Carey Price sidelined with stomach flu

After winning both their games on a Florida road trip this week, beating the Lightning 4-3 in a shootout and the Panthers 1-0 in overtime, coach Michel Therrien gave the Canadiens the day off Friday ahead of Saturday’s game against the Philadelphia Flyers at the Bell Centre (7 p.m., CBC, RDS, TSN 690 Radio).

Goalie Carey Price missed Saturday’s morning skate with a stomach flu and won’t play against the Flyers. The Canadiens called up goalie Robert Mayer from Hamilton to back up Peter Budaj.

The lines at the morning skate were Bourque-Plekanec-Gionta; Prust-Galchenyuk-Cole; Pacioretty-Desharnais-Gallagher; Moen-Eller-Armstrong. On defence it was Markov-Emelin; Gorges-Diaz; Bouillon-Subban.

You can follow tonight’s game on HIO with Mike Boone’s live blog and our new live Play-by-Play feature that keeps track of all the key stats on the fly: shots, goals, hits, power plays, shots on goal, takeaways, faceoffs won, hits, power plays, giveaways, penalty minutes and saves.

Heading into Friday’s NHL action, the Canadiens ranked 11th in the league on the power play with a 20.3 per cent success rate, which is an improvement over last season when they finished 28th at 14.3 per cent.

But The Gazette’s Pat Hickey thinks the power play would be better if Therrien put Raphael Diaz back on the point with Andrei Markov instead of P.K. Subban. Hickey writes that while Diaz’s shot isn’t as powerful as Subban’s, it is more accurate and Diaz does a better job of finding the open man.

(Photo by Pierre Obendrauf/The Gazette)

Diaz belongs with Markov on Habs’ power play, by Pat Hickey

New Bourque quickly erasing old Bourque, by Pat Hickey

Habs struggling in the faceoff circle, by Pat Hickey

Darche’s on-ice career might have reached the end, by Brenda Branswell

Flyers bring French flavour to the Bell Centre, by Stu Cowan

Flyers blow two-goal lead against Devils, by Philadelphia Inquirer

 

445 Comments

  1. B says:

    Dietz scores his 16th. The surging Saskatoon Blades have won 10 in a row and moved into 1st place in their division.

    –Go Habs Go!–

  2. New says:

    What kind of nonsense is that? Arguing that players can do more with a puck they can touch than a wild slapper roaring past their skull at 104 MPH. Balderdash. Thinking like that will not get you the “O-o-o-h” from the crowd that a booming missed shot does and it certainly doesn’t do a thing for bored trainers itching to stitch up ears.

    The other option would be to teach PK to use other players. They taught Chara to. They can teach PK to.

    • HABSGUARDIANANGEL says:

      diaz is turning into a MAB that cant score. pp specialist like him and DD are the type of player I dont like. If you cant dominate 5×5 or play strong D. go somewhere else. come on habs!

      • Phil C says:

        Diaz is not just a PP specialist. He has been playing almost 20 mins a night and has only been on the ice for 4 even strength goals all season. In the last game against Florida he played 22 mins, including leading the team with over 2 mins of SH TOI. He may be the Habs’ best penalty killer right now.

        You may love Subban more, but Diaz deserves a little more respect from Habs fans.

        • New says:

          Thanks for the assist. But people see what they want to see. PK has so much potential but he is stalled. This guy could be one of the top five, heck even number one, but he has to see the other guys and what can be.

  3. Chuck says:

    Budaj? Doooomed. They should start Mayer. 4-3 Philthy Phlyers.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Makes sense, the move to new arena could make people believe franchise can turn around. Wang probably knows it can’t be, time to get his money out. Might sell faster if they said buyer doesn’t have to take Garth Snow.

      • Loonie says:

        That right there is the issue. The NHL seems content to scapegoat revenue sharing as a way to help struggling franchises when the league itself put franchises into the hands of men who either can’t afford to run them competitively or choose not to.

        The real solution is to acquire owners who can actually spend money to ice a competitive team and then eliminate revenue sharing as a nudge to force them continue.

        Edit: Why in the name of hockey do the Stan Kroenke owned Avalanche have a tight budget?

      • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

        Isn’t the owner of the Brooklyn Nets some rich Russian oil guy? This would be chump change for him.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Interesting, yes he indeed he is a very rich man. I am not sure however, if he owns a KHL team already. I wonder if the NHL would allow an owner of a KHL team to also own an NHL team.

      • boing007 says:

        How’s that 15 year DiPietro contract working out?

        Richard R
        Price is an oyster. Unfortunately not all oysters produce pearls.

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      We all chip in…I got $3.51 in my pocket..whoops $3.50…penny no good anymore..

  4. jrshabs1 says:

    Price is out tonight…that’s the story of the day. P.K. seems to always be at the center of something…I’d rather see P.K. as the go to D-man over Markov. I’m waiting to see a glove fly high in the air, followed by great drama on the ice. Then P.K. can be the guy. As a matter of fact I’d trade Markov today for as many assets as I could get..but that’s me. I’d also employ a full time legit heavy weight…I’m ready for the beat down from HIO posters.

    Go Habs Go!!

  5. mdp2011 says:

    Lines for tonight:

    @JohnLuTSNMtl: #Habs lines vs. PHA: Bourque – Plekanec – Gionta;
    Prust – Galchenyuk – Cole;
    Pacioretty – Desharnais – Gallagher;
    Moen – Eller – Armstrong

  6. patrick says:

    PK is still the ultimate Defenceman with talent to burn and will still not reach full potential for another 2 to 3 years.
    He is the foundation for Les Canadiens.

