Price takes part in full practice, but still listed as day-to-day (with video)

After a day off on Thursday, the Canadiens were back on the ice Friday morning in Brossard as they prepare to face the Ottawa Senators Saturday night at the Bell Centre (7 p.m., CBC, RDS, TSN Radio 690).

Goaltender Carey Price was on the ice a half hour before the start of the 11 a.m. practice taking shots from a half-dozen teammates. Price has missed the last eight games with a lower-body injury, during which time the Canadiens have gone 3-4-1. Price took part in the entire practice, spending about 90 minutes on the ice in total.

“Carey Price is still day-to-day, but we’re pretty happy about the way he practised,” coach Michel Therrien told reporters after practice ended.

Michael Bournival, who has been sidelined with a concussion, was cleared for contact and took part in the practice.

Lars Eller was a happy guy at practice after being reunited with Brendan Gallagher and Alex Galchenyuk on the Kid Line (or EGG Line) that was successful together earlier in the season.

“We know each other very well and we’re very comfortable playing with each other. I look forward to Saturday,” Eller told reporters after practice. “I always like playing with those two. We have fun playing together and have different assets which gel well together. We’re always creating scoring chances out there, and when you do that the goals will follow.”

Here’s how the lines and defence pairings looked:

Pacioretty-Desharnais-Vanek
Briere-Plekanec-Gionta
Galchenyuk-Eller-Gallagher
Moen-Prust-Weise
Bourque-White-Parros

Markov-Emelin
Bouillon-Subban
Murray-Tinordi
Weaver

It will be a busy weekend for the Canadiens, who will travel to Buffalo after Saturday’s game and face the Sabres Sunday night (7 p.m., TSN-HABS, RDS, TSN Radio 690). 

(Photo by Pierre Obendrauf/The Gazette)

Price on brink of return to lineup, by The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs

Eller happy as Kid Line reunited, by Dave Stubbs

Galchenyuk should have a bigger role, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

Eller, Gallagher, Galchenyuk are three of a kind, Canadiens.com

Post-practice interviews (video), Canadiens.com

Games against Wings could be key for Habs, by Pat Hickey

Tiffany Parros has fashion – and business – sense, by The Gazette’s Brenda Branswell

This week’s HI/O Show highlights

Bourque is Habs’ multi-million dollar question, CBC.ca

Lehner could get the call in Montreal for Senators, Ottawa Citizen

752 Comments

  1. SmartDog says:

    Just 2 Questions:
    1. If the Habs miss the playoffs and Molson fires both Therrien and Bergevin, would you support that?
    2. Do the Habs really need to miss the playoffs for Molson to decide things are not going in the right direction? Is that the most important measure?
    SD
    ————————————-
    Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • Dave Jones says:

      I have a strong preference for longevity. But Therrien confuses me greatly. Bergevin I think has done too many good things; it can’t be his head on the chopping block.

      • SmartDog says:

        But Bergevin hired Therrien. And he seems to support Therrien’s treatment of Subban, over-use of veterans etc. To me, Therrien’s short-comings are on Bergevin. No?

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

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      1. Definitely not fire Bergevin, he’s doing a fine job. Therrien wouldn’t really deserve it but I’d live.

      2. I think Molson believes the Habs are currently headed in the right direction.

      • BriPro says:

        My turn to agree 100% on all counts.

      • twilighthours says:

        But is Bergevin doing a fine job?

        He’s given us Briere, Boullion, Murray, the DD contract (which I don’t mind but most hate), the Emelin contract…

        He might lose Markov for zippo.

        He’s allowing his coach to alienate some of his young talent (Eller, PK). I know this point is contentious and I’m not trying to stir stuff up. But it’s a pretty common observation.

        • Luke says:

          That the Earth was the centre of the Universe was also a pretty common observation…

          (OH yah! IT’s on man!!! FIGHTFIGHTFIGHT!)

          I ran 5k on Monday, for the record. First time out running in 3 months (This is the real reason why I replied) How’s your knee?

          • twilighthours says:

            Feels pretty good most days. Even when it doesn’t, running doesn’t seem to hinder it. I’ve put down some good days recently. 17k last weekend, 20k is on tap for tomorrow. I’ve only got one race on the sched this year so there is no pressure to be anything other than fat and slow. Good times. I thought you ran every day for 3 years or soemthing?

          • Mattyleg says:

            Lunatics.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • HabsPooch says:

          100 % on board.

        • Hobie Hansen says:

          Briere, Bouillon and Murray were all minor little deals that don’t have a significant impact on the future. I wasn’t happy about DD but he’s been playing quite well. Emelin deal will be fine next year.

          So ya…good job Bergevin.

        • rhino514 says:

          Bouillon: Whenever he plays, he is hardly ever the habs worst Dman out there. He gets no respect but he can actually skate and hit pretty well. Though this is probably his last year, he was a capable 6th D last year and is pretty good as a stand-in 7th d this year.

          Briere: as of now a bad contract but reserve judgement until the playoffs are over. Also remember he can be bought out for peanuts because he was a previous buy-out.

          Murray: I don´t like him much, but most on here agree he has been worth his salary

          DD: after a terrible start, he´s been the team´s best offensive centre.

          Emelin: coming back from injury.

          Markov: doubt the habs will lose him.

          PK: won the Norris under Therrien last year in his break-out year.
          Therrien´s “treatment” of him is pure speculation. PK makes some bonehead plays once in a while and the coach should not give him special treatment just because he´s a star. BTW JM and Cunneyworth took the same approach.

          Eller: had a semi-break-out year last year also under Therrien

          I question wether Therrien is a great coach, but not for the reasons you propose. I also believe no one more suited to the Mtl market was available at the time.

          I´d say Parros, Briere, and possibly Weaver, up to now have been needless moves, but they´ve all been marginal moves; none have been discernably hurtful to the team. Vanek, we´ll see how that works out (thoug everybody loves him for this move)

        • Maritime Ronn says:

          He also signed Max long term steal deal and the same with Price

    • ont fan says:

      Same old question, limited choices, limited period!

    • New says:

      1. No.
      2. No. No.
      That was three questions.

    • shiram says:

      1. no, GMMB gets to fire the coach before his job is threatened.
      2. yes, and I don’t know about most important, but it’s gotta count heavily.

    • johnnylarue says:

      1. No way. All I am saying / Is give Marc a chance.
      2. It’s irrelevant. Molson will give Bergevin time to reshape this team more definitively before throwing in the towel.

    • HabsPooch says:

      Yes and Yes.

    • Thomas Le Fan says:

      Therrien should go. Period. Other than that, I think Bergevin has done what he’s set out to do. Of course, I couldn’t say for sure what that is but …

      Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

  2. Luke says:

    To Burly and all the Beer folks near and far:

    There’s a Craft Beer Festival in Niagara Falls in a couple of weeks.
    (Look, it’s Evidence: http://www.realcanadianbeerfest.ca/)

    (Also as a side note: My local pub is getting Beau’s on tap. Style to vary).

    • Forum Dog says:

      Was recently in MTL. I love the city for a number of reasons, but the beer selection is near the top. Some really great craft brewing companies and brew-pubs (i.e. Dieu du Ciel). Also found a pretty good and economically priced red IPA. “L’Alchimiste”! Brought a case home with me and finished it off in short order….

      • Mattyleg says:

        There’s an awesome Brew-pub right round the corner from my house, called l’Espace Publique. Amazingly good beer, although not bottling it yet.

        There are a few others that are doing good business too.

        And the Quebec-wide craft beer movement is huge. Pit Caribou and Le Naufrageur from the Gaspé are amazing, as is Le Bilboquet from St. Hyacinthe, and a ton of others.

        We’re living in good times.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • Forum Dog says:

          L’Espace Publique eh? I’ll check it out next time there. Bottle-wise, Le Castor was another one that caught my attention.

          Back here in Ottawa I’ll be having the best of the semi-mass produced offerings from the LCBO. Not nearly as good a selection, but will do the trick. Plus some Irish whiskey to celebrate the ancestry…..

          Cheers!

  3. Dave Jones says:

    There may be questions about hockey IQ and focus, but those lines are all undeniably talented. We desperately need Price back, and I will soon be fed up with Therrien if he doesn’t call up Beaulieu. But I am encouraged by these line combinations.

