Habs players enjoying rest after series sweep

The Canadiens enjoyed their second straight day off Thursday following their first-round sweep of the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The Canadiens will play the winner of the Boston-Detroit series in the Eastern Conference semifinals. If that series goes the full seven games it won’t end until April 30, meaning the Habs could be in for a long break between games. The Bruins led that series 2-1 going into Game 4 Thursday night (8 p.m., TSN, RDS).

An NHL spokesman told The Canadian Press on Thursday that the Habs’ next series would not start early if the Boston-Detroit series goes only five games. The Canadiens could be looking at a 10- or 11-day break between games, depending on when all the first-round series wrap up.

“Personally, it’s good to have the time off,” Max Pacioretty told reporters after scoring the winning goal in Game 4 against the Lightning Tuesday night. “We had a lot of battles in this series and the time off will be good. We’re all professionals in this room and we’ll handle it right.”

Said Lars Eller: “Rest is a weapon right now. I don’t see it as a disadvantage. Boston or Detroit, it doesn’t matter. We’re going to have to beat one of them — or any other team — to keep advancing, so we’ll just sit back and see what happens.”

The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs reached Habs forward Brandon Prust Wednesday afternoon. He was still in bed resting.

“The next couple of days are about recovering,” Prust (photo above) told Stubbs. “I haven’t gotten out of bed too much, except to grab some food and watch some TV. I’ve slept the day away. No plans. I doubt we’ll move far from the bed today.”

Prust will be watching the Boston-Detroit series.

“We’re just watching those teams punish each other and hope that they continue to punish each other more,” he told Stubbs. “The rest now will be great for a lot of guys who have bumps and bruises.

“Rest is a positive and it can be a negative — you kind of lose a little momentum and that game-feel if you’re not playing for many days. But it’s our job in the days ahead to make sure we’re really focused in practice.”

The Canadiens’ mini-vacation will end Friday when they practise at 11 a.m. in Brossard. 

Meanwhile, the Canadiens announced Thursday afternoon that they have signed forwards Daniel Carr and Connor Crisp to NHL entry-level contracts.

Carr, who signed a two year deal, helped Union College win the NCAA championship this season, posting 22-28-50 totals and 28 penalty minutes in 39 games. Crisp, who signed a three-year deal, posted 28-27-55 totals and 120 penalty minutes with the OHL’s Sudbury Wolves. He then played seven games with the AHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs, scoring two goals. Carr is an undrafted 22-year-old, while Crisp, 20, was selected by the Canadiens in the third round (71st overall) at last year’s NHL entry draft.

(Photo by Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press)

Habs face long wait for next playoff round, montrealgazette.com

Five key factors to Canadiens’ sweep, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

Banged-up Habs can use the extra days rest, by Pat Hickey

Habs’ Prust enjoying some well-deserved R&R, by The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs

Habs’ Bouillon continues to beat odds, by Pat Hickey

Get a taste of Habs’ series sweep through Dale Weise’s mic, The Hockey News

Playoff blueprint, Canadiens.com

Habs’ first-round playoff stats, NHL.com

Canadiens sign forwards Carr, Crisp, hamiltonbulldogs.com

Lightning point to great season, not playoff sweep, montrealgazette.com

Lightning goalie Bishop to undergo wrist surgery, NHL.com

Opinion: Ron MacLean was wrong, by Jack Todd

Opinion: Ron MacLean was right, by Cam Cole

 

 

692 Comments

  1. ClutchNGrab says:

    I don’t care if we ended up losing the game, that goal gave me so much joy at the time, still does:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tji8vEySkF8

    • Hobie says:

      The goal was amazing! To say you don’t care we lost? That’s crazy. I was devastated! The joy of that goal lasted 20 minutes or half an hour.

  2. Timo says:

    Watching CH24 from the Islanders game debacle… Boods went all Rask on his stick in the room. It was pretty funny.

  3. Maritime Ronn says:

    Mr_MacDougall posted:

    Question.. Is Budaj the long term backup? Or will he be let go after next season? If so, is Tokarski the obvious choice, and should the team try to get him a specific number of starts next season, maybe 6-8?
    ——————–
    Under the radar screen 2 weeks ago was that Tokarski was signed to a new 2 year contact.

    The first year is a 2 way contract, while the 2nd year was a 1 way contract.

    You can see the details here:
    http://www.capgeek.com/player/924

    The NHL is a Cap driven League where every dollar should be important – and may end up being for the Habs moving forward.

    EX:
    Next year, Peter Budaj’s Cap Hit and Salary will be $1.4M.
    Tokarski’s Cap Hit would be $562K with a $550K Salary.

    While that may seem insignificant at first view, proper and great Cap Management is the hallmark of Cup winning teams.

    Without getting into details, if the Habs had not managed their Cap wisely this year, there would not have been any room for Vanek.

    Tokarski could be Price’s backup as early as next year.
    A little research would also show that he had a very similar Pre-NHL career as did Carey Price in regards to CHL and AHL – so he knows how to win.

    • krob1000 says:

      IT depends on how much room is needed….if the million or so savings is the difference between a key palyer staying or leaving or a signing then they go Tokarski. If not tehy would likely prefer to keep Budaj. So many scenarios depending on contract demands.

  4. habsfan0 says:

    Vanek had a so-so series against Tampa.
    But he’s been a Bruins killer in past playoffs.

  5. DipsyDoodler says:

    Marc-Andre Fleury.

    Look at the tying goal by Dubinsky again.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQGz9UoKOKo

    1. Fleury made the right play. He went back to stop the puck and allow the Pens to regain control. Journeyman Healy screamed blue murder “you gotta stay in your net” – oh really?

    2. The puck takes a freakish bounce. It didn’t just hop up, it shot off at a weird angle from the boards.

    3. Every Penguin on the ice was just gliding. Check out Stempniak #22 and the two defencemen. Fleury makes the right play but somehow he has two BJs bearing down on him, woth no Pen in sight.

    Now I know everyone loves to pick on this guy for some reason (Stock and Healy are losers so that’s the explanation right there), but I don’t think that goal is all his fault. It’s bad luck for them, good luck for Columbus (blind pass went to Dubinsky), and lazy D by some of the Pens.

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

    • The Jackal says:

      Yeah that goal was very unlucky, it was a bad bounce. But the OT goal was a bit weak.

      ______________________
      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • Cal says:

      With less than 2 minutes to go in a game when you are leading, the goalie should NEVER leave his net to play the puck behind it.
      Yes, the other Penguins floated, but that still doesn’t exempt Fleury from his brain cramp. He should know better.

    • Ozmodiar says:

      Now I know everyone loves to pick on this guy for some reason

      Below average goalie with cap hit of $5M, who tends to fall apart in the playoffs.

      • krob1000 says:

        He won a cup….it seems that beacuse our Habs team is doing so well rigth now noone can be critiqued…yet a goalie who goes to the Finlas tand wins a cup is able to be when he makes 5 million. The Penguins appear to have an injured Crosby (not skating at all hardly), a top dman in Letang who is not yet back to full strength, Malkin who does not appear to be 100 percent either, and when that is the core of the team and they are playing like they are there isn;t much of achance…especially when they eat roughly a third of your cap space.

    • rhino514 says:

      interesting point.
      It really does look like the Pens don´t have the same dedication as a team as say, for example, our habs.
      I´ve always believed we would beat them inthe playoffs, as we did once before, and am a bit glum that we don´t get a chance with the new playoff format.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Fleury had 1 hand on his stick and was nonchalant at best…big time mental mistake.

