Multimedia from Thursday practice

Eller

Your Montreal Canadiens won’t be watching Sidney Crosby’s return Thursday evening.
They’ll be on a bus to Ottawa at 7 p.m.
Everyone was in a great mood after practice.

Randy Cunneyworth talked about the danger of  his team playing themselves out of a top draft pick with a late surge.

“It’s not in me and not in the group to lay down,” the coach said. “We’re competing. We continue to grow, regardless of circumstances.

“I’m still pushing for everyone to play their hearts out and play like a Montreal Canadien should play.”

Listen to the audio for some pointed remarks about Rene Bourque, who has two points in 22 games and is minus-17 in a Canadiens’ uniform.

“I have to push him,” Cunneyworth said of Bourque. “There’s another gear. He’s a tough customer who hasn’t gone there.”

Cunneyworth and Andrei Markov will talk about the defenceman’s participation in back-to-back games on the weekend. The coach will propose Markov play just one of the games (which seemed to be Cunneyworth’s preference) or reduced minutes in both.

P.K. Subban will play his usual yeoman ToI on Friday and Saturday. Cunneyworth said his young defenceman has been a different player since the All-Star break … and a better one.

“His focus is clearly better,” the coach said. “There’s not a lot of peripheral nonsense in his game. It’s more direct.”

Cunneyworth said Subban’s early-season efforts were unnecessarily complicated.

“It wasn’t goo enough for him to go by one guy. He’s have to go back and do it again.”

The showboating may have dazzled opponents and thrilled fans. But Cunneyworth said Subban’s exuberance could confuse the other four skaters trying to play with him.

The improvement, Cunneyworth added, “boils down to maturity.”

VIDEO leads off with Lars Eller not talking about his confrontation with Erik Karlsson Wednesday night:

Mike Blunden is ready to return:

The irrepressible P.K.:

Peter Budaj on giving DD shootout advice:

And last but not least:

334 Comments

  1. Athenian says:

    “Everyone was in a great mood after practice”.
    That’s nice. I wonder how Robinson, Richard, Beliveau, Dryden, Cournoyer, Shutt, Lafleur or Moore would have felt knowing their teams were about to be eliminated with quite a few games left to play.
    It’s sad what has happened to sport.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I think your describing diffetence of the modern day athlete as opposed to the old timers. It doesn’t normally bother me but I have to admit when I see a certain player named Gomez laughing on the bench during games it’s bothered me. I know if he and the club were playing well it wouldn’t bother me. The solution is for the team to play better then we won’t care what the attitude is.

  2. UnkleGary says:

    long time reader, kinda first time poster. I just want to share a great habs moment in my life.
    This summer I went backpacking through Nicaragua, and at a small random beach I heard a guy speaking French, clearly from Quebec. We started talking, and obviously the Habs came up almost immediately. After a good discussion, we grabbed our surf boards and headed into the swell. About half an hour later, the same guy caught the same wave as me, and we were riding in about ten feet away from each other. We caught eyes, and it seemed we had the same thing on our mind, because we both yelled GO HABS GO!! I really think that the Habs are way more than just a sports team, because apparently no matter where you are in the world you will find someone as passionate as you are.
    I want the Habs to lose every game for a good pick, until the puck drops. I dont know how any real fan can cheer against us while our players are giving it their all. When i don’t watch the game, i want them to lose. But when I watch, like against Vancouver, I can’t help but jump off my seat when they score.
    Anyhoo, sorry for ranting, Cole is a beast!

    CH-eers!

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Welcome to HIO Unk. Cool story. I’ve met Habs fans wheteever I go also. My wife, who is not a hockey fan, says we’re a cult. LOL. As far as your feeling about the current state of the team. I think most of us share that bipolar type feelings. Cheers right back at ya.

  3. H.Upmann says:

    Leafs are tanking cause of too much time spent at Jillies

  4. H.Upmann says:

    Leafs have no excuse for tanking, Brass Rail and Wandas have nothing on the mtl joints

  5. 24moreCups says:

    http://i44.tinypic.com/r0yu6u.jpg

    I remember seeing this gif of Alexei Emelin on a forum a little while ago and thought it was awesome, I don’t remember what game this from but I love it haha.

  6. Habitant in Surrey says:

    http://www.npr.org/blogs/therecord/2012/03/15/148693171/bruce-springsteen-on-the-meaning-of-music?ps=mh_frimg2

    …for those Habs’ Fans whom are music-lovers as well as hockey-lovers, this link is to NPR Radio’s video and coverage of Bruce Springsteen’s keynote speech at the South By Southwest Music Festival; speaking to young and other musicians on the history of contemporary music and his influences. Worth a listen no matter the kind of music You prefer.

    _________________________________________________________
    HIS’ Official Habs’ Fan Theme Song: Morrissey ‘There is a light that never goes out’ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gjObvIQtsLk&feature=related

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY
    http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=423049

  7. alfieturcotte says:

    FIRE GAUTHIER, FIRE GAUTHIER, FIRE GAUTHIER

    I just checked the stats and AK46 has 3G/3A in six games. As expected, with playing time, he is producing. And we got what for him……right, a 2nd rounder who might or might not make it into the NHL in 3-5 years. Ouch, how bad is our GM.

    FIRE GAUTHIER, FIRE GAUTHIER, FIRE GAUTHIER.

    • joeybarrie says:

      You should probably watch a few games before you comment crap like this. He played 20 min monday, zero points. Played 16 min, zero points. Played 15, 15 and 13 min… 2 points per game.
      By the way, before tonight, he averaged under 15 min a game in Nashville. Which is slightly less than he averaged in Montreal this season.
      But then again as soon as a player leaves Montreal we always say the same stupid thing. If he is truly a great player he should have gotten it done in Montreal.

  8. Bill says:

    @Captain aHab: “cute intellectual look” is pretty much synonymous with “freak in the sack”.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

    • ProHabs says:

      Let’s not forget Andi Petrillo guys, the one who hosts CBC GameDay with the goof PJ Stock. She seems like the girl next door, the opposite of Jody Vance.

      • Captain aHab says:

        Right now I’d say Natasha Staniskewski is the leader of the pack.

        —————-
        Avast, me proud beauty! Wanna know why my Roger is so Jolly?

    • Captain aHab says:

      To me, that look either says she is a freak or poses the interesting challenge of turning her into one. I’d volunteer for both assignments.

      Chantal Macchabé looks like te girl next door who would cook you a great meal then eat both her plate and yours. And RDS still throws Helene Pelletier out there as their tennis guru….her big claim to fame is being Canadian champion at a time when Canadian females were quite weak (heck they STILL are) and winning a first round doubles match against Navratilova. And they revere her like she’s Steffi Graf. They need to severely upgrade in the babe dept. Melanie Marois is kinda cute so there’s at least some hope.

      I don’t get Andi Petrillo. She annoys the heck out of me.

      —————-
      Avast, me proud beauty! Wanna know why my Roger is so Jolly?

    • Captain aHab says:

      Look at Kate Beirness…to me she’s got a little of that look too but I’m not convinced she’d be a freak. Had not realized she used to play basketball at a pretty high level until knee injuries did her in.

      —————-
      Avast, me proud beauty! Wanna know why my Roger is so Jolly?

  9. Captain aHab says:

    Stop talking about the Bruins, there’s a far better discussion to be had below about sports news babes.

    —————-
    Avast, me proud beauty! Wanna know why my Roger is so Jolly?

  10. HNS says:

    Booins have a lot in common with Greg Norman…..They’re always due for a EPIC choke.

    • ProHabs says:

      Is it too much to ask that the Bruins finish ninth and the Leafs tenth in the Eastern conference. Boston would just go nuts after the Red Sox collapse if the Bruins followed it with a callapse that took them out of a playoff spot.

      • boing007 says:

        Ask and you shall receive. If not, try Saint Joseph Oratory.
        Don’t forget your knee pads.
        Richard R

      • saskhabfan says:

        Buffalo is 8 points back of the bruins with the bruins having 2 games in hand.But they do play each other in the last game of the year.How great would it be if that game meant the sabres could make the playoffs and take the bruins out of it in the process.The bruins are only 1 point out of 7th and hence being labelled as a “bubble team”.

        • Mr_MacDougall says:

          Their last 4 games of the season, NYR, PTS, OTW, BUF.

          Love to see them blow it. Turco is awful, and hopefully Thomas keeps playing terrible.

  11. Cal says:

    RetroMikey will be upset. His Gooins laid an egg in Florida.
    6-2 Panthers. SchaddenGooins!

    • saskhabfan says:

      One of my favourite retro comments has to be when he said the leafs were “slowly improving” under burke. Ah,good times. Not sure who takes more egg in the face from their own comments,him or manapart.Either way its always a blast having fun at their expense.

      • Bill says:

        Retro was half right. “Slowly”, yes … “Improving”, not so much.

