Habs will be going for sweep in Game 4 Tuesday

Before the NHL playoffs started, the people at EA Sports did a playoff simulation with the NHL 14 video game and had the Canadiens sweeping the Tampa Bay Lightning in their Eastern Conference quarter-final series.

That could now happen in reality as the Canadiens take a 3-0 series lead into Game 4 Tuesday night at the Bell Centre (7 p.m., CBC, RDS, TSN Radio 690).

The video-game simulation had the Canadiens losing in five games to the Boston Bruins in the Eastern Conference semifinals.

The Canadiens’ Brendan Gallagher offered a word of caution when he was asked whether the Canadiens were in control of the series after Sunday night’s 3-2 win in Game 3.

“Everyone knows the fourth game is the hardest to win,” he said.

The Canadiens practised at noon Monday in Brossard without defencemen Andrei Markov and Alexei Emelin, who both took therapy days. The forward lines remained the same at practice as they have been for the first three games.

“We understand that we haven’t done anything yet,” defenceman Josh Gorges told reporters in Brossard after practice. “You need to win four games to win a series and we all know the fourth win is always the hardest. We can’t get ahead of ourselves by any means because we still haven’t accomplished anything. Our focus has to be like it has been the first three games on playing the right way, playing a complete game and doing all the little things well. At the end of the day, we’ll look back on how the game went and move on from there.”

The Lightning held an optional practice at noon Monday at the Bell Centre.

“(If) we play with the passion and determination we played with last night, I truly believe there’s really not much more wrong that can go against us,” Lightning coach Jon Cooper told reporters after practice. “I think at some point karma is going to come around. You just need it for one night. All of a sudden now—you’ve just got to win one. And then you win that one and everybody is back on a plane. Who knows what happens after that.

“The one thing I really appreciate about our team is nobody is hanging their head,” he added. “Nobody is feeling sorry for themselves.”

On the status of No. 1 goalie Ben Bishop, who has missed the first three games with an elbow injury, Cooper said: “He won’t be ready for Game 4. I can’t sit here and say if he’d be ready for the rest of the series. Clearly we’d have to extend the series for any hope of that. Every day he is getting closer and closer, but no Game 4.”

Lightning sniper Steven Stamkos said he felt “pretty good” after practice Monday and expects to play in Game 4. Stamkos missed the last 3:51 of the second period of Game 3 after taking an inadvertent knee to the head from Canadiens defenceman Alexei Emelin. Stamkos went to the locker room, but returned for the third period.

“It was just a weird play,” Stamkos said after the game. “I didn’t feel quite right. Obviously, I was good enough to come back in. We’ll see how it goes (Monday).”

The Canadiens called up 10 players from the AHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs on Sunday: goaltenders Devan Dubnyk and Dustin Tokarski; forwards Sven Andrighetto, Mike Blunden, Gabriel Dumont, Louis Leblanc and Christian Thomas; and defencemen Nathan Beaulieu, Davis Drewiske and Greg Pateryn.  They will practise this week, starting Tuesday, in Brossard with the Bulldogs’ coaching staff.

The Bulldogs failed to make the AHL playoffs, finishing last in the North Division with a 33-35-8 record.

Here’s how the Habs lines looked at practice:


(Photo by Dario Ayala/The Gazette)

(Video from Habs practice by Allen McInnis/The Gazette)

(Locker-room videos by The Gazette’s Brenda Branswell)



Game 4 preview, NHL.com

Canadiens ‘riding that wave,’ Eller says, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

Vanek soaks up city’s playoff vibe, by The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs

Stamkos, Lightning recharge for Game 4 by The Gazette’s Brenda Branswell

Eller, Bourque step up, NHL.com

Business as usual for Habs after Game 3, Canadiens.com

Post-practice interviews (video), Canadiens.com

Lightning practice notebook, tampabaylightning.com

Stamkos expected to play in Game 4, NHL.com

Habs put home-ice stranglehold on Lightning, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

A night to remember at Bell Centre, by The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs

Subban, Bourque escape from coach’s doghouse, by Jack Todd

Subban atones for early penalty, by Pat Hickey

Electric atmosphere at Bell Centre, by The Gazette’s Brenda Branswell

Habs sweep Lightning in playoff simulation, Stu on Sports blog

Habs fans photo gallery, montrealgazette.com

Comforts of home, Canadiens.com

Canadiens edge Lightning, take 3-0 series lead, NHL.com

Subban sparks Canadiens with highlight-reel assist, NHL.com

Bourque lights the lamp 11 seconds in (video), NHL.com

Lightning fall behind 3-0, Tampa Bay Times

Bad call ruins Lightning effort, Tampa Bay Times

Stamkos returns after head hit, Tampa Bay Times

Canadiens recall 10 from Bulldogs, hamiltonbulldogs.com



  1. frontenac1 says:

    Hey amigos. Why can baseball have bench clearing brawls and NHL hockey can”t? I mean,really baseball? Maybe I’ll start watching it again.

  2. twilighthours says:

    Meb Keflezighi wins Boston. First American since 1983. That’s a great story.

    • FlyAngler says:

      Naturalized American. Native of Eritrea, really not much different than a Kenyan winning it again. But kudos, it is a great accomplishment.

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

      • Chris says:

        His family emigrated to the US in 1987, when he was 12 years old. I would argue that he is pretty darned American given that most of his formative training was done in the United States.

  3. JF says:

    I seriously doubt that we will be getting the sweep in this series. As both Gallagher and Gorges reminded us, the fourth game is the hardest to win. For the team up 3-0, it’s almost impossible not to be looking ahead a tiny bit to what comes next; whereas the team on the losing end has little more to lose and will simply go out there and give it their all.

    Quite apart from the difficulty of winning the fourth game, the Lightning played by far their best game of the series last night. They all seemed stunned to start the game, Lindback in particular looking frozen on Bourque’s shot; but once they got going, they were very dangerous. I imagine they’ll be much more ready to start Game four, not nervous or overwhelmed by the Bell Centre atmosphere, not to mention that breath-taking pre-game show. If they score first and Lindback plays as well as he did after the first goal last night, it’ll be a tough game for the Habs to win.

    • Chris says:

      This is a series that could very easily be 3-0 Montreal, 2-1 Montreal or 2-1 Tampa Bay. With one game going to overtime and last night’s game potentially going either way, I don’t think any of the Habs need to be reminded that while they are in a great position, it hasn’t come easy.

      I thought this was going to be a 6- or 7-game series coming in, so I am pleasantly surprised to see Montreal up 3-0. But like you, it would really shock me to see the Habs sweep the Lightning.

      • DipsyDoodler says:

        Nah, it’s over. They think they were robbed but in fact they were pretty well outplayed and only Lindback kept it close.

        If Cooper thinks they should just do what they did last night in the next game it’ll be a fairly simple matter for us to sweep them.

        Moving. Forward.

  4. Timo says:

    I love how the ROC is crying that Habs are getting “all the breaks” from the refs.

  5. twilighthours says:

    “(If) we play with the passion and determination we played with last night, I truly believe there’s really not much more wrong that can go against us…”

    I don’t know if he’s trying to draw attention to himself, as Ronn suggests, or if he actually believes this. Either way, he’s starting to sound like a whiner.

    Time to put this horse out to pasture.

  6. frontenac1 says:

    Something about “Fat Ladies Singing” that re-aligns the Chakra or Karma or Kama Sutra or something.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Evening, Front.
      Are you sure Lucic would still not dance with Parros? Previously, no way. But now that Parros looks vulnerable following 2 concussions, does he not make an ideal target for the yellow Lucic?

  7. Timo says:

    Man, I hate this sense of over confidence that Habs will win this series. I’ve been caught up in that too. While chances they will win are big still… it ain’t over till it’s over. Where is Boone when you need him?

  8. kalevine says:

    While I do believe Habs were robbed by the refs in Game 4 last year, I also believe, unlike some here, that the Sens were by far the better team, and would have won the series, if not that game, with or without the kick in call. As I remember, they were pouring it on the whole period, and it seemed just a matter of time. Similarly, last night, Tampa may have taken a 2-1 lead but that would not necessarily have guaranteed them the win. It seems like the habs’ series, like last years’ was the Sens’. So let’s not get too crazy about the reffing one way or the other At the same time, let’s cross our fingers that, should we go to a 7th game at some point in thee playoffs, that the winner is not decided by a close call in any direction. 🙂

  9. Dr.Rex says:

    A lot of questions about who sits if Glachenyuk and Moen return. For the rest of this series the lineup will stay the same unless we begin to slip up.

    Moving forward it all depends on who we play. If we play Boston then you will see players like Moen, White and Murray inserted in the lineup but if we play Detroit then the lineup will stay the same with perhaps a healthy Galchenyuk in for Bourny.

