No rest for weary Canadiens

WeberFoligno
Less than 24 hours after their overtime loss in Ottawa – during which they had 14 shots on goal, their season low –the Canadiens are back at it against the Islanders at the Bell Centre.
It’s a St. Patrick’s day battle for 14th place.
Can you feel the excitement?

Pat Hickey’s game story from Ottawa

Quotes from the room and photo gallery

Karlsson for Norris?

Red Fisher’s notebook

François Gagnon’s game column

Pierre Ladouceur’s game report card

Bob Hartley on tanking for draft position

Inside the video review room

273 Comments

  1. Bill says:

    @ SMARTDOG

    Hmm, well the only really bad trade I can think of was the Sergei Kostitsyn deal. I admit, at the time that trade made me think Gauthier was some kind of moron. And it remains a dreadful deal. I don’t he’s made big mistakes other than that. And he’s had success, as I posted earlier. I love all the draft picks he’s piled up for the next two years as well.

    He’s also drafted (Beaulieu, Tinordi, Gallagher) and acquired (Bournival, Holland) some pretty nice prospects.

    I’d like to give a GM three years to demonstrate some forward movement, personally.

  2. HardHabits says:

    58,912 at the Big Owe watching the Impact.

    EDIT: And they score! And a beautiful goal it is.

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      58,912 all scored? Wow! I would love to see the replay. :) /kidding/

      • SmartDog says:

        Lotsa passing. Musta been taking lessons from Germans.

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

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Now that is some smart football talk there. Danke mein herr!

          • SmartDog says:

            I don’t know if it’s still the same – I don’t watch that much anymore but when I used to play a lot (20 years ago) the Germans were the NJ Devils of soccer. Strong teams…but patient, patient, patient..zzzzzzzzzzzzz…..

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

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Actually they have become a bit of an offensive juggernaut in recent years. Always will be a team that plays from the back out and stress good defence, but in recent years they have some sparkling young talent up front and in the midfield.

            The Euro this summer will be great, unfortunately 2 of the 3 best teams in Europe are in the same group Holland/Germany, the old Group of Death.

            You are correct in your characterization of the teams playing style over the past 20 years.

    • fastfreddy says:

      1) Gomez goes
      2)Keep Eller, he’s younger, more to come. You’re not going to get much more from Pleks. But I’d try to keep him too.
      3)Tough one. If you can find a tough guy in the ranks then release Staubits, if you can’t, keep him.
      4) Goat goes!
      5) Diaz goes

      CH = Les Glorieux!!!

  3. ont fan says:

    A little off topic..can’t believe how sore the back of my legs and groin area are from playing golf the last 3 days. How ’bout the rest of you guys in S. Ontario.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      You obviously aren’t keeping yourself properly liquidated during the rounds :) Played twice, but surprisingly not sore. Perhaps because I played so poorly the 2nd time out that may have been a factor.

      Great to be back out there eh! Which area you in and what courses you playing?

      Edit: Checked your profile, Ken you are in the actual Tropics of Canada there in Leamington. I have some relatives there, nice town. I have never golfed in the area, do you ever go up Sarnia way and play in the Brights Grove area? You know catch the magic of Weir.

    • matt jordan says:

      This is the wrong spot to try to directly contact the Toronto Maple Laughs.

      I’m sure they’re fine, TML is very used to playing golf, some would say a dynasty.

    • SmartDog says:

      I watched a coupla rounds on tv and my butt is sore.
      Phew! What a workout.

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

  4. rhino514 says:

    1. Gomez
    2. Eller. You´ll see what Pleks does next year with two good wingers.
    3. staubitz.
    4. If they can´t unload Kaberle before the start of next season, Gauthier should pay for tying up 4 mill plus for a specialty player with no leadership qualities. If they manage to unload Kaberle, I would be willing to wait and see wether Bourque can at least be a good third liner (which I think he probably won´t)
    No problem with Cunneyworth, though he should be able to get by in french by next season, otherwise, no. But I won´t go into that here again (p.s. I´m anglophone btw)
    5. Diaz. Good player for a bigger ice surface, but not here. If the question is, do I prefer him over Webber, Campoli, and even Kaberle (given his salary) the answer is a clear yes. Budaj is a solid number two goalie.

    Good questions

    • habstrinifan says:

      I recommended here they sign Emery last summer… if he is still available I would this summer. Mended his ways.. is cheap or was .. is expereinced..

  5. HabinBurlington says:

    If Geoff Molson announces this Summer that Jim Nill is now the GM of the Montreal Canadiens and at the same press conference a new Head Coach is announced ex. Roy. Is the fact the GM has zero relation to Montreal, Quebec or the foggiest idea what 2 words in French are negated by the hiring of Roy?

    • kempie says:

      God I hope so, but I doubt it.

    • Bill says:

      Nill is a very special case. Even the worst French media vampires would have to admit that he’s a great choice for GM, especially if the new coach is Francophone.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Hard to say but the reality is that there really wasn’t that much of an outcry after RC was hired. A handful of irrelevant people objected; a few more speculated that there would be trouble if he didn’t win (he didn’t – there wasn’t).

      20 or so people protested at one game and nobody cared.

      The whole thing lasted less than a week.

      Hockey fans don’t care.


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

  6. SmartDog says:

    It’s an awesome Saturday outside.
    So FIVE FAST EITHER/OR “if it were up to you” QUESTIONS:
    (aka: Who do you TURF?)
    ——-
    1. Molson decides to bite the bullet and park one guy in the minors next year. If it was up to you – Gomez OR Kaberle?
    2. Habs pull off a big trade for a 30+ goal scorer but to do it they need to give up either Pleks OR Eller. Which do you trade?
    3. Habs keep one of these guys for next year but let one go. Who do you let go: Moen OR Staubitz?
    4. Molson suprisingly fires one of these two but keeps the other: Gauthier OR Cunneyworth. Who gets fired?
    5. In a minor trade at the draft, one of these two guys is packaged up – who would you rather see change addresses: Diaz or Budaj.

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

    • ont fan says:

      1. Gomez 2.Pleks 3.Staubitz 4.Cunneyworth 5.Diaz

      • SmartDog says:

        At least we agree on Gomez. :)

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

        • ont fan says:

          Habinburl.. agrees with me

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Sorry to bring you down with me!

          • SmartDog says:

            Yeah, I see that.

            My take on the Gauthier-Cunneyworth quesiton is simple: Who’s going to do less damage? And who is more easily replaced? In both cases, it’s Cunneyworth. Even if you don’t like him much, he was handed a mess, and he seems to have good rappore with the players, he FINALLY started benching guys that need it (and called out Bourque which also was needed), and he’s had TWO good point-streaks – right now they’re on a six game streak. He’s doing some things right. And VERY replaceable and unlikley to do damage if things don’t get off to a good foot by November. Gauthier on the other hand could do another Kaberle trade and tie us up with another crappy contract… he seems to have not learned from Gomez. Scary.

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

        • ont fan says:

          My choice for a coach would be a guy like Dave Tippett.

    • SmartDog says:

      MY ANSWERS:
      (BTW, the way questions are phrased it all amounts to ‘who do you let go’)
      1. Gomez
      2. Eller
      3. Moen (toughest one for me – not sure Staubitz is A1 tough but at least he does a job that needs doing)
      4. Gauthier
      5. Budaj
      ————————————-
      Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Cant get myself to believe it happens, Kabs traded however.
      Pleks, contingent on 30+ being a stud, Bobby Ryan per se
      Staubitz
      Cunneyworth
      Diaz

    • neumann103 says:

      1. Molson decides to bite the bullet and park one guy in the minors next year. If it was up to you – Gomez OR Kaberle?
      Gomez. In a heartbeat.

      2. Habs pull off a big trade for a 30+ goal scorer but to do it they need to give up either Pleks OR Eller. Which do you trade?
      Nooooooooooooooooooo! My two babies! Don’t make me make this Sophie’s choice!!!!!

