Game 78: Canadiens move into sixth place

Flyers goalie Brian Boucher stops a shot by Canadiens’ Brian Gionta during first-period action Friday night. Ron Cortes/Philadelphia Inquirer/MCT

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AUDIO: Dominic Moore | Tomas Plekanec | Jaro Halak | Jacques Martin

• At a Glance: Jaroslav Halak made 35 saves, including 14 in the third period, as the Canadiens weathered a Flyers storm in Philadelphia to hold on for a 1-0 win on Friday night. Tomas Plekanec scored his 24th goal of the season 9:25 into the first period on a nice pass from Andrei Kostitsyn from behind the Flyers net. Plekanec was left pretty much alone and was able to put the puck into the open side of the net behind Brian Boucher. The Canadiens, holding on to the one-goal lead, mustered only 3 shots on Boucher in the third period as the Flyers, who had played on Wednesday night, dominated the final 20 minutes of play. Halak withstood the Flyers onslaught for his fourth shutout of the season.

• Key Moments: The Flyers throught they had tied the game in the third period, but the goal was waved off because the puck was hit with a high stick.

• What It Means: The Canadiens move into sixth spot in the Eastern Conference with 84 points and a 38-32-8 record for 84 points. They are two points up on the Flyers and Bruins, but Boston has a game in hand.

• What’s Next: The Canadiens have four games remaining in the regular season starting Saturday night at home against the Sabres. They hit the road for games against the Islanders and Hurricanes next Tuesday and Thursday, respectively, before warpping up the season against the Maple Leafs on April 10.


  1. Eliisa says:

    I like it! Only one little tweak needs to be made.

    Halak gets the W. For the record, I too figured Price would’ve been in net after his solid performance against the Canes.

  2. Favorite Son says:

    They asked a whole bunch of questions like “Who’s the most hated player in the league?”. I think Avery was the first choice for that one…

  3. Eliisa says:

    Haha, I appreciate your strategy. Do you pour more according to the score of the game?

  4. light_n_tasty says:

    Here’s my prediction from yesterday, which, it appears, is already wrong:

    Prediction for tomorrow:

    5-2 Habs;

    Cammy 2 goals;

    PP 2 goals;

    1 stinker goal on whoever is in net for Philly;

    Price gets the W.

  5. Eliisa says:

    Chuck, could you be a little more precise? I think the details are too vague ;). I don’t want it to be a close game. While it is exhilarating to watch I want to sit back and enjoy the win, knowing we will be seeded sixth. Sixth to tenth is way too tight. Especially with Boston breathing down our necks and playing Toronto tomorrow. I’ll take your score but hope it isn’t as back and forth.

  6. Favorite Son says:

    Oh yeah I forgot about Missaen! Where is he now? So we can start speculating on how early they’re going to bring him up and ruin his career.

  7. Eliisa says:

    Based on last night? Ouch. Raycroft should’ve been in net.

  8. Storm Man says:

  9. notbigbird says:

    There’s not much point in this and most surveys. In this case, it would be correct if it said overpaid rather than overrated. Otherwise, all it means is that the players think they rate him correctly while the rest of us think he’s great. In fact, as this site will bear out, most fans don’t think he’s great. Most of us seem to think he’s okay but overpaid. Everybody simply thinks that everybody else thinks he’s great. (Okay, I think I’ve lost track and have to jump off this merry-go-round. lol )

  10. Eliisa says:

    My thoughts exactly.

  11. Tis Himself says:

    Stevie Begin was amazing in his ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in big games!

  12. shuttle-lemaire-lafleur says:

    P.K. Subban would be in the lineup today and do quite well in Habs jersey if we hadn’t already sunk 21 million into a defensive core that has no jam. Other than Markov we are inept on the backend. P.K.would generate offense on the PP and 5 on 5 right now.

  13. Storm Man says:

    Lot’s of Gray Goose and pray for a good win.

  14. Storm Man says:

    I would think so but it was a Laff that was number 1 lol

  15. Chuck says:

    Flyers get the first one, Habs reply, Flyers get a second, and Habs tie it up again, and add the go-ahead midway through the third. They then hold on and pot one into an emply net before Philly gets one late, again with the goalie pulled in favour of the extra attacker. 4-3 final.


