Multimedia: Gallagher, Bournival returned to junior

Tomas Plekanec

Canadiens centreman Tomas Plekanec in his team’s Brossard dressing room.
Stubbs video capture

VIDEO: Scroll down
AUDIO: Brendan Gallagher (before he learned he was being returned to junior)

The Canadiens announced Friday afternoon they were returning Brendan Gallagher to the Western Hockey League’s Vancouver Giants and Michaël Bournival to Shawinigan of the QMJHL. Gallagher has been hands-down the feel-good story of the Habs training camp, the best rookie in camp and, on some nights, the best player.

The Habs also announced that forward Joonas Nattinen had been reassigned to the Hamilton Bulldogs of the American Hockey League.

Montreal now has 32 players in camp, including nine out with injuries: Andrei Markov, Travis Moen, Hunter Bishop, Brendon Nash, Lars Eller, Olivier Fortier, Louis Leblanc, Ryan White and Ian Schultz.

The Habs held a 10 am meeting at the Bell Sports Complex in Brossard on Friday, stepping onto the ice for an 11 am practice before heading up to Quebec City Saturday morning for that evening’s return engagement against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Then the team flies to Toronto and heads to Collingwood for three days of bonding and practice before returning to T.O. for the Oct. 6 season-opener vs. the Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre.

Injured Travis Moen was the only sick-bay skater seen on early-morning ice, working out alone on the rink for maybe 20 minutes.


I sat down at 8:30 this morning in Brossard with captain Brian Gionta for a profile story that will appear in our Hockey Inside/Out season preview section coming Oct. 6.

Gionta said he obviously wasn’t happy with the team’s 1-6-0 preseason record heading into its final game. Then he added: “It’s been a tough preseason but ultimately you have to look at it in a few stages. The first 6 games or so we were kind of feeling out our prospects. We had a lot of half lineups where a lot of young guys were getting good looks. Last night (a 4-0 loss to Tampa Bay) and Saturday are big keys to our preseason.”


If defenceman Andrei Markov meets team doctors today, as announced last night, to get a progress report on the health of his rebuilt right knee, don’t hold your breath awaiting an official update from the club. We’re bound to hear Markov is progressing on schedule and will be introduced to the lineup when he’s ready.


  1. Superheater says:

    I’d like to see desharnais centering paccioretty and cole. DD and Max have really good chemistry.

    cammy pleks gio
    paccioretty desharnais cole
    kos eller gomez
    moen white darche

  2. HardHabits says:

    Winnipeg is in the South East Division. WTF is that? They couldn’t re-align over the summer???

    I suspect that another team is moving (maybe even to Canada), and the league doesn’t want to let in on it yet.

    Why the Coyotes didn’t go to Winnipeg I’ll never know. So now it’s friggin’ musical franchises.

    I have a great idea. Move the Coyotes to Quebec. The Wild to Kansas City. The Avalanche to Minnesota and Dallas to Oakland.

    Stop the music. Everybody sit down.

  3. SmartDog says:

    Komiserik scored in overtime and the Laffs beat the Wings.

    Please do not start listing all the Habs that Komi out-scored in pre-season.

    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

  4. Timo says:

    I like where this is all going… Halak vs Boooday! Should provide for some great discussions.

  5. nickster13 says:

    Even in the raw practice footage, our guys never score. Of course Price is very very good, but i think thats a very telling sign that we have difficulties putting the pucks in the net, so i hope this gets addressed somehow, ideally by a shot trainer, why dont we get one of those?

  6. Chris Higgins says:

    Are they losing yet?

  7. Marc10 says:

    I was discussing Budaj with a fellow HIO whiner and he brought up the point that Halak, before he turned into St Jaro, had poor rebound control (which was always Pricey’s strength).

    Once Jaro made a few adjustments, well… we all know what happened.

    I guess we can hope the same for the new Slovak on the block… Sure Budaj’s problem is stopping pucks full stop… but his positioning and mobility seem decent.

    I have to believe the same organization that drafted Pricey and Jaro knew exactly what they were doing when they let Auld go and brought this new guy on board.

    • Bill J says:

      In terms of UFA pickups, PG is no BG though. Cole is PG’s only real good pickup that way so far.

      We can also thank BG for the drafting, as he had a hand in choosing Timmins.

      But the real clincher for me that makes BG > PG, BG hired Boucher… PG let GB walk.

      We had the Crosby of coaching, and kept the Recchi of coaching instead.

      If you want to add an avatar here, read this and follow the steps

      Go Habs Go!

    • JIMVINNY says:

      Halak’s rebound control still blows. What adjustments do you think he made? Even in those games against washington, he was having to make 2 and 3 saves when it should have only been 1, because he kept kicking pucks right into the slot.

    • Tony McLean says:

      They don’t walk on water.

      You have two choices: Break Chara’s nose and win or grab your ankles and lose. There are no other choices. Make a choice.

  8. CharlieHodgeFan says:

    Oh hell, why not state the obvious? The Habs could have had a perfect preseason record. Start the first six D, put Price in nets, start the first rank forwards, and forget the kids.
    Instead, some young players got a taste of the show that JM apparently can’t bring them along to. The club prioritized the future and the young guys, and we have gotten to see them. Gallagher, Beaulieu, Bournival, Dumont – these guys are more than names now. They’re something to the fans, and I suspect something more to themselves. They’ll have learned a lot, and they will be better players more quickly for it.
    We have seen a process. They tanked for the future…

  9. samTHEman says:

    You guys remember when Cammi was out JM used Pacioretty-Plekanec-Gionta? That might be interesting…Cammi-Gomez-Cole….hmm. Did Cole play LW or RW in Carolina?

    It’s P.K. Tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiime

    • neumann103 says:

      Mainly played RW as a left handed shot. That plus the surprising speed for a guy of his ilk has led to some pretty surprised D men when he steps in from the wing at full speed.

      “Et le but!”

  10. Landof10000lakesHab says:

    Knowing there are (9) Hab players currently injured, including (4) NHL regulars, provides possible insight (irony aside) into what may have been a primary objective for Habs Mgmt during preseason — avoiding injury.

    The annual preseason ownership money grab creates significant injury risk for all NHL teams, but more so for Mgmt of teams (Leafs) that choose to ice a majority of NHL regulars.

    With junior and minor league players looking to impress NHL brass in preseason games by displaying two way skills (hitting anything in an opposing uni), most NHL regulars are likely trying to work into game shape, all the while minimizing injury exposure.

    Last season, the Habs started the regular season strong (15-8-1), and despite significant injuries to key players, rode the hot start to a spring playoff date. The Leafs had a miserable start (8-11-4) and although an impressive (un-leaf-like) run from Feb onward (18-9-6), missed a ticket to the spring dance by more than a touchdown. It is likely that BB is anxious to build momentum off the Feb – April run and perhaps drove the decision to ice the majority of regulars throughout the preseason. Injuries to Boazk, Connolly, and Kadri likely has BB wondering if this was the right decision.

    Recent history may have played a role in the current preseason plan for both clubs. For the Leafs, a well meshed group strong out of the gate is likely the stretch hope for a spring playoff date. For the Habs, it is possible the injury risk to regulars during preseason, and thoughts of what could have been last season if not for the (Markov, Gorges, Cammi, Max) injuries drove the decision to ice mostly players in preseason that had little hope of wearing a Habs uni this winter.

    Looking at the Habs win-loss record during this preseason leaves me with some uncertainty on how well they can respond out of the gate, but as this group is mostly intact from last season, one should think there is little issue with players needing to acclimate to one another. I am also left wondering if additional players might have joined the current injury ranks had Habs brass decided to ice a more seasoned group the past several games.

    Hab fans, we should know which strategy worked best by the end of November.


    • pmaraw says:

      good insight and very likely. my thought was to just forfiet all games vs boston preseason and regular. but at the shanahan suspension express rate, im not all that concerned about it.

  11. j2w4habs25 says:

    Awwe I wanted to see Brendan Gallagher in the line for Toronto but i guess not ahaha… oh well, this team has to start winning games regradless if pre season or not lol the real season is just sleeps away am i bet were all carious for this season.

    Carey Price #31

  12. habbsy says:

    I have been a Habs fan all my life, but lately I wonder if the management has any idea what it is doing, Gallagher was the spark this team needed after such a pitiful pre-season. Martin and Gauthier has to go…now

    • Mark C says:

      You want to dump the HC and GM because a 19 year old, who had one point in five pre-season games, didn’t make the team? Outstanding! I give you an A for creativity.

      • habbsy says:

        I must apologise. I wrote that as soon as I read Gallagher was gone. My meaning was that these guys have been consistently bad with they’re decisions. Budaj? Did no one look at his stats before they signed him? Auld was better goalie who seemed happy to be here for less money. What about Drew Macintyre? He now has an agreement with Buffalo that says he will see NHL ice-time this year, all he wanted, a foot in the door. They could have had him up for the year for a few games at lot less money. I happen to know somebody who up until this year was a part of the Habs organization, in a management role.When I asked why the Habs had no real physical presence on the ice his response was that Martin and Gauthier did not believe it was needed. I think we saw how we were pounded around by Boston last year. Sure the Habs were within a goal, but what kinda of shape would they have been in for the next round after being beaten up for 7 games. I am not saying sign a goon, but have a couple of guys who will drop them and are good at it. Gill is a great guy and a super PK defenceman where he just has to stand in a 6 foot circle and swing his 7 foot stick, and he is “great in the room”, but he is softer than butter in July and my 9 yr old could skate circles around him. But they bring him back. I like Erik Cole and I do like the Campoli signing and if that one game is any indication, he will fit good. There is more to say, but you get my idea. I didn’t mean this one decision was the reason to fire these guys, but I really think the organization, ie. Mr. Molson, should be keeping a watch for some replacements.