      3. Habs keep one of these guys for next year but let one go. Who do you let go: Moen OR Staubitz?
      Staubitz, but it is much tougher than I would have thought. I was at the game in Buffalo las week and Staubitz is a surprisingly strong and elegant skaer. He is not without skills and cold easily be a real fourth liner and not just a goon tieing up a roster spot.
      4. Molson suprisingly fires one of these two but keeps the other: Gauthier OR Cunneyworth. Who gets fired?
      Cunneyworth is gone. Gauthier should be too but I will be completely unsurprised to see him driving in from Vermont to Brossard for the opening of training camp.

      5. In a minor trade at the draft, one of these two guys is packaged up – who would you rather see change addresses: Diaz or Budaj.
      I guess I have to say Budaj since I have been a booster of Diaz since pre-season and at the time of the Auld signing two years ago I said the Habs should have chased Marty Biron (who is UFA again in 2012. Keep Diaz, sign Biron.

      “Et le but!”

    • 24 Cups says:

      1. Gomez
      2. Well I just sent Gomez to Hamilton so I guess I need both of these guys.
      3. Staubitz, hands down. He’s barely an NHL hockey player. We need Moen back now that AK is gone and Bourque is crappy.
      4. Cunneyworth
      5. Who cares, they’re both bottom spare parts who can easily be replaced in a Montreal minute.

    • jedimyrmidon says:

      1. Gomez for sure.
      2. Eller. I see Pleks as being very important in a Cup run. I’m also assuming that this 30+ goal scorer is not a 21 year old, but someone maybe 3 years younger than Pleks at the most.
      3. Staubitz. I don’t think a guy like Moen would be put on waivers if that counts for something.
      4. Difficult one. I’d say Gauthier. Cunneyworth is a good coach, but I don’t think he can get much out of the skill players with the 1-dimensional dump-and-chase strategy. At the least the Habs are more aggressive under him, but you really need a coach who can get skilled guys to produce (after a while, it’s not the players’ fault anymore).
      5. Budaj who I think is actually pretty good as a backup (good glove hand) despite the negative picture many people paint of him. But I think Diaz will be more valuable in the long run.

    • Bill says:

      1) Seriously?
      2) Eller, also obvious.
      3) Staubitz … these are very easy questions for once.
      4) Cunneyworth, easy. “Interim” coach or 2nd year GM?
      5) Doesn’t matter, but Diaz would fetch a slightly better return.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

      • HabinBurlington says:

        We aren’t getting a 30 goal scorer back for Eller, we are getting another prospect, so thus the reason I chose Plex. Also feel this team is 2 more seasons away from making a serious run.

        • Bill says:

          Yeah, but the question was, IF YOU COULD get a 30 goal scorer for either, which do you trade? In that (unlikely) scenario, I go with Eller every time.

          If you want to trade Pleks, do it when his value is higher, not after a crappy season that isn’t his fault.

          Full Breezer 4 Life

          • SmartDog says:

            I said they “need to give up one of these two guys”. If it happened for sure we’d have to give up more (a high draft pick or another valuable guy you would think at least). but for the question that’s not important. Point is the other team wants a center and will take either of these guys (our choice).

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

      • SmartDog says:

        - The problem with letting Staubitz go is we’re back to having PK and White do our fighting. I like Moen but think a Staubitz-like guy is needed and he seems ‘okay’.
        – The problem with letting Cunneyworth go and not Gauthier is if a house cleaning is needed (and most people agree it is), you gotta let the Goat go and Cunneyworth is easily replaced once the new GM finds his feet, if he doesn’t seem to be getting the W’s.

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

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Well in that case you should of worded the questions to allow for all that! ;-)

          • SmartDog says:

            Well, I intended these questions to be a bit trickier if you went past the surface. But I can’t do ALL the work for ya! :P

            It’s not just about who’s better or who you like (or hate) more. I mean Moen is better than Staubitz but how long have we needed a Staubitz and not had one…. trading Eller over Pleks seems like a no-brainer UNLESS you think Eller is just coming into his own and Pleks in on the decline. (Though I wouldn’t trade Pleks – I have faith in the turtleneck and think he’s not a very replaceable player for all he brings.)

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

          • ont fan says:

            I went with Moen because he is harder to replace. Eller because he is younger and has nothing but upside for the next few years when they get better. I would replace Gautier and let the new guy pick the coach but this was an either or question.

        • Bill says:

          Ok, I just don’t think we need a Staubitz. Most enforcers fight, what, maybe 20 times a year? Once every four games? Who’s doing the fighting in the other three games? Why does someone have to fight? Who is doing the fighting for Detroit?

          Second, I don’t think a “housecleaning” is needed and in fact I think that could be a dangerous knee-jerk reaction to a season that has been killed mostly by injuries. If someone wants to make Gauthier the fall guy for the injuries, ok, but I like a lot of the moves he’s made and I am too reasonable a soul to think the Habs should have achieved more/better with the number of man-games they’ve lost this year.

          I like Cole. I like Eller. I like Emelin. I like Kaberle better than Spacek, at least. I like locking up Gorges. I’m not crazy about Bourque, but it’s not a horrendous deal. If Gauthier can nail down long-term contracts for Subban, Pacioretty, and Price, get a decent LW, and a steady D-man, I’m happy with him.

          Full Breezer 4 Life

          • Bertuzzi says:

            I agree, mostly.

            Kaberle receives a lot of hate around here, but he’s not that bad.

            Likewise Gauthier. He can’t be blamed for all of Montreal’s injuries this year and most of his deals have pretty decent, in my opinion. He dumped Camalleri and Kostitsyn just when I thought he should, and JM. Liked the Eller trade. And so on.

            A complete house-cleaning is not necessary.

            Montreal does need a fighter, though. We saw this season what a difference the presence of White makes. Whether he fights or not is irrelevant. His presence gives all the players a swagger and everyone plays a bit tougher. For psychological reasons, a hockey team absolutely needs a goon.

          • SmartDog says:

            You’re one of the only defenders of Gauthier. I respect that (though I disagree) because I get your reasoning and I’m surprised more haven’t said it. It’s partly in how you assess our situation and record. But without going into that… for me, to be a GM at this level you can’t make a lot of mistakes. It’s not about what he’s done right (some of which fell in his lap – I mean credit for signing Gorges? The guy wanted to sign here and could’ve been had for less. Emelin? I’ve heard him talk about his decision to come and he’s never mentioned Gauthier.) But even if you do give ‘credit’ for that stuff I think under Gauthier the Habs have a poor record for assessing talent in trades and he hasn’t done a single player trade that looks GREAT on our end. On the other hand, flip it around and other teams have gotten great deals from us. And third, he’s too slow to address obvious needs. I mean last fall he’s saying we need to get bigger and tougher? Duh-uh…. When the average HIOer is years before your GM, you got a real problem.

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

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      1. Molson decides to bite the bullet and park one guy in the minors next year. If it was up to you – Gomez OR Kaberle?
      Gomez. Not even close. But both may stay.

      2. Habs pull off a big trade for a 30+ goal scorer but to do it they need to give up either Pleks OR Eller. Which do you trade?
      Well they won’t IMO, but Pleks will yield a far bigger return, and since we won’t be competitive anyway for another few years, I say trade Pleks.

      3. Habs keep one of these guys for next year but let one go. Who do you let go: Moen OR Staubitz?
      Rusty, but we’d need another somewhat like him.

      4. Molson suprisingly fires one of these two but keeps the other: Gauthier OR Cunneyworth. Who gets fired?
      Hmmm … Cunneyworth … because a coach deals with the team daily.

      5. In a minor trade at the draft, one of these two guys is packaged up – who would you rather see change addresses: Diaz or Budaj.
      I guess Diaz although I like him. To me this is more or less true in that they’re all lightweights and we can afford to give up one or more –> Diaz=Webber=St Denis=Campoli=Kaberle.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      1. Obviously Gomez.
      2. Eller unfortunately.
      3. Not even close – Staubitz goes.
      4. Cunneyworth is already fired.
      5. Diaz has potential, so Budaj.


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

    • habstrinifan says:

      1-Gomez
      2-Eller(u worded this as if the main ‘give-back’ would be Eller or Pleks and so it’s reallyunfair to Eller… what els eis included?)
      3-Staubitz
      4-Gauthier… RC could be part of coaching staff. PG can’t be part of
      GM staff.
      5-Diaz.

