Multimedia: HIO at practice

Andreas Engqvist centred Brian Gionta and Max Pacioretty because Tomas Plekanec was taking a family day with his wife and newborn son.
By mid-afternoon, Enqvist was on his way to Hamilton.

The lines at practice:

Cole-DD-Cammalleri | Max-Pac-Enqvist (for Plekanec)-Gionta | AK46-Eller-Moen | Darche-Nokelainen-LL

D Pairings: P.K.-Gorges, Emelin-Diaz, Gill-Weber, St. Denis-Campoli

AUDIO: Jacques Martin

•  •  •

The lines at practice:

Cole-DD-Cammalleri | Max-Pac-Enqvist (for Plekanec)-Gionta | AK46-Eller-Moen | Darche-Nokelainen-LL

D Pairings: P.K.-Gorges, Emelin-Diaz, Gill-Weber, St. Denis-Campoli

• Tomas Plekanec has taken a family day. His wife had a baby boy on Sunday


  1. fuhgawz says:

    i see somewhere below he has been sent back to the Dogs …… good …. stay there PLEASE ! ..

  2. RJ says:

    TSN is scheduled to interview Dr. Recchi at 5 p.m. to discuss the anatomy of the knee and what is ailing Marky.

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  3. JF says:

    On Shanahan’s denial that he compared Pacioretty’s hit on Letang with Cooke’s hit on Savard – isn’t it possible to verify what was said?

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I think Shanny’s video tape only works in his basement when he records his Wayne’s World punishment videos. When he meets these players at the NHL head office, they have a strict policy of nothing ever being recorded.

    • Da Hema says:

      That’s pretty funny. Do you really think anyone in the NHL would take minutes or transcribe discussions? Half of them would be in jail if they did. The question is who has more credibility: Brendan “Mr. High-School Non-Completer Now Judge” Shanahan or Max?

  4. HabsRepresente says:

    what happened to Ryan White?

  5. chilli says:

    The Markov thing sucks – but what can you do. Better to be like Crosby and wait until 100% – no matter how long it takes. I don’t care if he comes back this year. Habs are not making the playoffs. Not with this team. I would trade PK for Getzlaf right now. PK has been our worst defenseman this year. We all love him – but he sucks.


    • wall2bay says:

      So what is Getzlaf with his -12? The best centre for the Ducks? Your comment has been the worst this year.

      “I kind of feel sorry for players who never got a chance to be a Montreal Canadien” – Cammalleri

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Wow you show tremendous patience for Markov but then throw all that patience out the window as it relates to PK. The concept of PK for Getzlaf I can understand (may not agree but understand) but the PK sucks part, well….whatever.

    • Bripro says:

      It’s called the sophomore jinx, and many go through it.
      When he comes out of it and starts tearing up the ice again,
      or when he’s coached in such a way that he can show his skills, you’ll be eating your words, and a little chilli to go along with it.

      • Everlasting1 says:

        In repeating a term like ‘sophomore jinx’, people will start believing, accepting in such a thing.

        “For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will smite all the first-born in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the Gods of Egypt I will execute judgments: I am the LORD.” Exodus 12:12

        “We don’t see things as they are, but as we are.” – Anais Nin

    • OneTimer says:

      A. I don’t think anyone would give up Getzlaf for PK.

      B. PK does not suck.

    • RS says:

      After quickly digging himself into a hole of -6 (after 6 games!), PK is now +3. I guess you haven’t noticed but he has turned his game around.

      No, he isn’t putting up a lot of points, but even there he had 3 points in his first 13 games. He has 8 points in his last 14 games. Not bad.

  6. rhino514 says:

    Why is the obvious question not being asked, by the media, by the fans, by anybody??
    Why didn´t Markov have arthroscopic surgery in September since he already had swelling then?? Why did they wait over three months to just see if it would go away with rest, if it is in fact such a minor procedure with no risk as is being said??
    I don´t like to criticize the GM or coach as many on here do, but what was the whole speech about a month and a half ago by Gauthier about having to build up the muscles and joints around the knee, when now it appears it´s debris or some floating scar tissue???

  7. Chris says:

    Regarding Yannick Weber: If some people here are so eager to give him up, than one possible destination would be the New Jersey Devils. They have a somewhat thin defence corps and their head coach, Peter DeBoer was Weber’s coach in the OHL with the Kitchener Rangers and has long been very high on Weber.

    Of course, I actually like Weber and am willing to deal with his growing pains, but that seems to be an increasingly minority opinion. 🙂

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Somehow I doubt whether the folks here who want him gone or the folks like you who want him to stay will have any bearing on whether or not PG trades or keeps him.

    • Habsolutely says:

      habs fans don’t do well with growing pains. they want every player in habs jersey to be a superstar the minute he hits the ice. It’s no wonder a lot of players don’t want to come here.

    • TomNickle says:

      Hard to develop the proper skillset when you have to focus on playing forward and defense each game.

      I have no problem with Weber. I have a big problem with the way he’s been handled. He was making great strides prior to being molded into Mathieu Dandenault.

      He’d be a more than adequate defenseman if he’d been brought up properly.

      • Habsrule1 says:

        Cry me a river. Streit may not have liked it, but it didn’t hurt him. As a matter of fact, it’s how he was used as a Hab which got him the contract that he did. One that I’m glad the Habs didn’t give him.

        Go Habs Go!!

        “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

        • TomNickle says:

          How many games did Streit play at forward? 3? 4?

          Streit was also 27 years old when he took to the ice for the Habs and had been a professional for 8 years already.

          Check your facts slugger and sprinkle in some level headedness.

          • Habsrule1 says:

            Sorry if I disagree that playing a player a few games at forward is going to ruin his career. If anything, it makes him more valuable. He would have been in Hamilton if he couldn’t do it. If he’s good enough, he’ll be playing full time D soon enough.

            I like him and I think he’ll be a decent D one day, regardless of if he plays a few games at forward.

            Go Habs Go!!

            “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

          • TomNickle says:

            You’ll have to show me where somebody here said that his career was being ruined.

            He isn’t playing well on defense because he’s being used at forward also. And in the same game quite often. That’s what people are saying. And you were taking it well beyond that.

            Maybe Martin should put Louis Leblanc on defense for the penalty kill next game. We’ll see how that helps Leblanc’s development.

          • Habsrule1 says:

            Look, I don’t love it either, but as mentioned below, JM is doing what he thinks is best for the team, and I doubt he believes that it will hamper the player all that much. Maybe he’s wrong, but I agree with him. I’d absolutely prefer Weber play 100% on defense, but I just don’t see how this will make a huge difference in what I hope will be a long career. Perhaps they are being very patient with Weber because they know that this isn’t the best way for him to improve, but they feel this is what will help the team right now.

            Go Habs Go!!

            “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

      • V says:

        Tom… I agree with you. But it’s not just about the players development. The coach needs to make decisions based on what the team needs in given situations and clearly he needs Weber to take on a forward role given injuries.

        They are probably both unhappy to do it but both should be prepared to do it in the short term if the team needs it. I doubt it will hurt him significantly in the long-run.

        • TomNickle says:

          If Weber isn’t good enough to be among the six defenseman on the Habs’ roster. The solution is simple. Plekanec, Gorges, Subban and Diaz for powerplay duty.

          You don’t keep a guy on a 4th line that you want hard nosed play from when he doesn’t fit that role just so that he can maybe give you a good shot on net.

          I’m sure that this would draw a ton of laughs but I’d like to see Gill on the Powerplay. And not in front of the net. He’s got an excellent shot that is very accurate.

    • shiram says:

      I’d like to see him stay and grow into a reliable D, but if the right deal comes along, I would not be sad to see him go.

      Markov for 2012

    • JF says:

      Chris – I’m with you on Weber. He’s going through a bit of a rough patch right now, as Diaz and Emelin have also; but development is never in a straight line. I think we need to have patience with all our young defencemen; recent history has shown that we can’t have too many.

    • PureGuava says:

      I like Weber too, he’s young and has a hell of a shot. He will never be a gritty, stay-at-home kinda player, but somebody’s got to pass and shoot the puck.

      I say keep him, Emelin, PK, and Diaz around. Gill and Spatch can’t play forever, and Georges is a great complimentary player that does everything good, but nothing great – other than lead.

