The annual HIO Summit was a success despite the San Jose Sharks beating the Canadiens 2-0 Saturday night at the Bell Centre.
Close to 200 members of the HIO community were in town for the game and the summit, which is organized by Ian Cobb, a longtime Canadiens fan who grew up in St. Lambert and now lives in Belleville, Ont. The HIO Summit was first held in 2007, but had to be cancelled last year because of the NHL lockout.
The Canadiens didn’t practise on Sunday as the team travelled to New York to face the Rangers Monday night (7:30 p.m., TSN-HABS, RDS, TSN Radio 690). Travis Moen, who took a puck in the face during Saturday’s game, didn’t make the trip. Patrick Holland, a recent call-up from the Hamilton Bulldogs, will stay with the Canadiens and make the trip to New York.
Rookie defenceman Nathan Beaulieu was assigned to Hamilton after Saturday’s game and forward Louis Leblanc was called up from Hamilton Sunday afternoon and was to join the Canadiens in New York. In seven games with the Bulldogs, Leblanc had four goals and two assists and was plus-2. The Canadiens also called up defenceman Greg Pateryn, who was to join the team in time for Monday’s morning skate in New York.
Offseason acquisitions George Parros, who has been sidelined by a concussion suffered in the season opener, and Douglas Murray, who has yet to play a regular-season game because of a lower-body injury, both travelled to New York with the club.
On Saturday night, there was a sea of Canadiens jerseys at the Baton Rouge restaurant for an HIO pregame dinner and charity raffle for the Montreal Canadiens Children’s Foundation. After the game, the HIO fans got together at Hurley’s Irish Pub on Crescent St. to discuss the game, catch up with old friends from the site and make new ones.
Cobb reports that more than $3,500 was raised for the children’s foundation through the raffle.
The HIO fans came from across North America and beyond for the summit. Among those attending were Eric Zeigenfuss from Philadelphia (photo above), who brought his sons Luke and Ryan along for the trip, and Rob Hing and his wife, Alayne, who came from Calgary. John Syed travelled from England, while Nicole Syed came from Austria and Jamie Galsim travelled all the way from Australia.
Former Canadien Rejean Houle, now an ambassador for the club, dropped in at the pregame dinner, bringing a stick autographed by the current team for the raffle. Houle had a chance to get reaquainted with former Montreal Junior Canadiens tough-guy Allan Globensky, who was also in attendance.
With back-to-back games on tap for the Canadiens, look for Peter Budaj to start in goal in New York with Carey Price playing against Dallas Tuesday at the Bell Centre.
(Photo by John Mahoney/The Gazette)