Therrien shakes up Habs’ lines again at practice

With three games in four nights, Friday looked like it might be an off-day for the Canadiens.

But after back-to-back losses to the Los Angeles Kings and Philadelphia Flyers, coach Michel Therrien held a practice Friday afternoon at Islanders Iceworks in Syosset, N.Y., as the club prepares to face the Islanders Saturday night (7 p.m., CBC, RDS, TSN Radio 690).

The Canadiens, who lost 2-1 to the Flyers in Philadelphia Thursday night, will wrap up the busy weekend with a 6 p.m. game Sunday at the Bell Centre against the Florida Panthers.

Therrien mixed up his lines again at Friday’s practice and they looked like this:

Gionta – Plekanec – Galchenyuk
Pacioretty – Desharnais – Briere
Gallagher – Eller – Bournival
Parros – Prust – Moen
White

Subban – Markov
Murray – Diaz
Emelin – Gorges
Bouillon

Therrien announced after practice that Carey Price will start in goal Saturday against the Islanders and that no decision has been made yet on who will be in goal against the Panthers Sunday. It looks like Ryan White and Francis Bouillon will be healthy scratches against the Islanders.

Alexei Emelin, who received a major penalty and a game misconduct for elbowing the Flyers’ Steve Downie at 16:45 of the second period Thursday, will not have an NHL hearing or be suspended for for his actions.

(Photo by Matt Slocum/Associated Press)

Canadiens vs. Islanders preview, NHL.com

Canadiens need to find their identity, by Pat Hickey

Habs fail to earn day off, by Pat Hickey

Bergevin will have more money to spend next season, by Pat Hickey

Focus forward for Habs, Canadiens.com

Post-practice interviews (video), Canadiens.com

Habs lose second straight, by Pat Hickey

Flyers given too much time, space, by Pat Hickey

Philly a tough town for Habs, Canadiens.com

Habs vs. Flyers photo gallery, montrealgazette.com/sports

Happy 60th birthday to Bob Gainey, Stu on Sports blog

 

516 Comments

  1. HabFab says:

    Nick Kypreos – Considered non hockey play by #NHL I now have over/under for number of gms #Bruins Thornton will be susp’ set at 15. Debate among yourselves

  2. rhino514 says:

    I hate to say it, but the weak cog in the top nine is looking more and more like Gionta, offensively anyway.
    Because he´s the captain, of course, he won´t be taken out of the top nine as long as he continues to be responsible defensively. But his decline is becoming apparent and is more precipitous than we could have hoped for.
    This team is kind of strange, offensively; it´s actually a very deep offensive team; they actually have 10 guys who are capable of fulfilling top nine spots more or less adequately…or 11, if you think Prust is a great fill-in. But there is only one REALLY good offensive goal-scoring threat, Pacioretty, and another good threat, Gallagher.
    I´m not a fan of making trades too often, but with the depth on the team, and the defensive depth on the farm, there is probably enough bait there to make an interesting trade with the right partner.
    I still think the team doesn´t HAVE to make a trade, and I believe the team with the depth it has, aided by a phenomenal offensive back-end, should be scoring more goals than it is doing. Some of that is on the coach.
    But if the right deal comes along for a good rugged forward, they should grab it.

  3. GrimJim says:

    How does the Bulldogs’ bench have one goal?

    http://www.hamiltonbulldogs.com/pressbox/stats/

  4. NCRhabsfan says:

    All these line changes. It seems to me that the Habs are destined to keep juggling lines forever as long as they have this blend of forwards. There are too many Gionta/DD/Brieres and not enough Gallys to go around. Bournival should be playing with the better forwards and Briere on the 4th line, but Briere doesn’t have 4th line skills so they don’t use Bournival like they should. Parros just steals oxygen. Good luck MT. It looks like the best you’re going to be able to do is jump start one line at the expense of another until MB shuffles the deck.

    • rhino514 says:

      I agree, Bournival has shown he has the raw skill and right attitude. Funny how the team will bend over backwards to get Desharnais going, but they won´t commit to someone like Bournival. Also one of the kids in hamilton should probably be the sixth defenceman, probably Pateryn right now. But the weakness of the Canadiens organization is the pressure to win now philiosophy, and that´s why guys like Briere get signed, guys who aren´t that good anymore, but who they feel more certain of getting a certain amount of output from instead of risking and investing in a a promising kid (unless he has the pedigree of a Galchenyuk or just blows everyone away like Gallagher when he came in)
      I also think you play Galchenyuk at his natural position and go through the growing pains when someone is that talented. The team would be stronger for it after 80 games.

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        Good post. Especially like last para re. Galchenyuk playing centre.

        It might cost us games. And we’re not noted for our patience. But if it helps him blossom, surely it would be worth it.

        So many balancing acts. It would be so valuable to make the playoffs, so that individuals get playoff experience and, collectively, the team adapts as a group to the style of the second season. So would we hope for him to play centre unless it started looking as though it might jeopardise our spot in the playoffs?

      • Bob_Sacamano says:

        I agree. I think this could easily be a better lineup than anything we´ve dressed so far this season:

        Pacioretty Plekanec Gionta
        Bournival Eller Gallagher
        Prust Galchenyuk Bourque
        Moen Desharnais White

        Briere

        Markov Subban
        Emelin Diaz
        Gorges Pateryn

        No more playing your best winger with your fourth of fith best centre. No more Desharnais and Briere. One sits (I think it should be Briere) the other one is on the fourth line. No more Bouillon and Murray as both suck (the love Murray gets here is just ridiculous and it´s a joke we signed him in the first place when Tom Gilbert was availabe). No more playing Emelin on the right and the last move would be to remove Gorges from the PP.