        Full Breezer 4 Life

      • RetroMikey says:

        one of my favourite frosh habs fan comments was when he said the Habs were going to do damage this year, well he’s half right, we did do damage all the way to the bottom of the standings.
        Look forward to seeing Andy Fantuz do some damage as well in my hometown Hamilton against your Roughriders!

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

        • saskhabfan says:

          awww poor mikey looks like a struck a nerve,again.At least what i said was true,unlike you who has to fabricate posts that were never made.But that is your reputation on this site,so if the shoe fits,or so they say,lol. BTW i don’t live in sask,haven’t for years,was only there for a year when i was there. Couldnt’ care less for the riders,the cats or the cfl in general.But i guess thats all you will have left when the dogs are finally pulled out of that dump of a town. Ah well,its been fun troll kicking again. Enjoy your food basic coupon clipping.

      • habstrinifan says:

        Well I gotta admit, much as I despise the Leafs, a few weeks ago I would have given odds that they would be in the playoffs. What a free-fall.

    • RetroMikey says:

      lol! You’re worried that the Gooins laid an egg in Florida?? The Gooins are in the playoffs and we aren’t, seems we laid too may eggs all season!
      Tank I say! Tank!

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

  12. HNS says:

    Didn’t know LumpQuest was hurt, I mean his feelings….

  13. CF says:

    I score board watch now for entirely different reasons than earlier in the year.
    I actually want those loser leafs to win a few. The only thing better than the loser leafs not making it to the playoffs, is picking higher than them in the draft. After all of his ego manical rants this year, stating how he could have made this deal, made that deal, made the playoffs if he wished, we HAVE to pick ahead of big headed, big mouthed Burke at the draft.
    I remember Burke trying to intimidate Bryan Murray when he picked that loser Kadri, trying to muscle Murray in giving up some picks to land Kadri, Murray just shrugged his shoulders and picked Jared Cowen instead. Isn’t great how Karma comes around!!
    Anyway, picking in the top five can go along way in saving this year for our Team. Price was picked 5th, at the time it seemed like a wasted pick given we already had a goalie. What we need now is a star forward to take some pressure off PK and Price.
    Winning a few games is great, but I’m cheering on NYI, Carolina, TB, and even the history of losing leafs to win a few in order to have our representative (maybe Price and PK) to stand at the draft table as our Habs get a top five pick, and have the chance for first overall.

  14. JohnBellyful says:

    The other day I was thinking to myself, as is my wont, about the situation many Hab fans find themselves in. We want the team to win, but have come to accept, even embrace, each loss as a stepping stone to a greater good: a high draft pick.
    Still, it made for considerable turmoil. It’s a hard thing to overcome, years of diehard support for a team that one cherishes
    So I won’t try any longer. I’m loving anew the boys’ winning ways of late. Keep it up, lads. Screw the draft. Fight for every inch the rest of the way. Win, win, win.
    And you know what, I’m in such a better frame of mind that I’m feeling quite magnanimous and I would hope every poster would join me in an outpouring of goodwill.
    You see, Hab fans – those with long memories – have been spoiled by cheering on the league’s most successful team – from the last century. We shouldn’t be miserly and try to deny lesser teams and their fans the same blessings we’ve enjoyed.
    So, yes, it’s still go, Habs, go, but now I can find it my heart to say with equal fervour, let’s go Canes, Islanders, Leafs, Lightning, Wild and Ducks.
    With this many teams to cheer for, I’m going to enjoy the rest of the season.

  15. blu_blanc_rouge says:

    I was impressed how Randy C. Says “playing like a Montreal Canadien.”

    I wouldn’t be opposed to him returning next year

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      He’s OK. Not sure he’s that good a coach yet.

      I bet he’ll make his mistakes with us and then go somewhere else to win stuff.

      An oldie but a goodie.


      Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

  16. JoeC says:

    I dont know about you guys, but if I’m Malkin, i loath the fact that Crosby is back, the fact that Malking is leading the league in points, and is the best player in the NHL atm, its all over TSN that the kind crybaby Crosby has an F’ing assist.

    Wow, just wow. Malkin gets no respect.

    • The Jackal says:

      Malkin gets a lot of respect. He was recognized as playoff MVP when the pens won the cup, and Crosby was not. Crosby gets a lot of publicity as being the best player – because he is. That doesn’t mean Malkin is forgotten, he’s a great player, but the fact is that Crosby is one of those players that can do anything, he is a true generational talent.

      • Bill says:

        Malkin probably doesn’t ENOUGH respect considering the difference between the hype he and Crosby get.

        Crosby’s career 1.37 PPG is awesome, but only a bit better than Malkin’s 1.22 PPG. Crosby’s only scored 20 more goals than Malkin over their careers.

        I would admit that if Malkin were Canadian or even American, he’d get more respect.

        Full Breezer 4 Life

  17. Marc10 says:

    Love it.

    I would imagine that has a lot to do with the guys in front of him… and father time finally catching up with Trailer Park Timmah!

    I wish them the speed playoff exit they deserved last year and a long boring Summer where Marchand can hit the bars in a big way and Lucic can hit…

    • Bill says:

      To quote TSN:

      “Performance: Thomas is cold (0-1-0, 7.69, .667 in last 2 GPI).”

      Been pretty bad for a month or so it seems.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

      • Ron says:

        It all seems to go back to his no show with the Pres. and his quality Facebook time. No time to stop pucks. I think all the pressure put on him from the public and the broon top brass has led him astray.

  18. ProHabs says:

    Is Chantel MacAbee single? Thank you.

    • Bill says:

      Not lovin’ her tan … but she’s buxom.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

    • Captain aHab says:

      I totally don’t get the interest in her. She has a bad hairdo and is beyond plump. TSN is where the babes are

      —————-
      Avast, me proud beauty! Wanna know why my Roger is so Jolly?

      • ProHabs says:

        What about CBC, Cassie Campbell. Where does she fit in.

        • Captain aHab says:

          She’s far and away cuter than Macchabé. It’s not even a contest. I also used to like Jody Vance from Sportsnet.

          —————-
          Avast, me proud beauty! Wanna know why my Roger is so Jolly?

          • ProHabs says:

            Martine Guillard is still number 1 in my books. She has aged a little bit over the years but still. Sarah Orlesky is good to. I remember meeting her in Ottawa at the NHL draft a couple of years ago and she was drunk as a skunk.

          • Bill says:

            Jody Vance has that cute intellectual look. I do like Jess Rusnak … hot redhead thing, also maybe I just like how she pwned JM in that news conference, haha. But my fave was Martine Gaillard in the early days of The Score.

            Full Breezer 4 Life

          • Captain aHab says:

            Vance had the cute intellectual look yes but she also had a little edge that made you think she might be a freak in the sack. Very nice legs too. I have no idea what Rusniak looks like. Good call on the early Martine Gaillard and for some reason Holly Horton does it for me. Finally how about Natasha on TSN? Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh…shiver me timber.

            —————-
            Avast, me proud beauty! Wanna know why my Roger is so Jolly?

          • ProHabs says:

            I hear ya about Vance. One thing is for sure, the sports viewing has certainly improved since the days of Brenda Irving, Teresa Hergert on TSN and Helen Pelletier on RDS.

        • saskhabfan says:

          Cassie looks great till she opens her mouth,then she is just annoying.

          • Captain aHab says:

            Just turn down the volume…problem solved.

            —————-
            Avast, me proud beauty! Wanna know why my Roger is so Jolly?

    • 24moreCups says:

      Alyonka Larionov I could watch all day, Andi Petrillo from CBC is kind of cute also.

  19. boing007 says:

    Speaking of coaches, Renney’s time in Edmonton could be winding down.

    Richard R

    • nickster13 says:

      He has never been a good coach, even in NY, same in Edmonton, so I wouldnt be surprised to see him go, in fact the Oilers need a stable guy like the sens found in Maclean.

      “I don’t wanna see Maurice tonight, I want the rocket!”

  20. HabFanSince72 says:

    Tim Tom has a .786 save percentage tonight.


    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

  21. boing007 says:

    Leafs 3 Bolts 0. Happy now?

    Richard R

  22. Mattyleg says:

    There’s always lots of talk that injuries don’t matter, and that they aren’t an exuse, yadda yadda yadda…

    The season (as Bill pointed out below, reminding me about this rant) we finished First in the East, we hardly had any injuries. Boston, who finished 8th, on the other hand, were racked with injuries. Their big names came back just before the playoffs, and they beat us handily.

    I have no conclusion.
    So there.

    I’ve been saaaaved!!
    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      double check those results man

      “Patch the holes, ride it out, Play for 2015″
      - Sean Bonjovi

      • Mattyleg says:

        Oh yeah, sorry, they took us to 7 games, and the Flyers beat us handily. The Bruins were a different team in the playoffs than they had been all season.

        My point remains that injuries are more injurious to a team than some people will have it seem.

