Here’s your mask, what’s your hurry?

Red Fisher on the Hawks walking away from a Stanley Cup-winning goaltender

* James Mirtle: Hawks pay the price of success

• A story on the league’s web site lists Montreal as a possible destination for Antti Niemi.

• ESPN Chicago on the Turco signing

Seguin signs

Brian Gionta highlight reel (warning: crap music)

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• Another hard name to spell in at least six game stories: Buffalo signs Shaone Morrisonn

Sabres waive Tim Kennedy

Mike Modano to join the Wings

Updated FA list

• THN’s Ken Campbell on the great Nicklas Lidstrom

Obama will attend a Caps game

• HabsWatch has done an exhaustive study, Crisis in the Q

308 Comments

  1. joeybarrie says:

    Sometimes I just have to ask myself. Is a requirement of being a FAN of a team actually LIKING the team? Or is it simply waiting for any piece of bad news, mistake or controversy, blowing it out of proportion and rewriting the issue according to personal issues?

    I honestly wonder how many people REALLY like this Club. It’s obvious how many ACTUALLY support it. FEW is the answer. Monetary wise it has ALOT of support. But then again most people say what they think and don’t actually have the conviction to do anything about it…

    Sometimes I wonder if certain ‘FANS’ actually get ANY enjoyment out of the team or sport…

    There may be other teams, but only ONE Club De Hockey…

  2. ZepFan2 says:

    “Halak was a great goalie on an OK team.”

    I believe that line was used for Theodore as well.

    Clay, you’re sounding more delusional today. Hope you feel better.

    ————————————————————————

    After admiring the Stanley Cup: “This is the only thing that has seen more parties than us.”
    - Steven Tyler

  3. ed lopaz says:

    who do think HIRES the agent?

    do you think the players have any say in the matter of who represents them?

    do you give the players any credit at all for that decision?

    the players are grown men making a decision about who will represent them.

    some players choose not to have an agent at all.

    its the players choice afterall.

     

  4. adam76 says:

    Way to many “ifs”

  5. adam76 says:

    Almost as ridiculous as the consistent posting of fanboy “mashup” videos.

  6. madcap_habsfan says:

    koivu’s wife wasn’t fluently french, she made an effort (she did some show with dandenault’s wife where they redecorated lapierre’s house) but it wasn’t easy for her

  7. SeriousFan09 says:

    Niemi didn’t exactly have a Halakian workload with the CHI defence. He happened to make a few more saves than Leighton but that doesn’t mean he should get double what Leighton’s getting this season.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  8. madcap_habsfan says:

    that’s exactly what i was talking about in another post i did where i made the reference jerry mcguire the other day….

    …”and i don’t know why but all the stuff about price got me thinkng about agents and then thinking about agents got me thinking about jerry mcguire and the line..show me the money….and then i thought of tom cruise and i cried, but i digress do agents ALWAYS have their clients wellbeing in mind? could it be that price really does enjoy playing here and he’s willing to sign whatever but his agent is hardballing it? who knows…now please don’t persecute me for bringing it up im really just musing out loud here, doesn’t mean im right or wrong..just curious”

  9. Mattyleg says:

    It’s the agents who fill the players’ head with dreams of big money, not the owners.

    It’s the agents who push for bigger deals for bigger paydays themselves.

    It’s the agents who make the final decision on what the player is ‘worth’, even though they are not involved with the team as a whole, as the management is.

    It’s the agent who doesn’t even live in the same city as the player, and blows in every now and then claiming to know what’s best.

    Agents protect their own interests.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  10. SeriousFan09 says:

    You mean that 4-game sweep where they walked over the Sharks? It wasn’t some titantic battle that lasted to Game 7 and was nearly flipped several times but only because of miraculous saves a la Halak in Game 7 of WSH that was the series saved for the Blackhawks. Regardless of how well Niemi played then, he had an oustanding defence covering his mistakes and 3 lines of scoring depth to hammer the Sharks on the other end. Niemi has one year of playoff stats that are hardly impressive considering the blue line coverage he had.

    Turco has a career playoff Save % of .914 and GAA of 2.17 in post-season going by official NHL stats and the Dallas Stars have hardly enjoyed an elite defensive group like Niemi enjoyed in CHI also. Perhaps he like most goalies, needs a little help so he doesn’t have to be ‘the guy’ every game because he doesn’t have any defensive help.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  11. Thomas Le Fan says:

    No. Since you’re having trouble figuring it out, we either over pay for an unproven goaltender who did not win the cup, do not improve where we most needed to and along the way lose Price for nothing. We stay the same or we get something for one of our goalies. We could be in the same situation as Chicago. How would you like to be a Hawks’ fan this morning? Goaltender gone and nothing in return. Was it the best way to go for us? Only time will tell. But we had to toss the dice, one way or another, didn’t we? Posters either crying over losing Halak or over losing Price was inevitable. No? Let’s move on.      

