About last night …

DD

Two games, four points.
A critical week for your Montreal Canadiens has produced two excellent wins over Minnesota and Washington.
These were the warm-up acts.
Now we get the main attraction.
And if the Canadiens play as well as they did against the Wild and Capitals, Pittsburgh’s saturday visit to the Bell Centre could be the Game of the Season … so far.

The Canadiens survived Alex Ovechkin in D.C.

The Great 8 scored both Washington goals – albeit neither a virtuoso effort. But Ovechkin sure put a lot of mustard on that ridiculously angled shot that got in between Peter Budaj’s legs. And when the final siren sounded, his stat line read five shots on goal, plus three that were blocked and four missing the net. That’s a lot of lumber on rubber – plus three hits … and a dumb penalty.

I’m betting Sidney Crosby won’t go to the box for roughing up Brian Gionta. The best player in the world will stay on the ice Saturday, as will Evgeni Malkin, who’s in the planet’s Top 10.

So no rest for the weary. The Canadiens are within a point of catching Toronto for third place in the Atlantic Division, and the Leafs will play host to Ovechkin & Co. Saturday night. Maybe the Caps can come up with a decent road game, after losing to Pittsburgh and the Canadiens at home while surrendering seven unanswered goals over 79 minutes and 37 seconds.

It was at 19:37 of the first period that Ovechkin scored that ridiculous goal after the Canadiens played what TSN analyst Ray Ferraro called “19 1/2 perfect minutes.”

You would have expected it to inspire the Caps, who would then come out and dominate the second period, their fans in a frenzy.

It didn’t happen.

Playing textbook road-game hockey, the Canadiens outshot the home 14-3 in the second period. They took no penalties over the last 40 minutes of the game.

Discipline, balanced scoring from three lines and another superlative performance from Budaj – Those breakaway stops! Oh my!! – ensured that the early lead would stand up – despite a late-game push by the home team.

The commitment to team defence was exemplified by Michaël Bournival blocking John Carlson’s rockey with his right foot. Te rookie had to be helped to the room, and Bournival’s status is uncertain for the game against the Penguins.

George Parros is the only spare forward. But the Hamilton Bulldogs played in Montreal Friday night – and won 4-1 – so an emergency call-up is no problem. Gabriel Dumont, Patrick Holland, Mike Blunden … I bet Crosby is nervous already.

The win in Washington was a team effort, but some individuals merit mention:

• Budaj, of course. Is there a better backup goaltender in the league? And it’s a great situation, because no matter what Budaj does, Carey Price is indisputably Numero Uno.

• Josh Gorges led all Canadiens Dmen in time on ice, at 24:32. The future captain had had a night of 2s: two assists, plus-2, two hits, two blocked shots.

• Max Pacioretty had five shots on goal. As Arpon Basu of NHL.com tweeted, Max-Pac has 24 SoG in his last four games, 26 in his previous eight.

• David Desharnais continues his ascent from the depths of Montreal Hockey Hell. DD’s goal was his first in 26 games. He’s playing with confidence and making plays for linemates Pacioretty and Brendan Gallagher. They are the current iteration of the team’s Number 1 line.

• P.K. Subban went right after Troy Brouwer when the rugged Caps forward took a run at Andrei Markov. I would have liked to hear more praise for that from P.K.’s coach.

• Alexei Emelin led the Canadiens with four hits. With Russia’s national team brass watching, Emelin bolstered his case to join Markov and that guy who plays for washington in Sochi.

• The old pros – Markov, Plekanec, Gionta and Moen – played smart, low-risk hockey against an explosive team that never could get fully untracked because the Canadiens all worked hard.

• The fourth line chipped in with quality minutes. That will be very important against Pittsburgh.

Fearless prediction: the Bell Centre will be rockin’.

•  •  •

For the first time in many seasons, I watched an English-language telecast of a Canadiens game.

I pick my spots: TSN, with Gord Miller on play-by-play and the incomparable Ray Ferraro offering analysis. Plus James Duthie and a good studio crew: Panger, Darren Dreger and Paul Maurice.

From beginning to end, when I switched over to RDS for L’Antichambre, the production was informative and entertaining.

Could be habit-forming.

 

 

288 Comments

  1. HabFab says:

    Renaud Lavoie – #canadiens Michael Bournival should be in the warm up tonight. If he is, we’ll know after if he can play vs #penguins

    A hoping and a wishing and a praying….

  2. munch17 says:

    So when Bourque is healthy the obvious lines should be:

    Pleks-Gionta-Bournival
    Eller-Chucky-Bourque
    Briere-MaxPac-Gally
    Prust-Moen-White

    I write this knowing that DD has had a couple of decent games.
    But Briere and Bournival should not be on 4th line.
    I know MaxPac and DD have a special bond but I wonder if this hurts the team.

  3. Luke says:

    This was a week where we could conceivably tally a big fat 0 points. We are sitting with 4 of 4 and a chance at 6 of 6. Outstanding. Seems to have quieted the mob at the gate a bit too. Double outstanding.

    Add to that all the short people being key in these two wins… Well, its just like the Habs are rubbing our noses in it

    Crisp scored the sixth goal last night No celebration. Just a couple quiet fist pumps. Seemed a decent player. Skated well enough for ohl. Positionally sound. Decent defense.

    Ok, back to cooking bacon. happy Saturday folks.

  4. DipsyDoodler says:

    If we won the cup the HIOtariat would be unhappy because it would mean Therrien keeps his job for at least another year.

  5. RAM_TOUGH says:

    What happened to The Dude?

    Guts-Glory-Ram

  6. Maritime Ronn says:

    @ Bill

    The Diaz position on the Habs depth chart – or for that matter on most other playoff bound teams, is what you saw last night.

    A 3rd pairing for Even Strength minutes, and a 2nd pairing PP guy, and a possible small sprinkling of PK time on the 2nd unit when needed.

    Overall, Diaz has some skill, yet would never be a Top 4 in Playoff Hockey. Just think back to the Ottawa playoffs last year…

  7. Max_a_million says:

    Wow we won last night’s game 3-2. The ESPN game recap shows both Ovechkin goals, and a late shot on Budaj when he doesn’t have a stick. Crazy … no highlights of the winning team???

  8. Bill says:

    Reading the comments here, one might think the Habs were shutout at home last night instead of winning a tight road game.

    Lots of positives, as all the players who scored desperately needed a goal. I was really happy for DD when they let his goal stand, although I think it should have been disallowed.

    The team D was fantastic. White and Gorges saved two sure goals last night with ridiculous diving clears.

    It was a game on the road when we didn’t need our star players to win the game for us. That’s always awesome.

  9. Habfan10912 says:

    @Pete. Do you still need help with the avatar? Will gladly help if I can. Jlapate at AOL dot com.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Looks like he got it going, his picture should look familiar to us Jim, it appears to be Pete sitting at the table at CHez Cora’s on Summit Saturday.

