Audio: Lineup intact to meet Rangers tonight

The Canadiens will make no lineup changes for tonight’s game against the New York Rangers, which puts goalie Cristobal Huet on the backup stool at the end of the bench and defenceman Patrice Brisebois and forwards Tom Kostopoulos and Bryan Smolinski in the press box.

Roughly 25 minutes of audio to share following this morning’s game-day skate, in which everyone but Alex Kovalev took part. Kovalev took a therapy morning, but will be in the lineup tonight.

Defenceman Josh Gorges, on not fighting Philadelphia hulk Jim Vandermeer on Sunday as he listened to the shouted advice of goalie Carey Price to not take a penalty with Habs’ Francis Bouillon rushing up ice, about to score a goal. With more on the Canadiens’ difficulties with the Rangers. Clip runs 2:43.
Bryan Smolinski on being a healthy scratch Sunday and tonight. He might not be overjoyed by the situation, but being a veteran, he understands it "with a lot of guys playing very well." Clip runs 0:29.

Alex Kovalev, the Canadiens’ leading scorer, on the idea that he’s a marked man tonight in retaliation for his hard check of Ryan Hollweg the last time the Canadiens met the Rangers. With more, including comment on the intensity of the Habs dressing room heading into the third-quarter of the season; the physical pounding he took down in Florida, including a busted lip and sprained ankle ("Go back to the old rules with hooking and grabbing, this is just chocolate with nuts," he says happily); the type of player he thinks linemate Andrei Kostitsyn can become; and how this is the fun time of the season, with the playoffs on the horizon. (Kovalev has a videotape in his hand, which explains the first few seconds of the audio.) Clip runs 8:23.

Tomas Plekanec on the challenge of the Rangers, their superstar Jaromir Jagr, on how Kovalev "will take care of himself," and the feeling of first place – "We’re not there yet," he says. Clip runs 3:17.

Plekanec again on "living a dream" with the Canadiens, and how the mission won’t be complete without a Stanley Cup. Clip runs 0:15.

Head coach Guy Carbonneau with his wide-ranging pre-game comments in English. He discusses rotating his players to keep them fresh; Michael Ryder and Steve Bégin being "really good" on Sunday; the Rangers’ physical style ("we’ll respond to that," he says); keeping his Sunday lineup intact; the intensity in the dressing room at Game 60; how he’d feel going to the playoffs with his current roster should the Canadiens not move before next Tuesday’s trading deadline; and the performance of goalie Carey Price since the 20-year-old was recalled from Hamilton. Clip runs 6:37.

Carbonneau with his pre-game comments in French. Clip runs 4:18.


  1. Shobud says:

    Thanks Dave Don’t worry about the stuff they say..Most of us have heard the word DAMM before.LOL Thanks again for all you do.. Its just great

  2. doug says:

    Posted this on the Boone thread but thought it was cool enough to post where others might find it, too:

    Customize your own Habs shoes at the attached. I just designed some and it was easy and fun. I’m not a sales rep – don’t worry!

    Go to “sports section” to get the NHL logos and design away.

  3. HAB-PROFESSOR says:

    thanks for the acknowledgment 24cups…much appreciated.

    maybe at the right time (soon, with the trade deadline approaching)
    I’ll copy and repost.

    1. Thank GOD we have Alex Kovalev… his PRIME
    2. The BELL CENTRE should be rebuilt to sit 80,000 fans
    3. Your’re not a Hab fan till you watch & UNDERSTAND “The Rocket”
    4. We will win the CUP

  4. 24 Cups says:

    HP – You wrote a great emotional piece on Vinny and Beliveau a few days ago that some people may have missed because it was posted at the ‘end of a thread’ that was replaced later that day. Anyway, I’m not sure that it was given the proper exposure and I just wanted to let you know that it was read and appreciated.

    The Original 24 Cups

  5. TC says:

    That’s a good description of what Gino Odjick contributed to the Habs. Shouldn’t we expect a little more from a guy who was a second round pick ??


