Rebuilding Oilers still need time

We start off with a little western swing music as the 15th place Canadiens’ western swing continues in Edmonton on Thursday with a game against the 1th place Oilers.

In league-wide terms, the Habs are 28th overall and Edmonton is two points behind in 29th. So there’s a lot on the line…well, there really would be if this was, let’s say, the English Premier League and the bottom teams at season’s end were relegated to a lower league. Of course, since the bottom three get dumped from the EPL, both would be going anyway. But this is not the EPL and neither will be relegated, so never mind.

This is one of the few games on the NHL schedule these days that has zero playoff implications. The Habs are, no doubt, thinking about escaping the basement. They are now five points south of Carolina after the ‘Canes OT loss Wednesday night. For the Oilers, nine points ahead of Columbus and eight points behind Minnesota, they’re almost certainly not going to move up or down. They’ve lost three of their last four.

Still, players on both sides are playing for their jobs next season. For the young Oilers — hoping that down the road they can replicate what the Senators, if not the Blues, have done this season — it’s a chance to make an impression on management.

One Oiler who has already done that is Jordan Eberle, who scored his 30th goal of the season on Tuesday night in San Jose, just 10 seconds after the opening faceoff. His 30 goals ranks eighth in the league.

It’s not the NHL record for fastest goal; that’s five seconds (held by Doug Smail, Bryan Trottier and Alex Mogilny). It’s not even the Oiler’s record, which belongs to Wayne Gretzky at eight seconds. Still, it’s pretty impressive and so is Eberle, the smallish right winger who has 16 points in his last 17 games. Last season, he had 18 goals and 25 assists. He’s now at 30 and 33, better than a point a game.

Edmonton beat the Sharks in the post-game skills competition but they still struggle with consistency. The expectation after collecting so many talented forwards with high draft picks and a 9-3-2 start to the season was that the rebuilding Oilers were stepping up this year and contend for the playoffs. That didn’t happen.

“It’s pretty clear to me that people are a little impatient with the growth of this team,” coach Tom Renney said after the Sharks game. “I don’t think we were picked to win the Stanley Cup this year and that’s frustrating when you’re an avid fan. There’s no question everyone has an opinion on how we do our jobs and that’s fair game.”

Learning patience is part of the lessons involved in rebuilding a team.

Among the other young forwards, Taylor Hall has better numbers than last season — he’s gotten 49 points to date after 42 last year. First overall pick Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has had a good, but injury-plagued, rookie season. Sam Gagner, who had the big eight point night in February, has equaled his point total of last year already and turned his minus-17 rating from 2010-11 to a plus-five this year. But Magnus Paajarvi hasn’t produced after a promising rookie year and is now in the minors.

The established players on this team haven’t been able to provide the scoring needed. Ales Hemsky’s production is well below his best seasons, Ryan Smyth’s numbers are OK but not great, and Shawn Horcoff has never put up points commensorate with his big contract.
The Oilers suffered a number of injuries on the blueline this year and lost Andy Sutton twice to long suspensions. Lacking a good defensive defenseman, they made a move at the deadline to get  Nick Schultz from the Wild in exchange for puck mover Tom Gilbert. Gilbert has become expendable with the emergence of Jeff Petry in that role this season.

The 24-year-old Petry, a former collegiate star at Michigan State and a second round pick in ’06, was in the minors earlier in the season, but after his recall in October has played with more confidence. Hes now regularly topping 20 minutes a game, being used against the opposition’s top forwards. He’s got a very good all-around game, a smooth skater, good passer and sees the ice well. He’s also got a hard shot and kills penalties. He’s worth watching.

Some of the veteran defenseman haven’t gotten the job done. Ryan Whitney is at minus-18 on the season in just 35 outings. Sutton was a healty scratch last game.

Former first rounder Devin Dubnyk has split the netminding with veteran Nikalai Khabibulin and both have had their ups and downs. Dubnyk had a good third period, OT and shootout against the Sharks so he’ll likely get the call against the Habs.

Here’s how the Oilers could line up on Thursday:

Taylor Hall, Sam Gagner, Jordan Eberle
Ryan Smyth, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Ales Hemsky
Ben Eager, Shawn Horcoff, Ryan Jones
Lennart Petrell, Eric Belanger, Linus Omark

Ladislav Smid, Jeff Petry
Ryan Whitney, Corey Potter
Theo Peckham, Nick Schultz

Devan Dubnyk
Nikolai Khabibulin


  1. CF says:

    REBUILDING OILERS!!!!!! Give me a break! Rebuilding my ass.
    The entire management team in Edmonton are an embarassment to the league, it’s only because they’re in Edmonton that they get a free pass. I posted this about four months ago regarding the sickening display that is Tom Renney talking about a culture change in Edmonton, alluding to the fact that he, along with Lowe et al have this great plan put in action that starts from the top, or was it the bottom, that will bring greatness back to the organization.

    Sickening I say. I’ll tell you what their game plan is, their great blueprint to success:

    Here it is folks:
    They have figured it out. If we finish in the bottom, the league gives us the best players available!! Every year we can do this. It’s simple!!
    Man, what a plan. After three years in a row, the league should adopt a clause that says you can only have a first overall, or top three, three years in a row…………..that’s it. After that, your relegated to numbers 17-30. Lets put some pressure on ownership and management for F*cks sake. Give me a break, Tom Renney, what a joke. Makes me sick.
    With that being said. We need a top three pick, much more than wins in the last few weeks of the season. Anyone who thinks otherwise is as stupid as Tom Renney.
    The difference is, after this year. I don’t want to finish in the bottom of the league ever again. Just give us that one guy to build around, top end talent, someone to take pressure off Price and Subban.
    And then give us a GM who can go out and get some friggin toughness on the back end, two….. big, mean, tough guys. And one other thing, one of them needs to have a cannon from the point.
    And then go get us a coach who inspires players and fans alike.

    • jhab93 says:

      When you think about pittsburgh and Fleury, Malkin, Crosby and Staal.. Edmonton is just starting.

      Thats the way the cookie crumbles

      • REB says:

        One way to reduce the impact of ‘tanking’ is to reverse the order of draft every 2nd round. If you get the 1st pick, your drasft sequence would be 1,60,61,120,121,180,181…this way you don’t get the cream of each round. Bettman should still like this, as the goal of parity would still be attained.

  2. ed lopaz says:

    Carey Price is probably the most “chill” player on the Habs. His

    style is relaxed, laid back, don;t get too high or too low.

    Price is not going to change his personality 180 degrees to suit

    the insanity and absolutely uptight and stubborn character that

    Roy brings to hockey, and to goaltending in particular.

    Roy is a tyrant – a take no prisoners, SOB, who comes to the rink

    every day with fire in his eyes.

    Hiring Patrick Roy to coach the Habs is like telling Price we don’t

    want you here long term, we have decided to go in a completely opposite direction.

    It will not happen unless the Habs have given up on Price – which they probably have not.

    Very, Very, bad idea!!

    • HardHabits says:

      Crap. I think you just outed me. 😉 But I disagree. Roy would show Price the right way to throw his hands up in frustration at the crowd.

  3. habs17 says:

    Roy would be the worst coach in the world, especially for price, roys im better then any1 ego would get in the way, price would play one bad game and roy would sit him for a month. Roys the wrong guy for price

    I SUPPORT (every1 knows who i support)

  4. HardHabits says:

    Here`s my solution, to satisfy Habs fans and Molson’s penchant for cronyism and to put the Habs back on the map.

    President: Jacques Lemaire
    GM: Vincent Damphousse
    Coach: Patrick Roy
    Assistants: Larry Robinson, (you’ll love this one) Mario Tremblay

    get rid of Gainey, Gauthier and Martin
    keep Trevor Timmins

    • Cardiac says:


      “There’s genius everywhere, but until they turn pro, it’s like popcorn in the pan. Some pop… some don’t.”
      – Jerry Maguire

    • JoeC says:

      Patrick Roy would make Ron Wilson look like the best coach in the league!

      Hes coaching KIDS, not over confident, millionares who look at the game as a job unlike the kids in the Q.

      Till Roy proves he can coach millionares into actually winning a few games, why would we want another unproven coach?

    • habsfan0 says:

      I would make Patrick Roy the goaltender coach.
      Assuming that Price doesn’t kill him,Roy would then be in consideration for a head coaching job later on.

    • RetroMikey says:

      President: Andre Savard (Lemaire will never come back to Montreal and play under the pressure here ever again)
      GM: Doug Risebrough (Damphousse can criticize the team all he wants on l’Antichambre but he is so green).
      Coach: Guy Carbonneau (Patrick Roy will have a nervous breakdown under the eye of the media and the fans, do we really want to do that? He still has a long way to coach in the NHL)
      Assistants: Rick Nattress ( he know his hockey), and Larry would never come back as well to coach the team) and Bob Hartley
      Get rid of Gainey Gauthier and Timmins but keep Martin as a special advisor for the team,

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

    • Sal from the Hammer says:

      HH, I’m not necessarily opposed to Saint Patrick as coach. He has proven that he has coaching skills, for sure. My concern is that he has Mario Tremblay disease: the penchant for thinking he’s Scotty Bowman. No one is Scotty, except Scotty.

      MAYBE, Carbo has learned a thing or two from his last attempt, and, assuming Gainey will no longer be looking over his shoulder, he can be a more complete coach. I think that, given his inability land land a job elsewhere, he might have figured things out. His coaching/teaching skills, were not an issue, my understanding is, had problems relating to his players. It seems, wheen it comes to former Habs, the better the player, the more difficulty they have coaching players that cannot live up to their expectations. Tremblay, Carbo, and perhaps Roy, all come from a tradition of excellence and achievements. Carbo/Robinson, or Robinson/Carbo. Two guys who have been behind a bench before and understand modern players, might just be the combo required to take the habs to the next level…

      Vinnie Damphouse for GM. Sure!

