Gretzky trade helped spark Lafleur’s comeback from retirement

Friday marks the 25th anniversary of the biggest trade in hockey history, when Wayne Gretzky was dealt from the Edmonton Oilers to the Los Angeles Kings.

The Gretzky deal had a huge impact on hockey and also played a role in Guy Lafleur coming out of retirement.

About a week after the Kings acquired Gretzky, Lafleur, who had retired in 1984 - 19 games into his 14th NHL season with the Canadiens – asked the Kings for an invitation to their first training camp with the Great One.

“If I wasn’t in good enough shape, I wouldn’t waste anybody’s time,” Lafleur, who was 36 at the time, told the Los Angeles Times, adding that he had been thinking about a comeback for a couple of months.

“L.A. was my first phone call,” Lafleur added at the time. “It’s a good place to play, especially now that Wayne is there.”

Rogie Vachon, the Kings’ general manager at the time, said he was intrigued by Lafleur’s proposal, but added: ”I don’t know if we’re ready to commit ourselves. A guy like this would be expensive, and we can only go so far, budget-wise. We’ll talk to them later this week.”

The Kings took a pass on Lafleur, but he did make a comeback during the 1988-89 season with the New York Rangers, posting 18-27-45 totals in 67 games. He would go on to play two more seasons with the Quebec Nordiques before retiring again for good.

Below is a column Michael Farber wrote for The Gazette in the summer of 1988 about Lafleur and a possible comeback following the Gretzky trade:

The Trade: 25 years since Gretzky left Edmonton, Edmonton Journal

Bettman: Gretzky trade brought credibility to NHL in U.S., montrealgazette.com

Gretzky’s trade still creating ripple effect 25 years later, montrealgazette.com

Rare photos of Wayne Gretzky, si.com

Photo gallery of Montreal Canadiens Legends, si.com

(Postmedia News file photo)

Who are we to say Lafleur shouldn’t make comeback?

PUBLISHED IN THE GAZETTE ON AUG. 17, 1988

MICHAEL FARBER
THE GAZETTE

Guy Lafleur comes back, or Godhead Revisted.

The first reaction to the news is: Who’s next?

Gordie Howe?

Plato?

“I think my retirement from philosophy some millenia ago was a tad premature. I’ve seen a lot of the younger fellows do quite well – your Rousseau, your Hobbes, your Nietzsche – and at the risk of being immodest, I’d like to think there are some pretty profound thoughts still floating around these old synapses. If any school of thought figures I can help, I’d be delighted to strap on my thinking cap for another two seasons or so.”

Sad? Of course not. Infinitely sadder than the thought of a 37-year-old Lafleur taking a fourth-line shift in Los Angeles or Detroit or wherever is the prospect of the Demon Blond stewing for the rest of his life over having left the game before his time.

He is a person, not merely a personage.

Lafleur has the right to exorcise the personal demons that haunted his retirement from the moment he said “I quit” on Nov. 26, 1984.

Lafleur was 33 then. His career had been in gentle decline since the 1979-80 season, the last time he scored more than 30 goals in a season.

He thinks playing on a line with Wayne Gretzky in Los Angeles would allow him to score 30 again, and in what appears to be a gross act of self-deception, this is the one line of thought that makes perfect sense; John Ziegler and Pee-Wee Herman could pot 30 if they were Gretzky’s wingers.

The fact remains that in his final 23 playoff games for the Canadiens, Lafleur scored two goals. The player who used to lift wonderful Montreal teams on his slender shoulders had to be carried in the 1980s.

But Lafleur was never a burden because he was Lafleur, an ornament to his age and an icon in a city where the Morenz-Richard-Beliveau-Lafleur succession is treated with a reverence befitting the secular religion of Quebec.

Lafleur owes Montreal nothing now.

His contemplated comeback desecrates nothing and no one.

Lafleur paid his debt in 13-plus seasons – most brilliant, some ordinary – in which he illuminated the sport and reflected glory on those who watched it.

His responsibility is strictly to himself, and if the sight of Lafleur laboring down the wing in some garage-league uniform deprives you of cherished memories of a once dashing right winger taking a hockey game and making it his own toy, it is your problem, not his.

The sports fan takes a proprietary interest in his heroes that is not his to take.

A Guy Lafleur or a Willie Mays or Joe Namath at the height of art can’t be trapped like a bug in amber and trotted out of the footlocker of our mind every time we want to feel young again.

The decision to quit – no matter what the endeavor – should be a question of personal preference and dignity, not something as vague as a notion an athlete “should know when it’s time” or something as specific as age 65.

Lafleur has chafed ever since retiring, huffy over the feeling the Canadiens rushed him to that judgment.

As Serge Savard, Canadiens managing director and Lafleur’s former teammate, said yesterday, “An athlete never says it’s over in his heart.”

If Lafleur thinks he can dipsy-doodle for Detroit the way he did for the Petro-Canada all-stars, if the Red Wings will pay a King’s ransom in salary, and if there are enough ticket-buying suckers around to underwrite it, then everyone agrees, right?

Lafleur would be the first person in the history of the league who might have to skip his own induction to the Jockey Hall of Fame so he can go to training camp.

The best part about the Lafleur comeback is it would occur outside Montreal, outside Quebec.

There is too much history here for Lafleur to return to the scene of his prime.

“For us, it would be a step backwards,” Savard said.

“He was a fine player who ran into difficulties at the end.

“You get a guy who doesn’t score in 20 games in a row and you’re used to seeing him score 50 or 60, well, the standards were different.

“I understand why he thinks he can still play.

“He’s on our retirement list, but we won’t stand in his way. But I haven’t heard from any teams or from either Lafleur or his agent.”

The Kings say all the talk has come from Lafleur, that they have no interest.

Lafleur always has been one of the blessed, without guile, a man with the childlike tendency to say whatever was on his mind, especially after a second drink.

But when he said he wants to try again if he is allowed to “play his game” – whatever that might be after a break of almost four years – he spoke out of a heartfelt conviction.

The Lafleur comeback is a return of the naif. Godspeed.

391 Comments

  1. lakechamplain says:

    About the Wayne Gretzky retirement features: Enough Already!
    Dog days of August, suggest some of you guys might take some days off from here to rest up for the months ahead.
    But if you want a taste of hockey news here’s a link to a story from Lake Placid at the Junior Evaluation Camp. It’s about Sweden using it’s power play to nail the USA 4-0 in a game; Canadian’s fans might enjoy the comments regarding Jacob de la Rose and Sebastian Colberg(mentioned tho he didn’t play). The nice aspect relative to the Canadians a few years from now was that it highlighted the puck control that the Swedes used to great effectiveness. That’s an aspect of the Canadians that has been lacking for a while and these 2 guys(and some kid named Galchenyuk) might make for some exciting moments at the Bell Centre. Hey, dreams are cheap.
    http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=679821

  2. SmartDog says:

    I don’t follow the CFL much, but could part of the Als problem be Calvillo?

    The guy is what – 50?

    ————————————-
    Can you smell what the dog is sniffin?

    • doc359 says:

      Sometimes you have to learn to let go.
      I unfortunately know that will be the case soon with my Pats and TB

    • JF says:

      I think the Als’ problem is that Jim Popp (the GM) has made some very bizarre personnel decisions, not only this year but also last. Last year he hired as defensive coordinator a guy who had had little success working with defence (Jeff Reinbold). This year he hired as coach an American college coach who had never posted a winning record and as offensive coordinator a guy who most recently coached the Arizona Cardinals’ offence to be among the worst in the NFL. There seems to have been little justification for any of these appointments. Calvillo is certainly getting on, but he hasn’t had a chance to get comfortable in a stable offensive system this year.

      This season will be a total loss, but even if the Als deal with their coaching situation (i.e., get more competent people), their problems are likely just beginning. They have not groomed anyone to succeed Calvillo, and their two rookies, Josh Neiswander and I forget the other guy’s name, are not getting any playing time – by contrast with some of the other teams, Toronto and Calgary for example. So there will be some lean years.