      So keep the nucleus of young guys on the blueline with Georges, maybe add a little sandpaper somewhere, and hope for a healthy Markov – and next season the D looks promising. Especially with an in-his-prime netminder.

      Give the other Weber the Gomez money after his buyout.

      How’s that for armchairing?

    • avatar_58 says:

      I think Weber has more upside than Diaz, but Diaz is currently outplaying him. Emelin, due to his size, is automatically higher in the chart.

    • ed lopaz says:

      agree with Chris and Tom about Weber.

      And it doesn’t help that Boone bashes Weber (Swiss Cheese) every chance he gets

      confidence is very shaky right now because, after all this time, his role is still not well defined nor have his defensive skills developed at the NHL level as quickly as he would have liked.

      I know first hand that when a D-man is just breaking into a new league, and a league that will challenge ALL of his D-skill to their highest level,

      it is very difficult to be moved back and forth from d-man to forward.

      the decision making is completely different.

      the footwork, pivoting, accelerating, stopping and starting,

      the cardio is even completely different.

    • Nojo says:

      Weber has had a few bad games lately but with barely 76 NHL games under his belt the expectations seem to be too high. He appears to be smart enough, passes intelligently and has a good shot. But being a liteweight amongst a troupe of liteweight defence (Emelin excluded) is not easy work. Add to that undersized forwards and you have a cocktail mix that makes playing in the defensive zone especially difficult.

      You cannot spend your way out of recession or borrow your way out of debt

  8. Saundies says:

    Congrats to Tomas! Soon little Pleky will be on skates and killing penalties like a boss in no time!

    Good to see Patches back too. I know for a fact I wasn’t the only one who thought 3 games was too much for what looked to me like a good open ice check. I know contact to the head was made and it was unfortunate Letang was injured, but having played hockey myself it’s know that if you pass up on a hit like that, you’re going to hear about it when you come back to the bench.

    I don’t like Louis on the fourth line at all though. I know Moen’s had a great year and he’s a dependable vet, but the guy just isn’t designed to be an offensive hockey player. He’s a proven grinder in this league that can bang bodies when you need him to as well as pitch in a goal or two at the right times. Move LL back up to the third with Eller and AK where he can get some decent minutes and opportunities, just like in LA; If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

  9. “It wouldn’t be fair to you or the fans” -Campoli

    Ugh? What now? Giving a rough time frame of return is somehow unfair to everyone involved?

  10. RJ says:

    Broons are signing core players and Goat continues to do nothing to sign key players. SIGN GORGES AND PRICE NOW. They screwed with Gorges, the ultimate team player and an anchor on D through all these injuries. Gainey the Great refused to sign guys during the season so why is Goat going the same stupid route???

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

    • Gorges and Markov both had big injuries last year. Does anyone else notice that so many fans say signing Markov was a huge mistake because of his injury and not signing Gorges long term was also a big mistake?

      (too bad the time frames werent flipped the other way)

      • Habsrule1 says:

        They had to sign Markov. It’s like Crosby getting the same injury and the team giving up on him. Markov is our Crosby. If we don’t sign him, someone else does. If he does well, I’m sure this site would not be filled with posts about how great Markov looks in a leafs jersey.

        Go Habs Go!!

        “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

    • Curtis O Habs says:

      `Cuz ‘advisor’ Gainey still calls the shots. Big G stepped down in an effort to save his reputation, not to relinquish control of the team.

  11. Steeltown Hab says:

    a few pts

    – Shannahan is a joke plain n simple, either way he’s gonna look like an idiot on the tootoo call tho, I don’t think the play itself was suspendable buy givin the circumstance it may be. The lucic hit was way worse, tootoo didn’t hit a goalie late, he actually had the puck n drove to the net (didn’t try to get out of the way obviously)

    – Re-sign Gorges ASAP

    – Eller and AK are great together, no pt in throwing kostitsyn up the lineup when he does well those two create a lot out there instead JM should give them more ice time

    – Cammelleri, Pleks, and Gio get it goin boys

    -If Eller goes back to the wing when Gomez is back JM honestly should be fired on the spot, not that he doesn’t deserve to be fired already, I know he has injuries (every team does) but his personnel decisions (plek on the pt, n darche on the pp) and the overuse of Diaz has taken its toll on me

    – I dont love PG but he has brought in Eller, Cole, Emelin, Diaz, its JM who needs to use them (which he seems like he knows who his best players are now)

    – Finally there is no reason Palushaj, Engqvist, Darche, etc Deserve more time than Blunden. Blunden was a 4th liner we could use him, him n Darche could be interchanged game to game with Nokia C and White when he’s back.

    – I’m done with Darche even tho he’s a good guy I don’t understand how u let Metro, Halpern, Moore, Pyatt go but for some reason Darche isn’t replaceable

    • shiram says:

      Shanny, yes he is.

      Gorges, yes I agree, but Habs org rarely renew contracts during the season.

      Eller and AK, are awesome, and while Eller still has ways to go, he is improving. Gomez when he comes back takes Nokia spot…

      Pleks has been going all season long, no need to put him with Cammy and Gio who have struggled.

      Markov for 2012

  12. Ian Cobb says:

    Check out these numbers!

    ( 2009 J.Martin season)
    After 27 hockey games in the 2009-2010 season, the Habs had a record of
    12 wins, 13 loses and 2 OT and where sitting around 26 pts in the standings-

    By the end of the season, after 82 games, the Habs had a total of 88 pts that got us in the playoffs, right-
    39 w, 33 loses, 10 OT – We were in 8th position-
    The Habs went 3 rounds, Washington Pittsburgh and the Broad Street Bullies (Flyers)
    before bowing out- but what a series eh!

    (2010 J.Martin 2nd season.)
    Then again, after 27 games in the 2010-2011 season they were 17 wins, 8 loses and 2 OT
    and come the spring, after 82 games played, they had a total of 96 pts- that got us in the playoffs right-
    44 w, 30 loses, 8 OT – We were in 6th place- ( and then Boston showed up eh)

    (2011 J. Martin 3rd season.)
    And this year, after 27 games in the 2011-2012 season they are 11 wins, 11 loses and 5 OT for 27 pts
    we are in 10 th place- so what does this tell you?

  13. madcap_habsfan says:

    congrats to mister turtleneck and his wife on their new little man 🙂

    -“People have to really suffer before they can risk doing what they love.” Chuck Palahniuk

  14. otter649 says:

    The Remembrance Mask that Carey Price wore went to auction & $15,000 USD was raised with the proceeds to charity…….

  15. Timo says:

    Argh… Weber. Why is he practicing on the third D pairing?

  16. RJ says:

    Has anyone thought to ask “Shanny” who the Safety Committee includes??? Let me guess — Campbell and ??????. In his explanation he said “The Safety Committee rules that Max Pacioretty…”

    “My face is my mask,” Gump Worsley

  17. Propwash says:

    Engqvist sent back to Hamilton.

    Being negative has its advantages,
    you’re never disappointed.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      So the whole time Enqvist was hurt, he was making his NHL contract I am assuming. Good for him, probably made as much money while injured up here as he would have in almost 2 months in Hamilton.

  18. Habsolutely says:

    TSN on Max Pac saying that Shanahan did indeed compare it to the Cooke hit. I’m starting to dislike Shanny more and more.

    and this from the TSN article:

    “The Montreal winger cut into the middle of the ice to put a big, high hit on Letang during a game last week in Pittsburgh. Letang suffered a broken nose and was left dazed by the blow and has not played since.”

    He came back in overtime and played? How does TSN figure he hasn’t played since the hit?

  19. 86ontheice says:

    According to last years Hockey News Future watch the Habs are the best drafters. They just don’t develop them. I think impatience from the fans and media contribute to them leaving before they are fully developed.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Maybe a bit unfair. Price,PK and Patches are pretty good no? I kinda think we’ve rushed some youngsters though and when they disappointed we gave up on them.Grabs, Dag’s, SK. Probably 50/50.

      In photo from left to right. Chrisadiens, my Grandson, and me.

    • RS says:

      Trade Weber! Just kidding. By the way, am I the only person who remembers Weber playing some really good games earlier this year (not recently)? He was getting 20 min a game for a bit and looking good. He’s a young D, it takes time to become good and consistent at the NHL level.

