About last night …

GallyDet

If the coach was satisfied with his team’s effort in its latest loss, who are we to criticize?
“A coach asks his team to work hard and compete,” Michel Therrien said. “We did tonight. The result just wasn’t there.”
OK then.
One part of Therrien’s analysis is indisputable:
As was the case in Toronto on Saturday and Pittsburgh on Wednesday, the result was a loss for your Montreal Canadiens.

As for the team’s work ethic and compete level … well, maybe Therrien’s behind-the-bench (for now) perspective offered a different view than what was telecast into my basement.

Perhaps the Ol’Blogger is becoming jaded and bitter. It’s been a morale-sapping winter in Montreal, and the cold weather has coincided with a cooling-off period in which the Canadiens have managed 18 points in their last 20 games.

That’s a smidge below .500 hockey. And unless the situation improves, I’m afraid this team is going to slip below a wild-card playoff spot by the time the NHL takes a two-week Olympic break.

The Canadiens will play eight games before Sochi.

Six are on home ice.

The Bell Centre run begins with a visit by Washington on Saturday night. The Capitals have lost five straight, the latest Friday night in New Jersey.

Washington is sinking like a stone in the Eastern Conference standings. Alexander Ovechkin is injured, and Mikhail Grabovski had to leave the game against the Devils after nine shifts and six minutes of ice time.

Based on recent form, then, the Caps would appear to be ripe for the plucking, an ideal opponent to open the Canadiens pre-Olympic feast of home cooking.

The Canadiens, however, can’t be relied upon to pluck anyone – with the possible exception of the customary 21, 273 who will fill the Bell Centre Saturday night. That crowd could get ugly if they start to think they’re being plucked.

Which could happen the way this team is trending.

Gaston Therrien, who breaks down replays on L’Antichambre’s in-studio big screen, highlighted the Niklas Kronwall goal that gave Detroit a 3-1 lead. The RDS Xs-and-Os guy said it was “hallucinant, le nombre des erreurs” that led to the goal.

You don’t need a translation. Later in the show, Therrien used “hallucinant” again to describe the number of great scoring chances opponents are getting because of the Canadiens’ errors and coverage breakdowns in their own end.

Carey Price has given up four goals or more in his last five starts. But with few exceptions – Price might want another stab at that Riley Sheahan laser to his glove side – the goaltender has been brilliant.

Anything less and Price would be giving up six to eight goals per game. That’s how good opponents’ chances have been.

And that’s how awful the Canadiens have been playing in their own end.

And it’s not because they’re burning all their energy on offence. In contrast to the shooting gallery Price faces every night, the Canadiens – their shot totals notwithstanding – have a popgun attack  that features low-percentage perimeter shots an average NHL goaltender could stop in his sleep.

That’s assuming the Canadiens can gain the zone and generate something resembling sustained offence. But unlike their opponents, who cruise through the neutral zone and cross the blueline unimpeded, the Canadiens’ attack is either P.K. Subban shakin’ and bakin’ or dump/chase/occasionally retrieve.

Tomas Plekanec, Brian Gionta and Lars Eller had 15 of the 31 shots on Jonas Gustavsson. Can anyone remember a game in which the Canadiens had contributions from more than one forward line?

Detroit opened the scoring, during a 5-on-3 power play, when Dan Cleary parked in Price’s crease and obscured the goaltender’s view of a Henrik Zetterberg shot. The Wings have benefited from a succession of fearless forwards who will attack the blue paint: Tomas Holmstrom, Johan Franzen, Todd Bertuzzi.

The only Canadien with the stones to face crosschecks from the defence, slashes from the goaltender and slappers whizzing in from the point is Brendan Gallagher – all 5’9″ of him.

And so the power play – one of the Canadiens’ strengths when the season began – has scored three goals in its last 28 opportunities over nine games.

Maybe Nathan Beaulieu can help the PP. For the third straight game since his call-up, Beaulieu looked like an NHLer.

His teammates?

Not so much.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

363 Comments

  1. Mavid says:

    About last night is so much better than during the game..we get modded for saying certain words..but some of the stuff that goes on here is as discouraging as the game itself..

    Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

  2. Eddie says:

    I love irony, part 2′, this one is for Marc Bergevin.

    Bergevin played like 100 years in the NHL, as what? A stay at home defenceman, who relied on positioning, on defensive zone coverage, to make his living. He is an EXPERT, literally, at understanding playing defence at the NHL level.

    Our team has no clue how to cover in our defensive zone. The guys are lost.

    Irony.

  3. Sportfan says:

    Reading the article about Diaz, I really hope MT can trade him and not just have him walk. He’s a puck mover people want that, he isn’t terrible at defense either, here’s hoping he does something even if its for a pick.

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

  4. Eddie says:

    I love irony, so here’s one for Therrien.

    Defence. Defence. Defence. He declares. We must tighten up our defensive zone coverage.

    Gaston Therrien, quoted by Boone above, comes on RDS and what does he say?

    The ONE thing a coach can definitely teach, the ONE place where a coach can really make a difference, is teaching defensive zone coverage; that’s the stamp he puts on his team first and foremost!

    Hahahahahahaha!!

    Irony.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      With this defence, no matter what you teach them they just won’t cut it! No possible way.

      Emelin hasn’t recovered and is shaky. Markov is slow and very beatable in the Habs end. Diaz is tiny and unreliable. Gorges has one game followed by two bad ones. Murray is slow as a snail. Bouillon is tiny and finished….

      The Habs are beyond BRUTAL in their own end!

      • Eddie says:

        Defensive zone coverage is a 5 man job. It’s not only on the dmen, which I know you know.

        It’s about positioning. It’s about vision. It’s about reacting and adjusting. It’s about anticipating.

        There is nothing wrong with a top 4 of Subban, Markov, Gorges, Emelin.

        Diaz can play as a number 5 or 6 on my team, limited minutes, but he’s not terrible.

        I don’t know how to explain to people how bad Murray is so I just give up trying. And Bouillon has lost it, I agree.

        But I don’t agree with you tat or defensive players are terrible.

        All of a sudden Markov, Gorges and Emelin are ALL terrible at the same time?

        I don’t agree.

  5. boing007 says:

    Eller is wasting away on the wing. Takes him too long to get to the net and is a waste of his natural instincts and youthful energy. Slot him back to the center position with Bournival and Gallagher, Beaulieu and … ? A very speedy line.

    Richard R

    • CJ says:

      Beaulieu and PK. There we go! When Chucky comes back, let’s reunite the kids. I agree, Eller needs to at centre.

    • Habfan17 says:

      That makes too much sense so Therrien will not do it!

      Habfan17

    • Mark C says:

      I just wish he would play better. 9 games without a point, 3 points in his last 22 games, I think. Understand that he might not being used most optimally. But 3 points in over a quarter of the season? Not acceptable from a player like Eller. Play better regardless of what position and lines mates you have.

      This doesn’t just go for Eller, everyone in the lineup can play better.

  6. John Q Public says:

    Do the honorable thing MT, Seppuku.
    I’ll be your second.
    Then Homer can be coach.

  7. wjc says:

    Canadiens might not make the playoffs……yawn…..stretch…..Oh well.

    Nice weather will come, green grass, sunshine, new interest….life is good.

    wjc

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      Yup, kinda getting used to it over the last 20 years. I’m a casual Blue Jays fan and I always hope there’s something to look forward to there, after the Habs traditional elimination. Unfortunately the Jays are pretty much like the Habs the past 20 years.

      Aside from team Canada in the Olympics, it’s pretty lame not seeing any sort of success from my favourite hockey and baseball teams.

  8. Cal says:

    I leave it to The Boss to describe the Habs recent play.

  9. christophor says:

    On a lighter note:

    I upset my Leaf-fan brother-in-law by buying his three year old boy (my nephew, of course) Habs pyjamas for his birthday.