  3. Ian Cobb says:

    24 cups–
    Do you remember Cookie Gilchrist?

    PS–are you booked at the hotel yet.?
    Summit game tickets, News, Pictures and comments
    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Montreal-Canadiens-We-Are-Fans-Summit/197390760316125

  4. Strummer says:

    If you think is’s a slow news day here check what’s making the front pages in Toronto.
    Kingston Front’s GM Doug Gilmour traded his kid-

    “Jake Gilmour and goaltender Blake Richard were sent to Niagara along with a conditional 12th-round pick in the OHL draft in exchange for a 12th-round pick in the 2015 OHL draft. Mr. Gilmour had selected his son, who played junior B hockey in Brampton, last season, in the eighth round of the 2012 OHL draft.’

    Question- is a 12th round pick in the OHL draft the equivalent to a “bag of pucks”?
    ______________________________________________________
    “It’s just an opinion – I could be wrong”

    • doc359 says:

      Wait, they traded 2 players AND a 12th rounder, for ANOTHER 12th rounder ?

      How bad are these kids?

      • Chris says:

        They are often doing these types of trades to get the kids into a better development situation.

        The OHL isn’t professional hockey. The teams will, generally, accommodate the players if they want to move elsewhere for personal or professional development reasons.

  5. Chris says:

    As Habs fans, we are familiar with the ripple effect of Patrick Roy’s greatness in terms of goaltenders from Quebec. A generation of young goaltending stars cited Roy as a role model of theirs: Brodeur, Garon, Théodore, Giguère, Luongo, Fleury, Biron, Fiset, Thibault, etc.

    One thing I’ve noticed of late is the number of above average to elite defencemen that are now coming out of Sweden. Is this the Nicklas Lidström effect? I understand that there were some great Swedish defencemen before Lidstöm, most notably Börje Salming, but I don’t remember this kind of defensive depth for a European country.

    Sweden has long been known for producing some outstanding offensive players, but they have really ramped up their production of top young defencemen over the past decade.

    At 32, a guy like Niklas Kronwall probably predates any legacy effect of Lidstrom, but check out some of the up-and-comers now:

    Tobias Enström – 29 years old
    Alexander Edler – 27 years old
    Niklas Hjalmarsson – 26 years old
    Erik Karlsson – 23 years old
    Victor Hedman – 22 years old (I think he’s going to break out in a very big way this coming season)
    Oliver Ekmann-Larsson – 22 years old
    Adam Larsson – 20 years old
    Jonas Brodin – 20 years old

    With top prospects such as Tim Erixon (22), David Rundblad (22), Oscar Klefbom (20) set to join the above guys, Sweden looks to have their deepest blue-line group ever, and it is a group that is rapidly improving as the players gain experience.

    They aren’t quite there with Canada or the U.S. yet, but they aren’t far behind.

    • Maritime Ron says:

      Chris, you can add Erik Gustafsson (24) Carl Gunnarsson 26), Jonathan Ericsson, (29)…
      Last year, there were 21 Swedish born Dmen that played at east 1 NHL game – 18 of those played most or the season.

      http://www.nhl.com/ice/playerstats.htm?season=20122013&gameType=2&team=&position=D&country=SWE&status=&viewName=summary

      • Chris says:

        For sure. I was leaning towards guys that are either impact defencemen on their teams or who have the potential to be that type of defender.

        Karlsson has a Norris Trophy, and Ekman-Larsson finished 4th in this year’s voting. Hedman is going to be in the mix for the Norris Trophies moving forwards…he needed time to grow into that immense frame of his.

        Brodin and Hjalmarsson are both solid defencemen that can eat a lot of minutes. Enström is an exceptional power play quarterback.

        Ericsson is an interesting one…he plays a lot of minutes and is a good defender. But I struggle to include him with the other guys for some reason, even if he might be as good or better than a guy like Hjalmarsson.

        • Maritime Ron says:

          I agree with you concerning Hedman. He was a 2nd overall in 2009 sandwiched between Tavares and Duchene.

          Perhaps they allowed him to play too quick with the big club – then since Roloson had his run, Tampa had goalies that couldn’t stop a beachball…and we all know that hurts confidence.

          Didn’t get to see much of young Brodin but is he that good or was it playing with Suter?
          In the playoffs he was 1st Unit PK and 2nd Unit PP.
          Extremely impressive for the then 19 year old

          • Chris says:

            I haven’t seen enough of Brodin as I would like to comment. So I can only base it on what I’ve read of him, which has been quite glowing.

            He was a highly rated prospect coming out of his draft year (Hockey’s Future still has him as their 22nd highest rated prospect), so there clearly is some buzz. That he could step in immediately and play so many minutes in a variety of situations is impressive.

            The offence isn’t there yet, but it should come. The administration of Sweden’s Olympic team will be watching his continued development very closely this season.

      • B says:

        Half of those 22 Swedish Dmen are under 200 lbs:

        http://www.nhl.com/ice/playerstats.htm?fetchKey=20132ALLDADSWE&sort=player.weight&viewName=bios

        Interestingly, only 43 or the 144 Canadian NHL Dmen are under 200 lbs.

        –Go Habs Go!–

        • Chris says:

          One of the things to remember about European players is that the NHL has a gentleman’s agreement to not poach too heavily when it comes to role players.

          So you will see the skill players come over to North America, but you don’t see similar percentages on the third and fourth lines or on the third pairing for defence. This is where you frequently find the biggest guys.

    • H.Upmann says:

      I wonder (randomly) if traditions of larger ice surface, mixed with puck possession ideology, and a decades of experience vs arch foes like Russia or Finland have developed a sort of defensemen training grounds for Sweden

  6. Strummer says:

    Now that JM is in Pittsburgh will he become “Jack” Martin like MT became “Mike” Therrien?

    ______________________________________________________
    “It’s just an opinion – I could be wrong”

  7. frontenac1 says:

    Play for the tie except in playoffs and then OT until a winner. It worked for over 50yrs and no one complained. Soccer shootouts my arse. Bettman is the Sorcerer”s Apprentice.

    • Strummer says:

      How about 10 minutes of OT and if no-one scores then Rock,Paper,Scissors?

      ______________________________________________________
      “It’s just an opinion – I could be wrong”

  8. Timo says:

    I feel this is going to be a boring day. Work on friday… wtf is that about.

  9. HabFanSince72 says:

    OK here’s one for your spare mental CPU cycles on this lazy Friday.

    Are Habs fans an ethnic group?

    Here’s how wikipedia defines ethnicity:

    “Ethnicity or ethnic group is a socially defined category. These categories may be based on common cultural heritage, shared ancestry, history, homeland, language or dialect, and possibly other aspects such as religion, mythology and ritual, cuisine, dressing style, physical appearance, etc.”

    Socially defined? Check.

    Common cultural heritage? Check.

    Shared history? Check.

    Mythology? Are you kidding me? Check in bold type.

    Ritual? Check.

    Dress style? The sainted red, white and blue.

    I submit to you that we as Habs fans form an ethnicity, with shared myths and rituals, and that we should immediately petition the UN for recognition.

  10. Bill says:

    Bylsma on thin ice with the Count scribbling over his shoulder?

    • SmartDog says:

      They must’ve brought Martin in to inject some passion into the organization. That should fix things.

      ————————————-
      Can you smell what the dog is sniffin?

      • 24 Cups says:

        He’s probably there to teach defensive play. God help Crosby and Malkin.

        • doc359 says:

          Crosby could probably learn some strong defense, he isn’t terrible as is. Malkin I don’t see turning into the next toews

          • B says:

            Toews was a +28 last season on a Blackhawks team that was a +45

            Crosby was a +26 last season on a Penguins team that was a +35 (Malkin was a +5)

            –Go Habs Go!–

        • Chris says:

          Martin’s defensive coaching didn’t hurt Hossa or Alfredsson.

          Pittsburgh’s forwards often treat defence like a dirty word. If Martin can help clean that up, God help the rest of the Prince of Wales conference! :)

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Motivational speaker?