      Montreal is a tough place to play. Lots of pressure.

      • G-Man says:

        Actually, yes, do trade Weber. Trade St-Denis, too. Don’t need midgets trying to play D.
        Is it against some rule or something that no one can be taller than PG if they are under 25?

  20. JIMVINNY says:

    According to TSN, Pacioretty is insisting that Shanahan compared his hit to Cooke’s, despite the interview on the Team 990 where Shanahan denied this several times. Shanahan’s position is that while Max isn’t “intentionally lying”, he must be mistaken because of the emotions involved. Based on Max’s history of saying exactly what is on his mind, and also based on Shanahan’s inability to administer with any degree of consistency, I’m going to have to side with Max on this one.

    Shanny, you’re a liar and a fraud. You have zero credibility, and even less of my respect.

  21. ed lopaz says:

    if leblanc is starting the game on the 4th line its because the Habs know that he will be extremely nervous.

    he could barely control the puck in Anaheim he was so nervous – and his puck control is usually excellent.

    4th line lets the habs control his minutes.

    as they did when he played 7 minutes in Anaheim.

    if all goes well, then they will consider adding minutes.

    it is a legit move.

    he is NOT going to stay in the NHL and play 5-8 minutes a night on the 4th line.

    that would be stupid even by JM and PG standards of hockey intelligence.

    and if you think Moen is low maintenance, leblanc will not say 1 word no matter how the Habs use him.

    he was shuffled to about 4 different lines while playing for Junior Canada, and he was effective and hard working no matter where he played.

    Habs hockey is “smart” hockey – we play 5 man defence, not just 2 – we move up the ice as a 5 man unit, we back check with 5.

    • V says:

      ‘stupid even by JM and PG standards of hockey intelligence’…

      They likely forgot yesterday more than you will ever know about hockey. With respect, compared to you, they are Newton and you are the apple.

      • TomNickle says:

        Hard to maintain respect for a coach who uses Yannick Weber on a penalty kill. Hard to respect a guy who forgoes balancing his forward lines with size that can make his team better in favour of hiding a small centreman in his lineup. And very hard to continue to respect a guy who delegates discipline with the consistency of a ball bearing bouncing in a pinball machine.

        • V says:

          I think everyone would admit that decisions (like the ones you refer to) should be made on the basis of sound knowledge.

          JM knows more about the game than anyone on this site; knows more about his players than anyone on this site; and knows more about what the team is actually trying to play like than anyone on this site.

          Why can’t people remember that while they have the right to air their opinions, they are doing so with a fraction of the knowledge JM has in making his decisions. Not understanding why he makes the decisions he makes, does not make him wrong or stupid.

          Why can’t we disagree with the coach without insulting him?

          • TomNickle says:

            Justify Darche being on an NHL powerplay to me please. There isn’t one piece of logic that would persuade anyone with anything on the ball that he should be there ahead of some others on the roster.

            And while you’re at it make a case for Weber on the penalty kill.

      • ed lopaz says:

        when I mention JM and PG’s hockey intelligence, I am NOT comparing them to my own.

        they are being compared to other hockey coaches and GM’s who have NHL experience.

        I don’t think either one of them will get re-hired at the NHL level once this Hab gig is done.

        Why we would want 30 years of losing experience, I really never understood to begin with??

        That used to be good enough for Ottawa and Florida, but suddenly it became good enough for us??

        • TomNickle says:

          Your last statement isn’t fair considering Gauthier’s work in Anaheim and Ottawa and Martin’s work in Ottawa. Being within one goal of the Finals one time and having a team lacking a decent goaltender. That wasn’t on him.

          The rest I’m cool with Ed.

    • TomNickle says:

      Funny thing about the Anaheim game. He was credited with two hits. By my count he had four on his second shift alone. Funny people those statisticians.

      Anyway, moving on. Leblanc puck control has been a small issue. He seems to be thinking too much when he gets possession in the defensive zone. Not uncommon for a rookie. He’s growing more comfortable. I’d rather he sit in the press-box to watch the boys than play on the 4th line though. But that’s just my opinion.

      • ed lopaz says:

        I think he gets 1 game on the 4th line and that’s it.

        I agree Tom that he should not be kept on the 4th line.

        But I have been wrong before – as you know!!

  22. HabinBurlington says:

    So Campoli must be very close to returning if he practised with team in regular contact sweater today. Feels to me like Weber will be the first one out of the lineup replaced by Campoli. Provides PP help and is better defensively. This will be good for the team.

    Of course watch Emelin suddenly be yanked out….

    • ed lopaz says:

      considering how much 4th line forward duty Weber has played for Martin, is it any wonder that he is behind the curve in his development as a d-man.

      this is an example – of you know – when people mention that the Habs are kind of crap in “pro development” of players.

      because the drafting the last few seasons has been very good.

      its developing these drafts at the pro level that has people shaking their heads.

      • JIMVINNY says:

        Please. Weber is only playing at all because of injuries. There are currently 8 d-men on the roster that are better than him, and once any one of the 3 injured are back, he’s not playing d anymore.

        • ed lopaz says:

          do you know how hard it is to play D in the NHL??

          imagine you are 21 years old and now you are asked to switch back and forth from defence to forward.

          that is extremely difficult for anyone to do

          that’s why it is so rare at the NHL, AHL, or even Junior levels.

          even in Midget AAA, it is a rare athlete that can play both positions

          the “experiment” has been a disaster for Weber.

          he is not a good forward, and now he is not even a very good defenceman

          if I was Weber’s agent. I would request a trade.

          they did the same freakin thing to Streit and once he left to Long island he became a solid d-man, and now Captain of that team.

          you will see.

          Once Weber is given a shot at defence EXCLUSIVELY for a full season, he will begin to develop properly as a solid defenceman who can contribute offensively.

          • Habsrule1 says:

            I think Weber is just happy to be making NHL money. If he didn’t play forward on some nights, he’d be in the AHL.
            I’m not sure, but I doubt Weber or his agent are in much of a position to demand anything. I doubt there are very many teams knocking down their doors for his services.
            He’ll do what he’s told.

            Go Habs Go!!

            “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Fair points Ed and while I don’t disagree with you, I just don’t see Weber getting many more chances on D with this club given what the pipeline has coming. Perhaps it is in both Webers case and the clubs best interest that he be traded.

        • ed lopaz says:

          about 1 month ago, I could swear that Weber was playing outstanding hockey on defence??

          Did I dream that, or did that actually happen?

          • HabinBurlington says:

            No you didn’t, which again points to what you said about being treated like a jugglers bowling pin at the circus. He also benefits tremendously when paired with a veteran like a Gorges or Spacek. Between the 4th line experiments and being paired with other rookies has not helped his development or his confidence. I don’t blame Weber in the least, nor entirely JM as the D has been rocked by injuries. But we have what we have currently.

    • savethepuck says:

      I think Emelin has moved up on our D depth chart in the coaching staff’s eyes. He’s getting more ice time, and I’ve noticed him even getting some pk time, which I didn’t see the first 20 games or so.

      “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
      Carey Price

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I agree Burl. Weber has not played well of late. I don’t think Louie on the 4th line makes sense either so maybe Weber moves to 4th line forward and Louie heads to 1st line in Hamilton.

      In photo from left to right. Chrisadiens, my Grandson, and me.

  23. RGM says:

    Well this is getting interesting:

    Apparently not only is Shanahan inconsistent in his rulings, he can’t even stay consistent with what he thinks he said during one of them.

    GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is our year!

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I see no reason for Max to lie about was said, I have no reason not to believe Shanny is a lying sack of poop, given he works for Colon. Only problem for Max is he says, ask PG. PG already spoke this past weekend, he will be resting his vocal chords for a long time now.

    • TomNickle says:

      Absolutely hilarious. Shanahan can call Pacioretty, Schall and Gauthier liars. But Dean Lombardi says that Mike Murphy has a conflict of interest and gets fined $100,000.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        The Hypocrisy coming out of the NHL head office continues, hard to have any faith in that entire group of people.

      • RGM says:

        Just watch. They’ll fine/further suspend Pacioretty for this. You can do anything you want in the NHL, but don’t dare question the integrity of the beyond reproach guardians of the League.

        GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is our year!