    • krob1000 says:

      Bylsma was ticked because it was off the glass….goalies aren’t supposed to vacate their net for rim arounds that are on the glass because they are too unpredictable. IF it were around the boards you go out…on the glass….stay in your net.

  6. Timo says:

    So much for Mike Babcock’s genius. That Detroit team looks terrible.

  7. Maritime Ronn says:

    So it will be Habs-Boston….just a question of time.

    In the next week or so, fans will be bombarded with every stat under the sun.
    The old stat guys will chime in with their 50 year old matchup, career, and other insignificant numbers, while the new stat guys will Corsi and Fenwick you to death with past stats….also insignificant.

    From here, you can take all that stuff and toss it in the trash bin.
    You can buy-in if you wish, but this series will be about the Here and Now.

    This possible long series, is ALL going to be about things than CANNOT be measured by a number on whatever stat sheet – so very sorry, Analytics people.

    For the Habs to win it will take:
    Heart – Courage – Mental toughness – Desire & Will – Overcoming pressure, nerves, and possible adversity – ALL of that for 5-6-7 games against the same opponent…

    The Habs players will also have to get out of their Comfort Zones – meaning doing things that spark and fire up a team.

    Scorers are expected to score, yet a big unexpected hit from one of them can fire up a Bench/Room and change a game/series.
    Energy guys are expected to provide energy, yet a big unexpected goal from one of them (Weise OT) can also change a game/series.
    These things prove to team mates the level of sacrifice and commitment to “Team,” and unites the guys.

    Make no mistake about it. The Bruins are a solid hockey team with great familiarity and have ‘been there-done that’ over the past 4 years…yet also make no mistake – These Habs can beat them.

    The question remains:
    Do the Habs have all of the above mentioned intangibles for a long series, and not just 1 game here and there?

    Soon, we shall find out exactly what GM Bergevin meant by:

    ” I believe you have players that get you IN the playoffs, and you have players that get you THROUGH the playoffs.”

    Habs fans will find out soon enough who the real “Character” guys are, and who are the Pretenders.
    There is NO place to hide in the playoffs…

    • shiram says:

      Price has to be a difference make instead of just being good.
      Rask has had issues when facing the Habs recently, but I would not think it will hold in the playoffs.

    • frontenac1 says:

      Ya hit the Nail square on the head Ronn! Saludos!

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      I didn’t really take the cap hit into consideration.. Was just raising a topic for the sake of it. To take it a step further, if $1m is saved from Budaj “moving” (I actually like Budaj) the Habs total goaltending cap hit is reduced from 8 million to 7… A 12.5% reduction with very little “perceived” drop off in skill.

      Almost a must make move.

      ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  8. Mr_MacDougall says:

    @Kooch

    I like your assessment of the value of Murray on the PK for controlling Chara. This could definitely help once Boston gets sustained pressure, so starting him on the PK would be desired.. How is his play defending the zone entry? It seems Weaver, Gorges, Markov, and Emelin are all good at this.. Is it a bit of give and take? Or is Murray also solid on the zone entry plays on PK?

    ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Just my opinion but Murray is solid all round on the PK including entering the zone. Weaver would be a good pairing with him and the cube would be the one I would have sitting out.

      Or even having Gorges paired with Murray on the PK

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        Thanks for the response. Given what you said about Chara being a key to the B’s PP and Murray’s ability to nullify him, and given that there isn’t much of a drop off (if any) with Murray vs Cube on the rush, I’d go with Murray. We know the importance of Special Teams is the playoffs, if Murray enhances special teams play than he should be inserted.

        I wouldn’t even think about Tinordi. He didn’t appear ready for regular season play, let alone playoffs. I like Tinordi moving forward, but it’s about winning now, and he’s behind Cube, Murray and Weaver IMO.

        ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  9. Sportfan says:

    Rask. Bishop, Varlamov are the three finalists for the Vezina.
    Seen people around facebook and other places mad that Price isn’t there.

    Thoughts?

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

    • shiram says:

      Could have been in there in Bishop’s place, but it’s not a big deal to me.
      The 3 nominees are worthy of their nomination.

    • Timo says:

      Pffft. I voted for Bouillon.

    • Phil C says:

      Hard to argue with those choices. Price’s stats aren’t quite good enough. 

    • habs_54321 says:

      im ok with it he probably finished around 4th in voting which is not too shabby and probably about right, he doesnt need the extra attention of going too award ceremonies just focus on having a good playoffs and proving the season wasnt a fluke

    • TommyB says:

      Hmmmm….not enough French GMs in the league?

    • Slackman says:

      He did win a gold medal. I thought he was for sure gonna get a nom based on that alone

      “When the going get’s weird, the weird turn pro”

    • AliHaba says:

      My preference is for Price to win the Conn Smythe.

    • Habilis says:

      I think Price gets the nod over Bishop if he doesn’t miss that chunk of games post-Olympics.

      Regardless, those 3 guys had crazy numbers. All deserving.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Posted below…There should not be a surprise.

      While Carey Price has had an excellent season, 3 other goaltenders have also been outstanding during the past season:
      Rask – Bishop – Varlamov.

      While Rask looks as though he will be a lock for the Trophy win, it will be interesting to see who the General Managers ( not the hockey writers) choose as the 2 other finalists.

      Most on HIO would have Price in the top 3, yet considering the team records of Bishop and Varlamov, along with their NHL top overall individual stats, it would also be difficult to leave them out as finalists.

  10. Colombiahabs says:

    Anyone paying attention to this NY Philly series? Also wouldn’t count out Crosby quite yet.

  11. Mr_MacDougall says:

    Question.. Is Budaj the long term backup? Or will he be let go after next season? If so, is Tokarski the obvious choice, and should the team try to get him a specific number of starts next season, maybe 6-8?

    Grasping at straws here for an interesting topic.. But c’mon, it’s. 10 day break..

    ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

    • Cal says:

      Budaj has 1 year left and Tokarski has 2 on his contract.
      If Tokarski keeps doing what he’s doing, he will be a lock for the backup role.
      10 loooooooooooong days.

    • JUST ME says:

      Would keep Budaj cause we need him and he has done the job.
      If Carey or Budaj end up on the injured list then Tokarski becomes precious.
      But also one must see the situation from the other angle. Zac Fucale is the future chosen one but is far from being ready and in time will need role models like Tokarski and Price and Budaj to grow in the mold of the organization.

      I liked what i saw of Tokarski but we are talking about what ? Two games? Let`s not make decisions we would regret and give him time as much as take our time.

    • shiram says:

      Budaj gets next year as the de facto backup, and Tokarski will be starter in Hamilton, which will be a big evaluation year for him, as if he steps it up he could be the backup in MTL the year after that.
      Fuccale is still years away.

  12. rljmartin says:

    On the lighter side, maybe Lucic is setting himself up for a career after hockey with Depends. If you have not seen this, check it out:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZSHNq79o-gM

    Have a nice day HIO followers….. It’s Friday!!!!!!!