  12. observer says:

    yes, 2 bewildering decisions! proving again that hockey gms are not the brightest bulbs in the room!

  13. observer says:

    Washington, Philly, San Jose, Detroit?

  14. Mattyleg says:

    Great idea!!! An agent cap!!

    What a joke of a ‘job’. Completely unskilled labor for huge reward.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  15. observer says:

    “If Leighton had won the Cup with the Flyers, would you say that journeyman deserved 3 million a year?” —- bad analogy. leighton only was successful when no shots were directed at him like almost one whole period by the habs. and when habs were so impotent to score zero goals in 3 games. leighton stunk out the place in the finals. niemi played well almost the entire playoffs.

  16. Mattyleg says:

    You are, of course, joking.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  17. ed lopaz says:

    agents are the ones protecting the player’s interests.

    many hockey players are not that bright when it comes to contracts and money.

    they play hockey.

    its the owners who write the checks, not the agents.

    if the owners choose not to pay, then as in the Niemi case, the agent loses.

    its the GM on behalf of the owners who make the final decision not the agents.

    its the owners who are risking their money, therefore they decide who gets paid.

  18. Mattyleg says:

    Yep, couldn’t agree more.

    Anybody who goes to arbitration has their own agenda in mind more than the team’s. Nobody is satisfied and it causes bad blood. Michael Ryder’s relationship with the Habs was never the same after he went to arbitration.

    Anybody who does that, then moans that he’s out on his… ear… can cry me a frickkin’ river.

    My hope is that agents and players will look at this little morality play and actually learn something out of it.

    I don’t hold much hope for the agents, though.

    Bloodsuckers.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  19. volcano62 says:

    Ummmmm AC/DC crap? Boone wishes he was as legendary as the boys from the land down under. That is the most ridiculous statement I have ever heard.

     

    Go Habs Go!

  20. Thomas Le Fan says:

    Well, not to worry. Soon the US will have the same crappy medical system as we have, so problem solved.  

  21. SeriousFan09 says:

    Doctors also make mistakes from time to time, I’m sure this wasn’t the first case of a sports injury being misdiagnosed.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  22. RGM says:

    I’m guessing it wouldn’t have been Mulder in that case.

    —————————————– Josh Gorges for Captain!

  23. ed lopaz says:

    as was pointed out below – and I believe correctly – Niemi was a KEY FACTOR in allowing the Hawks to get past the Sharks.

    if they don’t get through that series – a series where the Sharks played very well by the way – the Hawks

    do NOT advance, and the rest of the discussion regarding the Cup run never happens.

    same story with our goaltending.

    when we absolutely needed a hot performance – during the 5 elimination games – our goalie came through.

    goaltending is about making the KEY saves at the KEY moment – or winning the important game when your team absolutely needs to win.

    example:

    take the playoff stats of Turco and you’ll find that he has a save percentage well under 3.00 and GAA around

    .910 – and he’s played in many. many games, so these stats are quite statistically relevant.

    HOWEVER,

    Turco has a reputation of NOT MAKING the key save, and NOT WINNING THE KEY game.

    Therefore, many have criticized Turco.

    Niemi was HOT when the Hawks needed hot goaltending – against the Sharks.

    Therefore, Niemi was a KEY FACTOR in the Hawks Cup run.

  24. Mattyleg says:

    Now I understand… it’s ALWAYS the managment’s fault. Whether they give contracts that are too big or try to ‘low-ball’ players.

    I disagree that “A goalie who wins a Cup should get $3 mil”. Says who? Play a couple more years and earn that with consistency.

    Agents are on of the main reasons our game is in such a miserable state. It’s not 1940 anymore, the days of Richard-esque extortion are over (with thanks to the work of agents etc in the past) but let’s move on.

    Call the exterminator, get the parasites out.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  25. Bred says:

    Hell’s Bells is the reason why I bought my first Guitar….

    Boone, I and many others are disapointed.

  26. Ian Cobb says:

    Halak was a goalie on a 4th placed team!!

  27. smiler2729 says:

    I really hate crap music.

    I really could not care less that Antti Niemi is not returning to Chicago.