  10. CHicoHab says:

    Subban gets booed just for stepping on the ice. Let’s give the distraught ones a violin for being pissed our fans booed when Stamkos got up. It’s not like he was profusely bleeding.

  11. naweed235 says:

    I don’t understand why everyone is so quick to just assume that it’s going to be the Bruins who are coming out as victors from the first round. You do realize that Detroit is a team with a far superior hockey IQ (or general IQ for that matter) than the Goons right?

  12. Danno says:

    Jon Cooper may have sealed Tampa’s fate when he chewed out the refs earlier in the game. The disallowed goal came after. Payback? Who knows?


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

  13. Timo says:

    Moen has been cleared for contact on Monday – http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=450011 (sorry, if it’s old news – but speaking of news, Habs traded Diaz to Vancouver)

    I wonder if all Habs make it out healthy out of the first round, will Moen be replacing anyone in the lineup or will he sit until either an injury or an implosion in game 1 vs Bruins.

  14. FlyAngler says:

    Any word on the Refs for game 4? Charron & Devorski had worked game 1 of the Boston – Detroit series before making the trek to MTL for game 3. I hope that this does not mean that the Habs get Chris Lee and Francois St. Laurent for game 4 since they worked game 2 in Boston. We are all too aware of the Habs history with Chris Lee- much more horrifying than his Dracula playing namesake on the big screen, and quite frankly I have found Francois St. Laurent to be the type of Quebecer Official who seizes every possible opportunity to demonstrate that he shows zero favoritism to the Habs to the point where he seems loathe to call penalties on the Habs opposition regardless. Hopefully, these two will NOT be in town tomorrow night and we will see a different pair………….

    “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

  15. CharlieHodgeFan says:

    I just spent about 10 minutes reading the conversation below. You know what I take away from it?
    Habs fans are having fun right now.

    It’s been awhile since I’ve been able to read for that long on HIO without a single expression of hate for one of the players or coaches on this team. I don’t mean to piss people off with that, or sound like an editor or something, but people are talking hockey again, and not belittling players and coaches. It’s a lot more interesting to read.

  16. habs-fan-84 says:

    Sorry if this has already been asked today (been crazy busy at work all day), but what ever happened to Charles Prévost Linton?

    I was disappointed not to see him last night.

    ps. Duncan Keith is an idiot.

    • FlyAngler says:

      I am with you Habs fan! Way too much showcasing of the glitterati! The Habs should either stick with Prevost Linton and Diane Bibaud on the organ or play a video of Roger Doucette singing the anthems on the jumbotron.

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

  17. jimmy shaker says:

    I know this is a crazy scenario, but if the boys do end up playing the cubs in the second round do you think MT has big enough berries to start Budashe in the TD gardens over Pricer, because of his exceptional record there, not to mention how he was a huge factor in beating the cubs in their own barn the last two time the boys were there. Carey’s record vs the cubs isn’t too shabby either, but Budashe is lights out in cubville. What a story that would make for this site let alone the hockey public. But could you imagine he does play Budashe in that first game and he wins……MAN, the world would turn upside down in hab nation!

    Shaker out!

  18. The Jackal says:

    I’m a fan of Cooper and Stamkos, they are great hockey people. Glad to be playing the Bolts – good series with good hockey and no goonery. No doubt things may be different with St. Louis and Bishop on that team, but TB would still be inexperienced from coach to roster.

    That inexperience is translating into frustration for TB. Stamkos and co. are clearly flummoxed by how the series has gone and Cooper, judging from his comments to the press, is caught up in it too. Cooper is showing signs of frustration rather than keeping calm and playing things out, and that is sending the wrong message to the players.

    Not to mention there seems to be a void in leadership and calming presence left by Marty. The players look downtrodden and I think they resent the trade. The mood in the TB room is bringing them down.

  19. Tseth says:

    I wonder if having Malone in the lineup for Tampa would’ve impacted the outcome. However, the fact that he isn’t playing due to his off-ice behavior indicates larger team and management issues.

    Vanek is a monster on the ice, and hope that the top line will bust loose soon. I love how angry he gets on the ice. You never see other top tier, scorers especially, bring that type of intensity.

    Go Habs!

    • Adidess says:

      Bishop being absent affects their play and helps our confidence at the same time. With Bishop in there, we probably don’t win that first game the way we played, which could have changed the allure of this series. Our boys never panicked when trailing in that first game because the fear factor of having to beat Bishop wasn’t there.

      Now, we have had good things going for us, as well. The biggest difference has proved to be our experience vis-à-vis Tampa and our surprise boon of secondary scoring.

      Go Team CHanada!

  20. Dunboyne Mike says:

    You are Cooper.
    What do you different in a desperate attempt to get back into the series?
    Or, do you reckon on sticking with the formula so far: it kept both games 1 and 3 close….

    • Maritime Ronn says:


      There is nothing to do
      It’s over.

      Coach Cooper should light a Cuban and go home to the beautiful shores of western Florida and enjoy himself.

      He bought a lot of ‘good will’ with the guys.
      He made sure the media focussed on him – on his calling out of the refs vs. answering questions about performance.

    • Lafleurguy says:

      He has pulled a lot of strings but the puppets aren’t performing: “D Sami Salo was a late scratch because of what the team called an upper-body injury. … D Mark Barberio became the 11th Lightning player to make his NHL playoff debut. Wings B.J. Crombeen and Tom Pyatt also played for the first time in the series
      Defensemen Keith Aulie and Mike Kostka, forwards Richard Panik and Nikita Kucherov, and G Ben Bishop (elbow) also were scratched.”
      (Tampa Bay Times).

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Talk to my GM about improving the defense in the off season. This is a good young team on the rise. They will return.

    • Timo says:

      You use one more game to try and make all your players better people.

    • Adidess says:

      What you do, I think, is acknowledge it could be over on Tuesday, and tell the guys to leave it all there on the ice if they don’t want to have too many regrets. ‘We’ve been unlucky in this series, but it’s not over. What if we do everything tonight to have one more game in Tampa? That’s our goal. Let’s go out there and do it for ourselves. Who knows what might happen after?’

      Do I believe Cooper will find a way to motivate them? Yes. Might they feel like quitting if the Habs jump on them early and score a couple? Very likely.

      Believe it or not, they will be playing looser the next game. And sometimes, that’s all a young team needs to play at their best. Maybe we start fearing an extra game at Tampa more than they fear losing this series now that they’re down 3-0. I feel fhey’re still a little bit dangerous.

      Go Team CHanada!

    • CharlieHodgeFan says:

      I would put clear plastic wrap over the top front of the net when the ice crew weren’t looking.
      I’d hire femme fatale types to tell some of the younger guys on the Habs to show off a little more of their individual talent – to stop this team crap and show some moves.
      I’d give amphetamines to all my d-men.
      I’d slaughter a chicken while chanting monotonously.

      Other than that, there’s not a lot to be tried.

  21. Habfan10912 says:

    Some heart wrenching scenes from the South Korean Ferry disaster. Sports provides a much needed diversion from such tragic events.

  22. jimmy shaker says:

    So good potential problems on the horizon……a healthy Moen near return and if the boys get into the second round; Chucky looks to be able to play as well. Nice problem to have for MT. Don’t know what he should do going into a second round with Moen, Chucky, White, Murray and Tinordi all available. I fear if he does make any changes danny b and bernie are the two players that could make way. i don’t like it, but i can see MT doing it. And on the backend I think Frankie is the only D-man that could make way as well, even though he has looked pretty good so far. I think White and Tinordi only see the ice if injuries start to mount.

    Shaker out

  23. Dunboyne Mike says:

    @Loop Garoo.
    From the last thread (re. conspiracy theories).
    That’s really interesting about your contact with refs, and is just the kind of real evidence that the conspiracy theory conversation needs, ie. what a Mulder like me needs to hear! Thanks for posting that.

    Still – and please don’t take this the wrong way – I’ll need more. “He who pays the piper calls the tune”, and I don’t see why that should apply any less to the NHL and it’s officials (including those in so-called Player Safety) than it does to food manufacturers who are less than honest with their packaging or to drug lords who instruct dealers to cut the product. Business is business.

    Consider all the corruption in organisations like national Olympic committees or in FIFA. It would be extraordinary if the NHL were above that.

    About the refs themselves: a) I don’t doubt for a second that they are good guys; b) hockey must be uniquely difficult to ref: no team sport is faster; grey areas abound; space is especially tight (compared to field games) and therefore harder to observe. I reckon most bad calls are simply due to hard it is to get calls right consistently.

