Game 21: Canadiens breeze 4-1 over Isles

Canadiens’ Steve Bégin is congratulated by linemate Mathieu Dandenault after having scored his second goal of tonight’s game.
Ray Stubblebine, Reuters

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Maybe the change of scenery helped the Canadiens.

After a seemingly interminable stretch of seeing the same uniforms, the Habs found Uniondale, N.Y., to their liking tonight, beating the New York Islanders 4-1 on the strength of a two-goal performance by – wait for it – Steve Bégin.

The Canadiens improved their record to 12-6-3, while the Islanders dropped to 11-7-0.

Habs goalie Cristobal Huet, who made 44 saves, lost his bid for a shutout with 3:50 left in the game when he was beaten by Mike Comrie.

The ice was still wet at 56 seconds when the Canadiens got on the board, Bégin fed from behind the net by Mathieu Dandenault, who had done some good work to come up with the puck.

Bryan Smolinski earned the second assist on the goal, Bégin firing one from the faceoff circle to the right of Islanders goalie Rick DiPietro for his second goal of the season.

The Habs held a 13-12 edge in first-period shots.

Playing in his hometown, before 66 family members and friends at the Nassau Coliseum, Christopher Higgins scored his first road goal of the season and eighth of the year at 6:14 of the second on a fine individual effort, sweeping in across DiPietro’s crease and stuffing the puck over the Isles goalie. You want happy? Check out Higgins here.

Higgins had been sent away with a beautiful pass from the Canadiens end into the offensive side of centre by defenceman Roman Hamrlik, who played a game-high 25:20 and finished the night at +2, and scored with a Habs power play expired by one second.

Bégin quickly potted his second of the night just over two minutes later, bobbling on the stickhandle – he joked on RDS after the period that it was a fake – then scooping up the puck and whipping a wrister past DiIPietro, who was totally surprised by the shot.

Tomas Plekanec then made it 4-0 at 13:22, winning a power-play draw back to the point to Patrice Brisebois, then taking a perfect, lightning-quick cross-ice pass from Alex Kovalev, who’d been fed by Brisebois, to bury it past an increasingly porous DiPietro for his sixth of the season.

The Canadiens outshot their hosts 16-13 in the second for a 29-25 edge after 40 minutes.

It was an eventful night for defenceman Mike Komisarek, a Long Islander like Higgins. Komisarek was a physical presence all night long; he also had a spirited fight with Isles’ Brendan Witt midway through the second period, then drew a four-minute minor late in the period for high-sticking.

The Canadiens play the Sabres in back-to-back games this weekend: Friday in Buffalo and Saturday back at the Bell Centre.

 

A few pre-game statistics:

137 Comments

  1. StillattheMapes says:

    Nightmare. I love this comment. Spot on.

    Actually I think you are very close, but the PM ended up de facto calling it (karma) roles and responsibilities for DMs as accounting officers in the FeDAA. Real karma is obviously what we used to call (way back when) the things we either said aloud or murmured while convincing others (in my case females) to discard their clothes as we cast I-Ching sticks by candlelight to otherwise convince others (the same females)to discard their clothes for various purposes. It was always a circular argument (or discussion) anyways, sometimes successful, sometimes redundant, sometimes just not on.

    Meanwhile, the PM does not have any karma at all. None. Nor do most of his Ministers, though some are less cold or careering than others. It is just a game of course (always has been), but these days I wish they would not play so much monopoly with our (my) money.

    The PM could not have possibly invented karma (duh, oh really, but tell this to his communications people) or any of its context (would he could wish upon a star), though some c’s would debate that…. out of… regard and expediency. Most people do not confuse karma with charm, and in this case, there is no confusion. Karma-less and charm-less. And very difficult.

    Just a side-bar.

    Meanwhile, Carey Price has karma, and charm may come (he has already decided upon his very “calm” schtick), though I don’t care about that so much. Only that he wins. JT said it awhile ago and I agreed with him then in a silly runny discourse aided by adult beverages, which is why I am commenting here. It is just a feel. Price’s habs just play better than Huet’s Habs, and I mean no disrespect to Christobel whatsover, who is a very good goaltender. It is always about timing and about players, sometimes talent.

