Habs get day off Sunday to lick their wounds

The Canadiens were given the day off Sunday to lick their wounds following Saturday’s embarrassing 5-0 loss to the Washington Capitals at the Bell Centre.

It was the fourth straight loss for the Canadiens, who have only four wins in their last 13 games (4-7-2), and they have fallen to fourth place in the Atlantic Division, one point behind the Toronto Maple Leafs.

The Canadiens have now given up four or more goals in six straight games. The Canadiens pulled goaltender Carey Price just past the halfway point of the second period Saturday with the Capitals holding a 4-0 lead. It marked the second time in three games that Price has been pulled and the goaltender now ranks 13th in the NHL in save percentage (.918) and 19th in goals-against average (2.50) with a 22-16-4 record.

The Capitals snapped a seven-game losing streak with the one-sided victory.

The Habs will practise at 11 a.m. Monday in Brossard as they begin preparations for Tuesday’s game against the Carolina Hurricanes at the Bell Centre (7:30 p.m., RDS, TSN Radio 690). The Canadiens will then travel to Boston to face the Bruins Thursday night and then play back-to-back Super Bowl weekend afternoon games at the Bell Centre against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday and the Winnipeg Jets on Sunday. Both of those games are 1 p.m. starts.

There was a team meeting held after Saturday’s loss and coach Michel Therrien confirmed it was management’s decision to have all the players available to the media after the game.

There’s “nothing good to take from that game,” Therrien told reporters.

“We’ve got to move on. We’re facing adversity and we all know it,” the coach added, noting all teams face it, as do players through the course of their careers. “It’s how we’re going to react facing adversity.”

Said captain Brian Gionta: “Obviously, we’re not playing good hockey and we need to find a way to turn things around.

“We had three shots through almost the whole second period. Forty minutes of play, we have three shots. We’re off our game. We’ve got to find a way to keep supporting each other and find a way out of this.”

(Photo by Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press) 

Habs come up empty against Caps, by The Gazette’s Brenda Branswell

In the Habs’ Room, by Brenda Branswell

Habs are playing like alien zombies, by Jack Todd for The Gazette

The heat is on after Habs’ worst game of season, by The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs

No shortage of resolve, Therrien says, Canadiens.com

Capital punishment, TSN.ca

Caps blank Habs, washingtoncapitals.com

Ovechkin, Capitals snap slide, Washington Post

Ovechkin the magnificent magician, The Hockey News


  1. habstrinifan says:

    Can’t we all get along people??????


  2. JF says:

    A lot of people are blaming Marc Bergevin for the mess the Habs find themselves in. This seems premature to me; wasn’t it the Detroit GM who said that it takes ten years to be able to evaluate a GM’s work? This is Bergevin’s first 82-game season as GM. Since taking over, he has presided over two drafts, both of which pundits have called excellent, inked several players to long-term deals, made a few minor moves, and lured Stephane Waite away from the Blackhawks to coach Carey Price and Peter Budaj.

    At the moment, it can be argued that this last move is the only one to have really borne fruit. Without Price’s often spectacular play, the Habs would have long been out of the playoff race. He, and Budaj too on occasion, have allowed us to win games we would otherwise have lost.

    Of the other moves, fans were critical of the Desharnais contract almost from the moment it was signed. Desharnais has looked mostly good since about the twenty-game mark of this season, and he now centres the Habs’ only relatively consistent line; but the argument is still made that any team whose top centre is only 5’7″ and is ineffectual except with one particular player has a problem.

    The other moves are looking frankly bad. Brière was clearly a mistake; Parros, signed to be the team’s heavyweight and intimidation factor, rarely plays; and Murray is sometimes good but often bad. Bergevin also signed Alexei Emelin to a contract extension before he had really proven that he had fully recovered from what is nearly always a devastating injury. This extension is now looking dubious, since we don’t know whether Emelin will ever recover his pre-injury form.

    The only good thing about the minor moves is that they are all short-term. Even the two years to Brière will not seriously handcuff the team.

    I’m not about to judge Bergevin’s work yet, but I think that the upcoming trade deadline and the next off-season will be critical to him in really setting his mark on the team. If he does not find a way to get something for some of our impending free agents and to move veterans who should not be part of the team’s long-term core, I will begin to doubt. If instead he signs Markov and Diaz to multi-year deals, I will be seriously afraid of another long period of mediocrity. I think Diaz’s spot should be taken by Beaulieu, even if it means a lot of rookie mistakes at first; and if we keep Markov, it should be for no longer than two years. But I would prefer to see him traded while his value is still quite high.

  3. Sportfan says:

    I think we need some good news anyone got a site/report on how our prospects are doing?

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  4. frontenac1 says:

    Youppi. You Evil Orange Bas#rd! I am in a very dark place amigos. But I have seen the light. Better days are close at hand. Saludos!

  5. RetroMikey says:

    “Habs get day off Sunday to lick their wounds”
    Wow, you get rewarded for days off when you are on a losing streak.
    I’ve seen this happen many times with the club.
    When they stink it up, they are rewarded with on off day.
    I’m hoping they are reaching out to God, cause they need all the help they can get now and in the future.
    “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

  6. Maritime Ronn says:

    Perhaps several on HIO enjoy Mr. Boone – perhaps several do not – we always have choices to read or not.

    I have never met the gentleman, yet a thumbs up to an experienced insider that has been ‘In The Room’ as I…. it is always cool, Mr. Boone.

    Mike Boone says:
    January 26, 2014 at 10:03 am
    Brilliant, Ronn.
    Mike Boone
    Hockey Inside/Out blogger
    Therefore, please forgive me for a repost.
    As always, just some concerned thoughts about The Habs…skip them if you wish.

    As mentioned last week, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see this is a very unhappy team – the body language on the bench says it all.

    That mentioned, if anyone was really looking – and not being fooled by some lucky wins and early season success before opposing coaches got a hold of the videos, it was apparent over a month ago.

    DECEMBER 23, 2013 AT 12:12 PM
    …even with the very good record to date, there seems to be something wrong – a certain stress/level of frustration that can easily be seen in the body language and faces of guys like Subban-Eller-Prust-Gallagher-Galchenyuk-Bournival, and others…including Max with his sword celebration…
    Why has that transpired and getting worse?
    We can only speculate, yet here are some suggestions.

    Leadership void:
    – A Lame Duck Captain that knows he will not be here next year, and the rest of the guys in the room know that also.
    – A Lame Duck Assistant Captain in Markov.
    – Another assistant Captain that has become a 4-5 one dimensional Dman singing the same dressing room tunes.

    If in disagreement, please point out 1 other NHL team – where its supposed leadership group wearing the “C” and “As”, is in a similar state of turmoil?
    The guys in the room aren’t giving this group the time of day…

    Coaching: Team First
    – While he preaches “Team First”, it’s really all about HIM.

    Tipping point:
    You never, EVER, EVER berate and embarrass your BEST player on the ice and in public, for ALL the hockey world to see.
    You do that 1 on 1 in private.
    The idiotic callout(s), and coach imposed 10 minute misconduct towards Subban 18 days ago has been the turning point.

    Since that time in Philly, Subban is Minus -11 in 8 games, and has only 2 points. The team is 2-6-0. No coincidence there.

    – Total Unfairness of playing time, linemates and obvious Favoritism:

    Remember the fun, excitement, and looking forward to games when the EGG line was going?
    When Bournival was lighting it up with Plex and Gio?
    When PK and Marky were being considered as one of the best Dman pairings in the NHL?

    Then along came the ” Me and Davey” issue, and with the exception of a few games, the team has gone downhill since then.

    Anyone that has ever played the game knows what it’s like when a team is put in turmoil because the coach’s favourites play big, unearned minutes and preferred PP time…to the detriment of the team.

    Simply put, sooner or later, you lose the room.

    • Mattyleg says:

      Here it is again because you clearly liked it so much the first time:

      Mike Boone says:
      January 26, 2014 at 10:03 am
      Brilliant, Ronn.
      Mike Boone
      Hockey Inside/Out blogger

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Mark C says:

      So guys are pissing away the chance at playing for a championship, future contracts, and millions just because the coach slightly favors others?

