Habs get day off Sunday after ‘best game’ of the season

The Canadiens were given the day off Sunday after a thrilling 2-1 overtime victory over the Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks Saturday night at the Bell Centre.

“That was our best game — so far,” defenceman Andrei Markov, who scored both goals for the Canadiens, told reporters after the game, suggesting that this team can be even better.

“That’s our game,” he added. “If you play like that every time, success is going to be on your side.”

Coach Michel Therrien was thrilled with his team’s performance after a disappointing loss in Philadelphia in the previous game.

“There was nothing we could do about the last game except to learn from it,” said Therrien, who was criticized by many for benching P.K. Subban during the 3-1 loss to the Flyers. “Alexei Emelin was good, Marky was fantastic but, to be honest, everyone played a good game. Everyone. That’s why I’m so proud of my team.”

The Canadiens will practise at 11 a.m. Monday in Brossard as they prepare to face the New Jersey Devils Tuesday night at the Bell Centre (7:30 p.m., TSN-HABS, RDS, TSN Radio 690).

After the game against the Devils, the Canadiens will play their next four games on the road, visiting the Ottawa Senators on Thursday, the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday, the Pittsburgh Penguins next Wednesday and the Detroit Red Wings next Friday.

(Photo by Allen McInnis/The Gazette)

Playoff feel at Bell Centre as Habs beat Blackhawks, by The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs

‘Just close your eyes and shoot,’ Markov says, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

Hysteria is the norm for Habs fans, by Jack Todd

Habs winning big, Canadiens.com

Habs vs. Blackhawks photo gallery, montrealgazette.com

Devils’ Brodeur mulling his future, NHL.com



  1. DipsyDoodler says:

    I see a few of the hysterics, including the hysteric-in-chief, criticizing Max lately.

    Max is a sniper. His job is to get into open space, wait for a pass, and snap it towards net. He even did this a couple of times against the Hawks although no shot made it to the keeper.

    His job isn’t to get into scrums after the whistle, intimidate physically, or hit people.

    He’s scoring at a 0.5 gpg rate, top ten in the league.

    Yesterday someone praised the Ducks’ top line. Then, Timo, for whom every innocuous statement is an opening, sarcastically replied that they weren’t as good DD/Max/Gally. Other than a confirmation of the old adage that sarcasm is the lowest form of wit, what does this tell us?

    An interesting stat: the total salary of the DD line is $8.65M this year. That’s exactly Corey Perry’s cap hit. So yeah, the Ducks top line is better than DD’s. They also cost over twice as much. Next year Perry and Getzlaf are getting $9M apiece.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Thank you! Max’s strength is scoring goals. He does that well enough.

    • JUST ME says:

      If the rest of the team was playing with Max consistency then we would not lose any more game this season.

      Please do not take Timo as any kind of reference. I just do not understand how some may cite what he writes as of any value cause anyway it`s always negative so if some can be called naive from always seeing everything fine and dandy how can we call him ?

    • Steeltown Hab says:

      It’s called being a hockey player. No ones job is to be 1-dimensional. When Gallagher is taking shots to the face after the whistle in front of the net, I expect every teammate around to stand up for eachother. When Pacioretty sits there and watches after every whistle, ya I do have a problem with that.

      No one’s asking him to be a fighter. But should we expect him to worker harder on the forecheck, finish a few more checks? Ya that should be expected like it is out of every player.


      Lars, PK, Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Emelin, Bournival, De La Rose – @J_Perez22

  2. JUST ME says:

    Thanks to some of you guys we get to hear on how the Bulldogs are doing and where players are in their development. I find it interresting to notice that Hamilton at the middle mark of the season is 19 – 15 – 4. Not that gresat of a record you would say but still if they keep it up in the second half of the season this would end up as their best record since 2010. So if the farm system is getting results and progress this is a very important sign that the plan is evolving as predicted or as hoped…

    The farm system is the key part of the puzzle and if it gets to produce new players for the Habs then you really get new blood and can maximize your investments made through the draft. But at that level also, time is needed to be able to add new players either through the next draft or with other players that are actually in their junior team or their country.

  3. Sportfan says:

    Its funny how we see some coaches lose their jobs, because they lost the room. I wonder if that would ever happen to someone like Bowman, Burns, Toe Blake etc.

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  4. Hobie Hansen says:

    I’m thinking that game on Saturday could spell the end for Frankie Bouillon for a while? Last Saturday against Ottawa, Douglas Murray had a heck of a game and has played well ever since. He had another good game Saturday against the Hawks as well.

    Not to single out Raph Diaz again but he leaves me no choice. Murray will make some mistakes but recently it’s been Diaz fumbling with and turning over the puck in the Montreal end. He’s been playing hot potato.

    For now, leave the defence the way it is but I’d be more than happy to call up Greg Pateryn and put him with Murray or even making a trade for another defenseman.

    • Phil C says:

      The trade market is completely dead this year. There are many teams more desperate than Montreal for a trade who can’t get a deal done. Must be so many teams with cap issues.

      Diaz has been a bit of a disappointment offensively so far. They also definitely need him to hit a little more. I know he is small and relies on positioning and quickness to defend, but he takes it too far, he passes up too many opportunities to take a player out of the play.

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        As we saw, Markov and Subban play 80% of the pp or sometimes the entire two minutes. Emelin is warming up and I think we can live with throwing him and Gorges out there for 20 seconds every here or there.

        Another thing I saw Saturday is guys like Gorges and Murray were getting the puck on their stick in the Montreal end and just pounding it off the glass and out. Beautiful.

        This first pass people claim Diaz has is non existent. If there is any sort of pressure he panics and turns the puck over. If the other team is on a line change then we see his pretty little pass but that’s about it.

        • Phil C says:

          When he played with Gorges, they were really effective breaking down the forecheck with puck movement, but when he plays with Murray, he misses that puck support from his D-man, and his play suffers somewhat.

          I was expecting him to jump into the play offensively more often this year, but it hasn’t happened. I don’t know if he has been muzzled, or if it’s a confidence issue or what. I think he has more to give offensively, so it’s too bad.

        • rhino514 says:

          Diaz is the only other right handed Dman besides Subban, so unless he goes in a trade, he´s staying in the lineup as the fifth man. They will upgrade on the 6th spot, if they are able to.

