Markov nominated for Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy

BRENDA BRANSWELL
THE GAZETTE

Canadiens defenceman Andrei Markov has been nominated for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy awarded annually to an NHL player who best exemplifies perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to the game.

Markov was selected as the nominee from the Canadiens in a vote by the Montreal chapter of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association. The Masterton trophy winner is chosen at the end of the regular season by a vote of PHWA members.

Markov missed most of the past two seasons due to injuries. He tore his anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee twice and underwent two ACL reconstructions.

He has played in all of the Canadiens’ 45 games to date this season and has the highest average ice time – 24:18 – among the team’s defencemen. A key fixture on the Habs’ power play, Markov got off to a strong start but has struggled defensively of late – his plus/minus differential is -12 – as has the team, which is mired in a late-season slump. Markov’s 27 points – nine goals and 18 assists -is the fourth highest on the team. He is tied for fifth in points among NHL defencemen.

Masterton played for the Minnesota North Stars. He died two days after being injured in a game in 1968 when his head struck the ice.
Five Canadiens have won the trophy named after him since its inception that year – more winners than from any other NHL team.

Former Canadiens captain Saku Koivu earned the honour in 2002 after his remarkable return to play near the end of the regular season after undergoing chemotherapy treatment for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Max Pacioretty won the trophy last year after an impressive comeback season in which he led the Canadiens in points. In a scary, controversial incident the previous season, Pacioretty was knocked unconscious when his head hit the stanchion near the Boston Bruins’ bench as he was checked by defenceman Zdeno Chara.

The other Canadiens to win the Masterton are Serge Savard, Henri Richard and the late Claude Provost.

bbranswell@montrealgazette.com

(Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

280 Comments

  1. 5habfans says:

    Would love to see Prust as Captain – give the team a new identity!

    GO HABS GO!

  2. doug19 says:

    I notice no “we should have drafted Lucic ” comments this year! There are not any comments either about the great Houdini Halak.
    Halak’s save percentage is just .05 worse than Price/Halak’s but the important stat is Halak has won 6 and lost 5. So even though our goalies have not been that great lately WE ARE IN THE PLAYOFFS!!!!
    Will Lucic or Moen catch a train? Will Price stand on his head? Will the Gallys amaze? Stay tuned it will be exciting for some.

  3. Chris says:

    I think that some people misinterpret my stance on Price. I am a fan of Price’s, and I think that he is a top-5 goalie in the NHL.

    Where I have long differed from conventional logic is that I simply don’t think goalies matter as much as people think.

    Here are the goalies that carried their teams to the conference finals post-lockout (Stanley Cup winner in bold, finalist in italics):

    2011-12: Jonathan Quick, Martin Brodeur, Henrik Lundqvist, Mike Smith

    2010-11: Tim Thomas, Roberto Luongo, Antti Niemi, Dwayne Roloson

    2009-10: Antti Niemi, Brian Boucher/Michael Leighton, Jaroslav Halak, Evgeni Nabokov

    2008-09: Marc-Andre Fleury, Chris Osgood, Nikolai Khabibulin, Cam Ward

    2007-08: Chris Osgood, Marc-Andre Fleury, Marty Turco, Martin Biron

    2006-07: Jean-Sebastien Giguere, Ray Emery, Chris Osgood, Ryan Miller

    2005-06: Cam Ward, Dwayne Roloson, Ryan Miller, Jean-Sebastien Giguere

    Over that same time period, the go-to choices for the best goaltenders in the NHL seem to have been Martin Brodeur (1 appearance in a year where he was heavily in the decline), Miikka Kiprusoff, Ryan Miller (2 appearances, but none since 2006-07), Pekka Rinne (0 appearances), Roberto Luongo (1 appearance), and Tim Thomas (1 appearance).

    This is what I meant, Tom, by my comment that the gap between the #1 and the #30 goalies simply isn’t that big. 20 different goalies have gotten “hot” enough in the playoffs to help their team make the conference finals over the past 7 years.

    You are just as likely to see one of the goalies considered to be elite (Ryan Miller) as you are to see a guy that is considered average but is fortunate to play for a good team (Chris Osgood).

    You are as likely to see a young, relatively unheralded goaltender (Ward, Miller, Emery, Niemi, Halak) make a deep run as you to see an established elite, veteran goaltender (Lundqvist, Turco, Khabibulin).

    Based on recent years, I would argue that you are probably less likely to see an elite goaltender on a decent team (like Price or Rinne) go on a deep run as you are to see a mediocre goaltender on a good team (Fleury, Crawford, Hiller/Fasth) get carried on a deep run.

    For this reason, I think that goaltenders are just not quite as valuable as the guys in front of them. Any goalie can get hot for a month, just as any goalie can get ice-cold. I’d love to see Price carry the Habs to the Stanley Cup this season and would gladly devour all crow served to me. But odds are that we’re looking at yet another “mediocre” goalie (Fleury? Crawford? Hiller?) hoisting the Stanley Cup in June.

  4. RetroMikey says:

    Does winning the Masterton fetch a first rounder if we trade the aging Markov?
    Supposed to be an awesome draft this year.
    We get younger, trade a veteran…….kill 2 birds with 1 stone.

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

  5. frontenac1 says:

    Beautiful day,the Lassies are strutting their stuff on the boulevard and the Pints are cold at the Saloon.The Habs Mojo is on its way back amigos! Los Habs Para Siempre!!

  6. GRECOHAB says:

    First of all I want to clarify that I am a Carey Price fan, but I think that although good, he will never be great, and anything less than great won’t win a Cup for us. I actually feel that in the future he may have some issues playing at the level of his contract, so in my opinion we should explore the trade possibility, especially if such move can make us better as a team.

    Secondly there are some goalie situations this year that i think we can take advantage of. In Calgary Kipper is likely playing his last games in a hockey jersey, and Calgary has no starter, backup or prospect goalie coming up. Last time in this position they traded for Kipper from San Jose, and they came up big. In Vancouver its obvious that a goalie will be moved, likely Luongo, not only because there is a matter of ice time, but because he has a bad contract that brings his team above the salary ceiling next year. (i have to mention that Luongo’s bad contract is better than Price’s money wise)

    So here comes some thoughts worth consideration (according to capgeek we have about 5M in cap space next year):
    1. Don’t buy out Kaberle, he has a year left and maybe we can claim something for him at the next deadline. Keep him for depth 7th-8th in the depth chart.
    2. Trade Price to Calgary for the 6th overall?, the 30th overall? and TJ Brodie.
    3. Trade Desharnais and Leblanc (roster player and prospect) for Luongo and keep the last buyout if he declines, the next few seasons
    4. Sign at the off season Clowe 4,5M for 4 years and Murray 2,75M for 2 years, Bickell 1,25M for 3 years, and have 3-4 M in cap space with a line up like

    Luongo-Budaj

    Clowe – Plekanec – Gionta
    Pacioretty – Galtsenuyk – Gallagher
    Prust – Eller – Bourque
    Bickell – Halpern – Moen
    ex. White- Dumont

    Subban – Emelin
    TJ Brodie – Gorges
    Markov – Murray
    ex. Diaz – Bouillion- Kaberle

    Just thoughts here people…i think this would be a team hard to beat….And with the picks i would aim for Nichushkin(LW), Mantha(LW), Fucale(G) and babby Subban at the later rounds…Thanks for sharing…

    • ed says:

      dude, Bergevin is NOT trading Desharnais and Leblanc in the same deal.

      Desharnais is signed long term for a reason.

      Leblanc will get every opportunity to heal properly and another shot at the Habs roster.

      Write it down.

    • Chris says:

      You can’t “keep the last buyout”. There are only amnesty buyouts available this summer and next. After that, we’re back to the old system of a buyout costing you 2/3 of the salary spread out over twice the lifetime of the remaining contract and a cap hit for the entire time.

      With Luongo, that would leave him on the books until the mid 2020’s. No team can go near that contract unless the Canucks use an amnesty buyout on him this summer, which realistically is their only recourse.

    • mrhabby says:

      i cannot see DD going anyway as he was just signed LT by Marc B…(sigh)

      and the Luongo contract is crazy..but if Vancouver would eat 1/2 of the cap then maybe its worth a phone call. Also, Luongo would have to waive his NTC and want to come to Montreal.

  7. ed says:

    Hey Chris, I’ve seen the Swarm used, but it wasn’t NHL, it was Novice House League.

    The whole team Swarms over to one side of the ice, and leaves a 9 year old in front of the net alone.

    The fans are screaming, “spread out! cover the front of the net!”

    Guess Therrien never saw a Novice House League game.

  8. habs001 says:

    Elite A1 forwards are not easy to obtain and right now the Habs dont have one…Hopefully Galchenyuk can become one…

  9. Buzz Lightbeer says:

    Lots of talk of The Swarm™ on here today.

  10. habs001 says:

    If the league wishes the division winner to make the playoffs fine…But they should be seeded based on their points…The only team they should replace is the 8th(still would not be fair but a bit better than now)…

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I agree 100%. A team having a good point year, Montreal or Boston should not have a seed lower then there points indicate. Although something tells me that Washington might be a tough playoff opponent this year.

  11. rhino514 says:

    Let´s make this clear: Gorges is NOT a corrosive force on this team. He fully deserves his place on the team. He´s valuable to the team. If I were going to war, Gorges is a guy I´d want on my side. The fact the team is having trouble getting out of this slump is probably because they need more character guys like Gorges who hate losing.
    Is he a top four defenseman on this team? Maybe not. But he´s definitely an intergal part of the team and fully has the right to voice his feelings. Because he makes mistakes, he can´t say that the team has to play better? Don´t understand that logic. If the effort isn´t there, yes, one should hold one´s tongue, but the guy gets in front of over 300 slapshots a year. How many other guys are willing to do that? All he´s done is say that the team has to play better as a group. He´s actually the only guy, when interviewed, who speaks from his heart, who doesn´t spout out pre-filtered cliches; and he does so without ever disrespecting anyone or singling anybody out.

    • ed says:

      Gorges will be captain once Gionta is gone.

    • Loonie says:

      He certainly has a place on the team, but as a leader(imo) you can’t question the focus and or commitments of others in citation of examples that demonstrate the lack of both qualities while at the same time being a player who repeatedly makes the mistakes you’re correlating back to the characteristics needed.

      Do as I say and not as I do speak.

      There are players on this team currently guilty of awful play. Gorges is near or at the top of that list.

