Prust will be game-time decision for Habs in Tampa (with practice video)

The Canadiens practised Tuesday morning in Brossard before boarding a flight to Tampa for Game 1 of their first-round playoff series against the Lightning on Wednesday night (7 p.m., CBC, RDS, TSN Radio 690).

Brandon Prust, who missed the last 12 games of the regular season with an upper-body injury, skated on a line with Tomas Plekanec and Brendan Gallagher, but coach Michel Therrien said Prust would be a game-time decision Wednesday.

“We’re not sure yet whether (Prust) will play,” Therrien told reporters after practice. “We’ll see tomorrow.”

Travis Moen, who is still recovering from a concussion, wore a no-contact jersey in practice and skated on a fifth line with Ryan White and George Parros. Moen will travel with the team to Tampa.

Linemate Gallagher is hoping Prust will be back.

“Getting Prust back into the lineup is going to be big for us,” Gallagher told reporters after practice. “He’s a guy who shows up and plays for his teammates every night. We’ve played well together in the past and it’s a lot of fun playing with him. Hopefully we can have success together and help the team. As a team, we need to do a good job playing defensively. (Steven) Stamkos is a really good player. He will get his chances and create things and it’s up to us to make it tough for him.”

Daniel Briere, who was signed to a two-year, $8-million free-agent contract last summer in part because of his playoff success, centred the fourth line with Michael Bournival and Dale Weise. In 108 career playoff games, Briere has 109 points, including 50 goals.

“When I prepare, what I’m thinking is that I want to be the guy that makes the big play,” Briere said. “I want the puck when the game’s on the line. It’s not about thinking that I’m a playoff performer or that I’m better than anyone. I wish it was clearer or that there was a better explanation, but there really isn’t.”

Briere finished 10th in team scoring with 13-12-25 totals in 69 regular-season games while averaging 12:46 of ice time and was plus-1.

“When I was younger, the preparation wasn’t the same, my focus wasn’t the same,” the 36-year-old Briere said about his early days in the NHL. “How I reacted was different  After playing in so many games, you learn to deal with pressure. I expect there will be some butterflies in my first (playoff) game with the Canadiens, but I’m ready for it.”

Here’s how the lines and defence pairings looked at practice Tuesday:

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

Gorges-Subban
Markov-Emelin
Tinordi-Murray
Bouillon-Weaver

“We need contribution from everybody,” Therrien said after practice. “We can’t only rely on one line.”

In Tampa, goalie Ben Bishop, who missed the last three games of the regular season with an elbow injury, didn’t practise with his teammates Tuesday and won’t be ready to play in Game 1. Ryan Malone, who was arrested on the weekend and charged with DUI and cocaine possession, didn’t practise, either.

Forwards Valtteri Filppula (lower-body injury) and Ondrej Palat (upper body) both practised Tuesday and are listed as day-to-day. Forward Teddy Purcell, who has been battling the flu, also skated.

(Gazette file photo/John Kenney)

Lightning, Habs find little room for separation, NHL.com

Postseason is Briere’s time to shine, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

Habs vs. Lightning should be a treat, by The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs

Habs will fight fire with fire, Canadiens.com

Post-practice interviews (video), Canadiens.com

Setting the playoff mood, Canadiens.com

Number Cruncher: Secret Weapons, Canadiens.com

Tale of the Tape, tampabaylightning.com

Habs focus on special teams, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

Lightning season tumultous but rewarding for Stamkos, Tampa Bay Times

How can Habs shut down Stamkos?Stu on Sports blog

Attitude, work ethic helped Lightning goalie Lindback survive struggles, Tampa Bay Times

Lightning’s Vinik a model owner, Tampa Bay Times

Lightning’s Callahan renews friendly rivalry with Habs’ Gionta, Tampa Bay Times

Scotty Bowman weighs in on current Habs, Stu on Sports blog

Being only Canadian team in playoffs a good sign for Habs? Stu on Sports blog

Video-game simulation has Bruins winning Cup, montrealgazette.com

HI/O Summit Facebook Page

736 Comments

  1. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …can someOne here explain ‘the purpose’ of this year’s World Hockey Championship competition ?

    …the epitome of meaninglessness ?

    …am I wrong ?

  2. HabFab says:

    Florida gets 1st pick.

    Buffalo 2nd, Edmonton 3rd, Leafs 8th.

  3. Psycho29 says:

    YIKES! Burkie has the mad professor look on the TSN Draft Lottery show…..

  4. Psycho29 says:

    YIKES! Burke has the mad professor look on the TSN Draft Lottery Show….

  5. B says:

    2:46 into the 2nd period, Nevins and Maggio have a rematch. Still no score, shots are 13-7 for the Dogs.

    http://dropyourgloves.com/fights/GameEvents.aspx?Game=446776&Fight=426528#Fight426528

    –Go Habs Go!–

  6. Psycho29 says:

    TSN Fantasy Hockey Pool…
    Open to all residents of Canada EXCEPT Quebec

    Grrrrrrr

  7. Habitant in Surrey says:

    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Montreal-Canadiens-We-Are-Fans-Summit/197390760316125?id=197390760316125&sk=photos_stream

    …any of You whom have attended previous HIO Summits may visit Our Facebook site to download photos from Our photo section

    …I enhanced most photos to make them brighter, and help Y’all to resemble the George Clooneys and Angelina Jolies of this World (heh heh) …feel free to DL any as a souvenir

    …available as well is a video of ‘good times’ spent in Hurley’s …video graphed by Brian Proctor/BriPro

    …ZERO that can be used for blackmail, unfortunately :)

  8. habs_54321 says:

    i see briere is still on the fourth line going into the playoffs

  9. Bob_Sacamano says:

    I still can´t stand Therrien and I honestly feel we should do much better than dressing Bouillon or having Gorges on the 2nd pp or… From tomorrow on I´ll try not to care too much. I want this team to win and I want this team eventually to stop the damn Bruins.

    Go Habs go and
    JFT96!

  10. habtastic74 says:

    So, I feel that my life would be more complete with a Habs necktie. It’s the only way to profess my undying love for them during the work day. Unfortunately, I have searched the internet far and wide and only found one Canadiens necktie, and it is like a hundred bucks. Anyone happen to have any inside info on where I can find one for a reasonable price? Not living in Canada is probably part of my problem.

  11. B says:

    No score after 1 in the Dogs vs Monsters game, but Nevins 2:21 into his 2nd AHL game had his first pro fight vs Daniel Maggio. Not sure yet how he fared, but I expect he at least held his own.

    –Go Habs Go!–

  12. sheds88 says:

    it feels like christmas eve

  13. Habcouver says:

    Isn’t the focus on Habs hockey great?
    RDS’ Francois Gagnon on TSN. The analysis and views are interesting.

    We Are (Not) All Canucks.
    Proudly Canadian but passionately Canadien!

  14. Millsie says:

    Thanks habfan!

  15. habbernack says:

    I just watched an interview with Patrick Roy and I think MB missed the boat on his coaching decision. Landescog the captain says that to a player they are TOTALLY behind their coach. He knows how to develop players. He coached the juniors for 10 years.
    I hope to see them in cup finals.If not the habs then it’e Colorado for me

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I am not a big MT fan, however, couldn’t help but notice MT spent 5 years in the Juniors winning once, while PR spent 8 years in the Juniors losing in the finals once.