      • 24 Cups says:

        Diaz is decent enough but assuming the Habs re-sign Markov, it would be a big mistake to give Diaz an UFA contract. You can’t pay a 3rd pairing Dman good coin.

        • Phil C says:

          They may not be able to fit him in, depending what he asks for. Yes, with Subban and Markov on the roster, he might not even be a good fit anymore. I would rather have a D-man more suited to play with Markov in the top four. Easier said than done though.

    • Cal says:

      I agree that The Crank has upped his game, even pinching at the right time.
      I want to see Pateryn be given a shot before a trade.

    • rhino514 says:

      Murray did well, but only played 13 minutes and change.
      I think Bouillon is better, but Bouillon at this point plays much better when he is rested.
      I too would like to see them trade for a good right handed defenceman so that neither one has to play except as injury replacements.
      The good news is the team has tons of cap space which means they should be able to do something interesting before the trade deadline.

    • JUST ME says:

      I think that since Murray is back from injury the D-squad is stronger cause they can leave aside one of their guy. Bouillon was not brought in to play 82 games, nor was Murray and sometimes Diaz also needs the rest so if we need and want to sit one of the guys then so be it depending on who is the opponent.

  5. Habsrule1 says:

    I’m curious about something.

    We all talk a lot about how small the Habs are and how the grind of an 82 game season affects them come playoff time. I got to thinking and these guys have everything at their disposal to make sure they are 100% ready to go for every game. They are all in great shape and I find it hard to believe that they can’t play as many games as bigger guys. The only way I really buy into this is if we are thinking that all or most of our smaller guys will actually have injuries come playoff time. If it’s just bumps & bruises, with the massages, saunas, jacuzzis, etc, etc, that the players have at their fingertips those things cannot linger, can they?

    Go Habs Go!!

    “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

    • Phil C says:

      I’m not sure there is any truth to it at all. The Habs’ smaller players were not the one’s who were injured last year, except for Gionta, and his injury had nothing to do with being small. I think this is a perceived problem rather than a real problem for those who want the Habs to be bigger. Along with Gionta, the key injuries in last year’s playoffs were to Emelin, Eller, and Prust who are all above average in size.

      In fact, small players have had to learn how to protect themselves on the ice throughout their career, so you could argue that the small guys are less injury prone. That’s how a guy like Ray Whitney (5′ 10″, 180lbs) can play into his forties.

      • Strummer says:

        The problem with smaller players doesn’t appear to be injuries as you suggest.
        However smaller players are easier to defend against, constantly lose puck battles thereby keeping the puck in the defensive end longer than neccessary and minimize possesion and scoring chances in the offensive zone.
        It becomes more evident in the post-season where the competetion is stiffer.

        Remember the quote form Bergevin early in 24CH “We need to get bigger and tougher to play against” (I’m paraphrasing) he said to his player development staff

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

        • Phil C says:

          I agree with you that when defending in their own end, especially against a big group of forwards, being small can result in bad match ups. This may be why the Habs get pinned in their end at times.

          But when they have the puck on their stick, I don’t think small players are that easy to defend against. A small player with the puck on his stick can be terrifying to a big defensemen because they are so quick, they can really make you look bad. If they are moving the puck well, size doesn’t really come into play at all.

      • rhino514 says:

        And Pacioretty was playing with a dislocated shoulder I believe.
        I agree it is a perceived more than a real problem. If anything, physical players get hurt more often.
        I find it strange that Chris Nilan, a former player, firmly believes this is a problem.
        Mark my words, if the habs are healthy, and Therrien doesn´t have them playing an uber-defensive game, the habs will at least one playoff round and should win two with just a little luck.

        • Phil C says:

          I forgot about Pacioretty. In hindsight, not too surprising they lost with all those injuries. Unfortunate timing.

        • Habsrule1 says:

          Thanks for the insight guys. I was kind of on the fence about the whole thing. I agree that having a couple more “big” players would help, but I have a hard time using that as an excuse. These guys should come into the playoffs ready to go and in shape, unless they actually have injuries.

          Perhaps the part that may be true is that in those 7 game series themselves, they may have a better chance of sustaining the injuries.

          After Saturday’s game, I’d be very curious to see how the Habs would fare in a 7-game series against Chicago. Many experts and fans would likely feel they would be run out of the series in 5 games or less.

          Go Habs Go!!

          “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

    • Habs1962 says:

      Alot of the too small talk comes from the competitor fans (leafs, sens, bruins fans)..and some media that find an easy topic.
      We were small a team in 2010? going to the East finals.
      Our game fizzled the last month of last season and playoffs due to injuries and it seemed lack of goal scoring was big in the Ottawa series and their goalie got hot.
      But yes.. we will see the top 6 Forwards bigger over next couple of years.

  6. Maritime Ronn says:

    Some words of wisdom from Ken Holland.

    Marc Begevin: On the job for 1 shortened Strike Season and another little more than 1/2 of another season.

    Ken Holland: GM of Detroit since 1997 (now 17 years).
    4 Stanley Cups – 3 as General Manager (1998-2002-2008) and 1 lost Stanley Cup Final.
    His teams have never missed the playoffs and only last year, lost a Game 7 Overtime to the eventual Cup Champ Blackhawks.

    What Holland believes about Patience and judging the job of a GM.

    An NHL general manager needs at least 5 full seasons to show if his program works, more if he inherits a bad situation. (Hello Marc Bergevin)

    Actually, Red Wings GM Ken Holland, believes it should be 10 years before a GM should be judged.

    His argument is that’s how long it takes to change the culture of an organization after you take over.
    General managers cannot simply show up, declare the present players all awful, discard them all and bring in new players.

    The other problem for a new GM, Holland points out, is that the first player you draft with that supposed high pick from taking over a failed team will not be ready to make a meaningful contribution to your team for 4 years.
    And the smart picks you make in the 2nd and 3rd rounds of the entry draft will take even longer.

    So after 4 years, a GM will be 4/5 of the way through a 5 year mandate before the results are evident from his best draft pick. That’s thin evidence with which to judge a GM’s effectiveness.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Morning Ronn. All good points as usual. I’m wholeheartedly willing to accept after a Habs victory but after a loss…. … 🙂

      CHeers bud

    • John Q Public says:

      Time waits for know one.