      All I see from him is talk, and underwhelming play.

      • Habfan10912 says:

        I guess I didn’t quite read it that same way, Tom. What I hung onto was his defense of Price which I thought was admirable and showed good leadership characteristics. I don’t know what good it would have done if he had said, “Yeah, I stink and need to be better” but it sure would not have hurt. That is what Price did in fact when he said it “Starts with me”. That should leadership as well.

        • Loonie says:

          All I know is that players don’t take too kindly to being called out in a newspaper by a guy who couldn’t make a correct pot of coffee at the time.

          His play needs to improve, then teammates can be called out.

          • Mattyleg says:

            How did Gorges call anyone out?
            He just said that everyone needs to contribute.

            Him included, is the subtext.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • Loonie says:

            The quote speaks for itself in my opinion Matty.

            He said that they don’t have everyone committed right now and that when you have a guy or two who isn’t it leads to losing battles and failed coverage.

          • Mattyleg says:

            But that’s correct.
            And it changes from game to game and shift to shift.
            I don’t see that quote as putting himself outside the sphere of responsibility.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • Loonie says:

            It was in the context of a losing streak and if what you say is true he called himself an uncommitted teammate without actually saying it.

      • rhino514 says:

        Understandthat he gets a microphone stuck in his face a dozen times a day, more than other players. Maybe 11 out of 12 times he´ll say the sames platitudes for fear of being politically incorrect as anyone else. But the guy absolutely hates losing, and, ok, perhaps technically he shouldn´t imply that some guys aren´t pulling their weight, but you and I know and it must be painfully clear to him, that that is just plain true. And I´m sure he know who it is, but he´d never call anyone out. So out of frustration he says that all 23 guys have to be on the same page. That´s just about the most PC way he could verbally express what he is feeling.
        More PC than saying the group is playing like losers, for example.
        If you take Gorges away, we are left with Gionta type comments all over the place. They are incredible boring and never tell us anything we don´t know. I love Gionta but he never looks or sounds angry, and my point is you need a guy like that. Even if he isn´t playing that well (and I don´t think it´s nearly as easy to isolate his current play from that of the team as you are making it out to be)
        Would it be better if the comments came from a better player as you indicate? Maybe, but no one else is taking that role; better him than no one.

        • Loonie says:

          I agree with what you’ve said. But again, you can’t hold others accountable publicly or privately without first holding yourself accountable.

          And you can’t call your mistakes innocuous and call the same mistakes others are making a lack of commitment.

          This is like blaming somebody for missing the team bus due to a lack of punctuality and excusing yourself because the driver wouldn’t wait for you.

    • The Jackal says:

      Good points.
      Gorges is a leader and a character guy, the good old “good in the room,” except that unlike our favourite ex-Hab, he is good on the ice.
      One of the problems this season is that I think the coaching staff is not using the D very well.

      PK should play the most minutes by far, but the problem is that there is no other guy to pair him with that can play as much and as effectively.
      Because of this they are using Markov too much and Gorges in the wrong circumstances. They need to play Gorges to his strengths, the current system is not suited for him or Markov – two mainstays in our D. I hope they upgrade the D so Gorges and Markov and play 4 and 5 D minutes, Frankie plays 6/7 minutes, and PK plays #1, then Emelin/Diaz 2/3 and a rookie can get the rest.

      ______________________
      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  12. The Jackal says:

    As Steve pointed below in his post, some of the issues are with the coaching staff.

    They have been successful overall, but the swarm system is showing its warts big time, and they have not adjusted.

    I don’t think they are using the system to Price’s advantage.
    I really hope that the boys were just taking their foot off the gas, because if their bad play is due to fatigue then we are screwed with this system. If the team is indeed fatigued then it may be true that the current roster is not built for that intense swarm system. I hope that is not the case, because it has worked for the most part and the lads seem to buy into it.

    On the other hand, the area where I think the coaching staff has fallen short is on adjusting the defensive style of play and having a defensive system that is best for Price.

    The swarm has resulted in really really good scoring chances for the other team when it falters, and it does so at least once a game. I noticed this earlier in the season when people were calling out Price for not stopping a goal, but if you looked at many of the goals scored against us, they are the result of a mistake leading to a great chance in close or backdoor or guy wide open. The coaching has not addressed this, and with the guys playing with less intensity they are losing puck battles and possession in their zone, making the system less effective.

    They should make some adjustments so that teams take shots from the perimeter but the slot and in close are swarmed, or that we make sure we have quick support once we have the puck. I think it’s best to let Price handle the perimeter shots while the D’s job is to make sure there are not high % chances. We have the kind of goalie for that to work.

    As things stand, teams know that if they pressure our D and get a cycle going that we are screwed.

    ______________________
    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • ed says:

      absolutely agree that the “Swarm” has been exposed and other teams have now picked up on how to beat it.

      it would be extremely effective to switch away from the Swarm – and as far as I’m concerned – never go back to it again.

      • Loonie says:

        What’s even more frustrating is that it hadn’t really been that effective this season.

        Our penalty killing has been awful as a result of a lack of change from even strength to the man disadvantage.

        This system is predicated on trusting forwards to play great defensively in front of their net and its defensemen winning all puck battles on the boards.

        Very flawed.

        • mrhabby says:

          and what suggestions do you have for the coaching staff..given the type of players the habs have….small/fast.

          • Loonie says:

            Hard forechecking and backchecking doesn’t depend on an attacking system.

            For example, you can forecheck with two players and dictate that you always have a high man in the offensive zone to control the flow of the opposing team’s rush and exit from their zone.

            In terms of defensive positioning and coverage you can use your first man back to pick up the third opposing forward on entry and in puck support in the event of a dump in. Your second and third forwards coming back to your zone can clog the slot area and keep the puck to the perimeter.

            You’re still battling one on one but you aren’t leaving the smart defensive play to your forwards and the grunt work on the boards to both of your defensemen at once.

            That isn’t a system either, but merely a foundation for one.

            That defensive support by your second and third forwards also makes you more dangerous in your breakout because the support is immediately there and leaves open ice on the opposite side for your third forward to build speed.

          • mrhabby says:

            loon..iam not sure forecheck works with the type of players we have. We don’t have big players that can pound the opposing player and come up with the puck..

            we did back check really well this season but the gaps the last few weeks seem to be really huge .

          • Loonie says:

            Pacioretty, Eller, Bourque, Ryder, Galchenyuk.

            And forechecking isn’t all about size my friend. Gionta and Plekanec have speed that makes them deadly in puck pursuit.

      • Chris says:

        You’ve been around hockey for a while.

        Would the Swarm not be a really hard system for a veteran defenceman to play within? I just think the over-commitment to puck pursuit makes it very hard for a defenceman to actually get the puck out of the zone as the usual passing lanes aren’t there with everybody in a small area.

        Pressure the defenceman while he’s forced to weight for his teammates to spread out and you can get a turnover and a good scoring chance.

        I just don’t think I’ve ever seen a team use this system in the NHL or junior hockey, so it’s got to be odd for the players who have played their whole lives in more conventional systems. I honestly wonder if this isn’t partially to blame for the struggles of Markov and Gorges. Subban and Bouillon like to carry the puck, which might explain why they’ve adapted to this system better than pass-first players.

        • The Jackal says:

          Yeah this is definitely a factor in their play this season.
          They need to adapt to a system that protects high % areas and transitions quickly but that lets Price see many shots as long as they are not dangerous.

          ______________________
          Hockey sine stercore tauri.

        • Loonie says:

          Not to interrupt but the system is the reason I think Gorges is struggling. He’s a passive and reactionary defenseman. Not to say he’s soft but he excels at defending the rush and containment.

          If you were to select a defenseman you want for this system he would be the exact opposite type of player you would look for.

        • mrhabby says:

          the other teams we have played during the slump have figured it out. They forecheck and play dump/chase and pound habs players where they can. Its about imposing the will on a smaller team we have seen this many times.

    • alfieturcotte says:

      How about Price actually playing like a top 10 goalie (not even top 3 like his salary). No system can heal what is ailing our goalie – like the pic the other day, even a beach ball can get by him….get it? The system……..

  13. Strummer says:

    I wonder the Hab’s sports psychology consultant, Sylvain Guimond has started seeing a therapist yet.

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

  14. hab fan in leaf jungle says:

    I admire Markov’s perseverance and he probably deserves the trophy but he is now old and a liability. I think the Habs could do a lot better for the kind of money they are paying him.

  15. habs001 says:

    While one game only…the game vs the Devils could be telling..This should be an easy win for the Habs as the Devils have been elliminated from the playoffs with yesterdays game…This should be a game that the Devils will have no motivation for…The same situation could happen on thursday in Winnipeg…Sat game in Toronto will probably have implications on where each team finishes in the standings…

    • mrhabby says:

      i care about the last 3 games with respect to how the team is playing. The team must however win the last game of the year more so because we will likely play the leafs in 1st round, its that important.

  16. Loonie says:

    b.a.n.n.e.d?

  17. Hammer Hab says:

    can someone explain to me why my old account is ba.nned?

  18. Small_Town_Boy says:

    So, is Ryan Milller better than Carey Price?

    Dat’s wha me tinks

    • ont fan says:

      Just finished 18 holes and hoped the Price thing was over. He’s the goalie for your team for the rest of the year so you may as well cheer for him.

      • habsfan0 says:

        Price will be with the team for the foreseeable future.
        The same cannot be said about the Habs’ goalie coach,Pierre Groulx,if CP doesn’t turn his game around, in a hurry.

        • The Jackal says:

          I don’t think they’ll be doing any kind of quick reaction like that.
          It’s been 4 bad games people. Price has been solid otherwise.
          Relax… or should I say, chill?

          ______________________
          Hockey sine stercore tauri.

      • alfieturcotte says:

        I like your thinking…..for the rest of the year. Hope you are right.

    • rhino514 says:

      Good question.
      I´d venture to say yes. But not by much. And probably not for long.

    • Chris says:

      No. He’s been as maddeningly inconsistent as Price despite obvious talent.

      At the start of the year, I had Price as #4, behind Lundqvist, Rinne and Quick.

      I think Quick has fallen behind Price again, but Lundqvist and Rinne still get the benefit of the doubt due to consistent excellence.

      But for me, there is a big group of players fighting for that #3 spot:

      Price, Quick, Rask, Niemi, Howard, Schneider, Fleury, Lehtonen, Smith…all of those guys are somewhat interchangeable.