    It is just about, well, karma.

    No I cannot define this word… but I think in this context that Carey’s teammates feel pretty good in front of him. This is generally a good feeling in hockey, especially as a former defenceman. When you win at all levels, generally you keep winning up. It’s a reason to believe…..

  2. Chorske says:

    Roy left Montreal with his two middle fingers in the air. The guy is a huge competitor, but so was Mario Tremblay, and look what HIS coaching got us. That was an era when management made the mistake of thinking that heart and passion won you hockey games. It helps, but talent and focus and discipline win championships. I feel way more secure with Bob Gainey in charge, with his almost Vulcan-like calm, than with Houle/Tremblay and their constant state of emotional upheaval. I think Roy has a lot of growing up to do before he could ever coach at the NHL level. This is a guy who tore a door off its hinges during a fight with his wife, for chrissakes. We need THAT kind of passion like a hole in the head.

    Remember the old joke, when someone told Patrick Roy: there’s no “i” in “team”, and he replied, yeah, but there is one in “equipe”? 😉

  3. Sulemaan says:

    That comment made me laugh out loud n_49.

  4. cautiousoptimist says:

    And shot lightning out of his nether-regions.

  5. krob1000 says:

    Yikes…..not the Genetic Chemistry thing again.
    We better trade Koivu I guess as we have no other Finns…or I guess we could trade for two….or is any where in Scandinavia o.k. as far as your genetic chemistry theory. Wait ……… we could call up Lahti and then we only need one.

    I’m not sure exactly what has been proven but I think it is probably best unsaid.

  6. HAB-PROFESSOR says:

    It would be folly for Carb to mess with the chemistry of our #1 line: Kovy/Pleks/Kostisyn at this point…

    Previously I wrote of the Genetic Chemistry of this combination and have been proven correct.

    I think the question is Ryder/Koivu/?????…bulldog kostisyn?

    Regardless, after tonight we’ll be able to make a more educated decision on the capabilities of Higgins….where he is going.

  7. coutNY says:

    AS stated earlier with a KOVY/KOIVU/RYDER line up who do you move to Left wing? With both being a right handed shot, why hinder Kovy who is our top scorer or put Ryder into a position who is already finding difficulties in his natural position?

    See earlier post (11/21/2007 – 15:30) for couple more reasons why Carbo might not to go that route…

  8. HAB-PROFESSOR says:

    On Higgins and Ryder….

    I’m glad to read that the “HIGGINS ENIGMA” has finally brewed to the surface… a point that the professor has brought out in the past. (actually the split second I observed the 2007 play of Higgins)

    HIGGINS should be demoted….even if its for a few shifts like Ryder was.

    His erratic stickhandling is detrimental to the precision needed on the top 2 lines. His speed and forecheck are excellent attributes for the 3rd or 4th line, but his lack of finesse passing or finishing is why he needs to be sent down…(to the 3rd or 4th)

    Now if he was finesse passing and finishing then he is ABSOLUTELY #1 MATERIAL….the argument is not that he has 7 goals, but he should have about 17 goals at this point….his 2 on 0 with Koivu the other night was a nightmare for a professional 1st liner.

    Ryder is finally finding a medium between his new found stickhandling abilities (he is stickhandling more than he ever has in the first two years on the team) and regaining his sniper ability..He is a TRIGGER MAN who will work well with Koivu or Kovalev who are master passers.

    Only Higs can improve on Higs…and I’d bet tonight is when it happens. Higs will be playing in front of 30-40 family members.

    HIGGINS WILL BE THE KEY TO TONIGHTS WIN OR LOSE.

  9. coutNY says:

    Not sure why Carbo is holding off with a Koivu/Kovalev/Ryder senario but here are 3 reason I came up with why I think he has: First, Carbo is too worried of defensively reliability. All are coming off a horrid season of negative +/- in a system designed to combat such things from happening. Second, Switching Ryder to the left side being right handed shot would seem to me, only to further disadvange him and asking Kovalev to switch would be ridiculus given his start and chemisrty with his current line. Last, I don’t think Kiovu generally likes playing with Kovalev or vice-versa. Maybe its because of there similarities in quaterbacking the offensive play. They seem to work well together PP together, but very few times have we seen them play regular shifts together.