    • CanadienBoy says:

      The system my friend ,The system …… or you,re gone .

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      It’s called a 19-year old whose best route for development is junior hockey, playing on the first line for his team, playing the World Juniors and at the end of the year, perhaps suiting up with Hamilton.

      – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
      SF09 on Twitter

    • Habsrule1 says:

      Never ceases to amaze me what people write on this site. The kid looked pretty good but he’s not ready for the big time. Most fans can see that and the coaches and GM can definitely see it. Only a handful of players have ever made the NHL straight out of junior. Next year he might be ready, but even then he’ll likely only be ready for the Bulldogs.
      But ya, let’s fire the whole management and coaching staff cause Gallagher didn’t make the team.

      Go Habs Go!!

      “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

    • I think it’s best we let management decide what’s best. There aren’t many rookies (draft class 2010-11) going to make any teams this year. Gallagher is no Mark Scheifele hehe 🙂

      Shane Oliver
      Brandon, MB,Canada
      R7B 2R7
      Ph- 204 724 8418

    • CharlieHodgeFan says:

      It’s natural to pull for Gallagher – the kid is a young sparkplug. However, hockey, like anything else, has to be learned and we have fans that are too nasty to learn in front of. Let the kid improve his technical game, just as Beaulieu will. He’ll be back.
      His attitude is what the team needs – a forward as driven and enthusiastic as Subban is on D. I really enjoyed his play, but if they had kept him up, management would have deserved to go.
      It was the right decision. Damn.

  13. SeriousFan09 says:

    Defencemen Jarred Tinordi has been named the captain of the OHL London Knights for the season. Not his first go-around at the title either, he captained the US Under-18 team to a Gold Medal in his draft year.

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
    SF09 on Twitter

    • samTHEman says:

      So you’re saying he’s the next Chris Pronger? And if he doesn’t turn out to be….#blamesubban

      It’s P.K. Tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiime

  14. Thought I’d check in here… Everyone still whinging about preseason? Yeah? Alright, checking out again.

  15. Bill J says:

    Not saying this means anything, because it really doesn’t. It is pre season after all.

    But the Starley Cup Winning Bruins record in last years pre season ?

    1-3-1. (against NHL teams)

    Pre season means squat!

    If you want to add an avatar here, read this and follow the steps

    Go Habs Go!

  16. C_exacte says:

    If the preseason is any indication, the Rangers won’t have trouble beating Goteborg this year.

  17. samTHEman says:

    I’d still rather have Martin than Boudreau. And if you don’t agree, ALT+F4

    It’s P.K. Tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiime

  18. Neutral says:

    If preseason is any indication of how good the Habs are. we are in for a long depressing hockey season.

  19. Superheater says:

    Not sure who said desharnais was slow, but I saw hinm set up a few guy for awesome chances…if you watch desharnais closely, almost every single game he sets up guys for what easily could and should be goals. Its not his fault guys havent finished…. and while he may seem slow, he’s always in the thick of things.

    I did see however gomez pull his usual full speed through the neutral zone and turnover the puck for an odd man rush the other way a few times tonight….. kositsyn is a guy I’d like to see on another team…i find his hockey IQ to be low, and he is consistently inconsistent.

    Apart from that, its only preseason. If I see a problem down the road with this team, its that JM’s coaching style and system dont fit the type of talent this team has…

    can JM change his style to match the talent he has?> I dont think he can, but we’ll see. If you ask me, we have pricey back there who gives us the opportunity to let the guys run…move the puck, transition…in other words, remove JM’s system and take a much more up tempo strategy. Guys like pk, campoli, diaz need to push the puck up to cammy, cole, gio, desharnais, maxpac and all the rest. Dont get me wrong, JM is a solid coach. I just am not sure his type of hockey suits this team. If we had a soso D and a soso Goalie, i’d say, ok, JM’s system is a good thing….but we have a faster more mobile D and a great goalie who can handle the odd man rushes that come from a more freewheeling system…

    In boucher’s hands, this team’s a different animal. I dont think scoring was down because of the guys last year, I think scoring was down because of 2 things; the system and the constant line changes. I’d like to see JM let lines stay together and tell them when the slump surely comes to work it out themselves. I would also like to see JM lose his cool once in a blue moon …on the bench, in public…BERATE SOMEONE from time to time. The players need that. None of us really knows the deal in the room, but I suspect the guys dont like the line shuffling and I also suspect some guys wish JM would reem out a guy on the bench once in a while instead of just scribbling in his notepad.

    lastly, its just preseason. Let’s just enjoy that hockey is back on again!

  20. The_Franchise31 says:

    Smartdog- I like gorges as much as the next guy but too say he’s going to get another raise after this year is crazy. Sure in habs fans eyes he a brick wall but he gets worked in the corners, has a terrible first pass and my little sister is a better skater then him. He’s all guts and a real trooper but no way I’d re-sign him for more then he makes now

    • Ozmodiar says:

      So, you’d sign him at his currently salary, but to suggest he might get more is CRAZY?? I see.

      I wonder how that would fly at the negotiating table.

      PG: “We’d like to have Josh back for a 2 term year at his current salary. We’re firm on the dollar amount because, you know, we’re not crazy.”

  21. Danno says:

    The Habs have been on a campaign to make people think twice about buying fake jerseys.

    That’s fine.

    Now, if only they would stop playing fake hockey.


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

  22. BONZOHABS says:

    I played goalie for 11 years and watching Price just amazes me. He rarely over-plays a puck and uses his size to his advantage. He looks like he doesn’t care almost—obvs he does—and it’s effective. Simply amazing! Price is the best goalie in the league right now. Next Roy in my eyes. Very nonchalant looking and it kinda reminds me Dryden’s book. Dryden highlighted the reasoning of his famous position—leaning on the stick. To make his players feel that everything was okay with him and to give a message to opposing players that he wasn’t phased. I see that in Price. He reacts with what and when he has to, rarely over reacting. Makes me feel “safe” knowing he’s Our goalie! Go Habs Go!

  23. ThatOldChestnut says:

    There is something wrong with the state of our fair game when 9 players are on the disabled list during *training camp*. Just sayin’.

  24. Gerry H says:

    From Sean Gordon at the G&M:

    It’s a good job that NHL teams aren’t sovereign countries – they don’t have to worry about tut-tutting from outfits like Transparency International.

    There are few places in the league where the veil of secrecy is as firmly attached as Montreal, but on Friday the Canadiens answered a couple of questions with clear, straightforward answers.

    Firstly, injured defenceman Andrei Markov is officially unable to begin the season next week in Toronto.

    The talk about Markov’s recovery has been prudent and murky since camp opened, but it turns out there was never any serious expectation he’d be good to go by now.

    “From the outset, we’ve known he wouldn’t be ready to start the season,” said coach Jacques Martin.

    At the same time, Martin stressed that Markov’s recovery from knee reconstruction is going according to plan and “nothing has changed.”

    Markov met with the team doctors on Friday to assess his progress.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Yeah right. They gave him a 3 year deal and Gorges only one.

      • otter649 says:

        UFA & RFA – Gorges will get his money when he becomes an UFA….

        • SmartDog says:

          Yeah and Gorges wanted alonger deal. Really nice of the Habs to tell him to hold out for more money from them in the future instead of signing onto a good deal now. That seems to be how PG negotiates. If they guy is going to burn out before the end of the contract, give him lots of money so he’s not suffering later. But if they guy is liable to pick it up over the next couple of years, keep him on a short term deal so he can earn more money on the next contract. That’s why we’re so close to a cup – great negotiating like that.

          Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • habstrinifan says:

      I dont know who Sean Gordon is but in the post above he seems to credit the Canadiens with some semblance of news honesty and openess when they now admit that Markov wont start the season and go on to say that they knew this “from the outset” .

      Poppycock! This organization in attempting to look like they are running a tight organized ship lies and lies and ends up looking absolutely foolish and unprepared when time and events reveal the truth.

      It was only weeks ago in training camp that Markov was saying that he ‘will be ready’ to start the season and PG gave all indication that he agreed with Markov.

      Pierre Gauthier, time and time again, vindicates Pierre MacGuire’s characterization of our GM as an ‘habitual and incorrigible’ liar.

      Only problem is that PG’s growing reputation for falsehood is now attaching itself to this proud and gloried franchise.

      Another way we are gradually seeing the diminishing of the Holy Grail image that used to be Les Canadiens.


      • SeriousFan09 says:

        You’re using Pierre Mcguire as a source of reliable information? The guy has two faces when it comes to his analysis and has contradicted himself on plenty of occasions and carries a ridiculous vendetta against Gauthier only for the fact that Gauthier has the job that he is woefully unqualified for but wants anyway.

