About last night …

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Dominated at the Bell Centre by a team fighting for a wild-card playoff spot, lucky to salvage a point, your Montreal Canadiens took to the ice 24 hours later against a team that sits atop the Eastern Conference standings.
With Carey Price nursing a mysterious lower-body injury – groin? knee? – Peter Budaj had to play both ends of a back-to-back.
And when the back-up goaltender let in two soft, short-side goals in Pittsburgh, how many fans looked at the upcoming California trip and pondered the possibility of our heroes tumbling out of a playoff spot by mid-March?
Oh we of little faith!

In their first two games coming out of the Olympic break, the Canadiens took three of a possible four points.

It wasn’t pretty.

At times, the games against Detroit and Pittsburgh were downright ugly.

But they found a way. And when the dust had settled, the Canadiens were in second place in the Atlantic Division.

This should be cause for celebration in Montreal and among the Canadiens’ far-flung community of fans.

It isn’t.

Yes, the Canadiens beat the Penguins in their own barn.

No, the win did not soothe fan anxieties. And the game raised more questions than it answered.

The most ominous: What the heck is going on with P.K. Subban?

The reigning Norris Trophy laureate came back all smiles from Sochi. He played limited minutes in only one game for Team Canada, but P.K. assured everyone – including RDS’s Pierre Houde, in an interview telecast before the Thursday night game – that it was a great learning experience and he was just glad his team won.

Maybe P.K. was trumpeting that party line in Pittsburgh after he spent Overtime nailed to the bench, watching Douglas Murray and Jarred Tinordi.

During regulation time, P.K. was on for three Pittsburgh goals – including the Brandon Sutter shorty that was a direct consequence of Subban coughing the puck up at the Pittsburgh blueline and making hardly any effort to get back and correct his error.

Subban had six minutes less ice time than Andrei Markov in Pittsburgh. He also played less than Josh Gorges and Alexei Emelin.

Among the Canadiens’ defence corps, only Murray and Tinordi had fewer minutes.

When asked about Subban during his postgame press conference, Michel Therrien said: “Il n’est pas dans son match.”

Roughly translated: “He wasn’t on his game.”

Wednesday wasn’t his night either. Subban’s penalty for embellishment deprived the Canadiens of a power-play in OT against Detroit.

With his hometown team coming to the Bell Centre Saturday night, P.K. will be looking for redemption. In a game almost as crazy as the one in Pittsburgh, the Leafs lost in Overtime on Long Island. But they’re only two points behind the Canadiens, and the Saturday game will be huge.

The Canadiens’ most gifted skater will have to bring his A-game against Toronto – especially if Price is still nursing whatever ails him.

Let’s hope the coach steps it up a notch as well.

Subban had company on the bench for the Overtime in Pittsburgh.

Therrien didn’t use Daniel Brière, whose nine minutes of ice time in regulation produced two goals an an assist.

And as was the case against Detroit, Alex Galchenyuk – a key element of the team’s future  – spent the OT on the bench … while Brian Gionta and Lars Eller each got two shifts.

Eller was in the penalty box when Olli Maatta gave Pittsburgh a 3-2 lead that lasted 57 seconds. Held off the scoresheet again, Eller has four points in 31 games and, as a punishment for his penalty, found himself on the fourth line centring Travis Moen and George Parros as Brière moved up between Rene Borque and Dale Weise.

In Game 61 of the schedule, Therrien is still looking for line combinations that deliver with some minimal consistency.

DD’s linemates, Max Pacioretty and Brendan Gallagher, had 11 of the Canadiens’ 29 shots on Marc-André Fleury. And Galchenyuk had some decent chemistry with Tomas Plekanec and Brian Gionta – although the kid played less than 12 minutes.

With Ryan White and Brandon Prust out of the lineup, the bottom six forwards were a grab bag that delivered neither scoring chances nor physical play.

Bottom line, though: Three of four points – without Carey Price.

 

648 Comments

  1. Maritime Ronn says:

    With trade deadline approaching, what do the good folks of HIO believe the Habs will do?
    ——————
    From here, there’s a belief that the Habs will make ZERO trades unless completely overwhelmed, which most likely will not happen.

    The Habs are solidly in a playoff spot and that won’t change in the next 2 games before the deadline.

    They will not “Sell”…even if the Markov contract demands are outlandish.
    The Habs realistically have until July 1st to sign him, even though teams can actually begin to speak with pending UFAs on June 25th.
    Moving Markov and his 25+ minutes will only weaken the team and send the wrong message to the dressing room.

    Will the Habs be ‘Buyers’?
    No contending team will move a roster player (Toffoli-Stewart) at this point in the season.

    Non-contending teams will move their pending UFAs/spare parts and will want draft picks and/or ready to play prospects.
    This is what GM Bergevin said he would NOT do at this stage of the Habs organizational development.

    So what does that leave?
    Don’t be surprised if the Habs remain as they are and stand pat – then look towards the summer to actually make a ‘hockey trade’ and chase a few UFAs where the price of players or other assets is nil. ( Prust-Murray)

    Perhaps Prust could help chasing the present Rangers Captain Ryan Callahan, using his secret weapon partner….

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      I have a feeling Bergevin is itching to do something. He’s feeling the heat a little. He knows that the public ain’t too impressed with the Briere and Parros signings last summer and are indifferent about a couple other moves.

      Odds are that not much happens as the Habs are in a playoff spot and playing decent hockey. I think it will annoy Bergevin though to just let a guy like Ginota walk for nothing. You’d have to think something could happen there?

      Markov loves Montreal and he is playing well. I can see a two-year-deal getting done this summer before July 1st. If not I’d be quite happy with a 1st round pick and a good prospect at the deadline. It might suck a bit at first and make our playoffs a tad “more” disappointing this year but would probably be a good idea for the future.

    • Thomas Le Fan says:

      Markov is a very good d-man … period. If we are contending, we need him. If we are not, he could bring something very valuable in return. If you’re Mark Bergevin, your thinking is along these lines, I imagine.

      Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

    • habsguru says:

      i think you are right about very little movement, though it is a frightening thought to end the season without 79 and 76 signed to a contract.

  2. CHicoHab says:

    Won’t lose any sleep if we said see you later to. Eller, Gionta, Briere, Bourque,Moen,Boullion,Parros,

  3. habs001 says:

    Will be interesting if the Habs take extra players on the road trip..They will be in California on trade day and if they trade 2-3 roster players that day the odds are the players they get back will not make it by game time…The odds are minimal or no moves by the Habs…

  4. Habfan17 says:

    If Buffalo would make the trade, would you send Tinordi and Gorges for Myers and a 4th round pick?

    Habfan17

  5. JF says:

    Daniel Brière deserves a lot of credit for the way he’s handling what is being a difficult season. From the start, it seems that Therrien did not have a clear idea of how to use him. From the press box to the fourth line, Brière has been shunted around all season with different line-mates from game to game, sometimes playing as little as three or four minutes. Yet he has not complained and has managed to produce in situations where it seemed unlikely he would. He has always been a good playoff performer, and it’s possible he’s starting to heat up. I’d like to see Therrien give him more responsibility and more ice-time, especially in overtime.

    On a completely unrelated topic, I’m starting to question the received idea that David Desharnais is not a top-two centre in the NHL and in fact has no place on the team. He’s too small, too soft, and too easily pushed off the puck. Our top three centres should be Plekanec, Eller, and Galchenyuk. So runs the argument.

    There is obviously nothing to be done about Desharnais’s size, but I don’t really see him being pushed off the puck all that easily, and he has improved both his foot-speed and his faceoff ability in the last couple of years. Since emerging from the slump he was mired in at the start of the season, he has been perhaps our most consistent forward and certainly the one with the most vision and creativity. Meanwhile, Eller has regressed to the point where I would not call him a top-three centre right now. He’s good defensively but has completely stopped producing, and he often takes bad penalties. He also fails to display a lot of vision with the puck, often hanging onto it too long or making bad decisions with it. To the argument that Desharnais is given preferential treatment and that Eller would do as well with the same amount of ice-time, I answer that Desharnais has earned his ice-time and that there is nothing in Eller’s play since the New Year to suggest he would be capable of filling Desharnais’s role. Is it possible that Marc Bergevin did not after all commit a gigantic blunder in signing Desharnais to that four-year contract last spring?

    • habs001 says:

      As i been saying for years there is no historical evidence prior to the NHL that Eller can be a scorer..Posters here base it on a couple of short scoring streak that he has had in the NHL that most players have had..He does some things well but he is poor in the scoring zones on the ice when he has an opportunity to score or set up scoring chances… DD 809 points in his junior and pro career..Eller 286 points…i know different leagues and games but i believe if you experience offense it helps you when scoring chances come up…

  6. Habfan17 says:

    Let’s change things up a bit and get away from the Therrien talk as well as the Eller vs DD talk.

    Just for fun;
    Trade Price, Bourque and Gorges to Vancouver for Luongo (Vancouver retains half his salary), Edler and Kessler.

    That should lighten things up around here!

    Habfan17

  7. Maritime Ronn says:

    @ mattyleg

    Re Habs line combos.

    This may have been the comprehensive site you were looking for

    http://www.cs.unb.ca/~mwf/habs/

  8. shiram says:

    Are the Habs having trouble scoring goals because they lack the talent and the coach has to have them play a safe style of hockey?

    Or is the team having trouble scoring because the coach has them play a safe style of hockey, that might stifle they offensive creativeness?