      • Chrisadiens says:

        You HAVE to do your JM impression for the guys at the summit. Its tremendous. Lol.

        Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

    • on2ndthought says:

      He will provide some tactical resources. Bylsma was bad out coached tactically by Julien. He needs help, JM is quite strong in positioning players and in match-ups (except for Gomez, who he had blind faith in)

      “a cannonading drive”

  11. secretdragonfly says:

    Jacques Martin lands in Pittsburgh
    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=429454

  12. HabinBurlington says:

    As a Blue Bomber fan, happy the team has finally agreed to part ways with Joe Mack. His tenure as GM has been terrible in my estimation.

    http://www.tsn.ca/cfl/story/?id=429451

    • bwoar says:

      Glad Buchko is out too. Next: lose the entire BoG.

      Good ol’ Wade Miller. Gotta hand it to the guy, he runs a successful business. Hoping he can turn the franchise around (finally.)

      “thoroughbred”

  13. Sportfan says:

    Blue Jays Western Road Trip wrap up
    http://lastwordonsports.com/2013/08/08/blue-jays-return-from-west-after-a-mediocre-week/

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  14. Chris says:

    Since HF72 is in his happy place today, I’ll provide a Friday rant.

    To all those people that fix those evil trailer mirrors onto their trucks (the ones that stick out extra far from the vehicle, sometimes more than a foot), please don’t forget that you have those infernal creations attached to your vehicle while passing cyclists.

    I’ve had a couple of those things whistle by my ear as an overly eager driver passes by me while leaving barely enough room for that mirror to pass by my head while they go zooming by. I’m particularly sensitive to mirrors, having lost a brother to a mirror hitting him in the head while cycling many decades ago, but I am simply amazed at how many drivers underestimate the gap between the mirror and the cyclist.

    Canada is already one of the least cyclist friendly countries in the world (with notable exception to the city of Ottawa, and Victoria has certainly worked at it too), so the extra danger posed by weekend warriors and their mirrors is something cyclists don’t really need.

  15. commandant says:

    5 Questions for the Canucks in 2013-14

    http://lastwordonsports.com/2013/08/09/five-burning-questions-for-the-canucks-heading-into-2013-14/

    Go Habs Go!
    Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.
    http://lastwordonsports.com/

  16. HabinBurlington says:

    How to fix the NHL, by Sean McIndoe (Down goes Brown infamy, now writing for Grantland as well).

    http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/9538380/how-fix-nhl/

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      He’s right about everything.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      very well written. Thanks for posting Gerald. I hate the loser point as well with the shootouts and do agree strongly that needs to change or change the value as it really does skew the standings for a gimic

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • on2ndthought says:

      great read. love the draft idea. I think the NHL should bo back to some sort of geographic system, where once every 3 (or 5 or 10) years a team can forego it’s usual 1st rounder to pick a ‘franchise’ type player from their geographic area. team in non-traditional markets could get a chunk of NA not having an NHL team. These areas would have to be carved up, but not neccessarily ‘fairly’. Why shouldn’t it be an advantage to be in a hockey-mad market. Also each team would have the same right for an area of Europe (or the entire world). You’d still have to sign the player, and the European leagues would obviously compete for their services, but I think it would be cool to have a section of Saskatchewan and one of Finland cheering for St.Lois because their best players (usually) end up there.

      Home whites suck: it should be up to the home team. Where there is no confusion, just let ‘em play in thei ‘darks’. In other words against Toronto, Boston, Pit we could wear the BBRouge, against Det, Ott, Was we wear whites, unless they want to.

      “a cannonading drive”

      • Chris says:

        There should be no advantage to being in a hockey-mad market. Teams should win the Stanley Cup based on their ability to make good decisions. I say abolish the draft altogether and make these guys all free agents.

        You don’t need a draft AND a hard salary cap (so long as that cap is enforced and rich teams can’t foist their players into Europe through “transfer agreements”. Then you don’t have to worry about tanking teams getting elite players. Everybody has a shot at them, but it puts more onus on teams to properly manage their salary caps.

  17. Strummer says:

    A-a-a-a-a-r-r-r-r-r-g-o-o-o-o-s!!!!!!

    ______________________________________________________
    “It’s just an opinion – I could be wrong”

    • 24 Cups says:

      Well said, Strummer. My beloved Argos kicked the living crap out of the sad sack Alouettes. In fact Toronto did this without using their top player for most of the second half.

      The Alouettes are a disgrace to the league. The franchise should be moved to Quebec City or Markham. Maybe even Seattle or Kansas City.

      When I was much younger, Dick Shatto was my favourite player. He even had a fish & chip store down the road from my house on Eglinton Ave. We used to go the the CNE grandstand to watch the games which would draw 40,000+. Double Blue, indeed.

      • Chris says:

        Bit harsh saying the Alouettes should be moved. They lost the 2008 Grey Cup, and then won it in 2009 and 2010. The Anthony Calvillo era is clearly over, but you can’t just throw a guy with his credentials on the scrap heap. The Alouettes are rebuilding and will be back in contention soon enough.

        The Argos are now riding high after missing the playoffs in 2008, 2009, and 2011 before winning the Grey Cup in 2012. I wouldn’t be too cocky there. :)

  18. wjc says:

    Does anyone ever wonder how they find buyers for these teams when they are losing so much money.

    That is the part where you realize that other revenue streams come into play. They now have financial predictablilty with teams unable to spend above the salary cap.

    When you join the NHL, NBA, NFL, etc. you are joining a special group that are guaranteed to make money. The NHL for example bring in huge amounts of money, licensing, pay per view, playoffs, Television rights, advertising, that gets divided among the teams.

    What do you think they do with all this revenue, put it in the mattress.

    The average fan, doesn’t get it an probably never will.

    wjc

    • HabinBurlington says:

      So when Vanderbeek (Devils Owner) refinanced his debt, and then missed his payments upon restructuring, he was actually stuffing cash in his mattress? You should consider contacting his lending institution with these facts and let them know. They may want to grab that cash and maybe while they are there, they can contact the Mattress police and ensure no tags have been ripped off.

      :)

      • commandant says:

        The Devils losing money is 100% due to the interest on those loans. Vanderbeek overextended himself with too much debt to build the Prudential Centre.

        Go Habs Go!
        Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.
        http://lastwordonsports.com/

        • HabinBurlington says:

          I don’t disagree, the guy has proven to be not such smart businessman, but the fact remains that his Devils team is indeed in a bad financial state. That is the crux of why I think Kovalchuk was allowed to walk with no arms up in the air.

          Imagine if Crosby did that to Pittsburgh or Malkin? The team, the league would fight it tooth and nail.

          • junyab says:

            I guess we can assume Balsillie lost all his money in RIM since his name hasn’t been mentioned AT ALL.

  19. Maritime Ron says:

    Would like to ask the HIO folks their opinion on our D set up and please correct me if I’m wrong.

    On the right side, we only have Subban and Diaz.
    Emelin shoots left, but was playing on the right side with Markov and who knows when he’s coming back….

    On the left side we have Bouillon, Drewiske, Gorges, Tinordi, and Markov.
    Can any of these guys play well and consistent on the right side?

    As for our prospects, Beaulieu is also a left hand shot, although Greg Pateryn and Magnus Nygren are both right hand shots.

    Nygren isn’t a kid as he just turned 23 and has played against men and for Farjestads for the past 3 years. He also won the Salming Trophy as best D man in the League.

    So how does this all play out barring some long term injury?

    • Phil C says:

      A shortage of right shooting defensemen is just a fact of life in the NHL. When a d-man plays on his off-side, I don’t like the way they have to turn their back to pick the puck off the boards. Leaves them vulnerable. Cole broke his neck like this. Lucic creamed Spacek like this as well. Arguably Emelin would have not made the play he was injured on if he was playing on the left, where I think he is much more effective.

      I really wish they had kept Wisniewski for this reason. Puck moving right handed defensmen with a big shot and toughness are a rare commodity.

