Prust will be in Habs lineup for Game 1

The Canadiens held an optional morning skate in Tampa as they prepared to face the Lightning Wednesday night in Game 1 of their first-round playoff series (7 p.m., CBC, RDS, TSN Radio 690).

The Habs’ No. 1 line of Thomas Vanek, Max Pacioretty and David Desharnais all skipped the morning skate, along with defenceman Francis Bouillon. All the other players were on the ice, including Brandon Prust, who will be in the lineup for Game 1. Prust missed the last 12 games of the regular season with an upper-body injury. He is expected to play on a line with Tomas Plekanec and Brendan Gallagher.

“He’s had two good practices with our team,” coach Michel Therrien told reporters in Tampa about Prust. “He’s excited and we’re all excited about him being back in the lineup. He’s a leader, he’s a tough guy to play against, he’s got speed and, most importantly, he’s a gamer.”

Said Prust: “Playoffs starting, so the heart’s pumping. This is a brand new season. Everything is stepped up a notch. You’re not really sure what happens, but something goes in the brain where it’s an all-out war.”

Therrien also confirmed that Bouillon and Michael Bournival will be in the lineup. It will be the 47th career playoff game for Bouillon, but the first for Bournival.

“He’ll be nervous, but nerves can be positive,” Therrien said about the 21-year-old rookie, who posted 7-7-14 totals in 60 regular-season games and was minus-6. “He’ll make an impact with his speed.”

It will also be the first career playoff game for Habs defenceman Alexei Emelin.

Lightning coach Jon Cooper confirmed that goalie Ben Bishop, who is sidelined with an elbow injury, won’t play in Game 1, but wouldn’t say who will start in his place. Cooper can choose between Anders Lindback, who was named the NHL’s player of the week after posting a 3-0-0 record last week, or Kristers Gudlevskis, the goalie who stood on his head for Latvia against Canada at the Olympics. Gudlevskis almost gave an entire country a heart attack when he stopped 55 of 57 shots for Latvia in a 2-1 loss to Canada in Sochi.

Carey Price will start in goal for the Canadiens with something to prove in the postseason. Price has a career 9-17 record in the playoffs with a 2.90 goals-against average and .905 save percentage.

The scratches for the Habs in Game 1 are expected to be Travis Moen, Ryan White and George Parros up front and Douglas Murray and Jarred Tinordi on defence.

Game 2 of the Habs-Lightning series will be Friday night in Tampa (7 p.m., CBC, RDS, TSN Radio 690).

Game 1 Preview, NHL.com

Game Day Report, Canadiens.com

Game Notes

Habs will have a taste of home in Tampa, by The Gazette’s Brenda Branswell

Post-season is Briere’s time to shine, by The Gazette’s Pat Hickey

NHL Playoff Preview, predictions, montrealgazette.com

Five keys to Game 1, Canadiens.com

Tampa Bay writer picks Habs in 6, Tampa Bay Times

Five things to know about the Canadiens, Tampa Bay Times

How the Lightning and Habs match up, Tampa Bay Times

‘Crazy’ year has rewards for Stamkos, Tampa Bay Times

How can Habs shut down Stamkos? Stu on Sports blog

Off-ice life helps Lindback weather struggles, Tampa Bay Times

Roy has shown softer side in guiding Avalanche, montrealgazette.com

HI/O Summit Facebook page

363 Comments

  1. BJ says:

    @Dunboyne Mike. To answer your question below. I’m going to pick up the game at 8:00 am or so in the AM CET. Its too late and especially if it goes into OT. I’m just too cranked up at 4:00 am when game ends and then another while to process the excitement… And I have workers coming in around 9:00 can’t do it anymore just too many years on the body.

  2. boing007 says:

    Go Jackets! Go Ducks! Quack! Quack!

    Richard R

  3. habs001 says:

    Purcell has been a player the Habs have had real problems with..Every game vs the Habs he gets so many scoring opportunities…

  4. Sportfan says:

    GO HABS GO!!!!! Happy to have Prust in the lineup.

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

  5. johnnylarue says:

    I’d be feeling a whole lot cockier about our chances if we were facing the Bruins in Round 1.

    Teams match up pretty well on paper, but Bolts have three lines with actual chemistry and are capable of playing airtight defense when needed. And unlike the Broons, they haven’t shown any signs of mental weakness or straying from the game plan when they play against us.

    The Habs version of “airtight defense” involves letting Carey Price stop 50 shots and relying on their five skaters block 60 more while spending 40 minutes a game hemmed in their own zone between icing calls.

