Let the games begin

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The Canadiens open their regular season at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto Thursday night.
The lineup will be bolstered by the 11th-hour addition of penalty-kill specialist Blair Betts, picked up on waivers from Philadelphia.

Dave Stubbs sets the scene

Pat Hickey on the Betts acquisition

Power-play needs a boost

Arpon Basu on the importance of Andrei Markov

Cammalleri is stoked for hometown opener

Marc de Foy on the season ahead

Marc Antoine Godin on P.K.

François Gagnon talks to Mike Komisarek

In memoriam for the man who changed everything:

52 Comments

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  2. JoaquindaPark says:

    The difference between the Habs and the Leafs? Look at two additions this week. Both seemingly insignificant. Leafs acquire a 4th line Center Steckel for a 4th round pcik. Habs acquire 4th line center Blair Betts…off waivers. Can anyone argue that Steckel is better than Betts? Betts better than Steckel? 6 of one half dozen of the other. But the Habs keep their pick. Brian Burke is smart but impatient. In the end it will have cost him. Go Habs!

  3. savethepuck says:

    Great article by Apron Basu on Markie. It’s unfortunate that way too many Habs fans have forgotten how good this guy really is.

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

  4. Thomas says:

    Steve Simmons is a knob

  5. slychard says:

    I think the moderator has been suspended, I used the word , retarded ‘ once to describe something and my post was deleted, then a few days ago I saw a post with that same word not get deleted so, yeah, he must be MIA. Now let’s play some hockey!!!!!!!

  6. HabinBurlington says:

    Here is Steve Simmons talking about Leafs/Habs and the fact Burke hates Montreal making playoffs while his team craps the bed every year.

    http://www.torontosun.com/2011/10/05/habs-success-drives-burke-crazy

    And a CBC story on Cole.
    http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/story/2011/10/04/spf-nhl-preview-canadiens-cole.html?cmp=fb-cbcsports

    • RGM says:

      That’s good that blowhard Burkie is so focused on the Habs. Really shows that the priorities are in order and partially explains why he spends so much energy bolstering the Bruins. The funny thing is that I’d wager a case of delicious Molson M that Pierre Gauthier probably does not spend very much time at all pondering the fate of the Maple Leafs and letting it affect his judgment.

      ———————–
      GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is our year!

  7. G-Man says:

    Tis Opening Night and all things are possible. Yeeeeehhhhhhaaaaaaaawwwwwwwwwwwwww!
    GO HABS GO!

  8. JohnBellyful says:

    Habs-Leafs, Tigers-Yankees, provincial election, Big Bang Theory — I’m torn!

    Goal, Habs, goal!

    • Sakukoivumc11 says:

      I can’t believe my somewhat crappy luck……Habs/Leafs season opener and I have to travel 1 hour to cochrane for an 8 p.m. Midget League game to watch my son….just kidding ! Would watch my son play anyday regardless of the game. Here is hoping for another great year by the Habs! A lot of talk of the team not making the playoffs by the so-called experts…..lol….this team looks great on paper and with markov returning soon it will be even better. Go Price Go ! Betts will help this team and was a cheap pick up. All the way for 25 !!

      paolo merenda

      • Duke_Rauol says:

        Good luck to your son, i have to bring a freight train to Moosonee at 0230 tomorrow, who needs sleep right!

        ——————————————————————-
        We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the drugs began to take hold……

    • SPATS says:

      Tiger is also back today and apparently ready to prowl after setting the course record at the medalist in florida recently

      OOH AAH – HABS ON THE WARPATH!

  9. Thomas Le Fan says:

    At the risk of being maligned for actually pulling for my favourite team and believing that they will not only have a good season but will win the North-East, may I just say … GO HABS!!! ON Y VA!!!

  10. caladin says:

    Is it just me or is hickey way off in his article about the power play?
    I agree that the Wiz was a huge part of our PP last year, but it seemed to me that after the first couple of weeks he was very rarely shooting. He was primarily feeding Subban and Cammaleri, and doing it well. If Markov can’t fill that hole nobody can. But even before he gets back Diaz looks like he might do very well in that spot. He has good vision, great small space quckness, enough of a shot to keep goalies/defenders honest and good anticipation.

  11. JohnBellyful says:

    More signs the Canadiens could be in trouble … and signs they’ll do just fine.