      Not sure about Lemaire for Pres…. still don’t appreciate what he did to Guy. That’s just personal for me, not necessarily a knock against his potential as a GM. Speaking of Guy, I don’t know why his name never comes up? I recently had a chance to speak with him at a local function, had a nice chat about the current state of things Hab related, and he is as passionate and knowledgeable about the Habs as anyone. But, I have to admit, I’m clouded by my devotion to Guy, as the greatest Hab of my generation….Still!

      Anyway, just throwing it out there…


  5. Bill says:

    @ Matty: From Eliot to Auden, you’re on a roll! Keep it up 🙂

  6. Bripro says:

    The team bashing continues.
    Now there are assaults on Gio, who’s not even in the lineup.
    All this frustration…sounds like a brain fart to me!

  7. Mattyleg says:

    For Bill and any other ‘readers’ out there:

    March 1, 2012
    (with apologies to WH Auden)

    I sit in one of the dives
    On Ontario Street
    Uncertain beyond reason
    As the clever hopes expire
    Of a low dishonest season:
    Waves of anger and fear
    Circulate over the bright
    And darkened quartiers of Montreal,
    Obsessing our private lives;
    The unmentionable non-playoff pall
    Offends the slushy March night.

    Accurate statsmanship can
    Unearth the whole offence
    From Morenz until now
    That has driven a culture mad,
    Find what occurred with Staubitz,
    What prompts PG to grab
    A psychopathic bod:
    I and the public know
    What all schoolchildren learn,
    Those to whom evil is done
    Do evil in return.

    **More to come!!**

    I’ve been saaaaved!!
    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  8. centre hice says:

    3 things to improve next season:

    1- assemble a solid 4th line.
    For years the typical 4th line for any given game is an over the hill vet, an AHL call up, and a defense playing forward. I’m sick of the Habs bottom six compiled of players not good enough to crack the top six, the left overs. Assemble a gritty, checking 4th line and use them like a checking line should be used. Ryan White is a good start. Brandon Prust (NYR) is UFA in my opinion the best 4th liner in the league. SIGN BRANDON PRUST!

    2- improve the D.
    Subban, Gorges, and Emelin are a good start. Hopefully Markov will come back as good as he was. But Kaberle, Campoli, Weber, Diaz are terrible and need to be replaced.

    3- a winger for Plekanec.
    Assuming Plekanec is not traded, he needs a winger to produce with him. With the MaxPac/DD/Cole line set the Habs need another line to produce offence. I think Pleks will be paired with Gio and they need someone with talent to play with them.

    • HabsFan1111 says:

      1- Could not agree more, Prust is pound for pound the toughest guy in the league today. Moen-White-Prust would be a seriously difficult 4th line to play against.

      2- Bryan Allen

      3- Bourque has had three 20 goal seasons (hopefully get his 4th shortly), put him with talented linemates and he may produce what we need IMO.

  9. boing007 says:

    Stu Hackel,
    An Otis Redding suggestion: ‘I’ve been loving you too long’.

    Richard R

  10. Dr.Rex says:

    I would like to officially welcome the Leafs to the Nail Yakupov sweepstakes.

  11. HabsFan1111 says:

    How could Renney actually say people are being ‘impatient’?!? They have missed the playoffs ever since Pronger and Roloson took them to the finals as an 8th seed in 2006, including finishing dead last 2 years in a row and ‘winning’ the lottery. I understand no one wants to play there, but I don’t think impatient is the right word for their fans. They’ve been at the bottom long enough, Oiler fans deserve at least a playoff birth and soon!

    How the mighty have fallen ….

  12. jon514 says:

    How come everyone is going off on Gio? Captain Montreal has 28 and 29 goal seasons before getting injured. Why would we want to buy him out?

    “Let’s be clear on the facts…”

  13. DorvalTony says:

    Dispose of Kaberle, Gomez, Campoli, Markov and Gionta and imagine what we could afford starting with Zach Parise` and a dirty d-man.

    “A proof is a proof. What kind of a proof? It’s a proof. A proof is
    a proof. And when you have a good proof, it’s because it’s proven.” – Jean Crooktien

    • HardHabits says:

      4.25 + 7.4 + 1.75 + 5.75 + 5 = 24 million wasted dollars. And people wonder why the Habs are a lottery team.

      • The Dude says:

        Lol, so true H.H . and next seasons a last place finish as well….what a DISASTER. Whats scary is some Fans in denial here (omg)! Anything to save a fragile ego,eh. Gauthier and Gainey SUCK!

    • punkster says:

      Wait…what’s the size requirement for “smurf” in your world?

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

    • punkster says:

      We don’t need no more stinkin’ smurfs.

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

    • punkster says:

      Come on Tony, we need your definition of “smurf”.

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

    • punkster says:

      Ya know, ’cause you been goin’ on ‘n on ’bout midgets and smurfs and little people and all for a couple of years now.

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

    • punkster says:

      Hey, maybe we could make him captain. I mean he’s a whole two inches taller than the last guy you wanted to have the “C”.

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

    • punkster says:

      Cammallari for captain. Remember, you said that just down the page here.

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

    • HabsFan1111 says:

      Parise is better than anyone on our roster hands down, I would give up anyone other than Price and PK for him personally. He has lived in Crosby’s shadow since they were drafted the same year, but he has put up phenominal numbers and plays an excellent two way game. He will be a mammoth addition to whoever is lucky enough to sign him (although he’ll probably resign in NJ)

    • joeybarrie says:

      And how exactly did you want us to get Parise?
      Brad Richards was the big FA last season, and I don’t think his 45 points are worth 6.66 million.
      Who is this dirty dman we could have gotten? Cause Wiz has only played 39 games, and I also do not think his -21 in half the games the rest of the team played is worth 5.5.

      By the way, Markov and Gios cap could be eliminated if we saw something available that was worth it.

      Just cause you think it, doesn’t mean we can actually get Parise with old junk.

  14. third generation haber says:

    About Burke,

    Lots of good points here, but his worst move was a deadline move to bring in Martin Gerber.

    The team was clealy out of it, but Burke’s ego couldn’t deal with it, so he brought in Gerber.

    Result: The leafs went up in the standings, instead of drafting Matt Duchesne, they got Kadri!

    Instead of drafting Tyler Seguin and Dougie Hamilton, they have the one demensional Kessel.

    If our habs tank a second year, I can definitely live with it!

    2012 and 2013 lottery picks, 5 second round picks in the next 2 drafts,

    plus Price, Subban, Pacioretty, DD, Emellin, Eller, White, Leblanc, Beaulieu, Tinordi, Ellis, Holland, Gallagher, and Bournival.

    Some things are worth waiting for!!!!
    Gauthier (and the guy who replaces u) don’t pull a Burke!

    j.p. murray

    • RGM says:

      I would grossly prefer that this team be competitive next year. I can’t imagine having to bear another season in the basement.

      GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is probably not our year!
      “Scott Gomez is an elite NHL player” – VancouverHab

      Chat with me on Twitter @TheRealRGM81

      • third generation haber says:

        I hear u, but

        An extra year in the tank could be the difference between returning to mid-level standings and becoming a cup contender in the next 3-4 years.

        I actually enjoy watching the habs now because it’s all about what the future holds instead of winning and losing. Kinda like being an Oiler fan I guess.

        Unlike being Leaf fans, we know our 1st round pick will actually play for us!

        j.p. murray

  15. Strummer says:

    When watching l’Antichambre last night I saw Bergeron(and Tremblay) making reference to fact that the captain Gionta, though injured, accompanied the team to Florida but not Alberta.
    He proceded to make the signal of a woman’s curvaceuos figure when mentioning Florida.
    As my French is limited- was he taking a shot at the captain?

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

    • shiram says:

      Your first mistake was watching the Antichambre in the first place.No sense trying to make sense of their nonsense.

    • Bill says:

      You don’t need French to understand L’Antichambre:
      -Opening shot of panel looking serious and superior
      -Softball question about how bad Anglo coach is
      -Four panelists muse smugly about how bad Anglo coach is
      -Four panelists imply how much better they would be as coach
      -Panelists take turns criticizing Anglo captain/other players
      -Panelists fantasize about Francophone superstars, with highlights
      -Panelists laugh too hard at each other’s bad jokes
      -Panelists look smugly into camera as it fades to black.

      Full Breezer 4 Life

    • Malreg says:

      The reason he accompanied the team to Florida was because of the trade deadline. The captain has to be available to the media after the deadline deals.

    • joeybarrie says:

      Staying with the team and teams doctors is easier going to Florida. Hit the beach, come back in a few days. No problem.
      Going on a longer west coast trip is considerably different.
      So these guys, whether they be French or English, are trying to stir the pot. Not too much to get excited for now. I’m surprised they didn’t say something about him being spotted at the beach drinking corona’s on Molson’s dime, and blah blah blah.
      I remember a lot of nonsense about Latendresse getting fat on poutines and of course as soon as he is gone, we all want our French guy back cause his work ethic was so great.

    • DorvalTony says:

      Some captain. He’s a bust. Even Keane and Koivu were better. IMO even Pierre Turgeon was better. Cammy would have been better.

      “A proof is a proof. What kind of a proof? It’s a proof. A proof is
      a proof. And when you have a good proof, it’s because it’s proven.” – Jean Crooktien

    • Bripro says:

      Sorry to disagree (to a limited extent) with you guys on the Antichambre panelists.
      Vinny Damphousse brings a true level of hockey knowledge and credibility, as does Carbo.
      If you were talking about Alain Chantelois, that bigoted separatist, I’d agree.
      The host, Stephane Langdeau is the only one who harps on english issues now, and I think he’s been instructed to cool his jets….especially since I and a few other bilingual viewers wrote in how they were alienating their anglophone viewers.
      Chantelois hasn’t been back on.
      As a matter of fact, our anglophone rep, P.J.Stock is the least credible of the bunch.
      Gaston Therrien is a very good technical analyst, and François Gagnon has close ties to the room and players.
      I like Bergie because he’s funny, but I’d can Stock, Therrien and Mario Tremblay.