    • Mattyleg says:

      I don’t think we struggle scoring goals, I think we can’t both score goals and play defensively responsibly.

      We either seem to be involved in a goalfest, or a tight-collar one-to-two goal game.

      The challenge is to be able to defend but also be effective offensively. That may be a coaching shortcoming, but I’m not smart enough to figure out how to get the two to work.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • shiram says:

        I do think the Habs struggle to score goals.
        They were near top of the league for a while this season, but they are creeping down the standings, and are at 20th right now.

        The question was framed in the context of our best forwards all heading for a disastrous season production wise.

    • Habfan17 says:

      I go with choice B!

      Habfan17

  9. Alex says:

    I am lucky enough to be going to the game tomorrow night. My friend invited me earlier this week, taking the train and going to (hopefully) see the Habs beat the Leafs! I feel rather lucky this year. Have been to more games than normal, having seen the Leafs v Habs in Toronto earlier, Sens v Habs twice this season, and now a second Leafs v Habs this weekend. So far we have won one and lost two while I’ve attended this season, let’s hope we even that record up.

    It will also be my first time seeing a game at the Bell centre! Very excited, I hear the hot dogs are the best. Anything else I should know?

    • secretdragonfly says:

      Congratulations, seeing the Habs play at the Bell is an unforgettable experience. The hot dogs are great (although not as good as Forum dogs, oops, showing my age) and the beer is overpriced. You might want to quench your thirst before/after the game at one of the fine local establishments – Hurley’s and Ye Olde Orchard come to mind.

    • BriPro says:

      Bring your own beer, unless you don’t mind taking out a second mortgage for an oversized can of Molson Ex.

    • monmick says:

      I wish I had friends like that…

      ~~~> Mathematically eliminated…

    • CJ says:

      Lucky guy! The Bell Centre is awesome. My wife and I usually eat at the Baton Rouge on de la montange, which is basically within 500 ft of the main entrance. We almost always have a beer or three at ye ole orchard pub, which is also a short walk from the Bell Centre. Inside, I too like the hotdogs and/or smoked meat. Beer is the most expensive in the entire league, so I wouldn’t try and quench your thirst there. Sightlines are very good and the seating is more up and down, which makes you feel like you are on top of the play. The lower bowl (reds) is almost twice the size of Ottawa. Montreal has double letters AA-FF, so if your tickets are in row W, you are going to be almost 40 rows from the ice. Don’t let that be a downer, as those are some of the best seats in the building. My seats are section 118, which is in the corner of the visiting team’s end, so you see Montreal shoot twice. The scoreboard is the second biggest and clearest I have seen (Tampa is very big) and the sound system is the best I have experienced. The lighting is the best. The concourses are among the most narrow and if you are sitting up high or in the Club Desjardins, taking the stairs down can be time consuming.

      Enjoy. Best building in terms of overall fan experience in the league IMO.

      • BriPro says:

        CJ, I read below about the number of games you golf per year.
        The good old days of having a golf budget are gone.
        And now, since you’re rubbing salt in my proverbial wound, I’m not posting or making reference to golfing anymore.

        I might just not talk to you anymore.

      • Alex says:

        I am fortunate to be getting a free ride for tickets and transportation, so I’ll be lucky to have some extra to spend on beer at the Bell Centre. It was 15 dollars a beer at the ACC when I went, I can’t imagine anything much worse than that!

        I have to say the thing I am most looking forward to is the atmosphere. In Ottawa you usually get a majority Habs feeling, but I have heard from my Father that there is nothing like seeing a game in Montreal.

  10. DipsyDoodler says:

    OK last food related post ever.

    I would guess the only thing everyone on this site can agree on (now that Pierre Gauthier has left H I/O – yes, you read correctly, he used to be a contributor here, and I know his username) is that everything deep fried is good.

    Well if you are in Montreal, head over to Dinette Triple Crown.

    Southern style fried chicken, with all the requisite sides. Good selection of bourbons.

    Can’t recommend it highly enough.

  11. BrownHabFan says:

    Even though we’ve got a good regular season record what do you folks think think it would take make this team an actual contender….realistically I feel really bad for carey price being stuck in his prime with some players past their prime…it’s going to take atleast 2-3 years to lose these bad contracts…and build new team chemistry with a new coach lol

    “I couldn’t really hear the words that Jeremy was saying because I got my 2 stanley cup rings plug in my ear”
    Patrick Roy

  12. secretdragonfly says:

    Well, my fellow Hab & hockey enthusiasts, as of tomorrow I will be somewhere on a sunny beach in Cuba, drinking mojitos and trying not to think about the games next week, as I will be nowhere near the internet. The fact that I will miss all the trade drama, handwringing and breast-beating is a bit of silver lining; I’ll just have to read all about it when I get back. Hasta luego, muchachos y muchachas!

  13. DipsyDoodler says:

    While eating my delicious lunch at my computer I went over to EOTP to see what they thought. Wow. They’re even angrier than us. AB’s entire online life on twitter and on EOTP is an endless rant about the incompetence of Canadien’s management. Everything bad is the result of this axis of incompetence that is headed by Therrien and Bergevin.

    The funny thing is the first post after AB’s post is, and I’m not kidding, “From your lips to Molson’s ears.”

    Yes. Geoff Molson, multimillionaire businessman, is looking for advice from an angry obsessive graduate student who constantly disparages his organization.

    Maybe AB has tips on how to brew beer too. I’m sure the Molson corp would be all-ears.

  14. IamShepherd says:

    LARS ELLER???

    I’d like to know who is Lars Eller’s position coach? Life coach? The man clearly isn’t playing up to his full potential. I believe he could be a first line center. I think you lacks direction. At this point I believe it is mostly a mental block. He is far to mature now to be playing the way he is.

    Any thoughts??

    • habsguru says:

      he needs to enroll in the “better person” program.

    • bwoar says:

      I think you’ve got unrealistic expectations, my friend… er… internet stranger. He was never, ever projected to be a 1st line guy and he’s pretty much living up to his billing from the 2007 draft.

      • IamShepherd says:

        That’s an opinion. Neither was Gallagher.

        Eller has the skill. Did you not see his 4 goal game a few years back or was it last year? Any who, I believe if you make the NHL, you have the skill to make a top line. What you need is the state of mind, proper direction and strong work ethic. I think he is lacking direction. He is lacking the right state of mind. That’s my point…

        ‘All men are created equal…some work harder in preseason.’ – Emmitt Smith

  15. Maritime Ronn says:

    Mattyleg says:
    February 28, 2014 at 11:55 am Hey, does anyone have that link with the list of all the line combinations that have played together for the Habs this season?
    ———
    try this – it gives all the teams

    http://www.leftwinglock.com/line-combinations/

  16. Habs_101 says:

    I wonder if there is any way Ottawa would let the habs take Michalek at the deadline… he has an expiring contract and honestly if they lose 1-2 more games before the deadline I can definitely see Eugene Melnyk telling Murray to start selling assests. I wonder if we could give up a mid range prospect and 2nd or 3rd to try him out for the rest of the season, if he looks good he could be a nice fit;

    Patches – DD – Briere
    Gally – Eller – Gally (REALLY want to see this back together)
    Michalek – Plekanec – Gionta
    Prust – White – Wiese
    Moen/Parros/Bournival/Borque (THE HABS HAVE A SERIOUS NEED TO DROP A FEW BODIES WHEN HEALTHY!!)

    GO HABS GO!

    • CJ says:

      I watch a lot of Sens games both on television and in person. I would steer very clear of Michalek. He can still score with that quick release, but his skating has really fallen since his knee injuries and he is often banged up. Just a cautionary note. He might prove effective yet – he has the size, but there is a reason Ottawa would be willing to let go of a player, in his prime years, with size and a goal scoring history. Injuries.

      Otherwise, given their cap situation, it would be a no brainer to resign him.

      • monmick says:

        Michalek has picked up his game leading up to the Olympics (and I think he played well there too) but I am not sure whether it is sustainable. Could be worth the risk as a cheap rental with a contender with injuries or looking for depth…

        ~~~> Mathematically eliminated…

        • CJ says:

          I think someone is either going to hit a home run or strike out by signing this guy. If he is healthy, he can still bury the puck. He just seems a step behind now. Like I said, there is no reason Ottawa should give up on him, so them passing is a fairly damming indictment. Just my two cents.

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      Bourque > Eller

      Patch DD Briere
      Bourque Galchenyuk Gallagher
      Eller Plekanec Gionta

  17. Ron says:

    Bourni at practice (non contact jersey). Price not on ice.

  18. Kooch7800 says:

    Price is back tomorrow….word on the street. Awesome

    “Lets Go Canada”

  19. habs_54321 says:

    if you look close enough at the:

    20 of the Hottest Wags to Pose for the SI Swimsuit Edition
    FROM THE WEB

    link above you can definetly see a nipple, just sayin!

  20. Mattyleg says:

    Hey, does anyone have that link with the list of all the line combinations that have played together for the Habs this season?

    I can’t find it and I found it very informative.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  21. krob1000 says:

    OK so the healthy body count in MOntreal is officially out of control….
    If healthy and this is before any deadline moves…the Habs would have 5 forward lines plus of arguably NHl ready players

    Chcuky-Pleks-Gio
    pathc-dd-Gally
    bourque-eller-briere
    bournival-white-weise
    moen-prust-parros
    leblanc-Thomas

    so who goes?

    • shiram says:

      Bourque plus one of Moen/Prust.

