Canadiens prepare for weekend battles against Senators for top spot in the Atlantic

Emelin

There were a couple of missing players Thursday as the Canadiens ramped up their preparation for back-to-back games against the Ottawa Senators this weekend. 

First place in the Atlantic Division is on the line when the teams clash Saturday in Ottawa (7 p.m., Sportsnet, TVA Sports, TSN-690 Radio) and at back at the Bell Centre  Sunday. Montreal is one point ahead of Ottawa, but the Senators held two games in hand going into their home game against the Chicago Blackhawks Thursday night.

One big question going into the weekend is the stats of defenceman Alexei Emelin, who is minus-6 in his last three games. There was no clue to his immediate future Thursday because he missed practice with the flu. Emelin was dropped down to the third pair in Tuesday’s loss to Chicago with Brandon Davidson moving up to play with Jeff Petry.

Also absent with the flu was Alex Radulov, who has seen his contract status with the Canadiens become a recent focus of attention. He’s on a one-year deal and will be an unrestricted free agent on July 1. The latest report is that he’s seeking an eight-year commitment from the Canadiens, which seems a tad long for a 30-year-old.

Brendan Gallagher skipped practice for a therapy day while Brian Flynn and Nikita Nesterov are injured.

Practice time is sparse because there is little time between games, but Claude Julien took advantage of a mini-break to work on special teams and physical battles around the net. That figures to be important in the upcoming games against Ottawa — the teams also meet next weekend — because the Senators play a physical style and, until the Canadiens added players like Steve Ott, Dwight King and Andreas Martinsen, Ottawa enjoyed a significant edge in size.

Ott and Martinsen were joined in practice by Michael McCarron, but it remains to be seen whether they will play together Saturday because Julien will be juggling his lines if Radulov and Gallagher are healthy.

The Canadiens and Senators will hold a joint news conference in Ottawa Friday to announce an outdoor games to be held in Ottawa next season.  

148 Comments

  1. Troutcp says:

    On the story of Bobby Rousseau’s 5 goals, what I remember is the one he scored on a slap shot that was initially stopped by the hapless Roger Crozier but which propelled him into the net. At least that’s what I think I remember after all these years….

  2. I_Am_Second says:

    I hear many posts about how Price has won nothing yet, pertaining to a Cup! Correct, he has not won a Cup yet. But, look the teams he played for. He won Gold’s & a World Cup. Why? Because he had a great team in front of him, that’s why. No Goalie, no matter how great he may be can’t win a Cup with out a good to very good team in front of him.

    This “Carey Price has won nothing yet” is getting very old!

    “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord”

    • Cal says:

      “This “Carey Price has won nothing yet” is getting very old!”
      Yeah, he’s been in the league a long time and hasn’t come close. I’m losing patience, too. 😀

    • Mister Wrong says:

      I_Am_Second, you are skilled in the use of facts, common sense, and logic.

      Unfortunately, these tools are ineffective against basic stupidity, which is the weapon of choice for the “Price isn’t a winner” crowd.

      #FireBergevin

    • habs-hampton says:

      I hear ya. Using that logic, the following guys are also “losers”:
      Marcel Dionne, Brad Park, Jean Ratelle, Dan Marino, Ted Williams, Ernie Banks, and on and on and on.

      Chris Dingman won cups with 2 different teams (Tampa and Colorado). Where does that put him on the list?

      30 teams. The pure, statistical odds of winning it all are once every 30 years! (soon to be 31 years).

      You can’t measure a career or talent on Championships alone.

  3. Strabo says:

    @SteverenO
    Interesting stats about NB. I don’t know why coaches get entrenched with an idea and can’t let it go. Sometimes the stats are correct even if they don’t pass the “eye test”.
    Do the Habs have a analytics person working for them? I know they fired the last person, but I never heard if he was replaced.

    “Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former.” Albert Einstein

  4. rhino514 says:

    To me Gallagher is such an important cog in the wheel on this team.
    If you look at the tough games the tem has been able to pull out against decent teams, Nashville, Edmonton, Rangers and may others, it was in large part due to secondary scoring.
    Because of Radulov the team has been able to compensate for Gallagher´s and Plekanec´s tough offensive seasons. But when Gallagher is at his best any line he is one becomes a threat to score. He is a player who last season was either scoring or setting up a goal in almost every game. His shots are not going in and we all fear this may because of his hand injuries but he is back to creating something on almost every shift. If he can be a semblance of himself the rest of they way out, the habs will be able to score from at least 2 lines and they have to be able to do this in order to beat the top teams.
    I´d like to see Plekanec pick it up for one last run but that would be dreaming in technicolour I suppose.

  5. on2ndthought says:

    Marchand and Gallagher have interesting similarities in their career arcs.

    If anything Gally is ahead of the LBH, as he is 4 years younger. The thing to watch is if the injuries to his hands are a speed bump or a road block; only time will tell.

    • Cal says:

      Two breaks in 2 seasons. Definitely a road block. He still does many other things well enough to be top 9. These injuries make him a 20 goal scorer.
      Marchand, despite being a slew footing rat, has a lot of skill. He’s in his prime and looks very much like a 40 goal man.

