Multimedia: Short, brisk practice for Habs

AUDIO: Jacques Martin English and French | David Desharnais | James Wiesniewski
VIDEO: Wisniewski, Subban, Price below

The Canadiens were back on practice ice this afternoon at the Bell Centre to prepare for tomorrow’s matinée vs. the visiting Atlanta Thrashers.

Only Michael Cammalleri, newcomer James Wisniewski and Josh Gorges, the workhorse defenceman who was placed on injury reserve this week to let his injured right knee heal, were not on the ice.

No reason given for Cammalleri, who was seen in gym shorts and T-shirt shortly before the practice, but Wisniewski was having a few minor bumps and bruises tended to by training staff, and recovering a bit from a hard travel and playing stretch since he was acquired by the Canadiens from the New York Islanders.


On traded Canadien Maxim Lapierre, head coach Jacques Martin said in
French: “Maxim is a very good person, a very good professional, the type
of player who works hard.” Martin commended Lapierre for his service to
the Canadiens, but wouldn’t directly reply to a question about the
player’s claim that the coach had lost confidence in him in Montreal.

Price starts in goal Sunday afternoon against the Thrashers. Martin
said he’ll firm up his lineup before the game, having a seventh
defenceman and 13th forward with the arrivals of Wisniewski and David
Desharnais. If Martin knows how, where and when he’ll use Desharnais,
who’s been burning up the American Hockey League with the Hamilton
Bulldogs, he wasn’t letting on.

The Thrashers held an optional practice of their own Saturday, sending about a dozen players out for a light session. There were no goaltenders and no sign of star defenceman Dustin Byfuglien.


  1. Former Jets Fan says:

    Gauthier’s history shows a remarkable willingness to make many small moves, for organizational depth, to give players a fresh start, and/or to take a flyer on other teams’ project players.  He has not, however, shown a propensity for making any “big moves.”

  2. Sportfan says:

    that should work but the problem is at the moment is Gionta and Gomez are clicking and JM will probably not tweak anything.


    on a side note Haha in Nhl 11 Desharnais is nerfed i got a hat trick my second game with him and first game got 3 points

  3. Danno says:

    I like it.


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

  4. The Cat says:

    I dont think itd be a big ‘superstar’ player, the habs dont have enough to give, the ones the other teams would want they probably dont want to take on that salary…On the other hand, I could see a trade with Columbus (not Nash of course).

    [Disclaimer]: I’m a hockey fan. I care about the habs, but probably not as much as you.

  5. solomio says:

    I;ll repeat myself by saying that if JM doesn’t put Desharnais with Maxpac we’ll know for certain that he’s got a screw loose.

    I’d like to see the following:

    Maxpac / Desharnais / Gionta

    Eller / Gomez / Puliot.

    Along with the top line of Cammy / Pleks / Kostitsyn I think we’ve got 3 very offensive considerations for the opposition to handle.

  6. Willy the bum says:

    I think it would be cool if JM should put Subban with Wisnieuski and called it “PK and the Wiz”; that line could be the next “Smokey and the Bandit” or something.

    Sorry, still got the buzz from last night….

  7. ooder says:

    festerling.. who the hell is tha tlol


    88 is the new 23

  8. Bogie Man says:

    With the movements that have come as of late, calling up DD and pulling the trigger on a trade with Laps where we did not get anything in return but someone we can use for the farm team, along with Gorges and Markov on IRL leads me to believe this is freeing up cap space to make a bigger move. What is out there worth pursuing? The top three forward UFA’s are Richards, Thorton and Semin. Who can you see in a CH Jersey. I think Thorton will not leave San Jose and Richards may cost us too much. I like Semin and I think we could have enough cap space to afford him with a trade to include Pouliot or Pax.

    What do you think?

  9. Mad Habber says:

    I wish it was Fistric…for those wondering about Festerling, here’s his profile from the hockey news website:
    ASSETS: A hard-working and smart rearguard, he makes good decisions. A leader in the locker room, he can also chip in on offense when needed.
    FLAWS: While good in his own end, he is not an intimidator and should use his 6-1 frame more to his advantage. Lacks offensive flair.
    CAREER POTENTIAL: Depth defenseman.

  10. ooder says:

    cool thanks Rob…

    although it took you way to long to answer.. il chop it up to a new years hangover ;)


    88 is the new 23

  11. Everlasting1 says:

    He’ll be moved, or be mired in mediocrity if he doesn’t outright suck.


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

     Don’t pollute the water.