    • mdp2011 says:

      So Holland is saying that a GM can’t come in and magically build a Stanley Cup champion overnight? But but, what about all the arm chair GMs on this site who are capable of building a dynasty overnight? I am sure Holland has never meet any of the posters here, that’s for sure!

    • Cal says:

      Hey Ronn,
      “An NHL general manager needs at least 5 full seasons to show if his program works, more if he inherits a bad situation. ”
      MB did not walk into a bad situation.
      With parts like Price, Subban, Gally, Patches, Pleks, Markov, Emelin, Eller, and a few others already in the fold and good D prospects in Hamilton, MB did not walk into a “cupboard is bare” scenario. 5 years is a long time in this case. Habs should be a lot better by next year.

      • Maritime Ronn says:


        Perhaps some other factors to consider

        *Culture-Hockey Depatment-Coaching.
        Gally wasn’t there-he was a pick, Eller was a ?, Price had shown little when it counts, Markov was injured, PK had not won a Norris, and the farm system was average to weak at best.

        • Cal says:

          All true, but a lot changes in a little over 1 year. This “waiting to judge the GM” is a lot self-serving by Holland. Habs will not be contenders until the depth issue is solved, and that shouldn’t take another three years.

    • Sportfan says:

      I agree its way to early to judge MB he’s barely had one full season under his belt. He’s made some decent moves, some you wonder why on earth you would do that, but not every move turns into gold! I think he’s done a decent job so far and the team he has to deal with is in a much better situation than I dunno the Oilers, Flames etc.

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  7. 24 Cups says:

    Great article by Jack Todd this morning (although he was a bit over the top dealing with Yzerman).

    • Cal says:

      Hey Steve. I haven’t been able to read Todd for a long time now. He basically turns my stomach. Must be the “burbles and dweebs” routine and his hokey “heroes and zeros”.

      • 24 Cups says:

        Cal – I find it interesting how certain ideas or concepts take on a life of their own here on the internet. Presently one of those examples would be that Boucher would be a cure for all that ails the Habs. In the same vein is the notion that everything Jack Todd writes is lousy. Of course, that simply is not true. Today’s article being a prime example of that.

        As for the heroes and zeros, I think the idea has some merit but the daily recaps needs to be revamped. Say three for each category with no constant carry over from column to column.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Morning Steve. Some of my friends have a dislike for Todd ( See Cal below) but I’ve always enjoyed reading his work. I hate to say thus but I like his zeroes and hetos as well. I find it amusing.

      Back to the article I think his take on us whacky fans (myself included) is a much more accurate reflection then another writers from a few days ago.

      I’ll just add one thing. Being in the States we are starved for all news related to the Habs. The Gazette is a haven for us. Love them or hate them, heroes or zeros, they are a wonderful source for news pertaining to the greatest hockey team in the world. I couldn’t imagine life without them. 🙂


    • HabinBurlington says:

      I just don’t get his approach on Yzerman. The fans part, yah we are indeed that whacky. But he is far from a beat reporter on hockey, and knows even less about what went into choosing team Canada. Given where the Lightning are in the standings with their best player injured, given Yzerman did pick a gold medal winning team last Olympics, not sure where he gets off calling him a loser or zero, which I suspect he equates to the same thing, especially considering he puts him in the same company as people like Jeffrey Loria.

      • Phil C says:

        It’s not only Todd thinking that way, I’ve seen others criticize him harshly. They see it as a failing in character to not be loyal to his guy. I see it as a sign of great character to put Team Canada ahead of his personal needs. A matter of perspective I guess.

        • 24 Cups says:

          Canada’s choice of a 13th and 14th forward was probably the most difficult of any selection process that took place for men’s Olympic hockey. That notion includes all 12 teams that are in the competition.

          I seriously doubt that Canada will win or lose a medal based the 14th guy who is basically a sub throughout the entire tournament.

          Lastly, if for some reason a RW gets hurt, there is no guarantee that St Louis would be the automatic replacement. It just as easily could be Claude Giroux.

      • Just a Habs Fan says:

        You probably ought to read up on Tdd…he is a very knowledable man i n many things. He probably does have the contacts to give him the necessary information on how and what he writes about. Do you know him personally to judge him in the way you do as not knowing this or that. You seem to have no problems making off the cuff comments as though you are a great hockey mind……I’d reflect opn things a bit if I were you before judging a man you probably don’t know much about. Steve Yzerman probably doesn’t pick the players by himself and Canada didn’t win by an easy margin at all…I for one was very worried about the outcome of the game…….as uisual Sid got all the press but anyone watchiung the game with a broad view could see Iginla was the workhorse and cause of the winning goal. Hey hockey is ripe with politics…everyone is welcome to their own view but I beleive we owe it to the forum to at least give some thought to what we write on here. It ought to be responsible writing. So many good contributers have left this site because of the constant stream of silly comments.

  8. Habfan10912 says:

    Good morning friends. Not that it matters any but this day off I agree with. Earned big time. Still happy over that effort Saturday night. I think the old Emelin might be back. 😉
    CHeers all!

  9. Ian Cobb says:

    ENOUGH of we are a small team!
    Speed Kills everytime.!!
    If you play big with speed, it matters not what size you are. But it sure says a lot about the size of your heart!

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Morning Ian. I think speed is essential as well but can’t we have both? I think we need balance and one more big forward might just do the trick. CHeers.

    • Just a Habs Fan says:

      Ian you know that hockey teams play a system. If the other team can somehow neutralize the system they often will win the game if not the series. Think back to Ottawa series. Other than Price not playing well the team was checked into the ice and physically beat up in that series. So I loved the game on Saturday with the Hawks but it was a match of two teams skilled yes but the Hawks are in a sort of a funk right now…do you really believe the Habs could win a series against them ? They do have too many smallish players to go deep. If Price stands on his head they may win a series against a speed oriented tram but a bruising team will likely eliminate them shortly.