    PatrickMcConnell

  7. patrick says:

    Where Is Jacques Lemaire when you need him??

    PatrickMcConnell

  8. beezee says:

    Since PK came back the PP has not looked the same. Get Diaz back with Markov and put PK on the other unit. Seems obvious to me.

  9. Loonie says:

    No Price? No problem.

    Well, it is a problem but much like when Markov went down with injuries this team needs to learn how to win without him in the event that a significant injury takes him out of the lineup for an extended period of time.

    Something the Red Wings are learning the hard way right now without Lidstrom.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      In a weird twisted way, this may be good news. As 24Cups pointed out, Flyers have lots going against them and Habs could easily walk in with a little overconfidence (not saying they do, but could) with Price out, forces whole team to refocus efforts.

      Okay, I am trying to find a reason to accept this as not brutal news. :)

  10. stevieray says:

    White in tonite ??

  11. HabinBurlington says:

    Okay watching episode 2 of CH24, finally got to see the finish of the exchange between PK and Price. Price its different this year, PK says Oh yah, and Price finishes with “We’ve got some leadership”

    So is he talking players, coaches or GM or everything?

    • von says:

      I’d wager on the front office.

      _________________________________

      “Obviously it would be great, but they don’t really hang conference titles in this rink. They raise Stanley Cup banners.” – Carey Price

    • Curtis O Habs says:

      I thought the leadership comment was directed mainly towards the G.M. and perhaps the coach. CH24 is a good program but easily could be an hour long.

      • von says:

        I agree. I’m surprised they don’t have enough material for each episode to be an hour.

        One thing I wish they did for the program would be 1:1 interviews with the players/staff like in 24/7.

        _________________________________

        “Obviously it would be great, but they don’t really hang conference titles in this rink. They raise Stanley Cup banners.” – Carey Price

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      Everything especially the GM. Looks like Prust has become a leader which is good. It is easy to ignore Gionta and Georges but hard to ignore a guy who’ll knock you into next week. Plus he shows up every game unlike other “tough guys” on the team.

    • savethepuck says:

      I took it as meaning leadership re management and possibly coaching staff. I don’t think it was any secret that PG didn’t interact with the players, MB seems to be more interactive with the players.

      “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
      Carey Price

  12. jmsheehy19 says:

    All you fantasy guru’s, need some help here.

    Just got offered Rinne, Backes, and Burns for Fasth, Pietrangelo, and Tarasenko.

    I’d drop Backes and pick up Brunner, so losing Tarasenko doesn’t matter, but losing Piet hurts. And While Fasth has similar numbers to Rinne, I’m still concerned what happens when Hiller returns.

    Any help?

    EDIT: Alright, so after drops and pickups it’d be Fasth, Piet, Tarasenko out – Rinne, Brunner, Voynov in

    • Loonie says:

      Nope. You lose in the star department.

      Never give up “the guy”.

      In this case you have two of the “the guys” in Pietrangelo and Tarasenko.

      • jmsheehy19 says:

        I’m a little desperate as my other two goalies are Rask (ewww but he’s still reliable) and Quick.

        If Quick rebounds then I’m fine, but man as he been awful and is now losing starts to Bernier.

        EDIT: Also I have Shattenkirk, Letang, and Markov on D, so I can take technically take the hit.

    • rnnoble says:

      What are your categories? Is it just G and A, or do you have extra categories, like PIM, hits etc? If you do, I’d be very hesitant to drop a guy like Backes who will give you solid multicategory production, for Brunner, who has not proven anything yet. If you plan on dropping Backes and Burns anyway, why not ask for something else from your trading partnert? Rinne plus one other elite guy in exchange for your three guys? Is he willing to negotiate, or is this a take it or leave it offer? Basically, as far as you’re concerned, your current trade is Fasth, Piet, and Tarasenko for Rinne. In your mind, the other two are spare parts that can be dropped to the waiver wire.

      • jmsheehy19 says:

        Backes could be useful, but I need shots more than anything, which is why I’d go for Brunner. And he’s been ridiculous stubborn in trades with everybody, so I’d imagine if I counter with even a slight modification he’ll go back into into hiding.

        and we have 5 goalie categories to 6 skater categories, so steady goaltending is key.

  13. von says:

    Pat Hickey’s article is ridiculous.

    When P.K. first came back into the lineup, Therrien kept Markov/Diaz as the first pairing, as he should have. After they were struggling in that game, Therrien moved P.K. into Diaz’s spot, which made sense.

    As a lot of people have already pointed out, the PP is struggling because teams are ferociously pressuring the Habs in the offensive zone which is when they start attempting high-risk/low-percentage passes. They might make the first one, but they are bound to turn it over on the second or third.

    To simply blame the PPs recent struggles on switching P.K. for Diaz is an irresponsible analysis IMO.
    _________________________________

    “Obviously it would be great, but they don’t really hang conference titles in this rink. They raise Stanley Cup banners.” – Carey Price

  14. Habfan10912 says:

    Price out. Flu.

    ———————————–

  15. CranbrookEd says:

    Price out with the flu . . . don’t these guys get the flu shot?

    CranbrookEd
    Mr. Beliveau: “Pure Pak mais oui”! . . . What ever happened to Johnny Jelly-Bean!?