        Most of these moves (Briere and Desharnais in a lesser role, Bournival in a bigger role, no more Bouillon/Murray on the team and Gorges off the PP) would be very, very obvious ones.

  5. Danno says:

    Move Bournival to take Briere’s spot. Sit Briere. Move Prust to play with Eller and Gallagher. Finally, put White on the fourth line with Parros and Moen.

    Gionta – Plekanec – Galchenyuk
    Pacioretty – Desharnais – Bournival
    Gallagher – Eller – Prust
    Parros – Whitey – Moen

    Briere

    ________________________________________

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

  6. Maritime Ronn says:

    Just want to wish everyone a great evening, and to also thank the many for some very nice, kind, and caring posts yesterday.
    You know who you are, and I remember ( will always) them all.

    Well, in this neck of the woods something called a “Kitchen Party” usually breaks out on a Friday night – tonight being one of them.

    People get together and all chip in and bring some food, their choice of beverage, and munchies…and being by the ocean, that means all the good stuff.
    Supposed ‘Social Rank” and Ego is parked at the door…or you’re not allowed in.

    Apart from the food ( Lobster-Crab-Scallops from Digby…and whatever else was caught in the last 3-4 hours), the best part is the music!

    Some unbelievable talents/characters that were never discovered – or did not want to be discovered, or were deemed ‘bad habit’ folks by some music industry elite, are an incredible treat.
    They can play everything/anything, and just hanging in there is awesome.

    Gotta go – wish you were here!

  7. Eddie says:

    Of the key forwards who I would definitely think this team does not need and would surely be better off without:

    Desharnais, Briere, are right at te top of the list.

    Now clearly I do not think like our GM, because we just signed those two within the past year or so.

    Note to self; you are not GM material.

  8. HabFab says:

    Lucic gets as good as he gives… violent :)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BL23UAQZKT8

  9. jols101 says:

    Every time I go to the AHL website to check on the Bulldogs they are scheduled to play the Marlies. They must play inter-division games non stop in the AHL.

    The Marlies are loaded with tough guys. Staubitz, Devane, Broll, Brodie, etc. I think the only development our young kids are getting playing this team so often is how to handle the fisticuffs.

    • dr. gesundheit says:

      …might be a blessing in disguise. (i.e. maybe Staubitz can still lend a helping hand in the physical dept. by helping to prepare/indoctrinate some Bulldogs).

      Always liked Staubitz (despite his shortcomings, he did prove useful in his role and did what was expected of him during his short stay with the Habs…while having ’0′ backup)

      • Mr. Biter says:

        I still miss Staubitz. Took on all comers. I am happy to have Parros on the Habs but IMO Staubitz is a better overall player and with White, Staubitz, Moen/Bournival is a more “Efficient” as a 4th energy Line.

        Mr. Biter
        No Guts No Glory

  10. DDO_Habs_Fan says:

    RE: Paul Statsny rumours

    Didn’t Max play with Statsny on Team USA at the World’s last year when he had a great tournament? Just musing…

  11. zephyr says:

    i like the new lines except briere. put white or moen up there until bourque is back. bournival should be in the top 9. the eller line is gonna be a hustling line now.
    still think pateryn or tinordi (maybe both) are up b4 the end of the season.

  12. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Impatient for news on Thornton. Wasn’t it today?

  13. Maritime Ronn says:

    @ Bill

    Just curious, as it changes nothing.

    Why do you post a new comment, instead of posting under the original comment of a poster to allow some continuity of his/her comment thread?

  14. Storman says:

    Later boys and girls time for some Irish Coffee

    So this is Festivus
    And Briere what have you done?
    Another year over
    that time of year the Habs slump has begun

    And so this is Festivus
    I hope you have fun
    The feats of strength
    For The old and the young have begun

    A very merry Festivus
    And a happy New Year
    Let’s hope there are many girls
    Dancing on Festivus poles to cheer

    And so this is Festivus
    For weak and for strong
    For DD and Briere
    The signings were just so wrong

    And so happy Festivus
    For black and for white
    For Darren Pang
    Not being so damn bright

    A very merry Festivus
    And a happy New Year
    Let’s hope it’s a good one
    Boone blogs us a Cup this year

  15. CHicoHab says:

    Does anyone know what that belly flop slide to the net by PK with 6.7 seconds was about?? Looked comical but yet he wasn’t laughing.

  16. Bill says:

    No MRonn I was just jumping in there!

  17. savethepuck says:

    I have read a few comments regarding Gionta and my opinion is that he most likely is not in the team’s future plans. I think he will be free in the off season to choose where he wants to go.
    Some may say that he should be traded at the deadline for assets, but that is not going to happen. He is still an important part of this team and supplies the depth that MB will not have to offer assets and/or draft picks to be a buyers at the deadline.

    “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
    Carey Price

  18. Bill says:

    MRonn: I am not trying to stir the pot, play the language card, or troll when I say that Gerard Gallant, a very smart and experienced hockey guy, cannot coach the Habs. He is a unilingual anglophone. Who was the last unilingual anglophone to coach the Habs without the word “interim” attached?