        • TomNickle says:

          I enjoyed a nice two month break from the NHL last season when Chara wasn’t suspended. My will isn’t what it once was and I came back for the playoffs. Should have kept my ostrich routine going I think.

          It’s become pretty clear that if you don’t have team alumni in a position of power, you’ll get screwed while teams who do receive preferential treatment and that spits in the face of the game, fans, players, coaches and management of every team who isn’t benefitting from the old boys club round table.

          My question is. Where in the hell is Mathieu Schneider in all of this? Wasn’t he supposed to be a consultant on supplementary discipline.

          Oh, and on the Letang hit. Shanahan essentially rendered the on ice officials impotent. They saw no foul, and one official, I forget which, was taking Crosby to task for requesting a minor penalty.

          Disgraceful stuff, not like they care though.

    • Danno says:

      Shanahan should do the honourable thing under the circumstances and resign.

      He clearly isn’t cut out for the job.


      “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

  24. Tharsis says:

    Some interesting match-ups tonight in regards to the standings…but I guess with the parity as it is, every game has significant implications. The playoff push has to start now!

    So what are the odds that Florida, Tampa and Rangers will all win their respective games tonight?


    Fate leads the willing, and drags along the reluctant.

  25. Wow, that’s pretty lazy of Pleks taking the whole day off, like the kid is gonna change much in a day that he couldnt see him after practice.

    He’s ripping the organization off!

  26. Mattyleg says:

    Hey, anybody heard from JD_?
    Haven’t seen him on here in ages!

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Sakus Evil Twin says:

      He has become disillusioned.

      Last I heard he was trekking, barefoot, through the Himalayan foothills in search of enlightenment…

      No answers, just opinions. Bite me. Och.

  27. habs001 says:

    We finished the last two years in the bottom third of the nhl in scoring…the same position we are now…overall in points we look to be no better than the last 2 years….we just not been able to make that next step…many of our games have looked this year as carbon copies of games the last 2 years..we were able to win more poorly played games and o/t games the previous years but that usually balances out….something has to change as our results have remained the same

    • habsnyc says:

      right now, the ice time is being given to the players with big contracts who are at the end of their prime years or well past their prime years. management must replace those players with young high ceiling players. but it takes time because this management team is highly risk averse.

      Blue, blanc et rouge. Red and White for Canada. Blue for Smurfs.

  28. Danno says:

    The reason people are thrilled with Louis Leblanc is because he did something in LA we haven’t seen in a while with the Habs.

    Instead of just dumping the puck into the corner and chasing after it – and losing possession to the other team – Louis came up the left side and put on the brakes right after he crossed LA’s blue line to make a laser-guided pass to AK. AK then passed it to Eller in the middle who passed it right back to AK who fired it into the net.

    That’s why people are excited about Louis Leblanc. He’s a smart play maker, who, if given a chance can turn the fortunes of the Habs around.

    Our main problem is the lack of goal scoring production. What Louis Leblanc did in LA is a remedy to the ailment.


    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

  29. Tremblant Habs Fan says:

    I like how most people, media and fans alike predict Louis Leblanc as a solid 3rd line center in the future, but as he is about to play in only his 4th game in the NHL, everyone is up in arms that he will be on the fourth line.

    • Ali says:

      Actually, everyone says he will have to move to wing in the NHL. And based on what I’ve read his upside is a second line winger (but you are correct if you mean more realistically he will be a 3rd liner, but thats not his upside), which is why I’m up in arms.

  30. Ali says:

    Hey Louie! Great job kid. We’re glad you stepped up. BTW, you’re on the 4th line today.

  31. savethepuck says:

    JM had some positive things to say about LL in the audio link. Had confidence late in a game with a 1 goal lead to put him on the ice. Like’s his defensive play, and without the puck. Let the kid develop, hopefully there’s not too much pressure by fans and media because his name is LeBlanc and not White.

    “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
    Carey Price

    • habsnyc says:

      Just pretend that LL was drafted 13th overall and is from Denmark. That way we can all cheer for him when he gets seven goals next season as a 21 year old.

      Blue, blanc et rouge. Red and White for Canada. Blue for Smurfs.

  32. Bripro says:

    Monday P.M. Thoughts …slow day at work.
    1. Don’t get stressed out over the line pairings at practice. We all know they mean nothing prior to game time. It doesn’t even mean that if JM starts those lines, he’ll finish with them.
    2. I’ve read some of your posts on taking kids out of hockey. I coached minor hockey for a dozen years or so. Twice at the AA level, and twice as assistant. I might be the exception, but I never witnessed a full bench-clearing brawl.
    And if your child is coached by a principled individual who cares more about the kids than winning, then the kids will do fine. Don’t punish your child because of a few loony-toones. They are the exception!

    • habsnyc says:

      I agree that playing hockey is a positive for kids. But, sending a 15 year old kid on the ice to give/take a beating is child abuse and the coach should be jailed for it.

      Blue, blanc et rouge. Red and White for Canada. Blue for Smurfs.

      • Bripro says:

        If that’s the way the coach approaches it, then absolutely. He should be punished.
        ‘Cause there’s nothing better in the winter than lacing them up.

  33. kakey says:

    Maybe it’s been posted before:

    “Carey Price draws inspiration from Jean Dujardin’s classic French flick Brice de Nice for his All-Star campaign.”!/CanadiensMTL/statuses/143443458093367296

    video link:

  34. kakey says:

    I hope these practice lines are just some experiments but I would much prefer MaxPac back on the DD-Cole 2 and a half men line. They had great chemistry before the suspension.

    And congratulation on the arrival of little turtleneck.

  35. Stev.R says:

    Has Enqvist been called up this whole time or was he just called up this morning. I thought we sent him down a long time ago.

  36. --Habs-- says:

    Fighting makes the game look really intelligent!

  37. sims says:

    do they sell infant CH turtlenecks?

  38. savethepuck says:

    A little on the fence about LeBlanc on the 4th line. 4th line minutes depend on several factors. How well is the 4th line playing, is the score tied, close or do we have a big lead or deficit. How are the players on the top 3 lines playing, because JM could demote somebody. I think it would be hard for JM to put Moen on the 4th line because surprisingly he is one of our top goal scores and playing well while being juggled from line to line to fill holes due to injuries, suspensions. I do feel tho that Moen on the 4th with Darche and Noki would be a better line that could give more quality minutes. Louie on the 4th line still has to play NHL hockey, gets to work on his defensive game at this level etc…
    If Louie is getting 8-10+ minutes/game I’m probably OK with it. If he’s getting 3-7 minutes/game, I agree to send him back to Hamilton. I’ll wait and see how the coaching staff uses his minutes before making an opinion. I don’t think Couturier’s development is being hindered in Philly as their 4th line center.

    “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
    Carey Price

    • TomNickle says:

      Here’s the problem with the 4th line, checking role. Leblanc needs work on offensive creativity. Learning how to give and go at the pro level, developing his shot and release, passing through faster, better coordinated defenders. Opening up ice for himself in the offensive zone, cycling with creative linemates.

      He gets none of that work with Darche(who isn’t an NHL player) and Nokelainnen(who is a borderline NHL player).

      This is like asking Subban to work on his offensive skill set by pairing him with Gill. Had Subban needed work on puck movement, he wouldn’t have been paired with the tower.

      • Stev.R says:

        He needs to learn the defensive game at the NHL level first. If he can’t play defense, then he’ll never be put on the ice in order to play offensively.

        The fourth line has to be good at most of the same things the first line is good at. Forchecking, backchecking, exiting the zone, battling for the puck, passing, positioning, etc.

        I think some people are forgetting that Leblanc isn’t a purely offensive player. He’s a two-way player. He’ll probably never be a ppg player, and thats ok because he is skilled in other areas.

      • savethepuck says:

        I gereally thought players coming out of Junior already had the offensive skills. The difference at the pro level is that they usually have to learn how to improve their defensive game and how they play without the puck. I guess I’m hoping that this 4th line stint is to give LL the opportunity to earn his minutes. If he’s getting his minutes, I’m OK, if he’s not, send him to the Dogs.

