About last night …

P.K.Max

Be of good cheer, all you Montrealers who are freezing your hockey bags off in the city’s brutal cold snap.
For one thing, The Atlantic magazine reports that at minus-31C, southern Manitoba is as cold as Mars. Be happy you don’t live in Winnipeg.
And your Montreal Canadiens are hot.
How hot?
Undefeated this year, baby!

In his postgame media scrum, parts of which were telecast by L’Antichambre, Michel Therrien called that crazy Thursday night game in Dallas a big win and the capper of an “excellent” road trip.

Those of us still having nightmares about the game in Carolina may quibble about the coach’s choice of adjectives. But the Canadiens took seven of a possible 12 points on their longest road trip of the season. And they sit fourth in the Eastern Conference, nine points clear of the ninth-place Ottawa Senators, who visit the Bell Centre Saturday night.

Therrien was equally effusive in praise of P.K. Subban, whose goal, three assists and plus-3 in Dallas constituted what the coach called ubban’s best game of the season.

“(P.K.) made good decisions with the puck,” Therrien said. “He took the ice that Dallas gave him and didn’t force anything.”

Slight correction: P.K. may have forced a revision in the thinking of Steve Yzerman and his Team Canada staff. They will announce their choices for Sochi on Tuesday, and all the rumours have P.K. on the bubble … at best.

Only one Canadian defenceman, Chicago’s Duncan Keith, has more points than P.K.’s 33.

Those two brilliant passes that led to goals by U.S. Olympian Max Pacioretty? P.K. displayed the vision and awareness that are ideally suited to the big ice in Sochi.

As for the Subban goal, on which he left Dallas defenders gasping in his wake … here I’ll borrow the words British soccer commentators use to describe the heroics of my man Luis Suarez: “quality” and “genius”.

P.K. is a joy to watch, but you know what?

I half wish Yzerman et al don’t pick him for Team Canada.

Subban would have that much extra motivation to stick it to those responsible for the Sochi snub. 

And for the next 40 games and – inshallah – the playoffs, the Canadiens are going to need a highly motivated P.K.

And a goaltender that’s better than what we saw in Dallas.

No issue there. Carey Price, who will go to Sochi, was out of position several times, giving Dallas some wide-open nets that the Stars obligingly missed.

On two occasions, Price was bailed out by his B.C. homeboy Josh Gorges, whose seven blocked shots included a spectacular skate save. With Alexei Emelin watching from the pressbox, Gorges was paired with Andrei Markov while Francis Bouillon logged almost 21 minutes paired with P.K.

Douglas Murray and Raphael Diaz each played more than 17 minutes – high for a fourth pairing, but it was weird game that yielded some unusual stats:

• Tomas Plekanec was 4-16 on faceoffs after going 6-28 in Carolina.

• The Canadiens could only muster six shots in the first period. On the six-game road trip, they played 13 regulation time periods in which their shot totals were eight or fewer.

• Alex Galchenyuk had less time ToI than every skater except Michaël Bournival and Ryan White. I wonder what goes through the kid’s head watching Tyler Seguin.

The second overall pick of the 2010 draft, Seguin was brought along slowly and used as a winger in Boston. Playing his natural centre position in Dallas, Seguin has racked up 21 goals and 20 assists.

Everyone says it’s only a matter of time before Galchenyuk is moved to centre. But the Canadiens have a logjam at the position.

David Desharnais had a goal and an assist in Dallas. DD, Max-Pac and Brendan Gallagher are the Canadiens best scoring line … by a lot.

Plekanec is a valuable two-way centre who is saddled with a pair of under-performing wingers: Rene Bourque (how did this guy have two 26-goal seasons in Calgary) and Brian Gionta.

Lars Eller scored against the Stars and is developing a physical game. He and Galchnyuk looked better once Bournival replaced Brandon Prust as their left winger.

Then there’s Daniel Brière – zero points and minus-7 in 10 games before becoming a healthy scratch in Carolina and Dallas.

The consensus opinion on L’Antichambre is Brière is toast in Montreal. He’s just not a Michel Therrien player.

Brière is still effective on the PP. But he’s useless as a fourth-liner, and Therrien has tried him just about everywhere, to no avail, on the top three lines.

The Thursday rumour mill had the Canadiens talking to Buffalo, where Brière enjoyed his best seasons.

That’s a situation to keep an eye on as the Canadiens carry their perfect 2014 record forward.

 

 

 

635 Comments

  1. habitunts1 says:

    I see Jagr in Montreal for Gionta and a 2nd rounder come trade deadline
    Also right now if Buffalo is interested in Briere and that hefty contract who would fit best with the Habs from Buffalo ?
    Pleks dosnt go anywhere and Bourque I wouldn’t mind seeing swapped again for Camy

    #10

  2. Bugs says:

    As of 5 mins ago on this site: http://sabrenoise.com/2014/01/03/poll-buffalo-sabres-go-briere/
    Eighty people have voted at 54% Yes to reacquire Danny Bree-Ur.
    For whatever that’s worth.

    Left turn-missin’ L. B. Potter.

  3. Dunboyne Mike says:

    It is entirely possible, isn’t it, that the Buffalo rumours are a smokescreen or a bit of misdirection for something else?

    • Bugs says:

      What, for bringing him into the basement of the Bell and executing him bolshevik-style, then later have the media spin us a tale of him moving to the Congo cuz the trade-talk was too much for him or somethin?

      Love it.
      Think you’ve got it.
      Cheers, mate.

      Left turn-missin’ L. B. Potter.

  4. SmartDog says:

    I wonder if McCarron is looking at Mantha thinking “that could be me”? They even look alike.

    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

  5. SmartDog says:

    People are giving Bergevin a B? Really?
    I’m thinking a C is generous. An F isn’t out of the question.

    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

  6. deggy24 says:

    If you want Galchenyuk to score more (assists and goals), simply move him to the right wing. Might be some trouble clearing defensive zone initially but his best move for outside depth is to the right, and if he chooses to shoot the angle is infinitely better.

    Habs Win!

  7. bwoar says:

    The myth of the ‘huge void’ left by Plekanec’s overdue departure seems to grow in the telling. Or maybe some of you are a bunch of Nervious Nellies.

    “thoroughbred”

  8. Sportfan says:

    LOL Another fake TSN twitter account has mentioned another (this time Dreger) fake Briere trade. It seems to have tricked a member of La Presse this time lol

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

  9. Habitoban says:

    Her is my solution to why PK is said to be on the Sochi bubble: The management strategy for PK has always been one of “tough love.” Don’t over-praise or allow PK to get too comfortable in his position or his sense of importance. Is it possible that, for all these weeks the Canadian Olympic braintrust has been trying to keep PK’s game sharp — and his head fitting his helmet — by making him feel uncertain about his place on the team? Using this approach he will arrive at Sochi with something to prove and will not piss some players by presuming he is a team leader. Possible? Nah, I thought not.

  10. Sportfan says:

    Imagine if we do trade briere and its MTs fault :P Do you thank him or blame him?

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

  11. bobinsask says:

    Sometimes I wonder about the quality of observations made. Bourque played a solid game last night. He was often first on the puck, took the body, came back hard, had some scoring chances and created others yet no mention was made of that. I guess it is easier to just say he didn’t score and then start drawing a bunch of conclusions. When he has a bad game, criticize him but if you want to be taken seriously, give him credit when he plays well.

    It reminds me of the time when the same writer said that while he loved Koivu, it was clear that Gomez was the better player and Koivu was on the backside of his career. As I said, I have to question his powers of observation.

    • FlyAngler says:

      Agreed & he has played a number of similar games lately including the game in Florida in which his would be goal was disallowed on the zebras phantom high stick call………..

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

    • Mike D says:

      Bourque played better than he has recently, but are you saying he had a truly solid game, or just solid in comparison to the lower standards we now have for him?

      On his breakaway in the 3rd period he shot the puck directly at Lehtonen’s chest. I know it’s nit-picky to just look at one play or sequence, but when I saw that, I thought to myself, “typical”.

      I honestly wonder if he’s still hurt or dealing with some post-concussion stuff, and if he is, then I give him a pass. If not, he’s fairgame for criticism.

      – Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      I agree he played a decent game last night. I’m hoping he has a good second half coming up here. Maybe the Olympic break will help him? He actually played well in our short playoff last year.

      • CJ says:

        Agreed. I too felt that Bourque was a strong playoff contributor last spring. His game last night was solid, especially of note was his puck pursuit and willingness to compete in board battles. I also thought that Georges and Diaz deserved recognition for their efforts.

        Let me duck away quick before I get a flying kick in the head…..

    • Habitoban says:

      I try to be a Bourque booster. Last night I thought his skating was fine but he did not use the body the way he has in the past, nor was he as strong on the wall as he can be. When he is using his body he is a physical force out there and he was not one last night. Hope I’m wrong, but as I’ve mentioned before, I suspect that he is suffering post-concussion symptoms from his last “upper body” injury and is shying away from the physical stuff.

  12. DipsyDoodler says:

    Not yet mentioned, but Therrien kind of dissed Gallagher last night.

