Game 28: Canadiens snap losing streak

Bruin sandwich: Canadiens’ Maxim Lapierre crunches Bruins’ Glen Metropolit between goaltender Carey Price in Boston Thursday night.

Lineups | Preview | Game Story | Game Summary | Event Summary | Boxscore | Boone’s Blog

UPDATED by Kevin Mio, NEW links at 8:50 a.m. on Dec. 7.

It could have been another case of déjà vu for the Canadiens on Thursday night in Boston but, thankfully, the Habs were able to change the finale against the Boston Bruins.

The Canadiens jumped out to a 3-0 lead
after the first period as Christopher Higgins, Kyle Chipchura and Tomas Plekanec beat Bruins rookie netminder Tuuka Rask. Ryan O’Byrne collected his first NHL point on the Chipchura goal, one of his two assists in his NHL debut.

But Boston came storming back in the second period with goals by Phil Kessel and P.J. Axelsson in the span of two and a half minutes. The Bruins peppered Carey Price with 13 shots in the second period, while Montreal could muster only three.

However, the Canadiens rebounded in the third frame and showed some resiliency, outshooting the Bruins 17-7 and getting a much-needed insurance goal by Mathieu Dandenault 13 minutes into the final frame.

Montreal has now won seven straight against the Bruins, going 4-0 this season. The Canadiens have outscored Boston 28-11 during that span.

The win could prove to be a costly one for the Canadiens as they lost two forwards to injury. Bryan Smolinski left with a right knee injury and Steve Begin injured his left arm. Both players will be re-evaluated on Friday.

The Canadiens and Bruins each went 1-for-3 on the power play. The win snapped Montreal’s three-game losing streak.

Michael Ryder was a healthy scratch for the Canadiens on Thursday night, a move intended to send the two-time 30-goal scorer and the rest
of the team a message, The Gazette’s Pat Hickey writes.

The Canadiens return to action on Saturday night when the Carolina Hurricanes visit the Bell Centre.


  1. showey47 says:

    he may be an ass but he plays to win instead of playing afraid to lose. Roy would be an awesome addition to the team and has proven he can coach with a memorial cup victory. Carbo has never been a head coach before last season.

  2. Gilles Poisson says:

    Pas de probleme. Thank you.

  3. ebk says:

    great line,chorske. Reminds me of the best sports quote ever by John Mckay, coach of the 0-14 Tampa Bay Buccaneers

    Coach Mckay what to you think of your team’s execution?
    McKay…. I’m all for it.

  4. ebk says:

    and Carboneau isn’t

  5. coutNY says:

    Couple of things I disagree with on the Ryder/Koivu/Kovalev combination and talent is not the factor:

    Ryders much more speedy than Koivu and Kovalev, whose style is more of a possession game and slow paced cycling. I think he would thrive on a line with Pleks & Kostitsyn because all three have demonstrated their ability to bring a lethal transition game. Higgins has also but his game has altered a bit due to adding muscle in the off-season slowed him in transition, but has allowed him to out-muscle his opponent with puck control and around the net. Ryder does not get front of the net nearly as well.

    Next, being mandated to Left wing handcuffs Ryder because when cycling he will either a)have his back to the wall or b) have the puck exposed, forcing him into the play to see the net causing turnovers. As you admitted yourself “Ryder lacks their stickhandling and hands”, would he be expect to perform better in a foriegn position with adding more absticles to overcome?

    Many piont to prior success on the powerplay as why this combonation will work, as in a previous blog here is why I think they differ:

    PP opens up the Ice for Ryder, not having a man-on-man defender to contend with, also allows for time to get into positon to compensate for being on his off-wing.

    PP allows players the luxury not to worry about their Defensive responsibilities, so they can focus on Offense because of their numeric advantage.

    PP allows Ryder another time advantage to set up his wrist shot, which has been his nemisis this year.

  6. Derek2 says:

    Fore checkers kill us every time and we don’t adapt. Our passing is atrocious and teams with a good fore check have figured that out. They aren’t afraid of getting caught up ice because we cough the puck up on horrible passing.

  7. cautiousoptimist says:

    Only problem is, he’s a bit of an ass. 🙂

  8. Derek2 says:

    That is a great observation. This automatic flop opens up the top of the net. Not horrendous for Price as he is huge (but still gives up goals high), but Huet is smaller and does leave a sizeable gap. When I saw Halak doing it last year I thought – who is coaching this guy? He is leaving the whole top half of the net open.

