About last night …

Snow atBell

We love our hockey team in Montreal.
With a contentious and, for a good portion of the population, ominous election looming, fans braved a late-winter snowstorm to welcome their beloved Canadiens back to the Bell Centre.
The white stuff won’t last.
And loyalty to the beloved Canadiens was unshaken by the team’s third straight loss, 4-1 to the hated Bruins.
But as you look at that photo of fans congregating in outside the Bell Centre, ask yourself whether this team will still be playing when the snow melts.
And for how long.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G551bmF4AhA#t=46

Forget the glass-half-full malarkey.

You can’t put a positive spin on the Canadiens’ recent results.

They haven’t won a game in regulation time since before the Olympics.

Their only win on the recent road trip was against Anaheim – which, their lofty point total notwithstanding, lost at home to the Leafs and got smoked in Calgary.

It has been obvious for a couple weeks now that the Canadiens can’t win without Carey Price. And the condition of Team Canada’s gold-medal goaltender is a mystery.

Price has what’s officially described as a lower-body injury. He has not played a game since Sochi, and Price’s return to practice this week has been confined to some light drills with goaltending coach Stéphane Waite.

Informed speculation – if that isn’t an oxymoron – has Price battling a groin injury. The healing process cannot be rushed, and a premature return to action might jeopardize the future of the Canadiens’ most valuable player.

The Canadiens are still six points clear of  ninth-place Detroit. but the Red Wings have two games in hand.

My friends in the Bell Centre pressbox tell me the Canadiens are a lock for the playoffs. Given their cushion and the availability of loser’s points down the stretch, they’ll probably get into the postseason … if only as a wild-card.

But the upcoming schedule is not easy.

Ottawa, desperate for points in pursuit of a playoff spot, visits the Bell Centre Saturday night. The Senators have won two of the teams’ three meetings this season.

On Sunday, the Canadiens play in Buffalo, against a Sabres team that is out of the playoff hunt and loosey-goosey.

Then patrick Roy brings the Avalanche to the Bell Centre next Tuesday night, followed by surging Columbus on Thursday. The Canadiens then visit Toronto on March 22 and Boston on the 24th.

If the Canadiens play like they did for the first 20 minutes against the Bruins, this schedule will be manageable – the more so if Price is available.

But if they play like they did in the second period against Boston …

The Canadiens outshot Boston 14-6 in that first period and 36-32 on the game. They won 62 per cent of the faceoffs. Boston outhit them, but only by a 29-26 margin.

The Bruins blocked 18 shots, to 13 for the Canadiens. And the home team managed to miss the net with 19 shots, to only six misses for Boston.

The latter stat  is, to me, indicative of the Canadiens’ lack of confidence in the offensive zone. The team is not scoring, they’re squeezing their sticks and shots are all over the place.

Exhibit A: Tomas Plekanec, 0 SoG, four misses. His linemate, Brian Gionta, had two shots on Rask and missed the net three times.

Max Pacioretty, by contrast, had six shots on goal to lead both teams. Another three were blocked by white-shirted defenders. Max did not miss the net once.

In the third period, with the game out of reach, Michel Therrien moved Thomas Vanek to the David Desharnais line, with Pacioretty. They produced the only goal, and Vanek was the only Canadien who was plus-1 on the game – a distinction that hardly justified his selection as Third Star.

Brendan Gallagher was reunited with Alex Galchenyuk, who made some pretty plays in the game, and poor Lars Eller, who took yet another penalty and has not been on the scoresheet since Feb. 9.

Of Eller’s 10 goals this season, five were scored in the first five games. We can hope that a reconstituted EGG line might start clicking, but Eller is a mess.

Like Galchenyuk and, recently, P.K. Subban, Eller is not playing as well as he did last season. Their struggles make you wonder about the ability of Therrien and his staff to develop young talent.

Gallagher is the exception, but he’d play well for Barry Melrose.

Not to worry, though. The coach somehow managed to play Francis Bouillon more even-strength minutes than any other Canadiens’ defenceman.

Frankie the Bull was not the home team’s worst defenceman. That dubious distinction belongs to Douglas Murray, who had a grand total of ZERO hits against the Bruins.

Enough already! Bring up Nathan Beaulieu and/or Greg Pateryn.

Ottawa on Saturday.