    • Dave Jones says:

      Markov-Subban
      Beaulieu-Tinordi
      Emelin-Gorges

      ^ I think it’s time for these pairings. (Ya, I know Gorges is hurt, but for playoffs. The young guys are ready).

    • B says:

      The GM no doubts discusses things with his coach, but it is the GM who is ultimately responsible for personnel decisions such as calling up guys from Hamilton.

      –Go Habs Go!–

      • Dave Jones says:

        Ya, the GM calls players up, you right, you right. I should not have phrased it like that. And perhaps Therrien feels obligated to play Murray, Frankie, and even Weaver now, precisely because the GM has added these guys. But I stand by my confusion over Therrien. Surely it’s up to him to make pairings and identify problems. But, okay, it’s a wash. Both MB and MT have made frustrating decisions regarding defensive personnel.

  4. Thomas Le Fan says:

    Heck if Eller, Galchenyuk and Gallagher start clicking again can we declare Therrien a genius? Huh can we?

    Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

  5. theflukester says:

    Pacioretty-Desharnais-Vanek
    Briere-Plekanec-Gionta
    Galchenyuk-Eller-Gallagher
    Moen-Prust-Weise
    Bourque-White-Parros

    Markov-Emelin
    Bouillon-Subban
    Murray-Tinordi
    Weaver

    If this is the lineup, we might be ok. This lineup makes sense but needs time to re-sync.

    Play every game as if it is your last one. Guy Lafleur

  6. Dunboyne Mike says:

    “I am shocked THerrien is making another player play not in his natural position.”

    A typical gem!
    Posted with the speed and unanswerableness of a pouncing leopard!
    Cheers!

  7. fastfreddy says:

    Galchenyuk, Pleks, Eller, ( ? ) our starting Centres next season, gotta go that way.

    CH = Les Glorieux!!!

  8. BriPro says:

    I came on early this morning, but all of the venting (left overs from yesterday), I didn’t feel like getting chewed out.
    So now that it’s calmed down, even slightly, my observations:

    – Those who claim the Laffs are better than us. We didn’t watch the same game last night. If not for their goaltending, they were toast last night. Oh sure, they have the Kessel line, but not much else. Their D is certainly lacking.

    – Our Habs against the Bruins. Team A showed up in the first period and parts of the third, but let’s be honest, the goaltending hasn’t been very good since Carey went down. And when Team B shows up, I turn off the TV, because it gets too depressing. I’d give Tokarsky another chance.

    – Line combinations. I don’t know which should be categorized as a first or second or even third line. All I know is that, if MT finds the right combination (and I like the ones listed above), as long as each line scores a goal, or one line scores multiple goals and the team wins, I really don’t care where they are in the team’s hierarchy.

    – The team is in 4th in the division and yes, there is nipping at their heels, but Price is almost back. When he does, and they go back on a winning streak, this site will be far more enjoyable.

    – Finally, I think the team’s biggest challenge between now and the end of the year will be against another western team….. the Avalanche. Those guys are loaded with talent. Who would have thought that MacKinnon would have 25 goals for the year, never mind so far…. ?!

    • fastfreddy says:

      And our D is that much better? Our offence isn’t!

      CH = Les Glorieux!!!

      • ont fan says:

        Have watched some of the late night Leaf hockey. Sure, they may be toast without goaltending, but they are entertaining. They do score goals. Never really get the feeling we are going to score. Price or not, we don’t score much.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      hi bri

      You mention, ” If not for their goaltending, they were toast last night.”
      Hmmm, and how many times have Habs fans said that this year?

      • dr. schmutzdeker says:

        eggs-zachery…(not to mention all last year we heard the same thing as well)

      • BriPro says:

        Hi Ron,

        All I’m saying is that there’s a lot of dumping on the team, but we all know that you’re only as good as the man in nets (and potting a few). I know that our team is lacking, but I find it frustrating to have people come on here and state that the Laffs are a better team… better coaching …. better D.
        I don’t think any of those are true.
        And we’re fortunate in having one of the best in the world.
        Who knows? Carey might be able to pull off an ’86 or a ’93.

        • Maritime Ronn says:

          At this point, I have no idea who is better.
          A playoff series would be unbelievable.
          How much fun would that be?

          • BriPro says:

            That would be worth a mini-summit, all on its own.
            But we couldn’t invite Matty or Ian.
            Every time they go to a game, our Habs lose. ;)

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          Hey Bri and Ronn.
          I’m quite good — not professional standard, mind — at taking off my Flanelle-tinted spectacles. I would suggest that our A-game is better than the Leafs’. And yes, I’d love a playoff series.

      • Just a Habs Fan says:

        TO’s success this year is all about their goaltending but 75% of the schedule has passed and it is still ” if it wasn’t for their goaltending ” So in summary TO has really good goaltending and at least one exceptional line. That gets them some traction on the playoffs and I bet there are not many teams looking forward to meeting them in the first round or any round for that matter. Too many on here aren’t willing to give them credit but look at the standings…they are scary….but I guess we’ll see in a fe weeks

    • Hobie Hansen says:

      Agree on all counts.

      As far as the Leafs and Habs go, the forwards on both sides are pretty close. If Vanek wasn’t there now Toronto would have an edge in that department.

      I think with Subban and Markov, the Habs defence edges out Toronto.

      Price is better than their goaltending.

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Leafs fans may argue that Bernier has the exact same SP as Price and only 1 less win because Price has started 4 more games.
        They might also argue about Price’s NHL playoff performances and his record in OT.

        A playoff series against the Leafs would answer most of those questions.

  9. SmartDog says:

    A pretty depressing day at HIO
    – reminders of the Habs snubbing Larry Robinson for Martin and then Therrien (yah, but they’re bilingual!!)
    – suggestions that PK wants a short contract so he can leave (thanks to how Therrien treats him… which no-one would blame him for)
    – reminders of how much Therrien has juggled his lines and how inconsistently he uses players (Boulon scratched for months and now playing top pairing numbers)

    What a sh$t show the Habs are. Bergevin promised better. If you say “fire Therrien!”, I say “fire Bergevin too”. He’s pulling the strings on this mickymouse team.

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

    • docketrocket says:

      Time for MB to step up.

    • Mattyleg says:

      I’ve had a great day on here.

      I guess you find what you’re looking for, eh?

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Habilis says:

      I’m with you.

      This season should be one where we take that next step. Move from being a bubble team to a solid playoff team with the ability to win 2 or 3 rounds. That kind of experience would be important, especially for the younger guys and Price. We really do have the talent to do it too, especially now with Vanek in the fold. But our coach is hindering us. Big time. At least IMO.

      I still can’t believe that MB has left MT at the helm this long. Really makes me question his overall judgement. He wins me over with his moves, but he loses me by leaving a below-average coach behind the bench.

    • Luke says:

      If PK is sad b/c his boss is tough on him and has quit on the Habs, as some suggest, then I’m all for trading him before the league susses out that he is spoiled brat and before he gets locked into a huge dollar contract with a whole bunch of No Trade Clauses in it.

      The return could be epic, and if he’s been pouting since missing 4 shifts in Philly, than by all mean pull that trigger MB (at the draft).

      • twilighthours says:

        I would think that if your boss spent the last 2 (or even longer) years trying to make you a better person and holding you to a different standard than that of your coworkers, you’d be p!ssed off too.

        Sorry, Luke. I disagree with you.

        I’d choose PK over most NHL players, and especially over Therrien.

        • Mattyleg says:

          I would hope he holds Subban to a different standard than Ryan White, or Alexi Emelin.

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • twilighthours says:

            Ah you know what I mean, Matty. Gionta doesn’t get bench for periods at a time for bad penalties. Markov doesn’t get mentioned by name for poor play during press conferences. No one is trying to turn Price into a better person.

            My position on this: I know squat about hockey but a lot about people. Especially young adults (I know, PK isn’t really there anymore). And I can’t imagine handling my best students the way the Habs have handled PK. If he wants to split town, I’d completely agree. If he wants to say, then he’s a better person than I’d be (not hard, perhaps).

        • Luke says:

          (No need to be sorry, It’s cool, I can handle being disagreed with). But, I don’t know, Twi.

          PK is starting to remind me of Ovechkin. And don’t get me wrong. I love watching Ovechkin. I think he and PK are both world class talents. Right at the top of the heap.

          But, I don’t think I’d want Ovechkin on my team anymore. I don’t think PK is there yet, but I’m starting to see it creeping in… like when he decides to rush the puck despite being the last guy back.