      Yikes. Sounds like some real losers in the room.

      • Sean Bonjovi says:

        These players have a coach who uses a backwards system with NO structure, tells them that no matter who they are, they won’t see the ice unless they make a super-human physical effort every single play, and then still benches the guys who do play hard in favour of some lazy guys that he likes better.

    • SPATS says:

      Didn’t read your post earlier Ronn, but I came to the same conclusion
      (sort of) 100 posts or so below.

      There is no obvious leader and that’s why Gorges has stepped up. MT’s only qualification was his ability conduct press conferences en francais.

      Yesterday’s man destroying today’s players.

      Pack him up with Gio and Marky and give PK the C with a long term contract, bring back the low five and hire a coach who has his back (Boucher)

      Time to admit old school antics and attitudes belong in the past, not he present or future.

      Canadiens are reminding me of Augusta National pre Tiger (i’m talking about Tiger the golfer not the waitress banger)


    • GGtheHab says:

      thanks, much better post than the usual bitchin and moaning and ridiculous trade suggestions normally found here.

    • PeterD says:

      Well spoken Ronn…clearly sums ip how I’m viewing yhis situation.
      Very well said.

    • habfan01 says:

      Ever hear of sarcasm Ronn?

  7. jrshabs1 says:

    MB has the players alright. MB has the worst D in the league. MB has the smallest forward group in the league. MB has the worst coach in the league. Did I miss anybody?
    MB sure does have the “players”.

    MOAR BIGGAR!!!!!

  8. WindsorHab-10 says:

    It will continue to be rock bottom until Therrien & his staff depart.

    • D Mex says:

      His staff = Gallant, Daigneault, Jodoin and Waite.
      > Please expand – what are the issues with them ?

      ALWAYS Habs –
      D Mex

      • habcertain says:

        Daigneault needs to go, he could barely play in a defending capacity. that was never a part of his game.

        • Mattyleg says:

          You don’t need to be good at hockey, or any particular aspect of it, to be able to coach it. Lindy Ruff and Mike Babcock (for different reasons) are examples of this.

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • jrshabs1 says:

            Lindy Ruff:
            Ruff played in 691 NHL games, scoring 105 goals and adding 195 assists for an even total of 300 points. He also recorded 1,264 penalty minutes. In 52 playoff games, Ruff recorded 11 goals and 13 assists while accumulating 193 penalty minutes

            What are you talking about Matty? if Lindy was on this crap team he’d be the leading scorer. I thought you said you are some kind of hockey expert?

            MOAR BIGGAR!!!!!

          • Forum Dog says:

            Lindy Ruff was a good player, and I’ll bet Babcock was as well. But you are right. They were not long-time NHLers. Tough, smart, and a student of the game. That’s what you need in a coach.

          • habcertain says:

            I understand that, the absence of skill usual depicts a student of the game, combined with leadership skills, to make a good coach. I don’t believe JJ fits the bill, based upon regression of guys like Diaz and Gorges who’s play is way down form where it was a couple of years ago. We gave up Streit because we thought Diaz was an upgrade.

          • D Mex says:

            Streit walked because he wanted to be a full-time D-Man : the Habs didn’t see it that way but the Islanders were willing to play along.

            ALWAYS Habs –
            D Mex

          • GrimJim says:

            Streit left in July 2008. Diaz was signed in May 2011. If Diaz was a replacement for streit why did the habs wait three freakin years?

      • Sportfan says:

        Daigneault seems pretty useless to be honest.

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        • CJ says:

          Or perhaps he’s trying to mould a work of art using my kid’s play do. Truth is probably somewhere in the middle.

          My wife’s cousin played defence when JJ was coaching in Hartford. Said he was really good. Very knowledgeable, patient and communicative.

          • Sportfan says:

            Oh cool thanks for sharing CJ, I just feel that maybe the habs should finally grab Larry Robinson! lol

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          • CJ says:

            I like Larry. I’ve met him a few times. He always comes back to Metcalfe ON to play in his brother Brian’s memorial golf tournament. I only posted what I did to say that what I’ve heard, as little as it was, was very positive.

      • Strummer says:

        Keep Gallant for the interim and Waite but the rest need to go.

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

    • RetroMikey says:

      Nope, I disagree.
      Even if you bring in a coach like Mike Babcock for example, it will still reach rock bottom with the team that we have on the present roster.
      Don;t blame the coach as we have in the past with Julien, Carbonneau or Martin, blame the players and the players drafted by Trevor Timmins.

      “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

  9. Mattyleg says:

    Lots of people blaming Bergevin.

    I don’t really understand why.

    Here is a team that had an amazing run in November and into December, played competitive hockey for a month, then fell apart.

    He has the players to do the job, as they proved earlier on in the season, but have stopped doing it properly. He doesn’t need new players, he needs the players that he has to want to play harder and take their situation seriously.

    I don’t think they are responding to bad coaching, and I don’t buy the idea that our players are small and therefore get more tired than big players. Big players get plenty tired.

    Marc Denis was saying last night that sometimes players start to slide, and don’t see it as a serious thing until they get the double wakeup call of the loss and their GM’s disapproval (face-the-media duty).

    If the GM makes a trade, it’s easy for underperforming players to say, ‘Oh good, he was obviously the problem. I don’t have to worry now.’ The way that MB responded was perfect, and I don’t see A Huge Blockbuster Trade (à la Brian Burke) making a big difference to the way we’re playing as a team.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • bwoar says:

      People are blaming Bergevin, because we don’t agree that MT has the players to do the job. If at this stage, the players he has don’t want to play hard and take their situation seriously, he doesn’t have the right players.

      The degree to which this mess is Bergervin’s fault is debatable, but he’ll need to respond with more than making the team face the media music. A huge blockbuster trade won’t get us into the playoffs or make us suddenly competitive, but it may set the table for the turnover this team needs, in my opinion.


      • habcertain says:

        well to start, he chose the coach, signed Briere and DD, PK contract issues when the door was open for a long term signing, approved which kids were staying/going, to/from the big club. none of those decisions have turned out to be prophetic. the signing of Waite appears to be the only good coaching decision. Not sure how much input Gallant is allowed to offer.

        • Mattyleg says:

          a) Coach is fine
          2) Briere was a mistake, but that’s all well and good in retrospect. Could have gone either way. And to say that you always saw it coming is untruthful.
          iii) PK signing was perfect, bad idea to have signed him long-term at that stage
          d) Rookies moves have been good.

          I don’t see what you’re saying otherwise.

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • habcertain says:

            a) you are delusional
            2) retrospect is the affirmation of a track record, he alone made the decision.
            iii) just your opinion, but what we know is PK was willing, and looking, to sign a long term deal for far less then it will take now, and now there are no guarantees he will even resign, let alone long term, which is the bigger issue.
            d) Bournival’s game has regressed to a non-factor. there was no confidence that they could have developed the game the 3 d-men sent down, when many here though anyone of them could have stuck with the club, no advancement of play with Chucky/Eller/Gally.

    • Forum Dog says:

      It’s true that we need to take a long-view of things, but there is also a difference between blame and criticism. There is no real blame here. It is a combination of a number of different things that has led them to where they are, but Bergevin is not without criticism.

      Briere is like a pale ghost out there. He looks like he’s just going through the motions. Montreal has already spit him out. That was Bergevin’s main signing this summer. Meanwhile, Jagr is playing for half the money and moving through the record books in Jersey. Can you imagine him playing on Plekanec’s RW?

      • Mattyleg says:

        I can imagine a lot of things, including Briere nipping into the o-zone and potting nifty goals, energized by playing in his home province.

        I can also imagine Jagr lumbering through the paces, and dropping through the lines like a stone, counting the days before he can retire back to Czech.

