About last night …

There’s not much to add to Quick Hits.

In raising their road record to 19-19-1 – worst among 16 current playoff teams, but at least it’s .500 – your Montreal Canadiens got a giant monkey off their not-so-broad backs.

No matter what happens in Philadelphia and Carolina today, the Canadiens will wake up in sixth-place on Monday morning.

They’ll go back to practice and get ready for Chicago … with a pretty good idea of what has to be done to win the final home of the regular season.

The Canadiens played an almost-perfect road game in New Jersey. They held the home team to 21 shots, an easy outing for Carey Price’s team record-tying 70th appearance.

And, crucially, they didn’t let the Devils sore first. New Jersey had three shots in the first period, and one of them was Mattias Teddenby’s penalty. Thanks the goalpost for keeping that one out and maintaining an 0-0 score long enough for Mathieu Darche to get the Canadiens on the board.

If Tedenby scores and Jacques Lemaire’s guys ramp up the defnsive style for which they are justly famous and Martin F. Brodeur stops everything …

Well, it could have happened. But it didn’t.

The Canadiens were able to take advantage of a tired team that had played in Philadelphia on Friday night. Jacques Martin rolled four lines and got solid play from each, save for some defensive weakness by the David Desharnais line that allowed the Devils to spoil Price’s bid for another shutout.

Other than that brief flurry of New Jersey dominance, the Canadiens played Jacques Martin’s system to perfection.

Forwards got back deep to help clear the zone, and the puck moved up-ice through short, high percentage passes.

Darche re-energized Scott Gomez and Brian Gionta, who had their best game since Max Pacioretty was hurt. The captain had two assists for the first time since mid-November.

Michael Cammalleri’s seven shots on goal were the most since he got eight in a game in Ottawa on Oct. 16. Tomas Plekanec went 11-4 on faceoffs and played at top speed for 18:25, his energy level benefiting from only 1:09 of penalty-killing duty. Andrei Kostitsyn was in Martin F.’s face on P.K. Subban’s power-play goal.

Benched in Carolina, Lars Eller outskated the Devils all night and was on the ice when the siren sounded.

P.K.’s goal was his 13th, four more than any other rookie Dman in the league. He and Hal Gill did exemplary shut-down work on New Jersey’s top forwards.

No Devil had more than two SoG. The invisible Ilya Kovalchuk had one.

Controlling Jonathan Toews won’t be as easy.

But the Canadiens will be riding – WOO-HOO! – a one-game winning streak when the face the Stanley Cup champs.

•  •  •

Some good stuff from the Commentariat:

From PeterD:

Like many here I have been in a funk these last few weeks wondering if the Habs would start getting their collective game together and finish the season on a role and with strength and not what we had seen last year by drifting in by the seat of their pants.

I liked the game plan tonight and how everyone came to execute and commit. Every player to a man was on their game…we chased the Devils with speed, passing, heads up plays and hitting.

Pouliot looked good – speed, agility, deft passing and stick work.

Eller is a speed freak – always pressuring the D and forcing turn overs in tight quarters along the boards…just love that guy and hope he is with us for many years to come.
And Ryan White…I love that kid tough as nails and can play – loved that he went after what’s his name when Sopel got dumped into Carey’s net…he is not afraid of anyone and will back up anyone of his team mates…hey Pierre and Jacques, lets keep this guy in the lineup OK?
PK Subban gave me a couple of fits when he did some dipsy doodles at their blueline and gave it up…but I still love the guy and with his skill, talent and speed and constant passion for the game he can make some mistakes and I will still love him…but come on PK shoot some more OK…loved his goal. I dream of PK and Markov on the Blue line next year…for full season…then add in Gorges and Wizi…a good start on our Defense for sure.
Gomez has been a favourite of mine to bash whenever he gives me an opportunity to bash him, and hey that has been a lot this season…but I gotta give him props when he plays with his head in the game and not up his a–. He came tonight with leadership, passion, skill and speed to burn…along with Gio and Darche they looked threatening every shift they were out there.
I can’t really say anything too good or bad about Mara and Sopel – maybe it is a good thing to not notice some guys if they are just playing steady shifts and not looking like a liability out there. I do think Martin should start cycling Weber back into the line up to get him in playing shape and keeping him there. He is a talented kid with speed and he has improved a lot this year. Yeah he’s not a big physical presence out there but he is a servicable D-man and he has skills, speed and can move the puck out of the zone with passing and speed. I would like to see Weber in the next game and let Sopel rest.

From Habitoban:

Some observations: Benny: a very sound game. Better net positioning, crisp passing, some creative offence, timely hitting – sadly though, staying out of the box translates into less robust play. Goals will come for Benny and Eller, but it may be next season. Mara: I like this pick-up more and more. He seems to be playing with more confidence and I find myself believing in him as well, although I will defer to those who know the position as to whether that is misplaced or not. Dezzy: I wasn’t convinced that he could play in the bigs given his size. He is slowly convincing me otherwise. White: a pleasure to watch someone who enjoys playing as much as he does. Looks like he’s just skating on outdoor Manitoba ice in January — of course, once your feet freeze and so you are feeling no pain. I think he brings a joyful spirit to the team that sometimes looks like it is coached by Vatican emissaries. I don’t know about the System, but four lines rolling…. That’s the Formula!

And from JF:

I got up this morning wishing the day and the game were over. I was sure I was going to see a repetition of last Saturday’s dismal effort against the Capitals. Instead, what I saw was an almost perfect game: lots of intensity, solid defence, guys going to the net, almost no penalties. Even so, with a 1-goal lead, I thought our missed chances would come back to haunt us. The two quick goals at the beginning of the third were an overwhelming relief, and the only flaw in that period was the bad shift by the Desharnais line which resulted in the Devils’ goal.

JM’s patience with Scott Gomez may finally be paying off. His line played a great game, and we may have seen why JM keeps Desharnais as a third-line centre. He does not have the brute strength to go up against the other team’s top line.

Mathieu Darche is the nearest thing we have at the moment to a replacement for Max Pacioretty. He does what Pacioretty does, and tonight he got the results.

It should be great for the team’s confidence to have finally solved Brodeur and Jacques Lemaire’s stifling system. Hopefully they can carry their solid play over into next week. When they execute JM’s system well, they’re tough to beat.


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  5. gp52 says:

    What i saw yesterday was a NJ team that was exhausted and made many mistakes, Now it s good that mtl is able to take advantage of another teams exhaustion and pull out out a win, but i wouldn’t say they played great(only 1-0 after 2 periods). Their play looked better when contrasted with Jerseys.
    we’ll see how good this team is when they play a hungry and well rested chicago team on tuesday.

  6. ths says:

    Dear Beloved Habs,

    We are writing to show our concern about how the other teams are roughhousing you and detracting from the skilled game.
    Your great little guys should be allowed to display their immense talents without fearing for their lives

    With love and Vive le Quebec Libre,

    The Calgary Flames

    P.S. Please beat Hawks Tues night.

  7. SeriousFan09 says:

    Just submitted Habs Future but my prospect pool of coverage is takin’ a hit, I’m projecting by the end of April I’m going to have to discontinue due to lack of material barring a deep run by the Bulldogs in the AHL playoffs. I’m down the KHL, half the junior prospects and NCAA Nationals wraps up this week.

    Been a fun ride and I will continue the feature next year, but giving you guys a heads-up, by June I may do a feature on who I’d like MTL to draft or just review who they draft.

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.

  8. ooder says:

    go check out the 3 stars on nhl.com
    and check out enroth’s save %
    GWG = game winning gionta!

  9. punkster says:

    Wow. Relatively civil and orderly conversations in here tonight. Amazing how a victory can cure, at least temporarily, the psychosis that follows every loss.

    Only one comment before I shut down. Some have mentioned that Boston has nothing to worry about by meeting the Habs in a series. I disagree. They’ll be overly confident and cocky and the Habs will use their speed to give them fits and nightmares and drive them to a level of frustration they’re never known.

