About last night …

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Shall we start with the positives?
Sure.
Why not?
The Canadiens are 1-2-1 against teams that missed the playoffs last season.
Gotta look for the silver lining.

• Max Pacioretty, celebrating a goal in Allen McInnis‘s Gazette photo, had eight shots on goal. He played on a physical, exciting forward line with  Andrei Kostitsyn (two shots, four hits) and the wizardly David Desharnais, whose 18:34 ToI at even-strength was high among Canadiens’ centres.

• Erik Cole played his best game as a Canadien. Cole had six hits (high on both teams) and made several clever plays along the boards and behind the Colorado net. He combined with Tomas Plekanec (four SoG) to form another forward line that brought the fans out of their seats several times last night.

• Brian Gionta had a goal, two assists and five S0G playing on what was the Canadiens’ third line.

• 10 players made the scoresheet.

• The Canadiens had 43 SoG  and they weren’t all from the perimeter. That’s after 36 shots against Calgary, 32 against Toronto. The Canadiens have outshot their opponents in three of four games.

• The Canadiens scored five goals twice in a week. They reached or exceeded that total seven times all of last season – and only once over the last 27 games of the season.

The team seems to have three lines that can score. And the fire power will increase exponentially when Michael Cammalleri returns. Cammalleri would have had a hat trick last night with the chances Travis Moen was getting on the Scott Gomez line.

As for preventing goals …

Ah, do we really have to discuss that?

It’s Sunday. Can’t we just crack a cold one and watch football.

I guess not, eh?

As we waited outside the Canadiens room after the game last night, I had a chat with Ron Reusch, who has seen a lot of Canadiens hockey games.

“Did you think going into the season that Hal Gill and P.K. Subban would be the team’s worst defencemen?” the wise old owl asked.

My reply was “Did you think we’d be looking forward to the return of Jaroslav Spacek?”

Here’s today’s challenge: Think of a metaphor to describe how inept the Canadiens’ D has been.

I’ll get you started with a personal favourite: softer than a ballet slipper full of wet cow flop.

Alexei Emelin – who was, along with Raphael Diaz, the least awful of the Dmen – had four hits last night.  Diaz had one, as did P.K. Subban.

Gorges, Gill and Yannick Weber combined for ZERO hits.

Because the Canadiens D is undersized – Gill plays like he’s 5’10” – and lack sand, opponents throw the puck around and glide into good scoring positions without fear of paying any physical price in the Canadiens’ zone.

Emelin will hit. But we can’t expect Diaz and Weber to morph into Ed Van Impe and Scott Stevens.

Carey Price was not good last night. Except for the Winnipeg game, he hasn’t been good this season … and the Paul Stastny breakaway goal, off that egregious turnover by P.K., was a harbinger of what we saw in the Shootout.

Remember that Price quote about how happy he was to spoil the Jets’ party?

Karma has been biting The Franchise in the ass through the two games since.

But Price is playing behind what’s looking like one of the worst Ds in the league. And this week’s schedule includes Buffalo and Pittsburgh.

The absence of Andrei Markov is a killer, of course. So was the preseason injury to Chris Campoli.

I hate to say I told you so …

Wait, that’s BS. I LOVE to say I told you so.

But you don’t have to be Scotty Bowman or Tony Marinaro to realize Roman Hamrlik would look awfully good eating up minutes on the Canadiens’ blueline right now.

Washington gave Hamrlik a two-year contract at $3.5 million per – $2 million less than he made here for carrying the D through Markov’s absences.

Calgary got four goals on 21 shots, Colorado five on 30.

Again, Price has not been stellar. But playing against the Canadiens’ vanilla defence, opponents are getting a whole lot of good looks at the net. And forwards at this level bury their chances.

Buffalo, at Pittsburgh, Toronto.

And it doesn’t get easier: Philadelphia at home and at Boston back-to-back, then Bruins at the Bell Centre to round out the month.

And if the Canadiens enter November in the nether regions of the Eastern Conference and needing a win streak to rejoin the leaders …

Hey, it’s Sunday.

Are you ready for some football?

How about a pick-me-up from Yoshi:

347 Comments

  1. riddler says:

    No live blog tonight????

  2. VintageFan says:

    The Canadiens’ Master Plan is terribly flawed. Coach and GM do not like ‘tough guys’ or players with sandpaper, or apparently big players. They do not sign or draft such players and if one slips into the system they never gain a regular spot on the squad. They like small, fast, skilled players, and the Habs are filled with these players. This is OK as a recipe for an offense-first, attack oriented team. Risky, but OK. But the idiocy of the current regime is that they want this group of small, speedy players to play defence-first, prevent hockey, and then counterattack when the opportunity presents itself. It will not work. Not ever.

  3. LTHF says:

    Can anyone tell me why after I post a comment ,it only stay there for couple of hours then disappears.

  4. Everlasting1 says:

    About tonight…
    I tell ya, penalties and a poor pk/pp continue to plague the Blues. I say fire the special teams coach NOW. Halak cannot buy a break – 3 pp goals (though technically only 1, the others late getting back into play coming outta the box). Not to mention yet another goal by a redirect off a defender’s skate, and another resulting from two defenders w/o their sticks! lol
    The positives..Arnott tallying his 5th point in as many games (2G, 3A), Steen with 3G,2A, Pietrangelo 1G,2A, and D’Agostini, Berglund with strong starts..
    Andy MacDonald out of the lineup with another concussion, it seems.