        Could have gone either way, really.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • Forum Dog says:

          lol- that’s true. Hindsight doesn’t help a damn thing, and the fact is that they need Briere “nipping into the no-zone and potting nifty goals”. But you can’t help but imagine how good it would be to have Jagr’s big ass protecting the puck down low and dishing off the half-wall to Plekanec or someone else. Not to mention what he’d bring to the dressing room and the media scrum. It is what it is….

    • habstrinifan says:

      “Marc Denis was saying last night that sometimes players start to slide, and don’t see it as a serious thing until they get the double wakeup call of the loss and their GM’s disapproval (face-the-media duty).”
      …… and coaches too.

      Just saying!

      • Mattyleg says:

        I’m sure they already know well enough that their coach disapproves of their poor performance, but when it’s your big boss coming down on you, it’s more real.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • habstrinifan says:

          You missed my point. You keep blaming players and exonerating a coach who shows very questionable management skills.

          Coaches do slide too. Everybody (including MB and MT) step up and acknowledge and correct. Then maybe we’ll have mutual respect and trust and a winning atmosphere.

    • Bob_Sacamano says:

      Hmm, let me see. Why would people blame Bergevin?

      Maybe because

      1. he did nothing to improve this team after the Cole trade? Acquiring/signing Parros and Murray did weaken this team in fact.

      2. he´s responsible for Therrien still being the head coach of this team. He should never have been hired. At this point it doesn´t matter. Bergevin has to fire him and give Boucher a chance. It can´t get worse.

      I still have hope for Bergevin. At least he didn´t risk the future of this team beyond 2014/2015 but he has to wake uo. For Therrien there´s absolutely no hope btw.

      • Mattyleg says:

        Your posts aren’t good.
        Just constant complaining about Therrien.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • Bob_Sacamano says:

          I can praise Timmins, Price, Subban, Plekanec, Eller, Gallagher, Bournival, Pacioretty, Markov, Emelin or Beaulieu if you like.

          Well, I wrote an honest reply and what did I get? A crap reply.

          Anyway, I absolutely hate to watch Therrien destroying this team and this is why I complain so much about him. We could do much better with a decent head coach and it´s sickening to watch this mess. It´s not my problem if you can´t see that.

          Your posts are always boring btw.

  10. Forum Dog says:

    Folks, let’s hope last night was rock bottom. This team couldn’t do anything right. They are simply not competing hard enough. There is no fight, especially in their top offensive players. Guys are all watching the puck instead of taking a man. Opposing forwards are allowed to bat at pucks with no physical deterrence. Until they man-up and show a little pride, it won’t matter who coaches this team. I get that they are hitting a bit of wall physically, which happens when most of the lineup is moving past their physical prime, but the schedule isn’t gonna ease up between now at April, so they can let that become an excuse. Eller pointed out after the game that it all starts with attitude. Cammalleri said it a different way a couple of years ago, but it would apply now. They are playing like losers.

    Bergevin forced them to face the media last night. Obviously this is mandated by the league, so he was within his rights to do it. But he needs to step up too. If his players need to be accountable, he should be as well. Maybe I don’t have my ear to the right channels, but I haven’t heard boo from him. He should speak to the media and explain what is happening from his vantage point. I’d like to know what he thinks is going on. The coach is hired based on his experience and system. The players are brought in based on their skill-set and personality. The GM is the guy who has the vision to bring them all together. Therrien wants to talk about adversity, and yes all teams go through it, but this has been a good 6-8 weeks of “adversity”, and it is proving very adverse.

    Final thought – I have no idea why Budaj didn’t get that start last night. The guy hadn’t started a game since January 8th, he was due, and they were coming of a couple of bad games already. Strange.

    • Sportfan says:

      Last year when Price/team crapped out Budaj would start they would win then Carey would win!

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      • Forum Dog says:

        From what you can gather through the media, his teammates love him. They shouldn’t need a reason to compete, but when things are going like they have been, maybe they needed one. Starting Budaj might have given them some inspiration that they don’t currently have. That’s all second-guessing, but the players seem defeated.

    • New says:

      I think there comes a time when you have to call a bottom tier of the league team a bottom tier of the league team. Sure you can start every season saying my team has a real shot at the playoffs. Sure you can watch them win half their games and say my team is a contender. But come on, when they dip a little bit and everybody criticizes every play, lists the mistakes, and calls them bums? No they are just what they are. A really hard working bunch of guys with no real stars to carry them. They need everybody playing together to do anything. Danny Briere isn’t suddenly going to become Sydney Crosby just by putting a CH on his chest.

      I think they started Price rather than Budaj last night because the team is not hitting on any cylinders and they don’t want Budaj to take the responsibility. When you look across at the other coach and pull your main guy you’re telling him ok, we’re done. And he calls the dogs off. You do the same when it’s your turn.

      • Forum Dog says:

        It’s true, but they do have some potential there. A team with guys like Price, Subban, Markov, Plekanec and Gallagher shouldn’t be a bottom tier team. They even have some decent 3rd liners. They are lacking some top-line skill, there is no question, but the problem is that they are not showing any intensity or confidence. If they got that back, they have some players who are legitimate game breakers. They just need to play like it. Something needs to inspire them, be it an inspirational performance on the ice, a shakeup in the locker room, or a shake-up behind they bench.

  11. Sportfan says:

    Timo: Is MT fired yet?

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  12. Mattyleg says:

    Hi Trini,
    I wasn’t able to respond earlier…

    As for the ‘Therrien sending Price out of the meeting’, I know that it was from a previous game, but people were talking about it as though it had happened last night!

    Also, it wasn’t a Tweeter that said that there had been a players’ meeting, it was Therrien.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  13. Frozen Village says:

    Keep: Move:
    Price. Pacioretty
    Subban. DD
    Plek. Georges
    Eller. Diaz
    Emelin. Briere
    Galchenyuk. Bourque
    Gallagher. Gionta.
    De la Rose

    Indifferent with the others, all else in play. Would prefer to work with Beaulieu, McCarron, Markov –

    turn the keys MB, do something other than shop for clothes.

    More Swedes for the Lions in Winter

  14. Landof10000lakesHab says:

    I am officially joining the long list of posters who have lamented both a lack of size and physicality on the Montréal Canadiens. The last two seasons have shown that the Habs have sufficient speed and skill to be successful at the start of each season, but get worn down by the lack of size and physicality after half a season. In todays’ NHL, top-tier teams ice players who combine a near-perfect blend of size, physicality, speed, and skill.

    On the present Habs team, and from a size perspective, one can note positively that our pocket-sized captain is not likely to be retained after seasons’ end, that half-pint homeboy Daniel Briere is signed for only two seasons, and the undersized duo of Diaz and the Cube are not likely to be patrolling the Habs D-line next year. Things should be looking “up”, right?

    Well, there is room for optimism on the D side in the not-to-distant future. It is probable that some combination of Greg Pateryn, Tinordi, & Beaulieu will get a fair number of games in Habville next season with at least one of the three likely on a full-time basis. A given that MB will sign PK long-term, a likelihood that Markov is resigned for 2-3 years, and fair to assume MB will add at least one TBD UFA Dman (with size and some skill hopefully). I do not believe MB will resign Crankshaft next season despite the size and physicality as he is woefully short on speed or skill. Despite a so-so season for Gorges (2nd on team for +/-, leads in blocked shots), and recent play of Emelin aside (lack of training season / major surgery recovery), I’m seeing the D as a middling blend of size, physicality, speed, and skill next season.

    Size and physicality will continue to be a major concern with the Habs top nine forward group for the foreseeable future. One undersized skill forward is sufficient for any NHL team to absorb and most Hab fans would agree that Brendan Gallagher is the one diminutive delight keeper who plays several inches and many pounds beyond his stature. Despite a recent surge in points, a fair number of HIO posters would still like to expedite wee Davey D out of Habville. Throw in the aforementioned Daniel Briere signed for another season and it is hard to picture things improving quickly for the shortest forward group in the NHL.