Be very afraid.

 

 

 

350 Comments

  1. Danno says:

    In the playoffs, you need three things.

    1 – Goatending.

    2- Goaltending

    3 – and Goaltending.

    We can have 12 Vaneks on the team, but if Price doesn’t return in good form it won’t make a whiff of difference. We’ll be doomed.

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
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    • 44har48 says:

      Your best player has to be your goaltender for sure on the Penalty Kill and in the playoffs to go deep, but you also need to be able to play different styles, including a rough and tough style to get through when good coaching has your team bottled up. You simply don’t get the time and space the Habs need in the playoffs to succeed. Well coached teams take that away from Montreal and we can’t score to save our lives.

      This is not the year, I think everyone knows it but hopes for the best.

  2. Paz says:

    I would trade Marois to Russia in a second. We should have unloaded her before the deadline. Putin can give her 4 year contract. We need to rebuild around our youth.

  3. crane says:

    Next 15 games,leave them alone to gell,have fun
    Really lucky a coach,even Marc Crawford at this stage would make me happy.

    Tinordi P.K.
    Markov Pateryn
    Emelin Beaulieu
    Gorges
    Murray,Boullion,Weaver sits forever

    Patches D.D. Vanek
    Gally Eller Gally
    Bournival Plek. Bierre
    Wiese White Prust

    Parros,Moen, Gionta,Bork. sits forever

    • Chris says:

      Tinordi is simply not ready for top-pairing minutes. He is progressing nicely, but he should be protected on the 2nd or (ideally) 3rd pairing while he learns the tendencies of his opponents and adjusts to NHL speed. He has been making pretty egregious gaffes in every game, ranging from mishandling the puck in his own zone to terrible pinches.

      Given that he is such a one-dimensional player (he brings zero offence to the table), he needs to play a clean defensive game to be effective. He isn’t there yet. If you partner him with Subban, he’s getting exposed to the other team’s best forwards, and they will torch him.

      The alternative is to curtail Subban’s minutes (he only played 10:05 and 12:52 of even-strength time with Tinordi in the two games they were partnered) or find him some time with Markov when you need some offence. That leads to a bit of chaos in the pairings, so it is not ideal to be having Subban mixed and matched between lines.

      Gorges is a better NHL defenceman right now than Tinordi, Pateryn, Emelin or Beaulieu. He will not be sitting out behind those four guys.

      • Paz says:

        Chris, I don’t think Therrien minds curtailing Subban’s minutes.

        Subban is no longer playing like an All Star defenceman, any way.

        Therrien must be so proud.

      • Timo says:

        If Bouillon is ready then Tinordi is double ready. Didn’t Therrien played Bouillon the most of all dmen last night?

        • B says:

          Markov led the team in TOI last night.

          Weren’t Bouillon and Subban the only 2 non minus Hab’s D last night? Wasn’t Tinordi a -2 with much less TOI last night?

          –Go Habs Go!–

  4. billylove says:

    While the Blues have moved on after realizing that Halak wasn’t going to take them to the promised land, the Habs still hang on and wait for Eller to “mature.” Looks like that “blockbuster” deal turned out to be a wash. After 275 games in the NHL, Eller is still, Eller. Maybe he needs another 275 to “mature.”

    • BobbySmithWasClutch says:

      I do wonder if the Blues may have seen something questionable or troubling in Eller’s play when they traded him for Halak? Probably not is my guess and he was a just a top prospect and the price they needed to pay for Halak. I think Blues had a lot of good forward prospects at the time, but still, I wonder if there was a negative reason they chose to trade Eller.

  5. 123456 says:

    Unfortunately I did not see the first period maybe I would have a different take.

    First goal – total mistake by JT, nothing Budda could do. I’d like to consider that a fluke.

    Second goal is what irks me the most – Gionta watched and glided and let his man go. No matter the player you must be benched after that. I have been a big Gionta fan but he needs to see a lot less ice.

    After those did it matter – Habs do not have enough offense to score 3 goals.

    I’m not usually a doom and gloom kind of guy but changes are needed.

    I’d start by putting the 6 best forwards on the top two lines then Assemble a solid checking line – these three lines play nearly the entire game.

    E-G-G
    Patch – DD – Vanek

    Gionta and Briere can earn their way onto a scoring line.