    ——————————————————————-
    When the Hebrew scouts investigate the Promised Land of Canaan and return to discourage the other Hebrews from entering it..”We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.” [Numbers 13:33]

    “We don’t see things as they are, but as we are.” – Anais Nin

    • you live in toronto and you root for anything but local, which at this point, is not admirable man

      talk original six if you must, but the only time the blues fall into that chatter is bobby orr’s goal

      sergio, nobody in st-louis cares about the blues, why would you think canadians would, let alone quebecers, or montrealers for that matter?

      • Everlasting1 says:

        Would you be saying that if I was still a Habs’ fan? Not that it’s any of your concern/business, but I’ve always despised the Leafs, and the Habs just don’t inspire me any more. If I had to choose between them I’d choose the Leafs! Better? :)
        St.Louis are having record sales/coverage, and have endured. And the Nordiques?

        ——————————————————————-
        When the Hebrew scouts investigate the Promised Land of Canaan and return to discourage the other Hebrews from entering it..”We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.” [Numbers 13:33]

        “We don’t see things as they are, but as we are.” – Anais Nin

    • HabsChris says:

      You’re posting stats about the St.Louis Blues on a Habs forum. The audience, a bunch of people who could give less of a sh*t. How much time do you have on your hands?

      • Everlasting1 says:

        Thanx for readin’.

        ——————————————————————-
        When the Hebrew scouts investigate the Promised Land of Canaan and return to discourage the other Hebrews from entering it..”We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.” [Numbers 13:33]

        “We don’t see things as they are, but as we are.” – Anais Nin

  5. hansolo says:

    1. Even though we lost last night, the most encouraging aspect for me was that the team came back. Despite the shot counts, they didn’t do that against Calgary or Toronto.

    The second most encouraging aspect was that our small forwards did OK against a huge Colorado defense. Despite looking forward to playing against our smurfs, Ryan O’Byrne played only 4:37 in the 2nd period, 3:35 in the 3rd period, and not at all in OT. Not exactly the one that got away, if you ask me.

    Third, Our Swiss Misters and Alexei Emelin, while they’ve made their share of mistakes, have played better than I thought they would.

    Fourth, AK46, DD51 and MP67 might have something going.

    Fifth, Travis Moen is showing people he’s a better player than we sometimes give him credit for.

    2. On the negative side, besides the obvious ones of defense and goaltending, we seemingly have no 4th line. Darche and Palushaj played less than 6 minutes, Engqvist only 7:17. Not good.

    Despite how he has played so far this season, you know Price will get better.

    PK isn’t just doing too much because he’s compensating for Gill. He’s trying to be a hotdog, possibly because this is a contract year for him. The sooner he realizes he should play like PK, and not try to emulate Drew Doughty, the better.

    3. About what-ifs:

    a) If Jeff Woywitka was such a defensive stud, Dallas wouldn’t have let him walk. Big blueliners are not rare; big blueliners who can play solid defense are.

    b) If Kirk Muller (whom I loved as a player and assistant coach) was ready to be head coach in the NHL, he would have been hired in the off-season. I think going to Milwaukee will be good for him. Perhaps he can succeed there and come back as head coach when JM’s contract is up. I think the French language issue can be overcome. Gainey overcame it and so will Kirk, if necessary.

    c) Guy Boucher (whom I also love as a possible choice for a future Canadiens’ head coach) has an even worse record in TB to start the season than we do. It will turn around for him, as it will for us.

    d) I don’t think JM’s going anywhere. If it’s true he doesn’t talk to his players, that’s discouraging to hear, but if he really has lost the room, we would hear about it. I like the way he stood up for Price last night after the game and for his young players after the Calgary game. I expected Diaz to get benched after his 3rd period penalty but he wasn’t. I don’t think JM destroys young players. He does very much believe in the “team” concept and that undoubtedly is difficult for some players, who might understandably focus on their individual stats, to believe in all the time.

    4. So, I may be guilty of wearing Habs-colored glasses but I’m not ready to throw the team (including coach and GM) under the bus just yet. Let’s wait for the injured players to return and base our impressions of the team on a fair sample. Right now, the sample size is too small to say anything meaningful, even about Gomez’ play.

  6. JohnBellyful says:

    HIO is a good forum for fans devoted to hockey and with so many contributors, it’s only natural there will be clashes among those who hold contrary views. Invariably, the point is made that none of us has coached at the professional level and therefore lack the credentials to be taken seriously.
    Let me suggest a remedy that will add to the credibility of posters as informed observers and remove forever the taint they are nothing more than dilettantes whose views are as likely to influence a team’s fortunes as spit on ice.
    What I propose is that HIO set up a academy, to be held each year at the gathering I Dare Not Speak Its Name or Have My Post Sent to Limbo, in which enrollees will complete a three-hour course of study and earn a certificate of coaching. With diploma in hand, graduates will be able to pontificate on any subject related to hockey, in bars, on street corners and here at Hockey InsideOut, knowing their views carry weight and are not to be challenged.
    You can also bet your sweet bippy it will open the door to offers of employment from NHL teams.
    So what is the course of study the Highly Informed Opinion Academy will offer? The curriculum is still being developed but Line Combinations 101, for sure. Chemistry (Team) is another, as well as Media Relations – When Everything Turns Sour; NHL Rules (elective); Basic Math (sample question: If three players come off the ice at the same time, how many leave the bench?); The System: What Is It Good For? Absolutely Nothing. Say It Again; and Tales of Inspiration: Whoopee Cushions and Other Game-Changers in NHL History.
    An additional hour of instruction will be offered for anyone wishing to become a general manager. (Assignments include students being given mock rosters and told to make a blockbuster deal in 15 minutes as the trade deadline approaches).
    To apply for an instructor’s position, send a resume along with a cover letter explaining why you would like to join the HIO Academy.