      Good to see you posting Peter, was a pleasure to meet you at the Summit!

  10. Bill says:

    Diaz does not suck. He’s actually a pretty good defenceman, from everything I’ve seen.

    I’m expecting him to sign an extension shortly.

  11. Fransaskois says:

    Daniel Briere

    4pts in last 5gp (3g, 1a)

    7pts in 13gp (4g, 3a – .54ppg)

    2 PP goals, 25 shots, +2, 13:39 TOI

    I’d have to say, I’m pretty content with Briere in the last couple of games. He’s primarily been playing out of position this year but is still producing and putting up good numbers. He’s not the big, physical, 30g scorer we want and I think he’s overpaid but, I’m pleasantly surprised by the fact that he doesn’t “suck” as much as people like to think. If he’s moved to centre or continues to play with Gio and Plekanec, I think he’ll be more consistent and end up having a solid, if unspectacular, year for the team.

  12. Morning Jimmy!

    Best tandem in hockey right now, well next to Reimer and Bernier :lol:

    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    http://www.Sholi2000.com
    Custom Sports Figures
    Summit Member 1.29.31.33

  13. Habfan10912 says:

    So glad to hear Bornival has no broken bones. He has what some describe as a heavy shot. Last night was another example if his shot not saved cleanly by the goalie. Seems to happen often.
    To our friends in Hamilton, is this something you’ve seen before?

  14. HabinBurlington says:

    Kinda hoping Grabovski scores 4 goals tonight and celebrates Joe Thornton style in front of the Leafs bench tonight.

  15. jeffhabfan says:

    Big win for the boys. Had a big 1st period and played a great road game. If we win tonight we will have had a great week as we are starting to score more which makes them more fun to watch.GO HABS GO.

  16. Hobie Hansen says:

    Always a great game when the Habs win, my buddy Travis Moen scores a goal, Crankshaft is in the lineup and PK Subban drops the gloves! Fun to watch lat night!

  17. DipsyDoodler says:

    Le Tigre made a good point regarding PK on the PK last night. He said everyone can play defence. I agree. Putting PK on the PK would be like drinking that ’05 Chateauneuf du Pape with a hamburger. Not that a hamburger isn’t good, but it doesn’t need a great wine. A PK doesn’t need genius, it only needs sound positional play and effort.

  18. Maritime Ronn says:

    It’s always a treat to watch Sid perform, and while the past doesn’t dictate the future, Sid has played well against the Habs.

    22 games played – 13 goals/32 points.

    And while that may look extreme, Sid’s numbers against Philly are off the charts:
    45 games played: 30 goals/74 points.

    To show what a great player he truly is, Sid has scored more points than games played, against 26 of the 30 NHL teams.

    The only exceptions are 4 Western Con. teams ( Det-St.Lou-SJ-Van) where has has only played the between 4 and 7 games against them in his career

    http://www.hockey-reference.com/players/c/crosbsi01/splits/

  19. DipsyDoodler says:

    What is a “textbook road game”? If we win on the road or we lose at home, it’s always because the winning team played a “textbook road game”. It seems to mean that the away team scored more goals than the home team.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Dipsy
      What that may mean is that there is less pressure to ‘put on a show’ for the home fans. Also, playing in front of your own fans adds some pressure from the get go to win.
      On the road, expectations are low and perhaps players can better concentrate on the game itself.

    • Lafleurguy says:

      And also avoiding giving the refs any reason to call chintzy penalties. Budaj’s first four saves were good ones. Moen didn’t shoot wide. And Davy got a call, ’cause maybe Murph’ in TO didn’t want to be perceived as anti-short guy.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Dipsy, Ronn, Guy.
      Was wondering the exact same thing recently, and also wondering is it a term whose currency has only really emerged relatively recently.

      Despite those valid-looking replies, Ronn and Guy, I have to say that it still has a kind of mystical quality for me. I’m wondering is it more of a commentary thing than a player/coach thing. (“Ok guys, be sure to keep your “Road Game” playbooks in your carry-on luggage so you can study them during the flight to Toronto.” Naaaaaaah!)

  20. HabFab says:

    Tonight we finally get to face the JM trap. Apparently the Pens do it better then we did :)

  21. John Q Public says:

    I ❤ Diaz.

    I ❤ Eller.

    Free Subban Now.

  22. sheds88 says:

    After watching the mcgrattan / batch fight from last night, I gotta says mcgrattan holds the belt right now. That guys is a beast that will take a shot just to land one and is relentless. I was at the game last year when he fought bordeleau and was amazed.

  23. HabFab says:

    HabsWorlds Q1 grades for the Hab forwards;
    http://www.habsworld.net/article.php?id=3258

  24. HabFab says:

    Renaud Lavoie – No broken foot for Michael Bournival. He won’t be 100% for a few days.

    But can he play?

  25. Habitoban says:

    Kudos to White. Could only catch the 3rd period but again saw some good play out of White. He has really improved his game this year despite limited ice time. His PK is strong, he is skating well and with purpose, and is even showing some offensive smarts. He is also playing disciplined hockey (haven’t check his face of #s). Maybe dropping down on the “enforcer” depth chart has taken some pressure off him so he can concentrate on hockey instead of being distracted by his unofficial role as resident tough guy. I will leave to others to determine the full impact of the haircut on his game.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      “Maybe dropping down on the “enforcer” depth chart has taken some pressure off him”

      Excellent point.

      Have always loved what he brings, meaning I cringed every time he crossed the “line” referenced below. His survival on the Habs — maybe in the league — depended on him fixing that aspect of the game. It’s beginning to look as though perhaps he has.

    • BJ says:

      He has now become an important part of the team. Good to see, as he visited the “doghouse” a few times and probably played with a lot of stress as he was on a very, very short leash. And good comment re. the enforcer perspective.

  26. bostonantifan says:

    Does anyone know how to add an avatar/picture to a profile? I used to have a picture on my profile, but when the site was upgraded, the picture disappeared. I’ve tried editing my profile, but didn’t see anywhere to add a picture. Thanks in advance!

  27. HabFab says:

    Weekly Prospect Stats Update;

    QMJHL
    Fucale – 22GP – 16-5 – 2.75 GAA – .893 Svs%
    Gregoire – 23GP – 16G + 15A – 29 PIM
    Hudon – 25GP – 11G + 18A – 47 PIM
    Reway – 21GP – 11G + 23A – 24 PIM

    OHL
    Crisp – 24GP – 8G + 8A – 61 PIM
    McCarron – 21GP – 3G + 5A – 35 PIM
    Vail – 22GP – 11G + 18A – 17 PIM

    WHL
    Bozon – 27GP – 7G + 13A – 21 PIM
    Thrower – 21GP – 8G + 13A – 44 PIM

    NCAA
    Bennett – 11GP – 0 + 3 – 6 PIM
    Cichy – 7GP – 0 + 0 – 0 PIM
    Didier – 11GP – 0 + 2 – 18 PIM
    MacMillan – 10GP – 2G + 2A – 8 PIM

    USHL
    Sullivan – 4GP – 0 + 0 – 4 PIM

    Europe
    Collberg – 19GP – 1G + 3A – 6 PIM
    de la Rose – 23GP – 3G + 4A – 12 PIM
    Lehkonen – 23GP – 4G + 9A – 4 PIM

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Thanks for doing this Frank. Saves this lazy Jim from doing his own research. CHeers bud.

