About yesterday afternoon …

PriceCampbell

A split on the road to open the series?
Best-of-five with home-ice advantage?
Before the Eastern Conference semifinal began, most Canadiens fans would have been content with that scenario.
But on this Saturday evening, there are long faces, furrowed brows and frazzled nerves in heretofore happy Habland.
The hibernating Boston Bruins have been awakened from their spring slumber.
And things could get ugly.

The Canadiens have plenty of time to recover from that shocking loss – their first setback of this year’s postseason.

Game 3 isn’t until Tuesday evening, in the friendly confines of the Bell Centre.

And there’s no shame in losing a game to the President’s Trophy winners … least of all in their own building, in front of their rabid, intimidating fans.

The manner of the loss, however …

That one’s gotta hurt.

It was more than eight minutes in before the Bruins registered their first shot of the third period. By then, the Canadiens had four shots and Thomas Vanek’s second power-play goal of the game had given them a 3-1 lead.

Not three minutes later, Dougie Hamilton scored on Boston’s second shot of the period. The Bruins’ fifth shot was a goal by Patrice Bergeron, and Reilly Smith beat Carey Price with the home team’s seventh shot.

Game.

And, for doomsayers on Twitter, series.

Which is WAY premature.

Boston’s win was a tribute to their talent, their character, their toughness and their absolute refusal to quit. We saw it in the opening round of the playoffs, when Boston dropped the first game on home ice and then ousted Detroit in four straight.

The possibility of history repeating itself is undoubtedly on the minds of the Bruins.

But the Canadiens aren’t the Red Wings. And Carey Price isn’t Jimstav Howardsson.

But there were times, during that epic collapse, when Carey Price wasn’t Carey Price. Three goals on seven shots? That’s an aberration.

And Price didn’t get any help from his teammates, who reacted to the Boston surge with the sang froid and aplomb of Pauline Marois on election night.

As the nightmare unfolded like a slow-motion train wreck, the Canadiens were as shellshocked as Quebec hapless former premier. The Hamilton goal lit a spark that quickly grew into a conflagration.

The key question: Did the Boston explosion blow up the Carey Price mystique?

Through more than six periods of hockey, the Canadiens’ goaltender  had taken up residence in the Bruins’ heads. While Price was making brilliant saves – 73 SoG turned away through one OT game and two periods of another – the Bruins were hitting posts and crossbars, shooting wide of open nets and firing pucks at sprawling white jerseys (30 blocked Boston shots in Game 1, 31 more on Saturday.)

This can happen in the playoffs. In 2010, Jaro Halak did it to Washington and Pittsburgh – each of which had more firepower than Boston.

But the Penguins and Capitals proved to be paper tigers, fragile teams lacking a quality that makes Boston special:

Resilience.

We’ll find out in Game 3 if the Canadiens have it.

There are positive signs.

P.K. Subban was held off the scoresheet in the opener of the Tampa Bay series and has points in every game since.

Thomas Vanek finally got off the schneid with two on Tuukka.

Mike Weaver scored and blocked four shots.

The power play – dreadful down the stretch of the regular season and through the sweep of the Lightning – is four for nine against Boston.

The disciplined Canadiens have been shorthanded only five times in the series. And the penalty kill is perfect through two games – including a heroic 5-on-3 disadvantage.

Lars Eller, Rene Bourque and Brian Gionta had their moments – while each finishing minus-3 – as did a rejigged line that included Michäel Bournival, Tomas Plekanec and Brendan Gallagher.

Michel Therrien created the latter trio by dropping Brandon Prust down to the fourth line, with Dale Weise and Daniel Brière. Prust is a warrior, but it’s obvious he’s hurting. And his diminished capacity for the rough stuff deprives the Canadiens of an element that’s essential to counter the physical ferocity of the Bruins.

Zdeno Chara, who was plus-5, had five hits in Game 2. Milan Lucic had six.

The renascent Rene Bourque had five hits for the Canadiens. But a Bourque check doesn’t hurt quite as much as being thumped by Lucic or Chara.

The hulking Boston defenceman has laid some big thumps on Max Pacioretty. And the Canadiens’ leading scorer looks like he’s feeling the pain.

The whole team has to be aching after a very tough loss.

They say two goals is the most dangerous lead in hockey.

But with nine minutes left and Carey Price in nets …

• Troubling stat: Through two games, Boston has 160 shot attempts (SoG=misses=Blocked shots). The Canadiens have 112.

 

 

 

452 Comments

  1. Jdub1985 says:

    The only thing worth noting is habs cancerous mindset of sitting on leads – that’s three games in a row Montreal has blown a 2 goal 3rd period lead. Last time I checked Jacque Martin wasn’t behind the bench – so what gives? Everyone knows the best defense is offense – so what’s with this collapse style hockey and where’s the forechecking? Because your opponent can’t score if you’re in their end!

  2. The Juice says:

    If Habs cant come to terms with Markov, Dan Boyle would be a solid replacement.

  3. gerrybell says:

    i dont like seeing the word “collapse.” to collapse means we were in full control of the game – which we werent. out chanced and out shot it was a matter of time before the bruins scored their typical ‘lucky’ goals.

    with that being said, the bruins deserved to win that game – just not the way it went down though.

    habs need to play a perfect game to win. they did. however, you just account for the bizarre luck the bruins bring to the table with deflections and angles off the glass that lead to goals and chances.

    g
    b

  4. Kenny McIrish says:

    Gentlemen,

    I believe we have ourselves a series for the ages………

    Wear the Habs down, slow down their speed and victorious will be the Bruins.
    ______________________________________
    We bring the pain,… to the game.

    • FlyAngler says:

      Good Luck with that Irish. The theory is always easier than the practice. This Habs team is bigger and better than the team that the Bruins had to beat in overtime in game 7 in 2011 in order to win the series. You had best have your Rosary Beads and a case of Jameson’s handy because you will likely need them both.

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

  5. habstrinifan says:

    Any HIO poster now in Swizerland.. within easy travel of Neuchatel? Heading there today until May 26. Maybe we can coneect?.

    Agree with Haberoooo13 that HABS need to do some ninor tweaking for next game. Bobby Dollas had some good ideas before game 2 which I think were bang on. It all hinge on using the HABS mobility on D.

    As Haber000013 said, allowing as many shots while we try to defend the crease and block them is not a good game plan. We simply do NOT have the D size to do that effectively. Gotta meet the Bruins high at the Blue line. HABS did try to do the ‘kitty bar the door’ but on the 4th goal for instance Chara just outmuscled The HABS D.

  6. Forum Dog says:

    Habs did a pretty damned good job for most of that game. But they sure did collapse when the Bruins put the physical pressure on. On both the tying and winning goal, Plekanec’s line got out-muscled down low. I mean, for the tying goal, you’ve got Plekanec, Gallagher, Bouillion and Weaver out there together. That is a recipe for disaster against a motivated Bruins lineup. Ditto for the winner.

    Eller’s line was -3 on the day, though the first Boston goal was a bit of broken play, and the last one was an empty-netter. They could have done a better job picking up the high slot and trailers on the first two goals, but they weren’t the problem from what I saw, even if the stats suggest otherwise.

    It doesn’t look like Boston is going to give the Pacioretty-Desharnais-Vanek time and space out there, so it might be worth considering Vanek on Plekanec’s LW or something. Put them back together on the PP, but maybe give the Bruins a different look at Vanek even strength. Put Weise on the RW and put Gallagher out with Pacioretty and DD.

    I disagreed with taking Moen out, and think he should get back in there. They need his physicality and experience against the Bruins IMO. Bournival was on with Plekanec and Gallagher for the winner, and they sure looked confused (both wingers were on their off wings when it went in). Bournival didn’t play a bad game, but it’s gotta be tough diving in against the Bruins after having not played much over the last couple of months.

    Bottom line, the Habs knew the Bruins were going to push hard in the 3rd, and they weren’t able to hold them off. It can’t be up to Price to win every game, and they are gonna have to find something extra. I don’t like the idea of flipping the lineup every friggin’ night, but I would like to see Moen slot back in (with one of Bournival or Prust out), and wouldn’t mind if either Murray or Tinordi took Bouillion’s spot. Based on last night’s game, the ice time for those players was:

    Prust = 7:29
    Bournival = 8:52
    Bouillion = 9:18

    All replaceable minutes. No need for MTL to panic, but showing a little more at 5-on-5 is going to be critical next game. They need come out of it with either a win, or at least the feeling that they can stay with the Bruins when the intensity ramps up. Game 1 Price bailed them out. Game 2 he couldn’t. Can’t let the Bruins dominate them on home ice.