  7. defender says:

    There’s only a certain number of players on the roster with a ring and travis moen is one of em. So all u dissing him don’t know hockey or what it takes to win.

    • HardHabits says:

      We’re dissing Gomez Sherlock.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Doesn’t that get boring after awhile?

        • VancouverHab says:

          No. On the contrary, Scott Gomez is about to be announced as the most amazing scientific discovery in history. He is the perpetual energy source: there is no exhaustion of the energy people in his sphere (or at least on H-I/O or in Montreal media) expend bashing him.

          His ability to stimulate journalists and fans to conceive higher and better achievements vituperation is the realisation of the dreams of Dr James Graham when he tried to invent the Celestial Bed.

  8. JohnBellyful says:

    HIO is a good forum for fans devoted to hockey and with so many contributors, it’s only natural there will be clashes among those who hold contrary views. Invariably, the point is made that none of us has coached at the professional level and therefore lack the credentials to be taken seriously.
    Let me suggest a remedy that will add to the credibility of posters as informed observers and remove forever the taint they are nothing more than dilettantes whose views are as likely to influence a team’s fortunes as spit on ice.
    What I propose is that HIO set up a academy, to be held each year at the summit, in which enrollees will complete a three-hour course of study and earn a certificate of coaching. With diploma in hand, graduates will be able to pontificate on any subject related to hockey, in bars, on street corners and here at Hockey InsideOut, knowing their views carry weight and are not to be challenged.
    You can also bet your sweet bippy it will open the door to offers of employment from NHL teams.
    So what is the course of study the Highly Informed Opinion Academy will offer? The curriculum is still being developed but Line Combinations 101, for sure. Chemistry (Team) is another, as well as Media Relations – When Everything Turns Sour; NHL Rules (elective); Basic Math (sample question: If three players come off the ice at the same time, how many leave the bench?); The System: What Is It Good For? Absolutely Nothing. Say It Again; and Tales of Inspiration: Whoopee Cushions and Other Game-Changers in NHL History.
    An additional hour of instruction will be offered for anyone wishing to become a general manager. (Assignments include students being given mock rosters and told to make a blockbuster deal in 15 minutes as the trade deadline approaches).
    To apply for an instructor’s position, send a resume along with a cover letter explaining why you would like to join the HIO Academy.

  9. JohnBellyful says:

    HIO is a good forum for fans devoted to hockey and with so many contributors, it’s only natural there will be clashes among those who hold contrary views. Invariably, the point is made that none of us has coached at the professional level and therefore lack the credentials to be taken seriously.
    Let me suggest a remedy that will bolster the credibility of posters as informed observers and remove forever the taint they are nothing more than dilettantes whose views are as likely to influence a team’s fortunes as spit on ice.
    What I propose is that HIO set up a academy, to be held each year at the summit, in which enrollees will complete a three-hour course of study and earn a certificate of coaching. With diploma in hand, graduates will be able to pontificate on any subject related to hockey, in bars, on street corners and here at Hockey InsideOut, knowing their views carry weight and are not to be challenged.
    You can also bet your sweet bippy it will open the door to offers of employment from NHL teams.
    So what is the course of study the Highly Informed Opinion Academy will offer? The curriculum is still being developed but Line Combinations 101, for sure. Chemistry (Team) is another, as well as Media Relations – When Everything Turns Sour; NHL Rules (elective); Basic Math (sample question: If three players come off the ice at the same time, how many leave the bench?); The System: What Is It Good For? Absolutely Nothing. Say It Again; and Tales of Inspiration: Whoopee Cushions and Other Game-Changers in NHL History.
    An additional hour of instruction will be offered for anyone wishing to become a general manager. (Assignments include students being given mock rosters and told to make a blockbuster deal in 15 minutes as the trade deadline approaches).
    To apply for an instructor’s position, send a resume along with a cover letter explaining why you would like to join the HIO Academy.

  10. HardHabits says:

    By the end of October the Habs should be well entrenched in draft lottery territory.

    I could handle the Habs tanking for a few years. It’s not that I have acquired any kind of new found patience, it’s that at my age time flies by way faster than it did like when I was 10 years old. Now 4 years seems like a few months. So it should take only what seems like a few months to get this team on track to being something other than play-off cannon fodder.

  11. C_exacte says:

    Patches with AK seems to equal the good AK, I’m assuming there’s a new chair at AK’s table at Da Vinci’s this year.

  12. Habbu says:

    We could sure use a kid like that O’Byrne from Col……….hey wait a minute

  13. LA Loyalist says:

    I’m not an actuary (thank g*d) but we have now played 4 games and collected 3 points out of 8. The longer we stumble around losing and/or getting loser points, the harder it’s going to be to overcome a bad start.

    It’s fine to say wait 10 games and see, I was thinking it myself, but purely on the mathematics of it, if we play less than .500 for the next six games and are sitting at 10 games with less than 10 points. it is not going to be easy to make it up.

    I need only reference NJ last year who couldn’t catch up even while running the table against everybody. And we haven’t played anyone good yet. I’m not worried about Price, and yeah we have serious injuries, but I am a lot more worried than I thought I would be 4 games into the freaking season.

    • Mark C says:

      Are you really comparing a 82 point pace after 10 games to the Devils, who were 10-29-2, or a 44 point pace at the half way point? Yikes, no wonder you’re so worried.

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      If you were an actuary you wouldn’t be doing anything “statistical” with a four game sample. Also’ the Devils didn’t blow the entire season last year with a bad month of October. The Devils continued to play terrible hockey well into the season, even the first few weeks under Jacques Lemaire were awful, and that was in December.

