Habs’ Emelin returns to Montreal for family reasons

Tomas Plekanec, who missed Saturday’s game against the Florida Panthers for family reasons, was back on the ice Monday morning in Florida as the Canadiens practised in preparation for Tuesday’s game against the Tampa Bay Lightning (7:30 p.m., TSN-HABS, RDS, TSN Radio 690).

But the Canadiens announced that defenceman Alexei Emelin had left the team to return to Montreal, also for family reasons. Emelin is expected to rejoin the team in Tampa on Tuesday and be ready to face the Lightning.

“We’re glad to have Pleky back because he does so many things for us,” coach Michel Therrien told reporters after the team practised Monday morning in Sunrise, Fla. “Alexei had to go home for personal reasons, but the good news is that he’ll be back tomorrow.”

Tuesday’s game against the Lightning could be a first-round playoff preview for the teams. The Canadiens (43-26-7) are in second place in the Atlantic Division, two points ahead of the Lightning (41-25-9) with Tampa Bay holding a game in hand. The Boston Bruins (52-17-6) have already clinched first place in the division. The second- and third-place teams in the division will meet in the first round of the playoffs with the second-place team having home-ice advantage.

Is Tuesday’s game a must-win for the Canadiens?

Not necessarily, coach Michel Therrien says.

“We’ll see where we are at the end,” Therrien told reporters. “Our goal is to make the playoffs and we’re in a playoff mindset. We’re going to play hard and it’s going to be good hockey game but, for us, it’s about how we play.”

Max Pacioretty isn’t overly concerned about home-ice advantage in the playoffs.

“Obviously, you want (home-ice advantage) but I’m kind of mixed on it,” he said. “It’s not the worst thing to play two games on the road and then get back into your own bed, but basically it’s the same ice, the same rink, the same players so it doesn’t matter.”

Josh Gorges, who has been out since March 5 with a broken hand, skated Monday with strength and conditioning coach Pierre Allard and hopes to return to the lineup for the final week of the regular season.

“There’s still some swelling and it’s sore around the incision, but it’s healing,” Gorges said Monday.

After Tuesday’s game, the Canadiens will enjoy a day off Wednesday in Florida, then practice in Tampa Thursday before flying to Ottawa, where they will face the Senators Friday night. The Detroit Red Wings will visit the Bell Centre on Saturday night.

Here’s how the lines and defence pairings looked at practice:



(Photo by John Mahoney/The Gazette)

Tampa game looks like playoff preview for Habs, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

Habs post-practice interviews (video), Canadiens.com

Lightning points streak ends at 11 games, NHL.com

Latest Lightning news, Tampa Bay Times

McDonagh on the rise with Rangers, New York Times

Happy birthday to Mr. Hockey, NHL.com

Coach Nolan loses interim tag with Sabres, NHL.com


  1. HabsPooch says:

    Much like the Habs first line, the Devils’ top line is destroying the Panthers. Clowe, Zajac and Jagr haved combined for 11 points tonight. Even at 42, Jagr is still racking up the points with 64 points in 75 games. He would be tops on the Habs.
    How things would have been different with Jagr over Briere in the lineup…

  2. Lafleurguy says:

    Reason for optimism:

    This Week12Last Week9Tampa Bay Lightning41-25-9

    No regulation wins in the past five for the Bolts, who aren’t getting quite the same level of play from G Ben Bishop that they received earlier in the season. Bishop has a .906 save percentage since the Olympics; was .933 before.
    Key Injuries: None.
    -TSN Power Rankings, March 31

  3. Mattyleg says:

    Y’know, I’m sure I’m going to get written out of Mavid’s will, but I don’t really mind the Sens.

    I think it’s kind of a ‘the only thing worse than being talked about…’ thing.

    Even after they knocked us out last year, I don’t care either way about them.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Chuck Kept Calm and Carey'd On says:

      As they say in the entertainment biz, the only thing worse than someone hating you is someone being ambivalent towards you.

  4. HabsPooch says:

    You know what’s amazing about the Leaf collapse is that they’re pretty much 100% healthy. Granted Bernier was out for a few games but overall the injury bug has stayed away…

  5. Hobie Hansen says:

    In years past, if I recall correctly, we’ve been plagued by injuries heading into and during the playoffs. Everyone from Pacioretty, Markov and Emelin, only to name a few. In our miracle run to the 3rd round several years ago, the crushing game 7 loss to Boston and the flop last year, we’ve had several key players missing.

    People have many theories on why we haven’t had a ton of success in the playoffs. Some say it’s depth or not enough star caliber players. Others believe we’ve needed more size and grit

    All are probably valid points but the number one killer has been injuries! I’m just praying we are 95% healthy once the playoffs start.

    Missing Moen would suck, missing Prust would suck a bit more but we could survive. Missing Pacioretty, Vanek or Plekanec would be devastating. Missing Markov or Subban would be a death sentence. Losing Emelin or Gorges would also hurt.

    Anyhow, you get my point. Please let health be on our side for once! If we are lucky enough to get past TB and face Boston in round two, please allow us to get there unscathed.

    Thank you all mighty hockey gods!

    • Marc10 says:

      Agreed. A healthy line up is key, but it’s nice when you’ve got a bit of depth as we do now. Some guys just can’t be replaced.

      To be healthy going in, I’d manage the veterans and Price’s ice time. Not go out of my way to shield them, but to make sure they’re healthy and ready when we need them to be.

      The Ottawa game will be interesting in that respect.

    • JUST ME says:

      Was thinking about the same thing today because tomorrow `s game may just be a good time for some to send messages although Tampa is not of the Bruins kind of messenger but you never know. I do not know what side teams will lean on tomorrow. Winning the race for home ice, clinching a spot in the playoffs, sending messages…

      Also the game against the Sens may be troublesome. If they are out of the playoffs by then of if we are the ones to give the fatal blow they might want to give us a souvenir…

      Hopefully not but the Habs have been on the receiving end of so many of those intimidation or uncalled for gestures that one must be ready to protect out guys heading in the big dance…

      • Loop_Garoo says:

        Tampa is a different type of team than the Bruins, and I don’t think there is any real need to “send a message”, other than to work really hard and beat them soundly. Whenever a hab tries to send a message, it works out badly and they end up looking bad.

        • JUST ME says:

          I was more thinking about being on the receiving end of the message since it is not the Habs style to do so. This relates to the fact that we need to get as healthy as possible in the playoffs.

        • Marc10 says:

          I do think Malone will go out of his way to do his thing. We just need to play a smart road game. Get the lead and get our fans into it.

          Tampa is a great match up because it will be like playing at home in both buildings.

  6. Habcouver says:

    Marty Brodeur pulls himself (from game), letting in 3 goals on 8 shots.

    We Are (Not) All Canucks.
    Proudly Canadian but passionately Canadien!

  7. habs001 says:

    While a long shot if Tampa goes into a slump Detroit could catch them…

  8. Alex says:

    A big game on Tuesday! A good preview of the playoffs and a chance to make ground for home ice. However my sights are set for Friday, I will be at the game in Ottawa and I am hoping to see our Habs stomp the Sens. I could not ask for anything more than to see those Sens fans leaving the building disappointed. I try not to let other teams fans get to me, but the Sens fans are pretty bad and it doesn’t help that I live in Ottawa either.

  9. habsfan0 says:

    As I posted yesterday,there was nary a Toronto Maple Leaf flag spotted in the GTA fluttering from an individual’s car.

    I believe I did spot a white flag of surrender on one vehicle,though.

  10. BramptonHab says:

    Hey HIO members in Quebec. My daughter is majoring in French in university. She is currently working on a project for her Aspects of French Canada course. Part of her project is to find out what Quebecers think of notorious English Canadian individuals. The person she was given to research is Don Cherry. Since this is a hockey related website, I’m sure most if not all members know who he is however I’d still like to invite only the Quebec HIO member to tell me if they know who this individual is and what they think of him.