  6. habs001 says:

    Plecks 0 goals in his last 18 games….Eller with the Caps back to what he is ..a 30 point player that goes on a little streak and fools some posters all the time…0 goals in 16 games now…

    • G4be says:

      I always see Eller as Cerrano from the movie Major League, but instead of praying to Joboo for him to score a homerun, Eller goes to psychologist to play hockey and score goals.

      Win is a win, but I hope we win.

  7. Danno says:

    Five Canadian teams currently holding playoff spots.

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  8. SteverenO says:

    The Beaulieu Effect: part 3

    Gallagher & Pacioretty on the ice together(5 on 5 Hockey):
    273 minutes the team has scored 10 goals and allowed 11 GA
    AVG= 27 mins per GF & 25 mins per GA

    Gallagher/Pacioretty AND Beaulieu:
    75 minutes – the team has scored 5 goals and allowed 3GA
    AVG= 15 Mins per GF and 25 mins per GA

    Pacioretty & Gallagher on the ice WITHOUT Beaulieu:
    199 minutes- the team has scored 5 goals and allowed 8 GA
    AVG = 40 mins per GF & 25 mins per GA

    So in your opinion; should Beaulieu be getting MORE ice time or LESS ice time?

    How do you think Gallagher + Pacioretty would answer that question?

    regards,
    Steve O.

    **** research from http://www.puckalytics.com

    • bustthebusters says:

      Thank you Steve O. for articulating my gut feel on N8 with critical stats. Have always felt that he should be paired with Weber, given more ice time, and allowed to make mistakes from time to time. Bottom line he makes this squad better the more he plays. Send the info CJ !!

  9. SteverenO says:

    The Beaulieu Effect: part 2

    With Gallagher on the ice (5 on 5 Hockey):
    640 minutes the team has scored 23 goals and allowed 20 GA
    AVG= 28 mins per GF & 32 mins per GA

    With Gallagher on the ice together WITH Beaulieu:
    181 minutes – the team has scored 10 goals and allowed 6 GA
    AVG= 18 Mins per GF and 30 mins per GA

    With Gallagher on the ice WITHOUT Beaulieu:
    459 minutes- the team has scored 13 goals and allowed 14 goals
    AVG = 35 mins per GF & 32 mins per GA

    So in your opinion; should Beaulieu be getting MORE ice time or LESS ice time?

    How do you think Gallagher would answer that question?

    regards,
    Steve O.

    **** research from http://www.puckalytics.com

    regards,

    Steve O.

  10. Danno says:

    People in Ottawa will get a chance to boo Buttman tomorrow

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  11. SteverenO says:

    The Beaulieu Effect:

    With Pacioretty on the ice at 5 on 5 Hockey:
    1,015 minutes the team has scored 46 goals and allowed 37 GA
    AVG= 22 mins per GF & 27.5 mins per GA

    With Pacioretty on the ice together WITH Beaulieu:
    303 minutes – the team has scored 20 goals and allowed 11 GA
    AVG= 15 Mins per GF and 27.5 mins per GA

    With Pacioretty on the ice WITHOUT Beaulieu:
    711 minutes- the team has scored 26 goals and allowed 26 goals
    AVG = 27 mins per GF & 27 mins per GA

    So in your opinion should Beaulieu be getting MORE ice time or LESS ice time?

    regards,

    Steve O.

    **** research from http://www.puckalytics.com ****

  12. SteverenO says:

    Nobody should be surprised (not even Julien) that the pairing of Petry and Emelin was not successful. These guys are terrible together. They were terrible last season when playing together. They were terrible this season when playing together ,,,,,so much so that even Therrien finally realised that playing Petry and Emelin was a mistake ( a couple of months after I pointed it out) and stopped playing them together. In comes Julien and he puts them back together and, lo and behold, the same awful results.

    What is bothering me is why EVERYONE is so down on Beaulieu.
    here are some facts:

    Weber and Markov have played together for 188 minutes of even strength hockey. During that time the team has scored 6 goals while allowing 7- The team has averaged one GF eevry 31 minutes and 1 GA every 27 minutes

    Early in the season Beaulieu played with Weber. For some reason it didnt last that long. Therrien decided that Beaulieu was not deserving of first pairing minutes. Interesting is that Weber and Beaulieu played played together for 174 minutes of even strength hockey. During that time the team had scored 9 goals while allowing only 2 – The team averaged one GF every 19 minutes and 1 GA every 87 minutes

    Despite these FACTS no one is even considering the possibility that Beaulieu and Weber be re-united. If I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard it said that the HABs have no “good” option available to play with Weber, I’d be very rich.

    What is it about Beaulieu that everyone dislikes?

    Not only have the Habs done better with Beaulieu/Weber versus Markov/Weber, they have also done MUCH better with Markov /Petry versus Beaulieu/Petry :

    Markov -Petry: 532 Minutes ES TOI – 27 GF and 19 GA
    AVG= 19.7 Mins per GF & 28 Mins per GA

    Beaulieu-Petry: 356 Minutes ES TOI – 17 GF and 21 GA
    AVG= 21 Mins per GF & 17 Mins per GA

    Even though Beaulieu- Weber has been more effective than Markov/Weber & Markov/Petry has been more effective than Beaulieu/Petry , we will probably never see our top 4 defensemen paired the “right” way,

    Beaulieu-Weber
    Markov-Petry

    The data shows, CONCLUSIVELY, that any other combination of top 4 will NOT bring the optimal results.

    regards,

    Steve O.