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      Interesting that Dalton Thrower has one more goal and as many assists as Tim Bozon, in fewer games played. The guy is having a great season, the Vancouver papers sing his praise, and so do the play-by-play guys. Good for him for overcoming a disappointing season last year, and facing up to the Canadiens’ decision to not offer him a contract. Yet. I can’t imagine it’ll take much longer before he’s sewn up.

      I saw Tim Bozon play last season and he wasn’t unbelievable or head and shoulders above everybody else, but you did notice him. The Blazers used him in all situations, and he was always around the puck, making smart plays. And this was after he was split off the powerhouse line he went on a tear with at the start of last season. This year, I was expecting more from him.

      I’ll try to go to Vancouver and watch the Giants vs. Kootenay game December 4 and see if I can find out more. Any West Coast HIO members interested in joining me?

      ———————————————————————–
      … you know, because there’s no way hundreds of overcompetitive stars with massive egos would ever cheat to gain an edge with hundreds of millions of dollars at stake.–Bill Simmons

      http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/

  28. durocher says:

    I was at the game last night. My first take away is that the Canadiens are a “team” — they stick up for one another in obvious ways (Subban fighting Brouwer) and subtle ways (Pacioretty skating by and giving some words to Chimera after Chimera said something to Gally11). Second, the Caps had some blue chip chances, but Budaj was able to shut the door and/or the puck didn’t bounce their way. In other words, it easily could have been a Caps victory. Third, Diaz sucks — he missed a wide open net, can barely keep the puck in from the point, can’t hit the net from the point, and is soft in the defensive zone. Fourth, Emelin should be on the point on the PP — we scored when he was on the point on the PP, and we should continue to use him there. Fifth, Murray is huge and can knock down pretty much anyone, but he has trouble clearing the zone. He needs to learn how to sky the puck out of the zone.

    Go Habs Go!

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Always great to have feedback from the rink, D.

      Question: were you pro- or anti-Diaz, or neutral, before attending the game.

      Love seeing Emelin on the the PP 2nd unit.

      • durocher says:

        Admittedly anti before the game — only reinforced by being there.

        Best part of the day was seeing Moen, Gio, Gorges, and Murray before they hopped in a cab together after practice

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          Nice! Was the cab leaning conspicuously on one side as it drove off?

          On Diaz: I’ve no doubt you went along hoping to be persuaded the other way. Always disappointing when a negative view is further reinforced by the evidence.

          • durocher says:

            There are some players I’ve been tough on on this site — like Pleks and Moen. But after seeing them last night, I’ll say I was wrong to underestimate their value.

    • Forum Dog says:

      I’d like to see Emelin on the second PP unit with Diaz. He has more offensive ability than either Bouillion or Gorges IMO.

      I also liked Murray out there last night. Didn’t play much and is never going to wow anybody with his skating or skill, but he is a absolute bull out there and he makes people hurry passes or tip-toe around the net in the defensive zone. Limited ice and situational use are the key to him being effective.

    • Ozmodiar says:

      I’d say everything is bang on except for the Diaz commentary. Offensively, yeah, he sucks this year, but he’s picked up his defensive game. He plays a sound game in the defensive zone – closing passing lanes, blocking shots, being in a good position, using his stick. Heck, on the PK the other night I even saw him clear the crease a few times. I saw a Wild player go flying and thought, “Hey, who did that? Diaz?!?!? Crazy!”. Anyway, MT wouldn’t keep playing on the PK if he were Kaberle-like in the d-zone.

      I guess if I had to sum up his play, i’d say he’s playing a lot like Gorges.

      • durocher says:

        Maybe it’s a function of expectations, that Diaz was supposed to bring some offensive production. Offensively, he’s disappointing. On D, I think the comparison to Gorges is a good one.

    • third generation haber says:

      This is Diaz’s UFA contract year. I’m praying we trade him by the deadline for absolutely anything. He’s way too soft and scared for play-off hockey and doesn’t produce anywhere near enough offense to compensate for it. I’d much rather see Tinordi or even Drewiskie clearing our goal crease come playoff time, and I’m sure they can both block as many shots as Diaz does. They won’t need to back in on the goaltender in-order to do so.

      Opposition forwards are supposed to feel some hesitation when they cross our blue line at full speed. Diaz is a smaller form of Breezer.

      I have a bad feeling he’ll be re-signed to a 4 year deal because he “works hard” or “has character”, as if either of these qualities make-up for sucking!!! If I thought he had a hope of becoming the next Robidas, I’d keep him, but he doesn’t have the heart to play like a warrior.

      MB, please get rid of this cream-puff ASAP!
      j.p. murray

  29. Arrow77 says:

    Boone, let’s not pretend Crosby never takes any dumb penalties, or have we forgotten the opening faceoff of the 7th game of the playoff that allowed the Habs to take the lead and the momentum?

    Both Ovechkin and him are likely candidates to have their wires crossed and I would try the same tactic tonight also.

  30. JF says:

    Perhaps fans should try to be a bit more patient with the team, the GM, and the coach. Bergevin has been repeatedly lambasted on this site for the Desharnais contract and for his off-season signings, Therrien has been criticized for his allocation of ice-time and rumoured to be losing the room, and half the players have been castigated as useless.

    But we kept ourselves afloat during the rash of injuries, largely due to excellent goaltending and special teams. Now, with the team likely as healthy as it’ll be at any point in the season, the offence is getting on track, slumping players are finding their games, and we’re starting to look like the team that spent most of last season battling for top of the Conference.

    It was a great effort by everyone in red, white, and blue. Just to mention those who have received little or no praise this year, White, Moen, and Gorges all played excellent games. White made the save of the game and seems this year to have identified the line he shouldn’t cross. He plays a gritty game but has stopped taking undisciplined or self-indulgent penalties. Gorges was a favourite whipping boy last year, but he’s been very solid so far this season. I wouldn’t have thought he had it in him to make such a lovely pass as he made to Brière on the third goal. And Brière, after a slow start, seems to be finding his groove. He’s much more involved, he’s making things happen, he’s often to be found near the net. He was certainly not Bergevin’s first choice, but he’s definitely showing that he can contribute.

    Maybe, just maybe, Bergevin has the glimmerings of an idea of how to run a hockey team. Maybe, just maybe, David Desharnais doesn’t totally suck and hasn’t mysteriously lost all his skills, and his contract is not an albatross of Gomezian proportions. And finally, it is even remotely possible that Michel Therrien is a decent coach.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      “Maybe, just maybe, Bergevin has the glimmerings of an idea of how to run a hockey team.”