    There. That thought should give me a good night’s sleep 🙂
    ***Subbang Baby!!!***

    • Bugs says:

      That’s not really “an ace in the hole” though, is it?
      It’s gonna take more than their overconfidence for us to beat’em, I reckon.
      I say we return to the source and blind them with speed and skill and speed and speed.
      Kung Fu is all about speed. Ask Jackie Chan, ask’m, go on and ask’m!

      Chillin like MacMillan, potty-boy says he’s L. B. Potter, esq.

      • vanderglenn says:

        hockey is a lot like kung fu

      • Clay says:

        I asked him (he lives in Shanghai, so I figured the burden fell on me). He said it’s more about mental toughness, but speed is important as well.
        Then he asked me how I got in his house, and phoned the police, who quickly came and hauled me away..
        I chose to make this post in lieu of my one phone call…
        The only interesting answers are those which destroy the questions. ~Susan Sontag

    • Bill says:

      I disagree. I think the one team the Bruins would NOT underestimate is the Habs. To do that, they’d have to forget just about everything that has ever happened to them prior to their last game against the Habs.

      The Habs have eaten the Bruins lunch time and time again: when they were supposed to, when they were not supposed to, just for fun when it was even.

      I think the B’s will be wary and vigilant, unless they are complete idiot neanderthals … oh waiiiittt … scratch all that, you’re right.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

    • habs001 says:

      mara,sopel,hammer,spacek,gill,picard these guys speed will give fits but not to the opposition…

  10. Habsone says:

    Great job Habs!!!

  11. observer says:

    cup champs the blackhawks were shutout at home by tampa bay tonight. if dallas wins later tonight, hawks when they play here on tues are in serious danger of dropping right out of the playoffs. then have to play st. louis the day after the habs game then a home and home with detroit to close out the year.

    • smiler2729 says:

      Blah blah blah, no commas, blah blah blah, keyboard diarrhea, blah blah blah, no one reads this crap, blah blah blaaaaahhhhhhh

      “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

      • Britton says:

        Actually, there was ONE comma… 😀
        Still. I agree. Although his posts of late have been, if not more intelligent, at least more human sounding as opposed to his I-don’t-think-it’s-possible-for-a-human-being-to-be-that-dumb-unless-it’s-on-purpose-esque posts he used to spew out on a regular basis.

        • smiler2729 says:

          The ramblings are tiring… and I don’t even read ’em.

          “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

        • HardHabits says:

          That’s because the so-called comedic geniuses here can’t figure out who his obscure hockey card avatars are.

          • Bill says:

            I cut that guy lots of slack, probably because I don’t read – much less respond – to anything he writes. But I like having him around because it shows how tolerant we all are for letting Leaf fans be regular posters on HIO. Kumbaya.

            Full Breezer 4 Life

          • Rob says:

            i actually sold that very card in University to pay off some credit card debts. Sold it for a cool $850 and regret it still to this day

            The Montreal Canadiens: sporting the best AND worst fans since 1909!

      • G-Man says:

        smiler gets ornery. Well done. 🙂

    • Steven says:

      Maybe their desperation will be their downfall 🙂

  12. smiler2729 says:

    My thoughts to the Schwartz family.

    Mandi, I never knew you until your illness was public but I’ll never forget you.

  13. TINMAN17 says:

    Anybody else impressed with Cammalleri’s effort last night? That little guy was diving all over the place for the puck. Great to see the desire, just gotta pot a few and get on a roll.

    Born and Bred in Enemy Territory (Boston).

    • 24 Cups says:

      Sorry, but Cammy has played like crap all year long.

      I want my $6M back.

      • ProHabs says:

        Agreed. Can’t think of one stretch of games this year that I have been impressed with Cammi. He is one of the players this year (along with Gomez and Laraque) who is robbing this team blind.

      • TINMAN17 says:

        I hear that, but what impressed me was finally seeing the hustle. I’ll take 5.5M back.

        Born and Bred in Enemy Territory (Boston).

      • WestHab says:

        I think the camster’s biggest problem is that he came back too early after his injury. He really focused on the Heritage classic here in Calgary. He was not ready and I think he should have sat another week. but if you get six mil I want some too.

      • blu3chip says:

        Cammy: 64 GP 44 PTS 6 mil
        Gionta: 79 GP 43 PTS 5 mil

        • Steven says:

          I wouldn’t look too deep into those stats. Most of Cammy’s points are off of assists, and it’s hard not to get assists when you have Pleky’s 20 or so and most of Kostitsyn’s 20 on your side.

          Gionta, on the other hand? Has carried the entire goal-scoring load of the line until Pacioretty came along.

      • vanderglenn says:

        I agree, and no accountability on his part either. Seems like a self involved whiner to me (not including his 13 goals last playoff)

    • WestHab says:

      Camy is a gamer. His only fault is that he came back too early after being hurt. He really wanted to play the Heritage Classic.

  14. Guy-Guy-Guy says:

    Looking away from the drama of the up and down play and into the hard numbers… I Googled ‘nhl playoff percentage’

    Habs have a .993 chance of making the playoffs as of this morning

    .77 chance of seeding 6th.

    Not too shabby. Habs should be in boston again in a few days to wrestle home ice advantage away from them. After that, anything can happen.

    • dicktracy says:

      Do you thinks there is any chance da bruins will be a bit overconfident?

      • WestHab says:

        are you kidding? against anybody but da Habs maybe. If we win it will be goaltending. Carey can beat tt.

      • TINMAN17 says:

        I do, I think they’re licking their chops to get us. Only, I think we win in 5. Thomas steals one and their regular season style of play (big,bad bruins) doesn’t work for them in the playoffs, no goons allowed time.

        Born and Bred in Enemy Territory (Boston).

        • WestHab says:

          I respect your courage. Easy enough being a Habs fan anywhere else.

          • TINMAN17 says:

            Westie, I’ve been in more kinds of crazy fights because sometimes dammit I don’t want to leave my hat in the car. Nothing boils the blood down here like the Habs and the Yankees. My 2 favorite teams. Most people just talk the talk, though and it ends there.

            Born and Bred in Enemy Territory (Boston).

  15. blu3chip says:

    Two more points (either one win or 2 OT/SO losses) and we are in!

  16. habsindepth says:

    If we haven’t realized this yet, that was Carey Price’s 70th game of the season. Kudos to this guy really, he has been the BACKBONE of the Montreal Canadiens this season. Had many critics to shut up.

    PK SUbban should be spending tons of time on the powerplay. The way his shot has improved over the season is commendable. I remember earlier in the season when Subban used to wind up forever before taking his big shot, and gave the netminder ample time to see the puck. Now, however, his shots come like bullets, his wind-up is much better, he just lets it go off his stick. Habs are doing somewhat of a better job screening the opposite netminder, and that always help. AK46 did an awesome job on PK’s goal. Hope this continues in future.

    Mathieu Darche is a bargain. An amazing bargain. I hope he gets a small raise at the end of the season.

    HiD Game review is up: “A solid road effort” http://bit.ly/hLLsmY
    Web: http://www.habsindepth.com – For the Fanatics
    Twitter: @habsindepth
    Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/hidpage

    • Bugs says:

      To be fair, the critics who say that the Priceberg doesn’t have the mental fortitude necessary to withstand the pressure of the playoffs haven’t shut up yet.

      Chillin like MacMillan, potty-boy says he’s L. B. Potter, esq.

      • larisalapointe says:

        To be fair, he has a 7th game shut-out against Philly in the playoffs.

        Critics huh? Do you even remember the names of the players that made up the rest of the team that didn’t have the mental fortitude or is this an honour only for the Priceberg?

        • Bugs says:

          No, he doesn’t. Edit your post.

          Chillin like MacMillan, potty-boy says he’s L. B. Potter, esq.

          • larisalapointe says:

            My bad, it was Boston… twice in the same series.