    Cheer for the crest on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

  16. SeriousFan09 says:

    Bit of professional jealousy I suspect over his monster contract.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  17. Storm Man says:

    Sports Illustrated did the survey, All of the UFA’S that came here this year said the reason was that Gomez was here. I would bank none of his current teammates would say he is over rated

  18. matraque says:

    Hey, do you have the link to that survey?  I thought Luongo was the most over rated…


    Komisarek: 0 – 4 – 4 (-9)

  19. Storm Man says:

    Sports Illustrated did the survey, All of the UFA’S that came here this year said the reason was that Gomez was here. I would bank none of his current teammates would say he us over rated

  20. Eliisa says:

    Habs must have fire in their blood and something to prove after that sad display against Carolina. I am going to say they win 4-2. Cammalleri and Pouliot are both going to get one.

    Anyone else have some thoughts?

  21. ooder says:

    please that guy can’t even carry Jassen Missaein’s jock


    “I like what I’m seeing right now,” assessed Markov. “We’re not perfect, but we’re trying to be.”

  22. Eliisa says:

    Nice work, Sunshine. I absolutely agree. It’s simply convenient for angry fans to blame the goalie – he is only one man after all.

  23. SeriousFan09 says:

    Hey! Knock that off! It’s all about Robert Mayer in the ECHL, Sanford and Desjardins are being unfairly favoured in Hamilton while this guy gets ignored!


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  24. ooder says:

    another one of you dirty desjardins fan boys… give it a rest… only Sanford will take us to the promised land


    “I like what I’m seeing right now,” assessed Markov. “We’re not perfect, but we’re trying to be.”

  25. Eliisa says:

    Interesting, I am surprised they would ask the players this. I wonder how many are current or former teammates.

  26. SeriousFan09 says:

    Boullion scared me, every time I saw him pass in his own zone.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  27. SeriousFan09 says:

    Was there a question about which GM is the biggest blowhard? Toronto could finally come in No. 1 for something.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  28. ckckckc says:

    is that sarcasm?


    ~live and let live~ GO HABS GO!


  29. Storm Man says:

    272 NHL players surveyed said Scott Gomez is the 3rd most over rated player in the NHL guess we need to boooo him more

  30. Favorite Son says:

    Yeah guys, besides, it’s Cedrick Desjardins that will be the next Patrick Roy.

  31. habfan01 says:

    I mean an internet feed in english

  32. pablojinko says:


    its friday night, so I can foresee lots of Pierre McGuire’s Drinking Game been played across town

  33. Storm Man says:

    CSN HD is fun hearing the Flyers guys talk lol 

  34. Robert L says:

    You’re confusing Begin and Boullion with John Ferguson. If you think either of them ever scared anyone, I think you are mistaken.

  35. pablojinko says:

    The problem is “Jaro” is 1-3 in the last 4 games, and I say “Jaro” because the W-L stat is, imo, illogical and unfair, to say the least… truth is the team is 1-5 in the last 6… Jaro is nowhere near to look as two months ago, he’s letting in some softies, and more important, the team has found a way to lose with him in nets :S… Today is a nice opportunity to bounce back, today we will see how he handle the pressure, but again, if the team keeps playing in crappy-mode, Jaro’s going to have a tough night even if he pulls a ’93 Patrick Roy

  36. christophor says:

    Pierre McGuire will be speaking some sort of language on TSN

  37. ooder says:

    guys… all this price vs halak talk is ridiculous…

    this isn’t price or halak vs the flyers, it’s the habs vs the flyers.

    there have been very few games were goaltending was an issue for us. If we score only 1 goal then it doesn’t matter who is in nets.

    The team needs to paly well… our goalies always do


    “I like what I’m seeing right now,” assessed Markov. “We’re not perfect, but we’re trying to be.”

  38. habaholic68NJ says:

    Timo.  My only disagreement with your post is the order of the problems: JM is first.

  39. g says:

    sebastien caron is philly’s seventh goalie of the year.


    “Long before I ever wore the jersey, I wore the jersey.” Dryden

  40. habfan01 says:

    Anyone know if there is an english feed for the game, or only the RDS french?