      What are you suggesting?! That We DON’T?!

    • Mattyleg says:

      I’m with JF.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Arrow77 says:

      There are things patience can show you but there are things that are obvious right away. We don’t know how much offense Brière and Desharnais will produce but we do know they’re small and that the team is too small upfront. We also know that Murray and Parros are currently considered 7th defenseman and 13th forward (if that) and that they won’t help the team much that way.

      The team is currently mediocre but really not that far from being very good. That’s why Therrien and Bergevin’s mistakes stands out so much.

    • third generation haber says:

      I believe that criticism toward MB is fully justified when he makes moves that don’t help our chances in the playoffs. If your goal is the cup, and it should be, then you make sure that your team is, at the very least, tough enough to survive the playoffs.

      Cup teams are talented, fast, and tough; they’re extremely difficult to play against. The have a mean streak; there’s nothing polite or cute about them. I know MB inherited a mess, but the DD extension is an example of inexcusable ineptitude. Casual fans like myself could instantly see if was a big mistake.

      No team with Diaz, DD, Gionta, Briere, and the cube all playing together will survive a cup run. Notice I didn’t include Gallagher because it’s softness, not size that’s the real problem.

      j.p. murray

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        “Casual fans like myself could instantly see if was a big mistake.”

        Consider this challenge for the casual fan: get rid of all those players you list because you see little or no value in them. What exactly do you expect to get back for them? Will what you get really bring you closer to the Cup?

        You say, If your goal is the Cup. First, can’t we assume every team’s goal is the Cup? Second, do you mean, the Cup NOW or the Cup when the new management’s strategy starts to come to fruition?

        If you want it now, and suppose MB sold the farm and got us there next June, when could we expect the next one? Imo it would not be in 2015 or any time soon after that.

        Or, if you mean the goal is to push for the Cup consistently within the next couple of seasons and beyond, why would you conclude that the GM is guilty of “inexcusable ineptitude” after less than two half seasons with the team?

        Your post suggests that your expectations are rooted less in reality than in impatient fandom (from which most of us do indeed suffer).

    • SteverenO says:

      @JF – you had me until the last line . It is NOT even remotely possible that Therrien is a decent coach.

      Although we won the game last night Therrien had one of his worst outings.

      The Habs enjoyed 9 minutes and 19 seconds of play with the man advantage, and scored one goal. Breaking down the PP TOI by player:

      PPTOI- PPGs- Season avg Minutes per PPG.

      Pacioretty 4:17 -0 – 5.9 mins per PPG
      desharnais: 4;14 – 0 – 12 mins per PPG
      Gallagher: 4:17- 0- 9 mins per PPG

      Galchenyuk: 2:34-0 – 6.7 mins per PPG
      Eller: 2:37- 0 – 7.3 mins per PPG
      Prust; 1:04 -0 – 5.2 mins per PPG

      Briere: 3:19- 1 5.5 mins Per PPG
      Plekanec: 2:28- 1 4.8 mins per PPG
      Gionta: 2:28 – 1 5.5 mins per PPG
      Bournival- 0:00 – 0 — 3.8 mins per PPG

      In the third period starting from 5:34 to 10:27 a span of 4 minutes and 53 seconds we had 4 minutes of play with the man advantage.

      Of the 4 minutes, Desharnais line played 1 minutes and 49 seconds,and Eller’s line played 1 minute and 58 seconds.

      Plekanec’s line? 13 seconds.

      Turns out we won the game anyway, but a PPG to put ahead by 2 would have “sealed”the victory.

      By not playing his most productive PP line in two third period power plays,Therrien increased the CAPs chances of tieing up the game and decreased the HABs chances for victory.

      People will respond saying that you cannot criticize the coach because the Habs have the third best PP in the league, but the truth is the HABs have the BEST PP unit in the league, when Plekanec ,and Gionta and either of Bournival, or Briere, or Bourque play the left wing, and a very mediocre PP when any other of their lines are on the ice.

      The fact that the coach either does NOT recognize this fact,or chooses to ignore it is, or at least it should be, a HUGE concern.

      lets look another of the coaches ice time management decisions:

      Bournival played a total of 6:55 seconds, only 3 shifts( 1.49) in the third period. Does the coach consider Bournival to be a defensive liability? (The numbers indicate that he has been one of our best defensive forwards having been on the ice for only 5 GA in 222 minutes of Even strength ice time. Moen, who got double shifted in the third period has also been on the ice for 5 GA this season, in 155 minutes of even strength ice time. Moen would have to play his next 67 minutes without a goal being scored against his team for his defensive record to be equal to Bournival’s.

      Murray playing only 39 seconds shorthanded- and only 3 minutes even strength in the third. If he ‘s not going to kill penalties and is not trusted with a one goal lead in the third, why is he in the lineup?

      regards,

      Steve O..

      • The Jackal says:

        That PPTOI / PP points per minute stat is very misleading and does not support what you’re trying to say.
        The PP has scored lots of goals with the players you mention and their presence bolstering the PP seems to be more incidental than actually a cause of them being there. They’re good players but the PP is driven by Markov and PK, any of our top 9 can do a decent job with them QB’ing the PP.

        ______________________
        Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  31. AndyF says:

    I posted this on a dying thread last night…

    Did any of you catch the part of the RDS broadcast where Benoit Brunet was giving Max Pacioretty advice on how not to get injured in the NHL? Hahahahahaha!!!

  32. Dust says:

    Question of the Day. IS DD playing better? or is he riding the coat tails of two good wingers again?

    • 4loorplay says:

      Who cares as long as it produces points.

      Nirvana is earned…

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      Here’s another question.

      Even if it is true that DD needs good wingers to produce effectively, might it also be true that he produces better than Pleks or Eller in the same circumstances?

    • IdleNoMore says:

      The real question should be how long until dd and patchy patch are dealt as a package. Their value can’t get much higher!

      “He was chewing Juicy Fruit gum, I didn’t know whether to shake his hand or kiss him”

    • Mattyleg says:

      No, I’d say that he still really really sucks, and if he were alone on the ice against the Capitals, they would expose all of his weaknesses in a second.

      It’s a shame that he needs wingers to be an effective centre.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • third generation haber says:

      I would say it’s his linemates. Regardless, he’s paid to produce a high rate and doesn’t and is invisible in the playoffs. He’s always one mild check away from landing on his butt. Simply too easy to play against.

      j.p. murray

  33. PETER PETER PETER Team Slovakia #1, man oh man Sochi is going to be interesting.

    and in Washington they are saying ……Neuway, Neuway Neuway.

    There’s a game where fans are saying play Holtby! They have three days off after the back to back, and the two points lost last night could be the killer in a horrible Eastern conference.

    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    http://www.Sholi2000.com
    Custom Sports Figures
    Summit Member 1.29.31.33

  34. Ian Cobb says:

    Not a pretty win, but It was never in doubt! Two points without giving up one to our conference for a tie.