  16. OMG says:

    As far as performance goes. The Habs are a better all around team but. I never count the Flyers out. Very unpredictable.

    I hope the Habs think the same way or it could be an early exit.

  17. MrNax says:

    I have no clue why everyone is praising Diaz. He’s done very, very little to impress me. He backs up to Price’s crease when defending and fumble the puck on the regular. He single handedly cost price a shutout. While we were on the POWERPLAY! He’s soft as butter. Deal him. He’s a very slight improvement on Kaberle. IMO

  18. RobertLefebvre says:

    That’s one very flawed and unaccountable article by Hickey in the Diaz – Subban comparision. The important details it leaves out is almost unconscionable.

    First, the quality of opponent is not considered. The PP ratio may have dropped in the last half dozen games because the opponents penalty kill is better than the first dozen teams earlier in the season. Secondly, Diaz had 20 or so games under his belt to start, whereas P.K. had no training camp with the team, and stepped right in. Third, for the most part, in the first three games of Subban’s return, he was barely used at all on the first wave of the PP, so he can hardly be blamed for the drop in efficiency. Last but not least, P.K. has obviously tempered his big blast from the point, leading to two powerplay goals. Diaz has none.

    Raphael might own a smoother puck movement option, but Subban has more variables all around. He can shoot, pass, carry to the net. While it is certainly true that good puck movement is the key to a good powerplay, less predictability is also an asset. If teams are consistently certain which pair will step over the boards to play the point each time, they can better defend against. By rotating Diaz and Subban, there is less predictability, especially with P.K.

    To my eyes, the bigger reason for the drop in efficiency is the employment of players such as Max and Cole at the right boards. Neither is a suitable passer for that wingman position and in both cases would be better positioned in the slot. The wingman on the first unit should always be either of Pleks, Davey or Galchenyuk. Like Stubbs is wont to say, it’s “Blame Subban” all over again. Hickey states that 11 of P.K.’s 26 shots have been fired wide. How many of these were in fact on the PP. What is the similar stat for Diaz?

    • Loonie says:

      Probably also doesn’t take into account that defensemen often shoot a couple feet wide of the net in an attempt to get the forward in front of the net a favourable chance at changing the direction of the puck with a deflection.

      Stats, stats, stats. Zero analysis given to what’s behind them.

      • RobertLefebvre says:

        Very true. I was going to add that point, but there’s no stat for it. I’d gone on long enough. Wasn’t one or two of Markov’s PP goals scored with exactly that same ploy?

        • Loonie says:

          Yep. Cole and Desharnais both had effective screens on a couple of Markov goals. He wasn’t necessarily trying to give them deflections.

          There have been several chances this season generated from the wide shot looking for a deflection. Markov looks for Plekanec and Gionta with them all of the time.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      Right Robert! Therrien will have to come around if we are to win games. To much of Dias and Emilin is costing us big time.

      • RobertLefebvre says:

        He’s slowly working P.K. up to his old 25 minutes + per game. I’d especially like to see more of Subban in late game, critical situations, where bodies need to be cleared from the crease area. To be frank, the late game collapses in Buffalo and Tampa had as much to do with dumb calls by officials and stupid bounces than anything else. You can’t always simply blame players and coaches when the crazy stuff starts happening.

  19. munch17 says:

    Francois Gagnon writes an article about Darche and how he would be more valuable to the team than Armstrong.
    Now I agree Armstrong hasn’t been lighting it up but he hasn’t hurt the team either. He hasn’t buried a few chances that he has had but he created a few of them on his own. He is skating pretty well and the 4 th line has actually been more effective than the others on some nights.
    So personally I prefer CA.
    Now I wonder if FG figures that MD will end up in management somewhere and this kind of promotion will endear him to a future insider. Otherwise I can’t figure out why he would waste his time on a pretty trivial piece of the puzzle.

  20. Gally27 says:

    February 16, 2013

    – Carey Price is out with the flu. Robert Mayer called up from Hamilton. Mayer, 23, played 26 games with the Bulldogs this season, posting a 11-10-3 record with a 2.99 GAA.

    http://canadiens.nhl.com/club/blog.htm?id=261

  21. CharlieHodgeFan says:

    I like Diaz on the powerplay because he is better than Subban at finding the open man. He’s less predictable. Subban is a type every team needs – the hungry scorer. He wants to put the puck in the net. But he is not always aware of his team mates in that. He’ll wind up when given time, rather than get the puck to someone better placed. Some guys pass too much, some shoot too much.
    Subban needs to be fed. He’ll score goals if he has a quarterback to feed him. He’s no quarterback himself, yet. He loves the Hail Mary too much.
    Diaz will score less, but he’ll make the team score more. He’s not as flashy, and not as good an overall defenceman, but on the PP, with experience, he can become a deadly technical set up man.
    In a year or two, PK may learn. Without Markov though, the Habs PP would not be in a good state with Subban leading it. He’s an important piece of a winning team – a very important one. But he has his limitations, like everyone.
    And I really underestimated what Diaz could bring to this team. He has been a revelation.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      Charlie! you have been between the pipes a bit to long my friend! PK can thread a needle with the puck, it is always right on the tape when passing, he can fake a shot and make a move to buy time for mates to get into place. His unpredictable moves keep the opposition off balance. He is the most creative player we have had in 30 years.