      MT also has spent parts of 7 seasons in the AHL.

      Perhaps the NHL is indeed changing, the players have more power/influence on the coaches than ever before. Indeed relationships between coaches and players has probably never been more important.

      Having said that, we have not seen Patrick go through a difficult season in the Pros and how the relationship between players and coach evolved.

      Patrick is very deserving of credit, and perhaps even moreso for being smart to be patient enough to have his first job be in the right scenario. Colorado was a team ripe with young talent ready to improve, and to Roy’s credit he allowed that talent to show itself.

      • D Mex says:

        From all appearances, Roy has turned out to be a pleasant surprise in terms of the work he has put in with Colorado.

        Prior to Therrien being hired, however, there were reports that Roy had expressed that a condition of going behind the bench in Montréal was having a say in player transactions. Maybe true – maybe not, but this kind of arrangement was mentioned when Sakic hired him.

        So, to extend on habbernack’s post, ” MB missed the boat ” by not hiring Roy to do his (MB’s) job. Who wouldn’t have done the same thing ?

        ALWAYS Habs –
        D Mex

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Agree, also Sakic has far more security in Colorado, has more patience from fans etc… than MB faces in Montreal. For MB to have hired a coach who wanted some control of player personal just wasn’t a fit.

          And while I wasn’t happy with the choice of MT, I do wish MT the best and hope the team has a great playoffs. I recognize this would mean more of MT, but maybe he is a better coach than I and others give credit for.

          • Prop says:

            In my opinion, it would have been a huge risk for the Habs to put Roy as the head coach. It could have easily blown up in the organizations face, then they’re back to square one. Maybe in a few years Roy could be the HC of the Habs, but they had no choice but to play it safe.

            ____________________
            DOOOOOOOOOOOOMED!

          • johnnylarue says:

            Yup. And the Avs impressive season aside, let’s get one thing straight: when it comes to giving good interview, Roy is in a different league altogether. He’s so well-spoken and compelling in his answers in a way Therrien simply can’t compete with.

            This facility with PR gives him a definite edge where public perception is concerned. Therrien is, by comparison, strictly workmanlike.

        • habcertain says:

          I think a lot of folks under estimated the level of maturity that Roy has brought to the position. I believe many viewed him as a hot head that would blow easily but that has not been the case. The bottom line is players like him, and will play for him and in today’s game, that is the recipe for success. By choice, the Habs field of candidates is restricted and to miss a top tier person is not a good thing. Not only do the Habs need to develop players, French coaches are just as an important part to our overall success, not an issue for other teams.

          • D Mex says:

            The Habs market calls for a * bilingual * coach.
            It’s improbable a ‘ French ‘ coach, ie : someone from France, would cut it in Montreal or anywhere else in the NHL right now. However, it’s quite a different story with French Canadian coaches …

            ALWAYS Habs –
            D Mex

          • habcertain says:

            France is an emerging hockey market…..I was referring to the ability to speak French, I don’t think French Canadian is a language. I

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I held that opinion as well but its now water under the bridge. I think Bergevin went with the “safe” choice in hiring MT and its hard to argue with the success the team has had thus far.

      Eventually MT and Patrick will be fired from their respective positions. If the timing is right I’m sure Roy will be on the short list.

  16. Millsie says:

    Thank you Stephen and habcertain

  17. Millsie says:

    Just down in Phoenix for the week, can anyone offer up a live stream for the game tomorrow ?
    My prediction: Habs will split the games in Tampa, come back to The Bell and win both, then loose game five, back to The Bell and wrap it up in six!!
    So ya if anyone has a live stream for tomorrow or knows of a sports bar in Scottsdale that caters to Habs fans. It would be much appreciated.
    Thank you!

  18. Say Ash says:

    I don’t get it. CBC is showing both early games tomorrow?

  19. DipsyDoodler says:

    Are you kidding me?

    A snow storm?

    What the ?

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

  20. B says:

    As the Bulldogs’ season winds down, Greg Pateryn ranks 2nd in goals among AHL D men with 15. The Dogs have 2 games left, tonight at 7:00 PM in Cleveland and Saturday at 7:00 PM in Hamilton vs the Crunch.

    –Go Habs Go!–

  21. piper says:

    I have a feeling that Prust will sit out this series and Briere will get a chance to show the doubters (myself included) playing on a top line.

  22. Danno says:

    RDS’s Joannie is a sweetie

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  23. Psycho29 says:

    I read somewhere (not sure if it was here or on Twitter) that Rod Black on the Raptor’s TSN broadcast referred to the Leafs as the most storied hockey franchise on the planet.

    Is it because there are so many stories about them missing the playoffs and not winning a cup?

    • D Mex says:

      Direct hit ! :lol:

      ALWAYS Habs –
      D Mex

    • Danno says:

      It’s about how they reach great heights only to fall many stories crashing onto the ground.

      ________________________________________

      “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
      Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      These are the people who will re-elect Rob Ford because he gets Toronto mentioned on US talk shows. Bah.

      —–
      Moving. Forward.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      And to think he hails from my hometown of Winnipeg. I suppose I now know why I had arguments with him playing baseball against him many moons ago!

      • Mavid says:

        Small world..I know him from my Winnipeg days as well..he was a DJ at the Saints Roller Skating Center..we became friends and went to the August One concert at the football stadium together (Heart, The Rockets, Ted Nugent, Loverboy, and Blue Oyster Cult) I moved not long after that and we lost touch..Needless to say I was shocked to see him on TV many years ago doing skating or the Olympics..

        Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

        • HabinBurlington says:

          I had no idea you had Winnipeg roots! Ha, I remember the Saints roller rink also.

          Cool Mavid!

          • Mavid says:

            I lived there for 3 years back in the early 80’s..Ness Ave my place faced the Assinaboine Racetrack…worked at Robins donuts part time..I use to love the indoor roller rinks..Saints had several of them in the city, and then there was the old wooden one downtown..I went to a Canucks/Jets game with my pops..and saw Dan Hill at the convention center..love the people..hated the winter..

            Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

  24. billylove says:

    Years of abuse are taking a toll on Prust. He is a little fragile at this stage, close to the end of his career. I don’t think he’s needed to beat the Bolts so I say give him more time off because it might be more important to have him well rested and in the lineup when we take on the Goons in the next round.

    • johnnylarue says:

      I’m inclined to plus one this.

      If there is chicken wire involved in keeping his shoulders together (and I suspect there is), I would put off playing him until the circumstances are a bit more dire… on the off chance that the extra rest is actually increasing his chances of staying healthy for more than two games in a row.

      • thorandresson says:

        what if they were already resting him to be cautious and so that he’s ready for the playoffs, like they did with Price after the olympics? Having depth allows you to make sure players are 100% healthy before coming back

    • Agreed, though he could still help out. But can he play effectively without putting the shoulder at risk again? If not, then it is better to save him until later in the TB series, if needed, or rest him until round 2.