    Size & physicality support for the forward group is on the way soon, right? Well, a review of the AHL DogPound forwards show that Sven Andrighetto and Christian Thomas are the most talented O AHL prospects – but both a mere 5’9″. The Habs do have numerous young O minded prospects that played recently in the World Juniors, including – Hudon, Reway, Collberg, and Lehkonen. All are skilled and speedy O types, but not-a-one claim 6’0″ in height. Hockey’s Future also points out that an area of weakness for the Habs is lack of size and physicality at forward.

    To be fair – the Habs have talented forward prospects with excellent size and physicality, including De La Rose, McCarron, and Crisp, but these are long-term projects that may top out as 4th line / depth support, at best. While he may never achieve the success of his role model, Milan Lucic, it is possible that Michael McCarron eventually blossoms into a true NHL power forward. It is also possible that Jacob de la Rose becomes a solid two-way 2nd line forward, and that Connor Crisp turns into a super-sized Brandon Prust. Even if all three eventually make the show, none can help the “big” team any time soon.

    However, Habs GM Marc Bergevin does have resources at his disposal to add inches and pounds to the forward group:

     MB can trade speed & skill, or defensive prospect depth, for size & physicality.
     MB has cap resources to add deadline size & physicality (both short/ long term deals)
     MB can sign 2-3 players with size & physicality in the off-season.

    Habs Director of Amateur Scouting Trevor Timmins now has 30 draft picks that have played an NHL game. Trevor and scouting staff should continue to draft quality prospects, hopefully more that combine size, physicality, speed, and skill (also plenty of character, per MB).

    Plus – Alex Galchenyuk and Lars Eller both have requisite size, skill, and speed which bode well for the critical Centre position in future seasons.

    Current losing streak aside, the Montréal Canadiens are competitive enough to ice an NHL top 12-15 team, keeping most fans hopeful (if not somewhat critical) until such time as prospects noted are NHL ready and MB has made sufficient moves to allow the Habs to compete with the “Big Boys”.

    What say you?

    • sheds88 says:

      great article, thanks

    • wildwilly says:

      I often think of what might have happened had Gainey the foresight five years ago to trade the pending UFAs (Komisarek, Kovalev, Higgins, and a few others). At the time, teams would have given up loads of picks and prospects for those players. At the trade deadline we were sitting in 7th place.

      We held onto the players, made the playoffs, and were beaten in four straight in the first round. In the off season, we traded for Gomez and signed Cammalleri and Gionta to five-year contracts.

      And that is how the foundation of Gainey’s “5 year plan” was laid.

      What will our new “5 year plan” be? More smallish, older players with no trade clauses and high price tags? I hope not.

  15. habstrinifan says:

    Why I want the flying frenchmen?

    Individual excellence is beautiful.


  16. WhatUp says:

    whoever said that within 2 years we’ve had wholesale changes at management level with similar results = bingo. you just don’t turn this around on a dime..
    MT is not the sole responsible but he is not part of the solution. not a huge fan of J Martin but he did have a system adjusted for his team – he did take them to the conference finals (longest run in 20 yrs – not too shabby)
    as for trades: Markov has to go period (could yield something decent – not great but decent)… also Plecks must go. there will/ should be desperate teams out there (Van, Was, Det- even Chicago) that would, IMO, likely overpay for him as they are bubble or contenders wishing to consolidate….we are just pretenders right now (last year was a mirage and we are free falling) – no point in holding on to him for now as we should get solid pieces to build on…Bourque, Gionta, Diaz and Briere should go but will not bring back anything to build on – just a few side pieces
    on the positive side this is a great opportunity to accelerate a rebuild as opposed to patching and prolonging the agony of perpetual mediocre teams

  17. HabFab says:

    So the Pope releases some white doves while praying for peace in the Ukraine. One is attacked by a crow and another by a seagull, perfectly ironic and symbolic if you are familiar with the situation… wow!

  18. CH Marshall says:

    Anyone know if Boucher played for or worked with Babcock while at McGill?

  19. mksness says:

    so everyone wants a trade. so let’s see…
    – DD don’t think there is a market for him
    – franky B, no market
    – diaz small market but won’t be a great return
    – briere, no market
    – murray no market
    – markov, good market but you’ll only get draft picks
    – gionta, descent market but you’ll only get draft picks
    – bourque, no market. most likely will have to swap for a crap contract and retain salary

    any trades this team makes with their junk won’t bring in anything this year or for years to come leaving huge holes on this team. Unless the team is willing to trade some of there better players for other players that might fit this team’s style of play you won’t get better via a trade.

    • Thomas Le Fan says:

      We cannot BUILD this team through trades. It’s time to go with the youth that we’ve drafted. We can’t do much worse. I’m not an advocate of “the tank” but being mediocre with older veterans does not accomplish much and just puts you in a weaker situation vis a vis your future draft positions. Due to the Pollock legacy, no GM wants to be the guy who gives Montreal a good young player for table scraps. All we will ever be able to trade for are the Gomezes, Giontas, Coles, Bourques and Boullions of this world and we’ll give up valuable assets to get them. It’s long passed time to go with the players we are developing and win or lose with them.
      As for the veterans? Since no GM is going to give us good young roster players for them (this is where some trades might help) trade for the best draft picks available, rinse and repeat.

      Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

  20. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Here in Europe, where there is a multiplicity of languages and therefore a multiplicity of language-and-media issues blended with nationalism and historical divisions etc, they have a solution for both rugby and football (=soccer):

    Only British players and coaches are hired for the English Premiership and the European rugby club teams in Britain and Ireland; only Italians are hired for Serie A (football); only French players/coaches are hired for French rugby clubs; only Spanish (can include South American) players and coaches for Real Madrid and Barcelona etc.

    In this way, the local media NEVER have to try and cope with a player or coach/manager who can’t speak their language.

    Isn’t it fantastic?

  21. jrshabs1 says:

    Habs have to drop the French only rule….if not..staus quo. Is there a qualified Thai speaking coach out there? As long as he doesn’t hold crying undersized captains in his arms..I’m cool with that.

    MOAR BIGGAR!!!!!

  22. habsfan2014 says:

    Hire Boucher and make a couple of trades ….all will then be good in Habs nation again

    • Captain aHab says:

      Even Boucher himself once said he didn’t know if his system would work in the NHL.

      Not sure I would want to watch 82 games of it either.

      The only way I would sign him would be to a short “show me” contract.

      Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

      • D Mex says:

        Short term / Long term is not the issue. Having the right person and putting a halt to the revolving door, ie : stability, is what’s important.

        Boucher flashed out in TB too fast for me – I saw nothing in his stint there (beyond the novelty factor) to indicate something special had slipped away from us and, based on what that team is doing now, it sure does appear he had some decent talent, including Lecavalier, to work with.

        ALWAYS Habs –
        D Mex

        • Eddie says:

          If you start with the premise that the coach must speak French and then you add that the coach must have NHL experience, you are left with Boucher, Carbonneau, and maybe a few others. It’s not a long list.

          • Dunboyne Mike says:

            Which contravenes both of the other bruisingly powerful cultures at play here:

            – Win at all costs
            – Make money

            Because of my affection for all things Quebecois I have kept quiet about this complete idiocy until it was obvious that the francophone community also considers it complete idiocy.

  23. Plekasuares says:

    Wish we hired Pierre McGuire…

    • arcosenate says:

      We’d just suck louder.

    • Captain aHab says:

      We could look forward to him drafting MONSTERS!!!

      Remember when he thought that the Leafs were building a D to rival Montreal’s legendary top 3 when they got Phaneuf? Yeah, that panned out…

      Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

      • Clay says:

        I also remember that fool saying that Komisarek made Markov look good. What an idiot.

        ☞ “The deepest sin of the human mind is to believe things without evidence” ~ Aldous Huxley ☜

        • HabFab says:

          How are you enjoying the winter? Must be a bitch after all those years away! And your poor wife and daughter…..

          • Clay says:

            Hi Frank. Not so bad here out west – except for that week or so when we were colder than the North Pole…but yeah – I haven’t really experienced winter in 11 years, so I’m not really a fan. 🙂

            ☞ “The deepest sin of the human mind is to believe things without evidence” ~ Aldous Huxley ☜

    • Captain aHab says:

      Pierre McGuire is the Mel Kiper of hockey. They talk about so many aspects of so many prospects that after a while, it all becomes a blur. But because they can tell you the shoe sizes of all prospects as well as the days on which their girlfriends get their periods, they are hailed as geniuses.

      Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

    • mushalain says:

      LOL!. No Way. No one cares if Prospect “A” ate vanilla ice cream while playing hockey in Turku, Finland.

      Just for kicks watch the following video

  24. arcosenate says:

    Good news, another outdoor game. Kind of makes you wonder why anyone with a frozen body of water and 15 thousand lawn chairs can’t get an NHL franchise.

  25. Propwash says:

    Hopefully they drop this “we’re a grinding team” shtick and resume playing to their strengths.


  26. Tis Himself says:

    A major bright spot last night: Josh Gorges did not score on Price!

  27. Blouin says:

    A couple of notes on the Habs: I really think Diaz is done regardless of their playoff aspirations. He can move the puck and has decent first-pass vision from his own zone, but he plays too soft which is an unfortunate pattern of a couple Habs defensemen. His shot from the point is notoriously inaccurate. Trading him won’t net much since he’s been a healthy scratch from a batch of blueliners that leave much, much to be desired.

    With regard to Gionta, I can actually see him getting moved to improve the team. He still possesses some sniper skill, but not nearly as much as they need. It’s not unheard of to move a captain, but if the return is right or it opens up a wing on Plekanec’s line for someone younger, faster, and with better hands, I see Bergevin making that move.

    To chime in on Letang: I agree with those in the camp that teams will always take the long look on a player with a massively expensive contract and an injury history. One day I’d like to visit Bizzaro World to see some of these arm chair GMs try to run a hockey team for a season or two and see what results are. Could you imagine?

    • mushalain says:

      The Canadians moved or let go a bunch of Captains in the past 20 years.

      Guy Carbonneau
      Kirk Muller
      Pierre Turgeon
      Mike Keane
      Vincent Damphousse
      And last but not least Saku Koivu.

  28. HardHabits says:

    Awesome. The get the day off today after taking the night off last game. Here’s to vacation time.

  29. AH says:

    Hey, let’s have a caption contest for Price’s picture above; how about: “What the frick am I doing here??” LOL!

    • Captain aHab says:

      “1600+ posts last night and NOT ONE from Timo?”

      Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

    • NDG BOY says:

      In my opinion Marc Bergevin is responsible for what’s going on,he is the general manager if I was Molson I would have him in my office and ask what is his plan to change this team and if he says time and patience then he should fire his associates and go out and hire the best people available. Screw the we must hire french speaking. Hire the best peeps available

      We are not as far as u think

      • Captain aHab says:

        MB is going to get another couple of years before getting ****canned. My guess is that they already had the discussion you mentioned a while back. My hope is that the agreement between the two wasn’t to tell everyone to be patient but to blow assets on rentals to squeak into the playoffs every year. We’ll know this soon enough.

        Don’t mind being patient especially if it means not blowing all available cap space each year on contracts we’ll soon regret as Gainey did.

        Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

      • JUST ME says:

        Bergevin would tell Molson exactly what he would tell you. Did you expect me to have a Stanley cup contender within 18 months ? Really ?

        If i judge by your nickname NDG BOY you know that hiring a coach does involve the french language. It is not going to change whether you and i care or not. Remember the Cunneyworth era ? Molson was very clear about it, ain`t no exception to that rule from now on. You may talk about it until you turn blue in the face you know that it serves no purpose.

    • wjc says:

      How about “oh well, at least I am making 6 and half million a year for the next 5 years…..let me see that should give me about 40 million dollars, eh, eh.


  30. alfieturcotte says:

    Who to trade, who to trade……To begin with, I wish we could trade our GM for someone with more knowledge and experience than MB. He is proving less competent than PG, and that is no easy task.

    Those with their best years (or knees) behind them: Markov, Gorges, Moen, and Gionta. We can get some value for these guys at the trade deadline. One player I would def not resign is Markov. If he looks slow now, imagine how he will look in 2 or 3 yrs (at $5mm/per)?

    And yes, though I believe Price has had a much stronger season (thus far), he should be traded. He could fetch a nice little booty and the Canadiens can save a nice amount of $$$.

    As for Diaz, Murray, Bourque, Briere, no market for these guys. Let them walk or waive them.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Hey Alfie, all conventional suggestions until you sneak in the trade-Price proposal! You’re right to insist that any player is trade material in the interests of the team. But if you look at how other teams have suffered — egs Flyers; Canucks in their Finals vs Boston — when the goalie situation was unresolved or unsettled, would you not want to ring-fence Price as perhaps the one part of the ice where we are secure?

      • CJ says:

        Hammer meet nail. Well said!

      • Clay says:

        Hi MIke. Price has yet to prove he is a playoff goalie. I hope he gets a chance to prove it this year, but the way this team is playing, that looks more unlikely with every game.

        ☞ “The deepest sin of the human mind is to believe things without evidence” ~ Aldous Huxley ☜

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          Hey Clay. Hope Alberta’s agreeing with you. You’re right that the playoffs are kind of Price’s final frontier. I’m not sure if I want to see him cross the border into it with the team in its current state (although if last night is anything to go by, this issue will not arise!).

          Next best thing, hopefully he has a great Olympics.

          He looks like a dejected 16-year-old in that pic, like he just saw his girl walk off with the captain of the football team….

          Bobby can help: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W3giK6DbSVA

      • alfieturcotte says:

        Problem with the Canucks was not an “unresolved” goalie situation. Rather, they committed $$$ to Luongo, an overrated and overpaid choker. Flyers – bad goaltending. You ought to make sure you know the facts friend.

    • NDG BOY says:

      Trade price? Really? Who would u trade him for?

      We are not as far as u think

    • boing007 says:

      Leaving Budaj as the Habs number one goaltender? Surely you jest?

      Richard R

  31. SPATS says:

    When there is a lack of leadership in any group a loud sucking noise begins to be heard. It’s called a vacuum. Our CH vacuum has been reaching a higher and higher pitch for 20 long years now!

    If this were a crew of oil rig workers, a guy like Josh could step up an lead because he’s fearless (as evidenced by his shot blocking)

    But this is a situation where leadership requires skill AND talent and that’s where Josh comes up short. Give Josh an “A” for effort and for hearing the vacuum sound but he will never rise to the “C” for obvious reasons.

    Gio, Markov, and Pleks fall into the Saku category and in truth we have been short oF serious C material since Patrick left.

    Our leader must embrace the spotlight, be fearless and take risks – and our management must have his back.

    Carbo was good and he had Gainey to learn from. Ditto Muller. When Patrick left and in the years since, it’s been guys like Damphousse, Saku, Markov, Kovalev, Pleks, Gomer and Gio.

    All reluctant leaders.

    Who among our current crop can meet the demands, embrace the role and step up?

    It must be P.K.

    The oldest of 3 brothers all with a strong father.

    Pernell Karl must be permitted to lead us into the next generation and allow the last 20 years to fade away. The world has changed a lot in 20 years, time for the HABS to change with it.

    Cut MT, Josh, Gio and Marky loose and give the C to Subby.

    Pleks and Gally get the A’s.

    Boucher seems like the logical choice to appease the insecure majority and he’s had a hand in developing Subby (and Price?)

    AND Boucher will have Subban’s back.

    I hope it happens, and I hope Subban’s agent is stirring the pot. Timing is good and hopefully Geoff will end this experiment and the sooner the better.

    How nice would it be to come back from the Olympics with MT put out to pasture and PK and Price wearing gold?

    Do any of you doubt for a second that MT would have gotten the job had Boucher not been in TB?

    The stars are lining up and I for one hope this opportunity comes to pass.

    Could it be any worse?

    My good friend Ian Cobb will tell you that I have given up my RDS feed as it’s costing me $15 extra a month for approx 3 games not carried by TSN HABS or CBC.

    Last night’s game was one for em.

    Apparently I was right on that decision.

    Go big or go home.

