Taking stock of fancy-skating P.J.

Recognize the guy behind the mask?

The NHL thinks Ron Francis was a better number 10 than Guy Lafleur (thanks, NightRyder).

• Pat Hickey talks to P.J. Stock about the Battle of the Blades: “You
get $25,000 for the charity of your choice just for participating and
$100,000 if you win,” Stock explained. “I talked it over with my wife
and we agreed it was a way to give something back. We’ve been fortunate
that our kids are healthy.”

Arpon Basu says the acquisition of Jeff Halpern may mean a lighter load for Tomas Plekanec. Arpon also suggests the likely forward lines this season.

And Mark C posts some interesting Jeff Halpern stats:

– Halpern had 47 blocked shots last season, which would have ranked him
3rd among Montreal forwards, behind only Pleks’ 63 and Moen’s 51 and 11
more blocked shots than Lapierre.

– Halpern averaged 2:24 of PK
time per game in Tampa last season, which would have ranked 2nd behind
only Pleks’ 2:44 among Montreal forwards.

– Halpern’s FO% of 51.6% would have lead Montreal.    

Shout-out to Watsatheo for this very loud Jeff Halpern compilation


TSN’s Fantasy projections. Highest Canadien is Scott Gomez at number 40.

Jean Charest promises Quebec will pay 45 per cent of the cost of a new Colisée. Yvon Pedneault approves.

Redesigned Capgeek. Canadiens have $778,273 to spend.

• James Mirtle Tweets: “I guess because I’m from B.C. originally I don’t quite understand the intense hatred for all things Leafs.” Maybe it’s because they invite thugs to training camp.

• SB Nation’s mock NHL expansion draft
Scott Gomez is picked third … by the Nordiques!  

 Stan Bowman gets a promotion.


  1. since1988 says:

    have you seen Armstrong’s stats compared to Boyd’s? it’s real easy to put him down

  2. Storm Man says:

    Cough Cough….. Alberta has nothing if oil drops OMG your kidding. You need to do some reading about Calgary and how many head offices of companys are in this city. As for high tech please don’t be silly.



    The main ingredient in stardom is the rest of the team.

  3. HabFanSince72 says:

    All you’ve got is oil. If the price of crude drops back to $50/gallon you have nothing.

    No culture. No high tech. Nothing.

  4. B says:

    Have you compared the production of Armstrong/McArthur and A.Kostitsyn/Pouliot last season? No question that I like the Habs over the Leafs, but it seems a curious gloat to put down 2 of their potential top 6 forwards like that when one could raise the same point about the Habs.

  5. Chorske says:

    OMG. OMG. OMG. A team in Quebec.

    As soon as I found out, I got cable, so I can watch RDS, so I can watch those dudes lose their shizzzzzit every time the Nouveau Nordiques draft a non-francophone. Or speak english during practice. Or hire a non-francophone assistant water boy. Mostly, I can’t wait for them to stop focusing on Montréal, Monzisse de Ville de Blokes, and turn their jaundiced eyes on the Nords. Or Le National. Or whatever.

    I hear Yvan Ponton is being considered for the head coaching job.

  6. crabvader says:

    Got no problem with them.

    Let’s just say we’re better off with them than Toronto is with their two first line centers… Bozak and Grabovski lolllll.

  7. mike g says:

    “They will contend for a playoff spot this year”….

    That has officially been named the City of Toronto’s slogan. It applies to the Leafs, Blue Jays, Raptors and Argos.

    And for years, they have not contended in all of those sports. What’s so different about this year?




    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

     I got AK at under 64.5 pts, with Triple X and Tom Nickle.