    Thing is, my nephew soiled his regular pajamas last night and so has been running ’round this morning decked out in Habs gear.

    Perfect ending.

  10. munch17 says:

    Last year = about 40 games into a shortened season – the Habs started to fade. This year – pretty much the same – unfortunately we may be fading a lot longer.
    If it weren’t for Price – I don’t know what the scores would be.
    Last night Price made a few spectacular saves and really couldn’t be faulted on the goals. Detroit’s goalie had a lot of perimeter shots , no traffic , and gave up a goal that if CP gave up would be considered weak.TSN was questioning whether CP should be starting goalie – I would love to see him start and , for once , play behind a solid defence.

  11. hansolo says:

    @Dunboyne Mike:

    Great post about expectations. But unwittingly or not, you’ve highlighted the issue many of us are frustrated with. Have we sunk so low that we should learn to become as patient as Florida Panthers’ fans? How did the Montreal F Canadiens ever get to so low a point?

    I know that in the glory years the league was smaller, the system was different, and so on. But one never had the sense that the organization thought mediocrity was acceptable. The Oakland Raiders may have had the slogan about a commitment to excellence but the Montreal Canadiens lived it and breathed it.

    I don’t sense the organization lives and breathes it today. The Blackhawks, the Wings, the Blues, the San Jose Sharks and, heck, even the Boston Bruins (and I hate them) have a greater commitment to excellence than this edition of the Canadiens. The GM and assistant GM mumble on about character, and sign free agent players who are mediocre, neither leaders nor excellent players. What message does that give the rest of the team? We used a first round pick on Mike McCarron, a project if there ever was one. The coach fights in the media with opposing coaches, calls out his star players publicly, and makes inane comments about his captain crying.

    I could accept the team losing if I felt there was a good chance the corner the team should turn around was visible. I know Eyes on the Prize evokes emotions on this site but at least they presciently (while the team was in its long undefeated streak) pointed out the disparity in possession the team had versus its opponents and boldly predicted the streak was unsustainable. The reckoning has come. I don’t sense our GM and coach even think about such stats (Dudley is said to be the anti-Moneyball). Well Doug Wilson, Joel Quenneville, Mike Babcock, and Peter Chiarelli do think about them and that may be reflected in how their teams do. But we have character — and I guess that will have to be my consolation.

    • habstrinifan says:

      Sorry to say we have sunk this low because we have hired from the shallow end of the pool.

      Would we hire a Babcok? I’ll let you answer.

      Should we have hired a Larry Robinson? I’ll let you answer.

      Should we have found a place for Kirk Muller? I’ll let you answer.

      You make a list of our last string of coaches after Demers say.

      Then you answer.

      • hansolo says:

        Thanks for helping me make my points. The answers are no, yes and yes — but the language issue got in the way, didn’t it? And, therein lies the problem. If we want truly outstanding people, we may have to compromise on the language issue. But if the UN can offer simultaneous translation, maybe we could?

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          Like your Yeses.
          Why not Babcock?

          • hansolo says:

            Trini asked if we WOULD hire a Babcock. I don’t think we WOULD, even though we SHOULD, because he’s simply not French enough. I know he went to McGill but I don’t know if he speaks French.

          • Dunboyne Mike says:

            Gotcha. I don’t know about his French either, but I thought someone authoritative here had posted the last time his name came up that Babcock’s French was pretty good.

      • Mavid says:

        I liked Carbo..don’t think he got a fair shake..

        Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

    • wjc says:

      Exchange the word ‘meciocrity’ and put in ‘parady’.

      How does Montreal have an advantage over Florida.

      Every ‘streak’ is unsustainable so eotp was just stating the obvious.

      A few wins and they will be on an unsustainable steak again.

      Character is important.

      Parady is the goal of the league and there are many things in place to ensure PARADY is maintained….success today……slippage tomorrow.

      wjc

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Cheers hs.
      Are we talking about revenue-generated complacency a la Leafs?

  12. Forum Dog says:

    Positives from last night:

    Beaulieu looked really good considering his age and NHL experience. He has great offensive instincts and there were a few times where he a PK looked very comfortable moving the puck back and forth. His isn’t a physical force at this stage, but he is tall with a good size frame, so will only improve in that area. Active stick and aggressive mindset, he’ll be fine as a defender;

    Bourque played well I thought. Actually laid some hits and turned pucks over. That is what they need from him, either to make him interesting for trade, or to beef up these small lines;

    Leblanc didn’t get much ice, but he was tenacious along the right wall and won a few puck battles. Something the Habs are sorely lacking.

    The negatives (from my perspective):

    Eller did not have a tonne of jump, and his lax reaction to Emelin’s play off the boards allowed the puck to go right to Riley Sheahan for the game winner;

    Desharnais was invisible, and I believe that it was his man (Kronwall) who snuck behind and scored that 3rd goal. Davey had his back to him and there were 4 Habs all watching the puck instead of taking a man;

    That line change on the 4th goal was just horrible. I don’t know who thought a wholesale change when the puck was in that part of the zone was a good idea, and it was compounded by the fact that Plekanec (who is one of the slowest line changers out there) and Gorges (I think) kind of moseyed over to the bench like not much was happening. If your gonna change, GET TO THE DAMN BENCH. Even in my men’s league it drives me nuts when guys are gliding to the bench while the play develops behind them.

    Bottom line is not enough fight. These guys lose battles and don’t come at the opposition hard enough to force turnovers. They look worn down. Unless it just a really bad, team-wide case of the flu, something is gonna have to give….

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Cheers, Dog. Helps fill out the picture for those of us who couldn’t see the game.

      Is there a possibility that the low-intensity fighting for the puck is influenced by an unconscious suspicion that coming out of the corner/off the boards with the puck you’d find no one to give it to or that no one would do anything useful with it if you got it to them?

      (A pretty bleak question, apologies!)

      • Forum Dog says:

        There is no doubt that the there are very few Habs who go to the net with any sense of purpose, so it could be that they have accepted that there is no play to be made. Personally, I think it is more a result of having Desharnais, Briere, Plekanec, Pacioretty and, to a lesser degree, Gionta and Gallagher (who at least try to dislodge pucks) getting the bulk of the forecheck time. These are the guys who get between 15 and 20 minutes of ice per game, and they are not gonna win many battles. Pacioretty could, but doesn’t play a physical brand of hockey.

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          I remember much collective drooling over various St Louis fowards in the run-up to the trade deadline last summer…..

          • Forum Dog says:

            Yup. St. Loo has a good mix of size and skill up front. All you need is one or two guys like Backes and Stewart threatening people in front of their own net and it gives guys like Steen, Schwartz, etc. the courage to go there and make things happen.

            Also interesting to note that St. Loo has a few homegrown players, but have not been afraid to go the trade route (Bouwmeester, Stewart, Steen, Halack, etc.) to get the players they want or need. If you don’t have the horses you go and find them, and then let the youngsters you didn’t trade grow into their roles.

          • Dunboyne Mike says:

            So dare I ask, would you deal Patches for the right return?

          • Forum Dog says:

            That’s a tough one. If the return was right, yeah, I’d consider it. He is a dynamite player, but he has too many dips in intensity and physical play. The return would have to be really, really good though, and would have to be for a player under reasonable contract. There would be no point in trading him for another version of himself.

  13. Maritime Ronn says:

    frankcasting says:
    while I have never been fond of this roster or this coach, they were doing something right for the first half of the season. What happened? Did the league simply adjust? That sounds too simple.
    ————————–
    There are some great coaches/assistant coaches out there along with video coaches that can break every team down from strengths to weaknesses.

    It’s really not rocket science playing against the Habs.
    As Dominik Hasek did with the Sabres years ago, Price has camouflaged some terrible ’5 man D Unit’ performances.
    Now that he has returned to almost human being performances, it’s there for everyone to see.

    Add to that the superb Specialty Teams play in the early going, and that also camouflaged other aspects.