    Priority one: light up their backup goalie(s) to destabilize the team as early as possible. I really get the impression that TB is the type of team that can make opponents feel like they’re impossible to score on if you let them get their footing in a series.

    I wouldn’t count on any history-making Sens-like late-game collapses from Tampa Bay to bail us out of trouble. Not in their DNA.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Great post. Is it more or less essential to crack their forecheck — and punish them for it — once or twice? WOuld that change the complexion of the series?

      (Please write another long and engaging post, perhaps with a few more difficult words entailing the use of a dictionary, perhaps an exercise of imagination and some homework involving viewing the entire Habs’ Best Games dvd box-set).

      • johnnylarue says:

        Thanks, Mitch. I’m still trying to figure out how to trick this infernal WordPress site into letting me post my patented advanced-level rebus puzzles to make my simple-minded theories more difficult to decipher.

    • Rugger says:

      Their airtight defense did give up more goals than the Habs over the full 82 games and now have either a back-up or a Goalie returning from an arm injury. I am not worried about TB at all.

      • johnnylarue says:

        Good counter-point, Rugger.

        There are glimmers of hope, no doubt, and most of the pundits (or are they pun-ditzes?) have this series going 6 or 7…

        As the always gracious and occasionally edifying Dunboyne points out above, beating their dogged Hounds of Hell forechecking style and getting out of our zone as quickly as possible will be key. But that’s precisely the kind of system that’s given MT and his gang fits all season long.

  6. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Habs 2 – Tb 1

    Vanek, Plekanec (OT)

    • Paz says:

      Putin must be stopped and here’s how.

      Almost all of the business loans received by non government controlled Russian businesses, are loans written by European and American banks.

      These loans should be stopped immediately.

      This is an economic sanction that can really hit hard and possibly stop Putin in his tracks.

      He’s a criminal, a gangster, and a thug.

      I like your overtime call. I feel like we will see more than 1 overtime in this series.

  7. krob1000 says:

    http://www.stats.hockeyanalysis.com/ratings.php?disp=1&db=201314&sit=5v5&pos=forwards&minutes=100&teamid=16&type=individual&sort=ifenwick&sortdir=DESC

    Now I jsut clicked on the pp thing and DD is at the bottom of both of the fenwick and corsui thing there too?

    Am I reading this thing backwards or is this true?

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      It’s “individual” fen wick/corsi meaning shots on or towards goal by the player. Not surprising to see DD take fewer shots than anyone else.

      —–
      Moving. Forward.

      • krob1000 says:

        You are into these stats,….where do I find one that factors in zone starts, competition quality and 1st line pp duty…surely someone has done that..what is the one that does that? I have looked on th e site for athe last 5 minutes or so and it is crazy how many different categories tehre are…what is the best overall one to look by the majority of advanced stats people?

        • DipsyDoodler says:

          http://www.extraskater.com

          —–
          Moving. Forward.

          • krob1000 says:

            cool..I will look at …I am not a believer that these stats will bring me any eyepopping stuff I can’t see but I will try to edumacate myself on them a bit bercause they keep getting brought up so often….adn TWI…no worries…I am already a jackarse!

          • twilighthours says:

            You and me both, baby.

        • twilighthours says:

          The same website gives you that stuff, I think. Just change the report type from the drop-down

          People look at zone starts and quality of comp (generated from corsi or fenwick) for how a coach uses and trusts his players, team and individual corsi/fenwick and quality of comp to see how a player is performing. Those are the big ones. There’s one called PDO (essentially save% and shooting% combined) that people use to determine if a player is going through a hot streak or a cold streak.

          Have fun! But don’t turn into a jackarse, you know what I mean?

          • krob1000 says:

            http://www.extraskater.com/teams/on-ice?type=total&sort=pdo

            This has HAbs 4th in NHL in PDO ahead of TAmpa who was 7th in that

          • twilighthours says:

            Some might argue that a high PDO is a bad thing – unsustainable goaltending/shooting %.

            Others might argue that we have one of the best goalies in the league and/or the most accurate shooters in the league, and so having a high PDO is OK.

            Krob, you already know the game buddy. You break down offences and defences, see how the coaches coach, and players adapt. You provide good value, just thought I’d share that.

    • twilighthours says:

      Looking like individual fenwick or corsi, dog. Meaning “how many shots did DD personally direct at net?” Of course he’d be near the bottom.

