St. Louis nets OT winner against fantasy Habs

Montreal Canadiens' Brian Gionta scores a goal on Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Mathieu Garon during the first period of play of their NHL pre-season game at the Colisee in Quebec City

Suffering Canadiens withdrawal? The Gazette has the answer with the ultimate fantasy experience as beat writer Pat Hickey and Gazette techie Eric Tobon employ EA Sports NHL 13 to produce The Season That Isn’t. Here’s how things might have looked in Thursday night’s game between the Canadiens and the Tampa Bay Lightning  at the Tampa Bay Times Forum. Be


The Gazette

TAMPA BAY _ Martin St. Louis scored at 4:17 of overtime to give the Tampa Bay Lightning a 4-3 victory over the Canadiens Thursday night at Tampa Bay Times Forum.

St. Louis, who collected assists on two third-period power-play goals by Vincent Lecavalier, took a lead pass from Eric Brewer, and roofed a backhander after deking backup goaltender Peter Budaj.

“He put a pretty good move on me,” said Budaj, who made 37 saves. “The ice was pretty bad and I wasn’t expecting him to do anything fancy with the puck but he fooled me.”

The Canadiens, who managed only 23 shots on former Canadien Mathieu Garon, took a 2-1 lead into the third period but Lecavalier tied the score at 2:34 and then gave the Lightning the lead at 13:54.

The lead didn’t last long as Travis Moen scored his seventh of the season when he scored off the rebound of a shot by Josh Gorges at 14:29.

“Those penalties hurt us in the third period and it was particularly painful because they weren’t good penalties,” said coach Michel Therrien. “The second one was a retaliation penalty and those are selfish penalties. When we were at even strength, we outplayed them.”

The Lightning went 2-for-7 on the power play while the Canadiens had two power plays and generated only one shot on goal.

Matt Carle scored the only goal of the first period at 6:59 but the Canadiens took the lead with two second-period goals. Colby Armstrong tied the score at 6:31 when he deflected a shot by Tomas Plekanec. Armstrong was filling in for Erik Cole, who made a brief visit to the locker room after taking a hard check along the boards. Cole returned later in the period and gave the Canadiens their only lead when he scored at 15:24.

The Canadiens continue to play without P.K. Subban and David Desharnais but Therrien said Desharnais will return to the lineup Friday night when the Canadiens play the Florida Panthers in Sunrise. Subbsn is in Florida as he continues his rehab from a hip pointer but he said he’s at least two weeks away from a return.

“With the snowstorm hitting Montreal, it’s nice to have the warm weather but it’s hard to follow my brother at the world juniors when we’re down here,” said Subban, whose brother Malcolm is Team Canada’s No. 1 goaltender.


  1. Mavid says:

    me too..let me know when its over and your ready to play..otherwise take a hike

  2. JohnBellyful says:

    This could be the tipping point that drove the league to make a new offer.
    With so much time on their hands, and feeling obligated to fill air time that had been set aside for hockey, NHL officials organized a roast with Gary Bettman as the guest of honour, to show the world the commissioner has a sense of humour:

    Don Rickles: Thanks for that wonderful introduction, Ronnie [rolls his eyes].
    Geez, kid, you look lost up here without your security upholstery. Here, let me make you feel at home: You’re a jerk!
    [Swivels head and looks at Bettman, swivels back and looks directly at camera]
    We’re roasting a hockey puck?!!
    [Leans over and tells Bettman] It’s a little black disc, Gary, that hockey players slap around. What’s that? They do that to you too? Well, boohoo, cry me a river why don’t you, you little Ratpoleon.
    [Straightens up behind lecturn, holds hands up, palms out, looks baffled] Seriously, folks, all the guys you coulda roasted and you dummies pick Bettman? What’s he ever done to deserve a dinner? He’s burned two seasons, and he’s working on a third. For this he gets a seat at the head table?
    [Turns to Bettman] Just keep your mouth shut, don’t say a word, and you won’t screw up here like you did at the bargaining table.
    [Stares at Bettman who maintains a frozen grin] What is that, rent-a-rictus. Or did you actually shell out for a smile implant? Who was the donor? A 10-year-old corpse? Next time you send Daly out for a body part, tell him to pick up a heart while he’s at it.
    [Reaches over, grabs Bettman’s cheeks with both hands, gives them a few shakes and then pulls them out and lets go. The smile remains, only wider – a huge mirthless grin. Rickles recoils, his eyebrows raised]
    Neat trick, Gary. Now do us a favour and make the rest of you disappear. Here, let me help you.
    [Walks behind behind Bettman, lifts him by the armpits and looks down]
    Just as I thought, a booster seat. Figures. The only booster he’s ever had and he uses it to prop up his sorry ass.
    [Returns to the lecturn] Why are we here again? [Pulls out some notes and begins reading] Hmmm. 1993. League replaces a Stein [glances over to Bettman] with a shot glass.
    [Reads aloud from Wikipedia] “The owners hired Bettman with the mandate of selling the game in the U.S. market, ending labor unrest, completing expansion plans, and modernizing the views of the ‘old guard’ within the ownership ranks.”
    What happened, you read only half the memo? And it says ‘selling the game’, not selling it out.
    But that’s the NHL for ya. It coulda hired a lawyer who actually knows something about the game, even played it, but chose you as commissioner instead. Talk about getting the short end of the stick.
    But, Gary,from the bottom of my heart, I say this with all sincerity, you have become the face of hockey – a face only a mother could love. You’re the skate guards that won’t come off, the shield that’s permanently fogged, the car that parks in the middle of a road hockey game.
    Oh yeah, and you’re a hockey puck!
    [Walks behind Bettman, pulls suit coat over his head, and begins slapping him around]
    [Line begins to form behind Rickles. Scene fades to commercial]

  3. kempie says:

    Dear NHL & NHLPA:

    At this point nobody really gives a ****. Get together & figure it out if you can. Until then, kindly just STFU.

    – pretty much everybody

  4. Sean Bonjovi says:

    IMO this “offer” from the NHL is basically the deal that will eventually get signed, and I think that the league has known from the beginning that a deal something like this was Almost Certainly the best deal for the NHL that the NHLPA would ever agree to, but that the NHL would be willing to cancel one full season and part of another just in case, maybe the players would cave in and give the owners some free money, so maybe the teams that make lots of money have decided that it’s time to sign the deal and start making money again, which is something that I didn’t think would happen for another ten months, and maybe I was right before about the league wanting the lockout to last until November 2013 just to see how much they can get, and that the details of this proposal from the NHL include things the league knows that the players will Never agree to, and that this whole proposal is just another marketing exercise, but I would like to state for the record that I might have initially over-estimated the NHL’s stubbornness and resolve, and that I now believe that a new CBA could possibly get signed in the next few weeks.

    P.S. ^ One sentence ^ :)

  5. Habilis says:

    Funny fact of the day:

    Apparently, the ever reliable Eklund knew about the new NHL offer several hours before everyone else (ducks to avoid all the empty beer bottles being thrown).

    Is this just a case of a broken watch being right twice a day or does Eklund actually have some reliable sources?

    • Mike D says:

      Broken clock. Eklund’s still a knob and anyone who reads his junk for more than pure entertainment (humour) purposes should get their head checked.

      – Honestly yours
      Twitter: @de_benny

    • HabinBurlington says:

      All Hail Eklund! Who knew he is a bike courier in New York City and he got the job to deliver the offer! Either that or he is a carrier pigeon who happens to run a website. :)

  6. Phil C says:

    About the discussion below about the Camara hit on Luza, Camara’s shoulder clearly hits Luza in the head. It is so obvious to me that I can’t believe it is even something that is being argued about. It is especially obvious in the slow motion replay. Luza looked like was knocked out from the initial contact before he hit his head on the ice.

  7. jols101 says:

    Just a heads up – Sportsnet at 7:30 – IceCaps vs Bulldogs.

    The last few weeks Sportsnet has been showing many Bulldog games, I wonder if PK being a guest analyst has anything to do with that. Regardless, it is great that they are.

    • Ron says:

      Thanks Ron, would have missed most of the game untill I checked on here later. Hope for a win. They have played better games with the IceCaps so maybe 2 points.

  8. twilighthours says:

    But enough of all that. Can someone who has been following the various proposals comment on how the latest NHL proposal stacks up?

    Will we have a deal?

