About this afternoon … (early bitter-disappointment edition)

StLouis

Home-ice advantage?
Gone.
Henrik Lundqvist Bell Centre Curse?
Gone.
Flying Frenchmen?
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.

Can they?

• 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.

 

91 Comments

  1. hockeyrealist says:

    @ Un Canadien errant : Such a long post I could not make it through, what is with all the multi-page posts on here lately? Decent points, but K.I.S.S.

    As you said, Weaver’s hit was fair, clean. Brassard was “admiring his pass” which we teach little kids not to do. I disagree that rules need to be modified regarding these types of plays. Keep your head up and feet moving and you would be in a scoring position not on your butt. That is part of what makes hockey the best sport period. I remember my VHS copy of “A time to remember – Road to the Stanley Cup ’88/’89″ (I think the right year, Gretzky’s last Oilers cup.) Gordie Kluzak made an awesome comment of how to win in NHL which still stands up today in playoffs I.M.O. : “If a guy passes the puck, eliminate him!”

    Game one was brutal to watch, afternoon games suck. Hockey day in Canada is a gimmick, Hockey Night in Canada is an institution! We cannot run and gun with Rangers, chip n chase, traffic and rebounds. K.I.S.S. Go Habs Go!

    “One defends when his strength is inadequate, he attacks when it is abundant”
    Sun Tzu

  2. Coach K says:

    Dear Habs players,
    I believe that with a few simple modifications you will win the next game. As such, I’ve taken the liberty of offering a few suggestions that you may (or may not) wish to consider…

    PK… its OK to haul the puck up the ice and gain the zone (that IS the purpose of a defenceman carrying it up the ice right?). But you must do it with a purpose. At the bare minimum, shoot on goal with the intent of scoring, shoot to generate a rebound that a rushing forward can work with or shoot to force an O-zone face-off that your team has a 50-50 chance of winning. None of these are bad plays. Turning it over because you’ve stick-handled yourself into their corner and find yourself pinned to the boards is not an option! That play puts you in no position to defend the resulting onslaught that you created! Just shoot OK!?

    Alexei Emelin…drink some strong coffee, espresso or anything and wake up!! Read the play properly at the O-zone blueline and recognize whether or not you have support before you decide to pinch! Otherwise, keep hitting like a Mack truck when the opportunity presents itself!!

    J. Gorges…I’ve watched you play for years now and do admire your defensive game. Sadly, you are much too predicable and easy to defend against in the offensive zone. Surely if I can see this so can every scout in the league. Why is your only play at the O-zone blueline to “slide it down the boards into the corner”? Show some imagination and have a little faith in yourself. Walk the blueline, find a seam and shoot on net for a change. You don’t have to shoot to score but you could at least, generate a rebound opportunity for your forwards to work off of. Every team out there sees you as no threat to score and plays you accordingly. Change it up man and surprise them all!

    T. Vanek, you must exert at least SOME defensive effort in your own end of the ice. Move your feet and use that big frame to box out other players and take the puck away from them. And oh yeah, you’re a sniper…shoot the damned puck instead of always passing it off!

    D. Desharnias…I respect your tenacity of late but you too are very predicable. You have an NHL caliber shot. Use it when you are the one in the best scoring position instead of always looking to pass. Force them to respect your shot! That way everyone on your line is seen as a threat to score not just your wingers.

    B. Gionta, do not play at the end of your stick in your own zone…you’re better than that. Get on the defensive side of the puck when it is on the boards and stay there with it until you’re sure it gets out over your blueline.

    T. Plekanec, stop playing like a little girl and cover the damned slot when your D are tied up behind the net or working in the corners!! Help them in the corners when you should. And oh yeah…try passing the puck once in a while on odd man rushes and winning a few face-offs.

    M. Pacioretty, how about you just pretend you have a 6′ 2″, 217 lb frame and use it that way to battle for pucks in all 3 zones instead of expecting much smaller team mates to do it for you. It’s embarrassing. Forget trying to stickhandle with those hands (at least until they get better at it). Instead, move your feet and fight to get that big body into better scoring positions so you can use that great shot of yours!