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      Bill

      Are you Poster Strummer?
      I did not see your post about Gallant and was responding to Strummer re his impressions about Gallant.
      :-)

    • Just a Habs Fan says:

      Probably one of the reasons they don’t win as much or as often as we think they ought to is because of the need to hire only french speaking head coaches and not the best coach available whether that be english/french/italian/russian….there are good french speaking coaches but they haven’t been that good in Montreal…what does that mean ? I just think the job should go to the best candidate regardless of his language. Afterall they have to speak to the players…are they mostly english speaking…probably so. So it again becomes strictly and cultural service….fact remains if a franchise is to be successful in this NHL they need the best minds regardless of the language capabilities…..the other top tier teams do that…employ the best minds

  19. Bill says:

    Krob: I think Leblanc is being ignored because the perception is that he is not going to be more than a third-line defensive player, with minor offensive upside. Sort of a Brunet type player. This excites no one.

  20. Maritime Ronn says:

    @ Strummer

    Re Gerard Gallant:

    He does have Head Coaching experience with Columbus from 2003-07 on a team that was terribly managed and stocked by Doug MacLean…a guy that made Mike Milbury look smart.
    He had no chance to succeed there.

    The coaching boys also play the historic game of good cop-bad cop.
    The assistants are usually the good cops staying closer to the players and acting as liaisons between the (bad cop) head coach and players.

    One thing I didn’t know about Gallant was that he was an assistant Captain with Detroit during some Yzerman years, and played with Detroit from 1984-93.

    Then these 4 consecutive highlight stat years by Coach Gallant between 1987-90:

    38 goals/72 points and 216 penalty minutes
    34 goals/73 points and 242 penalty minutes
    39 goals/93 points and 230 penalty minutes!
    36 goals/80 points and 240 penalty minutes!

    He also had 39 points in 58 playoff games.

    http://www.hockey-reference.com/players/g/gallage01.html

    OK – So what do we have here?

    A guy that played the game – a guy that both scored and played big time tough – a guy that showed up in the playoffs, and a guy that has experience behind the bench as an NHL head Coach, and also has a Memorial Cup Ring.

    *Maybe the Habs next Head Coach isn’t as far away, or difficult to see as many believe…

  21. Bill says:

    Hey Luke, kudos on getting Kerry Fraser to answer your excellent question. I believe he answers it very well. I disagree, however, when he says that “the correct call” was made on Emelin. Downie absolutely embarrassed that ref, and I would imagine the red will not forget.

    • krob1000 says:

      Debateable…DOwnie sold it but Emelin threw it..he does go out of his way to attempt to elbow him…the reaction was over the top but I think the call was understandable veiwing the intentional elbow and expected injury (although we now know that to have been possibly exaggerated)..refs made right call under circumstances…this is oneof those cases where the idea of the coaches challenge and video may have come in handy though.

    • ffenliv says:

      It seems that PK has, over the last few seasons, been victim to his own theatrics. I’m not saying he’s an unabashed diver, but he does have a tendency to … exaggerate.

      I hope the same is now applied to Downie.

  22. krob1000 says:

    When ever anyone lists the teams prospects they don’t even acknowledge Leblanc anymore it appears…I bet in the last 20 lists I have seen he is not even included.

    Also when pointing out teams forward prospects..everyone focuses it seems on Reway/Andrighetto…5’11″ is just fine as well. Bozon is not short, Vail is not, the 5’11″ guys are fine and could still hit 6’0″ some of them, Crisp, Nevins, Mccarron, Gregoire, De La Rose, P Holland …these guys are all not “Smurfs”…the few slmaller guys that are around are all very good offensive palyers and are all doing very well currently. Most will not become NHL regulars but will still be valuable contributors to the development of others in the AHL adn I woul dbet one of Collberg, Hudon, Reqay <Andrighetto does become a regular…Christian Thomas is also looking pretty good of late.
    The D the HAbs have coming thrgouha re very good as well.

  23. Bill says:

    Annnnd just a little perspective for the bridge-jumpers on the site the last couple of days: the Habs are 3rd in the East at 19-11-3. Leafs are in 8th and three points out of ninth.

  24. Say Ash says:

    Just said hi to Chara in the shopping mall. Almost kicked him in the knee but thought better of it.

  25. Bill says:

    Dunboyne, I feel your pain on those essays, but no, I’m not marking them for you, haha. You’d probably be appalled at our standards anyway.

    I won’t repost about trades and size, but here’s the gist: the Habs would have to give up a lot to improve their size, and would diminish their skill and future a bit. I think Hobie’s idea was Desharnais, Gorges, Beaulieu, and a first for Dubinsky and Umberger. I this trade the Habs give up 45-50 point centre, a character Dman, a sure-thing top four D prospect (with top 2 upside) and a high pick, in exchange for a couple of big guys who can crash and bang and maybe put up 30-35 goals between them. No one seemed to like the idea, but you can’t expect to change the team if you’re not willing to give stuff up. Personally, I do that trade and bite the bullet. Habs win in the now, Columbus wins long-term.

    • Buzz Lightbeer says:

      I would do it now too. In a year where the east is anybody’s game,Price is playing his best hockey,the kids are alright,Pk is PK,Markov is in fine form and valuable guys like Pleks are not getting any younger i say why not and gamble. The only problem would be the loss of Gorges and who would replace him with none of the kids ready to make the jump it seems and Frankie B not being an option.

    • JF says:

      If we do that trade, who takes Gorges’ spot? And if we lose Beaulieu, who replaces him as a prospect? None of our other defensive prospects have his particular skills. We might be better able to stand up to some of the big, physical teams, but I’m not sure we’d be any closer to winning.