      • BriPro says:

        Prust? Really?
        I’d rather trade Eller.
        He gives the illusion that he hasn’t reached his potential, which should be a good selling point to the other GMs in the league.

        This of course, is as a direct result of the comments I’m gauging from all of the couch-GMs on this site.

        • shiram says:

          I got nothing against Prust, in fact I wanted the Habs to sign him when he was a UFA, but he might command more value than Moen.
          If someone is willing to overpay for him, I’d be all over it.
          He’s also on a big cap hit for his play, and his history of shoulder injuries is more worrisome than Gio’s, if you ask me.
          And we got a lot of 4th line players already.

          I would not be opposed to moving Eller, but I’m not so sure his value is all that great at this moment, and we’d need another C that can take a defensive assignment.

        • krob1000 says:

          HEre is the irony…last year until Eller wen tdown…he and Bourque were the two best Habs at the end of teh season and in the playoffs… everyone’s other favourite whipping boy Briere hasn;t got many points but hey have almost all been clutch and his reputation is as a plyoff guy. So that leads us to still ask…who goes? Eller and Bourque are two of the bigger bodied forwards on the team and Briere may be slotted in as next years Gionta. It is quite the puzzle and could go in a bunch of diff’t directions. Moen is one of the teams most reliable defensvie players…and he has value…do Weise and Prust make him tradeable? the playoffs are probably where he is of most value

          • shiram says:

            Yup, that’s why I did not go too in depth, it gets too complicated and we don’t have enough info to make valid guesses.

            I just went me logic with a bit of bias…

          • BriPro says:

            You guys are absolutely right, both of you.
            It is a conundrum.
            I’d even go as far as to say that Parros had a good outing last night, given his limited minutes.
            I agree that Eller was far more dominant last year before going down.
            Is he gun-shy? His admission this year to therapy should have no bearing on discussions because that’s a personal thing, but for me it speaks of his delicate balance (or lack of).
            No question, the kid has talent, and maybe it is just a question of line adjustments, or reinserting the EGG line.
            But his play since late fall has not been very good. Yes he’s a hustler, and yes he’s a big body, and yes he can move opposing players, but once he gets the puck this year, there’s no fluidity, no calm or proper play-making.
            He dumps it, and more often than not, there’s nobody to receive it. He holds onto the puck far too long, and can’t close the play.
            Maybe he just needs a little one-on-one mentoring.

          • Mr_MacDougall says:

            It should be made less complicated. If Patch and DD are long term line mates they are a second line, and need a player similar to Cole (I’d like to see Bourque on RW with those two). In my opinion the team needs to plan for a Galchenyuk centred first line going into next season, we all know Plek struggles on the PP and is a fine PK’r and could make a hell of a 3rd line center.

          • BriPro says:

            I would agree with you Mac (can I call you Mac?), but Plek is too important to be relegated to 3rd line duties.
            Your adding Bourque with Max and DD is interesting. It all depends on which Bourque shows up to play.
            We don’t need him hindering their current productivity.

  22. IamShepherd says:

    Boone,

    Please start being more optimistic. Although well thought out, your blogs are mostly negative. Always pointing to the ‘draw backs’.

    What the HABS need is postive energy right now. Can you stop being so pessimistic after every game? They earned 3 out of a possible 4 points on a back to back without their superstar goaltender after having a two week break and a few tired jet lagged players. Who cares about how Subban played? The fact is, he is also a superstar but just young. Any other team in this league would have him, without a question. I am a true die hard HABS fan and ALWAYS will stand by my boyz.

    The only way we will win another cup is if we change our thoughts collectively. PERIOD….

    • D Mex says:

      Like many here, I have been watching his posts for quite a while (note : I used to read them) and have come to the conclusion that the man is fully incapable of constructive criticism where the Habs are concerned. Forget positivity.

      He continues to draw a paycheque from the Gazette, so you’d have to guess he thinks the schtick works. Frankly, it was like a breath of fresh around here to have him off working his ‘ magic ‘ with Postmedia during the Olympics.

      Hopefully, Stu Cowan and others will read your comments today, and make note of the message. Valid post IMO.

      ALWAYS Habs -
      D Mex

    • bwoar says:

      It’s the crappy hash out there these days maybe? Also, the man’s naturally cranky. You gotta take him with a spoonful of sugar.

  23. habsguru says:

    bench him, don’t bench him… PK vs MT…… who was right, who was wrong….. blah blah blah

    here’s the thing:

    I’m sure the guys on the team are getting sick of the drama, no matter who’s camp they are in. either tired of PK being PK, or MT constantly (CONSTANTLY) benching, yelling, pleading, telling other people to yell, answering the “better person” hotline phone…

    if fans are sick of it, imagine it going on while you are trying to play pro hockey.

    something has to give

    • Mattyleg says:

      I’m sure the guys on the team don’t care about what the coach does to one player.

      We’re the ones who make the drama, not them.

      Do you really think that Gorges was sitting on the bench in overtime going “OMG, Therrien still hasn’t put PK out there… this is serious shnizz! I can’t take this drama!”

      The only thing that has to give is some people, and what they have to give is ‘up on the soap operas’.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • D Mex says:

        I disagree. This brand of distraction is OK in the short term, but it runs counter to championship team building in the long-term.

        Your reference to ‘ soap opera ‘ is on point in my view. It can be argued that teams in markets that pay less attention to their NHL teams can withstand this longer, or perhaps ‘ easier ‘, than the crown jewel of the NHL.

        Something has to give – couldn’t agree more.

        ALWAYS Habs -
        D Mex

        • Mattyleg says:

          Come on, D.

          You say ‘this brand of distraction’ as though it’s a real thing.

          The only people ‘distracted’ by how much or how little Therrien plays PK are certain fans. I can’t buy that Murray is fretting at home over PK’s icetime.

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • D Mex says:

            And again, I disagree.

            These athletes are not unintelligent – they see what goes on (much more than the fans you refer to) and observe how it is handled. They watch for results, and form opinions.

            Subban is one player, albeit with huge talent. When you consider players like Béliveau, Gretzky, Lemieux and others, I think it can be argued that the off-ice behaviours, including impact and energy around their teams, contributed to their greatness.

            Some around here hail Subban as a next Captain – I think it would be a huge mistake. Nothing, and nobody, is bigger than the team. Don’t take my word for it – ask Patrick Roy. Subban is showing us that he still has a ways to go in many areas of the pro game IMO.

            ALWAYS Habs -
            D Mex

    • bwoar says:

      I think there’s 1000% more drama here than in the locker room. It’s way overblown on message boards and only a small, natural part of every locker room.

      • Mattyleg says:

        Message boards are funny places, because it takes all day to have a conversation that would take 5 minutes in a bar, which means that people get unnecesarily entrenched and put-upon, which blows things out of proportion.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

  24. HabinBurlington says:

    If this guys injuries are finally behind him, I think this would be the goalie I would go after if I were the Blues.

    http://www.cbssports.com/nhl/eye-on-hockey/24460354/nhl-rumors-hurricanes-open-to-moving-g-cam-ward

    • bwoar says:

      I didn’t realize until just now that both Justin Peters and Anton Khudobin are 27. Carolina is a weird team, period.

    • CJ says:

      I think that Ward could put them in a position to win a Cup. Their potential first (LA) and second (Chicago) round match up would be the toughest they face.

      Ward is a great option and certainly a big upgrade over either Halak or Elliot.

  25. bwoar says:

    Is it still okay to like Eller and not feel like he’s become a useless glob? Cause I think the idea of trading him is pretty dumb.

    I think all 3 centres – Plekanec, DD, Eller have a place until Galchenyuk is ready. I’d play the kid a ton of minutes, but not at centre. He’ll never be a centre winning 35% of his draws.

    Eller still wins battles. He’s got gifts that complement his teammates’ skills and he’s pretty much turn into what was advertised – 10-15 goals a year, some assists but solid 2-way. I remember when he was drafted and nothing about his game suggested he’d be a scorer at the top levels. If he can be a 25 point guy playing poor hockey with inconsistent linemates, good for him. I’d love to see him become a 35-40 point 3rd line centre. If he keeps his faceoff stats at or better than his current 52% then that would make him a perfect fit for the role. You can point to his -8. But I will direct you to Galchenyuk’s -7 and really these guys are still improving.

    The Habs don’t actually need Eller to rise further than that. I think last year gave people the wrong impression that the sky was the limit for the kid and that his natural limitations were more fluid than they are. I imagine he gets re-signed with a raise to 2M a year, which he deserves considering he plays the same (but tougher) minutes than DD or Gallagher. He’ll never be Plekanec, but he’ll always be bigger than Plekanec.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Did you miss the Eller vs DD discussion yesterday? Very similar questions were posed.

      • bwoar says:

        Missed it Burly, been busy taking care of loved ones. I’m sure the arguments are all the same from last month. I dislike the “vs” part of those discussions since I see room for both guys on the team. Lots of dumping on Eller (especially by the pundits) and I think 90% of it’s hogwash. The kid’s a keeper and is filling a role we haven’t properly addressed since we tried putting a young Plekanec at centre for a few games.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          It was a good civil discussion with humour. It’s on the About Last Night thread from the Detroit game.

        • Mattyleg says:

          I don’t like the vs. idea either.

          I was talking about Eller yesterday, and others kept shoehorning DD into the conversation and criticising him. I didn’t really get it.

          I agree that it’s better to have a bunch of effective centres than not enough, and it’s up to the player to show where they slot in on the team.