    If one looks at for last years slumping Sens, it was a move putting their top 3 offensive machines together that turned their season around. If we were to fall into a prolonged slump and the candidates were receptive, I would try Higgins/Koivu/Kovalev and Kosti/Pleks/Ryder, get the creative control line 1 and the speedy transition game with line 2…? Like I said I don’t think Kovy & Koivu play nice together, so I don,t see it happening.

  10. nightmare_49 says:

    Karma was invented by Stephen Harper to rate his cabinet ministers.

  11. nightmare_49 says:

    A lot of logic in your posting and now we’ll have many posts fitting your logic into their agenda.

  12. nightmare_49 says:

    I have to agree with you about Higgy and his head down as many times when carrying the puck there are men open but he can’t notice them and ends up making one to many moves or shoots. He’ll have to work on that and Ryder is getting it away a little faster and is about half way there. Timing and confidence.

  13. krob1000 says:

    I read everything on here. Yes, I understand your point and I love these debates as long as they stay level headed(which they almost all do which is a big reason I love this site). There is ABSOLUTELY no doubt that Price is destined to be the number one but I don’t think there is any predetermined timeline. If he develops way ahead of schedule than perhaps he gets his shot sooner than later but he will not be pushed in any manner. As for the one game who would I choose…..right now it would still be Huet. As for if I could have only one goaltender forever it would be Price as he definitely has more potential and is younger. He is already an above average goaltender based on what I have seen and he has only played a handful of games.

    He has the positioning and size of Giguere but with better reflexes and instincts. He is just young and goaltending and confidence are synonymous. Look at Theodore…..league MVP to Racicot. He didn’t stop being a good goalie ….he stopped believing he was a good goalie. When pucks are being fired 90+ miles an hour from 30 feet you don’t have time to think……thinking is bad and I do believe Price has the mental makeup of a winner and the calm demeanour will help him but there is no need to rush him.

    Chipchura was always billed as a defensive minded center with offensive ability to match. Every game he seems to grow more comfortable and proves that he is equally as intelligent offensively (can’t underestimate the value of confidence…not just in sport but in life). IQ is IQ. I don’t think he is ever going to be a top scorer but I can see him developing into a Mike Richards type player who can do everything a little better than average. If I had to guess I would say that in two or three years Chipchura will be a 20+ goal , 40 assist guy with a plus 10 or higher while playing a shut down role. He will be a lot like Carbo was in his prime. I also think Guy will turn him into a top faceoff man at some point as well as it will be very important given the role he will have. Best case scenario if he ever increases his speed and conditioning he could turn out like a Rod Brind’Amour (of the last few years…two way everything man).

  14. Mr.Hazard says:

    ENOUGH PHILOSOPHY LETS WIN THIS ONE TONIGHT BOYS!

    Ex nihilo nihil fit

  15. J.T. says:

    And scored the winner himself.

  16. Ferguson-22 says:

    Habs will have their hands full tonight for sure. I also agree with CoutNY – Habs need to shoot more with traffic in front of their net. Good luck boys…

  17. T-roy West says:

    Sorry, that should read ” around the net that Chipchura has “. Just a thought but imagine a team made up of guys like Mike Fisher.

  18. krob1000 says:

    Based on the “larger role” comment before regarding Kostopolous I am assuming the Chipchura line will be getting more time than the Smolinski line. Only time will tell but I think that line might just work. I think those three all play about the same speed and Latendresse has a great shot and Chipchura may help him get it off a few times , especially if Kostopolous does the majority of the grinding. Lats is not Ryder or Higgins as I mentioned above but he is definitely an offensively minded player so I think I like this.

  19. T-roy West says:

    P.S. What the bleep is this karma thing again?