  7. Blade says:

    I remember Mike Babcock saying that no team looks or seeks out adversity, but when it inevitably happens, the good teams will embrace it and learn from it.

    I don’t think anyone will argue that the Bruins are the better all around team, but that does not guarantee a series win.

    I respect the doomsayers opinions on this site that are suggesting this series is done, but I would prefer to see how the boys deal with this adversity and see what they are made of before we start thinking about what’s wrong and what to do about next year.

    Go Habs!!

  8. Danno says:

    New threat…

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  9. habfan100 says:

    Game 3 is huge for us as well for the Bruins. Game 3 will show how this team will react to this meltdown on home ice. If they flake, Boston will win this series as the momentum has clearly shifted and winning the first one in the Bell Centre will be huge for them. I expect nothing less from the habs than a convincing win on Tuesday. Game 3 has to be that Game where the Habs play their best game of the series thus far and show the Bruins they can hang with em and create that doubt in their minds.

    • Haberoooo13 says:

      Game 3 is huge for both teams but I think both teams have shown all year to never count them out.

      Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

  10. Garbo says:

    The only bad thing about this loss, is now the Habs will have to win the series on the road in Game 5, which is not ideal.

    My pick for worst player on the team yesterday = Prust… by a mile. At least there won’t be any concern of who to sit when Galchenyuk is back for Round 3.

  11. Haberoooo13 says:

    I am generally a positive guy, and I like of a lot of what I’ve seen in the first two games but the main area the Habs do need improvement is in protecting the highslot area.

    Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

    • Habfan17 says:

      They do need to make a few minor tweaks. What they really need is to not have a lapse like they did in the third period. They have done a solid job for the most part, they cut down the shots against in the second game. The Bruins got couple of bounces go their way. If even one of those did not go in, the Habs would be up by two.

      In order to keep things going, the top line needs to play harder. Vanek finally netted two, but Patches has not risen to the occasion, yet! DD is working hard and if as a line, they simplify things and drive the net with their speed, good things will happen!

      Habfan17

      • Haberoooo13 says:

        The problem though with letting a team shoot that much is that sometimes a black shot will ricochet somewhere and the goalie who was all prepared for the original shot, might not have time to readjust to where or to who the puck has gone to.

        Agreed that it is minor tweaks.

        Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

  12. Phil C says:

    The Habs have had a lead in this series for over 52 minutes. The Bruins have only had a lead for 11 minutes. The longest any Bruins lead has lasted is about 7 minutes. Teams play differently with a lead and when trailing, so this may explain why some of the corsi stats are in the Bruins favour. The one time the Habs were trailing early in a game, and the ice tilted towards the Bruins end until the Habs had a lead again.

  13. PrimeTime says:

    Where was the “I told you so” crowd when the Habs were winning by 2 midway through the 3rd? People who sit back and wait for their fatalist expectations to materialize drive me nuts. These are the same people who do nothing but complain. They call themselves “realists”, Lol. No matter what they experience they “know” it will get worse and others always have it better. Gee, I wonder why?? My guess is there aren’t too many “realists” who work hard and use experience to succeed, but they are many who use it for “excuses” of their failures.

    º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º

    • Haberoooo13 says:

      A guy I went to high school with..many, many years ago…has his finger on the keyboard for whenever Habs lose and gets into his “See that’s why we won’t win with price rant…” I said idiot on his facebook account and deleted him

      Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

      • Chuck Kept Calm and Carey'd On says:

        You went to high school with Mondou6?

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        • Haberoooo13 says:

          LOL….was he on his usual Anti-Price crusade yesterday also?

          Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

          • Chuck Kept Calm and Carey'd On says:

            Yup.

            X X X X X 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

          • Haberoooo13 says:

            I don’t get it…some “fans” seem to want as much the team to lose as to win, so they can be all Cherrry-esque, McGuire-esque with the “I told ya…”

            Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

        • Mondou6 says:

          Hey, I resemble that remark! :)

          Price was great in Game 1, and he broke down yesterday. Throw out the empty-netter, and 2 of the 3 goals were really ugly.

          How else can you describe a shot from the side boards that hits nothing but net? You could feel the air come out of the balloon right there.

          If he plays like he did in the 3rd period yesterday, we are going golfing soon. I don’t know how anyone can argue that.

          • Un Quebecois en Ontario says:

            Mondou6, did you actually see the replay on that “shot from the side boards”?

            Price was square on the shot but it deflected on Bouillon’s leg and thus suddenly went up. It may have looked bad but the deflection made it really hard to stop.

          • boing007 says:

            Agree. He wasn’t square to the post.

            Richard R

    • Chuck Kept Calm and Carey'd On says:

      The “I told you so” crowd was busy making up excuses as to why we’d blow a 2-0 series lead.

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  14. Chuck Kept Calm and Carey'd On says:

    Man, I sure hope that the Habs aren’t feeling a negative as a lot of posters on here. If so, they’re done. You’re only going to win if you believe you can win. The Habs played the Bruins strongly through the season; I doubt that one loss will change how the feel. Boston is an excellent team, but they’re definitely beatable.

    Let’s get the first goal on Tuesday and let them play from behind in our own arena.

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  15. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Those of you that want to praise Boston & how they’re built for the playoffs, knock yourselves out. They’re the dirtiest team in hockey & we will beat them in this series & move on.
    I’m sure there’s plenty of room on the Gooins website for those who choose to shower praise on that crappy team. Those fother muckers are chopping away at our players like they’re trees & the refs look on & do absolutely nothing. Glen fu..ing Healy calls what Boston does “little crosschecks” & “small slashes”. Total BS. We took our foot off the pedal yesterday & with a couple of lucky bounces those idiots were able to win the game. We have home ice & we will make those Bastards from Boston strong my ass pay.

    • Danno says:

      I approve this message!

      ________________________________________

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

      Spot on Windsor and yet when they do get penalized Julien and their fans and their journalists cry and whine and piss and moan and bitch just like criminals do when they get arrested and incarcerated. Its never effing their fault, its the Refs, its bias in favor of the Habs. They want to manufacture all of their crap and then scream when they get called for it. My concern is that if the series goes long enough we will no doubt see Tim Peel who is loathe to call penalties on the Habs opposition.

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

    • Chuck Kept Calm and Carey'd On says:

      No… Habs will win by playing their game, not the Bruins’. I could make a case for White replacing an injured Prust, and possibly Murray to play hard on the boards since we have the last change at home, but Tinordi’s time should be next year.

      X X X X X 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

      • adamkennelly says:

        I’ll take 2 out of 3.

        I agree we play our game – but we need some push back or I fear there will be an ugly one in MTL.

        White and Murray.

    • FlyAngler says:

      Murray Yes, White and Tinordi no IMO. White and Tinordi are too prone to mistakes and miscues. Murray will punish some of the Bruins physically which we need but I doubt that Therrien will remove Frankie from the lineup.

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

    • Kenny McIrish says:

      @WindsorHab-10 Stop your whining. Calls go both ways. Bounces go both ways.
      Whining is most unbecoming. You guys still have 911 on speed dial for hockey hits?
      Where else do the fans burn and loot their own city whether they win or lose the Cup?

      Stop complaining and play solid hockey. It’s that simple.

      ______________________________________
      We bring the pain,… to the game.

    • Un Quebecois en Ontario says:

      I love the Habs to death and hate the Bruins to death, but they ARE, objectively, a really good team. Great team game, composure, physicality, skills, goaltending, name it they have it. They didn’t win the President’s Trophy for nothing.

      They do play dirty as hell though.

  16. frontenac1 says:

    Hola Amigos! I’m glad the boys flushed the terlet early on in the series. Keep the Faith. Habs in 6. Saludos!

  17. FlyAngler says:

    For all of the trolls and cynics who have been claiming that the Habs have a big problem with regard to goal scoring in the 3rd period:

    The Habs are currently 4th in the 2014 playoffs in 3rd period goal production at 8 3rd period goals in 6 games for an average of 1.33 3rd period goals per game.

    Boston & LA are tied for 1st at 1.7 but both arguably had 1st round opponents that were weaker on D and in goal, the Wings and the Sharks.

    The Habs have also won 2 games in overtime and lost none.

    So- to the trolls I say get ye back under the bridge where ye belong lest someone throws ye over it.