    • CJ says:

      The only other thing worth noting is that Montreal had just played their best shift of the second period. They were buzzing in the Bruins end and looked poised to score or at least force Rask to make a difficult save. Emelin gets hit from behind leading to a rush. Looked innocent enough. Lucic, the trailer, lets a shot go from 50 ft and beats Budaj. Instead of possibly 2-1 going into the third, it’s now 3-0. Game, set, match.

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        Weak goal for sure. It wasn’t a huge hit IMO. Emelin had an opportunity to catch Lucic but just floated back and let Lucic blast it.

      • frontenac1 says:

        Hey CJ! I was reading some old posts and you mentioned an Enforcer that used to show up for some the Cornwall games with no gloves? Reminds me of when I was coaching Midget in the Inter City league a few years back. I was allowed 1 over age (18yr old). The first practice he told me he would miss most practices and some games because after school he worked for his brothers moving co. but he said he would make all of the games against the rough teams. Third game into the season (a real goon team)he shows up with these ratty old leather gloves. Im looking at him and the gloves and he says”These are my old man”s gloves coach!” He turns them over and The Palms were cut out! First period he laid a licking on one their goons that was a sight to behold. Saludos!

  6. JohnBellyful says:

    I’ve been around long enough to know that we Canadien fans are a hard bunch to please. Even back in the days when the team was winning championships, there were still those who complained about the Stanley Cup being half-empty.

  7. habsguru says:

    3 minutes of Parros last night would have been a LOT better than whatever Moen was pretending to do.

    • BobbySmithWasClutch says:

      LOL. You’re probably right

    • Mattyleg says:

      How many PP goals did Boston score?
      Moener was great on the PK.
      Parros would not have been.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • CJ says:

      Moen and Murray needed to step up. Sadly, neither did. If neither is stepping up physically, then what value do they have? Neither is creating anything offensively. Both are effective on the PK, but need to compliment that skill set with a physical presence.

      We looked small and ineffective last night up and down the roster. I don’t want to place too much weight on one game, but there is certainly a cause for concern. This concern will turn to sheer panic if they do not sweep the Senators and Sabres this weekend.

    • B says:

      Moen led the forwards short handed with 1:49 on a perfect PK last night against the #3 PP in the league. I don’t think Parros could have done that.

      One of the bright spots for the Habs this season has been their shorthanded play. Only Plekanec up front has more SH TOI and Gorges leads on the back end. They are major players on one of the top PKs in the league yet get slammed here regularly for doing nothing.

      –Go Habs Go!–

  8. CJ says:

    The problem, IMO, is the fact that we are not scoring goals (talk about stating the obvious). We are a preimter team. Aside from Galley we have almost zero net pressence. We need a Dwight King or Jamie McGinn. We got Weise, who seemed to play well for us on a line with White and Bournival, but he has done something to fall out of favor.

    I watched Briere, Gio and Pleks closely last night. None of these guys can get to the net. Together, unless they are using their speed, the unit becomes entirely ineffective. Gionta has built a career on the back of being a hard worker and can not take shifts off. Last night was the worst game I have seen him play this season. When one of your hardest workers takes the night off, there is a significant trickle down effect.

    It is not the exclusive reason for last night’s loss, but our fourth line last night was terrible. I thought White was decent, but Moen and Prust did very little. Prust simply needs to stop fighting. I understand that this is a major part of his game and what he leaned on to get to this point in his career, but his shoulders can no longer take the abuse.

    I hate to oversimplify things, but we are such a different team when we score the first goal. If we don’t get the first one, it seems like there is a 95% chance that we are not going to win. I certainly don’t have the number in front of me, but when you rank as the 29th place team 5×5 scoring, you don’t mount a ton of comebacks. Further, our PP is almost at a disadvantage right now as we have failed to adjust to the coverage our opponents use to blanket PK. Instead of scoring on the PP, we give our opponents momentum following the kill.

    Our goaltending has been exposed. Where Martin Jones was able to carry the weight in Quick’s absence, Budaj has simply not been good enough when it has mattered most. It’s not that I regard him as a poor backup, but we are seeing the difference between predetermined opponets (spot picked) versus consecutive games against quality teams. Unless Price comes back, 100% healthy and on top of his game, goaltending will remain a question mark for the rest of the season. I know that team defence plays a great deal into the success of any goaltender, but Budaj has let in a soft goal in more games then I care to remember.