  13. HUDSONHAB says:

    Rangers are a good match up first round then Bruins/Sens leftovers next. Don’t mind that.

  14. johnnylarue says:

    This weekend? Yuge.

    BUTT:

    At the risk of sparking a pages-long controversy, I wouldn’t mind if Ottawa took the division. I feel like the Habs are better cast as underdogs than alpha dogs. And we could get a more favourable matchup that way, too.

    Speaking of which, I’m going to write a letter to Gary and tell him to fix it so we play the Leafs in Round 1. Or whenever. I think that series could be dynamite from a fan’s perspective. While I’m at it, I think a Chicago-Montreal SCF could blow minds as well. (Gary, if you’re reading this–if I could just get you to go ahead and get on that, that’d be great.)

    Note: The words sparking, BUTT, dynamite, and blow were chosen in tribute to the flu bug that is currently afflicting our One True Team.

  15. Habitant in Surrey says:

    I have not had a cold in years that has floored Me more than a couple hours. A Niocitrin or a Tylenol heavy duty cold pill and it’s gone in a couple hours.

    But this past week, coincidental with the Habs, I had a multi-day struggle with flu, sore throat, chills, runny nose. VERY rare this happens to Me.

    My Kids, friends, neighbors, even My dentist and his staff.

    Seems the Team picked up their symptoms after arriving in Vancouver.

    Could lingering effects of flu be reason Emelin’s head seems up His rear since playing in Vancouver ?

  16. Habitant in Surrey says:

    Relieved I am not the GM of the Montreal Canadiens.

    Wrestling whether I pay through the shnozz $ 10 million+ for I don’t know how many years for a God to Habs Fans goaltender who has won the Team, itself, nothing (yet).

    Or the pressure from Fans to sign Radulov to 20 year contract at $ 7.5 to $ 8 million. All on the result of ONE season of 15 goals.

    2 huge gambles.

    Personally, I can see Price at $ 8.5 million for 6 years. Radulov $ 6.5 to $ 7 for 4 years, but beyond that I would not go if I want room to fix the many many holes We have as a Team.

    But, then again, I’m ‘retired’. And, I promise not to influence Marc’s decision-making.

    ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    ‘MAKE OUR HABS GREAT AGAIN !!!’

  17. Habitant in Surrey says:

    Max, in yesterday’s snowstorm helping a stranger’s SUV stuck in the snow.

    https://ca.sports.yahoo.com/news/pacioretty-comes-to-rescue-of-snow-stranded-montreal-resident-184906797.html

    • Habitant in Surrey says:

      I was sitting at My Kids dentist Tuesday watching CBC news including news of the deluge of snow on the East Coast.

      Some of the scenes in Montreal of buses becoming immobile, cars deserted mid road, people blown over in the wind –surprisingly sprung wistful reminisces of Montreal to Me.

      I tell My present Kids to this day My ‘Montreal snow stories’, whenever there is the slightest snowfall out here in La La Land, and this winter We had more than the norm. So reflexive I have become that My Kids admonish Me before I even have a chance to begin, “Oh Dad ! Not again ! We’ve heard that story a million times !!! ”

      Especially My memory coming home up Ridgewood one evening after leaving the office of RCA Ltd., my rear engine car effortlessly passing all the other poor souls in mounds of snow, of just reaching the top crest at the top of the mountainside Ridgewood snaked up, only to reach My one last challenge before reaching My apartment building’s warm garage.

      The wind had blown a substantial snow barrier across the road. It was howling. The snow was so thick and whipping there was no visibility more than 10 feet in front of My fender. I was driving with speed, otherwise any loss of momentum meant no way to find traction from a slow or stopped position.

      I see this 6 foot mound of snow fast rising in front of Me through the whipping snow. Decision, should I stop here ? Abandon My car in front of the mound, and walk the relatively short distance home through the blizzard ?

      The Crash Crawley in Me decided to, of course, CRASH –through the snow. After all I had already made it through almost 10 miles of impossible blizzard conditions to have made it this far.

      WHOOOSSSHHH FLUMMMMPPP !!!

      So there I was in My dark car, covered in snow.

      I manage to push open My driver door, climb some snow, descend some more snow, and walk at an acute angle to My building, My dog, My now eldest daughter, and My baddaboom Wife.

      I languished in their collective warmth, and the fireplace’s, finally thinking maybe, just maybe, My car was left in the centre of the road, on a hill, in a blizzard, and this may be problematic.

      Reluctantly I reassemble every winter layer and warmest boots I can find, and with a huge shovel lumber back to find My car.

      Wendy was 4 then, and insisted she wanted to follow Me. She lives in New York City now, but We both laugh still to this day when We remember together finding My little red rear-engine roadster swaying on top of the snow mound.

      I had to dig a couple hours to bring it down to road level.

      Like I said, when I tell My present Kids the story, They tell Me “please Dad ! You’ve already told Us that story a million times !”