      “Andrei Kostitsyn is a better hockey player than Max Pacioretty”
      – Sean Bonjovi

  14. LA Loyalist says:

    LA Kings Drew Doughty, he of the freshly signed $7M contract, just went on the IR after playing what? 3 games?

    If we had signed Wiz as insurance, you think LA wouldn’t be in a position of having to cough up a good young kid for him? LA has a lot of good kids, I would have to check but it’s possible there are one or two that are over 6′ tall and 200 lbs.

    Or we could have used him ourselves until we were sure about Markov, Emelin, etc., and then traded him at the deadline.

    Once again we lose an asset we could have leveraged, roll the dice, and come up “snake eyes”.

    I’m not saying it’s entirely PG’s fault, Betts and Campoli are just bad luck, really, and I guess they were our insurance, but geez, we need a little more vision around here.

    • HFX-HabFan says:

      Please tell us more about how much better your son is at taking faceoffs than Gomez.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Sounds to me like LA should have traded a 5th rounder this summer so they could have signed the wiz. Oh wait only mtl makes mistakes not the beloved Kings.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        Kings make mistakes. I don’t think they should have paid Doughty more than Kopitar when they swore up and down they wouldn’t. The credibility of management is shot, and g*d knows what effect it will have down the road in the room.

        They could have had Kovalchuk last summer, he was in LA, ready to sign. Their management team blew that one, too. That is fact.

        There is a difference between a mistake and mis-managing assets. For example: Gainey signed Laraque, knowing we needed him. It’s bad luck that Laraque went vegan on us, but Gainey’s thinking was correct. It was not bad management.

        Likewise with PG, Betts and Campoli, good insurance guys, bad luck with both of them, I’m not tossing the fault ball over them.

        Other guys, though? I might still argue we didn’t get enough for Halak, though from what you guys say Eller is coming along well and that may work out. I’ll concede that one until I can see him play live and see his whole game.

        Couldn’t we use Domenic Moore right now? Couldn’t we use Wiz right now? PG assumed Markov would be ok, he presumed Emelin would adjust quickly (I think he’s going to be great) but my point is when we have known, valuable assets that may not fit into our long term plans, we need to maximize the value of said assets, not just dump them.

        That’s mismanagement. I’m not looking for PG’s head – yet. Until we can see the whole team as it is supposed to be, it’s hard to place the bets.

        And by the way I’m not a Kings fan. My kid is in their system, so we are exposed to them a lot, that’s all. Our west coast team is Ducks because of loyalty to Saku and because my kid and i like Hiller (who just shut out San Jose 1-0 stopping 32 shots). He seems ready for the new season.

        Habs? Not so much.

    • Mark C says:

      So what does LA do in this ridiculous scenario, when Doughty comes off IR and their ~4M over the cap? Did you only think this far enough ahead to where you bash management without considering important things, such as the cap?

    • ZepFan2 says:

      Dude, put down the bottle!

      ———————————————————————-
      Welcome to the newer NHL: The National Headshot League.

  15. zak says:

    Look on the bright side, we’re only 2 pts out of a playoff spot

  16. GoGioGo says:

    Feel free to insult me or to think I pressed the panic button already, but who thinks I might have been right when I told my friends at the start of the season, that if things don’t go well, Cammy could be packing his bags at the trade deadline?

    And again don’t worry, I know some will hate me just for mentioning it. I’ve already been exposed to some serious name-calling when wording that thought before. So go ahead!

    “That’s it, we’re doomed! The season is over!” -Most people on this site, each time the opponent scores. Almost everyone in town, when the opponent takes the lead. At least I wait until we lose our first game.

  17. Ton says:

    I am into every one having a fair shot at making the NHL; with this said is DD an NHL’er. I think he’s too small and gets pushed off the puck. His ice time has been increased big time, are they showcasing him. Interesting to see what other poster think about DD.

    • Matt. says:

      or his ice time is increasing because he’s a better hockey player than some of the other centres on the Habs roster, Gomez and Engqvist

    • munch17 says:

      I agree entirely. He is terrible in our zone . Maybe he should be on the wing and Lars at centre.

    • LA Loyalist says:

      Mats Naslund was our last 100 pt player. How freaking long ago was that? He was small. Henri Richard, of whom you may have heard, was 5′ 7″. He has more freaking Cup rings than fingers. Saku was what? 5′ 10″?

      DD has TALENT – not that JM cares. Anyway, put him with TWO BIG WINGERS who can finish, and he will be fine. Put him with two other smurfs, and it won’t work. It’s that freaking simple, people.

      You can’t teach talent. You can nudge it, nurture it, noodle it, and if you’re Jacques Martin, destroy it. If we dump DD for Gomez, I think I am going to find a bridge somewhere and… …spray paint something rude in both official languages.

      • Mark C says:

        What are you talking about? JM gave DD 7 more minutes of ice than Gomez last night, and DD is averaging almost a minute and a half more than Gomez this year. How is JM destorying DD’s talent?

    • showey47 says:

      I like DD as a player. The guy works his a$$ off and doesn’t play timid. I feel he is at his best in a situation where he is playing with 2 big wingers like last night. Where my concern lies is about him getting outmatched defensively against biggest and faster centers in the neutral zone and our own end. Which is why i’ve felt his best chance to stick with the team and to succeed is by using him as a left winger. But i’d love nothing more then for him to prove me wrong and turn into a reliable 50 to 60 point 2nd line center.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        Maybe DD as a winger with Eller at Center and another large winger with hand and an edge is worth looking at. I’m just saying for a smaller player to succeed they should be with a couple of large guys. Actual position is secondary.