    EX:
    Habs 5X5 play now ranks 26th in the NHL.
    Habs 5X5 goals scored ranks 29th with only 74 goals scored.
    Habs 5X5 goals against now ranks 10th (Price) 89 goals scored against.

    Therefore, the Habs have given up 15 more goals against than scored in 5X5 hockey.
    Not good.

    Coaches know they can beat the Habs 5X5, and the Habs were winning with the PP and PK play.

    So what do they try to do if you are an opposing coach?
    Neutralize the PP, and its 2 keys being Subban and Markov which several teams have done in the past several games…and because of that, the Habs PP has gone south.

    By either scoring a PP goal or assisting on one, Subban has been involved in 47% of all Habs PP goals, and Markov 44%.

  14. --Habs-- says:

    Its a mess! And whats worse is I don’t see how they can turn it around with “MOST” of that group! Especially now that we’re getting into the “DOD DAYS” of the season!

    “Habs” Watch and learn….! Or Not!

  15. habstrinifan says:

    I’m going on record! Serious posts are pompous grandiosity!

    Some body tell habstrinifan to STFU!!!!!!!!!!!!

  16. Hobie Hansen says:

    From the outside looking in. You take a look at the Montreal roster and see no clear cut 1st line forwards. You see a team littered with undersized players. You see a team that almost every expert picked to either miss the playoffs or finish right on the bubble the past two seasons.

    Instead, the Habs finish last season in top spot in their division and currently sit in the middle of the pack in the playoff standings. Way better than expected results.

    Did the Habs fall flat on their face last year in the playoffs, yes. Are they sucking at the moment, yes. At the moment though, the Coach and the GM are more than safe because of the results they’ve gotten out of the team.

    No new coach is going to get better results from this lineup, they pretty much stink. Maybe a new coach comes in and sparks the lineup for a few weeks but that would be about it.

    Even though Bergevin’s minor moves haven’t been all that great, he hasn’t done anything to hurt the future by trading away any young players or draft picks. That’s the most important thing.

    So as fans we’re going to have to suck it up! We’re going to have to wait a few years until guys like Galchenyuk are a couple years older. We’re going to have to wait until Tinordi and Beaulieu are a couple years older. We’re going to have to wait until De La Rose, McCarron and maybe a guy like Crisp make an impact on the club.

    Bergevin is sticking with the plan by not listening to the idiotic fans and staying the course by not mortgaging the future! The team has been going around in circles for 20 years because of that!

    So let’s hope the boys can turn it around here and not freak out and demand we fire the coach or start trading away the future!

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      You’re doing what we find hardest: writing “From the outside looking in”.

      Not a nice picture, but good observations. I think I’m with you on preaching patience. But no one’s saying it’s fun.

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        It sucks man. I’d rather a few more years of drafting smart, holding onto our picks and not making knee jerk trades or signing overrated and high priced UFAs. That has done absolutely nothing for us over the last 20 years, nothing.

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          Agreed. And the possible upside is that it does feel like MB may be — or grow into being — a good GM, and that what he’s doing is essentially good. In comparison, the last 20 years often felt aimless. I do share the frustration of posters who vent here about how waiting 20 years is long enough and we shouldn’t have to wait more. But we do.

        • CJ says:

          I agree boys. Gotta hang in there for now.

    • Forum Dog says:

      Good post. The one thing that I would take some issue with is the idea of mortgaging the future. I agree that Bergevin has been good at stockpiling his picks and keeping the young players in the system, but the Habs don’t have many forwards in the system who will really help them in the next couple of years. Obviously Galchenyuk will get better, Gallagher is about as reliable as they come, and Pacioretty is dynamite when his fuse is lit, but unless they make a move they are gonna be stuck with small, mediocre centremen and wingers, which in today’s NHL is a problem.

      I also think that a big part of the Habs problem over the last 20 years is not because the future was mortgaged, but because there were some really bad drafts, poor trades, and a several bad signings.

      I don’t want to see them mortgage the future, but I think they need to consider making a move and using some of their depth and picks to get a quality piece. They need to keep Tinordi, Beaulieu, and maybe Fucale, but they could move pretty much any other prospect and it wouldn’t break my heart, especially if it got them something good now. I also wouldn’t be opposed to them trading a high or mid-round pick if it got them someone who was under reasonable contract and could play for the next 2-3 years.

  17. habstrinifan says:

    Ok one serious post….. please please can I?

    I posted tongue in cheek re the ‘grandeur’ promises of social re-engineering that heralded MT’s ascension to the RDS pundit’s Mt. Olympus. Coach of the HABS.

    On a serious note, a clear hockey emphasis should be the trumping factor in how we select our next coach.

    If you consider the following:
    a) the HABS are in a market where they cannot really tank.
    b) the Habs cannot become a third rate franchise (maybe they already are?)
    c)the current NHL environment… so difficult to trade/draft/sign yourself to consistent superority.

    You need a coaching team (deliberate word ) which can look at players statistics,tendencies, compatabilities, black and white stats) and draw conclusions from them which can then be put into coaching and practice strategies.

    You need to look at PACS and see that as Bill had said, he is not only NOT a power forward like (?) but where he shoots from etc etc. He does NOT score his goals from net scrums for instance.

    You need to look at a player like Gallagher and stop him from ‘reinventing’ himself as a ‘charcater’ guy only… forsaking playmaking to some extent.

    You need to look at a player like Eller. I posted before ..draw him up a chart. I’m gonna put you in this situation and I need you taking so many shots per game from ‘here’ making so many passes from ‘here’. Basically I want you to play to harness your skills.

    You need to look at a player like Prust. I see people now calling Prust a waste etc. Really really unfair and harsh. He obviously is not playing with an understanding of a role.

    Etc etc.

    So you need real hockey coaching. Your practices need to be broken into units.. and then your units brought together in a whole.
    A guy must make a pass at HIGH SPEED (I repeat HIGH SPEED) and react instinctively at how that pass is received… where it puts the other players on the ice.

    A coach needs to spend every waking moment deciphering and establishing these ‘hockey’ tangibles.

    Let the players moms and dads make the player a better person and the captains in the romm take care of the freakin culture in the room.

    Be a PHORKIN HOCKEY COACH!

  18. SmartDog says:

    Man this coach is buggy.
    Therrien 3.0 (if you include the Pens) jams up at the same place in the season that Therrien 1.0 and 2.0 did.

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

  19. JohnBellyful says:

    It’s been suggested the Canadiens trade away their veterans — Gionta, Gorges, Bourque, Briere, even Markov — but would this be a case of flooding the market and thereby diminishing their value? Or can a pool of talent so shallow and aged create even a ripple of interest?

  20. WhatsUp and all those Timmins supporters… Please explain to me how he is soooo excellent? We have had some decent drafts (Price, PK, Max) but if pegged against the elite of the league who are not Canadian former glory top sixers (Sharks, Anaheim, Chicago, St. Louis, Boston, Pittsburgh) our current team and AHL farm club DON’T have depth, any stars. So why is Timmins considered so great? I don’t see it (think Fisher… what’s that draft doing for us?)

    I’m speechless! 20 years and counting…

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      The word is that Fisher and Leblanc were Gainey overrides. Seems to come from a reputable source.

    • Mark C says:

      Your issue is you only see Timmins picks that don’t work out and don’t bother to realize all the other bad pick other head scouts make.

    • CJ says:

      I’m sorry you don’t see it. Many of Timmons picks are already in the NHL. Guys like Price, PK, McDonough, Galley, Chucky, Pacioretty. Now Beaulieu. If you compare the Canadiens draft record since the 2004 lockout we are at the top of the NHL in terms of graduating talent into the league.

      It’s one thing to find talent when you hold those lottery selections, but Timmons has proven that he can consistently find talent all over the draft board. If anything Bergevin should be giving him more picks to work with this spring.