  13. icemachine says:

    Anyone else trying for the Mastercard Presale tickets today? Waiting room opens at 11:30

  14. ClutchNGrab says:

    Bloomberg Businessweek’s Smartest Spenders in Sports 2014
    # 1 – Chicago Blackhawks
    # 2 – St Louis Cardinals
    # 3 – Boston Bruins

    # 67 – Montreal Canadiens
    # 105 – Toronto Maple Leafs
    # 122 – Chicago Cubs (last place)

    Our ranking of all 122 franchises in the NFL, NBA, NHL, and MLB rates teams based on how much they spent in player payroll for every win during the last five seasons. Each team is compared against the average price per win in its league to produce a score we call the efficiency index. The less a team spends compared with its peers, the lower its score. Playoff victories and championships get extra weight. Payroll data come from the best available published sources.*

    Playoff wins count for 10 percent of a season (e.g., 16.2 wins in baseball); Wild Card wins get half credit.

    Championships count for 50 percent of a season (81 wins in baseball).
    http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2014-04-24/smartest-spenders-in-sports-2014

  15. Hobie says:

    @shiram and Kooch

    I’m GUESSING that Murray will be in and Bouillon will be out. I also think Moen will replace Bournival if he’s healthy.

    I think the 4th line will be Moen-Briere-Weise.

    Again…it’s my best guess.

    If Galchenyuk is good to go…hmmm.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      I agree with you Hobie. I like what Bournival brings but we need the extra PK ability as well as toughness. Moen isn’t exactly slow either.

      Who really knows though with MT.

      Sadly, I don’t think Chucky will be ready just yet

      • Timo says:

        Isn’t Bournival routinely deployed on PK? Also, I think he is fairly physical… at the very least he always finishes a check as opposed to just skating by the opponent. I think if Prust isn’t 100% he should sit. He didn’t bring much during the TB series.

        • Kooch7800 says:

          Bournival has been on the PK but Moen has more experience.

          I agree Prust looked rusty in the first round against tampa. He will need to step up his game next round as it will be physical and we will need him out there. I think when Prust is playing well he is a better skill set than Moen. He hasn’t shown that much this year though

    • shiram says:

      I can see Murray, I’m not so sure Moen will be an upgrade on Bournival.
      Especially seeing as he’s coming back from an injury and Bournival has done a great job so far.

      • Hobie says:

        It’s a very tough call on Bournival and Moen. Is Moen as much of an asset as Bournival at both ends of the ice? Is the toughness Moen possess (I’d like to see more) put him a head of Bournival. Plus his leadership?

        Therrien could believe Moen will have something to prove after his concussion? I’d love to see Moen have another shot at Miller, not at the end of a shift either.

        Again, very tough call.

        • shiram says:

          Yup, and we don’t know how Moen looks in practice either.
          I like Moen, I just wonder if he’ll be up to it, to play the style they had going on, Weisse and Brière are quite fast.

          I have to say though, I think the team is full of leadership already, you got vets like Markov, Bouillon, Brière, Gio, Pleky, Gorges and some of the young guys are definitely stepping it up like Max.
          All in all, a great balance of young players and seasoned vets.

          • Hobie says:

            I think TB was a rare example of a soft playoff team, aside from a couple of players on their defence. Callahan was a sleep up front too!

            The big question is weather that speed the Canadiens displayed in the TB series will be as effective against Boston. Were the Habs players finding extra time and space because TB was small and passive? Are the Habs going to be able to do that same thing against Boston? Or will The Bruins take them down a notch by clogging things up and slamming them into the boards?

            It’s a possibility that without Moen, Murray and maybe Tinordi in the lineup we suffer the same fate as the Lightening did against us? The Bruins could walk allover us. Is it possible that the extra bulk and toughness is more beneficial than that little bit of extra speed? it’s a tough call!

          • shiram says:

            Good thing the coaching staff’s got plenty of time and games of the Bruins to analyze beforehand.
            I’ll defer to them for now, and reserve judgement untill after the first game.
            I mean, Detroit could still win…

        • Mr_MacDougall says:

          I’d shut Moen down for the season regardless of what doctors say. Another fight could end his career at this point…

          ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

          • Hobie says:

            What would you do with Backes? Seabrook has had a bunch of them as well? Crosby has had as many as Moen as well, he should probably retire too. Another hit could end their careers?

    • Timo says:

      I don’t think. Therrien will ride the Bouillon train until it can run no more.

  16. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Why is it that a 2 goal lead is the worst lead in hockey?

    • Kooch7800 says:

      lol please see columbus vs the Pens. All about momentum.

      if you give up one goal the momentum shifts to the team who just scored as their confidence is high. The team defending the lead has to switch to really focusing on defensive assignments and less on scoring another goal.

    • krob1000 says:

      It isn’t in reality but if you want to know the rationale is that at 2-0 teams sometimes take their foot off the pedal or get overconfident. While some debate the existence of momentum I have played on over 100 sports teams I am a 100 percent believer in it. The theory goes that if the team that is up takes their foot off it is very hard to reingage in a fast paced sport. The team down makes it 2-1…they all of the sudden get some confidence and realize they are one shot down, the other team still has a lead and is trying to get their intensity back, then if the games goes 2-2…the one team is on a high and the other on an extreme low. There are always exceptions and not everyone is the same emotionally and a bounce or great effort can overcome things but at that point the tide of the game has completely turned. Typically coaches are upset, players are upset, some get angry, get foolish,etc…..it is just human nature. There is a reason people get teary eyed in movies, the psychological part of the game very much impacts outcomes as a general rule. Reality is a one goal lead is obvisouly the worse lead…but giving up a two goal one can be very, very bad emotionally as it is the dramatic swing of momentum and emotion. If players were robots it would have less of an impact but they are not so things like weak calls, missed calls, blown leads, weak goals, inspring figths or shot blocks, great plays very much pyschologically impact others and in a game as fast paced and intelligence oriented as hockey it is impactful.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        The 6 run lead must be comparable in slopitch softball, co-ed.. Last summer lost two finals in the last inning.. The 6 run lead… Grrrrr

        ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

        • krob1000 says:

          lol…late inning slo pitches collapses have a direct correlation with the alcohol consumption…however, they seem to not not care for some strange reason.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      It isn’t . It’s a running joke.

      —–
      Moving. Forward.

      • Luke says:

        I think there is some validity to the comment, but I agree, for the most part it is a joke.

        2 goals seems like a decent cushion to the team with the lead, but close enough to the team trailing that it doesn’t demoralize them.

  17. Chuck Kept Calm and Carey'd On says:

    Before game 1 against Boston, Emelin should write out a $5000 check to the NHL and stick it in his hockey pants. At the first opportunity, give Lucic’s peas a stick ride, pull out the cheque, and let it float down to the ice.

    X X X X 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

  18. shiram says:

    Bishop, Varlamov and Rask named finalists for Vezina Trophy

  19. Luke says:

    No Price. (Rask, Bishop, Varlmalov).
    Not surprised.
    Can’t argue that the 3 nominated aren’t worthy, could argue that Price is up there with them. Probably #4 on the list.

  20. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Not over til it’s over but it looks like a meeting with those ugly Bruins which should be a great matchup considering the history between both clubs. My only hope, knowing the tendencies of the Bruins, is for the refs and the league to keep their eyes wide open & hopefully eliminate any garbage antics by the likes of Lucic & company. We play our game, we take care of those guys.

  21. boing007 says:

    Habs have to set the tone in the first game. Otherwise the Bruins will get too confident for the second game.
    Emelin has to knock a few players on their bums.

    Richard R

    • Chuck Kept Calm and Carey'd On says:

      Their ‘tone’ should be st skate hard, forecheck them into the ice, and claim victory. Play your game, and the Bruins will be thrown off theirs.

