Mighty Blue Jackets visit the Bell Centre

Leblanc
It won’t be official until morning skate, but Louis Leblanc likely will make his Bell Centre debut against Columbus Tuesday night. And Max Pacioretty returns to the Canadiens lineup.

• LL’s big night

Max-Pac is back

Red Fisher on the Markov mess; François Gagnon’s take

Canadiens happy with realignment

And vote Price for the All-Star game:

217 Comments

  1. Hab-Q says:

    habs already lost to Isles and Ducks who are 2 of the bottom 4 in the NHL.

    If they lose to the 29th place CBJ’s tonight then this team is officially hopeless.

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

    ~Rodney Dangerfield

  2. nunacanadien says:

    It is an embarrassment when the Habs legacy has an owner who is out to lunch. Geoff Molson should have stuck with what he knows best, which is not how to manage a hockey team. Geoff Molson who like Gilete before him buys hockey players on the cheap, a typical 6 foot tall 200 pounder is just that Geoff and Bob wants to continue the Bob Gainey EXPERIMENT TO SEE IF SMALL PLAYERS CAN WIN YOU A STANLEY CUP!….yes come to Geoff Molson’s Hockey Extravaganza and Hockey Emporium for used and washed up veterans and rookies who injure their acls…..

    • chilli says:

      Really the dumbest post i have ever read. Do you even know how the business of hockey works?

      Tre

    • 42 says:

      After lurking on this site for almost two years now, I simply had to make an account when I read your post. I just HAD to tell you how absolutely retarded your post sounds. It is almost entirely devoid of any sound logic, so much so that I am tempted to believe that you live in an alternate reality. Stick to drinking Brawndo.

      Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known. ~ Carl Sagan

  3. Cardiac says:

    So the Atlanta franchise traded us a couple of duds for Maxwell, put him on waivers after 4 games this season, only to claim him back a month later? Poor bastard…

    In my books he will always be the guy we selected in 2006 right before Boston drafted Lucic. Wow, make you wonder…

    “There’s genius everywhere, but until they turn pro, it’s like popcorn in the pan. Some pop… some don’t.”
    - Jerry Maguire

  4. Outeast says:

    I have a suggestion for the League for naming the new conferences. See what you think:

    North and South
    Battle of the Bulge
    Men in the Middle
    Western Frontier

    Smile, it does you and others good!

    What has been will be again, there is nothing new under the sun.

    What has been will be again, there is nothing new under the sun.

  5. habsfanforever7631 says:

    Go Habs!!!
    Just hope they don’t play down to the BJ’s.
    I don’t think they will because They’re coming in to the Bell Center after a few games and the atmosphere will be good.
    Don’t expect much from LL just a good and hard game but maybe if someone elce is having a not that good game JM mite move him down to the forth and LL to another line.
    Maybe DD Pacioretty Cole will play together again? (I hope)

    Go Habs Go

  6. habs001 says:

    a fourth line of gomez,moen and white might work?

  7. FLAHABFAN says:

    I am stoked about this new alignment! I live an hour and a half away from both the Lightning and the Panthers. I will now get to see 6 games a year!

  8. HabinBurlington says:

    Ben Maxwell claimed off waivers by Wpg! Wasn’t he there at the start of the season? This guy is getting some serious frequent flyer miles.

  9. habs001 says:

    Just wondering when a player has surgery and management says 3-5 weeks does that mean in the lineup or after this time frame he is ready to practice?…..i would think you still have to add on practice and conditioning for at least another 2 weeks..

  10. CanadienBoy says:

    So we stuck with Gauthier according to Molson press release damm it and out off the blue came across a very good article about Burky being a EMBARRASSMENT in Toronto by Steve Simmons on Canoe.ca check it out war is brewing between Burke and the news mans

  11. Neutral says:

    wonder if we could package a deal with Gomez to Calgary for Rene Bourque – He would add the offence this team needs to compete for the rest of the season – plus add more leadership as a veteran presence on and off the ice – Oh I forgot I’m one of the dumb posters – forget about it…..

  12. SPATS says:

    I just read Hickey’s column on MaxPac on faceoff.com (where you can go when u use up your free 20 at the gazette) There was a lengthy report from the MASH unit, but oddly, no mention of Scott Gomez. Any buddy have some info?

    OOH AAH – HABS ON THE WARPATH!

  13. Marcusman says:

    I think we all need to chill and get back having fun with this team. It’s early and we’re definitely in the hunt. had we won our games against Calgary,Florida, Edmonton ,Islanders and the ducks…we’d be in first place.

    The goal tending is there, the defense is there (say what you want about lack of experience and size) we simply need to start filling the net at the other end. We have several players that have 20-25 goals a year written all of them. we simply need to have them produce.

    Let’s go on a run…starting tonight…4-0 habs

  14. LafleurFan says:

    What did we give the Islanders last year to get Wizniewski again?

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  15. vegas says:

    Any news on White and Gomez?
    Not in a rush to see Gomez back but if we are to pay him might as well have him center the 4th line and handle some penalty kill minutes

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      History tends to indicate that it doesn’t work that way. He’s used to disrupt the flow on the higher lines.

    • shiram says:

      White is still rehabbing after his surgery for his sports hernia, afaik.
      No eta either.