    • Habilis says:

      The league moved from 5 to 6 years on max term and went from 5% to 10% on variance along with putting the 300mil back on the table. CBA length remains the same (10 years with an out at 8 years for either side).

      They’re simply too close now, a deal will get done.

  9. ooder says:

    not a fan of yakupov so far… when Kuznetsov captained the russian squad the guy would put the team on his shoulders with sensational performances.
    Yakupov has spent to much time talking to the media and not enough time focusing on his game play. not a good captain at all imo
    The 2010-11 Stanley Cup was not won, but given

  10. twilighthours says:

    Regarding the discussion, below, on throwing a big hit that takes the hitter out of the play. I will disagree with Chris and agree with Riga. A huge hit that takes the D out of the play, or allows the team to gain the zone, or even creates a rush against is sometimes worth throwing. We all know the psychological impact a hit like that can have on the opponent. The crowd gets into it, the bench gets into it, and it’s more valuable than preventing the opponent from gaining the zone. I would argue that most of emelin’s or subban’s big hits fall into this category.

    All that said, the Jenner and Lipon hits were still egregious.

  11. HabFanSince72 says:

    From the NHL offer:

    “Each Club will be entitled to execute up to one “Compliance Buy-Out” prior to the 2013/14 season pursuant to which payments made to the Player will not be charged against the team’s Cap,”

    So long, Scotty.

    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

  12. Chuck says:

    Carey catching some flak:

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

  13. Timo says:

    So… was Santa good to everyone this year?

  14. Chris says:

    There seems to be confusion here, where people keep trying to apply North American rules to IIHF tournaments.

    Here is the NHL rule on head-checking:

    Rule 48 – Illegal Check to the Head

    48.1 Illegal Check to the Head – A hit resulting in contact with an opponent’s head where the head is targeted and the principal point of contact is not permitted. However, in determining whether such a hit should have been permitted, the circumstances of the hit, including whether the opponent put himself in a vulnerable position immediately prior to or simultaneously with the hit or the head contact on an otherwise legal body check was avoidable, can be considered.

    48.2 Minor Penalty – For violation of this rule, a minor penalty shall be assessed.

    48.3 Major Penalty – There is no provision for a major penalty for this rule.

    48.4 Game Misconduct Penalty – There is no provision for a major penalty for this rule.

    48.5 Match Penalty – The Referee, at his discretion, may assess a match penalty if, in his judgment, the player attempted to or deliberately injured his opponent with an illegal check to the head. If deemed appropriate, supplementary discipline can be applied by the Commissioner at his discretion.

    Now here is the IIHF rule on head checking:


    a) A player who directs a check or blow, with any part of his body, to the head and neck area of an opposing player or ”drives” or ”forces” the head of an opposing player into the protective glass on boards, shall be assessed, at the discretion of the Referee, a:

    Minor penalty + Automatic Misconduct penalty (2’+10’)
    Major penalty + Automatic Game Misconduct penalty (5’+GM)
    Match Penalty (MP)

    b) A player who injures an opponent as a result of checking to the head and neck area shall be assessed a

    Match Penalty (MP)

    c) Blows to the head area during a fight or altercation are covered and are to be penalized under Rule 528 Fisticuffs or Roughing.

    There are very significant differences between these two rules. The IIHF does not bother with intent, but injuries. Nor do they mitigate the penalty by trying to judge whether the player put himself in a vulnerable position (don’t we all remember the outrage of Chris Campoli getting crushed by Ryan Malone only to have Shanahan say it was Campoli’s fault for putting himself in a vulnerable position?). In the IIHF, you are responsible for injuries to other players if you make contact with the head. They basically treat contact to the head the way the NHL treats a stick contacting the head: any contact is a penalty, and if you injure the player (draw blood), the penalty is more severe. If there was intent, it is a major or even a match penalty.

    The IIHF is the same, but their head contact rule has more teeth. Any contact is 2 + 10. If it was judged to be severe enough, it is 5 + game misconduct or a match penalty. If the opposing player is injured, it is automatically a match penalty.

    If anything the referees gave Camara an out by calling it charging. It was not charging, it was head contact and therefore he should have received a match penalty and automatic one game suspension if the rule book were called properly. Luza was bleeding profusely from his nose while on the ice, and he almost certainly got a concussion from both the hit and having his head bounce off the ice.

    By the way, that incident is proof positive that helmets save lives.

    • sane hockey fan says:

      Except Camara’s hit wasn’t directed at the players head.

      THIS is a hit that is directed at a players head.

      • Chris says:

        It doesn’t have to be intentional. It has to be head contact. There was a ton of head contact in that hit.

        The intent would decide how many extra games it would be. I think that a game misconduct was warranted in this case, just to prevent the game from turning into another brawl. That being said, it would have been unfortunate if he got the match penalty and automatic 1-game suspension that goes along with it. So the referees neatly side-stepped it by calling it charging.

        • Hansen Hobie says:

          Not a hit to the head in the slightest. Shoulder right to the upper chest. The player had the wind knocked out of him and banged his head off the ice.

          And the ref had no intent of calling a penalty until he saw the player was hurt and he better call one just to be safe.

          • Chris says:

            People don’t usually bleed from the mouth and nose, as Luza was doing, when they bang the back of their head off the ice.

            I don’t know how anybody can watch that replay in slow motion and say that the face was not hit by Camara’s shoulder. 1:15-1:16 in the TSN game report are the relevant frames. I can’t do anymore than point at the video. Luza’s head is already recoiling before Camara’s shoulder makes contact with his upper chest. If you don’t see it, then there really isn’t anything I can say that would change your mind.

          • piper says:

            It looked to me like shoulder to chest and inertia causes Luza’s head to hit Camara. Hence the bloody nose and mouth. But I guess others will see it differently.

          • Hansen Hobie says:

            It seems someone didn’t get the pair of glasses they needed for Christmas?

            And secondly, you hear either Ray Farrero or Gord Miller mention a couple times there was no hit to the head.

            I know you’ve been to a few OHL games but I might listen to the experts over you on this one.

            And finally, there was no “hit to the head” penalty called. It was called charging.

          • Chris says:

            Hobie: I prefer to trust my eyes over what experts tell me. I’ve watched the slo-motion replay of that hit about 25 times this morning, which I’m guessing is about 24 times more than Ferarro and Miller got before they made their judgement.

            I wish I could post a frame-by-frame GIF of this one. I’m not arguing intent or that he tried to do it. I’m not accusing Camara of being dirty.

            But in this case Ferarro and Miller are simply wrong. It won’t be the first time play-by-play announcers get something wrong, nor will it be the last.

            By the way, here was the comment in my first post that we are replying to: “If anything the referees gave Camara an out by calling it charging.” Note that I already addressed that a head-checking penalty was not assessed. The point, which you seem to have missed, is that if it were called what it actually was, Camara would have an automatic suspension. The referees did him a favour by calling it a charge, which it most certainly was not.

            piper: The thing that makes me call headshot is that his head begins moving backwards and never jerks forwards. If it was inertia, his head would have to first snap forwards to hit Camara’s shoulder. But it moves backwards right from the first contact. The only way for that to happen is if it is the primary contact point.

          • Hansen Hobie says:

            the primary point of impact was the chest, bottom line. Did a bit of the shoulder graze the chin, possibly, and that’s a very generous possibly.

            You can’t possibly call that a hit to the head. Camara made every attempt, and did, throw a clean, hard hit.

            And the bloody mouth and nose was caused by his head slamming off the ice. The player bit his tongue or side of the mouth.

            And the referees were generous in calling it charging? Do you honestly believe what you’re saying? LOL. The ref wasn’t going to call a damn thing! Then thought he’d better call something because there was a serious injury.

            And to top it all off, TSN’s James Duthie said immediately after that the ref told the Canadian bench he thought it was a clean hit!

            So as usual in the IIHF, the refs don’t know the rules, the players aren’t sure and it stinks compared to the NHL.

          • twilighthours says:
    • piper says:

      I agree with what you’re saying Chris, except I don’t think Camara’s hit was to the head but i’ll take another look at it.

  15. Hobes says:

    Anthony Camara’s hit was the perfect definition of a clean, hard hit. How charging was even called baffles me? He wasn’t even moving his feet.

    The Slovak should be embarrassed for having his head down, watching the puck bounce around in his skates for what seemed like an eternity.