        “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
        Carey Price

        • G-Man says:

          It’s all about less time to make those plays. The NHL is the fastest game in the world and when a Dman is out of position these days, it’s not for long, maybe a second or two. Same Dman in junior takes a sec or two longer to recover.
          LL is just being rewarded for playing well on the road. This “he shouldn’t be on the 4th line is harmful for his development” is just complaining for the sake of it. The Habs management saw an opportunity to keep LL for a few more days and took it. With MaxPac back, the lines will be shuffled.

    • habsfanforever7631 says:

      Agree with everything you said.
      I want LL to get a taste of the Bell Center but I don’t want him to play like 3-5 mins a game, better off in Hamilton playing 20 mins. Like you I am interested to see how the coaching staff uses him.

    • matrags says:

      LL is not slated to be a fourth liner in the Nhl. If he is not getting ten to fifteen min with EWller and ak , then send him back to Hamilton for quality minutes in a top six position .

      • savethepuck says:

        I don’t think Philly plans on using Couturier as a 4th line center for his career there either, but that’s where he’s playing now.
        If Louie’s getting decent minutes and is showing he’s developing, I’m OK. Nobody here knows what JM is going to do with him now, based on past experience, I agree it’s easy to assume he’s going to get splinters on his arse. The thing is I’ll wait and see how he’s used.

        “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
        Carey Price

  39. SeriousFan09 says:

    So, Mathias Plekanec for 1st round pick by the Habs in 2030 right? (December birthday dictates draft eligibility of 2030, he’d be 17 for Draft of 2029, yes I checked).

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
    SF09 on Twitter

  40. G-Man says:

    NY Times piece on Boogard should make most parents take their kids out of the game or at least consider it. Time for the NHL to wake up, but what am I saying. Fighting is PART of the game, right? Pure bs.
    When I was cheering Nilan on, I had no idea of the repercussions. 5 minutes isn’t enough. It’s time to legislate it out of the game. This is 2011, not 1911.

    • link?


      You don’t have permission to access /wp-content/cache/supercache/ on this server.

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      I find it extremely disturbing when the fights in junior hockey get the crowds riled and delivering standing ovations. Minors trying to knock each other out is to be cheered on?

      – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
      SF09 on Twitter

      • savethepuck says:

        And TSN continues to show fights in their game hi-lites. I think that should stop.

        “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
        Carey Price

      • shiram says:

        Some people’s priorites are not in the right places.

        Markov for 2012

      • 24 Cups says:

        It gets even more bizarre, Robert. Toronto’s Mayor Ford, and his brother who is an alderman, want to engage the UFC to act as role models and help deal with bullying in the Toronto school system.

        Honestly, nobody could make up stuff like this.

    • tbovs says:

      Fighting is part of culture and with the mainstream love affair with UFC it shows that not all people are sophistcated as you. I have fought in hockey most of my life and outside the rink too cause i was bullied most of my life. Its a skill that humans have needed to lear for the last 500000 years as you needed to defend yourself a lot more. In hockeys stance…you give guys 200+ lbs sticks and tell everyone else … no fighting…but you can slash and spear…(yes i know they are penalties but not seen as severe as fighting.) IF you have played higher level hockey… iwas fortunate enough to play and so did my dad….you know that your emotions get the better of you. If i went out on the street with you and crosschecked you with a stick would you say “I’M TELLING” which wont’ deter anything or would you say “Ok punk don’t do that again or I’m gonna cave the side of your head in with my fist” In so tellingthe hooligan to shut his yap and back off or else….this one seems to work a lot moreeffectively than the other one. I hate staged fights but fighting in the heat ofthe moment to me is ok. Its a close knit game where guys are hitting eachother all the time in close quarterss. I think this game is a hell of a lot more violent than football…notably its faster and has less breaks. So no ,… staged fighting needs to go not the in the moment stuff cause you can’t control that…don’t care if you hire Yogis for each team…aint gonna happen.

      Waht i used to do when i knew i had to fight a guy in the game was tell my coach to put me against him in the lineup and DURING THE PLAY I would hit him with a check wether it clean or not and then we would go. Not after talking on the face off or during the warm up…it was during a hockey play after a hit. It made me feel better and it was more effective than a staged fight.

      • shiram says:

        Culture can be improved upon, and fighting has no merits on it’s own. The idea that letting go of one’s rational and just club someone else has something noble or even ok, well I just can’t accept that.

        Markov for 2012

      • G-Man says:

        The thing of it is that you should not have been forced to fight to keep a spot on your team. Minor hockey leagues have out of control crowds (who have nothing better to do because they are not central to other forms of live entertainment). Screaming and shouting for the combatants may be a good way for the crowd to live vicariously through a player, but we all have to remember that there is a person who is being told his job is to fight or he’s off the team. Shameful.

    • The Dude says:

      It makes me want to take my kids out of all sports”Karate,Gymnastics,Skiing,Football etc” .I’m pretty sure if my children were told too be an enforcer by the coach I would take my kid out of Hockey and punch out the coach! Long live the Xbox..
      Better judgment by parents and none of this could happen imo.

    • Everlasting1 says:

      Been harping about this for awhile. Talk about intent to injure, becomes open season with no repercussions to either participant(s). 2,4,5,10 min. and/or game misconduct – what’s the point? I can hear dON chERRy defendin’ now..”All you kids out,er..part of the game..yea that’s it..know when to drop’em..there’s a code. If ya can’t take it, join da army.”

      “For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will smite all the first-born in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the Gods of Egypt I will execute judgments: I am the LORD.” Exodus 12:12

      “We don’t see things as they are, but as we are.” – Anais Nin

  41. shiram says:

    Penguins Michalek and Letang both passed the quiet room concussion test, but are not diagnosed with concussions.
    When will you learn Penguins??

    Markov for 2012

  42. encore4 says:

    Perhaps if JM hadn’t been so stubborn as to keep playing Lemelin in Ottawa he might very well of won a cup. Perhaps he had never heard of a goaltender by the name of Ken Dryden and what he accomplished in his first playoff series. Perhaps if he hadn’t been so stubborn as to keep playing Gomez for twenty minutes a game in the playoffs last year he might very well of won a second cup. Perhaps someone else would have scored that one goal that was the difference. Perhaps there are supporters who are tired of his play safe never take a risk style that produces a .500 record if the goalie stands on his head. Perhaps there are those who would prefer a greater risk reward approach. Perhaps there are those who would prefer to see the young guns given a little more ice time and a little more freedom in hopes of providing a little more excitement and providing a measurement for the future.

    • TomNickle says:


      And he didn’t have a viable alternative.

    • tbovs says:

      Tell us of this new style…cause it seems that ths new “style” souds like what we really need. *shakes head* A more attacking style means a heavy forecheck and activate D men. We play a 2 1 2 medium aggresive forcheck for about 30 mins of the game…the rest of the time its a 1 2 2 or a 2 3 trap. Still trying to figure out why our “style” is so defensive oriented. We play the trap the same amount as any other team. The biggest difference is when you see our guys collapse and it looks like we are getter baraged by shots and can’t do anything to stop it and you say “attack attack..why can’t we attack”. Well the biggest diference is talent and puck possession. We run short on depth and when we run our bottom two lines sometimes that happens. It has nothing to do with our style of play just our lack of talent. So disagree with the style thing that we see hear nonstop. Just look at what the team plays instead of assuming cause you hear defensive coach and all the other stuff.

    • HabinBurlington says:


  43. shiram says:

    But your nickname is not Rangers17, I don’t understand.

    Markov for 2012

  44. cuzzie says:

    Why, is the water boy sick?

    Mr. Bad Example!

  45. Say Ash says:

    Nice of the kid to wait until Plekanec came back from the west coast trip before being born. That’s putting the team first.

  46. twilighthours says:

    Just a few points

    1) I don’t think the 9-game window has anything to do with Leblanc. He’s already on a pro-contract and so the clock is already ticking on his eventual UFA status. the 9-game window applies to Junior-aged players who either sign the contract or go back to the CHL. Chris pointed this out. Correct me (us) if I’m (we’re) wrong.

    2) It’s a common scouting/development philosophy that you let your prospects dominate at particular level before moving up to the next level. I haven’t followed Hamilton but I don’t think LL’s dominated there yet. Like Patches said, let him get top-6 minutes in the A because he plans on eventually being a top-6 in the show – no point in playing 5 mins a game on the 4th line. (Mind you, I’m not convinced LL will be a legit top-6 player).