      Markov for 2012

    • Steeltown Hab says:

      Gomez is bruutal defensively, if we have to use him it should be on the wing in Darche’s spot if anything, limit his defensive responsibilities by putting him on the wing and he might even be able to use his speed to his advantage. Either way he’s a lost cause at this pt and you know JM is just itching to get him into the top 6 n pp

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Yesterday in the Globe and Mail, Bill Beacon had an article on the Habs and mentioned White is weeks away and skating. But have not read anything else as positive as that anywhere.

  16. C_exacte says:

    Since when does 4 weeks = the end of February?? I’m not a mathematician but 4 weeks from now = Dec. 31st MTL vs FLA. Added bonus, Markov can just take a cab from Dr. Andrews office to the rink.

    • Cardiac says:

      Everyone, even his coach, said he would be ready to go last week. Why would we believe this 4-6 week timeframe will really be 4-6 weeks?

      “There’s genius everywhere, but until they turn pro, it’s like popcorn in the pan. Some pop… some don’t.”
      - Jerry Maguire

      • TomNickle says:

        Because a knee scope is an in and out procedure and requires very little recovery time. 4 weeks is a highly conservative timeframe for return from that procedure.

        • Habsolutely says:

          If they are doing a scope on the knee it’s because he has pain and discomfort. the question is what they will find with the scope, which may mean more surgery.

          • G-Man says:

            They announced 4 to 6 weeks AFTER his surgery.

          • Habsolutely says:

            I’ll believe Markov is back when I see him on the ice playing defense for the Montreal Canadiens. Till then all this 3 week, 4 week crap is just a bunch of nonsense.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        There is no reason for PG to lie about thisspecific recovery. They have the injury/problem very isolated now. If PG was to lie about this recovery it would be him ringing his own death bell. He has enough committed in Markov that he owes it to the franchise not to lie.

        They never lied before either, they did not think scar tissues was going to arise and create the swelling which was occurring.

        • Mattyleg says:

          I like the image of ‘ringing one’s own death bell’.
          Very macabre!
          “What did you do today, Matty?”
          “Lessee.. picked up some groceries, walked the dog, rang my own death bell for a while, chatted with Linda, and did the ironing.”

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

  17. Timo says:

    Here’s your answer re Molson, Ian. He seems to be satisfied with the team’s performance. Mediocrity all the way.

    http://www.rds.ca/canadien/chroniques/331305.html

    • Cardiac says:

      It depends on your definition of “team.” Does “team” include coaching staff and management or is it limited to the actual guys on the ice?

      “There’s genius everywhere, but until they turn pro, it’s like popcorn in the pan. Some pop… some don’t.”
      - Jerry Maguire

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      I think you need to give the guy a minute or two. He’s inherited a lot of contracts, doncha know.

    • canadiens26 says:

      Wow, am I glad the guy at the helm is satisfied with a sub-.500 hockey club.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      Timo–I don’t think they are satisfied, but they do not jump like you and I hope they would. They have earned their stripes in business by making moves that are long term and correct. Or I would have their money in my account.
      Enjoy the game tonight, and hope they do not play down to the competition as they did against the Islanders and the Ducks.

    • G-Man says:

      Molson said that the team is performing well considering the circumstances. Those circumstances were the bad start and all the injuries. He said he has the management team in place to win.

      There, now you can all go crazy about our Pollyana owner. ;)

      • Timo says:

        Considering the circumstances of… having brain-dead management and coach? Yeah, I can see that.

      • Bullsmith says:

        Wouldn’t having a mediocre lineup that lacks size, grit and a PP be part of the team’s “circumstances.” Isn’t a GM with a top-level budget expected to ice a team that can compete. Even under adverse “circumstances.” I mean Markov hasn’t really played in two years. Spacek is 37. Campoli was unsigned all summer. White is a fourth liner. Can they really claim that they counted on these players to make the Habs a winner?

      • nunacanadien says:

        And we thought in the old days Harold Ballard was bad. Man, who would have thought in an instand Geoff Molson could outstrip the Laffs incompetent management with just a few words about Gomez?

    • bajd says:

      That’s too kind. The team has finished between 6th and 11th every year for 16yrs straight save for one season. The organization is the dictionary definition of average. To me that’s a feat in itself. It’s easy to suck and obviously difficult to succeed but how does any organization on this planet ensure that for every good move, an equally bad move is made to offset it for year after year

  18. Richrebellion says:

    I don’t get why the media is freaking out over Markov, does it hurt that he once again needed surgery yes! But it isn’t the end of the world and blaming PG makes even less sense. Can PG predict the future? We’re only 27 games into the season there is plenty of time for Markov to come back and the fact that the organization is making sure he is completely healthy is the smartest thing to do. Markov was never the fastest or most agile player, he ran the best PP in the league for 2 years by using his vision and his hockey sense and I don’t think a knee injury effected those! If you look around the league the top players can play into their 40′s now even though they don’t have the jump in their step they once had! Guys like Lidstrom, Selanne and Jagr use their high hockey IQ and vision to make smart plays. Markov is the same type of player and even though he may not be as quick he can still make those great passes on the pp that create great chances.

    I am willing to predict that by the end of the season all the habs media will be praising Markov and loving the fact that we signed him at 5.75! Top d in today’s NHL are getting in the 7.5 million dollar range, we can potentially have one of the best for 2 million less! Its called patience and its a virtue that the Montreal Media clearly doesn’t have!

