There’s PLENTY of time to panic

stubbs

Hockey Inside/Out and Gazette columnist Dave Stubbs is filling in for Sports Illustrated’s Michael Farber with CJAD Radio-800 commentary weekday mornings at 7:55 a.m. ET, guesting with Abe Hefter. Follow the Canadiens at CJAD’s Habs page here.

Thursday, Stubbs spoke of four games to play for the Habs, who are five points up on ninth place. It’s not time to panic. Is it?

Listen here to his chat with Hefter and CJAD morning host Andrew Carter.

130 Comments

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  2. StevieM61 says:

    Bargains on cheap goods from China ! ! !
    Buy Now!
    We will not use your Yankee Imperialist running dog money to buy more weapons,
    We will buy Oprah shows online…
    Yes, that is it..That is my story and I am sticking to it

    Bullet holes in my mirrors . . . .

    • habsoul says:

      Capitalism at its ugliest, xiaoqinluiii. You should sit in a box and feel very ashamed. I am going to make it a point to NEVER buy anything you sell.

      Now go away so we can continue what we do best—fighting with each other.

  3. Keith says:

    Good stuff Dave. You are the steady voice of reason in a sometimes unreasonable (at least when it comes to the Habs) world. Hope this will be a regular gig for you and hope to see you on TSN’s The Reporter’s someday.

  4. gp52 says:

    i konw whats wrong. Hammerlik, subban, kostitsyn,moen and
    halpern were seen having drinks with some shady figures and
    oh yah Price slept with JM’s wife. Hows that for drama in the dressing room?

  5. rhino514 says:

    Anyone hear anything regarding Spacek and Pacioretty? Spacek is supposed to be back before te end of the season…Pacioretty they said maybe “for the playoffs”. Does that mean the beginning of the playoffs, or sometime during the playoffs? Isis actually possible for a hairline vertebrae fracture to heal that fast? The last guy who had something like that, Erik Cole, took close to 4 months to come back

    • _Habsoloutly_ says:

      Don’t know about Spacek, but for Pax, depending on some tests he took this week, he could start training in the gym on Saturday.

    • mb says:

      A non-displaced vertebrae fracture, itself, is actually no different from any other bone fracture. So if the fracture is simple and stable, it can heal quite fast. However, if the vertebrae (or any other bone) fracture is unstable or more important, it can take much longer. My guess is that Cole’s fracture was maybe more complex than Max’s, which made it a longer recovery (plus I don’t really know about Cole’s case, but if his vertebrae was displaced, the pronostic is much different).

      • DLHABSNUT65 says:

        Coles’ vertebrae was also non-displaced! He was injured in March and was back for the playoffs in May! Exact dates I can’t remember but roughly 2 months!

        • mb says:

          Well, I know there are many different types of fractures, from an incomplete fracture, which means there’s only a crack in the bone, to a comminutive fracture, which means the bone broke in three or more pieces. So, it’s only my guess, but it could be that Max’s fracture was the less “serious” of all types. There are also many things to take into consideration, like where exactly the bone was broken.

          That being said, I personally would prefer Max not coming back this season… Just let him fully recover and get in shape for next season.

          • StevieM61 says:

            I had a compound fracture of the femur and I was immobile for 5 months and on crutches for another 3 after that..never felt right for about 2 years.Still have a couple of big-ass calcium lumps that tend to throb but otherwise the leg functions good.
            Just my two cents . . .

            Bullet holes in my mirrors . . . .

          • mb says:

            Ouch… a compound fracture! That must have been a hell of an injury, the femur is not not exactly an easy bone to break, one of the largest in the body! This is for sure pretty much the worst fracture one could have. At least your leg recovered

          • StevieM61 says:

            Can still run like hell when playing ball . . .
            Pushing 50 now so thats about it.
            Funny thing, when I sit on a hard, wooden chair, I can feel the crappy-ass calcium lumps on the underside of my leg and I cannot feel comfortable , just “not right” doesn’t hurt, just wrong.

            P.S. Pins in my leg make metal detectors go off at airport security..
            Recipe for a strip search….

            Bullet holes in my mirrors . . . .

  6. habs001 says:

    having mara,sopel,hammer and gill in the line up at the same time must gives us one of the slowest d groups in the nhl..they also provide minimal support to our forwards when we need scoring..when trailing by 1-2 goals with 7 minutes to go gill still plays a reg shift..

  7. Mattyleg says:

    “SERVICE IS OUR LIFT!!!”

    What the flying fudge does that mean??

    “Quality is our Dignity”???

    That makes no sense!!!

    Balcony is our Cauliflower!
    Adolescence is our Honour!

    Humanity is depressing sometimes.

    (EDIT: oh, they got rid of the ad. Still, tho.)

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  8. Ian Cobb says:

    Come on! all of you.! It’s spring time,! eternal and all that good stuff.!

  9. habsindepth says:

    Just a quick comment – I’m tired of hearing after every game about how “this and that team” were just more desperate than the Habs. If habs can’t be desperate now, when will they be? When it’s the final game against the Leafs and if they don’t win they get eliminated?

    First it was Buffalo was more desperate than the Habs, then it was Boston was more desperate… now Carolina was more desperate. Isn’t it time to be desperate now?

    ===================================
    Web: http://www.habsindepth.com – For the Fanatics
    Twitter: @habsindepth
    Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/hidpage

    • HABarazzi says:

      The issue is not playing desperate hockey. It is playing hockey with URGENCY. There is a difference.