    Lastly, my attention turns to the coaching staff. I haven’t said too much this season regarding Therien as I know that there is very little appetite for change considering his record, however he needs to be accountable. PK has regressed into a shell of his former self. He should be oozing confidence and leading the team, but instead he is offering very little outside of the slapper from the point. I am pressed to tell you the last time I saw him throw a hit. Anyone who recalls PK during last year’s playoffs would have a difficult time saying that this is the same player. Some of that resides with PK and some of that needs to be shouldered by the coaching staff. As I aluded to yesterday, Bergevin’s biggest flaw might be his reluctance to give up on a player and/or coach.

    Just my two cents….

    • Chris says:

      I suspect Weise is probably not 100%. That skate to the head plus the impact with the boards could very well have left him with a concussion. He played a couple of games, but we haven’t seen him since. I wonder if the symptoms were just late to show up.

      • Mattyleg says:

        Yeah, I got the same feeling.
        There’s no reason to sit him out otherwise. He was very effective for us until his injury, at which point he lost a bit of his hustle and aggressiveness.

        Understandable, really.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • CJ says:

        I suspect you are right Chris. I can’t imagine him sitting unless he is hurt. Not that I wish an injury on any player, but it would at least explain the roster move.

    • Mattyleg says:

      Some very good points, and I pretty much agree with all of it.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

  9. Habanero78 says:

    Hey couldn’t someone get the mayor of Montreal to call out someone on the Habs? It worked last time! :P

  10. Habanero78 says:

    I personally think Parros should be in the line up. Our fourth line isn’t scoring anyways, and everyone seems to have a little more swagger when Parros is in. Parros is -5 but I think the rest of the team scores more when he plays. Makes the other team take notice….

    • frontenac1 says:

      You have a good point amigo. I thought the boys could handle the rough stuff without him but there was no response to Lucy last night. Disappointing.

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        Would have been nice if Murray would have grabbed Lucic and started pounding on him at some point last night.

        • D Mex says:

          Either of his hits from behind on Emelin looked like ample justification to me. Hell, I’m sure a B’s fan would say the same …

          ALWAYS Habs –
          D Mex

        • frontenac1 says:

          Thought the same thing amigo until I realized that it was Tu-74 and Marky who were on the ice against the Lucy line all night.! Another boner by MT.

      • BobbySmithWasClutch says:

        How about one of our forwards forechecking and slamming a Bruins defenseman into the boards with a legal big hit (God forbid)

        • Hobie Hansen says:

          No, No, No Bobby! I don’t think hitting is part of the Corsi or Fenwick stat so it’s not needed!!!

          • BobbySmithWasClutch says:

            Where’s Mario Tremblay, Mike McPhee, Brian Skrudland or Mike Keane when you need them?!

          • Hobie Hansen says:

            Agreed 100% my friend. I wouldn’t mind a like Shayne Corson Vs Milan Lucic action myself.

        • BobbySmithWasClutch says:

          Shayne Corson is one of my favorite all-time players

          • Hobie Hansen says:

            Same here. Boy would I love if the Habs had him in his prime right now. Maybe a couple of super tough heavyweights out there on defence like Lyle Odelein and Stephane Quintal. Instead of Franky Bouillon and Doug Murray. Would love to have those two in the lineup against Boston.

    • BobbySmithWasClutch says:

      Parros is a total liability out there because he’s a lousy hockey player. He also can barely fight effectively anymore

      • boing007 says:

        He helped the Habs score a goal one game this year, while standing in front of the net. Dino Ciccarelli did it all the time and he was half Parros’s size.

        Richard R

  11. habstrinifan says:

    It may be sacrilegious and I really dont mean it. But it might just be the best thing forthe HABS IF Carey Price’s injury were to last long enough that he misses another 5 games or so.

    Therrien’s record (and the HABS) have been largely built on the back of Carey Price this season. Therrien coaches with that in mind.. he depends on shot blocking and Price’s consistency and ability… much more so than he did last year. You only have to read Therrien’s comments re “the best player” on the team…. WHICH IS WHAT PRICE IS OF COURSE!