    In the OHL, Camera totally expects that player to have lifted his head in advance of making contact. They should kick the Slovak out of the tournament to protect his wellbeing if he’s unable to play competently at that level.

    Switching topics, Galchenyuk is something very special. He looked great again in today’s loss against Russia. If this new offer from the NHL leads to a deal, there’s a 95% chance we’ll see Galchenyuk play with the Habs this year.

    • Chris says:

      I suspect they called charging so that they could avoid the mandatory match penalty designation for the injury if they called it a check to the head.

      By calling it charging, they had the choice of match penalty (and mandatory suspension) or major + game misconduct (no suspension).

      As for the Slovak, I think you’re being harsh. I see these kinds of hits ALL the time in the OHL and they are almost always penalized to avoid the game getting out of control. The ones that aren’t penalized often result in later retaliations, something good referees try to stamp out.

      In this case, the rules are different between the IIHF, who have implemented some tough rules to stamp out head contact, and the CHL/NHL, which are trying to judge intent. The IIHF puts more emphasis on results, not intent.

      Every year, we see people discussing the officiating in terms of the CHL/NHL rule book. This is not the rule book that the tournament is played under, and Hockey Canada must do a better job of teaching its players the differences.

      • Hansen Hobie says:

        What bothers me is that if the Slovak wasn’t injured there wouldn’t haven’t been an ejection. You can either throw that hit or you can’t???

        Should Canada stop throwing body checks now just to be safe?

        • Chris says:

          In IIHF rules, there almost certainly would not have been an ejection if the Slovakian wasn’t hurt. There could have been a penalty, but I didn’t see the game live to see if either referee was signalling a penalty before it was clear that he was badly hurt and not just winded.

          But you’re trying to have your cake and eat it too. If you are going to throw huge hits to wear down the opponent, you run the risk of injuring the opponent and getting tossed yourself.

          There must be a deterrent, a risk, associated with that philosophy. If not, then you might as well just take the referees out of the game and let the players settle it. And the Europeans know very well how to use their sticks for something other than dangling and shooting.

          • Hansen Hobie says:

            The deterrent is 2 minutes or more in the box. Suspensions or ejections should not be determined on injuries. Let the players and coaches know what they can and can’t do before the game. Injuries happen in hockey.

            If someone swings the stick or blatantly attempts to injure someone, toss him for the tournament. If someone throws a clean hit and someone gets hurt, that’s hockey! Suck it up!

    • piper says:

      If Camara gets suspended for that hit then they might as well take hitting out of hockey because that was definitely a good old time hockey check.

      • Chris says:

        He is not being suspended.

        But that was not a “good old time” check either. Let’s call a spade a spade…he made no effort for the puck, nor did he make any effort to keep the puck in the zone (you would wedge yourself against the boards if that was your intent, as is usually done by forwards in that case).

        He had one goal in mind…obliterating the opponent. Unfortunately for he and Luza, Luza was in a stupid position when he got hit (although nobody can argue he knew that Camara was coming). The puck got tied up along the boards, Luza took a fraction of a second too long to field it, and boom. His tournament is likely over.

        • piper says:

          I’ve been watching hits like that for 40 years at all levels of hockey and is usually only called a penalty if the ref didn’t see the hit and only the result.

        • Hansen Hobie says:

          He made no effort for the puck?

          Last time I checked, no pun intended, there is nothing wrong with completely separating a player from the puck and either picking it up yourself or allowing another teammate to take possession.

          When you level someone at open ice is the puck going to be sitting right at your feet when you’re travelling at top speed.

          When you hit someone head on you’re trying to first knock him into orbit and then worry about picking up the puck. You’re not thinking puck when you level someone.

          • Chris says:

            Exactly my point. There is nothing wrong with separating a player from the puck, of ignoring the puck and going for the massive hit.

            But if you’re going in with that intent and you misjudge the timing, or something weird happens, and your opponent gets injured, there are repercussions.

            Camara’s hit was reckless. There was no ability for him to let up or adjust should something happen. I imagine his thinking was that Luza would have fielded it cleaner and been facing him a bit earlier. But that is not what happened.

            Luza did not field it cleanly, and this bodycheck was almost a perfect example of a blind-side hit. Luza never knew what hit him.

            I’ve seen that same play called a penalty in the OHL many, many times. The difference, as I’ve mentioned, is that resulting injuries in international hockey often automatically bump up the severity of the penalty, as opposed to most NHL penalties. The exception is the 4 minute minor for drawing blood on a high stick, as opposed to the normal 2 minute minor.

            The IIHF rulebook is there for everybody to see. If the players haven’t read it and been instructed on what they should try to avoid, that fault lies with the coaching staff and Hockey Canada.

          • Hansen Hobie says:

            That hit in the OHL might be called two minutes for charging just because a referee is awestruck but the severity of the impact. And after the game, David Brach, or whoever, would review it and realize it’s completely clean and unfortunately a lesser skilled player kept his head down far too long.

            What I’m saying is the IIHF is a joke if there’s a suspension. I’m pissed that he was ejected but I can understand a referee is under a lot of pressure to make a call and he’s covering his butt by kicking out the Canadian player.

            Again, the Canadian player did absolutely nothing wrong on that hit. I hope to see 5 more exactly like it on Sunday.

          • Chris says:

            The last Storm game I was at saw Brock McGinn given a penalty for hitting a guy shoulder-to-shoulder along the boards, but the guy was hurt. The hit was right in front of me…the player knew McGinn was coming, the check was side to side (no raised arms or leaving the feet), but the player was injured and the ref called it.

            Injuries often result in penalty calls in junior hockey in Canada. The difference is that the severity is written right into the rule book in international hockey.

          • Hansen Hobie says:

            That’s an example of what I’m talking about. A referee’s going to call a penalty in that situation, some of the time, because he’s not 100% sure if it was clean at the time and because he’s got a coach and a team full of players screaming at him.

            There are plenty of occasions where officials see the hit after the game and second guess themselves or realize they made a mistake. Half the tripping calls in the game are dives and the referee calls a penalty cuz he isn’t sure in the split second of which the play occurred.

  16. Ghosts of the Forum says:

    At this point, I think I’m cheering for the season to be tanked and for us to have a really good shot at landing MacKinnon in the lottery.

  17. Ian Cobb says:

    Click onto the link below of our Mtl. Canadien Rookies at practice for next year!!
    Sorry, I could not get it to hi-light.

    It is actually an HP Printer & Evian Water commercial. But, there are only a few seconds which actually bring attention to the HP printer & Evian water. The bulk of the commercial is pure entertainment. And, IT IS AMAZING! I don’t know how they do this kind of stuff, but it is flawless. It is so perfectly done that I could not find one thing that would make you think it wasn’t real if you didn’t know any better. I love it!

    Click here: HP Printer Commercial – Evian Babies – Brand New Key – Widescreen 16:9 – YouTube


  18. commandant says:

    I agree with Chris, the purpose of body checking is to seperate man from puck… not to take someone’s head off, or break bones, seperate limbs etc….

    That said, finishing your check and hitting to hurt have long been ingrained in hockey culture. This is not a recent phenomena. 70s hockey was full of dirty hits and attempts to injure as well.

    Gordie Howe, Ted Lindsay, Maurice Richard, John Ferguson, Ken Reardon, Eddie Shore, Butch Bouchard, etc…. these guys had mean streaks in the 40s, 50s, and 60s as well.

    I don’t know how you get rid of that mentality, there will always be an on-ice advantage to intimidating and injuring opponents, and you will always have guys going for the Big Hit.

    But what you can do is reduce the numbers. Call the game according to the rule book… stiffer headshot penalties… equipment that isn’t armour… better education…. stronger supplemental discipline… all these things can be part of a multifaceted approach that takes away the really ugly stuff.

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Agreed 100%.

      I remember the Bruins – Habs playoffs of the 70s and 80s. B’s would always target a few Canadiens players (e.g. Chelios) from game one in order to intimidate.

      Hitting to hurt was even (un)officially sanctioned when Scott Stevens won the Conn Smythe in 2000 for doing a lot more than separating Eric Lindros from a puck.

      In the 80’s players used to be able to avoid getting hurt – in part because of the slower skating and less rigid body armour. Also you did not see as many direct head shots in those days. Even dirty players had some restraint.

      Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

    • Chris says:

      No question. The sport has always been plagued by violence, right back to its inception. And sadly, that tradition is often pointed to when anybody discusses changes to the rules to promote player safety.