  10. CharlieHodgeFan says:

    My 80 year old Uncle watched a New Jersey game a few years ago, when they were a power, and announced that if the talent pool was so thin that top teams had to play like that, he would watch no more NHL. He’s stuck to that – an uncommonly diehard protest.
    He asked me about the Chicago game, as he’d heard it was a rare outbreak of ‘real hockey’. I agreed.
    He has a theory on why the Habs are so streaky. He says the ghosts of the old Forum are busy sitting in on classes in Dawson’s rented classrooms there, and watching movies. The ghosts of the Bell Center aren’t even hockey players, but are phantoms in expensive suits who are concerned with making sure the hot dog sellers don’t take long breaks.
    Hmmm. It’s all in the ghosts.

    • Cal says:

      Many older fans (in their 60s and 70s) get turned off by the feeling that “the fix” is in or that the quality of hockey is crap. I think it’s the latter.
      He’s right on about those ghosts, though. Didn’t Habs management realize that those flaming torches scare the ghosts away?

      • Strummer says:

        I wouldn’t say its crap but it has changed, not necessaeily for the better.
        Things like “finishing your check” ( used to be called boarding) hard shell shoulder and elbow pads, 40- second shifts, cycling the puck, composite sticks and oversize goalie gear make it a different game.

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

  11. Lafleurguy says:

    Mornin’ Maritime JFF, Maritime Call, Maritime Walmyrr.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  12. Walmyr says:

    Hello everybody…

    Very happy for Parros…

    I don’t know if we can say that he had a great game playing less than 4 minutes. But he did what was supposed to do: help the fourth line; be a big body in both zones; help his teammates (no need to fight everytime to do that) whenever necessary.

    Hell, I happy just for have the opportunity to watch him playing again, having fun, celebrating a goal with his linemates…hope he is healthy enough to play this game and have fun…


  13. JF says:

    A couple of weeks ago, posters were discussing Therrien’s telling his team in 24CH that they were a grinding team. The revelation of Saturday night’s game makes this remark more mystifying than ever. Did Therrien know what he was saying? Was something lost or added in translation? The Habs are not built to be grinders, and when they try, they usually fail miserably and produce boring, frustrating hockey.

    Markov said after the victory that that was their game, and he’s right. When the Habs make full use of their speed and play as a team, when their defence moves the puck rapidly and efficiently and doesn’t hesitate to jump into the rush, when the forwards go to the net, they can compete with any team in the League. When they resort to dumping and chasing, they will nearly always be over-matched by bigger teams who have the size and muscle to dig the puck out of the boards. Yet they very often revert to the dump-and-chase model, and Saturday’s victory leaves me more at a loss than ever to understand why.

    • Cal says:

      If the Habs want to make noise in the playoffs, they will have to adopt that style. The only way to avoid this is to not have to play Boston, Tampa or Philly, but have match ups against Pitts, Wash, Rangers and Detroit.
      Beating any team over a 7 game series will take a combination of speed and skill coupled with grit and grind. The reason for this is because the referee’s handbook for penalties in the playoffs consists of a hastily written scribble on a post-it note.

      • JF says:

        That’s probably true for this year, but only because we’re still on the small side. But I hope we’re in the process of becoming a team more like the Chicago Blackhawks than one of the big, grinding teams. The Hawks beat the Kings and Bruins last year playing a fast-skating, puck-possession game. That’s the kind of game we played on Saturday night and the kind of game we can win. We need to be able to grind when necessary, we need more muscle and grit, but I hope the blueprint Bergevin has in mind is not that of a team of grinders.

        • Cal says:

          MB will be using the Blackhawks model, and it will take some time because the Habs aren’t finishing low in the standings.
          I’ve always felt that your top 2 scoring lines would be speed demons and the 3rd and 4th lines would be grinding types. Thus far, the Habs have only one grinding line with Moen, Prust and Parros (due to White’s injury).

    • rhino514 says:

      They will run into just as much trouble trying to play a type of game they aren´t built as trying to play offensively creative hockey, and maybe more. But the hockey will be MUCH more boring.
      I would rather they play to their strengths, and if they lose, they lose playing exciting hockey.
      I think Washington is a good example. When Dale hunter came in he tried to completely change the mentality on that team. The result? A second round loss. The Caps, since having lost to the Canadiens in the playoffs, have not been any more successful trying to play boring, trap hockey than they were before.
      Surely Therrien will see that the team can play against anyone of playing to their strengths, after saturday´s game.
      And p.s., the habs always play the Bruins well; the only team I would be worried about in the playoffs would be the Flyers, and the chances of playing them in the first round, or meeting them in the second, are fairly slim.

  14. The Jackal says:


    Agree with you on Burke.
    He was easy to hate as Leaf GM but he is a solid hockey mind and he is not afraid to make big moves. As much as we hate on the Leafs that was Burke’s team that broke their playoff drought and almost beat the runner ups.

    He also does good things with the communities he is involved in and has helped raise awareness for homosexual athletes and has worked with the NHL on the matter too.

    • CH Marshall says:

      it’s a strange mix of his talent and human frailties… But obviously one outweighs the other enough to keep him employed

    • formerly known as the hc says:

      The leafs were a lot better after he left than when he started. Hopefully they don’t find a way to push the team over the next level.

    • JUST ME says:

      I fail to see what can be granted as solid moves for Burke as his team can only guarantee a place within the bottom dwellers of the league. Results are just not there. Not only are they mediocre but in a league that allows most of the teams to get in the playoffs this team does not make it year in year out. I grant you that the new management is not doing better but there must be someting in the water in Toronto for people to be satisfied with nothing.
      And now they are stuck with costly deasl given to UFA`S and orange cones that will hurt them for years to come. Soon to celebrate 50 years of this !

      • Dust says:

        Not sure what leaf fans you know in Toronto. But the ones I know aren’t satisfied at all. They were extremely happy last year when they made the playoffs. And can you blame them after the playoff drought they had.
        To say they are satisfied by with where they are now is uninformed. If anything they are upset and frustrated that their team is doing the same thing it did 2 years ago

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      After 5 years they finally made the playoffs and lost in round one. Now they’re back to their usual 9-12th position and with no real prospects in sight. How this can be considered any sort of achievement is puzzling.

      Sure the new guy has made blunder after blunder.

  15. The Jackal says:

    Wow, Todd nailed it right on the head with his article.

