Game 80: Habs blow it on Long Island

Canadiens’ Maxim Lapierre is pushed off the puck by Islanders’ Jack Hillen Tuesday night. Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

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AUDIO: Brian Gionta | Tomas Plekanec | Ryan O’Byrne | Josh Gorges | Jacques Martin

• At a Glance: The Canadiens came out flat against the New York Islanders, trailing 1-0 after 20 minutes and being badly outshot and outplayed, eventually losing 4-3 in a shootout. The Canadiens woke up in the second period with goals by Tomas Plekanec, his 25th, and Brian Gionta, who tied Michael Cammalleri for the team lead with 26 goals. Blake Comeau scored the game’s first goal and Sean Bergenheim tied the game 2-2 only two minutes into the third period and the Islanders were buzzing the net after that, with the Canadiens on their heels a little. But Maxim Lapierre scored a pretty goal four minutes later as he fought off two defenders and went in alone on Martin Biron, beating him with a nice backhand to the roof of the net. But the Isles did not roll over with Frans Nielsen tying the game 3-3 with 2:01 to play. Halak allowed two goals in the shootout, while the Canadiens could not beat Biron. Halak faced 42 shots in 65 minutes of play, making 39 saves, but he was beaten handily in the shootout.

• Key Moments: Halak was left alone in the first period as the Islanders took 15 shots on net, with Halak stopping all but one, while his teammates could muster only five shots on Martin Biron. Halak also made an incredible save on John Tavares in the third period shortly after the Islanders had made it 2-2.

• What It Means: The Canadiens miss a chance to clinch a playoff spot and drop to 39-32-9 for 87 points. The Flyers’ win in Toronto prevents Montreal from clinching.

• What’s Next: Two games remain the regular season, with a visit to the Carolina Hurricanes on Thursday and a home date against the Toronto Maple Leafs to finish the season.

495 Comments

  1. andrewberkshire says:

    Finally a new blog post! Unique situation for the Habs this summer. 

    __________________________________________

    Berkshire on the Habs

  2. Bill J says:

    useless ? Not really… Biased ? not really.  slightly un-applicable to the playoffs… perhaps.

    You don’t need to be rude about it is my point here.

  3. Storm Man says:

    Number 66 would have been booood out of here his first 2 years

  4. mike g says:

    Jerome deserves so much better than how the Flames have treated him over his career….

    They’ve given him nothing, absolute squat. Never had legitimate linemates, never had a decent/good coach to play for, and he always had to take the blame for managerial blunders. Sure they made it to the Cup Finals, but that was once in his long career.

    I don’t follow the Flames much, but Jarome is such a gamer. He scores 30+ goals every year, he’ll fight, hit, play defense and block shots. He’s always involved in charity events and with the community. IMO, he’s the ultimate “complete player”. About 3 years ago, almost all of us were saying he was the best on the planet. He’s only 32 or 33, and now it looks like a train has hit him, probably because he’s done so much for that team and no1 else has. Too bad Calgary has treated such a world class player and person like that.

    If I was him, I’d want out of Cow-town…

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  5. andrewberkshire says:

    Tyler Myers.

  6. Bill J says:

    Yeah I was thinking the same too about the Buffalo game – tough call though.

    But you know how some Halak fans are…. all about the wins… who cares about the team falling apart in front of the goalie. lol

     

  7. matmacat says:

    Like I said, biased and useless. But good idea nonetheless, just doesn’t apply well.

  8. I_SAY_FIGHT says:

    sorry bill i was trying to get it to show up below T-REX

  9. TomNickle says:

    I have no problem saying that if Iginla had Backstrom, or a player who can distribute the puck that effectively, Ovechkin wouldn’t have a Richard Trophy yet.

  10. I_SAY_FIGHT says:

    well i gave it to price b/c of his performance vs buffalo as well ( 40 shots no team support last 2 minutes)
    also when Halak won against Buffalo Vanek and Conolley were missing from the lineup
    i was debating about buffalo when i decided on Price

  11. Bill J says:

    Every game ? lol

  12. Ronan G says:

    Tyler Meyers. No doubt.

    “The NHL was going to test the Stanley Cup for lysteria, but then they realized it hasn’t touch a Maple Leaf product in over 42 years!”

  13. mike g says:

    MAB

    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

  14. SeriousFan09 says:

    Jarome Iginla volunteers to take some of the heat for the Flames playoff status as it is, guess it’s more politic to take the blame yourself than call out your dumb*** GM for taking on Leafs 3rd-liners and not doing anything to put any scorers on your team besides the generally fragile Rene Bourque.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  15. TomNickle says:

    Just to settle it.  I believe that a coach can have an affect on special teams but I’m not willing to use special teams as a bench mark for determining a coach’s success or failure within an organization as you were with Ron Wilson.  

    And yes, if Pens had two wingers who were threats offensively, they would have the best Powerplay in the league.

  16. Bill J says:

    well (and as I said Im a Price fan) when it comes to the topic of playoffs.  a OT loss doesnt matter….

  17. since1988 says:

    the breezer

  18. Bill J says:

    I think it was more based on pts received for the games.

    Price Vs. Buffalo = 3 pts.

    Both Vs. Philly = 2 pts each

     

    Even as a Price fan I agree though, when it comes to the topic of playoffs.  a loss is a loss…  So Buffalo should prolly be “neither” as well.

  19. I_SAY_FIGHT says:

    its based on how many points they got vs. the teams they play how is it bias?
    nevermind you’re probably 4 years old

  20. christophor says:

    well said. i’m not saying you’re wrong, just that its a hard debate. it is conceivable. 