        Carey Price’s drafting was “right off the reservation”, wow that’s not a questionable remark and the Canadiens had a fine future in nets with Theodore, Huet and Yann Denis. What are those guys up to again?

        – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
        SF09 on Twitter

        • habstrinifan says:

          I am fully aware of McGuire’s ‘vendetta’ against PG due to their history. And therefore he is not wholly objective but PG’S conduct of news info gives credence to McGuire’s accusations of untruthfulness… that is all I said.

          You extrapolate from that that I consider McGuire an infallible source of all things hockey?

          In fact one of McGuires worse moments and about face was when he asked Price , during a game, about Halak being in net and tried to ‘confucate’ to hide the iappropriateness afterwards.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            A liar calling another man a liar means what exactly?

            Markov’s setback with his knee, the swelling occured after the team said they believed he was ready to start the season. Much like most teams say their player is ready to go, until unforseen circumstances cause a setback.

            – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
            SF09 on Twitter

        • GrimJim says:

          Don’t forget Mcguire saying Phaneuf Komisarek and Beauchemin being equivalent to the Habs Big 3…

          • solomio says:

            Habs have a big 3 ??

            “I figure PG has one or 2 moves left to bring the Habs that extra step closer to perhaps being the best in the league.” – Einstein

          • GrimJim says:

            According to some of the posters here that would be Yemelin’s stomach, gomez’s laissez faire and AK’s brain cramps…
            But for the record I thought Mcguire was referring to the Habs Big 3 of Robinson, Savard and Lapointe from the 1970s teams

          • Bill J says:

            There’s only been one “Big Three” the reference surely a comparison of the 70’s Habs big three.

            If you want to add an avatar here, read this and follow the steps

            Go Habs Go!

      • LA Loyalist says:

        There may be legit issues with PG, but you can’t hang him on obfuscating on a severe injury to a star like Markov.

        ALL pro teams lie about injuries, and ALL serious injuries are variable in recovery time. Crap, we didn’t know if we’d see Patches this season, in my mind he’s WAY ahead.

        And at least Markov’s is to a degree a known, quantifiable injury. Imagine being Pens GM with Crosby, or Ducks with Hiller’s bizarre vertigo? Remember Forsberg trying to bring his ankle or foot I don’t remember the specifics back to life…

        Resigning Markov was worth the risk. This is part of the price.

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        “an ‘habitual and incorrigible’ liar.”

        And a vegan to boot.

      • otter649 says:

        Maguire has never gotten over being fired by Gauthier when both were in Ottawa so when he has a chance to slag PG he will. The same way PM goes out of his way to praise Brian Burke who was the one who hired him to coach The Whalers but for some reason no team in the NHL has hired Maguire to be a coach or manager since (only a scout in Ottawa)…….

  25. avatar_58 says:

    I *love* that Plek has a specially made habs turtleneck.

  26. Hobie Hansen says:

    IS Hall Gill going to be playing with Diaz on opening night?

    Is Brian Gionta going to be playing on the 3rd line on opening night?

    Are we going to have a rookie with zero NHL experience playing with Gomez and Pacioretty?

    Is Peter Budaj going to be between the pipes?

    So relax people, exhibition means absolutely nothing.

    The defense will be much tighter and if the Canadiens fire as many shots as they did last night, we’ve got nothing to worry about. Roloson had a horseshoe up his ass.

    • Matt. says:

      I thought Gallagher looked really good, definately more effective than Enqvist and or Blunden.

      But yes you’re right, two minutes into game 1 of the season we’ll have forgotten about the Canadiens lame exhibition season.

    • solomio says:

      Rolonson had a horse shoe up his ass? Considering the number of times we hit him in the chest its a wonder it didn’t pop out

      “I figure PG has one or 2 moves left to bring the Habs that extra step closer to perhaps being the best in the league.” – Einstein

  27. LA Loyalist says:

    Do you guys think Kings signing Doughty for more $ than Kopitar will

    a) cause dressing room issue?

    b) completely blow managements’ credibility? (they said they were firm on matching Kopitar, but not going over)

    By the way, this is only story #7 or #8 in LA Times Sports today.

  28. Bripro says:

    Hey, Plekanec is wearing a turtle neck? When did he start that? 😉
    Also, looking at Price, he looks cool, calm and collected. I love this kid. I hope PG doesn’t wait until the end of the year to sign him long-term.

  29. derfab says:

    Last night: Desharnais was slow and got a lot of ice time (presumably to get ready) and Budaj looked more or less like the back-up he is. Rolston, an elite goaler, controlled the rebounds. The other vets, knowing there are 82 real ones ahead, typically have trouble getting up for these games. This team will show up, though the key to any real success will be Markov.

  30. C_exacte says:

    Markov ready for home opener? je suis….rehabilitated

  31. TommyB says:

    Time to get real.
    Reality #1- Pre-season losses mean nothing, but do indicate certain things. No point in getting upset when losing a pre-season game where two thirds or more of your lineup are just wannabes. However, last night was different. It was pretty close to opening night lineup vs Toronto. Was I impressed? Hardly. Is the sky falling? No. At least, not yet.

    Reality #2- One pre-season left. That’s one pre-season game remaining for a team that hasn’t put many regular players on the ice at the same time, up to last night. Chemistry? Even though these guys have all played together for at least one year, this is a new year, after a prolonged summer. Not much time remaining to get re-acquainted. One pre-season game left followed by 3 or 4 days of drills and inter-squad scrimmages allows little time to get the old chemistry flowing quickly.

    Reality #3- Despite the claim of nine players out with injuries, the reality is that only four of them play on this team. So there are 4 guys out, not 9. Still not good, but not quite the big excuse some are making it out to be.

    Reality #4- The Pre-season, as most will admit to, means absolutely squat. But what does mean something, and it’s pretty darn important if you ask me, is that a team get out of the gate with a quick start. Those early games in a schedule can either pad you a nice little lead, or put you in a little hole that could get deeper and harder to climb out of as you go along. So, I’m hoping to see a much better effort in this last pre-season game coming up, and a win although meaningless pointwise, would be a confidence booster heading to Toronto for the opener.

    So, I’m far from panicking, but I am starting to grow a little concerned. It’s TIME TO GET REAL.

    • habsfan reduxit says:

      … at this time of the year, sporst media pundits are fond of telling fans that these games really don’t mean anything – they’re simply exhibition games. Bull feathers!! These games mean as much to the fans as any other.

      … I’m with Roy MacGregor on this one; if it’s time to broadcast the games on TV, if it’s time to charge fans admission to the rinks, it’s time to start the season. Enough with meaningless games presented as the real deal.

      “Whenever you have the puck, and don’t know what to do with it, put it in the net.” – Toe Blake

    • LA Loyalist says:

      It will mean nothing if we win 6-8 of our first 10. It will in retrospect, however, seem to be freighted with meaning if we keep losing.

      Also, the other teams aren’t playing with a full deck either. It’s not going to get magically easier on opening night.

      And if we were playing pre-season pond hockey and losing 5-4, 7-6, that would be one thing, but TWO shots in the 3rd period last night?

      To me that is profoundly disturbing on an effort and character level.

      I guess the bottom line is time will tell. Tick tock, tick tock….

    • GrimJim says:

      Just to put pre-season in context, last year’s preseason records: Cgy 7-0; SJ 2-4; Van 3-5; To 5-3-1; Edm 4-2; Det 3-5; Flo 3-2 and Bos 1-3-1. Four of the six conference winners had losing preseason records last year and the team with best record finished out of the playoffs
      On the other side of the coin: Atl 0-5-1; Min 0-4-2; Col 2-5; and NYI 1-4.

  32. Danno says:

    Best of luck to Gallagher, Bournival and all the Habs prospects. And many happy returns!


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

  33. Vladdy Mondavi says:

    I’m not sure if the link for this article has been posted yet, so I’ll post.

    Yet another argument for Dryden as Commissioner.

    • SmartDog says:

      It’s quite a hike but a good read.
      All the way through I was thinking …did Bettman read this?… could he NOT see it? How can he hide from the obvious wisdom of this… though he’s hidden for years. And then finally the thought – if there were poetic justice Bettman would either be throw in jail, or severely concussed. If… but there isn’t.

      Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

  34. Habitant in Surrey says:

    Test: ~^o^~

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

  35. joewindsor habfan says:

    did anyone else notice that raw footage of the habs practice. there must of been at least 8 or 9 shots put on Price and they all went wide! No wonder they can’t score during a regular game, how do you expect them to score when usually they have at least 2 opposing defencemen between the shooter and the opposing goalie. in practice its just the goalie and they still shoot wide! OOhh, this is so going to be a long season. (LOL) just having fun folks!

  36. Wow, the more things change, the more they stay the same. What a lot of negative ninnies. Here’s a question: would you rather

    1. get a solid idea of our organization’s current and future players with odd line matchups and lots of young’uns on our exhibition roster — even if it means we lose a bunch of games that don’t count for anything; or

    2. ice your finest players, max out their preseason icetime, play your best NHL scorers and shutdown players when appropriate, increase your vets’ risk of injury in meaningless games, and still not really see/evaluate your prospects in real-game high-pressure situations — just to pad your preseason stats?

