line change.

    The bench in the 2nd period is in the opposing teams O-Zone. Maybe they should concentrate on being an all out offensive team in the 2nd and employ the same strategy they’ve been using with extreme success during the 1st and 3rd periods.

  12. habsfan0 says:

    So,I open up the paper (Montreal Gazette)this morning,and read that Iginla has been traded to the Boston Bruins.

    Next,I’m expecting to read that the Habs have traded Price,Moen,& Kaberle to Tampa for Stamkos.

  13. Everyone is talking as if the Pens are a Lock.

    Screw that, anyone at anytime can be knocked out of the playoffs, that includes us yes, but the Habs shut those guys down Tuesday evening, and that was pure hockey that did that.

    The Pens are no lock to win the Cup. It must be nice to have names like Crosby and Malkin, but a great defense can win…..JM’s team did that with great defense and goaltending by Halak Alot.

    OK I need to get some orders filled, talk to yall laters.

    Go Habs Go

    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    Custom Sports Figures

    • HardHabits says:

      They are no locks it’s true but you gotta admit, adding Morrow and Iginla makes them look pretty damn awesome. I just hope that either they or the Bruins get bounced in the 1st round because if not chances are the Habs will have to face them both to make it to the SCF’s.

    • habstrinifan says:

      Did you have to mention JM???

  14. 24 Cups says:

    The days of laughing at cellar dwellers such as the Islanders, Blue Jackets and Oilers are over. Calgary is now the biggest joke in the NHL. The mishandling of the Iginla asset is a prime example of why this team’s well has run dry.

    – Most fans will be all over Jay Feaster for one of the worst trades in memory but much of this has to be on owner Murray Edwards. The lesson to be learned here is to not get too close to your players. Don’t let your emotions interfere with your business sense.

    – Calgary received very little in return for Iginla. The two young players aren’t even in the Pens’ top ten prospect list. The 1st rounder could be a mere four picks ahead of the Habs’ 2nd round pick from Calgary.

    – The real issue here is that the Flames should have started trading Iginla a year or two ago. They then would have been able to get some real core assets in return. Some of that blame has to be on Edwards. Too little, too late in that regard.

    – If Dallas can get Morrow for a broken down player, couldn’t the Flames at least hold out for a player such as Maatta or Bennett?

    – Wouldn’t the Flames get a greater return if they waited to the deadline? Not really, seeing that Iginla was able to pick his own destination. That really handcuffed Feaster. Especially once the word was out. Once again the blame has to be partly shared by Edwards.

    – The battle of Alberta is basically over for the rest of the decade. Edmonton is about ready to break through while the Flames have yet to hit rock bottom.

    – Shout-out to Joe Nieuwendyk. I wonder what Ryder would have been worth at the trade deadline if you only had waited it out? I’d have to check but it strikes me that Ryder and Jagr are the top two wingers left in the UFA pool.

    – Ray Shero is looking like a genius right now. Light years ahead of any other team in the NHL in terms of getting stoked for a Cup run while still having Bennett, Pouliot, Maatta, Despres, Harrington and Dumoulin in the pipeline. The only wildcard left has to be the unpredictable play of Fleury.

  15. Kooch7800 says:

    Shocking stat about Ryder since he has joined….

    4 powerplay goals and 3 powerplay assists in 13 games

    Total 2 even strength goals and 3 even strength assists

    Total of 13 points in 13 games.

    He was brought in for the PP and has delivered. I wonder how it would be doing if Erik Cole was still here

    “Keep your stick on the Ice”

  16. The Dude says:

    Well looks like the Pens will do what it takes to win the Cup…I’m impressed ! I say they win the Stanley Cup hands down this year and for those who say any team can win a series at any time ,bullshit.

  17. frontenac1 says:

    @Shane. Agreed amigo. Last night my dogs told me IT was”in the bag”.I thought they meant the”herb”.Now it all makes sense.The CUP!

  18. krob1000 says:

    The Habs defense has been very aggressive this year and instrumental in the teams success. With the pressure game being employed by the forwards they are able to often step up and make stops in the neutral zone or pinch to hold pucks in. This is especially effective against weaker less skilled teams. However, there was a noticeable conservatism vs Pittsburgh….after having been shelled for 7 goals last time out. The game against Boston though was a free for all and there were numerous ill advised instances where dmen got caught trying to make stops (forcing themselves to stop or be going forward …and you can’t recover from those..it is either an odd man break or a penalty). I am not sure if they underestimated the Bruins effectiveness off turnovers or their ability to make plays under pressure but they have some scary good players off the rush like Bergeron, Marchand, Krejci and Seguin. We should in all likelihood be a far more respectful of their abilities and be more conservative …especially at mid ice and on strong side pinches. I understand this is a fundamental that has helped with the teams successful forecheck and play away from the puck but against teams like Boston and PItts…a much more conservative game in that regard is required

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