      But back to reality of the Habs. I thought Gorges was the best at playing on the right. He was great with Gill in the 2010 playoffs. Of course, he was never used that way last year. Maybe this gives Pateryn an edge to make the team.

    • Walmyr says:

      Ron, your question regarding our D set up is a tough one to answer.
      I think Montreal will start with Markov-Subban and Gorges-Diaz (and I hate that pairing). The third one I have no clue.
      If we flip Markov for Gorges we could end with Markov-Diaz combo (i don’t like either)…
      Our D is a big puzzle for now…could be a little better when (who knows) Emelin returns…

      cheers

    • Chris says:

      Gorges broke out as an NHL player playing on the right side with Hal Gill as his partner. Gorges has also partnered Markov in the past. He’s done reasonably well on the right side. The problem there is that the Habs seem pretty intent on using Gorges with Subban.

      I would say you’re going to see Markov and Diaz, and Gorges with Subban eating the lion’s share of the ice time. Bouillon and Tinordi will, in all likelihood, form the third pairing with Drewiske as the veteran 7th defenceman.

      Nygren will spend a year in the AHL adjusting to NHL sized ice, while Pateryn should get a long look this year. I suspect there won’t be a lot of movement on the blue line because the team has so many veterans that they aren’t likely to sit regularly.

    • Habfan17 says:

      Hi M. R.

      I would think Nygren may push for a spot, although I see him playing in Hamilton to start. Ife he does really well, he may make Diaz expendable around the trade deadline. I read that he has a very heavy shot to go with his offensive talents.

      I would say Pateryn should get a look for the 3rd pairing. I think he will surprise a lot of people. He helped Bennett a lot in college.

      I did read that Adam Oates did a study and determined that when players play on their “off” side, they make around 30% more turnovers.

      Habfan17

  20. frontenac1 says:

    @secretdragonfly. The barmaid tried to find it the the other day at the Saloon,but all she could find was poker and tennis.If anybody can find what network its on, please post it.Saludos!

  21. frontenac1 says:

    Bettman. Smarmy little gunsel.

  22. secretdragonfly says:

    So the U-18 semi-final against Russia is today – anyone know if it’s being televised?

    • von says:

      According to Hockey Canada, it’s being broadcast by USA Hockey through http://usahockey.fasthockey.com.

      I checked it out and it’s PPV. $7.99 a game or you can buy credits which makes it cheaper. Pretty weak.

      I’d watch but not for $$. Unfortunately, because this is a lower profile tournament, doesn’t look like it’s available via any free streaming sites. Oh well.

      _________________________________

      “Obviously it would be great, but they don’t really hang conference titles in this rink. They raise Stanley Cup banners.” – Carey Price

  23. HabFanSince72 says:

    Friday rant time. Except today I’ve got nothing. (Don’t get me wrong – I’ve got the Bruins, Gary Bettman, Colin Campbell etc … but they’re rant worthy any day of the week.)

    So I’m calling for a Friday Kudos instead.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      HFS72′s Friday Kudos.

      I renewed my passport this week. It took me this much time: fill online form (3 min), Go to Jean-Coutu to have passport photos taken (15 min including shop for toothpaste and razor blades while I waited), Time spent at Passport Office (3 min). Yes – 3 minutes at the passport office and I was on my way.

      Say what you want about bureaucrats, but that’s efficient. Kudos to you, Bureaucracy of the Canadian Govt.

      • habsfan0 says:

        I suspect your wait would have been somewhat longer if this was not a renewal.

        • chanchilla says:

          this and only this.

        • punkster says:

          Not really.

          I’ve had quite a few dealings with fed and Quebec prov gov departments over the past 6 years…new passports (long ago expired for me), various passports, SIN cards, health cards, birth certificates, driver’s licenses for teenagers (unreal how many times they can lose or let expire important documents), numerous death certificate related requirements, and on and on. I can’t recall a single time I had to wait more than 10 minutes in a line or take more than a few minutes at a counter with a gov employee to complete a transaction.

          So I agree with 72…between Service Canada, Passport Canada and all the Quebec provincial agencies my experiences have been excellent.

          Kudos.

          ***SUBBANGIN’ NOW BABY!!!***

    • wjc says:

      Why is ranting so important anyways. Is it necessary?

      How about ‘lets see how things look at training camp, and enjoy the season.’

      Boring and positive is hardly ever very interesting, but, sometimes ranting gets boring as well.

      wjc

  24. joebatts says:

    WHO GIVES A CRAP about Lafleur’s comeback!!!! WOW really nothing to write about these day eh?? Stop with the past!!!!

    • ZepFan2 says:

      Nobody forced you to open this story and read it. You don’t like the story, don’t read it.

      ———————————————————————-
      Ka is a wheel.

      “On we sweep, with threshing oar.
      Our only goal will be the Stanley Cup!” – Danno

      For Your Life

    • wjc says:

      Okay, talk about the future. Oh wait, that is just guessing. Talk about the present. Oh wait, nothing is happening.

      How about ‘go take a nap’. Mostly every story is about the past. Because it has already happened and you can learn stuff from it.

      wjc

  25. HabinBurlington says:

    And in other news….. Bettman can’t understand why people in Phoenix/Glendale are leery of the 5 year out clause which is in place. How this guy can say the things he does with a straight face is a tribute to his character, or lack thereof.

    http://www.azcentral.com/sports/coyotes/articles/20130808escape-clause-limits-warmth-valleys-phoenix-coyotes-embrace.html?nclick_check=1

  26. habsfan0 says:

    Today’s date in history:
    Aug. 9, 1988..25 years ago today..Wayne Gretzky traded to LA.
    Aug. 9, 1969..44 years ago today..Sharon Tate among others butchered by Manson family. It’s a crime that that sicko is still among the living.

    • Strummer says:

      Both of these events pale in comparison to this date in 1945 in Nagasaki

      ______________________________________________________
      “It’s just an opinion – I could be wrong”

  27. HabinBurlington says:

    Devils Financial Woes:
    Given all the reports we are presently hearing, this only confirms (or close to it) for me that my cynical thoughts on Kovalchuk leaving for the KHL were indeed probably spurred on by the Devils themselves with a small wink wink/nudge nudge from the league saying, Go For It!

    With that contract on the books, the sale of the team was difficult. Perhaps this also explains why within days of Kovalchuk leaving, his sister was already quoted talking about his return in a number of years.

    Sorry to be so cynical, but this league has proven they will do anything to protect their present locations etc….(In the states that is)

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Absolutely no reason to apologize for being cynical Gerald. Mister’s Bettman, Daly and Daddy have been less than authentic on many occasions and are more to blame for your cynicism than yourself.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      And these jerks that are running this NHL today are talking about expansion! They have no clue how this game should be played.

      Such a watered down version of what the real game of hockey use to be played like. There is no way of playing the quality finesse and speed game any longer.
      Each year we get closer and closer to football on skates as this game is further diluted of true hockey talent.

      Each team has about 10 true NHL caliber players. The rest of the roster is fill out with has bin’s and AHL players today.
      They will be putting teams in the Caribbean for vacationer’s entertainment soon.

    • wjc says:

      Burlington: First of all there had to be an offer from Russia.

      New Jersey signed him long term for big money knowing what the market was, in other words, they knew what they were doing.

      My belief is no team is financially strapped.

      The yearly running of the team may produce a paper loss, the end of the year dividing of the money by the NHL is recorded separately and makes everyone financially solvent.

      Teams are signing guys long term for big money for a reason, to lock them up and prevent competition. The KHL is growing and made the offer and New Jersey allowed him to go. If that is what he wants…..good luck.

      The owners are not fools and especially Bettman.

      They are all winning big time, with a growing brand.

      wjc

      • HabinBurlington says:

        I am well aware of the fact KHL had to have an offer. Having said that, with Sochi around the corner and its importance to the KHL, the planets aligned. My point is rather simple, the Devils hated the contract they gave Kovalchuk, when the opportunity presented itself for him to go to Russia, the team and the league were very quick to rubberstamp this termination of a contract.