          I dunno… but I’m sluggish and in a food coma.

          • twilighthours says:

            Ovechkin is a great athlete who doesn’t know or care to know how to play hockey, and only works hard when he has the puck.

            I see PK as the exact opposite – he works too hard. He’s trying to do too much. He definitely needs coaching in this regard, but Therrien’s tough-love-grind-him-down approach has gone stale.

            From a hockey standpoint, trading him wouldn’t be horrible as the haul would be huge (although I think he’s a unique talent and therefore impossible to replace). From a fan standpoint, particularly me, I’d hate it. I’d rather watch PK than Gorges or pretty much anyone else. Why deal a guy because the coach doesn’t like him?

            Obviously, all my opinion.

      • Forum Dog says:

        All I’ll say on this is that, based on the way he plays hockey and the way he interacts with the media and fans, PK is a fantastic hockey player and a top-flight person. If the Habs find a way to screw up their relationship with him, that is on them. MT will be gone in 2-3 years max. Subban could have a all-star career for the next 10-12. It’s a no-brainer.

  10. Dunboyne Mike says:

    So who on the Sens is going to spend Saturday night piling into Emelin with impunity following Lucic’s high-profile example?

    If Emelin survives to Sunday, who will take up the destroy-Emelin baton on behalf of the Sabres?

    Has he become the slightly but noticeably lame gnu at the back of the herd, the one the carnivores patiently wait for?

  11. Maritime Ronn says:

    dragonwind2000 says:
    Just read this CBC article about Bourque. Some interesting observations. The devil you know or the devil you don’t? What do do:
    http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/nhl/rene-bourque-is-habs-multi-million-dollar-question-1.2572627
    —————-
    Surprisingly, the article is factually wrong.

    It states, “…Should he give winger Rene Bourque a $3.67-million US check on June 15 to buy out the remaining two years of his contract?”

    In fact, if a buyout was to happen, the actual dollar costs to the Habs would be spread out over 4 years with 4 payments of 833,333/year…and not 1 cheque.

    http://www.capgeek.com/buyout-calculator/?player_id=444&buyout_y=2014&buyout_m=06&buyout_d=15

    The other fact not mentioned in the article is that Bourque could be an interesting player in a trade for a team that needs to hit the Cap Floor, yet wants to pay a lessor salary

    Bourque Salary for next 2 years:
    $2.5M while his Capt Hit is $3.33M.
    Lastly with the new CBA, the Habs could also withhold up to 50% of Cap/Salary in a trade if need be.

    Many options and certainly no rush.

    • Thanks to M-Ronn for shedding light on the numbers side of things.

      Personally, I’d try him again with Gallagher on a line combo to see if he wakes up. Mathew G–do you know how many games he played on that line? And who else did he play with? DD? I don’t think we have anything to lose by trying the experiment with Gallagher again, seeing as MT has split them up to incorporate Vanek.

      Defense wins championships

      “To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible.” St. Thomas Aquinas

  12. HABSGUARDIANANGEL says:

    so michele theieren scratches bouillon for about 3 months, and now he re inserts him and puts him on the top pairing? what the hell is this guy smoking?

    • gerrybell says:

      MT is clearing trying to get fired. next he will be dragging the 93 stanley cup trophy around the parking lot tied to his car!

      g
      b

      • mark-ID says:

        haha beauty Seinfeld reference!

        “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        Hey GB! Don’t recall reading a post by you before — talk about setting the bar really high!! You prompted such a violent outburst of laughter that the wife is now looking at me like I’m guilty of something!

  13. Stanley Cup says:

    It seems nobody has noticed MT has upgraded his suits.

    You gotta look good for the reintegration on antichambre.

    Frack him. Frack him good.

  14. Ghosts of the Forum says:

    Emelin – PK (Emmy has been bad, but left side would help hopefully)
    Markov – Beaulieau
    Tinordi – Murray (Gorges when he’s back)

  15. Buzz Lightbeer says:

    It’s nice to see the Gally’s back with Eller. I know they sputtered after about 5-7 games but i think that had more to do with match-ups since they were the only offensive threat early on. With the DD,Patch,Vanek line now hopefully this causes some more favourable matchups and the kids can rekindle some magic,because we need it bad.
    I assume Briere will start with Pleks then IF we get a lead Moen will be bumped up to that line yawn predictable.

  16. 24 Cups says:

    Jacob de la Rose could be in Hamilton next year.

  17. christophor says:

    Reposted (with some additions and minor changes) from the discussion below about possession stats:

    Which line of reasoning is more thorough?

    (1) Player X is good because he’s a physical presence; he hits and clears the crease.

    (2) Stats from hundreds of games over several years show that the Habs severely outshoot and outchance their opponents when players Y and Z are on the ice but are severely outshot and outchanced by their opponents when player X in on the ice. (Also, these stats are detailed enough to compare a player’s performance when paired with different players, so that we can more confidently determine that player’s individual effect.)

    I hear (1) in this forum a lot of times. But some also have the gall to say that (2) is not “proveable”, as in less evidence-based. I’ll take the in-depth, hours-long analysis over lazy, vague, and unanalyzed use of ideas like “physical presence” and “crease clearing”.

    (1) is like homeopathy while (2) is like modern medicine. Hockey is too complex for the eye-test to reliably tell you much, so you look for quantifiable patterns over longer samples. Analyzing the game that way doesn’t tell you everything or even most things, but it suggests important things about individual players, coaches, etc. This is why basically every team employs stat analysts (though the old time hockey culture leads teams to keep quiet about it).

    Edit: What’s more subjective?

    (A) It looks to me from casually viewing that X is good.

    (B) It looks to me from hours of studying past games (with the eye and with stats) that when X is on the ice, his team is badly outchanced and outshot. This is true no matter who X plays with and what team X plays for.

    As I said below, controlling for those kinds of conditions in (B) (i.e. teammates and teams) is exactly what good analysis does (i.e. analysis trying to get around mitigating and subjective factors).

    • Mattyleg says:

      Christophor, this post isn’t any less silly at the top of the page than it was 3/4 of the way down.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Thomas Le Fan says:

      All I know is that Therrien ruined Player X for good. ;)

      Hockey isn’t everything … it’s the only thing … except for beer and guitars!

    • marvin20 says:

      Not sure why you think it is all player X fault. The habs have a competitive defensive system. The problem as I see it the Habs can not score more than two gaols a game constantly . Unless the Habs get a shutout every game, or only allow 1 goal against, they have no chance of winning.

  18. Mr_MacDougall says:

    @HIB from previous page RE Plek being dealt.

    HIB, I like your posts and are you’re one of the few I’ll respond to.

    I too underestimated DD, I think it was the term and money he was given while having less experience than PK (where was DD’s bridge?) and that Patch is a first line player. MT takes a lot of heat but I think he’s a matchup first coach with two things in mind. DD and Patch in offensively favourable situations (have to because Patch is obviously our biggest weapon). I think on a top tier NHL team Patch and DD are a second line.

    Plekanec/Gionta play against opposition top lines with offensive unfavourable starts, and Plek still puts up pretty good numbers. He has a great contract for what he brings, arguably a top 10 Selke candidate every year, he was home grown and we know what to expect every season. He likely has 5 excellent seasons left, I would expect it’d be in the teams plans to be a serious contender in the next 5 years, and his skill set is very hard to replace. Given that he doesn’t have the talent to be a top line player he can slot in as our third line centre, even at his current salary (especially given what DD makes in the second line) I’d be very hesitant in trading Plek.

    I think the team lacks an entire first line, the line that is the first wave on the PP, first line after a penalty kill riding the huge boost, last minute of the game down a goal.. The Habs don’t have that. Vanek could fit on that line, hopefully Galchenyuk.. Definitely not Eller. I’d like to see,Eller moved to the wing when Galchenyuk moves to centre, put him with Plek.

    Kinda,on and off topic, but safe to say I like Plek, in a more defined role.

    ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

    ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I’m not really in the trade Plex camp, but as posters like Paz have pointed out in the past, eventually Galchenyuk needs to be our #1 centerman, if this team is going to compete for a Cup. In order for him to become #1 center some type of shuffling of centers must occur. DD will need to prove he can still provide scoring for the team as a 2nd line center, and to do this we will require more top 6 talent at the forward positions. Problem is, how do we get that top 6 talent? UFA’s are generally overpaid stars whose best before date has expired. Bringing up talent from the farm (we lack in this area) is another way, but we are a ways away. This leaves a trade as perhaps the only viable option. Given Plex is still of tremendous value, I can see him getting us a bonafide scoring winger in a trade.