    • Outeast says:

      Markov will be fine. The fact we’ve done as well as we have without him is awesome. Have some of you forgotten we have very little experience on the blueline? Mosts teams would fold in our current situation. It’s not fun with all the injuries and inexperience and facing potentially missing the playoffs but the future looks good indeed.

      I have a suggestion for the League for naming the new conferences. See what you think:

      North and South
      Battle of the Bulge
      Men in the Middle
      Western Frontier

      Smile, it does you and others good!

      What has been will be again, there is nothing new under the sun.

  19. Ian Cobb says:

    After reading Robert Rice yesterday, about our Future kids in our farm system, It sure appears that our scouting and drafting department is our best department in the organization. The only thing is that we are on hold a few more years before we can have a parade.

    In a couple of years our older players will be gone and the kids that have been brought up the past two years will be our core players on the roster. Over the next two or three years these young draft picks of ours on the farm will becoming available as well.

    The future does look bright because of the long term planning the past few years, even with a few wrong turns.

    Sadly our patience are running thin, especially after the tease run two years ago.

    It sure is tough waiting though.

  20. Neutral says:

    I don’t understand how some on this site keep B’s themselves on Markov’s return – Markov smart like fox – fooled management just like George Laroque – they do a lot of laughing at the Bank though…..

  21. HabinBurlington says:

    Will the NHL ever expand or move a franchise into the GTA? Yes, maybe.

    I would have never said yes to this question 4 or more years ago, but there are some key factors which present an opportunity for the NHL to capitalize on the largest hockey market in North America.

    First, Buffalo Sabres now have a true deep pocketed owner. This owner is not only wealthy beyond belief but he is also a huge hockey fan and a business man. Also, the Markham ON option would not hurt the current flood of Southern Ontario fans who cross the border to attend Sabres games. The drive from West of Toronto to Markham is not an option for a fan to do on any regular basis. This is dramatically different from having a team in Hamilton, which would/could have a huge impact on gate revenue to the Sabres as it relates to Canadians crossing the border.

    Second, Ownership of Maple Leafs. The Teachers Pension fund is all about making money. They recently did an experiment to see what they could sell the entire MLSE operations for and discovered it could not be sold for the price then needed to justify losing the annual profits they derive from this corporation. The market of Toronto as it relates to the Leafs is almost saturated, boxes are essentially sold out, season tickets are sold out, and they are already charging the highest ticket prices in the league. So how do you increase the revenue? By granting Bettman permission to move another team into the marketplace (but not into your front yard, downtown T.O.) you could receive some kind of 1 time payment in excess of 200million dollars as a relocation fee. Buffalo may or may not qualify for this as the distance from Markham to Buffalo I believe would be greater than the current imaginary monopoly line which the NHL uses.

    Third, MLSE is investigating the possibility of starting an entire TV network similar to that of New York and the Yes network. Once this is established the extra revenue stream may prove enough that having “competition” in the area won’t be as costly, as they won’t be competing with this other team when trying to have Bell or Rogers purchase their TV rights.

    Not saying it is going to happen, but these are factors that were not present in years past. Not to mention, one day somebody will get the chance to challenge the current monopoly in court and the NHL will not want that, as they will lose.

    • TomNickle says:

      There are some flaws in your analysis in my opinion.

      Terry Pegula may be a deep pocketed owner, but that doesn’t mean that the Sabres would remain successful with another team in their area. Anyone who lives or has been to Niagra, Welland, Hamilton and surrounding areas knows that the Buffalo Sabres are a saving grace for hockey fans who don’t want to support the Leafs. Another team in the near area doesn’t just cut into ticket sales, it cuts into merchandise, media market exposure, network coverage and community involvement. All of which are a big part of the foundation that the Sabres are built on.

      Markham. No way in hell. Let’s just leave it at Markham not being a real hockey market and the travel involved to get to and from games in that general area would be as much of a pain as the ACC would. And in addition, you need an owner willing to make an unbelievable baloon payment to the Leafs which you mentioned. Essentially negating any profit for the first five years of existence minimum.

      • avatar_58 says:

        I’ve never met someone in this city who cheers for the sabres (hamilton). Habs and Leafs, that’s it

        • TomNickle says:

          That must mean that the Sabres don’t have a following in Hamilton.

          • avatar_58 says:

            Do you live here? It’s all leafs jerseys/shirts/hats with the habs being the 2nd most loved. No one gives a flying man snake about the sabres.

          • TomNickle says:

            I have a lot of friends and family in that area so I visit quite a bit. And I know a lot of people who follow the Sabres religiously in that area. A lot of businesses that openly follow the Sabres.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          I know a few _58, but most of the Sabres fans I know live in the actual Niagara region. Hamilton is, I agree a Leaf/Habs town first/second with Sabres being a distant 3rd.

          While the Bulldogs have not been an enormous hit attendance wise, it has helped rejuvenate some Hab fans in the area.

          • avatar_58 says:

            The bulldogs need a better schedule and PR team. No one has any clue when the games are taking place and even when we do, if you are a habs fan you need to choose between the habs and the dogs….guess which wins?

            The outdoor game should be shouted from every rooftop, commercials, CHCH attention, etc. Instead everyone I tell about it has no clue. Not the slightest idea. Such a waste.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Tom I don’t say these things like “I know” it will happen. My point quite simply is there are more factors now than previous years which point to the possiblity being greater that it happens.