        I think it had a great deal to do with the Devils being in a financial despair. Not neccesarily the yearly cash flow of the team, but the debt which that team is saddled with (new arena etc…) is making it cumbersome.

  28. habstrinifan says:

    As we mark the anniversary of the Gretzky trade, remember that things arent always as they appear to be. You really think the ‘real’ Gretzky was traded to LA?

    Just ask yourself.. why no husband in Brantford has ever asked “Is this the G Spot?”.

    Things are not always what they seem my friend.

    For instance… Who killed Jack?

    Jack Barnaby famous computer hacker found dead in his apartment July 25/2013. Jack wa sonly 35. Police immediately declared no signs of foul play, called it a ‘natural death’ and handed the body over to the coroner.

    Among the things Jack hacked:(demonstrated at Black Hatter hacker
    Conventions)

    ATM’s to shell out cash.
    Insulin pums from 300ft to deliver fatal dosages of insulin to
    wearer.
    Jack was set to show how he could hack into (and control) pacemakers and implanted defibrillators from 30ft away..at the next hackers convention.

    Some say he isnt dead but smuggled into a secret place by CIA and forced to work for them.
    Some say Russia kidnapped him (on information from Snowden) and placed a look alike in his room.

    Some say Jack’s death coincides with a proliferation of ‘Eds’ in HIO.

    Me… I no say nuttin… except you watch Josh Gorges play like Scott Niedermayer in 2013-2014.. and know strang things happen my friend…. like Ryan White getting over 3500 hits. Notice how fast the new threads come NOW?

    Booo!

    • JohnBellyful says:

      Trini, I’m thinkin’ your coffee wasn’t decaffeinated. :)

      • Habfan10912 says:

        JB, We’ve been hanging out too long. I was thinking the same thing. :)

      • HabinBurlington says:

        I don’t know, normally I would find that post a little to spooky, but given last night I found a bat in my house flying around (until it met my curling corn broom) anything is now possible.

        • Strummer says:

          I too have conquered a bat in my home with a broom.

          ______________________________________________________
          “It’s just an opinion – I could be wrong”

        • 24 Cups says:

          Gerald – do not discard the dead bat. Phone the health authorities and they will come and pick it up for testing. I’m being serious here.

          Bats can bite you at night without you ever knowing.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Crap too late, it was picked up in the garbage this morning. Appreciate the warning.

            Hmmmm, have these funny 2 marks on my neck and I seem to enjoy being up all night. Okay, just kidding, I do heed your warning, but in the bedlum of catching the bugger, my instincts were to kill and remove the JM look alike!

        • Luke says:

          I think I would have just moved.

          Yah… let’s combine Rats with Moths.

          Good job, Nature. idiot.

          That beast probably laid eggs in you while you were sleeping and now it’s larva is slowly eating you from the inside.

    • Cal says:

      Was Jack the Hack a victim of an Attack?
      Was he shoved into a Sack?
      Will he ever be Back?
      Tabern…

    • wjc says:

      How do we know that, no husband in Brantford ask that question.

      People die young all the time, by many means.

      But you are allowed your theories, but proof may be hard to find.

      Remember the proof, is in the proof, that is the proof, so you have to prove it.

      wjc

      • bwoar says:

        “A proof is a proof. What kind of a proof? It’s a proof. A proof is a proof. And when you have a good proof, it’s because it’s proven.”

        “thoroughbred”

  29. Maritime Ron says:

    It appears as though 16 year old phenom Connor McDavid has a great shot at making Team Canada for the world juniors.

    If so, he would join Sidney Crosby, Eric Lindros, Jason Spezza, Jay Bouwmeester and Wayne Gretzky as Canadian 16-year-olds to play at a world junior.

    Potential to finish last (meaning best chance out of the 14 teams in the Lottery) and win McDavid?
    Who knows, but imagine if it’s New Jersey….but they won’t be able to pick because they will not have a 1st round pick next year as the result of a penalty sanction due to cap circumvention when signing Ilya Kovalchuk.

  30. frontenac1 says:

    Hello Tokyo? New phone amigos.

  31. Habfan10912 says:

    Bettman and Daly say the league has NO plans to take over the NJ Devils. The Bergen County Record says otherwise. Who do you believe?

    • doc359 says:

      Multiple sources have said there are people bidding for the Devils (including the big pockets of the 76r ownership), so I doubt the league would take over.

      • Habfan10912 says:

        Hi Doc. Yes I read that the 76′ers group was interested. I’ve also read reports that the Devil’s dept is somewhere around $230 Million. Holy cow!

  32. Habfan10912 says:

    Good morning all! In reference to Bennett, I hate to pee in everyone’s Corn Flakes but I see nothing in his game to expect him to “dominate” in the NCAA or at any other level as his associate coach notes in the article.

    Look, I’ve been guilty of hyping prospects just because they happen to be Canadien property. I thought AK was going to be a 40 goal scorer and an all-star for the team. I’m not going to fall for this hype.

    At 6′ 185ish with some good offensive skills, he reminds me of a Weber type player. My hope for him is he develops into a depth type defense who can be inserted into the lineup to help the power play. To expect anything more would lead to disappointment.

    Maybe I’ll be surprised and he’ll grow (he’s already 22) into a much better pro than what I think. If so I’ll sit back and eat crow and enjoy Timo calling him another smurf.

    CHeers all.

  33. Ian Cobb says:

    Summit News! Good Morning!

    Two things!.
    1st– many people are wanting more Summit game tickets, sorry, but I had to have payment into the Bell Center last week. I get preferential treatment for our HIO group, but then game tickets go to the general public for sale. I can get all the tickets that we need, but there is a cut off point for me.

    2nd–Hotel rooms at discount price. Book your rooms as soon as you can. 1 to 4 nights are available to HIO members. Walking distance to all events. There are only 32 HIO rooms left I believe.

    SUMMIT HOTEL RATE AGREEMENT
    Hockey Inside Out
    REQUIREMENT
    Arrival : Friday 25th, 26th October, 2013 – check-in 15:00
    Departure : check-out 12:00
    Housing Procedure: Individual calling
    Deadline: September 25th 2013
    Method of Payment : Individual
    Although the hotel is not blocking any rooms, it guarantees the below rates until September 25th 2013.
    After that date, the rates are no longer guaranteed
    Tarification
    Single Double Triple Quad
    $119 $119 $144 $169

    RATES
    - Are for single or double occupancy, Add $25 per additional person, max. 4 per room
    - Include Basic Internet Access (256kb)
    - Does not include high speed internet. a daily fee of $9.95 applies
    - All tax’s apply per room per night
    - Will be extended 3 days prior to and/or following your event, subject to availability
    - Are quoted in Canadian funds
    METHOD OF RESERVATION
    - Individual attendees will be responsible for payment of their room, tax and incidental, as well as any cancellation charges if they apply.
    - One night deposit is required upon reservation. This is non refundable if cancelled.

    - Individual reservations can be made by contacting the Novotel Montreal Centre Reservations Department directly by phone at 514-871-2138 or 1-866-861-6112 (USA and Canada) or by fax at 514-861-6470
    Callers must mention the group name HIO, Hockey Inside Out to ensure they receive the appropriate rate and are included in the guest room block.
    Novotel Montreal Center
    Chantal Morin

    Summit game tickets, News, Pictures and comments
    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Montreal-Canadiens-We-Are-Fans-Summit/197390760316125

  34. HabinBurlington says:

    Morning everyone, hey did anyone wake up JB yet? Coffee’s almost gone and haven’t heard anything from him.

    Eddie, if you decide to get an avatar picture, I hope you pick something along the lines of a picture of Sam Pollock, your astute posts are worthy of a handle like that.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Morning Bud! I have an extra cup or two brewing here if you run out. I feel so much better this morning since the mystery of Ed/Eddie has been solved. Like I said to Eddie below, I thought I recognized the intelligent post.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Morning Jim, thanks for the cup of Joe appreciate it. Didn’t end up hitting the links yesterday, got busy at work. Going to try again today.