    But when Marchand can punch Sedin repeatedly in the face after the whistle and no call follows, you just know that the “It’s-the-playoffs” memo has been circulated by head office, and the refs have no choice but to fall in. The NHL wants Marchand to punch Sedin.

    (I had to leave home for a few hours — what’s Dipsy’s excuse for dropping this discussion?)

    • Loop_Garoo says:

      There is no doubt that it gets loose in the playoffs as far as the calls go, and I like a good conspiracy theory, even if I often end up disagreeing with it. I just don’t see any evidence for a real conspiracy, and the potential for complete disaster is there for the NHL, if anything were to leak. If there were a conspiracy, they would tend to favor teams like Montreal that draw fans and viewers no matter what, and not work against Montreal.

    • Loop_Garoo says:

      You do raise a good point though about food manufacturers etc. I guess in the end, I think it would be to difficult to influence enough games on a large enough scale, that you would end up with the teams you chose moving on. It would be so overwhelmingly obvious that everyone would know, and the owners on the other side would be livid.

  24. Lafleurguy says:

    Courtesy of Damian Cristodero, Tampa Bay Times:
    Of the 175 NHL teams that have fallen behind 3-0 in a seven-game series, three have come back to win the series:

    Team Opp.YearRound

    Flyers Bruins 2010 East final
    IslesPens1975 Quarterfinals
    Leafs Wings 1942 Cup final

    98.3% chance Habs will win.

  25. Prop says:

    Watch the jobbing by the refs begin…

    Ryan Rishaug ‏@TSNRyanRishaug 36m
    Yzerman and Cooper seen having a lengthy chat with series supervisor Kay Whitmore at rink today.


    • habcertain says:

      we can expect a few quick calls against, would be fair.

      • LizardKing12 says:

        Don’t see how that “would be fair”. The refs got the call right. The optics aren’t particularly pleasing but it was called as the rule intends it to be called. If the refs come out and give the Bolts undeserved PPs as an effort to make up for that perceived bad called that would be terribly unprofessional and completely UNFAIR. The Habs are winning this series because they are deeper, are playing better team D, have better goaltending and are winning the possession battle, refs aren’t even in the conversation for reasons why we are dominating.

        • habcertain says:

          if that no goal call had gone against us, it would be non stop blather going on forever here, it was a big goal for them also. posters here constantly whine about the non calls on other teams, almost embarrassing sometimes.

          • Danno says:

            We have had more than our share of disallowed goals on questionable calls. Just sayin’.


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

          • habcertain says:

            kind of my point, it goes both ways, yeah you see a bad call, it is frustrating, but then you see yesterday’s game. I fully appreciate TB’s full court press to influence the next game, and wouldn’t doubt some soft calls.

          • LizardKing12 says:

            There is nothing wrong with complaining about a questionable call it is what fans do. What I am saying is that it is not fair for that to bleed into how the ref calls the game. After the controversial Zibanejab kick in goal last spring I don’t remember the Habs getting breaks from the refs the next game. The same thing should apply here. It is controversial in the eyes of fans and the Tampa organization and that isn’t surprising but the play was called correctly whether or not we’d have the same reaction if it would happen to us is irrelevant it doesn’t make Tampa getting biased officiating next game fair. What is fair is for the refs to call all games as consistently as possible, looking for make up calls and what not does more to screw with the balance of a game/series than just calling what are actually penalties.

  26. mdp2011 says:

    Here is the video of Duncan Keith telling Backes to “wakey-wakey”.

    Deadspin ‏@Deadspin 38m
    Just when you thought Blues-Blackhawks couldn’t get nastier, here’s Duncan Keith taunting a concussed David Backes: http://deadsp.in/pbbYkMw

  27. Lafleurguy says:

    Intermezzo comic relief, courtesy of Tampa Bay Times commentariat:
    Chocolate On Vanilla9 hours ago
    Mid-way through the third period, Bourque is mugged on a breakaway and draws a penalty. Tampa never regains possession and the puck is eventually tapped in the Lightning net. The goal is disallowed and no reason is given. Are you outraged about this call as well, Mr Jones?
    Reply 2 replies0
    REDDOGBLUEDOG44 hours ago
    seriously? the whistle blew like 5 seconds before the puck slid in. Even Peppy Lepieux could hear that..
    Reply 1 reply0
    Leclerc34 minutes ago
    FYI, its Pepe, not Peppy Einstein.
    Reply 0

    • Habfan10912 says:

      That’s too funny. Thanks for that find bud.

    • Chuck Kept Calm and Carey'd On says:

      The goal was disallowed because the whistle blew. Problem is that the whistle shod have never been blown because Tampa didn’t have possession.

      X X X 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Good catch Sam Boni

    • Lafleurguy says:

      Blue Steel6 hours ago
      Interesting to see Montreal fans show their true “low class” selves….booing Stamkos after he got up from taking an unnecessary knee to the head. Only shows how low and desperate that fan base has fallen seeing how that POS team needs “homer” refs to give them every call and disallow a good goal so they can get to the next round. I guess that’s what needs to happen seeing how Montreal hasn’t won the Cup in over 20 years.
      Reply 1 reply0
      –Kath35 minutes ago
      I was not happy to hear booing for Stamkos. But then again, in the Forum, we had morons yelling USA so..

  28. CHicoHab says:

    Habs at home always trying to be pretty and score the perfect goal. Not sure why this mentality exists. If they shoot more often than not it may not be an instant goal but a better chance to get one. MT has to drill this into their heads. As for the PP it won’t get better these playoffs. So we just need accept it is what it is.

    • 44har48 says:

      I’ve thought this too and I truly do believe they try to be too pretty at home, and on the road they just try to score goals and keep it simple.

      Home Record 23-13-5
      Road Record 23-15-3

      I think we get a huge advantage playing in front of that crowd, but it provokes our players to try and put more of a show on than is necessary – just score goals, pretty, ugly, deflections, etc. and win!

  29. habsfan0 says:

    I really liked CBC’s opening montage with Montreal singer Michel Pagliaro.
    They don’t make music like that anymore.

  30. C-Sword says:

    Max Pac has to shoot more often, his passes are terrible, a lot of them led to turnovers, the Bolts had a scoring chance every time he was on the ice, enough with trying to make the fancy play in the playoffs like the Sedins.

    I was one of the few who never talked bad about Bourque, I already knew that he was a playoff performer. I did criticize Eller from time to time, but if you know me, then you’d know that he had been my favorite Hab since being traded here, watching him having a miserable season really pissed me off.

  31. jimmy shaker says:

    Moen will be available come game 5, if necessary. Who would come out for him? The only guy that could come out is Danny B. But would or should MT do it? I say no……He needs to have danny b out there and out there on a regular shift getting 10-11 minutes a game. But if MT does go with Moen, I fear danny b will get the shaft yet again!

    Shaker out!

    • Strummer says:

      The only 2 problems I see at present are the power play and the Vanek line is having trouble finishing their chances.
      Moen doesn’t solve either.

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

    • shiram says:

      Prust has not looked all that great, but I would not want Moen on Pleky’s line either.

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        Shiram, didn’t you like Prust last night? I thought he did a lot of good things.

        • shiram says:

          I mostly missed last night’s game, I was having Easter supper with my family.
          What I saw was that his shot was weak and he was not as engaged as he usually is.

          • Dunboyne Mike says:

            Hard choice! But the right one I think!
            (It was so late here, I was doing the Easter dishes during the intermission while everyone else was asleep).
            Over the course of the whole game Prust looked pretty engaged. Lots of high-energy forechecking, lots of checks, creating turnovers, and working well with the puck down low and looking to make passes.

            You could be right about the weak shot. I am still fearful that he was rushed back earlier than is good for him.

          • shiram says:

            Well I meant over the 3 games, if you’re saying he’s rounded into form for the third game, that’s great!

          • Dunboyne Mike says:

            Well fwiw I believe rounding into form is perhaps a really good way of putting it. He did not look good in Game 1, was better in 2, and was, I thought, really contributing last night.

            There are others much more knowledgable than I am who might confirm or refute this assessment.

            Meanwhile, if Prust is not still physically delicate (shoulders and/or ribs), it could be of immense importance to us if we are to meet Boston.

    • Caesar is along for the ride for 25 says:

      If DB is not playing PP minutes then having him dressed at all seems like a waste of time. He is not playing as bad as I thought he would. I say this as a guy who can’t stand DB as a player never have never will. But the Habs are paying him so why not give him a chance to make a difference. Any way 1 more game hopefully and they can practice the PP and come up with a better one

    • Habfan10912 says:

      It better not be Bournival. I think it’ll be Weiss and or Danny Briere, depending on the matchup. Good problem to have though, eh? An organization with some depth. Nice.

  32. Hobie says:

    So if Galchenyuk were to become healthy, who, if anybody, sits from the current group of forwards?