      X X X X 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

  22. Colombiahabs says:

    Kind of Crazy to have 8 players under 6ft and 5 at 6ft nothing but at least now we are gritty!

  23. Loop_Garoo says:

    I posted this further down about the Mclean debate, in response to another post, but decided to put it up here as well. Hopefully my final comment on this overblown issue.

    What I have a problem with is the rage that some are showing, and with Mclean being called racist, bigot etc. I am not, and have never been a Mclean fan, and what he said was misguided, but to state publicly ( and this is a public forum, accessed by hundreds of people, plus all the facebook posts, tweets etc) that he is a racist because of this statement is a far bigger moral and ethical failure than what Mclean originally said. There are certain things you just don’t say about people without hard evidence, and a lot of those things were said about Mclean.

  24. Cal says:

    A little Carly Simon while we wait.
    Thanks for the inspiration, Stanley Cup or Bust.

  25. Stanley Cup or Bust ! says:

    To get the PP going I suggest dressing Murray and Tinordi.
    Tell to go to the net and stay there thereby attracting Chara.
    The Great wall of Montreal.
    With DD skating around feeding the points Markov and Subban.

    • shiram says:

      I’d be tempted to separate Max and Vanek, those 2 might just be too flahsy for their own good on a same line.
      Max/DD/Bourque could be a good first pp line, if Bourque keeps the same form as the first series.
      Vanek/Pleks/Gally-Gio for a second line is balanced.

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      prune juice sometimes helps to get the pp going

  26. Hobie says:

    So honestly…

    I claim to know my s*&t but can second guess myself on occasion. At the beginning of the year if you would have told me I’d actually like Desharnais and Briere I’d probably run and puke off a balcony right now.

    So, this brings me to the Habs bottom paring on defence. Who plays, who sits and why? Do we leave things the way they are and keep both Weaver and Bouillon in? Do we sit one and bring either Murray or Tinordi in? Both?

    Are Murray and Tinordi mobile and quick enough to get the puck out of the zone and not cause a problem? Are they too slow? Is that whole situation way overblown anyways? What’s the story?

    This is assuming we play Boston.

    • shiram says:

      I think they’ll try Cube/Weaver in the first game, and see how they work out.
      I could be wrong, but I just feel the coaching staff will keep with it’s winning lineup.

      That said, if there’s a loss and that pairing is identified as a weakness, well I think Murray might draw back in for Bouillon.

      • Kooch7800 says:

        I think Murray has to be in first game to try and move Chara out of the crease on the PK and the Cube has to sit. Boston’s PP is doing quite well so don’t be surprised if moen draws in either

        • shiram says:

          Moen replaces who though?
          The only one I could see is Prust, but if the rest he’s getting is getting back close to 100%, he might still be better than Moen.
          Moen might be able to play, but maybe not a 100%.

          • Kooch7800 says:

            Sadly it could be someone like Bournival out. Boston plays a much different style than Tampa and it will require a tweaked line up. Murray to me is a must for the PK cause Chara has been causing havoc and it is working against Detroit who doesn’t have an answer for him. Murray is a beast.

            Moen may not get in the first game but if they get some PP success he will be back in.

            Again, this is just my opinion and I have not been able to predict what MT has done all season so take it with a large grain of salt

          • shiram says:

            There’s something to be said about playing our style instead of trying to beat them at their own game though.

          • Kooch7800 says:

            100% agree. We just have to be able to defend Chara on the PP and Murray is the perfect guy to do it and they are not a fast team so they can’t expose is cement like foot speed.

            The habs will only win if they use their speed game but I still think some strategies will need to be altered especially for special teams

    • punkster says:

      Good for you Hobie.

      I know the conventional wisdom would be to fight fire with fire, match size with size, do what everyone expects and try to match the br00nz toughness right from the start. Then, if that doesn’t work we can always go back to be a speedy, puck moving team and try to beat them with speed.

      My view is to stick with the line up that beat the Bolts to start, ramp up the annoyance factor provided by shit disturbers like Gally, Weezy, and PK, and draw the inevitable penalties by putting the likes of Chara, Lucic, Thronton and others off their game. Power play opportunities = shots = higher potential for goals. (assuming the PP gets its collective act together)…AND all the while use our superior speed and rolling 4 scoring threat lines.

      Edit…the best defence is always a good offence.

      Release the Subbang!!!

  27. Old Bald Bird says:

    Although I have posted several pessimistic (but realistic IMO) opinions below about our chances with Boston, it seems that we have one thing going for us compared to the Wings. They don’t look fast. Maybe the hitting has just slowed them down and maybe it will have the same effect on us. Or did anybody else observe that? The game just seemed on the slow side to me, at least compared to what I think I have been seeing against TB.

  28. Stanley Cup or Bust ! says:

    Daniel Briere (1%, 40 Votes)
    Thomas Vanek (0%, 14 Votes)
    Max Pacioretty (1%, 12 Votes)

    Is this what happens when hamster’s do math ?

  29. Timo says:

    Michael Therrien for 5 more years?! YES!!! Do it Bergevin!!! Do it!!!

  30. Slim Pete says:

    This made me laugh. I know it’s late but it’s from a Lightning eulogy roast.

    “Whether old and useless or young and useless, every Tampa defenseman came together to leave Lindback hung out to dry as much as possible. Apparently they didn’t realize that, much like the dancers at Chez Parée, you can make contact with the Montreal forwards.”

    https://ca.sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nhl-puck-daddy/eulogy–remembering-the-2013-14-tampa-bay-lightning-055353595.html#more-id

  31. jimmy shaker says:

    Just read on stubbies twitter that the second round won’t begin until all the first round series are finished! OUCH! That’s a very long time in between games for the boys!

    Shaker out!

    • ffenliv says:

      That’s how it’s been for a number of years now. Sucks, though, when you sweep a round. As Habs fans, we haven’t had to deal with this long layoff between rounds for a while.

      Hec, last time we won a couple rounds in the post-season, they team had about 8 seconds between match-ups.

  32. rljmartin says:

    After watching almost all playoff games so far, do not expect referees to get much better. As a player, it must be seriously frustrating because they do not know what to expect except for high-sticking and puck over the glass, that is what gets called consistently, nothing else. Have seen a player on his knees get rammed into the boards…. all ok.

    Boston game last night was the same, just look at Chara’s amazing dive, basically got knocked over by wind and that penalty call against Detroit had a serious effect on the games outcome.

    Habs must dress Murray against Boston or they will really get whacked and roughed up in their own end like never before and that is Boston’s strength. That is what feeds their game.

    • frontenac1 says:

      Agreed amigo. Crankshaft had his best games against Boston. I would put Whitey and Parros in too. Just like before. Bring it on! Saludos!

      • shiram says:

        Playing Parros would be akin to giving Boston a powerplay, he’s way past his due date sadly.
        I could see an argument for White and Murray though.
        Still I think Therrien will keep his lineup mostly intact.

      • Kooch7800 says:

        I think Boston will bring out the best in Emelin as well. I don’t think they should dress Parros unless things get crazy and they want to send a message.

        Murray is a for sure as he will clear Chara out on the PK and that is a must for Carey and neither the cube or Weaver can do that. I would have Murray and Weaver together as the bottom pairing D

  33. Donkey Hoat says:

    Wings are a great team, but I don’t think they have the horses to beat Boston; shame that the thugs will likely prevail.

