Habs return home on winning note

The Canadiens enjoyed a day off Friday at home after beating the Stars 6-4 Thursday night in Dallas.

The Canadiens will play their first home game of 2014 when the Ottawa Senators visit the Bell Centre Saturday night (7 p.m., CBC, RDS, TSN Radio 690).

Thursday’s victory gave the Canadiens a 3-2-1 record during their six-game holiday season road trip.

“We had a pretty good road trip and with that kind of record after a tough road trip, we’re feeling pretty good,” P.K. Subban, who had a goal and three assists against the Stars, told reporters after the game.

Following Thursday’s victory, the Canadiens had the fourth-best record in the Eastern Conference at 24-14-4 and were third in the Atlantic Division with 52 points, behind Boston (27-12-2) with 56 points and Tampa Bay (24-12-4) with 52 points and two games in hand on Montreal.

Subban, who leads the Canadiens in scoring with 7-26-33 totals in 42 games and is a team-leading plus-13, will find out on Tuesday if he made Team Canada for the Sochi Olympics. The team will be officially announced during a press conference slated for 11 a.m. at the Maple Leafs practice facility in Toronto.

After Thursday’s game, Subban ranked third among NHL defencemen in scoring, trailing Chicago’s Duncan Keith (3-36-39) and Ottawa’s Erik Karlsson (10-28-38). He ranked 11th among defencemen in plus-minus.

The Florida Panthers will visit the Bell Centre Monday night before the Canadiens go on the road again to face the Flyers in Philadelphia on Wednesday. The Chicago Blackhawks will visit the Bell Centre next Saturday.

(Photo by Sharon Ellman/The Associated Press)

Habs split six-game road trip, by Pat Hickey

Pacioretty, Subban lead charge in Dallas, by Pat Hickey

Subban steals the show, Canadiens.com

Canadiens vs. Stars photo gallery, montrealgazette.com

Senators Extra, Ottawa Citizen

484 Comments

  1. Danno says:

    Sweden = Unboring hockey

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  2. Timo says:

    What happened to the Buffalo trade? I was hoping to wake up today to the news of Briere, Diaz and a 5th round pick for Stafford, Ott and Moulson. What happaned? Did Bergevin want even Moar Bigger?

  3. Hobie Hansen says:

    Nice to hear Ray Ferrero say that Jacob de la Rose knows his strengths, uses them well and is going to have a long successful NHL career.

  4. DipsyDoodler says:

    19 pts in 21 games but the Ignorantariat still thinks the main problem is Desharnais.

    If he was 10% taller and 100% less francophone they’d be salivating over the guy.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      I was disgusted by the Desharnais contract when it happened, I wanted to puke with his play earlier this year but he’s definitely changed my opinion. He’s playing very well. I take my crow medium rare.

      In saying that though, the overall makeup of the forwards is still way to small to compete in the long run, mainly in the playoffs.

      If Desharanis and Gallagher are the two small players on the team they’ve got to move/dump Gionta, Briere, Diaz and Bouillon.

      • DipsyDoodler says:

        Why disgusted?

        He makes the salary of an average NHL player at his age. No more no less.

        • Hobie Hansen says:

          As I mentioned, it’s blatantly obvious the problem the Habs have is they’re too small on both side of the puck.

          Montreal gets caught in their end for way to long against many teams because they’re out muscled and out reached.

          Their small forwards are boxed to the outside in the offesive zone for the same reason.

          They should be subtracting small players not singing them to long term contacts.

    • Cal says:

      If he wasn’t being rewarded after 20 games of futility, I think we’d be okay with him. No one else on the roster gets this special treatment. It’s nonsense when his upside is so much lower than Galchenyuk’s.
      DD-20 points after 40 games with an ATOI of 16:10. Yeah, Habs will sure win with this guy as #1.

    • HabFab says:

      The 10% taller sounds nice. I think the only francophone issue is the perceived “allowances that he is accorded” by some of the Ignorantariat.

      • twilighthours says:

        It’s amazing that a guy who was never drafted and has worked his way through various pro leagues somehow has received special treatment.

        Amazing.

    • FlyAngler says:

      How bout 20% taller and 40 percent stronger and he can speak whatever freakin’ language he wants?

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

    • Bob_Sacamano says:

      Yes, he has played much better recently and he´s certainly not the team´s biggest problem right now but I´m still not impressed. Put Bournival in the same spot from game one on and he easily would have 20 points now as well.

      With Plekanec, Galchenyuk and Eller around, we just don´t need Desharnais. It´s as simple as that (at the same time we desperately need at least one top 6 winger with size).

      Please keep in mind that Bournival can play center too and de la Rose should be ready for 2015/16, maybe earlier.

      • twilighthours says:

        No, that is not true at all. That thing about bournival

        • Bob_Sacamano says:

          I´m sure it is. He only has 9 points less. He has played 5 games less with less ice time, lesser linemates and next to no PP time. There´s no way he´d be worse over 40 games being on the ice that much with Pacioretty and also Subban on PP.

          • twilighthours says:

            Bob,

            I genuinely value your posts – here and on the chronicle herald site – but this, to me, is just your hatred of a player blinding you. (We know you have some hatred. I find your hate of Murray awesome and hilarious).

            Bournival is a much better skater and much stronger. He will never have the smarts or skill that desharnais has. He can’t make the plays that desharnais does.

        • FlyAngler says:

          I agree with you Bob. And let’s not forget he has 4 inches and 27 pounds on DD AND he is a Francophone player- so French has nothing to do with it!

          “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

      • Marc10 says:

        Bourni is not there yet and is a different type of player. He simply doesn’t have the experience yet, IMO. He’s not what I would call a playmaker either which Patches needs.

        His speed and size make him a great forechecker. He cuts the ice in half for everyone else. If they know where to go when Bourni goes hard after a dump in, they’ll get rewarded. We need a guy like that on every line… But he’s not a playmaker. He’s North-South. Not East-West.

        Bourque needs to be that guy. So does Gio. Those are the guys Bourni should replace or inspire.

    • Forum Dog says:

      Desharnais has played well recently, but his production is almost entirely dependent on Pacioretty and the PP. Without those two factors, he goes back to being a soft, undersized pivot. The coaching staff has given him prime opportunity and, to his credit, he has worked hard and taken advantage.

      Regardless of what anyone thinks about him and his role on the team, the Habs need Desharnais (and Pacioretty) to keep it up if they are going to be successful.

    • twilighthours says:

      20% taller or 20% faster, and he’d be one of the best centres in the game. He’s just plain smart and skilled.

    • CH Marshall says:

      He’s playing well lately. The problem is when he isn’t, and he can’t compensate for his somewhat one dimensional game- ie playing the grinding game. Personally I find him very frustrating to watch. I want him to do well, but I feel dismayed everytime I see him get knocked to the ice or gets the puck poked away by a longer stick etc. I’m definately microanalysing his every move, and overall I wish MB hadn’t given him such a long extension, and that we didn’t have a logjam at centre.

  5. Maritime Ronn says:

    My wish list for next year after the Habs get exposed in the playoffs.

    Impossible to fill in all the “X”, yet somehow GMMB has to find a Top 4-5 Right Side Dman, and at least something that resembles a 2nd/3rd line right winger.

    After Gallagher and Subban, Habs are very weak on the Right Side forward and D.

    Any suggestions considering the Salary Cap?

    1) Pacioretty – Galchenyuk – Gallagher
    2) …..X…………….. Eller………………X
    3) Bournival……Plekanec………….X
    4) Moen…………….X ………………Prust

    Markov-Subban
    Emelin…..X
    Gorges….X

    • Habfan17 says:

      Good morning M R!

      I am with you. I have tried to post over 20 times a trade with Colorado in Feb that would give the Habs a top 4 righty d-man and a 2nd line left wing. Each time I try to post, it disappears. I have proposed other trades and they post. I wonder if there may be something in the works.

      One difference I have is Gorges gone too and Pateryn on the 3rd pairing. After reading your suggestions, I think if Tinordi is not ready, I would keep Gorges one more season.