    But instead of taking that asset and using it to allow for the development of a dynamic and aggressive team with elite outside plays, Therrien has used the best goalie as the starting point for building a minimalistic team and style of play.

    The success of that style is misleading when you have a goalie like Price.

    Simply ask yourself. If Price was letting in 1 more goal a game than he has been.. what would have been the HAB’S RECORD… Where would the HABS be if Price, this season, was Luongo.

    And if that was the case, wouldnt the HABS have had to come up with the initiative and coaching enterprise to BECOME a better team offensively and all around… especially 5 on 5. Wouldnt more ambitious numbers have been set as the benchmarks for our attack.
    Wouldnt the coaches have had to .. well to put it simply… show some brilliance in their job.

    And which do you think would contribute to the betterment of the club and its players and its not so short term future?

  12. jon514 says:

    I think people on this site assign way too much ability to a coach to develop players. Players develop or do not. Coaches can give them ice time and line mates and take it all away, but they cannot put the puck on net for them, they cannot battle for space in the corners and the crease.
    Gallagher should be wearing an ‘A’ next season.

  13. kalevine says:

    I think I read one person mention this but, didn’t Parros dress for the 2 previous wins, and didn’t Lucic behave himself in those.?Yesterday he went out of his way to unload on Emelin, who seems as vulnerable as Gorges these days. He might have been quieter if Parros had been in the lineup.

    Offense is the big problem. The team appears to have no offensive strategy at all, and the appriach seems to lie on soklid goaltending and team defense, neither of which they are getting lately, and opportunistic offense. The opportunism has gone south several times this season to the point where these lengthy periods with almost no goals have become the norm. I bet it’s the worst goal scoring Habs team since the early 2000’s, and it certainly isn’t the team with the least offensive power. I’m not saying they should be up near the top, but they should at least be middle of the pack in 5 on 5 scoring. Something is not working

    • BobbySmithWasClutch says:

      Re: Lucic, maybe slightly but I doubt it. He’s a very good/big/impactful player and just consistently brings his physically intimidating presence to most games he plays.

    • habsguru says:

      i replied below, but you get a second,

      Nailed it.

    • B says:

      I think Boston would love to have seen Parros and/or Murray out there vs Lucic and the Bruins top line. I could see Murray out against them on the PK, but at even strength I don’t think it would be a good match up. I would never want to see Parros on the PK.

      –Go Habs Go!–

  14. songles says:

    The thing about a team that, on paper, looks to be a wild card team, is that, despite various win streaks and such, they will eventually return to the mean — that is, they will lose a bunch of games badly to eventually end up back in a wild card spot. That is where the Habs are headed. It seems that it took a Carey Price injury (which, let’s face it, is just another of the statistical probabilities that make this team mediocre), to send us tumbling back to our rightful place in the standings. The Habs will make the playoffs in exactly the spot everyone predicted they’d be: as a wild card.

  15. adadi says:

    There must be worse teams at developing young talent. Can someone please point them out.

    • jon514 says:

      Edmonton Oilers…

    • Mattyleg says:

      Yeah, we’re terrible.

      PK Subban. What a great example of bad development. He’s been in the NHL, what 3 seasons and he only has ONE Norris trophy? Pfft.
      Brutal youth development.

      Carey Price. Awful goalie! Who cares that he was deemed the best goalie in Canada and won a gold medal? How many Vezinas has he won? NONE.
      Another case in point of pathetic youth development.

      Brendan Gallagher. Ineffective and invisible all the time. Badly managed and improperly played – he’s a 4th-liner but the god-awful management doesn’t know that.

      I’ll let you carry on adadi.
      BTW, have a look below at how accurate you were regarding the dearth of ice-time given to Galchenyuk.

      Don’t let truth or facts get in the way of your endless string of complaints on here today.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

  16. GGtheHab says:

    I have been trying to remain optimistic but it is getting very difficult…need 4 points this weekend or we will be in trouble..

  17. SC-24 says:

    Most of our forwards are average including Galchenyuk. Maybe he hasn’t being given the chance to prove himself, his age, line mates, or it could be a lack of ice time, in any case he’s not star quality as of yet and who knows, could turn out to be a dud. Remember he’s playing for the Habs and a few players has been ruined here.