  16. Bill says:

    I need a laugh. Could one of you guys try explaining to me exactly how the Habs’ lousy season is actually the fault of GM Gauthier? Be detailed and opinionated.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Cuz…. I read that earlier and often!

    • shiram says:

      The media says so.

    • habs03 says:

      I don’t think he is as bad as ppl make him seem, there is for sure a witch hunt vs him, specially by the media. But he has made some mistakes, firing JM, and I didn’t like the D going into the season, even if Markov was healthy we would have gone with

      We need another top 4 D-men because a guy like Gill didn’t have much in the tank.

      • Don’t forget. We had Blair Betts and Jeff Woywitka to start the season. I feel Woywitka could have been the big bruising warm body that would have supported the 3rd pairing.

        PG was given a huge hole to fix by BG…McDonaugh….oh dear lord that was a mistake. I support Gomez…but he’s done here.

        Can anyone shed light on Huberdeau rumors? Or, here’s mine since we have so many 2nds.

        Our 2nd overall (2012), 2 2nd rounders (2012 and 2013) to Florida
        for Huberdeau and Florida’s 1st in 2012.


        What do we really need other than patience?

    • Mike D says:

      *hand in the air like an enthusiastic 1st grader*
      OOH! OOH! OOH! – I got one

      Because he’s a vegan and lives in Vermont and doesn’t speak to the media very much?

      – Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

    • LafleurGuy says:

      ’cause he should have known both Markov AND Gionta would be disabled and unable to contribute anything.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

    • punkster says:

      Hey Bill, I’ll tackle this from 2 directions though neither will provide any concrete reason as to how it is his fault.

      First, like I said yesterday it’s the blame syndrome that people feel has to be leveled at someone, anyone, as long as blame is firmly placed. The list of reasons can be debated ad nauseam though few on that list will ever be unanimously agreed to by the debaters.

      Second, as explained to me by a friend today, it simply doesn’t matter why or how. This is Montreal and it matters only that a cup has not been won under his watch therefore he must go. If the next one wins a cup within one or two or three years then he/she will buy themselves another one, two or three year window to do it again. No excuses.

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

    • Strummer says:

      He tap-danced on Markov’s knee
      Drugged Gill to make him skate slower
      Subversive physiotheraputic skullduggery on Gionta, Cammy,Moen Spacek
      Hypnotzed Price into thinking he can’t stop a beachball in a shootout

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

    • Bill says:

      Can’t believe no-one took the bait on this one.

      EDIT: never mind, of course someone did!

      Full Breezer 4 Life

      • Bripro says:

        Because we’re now accustomed to the HIO rhetoric.
        Stirring the pot, mixing it up, creating confusion, ad-nauseum, looking for a fight, enhancing hostilities.
        The game is only late tonight.
        Try asking your question after the game, but come wearing your bullet-proof vest.

    • third generation haber says:

      He mishandled our defence and coaching situation terribly

      Without the Wiz and Hamrlik, he gambled on Markov’s knee and 2 guys that had never played in the NHL.

      He fired our coaches while we were 1 game below 500.

      Then he made the trade that made 29 other GM’s bust a gut laughing. He took-on Kaberle

      Those are the details, my opinion is that Gauthier has been eating retard sandwiches and should accompany Gomez and Kaberle to the AHL.

      End of story.

      j.p. murray

    • Jan_pronounced_Yan says:

      I don’t think that the season is ALL on the shoulders of Pierre Gauthier. The players are the ones who have to perform on the ice, and a number of them have underperformed this season. That being said, Gauthier does bear a lot of responsibility, since he is the one who chose this group of players.

      Good moves heading into this season or during the season:
      -Eric Cole. Nuff said.
      -Bringing Emelin over.
      -Gorges signing.
      -Cammalleri trade (decent return, but got rid of a bad attitude who was underachieving and had a HUG cap hit)
      -Gill trade.

      Bad moves:
      -Not having any kind of back up plan for Markov not being ready or Subban not being able to pick up the slack.
      -Panicking by signing Campoli, who has been useless.
      -Panicking by trading for Kaberle.
      -Firing an Assistant Coach on gameday.
      -Firing a coach who, while boring, at least had these guys playing some structured hockey. He also did it at a time that made no sense.
      -Completely misjudging the backlash that would occur from the Cunneyworth hire, thus creating more distractions around a team that needed to focus on getting better on the ice.
      -Panicking in the media by re-enforcing Cunneyworth’s interim status, thus giving the players reason to tune him out.
      -Putting the Assistant GM behind the bench when he has no place there.

      Gauthier has made some decent transactions and seems to be a decent amateur talent evaluator. I think his evaluation of existing pro talent isn’t that great. The main reason he has to go is that he has no leadership skills. He is secretive, seemingly paranoid, and is a control-freak. He has treated some players with no class (Spacek and Gill) and his insistence on using Mister/Monsieur shows that he has no desire to make any personal connection with the players.

      Say what you will about Bob Gainey, but at least the players respected him. At least he showed a willingness to stand up for players both publicly and privately. Gauthier is just a paranoid suit pulling strings. The players have no leadership in the front office, on the bench or on the ice right now.

      That’s why he needs to go.

    • ont fan says:

      It’s PG’s fault because he is just stupid. No one makes terrible trades like him except maybe Burke, Rutherford,Sather,Snow,Murray,Feaster,Fletcher,Lowe,Howson, well you get the idea. But ours is the stupidest.

    • Cal says:

      “The idiot didn’t consult an accurate crystal ball to foresee any and all problems with the Habs. Fire him immediately.” The Amazing Kreskin.
      “Gobbledygook,gobbledygook and balderdash!” Nostradamus
      “He no eat meat- he no good!” Grog the Caveman.

    • Malreg says:

      I actually don’t mind most of the hockey related moves Gauthier has made.

      Signing Cole, trading Cammalleri, the Gill trade, bringing over Emelin and signing Diaz, trading up to draft Tinordi, signing Gorges long-term, signing Desharnais to a cheap 2 year deal, were all solid deals IMO.

      It’s more HOW he does business that annoys me. Firing Pearn 2 hours before a game, trading Cammalleri in the middle of a game, apologizing for hiring Cunneyworth, etc. These are the things people in the hockey world take note of.

      That being said, I wouldn’t riot at the Bell Center if he was still the GM next season.

      • Jan_pronounced_Yan says:

        I feel the same way.

        Transaction-wise, he’s probably had more good ones than bad ones. Obviously, he has made some mistakes, but so does pretty much every GM.

        It’s his personality that just doesn’t seem suited to leading a hockey team. He seems difficult to deal with and like I said above, I don’t see him providing the leadership that this team needs.

    • joeybarrie says:

      Well, to be honest, our crappy season is PGs fault cause of his moves from the summer.
      In retrospect, if we had of kept Wiz and Hamr, we would probably be in the playoff picture right now.
      But if Markov’s knee rehab hadn’t of gone bad it would have been different too.
      He didn’t really have a good contingency plan. But I’m not sure there was one out there.
      And I don’t believe paying Wiz such a high salary was a good idea, in fact it was a bigger risk.
      There are very few teams in the league that can lose their best player for the entire season and extended injuries to key players and still make it work.
      Pittsburgh can, cause they drafted a top 5, 5 years in a row. That’s pretty much 10 years of sucking.

    • habs_54321 says:

      he fired JM just as the habs were turning the corner and playing good strong hockey, creating a massive distraction to the team and controversy among the fans and worsening it by hiring the anglo coach and then apologizing publicly,.,.,… he then trades the purest sniper on the team in the middle of one of the biggest games of the season a game were we were down by 1 goal…,.,.,

      he’s wasted/exhausted numerous assets over the years with the assistance of bob gainey trading away picks and prospects and even established players and only getting adequate value in return 1/10 times,

  17. boing007 says:

    Captain Ob(l)(i)vious.

    Richard R

  18. The Dude says:

    I’m glad the Habs are sizing up next year with DD,G-Love,Gio,Plecs and Gallager in the line-up there’s big moneys in elevator inserts!

  19. HFX-HabFan says:

    So we have two second rounders in this year’s draft, and three for next year.

    I think we should package our two 2nds to get a late 1st rounder, and use it on one of the high-risk, high-reward types: Galchenyuk, maybe Frk.

    We all know the lowdown on Galchenyuk, and I doubt he’d still be available in the 20s, but Frk was in the early discussions as a top ten pick for 2012 at this time last year. His season was delayed because of a concussion, and his draft rankings have fallen because of that, but he has the offensive upside that others in this draft don’t.

  20. boing007 says:

    Love that Western Swing. Anybody here familiar with Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks? Looks like Dan was a fan of Bob.

    Richard R

  21. JamesBonedOO7 says:

    Must-lose game tonight.

    Fail for Nail

  22. HabinBurlington says:

    On my way to work this morning the Fan590 (Sportsnet Radio) the morning hosts had Kypreos on and they were already talking about what value if any Lupul has to be traded.

    The dilemma Burke faces is that the team he built for Ron Wilson is not a team Carlyle wants. He wants big bodies that fight, hit and play a hardnosed game. Even the best prospect they have Colborne, while big, does not play physical. I can see the Leafs having to make major off season changes to appease the new coach.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Lupul will be gone. He hates Carlyle with a passion. I think Burke should be in some hot water in the off season. His rebuild has the team in the same position in the standings 4 years later….His should have not traded for Kessel so he would have sequin…..Kadri is looking like a bust…the komi contract….finger contract…..
      we think pg is bad lol

      “Like Canadian Hip hop..check us out

      • Bill says:

        Finger wasn’t him, was it? But yeah, questionable moves all around.