  7. 24 Cups says:

    A game between Carolina and Minnesota would never garner a mention on HI/O – until today. These two teams are in direct competition with Montreal for a high end draft pick. Doesn’t really matter who wins as long as it goes into overtime.

  8. Bertuzzi says:

    By the way, who are we cheering for in the playoffs?

  9. HABSGUARDIANANGEL says:

    anyone got a link for the impact game

  10. otter649 says:

    March 17, 1955 Red Fisher first day on the job ? Never to be forgotten…..

  11. Dr.Rex says:

    Hiring Pierre McGuire would be very similar to the Detroit Lions hiring Matt Millen a decade ago. A few similarities.
    – The Lions were begining to struggle and lose some interest from their fan base when they made the move.
    – Matt Millen was very knowledgeable in the booth and had a very strong opinion about certain management teams. (Raiders, Niners)
    – Many in Detroit complained about the secrecy of moves at the time and the lack of drastic moves made (providing Sanders with a elite QB)
    – Many thought at the time in Detroit that a charasmatic and flamboyant GM would change the culture and dynamics of the team.

    RESULT: Detroit beccame the laughing stock of the NFL due to poor drafting and unneeded bad publicity. This resulted in years of misery which climaxed with a 0-16 season.

    ASK YOURSELF HAB FANS……….IS this what we really want. McGuire will destroy the last 100 years in no time at all.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      That is a very good analogy.

    • habstrinifan says:

      -100 (yrs).

      There was a doctor named Rex
      Who exaggerated to the vex
      Go to him with symptoms gastric
      And he would take out your appendix.

    • avi says:

      I think Montreal should hire someone high up either working in Detroit, Boston, Chicago, or Vancouver. I thought McGuire might be the obvious choice but now I’m thinking Molson should probably hire someone from a team with a recent WINNING track record.

    • doogie says:

      All true Dr. Rex, as a Lions diehard fan, they were a brutally bad team from the very top of the organization. Couldn’t put the brain trust in place at the President, Managerial positions……so now with Tom Lewand running the show; then hiring Martin Mayhew; signing Jim Schwartz as the head coach…..now they’re a legit NFL franchise with a great future. And it’s been a long time!

      Habs need to develop a similar blueprint, have MR. Molson turn over the hockey operations to the best hockey mind in the business at whatever cost and opportunity and then let him develop the GM and coaching moves. Not sure who it is but I’m sure there are the “right” people out there in the NHL. Jim Nill from Detroit, who’s ready to run his own show? I don’t have the answers but please sweep the broom through the front office in a month’s time!

      * * * * * * *

      Need to get my clubs ready for the golf season since there ain’t gonna be any playoffs!

    • RockinRey says:

      Nope !! Not seeing it pal. Not even close in the analogy. I think MCGuire has a greater handle on managing assets than Gainey or the Goat does.

      • Bill says:

        You may believe that, but what do you base it on? Not his track record as a GM, clearly. Is it based on what he says on TV? Because what he says on TV gives me nightmares when I think of being a GM of the team I follow.

        Full Breezer 4 Life

    • ont fan says:

      You hit the nail on the head. That was misery alright. 0 for 24 on the road. Never won a road game in 3 years.

  12. FanCritic says:

    Instead of bringing in deadwood the Habs gotta start bringing in junior players that’s good enough to make the NHL other teams are doing it and the young guys are doing great. the guys in Edmonton don’t look out of place, skinner in Carolina don’t look out of place and there’s others. just because they go to the AHL don’t mean they’re gonna be NHL players. we’ve tried that, a couple yes the rest not looking good. if they can make the NHL out of junior, I say bring Em on. enough of this picking up other teams cast offs and getting the same results every year. no offence towards Cole he’s great. that was a good move and I don’t mind those kind of moves. if we could make moves like that all the time we would have a great team….

    • Bill says:

      Wait … so you’re saying … the Habs just need to get players who are good enough to make the NHL straight out of junior? They should get guys like Skinner, Hall, Eberle, and RNH?

      That’s a great idea! Why haven’t the Habs done this??

      FIRE GAUTHIER FIRE GAUTHIER FIRE GAUTHIER

      Full Breezer 4 Life

    • habstrinifan says:

      I post not as a critic
      Of the sageness of FanCritic
      For the cougars doth too forsake deadwood
      And go for the young saplings that could.

  13. HardHabits says:

    Here’s a little something to brighten your day. I know it is wrong to laugh at others misfortune but this goes beyond the level of retardedness we’re normally accustomed to seeing on the Internet.

    Maybe HiB can explain to us what’s going on here.

    • kempie says:

      I can’t figure out why they didn’t try dousing it with gasoline and lighting it first. Seems like an obvious choice. Somewhere, Darwin is smiling.

  14. neumann103 says:

    While I am all in favour of using the last meaningless games of the season to evaluate and develop kids, there is no way professionals should be expected to lose or relent on compete level. With every game, each player should be making a statement about his role in the future of the team.

    I can’t cheer for a loss, although really in a game last night, the OT loss does not burn more than a little.

    The Habs are unlikely to have a shot at Yakupov. Grigonrenko looks like the right choice but with some risk. In the end, I don’t really see “falling” to 6th or so and having a shot at Forsberg or Faksa as that bad an outcome and if if comes on the heels of a late season streak and some good experience for prospects, so much the better.

    “Et le but!”

  15. naweed235 says:

    there is probably not many football fans here, but does anyone know if there is an online feed of the Impact’s game today?

  16. HabinBurlington says:

    Reading this article from a Bruin Blogger explaining how bad the Bruins have been since Vancouver beat them 33 games ago, may have just made my day.

    http://www.hockeybuzz.com/blog/Ty-Anderson/The-Vancouver-Canucks-broke-the-Boston-Bruins/141/43132

    • issie74 says:

      No McGuire for GM,I have listened to him from the draft floor and he is so often wrong.
      Luke Schenn ‘Get excited Toronto,this is an excellent pick”
      Cary Price “The Canadians don’t need a goaltender”
      Just to name two misses,look at last years Toronto pick,Habs should have taken him over Beaulieu, why has everyone passed on him.if indeed he is so qualified.

      LOL

      NorthTOHab

      • Bill says:

        He seems like he just makes up his mind based on some fantasy, then commits to his belief with all the energy of a jihadist. Even a boob like me knew Beaulieu was an excellent pick. And Price certainly fit the bill of “best player available”. The guy is radioactive as far as I’m concerned.

        Full Breezer 4 Life

      • otter649 says:

        McGuire kept talking about Pacs being the next Mike McPhee – Don’t think so…….

        • Bill says:

          Well, as you know, McGuire has an Encyclopaedic Knowledge of all NHL players AND prospects, so Max should be turning into Mike McPhee any day now :)

          The guy is basically infallible, right?

          Full Breezer 4 Life

          • otter649 says:

            Still waiting for #81 Orlov (sp) of The Caps to become a better defenceman than Sergie Zubov (NHL’s highest scoring Russian dman of all time?) which is another McGuire prediction that I don’t see happening but heard him talking about quite abit in the past but not recently……lol

        • issie74 says:

          I like Patches just the way he is and McGuire should stop trying to compare anybody.

          NorthTOHab

  17. mjames says:

    Mike Boone’s comments are laughable . I seriously question whether he in fact watches the Canadiens play. He is certainly no hockey “pundit”. He refers to Kostsign and Pouliot as stiffs. Well if he is honest he would state that both these “stiffs” are better than any of the stiffs we currently have, with the exception of MaxPac and Cole.

    His comment on Geoffrion is. He implies the Geoffrion’s skill set might be close to that of his grand father. Have you watcvhed this kid play? I seriously question whether the younger Geoffrion is from the same gene pool as his grandfather. To be quite frank the younger Geoffrrion’s gene pool is closer to that of the Zamboni driver or that famous stand-in, the milkman.

    mjames

    • athanor says:

      He doesn’t imply anything of the sort with Geoffrion. He’s just a step from calling Geoffrion’s gene pool a puddle.