    Really! We worked hard and rolled 4 lines was the key, but the two points belongs to Budaj for sure.

    I sure hope Bornival can get his skate on for tonight. Without him on the 4th line we are down playing Crosby’s gang with just three lines. Not a good thing.

    The P.K. had an interesting night, having a fight that he won, and he did not play his game after, he over handled and gave up the puck that Budaj bailed him out of a couple times.

    Rolling 4 lines is working for Therrien, especially having Gallagher and Bornival energizing their lines.

    It will be a faster game tonight, and how many mistakes we make out there, will dictate if we beat these guys from Pittsburgh.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Morning Ian.

      Further to that, do posters believe we are a better team than the one that tied the Pens 1-1 last spring?

      • Ian Cobb says:

        Mike! This team is carrying some very young players that need more seasoning. As they mature the team overall will be playing better. This is a team that if healthy can beat any team in the league now. But over the course of this season we will just squeak into the play offs.

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          Sounds good, Ian, and pretty much how I see it: the long view, patience (still) required.

          Although on several occasions so far this season you could have legitimately reversed your first sentence there: “These very young players are carrying this team”.

  35. Maritime Ronn says:

    Mr. Boone mentioned that he switched to TSN from RDS last night…

    Too bad there is not a TV option where you could 100% tune out commentary and only listen to the sounds of the game and fans.

    A few years back, some network had audio difficulties with its announcers for several minutes when the game started, and only the sounds of the game were picked up.

    Not being forced to listen to the constant play by play and never ending cliche babble by supposed support experts was terrific.
    You actually heard the shots – the hits – the checks…so much better than the talk.

    • habcertain says:

      The actually did that a numbers of years back, the feedback was not positive.

    • Caesar says:

      The CBC or TVA had some people on strike a few years ago (maybe only in Quebec -not sure) and they broadcasted complete games with no commentary. I loved it, not too many others did. It took a while to get used to. I have also watched games where they mic the ice and boards and it is great when they put it all together. I think the Vcr Olympics had those mics

    • DadidolizedDougHarvey says:

      I had been dreaming of that for years, loved it when it happened , I notice so much more when the play-by-play guys are not guiding my eyes and interpretation. I’d love to have that option again.

    • bostonantifan says:

      Interesting you mention this. Back in the mid-80′s, there was a tv channel called SportsChannel New York. They actually broadcast an entire hockey game (I believe it was an Islanders game) with no announcers, only the “sounds of the game and the fans”. They promoted it as an experiment, but they never did another. It was extremely entertaining. I don’t know about others, but I’ve been watching hockey for over 40 years, and I don’t need an “analyst” to teach me the game. I used to enjoy the old CBC Hockey Night in Canada when Danny Gallivan and Dick Irvin treated viewers as intelligent fans.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Surely we can’t be far from the day when you hit a button on your remote and the commentary is gone, leaving only the sounds of the game and the crowd.

  36. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Yikes, it’s a bit scary posting with the Edit function still busted. Also unpleasant when you spot a boo boo in your post.

    Stu, what’s the forecast?

  37. HabFab says:

    Video report from Dogs TV on last nights games, not many replays but interesting in commentary provided by Stephane Lebeau. Now an Assistant Coach in Hamilton;
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QfUZrbxO5mA

  38. fun police says:

    nice road win. Game ended up being closer than it should have been. I still don’t like that moen was moved into briere’s spot. to me, that indicated a defensive mindset that took over after a 3-0 lead. i don’t understand why a team would move away from what is working in order to play a prevent defence.

  39. 24 Cups says:

    MT has stated that Bournival has a bruised foot and will be a game time decision. I wonder if Leblanc or Blunden are still in Montréal? If not, it will be Parros which means the Habs will have no legit 4th line.

  40. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Can’t comment on PK having stayed up only for the first period (so I saw him go after Brouwer).

    But it’s interesting that there’s the full spectrum of opinion here today concerning how well or otherwise he played last night.

    Further to my excessive pontification on projection/speculation below, I would venture that it would not be reasonable to wonder about the complicated place PK currently occupies mentally. The achievement of the Norris brings further expectation, as does his Olympic opportunity, on top of being a league superstar and his heightened responsibilities with the Habs, his contract negotiations, and of course the ever-present scrutiny of the media, both local and wider.

    I had to cope with stuff when I was 24, but nothing like all that. Should he just be able to deal with all that? Do his natural gifts include having a mental constitution made from kryptonite.

    If yes, then PK: get back on your game and don’t wimp out mentally!

    If no, then maybe allowances might need to be made.

  41. Habfan10912 says:

    Just finished watching last nights game. A tremendous road win. I’ll take 2 points out of the Verizon Center anytime.

    I am on the anti fighting side. Staged fights have no place in the game and should be met my game misconducts and suspensions. I have a better tolerance from the emotional or standing up for a teammate fight.

    Last night will go a long way in earning further respect for PK. After the wrestling match, the Habs bench was obviously pleased with PJ led by an exuberant Prust.

    All though I’d have loved the coach to say he loved a teammate defending another, I can live with+if I have to) MT saying he doesn’t want PK to make a habit of it. Showed respect for your teams best player.

    Other thoughts:
    Briere looked quick and went to the net often.
    Budaj was once again solid. A road win with your backup. Great!
    Gionta looked good once again.
    Emelin is a very good dman.
    Good game by Gorges.

    Happy morning to all.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Hi Jim.
      Agree with your views on fighting. Alas, can’t always get my head and heart (or brain and guts?) to agree. Hence, while I disagree with fighting, I liked what PK did (even though I’m not certain the hit warranted it…). I just hope it was all out of team spirit and not borne of other accumulating frustrations.

    • habcertain says:

      I thought the game went downhill after Briere went to the 4th line. That line lost all it’s O power.

    • Cal says:

      Hey Jim. Really liked PK’s response to that attempted head shot on Markov by Brouwer. I also really liked how well he defended last night, despite that minus on the score sheet. PK was a physical force last night. So was the Emelinator and Murray.
      As for the rest, the team put together a very solid road win.

  42. IdleNoMore says:

    Any reason no one tuned up/took a run at Ovy after dumping our captian last night?

    Also nice to see emelin still throwing the big hits! Sad though he’s going to have to put up with BS after everyone one of them.

    “He was chewing Juicy Fruit gum, I didn’t know whether to shake his hand or kiss him”

  43. Maritime Ronn says:

    Question for Hab Fab

    I want to get down to the Halifax Metro Center and watch Fucale and Drouin and also want to catch some drafted habs prospects in the “Q”
    I know you have that info at your fingertips so can you please post the names of the Habs draft picks presently playing in the Q
    Tks in advance

    • 24 Cups says:

      Frank – It’s too bad the three stars of the game for Hamilton are not legitimate prospects.

      Glad to see Morgan Ellis playing again although it appears he’s also fallen off the CHUM chart.