        Full Breezer 4 Life

      • PureGuava says:

        Finger was Fletcher’s signing, and Burke bought him out. Gainey offered Komisarek 4.5, Burke 5 – and the true value of a healthy Andre Markov was never more evident. Kadri can play, but it will be a while. Think of him as the Leafs Mike Ribeiro. The fact that he was allowed to sign Carlyle for 3.25 seasons while paying Wilson not to coach next season, tells me that Burke still has the faith of the MLSE faithful.

        I just don’t think you can build a team around Phaneuf and Kessel – and their former teams felt the same.

        Reimer was John Ferguson’s draft pick, and he almost got them into the playoffs on his own last season.

        I agree though, Burke has put together a terrible team. If Lupol hadn’t been playing over his head all season, this team is fighting for the bottom of the East too.

        “Of course I’m crazy, but that doesn’t mean I’m wrong.”
        – Robert Anton Wilson

        • Kooch7800 says:

          Sorry I thought finger was Burke but you are right. They are too heavy on their defense and they don’t have a goalie. The Monster was Burke’s big move as well.
          Kadri was on the third line of the marlies the last game I saw against the dogs….I wouldn’t be surprised if they move him.

          • Strummer says:

            Burke also gave Reimer a 3 year deal-though relatively small- after he a good last half of last season.
            His goalie signings have been sub-par

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

        • ABHabsfan says:

          When I lived out west, everyone around the Flames, fans and media couldn’t believe they got rid of Phaneuf and got actual humans in return let alone NHL players. He has a helluva shot if you tee it up for him but he can’t skate backwards

          “man, I love winnin’; you know, it’s like better than losin’?”-
          Ebby Calvin “Nuke” Laloosh

          • HabinBurlington says:

            There is an argument to be made that they got NHL players in returns, humans yes.

            Hagman, Stajan (whom they stupidly then signed to an extension) Mayers, and probably the best of the bunch, Ian White, who they got rid of for nothing I think.

        • gohabsgo25 says:

          reason kadri is not playing well is hes a habs fan and he wants to screw the leafs over.
          i think the kid has potential.
          who would do this trade

          3rd rounder


          toronto gets there tough winger in borque we get rid of his lazy ass and we get kadri who wants to play for the habs.

      • Sportfan says:

        LOL PG is bad really bad, but Burke BLEW it on so many deals and none deals haha kind of funny to watch , i feel bad for Lupul though he’s probably FFS Carlyle again!

        • Kooch7800 says:

          and the best thing is all my leaf buddies think he is God of all Gm’s

          “Like Canadian Hip hop..check us out

          • Mustang says:

            He must be really, really good because Hockey Night in Canada shows him every time there is a break in the on-ice action. I am surprised that they don’t show him even when the Tranna Maple Loafs aren’t playing.

            By the way, does anyone else notice that there is a Leafs article in the Montreal Gazette almost every day. I guess that Tranna really is the center of the Universe.

          • Bill says:

            Everyone buys his act. He’s seriously a performer. He cops this “too-cool-for-school” thing and acts like he knows all. I just about vomited over his rolled up sleeves/un-knotted tie press conference … so contrived.

            It’s a cult of personality. Seriously, no-one in Toronto seems to have noticed that nothing has changed in his four years.

            Full Breezer 4 Life

      • ont fan says:

        Lupul must of had a heart attack when he heard the news.

      • Strummer says:

        What about the oft-concussed Connelly?

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

  23. habs001 says:

    I know it is better to lose today but at least make it respectable..i have a feeling it could be a major blow out game like 6-2..
    Have to give Gauthier credit as based on the team from last year and the financial resources he had going into this season he produced a season that if we had any of the present pro gms in the nhl or even any former gm at the helm ..they would have had real difficulties producing a worst season…

  24. ont fan says:

    P. Chiarelli has done a nice job in Boston. Ottawa lost a good one there. All with a core of Thomas, Chara, Bergeron and a veteran coach. With some good 2nd round picks and hard work they stayed in the mix and let these guys develope. We can hope.

    • ZepFan2 says:

      Don’t you mean Chiarelli AND Brian Burke?

      “You cannot petition the lord with prayer!” – James Douglas Morrison

  25. RGM says:

    Crazy thought of the day: one year ago today, Zdeno Chara broke Max Pacioretty’s neck and gave him a severe concussion. A year later, and Pacioretty is back better than ever and on the brink of scoring 30 goals. Hell of a world eh?

    GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is probably not our year!
    “Scott Gomez is an elite NHL player” – VancouverHab

    Chat with me on Twitter @TheRealRGM81

    • habs001 says:

      Has to be considerd comeback player of the year..He has developed way more than any expectations i had of him..with more experience and a little more smarts he could become a regular 35-40 goal scorer…

      • Bripro says:

        100%. I don’t see who qualifies for the Masterson trophy more than Max. At least that would be a cap feather he can boast about, given that his team resembles a plucked chicken.

      • RGM says:

        I think it’ll be a close race between Max and David Perron. Both overcame horrific blows to the head and have returned with a vengeance. Not a lot of people had a spotlight on Perron but he was having major post-concussion problems and it’s great to see him back in the game.

        But I’m biased, so I say Max.

        GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is probably not our year!
        “Scott Gomez is an elite NHL player” – VancouverHab

        Chat with me on Twitter @TheRealRGM81

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Given the NHL will hand it out, the award must go to the U.S. team, remember this league’s sole goal is to sell hockey to Americans. There is no interest in what happens to Canadian teams.

          • HFX-HabFan says:

            The fact that MaxPac is a Connecticut boy and UofM alumnus should help. His stock is rising to the point that he should be included in early conversations about the U.S.’ 2014 Olympic team.

  26. WindsorHab-10 says:

    How long before Maple Leaf fans start demanding a coaching change?

  27. HabinBurlington says:

    So off topic, where is Peyton Manning going to end up this coming year? If I knew he was healthy I would love if my Steelers did an end around on Roethlisberger and brought in Peyton.

      • ABHabsfan says:

        or KC. Though the “experts” say Seattle will make a strong play

        “man, I love winnin’; you know, it’s like better than losin’?”-
        Ebby Calvin “Nuke” Laloosh

      • arcosenate says:

        Landing there yesterday to speak to the Dolphins’ ownership made it look that way. I am torn as a 49ers fan, after watching Smith play so well all year, beat New Orleans but not be able to convert on 3rd down in 13 attempts against the Giants it’s hard. IManning is 36 and coming off 3 neck surgeries so in the end I hope the niners take a pass, pardon the pun.

        • ABHabsfan says:

          Peyton lives in Miami, I think that was why he was there

          “man, I love winnin’; you know, it’s like better than losin’?”-
          Ebby Calvin “Nuke” Laloosh

    • WindsorHab-10 says:

      Don’t count the Jets out, I know they have Sanchez but he has been very inconsistent. Something about having Manning vs Manning in New York.

    • Cal says:

      He’ll back up his brother in NY. 😀

    • Willy says:

      Gotta believe it’s gonna be Miami. Outside shot to Arizona. It’s pretty well known that he doesn’t want to play in a bad weather, open stadium city or a team that needs a major rebuild on offense. Arizona has better pieces to work with but Kolb’s 7 million $ contract makes it a bit tougher. Right now i’m picking Miami. As long as it ain’t the damn Jets(Bills and Giants fan)

    • habsfan0 says:

      How about Manning ending up in Buffalo?

      Oh,wait..I forgot..the Bills have future Hall of Famer Ryan Fitzpatrick locked into that position.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Ralph Wilson would have a stroke just looking at the contract it would take to sign Manning!

        • habsfan0 says:

          Wilson is so out of it, I don’t think he’s even cognizant of what he’s signing.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            I think the only thing he is cognizant of is how many zeroes at the end of each contract. Agree with you, very glad I am not a Bills fan, that organization is listing badly in the open waters.

          • habsfan0 says:

            Why doesn’t somebody(a group with deep pockets) make a play to relocate the Bills to Montreal when Wilson passes? The Bills in Toronto experiment has been an abject failure,I’m sure NFL in Montreal would be a resounding success.

          • Willy says:

            The Bills are not nearly as bad as everyone assumes. This team easily could have gone 10-6 last year when you look at the close losses. Fitz is not a great QB but he’s passable(better than what AZ, MIA, NYJ, BAL and even DEN trot out there). Stevie Johnson is a true #1 WR. Spiller and Jackson are a top RB duo. The D needs work but it’s not that far away with Dareus, Byrd and Williams. I love the Bills and would get season tix if they moved here but they should def stay in Buffalo.

          • habsfan0 says:

            Stevie Johnson has a history of not making the CLUTCH reception and he has maturity issues as well.

          • Willy says:

            I’ll grant you that Stevie has dropped some easy game winners/changers and he should tone down the TD celebrations but i think Gailey and Nix wouldn’t have brought him back at that much $$$ if they didn’t believe he could be the #1 and get past all that stuff. They are no GB or NE but the Bills are up and coming and play an exciting game every week(unlike NYJ and BAL).

    • Bripro says:

      Although he was denying having been contacted by any team, he was already pointing out the positives of Miami.
      You can bet, with his home there, they will be his first consideration.
      Personally, I’d like to see him as Tom Brady’s back up. 😉

    • Kooch7800 says:

      I think the Dolphins as well. I hope he goes there actually

      “Like Canadian Hip hop..check us out

  28. ABHabsfan says:

    I’m not sure what is going on behind the curtain in Habs’ ownership and management these days (or any days for that matter) They signed a couple prospects other than that there is very little to do it would seem. If a change is to be made at GM, it should really be done now. Players have no idea who they are playing for; coach is in all likelihood out and if PG is going to get fired, as he should, someone with vested interest in the team should be evaluating and planning now. This is a critical time going forward, most of the “core”of this team needs a contract.
    The rest of this season should be seen as a training camp/try-out, it will only make them better next year. Mailing it in for the rest of the year is a real waste of a good opportunity. If PG is getting the hook, get it done and let’s move forward.