      It was with this in mind that I floated my trade Plex thought.

      In an ideal world, MB trades DD this offseason (assuming that without the teams best wingers his production as a 2nd line center don’t make the Habs a contender). Plex continues as a 2nd line type center who provides both offence and defence, while Galchenyuk begins to establish himself as our bonafide elite scoring centerman.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        Exactly. Top line talent forwards are very tough to come by though Free agency on deals of reasonable term, usually the players end up getting much longer than he is useful. Pacioretty is a top line scorer, but with DD the line becomes a second unit…

        This team desperately need top line talent. Vanek is that, but he’ll likely leave. Gaborik is that, but chances are slim to land him. A line needs,to be built around Galchenyuk more than anybody moving forward… We need him to be great, otherwise the team has major,major issues.

        It’s very far fetched but if the team were to move Briere and Bourque (by some stroke of salary eating genius and sorcery) adding both Vanek and Gaborik on 3-4 year deals (another sprinkle of angle dust) would have a line for Chucky… 2nd DD patch Gally. Life is good and MB loses his soul to Satan.

        But seriously.. It is impossible to get top line talent in this,league anywhere but the draft.. Maybe Molson has to pony up and start authorizing “our 1st plus $15million for the first overall pick” type deals, if they’re possible.

        ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

    • fastfreddy says:

      @ Mr.Mcdougall I like and agree with your post, so true, we could trade Pleks but we need him. As far as DD and MaxPac go, you are correct, on a western team or some eastern teams , those 2 are 2nd liners at best. Max could be 1st-2nd material, but not DD. He’d have a hard time making some teams, I don’t think DD makes it on Leafs top 2 lines? Someone said I don’t like DD because he’s french, that’s B…s… Lafleur, Lemaire, Savard, Lapointe, Tremblay, Houle, Roy, Cournoyer, all french and great, I liked them because they were good players, I dislike DD because he’s not that good, not because he’s french.

      CH = Les Glorieux!!!

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      A lot of answers will come from playoff performances.
      If 51 plays with Max-Vanek, they need to put up big numbers and it will be interesting to note if 51 can survive the brutal, tough, and tight playoff hockey where referees also put away their whistles.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        I think DD can, MT just needs to continue,putting him in favourable situations.. A strong digger like Cole seems to me to be the type of player he needs, two phenomenal puck control players need to be with DD. His strength is tape to tape passes,through traffic.

        ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  19. 24 Cups says:

    I just ordered my Carey Price jersey from the Hab store (bonus – $35 cheaper than other jerseys). Believe it or not but they are still trying to sell off merchandise featuring Cammalleri and SCOTT GOMEZ. Anybody want to lay down $30 bucks for a Gomez tee shirt? I might just get one so I can use it to clean Faith’s paws after a walk on the wintery streets of Slowville.

  20. Mick says:

    The lines look good but I would change two players.
    1. Bournival in and Briere out.
    2. White in and Moen out.

  21. HabinBurlington says:

    Good news, found some current NHL standings that have us in 2nd place in the entire NHL.

    http://www.ontheforecheck.com/2014/3/14/5508202/nhl-team-websites-ranked-traffic-data-page-views-visits-2014-march

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      HA! Excellent Burly!
      Not everybody knows this, but ostriches also SEE interesting things when they’re hiding down there!
      Why would you ever come back up?!

  22. aHabGrowsInBrooklyn says:

    Bournival to backstop the Habs tomorrow night?

  23. stevieray says:

    Looking at the standings today I see we’re now a Wildcard team …with Philly hot on our heals …time to bear down boys !

  24. Just read this CBC article about Bourque. Some interesting observations. The devil you know or the devil you don’t? What do do: http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/nhl/rene-bourque-is-habs-multi-million-dollar-question-1.2572627

    One question: Do you think Gallagher could spark him to produce? I’m trying to think and can’t remember if they’ve played together at all this season (certainly for no longer than a cup of coffee). Worth a shot?

    Defense wins championships

    “To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible.” St. Thomas Aquinas

  25. Mattyleg says:

    Hey, I just realised the thing I love most about TRADEDEADLINEDAY!

    No longer having to listen to nonsense trade ‘rumours’ and hearing why other team’s plugs would be better than ours.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  26. HUDSONHAB says:

    Oops. Forgot Columbus.

  27. HUDSONHAB says:

    Remember when we kept an eye on Boston for first? Then, Tampa and Toronto for second and third?
    Well now it’s Philly, New York and Detroit for the last wild card spot. Very frustrating.

  28. 24 Cups says:

    I look at those defensive parings (up top) and it makes me feel sad. Especially seeing they are playing in front of a back-up goalie.

    I understand that Gorges is gone for the rest of the regular season.

    I also understand that Beaulieu went back to Hamilton during the Olympics and stumbled.

    However, just take a look at these pairings:

    Markov (fine) – Emelin (brutal beyond words/playing wrong side)
    Bouillon (8th on depth chart) – Subban (not Norris material in ’04)
    Murray (one dimensional) – Tinordi (a kid playing on the wrong side)
    Weaver (we have two guys playing on their wrong side yet he still sits out)

    I hope to hell the guys up front start scoring some goals. Anything less than four points this weekend will be deemed total failure in my book.

  29. No.4isNo.1 says:

    Has anybody heard anything on PK’s contract negotiations? TSN1260 here in Edmonton is reporting this morning (according to my boss, I don’t listen to them) that he is only willing to sign for 2 years and already has his exit strategy planned. They were suggesting Boston, I hoping this is just TSN being TSN.

    Better times are ahead

  30. habs001 says:

    This season the Habs have had a few very good games and a few very bad games but for the majority of the season they have looked the same on the ice regardless of winning the game or losing the game..i have seen very little difference in their game when they were on a winning streak or losing streak…the main difference was that they scored on their scoring chances and the opposition did not…

  31. Ghosts of the Forum says:

    John Lu ‏@JohnLuTSNMtl 36m
    #Habs Therrien says he met in depth with Vanek about playing RW with Pacioretty & Desharnais instead of his preferred LW.

  32. montrealtilldeath says:

    Therrian/Subban – Sick of watching a blind man with no hands trying to cut a diamond. Seeing Larry Robinson behind the Sharks bench made me ill.

    LARRY PLEASE COME HOME! WE NEED YOU!!!

  33. Mr_MacDougall says:

    All the rule changes and suggestions about scoring.. No need for bigger nets, take the defenders best weapon away and scoring would increase…

    The Blue Line. Most ridiculous rule in any sport.. Offside? Like the pressure is on and the puck goes one inch past it and it’s regroup time? Coaching around the blue line has ruined hockey.

    ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

    • GGtheHab says:

      I played in a league with a hybrid blueline…the bluline was in effect entering the zone, but once the zone was gained the center ice red was the blue offside marker…and the puck could be passed from your own zone up to the d blue line-no 2 line pass rule…it was fun and kept the flow of the game going better..

      • krob1000 says:

        There is no two line pass rule anymore. I have played in Roller hockey and ball hockey leagues that have the floating red line but I would not say it improves flow. It definitely improves zone time…but teams still defend the same area (see Olympics)…what it would allow though is to regroup and attack the defended zone with a little more speed more frequently….a guy like PK could wheel back and get going again without being offside.
        I wouldl ove to see this done experimentally. What amazes me is the difference in scoring from Junior Hockey to the AHL…..at all other level jumps there is minimal difference. For a variety of reasons it all changes at PRO…..part of this has to be the size/strength /speed difference (obviously tons of other factors..like goalies, closer talent gap, intellect,etc) …however, one has to start to think maybe there really just isn’t enough room out there once they are men at the speed the game is played these days.

        • Mr_MacDougall says:

          The PK point is exactly what I envisioned.. Similar to ‘driving the lane’ in basketball.. What does the blue line add to the game? Or is the question what does it take away? It’s just always been there.. But why was it implemented in the first place?

          ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        Just the blue line in General, what is it’s purpose? To prevent ‘net hanging’ or a guy swooping in slightly ahead of the play? Imagine chances off the rush without the pesky blue line..

