Habs, Isles proving experts wrong

The Gazette’s Pat Hickey writes that the Canadiens and New York Islanders have written much the same script this season. At the start of the campaign, many experts predicted they would finish out of the playoffs, well back in 14th or 15th place in the Eastern conference.

After 20 games, the Canadiens sit fourth in the East with 25 points and the Islanders are in sixth place, only three points behind Montreal.

"I don’t think they liked being picked where they were," head coach Guy Carbonneau said. "I know I didn’t like it and I wanted to prove you guys wrong, and they’re no different than we are. Every hockey player has a lot of pride. They saw that and I’m sure they approach every game with the idea of proving people wrong."

Read Hickey’s article here.

9 Comments

  1. 24 Cups says:

    Islanders really don’t look that good on paper. Ted Nolan must be doing a fantastic job of coaching (just like last year). It would appear that a lot of teams made a mistake over the past few years by not giving him a chance to coach.

  2. coutNY says:

    Edited… but I think Peter and Bri are truely hab fans… :)

  3. MathMan says:

    The thing about the Islanders… they have 45 GF and 45 GA. Having such a strong winning record despite being even on goals-for and goals-against is usually a sign of getting the bounces in the really close ones, and on pulling out one-goal games a lot. Winning a lot of one-goal games with a lukewarm offense and strong goaltending helps your standings, but everyone here knows all too well it’s not very sustainable long-term. It’s very much like the 06-07 Canadiens, in fact.

    They’ve got a great record, better than Montreal’s, but their schedule hasn’t really been as tough. Look who they’ve gotten half those wins against.

    Buffalo (13th) x2
    Devils (14th) x3
    Capitals (15th) x1 (and they account for one of the Caps’ six wins).

    Then the Rangers 3 times, and the Lightning and Penguins one each. They’ve lost a few big ones, being soundly blown out by Toronto and Carolina.

    It’ll be interesting to see the team behind the record. At first glance, the stats points to the possibility that their W-L might be a little inflated, so I’m eager to see on the ice if that’s the case or not.

    The Isles aren’t an offensive powerhouse, so if Montreal can get a few goals in, their odds are pretty good.

  4. cautiousoptimist says:

    Wow – that Burnside guy’s awful.

  5. coutNY says:

    Yet ESPN Burnside still leaves us out and gives the Ilses a “pot-shot” in his Quarterly review. The NHL wonders why US never will have any interest. Aways trying to promote the big market teams, that quite frankly stunk the first Q. People have watched them suck, yet he paints these bottom basement teams as having BIG THINGS to COME?

    Review the Quarter… Not the last game and try to use trend analysis it into the future.

    Here’s the Article~ Not one mention of the Habs…

    http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/columns/story?columnist=burnside_scott&id=3120224

    They have no clue that grass-root channels such as HABS I/O are where most NHL fans reside.

  6. J.T. says:

    Good. I want the Habs to be “Joe Who?” when the playoffs start. No one will expect anything of them and they’ll use that to their advantage. After all, “no one *expects* the Spanish Inquisition,” right?

  7. likehoy says:

    is that a real picture of family guy or did you edit it???

  8. coutNY says:

    Also that fact that NYI have had the least grueling schedule pace wise, in only playing 17 games where as most teams have played around 20.

    I wouldn’t say their record is much better than the Habs, if they went 1-1-1 the next 3 games they would only tie us in points at 20 games. They haven’t won back to back consecutive night games yet and they’re running into a sctech of them in the Nov and Dec months.

  9. RH says:

    For what it’s worth, the Habs are two points behind there pace of last year and scored two goals less. Does this make the Habs a better team than last season? I’ll wait until January is over to make my decision.


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