    “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

  18. Phil C says:

    The Bruins have played better 5 on 5 for the most part, but they have also been playing from behind most of this series. The Bruins had one lead in this series,1-0 after the first yesterday. The Habs responded by dominating them in the second period, scoring two goals. They then got caught sitting on a lead in the third while Boston played desperate hockey. Take away Bergeron’ s flukey goal and the Habs are up 2-0.

    The reality is the Habs have been able to get a lead in each game, so judging the 5-on-5 play has to made in this context. They have to learn not to sit back and anticipate the pushback. If Boston keeps playing from behind every game, it will eventually catch up with them. The Bruins can’t depend on luck every game.

  19. rhino514 says:

    As I mentioned after beating Tampa, when Tampa came back a couple of times to tie but we still eaked out the win; if we relinquish leads to Boston, we will pay the price.
    Our team is a good team but does not have total shutdown capability defensively and an elite, hungry team will usually find a way to put the puck in the net against us.
    In game one we got lucky with the PP opportunites in overtime, in game 2 we couldn´t pull it off.
    Not taking anything away from our guys, they are showing alot of heart, but this is one really amazing Bruins team. I have not seen any team in the league dominate us for two games the way Boston has, and though I knew they were good, I didn´t think they were quite this good.
    We have to try and go all out the next two games at home where we will have last change and the ability to get our matchups.
    But it will take an incredible effort just to get the series to 7 games against this team; that in itself would be a heck of an accomplishment.
    The x-factor remains overtime; if we go 2-0, or +2, in overtime, basically, we will have a chance. We need the overtime breaks and we need a few breaks here and there. And needless to say we can´t lose even one of our top nine or top 4 D to injury or have a key guy playing hurt.
    The first game performance by Carey will go down in any case as one of the greatest performances I have ever seen. I certainly don´t think we will lose the series because of him, and if we have the faintest of chances, it will be because of him. Forget the save percentage; many more goals could have gon in in both games if not for The Kid.

    • JF says:

      Good post. I especially agree about Price. His save percentage yesterday may not have ended up being great, but it was only because of him that we were in the game at all and able to take a lead in the second period. If we manage to win the series or even just keep it close, it will be largely because of Price’s performance.

  20. Stanley Cup or Bust ! says:

    Oh I still feel dirty.

    A tandem with 2 D on reconstructed knees will be exposed from time to time.
    Surprised the coach didn’t add some beef and youth with Tinordi instead of riding aging vets.
    We are not physical team and with Prust hurt and Moen not playing we are really not physical.
    All in all it was an morning game.
    It’s gut check time boys!
    Go Habs Go!

  21. boing007 says:

    Emelin-Beaulieu, Gorges-Tinordi, PK-Markov. Murray 7th D.

    Richard R

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      This year or next year? LOL

      If the Habs lose to the Bruins, people will question why the Bruins are able to develop their young D much faster.

      • Mark C says:

        Lol Wut?

        Other than Hamilton they’re all older with more experience. Also there is an injury to a top-2 and top-6 veteran. People also conveniently forget that Boston had to let Ference walk due to the cap.

        One of the young D was removed from yesterday’s lineup due to poor play, only to see his veteran replacement almost cost his team the game.

        This so called development has as much to do with a lack of options as anything else.

  22. Danno says:

    An incredible story about an iconic photo of the Rocket

    The Rocket Photo Lives on

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
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  23. True Phil C and others who are trying to put a positive spin on this. But it still hurts to be wrong vs. Scrothchland, Scotland and Timo among others.

    I couldn’t sleep last night and my day was not as bright. My wife said I was being childish as it was only a game, despite trying to describe the manner in which we turtled. I told her I didn’t believe the Habs would do that, yet they did. Not enough gas in the tank? Hurting? well if that is the case, my biggest concern is that this will be our…

    Ottawa moment. The Habs had no push-back this time. They didn’t look like the Habs that played most of the Tampa series despite finding the back of Tuuka’s net. They aren’t playing the Senators or Lightening. They are playing a team that has no quit. They have a fire in the belly and WANT the CUP. I fear that we won’t win the Cup until we…

    Have that fire in the belly for the Cup. up 3-1 with 8 minutes left, a team like Chicago and Boston, would not allow skaters to just cross their blue line. They wouldn’t simply fall back, they would attack, smelling the blood and the injuries.

    Why the Habs have to make it harder on themselves most frequently in tight situations, I don’t know, I just fear that this turtling will be the Detroit story all over again, with the Bruins accolades poring down for their tenacity and must win attitude, since attitude is a seventh player on the ice.

    Sigh!

    I’m speechless! 20 years and counting…

    • Danno says:

      Or maybe (just maybe) they learned a valuable lesson and will keep their foot on the gas for a full 60 minutes from now on.

      Stay tuned…

      ________________________________________

      “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
      Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

    • Phil C says:

      A 2 goal lead is nothing in NHL hockey. It doesn’t mean they turtled. The Bruins came back in game one then lost in overtime. So I guess that should be considered turtling as well. The Bruins looked done for 2 1/2 periods, weak, weak weak. The Habs have been playing with a lead or tied for most of the two games. If the Bruins think they can play for one period and win, they will be golfing soon.

    • ont fan says:

      Played in a golf tournament yesterday and heard the Habs lost 5 to 3. Thought , well it was respectable, that’s good. Saw the game in FF later, it was surprisingly easier to take in FF. We knew the Bruins were this good, why all the glumness? 2 goal leads have been blown all over the playoffs. Turn down the volume, watch the game without the announcers going crazy and relax. It was never going to be easy from here on in no matter who we played. I wondered if we could get 3 goals a game? Now we have to stop 3 goals a game. Small steps folks.

      • Danno says:

        The tying goal by Bergeron was a fluke. The puck took a wild hop off the ice at the edge of the faceoff circle. Boullion was off to the side to give Price a view and didn’t touch it contrary to what commetators said. He never deflected it. It was a bad bounce and a lucky one for the Bruins that changed the outcome of the game.

        ________________________________________

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        Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  24. Paz says:

    I keep reading posts about how the Bruins are just better than we are, how they are bigger and stronger than we are, how we don’t match up against them.

    People. That is total nonsense.

    Go through their lineup and compare skater for skater, position by position.

    On paper, Boston is not a great lineup.

    We have an excellent chance to win game 3 and to take charge of this series. We beat these guys all year and just beat them again to take away their hoe ice advantage. If we win our 3 games at home this series is over in 6 games.

    No wonder Therrien gets so much credit around here. So many of you do not believe in our talent you have decided that the coach must have gotten us to this position.

    Start believing in our talent!

    • Phil C says:

      Good post, this Habs team can definitely play with the Bruins.

    • third generation haber says:

      While I’m thrilled with our gutsy effort, no we are not as good as the Bruins. They were third in the league in offence this year and second best in goals against. They are an improved version of the teams that won the cup in 2011 and went to the finals in 2013.

      They have similar goaltending, better defence, similar or slightly worse top 6 forwards, and immensely better bottom six forwards. Their toughness can’t be matched.

      Case in point, they outplayed us in both games, hits, possession, scoring chances, shots on goal (in this order these factors explain why they outplayed us). Our amazing goaltending, coupled with Boston’s one weakness, their lack of discipline, has made it close.

      While we can beat them during regular season games (where they lose their composure and march to the box), a seven game series has a cumulative effect and after 2 games it is already apparent that the heavy hitting is taking its toll.

      There has not been, in recent history, a Stanley cup winner that had this many undersized players on it. We are certainly trending bigger, but we remain “the little team that could”. While it’s inspiring, fairy tales don’t come true in the NHL playoffs.

      The good news is, the best team doesn’t always win, goalies can steal a series, and MT is using a system that makes us hard to score against. Yes, we can win this series, but we will continue to be soundly outplayed.

      MB is in the early stages of building the next Boston Bruins like team, so I’m plenty optimistic about the future, but realistic about the present. Hate them or not, Boston is a model franchise.

      j.p. murray

    • Savardian Spin-o-rama says:

      If only the game was played on paper…

      ~~ You’ve been spun ~~

  25. Phil C says:

    I can’t believe how much Bruins love there is here today. They are outplaying the Habs 5-on-5, but the Habs are winning on special teams and goaltending. It all counts and as a result, the series has been close. Boston are lucky to not be down 2-0. Last time I checked this is a 7 game series, so it is far from over. It is all about adjustments now. The Habs closed the gap on the 5-on-5 play last game. If they can make a few more adjustments and close the gap even more while the PP and PK continue to click, the Bruins could be in trouble.