    • naweed235 says:

      Galchenyuk sits!

    • Caesar is along for the ride for 25 says:

      I asked the same question yesterday and Habspooch (I think) answered correctly the only player that would lose their spot now is Bournival unless to injury. I would not change him for Moen or Chucky at this point. We will see what Rnd2 – if we make it- brings.

    • LizardKing12 says:

      Galchenyuk is expected to be healthy for the second round so IMO it will depend heavily on who the Habs are facing in round 2. If the Habs are facing the Bruins they will want more size and grit on the fourth line. If that’s the case then I think Galchenyuk replaces Prust on the Pleks line and Prust replaces either Bournival or Briere on the 4th line.

      If instead we face the Wings in round 2 then I think we will want as much speed and skill in the lineup as possible. In this case I still see AG replacing Prust on the Pleks line, however, I think Prust then takes Weise’s spot on the 4th line keeping both Briere and Bournival in.

      I’m sure that at some point Galchenyuk will be inserted into the Habs lineup but it might not be right at the beginning of round 2. The current Habs lineup is playing very well and it affords MT the luxury of being patient and waiting for AG to be as close to 100% as possible. Furthermore, I doubt MT makes even the most minute change to his lineup until the Habs lose a game.

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      Weiss, Prust drops to the 4th where he belongs.

      ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  33. Strummer says:

    Someone suggested earlier to split up Markov and Subban on the PP.
    1. Why not leave them for the entire 2 minutes?
    2. Have Markov-Emelin on the first wave and Subban with a forward on the 2nd wave.
    3. Who would that forward be?

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

    • Da Hema says:

      I think the risk of putting a forward on the point at this stage is far too great. The problem with Montreal’s power play at this time is not their defencemen: it is the forwards who are playing around the perimeter. It may look pretty, but the Habs aren’t going to score many power play goals in the playoffs passing the puck around all the time.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      hi strum

      Some may argue that having a forward on the point in the 2nd wave when a penalty is about to expire – especially if they can’t get off the ice or an icing occurs, could put the team in a bad situation.

      As for leaving Subban/Markov for the total 2 minutes, that could also lead to a huge long shift.
      I believe this year, Subban did that and had a shift of 3:20.
      He has the strength to handle that, yet if Markov was caught out there for that long, that may hurt the rest of his game.

  34. CJ says:

    Thus far we have enjoyed lots of balance, with all but three skaters having points through three games. One is plus 3, one is even and one is minus 1. Without looking, can you name them?

  35. Maritime Ronn says:

    Only 43% want to play the Bruins?
    Come on HIO.

    Don’t you want to beat the team with the best NHL record this year?
    The team that went to the Cup Finals last year?
    Payback, and another shot for 2011?
    I say, Bring It On!

    What’s the fear?
    Price > Rask.
    Habs 6 man D Unit > Bruins 6 man unit

    Fear of LooCheech?
    Did Emelin show fear when he nailed him in Boston and made him a non factor after that?
    Thornton? He can fight with himself…

    Nephilim Chara?
    Say what you wish about the Leafs, yet they almost produced the blueprint last year on how to neutralize him.
    Every chance they had, they dumped the puck in his corner forcing him to skate and pivot, and then finished their checks when they could.
    He wasn’t given a free pass.
    The Habs this year have plenty of character and courage to do the same.

    In this neck of the woods, we have to deal with a lot of Crosby and MacKinnon fans and that’s almost OK – especially for MacKinnon….yet there was also a ‘genetic mishap’ produced in some barn (A Combo of Rat-Prokaryotes-Human) called…Brad Marchand.
    Subban or Emelin can send him into the 5th row – that is unless he pulls up and chickens out, and that would be Mission Accomplished.

    To be honest, I am tired of seeing those 3X-4X-5X sized Boston sweaters rolly-polling around this neck of the woods.

    Sorry, but I want the Bruins.

    • Vito says:

      100% Agreed on everything!! I want the Bruins as well!!!

      Canada IS hockey!
      -Mike Weir

    • CJ says:

      I also want the Bruins. If you want to be the best, you need to beat the best. Sure, I wish it could be deferred to the conference finals, but let’s get it on.

    • Haberoooo13 says:

      Ditto…and yes the best play is to play towards Chara and his corner…playing away only lets him use that 20 foot reach

      Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

    • Habilis says:

      Agreed. I’m in that 43%. Bring em on.

    • shiram says:

      I just think the Wings/Habs would make for better hockey games.

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        agree shiram

        It would be Olympic style hockey, with so much less of the BS.

        Yet allow me to ask you.
        Does this team have a ‘different and special feel’ about it?

        • shiram says:

          This year Habs team?
          I don’t know, they did not seem like it in the regular season, but they certainly feel special in their first 3 playoffs game.

    • FlyAngler says:

      I want the Bruins……. heads on a platter etched with the Habs logo on it, in time pour la fete de St. Jean Baptiste.

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

    • 24 Cups says:

      I’d rather face Detroit seeing it would be an easier step to eventually being in the Conference final. Playing against Howard instead of Rask would be a huge plus factor. Plus there wouldn’t be any gooning and hacking. Not to mention the less likelihood of having Hab players get injured by Bruin thugs.

      24.2 Cups

    • Strummer says:

      I would prefer to play Boston in a later round. That’s when Chara starts to show his decline as he has the last 2 playoffs.
      maybe this year he craps out in the second round.

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

    • dsturge10 says:

      Well said Ronn. I live in HRM too, and I agree. What a shot in the arm it will be for the Habs moving on after they defeat Brad and the Bruins in 6!

      “We don’t feel the pressure. We apply the pressure.” – Michel Therrien

    • Da Hema says:

      I selected Boston, but I think a Montreal-Detroit series would be more entertaining hockey from a skills perspective.

      I can assure everyone here that Montreal’s players are most decidedly not intimidated by Boston. Indeed, it appears to me Subban and Emelin have some kind of competition going to see which one of them can take out Lucic. Lucic doesn’t play particularly well against the Habs precisely because he has to watch out for the hits that come his way. Put out Tinordi and Murray, and the Habs are well matched in terms of size and toughness with Boston.

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        You said, ” I can assure everyone here that Montreal’s players are most decidedly not intimidated by Boston.”

        …and you are ABSOLUTELY right.
        Please trust me on that one….although I may not have agreed with that statement in some past seasons or series.
        There s no fear in this group.

    • frontenac1 says:

      I voted Bruins. Damned right I did.

    • Fansincebirth says:

      I just hate playing a team that is out to intentionally injure people like Boston does. Whether they are up by a couple of goals or down by a couple they turn into Neandethals and want to run up a body count. Our guys are built for more a style of facing the Wings and TB and that is straight up playing hockey. Does this mean that we couldn’t face Boston and win? Of course not but I don’t like the idea of seeing our guys being carried off the ice on stretchers and the league doing Jack Shit about it because they love rock ’em sock ’em hockey in Bettman’s World.

    • LizardKing12 says:

      What I want more than anything is for the Habs to win the cup and IMO the best way to do that is through the path of least resistance. I admire the sentiment of ‘you have to beat the best to be the best’ but if we are going to be honest the Habs do not have the best team in the playoffs so why tempt fate! I think they have a lot of amazing pieces on this team and sooner rather than later the Habs have a great chance of being amongst the NHL’s elite teams. For now though we are looking at what has been an unbearably long cup drought that could potentially be ended if the team keeps up this level of play and catches some breaks so why would we want to make our lives more difficult.

      Right now this is a team that has a good mix of youth and veteran leadership, skill and character guys coming together in front of IMO the league’s best goalie. It very much mirrors the ’93 team who had a similar makeup and placed similarly in the regular season. What aided that team on top of coming together at the right time was that the stars aligned somewhat and they didn’t have to face the best teams on their way to a cup win. They were the lower seeded team in round one and had to beat a very good Nordiques team but after that they caught some breaks. They played the Sabres in round two who had the least points of any eastern playoff team, the Islanders in the conference finals and they had the second least points of any eastern playoff team and finally they faced the LA Kings in the final and they had the 6th most points of any western playoff team.

      That wasn’t exactly the hardest path to the cup but it wasn’t any less rewarding. Not only is Detroit a less well rounded team than the Bruins but they are much less physical. In the long run it would be beneficial for the Habs to avoid the grueling physical play of the Bruins which could potentially leave them much more battered and bruised if they win than beating the Wings would. I’m going to a little further ahead than I should here but I hope we meet the Rangers in round 3. The Habs would have home ice advantage and we own the Rangers, and more specifically King Henrik, in the bell center. Anyways that is just my opinion, the easier the path the more likely the Habs are to win the cup. When and if we ever get back to consistently winning the division and finishing in the top 2 in the east every year then we can get all rah rah about wanting to kick the crap out of all the best teams. Until then let’s make it easy on ourselves!