    • issie74 says:

      Pundits need to leave this kid alone.He is not Bernie,nor Howie.Very unfair to expect that.JMO

      NorthTOHab

    • habstrinifan says:

      Phooey says Mjames to the Booner’s wit
      Refutes the pundit as a twit
      How dare he doth call the Kostis puss piss
      Yet applauds young Geoffrion’s pedigree-ness
      And much like a scribbler for Esquire
      Mjames cuckolds Blake’s dad with the Zamboni driver.

    • 24 Cups says:

      mjames – Your interpretation of Mike Boone’s alleged implication is totally erroneous. He only mentioned that Blake Geoffrion had the same blood lines, which of course is true. Nobody in their right mind would compare him to Boom Boom.

      Speaking of the truth, I think most posters would have to agree that AK46 and Pouliot were both big disappointments in terms of their tenure in Montreal. Pouliot is undoubtedly a stiff, while Andrei has been a half-miler ever since he was drafted.

      As for MB’s ability to be a Hab pundit, I would only answer by stating that he attends every practice and game in Montreal, watches every road game on TV and is the only person on HI/O (along with other Gazette staff) to have access to the players. If anyone on this site thinks they know more about the team then Mike does, let them step forward or forever hold their peace.

  18. HabinBurlington says:

    The Globe provides a detailed story of perhaps Graham James first victim. How this creep James was ever pardoned or released is beyond me. Have great empathy for what young men like this have had to go through, just truly sad.

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/hockey/graham-jamess-alleged-first-victim-finally-has-his-say/article2372297/page1/

  19. 100HABS says:

    Just two points behind the Make-Believes! To maintain at least a modicum of respect, it would be good to at least beat Toronna. Then win the lottery and move ahead of them in the draft…

  20. LafleurGuy says:

    About GM candidates, as with other jobs, a model of success would be an individual who lives and breathes the sport with zealous passion and unfortunately someone who often places family and personal life second. Using Brian Burke as an example, he has acquired diverse interests compared to when he was a younger GM. He was Team USA’s GM whereas Hockey Canada used Steve Yzerman for the Vancouver Olympics. Mr. Burke has other laudable causes that he speaks out publicly. It has been years since he perform his job as a Swedish to English translator (“Sedin does not mean go ahead and cross-check me in the back of my head”). This last job he did better than Lars Eller did the other day. Therefore, as unpopular as this potential candidate is, I think the non-member of Hair Club for Men is a viable choice.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

    • LafleurGuy says:

      P.S. Just a thought, maybe to last year’s involved referees, they thought “Sedin” is Swedish for “Go ahead and rabbit punch me with a gloved hand.”

      “May you live in interesting times”

  21. DorvalTony says:

    People were joking about the Catholic church asking for prayers for the Canadiens, check this Leafs item out: http://blog.mapleleafs.com/cardinal-dons-leafs-sweater-at-vatican/

    Thank you Bob Gainey. Thank you Pierre Gauthier.

  22. ed lopaz says:

    got a chance to watch Radek Faksa of Kitchener last night.

    his skating is very fluid, smother than I thought, his speed and mobility are excellent for a guy who is expected to play at the NHL level at about 215 lbs.

    He is listed on the OHL network as 6’3, 202 lbs.

    he reminds me of a younger Paul Stastny type, but taller obviously.

    strong on his skates, 3 zone coverage, tough when he has to be.

    unselfish, hard working, mobile.

    really the whole package.

    I’m hoping to watch the Rangers in the playoffs and get a longer range idea of what Faksa can do.

    • HabFab says:

      Definitely a good choice if we end up drafting 8-10th. Thanks for the scouting report Ed.

    • habstrinifan says:

      Thank you Ed.. I like this choce too and I think he may be able to crack line-up. sooner than some rated higher.

    • kempie says:

      Thanks for that. I’ve been wanting to see this guy for a while now. When I picture this team picking in the range of #4 to #6, Faksa looks very interesting. Keep us posted if you can.

    • Bill says:

      I think his stock has been rising so fast that you’re right, he’ll be gone by 8th. So many teams are looking for good forwards, and there is no real consensus, it seems, on much of anything after Yakupov.

      If the Habs are picking third, maybe they can get Grigorenko.

      If it’s more like 4th-5th, maybe Forsberg.

      If it’s 6th-7th, maybe Faksa.

      But if the Habs are picking 8th-10th and all the forwards are gone, that seems like a great opportunity to snag one of the good D prospects to me. Looks like there is some high-end talent on the blueline that could slip down if the rest of the teams go for the forwards.

      Anyone who thinks the Habs couldn’t use another great D in the pipeline is probably overestimating guys like Tinordi, Ellis, Pateryn, Bennet, et al. A lot of posters seem to regard them as money in the bank: they aren’t.

      The only sure-bet the Habs have developing on D is Beaulieu. After that, it’s a crapshoot. I’d love to see another top-ten D-pick and hope for the best.

      But either way, good forward or good D, I’m happy. Either will help the team a lot down the road.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

  23. HabsFansince49 says:

    I expect Molson will wait until the season end to fire Pierre Gauthier. Even then, regardless of who takes over, he has one major mess on his hands: a few skilled players, excellent goalie but far too many players who would not make the 4th line of an AHL team (e.g. Bourque, Gomez, Kaberle) and a bunch of young guys who may or may not make the big show.
    I watched that game last night and witnessed 6 shots on goal in 2nd & 3rd periods. I don’t accept the tanking theory. It’s a rationale for a rotten team. Plus RC’s system not unlike JM’s of dumping the puck out of our zone especially when we have a 1 goal lead (first period) smacks of ice pond or backyard hockey.

  24. LafleurGuy says:

    Some stats, Goals For — Goalls Against

    2012 — 2.76 — 2.78

    2011 — 2.63 — 2.55

    We’re scoring more this year despite an ineffective PP. Pricey is solid so clearly the major drop-off is our defensive play. No mystery there when you have a defence corps that replaced Hamrlik, Wizniewski, Spacek, and recently, Hal Gill. Our 2 top goal scorers last year were Captain Brian (29G) and Pleks (22G). This year Max P (30G and counting, and Eric the High Fiver (27G and counting) are the 2 top goal scorers. Wouldn’t it be great if these 4 lead players scored more than 20 goals each next year. Also, I think both Louis Leblanc and Ryan White may perform better at center position; worth a try.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

    • Led says:

      You need to compare us to the rest of the league, this year!

      We are 18th in goals scored per game. Within our conference it is worse, we are 12th (out of 15).

      In goals allowed per game we are 16th overall. However, we are 5th best in the east.

      In addition we have been top ten in shots allowed per game all season long (higher under Martin). Our PK has been league best all year.

      Our problems are goalscoring and our pathetic powerplay.

  25. habstrinifan says:

    Yesterday saw a post linking to article on candidates out there for GM vancancies. None seem to meet the major requirement that the habs should have as one noteworthy but seemingly despised candidate.

    Major requirement for habs GM. Knowledge.. knowledge/insight on all players from all leagues at all leavels.

    Candidate…. do I need to say the name? Be honest doesnt it mean that if you are thinking the same person that I am then you are admitting his qualification in this aspect.

    • Mark C says:

      No, it just means that there are many foolish posters who consistently bring his name into the debate.

      All qualified candidates know as much, and in most cases more than that bald headed front-runner.

      • habstrinifan says:

        I wonder who you mean? Never noticed he was bald. I judge a person more on whats below the skull than on top the skull.

        Just having fun with you here Mark C .. so dont get too upset.

    • HabFab says:

      Please don’t say “that” name…see HiB’s link below for much better candidates!

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      I think McGuire would make a great GM. His knowledge of hockey and especially prospects is pretty much unmatched.

      And I think it is time Montreal puts an outspoken GM behind the wheel and a bull buster of a coach behind the bench.

      I’d be totally cool with McGuire upstairs and a hard ass coach behind the bench. I wouldn’t be apposed to having Cunneyworth back next year to see what he can do from training camp. It was nice to see him tear a strip off Campoli last night.

