Game 34: Canadiens fall to Stars

Stars left wing Jamie Benn scores on Canadiens goaltender Carey Price last night. Tim Sharp, Reuters

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AUDIO:  Brian Gionta | Carey Price | Tomas Plekanec | Stéphane Robidas

• At a Glance: The season’s longest road trip is not off to the start the Canadiens has hoped for. They lost their second straight on Tuesday night, a 5-2 decision at the hands of the rising Dallas Stars. Dallas took a 2-0 lead in the first period on goals from Adam Burish and Jamie Benn, a shorthanded effort. They made it 3-0 early in the second when Karlis Skrastins popped a loose puck beyond Carey Price after the goalie thought he had the puck frozen between his pads. THe Canadiens got that one back midway through the period when Travis Moen’s pass to the front of the net went off Mathieu Darche and behind Kari Lehtonen. But Brad Richards erased any doubt that the Stars were in control of this game when he scored a power-play goal with three minutes to go in the second period. Brian Gionta made it 4-2 with a shorthanded goal of his own 12 minutes into the third period, the Canadiens captain’s 12th goal of the season. But on the same Dallas power play, Loui Eriksson scored to make it 5-2 less than a minute after Gionta’s goal.
• Key Moments: Trailing 1-0 and on the power play, the Canadiens had a shot blocked at the point and Jamie Benn went in alone on Price, scoring to make it 2-0.

• What It Means: Montreal has lost the first two games on their seven-game road trip and sees its record fall to 19-13-2.

• What’s Next: The road trip continues in Carolina on Thursday before a break for Christmas, then the team hits the road again for games against the New York Islanders, Washington Capitals, the Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panthers on New Year’s Eve.


  1. LA Loyalist says:

    Hard to deke w pads on 🙂

  2. terrygain says:

    This is not Carey’s fault. We have a clueless coach who gets a stupid idea in his head and stubbornly sticks to it. There’s no excuse for refusing to play Pouliot on the Gomez  line or insisting on playing 3rd and 4th liners like Moen and Lapierre on the Gomez line

    Did anyone notice how those Maple Leaf fans are such sheep? They support management no matter what. It’s no wonder they haven’t won in 43 years.

  3. lavie says:

    While the rest of the team don’t show up, we do need a brilliant Price.

    Even though the team is still leading the NE Division, we do see some minor problems.

  4. terrygain says:

    It’s definitely you. Price is very good on breakaways. In fact he’s better on breakaways than Jaro, whom I love. 


    Did anyone notice how those Maple Leaf fans are such sheep? They support management no matter what. It’s no wonder they haven’t won in 43 years.

  5. adam76 says:

    Canada club 12 year helps.

  6. DavidKB says:

    Changed the channel at 1- 0 then back again expecting it to be worse, and what do you know…


  7. adam76 says:

    Price has played well this season

  8. habbyone says:

    This is looking ugly and our boy Price needs a vacation.

  9. MTLForever says:

    Nah, FANS don’t stop watching. They go through the hard and best times. 

  10. 23 HABS 23 says:

    It’s just you!  He should not be having to deal with break aways when the HABS are on the power play!!!  You probably think we should try and get Halak back … give your head a shake!

    GO HABS GO! (Let’s go get that elusive 25th Stanley Cup!)

  11. MTLForever says:

    just you, that should of never even happened and he does stop a lot 

  12. 23 HABS 23 says:

    Kimberly2u … I am with ya … I am investing 10:00 minutes into the 2nd period … then it is lights out … can’t stand watching this anymore!  I mean seriously … a shorthanded goal? Actually there were almost 2 on the same power play … GAWD AWFUL!

    I guess I will have to take some more smack talk from the damn Leaf fans (living in Onatrio & being a HABS fan can really suck sometimes).

    I think I will stop watching for a couple of weeks … maybe they will turn things around when I am not looking 🙂  Until then … I am OUT!

    GO HABS GO! (Let’s go get that elusive 25th Stanley Cup!)

  13. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Is it just me or does Price suck on breakaways?

  14. adam76 says:

    only 1 and 9 when not getting the first goal.