      You play desperate hockey when you are down 2-0 in a game… at least you should! ;)

      HABSolut HOCKEY
      O-LAI (6X)
      CHeers!
      @HABarazzi on Twitter

  10. larisalapointe says:

    A joke to cheer us up……Boone was talking about testicles recently…so what the heck.

    The testicles of a midget hurt and ached almost all the time. So he went to the doctor who told him to drop his pants to have a look.
    The doctor stood him up on the examining table. The doctor put one finger under his left testicle and told the midget to turn his head and cough, the usual method to check for a hernia.
    “Aha!” mumbled the doctor, and as he put his finger under the right testicle, he asked the midget to cough again. “Aha!” said the doctor once more, and reached for his surgical scissors.
    Snip-snip-snip-snip on the right side … then snip-snip-snip-snip on the left side.
    The midget was so scared he was afraid to look, but noted with Amazement that the snipping didn’t hurt.
    The doctor then told the midget to walk around the examining room to see if his testicles still hurt. The midget was absolutely delighted as he walked around and discovered his boys were no longer aching.
    The doctor said,” How does that feel now?”
    The midget replied, “Perfect Doc, and I didn’t even feel it. What did you do?”
    “I cut two inches off the top of your rubber boots.”

  11. Propwash says:

    That was the most insightful post about hockey EVAH!

  12. Timo says:

    I really would love to see Timmy Thomas’ numbers if he had to play behind Montreal’s D.

    • Mattyleg says:

      I’d really love to see TT’s numbers if Boston’s D was as depleted and shored up with farm players and replacements as Montreal’s.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Nahlsy says:

      You almost wish Price hadn’t been here this year because he had a contract dispute that lasted the entire season Dryden-style or something. They’re not going to win the Cup, and while it’s nice to make the playoffs, had if not been for Price this year, this club would have been a lock for a top 2 draft choice depending on how the draft lottery went. A kid like Landeskog would have looked fricken AWESOME on this team. A fair sized boy with great hands, leadership and likes to drop them here and there!

    • ed lopaz says:

      it was only a few weeks ago that many posters – and they know who they are – were suggesting that Boston’s defence was terrible.

      people around here have short memories.

      Boston came to Montreal and we ran them out of the building before the Chara hit.

      the game was 4-0 in our favour when that hit occurred.

      2 important changes on the D, I would suggest.

      1) play Subban and Gill as the #1 pair (not Hamrlik and the Wiz)

      2) play Weber instead of Sopel (especially against the smaller teams).

      our defence would improve with those changes in my opinion.

      Habs hockey is “smart” hockey – we play 5 man defence, not just 2 – we move up the ice as a 5 man unit, we back check with 5.

    • punkster says:

      On the other hand a Vezina is not a Stanley Cup. He’ll likely win it and deservedly so. But he’ll never kiss a Cup. Price, on the other hand, has a long career of possibilities ahead of him for that opportunity.

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      I would really love to see Timmy Thomas get a season ending groin injury.

      Call me petty.

  13. Nahlsy says:

    So the Habs entered the year with a world of panic surrounding their goalie (undue, but it was still there)

    They had their top 3 defencemen miss a combined total of close to 150 games, including 75 of those missed by their team’s best player.
    Their top forward missed a month as well and the rising star that carried them offensively when he got here went out for a month + as well.
    They have three forwards making 1/3 of their entire cap space going completely awol down the stretch offensively. Gomez has 1 goal in 35 games, Gionta something like 2 in 11 and Cammy with 1 in 9 or something like that going into last night.
    Their other projected top forwards, with the exception of Plekanec, just haven’t gotten the job done with AK46 being invisible far too often and Pouliot unable to hold a top line job.

    Their roster’s been stacked with a patchwork blueline that features several rookies, two aging veterans who are carrying way too much of the load for this point of their careers and pickups from the scrap heap aside from that to put a lineup on the ice. Their forwards have been made up of revolving doors from Hamilton and (as stated above) the guys on the top lines aren’t putting the pucks in the nets.

    They’re battling Colorado for a league worst PPs for vs PPs against in the -40 range.

    In spite of all of that, this team is sitting in a playoff spot and could have all but clinched last night with two weeks still to play. They have no business being anywhere near the playoffs, and should be fighting with Edmonton and Colorado after all of that.

    I find it odd that so many are calling for Martin’s head while I am of the opinion that he deserves the award for Coach of the year for the success they have had in the face of all this adversity.

    • punkster says:

      It’s still the old blame game on HI/O. That’s the one thing that hasn’t changed since the site morphed.

      But don’t expect much in the way of agreement today with your views. The natives are restless and the whiners and armchair coaches and GMs are on the warpath. Fire this guy, trade that guys, bench this one, play that one.

      We’re lucky to be in a playoff position, yes. I’m all for counting my blessings and looking forward to the start of the real season.

      ***Subbang Baby!!!***

      • Mattyleg says:

        Punky, this site has ALWAYS been about blame!!

        …just that the site changed just before we hit a slump.

        Poor li’l website, so misrepresented…

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • ed lopaz says:

        just wondering:

        when you call the posters “whiners and armchair coaches and GM’s”

        do you include Boone?

        because Boone’s posts are very similar in tone to the one’s I’m reading from the commentariat

        Habs hockey is “smart” hockey – we play 5 man defence, not just 2 – we move up the ice as a 5 man unit, we back check with 5.