        I’ve been saaaaved!!
        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • Sean Bonjovi says:

          Look at what injuries did to the Senators, and the Devils last season.

          “Patch the holes, ride it out, Play for 2015″
          - Sean Bonjovi

        • Bill says:

          If you have an average number of injuries – around 200 man games – you’re in the same boat as everyone else and the chips fall where they may.

          If you have far fewer then you will perform better. The Bruins won the Cup last year: very few MGL. Also last year, a weak Carolina team surpised by challenging for a playoff spot: people thought they were on the rise, but really, I think they just a had a really healthy season. Fewest injuries in the league. This year, they have an average number of injuries, and they suck hard, like they should.

          And if you have an unusually large number of injuries, it is impossible to succeed. The two most injured teams this year are Montreal and Calgary, and both have struggled.

          Full Breezer 4 Life

    • Bill says:

      Boston had very few man-games lost last year, btw: 2nd least in the league.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

  23. HardHabits says:

    Anybody guess what Torts just said?

  24. SmartDog says:

    I love it. With PG’s help we’ve picked up THREE big contracts for guys other teams realized were duds – Gomez, Kaberle, now Bourque.

    While OUR “duds” go on to improve on other teams.
    And yet Gauthier still has a job. He must have pictures of Molson doing something very unbecoming. Hey Molson – we’re at the bottom of the league! Is it such a mystery why? Helloooo…

    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • Mark C says:

      When did $3.3M become a “big contract”? And Kaberle can be moved if needed, hell the Wild got a great return for Zidlicky, and Kaberle is better than him.

      • nickster13 says:

        Is he really? I dont hear any stories about Zidlicky being awful, but I hear and heard them about Kaberle for the last year and a half.

        “I don’t wanna see Maurice tonight, I want the rocket!”

        • Bill says:

          That’s funny, because it was just over a year ago that there was a bidding war for him. Then the team that won the bidding war won the Cup, with him leading their blueline in points.

          Full Breezer 4 Life

          • nickster13 says:

            Meh. most of that interest was manufactured by the toronto media.

            “I don’t wanna see Maurice tonight, I want the rocket!”

          • Bill says:

            ^^Nickster: “meh”? Did you see what Boston had to trade for him? Do you think a GM as good as Chiarelli was hoodwinked by the Toronto media? Okay …

            Full Breezer 4 Life

          • Mr_MacDougall says:

            So the “what you heard about him for a year and a half” was legit, but what you do not agree with is “manufactured.”

            Interesting.

          • Mattyleg says:

            Bill, logic has no place in half-formed opinions.

            I’ve been saaaaved!!
            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • nickster13 says:

            Okay… so someone you disagree with, just has no logic. Okay then!

            “I don’t wanna see Maurice tonight, I want the rocket!”

        • Mark C says:

          Ummm have you looked at Zidicky’s stats recently? Or are stories you hear about a player the only measure of a players value?

        • Mr_MacDougall says:

          7 seasons with 40+ points, awful. An average of 47 PPG career.
          Definitely an asset that could potentially be dealt.

    • Bill says:

      Gomez was Gainey.

      Kaberle’s contract isn’t that big. And he was acquired for a UFA.

      Bourque’s contract is also not big. And while I dislike Bourque much more than Kaberle, who is very obviously not a bad player, it must be admitted that Cammalleri was doing his best Bourque impression for us, and also that his contract was way worse than Bourque’s. And also that we got a decent prospect and a 2nd round pick in addition to Bourque.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

    • Max says:

      PG was responsible for Gomez? Gainey had to sign that one off in the end. Kaberle’s contract is not so bad for putting up points and woRking the pp. Bourque’s contract is very reasonable for a 25 goal scorer. Which duds have improved other teams?

      Seems you are only seeing things the way you want to see them.

    • habs-fan-84 says:

      …wow….

    • Mattyleg says:

      Let’s ignore his other stupid moves like drafting MaxPac, picking up DD for nothing and signing Erik Cole.
      Oh, and re-signing Gorges.
      Dumb, dumb, dumb.

      I’ve been saaaaved!!
      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • punkster says:

      Well, you took a lot of heat for that comment SD so I’m certainly not going to pile on. I will say that no matter how any of us feel about PG he’ll likely be replaced at season’s end and it won’t be because of the players he scouted, traded, moved or signed. The whole series of managerial fumbles around the way Pearn and JM were fired, the RC “interiming”, the handling of the Cammy and Gill trades, all contribute to a rather odd portrait of what we might expect from a GM of the Montreal Canadiens.

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

  25. Un Canadien errant says:

    Darren Dutchyshen on TSN, about to give the highlights of the Carolina-St. Louis game: “In a game that has lottery implications for the Leafs…”

    Not implications period. Not implications for the Canadiens, or the Oilers, or at least also for them and the Leafs. Of course it’s all about the Leafs. Hockey Night in Canada and Ron MacLean are not the only hockey telecast that is Toronto-centric.

    ———————————
    How about it NHL? No fighting, just hockey?

    http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/

    • SmartDog says:

      They’re all Toronto boys. It’s all hometown stuff.

      I used to love the CBC, but at this point I say “wanna kill the CBC – go ahead”.

      (And yes I know the post was about TSN, but there’s less we can do about them.)
      ————————————-
      Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • Bill says:

      TSN is frequently worse! Has been forever. Toronto Sports Network.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

      • nickster13 says:

        I dont know, I like some of TSN’s work a lot. While their coverage is still biased sometimes, their personalities are not quite so biased.

        “I don’t wanna see Maurice tonight, I want the rocket!”

        • Un Canadien errant says:

          They do good work at TSN, their analysts are continually refreshed, lots of local correspondents and they send people to the scenes of the crime, they drafted Pierre Lebrun to tack on to Bob McKenzie and Darren Dreger, so there’s no half measures.

          I wonder if Darren Dutchyshen isn’t a lifelong Leaf fan and let one slip there. That kind of comment would have been acceptable on LeafTV, but not at TSN, which endeavours to be a national network and where at least half the viewers hate the Leaf media saturation, if not the Leafs themselves.

          ———————————
          How about it NHL? No fighting, just hockey?

          http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/

          • Bill says:

            Dutchyshen and Dreger both do that stuff all the time. I’d say the NBC broadcast tonight is much better than any TSN or CBC broadcast I’ve heard in years.

            Full Breezer 4 Life

          • Stev.R says:

            I’ve never noticed Dutchy being too biased unless it’s for the Riders, which I think is ok because the network isn’t based out of saskatoon.

            Was he just talking about Toronto in the story before that? He tends to segway like that.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      If Toronto was New York, London, Paris, I’d have no problem with Torontocentrism. But it’s Tronna.


      Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      I took that as a shot AT the maple leafs.

      “Patch the holes, ride it out, Play for 2015″
      - Sean Bonjovi

    • boing007 says:

      He can’t help it, he’s from Sascatchewan.

      Richard R

  26. HardHabits says:

    The top 4 Atlantic teams all have better records or more points than either other Eastern Conference division leaders and thus better records than the rest of the Conference. Think about that. The 1-4 positions in the whole Eastern conference are all from the same division.

    If not for the Canucks, it would be the same scenario for the top 4 Central division teams in the Western Conference.

    As it stands the 1st round of the play-offs is skewered due to 1-2-3 seeding for the 3 division champions.

    This is one of my concerns with the NHL having round 1 and 2 inter-divisionally with the new proposed realignment. It runs the potential to leave stronger teams out of the play-offs while allowing teams with poorer records to participate. It already exists to a certain degree with the Conferences however it has the potential to be even more pronounced with the new format trial balloon the league floated.

    Part of the idea with realignment was to have each team play each other twice during the regular season and the remainder of the games being in the division. Why then after playing almost a full season in the division jockeying for position would the teams then be expected to play 2 rounds against each other again just to get to the Final 4? That makes it look like 4 separate leagues. Currently two very strong ones and two much weaker ones. Another problem with 4 divisions is 2 would have 7 teams and 2 would have 8. Which probably means expansion to even the playing field, and thus a further watering down of the talent pool.

    With 2 conferences split into 4 divisions it makes sense IMO to go with the 1-8, 2-7, 3-6, 4-5 format within the two division leaders seeding 1-2. At the very least it puts less of an onus or perhaps an excuse for the league to expand.

    The league already creates a skewered representation of the standings with the extra point for the OTL. As somebody who lived through the Norris, Smythe, Adams, and Patrick Divisions, I am not sure I would want to see that format repeated again. Reseeding the final 4 for the 3rd round makes things a little more interesting but not enough.

    The game of hockey at the NHL level is trying to evolve, but through trial and error, or perhaps Darwinian selection, is giving appearances of regressing.

  27. Mr_MacDougall says:

    Here is an odd idea. How about allowing teams to trade and sell cap space and perhaps eliminate revenue sharing.