      If everything goes well – by which I mean if our goaltending continues at the level it is and we have no injuries to key players – I can see the Habs having a shot at winning the East (unless, of course, we have to face Philly along the way), but there is absolutely no way we’d beat one of the big, skilled Western teams in a seven-game series. And I don’t think the trade you mention would make that any more likely.

      • Bill says:

        If we do that deal, then we hope that Pateryn is able to take Gorges’s spot. He’s a big, mature, 23 year-old player with lots of AHL experience. I think he’s probably an upgrade on Gorges, And he plays RD.

        There is zero replacement for Beaulieu. He’s the key to the deal. He could easily be top 2 defenceman. We bite the bullet there.

        Dubinsky and Umberger definitely help. They make the 2nd and 3rd lines harder to play against. They cause problems for the opposition. Their linemates score more with them han they do right now.

        That’s the theory. It’s a costly trade no doubt. But if you feel the Habs are too small to win, then you have to support this trade idea.

        Full Breezer 4 Life

        • JF says:

          O.K., but I’d hope we assure ourselves that Pateryn is more or less ready before we do that deal. I’ve always liked Dubinsky, and Umberger has certainly been a Habs-killer. He’s getting on a bit, but I guess he can still pot close to 20 goals.

          I’m just not sure the addition of size and grit would be enough. We’d still be on the small side facing L.A., San Jose, Anaheim, or St. Louis. I think at any rate that Bergevin should wait until closer to the trade deadline before making a trade of that magnitude.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Not thinking about the actual personnel (Hobie’s), but agree with what is an obvious observation which in fact so often escapes us armchair GMs here: you have to give up stuff to get stuff.

      Posters should have to paste that in as a prologue to any trade proposals.

      (If any kind of cross-cultural curiosity starts to nag at you about Othello and the Irish teenager, I really won’t mind helping you out).

  26. Sportfan says:

    Marc Denis was named honorary captain for the WJC in 2015. Anyone know when single seats go up for sale?

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

    • Storman says:

      I believe they go on sale on Festivus Day, the way you wrote that you sound like a very very big Marc Denis fan,, the WJC is a pretty good spectacle in itself but to each his own LOL.

  27. DipsyDoodler says:

    I hate line suggestions but is there any doubt that this us our strongest lineup:

    Pled Gio Bournidentity
    Gally Eller Gally
    DD Max Bourque
    Prust white Moen

    ?

  28. Luke says:

    Well, It’s beer o’clock.

    Time to hit the pub for some snow-beers.

    Maybe sign a few autographs…

    Enjoy the weekend folks!

  29. vegas says:

    I like the spirit amongst the guys and they really seem to have a great locker room

    But I still don`t like the composition of the team

    I think our defense will do for this season, and who knwows we might get a late call-up. Moving forward we need a young version of Murray to play the right side unless Pateryn can become that guy.

    But up front we have no short term or mid term solution

    MT is trying to come up with the best solution but I think he has 2 issues. He is handcuffed with Briere and there is no room for him on this team, just a very bad signing and we have to live with it for another year or just eat up the contract and send him to the minors

    The other issue is his boner for Desharnais. I just don`t like him, He had 2-3 decent games and that`s it. Why does he benefit of all this ice time and privileges???

    There is nothing on the farm that can fill our needs and we are years away before hopefully McCarron, Crisp, DellaRose and Collberg make their way. PLus we don`t have much in terms of assets that we could logically trade away. The few guys we have available are of no interest to the rest of the league. Hopefully Bourque can come back inspired, but the only logical guy that would have yo be benched is Briere. Poor MT

  30. Sportfan says:

    Is MT finally taking off the Rose colored glasses and realizes Murray is better than the cube.

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

  31. Maksimir says:

    MT believes in maintaining pairs over trios on hisforward lines.. hence: DD-Patches, Pleks-Gio, Moen-Prust…

    He must have had a bad experience during a menage-a-trois

  32. DipsyDoodler says:

    Do you guys derive any pleasure from hockey?

  33. Storman says:

    When is Festivus

  34. Ozmodiar says:

    Meh, don’t like Briere playing along side Desharnetty.

  35. Steeltown Hab says:

    It’s really annoying that we need to have a player who grinds to always get Pacioretty going because he’s such a diva.

    Scores 30 goals, no longer feels the need to play with the intensity that got him into the league.

    ———————————

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

  36. Hobie Hansen says:

    “It looks like Ryan White and Francis Bouillon will be healthy scratches for the second straight game against the Islanders.”

    White was in last night Cowan.

  37. Habs_101 says:

    I like the logic in these lines, its a decent time to try it… It sets things up nicely for Bourque to slot in on the right of DD and Patch. I would like to see Gallagher and Gionta swapped though. I REALLY want to see what Pleks can do in an offensive role AND what Eller can do in Plek’s role! this team NEEDS to define roles, this is what quality teams do. 1 – top offensive unit, top ozone starts. 2 – second offensive unit, secondary starts. 3 – shut down line, d zone starts mostly (offensive potential). 4 – ENERGY, crash, hit, play responsible D (having Briere, DD on this line is not effective what so ever, DD/Briere should be played one at a time in place of each other UNLESS we are injured.

    1 – Galchenyuk – Pleks – Gallagher
    2 – Patches – DD – Bourque
    3 – Bournival – Eller – Gionta
    4 – Prust – White – Moen

    Ideally line 1 and line 3 would see the most minutes up front each night 15-20 mins each. That leaves 20-30 minutes for the other two lines. Line 2 should play 12-16 mins a night with line 4 getting whats left is about 8-14 minutes for the energy guys.