    It’s funny to imagine fans asking gor Bowman’s head and to trade Robinson. It must come with the territory. Thankfully we’re spared of that chatter for at least one more day. Anyhow, good night all, bask in the glory of our latest W and hopefully we can surpass our point total from last season after game 48

  16. naweed235 says:

    As much as I hate to say it but the Van RymsDyke for Schenn trade is looking mighty good for TO. Almost as good as Neal for Goligoski.

    • HabFan in Edmonton says:

      Burke did make some good trades, trading Beauchemin for Lupul and Gardiner was also a good trade.

      • The_Truth says:

        The thing I like about Burke is he isn’t afraid to make the big deal. He knows what his team needs and is going to do everything he can to get it. He may be a little impatient at times, but is a fun GM to follow.

    • SlovakHab says:

      It was a steal.
      Personally I’d rather have Goligoski than Schenn, so I think it was better than Neil deal in my books.

      Btw his name is spelled Van Riemsdyk.

    • Steven says:

      Neal and Niskanen for Goligoski*

      God, that has to be one of the worst trades in recent memory, right there.

      • Marc10 says:

        I still don’t get that deal to the point where I have to believe Neal wasn’t offered around the League. It makes no sense.

        That’s two deals in a short span of time where the Penguins make out like bandits. Jordan Stall is the other. He was obviously going to go to Carolina as a UFA to play with his brother. Somehow Carolina consented to a trade when they could have sat pretty and waited. Ridiculous.

        • Steven says:

          Carolina probably wanted to be sure they’d get him, even though it was written on the wall.

          I suspect that the Stars wanted Goligoski really badly, and made that trade to get him. That doesn’t make any more sense to me, though, since Neal alone for Goligoski makes that trade one-sided. Throwing in Niskanen, too, is just mind shattering.

      • The_Truth says:

        That Chris Kunitz for Ryan Whitney trade was another steal. Shero has got to be the best GM in the league.

        Surprised he never traded Maxime Talbot and MA Fleury for Price, Subban and Patches when Gauthier was GM.

        • Marc10 says:

          Yeah, looking at the top teams and their roster, most notably the Hawks and the Pens… They stank the joint out for a few years and landed some prime rib, but they added the gravy and veggies through savvy trades and smart drafts.

  17. montreal ace says:

    Here is an interesting stat, there is not 1 team in the Eastern Conference, that has not played 500 hockey in the last 10 games

    • CJ says:

      Parity league. Islanders have the best record over the previous 10 games (8-2).

    • dr. gesundheit says:

      Another interesting stat…as of tonight the “weak sister” east is 4 games above 500 vs the “far superior” west.

      • rnnoble says:

        That’s confounded by losses in OT/SO. Eastern teams have won 119 games against the West, Western teams have won 146 games against the East. I would say the “far superior” and “weak sister” monikers apply.

        • dr. gesundheit says:

          Flawed logic. You may want to reconsider the value of statistics based on OT/SO losses. The (vast) superiority you claim for the West is based on games that (in a real world) should be ties.

          The stats that I’m quoting are more meaninful by comparison and only take into account wins and losses over full 60 minute games until the end of regulation.

          I would not consider a definitive superiority in shoot-outs/5 minutes or less of 4 on 4 Overtime shinny as a sign of being “far superior”. (while being inferior based on record attained during 60 minutes of regular hockey)

    • Sportfan says:

      That’s very unique.

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

  18. doug19 says:

    Hope the habs prepare more for playoffs than first place. Also remember the draft.

  19. CH Marshall says:

    As per Friedeman’s twitter, Grigorenko has informed Sabres he’ll report to the remparts.. Curious as to what it’d take to trade for him.

  20. mrhabby says:

    Does parros play Saturday against the leafs.

  21. drail222 says:

    Great game from George last night. Returned against a tough team and didn’t look out of place. Caused the first goal with the nice screen in front and even almost sniped one brett hull/cammi style on one knee! lol Good on him.. GHG!!

  22. CJ says:

    Leafs eighth shoot out win of the win. Unbelievable!

  23. Psycho29 says:

    @ HiS:
    Yes the Gallagher burger really does exist at Quebec McDos….I saw the ad last night on RDS…


  24. JohnBellyful says:

    It happens often that I post and then exit the site before responses are made to my comments. Please don’t think my failing to reply is meant to be an act of rudeness. Sometimes there’s nothing left to be said, or if an hour or two has passed, the opportunity is no longer there for any meaningful exchange.
    However, things have been written in the past 24 hours directed my way that I feel cannot be ignored and must be answered.

    @gluesniffer – I have NEVER said your mother wears army boots (as far as I know they don’t come in her size).

    @statsboy – Thanks for the link. I see now that PIM doesn’t stand for Players in Motion, PP isn’t postprandial (so they’re not goals scored right after lunch, eh?), SH is ShortHanded, not StickHandling, and GW represents GameWinners (rather than GeeWhiz, which I thought was a neat stat to keep for spectacular goals).
    I DID know that OT is OverTime but TOI/G is Time On Ice per Game? Really? They get paid by the minute? I did not know that.

    @tradebait – This obsession with acquiring Phaneuf is disturbing.
    Especially as – if I understand your post correctly – it has nothing to do with hockey.
    And for the umpteenth time, a draft choice does not refer to a selection of ales and lagers when making a trade. Absolutely nothing. IMHO.

    @PMsteve– Look, it was a joke, okay?

    @mastermind – I stand corrected. Lithuania’s gross domestic product is projected to grow by 3.5 per cent this year, not 2.8 as I had insisted. In light of that, and the myriad related points you brought up yesterday, I must admit there is substance to your suggested line of Parros-Briere-Markov, however odd the tripling looks at first glance.
    I still have a problem with Eller-Plekanec-Desharnais. I believe they all shoot left.

    @TrollyYours – Your recommendation that Montreal renumber its lines to 5,6,7,8 looks pretty foolish now, doesn’t it?

  25. 416erHabsFan says:

    Not too much chat on the Gallager fight last night,looked like a draw to me but is there anything this kid can’t do?

  26. Timo says:

    I finally get my question answered.

  27. Habcouver says:

    Yakupov is currently -27. How much do the Oilers want to destroy this kid’s confidence?