    • Mattyleg says:

      Interesting, but how long would you have the extra space?
      One year? More?
      Sounds like a logistical nightmare! Plus, the big-market teams would clean up, and smaller market teams with lower caps would never attract big players because they would konw that the team wouldn’t have space to sign decent linemates.

      Interesting idea, though.

      I’ve been saaaaved!!
      —Hope Springs Eternal—

  28. JoaquindaPark says:

    A good coach gets the max out of his players. More importantly he gets the max out of his star players. According to you, is Randy Cunneyworth getting the max out of the best?
    The way DD, Max PAC, Cole, Subban and Price are playing, Cunneyworth is on. I would also argue he is squeezing all the NHL hockey there is out of his barely can win in the AHL yahoos like Geoffrion, Palushaj, Weber et al. His challenges? Plekanec and Bourque.
    Based on this I would like to see What Cunneyworth can do with a full NHL level crew. As for the French, who gives a flying seal? Francophones who have listened to Larry Carrière’s interviews probably wish he were unilingual German.

  29. Mattyleg says:

    Boy, the Range are going to be handling Crosby with kid gloves tonight.
    And it has nothing to do with Cooke or any other bonehead.
    Nobody wants to be The Guy That Ended The Kid’s Career.

    I’ve been saaaaved!!
    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Mondou6 says:

      I really despise the Penguins, and Crosby by extension. The Bruins are the only team I hate more.

      • nickster13 says:

        I like to say “where were you guys in 2003 when your team was bankrupt and no fans showed up to the games?”
        Worst bandwagon fan base in the league IMO.

        “I don’t wanna see Maurice tonight, I want the rocket!”

        • Mondou6 says:

          Yeah, no kidding. They go from empty house, bankrupt, about to fold up shop, and then tanking bad enough to grab the next “best player ever”, and go on a Cup winning tear.

          As soon as this current group of Malkin/Crosby leaves, the cycle will repeat.

          • nickster13 says:

            And then their fans sport all the crosby jerseys and act like theyve been fans forever, good one!

            “I don’t wanna see Maurice tonight, I want the rocket!”

        • Bill says:

          I cut the Pens fans some slack. They have suffered through some bad teams in their years, and the ownership prior to Mario was horrendous. Also the economy in Pittsburgh is so up and down. I think they have pretty good fans … for Americans, of course.

          Full Breezer 4 Life

          • nickster13 says:

            They do now at least, have good fans. I dont buy that economy stuff though, fans are fans, and ticket prices usually are sensitive enough to the economy situation. It boils down to no one caring at that time..

            “I don’t wanna see Maurice tonight, I want the rocket!”

        • boing007 says:

          You should capitalize the R in Rocket.

          Richard R

  30. Mondou6 says:

    Regarding PG, you can argue individual signings, trades, and draft picks, but for me the bottom line is that we are at the top of the NHL in revenue and attendance, and last place in the East in points.

    When that happens, it’s on the GM.

    Furthermore, it’s not like we’ve won the Cup in recent memory. The best we’ve done in ages is 8th place in the East. It’s gotten so bad that people still celebrate losing a semi-final sweep 2 years ago, as if it was some sort of dynasty or golden age.

  31. Sean Bonjovi says:

    I just found out that the Triple A baseball team in Albuquerque, New Mexico is called the “Isotopes” : )

    “Patch the holes, ride it out, Play for 2015″
    - Sean Bonjovi

  32. HardHabits says:

    Montreal Canadiens
    no ride can mean last

  33. Bripro says:

    OK so I log on, after working my ass off all day, post one comment,
    and I’m summoned upstairs to start supper.
    (shhh…my kids insist on me cooking. I know….I’m great!)

  34. HabinBurlington says:

    So lots of discussion about PG and RC and the future of them with this franchise. I am fine with both being cleared out this summer provided we see quality replacements. There are very good reasons for both plus BG (I hate to say that, cuz i still respect the man so much) to be cleared out. With that being the case, Geoff Molson essentially becomes the decision maker for doing all of this, as he is both Principal owner and President of the club. Isn’t this the biggest pitfall in an owner naming himself the President? Whether or not I believe Pierre Boisvin would provide the right answers, at least he was a well versed individual familiar with the situation with whom the owner could discuss such moves.

    Problem is, what does Geoff Molson know about running a hockey team in order to make these decisions, who are his advisors aside from BG and PG?

    I wonder if that small move he made making himself President, couldn’t become a critical mistake.

    • Bripro says:

      I’ve seen too many situations of speculation run wild.
      I’m sure you have too my friend.
      Young Geoff Molson, who comes from a family of businessmen, and women, will look at the bottom line and decide for himself.
      I think Gauthier has done some screwball manoeuvres, but RC seems to have them coming around.
      And if he could repeat the successes they had in Hamilton, I’m fine with him staying as head coach, as long as he has Carbo by his side.
      For all the right reasons.

    • mount royal says:

      One other factor to remember about PG. He will always get a bad rap from the media. His penchant for secracry costs them their bread and butter. For some journalists they don’t really care whether he manages well; they only care about how he deals with the media.And for PG, the media is at the bottom of his to do list.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        That is an excellent point. However, I still think a little more visibility on his part wouldn’t hurt him.

      • Rob D says:

        Absolutely! Reporters have their own agendas…they are called “deadlines”..lol IF you parse out the info they need very closely, treat them with contempt (as B,Burke does) or generally make their lives a little tougher with a lack of clarity on even minor issues, the media will be one of the first calling for your head on a platter. Personally, I think PG is a mediocre GM but there are plenty of those around. It doesn’t hurt to be a little more aware of the public relations aspect to your job but it shouldn’t be a requirement to be GM of the Mtl Canadiens. It’s all about winning and in that aspect, PG has failed.

  35. Habs56 says:

    Does anyone know where the game day skate in Ottawa tomorrow will take place?

    • canadiens26 says:

      I’d assume it would take place at the Corel Centre or Scotiabank Place or whatever it’s called. It’s that large building about 30km away from the actual city of Ottawa.

  36. Shane1313 says:

    I want to save this thread. There is some genius on here today!
    Seriously, lots of smart minds on here (Mainly on PG and the habs managment) -good stuff

  37. twilighthours says:

    Now, I don’t think that financial issues should play a part, nor do worry about Montreal being cash-strapped, but…

    What if the organization can only afford to take one big financial hit this summer, and it turns into a choice between canning PG and burying Gomer? If so, what would you do?

    For me, it’s a no-brainer.

  38. Mr. Biter says:

    I find it kinda funny when RC has or JM had a hot line, certain posters will bitch that they should break up that line to “spread the scoring around” and then when the 2 players left without the 3rd one stop scoring the same posters complain the coach is changing the lines around. Sometimes nothing RC does or even JM did pleases this crowd.

    Mr. Biter
    No Guts No Glory

  39. matt jordan says:

    Why do people continually support PG? I don’t get it.

    He traded for Kaberle.
    The team is in last place, has been all year.
    His moves during this season stink of panic, and at best can be described as questionable… Trading players during a game? Firing the assistant coach a half hour before the game, Fired the head coach a month later… Did I mention PG traded for Kaberle?
    Most of the Habs good players are draft picks… Gauthier didn’t bring them in. Subban, Price, Plekanec, MaxPax, Emelin, McDonagh (Oops, oh yah)…
    Gauthier’s good moves are the Erik Cole signing, the Hal Gill trade and signing MaxPac and Desharnais to good contracts. Rene Bourque has been BRUTAL, and his contract SUCKS. Staubitz, Nokelainen, Blunden are easily replaceable. The Halak-Eller trade will be tough to truly breakdown as Halak has been lights out but Eller is gradually improving. Truthfully, I think the Canadiens could’ve gotten a lot more for Halak and Cammalleri.
    Every other year Gauthier has traded draft picks for good players (Moore, Wiz) than let them walk for nothing.
    I think Gauthier and Gainey’s reign of error has come and gone and both should be permanently removed from the organization. If it wasn’t for Trevor Timmins supplying this middling franchise with solid draft picks the Habs would have been in last years ago.

    Also, Pierre Gauthier was the head pro scout and assistant GM when Gomez was acquired, if you don’t think that PG’s fingerprints are all over that trade, you’re kidding yourself.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      There are reasons to let him go and some reasons to keep him. However, if he is let go with whom is he replaced, it must be a clear upgrade. To change for the sake of change does not usually yield great results.

      • Mr. Biter says:

        I also want to see the Goat go, but as HHabsburlington says we gotta have an upgrade not a rookie GM.. PG is definatly not a “people person”. He also makes some very hasty moves which are not thought out (the sudden firings, trades during a game etc.) in my estimation.

        Mr. Biter
        No Guts No Glory

        • thorandresson says:

          Do you blame PG for not catering to the Montreal media though? They’ve proven over many years to be pretty annoying and pretty bad, if you were in his position would you talk to them?