      Defense wins championships

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

  25. adamkennelly says:

    can you imagine being an Oilers fan? you still have MacTavish and Lowe involved even after all these years of failures – a young, untested coach and everyone talking about being optimistic about the future. what a joke.

    • habcertain says:

      I think any GM would have drafted the same guys, but it is the failure to move any of these guys to get the right mix, except maybe for Nail (plenty of time tho), they all retain high value.

      • D Mex says:

        Taylor Hall has clearly signalled what he thinks of Eakins, and possibly also the ‘ plan ‘ for moving that team forward.
        I’d be interested in listening to comments about how he would fit with us, and what it would take to get him.

        Zero interest in Yakupov.

        ALWAYS Habs –
        D Mex

      • adamkennelly says:

        draft not withstanding – except for Yakupov – these clowns have done nothing to move the team forward. any idiot knows you can’t have a team of 20 year olds in the NHL – no matter how good they are. prolly should have traded a pick or two – maybe drafted a D-man and accelerate the teams movement in the right direction. these guys are acting like they have infinite runway.

    • mark-ID says:

      It amazes me that Chris Lee still gets to ref important games. As bad as he is during Habs games….I’ve seen him ref other teams….and he’s just as terrible.

      “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

  26. AH says:

    Is there any Hab with more pressure on him (Price maybe?), these playoffs than Briere? All we’ve heard since he was signed was how good he is in the playoffs, well the time is here and he is in the Cauldron of playoff expections that is the city of Montreal! I hope he’s ready…..

  27. Danno says:

    Does anybody know if Ryan C̶o̶k̶e̶ Malone is facing a suspension?

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  28. Sportfan says:

    Briere has been criticized over this season, but people have given him a break. This is where he “earns” his money, if he doesn’t produce then he will go through hell, I hope the best for him thought. I still say MT should try Gally, Briere, Eller/Bourque and see what happens

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  29. shiram says:

    Chris Stevenson ‏@CJ_Stevenson

    No Bishop for Game 1 for Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Montreal Canadiens.

  30. Mattyleg says:

    I can’t believe I just got home from school and saw some practice lines and now I’m angry.

    Everyone’s an idiot except me.
    I’m tragically misunderstood.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  31. Sportfan says:

    The Leafs said they don’t have an identity, I think they have one, their identity is they suck and that they are the NHL equivalent of the New York Yankees in the sense that many people dislike them!

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

    • Mattyleg says:

      That’s an excellent assessment.
      I think they’re aware of their identity, and that it’s more “we don’t have an identity that we like.”
      Well, tought shit, Leafs.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • HabinBurlington says:

      While the Yankees may not have won recently, I don’t think that identity is at all correct. The Yankees may not be liked, but George Steinbrenner always wanted to win and win at all costs. Yes different leagues, different rules, but the Yankees have tremendous success to back up their unpopularity.

      The Leafs simply haven’t had that for years, or longer.

    • scamorza says:

      Ok that maybe the extent of the comparison in the sense many may hate them but guessing many hate the Yankees for their success and opening up their wallets to stay successful ( now declining slightly )the laffs well we know about their success .ok just typing that has me laughing and spending well not sure they care much as no matter how crappy the team the $ keep rolling in from the sushi munching did I come here to watch a hockey game crowd? That being said it will be interesting to see how that changes as MLSE has opened the wallet for the soccer team

      come to Dorion suits where you get no….”hassoles” _ Yvon Lambert

  32. habsfan0 says:

    I’m fully confident Habs will win this series.
    However, if I’m wrong, I do have an abundant supply of pitchforks and torches ready to blame….whomever.

  33. Sportfan says:

    I like that Tinordi will get experience, but in Weaver we trust right? Weaver has been a fantastic trade and I’d like to see him in the playoffs.

    Sports and Entertainment in the link click and enjoy, clicking is fun!
    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

  34. habcertain says:

    so we pay Briere $8m for this very time of year, and MT has him going on a 4th line, and a fragile Prust is on the no.2 line.

  35. Ian Cobb says:

    HI/O Summit Facebook Page

  36. WindsorHab-10 says:

    A buddy of mine at work is leaving for Florida this Friday as he does every year. Purchased playoff tickets for game 5 next Thursday for $35 each. Are you kidding me? I told him that he can easily multiply that by 10 & not even be guaranteed a nose-bleed seat at the Bell Centre.

    • Psycho29 says:

      I went to the Habs game in Tampa 2 weeks ago. Tickets in the first couple of rows in the upper deck. On the red line. Face value NINETEEN BUCKS, we talked the scalper down from $40 to $30 each.
      He also had some lower down, with food and drink included for $85

  37. GoldenSeal says:

    Much as his team and us fans love him, it seems that every time Prust gets taken solidly into the boards, he ends up being injured. I suspect that he will not be able to play out the string with his team these playoffs, although hopefully playing TB in the opening round will buy him some breathing room. Anyway, I cringe ever time he takes a check.

    • WindsorHab-10 says:

      I have to agree. Feel the same way too. Hopefully with the time off that he had, he’s fully recovered & ready to go. We need a healthy Prust in the playoffs.

  38. DipsyDoodler says:

    One weird thing about Elliotte Friedman is his habit of not using the first person pronoun.

    Why is that?

    Modesty?

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

  39. govenah says:

    Playoff pool enthusiasts here you go with more to digest.

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2026227-nhl-playoff-odds-2014-handicapping-every-teams-championship-hopes/page/12
    Habs rated at 11. – size said to be the weakness.
    Good luck in your pool!

    The glass is MT.

  40. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Would love to see Prust back with the team but only if he’s 100%.

  41. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Would love to see Prust back with the team but only if he’s 100%.

  42. RetroMikey says:

    Did Prust get in shape after 2 days?
    I thought the media quoted he was out of shape and would not play.

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

    • krob1000 says:

      Well he was in the circles where they practiced a triangle based offense, he is known to spend a lot of time in the box and he looked good on the pk at practice running the diamond. Shape shouldn’t be an issue.

  43. zephyr says:

    if pleks is used in a shutdown role, then why Gallagher? don’t like gio there either. don’t like gio & briere at all – gio can compete but we have too many small guys & dd & Gallagher already outproduce him. small guys are liabilities in our end. not expecting much from briere period.
    if pleks is used in a shutdown role, then we’re going to need some scoring from eller’s line. I’m ok with bourque & gio/Gallagher there.
    we’re going to need some muscle on d. remember the crap that Ottawa got away with last yr? we can expect the same. one of tinordi/murray has to play. maybe both. if bouillon sees the ice, we’re in trouble. we can’t let price get run. last yr he even lost a tooth. don’t count on any refs to correct that crap. remember, all of n. America saw lucic spear emelin in the gonads except the refs on the ice & bettman’s boys. it’s gonna be open season.
    this is going to be a physically demanding series. mb said u need guys to get u to the playoffs & guys to get u thru the playoffs. let’s hope we have enough of group 2.
    having said that, I think the east is wide open. we have enough talent to go deep but I don’t like so many small fwds.. not too much confidence in mt either. depends how much those weaknesses hold us back.

    • AH says:

      Gallys production has gone downhill since he was put with Pleks, the faster he gets away from Pleks the better. I so wanted him to get 20 goals this year.