      Habfan17

    • mrhabby says:

      the additions will not come through the draft, iam not sure what FAgency is… so it looks like a trade useing some of our assets from Hamilton i guess.

      ps..speaking of assets in Hamilton. I was thinking other than Tinordi and NB and few others the habs don’t really have players that can step right into NHL action. Lots of pieces still required to talk about a serious run.

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      That’s definately a “wish” list.

      Desharnais and Bourque who are singed for several more years are missing from your lineup. They’re not impossible to deal but pretty tough.

      The two missing defensemen on your list will be filled by either Pateryn, Tinordi, Beaulieu or Drewiske.

    • CanadienBoy says:

      Slowly Leblanc rounding up into a better player this year 31 game 19 pts + 2 last years ,62 game 18 pts and – 18 could still make the team next year

    • Bob_Sacamano says:

      I´d keep Bourque at RW on the 3rd line. Other than that? Exactly as I see it.

      Probably not the best for his development but I could easily see de la Rose as our 4th line center next season.

    • John Q Public says:

      Put Eller on the top spot, Slot Plex to 2 and Nyuk to 3.

      Or Plex and Fucale to EDM for Yakupov & ……

      Then Eller 1, DD 2, Nyuk 3.

    • JUST ME says:

      I think as you do that there should be many empty seats in the bus starting next season. If this team is to be re-shaped then not only the youngsters should be involved but also veterans that must be shuffled to try to find the perfect recipe.

      I am just afraid that we fall in a situation where for any reason we keep lots of players that have been doing O.K. and make us feel comfortable. For instance we are hearing about keeping captain Gionta because you do not get rid of a captain. WRONG REASON!

      Like it or not , you cannot get rid of D.D. or if you do someone else will go with him and i`d rather not see Max Pac tear up the league elsewhere.

      We must be carefull though not to think that Hamilton can supply us with NHL ready athletes just yet.
      I told you ! There are so many reasons for us not to do an overhaul but if we could, i would…

      I for one do not feel like we are going to get exposed in the playoffs.

      I do not think that if we are eliminated it will be a surprise for anyone. Obvioulsly although they can put up a fight in the east i am not that certain that they will be able to get out of the conference and then against the western machines…

  6. Mike D says:

    MB’s to-do list (the Mike D version, lol)

    1) Gionta. 2 months left before the deadline so you gotta figure out whether you keep him for the season or trade him at the deadline. If it’s the latter, start building a network of potential trading partners and hope Gio starts potting some goals to increase his value.

    2) Re-signings. Markov and Subban are going to cost a lot of money but are big parts of this team. The sooner you get it done, the sooner they can put it out of their minds. I’d actually re-sign Larry first. His negotiation should be easier and since he’s cooled down greatly from the beginning of the season his value is somewhat lower. Diaz and White are less of a priority but I’d probably re-sign both of them. If nothing else it will increase their trade value if the term and dollars are club-favourable (more so for Diaz).

    3) Briere. It’s just not working out and was a mistake to begin with. He’s playing poorly and there isn’t really a spot for him anywhere. Trade him for Stafford if Buffalo is interested. He’s been in Buffalo so long that the whole “needs a change of scenery” concept might actually apply, where as Briere is just done. If Stafford doesn’t bounce back, at least you’ve traded a small player for a big player which has a two-fold effect.

    4) DD. His value has increased and he’s playing well right now which makes him somewhat more moveable…..which may not last. I wouldn’t make calls for trading him, but when other teams call us for trades, maybe slip his name in and see if there’s interest. I believe Max can play well with one of our other 3 centers.

    5) Yakupov. Just monitor the situation. It’s not going well right now and Yakupov has some dis-likeable traits to his game, but I think in Montreal he could become what Edmonton had in mind when they drafted him. He gets reunited with Chucky, and has the ultimate Russian elder statesman in Markov here to bring him around, as well as Emelin who should also help. The price might still be too high but like I said, just keep an eye on it – Edmonton is a volatile club so anything is possible. A 1st round pick is probably not enough considering ours will be outside lottery territory, but we have a lot of pieces and EDM needs a lot of pieces outside of scoring forwards. And we could use another legitimate scoring winger who’s young.

    Just my $0.02 – be kind :-)

    – Honestly yours
    Twitter: @de_benny

    • Habs4LifeInTO says:

      I’m good with everything you’ve said. I think that this is place for all kinds of ideas and you should be allowed to float them. I’m sure most of us are thinking along these lines. Briere for Stafford would need more from us and might work if we add into that with picks or prospects. I’d like Ott too for a little more sand. Maybe we could do something with Buffalo.

      24 cups and counting….

      • Mike D says:

        Thanks TO. I would hope that we wouldn’t have to add much more in the Briere-Stafford potential deal. Stafford’s been crap about as long as Briere has and they have identical contracts remaining. If they want a 5th round pick or worse, then fine. Or perhaps an average prospect at best, that’s okay too. Buffalo needs to sell tickets while they rebuild and Briere has a lot of cache there. Their ownership would probably like the deal for $ reasons.

        I too would like Ott for 4th line C. Other things to consider are that he’s a UFA after this year and currently makes 3mil which is pretty expensive for the player he is. We’re not in a position where a rental is much help to us, and he may want 3mil/year for a few years on his new contract which is not something I would give him. He’ll be 32 before next season starts. 2mil for 3 years would be what I give him. To acquire Ott, we’d have to give them White as he would then become redundant on our roster. I’m fine with that, but White might just turn into Steve Ott 2.0 with a little more seasoning.

        – Honestly yours
        Twitter: @de_benny

    • FlyAngler says:

      Makes a lot of sense Mike. If anyone is unkind, it will be because they are too caught up in their own reality……. or unreality

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

    • Habfan17 says:

      On point 1, I would say, Gionta should be moved
      Point 2, I would agree, resign Markov for two seasons then lock up PK.
      Point 3, Yes, If the Sabres would do it.
      Point 4, DD has offensive talent but not much else and it is true, he can’t compete against the larger centres come play off time, trade him for whatever they can get, throw in Diaz.
      Point 5, at this point, I would pass on the Nail. His character is in question with his comments and with De La Rose, Colbert etc.

      Habfan17

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Gio’s huge Cap Hit will limit the teams available to pick him up.
      The Habs would also need his OK with his NTC.

      You can see here the projected Cap Space per team at trade deadline and what type of contract they can pick up.

      Most of the teams that have space will not be in the playoffs

      http://www.capgeek.com/index.php

      • Habfan17 says:

        The cap hit will be prorated for the balance of the season so a team that believes they are contenders this season would be able to take it on. The NTC may be an issue.

        Habfan17

        • Mike D says:

          Correct. Gio’s cap hit at the deadline would be around 2mil or maybe less.

          As for his NTC, I doubt Gio would refuse to waive it. He’ll be a UFA this summer anyway and can sign anywhere he wants. Plus any team who would trade for him by the deadline would be a contender and I doubt he’d decline to have a chance to win the cup.

          – Honestly yours
          Twitter: @de_benny

          • Habfan17 says:

            I agree, I think Gio is that type of guy. I hope someone wants him at the deadline. It would be like Cole, thank you very much for what you did as a Hab, good luck with your new team.

            Habfan17

    • mrhabby says:

      i would not trade the Captain. i think that would back fire and prove to be a terrible move if Habs are in the playoffs.

      • Habfan17 says:

        I think it is a 50/50 proposition. It could go either way. It has worked in the past and with the young guys who feel they are ready to take on more and aren’t getting the opportunity, it would be a good thing. In the Habs case I think they have enough leader types in the room to get them through the transition.

        Habfan17

      • Mike D says:

        It certainly could, but not necessarily. It also sends the message that the team is moving forward with a new direction and that MB is committed to building a long-term winner. Gio is not nearly as embedded as Saku was, so it’s a different situation entirely.

        Last year SJ traded both Clowe and Murray before the deadline and that didn’t have a detrimental effect on them. Both those guys had been there for quite a while.

        We’d miss Gio’s defensive abilities and PK duty, but we have other guys who can step in and do that. Plus it allows us to put a more productive winger with Pleky or at least give some guys the opportunity. I’m thinking Bournival.

        – Honestly yours
        Twitter: @de_benny

    • Marc10 says:

      Great post. My two cents.