  20. T-roy West says:

    Krob1000

    Of course Huet is our “starting goaltender”, that’s obvious. Carb’s makes those decisions (or does he?). Huet reads newspapers and he might even read blog’s but he definately doesn’t walk around with his head in the sand. He know’s his day’s are numbered. So if a goaltenders day’s are numbered like alot of people suggest then is he really your number one? I also think it affects his play (i.e., he is a little shakey especially on long shots, price no problem, rebounds Price no problem, puck handling Price no problem. I’m under the suspicion that management is putting the gears in order so that Price is the #1 sooner than later. If Huet day’s are numbered this year and management know’s it then is he the number one goaltender or just the #1 starter by default. If you krob1000 had to choose one goaltender with the game on the line or you could only have one goaltender then who would you pick? About Roy behind the bench it’s because of the passion and youthful energy he would provide and how he would defend his players with a passion. They would go to war for him and that’s what we need but alas mybe that’s just a silly fantasy! Not! I’ll leave the Price vs Huet #1 scenerio alone for now but I think you know what I am getting at. Good debate and I respect your opinion. Just wondering if you read my comments yesterday when you and pleks were debating with fuhgawz. Also what do you think about the moves and soft hands around the need that Chipchura has – very eye opening indeed.

  21. krob1000 says:

    They always seem to dump the puck into Ryders corner when I believe anyone would agree that Higgins is better at puck retrieval. I agree and I think Kovalev does have vision and he is great along the boards. I cavn’t help wonder though if the people who earlier suggested Kovalev/Ryder/Kovalev may be onto something. Kovy and Higgins both battle well along the boards and Plekanec is in my estimation our teams glue guy (he can do anything well). He had good chemistry with Higgins and Kostitsyn last year so I don’t know why he wouldn’t now. As for Kovalev on the first line…..I think he would work wonderful with Ryder and Koivu.

    This WILL NOT HAPPEN unless the team slumps though as there is no need at this stage to tinker but I thing Carbo knows he has an ace up his sleeve if we hit a wall offensively. Don’t forget also our cap space …every day that passes a free agent’s salary cap cost decreases to us.

  22. krob1000 says:

    The Ian Cobb may be onto something.

    I think the Ryder and Higgins do have difficulty playing together as their styles somewhat clash. I think we are bettter served though if they remain together and Higgins lifts his head a little more. I think if not for the great success of Pleks and Kovy you may already be seeing Higgins with Plekanec and Kostitsyn and Kovalev with Ryder and Koivu. at some point we just may but for now I think Koivu’s line just has to learn to mesh and adapt to each other. After all, the first few games they were producing an incredible amount of chances.

    If only we had one more scorer we could have three lines with serious coring punch. Chipchura may develop enough offensive ability (it appears he is really close) to play set up man to an offensive winger on one side of him. I know his primary role is defence and that this thought will sound out there but IF we had one more scorer (free agent so as not to lose one) for our top line I bet Higgins and Chipchura would make one heck of a two way line.

    Anyways this is all crazy talk for now as we are doing well. It is interesting to note because if the Koivu line goes through a prolonged slump (and if we are losing and producing no offense)we just may see Chipchura getting either Ryder ot Higgins and a lot more ice time.

  23. cautiousoptimist says:

    Seriously. If Huet beats Anaheim in the Cup final in seven games this year, people here will be insisting that Price would have won it in six.

  24. coutNY says:

    The Koivu comment was not intended to belittle his effort or any of the 3 as of late for that matter. Constructive critism is what I would call it. I think Koivu has been trying too hard at times and a few forced passes have resulted. One can tell this is all in an effort to jump start his line. Last game he had a few turnovers, which looked to me, like he wasn’t fully confident in the guy he was passing to or may have been having second thoughts because they weren’t on the same page. I think he gets frustrated when Higgins or Ryder don’t display the same patience and as a result sometimes they seem out of sync.

    As for Higgins, I love to see a masterful puck control display along the boards but he needs to finish it with quick cross-ice pass to an awaitng 1-timer to Ryder or centered to Kiovu for the chip in, which will open up opportunities for himself with unpredicability of whether he’ll shoot or pass.