      • habstrinifan says:

        Not RC. His coaching is too one-dimensional but I like his one-on-one coaching communication. Direct and honest and earnest. I have sense players like that too… but what do I know? I just cant live through a season of dump and chase and ‘JM-LITE’ defensive lock-down as he did around the start of period 2.

      • Mark C says:

        Can you explain it to me like I’m 5, how he somehow knows more about hockey and prospects than actual Assistant G.M.’s, Director’s of Hockey Opps, and Scouting Director’s?

        He clearly knows a lot, and I don’t really want to put him down, but for the life of me, I cannot understand how it’s now a fact he knows more than the Nill’s, BriseBois’, Botterill’s, Timmins’, and Loiselle’s of the hockey world.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Mike Milbury? PJ Stock? who are we talking about…. hehe

    • Malreg says:

      Just because we don’t hear every other candidate on the radio and TV ever night spouting random facts about who a certain players Novice coach was, does not mean they aren’t as knowledgeable as this certain person.

      I’ll take someone who has been in management for the last 10 years in the NHL over someone that has been in a broadcast booth for 15 years.

    • Bill says:

      No, I know who you are talking about because I read the same article as you.

      He hasn’t worked in the NHL for a million years. He develops ridiculous obsessions with players and consistently overrates bad ones: remember his comment about Toronto’s “Big Three”? How would you like to have a GM who wanted to provide the Habs with a similar group? Remember when he said the Habs should pick Gilbert Brule? You want this guy running your draft table?

      Full Breezer 4 Life

      • Caper says:

        Hey Bill. Alot of people forget he said pick Brule. I couldn’t stand the guy however he knows hockey and hangs out with the best of them. Serge Savard went to 3 Stanley Cup finals and won 2 Cups. He made some brutal trades (Chelios) and horroble draft picks in the first round. We could do worse than mcGuire. The other name out there is Marc Bergevin in Chicago.

      • issie74 says:

        +1

        all Toronto picks are better than Habs “Burke just gets it” PMG’s words.

        NorthTOHab

  26. DorvalTony says:

    Another horror show from Christopher Lee.

  27. HabinBurlington says:

    If the guy at the top of this list of Potential GM’s could speak french, perhaps we would be the beneficiary of some NHL Head Office decisions.

    http://www.usatoday.com/sports/hockey/columnist/allen/story/2012-03-15/nhl-general-manager-candidates/53562872/1

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      I think they need to hire family members of Bettman, Shannahan, and Campbell.

      “Fool Proof Plan™”

    • HabFab says:

      Number 3 and 9 have my interest.

      • Jim Edson says:

        Exactly!

        ———————————————————————-
        What does the Commissioner of the NHL do?

        In short, a league commissioner is the action man for the Board of Governors.

        They tell him what they want done and he works to make it happen through his subordinates while making sure that individual franchises play by the rules.

        ******** Translated if you haven’t won the Stanley Cup in 40 years your NHL team is becoming irrelevant in a sports mad city long behind MLB, NFL and NBA teams, you just tell the commissioner(who you gave a new contract at 7 plus million per) to make it happen and the rules are bent sufficiently to action the command.

  28. HabinBurlington says:

    NHL Head Office getting involved in the Tank Games. Suspends Carolina Hurricanes Jeff Skinner 2 games.

  29. New says:

    I was just wondering. Is there anywhere that has a list of the final scores, penalties, against the ref’s names? It would be great for sports betting.

  30. habstrinifan says:

    Some thoughts:

    #1.. Trading Pleks (I used to be ok with it) will be a mistake. We woould create too big a hole in the line-up. Better to get a ‘shooter’ and a big winger for him and let him loose offensively.. ease his P.K duties. It would take 3 more years to develop a player to where he is now.

    Cunneyworth’s dump and chase (and that is his game strategy period.) is going to wear dow Pacs and Cole during a full season. If this strategy is employed next season expect further injuries.. and no significant team upgrade.

    Eller who has Pacs/Cole size just does not do well in this system. He is having a hard time and looks like another skilled forward we are mis-applying/developing unless we have more imgainative coaching.

    White has to be coached into a 3rd/4th liner role and more away from the ‘fighter’ role… else we’ll lose him too.

    If I had to keep Campoli or Weber… it would be Campoli.

    Why wasnt Geoffrion dressed? Has he been returned.
    I didnt even notice Palushaj.

    Granted the game was weird (HABS lived in the BOX) and there were lots missing but RC is coaching by overusing some resources and not engaing a game strategy for others.

    Biggest observation though and this is why we need a very very able GM. Habs season next year will depend not so much on who we ACQUIRE but who we get RID OF. Management should already have a list of players who will have played their last game in MTL when this season ends.

    To use PG’s analogy. Strip the house to the frame. Re-attach the good solid parts. Clear away the debris. Re-assess and then go shopping.

    • Old Bald Bird says:

      The trouble is that probably the only way to obtain a big winger and a shooter for Pleks is to trade Pleks himself as he seems to be the only guy who might bring us good value.

      • habstrinifan says:

        True but unless we hit a Cole type home-run on those acquisitions we are …. geeez just plain too hard to solve. Glad I aint/wont be the GM. Gladdest if PG aint/wont be the GM.

  31. LafleurGuy says:

    Storm clouds gathering for next year’s team. The CBA is potentially headed for a work stoppage (see NBA). Then, the contract negotiations for Price (probably repressing true feelings about his salary compared to his peers), P.K. (see Price’s true feelings), and Max-P (phenomenal breakout year) are going to be tough business.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  32. ont fan says:

    Heard Galchenyuk got hurt last night after 2 games back with Sarnia.

  33. HabFab says:

    A large salary cap increase of $5,000,000 would also raise the Salary Cap Floor making Gomez a Salary Cap bargain for teams needing to acquire Cap without acquiring the matching salary;

    2012-2013 $7,357,143 Cap $5,500,000 Actual
    2013-2014 $7,357,143 Cap $4,500,000 Actual

    • Captain aHab says:

      Until Gomez is actually traded, I’ll continue to believe that these teams will prefer to give a bit more salary to promising young players than bring in a stiff like Scotty to reach the floor. And yes I do realize they would pay actual fewer dollars with Scott to reach the floor.

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

      • HabFab says:

        We may have to take back something in return like in the Cammy trade, half the price for similar results.

      • Mark C says:

        There are a few reasons:

        1) Gomez would save a team $4.5M in real dollars over the next two years.
        2) Gomez offers a short-term fix, while overpaying younger players on long-term contract could create issues down the road.
        3) Management/teams may feel that overpaying young players might lead to a lack of effect.

        This isn’t to say, Montreal can find a taker for Gomez, just that there are legitimate reasons a team might rather have Gomez than overpay young players.

    • LafleurGuy says:

      Thanks HabFab for a recent update on the NCAA Hockey March Madness. Unreal that North Dakota scored SIX goals in the third period in a comeback victory!

      “May you live in interesting times.”

    • HabinBurlington says:

      How come only us Hab fans see the benefit of Scott Gomez to other teams? :)

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        I seriously think he plays really good in a 3rd line role on the wing. Young guys always mention him in interviews. If he made Travis Moen money everybody would welcome him back to the 3rd line with Eller.

        If I owned the team I would not “eat his salary.” That is insane, expecting a business owner to throw away money like that. Never going to happen.

        As for value, he gives full effort (most times all for nothing) I would assume he is VERY well liked by his team-mates (who go out of their way to mention/defend him). He is GROSSLY overpaid, but that has been known for years.

        I agree that there is value for a low budget team that is losing money, maybe not next year, but definitely the following year where a budget team can save $3mill in payroll.

    • matt jordan says:

      Please oh please. Gomez would make such a good NYI

      I’m hoping for the amnesty clause of the next CBA.

      Anything to get rid of Gomez

  34. HabFab says:

    Interesting with the talk of the Salary Cap going up $5,000,000. This would ease the financial pain of a Gomez buy out drastically. His buy out of $3.5 ml would leave $3.8 ml plus the additional $5 ml to play with.