    Rollie Melancon is I believe the goaltending coach. I don’t remember him being a stellar goalie but he seems to have found a long term niche here in Montreal.

  9. krob1000 says:

    How about that 16 year old Sergei Lagavulin…. Fire on Ice and well worth the cost.

  10. JF says:

    I like your line combinations and agree with the idea of mixing between the first two lines and the second two, rather than sticking a grinder on one of the top lines and demoting a non-producing scorer to the third or fourth line. The first option could result in good chemistry and chances, the second is unlikely to. I also share your sense of urgency about this game. It’s one the Habs really have no excuse not to win. If we lose or – worst-case scenario – simply don’t show up, I’ll be very worried. And very disgusted. So disgusted I’ll be tempted to sell or give away my tickets for Saturday’s game!

  11. 24 Cups says:

    Hey Krob – If we’re going to play the Santa card could we not go for the brass ring and ask for a game breaking winger and a center who has size, speed, and scoring ability? Also, please ask him to throw in a case of single malt – my stock is depleting rapidly with each heartbreaking Hab defeat.

  12. J.T. says:

    Okay, I’ll bite:

    Smolinski all year
    teeth gnashing, ulcers bleeding.
    Breezer gives up pucks.

  13. Roy-Rules says:

    We should bring in Patrick Roy, he’ll shake up the whole team, plus he knows what it takes to win…he’ll do anything for it. Also he’ll bring so much energy behind the bench it is just crazy, look at the impact he had his first year coaching the Ramparts.

  14. Chorske says:

    The rope bit is definitely the best bit. EVerything you’d ever want to know about being a Habs fan, perfectly encapsulated in that one verse.

  15. Chorske says:

    Oh. My. Gawd.

    Best post ever.

    How about a Canadiens Haiku contest?

    Habs flounder, crush’d by
    enemy shots. Slumping vets
    on pine ponder golf.

  16. 24 Cups says:

    Fantastic! I appreciate the time and effort (as well as the creativity) that went into your poetic post.

  17. krob1000 says:

    Guess I deserved that!!lol

  18. Chorske says:

    Stupidhead! 😉

  19. Chorske says:



  20. Chorske says:

    Some of our players ARE revolting!!

    Gainey has the silence of the druids. I’m not sure whether that’s a good thing or a bad, but one thing’s for sure: the bloom is off the rose wrt Carbo & la foule. Gainey may need to do what he did with Brisebois and publicly support his man. If he doesn’t do it, and soon, what will that say about Carbo’s future here?

  21. Habs_008 says:

    Carbo is a better coach then last year. I dont really think he is the problem like most ppl on here say. Why arent the players held accountable? The Coach can only do so much, its the players that have to show up and play. Have the players shown up? Lets see what these bulldogs can do. Maybe they will show up.

  22. krob1000 says:

    I only disagree with the calling out of players if it is the first time these guys are hearing it. Montreal is not like any other hockey market and our coach is bullied into going into detail over every detail. He is blunt and honest and has not made the dumb comments he was with regularity last year. Given what we have seen so far from Carbo I am going to give him the benefit of the doubt in that regard and assume that anything he has said to the reporters he has said to them. I don’t think he has lost the confidence or control I just think he has likely taken the line juggling thing so far that he can’t even look at it objectively anymore. That is my biggest fear and I am hpoing that an assistant or g.m. may say something soon.

  23. Scotty90 says:

    Slump or not… the damage is done and it will take a while for the players to trust and have respect for the coach. Who in their right would want to play for him… then we wonder why no one wants to play here… its just an added dis-incentive (is this a word?) to play here.

  24. ebk says:

    The one constant with this team is, if Kovalev is on the ice that line is dangerous. Period.

  25. smiler2729 says:

    Ahhh, the perfect tonic for a Habs slump – the Boston Bruins.

  26. krob1000 says:

    Yes that is what you have done and thats why I like what you did far better than anythin the team has actually done but I really would like to see the Kovalev-Koivu-Ryder combo because they are our three most established players (and best). They all also have similar speed and think in east-west way when necessary. They all have great instincts and vision (although Ryder lacks their stickhandling and hands). Ryder and Kovalev are both player who would thrive on their off wings in my opinion and Koivu could dish the puck to either side. Once the puck is on one side any one of that trio has the ability and vision to find the opposite winger (both great shooters) if a shot isn’t available for them.
    I think that they have all improved defensively enough this year to handle the responsibility that would accompany an eggs in one basket approach.