    Give PK a big contract and the C and get the he’ll out of his kitchen and let him be our future!


    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Until there’s a forceful counter-argument, I’m with this. Also like that you sorted the A’s.

      I wondered aloud yesterday about PK as captain. To those who suggested that he hadn’t yet attained the necessary maturity, perhaps the captaincy would immediately accelerate that process?

      Nice signature, Spats.

      • SPATS says:

        Thank you DM.

        It will hinge on Boucher and looking forward not backward.

        MT’s hiring was looking backward and it’s obvious they don’t want to play for him and neither would I from what I’ve seen on 24CH. And that’s another bug, lose that reality show like yesterday!!! Another failed experiment that can’t be helping.


    • Eddie says:

      I like the big strokes of your plan. But you can not keep Plekanec if you make Subban the captain. Just my hunch of course. But I think Plekanec would not want to be here.

      The more conservative, more likely move, is they make Plekanec captain and Subban would get an A.

    • ont fan says:

      So now we have one choice for a coach? How ridiculous.

      • SPATS says:

        Boucher and PK have history, and that is why I see him getting a shot (along with the other obvious qualifications)

        I can’t see PK blossoming under another old school type. Boucher has learned from his experience and is a deep thinker. He deserves a shot.


        • ont fan says:

          We get what we deserve then. I am as upset with the fans as mch as the team. What other sports organization limits themselves the way this one does. Doesn’t matter how good your qualifications. Get your head out of the sand or live with mediocrity.

  32. Frank2468 says:

    I feel so sorry for Price he looks so shell shocked in the picture. Wonder whats going through his mind. I made some spectacular saves this week for nothing. These guys in front of me suck the big one and thanks guys for the support just before the Olympics, bet I look great in front of Babcock and company. Wonder if I even get a start in Sochi. What now is MB going to come to me and say tuff it out Carry. After this season we are going to start the rebuild all over again. Bet he’s screaming inside saying stop this dam ride I want off now!!!!!! I’m not going to resign with this stupid organization I want out and now exit stage left. See ya wouldn’t want to be ya. And that would look good on MB and company!!!!

  33. wjc says:

    Remember: A winning streak is just around the corner, and losing does not last forever.

    When you lose it feels like you can never win again and when you are winning you feel invincible.

    I have seen the Canadiens play and have been impressed. Last night and the last week has not been their best by a long shot.


    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      The long view — and you’re right if you’re saying we must keep track of it. A question though: in your last sentence did you mean to write “best”? Seems like the gist of your post was building to the opinion that, although bad, this recent stretch has not been the Habs’ worst.

  34. Slackman says:

    This team needs a prolific (or at least regular) goal scorer.

    Why didn’t we sign Jagr?

    • wjc says:

      He is 41 effing years old, how long do you think he can play. He is getting close to the end of the line, what does a young team like Montreal want with an aging player.

      He will disappear in the playoffs when it gets intense, just like last year. Sure he could have helped but so what go with youth. Briere is finished, so you ride him out for a couple more months and say good bye to him. Hindsight is always perfect, other mistakes will be made by other G.M.’s, but you have to take a chance.

      Now let it go, move on, the train left the station….choo….choo.


      • Slackman says:

        Well when he was available and willing to play for montreal and myself and hundreds of others said let’s go and get him, well that wasn’t hindsight.

        He’s 41, Brier’s 36. I think he has one more point than he is years old, at 42 points so far. He would’ve gelled well with Plekanec, he would’ve been a great mentor for our youth.

        The way I see it it was a blown opportunity to sign an impact player in order to sign a francophone so that we could pacify those who feel this entire team needs to be from St-Louis-du-Ha-Ha and its whereabouts.

        I think we’re the only team that hires players based on whether ot not they can speak a language. Briere parle le francais, mais il ne conte pas de buts.

        But hey what do I know right?

      • HabsTrueBlue says:

        Yet he leads his team in scoring by a wide margin and has more points than anyone on the Habs.

  35. homerbowen says:

    We lack players who can score. Our D is basically, slow and soft. We have too many small players who spend too much time brushing the snow off their jerseys. We have a number of players who are beyond, and in some cases far beyond their prime. While I don’t care for MT’s coaching doesn’t most of the above fall under the GM?
    Oh, and by the way screw the language police when it comes to sporting teams.

    • boing007 says:

      It’s politically incorrect to say screw the language police. The police are your friend. As long as you do what you’re told to do.

      Richard R

    • Captain aHab says:

      It’s “soff” not “soft”.

      Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

    • wjc says:

      It is called communication. You could go over to a French version of HIO, but I can’t because I do not speak the language.

      So unless you have a bi lingual coach the whole PROCESS does not work. You need to communicate, answer questions, satisfy the media in both languages or they will feel left out and the Canadiens as a business will suffer.

      Translations would be a nightmare, wrong slants, and missing the point would be the norm. If he only spoke French, the English side in Montreal would be offended.

      COMMUNICATION is important in a TWO language system. You have to work within those limitations.

      If you have a television station then you are either French or English, you have to pick one culture or the other.


  36. habs-hampton says:

    to paraphrase Timo:
    “Is Therrien still coach?”

  37. bwoar says:

    While I’m not thrilled with MB’s wait-ans-see holding pattern, I’d like to take a minute to remind everyone that this mess is all Bob Gainey’s fault. Even today we’re feeling the effects of his terrible Black Summer. Where he had the chance to hand the team over to youngsters, he went out and brought some VERY expensive veterans and we’ve never recovered from a personnel standpoint.

    Too small? “Gomez, Gionta and Cammalleri, please!”

    Poor D? Ugh, that’s Gomez again.

    Watery leadership? Capt. Giomta on deck.

    Rene Bourque? Well, that’s on Gauthier a bit, but you get the point.

    The current slide will likely give MB the justification that he needs (and he needs it big time) to sell come the trade deadline. Yes, I do mean blow up the team. I doubt Molson will allow that unless we’re absolutely hopeless.

    With Gionta and Markov coming UFA, and others needing new contracts, this is Bergevin’s “Gainey” moment. Will he make the same mistakes? Will he turn things over? I really think we aren’t gonna be much worse with plugging in some kids and maybe one depth guy (how about a big centre who can win draws? I’d take that over Lars Eller any day of the week.) I do know one thing: we definitely aren’t going to suddenly get better.

    Leave these kooks in, Diaz, etc. Tank it up, trade the old men and let younger legs take over. Don’t sign any more marketing-move over-the-hill Frenchmen (seriously, who didn’t see this coming from a mile away? Oh wait: a naive rookie franco GM, that’s who. Or was it Gentleman Geoff’s brilliant idea??)

    This is the second test for Bergevin (he gets a pass, but not more, on test #1, P.K. Subban’s bridge.) Much like his first test, this next one will have far-reaching results on the timeline. I hope Bergevin doesn’t Gainey it up.


  38. Habilis says:

    *Logs on*
    *Sees Therrien is still the coach*
    *Utters many curse words*
    *Logs off*

  39. HabFab says:

    Call me crazy but I would be surprised to see him come back in the fall;

  40. HabFab says:

    Dave Stubbs –

    Last #Habs players-only mtg I recall: Feb 9 2009 after 6-2 loss in CAL. Team bowled next day, lost 7-2 in EDM, Carbo turfed a month later

  41. rljmartin says:

    All other players must have been doing so great that Leblanc got 6:20 TOI. Excellent, great chance to really show his stuff.

    Remember that MT in the gas industry stands for EMPTY and MB has the same hairdo as the main character in “The Ringer”. Anyone see that movie? Get serious MB, might look good in commercials but really?

    Finally I will only add what is definitely wrong with the Montreal ORGANIZATION… (Notice I did not say TEAM)… the Bell Centre will be SOLD OUT on Tuesday…. That is the problem… I thought Canadians in general had more sense than that…. for example…. if your politicians do squat do you keep voting for them? You can still be a fan without going to the game and it is a lot easier on your wallet.