    3) I would rather see LL play on the 3rd line because he played pretty well there against L.A. Plus, Moen (in J-Mart’s own words) is a low-maintenance player. Put Moen on the 4th line and he won’t complain, then slide him up if LL plays poorly. I have no beef with Moen playing on the 3rd though because he’s certainly done enough to warrant that ice-time (heck, 1st line minutes on this team).


    • SeriousFan09 says:

      1. 100% correct, 9-game window would have applied to Leblanc last year when he was playing in the Q. He’s already using the 1st year of his pro contract by playing in Hamilton.

      2. I am not 100% Leblanc is a true Top-6 player in the NHL (in the sense that on the majority of NHL teams, he would be a Top-6 skater) but he has shown great ability to adapt to new levels of competition and a solid work ethic, smarts and hard work can take you a long way. Agree he should play the AHL more first, it’s easy to look good in a short stint as a rookie but Hamilton is better for him right nw.

      3. Pretty much what I’ve said all day! Don’t take Leblanc away from where he had success if the point of a Bell Centre game is to reward him, but swap him for Moen if there is trouble.

      – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
      SF09 on Twitter

    • TomNickle says:

      10 points in 14 games with the Bulldogs is dominance. He isn’t ready to be a top six NHL player. But few are before the age of 21.

      There are exceptions to consensus that a player must dominate prior to being called up. Subban is a good example. He did dominate at the AHL level but his speed would have allowed him to enjoy success at the NHL level almost immediately. His speed allowed him to recover from mistakes that a large majority of players his age couldn’t.

      Eller is another one. His strength, even with a thin frame has allowed him to succeed and be a productive player in a checking role(wrong role but that’s another story). And it allowed the team to bring him up a little early too.

      If a player has a specific skill that can be used at the NHL level they aren’t out of place. Leblanc’s appears to be his brains. And brains have allowed a lot of players to flourish early in their careers. Thing is, if he stays, he still needs skill development, and being on the fourth line doesn’t help him there.

      • twilighthours says:

        10 pts in 14 games is not dominance. It’s a good level of success, but not dominance. Dominance is leading your team / being near the top of the league in scoring. Like DD and Patches were when they were called up.*

        *I haven’t actually seen Hamilton play this year.


        • TomNickle says:

          Those were Leblanc’s FIRST fourteen games. He’s playing on an AHL team devoid of offensive playmakers(Avtsin notwithstanding) and has tallied his points coming off of a bad injury.


          • twilighthours says:

            You’re too easily satisfied.


          • TomNickle says:

            I’m sorry but Hamilton’s roster was decimated with Pacioretty, Desharnais, Subban, Trotter, Palushaj and others being taken off of that roster.

            They lack skill at forward and defense.

            Leblanc has been producing his points with elite play on a team without elite players.

            That’s a dominant player at that level.

          • Stev.R says:

            He’s also not superstar offensive player. He’s a two way player. He won’t be putting up big numbers in any league, but he’ll be a good solid player.

  47. j0nHABS says:

    Why would JM put LL on the forth, what good is that going to do him? If they are going to play him there they should just send him back down where he can play top minutes and develop.
    I like what LL has done so far. It would make much more sense to have him play on the third with Eller and AK. Moen has played great so far and does deserve more minutes, but with him on the 4th with Nok and Darche would be a much more effective 4th bruiser/shut down line. Plus JM could run 4 lines and give the 4th more minutes!

    When are we going to strings some W’s together?

    • PureGuava says:

      and people are on Palusaj…He was playing three minutes a game on the 4th line and expected to contribute?? How?

      “Of course I’m crazy, but that doesn’t mean I’m wrong.”
      – Robert Anton Wilson

      • j0nHABS says:

        Palushaj was also a mistake to put of the forth, but LL has much more weight on his shoulders to produce than Palushaj. Put him on the third or send him back! Don’t waste his time playing 7 min a game!

        When are we going to string some W’s together?

        • PureGuava says:

          I have to think that the ‘Gomez Era’ is nearing an end. They can’t keep playing him when the kids are this good.

          “Of course I’m crazy, but that doesn’t mean I’m wrong.”
          – Robert Anton Wilson

  48. Hab-Q says:

    On another note there was a significant anniversary for the Montreal Forum for me this past Friday.

    On Dec. 2, 1973 The Who played there on the Quadraphenia tour.

    I was there standing in front of the stage. Awsome.

    That was the stop when the Who got tossed in jail.

    “”Where have I been? Outta my brain on the 5:15! Outta my brain on the train!”

  49. Rudy says:

    Do we know if Eller will have a call with Shanahan for his hit yesterday?

  50. Pat8987 says:

    I feel like spicing things up this morning…

    Here is my GM armchair for this year’s trade deadline.

    Spacek + Campoli to Florida for Nick Bjugstad or Quinton Howden + 3rd rounder

    Florida is REALLY deep with youth forward prospects and would be willing to move a few bodies to go on a playoff run (something their fans have not seen in a while)

    Cammalleri + Weber to Minnisota for Charlie Coyle + Marco Scandella + 2nd

    Minnisota much like Flordia are in a situation they have not been in a while (make a run) and the need help with scoring.

    Gill + Kostitsyn to Chicago for Brian Bickell + 2nd

    AND the Obvious – Gomez for anyone willing to take him

    Those 3 moves (4 if we can move Gomez) would give us 1) cap space to address needs we have + sign Subban, Georges + Price…2) Give us much needs size up-front with an edge…

    What we get:

    From Florida 3rd rounder +
    Nick Bjugstad –
    Quinton Howden –

    From Minnisota 2nd rounder +:
    Marco Scandella –
    Charlie Coyle –

    From Chicago 2nd rounder +
    Bryan Bickell –

    This would set us up to be deadly for the next 4-6 years!

    Don’t let Gill, Spacek, Campoli go for nothing! Don’t overpay for Kostitsyn…Let’s get something from our 1 true “tradable asset” in Cammalleri

  51. kempie says:

    Slow day and this pot needs stirring. Soooo,
    would anybody do Gomez for Kaberle? They get Gomez for 2 years at 5.5M & 4.5M. We get Kabs for 3 yrs at 4.25. If we’re going to have dead money, it may as well be for a dman with experience who can play & help at least a little bit.

  52. habsnyc says:

    the offense is ranked 21st this year vs. 22nd ly and the defense is 11th vs’8th ly. last year the team was ranked 8th in 5 on 5 play. this year it is ranked 16th. this team has gone from outscoring to tying the opposition at even strength

    price went from being top five in the NHL to being above average during the first 20 games of the season. the offense is in the bottom third and old. price is young and one of the more talented netminders in the league. it is up to price to steal games because no one else on the team is good enough to do that. for montreal to win, Price cannot allow more than two goals. i think they have only won once when allowing three or more goals.

    this lineup that can hold its own, bend not break, in a close game. it cannnot can come back from a two goal deficit. once this team is down 3-1 or worse, there is not enough scoring to defeat a team that traps to protect a lead. it either needs a dangerous powerplay, a gamebreaker or a line with huge chemistry to offset the lack of scoring potential among most of its forwards. but that was the problem last year as well.

    therefore it has to avoid being down by two or more goals. the defense is thin and inexperienced. until veterans return, price has to play above his abilities, not below them. the longer term solution is to develop the young players on the roster, continue to get younger and aim for a three year window of outperformance before Price turns 30.

    Blue, blanc et rouge. Red and White for Canada. Blue for Smurfs.

    • DorvalTony says:

      This is a completely flawed attempt at a formula. You assume that Price is wonderful and never lets in any skunks, that bad goals are the fault of a bad offense? How about the inverse, he’s letting them down sometimes and putting them in a hole by serving up some pies? Shaky goaltending, even if it’s only occasional, makes for a less confident attack.

      “The fish is rotten from the head.”

    • skinniks says:

      last year the team was ranked 8th in 5 on 5 play. this year it is ranked 16th. this team has gone from outscoring to tying the opposition at even strength

      No you have it opposite – if you look at 5 on 5 for and against the Habs were 16th last year (with a 1.01 – score 1.01 goals for every goal scored against them) this year they are 8th in the league (with a 1.12) and they are in spitting distance from 6th in the league (Phi with 1.15).

      The difference this year is a 26th ranked powerplay vs 7th or so (off the top of my head) last year. And last year if you remember the PP was in the bottom 10 for a long stretch to start the season.