    GO HABS GO!

    • krob1000 says:

      RE your roles….the team does do that…you just disagree with who they do it with. DD line gets top ozone starts, Pleks line is shutdown, 4th line is energy and Eller line is secondary line. What you are outlining is exactly what they have in place just diff’t personnel. I liked it personally when they ran 4 lines with offensive ability and had one mostly energy line but were still a threat to score. I still see this lineup as having half of the game with little puck movement from the d, that leaves half of the game divided by approx 3.5 lines to generate offense. That is a tough order…would love to see them split MArky and PK and balance the 4th so team is balanced better.

      • Habs_101 says:

        Yea, exactly. My point is more about who is being used in what capacity than actual roles of the lines on the team. Our top o-line should not have DD AND BRIERE. Im suggesting you form the lines based ON the roles.

        therefore line 1 (offense #1) top three offensive guys at their position
        line 3 (shutdown) top ALL around players o and d
        line 4 (energy) all crashers and bangers NO finesse/offensive players
        line 2 (offense #2) what is left…

        Galchenyuk, Plekanec, Gallagher are our top LW, C, RW in terms of offensive production they should be together. As people get hot and cold the lines could change SLIGHTLY. but the premise should always be the same. It seems like with MT there is simply a jumble put together completely new after EVERY loss…. how can you build momentum and grow AS A TEAM this way?

        GO HABS GO!

      • galchenyuk27 says:

        Are you drunk lol

    • Marc M says:

      I like most of what’s being done, but the one combination that leaves me scratching my head is putting Briere with Patches and DD. They’re all talented guys, but they’re all mostly perimeter players. Patches is also at his best when he plays a simple north-south game, whereas Briere is better holding up, creating space and time, etc. Two different styles that don’t mesh, which is why they have had 0 success when put together this season. Patches, the biggest by far, also doesn’t go get pucks. That’s why Gallagher was so effective with when he played with them. So now you have 3 guys together who rarely win puck battles, rarely drive the net, rarely stand in front of the net… yet they’re supposed to be a scoring line? I know one thing for sure about hockey: you can’t score without the puck.

      I’ve been wanting to see Bournival with Eller and either Galchenyuk or Gallagher, so this it’s not all bad news, but I think you need to swap Briere with Gallagher to get 3 true scoring lines. Briere with Eller and Bournival means he’s playing with guys with legs and skill, which lets him use his, and he doesn’t have to battle down low, but can stay high and get fed. I also think Bournival and Eller and pretty good defensively, which makes up for Briere when they’re in their own end.

      Man it’s so much easier being an armchair coach ^_^

    • boing007 says:

      I like that combination. Maybe it would work.

      Richard R

    • WVHabsfan says:

      Love those lines!

  38. slyCH says:

    St-Pierre taking time off, giving up his belt.

    • Strummer says:

      He wore a Nordique’s jersey for his announcement- UUGHH

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

  39. krob1000 says:

    Have you ordered your Festivus pole yet? I was just joking witha cowworker unfamiliar with Festivus and Seinfeld…had no idea how far people had taken it!
    .
    http://www.festivuspoles.com/pages/Festivuspoles.htm
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Festivus

  40. JUST ME says:

    As much as being in first place was the time to take it in stride and not get overexcited, losing two in a row is not the end of the world either. They did look empty yesterday and a second too slow. There is always tomorrow i guess.

    Anyway although there are big challenges ahead being the second half season slump scare and the playoff run ,it still needs to be taken one game at a time.

    This GSP guy sounds like he is fried. Sounded shaken and on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Best wishes to him for a healthy future.

  41. adamkennelly says:

    Pacioretty – Desharnais – Briere – seriously?

  42. Timo says:

    That is a shakeup of all shakeups… The biggest world has ever seen. Woohoo Michael Therrien.

    And the line that sucked the most last night is still intact. I mean, that’s why they pay Therrien the big bucks. He sees what no one else does.

    • slyCH says:

      He see’s dead people…

    • Just a Habs Fan says:

      The lines MT is going with next game is

      Pacioretty – Desharnais – Briere

      If that line is not successful he will then go with this line :

      Desharnais – Briere – Pacioretty

      Still if this line doesn’t produce he can always go with ]

      Briere – Pacioretty – Desharnais…..

      he has lots of options it seems to me so we ought to see one of these combos click for some massive production i nthe next game or two or three

  43. galchenyuk27 says:

    Has galchenyuk played with patches yet. Cant recall if they did or not I think they would dominate you can even throw patches hand puppet on the line to.

    • Just a Habs Fan says:

      Are you speaking of the 2013 Habs or another versioon…dominate..neither of these players dominate…Patches scores in bunches but inconsistently and that’s his reputation….he definitely doesn’t play the power forward role very often if ever….there’s a god hockey player hidden in that body and only comes out 3-4 times a season for a couple games. Most often he is a perimiter player and deosn’t seem he is interested. Gally hasn’t become anything near to what he ought to end up being….well the speculation says he ought to be…he certainly doesn’t dominate anything as yet…..

    • Timo says:

      Why can’t they break DD-Pacioretty duo? Wouldn’t it be interesting to see what Pacioretty can do with say Plekanec or Eller as his center? Perhaps it will turn on a few light bulbs in his head.

      • galchenyuk27 says:

        Patches Gally and Gally how about that. Patches will have no choice but to compete every shift or his line mates will make him look awful. He could just get into open area and the gallys will set him up all game.