    All forwards in the D-zone…Be in position for the breakout rim-around outlet pass or the reverse outlet pass. Playing too high on their D just gets you stuffed when the puck arrives and negates your breakout.

    All forwards in the O-zone…remember that relentless forecheck you employed against the Bruins? Bring it back for game 2 and put THEIR defence on their heels for the next game.

    All forwards (again)…you remember that relentless forecheck I described above? Well how about an equally relentless backcheck (see Gallagher, B., Bournival, M)? Haul ass through the neutral zone and break up their rush BEFORE it gets to your blueline. That way you don’t have to try to contain them in your own end.

    Everyone…be alert and play off your toes not your heels!

    You can do it…best of luck!

    Coach K

    —When Hell freezes over, I’ll play hockey there too—

  3. Coach K says:

    Two words and three letters accurately describe yesterday’s debacle…

    Team defence MIA

    Sure, Emelin, Weaver and Markov looked like they were wearing tire tracks on their sweaters but to be fair, the lack of back pressure from the forwards was remarkable in its total absence.

    Rest assured Hab fans, they are 100% aware of what they are dealing with now. Adjustments will be made by both the coaches and the players…jobs depend on it!

    —When Hell freezes over, I’ll play hockey there too—

  4. Dru says:

    You have to win sixteen games to win the cup… but you can lose as many as twelve.

    • Coach K says:

      Way to get us focused Dru, because in the end, that is the only stat that really matters.

      —When Hell freezes over, I’ll play hockey there too—

  5. Un Canadien errant says:

    One train of thought before the initial game of this new series started was that the Rangers were an easier opponent than the Bruins, so they should be an easy out. Mostly because we don’t really know them, except for their stars like Rick Nash, Brad Richards and Martin St. Louis, who we were foggily aware were in scoring slumps at the end of the season and during the playoffs. Aside from that, we knew Henrik Lundqvist, knew that Benoit Pouliot had caught on with them, but that’s about it.

    Well Montréal fans, meet your 2014 New York Rangers, 7-2 victors over the home team on a Saturday matinée game at the New Forum. While it was a blowout, there are explanations if not excuses for the sluggish effort, lackluster concentration and discipline, and ultimately poor performance by vos Glorieux.

    While the team and its fans entered the game with carryover confidence from the previous series win against hated rivals and arch-villains Boston Bruins, we whispered amongst ourselves that there was a real risk that the Canadiens would be susceptible to a flat start, an emotional letdown.

    Further, the game being scheduled for a 1300 hr start for NBC’s sake augured poorly. RDS had a graphic that showed that the Habs lost the three ‘early’ games they played this season, two during the Super Bowl weekend, and one in the previous series against the Bruins on a Saturday at the New Garden. Benoit Brunet concurred, telling the audience that he used to “not have any legs” during matinée games during his playing career, that it disrupted his routine.

    With this in mind, we were looking for clues as to how the team would respond. After the national anthem, I cheered audibly when Brandon Prust was ready and eager to shake chanteuse Ginette Reno’s hand, but winced when Daniel Brière didn’t reach over for talismanic contact himself. To add to my discomfort, Peter Budaj wasn’t focused either, so when Ms. Reno walked by him where he was standing, she offered her hand high, ready for a five, just as he went low for a conventional handshake, so he ended up grabbing some forearm while she tapped him on the chest. Now, we don’t want to be superstitious, but these are details that are important, goldarnit.

    Early on, Mike Weaver laid a technically legal hit on Derrick Brassard, since even if the Ranger centre didn’t have the puck, he had been the last to touch it and was deemed to be ‘in possession’, as described in a section of Rule 56 which governs contact and Interference:

    Possession of the Puck: The last player to touch the puck, other than the goalkeeper, shall be considered the player in possession. The player deemed in possession of the puck may be checked legally, provided the check is rendered immediately following his loss of possession.

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/page.htm?id=26348

    So it fell in that acceptable no-man’s land of ‘finishing your check’ in the NHL. Mr. Brassard had just dished the puck and committed the cardinal sin of ‘admiring his pass’, I could hear Don Cherry fulminate from three time zones away. So he was fair game, got crunched by the Canadiens’ super-rental, and missed the rest of the game.