      Well, at least I can telephone long-distance to New York and a more understanding ear.

  18. Arnou Ruelle says:

    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/video/bettman-we-aren-t-paying-a-lot-of-attention-to-seattle%7E1080095

    I wonder how many hockey fans out there are really pissed off at Gary Bettman? Just by the look of his face and the way he talks in front of the media, he looks confident, but annoyed. His job as commissioner is tough. I wouldn’t be surprised if there could be some internal ppl. from BOG to the owners of the league plotting to replace him.

    Bettman’s tenure has many kinks: 3 lockouts/1 season gone, allowing hockey franchises with no winter to open such as the Arizona Coyotes and Vegas Golden Knights, Refusing to expand more hockey markets to Canada.

    • D Mex says:

      The NBA’s castoff ~ Buttman.
      IF ever a ” spokesperson ” for a significant business enterprise needed to work on his / her visual presentation, it’s this guy.
      By sliding that video over to the side, it was possible to count his head hammer one side of my monitor 1,035 times in the first 6 minutes of that presser … Does the manufacturer’s warranty even cover this ❓

      IF the name of the game is bobblehead’s bobblehead, then sure – he’s in a league of his own.
      But if the objective is to communicate a message without inducing nausea in the target audience, man oh man, does this guy have major work to do, or what ?
      https://youtu.be/7DHFOOK06fw?t=148
      Good thing his grandson went skating once, or I’d be tempted to think he knew as much about ” our game … “ as the average schmuck from Glendale City Council.

  19. Habitant in Surrey says:

    My first hockey-related read earlier today was The Hockey News.

    They featured 3 interesting columns.

    One on ‘Future Watch 2017: the NHL’s Top 10 rising prospects’ http://www.thehockeynews.com/news/article/future-watch-2017-the-nhl-s-top-10-rising-prospects

    The second; Future Watch 2017: the NHL’s Top 10 falling prospects’ http://www.thehockeynews.com/news/article/future-watch-2017-the-nhl-s-top-10-falling-prospects

    The third; ‘Does Marchant Really Have A Shot At The Hart Trophy ?’ http://www.thehockeynews.com/news/article/does-marchand-really-have-a-shot-at-the-hart-trophy

    If You are a Habs Fan, all are as equally depressing.

    The only Habs mentioned are among the ‘busts and falling’, i.e., McCarron, de la Rose and Fucale.

    Marchand ? Need I elucidate ?

  20. habs001 says:

    Leafs loaded with very young forwards have lost the same number of games in regulation as the Habs…. Not to mention their D payroll not even close to the Habs…

    • Bmon44 says:

      Leafs have had far fewer injuries, and have had an easier schedule overall up until now. They still have games against Washington, Pittsburgh, Chicago, and two against Columbus. I watch a lot of Leafs games because a lot of my friends are huge Leaf fans (sucks i know lol) and although the Leafs have the better forwards, Habs are definitely the better team (for now, good chance it’ll be different in a couple of years). If the leafs win, it’s because they outscore their holes on defence, and/or Andersen or McElhinney has a really good game.

  21. habs001 says:

    So two o/t games coming up?….If Habs played Arizona in the playoffs it still would be 2-1 type games..

  22. Clemenza says:

    Lord Jesus in heaven. I know it’s been a while.
    But could you please see that the Edmonton Oilers lay a 10 spot on the Boston Bruins? Thank you.

    Clemenza

  23. StevieM61 says:

    The Senaturds lose in regulation. Apparently those beers I sacrificed to the hockey gods did the trick.
    You are welcome.

    Bullet holes in my mirrors . . . .

  24. kalevine says:

    looks like last goal wins Boston vs Edmonchuck

  25. Gazza Strip says:

    The Habs should take a look at Phillipe Maillet. He scored three goals and added an assist tonight against Queens to lead UNB to a 5 – 1 win. He is the most dominant forward that the Varsity Reds have ever had on any of their teams. I get to see him play here in Fredericton and he is dangerous on every shift.
    I know very few Canadian University players get to the show but he just might have the right stuff.

  26. habs001 says:

    DD 4 points with Edmonton playing his 6th game…

    • Arnou Ruelle says:

      Honestly, I feel happy for Davy on his stint in Edmonton. He knows his heart is with the CH. But as a hockey player, DD will find success outside. If he does work well, he’ll be given another chance. Its true, David Desharnais is a battler and he has the same heart like Martin St. Louis.

      • D Mex says:

        I’d venture Desharnais’ heart is made of better stuff.
        There is nothing out there to suggest he has ever revolted, pouted or threatened to take his puck and go home as St-Louis did to Yzerman toward the end of his séjour in TB.

  27. HNS says:

    That’s how to beat the Sens.

  28. CharlieHodgeFan says:

    A moment of Panik, and a loss for Ottawa.

  29. kalevine says:

    I feel a bit sorry for Ottawa – 2 penalties for breaking Hawks’ sticks.

  30. PK says:

    Go Hawks Go!

    Hate the Kanata Senators.

  31. Blade (Apparently I am a "Polyanna") says:

    I love Rads…I really, really do. I was not sure about him when they signed him and I am glad to eat crow.

    But 8 years? No sir.