  15. Kimberly2u says:

    I can’t watch any more of this…it’s too painful to watch…I don’t know what’s happened to them but they’ve lost what they use to have….I’d love for them to win this game but I have my doubts…they aren’t playing as a team anymore and benching Kostitsyn was a great move…going to have some beer and change the channel

  16. Everlasting1 says:

    The Blues did Habs a favor by cooling Atlanta’s jets tonight 🙂


    “We don’t see things as they are, but as we are.” – Anais Nin

    Don’t pollute the water.

  17. MTLForever says:

    this is ugly

  18. tricolore says:

    They’re playing like they did in February 2 seasons ago. Anyone remember that west coast road trip? Carbo took them bowling. LOL. 

    Sigh, I’m getting tired of Houde saying “quelle chance raté par le canadien, avec le filet desert…”


    Lafleur, coming out rather gingerly on the right side.

  19. adam76 says:

    what an embarrassment.



  20. MTLForever says:

    cant do anything about that goal, great deflection.

  21. adam76 says:

    Are you saying bruce boudreau should still be employed?


    Team will be in 8th after tonight – time to worry.

  22. Bugs says:

    My boy Poolio mighta put a little mustard on that penalty-incurring hot-dog.

    Unquestionably unquestionable, I think I’m

    L. Bugs Potter, esq., Herzog of ze Abominable Habsuchtig Brigade, Markgraf of ze Fearsome Flanell Flausen Flank, und devoted minion of ze Habsbros Order:

  23. adam76 says:

    another loss – wow, Dec sucks.

  24. MTLForever says:

    Let us see if we get a penalty in the last few minutes of the first again? GOHABSGO

  25. Say Ash says:

    Attention East-Coast fans:

    WAKE UP!

    There’s a game about to start!

  26. A. Berke says:

    Fine Thank you.

    Have been mostly reading comments more so than posting though.


    Ali B.

  27. says:

    Holy “the sky is falling”.

    The Caps just lost 8 in a row, I think the Habs can survive a tiny losing streak.

    Very funny though, thanks.

    They Call Me Shane

  28. Born in a Bad Year says:

    In the world of lies, damn lies and statistics…

    I can prove that O’Byrne is the best defensive defenceman in the NHL.

    There are only two defencemen in the NHL that are in the top ten in goal differential both even strength and short handed.  O’Byrne and Meszaros. O’Byrne is better shorthanded and they are tied even strength.


  29. Omit says:

    How did you punish or reprimand your employee when they didn’t perform their duties?

  30. HabsFansince49 says:

    Thank you! Much better articulated than my words. Well said!

    I don’t pretend to be an expert; just a die-hard Habs fan passing my opinion

  31. HabsFansince49 says:

    The average age of these professional athletes is not much higher than the average age of my college students. Further I was also a manager and expected the same work ethic that i adhered to. However, if i did not get it I didn’t punish my employees in the manner suggested here.  I know how the real world functions – thank you 

    I don’t pretend to be an expert; just a die-hard Habs fan passing my opinion

  32. Say Ash says:

    Yeah, but he’d have to win the Dallas game.

  33. punkster says:

    Hey Ali, haven’t chatted with you on a thread in some time. How are you?

    In regards to 49s statement he did say punishment, not teaching, in his comment. As to him being on a tear, well he seems to do that alot. Go on a tear then disappear. I would think management wants to see more consistency and adaptability. Maybe he just doesn’t fit this team.


  34. badbalance says:

    I almost hope we lose enough games for JM to get fired so we can get a more confident coach, this is looking like a repeat of Carbo era.. Line juggling, scapegoats..

  35. Omit says:

    Since when is this a classroom in a school?  This is a highly paid professional athlete who must pay back his employer with the proper work ethic expected of him. Do you really think that the real world functions any other way? 

  36. Say Ash says:

    Apart from Leblanc, who do we have in this Canada-Sweden game?


  37. j2w4habs25 says:

    they better win, dont want to watch them lose another one. Sometimes i dont know about JM

  38. Miltie01 says:

    Why am I suddenly worried now that Maguire is all over Leblanc at the Juniors like a fat kid on a doughnut ?

    Is it just me, or does this bother anyone else ? Maybe it’s just me…….LOL

  39. badbalance says:

    If they won’t be able to score a goal and lose tonight, I blame JM for sitting AK.

  40. mrhabby says:

    ” i don’t know” to quote AK.