    We may disagree on the details, but we all pretty much know already that this is a team that will finish somewhere between 4th and 9th in the East. At worst, the team is a little better on offense and a little worse on defence than last year. So why the panic about two lousy starts from a backup goalie who’ll see 15 games this year, if that? or Markov’s slow return — we did alright without him last year. Or about the lacklustre performance of AK — hello, have you been watching him at all for the last few years?

    If we drop 7 of our first 10 games, then you can hit the panic button. But come on — the sky-is-falling routine in preseason makes about as much sense as freaking out because Hal Gill quadruple-bogeyed on the 16th hole at the charity golf tournament.

    Mike Boone: “With Gainey at my side, I’d walk into any dark alley in the world.”

  37. Habs fan in SF says:

    doesn’t hurt for Gallagher to have another big year in Vancouver and play for Canada in the world juniors. I’m pretty excited to see him and Beaulieu play for Canada

  38. PrimeTime says:

    Gee. I would not have ever guessed that the main topic of discussion after playing Tampa would be Martin vs. Boucher. Almost as predictable as “Size and Toughness” after playing Boston. Hmmm I wonder what the main topic will be after Toronto??? PG vs. Burke??

  39. LA Loyalist says:

    Anyone else notice Mickey Ribs (Mike Ribeiro) scoring a goal and 5 assists last night? IN ONE GAME…

    Boy, good thing we dumped that bum and got Gomez…

    Just saying…

  40. habaddict_andy says:

    I checked Tamba Bay’s schedule for their last four games. Not only they are not as extensive as Montreal’s pre-season schedule their games were also in smaller hockey market such as St-Louis and Florida than here in Montreal. Knowing some players likes to play here in Montreal I can’t help but think they must have been really pumped when they stepped on the ice last night.

    I was disappointed last nights outcome and I was not sure if I should remain optimistic with this team but I will hold my breath and see how we actually do when the season starts.

    Go! Hockey! Go!

  41. B37zc says:

    Gallagher and Bournival are going back to their junior team

    • Chrisadiens says:

      It’s the right call, but damn, Gallagher was pretty good. Hope he OWNS in junior. Bournival wasn’t too bad either. Future looks great.

      Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        Agreed. Let’s not wreck more good kids with panic moves before the freaking season even starts.

        • B37zc says:

          +1, there is absolutely no need in him at this moment. Yes, he is young and talented, but our current roster is packed. Also, as it was many times mentioned here, we do not need another Latendresse situation here. Let him develop one year in WHL, then bring him to Bulldogs to add some seasoning.

  42. habstrinifan says:

    Hey JM talk about lack of work ethic. All I did today was read HIO.

  43. SeriousFan09 says:

    Brendan Gallagher, Michael Bournival and Joonas Nattinen have been cut from the team’s roster. Gallagher and Bournival report back to the Vancouver Giants and Shawinigan Cataractes respectively. Nattinen’s cut may mean he is finally healthy to play (you can’t cut injurred players) so that’s good news for the Bulldogs and for us, Nattinen is potentially a faceoff ace for the team in the future.

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
    SF09 on Twitter

    • habstrinifan says:

      So that’s it folks! Not one prospect was able to crack ths powerful team.

      • AK_PK_Usay says:

        Its not theyre not talented, they are, but they’re just way too young, most of our good prospects are under 21. They lack the physical strength to last in the NHL.

        In 2-3 years we will get about 3-4 guys joining at once and they will be upgrades over current roster. Think Leblanc over Gionta, Beaulieu over most of our D… Tinordi, Gallagher, Avstin, Kristo, etc.

        • habstrinifan says:

          I am ok with Gallagher and the others being sent down. They are not ready. I am just in a bad mood re the team not showing any ‘addition’ of spirit or dynamism or whatever from last year’s team.

          • Sharks9 says:

            Well I would count Pacioretty, Desharnais and White as being additions for this year as last year they weren’t full time members of the team and this year they will be.

            25 before 14

    • ed lopaz says:

      It does not take a Joonas Nattinen for the Habs to start winning face offs.

      It takes an athlete of NHL caliber who is committed to learning the skill.

      its like penalty killing – it takes hard work, dedication, and practice.

      the fact that Gomez or Plekanec are not good face off centers is very puzzling.

      I think Plekanec will become better and better at it as he becomes a veteran.

      Gomez – I have no explanation for Gomez.

      Habs hockey is “smart” hockey – we play 5 man defence, not just 2 – we move up the ice as a 5 man unit, we back check with 5.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        We had a killer face off guy, Joe Juneau a few years ago. He’s not dead. He’s working with kids in Northern Quebec. The NFL has specialty coaches for everything, why can’t we?

        By the way. My kid is EIGHT. He’s a center. He has an ex NHL face-off and shooting coach. I am paying for it privately. If a regular guy like me can manage it, why the hell can’t the Habs?

        Just wondering out loud.

        • ed lopaz says:

          I have 3 teenagers, 2 are still playing competitive hockey.

          Enjoy your 8 year old – soon he will be shaving and driving like my boys!!

          teach him to skate, skate, skate,

          when all the dust settles, it is the truly great skaters that keep playing into college.

          and, joe juneau, was an RPI Grad, if I am not mistaken.
          very bright young man – and a very hard worker.

          Habs hockey is “smart” hockey – we play 5 man defence, not just 2 – we move up the ice as a 5 man unit, we back check with 5.

        • SeriousFan09 says:

          Why is Evgeni Malkin, a 2-time 100 point scorer and one of the 5 most talented forwards in the NHL not good in the circle? Mike RIchard is 50% in the dot on a good year. Eric Staal has never been 50% in the circle. Brad Richards? Another guy who hangs around in the 50% range. Stamkos is under 50% as well in the circle. Nicklas Backstrom only has one season over 50% too. Paul Gaustad (Who some here do pine over) is the only guy in Buffalo who can reliably take a faceoff.

          If it’s such an easy skill, why do so many teams seem to have an issue having more than 1 guy who goes over 50% in the dot reliably? People say Pittsburgh has bar none the best centre depth in the league, but until Mark Letestu took full-time duties with the Penguins this year, they have not had a year since the lockout with more than one guy winning 50% of his draws, hell for two years no one was over 50%, or close to it.

          Not all players can become strong faceoff men. Otherwise the league wouldn’t be rife with teams looking for a faceoff specialist.

          – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
          SF09 on Twitter

      • SeriousFan09 says:

        Actually it would help Ed, some guys just have a great instinct in the dot and others do not. It’s like any other skill in hockey, some guys are going to be better at it than others and some are just naturals.

        Doug Jarvis was acquired by the Habs specifically in the 1970s because they knew they could put him in the circle and he would beat anyone. Despite all the great talents on their team, they went out and got a faceoff guy. The Top faceoff guys in the NHL are a mix of the stars and the checkers as well. Some guys can score goals, some guys can school you in the dot.

        – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
        SF09 on Twitter

        • ed lopaz says:

          OK – I get your point.

          I agree with LA Loyalist as well.

          Bring in a coach like Jarvis and teach plekanec and Eller.

          Why didn`t we just keep Jarvis

          He is in Boston now I think!!!

  44. punkster says:

    Hyperbole Inside/Out here today.

    ***Subbang Baby!!!***

  45. fuhgawz says:

    all this “it’s the pre season talk”

    i have to say this … wasn’t it the pre season for the other teams that destroyed us as well?

  46. DCos says:

    All those lamenting Boucher’s departure, sobbing that “the Habs management just let him walk away”, obviously don’t understand what the situation was at the time.
    1. MTL just advanced to ECF. GMs don’t axe coaches of teams that just overachieved and reached the ECF. It just doesn’t happen. Not in Montreal. Not anywhere.
    2. Professional clubs don’t block the potential advancement of farm team or assitant coaches just to keep them around in case they’re needed a few years down the road. It just doesn’t happen. Not in Montreal. Not anywhere.

    Did the Habs management envision Boucher taking over for Martin at some point? Quite proabably. Would Boucher currently be a better coach to lead the Habs? Quite possibly. Could Habs management have done anything at the time to prevent Boucher from leaving? Not at all.

    ————————————————————————–Whining, sniveling, complaining, negative “fans” annoy me.

    • AK_PK_Usay says:

      You just showed how poor habs management was. They attributed the ECF final to JM and NOT to the freak play by Halak.

      Trust me, one of the reasons NA is having some financial problems is the old boys club where top managers to CEOs make flagrant mistakes and get no more than a tap on the hand and swapped around the big companies.

      • DCos says:

        Sorry bud, but I just don’t agree. Yes Halak was a main reason the Habs got to the ECF that year. Most likely the main reason. But there were many others. And one of the many other important reasons was the coaching of Martin. That was agreed upon by many hockey analysts. That postseason, JM outcoached his first and second round opponents.

        And again, regardless of how they got there, no team in Montreal’s position would have fired their coach. None.

        —–Whining, sniveling, complaining, negative “fans” annoy me.—–

    • Bripro says:

      Actually, the Canadiens organization, never one to hinder development, gave permission to the Lightning organization to speak with him. They could have blocked it.
      Rather than block it, they should have promoted him.