      • UKRAINIANhab says:

        Not really, Gallagher can play with anyone and be fine, it is his style of play which is why he could play with Parros and Blunden and be fine.

        • AH says:

          Yes, Gally is a total workhorse who works his arse off to make his own opportunities, that’s the problem, I’d like to see him with someone who can feed him some opportunities every so often so he can cash in. Sure he can play with anyone, but he’s more likely to produce with a more offensve minded centre than Pleks. And didn’t you just post below that the worst possible line is Prust Pleks Gallagher???

  44. Danno says:

    ME WANT HOCKEY!!!

    ________________________________________

    “Hey Richard, two minutes for looking so good!”
    Updates, highlights & great discussions on all things Habs

  45. UKRAINIANhab says:

    I can’t think of a worse line than Prust-Plek-Gallagher

    NO WAY should Prust be getting top 6 minutes…

    And Briere (a proven playoff performer) is on the 4th line while Prust is on the 1/2.

    Ugh….

  46. DipsyDoodler says:

    Barry Trotz has only coached 50 playoff games in 15 seasons (and his record is 19-31 for a .380 winning percentage).

    Therefore he should coach a team that doesn’t tend to make the playoffs.

    If only there was such a team and they were looking for a coach.

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

    • Loonie says:

      The Halak pattern continues.

      1. Gainey’s fault.
      2. Martin’s fault.
      3. Hitchcock’s fault.
      4. Oates’s fault.

      • The_Truth says:

        Halak actually had quite a nice season, playing over 50 games, with 29 wins and a very nice .921 % and 2.25 GAA.

        Looking at what Miller did since the trade to St Louis, Halak’s numbers even look better. I think Washington is a real good place for him.

        • Loonie says:

          So…….fire Adam Oates to appease Halak and Walsh?

          I wonder how many chances Halak’s going to get to show that he isn’t the most sensitive athlete in hockey. He is without a doubt the biggest diva in the NHL.

          Demanded a trade in Montreal – denied it
          Demanded more playing time in St. Louis and went at the coach – denied it
          Told the coaching staff in Washington he wasn’t mentally right to play against the Blues – denied it

          And every single time he’s acted like a child his agent has blasted the members of the organization that he’s playing for.

          The truth is there probably is a good fit for Halak somewhere. On a team that is never going to question him, that is going to do whatever he wants for him, give him every game he wants and pat him on the head regardless of his performance or behaviour.

          Is Jaroslav Halak worth all of that trouble? I guess that’s the question organizations are starting to ask themselves. Speaks volumes that he’s on his fourth team in four years and approaching his fifth.

    • docketrocket says:

      I always read and enjoy Elliott’s column. But I was puzzled by this:
      29. As the NHL searches to replace Shanahan as Discipline Czar, they’d love to have Joe Nieuwendyk, who was approached to join the Department of Player Safety last summer, but declined. The Ottawa Sun’s Bruce Garrioch touted John Ferguson, who worked in the league office under Brian Burke. The Windsor Star’s Bob Duff reported speculation about Adam Graves.

      Wasn’t Stéphane Quintal named three days ago despite being ignored by the media?

    • Mattyleg says:

      So funny.

      It’s really only 15 or so thoughts broken up into 30 paragraph/sentences.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

  47. Steeltown Hab says:

    Prust on the second line..like why? If you want a shutdown line okay, maybe you ice him with Plekanec and Gionta.

    But if you’re using Gallagher and Plekanec expecting offense than adding a 4th, maybe 3rd liner to the equation that has shown doesn’t transition up the ice offensively well, what is the rationale?

    Also don’t understand how Bourque earns a third line spot over Briere or Bournival, both are way better.

    Do we not want White in the lineup?

    ———————————

    Lars, PK, Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Emelin, Bournival, De La Rose – @J_Perez22

  48. JUST ME says:

    Sometimes we talk about a coach having lost his room to explain the debacle. I have never heard such words coming from a coach directly until this morning when Tortorella said that he did at one point lose the room. It then does explain that this guy needs to go if in the first year of your arrival with a team you cannot keep control then…

    • Just a Habs Fan says:

      He actually didn’t say that and you know it if you listened to the press release. Why don’t posters on here get some honesty built in to their written word…man is it too much to be honest

  49. montrealtilldeath says:

    Two players that will bust loose in the playoffs – Eller and Subban. Both players will have to in the words of the Great One” play their game” for the Habs to win. Habs in 5 or 6

    • Strummer says:

      I thought Eller was playing a lot better down the stretch.
      Hey it’s a new season after all
      ______________________________________________________
      “It’s just an opinion- I could be wrong”

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Yup, I think Eller will have a nice playoffs.

      • Walmyr says:

        Burly… you think or hope???…lol

        I hope!…
        This boy has all the tools to be a important player for this franchise for years to come (he doesn’t need to be a top 6 to be important). Regarding this playoff series against TBL we will need at his best and I hope he is ready and focused to play. I like Eller a lot and want to see him as a Canadiens for a long time but he needs to get his game back.

        CHeers

  50. Mattyleg says:

    Really, really looking forward to DRAFTLOTTERYNIGHT tonight.
    I’m really hoping to see this face again.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  51. SteverenO says:

    Still juggling lines, its hard to keep up;

    lets see if there is any history with today”s combos
    Bourque-Eller_Gionta — never* played together in the last two seasons

    Prust -Plekanec-Gallagher – never* played together in the Past two seasons

    * Never= Less than 20 minutes total time together at even strength –

    So we have a coach who is know for juggling lines and has seeemingly tried every conceivable combination ove rthe last two seasons who has now, on the eve of the first playoff game, managed to come up with two lines that have never been together before. I guess they will develop chemistry in practice ( oops, no, the practice lines keep changing as well), or during the playtoffs. Awesome. If these combos are so “good” I wonder why they never played together during the regular season.

    **************************************************
    reposted from last thread: based on yesterdays lines in prcatice:

    Yes, Pleks -Gio- Burke do have history
    They have played 100 Minutes together at even strength and allowed no goals but the team scored only once while this trio was on at even strength this season;

    Last season they played as a trio for 223 minutes (second most “steady line last season) during which they scored 8 goals while allowing 6 goals against. Their average over the last two season is one goal for every 36 minutes and one GA every 53 minutes, a pretty decent low scoring “shutdown” line.

    With Bourque having a terrible offensive season I do not understand why Therrien would not use his most effective line this season in the playoffs;
    Plek – Briere-Gionta have played 181 minutes as a trio during which time the team has scored 11 goals while only allowing one Goal against. A terrific “shut down” line that can also score goals.

    Eller-Prust-Gallagher: have not played together this season nor did they play together last season; (if they did it was for less than 20 minutes at even strength).

    As I have said before, any lineup that does NOT include the trio of Briere (LW)- Plekanec- Gionta is a huge coaching mistake. If the Habs lose the series and this line does not play together the coach should be fired as soon as they are eliminated.

    After making the playoffs the most important task in the regular season is to prepare for the playoffs. If the coach does not analyze the results of a season full of line juggling and utilize the trios that have proven to be the most effective when it matters most, he is, by definition, incompetent.

