Bench Talk: Week 8

Playoff bound. (THE GAZETTE/John Mahoney)Playoff bound.
John Mahoney, The Gazette

As always, it was a big week for Habs fans with much to discuss:

• Montreal clinched a playoff spot
• Toronto clinched an early summer
• Patrick Roy (et fils) clinched a suspension
• Guy Carbonneau clinched the ‘Worst Tie Award’ (my apologies to Mrs. Carbonneau)

Here is a selection of some of the best user posts from the past 7 days.


Some comments have been edited for length.



I dont know why everybody keeps pointing out the Habs less than stellar home record without making a the point that they have excelled at home for most of the year. I may be slightly off here, but their record at home earlier this year was something like 6-8-3, which means theyre somewhere around 14-5-3 since then, not too shabby at all…

Submitted by Grabbed The Cup

quick trivia question
who leads the Canadiens defenseman in plus/minus for the second half of the season?

Ryan O’Bryne +10

Submitted by ebk


It’s an amazing feat this year to be the first Eastern Conference team to make the playoffs. We have to give Carbo and Co. a lot of credit. They have taught and guided a young team to a level no one thought possible this year. Kovy provided great leadership with his inspired play and new determination. The addition of S.Kostitsyn created another offensive scoring line threat when Carbo finally put the pieces together.

Koivu wanted a contending team and he surprisingly found one right at his feet. I thought earlier in the season he was getting a little worn down but his play the past few weeks has been key to the teams success. Maybe not on the scoresheet but he isnt the Captain for nothing. Ryder finally found the game he had been looking for all season. Higgins cant score from 5′ out but his hard work never stopped and looks very good on the third line. I hope Begin can keep himself healthy for the playoffs. Hammer on D was the best addition Bob could have made. It really shored up a unit that was questionable heading into the season.

Goaltending has not been a concern all season and will be the solid foundation for this team for years. Can Price get better experience than this year? Not to leave anyone out, every player has made a solid contribution on the ice and I’m sure off the ice because these guys just click. You cant say enough about team chemistry and you would be hard pressed to find any better around the league.

Submitted by HabsFreak


Team scoring is a huge factor, they went from middle of the pack last season to be at or near the top of the league this season. 5 on 5 goal scoring has gone from 26th last season to 8th this season. Wow!

Submitted by B


#1 offense in the league. Lafleur must think that’s pretty impressive for a team with, count’ em, four 4th lines 😉

Submitted by HabsInBlood


What does a Habs fan on an off day do?
 Gets bored and starts looking at some meaningless stats.
With the playoffs just around the corner, I thought it would be a good exercise to break down Habs regular season games into 7 game segments, as if each segment were a playoffs series and see how we’d fare.
How many series we would have won / lost.
This is what we get.


8 series won and 4 series lost.
One might argue that, in a playoff series, 4 wins for either team will end that series.
So here’s a look at our season if we looked at it that way.


9 series won and 3 series lost, also leading the next series 2-0
I know all this means squat during the real playoffs, but it’s worth to note that, for any team to lift the cup, they’d need to win 4 consecutive series.
Looking at our season record, we have won 7 series in a row and leading the 8th.
That’s almost two Standley cups, but I’d settle with one for now 😉
Hope you all enjoy this outlook even though it means nothing.

Submitted by zamboni


Hey ZAMBO, I guess we don’t have to worry about jinxing our playoff chance with the Monte Carlo analysis…(JK) Anyway, I did a similar analysis a few weeks back that looked series data in rolling periods which breaking down games 4, 5, 6, and 7 games senarios looking at games throughout the year. This gives a larger expanded sub-set and look into our Habs consistancy.Probability of rolling-game Analysis:

In 4 rolling game series(74 observations): 0% elimination but only 2 times (or 3% chance) that we sweep a 4 game series.
In 5 rolling game series (73 observations): 9.6% chance for elimination 13.7% of winning in a 5 game series.
In 6 rolling game series (72 observations): 20.8% chance for elimination 36.1% of winning in a 6 game series.
In 7 rolling game series (71 observations): 36.6% chance for elimination 63.4% of winning in a 7 game series.

Submitted by countNY


Of course all of this could not have happened without the outstanding and exemplary leadership demonstrated by Mr. Bob Gainey since his arrival in Montreal. Through it all, he has not once wavered from his vision and has instilled a genuine and palpable sense of purpose and a disciplined focus on performance throughout the entire organization. Merci Monsieur Gainey for accepting the torch from the late Sam Pollock.

Submitted by Odie Cleghorn


Olivier Fortier, a Habs’ pick from last year, was chosen the best defensive player of the year in the Quebec Jr League for the 2007-08 season. The trophy is named after – Guy Carbonneau.

Submitted by 24 Cups


Three Hottest Eastern Division teams in the 2nd half
Pittsburgh 49
Washington 49
Montreal 48

Three Coldest
Atlanta 31
NYI 31
Ottawa 34

Submitted by ebk


Guillaume won’t be Latendressing this weekend?

Submitted by the real vinnydj


At this time of year, with all the stress of making the playoffs relieved, games become a series of little enjoyments. For me last night’s highlights included:

-Max Lapierre grinning at his teammates after he harrassed Chris Neil into a misconduct penalty

-Josh Gorges winning battle after battle on the boards and becoming the only Hab I now *expect* to come out with the puck consistently

-Carbo sporting the ugliest tie in modern history.

-Michael Ryder crushing someone, picking up where he left off in the Boston game.

-Grabovski, poetically, scoring off S.Kost’s nice feed while falling down in the crease

-Murray chewing faster and faster, and blinking repeatedly as he tried to prevent his head from exploding

-Carey Price making a glove save, whipping the puck out of the air with perfect nonchalance

-Kovalev steaming up the boards, pivoting and powering into the slot for a shot…as a friend said last night, really diggin’ himself

-The final score and that coveted "x" next to the team’s name in the standings

Submitted by J.T.


Toronto Elaffinated!

Submitted by Smart Dog


Any ideas on what the CBC will be broadcasting instead of Laff games until the end of the playoffs – reruns of The Red Green show, perhaps? Thank the hockey gods for RDS.

Submitted by secretdragonfly



Roses are red.

Leaf fan is blue.

41 years later.

Still no Cup for you!

Submitted by moeman



"Give the Habs a 5 minute standing ovation at the end of the last game of the season against the Leafs (winning OR losing)"

-Submitted by The Teacher



Nice read on Kovy by Kevin Greenstein of Inside Hockey

Submitted by nightmare_49


for those of you who forgot what you represent!

Submitted by Jdub1515


Ovechkin on Markov

Submitted by sidhu


If anyone read Boone’s "3, not 33" post Monday, on the debate over whether to retire Patrick Roy’s #33, then you might be interested in taking a look at this.

Two other bloggers, J.T. and T.C. Deneault also weigh in on it.

[Also check out Eyes on the Prize for a few good Leafs laugh]

Submitted by Robert L


It’s no longer about making the playoffs but rather about winning the Cup. I’m getting ready for a name change.

Submitted by 24 Cups



Don’t agree with Carbo’s lines? Calulated a crazy stat? Found a good link? Then post it to the discussion boards and check out Bench Talk every Friday for a weekly roundup of the best of your comments.

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