    “man, I love winnin’; you know, it’s like better than losin’?”-
    Ebby Calvin “Nuke” Laloosh

  29. Mr. Biter says:

    2 quick tid bits. Since Cammy left 8 W 15 L. Since Gill left 2W 7L.
    The goat was tanking the team and we did’t realize it. BTW haven’t been on, computer crashed. Lost lots of stuff. Really sucks.

    Mr. Biter
    No Guts No Glory

  30. Mr_MacDougall says:

    The Oilers are “media darlings” getting support from all national media.

    Here is a question, would any of you trade the entire Habs roster (including AHL and prospects) for the Oilers?

    I wouldn’t.

  31. Sean Malone says:

    So AK46 playing with 2 no buddies 4pts in 3 games and plus 2.
    Still think it was a very very weak trade for a guy who can easily be a 30 goal man if properly coached…and Trotz is one of the best.

    Guess the habs should worry about getting a good coach first and some NHL dmen wouldn’t hurt either because 4 of them currently would have a real hard time making the bulldogs right now.

    ~I never said it. Honest.~

    • New says:

      Nothing wrong with A. Kostitsyn. He did what was asked. Put in the right place he can bury the puck better than 90% of NHL players. As with Ryder, Chelios, Roy, Keane, Brashear, ( and the list just goes on), he just wasn’t valued by the people making decisions. They weren’t going to put him in a position of career high stats going into a long term contract and pay big for him.

      Good guy to have around if you’re seriously building a hockey team though.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      More players are lost to other organizations by poor coaching and management than by affordability!!

    • RGM says:

      David Legwand is a former #2 overall pick and Hornqvist is a decent up-and-comer. They may not be buddies yet, but give it time to gel.

      GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is probably not our year!
      “Scott Gomez is an elite NHL player” – VancouverHab

      Chat with me on Twitter @TheRealRGM81

  32. Mr_MacDougall says:

    Upon researching Pierre Gautier, I realized that his BEST work had been accomplished with the Habs over the last couple of seasons. My question is this, how could this man be hired to a high end franchise like Mtl if he failed so miserably in Ottawa and Anahiem? His “claim to fame” is reported as “getting the most out of a limited budget for small market teams.”

    Consider Doug MacLean in Columbus (not suggesting him as a candidate for Mtl) he was President and GM of Columbus the team made and average of 10 million per season, now he is out of work, the team has doubled its payroll and is worse!

    • New says:

      Perhaps the Montreal Canadiens are solely a small portion of the business? The Canadiens are really just the advertizing for the business. They are what get people buying the product and visiting the venues. The quality of the product isn’t important until it begins to have an effect on the bottom line.

      No one ever accused the management of the Montreal Canadiens of building championship teams. They have been successful at meeting ownerships requirements though.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        That is a sad truth I am afraid. A GM with pride and desire is needed. Also, they must be given to the support of ownership to buy their way out of bad decisions similar to Sather in NYR (site Redden and Avery)

        • New says:

          Ya. I don’t think you’re going to get a GM devoted to building a farm system and championship teams. That costs big bucks and the return is very small. I am pretty sure the organization isn’t looking for that type of thing. They don’t want criticism from the on ice product, management, or press. That Gomez wasn’t “New Yorked” (for want of a better term) indicates the difference between the other large markets like NY and Philly. They consider Redden and such a necessary business expense, a write off, and get on with promoting a winning product. The Canadiens just promote that they had a winning product a few decades ago. Gilette flipped the asset as it appreciated and so will Molson when the opportunity comes along. Sorry but the Canadiens themselves are sort of like a bauble – a cocktail party or golf course trinket that you wave about to impress folks.

  33. jimmy shaker says:

    Ahhhh, 7 more months till players report for camps and physicals. Can’t wait…….2012-13 looks to be a promising one for the habs.

  34. Mondou6 says:

    Off topic question:

    Outside of the Original Six teams, which NHL team has the best uniforms?

    For me, it has to be relatively unchanged for a long time, be easy to instantly identify the team when you see it from afar on TV, and not be any of the teal/black abominations that started in the 1990s.

    Also, no cartoon logos like the Wild or Coyotes.

    That being said, I think the Oilers have pretty good unis. Blue/orage is unique, and you can spot them immediately.

    The Flames are decent too.

    I like the Sabres old style ones, but I think they mix in cartoon ones now.

    Oh, and the Blues, those are cool.

    • nickster13 says:

      Gotta be the Blues dark blue jersey, that’s sweet.
      The Sharks home jersey. Teal! and the iconic shark.
      Philadelphia orange.+ the flyer logo is classic.
      Lastly, the New Jersey Devils Logo and white jersey is solid.

      “I don’t wanna see Maurice tonight, I want the rocket!”

    • Chuck says:

      Gotta go with the Flyers’ orange retro jersey.

      Being a Hab fan is like buying real estate: only over the long-haul will you appreciate the true value of your investment.

    • Edmonton has some really nice jerseys, for sure. It took them a while to get the really nice set in the Edge-era, but this year they’ve got a great set of home and away jerseys.

      I think a team that does a good job of mixing traditional with modern is the LA Kings this season with their black and white jerseys.

      The Wild has a really nice alternate jersey (their green and tan one) that I’ve always loved.

      But, I’ve gotta say, I also like the Coyotes home/away jerseys, even though their logo is ‘cartoony’. I personally like the logo.

    • bennayd says:

      Definitely the LA Kings purple and gold jerseys.

  35. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …2 years of Our Habs having a Top-5 Draft Choice, may be a little too much emotional frenzy than an average Habs’ Fan can tolerate 🙂

    HIS’ Official Habs’ Fan Theme Song: Morrissey ‘There is a light that never goes out’

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

  36. Mr_MacDougall says:

    I do not think the Habs are a couple of years away like many have suggested. They will be right back to 6-8th in the East next year. Their defense and goal tending will be far superior than all other “bubble” teams with

    Markov Subban (whom I would pair together)
    Gorges Emelin
    Kaberle ????

    The team could use some work on the wing, but if management/coaches were patient and had a third line including Leblanc, Eller, and Moen for an extended perion, i think they could have success.

    Pleks deserves NHL wingers and not scraps. No lottery pick in 2013 folks!

    • Mondou6 says:

      I think people are hoping for 2-3 years away from contending for a Cup, as opposed to 2-3 years away from being 8th in the East again. The days of us backing into the 8th seed on the last day of the season accomplished nothing.

      I want to have the most talented roster in the NHL, or at least a roster with more than enough talent to win the Cup, and if that means I have to wait until 2014, or 2015, so be it.

      The goal is the Cup, not 8th place in the East.

      • Mr_MacDougall says:

        They need a Superstar Center to become a perennial cup contender. All teams that have been regular contenders over the past 20 years have accomplished that by having a “Five Man Core” consisting of an elite goaltender, elite top two D, elite top center, above average second line center. (site Det, early 90’s pts, Col, Dal)

        Habs have Price, Subban, Markov (when healthy) one of DD/Pleks, and are missing the Top center which is integral to becoming a perennial contender.

        I agree 100% that winning the cup should be the Habs goal.

    • Sean Malone says:

      I like the duo of

      Emelin / PK they would be the most hated d pairing in the NHL
      and most effect with complementing styles and playing on their natural sides.

      ~I never said it. Honest.~

  37. Mondou6 says:

    This story is hilarious:

    Grossmann of the Flyers wore “Grossman” on his jersey for 5 years, because “he didn’t want to complain”.

    That’s great, hahaha…

  38. Ian Cobb says:

    Management and coaching in today’s new NHL, is 10 times more important than it used to be before the rule changes and the salary cap.
    So important for the success of the club is the quality of 1st the GM and 2nd the quality of the coaching throughout the organization.
    Without the best, you are last.!!!!

  39. centre hice says:

    The Hamilton Bulldogs are going to get a nice crop of players for next season.

    Tinordi, Gallagher, Bournival, Ellis, Holland, and more. Kristo needs to be signed this summer or we loose him to free agent.

    I think Beaulieu has another year junior.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I noticed the past few weeks/months the talk has started up again about the Bulldogs moving to Laval, has anyone heard any more on this?

      • Ian Cobb says:

        Just wishful thinking on behalf of Laval I believe Gerald!

      • slamtherimtim says:

        just a matter of time ,

      • Kooch7800 says:

        The dogs owner has committed to hamilton that the dogs will stay there but their affiliations may change in the future. That would suck for guys like us Burly who are in southern ontario and do attend dogs games.

        he did also say though that there has been no talks about changing affiliations soon either.

        I hope they stay there

        “Like Canadian Hip hop..check us out

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Especially with what appears to be a better team on the horizon. I know I haven’t attended much this year, but really have had zero to desire to watch that team, given how depleted it is. The previous two-three seasons was great watching Max, PK, DD develop.

          • Kooch7800 says:

            I haven’t been there much this year either. I have been to only two games. My duaghter just turned one a couple weeks ago so when we did get a chance to go out I didn’t want to waste it on the current dogs roster.

            I agree though, the last couple years were great watching them and next year should be great again. What do you think of watching Avistin? He hasn’t impressed me all that much

          • HabinBurlington says:

            I have seen glimpses of high end talent, but that was last year. Not sure if he is just slow developing, or perhaps, the lack of talent around him isn’t helping. Of course there is also the option that he isn’t as good as we hoped. But I am just hopeful that he is on a slower learning curve, new country, language etc….

            Hasn’t helped that our coaches in Hamilton change every year also.