    • Lafleurguy says:

      8,002 attended the game with Habs being on TV, meaning, a) some Syracuse fans came along for the ride, and b) some “everyday-people” got to watch live pro hockey at the Bell. We pay 26 bucks for prime seats in Hamilton.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

  44. HABZ24 says:

    Good game again.the habs engine has been tinkered with firing on a few more cylinders now, briere and desharnais putting pts up.what happened to gallager and galchenyuk? Invisable .i prefer murray playing over frankie.b .fearless prediction for tonight habs win 3-2 in a shootout

    GO HABS GO

    • HABZ24 says:

      I dont get this olimpic debate,first of all arent the olimpics supposed to be Amateurs only? If ur getting paid ur not an amateur anymore.pros shouldnt be allowed in the olimpics period. Hockey in olimpics is basiclly a worldwide allstar game divided into countrys its wrong.

      GO HABS GO

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Gallagher invisible?

      It’s not always about Scoresheet.
      In the win against the Wild, his going to the net and winning puck battles was directly responsible for 2 of Max’s 3 goals.

      No one could ever argue that he doesn’t make his line mates better.
      When he was on the Eller line, they were the best.
      Now look at how he has transformed Max and Davey…and let’s not forget that including last night, 21 year old Gallagher has played in a grand total of 71 NHL games for the Habs.

      19 year old Galchenyuk?
      He had a goal against the Wild, and is now leading ALL Habs forwards in points with 16 in 23 games.

      That was accomplished playing only the 7th highest average minutes per game for all Habs forwards.

      • monmick says:

        Showed lots of hustle in beating an opposing player on a potential icing and making a play… but I guess this is becoming pretty typical for him.

        ~~~> Mathematically eliminated…

  45. 24 Cups says:

    Gary Bettman’s new playoff format is already showing signs of being grossly unfair.

    In the West, there are only nine teams left in the race for eight playoff spots as Vancouver sits four points back of 8th place. The other five teams are basically sucking wind at the 23 game mark of the season. Talk about anti-climatic.

    In the East, the top seven teams are just five points apart. Montreal is in 8th spot with a four point lead on New York and a six point lead on Ottawa, Philly and Carolina. Montreal’s first round opponent would be either Boston or Pittsburgh, a reality that probably won’t change if the Habs finish the year in 7th or 8th spot.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Good analysis.

      BRING IT ON!!!

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      A little early to be counting out so many teams in the West.
      At this point, Edmonton (again) Calgary, and Winnipeg don’t look very good.
      As for the remaining 11 teams, there are still about 60 games to be played. Vancouver, Dallas, and Nashville are still in the hunt and far from out of it.

      • 24 Cups says:

        Ronn – I was just applying the Elliotte Friedman formula to the standings. Vancouver is certainly one of the nine contenders but Dallas and Nashville have a steep uphill climb being eight points back. Factor in three point games, as well as the reality that Dallas and Nashville are in direct competition both in terms of division and 8th place seeding, and you quickly come to the conclusion that it’s a steep uphill climb.

        Of course there’s always the Philly example of a quick turn around so who knows.

  46. rhino514 says:

    LOVE that DD is really battling out there and that Briere is beginning to get some points. A week ago it looked like both were done. This is great news for the habs. Is Briere actually playing left wing now?
    On the other side, Gio has now been cold for a long time. Is his decline imminient?

    • Lafleurguy says:

      Think “slump.” His breakaway miss reminds one of the near winner in OT game seven. Second-best stickwork to prevent a goal, next to Ryan White’s superb effort. The PK was 5-on-4 at the time, the team having killed off the 5-on-3, a pivotal moment in the game.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

      • Habfan10912 says:

        I agree. Not a big Gionta supporter here but in the last 2 games he played very well.

        • Lafleurguy says:

          Mornin’, J. I remember thinking (but not posting) about how awful Gionta looked during the 4-game slide, and thoughts of will this team ever score more than one goal? I thought BG had a strong game last night, especially defensively. May I point out the most important Jimisms, and those are diplomacy and friendliness.

          “May you live in interesting times.”

  47. Maritime Ronn says:

    Absolutely loved PK coming to the defense of one of his team mates.

    Far from being a fan of the idiot “Staged Fights”, what PK did last night will go far in terms of solidifying team spirit.
    Once the mini tussle was over, every Hab player was banging his stick on the boards.
    Within the next 3 minutes of the PK gesture, the Habs scored 2 more goals to make it 3-0.

    What Coach Therrien said was right in that it should not become a habit for PK moving forward.
    That mentioned, all pros will tell you that a team gets fired up when players do something out of their confort zone or expectations,

    That could be a usual non goal scorer scoring a goal – a known non hitting player making a big hit, or in the case of PK last night, a non fighter dropping the gloves and helping out a mate
    Even some of the greats do what PK did last night.
    Guys like Crosby, Toews will drop their gloves a couple of times each year…for the team

  48. Old Bald Bird says:

    That was a great effort last night. As much as I hated their dull play of the past few weeks, their attention to team D during that time may have made them a better team in the long run. We shall see. No implosion tonight, OK. Does anyone remember when Saturday nights belonged to Les Boys?

  49. 24 Cups says:

    The Habs will be playing with house money tonight against Pittsburgh as this week’s objectives have already been met. A win on the road against a playoff rival with your back-up goalie in net guarantees four out of six points. I’ll take that any week in the year. It also means the Habs can roll the dice tonight against Pittsburgh knowing that they have Carey Price in net. Should be a doozy against the reclamation project known as Marc-Andre Fleury.

    This also was accomplished while PK Subban played one of his worst games in recent memory. Undisciplined play and unnecessary turnovers made him look like a first year rookie. He certainly didn’t help his Team Canada status.

    From the let’s be fair department, it’s only right to mention that Daniel Briere scored again as he now has three goals and four points in his last five games.

    I own Guy Lafleur and Dick Duff Hab jerseys but if I had to purchase one to wear to tonight’s game it would be Brendan Gallagher’s, hands down. This 21 year old, 5th round pick has been Montreal’s best forward from the opening of training camp.

    • Lafleurguy says:

      Good points on Gallagher and P.K. The let’s-be-fair-department has been ransacked.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

    • Coozeman says:

      RE: Subban not helping his Team Canada Status, I think that is the very problem for Subban is trying to do too much to help his Team Canada Status due in large part to the media frenzy (TSN – Toronto Sports Network) sparked in part by MT’s comments regarding Subban over the past few weeks! Subban just needs to do what he does best and play, not to impress Stevie Y and Canadians, but rather to help the Canadiens! I agree, he looked aweful last night!

      DD and DB look to be rounding into form, if this is a sign of what is to come, MB doesn’t have as much pie on his face afterall and the Habs have the depth that we hoped for prior to the puck dropping on the season!

      Hope Bournival isn’t injured seriously for he animates the two otherwise lifeless corpses on his line!