        To me, the blue line is a rule for defence..

        ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  34. 24 Cups says:

    The Hockey News just brought out their latest future watch rankings (it’s in magazine format, I buy it every year). A cautionary note, these rankings are done before Christmas so THN can get them ready for print. Here’s Montreal’s top ten rankings:
    1. Beaulieu
    2. de la Rose
    3. Fucale
    4. Tinordi
    5. McCarron
    6. Lehkonen
    7. Collberg
    8. Hudon
    9. Andrighetto
    10. Reway

    One of those picks has now been traded and four of them are undersized.

    • Ghosts of the Forum says:

      Weird how our two second round picks are ahead of our first round pick…

    • Forum Dog says:

      Thanks for the list. Always a good read those future watch rankings. For me the dark-horse here is Lehkonen. He was great at the WJC last year and showed a lot of intensity. Not the biggest guy in the world, but fast, skilled and plays without fear.

      • sheds88 says:

        i agree forum dog, Lehkonen could be the sleeper pick. but how many times over the years have we been saying…..” not the biggest guy in the world, but …..”

  35. rhino514 says:

    Why give up a fifth rounder for Weaver if Bouillon is just as effective or better?

  36. HabinBurlington says:

    Pittsburgh with more bad injury news. Neal out with concussion.

    http://penguins.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=709447&navid=DL|PIT|home

  37. docketrocket says:

    It is worthwhile continuing M-Ronn’s provocative post about PK Subban from the previous page.

    The only good news that could possibly match the return of a healthy Carey Price would be the return of the 2013 PK Subban. Recapturing his magic would be of greater benefit to the team than any trade we could make, any free agent we could sign, any wonder kid we could draft, and yes, any line combinations HIO regulars could concoct. MB and MT had better fix this, or they will wear it.

    PK does not appear to be injured. Perhaps he is just weary. Weary of being penalized for nothing, of being fouled with impunity, of being maligned unfairly by jackals in the media, of being snubbed by the Olympic brain trust, and of being thrown under the bus by his coach. Perhaps he wants out. Patrick Roy all over again? Does Ian Cobb have any insight?

    No one who loves the Habs should be willing to lose Subban without a fight. He is the most exciting player in Montreal in 20 years. He energizes the fans like no one has in a very long time. He is a superb talent. He is a key part of our present and future. The last thing we need these days is a huge step backwards. And I don’t want to watch him putting the puck in our net for another team for the next 15 years.

    • Cal says:

      He needs to simplify his game and make faster decisions with the puck. If he does that, he’ll be pretty much the Habs #1 Dman again.

    • Strummer says:

      I’d like to see the 2013 Lars Eller and Alexei (Y)emelin.
      Remeber how we collapsed in the playoffs against Ottawa supposedly after losing these 2 to injury?

      How about the Rene Bourque of a couple seasons back?

      All we need is for some guys to play like they are capable of and our problems would be solved.

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

  38. ont fan says:

    Anyone else find it odd that Crosby and Toews had never played against each other before the outdoor game a few weeks ago/

  39. Lil Snapper says:

    I am willing to bet that this team has set the Guiness book of world records for most line juggling in a single season.

  40. Habitoban says:

    White over Prust on the 4th line? Don’t get it. Frankly I’ve lost patience with Prust and his need to have an fight every game, regardless of the context. White, Weisse and Moen look like a much faster, tougher, and more disciplned trio to me.

  41. billylove says:

    Although unofficial, my calculations reveal that the number of line combinations suggested by HIO participants has now exceeded two thousand. Mathematically, it is possible this number could triple in the last few weeks of the regular season. Rumor has it that MT has crashed the mainframe at HQ also trying to find the right line combos!

  42. Mattyleg says:

    Anybody else get sick from staying up late for those western games?

    My chest feels like it’s filled with plaster.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  43. Habs_101 says:

    This is awesome news.

    Offense is now set up to succeed, it should not have taken NEARLY this long, but regardless I am content haha

    Next… defense!

    Why do we have three players in the minors who are better than our roster players? Other top teams dont let this happen… the best players PLAY!… before the playoffs I really hope we see something like this;

    Beaulieu – Subban
    Markov – Emelin
    Tinordi – Gorges
    Murray – Pateryn
    Weaver

    GO HABS GO!

  44. DipsyDoodler says:

    Beaulieu did well when he was here but do we really want Tinordi and Beaulieu in the lineup?

    Tinordi showed nice stuff on Wednesday but his mistake also led to the first Bruins goal, at a time when we were slightly outplaying them. Given our lack of goal scoring we will probably be a safety first team for the rest of the regular season.

    The other D-man who might get called up is Nygren. As soon as the Swedish Elite playoffs end he will be eligible. He’s been tearing it up in Sweden, best offensive defenseman by far, and that league is probably better than the AHL.

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      That is a very intriguing idea Dipsy. I suppose it all depends on how the relationship is between Nygren and the Habs. If indeed the Habs were okay with his reasons for heading back to Sweden, then perhaps he does get a crack (not on the egg line) at the Habs lineup. But if they are not happy with his departure, not only do I not see this happening, but would set a dangerous precedent of a guy taking his toys and going home and then being rewarded.

      • shiram says:

        Pulling a Radulov

        • DipsyDoodler says:

          I think this is very different. Radulov left his NHL club for a lucrative offer in the KHL.

          Many draftees choose to stay in the SHL until they are ready for the NHL. He came to the AHL, didn’t think it was a good fit, and so went back to the SHL.

          —–
          Moving. Forward.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Fair assessment, I also don’t think that cryptic translation given to the media can be the actual reason for him going back to Sweden. If serious bad blood had been created by his departure, chances are Nygren would have been the prospect traded at the deadline.

      • Habfan17 says:

        I would think it was a mutual thing, It freed up a spot in Hamilton for someone else and I agree, the Swedish league is much better than the AHL. The issue there, is sometimes the prospects don’t get as much ice time and their NHL clubs would want, they have less control. In this case, I think it helped both out!

        Habfan17

    • HabsPooch says:

      So we get Raphael Diaz back…not a good idea.

  45. habstrinifan says:

    Am I trolling; am I insulting fellow posters; am I being a heel; am I just an arsehole; am i just being too negative;…… I really do not know how to post anymore. I mean I wanna be a nice guy. I wanna feel welcomed..part of the club.

    But when I see, today on March 14th/2014 a poster whom I like and think is a very very fair minded person… and someone who brings a great deal of interest and pleasure to this site… when I see that poster say this,

    “The entire second line (Pleks-Gio-Briere) need to start lighting it up.”.

    … it makes me react like this.. which then makes me feel bad for offending people.

    Am I being unfair. I mean today March 14/2014… we can with a realistic sense of optimism say “… lighting i up”. Heck I dont know if that trio qualifies as a freakin line yet… by period #1 min 18:22 it probably would have only been some jottings of mt’s juggling notepad.

    Sorry ! Sorry ! Sorry!

    • shiram says:

      I don’t like that line either, for whatever that’s worth.

    • Timo says:

      I know one thing for sure Trin… you need a massage today.

    • Shackles says:

      It reminds me of that TV commercial for that magnetic bracelet which shows a bunch of people enjoying life and this older fella is blowing out the candles on his birthday cake and exclaims; “I’m lighting it up!”

      …Trini, you never have to worry about any of your concerns mentioned above; you’re part of a classy group of HIO contributors.

    • New says:

      You’re not trolling. Everyone’s got opinions about sport. They are interesting. Lots of times people disagree or agree. It is when we take it all too seriously that we need to step back. In this world there are real events, planes missing, arguments over sovereignty prompting armed insurrection and incursion, bandits killing, raping, and ransoming villagers in god’s name, countries, and nations in conflict. Hockey is a distraction. We need that.

  46. Mattyleg says:

    A question about the ‘possession defenceman’ discussion below.
    I decided to move it up here because I’m interested in people’s input.

    A ‘possession defenceman’ is judged, from what I understand, by the amount of shots against vs. the amount of shots for.

    I was told that a defenceman influences how much the forwards shoot by getting them the puck.

    My questions:
    But is this proveable?
    What if the forward wins the puck himself?
    What if the defenceman wins the puck all the time but the forwards don’t shoot?

    As far as I’m concerned, a ‘possession defenceman’ is something invented by a ‘hockey insider’ to make him appear more ‘in touch’ and ‘analytical’, when it’s actually just so much ‘smoke up the wazoo’.