      • HardHabits says:

        The thing about DD I noticed last game is that he has a high compete level. It’s one of the reasons IMO that he succeeds.

  18. petefleet says:

    You know, if Price played his ‘A’ game last night, there isn’t a reporter in the world who would be tearing the ‘D’ a new one today. If the Habs score 5 goals on any given night, they have to know they’re going to win the game. Price’s play last night was atrocious. I hope he improves for the Buffalo game.
    ******************************************
    Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

    ***Habs Forever***

    • LA Loyalist says:

      what about “le systeme”? Is there no “le responsibilite” for “le system”?

      Just wondering…

      • petefleet says:

        I’m not sure how that translates into a better game for Price. The ones he let in were pretty easy stops on most nights. I will say he lots of time to find his game.

        ******************************************
        Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

        ***Habs Forever***

  19. KLear says:

    This defense is starting to worry me. Watched Bulldogs play last night. If anyone thinks Joe Callahan is going to be any kind of help think again (-2 and some glaring mis-reads)

  20. Neutral says:

    if JM keeps the line’s he had last night against the AV’s, and coaches the same way. Buffalo tuesday should be an exciting game. I don’t know if we’ll win but it’ll be good to watch, other than the D and Goaltending last night it was a good game. leave everything the same JM…

  21. likehoy says:

    is there something wrong when our dman penciled in at number 8 to start the season is outplaying the one penciled in at number 1?

    PK has to stop thinking he’s the best player in the world and start playing a team game again

  22. Habitant in Surrey says:

    http://www.cbc.ca/video/#/Sports/1221284063/ID=2151112748
    …Don Cherry with Gord Stellick, CBC/Sirius radio
    …for Your listening pleasure

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY
    http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=423049

  23. Chris Higgins says:

    Ah, just one less game to go until the mother of a gellin’s. JM is just a few weeks from launching The System 2.0. It’s gonna be the hockey equivalent of the iPad!!!

  24. theflower says:

    Hey Guys, I need some help. So I am in Ibiza, Spain and I have a fantasy league on ESPN that I would like to start with 11 other Habs fans. We will do a draft and everything. It’s for me just a great way to keep in touch with proper fans and have some hockey fun also. I would like to do a proper draft and have one with like minded people Habs Fans! drop me an email please if you are interested. greezybro @ gmail.com I need 11 guys asap first 11 are in! Must be a Habs fan!

  25. Ian Cobb says:

    This from Chris Nilan

    Chris Nilan
    The apology by Don Cherry was enough for me.He was man enough to admit he was wrong,was contrite,and sincere could not ask for more.I thank all who supported me.

  26. Ian Cobb says:

    The Alouettes keep on winning because of great coaching and communication with players.

  27. chilli says:

    I can’t really blame Martin for the way he is playing Cole. Having seen every game (and preseason), the two worst guys on the Habs in terms of puck skill are Enquist and Cole. His hands are cement and seems really unhappy in terms of his slouching on the bench etc…

    I do think the team will decide the fate of Martin. In the next 20 games, they might just play him out of town. He might be losing the room. Biggie Tits and Cole will win the battle vs. the coach.

    I like the team. We are worse than last year, but we gotta let these young kids learn. I knew losing Hammer and Wiz would have a bigger impact than people thought. We have 2 D who have never played in the NHL, we have one guy off of major surgery and one not even skating because of his major surgery.

    Eller will be good, Max Pax will be good, but we really didn’t improve the team with Cole. Gomez is doing his thing. He’s working hard, but he and Gionta really don’t have a lot of chemistry. They get close, but nothing ever happens.

    I hope Cole can find his game but he seems out of sync with his own body. Like he put himself off-side last night – and he was carrying the puck. WTF?

    Tre

  28. HabinBurlington says:

    Breaking News. eklund is reporting Vancouver closing in on an infamous E4+ trade. Kyle Turris to Van.

    Aahhhhh the old E4+, one of my favorite trade rumors!

  29. habstrinifan says:

    Cole says JM does NOT talk to him!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Is this a joke or what????

  30. ffenliv says:

    I think (at least, this works for my sanity) some people might find it helpful to break things down into good/bad after a frustrating loss

    1) Good

    – Patches played shifts where he couldn’t be stopped
    – DD and AK46 (to me, anyway) looked pretty good
    – for the second time in 8 days a team that has had some trouble scoring managed to bag 5 goals in a game

    2) Bad

    – defense looked awful
    – Price looked like a sieve
    – Subban made way too many shitty decisions and attempts to do it all himself
    – Gill looked like crap
    – Cole, while appearing better, still wasn’t the force you’d like him to be

    Now, of the ‘bad’, a lot of those are fixable. we know Price is good. He’ll turn it around. We know Subban has the skills, but he is young, and is prone to mistakes of enthusiasm and some brain cramps. He’ll learn (or he won’t), but I believe he will. Gill, well, he might look like that more games than not. Cole? Way, way, way too early to tell.

    So, on the whole, the game was lost, but I think a lot of the problems will work out in the end, and we’ll be looking at a 5-7th place finish at the end of the season.

  31. Trisomy 21 says:

    I dislike Gomez as much as the next guy, but I didn’t see him make a stupid play when he was the last man back. I understand everyone has a man crush on PK but why dump on Carey at the drop of a hat and not admit PK has not had a good game yet? He keeps making the low % high risk plays. He just f&%$in’ loves the crowd going nuts for him and you can see that when he makes his forwards sit at the blue line so he can skate in the with puck only to leave Darche or AK to cover his position.
    There’s no chance we will have a low goals against when a guy who was one of our best last year plays like our worst Dman.