  19. SteverenO says:

    Since this thread is about Markov, I thought I would investigate his contribution to the team this year.

    There is no doubt he has been a big factor in the success of the power play, but what about even strength?

    Markovs numbers overall:
    9 G , 18 A , 27 pts — ranked 6th in the NHL among defenseman:

    Markovs numbers at even strength:
    1 G 4 A = 5 Pts.

    I am not sure where that ranks among the league. Lets see how that ranks among his own teamates;

    Emelin: 3G, 9 A 12 Pts– 658 mins @ even strength
    Subban:4G, 7 A 11 Pts– 646 mins @ even strength
    Bouillon 1G, 8 A 9 Pts– 682 mins @ even strength
    Gorges: 2G, 6 A 8 Pts– 787 mins @ even strength
    Diaz; 1G, 5 A 6 Pts– 283 mins @ even strength

    Markov 1 G , 4 A = 5 pts; 757 mins @ even strength
    ranked 6th on the Montreal Canadiens among defenseman:

    Drewiske_ 1 G 2 A – 3 Pts 150 min @ even strength (MTL only)
    kaberle: 0G , 3A – 3 Pts 110 mins @ even strength
    Beaulieu: 0G , 2 A = 42Pts 78 mins @ even strength (corrected )

    Those who have seen my previous posts know that I believe that a player’s contribution should NOT be measured in Goals and assists. I believe that every player on the ice should get credit when his team scores, and should take some blame when a goal is allowed:

    Using that criteria here are the team ranking for defenseman stated as minutes of ice time (even strength)per team goal scored. (i.e. When Subban is on the ice the team scores a goal every 20 minutes)

    Subban: 20
    Bouillon 21
    Emelin: 24
    Gorges: 24
    Drewiske: 25 (includes LAK, and MTL)
    Markov:28

    Kaberle:14 (Limited action)
    Beaulieu; 10 (Limited action)
    Tinordi; 21 mins (limited action)

    Is it possible that Markov has been the least productive defenseman on the team at even strength? Not only is it posssible, it is an incontrevertible fact.

    Does it mean he is less talented than the other defensemen? Absolutely not, It means that this in another example of the coaching staff not recognizing what is going on in front of their eyes.
    They are playing Markov more minutes than he can handle and it is shame to see a talented player, and tremendous competitor be so badly misused. If his minutes were managed properly he most assuredly would be a positive impact on the teams overall performance at even strength.

    Now many Markov cheerleaders here will argue and say that stats are misleading ,and he is playing “tougher minutes” than everyone else, and he has been instrumental at keeping the opponents best players from scoring against us:

    Lets look that defensive performance,again based onminutes of ice time per goal allowed:

    Diaz: 41
    Drewiske: 32 (includes LAK, and MTL)
    Subban: 28
    Gorges: 28
    Emelin: 26
    Bouillon 24

    Markov:20

    Kaberle:28 (Limited action)
    Beaulieu; 26 (Limited action)
    Tinordi; 63 (Limited action)

    So it seems that the opponents have scored more frequently at even strength when Markov is on the ice than any other defenseman.

    To round out his contribution, Markov has been “pretty good” on the penalty kill, right abut average of the other defensemen on the team that have played on the PK unit.

    All this long post is simply to say that the coaches are not effectively utilizing their resources. It is ludicrous that the player with the most ice time among the defensemen is the one who has been the least productive offensively and the least effective defensively.

    Or to put it another way, (leaving the powerplay aside) the success the team has enjoyed this season has not been because of Markov, but is in spite of him.

    Just to reiterate, I am a huge fan of Markov’s. If coached properly his numbers would be significantly better both offensively and defensively.

    The coaching staff should be held accountable. Instead of everyone blaming Price, and calling for Armstrong or Dumont instead of Moen or White, how about we start focussing on where the problem really is….. behind the bench.

    regards,

    Steve O.

    • Rob says:

      Very good post bringing up some new and insightful information. Always nice to see this type of post still exists; the type that once was more common and made HIO the most enjoyable forum on the internet for Habs fans. You know, before all the childish “i’m right, you’re wrong”, “so and so sucks”, and “if you don’t think ‘this’ then you’re a ‘that'” posts became the predominant form of communication

      The Montreal Canadiens: sporting the best AND worst fans since 1909!

    • Chris says:

      I think part of the explanation for his lack of even strength points lies in two areas:

      1) The quality of opposition he plays against is the highest for any Habs defenceman because Therrien seems to think that Markov is his go-to defensive defenceman.

      2) The Habs swarming defensive zone system really minimizes the impact that Markov used to make at even strength. His big contribution was the transition game…he would pounce on a loose puck or steal the puck from his opponent (he is still the team’s runaway leader in takeaways, despite his lack of mobility) and he’d send somebody away on a breakaway or odd-man rush with a smart up-ice pass.

      The swarm takes that play away. The Habs have had fewer breakaways this year than in recent years because they are committing so many players to puck pursuit in their own zone. When a defenceman DOES get the puck, there is nobody in a good position to receive it. Markov is not as strong of a puck-carrier as he was pre-surgery, but his passing is as good as ever.

      I think the Swarm has probably run its course, and we’ll see a more conventional system next season that plays more to the strengths of veteran defencemen like Markov and Gorges.

      I think you are abusing the numbers a little too much to get the end result that the team’s success is in spite of Markov. Markov’s presence has allowed everybody to slide down the depth chart to a more reasonable role. He has helped re-invigorate the power play, although they have been struggling mightily of late (partially because teams are pressuring Subban and he’s not nearly as quick at getting the puck to an open player as Markov has been).

      Like you, I think Markov is being played too much in the wrong role. But I think some of these numbers lack the context of the minutes that are played. When you face Tavares, Crosby, Stamkos, Giroux, Ovechkin, etc. game after game, you are going to be pinned in your own zone more than when you face the second and third lines that the other Habs defencemen face.

      Last season, Subban was on the ice for 23.8 minutes per goal playing much of the season as the #1 defenceman. Getting shifted down the depth chart due to Emelin and Markov being asked to face the toughest lines every night is a big contributor to that improvement to 28 minutes per goal, as is Subban’s improved decison making.

    • AndyF says:

      One of the things this doesn’t show is the quality of opposition. Unfortunately, this year’s Hockey Analytics Player Contribution Reports are not out yet. All we have to go by is last year’s Player Usage Charts to point us toward possible explanations:
      http://www.hockeyanalytics.com/Research_files/Player_Usage_Charts_2012.pdf

      The quality of Markov’s opponents is as important a contributing factor to the conclusions you draw above as anything else. I wouldn’t go as far as you did with it.

      • SteverenO says:

        Some good points Andy, but not sure they hold up to scrutiny,
        Emelin has played 82.5% of his ice time with MArkov, yet he has better numbers than MArkov both offensively and defensively. That indicates that Emelin is more productive when he is NOT playing with Markov than when he is.

        Anyway here is a link to corsi relative quality of competition. Too complicated for my liking.
        http://www.behindthenet.ca/nhl_statistics.php?ds=11&s=13&f1=2012_s&f2=5v5&f4=D&f5=MTL&c=0+1+3+5+11+12+13+14+15+16#

        If your point is that you are confident that the coaching staff know exactly what player to play against which opponents, I don’t buy it. It seems apparent that they don;t even know which are the more effective players on their own team.

        Maybe a Scotty Bowman, or a JAcques Lemaire can juggle their matchups and come out with favorable results, This staff would be best off just rotating their players equally as they quite apparently don’t have much of a clue as to who is best suited for different situations.

        regards,

        Steve O.

  20. youngwun says:

    Everyone go vote for pk subban cover vote nhl 14!!!!

  21. Here are the top 25 goalies salaries from capgeek.

    Player Pos Team Age Start End Length Amount
    1. Rinne, Pekka » G NAS 30 2012 2019 7 $7,000,000
    2. Lundqvist, Henrik » G NYR 31 2008 2014 6 $6,875,000
    3. Luongo, Roberto » G VAN 34 2010 2022 12 $6,714,000
    4. Bryzgalov, Ilya » G PHI 32 2011 2020 9 $6,500,000
    5. Ward, Cam » G CAR 29 2010 2016 6 $6,400,000
    6. Miller, Ryan » G BUF 32 2009 2014 5 $6,250,000
    7. Backstrom, Niklas » G MIN 35 2009 2013 4 $6,000,000
    8. Fleury, Marc-Andre » G PIT 28 2008 2015 7 $5,500,000
    9. Price, Carey » G MTL 25 2012 2018 6 $5,500,000
    10. Kiprusoff, Miikka » G CGY 36 2008 2014 6 $5,000,000
    11. DiPietro, Rick » G NYI 31 2006 2021 15 $4,500,000
    12. Hiller, Jonas » G ANA 31 2010 2014 4 $4,500,000
    13. Lehtonen, Kari » G DAL 29 2010 2013 3 $4,250,000
    14. Halak, Jaroslav » G STL 27 2010 2014 4 $4,250,000
    15. Niemi, Antti » G SJS 29 2011 2015 4 $4,000,000
    16. Brodeur, Martin » G NJD 40 2012 2014 2 $4,000,000
    17. Khabibulin, Nikolai » G EDM 40 2009 2013 4 $3,750,000
    18. Rask, Tuukka » G BOS 26 2012 2013 1 $3,500,000
    19. Schneider, Cory » G VAN 27 2012 2015 3 $3,500,000
    20. Pavelec, Ondrej » G WIN 25 2012 2017 5 $3,250,000
    21. Dubnyk, Devan » G EDM 26 2012 2014 2 $3,250,000
    22. Mason, Steve » G PHI 24 2011 2013 2 $3,200,000
    23. Thomas, Tim » G NYI 39 2009 2013 4 $3,000,000
    24. Anderson, Craig » G OTT 31 2011 2015 4 $3,000,000
    25. Varlamov, Semyon » G COL 24 2011 2014 3 $3,000,000

  22. Ton says:

    Ok………….lets leave it alone…….Price is our goalie………he’ leading the approval survey……………lets see what he gets done in the last remaining games and playoffs………

    Yes (65%, 1,305 Votes)
    No (35%, 701 Votes)

    Total Voters: 2,006

  23. habstrinifan says:

    I got up this morning feeling absolutely positive. We had faced the dreaful slump. Practices were being held. And playoffs were at hand. And of course Burly was back. It seemed we had hitthe ‘reset’ button and was on the way.