  8. pic1983 says:

    David Desharnais is 5’6″ and 170 lbs.  He has offensive flare, but hes not exactly a bottom six player at this point.  Eller is 6’0″, a first round draft choice, and 3 years younger than desharnais.  Also, even if desharnais should get the spot over eller, habs brass have to put Eller on the team to save face in terms of public relations.  However, even if we were talking about a top-6 opening, Eller would have to be abysmal at camp for desharnais to get the nod over him IMO.  Two 5’6″ players in our top 6 isnt ideal.  Im not saying we need a hulking 6’4″ behemoths like some people would suggest, but theres a huge difference between a 6′ player playing against guys who are 6’4″ and a player whos 5’6″ playing against 6’4″ defensemen.

  9. Chuck says:

    And when was the last time that the Laffs made the final?

  10. JD_ says:

    Niccolò di Bernardo dei Machiavelli (1469 – 1527) was many things, a true renaissance man, but he was most certainly not a buffoon, PK Sterban.

    I believe it was Mohandas Gandhi who once famously quipped, “Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is,” later revealin’ in his memoirs that by religion he meant pro hockey in Quebec.

  11. Mark C says:

    Try 14 points behind Montreal, that’s a lot in today’s NHL.

  12. pic1983 says:

    well played sir

  13. shootdapuck says:

    If you checked the source of the 8.5 billion transfer payment to Quebec maybe you would.

    That money doesn’t magically appear from the air!


    “The three stars as selected by Red Fisher of the Montreal Star:
    1st star: Henri Richard
    2nd Star: Doug Harvey
    3rd Star: Jacques Plante

    Final score Detroit Red Wings 5 Montreal Canadiens 3”

  14. Chuck says:

    Laffs won 9 fewer games than the Habs.

  15. Chuck says:

    If I was a Leaf fan and saw that list of forwards on paper, I’d slit my wrists.

  16. shootdapuck says:

    Gauthier must agree he beat you to it!



    “The three stars as selected by Red Fisher of the Montreal Star:
    1st star: Henri Richard
    2nd Star: Doug Harvey
    3rd Star: Jacques Plante

    Final score Detroit Red Wings 5 Montreal Canadiens 3”

  17. observer says:

    they will contend for a playoff spot this year. how far behind the habs were they last year after 82 games? 4 or 5 games behind? these teams split their 6 game series.

  18. shootdapuck says:

    double post


    “The three stars as selected by Red Fisher of the Montreal Star:
    1st star: Henri Richard
    2nd Star: Doug Harvey
    3rd Star: Jacques Plante

    Final score Detroit Red Wings 5 Montreal Canadiens 3”

  19. otter649 says:

    That’s why the ferret Ray Ferro has nice things to say about The Habs when TSN does Montreal games and he’s in studio or attempting to analyse the game in the arena at ice level……….

  20. observer says:

    a sumo wrestler sized goalie is needed. don’t care how slow he is.

  21. observer says:

    gill is a midget

  22. observer says:

    When we really need size on defense???????????? – – – – – – – have you ever watched the habs play? forget about reading their heights and weights- the one thing the habs have is a big tall defense actually the goalie too. it is upfront especially center and they have been criticized for years for the small forwards they assembled.

  23. G-Man says:

    Funnist Nam parody movie ever. These guys make fun of everything. And the comments feature is even funnier.
    Best scene was Jack Black’s stash being stolen by the bat.

  24. DAVE. N says:

    “If one penny from my tax money goes towards that arena, I’m moving to Vermont….”



          No space…Habs management  lives there…lol


  25. punkster says:

    Whadisay yesterday about political buffoonery? Huh? Whadisay? Huh?!?!?!


  26. observer says:

    you must not realize but habs havent even played in a stanley cup final in 17 going on 18 years next spring.

  27. tophab says:

    prospect dasharnais played 79 games including playoffs 37 goals 74 a 111 points had he play the full year might have won scoring race.lars eller played 70 games 18 goals 57 points.who should get the best shot to make the team?

  28. SeriousFan09 says:

    Narrowly beating up his second choice of a quote “We’re hoping not to be absolute horse**** this year and embarass the city, I mean honestly, when you’ve got Clark Macarthur and Colby Armstrong as viable Top-6 forwards on your team, you gotta start the BS early to make people feel better.”