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • BriPro says:

      Then call me dumb.
      Because 2 points in 20 games (one goal, one assist) will rarely give you 10-15 goals/year.

  26. DMAN says:

    Elite Prospects confirm that Andrei Makrov has been traded!!!!!!!

  27. DipsyDoodler says:

    I love PK. I was ready to lead the posse to get Babcock and the other cocks for not using him. He’s going to have his number up in those rafters one day.

    But that was a bad game. Not just the OT goal, but he was also responsible for Deryk Engelland’s goal. (Does that family have spelling problems or what, by the way?). He’s been on the ice for an awfullot of goals against lately.

    I think Therrien benched him because he wanted to win the game, not to teach him a lesson.

    He’ll turn it around don’t worry.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      In the months leading up to the Olympics he gave away the puck several times, some late in the 3rd, that resulted in scoring chances and goals.

      And ya, he’ll turn it around for sure.

      At this point in time, I think Babcock was 100% correct to dress the defence he did during the Olympics.

      Subban will be a starter in 2018.

  28. D Mex says:

    TSN with a short update today on rumours that Kesler has asked for a move out of Vancouver. Kesler comments ” false “.
    Video then shifts to Roberto Luongo, who deadpans : ‘ whether he wants to go or stay, he’s not going anywhere … we all know how the script ends.’
    Seems he’s a guy to help keep thing loose in the room, something the Canucks need more and more as time goes on. Luongo’a a card.

    ALWAYS Habs -
    D Mex

  29. WindsorHab-10 says:

    What’s the update on White & Prust? What’s the injury? What happened during Olympic break?

  30. GL says:

    If the Habs play good “D” tomorrow night they will come away with 2-points if they don’t Leafs will come away with the 2-points IMO that will be the difference.

  31. CJ says:

    Well, what more can be said. Lots of great posts today, so I thank the commentariat for that.

    I think I would have an easier time adding an addition to our house using my son’s play tools then I would possibly trying to figure out the 2013-2014 Montreal Canadiens. Every fibre in my being tells me that this team is not ready to win at the next level (in the playoffs), when checking is tighter and the referees suddenly call the game differently. We hold a trump card in our hand with Price, but how far can you ride a hot goaltender if the team can not create consistent offence in front of him?

    So, caught between a rock and hard place, I try and put the pieces together. Are we a player away from being a legit contender? No, I don’t think so. Nor do I think we are going to be golfing in April. I guess what I’m trying to say is, in this crazy world of sports you just don’t know. I personally think that we are a house of cards sometimes and that to win at the next level your best positional player (PK) needs to carry the mail, which IMO, he has has not been able to do over the past two months. That said, the house of cards has not yet tumbled.

    Bergevin and company are obvioulsy much more in tune with the team then I am and certainly know the business better. What they do, or don’t do, should give us an indication of how they view the current composition of players. I think we have done very well to squeeze what’s left out of Murray. I am not so sure I would want to rush to extend the veteran, but he has been a solid presence on the third pair. Tinordi I am very pleased with. Confidence is so vital to anyone’s success. He is rushing the puck and unafraid to try and make a play. He is not wreckless, but I don’t see him constantly icing the puck like Bouilion and Diaz did when on the third pairing. I don’t know if that point has been raised and truthfully I don’t have stats to back it up, but we really don’t seem to ice it as often as we did.

    Speaking of confidence, allow me to end with a quick hit on PK. I see a young man who outwardly excudes confidence all day, every day, but on the inside (and I am only guessing) must be totally confused. He does not seem as sure of himself and is making careless errors. Now, maybe the truth is he has always made these same errors, but it has been masked by his offense. Now that he is not producing the way he was, perhaps it is becoming more evident that there are significant flaws in his game. A few of my friends are Sens fans, and it has taken them three years to come to this realization with Erik Karlsson. In Ottawa, the sun rises and sets on this young man, but truth is, he makes more errors during a game then any other two players combined. He also creates more chances and by extension more goals then any other two players combined. I guess that is the uniqueness of the talent we have in both cities.

    I wish everyone well today and look forward to talking habs prospects this evening with anyone who is around. Take note, London Knights are televised on sportsnet this evening, so we will have a chance to see Mike McCarron in action.

    Have a great day everyone! Cheers, CJ

  32. frontenac1 says:

    So ,with Orr and McLaren out of the lineup last night,Gleason decides to take on Bolton? Not good amigos.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YPwJnWjXuMk#t=34

  33. HabinBurlington says:

    @Matty, Habfan10912 and any others interested. Here is some prep work for our first Ell-Anon meeting.

    http://www.wikihow.com/Make-an-Enviable-Secret-Handshake

  34. Thomas Le Fan says:

    On the other hand, it wasn’t a 1-0 snoozefest. I liked the goals and the result. In order, for 11 goals to be scored, mistakes have to be made on both sides. In the end, it was fun and I sincerely doubt P.K. could have that bad a game again, if he tried. Maybe he got it out of his system. After all, he’s only, what … 24? When he hits 25, so do we! Go Habs!

    Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

  35. Mr_MacDougall says:

    I am baffled by people’s assurance that Eller will be a top 6 player if given the opportunity. I just do not see it, he rarely makes intelligent plays.. He has speed, size, and effort.. But I think he lacks the top end skill of a top 2 center. Eller is improving on face offs, and could become a solid 3rd line center.. Poor mans Jordan Staal…

    • Thomas Le Fan says:

      He’s playing very hesitantly, that’s for sure. Did his injury last year have a lasting affect on his play? If he’s not going to score 20 goals a season, with his size, he needs to be grittier. We don’t need two Bourque-like underachievers, that’s also for sure.

      Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

    • Strummer says:

      Give him top 6 wingers for 5-10 games and we will see.

      ______________________________________________________
      “It’s just an opinion- I could be wrong”

    • WindsorHab-10 says:

      I see it if and only if we get the right personnel behind the bench.

  36. Marcusman says:

    So do you start Budaj…or Tokarski against the Leafs?

    How oftetn have we seen a rookie get their 1st start against us and shut us out…..the kid is a winner.

  37. GL says:

    Off Season Keepers:

    Pacioretty, Galchenyuk, Gallagher, 1st line
    ????????? Plekanec ?????????? 2nd line
    ????????? Desharnais ????????? 3rd line
    ????????? ????????? Weise 4th line

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Everyone keeps debating on our centres but we are really short 2 real top six wingers. I would keep White as your 4th line centrel. Sign another enforcer to be the 13th. You are missing Eller on there as well.

      Third line I would have Bournival with Bourque

      Prust White and Weise as the 4th

      “Lets Go Canada”

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        I’d have Plek as my 3rd line Center, Eller and Bourque as wingers.

        Galchenyuk – DD – Gallagher – Patch top six and add 2 top six wingers. Briere will be one of those if he is t moved.. Use Gionta $$ to pick up,somebody.. I’d go after Gaborik if he’d do 4-5 years.

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      UFA Players I’d be interested in.. Heatly (pretty much another Bourque) Gaborik (despite inconsistency Kovalev has shown us how important talent is) Morrow/Doan, Orpik, Giordano,

      I could see this:
      Patch – DD – UFA
      UFA – Galchenyuk – Gallagher
      Bourque – Plek – UFA
      Prust – Eller – Parros

      • 24 Cups says:

        Mac – Funny how we all see things. I’m not interested in any of those guys considering the price you would have to pay. Is Doan an UFA again?

        • Mr_MacDougall says:

          Those guys don’t excite me, but there’s something that intrigues me about aging Canadian veterans with size. Considering DD and Patch are signed for 3 and 4 more years respectively, and will be playing together, a right winger with size and scoring touch is needed to compliment those two like Erik Cole did. Heatley is big and has scoring touch and definitely lacks enthusiasm and determination it seems.. Maybe Rene Bourque is similar to Heatley at this point and at a much cheaper price.

          The reason Gaborik interests me is for building a line around Galchenyuk at center that will be the teams number 1 PP unit. Gaborik is a proven PP threat which is something the team drastically needs up front. Gionta makes 5+ and if it costs 7 to get Gaborik at 4 years (though he’ll likely want 7) I’d go,for it.

  38. nova scotia vees says:

    Well here I go again. I believe that Therrien has destroyed PK’s confidence. He tries to cover-up with false bravado, but he is a mess inside. I have coached highschool and university athletes for over 30 years, and confidence is crucial.
    And to the guy who says PK should just dump in the puck all the time. Yeah right! Orr, Park, Serge Savard, Coffey, Bourque, Robinson, and these days, Daughty are all creative. Is there risk involed? Yes..but thank God for creativity..who wants to watch a bunch of Georges’

  39. Ian Cobb says:

    Unbelievable! What is this team all about, I just really don’t know anymore.!
    Two games and somehow we take 3 of 4 points!
    We are all over the map trying to put players together that will complement each other, we turn the puck over time and time again, we are not winning enough face offs, back up goal tender gives up some soft goals, Norris trophy winner looks more like Chuck Norris, we are going through some injury set backs and the coach looks like he is ready to through in the towel.!

    How is it possible that we take 3 out of 4 points???
    Toronto Saturday night for a 4 point game and a possible play off spot up for grabs.!!
    I just wonder what type of a team will show up for this one!

  40. Commandant says:

    On the Sutter goal, lets be clear.

    I’m not absolving PK here. He made a stupid mistake and he deserves to be criticized for it. I probably wouldn’t have benched him as much as MT did, but thats a whole different conversation.