      The sad thing is that I think the sport can be even better if we can step beyond the violence. Rugby has a ton of hitting, but the lack of equipment does give the players a little more respect for their fellow players. There will always be dirty plays and players, but people generally avoid hitting to hurt. They are just trying to stop their opponent.

      I don’t think we should take away the equipment from hockey…the game is too fast for these guys to have anything but the best equipment. But we have to find some way to change the mentality. People need to get back to playing the puck, not ignoring it.

      • commandant says:

        I think you can have equipment that protects, without it being hard shelled plastic.

        Just one part of a multi-faceted approach. I don’t think there is one answer to this problem.

        Go Habs Go!
        Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

        • Chris says:

          I would never, ever wear shin pads that lacked a hard plastic shell.

          With the composite sticks giving everybody 90-100 mile per hour slapshots and the ability of the puck to deflect easily, I would also be wearing hard plastic shelled elbow pads and even the chest protector. An argument could be made for the shoulder pads, but with the way players are expected to block shots, I wouldn’t want to give that up either.

          If you take the composite sticks out of the mix and go back to wood, then perhaps. But I think the cat is out of the bag and we’re not soon going to see the players ever agree to giving up any protective equipment.

          • commandant says:

            what if you had the hard plastic as the centre of the shoulder/elbow pad, but had something on top of it… like a foam or gel, so it wouldn’t make direct contact to the head of the other player.

            The way this stuff is right now, its like a weapon.

            Go Habs Go!
            Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

  19. commandant says:

    Nichuskin is an outstanding talent. However he recently signed a two year extension in the KHL (this season + 2 more) and this, more than anything else, is going to hurt his draft stock.

    One only needs to look at Slepsyshev to see a talented player (should have gone in the 20s last year on talent alone and no KHL factor) to see how teams are gonna treat these guys.

    With changes in a new CBA aimed at further lowering salaries, and the players percentage of HRR, the Russian factor will only get worse.

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

  20. wjc says:

    Looks like lockout/impasse is going to get solved, players will either except or lose season, it will be up to them.

    Players did very well last CBA and were happy with status quo. Owners were unhappy with CBA and needed change.

    Who do you think would have to give up some of the gravy (concessions) that is right, the players. A strong league is good for everyone, fans included. Just like baseball, basketball and football.

    The players will still be rich and getting richer, so don’t worry so much about them, they do not worry about you.

    Someone suggested Alabama as a new southern team. We will have to wait and see.

    Fans should worry about going to games if they can afford it and get a $200.00 ticket. They should worry about whether there is enough mustard and relish for their hot dogs.

    Fans should worry about whether the over priced beer is “cold” enough.

    Fans should not worry about players salaries, southern teams or who owns what. Let the players worry about their millions of dollars and do not worry about what the league/owners do with the money you spend on their product.

    When you buy something at Walmart, you do not get to tell Walmart what they can spend it on or where the next Walmart should be build.

    Safe driving and a happy new Year everyone!


  21. bwoar says:

    First: You guys are on fire this morning. The level of commenting & discussion seems much more civil compared to when the Habs are playing. Just a vibe I get reading this morning. Kudos!

    I just wanted to jump in and lend my voice to Chris’ when it comes to the purpose of bodychecking. The headhunter mentality that’s overtaken the idea of puck separation is a shame. I’m all for “tough hockey”, but the pro game has slid quite far down a slope so that today we’re seeing more & more “tough hockey with intent to injure”.

  22. Chuck says:

    If the players take this offer, then what will the owners have conceded over the last CBA?

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

  23. Habs64 says:

    @SunGarrioch My sources say owners have privately informed Bettman cancelling the season is not an acceptable option.

  24. Haborama says:

    I’m not sure what to make of Galchenyuk this game, sure he got an assist, but he looked pretty bad a t times and his ice time as that game went on reflected that.

    • Chris says:

      Don’t read anything into it.

      A big part of hockey is chemistry with your linemates, knowing where they are without looking and knowing what they are likely to do in various situations.

      In the World Juniors, most of these kids don’t play together enough to develop that chemistry, so the games become not too much more than All-Star games with huge hits thrown in.

      The defence and goalies are most often the ones that get a little hung out to dry, but even forwards can struggle to find their game.

      I think Malcolm Subban’s performance with the Belleville Bulls over the past two years is a much better indicator of his potential than his performance behind a team he doesn’t know. Similarly, Galchenyuk has demonstrated over the past 30 games what he can do. Taking him out of his element and throwing him on a team full of strangers mid-season will take a few games to adjust to, and unfortunately these kids don’t have that many games in many cases.

    • commandant says:

      I’m not sure his “ice time” was really cut.

      Seemed to me that at ES, Phil Housley just decided he was going to run four lines, come hell or high water, and went, Miller, Kuraly, Hartman, Trocheck in order every single time, unless he got a PP or PK to deal with.

      I saw Galchenyuk out on the first wave of every PP, and take a 2:00 shift at the end of the game (1 minute with his own line, 1 minute as the 6th guy with Miller’s line, with the goalie pulled).

      I just think this is poor coaching by Housley (this isn’t house league, little kid hockey where everyone gets equal ice time). Not necessarily anything he did. And he was one of the most dangerous American forwards today IMO.

      Go Habs Go!
      Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

  25. Propwash says:

    USA vs Russia was a really good game, man I love WJHC!

    “Access Forbidden” gettin’ ya down?
    Hold down Shift while clicking refresh.

  26. wjc says:

    Random thoughts:

    Impasse is probably over, owners threw a face saving “olive branch” to players.

    48 -50 game season will be an exciting sprint to playoffs.

    Canadiens will be better then expected and make playoffs.

    Gomez will make a comeback and fans will happy he still has a year left on his contract.

    NHL will continue to grow the league including southern states. Pheonix will stablilize and become profitable over time. Owner will use San Jose as his example (he was part of that ownership).

    Everyone will forget players greed and move forward and spend like drunken sailors like before. Same formula that was used before will be used again and be successful.

    Jenner hit was late and dirty hit.

    Happy New Year!


    • ZepFan2 says:

      “Everyone will forget players greed”

      Yes, the owners are just trying to get the game back. How dare those players not play during a league mandated lockout. They should accept any half offer that’s given to them. We also need more teams down South. I think Alabama should have a hockey team.


      Ka is a wheel.

      Fans Theme: “You’re Breaking my heart, You’re tearin’ it apart” – Harry Nilsson

      You’re breaking my heart

      • wjc says:

        Lockout, was while they negotiated. An agreement would have ended impasse. Offers were good offers. Beginning proposals were meant to get things started.

        You have to know the difference between a proposal and a final offer. Negotiations 101. Both sides have to negotiate, if they don’t you end up with an “impasse”.


    • Trisomy 21 says:

      World’s most dedicated troll.
      He posts his comments twice but won’t respond to responses. He only wants to get a reaction out of you.

      • Blondie says:

        It’s generally the same stream of consciousness every time, except this time he left out the bit about everybody knowing nothing about everything.

        It takes all kinds I guess.

        • wjc says:

          “the same stream of conscuiousness every time”, in other words my idea’s, thoughts are consistent…..well duh!

          “Everybody knowing nothing about everything. Let me re-word that for ya blonde. “Some posting about everything, as if they know everything and not allowing anything that does not completely agree with their point of view, about everything to be expressed”.


          • Blondie says:

            It’s a hockey forum where people express their opinions and people tend to stick to them until convinced otherwise, which doesn’t happen that often. That’s ok, it keeps the discussions vibrant.

            You have a tendency to talk down to others and give the impression that you, and you alone, know and understand what is actually going on. I tend to disagree.

      • wjc says:

        Do you even know what a “troll” is. Just look at your useless post, what does it say? Nothing, less then nothing.


  27. Haborama says:

    I dare say it: Galchenyuk looks like he’s been coasting most of this period…….

  28. Haborama says:

    what the hell just happened??? #nichushkin

    Seth Jones looked pathetic on that goal, if we were to be picking at 30th overall and he were to be available, I would rather we took our chances with someone else thank you very much……

  29. Blondie says:

    Wow, beautiful end-to-end rush.

  30. Timo says:

    Both Canada games 28 shots on goal for the opponent… and that’s by teams like Germany and Slovakia. Canada needs to tighten things up in the back. I understand penalties don’t help but then again… tighten things up. Both game penalties for the hits were BS, no question. I don’t mind though… it’s the stupid ones like those cause by having an opponent outwork you that suck.