  42. CJ says:

    What do Montreal, Detroit, LA and Chicago all have in common? They are all sending the most players to the Olympics. They also have 3, 5, 3 and 4 wins respectively over their past ten games, among the worst records in the entire league. Complete coincidence, maybe, but I wonder if there is not more to this Olympic break then we can appreciate.

    I’m not trying to excuse the team’s terrible play over the past two weeks, but I can’t help but wonder if there are different mandates for the Olympians.

    Food for thought.

  43. DipsyDoodler says:

    Mike Babcock is signed by the Red Wings through to the end of next season.

    It’s illegal to approach another team’s coach while they are still under contract, but that is presumably what Bergevin did with Stephen Waite last year.

    He’s the highest paid HC in the league at a rumoured $2M/year.

    • formerly known as the hc says:

      I am willing to bet that if Babcock is interested in coaching beyond this contract, Montreal would be one of the last organizations he would be interested in coaching with.

      • Captain aHab says:

        This. Montreal ain’t the glory place it once was. My guess is that Babcock will be re-signed in Detroit for serious coin. Why would they get rid of him anyway?

        Come to Montreal and be told that: “Mike, make sure you play enough francophones regardless of whether they play well or not…important demographic for us”. Yeah. Pass.

        Get ready for Gerard Laframboise-Tremblay as our next coach…he can’t coach but he can make GREAT excuses for losses in French.

        Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

    • habsguru says:

      the arrangement amongst teams is that head coaches and GM’s are off limits, but assistants are usually made available, with permission to entertain promotions with other teams.

      • DipsyDoodler says:

        Yes, but recall that Babcock refused to re-up with Anaheim and was signed by Detroit a couple of weeks later. It’s a fair bet he knew the Wings were giving him a job before he resigned from Anaheim, since he’d been part of their organization.

        • habsguru says:

          “tampering” is punishable by both draft picks and $$$, not saying his agent didn’t put it out there that he may test the open market, and had some off the record feedback, but the NHL takes it very serious. there was even a fine levied on a GM once for joking about another play that he would like to have.

  44. habs_54321 says:

    this slump began around the time the excuses started flying out left right and center “we are tired” “the refs” etc it slowly krept in a loser mentality again even when they were winning there were claims of being “tired”

    • wjc says:

      All losing teams have a losing mentality and when they win again it becomes a winning mentality. The season is long and they did look tired even Galagher did not have any jump last night.

      Physical and mental fatigue does contribute, if they could have gotten the first goal last night, but they had trouble getting the first shot. This is a sign that something is not right, even Washington came in on a 7 game losing streak.


  45. wjc says:

    Prediction: Habs get 6 out of the 8 points, more would be a bonus.
    65 points by next Sunday night.

    All will be well in Habland.


    • CJ says:

      I’d love to see them explode in Boston. Let’s lay a beating on the Bruins!

      • wjc says:

        I would settle for a hard fought overtime win.


        • CJ says:

          That works too. Win or lose I’ll be watching. I’m not naive, but if we could just get a win, we can get rolling. You’re only as good or bad as your last game. I firmly believe that a win would have the greatest effect on this team. Right now, they are playing not to lose, instead of playing to win.

    • TMan1969 says:

      Mentality is the key…mentally lose every game before they even play…

      “If I knew the answer to that I’d bet $10,000 on the game and retire from coaching.”
      —Montreal Canadiens coach Toe Blake after being asked if his team would win an upcoming game

  46. Haberoooo13 says:

    Quite the numbers for Habs last night: 6 goals, 36 Shots and 7 fighting majors…oh wait…Baby Habs

    Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

  47. Hey folks,

    I haven’t posted here in a while, but here’s my two cents.

    The team is at a combined 48% in the faceoff circle. Hard to establish possesion if you can’t win a draw.

    My choice to help solve it is Antoine Vermette. Always a consitent faceoff guy, not badly priced around 3.5 mil, can provide offense and has a full year left on his contract. Could give Plekanec a break on the tough minutes (I checked out the fancy stats) and oh yeah, he’s from Quebec..

    Now what does Bergevin package the other way? Phoenix is just out of a wildcard spot at the moment, so they would want something sufficient in return.


    Exploring the Habs history at Le Tir, et Le But! Follow me on Twitter

    • mushalain says:

      Are you serious? We have a team full of guys like Vermette. His best years are behind him like many of the vets we carry.

      • So enlighten me. What would you do? Sounds like you want to blow up the team again, based on your comment.

        Vermette is 31, yes but when was the last time the Habs had a clutch faceoff man? Plekanec is forced to fight the top centers in the league and barely hits 50%. Not long ago Desharnais was on the verge of being run out of town and he’s only 27.


        Exploring the Habs history at Le Tir, et Le But! Follow me on Twitter

    • wjc says:

      Who say’s he is available and the price may not be right. You can not pull a trade out of your ying yang, it does not work that way. It is a waste of time and energy.


    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Aren’t you glad you broke your silence!

      Aren’t you glad people whose ideas are all perfect and untouchable are present to slam your rare suggestions!!

      EVERYTHING on this site is speculative, everything. So if, in an ideal world, it were possible to find a team whose need for something which we’re prepared to let go matched OUR need for something like a good face-off guy, even an older one, then just identifying that scenario is as valid a starting-point for a conversation here as just about anything else that gets spouted on this site.

      From one who spouts much.

  48. Thomas Le Fan says:

    First losing and then not hiring Patrick Roy when we had a chance will continue to haunt us for a long while yet. Curse of the Bambino … er … Roybino anyone?

    Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

    • Larry Robinson. That is our curse. Spurning him instead of embracing him…

      I’m speechless! 20 years and counting…

      • wjc says:

        If you bellieve in curses, then put a curse on one of your enemies and tell me if it works. Ottawa zero Stanley cups, could be the curse of the politian, Vancouver zero Stanley cups, could be the curse of the Roger Nielson firing, Buffalo zero Stanley cups could be the curse of the Scotty Bowman firing……..you all can come with curses if you try, help me out.


    • Mark C says:

      What exactly has Roy done to prove the Habs missed out?

      • habs_54321 says:


        my thoughts as well what has he done.

      • Thomas Le Fan says:

        Oh I dunno. His young team has ten points more than ours in one less game for a start. Oh could you remind me of who was in net the last time we won a cup? I was sort of joking but get with the facts, at least. As for curses, wjc, who knows maybe it’s you and your oh so much wiser comments? Yeah that’s it. It’s the wjc curse.

        Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

  49. Mr. Biter says:

    I realise the Habs played 2 games back to back but does it not seem they get a lot of days off after bad games. I realise the NHLPA gives so many off days but you give off days after good performances not 2 crap games like the last two.

    Mr. Biter
    No Guts No Glory

  50. Stimpy007 says:

    Shane O’Brien on waivers. Small move but grab him! Put Cube and Murray on waivers. When the team is playing well Murray can blend in but man it is getting sickening watching him try and skate.

  51. CH Marshall says:

    Carey made SOME of the best saves I’ve ever seen this week, but all for nothing

    • Mr. Biter says:

      I think the one where they got stuck in the Ice protesting Global Warming and are still trapped there after ice breakers from 3 countries could not get to the ship because of too much ice.

      Mr. Biter
      No Guts No Glory

  52. mksness says:

    i think it’s time to give price a game off. He hasn’t looked great over the last few games and i think the concept of getting lit up game in and game out can wear a goalie out. Habs need him to be on his best to make the playoffs so i hope they rest him a bit. Budaj has done well in relief and while starting, so i don’t see the fear in giving him a few more games to keep price fresh

  53. Habsolut Monarchy says:

    skilled and speedy ?

    our small gyus are not fast
    our big guys have little grit
    combined with little skill overall as seen on the pp and 1 on 1 offensive moves

    PlayerSpeed Pass Shot Skill Size Grit Vision

    Pac + – + – + . .
    DD – . – . – . +
    Gally . . . . – + .

    Briere – . . . – – .
    Pleks + . . . . . .
    Gionta . – . – – . –

    Chucky . + . + + . +
    Eller . . – . + . .
    Bourque + . . . + . .