    You can tell MT is dissing a player because he doesn’t mention him by name. He said we took a stupid penalty in the 3rd. Went out of his way to praise all the scorers but Gally.

    In fairness that was the 2nd game in a row a comeback was sparked during a bad Gallagher penalty.

  13. Plekasuares says:

    There was a comment below about trading Plekanec. As long as Therrien remains the coach this will definitely not happen because of the coachs defensive minded philosophy. The return for Plekanec would have to be super good if MB moves him. What would the return be? (Do not say stasny)

    • IdleNoMore says:

      Too many people dont realise how much a void he would leave if moved. He’s still has speed and a good shot.

      I think he gets a lot of “slack” on here because he isnt 6 Foot +

      am i right?

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

      • krob1000 says:

        I started this crap..and it all was with a viable replacement ie Stastny. The logic was if you move Chucky to center as everyone wants to do you have removed teams 2nd best winger at the same time. So getting rid of another center and moving Chucky means two replacements required. Stastny could be obtained for cash only, Pleks could net top 6 winger or more in return. I think the team ends up further ahead in that case. You have Stastny, Dd and Eller for a year or two. Then you move GAlcehnyuk later when better wingers have come along…but there is a gap between what is in the sstema nd in the lineup at wing.

      • boing007 says:

        Put Bournival back on his line, take Gionta off it and find someone else to complement the trio.

        Richard R

    • Shackles says:

      I like Pleks and I definitely can’t see him traded but the Habs have got to bring someone in who can teach him how to win a faceoff.

    • krob1000 says:

      It was my comment and was completely contingent on signing Stastny (or vbiable Pleks replacement…which I believe Stastny to be)in the offseason and acquiring a good top 6 winger in the deal.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      I love Plekanec but would be willing to trade him and go with Eller, Desharnais and Galchenyuk down the middle in return for a power forward winger.

      I would trade Plekanec and a combination of picks or prospects to Winnipeg for Kane.

      • IdleNoMore says:

        The asking price for Kane would be alot more then that. Try 2 top 6 forwards, Blue Chip and a 1st

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

        • krob1000 says:

          ? that is quite a bit…and would mean Patches is worth more given his contraact is better and he scores more. I think Kane is similar to Patches with less scoring and more physicality….I am not sure I would trade straight up.

    • Timo says:

      Habs will trade Briere to Buffalo for Moulson and Stafford and then trade Plekanec for Briere. Habs get the best of both worlds.

    • Steeltown Hab says:

      My instinct tells me we won’t get fair value in a Plekanecs deal, better off keeping him and transitioning him to 3LC eventually.

      ———————————

      Lars, PK, Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Emelin, Bournival, De La Rose – @J_Perez22

  14. 24 Cups says:

    As of today, Montréal’s odds of making the playoffs stand at 92%.

  15. DipsyDoodler says:

    I see Steve Ott is flavour of the week here on H I/O.

    He’s a typical H I/O type player.

    No flair. Minimal talent. Fights. Also a bit of a jerk.

    Reminds one of the old quote: “Only the mediocre are always at their best.”

    He’s on pace for 20 points and a huge minus this year.

    • Steeltown Hab says:

      He’s a good hockey player. David Bolland type albeit less skilled.

      ———————————

      Lars, PK, Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Emelin, Bournival, De La Rose – @J_Perez22

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      I realize that an unfortunate and unintended double-entendre slipped in there.

      I, of course, was referring to Mr Ott’s hockey on the 3rd line and not to H I/O posters. I can only think of 4-5 H I/Oers at most who exhibit those qualities.

    • Mike D says:

      Ott is like the Center version of Prust, except Ott is a bit of a douche.
      I’d much prefer Ott over Parros.

      What makes Boston’s 4th line so good is that all of them have actual hockey skills in addition to being tough. A 4th line of Moen-Ott-Prust/White would easily rival that and may actually be better (odd man out moves up to the 3rd line). That line can crash, bang, give your team a spark, play good D, pot a few goals, kill penalties, play good minutes, protect a lead, defend a teammate, etc.

      – Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

  16. Habcouver says:

    I would kind of like to see Ott in a Habs jersey, just o he could explain why he licked Halpern’s visor last year.

    Waiting patiently for #25

  17. D Man says:

    Briere, Drewskie and a 1st for Perrault, Martin and Rene Robert.

    You can’t be both a Habs and a Leafs fan

  18. Sportfan says:

    If and this is a big if the trade to Buffalo happened and we traded Diaz would that mean Bealieu is ready to play up here?

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

  19. Hobie Hansen says:

    So TSN 690 is having the conversation on whether on not to resign Brian Gionta and for how much. Are you kidding me?

    He should be traded at the deadline or simply not resigned this summer. By next season I want to see no more than 2 players (Gallagher and Desharnais) under 5’11” playing for the Habs.

    • HardHabits says:

      This ^^^^^^^

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        We can bite the bullet, show some loyalty to our captain by not trading him at the deadline and letting him play one more playoff with us. We should never resign him though.

        • HardHabits says:

          Habs bullets are riddled with teeth marks.

        • 24 Cups says:

          Hobie – I’m starting to think the same way.

          Trading your captain at the deadline when you are basically in the playoffs strikes me as a recipe for disaster. Not to mention the team wouldn’t have anyone to replace him going into the last month of the season.

        • Habcouver says:

          With all due respect, I see loyalty in today’s NHL as a thing of the past. Captain Gionta was originally a Devil, so lets try to reunite him with his brother.
          I can see MB supporting your view but I don’t see it as in the best interest of the team and improving its future.

          Also, I would like to see the Habs name their next captain as a drafted Canadien, like in the past, Koivu or Chelios or Gainey or Cournoyer.

          Captain Subban has a great ring to it!!!

          Waiting patiently for #25

          • Dunboyne Mike says:

            Habcouver, are we deluding ourselves when we speak of differences between the NHLs of today and yesterday? I know I am often guilty of this myself, though when I think more carefully I recognise that business was always an enormous factor. Maybe it’s just more open and unapologetic today. Whichever, I would reckon that the negative impact on team morale of trading your captain (who remains highly respected, hasn’t slept with any team-mates’ wives — cf Chelsea FC — and always plays 100%) before the playoffs could be devastating.

    • Mike D says:

      Gio’s offense has totally dried up, but a lot of posters who want him gone fail to see that he still contributes immensely on the “defensive line” with Pleks, as well as on the P.K.

      I agree this should be the end of Gio’s time with the Habs, but as the intelligent fan base we’re supposed to be, it baffles me how so few people see that Gio still has a positive effect on our team, even if he’s not scoring goals any more.

      – Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

      • IdleNoMore says:

        But he’s great in the room!

        Srsly though, I will stop being a habs fan if they resign him.

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

      • Strummer says:

        Defense isn’t our problem. That’s no reason to retain Gio.
        We suck at scoring 5 on 5 and we are too small up front.

        ______________________________________________________
        “It’s Christmas- not “The Holidays”

        • Mike D says:

          I wasn’t advocating retaining Gio. In fact, I’m in favour of not re-signing him and even trading him at the deadline if we can get a 2nd rounder or better for him.

          All I was trying to say is that some people make it seem like Gio brings nothing anymore, which is not at all true to anyone who watches the game and his play closely. He’s not what he was, but he is FAR from being Gomez 2.0

          – Honestly yours
          Twitter: @de_benny

        • Mike D says:

          Also:

          “Defense isn’t our problem”

          Have you seen the last two games?

          – Honestly yours
          Twitter: @de_benny

        • Timo says:

          I would also argue regarding the defense not being the problem.

    • AliHaba says:

      The only way he is re-signed is if the Habs make a deep play-off run.

  20. krob1000 says:

    I would love to see a study done on right handed vs left handed shoters in the NHL….
    SOmetimes it appears that when dmen(especially RH ones) deke forwards they do so with relative ease. I think the majority of forwards are lefties if my ese do not deceive me. More often than not players deke to their backshand…so a lfety forward would have to reach acorss the rh dman as the rh dman attacks.

    I am nsaying this because I got thinking about PK, and Mike Green…then it got me envisioning Doughty, erik Karlsson, Justin Shultz, Piterangelo, Weber (although not really a rusher)..they all seem to make forwards look like they are virtually standing still…they don’t always finish but then agian most of the time they would be running into a proper RH dman at the back end…so not only a dman but a right at that. Beating the forwards though they also have their free hand to help fend off a weak postiioned f defender reaching in.

    Sorry…very bored but now curious. Anyone esle have any thoughts on this?

  21. habstrinifan says:

    As you all know, I am a proud Canadian. Although my parents did not have the good sense to do the wild thing when they were up in Timmins… and I had to sneak in with the ‘student visa’ ruse… I feel I have walked the walk in this Maple treed haven.

    I am more resolutely Canadian I am sure than Peter Ignatieff. If HIO rejects me I wont catch the next cyber Concord and go join a Blog in the Dominion… maybe hang out with Sweetmad.

    I understand Canadian. I understand Pauline Marois. I understand Maritime Ronn. I understand HabinBurlington. I understand the poster who mentioned the angst if selectors dont make a Team Canada reflective of our duality.. Madamoiselle Marois would go nutsy. And I understand Adidas’ incredulity that P.K wont be on Team Canada.