      If it was just on-ice fenwick or corsi – the shots directed while he was on ice – it would be basically the same as Max’s.

  8. kempie says:

    “something goes in the brain where it’s an all-out war.”

    Hahaha, welcome back Prusty, we missed you.

  9. laGrandeTerreur says:

    One of my final thoughts for the record before this party starts…

    In regards to Bourque being in over White, I don’t see why anyone should expect or even want anything different. While Bourque has under-performed, in what world is Ryan White more talented than he is? There is no evidence that he has been any more impactful or energetic on a game-to-game basis. For all of Bourque’s lack of execution, White lacks the ability to so much as threaten to score.

    In addition, if he were to play at his most intense level, he only instance in which he is useful, he also becomes a penalty liability. Bourque very rarely costs the team in terms of glaring defensive errors or foolish penalties.

    In general, I feel it’s best to have your most talented offensive players on the ice when you’re going to have a tough time scoring goals. If Ryan White being or not being a part of the lineup in a playoff game is a major issue, then this team is screwed.

    • shiram says:

      Both are somewhat marginal player, but White can win draws, play the PK and be a pest to the other team.
      If we’re lucky, Bourque will throw hits and one his shot that usually hits a post will go in.

    • Paz says:

      White out works Bourque 9 games out of 10.

      I take White and his work ethic over Bourque every time.

      Nevertheless, I see your point about talent and about offence, I just think teams win with players like White, and they tend to lose with players like Bourque.

  10. krob1000 says:

    http://www.stats.hockeyanalysis.com/ratings.php?disp=1&db=201314&sit=5v5&pos=forwards&minutes=100&teamid=16&type=individual&sort=ifenwick&sortdir=DESC

    http://www.stats.hockeyanalysis.com/ratings.php?disp=1&db=201314&sit=5v5&pos=forwards&minutes=100&teamid=16&type=individual&sort=ifenwick&sortdir=DESC

    Hmmm I don’t follow these advanced stats but are they basically saying what I have said all along in that DD, Briere, Galchenyuk and Eller and PLeks are all comparable. The first two I clicked on above both have all of them ahead of DD?

    Someone who understands this crap tell me if that is what these advanced stats are saying please…if it is and it is actually factoring in zone starts, linemate strength, pp time,etc then I may have to examine this further and pehaps cahnge my vieew on advanced stats…maybe I am reading it wrong and it is saying the opposite? One of you advanced stat people help me please because everything I click on pretty well has DD below the other center options

  11. Dunboyne Mike says:

    “99 bottles of beer on the wall,
    99 bottles of beer.
    Take one down, pass it around,
    98 bottles of beer on the wall.

    “98 bottles of beer on the wall….”

  12. Hobie says:

    Tick, tick, tick…..

  13. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Ok I went back to the previous thread to see what I missed while I was mowing the lawns and doing various things in an ultimately vain attempt to make the clock go faster.

    And so I would like to thank personally those who helpfully answered my question about who, outside Stamkos, poses the most serious threat.

    Answers:
    global warming
    Kim Jong Il
    Obesity

    Thanks again. Here’s hoping Therrien has factored in your concerns and has a strategy in place that will take account of these threats to our first-round ambitions.

    What’s the freakin time?

  14. UKRAINIANhab says:

    Im Pumped ! YEAH! Haven’t been this excited since Euro 2012 Ukr v Swe

    GOO HABS GOOOOO!!

  15. JohnBellyful says:

    1.) You look familiar. Were you on the cover of People’s Sexiest Woman Alive! issue?
    2.) Excuse me, could you help me out, I’m lost. I think I’ve died and gone to heaven.
    3.) I’ll cover your tab.
    4.) Weise-Briere-Vanek

    Which pickup line would you use to score?

  16. MikeHabs says:

    Underlying numbers: a season review and playoff preview: http://www.allaboutthehabs.ca/underlying-numbers-season-review-playoff-preview/

    I think we can really come out and steal game one. However, concerned by how we were playing lately.

  17. DipsyDoodler says:

    Shots on goal

    1 April: Tampa 33. Montreal: 26
    1 Feb: Tampa: 36 Montreal: 29
    28 Dec: Tampa: 24 Montreal:21
    12 Nov: Tampa: 45 Montreal: 29

    The “advanced” stats tell the same story.

    As I said before, I fear this will not be a fun series for us Hab fans. Unless something drastic changes, Tampa will have the puck most of the time, and will pressure us into turnovers when they don’t.