        Evenutally a gate driven league has to recognize that the largest group of people in North America who watch and love hockey can support more than 1 team. It is that simple.

        • TomNickle says:

          I’m not saying you did. My points are simple. A wealthy owner might ease the pain of losing a large portion of a team’s fanbase, but it doesn’t stop the bleeding.

          As for Markham, I can’t see it. Mainly because of the Sabres and Leafs, but also because there has been a steadily growing disconnect between that community and hockey for quite a while now.

          The Leafs already have a network by the way.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Yes they do have Leafs TV which has been a complete and utter failure along with Raptors TV. That is why they are looking into forming a larger conglomerate TV package including the huge popularity of the Toronto FC soccer team.

            I am no fan of the Leafs, but I think something will happen. I know how Teachers Operate very well, and have a few ties pretty high up. If they see a way to get extra money they will do it. Initially I thought Markham was a whacked out idea, but if indeed this guy finds a way to hoodwink local gov’t into helping him build a new arena it will be interesting.

            Appreciate the discussion, always enjoy reading your opinions.

          • TomNickle says:

            Leafs TV being a failure is the reason, in my opinion, why they won’t get that big tv package. They get a ton of television exposure through TSN, CBC and Rogers. Those networks won’t be willing to spend what they do now for broadcasting rights if the Leafs don’t make up a huge part of their broadcast schedule.

            The teachers seem to strike for every second season that the Leafs don’t make the playoffs. It stopped being a coincidence a long time ago. So I agree with you there. Funny thing is that if they truly are considering selling, they couldn’t be more ignorant. The team is poised to expand on its humongous revenue generation with a playoff appearance and are becoming more marketable by the game.

    • TommyB says:

      Good points. I think it is just a matter of “when” for another team in the GTA. I don’t think Hamilton is an option, though. When Hamilton first started chasing an NHL franchise, Copps Colliseum was a new building. That’s what, 20 years ago, or thereabouts now? Not to mention trying to negotiate around downtown Hamilton and finding parking. Markham will put shovel to the ground soon, and they have a large population base, and more importantly, plenty of corporate money to draw from. Filling seats and private boxes would be a piece of cake.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        The other point I failed to mention Tommy is who the guy behind the Markham arena is, he is head honcho with Bauer Canada. I suspect he has a few connections, and like the ownership group in Winnipeg, he won’t be spewing any promises and will be a loyal soldier to the NHL in hopes of getting a team.

        Phoenix has to be resolved this year, and it just so happens that the new Conferences based primarily in the East have room for another team.

        I don’t say these things like I know it will happen, but rather, chances are better now than before.

  22. Ian Cobb says:

    Great management wins championships.
    So we now have $13 million dollars per year, going to two players who have been MIA for two years, and we have to carry them for the next two years also. Does Geoff know!

    I suppose if we all keep drinking his beer, It”s a drop in the bucket.

    • SmartDog says:

      You know it’s a bad situation when even YOU start to growl. Good on ya Ian – you’ve been a ‘glass is half full’ guy as long as anyone, but you have to know when enough’s enough.

      The bottom line is this team – not matter how good it gets – can’t win consistently because is a bucket with a big hole in the bottom and Habs ownership and upper management keeps whistling Dixie.
      ————————————-
      Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

      • Ian Cobb says:

        Dog–Geoff has yet to put his stamp on the organization. This is still a Gillette stamped team. But I do expect the Molson boys to corporately change the heading of this franchise in the near future.

    • Bob_Sacamano says:

      Did you think five month ago it was a bad idea to sign Markov? We don´t have Gomez for two more years. I don´t believe PG and Molson are stupid enough to keep him. Gomez won´t be a Hab beyond the end of this season and at this point even Gomez himself has to know that.

      • Cardiac says:

        Let me be the first to say that is was a bad idea to sign Markov for as long as they did for as much as they did, no matter if it was ten, five, or three months ago.

        Furthermore, how confident are you that Gomez is gone by next summer? Is he trade-able? Do we put him on wavers? Is buying out his contract an option when you consider we have Subban, Price and AK46 to resign in the off-season with a new CBA around the corner?

        “There’s genius everywhere, but until they turn pro, it’s like popcorn in the pan. Some pop… some don’t.”
        - Jerry Maguire

      • Ian Cobb says:

        Bob–How would you make his contract go away my friend. No one else is going to pay it but us.

        • Bob_Sacamano says:

          Really Sherlock? There are two realistic options: Hamilton/Europe or a buyout. There´s no way we carry a fourth liner who makes nearly as much money as Crosby through another season or even two. Even the optimistic ones now have to admit that he´s done.

        • ed lopaz says:

          you send Gomez to Hamilton and although he keeps getting paid, the Habs can use the 7 million to make their lineup much stronger, Ian.

          Rangers did this and their team is much stronger because of it.

          • Ian Cobb says:

            I know it changes the cap for our roster, but we still have to pay his contract, it does not go away, and no one is going to pay the whole thing for two more years but us. Are they!

          • ed lopaz says:

            you are right Ian.

            Molson still has to pay the whole 7 million+ even if he goes to Hamilton.

            But I don’t care how Molson spends his money in hamilton.

            As long we get 64 million worth of salaries in Montreal for the Habs.

            Getting the maximum out of our 64 million, thats what counts!