      • AK_PK_Usay says:

        Good remark.

        Now i also recall RDS saying that firing JM would have cost the team his salary anyway. Which is silly, as the team overpays Gomez millions but would stumble on the measly .5 JM would get.

        Management dropped the ball, much like how Gainey gambled Prices career by rushing him in the first year instead of entering the playoffs with the tried and tested Huet. He was also incapable of seeing how overrated Komisarek was and to trade him for something better while his value was so high.
        The team was so hot that year… Most GMs gamble big when a team is hot entering playoffs, he gambled Prices career…

        • LA Loyalist says:

          thanks for bringing up a lot of really bad memories 🙂 unfortunately you are right. Gainey blew it every way there was to blow it. Price, Laraque, Kovy, Saku – especially Price and Saku. And this from someone (me) who almost cried when Gainey was announced to take over the team. I hope he writes a book one day to explain. It’s possible there’s stuff we don’t know. I keep thinking I have closure, and then I don’t.

          Great post, though.

      • DCos says:

        True, they could have blocked it, if they wanted to be d*cks about it. However, I can’t see that strategy endearing a possible future coach to the organization, but may be that’s just me. And when was the last time we’ve seen any professional sports organization block somebody in that position? I sincerely doubt that the Habs organization is the only one “guilty” of such crimes.

        ——————————————————————-Whining, sniveling, complaining, negative “fans” annoy me.

        • Bripro says:

          Without even firing JM, there were enough openings as assistant coaches to offer Boucher a position behind the Habs’ bench. Perry Pearn was hired instead. I have nothing against him. He’s another Senators’ alumnus. But the way Boucher’s teams were tearing up the American League, I don’t understand why they let him slip away.

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        Exactly. Speak to Guy and tell him, buddy you’re next in line.

    • bleedhabs81 says:

      Not exactly the ECF but….

      Jersey fired Julien when he was in second place with a record 47-24-8 in his first season, two games before playoffs…. so…. I wouldn’t say it could NEVER happen.

      How about: the probability of it happening is the same as me hooking up with Mila Kunitz and Natalie Portman at the same time. I have done the math and it is not as staggering as you would think…. only a few gagillion to 1…. I like those odds!!

      Though, you are right. It was”his” system that “insulated” Halak which got them to ECF.

      • DCos says:

        Ha! Nice analogy!

        —Whining, sniveling, complaining, negative “fans” annoy me.—

        • bleedhabs81 says:

          I didn’t think it was possible to wear out a digital copy of a movie… but my mpeg4 version of the movie now skips and jumps during that scene in Black Swan.

          Good thing it wasn’t VHS.

          On a completely unrelated topic, does anyone know a good way to treat carpal tunnel syndrome? Specifically in the wrist…. completely unrelated

    • LA Loyalist says:

      Halak and hard work won that year, and certainly Martin deserves a fair share of credit. But it wasn’t any tactical or strategic brilliance of Martin’s that won it. He could have been rewarded “upstairs” as VP of something or other.

      But you’re right about the politics. We basically screwed ourselves.

  47. AK_PK_Usay says:

    Im seeing way too many people defending JM… I simply don’t understand that.

    Halak played so well during those playoffs that despite being out shot at a ratio of 2:1 we won games.

    Last year, Price played a TON of games, posting some great numbers, in the playoffs he had the 2nd best save percentage (behind Thomas, i didnt go to to check the stats, it was a comment from one of the commentators in a van boston game…)

    JM was outplayed with a hunged ottawa team… year after year after year…
    JM did nothing to warrant praise in florida
    JM gets credited for a sun scorching hot goalie, O Halak! one playoffs and for a good year by Price the next season

    JM names Gionta as captain, i thought players were supposed to vote on this… the only player that in our team deserved the C was Markov, and if not him Plekanec.

    JM lacks people skills, he’s like all these CEOs that are getting fired, a DINOSAUR… his time is long past, his skills spent.

    RDS keeps calling him the “leader, captain, etc” everything a coach in this league is not… shows that most of rds are as obsolete as him.

    A coach making 500k coaching players averaging his salary multiple times IS NOT their BOSS…

    Kirk Muller was unfairly traded as a player, and let go as a coach, if anyone had any thoughts that this is the same classy organization of old, forget them.

    • shiram says:

      Might as well stop watching the Habs today AK_PK_Usay, clearly there is no hope.

      If you don’t grok it, drokk it!

      • AK_PK_Usay says:

        I watched habs about 14 years ago when the only player that showed up was Koivu vs a super strong Phoenix team, and did not give up hope. So no, I DONT watch a team because they win, I like a team and go with it.


      • AK_PK_Usay says:

        Not to mention I think we have a good team, so despite JM we will have some great games, like the Chicago one last year which was Hockey Heaven.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        It’s not about hope. It’s about effort. And 2 shots in the 3rd period last night? That is absolutely freaking unbelievably embarrassing and pathetic and I don’t know why you guys aren’t commenting on it.

        These guys are fighting for jobs? Really? Have yet to see it.

        0-6? When do we worry when the season starts? 0-5 will be serious, because the east is always tight and other teams have IMPROVED. Gotten better. Beefed up.

        I was thinking to give it at least a month, but I don’t think we have that kind of luxury.

    • habstrinifan says:

      ” JM was outplayed with a hunged ottawa team..

      I’ll take your word for it.

      RE JM .. I am with you all the way.

      • AK_PK_Usay says:

        Last night, Boucher got his 1st line vs our 3rd for most of the game, i call that being outplayed too…

        • Chrisadiens says:

          I could be wrong, but maybe JM wanted to see what his young 3rd line could do, since it’s preseason?

          Also, I always thought that’s how JM liked to do it. Shut down 3rd line VS opposing team’s 1st line.

          Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

        • habstrinifan says:

          I think you mis-read my post. I was trying to be a smart-alec re your typo ‘hunged Ottawa team”.

          And as I think I said above, I am with you al the way in any disdain fro JM as a coach. And I live in Ottawa so I was here for that series against Toronto.

  48. verticalj says:

    I don’t get what the big deal is with doing poorly in the pre-season. I’m sure it would be nice to have a perfect or even winning record, but it isn’t important.

    Whether the habs are a great, average or a poor team this year the pre-season will most likely not be mentioned at all come playoff time.

    Let the guys play, try out new things, build chemistry and most importantly for preseason, let Geoff collect that sweet, sweet money!

  49. Chrisadiens says:

    Guys, really? It is preseason. I know the team looked horrible last night, but it’s only preseason. Goaltenders break in new pads, skaters break in skates, players don’t give a full effort. It is preseason. We shouldn’t throw in the towel already.

    Now if we still suck after 5 games, I’ll join in on this madness….

    Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

  50. homerbowen says:

    Very disappointed with the team so far. While I agree it’s only pre-season it’s also only pre-season for the other teams as well.
    We lacked offense for the past few years and I see nothing on the roster to brighten my day. The defense has left the goalies out to dry and our backup looks terrible. We spent much of last night and for the most part of all our other games picking ourselves off the ice. Why…because we lack size and grit compared to our opponents. For the past few years we played like pussies and I see nothing to change that this year. We won one game in a shot out against the teams picked to come dead last….no size, no grit and no heart! Pussy Team.

  51. Woodman91 says:

    Lol I can’t believe the amount of crap Budji is already taking and people saying “he is the worst signing PG has made yet”… He’s had two bad PREseason games! I’m guessing it’s the same people who wanted to throw Carey Price under the bus last season after his stinker performance in the preseason?. RELAX people, there’s a reason he is our backup goalie and I guarantee he rounds into form and will be a much better backup then Alex Auld was.

    • HardHabits says:

      WTF is up with all these new and desperate pro-Hab trolls all of a sudden? At least the regular anti-Hab trolls keep with their current accounts (until banned at any rate).

      Rookies need to earn their respect here. If you want to dis the HIO posters get behind PT. He has that market cornered.

      • RGM says:

        The nerve of a Habs fan defending a player from excessive attacks. Why they oughta make a special website just for them so that they can talk about the Habs without dealing with all the negativity.

        GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is our year!

      • DCos says:

        They are probably mostly avid HIO readers but infrequent posters who are just tiring of the same negative drivel posted multiple daily by the same users. Just a guess.
        ————————————————————————–Whining, sniveling, complaining, negative “fans” annoy me.

        • Bripro says:

          Why are you generalizing?
          Sounds like “Whining, sniveling, complaining, and negativity” to me.

          • DCos says:

            I don’t think anywhere in my post was I whining, sniveling or complaining..just offering HH a possibility as why there were some “new and desparate pro-Hab trolls” posting. I know that’s why I’m posting 🙂

            ——————————————————————-Whining, sniveling, complaining, negative “fans” annoy me.

  52. HardHabits says:

    Welcome to Blowtown

    Population: Habs

  53. SeriousFan09 says:

    By the way folks, there are coachs I would prefer to be in charge of Montreal. I will not name them as it’s pointless, JM is in charge and until there is real cause for him to be removed I’m not going to start imaging fantasy replacements for him.