    Then I saw Gorges quotes. And had seen P.K’s quotes. And then saw the defense pairings. And although I may be a bit too hasty and reading negatively am a bit worried. Maybe Gorges’ finger pointing held sway.

    I know most of you will call this trolling. But read Gorges’ comments again. And read P.K.s. Which would you prefer to represent the team going into the next 3 games and into the playoffs.

    My entire mood has changed. Damn it!!!!!!!!!!

    • Loonie says:

      If Gorges can’t improve his play he in my opinion needs to stop focusing on leadership for a lot of reasons. And in addition needs to at the very least be bumped down the depth chart.

    • ooder says:

      where did you see their quotes?

      • habstrinifan says:

        Both are in one or two of the previous threads. P.K’s quote is older and responds that the unscheduled practice was not punishmnet but to re-focus and get better. Gorges took the opportunity in his quote to imply that someone on the team wasnt committed to the team concept.. which of course he implied he was. Both quotes can be seen through HIO’s threads.

    • Habtastic says:

      Totally agree about Gorges. The crowd has been more than forgiving for his piss poor performances and Carey’s many re-dos. Wish he would shutup and internalize his suckitude and just get better.

      ————–
      The Drive for 25

  24. shiram says:

    Price/Roy, Price/Halak, Price/Budaj and now Price/the world!
    Almost makes me happy the Habs had Auld, at least everyone agreed on his skill level.

    Price has had some bad games recently, and while his detractor were quick to point that out, the so-called Price-bots were quick to point to the rest of the team also sucking.
    Both are right, as he’s been not as consistently great as most would hope/ think he can be, he’s had 2 seasons of elite play with the stats backing it up, 07/08 – 10/11, while his other 4 seasons, this one included, have not shown the talent and consistency one would expect of a goalie referred as top 5 in the NHL.
    He’s also the 3rd highest cap hit for a goalie, behind Rinne and Lundqvist, out of the top 10 caphits for goalies, Price is the youngest.
    Price does not have much playoff experience at the NHL level, but he faced pressure with the Bulldogs in 07 and won a Calder Cup.

    To me its quite simple, Price has the tools to be great for a long time, he still has room to improve, but he’s already played 300+ NHL games.
    His contract is probably too rich by about a million per year, all the more annoying with the smaller cap, and Price has not played up to that contract, but I believe he can.
    I’m quite alright with having him in nets for the Habs, other teams have gone all the way with lesser goalies.

  25. punkster says:

    Golf courses opening all around the area this week so the best time of the year is fast approaching…round of golf in the morning, playoff games in the evening…and this year we all get an unexpected gift.

    How many here had seriously predicted the Habs would make the playoffs let alone be battling for 2nd in the conference and among the top 5 in the league?

    I’m going to enjoy the next few weeks no matter what happens with the Habs comfortable in the knowledge that they’re on the right track after years of self inflicted derailments.

    Enjoy!

    ***SUBBANGIN’ NOW BABY!!!***

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      Enjoy it?

      PFFFT!!

      I will take my JM note pad and write down all the players that suck.. then post them on here..

      Enjoy it? why the hell would I watch sports if I enjoyed it? The point is to not enjoy it… tear players apart…

      In all seriousness, I am with you.. I am enjoying watching the team grow, a lot of long term pieces in place that are improving.. and Yes, I will get caught up in the excitement if they win their first playoff game…

    • Cal says:

      Now that’s a post pretty much everyone here can agree with.
      -EDIT- I have received a notice that I can’t make comments. What is going on?

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      That’s a laudable attitude, but what if the next couple of weeks bring being swept by the Leafs in Round One, Cherry, Healy and Stock gloating the whole way through?

      If you can maintain your equanimity through that horror than one of four things: (1) you are well-practiced in the Art of Meditation and Mindfulness (2) you are still in your heart a Leaf fan, (3) you have a particularly good supply of Moroccan hash, or (4) it is the Nursing Home and not the Golf Course that beckons.

  26. Mr_MacDougall says:

    OK, lots of Hab bashing recently, mostly of individual players. So I figured I’d make a list of current players and make my preferred long term plan for them.. I also hope to get some responses.

    1) Plekanec: retires a Hab, gradually dropping down the depth chart to a 3rd line center.

    2) PK: retires a Hab, has a 20 year career.

    3) Price: playes out his current contract and EARNS an extension.

    4) Galchenyuk: Improves year after year becoming the first Hab forward since Guy to be considered elite.

    5) Markov: retires a Hab after being extended and dropping to 5-6 on the depth chart remaining a PP threat.

    6) Eller: Becomes a second line Center, potentially a long term Hab.

    7) Emelin: solidifies himself as a 3-4 D who is a stabilizing factor on the Habs back end.

    8) Patch: continues to score, but does not become elite.

    9) Gallagher: unknown

    10) Gorges: Either rides out his contract bridging the gap until NB and JT can take on bigger roles.. or is traded this summer.

    11) DD: has been found to be a marginal NHL’er on a contender, not good enough for top 6, lacks bottom 6 attributes.

    12) Bourque, Gionta, Moen, Ryder, have all had ups and downs, solid NHL’er some stay.. some go…

    • Lafleurguy says:

      ….a quick point, not retaining Saku set a bad precedent……

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        I agree, I still follow him on the Ducks.. He raised his game to an elite level in big games, huge hits, faceoff specialist, timely goals.. he was and is a warrior.

        Tidbit: he never played and AHL game, and is one of few NHL’ers to have a significantly higher PPG ave in the NHL playoffs compared to reg season.

        • Lafleurguy says:

          great info about a great former Hab and captain

          “May you live in interesting times.”

        • Bill says:

          My favourite player when he was with the Habs. Great captain. 10th all-time leading scorer on the Habs, second-longest serving captain. Class act who gave a lot to the city of Montreal through his hospital donations and an all around good guy.

          Gainey chucking him out the door and trading for Gomez is such an awful legacy for Gainey the executive (Gainey the player has an unimpeachable legacy) and indicative of everything that went wrong for the Habs during those years.

          Full Breezer 4 Life

      • ooder says:

        not retaining koivu and bringing the abomination that was gomez was one of the stupidest moves Gainey and co did.

      • showey47 says:

        Koivu wasn’t coming back,he didn’t want to come back,he wanted to get out of montreal. Gainey didn’t show him the door,koivu walk out of it all by himself,well probably ran out the door.

    • wjc says:

      Plecanic moves on when he become free agent.
      P.k. Sparks a bidding war….Habs wish him well.
      Price sparks a lot of interested and is traded before he become free agent. Wins Stanley cup somehere out west.
      Galchenuk improves greatly and forces a bidding war, habs back off and go with new players on there way up.
      wjc

  27. Loonie says:

    I’ve come to the conclusion that a very significant portion of this team’s fans don’t deserve a good goalie.

    Fire away

    • Ton says:

      Good god………….take it like a man..for those who say trade him> well it premature and bashing his character> wrong he is a good guy! ………..for those who say he’s ugly……Timo> his hair and all……..well there balls buster> god love Timo……….state your case> why has he been a good goalie the NHL? State your case…….what’s going on with him now?

    • ElMcFoldo says:

      Trade Price for a young, rugged, scoring winger and tough D and then trade for Luongo on the cheap?

      I like Price but is it such a terrible pipe dream?

    • Lafleurguy says:

      Is it because we put on the wrong jersey’s or inserted the incorrect leg first into our underpants on game days (or forgot to wear clean gitch altogether)? Did the arena forget to sing “Ole. Ole” after Price made a save?*

      “May you live in interesting times.”
      *questionscanbetakenrhetoricallyornot

    • Chris says:

      I’ve come to the conclusion that people don’t actually understand how good the goaltenders across the NHL actually are.

      The drop-off from 1-30 is somewhat small.

      I also think that most NHL fans put far too much stock in the goaltenders as being responsible for teams winning and teams losing.

      Roberto Luongo was good enough to win the Olympic gold medal in Vancouver, probably the highest pressure situation that any goalie in recent memory has faced. Yet he’s a basket case that cracks under pressure because his Canucks wilted against a dominant Boston Bruins team and a very talented Black Hawks team.

      Carey Price is an excellent goalie in a league full of them.

      Goalies that will be available this summer include:

      Roberto Luongo
      Ryan Miller
      Mike Smith
      Michal Neuvirth
      Jonathan Bernier
      Ray Emery
      Jaroslav Halak

      Are all of them as good as Price? No. But the drop-off isn’t so massive.

      As mentioned below, I would never give Price away. He is a very good goalie. But if a team was willing to part with one of the defencemen you listed, I would take a long, hard look at that deal and try to land one of the guys in the list above.

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        Another point about goalies is that, like mutual funds, past performance is not always a good predictor of future performance.

        Nonetheless of the goalies you mention Miller will cost a mint, Luongo has a bad contract, and the others are clearly not Number One material – at least not like Price. It isn’t just how good you can be in any one game or stretch of games. Price plays 70 games a year and gives you very consistent goaltending (except for the last month or so).

        • Chris says:

          I agree. I just think you can cover a less than stellar goaltender if you have a strong defence corps.

          If Montreal could land a top-15 defenceman for Price, I would do that deal in a heartbeat simply because I think goalies in general are over-valued.

          But I wouldn’t trade him for much less. :)

    • FlyAngler says:

      There was many a night that boos rained down on Ken Dryden despite the fact that he won the Vezina Trophy 5 times in addition to 6 Stanley Cups and a Conn Smythe Trophy. People do expect too much from Goalies in Montreal even when it is clear that the five skaters in front of them are leaving them out to dry……..

      “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

    • Cal says:

      HIO needs….Racicot backed up by Steve Penney.

      Talk about sizzle! ;)

      • Loonie says:

        That won’t change anything Cal. The difference between the best and worst goalies in the league is minimal.

        Reimer’s better than Price.

        I wish four games defined a career.

  28. AceMagnum says:

    I had a dream the Habs won the final game of the season in Toronto 2-0 and kicked off a magical playoff run!

    Unfortunately, I don’t have a First Nations heritage….

  29. HabinBurlington says:

    For the golfers out there, found a great drink down in Myrtle that I highly recomend. Simple recipe, Arnold Palmer + Absolut Vodka = John Daly.

    The Arnold Palmer drink (highly recomend) is a line of Iced Tea available, which is a reciped he drank for years. It is Southern Sweet Tea mixed with Lemonade. Love the fact you take a golfer like Palmer add Vodka and you end up with John Daly.