  22. Ian Cobb says:

    Once Therrien realizes that Dias cannot be as creative as PK on the PP, and it is now not producing like the first couple games when Markov was scoring game winning goals. He will revert back to PK on the point.
    Therrien’s love affair with Emilin and Dias has already cost us. Do not get me wrong, I like both players and they are getting better, but they can not do with the puck what PK can.

    • 24 Cups says:

      Ian – I know how much you admire PK but he can still work on improving his shot selection and accuracy. He needs to work on his shot from the point in terms of timing and telegraphing. Also try to get it on the net more.

      • Ian Cobb says:

        He needs a lot of ice time Steve! He has not played for 11months and has only been on the ice for two weeks in game conditions. He needs a few games of 20 to 25 mins to get things together.

        The more he sits, the more he tries to do out there in these short shifts that he is getting. Anyway the cream always finds a way to the top my friend.

      • RobertLefebvre says:

        Steve, looks to me like P.K. has worked on a lot of things, including his shot accuracy.

        • Chris says:

          Yep, but he still fires 90 mph passes at his teammates and often passes into their feet.

          His pass accuracy is what I’m more concerned about, not his shot accuracy. And Diaz has been better, in my opinion, at getting the puck tape to tape.

          • RobertLefebvre says:

            I think the recipients are just more prepared for a Diaz feed, than from P.K. So are the opponants though. I think Therrien should continue to deploy both, based on how the opponant is covering. the options are a good thing to have.

          • Ian Cobb says:

            Chris! I think you better watch a little closer at PKs dead on passing and how he gets the puck out on the PK as well as his bringing players towards him, only to put them out of position with his moves, opening up a shooting or passing lane. He can take over a game and change momentum.

          • Chris says:

            Ian, I’ve watched Subban play in Belleville, in the Memorial Cup, in Hamilton and now in Montreal. Trust me, I’ve seen a LOT of P.K. Subban, both live and on television.

            He is a fantastic hockey player.

            But his three biggest weaknesses in my opinion remain:

            1) He simply does not have a “feather pass” option. Watch Markov…he frequently makes passes that are just the right speed for a one-timer. Subban does not yet have that ability. Nor would I expect him to…he is still young and a bit raw. But that is a big area of improvement for Subban as a powerplay quarterback.

            Watch how often Markov has to stretch or dig a pass out of his skates when receiving passes from Subban. That is terrible passing because it gives the penalty killer time to aggressively pressure Markov, forcing him into either a dump into the corner or blindly throwing it on net. I see this play 2-3 times per game where a bit better passing from Subban would have Markov in a good position to make a one-touch pass or a one-timer on net.

            2) He still goes for high-risk, low reward hits at times. There is no reason for an elite defenceman to turn around backwards and try to plaster somebody at the blue line on every play. He’s better, but he’s got to continue to improve at picking those spots.

            3) He still has a penchant for chasing opponents around the defensive zone, sometimes drifting far out of position to do it. This was a massive problem in Belleville, and he’s improved by leaps and bounds since then. But its still there on occasion, and that type of play often results in a forward looking bad because they didn’t expect such an extreme rotation by their defenceman.

    • Danno says:

      Emilin is a lethal tank at our blue line with his bone-crushing hits. That is where he is most valuable. PK needs to be allowed to do what he does best. MT needs to unleash the beast, and enhance our players strengths – not turn them into something different or better persons.

      ________________________________________

      “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

    • BJ says:

      Ian we need the flexibility. Mixing things up and having options is something we have missed over the last many years. Everyone is too sensitive about PK. I think he’s doing great and will continue to improve, I like the apparent maturity he seems to be displaying, particularly with his rushes, they are well chosen so far and not putting the team in trouble.

  23. Sap Anderson says:

    Is it just me or is Pat Hickey the most boring hockey writer alive? He reports the odd fact, sure, but never with any value added. His piece on PK is the closest I’ve ever seen him come to making an opinion, and it had no substance to it. Shame on you Mr Hickey shame on you!!

  24. Loonie says:

    Prediction.

    Plekanec scores a shorty tonight.

  25. Loonie says:

    Double post so I’ll edit and add another thought.

    This whole no Subban on the first wave of the powerplay is a little premature. The powerplay has been successful with and without Subban. But development should be a consideration in this case as well. Subban is very likely to be the PP quarterback when Markov’s gone provided Beaulieu doesn’t unseat him. No reason to have him warming the bench because he needs to develop experience in being the key cog to the Powerplay and in becoming more patient and accurate from the top of the zone.

    He won’t get that in practice.

    • 24 Cups says:

      I think the thread title is an old writer’s trick to stir up controversy and site hits.

      I’d start the PP with Markov/Diaz and then give Subban the entire 2nd half.

      Eventually things will sort themselves out. Subban is the best Dman the Habs have and should get the most ice time. As mentioned before, he has three basic areas where he needs to improve on before becoming a top end guy. Once that happens, look out.

      • Loonie says:

        I hear you Steve, but with Subban’s age and conditioning I’d be more inclined to give him the entire Powerplay a couple of times each game. He isn’t being relied on heavily at even strength or on the penalty kill and he could certainly handle it.

  26. HabinBurlington says:

    No amount of time in jail is enough for these creeps, but glad to see the Manitoba courts at least increased the length of sentence to Graham James.

    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=416058

    • Ian Cobb says:

      As a young street kid, I know all about the garbage on the streets Gerald. When I heard that his sentence was increased yesterday, I was somewhat pleased. When he gets out, I would love to spend the day with him maybe up in the arctic someplace. Only one of us would be returning!