      1) at this rate, Gio is done and he won’t have any value at the deadline. I’d like him out of the line up. I know he’s the captain, a true warrior, but there is nothing there. Maybe a game upstairs fires him up some. We need his production. No excuses.

      2) got to sign all 3. Start with PK and work from there. He’s the best player and thus the priority. Get all three done now. Trade Markov or Eller if you can’t get them done. They have value now, so don’t delay if there’s a hurdle.

      3) I’d re-insert him in the line-up until he can be moved. Use him as a PP specialist on the second wave and maybe slot him in when you want to send a message to Pleks about winning a faceoff or Gio when he isn’t scoring (as in the last 29 games or so….) Don’t bench Bourni for Briere though. Give a veteran a night off instead and hope Danny finds the net. Trade him for another reclamation project once you have him going again… If possible.

      4) DD and Patches are locked at the hip. I think you piss of Max if you do this, so no go. He’s your third centre until Chucky joins the rotation. Then you have some choices to make.

      5) would be worth a look. Eller and Emelin are the players I would mention in that discussion. I would expect a combo of players on both sides to get Yak. MT would hate that guy for sure, but re-uniting him with Chucky makes a lot of sense from a skills perspective. It’s a roll of the dice. How much of a flight risk is he? He has KHL written all over him…

      • Mike D says:

        1) I think guys like Gio always have rental value. A former cup winner who was captain of the Habs for a few years and plays very smart defensively while having a sniper pedigree (even if not lately) is gonna get you something in a trade. He’s got 20 points in 41 games this year so it’s not like he’s done nothing. If he picks it up with some goals between now and the deadline we’ll get even more value for him. Lesser players have got 1st round picks before so at least a 2nd rounder or solid prospect.

        4) DD and Max are joined at the hip, but that’s part of the problem. It means a better C doesn’t get to to play with our best winger, and DD gets more opportunities than he may deserve at times. That could become a problem over time if other guys feel slighted. If it pisses Max off, then too bad. I love Max, but he needs to stop whining. It’s the NHL, there’s no guarantee you get to play with your friends. We already have a logjam at C and that’s without Chucky playing there. We also have a size problem and moving DD helps with that too. He’s hot right now so gotta act before he gets cold or has a poor showing in the playoffs.

        5) I would never trade Emelin or Eller for Yak. Emelin’s been bad lately but we know how good he can be and he’s the only legit physical force we have for the long term on the back end. Tinordi isn’t an NHLer yet and Murray is a bottom pairing guy who may not be back at all next year. I would trade them a 1st round pick as the main piece and then fill out the rest of the package with pieces we can part with that they find useful, or maybe we take back an undesired contract from them if there isn’t much term left on it.

        – Honestly yours
        Twitter: @de_benny

        • Marc10 says:

          1) I hope you’re right.
          4) yes it is a problem. If Max could play this well with another center it would make life easier. Unfortunately, for whatever reason (and I’m just going to assume the players and coaches know better than me) Max plays his best hockey with DD.
          5) I just mentioned those two because if you’re going to go after a first overall pick, you need to give the other guys something they need… In Edmonton’s case, that’s a solid NHL Dman (Yemmy’s present form notwithstanding) or a responsible two-way forward with some skills who is an NHL player. Bottom line, Edmonton is going to want a top 6 forward or a top 4 d with solid NHL experience to start the conversation.

          • Mike D says:

            1) Me too, hahaha

            4) I would certainly hope that Max could find good chemistry with Larry or Chucky. The talent is all there, it may just need some time to develop. The team gets totally handcuffed when DD and/or Max go cold and that can’t keep happening.

            5) I agree you need to give to get and Yak would require a good piece in return, but his value is lower than it was at the draft and seems to be getting worse. I wouldn’t give up Eller or Emelin cuz they are too important to our team. I think offering a 1st round pick is a really good starting point and we know EDM loves 1st rounders, lol. It would take more than that and I would add more to it, but none of our young core guys. Same thing with prospects – I’d include one but it wouldn’t be any of our A-listers like NB or JT.

            – Honestly yours
            Twitter: @de_benny

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Happy New Year to Mike D from D Mike.

      All looks good, and I like your Yakupov wrinkle at the end! Who knows? (Might have to change the club’s name though!).

      Gionta — in terms of pure data and dollars, he should go as soon as possible. But in terms of morale and class, Montreal should surely keep him to season’s end. UNLESS he is already interested in moving to NJ to play with bro. I think that’s the only scenario in which he should go before next season.

      ABout re-signing Diaz. I don’t think he’s a bad player, but he just doesn’t seem to be what Montreal needs now. Yes, sign White — he has been a project, continues to mature, brings 100% every game, might even score a few more (!).

  7. jols101 says:

    I have watched the WJC for decades and this Swedish team is the most complete team I’ve seen the Swedes ice in a long time. The Russians are staying with them so far though and actually have the edge in play. It is only half way through the first and it will be interesting to see if the Russians can keep up the tempo.

    At noon our Canadian boys will have their hands full with a very good Finland team. I think we have enough to edge them out. I predict a Canadian/Sweden final but the beauty of this tourny is it could easily be the exact opposite.

  8. John Q Public says:

    Don’t want to sound like a smartass but I seen some comments asking Josh Gorges to shutup. The sound bite you hear on 24CH is just that a sound bite. The keep replaying it in the episode, it’s not like he keeps saying it over and over.

    • dr. gesundheit says:

      Nyuck nyuck…good point.

      Too ofter we forget that shows like this (dare I say “reality TV”) is often scripted entertainment which is in some ways “out of a can”.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Good point, JQP.

      Indeed, it would do us all well to remember that no matter how interesting it is and how real it looks, 24CH is manufactured entertainment, edited, controlled, and NOT fly-on-the-wall. Sure we can watch it, but munching on major grains of salt.

  9. Habs4LifeInTO says:

    Bulldogs win 2-1. Tokarski with the first star. Christian Thomas scores the winner. LL has an assist. Beaulieu and Ellis are plus 2. The Dogs are improving, eh?

    24 cups and counting….

  10. Ian Cobb says:

    It is cold outside for sure, but it is a great time of year to spend indoors watching hockey. Juniors go at 1pm est. Habs on at 7pm.

    I still have a half bottle of single malt!
    I am going for a swim workout this morning!.
    Going to be a great day!

    Hope Therrien lets the boys play creative hockey as in Dallas! The other system way was not working!

  11. GL says:

    Unless MB plans on moving Pacioretty I would have Galchenyuk and Gallagher with him. Get that line going for next year plus it will give Galchenyuk some experience at center in the NHL. Right now if he is suppose to be our up and coming star center it’s time to find out. we have no chance at winning the cup this year why waste him. The remaining forwards. Put together three lines good enough to win and get us in the playoffs. They could also try and make a trade to free up a center position and get a good scoring winger …

    • Marc10 says:

      They’re going to finish minus 20 if you put those 3 together. Chucky, if he’s going to become a center, needs to learn the craft with responsible two way veterans. At least one that can cover his backcheck for him. That guy isn’t on the team yet unless he’s a healthy Prust or Moen. Not exactly top 6 material, eh.

  12. Mavid says:

    Off to Montreal..and then the game tonight..yip skippidy doooo

    Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

  13. Ian Cobb says:

    UPDATE: Malcolm Subban earned his first career AHL shutout tonight with 25 saves in a 3-0 win over the Worcester Sharks. Congratulations Malcolm! But you happen to be playing for the wrong team my friend!

    • IdleNoMore says:

      Took him this long? looks like we got the right subban

      “He was chewing Juicy Fruit gum, I didn’t know whether to shake his hand or kiss him”

  14. Cal says:

    This is a song I finished up a few days ago. This morning, I heard the news about Phil Everly.
    This is Chet Atkins, Mark Knopfler with Phil and Don Everly.

  15. CJ says:

    Although I’m sure that he’s hated by the majority of forum contributors, I’d love to see Montreal sign UFA Shawn Thorton. It would be a major coup, taking him away from the Bruins. Provided it had a positive effect on team chemistry, I’ve always respected his game. As much as I dislike the Bruins and Senators, a Thorton or Neil would help this group.