    Turns out I ran into Daly at his golf store in Myrtle Beach on Sunday night of the Masters. He had his big RV in the parking lot of his store there preparing for the Annual Hootie and The Blowfish after the Masters golf tourney in NOrth Myrtle. My buddies and I saw the RV, knew he was in town and went in. Had a few laughs with the fellow and moved on.

    CHeers everyone.

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      Worst thing about a drink like that is you can mix half vodka and half iced tea… gets you licking the floor quick!

      Edit: did you mention you were originally from PEI before?

      • HabinBurlington says:

        That is what I had all week, and yah, I ended up with straight vodka by end of week, but at least my scores finally came down. Couldn’t get enough aiming fluid out of American beer to help my game. :)

        No not from PEI, from the Peg in MB.

        • Mr_MacDougall says:

          Golf on the Island is really, really good.. with the exception of the wind coming off the ocean, can turn a nice little 8i par 3 into guessing with a 5i and coming up short haha

          FYI, if you’re drinking 4 footers are officially gimme’s.. FACT!!!!

          Funny story about Peg, when my GF (who is now common law according to my accountant.. does that save me on a ring???) were moving home from Ft Mac… we were driving on the TCH approaching Peg and I thought it was starting to rain (at night) but it ended up being the most insane swarm of mosquito known to man, for 45 minutes I was hitting them like rain drops! You guys must have skin as tough as leather to survive!

    • Loonie says:

      Picked up two of the big jugs in Raleigh last summer and gave them to my Dad. He enjoyed them.

    • frontenac1 says:

      Sounds confusing,but I Like Daly and Vodka,So sure,Why not. Hey,Amigo! I posted earlier that after the next three games, I put away the Sinatra and Single Malt and Break out the Vodka and Bob Marley. I will give it a go. Saludos!

  30. Lafleurguy says:

    Update on a prior poll question: Who has been the team’s MVP?
    Correct(ed) answer: P.K. Subban.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  31. Maksimir says:

    Well – some welcome news out of practice today..

    looks like Moen headed for the pressbox for at least one game and new defense pairings:

    Markov – Weber
    Bouillon – Subban
    Gorges – Diaz
    Kaberle – Drewiske

  32. Habfan10912 says:

    Moen practicing on the 5th line. Does that mean healthy scratch?

    • habfanacrossthed says:

      Finally that bum can sit up and watch the team play. Good for Colby getting healthy and ready for the playoffs. Feel bad for Dumont, tons of energy and good spirit. Lastly, Congrats to Marky heck of a ride the last few years. The team wouldn’t be where they are if not for his heady play this season.

      GHOD – Go Habs Or Die

  33. Skeptical says:

    Myself I would have to do some serious thinking to get rid of price. But if I did. Bernier would be my choice ….

  34. HabFanSince72 says:

    Fill in the blank.

    Good NHL goalies are like blanks. When you have one you don’t worry too much about getting them, but if you can’t get one you really wish you could.

  35. Lafleurguy says:

    Galchenyuk has almost caught up to Gallagher in scoring. Eller is even with no. 27. These guys along with Subban, Pacioretty, and Price are the keys to our next Stanley Cup run.*

    *nothappenin’in2013.

  36. Bill says:

    First of all, I’m gonna go out on a limb and guess that the guys who are saying Price sucks and should be traded aren’t as knowledgable about hockey or goaltending as the guys who actually draft, coach, and manage in the NHL. So this is a lot of knee-jerk drama from a bunch of armchair QBs. Not saying I know any better, but I’m gonna trust the NHL guys on this one, that’s all.

    Second, to the same guys, get real: if you got your wish and they traded Price, you’d all be doing the same stuff to whoever replaces him. I have never seen a goal allowed by any Habs goalie that wasn’t the start of a flame session on HIO. You will hate the next goalie as much as this one and blame any problems the team has on him.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      By your logic all discussion on this forum is specious.

      • Bill says:

        Was that ever in doubt?

        Full Breezer 4 Life

      • Phil C says:

        For the other knuckle-draggers like me, let me save you a trip to the dictionary:

        spe·cious
        /ˈspēSHəs/
        Adjective
        Superficially plausible, but actually wrong: “a specious argument”.
        Misleading in appearance, esp. misleadingly attractive: “a specious appearance of novelty”.

    • ZepFan2 says:

      You forgot to add they’ll bitch and moan when Price plays great for another team and wins the cup.

      ———————————————————————-
      Ka is a wheel.

      “On we sweep, with threshing oar.
      Our only goal will be the Stanley Cup!” – Danno

      For Your Life

    • habs-hampton says:

      Well said, Bill. And if Price REALLY does suck, who is going to take him? If we trade a guy that is that bad what do we get in return, a 7th round pick in 2014?

    • Loonie says:

      Price’s career was over after the rookie year loss to the Flyers.

      His career was over after the centennial meltdown and being swept by the Bruins.

      His career was over when he lost the starting job to Halak.

      And it was over after two bad pre-season games.

      Something tells me he’ll bounce back AGAIN and be better for it.

    • wlmi says:

      Price has not ‘stolen” a game in years. He gives up weak goals that oldtimers could stop. He is slow side to side. He has slow reflexes for an NHL goalie. His advantage is simply his size. He has a slow glove hand. His lackadaisical attitude is frustrating. He needs to be told to WAKE THE F%^& up!!!!!!!!!!!……Personally I hope he gets traded this summer. Another post says that an NHL goalie coach has stated that with his weaknesses Price will never be more than average. His weak save % are proof. Shit, Dubnyk has a way better save % and he gave up 6 goals in one period in his first game.

      HNIC Leaf bias is disgusting

  37. habzfan2003 says:

    Hey folks.. That home ice is ours! The team didn’t bust their ass all year just to let a little slump (that virtually all teams had this year) prevent us from keeping what is ours! We earned the position we’re in.. Let’s get it together guys! Let’s start game 1 in MTL.

    Go Habs Go

  38. Loonie says:

    Like Subban, if you trade Price you need to be prepared to spend a considerable amount of time looking for an adequate replacement. In addition, that time spent looking is unlikely to provide that replacement.

    Better to look for a replacement while you have an adequate solution than to overreact to four games and dig yourself a deep hole.

    • Timo says:

      If Habs traded Price I am hoping it wouldn’t be for someone like Jocelyn Thibault (note – I am not comparing Price to Roy). How about if Price was traded for a goalie who maybe didn’t such gorgeous silky smooth hair, but instead was a bit better at stopping a beach ball? A goalie who while may not make miraculous saves on occasion wouldn’t give up weak goals on first couple of shots, hence giving it’s team a chance to get in the game should that team decide to take its sweet time to get going. Or just give them confidence.

      Anyway, I just hope that if Price is traded Habs get a solid goalie and another established roster player that will be contributing immediately and not in a bright future.

      • Kfourn says:

        Wow you’re pathetic, hating on someone because they have hair and they use shampoo?

        You’re as moody as a teenage girl. Price is not getting traded. Get over it.

        _______________________________________________________
        Well, he’s kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace “accidentally” with “repeatedly” and replace “dog” with “son.”

        “It’s sad when our rookies have no NHL experience before they jump up to the NHL.” – nunacanadien

        • arcosenate says:

          Well, the trade deadline has passed, but I think Timo was being humorous with the hair comment, he does have a point as far as Price’s play lately vis a vis stopping beach balls, and if they did trade him, I think we would all hope for a good goalie and a roster player.

          • ZepFan2 says:

            “we would all hope for a good goalie and a roster player.”

            All that for a player that has a hard time “stopping beach balls”?

            ———————————————————————-
            Ka is a wheel.

            “On we sweep, with threshing oar.
            Our only goal will be the Stanley Cup!” – Danno

            For Your Life

      • Maksimir says:

        Yeah – they should trade for Reimer.

      • Lafrich says:

        “A goalie who while may not make miraculous saves on occasion wouldn’t give up weak goals on first couple of shots, hence giving it’s team a chance to get in the game”.

        Really? I am with you about the last couple of weeks, but come on. The Habs scored first like 75% of the time, and gave up the fewest first period goals over the first 35-40 games.

    • The Dude says:

      There is a TON of Great Young Goalies out there ….stop with the scare tactics Loonie because lately there is nothing more frighting than a Carey Price first period after 4 shots on net

        • The Dude says:

          Tampa just picked one up from the Sens…how hard was that for them Mr Pricenatic .

          • Loonie says:

            Haha. The grass is always greener eh dude?

            Maybe keep off of it.

          • The Jackal says:

            Dude in the words of The Dude…. you’re just being an a–hole today :D

            ______________________
            Hockey sine stercore tauri.

          • The Dude says:

            See,that is a typical reaction from the Pricebots ,rude ,name calling and sitting in their own pooh, dunces!

          • Cal says:

            The tall one with the 2-4-1 record while with TB?

          • JF says:

            Bishop has played between 20 and 30 games in the NHL (something like that). Not enough to be really confident about how good he’ll be over the long haul or under pressure.

          • Loonie says:

            I’m not going to heed a name calling lecture from somebody who consistently makes inflammatory remarks about somebody they don’t have to answer to and all the while behind the protection of an online forum.

          • The Jackal says:

            .
            ______________________
            Hockey sine stercore tauri.

          • The Jackal says:

            It was a joke Dude, I was just making a reference to The Dude and what he says in The Big Lebowski

            ______________________
            Hockey sine stercore tauri.

          • Loonie says:

            My reply wasn’t to you Jackal

        • Ton says:

          Listen to me Mr Loonie> defending Price as we speak is not fashionable………..its lost all of its leverage…….we hope he can be what we all expect him to be……..but right now anyone can provide a long list of goalies that would have been better that what Price has been of late. And if you play name one……..perhaps two or three that we have under contract! How much worse could those goalies of been?

          • Loonie says:

            Key words…..

            of late

          • The Dude says:

            The Sens had a goaltender problem 3 short years ago and this year they traded their #3 to Tampa who’s now a #1 ….so scary. The Drama here in HIO is soooo made for Queens,eh! And ‘good one’ Jackal’ :)

        • Ton says:

          I cannot find a “reply” click to your threads> of late……no Carey Price has “often” outplayed by opposing goalies and back up goalies……….Biron, Thomas, and for this he was not the go to goalie during their run a couple of years back………….. bottom line he has had a under performing career thus far in the NHL………..Roy said it last week, as well as carbo……..were waiting for the expected brilliance but no Mr Loonie it has not happened to date. Give it up for now!