  21. SeriousFan09 says:

    Tyler Myers, his size and ability make him an incredible player that any team would be lucky to have.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  22. JD_ says:

    The AAA games are really high calibre and a pleasure to watch. It is non-stop intensity. Problem is, I’ve got two daughters playing house league and, well, let’s just say it ain’t the same. Can be problematic if the schedules conflict. My wife and I draw straws in secret. Shh.

    I grew up playing soccer for DDO on the West Island. Never got the baseball bug, although had a few friends who played.

  23. adam76 says:

    Doesn’t Kirk run the PowerPlay?

  24. matmacat says:

    Your system is biased. Advantage Price vs Buffalo and Neither vs Philly? And Rangers and Caps no good either. Actually, your system is useless. Sounds like something JM might do.

  25. christophor says:

    i just dont think you’re getting what i’m saying. this is why you keep making comments that aren’t disagreeing with me so much, they’re just unrelated or misunderstanding. also, lets have civilized debate. settle down. you seem to need the occasional hint to settle down from HIO posters.

    its not one or the other. its not JUST because of the coaches. you cant coach without players and you can do a heck of a better job with skilled players. and i’m not arguing that the leafs should have success, i’m arguing that a good coach would not have them suck AS bad in special teams. you can debate the extent of a coach’s influence, but you seem to totally disregard his role. also, you don’t think your weak explanation for pittsburgh isn’t “twisting ideas to suit your argument”? coaching is also putting the right players in the right places, which could help for pitt. according to your reasoning, a winger would rocket them from bottom to top. dont tell me gonchar, crosby, and malkin should be at the bottom in %.

    and what about metro? take away his 10 PP goals and we’re way down the chart for PP%. thank JM for that. when a player does well, its skill. the coach that put him there in the right situations did the COACHING. these are not working against each other. what do you think a coach coaches? PLAYERS. but no matter who you have, you can tweak it to make it better (or less bad), by trial and error if nothing else.

    the habs PP got progressively better, from 28th to 1st, BEFORE markov returned, and we’re gone down since, though just a little, though not because of him – just showing its not as simple as you make it to be. a coach can affect special teams that quickly, not 5 on 5. in fact, 5 on 5 suffers when coaches keep being let go. its not just the coach. its the coach recognizing what has been successful (markov and how he’s been used) as well as new ideas (metro, MAB, cammi) to replace old ones that are gone. 

    for the leafs, which was the point, coaching needs to take preeminence where there is little talent. look at edmonton, that should be what the leafs do: terribly but their “good” coach should have impact here and there to make their special teams stats not as bad as their place in the standings. 

    i see we wont agree that coaches have quicker influence on special teams and, for teams like the leafs especially, a more immediate influence. thanks for the debate, but i’ve been procrastinating too long and need to jet.

    peace.

  26. Storm Man says:

    Tyler Myers case closed;)

  27. Malreg says:

    Shea Webber.

  28. TomNickle says:

    Mine is Shea Weber

  29. Storm Man says:

    Nathen Horton will be up for grabs this summer.

  30. naweed235 says:

    Mike green

  31. pmaraw says:

    Chris Chelios

  32. TomNickle says:

    Forget cap hits and salaries.  If you could have one defesenman playing for this team for the next 5-10 years, who would it be?

    Unacceptable answers: P.K. Subban, Duncan Keith and Drew Doughty(just to make it interesting)

  33. Say Ash says:

    Yup, hockey’s popularity shrinks by one player because some Canuck had a choice to try out cricket. Nothing better about either sport.

  34. Storm Man says:

    That is like the odd kid from Canada taking up Cricket.

  35. Storm Man says:

    His chip goal was sick

  36. SeriousFan09 says:

    1. Yes

    2. Devils, Martin F. Brodeur, he might be worn out against other teams but he’ll do his best against us as usual.

    3. Coyotes, the idea of losing to those guys and seeing the Phoenix Effin Coyotes win the Cup gives me night terrors.

    4. Habs Versus Red Wings (Original Six matchup!)

    5. Capitals

    6. Ovechkin

    7. Yes

    8. Cammy or Gionta

    9. Philly

    10. Yes, I believe.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  37. Say Ash says:

    Exactly, but if indoor rinks were cheap, the odd Brazilian just may take up skating.

  38. TomNickle says:

    1. No, Rangers beat the Sabres.

    2. Pittsburgh, battle tested, to be the Champ you have to beat the Champ.  Could be their last playoffs together too.  They will really want it.

    3. Detroit, their goaltending hasn’t had to be good for them to dominate a generation.

    4. Pittsburgh and Detroit, for the 3rd straight season.

    5. Detroit, everybody will load up on Caps and Pens.

    6. Datsyuk

    7. Yes

    8. Brian Gionta

    9. Philly

    10. Nope

  39. Say Ash says:

    Nothing to do with hockey. Given the forum, it’s the example I chose. All I’m saying is that if a kid had the resources to choose more sports than simply kicking a ball around the field or bouncing a ball on some asphalt, it’s conceivable that the popularity of the big sports would wane.

    Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy watching and playing soccer. But proponents of soccer and it being popular due to its inherent qualities don’t account for its economics.

  40. joeybarrie says:

    We have already clinched a spot……. IMO

    Washington Capitals. Mostly cause I live in DC and I really dont want to hear how they beat us.

    San Jose, at some point they have to do well in the post season. The odds are on their side.

    Washington Capitals vs Chicago Blackhawks.  Maybe NJD SJS.

    I dont know

    Yes

    Gionta

    Boston

    YES, we can win it all, we are in the playoffs, But i can also win the mega millions tomorrow, IF I buy a ticket.

    There may be other teams, but only ONE Club De Hockey…


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