    So lets kill les deux problèmes avec une pierre. Let’s make Pernel Karl Subban…. Pèrnèl Kârl Subbân.

    Let’s see Hockey Canada leave Pèrnèl Kârl Subbân off Team Canada.

    • Adidess says:

      Peter Ignatieff? Is that Michael’s son of something :-)

      I understand the sentiments. Do believe in the end Subban will be on the team however. One person could be this dumb or overthink this thing to such an extent, not a full group of what we believe to be smart people.

    • CH Marshall says:

      Madame Marois…… frozen sausages anyone?

    • bwoar says:

      “I understand the poster who mentioned the angst if selectors dont make a Team Canada reflective of our duality..”

      That part – I didn’t understand.

      At least I hope it doesn’t mean “make selections based on having to include a quorum of Qubecois, like those dupes in Montreal who haven’t sniffed a Cup final since Adam first sniffed Eve’s bottom.”

      “thoroughbred”

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      trin

      Oh my
      Pèrnèl Kârl Subbân.

      Absolutely brilliant….. and that was stated with utmost respect, yet PK will make Team Canada on merit, and not on ‘e’ or ‘a’ accents.
      Marc-Edouard Vlasic may be another case altogether….no accents there…

  22. adamkennelly says:

    lets at least be realistic if we are making up trade rumors

    Briere to Buffalo is fine – lets go ahead and get Ott and Moulson in return but that is going to cost us a helluva lot.

    Briere, Prospect (like Beaulieu or Tinordi), pick (2nd round unsigned and 1st if signed) for Ott, Moulson and Tyler Myers…

    that might be doable…

    • krob1000 says:

      too manyboides needing in the lineup….only getting rid of one body and bringing in 3 creates for problems both personnel and cap wise.

    • von says:

      Keep in mind, Moulson is going to be a UFA after this season.

      _________________________________

      “Obviously it would be great, but they don’t really hang conference titles in this rink. They raise Stanley Cup banners.” – Carey Price

    • naweed235 says:

      The only realistic rumor involving Briere is either we get a problem player or a problem contract back in return. Briere might just be the most useless $4M player in the league right now and is not worth anything more than a 5th rounder at best.

      • B says:

        Bickell is averaging less points at $4M, but may prove more useful overall.

        How about Horcoff at $5.5M?
        Clarkson at $5.25M?
        Weiss at $4.9M?
        Clowe at $4.85M?
        Leino at $4.5M?
        Laich at $4.5M?

        All the above are averaging less points per game than Briere so far this season.

        –Go Habs Go!–

    • Mike D says:

      That’s not a good trade for Buffalo. They can get a 1st or more for Moulson alone at the deadline without taking salary or term back. Myers is young enough to still be around when they’re done rebuilding, and while he’s declined since his rookie season, big Dmen like him who can actually do more than fight are valuable so no sense in trading him at all.

      It’s also not a good deal for us. We’re giving up a lot for Myers when we have good prospects almost ready for prime time who have a good chance at being better than he is. Moulson will be expensive to re-sign and he’s useless to us as a rental.

      IF we make a trade with Buffalo involving Briere, it’ll be for Stafford. I could potentially see getting Ott now that they’ve acquired Konopka (though Ott is a much better hockey player), but it would be one of those guys. That’s how I see it anyway. Who knows though.

      – Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

    • Habcouver says:

      If it’s true Dan Briere wants out, get rid of him for a draft pick and a roll of tape. If it happens, we’ll never know how he would perform for us in the playoffs. Note that a half roll of tape would do.

      Waiting patiently for #25

    • boing007 says:

      Sorry. No to Beaulieu and Tinordi going to Buffalo. Let ‘em rot.

      Richard R

  23. HardHabits says:

    I am on the trade Pleks bandwagon. Loonie?

    • krob1000 says:

      I would only do so if an adequate replacement is found…I believe Stastny can be that guy. if that is able to happen…then I am open to it. The other guy who is simialtr to pLeks i would consider is Franz Nielsen….very cheap and basically Pleks lite. Ideal third line center on a good team. You need a versatile guy who can play in a variety of situations to replace PLeks. The fact aht a vialbe IMo replacement is available for only cash likely….and the fact Pleks would likely nett he top 6 winger that owuld allow the team to eventually move Chucky to center…it all adds up. Then again…they may jsut keep Pleks and I would be ok with that too….but it is worht exploring to see what you could get in the offseason.

      • HardHabits says:

        Galchenyuk, Eller, Desharnais is your 1,2,3 punch. Let the kids grow into the roles suited for them.

        And it would have to be for mad returns.

        • krob1000 says:

          I donl;t think that group is ready for primetime yet though …you have two one way warrioris in Chucky and DD…that si why I would get Stastny to bridge the gap…then address the logjam again in a year and half or 2 years. By then Dd is nearly off the books anyway or at least more tradeable, you can see what Eller is, Chucky owuld likely be less of a d liability by then,etc

    • bwoar says:

      It’s time. So long as it’s for a top-6 winger and Gionta and/or Bouque are also on their way out (not necessarily in the same trade.)

      “thoroughbred”

    • boing007 says:

      Plekanec is irreplacable. Long live the Turtleneck!

      Richard R

  24. Bugs says:

    Right, well, I just hung up the phone with Kevin (not good enough to be their coach but good enough to be their GM) Lowe.
    Realized I shoulda put this before you afore puttin it before Kevvy, but…well, I don’t really have an excuse so I’ll just spare you the horse-hockey of why I went over your heads and get down to the real stuff.
    Gallagher-Tinordi-Fucale
    fer Taylor Hall.
    You wanna do this thing? That’s how you get it done.
    Unnh!

    Waitin for the call back.
    Fingers crossed, yo.

    Left turn-missin’ L. B. Potter.

      • 24 Cups says:

        Bugs – yes. Hall is and will be two times better than Gallagher. Tinordi and Fucale are strictly prospects. They’re good but their chances of making the NHL are around the 40% range.

    • christophor says:

      In a heartbeat

    • naweed235 says:

      That’s a great way to give away your 3 best young players for 1 unproven one…

      • christophor says:

        Unproven? Hall is one of the few possession driving wingers in the league. He’s a 5v5 beast.

        The guy is highly touted and still underrated. I love Gallagher but he’ll never make it to that level. Goalies are wildcards, which is why I wouldn’t have used the pick on Fucale. But if he’s highly rated and Edmonton wants a goalie prospect (and they tried to draft Fucale), then use that to your advantage. Tinordi could be something special, but that’s to be shown.

        If you’re talking about who’s unproven, try Tinordi, Fucale, and Gallagher to a lesser extent, not Hall.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      That’s what it takes to make a trade for sure! I’d really have to think about that one. I’d probably do it but might see if I could sub Beaulieu for Pateryn and Dietz. Or maybe a 1st rounder combination…

  25. Stevie.Ray says:

    Reway pronounced Ruh-vie,correct?

  26. krob1000 says:

    Habs are 7th in NHL in regulation wins…

  27. Mike D says:

    Now that Buffalo has picked up Konopka, that gives them John Scott, Steve Ott, Zenon K., Cody McCormick, and Patrick Kaleta (minors) as fighters in their organization.

    WTF are they trying to do exactly? Because clearly it’s not win hockey games. The “arms race” in the east, especially our division, is getting ridiculous.

    Unless their acquiring of ZK somehow leads to us getting Ott from them, I don’t like this move. And unless they’re looking to unload one of their tough guys, it doesn’t even make sense.

    – Honestly yours
    Twitter: @de_benny

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      If you can’t beat them…beat them.

    • CH Marshall says:

      they must be planning a decisive slugfest with Boston

      • Bugs says:

        … awesome.
        I’m watching that game now; that’s all there is to it.

        Left turn-missin’ L. B. Potter.

        • CH Marshall says:

          I’m willing to bet that there is a half-serious plan to do something like that this year since there is no GM set in place, and to even the score after Lucic ran Miller. Buffalo has nothing to lose right now, but Boston does. If Buffalo can damage them in say one or two games left between them, then it will be victory for Buffalo – no matter if Boston comes out blazing in such a war.

          And yeah, that would be a seriously epic game to watch.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Ted Nolan just loved…an NHL maniac named Chris Simon, and played him over the youngsters that the GM wanted to be played when he coached the Islanders.

      Pat Lafontaine has zero experience in an NHL management position – is a great ‘hand shaker’ and incredible PR guy, so the end result is that the inmates are running the Buffalo asylum.

  28. habsfan0 says:

    I know there are a lot of Habs Sabres rumours drifting about,but after last night’s showing by the Canadiens, I wonder if any imminent trade talks have been put off for now.

    • JUST ME says:

      Remains to be seen if there was really trade talks. The g.ms have a country club , they travel in every arena, cross paths everywhere. Does not mean that there are any serious talks other than kicking the tires…

    • Mike D says:

      I would hope that one game wouldn’t deter anyone from trying to improve the team. Especially in this case since Briere was in the pressbox and contributed nothing to the win.

      – Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

  29. Dunboyne Mike says:

    @sackabooboo

    Re. “No weiners required…just the water.”