  11. Mavid says:


    Stoppin Tom would be turning in his grave

    Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

  12. jamman says:

    Stupid Sens. How sweet would it be if we delivered a possible fatal blow to their playoff hopes friday?

  13. Haberoooo13 says:

    From that Twitter thingy:
    The Hockey News ‏@TheHockeyNews 42s
    ICYMI: Less than 1 yr after @MapleLeafs signed Clarkson to a 7-year contract, there’s talk they could buy him out: http://bit.ly/1fGPPWn

    Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

    • stephen says:

      I’m not very well-read on the new CBA, but wouldn’t a buyout for a contract signed after the new CBA still have serious cap ramifications?

      • Haberoooo13 says:

        Per Capgeek’s calculator…he’d take 5.25 mil in capspace for another 6 years.

        Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

        • stephen says:

          Yeesh. Ugly.

          I think Clarkson is suffering from the general chaos that seems to be the Leafs style of play. When you think about it, he was thriving with the Devils, one of the most structured and ‘systematic’ teams in the league.

          I imagine his role was much more clearly defined there and thus more easily fulfilled.

          Pretty certain he can still be an effective 3rd liner, given the right environment. Heck, I’d give him a whirl next year for cheap.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Most of the talking heads say he appears lost on the ice, no idea what he should do. Weird thing is you have to believe Carlyle was consulted on signing him, yet has no idea how to use him.

          • Lafleurguy says:

            Maybe Stephan Waite can coach him…..not goaltending stuff, but how to stay on his feet more and not go down too early.

        • Loop_Garoo says:

          Then it makes no sense, but him out at that price now, and pay someone else 2 Million to take a roster spot? Better to keep him for another year or two and pray he turns it around.

    • CJ says:

      It’s but one part of the hot mess in Toronto. Gleason has two more years at $4 million per season. Dion has seven years at $7 million per season. This is not going to be easy to overcome. Bolland puts them in a tough spot. He wants $5 million long term.

      Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Fool me three plus times….., you must be Dave Nonnis.

  14. habbernack says:

    A win in Tampa takes away one of their games in hand.

  15. DipsyDoodler says:

    OK folks. I am going to vote tonight.

    I feel like Therrien having to choose between Bouillon, Murray and Weaver for his third D pairing.

    You have the corrupt.

    You have the bigots.

    You have Other.


    Moving. Forward.

  16. 24 Cups says:

    Shoutout to the 20 people who voted not to re-sign Markov. What seven Dmen would you see playing for Montreal next year, keeping in mind that having three rookies might well be a recipe for disaster?

    • Marc10 says:

      There’s really no UFA out there we could replace him with. Not his huge minutes. It would be a crater to fill.

      • 24 Cups says:

        Only two teams in the East have two rookie Dmen on the blue line – Boston and Tampa.

        Toronto has Gardiner and Reilly (rookie) on the D and the coach, fans and the media alternate between admiration and hatred on a nightly basis.

        • CJ says:

          Pittsburgh has been forced to field a number of rookie and/or inexperienced pros this season on defence.

          • 24 Cups says:

            The only one used on a regular basis has been Maatta.

            MR Mac – I can’t see Calgary letting Giordano go. Especially seeing that Burke hopes for a quick turnaround (even if that is a pipedream).

          • CJ says:

            Gardner and Reilly are Toronto’s best defenceman. Sad, but true.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        Giordano could, but I’d prefer Markov!

        ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

        • Marc10 says:

          One guy (I like him too) and no guarantee you land him. Meanwhile, Markov has played well, is a consummate professional, and wants to stay.

          Markov is slower than he used to be (and the speed of the game has also picked up lot), but I think he fits in for 2 or 3 years. I’m sure he would get three on the open market so that’s the price we’ll have to pay. He’s earned it. The playoffs will make the case either way.

          • Mr_MacDougall says:

            As far as Markov is concerned if he is an All-Star PP defenceman he’s important. A lethal powerplay is essential for any elite team, I would not let Markov go.

            ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

    • Haberoooo13 says:

      So are you ok with those giving more than 3 years?

      Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

    • CJ says:

      Just to play Devil’s advocate, what are you prepared to give Markov? 3-4 years, at $6 million per season? Secondly, with the exception of the Ducks and Bruins game, has Markov had a consistent performance since the trade deadline? I love the General, but he is held on a pedestal within this community, that places his performance beyond reproach. Would his first pass be easily replaced, no. His work on the PK, no. I’m all for keeping him next season, but he is turning 36 next year. At what point do we begin to integrate our prospects?

      Just a few items to boost conversation. Cheers, CJ

      • peiKC says:

        two years at most and at 4 million, yes, he is smart and wise and a good mentor but at what cost?


        • CJ says:

          We talk about Markov the mentor, but does anyone have proof that he aids in the development of our younger players? I’m asking because I personally don’t know. I think he, along with other veterans, help to role model in how they carry themselves on and off the ice, manage expectations, pressure, finances, but in terms of developing the player, to what degree does Markov help?

          IMO, exposure to situational play helps a player develop. Those mistakes that Tinordi has made this season. They are steps in the development process. This, along with good coaching, helps a young player develop.

          Regarding the post, I agree, two years would be maximum.

          Just my two cents….

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        Integrate prospects when they steal the ice time from Markov. He is only in the way of prospects if they are outplaying him.

        ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

      • jimmy shaker says:

        I think both sides can easily agree on a 3 year 6mill/per and be happy. He never was a great skater, so I’m not worried about that. Gonchar is making 5mill/per in big D at the age of 40 which is crazy, so 3 years at 6mill for marky who wants to stay, who MB wants around as well should be doable. The money isn’t the stickler it’s the term….but at the end of the day, he has to be resigned. Murray, frankie and weaver gone next year making room for tinordi, beaulieu and pateryn or bennet.

        Shaker out!

        • CJ says:

          IMO, it’s not so cut and dry Jimmy. If both sides were so happy, it would have already gotten done.

          I don’t blame either side. Montreal is willing to sign a contract, but prefers to go year by year on one year deals. Markov wants something longer term, likely 3-4 years. It’s a question of who bends.

          Bergevin has to be somewhat hesitant. His success rate with Moen, DD, Emelin, Briere at various intervals must be testing his resolve. It might not be fair, but I can’t imagine those deals not seeping into his subconscious. The Price deal is the one great move thus far, while each of the others has been debated and questioned to length. They might all turn out to be great value, but at various times they have been kicked around pretty badly.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Shea Weber, for whom I am trading Gallagher, Beaulieu and a first round pick to Nashville.

      Moving. Forward.

  17. Danno says:

    All things being equal, if the Habs defeat TBL and the Wings defeat the Bruins in round one, would round two see the Habs face the Wings?


    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

    • 24 Cups says:

      I was under the impression that the league wanted teams to play opponents in their own division. If true, that would probably mean that the winner of the Philadelphia/NYR series would play the winner of the Pens/Washington or Columbus series. That would lead to your scenario of Tampa/Montreal. Of course that would all go out the window if the 7th and 8th place seeds are from the same division.

    • Timo says:

      Would be a great match up IMHO. Lots of skating, lots of goals. I don’t think there is enough valium to provide for another Habs-Bruins match up.

    • Habilis says:

      Yep. The wild cards that face the Pens and Bruins are then locked in to those respective divisions until the conference finals, regardless of which division they originated from.

      • Timo says:

        Why can’t they just do top 8 in the conference? Honestly.

        • Habilis says:

          To be fair, the top 8 teams are still the ones that get in. The NHL claims that these match-ups will help promote divisional rivalries down the road.

          Initially, I was against it also. But after watching it work for a season and seeing the potential match-ups unfold, I’m really starting to like it.