    Bournival + . . – . . –
    Prust – . – – . + –
    Moen – – – – + . –

  54. Captain aHab says:

    They should have gone bowling, or to Chez Paré.

    Me skull and crossbones arn’t the only thing I plan on raisin’ tonight.

  55. durocher says:

    Habs should be sellers at this point — trade our vets to contenders for assets that can help us down the line. MT and JJ should be fired at season’s end, if not sooner.

    1. TRADE or DO NOT RE-SIGN: Gio, Markov, Cube, Murray, Diaz, Parros
    2. TRADE: Gorges, DD
    3. TRADE or BUY-OUT: Bourque, Briere
    4. BRING UP: Tinordi, Pateryn

  56. HabinBurlington says:

    A coaching may not get this team back in the playoffs, but, is our present coach developing this team for the future? He needs to win now to protect his job, therefore decisions will be made for the short term.

    Normally I am against the “interim” coach, but perhaps the finish of this season is indeed the right scenario for an interim coach.

    The core many of us continue on about are young, they are the players we can’t lose mentally at this point. Be it the system they are playing, or just a complete lack of trust in each other and perhaps the coach, the environment presently appears poisoned.

    My thoughts on changing the coach now isn’t specifically to win today, but ensure success tomorrow.

  57. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    Still waiting for someone to post the Habs record with and without Chucky…can’t be good. When Emelin, the most physical D-man, went down, the team’s lack of physicality was exposed. It seems now that with the most talented forward going down, the team’s lack of scoring has been exposed. Suspect the Habs will ride out the storm up to the Olympic break. Who knows what will happen after the break if nothing improves. All I know is either MB makes a move to improve the team short term or start moving out vets for the future. Just do something other than commercials and suit shopping…

  58. mushalain says:

    Here’s an interesting stat.

    Carey Price 42 games played, has 2 assists.

    Rene Bourque 39 games played, has 1 assist.


  59. scarboro_habitant says:

    captain obvious here. it seems like the boys have stopped playing for coach therrien. they need to shake things up before someone pulls a patrick roy.

    • mksness says:

      actually i think they look flat and tired. The blocking shots day in and day out and them attempting to be a grinding team takes it’s toll and maybe more of a toll on our smaller players.

      when you usually only have one line clicking and rely on your goalie too much you’re going to hit a bad stretch here and there. last night was an example of nothign working.

  60. habs001 says:

    Maybe it is time to try Plecks as your number one offensive centre and put him with MaxPac and Gallagher…Give Eller the checking job and see if he can do that and once Galchenyuk is back make him your number 2 centre…

    • ooder says:

      Hahaha but poster boy dd. Don’t want to hurt his feelings. Its is not a coincidence that this tram finished last with him as our #1 center and is sucking again with him as the #1

  61. Claude Kane III says:

    If (big if, considering how the boys are playing recently) anyone one here is interested in going to the game against Tampa next Saturday, I have one extra ticket in either Section 323 or 333 (we have two separate pairs and there are only 3 going now). Face value for what I paid through the ticket vault, which was $90 or $105 depending on the section.

    That plan is that my two brothers and I are flying in on Thursday night, watching the Tampa and Jets games over the weekend and then heading to a bar to watch the Superbowl before crawling out to the airport Monday morning. We’ll be having a very early afternoon pint prior to the game on Saturday, so we could always meet up before the game for a pint and ticket exchange. Or we could meet on Friday under similar circumstances. I’ll put up my email for a little while and then take it down after a bit or as soon as someone says they want the ticket… macausland@gmail.com

    If it provides any sense to security, I’m not a newbie to the site even if I post pretty infrequently. Send me an email if interested in the ticket, or even just meeting up for pints with some western Habs fans over the weekend. Hopefully we’ll have some better hockey to watch by then!

    The goggles do nothing!

  62. mksness says:

    i’m all for getting rid of MT seeing how i never wanted him hired. However, i don’t think you can expect too much more from the players.

    Last night was a no show for everyone on this team. bad D, no offence and bad goaltending.

    What is a new coach going to do with this team? For the longest time when they were winning i said wow they didn’t deserve to be in that one, but they found a way to win. back then everyone said it was a sign of a good team. now everyone wants the team traded and fired.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      One thing they need to do is get back to basics. The players have no confidence in themselves and each other. They might not be great, but they are not as bad as what we have been seeing these last few weeks.

      • mksness says:

        they can start by staying out of the box. and then they can do this thing called shoot on net and go for rebounds

        • Mr. Biter says:

          Also stand in front of the opposing goalie which they did quire well in the loss to the Leafs. All 3 Habs goals because someone was in front of the net screening the goalie and or putting rebounds. B Gally rebound goal, Gionta rebound goal DD (I think) deflection.

          Mr. Biter
          No Guts No Glory

  63. stevieray says:

    Mr Molson …..how’s your cultural change going these days

  64. habs001 says:

    The Habs only hope is to score more pp goals and win most games 2-1 or 3-2 at best..This roster just does not have enough offensive talent to score that much more…

  65. PrimeTime says:

    I recall a couple of weeks ago while driving and listening to the Toronto sports radio stations during the Leafs losing streak and much of the same fan comments were being said as we read here. I would suggest during the Hawks slump fans had their complaints as well as they have in LA right now. As disappointing as the last couple of games have been, players do find ways to turn it around. They understand the game much better than the fans. But MB has to be evaluating the effectiveness of the coaching right now. If things don’t turn this week then it’s time for a new sheriff.

    “Fans are entitled to express their opinion, but most of the comments on talk radio and on The Gazette’s Hockey Inside/Out website ranged from the mildly uninformed to the outrageously stupid” – Pat Hickey.

    º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º

  66. Sportfan says:

    I’m sorry aside Carey they don’t deserve a rest.

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

  67. Wintercount says:

    This guy turned 72 last week.

    I done wrestled with an alligator, I done tussled with a whale, and cuffed lightning, thrown thunder in jail;
    Only last week, I murdered a rock, injured a stone, hospitalized a brick.
    I’m so mean I make medicine sick. — Rumble in the Jungle

    He stood alone against the mighty USA, not unlike Edward Snowdon today.

    The right stuff.

    • Thomas Le Fan says:

      May I just say …. huh? Unless Edward Snowboard can score for us who gives a flying finagle?

      Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

    • habfan01 says:

      So what does a traitor have to with the Habs? Are you insinuating one of them is a turncoat?

      • Clay says:

        Snowden took an oath to uphold the constitution, not the criminals in charge. He did just that.

        ☞ “The deepest sin of the human mind is to believe things without evidence” ~ Aldous Huxley ☜

  68. Steeltown Hab says:

    It’s sad that Therrien obviously needs to go, and things probably have to get even worse for Bergevin to do something. This team hasn’t looked good in over a month.

    Line combos, personnel decisions are just a complete joke and how we’re just continuing to screw around with the development of players who matter to facilitate these vets who are providing us nothing in the now is just braindead management.


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

  69. Danno says:

    Sucking sucks


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

  70. Tis Himself says:

    This just in: MB and MT have come to the conclusion that all the Habs need is a little more cowbell!

  71. Sebby says:

    Should have been a bag skate day

  72. HabsFansince49 says:

    Albert Einstein is alleged to have said that “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”. Therrien doesn’t get it. I am beginning to sense that Bergevin doesn’t get it as well.

  73. HabinBurlington says:

    Wow, Carey looks scared or perhaps shell shocked is more appropriate.

    • CJ says:

      Wow, he looks deflated!

    • JUST ME says:

      The picture does tell it as it is. Yesterday`s comment from Gionta after the game were also very clear. You could hear in his voice how so very frustrating things were and how helpless he felt.

      • CJ says:

        More telling was watching 24CH (yes I know, it’s an edited show), and the way in which PK and Gionta interacted. To summarize, PK was joking around and when he asked Gionta to join him, Gionta replied that he was 35. I know, likely much to do about nothing, but you wonder if there isn’t some friction there.

        Anyone else catch this? It was the scene following the Ottawa win when PK was talking about Price.

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