    Does anyone else find it disconcerting that the coach is still juggling lines in practice, the day before the first game of the post season?
    The only “line” that is not being altered is the1st wave of the PowerPlay- ust be because of how effective the line of Patches-DD-Vanek have been with the man advantage: (57 minutes played with the man advantage 2 powerplay goals scored).

    As a life long Habs fan, I am hoping that the team goes deep in the playoffs despite the coach”s glaring weakness. the only good thing about an early exit from the post -season is the possibility that it would lead to a coaching change.

    The sad part is that a lot of what Therrien brings is positive- his biggest weakness (evaluating talent and performance) is one that could easily be overcome by the hiring/deployment of a data analyst. Please note that I am not even talking about so called “advanced stats” I would be happy, and the team would do better, if they simply used good old fashioned performance metrics.
    **************************************************
    regards,

    Steve O.

    regards,

    Steve O.

    • krob1000 says:

      I suspect this way any line can match up aginst Stamkos…even teh 4th. Being visiting team Cooper will have last change and this way 3 of the 4 (the 3 that ever start int heir wn end) all have defensive presences on them and can be iced in those situations.

      There is also the flexibility to simply swap out Eller and Pleks….then you have two lines with a huge amount of familiarity with each other while at the same time keeping thewing pairs together.

      Briere on the 4th allows him to get some 2nd unit pp time and MT to still be able to throw a line that will match against Stamkos who will come on right after the pp.

      • SteverenO says:

        You make some good points and there is the possibility that these line combos will do very well. I just find it interesting that a NHL team is going into the post season without any sense of continuity.

        I also think that Briere between Weise and Bournival can be an effective line.

        The only point which I don”t agree with you is the familiarity issue; Swapping Eller and Plek will provide one familiar line 17-14-21, but the other line of 8-81-11 have never seen any significant time together.

        regards,

        Steve O.

        • krob1000 says:

          Eller and Prust have played significantly together over the last two years. Eller primarily had Chucky last year as his winger when with PRust but they work well together. Gally can be plugged in anywhere and he too played with PRust last year (normally with Chucky). There is a lot fof commonality there. Eller has also played quite a bit with Gallagher.

          • SteverenO says:

            Yes Eller has played with Prust, and he has also played with Gallagher, What the has never done is plahy with both of them at the same time. My question is why now, after two full seasons and myriads of combinations are we still coming up with brand new combos?

            if the lines had been relatively stable most of the year, I could understand that a b it of tinkering come playoff time due to match ups, etc, would produce some new trios, It does seem a little far-fetched to believe that having not ever thought of playing these trios together for two full seasons (despite trying many dozens of combos) that all of a sudden these combos are the optimal choices.

            regards,

            Steve O.

    • Paz says:

      Dude, agree with you right up to the end, and then you lost me.

      Coaches make a lot of decisions on “instincts”, on “whim”, very subjective.

      They “believe” in themselves, and their instincts have gotten them 1 of 30 jobs in the world as an NHL head coach.

      Too many will ignore the facts and the numbers, and instead try to force a square peg in a round hole if that’s what their gut is telling them.

      Always read your posts even though I don’t always agree with you.

      • SteverenO says:

        You are right Paz, We want a coach who makes some decisions based on whim and instincts. but That needs to be measured with other decisions based on historical performance, and most importantly there needs to be some continuity .

        I doubt you will find too many players that enjoy playing with new linemates every other game and never feeling nay sense of stability.

        In my opinion, Therrien”s constant juggling of lines cannot be something that instills confidence in the players, or the fans, for that matter.

        regards,

        Steve O.

      • habcertain says:

        I believe his French speaking ability got him this job, lets call it as it is.

  52. youngwun says:

    Be huge if prusty is ready for game 1. Looks like he’ll play though.

  53. Habs_101 says:

    Is it not painfully obvious to management, if not the coaches that Beaulieu is a far better option, especially for this series than ANY of; Boullion, Murray or Tinordi. He brings the possession play and excellent skating and puck movement play that we need to transition against a very quick Tampa team. Not to mention we are 0/billion in the last 8 games on the PP, it wouldn’t hurt letting Subban and Markov play for the first minute to minute 15 in the playoffs instead of 1:30 or more on every PP.

    Beaulieu – Emelin is a really decent second pairing PP unit and Beaulieu with Weaver is an excellent balance for the 5-6 guys 5 on 5.

    I just dont get it. Its the playoffs now, enough with the lessons and all the other political bull. Why dont they ice the best lineup…

    Also, I should add that I do like what MT has done with the fwds.
    #1 line is obvious choice.
    #2 (prust,plek,gally) and #3 (Borque,Eller,Gio) both have two shutdown combo’s with offensive capabilities, much needed in the PO’s.
    #4 (Bourn,Briere,Weise) This is brilliant against a team like Tampa, they should outplay the 4th all series long.

    GO HABS GO!

    • SC27 says:

      It makes you wonder if Therrien’s master plan was to rest his buddy Frankie to be in that 5-6 pair going into the playoffs. I really did not think Bouillon would play another game once they seemed set with Beaulieu and Murray occupying the last 2 spots in the middle of the season.

      He sure fooled me.

    • johnnylarue says:

      I know Beaulieu has mainly (allegedly) played “protected” minutes with the big club, but even that notwithstanding he’s a cumulative +11 in 23 NHL games.

      I’ve seen him make some ballsy forays into the offensive zone, watched him lose the puck on occasion, but his elite-level wheels allow to him fix his mistakes most of the time–in much the same manner PK used to do back when he was allowed to be an offensive defenceman.

      While I don’t think the conceptual value of ‘experience’ is imaginary when it comes to the playoffs, I honestly feel like Beaulieu is a top-5/6 D on this team against a fast, hermetically-sealed opponent like the Lightning. We need possession players and some backup weapons on the PP if we’re going to score more than one goal per game against them.

      Marky-Yemmy
      Gorgy-PK
      BeauBeau-Weavey

      Book it!

      • Paz says:

        Hard to believe Beaulieu will not step in at some point. The team is flat out better with him in the lineup.

      • Loonie says:

        The entire premise of Subban coming up when he did was that if his minutes were protected his speed would allow him to compensate for mistakes from his own blueline out.

        Beaulieu arguably has more raw skill than Subban and they’re on par in the skating department if not a slight advantage in Beaulieu’s favour.

        This team is doing itself a big disservice by leaving him out of the lineup.

        • krob1000 says:

          BEaulieu is a better pure skater (not as strong but more fluid and more efficient for sure), SUbban is a better stickhandler and better at evading a forecheck….he can spin his way out of almost anything and is as good with the puck as the elite forwards in the game. Beaulieuis more raw speed…kind of like a young Niedermayer in his fluid skating…it appears effortless and he is gone. Subban when he was younger also had more raw strength than Beaulieu at a similar age. In Subban’s entire career I can honestly say I have never seen another NHL player come out on top of as many puck battles in corners as PK Subban. Sometimes I really truly do get intrigued at the thought of him as a forward….I know it is wrong but I can’t help but imagine and dream about the Habs having a forward who could protect the puck that well down low.

          • Loonie says:

            I don’t blame ya.

            His backwards skating and open ice checking ability are very likely the only reasons he’s a defenseman.