          • Ian Cobb says:

            True Dat —ED

    • Mattyleg says:

      Gomez and…? Markov?
      The reason he’s not playing, IC, is that he’s getting well so that he can actually play for the rest of his contract.

      Funny thing is, I know NOBODY who drinks Molson here in Montreal. None of my friends, my extended family, my work-mates.. nodbody. Not even the bars that I go to (and I go to a lot) serve Molson.

      Dunno who drinks it, or where and when, but either way, I feel sorry for ‘em… but probably not as sorry as they feel for themselves the day after drinking Molson!

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

  23. HabinBurlington says:

    Will the Wiz get any kind of special greeting from the fans? Cheer or Jeer.

  24. Rudy says:

    Not happy about realignment. It means Habs are in DC only once a season (was twice so not that much of a difference, but still) :(

  25. Jim Edson says:

    Which Habs will show up tonight?

    The hard working team which puts in a decent effort or the team which mirrors its GM(- the Ghost) when playing bottom feeders!

    ———————————————————————-
    …..My empire is crumbling, my international sponsors are deserting me, my authority is questioned, I am held in contempt wherever I go.

    Who am I: Barak Obama or Gary Bettman.

    • shiram says:

      They might slack a bit since they are home, but being home will help them on the faceoffs.
      Return of Patches too, so a close one, habs win it 3-2.

      Markov for 2012

  26. Right on Kakay! This CH team does more to squash new talent like PK than develop it. Yes, he makes mistakes, but that video of him doing the I told you so with Price and the bump is great reel. He was pissing of the Flyers, Boston, everyone who got in his way. That is the attitude this team needs. Not a pale yellow that JM loves. What a shame if he should be lost after getting fed up with the JM system. Even Pouliot is scoring in Boston. Doesn’t that say something about our team. Decent talent that can’t grow and excel because they are being strangled as opposed to allowed to shoot, hit and skate. I’m so sick of this mediocrity and resting on the teams Stanley Cups from the 50′s and 60′s and 70′s. Who cares at this point. Anyone who saw those games will be too old to remember in 20 years which is at least how long we will be waiting for another Cup to come to Montreal. We want size. We want the shooters like our best addition Cole to swing away. Let PK skate, fist pump and check. Let’s have some entertainment value and win some games not play under 500 .

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

    • G-Man says:

      If you don’t care at this point, why do you ramble on so?

    • kakey says:

      It was not only JM’s system of simplifying things that cripples his play (notice how he no longer goes coast to coast nor gets deep enough to score those goals), but the whole NHL old guard who got on his case (Cherry and Mike Richard’s “something will happen to him”, Darren Pang’s Freudian slip “The White Way”) during his display of brilliance. It got into his head so now he may be kind of jaded and goes “just shut up and do as I’m told”. For some reason he also embellishes his opponents’ infraction more than before.

      • G-Man says:

        The days of rushing Dmen are over. A passed puck moves faster than all the forwards waiting at the other team’s blue line while a Dman lugs it up ice.
        Join in on the rush? Sure. But not if it costs goals at your end of the rink.
        He has to stop embellishing or he won’t get the calls. Otherwise, for a 2nd year Dman- PK is doing just fine.

        • ed lopaz says:

          in fact the trend favors offensive defencman who carry the puck more, create open ice time and space for themselves, and yes,
          rush the puck or join the rush.

          every team is favoring these kinds of defencemen since the rule changes stopped the clutching and grabbing.

          MOST of the great young defencemen in the league are skating much more with the puck than Martin allows Subban to do.

          guys like Karlsson, Letang, Keith, are all skating miles with the puck.

          coast to coast?? no of course not.

          (Subban’s ability to go coast to coast is a remarkable and unique talent, but not practical unless the other team is caught in a bad change)

          But Martin goes much further in curbing Subban’s skating.

          Whatever – I am not worried.

          Martin is on borrowed time.

          Martin will be gone LONG BEFORE Subban is gone.

          And when that day comes, at last, we will all rejoice!!

    • habsguy says:

      Benny has (I think) 5 points !!!!!!

  27. C_exacte says:

    It’s the epic battle of Arniel vs Martin!! Get out the popcorn, kick back & enjoy the benching of star players.

  28. shiram says:

    New divisions really seem set to welcome in 2 new teams, or remove 2 teams. Adding teams seems more likely to me, and so as the Habs division is one with only 7 teams, well that opens the door for alot of expansion talk.

    Does Markham, Québec or Hamilton get a team?
    Interesting stuff for sure.

    Markov for 2012

    • Didn’t that Forbes article last week just say that half the teams in the league lost money last year?

      http://www.puckbandits.com

    • habsfan reduxit says:

      … of those three, seems to me QC is the most likely choice … although I’d prefer SteelTown.

      “Whenever you have the puck, and don’t know what to do with it, put it in the net.” – Toe Blake

      • Jim Edson says:

        QC, Markham, St Louis de Ha Ha none of which will get a team until they have an arena built for Buttman to visit.

        Talk about arenas, drawings of new arenas and dreams of new arenas don’t mean squat to the NHL especially when KC and LV already have buildings in place!

        ———————————————————————-
        …..My empire is crumbling, my international sponsors are deserting me, my authority is questioned, I am held in contempt wherever I go.

        Who am I: Barak Obama or Gary Bettman.