    • JF says:

      Agreed. Teams that don’t have a good starting goaltender are forever spinning their wheels in search of one. Take a look at the Flyers, with their carousel of tenders over the last few years – although you could argue that organization wouldn’t recognize good goaltending if it hit them in the face. Or how about Tampa Bay, where Steve Yzerman has given up a boatload of picks in the last year alone plus one of the highest scoring rookies to acquire two young goaltenders neither of whom the team can be certain will be good enough.

      Carey Price is a very good goaltender. He is certainly struggling right now, as is the team in front of him. He is almost always a lot better than he’s been the last week or ten days, and sometimes better than he’s been for most of this season. I know he’ll recover his form and start playing well again; but, like a lot of fans, I’m concerned that this might not happen in time for the playoffs. His demeanour and body language are depressingly reminiscent of what we saw in the second half of the centennial season. At that period, he did not start playing well again until the following season.

      But Price is a professional. He takes his job very seriously, works extremely hard, and keeps himself in top shape. He’s also been through a lot of adversity as the Habs’ starting goaltender, so has some experience in dealing with it. He has a good relationship with his goaltending coach and he has access to the team sports psychologist, Sylvain Guimond. He’ll ultimately be fine; I just hope this will be soon.

      But the team should certainly draft a goaltender this spring.

    • Chris says:

      I’m not buying.

      Replacing Subban is infinitely harder than replacing Price.

      Time and time again, we’ve seen that a good team with a solid (but not necessarily elite) defence corps can make many a “mediocre” goaltender look great.

      • Loonie says:

        I can give you as many examples of comparable defensemen to Subban as you could give me comparable goalies to Price.

        • Lafleurguy says:

          Not Bogosian (taken ahead of McDonagh and Subban). Did P.K. heed advice and emulate Pietrangelo in playing the right way? P.K. is a rare find, and is only replaceable by a lucky find. There was a lot of fanfare for the Phaneuf’s, Bouwmeester’s, Regehr’s, and even Cam Barker’s of past highly drafted defencemen. Is Doug Hamilton going to be a better D than P.K.?*

          “May you live in interesting times.”
          *allquestionscanbetakenrhetoricallyandnoreplyneeded

          • Loonie says:

            Karlsson, Pietrangelo, Doughty, Keith, Carlson, Hedman, Letang, Ekman-Larsson, Yandle, Doughty, Voynov, Suter, Weber, Kronwall, Schultz. All very much like Subban.

            Half a season does not an elite defenseman make.

          • Lafleurguy says:

            But how does one obtain one of these other fine D-men without overpaying in a trade or ufa signing?* I agree with you putting Subban in this elite company, but then sense contradiction in implying a few of them are not elite.

            “May you live in interesting times.”
            *theonequestioncanbetakenrhetoricallyandnoreplyneeded

          • Chris says:

            Yes, but I believe that you were joining many of us in arguing that Subban was elite based on his play last season. His offensive game is much better this year, but he had already established himself as an elite defensive defenceman last season when he was playing.

            As for the list of defencemen, I should hope you can come up with a list as long for them as you can of equivalent goaltenders. But there is a catch to this.

            There are 6 defencemen on the ice. There is one goaltender.

            Even if you only consider the top-4 guys to be impact players that dictate the game, that means there should be four times as many guys who are as important to their team on defence as the goaltenders are.

            Can you honestly tell me that there are 40-60 defencemen as good as Subban?

            Because I think there are easily 15 goaltenders in the NHL that are interchangeable with Price. I wouldn’t give him away. But if a team was willing to offer a top-2 defenceman for Price, I would take that trade and then talk to Los Angeles about Jonathan Bernier or to Washington about Michal Neuvirth. They are not as good as Price, but they won’t be far off.

          • Loonie says:

            I can say that if Price’s realizes his potential or something close to it, he’ll win Vezina trophies running away.

            Same theory applies for Subban with the Norris.

            I’d rather have the elite defenseman because he can make the goalie better. But there’s no reason to trade Price based on inconsistency behind porous defense over small stretches.

          • Chris says:

            If Alex Kovalev realized his potential, he would have won every Hart and Art Ross Trophy for a generation.

            Potential is great…but at some point, potential gives way to what you see is what you get. Price isn’t quite there yet, but he’s certainly nearing his plateau.

        • Chris says:

          Subban is among the league leaders yet again in every offensive category, plays heavy minutes and can play against the top line of any team in the league. He is a legitimate candidate for the Norris Trophy.

          Price is near the bottom of the league standings in nearly every goaltender category except for wins, despite playing for a team ranked 5th overall.

          If this was Price’s first personal collapse, I could agree with you. But this is starting to become more of a pattern for him.

          • Loonie says:

            For somebody seemingly as level headed as I’ve known you to be I’d expect you to make the correlation between unbelievably awful defensive play and the valleys in Price’s career.

            Subban having been paired with Gorges has had a tremendously negative impact on the defensive play of this team.

            There’s a reason Deryk Engelland doesn’t play on Pittsburgh’s top defensive pairing.

          • Chris says:

            I think people are far too quick to level awful defensive play as the response every time Price has a bad stretch.

            Yes, the defence is sketchy. But that is true for countless teams in the league. Price has been facing in this collapse with what Reimer has had to deal with his entire career in Toronto. I think everybody agrees that the Leafs defence is a gong show.

          • Loonie says:

            It’s easy to look at shots allowed and think that a team is being bailed out by its goaltender. I don’t see the Leafs surrendering near the quality of shots the Habs have been.

            Price needs to be better and within the next year or so needs to realize his potential and improve consistency. But I wouldn’t be trading him until I already had a replacement who can come near what he’s capable of.

          • Chris says:

            Watch more Leafs games…Reimer probably faces more odd-man rushes and breakaways than any goaltender in the NHL. The Leafs defence is terrible.

  39. HammerHab says:

    I’m sorry but I have to carry this over from the last thread….

    HammerHab: to the guy who said trade price & moen for yakupov, paajarvi & whitney….who exactly would the Habs have as their #1 goaltender?

    Ton: at 6.5 million per year they could have many!

    And how many #1 goaltenders are free agents? So you not only will have to pay for a goaltender but also give up assets….and quality assets. Nobody is giving away #1 goalies for 2nd round draft picks. All this just to get rid of Price. Do you people seriously hate Price that much? Christ…..

    ———————————–

    It’ll always be Habs Inside/Out to me

    • Ton says:

      No Price is a good guy…………but he doesn’t win games, he seldom impacts them as well. His salary calls him to do so! Be a difference maker…………..what I meant is this…….if you set a 6.5 million dollar budget for a goalie> you will find many…….. I hope he does get it together because i love this team and its players………but more importantly this is a winning business! Has Price been a winner> no………can he become one> well the jury is out and his time is running out to show that he can be! My personal opinion based on my years of watching hockey (40 years plus) He will break………..I don’t think he is mentally tough and he now has the money………….he could play in a smaller market or closer to home and play with less pressure. This the difference with other great goalies> Roy was tough mentally, Billy Smith as well, Dryden was incredibly solid and had a methodical way of solving his problems. Contrary to what many are saying> he is 25………I don’t buy it we should have seen him play more consistently at this level……..I don’t understand why it hasn’t happened………its beyond me…..he dominated junior, AHL, but not at the NHL level. He seems very weak especially at the start of games and I just wonder if he needs help beyond a hockey coach to overcome his lack of confidence etc. Otherwise I don’t hate the man……he seems like a very good person…….but I do want a goalie that stops pucks……and I am sure the players want one as well.

      • HammerHab says:

        It’s all well and good to say “I want a better goalie” but who exactly do you want? Who is out there, that is available, that can handle Montreal? I think Price has proven he can handle the pressure of Montreal relatively well. It is a rare breed that can do that. Not only do we need a goalie that can “stop pucks” but they also have to effectively deal with fans booing them and deal with 15 reporters in their face after every game. Do you really want to take a chance on someone else not knowing if they can handle it? Someone like Luongo or Bryz at one point sounded great on paper when they were in smaller markets, but after seeing them in VAN & PHI respectively, I seriously doubt they could deal with the Montreal fans & media as well as Price does.

        Honestly, I think he just needs a change in goalie coach. Roy would be ideal since he’s been there done that.

        ———————————–

        It’ll always be Habs Inside/Out to me

        • Ton says:

          than you appraise things differently than i do……………I can say this….many hab fans are sitting on the edge of their seat when the opposing team take to the offense and in fear that any type of shot can get in behind carrey price these days. As a whole> his career is more along the line of what he can become…..because what we have seen has been less than stellar.

          • HammerHab says:

            I’m curious….would you (or many a hab fan) have said the same thing before the loss to the Leafs 2 Saturdays ago?

            ———————————–

            It’ll always be Habs Inside/Out to me

        • Ton says:

          to answer your question> yes price has been less than stellar in the NHL……..your seeing a patern develop…….we invested in him and now hope that we get an ROI on the investment…..quite a gamble…..we have seen confidence problems, technical problems, which has lead to an inconsistent career. For it he has lost more games than he has won………and has often been outplayed by opposing goalies and his back ups. I hope he can become great

  40. Timo says:

    Dedication to the game. Give me a break. He had 5.5 million reasons to be dedicated. I’d be to. When was the last time Markov blocked a shot?

  41. HabinBurlington says:

    Perhaps our team has taken K-Marts latest offer a little to seriously on the ice in recent games.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I03UmJbK0lA

  42. RS says:

    I’m surprised more people aren’t mentioning the possibility (likelihood in my books) that the Leafs (3 games against FL, TB and Habs) will pass the Habs (3 games vs NJ, Winn and Leafs) and take 4th place.

    The Habs could very well start the playoffs in Toronto my friends.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      People have been dreading it openly for weeks.

      However the Habs should be able to beat NJ and Win, and if we can’t then it’s time to switch our attention to summertime endeavours.

      • RS says:

        Yes, some have mentioned it. But I’m taking it for granted! Stubbs is still advising people that games 1 and 2 will be in Montreal.

        I miss the Expos.

    • habs12 says:

      the odds are still much in MTL’s favor to finish ahead of them…

      • RS says:

        What are the odds that Tor beats Fl, TB and the Habs? Being the 3 worst teams in the east right now (with the possible exception of Carolina), I’d say the odds are pretty good.