  27. 24 Cups says:

    The Flyers have seven players on the injury list right now. As well, Kimmo Timonen didn’t play beyond the 17:12 mark of the second period last night due to an specified injury.

    Factor in that Philly is playing their fourth road game in six nights (after losing to NJ last night), as well as starting their back-up goalie, and you have to feel pretty optimistic about tonight’s game.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Why does all that information make me think the opposite will happen Steve?

      • 24 Cups says:

        I know. I was thinking the same thing. Just trying to be logical!

        My major concern tonight is the impact of meatheads like Sestito and Rinaldo. They represent everything that is wrong with the game today. Not that the league cares or wants to do anything about it.

  28. Cal says:

    Habs vs the Flyers tonight.
    My take on the City of Brotherly Love’s team:
    http://calshabsongparodies.weebly.com

    Now with a chintzy slide show.

  29. savethepuck says:

    So the Bruins lost last night, here’s hoping a win by the Habs tonight allows us to wake up Sunday morning sitting in 1st place in the Northeast.
    Who’d a thunk it was possible 14 games in?

    “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
    Carey Price

  30. OMG says:

    The lines look the same as the last game for tonight. Would have liked to have seen ELLER at center on the second line against Philly.

    Big tough team just to see how he could do against these guys on a top line. fourth line don’t prove anything skill wise. Chase, Bang, Crash.

  31. HabinBurlington says:

    Shouldn’t there be an article yet asking why MB is trading away all of our francophone players with the move of Desjardins?

    • Mike Bone says:

      There would, but this isn’t RDS. I’m sure Lavoie’s winging his way to Tampa to do the full Desjardins tribute at this very minute. There may be tears.

      • That’s exactly what you do. The Habs aren’t the greatest team on ice, but you can almost guarantee the Leafs will never make the playoffs. The only thing that may save them this is that many teams are worse than them. They beat us twice, but both games the Habs failed to show up.

        edit: this comment is in the wrong reply due to LOC

        Should be one post down, maybe two, I forget, now I don’t know why I am still typing…..3-2-1

        LET’S PACK THE HOUSE
        Be A Pro Fundraiser Feb 24th (see web site for details)
        Shane Oliver
        Twitter @Sholi2000
        http://www.Sholi2000.com
        Custom Sports Figures

  32. JarryPark says:

    On a side note, Leaf fans have gone silent in my office and i have not received any emails on how much the Leafs are better. It got so bad after last week, one clown sent me a screen shot of the standings.

    Funny how things change in one week. Go Habs Go!!

  33. JohnBellyful says:

    The NHLPA has filed a grievance with the league, alleging Therrien’s efforts to make better persons of his players have crossed the line.
    The coach’s methods have been open to conjecture – until now, with the players’ union having submitted clear evidence that Therrien is not only trying to make the team better, but in at least one case, Desharnais, bigger as well.

  34. Mavid says:

    Happy Hockey Day everyone..i was just watching the Poke the Bear Videos if you have not seen them you should they are hilarious

  35. HabFanSince72 says:

    Check out the Ducks.

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/playerstats.htm?season=20122013&gameType=2&team=ANA&position=S&country=&status=&viewName=summary

    Their leaders include 3 players who were all basically rejected by another NHL team: koivu, beauchemin, souray.

    All 3 are also ex-Habs.

  36. Habfan10912 says:

    I don’t necessary agree with Hickey. I think right now both PK and Markov are both quarterback type players although PK has a decent slap shot. I think it might just need some more time. Diaz is NO PK but does seem to get the puck on net. Give it a bit more time is my opinion.

    ———————————–

  37. JarryPark says:

    Just received my Galchenyuk jersey last night. Happy camper.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Congrats. I am a jinx so I only buy no name jerseys or former players.
      BTW – Love your user name. My favorite ball park. Many great memories. CHeers.

      ———————————–

      • JarryPark says:

        I hear ya. In my closet today. Kovalev (gone) Cammy (gone), Plex, Subban and the old faithful Lafleur. Bring it out on special occasions.

        Welcome to team Chucky.

        Thanks on the JarryPark user name. Jarry is my last name. JarryPark was a nickname in high school.

        • habstrinifan says:

          Trade you your Lafleur for two Wickenheisers.

        • neumann103 says:

          I have a Larry Robinson signed (game worn in an oldtimer game vs Nordiques alumni) which is great as Larry was one of my favorites growing up and we share a name

          Plekanec is my favorite Hab and I have worn #14 since I was 7 years old (when Mario Freaking Tremblay wore it) but I have avoided getting a Plekanec jersey because then they would immediately trade him.

          I did however buy each of my kids Cammy jerseys after he was traded- for about 15 cents on the dollar.

          “Et le but!”

      • Sportfan says:

        Everytime I buy a shirt with a name they left early Higgin, Tanguay and Cammelari so I quit buy the shirtrs with the names although my GF was a Chuck shirt haha

        http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  38. Habfan10912 says:

    Darche could be playing hockey. He elected NOT to accept a two way contract with the Habs.
    ———————————–

  39. Danno says:

    Habs are currently fifth in the conference standings

    http://canadiens.nhl.com/club/standings.htm?season=20122013&type=CON

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

  40. HabFab says:

    Hudon broke his 5 game pointless streak last night with 2 goals and 2 assists while losing 5-4. Archambault meanwhile had 1 goal and 2 assists as his team won last night in the Q.
    Bozon and Dietz both had a goal out west.