    • Cal says:

      Too old and his decision making is questionable. I am very tired of the Habs signing older has been type of enforcers. Laraque and Parros have both been useless as Habs, so why continue to sign these guys?

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      5 years ago? Maybe, yet he turns 37 this summer.
      Habs have Moen and when he wants to play and stick up for his mates as he did the other night, that is a much better option than 8 minute Thornton.
      Thornton also plays on no specialty teams whereas Moen has become a key guy an the PK.

      • dr. gesundheit says:

        don’t like piling on…but I gotta agree.

        • CJ says:

          I totally respect the feedback received. I get it. Once bit, twice shy. There is just something about this guy that I’ve always liked. Not just the physical stuff either. Guy can skate and finish. On a one year deal, with lots to prove, I think he will have a great year and could help a team trying to take that next step.

  16. JohnBellyful says:

    Friends, I don’t want to sound alarmist but this whole behind-the-scenes stuff being broadcast on TV – CH24, Winter Classic, etc – or published online – selection of the United States Olympic team – has me worried.
    I think the purpose isn’t so much to entertain as to lay the groundwork for the complete intrusion by the state into the everyday lives of the masses.
    It started with surveillance cameras at street corners, commercial centres, government buildings, ATM locations, workplaces – all for our safety and security, of course.
    But now professional athletes and their bosses are being filmed in THEIR workplaces not for their security or safety but for our amusement, which must be offputting and can’t make them happy.
    It used to be what they did on the ice was all that mattered. Not any more.
    So if these handsomely paid athletes who value their privacy can’t say no to being filmed at trying times in their lives, what chance do we, as ordinary citizens, have of preventing the state from placing cameras in our households for the entertainment of others? It’s only a matter of time, folks.
    Reality TV is taking over the air waves, demonstrating there’s a huge audience for shows starring Joe and Jill Average.
    What’s one more intrusion, then, when spy agencies are already monitoring our telephone calls and emails?
    Their introducing cameras into the home isn’t far-fetched but that kind of investment requires a huge outlay of capital so if what’s recorded can generate revenue, why not go for it?
    I think Aunt May would be interested to find out why she wasn’t invited over for Christmas, and youngest son Billy would welcome the opportunity, on HIS show, to rebut family allegations he’s a drug user.
    Actually, it might lead to greater harmony throughout society if people knew their every word was being recorded for transmission.
    (Unless you’re Brian Burke. Or Don Cherry.)
    It could lead to a surge in the sale of Cones of Silence

    — “A little song, a little dance, a little camera down your pants.” –

  17. rhino514 says:

    I would say Gorges for captain. I know he´s hard to measure because of what he brings, but is it fair to say he is actually playing well this year?

  18. Mike D says:

    I see some talk down below of who should be our next Captain and just thought I’d chime in. I believe the players should vote on it, but if I was tasked with choosing the next C I’d offer it to Markov first. He’s the longest tenured Hab and still has the goods despite all his previous injuries. From what I can gather he is also greatly respected by his teammates. If Marky wasn’t interested my next choice would be Pleky. Second-most tenured Hab and also still has the goods. Quietly does his job very well despite probably having the toughest role on the team and also well-respected by his mates from what I can see.

    Both Marky and Pleky are quiet types, but our room would still largely be leadership-by-committee so the more vocal guys can still do their thing.

    – Honestly yours
    Twitter: @de_benny

    • Mustang says:

      Mike, I understand what you are saying but I think that Markov would probably not want that job. He seems to want to stay away from the spotlight. Pleks is also a quiet guy but based on your feelings, would be a better choice. How about PK as captain a couple of years down the road? He is anything but shy or quiet.

      • Mike D says:

        Hi Mustang.
        I could see Marky not wanting the job, especially if the rumours from a couple years ago are true that he turned it down. That said, no harm in offering it to him – he’s earned it and it’s a sign of respect. If he says ‘nyet’, no harm done and move on to the next.

        I think Plek would be a great choice for the C for the reasons I stated above, and he may actually be interested to boot, lol.

        And I agree that P.K. would be an excellent choice a couple years down the road and I do see him as our Captain in the long run. A couple of our younger guys might be capable of that job too: Max, Chucky, and even Gally for playing with the heart that he does.

        – Honestly yours
        Twitter: @de_benny

        • 24 Cups says:

          If we’re looking far down the road I’d take Gallagher over Subban. In the interim, Pleks would be fine although there still is support for Gorges. The main thing with an interim captain would be the ability to bridge the gap between the veterans and the youth brigade.

    • FlyAngler says:

      Markov would provide outstanding leadership by example- walking the walk if you will. I think that this is even more important than the vocal piece.

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

      • Mike D says:

        I agree and believe Markov already provides outstanding leadership even without the C on his jersey. Marky is not only quiet but he’s also very private and part of being the C is that you’re the face of the team….something I could see Markov not wanting.

        – Honestly yours
        Twitter: @de_benny

    • sCOTT1243 says:

      Well watching CH24, it wouldn’t be Jorges…he would drive me nuts in the dressing room. Nothing wrong with getting the guys going but he needs to learn to shut it. Hated guys like that in the dressing room, you re losing you know what you need to do, you don’t need someone yapping all the time like that.

      • Mike D says:

        Different strokes for different folks I guess. Gorges is definitely the most vocal guy based on what we see in 24CH, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. For one, it shows he really cares. His before-period rally cries of “Alright let’s go boys, let’s get it!” shouldn’t bother anybody. He isn’t the most talented player in the room, but nobody can say he doesn’t give it his all when he plays. Blocking shots isn’t a pleasurable thing to do, but he’s been our team leader in that category for years now.

        Not saying he should be captain, but he’s part of the leadership group for sure.

        – Honestly yours
        Twitter: @de_benny

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      The Habs have to sign Markov first.
      Even if the Habs sign him, do they need/want another older player that ‘may’ have 3 years left…and then the Captaincy is shifted again?

      Depending on how things pan out, next summer just may be the right time for a Habs leadership change, and a new change of face for the franchise.
      That could mean some combo of Max-PK-Gallagher-Galchenyuk.

      • 24 Cups says:

        Ronn – I don’t think any of those four could take over the captaincy next season. None of them are mature enough for the post. Having Landeskog captain at the age of 21 is nothing but a joke in my eyes.

      • Mike D says:

        Mornin’ Ronn,
        I really believe Marky will be back for 2 or 3 years. I think the team wants him and he’s always made it clear he wants to stay in Montreal.

        Part of the reason why I like the idea of Markov for Captain is that I think a 2-3 year turnaround to shift the leadership to the young guys would be a good thing. Let them become (young) vets first and then give them the room.

        – Honestly yours
        Twitter: @de_benny

  19. Habfan10912 says:

    Continued talk about DD here. While I agree he cannot be our number 1 center he’s an extremely skilled offensive player. He sees the ice as well as anyone on the team and often is capable of generating a decent scoring opportunity out of very little.

    His problem is his strength. It’s often ridden off the puck and his game is not prone to a cycle puck possession game. He’s also nearly useless as a 4th line center so this will be an issue when Galchenyuk moves to center.

    Galchenyuk, Eller, Pleks should be the top 3 going forward. Eller has had success on the wing so its possible he moves to the wing and DD slides in there. That then flies in the face of bigger and stronger up the middle.

    If I’m a betting man I think the organization will continue to delay the Galchenyuk move to center until Pleks’ game erodes to the point where DD can play 3rd line center in that spot. DD appears to be in good favor with the organization and I’d be shocked if he’s moved. Moving Pleks now would be just plain stupid so Galchenyuk waits his turn.

    • 24 Cups says:

      You bring up an interesting point. Most Hab fans assume that Galchenyuk will make the move to centre next year but that may not be part of the overall plan. The team already has three decent offensive pivots but the only scorer on the left side is Max. Montreal could easily keep the status quo for another year.

    • FlyAngler says:

      Your analysis makes a lot of sense Habfan. In my opinion the Habs would be best off if Eller and Pleks are the #1 & #2 centremen in the short term until Chucky is ready for one of the top 2 slots at centre. I would either play DD in the 3rd centre slot or trade him. The problem I see with him is that size and strength render him incapable of competing against other teams top 2 centremen in the playoffs and if we go into the playoffs with him again in one of those slots, it just becomes another rerun of the Groundhog Day. I might be wrong- but I don’t think so.