  18. habsguru says:

    Late chiming in today, here it is:

    by my count, TWICE 74 was pasted from behind, one a clear head shot, by Lucic. no calls, and one resulted in a goal.

    say what you want, but that DID NOT happen when Parros played in the previous games. the rules changed last night, and changed a great 1st period into a sh^% show.

    all posters who cry about Parros being a waste of a roster spot just witnessed why he is needed. the late hits, holding, interference, slashing….. that was all turned up 50 fold last night.

    • adadi says:

      Another great coaching decision of course.

    • SC-24 says:

      habsguru – can’t you see parros is a has been. Lucic would eat him up any player on the Habs for that matter. We need a Gratton.

      • CJ says:

        Yes, a Brian McGratton, Patrick Bordeleau or Luke Gadzic I agree with. As noted below, Parros is finished. If he did fight Lucic, he would be beaten – badly.

        • habsguru says:

          i’ve been posting since he joined, that he is insurance, and keeps guys honest, even from the bench. you can look at his win loss record, which I really don’t care about, but there is no way Lucic would anticipate a fight against Parros. also, even if they did fight, you think it would have been good to have Lucic off the ice for 5 last night?

          • CJ says:

            He was insurance. Nothing about his play now leads me to that same conclusion. Parros today vs Parros in October are two completely different players.

            Orr, then Boulton ended Parros’ effectiveness. It’s a tough game the fighting business. You are king one day and crap the next. Again, it’s not that I didn’t want to see Lucic get pounded last night, nothing short of a win would have been sweeter, but Parros, if he engaged Lucic, would have been destroyed. Sure, Lucic would be in the box for five minutes, but George would likely be hurt – badly.

      • habsguru says:

        look up the penalty summary from the games against Boston that Parros dressed, the check the score.

        • SC-24 says:

          I don’t care if they win every game with parros in the line up. He’s finished as a fighter and some tough Guy is gonna put him out of hockey.

          • CJ says:

            Sad, but entirely true. I actually thought he hit his head during the fight in Anaheim. Keep in mind, he was fighting a third tier fighter. Not a good sign. A guy like Lucic would hurt him bad. I am left to think of the scene in Rocky where Micky lets Rocky that he would be hurt permanently.

    • CJ says:

      I would love to have Parros dress, but he is NOT the same player who we acquired this offseason. If we are talking about a healthy fourth line enforcer who could skate (keep up with the play), hit and fight, I am all for that.

      As much as it pains me to say this, Lucis – not that he should or would fight George – would likely hurt him bad. George can’t even handle the second tier fighters right now. Sorry to be so blunt, but he is damaged goods. If we had Gadzic and kept him in the press box last night, I would agree that we missed an opportunity. That said, regrettably, Parros is but a shell of his former self.

    • kalevine says:

      sorry, just noticed this, I posted just above. It’s not that Lucic and Parros would fight, but somehow Lucic doesn’t take the same liberties when Parros is dressed

  19. desertman says:

    Im not typically a coach hater but I was at the game yesterday and about half way through the first, the bruins 2nd line gets caught on the ice for over a minute and ices the puck. What does Therrien do? He throws out our 4th line!!!

    @!!@%@#%!#%!@#%!%@#

    I went completely ballistic in the stands. Way to not take advantage of a great situation! I am still trying to comprehend what the bajezzzus he was thinking.

    Hes awful and if he throws vanek back with pleks and gio, i might lose it completely.

  20. Marcusman says:

    If i were Therrien….I’d start Eller on a line with the kids…and play them 20 mins a game till he catches fire…I’m sure it;s all in his head…the fear of making a mistake.. MT needs to tell him..go..go like the wind and get this done.

    • adadi says:

      Ask yourselves why Therrien compromised every line to get DD going but will not lift a finger to help Larry?!

      • BobbySmithWasClutch says:

        I agree with your point but do think some of this should fall on Eller himself. It’s not like he’s been on the 4th line.

        • adadi says:

          I agree. He has lost his confidence, but what ha MT done to help him get it back.

          • BobbySmithWasClutch says:

            We don’t necessarily know all that goes on behind the scenes but Eller’s a big boy. When Guy Lafleur was 24 he scored 50+ goals. Gainey was a star defensive forward at 23. I agree Eller hasn’t been supported well but it’s his job to snap out of his funk after a few games, not go into a 45 game confidence slump

          • adadi says:

            BSW, how can you compare a Scotty coached team with a Therrien coached team. Sacrilege. You need to go to a church and ask for repentance.