  6. Corio says:

    Let’s go Price! Put up the STONE WALL BABY! :)

  7. Will Longlade says:

    I would like to see Grabs utilized as a role player during the playoffs. I think he can add some speed and offence.

  8. HAB-PROFESSOR says:

    BIG PHYSICAL TEST…WE NEED TO USE OUR SPEED….I hope the refs are ready with their whistles and shut down THOSE BASTARD GOONS.
    1. Thank GOD we have Alex Kovalev… his PRIME
    2. The BELL CENTRE should be rebuilt to sit 80,000 fans
    3. Your’re not a Hab fan till you watch & UNDERSTAND “The Rocket”
    4. We will win the CUP

  9. HAB-PROFESSOR says:

    give him a break…he is VERY STRONG around the boards and has been hitting big lately…we need size.
    1. Thank GOD we have Alex Kovalev… his PRIME
    2. The BELL CENTRE should be rebuilt to sit 80,000 fans
    3. Your’re not a Hab fan till you watch & UNDERSTAND “The Rocket”
    4. We will win the CUP

  10. cautiousoptimist says:

    I’ve got absolutely no problem with Hollweg not being in the lineup… One less cheap shot artist to worry about.

  11. The Teacher says:

    We can think about it this way.

    Because taxes are so high, this is overpaying Richards, which we have to do. Now consider it as 6.6 million because we had to give him an extra 1 mil for the taxes.

    Is he worth 6.6?

  12. The Teacher says:

    Modry is a pretty good PP defence-man if I’m not mistaken. However he only has 6 points in 61 games this year albeit with a +2.

    Seems your assessment of being a depth guy is pretty much correct.

  13. HKisses says:

    Yup i agree….jus felt that i’d share the news :-O

  14. 24 Cups says:

    HK – I see him as more of a depth defenseman, he’s not going to change the balance of power. Philly loves to collect these type of guys on the back end.(half of them are always hurt) I’ll take O’Byrne over Modry hands down.

    The Original 24 Cups

  15. HABSFAN - NJ says:

    yes dave thanks — ive become a much bigger HABSFAN with sites like this!! this helps to keep a guy here in jersey informed on his favorite team — GO HABS GO — cant wait to get up there for saturday night!!

  16. HKisses says:

    The Los Angeles Kings have traded defenceman Jaroslav Modry to the Philadelphia Flyers for a third round pick.

  17. Morenz7 says:

    Looks to me like Komi, not Kovy, is the marked man tonight from the Rangers’ p.o.v. (see below).

    Whatever: I’m sure Mike will be able to take care of himself. What kills me is that it was Hollweg who served up the dirtiest play of the night in the last game. He should be the marked man. But it sounds like he might not even be in the lineup.

  18. HKisses says:

    Philly just aquired some defence,Go to TSN.CA (to lazy to copy the link)

  19. mjames says:

    Too expensive


  20. johnnyhab says:

    with the Habs missing the playoffs last year won’t Guy be up for coach of the year?

  21. wd40 says:

    “chocolate with nuts”… gotta love Kovy. I know we’ve all said it many times, but the way this guy turned himself around is phenomenal.

  22. Gelineau says:

    I’d just like to give my thanks for audio pieces such as this and all the inside information you guys post. As a Quebecer living in Central/North Texas for the last 8 years what this site provides on a daily basis for this die-hard (and surely many others) Habs fan is priceless.

    Merci bien.

  23. OldGrover says:

    Well, we really appreciate it – most news sources gives us the 5 seconds of audio that fit whatever agenda that source is pushing, nice to hear the whole thing

  24. 1010 says:

    Couldn’t agree more. Latendresse has been invisible for a stretch. I know he’s only twenty, but he’s got almost two seasons under his belt. He should have figured out by now that he has to bring it every night. Or maybe, the way he has been treated, he’s figured he doesn’t have to bring it every night.

    GO HABS.

  25. Dave Stubbs says:

    Happy you enjoy it, J.T. It’s fun assembling and uploading it for I/O visitors.