      • Adidess says:

        I agree with the reasoning, Lizard. Winning the Cup is paramount, and I agree that going through Boston makes the journey much more perillous. How many guys did we lose getting that last regular season win against the Bruins?

        In fact, playing Detroit would mean Boston has been eliminated, which would make for many more little joys, along the way of our run towards the Cup.

        Go Team CHanada!

  36. Hobie says:

    It ain’t over until the fat lady sings. Good picture Stu!

  37. kalevine says:

    a lot of whining in Tampa papers, understandable, but to say flat out they deserved to win that game is a bit far fetched. One could argue the Habs deserved to be up 3-0 after the first, in which case it would have been game over long before any goaltender interference call or non call

    • Mustang says:

      I am a Habs fan, 100%. However there were 2 calls last night that just did not seem right to me. Firstly the offside call on SS. Stop action shows that he was clearly on-side. Secondly that goaltender intereference call. There were lots of other calls that one side or the other did not like last night but to me, those 2 stood out. Could you imagine the outrage here if those 2 calls had been against the Habs? I want to the Habs to win the series fair and square and I simply did not like those 2 calls.

      • habs12 says:

        We had those calls against us last year during the playoffs…

      • athanor says:

        Sure there would have been outrage, but it would be just as wrong-headed as Tampa fans’ is now.
        The rule may or may not suck, but it is the current rule.
        Just imagine if they hadn’t called it and people had started up about how that was a classic goalie interference. That would have been justifiable anger.

  38. habs001 says:

    Borque has looked great and some posters have forgiven him for the entire season…But lets see what happens in the rest of the playofs..He is playing the same team every night so is Tampa a good matchup for him?..Lets see what he does vs other teams…Now the players on the team only care about winning right now but if Borque plays the same way next season during the regular season as he did this season i am not sure that is good for the team..Players may think i might as well take it easy in the regular season and get the playoff praise…

    • kalevine says:

      it could be a problem, but right now his play is a problem I am glad they have

    • Haberoooo13 says:

      True but he was arguably Habs best forward against Sens last year…

      Lafleur coming out rather gingerly…

    • Loop_Garoo says:

      If he does slow down, that’s ok, as by then hopefully Max will be on a role, but I would not be surprised if he keeps playing well, as the only difference between now and the last month of the season is that he stopped hitting the goal posts or shooting wide, and also, he was really good, one of the only good ones, against Ottawa last year.

    • Mustang says:

      It almost looks like he was coasting through the regular season waiting for the playoffs (the real season) to begin. He certainly has been showing what he can do lately, or what he hasn’t been doing for much of the time the past 6 months.

  39. Ian Cobb says:

    Do the boys want to soak up some more ray’s in Florida for a week or so!
    There will be about 10 days of not playing any hockey if we sweep!

    • naweed235 says:

      Ian, I was actually thinking to myself if being off for this long would be more detrimental than beneficial to their chances for the next round… The “Rust” and “Momentum” factors are very real in the playoffs…
      I personally wouldn’t mind if the series extended to maybe 5 or 6 games just because of that fact.

  40. Stevie.Ray says:

    Last night was a good example of how Vanek probably got labeled a floater, but it’s interesting to watch him.

    There were several shifts where it would look like he would lose his man, or not give a solid effort, and then he would float around… But while “floating” he would be in the perfect place to intercept a pass. At first I was so surprised TB would try to pass through a guy who was clearly in the way, but Vanek does it so often.

    He reminds me of a guy I used to play football with who wouldn’t run full speed, wouldn’t run his routes correctly, was slow off the ball, and would go on to set every record in the league. I guess there are some guys that are just so good naturally, that even when it looks like they’re not trying, they are doing the right thing.

    • piper says:

      Agree. I was just talking to a Sabre fan about that the other night. He is very frustrating to watch at times like when he gets knocked down and takes for ever to get up and get back. But then he makes a brilliant play and it’s all worth it. He is an elite player that reminds me of Mat Sundin sometimes.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Vanek has incredible vision and play anticipation.
      He is incredibly smart out there.

      Big guys (6′-217) that are not natural skaters sometimes get the ‘floater’ label attached to them by those that don’t see his complete game – or only see the forced TV version of him and not what he does without the puck.

      It’s been so long the Habs haven’t had a big, superbly intelligent, goal scoring forward that is not afraid to go where he has to be to score…perhaps we all forget.

    • Strummer says:

      I don’t think he looks like he’s floating but that line is frustrating to watch when they can’t cash in the numerous chances they get.

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

  41. Butterface says:

    Why is there a picture of a fat lady singing ?

    Is Stu Cowan trying to be ironical ?

    If he really wanted us to catch that imagery shouldn’t he post a picture of Sami Salo on stage at a Karaoke Bar ?

    If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it…..

  42. habs001 says:

    If Boston/Detroit go 7 games the earliest the Habs play is May 2nd or May 3rd…If they beat Tampa…lol

  43. Danno says:

    All 21,273 fans doing the Bergevin Shake – sounds like a good idea for Game Four tomorrow night.


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

  44. habs001 says:

    The Habs will have to develop another player that can play the pp point for next year…While Markov still can play the point he looks much slower and less agile on the pp than even at the beginning of the season….Putting Gorges and Emelin on for the last 50 to 40 seconds is basically saying lets not give up a short handed goal but no way we are scoring…

  45. Chrisadiens says:

    Well if I’m not mistaken our fellow poster Matty will be attending the game tomorrow. His record when attending the Bell Centre? Not good. I think we can all plan on a game 5.

    Matty, are you sure there isn’t anything I can do to persuade you to be absent for the game tomorrow?


    Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

  46. BigB says:

    Hoping our beloved Habs can keep rolling!!!

    In my opinion, this is an overachieving team. Majority expected us to barely make it to the playoffs, but we finished with 100 points AND did pretty well. Kudos to all players and all of the management team. Is this the year of #25??? 🙂

    Habs forever!

  47. 123456 says:

    so I believe for those of us that want to understand the rule – the non-goal was the right call. and I liked the fact the ref let it go until a goal resulted – as in if the shot went wide and the habs cleared the zone no need for another whistle….. not that I agree with how the nhl wants games to flow but I believe the ref did exactly what the nhl wants and what the nhl intends…

    let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves with the 3-0 lead. the games have been close…. with each team carrying the play for major stretches…. I do feel the habs have carried the play more often though.

    weaver makes me more than nervous

    I was watching the game on NBCsportsnetwork. did anyone notice a scrum in front of price and he was indifferent to it as his head stood many inches above all the rest – just a great shot

    • FlyAngler says:


      “For those of us that want to understand the rule…” – That is an excellent qualifier, because obviously some people do not. Fraser gives an excellent explanation of the rule and why Referee Charron’s call was the correct one in his C’mon Ref column on TSN.ca

      The video vindicates the wisdom of the rule IMO, because at no time after making contact with Kilhorn in the crease is Carey Price “set” or in proper position to attempt to stop a shot prior to the puck entering the net.

      The rule and its application in this case make total sense even if Carey Price is taking advantage of a loophole in the rule by initiating the contact with the attacking player himself which still nullifies a goal according to the rule. Bottom line- the attacking player ain’t supposed to be there.

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

  48. ClutchNGrab says:

    Started my browsing day with an article titled “What We Learned: Boston Bruins hypocrisy already dialed up to 11”.

    Well, it delivered:

    He has now been suspended twice in his career, and fined twice. He also intentionally ran into Ryan Miller at 6,000 miles per hour and received no supplementary discipline for reasons that continue to baffle to this day. Which makes his protestations that he doesn’t “make a habit” of dirty play, and spearing in particular, and “believe[s] in playing within the rules” a remarkably hot load of garbage.
    Milan Lucic is a player who has no respect for his opponents. Period.
    He also happens to be a very good power forward who scores a lot of goals for one of the best teams in the league, and a big guy who can play some very physical hockey. But if he was smaller, or European maybe, or didn’t put up the numbers, the amount of times you’d hear “rat” in association with his name around this league would be off the charts. He is a rat, the worst kind of actor in the league because he repeatedly plays to hurt, in the cheapest ways possible, and then pulls an aww shucks attitude whenever he’s called to account for it.

    Love it!


    • GoldenSeal says:

      He also never fights anyone who is not 2″ shorter than him and 30 lbs lighter. He is as bad as Phaneuf when it comes to fighting a real opponent.

  49. Habfan10912 says:

    @CJ. For some reason (Senior moment) I thought you were attending last nights game. I spent several moments jealous of you. Now you tell me I wasted all that jealousy last night and must do so zgin tomorrow? Blah!