    Scott Gomez buyout from CapGeek.com

    2012-13: $3,523,810
    2013-14: $4,523,810
    2014-15: $1,666,667
    2015-16: $1,666,667

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      Better off keeping Gomez, there are no UFAs this year, he actually doesn’t play too bad on the 3rd-4th line on the wing.

      • Habfan10912 says:

        Sorry sir got to disagree. Gomez should not get a sniff of the locker room next year. Its over.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        People will not want to hear that, but indeed you may be correct. He is a better skater than most on this team and despite his inability to live up to his contract, he is indeed an NHL level player. Given there is no obvious upgrades through UFA, we may be best playing one more year with him. Given the different cap changes this coming year, he may yet become tradeable.

        That cap floor going up by 5 million will have big implications for a number of teams.

        • ont fan says:

          Tradeable or not..there is no one who is good enough to beat him out of a spot on the team..I wished there was.

        • habstrinifan says:

          Having listed his up-side you still end up having to acknowledge that with Gomez on the bench you will have the problem of having a ‘huge resource that does not produce’. It’s like having a big-rep designated who isnt hitting home-runs.

      • Stuck_in_To. says:

        You might be right horse-flesh-wise, but I cannot shake the feeling that a large part of the funk in the Mtl. dressing room this season was caused by the presence of Gomez and Martin both of whom should have been dealt with at the end of last season. I’m not accusing either man any particular action but their mere presence indicated a problem with organizational direction. And I cannot see how staying with the Habs is going to help Gomez’s career … unless he has ended it here and, if that is the case, then staying on would just be abusing life support.

  35. Mr_MacDougall says:

    I know this will make some people furious, but I think that Pleks deserves to play with the teams top wingers for the rest of the season. Give the guy a break. Doesn’t he have some seniority over DD? Wouldn’t it be useful to see how DD can play with Bourque and (insert AHL winger here).

    • LafleurGuy says:

      Desharnais, Eller, Nokelainen are inferior to Tomas defensively, so in games where the ice is tilted to the Canadiens end the shots differential would be worse. Plekanec is horse-collared with a terrible +/-, but I credit him with taking this for the team. The only other dependable defensive center, and you’re gonna love this, is Scott Gomez. Apologies if this comment wakes up the teenager.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        Would it be unreasonable to “test” Eller in the teams number one defensive role, while giving Pleks a rest from his “workhorse” duties in a 10 game stretch that is all but meaningless? Also, see if DD can get anything out of Bourque. just a thought, Pleks is getting the shaft IMO.

    • Stuck_in_To. says:

      I don’t disagree in theory but would rather see Lars Eller get the top two wingers for the good of his development. I think your sentiment points to the fact that our top 3 centers (DD, Pleks and Eller) all show the same level of game: I’d love them all on the 2nd line but can live with them on the first given the right support. Caveat: I know I am getting ahead on assessing Eller but I am bullish on his development. The real problem with this is that Louis Leblanc is coming along with similar potential. Of the four, Pleks plays the 3rd line shutdown role best while I think Eller might actually have more upside in the O zone. Nice for the Habs to have more useful parts than they might be able to effectively employ.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        I tend to agree with most of what you say.. But Pleks had by far the best offensive season(s) of any center currently on the team.. what about testing Eller as the “shut-down” center.. and Pleks as the number one offensive center.. just to mix things up. See what Plek can do with Cole and Patch, it would be fun for him!

  36. HabFanSince72 says:

    Looking at the team, half our current roster is just not good enough. Not that they can’t play in the NHL, but they should be emergency call-ups not regulars. And there is no one in Hamilton who could play in the NHL.

    Years and years of trading away decent players for nothing has brought us to this point.

    We will suck again next year. We aren’t a few tweaks away from contending.

    The Monday after the end of the regular season everyone in management except Trevor Timmins and his staff need to be fired.


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

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      I found myself wondering when Darche, Gomez, and Moen would return.. If a fan is wondering when Darche is returning, the team has to be AWFUL up front.

      • matt jordan says:

        Ya the Habs are really bad… They started the season and managed to grab last place in the east in a hurry. At the Canadiens best point in the season, the lofty heights of 11th and a full game over 500, they fired the coach.

        Gauthier apologists seem to think injuries are the reason this team is bad. If only Gomez and Darche were here, everything would be different!

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I have to agree 72. Although I think we get better next year with Markov and Gionta, its probably not enough for the team to contend but I think we could be in a play-off fight. We have some potential dman in the pipe and a few forwards who could develop down the road but this draft and next years draft will set the tone for the next decade. The base of PK, Parches, and Price isn’t bad to build around don’t ya think?

    • Malreg says:

      There’s not much in Hamilton this year, but it’s just a bad transition year for them.

      They’ll be a much better team next year with Tinordi, Beaulieu, Gallagher, Holland, Bournival, Ellis, along with potentially Kristo coming over from NCAA.

  37. Mr_MacDougall says:

    How about those Jets? Best fans in the League this season.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Absolutely!

    • Whoa!

      Maybe this year, but when the old Jets were around, I got to experience first hand what kind of fans they were. Win and they were in. The new generation are real Jets fans. I hope they get into the playoffs so I can wear my Price jersey to their games :)

      OT
      Sad day in hockey here.

      My son’s team is done. Lost in the city semi finals.

      Backyard rink will be taken down today, bummer.

      Good news. Soccer and baseball season starts in earlier this year :lol: Takes the sting away at how early the Habs were knocked out.

      They Call Me Shane
      “They never asked to be Canadiens, they were Chosen.”
      Shane Oliver
      Twitter @Sholi2000
      http://www.Sholi2000.com
      Custom Sports Figures

      • LafleurGuy says:

        Feel bad for your young lad. Isn’t it around 21 degrees in the ‘Peg?

        “May you live in interesting times.”

      • HabFab says:

        Tell him
        “It is better to have played and lost,
        then to have never played at all.
        Enjoy and remember this moment for the rest of your lives!”

        A coach from my youth giving us kids council after losing the Provincial Championship in O/T.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Shane I don’t know what date exactly you moved to Manitoba, but they indeed had great fans in the 70s (WHA) and throughout the 80’s. But then Barry Shenkarow began playing the role of Jeffrey Loria in how he treated the Jets, the fans and the city officials. He began making unrealistic conditions in order to keep the team in wpg all the while threatening to move them. Add to that the dollar as it compared to the US and the team was doomed and the fans knew it.

        Back when Hawerchuck, Maclean and Mullen provided excellent first line scoring with Thomas Steen Doug Smail and other providing a great 3rd line that team had great support. Even while we watched John Ferguson trade Dave Babych for Ray (THe original hands of stone) Neufeld, the fans supported the team.

        I think the fans of Winnipeg deserve a mulligan from you, afterall they aren’t Leaf Fans!!!!

        Sorry about your kids season being over, good luck to him this summer, glad to hear you have the kid playing a few different sports. I feel bad for many of todays hockey kids that they only play hockey 12 months a year. I think getting other sports in the offseason is a unique and invaluable help.

        • I was posted from 90-04. I definitely saw the worst of the worst Jets era.

          Mind you Teemu’s magical season was something I’ll never forget.

          Son;

          It’s a great feeling watching your kids play sports, dance and ballet (did I just say that lol). Life is Great!

          They Call Me Shane
          “They never asked to be Canadiens, they were Chosen.”
          Shane Oliver
          Twitter @Sholi2000
          http://www.Sholi2000.com
          Custom Sports Figures

      • habstrinifan says:

        Hit he books kid!

        Maybe you can become a capologist and get a big time cushy job. And oh yes solve the Gomez issue. Ate ryou do that then you can tackle the small stuff like mid-east peace.

        What’s that you say? Shut up old geezer! Spoiled brat… go do some yard work.

    • LafleurGuy says:

      The team that lost Ilya Kovalchuk, is playing heads above last year’s edition in Atlanta, and this is all a credit to the fans who cram into a 15,000 seat arena.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

  38. HabFanSince72 says:

    The suggestion that Tavares should get the MVP is surprising to say the least.

    His team is dead last in the conference, and has been around there for the entire season.