    However, Therrien also needs to take some of the blame. Subban was at the end of a 2 and a half minute shift. Subban drew the penalty on Malkin’s slash at the end of his shift. He then stayed on the ice for the PP. At about the 1:00 mark of the PP, the draw was in the pittsburgh zone and subban was stalling for time, taking a slow skate out near the redline. The Penguins announcers were noting that Therrien needed to get subban off or take a time out, the kid was gassed. Therrien didn’t. He plays another thirty seconds, makes a stupid play, and we get scored on.

    This isn’t to say Subban made the right play, he didn’t. But a goal is rarely the fault of one person, and Therrien wears some goat horns here too for not seeing what everyone else saw. PK was exhausted before the goal.

    Go Habs Go!

    http://lastwordonsports.com/

    • krob1000 says:

      That is on both PK and MT then as I was not aware of that. MT is at fault for having PK out there…however, if PK is that gassed what in the world is he doing not dumping it in at that point?

      I am not a fan at all of the PK and Mrakov pairing for teh entire 2 min’s…I think it has taken the life out of any second unit and I am not convinced teat they are any better with the two of them on there than they would if Markov quarterbacked one half and Pk the other. With Beaulieu nearly ready and with Briere having a ton of pp experience on the point it would be nice to see them go that route.

    • mdp2011 says:

      PK made a bone head decision. I think everyone needs to stop trying to point the blame at MT. If he was gassed, then he should not have tried to make an end to end rush. He should of just dumped the puck in the zone and got off. People were complaining that he doesn’t get enough ice time, so MT gives him the ice time and now people are complaining about it.

      • Commandant says:

        PK did make a bone head decision. And I’m not taking any of the blame away from PK on that decision. My post is not to try and make PK look better. He made a mistake and paid the price, rightly so.

        My post is merely to point out that there is a second mistake as well, one that is being overlooked. I’m not absolving PK.

        Go Habs Go!

        http://lastwordonsports.com/

    • habsguru says:

      good call C

    • D Man says:

      Also, Briere’s lazy pass to the point hung out Subban to dry but P.K.’s penalty was for roughing after the fact. I didn’t think it really was roughing just an extra shove but it was unnecessary and a bad play.

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

    • Just a Habs Fan says:

      Commanant..do you also acknowledge that MT get some of the credit for the goals that are scored ? You know the posters that post on PK aren’t really looking at him and his playing…they are caught up in his quick moves and the way he almost gets through the other teams defense……watch and notice he almost never gets through on his rushes….we are starved so much for that superstar player that we don’t shake the emotional connection. PK needs to adjust to the team concept…….he is not doing that lately for sure. He is a selfish dude and it costs the team not helps.

  41. GGtheHab says:

    On the train heading to Mtl for the leafs game. Was looking forward to reading some happy posts considering the 3/4 points collected. Instead more of the same old doom and gloom about MT, PK, etc. why can’t we chillax and enjoy 2nd place? We will wake up ahead of the leafs Sunday morning regardless of the outcome of Sats game. The main point of discussion should be how severe is Carey’s injury, and how awesome Gallagher has been.

  42. Et le but says:

    Thrilled about last night’s improbable victory against the Pens.

    I think we caught a break with the 5 minute major against Tanner Glass; replays showing that he didn’t hit Emelin in the head as the principle point of contact. Some might even say it was a phantom call. We score on the ensuing PP and win it in the shootout.

    Emelin has not been the same since a game against Philly on December 12, where he was assessed a five minute major for a play against Steve Downie; replays once again showing that it was a phantom call.

    I can only hope that as the beneficiary of a questionable call himself last night, Emelin shakes whatever lingering bouts of non-confidence that have plagued him since the Philly game and returns to form, cause this team is much, much better with him in the lineup and playing his game.

    Interesting also to note that he played a good game last night, one of only the handful of good ones over the last 2 1/2 months and that Parros was in the lineup. Coincidence? Hmmmm… discuss

  43. 24 Cups says:

    So with just two or three games left before the deadline, who’s selling and who’s buying? Might be a tough call for some teams such as Ottawa.

    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/standings/?show=conference

  44. Sportfan says:

    So have they cleared the 92 car pile up?

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

  45. Habitoban says:

    Anyone know what happened to Bourque last night? It looked like he got clipped with a stick and left the ice for the room, but not before trashing his helmet. I’m not sure he returned, although hard to tell with the shortened bench.

  46. Sportfan says:

    Lol didn’t Boone say the other day there was no way we were going into OT against the Pens? :P

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

  47. L Elle says:

    PK is only 24. D men take a lot longer to mature than forwards. Too much over emphasis on mistakes. It is quite normal, even for a super talent.

    Having said that, there is the danger that he is taking the Ovechkinian route of doing things all on his own, and not thinking Team.

    We all say the same thing about Ovie, “Ya can’t win with him.”

    Not sure if this is a coaching issue, or a leadership issue. I’m thinking if there was a Larry Robinson type player in the room, who would only have to look straight into PK’s eyeballs to get the message across, this would benefit PK tremendously.

    PK is a great and skilled player. Whatever message is being given to him, is not being received.

    Is the message giver the problem, or is it PK?

    • Sportfan says:

      When Hal Gill retires we should get him back to work with PK, or I dunno Larry Robinson.

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

    • stevieray says:

      It think the message is clear …the problem is PK is not listening which isn’t helping his cause.

    • New says:

      Part of the issue is that PK is only hitting 6 feet. He is solid and works hard to have the muscle he needs. You watch the team so you know he is falling a lot lately. Falling on turns that 2 years ago he cut with ease. His agility isn’t what it should be. Glancing over his shoulder throws him off balance. Now it could be a lot of things but I suspect his issues are centered on bad training for “hockey” and loving his press releases. He can not do what he believes he can do, but if he goes for agility instead of bulk he won’t survive on D with his chirpy rough and tumble approach. The option is to learn to play within his self-imposed limitations or continue to watch games from the stands and handle media inquiries. He isn’t going to grow into his bulk so he has to grow into his game.

  48. Steeltown Hab says:

    Pacioretty – Eller – Desharnais
    Bourque – Galchenyuk – Gallagher
    Bournival – Plekanec – Gionta

    ———————————

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

  49. Ron says:

    Good for Jaro Spacek, he was named assistant coach of the Czech national team.

  50. rhino514 says:

    It´s funny so many people on here say how Therrien´s record has more to do with the fact he has a real good team, but when MT is not the subject of discussion most people are saying how the team is at best just an average team with a good goaltender.

  51. Ali says:

    Great rant by Melnick yesterday about Therrien’s use of Galchenyuk. The rumbling of discontent is growing…

    • Cal says:

      Like Habs management listens to Melnick. Especially with his, what, 4k listeners?

    • JUST ME says:

      When someone from the media thinks that an athlete , a coach or a G.M. owes him an explanation or a move , there is a real problem. His rant was basic and far fetched. When you compare Tavares situation in Long Islang with Crosby `s in Pitt or Galchenyuk`s in MTL you need to explain the context otherwise this is an amateurish and cheap rant.

    • JUST ME says:

      The rumbling is growing in people`s head and they think that the Habs read , care or listen to what they think or write. So so wrong !

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Sports radio?

      People realize there’s other stuff in the world, right?

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I used to listen to Melnick a great deal. I kind of thought he lost my respect when he became so one sided in his championing that fellow media member for the role of GM for the Habs.

      He is very good and talented, perhaps I need to get over that and start listening a bit more to him again.

      • Cal says:

        Too much Expos talk for a team that no longer exists. I’ve resorted to listening to my old cassettes in my jalopy. TSN690 is just soooo bad I can’t take it.

        • BriPro says:

          Sorry Cal, but I disagree.
          For one, they’re the only english sports channel in Montreal.
          Two, you have to remember that they’re trying to fill the airwaves, and IMO he’s one of the best at it.
          Did he get the rant wrong yesterday. I don’t know …. I missed it.
          But who’s right all the time?
          He’s very well informed as are the morning guys.
          I’d rather listen to that, than most of the negative news out there these days.

          The one I can’t stand is buffoon Marinaro. He’s constantly tweeting his own horn. Re-tweets anyone who passes him a compliment.
          And if he sings one more opera song (“sing” is stretching it), I think I’m gonna p*ke!

      • Love his segment, listen to him everyday. Love his taste in music, and his thoughts are similar to mine on almost all subjects. Not to mention he’s just a great guy overall.

        Shane Oliver
        Twitter @Sholi2000
        http://www.Sholi2000.com
        Custom Sports Figures
        Congrats Carey Price and PK Subban, Montreal’s Gold Medal Members!

  52. DipsyDoodler says:

    And another thing.

    How can you not love David Desharnais?

    WTF is wrong with you people?

    The little guy is awesome.

    Did you see how he ended up in the net after his shootout goal?

    Come on!

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Saw that, was hilarious how easily he fit in the net!

    • krob1000 says:

      The thing I liked most aobut him was the play where he nearly turned teh pcuk over but outskated the PEns guy down the boards to retrieve the puck. He impressed me witht hat burst of speed. He is always good in the shootouts…makes me wish he would drive the net like that more often like Gallagher. I have nothing against Dd other than I don’t believe he is the best optiona s the guy witht he best linemates and pp time. Galchenyuk should be on the pp in tat playmaking role IMO. Glachenyuk is also the hardest passer I have ever seen and the only two guys ont he enitre team capable of converting those passes both play with DD. I knew DD would score in the shootout…he is very good in the shootouts and the play he made with Patches was a very good one.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        He made a couple tape to tape rocket passes through traffic on the 5 min PP. The biggest failure of this season has been the use of Galchenyuk.