        Have a good one.

    • JohnBellyful says:

      Mornin’, Burl’.
      Got my cup of Java in the PC a while ago.
      The donut was a bonus.

    • Cal says:

      I’ve never liked proselytizing atheists or religious groups. Every person believes or not. Arguing about it changes nothing except the aggravation level of some.

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      To be fair, you can’t judge based on one little tweet. He often tweets a group of messages, and it’s hard to say what the context was in this case. I imagine that he didn’t just drop this out of the blue with no apparent reason. People tend to be guilty of reading too much into little tweets.

      After some checking, here’s how he explained: “Why mention Muslim Nobels rather than any other group? Because we so often hear boasts about (a) their total numbers and (b) their science.”

    • Bill says:

      I didn’t have a problem with what he said. He is criticizing Islamic countries for being technologically and scientifically backwards. This is true for the most part. It’s hard to defend “honour killings” and female mutilation. The PC crowd is all over Dawkins for stating – in an admittedly blunt and indelicate way – the obvious.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        “It’s hard to defend “honour killings” and female mutilation.”

        Sure is.

        It’s also hard to defend someone who equates those things with being muslim. Female mutilation is not inherently muslim. Neither are honour killings.

      • Chris says:

        Slippery ground.

        “Islamic countries” are often countries in the developing world. As such, you would expect them to be significantly behind the industrialized nations in terms of technology and science.

        What about “Christian countries” such as Brazil (no Brazilian has ever won a Nobel Prize), Mexico (one Nobel Prize for science in addition to one each for peace and literature), Portugal (one for science, two for peace, one for literature), or Spain (two for science, 6 for literature)?

        Dawkins, as he frequently does, knows better. The Nobel Prize is a highly political award in the sciences requires extensive connections among the power players in the powerful scientific communities of Western Europe, Japan and the United States. It is very difficult for people outside those two regions to win the Nobel Prize, no matter how deserving their research might be.

        A great example is China: they have produced only four Nobel Prize winners in the sciences (all in physics). Of those scientists, Charles Kao’s work was done at Stanford, Charles Tsui worked at Princeton, Cheng Ning Yang worked at Princeton and Tsung-Dao Lee worked at Columbia. A Chinese scientist can win a Nobel Prize so long as they work at an American Ivy League school.

    • bwoar says:

      He’s always been a horse’s rear.

      He is one of the reasons I don’t want to be called an atheist, which is a perfectly good English word. He’s got the typical smart guy disease, which makes one think that every banal idea (that obviously must be tweeted or spoken or written) is as penetrating as the actual intelligent thoughts in one’s mind.

      I hereby dub that behaviour Dawkins Disorder, and condemn it to heck. Straight to heck with it.

      “thoroughbred”

  35. huge_polar_bear says:

    Yaaawn, good morning… what’s for breakfast?

  36. Eddie says:

    I used to be ed, then I made a capital change and became Ed.

    Just as I was getting used to this new name, along came the original Ed, so I had to consider another name change.

    I decided on Eddie.

    Sorry for the confusion.

    And now a few words about Mac Bennett (thanks to Ron, below) – totally high on this young man’s chances for several reasons.

    1) excellent skater – smooth, powerful, confident

    2) great decisions – calm, consistent, rarely makes a mistake

    3) balance in his game – looks just as good on the PP as he does on the PK – same player, same demeanor, same great skating stride

    4) intangibles – great family, father starred at Brown, and grandfather and 2 uncles played in the NHL. And Mac went to The Hotchkiss School so he’s smart, respectful, and a great teammate.

    No surprise he will be captain this year. He will fight his way through Hamilton and then eventually climb to the NHL. Hope we have a spot available at that time.

  37. Cal says:

    Hey there, early birds!
    I was one happy tennis player last night and on to this morning. First, Pospisil does the impospisil by beating world #6 Berdych. Then, Raonic caps off the evening with a win over Del Potro. These wins propel both Canadians into the quarter finals. A definite Red (and white) letter day for Canadian men’s tennis. :)

    • JF says:

      Pretty exciting. Pospisil’s achievement is actually more impressive than Raonic’s, since he’s ranked so much lower. I was expecting Raonic to get to where he is much sooner, but he still has major problems with consistency and unforced errors.

  38. Maritime Ron says:

    Great article about Mac Bennet (Habs draft pick in 2009-3rd round-79th overall) and him being named Captain of University of Michigan this year.

    From his Associate Coach Billy Powers:
    ” “Mac Bennett will be a dominant college defenseman [this season]. We expect him to be the most dominant offensive and defensive defenseman in the Big Ten. There are no ifs, ands or buts about it,” added Powers. “Every night, there will be someone in the building who will say – ‘That No. 37 is special’.”
    He is slated to play in excess of 25 minutes per game on Michigan’s back end.

    And some good stuff of how the organization is committed to watching over the guys the Habs have picked:
    ” Making several trips to southeast Michigan this past season to get a firsthand look at the top defensive prospect, Canadiens player development coach Patrice Brisebois believes Bennett’s evolution is a by-product of his mental make-up.

    “He’s very mature for his age. He always asks questions, and he’s always looking to improve,” noted the 18-year NHL veteran, who was pleased to see his pupil keep his promise to reach the 195-pound mark to start the Canadiens’ development camp in early July. “That means he’s got that work ethic. He knows, ‘If I’m going to make it, I need to get better and stronger.’ That means that he cares.

    http://canadiens.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=678965

    • Cal says:

      We have to be liking the prospects and the depth the Habs MAY have going forward. This waiting for a good to great team is killing me!

      • Maritime Ron says:

        Cal
        You’ll notice that the Cup winners and realistic contenders have drafted well both early when they were lucky and also in the later rounds.

        Then, once they built up their prospect pool, that allowed them to trade for key missing elements.
        The Habs will probably need another 2-3-4 years to get there.

        Also, once the team becomes a legitimate contender, then UFAs will look at the Habs differently because while they love the money, several want to be a part of a potential Cup run

  39. Maritime Ron says:

    Good Morning morning crew.

    With the new Division/Conference line-ups, and all teams playing a home and home against each other this year, a very brave soul had the courage to calculate each team’s ‘Total Travel Mileage’ for the 2013-14 season along with the total number of ‘Back-to-Back’ games each team will play.

    http://www.ontheforecheck.com/2013/7/19/4539874/2013-2014-nhl-schedule-super-travel-miles-back-to-back-games.

    Put in perspective, a 1 way flight from Montreal to Vancouver is about 2300 miles and about 5 1/2 hours in the air.

    Some of the highlights:

    Atlantic Division:
    Canadiens: 39,327 miles with 17 back-to-back games
    Maple Leafs: 35,975 miles with 16 Back to back
    Senators: 34,850 – 16
    Sabres: 34,812 – 13
    Red Wings: 35,324 – 15
    Bruins: 42,389 – 17
    Panthers: 45,136 – 14
    Lightning; 43,102 – 12

    Most travel miles: San Jose Sharks – 57,612.
    Least travel miles: New York Rangers – 29,839

    Most back-to back games: 22 – NJ Devils
    Least back to back games: 10 – Colorado-Winnipeg-San Jose

    Big Winners compared to last full 82 game schedule:
    Florida: 7651 less miles to travel
    NY Rangers:7546 less miles to travel
    Detroit: 7541 less miles to travel
    Columbus: 6234 less miles to travel.

    Biggest Losers:
    San Jose: 13,681 more miles to travel
    Boston: 8169 more miles to travel + 4 more back to back games

    Most Privileged Team:
    New York Rangers: Least amount of travel miles at 29,839 and only 13 back-to-back games.

    • Cal says:

      It’s not a surprise if the travel miles go up when we consider that the Habs are playing every team again (and about time). Under the old system, the Habs may not play more than once against the Cup champs. Now, they have 2 dates against them and that’s a very good thing.