    The resulting second line would be composed of three younger, faster players who already demonstrated chemistry together last year (Pleks-Kostit-Higgins). I might even venture into considering Latendreses with Pleks and Higgy and have Kostitsyn with Chipchura.

    I realize that Kovy-Pleks-Kosti had some great games and have played well together (so did Koivu-Higgy-Ryder at the beginning of the season). At the same time it appears that whenever Kovalev is on the ice with Koivu something good happens. They are far and away our two most intelligent players offensively (no disrespect to Plekanec but he is not Koivu….yet).

    It almost seems too obvious considering all of the mixing and matching we are doing that we should at least give this a try. Why Kostitsyn has been bulletproof with regards to these shake ups is beyond me. Did he earn it by default by being fortunate enought o be on the ice with Kovy and Pleks when they were clicking. If any name doesn’t belong on the top six …it would be Kostitsyn (I think he is great but any outsider looking in would likely feel the same).

    It may not work but it seems to me to have been the most obvious thing to try but for some reason we have tried some very strange combos (some of which even worked and we abandoned).

  27. The Cat says:

    We can devise any type of line combinations to better our 5 on 5 production all week, itll only get better with size up the middle and winning face-offs. Period. We’re smaller and always chasing. And if youre a small team you had better be dictating the play with your speed or else youre ^&%$%^&.

  28. Habs_008 says:

    Maybe we need a JFJ Type guy? haha, just kidding! We are in a slump, every team has them through-out the year. I dont think we need a coaching change, we need our players to play. Score 5 on 5.

  29. Scotty90 says:

    I think Carbonneau has shown his true colors by pointing fingers and placing the blame on the players…. what kind of crap is that? Gainey would never have done that. Maybe the players are quietly revolting and what better way to do it than to get the fans in an uproar and demand change… be it the players or coach. Gainey has his work cut out for him and he may have to make a very difficult decision. Maybe he can make Carbo an assistant GM instead and bring someone with coaching savvy who can rally the troops. Can you folks think of anyone that can be dropped in and turn things around in time?

  30. HNS says:

    Carbo keeps talking about rebuilding confidence. What does that have to do with work effort. Stick to the basics of the game and you’ll be rewarded. I played back some Tivo’d games and it was like someone threw a switch. Players getting into the corners were battling for puck possesion and winning those battles. They were beating other players to the puck while other players, by playing a good positional game, had that player covered. Players finished their checks. This team, with the same players, with the same coaches, were winning big.
    Now their work effort has diminished. No one wants to get dirty and drive to the net. Very perplexing….
    One more thing. The more things change, the more they stay the same. They say that in the NEW NHL, enforcers are not neccesary. Bull S&$# ! This team needs at least one player
    who can go out there and smash someone’s head in. Tequilla may be needed here…GO HABS GO!!!

  31. coutNY says:

    Hey I thought you’d be happy to see I was giving Ryder another chance???

    ” mix and match lines one and two with each other and three and four with each other so as to maintain confidence and integrity with regards to role.” I thought thats what I was doing.

    You wanted the Kovalev Ryder match up I bet…

  32. LTHF says:

    counTNY and gr8tkay totally agree with your comments and/or suggestions. As I stated few days ago, current team dont appear to have any heart and desire to play a full 60 mins.

  33. The Cat says:

    Id be happier to see Halak starting than Price, I think Halak has one thing Huet and Price dont have right now and thats the massive ego that gives the abilitity to steal a game and be ‘The Man’, but it doesnt matter really, with the scheduling and the late loss in NJ, tonights game is ours for the taking.

  34. krob1000 says:

    I don’t like your combinations but I would prefer that sort of shakeup instead of the insertion of depth players on top units and top tier players being “demoted”. By the way, how must the depth guys feel when our most common punishment appears to be playing with them. Lets either try the lines that worked at the onset of the season or mix and match lines one and two with each other and three and four with each other so as to maintain confidence and integrity with regards to role.

  35. coutNY says:

    I think the trouble with our 5-5 stems from a formula that Carbo has derived on what a line make-up should consist of for our scoring lines. Like it or not it seems he wants:

    Player 1: Play maker ~ Koivu, Kovalev
    Player 2: Speed element ~ Kostitsyn, Ryder
    Player 3: two-way player or Physical ~ Pleks, Higgins, Lats

    I say we need to think outside the box and match talent and speed to have some chemistry.

    Try match offensive styles ~

    Possibility 1

    Possibility 2
    #1 ~ Koivu-Pleks-Kovalev
    #2 ~ Higgins-Kostitsyn-Ryder

    I think breaking away from this “mold” of players and move players into situations according to stlye and complementing attributes, instead of, moving Defenseman and historically 3rd and 4th line players into the mix not that are not typically suited to perform in a scoring role.

