Henrik Lundqvist Bell Centre Curse?
They play for the Rangers … plus a defenceman from Minnesota that’s pretty good.
Not much to discuss here, peeps.
Your Montreal Canadiens sucked the big one from the opening faceoff through the final siren. The home team “skated” to one of the worst playoff losses in the long, mostly-proud history of the franchise.
And they were undone by a quality that used to be the hallmark of Montreal hockey.
I’d love to read the Canadiens’ pro scouting report on the Rangers.
Did the word “speed” come up?
Because the guys in the white jerseys were not the Boston Bruins.
Or the Tampa Bay Lightning.
The Rangers won every foot race in Game 1. They won every puck battle. They threw up an impenetrable wall in front of Lundqvist, who could have spent the game playing video games on his cell phone.
No fewer than 11 Rangers got their names on the scoresheet.
Ryan McDonagh – pause for a brief crying jag and the ceremonial burning of the Bob Gainey effigy – had a goal and three assists. And the former Canadiens’ first-round draft choice was inexplicably omitted from the game’s Three Star selections.
Lundqvist was inexplicably included, along with Martin St. Louis, who opened the scoring, and Chris Kreider, possibly the fastest skater on a blindingly fast NYR team.
Shall we pick over the bones of the CH carcass?
Alexei Emelin had particular problems with the white jerseys whizzing around him. He took four shots toward Lundqvist and they were all blocked.
Rene Bourque and Brandon Prust combined for five minors (three to Bourque) and a misconduct to Prust.
The Rangers will spend part of Sunday attending funeral services for Martin St. Louis’s mother.
The Canadiens should devote part of the off-day to the video room, trying to figure out how they had the crap kicked out of them in their own barn.
Look, they were due for a letdown. The Boston series was a hard-fought, highly emotional crusade against the Forces of Darkness and Evil (for Game of Thrones fans, Bruins are Lannisters.)
But there are letdowns … and there are letdowns.
You can excuse a sluggish first period, in which the Rangers held a 12-6 shot advantage and grabbed a 2-0 lead.
But where was the surge when Bourque scored to make it 2-1?
Michel Therrien said his team was “not ready physically or mentally – not ready to compete.” The stomping, he added, would bring his team “back to earth”. Therrien promised the Canadiens would be ‘more alert” and competitive in Game 2.
The medical term for being less alert than the Canadiens in Game 1 is “comatose”.
And if they’re that bad in Game 2 …
This Rangers team is coming off a series in which they shut down Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and James Neal.
They’re not going to be in awe of David Desharnais, Max Pacioretty and Brendan Gallagher.
The good news is your Canadiens can’t possibly be any worse in Game 2.
• Therrien danced around the issue of whether pulling Carey Price for the third period was related to the knee knack the goaltender suffered in a collision with Chris Kreider.
• Will Alex Galchenyuk draw in for Game 2. If so, who sits? Rene Bourque? Brandon Prust?
• The Rangers won the opener of their second-round series in Pittsburgh. Then they lost three in a row.