    The question is what adjustments should the Habs make. Prust seems to be playing at about 50%, so he should probably sit or at least move to the fourth line. Hopefully Galchenyuk is getting close. I would even consider sitting Briere for White and inject some energy and physical play on the fourth line.

    Not sure what they should do on defense. Bouillon and Weaver have been pretty good overall, but it would be tempting to insert Murray to crack some skulls. It would be risky though. Tough call.

    • Ton says:

      we dont need to crack skulls we need to stop the cycle with one of his big hits…..we need to win games not crack skulls

      • Phil C says:

        That’s what I meant. Murray starts throwing some big hits to disrupt the cycle and slow down their attack. Punish them physically. A few big hits from a guy like Murray could slow them down and get in their heads.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Phil

      The Habs have been outscored 7-3 in 5X5 hockey.
      Only 1 of those 3 Even Strength goals have been scored by a forward – Rene Bourque.
      The other 2 were scored by Bouillon and Weaver.

      • Paz says:

        We got tremendous production from the Desharnais line 5 on 5 during the season.

        We need to get that line clicking again.

      • Phil C says:

        So what? For two and a half periods, the Bruins looked done. They get a lucky goal and the momentum shifted. Many of the Bruins goals were also from the points. Take away a few of those lucky goals and the Habs make a few adjustments and it gets tight in a hurry.

        • Maritime Ronn says:

          Mario Tremblay – who knows something about winning Stanley Cups (5) said yesterday that hockey is a 60 minute game…not 50 or 52.

          • Phil C says:

            No question, but it is noteworthy that for long stretches of the game yesterday, the Bruins were not the best team. If the Habs keep pushing the pace instead of sitting on a lead, the Bruins will be in trouble. The Bruins have been playing from behind most of this series.

    • third generation haber says:

      In the playoffs, you’re not supposed to get outplayed 5 on 5! You’re supposed to win because u perform better than the other team. Clinging to your goalie and your PP does not make u the better team.

      j.p. murray

      • Phil C says:

        The team with the most goals wins. It’s not how, it’s how many. Maybe the Habs should give back the Cups Roy and Dryden won for them?

        • third generation haber says:

          Yes, the most goals wins, but I was stating that we were not the better team, and we should be! When Roy (vs. Calgary and L.A.) won, we were the better team. During the 70’s, when we won 6 cups, we were also, almost always, the better team.

          Wouldn’t u rather win because we outplay the Bruins???

          j.p. murray

  26. New says:

    The Canadiens finally lost a game in the playoffs. They stopped skating and a couple guys went to automatic. Coverage on several players was lost. The Bruins do that all the time. But you would think the world ended.

    I have been here for awhile now. I can say that the fans and some other folks are great when the team is winning but at the first sign of adversity they turn. That works. For 20 years the team has lost and always disappointed. Getting negative on the team when they stumble allows you to roar back with the “I told you so.” when the inevitable happens. Like Eeyore in the Pooh books and films, it is all for naught.

    The Boston Bruins didn’t win the Cup and go to the finals without having a capable team. I can’t think of a team in the NHL that plays the mythical 60 minute game and the Bruins never do. They are the heavy favorites to win this series and the East.

    Years ago the Canadiens used to sequester the team to avoid this negativity during the playoffs. The League won’t let you do that now. But it was a good idea. It can get depressing being around people who are negative all the time. Even Eeyore.

  27. Maritime Ronn says:

    Marc Bergevin:
    ” I believe you have players that get you IN the playoffs, and you have players that get you THROUGH the playoffs.”
    ——————-
    For that reason, it is important that the Habs play the Bruins who happen to be perhaps be one of the better ‘teams’ in the NHL at this moment.

    For at least the next 3-5 years, all roads out of the Conference – actually the Division, pass through Boston.
    Playing Ottawa or Tampa can sometimes hide or camouflage shortcomings.

    Playing a President’s Cup team over and over in a potential 7 game series – not a game here and there in an 82 game season, will always show the strengths, yet more importantly, really expose team and individual weaknesses.
    Bottom line is that there is NO place to hide.

    Who knows what the outcome will be, yet once done, GMMB and staff will be able to recognize the weaknesses and act upon them.
    No one said it was going to be easy.

  28. 1010 says:

    I thinK we have to put this, `blowing a 3-1 lead`concept into perspective. One series had four or five 3-1 leads blown. All be it in the last ten minutes is rough. So contrary to Boones statement it was not epic. But at this point in time the Bruins have to feel pretty good. As we all know, if you could pick one game to win of the first two on the road, it would be game two every time. Now Therrien has to really be a coach. The last line change, allowing him to keep certain guys away from Chara, like Max for example, should be taking up a lot of his thought process for the next day or two. Line matching could be critical.

    GO HABS….

  29. Sportfan says:

    The problem with the game was the Habs seemed to be in their own zone way to much in the game, that is the obvious one. The funny thing was the small amounts of time they were on attack they managed to draw penalties. I really hope they’ll be more aggressive in game 3 and 4 at home.

    Also Price does not deserve any of the blame at all.

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

  30. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Game 3 wish list. Out are Prust, Bouillion & Weaver. In are White, Tinordi & Murray.

    • Ton says:

      its amazing how muck logic we put into lineup changes……if we would have won that game…….Weaver would have been likely the reason we did…..he killed off a 5 on 3 almost by himself and came back to score a goal! Something I am not getting. yes we ripe for a change and it will likely come from sitting Boulion…….not because he didn’t play well because he’s tiring and we need some size……..its going to be Murray or Tinordi coming in with no changes up front…….the leash is getting short of two forwards however.

  31. CH Marshall says:

    I think it was around 10 or 9 minutes left yesterday after Boone quipped about not be living what he’s seeing, thst I sensed the critical moment had come. Sure enough they just stopped skating and couldn’t grab control of the moment. It was disappointing, because we needed leadership at that critical moment.

    • dexterthebeagle says:

      I agree, who does Boone think he is, after a season of being an unmitigated pessimist, he changes his mojo, and jinxes the Habs in the 2nd game against Boston?

  32. Paz says:

    Is Rask better than Price?
    Is Chara better than Subban or Markov?
    Is Lucic better than Max?

    I don’t think this series comes down to talent.
    Boone calls it resiliency.
    I call it a commitment to energy.

    • Habfan17 says:

      I think Price is better than Rask, Chara is not better, but does bring an intimidation factor that neither Markov or Subban have. Overall Lucic is better than Max. Dirty stuff aside, Patches seems to back off when the going gets tough! This is the time he needs to be a go to guy and lead! Patches needs to get a bit of Gallagher and Boullion in his game! It is great to score 40 goals during the season, but what is it worth if you don’t score when it counts the most! Maybe trading him for Evander Kane would not be such a bad idea! MT can enroll Kane in the school for better people!

      Habfan17

      • Paz says:

        In terms of hockey skills it’s not even close. Max is much faster, stronger skater, much better hands, better shot. Not even close.

        Commitment to energy?

        Lucic seems to “bring it” and Max is lagging.

        Please do not mention trading Max. Any time you have that thought you should take a moment, reconsider, and then change your mind.

        • Habfan17 says:

          I don’t know that Max is faster or a better skater. Kane can score and flies. he also has a mean streak! Max can score, not when he has too much time to think and so far, not when it counts most!
          I am still not sold on him. Too much inconsistency ad I have yet to see that drive to be the best and win at all costs. That is what in my mind is missing from his game. PK has it, Gallagher has it! Patches does not. Bourque stepped up his game and Patches has stepped down his! It would make a world of difference if Patches would step it up!

          Habfan17

    • Sportfan says:

      No, No, and unfortunately, probably yes

      Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
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  33. 24AW says:

    Some don’t realize we’re playing the best all around team in the NHL, they are built for the playoffs, can play any stile you put out against them. The Habs may win another game but the series is Bostons and I will even go as far to say, the Stanley Cup whether we like it or not. Looking at the way they play, its there’s to lose.

    • JF says:

      I tend to agree with you. There’s a possibility we could upset the Bruins, but it would take everything we’ve got as well as some poor play by Rask and mistakes by his team-mates. If the Bruins win, they’re my pick for the Cup. I think they’re better than the Blackhawks this year; and the Ducks and Kings look like they’re going to wear each other out the way the Kings and Sharks did. The Bruins look like having an easier path than any of the Western teams.