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

  18. Ghosts of the Forum says:

    Nilan making a good point on TSN radio. I was thinking Gionta should be on the Pleks line to shut down Stammer, but having Gio with Eller and Bourque gives the Habs two decent shutdown lines. Being on the road that doesn’t make matching up with that line as critical.

  19. kempie says:

    Wait, TB has Gudlevskis? Ugh. Forgot about that. Boullion? Borque in over White? Forgot this would be Emelin’s first PO game too.

    I can’t say any of this news has bolstered my confidence very much.

    Still mildly optimistic.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Kristers no doubt played well at Olympics, but that was a complete different scenario with a team playing for its nation. I can’t help but wonder why he stayed in the AHL the rest of the season, if that is his normal playing ability.

      • kempie says:

        Yeah agreed for sure. Still, it’s pretty creepy that they have a guy who has demonstrated the ability to miraculously pull that type of game out of his um, repertoire is the word I think.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Yah I hear ya. Funny enough remember how out of this world Martin Gerber would look for Switzerland, but how down to earth he looked as an NHL’er?

  20. Ozmodiar says:

    Okay, this might be a bit early, but I’m calling a shutout for Carey Price tonight.

    The home team will be a little nervous tonight, and won’t beat #31.

    Let’s say: 2-0 habs

  21. Mavid says:

    4 1/2 hours to go…this day is dragging on for forever…a bunch of folks from work are going out for wings and beers after work..I usually attend but not tonight..Some princess time and then home to prepare for the big game…whooohoooo

    Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

  22. Butterface says:

    …I need a new prescription for my eyes. Apparently I am not seeing what Therrien and Bergevin see in Boullion.

    I have him behind Beaulieu and Tinordi and Murray in my depth chart.

    So you want to increase mobility on the back end ? Then play Beaulieu.

    I am fine how they want to play the forwards. I have no complaints on any switch they want to try. But I just don’t get the love of Boullion and Tinordi over Beaulieu.

    Play Tinordi and Murray in the Boston series. I don’t mind. Play Beaulieu now.

    ***********************
    If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it…..
    ***********************

  23. Kooch7800 says:

    I run a hockey pool at work and today I entered in the teams at lunch and I had to laugh at one of my coworkers who put Josh Gorges in as one of their picks for D. There is no point total for blocked shots or plus/minus.

    Can’t wait for tonight!

  24. FB says:

    Just bought tickets to Game 3. Staying at the Quality Inn Downtown.

    3rd time to Montreal but never had time to actually explore. Any good restaurants in the area? Good places to go after the game?

    Thanks

  25. FlyAngler says:

    I gave Therrien a “B” for his work this season even though I have no doubt that he has forgotten more about hockey than I will perhaps ever know. In game after game in the final stretch of the season, Frankie B. took bad and untimely penalties (i.e. in the 3rd period of a 0-0 game against the Rangers on Saturday night) while also looking dazed and disoriented frequently in the Habs defensive zone. That he is in the lineup tonight clearly demonstrates that while he may in fact be a good coach, Therrien does have “blind spots” that hinder his effectiveness AND the team’s performance. You have to like Frankie, he gives it all every night, but at this point there just isn’t enough upside. I hope that he proves me wrong tonight but I think that the prospects of that are doubtful……

    “Elever le flambeau!…Raise the Torch!”

  26. Black Horse says:

    Boone’s first post: “I have a bad feeling about tonight”

    IT DOESN’T MATTER WHAT YOU FEEL BOONE! LOL …

    ” and the fun begins” – Carey Price

  27. Prop says:

    Richard Labbé ‏@Richardlabbe 23m
    Just saw B.Bishop leave the arena here in Tampa; had a brace on left elbow. #Lightning

    ____________________
    DOOOOOOOOOOOOMED!

  28. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Ok, I’m psyched! It’s 7pm!

    Yeah ok, 7pm GMT, so still 5 hours to go. But it’s something.

    And I mowed the lawns. That has helped, that has helped. Time went by, mm yes, it did, oh yes. The time. It went by-high-high-eye-eye-eye-eye-MWA-HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!>>>>>>>>>>>

  29. Ian Cobb says:

    In one goal games, like these are going to be, PK can not take any high risk plays upon himself without back up, or he will be riding the pines.
    His partner has to be ready to cover for him at every turn if he is allowed to roll into his open game style, which is going to be needed at times.