    Lots of love to PK and Bourque and rightfully so but Markov and Emelin have played their best hockey if the season. I believe Markov blocked a thousand shots last night.

    CHeers bud.

    • CJ says:

      Hi Jim. No, my buddy used the seats last night. I’ve got game four and six (if necessary).

      Agreed that Markov and Emelin have also been very, very good. Game one was a tough night for our defence, but the players and coaches have adjusted and we have been much better since.

  50. mdp2011 says:

    Talk about having no class what so ever, apparently Duncan Keith said to Backes after he was knocked out cold by Seabrook “wakey-wakey”.

    Dan Rosen ‏@drosennhl 3m
    Keith is being accused of saying “wakey wakey, Backes” after Seabrook hit him. Keith was asked about it twice today, never denied saying it.

  51. UKRAINIANhab says:

    One player I do not want to see in playoffs is Tinordi. Sorry folks, he made gaffs in pretty meaningless games that led to goals that were 100% on him. Imagine the pressure he would be under in playoffs. Say what you want about Franky, but Cube has played just fine. Next year is the year for Tinordi, not this year. If we want Toughness, Murrays the guy

    • Adidess says:

      I would tend to agree. The playoffs aren’t the time to bring in unproven rookies, unless they are injury replacements. MT didn`t trust Tinordi during the regular season, forget about Tiny playing a role in the playoffs, unless some guys go down, which nobody wants to see.

      For Murray, I would want him in next series, especially if we face the Bruins. Boston plays Chara mostly in the slot on the PP, and without Murray, Chara would be unmovable in front of Carey. That could cause major trouble.

      The problem with Murray 5-on-5 is that he’s too slow to change on the fly, which would put us at a disadvantage on the road in terms of match-ups. Though he is not a perfect solution, we’ll need him if we’re playing Boston.

      Go Team CHanada!

      • CJ says:

        Just to be fair, Tinordi has more playoff experience than Emelin and just less than Weaver. Again, not pushing Tinordi at this point, just adding some facts to the conversation. I think there is a chance we see Murray against the Bruins and Tinordi will replace injuries.

        • Adidess says:

          If I were coaching, Tinordi would have been in my D rotation long ago, and by now he would be comfortable playing his role.

          I was speaking from the perspective of a coach who favors ‘veteranship’ over anything else. MT would not give Tiny the chance and the room to prove himself during the regular season, I don’t see how he would do so now when the stakes are so much higher. We agree on the rest, I think.

          Go Team CHanada!

    • CJ says:

      I agree that Frankie has been very solid. More so than Weaver. I guess it goes to show that there’s no correlation between regular season and playoffs. Your boy Weaver has improved in the second and third game, but had a bad night in game one. You could quickly see that he had 11 playoff games of experience in his career.

      You are right about Tinordi. By my count he was responsible for three goals against since the Phoenix game (Phoenix, Boston and Columbus). I think we all see what we want to see. To be fair, I’ve seen your man Weaver make mistakes and Frankie and PK collectively made four in the Detroit game alone.

      It’s all good. None of that matters now. As Ronn said, you can’t hide in the playoffs. Everything is magnified. It’s all good right now, but I expect we will soon face adversity and, through this adversity our character will be forged. I’d expect, before our playoff run is over, that we see Chucky, Moen, Murray and Tinordi.

      • UKRAINIANhab says:

        Where do you see Galchenyuk fitting?

        • CJ says:

          Top six. As much as I hope otherwise, there is likely to be injuries. He is our top six depth.

          Moen is our third line depth. White is fourth line depth. Beaulieu could replace Markov or PK, while Tinordi, Murray and Pateryn are insulation against one of Emelin, Gorges, Frankie or Weaver.

          It’s great to have this depth. As Bergevin said, it’s like having insurance on your home. You hope you never need it, but it’s great to have just in case.

  52. habs_54321 says:

    Remember last year when Diaz was on our Go too shutdown pair LOl

  53. mdp2011 says:

    Darren Dreger ‏@DarrenDreger 2m
    Holding a water bottle as a mic, Jon Cooper joins Stamkos media scrum to lighten things up. Humorous…yet, strange.

  54. shiram says:

    Ryan RishaugVerified account ‏@TSNRyanRishaug

    Stamkos says he’ll play game four.

  55. Danno says:

    That was a phantom penalty on Briere. He should not have been reprimanded for it.


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

  56. Butterface says:

    I didn’t quite grasp what Palat was thinking when he was chasing PK around the back of the net.

    Did he try to pole vault over PK to get in front of him ?

    Whatever he tried, he did not stick the landing.

    The landing sticked him.

    He skated to the bench with much shame.

    If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it…..

    • shiram says:

      He caught his stick in the goal’s netting.

      • Butterface says:

        Yeah, that’s what I am saying. For the sole purpose of using the leverage and force built up in the bending of the stick to catapult himself over PK and land on the other side and take the puck away.

        I just think it wasn’t reasoned through. He used “Wiley Coyote” mathematics.

        What you are saying makes no sense. There is no way a professional NHL athlete could ever accidentally get his stick caught in the netting and not think to let go of said stick before it ceased all his forward momentum and threw him upside down into the boards. I mean, c’mon.

        He had to be trying the pole vaulting manoeuvre. I think his stick even had an ACME logo on the side.

        If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it…..

  57. mrhabby says:

    Not going to get carried away with the way the Habs are playing to much. That being said its a nice team game with everybody contributing. Bork…wow. keep on drinking those protein shakes.
    Have to say that if Bishop was playing it could be a very different series.
    The next series could be alot different but I really like the momentum the Canadiens will be carrying into it.

    Good job coaching staff.

    • CH Marshall says:

      Absolutely. In a parallel universe, who knows what the series would be like if Bishop was in net, and Stevie Y didn’t trade St. Louis away. But yeah, Bourque! Maybe he found out he’s MaxPac’s long lost brother

  58. Maritime Ronn says:

    @ CJ

    Some reasons why you don’t want to change things up on the back end at this moment – win streak, the nature of the competition, and finally finding a trusted 3rd pair.

    During the season, the Habs had a hodge-podge 3rd pairing with 5 different guys rotating in and out.
    The result was a lack of trust – some caused by mobility issues or simple inexperience.

    This lack of trust forced Coach MT to give the 3rd pairing almost exclusive O zone starts, forcing the Top 4 to have many more D zone starts which cramped any of their offensive talents.

    The advance stat of ‘quality of competition’ now shows the trusted pairing of Bouillon/Weaver making many more Dzone starts.

    This allows the Subban/Markov duos more neutral zone/OZone starts and a better chance in getting the offense going…which may be part of the reason for the hugely improved 5X5 play in this series vs. the regular season.

    Could that also be one of the reasons for the noticeable improvement of Subban, who now has 4 points in 3 games and is +3?

    Lastly, Weaver’s tough minutes 1st Unit PK time has allowed Markov to move down to the less intense 2nd Unit PK.
    Giving Markov less tough minutes could prove beneficial as the playoff games start to pile up.

    • ProHabs says:

      Yes, no changes to the line up please. Leave it as is until the 2nd round. Then if we play the Bruins we might need to find a way to get Murray, Tinordi, Moen and Galchenchuk in at some point.

    • Butterface says:


      If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it…..

    • CJ says:

      Thank you Ronn for extending the courtesy of a reply. I agree with your comments. I do think, as we progress, we are certain to face adversity and will inevitably lose. I do agree that this lineup seems to be best suited for Tampa Bay, but I’m not certain that this is our best mix of assets against the Bruins.

      I’m not trying to nitpick, I’m just looking ahead. One of the things that still concern me is lack of PP scoring. Up 1-0 and awarded a four minute PP in the first period, we should have been able to generate more than we did. We are able to overcome this issue against the Bolts, but this won’t be good enough against the Bruins. Good enough will see us out in 5/6 games. We will need to be great.

      Again, just thinking outside the box. Lastly, IMO, PK Subban in the past three games has been excellent. So much as Bourque and Eller have gotten praise, rightfully so, for elevating their play, PK is 180 degrees from where he was the last 40 games of the season. Not to get too far off track…… Again, if not now, maybe we see Murray or Tinordi against the Bruins?

      • HabsPooch says:

        I think we’ll see Murray in and Bouillon out for the Bruins and status quo if it’s the Red Wings. Personally, I would have put in Tinordi over Bouillon from the get-go. I mean he’s bigger, faster, stronger…and he wouldn’t be logging so many minutes that would hurt the team. Tinordi would reap the benfits gaining the experience and growing that much more – pardon the pun.
        Like Krug and Hamilton, our really young guys need the exposure.