    WHAT was it that triggered you to break your silence (since Oct 23!) in order to make this contribution?!

  30. HabinBurlington says:

    Damien Cox of the Toronto Star with his picks for Canada, he includes PK and Price, but stranger, he also picks Brad Richards who currently is barely getting 3rd line minutes in New York.

    http://www.thestar.com/sports/sochi2014/hockey/2014/01/03/sochi_2014_damien_coxs_picks_team_canadas_mens_hockey_team.html#

  31. Hobie Hansen says:

    You keep hearing that Boston was fleeced in the Seguin for Eriksson trade. No doubt Dallas won the trade but it’s not as much of a landslide as people are saying.

    Look who’s second on the Bruins in points with 31, Reilly Smith. The other guy involved in the trade who’s 22-years-old. Only Subban has more points in Montreal.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Yup, quietly it appears Chiarelli did a nice job afterall, I was foolish enough to think Eriksson was key to the trade, when in fact Reilly Smith appears to have been the key component.

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        Pretty impressive scouting by the Bruins considering Smith only had 3 goals and 9 points last season. Either the Bruins are lucky or felt Smith was going to quickly develop into something.

      • Mike D says:

        I think they did get a little lucky on Smith. But Eriksson has disappointed so I guess it balances out. Definitely not a bad trade by them and not taking away from their scouting/insight on Smith and Morrow.

        – Honestly yours
        Twitter: @de_benny

    • B says:

      D prospect Joe Morrow (a 1st rounder in 2011) is 3rd in scoring for their AHL team in Providence with 22 points in 32 games.

      –Go Habs Go!–

  32. B says:

    McCarron had 4 points in his 1st game of 2014 on New Years day, 1 goal and 3 assists vs Sarnia. I hope he keeps it going tonight vs Mississauga.

    –Go Habs Go!–

  33. DD says:

    I have a question I’m hoping someone out there might be able to answer.
    Has an encumbant Norris trophy winner, ever been passed over for International play by his Country, for reasons other than injury or suspension?
    It seems to me that the “high risk, high reward”, too many right handed shots, and the “defensive liability” crap, being spouted by the glen healy types out there, is bullshit, plain and simple.It is leaf-centric propoganda.
    As I look at the stats right now, Shea Weber is a -12, and finished at -2 last year, while P.K. is sitting at +13, with 9 more points and finished with a +12 rating last year while winning the Norris Trophy.
    I get the ‘plus/minus’ arguement, that it is really not a great indicator of a players full value, but you would think Yzerman and his crew would be aware of this fact, either way.
    I would also like to point out that I really like Weber, and I’m thankful he is Canadian and that I believe that he deserves to play on Team Canada, but to say Subban is on the bubble, makes no sense at all, to me.

    I also question the “too many right handed shots” excuses. Is it such a stretch that a NHL all star calibre defensemen cannot play on his off side? I don’t think so, in fact, if that was the case, then they wouldn’t be there, would they. Furthermore, PK usually lines up on the left side during PP situations, to take advantage of the best one-timer from the point in the league. Moot point.

    Could you imagine what would have happened if Bobby Orr, Paul Coffey, Denis Potvin, Larry Robinson, Guy Lapointe, Serge Savard or Raymond Bourque were passed over for international consideration, for reasons other than injury or suspension because of the ‘high risk, high reward’ fallacy or we have too many right handed shots excuse or he’s a defensive liaibity excuse?

    If P.K. isn’t included on this team, even as a PP specialist or in case of an injury, and they don’t win gold, Yzerman should be tarred and feathered along with the rest of the moronic pundents out of Tarranna.

    • mark-ID says:

      DD (David Desharnais?)…..excellent post, and I agree fully.
      I do believe PK will be there though, even if it is as their 7th dman power play specialist. If we thought the Bobby Ryan not making the US Olympic team backlack was bad, wait to see what will happen if PK isn’t there.

      “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

      • DD says:

        I agree Mark, but I would add that Brian Blowhard actually caused the uproar, by opening his idiotic mouth. As Ryan said, all he had to do was cut him, not cut him up.

        Steve Yzerman is too classy, and is too much of a gentleman to fall into that trap, but I do believe there will be a furor, if he passes on the Norris Trophy winner’ especially if Canada doesn’t win, and the PP is stagnant or they are not getting timely goals.

        Frankly, I’m sick of all the crap that PK has to endure. Most elite atheletes have an inherent cockiness to them, in fact, it’s usually part of what makes them great. You have to believe your the best, to be the best, in my opinion. PK has been misunderstood and misrepresented from day one.

        BTW I’ve been a HIO contributer from the get go, before Mr Desharnais even joined the team, although I haven’t contributed in quite a while, but I still read the posts. My handle is actually my first and middle initials for my name, not my cup size.

    • krob1000 says:

      Mike Green was a finalist in 2009 and 2010 and did not make the 2010 team

      • Mike D says:

        In Green’s case though, he really can’t play defense at all. Some make the same statements about Subban and they are incorrect, but in Green’s case it’s just a fact.

        – Honestly yours
        Twitter: @de_benny

        • krob1000 says:

          Green was plus 24 and plus 39 those two seasons. I know he is not the greatest defender out there but could it not be argued he was doing far more good than bad given those numbers? I know his team did very well at the time…I just think given the big cie, his skating that he could have had a shot at that team…they won..case closed I guess. I was just giving an example to throw out there as PK is not the only one whose all round game was questioned.

          • Mike D says:

            Green was absolutely a point-getting beast back then. That’s when the Caps were 100% offense and the whole team had a good +/- because they scored so many goals. I wasn’t saying that Green couldn’t have helped or wasn’t good enough to make the team at all, just pointed out that his defensive game was/is severely lacking, where as PK is much better defensively and a better skater too.

            – Honestly yours
            Twitter: @de_benny

          • DD says:

            Thank you, Krob, for pointing out Mike Green’s case, although if I was to nitpick, I would say that he was a finalist, not a winner. By your “all round game” comment, I understand where you’re coming from. It just seems to me, that there is more to this story than just the defensive liabillity fallacy, or the fact that he has actually won the Norris.

            It’s the “too many right hand shots” or the “high risk, high reward” or the “bad attitude” comments that bug me. There seems to be no limit to the amount of untruths told about this kid, or about his personality.

            I had the chance to meet him on a golf course the year he was drafted by the Habs. I found him to be polite, curteous and a perfect gentlemen. He was a class act all the way, even going out of his way to make sure he introduced the other three Bulls who were golfing with him.
            Now I know it was just a ‘one’ chance meeting, but it just seemed to me at that time, that he was raised to be a decent person, and from the conversations I’ve had with Ian, who knows PK personally, I believe my initial thoughts to be true.

            Anyway, I hope Yzerman sees through all the bullshit and PK gets what is rightfully his, a chance to represent Canada and win gold.

      • The Jackal says:

        Yeah but Mike Green is actually bad defensively, PK is just rumoured to be so ;)

        ______________________
        Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  34. The Puckhound says:

    Buffalo picks up Zenon Konopka.

    Go to the net and keep your stick on the ice!

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Buffalo is also comfortably in last place in the NHL and wants to stay there.
      Good pick up for them.
      ” He also has a pet rabbit named Hoppy”

  35. B says:

    Montreal’s 4th round pick last summer (116th overall) finishes the WJC tied for 2nd with 10 points in 5 games.

    http://stats.iihf.com/Hydra/359/IHM359000_85B_8_0.pdf

    –Go Habs Go!–

  36. on2ndthought says:

    Reply to Krob1000, re: trade Pleks:
    You may have got ‘younger’ by trading Pleks, but not better. If in 2 years our best two centers are Eller and Chucky, so be it; play them 1, 2. I’ve always said Pleks is an elite 2, but would be the best # 3 center in the league. Weknesses: faceoffs against the best Cs, not imposing (tho I’ve seen him use speed and momentum to crash into areas) and… well that’s about it. Centering say, Prust and Bournival, we would have a balanced ‘hard to play against’ third line. For now Pleks is way above average as a second line center, and most who are talking about trading him for assets will be surprised at how much other GMs would be willing to part with for a player of Plek’s stature. Someone else (2mins4look) was just defending Diaz for the work he does that isn’t noticed by the TV camera. The same applies to Pleks (and other players posters on websites like this like to call “coaches’ favorites”). His package of skills are coveted around the NHL and not easily replaceable.

    “a cannonading drive”

  37. AliHaba says:

    Poile falling all over himself trying to apologize to Bobby Ryan but my question is….where the hell is Mr. Truculence?

  38. petefleet says:

    Re: Brian Burke on Bobby Ryan

    It just goes to show just how much class Burke actually has. We, the people who could never stand this blow hard, can sit back and smile at the Burke lovers once again. Will this ever not be putting his feet in his mouth? He’s as bad or worse than Bryzgalov. One may think he’d know better but time after time he proves he doesn’t. Bobby Ryan and Keith Yandle should pay him a visit and fill his big yap with some knuckles. Normally I wouldn’t condone violence but in the case of Burke I’ll make an exception. I hope Calgary is thinking twice about their new saviour.