          • kalevine says:

            is the old forum still there? :)

          • BobbySmithWasClutch says:

            LOL. I know, shame on me, but that was where the bar was set. One possible positive about Eller and how he’s been (not) supported is his lack of production should make for a reasonably low cap-hit on his next contract?

  21. habstrinifan says:

    @ HabinBurlington:

    Good Morning Sir and thanks for the link to Pauline Marois’ delusional take on ‘nationhood.

    I am frothing at the mouth to give my take on a few items posted about last night’s game but , like you, this topic seems more Monty Python fun… just plain hilarity .. as our country seems headed for this crap stuff again. This time I dont think there will be huge caravans to Quebec… this time we would laugh our way to the end I think.

    But just in case Pauline Marois, or maybe PKP, is listeneing I ask they read this article about “Quebec’s debt ‘worryingly high,”

    They can find it at this link…
    http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/quebec-s-debt-worryingly-high-report-says-1.2568355

    I dont know your ultimate stance on our coaching situation. But I state unequivocally.. if anyone this morning thinks that the Mtl Canadiens have great coaching and great systems then I suggest …. you may be as delusional as Pauline Marois.

    Forgive the bluntness!

    • Savardian Spin-o-rama says:

      I’ve got relatives in Quebec, some of them separatists. On the question of equalization payments, they think the money is owed them because they paid too much tax!! Unbelievable. And these are educated people. Where the debt is concerned, similar logic prevails. They firmly believe that the ROC will assume a lot of because it’s the Feds who ran up the debt, not the province. Indeed, they believe the province’s share is a direct result of Federal underfunding of social programs. How do fight such ignorance?? You can’t. All you can do is say “I told you so” after they leave and everything falls apart.

    • frontenac1 says:

      Hola Trini! Glad to see the Artists are giving it a go down there.Saludos!
      http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2014/03/13/pauline-marois-hijab-sign_n_4956686.html

      • habstrinifan says:

        Holy Saludos.. as you say!

        She looks hot in that outfit. All my Virginal fantasies came to the fore.

        But I am a HABS fan. And I like the MINIMALISTIC approach.. )he hehe) . Show me LESS and I want MORE!

    • adadi says:

      Hey guys, the Habs are depressing enough. Can we leave politics out of this blog.

  22. Mick says:

    This is all a MB problem. We have DD as our number one. He is not good enough and if we make the playoffs it will be all the more evident that our #1 line is not a #1 line.

    • BobbySmithWasClutch says:

      It’s also an Andre Savard and Bob Gainey-legacy and scouting problem. Other than Price, MaxPac, Subban, Halak and arguably Higgins and Lapierre, we didn’t draft many other players good enough to succeed in playoff style hockey from 1999-2009. That’s a bad track record over a decade. I’m not including McDonagh because of the awful trade Gainey made for Gomez.

  23. frontenac1 says:

    Kudos to homeboy Bryan Allen for having a go with the Undisputed Heavyweight champ McGratton last night. Glad he survived.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IwhboIU4VmQ

    • SC-24 says:

      front – That’s the Guy we need on our 4th line – Not a prust, moen, parros injured most of the time – Lucic and the tough Guys would think twice!!

  24. naweed235 says:

    I for one would like to see Galchenyuk take over a game at least once. I know he is young and yada yada yada… but for a 3rd overall pick for whom them expectations were high, he hasn’t really impressed me

  25. doug19 says:

    I wonder about the coaching strategy of checking first for the likes of Pk, Galchenyuk, Eller, Beaulieu etc. To me scoring skills are rare and need to be developed. When checking is put first something is lost and may not be recovered. Prust and others have dropped of the score sheet also.
    Like many have said blocking a lot of shots means you do not have the puck. I notice the Habs have trouble defending teams who have trailers right up the middle. Why can’t the Habs do that? Sure you may get the odd lucky one off to the side if you get your dump in but……….

  26. Timo says:

    You people watch. Therrien will be given an extension at the season end (early May)

  27. adadi says:

    The Habs mediocrity, some would call it suckitude is catching up with the team. Many posters here like to point to the standings, but that is a mirage brought about by the oasis that is Carey Price. I would say the top goalie in the league this year, although disappointed that he chose to compromise his play with the team that pays him millions so he could play in the Olympics.