      It’s going to be another intense season. Now that August is here, the jonesing begins.

      • Maritime Ron says:

        Hi Cal
        It’s going to be fun seeing some teams at the Bell Centre we haven’t seen in awhile:

        LA Dec 10th
        Chicago Jan 10th
        Patrick and Colorado March 18th

        One of the quirks of the schedule is that we play Detroit 4 times, yet the 1st game against them is late on Jan 24th – and we don’t see Boston until December 5th.

        Another weird one is of the 13 games we play in October, 9 are against the Western Conference

  40. ZURF says:

    Anyone know how I can put a pic with my name? I forget how its done.

    “If ya ain’t wasted, the day is!”

    • savethepuck says:

      Go to gravator.com and register with the same e-mail you use here. When you post your pic Make sure it is rated G. That’s all I can remember because I did it over 3 yrs ago.

      “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
      Carey Price

  41. HABWARRIOR says:

    Well, anyone else going through what i’m going through??NHL withdrawal???

    I can’t take this anymore!

    Summer sucks.Why?Without hockey I go freakin’ MAD!!Crazy mad!

    I need my hockey fix!My habs fix!

    “If ya ain’t wasted, the day is!”

  42. Marc10 says:

    Not bad the old Guy…

    That’s Chelios and Roy on the ice for that first goal…

  43. Da Hema says:

    I don’t know whether it has been mentioned already, but my goodness the Montreal Alouettes really, really suck. I mean, they are like the Edmonton Eskimos of the East — except in possession of even greater amounts of suckitude. Just thought I’d throw this out there….

  44. JohnBellyful says:

    If it’s not too much trouble, could the first one in tomorrow from the morning crew put the coffee on and send out an alert when it’s ready. (I’ve got the PC in the bedroom on ‘Siren’.)
    Thanks a heap.

  45. savethepuck says:

    “The biggest trade in hockey history”

    To me the Roy trade was the biggest trade in hockey history because he was by far my favorite player. Before anybody says the the Gretzky trade was the biggest without a doubt, I know that of course, but on a personal level the Roy trade floored me and the Gretzky trade made me say Wow at first but it didn’t affect me at all.
    “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
    Carey Price

    • JohnBellyful says:

      “The biggest trade in hockey history”?
      Easy. Happened in 2001. New York Islanders sent the league’s biggest player, six-foot-nine defenceman Zdeno Chara, to Ottawa for six-foot-three Aleksei Yashin, who then signs the biggest contract in NHL history, $87.5 million over 10 years, with the Islanders.

  46. chanchilla says:

    for all those who have been waiting as patiently as i have, the canadiens website finally has 24ch full episodes posted! they’re in segments, but there nonetheless.

  47. Arnou Ruelle says:

    http://video.tsn.ca/?dl=main/latest/6/0/979373/clip/636

    Whether I nor anyone else will disagree with this video clip, I think it does gave a valid point why the NHL had become a bloated, money-making, cash cow that we know today.

    Gretzky’s trade 25 years ago only intensified how athletes at the pro-level (in any sport) should be paid for their playing services.

    This has now become the burden for GM’s like Bergevin, the ones before him, and all 29 other NHL clubs. For 25 years, before and since Bettman became commissioner, this league has gone to expanding with places (Anaheim, Phoenix, Dallas, San Jose, Tampa Bay, Atlanta (Now Winnipeg)) unthinkable to have a hockey club, to high salary caps, to inflated contracts of about $3-4Million+/season, to 3 lockouts and 1 season cancelled.

    To me, the 2 greatest and most controversial trades that happened in the league are the ones that involve 2 Canadians from 2 big Canadian Hockey clubs going to American franchises. Gretzky, being the first, is the one that I believe was compelled to pure money. Peter Pocklington is the biggest reason this blunder happened. Next to it is Wayne Gretzky’s wife – Janet Jones. I don’t believe that she wasn’t involve in Wayne’s decision to go to L.A.. Just by watching the presscon shows #99 does not want to leave Edmonton.

    The other trade that I still feel resentment is a different story. This is fuelled by hate from a hockey coach that became heated and till this day, both former players have a grudge for each other. Patrick Roy should never have gone from Montreal to Colorado if that hack named Mario Tremblay didn’t created that fiasco on December 2, 1995. I would’ve wanted to see this goalie end his career in Montreal. But life writes a different story compared to what you want to happen.

  48. Phil C says:

    I always wore number 10 when I played. Unless it was taken, which was often.

  49. Ian Cobb says:

    This year’s CFL Als team is a wrap, and done like dinner.
    Disaster season!

  50. HabFanSince72 says:

    Oh my. Alouettes!

  51. Habfan10912 says:

    All right I’m confused (I know, that’s easy to do). Is Eddie really Ed? Or is Eddie a new Ed. Now Ed use to include his last name but dropped it several months ago, I assume for a good reason. So now it’s hard to see the diferences between the Ed’s and the Eddie’s. Ed or Eddie can you help me? :)

  52. HammerHab says:

    Does anyboday actually like Bitchin’ Kitchen on the Food Network? I want to like it based on the concept but the host is terrible….just terrible.

    ———————————–

    It’ll always be Habs Inside/Out to me

  53. Eddie says:

    Saw Patrick Roy play what I believe was his very first exhibition game in a Habs uniform at the Forum….against the Oilers and Gretzky.

    I think Gretzky had 4 or 5 points that night and we took it on the chin 7-4, (approx).

    I remember sitting there and wondering what all the fuss was about around this young goalie – he just didn’t impress me against the Oilers! ha! ha!

  54. commandant says:

    A look at the Coyotes’ future prospects.

    http://lastwordonsports.com/2013/08/08/top-shelf-prospects-phoenix-coyotes-2/

    Go Habs Go!
    Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.
    http://lastwordonsports.com/

    • chanchilla says:

      not to mention ekman larsson is what, 22? He’s one of those players i’d give up quite a bit to see playing beside PK could you imagine that 1-2 punch!!!

  55. HabFab says:

    A heads up to all those looking for the CH24 series. HabsTV is now running the complete series. Today is series 3.

  56. Habs4LifeInTO says:

    Fucale did very well today. That’s nice to see.

    Thank you for posting that Hab Fab. Hockey Canada site only has 31 shots against Zach for some reason…

    24 cups and counting….

  57. nickster13 says:

    Sometimes, our looking back too much and being too hardcore has worked to our detriment. People in Canada are as rabid as ever about hockey, and won’t accept rebuilds, creating band-aid fixes across the Canadian markets. That’s why we don’t win cups these days!
    Also, distractions from the centennial year and the pressure on players to win in the Canadian markets with media pressure is intense.
    Its difficult to get over the hump from these challenges in a Canadian market

    “I don’t wanna see Maurice tonight, I want the rocket!”

  58. HabFab says:

    Canada beats Sweden 7-3. De La Rose had a goal and Hudon had no stats. Fucale went the distance and had 38 saves.

  59. Omit says:

    If any of you had seen Bobby Orr play, you’d know who the best player was.

    “Time wounds all heels”. – J.L.

  60. Mavid says:

    ahhh Dick Irving..what a voice..they don’t make them like that anymore..

    • HabFab says:

      What a sweet face!

      • Mavid says:

        my princess :-)

        • HabFab says:

          Yeah!! Be careful with that. My little princess, who goes to kindergarten in the fall was trying to manipulate her grandfather into doing something that couldn’t be done at the time. I explained why it could not happen at that time to which her response was “Don’t you call me your princess?” Yes “Well then you have to do what I want” Yeah, well sorry sweetheart but we can’t.

          (Note to self – go easy on the princess in the future)

  61. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …sitting here with the Kidz in the lobby of the Chateau Lake Louise after Their very first trail ride (horse back)

    …not that far from Edmonton, of course

    …I could not give a frig about Gretzky then, nor do I now

    …but Lafleur’s career, including his return, will live with Me forever

    …by the way, during Our stay here We have seen a LOT of Beantown Bruiser types …if Y’all know what I mean :(

    …they seem to REALLY enjoy jelly donuts :)

  62. Hobie Hansen says:

    Pretty crazy night at the old Forum for Lafleur and the fans in the above video. I remember it clearly. I had just moved back to Montreal as a young kid with my parents and was elated to get 90% of the Canadiens games on TV again, instead of the Leafs!