        Galchenyuk needs experience and it’s not like the team has stronger options at center on the PP. Plek has struggled on the PP his entire career, he’s not about to turn it around now.

    • knob says:

      You know the arguments so I am assuming that you are just stirring the pot.

  53. Bill H says:

    Eller will be a solid second line centre. He hasn’t been given the opportunity to prove it by giving him the wingers he needs.

    The team has an overabundance of centres – Desharnais, Eller, Galchenyuk. Pleks, White.

    I think the solution is to trade Desharnais in the off season. He’s small, but MB should be able to get something for him from a team without the same size issues as the Canadiens. He has now proven that his break out year was not a fluke.

    Galchenyuk, Eller, Pleks, White down the middle is a step in the right direction. Unfortunately, Desharnais is an important part of the French character of the team. So I don’t think he will be traded.

    • JUST ME says:

      That makes sense ! Trade the only guy that makes his teammates better and deserves his paycheck . ! Brilliant !

      • Bill H says:

        Thanks for your very respectful response.

        I think, as many do here, that the team needs to get bigger and grittier. Davey has certainly been playing well, since his extended slump at the beginning.

        I think Eller has more potential than Desharnais. There are diverse opinions here. Mine is but one.

        • JUST ME says:

          Apologies if i ruffled your feathers but your second answer just make my point stronger. We all like Eller (maybe because we gave up a very lovable Halak for him ). He is big strong but never did prove anything consistent with the habs when we know D.D. will show up every game. The begining of the year slump is the only serious one known for D.D. Can we say the same thing with Eller ? I think we see Eller like we would like him to be wich he is not.

          It is a very rare quality for a player to make his teammates better. D.D. has that and it is valuable in a team that badly needs real skills and potential.

          • Bill H says:

            Well stated. Thanks for your thoughts. Its true that Eller has a lot to prove. DD is playing much better these days.

  54. Thomas Le Fan says:

    Okay, I didn’t agree when Therrien benched Subban last month, thinking his mistake was one of enthusiasm, but man he played a brutal game last night. Is the “Subban is a defensive liability” meme taking effect in his head?
    Then again, seeing what Detroit did to Ottawa last night and seeing as how Pittsburgh is leading the east, maybe we should be pretty happy with three points and move on.

    Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

  55. habsguru says:

    so tired of the garbage. if you can’t work with PK, and he is a “problem” or “isn’t on his game”…..

    trade him.

    he is a stud Dman in the league, any other team would love to have him. if you want him to do the forwards job, then don’t cry when he loses the puck. it’s not PK’s fault that his team can’t chip and chase.

    I love how the media is just killing PK for that turn over. GUESS WHAT? that is a set play drawn up by THE COACHES. “overcoaching” is rampant throughout minor hockey, and now the NHL, and even Team Canada. the CREATIVITY has been taken out of the hands of the players, and they have been asked to be good soldiers and play the system.

    If you don’t have a D capable of breaking the blue line in a structured play, then come up with another play.

    PIT read that play, and made a great break up. PIT’s coaches saw that coming from a mile away, and probably had it broken down pre game.

    • sane hockey fan says:

      that is a set play drawn up by THE COACHES

      Didnt know you had access to their playbook…

      • habsguru says:

        If you need a playbook to pick up on a play that they have been using commonly for the last 6-8 weeks, you probably shouldn’t be criticizing. i picked up on it around the Dallas game in early January, and I DON”T claim to know even 1% of what an NHL coach does.

    • Stimpy007 says:

      Dont trade him!!!

      But I’m with ya. Let him loose! Release the PKrackin!!

      You have to be ok with the odd turn over. I cant stand that he doesnt throw those hits anymore. Let him be who he is.

  56. DipsyDoodler says:

    Dietary fibre and alcohol.

    Use both sparingly and you will be a very happy camper.

    Use either one excessively and you will be a grouch.

    Continue to use them excessively and you will end up in the emergency room.

    Complaining about the hockey team should be thought of in the same way. Once in a while to keep yourself calm and nubile. But no more than that.

  57. mrgordon says:

    What does HIO land think of going after Dmitry Kulikov? It’s a name I don’t see here, though I don’t read everything and never really post. Anyway, I think he could be a good fit plus he’s an RFA so he would not be a one and done rental. His rights could become a tradable asset, or if things with Subban or Markov aren’t promising he could be a cheaper option with high upside when we have Beaulieu and Tinordi as close to ready as can be.

    I’m not at all sure what Tallon would expect for Kulikov. Kulikov was an amazing player in Jr. and has experienced ups and downs at the NHL level playing in Florida.

    I’ve always been a fan of his game and think an ‘unexpected’ move snagging a guy like this could be the kind of ‘slick’ trade that can significantly improve our team in the here and now. Now, the price could be asinine, but if not I’m sure we have some pieces that could make it work.

  58. punkster says:

    Do you really believe MT’s 59-39-11 record is entirely due to his coaching talents?

    Is it not possible that some of those wins had to do with the talent of the players despite the failures of the coach?

    Or that some of those losses were the result of poor coaching decisions despite the attempts of talented players to win?

    Has MT displayed any capability to develop the latent talents of his young players, of adjusting to the opposition in game situations, of providing the required leadership beyond benching some of the guilty while giving others a free pass to continually f up?

    Dead man walking.

    Dump DD…
    Play Larry and Chucky 20+ minutes per game…
    Go full Breezer.

    • Ron says:

      Dave, I’ve never been a fan of MT. This goes back as far as his coaching days in the AHL here in NB at Fredericton. His 1st kick at the cat with the Habs was a mess and although we are looking good in the standings something just does not seem right to me with him. I agree with your points mentioned re: did they win dispite him and lose because of his decisions. The stat points are there though.

    • sane hockey fan says:

      Do you really believe MT’s 59-39-11 record is entirely due to his players talents?

      Is it not possible that some of those wins had to do with the talent of the coach despite the failures of the players?

      Or that some of those losses were the result of poor player decisions despite the attempts of the coach to win?

    • mdp2011 says:

      No I don’t believe that the record is all on MT and yes it is possible some of those wins are because of the talent. But you can say that about 95% of the coaches in the league. The fact is, he took a team that finished last in the East and made the playoffs his first year and has them sitting currently in 2nd place.

    • 2mins4lookinsooogood says:

      Oddly enough, in the bi-polar world of HIO, you can have both a lousy coach and terrible (small) players and still have a record of 59-39-11 since the lockout :-)

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

  59. shiram says:

    Everyone of our top 9 players are headed for bad seasons points wise, some career worst even.
    Pleky is on pace for 45 points.
    Gio for 40.
    Eller 27.
    Bourque 13.
    Brière 28, though this might be considered a success given the time and role he’s been given.
    Chucky and Gally are both behind last years’s production.
    Max on pace for 53 points
    DD on pace for 44 points.

    If it were not for Price/Budaj, the team would not be where it sits in the standings right now.
    And you have to wonder what a year like this is doing for the mental state of the players.

    I’m still holding out for Subban to be a better person/player as Therrien said he would do.

    • BriPro says:

      You raise some good points Shiram.
      I can (I think) provide some counter-arguments for at least a few of the players.

      Gally and Chucky… the league knows them now. The kids are more closely scrutinized and followed.

      Gio is getting old in the tooth. I believe his best days are behind him, but his heart is still there. Case in point: he was the best forward against Detroit (the only one who showed up).

      Pleks has always been a see-saw case. I’ve never seen a player on the Habs roster (and I’ve watched many a Stanley Cup team… and since) being shuffled from one wingman to another, without ever complaining. And since he’s always paired against the opposing team’s top-performing line, it’s no surprise.

      Max (and by extension DD) had a very slow start. It took several games for them to get it rolling. But I would suggest, since DD scored the shoot-out goal against Columbus, that their PPG is as high or higher than last year’s.

      Bourque ….. Brière ….. Eller … those three are head-scratchers, and in my opinion, anchors up front. Although I agree with you that Brière isn’t in MT’s favourites black book and hence doesn’t get the same amount of ice time. Sometimes, I wonder why. His game seems to be coming together. He’s definitely more comfortable than he was. I think it’s time that MT kept him on one of the two top lines, at C instead of Eller, and let’s see if he can continue his production.

      I think both Eller and PK are more insecure than they let on. There are some issues between the ears there. Yesterday I commented that I don’t know where Eller is going. I don’t think he knows either. I’m on the fence. It’s obvious that he tries hard, but so does the Eveready Bunny, in no particular direction. If he keeps passing or dumping his passes to nobody, something will have to be done.

      • shiram says:

        Heh, well then where is the no excuses attitude?
        Bah I don’t know really, I’m just annoyed at the team, I wish they had more offense, that the lineup did not look as shaky as it does, that we’d have some sort of stability as it relates to lines.

        I just think Therrien is an awful coach, even with the teams record.
        They play a really boring style, they don’t go out for the win in the 3rd if it’s tied, they play it safe for the one point.

        And with players stalled in their development well, I don’t know where to find positive stuff anymore really.
        Budaj and Price I guess? Max is having a great year goal scoring wise too…

        • BriPro says:

          So is it that MT is teaching this boring style, or is it because he realizes that they don’t have any stallions and he’s making them play the most appropriate way to their abilities?

          Yes, they often play a boring game. And the game against the wings was just God awful (reminded me of the Islanders game at the beginning of the year), but heck, they’re in 2nd place. I would have never wagered that when the season started.