  44. Sportfan says:

    People should break out into song about their towns more often!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x7CIgWZTdgw

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

  45. Buzz Lightbeer says:

    Looks like DD and Max are going to have to get together and have a little talk again.
    What bugs me most about last night is how it took 59 minutes to realize if you want to score on a regular basis you have to get your nose dirty. Gallagher excluded.

    • Storman says:

      Team needs leadership to step up I like Gionta but not as a Captain, he gives serviceable minutes on the ice.. Team needs to compete, needs to recognize before last 5 minutes of game, that it is time to ramp up there urgency.. This team needs leadership every forward wants to play with Gallagher, how about every player starting to play with his heart and urgency. he is too young to take a leadership role.. I am so tired of listening to Gorges ra ra and cliche nonsense.. Team needs a leader big time.. Someone has to step up and Gorges should back off he is not the guy..

      • galchenyuk27 says:

        Your crazy gorges pours his heart out for this team sacrifices his body for this team for years and years. Everyone on the team respects him gorges is not an issue. Is it cause he doesn’t speak French.

        • Storman says:

          I dont care if you speak sign like the guy at the Mandela memorial. there is no language to winning hockey games.. That said I do believe MB signed Briere due to geographical reasons and look what that did for him and the team,, Language is actually one reason for our mediocre era, if we cant just go after the best people. that truly sucks but that is another debate for another time,,, its Friday,,,,.

        • boing007 says:

          I’d rather see Beaulieu and Tinordi playing with the big boys, warts and all, than continue with Boullion and Gorges. For example, Beaulieu with Emelin and Tinordi with Murray.

          Richard R

      • Buzz Lightbeer says:

        For sure. Gio’s injuries and age have caught up to him,his slightly above average skills as a defensive forward are not making up for his lack of offence we are seeing from him now. His days of leading by example seem to be behind him now. (Not up his behind as MT would say) I’m getting a little sick of the Gorges broken record “pucks to the net,60 minutes of compete” lines as well.

  46. HabinBurlington says:

    Luke nice job by you getting that question on TSN, unfortunately the coiffed one fails to believe that 5 guys pushing and shoving Emelin is a skirmish.

    • slyCH says:

      Head scratcher isn’t it. But the league and refs have led me scratching my head to a bloody stump for years now, no brain left to make any sense of it. Their strategy has worked.

    • Eddie says:

      There was a wild over hand puch thrown in that non skirmish either by 14 or 44.

    • Buzz Lightbeer says:

      Hey Burly. I believe you are a fellow Jager junkie so i thought i would share this with you. X-mas came early for me in the form of my own jager tap machine complete with a crate,yes a crate of 1L bottles.
      56 herbs,here’s to good health.

    • Storman says:

      Referee Brotherhood, Fraser will criticize officials but not too the extent that is truthful, he still belongs to there brotherhood at heart, and more likely sides with them on most occasions.. Even media is scared to rip officials on a constant basis.. NFL officials get suspended ripped constantly by media in USA, not sure what hold Buttman has on Media here but NHL officiating is atrocious and needs help ,, use the technology available. GET THE CALL RIGHT…

    • Luke says:

      Thanks Burl.

      Did you notice he called me “astute” as well?

  47. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Are any of the technically agile able to isolate Rinaldo’s 2nd period (I think) hit on Murray and post it here?

  48. 24 Cups says:

    Wow, the Habs lose two games in a row and HI/O and EOTP have complete meltdowns.

    How about the Emelin hit on Downie? I find it a very tough call due to the circumstance. All I know is that if the roles were reversed Hab fans would want Downie hung from the rafters.

    Maybe we should wait for the Christmas break before passing any judgement on the team. All things considered, I’m still pretty happy with the team so far this year.

    • frontenac1 says:

      Downie is a Gunsel

    • slyCH says:

      It’s not being happy or discontent with the team after a couple loss, it’s when you see games like these that make you realize how things are going to develop once playoff time begins.

      • 24 Cups says:

        Fair enough but the team is what it is.

        On October 1st, the Habs were projected to be a bubble team that would probably fight tooth and nail to make the playoffs. Murray and Parros were added to beef up the line-up but only in limited roles. Briere was a token signing that was one of MB’s first major blunders.

        Right now, the team is sitting in pretty good shape. Are they still too small? Of course they are. Is that MT’s fault? No way. Is that fact of life going to change in the next year or so, probably not.

        Looking at our division, I would have to say that the real surprise has to be Tampa. All the other teams, including Montreal, are basically preforming the way most people thought they would.

        I still think the glass is half full. It might be beer instead of champagne but it’s half full.

        • slyCH says:

          Let’s see where the team is in the standings come trade deadline. If they’re still sitting pretty, then the real fun begins. If management brings something delectable to the table to go with your half full glass. You can trade the beer for champagne. CHeers.

    • HardHabits says:

      HIO I can understand. HIO has a collective mental break-down when down by a goal.

      What happened at EOTP? I gather the last two games saw the Habs Corsi/Fenwick take a beating.

  49. habs-fan-84 says:

    Gallagher – Eller – Bournival

    Now there’s a line people have been waiting to see for awhile…should be a good one.

    Galchenyuk has looked really good with Pleks and Gio.

  50. CHicoHab says:

    Next time we are down 6-0 or losing badly just for fun. Put Murray infront of their goalie during our PP. Could be entertaining take our mind off the beating we are suffering.