    That’s pretty much the season I became a diehard Habs fan. So unfortunately I was too young to remember Lafleur in his prime. The first year I played organized hockey as a six year old I wore his number all the way until I was yanked from my brief hockey career at age 12 . :-).

    I had to settle for outdoor hockey everyday after school for the next six or seven years, which was amazing. Lot of fight’s with the French kids, who by the way, love talking trash and having fun when I see them 20 years later! Now I’m just rambling…GUY GUY GUY!!!!!

  63. Mavid says:

    who is Gretzky? I have heard of the flower dude..

  64. sweetmad says:

    Not interested in the Gretzy trade,history does nothing for me.More interested in how our team will look next next year, how the Dogs will look and how our prospects are looking.

    I have lived through too much history,it happened so what,did we learn anything from it, I doubt it.I really am far more interested in what will happen than what did.
    GO HABS GO

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      More interested in the upcoming Moen and DD trades…

      “You’re always, always, always looking to make your team better. Always.”- Marc Bergevin

    • Da Hema says:

      Sweet: it is not so much what the Gretzky trade meant as what it signified. That is where its importance in sports history resides. There have been a range of articles of late discussing this theme, so there is no sense in summarizing their thoughts, but I will make a few comments (and hopefully others will fill in any important omissions).

      The Gretzky trade ended Canadians’ belief that hockey was “our game.” The trade exposed the dark side of the NHL as a business — especially if we note the two sociopathic owners who directed the sale of Gretzky: Bruce McNall and Peter Pocklington. It also signified that the US owners would drive the league, and concomitantly led to declining influence of Canada and Canadian teams in the NHL (e.g., the last Canadian team to win the Stanley Cup was Montreal in 1993).

      It is true Gretzky helped give hockey a more respected place in the US, but the cost of that increased exposure was (and still is) placed on the backs of Canadian fans.

    • Loop_Garoo says:

      For the Habs, I think a pretty decent year, bulldogs still a bit young but better, as for the prospects, looking good, very deep prospects pool and good.

      Greg

  65. HabFab says:

    Almost at the half way point. Canada leads the Swedes 4-1. Fucale has stopped 16 out of 17 shots. No points for Hudon or De La Rose.

  66. Habcouver says:

    Guy’s two goals against the Habs… I cheered so loud at home, the parents thought I went nuts.

    Waiting patiently for #25

  67. HabFab says:

    @markhmasters: Habs’ prospect Collberg (knee) & Pens’ prospect Sundqvist (neck) remain out of Swedish lineup; coach Gronborg says they’re day-to-day

    That sounds more promising.

  68. Lafleurguy says:

    By show of hands, how many have seen Broadway Joe make a pass to NFL receivers, and not female sideline reporters?

    “Where’s the Beef?/What’s the Beef?”

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Raising hand but wondering where the heck that came from. :)

      • Lafleurguy says:

        Mr. Farber’s article above from 1988, and his mention of Willie Mays, Joe Namath, and Gordie Howe. I confess I can’t remember what sport Plato played. Perhaps he ran against Secretariat. Bobby Rousseau was one guy who could skate like Guy Lafleur, but I will take a wild guess that Hobbes was a soccer hooligan, and Nietzsche was in the Bundesliga. Pee Wee Herman was the first winner of Dancing with the Stars, I think, and John Ziegler secretly fathered Gary Bettman, I am guessing.

        “Where’s the Beef?/What’s the Beef?”

    • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

      I don’t know but…is there something wrong with making passes at nice-looking female sideline reporters? (just kidding)

      “You’re always, always, always looking to make your team better. Always.”- Marc Bergevin

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Saw it but didn’t care, he wasn’t Terry Bradshaw so it meant nothing to me! :)

  69. Lafleurguy says:

    Oysters – Yum. A blonde beer, yum.
    Wonder if deer antler spray can make you too corny?
    Kudos to Normand for using the “acid test” metaphor. Litmus developed a quick test to determine if a liquid is acidic or alkaline, not whether it is of good quality. Prospectors of yore used acid to determine if ore contained gold since gold is quite inert and will not oxidize and therefore tarnish.
    Guy had an amazing six year run out of the sixteen he played in total. That’s the Guy I’ll always remember (plus the best goal he ever scored with a helmet on, a snipe to the top corner on Tony Esposito’s gloveside).

    “Where’s the Beef?/What’s the Beef?”

  70. Bill says:

    Farber’s article was a bit snarky. He was writing about a living legend of hockey. Guy Lafleur was my boyhood idol, and no one will ever convince me that anyone was better. Wayne Gretzky could never skate with Lafleur at his peak. I would rather watch Guy making those amazing moves than Gretzky passing from behind the net any day.

    Anyhow, I was a bit surprised by Farber’s dismissive tone. He had no credibility to talk about a real athlete that way.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Lafleur was a rare athlete who could get fans out of their seats at any moment. Maybe because he was an opponent and I am sure I’m in the minority here but for my money Bobby Orr was the best player I’ve ever seen.

      • JUST ME says:

        My point is that i do not mind if they are severe with P.K. au contraire. It did not prevent him from being the best of his trade last season and the way he plays, will get even more recognition from his fellow players. But basically he still is a kid and probably has a few more things to learn. Coaches are hired to do just that.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Lafleur was the best for me. Game in game out.

      Those goals where he streaked down the right side of the ice and unleashed his slapper a few steps over the blue line. None better than the too many men goal against Boston.

    • Da Hema says:

      When Lafleur was in his prime, I do not believe there was a more clutch player. There were better hockey players than Guy Lafleur — not many though — but if I were an NHL coach with my team down by one goal with one minute left in a crucial playoff game, it would be Lafleur I would want to put on the ice.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Love your comments on Guy, he is the man for me, the reason I am a die hard fan. The entire crowd and tv commentary would get on the edge of seats or stand up as soon as he touched the puck.

      To me, he is Magic. Period.

  71. Bill says:

    First??

    Edit: CONFIRMED!

    Full Breezer 4 Life

  72. JUST ME says:

    @florida habs You seem to have forgotten that Lafleur remained on the sidelines, on the bench ,on and off for 3 years before he made it as a regular. I prefer to see players being coached and thought things instead of them having to make it alone and then go away because nobody really told them what was expected of them.

    Is it just me or that Gretzky trade thing is being dragged wayyyyy to long ? I mean it was an important day but come on now …

  73. Maritime Ron says:

    Good discussion yesterday concerning the swarm and the prediction from here is that some type of hybrid will be the system OR the swarm will be used only against chosen opponents

  74. Chris says:

    They were, within the extent that such things are ever prosecuted. You don’t want to see people’s lives ruined by a mistake. The event had already done enough damage.

    It really bothers me how much cyclists and drivers treat one another as enemy combatants. Cyclists are often unnecessarily aggressive and frequently disobey traffic laws, while drivers contemptuously treat cyclists as being unworthy of sharing the road with motorized vehicles.

    Cyclists need to learn to drive more defensively. Being “in the right” doesn’t mean much if you are maimed or killed.

    Drivers need to understand that their aggression can cause death for cyclists.

    Everybody just needs to chill out a bit and share the road.

  75. bwoar says:

    From the streets of Winnipeg – I stopped biking altogether on Portage Avenue this year after a couple decades going in and out of downtown traffic. Braving this town’s Truck Nutz Brigade and the SUV SuperMom Squad on their way to their daily humiliation is one risk too many. Fine when I didn’t have a family, but not cool risking it now.

    “thoroughbred”

  76. SmartDog says:

    Or hanging upside down from the rafters.

    ————————————-
    Can you smell what the dog is sniffin?


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