      • Maritime Ronn says:


        No doubt competition and a few losses will dictate change.
        As mentioned, there is no place to hide in the playoffs.
        Playing the same team over and over starts to highlight the weakest links.
        If those weak links become size on the backend, Coach MT will adjust

        As for the PP, it is important yet may be a bit overrated as to its ultimate importance in the playoffs.
        5X5 play still wins the day along with goaltending and a good PK.

        As for Subban, it’s amazing that when he keeps it simple – when he picks the right time and place to gamble, how effective he becomes.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Hiya Ronn. Excellent post as usual. Certainly Vanak was the star trade deadline pick up but I think Weaver has had a very calming effect on a then very pouress defense. To me he’s an unsung hero.

  59. Danno says:

    That high flip pass from PK to Bourque where he scored after 11 seconds into the game… Why was it not called a three-line pass?


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

  60. Old Bald Bird says:

    Ex ref, Paul Stewart on the goal. He would have allowed it but understands the decision.


    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Few refs had a better feel for the game than Paul Stewart

      • jimmy shaker says:

        I don’t understand why he and fraser don’t say that the rule needs to changed and when the tender is interfered with, the play automatically gets blown dead, ala international rules. That would put to rest all this grey area and how far this rule is allowed to play out (seconds after bump occurred between tender and player). Because there were a couple seconds that went by before the puck went in the net after the initial contact, but Carey was never able to get set again. Don’t like Fraser saying Carey forced the contact and knew what he was doing as he’s done the same thing a couple times this past year.

        Shaker out!

  61. CJ says:

    Good morning folks.

    Couple of quick hits……

    Not that I haven’t liked the overall composition of our roster, but being in the enviable position of 3-0, would you insert Tinordi and/or Pateryn/Beaulieu to give them some exposure on the back end? Maybe Murray? Although the team has not faced injuries or adversity otherwise, I think it could help keep it fresh. I still think we see Moen at some point, although I wouldn’t want to even guess who gets pulled in his place.

    Everything is clicking right now. Sometimes, as weird as this sounds, when things are going so well I’m inclined to look for the catch. The team faced adversity in game one, otherwise, aside from a Tampa push during the second period last night, I’ve thought we have been in control.

    I can’t wait to get to the Bell Centre tomorrow night. I was chatting with a friend this morning who indicated that it was electric last night. Truly the greatest place to watch an NHL playoff game. If anyone is going to be at the game, or would like to grab a beer before hand, my wife and I will be in town by 4:00pm.

    Lastly, and this is really rich, according to reports in Ottawa this morning, Spezza has demanded a trade…..

    Have a great day everyone! Cheers, CJ

    • Fansincebirth says:

      I would take Cube out and insert Tiny on Tuesday

    • Cal says:

      No changes. Sends the wrong message to everyone busting their butts on the ice. The others will get their chance soon enough.

    • frontenac1 says:

      I would activate Murray for the Bruins. He played well against them this year. He has the playoff experience.

    • mrhabby says:

      MSG and United Centre are great. Also the rink where Minny plays is damn good.

      • CJ says:

        I’ve never been to a playoff game, but I’ve been to regular season games at all three. Minnesota was the best. Longest escalator I’ve ever been on in my life. MSG had the most escalots lol. I think I took 20 to get to our seats, and we were half way up.

    • JUST ME says:

      For all the usual reasons/clichés i would not change a thing to the roster. Now is not the time mostly for off ice reasons. There is a chemistry between those guys that has not failed and one must do everything to preserve it.

      I do not see why the Habs should pay the price of uncertainty just for the sake of giving experience to rookies that did not even make a regular spot for themselves in the regular season when they had a chance to . This is the time to be serious,no experiments ,cover all the angles.
      As for Murray i think he will be in in the second round that is bound to ask for a bit more physicality than this serie does.

  62. Maritime Ronn says:

    Timo says:
    …..Did Danny have to atone for the stupid penalty he took that resulted in the TB’s goal? Did he get benched in order to get personally better?
    Almost yes.
    Briere was given a penalty at the 7:22 mark of the 2nd period.
    After that, he played a total of 3 more shifts the rest of the game – or the last 30 minutes of the game.
    The 3 shifts lasted for 49-28-56 seconds, and Briere did not see the ice for the last 10 minutes of the game.

    So yes, he is personally better today

    • jimmy shaker says:

      Again, that’s why I love this coach! Make a mistake Danny or get a chincy call go against you and your coach mails you in the rest of the night! Thankfully this guy is a good pro and never complains publicly about how short MT’s leash if for himself. At least he’s getting some PP time. I wish he would give this guy more slack and give that 4th line 10 minutes a night. They need to be involved and get into the rhythm of the game, and playing sparingly really prohibits that in my opinion.

      Shaker out!

  63. Commandant says:

    Canadiens keep finding ways to get it done.

    #20 on the list is Nikolay Goldobin, a former linemate of Alex Galchenyuk for a time in Sarnia (before Galchenyuk was put with Boucher/Sarault)

    Go Habs Go!


  64. Adidess says:

    Hi, a few observations from last night’s game… I know most people watched it on TV and got to see many more replays than I did, so will focus on stuff that add something from a live spectator perspective. I don’t go to too many games, something that probably shows in my takeaway notes.

    1. The intro show. The production quality of that intro was off the charts. It’s an even better experience to take in LIVE; it gets everyone in the crowd revved up and ready to go. The screaming got louder with Ginette Reno’s appearance last night, and by the time Bourque scored his early goal, sprung by PK’s long pass, the young Lightning squad had barely found their bearings to begin the game. The domination continued throughout the 1st period with big push from the crowd.

    2. The disallowed goal. Most people in the stands thought we got away with one on the Callahan goal that was called off. There was contact with Price in the crease but the play was allowed to develop, and this being the playoffs (Zibanejad, anyone?), there was relief in the building that it didn’t count, but also a sense that it would not have been the most unjust decision ever made against us to let it stand. On the flip side, the Lightning were thoroughly dominated in the 1st, and it’s almost as if the refs decided they would not add to their misery by calling more penalties then. Maybe they felt they owed us one as well after the weak Brière penalty.

    3. Bourque. There was a buzz every time Bourque touched the puck in the offensive zone. Our ‘neighbours’ from all sides were talking about him, nobody can believe this is the same guy we have had for two years. Big, fast, skill-full and determined. It’s like having two Max Paciorettys.

    4. The big line. The first line was a bit off in terms of connecting with each other. Patches missed a good couple of chances, but what a skater this guy is, big strides and major speed. Vanek didn’t stand out (like him a lot, have him in my playoff hockey pool). DD- I have so much respect for the little man. His calling card is his incredible vision and puck-skills, but seeing him battle on the forecheck and win so many of his duels against bigger guys, was a treat. DD is good, people.

    5. The Gallagher goal. I don’t think I have ever been to a place with louder crowd noise than at the moment that goal was scored. Keep in mind this was after the disallowed goal and everyone was getting worried, for the first team really to that point in the game, and wanted to see something happen on our side. When Subban started stickhandling with that puck, the whole Bell Center stood up in anticipation, murmuring loudly (if that’s possible). By the time he came from behind the net, stopped on a dime to pass to Gallagher, hands were already in the air celebrating something. And then Gallagher placed a perfect shot, top-shelf, to lit the lamp. I believe my buddy and I hugged each other as if we had not seen each other in ten years.

    6. Team/Player jerseys. I expected the number of Price and Subban jerseys I saw in the crowd both on the streets and inside the Bell Centre. I couldn’t believe the number of Gallagher and Galchenyuk jerseys. For Gallagher, you know it’s about the grit, the drive, the big goals with a bleeding nose, and the nice grin that makes it all such a wonderful package. For Galchenyuk, it’s about the skills, the promise and the hope. I couldn’t help thinking this might be adding quite a bit of pressure for Galchenyuk, as his game has not really taken off yet with the Habs, to go along with that huge following among the faithful.

    Go Team CHanada!

  65. HabsFanInTampa says:

    I’m at a croosroads. Do I cheer for the Habs to sweep, or do I hope for a game 5 so I can use my front row seat tickets (Section 122) for game 5?

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

    With all due respect to Ginette Reno… dear Tampa Bay: the fat lady has sung.

    X X X 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

  67. C-Sword says:

    I was shocked that Quick played through the whole game. What message was Sutter trying to send to his players by not yanking him after it was 5-2? What a disrespectful way to treat the goalie that gave you a cup 2 years ago. A goalie switch for game number 3 might be good, I’m not putting all the blame on goaltending, the team is giving away too many odd man rushes, but it might wake the players up.

    • Cal says:

      Why do fans think keeping the goalie in after 5 goals allowed is “disrespecting” them? His message is to the team in this case. He’s saying, “Our goalie is playing his ass off. What are you guys doing?”
      The message is for the whole team to up their level of play.