    • TomNickle says:

      Markham just won’t happen. Neither will Hamilton.

      Quebec City will get a team. It’s a matter of when, not if.

      Markham and Hamilton will never happen as long as the Leafs and Sabres are in the league. It just won’t.

      Kansas City and Quebec City are the only places being considered.

      • Marcusman says:

        I agree…

      • cuzzie says:

        They’ll try every US city before they come back to QC.

        Mr. Bad Example!

      • ed lopaz says:

        many people do not understand how much Quebec City has grown as a city since the Nordiques left.

        new money has come into the city.

        the passion for hockey has always been there, but the money has not.

        I have no doubt – zero – that Quebec will get a team.

        And that will be Patrick Roy’s team.

        Roy runs the hockey world in Quebec City – he is “king”.

        No NHL team will emerge without Roy getting his fair share of the action.

        and this will be a great wake up call for the Habs.

        they will face stiff competition from the new Quebec franchise, and the Habs will respond by becoming more aggressive and much more competitive.

        • Cardiac says:

          or turtle and die… :(

          “There’s genius everywhere, but until they turn pro, it’s like popcorn in the pan. Some pop… some don’t.”
          - Jerry Maguire

    • RGM says:

      If they do, Toronto will want one too.

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

  29. CanadienBoy says:

    So Molson speak to the media first GM now Molson on CKAC about Markov and how we stuck with Gauthier because he still happy with them ,time to switch beer brand

  30. Mattyleg says:

    These conferences sound pretty good, but the BEST thing of all:
    EVERY TEAM PLAYS EVERY GODDAMN TEAM TWICE!!

    I don’t think it’s too egocentric to say that I imagine Gary Bettman has been reading my posts. Finally, a President’s Trophy that will (almost) mean something!!

    As for names, I hope they go for naming them after great builders of the league, and not players.

    Having said that, I’m sure they’ll name the conferences after the highest-paying sponsor. Get ready for the Canadian Tire Conference, the partypoker.net Conference, the Kittensoft Conference, and the Wendy’s Conference.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • habMAINEac says:

      I wouldn’t mind conferences being named after products….just imagine Nokia versus Samsung, or Dell versus HP. I am sure the BMW conference will want faster skaters instead of Ford which will go with cheap and boring players. It would be a dream Having Pepsi and Coke duke it out.
      But seriously, how about bringing back the old names like Adams, Patrick. etc?

      Mediocre teams work at their best; teams seeking excellence strive to do better.

      • Mattyleg says:

        Kinda distressing that you wouldn’t mind that.
        I put it in as a joke.
        Corporate egotism is killing the world.
        Imagine what Coke would say to a team in their conference trading a good player to the Pepsi Conference. THAT’S when hockey dies.

        I would be behind the old names, but I don’t think they’d take them on, as they don’t represent what they used to.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • G-Man says:

      The Pollock Conference. Has a nice ring to it, eh?

  31. habsfan reduxit says:

    … sorry to change the subject; I’m just now getting around to reading about the new realignment (being retired means I get to sleep in nowadays), and I like it. Gary Bettman is still a jerk, short and making the rest of the world pay, but on this issue, he’s done a good thing.

    “Whenever you have the puck, and don’t know what to do with it, put it in the net.” – Toe Blake

  32. smiler2729 says:

    Betcha Jordin Tootoo shows up for his disciplinary hearing wearing a Boston Bruins jersey and gets no suspension for ramming Ryan Miller Saturday night….

    Just sayin’ is all.

    ___________________________________
    Jack Edwards sucks chowdah chunks

  33. kakey says:

    I want to see THIS Subban: http://youtu.be/Q9ZkQtei1eY

    Yes maybe his older teammates and coaches justifiably told him to calm down his antics, but when he was on, he was clutch. Many of those goals in this video were end of game deciders.

  34. smiler2729 says:

    Man, Pierre Gauthier is right up there with Irv Grundman and Reggie Houle as worst GM the Habs have ever had.

    Bring back Andre Savard.

    ___________________________________
    Jack Edwards sucks chowdah chunks

    • TomNickle says:

      Why’s that?

      • smiler2729 says:

        Why what? That PG’s a dud or bring back Savard?

        ___________________________________
        Jack Edwards sucks chowdah chunks

        • TomNickle says:

          Gauthier. What’s he done wrong?

          • smiler2729 says:

            How about not plugging the holes on this team?
            We still can’t win an important faceoff, the team is has no tougness, our defence is too green and gambling ($$$) on Markov is as stupid as Gainey getting Gomez…

            ___________________________________
            Jack Edwards sucks chowdah chunks

          • Mattyleg says:

            Uhhh, are we still in October?
            rinse, repeat, rinse, repeat, rinse, repeat…

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • TomNickle says:

            Gomez, Desharnais and Noki are all at 50% or better. I’m not saying I would have been opposed to an Eric Belanger, Scott Nichol or somebody else of that mold, but to blame the GM for this team being where it is in the standings because we “can’t win an important faceoff” is fallacy. No toughness? Moen? Emelin? White?

            Gambling on Markov was a risk. But so was trading Halak. If you’re pissy because Markov’s having his knee scoped, get over it. He needs to be 100% before he’s put back on the ice. And if taking their time leads to a couple years of good health, it’s a good gamble.