      I like what Gally brings to Patches and DD on that line but it seems as though Chucky and Eller are missing the chemistry he brought to their line.

      Murray, inept in every aspect of defence unless someone runs into him… Watching him last night was utterly painful!

      Liked the adjustment MT made last night by switching Moen and DB to put a bigger body on Ovy, good in game adjustment!

      I am liking the upward curve we are on, hopefully we keep it going tonight against Crosby and Co.

      Happy Hockey Night in Canada everyone!

  50. Maritime Ronn says:

    Good morning

    Heck of a road win for the Habs.

    In a few comments below, the MT dislikers are again trying to find a non issue to complain about – this time some supposed lack of PK praise for his fight and sticking up for Markov.

    During the short MT presser, he was very low key throughout be that thoughts and comments concerning either Gio, Davey, Max, Michael, and PK.

    What Coach MT did say about Subban was that there is a fine line – that you don’t want your best players defending others and that it should not become a habit….and for that, MT is 100% right.

    The Habs cannot afford to have PK consistently in the box serving majors and possibly misconducts, nor should PK risk injuries to his hands, shoulders, arms, or because of his lack of fighting experience, a possible concussion.
    There was nothing wrong with MT’s remarks.

    • Lafleurguy says:

      Mornin’ Merrytimes…..it’s been safe to post for a few hours. Repetition compulsion abounds with opinions such as the ones you refer to about the coach. You would almost think he was part of the Obamacare rollout. Good hockey instincts by P.K. in stepping up for one of hockey’s elder statesmen currently playing the game, but the results could have been disastorous. Therrien has to continue to coach the way he knows, just as Jacques Lemaire did, to much success, and to much annoyance from player and fan. When Team Canada finished somewhere around 5th in Torino ’06, no doubt there were loud outcries panning the coaching.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

  51. Habitforming says:

    I’ll be expecting royalties on any further use of that name Mr. Boone

  52. sailordan1964 says:

    Ray likes the habs do to Gallagher

  53. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …re a future Captain: …I thoroughly believe PK Subban would make a great Captain

    …both as an inspirational and dynamic leader for His Team-mates, but as well I believe the ‘responsibility’ of being the Captain would bring out another level in PK’s character and maturation

    …I love Josh, but for Me Captain, PK is My guy

    • third generation haber says:

      don’t think any of our current guys are ready to be captain, but Subban needs to earn the respect of the room and his coaches (who are too harsh on him) before he wears the C.

      j.p. murray

  54. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …surprised Mike had not discovered Gord Millar by now, and the guy that rides shotgun with him, Ray Ferraro

    …for Me, long the best play-by-play announcer around, bar none …never empty-air with Gord, knowledgeable and His cadence gets Me pumped and into the game like no other

    …I first listened to his work on international hockey with Our juniors

    …much prefer him over the CBC guys, except Bob Cole …though like many of You complain he is losing it in his old age, there still remains a great sound/music to his voice I still remember from great games of years gone by

    …and I am one that grew up listening to the greatest uber-play-by-play announcer of all time, Danny Gallivan

    …Millar can’t carry Danny’s microphone, but Millar is the best around today in My opinion

    …Ferraro is growing on Me too :)

    • bwoar says:

      Ferraro started out with a hate on for the Habs, and I’m only just now starting to accept him. Miller’s always been good.

      “thoroughbred”

      • Habitant in Surrey says:

        …I agree Ray never seemed thrilled doing Habs games, but the last year He seems to be coming around :)

        …whether he likes Our Team or not, as a colour guy Ray is excellent

  55. CH Marshall says:

    Just another random sidenote at 4am:

    Have always enjoyed JACK TODD’s column. Thank god for HIO.

    • Lafleurguy says:

      Don’t sense sarcasm…..Jack Todd is a fine columnist, but the ethos of HIO is such that it’s fashionable to dump on him. Long before HIO, I was reading and learning from Jack Todd, and some of us have never lived in Montreal.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

  56. CH Marshall says:

    Just looking on capgeek. Vinny has a cap-hit of 4.5 mill until end of 2018 season. Desharnais is 3.5 until end of 2017 season.

    On another note, how I wish I had a second chance to live in montreal!

  57. third generation haber says:

    The debate over who should be our next captain suggests that we really don’t have any ideal candidates. Our best future candidates, IMO, (Chucky, Subban, Bournival) are too young or immature to wear the C at this point.

    Markov is about to enter his declining years, so whether he plays them in Montreal or else where he shouldn’t be a captain. Gorges is certainly captain like character, but not captain like talent.

    I hope we go 1 year without a captain before making a bad choice.

    j.p. murray

    • Habitant in Surrey says:

      …I don’t think Yourself and many others watch closely what Gorges does night in and night out

      …He ain’t ‘great’ at anything, but defensively He’s subtly damn good

      • third generation haber says:

        I couldn’t agree more; Gorges is a defensive team guy and a good leader. I hesitate to name him captain because I believe a captain also needs to be a symbol. On most teams, the captain is a star, an MVP type. Your captain represents the team in many ways. Is this making sense? Iginla, Morrow, Chara, Zetterberg, Sedin, Toews, Crosby, Tavares,…… Gorges??? It just doesn’t feel right.

        j.p. murray

    • bwoar says:

      Subban is the perfect guy to wear the C. He’s not immature whatsoever, he’s a leader and it’s his time. He’s pretty grown up if you
      ask me.

      “thoroughbred”

    • jamman says:

      its too bad Bournival isn’t older, hes a rookie but he is quietly becoming a leader IMO, He’s got the complete package we need in a captain. He’s got grit, he can make plays, bury when given the chance and he blocks shots. Hate to be negative after a win but I dont see Pleks gettin squat now that MT split them up.

      Sure hope he’s ok.

      • third generation haber says:

        With Bournival, we at least know that he will never take a season off. The guy has always been, at every level, a workhorse. The fact that he’s a much greater offensive threat at the NHL level than AHL leaves me baffled.

        On most teams he would be highly utilized and be talked about in the calder race. Too bad we have so many contracts that need to be justified with ice-time.

        j.p. murray

  58. VancouverHab says:

    So what is it about Therrien and his best player? I have said my theory, and will leave it at that. But it is undeniably a huge worry for us poor fans.

    1.] Any alternative explanations for Therrien’s problem?

    2.] Why does his inane “I am going to make Subban a better person” promise get so little attention (if a Canuck coach had said that about the 24 year old Sedins it would still be front page news in the Vancouver papers).

    3.] Any comments on why this gets scant attention from the francophone media? They love Subban, so why the kid-gloves for Therrien?

    • bwoar says:

      People have better things to write about than a non-issue that nobody cares about.

      Therrien does not have a problem with Subban. If you think so, you are mistaken. It is that simple.

      “thoroughbred”

      • VancouverHab says:

        We have our own Mr. Boone wondering why Therrien didn’t praise the praiseworthy actions of his defenceman Subban. Coaches would kill to have the team spirit that Subban displayed: so why is it not praised here, hmm?