  18. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …We will be the only Canadian-based team to participate in this season’s NHL play-offs

    …to be fair, We, Ourselves, were ‘bad’ enough to finish with the third worse performance in the NHL only 2 seasons ago

    …is there ‘a handicap’ inherent in being a Canadian-based team in the NHL compared to outlier outposts/destinations like Anaheim, Phoenix, Los Angeles, St Louis, Tampa Bay or other American hockey markets that year in year-out mostly are competitive NHL teams despite the sport being an after-thought of the majority of their fan-bases ?

    …it seems to Me, over the past 1 to 15 seasons there have only been 2 or 3 of the 7 Canadian-based teams that have in any one of those years had been among the 12 or so teams qualifying …none, excepting the Vancouver Canucks, had any realistic prospect of reaching the quarter-finals, let alone the Stanley Cup final

    …what are holding back Canadian teams ?

    …the ‘pressure’ to succeed from it’s fan bases ? …enfeebled management ? …preference of UFA elite players to choose a warmer more ‘exotic’ lifestyle outside the rink, lower taxes ?

    …will We ever see the day when most all Canadian teams will be dominant again ? …or, because of the inherent variables, will it be only be the ‘occasiona’l Canadian team that will be the exception, as are Our Habs this year ?

    …would like to hear some opinions what has to change before most of the 7 Canadian teams are on a par with the Blues, Kings, Bruins, Lightnings, or even the Coyotes ?

    …is it cyclical ? …or is it just ‘something’ inherent ?

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I refuse to say the Leafs won’t make the playoffs. The minute I say it, the Leafs will get on a role, Columbus’s tough schedule at the end will haunt them, Washington will refuse to play defence and before you know it Ron Maclean and Don Cherry will be exercising their forearms on each other.

      Nope, don’t say they are out until they are out. Lets not jinx this.

    • Stanley Cup or Bust ! says:

      Bettman said it during the last lockout.
      Canadian fans will just come back.
      No room for monetary growth here.
      Mature market.
      Whether we win or lose doesn’t matter do them.
      So they manipulate things to get the american teams to win.
      Statistically someone should have won the Cup since we last did.

      • Habitant in Surrey says:

        …Bettman and a US-centric NHL head-office is another story, but they do not run/manage the individual Canadian franchises

        …there’s more to understand than that

      • DipsyDoodler says:

        But four different Canadian teams made it to the finals since 1993. If the league is really manipulating the outcomes, they aren’t very good at it.

        Moving. Forward.

    • Coach K says:

      Habitant in Surrey…good discussion question.

      For the conspiracy theorists out there wondering about why Canadian teams are not winning cups…remember, the only thing that the NHL truly has control over is the officials. They pay their salary and could potentially force them to do what they are told.

      The point is this: if the NHL wanted to ensure certain teams will win they would probably fail but that doesn’t meant they can’t try to influence the outcomes anyway. And I feel they do. Every time the refs ‘put their whistles away” because they “don’t want to influence the outcome of the game” well guess what? The very act of doing nothing most definitely influences the outcome because it allows those who don’t play by the rules the opportunity to prevail. Some here would say the Bruins and other teams that resort to thuggery provide a good example. And we all know that is exactly what happens in the playoffs.

      The players on the other hand are a much tougher nut to crack. That’s because the one variable the NHL cannot control is the fact that every player who ever made it to the NHL has within them, a burning desire to win. That has been ingrained in them since they were little kids and I highly doubt that it can be switched off. Without it they never would have made it out of minor hockey. No corporate shill, no matter how clever or devious, could ever contain that; particularly en mass. That said, the league may not be able to “guarantee that the fix is in” but they most certainly can stack the deck in their favour if they so choose. Am I wrong??

      Just sayin’…

      —When Hell freezes over, I’ll play hockey there too—

  19. HabinBurlington says:

    Jays taking a cue from the Leafs it appears. Rough start for Dickey, and even worse Reyes leaves the game with Hamstring almost before the game starts….. Eeesh bad start to season.

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      Dickey is clearly overmatched as a #1 starter. If he finishes with a .500 record it’d be great. I expect similar to last season, Buehrle the same.

      If this team is going to contend they will need a huge contribution from two of Hutch, Morrow, and McGowan. Also, if you’re an astute baseball fan you would have noticed how Sonny Gray broke in with A’s last year. He pitched no more than 5 innings his first 7-8 starts and then up to 6 innings, and he was dominant. It is possible Aaron Sanchez busts onto the scene for the Jays this year in a similar manner (160 innings tops).

      They have the defence, bullpen, and batting… Starting Pitching will tell the tale. Also, they have no depth at Infield, outfield, or catcher so are verrrry dependant on health.

      ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

      • HabinBurlington says:

        I think the key for the Jays is Brandon Morrow, he is absolute top notch when healthy, unfortunately it was for that reason Seattle gave up on him. If he can be healthy the Jays may indeed have an ace.

        I still wonder about the leadership on the team, and worry the Field boss doesn’t bring enough of that leadership either.

        There is talent on the roster, but you are correct, you are only as good as your pitching.

    • Habilis says:

      This makes me happy.

      I know there’s a lot of you on here that like the Jays, and I get that some of you live in Ontario and what not so I understand the attachment there.

      But I will never understand how anyone who was born and bred in Montreal (as I was) can cheer for any team from Toronto. I just can’t do it, ever. I hate the Leafs, Jays, Raps, and any other team that comes out of that squalid hellhole.

      But that’s just me. 😀

  20. HabinBurlington says:

    I was expecting a new bar and maybe a nice new Big Screen TV in the lounge after all the rennovations today. 😉

  21. RiverviewCanadien says:

    Reposting from last night…be a shame to let these go to waste!

    Hey everyone,

    I have two seats to the Detroit vs Montreal game this Saturday that I am not going to be able to use.

    Level: White Section
    Section: 330
    Row: FF
    Seats: 5&6

    I am not looking to make money on these, just need to get what I have into them.

    $135 x 2 = $270 (this will include shipping)
    EDIT: paypal or e-transfer

    If interested, email me just_fastcars@yahoo.com and we can exchange details.

    Folks, it’s Bushmills time, and that’ll keep ya warm!

  22. SmartDog says:

    What’s the scuttlebut on Emelin? Anyone know?

    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

  23. Storman says:

    I was actually hoping Rouyn-Noranda would have lost to the Remparts so we would have also got to see Jack Nevins in Hamilton to end the season,, he is one of those type of guys that fights with a smile on his face..

    • B says:

      He signed a 3 year deal with the Habs. You will see him eventually.

      –Go Habs Go!–

      • Storman says:

        I know he is signed,, I was just hoping the Huskies would have been eliminated by Quebec,, and then i could have gotten A little look see of him against men, before next year’s camp..

        • B says:

          There’s nothing wrong with him getting some more playoff experience. I like that he has 3 goals and 3 assists in 5 playoff games (so far), a guy who can fight and bang but is not a liability on the ice.

          –Go Habs Go!–

          • Storman says:

            and is a +7 in those 5 games,,,,, but realistically he has nothing more to learn from the Q as an over aged Junior, QMJHL playoffs pale in comparison to what he would have learned in the AHL even for 8 games.. it would have been very good for him to get a little taste of professional hockey before next years camp,, learn a little about what it takes to compete, 200ft game and even fight at the next level,, just being around the pro atmosphere and environment would have helped his summer preparation big time..

          • B says:

            +6 (but who’s counting 🙂 Reway is a +15 wow!

            –Go Habs Go!–

      • Another good sized forward. Now all they need to do is learn how to shoot the puck and score!

        I’m speechless! 20 years and counting…

  24. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …so, what are the odds that Leiweike offers the deed to Fort Knox to hire Phil Jackson to replace Dave Nonis ?

    …nutz !!! You say ?