    • jon514 says:

      I think Beaulieu is eligible to play in the AHL (he will be 20), it will be his choice. No reason for him to stay in junior… If Ellis is Hamilton ready as the number 7 d-man in the QMJHL then Beaulieu is ready as the #5…

      “Let’s be clear on the facts…”

  40. LafleurGuy says:

    Brendan Gallagher 5th rounder, Michael Bournival 3rd rounder, Patrick Holland 7th rounder.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

    • TomNickle says:

      I love Brendan Gallagher but I’ve seen nothing from Michel Bournival that would lead me to believe he’ll be an NHL player. I’m hoping he makes great strides heading into the future but in my opinion it doesn’t look promising.

      As for Patrick Holland. It’s hard to say. I wouldn’t count on it.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        I obviously haven’t had much chance to watch Bournival aside from the World Jr.’s Tom, and I have to agree with your assessment. Unless there is major stride taken forward, I don’t see alot there except an AHL future, perhaps another fringe callup. I don’t say this like I am a scout, but typically by now a player begins to stand out.

        Gallagher stands out, his challenge will be that our roster currently cannot afford another diminuitive yet talented player. Marchand fits perfectly in Boston as he is really their only smaller forward and is provided ample room to perform.

      • awesomerino says:

        I think once we have a lottery pick like Grigorenko, Forsberg, or (dare I dream) Yakupov in the system, Habs fans will start being more realistic in their assessment of the other prospects in our system.

        • Mr_MacDougall says:

          By realistic do you mean Tinordi, Beaulieu, Ellis, and Gallagher will likely make the NHL, but their impact is anyone’s best guess. All other prospects are marginal? that is my take.

          • Ian Cobb says:

            They might make the show after two or three years in Hamilton,

          • Mr_MacDougall says:

            Yeah, I wasnt speaking about next year, should have been more clear. I wanted to say what you said hahahhaha

        • RGM says:

          If by “in the system” you mean “on the opening day roster” I think you’ll be correct. Every #1 pick since the lockout, except for 2006 #1 Erik Johnson, has made the NHL immediately. But you are correct in that seeing someone of that calibre have an immediate impact will put things in perspective.
          GO HABS GO! 2011-12 is probably not our year!
          “Scott Gomez is an elite NHL player” – VancouverHab

          Chat with me on Twitter @TheRealRGM81

  41. Ian Cobb says:

    Your right Stu! Rebuilding is an art! They are doing it right developing their youth slowly through the draft. We are about three years behind them right now.

    Come to think of it, if Edmonton beats us tonight, they will move one spot ahead of us in the standings, putting us into 29th. A great position for the draft. But a very very long way back to respectability in the league.
    If we also develop our youth properly, we will be there in about five years! Hope we can find enough bodies to ice a team the next couple of years.

    We will be a bottom feeding team for the next 3 years, or maybe more, depending on management and coaching.

    • TomNickle says:

      Everyone is three years behind Edmonton Ian. They have been so bad for so long under the direction of the incompetent Kevin Lowe and the not so incompetent Steve Tambellini that they’ve walked backwards into young star after young star.

      Their slow development with these young stars is a testament to how truly ignorant Kevin Lowe is as a hockey operations manager.

      • Ian Cobb says:

        TOM, I cannot comment about their competence or lack of. But a teams position in the standings year after year is a total reflection of the quality of management running the franchise. Nothing else!

        • TomNickle says:

          Glad we’re in agreement.


          PS: What the heck is going on in Belleville? I flipped on the Bulls/Petes game last night and saw the arena was virtually empty. What gives?

          • Ian Cobb says:

            I know Tom, I have been working with them in trying to fill the seats as it used to be, but all games are on TV now and season ticket holders just pick the games they want to attend now.
            It is the same all over the league now, look at Mississauga now, empty! The owners share the bucks from TV advertising, but it will kill the CHL eventually!

        • HabinBurlington says:

          Good point Ian, more important than our draft position this year, is the need for change thoughout our Mgmt and Coaching. As has been listed ad nauseum here, too many talented players have walked away for not enough return. This isn’t to say I felt all or some should have stayed, but the returns did not equal the departured.

          There have been some exceptions, but seems to me the culture of our development needs refining, especially with the crop of youngsters we now have on the way up.

          I have no idea what kind of player Kristo will turn into, but I have this strange feeling that he may not want to be a part of this organization going forward.

          • Ian Cobb says:

            That is exactly the problem Gerald, no sense to have the best scouting department in the league, and not have to management team to manage the assets properly.

            J. Martin was terrible with the kids, he broke a lot of their spirit trying to make them into a different player than they were.

    • geo_habsgo says:

      We won’t be bottom feeding next season and beyond, Ian. This season might turn out to be a blessing in disguise because of the top 5 pick we’re about to get but the reality is that this team with a few tweaks is right back to where we were the last two years. An average team that finishes middle of the pack that can occasionally show flashes of greatness but isn’t able to win when it counts. It’s not the worst place to be but its kind of stagnant and I don’t see that position changing much.

      • Ian Cobb says:

        We have a very long way back from the bottom my friend. This is a sad time for our franchise. You do not just turn it around like you do a bike. This will take a very long time.

        • Marcusman says:

          Completely disagree….you are forgetting the injury situation this year.

          #79, 21,13,26,32,52,81,53,45….all regular contributors that have had extended stays on the DL.

          A new coach next year, no power struggle in the locker room, no Markov watch..the boys will be back in town come October 2012.

    • RetroMikey says:

      We are no better than Edmonton, if not worse in my opinion.
      Turn back the clock back to 2004 when BG took over and said we had excellent junior prospects and on the farm like Locke, Milroy, Lambert, Aubin, Stewart, Chipchura, etc.. to name a few according to his head of scouting Trevor Timmins.
      Well, where are they know?
      I don’t buy anything how Gallagher, Tinordi, Kristo, etc… are gonna be 2 years away or so from making the big club, I just don’t buy it. They are just “cross your finger” prospects.
      We are a mediocre team and the farm team is no better in Hamilton, our team is a work in progress.
      Management (PG and BG) as well as scouting (Timmins) have to get fired ASAP once the season is over.
      Yes, Ian misery for at least 3 or 4 seasons if we do not make necessary changes effective immediately after the season via trades as well.
      Tank I say! Tank!

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

  42. HardHabits says:

    Headline should be “Tanking Oilers still need time”

  43. centre hice says:

    I don’t understand why people talk about “tanking”.

    The habs are in last place despite the efforts of the players (well most players) and the coach.

    The habs are a really bad team, no tanking required. As if they need to put an extra effort into being bad.

    • TomNickle says:

      Unfortunately there are big differences between hard working, good and capable.

      This team has more talent than a lot of teams in the league who are playing better hockey. The losses fall jointly on the coaching staffs and management this season.

      For the life of me I don’t know how anyone in the organization expected to hold leads with Kaberle, Campoli and Weber, or at minimum two of them each game being trusted.

      • centre hice says:

        List the teams the canadiens have more talent than.

        • TomNickle says:

          Carolina, Islanders, Leafs, Lightning, Devils, Senators and Panthers in the East. I’m sure you’ll find a way to say that these teams have more talent and perhaps a few of them if not all have more star power. But top to bottom, none of those teams has more talent than the Habs.

          Columbus, Minnesota, Anaheim, Calgary, Phoenix, Nashville and Dallas in the West.

          This is why coaches like Dave Tippet and Barry Trotz are considered for the Jack Adams annually. They easily get the most out of their rosters.

          The coaching the Habs have had this season has found a way to get the least out of everyone not named Desharnais, Pacioretty and Cole.

          • centre hice says:

            I think you only watch habs games

          • TomNickle says:

            Yep that’s the way to counter-point an argument. Say I watch too many Habs games.

            Could you, without going to a website to confirm name a more than one player in the bottom six forward group or bottom two or three defensemen for the Panthers, Lightning, Devils, Panthers, Blue Jackets, Wild, Ducks or Coyotes?

            Have YOU seen anyone other than the Habs? The teams that I’ve mentioned have a small amount of top end talent but have a severe lack of depth for the most part.

          • Storm Man says:

            Tom really? Nashville or Anaheim make us look very silly btw. Where is all this talent you are talking about?

          • centre hice says:

            The Canadiens have the worst depth in the league.

            The argument is talent.

            Are you trying to argue that the Habs have more talent on their 4th line than the devils do? Generally a team’s depth players are not known for talent.

            ALL the teams you listed have more talent than the Habs.

            You’re suffering from “Habs delusion”.

          • TomNickle says:

            I’m not saying the Habs have an overflow of talent or skill Tim. I’m saying that the Habs have as much depth on the big club, if not more, than the teams that I mentioned.

            Point being that the player personnel, aside from a glaring weakness in team toughness on defense is not to blame for the current placement in the standings. This team has problems with coaching selections and have a philosophy problem on defense. They seem to believe that every defenseman you have must be an elite puck distributor(Gorges notwithstanding).

          • Storm Man says:

            Tom after seen my 8th game of the Habs live this year…. They stink don’t know how else to say how I feel about them at this point. I feel Molson is the wrong owner for a hockey team at this point hope he proves me wrong but to have Gainey still calling some shots is very wrong and the Goat has to go as well. I see some dark years ahead unless molson cleans house.

  44. Marc10 says:

    Dany Dubé has got to be one of the finest analysts around. If your French is good, you’ll enjoy his analysis of the team.

    A great bit near near the end is his opinion of Kabs. He reckons the guy should lose 10lbs. Not that he’s unfit, but as an ageing player he’d be well served by dropping a few pounds, strengthening his legs and keeping up his speed. Something that’s served Chris Chelios and Teeemu Selanne in the later years of their respective careers.

    Oh and Dubé also says PG first tried to get Glencross for Cams but was rebuffed… so settle for Bourque.