    Generally, if the NHL wants to make the game safer, reduce injuries, a really easy, low-hanging fruit is to end this concept of finishing your check, which is basically a licence for interference. Mr. Brassard had passed the puck, there was no play to be made on the puck. This was just an opportunity to beat on an opponent. The rule as it is administered favours a less skillful player, one who might be bigger or tougher, but not as agile on his skates, to catch up to a better player and still be a factor. It favours ‘heart and soul’ ‘grinders’, ‘energy fourth-liners’, over a skilled play-maker like Mr. Brassard.

    Note that I don’t fault Mike Weaver for his hit, it was clean and more than tolerable, all shoulder, and didn’t contact the head. But the standards need to evolve in the same way that the NFL has changed its rules to forbid contact by a defensive back on a wide receiver five yards beyond the line of scrimmage, known as the ‘bump zone’, and to protect its quarterbacks by forbidding defensive players from contact with the quarterback after he releases the ball. These changes opened up the game, made it more exciting, favoured the offence and scoring and spectacular plays, and protect the stars of the game, the QB’s. It allows these guys to be healthy and drive attendance and ratings.

    Critics of these rules howled that it would denature the sport, ‘kill the game’, and they could not have been more wrong. NFL football’s popularity has reached stratospheric heights and keeps soaring. The big problem which was envisioned, that defensive linemen wouldn’t be able to stop once they were close enough to hit the quarterback, has proved to be a non-issue. After a period of time, the players and the referees adjusted, and roughing the quarterback calls are no more debatable now than they were before, it’s just that the standards have been tightened, and less of it is allowed. The line has been moved, and no one really thinks this is actually a problem. If the tackler gets there as the ball is released, it’s a legal hit. If he takes an extra step, it’s a penalty. Simple. And defensive players have learned to, when they can see or feel that they may be a half-second late, to ease off on the hit, to hug rather than cream the QB, which buys them some tolerance from the officials. Everyone has moved on from that controversy, with happier fans even more ravenous for their game, and participants with fuller pockets.

    Aside from that unfortunate event, one Ranger stood out, and that is left winger Chris Kreider, who is physically imposing, but ever so fast on his skates. He blew by Alexei Emelin on numerous occasions like the latter was standing still. It brought back memories of my playing days, when opposing forwards would realize I wasn’t that agile a skater, and even less so going backwards, and couldn’t really pivot to my right, I could only go left. They’d lick their chops at the thought of taking me on on a line rush, and so will he the rest of the series unless Alexei and the Canadiens make some adjustments.

    Mr. Kreider drew the ire of Canadiens fans and players when on one of his awe-inspiring rushes, he crashed into Carey Price hard, skate blades first, and seemingly unaided by an opponent. No Canadien seems to trip or push him off balance. Carey went down, grabbed at his leg, causing every Hab fan’s heart to skip a beat. After a while, he shook it off, and stayed in the game, but didn’t return for the third period. Coach Michel Therrien said it wasn’t for injury reasons, but just to ‘protect’ him with the game possibly out of reach, the scoreboard showing 4-1 for the Rangers at the time.

    So speaking of player safety, this is another area that should be addressed. Because of the declining goal production in the league, with goalies becoming ever-more adept at stopping the puck, and coaches at installing defensive systems that thwart scoring opportunities, the league has fretted about producing more goals. One strategically suicidal way that coaches have come up with, and the league in its boneheaded way has essentially assented to, is that you have to ‘create traffic’ around an opponent’s net, you have to disrupt a goalie, get him off his game, get under his skin. You have to ‘crash the crease’, a practice that is actually relatively new, and didn’t exist before the invention of MaggNets. In fact, you used to be careful when coming into the vicinity of the goal crease when goalie cages were solidly anchored in the ice, lest you shatter your leg as happened to Serge Savard early in his career.

    Obviously, the pendulum has swung too far, and players now intentionally plow into goalies in their headlong rushes, sometimes with the help of a defender trying to keep them from scoring. Just as often though, an attacking player will use contact by a defender as justification or cover to make hard contact with the tender. They would have stopped, they imply, if not for losing their balance due to that very contact. It weren’t me, it wuz him.