    I really am sick of Ilya Nous Vous Ils Kovy II. Overrated, overvalued.

    I really never liked Mike Modano.

    I really am in a bad mood today. Working in a Chrsyler plant (engine part foundry) in this humidity is gonna suuuck.

  28. Ian Cobb says:

    Team sport, play for each other is the name of the game. Spreading the cap more evenly throughout the line up is the way to go.

    Get rid of the fat cat agents. There should be a cap on them also.! My blog

  29. ed lopaz says:

    ever wonder what happened to Paul Mara?

    we all know he injured his shoulder and then eventually had surgery.

    what we didn’t know, and I found out yesterday, is that Mara went to Boston to have his surgery done.

    seems – according to my source who talked to Mara DIRECTLY – the Habs doctors misdiagnosed his original

    injury and thought he was suffering from a bruise.

    Mara went to Boston to get a second opinion and they found a tear in his shoulder.

    When Mara informed the Habs, they had him checked again in Montreal, confirmed the tear, and suggested he have surgery by the same doctor who originally blew the diagnosis.

    Mara refused, and went to Boston.

    Mara and the Habs never discussed re-newing his contract.

    Mara was really upset – his year was blown and his career was threatened.

    He described the Habs doctor who saw him as “young and very inexperienced” but I didn’t get the doctor’s name.

     

     

  30. SeriousFan09 says:

    Even if that goalie wasn’t one of the main reasons they won the Cup and managed to be slightly better than Let-It-In? If Leighton had won the Cup with the Flyers, would you say that journeyman deserved 3 million a year? Plenty of goalies could win the Cup but not deserve that amount of coin. Turco with Keith/Seabrook and Campbell/Hjalmarsson will be good enough to place in the Top 8.

    Hawks have their Top-4 defence intact and Hossa, Toews, Kane and Sharp, that’s some pretty good offence and their system has solid prospects. The West has seen the decline of Anaheim, Detroit and now Chicago from dominant hockey powers, it’s becoming a more wide-open Conference, especially since San Jose will likely choke when it counts again.

     

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu.
    http://habsandhockey.blogspot.com/

  31. G-Man says:

    If you’re going to be that sarcastic, use italics.

  32. 24 Cups says:

    M – I guess you would have to be in on the talks but it sure looks like Zito let his client down.  Cup winning team, solid D in front, Huet on the way out and a tight cap situation.  After only one year in the NHL, you might have thought that Niemi could have taken a thre year deal for average coin so that he could continue to develop and prove himself.  He then might be able to parlay that into a mega deal as a UFA when he’s 30.

    Outside of Kovy II, this year’s UFA market has been about defensemen, not goalies.  Zito played his cards the wrong way (especially seeing that the cupboard was bare) and now it appears that Niemi might just have to take the fall.  The true meaning of the NHL cap is now being felt.  Some young, high end core players hit paydirt while everybody else scrambles for what is left.

  33. RGM says:

    It’s one of those funny things that whenever “X goalie is available” discussions arise, Philly is automatically a candidate. Beyond them, almost everybody is set, it’ll come down to whether or not a team actually feels secure with what they have. If San Jose didn’t have Greiss, they’d probably be thinking about taking a chance on it since it’s not as if Nittymaki is going to be the guy that leads them to playoff success.
    —————————————–
    Josh Gorges for Captain!

  34. G-Man says:

    Hawks’ inept cap management is the reason. Not the player agent. A goalie who wins a Cup should get $3 mil and not be low-balled. The way they’re going, Chicago will have a lot of trouble winning enough to make the playoffs.

  35. Clay4bc says:

    Fixed it for you…

    I agree with you but trading him was still the move to makeif Eller turns into a top-6 forward, and Price signs and plays to his potential.

    Too many “if’s” there to be sure now. If both of these things happen, I agree as well.

    __________________________

    Carey Price killed my dog.

  36. RGM says:

    I’m sure that both are disappointed – Niemi was well-liked by his teammates and did contribute to the Cup win, and since it’s doubtful he’ll get $2.75M with another team, that means less for the agent too. Everybody loses. LOL

    —————————————– Josh Gorges for Captain!

  37. Batalla says:

    That highlight reel was a bit weak.  How many actual goals were there?  5?  In any case, the music was not crap (even though I’m not a fan of AC/DC) since that seems to be the soundtrack to the NHL and a classic tune at that.  I would say the crap music is the dull, boring, blues/jazz stuff that typically makes its way onto this site.  Thank God there is no highlight reel made on that!