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Hi Jim

      GM Marc Bergevin said the following:
      ” “I believe you have players that get you in the playoffs, and you have players that get you through the playoffs.”

      When the playoffs roll around, the game changes.
      Everything tightens up, the hits are tougher and bigger, the puck battles and battles for positioning are more fierce, and the refs put their whistles away.

      A small, 1 trick pony passer playing Top 6 minutes will not get the Habs “through the playoffs.”

    • Habfan17 says:

      Actually the Eller experiment on the wing failed miserably. He did not do well at all and only started to play well when moved back to hi natural position at center.

      On another note, I find it funny that the kids like Galchenyuk and Eller are force to try different positions, but vets like Pleks and Gionta are not. If it is supposed to be so easy at the NHL level to shift positions, why not move Pleks to left wing and make Galchenyuk his centre? Pleks has been terrible at face offs lately, but he could mentor Galchenyuk on all other aspects of playing centre.

      Habfan17

    • Cal says:

      I have never witnessed such a bunch of crap revolving around such a player. RDS does nothing but pump his tires. DD should have been moved the moment the Habs signed Brière, but no. And now MT plays him 20 minutes a game no matter what he brings. Habs will not contend with tiny tot getting all that ice. Imagine if Chucky was centering Patches and Gally? It wouldn’t take 20 games for the line to get going. It would take a couple shifts.

      • FlyAngler says:

        Stop it Cal, you’re making me horney!

        “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

      • Marc10 says:

        Chucky with Patches and Gally would be minus 20.

        The problem with moving Chucky to center right now is we don’t have the supporting cast. He needs at least one good two-way, top 6 winger with him to cover his defensive lapses. Otherwise he’ll get eaten alive and lose all confidence. Gio is past his prime…

        If Eller could play wing, you might have part of the answer. Bourque. Nah. Prust and Moen, just not good enough. Bottom line, we just don’t have the personnel.

        But hey, still not convinced? Two words: Edmonton Oilers

  20. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …3 Habs Prospects in top-30 of the WJHC in Sweden at this time

    …third leading scorer overall, following Sweden’s Filip Forsberg and Canada’s Anthony Mantha (tied for first) in the tournament is Our (Slovakia’s) Martin Reway

    …number 23 is Jacob de la Rose …number 29, Sebastien Colberg

  21. Habitant in Surrey says:

    Artturi Lehkonen: …drafted both by SKA St. Petersberg of the KHL and the Montreal Canadiens of the NHL in the respective 2nd round of their drafts

    …likely Lehkonen intends to pursue the NHL first, but as a technicality, does anyOne here know whether He is ‘owned’ equally by SKA St. Petersberg and Our Canadiens at this point ?

    …has He signed a contract with the Canadiens ?

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      He hasn’t signed a contract with the Habs as of yet.
      the link below shows all the Habs contracts and if you click on the player’s name, it will also show the details.

      http://www.capgeek.com/canadiens/

    • HabFab says:

      Chris,

      Lehkonen is “owned” by his present Finnish team until his contract expires. He will then be owned by whomever signs him.

      His NHL rights belong to the Habs and his KHL rights belong to St Petersburg.

      PS: hope you and the kids had a great holiday.

  22. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …Hamilton Bulldogs play a second game in Abbotsford vs the Heat tomorrow (Saturday) night

    …Me thinks I will take My Kidz to that game and watch Our Doggies’ Prospects a little more up close and personal

  23. The Jackal says:

    How do people feel about this lineup down the middle for our top 9:
    Chucky
    Larry
    Double D

    Then we make sure the only small players we have are DD and Gally.

  24. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …’Dogs vs Heat in Abbotsford …2-1 Hamilton

    …first star Tokarski, brilliant at end of game with Heat playing an extra man

    …second star, Courtnall

    …I only viewed most of third period, none of the goals, so I assume Courtnall was in on the earlier goal(s) ?

    …anyhow, in My opinion, Hamilton seem to play a very similar ‘system’ to Our Habs …without the eye-catching individual skills of a PK, Gallagher, Chuk, Patches or Pleks

    …impressed they kept a Heat team with a Baertchi etc., bottled-up to a great extent in the third

    …what little I saw of the forwards, the ones that stood-out to Me were Dumont, Holland, Andrigghetto, and Mascenauer

    …on D, Pateryn, Dietz, and Tinordi

    …some Whom actually attended the game may have more detail to add …or disagree :)

  25. jimmy shaker says:

    This is the team I would keep….

    price, budaj

    markov, emelin
    subban, gorges

    gallagher, DD, Patch, galchenyuk, pleks, eller, prust, white

    i could do without:

    diaz, bouillon, murray, moen, gio, bourque, briere, parros, bournival

    So that leaves 2 D-spots available, and 4 forwards, to add size, toughness, and offence…….no problem, Now get to work MB!

    Shaker out!

    • Habitant in Surrey says:

      …Bournival ? …He’s a kid just gettin’ started My friend

      …He’s gonna be a keeper

    • CJ says:

      Based on play this season, Moen deserves to stay on through the duration of his contract. They can reassess next season. He doesn’t have the greatest hands, but he is an effective penalty killer, a big body and can stick up for teammates.

  26. jols101 says:

    Dogs hold on for a 2-1 victory- just barely. Tokarski was the hero in the end. Frantic pressure after the Heat pulled their goalie.

    He would make a great backup if we ever parted ways with Budaj.

  27. jols101 says:

    Watching the Abbotsford Heat vs the Bulldogs. 2-0 Dogs after 2. Dogs are playing a really solid game but no one is standing out.
    The Heat have a player named La franchise. No joke. I guess if his name was accurate he wouldn’t be playing in the AHL.

  28. habs001 says:

    Plecks could have been a Selke candidate every year if he would have dedicated himself at being better at faceoffs but he is totally unreliable at winning key draws..

    • RiverviewCanadien says:

      I agree, he was better when he was playing like a switch-drawer(sp?-new word) He is capable of reading the other guy…why is he not faking them out more and reversing the draw…it seriously can’t be any worse than the last 2GP.

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

  29. RiverviewCanadien says:

    Think about it…wouldn’t it be nice to have PK immortalized among the greats of this club? Etched forever in time doing that one-knee, bow and arrow celebration…What a great player he is turning out to be, got a feeling he will be one of the best.

    But to stir the pot with all the famous builders on this site, Plekanec should be the next captain (most complete player the Habs have drafted in a long time), followed by PK until he retires. Those two players kick tuckus.

    Go Habs Go!

    PS this doesn’t mean other players are not kicking tuckus right now (e.g. Pacioretty totally is…come on man!)

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

    • SlovakHab says:

      But does any of these 2 talk as much as Josh Gorges on 24CH?
      This must be taken into account.

      • RiverviewCanadien says:

        There are enough talkers in this sport as there is. Sometimes…it’s true…less is more. Ask Burke and Burnside.

        Maybe I’m wrong and players need a pep rally all the time…speaking of which, where is Armstrong? Loved his character and voice, but sometimes, that’s not enough.

        I like players who can do everything and help mentor others, the Markov type players (ok Crosby is just a way better analogy). Drafted, loyal, do-whatever-role-for-the-team players. Who excel.

        And Plekanec is my favorite player, so yeah, I am bias. Sue me.

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

      • RiverviewCanadien says:

        Oh and Pleks and PK both do all the talking on the ice baby!

        As the Nature Boy would say Wooooo!

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

    • Plekasuares says:

      Pleky for captain!!! Wooo! Join the revolution Sir

  30. GL says:

    I think it’s time they put our future line together and leave it that way till season ends.

    Pacioretty Galchenyuk Gallagher

    The other three lines may look something like this:

    Bournival Pleks Gionta
    Bourque DD Eller
    Moen White Prust

    • The_Truth says:

      DD, Max and Gally are doing great. The best line by far. Why break it up? Chucky isn’t ready to be a center yet anyway. He’s struggling a bit defensively on the wing a sit is and needs more experience.

      You can’t have DD and Eller on the same line, since both are centers.