    Thats my thought anyway… but who am I to say, just another arm chair poster…

  36. krob1000 says:

    Sorry about the grade two level post.

  37. krob1000 says:

    I am not a fan of predictions and don’t want to jinx us but the reality is this game could be ours for the taking. Boston is coming off a demoralizing loss last night (up 3-0 and choked it in OT) and without Thomas. We have had success gainst Boston and they are infamous for giving up waaaay too many shot on goal. we have to strike quick and I think I too may feel slight panic if we can’t come out guns a blazing tonight. I would guess that smart money is shfting to the Habs in betting cirtcles even thought the game is in Boston.

    I certainly hope we do not counterbalance the advantage (B’s back to back,no Thomas,demoralizing loss and bigtime choke alst night) by dressing a wonky lineup with two defenseman playing forward and 5 defensive/grinder forwards as well. Play Ryder and sit an aging grinder to get Lapierre in or one of the hybrid deforwards.

    It is a little early to ask Santa for anything but all I want for Christmas is some stability with the lines.

  38. 24 Cups says:

    Man we would have a lot of egg on our faces if we traded for Beauchemin after we let him go on waivers. As for a first round pick I think it’s imperative that we hold on to it. Not being a doomsdayer, but there’s a realistic chance that we won’t make the playoffs this year. That automatically qualifies us for the lottery. In theory, we could be selecting a top five player. Not enough to get Stamkos but somebody pretty good. I’ve already got him picked out. Kyle Beach from the WHL. He answers a lot of our needs (unfortunately he is a real loose cannon but hey he’ll grow out of it). Plays center, 6’3″, 225 lbs, power forward, scores goals, hits and fights, totally intense. We’ve got to get this guy.

  39. krob1000 says:


  40. habsguy says:

    geez, I know there used to be some adults who posted here. Now it seems like a bunch of name calling children !!

  41. Moey says:

    I hope you guys are either ex-NHL coaches, or have been in the Habs dressing room this week, or have at least talked to the players. You have no idea what’s going on with Carbo and the guys.

    They talk about women and soap operas, stayed tuned tonight for repeat episodes of “the stomach turns”.

  42. Gilles Poisson says:

    I’m not sure what we do. I never see a team with 9 defenseman before. Thank you.

  43. Naila Jinnah says:

    AWESOME!!!! 😀

  44. krob1000 says:

    That’s fine and dandy you feel that way but don’t we dress four lines?

  45. downeast hab says:

    Plain and simple. Go back to the original lines, and take the horse winkers off of Higgins so he can see to pass the puck.

  46. TradeRyder says:

    Nice! I gots da rope!
    Thanks for the line changes I asked for Carbs! Now, do the defense!

  47. TradeRyder says:

    Hey CArbo: There is solid research that shows that winning teams don’t point the finger, unless it is at themselves. Winning teams say “I could do better.” Losing teams say “why didn’t he do better”. Which are you fostering?

    Thanks for the line changes I asked for Carbs! Now, do the defense!

  48. TradeRyder says:

    I agree. But if you were in education, you know a little about motivation. And as you say – respect. You don’t get respect when you dish off the responsibility of the team. You don’t get motivation when you say “my team is playing lousy – I don’t know why”… or when you call out players to the media over and over. I wish Carbo well too. But studies show you punishment should be used sparingly… praise liberally. Focus on the good Guy, for a change. RESPECT the fact that you have brought your players to this slump, and that you must lead them out of it. RESPECT their earnest struggle, encourage their strengths. Put the stick away for awhile, it’s only hurting.

    Thanks for the line changes I asked for Carbs! Now, do the defense!

  49. Gilles Poisson says:

    Frank14 it made me very sad to hear you say that about my head. Ce n’est pas ma faute. Coach Guy has tried the 4 line system and it has not work so Bob gave coach Guy more Defenseman. To have success you must dont be afraid to try the new things. And everybody knows Ryder is one of my top players but now the team is very deep and he is in a bit of a slump IMHO so I think he should be put off the bench for just one game. Salut Frank14. Merci beaucoup.

  50. coutNY says:

    Lost interest with the Ted Nolan reference. We had more wins than them last year, losing a playoff berth by a few OTL’s. We have the same amount of wins as they do this year, smoked them in our only meeting this year, and are ahead of them standings.