  32. kalevine says:

    neat, nhl.com is showing Sens-Hawks as “free game”. 0-0 still in the third. Not that surprising, but Toronto is smoking Tampa and the Oilers got off to a quick start against Boston, although lots of time left

  33. Habby_Haberton says:

    Condon’s mask looks like a mustard slash to his face, is that a nod to the hamburgler?

  34. Habby_Haberton says:

    Desharnais with another point. Gettin’ that extension baby!

  35. Danno says:

    Condon is getting a SHUTOUT for sure.

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  36. Chelios24 says:

    Habs should offer Radulov $7.3M per season for four seasons. He’ll probably take it even if another team offers longer term.

  37. Ghab says:

    6 years, front heavy to make room for Price.

  38. Timo says:

    I have to ask. Do we still like Claude Julien? Because if do, someone has to explain to me what has he done to improve the team. He did not improve Carey Price’s play so what then?

    • Chelios24 says:

      I hope Julien starts mixing in a tough/demanding side to his players instead of everything just being lovely and smiles now that he’s signed his 5 year contract. Habs need to win this or next season. Their prospect pool is too weak offensively and there won’t be sufficient cap $ to spend on good free agents once Radulov, Price and Pacioretty sign new deals. Never a good thing when your supposed best players are all in their 30’s.

  39. Timo says:

    0-0 turn against Chicago. I don’t like this. Sens will find a way to score some a$$ backward goal. When was the last time they lost?

  40. PK says:

    OMG!
    Leafs are the real deal.

    (Just kidding).

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      The Lightning have ZERO centers. All injured or traded. The fact they are even close to a playoff spot is a miracle. The Leafs should be clobbering them.

  41. chilli says:

    Considering many spend a ton of time complaining about our lack of scoring or offensive puck possession talent (some f–l even wants to trade Price), sign Radu to the 8 he wants.
    Just structure it properly.
    Or else he signs with someone else.

    We are a team that still hasn’t figured out our top 4 D pairings or our top 6 forwards – so we have lots of work to do – – but we can’t let this guy go.
    He’s the only exciting player we have.

    The Weber slapper is fun – – but we need puck possession.
    The Byron breakaway is fun – – but we need puck possession.
    That went out the door with PK.

    Radu is the only player we have that can skate through people and beat a D one on one.
    If MB can make mistakes by over-committing to Shaw, Plecks, DD, Emelin – than he must also do so with someone that is worth it.

    We need him as a top 6 for the next 5 years and then see where he is for the remaining 3.

    • The ice ghost says:

      Rad would be easier if Bargain Bergy hadn’t over-paid Shaw et cie, that’s for sure.

      In theory the cap should make GMs more responsible, but it doesn’t.

  42. Habby_Haberton says:

    Leafs gonna win a big one vs Bolts. This was a huge game, plus aisles gonna lose – big step towards Leafs making playoffs.

  43. PONCH says:

    Emelin crushes Turris, Ryan, Stone or Hoffman coming across the red line staring at that purdy pass. Boom. It’s an Emelin attack a la hit on Lucic. Whomever it is he crushes lies flat on their back. The other 4 Sens on the ice come to attack and see Martinson, Ott and McCarron. Ever so slowly they crawl back into their hole, look at each other and realize this is not the 2013 Habs. Excuse me Mr Boucher, I think I’d like to take the next shift off. Emelin smiles and Chris Neil thanks the lord he is still on IR. All is well in Habs land and the Bruins think, if we make the playoffs do we have to go through this AGAIN!!!

    To be a Hockey Fan is to be a Habs Fan

  44. Habby_Haberton says:

    For the love of god can someone get Nylander a helmet that fits and doesn’t sit 2 feet above his head.

  45. Habanero78 says:

    Why so much hate for Emelin, he had some bad games. The savior of the world PK was -9 for a while and is still -3… He’s the best in the league according to some.

  46. habs001 says:

    I believe the results in the playoffs will determine what the Habs do in the off season…Winning couple of rounds will cause the Habs to tinker with the roster…If they finish second and lose in the first round they would have to move some major pieces to change the team.

  47. Clemenza says:

    If Bergevin commits to more than 5 years on Radulov, he’s nuts. Radulov loves it in Mtl and I believe will sign with them if they are even in the same ballpark as other teams on salary.

    This reminds me of the genius 4 year deal he gave Davey when no other team in their right mind would have offered him half that.

    • Ktowner says:

      A long term deal can be structured on a declining scale in such a way that the money is richest for the first 4then declines after that. There are cap issues with such contracts which is the real challenge but that’s why MB makes the big bucks. I say sign him for 6 with a cap hit of 6 and a promise for 2 more at 2.

  48. oldguy10 says:

    Signing Radulov is a no-brainer – works hard every night -appears in really good shape – what’s not to like? 6-8 years – give it too him -use Jagr as a comparison – Bergevin better be focused on a “big-time” Dman in the off-season – It’s about to be proven this week-end as Ottawa’s Dmen are collectively much better AND they have arguably the best offensive Dman in the league. Habs are very weak in their own end when you have to say a 38 year old Russian Dman is still their best Dman.

  49. PK says:

    Rads could get an eight year deal?

    Rangers, yes.
    Habs, no.