        • punkster says:

          Well, if you whine you’re a whiner. Kind of simple really. Now the armchair coaching/GM thing in general is expected of most fans and is pretty common. It’s the self-righteous nature of the armchair statements that I’m jabbing. I do it too sometimes however too much of it feels like preaching, demanding and yes, whining.

          ***Subbang Baby!!!***

    • joshua94k says:

      Its nice to read some sensibility and not the CBC, TSN ideology that the team lacks size, toughness which many seem to jump on. This same team beat Washington and Pittsburgh to make the Conference Finals. It is clearly a case of a team having to compete with many key players injured and dealing with more penalties than powerplays.

      Right now they are without Josh Gorges, Andrei Markov, Jaroslav Spacek, Max Pacioretty, and injured Mike Cammalleri and Tomas Plekanec. That’s your starting lineup missing during the month of March where the Canadiens had an 8-7 record.

      Ask fans in Calgary and Toronto. They would appreciate it if their team battled on like the Canadiens.

      “It’s too much for one guy to shoulder. For us, we’re going to do it as a group. It’s about sharing that responsibility win or lose.” – Mike Cammalleri

    • Mattyleg says:

      Thanks Nahlsy, that’s a pretty good assessment.

      JM frustrates me sometimes, but there’s no ‘perfect’ coach in the league, or one that will please all the people all the time.

      Considering what we’ve been through, it’s GREAT to see people shitting on them from the great heights of their high horses.

      That being said, their recent play has been poor, poor, poor. Turn it around; look at what we’ve got going instead of focusing on what we’re not.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • LA Loyalist says:

      Yes we have severe injuries. Good thing you reminded us.

      Yes our 3 fancy forwards are AWOL. Does JM bear no responsibility for that? None? It’s HIS genius system. He’s the great veteran motivator.
      If he’s not responsible, then what the F is he here for?

      I can live with not winning due to lack of talent and injuries. What I cannot live with certain players mailing it in night after night like they work for Canada Post.

      Someone posted yesterday about Skrudland, Corson and McPhee. Give me 20 guys like that that bring it every night and we’ll be somewhere, even without superstar snipers. It’s the lack of passion and effort that makes me puke. Not everyone, but far too many.

      And of course JM has no responsibility for any of that.

    • huge_polar_bear says:

      You have used way too much logic for this site.

      I disagree about the coach of the year comment but aside from that I think you are bang on. The only problem I have with Martin is his lack of emotion on the bench and in interviews. I miss the good old days of Pat Burns throwing sticks/water bottles on the ice when the refs got it wrong…

      • LA Loyalist says:

        I loved Pat Burns, but I will admit the hell and fury thing can get tuned out in the long run. But what Burns did was make his players feel he cared about them and was sticking up for them.

        I doubt they get that from JM

  14. VancouverHab says:

    “…if Gionta, Cammalleri, Plekanec and Gomez don’t wake up.”

    I agree with this. And at last it’s not only Gomez getting the grief (and yes he was bad last night–though the Gazette writer here who said the first ‘Canes goal was Gomez ‘failing to corral the puck’ is an idiot.)

    ALL the top guns are failing. Before MaxPac was lost we had the Gomez-Gionta line putting up the numbers but NOTHING from the Pleks line.

    Now we have just plain nothing. Where’s the fault lie?

    • LA Loyalist says:

      Where’s the fault lie? Well, as usual, it’s complicated.

      1. Injuries, entirely legitimate
      2. Team is traumatized since the Chara hit, not the hit per se, but PG’s and JM’s utter lack of action to do anything to protect our talent, such as it is. G. Molson’s letter was great and may pay off down the road, but that does nothing to help the guys who have to go out on the ice right now.
      3. Lack of character and leadership. No one player has stood up and carried this team on his back. PK is trying, Cary is trying, but they are kids, still, really. It should be Gomez, Cammi and Gionta, the alleged captain, expensive veterans. They are mentally turtled, it’s obvious to anyone who isn’t using a white cane.
      4. JM. He’s the common element. How can anyone justify his inability to at least get a decent effort out of the team? Yeah we have terrible injuries, I’m not asking them to win the cup. I’m asking them to play with some freaking pride and dignity.

      Look at Pittsburgh, down Malkin and Sidney Crosby, they are not crying in their soup. Look at Ducks, without their star goalie and their back ups are Ellis who’s up and down like an elevator and Emery who had major surgery and is a known head-case (he’s 5-0, by the way) they are 8-2 or something.

      We’re not the only team with adversity, we’re just the only team with no leadership, on the ice, on the bench or upstairs.

      • Mr. Biter says:

        As I said after the Beatdown if we did not bring up someone to protect our skill players the hit on Pax would never have happened and yes someone’s head should role as i a humble fan saw it coming and the management did not. Either fools or believe in the tooth fairy. BTW what happento FagNewton?

        Mr. Biter

  15. CHsam says:

    This team has enough young talent and veterans (albeit small) to put together a good team effort. They’re just going through the motions of the system and boy is it ever obvious that they don’t enjoy playing for JM. I watched two periods before shutting it off and it looked like a turn-over festival and giveaway of our blueline. If this team wants to make noise in the playoffs even with all the injuries and replacements, they have to get rid of JM. I don’t know what’s with this dude, but he doesn’t get it and is sending out the wrong msg with benching kids like Eller and his attitude with PK. blech

    • Favorite Son says:

      You’re absolutely right, but it’s too late to make a coaching change now. Too close to the playoffs.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        Why? What’s the down side?