          • HabinBurlington says:

            His personality does not exactly endear himself to anyone, the fans nor the media. No doubt the GM in Montreal is one of the more difficult jobs in Hockey, but if done well also receives incredible rewards. Seems to me he could work on this, but then again, we humans don’t change much at that age. He has come by the moniker Ghost quite naturally it seems to me.

        • thorandresson says:

          They should probably hire a PR person.

      • habstrinifan says:

        The names of possible replacements who are upgrades have been published in many media. I wont go into them in this post.

        Let us give Gauthier (and de facto Gainey) 100% credit for every good acquisition/trade made and allow for the unpredictability factor for every unsuccessful move.

        Is it unreasonable to still want a change simply to get a fresh dynamism going forward. The results from the past 5 yrs or so not that unassailable.. are they.

        Unless we are to go through another 3 to 5 years of a slow rebuild (in which case some of the consensus ‘core’ maybe be too old), the need in the GM office is for someone (or team) with the following:

        a)A compendium knowledge of hockey players in all leagues and countries
        b)An energetic networking relationship with other GM’s and hockey people all over and at all levels
        c)An indefatigable work ethic borne out of sheer love for the challenges of the game/job/team.
        d)An ability and a sense of security to be able to throw ideas and evaluations around a table and come up with well rounded and analysed decisions.
        e) Last but not least a more encouraging and vibrant and answerable presence in the community(city).

        If you honestly believe the above qualities reside in PG (I don’t obviously) then he should be your man… if not then why not make a change. This ‘management team’ had their chance.

        Other teams have made changes to management with better records. If you can say for instance that Burke sould go in Toronto then why shouldnt PG go in Montreal.

        • Bill says:

          “If you can say for instance that Burke sould go in Toronto then why shouldnt PG go in Montreal.”

          Well, Burke’s been there four years, Gauthier two.
          Burke is 0/4 on getting to the playoffs: Gauthier is 1/2.
          Burke signed Connolly. Gauthier signed Cole.
          Burke’s idea of a good goalie: Reimer. Gauthier’s: Price.

          Burke spends most of his team yapping and self-promoting that phony image of his: Toronto is the Burke Show. Gauthier goes about his business quietly, discreetly, and doesn’t make it all about himself.

          In short, Burke is way worse and has had way more of a shot.

          Full Breezer 4 Life

    • thorandresson says:

      you’re a genius buddy, love your arguments especially the “he traded for kaberle one”

      I would nominate you for GM, I bet you could turn this team around in a couple of hours with your new age thinking, absolutely brilliant!

    • twilighthours says:

      I wish you’d tell us your thoughts on these issues.

    • Curtis O Habs says:

      Halak was a UFA come that July, we are lucky we got anything for him.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        I am quite sure Halak was RFA at the time of the trade.

      • Sean Bonjovi says:

        RFA, but that summer the Sharks let Nabokov walk for nothing, the Blackhawks walked away from the goalie that won the Stanley Cup, the Flyers re-signed Michael Leighton, and the Bruins couldn’t give Timmy Thomas away for free, so I can’t see how Halak was worth any more than what we got for him.

        “Patch the holes, ride it out, Play for 2015″
        - Sean Bonjovi

        • neumann103 says:

          Yes, and as I am fond of pointing out what the Habs got for Halak was essentially what they would have got if someone offer sheeted him (+ 1 Year) for the salary range he eventually signed: A first round pick (Eller) and second round pick (Schultz). Trying to figure this out and realizing that Timmins had had his eyes on Eller for a couple of years made it make sense.

          My issue with the Halak deal was that I don’t think the team owes it to any one player to make them a clear Number 1. You are being paid millions of dollars so if the decision is “he is playing 50 games and you are playing 30″ I think that is within the spectrum of reasonable professional expectations.

          At the time I was not so much annoyed that they gave away Halak for nothing, because I quickly learned that Eller was something. I was annoyed that they felt they had to give Halak away. Pay them each ~$3M and platoon ‘em. Lots of teams pay more than $6M in total for Goaltending

          “Et le but!”

    • joeybarrie says:

      Kaberle has been a good addition. We need a more experienced shut down defensive to make up for Weber and Diaz. Kaberle is an offensive D, nd too many people expect too much from him. Funny how the same thing doesn’t apply to Gorges. His 13 points certainly aren’t worth 3.9 million a season.
      Bourque has not been great. But some people thrive in a new environment, some don’t. Other than our top line, no one has really done well, so I will wait till next season to judge Bourque.
      As for letting players walk for nothing. Try to realize that’s how it goes. We picked up Cole, Gio, Cammi, Gill, among others for nothing, and they didn’t come from terrible GM’s (remember Gill came from Pittsburgh, a team everyone on here wants to emulate) Plus we got things in return for them.

      • twilighthours says:

        A defenseman’s first job is to help keep the puck out of the net. Gorges does that against other teams’ top lines and kaberle doesn’t against other teams’ scrubs.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Exactly Joey, Kaberle no doubt has some serious issues in our own zone, but if paired with a true stay at home dman, preferably physical his pluses get accentuated. Long term I hope we trade Kaberle, preferably trade deadline next year, after Markov and company make him look nice and shiny. Problem is we currently have 3 offensive Dmen who defensively hurt us, of the 3 Kaberle clearly has the most offensive upside, probably also the worst defensively. Oh you know what I mean….. :)

    • Bill says:

      The usual recycled stuff here, but I’m bored, so whatever, here goes:

      1) Kaberle – What is so bad about Kaberle? Defensively, he is not the worst D on this team. In fact, I would say he’s better than Weber and Campoli, and possiby Diaz. Offensively, since joining the Habs he produces at a PPG rate that is among the upper tier of D-men. So explain to me what makes him so bad that he can’t play for the Habs? I’d keep him for next year, play him on the 3rd pair at even strength, get him a reliable partner, and let him work the 2nd unit PP. If Gauthier thinks Markov is fully healed, he could easily trade him for picks: his salary is reasonable for a guy who produces his offence, and the term at just two more years is not outrageous.

      2) Team is in Last Place – Injuries. 5 regulars a game since November out of the line-up. How did the Habs do the last time they had this many injuries? How many injuries did they have the year they finished first? I invite you to look into these statistics. This team is in reality a 5th-8th seed team, just as it has been for years.

      3) The Pearn firing I didn’t get, I mean, in terms of the timing. But firing Martin didn’t seem like an outrageous move though. I think he should’ve waited until the end of the year, but whatever. Gauthier deserves a chance to hire his own coach: every GM should get that chance. Naming Cunneyworth “interim” signalled that he plans to do so. As for trading Cammalleri mid-game, it’s not the first time something like that has happened. You make a deal, you don’t want the assets risking injury.

      4) Bourque has sucked, but Cammalleri similarly was sucking. Bourque represents a cap-reduction from Cammalleri, at least, and he came with a decent prospect (Holland) and a pick. So I’m not hating that deal just yet.

      5) It’s great that you THINK the Habs could’ve gotten more for Halak and Eller. You keep on thinkin’. It’s too bad you’re not a GM, maybe you could’ve given us more!

      6) You criticize Gauthier for trading picks for players then letting them walk. Rentals happen. Those rentals both worked pretty well, actually. To be fair, you should then mention all the picks he has stockpiled for the next two drafts: the Habs are picking all over the place in the top two rounds this year and next.

      7) You commit the Hater’s flagrant low-blow of actually blaming another GM’s trade – for Gomez – on Gauthier. Come on. Funny you’re not blaming the trades you don’t like by Gauthier on his assistants then??

      Full Breezer 4 Life

      • rhino514 says:

        I suspect if PG could trade him for picks he would have. I think we are stuck with him. He was brought in to improve the PP and it stayed at the bottom of the league. His only role pretty much is to help the PP. Most of his points are on the PP. But if you watch the games, you can pick out many instances where he has cost the team a goal. It´s completely subjective and you can´t calculate the goals a players costs you the way you can calculate the goals he contributes to, but I have been utterly amazed at the cough ups and failure to cover opponents in his own zone. I can recall specific instances where these lapses directly led to a goal. I can´t recall nearly as many lapses by another D directly leading to goals…maybe Webber is close, but he´s been with the team the whole year.
        i am sure that if you could tally the “true” plus minus of Kaberle; how many goals he contributes as opposed to how many goals he costs your team, he would be a minus player.
        Look at it this way; the PP stayed at or near the bottom of the pile after his arrival. So that means his points on the PP didn´t really contribute to more goals by the team on the PP. They were “empty” assists. On the other hand, defensively….
        And p.s. yes Gorges is worth 3.9 million a year. He is without a doubt one of the best defensive defensemen in the league and stops and can shut down the other teams top forwards. The fact he is a plus 8 on this team, when no one else is even close, is astonishing.

  40. HabFanSince72 says:

    And now Manchester City, the most expensive club in the world, getting totally pwn3d by Sporting Lisbon.