    Waiting patiently for #25

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      The term ‘brains trust’ has been bandied about a lot recently, owing to the Olympic selections.

      However, it’s as well to recall that no every team is blessed with one.

  28. Plekasuares says:

    So TFC got Defoe. He’s still a great player. Is this the Lewicki effect?

  29. Bripro says:

    So the Pats are going for the AFC title, yet again.
    Wow, what a surprise!
    I wonder if they’ll succeed in penetrating the Broncos’ defence better than SD.
    Brady vs. Manning. The nice one.
    Should be a great game.

    • frontenac1 says:

      The tie breaker is 55pts. Should be a wild one. Early line has Broncos -6.5pts. In Mile High butTough call as they couldn’t cover today. I like the 49ers +3 next week in the other game.

  30. Plekasuares says:

    Don’t normally watch the NFL prefer the NCAA but should be a good skate of games next Sunday.

  31. CharlieHodgeFan says:

    The Todd column is kind of entertaining. I remember when many fans wanted to get rid of that kid Lafleur because he wasn’t going to be a scorer. No backbone, they said. There has always been a teeny tiny tavern talking timo streak around this team, and there always will be.

    • habs001 says:

      I heard that many times but not clear why?

      at age 20.. 29 goals at age 21… 28 goals and at age 22 … 21 goals and over 50 points every year…i guess Hab fans expectations were not reasonable in those days either…

      • Habcouver says:

        Compared closely to Dionne, too.

        Waiting patiently for #25

      • CharlieHodgeFan says:

        I was 13 when he came into the league, so while I heard it, I didn’t have a strong opinion either way.
        Partly, I think it was his haircut. The older guys didn’t approve. They thought he was soft.
        He was a flower too. Couldn’t fight.
        A lot of Montreal anglos noticed he was francophone, so that didn’t go over with them. The habs were always looking for French guys, you know.
        But if you look at his stats, the perception was weird. Or the fans were.

  32. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …is there really a Brendan Gallagher burger available at McDonald’s ?

    …only available in Quebec ?

    …if so they should try it here in BC …I’m not far from His parents’ home

    …would sell like hotcakes here I am sure ?

  33. Dunboyne Mike says:

    I am not being allowed to reply to — or now even to initiate posts to — a certain poster whose name rhymes with Pittsburgh’s goalie!

    We are approximately 6000 miles apart! What threat do we pose??!!

  34. habs001 says:

    Roy,Price in goal
    Robinson,Savard,Lapointe,Chelios,PK,Markov on D
    Gainey,Carbo, C Lemieux
    Naslund,Saku,Cournoyer (ultimate Smurf line)
    Muller,B Smith, Tremblay
    Not a bad lineup from the Habs past and present

  35. JohninTruro says:

    Wow Thrower with 2 goals and an assist 10 minutes into the game against the Winterhawks. This pulls him back over a ppg for the year. Solid, solid year for Thrower so far, a great bounce back.

    • Habitant in Surrey says:

      …Hay giving Him the ‘C’ has given Him a new outlook

      • JohninTruro says:

        Some guys handle the pressure and want it, and others are the opposite. Maybe he needed exactly that, a big vote of confidence as being “the guy”. Just a great year so far on a middle of the road team.

    • CJ says:

      Just a great bounce back year. I can’t wait to see him in Hamilton next year. Breisbois and Lapointe deserve a ton of credit – as do the players, for providing each of our prospects the support they need to succeed. This was non existent three years ago.

  36. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    Wish the Chargers played better but they went further than I ever expected. Keenan Allen is going to be phenomenal while T’eo is a waste of a “traded-up” pick. Next week’s match-ups are two of the best in a long time.

  37. Habcouver says:

    NJ first shot in 2nd period…. Goal!
    1-1 vs. Laffs

    Waiting patiently for #25

  38. frontenac1 says:

    Papa got some Sugar this weekend! Go Habs and thank you Chargers. Sorry Burly.

  39. Dunboyne Mike says:

    I’ve made 3 attempts to continue our conversation, but they just won’t appear….

  40. frontenac1 says:

    Yee Ha! Broncos don’t Cover! Easy Street Amigos!

  41. Dunboyne Mike says:


  42. Marc10 says:

    If that’s the kind of hockey Hawks fans get win or lose, that is something to aim for. What a crazy awesome game! Mind you they tanked badly to land Toews and Kane, but they’ve done a wonderful job of surrounding that talent with great draft picks (hello Edmonton!) I love their grinders and muckers. They lose a Bolland and they immediately replace them with a Shaw or Kruger. Impressive! Hopefully we get there one day.

    Our fourth line sure looked good. A goal with Parros on the ice against the reigning champs! That’s a gift from the Gods. The Prust of old coming out of his rut to creating chance upon chance and blocking shots. And what can you say about Pleky paired with Gio and Moen and tasked with neutralizing one of the best offensive lines in the galaxy? That was nuts! Pleks didn’t just do that, he out-chanced them and gave the Chicago D fits.

    I’m still in shock as to how we managed to pound a Western Team into the ice. I know Chicago isn’t St Louis or LA where that task would be virtually impossible, but that was extraordinary. The Habs plastered them all game led by the Russian Tank. Even the invisible man Rene Bourque came out of hiding and looked like a North-South hockey player.

    So thanks Chicago. If Les Boys take it to another level from hereon in, we should send a case of fine wine your way. That game was a revelation. The Habs are still a team with issues (a weak D, average muckers, small players with a lack of finishers…), but when they skate and hit and go to the net (nice work Danny B by the way), ie, when they play hockey like it should be played, they’re a handful for any team and tremendously entertaining to watch.

  43. CJ says:

    It was posted in the previous thread, but bears repeating, show me a great coach and I’ll show you a great goaltender. No truer words have been spoken.

    Case in point, look at Philly. After beating us they give up 6 to the lightning and lose, and again tonight give up 3 in the first period to the Rangers.

    Paul MacLean was coach of the year last year based on the play of Craig Anderson. Goaltending and special teams go further toward determining the outcome of a hockey game then any other facet of the game.