    • JUST ME says:

      With all due respect it`s not politicall bull it has to do with maturity and needs to be delt with because this is not a league for kids. I would rather have Beaulieu in the lineup for the next 10 years than have him now at any price. We managed to do very well without him up to now didn`t we ? Furthermore he has a problem with the defensive side of his game that leaves a big hole where he should be when he goes deep in the zone. It is getting better but still…

      I toyally agree with you about the kid being the real deal and will be a beauty to watch in the upcoming years but let`s not rush him into a game he his not ready to assume with consistency.

      • Habs_101 says:

        I get the point about the maturing process. My point is that in the NHL, the best professional hockey league in the world, by the time the play-offs role around, you should be icing your best lineup. Barring some sort of huge off-ice or on-ice mistake, the maturing games should be done with by the point.

        At +11 over 23 games he is hardly a defensive liability. +/- is hardly the be all end all, but playing those sheltered minutes he is exceeding. HE should easily be playing on our 5-6 pair for the entire post season.

        If at the end of the post season he hasn’t learned what management feels he needs to, send him to the AHL for the first 10-15 games of the following season before bringing him in. Right now though, the best players should be in the lineup.

        GO HABS GO!

  54. Luke says:

    Sounds like Carlyle is putting the collapse on the Players.
    Not unlike Oates did.

    @markhmasters:
    Carlyle objects to idea players tuned him out; implies, instead, that team was simply not mentally strong enough to deal with adversity.
    Carlyle on playing sound defence: “[Players] did not want to do that on a day-to-day basis”
    Carlyle: “We’re not asking players to do something they haven’t done before, wouldn’t have done in another situation”
    Carlyle: “We lacked an ability to get inside & compete”

    • Luke says:

      And one comment that could be PK relevent:

      “@markhmasters: Carlyle on surprise in exit interviews: says young d-man who played rover style early then tighter later felt leash was shorter than it was”

      • Loonie says:

        I think the issue of composure is a fair topic for Carlyle to address considering Dion Phaneuf called a sports talk radio station to plead for forgiveness following an awful game.

        Shows you where the focus is.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Heard him talk about the complete surprise from some player exit interviews. He did everything but say Jake Gardiner after throwing him under the bus. Unbelievable, this guy has indeed become a dinosaur.

  55. CJ says:

    Following a good night’s sleep and some self reflection, I am going to take a break from HIO. I wanted to quickly thank everyone for allowing me the opportunity to contribute thus far. I hope I added something during my time within your community, but fear that I have become a tired voice. This is a great resource and I look forward to connecting again in the future. For those folks who are sitting on the fence, it’s a great forum and I would strongly suggest you considering joining. Be aware that it can be addictive LOL!

    In closing, I wish each of you well and look forward to rejoining the discussion following the first round. Looks like I will be going to the home playoff games, which is something I have looked forward to all season. Thank you again for welcoming me into your community and Go Habs Go!

    Best wishes, CJ

    • shiram says:

      I know there was some fuss last night, but I always enjoy reading your posts, even the ones I don’t agree with.

      Anyways, do what you feel is best!

    • Cal says:

      HIO is rather addictive, isn’t it?
      See ya later.

    • Luke says:

      Do what you’ve got to do, but I like your posts (whether I agree or disagree with ‘em) and don’t find them ‘tired’ at all.

      However, enjoy the games and we’ll read you later.

    • Buzz Lightbeer says:

      Don’t be silly bro. Now,as Price would say is when “the fun begins” and you’re one the enjoyable articulate reads on this site.

    • The Jackal says:

      Thanks CJ, but you’ll be back. Once you go HIO, you never say bye-O!

      ______________________
      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • Mattyleg says:

      It’s a shame, CJ, always sad to see a courteous, thoughtful poster go, but you have to do what’s best for you!

      There’s always a warm Leave A Comment box here for you whenever you want to say hi.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Sometimes a break is good, do what you need, but your posts are always welcomed.

      CHeers CJ!

    • Walmyr says:

      CJ, just enjoy the playoff games…and don’t disappear because it’s always good to read your comments. Besides, this is a Habs (inside out) comunity and you seems to be a proud Habs fan!

      CHeers!

    • frontenac1 says:

      Hey CJ! You can’t leave us now amigo! Take a day and come on back for game time tomorrow. I love your posts,so keep” em coming.Saludos!

    • SteverenO says:

      @CJ

      I have always enjoyed reading your reasoned comments. Don”t be a stranger!

      regards,

      Steve O.

    • JUST ME says:

      I really hope that you will enjoy the playoffs and look forward to reading your excellent comments.
      That being said ,it does do a world of good to go away for a while ,days,weeks or whatever makes you feel appropriate to be adding your voice to the debate. I think we do get emotionnally involved and cannot agree with everyone and god knows some posters gets on our nerves but hey ! That`s life i guess . Go habs Go !

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Enjoy the first round CJ and we will see you back on here. I have always enjoyed your posts even when they are not the same as mine. I like the diverse opinions are what makes this site interesting.

      Hopefully you will be at the summit next year and we can grab a beer

    • GrosBill says:

      The respect you show posters around here is nice to see.

      Hope to see you posting again soon.

    • HabsPooch says:

      Hey CJ. Take a 24 hour break…watch some Minions on tv with your boys and come back ready to go tomorrow. The fun starts now! There’s always something interesting to talk about regarding the Habs and you’re a first line player on this site. Looking forward to your call up to the big leagues tomorrow night. Beaulieu would be envious of you :)

  56. Loonie says:

    I’m admittedly a know it all but I need help with something. I need somebody to explain to me how it is that Kevin Lowe still has a job in the NHL. I realize this isn’t the time for Oilers banter but my goodness this just eats at me.

    He has filled his team with the exact same type of forward for the last six years with high draft picks thinking that he could add spare parts around them and build something. He’s fired himself as GM in what was almost surely a PR move(twice). Fired Craig MacTavish(then hired him as GM), Pat Quinn, Tom Renney and Ralph Krueger in the last five years.

    Those are some pretty damn good coaches to have hired and fired. What might be more egregious than his complete disregard consistency is the same disregard for balance and experience on a hockey team.

    Through the last near decade of futility and blame games the most alarming thing is that he hasn’t figured out that his team plays in the Western conference. He must expect the likes of Eberle, Hall, Nugent-Hopkins, Yakupov and Gagner to display their skill against teams that boast Backes, Pietrangelo, Bouwmeester, Keith, Seabrook and Toews, Couture, Boyle and Vlasic. His selection of Yakupov two years ago illustrated that more than anything else. At a time where he could have taken his lottery pick and added a franchise defenseman in Ryan Murray he chose a kid who mirrored five he already had.

    Bob Gainey and Pierre Gauthier understandably took a lot of heat for believing the NHL was actually going to make a transition to speed and skillful hockey. At least they saw that it was a lie and made adjustments albeit too late. Kevin Lowe STILL believes the NHL is making this transition and what’s worse is that he has seemingly no knowledge of the kind of team it takes to win in the West and inexplicably still has the final say in hockey decisions for the Edmonton Oilers.

