Bench Talk

Just in case you don’t have the time to read all of the great comments that are posted on Inside/Out, we are starting up a weekly shout-out recognizing some of the best.

The comments may differ by being witty, insightful or silly; and they may cover the entire spectrum of the Habs’ universe, but all of them represent what it means to be a fan of the Montreal Canadiens. 

Do you have a trade idea that’ll balance out the team? Find a good link to a Habs’ story? Calculated a crazy stat?  Then post it to the discussion boards and check out Bench Talk every Friday for a weekly round-up of the best of your comments.


Some of the posts have been edited for length.


Submitted by habitual on Wed,02/06/2008 – 19:19.

Here are some observations that come from the difference in watching live vs. televised games: Kovalev is even better live. What I hadn’t been able to see well on TV was his ability to control the pace of the game. Ifhe wants it to speed it up, he can. But when he wants to hold onto the puck outside the blue line to give Pleks and Andre time to catch up, he finds a holding pattern and then off they go. And you really notice how little room there often is to work with on the ice, making his ability to find the open man and make those great passes truly impressive.

The people in Montreal are wonderfully warm and welcoming. Everyone accommodated my sad attempts at speaking French, and graciously switched to English the moment I said ‘bonjour.” And the fans at the Bell Centre LOVE hockey. They gave standing ovations for a good 20 second penalty kill shift! The atmosphere is fabulous and if you haven’t seen a game in person you must!


Submitted by Chuck on Wed, 02/06/2008 -18:22.

I swear that Carbonneau tweaks his lines just to give us something to talk about on the off days. :)


Submitted by Alex Rio on Wed,02/06/2008 – 12:15.

We need more Kostitsency.


Submitted by idle on Wed, 02/06/2008 -11:22.

There is always room for improvement, and no Habs fan is going to say ‘hey don’t go out and get some better players for us’. But if all we do is complain about every mistake the team makes then when do we have time to be happy and enjoy the team?


Submitted by HabsFreak on Tue,02/05/2008 – 14:54.

It’s not what the club can do for you, it’s what you can do for the club.


Submitted by Sulemaan on Sun,02/03/2008 – 19:46.

Let’s move on to the next one. A loss like this is good. It forces our team to swallow a bitter pill and learn from it. Time to move on.


Submitted by idle on Mon, 02/04/2008 -09:12.

As much as it hurts, I think you have to give the Rangers respect for the way they turned this game around. They pressured the Habs for the majority of the second and third periods and did what Montreal should have done after the first which is to not let their opponents get any kind of sustained momentum.


Submitted by Ian G Cobb on Thu,02/07/2008 – 08:49.

O.K. here goes my weekly report on the three most important stats in determining where we stack up in a 30 team league:

GA—150 We are in 16th place, one better than 17thplace a week ago.Total points— 67 4th place, we were in 7thplace a week ago. GF—173 We are in 3rd place, we were in 5thplace a week ago. We have improved every week for over two months.


Submitted by 24 Cups on Mon, 02/04/2008- 22:49.

We are now up to 135 posts and over 900 reads. And all of this because the Canadiens are switching their backup goaltenders. I now fully realize what hockey madness is all about.


Most Controversial Trade Idea:

Submitted by kenny_galloway onMon, 02/04/2008 – 23:58.

To Toronto:
 McDonagh + Emelin; To Montreal:
 Raycroft +Gill


Best Links:

On why Sean Avery doesn’t like Mike Komisarek:

Submitted by zamboni on Mon, 02/04/2008- 08:12.

Maybe this has something to do with it :)


Submitted by krob1000 on Mon,02/04/2008 – 15:39.

Here is an interesting resource on past trade deadlines.There is a link to even show draft picks that turn out to be stars and deals that championship teams have made.


Submitted by HAB-PROFESSOR on Wed,02/06/2008 – 12:32.

on HOSSA and the Habs…


Submitted by coutNY on Tue, 02/05/2008- 08:38.

For fact-rattling-sake Laffsfacing a No. 2 goalie around 40% of their games this season.


Submitted by Ed on Wed, 02/06/2008 -18:09.

The best penalty killers for GA per 60 minutes short handed are: 
Plekanec and Kovalev – 4.3 
Koivu and Higgins – 6.6 
Begin and Dandenault- 7.7
 Chipchura and Kostopoulos – 8.8
 Begin and Smolinski – 11.5. Plekanec and Kovalev are good no matter where they play. Also, this shows that our bestPK’ers are our offensive minded players. I was a bit surprised when I saw this.