    • Ton says:

      i beg to differ…….I may been watching hockey and coached if for years………we had them…..and let them off the hook…..Montreal played effectively enough to winl (difference between playing well and effectively) crowd was booing Boston . Boston played effectively for about 45 minutes of that game, Montreal did it for a better part of 50 minutes. Boston can exploited for some of the players do have the tenancy to slump at certain times…..as well there d beyond chara can be exploited! Rask is not playing like a veniza trophy winner therefore the game is played on the ice….just wait and see I guess. Furthermore I my chances for LA and Chi against the bruins anyday……..

  34. Habfan17 says:

    No matter how this series ends, it is a positive for the Habs and more so for Bergevin. At first, I did not want the Habs to play the Bruins because I knew the Bruins would play to hurt. That is the only reason Thornton was mad at PK. Actually I think he was mad at himself. It was obvious he saw PK in a vulnerable position and wanted to hurt him. Problem was, PK saw him coming and since he was halfway down to the ice, he dropped to protect himself. Good on him! The puck was already gone so this was not a hockey play by Thornton.

    I see this as a positive for a few reasons, the biggest one for Bergevin and his group is, that they get to see which players are willing to sacrifice and do what it takes, and which ones bail because they don’t want to get hurt! Bourque stepped up against Tampa, now lets see if he is willing to keep doing it against The Gooins!

    The next positive is that the young players are gaining valuable experience and confidence. Lastly, Bergevin is seeing which players are willing to compete, but just can’t succeed!

    This will be an enormous help this summer to continue reshaping the Habs. If they manage to defeat Boston, even better!
    Habfan17

  35. adamkennelly says:

    that loss was a complete disaster – why – because Habs were actually outplaying Boston then apparently Bruins decided to try and BOOM – game over.

    the zone entry is far too easy for them – same thing over and over – push the D back – puck carrier cuts to the middle and other two forwards rush the net.

    We need Tinordi and Murray in the line-up next game – need a little more push back from the D – sit Frankie and Weaver – who has been really good but just not enough muscle to get the job done.

    also – with an injured Prust as our toughest player – its open season – and that Boston team is far too big, strong and really f-ng mean – time for some push back.

    • Habfan17 says:

      Reminds me a bit of the Flyers when they won their two cups in the 70’s. Eventually the Habs added the players they needed to compete against the intimidation tactics of the flyers.

      Bergevin has the opportunity to do the same thing now. There are already some great pieces in place and a few that may fill the missing 3rd and 4th line grit/skill balance.

      Habfan17

  36. Psycho29 says:

    Happy Star Wars Day everyone…..May the 4th be with you!

    Habs back in Montreal with home ice advantage in a best-of-five series.
    Tuesday Habs will win by 3, with an ENG. Take that to the bank!!!

  37. chesterfiled says:

    After the Bruins score the second, I go out back to uh take out the garbage, only to have my kids come screaming that the Bruins scored again. Come bak in thinking 3-3 but no, 4-3! My kids erratic energy seemed to match the last minute CH attempts, while Price out of the net to tie the game. What are ya going to do? If MT is going to make changes for game 3 or 4, I would be ok with third pairing of Murray and Tinordi. Weaver and Bouillon where good, but maybe a game or two to rest up? Maybe a new third line, Moen/Prust-White-Weise? Max-DD-Bourque. Prust-Eller-Gionta… I don’t know, too confusing for me. Anyways, how do practice tape to tape passing and kamikaze for-checking?

  38. JF says:

    As Old Bald Bird says, this series so far has shown the difference between a good team and a great team. The Habs are a good team and we’ve had a very good season. But the Bruins are better. They were better in all categories throughout the season, and they’ve been by far the better team in both games. The only facets in which we’ve outplayed them are goaltending and special teams.

    Price has significantly outplayed Rask; and, despite yesterday’s result, I think the Habs are still to some extent in Rask’s head. We have to keep getting to him and undermine the confidence yesterday’s win will have given him. He is shaky, he can be beaten. His save percentage in the series is under .900. If Price continues to play at the level he has, we have a chance. But we’ll have to make some adjustments.

    Before the playoffs, we were worrying about how to get the powerplay going. It has come to life against the Bruins and is one of the reasons, along with Price’s performance, why the series is tied. But at the same time, our even-strength scoring has all but dried up. This will be a huge problem if, as I expect will happen, the Bruins make adjustments and manage to contain our powerplay. Or even if they just stop taking penalties. They were showing signs of frustration yesterday and taking undisciplined penalties; but they managed to limit the damage and then turn the tables in the third period. I imagine this will be a lesson to them. They’ll be more disciplined next game.

    What worked against Tampa was an aggressive forecheck that prevented their getting any flow through the neutral zone. We had the puck most of the time in that series, but the situation is reversed here. We’re letting the Bruins intimidate us and dictate the flow of the game. Somehow we have to take time and space away from them. They just have far too many options all game long.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Good post and good morning Jane. The Bruins create a major line matchup problem for us. I think with last change at home the team will be in a better position to dictate style. Tougher on the road though, eh?

      • JF says:

        It’s much tougher on the road, but I’m not sure we’ll be able to do it successfully even at home. The Bruins just have so much depth and are stronger all over the ice than we are. We may well be in over our heads in this series, but it will be at the very least a learning experience for our young players.

        I think we could have handled any other team in the Conference more easily than the Bruins; but, even if we lose this series, it may have more value than any other match-up would have had in terms of showing us (and Marc Bergevin) exactly what steps we need to take to reach the elite level.

  39. jrs10069 says:

    Brutal loss but was obvious it was coming after Hamilton’s goal.

    Habs have to watch the forecheck often they would have 2 and sometimes 3 guys deep and boston would come out with the puck.

    Prust and Bouillion need to sit, Eller, Gionta and Emelin have to play much better, if they do, they will win game 3.

    jrs10069

    • jrs10069 says:

      Would also be good to get Tiny and Tinordi into the lineup but don’t think there is room for both. Need the Boston fwds thinking about getting their head taken off as they move up ice. That’s the problem with the Habs shit forecheck. Too many odd man rushes which eliminates the possibility of the crushes…hey now.

      jrs10069

  40. Phil C says:

    The Bruins are what we thought they were. They’re what we thought they were. We played them in regular season — who the hell takes a four games of the regular season like it’s bullshit? Bullshit! We played them in the second game — everybody played 2 periods — the Bruins are who we thought they were! That’s why they took the damn ice. Now if you want to crown them, then crown their ass! But they are who we thought they were! And we let ‘em off the hook!

  41. nshab says:

    There is no doubt the Habs are not playing their game. What is the truth about what’s going on in Boston. Is it all the big bad Bruins and their attempt to injure players at every chance. I think it’s more the idiotic fans throwing objects at the players. How well do you think you would play knowing objects are coming down on you. Water bottles and cups full of beer now but what is next. A brick, a knife ,maybe some nut case has a gun. How in the hell does the league allow this. After the Hab’s third goal, did the CBC we love the Bruins not say things were thrown at the Habs bench. Maybe the real break down was a team scared of what was going to happen if they won again. Not saying they threw the game, just they were thinking how safe their off ice exit was going to be. Easy to lose focus when there is a fear you may face a angry mod with weapons. Why was the game not stop the first time anything was thrown at a player. Why were the fan not warned if this happens again the game is over. Why was this allowed to continue. Well do Habs fans meet the Bruins bus Tuesday night with pitch forks and torches. Let see how the big bad Bruins play under these conditions.

    • murfdog says:

      I agree buddy, I had the same thoughts, bruins think they have passionate fans well wait until Tuesday at the bell center. That game yesterday should have been a W for our habs where to me it wasn’t a boston team theat never let up to me it was HABS playing D-fence hockey trying to hold the lead, never works ever. Game 4 vs tampa they started then tampa came back, HABS stop that just in time andplayed the way that got them there. I hope we rain down bottles and objects on the boston bench. Was moen hurt? why whould he play bournvile when we won game one? I di say that at the start of game 1 when moen was is but I hate how MT does line changes when things are working. GO HABS GO. lets welcome these guys back and take it to boston three games up and wreckem in there building in front of there fans that don’t know hockey.

  42. RockinRey says:

    Lame comment by Price

    “We weren’t expecting to come in here and sweep two games.”

    ——————————————————————————————————
    ‘This organization going forward must set its sights on competing for the game’s ultimate prize every season — and no lesser standard should be accepted.’
    —Geoff Molson, Canadiens owner and president

  43. Maritime Ronn says:

    Good morning

    1) 5X5 Hockey:
    Before the series began, 5X5 hockey (Goals For/Against) was a major concern, as Boston finished 1st in the Regular season in that category.