    If I’m Darryl Katz I’m ironically firing Dallas Eakins and offering Barry Trotz whatever he wants. And if Trotz can’t turn it around with the roster I have, I’m moving players, not coaches.

    That franchise at one point in the near future is going to have to win and win big. Watching Kevin Lowe with that $#@! eating grin on his face every year at the draft lottery sickens me as Habs fan but would have me breaking things as an Oilers fan.

    Now that I’m at the end of this rant it makes me laugh that people actually looked down on Oilers fans for throwing their jerseys onto the ice this season, I wouldn’t blame them for grabbing Kevin Lowe and throwing him onto the ice from a couple hundred feet at this point.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Adam Sandler makes a movie every 6 months.

      That’s both egregious and puzzling.

      —–
      Moving. Forward.

    • Paz says:

      Agree. Except I think the Leafs will offer Trotz a huge deal and he will go to Toronto.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Really? I did hear some rumblings the Jets may make an offer as he is a Dauphin Manitoba boy.

        If the Leafs are willing to dump Carlyle, they should then also dump Nonis, he have Carlyle Clarkson and took away at Grabo and McArthur.

        • Paz says:

          That’s possible. Nonis has made some very bad moves for sure.

          Trotz is a communicator. He evaluates talent very well. Then he sits with every player and carefully explains what is expected of them.

          I know it sounds so basic, and you would think every team would do this.

          Most try to do it, but they fail at it, mostly because the coach is stubborn, or not evaluating his talent accurately.

          • The Jackal says:

            Is that your opinion re. coaches trying but failing to communicate or is it an established fact? I think that’s a bit of a presumptive claim – most NHL teams don’t have problems with coaching, and one could argue that most teams find some success in many ways throughout the season, even if they don’t reach their goal. IMO, coaches are easy scapegoats and they are more easily replaceable than players, so when things are going awry they are the first to walk the plank – I think this is often confused with coaches failing at coaching rather than a team just failing to mesh.

            I find it very hard to believe that most NHL coaches don’t communicate well with players – how on earth did they get there then? Certainly there are some coaches who don’t value communication as much as other coaches, and then there are coaches who fail as you say, but the majority of the time it appears that coaches communicate sufficiently well with their players.

            ______________________
            Hockey sine stercore tauri.

          • Paz says:

            Many coaches at the NHL level do not communicate properly, effectively, or even regularly, with their players.

            Fact.

    • Cal says:

      Good rant. I’m sure the Oiler version of HIO is filled with this.
      How does Lowe survive? It’s one of those Albertan Mysteries™, Loonie, like how tar sands magically become oil sands.
      I’m surprised no Hab fans did it during the dead head era of Houle and Tremblay, where they systematically wrecked the team.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Good Rant indeed, and I endorsed Oilers fans throwing jerseys, just as I endorse Leaf fans throwing jersey or waffles on the ice.

      A great rant is served better with Sh*t Eating grin, loved the use of that!

    • Luke says:

      Lowe is a founding member of the “Friends of Gretzky” club.

    • AH says:

      Loonie, I have also wondered as much and I’ve also wondered how he gets jobs with Team Canada all the time. I can only conclude that because he’s buddy with Gretzky, that keeps him in “the loop” all the time. As for now, he also is still with the Oilers and will probably not be gone until he quits, because the present owner here in Edmonton was an Oiler “groupie” back in their glory days and was buddy, buddy with a bunch of them. Now that he owns them, he’s not going to fire his buddy. Like one reporter in Edmonton said, Darryl Katz needs to decide if he wants to run this team like a professional hockey team, or a “Tree Fort”, IE the MacTavish signing as GM.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Lowe must have blackmail material on someone. He has been awful at his job and yet get impunity. You would think he was Gretzky

  57. AH says:

    Just watched that Youtube clip of the 1973 final game, see that line of Cournoyer and the Mahovolich bros., was that not the original “2 and a 1/2 men” line or what?, LOL!!

  58. Saintpatrick33 says:

    This team plays totally different when a healthy Prust is in the lineup. He’s a warrior he’ll be ready for the playoffs.

  59. RetroMonkey says:

    You will all be disappointed. Bruins will win. It’s there in my media guide. Don’t tell me I didn’t tell you so.

    Bruins will win with Rask in nets.

  60. Bruins win the cup? Pft, they can’t even beat Montreal with our back up in net…..win the cup, thanks EA udabestest! :lol:

    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    http://www.Sholi2000.com
    Custom Sports Figures
    Congrats Carey Price and PK Subban, Montreal’s Gold Medal Members!

  61. habsfan0 says:

    I have a strong feeling Briere will not disappoint during the postseason.

    • I have a strong feeling he’ll be No better than he has shown all season. He’s now at a time in his life where he needs first line players to make him shine. If I’m wrong, then GREAT!

      Shane Oliver
      Twitter @Sholi2000
      http://www.Sholi2000.com
      Custom Sports Figures
      Congrats Carey Price and PK Subban, Montreal’s Gold Medal Members!

    • jimmy shaker says:

      If MT gives him the ice time and stable line mates, he should be able to succeed. But when a guy is benched for taking a penalty or making a mistake, it’s pretty hard to produce. 13 goals in 68 games with the other 14 games out with a concussion and playing 8 – 9 minutes a night is pretty decent! Bottom line is our great coach needs to cut the cord a little bit and get off his back and let him play, then we will have the opportunity to see what Danny B is all about!

      Shaker out!

      • Luke says:

        If Danny B plays more, who plays less? To give minutes you’ll have to subtract them.
        DD is the best offensive centre. They won’t come from there. Plex is the most solid centre. They won’t come from there. So, if it is a a centre, Briere’s minutes come from Eller.

        If it is as a winger, I suspect he and Prust play with Plex and the minutes are determined by the situation. Those minutes come at the expense of Bournival or Gallagher (inh a Gionta swap so he’s on the RW, Briere on the LW).

        • Walmyr says:

          Asking to Jimmy S or Michel T???

        • jimmy shaker says:

          To get those minutes, he’s going to have to get them playing on the wing with pleks and gally. Making the third line gio and bernie playing with eller and the fourth line, a true checking, quick, tough and energy line of prust and weezy with white is my lineup where everyone is used and gets very reasonable ice time.

          Shaker out!

          • Luke says:

            I also suspect that’s where he’ll wind up, and Prust/Gionta spotting on that line as well as the situation dictates. Gallagher is pretty bad in the defensive zone, so Gionta subs there in tighter games. Prust over Briere as well.

            That’s probably why we are seeing a variety of line combos the last couple practices.

          • jimmy shaker says:

            Very true…..MT covering lots of potential scenario’s that could arise.

            Shaker out

  62. BobbySmithWasClutch says:

    It’s a shame we’ve not had a healthy Prust this season. He’s nowhere near the effective checker and energy guy he was with the Rangers a few years ago or for us at the beginning of last season. If he’s not close to 100% he’s almost a non-factor.

  63. SC27 says:

    Not like there were many, but this HAD to be the best moment of last year’s playoffs.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ntviOWsYSs

  64. Timo says:

    Fuuuaaaaa… is it Wednesday yet?

  65. Say Ash says:

    EA Sports has us sweeping Tampa.