    The time has come to change this practice, by simply putting the onus on the attacking player for avoiding any contact with the goalie. Make it a strict liability, like ‘puck over glass’ situations. It is the responsibility of the opposing players to stop in time, to avoid the goalie, no matter what the defender does. Concurrently, keep defending players from the little slashes, the medium hooks, the pushes in the back of the player with the puck. Give attacking players every chance to make a play, to shoot the puck, as long as they don’t pile into the goalie. There. Problem solved. Goalies are safer, but they allow more goals, since Sidney Crosby isn’t crosschecked or hacked every second he spends on the ice. Win-win.

    Another player who drew some attention on the Blueshirts was a kid named Ryan McDonagh, who’s a big strong defenceman who can rush the puck, and plays on their first pairing. He used to be in the Canadiens’ system, but was part of the package used to acquire Scott Gomez from the Rangers.

    http://rangers.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=531525

    He picked up one goal and three assists, and wowed a few fans with a rush off a faceoff that ended with a shot on Carey Price from in close. Now, the thing is, if he was still a Canadien, and in bleu-blanc-rouge, his four points, the four goals he created for the Rangers, they wouldn’t have happened, they would have gone our way instead. So subtract four from NY, add four for the good guys, instead of a 7-2 loss, the score would have been 3-6, we would have won this blasted game.

    So we can begin to see that the Scott Gomez, Tom Pyatt and Micheal Busto trade for Chris Higgins, Ryan McDonagh and Pavel Valentenko may have been ultimately ill-advised, and the pigeons are now coming home to roost. Imagine having Ryan McDonagh on P.K.’s left side, our first pairing would be tops in the league, with only the Chicago pairing of Duncan Keith and Keith Seabrook to compare.

    On the Canadiens side, there were few standouts, except for maybe the wrong reasons. René Bourque took three penalties, of the lazy-ish kind, hooks and holds. René has to play better, Alex Galchenyuk is waiting in the wings, getting ever closer to drawing in the lineup. René had a great first round against Tampa Bay, but was much milder, almost timid against the Bruins. If he doesn’t focus, if he reverts back to regular season, when he wasn’t hungry for the puck and determined with it, he’ll get bumped down or even out of the lineup. We’ll be watching him closely, I’m not sure if the big goal he scored in the second period did enough to outweigh the rest of his work.

    We have to discuss Brandon Prust, who took a double minor and a major misconduct for hacking and slashing at Chris Kreider, in obvious retribution for his slide into Carey Price. While the intent is laudable, and Brandon was trying to stick up for a teammate and send a message for the Rangers’ future reference, he didn’t go about it the right way, and it cost our team. It’s possible the game was already out of reach. Some interpreted Peter Budaj starting the third period as a surrender, but we have seen the Canadiens react positively to Carey being pulled, and storm back to win the game. The 5-on-3 opportunity given to the Rangers sealed the deal.

    Brandon is a veteran and we expect leadership from him. He’s not a Dan Carcillo or a Jordin Tootoo, a player who is a loose cannon who can just as much hurt as help his team. We’ve seen Ryan White be disciplined by his coaches for taking penalties like this. Brandon had to find a better way to equal things out, to send his message, not blatant stickwork while in the process of killing a penalty, in a new series that isn’t expected to be a goon show as that against the Bruins was.

    Brandon was supposed to bring a little extra against his old team, but he may well be the man who sits out, to subtract his journeyman skating and stone hands and replace them with Alex Galchenyuk’s.

    Overall it was an ugly game for us, but we can see it as a reality check, a wakeup call. The glow we felt for eliminating the thugs from Boston has to recede, and we need to focus on the task at hand. And it’s not catastrophic, after a bad first period, the Canadiens seemed to be finding their stride, and were taking it to the Rangers in the second period. The fans were even singing “Olé Olé” while we were a goal down, to the probable consternation of Bob Cole back at home, in all likelihood muttering to himself “Why are they singing? They haven’t won yet. No, baby.” The two quick goals at the end of the second cut out legs out though, and the failed penalty-kill early in the third was the finisher between the eyes.