    …it IS Turdranna We’re speakin’ ’bout here

  25. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …Gustav Nyquist

    …another Red Wings’ late round (4rth, 117) draft pick from Sweden

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      The funny thing is that the two guys they drafted ahead of Nyquist (in rounds one and three) never made it to the NHL.

      Moving. Forward.

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      It’s been a long road since he was drafted in June 2008. The wings drafted him after he played two seasons of Junior hockey in Sweden and then went on to play three seasons for Maine in the NCAA, lead his team in points all three season and the league in points in his final season along with a Hobey Baker nomination. He went on to play most of the next two seasons in the AHL and averaged just over a point per game.

      It’s too bad kids that play in the CHL are I eligible for the NCAA.

      ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

    • Habitant in Surrey says:

      …rare that Detroit picks ahead of Us at the drafts …yet look at the quality difference between the Grand Rapid Griffens and the Hamilton Bull Dogs

      …light years

      • JUST ME says:

        I agree that the talent pool is not up to par in Hamilton. Let`s hope that next season with all the new players coming from the Bergevin era we will turn the page on that. Also note that guys like Nyquist have all the time they want to get mature and to reach their full potential in the Red Wing`s farm team. Here in MTL we want the Tinordis and the Beaulieus with the big team now,today,right now.

        I guess that for now since out resources are scarce we do not have the choice but to be successfull let`s hope that things will change in the next years. Coming from the western conference i trust Bergevin to aim in that direction and as he said go with the draft process…

  26. Maritime Ronn says:

    Connor Crisp will join Hamilton and finish the year there.
    Could be interesting

  27. Ian Cobb says:

    I left you a comment below!

  28. twilighthours says:


    you there?

    I guess conditions at the Barkley were insane. Imagine your favourite double-black diamonds at the local ski resort. Then turn them into slick mud, thorns, and briars. Now try to hike up them in the dark while looking for a paperback novel or two.

    My buddy – while cut off – came in ahead of a bunch of previous racers, and even a few finishers. So he’s pretty stoked.

  29. Mr_MacDougall says:


    The whole concept of “finishing checks” is preposterous. What it really means is “if a player moves the puck before you get to him, make sure you hit him late, it doesn’t matter that it’s illegal, do it anyway.”

    I don’t think any player should be hit for “admiring his pass” or on a follow through on a shot. There is no sportsmanship in those plays, it’s just “getting a lick in” on the vulnerable player.

    The only time checking should be permitted is on a puck carrier. The Emelin on Lucic hit comes to mind as a great open ice check on an opponent separating him from the puck. Toews moved the puck and Orpik took advantage of him and his hit had no effect on the play whatsoever.

    ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  30. Maritime Ronn says:

    Hi TIMO

    You were a little tough/rough on Plex and Emelin earlier on concerning building a family.
    You said, ” …it is not a rocket science to calculate 9 moths”

    Is calculating “9 moths” like calculating caterpillars turning to butterflies?
    There is a relation there, yet Plex and Yemelin deserve better treatment than being compared to an almost insect belonging to the Order of Lepidoptera.
    To answer your question about Coach Therrien….Take this one to the Bank… and Vegas.

    June 15-2014
    GM Bergevin Press Conference:

    I am pleased to announce that Coach MiCHEL Therrien has accepted a contract extension with les Canadiens de Montreal.

    His outstanding work over the past 2 years with the team has been remarkable.
    Since MICHEL took over after the 2013 Lockout, les Canadiens have the 7th best record in the NHL. (Fact)

    Le Club de Hockey Canadiens will continue its march towards excellence with acquiring character and talented hockey players, and we have great confidence that Coach MiCHEL Therrien will coach and guide this team towards excellence in the coming years.

  31. What percentage of the commentariat believe Boston got lucky with their comeback last year against TO and their overtime win over the Habs in the 7th game in 2011? Seems to me they just don’t get it in the first round and are available to be bounced if their opponent wants it more.

    If Detroit gets healthy and the league doesn’t instruct the refs to let the Booins crash and smash, Detroit can move forward. (no flopping Marchaaaaan!)

    I’m speechless! 20 years and counting…

  32. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …I really really have zilch to say …really

  33. PrimeTime says:

    Nice essay UCE but Toews would be the first to disagree with you IMO. He wouldn’t want to be treated differently than any other teammate. The NHL equivalent to a NFL QB is the goaltender and rules are in pace to protect them.

  34. jimmy shaker says:

    Whatever happened to the guy that came over with bourque? And the other guy that came over with Eller? Are they still around in the system?

    shaker out!

    • mark-ID says:

      Holland came over with Bourque and is with the Bulldogs. He hasn’t done much though. Schultz I believe came over with Eller…..but he is no longer around. I’m not even sure he is in the AHL anymore.

      “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

    • Storman says:

      Patrick Holland was up from Hamilton with the Habs earlier this season got 5 games with the big boys primarily on the 4rth line,, played well did not register a point but was an even in the plus minus category. Ian schultz played a couple of seasons in Hamilton and then in his 3rd season he got assigned to Wheeling Nailers of the ECHL, where he has since been traded a couple of times, I think he played for the San Francisco Bulls last year until..The Bulls actually folded and I am not sure if Schultz became a free agent or if his AHL rights are still owned by Hamilton. but basically he is a minor league lifer slap shot type player..

    • twilighthours says:

      In my 30 years of being a fan, Ian Shultz is the worst skater I’ve ever seen don a Habs jersey.

  35. mark-ID says:

    Looks like Crisp will be joining Bulldogs for rest of the season. Should be fun to see what he can do out there.

    This according to his twitter.

    “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

    • mark-ID says:

      Funny how people were just wondering today about why Vail hadn’t been signed yet. Good stuff.

      “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

      • Kooch7800 says:

        he is only signed to a PTO though if I am not mistaken

        • mark-ID says:

          Yea, it will be nice shot in the arm for the Dogs to finally get some of Bergevin’s picks on the roster in the next year.

          “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

          • Kooch7800 says:

            Crisp is a big boy and could be a good bottom 6 guy in a couple years. Vail is a defensive type forward that could be very useful as well.

            Now if we can just Resign Vanek

    • Kooch7800 says:

      I am really interested to see how both do with the dogs. I will have to go to the game on the 12th. Crisp if he plays the way he did in the OHL will be a welcomed addition to the bulldogs (and the habs down the road)

  36. DipsyDoodler says:

    When athletes give 110%:


    Moving. Forward.

  37. Ian Cobb says:

    I am going out on a limb here, but the odds and ghost’s of the Mtl. Forum are with me!

    After we send the Penguin’s to the golf course in 6 or 7 games, we are going to the conference finals against Boston this spring.

    Now things get scarey!!

    • CJ says:

      Hi Ian,

      Trusting all is well. Regarding the Bruins, we will need to beat them in the second round. The playoff format has changed, so barring first round upsets, we are on a collision course to meet in the second round.

      On an aside, I would like to offer my services to support, in any capacity, the Summit you have hosted in the past. I welcome the opportunity to discuss further, at your convenience.

      Cheers, CJ

      • Ian Cobb says:

        Thanks CJ,
        I did not get the new format, so we will have to take them out in the second round!
        I will be ordering our Summit game tickets as soon as the new schedule comes out. We get 1st crack at them before they go on sale to the general public. After which I organize the weekend that I choose in the fall. Stat tuned during that time frame. It has to be a Saturday night game and before we get to much snow for people that drive a long way. Thanks for the offer CJ.

    • Danno says:


      20 + 1 + 4 = 25

      Stay tuned…


      “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
      Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Hoping the Bruins get taken out by Detroit in Round One.

      Moving. Forward.