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  29. observer says:

    good news! and gauthier can go back to them.

  30. Morenz7 says:

    Good point, and a fascinating comparison. I think size is often conflated with toughness, but they are two different things. Hal Gill skews the size numbers for us, but he plays a very withheld game for such a big guy (compared to, say, Andy Sutton or Chara). Hamrlik can be a punishing player, but gets tired because of his age. O’Byrne doesn’t see enough ice to exert much influence. If you look at Philly’s D, Pronger and Coburn both come to work in a bad mood, and both get lots of ice time.

    The better comparison may be Chicago, whose D is all about mobility—I’d love to think we could produce a poor man’s version of that. But like Philly, they had overall team toughness last year which I think allowed their skating defencemen to succeed, and gave the impression of a big blueline corps. Duncan Keith didn’t spend nearly as much time as Markov scrambling in his own zone, ducking hits and trying to contain aggressive forwards.

  31. observer says:

    habs always beat hartford when it counted.

  32. JD_ says:

    “You spin me right ‘round, baby
    Right ‘round like a record, baby
    Right ‘round, ‘round, ‘round
    You spin me right ‘round, baby
    Right ‘round like a record, baby
    Right ‘round, ‘round, ‘round”
    – Dead Or Alive

    * Charest has pledged $180M of taxpayers’ money for a new 18,000-seat arena in Quebec City. What with all the bruisin’ his image has recently been takin’, I have to say I’m shocked. Shocked! There’s no way Harper, who needs to materially up his seat count in the Province of Quebec ahead of any federal election, will blow his own load over the whole thing in the next few weeks. No way!

    * Top-ranked Edmonton Oilers prospect Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson, on plans to drop the Svensson when he enters the NHL, his #91 Oilers jersey adorned with only his maternal surname, Paajarvi, “It was too long. It’s just so much easier to just have Paajarvi.” Unconfirmed rumours have Magnus later addin’, “Besides, I have always deeply, deeply loathed and detested my father. I hope he chokes on his lutfisk when he hears the news.” No word yet from New York Rangers prospect, Mats Zuccarello-Aasen, on which parent he hates more.

    * Well, to be fair, Charest did say the facility would still be viable even in the absence of an NHL franchise and Stockwell Day did recently say that the feds are not puttin’ money towards an NHL franchise but, rather, a professional-calibre arena in the province’s capital. I mean they said this stuff, and they’re both elected officials, so it must be true.

    * The Oilers have announced that first-overall pick Taylor Hall will wear #4 when he reports to training camp on Friday. The last Oiler to carry that number on his jersey is club president Kevin Lowe. “I have no intention of speaking to him [Hall] any time soon. He’s gutless. This was an act of desperation by a rookie fighting to keep his job,” commented Loafs GM Brian Burke when informed of Hall’s new jersey number.

    * In a development completely, totally, and wholly unrelated to absolutely anything else that might be going on, rumours out of Quebec City have the new NHL franchise droppin’ the Quebec Nordiques moniker in favour of the followin’: The Quebec Voteforjeancharestandstephenharpers.

    * As per this, Pleks commentin’ to reporters after a training session this week in his hometown of Kladno, “Many of the guys, beginning with me, realized in the playoffs just what it’s like to get so close to our goal. You really can’t put a price on that. I’m sure all the players want to relive it.” What an outrage! I cannot believe a guy who’s just been handed a $30M contract wants to relive gettin’ close to winning the Stanley Cup. Someone put a call into Bertrand Raymond’s dimly-lit and somewhat damp basement, a-sap!

  33. punkster says:

    DOH! What was I thinking?


  34. Habsforever27 says:

    What do you guys think of the habs 2 first centers: Gomez and Plekanec?

    I think we have 2 incredible all-around centers, both very responsible defensively.

    Those 2 are the best first centers the Habs have had in years!