    So now we get to regroup, and go back to the team’s creed: ‘Pas d’excuses.’ The rest of the games are evening games, the Rangers are at least as fatigued as we are with their two seven-game series behind them. We need to get to work. The coaching staff will probably make their adjustments and massage their lineup as they’ve done so far in the playoffs. The players will focus on the guys in front of them, not the apes in the rearview mirrow. They’re not going to be complacent or over-confident, they know they’re in a hole and have to climb their way out.

    And the over-confidence goes for the fans. I saw too many take these Rangers lightly. We have to be respectful. I, for one, am still predicting the Canadiens will win in four, but I’ll diplomatically concede that it’ll be accomplished with a greater degree of difficulty score now.

    ———————————————————————–
    My sources are unreliable, but their info is fascinating.–Woody Paige

    http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/

  6. aHabGrowsInBrooklyn says:

    Good news is… Habs lost badly to the Bruins in the matinée for the sake of gdmfNBC, as they did today, but all the rest of the games are scheduled for 8PM ET starts. Habs in 7. We’ll all go grey and then die of heart attacks, but our glorious team will play for the Cup!

  7. Marc10 says:

    Emelin and Markov were badly exposed in that game. To a degree I think it can be corrected, but for my two cents, I’d play the Pleks line with that duo and ask them to trap in the neutral zone.

    I’d put Chucky back in and would sub in for Bourni. I think Chucky and Vanek together could do some damage. Weise was like most of his teammates pretty bad last night. Couldn’t make a pass (or receive one) but I trust him to bounce back.

    We got nuked. Time to set and reboot.

  8. Louisville says:

    There is only one question! How badly is Price hurt? Given Henrik’s play today, it’s curtains if Price is anything less than 90%.

  9. Louisville says:

    All this and MB making noises about re-signing MT…it’s enough to drive one to drink…wait a minute…I’ve been drinking for hours…worst Saturday in years i think.

  10. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …don’t know about Youse hosers back East, but on CBC, showing George Strombo Show interview Gary Bettman

    …tomatoes READY !!! :)

    • hockeyrealist says:

      Saw that late night out East. Kinda of enjoyed it, but made it harder to dislike Bettman. He came across as a human being, smart, and kind of funny. Damn him! I liked his comment about not caring if he was robbed as long as his family was safe, (and his cash was in the bank lol).

      “One defends when his strength is inadequate, he attacks when it is abundant”
      Sun Tzu

  11. Timo says:

    I think the word “proud” has long left this organization. Proud of what? Not winning the cup for not as long as the leafs?

  12. HardHabits says:

    FUCALE!!!!!!!!!!

  13. habcertain says:

    I do think the longer stick of Tiny May help close the gaps, I know it won’t happen but Emelin would be a guy to sit, he has not stood out too often in the playoffs and may benefit from a look up high. Chucky should come in if healthy, I think Bourney is the guy I would sit. While Bork maybe the the people’s choice he has been putting up points. Prust was just looking for retribution, we still will need his grit.

    Finially, if Price is hurt we are screwed, and I think he is. Predicted the flat game, if we don’t win Monday, NY in 5. We peaked emotionally too early, it is on the coaches to get this back on track.

  14. slyCH says:

    RDS played a great piece on Steve Penney. I remember his out of the blue series. Lemaire’s system worked it’s magic for him and would have done the same for any 3rd rate goalie at the time. But I can’t deny, he was the first Halak. Cool story.

  15. HardHabits says:

    It’s pretty clear to me that the Habs need to insert Douglas Murray back into the line up. I am going over to EOTP to argue that point right now…



    :-D :-D :-D

    • johnnylarue says:

      Ouch! Glutton for punishment… ;)

    • Habitant in Surrey says:

      …I’m right behind You ! :)

      …by the way Dave, I received a Linked-In request from Berkshire, where he is advertising himself as an ‘on-line radio host’ …requesting Me to give him ‘a recommendation’

      …I don’t need a punchline, because THAT was the punchline :)

  16. CH Marshall says:

    Im glad I opted for lunch with a lady friend. Brought me back down to earth. Sometimes it’s still just a game.

  17. DipsyDoodler says:

    Afternoon games.

    Remind me again: where is NBC headquartered.