      • Mark C says:

        He’s the last guy to be blamed. If anyone is suggesting otherwise they should be providing names of suggested replacements, so we compare track records.

        • CJ says:

          I believe we see it the exact same way. I don’t understand where the poster was coming from. I get everyone is upset, but as you’ve noted, Timmons is the last place where the finger needs to be pointed.

  21. JUST ME says:

    Stop limiting yourself with criticizing the coach. Sometimes i think it has more to do with the language he speaks that the job he does. Change the coach all you want, the results will be the same.He and we just do not have the players needed to do better . Face it and deal with it. Do not think that anyone in the Habs management reads or cares about HIO but if they did , they would not find anything really helpfull here other than the usual…

    • Not limiting. So much to criticize. Most on HIO understand it isn’t an easy fix and has been decades in the making. Why an owner, any owner, would stand by and just hope or have faith when so much revenue comes in the playoffs and the value of the franchise goes up with that revenue? That I can’t understand. Molson has to be pulling his hair out. He paid what, $500 million for this club? Sure it fills up every night, but that will soon be over if the tank is on…

      I’m speechless! 20 years and counting…

    • Mr.Habs71sv says:

      I am getting tired of the Carey Priceitis. He does not shut the door! Cup 25 will not be with him if and when that happens. So with the reasoning that is he losing only by a handful of goals let in that’s great or brilliant? A loss is a loss. No matter how you spin it! That is like having a slight case of death. Let’s go for five in a row! The fans will moan and groan but will continue to pour through the turnstiles. Everyone knows that. Molson gets the last laugh!
      Till next time….

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Where were you last summer, Just Me? There were some excellent book recommendations.

  22. MT – Eh… we deserve a better fate

    Reporter – Why MT? Your team has no compete level, is undersized, the D is disorganized and lost and the lines you change make no sense and have no consistency.

    MT – The team competed at a high level tonigh

    Reporter – But you lost your third straight and let in your 44th goal in 12 games

    MT – We have to try harder

    Gionta – I agree

    MT – Tanks Capitain

    Reporter – He just lost me too!

    I’m speechless! 20 years and counting…

  23. JUST ME says:

    About what night ?
    Last night ?
    You promise it`s the last one ? Thank god !

    I sure do hope that tonight will be totally different but i have my doubts. I just do not think we have all it takes to win even against a very average team like the Wings cause let`s admit it, they are not what they used to be and yesterday was not a good game for them either but we were just even worse then them !

    I do not know why we are so much different from the beginning of the season. Same squad that always went ahead on the scoresheet and same d-squad that did not let anything go through. I just do not buy into the schmurfs lacking energy theory. It is more about talent,skills and will. Too many average players not helping the few players that want and can change things. Moen,Bourque,Emelin,Diaz,Bouillon,Bournival,Briere,Parros,White,Leblanc, Murray,Gionta,Jorges and who else ..They all have their excuse, slump, injury, limited talent ,inexperience,ice time ,but the end results are the same. Average output not enough to make the difference.

    Can`t wait to see what changes will be brought to the veteran squad before trade deadline cause it`s time. The kids like P.K. are being put under the spotlight for no reason other than they are the only ones being able to change things.It should not be that way but we are in a transition season. The core of the team is in place now let`s put some meat on the bone.

    • Yes! We need meat. Carnivorous, fang induced blood lust! That is exactly what we need. Let’s bring back the low five! Go PK and Pricer!

      I’m speechless! 20 years and counting…

    • Habfan17 says:

      What is that you say? No more excuses was I thought, the motto of Therrien!

      Why is it the team is so sloppy but yet, Therrien either does not hold practices or he holds baseball on ice practices. I know as per the new agreement, players get a set amount of days off, but Therrien gives them way more! I am sure the players know they need to work on things, that must lead to a lack of faith in the coach

      Habfan17

  24. jrshabs1 says:

    Who is the next under qualified french coach of our Montreal
    Canadiens going to be? Same can be said about the Montreal Canadiens current GM.
    It’s hard to compete when your hands are always tied. When the Habs were enjoying their glory days the french guys were on the ice, not upstairs or behind the bench making the decisions.
    There is a direct correlation between the 20 years suckatude and the french only policy. Gainey was the exception..but his team also had the longest playoff run since 1993.
    It’s hard to compete when your hands are tied.

    MOAR BIGGAR!!!!!

  25. Maritime Ronn says:

    For Habs fans that are interested in making the playoffs, the last time a full 82 game schedule was played was 2011-12.

    Ottawa finished in 8th place with 92 points, with an up and down year and some awful streaks:

    – Started the year 1-5-0, and the 1 win was a SO.
    – Start November: 0-4-1.
    – Start December: 2-4-2
    – End January: 0-6-1 ( 4 Regulation losses in a row)
    – Mid March: 1-3-2 (3 Regulation losses in a row)
    – April: 3 Regulation losses in a row

  26. careysubban3176 says:

    “Not impress. It’s a pathetic performance after the team doesn’t care. You know, it’s like, I’m gone be happy to play for eight minutes. I’m not gone be happy to play eight minutes. What those guys say if take fifty percent of their salary because they only play for fifty percent of the time, that’s enough. That defense squad, I think their goal; I really think their goal is to be worse defense squad in the league. You know they turn the puck over, no vision, they soft. I never see bunch of defensemen so soft and you put combination together, that’s the result you gonna get.” Where’s the old MT when you need him

    Stop blaming the goaltender! He can only do so much.

  27. WhatUp says:

    Boonie: RE: Thimmins – I think his record is pretty impressive specially considering where the Habs have typically drafted – he’s had a few great/ homers type picks (Subban, Pax, and this guy in NY – I think McDonaugh is his name)..also Price, not sure he wanted AK (there was a story there)…
    MB: still a bit early, MT: couldn’t agree more (guy is lost out there).
    I would see 2 strategies: door #1: some minor trades to try to ignite, door #2: not wholesale but a makeover: trade Markov before his value drops (no point in resigning him, trending down quickly + give Emelin a shot on left with PK), trade Eller or Plecks (Eller will never be more than a 3rd liner that can move to 2nd line occasionally, Plecks is one of my favorite Habs but I would think he could fetch a very decent package and if the future is not now then build for it)….trade Bourque and/or Briere, Diaz..
    the risk here is a status quo with the follow up downwards spiral – this is not good for morale (pisses off Price, PK – we need to resign him)…I really think MB needs to do something (coach or player wise – typically one starts with one or a few players before the coach

  28. Larry Robinson! Save us pleeeeeease! (I agree with Trini)

    I’m speechless! 20 years and counting…

  29. boing007 says:

    The Habs have been playing below .500 for the past twenty games. They would have to play almost .600 in the next 31 to make the playoffs. Highly unlikely.

    Richard R

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      The current pace for 8th place in the East is 90 points.
      If that stays the same, the Habs need 31 points in the next 31 games.
      A record of 14-14-3 or 13-13-5 would do it.

  30. frankcasting says:

    Here’s what I don’t get: while I have never been fond of this roster or this coach, they were doing something right for the first half of the season. What happened? Did the league simply adjust? That sounds too simple.

    What’s our record since Emelin came back (too soon and still injured)?When and why did Raphael Diaz become Davis Drewiske? Has Markov expired right before our eyes?

    And a huge WTF goes to MT and his “lines” – the Laffs here in my town went through some tough times, but at least Kessel and Lupul knew who they were gonna play with on a given night, then they picked up a solid D man and now look at ‘em, back where they left off in November.

    We have a GM who doesn’t panic, a coach who does, and a bunch of players who don’t give a flying crap. Go Habs Go!

    Loving the Habs since 1965

  31. Davey93 says:

    Therrien is here till his contract is up everyone! Let’s move on, he’s not going anywhere and we’ll continue to see this downfall for the rest of the season. We’ll make the playoffs as a wild card hopefully and get eliminated in 5 games. The cycle goes on and on and on and on…….I’m guessing we’ll start seeing progress in 2 years when MT is gone and the torch is passed on to the kids. For now we’ll remain mediocre at best.