    Not willing to make the leap that the talent of NYI is any better or worse than ours. They have a respectable team with talented individuals such as Satan, Comrie, Fedotenko, Vasicek, Sutton, Witt, Bergeron, DiPietro and lead by a gritty Guerin. I shed tears of empithy for Nolan and his teams situation. I surely don’t feel he is the epitome of coaching, especailly when Carbo has done just as well or better in his tenure with similar talent.

    Carbo and the team have hit a slump, not ready to concede that the SKY IS FALLING…. Go Habs Go

  51. Habs_008 says:

    The Reason we are in such a rut is that our PP has gone south. Teams have seen the game tape and figured out how to kill pens against us. With no PP Goals the game is over. WE CANT PLAY 5 ON 5! Unless we figure out a way to score 5 on 5 we can kiss the season goodbye.

  52. J.T. says:

    Good Coach Carbonneau looked out
    Before he played the Bruins
    He saw nine D-men full of doubt
    And a first line all in ruins.
    Dimly burned his hopes that night
    For the slump was cruel.
    Another loss would make things tight
    And to the fire add fuel.

    Hither, Kirk, and stand by me,
    If thou know’st it telling,
    Yonder rookie, who is he?
    And who should he be spelling?
    Coach, he stands at six foot five
    and that’s in stocking feet sir
    He could our poor hopes revive
    Skate, hit and the B’s deter

    Bring O’Byrne and Lapierre
    Add them to the roster
    We could use some passion here
    Our playoff hopes to foster
    Guy and Kirky forth they went.
    Forth they went together.
    To snare two points was their intent
    and the storm to weather.

    Coach, the slump is longer now
    And the boos grow louder
    Our D too many goals allow
    with offence soft as powder.
    Mark my footsteps, my good Kirk
    tread thou in them boldly.
    We can solve all ills with work
    or benching guys most coldly.

    In his master’s steps he trod
    the line-up card was written.
    Smolinski on the first, the clod!
    And Michael Ryder sittin’.
    Therefore Habs fans put your hope
    In Max, O’Byrne and Carey
    But keep on hand a coil of rope
    In case the B’s make merry.

  53. Habs64 says:

    Price vs Rask I see!!

  54. Scotty90 says:

    Lapierre will bring new energy which hopefully will rub off on his team-mates. Looking forward to seeing O’Byrne. He can’t be any woese than Brisebois and he will bring a physical presence. I am sure Komi will appreciate a little help in that respect. Also, why can’t we just plant either Komi or O’Byrne in front of the opponents goalie during Habs power plays. Worth a try. Goalie can’t stop a puck if he doesn’t see it coming. Sens used to do that with Chara on occasion and it helped. Different strategies that keep an opponent guessing and having to adjust. Just a thought to help get us out of a rut.

  55. CH1909-2009 says:

    If we could get Beachemain for a pick and a prospect, DO IT. Valentenko and a first rounder.

    Markov Komi
    Beachemin Hammer
    O’Byrne Gorges



  56. Frank14 says:

    To Gilles Poisson :

    Do you really think the Habs are gonna go with 3 lines
    and 4 sets of defencemen. You have suffered to many
    knocks to the head my friend. Go back to the Astrodome
    and I hope people say, “Evis has NOT left the building”

    To teamplayer: No I’m not talking about that antiquated
    rumour: Read CAREFULLY > Calgary – Montreal – Boston but
    nice graphics ! Oh… Ryder will be collecting food with
    his wife at the entrance. Poisson get real. Habs are having
    a hard time with 4 full lines, nevermind 3 ! Please… I
    think you’d have more success with FFWrestling

    Breakout nite for Ryder [ if he plays ]. Higgy and Max
    will light up something. And being an advocate of brawling
    to settle your problems, I hope O’Byrne breaks a few
    bones in Chara’s face UNLESS Zdeno is staying in Mtl
    after the game !!!!


  57. CH1909-2009 says:

    You may be on to something there…


  58. 24 Cups says:

    Carbonneau Quotes:
    On the two call ups from Hamilton. “For sure it’s a message to the other players that the party’s over, it’s time to play hockey”
    After the Detroit game. “We’re trying to rebuild our confidence here, the confidence isn’t there and there’s a a lot of hesitation in our game”

    Before I retired I worked in the education system. We would always tell new first year teachers how important it was to immediately gain the admiration of the students and establish an atmosphere of respect, trust, and discipline. The teachers obviously must be in control but they must also act as roles models. Mutual respect, honesty, consistency, and a sense of fairness were the buildings blocks. The rapport between teacher and student was almost as important as the actual teaching that was going on in the classroom. This point was vital because once a teacher lost control of the class it would be near impossible to gain it back again. Chaos would reign and very little learning would be accomplished.