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

  18. habstrinifan says:

    I was totally out of ‘touch’ with today’s proceedings.

    I did post before the games that the ‘nerve’ factor which helps the compete factor seemed missing from the HABS based on all the comments coming from players/coachest etc. They tried to hide it but there was no sense of danger.

    What I dont understand though is the score. 7-2 could either be an anomaly or it could mean with two skating teams matched against each other the Rangers offensive ability is beter than ours.

    I hope it is the anomaly factor. If Rangers are 7-2 better than us when we play a skating game then I am more than nervous. I am worried. HABS can go back to a ‘trap’ style but we just dont have the personnel (like in 2010) anymore and so it wont work. Our success from now on depends on how we match up with teams relatively similar in skating ability… from rear-end to attacker. Those are the teams in the playoffs now.

    • Corporate says:

      In 2010 the reason was Halak period. I believe we have a better team than in 2010. We are more balanced this season. I truly think that we can compete. May be I am an eternal optimist.

      • PK says:

        I think this Habs team is quite a bit better than 2010.
        Price may be back?? Will see.
        Habs can still take this series esp. if they have their #1 goalie
        (and come to play).

        >>>>> Les Canadiens sont là

    • New says:

      Relax. The Canadiens can beat the Rangers when they decide to show up. Some nights they just don’t show up, regardless of the opponent. Remember Boston beating the Habs in game 5? The sulking petulant looks. That team was the same one who shut out Boston the next game, then performed so well in game seven. But to get to seven you have to have lost three.

      These guys have their destiny in their hands. The Rangers are a good team. They won’t roll over. But like the victories for Boston Montreal will give it away as today, or take it. If they give it away then frankly they’re not ready for the level of competition. Yes, some guys, Eller, Subban, Price, bring it all the time but others can’t play that hard, it isn’t in their nature.

      Two seasons ago the Canadiens finished third last. Last (short) season they made the playoffs and couldn’t get out of the first round. This year they made it through two rounds. Every game the GM and staff see tells them what they need and who is there to win and who is there for the dollars. All it needs now is to give the dollars to those who earn them.

  19. HardHabits says:

    TAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANK!!!!!!!!!!

  20. Reefer64 says:

    This site is so overly negative. We win you write as though they are the best team in the league but when they lose you write as though they are the worst.

    It’s one game where the Rangers revealed their entire hand with potentially 6 games left to go. We now know what their perfect game against us is.

    I have no worry in me at all. At the very least, the Habs WILL make this an interesting series.

    • ianism says:

      well said, apart from the Rangers showing their entire hand. hockey is more complicated than that. one team plays well, the other makes adjustments. then the first team makes more adjustments. and so on… that’s why best-of-seven series are so great – to see the changing tactics.

      the habs were coming off a hugely emotional series. they weren’t mentally ready (the rangers obviously were) so they got smushed.

      i’m excited to see Galchenyuk again. curious to see who sits for him, but i’d like to see him start on the 4th line with Briere and Wiese.

  21. lavie says:

    Just one game. No worry and it’s just a wakeup call to the team.

    Habs — Kings, 1993-2014.

  22. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Habs will win the series : D

  23. PK says:

    I think that the Habs will have a bounce back game on Monday.

    We are giving the Rangers too much credit.
    Sure, good team but not that different than the Habs.

    If Price is not in net, we still can do better than today.
    Here is hoping that he does not miss too much time.

    >>>>> Les Canadiens sont là

    • UKRAINIANhab says:

      EXACTLY! The Rangers are extremely average. If that. My prediction was habs in 5. Rangers aint that good as much as the Blogger here thinks.

      • CJ says:

        I’d be very cautious with that. I think we are very evenly matched. I think the team had a similar opinion going into this afternoon’s game, and it cost us. This loss should sober everyone up to the fact that the Rangers are going to be a very difficult out.

        Within 2.5 hours Henry put all those ghosts to bed. That, IMO, is concerning. It’s up to the boys to pull even on Monday night. I’ll be there, bringing my one luck with me.

        • UKRAINIANhab says:

          We beat the best team in the league in the bruins… There is no reason why we should lose this series in a perfect world. It also helps when Henrick takes shots right at him everytime. We’ll see what happens. Have fun @ the game!!!!