    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

  41. habfan53 says:

    As I was watching the game last night I tried to pay particular attention to Geoffrion. I like what I see. He buzzes around the net, follows thru with his checks, He is responsible defensively (+2). With Leblanc and Elller I can see something develloping.
    He may never be a front line player but he is solid and he gets his nose dirty.

    to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      Last night’s game was easily Geoffrion’s best with the Canadiens, but I was expecting him to be a better version of Mathieu Darche and so far I’ve been disappointed.

      “Patch the holes, ride it out, Play for 2015″
      - Sean Bonjovi

  42. habstrinifan says:

    I have a serious guY feeling that Cunneyworth WILL be the coach next year. He may get a french assistant like Carbonneau but something tells me that the players will go to bat for him.. including Desharnis.

    Whatever he talks like a coach who i shands on with every player. And remember Carbonneau went to bat for him earlier.

    What do you think? The two C’S.

    • shiram says:

      Guy feeling, is that the male version of a female’s intuition?
      edit : way to ruin my post, by correcting yours…

      RC : “Merci beaucoup.”

      • habstrinifan says:

        just for you I went back and made the typo again. LOL!

        • shiram says:

          Aww thanx!
          I’m starting to think next year, Habs will still have RC has HC, PG has GM, and Jacques Martin still on the books…

          RC : “Merci beaucoup.”

          • Mr. Biter says:

            If Habs finish strong and the younger players are devolping under RC I also think he might stay. I think the next 11 games will tell the tale of the tape. If the team really responds and plays well they’re doing it for RC not like the leafs who after 1 lucky win (us of course) have now continued their losing ways and don’t seem to care what Carlyle says.

            Mr. Biter
            No Guts No Glory

          • boing007 says:

            And a French immersion course at a university of his choice this summer.

            Richard R

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      The return of RC seems like a possibility right now, where as two weeks ago it did not.

      “Patch the holes, ride it out, Play for 2015″
      - Sean Bonjovi

    • Sean Bonjovi says:

      double

  43. 123456 says:

    syracuse – wtf

    • Mr. Biter says:

      Their 7 footer got suspended for bad grades. If’ve got them losing next round,but prehaps UNC Asheville will be the 1st 16 seed to beat a #1 seed in the tournay history. 4point game when I looked.

      Mr. Biter
      No Guts No Glory

  44. habstrinifan says:

    Watched the Cole high-five again. Outstanding! So Cool!

    Loved the way he looked back at the ref with that mischievious boyish grin.

    OMG.. I think I am developing a man-crush on Cole.

    Not that there’s anything wrong with that.. is there??

  45. Phil C says:

    Wow, I knew Bourque was playing bad by just watching him, but -17 in 27 games!!!??? That is very, very bad for a big guy who is capable of skating well, especially on a team that plays defense first. All I can say is that RC is a very patient man and Bourque is lucky that Hamilton is already picked clean and there are so many injuries, otherwise he shouldn’t be in the lineup with those numbers.

    If you are not scoring you have to at least be skating and playing defense, or hitting, or fighting, or … something. Bourque has not been skating and is invisible most of the time. How can a pro not understand the co-relation between playing with speed and success on the ice? This is the best league in the world, does he really think he can have success at 3/4 speed?

    I would love to know what the deal is with Bourque. At times he can be dominant, but most nights he is just not moving his feet. Is it laziness? Injury? Concussion issues? Has he put on weight? Lack of focus or motivation? It’s perplexing. If the Habs can’t figure out how to get this guy to skate, they have to cut their losses and unload him just so that he does not take up a roster spot. You can’t win with a guy like that. I’m not surprised Calgary was willing to take on salary just get rid of him.

    • matt jordan says:

      Here’s Hrudey ripping into Rene Bourque..

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

      And why would Bourque care? He’s got a nice long contract, he has no reason to play hard. Like Hrudey says in that clip, if you were to rate Bourque on passion for the game, he’d get a 1/10. He has the tools, but doesn’t care enough to use them.

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        Hrudey asks what GM in his right mind would trade for Bourque. People were asking the same question about Scott Gomez when he was with the Rangers.

        But even funnier is the very last bit: Mike Milbury capping the discussion with “More proof of the danger of long term contracts.”

        Hmm… Yashin? Di Pietro?


        Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

  46. habstrinifan says:

    Randy Cunneyworth on Bourque.

    “I have to push him,” Cunneyworth said of Bourque. “There’s another gear. He’s a tough customer who hasn’t gone there.”

    WOW WOW WOW! I love coaching like this. Challenging the player to be all he can be. If Bourque is any kinda competitior he smiles at this and goes out and attains that higher gear.

    Top notch stuff RC!

  47. thorandresson says:

    I keep hearing a lot of hatred towards Gauthier, and I think it’s for the most part of unfair.

    So in defense of Gauthier:

    His first move was to bring in Dominic Moore for a 2nd rounder, which at the time had most people scratching their heads. But he proved to be an excellent pick up for the playoff run.

    Then he had the balls to trade playoff hero Jaroslav Halak for a player who could still be that coveted big center as well as some muscle.

    He signed Plekanec to a long term deal, and eventhough he’s having a bad year, he’s the kind of guy you want on your team, brings it every night.

    The following year, after the Markov injury, he managed to pick up a suitable replacement and the team still managed to make the playoffs and played toe to toe with the eventual cup winners. Had he not picked up Wizniewski, they would’ve tanked last year like they did this year.

    Then this past summer, he signed Markov to a relatively short term deal, no one would’ve predicted that he would only start the season in March, there was absolutely no way of knowing what would happen. He then had to find a replacement, like the previous year, and he got Kaberle. Unfortunately it didn’t work out as well as the previous year.

    The one move that still has me scratching my head is the firing of JM. I think they’d be in the playoff hunt if he was still the coach. Was he just tired of having teams barely make the playoffs and the story repeating itself? Was he tired of the lack of toughness? Recall that JM is the reason that Laraque and Lapierre had to leave town.

    By the way, I have yet to read any of the so called “journalists” in montreal write a detailed analysis of what happened, they are journalists after all, and shouldn’t they be digging for information and trying to make an analysis of the events? Instead they all come across as whiners who are upset that information isn’t being spoon fed…

    • habs-fan-84 says:

      I wholeheartedly support PG. For some, he’s an easy scapegoat, but that’s all he is is a scapegoat. IMO he’s made some very astute trades. On top of that, he’s also added size and grit to the team.

      Lastly, he was NOT the GM that brought Gomez here. For all people know he could’ve warned BG NOT to make the trade. In any event it was BG that pulled the trigger not PG.

    • Mattyleg says:

      I have a friend who said to me “…and it’s obvious that Gauthier has to go at the end of the season…” like he didn’t even have to qualify it.

      I mentioned one or two points you brought up, PLUS the fact that he picked up Erik Cole, arguably one of the best FA signings the Habs have ever had, and he didn’t have anything to say against it.

      Shows that people just say what everyone else is saying without really looking at the whole picture.

      I’ve been saaaaved!!
      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • shiram says:

        How about the deals for DD and Pac, sure they were RFA so it’s easy to get them cheaper, but those guys are extremely valuable considering their production versus cap hit.
        Liked the Gorges deal too.

        RC : “Merci beaucoup.”

      • HabinBurlington says:

        My issue with PG, is I think JM should have been gone last summer. Clearly these two were on different pages, PG was trying to make the team bigger, JM doesn’t want those type of players. PG also failed to properly fill in the defence corps upon the release of Hamrlik, we knew Spacek was injury prone based on what we saw last season. Campoli was not an acceptable signing to help that team. The 4th line was not addressed, the Betts experiment is not a feasible answer, he was a last minute attempted pick up. Philly liked Betts, knew he was injured and tried to dump his salary. PG had all summer to add a fourth line center and he did nothing about it, just as he did nothing to add some grit to the defencemen.

        He has made other good moves and continues to do so. But he also then brought in RC and threw him under the bus a week later essentially apologizing for hiring him.

        He is not the worst GM in the league, but he also is not in my opinion one of the best either. This team deserves one of the best GMs in the league.

        • Stev.R says:

          Not his fault he didn’t know Betts was injured. I think he expected Enqvist to be more ready than he was, and I think the White injury really hurt us. The Campoli signing was more of a safety net in case Diaz, Emelin, or Weber faultered.

          • shiram says:

            Everyone forgets we got Jeff Woywitka, but he was claimed on waivers.

            RC : “Merci beaucoup.”

        • thorandresson says:

          You make some good points, I think with the 4th liner, he was hoping to make a Halpern type signing. As for Campoli, he’s started to look good of late, and Gauthier couldn’t have predicted that he would’ve been injured the first game of the season.

          Gauthier may not be the best GM, but he probably is the best bilingual GM at the moment. At some point this organization and city has to get over the whole bilingual thing.