    Who’s next – the russkies? (I still don;t like Subban Jr in the nets)

  31. Habs64 says:

    Hope for a short season cause next year could be shortened if we don’t get a deal now.

  32. Propwash says:

    Gally looks way better than Yakupov out there.

    “Access Forbidden” gettin’ ya down?
    Hold down Shift while clicking refresh.

  33. wjc says:

    Looks like movement on CBA talks, which means settlement is near.

    Players will accept, no playing around this time, or it is over.

    When Gomez begins his comeback you will be happy he has another year left.

    Players do not want this to go to courtroom. Lock out was legal,
    Players had the key to unlock the door also.

    Players are not victims, they made out quite well last CBA there is proof players made much more money then before

    Agreements were signed before new CBA, agents knew and players should have known, that a new CBA would be tied to new agreements. The arena custodians new for heavens sake.

    Bonus’s were written in to some agreements for this possibility.

    CBA’s are not signed forever for a reason, they sometimes need to be adjusted. Players were happy with the status quo, owners were not. Players did not want to open agreement up or negotiate to soon, so a lock out. Lock out prevented the strike being used as a weapon later.

    Phoenix will be a success, they will have stable ownership. He was part of San Jose franchise and they have done well.

    Ticket sales are only a part of package. Prices are established by supply and demand….look it up.

    Pay-per-view, merchandising, playoffs, television, sponsors, advertising are all much more important in the scheme of things. Tickets being important but further down the list then you might realize.

    In order for the league to start challenging other sports, baseball, football, basketball etc. they need southern states. The potential is there and the NHL knows how to market itself. Staying in Ontario where the market is already saturated would not work in the long run.

    Sorry to disappoint some of the doom and gloomers on here, but lockout/impasse is probably over and you will have a lot of meaningful games to watch.

    Canadiens will make the playoffs and be better some of you think.

    Just some random thoughts.

    Happy new year!


  34. Haborama says:

    did Gally get an assist on Trouba’s goal?

  35. accp says:

    I’m pretty sure they’re be no NHL Hockey for the remainder of the season. as fans we have to look at it this way. think of all the money you saved because of their greed.

    I feel sorry for all the fans and the people out of work

    HAPPY NEW YEAR to all

  36. Habs64 says:

    Bob McKenzie ‏@TSNBobMcKenzie

    In the interest of accuracy, @Eklund was first to report the NHL offer to NHLPA.

  37. Haborama says:

    I must say that I was disgusted by the Slovakian team and the European refs. The Slovaks have got to be the most pathetic bunch of diving, cowardly, dirty pukes i have ever seen, and the refs almost applauded them for it!!!

    The way they went after Schifle was sickening, more so the fact that they received no penalty’s for it!

    The Camara hit was totally clean, a hit like that will get you a standing ovation and a spot on a highlight reel in the CHL.

    The Lipon hit was borderline, but it looked really bad because the Slovak player wend down like an Italian Soccer player, worst embellishment I have ever seen.

    And re the discussion on the Jenner Isangulov incident from a year ago, Isangulov deserved much worse then a spear, he should have been beaten down, but Jenner was penalized because he speared him literally when the ref was two feet away, bad timing.

  38. Ron says:

    All news types are tweeting that the NHL has made new offer to the PA. Nothing official yet.

  39. Blondie says:

    Both teams seem to have a lot of jump. Canada’s going to have to be on their toes for the next couple of games.

  40. jols101 says:

    Constant parade to the penalty box for Team USA which means Galchenyuk is going to have his arse firmly planted to the bench. That sucks.

  41. Blondie says:

    That was a pretty efficient looking power play for Russia.

  42. HabinBurlington says:

    I didn’t watch the Canada vs. Slovakia game, nor have I seen the highlights, so I have no opinion on the hits being discussed. But based on reading the discussion, it appears the real issue is the philosophical difference of how the game has evolved at the Junior/NHL level in Canada versus how the game is viewed from the IIHF perspective.

    Here in Canada, it is clear to me that the game has gone away from utilizing bodychecking as a means to get the puck and is very much a part of the game as a means to slow down other teams, gain momentum in either zone and essentially be used as a way to intimidate.

    I don’t say this in a preaching from the soapbox way, but rather that is the way the game is being taught, coached and officiated at the Junior and Professional level here in Canada.

    I don’t agree with how far this has changed, but the reality is that the game has changed. It is up to Hockey Canada and the NHL to decide if they are going to continue this way or look at how the IIHF is officiating games.

    I don’t blame the Canadian players for doing what they do, as they are products of our system.

    Unfortunately, the NHL is a little more concerned with Greed issues than how the game is played currently.

  43. Chris says:

    While we are at discussing IIHF rules, the other one that often pops up and enrages North American hockey fans is the IIHF standard for boarding.

    520 – BOARDING

    a) A player who bodychecks, elbows, charges or trips an opponent in such a manner that it causes the opponent to be thrown violently into the boards, shall be assessed, at the discretion of the Referee, a:

    Minor penalty (2’)
    Major penalty + Automatic Game Misconduct penalty (5’+GM)
    Match penalty (MP)

    b) A player who injures his opponent as a result of boarding shall be assessed, at the discretion of the Referee a:

    Major penalty + Automatic Game Misconduct penalty (5’+GM)
    Match penalty (MP)

    I have put “or trip” in bold because this is the major difference between IIHF boarding and NHL boarding. The way it is interpreted is that if the player being checked ducks (something P.K. Subban is a master at) and causes the checker to go into the boards, the player being checked can actually be called for boarding. Ducking out of a bodycheck in international hockey near the boards is a big no-no, and one that most North American hockey fans aren’t aware of because we do not have a similar call in the CHL or NHL rules.

  44. Mondou6 says:

    What’s the best online link to follow the tournament? Something with standings, scores, and a schedule?

    ESPN has nothing that I can find.

  45. HabinBurlington says:

    Does anyone have a link to the USA vs. Russia game that is free?

    Good Morning everyone.

  46. HabFanSince72 says:

    For those of you who think these fantasy hockey games don’t meet even a generous definition of “News”, the second headline on the Gazoo’s “Breaking News” page is:

    “Montreal, Laval under snowfall warning

    Environment Canada has issued a snowfall warning for Montreal and Laval in light of the doozer of a storm that has hit the U.S. Midwest.”

    No it isn’t another storm. It’s from two days ago.

    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

  47. twilighthours says:

    Riga…. I have no idea how you can see the Lipon or Jenner hits as clean. No idea. If your kid was hit like that you’d be through he roof.

    The Camara hit… I don’t agree with the call, but as Chris posted, it’s not open to negotiation.

  48. Blondie says:

    Didn’t watch the game as I don’t have TSN but it’s nice to see the boys come back from a little adversity. It seems to be shaping up the way all our teams do in international play; a little slow to start and then getting smoother and more cohesive as the tournament goes along. I just hope they get it all together for the next two games. :)

    As for the calls, the first on Lipon was a no-brainer. The second, in light of WJC rules Chris helpfully provided, had to be called. It didn’t look intentional on the replay although he did travel a pretty good distance with a full head of steam, but intent is not the issue.

    Looking forward to seeing how the next two games go.

    Edit: Sweet pass by Ouellette on that third goal.

  49. Chris says:

    The Lipon hit was just flat out dirty and he deserved his match penalty. Elbow up, hit to the head. It is automatic in the IIHF and if these kids don’t know that than the coach has some explaining to do. The rule has been around for 10 years now.

    Camara was just the victim of unfortunate timing, but he’s still responsible. Again, the primary point of contact was the shoulders /chin/head because of the Slovak’s skating position. I’ve watched it in slow motion a number of times, and the chin gets hit first. It was absolutely not intentional, but in international hockey they are actually serious about concussions and intent is not important. As soon as the Slovakian player was clearly injured, Camara’s fate was sealed…it was going to be a match penalty under Rule 540 (b).

    If these guys want to finish the tournament with more than 2 or 3 forwards, they need to stop hitting high and stop hitting to hurt. It shouldn’t be hard, because those are both against the spirit of hockey as it should be played anyway. The goal is to remove the puck from the opposing player. Unfortunately, Canadian hockey has transferred the goal to be to remove the head from the opposing player or remove them from the game. I disagree strongly with McKenzie that Camara’s hit was a clean bodycheck; what would Camara do if the puck skipped the Slovakian player’s stick? He had already committed to absolutely obliterating the opponent and the puck was an afterthought.