        We lose?

        We’re losing anyway.

        I’d rather have Kirk Muller play the kids lots of minutes and we lose – and they learn, then lose with veterans under JM while the kids are on the bench not learning squatty doodle.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      “is it ever obvious that they don’t enjoy playing for JM”

      I’m curious – how do you know this? I’m sure they don’t enjoy losing, but “not wanting to play for the coach” is a lazy sports journalist cliché.

      • CHsam says:

        I’m not a journalist.. and I do believe that it’s obvious they’ve quit on their coach. If you feel otherwise, fine, but there’s a serious lack of cohesion with the team on ice.. something’s up. And the troubling part is we’re heading into the playoff picture with it. Think what you will.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        Ok. Explain why they are playing like sh*t (and it’s not just injuries).

        Go ahead. Tell us.

  16. Propwash says:

    Yup, time to throw the team under the bus, even before we know whether or not the team makes the playoffs, seems to be the in thing to do.

  17. Favorite Son says:

    Anyone else notice during the timeout that Martin was barely raising his voice? I mean that was supposed to be a wake-up call but he was barely even speaking up. The players weren’t even looking at him…it seemed like Martin was mumbling to himself really. I don’t think it’s a crazy idea that some players are fed up with him as coach.

  18. Ian Cobb says:

    Well, its just another game that the better and more hungry team won.

    No excuses needed, but here is one, I think you all agree.
    Wiz, Soupel and Mara are doing their best, but they are poor substitutes for Markov, Gorges and Spacek. With Max out also, we are not the squad that we were hoping for.

    We will make the play offs and I think we will win the first round, but after that, it will depend on the old forum Gawds showing up.

    • WindsorHab-10 says:

      I love your optimism but sorry Ian, I can’t see it. Not with this bunch. As great as Price has been, I think JM rode him too much and he’s just out of gas. Not only from the gruelling schedule but all the pressures of playing in a city like Montreal. He’s definitely my MVP.

    • Favorite Son says:

      Ian, you’re a good guy, but we’re not winning the first round if Gionta, Cammalleri, Plekanec and Gomez don’t wake up.

    • Kooch7800 says:

      Ian you are a true fan and I salute you for that. If we face Philly in the first round there will only be two games I am afraid. That team is so deep in offence we dont’ have a shot with our current Defense and lack of offense.

      Too be honest with all of the injuries this team has battled through we are lucky to even be in the position we are.

      I would really like to see kids like DD get more ice time as he has earned it as he has the most points since the all star break. The kids are playing better and should get the ice time to show the vets you have to earn it. That is the only think I don’t like about JM is the kids get punished for one mistake and the vets can blew the game for you and it doesn’t matter.

      I also think Eller could be better served this year on the bulldogs to develop further. He will be a good player more defensive than offensive but I don’t think he is NHL ready yet and it has shown with his offensive numbers and constant dumb penalties.

      We need to do a better job with our development. Max Pat did better cause of Cunnyworth not JM.

  19. joshua94k says:

    Here is an excellent article on why PK Subban is the most valuable rookie during the play-offs.

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/647907-montreal-canadiens-why-subban-might-be-the-most-valuable-rookie-come-playoffs

    … he definitely has what it takes to elevate his performance, when it matters, above any other rookie in this year’s class. Safe to say, most of this season’s top rookies will not even be going to the dance this spring. The ones that will, may see limited roles as they already play on stacked teams.

    Playoffs are built on character, talent, and heart, and the package known as P.K Subban appears to hold all three.

    “It’s too much for one guy to shoulder. For us, we’re going to do it as a group. It’s about sharing that responsibility win or lose.” – Mike Cammalleri

    • ed lopaz says:

      the quality ice time Subban has given the Habs as a 21 year old d-man has been remarkable in my opinion.

      I know most posters will not like this, but here it goes.

      Martin is not coaching well.

      Here are a few examples:

      1) if you want to develop a young player like Eller, you must show confidence in him ESPECIALLY WHEN HE MAKES MISTAKES.
      its easy to throw Eller into the game when he’s outplaying your 3 other centers (as he was only 3 weeks ago).
      The challenge as a coach is to not waiver when Eller shows hes a rookie 21 year old.

      2) what happened to Weber? he was playing outstanding hockey at the trade deadline 1 month ago.
      yes the Habs added some bigger bodies on defence in Soppel and Mara,
      but Weber’s play (and development) deserved more playing time than he is now getting.
      Against big teams, sure you need to play Mara and Sopel.
      But against Carolina????
      Weber should have been in the lineup last night.

      3) Hamrlik and the Wiz are NOT A #1 NHL pairing on defence.

      Wiz is an offensive d-man who is a power play specialist. His defence is not up to the task of shutting down NHL #1 lines.

      Hamrlik – well, how to put this nicely without offending you guys?
      He also has shown some excellent offensive instincts this season,
      but his age and his slow feet (when pivoting or changing directions) can not defend against a #1 line in the NHL.

      When Markov got hurt, Martin announced that Hamrlik and Spacek were his # 1 pair.

      That was scary to watch.

      So, a few quick suggestions for Martin, if I may?

      1) let Eller play – whether he makes a mistake or not – he is a legit NHL centreman.

      2) play Weber against the teams that are not that physical.