  41. HabFab says:

    A translation from an article in LaPresse in which Lefrebve has this to say about Beaulieu and Tinordi.
    “Nathan was very risky in junior and we really want to turn him into a complete defender, says Lefebvre. The offensive comes naturally for a gifted player when he is effective in his end. ”

    Lefebvre loved the game of giant Tinordi before he gets hurt. “He has good puck movement and he was consistent night after night.”

    Tinordi returned from his injury last night.

  42. montrealtilldeath says:

    PK should stay with Markov. Diaz is some what timid on the point. If given a choice to step forward and keep the play in the zone he will 90% of the time step back. PK has the instinct to move forward knowing he has the strength to hold the opposition player in if he loses the race for the puck. He almost always keeps it in. The Markov Diaz pp was not performing that well before the change was made as teams had adjusted and noted what I have stated about Diaz when he is challenged at the point.

    • JarryPark says:

      Agreed. If you were the oppisition, you would rather face Diaz, Markov. PK is a game changer. They focus on him to take away his shot hence breaking up the box. Habs take advantage of that by making plays in tight. Not to mention PK holds the line better IMO

  43. Habfan17 says:

    Maybe the Habs should be looking at Kerby Rychel in the draft. He is 6’1″ 200 lbs and a left wing, 17 points in his last 7 games, overall
    55 games played, 32 goals, 35 assists, 67 points, 58 pims. He is a minus 15 but the Spitfires aren’t that good. It might make sense if thier first round pick ends up fairly high, then maybe they should trade up or a player to get another first round pick if Rychel is still available. If Bozon can translate his production to the NHL and Rychel was picked and could do the same, having Patches, Bozon and Rychel on the left side would be nice. All over 6″ and 200 lbs and can score.

    Habfan17

  44. HabFab says:

    Hi-lites from the Bulldogs game last night. They had a come from behind 3-2 SO win. Believes that makes 3 wins a row;
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s4n_yA66fVM&feature=player_embedded

  45. HabFab says:

    HW’s grading of the forwards in the 1st quarter;
    http://www.habsworld.net/article.php?id=3010

  46. Bash says:

    Don’t you find it a little weird that PK hasn’t shortened his windup for the slapper. It’s obviously a problem.

    “If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” (anon)

    • Danno says:

      I noticed he actually toned down his windup on several occasions lately.

      ________________________________________

      “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

    • habstrinifan says:

      You just pulled that outta the old complaint box P.K. has, as said below, toned down his slapper. He now mixes it in (maybe a case of had to 100% lose it..and I dont think he should either) with low velocity shots at the net.

  47. AceMagnum says:

    Why would you get ripped for that? You may state your opinions freely and anyone who has a problem with that can go to Borneo!

  48. ProHabs says:

    Have you guys seen this video. What a loser.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fP_DNNPBr40

  49. theox_8 says:

    I’ll probably get ripped for this, but Diaz and Markov haven’t looked that great in the last few games, and PK deserves to be on the first wave . I’m not even sure if markov should be out there first at this point.

  50. Buzz Lightbeer says:

    Such a shame about Manny Malhotra. Still such a young player,seems like a classy guy. I’m sure the nucks organization will look after him as they should. Wish he could teach our forwards a thing or two about taking faceoffs.

  51. awesomerino says:

    Great idea. Let’s take PK off the powerplay to break him out of that point-per-game funk he’s in. Only 4 PP points, including 2 goals, in 7 games? Sucks.

    • athanor says:

      How often does one pairing stay out for a whole power play? And where does the story say he shouldn’t be on the PP. It just says that Markov and Diaz worked before, really well.

      I, for one, see no reason that it shouldn’t still work, or work again.

      Then P.K. could head up the second half of the PP with whomever.

  52. jedimyrmidon says:

    RDS has a video saying that Darche would fit Armstrong’s role and might even be better… Maybe that’s true, but the channel’s agenda is pretty blatant.

    • Clay says:

      I agree with them though. I also have an agenda – making the Habs the best team they can be.
      Although there are still a LOT of better players than Darche…

      __________________________
      ☞ The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. ~ Richard Feynman ☜

  53. SBAH says:

    “I feel sorry for the Bruins falling apart in the 3rd period” said no Habs fan Ever ;)

    • Danno says:

      That’s really too bad.

      I’m sending the Bruins a lovely fruit basket to cheer them up.

      NOT

      ________________________________________

      “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

  54. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …Just one of the things I fine ironic in this day & age’s NHL is the significant ‘French Flavour’ of today’s Teddy Bears and Phlyers

    …tabarwit ! :(

    _________________________________________________________
    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY
    http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=423049

    Campaign to Retire Toe Blake’s Number 6 !!!

    …and, last, but not least: FREE PK !!!

  55. B says:

    The worst ranked FO team (Buffalo) beats the top ranked FO team (Boston) for the second time in three meetings so far this season.

    –Go Habs Go!–

  56. HardHabits says:

    Here’s the thing. Good coaches change things up sometimes. Sticking with the same lines or this or that defensive pairing gets stagnant and opponents study the video, analyze it, then proceed to tear it apart. Obviously developing chemistry is a good thing. Why not develop chemistry over a broader scale and spectrum?

    It’s a good coach that makes adjustments, like putting Galchenyuk with Bourque for the OT winner last game.

    So yes Diaz with Markov. But also yes Subban with Markov. Play who’s hungrier or who fits the plan at any given moment. At any rate we’ve seen Diaz with Markov so it’s like there’s nothing to see here people, move along. We don’t need a controversy.