  12. Psycho29 says:

    So we traded a festering sore for Festerling…

  13. SeriousFan09 says:

    LH Shot, 6’1″ 210 pound D Brett Festerling has been assigned to the Hamilton Bulldogs, he has 3G, 9A in 32GP this season, a -10 with 48 PIM.

    With the continous injury situations of Mathieu Carle, this is good news for HAM, but he’s probably maxing out as a 6th-7th defencemen from best-case scouting reports from what I’ve read so far. He will be added to Habs Future next week, because I don’t feel like adding him in this one.


    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.

  14. ooder says:

    happy new years guys!!!!

    quick question.. lapierre was traded for fistric..

    what are they planning on doing with him?


    88 is the new 23

  15. Bugs says:

    And I hope you learn to follow plot of threads.

    Hope springs eternal, baby!

    Happy New Year, signed

    L. Bugs Potter, esq., Herzog of ze Abominable Habsuchtig Brigade, Markgraf of ze Fearsome Flanell Flausen Flank, und devoted minion of ze Habsbros Order:

  16. Jonson says:

    Dont seperate Eller and Pouliot they play SO well together. those two could dominate in a couple of years. Lets be honest, there is no room desharnais. maybe next year.

  17. Jonson says:

    Ask brent seabrook how sweet this guy is

  18. LA Loyalist says:

    I think your #4 is actually #1. I think it’s in JM’s contract. :)

    you actually made a funny (maybe by accident) – there’s a (really good) movie called 13th warrior and that small Spanish actor is the “13th Warrior” who goes off an adventure with a bunch of Vikings.

    Oh that we had a few Vikings on the Habs right now.

  19. Jonson says:

    since when does versteeg have grit???

  20. LA Loyalist says:

    That’s interesting. There’s anger in Calgary over losing Cam-Cam after he lit it up in the playoffs last year. Getting him back might dilute some of the anger of losing Iginla.

    I see a big trade, 3 or 4 players going each way (risk management). I see Weber exposed if we think we can re-sign Wiz and get Markov back next year. But we don’t have much depth to work with. I’d send Cam-Cam (don’t want to, but…) and Gionta for Iginla. I’d rather send AK (inconsistent) and Gionta or???

    As for size, I have no problem with DD’s size (Henri Richard was 5’7″, Mats Naslund, too) IF we have some studs around them to create space and time. Size is a problem on our team because it’s unbalanced.

    What kind of package do you see as possible? 

  21. punkster says:

    All in all I think we just tend to overanalyze, overthink and overreact with all the overdosing we do on the Habs which causes overconcern for things that we can’t overcome ourselves. I think it’s a slump, that the team leadership will come through to snap them out of it and that Martin is a good coach who is trying to make a bubble team as competitive as possible with limited scoring talent. Hey, give us one additional goal a game and we’re not having this type of discussion, are we? That’s the problem, the source of “tension” and the ultimate solution.


  22. LA Loyalist says:

    The bitter joke is that THIS was supposed to be the team put together methodically, with leadership, intangibles, character… yup, that worked.

    I was neutral on Gionta being C, and at this point in the season I’m not seeing it. Obviously there’s wiggle room in expectations due to the loss of Markov, but the lack of effort and intensity is embarassing.

    To me it still comes down to there not being a clear template for what this team is supposed to be — and that comes down to leadership at the top. From the small moves he’s made PG may be ok, let’s see if he can pull off something substantial.

    “too small, too soft, too intangible”

  23. habs365 says:

    I don’t think wisniewski is scared of anyone..I would say he’s Laps replacement and a much better player

  24. showey47 says:

    Yeah,your right,i would not be laughing at all.

  25. Hagar says:

    You forgot to mention playing Moen on the second line. Lack of physicality there or not, he doesn’t belong there (there, that’s twice now I’ve criticized JM).

  26. LA Loyalist says:

    1. No. Because he’s trying to coerce them into a system that isn’t suited to the talent we have.

    2. Yes. Maybe confusion isn’t the right word as I think it’s clear enough what JM wants.

    3. Gauthier has done well so far getting Halpern and Wiz, he’s hitting singles though, and we need at least a triple.

    4. About the same if Price plays well, but still to small, too soft, too intangible.

    5. No way, Martin can’t optimize a team because he won’t adjust to the players he has. He tries to break them to him and that won’t work for more than the short term. 

    BTW thanks for explaining your methodology, it’s interesting.

  27. showey47 says:

    I just wanted to bolts to win in regulation. The fact that desjardins was in net is irrelevent to me,but probably not to some people here.