  34. L Elle says:

    Looks like we’re on a collision course straight for Boston, somewhat like the Titanic. But, in this case, we are the iceberg. ;)

    I’ve loved to hate the Bruins since I was a little kid, but since I’m more “mature” now, I would much rather watch “real” hockey. if I never saw those pukey faces like the Rat, and the man sewn from 2 humans ever again, it would be no big loss.

    Go Detroit! (but only for this series)

    • Cal says:

      “we are the iceberg”
      Just classic! :lol:

    • JUST ME says:

      Good comment ! I think the feeling must be the same for most of us and this season the difference in hockey style is more than obvious cause once we deal with the Bruins then it`s back to fast and skilled hockey.
      In some way the Habs have always been there to prove the rest of the league wrong like when we had to deal with the broad street bullies back in the days. It kind of feels the same way but this time we have The Bruins ,the CBC,TSN and the ROC to wake up !

      No problem, so far this season the bigger the challenge the better the Habs !

  35. Cal says:

    A Repost from Sunday night:
    Sunday, April 20, 2014, 7:40PM- Montreal- corner of Ste-Catherine and Lambert-Closse.
    A man very much resembling Ellwood Blues, black suit, hat and sunglasses, too, moves furtively from the old building that was the Montreal Forum. His right wrist is handcuffed to a briefcase, making him appear rather odd and yet, familiar. He sets off due east as the sun drops behind him. He casts a giant shadow as he increases his foot speed.
    Despite being held up by security (the handcuffs he explained away as being sure his valuable autographed Guy Lafleur Album was secure. The guards agreed.), Ellwood makes his way slowly to the nosebleeds. His seat is empty but he remains standing in the aisle. It is the 2nd period and the Lightning have tied the game and are pressing for another. The cuffs are off and the briefcase is open, but only a little. Ellwood looks pissed and is arguing at his briefcase!
    “Look, Howie, you’ve got to come out! It’s been 21 years! They need you!”
    A muffled voice answers from within the briefcase, “Look, I’ve already told everybody else no. It’s not my fault they didn’t name the new place “Forum”, is it? They blew it! There’s no connection between my home and this…place.”
    Ellwood takes off his glasses and stares meaningfully into the briefcase. “But, the fans, Howie… they need you. Look.” Ellwood slips his hand into the case and a pair of eyes look out onto the ice.
    At that moment, the puck is deflecting off of Price’s pad and is heading in to the net. The pair of eyes look back at Ellwood. “You bastard. Go back and get the others. I can’t do this alone.”
    Ellwood’s smile lights up the Bell Center. On the ice below, the whistle has been blown and a ref is frantically waving off a goal.

    The Forum Ghosts are back!

  36. No one outside of we fans is talking about the Canadiens, I like that. Nothing to talk about, and that’s a good thing too.

    Goooooooooooooood Mooooooooooooorning Troops, line up, Inspection Time!

    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    http://www.Sholi2000.com
    A Little fun during the Intermission
    Milan Lucic Has a Severe Problem

    • jimmy shaker says:

      Well I’m not sure for the rest of Canada, but the HNIC (save for Freidman) really hate the fact the habs are where they are. They love to bash, and mention calls, bounces, back up goalies, anthem singers, but sour grapes is sour grapes. These guys are out of jobs pretty soon, and their true blue and white colours are really coming to the forefront. OH well! At least TSN is a little bit more diplomatic, a little bit! Thank the good Lord for RDS!

      Shaker out!

    • boing007 says:

      Read TSN’s comments page. After a Habs game the comments go on for 20 pages or more. The other teams? One page, sometimes two.

      Richard R

  37. habsfan0 says:

    How close is Galchenyuk to returning?

    • jimmy shaker says:

      I read somewhere…….(just typed in galchenyuk injury, and it popped up) that he won’t even be ready for this series because of how fast montreal finished and potentially the bruins winning in 5 over the wings. It said he needed 4 to 6 weeks to recover, and he’s only around the 4 week time frame at the moment. I could be wrong though, wasn’t really set in stone in the article.

      Shaker out!

  38. jimmy shaker says:

    So probably a Monday or Tuesday start in Boston….5 or 6 days off between series. Ideally, I think 4 days is perfect but I digress. Not sure how Moen or White get in. Danny B is the only logical move, but he was brought here for this reason, to do the business in the dance. And when given the opportunity, he’s played very well for MT. Barring injuries, I don’t know how these two very good 4th liners draw in. A good problem to have I guess for MT. Can’t wait to here thad puke Edwards choke all over his words when the habs skin his little bears. PLEASE betterman and NHL….NO AFTERNOON GAMES! I know you have to please jacobs, sea bass and co, but try not to be to blatant in your brown nosing of the cubs!

    Shaker out!

  39. boing007 says:

    Wings are soff.

    Richard R

  40. Stanley Cup or Bust ! says:

    Everybody needs to send some Love to the Wings.
    Everybody needs to send some malevolent thoughts to the bruins.

  41. Yup, Boston is already getting daddy Campbell and Jacobs to cover their dirt. I’m reading and hearing it all over again, neanderthal intolerant comments from boobs like Felger and Mazz in Boston who make Edwards sound like Mother Theresa. Already getting the cement head Baahstan fans riled-up against Montreals diving.

    It amazes me that anyone, even a Baahstan fan can’t see the extent to which the rat Maachann, queen Lucy, Charenstein and others on that filthy team practice all of what they whine about. It’s going to be a hard series, especially with the favoritism and thrown away whistles when we want to skate and Baahstan wants to rape us. Shame, I like hockey, but Beetman prefers WWE!

    I’m speechless! 20 years and counting…

  42. adamkennelly says:

    I much prefer playing the Bruins for entertainment value. I think Habs can beat them – will be tough but doable. I’d rather risk loosing to the Bruins and having a fun, heated, contested series than play the Redwings – in boring ass games where Habs have a slightly better chance (on paper) of beating them. plus – beating the Bruins would be epic.

  43. boing007 says:

    A lot of clutching and grabbing not called in last night Bruins Wings game. After whistle punches in the face, etc. Nothing called. Not good.

    Richard R

  44. GoldenSeal says:

    DISASTER, DISASTER, DISASTER! Philippe Cantin of LaPresse says the Habs should resign MT for at least 5 years…..AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!

    Moving to Chicago.

  45. Phil C says:

    The Habs won their season series against the Bruins, so they match up well against them for some reason. I think their speed can really exploit some of their D, especially the mutant.

    On top of that, the Habs really improved a lot at the deadline, while the Bruins only picked up a depth defensemen. The Habs will also be more rested and probably healthier. So overall, the Habs have a very good chance to beat the Bruins, which is all you can ask for. If they are underdogs, it’s not by much.

    • Paz says:

      If the Habs beat the Bruins Therrien will deserve a 3 or 4 year extension and I will be the first one to suggest it here.

      Habs knock the Bruins out = fantastic accomplishment and a great sesson

    • CJ says:

      Good morning Phil.

      IMO, outside of this fan base, I am quite certain that Montreal will be regarded as an underdog, probably with very few, if any, pundits giving them a chance in this series. Again, IMO, this could work to our advantage. Boston is an excellent team, probably the best in the league right now. We are significantly better than last season, however we are still a notch below Boston.

      Of course, none of that matters when the puck drops. I am simply trying to be as unbiased in my opinions as possible.