    Offensively, none of these guys are 90 points scorers but they both can wish to 

    finish the season with 70 points.

    This is a crazy analysis of the centers in the NHL:

     It is french:


    Those guys are doing great other articles like this one, check it out!

  35. observer says:

    TSN right now

    “It’s definitely a playoff team. Our goal going into the start of this year is to make the playoffs,” said Phaneuf. “Anything short of that is unacceptable. We did a lot of good things at the end of last year, played some really good hockey, and with the additions we made over the summer, our goal definitely is to make the playoffs.”

  36. likehoy says:

    what number is halpern going to wear? it seems as if he wore number 11 in all his stops in the NHL. Too bad SG11 is wearing it this year…so maybe halpern will take 91?

    halpern looks like he likes to use his slapshot. We don’t see that enough anymore, forwards going in and unleashing a wicked slapper. it’s all about the quick release these days.

    – I support Carey Price as the Number 1 Goalie!

  37. Mark C says:

    Thanks for adding that. Halpern isn’t a classic grinder, but he also isn’t a player who will shy away from making contact. A bottom six of: Moen, Eller, Max, Boyd, Pyatt, and Halpern while they won’t scare anyone, these two lines will be hell to play against. Not one soft, defensively weak player among them.

    Compare the above group to last season’s opening day bottom six of: D’Agostini, Max, Max-Pac, BGL, Moen, and Lats/Metro. There has been a vast upgrade in the past year.


  38. alestar says:

    Me too, but I could live with a “tie” on that one…

    XXIV…and counting

  39. mike g says:

    You know what, I’m gonna support Bettman from now on….


    Well, because he’s done all he can over the past decade or so to keep more teams out of Canada. And as long as he keeps doing that, there’s no risk my tax-dollars go towards building a new arena in Poutine Land.

    It might make sense for the game of hockey and the NHL to move a team to Quebec City, but I’m now totally against it.

    Talk to me about using our tax dollars to build hospitals, schools, roads, etc…and I’m there. But this crap about helping “Peladeau” or wtv his name is, I don’t wanna hear anything about it.

    Tell him to write a couple of cheques, sign them, and shut his mouth. He’s made tons of money, and will make much more. The least he can do is spend 10% of his worth in order to make hundreds of millions more.


    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

    I got AK at under 64.5 pts, with Triple X and Tom Nickle.

  40. alestar says:

    Nice work, joey!


    XXIV…and counting

  41. SeriousFan09 says:

    Burke does love his ‘character’ players.


    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu.

  42. Morenz7 says:

    Francis boring Lafleur exciting

  43. mike g says:

    The real reason why Burke signed him is because….

    I heard his whole family has Ford pickup trucks. And apparently, they just baught little Mikey Liambas a brand new F-350.

    So, the kid has tones of truculence. Because according to “Burke’s Dictionary”,  the definition of “truculence” is: one who owns many trucks.


    “These head movies make my eyes rain” -Simple Jack

     I got AK at under 64.5 pts, with Triple X and Tom Nickle.

  44. Rugger says:

    I love Einstienian Hockey, much easier to understand than Quantem Hockey where the one can know the location of the puck or the velocity but not both at the same time!

  45. Mark C says:

    I think that some of the young players are good, but based on their play last season, I don’t think any of the White, Max-Pac, and players of that ilk won or deserved a spot in Montreal, at least coming into camp. Now maybe one or two of these players will force the issue during camp, we’ll see. However IMO, none of these young players will have their development retarded by starting the year in Hamilton.

    Injuries and underperformance will take place, was just looking at the number of games played by Montreal forwards the past three seasons. One common theme stuck out, each year only 4-5 forwards played in 75 or more games. Adding a player, such as Halpren adds another lay of insulation to the downside of Montreal’s season.   


  46. SLONCOLD says:

    i don’t want them to have provincial money… habs built their arena with private funds quebec can do the same. no hand outs when peopel in quebec have to deal with crapy roads and surgery waits.

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