    • PureGuava says:

      I’ve been asking for his return for years. To have him step aside for Gainey was a nice thought, but ultimately the wrong move.
      Let me say that I was very excited when the organization brought Gainey in. I loved his acquisition of Alex Kovalev, and many of his early moves, and I do think that many of his picks were wonderful – Look at Ryan McDonagh!!…but something went horribly wrong. The youth on this team is developing nicely, but one can’t help wonder if they could be better without Gomez, Gio and Cammy. They just seem completely out of sync with the rest of the team, and its future direction.

      This is not a personal attack on any of the likable, dignified, and classy trio – any of whom when at the top of their game would be of value to any team in the league. Gionta is a good Captain, Gomer is a great teammate, and Cammy is a leader on a team with many. They just make too much, and contribute too little. This would be alright on most teams, but not on one with a full cupboard of kids that are being pushed to the back for them.

      The youth on this team is close to being ready, and these players are holding them back. It’s unfortunate.

  35. Chrisadiens says:

    Um, can anyone enlighten me? Casse? I need to learn french already……

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

  36. Looking forward to this game tonight on rds… hey, does anyone else do this when looking for the rds site?
    http://puckbandits.com/2011/12/06/httpwp-mep1ux3s-ay/

  37. HabinBurlington says:

    So Mr. Shanahan is happy to provide video evidence for justifying his punishment or lack thereof, however, don’t dare repeat anything said from the meeting. Interesting in his statement he doesn’t like to reveal what is said in these face to face or phone to phone discussion. Sounds nice and transparent to me.

    Max (says Brendan), you embarrassed the league last year when you faked that injury by skating into the stanchion. You must be suspended, never mind the fact your are dirty cheap shot artist like Matt Cooke. Now accept this and shut up to the media.

  38. JF says:

    No excuses tonight. We need to grab the two points. Twice we’ve faced teams at the bottom, and twice we’ve failed to show up or collapsed. A no-show tonight will raise serious questions about the team’s commitment.

    We now know that Markov won’t be back until at least the middle of January. This means the coaching staff have to find solutions to our two main problems now – the powerplay and lead-protection. We (the fans) and likely the players as well have been assuming that when Markov comes back, we’ll start scoring on the powerplay, winning those one-goal games, and moving up in the standings. We can’t wait any longer or it will be too late; we have to find a way to move up now.

    I’ve watched the §enators a few times and been impressed by their resilience. When they’re down a goal halfway through the third, more often than not they’ll get it and at least gain a point from the game. I believe the Habs have yet to pull off that feat; when we’re down in the third, we stay down. We’re not a good comeback team, and we have trouble protecting a lead.

    • LafleurFan says:

      luv your brilliancy in NOT writing resiliency!

      “May you live in interesting times.”

    • 24 Cups says:

      Jane – This game should be a big, fat fastball coming in at the plate belt high. As you said, no excuses. And no bs about parity and the notion that any team can win any game on any given night.

      - Columbus has the worst record in the NHL

      - they have the worst road record at 2-9-2

      - they only have one regulation win in their last ten games (although they are 4-4-2)

      - GF (25th), GA (29th), PP (25th) PK (29th). Let’s score some bloody goals tonight! TIme for the PP to shine.

      - they have an AHL goalie as their starter in net

      - Jeff Carter may not be able to start tonight

      - the Anaheim disaster should be fresh in the players’ minds and act as a form of motivation (or fear).

      • TomNickle says:

        Much more likely that their road victory and toughest game on that road trip that they won is fresh on their minds.

        I don’t know why we, and I do include myself, as Habs fans continue to mark games on the schedule as wins. As long as the Habs are playing with Weber and Diaz on defense and Cole and Pacioretty on the same line, this isn’t a well balanced team.

        • 24 Cups says:

          I’m just stating the obvious when it comes to playing Columbus, Tom. I know we still have to play the games but come on.

          With three players in sick bay, we don’t have much choice but to play Weber. He’s very up and down this year but we might as well find out if he can really play before we trade him off. Been there, done that. Diaz is a lightweight but he’s been getting some big time ice. Martin must see something there. Things may well change once Spacek returns. Campoli? Maybe if they feel he can help the PP. Otherwise, he’s got a shaky track record.

          Cammy/Pleks/Gionta doesn’t work for me. Yet Cole/MaxPac helps shelter DD, a player who does seem to have some chemsitry with MaxPac. Cammalleri was playing with DD/Cole so maybe Pacioretty will join Pleks/Gionta to give some more balance. You can only shuffle the deck so many times, especially when it only has about ten cards in it.

          • TomNickle says:

            I see where you’re coming from. But I chuckle a bit when I think of what Columbus’ mentality must be heading into this game. They’re thinking(or should be), that this game tonight is very winnable and would be a quick way to get out of a funk.

            Their problems, like ours, run deeper. But the point remains, they must be liking their chances tonight.

      • bleedhabs81 says:

        How about a hanging curve ball – low 70mph, and belt high instead of the fastball.

        A Heater, belt high, can still beat a hitter… especially if thrown over 95 mph.

  39. habs178 says:

    That is the BEST Price video EVER! HAHAHAHAHA
    Ah, way to start my morning! Love it!

    “How would you like a job where, every time you make a mistake, a big red light goes on and 18,000 people boo?”
    ~Jacques Plante

  40. kerrgte says:

    Think of Price’s superior strength in dishing off to the defence with such skill. Then think of him dishing to Markov. Their combined skills will enable a very, very fast transition game that will be at the top of the league. Then, watch the team’s win record improve.