  30. JUST ME says:

    There is a very good article on la Presse.ca with Marc Bergevin for those of you who can read french.
    Basically he knows that we are at a very important stage now and that his analysis has to start from scratch beginning tonight since he knows what the stakes are.
    Also happy to find out while reading between the lines,that he thinks Tinordi and Beaulieu are not far from being NHL ready having both played around 120 games in the AHL.

    About P.K. he states that his number one priority is to make him a better defensive player since he is a defensmen and that he has everything else. He does not want his players to be robots but want them to remain humble.

    Interresting portrait about a guy that seems to know where he is going and where he is right now.

  31. arcosenate says:

    16 wins in a row!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    You heard it here first.

    Maybe.

  32. Cal says:

    Why I will not spend a second of my time watching HNIC.
    While channel hopping I came across the a-holes there discussing the subject of NO Canadian teams making the playoffs. This, to me, is a HUGE INSULT to Quebec and its citizens,who by the way, are CANADIANS.
    When shitheads like these are allowed to spout whatever crosses their tiny minds and nothing is done to correct this ABSOLUTE LIE, I figure a protest here on this page would be more appropriate than bothering to send those imbeciles a very nasty e-mail or letter.
    In closing, I hope all of you follow my lead and boycott HNIC. They deserve zero viewers in Quebec.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      Give me his name Cal !
      If he works for the CBC, it won’t be for long my friend!

    • Prop says:

      Yup, I saw that same broadcast and literally said “wait, whut?” Then immediately turned to RDS.

      ____________________
      DOOOOOOOOOOOOMED!

    • arcosenate says:

      We prefer poopheads, or dungheads or even bumheads.

      I watch RDS because the picture is better and Benoit Brunet is dreamy.

    • mdp2011 says:

      I will not be watching HNIC, only so much I can put up with. I am sure all they will talk about is Stamkos and the Leafs, Leafs and Stamkos. And Glen Healy is the worst colour guy on the planet.

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        I feel you, mdp. But you are clearly forgetting some doozies, such as Jack Edwards colour guy who, if he saw Chara take out a gun on the ice and shoot a few Habs players would drone on about how “the MONtreal CanadiENS need to find faster players. That way none of them gets hit by bullets. End of. I remember the days of Cournoyer — now there was a skater. And of course he once had a pizza with Ken Hodge right here next door to the Gahden, and the only fight they had was over who would pay, both of them trying to, and I remember thinking, here’s a guy who could fit right in with the Bruins, and we could teach him to speak English real good and we’d protect him better from the less civilised teams in the league and who knows but that he would eventually….’

        Edwards interrupting: “HE SCORES! Sorry, man. What were you saying?”

        • mdp2011 says:

          Thankfully, I have never had the pleasure of watching a hockey game on NESN. No bigger tool than Jack Edwards.

          • Dunboyne Mike says:

            Unless it’s his colour man!

            Keep that record going, mdp! You will definitely live longer and maintain a generally positive outlook on humanity!

    • habfan100 says:

      Who said this? Ironically I’m having a debate with a Leaf fan buddy of mine who doesn’t see the Leafs bias on CBC lol.

      • Mustang says:

        That is difficult to understand because even the Leaf fans must see the unending Go-Leafs-Go attitude of the HNIC crew. Even though the Leafs are finished for the season, I am sure that the talking heads will manage to turn their comments towards the Leafs during virtually every broadcast from now until the cup is awarded in June.

    • habs-fan-84 says:

      I think it was just an honest mistake. Some may call it a Freudian slip, but I think it was just an honest mistake.

    • JohnBellyful says:

      Only Hockey Night in Canada would try to appeal to the lowest common denominator by using zeroes.

  33. Mick says:

    Francis Bouillon is in MT’s D pairings?
    What has Francis done to deserve MT’s approval?
    “You can’t fix stupid”!
    Frankie will screw up somehow and MT will turn the other way. Subban not so much.

  34. Black Horse says:

    Like the 93 Habs, they knew that they were going to win in OT.

    This seasons Habs just know they will win when leading after two periods!

    ” and the fun begins” – Carey Price

  35. Black Horse says:

    I have never worn my jersey for a game this season. Going to start tonight!

    ” and the fun begins” – Carey Price

  36. B says:

    I think the objective in any series is for the visiting team is to win one of the first two games on the road. Here’s hoping they get that done and out of the way tonight.

    –Go Habs Go!–

  37. habsfan0 says:

    It’s important that the Habs score the 1st goal tonight to take the home team crowd out of the game.
    By “home team” I am of course alluding to the Lightning.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Will be interesting to see how many Hab fans in the crowd tonight.