  28. habs365 says:

    wow that would be a great move..23 pt player for a 9 pt player..hope you never take PG’s job.

  29. habs365 says:

    it’s a bubble thing..Halak started that way with st.louis..than his bubble broke.

  30. SmartDog says:

    Rift might be a strong word, but I mean to say I think the team isn’t as well stiched-together as it needs to be to play well. IT’s a fragile union.  I don’t see one major issue but there seems to be a fair bit of discord, guys that want to play the game different ways, veterans that have had a LOT of bad games, lines changing… and the lacklustre play we’ve seen to me is a product of a team that is not gelling, doesn’t have the direciton it needs, is not being served by great leadership.  Speaking of which, I see the coach as the key source of leadership (the buck stops there) but I htink Gionta hasn’t shown any sign that the C is in the right place. It could come – Gionta deserves more time.. but Martin… if he’s not an excellent coach now (and in my view he’s proven that like some players he’s prone to too many bone-headed moves) he won’t be. 

  31. Bugs says:

    Neil better than AK…

    Error. Does not compute. Please reformulate.

    Happy New Year, signed

    L. Bugs Potter, esq., Herzog of ze Abominable Habsuchtig Brigade, Markgraf of ze Fearsome Flanell Flausen Flank, und devoted minion of ze Habsbros Order:

  32. punkster says:

    You would not be laughing so hard in my chair.

    Hey, like the new pic. I have one taken of me with the cup and two Als cheerleaders last year at a charity event. Sweet!


  33. showey47 says:

    “this organization has more ex’s on the payroll than I do”-LMFAO

  34. punkster says:

    No trashing ;) It’s all good. See, I don’t think there’s enough controversy or mystery going on there to cause a team to stop playing for their coach. I believe that’s simply an easy and juicy story for people outside the team to generate talk. They feel self-satisfied that they know what they’re talking about because, hey, everybody’s talking about it so it must be right (therefore I must be right) and what other possible explanation could there be?

    Rift? Naaa, no proof, no evidence of a rift. If it exists, show me. The players are pros and the senior guys are experienced and knowledgeable vets who’ve been through the system and seen first hand way more than we, mere fans, will ever see. It’s a slump, not a controversy. I have to say that whenever I hear someone talking about a “cancer” in the room or some unknown controversy setting the players against eachother or the coach my internal “conspiracy theory alarm” rings loud and clear… Area 51, Dealey Plaza, Twin Towers etc.

    Coaching change? Sure, could happen. If they don’t make the playoffs this year it is possible. But this organization has more ex’s on the payroll than I do (and “I do” is a phrase I have used way too many times, believe me). They’ll tough it out for a while longer if it comes to that.

    It’s all good Rob ;)


  35. SmartDog says:

    I can’t tell if you’re being sarcastic!

    I do try to be positive when I can…. but mostly I think we’re handcuffed up front by some of our contracts and by a lack of physicality (too many guys that don’t want to get dirty… smallish to begin with), and by Martin’s coaching style which i don’t like (riding Price which is dumb, benching PK, shuffling lines too much, rewarding poor veteran play, over-punishing rookies). I do think MArtin has trouble getting the most out of a lot of players, and that’s his job.

    Argh. There are positives… when our D and Price are on, we’re extremely tough to play, 75% of the time the Pleks line is a constant threat, PK could be a great addition of Martin doesn’t strip him of power, the Wiz pick-up is good.


  36. light_n_tasty says:

    That’s wrong.  It freed up 0.9 mil in annual cap space.  We didn’t take any cap hit from Festerling because he plays in the AHL.  The mean salary on the team has nothing to do with it…

  37. novahab says:

    Well first Neil has burned us many times and second he can score and he has the size and toughness to match up with Lucic and the goons for the flyers. I think he is just is not playing for Ottawa just like the rest of that team. AK shows up ever 6th or 7th game and he is no t going to protect any of out players. PG is not going to get a Lafleur player for AK and for the record there was only one Lafleur and he was the best player since Richard to ever play in the NHL. If Lafleur had played for another team where they wouldn’t ask him to play D like Gretsky he might be holding all the scoring records.

  38. light_n_tasty says:

    1. Yes

    2. Yes

    3. Yes

    4. No, but only because Markov is injured now, and he wasn’t at this time last year.  If Markov was healthy, this year’s squad would be better than last year’s.

    5.  No, but not because of Martin.  We need a true star forward before we have a solid chance at the cup.

  39. HabFanSince72 says:

    Guy Lafleur is your all-time favourite Hab and you’d take a washed up goon like Neil for AK46?


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