          • CJ says:

            I’m not giving up. I said Montreal in seven. My point is simply that there is lots of heavy lifting ahead.

  24. Max says:

    Why wasn’t that a-hole Kreider penalized on that Price crash.A player should be responsible for himself at all times.He wasn’t tripped and simply skated himself into Price at top speed and let the chips fall where they may.He’s about 6’4,230 so that had to hurt.Guys a jerk and he has to be neutralized on Monday.Cherry picker too.

    • CJ says:

      I agree with everything you said. That said, two things come to mind – firstly, the issue should have been addressed, especially in a blowout. Secondly, this is the playoffs. Why aren’t we going to the net hard? Max, Bourque, Weise…drop your shoulder and go for the far post. Shots from 20-40 feet without traffic are not beating Henry.

      This is war.

      • Max says:

        Agreed.The habs have some big,fast forwards but they were all lingering 20 feet from Lundqvist with little wimpy shots.They need to charge the net with authority and get dirty. Lundqvist doesn’t like players in his kitchen and he plays so deep in the net that a little crease crashing is on the agenda for the next game.

    • Coach K says:

      They can’t take him out if they can’t catch him…

      —When Hell freezes over, I’ll play hockey there too—

  25. JF says:

    I think Jacques Demers got it right when he said on L’Antichambre that he wouldn’t bother looking at video of this game. Ditto Therrien when he said there was no point making adjustments during the game because the players weren’t skating or executing. Adjustments would have made no difference. The team was crap almost from the opening whistle. Throw the video in the garbage, put the game behind us.

    Sometimes what a team needs is a good butt-kicking. This game reminded me of nothing so much as the 5-0 loss to the Capitals shortly before the Olympics. Someone on this site talked about that game just the other day, saying that it was Bergevin’s and Therrien’s reaction to it, a meeting behind closed doors without Price, that got the team re-focused and playing well. A similar re-focusing procedure is in order here.

    It’s fine to say we weren’t ready – and we clearly weren’t – or to talk about an emotional letdown after beating the Bruins. Okay, we were probably due for a letdown. But what about the Rangers? They also ended their last series on an emotional high. When is their letdown coming? Or will they be able to ride the emotional rallying-point of the death of St. Louis’s mother through the entire series? I guess we’ll find out.

  26. HabFab says:

    Missed my second game of the play-offs after also missing the 5th Boston game. Lucky I guess… but also because I expected a meltdown both times. This team is consistent in their inconsistencies.

  27. CHicoHab says:

    We don’t need changes. Only game 1. The only change we need is for MT to stand on a chair in the dressing room with mega phone screaming ” skate harder and faster!!!!! For F**K sakes!!!

  28. JUST ME says:

    I wish Boone felt that strong when the Habs win.
    Home advantage Boone ? Did we care about that since the begining of the playoffs ?
    Henrik Lundqvist Bell Centre Curse gone ? What do you know about it ? One game is enough for you Boone to conclude ?

    Yes the Habs can be worse in game 2 but can you Boone?

  29. Ian Cobb says:

    Not nice here! edit please!

  30. Corporate says:

    Ok… Everyone… Please chill. Yes we played bad but it would have no difference if we lost 1-0 or 7-2. A loss is a loss. Even if Price is injured I think we can still do this. We have a character team that will adjust. How many times did we see the habs play a stinker and then bounce back. Playoff series are not won with Game 1. Remember the conference finals in 2010? We won the first game and then lost the next 4. So the roles could be reversed this time.

    • Irishhabsfan says:

      I remember the series against the Rangers , 1971 I think, Rangers win the first at The Forum, our Habs the next four. One play inparticular still stands out in my mind,Laperiere picks up the puck behind his own net and stickhandles all the way up ice and deposits said puck in the back of the Rangers net.

      So, no worries yet!

  31. Lafrich says:

    I feel bad for the fans who spent a month’s pay to go to the game. There should be refunds for these kinds of performances. At least I got to turn it off and leave the room (and then throw my shoe at the TV, but I digress…).