    • SlovakHab says:

      It would be a nice exploitation line.

      Pleky line, Eller line and White with Moen and Prust can definitely take on tougher assignments, and these 3 guys could look and score nicely with favourable opponents and lots of o-zone starts.

      However, moving Pacioretty from his line makes DD absolutely useless. He basically becomes another Briere. We need to deal with both of these players and simply not have them in our lineup in order to move to the next step.

      Even a mediocre wingers with size like Drew Stafford would suit us so much better than these 2.

      DD has been good recently, but I would see it more as a blessing in order to quickly unload him, rather than a sign that he is a useful player on a real contender.

      • The_Truth says:

        DD is the only one putting up points right now, with Max. I wouldn’t be so quick to disregard him. He looks back to his form from 2 years ago and a guy who can do that is quite useful.

        • SlovakHab says:

          He puts up points thanks to PK Subban and Max Pacioretty being elite.
          I’d rather not have a player of his type on my favourite team, to be honest.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      YA! And call it the DaneGGer Line!!!

  31. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …I graded Our Habs an A

    …not based on ‘overall quality and high-end skill-sets’, but indeed because of Their exceeding despite ‘overall’ quality and high-end skill-sets’

    …We have a Team with an A-class quality of heart and character that plays close-knit and well-above Their average natural skills and, dare I say it, ‘size’

    …for that I must give Them an A

    • Habcouver says:

      I know what you mean. It’s like the old school grading system, where I would give the Habs, say a “B” for work… and a “G” (or your “A” for work habits.

      I always told my kids the work habit grade was more important than the “A” or “C+”.

      Waiting patiently for #25

  32. Plekasuares says:

    If im in that room im telling Gorges to STFU

  33. CH Marshall says:

    wow Gorges really is vocal in the room

    • CJ says:

      He certainly is. This is a common theme among all 24CH episodes. Funny, you almost never hear Gionta speak. I’ve heard Ryan White speak up with greater frequency. Mind you, it’s an edited program, but makes you wonder what the future might hold for the captain. I can’t imagine him being resigned. Frankly, he might not make the end of this season.

      • CH Marshall says:

        Yeah you see Gionta not saying much and Gorges just cheerleading. … and just saw a weird scene with the four french speaking coaches ribbing Gallant about some saying in english or something. I’m not liking what that suggests

  34. CH Marshall says:

    24CH on TSN right now…… some of the players’ wives are so hot

  35. CJ says:

    Dogs up 1-0. Nattinen with another assist.

  36. Willy the bum says:

    I’ve never realized how some of you guys here are real Canadians when you criticized the roster picks for Team USA… :D

  37. EricInStL says:

    Reading the Burnside article about how the USA team was chosen, I can only imagine what Team Canada is thinking about the players. But one thing is for sure, nobody is willing to roll the dice on a player who is either a wild card or perceived to be one. For that reason, I think there is a big chance PK might not be part of the team. I think what Burke said the he dreamed that Seth Jones cost them a medal is probably the same dream Yzerman has about PK. Please HIO IT guys get the servers ready for the volume on tuesday.

  38. Habmyster says:

    Burke is a bully who thrives on attention.He does not do or say things without a purpose. But people in the hockey world always circle the wagons because Burkie is part of the OLD BOYS club.Why do you think that Fred Shero son is part of the US selection committee.

  39. CJ says:

    I had the chance to watch a little of the 67’s and Spitfire game tonight featuring Brady Vail. Although he doesn’t get a lot of press here, I really like his game. He has some size and is terrific in all three zones. I have read his story, moving from Florida to Michigan to play ice hockey. Very cool. Not the first time I’ve seen him play this evening, but certainly the best impression that I have been left with based on the 6 or 7 games in which I’ve seen him play on television.

    Anyway, thought I’d share.

  40. JohnBellyful says:

    To be fair to Lupul, it was snowing. Quite a lot. Made visibility poor. He probably thought he was pushing himself away from the boards.
    These things happen when you play outdoors.
    In a blizzard.
    Without wipers on your shield.

  41. Plekasuares says:

    Briere traded et *yawn*

  42. rljmartin says:

    Funny, the NHL Lupul announcement says nothing about cross-check to the SIDE OF THE HEAD!

  43. DipsyDoodler says:

    If anyone knows someone who knows someone who knows Bobby Ryan (the Kevin Bacon game you know?) please please tell him to say the following next time someone puts a microphone in front of his face:

    “Brian Burke can’t spell fidelity. That word is not in his vocabulary. It’s never going to be in his vocabulary. He can’t spell faithful. And it’s not just a lack of general knowledge because he has no problem with adultery, a more difficult word by any measure.”

    • Habcouver says:

      I’m trying to fathom (I like that word) what Burkie has to gain from stiffing Ryan.

      It would be politically correct for him to apologize, not Murray, but hey… who knows what is going through his mind.

      Waiting patiently for #25

    • The Jackal says:

      ROFL, this Brian Burke thing is getting more attention than it deserves and is stirring up almost as much debate as whatever MT has to say about PK on a given day.

      What is wrong with what Burkie said? He spoke his mind at a meeting with his peers and it happened that a journalist chose to quote a particular thing he said in his report. Big deal. All Burke said was that Ryan is not an intense player. He also said he is a game-breaker and that his role would have to be in the top 6, basically saying that if that is not where he will play, then he won’t be effective playing more of a checking and defensive role, what the hell is wrong with that?

      And why is there no uproar with the Team USA folks who said Yandle is a disaster waiting to happen, whenever he is on the ice the other team is excited. IMO that is way more insulting than what Burke said. It appears that what Burke said is only getting attention because it was Burke who said it.

      ______________________
      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

      • Habitant in Surrey says:

        …that’s the way I see it too

      • CJ says:

        Hammer meet nail. You sir, have perfectly summed up my feeling on the subject. The bigger issue ought to be the omission of Bishop.

      • Pieboy says:

        It was unnecessary and gratuitously hurtful. That’s what’s wrong with it. Ryan is a good player who no doubt is proud. He likely felt bad enough about not making the team without being insulted. This isn’t an example of a well paid, under-performing player who faces the music a la Gomez or Bourque.

        • dr. gesundheit says:

          Let’s try and keep things in perspective. These are big boys playing for $millions/season…aren’t we being a tad sensitive? Insulting? Gratuitiously hurtful…really? Am I being an insensitive brute by not picking up on the insensitivity or the insult?
          Even if there was a mild suggestion concerning one’s work ethic heaven help us should any one of these highly privileged young atheletes have their pride take a bit of a hit,

          I have no issue with what Burke said and neither should Ryan.

      • D Mex says:

        The man is a blow hard who doesn’t know shite from shine-ola. His stint in TO is evidence of that and the Cup that he is credited with ” winning ” in Disneyland was the work of his predecessor.

        His comments about Ryan amount to kicking a guy when he’s down and then rubbing it in. It’s classless, boorish and textbook Burke.

        ALWAYS Habs –
        D Mex

  44. boing007 says:

    Say Hey PK!

    Richard R

  45. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Apologies to any who’ve seen it already. This is the Lupul cross-check (it wasn’t available on youtube earlier today):

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

  46. Lafleurguy says:

    @L.B.Potter
    The new Bolshevik way is Polonium.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      People in Gander, the Azores and Shannon are gathering their children protectively as they cower from the sound of that supersonic transatlantic whooooooooooooooooooooooosh!

  47. Dulljerk says:

    I don’t get this. Why is it with the plus/minus stats, they type it this way:

    plus-13

    when they could just put +13

    I just don’t get it. minus -13 should just be -13

    No eternal reward will forgive us for wasting the dawn.

    • Le Jadester says:

      Haha…….so true.
      I’ve always thought that too.

      Habs, OLE !

    • Habcouver says:

      My guess is the +/- creator was a program was overly concerned we’d get confused and would need hockey fans to talk about the proper disclosure so as to make the statistic that much more important and relevant to the game.

      Did “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” disturb anyone to a point of thinking we need a change?

      Waiting patiently for #25

  48. Habcouver says:

    Donboyne Mike,
    Thanks for your reply on the prior discussion regarding the cost of trading a captain. I agree that the impact on the team could and would be devastating to the team’s performance and upcoming playoff run.
    Gionta has lead by example to the best of his ability – and no one (not even Timo… maybe) can take that away from him.