      • Cal says:

        My boss calls PG a “freak show”. He’s an avid fan, but he disagrees with how PG handles players and the media.

        I think he’s made more solid moves than bad ones. However, anyone who supports management around here (even a little) must be “delusional” or a “fool” or knows nothing about hockey. I say, “Piss on the naysayers. I am going to enjoy MY team, through good and bad.”

    • Stev.R says:

      100% agree. I like to remember that before the season started everyone predicted this team could finish at least 6th and maybe compete for the the division. When you look at the players on our roster, we are capable of doing so. You can’t fault a guy for building a promising team that for whatever reason doesn’t work. And even when it was apparent something was wrong Gauthier took the initiative to make moves that would both help us now and in the long run. He wasn’t able to right the ship 100% but he is getting us closer, and he certainly hasn’t sunk us. We are so close to being a competitive team. Drop a couple bad contracts and fill them in with promising consistent players and we will be back on top!

    • Bill says:

      I definitely agree. He’s made some home-run moves: Cole this year, Wizniewski last. He got submarined by the slow recovery of Markov’s knee, but at least getting Kaberle healed the power-play. Unfortunately, that wasn’t enough to compensate for the general lack of offence caused mainly by injuries.

      What was that stat? Since November, the Canadiens have had no fewer than five regulars out with injuries every single game? That’s one hell of a bad injury year.

      I like his ability to identify exactly what player suits the team’s needs: that’s what he did with Cole, and tell me, which GM made a better FA pick-up last summer? … *crickets* … I thought so.

      Credit him for the balls to stick with CP over Halak: a lot of posters crap on that one based on Halak’s stats this year, but I don’t trust those stats one bit! Elliot’s stats are even better than Halak’s, and before this year Elliot’s save percentage was a career .901 or so. now it’s what, over .930??

      This summer, if Gauthier can get rid of Gomez, find a tough stay-at-home D for the third pairing, acquire some forward depth, and lock up Subban, Pacioretty, and Price, I’ll say he had a great summer.

      Some people say he should be fired if he doesn’t get Parise. I say he should be fired if he DOES. You know what kind of contract Parise’s going to get: the Habs should steer well clear of it.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

      • thorandresson says:

        It would just be a shame if Gauthier doesn’t get the opportunity to do those things. It’s seems fairly unanimous that everyone in the media expects the guy to be ousted. Then again, the Montreal media is pretty laughable.

  48. habstrinifan says:

    Randy Cunneyworth:

    “It’s not in me and not in the group to lay down,” the coach said. “We’re competing. We continue to grow, regardless of circumstances.

    Not if we revert to the JM lay-back style as we did after the 2-1 lead.

  49. habstrinifan says:

    Haven’t had a cahnce to post much during or afte rthe game. I am still fuming.. not because we won.

    But I hated the way we played after the 2-1 lead. As if we were back to the let’s play ‘not to lose’ which has gotten the team in so much trouble this season and which did this game too. Many Many times before Buffalo tie dit up we had the chance to rush the puck and set up a forecheck.. and we didnt. There was just a lot of dumping with no forecheck and lots of face-offs in our end.

    I may be alone in this complaint but it sucks and I thought we had gotten away from this strategy.

    Regardless of whom we draft etc, we gotta quit on this passive strategy after we get a lead. To be fair it seemed that we had in the last few games befoe this one.

    I dont mind us winning and losing a lottery draft position but not playing like last night.

  50. HabinBurlington says:

    Steve Simmons ripping Burke and Friends pretty good in this article. PG has issues and I would like to see him replaced, but at least he is willing change his thinking. He admits the team needs to get bigger and has worked on it.

    Burke will never admit he has ever made a mistake.

    http://www.torontosun.com/2012/03/14/leafs-are-a-monumental-disaster

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Brian Burke is an incompetent blowhard. I’ve been saying it since day one.

      I don’t know what Claude Loiselle is doing in T.O. but I sure hope he doesn’t become our GM.


      Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

      • Mattyleg says:

        What do you mean?
        Look at how hard Burkie works!
        He works so hard that he works his tie off!
        Sometimes he’s so hard at work that his tie hangs limply around his shoulders like a tamed boa constrictor! Or an Asp!

        I’ve been saaaaved!!
        —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • VancouverHab says:

        “Brian Burke is an incompetent blowhard.”

        That was my thought when he was in Vancouver, but not so well expressed. (And he is the same in TO).

        Well phrased, mein herr.

  51. HabinBurlington says:

    So Blunden says he is ready to go, would be good if they put him right back in lineup. He provides great energy and good skating to 4th line.

    • habs-fan-84 says:

      White, Staubitz and Blunden. A great 4th line, probably the first legit 4th line we’ve had in years.

      • habfan53 says:

        Yeah Right 93 games 2 goals 1 assist 147 PIMs between them

        to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

        • matt jordan says:

          It’s bettter than Gomez, Nokelainen and Y. Weber

          • habfan53 says:

            Actually they are not
            Gomez, Koks and Weber 0.05 goals per game and 0.18 points per game
            White,Staubitz and Blunden 0.02 goals per game and 0.05 points

            to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

        • habs-fan-84 says:

          They’re not being paid to score goals. Goals are an added bonus for what they are here to do.

          • habfan53 says:

            I don’t think there shut down is much better.
            The fourth line has to be able to play 7-9 minutes, provide energy, and NOT be a liability, I have not seen anything from White in the last 4 games despite being on the second line with Pleks
            As for Staubitz he would have to go for more than 2 shifts without a fight. that leaves Blunden and I have no problem with him there.

            to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

    • habstrinifan says:

      I agree.. I want to see what Blunden Geoofrion etc can do rest of the season.

  52. HabinBurlington says:

    Given how bad Tampa’s goaltending is these days, shouldn’t tonights game with the Leafs be winnable?

    • The Jackal says:

      I hope so, I don’t advocate taking and never will, but a nice draft pick would really help this team. The last thing I want is for the leafs to get a better pick than us!

    • habfan53 says:

      No Because Toronto CAN’T SCORE

      to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

    • thorandresson says:

      Did you see how they killed the Bruins on Tuesday?

      • HabinBurlington says:

        I am trying to find a way for us to maintain our draft position and enjoy our wins! I realize I am digging very deep.

        • thorandresson says:

          I hear yah, but at the same time I like the idea of the team finishing the year on a good note and having them build on that momentum next year. They’ll probably finish with 80 points and it’ll mean a top 7 or 8 pick, and if Timmins does his thing it’ll yield a fairly good player.

          I think it’s way more likely that one of the prospects in the current pipeline will have more of an impact than the 1st round pick next year. And those prospects look pretty good next year, Hamilton is going to be a transformed team with the additions of: Kristo (still to be signed but it’ll happen), Bournival, Holland, Gallagher and on D, Tinordi, Ellis and Beaulieu.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Oh I am still cheering for Habs every game, i just dont want TOronto to be rewarded with a pick is all. I really thought they were a shoe in for 9th place in the East earlier this year.

          • thorandresson says:

            I know, I was hoping that the Habs could put the nail in the coffin on their playoff hopes at the end of the season, but it looks like they’ve done it to themselves much earlier…

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        Yes. They shot a few pucks at the net, and half of them went in.


        Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

    • savethepuck says:

      Dustin Tokarski is playing in goal tonight ( you may remember he was the starting goalie for Canada at the WJHC a few years ago). It’ll be his 4th start in a row for them. Reimer us confirmed for Toronto which is surprising considering he gave up 5 to Fla his last start.

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

  53. HabFanSince72 says:

    Manchester United getting totally spanked in Bilbao. Always nice to see.

    http://atdhenet.tv/44663/watch-athletic-bilbao-vs-manchester-united


    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

    • Bob_Sacamano says:

      Absolutely. Hate them nearly as much as the Bruins. Bilbao looks surpringly good for a team that is only 7th in Spain.

      • joeybarrie says:

        Curious as to why you hate united like you do the Bruins.
        Boston has always played us a lot, and they have had good teams, but I hate the way they have played in the last 10 years. I dislike them, I see United being like Detroit. Can’t say I dislike them.

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        English football has reverted to type. No ball skills. Just hoof it up the pitch and hope.


        Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

  54. habfan53 says:

    There is a new video to show young players how to drive to the net. It features Eric Coles last 3 goals
    Well there should be anyway.

    to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

  55. shiram says:

    Last night’s gif…
    Desharnais Ballet
    Cole’s high 5

    RC : “Merci beaucoup.”

    • EastCoastJoe says:

      Cole’s High 5 is one of the funniest things I’ve seen on a rink. The huge grin on his face afterwards is priceless. Has anybody seen any quotes from the ref? I wonder what he thought of it. Lovin’ Cole in the CH.