    So far, the Bruins have outscored the Habs 7-3 in 5X5 hockey, and only 1 of those Even Strength goals were scored by a forward – Rene Bourque.
    The other 2 were scored by Bouillon and Weaver.

    2) While the games have been close, what has made them that way has been the Habs PP.
    It has been successful on 4 of 9 opportunites for a 44% clip.
    That will NOT continue, as a PP that is working well in the playoffs is usually in the 15%-20% range.

    3) Putting The Loss in perspective, when the Hawks won the Cup last year, their playoff record was 16-7, and 2 of those 7 losses were in OT.

    4) While Carey Price was absolutely superb again, something tells me he would like that winning goal back.
    Contrary to some belief around here, the tieing goal did NOT deflect off of Bouillon.
    Several replays show it hit something in the ice and darted straight up.

    5) Some on here are blaming the Habs back end – its 6 man Dunit.
    Defense is ALL about a 5 man unit and responsibilities.
    In all seriousness, can someone – anyone, please explain what that 5 man system is?

    6) Chara:
    Perhaps no one on HIO has worked in a hostile environment where they have to face an alleged attempted manslaughter foe.
    It would only be human to have enduring psychological effects.
    Max was looking for Chara all afternoon, and has basically been neutralized.

    Coach MT will have the last change on home ice and somehow must find a way to get the 51 line matched up against the Bruins Bottom 4.
    If not, it will be more of the same.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Hiya Ron with 2 n’s. Sure does not feel like a split on the road morning does it. That game yesterday sure took a breath out of the sails, eh?

      This teams had issues with leads all season. I’m not with the “choke” crew or the we’re too small crew although size may have something to do with it. I think we’re talent challenged in certain areas and need to play with an edge. When we don’t or we take the foot off the pedal that talent void gets emphasized.

      BTW the Habs aren’t the only team oriented to giving up big leads. Its near epidemic in the league. I think its the same flawed roster/edge theory.

      • Cal says:

        Hey Jim, the Habs were 35-0-3 with the lead after 2 periods this season. What’s the issue? ;)

        • Habfan10912 says:

          Morning Cal. Late 3rd period goals. Not just Habs though. Its a league wide issue.

          I’m old and the memory fades quickly but I recall a few if the victories, Stars and Canes as example where 3 goal leads vanished with a blink of an eye only to come away with a W. I’m sure there are others but I’m old. CHeers.

          • sheds88 says:

            morning Jim, you are correct about the other teams. but who cares about any other team :)

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Hi Jim

        One thing about playoff hockey – and especially playing the best team over and over, is that weaknesses are exposed.

        Once all is said and done, GMMB will have a great idea of what’s needed….because with the new playoff format,the Habs have to be able to compete for 7 games with the Bruins (not one here and there) just to get out of the Division

  44. RockinRey says:

    Bottom line is yesterday was Epic! A major collapse. They had the Bruins where they needed them……and the ability to sweep them at home. It was not to be.

    There were a couple of unfortunate bounces that got the B’s rolling but prior to that any chance they had on Price was an open look.

    Can the Habs still win this series? Possibly. But I think they have to dig deeper and be prepared for a lot more sacrifice. I mentioned in the game blog that I have never seen a team fall down as much as the Habs. Players seem to be tripping over themselves , the blue line, at the faintest touch by a Boston player.Up and down the lineup. Stand up for crying out loud!!!

    The leadership group has to have a players only meetin. The team has to decide if they want to go out like this.

    Possible addition is Ryan white for Prust. He may not help if they get into penalty trouble but his energy might translate to more penalties and some push back.

    For everyone believing that Chucky is some panacea . I think they should really take stock of what you can expect from him. His skill level has to be complimented . If he can be inserted before the end of the series ( in the next 2 games) then I say reunite the EGG line.

    At least that might prove to give the Habs two scoring lines.

    Eller, Pleky, Briere, Bourque , And Vanek have to step up in game 2. These guys have to make a difference on the score sheet.

    ——————————————————————————————————
    ‘This organization going forward must set its sights on competing for the game’s ultimate prize every season — and no lesser standard should be accepted.’
    —Geoff Molson, Canadiens owner and president

  45. Cal says:

    Hockey is a simple game. To fix the Habs’ problem of rushing Bruins forwards trying to injure the Habs D, the gap between must be narrowed. The Bruins MUST be stifled in the neutral zone, so they have no speed coming across the blue line.
    Do that and the D the Habs have playing will look a lot better. Floating back, like Brière, Vanek and Patches cost scoring chances and goals.

    Still, I look at this playoff as a nice bonus before much of the team is dismantled and left to the kids coming up in the next 2 seasons. With less experience on D and up front, the Habs will be hard-pressed to make the playoffs.
    Can the run they are on now be kept up? Not if they don’t start outplaying the Bruins Tuesday night.

  46. Old Bald Bird says:

    A Few Notes from a Small Hockey Mind
    ===========================

    Price and Subban have been great, and some others have been good. The gunners haven’t been too special except for a few very brief flashes.

    If these two games don’t reveal that the Bears are a much better team, then I don’t know what would convince you. This doesn’t mean that I can’t envision an upset, but they have been utterly dominant for most of these two games.

    The boys are playing somewhat intimidated — surrendering the puck too easily because they know they’re going to get creamed.

    Counting the number of goals per number of shots can be instructive. In this case it isn’t. Carey has been phenomenal. Eventually, possession and chances will bring results. A finger can only plug the dam for so long.

    It would be so nice to have D options right now. I think that teaching Beaulieu kindergarten lessons is coming back to bite us. Can’t put him or Tinman in now IMO. Gotta dance with who brung ya. Boullion has played as well as possible, but a team relying on him is playing with fire.

    I wish I could do French, CBC has an anti-Hab bias. To blame a falling Subban for Thornton’s injury was ridiculous. As was the instant recovery.

    • Mike Boone says:

      I’m with you on every point, bro.

      Mike Boone
      Hockey Inside/Out blogger

    • BJ says:

      The old school mentality has cost us options with Beaulieu and Tinordi.

      • Cal says:

        Too inexperienced and that will lead to poor decisions with/without the puck.
        If that pair had played more this season, it is likely the Habs would have been on vacation at the end of the season.

        • Old Bald Bird says:

          Not the pair, maybe, but IMO Beaulieu showed readiness before the break IMO. I still think it was shortsighted send him down and keep him there for whatever reason. It has become a young man’s game much more than in the past. Now, are you going to break in two rookies next year or continue with sewing a patchwork quilt?

          • Cal says:

            I am expecting many changes during the off-season, so I don’t think the Habs will have as good a season as this one.
            However, I’ve said this before and it bears repeating: development is what Hamilton is for. Throwing players into the mix before they are ready, especially Dmen, can hurt the career of the young player. Detroit’s GM has the right idea. Develop the players in the minors, not with the big club.

    • Phil C says:

      Tinordi played 22 games, so he was given a chance and he played his way out of the top six. Agree on Beaulieu. He would be a great pairing with a vet like Weaver. Not sure how he would handle the physicality of Boston though. 

  47. boonie says:

    This is my first post-season comment.

    Every Hab fan loved the Tampa series. We rocked. We virtually never trailed. When we did, Plecs settled the score before Bolt fans had a chance to enjoy their PA announcer. Every break went our way. Carey found his game. PK found the fine line between control and chaos. The DD line amazed. Our secondary guys outplayed most team’s got to guys.

    That was the minor leagues. Yes Tampa finished above us. But they aren’t the Bruins. We’re up against the elite class now. Boston, LA and Chicago, are the league’s top tier. Their talent, compete level and mental toughness led to Cups. LA and Chicago rebounded against very good teams.

    Montreal Boston is always special. I hoped for to come home square. We did that. Price did all any goalie could do. PK stepped up his game and, largely, avoided the distractions that gets him off his game. Eller and Bourque – to my happy surprise – continued to play well above their regular season dopplegangers.

    I don’t buy the notion that “we won one we should have lost and lost one we should have won.” Boston outplayed us by a wide margin in almost every facet in game 1. We stole it. They outplayed IMHO by a narrower margin yesterday. We almost stole it.

    We played very well done the stretch. We leveled Tampa. As a few posters pointed out, we’re 18 months post picking third overall. This run is a bonus of sorts. And, those of us old enough to remember ’93 see us matching up well against the Rangers or Pens. Almost drooling for a shot at Lord Stanley’s silver thingy.

    Tuesday is gut check time. Are we ready to step up and play with the elite or are we the 2010 Habs reincarnate?