    I appreciate everyone’s unique perspective and passion to see our Habs become the elite powerhouse soon.

    Waiting patiently for #25

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Cheers Habcouver. But yikes, that discussion feels like about a month ago already!

    • Le Jadester says:

      I think the Habs will have a better chance of becoming a powerhouse sooner, rather than later, by locking up PK long term and making him captain.

      Pretty simple IMO.

      Habs, OLE !

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        “PK for captain” has previously stirred up some good debates here. Although many more knowledgeable than I disagree, I myself would like to see him captain, but just not for another 2-3 years. However, by that stage the window of opportunity might have closed.

        • Habcouver says:

          PK would lead by example and it will rub off on his team mates. If he’s not given the opportunity here, I believe another team will if he’s traded.

          Waiting patiently for #25

        • D Mex says:

          My take is that putting the “C” on PK could stir up the ‘ polarizing ‘ theme that was rampant here – and elsewhere – not that long ago.

          Larry Robinson brought much more to the team than PK does and he wore an “A”. I think that would be more than suffice to acknowledge any leadership PK may bring to this team. 2¢ …

          ALWAYS Habs –
          D Mex

  49. thehabsfan29 says:

    I Have a feeling Briere is gonna get traded soon to one of the teams that offered him the same contract as we do.

    Really hope we get a decent forward in return but not getting my hopes up

    • Lafleurguy says:

      Unconfirmed fair market value for Briere these days is a 5th to 7th rounder or another over-30 struggling player. I don’t think Carolina would have accepted him for Tim Gleason, so one would look at players of lesser ability than Gleason. (Gleason’s contract is in the 4 mill range)
      (Anyone who thinks I sounded like Darren Dreger….thanks!)

      “May you live in interesting times.”

      • thehabsfan29 says:

        I Actually think Carolina would have taken Briere + Decent Prospect maybe Bennett for Gleason.

        They need offense and Briere is more useful to them then Liles.

  50. piper says:

    Just heard Lupul got only a fine. WTF? Accidentally catch a guys head with your shoulder and get 4 games. A repeat offender deliberately retaliates with a crosscheck to the head and gets a fine. Joke!!!

  51. Lafleurguy says:

    There is a Tea Party faction within the HIO community.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  52. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Trini!
    The final comment on the last page of ALN is you, all by yourself. Nice one!

  53. Timo says:

    LOL, there is only one guy on the Sabres roster that has a plus (1) +/-

  54. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    If you’re judging the Habs against the East…around B to B+. If you’re judging the Habs against the whole league…C+ to B-.

    B is reasonable.

    • Timo says:

      What if you’re judging the Habs against their ability to win the Stanley Cup?

      • PrimeTime says:

        Fans are not qualified to “judge”, only to witness.

        • Phil C says:

          Some fans are. Its hockey, not rocket science. I think someone needs a Venn diagram.

        • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

          We’re just answering a question that was posted to us…

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          Would this then be your vision of HIO, PT?

          Maritime Ronn: Good morning, all. I saw the game.

          Habs109012: Morning. I saw it as well.

          Timo: So did I. I saw the game. I’m not saying anything else.

          Burly: Yes, me too.

          Mike Boone [in red]: I agree.

          Dipsydoodler: Hey! Don’t leave me out! I, too, saw the game.

          Habstrinifan: I saw the game AND I saw Coach’s Corner.

          Maritime Ronn: I did not see Coach’s Corner.

          Timo: Oh, I forgot. I also saw Coach’s Corner.

          Mattyleg: Hi Timo. I don’t believe you actually saw Coach’s Corner.

          Timo: Are you judging me, Matty? Mods! MODS!

          Mattyleg: Timo I believe we can judge other posters, just not hockey games or teams or players.

          Lafleurguy: I saw the game. I have an opinion about the 3rd period.

          Burly: Careful!

          Habs109012: Careful!

          Dipsydoodler: I also have an opinion. How about we exchange them at the Summit next October?

          Lafleurguy: You’re on!

          [winking yellow smiley face]

      • DDO_Habs_Fan says:

        Not good…and you don’t have to be an expert to know that.

  55. The Jackal says:

    So much vitriol and irrational commentary about the Habs being crap, MT sucking, and MB having no clue, that you’d think the modal grade would be D!

    Good to see that 72% of respondents think the Habs were good or excellent. Then 25% thought they were average – that’s what C means. From these results we can infer that the aforementioned vitriol seems to come from the extremely loud but tiny minority. Of course, some of those comments can come in moments of panic from the 72% group but interesting results nonetheless. You read the comments here and you’d think the average grade is D.

    ______________________
    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Evening Jackel. I think if they asked the question after a loss it may very well be a D majority. We’re a weather vane fan base. We love our team with passion but we want instant results.

      Sign of the times?

    • HardHabits says:

      Yes but 91% thought they were good or mediocre.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      There have been other areas where there has existed an interesting disparity between the “virtually” vocal and the more tacit onlookers, eg fighting. The topic of fighting has produced some well-argued and robust discussions here, lots of to and fro and apparently equal division. Yet as I recall, the relevant poll indicated a significant majority of keeping fighting.

  56. 24 Cups says:

    A grade of “B” seems spot on.

  57. Thurston says:

    Eklund update. Read at your own risk (or if you want to be amused):

    * The Canadiens are in need of some changes and I would not be shocked at all to see a move by the end of the weekend.

  58. Habfan17 says:

    Why would the Sabres claim Konopka when they already have Scott? Is there a potential deal with the Habs and MB knew Konopka would not make it through to where he could claim him.

    I think the next two months could be interesting trade wise for the Habs. Just a feeling.

    Habfan17

    • CranbrookEd says:

      I like this thinking . . . especially with Parros perhaps about to retire . . . it is actually the tkype of “planning” that is required to be successful for an NHL GM . . . will tuck this away for possible future reference! :)

      CranbrookEd
      Mr. Beliveau: “Pure Pak mais oui”! . . .

  59. durocher says:

    Burke should apologize, not just David “Just For Men” Poile

    • Habilis says:

      He’s tried to talk to him, Burke called and texted Ryan but Ryan won’t return his call.

      IMO, Burke should and will say something to Ryan but he doesn’t have to apologize for what he said, that’s for sure. Maybe he’s sorry that it came out the way it did, but he shouldn’t be sorry for speaking his mind while picking a hockey team to represent his country. He was doing his job, no need to be sorry about that.

      • EnemyTerritory says:

        True, but Burke could make those selections and voice his opinions with a modicum of class. Poile, Lavoilette, Lombardi et al … do so (per the Burnside article) without lowering the debate to schoolyard nonsense. In my humble opinion, that type of language (he can’t spell intensity etc …) does require an apology. He might be sorry it came out; but he should be sorry that he said it at all. Just my $0.02 worth.

        • Habilis says:

          That’s fair, and if we were talking about most GM’s, I’d agree. But this is Brian Burke. He’s like this, he has no filter. He has admitted as much on several occasions and everyone has known about it for years now. You get what you see with him. He’s belligerent, loud, opinionated and stubborn. But he’s also a pretty decent hockey mind, at least by American standards. You want the hockey guy, you get the bully.

          I’m not condoning the way he expressed himself, he certainly could have chosen his words more carefully. But I also don’t believe that he would say those things knowing they might be published. He’s a pretty smart guy and well spoken when he wants to be. He just had his guard down in those quotes.

      • Habfan17 says:

        Sorry he does need to apologise. Had he left it at, ” He would not be on the top two lines and his style doesn’t lend itself to being on the bottom two. He would need to be a top 6 and with the players available, we felt he was not.” That would be acceptable. saying, ” he is not intense and can’t spell intense” was crossing the line and that is why he needs to apologise. He made it very personal.

        Habfan17

        • The Jackal says:

          I’m sure it hurts to hear those comments if you are that player but he wasn’t saying anything insulting, he just expressed what the rest of Team USA execs thought.

          ______________________
          Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  60. Harditya says:

    Who is the guy that voted F on the poll?! Cmon man seriously? Hahah. The team deserves a B. C should be the lowest anyone should be giving them.