    Kovalev is famous for his ability to control the puck on the boards, and it is a very good attribute to posess, but they need to work on finding an open man after drawing the attention to themselves. In Hockey they call it Vision. This is the difference in a good offensive player verses a great.

  25. cautiousoptimist says:

    I think you’re a bit hard on Smolinski there – he’s not in Montreal to rack up goals, he’s there to be a Radek Bonk, and he’s every bit as good at shutting down opposing forwards as Bonk was.

    And I think the idea behind not booing players is that if they’re not playing well when they’ve got fan support, having their own fans turn on them isn’t likely to boost their morale. Aside from which, it’s a pretty crappy thing to do… Does the quality of your work increase when your boss tells you you’re garbage, or do you look to work elsewhere?

  26. The Ian Cobb says:

    Ryder & Higgins, Can not play on the same line, i’ve said this before and an example of what i said was a great game by Ryder only after Higgins went down in the first period 2 games ago. There is only 1 puck on the ice, and Higgins has it most of the time, that is great, but Ryder needs to carry the puck deep to be efective, Higgins plays a differnt style, he is on the puck like a shot and is a strong forechecker, three way passing plays is not Higgins game. I would like to move Higgins down a line or two where his style may be more productive. Now you turn Koivu and Ryder and WHO? loose for better play makeing.

  27. krob1000 says:

    CoutNy

    I think you are on the right track there in the quality vs quantity department. I think there has been so much emphasis placed on shots on net and it has perhaps got us pulling the trigger in situations where we have a little more time (easy for us to say from afar). The bad angle shots are not always a bad thing but they shouldn’t be a first option all of the time. IF a rebound is surrendered they are grea and a shot on net is never really a bad thing.

    There have been times though where it would be nice if the puck carrier showed a little more patience (again easy for us to say) but I think Carbo has tried to get them back to the basics (shooting) again after a string of l ow shots/chances performances last week and the week before. It has worked and guys have been shooting the puck and he is probably going to give guys a little more slack as they (Ryder too) have remembered it seems that you need to shoot to score.

    The Higgins head down thing does bother me at times but his positives far outwiegh his lone downfall as far as I can see. I think Ryder has been great as of late and was for the first several ganmes. I think he got frustrated after being unable to finish despite several chances and got away from being himself and definitely did need to be reminded of his forte (mission accomplished). Koivu I cannot fault for anything and don’t quite understand what you are saying. He is best when he holds on to the puck as his patience is probable his biggest offensive asset. If Koivu had a great shot he would score a ton but he scores 90 percent of his goals from inside 20 feet and that is fine because he is good at being Koivu.

    The Senators also have an ultra intelligent team and they are very adept at amking and taking those hard passes even in tight. Colorado uses this same approach in the offensive end and relies on streaking players getting of good shots in close. There is a downfall to this that is probably not in Carbo’s playbook as it can result in odd-man rushes the other way. Oh yeah they also have Heatley, Alfreddson and Spezza (3 of the top ten or fifteen players in the league).

  28. joe-hab-nuno says:

    I like our goaltenting situation, one of the areas i don’t have aproblem except until the point when Carbo said we don’t have a no.1 now. That’s when those high goals started to happen(talking about the last cpl 4 goal games). Could be one of the reason’s Huet seems a bit off.

  29. joe-hab-nuno says:

    Smolinski for 2 mil is high price to pay. Mike Johnson signed with the blues for about 800k did the same job as Smolinski if not better, also liked his effort last year. I don’t hate Smolinski, i just think we could of gotten better.

    Not bashing Lats or Grabs, but i think Kots jr and D’Agos would have a bigger impact.

  30. HabsGO says:

    It should be a good game against this well coached team from other division. Hope the boys from long island will have a good game and better luck, get some points, Mike and Chris. We need someone to be at the slot to block Goalie’s view more in order to score. Our defense should get back to normal, play a better positioned game.

  31. 24 Cups says:

    Well said krob1000. For now, the best players are in the right place at the right time. Just like in parliament, there may be a ‘cabinet’ shuffle down the road once everyone’s strengths and weaknesses become more apparent.