    The fact that the puck is so clearly an afterthought in the majority of bodychecks indicates to me that we have a serious problem with intent in this sport.

    For those that are interested, here is the IIHF rule in question. There is no corresponding rule in the NHL, so most people just don’t understand this one because they don’t see it called.


    a) A player who directs a check or blow, with any part of his body, to the head and neck area of an opposing player or ”drives” or ”forces” the head of an opposing player into the protective glass on boards, shall be assessed, at the discretion of the Referee, a:

    Minor penalty + Automatic Misconduct penalty (2’+10’)


    Major penalty + Automatic Game Misconduct penalty (5’+GM)


    Match Penalty (MP)

    b) A player who injures an opponent as a result of checking to the head and neck area shall be assessed a

    Match Penalty (MP)

    c) Blows to the head area during a fight or altercation are covered and are to be penalized under Rule 528 Fisticuffs or Roughing.

    • DAVE. N says:

      Thanks for the rule clarification. I agree that it was unintentional, but clearly a blow to the head, and needed to be acted on immediately, or the game would have degenerated into retaliation and such.

      As for those that think Canada is getting the short end of a curved stick in the officiating, just take a look at how much stickwork is in the corners. This team is built on smaller ice surfaces and there is alot of cheating on the angles,trying to adjust.

      Also, Subban is not playing to his potential ,IMO. There is a definite weakness on the blocker side as well. Would it be wrong to sit him down for a game, and see how the team responds to another team mate getting a chance?

    • Cal says:

      Thanks, Chris, for posting the “hockey standard.”
      Canada will have to play with 10 forwards against the US because Jenner, Lipon and Camara were selfish.

  50. Riga Fraction says:

    Character building win there, anyone else notice how much they were targeting Schefile’s knees out there and basically got away with it, while we were getting thrown out left and right for clean hits?

    Well Subban is consistent at least. Both games 3 goals on 28 shots. He’s shut the door in the third periods both times, but had really slow starts in both games as well.
    3.00 GAA, .893 Save Percentage vs Germany and Slovakia. If Spott sticks with him vs the US and Russia, he’ll have to come out and start the way he’s been finishing the games.

    Bright side, we’ve found our scoring touch and our D has been pitching in with loads of offensive help to support our missing forwards while Spott awaits the day he finally gets a full roster of forwards to work with, as opposed to being ejected and suspended for clean hits.

  51. jols101 says:

    Lovin’ Shiefele. You Know.

  52. Riga Fraction says:

    Tough to get much of an assessment vs Germany, now we’ll (hopefully) get a good look at Gally vs some top notch talent when he faces his old teammate from Sarnia. I’d put the two of them out there against one another and let them see who’s best.

  53. Riga Fraction says:

    Great recovery in the second half of the game after the gongshow that was the first half of this one. Now to watch the Yanks and Russians go at it in a few hrs and see who we still have with the team for the game vs the US in a couple of days after the kangaroo court is done with us.

  54. jols101 says:

    Nice work Boys. Great game to gel. A little adversity will pull these kids together. 6-3 with 12 minutes left is not bad against a Team that took the Russians to OT.

    • Riga Fraction says:

      Russians were fortunate that first goal had a rather obvious offside missed at that. (Canada also had one such miss vs Germany as well, but it was far less of an impact on that game)

  55. Riga Fraction says:

    New day, same old crap. Two more clean hits, two more ridiculous game misconducts for being stronger than the other guy, two more sure-fire anti-Canadian Euro bias suspensions to handcuff us against the US and Russia with Jenner already out and Canada’s still clinging to their second best goalie making it an even bigger uphill climb for them. They’re not going to get by the next two teams playing uphill with the anti-Canada “officiating” unless they either smarten up and put Binnington in, or Subban sees his proctologist, gets his head removed and starts playing like himself again.

    Good to see the rest of the boys stepping it up when put behind the 8 ball to rally for the lead in the last half of the second, now gel together and make a run in the third guys. Sometimes us against the world is a good team builder.

    Edit; Even one of the on-ice officials told Camara that his hit was clean… guess he was out voted by the crooked ones?

  56. scavanau says:

    Live hockey, one of the benefits of being called in to work at 3am!

  57. Cal says:

    Lots of guts and hard work by Schiefele. With that charging hit by Camara and the head shot by Lipon, Canada will be down at least 1 forward and maybe 2 for the next game.
    Does Mackinnon get a chance now? He played with Drouin towards the end of the 2nd.

    • jols101 says:

      Schieflele very much showing grit and determination. He was knocked around a bit but kept on working hard. Good for him.

      Lipon definitely a bonehead hit but the Camara hit was just a hard, devastating hit that would make the highlight reals in the OHL or NHL with absolutely no penalty. IIHF rules often work against the bigger, stronger player and favor the weak.

      • Cal says:

        I have to disagree on the Camara hit. The purpose of a body check is to separate the puck from the player, not to knock him out and break bones. We’d be getting out the pitchforks if that was done to Mackinnon or Nugent-Hopkins. The IIHF protects its junior players, while the CHL doesn’t.

        • jols101 says:

          “the purpose of a body check is to separate the puck from the player”

          Really? I always thought it was to hurt, demoralize, intimidate and grind the opposition into the ground. Separating player from puck is the minimum a good body check should accomplish.

          Giving Camara 5 minutes and a game for charging when he clearly was gliding into the hit directly contradicts the definition of “charging”.
          It is not Camara’s fault that the Slovak player had his head up his ass and left himself defenseless. This is a Big Boy sport, Camara did what he was suppose to and finished his check. The result was unfortunate but this isn’t a game for the faint of heart.

  58. jols101 says:

    Hope that kid is alright. Camara is a freight train. He crushed that kid.

  59. Cal says:

    Great opening period…by the Slovakians. They outworked the Canadians and got rewarded. 11-5 in shots.
    Watching Canada against Germany score a lot and very easily in the 3rd period the other day, I got the feeling that against a good club Canada would be in deep doodoo.

    Too many individualistic efforts and being beaten to loose pucks = 2-0 Slovakia.

    And I got up early for this? :)

  60. savethepuck says:

    A very flat start by the Canadian kids and really bad timing for a 5 minute major. Better pull up their socks and not take these guys lightly.

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

  61. Harditya says:

    God.. 2-0 Slovakia

  62. jols101 says:

    Boys are looking a little sloppy early on. Slovaks play a very frustrating style.

  63. Harditya says:

    What on Earth happened there.. 1-0 Slovakia

  64. Ian Cobb says:

    SO who else is up this morning to watch this Canada Slovak junior game?? I must be nuts!

  65. kempie says:

    When does this fantasy CBA expire and, when it does, will it be fantasy Bettman vs. fantasy Fehr? I smell a fantasy work stoppage coming.

  66. Say Ash says:

    How much time do you guys seriously see Gally spending with the Habs next year, apart from the obvious ten-game sampler? What would a full year in the Hammer do for him?

    • Riga Fraction says:

      I’m not sure this Bettman fiasco will be over by next year yet. He’s out to break the union and he’s finally got someone on the other side that he can’t push around and the players (Hamrlik not included) seem to be fed up with his crud this time around and look as though they’re ready to call him on his crap rather than rolling over for him again this time around. Fool us once, fool us twice, the third time isn’t going to be so easy though.

  67. ari says:

    happy holidays to all,And about fantasy hockey,is just waste of effort.

  68. doogie says:

    Who came up with this fantasy game thing….juvenile or what, I’m embarrassed to read the headlines. Does anyone care if the Canadiens lost in OT for crying out loud? Jeez, I’m getting cranky.

  69. JohnBellyful says:

    I have this fantasy where a new thread opens and I end up being fifth to post a comment. In reality, of course, it’s a different story.

  70. ProHabs says:

    Fourth. Boooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!
    At least the fantasy hockey is being played and not locked out. Give these fantasy players a chance and you might enjoy it. Read the articles and try to appreciate the effort being put in by these fantasy players.

  71. Old Bald Bird says:

    Second, and I also have nothing to say about fantasy hockey — except that I never read those articles.