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
    SF09 on Twitter

    • HardHabits says:

      I recommend you imagine that the Canadiens had a different kind of Game 7 against Boston last year…

    • 24moreCups says:

      How many coaches that speak French that would be available are there?

      I don’t really like JM, I thank him for that magical run we had and the fun it was but I don’t see that happening again with him as head coach.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      I really can’t imagine anyone getting anything more out of this group of players than Martin.
      Without a superstar on the team and with many devastating injuries the guy has led us to victory against the Pittsburgh Penguins, Washington Capitals and within a goal, with a depleted roster, of beating last year’s Stanley Cup Champions.

      Martin is the last person you’d want to look at after a loss.

  54. Philly-Poo says:

    Mio, Boone, Stubbs, and anyone else affiliated with the running/writing of this site,
    On behalf of everyone else who visits here regularly, thank you for posting the articles you write for The Gazette on a separate site for viewing for us Habs fans. Seriously much appreciated.


  55. shiram says:

    I’m surprised no one is talking about or blaming the new assistants, where are the bring Muller back chants?

    If you don’t grok it, drokk it!

  56. Based on 7 preseason games, I think it’s fair to say that the commentariat is in mid-season trolling form. And the negative Nancy whiners are already primed for the playoffs.

  57. ed lopaz says:

    I watched the interview with Boucher last night on Antichambre.

    Boucher is simply brilliant – no other way to describe him.

    He is explaining his 3 levels of `leadership“, and how different players will lead in different ways;

    and how leadership from the GM, to the coach, to the leaders in the room, are the key to the teams success.

    how they share values, work ethic, and how they work together to execute the game plan.

    how work ethic must include enthusiasm for the job

    his ability to communicate is what sets him apart.

    how clearly he makes himself understood.

    how easily someone can listen to what he says, and then take the proper “action“ as he calls it.

    Boucher is what I believe a pro coach should be in the year 2011.

    He is a coach, a teacher, a mentor, a leader.

    Whether Tampa wins or not, they have themselves one of the true great coaches in the NHL.

    Habs hockey is “smart” hockey – we play 5 man defence, not just 2 – we move up the ice as a 5 man unit, we back check with 5.

    • huge_polar_bear says:

      I saw the interview last night as well, and came away with a tremendous sense of loss. This man was once in our organization and instead of identifying a future up and coming head coach and doing everything possible to keep him in their employement, the Habs let him just walk away.

      Sad, just sad.

      • J_P says:

        Especially because we let him walk to keep a dinosaur whos well past his best before date.

        You’re dealing with multi-millionaire players on guaranteed contracts, you almost need to be master in psychology to keep them motivated these days.

        • Braidan says:

          Mario Tremblay* 1995–1997
          Alain Vigneault 1997–2000
          Michel Therrien 2000–2003
          Claude Julien 2003–2006
          Bob Gainey[e] 2006 -2009
          Guy Carbonneau*
          Bob Gainey[e] 2009
          Jacques Martin 2009-

          Am I the only one who remembers the fanbase SCREAMING for an experienced coach and for the Habs to stop hiring first year coaches?
          Then they hire JM who has a great year, but still not good enough, now the fans want the Habs to go back to a first year coach again. And when Boucher went to TBL the thinking was that he would learn there and then come back here……

          No wonder Hab fans have a bad rep

      • Philly-Poo says:

        I don’t know if this will comfort you, or help send you to a cliff somewhere quicker, but… As I recall, The Canadiens just signed JM to a new contract, and were/are devoted to give him a solid try, especially considering until they hired JM, the last coach with any NHL coaching experience for the Habs was Jacques Demers… Anyways, they didn’t so much let Boucher “walk away”, as they gave him an opportunity. As an organization they recognized that they were going to run with JM for a bit, especially since they added to his contract. A few NHL teams were interested in Boucher, and rather than refuse their right to court him and vice versa, they allowed him to look at other career moves. They knew that he would most likely find a job elsewhere, but, rather than keep him at a level that he had already mastered, they gave him a chance to succeed elsewhere, and that he has, I’d say. He does have one hell of a team in TB, but, I think he would have done well anywhere. It was a classy move by The Canadiens, if unfortunate, since I like the Guy Boucher way… He did so well in Hamilton working with a lot of the guys who broke out from the AHL last season…
        Looking at some of the coaches that we have had, chewed, and spit out like some greasy gristle that have gone on to success, and just in the last 10-15 years… Therrien (cup w/Pits) Julien (cup w/Bos) Vigneault (close but no cigar w/Van)… Admittedly, I was happy to see Vigneault and Therrien to get the boot, but, I liked/like Julien…

    • punkster says:

      But can he walk on water?

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

      • ed lopaz says:

        you should watch the interview it is available on the RDS web site.

        • punkster says:

          I did and he most definitely seems a clear, concise and focused individual. That he is “one of the true great coaches in the NHL” is something that will take years to determine. If he ends his career with a winning record, a Cup or two and some Jack Adams awards here and there then he may be in the running.

          He is, today, a minor league coach with a one year NHL record under his belt. Visions of grandeur seem to swim in the heads of his fans and acolytes.

          ***Subbang Baby!!!***

          • ed lopaz says:

            Boucher is no longer a `minor league coach“, he is an NHL coach with a great season under his belt.

            “visions of grandeur“: it is more like an enthusiasm that becomes contagious.

            If Boucher was coaching the Habs, you, Serious Fan, and many others on this site, would be his biggest supporters

            Habs hockey is “smart” hockey – we play 5 man defence, not just 2 – we move up the ice as a 5 man unit, we back check with 5.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        Sure, if it’s frozen.

    • Sakus Evil Twin says:

      A very big +1

      Guy Boucher has evolved clearly as manager at every level – and anyone who has objectives and a team to make it happen can learn from him.

      The key here is that he is adaptable, whether it be on a human, personal level, or a tactical, strategic one,. He appears to be able to suss out the strengths and weaknesses of his team and to be able to drive the best of them through active and clear communication.

      I sincerely hope that the Habs top brass have a plan for him.

      Of course, until that time is realised, screw him 🙂

      No answers, just opinions. Bite me. Och.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        Boucher adjusts to the players he has. As coaches like Pat Burns and Scotty did.

        Martin tries to break his players to a mold, like mules. He’s a failed football defense coach who thinks the “prevent” will win if he can just get his dang mules to execute.

        And when it comes to execution – I’m for it.

    • rogieshan says:

      Boucher may be brilliant in many ways, but it doesn’t necessarily mean his approach would work with every individual/team. Martin may lack the communication skills or is more rigid, but it doesn’t mean his message isn’t understood or that he isn’t a good coach, teacher, mentor, and leader. Michel Bergeron was considered to have all those qualities when he coached, yet it didn’t always register and never once translated into a championship. Boucher has had a strong run so far, and his players are responding, but let’s see how he and the team react when they face their first real adversity (e.g. Stamkos or Roloson getting hurt.). Then, I might agree with you 100%.

  58. DEANDALLEY says:

    The point is: MARTIN SUCKS!

  59. J_P says:

    Anyone think the habs have the cap space and assets to be a player in the Shea Weber sweepstakes? If he was going to sign a long-term extension in Nashville, I’m inclined to think he would have done so by now, so he will almost certainly be traded. The return nashville could get for him would be huge for that organization.

    Obviously its a pipe-dream. With PK and Carey due for huge raises, and markov signed for another three years, would it even be possible to fit him in? Thoughts?

  60. LA Loyalist says:

    Horrible realisation:

    The other teams will start using their good players when the season starts.

    What will we do?

  61. Propwash says:

    I guess Rollie playing a heckuva game last night had nothing to do with the loss…

  62. SmartDog says:

    1. Martin or Boucher?
    2. Budaj or Auld?
    3. Hamrlik or Diaz?
    4. Cole (at 5mil) or Pouliot (at 2 mil)?
    5. Moen or Youppi?


    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • shiram says:

      Why the wrong figures of salary for Pouliot and Cole?

      If you don’t grok it, drokk it!

    • avatar_58 says:

      1 – meh, boucher is overrated. I’m not a martin fan but he did lead the team to the ECF
      2 – Who else is available? Anyone? Bueller?
      3 – Silly question as Diaz is not replacing Hamr. My opinion is Hamr or Campoli since that’s closer to a replacement (and my answer is Hamr)
      4 – Cole, no contest. The games he’s played with the top line have shown flashes of what’s to come – energy and fast shooting
      5 – MAB

    • J_P says:

      1. Boucher, but I didnt like the Martin hire from the first minute he was hired

      2. Budaj. He has more upside, and I dont judge players based on pre-season.

      3. Anything but the Hammer. For the first half of last season I could have sworn he was playing drunk every night.

      4. Cole in a heartbeat. Cole is surpringly fast for his size. Pouliot is lanky for his size, and cant seem to do the most basic thing required to play ice hockey: Stay on his skates.

      5. Youppi. Moen has been absolutely useless since acquired. Doesnt fight (or fight well when he does), doesnt hit, doesn’t score. At least Youppi would provide comic relief. All kidding aside, there has to be a better alternative to Travis Moen.