  38. Un Canadien errant says:

    I have to admit I’m confused by what is or isn’t charging or boarding in the NHL, since what is in the rulebook, as highlighted in Chris’ post earlier, isn’t what we see on the ice when we’re watching games. TV analysts also do a poor job of explaining rules and referring to the rulebook themselves, think about all the natter about ‘distinct kicking motion’, or in football ‘the empty hand’ when trying to decide if a quarterback fumbled or made an incomplete pass. No one ever stops and says “Here is what the rule says, here are two clips that show a fumble, and an incompletion, you’ll note that the quarterbarck’s hand is ’empty’ when…”

    I’ll just make the general point that if the hit on Jonathan Toews is not against the rules and isn’t ‘suspendable’, then it darn well should be. If there is a play or a rule that tilts the ice towards the less-talented player, and makes star players more vulnerable to injury, shouldn’t you change that rule, or the way it’s enforced, right quick?

    The NFL passed the Brady rule a few seasons back, after Tom Brady’s knee was blown out on the first series of the first game of the year. A defensive player who had been blocked came in low at Tom Brady, and partly in a desperation do-anything-to-sack-the QB mindset, but with a healthy dose of make-the-quarterback-pay, make-sure-he’s-not-too-comfortable-back-there, let-him-know-we’re-coming philosophy, dived into his knee, rupturing his ACL and putting him out for the year.


    The NFL reacted instantly, forbidding low tackles, or tackles around the knees when the quarterback is in the pocket, based on a simple fact: the NFL is better off with Tom Brady on the field playing, on your TV screens, than it is with him gone for a whole season, and returning with possibly diminished skills due to lengthy recovery periods. It’s obviously better for the league, for everyone involved, that the stars of the game, the Bradys and Mannings and Rodgers, be allowed to play and entertain and wow us. And that includes the defensive players and the old-timers who whine that “you can’t touch a quarterback anymore, why, back in the day, we would…” Even those guys are making money, and will make more, if the NFL is successful and draws eyeballs and the ratings go up. If Matt Cassel and Cade McNown and Luke McCown are on the field, the NFL is worse off than if those guys are holding clipboards and the #1’s are on the field flinging the pigskin.

    And the Brady rule is just one thing the NFL did to protect its stars. You also can’t hit a quarterback on the helmet, with any force at all. You were just trying to bat down a pass, and your arm grazed Ben Roethlisberger’s helmet as you whizzed by? Tough noogies, you’re not allowed to touch him there. Hit the quarterback a half-second after he’s passed the ball? You kind of held up anyway, since you sensed you might get there late? Not an excuse, that’s a fifteen yard penalty, explain it to your coach.

    There used to be situations that would make old-timers gleeful, like how on an interception, the offensive team now is playing defence, and is trying to tackle the ballcarrier, so the defence can now block the offence to improve the return yards. Well, what that used to mean was ‘open-season’ on the quarterback, he was now a target for every defensive player to make a huge block on, and knock him into next week. Defensive tackles and linebackers would converge on the quarterback, no matter where the return was headed, and try to put as big a lick on him as they could, to knock him out of the game.

    Quite reasonably, and to protect its stars and its investment, the NFL legislated that you can’t block the quarterback anymore, unless he’s actively engaged in trying to make a tackle. And of course, coaches are telling their QB’s to walk over to the sideline when they make an interception, not to worry about tackling, save yourself for the next series.

    Gary Bettman and his nincompoops in New York don’t get that. You would think that the Commissioner, who comes from a basketball background with the NBA, would understand the merit of trying to showcase your stars, of giving your league the best chance of being spectacular and successful. Instead, he makes ice in L.A. and is looking to putting on games in Europe, but doesn’t worry about the quality of the product. He’s the restaurant owner who only cares about sales and seatings, but not the quality of the food or the reviews and feedback. If patrons come and don’t enjoy the food, we’ll take care of that by doing more marketing and getting other patrons, he thinks, not by making sure every meal is superb and grow the business organically, by word of mouth, through customer loyalty. As if there’s an infinite pool of patrons that are lining up to your restaurant that doesn’t care about its food quality.

    Whether that’s stupidity or willful blindness, or something more pernicious is open to question. I can’t shake the memory of the horrible series of commercials the NHL used to re-launch the league after its suicidal lockout of 2004-05. That the league chose to use actors and generic ‘warriors’, faceless nobodies to showcase itself is instructive.


    The Lightning and Flames had played in the Stanley Cup final the last time it was awarded, with moderately exotic, immensely photogenic and likeable stars Vincent Lecavalier and Jarome Iginla as their respective captains. The champion Lightning also had Brad Richards on its roster for the teeny-boppers to swoon over.

    The league was full of bankable stars. Towering defencemen Zdeno Chara and Chris Pronger were certainly worthy of attention. Classy, superb scorers Markus Naslund and Ilya Kovalchuk had been featured in a memorable Nike ad that displayed their personality and sense of humour. Even voluble goofball Georges Laraque, larger than life, could have been harnessed to win over casual fans.

    Instead, the NHL went with nameless soldiers, replaceable plugs, to showcase itself. It’s bizarre, baffling, but only so if you don’t take into account the meanness, the adversarial stance the league has taken toward its players. The NBA embraces Michael Jordan, knowing full well what it’s doing. The NHL locks out its stars, eyes replacement players, believes that fans will watch whoever as long as they’re garbed in the right branded jersey.

    So when it comes to the play on the ice, the NHL runs commercials with words like ‘battle’ and ‘warriors’, and revels in bloodied faces as proof that the players care and the games mean something. And it gets sucked into that motif, and circles closer and closer to the drain. Instead of caring about the show, and ensuring that Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin are featured and at their best, they propound the meatgrinder aspect of its game as somehow noble, not self-defeating.

    If the NHL had any sense, the Jonathan Toews would be seen as a problem, and would rule it as such, either by drawing up new rules, or more simply by interpreting its current rules strictly. It should very simply announce to the world, and directly to its teams, players, GM’s, coaches, and fans, that the National Hockey League is a skill league, a talent league, and that the talent is cherished, valuable, and worth protecting. Things that take away from talent, like hooking and slashing and boarding and kneeing, they’ll all be punished harshly, and not judged based on severity, but objectively, absolutely. There will be no kneeing, no slashing, no headhunting.

    The Brooks Orpik hit on Jonathan Toews was against the NHL’s own rules, in that he wasn’t carrying or handling the puck at the time. It was also high-sticking, in that Mr. Orpik lost control of his stick and swung it wildly in the air as he made contact. The play-by-play guys can dissemble all they want, inured as they are by the routine thuggery and lawlessness in the NHL, it still doesn’t change the fact that the NHL is refusing to enforce its own rulebook.

    Curmudgeons will attack this view and state that they think the game is fine and don’t want to watch hockey refereed any other way. These same curmudgeons also attack the NFL when it takes steps to protect its stars, its quarterbacks, its defenseless players. They prophesy that the game is being debased, is being ‘pansified’, will be killed with too much kindness. Yet the League grows in leaps and bounds, by every measure, everyone involved getting richer. While the NHL stagnates by comparison.

    My sources are unreliable, but their info is fascinating.–Woody Paige


    • CJ says:

      Excellent post. Unfortunately, I think it brought down the network!

      Kidding aside, the game needs to grow and move forward. Not unlike baseball we are ruled by the old guard. The time has come for new ideas, born on the backs of new faces. I love the game with all my heart, however there are flaws, which were once underlying, which have now become surface cracks.

      Just my two cents….

    • Caesar says:

      Agree whole heartedly.

    • Wow UCE! Shame the league isn’t reading. Blockheads like money-boy Bettman don’t care, yet it is the talent that pays his check. Couldn’t agree more, but hey, I keep thinking about the hockey play Chara leveled on our own Max. Something stinks in fish-town with mad-man Jacobs and his cow Campbell.

      I’m speechless! 20 years and counting…

  39. mdp2011 says:

    This is pretty cool.

    THe science behind the slapshot.