        Can the Habs get 3 of 4 points against NJ and Winnipeg? I like the Habs, I like Price, but I’d call that a long shot right now.

        • habs12 says:

          According to the club sports stats website, we have a 32% chance of finishing in 2nd, a 56% chance of finishing in 4th and a 12% chance of finishing in 5th. On the other hand, the leafs only have a 14% chance of finishing in 4th.

          Another way of looking at it: if the habs gain a single point, and the leafs lose a game in regulation, we are guaranteed to finish ahead of them.

          You’re right in the sense that it is still not a lock, and crazier things have happened — especially with the way the habs have been playing — but it is still very unlikely they finish in 5th.

    • mrhabby says:

      its been mentioned many times…were all kind of apprehensive about this week. were not sure what team will show up.

    • JF says:

      I’m not sure that starting on the road would be such a bad thing. The Habs’ home and road records this year are pretty nearly identical. And if you look at our last few playoff series, we did far better on the road than at home.

      This season our only victory against the Leafs was in Toronto, so I’m not sure that it matters which team has home ice. But we absolutely have to go into the playoffs having won the last game of the regular season. We can’t begin a series against them coming off consecutive losses.

    • habstrinifan says:

      As long as MB, MT and the other coaches and the entire team are appoaching the coming days seriously addressing execution, technique, etc and not like Gorges, pointing fingers at which of the perceived ‘silent’ culprit(s) is/are not one of his 20.. then I am confident meeting any opponent anywhere. If MB and MT allow Gorges attitude to prevail and doesnt shut him to F-up then I say get our 4 playoff games in and start not-inviting some guys to ever step foot in Brossard or Bell Centre again. One of which is .. well I’ll leave it right there.

      Time to just hit the ice, practise and practise, and stop judging who isnt being a team guy!!!!!!!! Man I dont know how some people dont see thru his crap!

  43. jols101 says:

    A great many people that are pissed off at the Habs seem to really be pissed off about how much money NHL hockey players make.

    Every 3rd post is about how much money this player makes or how little this player does for x amount of money.

    Some people have to ask themselves if they are bitter at the Habs blowing a few games after clinching a playoff spot or are they bitter because an NHL hockey player gets paid what they do and flippin burgers at McDonalds only pays 9 bucks an hour.

    • Loonie says:

      It can be justified in context. Ticket prices rising partially due to salary increases. Cap space spent on player x that could potentially be better used on a different player.

      But in terms of the bitterness about how much players make in general, there really isn’t cause for discontent in my opinion.

      They generate such substantial revenue that they do for the most part earn their money.

    • Habitforming says:

      I think its more that people know what is expected out of them for the hard earned money they make (no matter what the job is or its salary). Then they spend huge chunks of thier earned income to go and watch teams/players mail it in without any true effort whilst still making huge gobs of money.

      Losing while giving full effort is sport; making millions and taking nights off without effort is tough to swallow when it cost you so much to watch it in person.

    • Lafrich says:

      All these players deserve what they are paid if they give the fan an entertaining product. Non of them deserve what they are paid if the product stinks.
      Unfortunately, too many people are willing to pay tons of dough to go out to the games, and the management takes advantage of this to continue raising ticket prices.
      Want to see the salaries go down? DON’T GO TO GAMES! Didn’t we all say we were going to do this after the lockout?

    • mrhabby says:

      its just stupid….make as much as you possibly can as the window is small.

    • Timo says:

      When professional athletes making millions decide NOT to show up for a game and mail in last 10 or so games of the season – yeah, that pisses me off. However, as a lifetime burger flipper, I am glad to tell you that, at least here in Alberta, flipping burgers pays $10.50 hr. Slightly less than what Carey Price makes.

    • kalevine says:

      Part of the displeasure is a player’s salary relative to others on the team, and what their salary means to monies available to pay others. So, for instance, Price’s salary is 6.5 million, one of the highest for a goalie in the league, so we DO ask him to occasionally stand on his head to keep the opponent off the scoreboard the first few shots in the game, long enough for the team to gain a bit of confidence. He is highest paid on the team (more or less, right?), and he should be having more positive impact than lower paid players, which hasn’t been happening for a while. Similar thing happened with Gomez, only he was playing much worse than almost everyone on the team. Price is only playing about the same as everyone else right now

  44. Mattyleg says:

    Welcome back Burly!
    None of the bad things I said about you while you were gone are true.
    Complete fabrications.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  45. Propwash says:

    Congrats Markov! He like the rest of the team is going through a rough patch at this point, but he deserves the nomination.

    ____________________
    DOOOOOOOOOOOOMED!

  46. I’ve heard whispers from those jump off the bandwagon “fans” that MT is losing the room. While I find that comment ridiculous and since I was never thrilled about the MT hire in the first place, I’m wondering what his role in this collapse has been if any. He’s kept his composure this year, (easy to do when you’re winning), but when you’re getting slaughtered night in and night out, I’m curious as to how HE comes out of this and turns his team around. Will be very telling. Anybody have any views on MT’s role in this?

    Promote the Youth, Support From The Veterans and Remember the Heritage!

    • wjc says:

      1. Fan are fickle, on and off the ‘bandwagon’ in other words win and they are happy, lose and they sulk.

      2. Terrien has them near the top of the east division, no season is without it’s ups and downs. So you start out being skeptical about Terrien and are surprised, but, hit a lull and you can say “wasn’t sure about his hiring. (sitting on the fence is worse then bandwagon jumping)

      3 ‘A collapse’ is too stong, a slump, along with injuries, along with a horrid schedule means some bad games are going to happen.

      4. How they come out of it is practice, rest, resting nagging injuries, resting key players, get out of Montreal, and stop playing games every second night and travelling. Go to a warmer climate, get away from internet gossip and take a deep breath and let the cards fall where they will.

      5. Lose in first round, lose in second round, lose in third round they will eventually lose. If it the first round, they made the playoffs, something to build on. Second round will be a pleasant surprise, and more to build on. Third round and you have reason to be excited.

      6. Every team has up’s and downs, when the ups come is important, because in the Canadiens case it was first 40 games enough to secure a playoff spot and maybe relax a little to much. Now the down will be easily corrected, better defense, better goaltending, more emphasis on the small things, less gambling, not getting behind early and finishing hard. All correctable and will be interesting to see how it works out.

      wjc

      • habstrinifan says:

        I think his use of the word collapse is spot on. Precipitous unexplained and complete break down. Of course they recover but it was a collapse.

  47. Habitforming says:

    Yeah good for him. $15M to play 50 games, tough life, deserves a trophy.
    truth be told he has been bad and lately horrendous since PK was brought back into the fold. His -12 on a good team (top 5 defensively 95% of the season) is just terrible for a #1 Dman. He has become MAB and only a PP specialist.

    I would trade him for whatever I could get ASAP. He will only get worse from here on out in his contract, and that is saying something.

    • An honest opinion….

      Promote the Youth, Support From The Veterans and Remember the Heritage!

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Truly a shame that trade deadline thing is preventing that from happening ASAP…….

      • Habitforming says:

        Wow never thought of the trade deadline stopping a deal. (yep sarcasm) Asap stands for “as soon as possible” so how does June 15th sound then? Is it because I didn’t put an exact date of the freeze being over with or are you just trolling? jeez

        • HabinBurlington says:

          The team is what it is from now until the end of the playoff run. So I suppose my point is simple, I am going to support Markov through that run. After that point and time, then MB can start analyzing who to trade, re-sign, etc…

          My point is simple, why sit here and bitch about a player who has done a great deal for the Habs over his career? He may indeed be near the end, but his play this year helped the Habs to the position they currently sit, that is impressive to me.

  48. Ian Cobb says:

    Goal Differential +19. We are still in 4th place out of 30 teams.

    Last week we were +28, for 3rd place.
    And the week before that we were +29 for 3rd place.

    Not to shabby folks.

    • RS says:

      No one doubts that it’s been a great season! The problem is that they are playing terrible right now. What’s their goal differential over the last 5 games? -13

      Oh well, they might not win another game this year (regular season or playoff), but it was still a fun year and a big step up from last year.

      • wjc says:

        The world hate’s quitters!!!!! Pick yourself up and stop whinning, the Canandiens will eventually lose, but they will go down fighting.

        You should change your attitude, stop feeling sorry for yourself and set and example for others. Conceding defeat sucks! This is not over until the skinning lady jumps.

        wjc

  49. Loonie says:

    Very happy for Andrei Markov. And if this team isn’t in a position next season where it can reasonably feel like it has a chance to win a Cup I hope they trade him to a true contender not named the Bruins so that he has a chance at a championship while still effective.

  50. Maksimir says:

    Good for Marky!

  51. derfab says:

    The 2 plays that seem to have shaken their confidence and sent the Habs into this spin: Emelin’s attempt to hit Lucic and the subsequent injury; Ryder’s non-hit on Ovechkin and the subsequent, weak goal on Price. They need to go back to both of these plays, dust off and come back fighting as a team.

  52. kalevine says:

    I like to watch the Habs and I like to see them play well or at least give a good effort. But when they play horribly and get humiliated, I feel like I have wasted my time when I could have been doing something else. But I keep watching and getting disappointed. Does that make me a bad fan?

  53. Top Corner says:

    Andrei Markov-Drafted a HAB – will retire a HAB !! Rare these days.

    Gonna be a GREAT week. I’am behind this team 100% !!! I feel a huge CHange in the winds today. This team (other than getting rid of Gomez, and swapping Cole for Ryder) has not made any huge change from last year. The young guns have been a great suprise . I knew as soon as they changed the office staff/GM/Coach etc. that things would turn in the right direction. Was I ever proven right…for once. LOL Love this team , they got a little sloppy towards the end but…They will finish STRONG !!! Playoffs will suprise us all !!
    GO
    HABS
    GO

    ~~jinX2theLoaffs~~ There fans are awfully rusty…been a while since I seen a laffs hat worn in public…seen 2 yesterday LMAO :)

  54. jols101 says:

    Congrats to Markov. He has been painful to watch some nights because his bum knee just doesn’t want to work sometimes and unfortunately he isn’t the stud he once was. Still a beast on the PP and even at half speed still one of the smartest Dmen in the League.

  55. Ian Cobb says:

    Goals Against..120, We are now in 15th place. Last week 100 goals against, for 5th place. This is out of a 30 team league.

    We were around 4th place for many weeks until we won the play off spot, and we started to fall apart defensively against teams that wanted the win more than we did. It is a team stat about desire folks!