    • LA Loyalist says:

      1. Boucher – or his dog
      2. Budaj or Auld? Doesn’t matter, neither can carry the load if needed
      3. Loved Hammer, thanks! But time to move on. Diaz
      4. Cole. A proven power forward. Good signing. We’re not deep enough anywhere to spend more time on a project player like Poo. Detroit, Boston, Van – yeah, but not us.
      5. I like Youppi. Memories of Expos nice baseball field before the built the Olympic disaster. Used to watch Jeff Reardon and Gary Carter there. It was fun.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      1. Boucher took a team that got a lottery the previous year all the way to game 7 of the ECF finals. He’s young and smart, has won everywhere he has gone, and knows hos to talk to players. Martin plays dull try not to lose hockey.

      2. They are both bad.

      3. Right now: Diaz for the potential.

      4. Cole.

      5. Moen in a Youppi costume.

    • DCos says:

      2. Same
      3. Bad comparison question. Diaz was signed as a depth/7th def while Hammer was a top 4….That being said, I’ll take Diaz @ under a mil vs. Hammer @ 3.5
      4. Cole @ 4.5 all day every day
      5. Youppi
      Whining, sniveling, complaining, negative “fans” annoy me.

    • Habitant in Surrey says:

      …5 = Youppi
      …4 = Cole
      …3 = Hamrlik
      …2 = Auld
      …1 = BOUCHER !!! (silly to even ask)
      Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      2. Does it matter? Nobody wants/wanted either of them in nets.
      3. I’ll take whichever one doesn’t play like a zombie by March.
      4. Cole is at 4.5, Pouliot is at 1.1 million and Cole has this wonderful, outstanding, amazing ability to not fall down for no reason when he skates.
      5. Moen

      – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
      SF09 on Twitter

  63. Timo says:

    The sad part is there is nothing to really to look forward to for the next 2 seasons at least. And unless PG is gone, it is almost a guarantee that JM will be back as a coach for another 3-4 year stint. We will be making playoffs, saying that we came within a goal of eliminating stanley cup champs, but Habs will not win anything with the vegan and the count running this team.

    • shiram says:

      Aww come on Time you can better than that! like your last bit there, you should have gone : “but Habs will not win anything with the vegan and the count ruIning this team.”

      Much more abrasive!

      If you don’t grok it, drokk it!

    • SmartDog says:

      JM won’t be back.

      They’ll be looking for another Boucher. I laugh at everyone who said you couldn’t toss out Martin and all his Wins for a green coach like Boucher. I think they’re the same people who said Gomez was a great acquisition and that SK and Lats wouldn’t amount to anything.

      Oh wait a minute, I’m talking about Gauthier again aren’t I?

      The old guard has to fall, and will. It sucks to see smarter, younger leadership while the Habs brass pretends the boat isn’t even rocking, let alone slowly sinking.

      Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

      • so speaking of ivory towers, did ya get the cherubs you were hoppin to match that rug?

        • SmartDog says:

          I’m still waitin’ for them to be delivered.

          I think the truck came but I was out back by the pool eatin’ ice cream offa Scarlett Johansson’s bare belly. And yes – the carpet DOES match the drapes.

          Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

          • Bripro says:

            And then the alarm rang, and you woke up.
            Because if you have the opportunity to eat off of SJ’s belly, screw the Summit. We’re all coming to your place, Rob.

      • avatar_58 says:

        Pardon me but what has Lats or SK won? Yeah that’s right

        As for another Boucher my bets on Kirk Muller. Unfortunately someone else will grab him once he does well in the AHL

        • SmartDog says:

          What did they win?
          They won the LOTTERY when they left Montreal – and went to teams that would put the right effort into them.

          Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

      • LA Loyalist says:

        It just struck me that Habs are kind of like boiling a lobster starting with cold water. The lobster thinks everything is fine, then suddenly, it isn’t.

        We once bought a bunch of live lobsters at that weird Warshaws (?) grocery store on St. Laurent for new years, and having nowhere to put them, just put them in the bath tub – then hours later when the female invitees started showing up, and wanted the bathroom to powder their noses, we would hear horrified shreeks as they discovered the little companions (2 pounders are the sweetest, you don’t want a big lobster, they are too old and tough).

        It was one of the funniest things we ever did. Try it.

        Habs had a killer hockey team back then. Pat Burns was the coach. We had this goalie, St. Patrick… sigh…

      • SeriousFan09 says:

        Latendresse is a self-involved, self-entitled punk. He was rubbish on the ice and had no pride in the CH. We were and always will be well rid of him.

        – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
        SF09 on Twitter

    • G-Man says:

      Kreskin II, the sequel. You know tomorrow night’s 6/49 numbers, too?
      For everything and everyone, there is a first time. Else Vancouver and all those other teams might as well not even be in the league, right?

    • The Dude says:

      No ,the sad part is no Stanley Cup for the next 10 years…………….

    • DCos says:


      Whining, sniveling, complaining, negative “fans” annoy me.

  64. savethepuck says:

    I hope we blow out Tampa tomorrow night. Not because it will have anything to do with how the Habs do this regular season or the upcoming play-offs in 2012, but hopefully it will get rid of the ridiculous hard on too many of you on here have for Guy Boucher. It’s getting nauseating listening to this crap over and over again.
    Re Budaj: Who cares, give it some time.
    The first period, he wasn’t busy, and allowed 2 goals. The first was the result of a bad rebound, but that was because the puck was deflected, so I couldn’t blame him for that goal. The 2nd goal was a result of DD getting lost in his own end and backing into him totally screening him. Can’t blame him on that 1 either. By far his worst period was the 2nd, that’s when he was fighting the puck the most and not knowing where the puck was. I think in the 2nd he was still shaken from what happened in the 1st and had issues with his conficence. I thought he settled down in the 3rd. I have never liked the guy, but I honestly think that after riding the pines for a while, working on some things in practice, and getting a couple road starts against sub par teams with no pressure on him, he’ll gain some confidence and do better for the next time he gets a start at the Bell.

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

  65. el heffe says:

    In the immortal words of Carey Price “just chill out” on the Budaj front. It’s only pre-season folks. Budaj will be just fine. He wasn’t made the starter (at times) for the Avs for nothing. The guy can play. Yes he’s rusty but remember how bad Carey looked last pre-season. It will all be ok.

    Charge it to the Underhill’s.

  66. AntoineSabourin says:

    Peter Budaj?

    More like Peter Bad Guy

  67. Timo says:

    TSN reporting 8 years / 56 Mil for Daughty. Verbal agreement so far but holy smokes.

    • shiram says:

      So he was basically throwing a issy fit for about 1.6 million on a total of 56 millions?

      If you don’t grok it, drokk it!

      • Bripro says:

        Yep! For $200k / year. Pretty sad. He must do wonders for the dressing room chemistry.

      • savethepuck says:

        It wasn’t him wanting the extra 200K that was holding up the deal. I think he was willing to take the 6.8 mil on a shorter term that wouldn’t carry into his UFA years. The Kings wanted long term, he wanted shorter term. Both sides budged, he gave them their term and they gave him his money.

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

      • LA Loyalist says:

        He wanted more than Kopitar. They offered the same, which I thought was wise. Term has other considerations that make it not so personal, i.e. what other contracts are coming due when…

        Gonna be a great dressing room here in LA. And the fact that Kings management blinked. So much for their credibility now.

        I’m at the Kings practice rink all weekend, if I hear any juice I will share.

  68. SeriousFan09 says:

    Folks, let us imagine for a moment:

    Let us imagine the Canadiens had a different kind of Game 7 against Boston last year. Imagine the Canadiens instead of coming back from being down 2-0 and 3-2 to force overtime, imagine they did not score a single goal and were shut out. Imagine they mustered a mere 24 shots on net. Imagine they did not draw a single penalty over 60 minutes.

    Who here would stand up and speak for Jacques Martin under that circumstance when his team blew it in the most important game of the year? Because that’s what Guy Boucher’s team did.

    I’m just saying…

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
    SF09 on Twitter

    • el heffe says:

      very very well said!

      Charge it to the Underhill’s.

    • HardHabits says:

      You might as well imagine that the Habs won the Stanley Cup.

      Hockey, not unlike football, is often a game of inches. I am tired of excuses. However you dice and slice it the Bolts have a younger more dynamic coach and a younger more dynamic team.

      Blame Lalime all you want. JM hasn’t won anything of significance as a coach other than more regular season games than he’s lost.

      • Timo says:

        I was going to say something to this effect but you said it better, HH. You have a way with words.

      • SeriousFan09 says:

        I’m not making excuses, I am putting an example right up in front of everyone asking where the was all this dynamic energy and coaching intensity in the most important game of Boucher’s career. If we can judge JM as a terrible coach because of pre-season results, I will choose to judge Guy Boucher on what was the biggest game of the year for the TBL.

        TBL have no defensive future aside from Hedman, who’s goingt o have to wear his duty like Markov did as he enters his prime years and no real long-term goaltending answer since Roloson’s about to turn 42. They will never win the Stanley Cup with what they have in nets and the back end.

        – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
        SF09 on Twitter

        • Timo says:

          He still got his team further than JM did. As for defensive future… i assume you are implying Habs have a better one? Lessee… other than PK – Markov and Gorges are both one hit or a bad fall away from calling it a career. Gill and Spacek can hardly be considered a future. Emelin is a huge question mark and there is nothing that I saw from him indicated he will be the stud everyone (you) expect him to be. That leaves us with… umm… Diaz, Weber, Campoli… and some other no names. Yep, other than PK, there is some future we have.

          • SeriousFan09 says:

            And Montreal took the road TBL did last year to the ECF, but they didn’t have the great luxury of having to play Pittsburgh minus Crosby and Malkin and that still took TB 7 games to get it done.

            Montreal does have the stronger defensive depth how do I know that? Oh I do research instead of coming up with typically unimaginative remarks any chronic malcontent who visits here could dream up. TBL was actually after Diaz (But I’m sure this was a clever distraction ploy by Yzerman to make PG sign a lousy player) for a bit, but he chose Montreal. Yemelin is well thought for his upside of and using his first few games on NA ice to determine his long-term potential is shortsighted but typical amongst Habs fans. Nathan Beaulieu, Jarred Tinordi, Darren Dietz, Morgan Ellis, Mac Bennett, Greg Pateryn, Brendon Nash are all within the conversation as well for what we call FUTURE depth. That is, what happens down the line when those over-30 defencemen on TBL are all declining and Montreal’s adding their top prospects to compliment the play of PK Subban.

            – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
            SF09 on Twitter

          • LA Loyalist says:

            We do have Tinordi in a couple of years, and I personally think Emelin will be fine, it’s a big adjustment to the smaller ice when you’re a D.

            Not many teams have more than one super stud D, if Markov and Gorges hold up we are ok. If they don’t, PK is going put on a lot of miles.

        • Habitant in Surrey says:

          …agree on everything You are saying about Our future prospects, but Your credibility to analyse the vast difference between Boucher and Martin is quite suspect Robert

          Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

    • HardHabits says:

      Here’s what I don’t want to see happen: Habs finish around 15th over-all, barely make the play-offs, don’t make the finals, pick another defense man at the draft with their first pick (which will be in the 2nd round because they’ll have traded their 1st round pick for a panic mode last minute rental just so they can squeak into the play-offs), rinse, repeat ad nauseum.

      • Timo says:

        Habs need a change in management and coaching department.

        • Bripro says:

          You’re right there.
          Montreal’s worst move last year was to allow Boucher to talk to Tampa instead of letting JM go and promote Boucher instead.
          That’s my opinion.
          Now, it’s time to bring Carbo back!

      • LA Loyalist says:

        Which if we’d signed Wiz we could have TRADED him next March to someone desperate in exchange for SOMEONE WHO KNOWS WHERE THE FREAKING NET IS.

        2 shots in the 3rd last night? That’s pathetic, and for everything else there’s Mastercard.

    • The Dude says:

      Apples and oranges…Boucher first year as an NHL coach.What’s Martin excuse?

    • zak says:

      Didn’t happen. Imagine that

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      How about this scenario?

      Imagine that a team goes into games 5, 6 and 7 against the Washington Capitals, and in all three games are completely outplayed, and outshot two to one!

      Somehow that team’s keeper is on fire and he just stops everything, and the team goes on to steal the series.

      Would you bring this up for the next two years as proof that that team’s coach was actually a very good coach?

    • huge_polar_bear says:

      Let us imagine for a moment that I am dating Megan Fox…

      This has nothing to do with your post other then if we are in this dream world of your, I chose this to waste my time day dreaming about…

    • ed lopaz says:

      to Serious Fan 09,

      that is total freakin b.s. and you know it.

      I remember about 2 years ago, when Boucher was still in Hamilton, you and I exchanging posts and you posting how you hoped that Boucher would take over the Habs.

      For you to come on here now and pretend like Boucher does not deserve our respect, and to ridicule what Boucher accomplished in his FIRST NHL SEASON,

      is completely unprofessional, and you know it.

      total B.S. and shocking coming from a guy like you who otherwise deserves all of our respect around here.

      Habs hockey is “smart” hockey – we play 5 man defence, not just 2 – we move up the ice as a 5 man unit, we back check with 5.

      • SeriousFan09 says:

        I am applying a standard Ed. People use tiny examples every day of what makes Jacques Martin the worst coach since Mario Tremblay to step behind the bench, but if Guy Boucher makes a critical mistake like I don’t know, having his team be doormats in a Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals, it’s OK. Doesn’t mean anything, but if the Habs can’t score goals in the pre-season well hell, end of the world and JM breaks their wills to live.

        I had designs on Boucher being the head coach of Montreal, but over a longer timeframe. There was no justification for firing JM under the circumstances and I don’t hate Boucher, I hate how he’s been hyped up into Scotty Bowman 2.0 and it’s the worst decision in team history he’s not the head coach right now.

        – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
        SF09 on Twitter

    • Braidan says:

      Let us imagine that after years of giving first year coaches a shot and all the hoopla about getting a coach with experience we had gone back to ANOTHER first year coach after finally having an experienced coach that got us deep in the finals.

      If the Habs had hired Boucher after the year JM had then feces would have hit the ventilation had Boucher not succeeded.

      The Habs…..damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

  69. Bripro says:

    …..and in this corner, weighing in at 6’0″, 200 lbs, here he is
    the human version of Swiss Cheese, the skating colander, the human sieve, the over-paid-under-performing……
    Peeeter Boooooooodaj!

  70. j2w4habs25 says:

    any word on Brendan Gallagher if he got cut? hope to find out soon 😛

    Carey Price #31

    • Kooch7800 says:

      I don’t think there will be cuts today. I hope they send him back to Junior and don’t rush him to the NHL

      • j2w4habs25 says:

        I hope they use him just for acouple games this year. He does seem pretty good.

        Carey Price #31

        • Kooch7800 says:

          No doubt the kid is good I agree. I just don’t want to see what has happened to some of our other prospects being brought up too early.

          In saying that a couple of games before going back to Junior might be ok. My only issue is having him in the bottom six playing against a team like Toronto or Winnipeg they will both be very physical games.

          I want to see him with the World Juniors this year. Fingers crossed

  71. habbsy says:

    I will hold back judgement as the real Habs team has not played yet, but please send Budaj back from whence he came.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Last night was pretty bloody close to our starting line up. They didn’t look good. I am not hitting the panic button but I will admit I was surprised at really how bad they did look

      • petefleet says:

        I don’t agree with that assessment. Budaj was awfull again. Cammy, Pleks nad Gallagher missed some serious scoring chances. The score could have been much closer, maybe even a win if Budaj hadn’t sh*t to bed again.

        I didn’t say you were lying, I said I don’t believe you.

        ***Habs Forever***

        • Kooch7800 says:

          really….how many goals did we score last night? How many goals have we scored all preseason? 14 total. that is pathetic

          Shoulda, coulda woulda don’t count on chances. Hence why Gallagher will be sent back to Junior. Great determination and chances but not a lot of actual points

          PD could have played great and let in one goal all game. We still didn’t score and didn’t look good. Tampa dominated the majority of the play as well looking faster and hungrier than the habs and we had pretty close to a full line up

          • petefleet says:

            Agreed to some extent. TB also missed some good chances. That said, if the team gets behind on soft goals early, it’s almost a forgone conclusion that you will lose the game. The stats on it are very lopsided. Add to that that they haven’t played together as a group until last night…..the glass is half full for me.

            I didn’t say you were lying, I said I don’t believe you.

            ***Habs Forever***

        • HabFanSince72 says:

          Two shots on goal in the final period.

      • Timo says:

        WHy were you surprised? Last night I saw hockey that I saw from the Habs on the most nights last season. I was not surprised at all. Disappointed that the team hasn’t gotten any better, but not surprised.

  72. VintageFan says:

    There is no shortage of player talent on this team. NO direction from management, however. Boivin’s “best choice” , Pierre (the ghost) Gauthier, blew a bundle on Budaj, who is giving the same sort of performance that left him unsigned in Colorado.
    NHL Hockey changed radically after the lockout. Jacques Martin didn’t. And his team shows it, especially when they play against the new attack-style teams
    IMO there are two choices: Martin changes or change Martin

  73. HabsFanMTL says:

    DD is too small for this league, smaller than st.Louis. Did u see how easy it is to push DD off the puck last night? i’m tired fo this small but fast attitude our management has

    • habs03 says:

      DD problem isn’t that he is small but he isn’t strong. Look at St. Louis and Gionta, both are small but strong. Size isn’t an issue stop making excuses. Heck if you see Gionta arm’s in interviews he has some guns!

  74. petefleet says:

    I wouldn’t normally throw anyone under the bus this early in the season but I feel I have to. Of all the moves PG has made so far as GM, the Budaj deal is most definately the worst. If his performances so far are any indication of what the rest of his season is going to look like, playoffs are just a dream. PG got rid of Auld for what? Nothing. From what I’ve seen to date, Auld would definately be a class above Budaj. Now, my bold prediction. If Budaj struggles in his first 5 starts, PG will be looking to Hamilton for some relief. Lawson looked good to me, try him PG.

    I didn’t say you were lying, I said I don’t believe you.

    ***Habs Forever***

  75. “don’t hold your breath awaiting an update from the team.”

    No, but Marinaro should get the scoop before everyone else.

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