          • Bugs says:

            Okay. Boston.
            Now, who was the scoring “threat” for Boston when we finished 1st and they 8th? Murray? C’mon, Larisa, they had nothing. Julien had to put Kessel back in from the doghouse he was so desperate for offence, yes? The series SHOULDA ended in 5. But when Carey shanked that play with Lapierre that ended up in his net, he lost his mojo from that point.
            Game 7, he had an excellent 1st period. But we scored the only goal, and Boston had nothing left.
            We shoulda beaten Philly. We dominated every game except the last one. We hit more posts than Biron made saves, but Biron was better was better than the Kid by a loooong shot, “like mens against boys”, in the parlance of our times, cuz he MADE SAVES. Carey didn’t. I’m not making anything up here.
            That was THEN; let’s see NOW. So “those critics” can have their gobs shut too.

            Chillin like MacMillan, potty-boy says he’s L. B. Potter, esq.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            We also did a great job hitting Biron’s chest protector, team couldn’t score goals against a backup goaltender (a long-standing flaw for the team, rip apart Vezina candidates but choke against 3rd-stringers) and let themselves get run over by RJ Umberger playing the greatest hockey of his career.

            – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.

      • Clay says:

        I for one don’t claim to know if he has the mental fortitude. However, when (if?) he shows it is when I will be convinced he has arrived as an elite goalie.

        The only interesting answers are those which destroy the questions. ~Susan Sontag

        • larisalapointe says:

          So Clay if the team in front of him doesn’t deserve to win the series but he “steals” it anyways, is that mental fortitude?

          If so, he already did this vs Boston at 21 years of age.

          If he doesn’t do it this year but say, at 25, is that good enough?

          Playing 70 games and counting (most nights without a D), the kid has got to be tough especially in Montreal.

          • Bugs says:

            We can still SEE with our own eyes how well a goalie performs regardless of the rest of the team’s output.
            Same way we can see if a particular left-winger is playing well regardless of the other guys on his line.
            We’re just talkin, Larisa; no need to climb the battlements.

            Chillin like MacMillan, potty-boy says he’s L. B. Potter, esq.

          • larisalapointe says:

            It’s all in good fun Bugs, a good old hockey discussion. 😉

            And yes, we can see with our own eyes…the heck with the past, Price is hot this year. Good for our team.

            I like Pouliot too btw.

          • Clay says:

            I am not saying he has to win a cup (or even a series) with this very average team. I am saying he has to not collapse like he did in his last full series. And in that one, he folded like a cheap tent (see post by Bugs above). Here’s hoping it’s different this time.

            The only interesting answers are those which destroy the questions. ~Susan Sontag

          • larisalapointe says:

            3 years is a long time in a young athlete’s life. I truly believe the hardships of the past has only made him better. As this years’ experience can make him better no matter what the outcome this season.

            At the end of the day, I guess we all want the same thing; for the team to go very far in the playoffs!

      • larisalapointe says:

        I have to reply to you down here…sheesh.

        You make good points Bugs and yes Biron was a man and Price was a boy, really, in terms of age.

        The expectations of him were unreal…not so of the rest of the team.

        But Boston sucked is not a good reason to discredit him.

        I agree with your last sentence, Price is going to have to shut up the critics, all 10 of them, but if the team in front of him totally fails, don’t be blaming him for it all. And does he have to do all this proving this year, or does he have some leeway?

        • Bugs says:

          He’s proven that he can be consistent during the regular season and that he can make big saves to keep his team in the game. Only knock he has left, I think, is being prone to open the floodgates once he goes 3 down. Overall though, extraordinary performance, much better than I anticipated, total credit goes to him.
          But he’s done none of that in the playoffs, where and when it counts the most. I’m not making anything up here.
          Of course he “gets leeway”. If he didn’t, Auld would start the playoffs.
          Personally, with what I’ve seen so far, I’m not worried. I think he’ll play the way he’s played all year. That’s good enough for me.
          But if he can “elevate”? The way Halak did?
          Hooooo-wee, I think we can make more noise than last year. Cammy pottin a few wouldn’t hurt either. That’s just my opinion.
          But until that happens, “those critics” haven’t been proven wrong.

          Chillin like MacMillan, potty-boy says he’s L. B. Potter, esq.

    • ManApart says:

      Darche is an awesome depth player. I really like him. Just a great leader and an example of what a team player does. He also can get you 10- 15 goals a year. He absolutely must be resigned for next season. I think he’s very comparable to a Ryan Walter in his later years with the Habs.

    • emann_222 says:

      You hit the nail on the head with Darche.

      I remember in pre-season when everyone was saying he was the weak link that needed to go back to Hamilton … and I kept arguing that he was all heart, soul, and in definite need of remaining with the big club!

      He’s been a soft spoken grinder all year long – and we missed him during his injury. I wish more guys on this team played with the heart he does!!!

      Merci Mathieu.

      Visit me at http://www.bleedbleublancrouge.wordpress.com and http://www.thehockeywriters.com

  17. observer says:

    As at 7pm Monday April 4

    1 Philadelphia 79 46 22 11 103 – Max 109
    2 Washington 79 46 22 11 103 – Max 109
    3 Boston 78 44 23 11 99 – Max 107
    4 Pittsburgh 79 46 25 8 100 – Max 106
    5 Tampa Bay 79 44 24 11 99 – Max 105
    6 Montreal 79 42 30 7 91 – Max 97
    7 Buffalo 79 40 29 10 90 – Max 96
    8 NY Rangers 79 42 32 5 89 – Max 95

    9 Carolina 79 38 30 11 87 – Max 93
    10 Toronto 79 37 32 10 84 – Max 90

    NOTE – Habs will hold the tiebreaker(Reg Time Wins) over EACH ONE of the teams below them should they end up with a tie in points.

    Monday, April 4, 2011
    Boston at NY Rangers 7:30pm

  18. rocketsglare says:

    I say Habs are in with 94 pts. Somehow and someway the team must earn 3 out of a possible 6 remaining pts. to qualify for the playoffs. A doable task if the team plays
    like they did against the Devils. No time like the present starting this Tuesday night against the Blackhawks.

    • observer says:

      Even if Habs lost all 3 remaining games for arguments sake – Carolina would have to win 2 of their 3 remaining games and lose their other game in Overtime to beat out the Habs.

    • ManApart says:

      I think 91 points will prove to be the playoff number. If Canes win 2 out of 3 and Montreal loses all 3, they will be tied, but Habs take it on wins. So i believe if Montreal loses all their remaining games they’re in. I’m pretty sure Montreal wins 1 of their last 3, which guarantees playoffs. If they don’t, i”m fairly sure Carolina loses 1 of their last 3, which also guarantees playoffs. That Jersey win yesterday was massive.

    • light_n_tasty says:

      Well, seeing as the Habs will mathematically clinch at 93 pts, I suppose they only need 2 more points to clinch…(and that’s if Carolina wins the rest of their games)

  19. habs001 says:

    rangers have 3 games left all at home bos,atlanta,new jersey

    sabres 2 at home tb,flyers and columbus on the road

    canes 2 at home detroit,tb and atlanta on the road

    math wise if you finish between 6-8 you can still play one of 4 teams..

    • observer says:

      looks like 3 teams. philly, wash or bost. right now philly and wash are tied for #1 seed but philly has tiebreaker. boston has locked up #3 seed. so 7th and/or 8th get wash and/or philly and 6th gets boston.

      me – i know what happened 2 of those last 3 bruins meetings. id still rather see habs play boston – habs did beat them 4 other times this year.

  20. Captain aHab says:

    Why does everyone think it’s so hard for others on the Habs to understand what it takes to score goals?

    Darche comes in and GOES TO THE NET. AK SCREENS THE GOALIE BY PLAYING IN FRONT OF HIM (not to the side). Jeebus, this isn’t some unsolvable conundrum. It has to be lack of balls because it is certainly not hard to understand.