  50. Butterface says:

    8 Year deal Radu’s agent is opening his mouth about is to prepare other teams to make an offer July 1st.

    Habs won’t make a deal until after the expansion draft because they want to protect other players….

    This puts pressure on MB to give more term than he is willing.

    Who knows where it will land, but MB does not have a lot of options here. He needs Radu, probably Markov too…. and of course Chucky.

    If Montreal doesn’t like 8, they will likely need to do 6… I am sure many teams will offer 5 and Montreal will have to give a little more.

    If our payroll goes up with Chucky, Radu and maybe Beaulieu, it will have to come down with Pleks, Emelin or Markov. P-A Parenteau’s 1.33 mil comes off the books too along with DD’s $700,000.

    I am sure the new muscle we traded for at deadline will be looked at. Martinsen comes to mind.

    We could lose Benn, Beaulieu, Pleks, Montoya, Carr or Davidson to expansion.

    But Radu’s agent, if he is asking for 8 years, is just preparing the table for other offers besides the Habs.

    ***********************
    If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it…..
    ***********************

    • Loop_G says:

      He wants to stay in Montreal, so we do have that. At the same time we need to be competitive as this is the only real big contract he will ever sign.

  51. joeybarrie says:

    Give him 8 years. We have Weber for that long and were willing to take on that contract.
    If it keeps the salary lower, i say do it.
    Rads is a beast.

  52. Danno says:

    Tonight it’s GO HAWKS GO!

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  53. AliHaba says:

    Habs’ History Flashback

    Feb.1, 1964 Bobby Rousseau scores five goals against the Detroit Red Wings. I remember this game vaguely; being ten years old at the time. One goal was scored by splitting the defense at full speed and scoring top shelf.

    • kalevine says:

      I was only 5 then, but the accomplishment was regularly discussed in my family. Specifically, the tongue in cheek remark was always that, apart from the 5 goals, he really didn’t do much 🙂

  54. Don Birnam says:

    Emelin. On his knees, looking like lost puppy.
    Get up man! Hit! Hurt! Show some self respect!

    • on2ndthought says:

      I’m thinking the flu hit him as the game rolled on; at least I’m hoping!

      • Mr. Biter says:

        AE seems to be making some bone head plays lately (Brain Farts whatever) but he’s still 7th in NHL in hits and we can use that vs Sens.
        I Like Radu but seem to sense his playing intensity has gone down lately. Maybe the flu’s got him but an 8 year deal must be giving MB nightmares.

        Mr. Biter
        No Guts No Glory

  55. Habitoban says:

    I think it is fair to say that, for the Boston Bruins, the most hated and perhaps feared player on the Habs in recent memory was #74. Now CJ has arrived from those same Bruins and #74 is in the dog house. CJ is a huge improvement over MT, but is it possible that some of that ancient history is colouring CJ’s relationship with Emelin. Hard to say whether CJ’s treatment of Emelin is a function of his poor play, or if Emelin’s poor play is a function of how CJ’s treats Emelin. CJ’s kind words notwithstanding, is there a little bias here on CJ’s part? To my eye, Petry makes at least as many mistakes as Emelin, and seems to get a pass,

  56. Arnou Ruelle says:

    People here are too quick to jump into conclusions on Radulov’s demand for an 8-year extension. We need to know first the following:

    a) The amount in “XX million$/yr”
    b) What the contract would stipulate.

    Radu’s agent will fight for that undisclosed amount+terms. I’m guessing this will be a $48 million for an 8 year extension. Guys, this is pro-hockey. If the Habs NEED a player who can pass the puck, who could contribute, who could score, who could be a good presence for the next 4-5 years, why not? However, what would the terms be? I would say yes if the contract has zero-NTC! Plus, Radulov would have to bite for a discount, like a $4 million/year. If Radu wants (if the term is true) an 8-year extension, and the amount is higher is higher than $5+ million, MB shouldn’t risk it.

    Thanks Alex Radulov for making things good this season, but if that is what you’re asking? No thanks.

    • Danno says:

      $48M over eight years?
      Shake hands very quickly on that deal MB. Because others will sign him for that price.

      ________________________________________

      “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
      Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

      • Arnou Ruelle says:

        $6 million a year will make all fans cry foul on the GM if he does give in. Me, they are pro-athletes. So if ppl. think these hockey players make a living cheap, hehe!!

        You’re right! MB should shake that hands with Radu’s agent.

      • on2ndthought says:

        No one else can offer him 8 years (unless LV grabs him??); but yeah, the point is take.

        Front load the contract so he’s earning $3or4 M at the end, with a $6 M cap hit, so frugal franchises can fill to the floor.

        • Loop_G says:

          LV can’t grab him. He’ll either be a free agent or protected at the time. If he is a free agent, they can make offers like anyone else after the free agency period starts.

          • on2ndthought says:

            I think they can make an offer in that 48 (72?) hour window. If Radu signs, they can’t grab anyone else off our roster. I think…

    • Thomas Le Fan says:

      Rads has 47 pts in 65 games including 15 goals. He’ll probably end up with around 60 pts and probably won’t score 20 goals. While he’s been an exciting and entertaining addition, lets not go crazy and over pay this guy. I would certainly investigate the likelihood of obtaining a higher scoring free agent than throw too much money at Radulov.