    Thoughts?

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • HabinBurlington says:

      It is dependant on whether or not his active stick allows him to make plays on the half boards all the while maintaining tremendous composure.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Shot differential, prorated for quality of competition and zonal starts, is an imperfect measure of something that is real. A defenceman who retrieves and gets the puck out of his zone, makes crisp passes to attackers, or is able to skate with the puck.

      So is it a real thing? Yes. Is it easily quantifiable? Kind of. If you had to guess who would be the two Habs d-men who fit the bill?

      Also, I think this is the only kind of defenceman you want. I don’t believe there is a role for “shut down defencemen”. I’d go with 3 Markovs and 3 Subbans.

      But that’s just me.

      —–
      Moving. Forward.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        The right kind of shut down dman is good. I’m thinking of the Rick Green, Craig Ludwig types.

        Absolutely PK and Markov are our only puck possession type dman presently. However, I am pleasantly surprised to see that Tinordi has improved in carrying the puck up the ice. Beaulieu if/when he makes it, will be another puck possession type. Gorges is a tweener who doesn’t fall into puck possession nor Shut down, but in his absence we find out he was indeed effective.

    • Loop_Garoo says:

      I like stats, but in a game like hockey, there are so many factors that are simply not measurable. A defenceman may rarely touch the puck but be in positions where is forcing awkward passes, creating more turnovers, reducing the quality of the shot taken etc. Stats are fun to play with, but anyone who thinks they can get a complete picture of a player using just stats, simply does not understand hockey. Measuring the time a defenceman has the puck, is he “puck possession” guy, has little value if the defenceman in question doesnt play the puck, but causes difficulties for the opposing team, then gets off the ice so a more offensively minded defenseman can join the rush.

    • christophor says:

      Which line of reasoning is more thorough?

      (1) Player X is good because he’s a physical presence; he hits and clears the crease.

      (2) Stats from hundreds of games over several years show that the Habs severely outshoot and outchance their opponents when players Y and Z are on but are severely outshot and outchanced by their opponents when player X in on. (Also, these stats are detailed enough to compare a player’s performance when paired with different players, so that we can more confidently determine what that player’s individual effect is.)

      You’ve come on these boards and proposed (1) a lot of times. But now you have the gall to say that (2) is no “proveable”, as in less evidence-based? I’ll take the in-depth, hours-long analysis over lazy, vague, and unanalyzed use of ideas like “physical presence” and “crease clearing”.

      • Mattyleg says:

        Here’s some more gall for ya:

        ‘Possession defencemen’ are a myth. They are bugbears created by advanced stat-lovers to justify their preference of numbers to watching actual hockey.

        Watching actual hockey indicates that it’s good to have a defenceman who can move opposing players from the front of the crease. Do I require reams of statistics to prove this? No I do not. Just my eyes and the common sense of millions of years of human evolution are needed.

        As far as ‘thorough-ness’ goes, nothing can be more thorough than empirically-observed phenomena, while nothing can be more subjective than a pile of numbers.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • christophor says:

          What’s subjective about being badly outchanced and outshot when a certain player is on the ice, no matter who he plays with and what team he plays for? Controlling for those kinds of conditions (i.e. teammates and teams) is exactly what good, scientific analysis does.

          And if you don’t think a whole lot of science is deeply statistical, then you don’t know much about science. I’m not sure when statistics got a bad rep, but it’s not the numbers alone that say things but the conclusions they help support: numbers + argument = reasonable discussion (though mathematical reasoning is only one way to discuss things reasonably).

        • christophor says:

          Millions of years of viewing a very narrowly defined scenario (crease clearing in hockey) that has only existed for how many decades?

          Not sure you get evolutionary biology.

          By the way, there’s a whole lot of people who believe basically any position you can think of. You’re wrong that there’s a consensus. Consensus wouldn’t guarantee you anything anyway.Over time, there are sweeping changes in how we view politics, social studies, sports, (science), etc. I’m happy to be part of where the analysis of hockey is going.

          • Mattyleg says:

            Where on earth did I say there was any kind of consensus on anything?

            And where did I mention science?

            Numbers can be used to support conflicting conclusions.

            And the millions of years to which I referred created the common sense to which I also referred.

            Wait…are you sure you actually read my post…?

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

  47. Mattyleg says:

    Dave Stubbs ‏@Dave_Stubbs 1m

    Eller glad to be back w/ Galchenyuk, Gallagher but said he wasn’t “hoping” for it. Paraphrase: Good players should be able to play w/ anyone

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Very mature response by Eller.

    • Timo says:

      I would paraphrase this as follows: “Therrien will never keep this line together for more than 2 shifts”

    • Maksimir says:

      For people who bash MT… and I do too occasionally and those who pound on DD (me too sometimes)… and those who say MT ruined Eller… probably forget that DD started on the 3rd line and produced steadily until they had no choice but to promote him… unlike Eller.

      • UnkleGary says:

        Maybe I’m wrong but didn’t DD have one assist in the first 20 games and MT broke up the EGG line, which was playing well and producing, to get him going?

        CH-eers!

        • Mattyleg says:

          The EGG line produced well for the first three to five games and then disappeared.
          Then it was broken up.

          There’s a lot of revisionist history going around.

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • HabinBurlington says:

            Hang on, are you next going to tell me that Humpty Dumpty had a big fall?

          • Mattyleg says:

            All of the posters and all MT’s men
            Couldn’t put Eller together again.

            ;)

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • Forum Dog says:

            There is no denying that Desharnais got a lot more time to sort himself out, and has always had MTL’s best scorer on his LW. That is not revisionist.

            There is a lot of “revisionist” history going around though. The EGG line was still together 18 games in, at which point Eller had 12 points, Gallagher had 12 points, and Galchenyuk had 14.

          • Mattyleg says:

            HA!

            Oh, you sly Forum Dog, you…

            That was a very nice manipulation of statistics!
            You counted all the way to the game where Eller got 3 points, Gally got 2 points, and Chucky got 3 points.

            So you’re saying that after 17 games, then (before that game), that Eller had 9 points (6 in his first 3 games), Chucky had 11 points (5 in his first 3 games) and Gally had 10 points (3 in his first 3 games).

            Just to recap, in 14 games together after the initial outburst and before the game where they produced, Eller: 3 points; Chucky: 6 points; Gally: 7 points.

            That’s why the line was broken up, methinks.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • Forum Dog says:

            You got me…..

            Gallagher didn’t start playing with Pacioretty and Desharnais until the 19th of November, shortly after Desharnais sat out. The EGG line was still playing pretty good hockey at that point, especially considering they were three of the youngest players on the roster.

            Stats are meant to be manipulated, and I used them to make a point. I simply disagree on why the line was broken up. I think (without purposefully being revisionist) that the rationale at the time was they needed to get Desharnais and Pacioretty going, and Gallagher was the man to do it. And it worked.

            Not questioning the move, just the idea that somehow the EGG line was the problem. If you cast back to November of 2013, you’ll probably recall that it wasn’t.

          • Mattyleg says:

            You’re right, it wasn’t a problem, but it wasn’t producing as a first line, which is what it was being used as, and changes needed to happen across the board, I think.

            I’m just reacting to the concept that the EGG line was amazing and Therrien was an idiot to break it up when it was so successful.

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • Forum Dog says:

            Therrien takes a lot of undeserved flack, and you’re point about the EGG line not producing like a 1st line is true. That is one of the biggest reasons MTL is stuck in the basement when it comes to 5-on-5 scoring. They don’t have a first line. Period. Not the EGG line, not Pacioretty-Desharnais-Gallagher, not Briere-Plekanec-Gionta. Nothing. Outside of Pacioretty and (now) Vanek, they have a bunch of 2nd, 3rd and 4th liners. No offense to Plekanec, but he is not (and has never been) a 1st line guy.

            I’m interested to see how Pacioretty-Desharnais-Vanek play for a full game, since I think that is the closest thing to a 1st line they’ve had all year.

            Good dialogue. I’ll stop here since it’s getting stretched out. Peace….

          • Mattyleg says:

            Nice one!