    • Maksimir says:

      I agree its frustrating… seems they routinely score goals when they do those things but seldom choose to.. like in that 3 string shutout run. Only guys who seem brave enough all the time to take the beating in front of the net is Darche & Moen…

  21. Maksimir says:

    Things are now pretty tight in the bottom 3 – Buf-NYR-Habs… our boys could easily end up in any of the last 3 slots 8-7-6 … Same as the top three… I don’t think we’ll know who they are playing until the end of the very last reg. game.

    Right now, judging on how the past two months have gone, I am thinking Pitts might be their best 1st round opponent.. unless Sid comes back.. then it becomes a lot harder.

    • naweed235 says:

      as horrible as this is going to sound a little PK hit on the kid is going to take care of the Sid Problem … If his concussion was anywhere as nearly serious as reported… obviously same applies to Max which is why I dont want him to come back this season…

  22. Nahlsy says:

    Habs’ magic number drops to 1, 1 more win or a Canes loss (in regulation) and they’re in.

    • observer says:

      The way Bettman has distorted the values – actually you’re right re: Carolina but the Habs magic number is 2 points. Any combination of 2 points attained by the Habs or of 2 points lost by the Hurricanes means Carolina cannot beat out the Habs. They also have a different magic number with NYR and with Buffalo.. Habs winning ties with all 3 of those teams if tied because of regulation wins.

      Leafs can no longer catch Buffalo or Montreal. They still have a very slight shot of finishing 8th over Carolina and NYR.

  23. OneTimer says:

    Carolina and Buffalo go to overtime, whoop dee doo.

  24. habs365 says:

    I would make one change in the line up….switch Pyatt and Pouliot

    After the playoffs. start looking for 8, 40-point players to go with Cammy-Pleks-Kostitsyn and Gionta and we would have a great chance at winning the cup….too many under .500 players on this team that’s why we’re looking at another 15-20 years to have a chance at winning a cup….

  25. WindsorHab-10 says:

    I hate those 3 point games. You know the Buffalo/Carolina game will be just that.

  26. wd40 says:

    So how long before Als Inside/Out has to change it’s name to Football Inside/Out?


  27. Steven says:

    Just survived elimination last year, and lost in the shootout to them this year.

    If any team can take out the Flyers, it might be the Rangers.

    A week ago, I was rooting for the Leafs, hoping they could slip into 8th and tire out the Flyers before the 2nd round, but forget about that now. Rangers could end their season in the 1st round. And the Rangers aren’t a team the Habs need to be afraid of, either.

    • ManApart says:

      The Habs should be afraid of any team in the playoffs. The book is out on how to beat the Habs and the Rangers with Torts would be very well prepared on what has to be done. I’m not sure who would win that series, but I definately wouldn’t feel comfortable.

      • Trisomy 21 says:

        What’s the book? play them when they’re tired and in the dumps? We won all but 1 of the season series, and you’re gonna tell me Tortarella only understood how the team plays in the last meeting?

        I’m not comfortable about facing any team either, but it’s because of our inconsistency, not that the other teams KNOW how to shut the habs down. Knowing how and being able to do execute are two separate things.

        • ManApart says:

          I think it’s fairly obvious that Montreal has trouble with an aggressive, physical, forecheck, that takes advantage of the slow defenseman. Also Montreal has a lot of trouble clearing the front of the net when big bodies go there. The Rangers are pretty big and physical when they want to be and do have team speed. As the Flyers did last year, it isn’t all that difficult to keep Montreal’s attackers to the outside. Smack those little forwards around a little and they are very hesitent to head to the net 5 on 5. They also can’t forecheck for shit.

          Regular season means nothing. when a team faces another team in a 7 game series, the coaching and game planning is much more prominent and is also followed much more closely. You are right though in saying it’s one thing to know what to do and quite another to actually do it.

          My main point was really to say don’t be so confident in the playoffs, no matter who you face. funny thigs can happen, like Montreal showed last season.

  28. SeriousFan09 says:

    And that’s it for half our prospect pool in junior hockey. Jarred Tinordi, Brendan Gallagher and Morgan Ellis’s teams have been eliminated from the post-season.

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.

    • Thomas says:

      Hey Robert, great work with your blog about all our prospects, very good reading material.

      I have a question about Avitsin…whats going on with him? I was pretty excited to read all the scouting reports from when we picked him up, and when he came over. From what I understood he had some really good potential. So far this year he hasn’t really produced…I was at the Bulldogs game last week against the Heat, and he was awful, floating around, not skating hard, generally looked very dis-interested on all that was happening.

      Have you heard anything recent about this kid, or whats going on with him?

      Thanks alot.

      • SeriousFan09 says:

        Some of it’s an adaptation issue, going from INTL ice and the different style in Russia to pro-level NA hockey plus as a skinny 6’2″ 19-year old, he’s not physically ready for the AHL. Most of the time teams try and get these guys to play a year or two in the junior leagues like Sergei Kostitsyn and Yannick Weber did. Avtsin I guess wanted a pro contract before he’d leave the KHL. He hasn’t been getting good linemate assignments either but that’s due to a lack of scoring depth on HAM that’s been ongoing all season since MTL keeps tapping their hotshots. I think he’s out of his depth a bit in the AHL and would be doing a lot better if he’d come to play for the MTL Juniors who own his CHL rights. Frustration may have set in with him, not getting much ice time, when he partly left to come over here because he was an under-10 minute player in the KHL, perhaps he figured it would be easier to hold a higher spot in the lineup.

        – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.

    • Steven says:

      How were their playoff performances?

  29. JohnBellyful says:

    Hey, Punkster, Bugs and other HIO posters who love highbrow music, the Sony Centre For The Performing Arts in Toronto will showcase the Warner Brothers Looney Tunes this Saturday. While the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony performs the music, the classic animated shorts will be projected on the big screen, including What’s Opera, Doc? and The Rabbit of Seville. Thought you might want to jet in for the 2 p.m. or 9 p.m. show.

    • punkster says:

      Good catch there JB. I recently heard the K-W Symphony’s lead trumpet, Larry Larson, on a CBC2 program and am impressed with his clarity and tone, a bit stronger and darker than standard lead players (maybe influenced by Arturo Sandoval as I’m sure you’ll agree). Wish I could make it just to hear Larson. In the mean time, here’s the link to the show with a quick taste of the music.


      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

  30. samTHEman says:

    I think Carolina will make the playoffs at the expense of Buffalo. If Miller can`t play in the most important game this season, a possible do-or-die 4 point game, that gives an idea of how serious his injury is. Doesn`t look good for the Sabres. Besides, Imo Carolina has a better chance of upsetting Philly in the 1st round.

  31. Bill says:

    I’m sure someone posted this while I was out, but here’s the Globe and Mail’s account of man games lost to injury this year:


    Habs are only 17th in MGL/G. Kind of makes that injury excuse everyone makes look like what it is, which is … well, uh, an excuse. The Habs are middle-of-the-pack for dealing with injuries this year, basically an average injury year.

    Now sure, one of our injuries was Markov for the wholse season, but if you look at what some other teams have been through – Pittsburgh, Vancouver – it puts things in perspective.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      Quality of player lost to injury should always be measured in these charts. Daymond Langkow missing over 70 games and Raitis Ivanans missing the year with CGY doesn’t measure up to the loss of Andrei Markov. Same goes for FLA missing Byron Bitz and Mark Cullen all year, James Sheppard + Josh Harding in MIN.
      Obviously VAN and PIT have felt the pinch but we all know they are much better teams and some players are much, much more important than others. Look at PHI, they seem lost without Pronger actually doing the job of leading the team that the snotty punk Richards can’t do himself.

      I think a better stat would be to take the average last 5 seasons of a team’s injured players, calculate contributions in an injury-free year and than add that up. Probably have some different results.

      – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.

      • Matt H says:

        But what about Minnesota missing Gui Latendresse? No wonder they struggled this year without that superstar in the lineup. Put another 40-45 goals on the wing in Minny and that’s a playoff team.