    • Un Canadien errant says:

      That’s why you need upper body strength to shoot well, timing and skill only take you so far. That’s why Scott Gomez could only flutter the puck at the goalie.

      Then again, Wayne Gretzky. So I’ll be quiet now.

    • adamkennelly says:

      love it – I used to coach kids hockey – spent so much time trying to explain this – ice , puck, flex, release etc..some guys got it, some guys don’t – not really about upper body strength per say – more about positioning, transfer of momentum, timing and forearm/wrist power. this is great teaching tool however.

    • Chris says:

      We had one of those cameras in my lab. I always wanted to do this test, but have the shooter actually strike the puck first, instead of the ice.

      You should still get a lot of whip on the stick, and I suspect that the puck will really hop out of there, making it tougher for the goalie to see.

      Unfortunately, my slapshot is more Gomezian than Subbanian. There was a great video of Kovalev demonstrating his wrist-shot technique: he applied all his force into the ice to get the flex, allowing him to generate a pretty ridiculous amount of velocity. For a lot of today’s players, they don’t really generate that power on their wrist shot anymore, because they are often pulling it from too far behind them. Galchenyuk is a notable exception…his wrist shot is lethal. He needs to use it more.

      • twilighthours says:

        See, I think today’s players shoot the puck harder, and release it more quickly, than ever before. Wrist, snap, slap, whatever. On every replay, you can see the stick flex an incredible amount. Even when these guys are making their saucer passes they are flexing the stick. And that comes from getting behind the puck.

  40. HabsPooch says:

    Luke Gazdic out six months with a shoulder injury. We’ll scrap the plans on hoping to aquire him now…

    • CJ says:

      Plan B, Anthony Peluso. Not a big step down either. Big, good skater, willing and able.

      For those “show me” types, take a look at his exchange with Jarod Cowen from the Sens three weeks ago, or the manner in which he handled Patrick Bordeleau, one of the toughest in the business. This is the kind of deterant we need, an up and comer.

      • HabsPooch says:

        What are your thoughts on Matt Kassian, CJ. You probably watch him more closely than most. He’s got quite the size on him too.

        • CJ says:

          Hi Pooch. I’ve seen him live and on television a number of times. He is a monster. In terms of fighting skill, he is decent – probably top 15, but he lacks the ability to play the game. He is the definition of a one dimensional player.

          • HabsPooch says:

            As long we get a guy that’s young and hungry I will be happy. Parros, I respect him for his brain being a Princeton grad, has had better days and should be thinking about taking care of his brain.

          • CJ says:

            No doubt George is finished. Not that further validation was required, however that fight with Barch on Saturday night was the end. Parros did not even attempt to engage, and tied up a weaker opponent. He fought scared and he fought not to lose. When that happens, it’s the end of the road.

    • Strummer says:

      He plays 2-3 minutes a night on the worst team in the league.
      Fighting is down 17% from last year.
      The days of the one-dimensional fighter are numbered.
      Why would any team hope to acquire him?
      “It’s just an opinion- I could be wrong”

      • CJ says:

        I agree, the one dimensional fighter is done. Parros is that kind of guy. Too slow to keep up with the play. Can’t throw a decent check, sustain a cycle or otherwise contribute. Gadzic is not this guy, neither is Peluso.

        Granted the days of Probert scoring 78 points are over, but keep in mind the game has changed. A fourth liner who can fight, skate, check, kill penalties and sustain a cycle in the offensive zone still has a place in the game today. We can argue the merits of fighting all day, but so long as it is in the game, why not have a guy on the team who is capable? IMO, Peluso is a bigger Ryan White. I can’t speak to his character, but he gets up and down the ice, has size and can fight. A line with White, Weise and Peluso could do well.

        Just my two cents…

    • Is that Gainey with his poodle cut?

      I’m speechless! 20 years and counting…

    • adamkennelly says:

      that sucks about Gadzic but he was not going anywhere…easy to see why – there are none like him – young, big, can play decent and scary good scrapper.

      I’m really ok with no HW on our team – as long as we have 3 to 4 other guys who can take care of business – we really need 1 more…Mr. Clune outta Nashville fits the bill – or Tom Wilson from Washington – another pretty good one.

  41. 24 Cups says:

    Gordie Howe started playing in the NHL three years before Mike Boone and I were born. Now, after all these years, Mike and I are just starting our old age pensions while Gordie celebrates his 86th birthday. I still remember collecting his hockey cards and calling out to be #9 when we played road hockey. Here are his career stats as a pro hockey player in the NHL and WHA. This man is truly a legend of our time.


    Happy birthday, Gordie!

  42. CJ says:

    Good afternoon.

    Not sure if it has been posted already, but it appears Bourque is uphappy with his demotion to the fourth line. Frankly, on nearly any other team, in any other sport, his play would result in a one way ticket out of town. I know its comparing apples and hammers, but the NFL sure gets this right. D. Jackson in Philly – bye, bye. Rene Bourque, two more years….. Yikes!

    Bourque needs to channel this energy into a positive outcome, ideally on the ice, something that has been missing since last year’s playoffs. I can accept errors. Tinordi has made mistakes, Frankie, Eller, the list goes on. But at least these guys are trying. Nothing worse than watching a guy stand there as your Captain is hammered and you skate the other way. Unacceptable. If we had more healthy bodies I am sure he would be in the press box, working on paper airplanes for the playoffs.

    Switching gears, I just want to publicly acknowledge those forum members who engaged in the statistical debate last night. I don’t know that I have had such a respectful exchange with complete strangers. There were different opinions and ideologies, but the fact is, the participants brought their issues/comments forward in a respectful manner. For this, I am greatly appreciative.

    I see a fundemental shift in the climate (mood) on this forum and I think it has more to do with the participants than the results. I only hope my contributions have helped advance this mandate.

    Have a great day everyone! Cheers, CJ

    • UKRAINIANhab says:

      What did good ole Bork say? God, is there a more frustrating player in the whole league?

      • CJ says:

        Hi UC!

        Sorry, my French is not up to par, but I saw an article on twitter following practice. Perhaps someone could do the pleasure of providing a Coles notes translation….

      • shiram says:

        That he’d prefer to play with 3rd line, Brère/Eller, instead of 4th line, White/Bournival.
        But that’s out of his control.

        • CJ says:

          Funny, I disagree. It was completely within his control. The change was made based on his play. He will stick out like a sore thumb beside White and Bournival, who skate and bring maximum effort every time they hit the ice.

          I hate having favorite players. The crest means more to me than the name on the back of the sweater, but Ryan White is my guy. He has grown leaps and bounds from last week. All he does is lace up his skates and go about his business at 110%. The fact that he cut his hair off to support a young child dealing with illness only helps to further illustrate his character.

    • Steven Snell says:

      I’ve heard this bandied about as well. Who does he think should be there instead? He should be happy to be playing at all.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      I have been a Bourque supporter but there is no way around it he has sucked the high hard one this year and he needs to own that himself. He wants more ice he needs to earn it.

      Him an Eller need to look in the mirror this year and try and figure it out.

      • CJ says:

        At least with Eller he is trying. The results (Eller) are discouraging, but his effort is still there. When you no longer try and remain in the lineup, it provides the wrong message. As noted, as soon as we have Prust, Weise or Moen ready, Bourque should be out.

        • Kooch7800 says:

          I agree and I am a Bourque fan. He needs to play like he did his first game back after being benched. Show the fire again.

          What scares be about Eller he is trying and some of the mistakes he is making on a regular basis are not that of a top 6 forward.

          I have a feeling Eller might be gone in the off season. Bourque will be gone if they can get something for him.

          • CJ says:

            Agreed on all points. Eller is tough/frustrating. I do see potential, but his confidence is so low right now it would take more than a goal to break out of the prolonged slump.