    The material is uncut because a) I believe our readers like the unblemished, raw words from players and Carbo, or b) I’m too lazy to edit it into neat, clean clips. I’ll let you decide!

    Dave Stubbs

    Habs Inside/Out
    Sports Feature Writer, Montreal Gazette


  26. nightmare_49 says:

    Carbo has stated that Lats is the second coming of Michel Goulet (ex-Nordique). In Goulet 1st two seasons in the NHL he had 54 goals and 71 assists for 125 points in 153 games. Lats #’s – 30 goals and 19 assists for 49 points in 136 games so far. Goulet’s NHL numbers : 548 goals – 604 assists for 1152 points. Time for Lats to pull up his socks especially in the assist department. In 136 games only 19 assists , that’s defensive “D” man numbers. Hint for Lats: pass it to your own players and you’ll get results.

  27. J.T. says:

    Thanks Dave, for the audio. I love the uncut versions of what they have to say.

  28. the Maritimer says:

    He would be worth it on a good team, like Montreal. Tampa has no goaltending and little defense. No wonder his plus minus is so bad.

  29. Canus says:

    Anyone know where to catch the game online tonight?
    normally I go here:
    but, they’re down for some reason, anyone know
    of any other streams for Habs games?

  30. TC says:

    And Latendresse is playing because ….


  31. Will Longlade says:

    After the trade deadline the CBA allows teams to increase the size of their rosters at their discretion. I think we will see Chipchura again and he will play a role in the Hab’s success during the playoffs. Smokes is sitting mainly because of his poor execution on face-offs and the fact that he’s terrible at clearing the puck from the D-zone during PK’s.

  32. teamplayer says:

    yeh i do what i can for the team. :)
    yeh i am actually currently looking at montreals overview and its got me thinking about restricted free agents and whom kevin lowe (or others) would like to make a bid at. the only player id hate to see get bid at would be andrei kostitsyn, hopefully the thought of him and his brother playing together wont make him greedy for cash. But i’m not too worried about the other players, maybe a little for gorges and o’byrne, but if others get bid on, id probably say let them go, if anyone of them gets ridiculous amounts in the penner range (4.25/yr) we get a 1,2, and 3rd pick for a deep draft in 2009.

  33. HKisses says:

    maybe break a leg or two each

  34. Blitzen says:

    Smokes and BreezeBy should plan a ski trip together in the Alps.

  35. HKisses says:

    Same im at work,cann’t download em :-(

  36. Blitzen says:

    Still, it’s more encouraging than if he was sitting at 10%. He could be Koivu’s eventual replacement. But we still wouldn’t have a Big C on the first two lines. I guess we could go with big wingers.

  37. krob1000 says:

    Damn it…. I wish I could hear these.

  38. showey47 says:

    I posted that idea a couple of weeks ago, he does have incredible vision and playmaking abilities. According to he is 50% in the faceoff circle but i doubt he has taken more than 10 draws.

  39. sam says:

    couldn’t agree with you more. it’s more than time to give him some AHL playing time. he needs it. plus, Lats has been rewarded by joining the Koivu line on and off these past few weeks and join them on the PK when SK isn’t there.

    and why aren’t they bringing back Chipchura now that they’ve soured again on Smolinski? how was Chippy on faceoffs?

  40. cautiousoptimist says:

    To be fair, Lats has 14 goals to Ryder’s 9. But I’m with you on Lats – maybe Chipchura or Grabovski could make better use of his spot for the time being.

    I’ve got to believe that Ryder will snap out of it, if only because of a gut feeling.

  41. Ian G Cobb says:

    Gee showey, I hope you don’t loose it if it comes off.!!!

  42. Blitzen says:

    Would you play Grabs on the wing?

    Just read somewhere somebody suggesting that the Habs could try to convert SKoz into a C, since he has such great vision. Might be something to think about…

  43. B says:

    Smolinski: $2M 0.4ppg -6
    Holik: $4.25M 0.36ppg -15

  44. cautiousoptimist says:

    Good find, teamplayer. Another good one is

  45. cautiousoptimist says:

    That sounds interesting, but like Chris Aung-Thwin said on here, Buffalo’s GM will lose his job if he lets Campbell get away after losing half the team last summer.