    • habstrinifan says:

      P.K was horrid and is showing signs of getting a swell head. There I have said it. No man crush here.

      But with all the young or inexperienced defensemen and the fluidity of the defense now… wouldnt you sit up with hope if the Canadiens made an announcement tomorrow that they are bringing in a ‘defense’ coach… say Larry Robinson, with the fulll support of JM.

      And wouldnt the team have been better served by doing what it took to retain Jeff Woywitka and develop him. Did they really see a bigger future in getting Campoli.

      Many players are performing badly NOW.. but until the management of the team shows signs of better planning, organization, and a modern day approach to player development and team building… it is hard to judge and possibly cast off players… including Gomez.

      Gomez is not a top six forward.. but would a better and more astute management have described a better role for him and convinced him to embrace that role.

      People are dumping on Gionta. And yet no one..least none I have read.. harkens back to his season ending exit-press conference where he almost pleaded for management “to do what it takes” for the team to take the next step.

      Was Hall Gill’s remarks ,that he is looking with confidence for the team to replace the elements that Muller brought to the room, analysed and heeded by management.

      Review the apointments of the two Hamilton coaches as JM’s assistant. Are you brimming with confidence that it was a well planned and analysed decision or a ‘plan b’ last minute move.

      Is the disquiet coming from Cole just that of a sullen under-performing player? Really?

      There is more wrong with this team than P.K or any other player/s.

      • Nina76 says:

        Yes I think tha PK has gotten too big for his britches…………he has had too much fuss from the fans. I do not like it when they keep calling PK,PK,PK…………that is not good for the rest of the players…………..Yes he does have a big head that is what is happening to his game….EASE OFF FANS!!!!!!!

  32. rogus says:

    Some things I’ve noticed about the team this year. Our grit guys are getting it done. Moen, Pax, Eller, Desharnais, Darche, Gorges, are all going to the difficult areas and making the plays. Gionta too (kinda). Skilled guys are not effective Gomez still driving wide, PK trying too hard, Andrei still streaky. Some of the kids are doing great, some don’t impress me much. Emelin is getting better every game, and is a tank on skates, who cares if he’s fat? What’s with the Diaz love fest? Dude hot potato’s the puck and results in givaways more times than not. I never thought I’d say this but I’m praying for Spacek’s recover to get Diaz off the ice. Souray looks like Big Bird compared to our D. Maybe someone should explain the difference between corps and corpse to those guys. Some bright spots ahead, but help is at least a Markov and a Cammi away, until then, more of the same from the Count and crew.

  33. j2w4habs25 says:

    send gomez home for acouple days and let Budj in net against Buffalo – atleast well come out with a win.

    Carey Price #31

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Nice read Andrew. I liked the breakdown of each D.

      In regards to Subban I personally think he is being overused. You have to remember that he really has less professional hockey experience than even Diaz or Yemelin. Subban has one full NHL season plus a little bit from the year before with the playoffs. With the amount on injuries that have been happening on the back end PK is trying to step up but is creating a lot of his own mistakes. He is really young and personally I do think PG made a bit of a mistake on our defense this year. there is either rookies with little to no experience or guys in the twilight of their careers (minus Jorges).

      I think there will be some growing pains this season on D and I do see that being a major reason why this team may struggle.

      I have nothing against Diaz but why pick him up when you have weber in development? we could have had someone like Mara, Sopel, Hamrlik etc in his place along with Emelin instead of Diaz. That would give us a bit more balance on the back end of experience vs youth.

      That move kind of baffles me a bit and if it isn’t addressed I think our D will be in trouble.

      • Thanks a bunch Kooch for the comments!

        Subban is taking on a lot of responsibility, no doubt about it, but I don’t know if it’s too much. I think he just needs to settle down and realize he doesn’t need to put on a show.

        The D is definitely going to be a little bit of a learning process. 4 young guys still getting used to the NHL game might be rough for 30 games or so.

        As for Diaz, he’s a good player, Martin is just overusing him. Guys like Mara and Sopel were on the bottom end of the league in every single category last season, so they don’t have much value. Diaz was a cheap option that will pay off in the second half in my opinion.

        http://twitter.com/andrewberkshire

        • Kooch7800 says:

          I hope that Diaz does pay off and I think he will but I am worried that with the D having such a big learning curve that the team is really going to have to battle for a spot.

          Here is a question, when Markov comes back is it Diaz out?

  34. 100HABS says:

    I’d like to see Eller replace DD. Eller had good chemistry with AK last year and it seems AK and Max are creating chemistry as well. DD tries hard but just seems too small to make the play.

    AK-Eller-Pacioretty

    Try it Jacques!

  35. Did anyone catch Erik Cole talking to Cassie Campbell on HNIC last night?

    They brought it up on habstalkradio. Apparently Cole told Campbell that he doesn’t talk to Martin/Martin doesn’t talk to him.

    HTR also noted that Price was spotted on HNIC coming to the Bell with his gf. They suspect maybe she kept Carey from getting his pre-game nap. LOL

    ___________________________________________

    Eyes on The Prize! and on Twitter

    • RetroMikey says:

      Apparently, Cole is not adapting to Martin’s coaching and is logging on average of 15 minutes of ice time for a player we are paying the big bucks to score goals as well as be the physical player we need.
      I see Erik Cole wanting out of Montreal if Jacques Martin is still our coach this season and seasons to come.

      “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

      • SmartDog says:

        Sorry, but that could be a good thing. Not overly impressed with the Cole signing. Bring in a younger guy, less injury prone at that money.