            It’s a results based business and frankly he has not shown enough this year to year a promotion into the top six. He may, as you have suggested and to which I agree, end up on the way out. On one hand I hope not, while on the other I would like to see what value he holds.

  43. Timo says:

    THat’s pretty bad planning on part of Pleks and Emelin. I mean there are calendars available and it is not a rocket science to calculate 9 moths from the time of… coitus (give and take a few weeks).

    Unless they were not planning on making playoffs, of course.

    Is Michael Therrien still the coach?

  44. DipsyDoodler says:

    From the website Eyes on the Flight Plan (a blog on air travel)


    After piloting Lufthansa 802 from Montreal to Frankfurt, Capt. Julian Flieger has once again shown that he understands nothing about flying airplanes. More worryingly Lufthansa has shown it knows nothing about hiring pilots.

    The passengers only noticed that the flight arrived 5 minutes ahead of schedule after an uneventful flight unaffected by turbulence. But that goes to show the fundamental lack of understanding that comes from only evaluating outcomes. Deep analytics once again reveal a laughable series of basic mistakes. I googled the data on air currents over the North Atlantic from mid-March to mid-April, and clearly the route chosen by Capt. Flieger was laughably inadequate for any vessel more advanced than a Zeppelin.

    Moreover his decision to fly an Airbus A330 shows a lack of trust in more modern planes. United are already flying Boeing Dreamliners. If it was me I’d definitely bench the A330.

    Do any of our so-called journalists have the courage to ask the uncomfortable questions?

    But the real problem is that the money keeps rolling in so why should Lufthansa make a change. Providing safe and professional service should be a bare minimum, not a guarantee of keeping your job.


    Great post Andrew. I really hope Lufthansa hire you as their analytics guy.

    Good points. And did you notice they have Rolls Royce engines? They really have no clue!

    What did you think about having the wingflaps down during take-off? Shouldn’t they be up?

    Oh – Can you blog about orthopedic surgery some day?

    Moving. Forward.

  45. Luke says:

    Masters’ tweets this quote:

    30 minutes ago
    markhmasters: Franson on TO angst: “I mean, we want to win more than the fans do. We don’t go out there with the intention to disappoint.”

    Like, what I mean is: could he not have started his quote at the “we”.
    Did we, y’know, need the “I mean” or whatever?

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      He could also have omitted ” we want to win more than the fans do. We don’t go out there with the intention to disappoint.”

      Moving. Forward.

    • Mattyleg says:

      Perhaps it was because he was clarifying what he’d said earlier.

      Like, “The fans are blathering whoremongers.”
      “What do you mean by that, exactly, Cody?”
      “I mean, we want to win… etc.”

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Strummer says:

      Hockey players in press scrums NEVER have anything interesting to say yet reporters continually ask the same questions they have been asking the Leafs every post-game for the last 2 weeks.

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

  46. frontenac1 says:

    Hey what’s with all the secrecy about the Lads Wives popping out Rug Rats? Is it a lower body thing or what?

  47. Mattyleg says:

    Here’s a question:

    Hey, secondary scoring!

    Remember that?

    Are Galchenyuk or Gallagher ever going to score another goal?

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • kalevine says:

      Gallagher has been not so impressive from a skills perspective lately. I see him making less than crisp passes, having trouble receiving passes, and missing good chances. I think both he and Galchenyuk will pick it up. Anyway, Galchenyuk’s SO goal against the B’s really upped his stock around the league

      • The_Truth says:

        I agree on Gally, He is a tireless worker, but his offensive game isn’t that high from a skills perspective. I think he could learn a lot from Vanek, as far as his front of the net play. Last season he seemed to have a killer shot, but haven’t seen much of that this season.

        Chucky has higher skill level, but is also learning positioning in the Ozone. Both guys are very young and will improve. Hard to say how good they will be. Could Gally become a 30 goal man? Chucky a PPG player with 30 goals? Both of them should reach that level at some point.

        • Mr_MacDougall says:

          Wow, I got ripped to shreds for saying that about Gallagher Saturday night..

          ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

        • Mattyleg says:

          HE’S BACK!


          —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • The_Truth says:

          Gally has been struggling a little since being taken away from DD and Max, but he still will have about 20 goals and 40 points. Very good for a 21 year old with his size and was drafted in the 5th round.

          Chucky has great skill and work ethic as well. He is finding his game and really is young with not very much experience. Playing only 100 games in junior and 100 in the NHL in his life. Don’t think Eller helped him very much either, having totally lost his game.

          Both guys will be more than fine and will be very good players and moe consistent producers in the next few years. With their attitudes, I am not worried.

    • Ozmodiar says:

      >Remember that?

      I do! Last Thursday.

      Those were the days…

      • Mattyleg says:

        Ancient history, Ozy.
        Stop living in the past!
        Did they step up yesterday?
        Or today??

        (sits back satisfied, opens a can of Tab and takes a small sip)

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

  48. CH Marshall says:

    good for Nolan… Also relieved because now the leafs can’t hire him lol

  49. Mattyleg says:

    Been 10 mins or so since the last post!

    So we’re all happy with Therrien then?

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  50. ont fan says:

    Federal league fight in Danville. They square to fight, dance a bit, then hug each other, pull out a beer and skate around rink with arms around each other.

  51. BriPro says:

    The importance of tomorrow night’s game?

    If they win, they clinch a playoff spot.
    If they lose in OT or in regulation, along with a loss by Washington, they’re in.
    And it they lose in regulation, but so do the Caps and Devils, they’re in.

    The second season is looking good.

    • I’m not watching them for any of those reasons, instead I want to learn how to beat them. TB plays the same game every single shift, they are so well coached it’s disturbing. (Jack Admas winner for sure) This is one last game to make sure we know who to beat them in the playoffs.

      Really really exciting stuff, Vanek set this team right, and I’m hoping for at min conference finals that’s how good they are playing.

      Shane Oliver
      Twitter @Sholi2000
      Custom Sports Figures
      Congrats Carey Price and PK Subban, Montreal’s Gold Medal Members!

      • JF says:

        I agree with you about why this game is important. We haven’t made much of an impression on the Lightning so far this season, scoring only four foals in three games and winning only one (in OT). The good news is that Bishop seems to be a little less lights-out since the Olympic break, often giving up three or four goals in a game instead of only one or two. We also have to figure out a way to contain Steven Stamkos.

        As for home ice, I think it’s just as often a disadvantage as an advantage in the playoffs. If you look at our playoff performances in the last few years, we have more wins on the road than at home.

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      No importance.. They are just enjoying the Florida sun! Staying in Fla until Thursdays!

      ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  52. BriPro says:

    According to Stubbs, Emelin will re-join the team in time to play tomorrow night.

  53. Hobie Hansen says:

    No suspension on Orpik. Looks like you are still allowed to throw a hard and clean hit in the NHL. Good news!

    • Sportfan says:

      Bout time too

      Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!

    • Mattyleg says:

      Yep, doesn’t matter how late it is, either!
      Hard hitting after the player gets rid of the puck and is in a vulnerable position is alive and well!

      Good news for the US health system!

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        If you call that late I’d hate to see what you call on time? Toews was hit less than a half of a half second after the puck left his stick.

      • jimmy shaker says:

        If it was late why didn’t the stripes call an interference penalty? If, and I stress if, there was any call to be made on the play, the zebra’s maybe, maybe, maybe could’ve called charging. But even that would be a stretch!

        Shaker out!

        • Mattyleg says:

          There is no penalty due to the way that the rules are regularly misapplied.

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • jimmy shaker says:

            Sorry, I think your on the wrong side of this debate. I haven’t heard from any of the pundits around the NHL about the hit being a suspend able one or a penalty for that matter.

            Agree to disagree I guess.

            Shaker out!

          • Mattyleg says:

            Jimmy, I didn’t say anywhere that I think that this hit is suspendable or whatever.