  61. twilighthours says:

    Bugs pops in for 10 minutes a week and steals the show.

  62. Danno says:

    Brian Burke the Blowhard

    ________________________________________

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

    • bwoar says:

      For the record, he’s 100% right about Ryan. That much is lost in the rush to make fun of Burke. He’s right.

      “thoroughbred”

      • The Jackal says:

        I agree… and it’s funny how they are saying he trashed Ryan when he said he was a gamebreaker and that other players can’t do what he does. Team USA simply decided to leave him off because he would not have been used effectively, makes sense. Besides, Burke was for having him on the team he just qualified his inclusion by saying Ryan needs to be on the top 6 and on the PP if he is gonna be effective on that team.

        ______________________
        Hockey sine stercore tauri.

        • bwoar says:

          Well, they were complete idiots not to bring him, and use him properly, but the ‘lack of intensity’ comment was spot on.

          “thoroughbred”

        • Habfan17 says:

          Except that Burke went on to say he was intense and could not even spell intense. Up until then, I could give Burke a by, that was disrespectful and crossed a line.

          Habfan17

          • The Jackal says:

            How did it cross a line? He said he is a very good player but one that does not play with intensity, and clearly Burke isn’t the only member of Team USA brass that thinks that. What’s wrong with making that observation?

            And Bwoar, I don’t know if that was a bad move. In hindsight, if the US has a hard time scoring, well… then it will be easier to say it was a stupid thing to do. But team chemistry is important and I think it was smart to put together a team that will work well as a cohesive unit and that can play a 60 minute game with speed and intensity.

            Team USA is looking good.

            ______________________
            Hockey sine stercore tauri.

          • Habfan17 says:

            @ The Jackal

            It would have been fine if all he said was he was not intense, saying that he can’t even spell intense crossed a line and made it personal. That was not needed. Burke is a jerk.

            Habfan17

    • CH Marshall says:

      I just want DD to spell intense on Saturday

  63. Timo says:

    So what happened to White? It’s a few times that I’ve heard “White” and “hurt long term” but no info about what’s with him?

  64. on2ndthought says:

    OK, IF MB and MT are tired of Briere, then Zonopka/Briere or Leino/Briere are possibilities, especially if White is hurt long-term.
    The Sabres will not give up anything except to trade one contract that isn’t working for another. If we get Leino expect Bourque the 2nd: size and talent and the feeling you’re missing something.

    I still say we got Danny to score in the playoffs and he hasn’t disappointed us there – yet!
    “a cannonading drive”

  65. Mattyleg says:

    About halfway through last night, I was wondering if Boone and the louder sectors of the Commentariat were pleased that they were finally getting ‘ENTERTAINING’ hockey.

    I certainly wasn’t.

    It was nice seeing PK making plays and opening up a bit, but I realised that I missed the close, smart hockey that we play so well. I’m not a fan of Tortorella Firewagon Hockey. It never ends well in the long run.

    Great win, though; proud of our guys, and very impressed with DD.

    How many people still wish we didn’t have him?

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • habsfan0 says:

      Don Cherry claims we’re lucky to have DD.
      Which makes me extremely leery.

      • IdleNoMore says:

        Maybe he ment to say the leafs are lucky not to have DD

        “He was chewing Juicy Fruit gum, I didn’t know whether to shake his hand or kiss him”

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I loved seeing PK creating out on the ice. It’s what I love about the game. Players with out of this world skill displaying it.

    • bwoar says:

      Some of us like our entertainment to be entertaining. I mostly watch 3rd periods only lately because I can’t be bothered to waste time on the kind of hockey you enjoy. Losing 2-1. 3-2. Shootout 2-1. That kind of thing. Just fine in the playoffs when it’s intense but not for 82 games of grinding, no-excuses, not-really-a-meritocracy-more-like-idiocracy hockey. Boring hockey isn’t worth watching. The NHL gets it; they just fill the space with goonery and water cooler BS like how long should so-and-so be suspended. Pathetic but the alternative is to have Too Many Skilled Players on the Ice, which makes it hard for US fans to follow.

      To each his own Matty, but I much prefer the firewagon, or even the late-90’s non-obstruction New NHL ™ that brought me back to hockey after cursing the league forever.

      “thoroughbred”

      • Mattyleg says:

        Unfortunatley, as I’ve said before, Bwoar, watching sports isn’t entertainment. It’s varying degrees of suffering. If you want entertainment, watch wrestling. Heck, WWE even has it in the name of the league!

        I don’t like losses. I like wins. I’ll take a 2-1 win any day over a 6-5 win.

        And just watching 3rd periods? That’s a bit odd. I could never do that. Love the Habs too much.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • habcertain says:

          “watching sports isn’t entertainment” hmm…certainly explains a lot.

        • bwoar says:

          See, that sounds like Stockholm Syndrome right there Matty. You love them too much to disconnect from something that you frankly consider to be varying degrees of suffering.

          Me, I prefer drinking bourbon, jamming, writing and reading to my children over 40 minutes of B.S. mind-numbing suffering. If it improves from that, I may watch more full games. I only ever watch full games when I’m out with friends NOT doing music and just kicking back, which isn’t that often anymore with a growing family to tend. With so little “spare” time (what a silly notion, that we actually have time to spare) I don’t want to waste it on soul-crushing hockey addictions. That was my breakthrough for 2013. Save it for the playoffs.

          The days of watching 200+ games are over!

          “thoroughbred”

        • Mustang says:

          Matty, I have to admit that I like fire wagon hockey but of course more than anything, I want the Habs to win.

          Pro sports today is pure entertainment based on one fact, that is the obscene amount of money that the athletes are paid. If this was not entertainment, there is no way in the world that these guys would get one tenth of what they are now paid.

    • FlyAngler says:

      You make a valid point about the style of play Matty, but that is precisely the style of play that DD thrives in. When he is up against a big physical centreman and the checking is tight, he doesn’t perform like he did last night. I am glad that he is playing better, but I would certainly trade him if we could get decent return and quite frankly, I think that a mid-level prospect and a second rounder would be about right.

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

    • CH Marshall says:

      Nothing wrong about playing tight, but for me it’s entertaining when we play with speed and puck possession, or should I say in a style that we are more built for.

    • twilighthours says:

      I enjoyed that game more than any since the Toronto beating. And I am glad we have DD

    • Et le but says:

      The way he is currently playing, DD is full value for his contract; earlier in the season and for long stretches in last year’s strike shortened campaign, not so much so.

      Hope he continues on his current pace!

    • VancouverHab says:

      Count me as one.

  66. The Teacher says:

    Anyone else notice konopka picked off waivers by none other than buffalo. Interesting eh.

  67. habsfan0 says:

    No suspension for Joffrey Lupul,just a $10,000 fine.
    Even The Fan590 in Toronto claims he deserved one.

    • Mattyleg says:

      I don’t get that.
      What’s the difference between a fineable offence and a suspendable one?

      If you’re suspended, do you get fined too?
      I’m sure most players would rather pay the fine…
      Bizarre.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • von says:

        I’m not an expert regarding the CBA, but my understanding is that when you are suspended for a game(s), you forfeit that portion of your salary. So it’s kind of like a fine…

        _________________________________

        “Obviously it would be great, but they don’t really hang conference titles in this rink. They raise Stanley Cup banners.” – Carey Price

    • JUST ME says:

      He should have been treated as a repeat offender since he was caught last year so such a light verdict is strange to say the least.
      I am not even sure that in those cases the player really pays the fine and that in a way the team does not chip in…

      • twilighthours says:

        And totally malicious. He got hit, got angry, and went after someone. Not even close to a “hockey play”

        (I don’t know what the phrase “hockey play” actually means)

  68. volcano62 says:

    Briere, Diaz and a second rounder for Ott and Moulson. It’s almost finalized guys!

  69. jimmy shaker says:

    The boys need 6 more wins in a row for a nice solid 30-14-4.

    Shaker out!

  70. IdleNoMore says:

    Slow at the casino what can I say

    “He was chewing Juicy Fruit gum, I didn’t know whether to shake his hand or kiss him”

  71. CJ says:

    Parental leave…..what can I say


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