    In any event, I’ve watched almost every game this year and I do not believe it is a stretch to say that they have been outplayed in 75% of the games. Again Price has been the saviour.

    This team does not have the horses to go all the way. I’ve been saying that since September. However they have some good and even great pieces. To wit:

    Carey
    PK
    Chucky
    Gally
    Beaulieu
    Tinordi

    Even DD and Eller. The former over performed and the latter under performed.

    So why is this team so dismal? Simple, the coach(es) is terrible. He plays favourites in the worst way. He is not very clever. He is consistently out coached, he has ruined any chemistry on this team and perhaps worst of all he takes good/great players and makes them mediocre or even bad. To wit:

    PK
    Eller
    and watch out for Vanek

    So what to do? There is only one solution…he has to go. But therein lies the rub given the language politics in Montreal. I would love to see Molson come out and say the next coach will be the best one we can find regardless of language. But don’t hold your breath. Prepare for years of more mediocrity and suckitude. In the meantime, this team does not make the playoffs and I slowly retreat into the confines of the EPL and UEFA.

  28. Maritime Ronn says:

    It is now time to move on from Budaj.

    No doubt he is a great mate for Price and is greatly appreciated by the rest…as a back-up, yet he is simply not getting the job done.

    Since he took over from Carey, his SP is a dismal .867.
    Rarely do goalies win with an under .910 SP in a game, and Budaj has had only 1 game superior to that number in the past 7 games.

    Bad goals also deflate a team.

    Dustin Tokarski has been a winner at every level before the NHL – similar pre-NHL success comparable to Carey Price.

    Tokarski won a Memorial Cup and was voted MVP and Best goalie of the tournament.
    Tokarski was also in nets for a Canada Gold at the World Juniors. He also lead his Norfolk AHL team to a Calder Cup.

    In the 1 chance he was given, he won a shootout against Anaheim posting a .929 SP stopping 39 of 42 shots, and 4 out of 6 in the shootout.
    Almost a no-brainer, right…?

    • adadi says:

      The Budaj is not the problem. He is a great number 2 when he does not play more than one game in 7.

    • Timo says:

      I am sure it has something to do with a pathetic team in front of him too, Ronn. I mean, the team scored what… 2 goals in last 3 games? Do you really think Price would have won the SJ and Boston game? Maybe, but highly unlikely. If anything, playing Budaj exposes how bad Therrien and this team it. It shows that the entire season’s record is due to one man – Carey Price and that the rest of the team is horse sh!t.

  29. Rad says:

    I said before that I thought Therrien will be fired at the end of the season, and not mid-season. But if the Habs don’t put together some wins in the next week or so, I think Therrien could be replaced immediately. The trade for Vanek tells us that Bergevin is all-in this year, and may not be willing to see this coach survive through till the end of the season.

  30. munch17 says:

    As long as our number one line has a center who ranks 158th in scoring it will be difficult to win.
    It was great that he had a goal in the third period and it will help the stats – but it would have been nice in the first or second period when we had 3 power plays and he started each one.
    It is remarkable how bad our power play is – and this with PK and Markov at the point.
    DD cannot retrieve the puck , carry the zone , or shoot.
    Yes he can make a cute pass when all the stars align – but it is not enough.
    He ranks 49 th in scoring amongst centers and there are only 30 teams.
    A team needs a dominant line. Unfortunately we have gone through another season where a potential dominant center is not getting his chance (#27).

  31. jeffhabfan says:

    Well that is 3 stinkers in a row now. Better be careful or we will not make the playoffs need to get Price back badly.

  32. SC-24 says:

    Vanek is not the missing link for Habs – They have many missing links and getting worst – I have a feeling Price is out for the season
    and the Habs has given up – Play out the next 15 games – start fresh in October – Not sure if they’ll make the playoffs but they may finisnh higher than I suspected at the start of the season – I picked them to finish between 9 and 12 in the eastern conference!!

  33. saskhabsfan says:

    I’m never seen a stand still breakout work! Lol. And then stop at the oppenents blue line and dump it in so everyone is standing still again, and then start all over again! Coaching has to put a plan in place, and if you don’t follow the plan you get punished.


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