      3) establish Gill and Subban as the shut down # 1 d-men, that should be playing against the #1 line

      Habs hockey is “smart” hockey – we play 5 man defence, not just 2 – we move up the ice as a 5 man unit, we back check with 5.

      • Dunboyne Mike says:

        Lots of insight, EL. Your analysis makes perfect sense — what prevents JM from seeing things the same way? What else might be going on that we can’t know about?
        Cheers

  20. matrags says:

    no guts no glory … patz lay unconsious and the team did nothing .. no band of brothers here …..

  21. J_P says:

    Off topic from the habs:

    Ryan Getzlaf’s houdini move from last night. Was it:

    a) from the bill Belichick school of “if you’re not cheating, you’re not trying”

    b) from the Thierry Henry school of poor sportsmanship (referencing when he knowingly passed the ball with his hand to his own teammate who than scored).

    c) just one of those wacky things that happened in the moment, no harm, no foul.

    *For anyone who didnt see it, the puck was on top of ray emery in the net, getzlaf casually gloved the puck, put it behind his back, and than casually dropped it in the crease, outside of the goal. The goal was DISALLOWED and after a lengthy review, even though its pretty evident that getzlaf gloved the puck once it was already in the net, the call on the ice was upheld.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Actually Henry handled in order to pass the ball to a teammate, who scored. You might be thinking of Maradona, a player, incidentally, who was much greater than the choker Thierry Henry. Not that it matters.

      Also, was the goal upheld? I thought it was disallowed.

      I would pick:

      d) the NHL would prefer Anaheim in the playoffs rather than a Canadian team.

      • Bugs says:

        Thanks, Sincey. I was about to tear my hair out snappin but you handled that expertly. Way more measured than I could ever get up to, that’s fersure.

        Chillin like MacMillan, potty-boy says he’s L. B. Potter, esq.

      • J_P says:

        Good catch. I meant to say it was called no goal on the ice by the official and was the call on the ice was upheld by video review.

  22. 24 Cups says:

    As I stated after last night’s game, it don’t come easy. With one exception, it’s been a hallmark of G&G’s teams.

    Regardless, it is what it is.

    My main concern with the next four games is the fact that three of them are on the road. That has been a major Achilles Heel for both the team and Carey Price. Surely to goodness, we can beat Ottawa and Toronto during the last two games of the regular season (I know, I know).

    On the plus side, is the fact the team will have a day off between every remaining game. That should be huge for our D and Price. We also have an advantage in the win column over Carolina and Buffalo in case we land up tied at the end of the schedule (I’m not sure how the new regulation win rule will impact on that point). Anyone have updated stats on that possibility?

    • smiler2729 says:

      Who’s G&G? Gomez & Gionta or Gainey & Gauthier?

      • 24 Cups says:

        Gainey and Gauthier. I use that term under the premise that Gauthier probably had some inlfuence when Gainey was GM just like Gainey still had some (indirect) input into what went on when Gauthier took over. They have likely been a team over the past few years, both in terms of the 1st and 2nd makeovers. I doubt that Gainey has as much involvement these days.

        I realize some people use the G&G term for Gomez and Gionta but in reality they have never really clicked here (as a duo) the way they did in Jersey. Looking back, it may have been a mistake to even think that it would be a given in terms of what they might bring to their new surroundings. Understandable, but still a mistake.

    • Favorite Son says:

      Tough games vs NJ, Chicago and Toronto. Plus Ottawa’s doing good lately.

      • 24 Cups says:

        FS – I hear you but if we can’t beat three teams that are out of the playoffs……

        The guys who are paid big coin need to step up. Plain and simple.

  23. SeriousFan09 says:

    Your Morning Check-in with the Kids:

    Louis Leblanc shorted a Shorthanded goal, which became the playoff series winning goal for the Montreal Juniors over the Halifax Mooseheads in a series they swept 4-0. Leblanc has 4 goals in 4 games, Phillippe Lefebvre has has 2 goals, 2 assists.

    Michael Bournival notched his 2nd game-winning goal in 4 games, he has 2 goals, 2 assists as well, the Shawinigan Cataractes lead PEI Rocket 3-1 in their series.

    Morgan Ellis’s season is over, the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles succumbed to the inevitably of a .300 hockey team facing the #1 junior team in the country in the Saint John Sea Dogs and were outscored 26-2 but to Ellis’s credit, he went only -4 in the series plus being on for 4 PPG against, but two of those were 5-on-3s.

    Brendan Gallagher took the Vancouver Giants as far as he could this season with a 91-point regular season output that included 44 goals. However the lack of depth on the Giants and Gallagher being a bit off due to a concussion didn’t help, they were swept by Carey Price’s old club the Tri-City Americans in 4 games. Gallagher scored two goals in the series. Hopefully the Giants will have more talent on board next season to compliment their MVP.

    Aaron Palushaj had his 3rd three-point game of the season to raise himself to a 50-point season in the AHL in 62 games, which matched his total GP last season but with an 11-goal, 7 assist improvement on last year’s stats.

    - I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.

    • Ian Cobb says:

      Robert,
      We have some nice looking offensive players on the farm. My main concern is that if Martin is still head coach, will he let them play their game or move most of them out in favour of more defensive players.

      He does not use his youth players with much patience. He just plays the hell out of the older boys.

    • notbigbird says:

      Any chance of Ellis or Gallagher joining the Dogs this season like Carey once did?