      • WestHab says:

        has any other team lost their top 2 Dmen for as many games? I have not checked that out but I dbout it.

        • ManApart says:

          Why do people keep insisting Gorges is our 2nd best Dman? If gorges is your 2nd best Dman, your team has a big problem. PK, Hammer are definately better and Spacek is about even. I personally think Spacek is better, but that’s argueable. Gorges is a heart and soul guy and a great PK man, but let’s not get carried away with him being our 2nd best dman.

      • Da Hema says:

        I think another point to add, in addition to the value and worth of the player(s), is the position area. The Habs have had an unusually high number of injuries to the defence, which was already a position of some vulnerability for this team.

      • showey47 says:

        I agree,its quality vs quantity. Losing a 1st liner/first pairing dman for 5 to 10 games is worse then losing a 3rd/4th liner for an entire season. Gotta give kudo’s for bylsma though for doing what he has done minus crosby/malkin,not to mention staal. That’s why he is my candidate for coach of the year.

      • ManApart says:

        Doubtful. Markov’s loss is major and Gorges is a good player (although overrated in this town) but that’s about it. You look at Wash missing Green and Semin for huge chunks. In Detroit Datsyuk has been out a ton as well as many others. Chicago with Kane. Pittsburgh, Buffalo with Roy and now Miller, Vancouver with many. Now LA. St Louis was killed. Missing their top line for a long stretch. Pronger in Philly. Getzlaf in Anaheim missing a chunk. Savard in Boston. PArise and others in NJ. and much, much more secondary players like Gorges for all these teams and teams I didn’t mention. I think it is quite accurate, that Montreal’s injury woes are pretty middle of the pack. The injures are just an excuse, that half the league has more of a right in using.

        • SeriousFan09 says:

          Philly with their stacked offensive roster and defence gets to use missing Pronger as an excuse? Please. It’s actually inexcusable they have fumbling around so much in the games when Pronger wasn’t in the lineup. A team that deep shouldn’t live and die on one player. PIT has been missing 2 of the 5 most talented forwards in the world, the offensive core of their team with no exaggeration for a while (3 months in Sid’s case) and are still only 3 points behind them. Washington and Detroit are deeper teams than MTL, we all know this, it’s a little easier to keep going when you have Zetterberg when Datsyuk is out. Vancouver a deeper team as well and throughout their season has had their offensive core so while defence has suffered, they’ve managed to maintain the goals support that if Price enjoyed it, he’d be leading the league in wins by a wide margin.

          Chicago has 1 more point than MTL, with 3 less regulation wins. It seems missing a top player caused them some trouble, much like MTL did as their roster has been reduced from Cup Contenders tatus. Buffalo’s behind us because their scoring is thin and losing Roy was a blow. New Jersey struggled partially so much because Parise had been their offensive superstar for a couple years and had trouble adapting without him. We know Montreal isn’t a top team, but having a Top-10 NHL defencemen would have meant a 100-point season this year, if you think Markov couldn’t have kicked up some offence here and there while closing some defensive holes of course…

          – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.

          • ManApart says:

            My point is that many teams have had it worse than the Canadiens. Probably half the league. A lot of them are deeper, so they can pick up the slack better, but that’s Gainey and Gauthier’s fault. I’m just saying blaming injuries, unless you’re completely hammered, is just an excuse for being a losing team. If every team in the league had 0 injuries, then they would all be improved. so bring Markov back as well as every other injured player and things would be the same as they are now. There’s no what ifs in hockey, there’s only what is.

  32. Bill says:

    Man, why won’t those Hurricanes just DIE? If they lose just ONE more game the Habs need only 1 point in their last three games to clinch. But they’re on a three-game roll and looking good. Being the healthiest team in the NHL helps I guess … but come on and LOSE already!

    Full Breezer 4 Life

  33. HardHabits says:

    So WTF! Is the parade back on?

  34. habsfan0 says:

    Rangers win. What they’re singing in Toronto now.

  35. habs001 says:

    it is still amazing that the habs are 6th in the east while having the 22nd best road record in the nhl and 25th in scoring…has a team with these two combinations ever made the playoffs?..

  36. Bugs says:

    Lookin at the standings. Can’t go up anymore; can only go down. Boston looms unavoidable.
    We may have won the season series but no doubt they’re heading in with a psychological boost we woulda preferred they not have at the moment.
    So put your affairs in order, make peace with your loved ones, record your final testament, strap on the explosives and let’s try and take as many with us as we can, shall we?

    Chillin like MacMillan, potty-boy says he’s L. B. Potter, esq.

  37. 24 Cups says:

    Rangers win in a shootout and now have 89 points.

    I’d like to see Carolina win tonight so that they have 88 points along with Buffalo.

    Everyone would have three games left and our chances of finishing 6th would be pretty decent.

  38. ProHabs says:

    Did the Devils throw the game last night. Am I the only one who found it very weird that Lemaire did not pull Brodeur with 1 or 2 minutes left in the game to try and get a couple of goals to tie up the game.

    • NoTinFoilCups says:

      You’re definitely not the only one wondering. It was downright odd. I thought we were going down ice for a sure empty netter and whoa there’s Marty F. himself.

  39. EricInStL says:

    Very good and exciting OT period.

    Will Torts put Gaborik in the shootout ?

  40. habstrinifan says:

    Canes lose tonight, boys will have HUGE incentive to WIN Tuesday night.

    Canes lose = 3 games left with max 92 points. Alll habs need then is one point on Tuesday.

    Wary though cause Canes are hot 3 wins n row, 7-3 in last ten,

  41. habstrinifan says:

    There are NO CAP issues during playoffs. For example the Rangers could recall Redden to help in the playoffs without worrying about cap space.

    My question.

    Does anyone know if an NHL team can call up ANY player from AHL or JUNIOR ranks or COLLEGE for playoffs. Teams used to be able to do that. I know there are rules like the ’emergency call up rule’ and rules dependent on playoffs schedule of the ‘minor’ leagues team.

    I was just wondering if we can make any call ups just to have them on hand and practise with the team.

    Say for example Yemelin (??) decided he wants to come over in next week or so can we ‘call’ him up.

    • habstrinifan says:

      Wouldnt it be cool to have Markov and Max Pac back for Ottawa game. I am DECIDING that it WILL HAPPEN. To heck with real life.

    • PeterD says:

      I think since Yemelin was under contract in Europe this season that he would have to first sign a contract with Montreal and then would have to clear re-entry waivers??? At which point we might lose him to another team. Not sure about that though because he wasn’t previously an NHL player playing overseas…anyone know the ruling on Euro players coming forhte first time?

  42. novahab says:

    Well it looks like the Rangers will win this and if the Canes win in over time the Habs willl need to win 2 of their last 3 games. No Miller time and even if the Canes win it outright the Habs Will need to win 2 of 3. I sure Hope last night was not just a tired team giving up on the season. The Habs will need their A game to have a shot at the Hawks and then the Sens and the Leafs will love to beat them.

    • habstrinifan says:

      I went and did the math… didnt realize it’s so close. But if Canes lose today and we get one point in next 3 games I think we are in based on wins cause we will be tied with Canes with 92 points but ahead in wins… even if Canes wins all three AFTER today and we only pick up 1 point.

      If Canes wins today in then it becomes even dicier because even in losing Buffalo doesnt really lose ground if calamity happens for us.

      So let’s hope for a Canes loss today. Other teams are on bubble but Canes is furthest away so focus on them.

    • 24 Cups says:

      Before today’s games, we had a 99% chance of making the playoffs.

  43. novahab says:

    The Flyers are a mess with out Pronger he does the same for them as he did for the Oliers. He a goon, a cheap shot artist but he gets away with it and he’s good. As far as Mr.respect goes he’s a joke and is only effective as a support player he is no leader.