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      Unfortunately, the Bruins are built perfectly for their style and are a team in their prime, so I don’t see good things here. I think the Habs will put up a good fight in each game but will win few.

  46. Psycho29 says:

    Good Morning fellow Hab fans!

    As I posted last night, great segment on TSN690 with Ray Ferraro, interesting take on the NHL discipline dept. When asked if there is a problem, he says “how else do you explain Lucic not being suspended”

    Worth a listen, I hope the link works:

    http://t.co/rvN3c2fPJa

  47. Mr_MacDougall says:

    I really don’t think Patrice Bergeron should be playing against the Habs in Montreal. Like, how will he control his bias, better just to sit him to reduce the temptation of sabotage.

    ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  48. ths says:

    What I really noticed about the Bs today is the young D they have brought in to the mix. Habs should have Tinordi and Beaulieu ready to go at drop of hat

    Ooh Aah Habs on the war path

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Morning ths. Do you think its too late for that this season? One of my regrets (probably only one) is the lack of playing time given Tinordi and Beaulieu this season. The Bruins utilized their young defenseman in a way I had hoped Therrien would have utilized our big two. To give them quality minutes now, in the middle of a playoff run might be scary, don’t ya think?

      • CJ says:

        Good morning Jim. I agree with your post completely. If there is one constructive criticism of Therien and/or the management team, it’s having gone almost exclusively with a veteran team. IMO, I think one of Pateryn, Tinordi or Beaulieu should have been a permanent fixture on the team all season.

        I agree, it is very hard to integrate a player at this point in the season. Sure, Boston did it with Torey Krug last season (one regular season game before the playoffs started), but I don’t know that this is the same setting (by this I mean it is easier if you have a player like Chara who can play with Dougie Hamilton).

        It leaves me somewhat torn. I don’t think we can beat the Bruins with Weaver and Bouillion as the 5/6, unless we can effectively reduce their ice time to 10 minutes a game or less. However, I also don’t know if we can beat the Bruins while carrying the risk associated with a young player (Tinordi, Pateryn or Beaulieu). Ultimately, it could be our demise.

        • Old Bald Bird says:

          I was surprised when at least one of them wasn’t integrated more fully this year. Then one more next year etc. I think this may have been shortsighted.

      • Cal says:

        Hey Jim, I don’t think MT believes in young D as much as other head coaches. I can’t say I blame him as they get caught making big mistakes that cost goals and games. Tinordi is a great physical asset to have, as long as the Habs don’t begin every game down 1-0 because of yet another mistake. Beaulieu has good offensive gifts, but has no clue where to be in his own zone.
        The good thing is time is on their side. They both will get better in the next couple seasons.

        • Paz says:

          I think Beaulieu showed much better than your assessment when he was called up this year.

          And, put a heavy forecheck on Bouillon and Weaver and we will surely see mistakes.

          But I agree with your assessment of Therrien, he doesn’t trust young dmen.

        • CJ says:

          I partially agree that Therien does not trust his young players. I say this because he does have a great deal of trust in players like Galley and Eller. I think every player is evaluated, fairly or unfairly, and is up to us to debate.

          Where I disagree, respectfully, with your comments is the notion that Tinordi and Beaulieu are defensive liabilities. Sure, it is fair to say that both have had defensive breakdowns, but the same can be said of any player on this team. I had a similar conversation a couple of weeks ago reviewing the giveaways that Tinordi made that cost us goals. Assuming that he himself was the sole player responsible (so removing all responsibility from the goaltender and forwards), my count has him responsible for 4 goals against (Phoenix, Columbus, Boston, Detroit). I personally don’t think the Detroit goal was on Tinordi, but I will add it in for arguments sake.

          Again, I am not suggesting that we make a change at this point, however I am trying to identify what I believe to be a case of perception versus reality. Going forward, our team will be better once Tinordi and Beaulieu are part of our top six. I am fairly certain that this graduation will begin next season, however, if injuries arise, we might see a change as soon as this post season.

    • Phil C says:

      IMO, Tinordi is not ready. Close, but not ready. His puck handling is not at an NHL level yet. You can tell at times that he is thinking the right thing, but his puck handling lets him down under pressure. Fortunately, that is something that can be fixed, so he will be an NHL player sooner than later.

      Beaulieu has clearly not impressed the Habs brass. While he looked good playing with the Habs, his team worst -19 in Hamilton really stands out. If a team is going to preach the importance of character and have it as a organizational value, they need to stand by it. If there are injuries though, it would not surprise me to see Beaulieu draw into the line-up, depending on who gets hurt.

      • Paz says:

        Maybe it’s time to start judging Beaulieu on how he plays in the NHL?

        Even Habs brass stated publicly this year that Beaulieu has the type of skill which is more effective at the NHL level than the AHL level.

        My opinion. Beaulieu proved he could play excellent hockey at the NHL level, and the Habs bass knows it. It was obvious to everyone.

        But Therrien wants to go with veteran dmen, and as long as the team keeps winning no one is going to change his mind, or even try.

      • boing007 says:

        Beaulieu’s -19 was with a pretty crummy team.

        Richard R

  49. CJ says:

    Good morning folks.

    We are locked and loaded, heading directly towards a major collision in the North End of Boston. I suppose it is only fitting. The new playoff format will only help to ensure that we play the Bruins with even greater frequency going forward. Senators aside, there is no other team in hockey whom I would rather beat than the Boston Bruins

    Checking emotions at the door, realistically, how do we match up?

    IMO, Rask is an elite goaltender, arguably the best in the world right now. We talk about Gomez for Ryan Mc****gh, can you imagine how Toronto must feel having swapped Rask for Andrew Raycroft? Price, until he steps up in the playoffs is still a notch below. Again, pucks just seem to find a way to get past him. I am hoping that this is the series where Carey lays everything to rest and plays the dominant style that many believe he is capable of playing in the postseason. That said, the advantage goes to Boston.

    Boston has a better overall defence, however we have the best overall defenceman. Both teams have a top four capable of logging (collectively) 45-50 minutes, sheltering the bottom pairing. Match-ups, especially on the road, will be key. Both teams will try and exploit the 5/6 pairing. Montreal will try and exploit the lack of speed, while Boston will try and exploit Montreal’s lack of size. I am still of the opinion that we can not win with Bouillion and Weaver together. Yes, I understand that we just swept the Bolts, but this is nothing compared to what we are about to face. Everything is magnified in the playoffs and Boston, as great teams do, exploit their opponent’s weaknesses. Before the series is over we will see one of Tinordi, Murray or Beaulieu. In summary, Boston’s depth 1-6, is better than our 1-6, however PK is the difference maker, especially against the Bruins.

    Up front, our first unit will draw the lion’s share of the match ups. That said, our secondary scoring has improved to the point where now they have become a real threat each and every time they are on the ice. This is the exact same model that Boston used to beat us in 2011. It wasn’t the first line that won the Bruins that series, it was the third and fourth line. We now have quality up and down the lineup and will match up very evenly with Boston’s group.

    Thus far we have proven we can score goals. This even strength goal scoring has helped to mask our deficiency on the PP. It is true, you do not need a great PP to win in the playoffs, but that hinges entirely on having a strong group capable of producing 5×5. I anticipate a series of low scoring games, with every inch of the ice being fully contested. We will need to manufacture chances from our speed and transition game. To neutralize the Bruins attack, we must be able to effectively clear the puck in a timely manner. Reviewing our loss to the Bruins this season, we turned the puck over at the blue line, struggled in our zone and allowed the cycle game to take over.