      It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so. – Mark Twain

      • 3 points for a win says:

        This makes total sense to me. Yes he has been great and is an exciting player BUT for potentially $6M/year MB should be able to find other players that can fit the bill for a lot less.

        • kalevine says:

          agreed. Committing so much for so long can be problematic. It’s already been done with a few of our guys, and there are a few glaring errors as a result

  57. PK says:

    UCe changed over to The Eradicator. The latter has been pretty quiet recently.

  58. PK says:

    Measuring stick* games this weekend. Wishing good luck to the Habs and our Ottawa Valley comrades.

    *tongue in cheek reference to an HIO meme.

  59. aroma says:

    anyone have an idea what’s become of Normand Harvey who used to write excellent posts here and maintained that fine blog of his, Restless Ineptitude?

  60. Mavid says:

    Lovely

    https://www.hockeyfeed.com/nhl-news/trapped-in-the-snow-and-no-one-helps-him-until-an-nhl-captain-saves-the-day?ref=jo

    º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º

    Weed Wacker -and now Flamethrower Grandma Smurf

  61. bwoar says:

    Good grief, gratuitous griping grinding Gallagher? Ghastly, grim, godawful.

  62. johnyk says:

    Schedule makers drew this one up right, best B2B of the season. Microfracture the ‘turds!

    Johnyk

  63. Gerry Pigeon says:

    Gally will return to 20+ goals next year, give him the summer to heal the hand.

    As MB likely is still the GM, and likely not trading Carey for offence as I wish, Habs need all the goals they can get.

    I wouldn’t give Rads anymore than $6M for 5 years. He’s great, but a 20 goal scorer that is only going to slow as the years go by.

    • toneez says:

      Gerry . you sure do have a one track mind don’t you , is there anything else that you can speak of besides trading Carey Price , if you’re not happy with Price there are other teams to root for just in case you were unaware ….

      All Habs all the Time

  64. trolly says:

    I couldn’t help but think of John Bellyfull when I saw this picture and it’s caption.
    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10212901310990729&set=gm.628746327320364&type=3&theater

  65. burnedprof says:

    Admittedly, Emelin has not been very good lately. That said, he has played through injury, including a broken foot, in the past. Moreover, he is also a new dad this year. This last brings to mind the ease with which HIO turns on certain players and reveals its biases. Fox News would think HIO is full of obvious double standards.

    Price has been getting an undeserved free pass for his wildly inconsistent play this year. He stank for two months and got a coach fired. Yet, he gets a free pass for being a new dad? Where was Pacioretty’s new dad pass last year as this site turned on him?

    Gallagher had a great game against Deadmonton. He was awful and invisible against Chicago, as he has been all season, with few exceptions. Yet, this site gives him pretty much a free pass when in truth, he was Therrien’s favourite, his little buddy, the one whose “deployment” and “elevation” and continued play should be examined. It’s nice to see him on a third line, where he likely belongs, provided he ever produces consistently again. I wonder why he gets a free pass, or better yet, why he doesn’t get the level of criticism for his over-use, poor deployment and undeserved elevation, to put it in the idiom.

    — (by request)
    Signature? I just want to change the picture attached to my profile.

    • on2ndthought says:

      Gallagher has earned some breathing room. Last year he was 19-21-40 in 53 games; the year before, 24-23- 47 in 82. Not only that, it was clear his absence was a big part of the swoon last year.

      He is showing signs, but there will always be nagging doubt about a small man playing a big game. Still, a return to form of Gally and Plek is the most likely prerequisite to a deep playoff run. Gally to his goal scoring ways, and Plek to his industrious two-way play.

    • ColdComfort says:

      Did anyone really give Price a pass because of having a baby at home? More of a joke I thought. He was in a slump. Now he’s not. Sports wouldn’t be very exciting if players didn’t play over or under their usual at times.

      I can’t believe Gallagher is done. This is his first pro season where he didn’t improve his scoring. Last summer some, including me, thought he could score thirty. He’s been a major disappointment for a team that needs goals.

      • MustardTiger1337 says:

        The two hand injuries on Gallagher is bad news along with the style of hockey he plays, it was a given sooner or later he would regress.

    • habsr4ever says:

      Price is NEVER given a free pass on here.
      Bergy and MT NEVER gave him a free pass. They said they are not worried about Carey returning to form and the normal Carey Price. Translation – he is not playing well.

      Price needed to be better for that month or so but heck – he himself said he was also fatigued. Call it an excuse but its a reason. Injury last year he only played until early November. World Cup in August. MT not giving him extra time off in between games for some unknown reason and playing him a way too much instead of Montoya. All – Star game etc.

      Who do you want in your net for a 7 game series out of the 30 starting goalies in the NHL?
      My guess is Carey Price is in your top 3 if not at the top of your list.

    • Jack Russell says:

      You should change your signature to CNIB. To use the word ‘stank’ and Price in the same sentence is a sacrilege. He played like an average goalie and is now back to the best. Tuesday night either you really are blind or missed the game. When has a player ever been clearly responsible for all the oppositions goals? And about Gallagher,
      you must have missed how Byron was gifted with Canadiens 1st goal.
      Once again, like against Edmonton, Gallagher worked his tail off to get the puck to Byron. Please have your eyes checked, and probably your brain as well.