    • observer says:

      THEY ARE IN A MESS WHEN THEY DON’T TRY – LIKE TODAY! Sure have been winning without pronger lately who has missed over 30 games this year.

      completely outplayed outskated, out hit rangers for first 18 minutes today, then lost all their energy and started the old hockey fix, dont clear the zone just throw the puck back to the opponents d-men at the point or softly shoot it off the boards to them – you know likehabs kept doing in the blowout fixes when they didnt try.

      todays bettman nhl and the gambling interests within the league.

      • EricInStL says:

        I’m not sure about your gambling angle. If you said the fix was in for US based teams to win the Cup then I would agree….

        Not enough $$$ coming in to Hockey gambling to do anything.

        Both footballs are the ones to watch in terms of fixing.

  44. RGM says:

    If anybody’s going to be at Tuesday’s home finale, be sure to give Carey some props and a nice rousing “MVP!” chant or two. 🙂

    Carey Price is All Hart! http://on.fb.me/CP31Hart
    Go Habs Go!

  45. mrhabby says:

    reading kamal panesar..

    the silent hand of gainey.

    he speaks to kovy2 down by the river and kovy not retained.
    he speaks to SK sent to hamilton then traded.
    he speaks to Gomez…will gomer be eventually dispatched.

  46. TINMAN17 says:

    Great win last night, play of the game : AK screens Brodeur. Bring on the B’s, Habs in 5.

    Born and Bred in Enemy Territory (Boston).

  47. smiler2729 says:

    I wouldn’t want to be a New York Rangers fan right now.

    Just sayin’ is all.

    “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

    • observer says:

      why? it looks like flyers are purposely trying to throw this game today! the same tactics habs used in the fixes the last few weeks. i mean dont ever try to clear your zone by shooting the puck out into the very open space but just lob that puck back to the d-men on the points or softly off the boards to them.

      habs last night a diff team than the ones who didnt try at all in those 4 losses allowing 6 or more goals against 3 teams car, nyr and bost who habs beat the other 10 games this year.

      this is vegas bettman’s crooked league and his crooked refs too when they are the method for other games.

    • observer says:

      “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs

      Starting next year it sure will be!

      • smiler2729 says:

        Yeah whatever that means…

        Are you like this on purpose?

        “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

        • observer says:

          posted that in first period. flyers are in the tank LIKE HABS were in those fixes when they did not try. thats why flyers fans were booing before the flyers set up the rangers shorthanded 2nd goal to put nyr in the lead.

      • _Habsoloutly_ says:

        Gauthiers team = PLAYOFFS!

        Burkes team = NO PLAYOFFS!

        Starting next year though the leaves are gonna be the best right? hahahahahahahahahahaha
        you really lead a sad existence don’t you?

        • observer says:

          this year – i said long ago though leafs are making a good run they wont make it THIS YEAR. Burke has set the 3rd full year of his to be their first big year. NEXT SEASON!

      • ZepFan2 says:

        No, I’m pretty sure you’re a laffs fan now.

        Welcome to the newer NHL: The National Head-shots League.

        • observer says:

          i also think islanders might be a playoff team next year. and thought tampa bay would be this year. and think washington is the best in the east again. i know dimwit airheads think “their team” is always the best and always will win the championship. you see that is where i differ from you airheads and am happy i dont think like you.

          • ZepFan2 says:

            What does that have to do with you being a laffs fan pretending to be a Habs fan?

            Also, you “think”? When?

            Welcome to the newer NHL: The National Head-shots League.

  48. Ian Cobb says:

    There was talk below about 30 goal scorers. Under Martin’s system, 20 goal scorer is high. So if we had 6 twenty goal scorers, I would take that in a heart beat.

    • observer says:

      under martin’s system a cup has NEVER been won!

      • smiler2729 says:

        Neither has one ever been won under Ron Wilson’s system or Vigneault or Boucher or Boudreau or Julien or Sutter or McLellan or so on and so on…

        I think you just like hearing the sound of your keyboard tapping.

        “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

        • observer says:

          gauthier and martin have probably 50 to 60 years of failure between them. this is boudreaus first team. wilson ? i never liked him. i thought he was terrible and stupid in san jose. compare martin to winners! compare habs to winners not leafs – who cares!

          • Tremblant Habs Fan says:

            Don’t you always go on about Gainey too? Doesn’t he have a few cup rings as player and GM!

      • ZepFan2 says:

        You forgot to add the word, yet, at the end of your sentence.

        Welcome to the newer NHL: The National Head-shots League.

        • observer says:

          ever is the word. actually forever is a better choice,

          • ZepFan2 says:

            When you’re not a fan of the team, yeah.

            Don’t worry, you’ll have all of next season to cheer for your real team.

            Welcome to the newer NHL: The National Head-shots League.

  49. 1010 says:

    Big win last night but the scoring drought that has hit the team has not turned the corner yet.
    Our forwards: Only one player – without the last name DARCHE- has scored a goal in the last six games( not counting AK’s 75 footer into an empty net).
    That would be Cammy against the Canes.
    Low scoring group indeed.
    Here’s hoping they’re saving it for the playoff.

    GO HABS…

    • observer says:

      cammaleri is showing signs of breaking out real soon. had a lot of good chances where he just missed last night, when he gets his scoring eye back he will be on fire.

      • smiler2729 says:

        Ever heard of proper sentence use? Punctuation? Spelling? Capitals to start sentences and for people’s names?

        It’s hard to read your crap let alone take it seriously.

        “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

        • Chris Roy says:

          You forgot a comma: “It’s hard to read your crap, let alone take it seriously.”

          I’m all for best practices where language is concerned but why the pettiness?

          • Britton says:

            Actually, you could use brackets:
            “It’s hard to read your crap (let alone take it seriously)”
            Or like so:
            “It’s hard to read your crap! Let alone take it seriously…”

          • Dunboyne Mike says:

            Or if there was only a little crap, and you wanted to mock it here but then read it thoroughly in private and in your own time:

            “It’s hard to read your craplet; alone, take it seriously.”

  50. Ian Cobb says:

    Other than Montreal players. Who else brought us out of our seats?

    Bobby Hull and Bobby Orr. Gordie Howe! and a Russian player in the 60′s. Can anyone remember his name for me?

  51. dhenry1234 says:

    I know this is not Hockey or habs related, but as some of you may know, tonight is Wrestlemania. Is anyone aware of a link to a stream for this event tonight


    Found a good site in case anyone else wants to watch the event.

    • dre1744 says:

      If you smellllllllllllalallalallalallalalla what the Rock is cook’n!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Bugs says:

      This ain’t hockey-related either but if any’o’yehs get a chance to catch “Reign of Assassins”, don’t miss it. Michelle Yeoh in FANTASTIC form.
      If you liked the visual splendor and sad introspection of “Crouching Tiger”, then it’s “House of Flying Daggers” but if you liked the noiresque cool-bad-guy-with-a-mission vs impossible-relationship-of-the-good-guys part of “Crouching Tiger”, then it’s “Reign of Assassins” all the way.
      Minimal chit-chat, no zen, no lovey-dovey-let’s-talk-about-it sappy crap; all story. Brisk pace. Bad guy rocks. And again: Yeoh steals every scene. Charismatic leading lady; no one glares like she does. The young hottie assassin ain’t bad either…
      Swordplay is suPOIB.
      Automatically made it to my Top 10 Asian movies of all time. Not “Chinese”; ASIAN, baby. This flick was all that.

      Chillin like MacMillan, potty-boy says he’s L. B. Potter, esq.

      • dhenry1234 says:

        No Asian movies for me because of fear of Super Aids

      • Say Ash says:

        Better than Ninja Assassin?

        • Bugs says:

          Oh yeah. No contest. “Ninja” is a CG blood-letting slobber-knocker. You’re expecting crap and it’s a little better. But you don’t need to see it again.
          “Reign” is “Crouching Tiger” wthout the 1hr 10min of love story in the desert. Here, you’re expecting something GOOD, and it’s DAMN good. You’ll wanna see it again.
          Plus, Michelle Yeoh’s in it. I mean, c’mon. She wouldna been caught dead in “Ninja Assassin”; of course her movie’s better.