        On the upside, it might take something like Cole flopping for PG to see what everyone sees: Martin is old school and getting older by the game. He’s a cold-blooded dinosaur in a warm-blooded world.

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

        • Habsrule1 says:

          Who did you have in mind? I like the Cole signing and I don’t see any ill-effects from his injuries. Time will tell how well he’ll do but I think it was a very good signing. He has looked very good at times and very ordinary at times.

          It’s always easy to sign the greatest players in the league from your couch, but doing it in real life is another story. Habs fans complain when we sign someone and they complain when we don’t.

          It’s a long season. I think this is a good team but the defense may be a problem, especially with Markov & Spacek out, and PK and Gorges struggling somewhat.

          Go Habs Go!!

          “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

          • SmartDog says:

            To me there are two kinds of long term signings that are good. Guys who are not expensive but are solid and bring good overall value. And guys who ARE expensive but you either get them at a good rate (Pleks) or they are likely to improve (or at least not decline) over their term. Cole is 32. Hockey players start to retire in their mid-30s because htey can’t keep up with the game. Few forwards improve in their 30’s and most decline. Why sign a guy for 4.5 million AND a no-trade (which even he was surprised at), and have him be the savior of our offensive punch. He’s about a 20-goal guy most years. So to me he’s a) not worth 4.5 million, and b) in decline rather than improving and not to mention c) not the most robust guy around. So that’s why I don’t get it. And I don’t accept that he was the best of what’s available. You wait for the right guy. I’d rather have AK on the 1st or 2nd line and spend more money on the best face-off and PK guy available. To me this was a “we have to do something” move. Even if it looks “okay” this year, I guarantee it won’t be pretty in its final year. So why do it?

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

    • swannyboy says:

      Martin has to go,put someone in with a better system to suit the players we have,He doesn”t talk to his players,what kind of shit is that?

    • avatar_58 says:

      Oh habs…mountains out of nothing

    • Propwash says:

      Maybe she gave him a groin injury……

  36. otter649 says:

    Last track of him in recent years but (sports) writer Earl McRae passed away yesterday in Ottawa – He was a fun read when he wrote in Toronto Sun – RIP Earl……

  37. RetroMikey says:

    Boy we sure are crapping early in the season. You are supposed to come flying out in the beginning of the season and get those W’s early on in the season,
    Hate to say it but it’s going to be another season where our so- called mighty Habs will be fighting for a playoff season down to the last few games of the season while other teams can float knowing they clinched a playoff spot so early in the season.
    Wish we would have sined the reliable Hamrlik instead of throwing money to an offensively talented injured D player in Markov.
    But it’s early still and after 20 games, we should improve, after all we still have the same nucleus of star players in Gionta, Gomez, Cammalleri, Plekanec, Kostitsyn to name a few who will be firing in goals with heir skill and guide us to the Cup this year, meh!
    Great to see Weber out there not afraid to give the body when playing D, meh!
    Yup, when Markov comes back, he’s our saviour, he’ll guide us out of this slump and we’ll lead the league in fewest goals allowed and with PK Subban playing excellent D in his sophmore season, meh!
    We’ve got problems if Martin is constantly juggling lines so early in the season.

    “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

    • saskhabfan says:

      Other teams can float because they have already clinched a playoff spot? With 78 or 79 games to go???? LMFAO. Just when you thought MEHtromehkey couldn’t sound like somebody who was just introduced to hockey today,he makes a post like this.

      Ron Jeremy rates your post as totally limp.

  38. rogieshan says:

    Some of us forget that outside of his one 33-goal season, Gomez has never scored more than 19 goals in a year. He has been on the decline since leaving New Jersey, and given his age, there is no reason to expect him to reverse this trend. The reality is this: Gomez, Gionta & Moen is the team’s 3rd line.

    When did Martin change his mind about Weber – who couldn’t even crack the top-eight, D-men depth in the preseason – and is now using him in every situation (including the first PK unit)?

    • 24moreCups says:

      I’m not sticking up for Gomez at all but he’s also mostly a play maker so we shouldn’t expect a lot goals from him.

      • NightRyder says:

        Well then I’d say zero in 36 and four in 66 is living up to your expectations.

        Good thing he has 16 assists (and a -13) in that 36-game goalless streak to live up to your “playmaker” label.

        • Matt. says:

          don’t worry, Gomez still has a few more years on his contract to make amends

        • 24moreCups says:

          MY “playmaker” label? Haha chill out, I’m not impressed with Gomez nor was I happy when we signed him, even if he plays well this season I think the money we’re spending on him could be put to some guys that will actually contribute consistently and be a difference maker on our team.

          Like I said I’m not sticking up for Gomez at all, I just said we shouldn’t expect lots of goals from him because the role he plays is more of a play maker. I’m also not saying he’s playing his role very well.. smart ass.

          • NightRyder says:

            Wasn’t ripping you big guy, just continuing to point out what a pud Gomez is.

          • 24moreCups says:

            @NightRyder- I apologize if I was being rude, I always see people arguing here and wasn’t really in the mood for one of those haha.

            Cheers buddy!

    • LA Loyalist says:

      What do gomez and abe lincoln have in common?

      Nether of them can finish a play.

      Gomez is being wildly outplayed by DD. Is that funny or what?

  39. Mr. Biter says:

    True that Price did not bring his “A” game but the defense was brutal last night. We lost faceoffs which lead directly to 2 Avs goals (where is Jeff Halpren when we need him) The defensemen could not get the puck out of end and Avs players were sitting on or in front of Price all night and no one moved them. Forwards were very good and when Cammy comes back we could become a very high scoring team however our defense better pick it up a few gears or we may need 5 goals to win. Also if Price was bad PK was brutal last night.