      • ProHabs says:

        It the Patrick Roy syndrome. Goalies can be a sensitive bunch. You never know when they are going to lose it.

      • Garbo says:

        Did you only become a Habs fan in the past 10 years? You should google “Patrick Roy”.

        • Cal says:

          If a goalie is playing really well (which Quick was, by the way), do you bench him right away because his feewings might be hurt? Don’t think so.
          Roy left because he and Tremblay decided to act like 5 year olds. The fix to all that would have been a five minute conversation.

  68. Timo says:

    “PK atones for earlier penalty” – what a BS headline.
    Did Danny have to atone for the stupid penalty he took that resulted in the TB’s goal? Did he get benched in order to get personally better? So sick of Subban having to atone for every penalty or mistake he makes.

    • UKRAINIANhab says:

      Dumb headline yes, but ugh Danny B got a penalty for absolutely nothing. It led to there 1st goal, the phantom call on him.

      • GoldenSeal says:

        The Habs may be winning but the coach is still an idiot. He benched DB after he got called for a penalty that did not exist. People wondering why Habs players have such a hard time getting out of slumps only need look at this situation. DB has been playing his ass off in the playoffs and he gets rewarded with a benching. Don’t count your chickens yet folks, MT is still the coach.

      • WindsorHab-10 says:

        He did throw a cross-check right in front of the ref.

      • Adidess says:

        You are right, Ukrainian. Brière did absolutely nothing. In fact, I believe the referees started trying to over-correct after that weak call.

        Go Team CHanada!

    • CH Marshall says:

      Funny I was thinking that myself last night. If Subban had taken Briere’s penalty, he’d probably get an earful from the coach lol

    • Bob_Sacamano says:

      Finally I can completely agree with you on something. I can´t really complain about it though because that piece was written bei Hickey…

    • Cal says:

      That one’s on Stu. As editor he gets to pen the headline and not the reporter, but if the thrust of his article is focused on that penalty that PK took, he hasn’t much choice.

      The headline should have read: PK sets the tone for Streaking Habs. (then there would have been a pic of a naked PK leading the rest of the Habs on a run).


    • Garbo says:

      He was basically benched. At least get your facts straight before you spew your same repetitive complaints.

  69. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …sorry Frank ! 🙂 …great minds think alike ?

  70. Habitant in Surrey says:

    Kevin McGran; The Toronto Star: http://www.thestar.com/sports/hockey/2014/04/21/the_leafs_vs_habs_rivalry_is_over_and_montreal_has_won.html

    …It’s father and son sharing a moment about their favourite team when an interloper from Toronto approaches to ask about the Habs.

    “They’re the best team in the National Hockey League,” says Emanuel, his father smiling beside him. “Find me another team that won 24 Stanley Cups.”

    The interloper from Toronto thinks, “Yeah. I’ve heard that one.”

    The rivalry between the two cities — as lived and breathed by rabid fans of their two hockey teams — is quite possibly over, a fait accompli. What’s the English word? Oh yeah. Passé.
    Montreal won. It wasn’t even close.

    From bagels to bistros, smoked meat to poutine, cycling-friendly roads to restaurant-friendly sidewalks, Montreal has Toronto beat.

    Mayors? Theirs is only controversial once in a while.

    Alcohol — if you’re into that sort of thing — is available in corner stores.

    Joie de vivre? Well, it’s a French phrase, isn’t it?

    As for hockey — and we’re into that sort of thing — how is it that Montreal is always better at hockey than Toronto? This is a hockey nation. Toronto is the biggest city. There are more Torontonians in the NHL than Montrealers.

    The Habs are back in the playoffs once again. The Bleu-Blanc-Rouge are playing the NHL’s other team that wears blue and white — the Tampa Bay Lightning.

    And Montrealers are having a good time while Torontonians watch on TV. The streets are loaded with Habs jerseys. The stores hang signs to support the team. When the Bruins — Montreal’s playoff arch-villain — are playing, fans gleefully cheer for the Red Wings.

    “It’s the joie-de-vivre, the love to live, the joy,” says Frank Silva, manager of Schwartz’s, Montreal’s landmark smoked-meat shop. “It’s the bar scenes. People want to party all the time.

    “(We have) a winning team. It’s like you’re part of the team.”

    Lording it over us? They’re pretty good at that, too. It’s not just the playoff appearances and Stanley Cup titles that set Montreal apart.

    It’s outside the rink, where the Bell Centre is a recognizable landmark, not hidden underneath expressways and skyscrapers.
    It’s inside the rink, where the game operations people just have a sense of the moment, like adopting Youppi as the mascot when the Expos left town, or cameos by former stars rather than long, awkward car rides across the ice.

    “We put a lot of effort (into game-ops),” said Kevin Gilmore, the Canadiens’ chief operating officer. “We don’t take that for granted.
    “The challenge is, how do we get better? You can’t get be too over the top.”

    Regardless, every night, the fans sing. Okay, it’s one word — Ole — over and over again. But still.

    Compare that to Toronto, where every time Leaf fans dare to begin chanting “Go Leafs Go,” they are inevitably drowned out at the stoppage of play by some marketing moment disguised as a moronic trivia game, or the ear-blaring sounds of rock music (classic or alternative).

    That usually is followed by — and the irony here is delicious — the scoreboard telling the fans to “get loud.”

    It’s the torch, le flambeau, that is tangibly passed from generation to generation of Habs greats, theirs to hold high. It works both literally and figuratively.

    While Leaf front office types have grumbled for years that the Habs hijacked In Flanders Fields to get their hands on that torch, the Leafs have tried various copy-cat approaches. Most recently, they placed a boulder from the Canadian Shield outside their locker room to make the team feel “rock solid.” Get it?

    Take Vincent Damphousse, the first French-Canadian draft pick by the Maple Leafs. The Montreal native came to the Leafs in 1986, a witness to the end of the Harold Ballard era, a time when captains were ridiculed by ownership, past Leaf greats were told to buy tickets if they wanted to see a game and the team was severed from its glorious past.

    “The Ballard years were very tough,” says Damphousse. “The team was in a shambles when I played there. We had a committee of three general managers, a lot of different coaches. You could feel in the dressing room that you had no feel what direction the team wanted to go. There were no ex-players around the dressing room. There was no connection to the past. That’s very important. You’ve got to know where you come from.

    “In Montreal, I used to see Maurice Richard, Jean Beliveau, Guy Lafleur all the time. They would come in and say hi. The kids that come from Europe don’t have a clue what being a Montreal Canadien means, but they feel it when they get there.

    “Toronto has lacked that for a lot of years.”

    The Maple Leafs alumni have been welcomed back to the fold in the post-Ballard era. But their winning ways didn’t accompany them.

    They say your favourite team when you are 12 is your team for life. Today’s young adolescents in Toronto have only regular-season misery and late-season collapses to bond them, like the missed high-stick on Doug Gilmour in 1993 binds fans from a generation earlier.

    Montreal’s young-uns don’t have the Cup championships of their fathers, but to bind them they do have some regular playoff appearances, their hate of the Boston Bruins — and hey, they’ve toned down the whole post-game rioting thing.

    Maybe we’re maturing as a nation to the point where we don’t need to take pot shots at each other. (edit;”don’t hold Your breath Kevin; H.i.S. 🙂 )

    Maybe the other sports teams — Argos vs. Alouettes, TFC vs. Impact — have to up their game.

    And maybe the rivalry is not dead.

    Maybe it only feels that way because you’d have to be of a certain age — by that we mean closer to the end than the beginning — to remember the last time the Leafs and the Canadiens played a meaningful game against each other.

    The last time they met for the Cup was 1967; the last time they met in the playoffs was 1979.

    So maybe, just maybe, if the Leafs could get their act together and make the playoffs again, this rivalry could be renewed.

    Because, as 12-year-old Habs fan Emanuel Meduri put it: “I don’t like the Toronto Maple Leafs.”


  71. Habfan17 says:

    Watching Ginette Reno brought back memories of Kate Smith in Philly!

    I miss Roger Doucette!


  72. 44har48 says:

    I have not had time to get back on here the last few days but I had to make some time to just say how much better PK is playing in games 2-3 now that he is trusting his teammates and getting rid of the puck quicker. I have been very critical of his play and gimmicks this year, partly because of the contract issue and seemingly large gap between PK and the Habs. There are parts of his game I would rather never see again, but it is what it is, and he has clearly been one of our best players this series. Exciting playoff so far, one period at a time….

    And who was the lady everyone loved last night singing the anthem?

  73. Fansincebirth says:

    Not sure about a sweep but confident on a series win

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