    • JUST ME says:

      If it was a common performance as it used to be in the past decades i would agree with you but this season as much as we can say that we have enough for our money with tickets being soooo expensive i say it has been a good deal and today`s game although a tough pill to swallow is almost predictable sometimes.

    • Habitant in Surrey says:

      …I read somewhere the Stanley Cup series (if We make it there) at the Bell Centre will be in the $ 750 range

  32. CHicoHab says:

    Why blog about 3 stars whys and why nots?? Who cares.

  33. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Ok seriously. If we can beat Boston we CAN BEAT the AVERAGE New York Rangers. Yes I said it. This is the New York Rangers. Habs lost it themselves… Your right this isn’t Boston…. This is New York simple. Now win the next damn game

  34. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …Boone, I believe McDonaugh was selected first-star by CBC

  35. Ian Cobb says:

    Just one game!
    We let the Big Apple make sauce out of us today, but the pork chops get grilled on Monday!

  36. CH Marshall says:

    Whats the word on Price?

  37. zip by says:

    let’s have Galchenyuk and White in for the next game – Prust and whomever sits.

    • Corporate says:

      See… This is the Hab fan mentality in this city. If we lose sit half the team. Look it was not only Bourque and Prust that played bad but the whole team. Even if Price is injured we can still do this. Even though I believe the word that he is not injured, I highly doubt he will be 100% for Game 2.

      • CJ says:

        I agree – to an extent. A tweak here and there is not an overreaction. I’d say that there are likely 1 of 3 changes coming. More than one would be surprising. The biggest question is in goal. If Price is not 90-100%, we are in serious trouble. Plain and simple. I like Budaj, but he’s not going to win us the series.

        Again, we don’t need to press the panic button yet. It’s one game, and although the score was lopsided, it still only counts as a single win.

        • Corporate says:

          I agree, we may not win the cup but we can still win the series with Budaj. Price did not play well either. Budaj cannot play worse than he did today. If we bring our A game we can still do it. Sorry for sounding like Demers by being positive, but I find there is too much negativity after a loss. No matter how lopsided the loss was.

          • CJ says:

            I agree, it’s only one loss. It doesn’t hurt any more or any less than if we lost 2-1 in quadruple overtime. It’s one game.

            In fact, IMO, this should serve as a major wake up call for the fans, the organization, the media (Tony and the Dog segment….) and especially the players.

            IMO, it was the perfect storm. Bergevin giving a press conference. Talk of him having decided on an extension for MT. It was simply too busy. Need to pull focus and recognize the opportunity ahead of us. Again, there is no guarantee we find ourselves in this same position next year, the year after, etc. This game is rife with parity. We need to take advantage of our opportunity. We may not be back here again anytime soon (although I’m a hypocrite because I believe we will be even better going forward).

          • slyCH says:

            We played well in the 2nd until the mental laps in the last 2 minutes. It’s not impossible. But a few tweeks in the line-up are needed. Galchenyuk should play. Who sits I leave up to the coaching staff.

  38. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …well, Chuck definitely has to be found a spot if He is 100 %

    …Prust was likely standing up for Carey when He went ‘stupid’ on Kreider, but I think Brandon is the Guy Chucky is to replace for next game

    …I am also mulling Weaver to be replaced with Tinordi

    …Dream was all-World against the Loonie Beans, but with the Rangers speed We need a longer-stick than Weaver has

    …if Our Habs can’t beat the Rangers They definitely will not be competitive with LA or Chicago, …this is where Therrien earns His pay check and Our Guys reach down as We know They can
    _________________________________________________________
    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY
    http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=423049

    Campaign to Retire Toe Blake’s Number 6 !!!

    …and, last, but not least: BringBackOurGIrls !!! :(

  39. davecessna says:

    Hahaha

  40. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Remind me – are you the original “CONFIRMED” guy? Or are you making fun of the original “CONFIRMED” guy?

  41. UKRAINIANhab says:

    He is the original…

  42. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Well then welcome back!

    You’ve been gone a long time, and I presumed it was for the megatons of abuse you received (and appeared to invite!).

    Glad to see things getting “CONFIRMED” again (and looking forward to more abuse, too!).

    Cheers


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