Ça sent la Coupe

The World Cup, that is.

Spain vs. Holland for the world’s most prestigious sports trophy.

A refreshingly MacLean-free CBC at 2 p.m.

And it should be a dandy. Join us here for live blogging this afternoon.

And to warm up (as though that were needed in Montreal’s weather), check out The Guardian and  The Onion

• Gazette sports editor Stu Cowan has questions about the Halak trade

• Such a cute couple! Mike Fisher marries Carrie Underwood

Top 10 remaining UFAs

• How Kovy II misread the market


  1. showey47 says:

    Wrong,i criticize because he’s a big mouthed idiot who has done nothing but slam the habs organization out of pure bitterness for the last 7 years. While having his lips continually planted on brian burkes nutsack. He slams every move montreal makes regardless if its a good one or not. He feels he could do a better job,yet can’t get a job doing it anywhere else in the league. As the janitor, perhaps its just about being happy and there is nothing mediocre about just being happy. For all we know he has already made his coin earlier on in his life and is now just content living a simple life out of a high paying but high pressure job.

  2. kempie says:

    That is pretty crazy.

  3. B says:

    No, my point was that people who get NHL GM jobs do so because of a certain level of inherent hockey knowledge (whether they were deserving of the job or not).

  4. Chorske says:

    He said that? Crikey.

  5. B says:

    uhm Halak did not have good stats that year

    Halak lead the AHL in GAA and was 2nd in save% that season. His strong play got him called up to the Canadiens (where he had 2 shutouts in 16 games played for the Habs) ahead of Yan Danis (who started the season as the Dog’s #1 goalie and actually led the Dogs goalies by far in games played that season with 44). Price played 2 games at the end of that AHL regular season (after his WHL team Tri-City was knocked out in the first round). Price did play very well in those 2 regular season AHL games and then had an incredible playoff run for the Dogs while Halak was sent away to play for the Slovaks in the World’s (the Habs did not make the playoffs that season).

  6. Keith says:

    Ha,ha! Very good one Joey! You had me going there…

  7. Bill J says:

    Just so you know, in hindsight yes I agree – Management should not have put so much pressure on Price.

    They also should have kept Huet around for a few more seasons to properly mentor Price.

    But Huet wanted Big $$$ and got it, now look at him…

    I only took exception to “Halak has outplayed Price since they both got here”


  8. Caper says:

    You are right however…Price won the World Jr amd AHL Championship and perhaps management did jump the gun when Huet was traded.A full season as back-up that year or right back in Hamilton for a full year could have been the best thing.  This is where they dropped the ball. I’m hoping Price’s experience since February as Halak’s back-up woke him up. Other than that meltdown against Washington in the playoffs he at least seemed to accept his role and was supportive of his team mates and in particular, Halak. I’ll be interested to see if anything comes out of Halak about his relationship with Price now that he is gone. Or maybe even one of the other players who isn’t coming back.

  9. ooder says:

    game 2 against washington was a barn burner for sure.

    the whole team jsut stopped skating and washington was allowed to get away with murder.

    can’t really blame halak when the ref refuses to blow the wshitle and ovechkin just throws halak into the net with the puck.


    88 is the new 23

  10. Caper says:

    Well said. I will state that I am a Price guy however I came around to Halak before the playoffs. I was surprised as anyone when we traded Halak. Halak was superior to Price as you state however I still believe Price will succeed if he wants to.

  11. ooder says:

    wow dude hamilton was amazing that year.

    i am not taking anything away from carey… that’s what i want the posters to understand.

    once again Price dethorned huet but why?

    Because he was better or because this was a political decision to save some jobs.

    And you can’t play half a season and be considered a great goalie.

    my point is that Halak should have been the first one on the scene due to his age and skill.

    at 19 you can’t expect a goalie to play an entire season and it was a mistake by the habs managment


    88 is the new 23

  12. andrewberkshire says:

    I think the Washington series was a different monster because Montreal was clearly outscoring Washington in the first 2 games, and Halak blew the second game almost on his own, and let in a total of 8 goals in under 3 periods of hockey between game 2 and 3. As bad as everyone likes to pretend Price was against Boston, he never let in near the goals Halak did over that period.