  32. JohnBellyful says:

    Here’s why the Habs’ season is headed down the toilet, it’s because of their toiletries:
    Listlessrine mouth wash, Really Old Spice body wash, Crestfallen toothpaste, Ralph Kramden cologne, VO4 shampoo, LossOfEdge shaving cream, Just for Meh-n hair dye, Dove deodorant …

  33. habstrinifan says:

    Who needs a coach. Just get the guys Netflix.

  34. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Good morning from over the water.

    I’ve already been to an u11s soccer game in 100kph wind+rain! Basketball still to come and dinner with my air corps cadet who has evening leave tonight from basic (and every nook and cranny in between filled with grading papers!)

    Couldn’t stay conscious last night, saw the lowlights, really great exchanges this morning: Jim, CJ, Maritime, Boonie, Trini, Twi, 17, Ahab et al.

    To cheer myself up I watched the Dallas-Toronto highlights as well. No point in gloating (as in kettle and pot), but OMG, WHAT were they thinking with that contract for Phaneuf? Was he playing with flu or is he just a really, really terrible defenseman?

    Homily
    Last summer, the HIO commentariat seemed to reach a consensus with the Club and the wider hockey community that what Montreal most needed to pick up, ideally, was a big, nasty, and hopefully mobile D and a strong, scoring forward (an actual power forward as in Lucic II, was just pie in the sky). I thought the feeling was that IF we did that we would have a shot at making the playoffs, which would be fun while we continue to build from our youth. We didn’t do that: we got Briere and Murray. Now, we all have the necessary intellects to follow and comprehend this unfortunate sequence of events, BUT: we DON’T temper our expectations accordingly! If we’re re-building, we are boys against men, often literally, and therefore probably we need to adapt more of a Panthers mind-set than a former-dynasty-home-of-hockey-the-Rocket-used-to-play-for-us mentality. It would be easier for us to be more patient, less disappointed, and more encouraged by good things, than to be fixated on our place in the standings and our playoff chances. I’m not suggesting we have to accept everything, but only that maybe our intellects — which do seem to understand what’s going on — need to rein in our hearts and our passion, which clearly don’t!

    Such a recalibrated mind-set would not mean the elimination of calls for trades or a new coach. And in that vein, I would pose a question: don’t we have to wait a bit longer for Bergevin to grow into his role? Is it not still too early for us to start speculating that maybe he’s not really GM material? There’s a huge gap between GM and assistant, comparable with how easy it is to take pot-shots as leader of the opposition compared with actually being PM.

    Do we expect/demand too much of the team we have? Should we be allowing Bergevin more time (as in 2-3 seasons)?

    • JohnBellyful says:

      A-
      (I would have given you an A but you should never end an assignment with questions. The challenge is to provide answers only.)

    • twilighthours says:

      I’m supposed to give you heat because of the time you just wasted.

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        Thank you.
        See how much I need you?
        Ok, I’m leaving now. Just wanted to post one big momma…

        (and check occasionally to see if anyone replies…)

        (and reply to any possible replies…)

        (and, oh, just check the initial responses to the new thread….)

        (and compose a rapid reply to anyone who posts anything outlandish……)

        (and, for the new thread, post another request to Twi to send me back to my papers….)

    • habstrinifan says:

      Bergevin=more time” MT=time up!

    • CJ says:

      Good morning Mike, or perhaps more appropriately, good afternoon.

      Great post. I am of the opinion that we need to give Bergevin more time. Good, bad or indifferent, he has been on the job less then 2 years. I don’t think that we can grade performance just yet. The signings he has made will not impact the team long term. I am awaiting his decision on Markov, Gionta, Diaz, etc. At various times this season reports have circulated that he was in the process of negotiating with the before mentioned players on extensions. I sincerely hope that this is not the case. It is great to get feelers out, but a 35 year old Gionta and Markov are not going to help insulate this group going forward.

      Look, it’s easy to sit here and be an armchair quarterback, er GM. My take is we identify the core, play the core in their natural positions, and explore opportunities to improve and grow this core by managing assets either via trade and/or drafting and development.

      In any event, I hope everyone has a great day, highlighted by a win tonight. As bad as things have been, it feels like if we could just get a win, we might be able to restore some confidence and shake this slide.

      Or, maybe we continue to lose, which allows Bergevin to turn over the roster. Either way, I’ll be watching!

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        Cheers, CJ.
        Good attitude.
        From a position of ignorance (=armchair GM as you say), I would be saying let the young guys learn how to play NHL hockey this year. They may lose lots of games, but they’ll be ready to start next season, by which time I will have created a few wrinkles, found some pieces.

        Playoffs? Let the chips fall where they may.

        And everyone be patient.

        • CJ says:

          Absolutely. If the playoffs appear out of reach, let’s retool.

        • cliff rashotte says:

          Good Morning Mike…i remember chatting with you earlier about growing up in the same era where in Montreal it was all feast and no famine,Where not winning the cup was sacriligeous,Now its all famine no feast , That said I beleive panic is not in the cards…we are a few years away from contending so dont make knee jerk moves that will put us even further away..I have no answers but panic isnt one of them..

          • Dunboyne Mike says:

            Hi Cliff. Yup, remember that.
            Hobie and CJ above have good posts above on that theme.
            Since 1993 it often seemed hopeless or pointless. I think now there is a sense of direction, plus a degree of promise which, while it doesn’t make losses any easier to watch, suggests we may soon be winning more than we lose.

    • boing007 says:

      Molson should have hired a wheeler dealer like Glenn Sather instead. Or great illusionists like The Amazing Kreskin, David Copperfield and Criss Angel.

      Richard R

  35. habstrinifan says:

    Stephae Richer for coach!

    What you no like?

  36. HankHardball says:

    Is this as good as it gets for a team that’s not in it to win it?

    Is this the best we can expect from a team that has ability to communicate with the media as such a high priority?

    I don’t know. But it is a condition no other team in the league has to deal with.

  37. habfan01 says:

    MB sent word out that Bourque is available- yet he is still with the team right now. Has MB received 29 offers and is trying to decide which is the best? Or does no one want him? That’s going to be the problem with dumping a lot of these vets. You armchair Gms can theorize about what great returns we can get for some of these guys, but in reality- it aint gonna happen. Not the way they’re playing now. I feel another big walkaway come July 1st- ala Gainey.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Well observed!
      We are so often delusional here, assuming other teams’ GMs are even less informed than we are!

      To get the big pieces we lust after we need to be ready to lose something we all like.

      If I had to pluck one player from within the ring-fence, it would be Pacioretty. Terrible loss, potentially extremely valuable, foundation-building return.

      John Leclair, I hear ye cry, and I am one whose scars from that one still register pain sometimes!

      But I cry back (and it’s why I was enquiring about it early in the week: Frank Mahovolich.

      • habfan01 says:

        Yes Mike- You have to give something to get something- and if we did trade away some of our best assets- would the potential return be worth it?
        Agree about LeClair- he’s from my hometown and that trade upset a lot of folks around here- especially Bruin fans who had switched allegiances when he made the Habs.

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          I suggested Pacioretty last week.

          A few pointed out how difficult he would be to replace. Correct.

          And one or two suggested they wouldn’t trust a novice GM to know how to get a good return for something so precious.

          To clarify, I’m not saying Trade Patches! Only saying if I HAD to tempt other GMs with one of our quality players, it would be him.

          (Just checked, there’s only a year between us in “Habs Fan Since”, so like me you probably remember Frank M playing but not all the details of the trade. You anywhere near Jim?)