    In the games in which we won, our goaltending was excellent and we used our speed to our advantage. Although Boston controlled the play during the 2-1 OT game (Montreal victory), we still surrendered less than 30 shots on goal. It is a bend, but not break defence that permits shots from the outside, but limits chances in the slot.

    In closing, I fully expect the Bruins’ very best. The winner of this series will fast track to the Stanley Cup finals. The Bruins’ face some injury adversity, however overall look fit and ready to play. I am hoping that the time off will greatly benefit our group as some of our key players (Prust and Vanek notably) appear to be playing hurt. The longer the series is extended the more anything can happen. My heart says Montreal in 6. My head says Boston in 5.

    Gotta go with your heart, right….. Montreal in 6. Cheers, CJ

    • Paz says:

      Here’s my playoff key against the Bruins.

      1) the refs must make the calls. If the Bruins are allowed to grab, punch, cross check, spear, hit after te whistle, etc.. etc… and they are not penalized, we will probably lose the series, and in short order.

      2) but if the refs make the appropriate calls, we need our power play to work, work consistently, and work in key times in the game.

      Bruins physicality in the playoffs vs Habs power play.

      A simple man’s assessment of the upcoming series.

      Live and let live.

    • Cal says:

      Your head says Boston in 5? Give it a shake, man.
      Habs are in the Gooins heads. It’s practically all they think about.
      The Habs have to be prepared for a lot of the same old bs Gooin tactics and answer them with bs of their own. Tit for tat.

      Habs are clearly faster and have 4 solid lines. The goaltending is a wash. The D is a wash. Habs have a real top 6 now.
      Habs in 6.

      • CJ says:

        Detroit also enjoyed a regular season advantage over Boston. The playoffs are a different animal. The manner in which the game is officated favors Boston.

        I would love to say that goaltending is a wash, but I feel like a Missouri license plate, “show me.” I am a huge Price fan – probably to a fault, but he needs to showcase his play when it counts the most, in the post season. Rask, thus far, has proven to be the better post season goalie. Again, I hope this all changes and think it can, but I have to relate the facts as they are available to me.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Hiya CJ. Even though they’re up 3-1 in this series I still see the Bruins having issues with the Wings speed. I think Montreal poses the same problem for them. Now if Carey can have a great series anything is possible. For cripes sake the Leafs had the almighty Bruins all but dead last year. The friggin Leafs. :)

    • JF says:

      Excellent analysis. Your remarks about depth, five-on-five scoring, and the importance of the bottom two lines are particularly relevant. These factors were precisely the reasons Boston beat us last time. We matched up well with them in goal and on defence; the main difference was that we relied on contributions from the powerplay, while they did all their scoring at even strength and had tremendous depth up front. In the playoffs, the powerplay is pretty much nullified in overtime, since the refs tend to put their whistles away. Advantage Boston.

      I think we match up better with them this time than we did three years ago. We have more depth now at all positions than we did then, and our lineup is better balanced. We showed in the Tampa series that we can get contributions from all four lines. If this continues, and if our top line can be more of a factor than it was against Tampa, we should be very dangerous offensively. Hopefully we’ll be able to burn them with our speed, as we did all season.

      No question that the Bruins’ defence is better, especially since it’s likely that either Murray with his lack of speed or Tinordi with his lack of experience will play.

      But the key is likely to be goaltending, which was not the case last time, when Price and Thomas finished with similar numbers. Rask is an elite goaltender, but he has not played well against us the last two years (except the game the Bruins won 4-1), so we might have a bit of a psychological advantage, especially if we can get to him early. But Price will have to raise his game a level. He was solid against Tampa after the first game, but he was not the reason we won. He’s got to find a way to deal with some of the flukey things the puck does – weird bounces, deflections, etc. – that require split-second adjustments. In the Tampa series, it seemed that whenever something like this happened, the puck ended up behind him. There’s no way he makes the save every time, but he’s got to make some of them.

      I’m not going to predict the winner. The Bruins are IMO the best team in the League, but we’ve shown that we can get under their skin, take them off their game, and expose their weaknesses. Can we do it over a seven-game series? We’ll see.

    • Fansincebirth says:

      After watching the Bruins/Wings thus far, it is quite clear that the refs are going to allow the Bruins to do pretty much whatever they want on the ice. The two handed chop by Marchand at the end of the 3rd last night was clear proof of what is being allowed.

      The Bruins are going to try to play a war of attrition by hitting, slashing and trying to inflict as much brutality in the game as they can get away with. It will be up to our guys to resist falling into the trap of matching tit for tat. We’ve all witnessed the horrendous results of trying to match the Bruins (or Sens) with the Neanderthal style of play. Pure and simple, we lose.

      Speed out of our end, aka the transition game, will be the Bruins downfall. Our forwards have to get in front of Rask and stay there. They’re going to take a pounding and hopefully, if the hockey Gods are watching out for us, there will be penalties called but then our PP has to start clicking.

      If we allow them to roam free in our zone, it’s going to be a sh*t show. Everyone has to contribute to the defence.

      My one hope and wish is that little POS Marchand gets injured either in the remaining Detroit game(s) or in our series. As much as I hate Chara and Luchump, I think my loathing for Marchand far exceeds that. Watching him last night going after Zetterburg (?) was a disgusting display. The Wing should have plain and simple laid lumber across the rat’s face, hard enough to break something.

      The TD Bank Garden fans will be screaming for blood and will stand and applaud every hit and every ounce of pain the Bruins can inflict on us….they will be rabid. Hopefully we can shut them up and prove that hockey skill wins out over Bettman’s brand of WWE on ice.

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      My head also says BB in 5. As we just proved vs TB, the regular season results are pretty meaningless. Games scattered here and there are just not the same as a series.

      The Bruins are built perfectly for the style that they play, and they are healthy and deep. I do think the Habs will play well and give them a good go, however.

      People cite the last series going 7 games, but remember that the Bs won in 5 games once they settled down and played hockey rather than going head hunting. Well, they always headhunt, but sometimes they go to extremes. If they needed reminders of how this is a bad policy, the last game will be all that they need.

  50. rhino514 says:

    I think there will be more than one overtime if the habs play the Bruins.
    The habs need to be on the winning end of those overtimes, i.e., if there are 3 overtimes, they need to win 2 out of 3, if there are two, they probably need to win both.
    Overtime is kind of a toss-up. So it could happen; those are the breaks they need. They cannot outplay the Bs the way they outplayed the Lightning, but they can play with them, and hope for a couple of breaks.
    They will undoubtedly be underdogs, but they will have a chance.

  51. Habfan17 says:

    I think Ron McLean should be removed from the telecasts. Then let go after the season ends. The refs have been hired and there should be no question that they can unbiasedly ref any teams!

    Dave Hodge was fired for throwing a pencil in the air when CBC decided to stop telecasting a playoff game going into overtime!
    Ron McLean questions the integrity of all refs when bringing up a Quebec born ref and his ability to ref a Habs game. That brings the integrity of the league into question, although, they hurt themselves enough with the lack of consistency and the lack of willingness to deal with players like Lucic, two spears, and Cooke!

    For me. McLean has lost any credibility he may have had. I hope Rogers and other broadcasters leave him out for next season!

    Habfan17

    • 24 Cups says:

      “That brings the integrity of the league into question”

      This comment inadvertently becomes Part Two of our morning smile today. As you have duly noted, league integrity is a bit of an oxymoron when it comes to the NHL.