    I agree too with a couple of posters on here who say we need offence and size more than defence. A big tough 20- or 25-goal guy would be nice to have.

    I may end up eating my words here, but I don’t see any one-for-one deals coming up. We’ve got three guys in the press box on any given night, and Ryder ($3M), Kostopoulos ($900k) and Dandenault ($1.8M) can’t be happy with their ice time. It doesn’t make sense to sit anywhere from $3M to $6M every night. Since Gainey doesn’t seem to trade quality away (especially young quality), maybe he’ll trade quantity for quality.

  46. TC says:

    Happy to see Ryder getting another start. I thought his game in Philadelphia was one of his best this year. If he can get his game back it just makes the Habs that much better.

    On the other hand, I find it amusing that Guillaume Latendresse keeps getting a free pass. With no points in his last nine games, and only 1 point more than Ryder (whose played in 6 less games) and only 2 more points than Smolinski (whose played in 11 less games)it’s time for him to sit.

    Personally, I think a little spell in Hamilton would do Latendresse good (seemed to work for Price)and probably should have happened a month ago. After all, why not reward Michael Grabovski (AHL player of the week). Maybe he could provide a Sergei Kostitsyn type spark.

    Besides could he contribute any less than what Latendresse does now ??


  47. nightmare_49 says:

    We definitely don’t need a small “D” man with a big salary just an inexpensive veteran Ken Daneyko type would do find for a short time , thank you.

  48. teamplayer says:

    i know people have asked before but i have fount a site that has a list of all players who are either unrestricted or restricted
    does anybody know what UFA, VI means?
    and as what chris aung-thwin stated in the worst case scenario for our goaltending situation. and although there are alot of crappy and old goaltenders there will still be 27 unrestricted free agents that are goaltenders, so if we cant sign huet or danis and halak leaves to europe we still have quite the list to choose from.
    goalies who have done pretty good for their team this year and could backup price nicely: dan ellis nsh, ty conklin pgh, jose theodore col (imagine bringing him back?)

  49. showey47 says:

    Laughing My Ass Off

  50. Ian G Cobb says:

    showey— what does lmao mean.? or anybody.

  51. yukonhab says:

    It is a nice surprise to see Price possibly getting the nod. I figured that we would have Huet tonight and Price back to play the Pens. But maybe we’ll have Carey for a majority of the games left, which would be GREAT. I think we will make a trade to pick up a 3rd line center and a top 6 defenceman, for some depth down the stretch.


  52. G-Man says:

    Baaa…. woops! Wrong bleat!


  53. NightRyder says:

    Don’t need Campbell in any way, shape or form. If he didn’t cost too much, I wouldn’t mind seeing Bobby Holik to replace Smolinski for the playoff run.

  54. NightRyder says:

    Richards isn’t worth his fat salary. Terrific player, not worth $8M. We’ve got too many good young players to extend.

  55. carmine007 says:

    That sounds awesome!

    Only if he signs an extension for 2-3 years for reasonable money. plus the 2nd rounder is a bonus!!!!

    It’s NEVER over til it’s OVER!

  56. the Maritimer says:

    I agree. Brad Richards apparently is available and I’ll keep on beating that drum, because LeCavalier won’t sign here.

  57. krob1000 says:

    We have too much cash tied up in our back end and Komisarek is going to need a big raise. I am hearing 6 milion dollars as beign the figure Campbell wants….not a a snowballs chance in hell. We have two 5 million dollar defenseman and several cheap one coming up the pipeling. We have built from the back out……the goaltending is secure (unless Chris’ nightmare scenario of Halak going ot Europe, Huet leaving and danis getting picked up were to play out). The defense is very stable and probablyt he biggest reason we have had the success we have. I think a number four guy would be awesome for this year but I wouldn’t overpay for that as Bouillon on any given night is a top four. The unfortunate thing about Frankie is some games he just doesn’t have it. If he were more consistent and played the way he is capable game in and game oout we would’t have that need. Then we have O’Byrne, Gorges and the prospects. WE are fine on the back end. The only problem going forward is with offense and it will be addressed as soon as humanly possible by Gainey.