  72. Ncognito says:

    First and i have nothing to say about fantasy hockey

  73. Cal says:

    I guess the IIHF doesn’t have a hockey standard, then? 😉

  74. Chris says:

    Riga: A player does not bleed profusely from the nose from a hit to the shoulders. First point of contact is his face. TSN has got it up in slow motion on their website, and I watched it about 10 times before I posted. It starts at 1:10. I realize that shoulders aren’t part of the head (and thanks for the anatomy lesson), but was pointing out that the only place Camara could possibly make contact with first is the player’s head or the top of his shoulders. The Slovakian put himself in a terrible position, and Camara could not hold up because he had every intention of obliterating the player regardless. The best thing you could say about that hit was that it was going to be a blind-side hit as the player was not facing Camara until the last second. That is on the Slovak, as you have to keep your head up, but it is also on the checker to avoid injuring his opponents if we want to see these sports played with any notion of sportsmanship.

    I don’t disagree that the intent was a shoulder to shoulder or chest hit. But the face gets hit first because of his body position, and that is why Camara was booted.

    Disagree all you like with the rulebook, but the referees ultimately called that one correctly.

    Many of us have been calling for ANY incidental contact to the head to draw a penalty in the NHL to clean up the concussion scourge. That is precisely what the IIHF has done. I’m not going to be a hypocrite and criticize the rule that I’ve sought for the past decade.

  75. Chris says:

    Drop the nasty tone. It does not suit the discussion.

  76. Cal says:

    Cheap headhunting and attempts to injure is Bruins goon-type hockey. There’s nothing wrong with letting up a little when you have a player cold like that. The purpose of the check is to separate the puck carrier from the puck, not to kill him.

  77. Blondie says:

    He may have been “coasting” from a step over the blueline to the point of contact but he was moving at a pretty good clip all the same which only further illustrates how much time he had to wind up for it. Charging would have been an appropriate call under North American rules. Under the WJC rules the call that was made had to be made.

  78. twilighthours says:

    What are you arguing here? That the officiating is inconsistent, or that the Canadian hits were clean? Stay on point, man.

  79. Chris says:

    That was an awful hit by Isangulov, but unfortunately he did not actually make contact with the head. He caught Jenner on the front of the right shoulder.

    It was interference. It was charging. It was a blind-side hit. He jumped. It was EVERYTHING that a hockey bodycheck should not be. I would even argue that he WAS head-hunting, but missed.

    But the rulebook, if called properly, gives him two minutes.

    And be honest. The reason Russia got a 3 minute power play is because Jenner then speared Kuznetsov right in front of a linesman. Kuznetsov deserved a 10 minute unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. But a spear (along with kicking) is the biggest no-no in hockey…EVERYBODY knows that. You just can’t do it.

  80. HabFanSince72 says:

    I stopped reading after “Excuse me”.

    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

  81. Chris says:

    The point is to obtain the puck. Show me in that bodycheck where Camara was even looking at the puck.

    You can’t. That is the problem with your little diatribe. Nobody has a problem with hits that have a purpose of separating player from puck so you can get the puck. That one had one purpose, and one purpose only: to hurt the opponent. Now normally, we mean hurt in the “wearing down your opponent” kind of way. But we also don’t mind if we get hurt in the “opponent knocked out of the game, or perhaps having his career ended”.

    The hit Camara threw was probably clean by NHL standards. But it was a brutal play that could have ended the Slovakian kids career. That’s the kind of hit that can break a neck.

    If you live by the big, devastating bodycheck, as the management of Hockey Canada have been doing for the past few years with their junior teams, then you have to be willing to die by it when you get your timing off.

    Camara’s timing was off, and he hurt a player. McKenzie is reporting that the IIHF will not be suspending Camara, so the end result is fine for Canada.

    But just to point out, a hit like that would also get you thrown out in the OHL depending on the referees. You won’t get suspended, but the ejection prevents further fireworks, a primary job of the referees.

  82. jols101 says:

    With all due respect Chris, Riga can post with any tone that he wants to.

    So many on this site post with a pompous air of superiority, it is refreshing to hear from someone who enjoys a good physical game and realizes this is a tough sport and not a game played by pansies and bleeding heart pacifists.

  83. Chris says:

    jols101: I have a great deal of respect for Riga. Hence my request to drop the tone…it doesn’t serve him well.

    There is nothing wrong with having differing opinions. But when we start loading comments with terms like figure skating or, in your case, pansies and bleeding hearts, all you are going to do is get people ignoring you.

    It is unnecessarily confrontational. There are lots of people on this site that I don’t have much time for. Those people I just ignore.

    I’m sure that there are many that can’t stand me. I hope that those people will ignore me, too! :)

  84. HabinBurlington says:

    Yah, but they are charging, was hoping to not have to subscribe. Thanks though.

  85. twilighthours says:

    I’ll give you that the officiating is inconsistent (as it is in every league, because refereeing a hockey game is hard).

    You’re out to lunch on the Jenner and Lipon hits.

  86. twilighthours says:

    You don’t think the Jenner hit on that swede was an attempt to injure?

  87. Blondie says:

    I’d think that anyone looking for free access to a PPV telecast would already be aware of the potential for ifiness.

  88. Chris says:

    I guess we’re seeing the hit differently. I felt he got the shoulder on that one.

    I’ve stood right down at the board level at Memorial Cups and I go to junior games frequently (I’ll be at the Guelph Storm-Belleville Bulls game tonight, as it happens).

    If you think the Russians are the only ones delivering little shots to the gut, I suggest you go to more games. The worst player I’ve ever seen in junior for dirty little hits that don’t injure but that just infuriate the opposition was P.K. Subban. On the Storm, we’ve got Cody McNaughton who just can’t help himself around other people. Andrej Pedan, also of the Storm, is terrible for stickwork. The OHL is full of it.

    So I think you need to tone down the international tone of your rant. These are 18-20 year old kids, and kids of that age do really stupid things on the ice. All of them. Canadian, Russian, Slovak…nationality is irrelevant.

    By the way, the discipline committee consists of former NHL referee Dan Marouelli and former NCAA coach Jeff Sauer. You will notice that neither is European.

  89. twilighthours says:


  90. jols101 says:

    That is justice. Camara’s hit was a great hit with a bad result mostly due to the Slovak player putting himself in a vulnerable position.

    Lipon’s hit though was a clear elbow or forearm to the head and may result in a suspension, unfortunately.

  91. Chris says:

    They did not announce that there was a goof on the Camara call.

    They announced no supplemental discipline. I haven’t yet seen if that means that Camara misses the U.S. game, as a match penalty normally carries an automatic 1-game suspension under IIHF rules. If they rescind that, then we can say that the IIHF feel the referees goofed.

  92. Blondie says:

    Yeah, I’ve used it quite a bit in the past but this is the first time I had to download something to watch. That’s why I tried it out myself before suggesting it. :)

  93. Chris says:

    No, I absolutely knew that.

    But I think it is wrong. It has resulted in a culture where hitting the opponent is more important than the actual ball or the puck.

    Watch Andrei Markov or Nicklas Lidstrom play defence. They **never** threw massive bodychecks. It is not their mentality.

    What they do very, very well is get between the opposing player and the puck. They pinch players against the boards and get body position. The result is that the opposing player has nowhere to go, and Markov and Lidstrom often end up with the puck.

    Guys who go for the massive bodychecks (and this isn’t just Canadians…see Alexei Emelin or Nicklas Kronwall) are more spectacular, but they are also more prone to ending up out of position or out of the play.

    So my point was that a player going into a hit controlled is less likely to be left looking stupid than a guy who utterly commits, as Camara did. In Camara’s case, the opposing player had nowhere to go and so he clocked him.

    I would argue that the Slovakian that caught Scheifele was just as guilty of this mentality. He locked in for a huge hit, but Scheifele was too agile for him and skipped away. Unfortunately for both, that resulted in a knee-on-knee, which should have been penalized. I do not think it was intentional, but a huge hit runs the risk of penalties when the timing was off. You can’t have the benefit without the massive risk, and that is what I object too. Far too many people want to remove the risk from the play. If your timing is off and you hurt someone, you deserve the penalty. This is exactly what happened to Camara.

  94. Chris says:

    They do not automatically review every game misconduct. They automatically review every match penalty.

    I had to look (I wish TSN would report this stuff better), but neither Camara or Lipon was assessed the more serious match penalty. They were both assessed 5 minute major penalties and game misconducts.