  13. andrewberkshire says:

    Your point is based on the assumption that NHL GM’s are always deserving of their jobs, which is completely untrue of every profession. Half of the employed executives in the world if not more, got there by no skill of their own, but who they knew, and how many people they’ve stabbed in the back getting there.

  14. TripleX says:

    Yes, I was out of line.  No disrespect intended to the dudes who have a thankless job.  Trust me I have seen what school washrooms can look like.


    “There is no way Alex Auld was going to be on this team this year, unless he flew to France during the summer and bathed in the holy waters at Lourdes.” BRIAN BURKE

  15. SeriousFan09 says:

    The most-watched Hockey clip on YouTube ever would be a puck to Mcguire’s face when he was between the benchs.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  16. ooder says:

    hey andrew, don’t worry I know you never mean any disrespect.

    unfortunately we and a few others are a dying breed of respectful posters lol

    in the 08-09 season i found that Price was good at the beginning of the year but the team had to rely on halak down the stretch.

    i can understand it must be super difficult for a 21 year old to play a full season and the playoffs, I just thought by the end of the season halak was the more consistent one and deserved at least one game.

    Against Washington Price did get to start game 3, while Halak didn’t even get one


    88 is the new 23

  17. B says:

    I don’t know about being smarter, but it is quite possible that a very bad NHL GM might still know a bit more about hockey than most HIO posters. I still think that folks here have valid opinions and certainly many know a great deal about hockey, but I doubt that is the same as being at an NHL level of experience.

    I remember watching Brad Marsh who stood out as about the slowest skater in the NHL. I heard some guys who play what they consider a fast level of beer league hockey comment how Marsh just blew past everyone there when he skated with them once (after he retired). It is all relative I guess.

  18. Chuck says:

    Way to insult all of the janitors that read HI/O, XXX.


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  19. Bill J says:

    Whoa there slow down ooder.

    “… when clearly Halak was superior to him when they both came on the scene.”

    Uhm WHAT ?

    Price came in to a team that was the far underdog to win the Calder Cup, a team that up to that point had Halak as the #1 (uhm Halak did not have good stats that year) – What Price did does not have to be repeated.

    Price was Halak’s superior as HE was the one to dethrone Huet, not Halak.

    Price was Halak’s superior, and many OTHER goalies superior in the first half of the centennial season, until he injured himself.

    Since then… ? Yes, Halak had been Price’s superior, and in turn Halak had all the support into the playoffs.

  20. andrewberkshire says:

    In your opinion.

  21. andrewberkshire says:

    I want to see that, honestly. I’ll pay!

  22. andrewberkshire says:

    Mikhail, you know I respect you a ton, but let’s not make things up. It’s a popular mistruth that Halak singlehandedly got Montreal in the playoffs in 08-09, when Price has more wins throughout the year, and actually won the games that got us close and into the playoffs that year, not Halak. If not for Halak in February would we have made the playoffs? No. However if not for Price at the beginning of the year giving the team Vezina calibre goaltending on a nightly basis, we would have been in lottery pick range by February when Halak started to actually play well. 

    Price was kept in net against Boston because it was the team letting him down and not the other way around. Just like with Halak against Philadelphia this year.

  23. TripleX says:

    You are critical of Pierre because he has ambition?

    The hypothetical janitor might very well be content but he does himself and society a disservice by not maximizing his talents.

    I do not respect someone who is happy with mediocrity.  People like da Vinci, Einstein and Hawkins have used their enormous intellect to attempt to answer questions of the Universe and through this help mankind.  That is ambition and a life with purpose worthy of respect.


    “There is no way Alex Auld was going to be on this team this year, unless he flew to France during the summer and bathed in the holy waters at Lourdes.” BRIAN BURKE

  24. SeriousFan09 says:

    Tie a rope to Lemieux, have him drag Mcguire around as dead weight on the ice and he’d still dominate.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  25. ooder says:

    he let them rub his head for good luck


    88 is the new 23

  26. ooder says:

    don’t get me wrong.. i never said habs management is dumb.

    however, politics and backing up your decisions do play a part in the choices the managemnet takes.

    imagine if Gainey said to Gillet (the owner at the time):”ya we had the 5th overall pick but the guy we chose isn’t really good”

    doesn’t sound very good and a lot of jobs would have been on the line.