      • SeriousFan09 says:

        They’re a bit young for that, 18-year olds and later-round picks. Next season, wouldn’t be surprised if they’re signed to contracts but ATM, they’re still required to fill out their CHL commitments, where all drafted players out of Canada need to put in 4 years.

        - I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.

  24. observer says:

    If this was Lamorello’s team today – Martin would be fired! Might not help but STANDING PAT WITH MARTIN is a guarantee for a quick terrible ending.

    • HabFanSince72 says:

      Lamoriello’s team is a train wreck.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        We should have a train wreck like New Jersey, their record since Lemaire took over is far better than ours.

        That said, Devils have only 6 games left and thus are unlikely to make the playoffs.

        However they are getting Parise back (probably) on Saturday, and will very likely knock one or more teams out of the playoffs in the last week. And we get to play them : )

        Can’t wait to see JM out-coach Jacques Lemaire.

  25. joshua94k says:

    Tough times don’t last, tough men do…

    Cammalleri, Plekanec, Sopul, are playing hurt. They could easliy sit out until their injuries heal. But they want to play with pain. Cammalleri scored a goal that only a goal scorer can.

    With many injured defensemen, Hamrlik is defying age and playing solid hockey.

    PK Subban a rookie is asked to play the most minutes and against the other team’s best forwards. He is playing great with the most goals in the past few games.

    Carey Price has nerves made of steel. Can any goalie play under the constant pressure he has to face and rise to the occasion as he has?

    Scott Gomez may not have a single fan supporting him. But with the game is on the line, he will suprise everyone.

    They may struggle, they will play with pain, they will play without their best players, but they will persevere.

    You can never count the Montreal Canadiens out. Not in 1930, 44, 53, 65, 71, 86, 93, and not last year.

    “It’s too much for one guy to shoulder. For us, we’re going to do it as a group. It’s about sharing that responsibility win or lose.” – Mike Cammalleri

  26. 44har48 says:

    We need to settle down and I urge everyone to step back from the ledge. I’m not a believer in light switching your play, but there is no money on the table as of yet. Silly to think these games the past 2 weeks were not important and the Habs did not want to win them, but this is not the playoff “rotation” and minutes yet. We also have a goalie who has proven he is capable of carrying a bad team to a championship over the course of 28 games. See the World Championship and AHL Championship (with a bad AHL team). It’s not fair at all that I pin our hopes on a young goaltender, but he can do it.

  27. HabsoluteFan says:

    What we’re seeing right now is a bunch of guys with their own agenda. Nobody seems on the same page. What happened to this team ? Their not playing as a team anymore. Seems like everyone is trying to do too much to get this team going and it ends up appearing like nobody gives a sh*t. I had no problem with the effort in the 1st and much of the 2nd period. We got good chances but didnt cash in.
    I think this group stopped playing as a team in Boston. Something happened that night, either players we’re pissed nobody could step-up (or nobody was brought in at the deadline) and retaliate for Pacrioretty or the room got divided in 2 (players who believe in the system, and players who are sick and tired of JM).
    I would also question the game plan and the mental preparation of the players. I mean, game in Boston down 3-0 after one, game in NY down 5-0 after 1, game last night down 2-0 after one. Knowing how our team can’t seem to score, you would think the players would come out blazing to take the control of the game.
    Anyway, the sky isn’t falling but something has to be done with this bunch of players to get everyone on the same page and play as a team again.

    • TommyB says:

      Good point. This doesn’t look like the team that went to war for each other last spring. I agree…what happened??? Like you, I feel the Pacioretty thing gutted this team, but I don’t know why. None of us will ever know, but there could be several reasons why the Pacioretty thing killed this team. It could be that they were prepared to go into Boston and go to war with the B’s (I don’t mean on the scoreboard), but they were held back or threatened against any retaliation, either by their coach and management, or the league officials. Maybe it was just the astonishment of the league’s inaction with regards to Chara. We’ll never know, but it sure does look as though that incident has damaged this team, mentally.

      Troy Crowder, former Devils tough guy, said on TSN’s Off The Record about a week ago that he would have come off the bench and went after Chara or someone else had he been playing. He said he would have still done it in spite of the fine and suspension he would have recieved. He felt that would have been his job.

      Well, there are no Troy Crowders on the Habs roster. The closest thing to it was Laraque, and you know he wasn’t going to come off the bench if he was in the lineup. So with no policeman on the bench, and nothing from the league in the way of punishment, or to deter any others from taking runs at the Habs players, it is not unimaginable that they could have just said “Wtf, there’s no protection. There’s no respect from players today. Why bother?”. Seems extreme and unlikely, but something has changed since then.

  28. arcosenate says:

    Judging by the schedule and the state of affairs on the ice, this is going to end in a possible nightmare in Toronto again. We should be home and dry by now but the complete inability to raise their level of play is costing the Habs. Every team they play will have a reason to beat the Habs, we don’t seem to have discovered a reason to beat them as of yet. You can’t turn in stinker after stinker and expect that the rot isn’t going to take hold permanently. Anyway, I was not really into any excitement in Toronto for the last game of the season, but I fear it will come down to that.

  29. HabFanSince72 says:

    The real problem is not size and it’s not Martin (directly at any rate).

    The problem has been trying to build through free agency while letting go a lot of young players to develop elsewhere.

    In the cap era you cannot do away with development.