    Terrific stuff… if only what he was analysing wasn’t so bleak. Oh well, not too many more games to go before golf… and the draft!

    • boing007 says:

      Sounds like PG was rolling the dice that Bourque would be a good acquisition. Reminds me of the Dusty Springfield song, “Wishin & Hopin”…

      Richard R

  45. punkster says:

    Can anybody tell me what time the tankers and realists are scheduled to hijack the conversations here today? I have some appointments and a few errands to run and I want to be sure I’m away when they show up.

    ***Subbang Baby!!!***

    • HabinBurlington says:

      They did a serious offensive yesterday, I think all the Panzers are getting maintenance done this morning and topping up on fuel. This western road swing is a key offensive for them, I am not sure even the fabled Repulican Guard of Iraq can stop them now Punkster!

    • LafleurGuy says:

      Yah, baby! Snoozefest city with that subject. Pretty good scoutin eh? Karlsson 16th overall, Eberle 22nd overall.

      “May you live in interesting times.”

    • Habfan10912 says:

      I really don’t mind most of their postings, Punkster. What grinds my gears is the seemingly joy they take on this teams struggles. I am confused how someone can label themselves a fan yet take such joy in its misery.
      That said, I am finding some comfort in having a top pick in the draft and the potential demise of the clubs management team.

      • HardHabits says:

        I take no joy in the Habs being a laughing stock run by a bunch of dinosaurs. It’s a just reward for the years of the team being content with putting out a mediocre product and claiming it to be contender worthy. It is a nice slap in the face of the institutional arrogance that plagues the Habs brain trust.

        The problem with the Habs is they are more concerned with PR than hockey. They like to evoke the past as if all it takes is to put a team of AHLers and over-paid veterans (management favourites) on the ice and the glorious days of lore will miraculously transform plugs into superstars.

        I will be happy when I see the team make the right team building moves that IMO wont happen until Gainey is long gone from the organization. Hopefully the Habs can redefine themselves under Molson. I am not holding my breath though. My fear is that not only will things not get better but they will get much worse under the current regime.

        Look at Gauthier’s record as a GM. The only good news for Habs fans is that as long as Goats is on board they will see many high draft picks coming into the fold. Unless of course they piss them away on more veterans in the hopes of grabbing that coveted 8th and final play-off spot.

        • Habfan10912 says:

          Fair enough HH but I gotta tell you there are days when you reflect something different then you described above. I will print your post and read it whenever I doubt your fandom. Cheers.

          • Cal says:

            HH would like to think he is right in all things hockey. I’m surprised, no, shocked, that he isn’t in a hockey organization. 😉

          • HardHabits says:

            @Cal: I take myself less seriously than most here think. For the most part I am a Jester drawing guffaws from the crowd but ever so often raising the ire of the King.

            I know less about hockey than many a poster here. What I do know however is what I see and I am not afraid to confront reality. Many here are living in an fantasy land of ideals and well wishes. I am much more pragmatic than that.

            That being said as has been noted, given my discourse over the past 3 seasons, I am sitting pretty.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            @HH, you almost made it through an entire post with seperating your shoulder as you patted yourself on the back. Your getting close now, there is hope! 🙂

  46. LafleurGuy says:

    Wouldn’t swap our roster with the Oilers’, despite their youth and tons of potential. Would take Seguin over Hall, although the former is surrounded with grit and skill. Eberle is the Bomb. He was a 1st rounder in 2008, 22nd overall, and thus chosen after McDonaugh and Pacioretty.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

    • LafleurGuy says:

      Correction, Habs gave up our 2008 1st rounder for Tanguay. Interestingly, Leafs chose Schenn 5th overall in 2008, ahead of Eberle, Erik Karlsson, Cody Hodgson, Tyler Myers. Schenn is from Saskatoon, which of course, is not in Ontario, but that buffoon Don Cerise would have chosen Schenn over Karlsson strictly based on nationality!

      “May you live in interesting times.”

  47. mjames says:

    I see Leblanc was sent down again. I fail to understand why they won’t play him at the Habs level. There is no reason not to give Leblanc a full sift. He is not hurting the team unlike others on the team. By the same token I fail to see why Geoffrion is still here. It is clear this kid is overmatched, He is slow, weak along the boards with little offensive or defensive skill. He is only here because of his name . I am sure PG got him because of his name .

    I have nothing against the Geoffrion kid , the fault lies with PG for getting him. If he did his scouting he would see the kid was not NHL caliber. This is just another example of PG’s incompetence and his inability to judge talent.


  48. Haligonian-Hab says:

    Last night’s results were perfect. The Leafs lost in a Pens’ comeback, and Buffalo won a 3pt game (screwing the Leafs even more, AND giving us a 5 pt cushion in last place. It’s going to be nice not having to sit through 15 rounds (2 hours) of draft coverage before seeing what we take, AND hopefully we choose the right guy. This terrible season is almost over, and the end can’t come soon enough. The weather will soon change for the better.

    This team is only a few players (and some good playing) away from being back in the thick of things, although we are always “in the thick of things”, and I’d rather us be at the top. It’ll be interesting to see what happens in the next few months to make the team better. Until then, it’s TankTime.

  49. rhino514 says:

    With a better than average crop of prospects hard to understand why we dished out longish term contracts to Kaberle and Bourque. I don´t think these guys add any character to the dressing room some of which we lost with Gill and Cammalleri.
    Kaberle didn´t go at the trade deadline which makes me fear it is going to be difficult to unload him.

  50. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …if I was Geoff Molson, if I was Pierre Gauthier, if I was Randy Cunneyworth (all of Whom I obviously ain’t) …Scott Carlos Gomez would NOT be taking up ice experience from Our younger Players

    …there is zero point to play Gomez (or Kaberle …or Campoli for that matter 🙁 ) …He will not be in Our line-up next season …this is the time to bench all those that are not in Our future plans, and give those TOI minutes and opportunity to Our younger Players, to allow them opportunity to show what They are capable of (or not capable of), as well provide Them as much valued NHL experience as possible before training camp this coming October

    HIS’ Official Habs’ Fan Theme Song: Morrissey ‘There is a light that never goes out’

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

    • slamtherimtim says:


    • Habfan10912 says:

      Could not agree with you more. I think you named the reason why this lump was allowed back into the locker-room. Molson (money), PG (was personally involved) and RC(lame duck). I am losing faith that Molson is going to do the right thing and clean house after the season.

  51. Un Canadien errant says:

    I attended the Pacific Coliseum in Vancouver on Wednesday March 7 to watch the Giants play the Tri-City Americans. My focus was on two players who belong to the Montréal Canadiens, Brendan Gallagher of the Giants, and Patrick Holland of the Americans, who was acquired from the Calgary Flames’ organization in the Mike Cammalleri trade.

    The game started on a good note for me and my friend in that while we were lined up at the ticket window, we were approached by a guy who said he had extra tickets and he gave us two for free. After many thank yous, we made our way inside and found that we were five rows up from the ice, behind the goal line in the corner of the zone the Americans would defend twice. Amazing seats, especially at that price, and we were sure to see a lot of Mr. Gallagher on the attack. We had the added bonus of two lovely puck bunnies to our immediate left. Just before puck drop, our ticket genie showed up with his posse, we exchanged hellos, and tried to ply him with beer to give thanks, but he would have none of it.

    The game itself was highly entertaining, though low-scoring, and the Americans won 2-1 in overtime, scoring the winning goal during a 4-on-3 man advantage. The action was non-stop, end-to-end, and being so close to the ice added to the spectacle, we could see the kids working hard, and their personality would sometimes shine through. Even had I paid the $20 price for a ticket in this zone, I would have been very satisfied with the value I received, in stark contrast to the Canucks-Blackhawks game I attended last month, for which I paid $125 for a terrible seat, and during which there were long stretches when nothing happened. Were I to relocate to Vancouver or elswhere, I would certainly consider purchasing Major Junior hockey season tickets, but I’m not sure if I would do so for Canucks or even Canadiens tickets. The price-value equation is stretched to the limit for NHL hockey I believe.

    In any case, the two players being scouted impressed this amateur bird-dog. Brendan Gallagher was as advertised, a dervish on the ice, always moving and working hard, dangerous in the offensive zone and effective when killing penalties. He was constantly chatting with his teammates, had a few scoring chances, and took a penalty for digging at the goalie and trying to poke the puck loose a half-second after the whistle had sounded. He had a good shot on goal on a two-on-two break while killing a penalty. Interestingly the defender he tried to beat and ended up using as a screen for his shot on goal was Patrick Holland.

    Mr. Holland is not a flashy player who commands the crowd’s attention. At the start of the game, I could immediately pick out Brendan Gallagher and point him out, but it took about 5 minutes before I saw Patrick Holland. I had commented that he might be injured and not playing, he was so discreet. When I did spot him and figured out he was wearing #41, I was impressed with what I saw.

    I expected him to be a slick playmaking passer, kind of like David Desharnais or Adam Oates, based on the scouting reports and his point tally so far this season (24 G, 79 A), but he seemed very comfortable carrying the puck and shooting at the net. In fact, he manned the point on the first wave of the powerplay, and was effective in that role and when retreating to defend; he looked comfortable skating backwards. Moreso than his center Brendan Shinnimin, he seemed to be the puck carrier for his trio. Mr. Shinnimin did well also, he was a more spectacular player, skating quickly and darting this way and that to shoot pucks at the net. In one instance, he did an almost complete circle around the offensive zone, starting in the slot and wheeling around the net, back to the slot for a good scoring chance.

    Mr. Holland was also impressive in that he battled effectively along the boards, not so much by being very physical, but smart against bigger opponents. He would time his efforts and show good mobility and quickness to win the puck and keep the play in the offensive zone. On one occasion, there was some pushing and slashing nonsense after the whistle, and he was confronted with 6’4″ David Musil, who gave him a combo facewash-headlock. Patrick didn’t back down and kept going into the corners against him (lots of linematching was going on) and more often than not coming out with the puck.