    • Habilis says:

      Yeah it is. I saw a stat somewhere yesterday. I can’t remember the exact quote but the gist is this: In the last 5 playoff series the Habs have played, they have won the 2 when they scored the first goal of the series. They have lost the 3 where they did not.

      Crazy.

  38. aversglay says:

    “The scratches for the Habs in Game 1 are expected to be Travis Moen, Ryan White and George Parros up front and Douglas Murray and Jarred Tinordi on defence.”

    Moen isn’t healthy yet is he?

  39. arcosenate says:

    Bournival isn’t as nervous as I am.

    Anyone else a bit overwhelmed with all the coverage on the Habs the last few days?

    Whether they are Canada’s team or not they are getting all the headlines and all the media attention.

    And it’s pretty weird after being ignored all year.

    Hopefully this will go on for a few rounds…

  40. Mattyleg says:

    Just noticed below that Timo is feeling “stocked” about Bouillon.

    “Stocked”?
    …as in PJ…?

  41. Cambridge Ron says:

    Got a good feeling about the Habs post season, Vanek will shine under the playoff spotlight ?

    Then the next round we’ve all been waiting for….Habs vs Wings.

    Et le but !!!

    • Black Horse says:

      I’d rather play the Broons!

      ” and the fun begins” – Carey Price

    • Habcouver says:

      Vanek shining in the playoff is essential. I want him to show our kids (Gally, Bourni, Eller, and Chucky) what it takes to be an elite player in the playoffs.

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

  42. BJ says:

    Just noticed Dipsey has been sporting his playoff beard for months now. Glad we have some optimists on board.

  43. BJ says:

    Fourth line gets at least one tonight. Grit and speed.

  44. Mattyleg says:

    In other news, does anybody care that the Habs are ‘Canada’s Team’?

    Anybody outside media outlets who are trying their darnedest to encourage the RoC to tune in to their hockey coverage, that is…?

  45. Cambridge Ron says:

    Et le but !!!

  46. Mattyleg says:

    I’m on my phone now, so no replying allowed.
    Burl, just read the same beard article! As always, I am on the cutting edge of fashion. Or years behind. Jury’s still out.

    In other news, we have Evil Dipsy on here today. He’s spittin’ mad!!

  47. rhino514 says:

    So 3 new lines on the eve of the playoffs.
    Interesting.

  48. DipsyDoodler says:

    This “Subban is hated” meme that sports “journalists” are promoting is really starting to piss me off.

    The Tampa “journalist” (linked above) helpfully lists 5 things you should know about the Canadiens for his readers. OK, nice idea.

    So the H doesn’t stand for Habitants (I doubt your readers thought it did) and they have lots of hall of famers and cups.

    Great.

    But did you also know that PK Subban is the most hated player in the NHL? Yes, that’s a top 5 thing to know about the Habs. He knows this because it said so in Sports Illustrated.

    And it was repeated on Sportsnet and in the National Post, and in the Tampa Bay Times.

    Sportsnet’s Headline
    screams: “P.K. Subban tops SI’s list of most hated NHLers”

    But you know what, the SI “list” is just some guy’s opinion. He doesn’t have any data to back him up, and he even admits the reason PK is supposedly “hated” is that he’s flashy. He even ends the article saying the NHL needs more players like him.

    This is BS. Come on journalists – I realize you don’t get handed the sports page at the Tampa Bay Times or Sportsnet.ca because of your creativity or talent, but for God’s sake! Think for yourselves please.

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

  49. Black Horse says:

    At least Cube is possible to score a timely goal!

    ” and the fun begins” – Carey Price

  50. Timo says:

    Notice how DD is never part of an optional skate? But I understand… him and Bouillon are so awesome they don’t need to practice their awesomeness… it just oozes out of them naturally so better just stay at the hotel and get a massage.

  51. The Jackal says:

    Who is this Ferry Kraser everyone keeps talking about and why do we care about him?!

    ______________________
    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  52. HabinBurlington says:

    Hmmm wonder if the NHL Players realize that beards have reached their peak and it is time to remain clean shaven. May have to rethink my avatar….

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/fashion-and-style/10769799/Have-we-reached-peak-beard.html

    • Habcouver says:

      I would like to see the old school buzz cuts, except the helmets today ruin the effect.