  41. j2w4habs25 says:

    they better win tonight, gotta hold that top spot

  42. A. Berke says:

    similar to the PK benching which I do not believe was punishment, simply a method of teaching…

    With all due respect to your opinion, what HFS49 was just saying that this type/method of teaching belonged in the 50’s and it’s the wrong approach now. I agree 100% with HFS49’s assessment.

    Furthermore even though AK may be seen as “inconsistent”, IMO he was very consistent and on a tear until he was yanked away from Pleks/Cammi line in order to benefit G&G who were pretty dismal until then. Frankly I think Gomez is still under performing, although the addition of Max Pac to that line helped open up space for him.

    Utilizing Moen, Lapierre, etc. on G&G line for about 30 games into the season goes to show how stubborn JM is (I’d qualify that more like lacking common sense actually).

    Ali B.

  43. New says:

    Or you could wonder about benching. Is it punishment? I think if you believe that a fellow will only be out a game or two then brought back regardless of how the replacement plays, then yeah it is punishment. Motivation produces success and wins. I doubt punishment has a lasting effect.

    However if it is a case of “We’re not winning with him not producing, so I will try someone else.” that is a different kettle of fish. I would like to think that Eller could carve himself a spot while AK isn’t a good enough fourth or third line player.  But if this is all a mind game then yeah, someone pulled a cuckoo’s Nest and ate a couple of the playing pieces.


  44. badbalance says:

    What kind of message is JM sending out? Well it’s simple “I will not bench any veterans even if they don’t score a single goal all season, instead I will bench the young players as the scapegoats, that should send a message to the whole team somehow”

    Using AK as an example…. When we’re facing one of the top teams in the west. Sure lets play pyatt who has like 3 points instead of AK who is slumping, only becase he is getting moved around lines and hasn’t had a solid line for more than 1 game since he got broken up from Pleks and Cammy…

    I say we trade our whole team for 20 pyatt’s, it will be a hardworking team, I bet we will score 10 goals a game with them..

  45. terrygain says:

    Subban had success until he got the Ryan O’Byrne treatment.


    Did anyone notice how those Maple Leaf fans are such sheep? They support management no matter what. It’s no wonder they haven’t won in 43 years.

  46. terrygain says:

    I agree completely. I wonder how many one on one conversations Martin has with players he thinks are not performing up to par.  Martin’s unnecessary benching of PK for 3 games has undermined his confidence. Martin’s refusal to give Pouliot a much deserved chance on the top 2 lines can’t be doing much for his confidence. Martin’s line combinations are bizarre. Travis Moen and Maxim Lapierre are useful role players. They are not first or second line players. So now Martin is sitting our most talented player, who started the season like a house on fire until he was yanked from the first line. I think AK’s likely played his last game in Montreal.

    When his time in Montreal is finished (which can’t come soon enough for me) Jacques Martin will have an unenviable record of discarded players who couldn’t play for him going on to have much better records with other coaches ( who don’t use his dinosaur methods). 


    Did anyone notice how those Maple Leaf fans are such sheep? They support management no matter what. It’s no wonder they haven’t won in 43 years.

  47. WestHab says:

    Its great coaching for the AHl that you are suggesting, I think. By now though if AK doesn’t play with intensity someone else deserves the spot. The team has lost 4 out of 5. I believe the coach needs to shake it up a bit. When Ak startred out this year his intesity was there. Max Pac has made it difficult for sleepy play by others.

    – Who will be at the Heritage Classic?

  48. punkster says:

    You can’t possibly believe all that crock you just wrote, can you? Do you expect the masses here to believe it, add their support to your comment and thereby validate this stuff? This is nothing but your imagination running wild. Best part is the last line.


  49. scrowe21 says:

    What did Kostitsyn just say on TSN? I missed it because my f**king phone rang the second he started talking.

  50. ed lopaz says:

    why can’t he play with Pleks and Cammy – seemed to be working fine until it was changed to jump start Gomez.

    JM is on thin ice.

    His moves do not build confidence.

    His moves create an environment of fear in Habs youth.

    Confidence is what develops young players into stars.

    OB is a bright young man, and so is Max Pac.

    They have both made it quite clear what they think of JM.

    Others like Pk and Eller have kept their mouths shut – but they feel it. Just look at their faces on the bench.

    Look at Pouliot’s expression on the bench as well.

    There is no joy to play for this team.