    “Being on the PP doesn’t make you an offensive threat anymore than standing in a garage makes you a car.”
    Henry Ford

    “You can’t believe everything you read on the internet”.
    Abraham Lincoln

    ***Go Habs Go***

    • PrimeTime says:

      You don’t think every GM has expressed similar thoughts about players?? The only discussion should be on the stupidity of allowing these quotes to go public.

      • mksness says:

        wonder what team canada said about DD…

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Reading between the lines listening to Poile on the Radio, sounds like someone from the Team USA Committee forgot to proof read the article that went out. There was evidently an understanding of Editorial control to some degree. Sure sounded like someone didn’t do their job and Poile so much as said so on Sportsnet Radio at lunch today.

        • Mike D says:

          I watched it on Hockeycentral at Noon as well, Gerry. Poile is usually a calm, well-spoken, poised guy, but it was evident he was back-peddling as hard as he could on behalf of Burke and Team USA.

          I’d love to know what conversations (or thoughts) Poile has had with Burke, and I wonder if it will be Burke who will be left of off Team USA going forward. For the life of me I can’t understand how the guy has any hockey credibility in the first place.

          – Honestly yours
          Twitter: @de_benny

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Of course the interview could have been much more effective if it weren’t being conducted by the Three Stooges of Sportsnet, Kypreos, Maclean and Millard. Millard stutters all over himself trying to sound inquisitive, Kypreos just raises his voice and yells, and then Maclean manages to turn the story into his own personal vendetta with Gare Joyce. I only turned them on today because Gareth Wheeler was hosting TSN radio and his voice makes me want to jump off the Skyway bridge.

          • Mike D says:

            LOL! Tell me how you really feel, Burly! Hahahaha.

            – Honestly yours
            Twitter: @de_benny

      • CJ says:

        I am of the same opinion. The real mistake was not holding a veto clause on anything that Scott Burnside wrote. Look, I am not a Burke fan, just calling it the way I see it. In my humble opinion, this is not entirely different then the hot mess that Joe Thorton had in October following comments made inside the dressing room. Fans continue to crave the inside information, yet are appalled at what they hear.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Except did anyone really have an issue with what Thornton said? I don’t think so, whereas here the issue was the boneheaded statement by Burke, and then the audacity that after having said that, to say he would have put him on the team. Very disingenuous.

          And again, from how I heard Poile talk (while being interrupted by Bozo’s 1, 2 and 3 at Sportsnet All Hack Radio) they did have editorial rights and someone dropped the ball on that.

          • CJ says:

            With all due respect, Burke’s comments were not nearly as inappropriate as Thorton’s. Personally, I don’t have an issue with what either said. I think we would all be foolish to think that this does not happen around the league, in any GM roundtable meeting. What do people think Bergevin or Dudley says privately about Bourque?

            As you noted, if they held the editorial rights and allowed this to fall through then that is a greater inditement on that person responsible for this key action then Burke’s callous comments.

            At the end of the day, Burke is a polarizing person and this type of commentary was sure to draw fire. Burnside printed it because he knew it would draw attention. Nothing else within the article was of any real interest. Personally, the move to leave Bishop or Yandle off the team were the bigger mistakes as opposed to Bobby Ryan.

  39. mksness says:

    i don’t want to take away from eller’s goal but it’s not an awesome goal. it’s a top self shot only made possible by their goalie leaving his post and anticipating a pass. still a good shot but i’m not calling that an awesome goal; from my eyes kari guessed wrong

    • krob1000 says:

      yes and no…part of him guessing wrong is Eller’s selling of a possible pass. I haven’t viewed it enough times but I have seen similar goals plenty of times and the shooter no looks it, starts with his stick in passing position and then fires it…that is not on the goalie as much as that is props to the shooter IMO. They have very little room, need a perfect no look shot and to make the goalie bite. Pleks has done it many times over the years…Chucky tries it often too and will likely pull it off over the years as well.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      OOoooooh, mksness!
      Would you not allow that Eller MADE Kari guess wrong?
      Sure looked awesome to me.

      • mksness says:

        if price does the same i would be pissed that price guessed. actually he’s been guessing a bit more lately hence the numbers.

        anyways i’m not saying it’s a bad goal lol. i’m just saying it’s not awesome. the seguin shot..awesome.

    • CJ says:

      The timing of Eller’s goal is what was so awesome. Having just surrendered a two goal lead, that goal helped to stabalize what I would characterize as a fragile team (on the heels of the Carolina loss) and shift the momentum back into Montreal’s favor. It was a great shot, but it was the timing that made it awesome.

  40. jols101 says:

    USA hockey is doing some big damage control re: Burke’s comments on Bobby Ryan. David Poile facing the media and taking it on the chin.

    When any team’s leaders have closed door evaluations on players, negative things are always said about them. We as fans always say it would be great to be a fly on the wall for meetings like those. USA hockey gave that to us and it blew up in their faces. This will result in reporters not getting access to this type of information unfortunately. I would love to see the exact same reporting on the Team Canada process but it will now be 100% edited and watered down. The fans will lose the most from this debacle. We will just get the standard talking points.

    • PrimeTime says:

      That’s the way it should be! Players aren’t public servants. They live private life’s if which the games fans do not gave the right to know the inside details.

  41. kalevine says:

    so how did this explosion in goals come about the last 2 games where their total equaled the previous 8 or 9 games? Were they just playing 2 teams who didn’t get the league wide memo about how to stop the Habs offence? Or are they doing something differently. It can’t just be because PK was allowed to do his thing

  42. frontenac1 says:

    Hola Amigos! Why does Canada tomorrow have to play the only other team that I don’t hate? I hope the Russians and Swedes beat the piss out of each other tomorrow with their usual cheap shots. Go Canada!

  43. durocher says:

    I don’t know why USA Hockey would allow ESPN to follow its selection process and write a candid story about what the brass thought about each player. What could be gained from it? A stupid move that clouds the team going into the Olympics. Ryan has every right to be upset.

    As for Briere, send him and Nygren to BUF for Porter (Max’s homeboy from Michigan, who can play in Hamilton) and McCormick (who can play on the 4th line if need be). OR send him and Nygren to COL for McGinn and Hunwick (buried in the minors, we can eat his salary).

    • JUST ME says:

      Any deal that includes for me to acquire a player to be burried in the minors and or his salary to be eaten in advance does not seem really tempting to me.

  44. Captain aHab says:

    So you’re a Calgary Flames player and you see 2 games against the Senators in March….do you figure to watch your back when Ryan is on the ice? He’s a big boy…..

    —————-
    Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

  45. boing007 says:

    ‘Eller`s amazing goal’ was vintage AK27.

    Richard R

  46. krob1000 says:

    Consider all of this please.
    -Stastny will be UFA this summer.
    -DD is frustrating but with MAxpac it works and for relatively cheap.
    -PLeks has 2 more years left(about perfect for Eller and Chucky to emerge as legit 1 nd 2’s…worst case secario have Stastny as an insurance policy at that point behind Chucky when he moves in two seasons or 3.
    -Pleks has value….and could net a return.
    -Chucky move to center creates a big void on the wing…already have problems at RW…do we want to make one at LW too?

    Here is my solution: it will piss people off and even pains me to say it as I love Pleks game. I stay the course for the season or pick up Stastny but doubt he is available until offseason.
    Then move Pleks in the summer (only if Stastny is obtained). You move forward for at least one sesason with the top 6 winger or top 6 winger prospect PLeks should net plus. Sign Setoguchi to fill Gionta void. Bouillon walks.
    DD…stays…this will frustrate many but given his contract, the fact Stastny could be obtained as UFA and assets got for pleks I think I go this way. LEave Chucky at wing for at least one more year. At that point you look more objectively at where Eller is, where Stastny is, where CHucky is…the situation at wing at that point (can we afford to remoe Chucky who is right now teams 2nd best winger and maybe first by next season).
    If at that point Eller, Stastny Dd are all doing welll you move one then…for now you leave the pressure off Chucky up the middle. You acquire more assets than you give up. Stastny is younger than Pleks. You get a better gauge of what Eller can or will be by then etc.
    DD can continue to produce with MAxpac…he is not ideal but it works…and noone would care if there was more top nine talent around…I think Pleks trade and a UFA pick up would address that concern.
    I do not see another winger ready to step in and be an impact palyer so obtaining one becomes a priority.

    -2 years from now Chucky is a center, Eller is a center and Stasnty is still there as it will likely take 4 years min to get him. By this time Bournival could also emerge…mabe Eller ,etc…but right now and even next year I believe it best to leave Ch cuky on the wing until he can be replaced on the wing…right now..he cannot be replaced.
    -BRiere will be moved for a UFA winger like Setoguchi or Cammi type or Erat or other frustrated winger.

    • Captain aHab says:

      I also think Pleks should be packaged for a young winger…you have to give to get…you won’t get quality for Brière.