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • shiram says:

      That’s a good one, and I don’t mean to overshadow you, but I prefer this one from Stubbs :

      Dave Stubbs ‏@Dave_Stubbs 1h

      Full session thus far for #Habs Price. #Habs goalie’s post-Sochi return seems absolutely likely this weekend #HabsIO

    • rhino514 says:

      I love the way Eller speaks since last year. Very mature for his age.
      His huge slump is not for lack of character, whatever it is. It´s totally a confidence issue.
      I still hold out hope that he will be a more effective player byt he time the playoffs come round. If not, he probably just needs a fresh start next year.

  48. Max says:

    The team needs two wins this weekend to keep pace.No exceptions and no loser points.4 points plain and simple.

  49. Chrisadiens says:

    I hope this hasn’t been already asked, but what does Timo think about MT?

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

  50. Plekasuares says:

    Hate to say it. Eller is not the same player at the start of the year. This line won’t stay :(

  51. Maritime Ronn says:

    @JohnLuTSNMtl:
    Short ice battle drills, #Habs Price knocked down in crease, first by Bourque, then by Gallagher. Price gives Gallagher a shot afterward.

  52. HabsWin-nipeg says:

    Starting tomorrow, the Habs play 9 games in 14 nights, which might account for the days off we’ve been seeing.

    SAT, 15 MAR 2014 SENATORS CANADIENS 7:00
    SUN, 16 MAR 2014 CANADIENS SABRES 7:00
    TUE, 18 MAR 2014 AVALANCHE CANADIENS 7:30
    THU, 20 MAR 2014 BLUE JACKETS CANADIENS 7:30
    SAT, 22 MAR 2014 CANADIENS MAPLE LEAFS 7:00
    MON, 24 MAR 2014 CANADIENS BRUINS 7:30
    TUE, 25 MAR 2014 SABRES CANADIENS 7:30
    THU, 27 MAR 2014 CANADIENS RED WINGS 7:00
    SAT, 29 MAR 2014 CANADIENS PANTHERS 7:00

    • shiram says:

      I think the best thing out of this is no 10:30 starts.

    • Strummer says:

      Only the 2 games this weekend are back-to-back so it’s a manageable schedule.

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

    • Timo says:

      They will be very fatigued.

    • Forum Dog says:

      Down the proverbial “stretch”. 5 games against teams they are battling for playoff positions (if you include Ottawa). 3 games against potential spoilers, and 1 game against a good out of conference opponent. Got to make some hay here. If they can pull out even 12 of a possible 18 points, they will have a pretty good chance going into April.

      Note they are now technically in a wildcard position, 6 points up on a Detroit team that has two games in hand.

  53. SmartDog says:

    Question: If Timo’s wish came true and Therrien was fired… who would be the best replacement.

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

  54. SmartDog says:

    I am excited about the EGG line being together and Vanek being on a scoring line. If this works, I’ll TOTALLY say Therrien is an ass! (Had you fooled!) Because half the people on HIO were shouting for these two things to happen. It takes us going 8 periods without a goal for him to realize his forward lines are a problem.

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

  55. Storm Man says:

    Why would he leave Boston?

  56. DipsyDoodler says:

    While we’re making up lines.

    Anyone else intrigued by a Gally-Plex-Gally line?

    Then you could pair Eller with Gionta and your choice of Moen, Prust or Bournival.

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

    • Forum Dog says:

      I like this idea a lot actually. Best young players with probably the best vet. Gionta is much better suited to the 3rd line and might even be able to help Eller figure things out.

      Might be worth giving the EGG line a shot at recapturing past glory, but if they stumble I’d love to see MT try something like this.

    • shiram says:

      Yup that sounds good, as I’m not sold on a Brière/Pleks/Gio line.
      They had some success before, but then Therrien would always have to sub in Moen at one point or another.

  57. The_Franchise31 says:

    Has a team ever been in a playoff position, traded for an elite scorer and missed the playoffs before?

  58. twilighthours says:

    I just scored tickets for Ray LaMontagne at Massey Hall.

    Booya.

  59. Ghosts of the Forum says:

    For the love of God, where is Beaulieau?

    • Mr_MacDougall says:

      Remember when PK kicked in the door during the playoff run when Markov’s knee exploded? I get the feeling he has to take it upon himself to make them keep him with spectacular plays to be kept.. I’m not sure coaching and management want him in the NHL now.

      ~~ Plekanec at the Disco ~~

  60. The Jackal says:

    It’s 12:14 pm on Friday March 14, 2013.
    I can confirm that MT is in fact still the coach.

    Sorry Timo.

    ______________________
    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  61. zip by says:

    well said sir!

    [in response the the walrus]

  62. Forum Dog says:

    Some rough analysis on Habs 2014-15 cap situation from CBC. Notes that pretty much any way you slice it they will have around $11M to add 6-7 skaters (doesn’t account for re-signing of Gio, Eller or Vanek). It assumes that PK and Markov (or a replacement) are signed, which would give the Habs 4 established D-men (PK, Markov, Emelin, Gorges).

    http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/nhl/rene-bourque-is-habs-multi-million-dollar-question-1.2572627

  63. 24 Cups says:

    Here’s a look at the rest of Montréal’s schedule for this season (15 games)

    8 games against direct conference playoff competitors

    4 games against bottom feeders

    3 games against top end teams

    7 games at home

    8 games on the road

    2 sets of back-to-back games

    All four games tonight featuring New Jersey, Washington, Detroit and the NYR are against non-playoff teams.

  64. grizzles says:

    3 of the 20 WORST possession defencemen in the league are in our top 6.

    that is all.

    #freebeaulieu

    • Timo says:

      What’s a possession defenceman? As in how soon they turn over the puck?

      • SmartDog says:

        They play like they’re possessed.
        No surprise we’re the worst at it.

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

        • grizzles says:

          haha not quite. I mean in terms of their possession stats. Shots for vs shots against while that player is on the ice ect..

          • twilighthours says:

            You know that fenwick or corsi don’t actually measure possession, right?

          • Mattyleg says:

            How does a defenceman influence how many shots the forwards take?

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • twilighthours says:

            Matty: by regaining the puck and giving to the forwards or otherwise helping to advance it up the ice.

          • grizzles says:

            an example is: Douglas Murray is on the ice for astoundingly more shots against than shots for = bad possession player. he and his teammates possess the puck far less when he is on the ice as opposed to when he isn’t

      • Mattyleg says:

        A defenceman with lots of possessions.
        They’re also called Materialistic Defencemen.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • Chrisadiens says:

          Hahah!

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

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Mathieu Schneider strikes me as having been a materialistic defenceman, in fact I think Cammy would have been a materialistic forward. The Dapper Dans of the NHL, trying to think of who on the present roster has that flare, perhaps PK or Prust?

  65. sprague cleghorn says:

    They are the EGG line, (woo)
    They are the EGG line, (woo)
    They’ll play the Walrus.

    … ‘ow could we forget that?

  66. Timo says:

    What would be a huge boost of confidence to the team if Bergevin put some big boy pants on and canned Therrien and got them some actual NHL coach… not a beer league buffoon.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Ohhh Timo still remembers his line! Keep repeating it Timo!

    • 24 Cups says:

      Timo – Who do you have in mind? Can the new coach get Carey Price back in the line-up? :)

      • Timo says:

        Don’t know man. If I were paid millions to tour from city to city, sit in the box and watch games and read profiles of potential candidates I would be able to tell who I had in mind. Because I don’t care to invest a minute of my time doing this for free I don’t. How about Claude Julien… seems like a good coach.

        • Mattyleg says:

          I have a feeling that if you were paid millions to tour from city to city etc, you would still be on here all the time.

          That would work out great, because then we could help you by telling you to fire every coach you hired.

          And I seem remember you being on the frontlines of the Fire Julien brigade too…

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • 24 Cups says:

          Claude Julien – I love it, Timo!

    • The Jackal says:

      I know he forgot to call you to go to dinner when the Habs were in Calgary, and he said he would, but it’s been a while now man, can’t hold a grudge for that long. Specially not after he sent his apologies with DD in person.

      ______________________
      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  67. CJ says:

    I like the lines today. I still don’t think it is our best lineup – but it is better. Personally, I would play White over Moen on the fourth line and would like to see Beaulieu over Frankie on defence.

    Sorry to be so candid, but why did it take the coaching staff three games to figure out that Vanek would not work with Pleks and Gionta?