    Everyone talks about Gomez’ cap hit (rightly so) but playing Sopel instead of Picard or Weber is costing us $2M in cap space too.

    You need to go with youth. Play them and let them learn from their errors. Don’t punish them every time they make a mistake. Don’t trade them for nothing because they have “attitude problems”.

    • Jim Edson says:

      The biggest problem is drafting players ex USHL and who knows where else instead of the WHL and OHL.

      These leagues produce players who are trained and groomed to play the tough NHL game almost immediately or within a year or so of being drafted!

      Picard and Webber are not the answer by any means!

      Picard is a panic waiting to happen and Webber is MAB without the shot!

      …..My empire is crumbling, my international sponsors are deserting me, my authority is questioned, I am held in contempt wherever I go.

      Who am I: Mohamar Ghadaffi or Gary Bettman.

      • observer says:

        picard is here only because of his racial heritage. webber sure looked good in the olympics for switzerland. he will become just another who gainey/gauthier have been made a fool of when habs finally trade him for nothing.

        is everyone blind? gauthier has done this his entire career he traded away selanne, kariya, demitra his partner gainey said they did everything here together. 30 years in nhl business and not once in his entire career has a team that gauthier was with that year got to even play in the stanley cup finals.

        how does such a man with such a worthless pedigree get the gm’s job of the most respected franchise in hockey?

        • The Cat says:

          To be fair, I wouldnt hold him responsible for the first 10 years, he was just a scout for the Nords. So 20 years would be fair. On wikipedia:

          After the 1997–98 season he left his contract (Ottawa) early, citing family issues, saying he would take time off to explore life away from hockey. Seventeen days later he was re-hired by the Ducks where he served as president and general manager. He was fired in 2002 after Anaheim missed the playoffs for three consecutive seasons.

          [Disclaimer]: I’m a hockey fan. I care about the habs, but probably not as much as you.

        • HabFanSince72 says:

          “picard is here only because of his racial heritage”

          And why are you here?

          Seriously.

    • observer says:

      they were forced by their own incompetance of not drafting and developing young players along with not getting the most out of themwhen they had them only to see those players develop elsewhere for superior managed/coached teams after these 2 oldsters traded them away for nothing – grabovski, dagostini, ribeiro, latendresse, s kostitsyn, obyrnne, hainsey the worst and first blunder by these TWO IDIOT GMs here. then trade away all those #2 picks and a #1 but i correct you it was not done to build thru free agency as they let all those acquired months later – lang, schneider, moore, tanguay, wiz soon.

    • The Cat says:

      The problem could be the system. Is the system being used to compensate for the slow d-men or was it implemented cause the habs couldnt risk to have Price fall flat on his face? At any rate the system comes at the expense of the forwards.

      [Disclaimer]: I’m a hockey fan. I care about the habs, but probably not as much as you.

    • Favorite Son says:

      No, the real problem is the overpaid players we have who aren’t scoring: Gionta, Cammalleri, Plekanec and Gomez who’s not helping. The team needs these four guys to perform or else they’re finished. Because Price will not do miracles.

    • smiler2729 says:

      Picard? Man, he’s been a 7th defenceman in this league for about six teams over the last decade!

      Weber? Sure, but honestly, how many of you could stomach watching a team of youth developping at the NHL level? Edmonton’s doing it and it’s a long process.

      I don’t think Habs fans could put up with a team that lines up like this:
      Pacioretty, Plekanec, Maxwell
      D’Agostini, Desharnais, White
      Stewart, Eller, Chipchura
      Higgins, Lapierre, Leblanc

      McDonagh, Subban,
      Weber, Markov,
      Carle, Gorges

      Price
      Desjardins

      You need veterans to balance it out and actually win a couple of games, we forget that this team does have 89 pts.

      Slumps suck. Gutless teams suck more.

    • habsnyc says:

      that is an excellent point. if the Habs just kept all their drafted players, the team would be bigger, younger and have significant cap space. it might not be better, but it would not be worse.

      regretably, management confuses churn with progress.

      10 years ago this was an undersized injury prone team that could go only as far as a streaky goalie could take them. today, they are the same thing at over 2x the salary.

  30. newbrunswick troy says:

    Ok i,ll say what we all don,t want to hear:
    This is a team thats somewhat broken, or at least missing VERY IMPORTANT PIECES OF THE PUZZLE…and ever since the beatdown in beantown, the players now feal it as well.
    For once the players are all now believing what all the PUNDITS have been saying all along…”this teams to small and not aggresive enough to compete long term” and now it shows with the top forwards playing hurt, the 8million dollar man not being able to figure his game out, and now a goalie who has maybe just maybe backstopped this team for a few to many games….and to make matters worse they have no tallent pool to draw from in the minors!!!!
    My take is for P.G to do some severe tweeking in the offseason..Gainey meant well buiding this team on speed and finesse but managment now must see it isn,t a formula that works in march..No harm no faul just start by correcting the problem at the grass roots..( Start drafting power players…not 5ft8″ players who filled the net in junior)

  31. apokai says:

    I wonder if Price will say to the Press “Relax, chill out…”…

  32. adamkennelly says:

    Habs are tired of Martin….tired of not having any muscle on the team to protect their skilled players, tired of being punked all the time..the pax incident was icing on the cake..their lack of response in the next Bruins game clear message that team is fed up with the coach and his lack of addressing the teams need for toughness. When absolutely everyone says the team is too small…maybe it’s cause it’s true.