          Cheers

          • habfan01 says:

            Yeah- remember Frank, but not much of the details. When you look at the roster, there’s very few that another would want- realistically. And those they do are the ones we need to keep. Don’t know if I’m near Jim or not. From NW Vermont- as far as I know no one else from around here seems to follow this site

      • DadidolizedDougHarvey says:

        Not just Frank Mahovolich … Russ Courtnall too!

  38. jrs10069 says:

    Kinda happy they got smoked again, 2 more like that and MT is out

    What I would do it I was GM…Fire Therrien, he’s a clown and everyone including himself knows it. Hire…….Vinny Damp as the new habs coach. He’s a smart mf and I think the players would respect him.

    Trade Diaz, Emelin and Eller and get your hands on Kane and a solid D. Bring Tinordi up.

    Get rid of the cube and Gionta and voila cup contender..

    At least we wouldn’t have to look at MT’s ugly mug

    jrs10069

  39. Old Bald Bird says:

    On a positive note, Bolyou [sic] reminded me of Guy Lapointe for some reason: somewhat similar stature, good skater, offensive minded. I liked Guy — a lot. Okay, so I’m grasping at straws. And my vision ain’t what it used to me.

  40. CranbrookEd says:

    Last night was not entertaining and featured a largely uninspired team from Montreal . . .

    . . . the good news is that Pacioretty has just signed a long term deal . . . unfortunately, it is with the Egg Producers of North America who are apparently very impressed with his being able to carry a dozen eggs in his back pocket for the last dozen games, without cracking even one egg . . . this will however result in some dissension on the team, as at least another 8 or 9 players were also trying to gain the same deal . . .

    CranbrookEd
    Mr. Beliveau: “Pure Pak mais oui”! . . .

  41. habstrinifan says:

    Question #1 for next coach interview#

    What would be your main goal?
    Answer: “Bring a positive attitude; new culture; team concept/no excuses respect for the fans attitude to the dressing room.

    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX WRONG ANSWER… next.

    “Win hockey games”….
    Ding ding ding ding….. When can you start sir?

    See where I’m coming from? Enough of the pomposity …

  42. boonie says:

    We’ve been good. We’ve been bad. Realistically, our current team is somewhere near the middle. Talent-wise, standing-wise and other-wise. We can debate the relative value of individual players and the merits of buying or selling at the trade deadline.

    The real question should be – is this ORGANIZATION designed to be successful?

    Molson is not a bad owner. He spends money. He’s not crazy like Harold Ballard. He doesn’t believe he’s a GM like Jerry Jones. He’s average with the jury pending his first major hire – Bergevin.

    What are MB’s qualifications… not much. He was the fourth man in Chicago’s successful hierarchy. Tallon, Bowman, Cheveldayoff were all above MB. So, Molson plucks a guy with no real track record as GM at the NHL or minor league level and no direct decision-making responsibility to be our guy. The Steelers hired Mike Tomlin, who’s max level was one year as DC with The Vikes to be head coach and he’s won a Superbowl. This is rare. MB is learning on the job and his moves are questionable. Tallon led an all-star front office. He’s doing less in Florida. Bowman seems to be a winner. Chev won at the AHL level. He’s turning out to be less than stellar in the bigs. We got the guy a notch below them.

    MB adds Rick Dudley. He has one year as the Thraser’s GM. Hard to gleen insights from one year, a bunch of big moves and a team vacating a market for the second time in NHL history. Add one year assisting Burke and a marginal three-year coaching stint and you have MB’s right hand man.

    MB rehired MT. Yikes. Hiring guys fired somewhere else is one thing. Re-hiring your own fired guy is whole different level. Without google-ing it, I can think of Billy Martin and Roger Neilson’s paper bag incident (see, Ballard, Harold, above). At least Martin was a winner the first time the incomparably crazy George S hired him. Martin won the AL in ’76, and won it all in ’77. His other stints in ’79, ’83, ’85 and ’88 weren’t stellar. At least they brought back a former Yank player and a winning manager. MT was neither a Hab player or a winner as a Hab coach. Why is he back?

    At best, the just is out on MB.

    MT. Yikes. EOTP provided the statistical evidence for what many of us witness in two recent posts. MT changed a winning system to a questionable one. Who knows why. Amazingly, he is replicating the precise statistical trajectory that got him sack in Pittsburgh.

    Now, onto Timmins. By one oft-cited analysis, we have the best draft record of any NHL team over the past couple of decades. On the other hand, the last Hab draftee to score 50 goals or 80 points in Hab uni was Richer. Drafted in 1986. Overall, as a scout Timmins works in laudable. Our development leaves much to be desired. But, other than not firing Trevor, he ain’t an MB decision.

    So, to recap. We got an inexperienced owner who’s major decision is questionable. And, we have an inexperienced GM who’s player decisions are questionable and coaching choice highly and increasingly suspect.

    Now, show of hands – who here really thinks our biggest problem is on-ice mediocrity?

    • twilighthours says:

      That’s a nice summary. My biggest problem is that I have to grade a bunch of papers and I’d rather go skiing. My biggest Habs-related problem is that they bring me no joy to watch. I don’t know what to make of Bergevin, but I’m pretty certain therrien sucks and that we could actually be playing better than this. I could easily be wrong.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Dudley has been a GM for 4 NHL hockey teams- Ottawa, Tampa, Florida, Atlanta.
      When Bergevin was hired, he was assistant general manager for Chicago

      • boonie says:

        Good catch on Dudley’s other GM appointments. How were his teams in Ottawa, Tampa and Florida?

        MB was the assistant GM after Florida and Winnipeg raided Chicago’s cupboard.

        • Maritime Ronn says:

          You may want to check out what he did in Tampa such as signing a free agent no one wanted named Martin St. Louis and trading for goalie Khabiboulin.
          He gets little credit for the Tampa Stanley cup

          • boonie says:

            Maybe he’s our answer. let MB learn from him.

          • Maritime Ronn says:

            He’ll be 65 next week and happy with what he’s doing now.
            AGMs and other hockey people can only provide info and recommendations. Boss Man makes the final decisions.

    • Captain aHab says:

      [raises his hand]

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

    • SmartDog says:

      Yes. MB’s shown no real talent for the job.

      But it’s Therrien who is fracking up the team. Any team that plays worse the more time they spend with the coach….

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

    • gauver says:

      the front office has been the source of our poor to mediocre performances. not since Sam Pollock have we had great leadership. 20+ years of poor personnel decisions have led us to this. I was talking with another 45+ Habs fan and we agreed that if the current management can’t make some good personnel changes between now and the start of next season, we might disengage completely from this team. i am perpetually frustrated and not often entertained much less enthused by this team.

  43. adamkennelly says:

    faaaaaak…this is getting ugly.

    our Forward group includes at least 4 guys who should not be playing in the NHL given their current ability to contribute.

    our D has at least 2 such players every game.

    cupboard is bare in Hammertown.

    no relief in site.

  44. habstrinifan says:

    Some beautiful concepts we come up with!

    Stop with the “Therrien was hired as a bridge coach” please. If it doesnt make sense it isnt true.

    And it doesnt make sense.

  45. CrackerJackAgent says:

    “Se vogliamo che tutto rimanga come e, bisogna che tutto cambi”

    “If we want everything to stay as it is, everything will have to change”

  46. Captain aHab says:

    Let’s talk HC options. You and I know that he will be a francophone so might as well get over it. Who is out there who is a possibility?

    Guy Boucher – Maybe put an eyepatch on him and with that nasty scar on his face, he might scare some players.
    Sylvain Lefebvre – Heir apparent I guess but maybe not
    Benoit Groulx – Gatineau Olympics
    Pascal Vincent -Jets Assistant Coach who used to coach in the Q in Montreal
    Carbo 2.0 – Who knows?

    My money is on Groulx personally. But this shows just how little there is out there

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

    • Habfan10912 says:

      My money is on Boucher but I think minus a Therien meltdown, no change is forthcoming during the season.