          Chillin like MacMillan, potty-boy says he’s L. B. Potter, esq.

  52. in habs we trust says:

    The promblem i have with the goal scored by the devils,was that JM put DD line out for a defensive face-off. Lemaire made a late change and put out his top line.Boone put the blame on DD line when in fact he could have put the blame on a bad line call by JM?

  53. habs001 says:

    while a long shot pitts 2 points behind flyers for division …they also have played one more game..

  54. habs001 says:

    hoping for a flyer win…for 6th better that sabres lose but for playoff security better that canes lose…only the top 5 teams in the east have more points than 8th in the west….

    • dre1744 says:

      it doesn’t really matter about the east west point differance as long as you make it to the dance. Plus the east don’t have those 2 crap teams the oilers and the Avs!!!!!

    • blu3chip says:

      I don’t think one can say West is better than East based on only points.
      There are lots of factors that may explain why West gets more points when facing East, one of them is time zone.
      Players are used to playing at 7pm to 7:30pm. When they are visiting the teams in the West, they play at 9pm to 10:30pm.

  55. blu3chip says:

    I just laugh whenever people give all credits to the goalpost when the puck hit the post and out.
    I guess they assume that without the goalie in net, the shooter will still hit the post and can’t score.
    Chances are, the goalie gave the shooter so little room to aim, the shooter must target close to the edge of the post, hence increasing the chance of the puck hitting the post, or missing the net entirely.
    Thanks to the post, yes, but lets not forget about the goalie.

    And what’s with the “WOO-HOO! – a one-game winning streak”, is that supposed to be funny? Or sarcastic? I’m lost…

    • smiler2729 says:

      Yeah man! I’m glad you bring this up cuz I’m a goalie and when the shooter hits that post it’s because I gave him nothing to shoot at.

      “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

      • dre1744 says:

        and once in awhile you thank the posts cause the guy snapped a shot past you that had you cleanly beat only to hear the ping of puck off metal!!!!!! hahaha

    • Tremblant Habs Fan says:

      Yes, and I’m glad that it was pointed out that containing Toews won’t be easy, because I thought it would be a walk in the park, compared to beating Brodeur in NJ yesterday as, we were well warned that it was going to be a near impossible task.

    • savethepuck says:

      As a former goaltender, I really appreciate your comment . I hated when people said I was lucky because a shot hit the post.

      • NoTinFoilCups says:

        Hey, a shot off the post is not a shot on goal. Therefore the shooter missed the net. No luck involved whatsoever. Just bad shooting and the goalie giving little to shoot at!

  56. showey47 says:

    One thing boone about your recap,the devils played at home against the flyers on friday night, not in philly.

  57. MathMan says:

    The Habs’s magic number vs. Carolina is 3, New York 4, Buffalo 5.

    This means there’s a chance they will clinch the playoffs before their next game on Tuesday! The Rangers play twice before then, a tough two-in-two that sees them facing Philly and Boston. Should they lose both in regulation (unlikely, but possible) then they would be unable to catch the Habs, who would clinch at least 8th place.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      Other than Mtl. players. Who else brought us out of our seats?

      Bobby Hull and Bobby Orr. Gordie Howe! and a Russian player in the 60’s. Can anyone remember his name for me?

      • habstrinifan says:

        copied from googling the following names.. do you mean any of them or you meant aplayer who played in NHL but grew up russian?

        Valery Kharlamov – played from 1967 through 1981

        Anatoly Firsov – played from 1958 through 1974

        Vsevolod Bobrov – Played from 1946 through 1957,

        Valery Vasiliev – played 1967 through 1982.

      • habstrinifan says:

        OMG how can I forget Bobby Orr.. maybe because he played against the habs when I was ‘becoming’ in love with hockey and had no time for any but the CH.

        But yes… he is on the list for sure. My Bad!

  58. habstrinifan says:

    I was lying in bed in the type of euphoria which makes it hard to go to sleep. Had just finished watching the RDS express and the CBC after hours replay.( And had even done an hour ‘workout… 45 minutes riding the stationary bike and some great abs work and 30 push-ups.. not bad for 63 year old geezer eh).

    So as I was saying I was lying in bed trying to come down and go to sleep when I thought about P.K’S DIPSY-DOO AND ORGASMS.

    Now Now boys… get your dirty minds outta dem there gutters. I MEAN HOCKEY ORGASMS.

    You know what I mean. When you watch moves/skating by certain players and just blow your mind wth excitement or plain good feeling.

    So I was thinking of players who DO IT for me? I only speak of players I have seen play in or near their PRIME. I am sure someone like the Rocket or Beliveau would have qualified too.

    Number one of course is GUY. He was born to have stick in his hand with a puck at the end of it and skates on. (and a CH on his shirt).
    Just pure poetry.

    Others in no order: Larry Robinson/Stephane Richer/Yvan Cornoyer.

    And now P.K.

    Not many non-habs have ever brought me to hockey orgasm.

    Gretzky was great but for some reason I just couldnt. I would take him home to DAD but he just didnt do it for me.

    Yzerman did. And of course Mario.

    Care to let us know who have brought you to hockey orgams. Come on…. we have all ad it…. no?

    • Bill J says:

      I dunno – Price has his moments, Roy had many… Defense can be as amazing to watch sometimes 😉

      As for offensive talent’s – OV8 can be pretty damned amazing.

      Mario in a CH would have been a dream come true.

      Yzerman, not so much…

      • habstrinifan says:

        Yep Roy had many. Price is getting there. OV .. guess I dont really see enough of.

        Yzerman I would put in GUY’s class for on ice beauty when he wanted to take the puck and not share it.

  59. habs365 says:

    you can’t send someone down when it’s management’s screw up by taking him off the Rangers hands, they wouldn’t look very good would they. it will never happen.

  60. WestHab says:

    Not too long ago I had totally given up on ak46. But I think he’s been one of the best forwards since the chara thing. Ak has been alot more diversified. Most of the time he used to just look for the shot. Now I belive he usually leads the team with hits. Getting in Mary f B.’s face last night was a key element to that goal.

    Looks like Subban has found his shot, those goals are starting to come from the back end again.

    Looking forward to Spaceck’s return, any news when that might happen?

  61. habstrinifan says:

    Where is everyone. A great habs win .. a nice game.. Darche power forward impression… Gionta’s and Darche’s classic ‘go to the net’ demonstration. (Not the usual ‘go to the net fakery’ we see from the team where guys stand in the crease and hope for deflections from way off point shots but true ‘go to the net with stick down’ on the rush plays.). And add to that a goal by the ‘future’ (yeah I said it) and enough dipsy-dooing by same to leave me orgasmic like when I use to watch GUY or Richer.

    So where is everyone. Thire shouldbe over 500 comments after last night’s game.

  62. habstrinifan says:

    Lets see if this works!

    OK bit thE bullet and re-avatared. Playoff-ready NOW! Hope you noticed I am bringing some ‘playoff muscle’ to the line up. If only I had Kostopolous gonads …. oh well!

  63. wd40 says:

    Habs in 6th, 3 games left, and not a 30-goal scorer to be found. Given the injuries the Habs have had to deal with this season, I have to give credit to Habs coach, Mr. Personality. Say what you will, he knew how to make lemonade with the lemons he was given this season.

    • 24 Cups says:

      Forget 30 goals, we will only have two players over the 50 point mark (and one of them came over in a trade). There’s also a chance that we may not even have one 60 point player.

      Now you know just how valuable Carey Price has been this year.

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        There probably won’t be any 50 goal scorers this year and the leader in points has 100 (D Sedin). There will probably be only three 40 goal scorers, and between 22 and 28 or so 30-goal scorers

        Compare this to 2007 when the scoring title winner had 120 pts (Crosby), and there were 7 players with 100 pts or more. Two players had 50 goals (Lecavalier and Heatley), ten players had 40 or more goals, and 42 players had 30 or more.

        Scoring is down, and intimidation, thuggery and concussions are up.