      Speaking of morons, is Matt Cooke still in the NHL?

      24.4 Cups

    • Paz says:

      There was no reason for Maclean to even bring up the topic. Apparently, Cooper had implied that a local ref made a bad goal in the previous game.
      Well, if Maclean wanted to discuss this, which he shouldn’t, he could have supported the refs’ position of objectivity and neutrality no matter where they were born.
      Maclean is a ref!
      The fact that he chose to discuss the topic, and that he seemed to give Cooper’s complaint credibility, is absolutely ridiculous and inexcusable.
      Maclean is no idiot.
      This was done intentionally for some reason.

      • Habfan17 says:

        I would tend to agree with you. McLean, being a professional media person, should have known better and there were so many other great hockey stories to bring up. I too believe he knew what he was doing. Maybe he has decided to speak his mind knowing he won’t be back next season!

        Habfan17

        • boing007 says:

          Let it all hang out Ron! Let’s hear some more of your unscripted thoughts and asides. Show us the real Ron MacLean. Expose your inner Don Cherry on national TV.

          Richard R

  52. 24 Cups says:

    Re: Habs sign Crisp and Carr. I hope the Habs are still going to sign Brady Vail to an entry level contract. This guy could eventually evolve into a decent 4th line plugger. I’m sure the team can make some roster room seeing that they have a few forwards in Hamilton who will obviously never be NHL players. Might be time to cut a few of these guys loose.

    http://hamiltonbulldogs.com/pressbox/news/?article_id=758

    24.4 Cups

    • 24 Cups says:

      Here’s Montreal’s reserve list.

      http://www.capgeek.com/canadiens/reserve-list/

      24.4 Cups

    • Chris says:

      Vail has been a better NHL prospect at every step along the way. His two-way play makes him especially attractive. Vail was named the Western Conference’s most underrated player and was ranked 2nd for faceoffs in the annual OHL coaches poll.

      Vail posted 32 goals, 83 points and a +29 rating in 67 games as a top-line forward for the Windsor Spitfires, while Crisp posted 28 goals, 55 points and a +11 rating in 27 games while being used mostly as a 2nd line forward in Sudbury this year.

      Crisp is generally lauded for his physique (6’4″, 225 pounds) and his leadership, while Vail (6’1″, 197 pounds) was one of the better two-way forwards in the OHL this season and served as one of his team’s alternate captains.

      Both guys are intriguing prospects. I’m a little more down on Crisp than many here because I think his skating leaves a little to be desired. But both guys have something the Habs desperately need: NHL size.

      As you say, there is a lot of deadwood in the Canadiens’ prospects system. The 2008-2011 drafts did not generally pan out with the exception of Tinordi, Gallagher and Beaulieu. Bennett, Nygren and Dietz probably deserve a little more time to prove themselves, but the rest of those guys look unlikely to make the NHL jump.

      • Paz says:

        I like Bennett. He is a very good skater, he is very smart, and he has excellent balance of offence and defence in his game.
        He’s a little undersized, and I think this might hurt him, but it really shouldn’t.
        I think he could be another Vlassic type of player who quietly plays error free game after game.

      • Habfan17 says:

        I also think Vail could turn out to be a solid NHL player, probably a 3rd line centre and defensive specialist.

        I am not as concerned with Crisp’s skating. That was the knock on many players who turned out to be solid NHLer’s. Brett Hull, Luc Robitaille, Tim Kerr, Rick Tocchet, and many others.

        I am not saying Crisp will ever be a Brett Hull, but with the skating coaches that players have now, I would not write him off. Claude Lemieux is another who had a wide, unorthodox skating style, not the fastest, but big and smart enough, and a clutch performer!

        Habfan17

        • Chris says:

          You should be concerned with skating. Very few players make today’s NHL unless they are elite skaters. Those that do, and a guy like Vanek comes to mind, have ridiculous talent to make up for their skating issues.

          Crisp is not the most talented guy. He works hard, and he’s a great teammate. He’s also got great size. He may have a future as a banger in the NHL that can chip in the odd goal, but the NHL in 2014 is so far from the NHL where guys like Kerr and Tocchet could excel that it is almost unrecognizable. Hull and Robitaille would still find a way to excel because they were sublime talents: both featured fantastic shooting ability and the skill to get open for the short-time they needed to get that shot off.

      • boing007 says:

        Those stats on Vail and Crisp don’t read like the stats of future fourth line pluggers to me.

        Richard R

        • Chris says:

          Mike Blunden’s last season in the OHL:

          60 GP, 46 G, 84 PTS

          Ryan White’s last season in the WHL:

          68 GP, 28 G, 72 PTS

          Dale Weise’s last season in the WHL:

          53 GP, 29 G, 50 PTS

          A large number of NHL 4th liners were in fact point-per-game or higher players in their final junior years. Especially for guys in their final OHL season like Vail or Crisp, you expect big numbers…if they aren’t posting them, then they have very little chance of being anything but pluggers in the OHL.

          Based on his numbers as a 17- and 18-year old and his strong two-way play, I think Vail has the better long term potential. As with all prospects, however, it is his speed that is going to be the determining factor. He’s a decent skater, but not a great skater. In today’s NHL, decent skaters had better have all-world talent because the vast majority of the guys out there can really hustle.

  53. 24 Cups says:

    Today’s morning smile. This is how we watch play-off hockey in Slowville.

    https://scontent-b-ord.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn1/t1.0-9/10155816_10152311753775091_7185101675778731487_n.jpg

    24.4 Cups

  54. Maritime Ronn says:

    Good morning

    Today, the 3 finalists for the Vezina Trophy will be announced.

    “The Vezina Trophy is an annual award given to the goalkeeper adjudged to be the best at this position as voted by the general managers of all NHL clubs.”

    While Carey Price has had an excellent season, 3 other goaltenders have also been outstanding during the past season:
    Rask – Bishop – Varlamov.

    While Rask looks as though he will be a lock for the Trophy win, it will be interesting to see who the General Managers ( not the hockey writers) choose as the 2 other finalists.

    Most on HIO would have Price in the top 3, yet considering the team records of Bishop and Varlamov, along with their NHL top overall individual stats, it would also be difficult to leave them out as finalists.

    • 24 Cups says:

      Rask is a lock and deservedly so. Bishop and Varlamov get the nod over Price in light of the fact that their teams made such complete turnarounds. Tampa’s quick exit without Bishop says it all.

      The thing I love about Price is that he no longer has those mental meltdowns. None of that deer in the headlight look. I think his new level of maturity is there for everyone to see. You also see that a bit in MaxPac as he now has a bit of the gunslinger swagger in his game. Hopefully, that will be the next step for Subban whereby he adds an element of maturity and poise to his gifted abilities on the ice.

      24.4 Cups

    • rhino514 says:

      Rask plays behind a great D. Tim Thomas won the award with essentially the same team. So, for me, Rask shouldn´t be a lock.
      I get Bishop and Varlamov. The guy in Columbus is also amazing. Price deserves to be in the top 5 discussion as well.

      • 24 Cups says:

        I think that the Vezina going to a goalie with a solid D is part and parcel of that award’s history. It reminds me of when the Habs used to feature the Big Three on the backend.

        To be fair to Rask, he has the ability to make those big saves. Contrast that to poor Fleury over in Pittsburgh.

        24.4 Cups


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