  56. habfan53 says:

    Last night after Andrei got the puck in the face and went down, I loved his reaction when HE did get up just shows how much he wants to play.
    No tanking in his blood. You want to wear this sweater wear it with pride.

    to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

  57. naweed235 says:

    I for one was impressed by St-Denis’ play last night… Actually, he impressed me in the preseason as well as the few other regular season games he played in MTL… he seems pretty stable on the back end and is not afraid to pitch in offensively… I would like to see him given a chance next year on the bottom pairing if we somehow get rid of that dead weight Kaberle…

    Markov – Emelinator
    Georges – Subban
    St-denis – Bryan Allen
    (Diaz 7th)

    That would look like a decent D corps if you ask me!

    • habfan53 says:

      Hate to disappoint you but we will still have Kaberle unless PG can do what Gainey did with Theodore. Find someone to take over his contract.

      to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

      • thorandresson says:

        I really don’t get it how some people seem to think that Kaberle’s contract is unmovable. He’s only making 4.25 for the next 2 years, he’s still a productive player and still has puck moving skills that some other teams could use. I know 4.25 million dollars is a lot of money for us normal people, but in the nhl it’s not that crazy and as the cap goes up every year, 4.25 looks smaller and smaller. Remember the average salary on a team can be as high as 3 million dollars (quick math 70 million dollars divided by 23 players…)

        This whole idea that the Kaberle move was terrible is absolutely ludicrous, especially considering that Carolina couldn’t even move Spacek at the deadline…

        • shiram says:

          If Ruutu and Hemsky are worth 5 millions, I say Kaberle who has just about the same points as those 2, is ok at his cap hit.

          RC : “Merci beaucoup.”

          • rhino514 says:

            But Kaberle is a disaster defensively. He costs us goals big time.
            He´s a specialty player i.e. only for the PP and guys like that don´t deserve that kind of salary, not even close.

          • shiram says:

            The whole team is a disaster in it’s own zone.

            RC : “Merci beaucoup.”

      • neumann103 says:

        I don’t think Kaberle’s contract is unmovable. Sure there could be a team desperate for a PP specialist. And the thing about Spacek not moving at the deadline is kind of meaningless because:
        - almost no one moved at the deadline
        - they don’t have to move Spacek. He is a UFA in 3 months.

        My issue with Kaberle was that he was not much of an upgrade over Spacek and you are taking on that contract at a time when you need to take care of a ton of key RFA deals (Price, Subban, Eller, Emelin, Diaz, and I would argue White, Blunden, St Denis) You can make your own minds up about Palushaj, Geoffrion, Nokaleinen, and Brendon Nash)

        And that doesn’t even touch on the UFAs and next years RFAs (DD, MaxPac etc) and the expected graduating crop of current prospects.

        While I doubt if they will be active in the Free Agent market (it is a bit of a lame year) if a Suter or Parise was willing to come…

        If ever there was a time they needed a bit of flexibility in cap space it could be now.

        “Et le but!”

    • matt jordan says:

      but what about the guys who have contracts, like Weber and Kaberle? (expletive)

    • habs-fan-84 says:

      he’s been reliable every time he’s been called up this year.

  58. db says:

    By the end of his time in Montreal, Cole will have quite the compilation of funny things done during a game.

    When he was on the bench, with that nasty stache, beckoning someone to come over… I thought I was gonna die laughing. And now the high five to a ref LMAO. This guy is gold. A true leader on and off the ice. He’s playing hurt but doesn’t slow down. He’s had a fractured neck yet still goes flying into the corners. I love this guy!

    To all those that are asking professionals to tank… you need to learn more about human beings, especially at that level. Although, the Leafs sure are showing that anything is possible.

  59. Danno says:

    Hilarious!

    Here is Erik Cole giving the referee a high five after scoring last night:

    Also video of last night’s shootout including David Desharnais’ game-winning goal:

    http://dennis-kane.com/the-high-five-and-the-shootout/#respond

    ________________________________________

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

  60. HabinBurlington says:

    Leafs are getting into Full Out Tank Mode,
    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=390415

    Phil Kessel will be getting a lower body injury within days as well I am sure. Every finesse player on that roster is going to be feigning injury to avoid playing for Carlyle.

    • habfan53 says:

      I see Kulimin is going to miss the next 3 weeks with a broken finger probably did it himself so HE would not have to play for Carlyle

      to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

    • habstrinifan says:

      It’s gonna blow up real good in TO. One of the stupidest coaching hire ever… when one considersthe roster. Maybe Burker plans to get the Neidermayers to sign in Toronto.

  61. jon514 says:

    Wait… so are we happy or sad when we pass the leafs?

    “Let’s be clear on the facts…”

    • shiram says:

      That last game is gaining in significance.

      • jon514 says:

        we can’t even fail right…

        “Let’s be clear on the facts…”

        • shiram says:

          Chew on this one, if the Habs continue winning, fall out of high draft picks, RC might just keep his job!

          • Drew42 says:

            I hope he keeps his job regardless. He really isn’t that bad of a coach. Plus you can see that the players are playing for him.
            Nice guy too who took the time after the Habs win in Vancouver to talk to a fan.

            _______________________________________________
            “I got to get the Swede, eh?” – Saku Koivu

          • jon514 says:

            I feel bad for the guy. I also know he’s gonna end up getting a job somewhere else where he’ll win a cup. His big problem is he only knows how to coach players who fit into his forechecking style… which is why he probably should have spent a few more years in the AHL or as an AC.

            “Let’s be clear on the facts…”

  62. twilighthours says:

    Too many threads. I wish the HIO guys would figure this out.

  63. habfan53 says:

    Seeing as the golf season is almost here for Toronto (and Montreal) it was good to see that Mike Weir shot a -4 in Spain today.

    to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

    • Willy says:

      Going to the driving range Saturday, can’t wait to bust out the new clubs i bought at boxing day.

      And good for Weir, sad how quickly he fell off the map.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I don’t see him ever getting his game back unfortunately. Really was too bad that soon after he won Augusta he felt he needed to change his swing in order to become a bigger hitter. In the process he has lost confidence in his short game and additionally seems to have a chronically injured elbow. Mike his 1st cousin lives here in Burlington and used to play on my slopitch team. Was funny the guy would go out to the golf course with us, half his set was 20 year old clubs mixed in with tour wedges and drivers that Mike would give him.

  64. Kimberly2u says:

    Now I think I’m fourteenth ….lol …working for a living interferes with blogging here

  65. HabFanSince72 says:

    Guess we know who won the Bourque trade…


    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

  66. rhino514 says:

    Who is least likely and more likely to be with the club next season? Which guy hurts the least to keep on the team?

    1) Kaberle
    2) Bourque
    3) Gomez

    We only had one albatross contract to start the season. Now we have three.

    • Mustang says:

      Gomez was in the process of going down hill when he arrived in Montreal. Kaberle was well past his best-before-date a couple of years ago. I guess that time will tell how good, or bad, Bourque is.

      So I really don’t have a very good opinion of either Gomez or Kaberle and I am in a wait-and-see position with Bourque.

  67. Mr. Biter says:

    Just watched the Cole”High Five” vidio and loved it. Here’s a players going full out though we probably won’t make the playoffs still having fun and the high five is one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen. Wonder what the Ref was saying in thier dressing room after the game?
    I think he should be Captain next year but would not want to be the person telling Gionta to take the “C” off as he is also a great player but to me Cole seems he would have a greater role in the dressing room than Gionta but I don’t know. As pro’s or con’s?

    Mr. Biter
    No Guts No Glory

    • shiram says:

      Guy can lead in the locker room even without a letter on his jersey, no?

    • habfan53 says:

      I have no problem with Gionta wearing the “C” . He has done nothing to show disrespect and he plays hard and leads bu example ( A lot like Beliveau used to do).
      With all the sillyness that went on this year lets no continue it and take the “C” from our captain.
      When the time comes for a new captain Cole would be an excellent choice as would Josh Gorges .

      But lets not get ahead of ourselves 5 years ago Thought Chris Higgins or Mike Komisarek would have been excellent choices.

      to paraphrase Nixon: If the Bruins do it, it is not illegal

  68. Mattyleg says:

    Posted this on the other thread, but talk about your bad trades/drafting…
    Edmonton got LA’s 1st rounders in ’89,’91 and ’93 as part of the Gretzky trade.
    Edmonton only got one pick in the 1st in ’89 (what happened to their other one?) They picked Jason Soules, missing out on Ollie Kolzig, Adam Foote and Travis Green.

    In ’91 they used LA’s pick for Martin Rucinsky who they used for 2 games. We all know how good he was for us. They missed Kovalev and Markus Naslund and a ton of others.

    In ’93 they used their own pick for Jason Arnott, and LA’s for Nick Stajduhar. Hmm. Missed out on Saku and Bertuzzi amongst others.

    How’s that for bad trades/drafting?
    Yikes.

    I’ve been saaaaved!!
    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  69. shiram says:

    Hey me and RC agree on stuff about Bourque and PK! neat

  70. Kimberly2u says:

    FIRST !!


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