  38. Mattyleg says:

    I got mixed up because Mason is still on an entry-level contract.

    Yeah, I know about Edmonton, but it’s no more outside than Montreal… Deslauriers is only on for this year, and is a UFA next year.

    Philly’s a good guess.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  39. RGM says:

    Steve Mason is entering his third full season in the NHL. Given that he won the Calder in the 2008-09 seasoon, I don’t think he qualifies under the rookie banner any more.

    Edmonton is a very outside chance given how much they have tied up in Khabibulin, plus they just re-signed Deslauriers and also have Dubnyk in the system.

    My guess? Philadelphia. Sure they locked up the guy that took them to the Cup Finals, but now they have a chance to also sign the guy that sucked less than their guy.

    —————————————– Josh Gorges for Captain!

  40. Mr Dobby says:

    I agree with you but trading him was still the move to make.

  41. Mattyleg says:

    “He’s disappointed” says his agent.

    Uhh… who’s disappointed? Who makes money off the player and made sure he pushed him to arbitration?

    Gimme a break Bill Zito. You’re the reason he’s not in Chicago now.

    Parasite.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  42. Ian Cobb says:

    HIO 2010 Fan Summit Updates–Nov.5,6,7. Itinerary listed on this link

    Book your room at this # and tell them you are with Habs Inside Out Group or HIO to get the deal rate everyone.

     The hotel  number for Novotel reservations is: 1-514-871-2138

    Come out and meet your wonderful  HIO community, see you all in Montreal.!!

  43. Clay4bc says:

    Halak will not and can NOT duplicate his performance….because YOU said so? Oh…then I guess it’s settled, then. Thanks for that.

    __________________________

    Carey Price killed my dog.

  44. RiverviewCanadien says:

    yeah I am not a fan of Coldplay either…

    Now where is some reels with The Ramones, NOFX, Dropkick Murphy’s, Green Day, Rise Against, heck I would take Diana Krall over most crap out there etc

    Actually the first video compilation of Pouliot I saw had Give it All by Rise Against playing. That was pretty good.

  45. Clay4bc says:

    Here’s some perspective for you…

    Niemi was an OK goalie on a great team. Halak was a great goalie on an OK team.

    Big difference there.

    __________________________

    Carey Price killed my dog.

  46. 24 Cups says:

    Lose-lose situation for Hawks, Niemi.

  47. Psycho29 says:

    I could worn a jock and nothing else and won a cup with the Blackhawks!

    (Believe me, none of you need that image so early in the morning!!!!!!)

    :-)

  48. tophab says:

    RIGHT ON. well put manapart.

  49. HabsFanInTampa says:

    Brian Gionta reel was a nice treat. Sure, the AC/DC song is about 30 years old, but not crap. Last year it seems EVERY video reel was backed up by a Coldplay song. Now folks, that’s crap music! :)

  50. Rugger says:

    That’s Alternate or alternating not alternative

  51. RiverviewCanadien says:

    Not a fan of AC/DC…so I agree, crap music.

  52. Storm Man says:

    My post was more about Eller who has not played a min with the Habs is taking french lessons and what a good thing for a 21 year old guy to be doing coming to a city like Montreal. You had to bring Saku into the mix for a reason only you know why, And yes I find it very funny that H-Word never did take french lessons but you have this super love for him as do a few others on here. If you don’t like what I post skip it as I do with yours.

  53. W35T5ID3 says:

    Agreed….Niemi’s a stiff….I could’a won the cup with the Hawks if i were in net….eeeeshhhh……………..Halak to Blues deal was outstanding for the habs.Eller’s gonna be a stud and the future first line centre of this team.Schultz is a gritty guy with skill and toughness that i think will pan out for this team ……Halak will not and can NOT duplicate his ridiculous performance that he had for us in the playoffs with the blues…..he simply cant.THEREFORE  we win this deal cuz ELLER rules!

  54. tophab says:

    he asked to be traded because a goalie half as good was playing when he should have been.price  won 20 of the last 70 he played.can anybody think of  worse goaltending than that ever?

  55. arcosenate says:

    Unfortunate crap reference to AC/DC. 

     

  56. Mattyleg says:

    My bet on Niemi’s destination…

    Columbus.

    All they have is Garon (UFA next year) and Steve Mason, a rookie.

    I see Edmonton as an outside chance.

    Any other guesses?

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  57. W35T5ID3 says:

     Who are AC/DC?

    Are you talking about alternative and direct currents?