    I wonder if Carbo is getting close to that point. In fairness, it’s not easy to motivate players who average $2mil a year and can play for 29 other teams. Everyone has their own opinion as to how the game should be played. Everyone seems to have a fragile ego. Yet I look at the Islanders and they have a roster that seems very average in terms of basic talent. But for the last two years Ted Nolan has had these guys playing way over their collective heads and winning games that they have no right to win. It seems that the Habs are close to going the other way. Gainey is loyal and would be very hesitant to let Carbo go. But history is full of teams that tuned out their coach and just played out the string until the inevitable dismissal occurred. Which for us would mean more time adrift in the bottom half of the NHL standings. There are no big trades coming, no free agent signings, the best players (aside from Sergei K.) have been called up from Hamilton. At this point it’s not even about winning games anymore. The Canadiens’ immediate destiny rests with Guy Carbonneau and his ability to deal with his own destiny as coach of the Habs. It’s a heavy burden to carry in a hockey mad city like Montreal. I wish him well.

  59. Gilles Poisson says:

    Sir, that is your opinion. The opinions of coach Guy and of the hockey analyst Mr. Grabs, says he should be on the first line beside Koivu. Thank you.

  60. Blitzen says:

    I’m thinking Smokes has compromising pictures of Carbo, Gainey and Gillett at a lemon party.

  61. Habs_008 says:

    Just win a game plz……the laffs are catching up!

  62. kevin m says:

    Also been hearing that Burke is looking to shop F. Beauchemin in order to make cap room.

    Do we have anything that the Ducks could use to get him back with the organization?

    Don’t you think we gave up on this guy too early?

  63. Gilles Poisson says:

    Coach Guy, if you are watching, here is my lines for tonight.

    Koivu, Higgins, Smolinski
    Kostitson, Plecanek, Kovalev
    Maxim, Guillaume, Tom “Le Bombe”

    Markov Komisarek
    Hamrlik O’Byrne
    Francis Patrice
    Dandy Streit

    I am sorry to Ryder but he is working his butt off out there, really working hard, and I think he needs rest if he wants to grow up and be the next John Leclair. Thank you.

  64. 24 Cups says:

    There’s a bad smell coming out of Anaheim. Brian Burke has beat the system again. Scott Niedermayer took half a year to think about his retirement and now conveniently has decided to come back and play. In the process, he saves his team $2.5 mil in cap space(Check out they now have room to accommodate his lowered salary. Not to mention that he is well rested for another run for the Cup and will still make about $4 mil. Well I’m not buying his line of BS for one second. Maybe if his name was Rob I would because nobody would really care. I have no idea if Selanne is coming back at some point but if he does then Anaheim will in reality have a cap of $58 mil instead of $52 mil. Smooth move.

  65. Mr.Hazard says:


    Ex nihilo nihil fit

  66. mjames says:

    The following observation/comment/rant is for Dave Stubbs and Pat Hickey.

    This will be a tough game tonight. The Canadiens may have a chance since both Carbo and Julien play a defensive trap style game. Therefore there should be little pressure applied by Boston in our end. They will peel off as soon as the Canadiens get or touch the puck. They are not allowed, just as we are, to press the forecheck. Similar to us, Boston does not play a puck possession style. The team that makes the fewest turnovers in center ice should win, assuming the goal tending is okay.

    What is disturbing is that as soon as we play a strong forechecking, puck possession team along the lines of Tampa Bay, Buffalo, New York, Carolina, Atlanta, Ottawa, Toronto and Washington, we will lose. The only teams we seem to play even are the Islanders and Boston and that is because they play the same passive style.

    What bothers me the most is that the coaches do not seem to recognize this. Carbo does not alter his style depending on the team we are playing. He plays same trap regardless of the team. What is his job? This is one of the beefs I have with Carbo. He is one of the reasons why this team will not win. After a strong start I begin to believe that the pundits were correct in their evaluation of this team. I would love for them to win but I just do not think we have the necessary players nor do I think we have a coach who can get the max out of the players even if he had Lecalvier and Ovetchkin on the team.

    I wish the Dave and Pat would comment on the ineffectiveness of this trap style and Carbo’s unwillingness to change. The team’s malaise has nothing to do with line changes. If I see Pat Hickey mention line changes one more time I will scream. Can someone step forward and get to the root of this problem.


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