          • shiram says:

            They might have the stallions if they opened up the game a little, as I said all of our top 9 is in line for awful season production wise.
            They all did better before!
            They can do better than they are doing now.

        • mrgordon says:

          I think too many people overstate the importance of the regular season, and more particularly single games and stretches of games. Keep in mind I’m not really interested in the semantical discourse on the actual logistics of what I said (because yes, you need to win to get to the playoffs etc). But everything gets reset in the playoffs, you have an opponent and a fresh start if you are lucky enough to be there.

          I really don’t think players are thinking things like “man, If I didn’t have to play that 23 minutes on Dec 17th, I’d have a lot more in the tank” or “man if I hit that 55 pt plateau I could do a lot better right now”.

          In reality, the playoffs are a combination of skill, will, momentum, and lady luck. If anything, having not only one, but two goalies who can steal us games and/or regular season points bodes well for playoff success, as ‘crapshoot’ as the playoffs are as is.

          Look at the LA Kings a couple of years ago, they barely squeaked in and were outright unbeatable when everything went their way. They played a great brand of playoff hockey and got exceptional goaltending. They undoubtedly had players playing above their regular season level of play.

          there are teams in the East who are easy to look at and say “we can’t beat them in a 7 game series”, but of course that would be totally false because you need to play the games to find out.

          We really just kind of have to hope that the regular season first of all, gives us a chance to reset and play playoff hockey. and that second of all, the culmination of ups and downs during the regular season results in a good string of successful hockey in round 1 and just hope it keeps rolling.

          I think we have an average, deep defence corp, and exceptional goaltending. We have, probably, a below average crop of forwards. but when the games get tighter in the postseason players like Prust and Moen become more invaluable in my opinion. The team has more sandpaper than it did 1 season ago, and we just gotta hope that law of averages brings the production of some of our under performing forwards goes up.

    • Hstands4Hockey says:

      Ya Budaj really stole that game last night..

      ——————————————————————–
      Rule #76: No Excuses, Play Like a Champion!
      @Hstands4Hockey

    • mrgordon says:

      I think too many people overstate the importance of the regular season, and more particularly single games and stretches of games. Keep in mind I’m not really interested in the semantical discourse on the actual logistics of what I said (because yes, you need to win to get to the playoffs etc). But everything gets reset in the playoffs, you have an opponent and a fresh start if you are lucky enough to be there.

      I really don’t think players are thinking things like “man, If I didn’t have to play that 23 minutes on Dec 17th, I’d have a lot more in the tank” or “man if I hit that 55 pt plateau I could do a lot better right now”.

      In reality, the playoffs are a combination of skill, will, momentum, and lady luck. If anything, having not only one, but two goalies who can steal us games and/or regular season points bodes well for playoff success, as ‘crapshoot’ as the playoffs are as is.

      Look at the LA Kings a couple of years ago, they barely squeaked in and were outright unbeatable when everything went their way. They played a great brand of playoff hockey and got exceptional goaltending. They undoubtedly had players playing above their regular season level of play.

      there are teams in the East who are easy to look at and say “we can’t beat them in a 7 game series”, but of course that would be totally false because you need to play the games to find out.

      We really just kind of have to hope that the regular season first of all, gives us a chance to reset and play playoff hockey. and that second of all, the culmination of ups and downs during the regular season results in a good string of successful hockey in round 1 and just hope it keeps rolling.

      I think we have an average, deep defence corp, and exceptional goaltending. We have, probably, a below average crop of forwards. but when the games get tighter in the postseason players like Prust and Moen become more invaluable in my opinion. The team has more sandpaper than it did 1 season ago, and we just gotta hope that law of averages brings the production of some of our under performing forwards goes up.

      Patience, patience, patience….

  60. JUST ME says:

    Legacies…

    We often read comments about how in the good old days…Can`t blame them cause even the organization dwelled on the stars from the past to stir up the passion in MTL even though we all know that this era will never come back.

    But for the sake of argument let`s just take the words of a few Habs from our past and notice how clever they were and unfortunately how things are still the same.

    When i listen to TSN or read a few comments here and there i wonder if mister Gainey could tell us if they are still among us the gutless bs…

    Who was it, Sam Pollock who said that the best way to start losing is to listen to the fans ? He was brilliant in his time and oh so relevant in 2014 !!!

    Patrice Brisebois once said it`s only hockey. Means get over it people !

    Carey Price told us to chill out. Breath through the 2 small holes in your nose ,take a deep breath from time to time and things will get better.

    If not then Jacques Laperriere told us to take 2 anacins when we had a bad and lingering headache (french tv commercial.)

    Stephane Richer said wisely that there is life outside hockey.

    Jacques Lemaire said he left MTL cause he could not stand to have to explain every decision he took and every move he did not make. Reminds you of something ?

    Guy Carbonneau said that one day the thruth would be known…

    I guess i could go on and on cause this is what getting experienced (old) does to you but what i have learned is to let go and move forward . The grey hair will come without me having to force them.

    Tomorrow Leafs time !

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I’m still waiting for the truth that Guy promised us. :)

      Good post but its easier said then done for most of us, eh?

    • New says:

      The team panders to the crowd. They do not have to be successful on the ice to be as financially successful as possible. That is why that stupid torch thingy with Briere was done at the start of the season.

      The Canadiens are an investment, a really good investment, and the NHL is a business. Media is a business. The standings are a business. (3 of 4 points…yeah and the opposition took 3 of 4 points too…fantastic business model)

      The thing to do is chill. Relax. PK Subban can’t play defense…so what. He was built for the media and fans by the media and fans with the full support of the Club.

      It is only a game. Your wallet is the prize.

  61. docketrocket says:

    PK and Eller are both fantastic assets now and for the future. They are both under-performing badly. I do not agree Eller is playing badly now. He is very strong on the boards, good in the faceoff circle, and fast. If he only pans out as a third line center, he is a good one.

    The best thing management can do for this team is to fix whatever is wrong with both of them to maximize their potential. The upside of that is greater than any likely outcome in a trade, free agent signing, or cap relieving. MB should give it his full attention. Maybe the problem is MT, maybe it can’t be fixed. But this is the difference between a playoff run and another embarrassment. Let’s do what it takes.

  62. olegpetrov says:

    Would love to know what is going on in PK’s head right now. Seems like he has regressed to the over-egotistical Subban that we saw a few years ago. For some reason he has trouble reading the play as to when to dump the puck in and carry it across. Hopefully the benching will smarten him up. Markov and Budaj should also give him a smack.

    Habs fan…Nuff said

    • krob1000 says:

      On that play I think there is some confusion….the team tends to want PK to gain the line quite often…but if that is the case they cannot all be at the blueline standing still. However, he has the puck and has to realize that is they are all there and noone is behind him he must dump it for fear of what happened. That was bad recognition and just bad positioing in general by everyone. …..but he could have bailed everyone out and should have.

  63. Steeltown Hab says:

    What line up down the Middle do you think has a better shot at winning a cup?

    A) Desharnais – Galchenyuk – Plekanec
    or
    B) Galchenyuk – Eller – Plekanec

    ———————————

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

  64. D Man says:

    I agree with Therrien’s decision to bench Subban in the overtime. He had played poorly and turned the puck over several times with risky decision making. He hasn’t been playing well at all lately. Why? Well I read lots of explanations here on this site usually blaming Therrien. But, Subban is ultimately responsible for his own performance. OK, have at me.
    You can’t be both a Habs and a Leafs fan

    • Steeltown Hab says:

      Why doesn’t Gorges ever can’t benched for failing to clear the zone on simple play after simple play?

      If Subban gives you the best chance to win you ice him. They actually double shifted Murray in OT at one point. But they won so this isn’t a dumb move?

      ———————————

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

      • Mattyleg says:

        I imagine that it has to do with Gorges doing many things correctly that you don’t see.

        Also, trying to make the right play and failing is much better than trying to make a bad play and failing.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • Habfan10912 says:

        I understand your frustration Steel but I really think last night was more if a teaching moment then a hissy fit frim MT. Message was dent and I’m guessing recieved as well. Hopefully it starts Saturday night..

      • sane hockey fan says:

        Lol. I dont think I’ve ever seen Gorges carry the puck up the ice, try a dipsy do move, lose the puck at the opponent blue line and not even try to back-check leading to a short handed goal. That’s why.

        • Steeltown Hab says:

          Gorges sucks, guarantee half the guys in that room can’t stand him trying to yell cliches when he’s a big part of the problem, handles the puck like a grenade in his own zone.

          ———————————

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

      • D Man says:

        I knew somebody’s reply would refer to the play of someone else and why aren’t they benched. But as I stated, Subban is responsible for his own play. Several noticeable turnovers last night merited a benching in overtime.

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

        • Steeltown Hab says:

          Subban is the only guy who gets that treatment, that’s the issue. “No excuses” only applies to subban. When it comes to DD, it’s put Gallagher with him too and give him more PP time.

          ———————————

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

          • D Mex says:

            Subban is currently the only Habs skater labelled ” best player on the team.” The additional scrutiny comes with the territory.

            ALWAYS Habs -
            D Mex

  65. jamman says:

    P.K needs to jam on the free wheeling. He needs to simply dump the puck in, change and not try and be a hero. I may be falsely flagged as a troll by but I will say that from a fan stand-point P.K WILL be held more accountable once he’s making 8 million.