      —————-
      Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

    • on2ndthought says:

      You may have got ‘younger’ by trading Pleks, but not better. If in 2 years our best two centers are Eller and Chucky, so be it; play them 1, 2. I’ve always said Pleks is an elite 2, but would be the best # 3 center in the league. Weknesses: faceoffs against the best Cs, not imposing (tho I’ve seen him use speed and momentum to crash into areas) and… well that’s about it. Centering say, Prust and Bournival, we would have a balanced ‘hard to play against’ third line. For now Pleks is way above average as a second line center, and most who are talking about trading him for assets will be surprised at how much other GMs would be willing to part with for a player of Plek’s stature. Someone else (2mins4look) was just defending Diaz for the work he does that isn’t noticed by the TV camera. The same applies to Pleks (and other players posters on websites like this like to call “coaches’ favorites”).

      “a cannonading drive”

      • krob1000 says:

        I am a huge PLeks fan and understand very well what he brings…that is my point. Stastny though is very similar so when I factor in gtting Stastny and possibly acquiring a top 6 winger for Pleks it opens up possibilities. Moving Chucky is great…but who replaces him at wing? By “strengthening” centter you are decimating the wing…he is right now the teams 2nd best winger. What will be the return on Dd? you probalby have to take bad money to get him traded, Satsny can be had for just monet. Pleks traded likely for a top six winger plus ( I think his value is huge).
        I would be fine with them keeping PLeks…but I can see where they would be exploring their options strictly from an asset management persepctive. Maybe they are able to increase Dd value but that still leaves a huge void if you move Chucky to the middle.

  47. 2mins4lookinsooogood says:

    Enough with the whining!

    I come to bury the perpetually unhappy, not to praise them. Every time I read the bellyaching about the quality of the 5th defenceman and how he doesn’t try to knock players off the puck, or separate them from their senses, I feel the bile from the nether regions rise up.

    If you only watch the games on TV (if you actually watch them) you don’t get the big picture. The TV follows the puck – not the players. Diaz kills penalties well, plays his Rafalski lite game and uses positioning and intelligence to get the job done.

    I get that there are a large group here who think that the Coach, the Asst. Coach, the GM, the Asst GM, the Director of Player personnel and down the line are …. IDIOTS!

    After-all, you watching a fuzzy game feed on the internet and trading on NHL13 have a much better handle on talent and could do so much better than professionals.

    Barf.

    Yak all you want in your echo chamber but try to accept that Diaz is not the reason why Doug Murray is minus 21! (ah but tis better to hit than to win) Tyler Seguin was minus 3 last night and that there will be some ugly losses and wins in the next 40.

    “Don’t crush that dwarf Alex Henry, hand me the pliers”

  48. HABSGUARDIANANGEL says:

    how about ales hemsky for rennee bourque

    or briere and draft pick for moulson and scott?

  49. Sportfan says:

    Poile shows more class than Burke will ever know.

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

  50. Plekasuares says:

    Latest Rumour (could be bs): briere, diaz and a 2nd for Ott,Moulson
    Seems great!

  51. Vladdy Mondavi says:

    I think to ship Brière to BUF we’d have to include a prospect or a draft pick; in return we’d probably
    receive a pending UFA.

  52. naweed235 says:

    Kanopka claimed by Sabres

  53. JUST ME says:

    I sometimes wonder…i often wonder what game people saw the night before. Although we went through a few snorefest and other frustrating demonstrations , yesterday`s game was one in a blue moon game worth every cent…nickel paid for the ticket.

    P.K.`s Norris trophy worth demonstration
    Max Pac too fast,too strong …
    D.D. slicing through the Stars ..
    Eller`s amazing goal.
    Tyler Seguin`s lightning fast goal.
    A penalty shot.
    Gorges playing a huge game.
    We even had an Eric Cole`s typical great rush to the goal in the first minutes!

    Instead some would rather talk about lack of D on both sides and average at best goaltending. Did not read every comment but i bet some found a way to complain about Briere and Emelin being benched ! Well maybe not Briere…

    Here`s to many games like last night`s !

  54. B says:

    Montreal played 14 games in December taking 17 of 28 possible points (.607%). They played 4 teams now ahead of them in the standings taking 4 of 8 points from them (this doesn’t count the win over Phoenix who were ahead at the time but are behind now). They played 10 teams now behind them in the standings taking 13 of 20 possible points (.650%).

    On the season so far, Montreal currently ranks 11th with a .619 points%.

    –Go Habs Go!–

  55. montreal ace says:

    MB seems to attend a lot of games when the team travels, I don’t remember another GM doing that quite as often as him. I think he is very pro active with the teams lineup, and gets along quite well with MT. I can see why some people might argue with our deployment of personal, as nobody sees players the same way. The thing I don’t understand, is how people can argue with the results the team has shown so far. Our record speaks for itself, so some good things must be happening for us to accomplish that fact.

    • FlyAngler says:

      Very simple. Too many losses to the weaker teams in the league- Florida (twice), Carolina, Edmonton etc. If you can beat teams like Boston, Pittsburgh, Anaheim, Dallas and Tampa, there is no excuse for regular subpar performances against the bottom feeding teams in the league. You can run into a hot goaltender or have an off night, but too many of the Habs losses to weaker teams have stemmed from poor effort and a seeming ill preparedness.

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

    • Timo says:

      Or perhaps he just likes to travel.

    • ont fan says:

      People want a legit contender. It’s like saying you have achieved your goal. Middle management.fans want a real shot at the cup, now. At this point it’s a mystery on how we are going to get there drafting 25 the Just an opinion.

  56. aHabGrowsInBrooklyn says:

    Is it just me, or does David Poile look like Mr Incredible’s boss, Mr Huph?

  57. Dr.Bob says:

    The doctor is in. Is it me or have the last 4 or 5 games been absolutely brutal to watch? After what transpired in Carolina it looked as if last nite would be a repeat. We took 7 of 12 pts on this road trip but easily could have 10 if we could have beat Florida and Carolina, two dreadful teams going nowhere.

    I see alot things that I don’t like right now. Such as………

    No forecheck
    The D giving up the blueline too easily
    Confusion in D zone leading to players overstaying their shifts.
    Little if any offensive creativity.
    Doling out of ice time does not make any sense.
    Why do players (veterans) who contribute nothing continue to get ice time while our young guys sit and watch

    This looks like a repeat of late last season. The good thing is that they have time to turn this around and right the ship. That will be MT’s job in the second half. If he is not able to do it he will become a lame duck coach going into the last season of his contract next year.

    Let’s hope he can pull it off.

    • Mike Boone says:

      Good points.

      Mike Boone
      Hockey Inside/Out blogger

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      Two point of yours are bang on:

      1) The D giving up the blueline too easily.
      2) Confusion in D zone leading to players overstaying their shifts.

      Those problems boil down to a few players. You’ve got Diaz and Bouillon with very limited size to separate people from the puck and reach to swat the puck away.

      You then have Murray, Diaz and Bouillon who can have problems getting the puck on their stick and getting it the heck out of the end. There’s been so many times this year when you see those three gassed out there chasing the puck around their own end.

      The other defensemen are guilty as well on occasion but those three are definitely the biggest offenders.

      • twilighthours says:

        Hobie, I know you love #74 but no honest take of the Habs’ blue line would omit a critique of him. He’s been our worst D for a couple weeks now

    • Forum Dog says:

      Your point on the ice time is most glaring (I think) when it comes to the PP. Desharnais and Pacioretty I get. But why Gionta, Plekanec and Bourque (yeah, I think I actually saw this last night) instead of Galchenyuk and Eller? In my mind, no PP should go by without Galchenyuk seeing some time on it. Doesn’t have to be the first unit, but this guy is so gifted offensively that there is no way someone like Gionta or Bourque should be getting that time.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Dear Doctor.

      No argument with any but the first point, and at that I wouldn’t actually argue, just ask what you make of the point made here a few days ago that Montreal hasn’t the size and strength to pull off an aggressive forecheck over a whole season (Pens were suggested as a point of comparison, their aggressive strategy wearing them out prior to the playoffs).

    • TMan1969 says:

      Great points, but when the team wasn’t scoring and more defensive the complaints were reversed. The good thing for meis that they are starting to score more then 2 goals…they are attacking and they are redeveloping an identity so there will be games like this…I prefer this then 6-0

      They are sitting in a good position, I know they’re not LA Kings but they have some drive…they have a chance.

      Could they be better sure…but I think it will get better especially after a few trades.

      Do not scorn a weak cub. He may become the brutal tiger.

      Mongolian Proverb

  58. matt jordan says:

    Gionta has one goal in his last 28 games.

  59. Hobie Hansen says:

    It might take 3 1/2 years but I think Brian Burke will get his punishment for the idiotic Bobby Ryan comments by being left of the next USA Olympic committee.

    Burke has made some good moves over his career and I did feel bad for him when his son passed away. Unfortunately his complete cockiness and desire to say stupid things in order to be in the spotlight just kills his reputation.

    His whole thing about Kevin Lowe and the offer sheet years ago is another example. Burke made his point but kept bringing it up over and over again.

    One day he’s going to piss off the wrong person, either a former player in an executive role or maybe even a current player and get the s*^t kicked of him. I’d love to see that in the news!

    • D Mex says:

      Yes X 4.
      His hiring in Calgary speaks to the desperation of that organization IMO, altho Burke is that rarest of birds – right all the time … ask Tony Gallagher.