  41. jimmy shaker says:



  42. habs03 says:

    I think Jaro is the right choice tonight, I was thinking Price would play tomorrow since he has done better than jaro vs the Sabres, but its a shame that JM won’t play him because its a home game. Man do we know how to ruin young players. And people want to play up Subban, what are people going to say when Subban is going to do a spin around at the blue line and give up the puck and it leads to a breakway goal at the end of the game. We have no patience with our young guys, and then we ask ourselfs why we don’t devople our players well. just my imo.

  43. Olay Olay Olay says:

    I don’t see how playing Halak at all at this point is a bad strategy, his record speaks for itself. It doesn’t seem to matter how price plays, unless he plays superhuman and stop ever puck every game, we lose. This team play like crap in front of him night in night out.

    I’m not the biggest Price fan by any means but I feel bad for the kid, this team’s defence and coach should be ashamed the way they’ve played around him.

    Dido for the brain dead fans who booed him last game, do us all a favour and stay home next time.

  44. ed lopaz says:

    you’re probably right .

  45. christophor says:

    another perk.

    i think they would do fine.

  46. ed lopaz says:

    ok – interesting – the gill and OB pair could sub for the 76’ers game. 🙂

  47. Habsforlife 1959 says:

    More like the Habs will be stone by the Broad Street Bullies and be glad to get out of town from such a whipping in all departments TONIGHT. Expect a hard hitting game with Midgets against the Giants. Ouch!!!

  48. ed lopaz says:

    “Philly is going to bang and crash the nat all night long”

    if philly bangs and crashes and does NOT take penalties – we lose.

    if philly bangs and crashes and our power play is anemic – we lose.

    if philly bangs and crashes and we do NOT bang and crash back at them – we lose.

    this is why I can not understand the logic of getting rid of Bouillon, and Begin.

    I’m very concerned that we will get physically pounded tonight, and if our Power Play can not respond, we will get knocked right out of the building.

    (not fight, I’m talking hit cleanly)


  49. christophor says:

    Markov-Spacek (The intended pairing from the start; a solid #1 pair where both can contribute offensively but have the +/- to show they’re responsible; plus Spacek gets back to his side of the rink).

    Hamrlik-Gorges (Hamrlik plays better when counted on for offense and Gorges is solid)

    Gill-O’Byrne (Shut down line that sees 10-15 min tops)



    These should have been the pairings since Markov’s return

  50. Storm Man says:

    Are you willing to do the same if he does not?

  51. savethepuck says:

    I origionally thought they would split the back to back and if so Carey tonight Jaro tomorrow would of been thwe wise choice.  I assume by starting Jaro tonight he plans to play him tomorrow if he wins ( the good ol win your in coaching genius ), if he plans on playing Carey the 2nd of the b2b, he’s made a mistake.  I agree Carey is better on the road because he doesn’t have to put up with the bs.


  52. ed lopaz says:

    don’t get me started with PK – I think I must have posted at least 20 times about this.

    let’s just accept that its not happening; nothing we can do.

    I’m fine with other pairings, as long as markov gets going.

    do you remember how many points he racked up when he first came back from his injury.

    some of those points were when he came off his position on the blueline and actually went “back door” on the D.

    markov can be a brilliant player – but he needs to have the support behind him to take some chances.

    i’m not sure OB is strong enough yet.

  53. Habsforlife 1959 says:

    Put Price in net for the Flyers and who would win tonight? Halak or Price?

  54. J. Ambrose says:

    Will we see you here admitting you were wrong after Jaro stones them tonight? 

  55. Storm Man says:

    Mine would be

    Markov  Gorges

    Spacek OB

    PK Gill

  56. jimmy shaker says:

    Just to let you know that Jaro is going to get the next five games in a row…….There is no other option at this point in the season.  The almighty W, says so…..and Jaro and the team get those more than Carey and the team do.  NO slagging to Carey just the facts!