     

  58. W35T5ID3 says:

          I bet he wins the calder for rookie of the year next year.I can feel it.His potential to be a dynamic player is unbelievable….I would rather have him on my Habs than hall or seguin…..That’s how highly i think of this kid.He’s gonna be special.

  59. Thomas Le Fan says:

    The Stanley Cup champs drop the goalie “who won it for them” and get nothing for him. So. All those still weeping over Halak’s (who I’ll remind you, did not win cup) trade …  perspective anyone?    

  60. Mattyleg says:

    Whadda ya mean Habs fans would go to a hockey page on August 3rd just because you mentioned their team?

    …oh.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  61. TomNickle says:

    But you didn’t call Tim(Stormman) an idiot, ignorant, stupid, a monkey or any of those choice words that James did.

    And that’s why we get along and respect each other despite the numerous issues we disagree on Ed.

     

  62. Ian Cobb says:

    A bit green yet, but he will be our captain down the road for sure. (unlike George green)

  63. HabFanSince72 says:

    Musical tastes vary. I hear there are even people who still listen to CHOM-FM.

    I don’t think AC/DC are that good, but within their incredibly restricted genre, they had 4-5 good songs, and that’s one of them.

  64. ed lopaz says:

    Storm’s point was not about Saku, I brought up Saku to make the point.

    Storm’s point was that Halak should be criticized for not learning French.

    I felt that was unfair considering even Saku did not learn French.

  65. W35T5ID3 says:

    My stupid azz morning thought that i know most of you will probably not agree with me in:

     

    —-Captain?We went all last season and no captain……is there any rush?Really?Presumably we could go another full season without another captain but Jacques martin has stated otherwise.A captain will be named for this upcoming season.

         However,in my opinion,and i know its probably not really agreed upon by all of you,but,i think that helllll we should go another year with a group of leaders totin’ the “A” on the sweater.No captain,again.Why?Because there really isnt an ABSOLUTE stand out candidate to sport the C.If there wasn’t last season….is there this season?It’s not like the team has changed drastically this summer.In fact, i propose we go another year w/o a captain ….and then following season proceed to name the eventual and 100% only true captain material on this squad ….P.K. Subban.

        Sure,he’s young,full of himself and all that but above and beyond all he’s TOTALLY habs captain material.He bleeds habs….ever since he was a kid…..he’s constantly trying to improve,skies the limit for Subban and he’s already a spectacularly unique player.He loves this team and he’ll be here for a long time……I love his raw ability and his awesome potential…..Godddamnnnit…..WHo’s wit’ me?!??!!!!

     

     

    P.K. all tha way…..

  66. tophab says:

    how good would halak have been if he cared?

  67. ed lopaz says:

    the original point that MANAPART made was absolutely correct.

    Storm was taking an obvious shot at Halak for not learning French.

    I countered that even Saku, who everyone respects immensely, did not learn French, so criticizing someone like Halak for it was ridiculous.

    That was the original issue.

     

  68. ManApart says:

    When i brought that up, it wasn’t even about a specific arguement on that day, it was my take from things as a whole (I didn’t want to go into specifics). Regardless, I was out of line getting personal like that. I went too far. I may still call you out, on what I deem to be less than rational statements, but won’t go over the line like that again.

  69. HabFanSince72 says:

    Why even mention the Canadiens in this conversation?

    To get people to visit your site.

    How many Thrashers fans do you think are looking for stories about their team (even obviously bogus ones)?

    The writer even admits we already have Price and don’t have the cap space for Niemi anyway.

     

  70. madmat411 says:

    Hey Boone! How Is AC/DC Crap Music!?!?!?!?!

  71. punkster says:

    Mike, your HabsWatch article isn’t linked correctly

    FREE TIMO!

  72. ManApart says:

    I didn’t hear that report. Didn’t management and Halak never even speak until he was traded? I know management were going to trade Halak no matter what happened, to give Price back the number 1, without any interference from things like performance or merit. That was their agenda the whole time.

     If I have to rehash how Halak didn’t get a fair shot for the past 3 years, then you really are hopeless. Comparing Price’s benching, because of his ineptitude, to Halak’s last 3 years is just dumb. Totally different. Don’t feel like stating the obvious. What has Halak proved since he became a starter last Jan? Well, there is a lot more proving to go, but he definately proved he’s a better goalie than Price and he proved he was the best option at being the number 1 in Montreal then and now.

  73. J Haul says:

    Why the heck would we trade away a more talented version of niemi and then sign him at that high price tag? Why even mention the Canadiens in this conversation? Silly nhl.com…


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