    If we play to or above the Bruins level, we’ve reached another huge milestone in our development. Rask doesn’t look like great. He’s not going to steal a game for them.

    If they outplay us again, I fear our confidence is fragile and our Cinderella ball might be close to striking about 10.30pm – not quite rats and pumpkin time, but late enough to notice the glass slipper might be chipped.

  48. BJ says:

    I would rather have clean, hard and fast hockey. But as long as there are teams like the Bruins running the ice with loose canons, I hope Bergevin goes out and gets a Psycho-Neanderthal to handle some of those meatheads (if not for the playoffs at least for the regular season) if @Frontenac is still conscious, suggestions are welcome.

  49. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Good morning, all. Great discussion. Think Yogi Berra.

    My RDS feed kept freezing and the best alternative (visually) was CBC. Did I imagine it, or did the commentary team actually do its best to blame Subban for Thornton’s injury?

    From a non-partisan, objective viewpoint, is there any case there at all? What I thought I saw was PK playing the puck, legs slightly splayed, facing the boards, and Thornton identifying an opportunity to lay a heavy hit from behind on the star of the series so far. Thornton missed and hurt himself.

    What did I miss?

  50. BJ says:

    The day after perspective might be; would you rather be this morning, a San Jose Sharks fan or a Montreal Canadiens’ fan? Its now a 3 out of 5 starting in Montreal.

  51. The Gumper says:

    Everybody just needs to calm down. We gained our split in Boston and virtually everyone in the commentariat would have taken that result at the outset. Sure, it wasn’t a great loss today but several of the goals were bounces off of our own guys so nothing to get your mittens in a bunch over. We got a couple of bounces in the first game, they got them in the second. That’s why we play seven game series. We are as a capable of knocking off the Bruins now as we were Thursday morning, with the exception that we now have home ice advantage. The team that wins this series will be the team that wants it the most. I like our chances….

  52. Da Hema says:

    While I was very disappointed with the outcome of this game, I also think there is a silver lining here. The Habs stole home-ice advantage from the Bruins, which may matter later. However, this will depend on whether Therrien can make the appropriate changes to the lineup. The past two games exposed a number of areas of concern for the Canadiens.

    In the playoffs, your key players should show up to play. Carey Price and PK Subban are doing so. Pacioretty and Vanek are not. If Vanek cannot contribute this series, the good news is the decision to re-sign him will be an easy one for Bergevin — simply let him walk to Minnesota. That may be what is on Vanek’s mind anyways. Not since Kovalev have I seen a player for the Canadiens score two goals and yet play an absolutely terrible game.

    The play of Brandon Prust and Andrei Markov is very disconcerting. Markov is looking very much like a 45 year-old defenceman out there. Markov is no longer able to control play, and the best he can do now is try to hammer the puck around the boards rather than provide his once-classic laser passes out of the defensive zone. If the Canadiens re-sign him for next season, that can only indicate how this team’s supposed core of promising defencemen are deeply overrated. I watched Tinordi in last year’s playoffs against Ottawa, and felt he was poised and effective on the ice — his statistics also indicated this. Therrien will not sit Markov, but all I can say is that Markov’s days as an NHL-calibre defenceman are over. The Canadiens are not a good enough team to keep a defenceman simply for power play purposes.

    I have my doubts about Prust too. If he is still injured, he ought not be playing. Why would Therrien not pencil in White, whose aggressive style suits playing the Bruins? White is physical and can also kill penalties. Prust looks slow, disoriented, and couldn’t take a pass if his very life depended on it. He is almost useless out there.

    The Bruins deserved to win the game. The Habs will not win this series with only Price, Subban, Eller, Desharnais, and Bourque playing to their potentials. At this point there are too many passengers to beat a team as good as Boston.

  53. CynicalHabsfan says:

    Bold prediction: if MT can use the last change to keep Chara away from the top line, I think DD will play a lot better… and Patch gets the gwg.
    Hopefully that home ice advantage everybody’s talking about is more than just Ginette Reno.

  54. Habitant in Surrey says:

    @J.P. Murray

    …I’m on iPod and can’t respond to You directly

    …but just want to say one of the best, most Real World comments tonight

    …maybe I with a tad more pie-eyed optimism that anything is possible until proven otherwise

    • third generation haber says:

      cheers Habitant in Surrey! I’ve never understood why my single-minded interest in the habs strictly focusing on winning a cup makes me less of a fan in the eyes of some posters. Is it the President’s Trophy we’re supposed to be gunning for or Stanley?

      j.p. murray

  55. kalevine says:

    Interesting stat re Price in the 3rd periods. He does not seem to make the saves in the. 3rd period that he makes in the first and second. There were stretches earlier in the game when bruins were being sent into the slot at will and he was stopping them all. Agreed that the system as a whole is to blame but price needs to make more big 3rd period saves. He needs to play the 3rd like he has been playing OT

    • third generation haber says:

      With the quality of the rubber he faces, with the screens he constantly faces, how can u criticize Price??? We’d be a wild-card team at best without him. You’re right in that he needs to be absolutely amazing at all times (or we have no chance in hell of winning). I think every team in the league, except for L.A., would gladly trade their starting goalie, straight-up, for Price.

      Our team has far greater problems. Have u seen any cup winners in recent history who’s first line was centered by a dwarf???

      j.p. murray

    • Just a Habs Fan says:

      That’s because he already has made them….can’t make the same saves twice in different periods

  56. ragethorn says:

    How many times this year will the pessimists count the Habs out? How many? Time and time again. We’re 5-1 in the playoffs. We haven’t lost a game since April 10th. Vanek got 2 tonight. PP is looking good. Price isn’t rattled. Sure it would be nice to win game 3. Honestly, as long as they show grit. Also, the ideal situation? Blow-out victory.

    • third generation haber says:

      I’m not sure what qualifies as a pessimist around here, but I’d certainly consider myself a realist. Those of us who don’t feel the habs are cup contenders, mostly older farts like me, have lived through many disappointments over the past 20 years; hab teams that got us excited only to let us down. To objectively look at the habs vs. the top teams in hockey, it’s almost undeniable to see that we don’t have the overall depth or size to go all the way.

      I suppose I sound pessimistic, but, see my post below, I’m very optimistic that we are currently following the path of the Black Hawks, Bruins, Sharks, Pens, Blues, and Kings, by drafting, developing, and retaining good players. Win or lose to the Bruins, we are developing depth and grit. We are no longer afraid of the Bruins and it shows.

      j.p. murray

      • ragethorn says:

        My apologies JP, my comment wasn’t towards you. I agree with everything you said. However, I have too much hope. I can’t help it. I said we were going to win game 1 and lose game 2. I wish it was a better loss but I can’t complain really. Game 3 with our fans, anything goes.

  57. third generation haber says:

    IMHO,

    winning this series is of little consequence to the habs. We aren’t cup contenders yet, but the Bruins are. They are a model of drafting, player development, asset and cap management. Their goaltending, team defense, toughness, and character are over the top. Yes, i know they also lead the league in a#$-holes.

    They have zero tolerance for hot-shot primaddona’s, as demonstrated by the Kessel and Seguin trades. They clearly play for the logo on the front of their jerseys.

    What is most important, I feel, is that we are learning first hand what a complete and deep team looks like in the Bruins.

    And we are certainly getting there! We have White, Parros, Tinordi, Moen, and Murray sitting on the sideline. In the past, our depth players included Kaberle, Weber, Blunden, and that Finish guy with bad knees (already forgot his name); Diaz was a regular for f%^& sakes.

    Now, our depth has improved so much that we, win or lose it is impossible to deny, can compete and even beat the Bruins. I credit MT with this.

    Moreover, the young core which started to form with Pleks in 2006 is now evolving into a core of young veterans (Pleks, Price, Subban, Pacioretty, Eller, Emelin). The Bruins have shown that raising and maintaining a group of players for several years can have huge benefits (2 trips to the finals).

    This is not going to stop! Gally, Chucky, Tinordi, Beaulieu, and Bournival are for real and the habs have (the Hockey News can verify this) knocked the ball out of the park in the past 2 drafts.

    Many of you feel the future is now, but I’d argue, it’s not just yet. If we do win a cup in the near future, I believe we’ll look back to our second round playoff series with the Bruins in 2014 as the most valuable learning experience our team received along the way.

    While I don’t believe we’ll knock-out the Bruins, I believe we are the next Boston Bruins (minus the scum-bag behavior and whining about refs.).