    As Bournival returns to health, Briere better start getting things in gear. I have read the statistics about how he is a leader in points vs icetime, but, IMO, I just don’t see it. At the end of the day he is a one dimensional player, brought here to produce points. Thus far he has 21 points on the season, of which 10 (nearly 50%) have occurred during FOUR games. Sorry, but there is no other way to slice it. That is not acceptable at $4 million a season.

    The entire second line (Pleks-Gio-Briere) need to start lighting it up. Briere had a three point game against the Sens in Montreal this season. Hopefully he can repeat that performance and build on that success down the stretch.

    At the beginning of the season I had moderate expectations of the signing. I thought Briere would be able to generate 20 goals and 20 assists over 70+ games. Not great and not worth $4 million, but these were my expectations. As low as they were, to fall beneath this total would be a major dissappointment.

    One more year to go…..

    • twilighthours says:

      Stop apologizing for candor. It’s how we roll around here.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      You may not like the answer, but coaches have to have to some respect for the veterans on their team. To that, Plex/Gio got the first crack with Vanek. Same thing, Moen hasn’t been worse than White and is a vet, no issues from me if the choice was Moen over Whitey. Frankie is here, its his last year here, and perhaps he will soon enough be usurped by Beaulieu. But in Frankie’s defence he has played only one game in a very long stretch. If Frankie sucks, he will find his way back to the hotdog stand.

      If a coach starts not having any respect for the vets, the room will indeed be lost in a heartbeat.

      • DipsyDoodler says:

        Very good points.

        I’d add that Vanek has repeatedly said he is a left winger. However having seen his passing and his willingness to go to the net, he would benefit form being on a line with a sniper, and we have only one of those.

        —–
        Moving. Forward.

      • CJ says:

        No denying that we are certainly taking the nice guy approach. I spoke to this subject earlier in the week. I would advise caution though. There is a fine line between showing respect by playing vets and failing to recognize when someone is finished and needs to be moved, health scratched or otherwise demoted within the lineup.

        I am not inside the dressing room, but it must be clear to the players that there are different rules for different people. In a sense I agree with that. I have different rules for my employees and hold them to different standards. That said, it’s a juggling act and when the balls drop…..

    • Gally Fan says:

      Agree. We need Beaulieu back. Bournival fits in great with Plek and Gio or with White and Weise.

    • grizzles says:

      we haven’t dressed our best possible lineup once this whole season

    • Habfan17 says:

      Hi CJ, I like the lines too! It can only help ptches to have a threat like Vanek on the line. It also gives DD two options to dish too! Not having the drive ad energy of Gallgher may hurt a bit. It will be good to see if the EGG line can find the chemistry they had at the beginning of the year! I like Moen, Prust and Wiese too! I would be happy with Prust, White and Weise as well.

      Habfan17

    • krob1000 says:

      RE Briere…yes he is one dimensional…and was bourhgt here to produce offense and has not really been given a shot to do so since beginning of the season. Early on…he was awful..plain awful…took hima while to find his legs. Lately thoguh he has been as expected. IMO he could replicate DD nuymbers and he is no more one dimensional than Glachenyuk or DD, offensively…then you look at White, Moen, Parros, Prust……all one diemensional as well but in diff’t ways. So the real question is if Briere was not bourght in to be a pp guy and top 6 player why bring him in at all? BRiere has gotten stronger as time ahs gone on and no longer looks slow out there…he may be somewhat lsot at times but the fact he has played all three possituions with revolving linemates and in limited minutes may be a valid excuse for that though. I think if HAbs did not get Vanek you may have seen BRiere eventually wiggle his way onto that line with DD-Patch. MT still puts Briere out in clutch situations down a goal late in games,etc…the line of BRiere-Pleks-Gio I belive (someone posted a while back) is actually one of the HAbs most successful combos this season.

      • CJ says:

        If Briere-Pleks-Gionta is our most successful line, we are not going anywhere. Briere has ZERO points in his last six games and is a minus five. Stretching the sample size, he had a three-point game against the Pens, which counts towards his total of 4 points in our last 12 games. That pace would give him 27 points for the season. Again, aside from 4 multi point games, he has been largely invisible. I understand that the same can be said of others, but at $4 million dollars, our hired gun has been shooting blanks.

        • krob1000 says:

          ONE OF the most successful combos…ahve they been together for this stretch? then wath is the relevance of thos enumbes. We have all seen DD numbers over his 21 game stretch ina diff’t role and depending on usage. Briere has had much more jump of late….still being moved all over…virtually whole team is minus lately

  68. HabinBurlington says:

    Would be a huge boost of confidence for the boys if Price could start.

    • CJ says:

      Absolutely. Night and day.

      I would so one step further. I don’t think that there is a player in the league more valuable to his team than Price is to Montreal.

  69. Bash says:

    Well at least MT reads HIO.
    Now that he’s listening to us we may have a chance!

    “If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” (anon)

  70. jimmy shaker says:

    This is our only chance of getting second spot in the division. Carey buddy, buckle up and get ready for 13 out of the next 15 games. “Let’s put the women and children to bed and go lookin for dinner”.

    Shaker out!

  71. The Jackal says:

    Screw it, I’m hopping on the bandwagon.

    Fire MT!

    ______________________
    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • twilighthours says:

      It’s about time. He really isn’t that good a coach.

    • Chrisadiens says:

      Dropping like flies! :)

      Is Matty on the bandwagon yet?

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

      • HabinBurlington says:

        This is a hard jump for me, I’m still trying to avoid the Stanley Cup Bandwagon which has been racing around Southern Ontario recently. It really ramped up at about 1am this morning. Fricking thing is so rickety I can hear it in BUrlington even though it is doing circles around Rob Ford’s house in Etobicoke.

        • The Jackal says:

          Ugh tell me about it.
          I was watching the game at this sports bar and all the laff fans were cheering so loudly, like they won a playoff series.
          Just the other day the wheels had fallen off after being mauled by the Sharks. Today the Leafs are cup contenders.

          ______________________
          Hockey sine stercore tauri.

        • Chrisadiens says:

          I feel bad for ya Burly, and any other HIOers in the GTA.

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

          • HabinBurlington says:

            It’s not so bad, more something we Hab fans here like to complain about. Truth be told, most of my good friends whom are Leaf fans, are very realistic and are great to talk hockey with. Every team has it’s share of fans who are extreme, and it is those extreme Leaf fans who are annoying. But I am generally surrounded by pretty bright Leaf fans, who have learned how to laugh at their teams plight. We Habs fans haven’t had a whole lot more to cheer about in recent years, so the differences between us are dwindling.

      • Mattyleg says:

        YES!!

        (wait, is this the ‘Bring Back The “I’m not going to pay a lot for this muffler” Commercials’ discussion board?)

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

  72. SmartDog says:

    Wow – Vanek with Patches and DD.
    What an AMAZING idea!
    Therrien is a GENIUS!

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

    • The Jackal says:

      Hey Doggy, agree with what you said about separatists, thankfully those sentiments are on the way out, but they have fuel to burn because of the RoC’s attitude towards Quebecers in general (not separatists) and the past failures of constitutional reform.

      It’s flabbergasting that this has been an issue since 1867, and what is even more absurd is that a federal state like Canada has not been able to adequately accommodate a province that is clearly a distinct society with different cultural values. That is not to say the two cultures can’t intermingle, but the current state of affairs is bad for everyone. I guarantee that the day this is resolved, separatists will be a dying breed.
      Canada is a great country and Quebec is better off as part of the nation it founded, and vice versa.

      ______________________
      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

      • SmartDog says:

        I don’t get it. It seems to me Canada bends over backwards for Quebec. Bill 101 is a VERY unique and powerful law in a democracy. It’s given a lot of rights – and taken away many (like that of my envious friends who want their kids to be bilingual but they are not ALLOWED to go to an English school).
        Quebec – or rather the bullies that run it – just smell blood and want more, more, more. And they want to focus on that INSTEAD of the economy, instead of education, instead of the integrity of the province. There’s no “resolving” that. Is there?
        ————————————-
        Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

    • SC-24 says:

      SD- He would have been more of a Genius if he had put the two Gally’s with Plekenac. instead of putting them with a 3rd line center.

      Really I couldn’t care what he does. MT is trying very hard to ruin the two Gally’s like he did Eller, Mind ya, I never was a Eller fan.

  73. CJ says:

    Welcome back Carey!

  74. Mattyleg says:

    As I have said since the season started…… shut. up.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—


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