            What I have been saying is that the NHL has to fix its rules, and the application of the rules that are already in place, so that body-checking is incidental to play for the puck, and not a goal in itself, and usually the result of charging (covering distance to deliver a hit).

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • punkster says:

            There is no “wrong” side of this debate.

            It boils down to opinions … if the league will not apply the rules it creates or continues to apply them in a haphazard fashion, whether by on ice officials or head office disciplinarians, we are left with nothing but opinions.

            Release the Subbang!!!

          • Caesar says:

            hitting to remove someone from the puck is a hockey play.Hitting to remove someone from the game because you are allowed a “freebie” is just dumb. The NHL has to get rid of that if they expect to have star players stay healthy and attract fans and revenue.

          • Mattyleg says:

            And once they no longer have the puck, there is no reason to hit them.
            If they are coming in so fast that they can’t stop, then it’s charging.
            Seems pretty simple to me.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • boing007 says:

            ‘Covering distance to deliver a hit’. Reminds me of Chara’s dirty hit on Pacioretty.

            Richard R

  54. kalevine says:

    I can’t help feeling happy that JVR is getting a taste of Leafdom and comeuppance after his contrived and rehearsed tug on that fallen logo a few months ago.

  55. Le Jadester says:

    Well, I guess Prustie’s Shoulder surgery went well and he should be ready to rock when the playoffs come ’round !!!

    He’s gonna be very valuble for us if we hope to go at least 2 to 3 rounds.

    Habs, OLE !

  56. Habs_101 says:

    Haven’t heard much speculation but I find it very odd that we haven’t signed Brady Vail yet.

    He has been a solid prospect and with his season ending over the weekend, likely could be used in Hamilton for the remainder to get an early look?!

    Just seems odd that we have heard so little about a guy with fairly impressive numbers;

    6’1″ 195lbs Center 32G 51A for 83pts in 67 games on a mediocre team.


    • CJ says:

      I am almost sure it gets done. There was no talk about Bennett, but he was signed shortly after his season was over.

      Keep in mind, they (the management team) may already know exactly what they have with Vail and might keep a roster spot open for someone else (Sorkin is an example). There is no need to rush Vail if you are confident that he is going to be a part of the organization going forward. Maybe they are eyeing one or two prospects from the CHL who’s season ended following playoff loses.

      Food for thought.

    • fundy45 says:

      I beleive Vail was playing with a bad shoulder the last while so he’s off skates till training camp to let his shoulder heal.

      • Habs_101 says:

        I wasn’t aware that he was injured, thanks. In that case he wont be playing in the AHL this season, thats too bad.

        It does not however affect the fact that he IS NOT under contract. According to cap geek we still have not offered Brady Vail a contract, if we want to retain his rights, he will need to be signed. I haven’t heard of any reasons why we wouldn’t be signing this prospect!? Not sure if anyone in or around Windsor knows anymore?

        GO HABS GO!

  57. Ozmodiar says:


    I’d like to see Eller, White and Bourni all rotate one spot counter-clockwise as they appear in the line-up above. (with only these 3 moving)

  58. Plekasuares says:

    Lots of babies bein born I guess

    • Mattyleg says:

      Well, do the math, and it’s in late May/early June that those babies were conceived.

      Habs played their last playoff game last season on May 7, 2013.

      Factor in a couple of weeks of getting over the disappointment and the injuries… then it’s baby-makin’ time!

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

  59. Ozmodiar says:

    Pleks returns to Montreal for the birth of his child. Baby is the spitting image of Emelin …

  60. BriPro says:

    This is a little off-topic, but still involves sports in Montreal.

    I have to say, since the demise of the Expos, I haven’t really followed baseball at all.
    Oh sure, being Canadian, I look at the occasional update on the Blue Jays, and was mildly interested last year, when they made all of those transactions to make themselves a true contender.

    But because they’re from Toronto, and every Canadian outside of Toronto loathes all-that-is-Toronto, for whatever reason….

    …. this changed for me this past weekend. The Blue Jays came through with something totally unexpected, and worthy of most baseball fans becoming Jays fans, at least until the Expos return.

    This was a great gesture of importance by the Toronto Blue Jays that impacts Montreal far more than a couple of exhibition games, and I congratulate the organization!

    Go Blue Jays!

  61. arcosenate says:

    I stayed home for family reasons today too, trying several times to make one.

    Now that’s humour.

  62. Stanley Cup or Bust ! says:

    If Emelin’s wife is indeed having a baby, it would seem that the impending birth of a child is good for a hockey players play on the ice.
    Both Plex and Yemmy have played well lately. Probably not thinking about Hockey too much and therefore let instinct take over.

    • bwoar says:

      On the other hand, a brand new baby in the home is usually a big energy drain. Less sleep.

      In fact, if they ever make the definitive movie about having kids, it ought to be called “Less Sleep”.

      The sequel (baby #2, natch) : “Even Less Sleep”

      #3: “Zombie Caffeine Man Wipes Butts (And Takes Names)”

      PREFACE: *I’m saying this as a dad, not a fan*
      Hockey players ought to plan their births for the offseason. Even if you have lots of help at home (i.e. a really understanding wife/partner/etc) you still want to spend that time – and might sacrifice sleep, training, whatever. The lead-up to a playoff run isn’t great timing!

      • Stanley Cup or Bust ! says:

        Except they can afford nannies.

      • Chris says:

        Ryan Getzlaf had a disastrous season following the birth of his first child, and he cited struggling with juggling his professional and home lives. Being out on the road while your wife is home caring for a new-born can be a huge distraction, as players understandably have their heads in a different place.

        As for trying to plan the birth of your kids, it isn’t always that easy. I have family members and friends that tried unsuccessfully for months. Sometimes, given how everything has to line up pretty well time wise (the eggs are only fertile for 4-12 hours after ovulation), I am amazed at how many accidental pregnancies there actually are.

  63. billylove says:

    ESPN ranks Habs at #6 ahead of Sharks, Pens, and Blackhawks.

  64. Luke says:

    Real_ESPNLeBrun: RT @Avalanche: INJURY UPDATE: Matt Duchene (knee) will be out roughly four weeks.

  65. BriPro says:

    I almost feel bad for the Leafs…. almost.


    • Stanley Cup or Bust ! says:

      Leaves falling now happens in 2 seasons.

    • bel33 says:

      Well as usually happens… (and I love watching it from T.O.)… too many “Leaf” fans jump back on the Cup wagon… the wagon stresses from the unplanned weight… and blows a tire, right around the team does the same thing.

      It’s nice and quiet at my Men’s league games these days… none of my Leaf fan buddies say much about their team. ha-ha.

      – I’d buy that for a dollar! –

  66. HabinBurlington says:

    Okay, it’s Baseballs opening day around the States today. Stumbled across two of the best reads you can have if you are interested in baseball and specifically Ted Williams.

    First is an article talking about the making of a famous article for Esquire:
    “What do you think of Ted Williams Now?”

    And the actual article from Esquire is here below:

    Many hated Teddy Williams, I wished I had seen him play, I loved this guy maybe his warts even more so.

  67. Maritime Ronn says:

    The most hilarious almost stage fight ever in hockey.
    It involved…Hugs and Beer.
    Front will love this one….


    The Federal Hockey League’s Matt Puntureri of the Danville Dashers and Jesse Felton of the Dayton Demonz skated away from a faceoff to center ice, where the spotlight would fall on their fight.

    They skated around. They removed equipment. But at the moment when fists would typically start flying, the complete opposite happened:

    Puntureri hugged Felton.

    Then he removed a can of beer from his pants, had a sip and flashed a peace sign at the benches.

  68. The Jackal says:

    Hope it’s nothing bad for the Emelins!

    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  69. BriPro says:

    Enough with the new kids already!

  70. Steven Snell says:

    Geeze. Tough week for the Habs and their families.

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