  44. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …Sven Andrighetto seems to be the one special offensive bright light in Hamilton

    …today’s 3-1 game vs the Iowa Wild, was against one of the AHL’s bottom-feeders

    …but, Our defensive prospects seem to be jelling very well

  45. HabFab says:

    Reway with a goal and an assist in his first game back from the WJC.

    • JohninTruro says:

      On 7 goals though, with the way he was playing I expected 4-5 points, but that’s just him making my expectations go through the roof. Good to finally see him back playing.

      • CJ says:

        Second star though and on the ice for PP goals. He may not have gotten the assists but based on twitter he and Poirer were standouts and controlled the play.

    • JohninTruro says:

      More importantly Frank is the goal and assist Beaulieu had today, and a fight. Gordie Howe trick as they say. He has come on the last few games. Really important those two step up and finish the season strong.

  46. HabinBurlington says:

    One more onside kick and Chargers may indeed complete the comeback!

  47. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Can anyone identify the reporter in the background of the Pleks clip?

  48. Buzz Lightbeer says:

    Oilers up by one on the Hawks already.
    Kinda takes the wind out of my sails.

    • CJ says:

      Oilers have managed 15 shots, while the Hawks have 34. The big difference is goaltending. The kid Chicago has in tonight let in 7 against the Leafs. 4-3 Hawks in the third. This game shouldn’t let the wind out of anyone’s sails. Chicago has one regulation loss on their last 10 games (4-1-5).

  49. HabinBurlington says:

    Wow, San Diego receiver gets a touchdown to get team within 2 more scores in a playoff game, and feels the need to have the crowd read the name on the back of his jersey.

    I am sure this Allen kid must be one hell of a team player. If I wasn’t cheering for Denver before, I am even moreso now.

    Clearly the crest on the front of his jersey means sweet richard all.

  50. ooder says:

    huh i just realized, russians didn’t take Volchenkov to the olympics. Pretty weird as this guy is a staple stay at home guy.
    Is it his play, injuries?

  51. CJ says:

    My cousin, now living in Winnipeg while attending University, served big Buff at Boston pizza this afternoon. Apparently he was a great guy. She got a picture, which she posted on her Facebook. Needless to say she is glowing!

    • Buzz Lightbeer says:

      I’d be curious as to how much he ate.
      I’m guessing somewhere between a mound and a pile.

      • CJ says:

        It was the first thing I was going to ask. I didn’t want to spoil her moment, so I just wished her well and mentioned how cool I thought it was. FYI, he looks just as big in person as he does with his equipment on. He must weigh 270 or more.

        • Habcouver says:

          Big Buff was much heavier last year, yes? I heard he had lost a lot of weight. Guessing he wasn’t just grazing on salad at BP.

          Waiting patiently for #25

          • CJ says:

            You are welcome to take a look at my Facebook account for the photo. I’m basing my comments entirely in what I see. I heard he was very heavy coming out of the lockout, but that’s based on hearsay. He is a big man, no two ways about it.

  52. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Ok, let’s accept the premise that Therrien’s tactics elevated the team to play an excellent game vs Chicago.

    Any theories on why those tactics were necessary? Why were they so bad vs Philly? (“Oh man, I don’t feel like playing hockey tonight.” “You said it, bud. I can’t wait for 3 hours from now. How about you?” “Yeah, same. And I am stuffed after that late dinner — shouldn’t have add that seventh portion of poutine. What time’s our flight?”)

    It’s a professional hockey team, right? How is it possible that an entire team suffers from some mysterious malaise and fails “to show up”?

  53. Danno says:

    A Night To Remember


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

  54. DipsyDoodler says:

    Chargers comeback?

  55. Reflektor says:

    Pretty sure it has been proven over many decades, defensemen have more learning and maturing to do and it is risky to give up and trade very good prospects (desperate trades like Chelios or McDonaugh not included). Beaulieu and Tinordi have some serious upsides Dmen skill but unless an Andrew Ladd is included, neither goes the other way.

  56. frontenac1 says:

    Jeeze, here we go again. Broncos 17 Chargers 0. Can’t even cover 9pts?! Sh#t on my soul again you bas#tards.

  57. JUST ME says:

    With this crazy schedule we can sometimes complain that there is not much time to practice but after yesterday`s game i think they `ve got it pretty much figured out…But the next opponent and the next game does not have the same promissing outlook…

  58. Habitant in Surrey says:


    …sorry Trin I didn’t respond to Your question earlier, I went away to catch-up on Stubbs’ and others’ columns

    …great, isn’t it, when there is euphoria after a win ? 🙂

    …I often come in late on conversations in HIO, so I am not sure what You are getting to about Therrien

    …is it re P.K. ? …and His relationship with Therrien ?

    • habstrinifan says:

      No it isn’t.

      You express great praise for Therrien. And although I am not sure, I am willing to accept that your ‘scenario’ may have been what was at work.

      Based on the general approval for this game and the style played by the HABS. And add to that Markov’s comment about “this is our game”.. a game which contrasts markedly with any prototype of a ‘grinding team’ as insisted on by Therrien in a 24ch episode.

      I was wondering if you saw any difference in approach between a star veteran and the coach.

      I think the ‘identity’ of the team is important for true progress and player decision. Note also my desire for the development of a true ‘grinder’ corps on the team. So I am not blind to the need for grinder hockey.. I just think the entire team ‘grinding’ is self-defeating.

    • Habitant in Surrey says:


      …’Our game’ re Markov’s quote, …or Team of ‘grinders’ as what Therrien alluded to ?

      …which is it ?

      …am I correct saying that it’s both ?

      …most of the teams We have difficulty with have ‘easy physicality’, simply because they don’t have to work as hard to be ‘physical’ because they are bigger

      …We have one of the higher ‘skill and speed’ levels in the NHL, but to match other teams size We must work harder (grind) than the other team

      …so, I think that’s what Therrien means when He is telling Our Players They must play a grinding game or no success

  59. habs001 says:

    As i recall the fourth line looked much better than i expected in the season opener before Parros was injured…used properly he can contribute….

  60. frontenac1 says:

    @Captain Pike. Sorry amigo, been busy today at the Saloon today but thanks for that clip on the Orion Girls. I know they have been to Earth because I saw that lass on the Right Wing at Wandas last year.
    She said she was going to McGill. Saludos and Keep the Peace.