  58. Cable Guy says:

    Buffalo would never make that trade.

  59. Sakus Evil Twin says:

    Here’s a trade idea… and forgive me if it’s been thrown out there before…

    Brian Campbell: for Mark Streit and a 2nd rounder?

    I’ve been a HUGE fan of Streit, but for Campbell I would give him up.

    Can we afford him?

  60. Stephen York says:

    Contrary to what most people have said, I think the Habs played a solid game on Superbowl Sunday against the Rangers.
    We never gave up, and had many solid scoring chances after the initial 3 goals.
    Unfortunately, neither did the Rangers. They put in a solid effort, and beat us fair and square.

    I forsee another exciting game tonight. If the Habs play with the same intensity they have been showing of late, and if Price can put in another solid performance, we should be able to finally beat these guys.

    I want to see Begin and Ryder dressed again tonight, and Smolinski looking down from the press box.

  61. G-Man says:

    Nice to hear it all, uncut and spontaneous. This site provides us fans with more info, more fun and thoughtful posts than anywhere else. Sure, I may be a pain in the ass when I rant and rave, but I expect folks to do what I do and skip posts that are too long or disagreeable.
    The emotion for our team is really picking up, especially with the latest success during this, “The Season of Slack-Jawed NHL Prognosticators.” I have to admit that I ,too, have disagreed with Carbo on the line changes and so on, but I cannot argue with results. No one thought the Habs were anywhere near this good, or Kovalev was capable of pulling out his GREATEST season ever, so let’s sit back, crack open a cold one and enjoy the best Habs team in 15 years.


  62. HKisses says:

    Just Imagine my name is FOR-FACTS-SAKE
    So Guys considering Price played the last three games ….This will be his 4th start NOOOOO?

  63. Shiloh says:

    Listening to Kovalev talk about AK46 was great. He said the three things a forward has to be able to do are skate, control the puck and shoot. (I would love to mention one of our regulars at this time who can’t do any of the three but I won’t). Kovy also said that Kostitsyn can “change his game” and not do the same thing all the time and that the sky’s the limit for him. I believe that AK46 could become a superstar if he keeps improving. He is absolutely untouchable as far as I’m concerned.

  64. johnnyhab says:

    Guy is going with the hot hand….who can blame him there?

  65. habitual says:

    I am recanting my comments earlier this season when I advocated trading Huet. I’m throwing in with Pat Hickey: We need Huet and his experience – the experience that got us to the playoffs.

    There isn’t a goalie in the league that doesn’t cool off (including Brodeur, Luongo, Hasek)and, like me, some posters have forgotten that Price cooled off and Huet came in and played back to back to back solid games.

    In fact I’m at the point where I would be reluctant to make a trade at all. 60 games in this team has proved consistent, resliant and at times brilliant. Team chemistry is a funny thing but our quarks and neutrinos have binded well. A trade can cause an unpredictable chain reaction that could undo our critical mass.

  66. Jonnyboy says:

    The only trade I would like to see at the moment is for the Habs to go get Gratton.

  67. G-Man says:

    Geez, I didn’t know there would be a quantum physic quiz! Dang, I forgot my notes! :)


  68. nick says:

    I agree. Gotta put Price back in tonight.

    Carbo said he was going with the hot hand. If he starts changing his mind now, and tinkering whenever he feels like it it’s going to send our goal tending to the dumper.

  69. Jonnyboy says:

    Only makes sense to stay with Price, he has played strongly. They have to keep playing him if he is playing well, or send him down. He needs to play.

  70. showey47 says:

    Agreed, between the whl, wjc and ahl price played 82 games last year and still had the strength to carry a team on his back to an ahl title. The guy is a workhorse and needs to play often.

  71. Mr.Hazard says:

    Yes… Yes definitely Price… He is right, after all…

    Ex nihilo nihil fit

  72. HKisses says:

    Where are all the Guy haters/bashers?