        The NHL sucks again.

      • wd40 says:

        Price was goldt, Jerry, GOLDT.

    • MathMan says:

      Oh-so-mighty Chicago won the Cup last year with exactly one 30-goal scorer (Kane, and he had exactly 30 goals).

    • Tremblant Habs Fan says:

      The Leafs, Blue Jackets, Huricanes, and Flames all have 30 goal scorers, the Isles have 2 of them, Yeah!!!

  64. twilighthours says:

    Higginsrs, totally afree

  65. dre1744 says:

    As montreal sits right now and don’t get 1 more point all year they have a 86.7% chance of making the playoffs

  66. jimmy shaker says:

    Couple things here tonight…..first, great win and great game by darche! 2nd, Price will get the hawks on Tues, with Auld going on Thurs. vs the sens. In a perfect world, the boys win tues and thurs, allowing Auld to play saturday vs the leafs in an all but meaningless game for both teams, as long as carolina, buffalo and the rangers do what they’re supposed to do. 3rd, if my last stanza comes to pass, that means carey will finish the season with 69 starts, which is one off the 70 starts that I believe is a dangerous number for a tender to have played in the regular season, and have aspirations for a long playoff run in the spring. It rarely happens that way, (tender playing 70+ regular season games and going deep into the playoffs) so please boys win tues and thurs, so auld can get in there next saturday too. 4th, can’t believe subban and gill are -7 each for the season to date….that surprised me. Spacek and darche leading with +8 and +7 respectively. Gomer right at the bottom with -14. 5th…what happens when spacek comes back? I thought most likely mara leaves and makes room for spacek, but lately I’m thinking it should be sopel. He really doesn’t do anything out there on either side of the ice. At least mara has a nasty streak, hits, fights and skates better than sopel, so JM should sit sopel, I feel. And lastly, I bet the brass on the new website are going to be dissapointed when they take a look at the numbers and how viewership and traffic has sharply dropped since the new site has been up and running. Hopefully, it speaks volumes at some changes that need to be fixed or addressed back to the old site we all loved so dearly and basically took for granted now that it’s gone!!


  67. Shiloh says:

    Last night Maclean announced that the Habs were “in”. Can two teams still overtake us?

    • Corporate says:

      No not 2 just 1. Carolina can still mathematically over take us. The magic number now I believe is 1. If we get a point and Carolina loses in any way, we are in. At least that is what I believe.

      • Kristopher7 says:

        If MTL loses the last 3 and CAR wins the last 4, CAR overtakes MTL. If Montreal gets at least 1 point, and CAR wins 3 or less games, MTL is safe.

  68. breton 123 says:

    Played a good game,but what about TEAMS that play tough eg: Phily,Bostan.Habs are still soft atthe end of the day,got to buid up over the summer with some size.

  69. mjames says:

    I am glad we won but……

    I know Gomez skated last night but the purpose of the $8mm we are paying him is to at least set up goals. What we got is No assists , no goals, weak on face-offs and the occasional game where he skates. Again given the offensive make-up of this team we can not afford the luxury of this contract. Huet and Redding got sent down so why can’t Gomez. The precedent has already been established. The NYR and Chicago don’t have problem signing FA’s so that is not reason not to send him down.

    I would keep him for the playoffs but if it is more of the same then the only responsible thing to do is to send him down next year.


    • G-Man says:

      Sending Gomez down is an exercise in futility. It signals to all potential UFAs that coming to Montreal is the worst business decision a player can make (Yes, I know he was traded here). Every player has seasons where things do not go as well as the fan base wants. Giving up on those players would be like the Habs giving up on the Rocket because he was starting to be considered as “brittle.”
      Look at careers over the long term, not game to game.

      • Bob_Sacamano says:

        Gomez and the Rocket? Please… Keeping Gomez would show a real lack of ambition and he is not just having a bad season. His production has been declining for years. His shot is laughable and apart from doing a good job carrying the puck through the neutral zone he brings nothing. In the salary cap era you just can´t spend 7,3 m on a player like Gomez. We could possibly sign Laich (if washington can´t keep him) and Emelin for that money which would really improve us.

        • G-Man says:

          Emelin has played in the lowly KHL- who knows what he would bring to the Habs?
          Whining about an almost 3 year old trade is getting old fast. Gomez will not be demoted to the AHL.
          I used the Rocket as an example of how people here are always rushing to judgment.

          • Kristopher7 says:

            Nice use of exaggeration, you mean “almost 2 year old trade”. Adding 1 entire year onto a statement is actually a lot.

      • aroma says:

        sending him down may be satisfying emotionally, but would be disruption for the team. Fourth line. With the development of Eller and Desharnais (the latter of which has to be considered one of the bigger surprises of the season), there’s no need to keep using him as a top six d’man. No need to keep him there because of his salary; that’s just not in the best interest of the team. If his play is inferior to the other centers, then less ice time on the fourth line is what makes sense. I suspect that next year Eller will be rounding nicely into a top six forward. I’m looking forward to a good digging fourth line with Gomez, White and Pyatt.

      • Arrow77 says:

        Players aren’t stupid: they understand that with the salary cap, some players become impossible to trade and that demoting them is sometimes the only option. Sending Gomez in the minors and replacing him with a center who can actually play in one of the top 2 lines is gonna attract a lot more UFAs than keeping Gomez and forcing the team into mediocrity for the duration of his contract.

    • smiler2729 says:

      It’s kinda hard to take you seriously when you don’t even know Wade Redden’s name.

      Redding? Who are you, Don Cherry?? Can’t take him seriously either.

      As for Gomez, it’s $7.45 million and he’s a playoff guy and better than anything else we have at center here or in the system.

      “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

    • joeybarrie says:

      Gomez had an assist last night and was a plus 2.

      There may be other teams, but only ONE Club De Hockey…

    • nek25plus says:

      Gomez had an assist, look at the box score! Let it go already!

      Just cheer for your team.

  70. DrA says:

    Are the Flyers going for positioning? Trying to finish 3rd to face the “light weight” habs? They are looking like they will finish 3rd and the Bruins as the #2 seed.

    • Kristopher7 says:

      I still don’t believe teams will do this sort of crap, so don’t post it please. If professional male athletes are such pussies that they have to drop standings and throw pride out the window just to face a weaker opponent in the post-season, then they might as well all quit the game.

      • DrA says:

        Professional teams and athletes have been known to use any strategy necessary to win (see steroids in baseball and blood doping in cycling). I rest my case.
        Please do not use this type of language when responding to posts.

  71. Kristopher7 says:

    Think Price will get the team record for starts? Or will they throw Auld out there the next three games?

    • smiler2729 says:

      I can see Auld closing out against Ottawa and Toronto if they become meaningless games.

      For some reason, a major injury always happens in opening or closing games against the Laffs.

      “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

  72. adam76 says:

    The system works when the players are on board.

  73. higginrs says:

    Why do ABLN if Quick Hits is doing the trick? I thought Boone was using QH to keep it fresh. If ABLN doesn’t add to QH one of them has to go. This new site already has too many posts. Conversation keeps getting broken up by continual new posts. Also, why does Boone keep quoting other people’s comments? We can scroll down and read viewer posts if that’s what we really want to see. This site is unfortunately becoming less and less of a daily routine for me… so sad.

    • smiler2729 says:

      I like Quick Hits right after the game cuz Booner’s got some astute observations that most of us want to hear about while we’re still buzzing about the game.

      And since we can’t get enough of the team and everything about it About Last Night is the perfect morning recap. Boone offers a more measured reaction after reflection of the same game. Consider it your morning sports section at the breakfast table.

      Boone’s musings have become a 21st century cyber essential to complement the whole Hab experience just as Gallivan & Irvin’s play-by-play and Fisher’s old school columns once did.

      As for the numerous repetitive threads they create, it is what it is.

      “My second favourite team is whoever plays the Leafs”

  74. observer says:

    The only thing they showed last night was when they try to play they still can.

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