    Speaking of which. Let’s stop changing the subject! What about Eller getting more minutes than Desharnais? How come we no see Eller with Cole and Pacioretty? Even if as a PP unit!!! Maybe just for a shift or two. Then send out DD with Cole and Patches and see if it doesn’t light a fire under his arse.

    Line combos or D pairings are not marriages nor are they set in stone. Staying the course when things go well is obvious. As the saying goes, “If it’s not broke don’t fix it.” Juggling lines and making changes on the fly when the situation calls for creativity is a gamble and risk but at least it’s action. Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result is not just insanity, it’s a very, very boring madness, like a cathartic, invalid and perpetual droning.

    Go ahead. Change it up and Tweak™ it.

    So Diaz and Markov on the PP. Subban and Markov too. Heck even Emelin and Markov. Why? Because Markov, old war horse that he is, elevates whoever’s game he plays with. And that people, is the real story here.

  57. Timo says:

    Will removing PK from power play be controversial?

  58. Marc10 says:

    That Diaz video is impressive until you realise he’s on international ice taking those point shots. He has tons of time. Not so in the NHL.

    My ideal scenario on the pp:

    I’d like a passer (Pleks, DD, Eller or Chucky) down low right next to the goalie, a giant screen with hands in front (Max, Cole or Bourque) and a big shot on D, kitty corner to the passer.

    If you could find a way to turn PK into a hybrid shooter/passer on the point, that’d be ideal. He’s good under pressure, fast and tough, a natural risk taker, and he can cork it on the one-timer. He gives you a ton of options. In time, he’ll get there.

    Or if we’re on the market to get an upgrade on D: Repatriate Mark Streit and get him fed by Markov. That will do it.

  59. 24 Cups says:

    Looks like the Habs will face Boucher tomorrow night.

  60. OMG says:

    I have a feeling they better have their power play straighten out for tomorrows game with Philly. They are gonna be ugly after losing against New Jersey tonight.

  61. krob1000 says:

    I have been on board with this since the first game watching the chemistry between Diaz and Markov ….
    PK can anchor the second unit….and do a great job at that but Markov and Diaz are both equal shooting/passing threats and make passes that PK doesn’t. When pk is out there it seems like they are setting the play up for him to take the one timer…when the Markov Diaz duo is out there….it just seems to flow, it is all about taking what is given to them…it just works.
    It also gives Diaz some confidence and on the 2nd wave when the 4th d is not really a pp d is out there….then PK can be the focal point..and will still have success because he is that good.
    Markov and Diaz were leading the league on the pp together before the team broke it up for some bizarre reason

    • JP23 says:

      I have to agree, while both Subban and Markov are amazing players and key players on the powerplay, I do think it more wise to split them up. That way there would be two very effective defensive powerplay units. Subban and Bouillon had some success together. Markov and Diaz moved around so well with the puck together and were very effective as we all know. And as you said, Markov&Diaz just seem to be a perfect fit.

    • habstrinifan says:

      Markov and Diaz effectiveness dropped precipitously…check it out. P.K was not granted that slot immediately on his return, it happened after the PP declined. And in fact it may only be a game or two in which P.K AND MARKOV have started as the first pairing. Diaz is then removed (granted lately very quickly) for P.K.

  62. RS says:

    In the OT powerplay against Tampa, didn’t MT put out Markov and Gorges. Perhaps we can all agree that that’s not a great PP combination? A 4 on 3 is a perfect opportunity for Markov and Subban.

    Diaz and Markov sounds fine with me for the first wave. I’m more concerned with Subban getting ice time 5 on 5 and reducing Markov’s 5 on 5 time.

  63. RC-51 says:

    Does anyone know if the 2nd episode (aired Feb 15 on TSN) is available anywhere online? Missed it and would really like to watch it before next episode is on tv, thanks!

  64. marlowned says:

    I agree. Too many cooks in the kitchen. Aaron Rodgers is a great QB; that doesn’t mean putting Tom
    Brady in the backfield with him is better.

  65. Renegade says:

    Agreed 100% on Diaz being paired with Markov. If you go back and watch every power play this year, it’s the obvious choice.

    On the PP, Diaz is calmer with the puck, makes better passes, and keeps his feet moving constantly. This forces the penalty killers to back off more, as if they are too aggressive, Diaz exploits that with a well placed pass to the open man.

    Nothing against PK, he is offensively gifted, but the power play isn’t all about having the hardest shot.

  66. lavie says:

    I will, put Diaz over PK, and put Subban over PP. :D

  67. Chris says:

    I genuinely believe that Subban is the best Habs defenceman. But I don’t know that he’s the best option on the first wave of the power play.

    This comes about for two reasons. One, I just haven’t felt like he and Markov complement one another all that well but I’m hardly alone in that sentiment. Secondly, and perhaps just as importantly, I feel like Subban’s presence on the power play wipes out Brian Gionta.

    Here’s the logic (or lack thereof?) on this. Subban likes to shoot from the top of the right circle. Many of his goals have him rotating down, and that he seems to like to play a bit lower than most PP pointmen. But with him standing there, it means that Gionta, the right-handed shooting forward on the PP, has nowhere to go. He’s not a guy who’s good at screening the goalie,despite his compete level.