Submitted by coutNY on Wed, 02/06/2008- 15:29.

Click here…for a The Hockey News are article featuring Bob’s take on Komisarek!




  1. Les-Habitants says:

    Why did Carbo change the d-pairings…although, I don’t think it would have made a difference.

  2. likehoy says:

    nicely done…sad that none of my posts made it :(

  3. teamplayer says:

    i also feel sad. maybe it because i come on here after i am done work, 5hrs after the game is finished and nobody reads my comments? or maybe i just dont have any of the above qualities.

    i guess i will just search for cool links then
    p.s. i dont like elisha cuthberts hair like that… too boyish!

  4. Ed says:

    So Chris, now you want us to be witty, insightful or silly. The silly part is no problem. I think this is a good idea, because most of us don’t have time to read all posts. However, it’s going to create a lot of work for you, as I am sure there are thousands of comments a week. What amazes me is the knowledge of the game itself that some posters have. I played hockey for years, but I could never analyze it like some people do.

  5. likehoy says:

    i just checked out the short handed goals per minute link…and i realized how irrelevant of a stat that is. The shorthanded minutes doesn’t describe who was on the ice for the other team, which makes a huge difference. if Higgins and Koivu were on the ice trying to contain jagr and lets in a goal..that’s respectable. Carbo may have matched penalty killers with power play units and kovy and plekanec could be against the second wave…if there was a stat on how often they spent time on the ice against the opposing teams top players and how they faired…i’d like to see that.

  6. zamboni says:

    Good point,
    But I’m hoping that being a Habs fan, you’ve been watching the games.
    Not only Kovy and Pleky are defending well, they’ve been scoring shorthanded goals.

    You’re point is still valid though, as the stat by itself is misleading.
    here’s a link that expands on that point and gives a better indication of a person’s +/-.
    Sadly it hasn’t been updated lately

  7. CDK says:

    It’s not irrelevant because we can assume that each pair of penalty killers will, over the course of a season, face the top power play units (from all opposing teams) a similar number of times. Your criticism assumes that i) Carbo chooses his penalty killers based on a negative relationship between the offensive production of his penalty killers and the opponent’s power play unit (i.e. opponent’s top unit faces Montreal’s least offensive unit) and ii) Carbo has perfect control over line-matching in each PK. Both assumptions are somewhat weak.

    That offensively-gifted players are excellent penalty killers isn’t unusual given that Gretzky, Orr and Lemieux were used often to kill penalties (and score a ton of shorties).

  8. Moey says:


    I’m hoping for a weekly worst of the worst installment, it will give some of us little people a chance too. :)

  9. likehoy says:

    nice find…but looks like stats from last year.

    i’m glad they’re scoring shorthanded goals..but it seems like their role on the PK is to scare the opposing team into making mistakes…like if the opposing makes a mistake…it’ll cost they’ll play more tentative…but kovalev’s work ethic is left to be desired on the PK…but he’s smart so it makes up for it….for the most part.

    (why was he 300 feet away from the play last night?? leaving his team down 2 men in his own zone? i’m glad he scored…but he would look stupid if they didn’t clear the puck and the opposing team scored).

  10. zamboni says:

    I agree, his first rush, was great, we got possession and we spend a good time on the opposition side, then everybody thought they could jump in , and when he got possession again, he was kind of cornered and should have just skated to our zone and killed time instead of trying to make a perfect pass.
    And of course it was a turnaround that almost resulted a goal against us, and we all know what happened following that, he took off for breakaway and scored.
    Like you said, if the opposition plays tentative, that works, I would also add that if his gambles work more often than they fail, it’s a good trade-off as well, so far it’s been great, I think he’s too smart and seasoned for it to be a handicap.

    “The best defense is a good offense”.

  11. 24 Cups says:

    Chris – Make sure you have lots of quotes that centre around Josh Gorges or Mike Boone will be all over you:-)

    The Original 24 Cups

  12. HotHabs says:

    I’d like to know who decides which quotes make it? Is this your baby or is there a vote or a top 10 given by the HIO staff?

    Interesting, nevertheless. Now everyone’s gonna be striving to make the “best post” list!

    enjoying the high’s of being a Habs fan

  13. Les-Habitants says:

    Man o man….

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