    There are only two candidates: Malkin and Stamkos. If it isn’t one of those two I’ll take a picture of myself in a Tim Thomas Bruins jersey and post it on the Internet.


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

    • HabinBurlington says:

      King Richard in New York looks forward to seeing the picture ;-)

      • HabFanSince72 says:

        Lundquist might deserve it but a keeper will not get the Hart unless he’s perceived to be on an otherwise very poor team (like Theo in 2002).


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

    • TomNickle says:

      As a matter of fact they haven’t been in the basement all season. They’ve been as high as 9th in the Eastern Conference and just recently dipped into last for the first time all season long if I’m not mistaken.

      Tavares is 3rd in the NHL in takeaways, has a faceoff percentage above 50% and is 8th in league scoring and accounts for 42% of his team’s offense.

      He plays in every situation and has excelled. I also pointed out below that of the elite players in the game he’s probably the slowest of foot which speaks volumes about his positioning. Something to take note of for such a young player.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        MVP is described as most valuable to his team. So without Tavares NYI would fall from last to…. last? I think a pre-requisite for MVP is being on a playoff team. No doubt that this has been a great season for JT, not even close to MVP caliber.

        As for his speed, that is what analysts say he has most improved, to the point of being an above average skater. (Mallard, Kipper, MacLean on Hockey Central).

        • TomNickle says:

          I’m very sorry for you if Rogers Sportsnet and those three specific gentlemen are the places from which you draw your conclusions about hockey players.

  39. LafleurGuy says:

    A 21 year old playing like Erik Karlsson does is astounding. Never been a fan of the Senators, but I’m a fan of this player like I was with Raymond Bourque (Bruins suck!). Karlsson may become this generation’s Niklas Lidstrom.

    P.K. and Chris Campoli, and I would add Mike Blunden’s name, were the only Canadiens who skated with any zip. P.K. resembled Guy Lapointe, whereas Campoli looked like Gaston Gingras.

    I think both Eric Cole and Max Pacioretty were slowed by heavy hits, Cole’s was at the end of the third period of the previous game, and Max-P’s was the first period head shot he took from Michalek. Explains why these guys don’t have any thoughts about sparing the opponent a potential severe injury (see Myers vs. Gomez).

    Mike Blunden is returning from recent surgery, and thus needs time to upgrade his conditioning. It would be worthwhile to put him together with Plekanec and Bourque. Blunden had six hits and it may motivate Bourque to do likewise.

    Until our friend UCE has had a chance to wake up in Vancouver, you can call me “A Misguided Canadien.”

    “May you live in interesting times.”

    • TomNickle says:

      Campoli, other than a couple of brain farts, has been tremendous since the trade deadline in my opinion.

      I feel he’s been our second best defenseman since the 27th of February.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        second? who is first?

        • TomNickle says:

          Subban.

          • Mr_MacDougall says:

            No Way Campoli has outplayed Gorges. I’ll admit he has played better as of late.

          • TomNickle says:

            How’s that exactly? Gorges is a shot blocker. Campoli when playing well is physical, an excellent puck mover, gets shots through to the net and has the speed to compensate for mistakes. It’s a matter of consistency. If Campoli were consistent, he’d be head and shoulders more valuable than Gorges. He’s not consistent. But he’s been better in my opinion since the end of February.

          • Mr_MacDougall says:

            I guess I was not watching close enough, I see Gorges as more than a shot blocker. His positioning is sound, his breakout passes are much better than CC’s (who often rips it around the boards when he actually has time to make a pass). Gorges rarely gets beaten off the rush, has a great stick, clears rebounds.. not bad for “just a shot blocker.”

            Oh, he also holds the offensive blue-line better than most D on the team.

      • habstrinifan says:

        Not tremendous. Not second best. Best of the rest is more like it. Still if you stripping the house down to its solid foundation he goe sto the ‘may re-use’ lot… until you have the big picture decided.

  40. Cal says:

    I want Markov to play tonight. I’d like Bourque to watch from the pressbox. He’s been awful. As in, “I am in awe of how full of shit Bourque is.” He leave his work ethic in Calgary or has he always been a career floater picking up goals from others’ hard work?

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I understand the frustration with Bourque, however, this team has been in dissarray since the JM firing the RC hiring the Mgmt apologizing etc…

      Team has to have a new coach who has authority and these new players need to go through a training camp together. This does not give Bourque a free pass for his play, but I will reserve judgement until we have a permanent coach who gets a full season with these players.

      • Cal says:

        He should be skating and hitting. Blunden right now, coming off his injury, was way better last night. Bourque needs someone in the room to smack him upside the head.

      • TomNickle says:

        Campoli’s reaction to Cunneyworth’s brow beating last night was fantastic. Cunneyworth wants a chip and chase game into the offensive zone and berates a player who tried to do exactly what he’s coached to do unsuccessfully. If you’re going to preach chipping, you have to be prepared for bounces to go the other way and not come down on your players when a play you’re preaching that requires no skill doesn’t work in your favour.

        This coaching staff is in over its head.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          I think your final sentence sums it up. Even worse with PG sending his assistant down to the bench as well. It is a complete hodge podge.

          I feel bad for saying this, because RC I think could become a good Head Coach, but the whole circumstance regarding his hiring, the team he was given and many other circumstances just do indeed have this group in over their head.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        Why no Jason Spezza in the MVP talk? Many games he was in on ALL Ottawa goals… (I have him in my pool as a 7th round pick)

      • boing007 says:

        Baloney. Bourque has been playing in the NHL for many years. He has talent and skills. He knows what to do and he’s not doing it. As they love to say in the US Army ‘get your head out of your ass troop’.

        Richard R

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      My friend is a Flames fan that watches every game and told me that Bourque is “very underwhelming.” He also said don’t let his size fool you, he rarely uses it. He also said that when he plays well (every 5th game) he looks amazing.

    • LafleurGuy says:

      At least Coach Cunneyworth called out Bourque, which Martin would not. Kostitsyn, through a translator stated that the coach never talked to him, and he often wondered why he was benched. These two players have similarities. Bourque has below average puck carrying skills, but I could say the same about Frank Mahovolich. Frank’s bro’ Peter was exceptional and I still love Peter’s deke out of Tretiak in the 3-1 Canadian victory at Maple Leaf Gardens, after the 7-2 pasting at the Forum in the ’72 Summit Series. Bourque may still evolve to an effective role as a shooter (I hesitate to use the term sniper). See comment above about pairing Bourque with Blunden.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

  41. HabinBurlington says:

    Who is the NHL MVP at this point in the race? I come up with 3 names off the top of my head and all are Eastern Based teams (Victim of watching these teams more I guess).
    Malkin, Stamkos and Karlsson.

    • TomNickle says:

      I think Henrik Lundqvist has to be in the conversation. If the Islanders make the playoffs John Tavares would get my vote.

      Malkin is probably the unanimous leader right now for good reason. I still think Lundqvist gets my vote if the Islanders fall short. The Rangers lack star power on defense and Lundqvist has been phenomenal from start to finish this season.

      Tim Thomas should have won last year though. So Lundqvist probably doesn’t have a strong case. It’s pure robbery to this day that Thomas had arguably the best season ever for a player at his position and didn’t win the Hart.

      The writers doing the voting seem to favour the trendy pick instead of the right choice. Sedin over Crosby and Perry over Thomas are the two most recent examples.

      • LafleurGuy says:

        Lundqvist is a great candidate.

        “May you live in interesting times.”

      • HabinBurlington says:

        I completely overlooked Lundqvist, you are correct, in fact he should be right there with Malkin. Thanks Tom.

        • TomNickle says:

          I still say Tavares if the Islanders make the playoffs. He’s done an amazing job of transforming himself as a hockey player. He’s sacrificing offense to become a more well rounded player and I will be disappointed if he isn’t given Selke consideration.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            I agree that Tavares has become an elite two way player, I just don’t think he is in the running because of where his team is in the standings. Stamkos is in the running because he leads the league in Goals. But end of day I think 2 horse race between Malkin and Lundqvist.