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

  53. dhenry1234 says:

    This game’s going to be huge! Habs are going to come out so strong that it literally shocks and destroys tampa’s hopes. 4-0 MTL tonight. Max’s first career playoff Hat trick tonight! You heard it here first!

  54. Ghosts of the Forum says:

    I’d rather have Gio on the line with Pleks and Prust. Seems like a better shutdown line.

    Put Gally with Eller and Bourque and you have some grit and potential to score on the third.

  55. Hobie says:

    Of course it’s the busiest day ever at work and I can’t get on HIO!

    Have fun watching the game tonight everybody!

    GO HABS GO!

    YA Prust baby!

    Carey Price is the best goaltender in the league!!!!

    Peace out!

  56. HabinBurlington says:

    Completely off topic, but for those of us old enough to remember boxing in its heydays, here is a very interesting read. Long, but worth it.

    http://deadspin.com/why-i-fixed-fights-1535114232/all

    • bwoar says:

      Very, very interesting and extremely well-written. Anyone who ever enjoyed a boxing match ought to read this. Poor Leon Spinks. The Tyrone Booze vs. Marc Machain story is killer too.

      Thanks for taking my mind off the playoffs, I was starting to get the jitters!

  57. Timo says:

    Music to my ears… It’s been officially CONFIRMED that Franky Bouillon will be in the lineup. I am stocked.

  58. bwoar says:

    POST YER LINES based on this morning’s practice***

    *Obvious top line*
    Briere-Plekanec-Gallagher
    Bourque-Eller-Gionta
    Bournival-Prust-Weise

    Markov-Emelin
    Subban-Gorges
    Boullion-Weaver

  59. habsfan0 says:

    Bournival will undoubtedly be nervous.
    Hopefully,his nerves don’t get the best of him,because if he makes a mistake early,we won’t see him on the ice the rest of the night.

  60. The Jackal says:

    This is it. Go Habs!
    We have what it takes to play some good hockey this April and for longer, and that starts with a good game today. Let’s go Habs!

    ______________________
    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  61. adamkennelly says:

    T-minus 6 hours and 15 minutes…time for a quick conference call – then 2 hour lunch – followed by hard work out during which I will earn my debauchery for tonight…bar opens at 4 central for pre-game…everyone’s welcome.

  62. mdp2011 says:

    Some guy named Cedric Payette will play for Tampa tonight and says he hopes to make the Habs pay for not drafting him.

    ‏@reporterchris 5m
    Cedric Paquette, expected to play for #TBLightning, is still bitter #habs didn’t draft him. “I don’t think they show a lot of care to me.”

  63. jimmy shaker says:

    MT still might understand what’s going on. Prust as per john lu isn’t privy to where he’s playing tonight…..so danny b, with pleks and gally still a possibility where prust would slot in on the fourth line between weezy and bernie!

    Shaker out!

  64. 24AW says:

    a team going into the 1st round of the playoffs still trying to figure out lines, not much to comment on. Good luck!

  65. habsfan0 says:

    Prust is in tonight?
    Dr. Recchi must have given him a clean bill of health.

  66. DipsyDoodler says:

    Second line is Eller – Gionta – Bourque.

    They will be relied on to add a scoring threat.

    —–
    Moving. Forward.

  67. mdp2011 says:

    So apparently some guy named Cedric Paquette will play for Tampa tonight and says he wants to make the Habs pay for not drafting him.

    Edit:

    Chris Johnston ‏@reporterchris 5m
    Cedric Paquette, expected to play for #TBLightning, is still bitter #habs didn’t draft him. “I don’t think they show a lot of care to me.”

  68. HabinBurlington says:

    What is Kerry Fraser smoking these days, has he not watched how the refs officiate in playoffs?

    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=449511

  69. Habcouver says:

    First game is a statement but it doesn’t make a series.
    Habs need to be consistent and take advantage of their past playoff experience. MT must play PK more and refrain from benching punishment if the first or second PK error is committed.

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

    • Say Ash says:

      First-game winners win something like 70% of series

      • Habcouver says:

        Ash, I’m hedging :) just in case we need an excuse.
        I’m glad the 93 Habs beat those odds in the SCFs.

        If there is a game to steal, it should be this one, for sure.

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

        • Say Ash says:

          That being said, I’d wager the road team that gets a spilt in the first two wins a majority of the series as well.

          • Habcouver says:

            With then gaining “home ice advantage”, the team that started on the road seemed to have the advantage in the old days. In the past 5-6 years, with the parity in the league, I’m guessing the odds aren’t that stacked. Do you have any stats handy to verify?
            Thx bud!