  51. Sean says:

    Checking out this mock draft:

    http://www.draftsite.com/nhl/mock-draft/2014/

    I dunno about the first round pick but I like the second rounder

    edit: Alexis Vanier— 29GP: 11 goals, 15 assists +13

  52. Storman says:

    I am so surprised the media has not jumped on Downie incident, looks like he is getting away with a complete farcical soccer type play. Not only do I believe he threw his arms and head back and then threw his stick across the ice all in attempt to sell the call,, I believe it was his intention from the get go to sell a head shot he saw the opportunity line up and played it perfectly, i am cant believe more players and media are not pointing this out..Current and Former players, ie media analysts know exactly what he did last night outrageous..

  53. Strummer says:

    Anyone besides me notice on 24CH how dominant Gerard Gallant is in discussions among the coaching staff?
    This would indicate that his influence is greater than you would think for an assistant coach and he may be responsible for some of the success of the team this season.

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

  54. mrhabby says:

    Some talk about Emelins hit on Downie. I wish he had actually made more of a hit and taken out mr. nice guy downie. Downie is one of those guys that has delivered his share of cheap dirty hits over the years to players and hopefully more is coming his way….just saying.

    • Strummer says:

      I would have preferred Emelin to lock Downie in the washroom of the team bus in his underpants.

      That is after a substantial elbow to the noggin.

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

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        Please. Still the dinner hour over here.

        Mr Habby, there were of course hits to enjoy last night, notably Rinaldo’s on Murray!

        • mrhabby says:

          mike..yes i caught most of them. were not angels but downie has such a bad reputation that it was nice to see. Murray seems to be playing a liitle better and his physicality is needed.

          • Dunboyne Mike says:

            Ha ha wasn’t even talking about clean or dirty. Just that Murray was like an insane bulldozer once or twice, bodies flying. The Rinaldo hit was my favourite, because it was Rinaldo who dealt, but it was Rinaldo who ended up in a heap on the ice! (In fairness to him — putz though he is — he seemed to be laughing about it when he had recovered sufficiently to get back on the bench).

  55. Storman says:

    I would think if the league believes the referee’s major and game mis conduct penalty for elbow to the head was the correct call. the league would have to suspend or at the very least fine Emelin to vindicate the call on the ice.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      And if they conclude that the call was mistaken, what do they do about Downie? I mean, it really is pretty outrageous.

      • Storman says:

        Downie’s actions last night were to me completely out of bounds, he crossed all the lines broke all the codes in this day and age of heightened awareness of head injuries,, completely outrageous, he should be brought in to explain his actions, but the league will attempt to hide this whole play, even the media is missing the boat calling for a suspension of Emelin.

        • Dunboyne Mike says:

          Is it to do with the available video? Is it something less than 100% conclusive?

          Downie should be suspended indefinitely and compelled to play soccer in the English Premiership or the Italian Serie A — they LOVE that stuff there (and believe ties and wins are the same thing).

  56. Dunboyne Mike says:

    Bourque and Pacioretty, perhaps Briere also — unable to ignore the voice of reason whispering to them about the hazards of further brain injury?

    If so, for their own sakes they should listen.

    If it’s not that, it’s just a mystery.

  57. Storman says:

    Luke i think your question made TSN and Kerry Fraser’s desk, although i do not agree with his assessment as i normally never do,

  58. Steeltown Hab says:

    Why is Galchenyuk’s role being wasted on Desharnais that’s the real issue. Desharnais is 27 if he can’t even be neutral defensively he’s not an NHL center, if he can’t play wing? Next.

    ———————————

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

  59. Maritime Ronn says:

    Pacioretty-Desharnais-Briere

    No doubt the Islander coaching staff is going to be burning the midnight oil trying to figure out how to stop this line.

    Their Dman coach must also be sweating bullets trying to figure out a strategy for puck battles in the corner, behind the net, and in front of the net.
    How do you battle ‘invisible’ – an NHL first?

    The huge concern will be those behind the back passes coming from the perimeter by the 3 goal 7 assist Centerman.

    Brendan Gallagher has to be both disappointed and miffed.
    No longer can he work like a Superman and be rewarded with nothing.
    Gallagher will now have to share the dirty area work with Bournival and Eller.

    Anyhow, maybe there should be less worries about lines posted.
    I checked Bodog Sportsbook and the Over/Under time for lines staying together is 4 minutes and 38 seconds.

    • savethepuck says:

      I am just hoping the opposition thinks they are our best line and plays their shutdown 5 against them. It will free up a lot of space for our real 1st line.

      “They don’t hang Conference Championship Banners from the rafters here”
      Carey Price

  60. Sportfan says:

    Well Emelin took out Downie that’s a tad funny lol

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

  61. CHicoHab says:

    No suspension. No hearing. We lose Emelin in a game for no reason. How can we compensated?

  62. Bill says:

    Thanks Habfan10912: it was a slog no doubt.

  63. Eddie says:

    So here’s question for the faithful.

    If it says here that Galchenyuk
    is our greatest offensive draft pick since our last Cup for sure,
    and Galchenyuk will never blossom the way he should playing the wing,
    what do we do if our well respected and well liked coach doesn’t think Galchenyuk is strong enough, DEFENSIVELY, to play center?

    • Habfan10912 says:

      If he’s not strong enough to play Center on this team he’ll never play center. Look, the team has played well but Galchenyuk is the future. It’s time.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Eddie, remember how stubborn MT was with his lines up until a few weeks ago? It occurred to me, as no doubt it occurred to many others, that his sudden enthusiasm for mixing and matching may have been precipitated by a whisper in his ear from further up the food chain.