  51. AndyF says:

    Excellent coaching strategy.   It’s the difficult, less-travelled road because it requires patience, planning and mostly, energy.   Very few coaches have the kind of zen it takes to be a true teacher.  It’s much easier to get angry and take out the stick.


    Shame, that.



  52. punkster says:

    OK, so my response to him aside, here’s my take on your view:

    Give me a freakin’ break. Take hime aside? Like they did with Kovy? Mollycoddle him? The guy gets paid big freakin dollars to adhere to a system. You can’t follow the plan then hasta la vista baby. Enough with his play hard when I feel like it crap. Sit him until he shows signs of life. Then either trade him or play him.

    But of course, I’m not gonna go and get all uptight about this 😉


  53. MTLForever says:

    Yeah Picard and him were better at the beginning but I think they shouldn’t play together right now

  54. punkster says:

    Had this whole logical, reasoned comment typed out then hit the back button instead. So here it is in a nutshell:

    – you’re the teacher so I bow to your experience

    – however i believe it’s not punishment but rather an attempt to get AK to play the system

    – he has shown on again, off again flashes of solid play but never anything consistent

    – similar to the PK benching which I do not believe was punishment, simply a method of teaching…watch and learn then show us what you have learned

    – the other alternative is that management has just simply given up on AK…but I doubt it…has to do with his inherent talents ans skills and trying to get him to both utilize those skills and play a solid defensive game

    – whatever, just my thoughts


  55. adam76 says:

    Seems logical to me – D parings are important – just ask ryan oburne.

  56. ed lopaz says:

    totally agree with you Habs fansince 49.

    been a fan since the early seventies myself.

    here’s what needs to be done with a guy like AK – in my humble opinion.

    1) take him aside, privately, and explain his role on the team

    2) build his confidence by describing how important his production is to the team

    3) place him with Cammy and Pleky and leave him there for 15-20 games – no matter what

    4) promise a review every 5 games or so – here’s what we like, here’s what we don’t like

    5) after 20 games, quarter season review, more detailed, more specific.

    Funny how Ob was on the ice during the last minute vs Habs when we had the net empty.

    I thought OB had played average at best – shaky, turnovers, lacking confidence

    But Avs coach stuck with him – here’s what we expect – and we will keep playing you even if you do not at first succeed.

    We believe in our young players here on HIO.

    We support PK, we encourage Eller, we were calling for Max Pax to be called up.

    Maybe JM needs to believe in the Habs youth as well.

    It would immediately make us a better team.

    To any one who has been a fan since ’49, I tip my hat to you with the respect you deserve.

    Enjoy tonight’s game!!

  57. habsfan12345 says:

    why cant we pair subban with hal gill or roman hamrlik, subban had success being paired with a more stay-home type dman.

  58. HabsFansince49 says:


    I have been a teacher for most of my professional life.  Punishment by strapping and making students sit in the corner, sometimes kneeling on chalk (try that!) disappeared in the 60’s. Positive reinforcement seemed a better way to go. Tonight’s news about benching AK46 is a sad reflection on Jacques Martin and most NHL coaches who still live in the ’50’s.  JM – it doesn’t work! So soon AK46 like Ribero and O’Bryne (not Komisarek) will be traded off because they could not kneel on chalk in the corner.  JM like Ron Wilson is a dinosaur.  

    I don’t pretend to be an expert; just a die-hard Habs fan passing my opinion

  59. Hoegarden says:

    Hi Sherrie,

    Can you send me your email. I have a couple of pics for you. Thanks.

  60. DavidKB says:

    waf fle 1 |ˈwäfəl; ˈwô-| informalverb [ intrans. ]fail to make up one’s mind : Brian had been waffling over a decision to fire his coach, or wait until he himself gets fired, thereby avoiding the embarrassment of having to sack his friend.

  61. Mikey_39 says:

    I don’t get why we bothered calling up Weber if we’re just going to sit him every game…He was having a great season in Hamilton and we call him up and he does a great job, but we sit him anyway? What’s the point?  I thought for sure that Picard would sit, he’s looked terrible the last couple of games.

  62. secretdragonfly says:

    So, after reading all the posts today, I can safely assume Habs are dooooomed to lose tonight, so I won’t bother watching.  Thank you all you wagon-jumpers, I can use the time I save to wrap Christmas presents.




  63. BC HAB says:

    Picard should also sit. Webber should play.  At least give it a chance.

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