    And i never said get rid of Price.. I just think they brought him up to early when clearly Halak was superior to him when they both came on the scene


    88 is the new 23

  27. andrewberkshire says:

    And he’s also the reason Lemieux, Jagr and Francis were so good.

  28. TripleX says:

    Case in point is the Montreal Canadiens franchise. 

    The “peter principle” is proudly held high in the executive offices of the Habs.


    “There is no way Alex Auld was going to be on this team this year, unless he flew to France during the summer and bathed in the holy waters at Lourdes.” BRIAN BURKE

  29. Chuck says:




    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  30. SeriousFan09 says:

    Al Montoya anyone?

    With Sather in charge, that team couldn’t pick a franchise player with the 1st overall.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  31. Caper says:

    I have a problem with what you are saying. Dispite what people think, Habs management is not dumb. If you have a guy like Halak in your hand, it makes sense to trade Price since your a– is now covered. Trading Price gives you the luxury of “fixing” the mistake when he was drafted. They and many others with more hockey knowledge than us, believe Price is worth keeping. You want want a mistake? Doug Wickenheiser rest his soul over the star French Canadien Denis Savard. We still one two Cups without Denis even though he was on the ’93 team and we gave up Chelios to get him. These moves make Halak’s trade look like a blip.

  32. ed lopaz says:

    I agree – this is all about poor management from A to Z.

    And you can still be a GREAT HABS fan, AND question Habs

    management. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with

    questioning the people who make the decisions – like we do

    with the government, for example – its what makes being a


  33. SeriousFan09 says:

    Mcguire and the early 90s Penguins, you’d swear it was him alone behind the bench the way he describes it, rather than a couple HOF coachs.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  34. andrewberkshire says:

    Mike Milbury WAS a GM in the NHL, does that make him smarter than all the posters on this website. See where that logic falls apart? Like any job in the world, I doubt the best candidates always get the job in the NHL.

  35. andrewberkshire says:

    He also rubs people the wrong way with his glory hogging and rewriting of history to make himself look good. If you listen to him talk you’d think he was the head coach of the Penguins when the won the cup in 91 and 92.

  36. showey47 says:

    If the smartest man in north america is a janitor in a gym,its because he wants to be a janitor and is happy with his job and you know what,i respect that. Maguire has applied for 4 or 5 g.m. postings in the last 2 years and can’t get one. Which tells a different story all together.

  37. B says:

    I don’t think we share the same view on what “support it” means and I would never suggest another Canadiens fan “leave it”, even if I don’t agree with their opinion(s). Different strokes I guess.

  38. The Cat says:

    My guess is he knows a lot about hockey but he probably rubs people the wrong way with his personality.

  39. ed lopaz says:

    of course, I respect your point of view, and I agree that both Eller and Schultz look like they could help the Habs.

    the point is, I think, that they are NOT YET established top 6 forwards, and only time will tell how they will develop.

    I would have bet anyone last year that Paccioretty was going to become a top 6 forward – now I’m not sure.

    I said at the time of the trade, had we received Backes or Oshie, the deal would have been viewed as LESS RISKY.

    we’ll see what happens.

  40. The Cat says:

    Only cause the rangers werent stupid enough to waste a 1st round pick on a goalie…Yes its good for him, I guess Im the only that sees the blatant favouritism the organization has as unsightly.

  41. gloveside says:

    I know it’s been posted before but for the last time I’d like to show how “great” this management team has been at the draft table…let’s just look at our top 3 picks each year since 2000.