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

        • kalevine says:

          they beat the odds in the first round too, falling behind 2-0 to nords

          • Habcouver says:

            … and forgettably, our boys were up 2-0 on the road, and lost to the frickin’ Goons in 2011. Sorry to bring that up.

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

          • kalevine says:

            you and I have similar memories and sore spots. I can’t forgive the team for not kicking the B’s when they were down and out in 2011. And for winning 3 of 4 regulation decisions and losing 3 of 3 OT decisions. It was a choke, even if they didn’t play badly

  70. HabinBurlington says:

    Happy for Bournival and Emelin making their playoff debuts for Habs.

  71. bwoar says:

    Seriously, did anyone doubt he’d be in?

    Boullion, though…. sheesh. I’ve been hard on Beaulieu and Meh on Tinordi, but either guy would be better.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      This is the one move by MT I pretty much can’t endorse, but I suppose I need to bite my tongue, at least until after the game, or during or now even.

    • Le Jadester says:

      Nope, I posted it 1:30 am.
      I heard last night after talking to some of his buddies here in London.

      Anyways, I’m thinking it should be Soobie and Gorges straight up against the Stamkos line….but I got a feeling MT’s gonna go with Markie and Emelin ?

      Habs, OLE !

    • Mattyleg says:

      As I said on the other thread, I don’t think I could bear watching the TB forwards skate past Tiny or Crankshaft like they were standing still.

      This is the right decision for the first game, I believe, and as bad blood starts to come out over the first couple of games, we put one of them in to create a physical presence in game 3 or 4.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • monmick says:

        So you don’t mind seeing the TB forwards skating past FrankieBoo?

        ~~~> Mathematically eliminated…

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Nobody skates by Frankie B! NOOOOOOObody!

          Okay yah, I agree Mon!

        • monmick says:

          There are 2 things that can stop a forward from skating past a D-man: (1) D-man speed and agility, and (2) a well-timed, hard hit.

          In the case of the former, you have to keep doing it all game long. In the case of the latter, once or twice per series in usually sufficient…

          ~~~> Mathematically eliminated…

        • kalevine says:

          indeed, I have seen many opposing forwards sweep around Frankie like he was a pylon on its side. At least with Tinordi there is a chance he learns from it, and with Crankshaft there is a chance the forward never does it again, to anyone…kidding, just kidding!

      • bwoar says:

        What monmick said. Only they don’t always skate by him, sometimes they have to brush him aside a bit as they pass.

        I was a fan, but he’s past due to retire and it’s not a decision I’m comfortable with.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          This is obviously the trust factor MT has for Frankie, and where I am concerned his longstanding respect for Frankie may cloud his judgement.

          • kalevine says:

            d’ya think?
            I’m not concerned, it’s a given
            but I will say one thing for Bouillon. Although the only team in the league willing to pay him a big league salary at this point is probably the Habs, he showed last game that he’s willing to put himself in harm’s way for a teammate if that what it takes to earn that salary. He’s earned my respect, but he should still be on the bench

    • Just A Guy says:

      Having Prust in the lineup, provided he doesn’t separate his shoulder on the first dump in, is huge for team identity. Moen too as much as other people don’t like to admit it.

      Bouillion is faster then Murray, Tinordi has shown himself to be a bit weak when it comes to forwards challenging him with speed and Beaulieu isn’t a known commodity yet.

      Not saying Beaulieu isn’t the best choice. I think his retread in the AHL and the Olympic break let us forget how ready for the NHL he actually is.

    • Habcouver says:

      Cube earned (more) points with MT for standing up to Dorsett.

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

  72. Strummer says:

    Good to see Prust back in the line-up.
    Second line though?

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

  73. Stanley Cup or Bust ! says:

    Go Habs Go

  74. B says:

    Whenever Montreal and Tampa meet in the playoffs, the winner goes on to win the cup. This should be fun!

    –Go Habs Go!–

    • Stanley Cup or Bust ! says:

      And in the 5th OT period the stalemate was finally broken by …..

    • Habcouver says:

      Happened only in 2004.
      What I recall within the past 10-20 years is that our boys played teams like Carolina (2002?) and Goons (2011) both of whom won the cup from us! :/

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

      • kalevine says:

        I think the Canes were 2006. 2002 was also the Canes (in round 2, the series so clearly turning around on Therrien’s meltdown that only a deep Cup win could help me forgive him at this point) but I don’t think they won that year


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