    Mr. Biter

  40. DickandDanny says:

    Is it just me or do the habs continually miss opportunites other teams rarely miss. I am referring to the choice of starting goaltenders last night, not scoring chances, but were good at missing those also. Almost every team I can think of always give a goalie a chance to start against their former Team. Last night was Budaj’s game against his old Avalanche team. It is the only time we will see them in Montreal this season. The way Price looked in the nets you can almost tell that he was thinking the same thing, “what am I doing in here, this isn’t my game, this is Peter’s start”. I’ve seen this sort of missed opportunity thing occur countless times in the past few years, and honestly this is where Montreal always used to be the team that lead in making those choices. Now we don’t seem to have a clue. I’m sure you can think of your own scenarios where this has occurred in the past few years. Wake up Habs management.

    One other comment. The D. How many similar type D men do we need? Right now almost our entire core, excluding Gill are the exact same player. I would have kepy Woywotka. I thought he had a good pre-season and deserved a top 7 spot. My other choice would be Alex Henry in the 8th D man spot. What does this guy have to do to make the big club? He tries every pre-season to show that his size and toughness are something the habs could use. Every year he gets sent back to the minors while we all complain we have no size and grit on the back end. I am completely dis-illusioned by the hockey management in Montreal right now. Guys, check the past rosters, we normally had 3-4 puck moving D men and 3 big tough bruisers to back them up. Think about this, Henry could be the new Pierre Bouchard, Woywotka could be Rod Langway, and Paul Mara could be Brian Engblom, if given the chance. Yes, I know Langway was 2 times the player Wowoytka ever will be, but I am trying to show how certain types of players are needed on our D corps and all three that I mentioned have size and toughness that is required.

    \”A cannoting blast from the wing, by Lafleur\”

  41. Un Canadien errant says:

    The season has not started with a bang. With a talented but not necessarily deep roster, the Canadiens need a few things to go right for them to win regularly. The goaltending needs to be solid. The young defence corps needs to play dependable hockey. The forwards need to outskate the opposition, convert some lucky bounces. The power play needs to click, to ensure adversaries don’t take too many liberties with the relatively small Canadiens roster.

    So far, not many things are going right for our team. Carey Price had excelled so far this season, but admitted to playing poorly against the Avalanche. PK Subban has tried to be the second coming of Paul Coffey, and has committed some glaring errors. The power play had been anemic, but showed signs of life last night. The forwards played with heart, skating and hitting all game, as they haven’t in the first three games.

    It’s a copout to mention injuries as a reason for losses, since every team needs to contend with them during a long season. Instead, it would be news if there were no injured Canadiens. Yet players like Ryan White and Mike Cammalleri are sorely missed for what they bring to the lineup. Those two would have been the antidote for guys like Shane O’Brien and Kyle Quincey facewashing and crosschecking our forwards in front of the net all night. Had Mike been there to convert on a couple more powerplays, and had Ryan brought more size and toughness to our lineup, the final score might have been different.

    The return of Andrei Markov also cannot come soon enough. His presence in the lineup will settle the defence down, bump Hal Gill and Jaro Spacek further down the depth chart where they belong, provide mentorship for the Three Nuevos Amigos (Yannick Weber, Alexei Emelin, Raphaël Diaz), and a living, breathing, skating template for PK to observe from the bench ( “Hey, Andrei just bounced a pass to Mathieu off the boards, and even if Matt didn’t corral it in, it didn’t end up in our net. Maybe my next shift I’ll try that instead of trying to deke my way through their entire lineup every single time I touch the puck….”)

    Paradoxically, I want the Canadiens to wait until Andrei is 101% ready before bringing him back, instead of 95%. We’re not neck and neck with another team for the President’s Trophy. Let’s use the regular season as an extended training camp during which we feed ice time to our youngsters while Andrei rehabs.

    I hate to beat on PK, because he works hard and tries harder, but he needs some coaching. He needs Mr. Ladouceur or Pearn to sit down with him in the video room and show him what he’s doing on the ice, how it’s costing the team, and some video examples of what other players in the same situations do that is simpler and more effective. He has to understand that when you fake out a forechecking forward by pretending to pass then keeping the puck and stickhandling with it, it will work the first couple of times, or if you only do it once in a while, but when it becomes your go-to move you make yourself vulnerable to having your pocket picked, as he had his picked last night. He needs to know the situation, what the score is, who is teammates are on the ice and where they are, before he makes these decisions, and to vary his play. If a forechecker is aggressive, expecting him to try to rush the puck, and PK beats him with a simple pass, it’s just as good as if he’d stickhandled past him. It also make him more effective the next time he’s up against that forechecker, who will be leery to commit one way or another.

    I’m not going to panic, since I’m not expecting the Canadiens to waltz to the Stanley Cup. Instead, I think this year is one we will use to build toward a legitimate run soon. We can live with a slow start to the season, as the youngsters develop. There were a lot of positives yesterday. The trio of Weber, Emelin and Diaz did some good work, and logged some serious minutes, which they need to improve. Max Pacioretty was inspired, after a couple of listless games. Travis Moen plays with determination and seems to want to silence the naysayers. Lars Eller made me sit up and take notice, which I haven’t done since he got here from St. Louis.

    ———————————
    How about it NHL? No fighting, just hockey?

    http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/

  42. Sal says:

    Three observations about Price:

    1) Glove hand is low. Against Calgary and again last night.

    2) He is making the first move, which, for a goalie, is sacrilgious.

    3) He’s deep in his net.

    Just saying…these are habits I thought he got away from last year, so hopefully they get addressed soon.

    Sal from the Hammer


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