  61. Habcouver says:

    I hope we start Budaj against NJ. He deserves a similar team effort to erase the Philly experience.

    Waiting patiently for #25

    • CJ says:

      Agreed. I hope the team can carry this consistency forward. This is a huge month. Tons of four point games, including the Sens, Leafs, Red Wings and Bruins all on the road. This month will go a very long way to determining our fate this season. If we play the same way we did last night we will win more then we lose, and burry those divisional opponents along the way. Go Habs!

  62. Reflektor says:

    I’ve seen many rip Jack Todd over time but he is pretty bang on this week. I may and many of you may not like some of Therrien’s tactics but when the team can pull off such a well-played win, well we all win with our Habs. ‘Demented’ is a strong word unless one describes Harper, the CBC, Toronto media types and of course the delusional Leaf fan. Put Jack in the Hero column this week.

  63. Ron says:

    Bulldogs win another one. 3/1

  64. habstrinifan says:

    Jack Todd is right in including Steve Yzerman on his Zero list and Martin St. Louis on his Hero list.

    I feel really conflicted disliking Steve Yzerman.. but I do right now.
    Maybe he took the Team Canada ‘perfect team’ concept too heavily on his shoulders… too many experts giving him advice on the right team makeup. Sometimes you go with the best period.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      So true, Trini.
      I had it way, way worse with Gainey, although ever reaching “dislike”. More, “Say it ain’t so, Bob.”

    • mrhabby says:

      Disgree…..more likely the management team said no even though he would have added marty. Yzerman was likely over ruled and had no choice.

    • Ktowner says:

      Sorry but I can’t agree here. Yzerman was and is a committed team player and the selection of Team Canada was a group effort. He recused himself when it became obvious that he was in a bit of conflict of interest with guys that not only are on his Lightening team but who are also his friends. As a former player his role as a manager is also as a mentor and he takes that role very seriously. It is an extremely difficult situation to be in but he agreed to do the job knowing full well that hard decisions needed to be made.
      We as rabid hockey fans can debate the selection of certain players or the omission of others but sitting in our living rooms with a cold one in our hands is easy, flying hundreds of thousands of kilometers and watching hundreds of games is something else entirely.
      It is time for everyone to get behind the team, players, coaches managers, behind the scenes people, everyone and show our support in the defense of our hard earned gold medal.
      Go Canada!

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        Well said, Kt, esp about us in our living rooms.
        However, surely part of the job description is to pick the best and most deserving players, conflict or no? He/they picked the injured Stamkos…

        Conflict or no, once you’re in that role, you have to be able to say, Yes, so-and-so is on my own team, but he deserves a place.

        That said, I am ignorant of the procedures and protocols.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Good post, Todd knows nothing about what or how the St. Louis decision came about. His part about calling Lebatard a hypocrite is interesting also. I had no issue with Lebatard doing what he did with his ballot. In fact the ballot which Deadspin produced was a very good ballot.

        Todd made some good points related to Habs fans no doubt, but his typical go with the trade winds as it relates to his heroes and zeroes get tiring.

  65. Habitant in Surrey says:


    …I think this is the link that Frank is referring to below

    …Jack Todd’s column on the insanity among Montreal Canadiens’ Fans

    …good one Frank 🙂

  66. Habcouver says:

    Just look at Parros’ expression and jubilation.
    Simply priceless (pls exclude puns that CP is in fact not in the picture).

    Waiting patiently for #25

  67. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …can You all imagine the psyche of Our Players following the game vs the Flyers ?

    …besides P.K.’s behind being nailed to the bench for most of the third, They recognized Their Coach essentially ‘giving-up’ the game …underlined by not pulling the goalie

    …as a Fan, I saw it in Therrien’s eyes and His actions …can You imagine how clearly the message was received by the Team ?

    …each individual Player, after time, understands and is tuned-in to every heart-beat of the Coach if They are half-way intelligent

    …many of Us was all over Therrien for not pulling-out all the normal stops to at least earn a point

    …good coaches not only look at the moment, but they too are looking forward

    …I am certain He recognized a malaise in the Team that required a significant adjustment and wake-up call

    …thinking if He went through the normal motions of the defeat in Philidelphia without going nuclear, a similar loss in Montreal to the Blackhawks will certainly follow

    …it’s called ‘coaching’

    …Michel Therrien was not My choice, but since both the Philadelphia game and the Blackhawks game, He has certainly raised His esteem in My eyes

    …have no idea of the future, but for today, Michel Therrien has My respect for some great coaching these past few days

    • habstrinifan says:

      No comment on Markov “our game” comment and how it differs from Therrien’s “grinders” comment.

      Before you answer, I need to point out that in all the euphoria, my first post today called for the development and deployment of a true ‘grinding’ line on the HABS.

  68. Mark C says:

    Gordie Howe hat trick for Nate Beaulieu. Seems to be really coming along, 2 goals and 6 points in his last 6 games and 2 periods.

    • Habcouver says:

      NB’s appearance is more nasty and intimidating as he matures, too.
      I hope he’s a beast when he’s with the Habs!

      Waiting patiently for #25

    • HabFab says:

      Couldn’t sulk all season. Not sure what got into him and Tinordi but it appears they are slowly working out of it.

    • JUST ME says:

      Beaulieu has always been a gem in offense, incredible speed surge,good control of the puck ,never gives it away. I can just imagine him and P.K. and Markov and Emelin…

      Problem is his defensive game . Needs a lot of work but hopefully that time in the AHL has been used properly.

  69. habitunts1 says:

    The most perfect game Ive watched in a long time. Everyone contributed. Blocked shots, Great Goaltending and the Skating was fast and furious along with the tape to tape passing. Getting to the playoffs and playing like that will get them far. Chicago definitely earned there 1 point though.


  70. GGtheHab says:

    Last night was fun to watch…even Borque played a strong game I thought..

  71. Buzz Lightbeer says:

    Markov says,”that’s our game”.
    Exactly. The habs have more success it seems if they keep it more uptempo as opposed to the lay back and let the other team give it to them. I’m sure the players enjoy that much more as well.
    JM is gone and they are not “grinders”.

  72. HabFab says:

    Nice article from Todd on Hab fans.

  73. Danno says:

    Wait a second…


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

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