      ALWAYS Habs –
      D Mex

    • 24 Cups says:

      HH – I remember the Bobby Ryan draft year quite well. Brian Burke stated at the time that his staff had never experienced a better interview than the one they had with Ryan. He totally blew them out of the room. Burke stated that they got the best player in the draft after Crosby. Now Ryan is a chump and Jack Johnson is the chosen one. The same young defenseman who can’t break through to stardom and was also left off the team over Faulk and Fowler.

      The real question for me is why the Olympic management team allowed reporters to be part of the entire process.

    • bwoar says:

      Kevin Lowe is a huge, huge idiot.

      “thoroughbred”

    • twilighthours says:

      His comments were fine, and should have stayed behind closed doors. Why the brass let burnside in the room is beyond me.

      Great reporting by him, though.

  60. Ian Cobb says:

    Well! I just wonder which film Therrien and the coaches were watching, when they came to the conclusion that we were not a grinding team anymore that could not score goals!.

    But instead that we were a very talented, fast and creative group of players that could over power with speed, finesse and creativity!
    Yes we are a smaller team, but when they are not restricted by a system that has not worked over the past month or so, but allowed to show their creativity and full court pressure, they are a very good and fun team to watch.
    Sure hope Therrien sticks to this type of entertainment for us.!!

    Looking forward to Saturday night game against Ottawa, to see if the creativity game continues!!

  61. Lagerhab says:

    So listening to the broadcast last night our depth of the centre position was brought up again. Going forward this is a concern. DD is playing well and we know how Max feels, Eller is looking great, especially with the physical side of his game, Pleks is Pleks, we need him and Chucky has to start playing the centre position, I mean look at Seguin last night, I can see a similar path for Chucky. I don’t believe any of these guys should be playing on the fourth line. Two questions:
    1. What does MB do.
    2. What should he do?

    • 24 Cups says:

      For me, it’s quite simple – trade DD this summer. He’s playing well enough that some team will want him. As for how Max feels, I could care less. He’ll soon forget DD once he starts playing with Galchenyuk and they both are in the top 25 scorers around the league.

      I don’t expect any major trades this March. The Habs will keep their veterans in hope of winning a playoff series. Once June arrives, DD, Gionta, Briere and Bouillon will move on. That will solve the size issue once and for all and open up some space for Bournival, Leblanc and one of the young Dmen in Hamilton. There also should be some free agent coin left over to bring in another UFA like Clarke MacArthur:)

      • Lagerhab says:

        That would be my preference as well. I hope you are right! Going forward with Pleks, Eller and Chucky would be the right path I believe. I just have my doubts especially with the contract MB gave DD. Time will tell.

      • bwoar says:

        I don’t trust Pacioretty that much. In fact I expect he will rip his GM if DD is traded this summer.

        “thoroughbred”

      • habstrinifan says:

        Hold on there a minute! Max Pac (lighting it up yes) is not the type of player who ‘goes and gets the puck’ ‘or a playmaker type’. Evidence in almost all his recent goals show that Max Pacs is a skating shooter… a shootist. Would Galchenyuk be as ‘unselfish’ and be looking for Max Pac as DD. Let’s be careful now.

        My best solution would be to get a wicked winger for Max/DD;size and defensive grit and good experience would be top considerations and then work your other lines to improve the linemates for Plekanec(Bournival and??) and leave Eller Galchenyuk and Gallagher as a line.

        In my scenario, Bourque, Gionta, and sadly now Prust are kinda floaters.

        Bottom line is that you dont want a scenario where you have a ‘sniper'(Pacs) with no spotter(DD).

        • Steeltown Hab says:

          Pacioretty and Gallagher aren’t good enough wingers for Desharnais lol…

          ———————————

          Lars, PK, Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Emelin, Bournival, De La Rose – @J_Perez22

  62. sweetmad says:

    Happy New Year to everybody,lets hope some of it rubs off on the worlds starving and oppressed,we must remember how lucky we are that we are not among them.

    I love Pk,and now he holds al the cards he can be himself again,you want PK to play in Montreal,you have to let PK be the person he is,emotional, enthusiastic, in your face lovable.I have noticed in the last few games he has been more excitable,and I love it, forget all your boring traditional, thats not hockey quotes,His smile is worth all the boo’s from other fans(although I didn’t hear to much of that last night).They have taken the leash off PK and he is reveling in it,they had to,they want him to sign a contract.This is the PK we signed in the first place,and we all want more of this PK,who is fun to watch and makes things happen,I for one will forgive the odd mistake for the pleasure of calling him a HAB.
    GO HABS GO

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Based on reading that, I go back to my earlier point wherein I wondered if perhaps the Mgmt. team indeed didn’t think quotes like that would get out of the room.

      I feel no empathy to that big tub of goo currently presiding in Calgary, but I am surprised that Mgmt. team didn’t have the foresight to realize stuff like this would get out, and no surprise it was the lead Bozo leading the charge with ridiculous comments.

  63. JF says:

    After the meltdown in Carolina I vowed I wouldn’t watch the team again until they started playing better. So I did not watch a single second of last night’s game, but caught Canadiens Express this morning when I saw they’d won. Wow! I certainly missed a great game. Great in terms of excitement, intensity, and spectacular plays.

    Have the Habs woken up and come out of what was beginning to look like a state of paralysis? They were skating, moving the puck, hitting, and, above all, scoring goals. They were spectacularly good for stretches – and, alas, spectacularly bad for others. But they held onto their third lead for the win.

    Price definitely needs a kind of tune-up before the next game. He was swimming around all over the place, out of position four or five times, making saves in spite of himself. A few years ago after one of these Christmas road trips, he said there isn’t much time for concentrated goaltending practice during a long road trip, so the goaltender needs a kind of re-set when he gets back. Let’s hope he has time for it before tomorrow night.

    Highlights for me were the play of Subban and Pacioretty, of course, but also that of David Desharnais. I’m beginning to think that he is in the process of quietly proving his GM right. Despite his lack of size, despite his horrendous start to the season, there are many nights on which he’s our best centre. Last night was one of them. He had several scoring chances and created several more.

    As for P.K., he is simply sublime to watch in full flight and playing at the top of his game, as was the case last night. We’ll see if he has opened the eyes of Yzerman and the rest of the old boys’ club.

    I also loved Eller’s goal. Great power and puck control skating the length of the rink, tiny hesitation to get Lehtonen moving, perfect shot.

    Despite giving up four goals, the game was a nice start, and a fairly improbable one in the circumstances, to 2014.

  64. Coach K says:

    I have to wonder what kind of effort (bribe) it would take for MB to pry young Mr. Mantha from the Red Wings organization. He’d be a hero in Montreal in no time if he continues to perform the way is is for Team Canada’s Jr. squad.

    One can dream no?

    —When Hell freezes over, I’ll play hockey there too—

  65. Ian Cobb says:

    Before I post about that very fun game last night, I would like to make an announcement for people like myself, who did not hear of the death of one of our old time Hab player.
    T. Connell Broden. Who died in church just a couple of weeks ago.
    “Connie” was a great Hab’s player of the 50s, he remained in the game his whole life. I remember many a memorable evening with him scouting the OHL. He worked for many hockey organizations over his long hockey career, including the Winnipeg Jets and his last team, the Phoenix Coyotes.

  66. Lafleurguy says:

    Belated answer to Cobby’s question, “What happened to global warming?”
    It was filibustered in the Congressional House of Representatives.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  67. jimmy shaker says:

    Just looked on nhl.com about the upcoming olympic mens rosters and most teams look pretty dangerous except for finland. It should be a great tourney. Also, I made my picks for team canada last week and compared them to the nhl.com sites picks and I was perfect match for the tenders and the d-men, my only 2 picks that were different were, me having thornton and kunitz on the team, while nhl.com had couture and eric staal.

    here is the team that will be announced on tuesday…..stamp it!

    price, luongo, smith

    doughty, weber, keith, pietrangelo, bouwmeester, seabrook, subban, vlasic

    stamkos, crosby, kunitz
    perry, bergeron, getzlaf
    sharp, toews, tavares
    nash, thornton, st.louis

    giroux, duchesne

    Cheers,

    Shaker out!

    Oh and MB go ahead and pick up campbell from florida please!

  68. jeffhabfan says:

    Not pretty but I will take it. GO HABS GO.

    • Mike D says:

      Ugly as sin actually, but I’ll take it too.

      I’m somewhat amazed at the quality of Dallas’ forward group, especially considering they traded away James Neal for Alex freakin Goligoski. They D-core could be better for sure, but man, they’ve got some great young talent up front.

      – Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

  69. Adidess says:

    I have been thinking, in the wake of last night’s game, about the Olympic selection and the hoopla that will ensue if PK isn’t part of it. It sure seems a bit lazy to conclude that any reservations over picking Subban for Team Canada must have to do with the colour of his skin in a proud, enlightened, ‘equality of opportunity’ society like ours. I’m saying this in all sincerity. This is 2014. I am not blind to the amount of prejudice that still exists in the world due to ignorance, personal resentment, and/or lack of understanding of history, but I really don’t think racism today plays out in such an overt, public, collective, institutionalized manner anymore, especially in a modern culture like we have here. Team Canada management knows everyone is watching and they are aware of the public condemnations and the negative vibes that would surround a decision based on racial bias regarding the Olympic roster, which could in turn undermine team unity, if not national unity. I believe Team Canada would challenge itself, or someone in the room would challenge the group, not to stoop so low. So yes, I am firmly against the premise that racism is the reason for the unease with picking PK.