    • habstrinifan says:

      I say Guy Carbonneau and Larry Robinson. I truly believe we can pry Robinson from San Jose… would have to be a great deal but we can.

      • fun police says:

        no. not carbonneau. he’s the coach who lost to toronto, didn’t pull his goalie, cost us the playoffs and said he wouldn’t change a thing he did in that game. carbonneau is such a good coach that he can’t even get interviewed anywhere else. he almost got the under-18 team relegated. let’s not recycle fired canadien coaches. let’s move on.

        • habstrinifan says:

          OK.. you convinced me. But if we hire Boucher please show him video of JM and MT and how things worked out for those two.

          I cant take another narrow-minded one concept plodder.

          I hear good things about him but in real life he has panicked.
          I remember the semi-finals in the AHL… his coaching lost them the game 7 after the team went up by two(?).

          He panicked. And I if you listened to the broadcast, the play by play and analysts were saying the same thing.

          Edit: But I also heard he has a brilliant and innovative mind. He will need a good experienced assistant… not a coterie of ‘yes men’.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      You may want to add this one to the list
      If the Habs can’t have Patrick Roy, maybe somewhere down the road they can have his present assistant coach Andre Tourigny…he meets all the criteria and has 11 years as a Q head coach along with 2 years of World Junior coaching

  47. Habfan17 says:

    I think the players are fed up of tiring themselves out, dumping the puck in and trying to retrieve it! It appears to me they are torn between not wanting to lose and sending a message that Therrien’s system is not the right one. Players mishandle the puck, stand still, stay on the perimeter, and overall seem lost!

    It is time to make moves for the future. Move out veterans who either won’t be around or don’t fit in the long term plan and bring in a coach that has more than one dimension!

    Habfan17

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I support this post. Aren’t we all a bit tired if watching an uninspired group of veterans night in and night out when Bournival and now Louie L get crumbs of ice time?

      • Habfan17 says:

        Thanks! Yes, it is hard to watch the kids, who are actually busting their humps, get little to no ice time. I want to see players like Pateryn and Tinordi brought up too, but maybe it is better not to, while the team seems to be in such disarray!

        Habfan17

      • CJ says:

        That really bothers me. Bournival, earlier this season, realized a great deal of success when paired with Gionta and Pleks. Let the kid play! Get Eller back at centre and put Bournival with Pleks and Gionta. Hopefully they can move the captain at the deadline, opening room for another promotion.

      • habstrinifan says:

        So do I. And this is what people who dump on the players miss. They do not put themselves in the players’ shoes.

      • twilighthours says:

        Old bald bird said it yesterday. If the team is trying to win, then let’s get some help on board. If it is in rebuild mode, then let’s actually play the kids. Nice to see beaulieu and LL up in the bigs.

    • twilighthours says:

      I’m not buying the “we stopped scoring because we started dumping” argument. I think we started dumping because 1) we were to too tired from chasing the puck in our own zone that we have to dump it to get off and 2) we don’t have a structure in place to get our forwards the space to even attempt a carry-in. We never get 3-on-2s. We are always back checked.

      Every hockey player wants to carry the puck in. No one wants to dump and chase.

  48. CJ says:

    Good morning. Losing is never fun. Tough to even pull many positives from this game. I’ve liked Beaulieu, who seems to be getting better every game. Kid is certainly making the most of his chance and is proving he wants to be here. I have also liked Leblanc, albeit in a limited role. Regrettably, some players are playing themselves off of this team.

    Once again, although I’m not a Therien fan, a lot of what ails this team can be placed at the feet of the guys on the ice. Stupid, selfish penalties and major coverage breakdowns are killing this group. Those who are working hard, are trying to do too much, which is causing confusion in the defensive zone. DD, for all his offensive zone wizardry, is lost in his own end. When he is in position, he simply loses the battle for position, giving up a great scoring chance. Eller is a centre. He is all over the ice, and is struggling to find his game. Move him back to centre and provide him with quality players. I could go on and on, as I’m sure you all could pointing out the issues.

    Suggestions aside, this, IMO, was never a top tier team. We are still way too small. I don’t believe it to be a coincidence that we started to struggle after 40 games, same as last year. The team is just physically beaten down. It’s only a dogged determination that keeps guys like Galley going. Until we get rid of all but one or two small players, we are going to get pushed around.

    Hopefully the losses turn the management’s team attention to the future, allowing them to use this dip, if sustained through the Olympic break, as the catalyst to make some trades at of before the deadline to begin the process of turning the team over.

    Lastly, I hope that’s our last nationally televised game on TSN for awhile. I can’t recall when we last won a nationally televised mid-week game, in which the team played a good game (this comment discounts the Ottawa win). It’s tough living in another major media market, where the fan base takes great pleasure in rubbing the loses in our face. I can’t wait for retribution. I only hope it’s sooner rather then later. Go Habs!

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Its clearly time isn’t it, CJ? Let’s turn this team over to the kids and see what happens.

      I’m on record as disliking this coach but he’s not the only issue here. As you and others have pointed out this us a flawed roster. Size at center being one if them. DD has an on ice awareness that’s unmatched on this team. You’ve pointed out the problem with him playing top line minutes. Watching how the team deals with the center position will be very telling for the future of this club.

      CHeers.

      • CJ says:

        I think so. If the results aren’t there, let’s at least set ourselves up for success in the future. Eller appears to be the forgotten man. It’s like a memo was circulated identifying those players in a contract year with a reminder from the coaching staff to ensure that all steps are taken to ensure they fail. Eller is one of our centres of the future. When Chucky returns, reunite them, along with Galley.

        At least by bringing up Tinordi and Pateryn now, there will be fewer growing pains next season. Heck, I’d take a chance with Morgan Ellis at this point over some of our current defence. Lastly, if only because PK seems to have a new partner every game, get he and Beaulieu together, including the first wave of the PP. Nothing left to lose at this point.

  49. francbiss says:

    I don’t understand Therrien’s strategies anymore. The “let’s put as many guys who can’t score on the pp” approach is simply baffling. Opposing teams coverage of Suban opens lane for the forwards but nobody is cashing in. We need more scoring forwards. Markov’s best days are behind him. Don’t sign him and move him to a team that needs a PP specialist for a decent forward. Habs used to be frustrating to watch now they’re downright embarrassing.

    • Captain aHab says:

      Well since none of our forwards can score, what is MT to do :-)

      I would personally have a first wave with Pleks, Eller and Gallagher. Two Cs in case one gets tossed out. All three are fast. All three can actually fight for the puck along the boards and come out with it and we need guys who can do that if we are going to dump and chase, which we pretty much have to do since opponents play a 1-3 and make it real tough to carry the puck in. Have Subban and Beaulieu as the top pair and keep Markov for the second wave.

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

  50. Habfan10912 says:

    Good morning friends. Its becoming more and more obvious that this team should be sellers and not buyers at the trade deadline. Hopefully the results yield a positive influence on the teams future.

    It’s also time to put our young players in more important roles. When Galchenyuk returns he should be moved to top line center and given 15+ minutes again. Louis L, Nathan B, Bournival and Eller should all be given more important ice time. Its clearly time.

    A couple of years ago Chrisadiens and I were in town the day Coach Bowel movement was dismissed. No coaching change this weekend. I will gladly settle for a nice breakfast this morning with Commandant, lunch with Btipro and L Ellie, followed by a Habs victory tonight.

    CHeers all

    • No offense = No Chance

      and this is not a Slump, we are making teams in the Eastern Conference Look Freaking Awesome ! :lol: You’re all welcome haha.

      Good Morning Jimmy, we are out all day for hockey, hope you somehow enjoy the game tonight. I hope Price is in net for you. Watching him flash the leather last night was the only thing worth watching.

      Have a great weekend and give the gang all a great big hug for me. :)

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

      • habstrinifan says:

        “and this is not a Slump”.. Amazing I know. I saw a post which ridiculed anyone who would call this a slide.. muchless a slump.