  32. T-roy West says:

    I agree east_coast_hab_fan. Enough with the Ryder bashing, I think he knows he has to be better. Higgin’s, love the guy (In a none sexual way) should talk less and score more when he gets his chances and stop calling out his defencemen in front of the media when they have a bad game. And for the love of pete people step outside the box. If you had your choice between having Price or Huet for a goaltender, who would it be? Price that’s who! Price doesn’t have to play more games than Huet to be the #1 in my humble opinion, he just is. I’m not knocking Huet because Huet is a good goaltender but I think even Huet know’s who the true #1 is even if it is not on paper! It has been said that so many ahl playoff games are worth so many nhl games so it’s safe to say he has more experience than 6 nhl games. When you hear the comparisons between Price and Roy the biggest one is the confidence factor. He makes his team confident because he is. When the defencemen looked back and saw Patrick the were inspired. Last weeks barn burner with Boston was no fluke! They put up the seven goals because they knew he could keep them in the game and they felt they could go on the offensive. They want to win for him, it doesn’t matter how or why, what matter’s is they do. He is young – just like them. All we would need is Roy behind the bench and you would see the youthful energy fly, after all Patrick was the ” True Captain ” of the Canadiens in the locker room. What do you guys ( and girls ) think of that scenerio. Please let me know!

    P.S. A special hello to all habs fans out west, yee friggin ha!

    T-roy West 🙂

  33. krob1000 says:

    Completely disagree with Price being the true no. 1 stuff. The Roy behind the bench scenario could very well happen some time down the road. I believe Carbo will be the man for a few years or more and Roy may in fact enter the organization on a management or scouting level first but I definitely think at some point Roy is going to be a member of the organization again. Roy is always going to be remembered as a Hab and it was one bonehead (a likely candidate for a “where are they now” feature that ruined everything). Roy is a winner and in my opinion is more of a leader than even Mark Messier. He is passionate, successful and intelligent. Like Carbonneau last year though he needs to learn when to turn on and off the emotions as a coach/manager but he is getting great experience right now as a coach/g.m.

    Roy will be behind an NHL bench someday and I know I would like it to be ours. I am just guessing obviously as we all do on here but I would figure he would want to stay as close to home as possible.

  34. coutNY says:

    When watching the Sens game OTT offense almost looked predictable… Like it had a formula. Spread the D by going to a corner than try a pass to a trailing Net crasher hoping to catch Huet out of Position. This is the formula that has been key to alot of our PP success. It helped that Alfee seemed to have magical powers to come up with the puck time after time and the puck seemed like it was glued to his stick until he released it.

    We’re getting away from good set-up plays and focusing on taking straight on shots. Its Quality vs. Quantity issue. Whether its Higgins holding the puck with his head down, Ryder taking his time to try to set the puck on a tee or find the perfect comfortable positioning, or Koivu holding the puck trying to make a perfect pass and healing the puck because of second thoughts; we need to get back to the basics of getting the goalie out of position or imparing his vision.

  35. 24 Cups says:

    Further to all the discussion about goaltending. As a Leaf hater, you just have to love the fact that the young goaltender (Rask) the Lousy Leafs traded to get Raycroft defeated the goaltender (Toskala) the Leafs traded for in order to improve on Raycroft. And it only cost them their first round pick (as well as their second) last year which could have been Cherepanov! Not to mention that these two guys will collectively eat up over $6 mil in cap space next year for the Leafs. As stated before, Huet/Price are the least of our worries. Of course then there’s McCabe and Kabina ……..

  36. Thumper says:

    Nice arena, good organ and I feel a good win coming on. I think many are being too harsh on the Habs, including the guys on the podcast today. Ottawa are the best team around right now and they certainly did not destroy us, in fact Kovy could have scored 2 in the last 10 mins and everyone might have been praising a glorious display, but hey I’m liking the team we have this year.