  66. Mattyleg says:

    I love the idea of a Weise, Briere, Bournival 4th line.
    It’s essentially a secondary/tertiary scoring line.
    Bourni and Weise have wheels all kinds, bro, and Briere will be the setup guy.
    That way, TB can’t just focus their shutdown on one line.

    Love it.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • shiram says:

      I still think they should have White centering the fourth, and Bourque eating hot-dogs, but it’s clear they are trying to ice a team with potential scoring threats on all lines.

  67. FB says:

    Anyone who thinks Briere will be clutch in the playoffs playing 12 mins a game is well….nuts…

    • Mattyleg says:

      Why will he play so little?

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • Luke says:

        because he’s so tiny!

        he’s so small that he must work harder. travel further. he must skate more because his strides are shorter. the net is further awy, so he must shoot further. the bench, so high, so he must climb higher.

        • Mattyleg says:

          Ah! I get it!
          He plays a little man’s game.
          In Little Man Minutes (LMM), 12 minutes is actually around 24 Normalsized Man Minutes (NMM).
          I think he can be very effective!

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • Luke says:

            What I’m saying is: That nine pound hammer is a little too heavy, buddy, for his size, buddy, for his size.

          • Mattyleg says:

            Hmm. Good point.
            Do you think he’ll be comin’ back?
            After goin’ on the mountain to see his baby, that is…?

            —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • Luke says:

            Sorry, Matty. He ain’t comin’ back…

      • johnnylarue says:

        Because it’s his season average, and because Therrien clearly doesn’t trust him to play more than that?

        I think FB’s point is that Briere didn’t earn his reputation as a point-per-game playoff guy playing on a fourth line.

        • Mattyleg says:

          Depends entirely on the role and TOI of the 4th line.

          —Hope Springs Eternal—

          • johnnylarue says:

            Color me skeptical that Briere breaks the 15-minute mark (OT excluded) under Curling-Iron Mike Therrien. ;)

        • DipsyDoodler says:

          In fairness to Therrien (in this case, and just this once), Briere is washed up. He gets knocked off the puck easier than a scoop of ice cream gets knocked off its cone.

          —–
          Moving. Forward.

          • johnnylarue says:

            I’ve had some pretty resilient ice cream cones in my day… but I hear what you’re saying.

            Still, I’ve seen flashes of vintage Briere throughout the season but it seems his leash is so short that he is not permitted so much as a sideways fart without sitting out his next three shifts. Seems like he went from penthouse to doghouse the moment he failed to realize Therrien’s “vision” for an incredibly unbalanced first line with DD and Patches…

            Briere can be hard to watch on an off night, but I still think Therrien has been unduly hard on him.

  68. Luke says:

    So it’s loser day in the NHL. (Unless you are Anaheim, or the NJD).

    Draft Lottery goes tonight. Leafs have a 3.6% chance at snagging the first overall pick. I hope they do not pick Perlini. It was bad enough cheering when Verhaeghe scored for the Icedogs, if I have to cheer for another Leaf prospect I’m going to puke.

    The Islanders decide on draft day if they give this year’s pick (5th) or next year’s to Buffalo as part of the (“Holy crap how brutal was that?”) Vanek deal.
    Quite a dilema. Do you give Buffalo a second top 5 pick this year, or risk next year’s chance at McDavid/Eichel?

    Anaheim get’s Ottawa’s pick from the Bobby Ryan deal.

    New Jersey gets their pick back, but is locked into #30, because the league decided that punishing cheaters is not important.

    • The Jackal says:

      I hope the Canucks win the first pick.

      ______________________
      Hockey sine stercore tauri.

      • Luke says:

        I’m actually torn.
        I’m hoping one of these:
        The Sabres do. Which is bad for us, but also bad for the Leafs. Plus they are local to me, and I have a soft sport for them.

        I’m also OK with the Islanders winning it, just to make life a bit tougher on them. Especially if they finish in the lottery again next year.
        I’m also thirdly OK with Anaheim winning it as a big “HA-HA” to the Sens.

        • Loonie says:

          If I were a gambling man I would bet on the Islanders winning that first overall pick.

          Awful owner trying to sell the team, moving to Brooklyn, etc.

          • Luke says:

            So if they get the first overall this year, surely they keep it and give next year’s to Buffalo even though there is good chance they’ll be in the lottery again for the McDavid/Eichel draft.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            I think you are both right.

          • DipsyDoodler says:

            You mean like the time Pittsburgh won the Sidney lottery?

            —–
            Moving. Forward.

    • Loonie says:

      New Jersey were made an example of while other teams went by unscathed.

      Hard to pick on the Devils for following suit.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Well they were then also allowed to renege on a contract with Kovalchuk. Bettman has a beautiful track record of inconsistencies.

        • Loonie says:

          The new CBA essentially allows any team to renege on a contract with the exchange of cap hits and salaries now allowed in trades.

          Our system doesn’t work so instead of giving new prospective owners incentive to purchase teams and put money into them we’ll give the penny pinching owners(Melnyk, Wang among others) a band aid to meet the criteria of our cap system.

  69. WVHabsfan says:

    Beat the Bolts!!

  70. HabinBurlington says:

    Glad to hear Prust is heathy enough to be gametime decision, he will be a big help in a playoff run.

    • Luke says:

      Yup.
      I’m glad they shut him down for the tail end of the season.
      I doubt he would have missed as many games if it mattered, but with the playoffs all but locked, Prust getting that time to recoup is far more beneficial than him throwing checks at Islander farm hands.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        I saw your little draft proposal on the last thread. Nicely played by the way.

        • Luke says:

          Yah… thought I’d drop that in there! HAHA

          @Chris: Yes, That is one of the very few scenarios where I could see Subban being dealt. Like most insiders, I have no real hockey knowledge, but I can see a fit with that deal and the Habs/Oilers.
          I’d prefer to keep him and still acquire Ekblad, though. But since we traded Diaz, I just don’t think we have enough.
          :)

          @Paz: I think the Sabres are deeper on D than at centre, right now. Zadarov, Risto, Myers all look solid.
          At centre they have the splendidly named Zemgus Girgensons (and very good player, but ultimately a 2nd or very good 3rd, I suspect) and Grigs, who is a bit of a question mark.

          They take Reinhardt. I bet you one American nickel.

    • Strummer says:

      Every time he comes back he hurts his shoulder again (so it seems)
      Can he be effective if he is unable to engage in his usual physicality i.e. pushing, shoving and grappling opponents?
      There are no fisticuffs in the playoffs generally speaking so maybe his spot would be better served byan offensive player.

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

      • HabinBurlington says:

        I think he brings some excellent physical and mental intangibles to the team. Guy will skate through a wall for his teammates. I like what he brings, not sure about 2nd line but I know i like him in the lineup.

      • alain58 says:

        Hard hitting always have a place in the playoff. Yes there is way less fighting in the playoff but hard rugged play is the way to go. Prust has a place on my team any day.

      • BobbySmithWasClutch says:

        sad but good question/point

  71. habs_1978 says:

    Can’t wait! Go HABS!

  72. DipsyDoodler says:

    You predicted gold for Canada eh? Way to go out on a limb.

    —–
    Moving. Forward.


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