      I really want to see what this team can do when they are healthy. PP aside this is the strongest team (looking at numbers and watching the play) that I’ve seen since the year they finished first in the EC. Aside from a few stinkers the vast majority of the losses were games the Habs were in and either played with or outplayed the opposition.

      Puck luck, health, and PP are the issues no matter how much people want to complain about Martin, Markov or Gomez.


      • tbovs says:

        Agree….the 5 on 5 play this year has been much better and if we can ever get that powerplay going things would change drasticly with the standings. So regardless whether you hate JM or SG … not much is going to change. Its too expensive to buy JM with all the clauses in his contract and Scotty G …. too much to buy him out of his contract. And no he isn’t going to the minors…i still shake my head when i read that somewhere. You know that has only happened twice and the guys it happened to (REdden, Souray), one of them is playing great…ish. So since the lock out it hasn’t happened more than twice and what makes you think that the GM of this team would do that even remotely and cast aside all inklings of any chance of a high end free agent. If they play bad then its minors time….AINT GONNA HAPPEN.

  53. RiverviewCanadien says:

    Moen has every right to have more minutes than Leblanc, so I have no issue with Moen on the 3rd line nor do I have any issue with ‘managing’ Leblanc’s time and placing him on the 4th line. Who knows how the game will play and how the bench will be used come puck drop.

    Keep expectations in perspective people. Besides, it was just a practice.

    Besides, Darche will yell at Louis if he makes a mistake, its like having an extra coach on the ice!

  54. Hab-Q says:

    Value of 4th line minutes in the NHL > 1st line AHL minutes

    “I went to a fight the other night and a hockey game broke out”

    ~Rodney Dangerfield

    • Mattyleg says:

      For sure, but I guess the only issue with that is time on ice, which the 4th line sees less of.
      Is 6 minutes per game in the NHL as valuable to a young player as 18 minutes on the ice in the AHL?

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • DearyLeary says:

      Not even close. Learning to be a top producer goes through a development curve. Louis isn’t there yet, if you want him to be a 3rd/4th liner for his career by all means keep him up. If you want him to play useful 2nd line minutes (a reasonable goal) I’d have him playing big minutes in the AHL.

  55. kempie says:

    Congratulations Plex! Somebody get that baby a turtleneck.

  56. Kooch7800 says:

    According to Bob McKenzie on Twitter, Tootoo is having a disciplinary hearing today as well as Fistric.

    If either get suspended I think I am going to stop watching the NHL for awhile as the playing favorites thing will be getting a little old. The NHL is becoming a farce

  57. Mattyleg says:

    (I think the poll should be more specific: Keep him in the NHL on 3rd or 4th line, or down to AHL)

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • shiram says:

      4th line would not do him much good, but it’s still some experience at a greater level. I would mind it if he played on the 4th for his 9 total games in the NHL.

      Markov for 2012

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Matty found some more photos of you in your jersey…. now that I look at them sober, I feel like Gomez having the pictures he has of JM and PG.

      • Mattyleg says:

        Ha! Got ’em over a barrel, eh?
        Going to the doc this week about my hand. Think I broke it or something.
        Ahh, the follies of youth.
        (I’m still a youth, right? Right?)

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

  58. Chrisadiens says:

    Unfortunately, I don’t think JM is concerned with LL’s development. JM needs to win now, and he is going to ice the best players he has available. LL > Palushaj JM is more worried about keeping his job right now than worrying about LL 2 years down the road. JM will play LL for 5 mins, but those 5 mins are better than what Palushaj could give. He has not worried about the future of this kid. If I am right, this is yet another reason to let JM go.

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

    • Le Jadester says:

      Excellent perspective you give.
      I agree.

      Habs, OLE !

    • ooder says:

      the thing is we are not a young team. yes we have a few youngsters like Leblanc, and Emelin (not young but new in the nhl) but not really. We are an average aged team with a lot of veterans. other then leblanc there are not kids to really worry about

      The 2010-11 Stanley Cup was not won, but given

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Well done Chris, a coach coaches to win today, a GM is trying to make sure they also win tomorrow. Easily forgotten.

  59. RiverviewCanadien says:

    Congratulations to Tomas and his wife!

  60. Mattyleg says:

    *posted this on the other thread before I noticed there was a new one!*

    Morning everyone!
    Smiling faces on here today.
    Congrats to the Plekanec family and the new Montrealer!! Yay!!

    Little note on Stubbs’s article… I always get a chuckle when I see reporters getting frustrated by the Habs’ ‘nil-by-media’ approach. I love that about the Habs. Keep it under wraps! Better than having to listen to Burkie prove what a ding-dong he is every other day.

    The thing that irks me a bit about it, however, is that the reporters try to get the readers on their side by saying that them not getting enough information to write an article is also somehow ‘a disservice’ to the fans. I like watching the Habs play hockey. I could give the posterior segment of a common urban rodent about how each player is doing with their treatment, because at the end of the day, it’s just a soap opera that I have no control over.

    It’s like claiming that the broken camera in the bathroom of the Big Brother house is a grave disservice to the show’s viewers, except that those people watch the show for that reason, while I don’t follow hockey to get doctors’ reports, and how I support the Habs doesn’t hinge on when who’s coming back.

    I wasn’t interested in following the media circus surrounding Sid’s concussion, and I’m similarly uninterested in Marky’s situation. Once he’s back and playing, then I’ll be interested in how he’s doing. Until then, the only ‘disservice’ being done is to the reporters, and… well, they do a fine job.

    When they’re not sublimating their frustration into a question of morality.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • shiram says:

      I hate when Pierre Houde whines that the game is going fast without any break for commercials.

      You don’t have permission to access /wp-content/cache/supercache/ on this server.

    • TomNickle says:

      Your disservice to the fans comment is a little bit off in my opinion. Like it or not, people will refuse to buy tickets if Price isn’t in net for a game. They could just as easily refuse to buy tickets if Leblanc won’t be in the lineup. And on the flip side of the coin, they are more inclined to buy tickets if Price is starting or if they know that Leblanc will have a prominent.

      • Mattyleg says:

        Aha. I think I may have been a bit unclear about what I was talking about off the top, but I thought I’d made it clear further down the post. Is it that unclear? (not being smart, just askin’)

        I’m not talking about what players are playing in certain games, I’m talking about the information about Markov’s injury.

        And I think that anyone who doesn’t watch a game because Price isn’t in nets is a fair-weather fan, and I don’t have a lot of time for them or their opinions.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • TomNickle says:

          It’s a complex discussion. Information about the team is relevant to everyone. I too have no problem with the Habs playing their cards close to the chest, the best organizations always do.

    • AliHaba says:

      Hear! Hear!

  61. TomNickle says:

    I see a lot of people aren’t at all bothered by Leblanc being put on the fourth line in practice.

    If nothing else, this morning was an opportunity to practice him with Kostitsyn and Moen. Could have moved Eller up to centre with Pacioretty and Gionta.

    The purposes of having Leblanc up with the big club are to give him a taste of the NHL, get him some valuable experience, reward him for his hard work, and find out where he’s at in his development.

    Putting him with Darche and Noki tells the team very little about his development. Bad move, getting sick of saying that about this coaching staff.

    • Mattyleg says:

      There was plenty of bother on the previous thread, TN.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Le Jadester says:

      That’s one of the many reasons I don’t like JM.
      You would think after all these years of not winning a cup he might change the way he does things ?
      My problem is all this happens with the Habs.
      I wish he coached on a different team and continued to be stubborn and arrogant somewhere else.

      Habs, OLE !

      • TomNickle says:

        Well I don’t think you can attribute Leblanc practicing on the 4th line as arrogance or him being stubborn. Seems like you have a personal dislike for the man.

        I also wouldn’t attribute Leblanc practicing on the 4th line or similar habits as a reason he hasn’t won a cup. Truth of the matter is that with a half decent goaltender in Ottawa he very likely would have had at least one.

        I just don’t like the handling of Weber, Diaz, Eller, Emelin or loading up of one line to hide Desharnais in the lineup.

        • Le Jadester says:

          I hear what yer sayin’ and agree.

          Yes I do dislike JM. And I realize that my dislike for him is completely a personal bias of mine and I respect people who do like JM and support his actions as a coach. I just don’t for some reason.