            I hope for Tavares sake, the Islanders as a franchise can get their act together. Would be a shame to see him play a career with little or no playoff exposure.

          • TomNickle says:

            That organization will not get its act together as long as Charles Wang and Garth Snow have any power.

      • matt jordan says:

        “If the Islanders make the playoffs”….. If?

        Okay, by that logic, if the Canadiens make the playoffs, I choose Carey Price for MVP!

        • TomNickle says:

          Price is among the elite at his position no doubt. But Tavares has put his team on his back and up until a week ago had them within striking distance of a playoff spot.

          He’s become an elite player at almost every aspect of the game. He’s better defensively than Malkin and Stamkos and has less talent around him.

    • LafleurGuy says:

      Interesting that the Western Conference teams have “production by committee,” and therefore the elite teams don’t heavily rely on a single MVP type player.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

    • Cal says:

      Malkin and easily. Without him the Pens would have no rudder.

      • TomNickle says:

        Not as easy as you think. The same can be said for the Rangers without Lundqvist and the Islanders without Tavares.

        Tavares by the way has transformed himself into an excellent defensive player. In the top 10 in the NHL in takeaways.

        • Cal says:

          Sorry, Tom, but the giveaway and takeaway stats are done by the same officials who count scoring chances. Baseball type stats in hockey do not work.
          I agree with Tavares for consideration, though. It looks like he has been auditioning for an offer sheet. Too bad he is signed until 2018.

          • TomNickle says:

            Those takeaway stats are relevant regardless. Gonna tell me Hossa, Toews and Datsyuk have them skewed in their favour?

            It speaks volumes about Tavares that with his lack of footspeed that he’s able to be as good as he is defensively.

          • Cal says:

            @TomN,
            The puck changes teams over 400 times a game. These stats are created by math geeks who believe they are relevant to the game when all you really need to do is watch. For myself, when Datsyuk or any player dumps the puck in to the other team’s zone for a line change and the other team picks it up, why isn’t that a giveaway? Because that’s exactly what it is. The only stats that matter really, are goals scored for and against. The rest don’t really matter. Unless you’re a math freak trying to quantify the fastest team game on the planet.

  42. Captain aHab says:

    What would happen to contracts if for some reason the NHL and NHLPA can’t reach agreement and a strike ensues? Do contracts age by a year?

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

  43. Hali_Hab says:

    Also we now have to content with the wild as they have dropped off as of late and are now right in the mix

  44. Hali_Hab says:

    Man I hope PB starts tonight .. If this miserable season ends with out a top 3 draft choice then it is truly a waste.

  45. Captain aHab says:

    I think it’ll depend on what they get at the draft. If they do manage to get a big C who is pretty close to NHL-ready, then I think he’ll be traded for help on the wings or on D. One thing the Habs absolutely also need to get is a C who can win key faceoffs. They did well last night but in general, it’s a weakness.

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

  46. HabsBeen says:

    Give Rene Bourque some slack. Is it his fault he’s playing with someone who’s -20? Before Montreal he was only like -4. Plekanic has been a curse to anyone who’s played wth him this season. He (Plekanik) belongs on the third line, a shutdown line. Make Bourque play more with Eller and probably Gionta when he’s ready. Plekanic then forms a shutdown line with Moen and probably White or Darche.

    • Cal says:

      Is it Pleks fault he’s been trying to skate with Bourque muck on his blades? For a big guy, he plays like Diaz.

    • neumann103 says:

      Ding! Ding! Ding!

      Only 8:22 AM and we have a candidate for the dumbest post of the day:

      “Give Rene Bourque some slack. Is it his fault he’s playing with someone who’s -20? Before Montreal he was only like -4. Plekanic has been a curse to anyone who’s played wth him this season. He (Plekanik) …”

      Rene Bourque has more than enough slack to go around. That is the problem.

      Plekanec has taken all the tough assignments for this year, again and again taking one for the team. He was again the best skater on the Habs last night vs the Senators (all due respect to Gorges).

      In a year widely viewed as an offensive disaster he is #30 in the 30 team league for points in his position.

      He has done this playing with a rotating assortment of wingers from the AHL and various rehab programs.

      One of the things I was noticing in his stats is his relatively high shot total and career low shooting percentage. (and compare it to Desharnais). Plekanec prefers to pass. in fact early in his career it is what drove me nuts about him – never shooting. But he has no one to pass to and is either forcing passes, giveing the puck to guys who cannot finish or just taking a lower percentage shot than he would like to.

      I was in the 5th row in Buffalo last week and there were three plays that Pleks made to get the puck to an open Bourque at the side of the net. These are the sorts of plays that Cole or MaxPac would convert on about 50% of the time. so would Gionta if he were healthy and on Plek’s wing. Bourque will cash in maybe 10%. That is the big difference this year.

      He earns every freaking nickel he makes and there are about 29 other teams who would fall all over themselves to have this guy.

      And if you are going to post a hatchet job on Plekanec at least pick a misspelling.

      “Et le but!”

    • Captain aHab says:

      Yet another reason to sign Price and Subban early and bury Gomer. Then try to clear out toxic contracts at the next trade deadline. Why do I get a feeling that the Habs will overpay big time for stiffs instead ?
      —————-
      Avast, me proud beauty! Wanna know why my Roger is so Jolly?

      • 24 Cups says:

        I agree. The Habs basically need to fill three holes: a 4th line centre, a kickass Dman and a LW who can play 2nd line minutes. I’ve checked the lists and there isn’t much out there, especially for the LW spot. Might be best to keep our power dry and let other teams overpay. Once the new CBA is worked out, the team can then start mapping out a budget for the next year (2013-14).

    • HabinBurlington says:

      If the cap floor goes up $5million, isn’t that kind of like adding 15 goals and 20 assists to Gomez stats?

  47. Captain aHab says:

    Still top 5 I would think. People say Edmonton needs D and wouldn’t draft him but they could trade their 1st rounder for the established D-man and whoever gets their pick could take him.

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

  48. boing007 says:

    Being in the top ten doesn’t necessarily mean that a player is the best pick available.

    Richard R

  49. Habfan10912 says:

    Agree Shiloh but it seems the roster is loaded with 4th liners.

  50. LafleurGuy says:

    I also see potential in Blunden because of his size and skating ability. Perhaps he can be groomed into a Chuck Lefley, or Murray Wilson (who was a rocket on skates).

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  51. Mr_MacDougall says:

    Darche, Blunden, Staubitz, White, Moen, LL, Pallujia?, who am I missing?

  52. habstrinifan says:

    Great observation. 4TH liners in offense and defense comparatively speaking. Which is why I made the statement that the biggest factor may not be who we acquire but who we get rid of.

  53. HabinBurlington says:

    Moen is completely legitimate 3rd liner. He can score important goals, is defensive responsible, can skate and hit. Also with other added muscle on this team, he no longer alone has to shoulder the role of big brother to every one. I think LL can be a solid 3rd line player, but I would add Geoffrion to the 4th line in his current level. He is getting older, but am hopeful he can develop some more in AHL next year.

  54. Sharks9 says:

    Put Moen, LL and Geoffrion on the 3rd line and Staubitz, White and Blunden on the 4th line. Darche and Palushaj can go to the AHL or some other team.

    25 before 14

  55. Captain aHab says:

    After telling us that Moen was not gonna be traded, how funny is it going to be when they don’t re-sign him and he lands elsewhere?

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

  56. HabinBurlington says:

    Captain I would not be laughing, i hear your fear in that statement. I really hope Travis is back next year.

  57. Mr_MacDougall says:

    I agree Moen is a defensive 3rd liner. 5 goals is a good year for him. This season is the anomaly, as his shooting % is at 20. I expect to see Bourque, Eller, Gomez as the 3rd line next year (as Gomez isn’t going anywhere unless he is traded.)

  58. Mr_MacDougall says:

    That 3rd line sounds like one on a last place club! I’d rather Eller, Bourque, Gomez!

  59. habstrinifan says:

    Yep I was right there. The call on P.K there and a call on Cole were brutal. Absolutely brutal.

  60. boing007 says:

    It’s the New NHL.

    Richard R


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