      Does that happen in Montreal? Could it happen regarding Galchenyuk playing centre?

      • Eddie says:

        Not likely. It seems the “priority” is “getting Desharnais going”, which might take until the Spring.

        • Habs4LifeInTO says:

          Getting Desharnais going is going to cost us Max Pacioretty and as some have pointed out here, precious centre ice development time for Galchenyuk. If Max wasn’t babysitting DD he would no doubt be putting up more points. Is no one worried about him? These are the costs we should be adding to all the lost puck battles and missed d zone assignments form DD. I admire his tenacity to even be playing at this level but I cringe at what it costs the team every night.

          24 cups and counting….

    • HabinBurlington says:

      At times like this I am reminded of how from the outset I figured MT was a 2 year coach while MB evaluated all his talent from prospect to veteran. I will defer answering until the offseason. ;-)

    • krob1000 says:

      “and Galchenyuk will never blossom the way he should playing the wing”
      This is the part that I think people need to understand has never been proven and can never be. Galchenyuk is getting good minutes…getting pp time, getting weaker competition,etc and putting up pretty impressive numbers considering and if he were on a weaker team MT probably would be focussing on letting him make his mistakes. The fact the team is competitive is part of the problem if you call it that but Galchenyuk’s development is not as important as long as the team is doing well. This leaves them trying to maximize his (and all of the other players for that matter) development while not weakening the team. Same case can be made for Bournival, Eller,etc….
      Galchenyuk can hopefully learn quite a bit playing with Pleks and Gio. This likely also means that line will get pp time….how can this be viewed negatively unless not looking at bigger and more important picture..which is the team?

  64. Sportfan says:

    So I missed the game yesterday, I heard Emelin hit Downie or something around those lines?

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

  65. Storman says:

    A couple of thoughts..
    Here is hoping this saying rings true,, Briere today gone tomorrow..
    Will Josh Engorges please shut up in the room, let someone else take a leadership roll with the team.

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Thanks Jim. To me it’s not obvious what happened or didn’t. I presume Shanahan had the benefit of more angles and sup-slo.

      Really, the repercussions of Downie faking it are considerable. Montreal loses an important piece for the rest of the game. Hartnell and co — faithful to their dissembling team-mate — risk injury and sanctions by retaliating, believing the injury to be real. And the league (God bless it) wastes time scrutinising one player because another one was playing the system.

      I honestly think Downie’s ass should fry in a long, bad way.

  66. Bill says:

    Dunboyne: You can return those essays ANY DAY YOU WANT. Ten per day is an unsustainable pace. I’d hold on to then until after Christmas personally. What are you doing assigning that many essays due at this time of year?? Do you enjoy suffering?

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      No no no, entirely culpa mea! Kids submitted them 3 weeks ago, whereupon we were hit with a Whole-School Evaluation (government inspection), two weeks of paperwork and classroom observations, wiped out all normal work and created massive back-logs. They have an exam next week, getting those essays back would help them prepare better. Oh woe!! Haven’t even bought a tree yet!

      (Hey, if I scan a few as pdfs and post them on here, maybe you’d…!)

  67. bwoar says:

    I look at those lines and see 6 players I want for next year, and 6 others I’d trade asap or simply let walk as UFA at the end of the year. And yet it seems only 1 is likely to be gone (Gionta).

    Also, Galchenyuk should be playing centre before the end of this year. I hope MB is done making commercials and actively doing something useful for team-building.

    “thoroughbred”

  68. Bill says:

    I’m the last guy to be a size queen, but come on: these lines are puny.

    • Jerman says:

      They have 4 forwards that are 5.9 Have 1 on each line lol.

      I don’t like to complain about size usually, but I think we have reach our max for small players. Even when we look at our brightest prospects, it doesn’t look like it will improve:

      Sebastian Collberg – 5 11
      Charles Hudon – 5 11
      Artturi Lehkonen – 5 11
      Sven Andrighetto – 5 9
      Martin Reway – 5 9
      Christian Thomas – 5 9

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      (30 Othello essays to return Monday, 10 per day to make it, but Hobbit opening, kids keen…. Opinion?)

    • Dunboyne Mike says:

      Bill, please repost from the last thread re. trades and size.

      Meantime, let’s all be honest. The stats which emerged last night, about how Montreal hogs all the sub-5’9 players are worse on paper than in reality: Gionta is almost certainly gone next season, and Gallagher just doesn’t count because he plays huge. Therefore, prospect conveyor-belt aside, our horizon includes two small under-achieving forwards. Surely we can deal with that. Look at it this way, we could have a brainless player like Rinaldo (“Me like skate into this concrete wall. Oh! Me fall down.”) or Kaleta. Two of those would be worse.

    • Habfan10912 says:

      Bill, my compliments and admirations to you for sticking out the game blog last night. You are very brave and patient.

  69. Bill says:

    Obviously that should be Plekanec on the top line with Chuck and Gionta. Little editing guys. Frig.

  70. Jerman says:

    I like how Briere is on 2 lines and that Pleck is benched, can’t have enough of Briere (AKA i think there was a typo in the lines… I hope)

  71. huge_polar_bear says:

    I am happy, if somewhat surprised by the lack of a hearing or even a fine for Emelin.

  72. Sean says:

    So close!

    Same to you Ron

  73. Maritime Ronn says:

    Happy Friday to all


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