    Not good – signs a 25th Cup is still a ways off …
    Players wear paper bags over their heads. AK neglects to cut eye holes
    Official statistician orders stoppage of play to get up to speed on JM’s line combinations
    Players on the bench rest their elbows on the boards – facing the crowd looking for “hot chicks”
    Moen, Gill on the point for power-plays fails to achieve expected success
    Team unveils a fifth line.
    Gauthier calls in scouts after third game to go over next year’s draft.
    Martin gets hit in the head with a puck three times during practice and begins wearing garish sports coats, outlandish ties and loud shirts with high collars to games.
    RDS replaces Hab broadcasts with recreational league bowling
    Plekanec is suspended three games for giving Bruin player “dirty look”
    Habs sign Avery

    Not to worry – signs the team should begin planning the parade …
    Players wear paper bags with smiley faces, showing team morale remains high.
    Price perfects looping pass that sends forwards on breakaways
    Markov returns to action and knocks out an opponent for the season with punishing hits in three consecutive games
    Martin, who’s been working his way through The System handbook for 12 years, finally reaches Chapter 42, page 793, ‘Offence’.
    Gill overtakes Ovechkin on a breakaway, fueling talk THIS COULD BE YEAR!
    Gauthier calls in scouts after third game to go over No. 30 selection in next year’s draft
    HIO sets record: 968 posts in an hour – and there’s not one contrary opinion
    Gomez crosses the blueline and veers to the right
    Turns out Betts is half-brother of NHL commissioner

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

  12. Duke_Rauol says:

    Opening night and of course i just find out ive got to work at 230 am tomorrow! Go Habs!

    ——————————————————————-
    We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the drugs began to take hold……

  13. Propwash says:

    GO HABS GO!

  14. JoeC says:

    Not sure if this was posted but heres a read on BB!!

    Let the hockey begin

    http://www.cbssports.com/mcc/blogs/entry/27694626/31569138

    • HabinBurlington says:

      While Travis Moen is no finisher, Betts will probably enjoy his 5 on 5 time with Mtl more than Philly having two linemates that can skate.

      I expect him and Moen will figure out each other pretty quick given they will be on the ice alot, reg. strength and pk I am guessing.

  15. RGM says:

    MTL Stand Up! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hK0l0XEW3Dw

    Let’s get this season started! Win #1 tonight!

    ———————–
    GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is our year!

  16. Bash says:

    We obviously need a Shanahan type to hand out suspensions to these posters who amp up the head shot personal attacks….

    No wait! These are Habs fans on the receiving end…he might rule that these useless, self indulgent, trashy bullshit, brain-stanchion damaging comments are “just a hockey site poster play”.

    Seriously we need to burn those comments. They should never reach the page!

    “If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” (anon)

  17. RetroMikey says:

    We are going to have a season of ups and downs as in previous years.
    Are we better than last season? Only time will tell.
    As in previous years, we will see what our team is made up of after 20 games.
    And please let’s not post “what if” came back from injury we would fare better.
    Hockey is a team sport and not an individual sport.
    But for me, I say we finish……….7th in the East.
    Good luck to our Habs this year, they are going to need it.

    “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

  18. HabinBurlington says:

    Okay Game Day! Finally we got a game we can officially dissect and start making rash judgements that will obviously carry through the full season.

    PG made a good timely acquisition of Betts, hope he is ready as I am hoping giving Plex a bit of a break on PK duty will do wonders to the productivity of his line 5 on 5.

    Rocking some Habs gear at work, making a few bets with Leaf fans and threw the Habs flag on the truck this morning.

    Lets go boys, nice start would be good. We gotta open two packed barns to start the year, lets make em quiet early.

  19. JoeC says:

    I do with the mods would pull up there sleeves and rid us of some of the trash on here too

  20. PrimeTime says:

    FINALLY!!!

  21. Bash says:

    From Google translation of Godin article :)

    “True to form, then Kostitsyn experienced ups and downs, but he found a way to end the season with 20 goals. Its performance, however, did not achieve an agreement over a year.
    Question: if farts on fire this season, do you give him a long-term agreement in the future?”

    “If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” (anon)

  22. higginrs says:

    Happy first day of hockey 2011-12 everyone!

    My prediction: Habs 4 Leafs 0.

    This will be the year of many shutouts for Price.

  23. ManApart says:

    Losing regular posters? What happened?

    I liked the Betts pick up. I liked that guy since he was with the Rangers. I really didn’t feel Enqvist or the 4th line really helped the team. Betts is a nice role player. One of the best PKers in the league and a big guy who can muck it up.