    In the case of a game misconduct, the supplementary discipline committee decided whether any further discipline is warranted. They have clearly decided that Camara’s time lost was sufficient penalty, but Lipon’s deserves another look.

    So the referees actually gave the Canadians a break. I am surprised they did not give the match penalty that Camara would have deserved if they judged it to be contact to the head. By saying it was charging, they had the option of Major + Game Misconduct or Match Penalty due to the player’s injury. If they had rightly called it head contact, they would have no option but to call a Match Penalty, which carries the automatic one game suspension.

  95. Mustang says:

    R.F. You make Don Cherry sound like a moderate. :)

  96. Chris says:

    Just looked it up on the IIHF site, which was why it took a while.

    Match Penalty (these are denoted as 25 minute penalties) – automatic one game suspension, automatic review that can tack on additional games.

    Game Misconduct (denoted as separate 5 minute and 20 minute penalties) – no suspension, no automatic review, but the committee can take a look.

    The committee can also take a look at any play during any game, and have been known to hand out suspensions for plays that went unpenalized. Denmark’s Jannik Hansen (check from behind) and Russia’s Alexei Emelin (spearing) were both caught this way in last year’s World Championships.

  97. Blondie says:

    The sooner the roster spot and cap space are freed up the better.

  98. Chris says:

    But even hitting to hurt is wrong, as far as I’m concerned.

    Like anybody else, I get pretty pumped up when I see a huge hit by a player like Emelin or Subban. But when I go back and watch those same hits later, I think that they are terrible hockey plays because they take the defender out of the play as well.

    This is the problem with hitting to hurt…you’re no longer playing hockey. Hockey is about positioning, about scoring goals and preventing goals from being scored.

    Somehow, those fundamental aspects of the game have morphed into “finishing your check” and “wearing down your opponent”. A good bodycheck should see the player dispossessed of the puck, but also leave the checker in a position to carry on.

    A bad bodycheck takes both players out of the play, leaving more open ice if the opposing team gets the puck. And that is the crux of it…so often, the puck is an afterthought for the checking team that their opponents actually end up getting a nice chance out of it.

    The difference between a bad bodycheck and a reckless one is not always intent. Yes, there are headhunters out there (we just picked up one of the worst in Colby Armstrong, a player that I absolutely detest).

    But in many cases, good guys who never intended to injure their opponent do just that because of the violence of the collisions and the speed at which everything is occurring. Too many players skate around completely and utterly out of control, committing wildly to bodychecks that have great potential to get the fans out of their seats but are also just a split-second away from crippling an opponent.

    It comes down to respect. If you are hitting to hurt, you lack respect for you opponent. Perhaps not as egregiously as those that hit to injure, but the intent of bodily harm is there.

    There are players on every NHL roster that are there solely because they have that mentality, because they are willing to cross that line to hold down an NHL job. How much better would NHL hockey be if the players played hard, but also played honest?

    I’ve seen some absolute goons over the years, but I’ve also seen some honourable players who hit hard, but always hit clean. And when they screwed up, you could tell they felt bad immediately, knowing they crossed the line.

    I love P.K. Subban. I love Alexei Emelin. But I won’t be at all surprised if one of their overly exuberant hits ends up ending somebody’s career. I would even go so far as to say it is a question of when, not if, one of those two players’ hits has a devastating but completely unintended result. And that scares the heck out of my objective side, the side that gets buried when I watch the games. I never had that fear with Markov, or Lidstrom or Niedermayer. I never had that feeling with Gorges or Bouillon or Gill. But I definitely have it with Emelin and Subban.

    Lost in all the discussion about whether Camara deserved his penalty or not was the status of Patrik Luza, the player who was pretty obviously devastated by that hit. What does that say about us as hockey fans that Luza’s status has been a complete afterthought?

  99. Chuck says:

    Hitting with the intent hurt is the same as hitting with the intent to injure; the only difference being the severity of the injury and pain inflicted.

    The object of bodychecking is to separate the player from the puck. If you have anything else on your mind when you throw the hit, you’re not playing within the rules.

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

  100. bwoar says:

    Very well said and exactly what I’ve been thinking, and preaching to my hockey buds (some agree, some don’t.) I’m printing this comment to pass out from now on.

  101. frontenac1 says:

    @Chris. Agree. When I was coaching minor hockey we tried to drill into the kids heads to hit hard,hit clean and STAY in the play. The last part was always the hardest for them to learn. Saludos!

  102. Chris says:

    My rule of thumb is that you should always be making an attempt at the puck. This forces you to keep your stick on the ice (avoiding high sticks during hits, which can cause a lot damage). It also negates these late “finishing your check” hits that serve no real purpose.

    And most importantly, you can’t drive upwards (especially with your arms) during a hit if you are also trying to make a play at the puck, avoiding the elbows and shoulders to the chin that we so commonly see these days as players get their timing off by a fraction of a second.

    I don’t see it happening at the NHL level, but I think that any hit where a player isn’t at least making a half-hearted stab at the puck should be penalized in the lower divisions. This would force kids to learn how to hit properly.

  103. Chris says:

    Riga: Andrei Markov, Nicklas Lidstrom, Scott Niedermayer….all are guys who rarely put a shoulder into their opponent and always keep an eye on the puck.

    Yes, a superlative dangler like Datsyuk or Ovechkin or Kovalev will burn them once in a while. But they usually get multiple swats at the puck while the player is bearing down on them. Anybody who gets by them has earned their chance.

    The problem in the NHL is that too many guys who really don’t belong there in terms of their skill level make it because of their physical edge. These are most often the guys who get dangled, because they lack the talent and agility required to play a positional style of hockey.

    These are also the guys who get burned the most often, because even trying to play the man is risky and often exposes a passing or shooting lane that their opponent can exploit.

  104. commandant says:

    Once he was established as a solid D in the late 90s (after he got through his breaking into the league phase) Niedermayer was rarely paired with either Stevens or Pronger.

    Both New Jersey and Anaheim preferred to play their two best defenceman seperate so that they could have one of the two be on the ice almost every shift.

    Niedermayer mostly played with Beauchemin in Anaheim, while Stevens/Daneyko was the main pairing in Jersey (with Nieds getting a number of partners over the years).

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

  105. wjc says:

    “We”, you are more then one person?


  106. Blondie says:

    I think this philosophy of “making him think twice” about chasing loose pucks is a bit of a red herring. By and large players who think twice about chasing loose pucks don’t make it to the pros.

  107. Chris says:

    There is a big difference between trying to injure someone and having someone get injure accidentally from the point of view of intent.

    But from the point of view of the actual result, the difference between a hard hit that was intended to hurt but not injure and a hard hit that injures is often much less than half a second. And that isn’t a big difference at all.

    In our everyday life, intent is obviously considered. Nonetheless, there are penalties for negligent behaviour that results in injury despite a lack of intent: careless vs. reckless driving, murder/manslaughter vs. criminal negligence causing death, etc.

    Hockey is no different. The end result DOES matter. The IIHF has a lot of faults, but one thing I admire is that they are actually trying to do something about player safety. They tweak their rules continuously to try to protect the players.

    It sucks when our players fall foul of those rules, but the rules are there.

  108. Blondie says:

    I believe “we” would represent you and him. It takes more than one person to agree or disagree.

    Please don’t be intentionally dense. It’s tiresome.

  109. Blondie says:

    lol – you’re a little quicker on the keyboard than I am.

  110. Chris says:

    A bruise ended Cam Neely’s career. :)

    (As somebody still dealing with the remnants of a beautiful 12 cm hematoma “bruise” from a rather spectacular bicycle crash over four months ago, I have a ton more respect for what Neely went through. This thing is probably the worst injury I’ve ever had.)

  111. HabFanSince72 says:

    Yes but the Habs did it in a sporting way.

    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

  112. commandant says:

    Contracts are respected via IIHF’s latest ruling. You can’t sign the kid for 2 full seasons.

    Most Russian prospects who get drafted only have 1 additional year on their contract on draft day (though of course some will end up signing an extension). Having two additional years before you even get drafted is a bad sign.

    Go Habs Go!
    Check out Top Shelf Prospects, my Team by Team prospect reports

  113. 24 Cups says:

    My comments are based on what happened last lockout. Which I believe was the intent of the original message (and hence the discussion).

  114. Bill J says:

    No, he’s just dense… Nothing intentional about it.

    Go Habs Go!

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