    2000 – Hainsey, Marcel Hossa, Josef Balej

    2001 – Komisarek, Perezhogin, Duncan Milroy

    2002 – Higgins, Linhart, Ferland

    2003 – AK, Lapierre, Corey Locke [lets not bring up Carter, Richards, Getzlaf, Perry, Brown and Seabrook in what may have been the deepest draft in 30 years]

    2004 – Chipchura, Yemelin, Wyman

    2005 – Price, Aubin, D’Agostini

    2006 – Fischer, Maxwell, Mathieu Carle, Ryan white

    2007 – Paciretty, Weber, Stejskal

    2008 – [Tanguay], Kristo, Quailer, Missiaen

    2009 – Lablanc, Nattien, Bennett


    Pretty embarrassing. My point is that every team in the league [except maybe the Leafs]. Have acquired at least one and sometimes several, top flight players during that time that continue to contribute in a big way to their franchises – many of them have become the face of the franchise. Yes the draft is a crap shoot but why are we really the only team not to acquire at least one “franchise-type” player in a decade? Bad luck?

  42. B says:

    I am not a McGuire fan, but at least he has been interviewed for NHL GM positions. I wonder how many of the posters in this forum have ever been interviewed for a GM (or any other) position in the NHL?

  43. showey47 says:

    I don’t think it has anything to do about draft position. First of all,when was the last time the rangers had anyone to challenge lundqvist for his job? The same people who say its about carey being the chosen one seem to forget gainey had him traded to tampa for vinny at last summers draft before bettman came in and killed the deal because of 2 owners who couldn’t agree on anything. If carey and jaro had swapped stats this season hence projected salaries next season,it could very well be carey who would have been moved to st.louis or elsewhere. One has to wonder why there were only 4 teams interested in halak and why nobody would offer a proven young,cap friendly top 6 roster player or a first round pick for him. Regardless of what maguire says any idiot posing as a g.m. in the nhl knew one of the habs goalies would be available this summer. It has been proven over and over again,goalies hold little value in the trade market. Mainly because the failures outnumber the successes after handing out the big contracts to them. 

  44. ooder says:

    sorry Andrew but I gotta agree with the Cat.

    in no way was Halak treated fairly, and it was all about managmenet covering their asses with their #5 canadian pick.

    yes he was the starting goalie from december but he had to twist managements arm for it, leaving them absolutely no choice.

    but the year before where he single hadnidly got us into the playoffs he didn’t even get a single start, there were plenty of favouritism Carey’s way

    btw i am not laying this at Price’s feet… only at managements


    88 is the new 23

  45. G-Man says:

    More swallow the kool-aid or you’re not allowed to be a fan. Pffffftttt!

  46. andrewberkshire says:

    Since when did the Rangers have another goalie equal to Lundqvist’s talent? That’s an irrelevant comparison. Halak is a better player because of how the Canadiens handled him, and now he’s on a team that can challenge for a cup in a few short years. His career looks like it’s on an excellent trajectory so he’s clearly not complaining, why are you?

  47. andrewberkshire says:

    So you’re saying Maguire is being kept out by an old boys club? No. He wouldn’t even get interviewed if that was the case. The problem is that he has ZERO qualifications, he’s a liar, and he’ll backstab anyone to get his own reputation to look better. 

  48. Chris B. says:

    What do I care what other people in far off places think about what is the most prestigious trophy? Here in Montreal, in Quebec and in Canada it is the Stanley Cup. Nothing else. In the United States it may be a few different ones, but it is not the world cup of soccer.



  49. andrewberkshire says:

    Bob McKenzie brought up Kopitar and Staal, Maguire didn’t. My favourite part of Maguire’s rant when Price was picked was when he said the 7th ranked Price, who’s First Nations, as a pick was “right off the reservation”. Maguire is a scumbag.

  50. The Cat says:

    Sometimes its not what you know, but who likes you and who are your friends. The man with the highest IQ in North America as they showed on the Discovery Channel is a janitor in a gym. By your logic, youd say he was a stupid man.

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Ca sent la coupe?

Props to Gainey – Stubbs

Underdogs evoke 1971 – Red Fisher

Birthday boy celebrates in style – Arpon Basu

Kudos for Canadiens – Jim Kelley

Savouring success, briefly – Sean Gordon

Bergeron or Brière? – François Gagnon

A new spring – Réjean Tremblay

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Ça sent la coupe!

Scott Gomez, Jaroslav Spacek, Hal Gill and Mike Cammalleri.

Pick out a good spot on the parade route.

And Mike Komisarek is a Leaf.

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