  73. krob1000 says:

    They’ll come out if he doesn’t dress Ryder after playing one of his better games. I am not a Carbo basher (furthest thing from it) but you all know I feel about the Ryder thing…..we are better when he is in the lineup….it is that simple.

  74. Ian G Cobb says:

    They switched to ping pong, they comprehend that game a little better.

  75. habsgod says:

    jonnyboy i hope they don’t pick up gratton this would be a disaterous trade!gratton is almost done is very slow and can’t skate he’d never keep up with our fast forwards!he’s got size !yes but he’s almost done!and would contribute nothing!

  76. RGM says:

    Put him on a line with Latendresse and Dandenault and you won’t really notice the lack of speed.

    See you April 5th at the Bell Centre!

  77. Pay Julay says:

    Obviously you’ve never watched Dandy skate!!! He’s one of the better skaters on our team!!!

  78. mrstewart61 says:

    me too, replace smolinski

  79. Will Longlade says:

    Trent Hunter would be a much better addition and he’s UFA at the end of the season.

  80. nightmare_49 says:

    Jonnyboy – We hear you , are you lacking attention.

  81. Sbah Reverof says:

    Of course Price should get the start, the kid is effin’ hot right now. Props to Huet, a real team player. On such a young team, we need all the talented veterans we can keep.

  82. HKisses says:

    That i have to agree with you…Ryder really deserves to play after the last game, he played really well. If we can get a performance out of him like that every night..I’d be satisfied and wouldn’t trade him

  83. Habs_008 says:

    I would try and get something for him. he is an UFA and i dont think BG is going to sign him after this year. The player i wouldnt trade is Huet. I would sign him for another year or two. Huet did struggle, but he is one of the reasons we are where we are.

  84. habitual says:

    Today is recant day for me. I am re-thinking trading Ryder. I don’t think we’ll get a cup of joe for him so why bother? And I have noticed in the last several games that he’s played he brings a physical presence. Yes, we need scoring from him, but he creates some room for Saku when he steps into people.

  85. Samantha says:

    I would actually sign Ryder to another year. Somebody mentionned it here that we could probably get him for cheap, I say about half of what he’s earning now. If he breaks out of his slump, then we’ve got a 30 goal scorer at 1.5mil. If he doesn’t start scoring, but he plays the way he’s been playing, then we’ve got a better/more promising/tougher Dandenault who we know can score. Let’s not give up on this guy! What better way to give him confidence then by signing him again?

  86. Blitzen says:

    If you’re Ryder, do you feel like resigning with the Habs for half of what you were making? He’ll get more on the free market…

  87. showey47 says:

    All i’m gonna say about this is, put yourself in ryder’s shoes. He has been made the scapegoat and paid the price by sitting in the pressbox while guys like dandy and lats get a virtual free ride meanwhile killing ryder’s confidence. Would you want to come back? You can guarantee that some g.m. in the league will offer him a 3 year deal on july 1st at more than 1.5 million. I get what you are saying though, i know he will regain his scoring touch i just don’t think he will accept another one year deal from us when he will get more somewhere else.

  88. Mr.Hazard says:

    Maybe a bit less pay, with bonuses? I think he adds something to the line-up too. I was pissed after he played real well during the Rangers game a couple Sundays ago, and then Carbo sat him for like 4 games!!

    Ex nihilo nihil fit

  89. Ian G Cobb says:

    Ryder is a big part of this team, he has moved over a little without complaining. Players have been tried all over the line up, so when the playoffs start, and we come up against different styles of opposition, Guy will have a better idea of whom to dress. He will be a great player for us in the playoffs. I don’t care if he only gets a few more goals, as long as he continues to play tough possessional type hockey, like he did last game.

  90. nightmare_49 says:

    Krob – I don’t know how you feel about Ryder. If possible can you give me a summary of this in a 1000 words or less,lol.

  91. krob1000 says:

    lol….not a chance …….pictures get hung and so did Ryder all year……what picture isn’t worth a thousand words????

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