    Come on Andrei, the team is looking forward to your speedy and successful recovery.

    • 24 Cups says:

      Tonight marks the 1/3 point of the season. Still no Markov. His next target date is the half way point, which is the Jan 12th game against Boston (which he will sit out for sure!). If Markov and the Habs want to be super cautious, then they could wait until after the All-Star game which takes us to Jan 31st which is the 50 game mark.

      I think for everyone’s sanity, we should give the Markov talk a rest. Pretend that he’s not even part of the equation. Focus on when Spacek and Campoli might come back and how they would fit in and improve the club.

      If and when Markov comes back, it will be like we just made a super trade and picked up a quality player to help us with the stretch drive.

      For me, the Markov lamenting stops right now.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Steve, do we have any idea when Spacek and Campoli come back, I can’t wait for these two guys! :)

      • Cardiac says:

        Are you serious? Ignoring the problem makes it go away, right? You do realize that he will be a fraction of the player he was 3-5 seasons ago. I don’t care how great his doctors are, there is no way his knee will ever be as good as new.

        “There’s genius everywhere, but until they turn pro, it’s like popcorn in the pan. Some pop… some don’t.”
        - Jerry Maguire

        • 24 Cups says:

          I think my point is that we keep losing our focus on the here and now by constantly wondering when Markov will come back. It’s counter productive. I don’t see it as a case of ignoring something we have no power over.

          I agree with you on your second point. I would have offered Markov a one year deal with the understanding that if he played 40 games without health issues he would get a two year extension. That’s perfectly legal under the present CBA. It’s also fair to both parties involved.

          I also agree that Markov is going to come back and face some major issues. There is going to be a ton of rust on his game which I also expect to be very tentative. I also worry about him being a target for certain teams, especially in light of the fact that the league hasn’t been able to end the head-hunter mentality that is so prevalent in today’s game.

  41. DearyLeary says:

    People needs to stop with this Max-Pac nonsense. Stupid nickname.

    Patches is the name of the people.

  42. SlovakHab says:

    Price is hilarious.

  43. HardHabits says:

    Wisniewski with 4 points tonight.

  44. JayBee says:

    BTW, Markov’s going to be gone 4-6 weeks now.

  45. HabinBurlington says:

    Twins seperated at birth?

  46. HabsfanoftheHabs says:

    There’s so many reasons the new format makes sense, it’s hardly worth getting into. Saying it’s stupid because the divisions are uneven is a weak argument as there are a few reasons for that. 2 conferences would NOT work, that’s why they’re changing it Kooch. Did you guys read several reports and analysis of the change or are you going off the TSN 30 second clip??

    The new plan is not perfect, but it accommodates as many teams as possible.

  47. TomNickle says:

    If players were suspended for slew footing, Tomas Plekanec wouldn’t get 10 regular season games in.

  48. Bob_Sacamano says:

    Plekanec was once suspended two games for a slew foot that certainly didn´t look worse.

  49. Bullsmith says:

    What bugs me is Shannahan was just on the Radio with Melnick talking about he just watches the incidents and makes the call. If he was on a desert island and had sufficient coverage, he’d make the same call.

    So where’s the Tootoo decision? Could it possibly be that because of how ridiculously he blew the Lucic hit on Miller, he’s painted himself into a corner on what should be (and likely will be) a simple ruling that the game misconduct was enough. Whatever the reason, the decision should’ve come down Monday. Delaying isn’t making the NHL’s unforgivable inconsistency in applying discipline any less obvious.

    I cannot for the life of me understand why a guy with a reputation like Shanny took a job that requires him to be the public apologist for a league riddled with cronyism and inconsistency. Well, he chose to be a stooge and he’s quickly becoming one in the public mind.

  50. chanchilla says:

    they seem to have taken it off the nhl website in hopes of people forgetting about it with the alignment news.

  51. The Dude says:

    Fine ….have Gomez replace Martin! I expect this from a guy who sells piss in a bottle…..

  52. shiram says:

    But I thought Ben Kenobi was out only hope?

    Markov for 2012

  53. Chuck says:

    Regardless of how you feel about Gomez, wishing physical harm to him isn’t cool, HH.

  54. Hab-Q says:

    I heard a story recently about Scotty Bowman when he heard a comment about a certain player being good in the room.

    “leave him in the room then because he’s no use on the ice”

    or words to that effect

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

    ~Rodney Dangerfield

  55. G-Man says:

    Well, um, um, Go Mez Go?
    Hope your tank requires repairs! So there! ;)

  56. Rad says:

    All hope is lost if ownership is behind Gomez to the extent that Molson appears to be when he calls Gomez “a great player.”

    The writing is on the wall right there boys: the Montreal Canadiens are owned by an imbecile. And since success always filters down from the top, the future will be a repeat of the last dozen years or so of mediocrity.

  57. Jim Edson says:

    G. Molson sounds like a used car salesman giving his spiel?

    Low mileage, never driven hard and very very economical!

    Top competitor??????

    ———————————————————————-
    …..My empire is crumbling, my international sponsors are deserting me, my authority is questioned, I am held in contempt wherever I go.

    Who am I: Barak Obama or Gary Bettman.


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