  57. Storm Man says:

    It has nothing to do with Karma. Martin is just a bad coach nothing more nothing less. I hope we can score more then 1 goal tonight

  58. ed lopaz says:

    well – i think i would break up the spacek hamrlik couple.

    maybe put groges with markov, and let markov go with the puck more and joint the rush.

    so you could have

    markov and gorges

    spacek and gill

    hamrlik and OB (would not play too much; much less than they are playing right now)

    what do you think?

    who would you put with markov so he could stimulate more offence??

  59. Habsforlife 1959 says:

    Price should have played Philly and Halak against Buffalo since Price lost the last time in Buffalo. Price is better on the road and Halak is better at home. We ahve not got a hoping hell with Halak in nets tonight. Philly is going to bang and crash the nat all night long. Halak will see nothing but red light behind him tonight. I guess Martin wants Price back in nets to face the fans and Sabres again while we all listen to the boo birds all night long. I guess Martin is trying his damness to run Price out of town to save his own ***. Bad Karma in the coaching decision to play Halak tonight.

  60. Harditya_CareyPrice says:

    Brian Boucher expected to start. Caron just a back-up.

  61. homerbowen says:

    OK who do you suggest?

  62. ed lopaz says:

    I posted this on another thread – but there were no further comments – maybe my comment doesn’t warrant any of your attention, but I will post it here any way. 🙂

    one way to generate more offence is by getting your D implicated in the offence.

    that’s why MOBILITY has become the catch phrase for D-men these days.

    Markov is excellent – world class – but he IS LIMITED by the fact that his partner is a #5 d-man playing along side him.

    Larry Robinson had Serge Savard next to him (or next to each other, however you want it).

    MARKOV NEEDS TO GET MORE IMPLICATED IN THE OFFENCE – pair him with someone else who can hold down the fort while Markov gets involved.

    have you seen how Markov plays 4 on 4?

    we have one the top 10, MOBILE d-men in the world in our lineup.


  63. Harditya_CareyPrice says:

    Solid post – I definitely agree with you Timo.

  64. homerbowen says:

    It doesn’t matter who is in goal as that is our only strong point on this team.

    When are those super studs going to start scoring? We have a few multi million dollar  players up front who lack the ability on a regular basis to earn even half their paycheque. I ask that they stand up and earn their keep!!!! OMG you say they are already standing……………does that mean none are at least 6′ tall???????????? Ok then it looks like this is another write-off year until we grow bigger.

    When the door closes at season’s end I hope our enthusiastic coach is going thru it for the last time.

  65. showey47 says:

    yet your fav. players are gionta and the road runner?

  66. JIMVINNY says:

    I think that by playing Halak tonight, Martin can Force Price down the fans throats tomorrow.  Kind of an FU for booing him.

  67. gp52 says:

    i think cammalleri has been talking to george laraque and doesn’t really feel like scoring goals or really even

    skating anymore ,he just  wants to help destitue animals

  68. gp52 says:

    you forgot small

  69. light_n_tasty says:

    So, I used to be pretty annoyed that the only thing we talked about on these boards was goaltending.  Not anymore.  Goaltending is pretty much the only thing on this team worth talking about.

  70. somerslovesthehabs says:

    I know you usually take alot of heat Timo but you nailed it today kid, lazy applies only some guys though, we know who you mean

  71. Storm Man says:

    MARTIN  case closed

  72. HUDSONHAB says:

    It doesn’t matter who is in net; If the mistakes and lack of effort keeps up the Habs won’t win.

    There haven’t really been that many bad goals (usually against Price and at the worst possible time) but there has been many mistakes and many stretches of lackadaisical play.


  73. mbplekfan says:

    The bulldogs are playing very well. Unfortunately most of the offense comes from Desharnais and Trotter. Neither of whom could make the slightest difference to our team.

    PK is NHL ready and Desjardins could probably handle an NHL back up roll. Carle might press for a position next year but we have too many d already.

    Nice to have a good farm team but its better to have the right prospects in place.

  74. slapshot777 says:

    I guess Pyatt goes back in the lineup tonight. Why the Habs have kept Maxwell up and not giving him any playing time is beyond me. Wouldn’t it be wise to send him back down to the Dogs and let him play rather than be watching hockey from the press box.


    To you from failing hands we throw the torch, be yours to hold it high.

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