    • habstrinifan says:

      Big fall! What was the differential? Probably bigger still. I would like to see the differential come-up with more with the ledger for goals-for being emphasized. I fear if they dwell too much on ‘prevention’ they would play ‘Gorges game’ too much which is as self-defeating as a JM stratagem.

      • Ian Cobb says:

        Goal Differential +19. We are still in 4th place out of 30 teams.

        Last week we were +28, for 3rd place.
        And the week before that we were +29 for 3rd place.

        Not to shabby folks.

        • habstrinifan says:

          Thanks Ian. I still hope we don’t go the “JM bar the door’ route to correct our goals against by laying back defensively. For one thing we dont have the personnel and secondly MT dont know JM like JM knows JM… so he better not try it.

  56. Thomas Le Fan says:

    I’ve decided not to answer the poll question because it’s not the right question. Am I being asked if the success of the Habs in the playoffs is solely on Price’s shoulders? I won’t let the entire team off the hook like that. If I was asked if I believed that Carey Price was capable of winning if the team in front of him regains its form, as well, I might have a response. While goaltending is essential, the last time I looked this is still a team sport and this entire team is struggling.

    There is no crying in baseball, “i” in team or “chuck” in Galchenyuk.

  57. habstrinifan says:

    My first reaction… OH Gawd.. not another pre-gae ceremony. Luckily we are away!

    I am not worthy to be a HABS fan sometimes!

  58. I’m still in complete and utter shock at how the Fans have turned. You think you have fans here figured out and then boom! Some fans I do understand, they hate Price we get that. You can pick them out pretty easily. You can go into any topic over this slump and pick out the fans who are in rage over Carey Price playing poorly. You can also go into every topic where the Canadiens are winning and you won’t see a bit of praise for Carey Price from these exact fans and you know what, that’s fine. You continue to hate while he plays for the Canadiens and the game we all love, you continue to type away, wearing out that precious key board, clickity click click click, because Carey isn’t going anywhere right now. He’ll be in net tomorrow, and then next day and the next day after that.

    Carey’s not have a great season, and I’m fine with that and if doesn’t stop every single puck in the playoffs I accept that fans will hate him, and that’s fine too. Most of us know what he is capable of, but what I’m not fine with are fans that turn on a team over a slump.

    A slump that started the night they clinched. They stopped playing hard, they stopped covering their assignments. No more battling. No more puck support. No more PK rushes, or big hits. Why is that? Most of us who ever played competitive hockey know what’s going on right now, and I hope that’s just it. Because that’s what it looks like to me.
    I could be wrong and hey I’m fine with that too. These guys were dead last last year.

    Not even two weeks ago people were talking about the core of the Habs, Price, PK, Max, Eller, Gallagher, and Galchenyuk being the center pieces for something great to come. Now some of these same people are ready to throw them away.

    Adversity? The team and management will work through this, but the fans, the fans who love this team as if it were their own flesh and blood what do they do? JUMP!

    It’s a good thing that only a select few are jumping, you guys are in the minority and while we all still support them as they get through this horrible stretch of hockey, you guys (jumpers) have a nice fall and when they win and you guys come back, we’ll cheer along with you, but I’ll always look at you differently.

    I choose to fix a broken leg, not jump on it. I choose to finish a race, not quit. I choose to help my neighbor, not laugh at him. I choose to help a friend in need, not punch him in the stomach.

    You choose to quit and hey, the world is full of them, and that’s fine too, but that’s not me.

    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    http://www.Sholi2000.com
    Custom Sports Figures

    • Mustang says:

      It is very easy to jump on and off the band wagon. I am disappointed in how the Habs are playing right now but we have to look at the incredible improvement they have made this year compared to the previous season. We also have to look at the strong core the team has and how that is going to develop in the next year or two.

      There is no doubt in my mind that there is something wrong with Price, maybe physical, maybe mental, maybe something else. Anyone who calls for him to be traded (someone was even suggesting that he be bought out yesterday) because he has had a few bad games is not looking at the big picture. I think that for whatever reason Price’s positional play has simply not been very good lately. Price has always been very good in being in the right place at the right time but now that doesn’t seem to be the case. I hope that will change before the playoffs begin.

      Win or lose, my team is the Montreal Canadiens.

      • Kooch7800 says:

        Price is a good goalie but isn’t playing well lately. I hope he isn’t injured cause this team won’t go far without him.

        The part that doesn’t make sense is if he is injured why not let Budaj play a few more games and rest price. it isn’t like Budaj is that bad. He can hold his own. MT usually also exercises on the side of caution when it comes to injuries so it makes me a little skeptical that Price is injured. I just think he and the entire team is struggling right now.

        “Keep your stick on the Ice”

        • wjc says:

          Simple, In order for ‘Price’ to get his game back he has to play, not watch. He will get his game back, through some technique adjusments, the defensive adjustments, and old fashion confidence.

          To play is to know, to never play but alway observe is to be ‘clueless’

          To play at a high level, where every part of your game is dissected and remain quiet, (in other words except blame where it could be laid at the feet of a missed asssignment, or a bad defensive play) takes real courage and maturity.

          All goals in the NHL are the goalies fault….raise your hand if you believe that.

          You can tell when a break down has occurred, in the offensive zone, neutral zone, defensive zone. Players feel bad when they screw up and the coach lets them know. The goalie takes all the blame from fans that think they know all. He quietly does not embarrass certain players as they know he will not get every shot he should.

          It is a truly tiem game (my tiem has an I in it) because a bunch of individuals make up a team and the individuals look out for each other and bite the bullet when necessary.

          Price could say if so and so had of picked up the damn trailer he wouldn’t have all day to fire that wrister that I wasn’t ready for because the puck was headed out of the zone.

          But that would kill the team and the players would hate him.

          To understand the game sometime take slow motion, a luxury the players do not have, they have to act on instinct…and then whoops!

          wjc

    • 2shoes says:

      Great post Shane,Well said!!

    • habzfan2003 says:

      +1000 Shane!

  59. Kooch7800 says:

    Good for Markov. i think he silenced a lot of critics this year. He is a heck of a d man. It is really a shame that he missed the last two seasons.

    I hope MT does let him have some rest before the playoffs cause we really need him to play well

    “Keep your stick on the Ice”

  60. commandant says:

    #13 on the draft board is the son of a former Maple Leaf.

    http://lastwordonsports.com/2013/04/22/max-domi-2013-nhl-draft-player-profile-13/

    Go Habs Go!
    Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.
    http://lastwordonsports.com/

    • Un Canadien errant says:

      I can’t get over my personal prejudice on this one. I don’t want to see this young man in bleu, blanc et rouge, and it’s nothing against him, it’s the bloodline. I’ve seen quite enough of his father in my lifetime, don’t need to see him a hundred times a year on RDS. I’m so glad the viewer revolt aborted his TSN career before it got off the ground.

    • jols101 says:

      Domi Junior is a good little hockey player but I am glad he will be gone before the Habs draft. Three 5’8 forwards is 2 too many, we definitely don’t need a 4th.

  61. knob says:

    Is it possible to receive a temporary ban from this site and if so, how do you go about finding the reason why?

  62. Can anyone explain why the Canadiens have spiralled so quickly out of control?

    1) Price
    2) Defensive softness
    3) Too small and tired D and Offense
    4) Emelin being hurt
    5) Bench virus that has scrambled the brains of our D
    6) Markov overworked and over-tired
    7) Gorges over-valued, not blocking pucks
    8) DD playing the way he can, vs. the way he did last year
    9) No fore-check
    10) Their depends are leaking

    Promote the Youth, Support From The Veterans and Remember the Heritage!

    • commandant says:

      A whole lot of factors… not just one.

      No excuses though, fix it and get back to winning.

      Go Habs Go!
      Your 2013 NHL Draft Headquarters, Now Open.
      http://lastwordonsports.com/

    • knob says:

      1) he has struggled but shooters are getting really good looks at the net.
      2) loss of Emelin hurts but forechecking teams have kind of owned us. D does not play well against the dump and crash
      3) Big guys not going to the dirty areas; small guys are just that, small; I don’t think they are tired
      4) see #2
      5) doubt it
      6) yes
      7) not at all, just struggling. I think he is trying to do too myuch
      8) DD – my comment will be negatively biased here so I won’t comment
      9) I don’t think we are a forechecking team. We steal the puck and transition the other way. Transition game allows for easier entry. Maybe we are starting off with the puck too much (I can’t believe I just said that)
      10) PJ Stock doesn’t play for the Habs anymore
      11) teams have figured out our PP. Time to change it up

      • Got a giggle on the Stock comment… agree with you knob and Commandant. Just so frustrating to see such a complete collapse over an extended period as opposed to a couple of games. Now, five out of last 7 and counting… Ugh! Even Florida would look at us like a carcass to be eaten without any concern

        Promote the Youth, Support From The Veterans and Remember the Heritage!

  63. knob says:

    good for Markov. Nice to see him back in the line up.

  64. OH, cool! First comment on very depressed HIO commentariat thread… any idea how to fix this disastrous slump? I’m at a loss for words…

    Promote the Youth, Support From The Veterans and Remember the Heritage!

    • Skeptical says:

      I don’t know if these lines would fix this disastrous slump but it wouldn’t hurt to try.

      Pacioretty Plekanec Ryder
      Galchenyuk Eller Gallagher
      Bourque Desharnais Gionta
      Moen Halpern Prust

      • Why not put Prust in with the Rookies? His size, toughness have helped them in the past? Why leave him on the cleanup line?

        Promote the Youth, Support From The Veterans and Remember the Heritage!

        • Skeptical says:

          oldschool: I’m not sure these lines can get the job done but. it’s the best I could come up with. I think MT has tried everything and is running out of options.

          To be honest. I’m not sure they can win more than one round of the playoffs. They’re a long ways off from the big dance. When they’re playing good hockey. They’re a nice team to watch. Just not a cup team yet.

          • Agreed, All throughout the season, I was not confident that they could finish off any team with impunity (save for Florida). Like to see them as a powerful, relentless force, but you’re right, they’re not there yet. Was a fun season until last week, so I’ll be happy with that. Shame it ends in such a slump.

            Promote the Youth, Support From The Veterans and Remember the Heritage!

  65. Sportfan says:

    WOOH! GO Marki Win it! You deserve it!

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  66. Big whoops on main page as it says Markov wins trophy!

    Promote the Youth, Support From The Veterans and Remember the Heritage!


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