  59. Sportfan says:

    People shouldn’t be surprised by the furture Captain remarks, related to Gorges. It has been talked about many times in the past and he’s not a bad defensemen he’s not PK, but not everyone can be PK just like what Grizzles said down below. If Gorges ever wears the C for the CH I’ll be happy for him.

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

    • The Jackal says:

      I’d be happy for him but I’d rather it were someone else.
      I don’t know if he is full C material.
      I’d rather see Pacioretty or Markov get it.

      ______________________
      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

      • D Mex says:

        Not the first time I have seen Markov and, more recently, Pacioretty mentioned as candidates to wear the ‘C’, but I don’t see it.
        Markov seems reluctant to say much, and Pacioretty doesn’t appear to have established himself enough to wear any letter just yet IMO.
        Then again, I also don’t think Ovechkin should be Caps’ Captain …

      • wildwilly says:

        I don’t know if the situation has changed but I remember the last time they chose the captain, Markov made it clear he was not in the running. He apparently just wanted to lead by example and didn’t want the additional stress.

  60. Stevie.Ray says:

    Fearless prediction: habs will be ahead of the leafs in the standings within 10 games.

    • steste11 says:

      I’d say by the end of tomorrow night.

      P.K 2013 Norris Trophy Winner

    • third generation haber says:

      That would be terrible. It’s not worthwhile finishing in the top 4 unless u are a top 4 playoff contender. Otherwise, as we say last season, you’re only reward will be a quick playoff exit and a late draft selection.

      Had it not been for our misleading divisional crown last season, we could have drafted any of: Morin, Mantha, Poirier, or Gauthier in the last draft.

      If the cup is your goal, and it should be, we need to succeed in the play-offs and on draft day.

      j.p. murray

  61. Marc10 says:

    Tip of cap to Budaj for keeping the Caps off the scoresheet on those breakaways.

    My Habs MVP so far is Stephane Waite. He’s been every bit as good as his record in Chicago suggested. Bravo! What a UFA pick up.

  62. Sportfan says:

    SO many random players got a point tonight nice to see that though!

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  63. Sportfan says:

    Missed most of the game shame Gios empty net goal didn’t count and poor Bournival that was a doozy, but I’m glad they won!

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  64. aHabGrowsInBrooklyn says:

    Okay, tenth, but still.

    So damn happy that my good feeling full on TRUMPED Monsieur Boone’s bad feeling.

    Watching the game again. It was so great when Patches was all over DD after the goal. He looked ecstatic for his linemate.

    Also loved seeing Subban stick up for Gionta. Wasn’t much of a fight, but it got a message across about Subban’s North American grit.TM

    All in all, a good game for the Habs, and the Egomaniacal One got two goals, which is all he cares about. (That, and a gold medal at home in Sochi.)

  65. aHabGrowsInBrooklyn says:

    Eighth! Always!

  66. FunkyCrabChairNF says:

    Josh Gorges, future captain? Captain of who? Because I’m hoping he’s not on the team too much longer.

  67. leehammer says:

    Josh Gorges a “future captain”? I think not

    • FunkyCrabChairNF says:

      ahh, ya beat me

      • spos080808 says:

        To you both, why do you say that? Gio will be gone and even if Markov comes back, there is no chance he nor Pleks will be captain. Great assistants, but not vocal enough to have the C in my opinion. Gorges is vocal enough and has been on the team long enough to be able to wear the C. Also, just because he is not the most talented person does not mean he cannot wear the C. So, please, give me someone on this team next season who should have the C over him?

        • FunkyCrabChairNF says:

          I just don’t think he’s good enough to stay on this team with people like Tinordi and Beaulieu in the pipe, and Subban, Emelin, Markov on the roster. He doesn’t hit, and he has no offensive skills. Makes too much money to be on a third pairing.

          • grizzles says:

            Diaz, Bouillon, Murray, Drewiske would all be replaced on this team before gorges, i agree beaulieu and tinordi should be up soon enough but theres room for gorges he’s a solid dman

  68. NLhabsfan says:

    Nice to see the team playing with confidence,Boone is right the TSN guys call a great game,as opposed to CBC anti Montreal BS.

  69. habsfan0 says:

    All of a sudden,DD is playing like he wants another extension.

  70. montreal ace says:

    The blog and the game were very entertaining tonight, nice work Mr. Boone.

  71. adadi says:

    What’s with this coach and PK. I am really disliking MT. He is not the coach to take this team to the races.

  72. tbovs says:

    dmanit!!! 2nd…:(

  73. Just A Guy says:

    first time in a long time I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the habs

  74. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Hi Whatever. Your point about leadership and the captaincy is accurate, but I would disagree with your conclusion, ‘pure folly’, unless you are prepared to argue that 90% of what fans talk about is also ‘pure folly’. 90% of what we opine concerning line combos, player and player-coach relationships, what goes on in NHL headquarters, who we should draft, who should play on the PP/PK, why Pacioretty doesn’t go to the net more, etc etc etc is projection based on our very restricted view of the big picture. That restricted view comprises the action we see on TV (or live for the lucky few), and the glimpses (consisting of better-informed projection) provided by the media (which has expanded in recent years to include things like player tweets and 24CH, but ultimately remains a restricted view).

    We fans, ‘self very much included, normally forget how little we actually know when we give our opinions and argue, which means that by your definition we are all engaged in ‘pure folly’. But without that ‘pure folly’, I would argue, there is no professional sport. There would be little or no income for leagues, owners and players if fans suddenly became self-conscious and wished to avoid the humiliation of engaging in something as undesirable as ‘pure folly’. There would be no discussion in the school-yard or at the water-cooler or in the bar, and the recent growth of web-sites like this one would be reversed. If a fear of ‘pure folly’ confined us to quoting statistics, one of the essentials of following and enjoying professional sports — ie talking about it — would be strangled and the sport would die.

    Please believe I am not attempting to slam you or your comment — it was a comment that stirred up thoughts about the underlying meaning and purpose of professional sport (and about reality, that slippery thing). Indeed, I would of course agree with you further than I did at the start and say that, if HIO can be said to offer a representative sampling, then there is no shortage of folly to be found here, including most of my own posts!

    And I would be able to agree with you fully if you replaced the word ‘folly’ with either projection or speculation, because 90% of the time what fans spout is pure one of those.

    To declare a preference for one player over another as captain is an example of that projection, projection based on what we see on tv and what we absorb from media. That is all any fan does, and without it the sport dies.

    (And for the record, though I like Gorges and what he brings and would not question his leadership qualities, I also would prefer to see PK wearing the C. Give it to your superstar for inspiration, leading by example, and for how it might well maximise his own potential.)

    Cheers

  75. Lafleurguy says:

    You and I can show follyfilled fans how to have fun from failure and how to avoid fomenting foolish foreshadowing of further failure on this forum.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  76. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Fabulous fulminating my flowery friend.


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