      Jack Russell

      • Mr. Biter says:

        You must be a member of the “Biter” family albeit a distant relative.

        Mr. Biter
        No Guts No Glory

      • burnedprof says:

        Blindness references? My brain? My license hasn’t been taken away. As for my brain, I did always test well and self-congratulatory confirmation bias doesn’t pass peer review.

        For 2.5 months I watched, per the searchable, sortable stats at http://dobberhockey.com/players/Carey-Price, as Price was awful. When you look at the data, you see a below average goalie, with a save pct in the 890s and a GAA almost 3. If he’s the best, then he was worse than awful because those are numbers that would make us miss Mike Condon if they held over a whole season. He didn’t drop a level; he dropped orders of magnitude. He may be back to form, but I did see him wave feebly at the second Chicago goal, like someone in Trump’s America waving goodbye to freedom.

        As for Gallagher, in your glee to show me up with the multiple blindness references, you missed the part where I said very clearly, in the first sentence of the third paragraph, that he had a great game against EDM. While I’m glad you’re worried about my eyes and my brain, I couldn’t help but see that despite that very strongly and clearly worded sentence, you still accuse me of missing the one good game against a rather weak opponent. I don’t see how that’s a valid point given the observable evidence to the contrary. Regardless, there is the matter of seeing the Chicago game, to which I also did refer specifically. Per Mr Boone’s blog, Gallagher was invisible. I do have 20-20 corrected, but I sure couldn’t see him against Chicago. Then there’s the matter of his 6G, 12A, 18 pts, +3 in 39 games BEFORE the hand injury. I couldn’t help but see that these only look mildly abysmal because he actually had a decent Oct. His Nov/Dec stats simply are almost indefensibly bad: 2, 9, 11, -3 in 28 games. That’s a pace of 33 pts over a year. I see that as poor for a 2nd line and sometimes 1st line player who gets plenty of PP time. I don’t see the merit. The entire sad list is there to see at http://www.espn.com/nhl/player/gamelog/_/id/5614/brendan-gallagher

        — (by request)
        Signature? I just want to change the picture attached to my profile.

  66. Danno says:

    This break gives the Habs time to review some videos.
    Like the one of Shawzy skittering on all fours set to Benny Hill music.

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

    • habsr4ever says:

      The flu is running thru our team. I just want us to be healthy. And I can’t wait to see our BIGGER team vs the Sens who always try to play physical and take liberties with our smurfs.
      Size matters.
      Hello Sens – how do you like our size now?
      Let’s see who has the stones now to answer the bell when you do your chicken shat stuff.
      Meet mister Ott, King, Benn, Matheson. Have a nice evening. And remember we have two more HOME dates with you guys too. Weasels.

  67. B says:

    Acadia knocked off #1 Alberta 4-1 in the first CIS quarter final.

    –Go Habs Go!–

  68. 100HABS says:

    Wonder if we get a slight edge in preparation for this back-to-back because of our 4-day break. Jules et al. will get to look closely at the Ottawa team and see how we match up … and make decisions on who plays and who plays against who. We can be practice-specific in the days leading up to these (absolutely crucial) 3 games in 8 days. We can show videos and discuss how contain or aggravate Karlsson… how to beat their D, what type of PP and PK they play.

    • BC (Because of the Cats) says:

      In theory the break gives us a slight edge, but we’re more likely to be rusty than ready.

      “We gotta lotta dep.”

      • 100HABS says:

        It’s only 4 days, Tuesday to Saturday… not sure how much rust you accumulate in that time. Maybe a slow first period start …

        • habsr4ever says:

          Players like to play every second day.

          • aroma says:

            in the minds of Bettman and the owners, anyway.

          • 100HABS says:

            What I like is Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. If there aren’t enough of those, the odd Sunday will have to be thrown in. Stop with the Monday, Wednesday, and Friday games (Friday is reserved to go out). I want my Habs dose 3 times per week, every week.

  69. bwoar says:

    At this point I’d like to see them send McCarron down to help the Ice Caps.

  70. Danno says:

    Turd!

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  71. Mavid says:

    Bummer that we are the ones stuck with that stupid outdoor game..I would have thought the “battle of Ontario” would have been a better draw..

    º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º

    Weed Wacker -and now Flamethrower Grandma Smurf

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I’m curious if there was any negotiations between Melnyk/Molson and the league with regards to revenue of game. Habs have wanted to host one of these Cash Cows but don’t have the arena. I have to believe the crowd is going to be 70% Habs fans.

      • 100HABS says:

        Not really outdoors, but I would definitely attend a game in the Big O.

      • Mavid says:

        Apparently it has something to do with the 100th anniversary of the NHL and were it originated..my concern it that most of the events the Sens hold tend to be lame..and poorly done..for example the Trojan..and other things they have tried that failed, or they copied someone else..I was hoping we would not get sucked into this. As far as the % of habs fans you are correct it will be a minimum of 70..maybe more..

        º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º

        Weed Wacker -and now Flamethrower Grandma Smurf


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