Ryder seems likely for 3rd line vs. Buffalo

Pat Hickey reports from this morning’s Canadiens practice that Michael Ryder skated on the third line, with Tom Kostopoulos elevated to the first, working out with Saku Koivu and Christopher Higgins.

The likely lines to face the Buffalo Sabres on Friday:

First line: Higgins, Koivu, Kostopoulos
Second line: Plekanek, Kovalev, Kostitsyn
Third line: Begin, Smolinski, Ryder
Fourth line: Latendresse, Chipchura, Dandenault

Defence pairings seem likely to remain the same. Cristobal Huet is expected to get the start in goal, with Carey Price getting the call at home Saturday vs. Boston.



  1. nightmare_49 says:

    Post by JF – The reasoning why Begin and Dandy have moved lines is cuz of Lats And Ryders lack of defensive prowess, balanced lines dude. I’m glad to see Garth Murray will get a shot at staying in the show with the Panthers and i thank him for his hard work and it’s to bad his work ethic didn’t rub off on Lats.

  2. Chorske says:

    Your comment says more about your prejudice against Newfoundlanders than anything else. Ryder “doesn’t like to work in the winter”? Perhaps he’s alcoholic as well. Way to reinforce the harmful regional stereotypes, bud.

    The fact is, Ryder was upset by the vandalism, upset enough for it to get coverage in the press, and it’s ignorant to assume that pro athletes don’t get bothered by shit going on at home. I think his bigger problem is that the Habs organization has shown him precious little love, despite the fact that he was our biggest scorer for two years. Y’all keep bitching about needing more scoring, and then crapping on the head of the guy who got the job done for us.

  3. Habsfan39 says:

    I will be at this game in Buffalo

    Im kind of dissapointed not to see Ryder staying on the top line. Id much rather see him than Kostopolous up there, in reality its just going to be the same thing going on. I really dont think Kosto is going to do anything that Ryder hadnt been doing. Lets remind ourselves here that Ryder has been playing decent defence which is outstanding by his standards. I dont really get this move.

    I wouldnt be surprised if Kosto is taken off the top line and Ryder put back on, or put somebody up like Chipchura by the end of the game because i really dont think Kosto is the man for the job.

    The 2nd line should continue to get it done, I can only imagine the damage we’ll do when we get a stable top line to compliment our second line lol. And round it out with great defence and secondary scoring abilities from the 3rd and 4th. We’ll be tough to handle.


  4. cautiousoptimist says:

    Rockin_Morroccan: You make a good point. I think Latendresse would have been on the third line, except that with Ryder on the other wing, the line would have had 100% of its defensive skill up the middle, in Smolinski.

    Lats potted 16 in his rookie season – we know he can play. He was actually pretty darn good with Koivu and Ryder when Higgins got hurt last year. It’s a vicious circle: you need ice time to perform well, but you need to perform well to get ice time. He only started to shine on the top line last year, when the cycle was broken and he got some ice time he hadn’t yet earned, but he certainly earned it retroactively. Maybe he deserves a kick at the can again – he can hit and crash the net as much as Kosto can if Carbo tells him to.

    I don’t know why we’re all hot and bothered about players needs “messages” sent to them. You don’t think Ryder knows that he’s performing below expectations on a good line, and the pressure of a one-year contract? Sending him to the third line isn’t going to produce an epiphany here – the man knows what he has to do. Hopefully though, he’ll click better with a couple of guys he can skate with more easily than the high-flying Higgins and Koivu. Carbo’s move is not about demotions – it’s about putting together three lines that can score.

    And TradeRyder: I don’t mean any disrespect here, but the constant, relentless dumping on a guy who scored 60 times over the last two years, just because of a slow start this fall, doesn’t make a ton of sense to me. Even your screenname dumps on the guy, and your whole identity here is tied to the fact that you don’t like him. You’re entitled to your opinion, but you’ve already articulated it as eloquently as you’re going to – let’s move on. If you think a player is only as good as his last 15 games, well, I can’t say I agree. And sending him to Hamilton? Would the goal there be to destroy his confidence, his trade value, or his opportunity to contribute to the team? Because you get a three-for-one on that one.

    The fact is, there aren’t any excuses for him, least of all a bit of vandalism by some silly kids in Newfoundland, and nobody is holding his hand. But there are some certainties in life: the tides will rise and fall, the taxman will rob you blind, the Leafs are a bunch of no-good so-and-sos, and good players will get into slumps, some longer than others. It’s normal, it’ll pass, and when it does, we’ll all be glad our trusty GM isn’t a kneejerk, short-sighted Ferguson-type, with a twitchy finger on the trade trigger.

  5. TradeRyder says:

    I agree with Corio. Kosto looks like he may have more in his hand. And he definitely has the heart and grit that we’ve needed more of for YEARS. So maybe a front-and-center presence for him sends the right signal down the line.

    Sorry Ted…. let’s not go into my coaching background… but my point is Ryder needs less hand-holding and more kicks in the pants. By being too patient with him we’ve probably spooked any trade partners. If he was benched or sent down it would make sense he has only 2 goals. And Ryder, the player, would remember what hard work it took to get back up. I don’t think he’s that fragile, I think we’ve been babying him. Certainly Carbo’s a good coach – but you can’t say he’s solved Ryder can you?

    Trade Ryder! Hope makes a good breakfast, but a bad supper!

  6. fuhgawz says:

    it is about time Ryder gets dropped off the first line — but Kosoto? ….. who thinks this is the last straw for Ryder? it is now or never Mike ….. get it going or be going

  7. Corio says:

    I don’t think it’s a bad idea trying out Kostopulos on the first line. He has shown some real promise lately and I don’t think it could be worse then Ryder at the moment. It was only a few games back that Kostopulos made that beautiful play when he broke into the opposing zone and had a give and go with I think it was Markov and one timed it into the side of the net, I’m sure most of you remember that play it was sweet. He has really improved in confidence and I think if anything it will boost that line up a notch and they need someone productive at the moment!

  8. Habs_008 says:

    I think Carbo knows what he is doing, Ryder will start to score anyday now! He was invisable at the ACC the other night, so was Lattes, until he tripped over the blue line. Habs have a busy week coming up, we need this guys to step up and show there worth.

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