    At the same time, I’m trying to think…, and that’s where I get stomped and certainly confused. If PK was Dion Phaneuf, and an exuberant Phaneuf had won the Norris last year and was in the midst of putting together a potentially better season this year, with 33 points and +13 in 42 games, which is second only to Duncan Keith among Canadian defencemen, had experience on the big ice and played successfully for Canada’s selection before, would there be any question about Phaneuf being on the team. Conversely, if PK was Jay Bouwmeester, would an overrated, long-thought-to-be-over-the-hill PK, getting rejuvenated because well-insulated in a new, stacked defensive system in St Louis, be a lock to make the team. Try these scenarios in your head and see what you come up with.

    PK makes mistakes, do we watch anybody else play defence? PK dominates 5-on-5 and he’s lethal on the PP. His point totals and +/- speak for themselves. These numbers mean he’s a big net positive for his team on defence while playing with suspect defensive partners half of the time.

    People seem to think that a spectacular screw-up that happens once in a while while a player of his skill is trying to create on offence is way worse than regular minor screws up where a D man gets out-muscled or out-thought on goals against. I disagree. Give me a strong two-way D man that will help win me games every day. Aside from Weber and Keith, I don’t see anybody who’s better than Subban on defence and he’s certainly as good as any on offence.

    There is something about PK that gives many people pause. I can’t put my finger on it though I think it’s too easy to assume it is straight up prejudice. If you say ‘too polarizing’, you’ll make me laugh.

    • Timo says:

      I think that “something” that gives people a pause is… the color of his skin. If he is a white good ol’ boy from a Smith farm he is going in as a number 1 defenseman.

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Dear Timo

        I must admit that you have given me many chuckles since I began to read HIO, and I know many of your posts possess wonderful tongue-in-cheek humor, yet the above post is very far from the truth and unwarranted.

        If you park last night’s ‘Bobby Orresque’ performance, there were viable reasons and excuses of actual hockey play to keep Subban off of Team Canada that have been stated or alluded to by Team Canada personnel.

        There is also NHL team politics and lobbying – be that Coach Hitchcock that has Pietrangelo and Bouwmeester playing for him, or Coach Julien that may (would) do anything to get under the Habs skin.

        You are better than that.

        • Timo says:

          Ronn, while I don’t watch any other defenseman that is currently touted to be in top 6 for the team, I think they same thing can be said about them. It’s not like Bouwmeester, Pieterangelo, and even Keith don’t have nights/stretches where their play is sub par. Keith, for example, was far from brilliant last years playoffs (Seabrooke was by far Hawks’ best dman).

          I am not saying there is an overt racism, but I am not discarding that somehow sub-consciously PK is treated differently because he is of a different color. Why is that so improbable?

          • Maritime Ronn says:

            hi Timo

            Subban is not competing against Keith or Bouwmeester (left side Dmen), he is on the Right Side competing against Doughty-Weber-Pietrangelo-Seabrook.

            At the end of the day, please know…I always look forward to reading your posts.
            :-)

          • Timo says:

            You mean, Team Canada coaches will try to have their players play their natural position? Does this still exist?

          • boing007 says:

            Bouwmeester and Pietrangelo put together do not add up to the talent level of P.K. Subban. Get one for the price of two. I call that a bargain, the best …

            Richard R

    • Adam says:

      I think it has to do with race, but it’s not overt racism. It’s not like the brain trust sits down and says “Well, he’s black, so we can’t have him on the team.”
      I think the way PK is perceived in general is tinged by the colour of his skin, though. If he acted the exact same way and was white, he would definitely be perceived differently. His goal celebrations wouldn’t be thought of as slightly negative “flamboyance,” it would be “exuberance.” His talking a lot would be enthusiasm, not disrespect for the game.
      The way PK is perceived is different, and I think that’s on a subconscious level. We still have a long way to go when it comes to race in this country, but unlike the 1950s, the racism is much more subtle, and it’s not necessarily on a conscious level.

      • Adidess says:

        Ok, that does make sense to me. It might be primarily cultural, but there is probably some of that subcounscious bias you describe at play. Otherwise, it’s really hard to see why so many well-meaning people would feel the way they do about him.

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        I’m naive. I’m also out of Montreal for decades. Which is why what you say shocks — actually sickens — me. I hope you’re wrong but have no way of knowing. I try to “put on” the unconscious perceptions you describe and they just won’t compute.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Very interesting post!
      Good read.

      PK is an absolute gem.
      This guy has both ‘on-ice’ AND ‘off-ice’ personality and uniqueness rarely seen in an elite NHL athlete.

      Sid Crosby is the best player in the world, yet is there a more boring ‘cliche-ridden’ interview than him? Or Stamkos? Or Toews? Or so many others?

      There is a chance that some jealousy is involved with other players.

      Perhaps a few years ago, PK’s on ice yapping and demeanor was a little over the top for some old style vets, yet he appears to have overcome a lot of that…yet it still may linger around the league.

      As for deemed racism, there is a true belief from here that that word is not even part of the mind set of Team Canada officials.
      It’s all…and ONLY about winning.

      What perhaps may be closely watched is the ‘regional distribution’ of players chosen to Team Canada based on our country’s population centers.
      The usual suspects will have their magnifying glasses out…

      • Adidess says:

        Thanks. You made a very good point regarding ‘distribution’ (I know what you mean). There is zero doubt in my mind that PK has earned his spot in the top 6, though Yzerman hasn’t called me for advice so far. But from a PR standpoint, it would be shocking if PK doesn’t make it, being so deserving in the first place.

    • habstrinifan says:

      Too Polarizing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  70. CJ says:

    I believe that one of the reasons we haven’t seen a trade is the organization’s reluctence to part with a young asset, be it a prospect or a coveted draft pick. I firmly believe that the organization ‘sgreatest strength is drafting, so parting with a pick should only be a last resort. I have no inside knowledge, however it appears likely that they are shopping. Go HABS!

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      Bergevin has made a couple of bad or questionable signings. The one thing he hasn’t done is throw away young players or draft picks for a band aid solution. For that reason he gets a “B” rating so far IMO.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Agreed

      Probably the only calls GM Bergevin receives are for the core group: Price-Subban-the 2 Gallys-Max-Eller.

      While it may change in 30-45 days, there are still too many teams in the playoff hunt for a real hockey trade to happen.

      GMMB and Dudley were present in Chicago when the builing was going on and lived the patience needed to get competitive for the Cup.

      Contrary to some popular belief, the Hawks have only 2 Top 10 drafted players – Kane-Toews. The rest were later/much later picks or astute trades ( Sharp-Oduya) of UFA signings like Hossa.

      • Kooch7800 says:

        in saying that Kane and Toews are pretty awesome player and are a huge part of that teams core

        “Keep your stick on the Ice”

        • Maritime Ronn says:

          Toews was a # 3 overall pick – played 1 more year with U of ND, and then was given every opportunity to succeed with 18:40 of playing time in his rookie year with the Hawks.

          Galchenyuk was a # 3 overall pick and…

  71. Timo says:

    So, which of the dmen sits tomorrow when Emelin is back? My bet is on Murray but man, would I ever like to see Diaz take a sit. He is brutal.

    No more Briere to Buffalo rumours today? Pity.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Regrettably, I’d rather see Cube on the pine.

      Timo, what Mattyleg said about Irish summer weather is all too true. As long as your hopes for a visit to Ireland are weather-proof, however, you can have a fantastic visit. Heat and sunshine are a bonus when they happen (and they do).

      AC, Aer Lingus and West Jet are all launching year-round Toronto-Dublin routes starting in the spring.

      • Timo says:

        I was hoping to get in a couple of golf games. I was getting some subtle golf tips from Punkster and I think it could take my game to the next level.

        I am not too fussy about the weather in summer… Calgary usually has plenty of sunshine to offer so I won’t be starved for vitamin D. Just want to see the country a bit and have some good beer.

        We’ll probably start working on that trip sometime in spring though. Thanks for the info, amigo.

  72. CF says:

    I just wanted to say I like what Murray brings to the back end. He wins puck battles and clears the front of the net. I really donèt care that he’s not a “great” skater. He’s doing what he was brought in to do. He’s big, strong, I really like the guy.

    • Timo says:

      Amen. However, he doesn’t bring the offensive threat that Diaz does. Have you seen all that offense Diaz generates? No? Me neither.

      • Coach K says:

        That observation is not unique to your perspective Timo. As Boone says, “Diaz NEVER takes the puck away from anyone”. Isn’t that that primary role of all defenceman in this league? Just sayin…

        —When Hell freezes over, I’ll play hockey there too—

  73. Hobie Hansen says:

    The penalty shot on Price was in. It hits the right post 1st and bounces inside the left post and hits the netting.


Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.