    IMHO, win or lose, we can’t lose (long-term).

    j.p. murray

  58. NightRyder says:

    This may get lost among us late-night Left Coasters, but I find it interesting.
    Because I continue to not be a Therrien fan and firmly believe he is an enormous factor in our third-period woes, I present the following stats from the last two playoffs, including today’s fiasco.
    Carey Price, third period – .778 save percentage, 6.61 GAA (give or take a minute or two, I rounded off the seconds). Carey Price, rest of games: .960 save percentage, 1.09 GAA.
    I don’t believe Price panics and becomes Andre Racicot playing blindfolded in the third periods.
    I do believe Therrien wets himself and makes poor in-game adjustments which fundamentally alter the way the team plays in a negative way, particularly when it has a lead.
    Talk amongst yourselves…

    • third generation haber says:

      While I don’t understand leaving Tinordi AND Murray out, I think MT is doing the best he can to win against a bigger, tougher, and deeper team. We are nowhere close to where the Bruins are in-terms of building a contender; we’re several years behind, but heading in the right direction.

      As for the third period collapse, I think the blame lies squarely on the Bruins. When they come full-force, teams don’t back-up, they get knocked backwards. I’m not sure many teams could have played the Bruins this hard through 2 games.

      j.p. murray

  59. Habcouver says:

    For a moment, just forget about the Habs’ first loss of the playoffs.
    Turn your attention to what the Ducks are thinking right now, giving up the tying goal with 7 seconds and surrendering the OT goal… at the Pond.

    As of now, Ducks loss home ice advantage.

    As of now, Habs have home ice advantage.

    We Are (Not) All Canucks.
    Proudly Canadian but passionately Canadien!

  60. CJ says:

    Vanek appears to have been the best regular season rental, while Gaborik, thus far, has proven to be the most effective postseason performer.

    LA and Chicago appear to be on a collision course. Not to put the cart in front of the horse, but if it materializes, that’s going to be an epic series.

    The Rangers have a very good chance of taking down the Penguins, although King Henrik has been off his game this postseason. Lots of hockey remaining friends. I’m hoping and praying Montreal remains a part of it. Game three should be a hinge that swings the door of momentum in one direction or another. Here’s hoping….

  61. WindsorHab-10 says:

    I think we have some Gooins fans posting crap on this site just to get us going. I think losing leads in the 3rd period is the result of trying to protect leads which has been proven many times to be a mistake. People talk about how great Boston is & they are but lets not forger they didn’t register their first shot in the 3rd until the 8 minute mark. Their comeback had more to do with us relaxing & making mistakes because of the 2 goal lead than Boston’s greatness in 3rd periods.

  62. HelluHabbies says:

    The sky is not falling….okay technically it is (especially when it rains)…but it seems mostly the dejected fan is on here. Habs need to win both home games 3 and 4. A split likely means the end because the longer this series goes on, the more the hits from Chara, Lucic, Iginla, Boychuck, and Miller are going to affect the health and play of the Habs. As always Habs need to skate skate skate and avoid big hits

  63. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Prediction: Rask will get jeered so bad that it will completely destroy any “confidence” he has. Habs take this in 6 or ill move to Russia!

  64. The Jackal says:

    I know would have and could have are not reality but it still helps to get perspective by switching games 1 and 2 around. Say we dropped game 1 and then won game 2? Great! It’s a different situation but we still have a split and best of 5 now at home.

    This may sound counter-intuitive but perhaps this loss was necessary to continue winning – Habs looked like they were getting complacent, comfortable, and a bit overly confident in their ability to win – we had been getting the bounces and that bailed us out a few times, perhaps too many times to realize we have to work on some things. Tonight Boston got the bounces, including a weird one on the tying goal, and that happens sometimes. If the Habs wake up after this loss to play their game and come out fast and furious then we will be even tougher to beat.

    ______________________
    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  65. montreal ace says:

    The teams overall performance has exceeded my expectations this year, based on what many experts said. The team is going in the right direction, and we are leaving Boston in a good position, after a bizarre playoff schedule which has hurt quite a lot. Boston could not have asked for a better schedule, lol, as they probably don’t need to. I want to see how we react now that things are becoming more routine again

  66. Habcrazzd says:

    Tough pill to swallow.

  67. NCRhabsfan says:

    So happy to be leaving the country tomorrow. Won’t be here to watch the crash and burn.I will be hugely surprised if the Habs win again. The only chance is Price wins it all for them. Too small, too slow on D. Pax is done vs Boston. He’s absolutely terrified against them. Needs to play in the other conference. Desharwho? Is he even playing? Gotta love Subban. Hope MT hasn’t so pissed him off that he is determined to play anywhere but Mtl. Wishing the boys the best but glad I won’t be watching it all come to an end.

    • HelluHabbies says:

      wow , the pessimism.
      Series isn’t over until one team has 4 wins.
      This is a Bruins fan looking for some interesting and mostly polite conversation. I, like most Bs fans, think the Habs make a habit of embellishing and diving, but perhaps that is the only way to combat the brutal physicality and stingy 5-5 play of the Bruins.
      When the Habs stay on their skates and play they are capable of some very nice hockey, which I thought Game 1 was. We’ll see how Games 3 and 4 go.

    • CynicalHabsfan says:

      Don’t take this the wrong way, but they shouldn’t let you back across the border if the habs manage to win the series.

    • Max says:

      We’re all happy you’re leaving too.

  68. AH says:

    What’s with our 1st line? are they proving to be regular season wonders? Gooins first line is dangerous everytime they are on. I think the Chara hit still haunts Max, Vanek is in a fog, maybe this war of a series is too much for him, and sorry folks, but DD, (although trying), is again proving that against a big strong team, in the war that is the playoffs, he is essentially a non factor due to his size.

    • CynicalHabsfan says:

      Patch is a streaky player, that’s not news. If he catches fire, watch out. Vanek hasn’t been very impressive, but he did score two goals today, both by parking himself in front of the net, which is exactly what we need him to do.
      Chara was matched up against our top line pretty much every shift they had (or so it seemed to me). Hopefully with the last change MT can get them a better matchup.

    • Habcouver says:

      Don’t be sorry. Our boys are out-sized, out-muscled, and perhaps even out-talented. I would not assess Vanek on one game. He contributed as well as could be expected today. Habs are tied 1-1 with the best team in the league; the first line should not be singled out for the loss. Instead, the team should be hailed for stealing home ice advantage.
      Win or lose the series, Habs are way ahead of expectations from the start of the season. Take pride and enjoy the positivity of being a true long-time (1969) Hab fan.

      We Are (Not) All Canucks.
      Proudly Canadian but passionately Canadien!

  69. Habilis says:

    Seriously though, who’s dumb idea was it to put 80 hours between games 2 and 3? Pittsburgh and New York will play 2 games before we play our next one. They play back to back in different cities while we stew for 3 days. Thanks, NHL.

    And if they put us in the afternoon again next Saturday… Well, I just won’t like it very much.

    • CynicalHabsfan says:

      Le Centre Bell is already booked Monday and Wednesday night. As much fun as it is to blame Bettman, this is Lana del Rey’s fault.
      However, feel free to blame Bettman for the afternoon game that we’ll almost definitely have next Saturday.

  70. CynicalHabsfan says:

    How anybody could blame Price is beyond me. Boston has clearly outplayed us so far. Besides the second period today, which might have been even, it hasn’t even been close. The fact that we’re coming home with a split is all thanks to 31.
    Price should have made more tough saves? That makes as much sense as saying PK should have set up more goals. If we play most of the game in our zone we’ll lose no matter who’s in nets.

    • Habcouver says:

      No cynicism with your comment. Well put!

      We Are (Not) All Canucks.
      Proudly Canadian but passionately Canadien!

    • Mike Boone says:

      Exactly right.

      Mike Boone
      Hockey Inside/Out blogger

    • third generation haber says:

      Further to your point, we’d likely have been a wild-card team at best had Price not dominated all season long. Forget about shots on goal, the quality of the rubber he faces is always high. His critics had better focus on the fact that we have a midget centering our first line.

      j.p. murray

  71. Chuck Kept Calm and Carey'd On says:

    Lots of negative nellys on here today spouting innumerable reasons why the Habs can’t possibly win the series. I think that folks that spout that point of view just want to set themselves up in case they do lose… then they can say “I told you so.” Instead, try getting behind the Habs. When they do win the victory will tase so much sweeter.

  72. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Just pick up the damn trailer for a change. How many times do they pass it to the damn trailer!


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