  37. krob1000 says:

    Smoinski has been a bit of a no show as of late but he is not here to make headlines. His best games are the ones where you hardly notice him. I agree he has made some uncharacteristic bonehead plays but more often than not his value is in his “playing high as a third man” and cutting off passsing lanes. I don’t think he has really lived up to his past performances or expectations but I don’t think he has hurt us in any way. I’m still taking the wait and see approach with him. Let’s also remember that it is he that ends up with different wingers every game whenever an experiment is tried on the top two lines. Once we settle in and the lines somewhat iron themselves out at that point I think we will be able to make a more accurate assessment.

    As for the Hamilton thing…..we have avoided the injury bug thus far (knocking on wood) but once it hits a couple of players will get their chance. Noone right now is looking at a real risk of being demoted (sorry to say Latenderesse and Grabovski bashers) and unless the team goes into a major funk and these guys really stink it up injuries are the only possible reason a Bulldog will be called up. Personally, I think Kostitsyn looked pretty good in camp but I don’t think he could make an immediate impact unless playing on the pp or with one of the top two lines (not going to happen).

  38. Blitzen says:

    I agree about the Sens. The only way they lose right now is if they beat themselves as they did against the Laffs. Not worried about those losses but we need to stock up on Ws against teams like the Isles. I would really like to see Higgy finally break out.

  39. Scotty90 says:

    Habs are doing extremely well, more so than many, and I mean many, people thought they would do. We lost 3 games to Ottawa… so what. They are the best team in the NHL. They have experienced players who have been playing together for a while. Can they get any better? maybe a little, its hard to be better than they already are. The Habs, a few experienced guys, a lot of new faces, generally speaking have not been playing together as a team for very long. Can they gat any better….. I think they will be getting a lot better. With each and every game they are getting stronger. Look out Sens we are coming!

    Habs over Isles tonight….3-1

  40. Blitzen says:

    To those who say the Habs have trouble protecting a lead, I would suggest that it’s exactly because they are trying to protect it that they fail. They should just keep applying pressure on the opponents instead of falling back into a shell. I don’t think they have the personel to play in a shell.

  41. Blitzen says:

    The guy whose value I fail to see is Smolinski. I haven’t seen him make defensive or offensive gems but I have seen him make a few boneheaded plays. I would rather they give a chance to one of the Hamilton boys than keep playing him.

  42. joe-hab-nuno says:

    I’d like to mention that has much as i like the habs record right now i don’t really think it reflects the team we have. From all the wins they have they probably have 3 maybe 4 convincing wins. I still hate it or I am not comfortable with their 1 or 2 goal leads in the going into the third. It’s been twenty games now and i think we have to start to address the little problems we have.

    Imo Latender has to be sent down and learn how to play like a power forward. If it wasn’t for his background and the media here, he wouldn’t even been with the habs this year and last. They say it takes a while for a power forward to develop, why the hell are they trying to do this with this guy here (even though i think he played his best game 2 nights ago). If he played like that for 80% of the games i wouldn’t be annoyed with this guy(forgot to mention without triping on the red line that is suppose to be under the ice surface).

    Grabs is too small and get pushed and bounced around all the time. Like someone commented on, you could be small and learn how to stay up. I also think he should be sent down as he hasn’t impressed me too much except for his spead.

    Should have brought up the 2 guys who where the most impressive in the preseason, I’m talking about D’agos and kots jr. Imo Smolinski has been tottally useless in this team.

    In defence, Gorges has done as many mistakes as Breezer if not less. And while they make Breezer paly most games they let this younger guy sit and rot and not make him learn from his mistakes. But still not jumping so much on bReezer since he’s not making 4 mil, which was the cause for the boo birds. Hate the people who say we shouldn’t boo players, but please if your make those mils and doing not to show for it you’ll get my boo.

    Or once they figure out which d-man is least qualified now bring up another big body (stick Obyrne here) on the line up.

  43. Habs_008 says:

    Yeah Re, go habs! Kostso For Prime Minister!

  44. HNS says:

    Hopefully it will be a great holiday homecoming for Higgins and Komi. Habs need to play their game with a major tweak defensively. DiPietro is a very solid goalie(not worth the contract he signed), so this game should be a low scoring slugfest. GO HABS GO!!!


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