    The impressive part of his evening is that he assisted on both goals, which I didn’t realize as I left the arena. He quietly played a good game, and was a big reason his team won, along with a good performance by the Americans goalie Ty Rimmer who kept them in the game early on.

    So a good night for the Canadiens’ prospects, it’s good to see the boys playing well and working hard, and another small measure of optimism in this gloomy period.

    How about it NHL? No fighting, just hockey?

    • Habitant in Surrey says:

      …have long been anticipating Your review of Gallagher and Holland Normand …wish I had the opportunity to be there, especially next to the puck bunnies 🙂

      …looking forward to ‘new blood’ and ‘new hope’ …especially if ‘elite new blood’

      …We have had enough ‘hamburger’ over the past couple decades …We need the next decades to be a regular feast of The Keg STEAKS,

      …and, serve Mine RARE ! 🙂

      PostScript: …My personal opinion on Gallagher is He will be a pepper-pot Player for Us, but I do not expect Him to put up the numbers of, let’s say, a Martin St. Louis …ideally, He will be a more likeable version of Brad Marchand, which will not be too shabby 🙂

      HIS’ Official Habs’ Fan Theme Song: Morrissey ‘There is a light that never goes out’

      Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

    • jols101 says:

      Very nice report on these 2 young prospects. Although this season has been miserable, i find myself excited about many of our prospects, especially Gallager, Beaulieu, and Tinordi.
      I also find myslef intrigued about the upcomming draft in June and am trying to get as much info on those top prospects as well.
      Lastly, even though there is no joy in watching the CH this season i am getting alot of satisfaction from watching the Leafs unprecedented tumble in the standings.
      So as terrible as this season has been with our prospects, the upcomming draft and the Leafs falling apart there is alot to be excited about. Cheers!!!

    • HabinBurlington says:

      As Hab in Surrey commented, I too have long been awaiting the report from our “Timmins” in Vancouver report. Sounds like you had a wonderful evening.

      I am wondering the more I read on Mr. Holland if he isn’t made alot in the mold of Leblanc. A very smart player with excellent hockey sense but no one skill that stands out.

      I don’t think any of us should expect him to be a 1st or 2nd line contributor, but if he can become another staple 3rd line forward who plays excellent defense and has the skillset to chip a few in that would be nice. Unfortunately, my fear is that we seem to have alot of these types of forwards in the making, and wish a couple more had the size and grit that our 3rd line has lacked, someone in the Mike McPhee mold would be incredible.

      Perhaps, we can get lucky and Quailer our college prospect can be that type of big body on the 3rd line for us.

      Thanks again for the update! And say hi to the puck bunnies for us next time you see them 😉

    • CanadienBoy says:

      Holland just sign a 3 year deal with the Habs

    • Marc10 says:

      Thanks for that. In a bleak season, it’s good to read something positive. Always a pleasure – cheers!

  52. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …from CBC’s comments, and despaired Weeds’ fans:

    “I used to be a major Leafs fan. I no longer can bear to follow their pointless, anemic brand of hockey. It’s like being in a dysfunctional relationship. But for some reason, we keep justifying its existence, and we keep showing up, hoping things will change.

    Potential this, potential that, ‘build’ for a future that never arrives. Not only should we buoycott such a poor hockey, but we should also spare our kids exposure to a massive, corporate lie that is the Maple Leafs organization. The only winnings are the monies pocketed by the tycoons running this circus, and they are laughing their heads off while manipulating every loyal heartstring.

    What other product or service have you heard of that comes up with such an epic fail of a product, yet manages to make outrageous profit? It’s ultimately not their fault so many are stupid enough to keep buying. The starving Leafs fans provide the perfect blood meal.

    Winning the Cup isn’t even remotely a concept anymore, but missing the playoffs year after year? What a rotten ripoff.

    Bring on another Ontario NHL franchise, the Leafs are a hollowed out disaster and an embarrassment to behold.”

    …the above was typical of comments from varied Weeds’ fans tonight

    …question: how far are many Habs’ Fans from exactly the same sentiment about Our own Habs ??? …how many seasons to go, if no improvement in Our Management culture, will complete hopelessness set-in ?

    HIS’ Official Habs’ Fan Theme Song: Morrissey ‘There is a light that never goes out’

    …the Montreal Canadiens organization and Our Fans, as a whole need to feel this current cold frigid splash of reality, …this process will, hopefully, give Us a long needed sense of humility, not humiliation …and help to revive and renew Our tattered culture of high hockey ideals, and ultimate success in the near future
    …ride the wave, is all We can do as Fans: …Ownership must make the right choices, persevere, and act not talk

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

  53. Habitant in Surrey says:

    @ Stu H.
    …mucho thanks Stu for taking My suggestion and adding some music as You so entertainingly do in Red Light
    …it ain’t ‘Otis’, but
    …when a young kid I use to race home to watch the daily cowboy ‘cliff-hangers’ on Plattsburgh’s channel 5 (NBC) and Burlington, Vt.’s channel 3 (CBS) …Johnny MacBrown and Sunset Carson were My Heroes back in the day (with some admiration for Roy Rogers, NellyBelle and Gene Autry as well ) 🙂 …use to to trot like a horse to school daily through the forests between Ridgewood and St. Joseph’s Oratory to my little red brick elementary school, looking for Iroqouis and Mohawk arrowheads shootin’ at the blackhats and injuns tryin’ to ‘rustle Me’ 🙂 …chboom, chboom, chboom at all the bad-guys behind every tree until I got safely to Ms. Harris’ classroom and back home 🙂 …haven’t been too into country music or westerns over the subsequent decades, but I listened to Your Bob Wills piece BEFORE readin’ Your take on the Oilers 🙂 …it got Me to dance a 2-step while listenin’ and I wound up with a ‘dosey-do’ as well 🙂

    …just to let You know, Your Willis addition tonight provided a smile from at least ONE of Your readers Stu 🙂

    HIS’ Official Habs’ Fan Theme Song: Morrissey ‘There is a light that never goes out’

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

    • Habitant in Surrey says:

      …I will FedEx a personally-signed Mikhail Grabovski official Hab Hockey Puck to anyOne that correctly answers who/what the Hell ‘Nellybelle’ (edited) is or was 🙂

      HIS’ Official Habs’ Fan Theme Song: Morrissey ‘There is a light that never goes out’

      Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

    • Stu Hackel says:

      HiS – Glad you liked it.

      I’ve been putting music on my blog posts since I started blogging for the New York Times four years ago. At the Times I used a lot more songs per post than I did at Adding music is something that just has to make sense. You can’t force a song. When I wrote the words “western swing,” that triggered Bob Wills (and maybe something will come up to trigger Otis Redding; you never know). At NYT, I might have put four or five songs in a post, sometimes in mid-paragraph, but I’ve curtailed that at You just got to feel it, you know? Thanks.

  54. lakechamplain says:

    If there aren’t playoff implications, how about looking forward to the June draft; are there any lottery ‘implications’ here? In other words, if the Habs finish below Edmonton, does that improve our chances to get a higher lottery pick? That said, could someone briefly explain how the lottery works. When is that held relative to the draft itself? And also I’m sure there are some draftniks out there that could offer some flickers of hope as this depressing season winds down with some insights on the top ten possibilities available. If the Patrick Holland signing offers some hope(5th round choice I think when he was drafted) then our first top-tenner(or fiver?) since Carey Price could be like a ray of Spring sunshine.
    It would be so nice to see some Montreal forwards who can create some space in the offensive zone; how many times do we have a ‘rush’ where it’s ‘one and done’: one shot from the perimiter and then back the other way. Please, we need some hope.

  55. sreuel says:

    This blog is as long as Eklund on and on

  56. please…can anyone inform me of where the canadiens will practice, hotel or party during their upcoming stay in vancouver?

  57. HabsFan82 says:

    Don’t care what they do in junior. Don’t care what they do in the AHL. it’s what they do when they come to the Habs. Thus far only two has proven they are NHL players. Pacioretty and Desharnais. the playes that has come up lately from the Bulldogs has proven nothing. being a star in junior or the AHL doesn’t mean you’re gonna be a star in the NHL we’ve had proof in the last few months. maybe down the road but they haven’t proven it so far.

    • Habs Requiem says:

      Yes the players to have an onus to produce when they get the call up and then put into the game. However, the coaching staff has the responsibility to put them in positions to succeed. Sitting on the bench for 58 mins. and 43. sec. every night will not help you produce points on the 4th line. Our call ups should be filling in for the players they are replacing. So if our 2nd line RW goes out due to injury. WE should be bringing someone up that has offensive talent not some grinder. We should be putting him on the 2nd line RW position and leave him there until the original RW is able to return. Instead we do the following: we healthy scratch them, bench them, we put scoring type players into checking roles with no offensive opportunities and very limited TOI. They inevitably are sent back down and fans & management write them off as a loser because they didn’t produce anything. We eventually get rid of them only to see them re-surface on another team and have success. Reason: we have formula coaches who a) mistrust young players b) players have roles and individual skills and abilities are secondary c) adore veterans….especially those that have no offense in their game.
      And you wonder why we average just over 2 goals a game. If it wasn’t for Price’s play this year we’d be all by ourselves with the #1 pick firmly secured in our hands. You know its true. 🙂

      “I reject your reality and substitute my own”.

      – Adam Savage

      • Cal says:

        The onus on the call up is to stand out by being effective and accepting any role they are given. If a 2nd line RW goes down, don’t you think someone already on the roster can step up, as a reward for the hard work? Or should a player with no NHL experience trump that with the “I’m entitled” card?
        Every shift for a rookie call up is a “show me” opportunity for the coaches.
        It’s not like the Habs minor leaguers are burning up the AHL with points production, right?

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