    Plekanec likes the left half-boards, and Markov and Diaz showed a nice ability to get shots through from out near the line. With Diaz or Markov up at the point, it leaves plenty of space for Gionta as well, and Rene Bourque can be the mucker in the corner and drive the net, where he is at his most effective. Essentially, it makes for a very nice 5-man unit.

    Subban is an elite shooter, and playing on a wave with Pacioretty, Cole, Desharnais and Bouillon makes him the focal point of the power play with two big bodies to cause net havoc and a shifty centre who has a knack for finding the puck in chaos.

    The only problem with this is that Therrien tends to over-use Markov (such as the nearly 2 minute shift on the PP in overtime the other night), which minimizes the ice time that Subban will get. But as Montreal’s top scorers from last season, that group could do a lot of damage in the second half of the PP against the second-wave penalty killers.

  68. OMG says:

    Pat Hickey: Does he know anything about Hockey. Diaz with Markov on the power-play over PK. Hickey should watch a few games. He has no clue.

    • Clay says:

      Or – and hear me out here – perhaps YOU should watch the games. Because when Markov and Diaz were paired up, our PP was much better than it is now. It doesn’t mean that Diaz is a better player than PK – it just means he’s better in this situation.

      __________________________
      ☞ The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. ~ Richard Feynman ☜

  69. AnimalMother says:

    PK is ripping it up. Although, 2 strong waves are better than 1.

  70. GordC says:

    Diaz over PK … Are you crazy !!!!! PK has been on fire they need to get him the puck more !

  71. Sportfan says:

    Thank you I’m glad I’m not the only one thinking that. I said it days ago the PP seemed off with PK and Markov on the same line at least now they can change the lines and have PK and Markov on different ones. The PP was much more dominant with Diaz. Don’t get me wrong PK is great, but for now let the PP unit that was more successful go back out there.

    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  72. ari says:

    19 votes 1%,8 votes 2%.looks like the poll needs upgrade in math! why people give d and f i dont get it.

  73. JF says:

    Agree with Hickey about Diaz. It’s not just that his shot is more accurate than P.K.’s, he’s also a better passer. P.K.’s passes tend to have too much on them, making them difficult for the recipient to handle.

  74. Bill says:

    Not the first article I’ve seen about Mathieu Darche. Sure gets a lot of attention for a fringe ex-hab player.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

  75. Chris says:

    You honestly think more Leafs are on the juice than Habs? :)

    I’ve heard rumours about players on just about every team. Some I believe, some I don’t. But you know that there are guys in the NHL that are using PED’s…there is too much money in the game for people to not look for any edge possible.

  76. habstrinifan says:

    Kinda love this rant! Whether it’s true or not what you say it sounds scurrilous.. which IS the earmark of a good rant!

  77. Marc10 says:

    It’s not like the guys are on the full WADA random test, right? And that’s easy to circumvent. The thresholds are set so high that even a natural born freak with a VO2 max that is off the charts would still fall well below… Let’s not kid ourselves.

  78. Clay says:

    After his stellar 11 point campaign last year, is anyone surprised?

    __________________________
    ☞ The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. ~ Richard Feynman ☜

  79. Danno says:

    But he brings so many intangibles. Like being a good guy in the room…

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

  80. kirbhabs says:

    at least he is doing it for less than a million for them, seems about right for a room mascot…. In Montreal that is a 7 million mascot.

    Also, wondering if SJ nose dive in the standings that occurred just after he left has something to do with how the guys are in the room…. LOL

  81. habstrinifan says:

    Bite your tongue! Criticise him all you want but do not try to impugn Gomez’s goodness in the room…in any room. Heck I have heard it said that Gomez doesnt even tolerate sh**t in an outhouse.

    You are banished to Borneo!!!

  82. Clay says:

    Are you saying he’s good in the room?

    __________________________
    ☞ The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. ~ Richard Feynman ☜

  83. B says:

    From the main article (at the top of this page):

    The lines at the morning skate were
    Bourque-Plekanec-Gionta;
    Prust-Galchenyuk-Cole;
    Pacioretty-Desharnais-Gallagher;
    Moen-Eller-Armstrong.
    On defence it was
    Markov-Emelin;
    Gorges-Diaz;
    Bouillon-Subban.

    –Go Habs Go!–

  84. Habfan10912 says:

    I like Prust a lot and I know he is providing protection to Galchenyuk but he is over exposed on the 2nd line. Could we switch Prust and Pacioretty?

    ———————————–

  85. Ian Cobb says:

    Subban still on 3rd D pairing, wonder if he gets to see the ice more than a 30 sec. shift tonight on the PP.

  86. 24 Cups says:

    When I look at that line-up I see that we are three players away from making some major noise.

    Prust should be a 4th liner with occasional 3rd line spot duty. The team still needs a really solid top six left winger.

    We have the log jam at centre (which has been discussed daily on HI/O) but still don’t have a true 4th line pivot (which is no reflection on DD/Eller).

    Bouillon would be the perfect 7th defenseman. As many have said before, a large, hard-assed Dman would be the final missing piece.

    In the pipeline are Tinordi and maybe Collberg. The UFA market can bring in a solid 4th line centre. The secret will be finding one or two more solid pieces without having to break the cap ceiling by signing UFAs. Maybe the team can get lucky in the draft and snag another MaxPac in later rounds.

  87. Andy and the habs says:

    I was gonna say the same.

  88. GGtheHab says:

    I had the habs, but when I noticed price not playing the +130 on the flyers looked too good to pass up..still hoping for a habs win though


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