        Maybe a bunch of losses?

    • HabFab says:

      Hope you guys enjoy your day!

      • Chrisadiens says:

        Not feeling too great this morning Frank. We went to Maclean’s pub and I got one of those huge towers of beer for myself. (L Elle helped a little, but not much).

        Much to my surprise this morning, they started doing construction outside our hotel window. Jackhammering away at 7am. Lucky me.

        Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

  51. DipsyDoodler says:

    Let’s see.

    The offence can’t score at 5 on 5 or on the powerplay.

    The defencemen us lost, utterly lost.

    Price is being overplayed and seems to be showing signs of wear and tear.

    OK we might be more than a few tweaks away.

  52. HabFab says:

    Habsworld’s grading of the Bulldog forwards in the 2nd quarter;
    http://www.habsworld.net/article.php?id=3302

    • Captain aHab says:

      Well, let’s hope the next generation of draft picks pan out….

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

  53. Richard B says:

    Ooops, it could be worse. We could have phaneuf signed to a 45 year deal like the leafs.

  54. Richard B says:

    I tend to agree with “habsnexpos”
    3 yrs!
    Could it get any worse?

  55. Captain aHab says:

    I am truly worried we will see a mindnumbingly godawful trade coming up, like sending Eller and Beaulieu for a rental just so Molson can get revenue from a couple of home playoff games.

    I would like to see Pleks and a draft pick traded for a young winger with size but that would look too much like the team is tanking and is unlikely to happen. So we will sit on Pleks while he still has some value but the team has no shot at a Cup….that’s prime asset management right there.

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

  56. Richard B says:

    I have reached a point where ive accepted that this team will likely miss the playoffs. After the second period i said “$&@$ this. Im turning this garbage off”. But like a fool 25 minutes later i was watching again hoping AK27 would make an appearance and score a goal or two.
    Imo we have 3, maybe 4 players. Price, subban, chucky and maybe gallager. Plecks is a checking centre. A great one. But what does that make him? A third line center?
    Maxpac? Streaky enough to cause me to detest him. Im sure we will trade him and he will turn into j. Leclair.
    I miss koivu, higgins, ryder
    And ak27,ak46 (and the plecks that played with em) isnt this a very depressing statement? But its true!

    I also miss the markov from about 45 days ago!

  57. WVHabsfan says:

    After tonight, I no longer care what number I am

  58. BCG says:

    Welcome to what everyone else is sayin’ Boone. Try to keep up, Tips.

  59. scamorza says:

    well just drove for 3 hours in a SW ontario snow storm (mild for Montreal standards) to watch the game PVRed and well that was depressing – trying to find some positives…

    come to Dorion suits where you get no….”hassoles” _ Yvon Lambert

  60. scamorza says:

    come to Dorion suits where you get no….”hassoles” _ Yvon Lambert

  61. NLhabsfan says:

    It seem to me the players have stopped playing for the coaching staff.Another loss or two something sooner or later gotta give.Someone is going to be traded or fired,to shake of this loosing formula.Such promise and to drop down like a rock this past week is almost unbelievable.

    • HABSnEXPOS says:

      Such Promise? Have you looked at our roster? DD, Gionta Bourque Moen Briere Gorges Diaz Bouillion . No Forwards in Hamilton. Colberg and Delarose still 2 years away.

      Time To Move our only assets worth Moving Markov and Pleks and Keep Gallagher Chucky Eller Pacioretty Subban Bournival.

      Keep Beaulieu with MTL and Bring up Tinner and Pateryn.

      Hopefully we will be able to field a team in 3 years time.

  62. Habilis says:

    You know how I know that Therrien isn’t the answer for this team? I asked myself one question:

    If Roy or Boucher or whoever else was the coach right now, and the team was in the exact same situation, would even a single Habs fan be calling for Michel Therrien to be the next coach?

    We all saw his act for a year on RDS. I don’t think anyone was impressed. He’s the same old MT. Stubborn and vet-heavy.

    I’m not saying a coaching change turns this team around, because it’s deeper than that. But MT is not the answer going forward anyhow, so why wait? We have a good young core and a goalie in his prime. We need someone who can adapt and grow with the group. MT just ain’t it.

  63. Plekasuares says:

    We will win today. Only a few hours to puck drop. GHG

  64. Lil Snapper says:

    Another season, another depressing roster! Face it Habs land, we may not see a cup for decades the way this crap is being run! I havent been excited for this team for along time, too inconsistant and just plain pussies!

  65. johnnylarue says:

    Perfectly adequate rant, Habs4lifer.

    If this team is literally not “skilled” enough to carry the puck into the offensive zone–which shouldn’t be the case with uber nimble D-men like PK and Beaulieu–then it’s truly screwed because it sure as hell ain’t a dump-and-chase team either.

    Precious few of our players are capable of fishing the puck out of the corner or winning a battle along the boards on the forecheck. Puck battles in general are, by and large, an utterly futile undertaking.

    What’s really killing them is their face-palmingly sad inability to make a break-out pass out of the D zone. The first pass reception rate is just laughable these days. Just terrible disorganization in the neutral zone–no cohesion. Awful passing.

    Come to think of it, this is the first time I can remember the team sucking so bad in all three zones (though I’m certain it’s happened before). They’re just wholesale completely outta sorts.

    I suspect they’ll make it out of this… but I also suspect we’re about to find out what Bergevin is really made of over the next few weeks.

    • J.Ambrose.OBrien says:

      There was a very telling point when Markov had the puck in the corner with two Red Wings on him — in front and right behind. So he chipped the puck past the one behind him to Eller. Except ANOTHER Wing stepped up and intercepted.

      Suddenly everyone was blaming Markov. But there were 3 Wings forechecking Markov and not a single Habs forward near him. Eller stood watching the 3rd Wing come in in front of him. What are our defensemen supposed to do when they get no support from their own forwards?

      I remember Dec. 31, 1975

  66. teamhab says:

    I’m so distraught, I may take down my backyard swimming pool giant Hab crest to show my disdain.

  67. aHabGrowsInBrooklyn says:

    Eight is Enough. I’m stopping myself, if nobody else will do it.

  68. aHabGrowsInBrooklyn says:

    Seven and the Ragged Tiger.

  69. aHabGrowsInBrooklyn says:

    Sixth beer of the night.

  70. aHabGrowsInBrooklyn says:

    Fifth of vodka.

  71. HabsLifer says:

    The coach’s job is to prepare his team based on the offensive game of the opposition. This is obviously not happening. All throughout the game, Detroit maintained it’s line of defence at the blue line when we are the PK. The only play our team can make, like it or not, is the dump and chase. This did not happen all night. We are suppose to have a fast team. This aspect forces the opposition to make rush plays and ultimately mistakes.
    A good coach should be able to transition the team, depending on the opposition’s game plan. Mouse and cat game. Not happening.

    Subby is so compatitive, he is trying to do everything.

    Gallagher-heart and soul of the team.

    Patches? No where to be found except the penalty box.

    Murray played like a warrior, although limited in the skills part. Compare him to a Hal Gill.

    Beaulieu looks pretty good. Keep him in Montreal.

    Liked Leblanc’s speed. He looks better than ever IMO.

    Bottom line. The rest are not paying the price. No hustle or dicipline in the defensive zone.

    Price was Price. Could have been 8-1.

    That’s my rant. Any takers?

    ———————————
    Claude Provost Rocked!

  72. Sportfan says:

    First, will the habs make some kind of move to shake things up?

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

  73. habstrinifan says:

    I wanted her too but I think we need someone with enough balls to stand up against these players.

  74. boing007 says:

    He makes less money than they do. He’ll soon go broke.

    Richard R

  75. JohnBellyful says:

    What makes them tougher than ovaries?

  76. Dunboyne Mike says:

    I know quite a number of women with better “balls” than many men.
    (Alas, none of them coaches hockey….)


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