          Funny, cause Chris Kelly (ex London Knight and went to my old highschool) said JM was the reason he’s in the NHL and thought he did a great job with his development. I still told him he’s a bum and I want him outta MTL. Chris said he can see why fans don’t like him, but he still liked him as a coach.

          I also didn’t like what he did with O’Byrne and SK74.

          It just seems like he uses the same old school approach with the young’ins and I don’t think he’s done as well as he should of. I liked LL with AK and Eller and it just seems like he’s imposing his authority to get a different message sent ?

          WHo knows what goes through his head and why ?

          Habs, OLE !

    • DearyLeary says:

      Agreed. This is by no means time to break a rookie. His enthusiasm should be embraced not broken down.

      Even if this was supposed to be a JM “my way or the highway” move, I’m not sure what would have spurred it on. I haven’t seen any glaring “rookie mistakes” from Louis.

      • TomNickle says:

        He’s gotten lost sometimes when he gets possession of the puck and has been trapped too low in the defensive zone a couple of times. But he hasn’t made any mistakes that have cost the team, and until he does, it’s a guilt free learning process that can only help.

    • LafleurFan says:

      This isn’t intended to be argumentative. Of the several skillsets that any young player has, defensive play is probably the one that needs the most development.

      Unless Louie has the prodigious scoring touch of a Nugent-Hopkins, Seguin, Stamkos, or Giroux, he will most definitely have to have skills in defensive play. To be on the ice at critical junctures of the game, you can’t be prone to the major gaffs that unfortunately P.K., Yannick, and even Mike Cam have been making this season.

      Playing with blue collar players has tremendous value for a rookie.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

      • TomNickle says:

        I understand your point. But I disagree if your analysis of Leblanc is that he’s any less responsible defensively than most on the current Habs roster.

        Sure he doesn’t bring the elite offensive skill set of a top 3 pick. But his work ethic and desire to improve will push the other young players and veterans alike to be better.

        He’s far from a liability defensively.

    • Bullsmith says:

      I have no problem with it whatsoever. He’s a first year pro, and missed a ton of time to injury this season and last. A handfull of games on the 4th line in the NHL is plenty for him to experience. Pat Burns kept Joe Thornton on the 4th line pretty much his whole rookie season. At Louis age (and with his frame) thrusting him into a top 9 role in the NHL may not be doing him a favour. Frankly setting up practice so that it most enables Louis Leblanc’s develpoment and not so that it sets up the team to win its next game would be stupid. This isn’t training camp.

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      I spoke in great disfavour on it in the previous thread Tom. Leblanc’s not here to play with Darche and Nokelainen, what with the 2 goals between them.

      – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
      SF09 on Twitter

  62. spaccamuro says:

    Is something up in Gomez land ? I think so

  63. patience is a virtue says:

    You can think about LL on the 4th line another way:

    If he impresses there, or even creates some offense or a goal, he may get another chance on the 3rd line and might actually stick for real.

    No way JM/PG are going to keep LL up after Gomer returns, UNLESS he proves himself against the odds. So, you can actually think of him playing on the 4th line as his real chance to prove himself.

    Also, it’s simply not fair to bash Moen on the 3rd line right now. He has earned it this season.

    • Ghosts of the Forum says:

      I don’t think it’s bashing Moen per se. I think it’s safe to assume that Moen can be a more effective player on a line with Nokia and Darche than LL. It’s putting players where they’ll succeed. Not that Moen won’t be fine on the third line, but it doesn’t play to LL’s strengths for him to be on the fourth line. That make sense?

      • patience is a virtue says:

        I view it as a test of his strengths. He’s already passed test #1 with flying colours. He doesn’t deserve a star, he deserves to be pushed harder. If he can create offense against the odds on the 4th line, he will have passed his second test with flying colours and then PG has to start to think seriously about the possibility of keeping him up for a longer stretch (and then I suspect he’d be on the 3rd line).

        • Ghosts of the Forum says:

          I see what you’re saying and it’s valid, but where I am coming from is that instead constantly testing the players, the team should be focusing on setting them up to succeed.

          So if LL played well enough with AK and Larry to stay up with the club, he should be kept with them. I know inserting a player back into the lineup means the lines have to be juggled — it was either Moen or LL who was going to be taken out of the top 9. It’s my opinion that Moen is more suited to succeed and bring a bit of scoring to the fourth line.

          But we’ll see — and as someone else has mentioned JM does juggle liness A LOT. So wouldn’t be surprised to see LL with AK and Eller, especially after a PK or something where Moen was on the ice for a while.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Good points, but I would like to present the case the other way. LL had good chemistry with Eller/AK, and it was his best game of the 3. While Moen has played well in many circumstances this year, the guy has made a career out of being the role player grinder/penalty killer that plays on a checking line. By putting Moen with Darche and Nokia you have a complete 4th line JM can trust and roll in any situation. May even be able to resemble a crash banging energy line.

      By putting LL with Darch and NOkia, now all of a sudden one bad shift and JM impersonates the soup nazi and says “No more time for you!” to the 4th line and bingo he starts wearing the crap out of the top 3 lines again.

      If you liked LL enough to keep him up over Palushaj, then keep what you liked!! I just don’t understand the rationale, aside from his usual bizzarro world thinking JM.

  64. Danno says:

    Be aware that JM never keeps his trios intact for very long and LL may very well find himself back with AK and Eller in very short order. At least I hope so.


    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”

  65. CanadienBoy says:

    Vancouver got e new line Higgin ,Kesler and Booth ,3pts each last night

  66. Ghosts of the Forum says:

    Oh, and…where’s Pleks? That’s no good.

    • shiram says:

      It’s posted right there up top:
      • Plekanec has taken a family day. Possibility his Mrs. is having their baby.

      You don’t have permission to access /wp-content/cache/supercache/ on this server.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Uh oh, anyone else notice that recent fatherhood hasn’t been a blessing to this team. Cammy had his child this offseason and has had a slow start with injuries. Gill had his child and then got that bad infection. Now if Plex has a child, either 3rd is a charm or we may have issues.

        Good luck Plex, hopefully everything goes with the family!

      • Ghosts of the Forum says:

        Aha, that must’ve been just added. From fearing the worst to hearing the best. Congrats to Pleks!

  67. savethepuck says:

    “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
    Carey Price

  68. HabsFanMTL says:


  69. Ghosts of the Forum says:

    Oh man JM, you make it hard on a guy to like you…….

    Presumably, the reason LL remained and Paloosh went down is because of the strong play of LL. So if you are going to keep him up, why would you take him off the line that he played well on??

    I know Moen has been playing well, and that’s been a great surprise (8 goals?!), but what in the world is LL going to do on the fourth line? Moen can add a bit of scoring punch to the fourth as well as grind it out, he’s much more suited to it. It’s not a demotion, but putting the right players in the right spot to succeed!

    Nothing to add to what others have said, I’m sure. Just needed to vent.

  70. Obrand says:

    If LL is going to be playing on the 4th line, then I see no use for him up here. Send him back down to Hamilton and let him play top line minutes.

  71. rdiddy says:

    Because why would you leave Leblanc on a line that had great chemistry with Eller and AK from Saturday?

  72. habsfanforever7631 says:

    LL is on the forth line.
    We shoulda kept Palushy.
    If we’re going to keep LL and play him on the forth line, no point of keeping him! Send him down to the AHL and let him play 20 mins.

  73. HabinBurlington says:

    Assume Jaro and Campoli are skating on their own, no contact etc…?

    • vegas says:

      Honestly do you expect JM to place Moen on the 4th Line?
      LL is going to get a taste of the Bell Center and then will be sent down to continue is apprentorship. It’s not a bad thing I see it as a reward. His time will come

      • habsfanforever7631 says:

        I just didn’t want him to play like 5 6 mins on the forth line. Moen could do a better job on the forth, and LL could do a better job on the third. If he is jus getting a taste of the Bell Center, that’s good, but it would be kind of stupid if he played on the forth line for the next 5-6 games. He would be better off in Hamilton playing 20 mins, but i agree he should get a taste of the Bell Center.
        I don’t want the Pacioretty thing all over again.

    • t1tan5 says:

      Campoli is in a contact jersey.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.