  66. Mattyleg says:

    Hey Burly,
    Good post in reply to Luke on the other page, well explained and totally understandable!

    Two things, though:

    I think most coaches are becoming ‘grind out wins’ coaches in this Era Of Parity. Teams can’t afford to try the run-and-gun game with so many similarly-built teams, especially teams without the ‘pure talent’ you see in Chicago, Pitts, etc. It’s not pretty, but I think that hockey as a business needs to be conservative to protect the interests of the investors – a more consistent product over a flashy one. I hate it, but it’s the new Corporate Face of our game, led by Mister Corporate Face himself.

    Secondly, I don’t think it’s fair to say that all teams get injuries with reference to our spate of injuries right at the outset of playoff time last year. To lose Eller (our most productive player at the time), Gionta, Price, etc… all at the beginning of the playoffs is not something that all teams have to deal with. And I don’t think that it’s something that any coach would be able to deal with either!

    As I said, though, a good post.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Luke says:

      Hey Burly,

      I replied too:

      “Oh, I know you are being honest.

      That’s why it may just simply be a matter of simply “not liking him.”

      I don’t like Stamkos. And I couldn’t explain why. He’s awesome at hockey. But bleh… don’t like him.

      I’m just super indifferent to MT. And I really like Gerard Gallant. Again, I couldn’t explain why. Its not like I’ve met the guy.

      Coaches are coaches. In all but the most rare examples, 3 years and gone.

      I agree with your assessment of him. Transition coach for a team in transition.”

    • HabinBurlington says:

      CHeers Matty and Luke.

      Matty did you really compliment Eller? :)

  67. Hobie Hansen says:

    I really enjoyed that bottom paring of Murray and Tinordi last night! In my books that’s what a prototypical 3rd pairing should look like!

    They both killed some penalties and both ended up even on the night! They threw some hits and roughed up some Pens.

    So much better than Bouillon and Diaz or the other crap we’ve had to put up with!

    Good job boys!

  68. WindsorHab-10 says:

    I might get grilled for this but I think Daniel Briere has been terribly mishandled by this coaching staff. Seems like he can do nothing right. He has been a good teammate, accepts any role given to him, produces when given a chance & then gets kicked in the grapes & benched when the game is on the line.

    As for PK, he’s trying to do everything himself and it times it bites him in the rear like that shorthanded giveaway last night. Coughing up the puck was not my issue, his lack of hustle afterwards definitely was. Still his benching in OT did not make much sense. I agree with most posters that say let him be. Mistakes are part of the game & you learn as you go. Just seeing him sitting at the end of the bench in OT did not seem right.

  69. krob1000 says:

    Here is a serious question re PK and Markov.
    Markov is a calming influence ..playing same minutes and more important ones than PK. Markov is still capable of running a PP…yes he is older but he is still far more trusted than PK. So let’s talk contract.
    PK over last 19 games is -9 with 1 goal and 5 assists. He has made glaring errors and is looking lost. He is on the brink of perhaps signing what many believed would be the biggest contract in Habs history…however, one now seriously has to question the value here.

    He is the reigning Norris trophy winner….he is a dman leading his team in socring…yet at the same time he is not in synch and hasn’t been for a quarter of the season. What is his value? Everyone immediately says 8 million for 8 years….that has to be being questioned right now…and if he is worth 8 million then what is Markov worth? They have been pretty well neck and neck most of the season and many try to say Markov is only worth 5 million and should only get 1 or 2 years? Markov is an established veteran with a long track record of success. His health is no longer an issue as he has actually one of the longer consecutive game streaks around right now.

    This is a situation that many are avoiding or are just making assumptions about. MB will throw Molsons wallet at PK..but they have to seriously be considering the long term implications…..I hate to say it but PK’s play is making me think they should be offering closer to 7 million and I don’t know that PK will go for that after the bridge deal…..we may have a situation coming…a very serious one.

    There is no doubt PK is an elite dman in my mind….but Dion Phaneuf is an elite dman as well…but the contract he has and the occasional brain cramps draw the ire of the fan base and many question the value. I fear PK may turn into that if he signs the monster deal…..his every move will even that much more scrutinized if he signs a cap crippling contract. I believe he wants to win…in which case him signing for around 7 makes more sense and gives more wiggle room to the team. The fact the teams top scorer makes 4.5 and perhaps the best goalie in the world right now took 6.5 also makes it very uncomfortable if PK goes and signs for 8 million for several years. I am not sure how that would go over. Yet, there will be huge pressure from PK from the NHLPA and his agent tomax things out….gonna be messier than people think I am guessing.

    • CJ says:

      There is no doubt in my mind. If PK signs for 8 years at $8 million per season, anyone who is not a Canadiens fan will ridicule the decision in the same manner in which we ridiculed the decision to sign Dion to a long-term deal for $7 million.

      When assessing PK, you still need to consider the larger body of work. That said, he play this past two months has been worrisome. He and Price are our best players. Anytime your best player(s) are not playing the best, the team generally struggles. The fact that we are 6-1-2 in our past nine games is a testament to the team and in spite of PK, not because of PK.

      This model can achieve short-term success, however if we want to win at the next level (in the playoffs), when it really counts, PK will need to be at his best.

    • Mattyleg says:

      (but over the last 20 games, PK has 2 goals, 8 assists, and is -6. Over the last 21, he has 3 goals, 9 assists, and is -5)
      ;)

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • krob1000 says:

        HE had a 4pt game vs Dalals…and a 2 pointer befofre that…maybe thinking a little too highly of himself after that? since then he has been nowhere near what is necessary and maybe those two games had something to do with it?
        Whatever the case if we are doing that then Eller ahs over 40 points in his last 85games so what is the problem? The fact is over that time PK has been a shadow of himself and downright dangerous…definitely not 8 million worth of hockey player on a team with Price making 6.5, markov likely making 6 ish and Patches making 4.5….I don’t know how he could sit in the room with them in that case.

        • Mattyleg says:

          Yeah, I get it.
          I don’t accept that Dion Phaneuf is an elite D-man.
          He could have been.
          But ain’t.

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • krob1000 says:

            Elite is an term that measn different things to diff’t people…but he is a no 1 dman and is actually far better than people think. Same with Kessel. As is the case in TO where their fans eat their own in Kessel (best forward) and Phaneuf (best dman)….in Montreal Pathces gets eaten alive but Montreal is very defensive about PK….there is a very good chance he is another Dion Phaneuf…and that is a heck of a hockey player…but not the perennial Norris candidate everyone wants him to be. ON the other hand he could still become that….but it is still up in the air at this point and that is why I don’t think they should go over7 million .

    • Stimpy007 says:

      I dont think it matters what happens from here on out, he is getting 8. If Dion gets 7 then PK is getting 8. Brace yourself cuz its coming.

  70. Commandant says:

    The Habs biggest question at the Trade Deadline, and the move they should not make.

    http://lastwordonsports.com/2014/02/28/markov-habs-biggest-deadline-move-making/

    Go Habs Go!

    http://lastwordonsports.com/

  71. Commandant says:

    Scary stuff for Prospect Mac Bennett. Sounds like he’ll be okay in time though.
    http://www.michigandaily.com/sports/mac-bennett-michigan-injury-wolverines-hockey

    Go Habs Go!

    http://lastwordonsports.com/

  72. frontenac1 says:

    Anyone catch the guys on RDS put up the Roster from Marc Bergevin”s Pee Wee team from Ville Emard? Mario Lemieux had the most points. And Marc wasn’t far behind followed by JJ Daignault.

  73. DipsyDoodler says:

    Didn’t Dion Phaneuf win the Calder and Norris? Or something.

    Anyway as a youngster he looked like the second coming of Larry Robinson.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Never won either.

    • frontenac1 says:

      No, I think he had sex with Sean Avery.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      as a rookie in Calgary he was really good. I think his problem is between his ears. He has the size and all the tools but doesn’t have the same offense anymore. Thankfully he is signed to a big long contract in toronto. I hope he continues to be the pylon he is

      “Lets Go Canada”

      • Mattyleg says:

        I think he fell for the ‘bigger is better’ concept.

        He used to be smaller, leaner, and quicker.
        He looks like he’s been juicing, and has lost all his mobility and speed as a result.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • Kooch7800 says:

          He has filled out quite a bit. He seems to make bad reads on the ice quite a bit as well which reminds me of Souray. If there was going to be a highlight real goal by the other team against the habs Souray was usually on the ice :) Phanuef is the same

          “Lets Go Canada”

          • Mattyleg says:

            Awww….
            I loved Shelly.
            But yeah, who was it that totally undressed him? Spezza?
            Eesh.
            What a feckin’ shot though…

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • Luke says:

            Yah. Spezza. Repeatedly.

            That dude had Souray’s number.

    • CJ says:

      Not a trophy winner but when he was a member of the WJC team at Grand Forks ND, I thought he was going to be the next great thing. He was named the best defencemen during a tournament in which we had arguably the best WJC team ever.

  74. Mattyleg says:

    Ahhh, nothing like a nice, balanced ALN after an exciting victory.

    All we hear is complain, complain, our boys play boring hockey.

    Then we win 6-5 in a shootout and it’s:

    Complain, complain, that game was ugly.
    Complain, complain, should be cause for celebration but isn’t.
    Complain, complain, we’re in second place BUT two teams are two points behind us…

    Great game, great win, 3 points out of 4 with the backup, and in second place.

    …but I guess we all ‘enjoy’ hockey differently, eh?
    ;)

    —Hope Springs Eternal—


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