    • huge_polar_bear says:

      The only problem is teams around the NHL also realize how important it is to have players with size that can actually play hockey. Not the ones that just sit on the end of the bench and are sent out for 4 minutes to rack up more penalty minutes them playing time. Sure we may be able to trade for some 3rd/4th line size but to get size on the top 2 lines that will have to come via the draft, I think… slow and long process to develop proper power forwards.

      I hope I’m wrong….

      • adamkennelly says:

        Very true but….if the Habs had some real muscle on their 3rd and 4th lines you create and environment in which the smaller guys have a better chance of succeeding….it’s fact..if it wasn’t then why would literally 100% of teams have more muscle than the Habs..Ryan White is prolly the toughest player on the team but about 30 lbs too small..opponents do not respect this team…even in our building.

  33. HabFanSince72 says:

    Oh well. Life goes on.

    • StevieRay says:

      EXACTLY !! It was a pretty good run .. but ” we are what we are “.. undersized up front ..slow D..star goalie ..nothing behind the bench or in the front office …we best get used to things as these huge contracts for the wee ones will burden us for 3 more years ..at least !
      And besides …what’s wrong with golf in the spring ..I know I can’t wait !

  34. GoalieT says:

    Deep down inside, despite all my positive mojo leading up to game time last night, I could sense disruption on the horizon. Carolina was/is desperate. And, while we should have been also (seeing as there are NO guarantees for us), we just didn’t match their level of ‘play-off panic’.
    It seems that, lately, every game has a point where I pull my hair, squeeze my eyes shut, and gnash my teeth. Yesterday, that point was the third Carolina goal. Hal Gill had an opponent in front of the net. Hear that? IN…FRONT…OF…THE…NET!!! Carey saw nothing. Other teams are doing this, and they’re effective. Why is it that WE can’t see that??? It appears as though the only guys that seem to sort of get it are the little guys. Gionta does it when he gets the chance. But Desharnais? Maybe it’s just me, but he seems to be near the net a LOT! But he’s always 3 feet off to the side. “Sorry, Mr. Goalie. I didn’t know I was in your way. I apologize. I’ll just stand over here and let you do your thing.” I know you’re small and all, David. But for the love of Pete, get in front and stay in front! ANYTHING helps!

    I know that the gamut of emotions I go through on ‘game day’ would be enough to put any weaker fan out of commission, and to tell you the truth, I wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s at times like these, where we all get our healthy hate-on for things that don’t go right, that makes us the fans that we are.

    While on the surface I can’t stand ANY of this, it’s deep down inside that I wouldn’t change it for anything. I’d hate to know what my life would be like without any of this!

    With that said…….bring me the damn Devils!

    Ultimate Die-Hard Fan Since 1986.

    T.

  35. huge_polar_bear says:

    Hello HIO,

    What happened to thumbs up / down? Is this permanent or is it beeing tweaked to maybe be linked to one’s log in?

    I know it had mixed reviews but there are ways to make it work.

  36. Bugs says:

    Rest of the rest of the team has to play perfectly too, Dean.

    Chillin like MacMillan, potty-boy says he’s L. B. Potter, esq.

  37. Kooch7800 says:

    The crazy part is last season Markov called him out for his intensity level and this year he is our most intense player.

    Markov should be the captain of this team in my opinion. I like Gio but he still doesn’t strike me as a captain

    The veterans on offense are what is hurting us. They are not playing the same system they were earlier in the year.

  38. Timo says:

    … a different way to look at the hit. Hopefully someone up there (Molson?) takes a note of that. Blowing up the mess has to start with JM. No point to try rebuilding the team with the same people who built this mess to begin with.

  39. Mattyleg says:

    Heh heh.
    I love how being in 6th place is an ‘epic failure.’
    Granted, we might not hang on to it, but considering the ‘team’ you’re talking about, most of the players are (or have been) injured.
    Cammi and Pleks are not playing 100%, and I’m pretty sure they’re walking wounded. You know the other injuries.

    But why let reason get in the way of blind defeatism, eh?

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

  40. J_P says:

    Considering the amount of long-term, unmoveable contracts the habs currently have, blowing up the team is really difficult. I would like to see Jacques Martin replaced before blowing up the team. The effort levels and consistency just arent there night in and night out, and I have to believe that another coach can get more out of this team. At least in the short-term until some of those huge contracts expire, and some of our prospects start to make the jump.

  41. Mr. Biter says:

    We blew up the team 2 years ago and got to the Eastern finals. Without all the injuries we have had this year we would probably be in 1st or 2nd overall (and ahead of the bruins) and off years from some of our top scorers (Cammy) and Gomer has not helped. Lets see what the playoffs bring before we blow up something good and I realize some players will go in the off season PG has some major decisions (Markov & Georges) but to get so far with a patch work line up some credit should go to JM ( I don’t like his boring system) he and the available players have done a good job. It all started with the “beatdown” and our refusal to bring up the beef back in Montreal where Pax got hurt (someone has to take the heat for that). Since then we have been treading water and i have had too much to drink.

    Mr. Biter

  42. LA Loyalist says:

    It’s not “blind defeatism” to have standards.

    This is The Montreal Canadiens, not some po-dunk southern expansion team that is happy to sell some beer and get some butts in the seats.

    If 6th place is good enough for you, you are probably ok with ugly women, american cars and Regie box wine, too. Must be nice to be so easy to please.


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