    Burke made an even better move for his team picking up the best face off man in the league, in Steckal. He’s also a monster in size and should help a Leafs team who, like the Habs, are not physical enough.

    Should be a good game tonight. If Montreal can shut down the Leafs first line, they should be alright.

  24. The_Franchise31 says:

    Finally some hockey tonight! And good on for the Breast cancer auction and r.i.p Steve jobs

  25. HabsPEI31 says:

    Pre-game season opener checklist:

    1) Habs pyjamas? Check
    2) Habs t-shirt? Check
    3) Habs jersey? Check
    4) Habs beer mug and case of Canadian? Check and *burp* check
    5) Habs onesy on the 9-month old? Check
    6) RDS set to go, and cleared DVR of anything but one recording per half-hour, so the game isn’t interrupted and I’m forced to miss a PP opportunity while cancelling the conflict? Check and check (sorry, girlfriend, no wedding show recordings for you).
    7) Played Loco Locass’ “Le But” to get pumped up? Check check check check check check

    8) Habs-Leafs season opener? Don’t really care who they’re playing against, just DROP THE EFFING PUCK ALREADY!
    9) Being a Habs fan? Priceless

    Edit: Tried to have the #8 and ) come out as not a smiley. Can’t seem to change it. Although, looks okay, it just ruins the list!

    “Only a goalie can appreciate what a goalie goes through.” – Jacques Plante

    • HabsPEI31 says:

      Great idea. I’d like to see the pink helmet, let alone the new design he’s rumoured to be wearing this season. The fact the pink he’ll be wearing are only as accents is a nice touch, and not too much of a distraction compared to Dipietro’s pink flash.

      “Only a goalie can appreciate what a goalie goes through.” – Jacques Plante

  26. solomio says:

    After all the BS we’ve been thru in the last day or 2, losing regular posters for various reasons don’t you think its about time we have mods that can get rid of this type of poster?

    jlgib21 says:
    October 5, 2011 8:55 pm at 8:55 pm No i’m not trolling,i’m giving my opinion about AK which is shared by many,you little insignificant piece of excrement

    jg

    “I figure PG has one or 2 moves left to bring the Habs that extra step closer to perhaps being the best in the league.” – Einstein

    • Bill J says:

      I need more coffee, miss read your post.

      For the record I agree with you, the personal attacks are getting way to much to handle around here.


      If you want to add an avatar here, read this and follow the steps

      Go Habs Go!

    • HabinBurlington says:

      @Solomio, while I agree with you and saw that post last night I have one thought. I saw he made a post and you immediately asked him if he was trolling. I find that the constant accusations by people (not you specifically) where they call someone a troll right off the bat isn’t exactly a warm fuzzy greeting. In my limited IntraWeb knowledge calling someone a troll seems to be one of the bigger insults a person can hurl at somone. It doesn’t validate being called a piece or *$%!, but it does seem to start an exchange of unpleasantries.

      • Chorske says:

        Agree. The word troll is overused, and often misused.

        A good rule of thumb is that it’s OK to criticize the opinion, but not the person. And this is a forum for discussion, not conversion: people who don’t share your opinion aren’t fools, or delusional, or “retarded”, or need to give their heads a shake– nor does their disagreement or criticism of the team make them fans of other teams.

        • solomio says:

          Lets get this right ok? He called AK a slug. I asked..What….are you trolling ? The I got nailed with…..you little insignificant piece of excrement
          Chorske you deem that reply to be acceptable.?
          If you’re not part of the solution you’tr part of the problem.

          “I figure PG has one or 2 moves left to bring the Habs that extra step closer to perhaps being the best in the league.” – Einstein

      • solomio says:

        HIB…You really think this comment warranted that rebuttal?
        October 5, 2011 7:47 pm at 7:47 pm AK a slug? What..you trolling?
        Cole & DD don’t replace him they would only be covering his output and then some. With AK it’s his +20 PLUS what Cole & DD add.

        If you’re not part of the solution you’re part of the problem.

        “I figure PG has one or 2 moves left to bring the Habs that extra step closer to perhaps being the best in the league.” – Einstein

  27. solomio says:

    No problem gibby.

    Here’s the post to which you so shittily replied

    solomio says:
    October 5, 2011 7:47 pm at 7:47 pm AK a slug? What..you trolling?
    Cole & DD don’t replace him they would only be covering his output and then some. With AK it’s his +20 PLUS what Cole & DD add.

    “I figure PG has one or 2 moves left to bring the Habs that extra step closer to perhaps being the best in the league.” – Einstein


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