A loss that felt like a win


Everyone was very upbeat after the Canadiens’ second preseason loss.

And why not?

• Max Pacioretty and Josh Gorges showed no ill effects of their injuries

• 2011 first-round draft choice Nathan Beaulieu spent a sleepless night anticipating his first Bell Centre appearance, then played 27:15 – more than anyone on either team

• David Desharnais did a good, creative job centring Max-Pac and Brian Gionta

• Wee Brendan Gallagher packed three hits and three shots on goal into his 17 minutes

• P.K. partnered with Beaulieu and offering tantalizing visions of power-plays to come

• Playing against a close-to-complete-NHL Buffalo lineup, the Canadiens competed for 60 minutes.

Lots to like … including Pierre Obendrauf‘s photo of Max Pacioretty

AUDIO of Jacques Martin


  1. habsfan72 says:

    the habs played very well even tho they lost 3-1. Nathan Beaulieu played very well. He will make the roster.

  2. Thomas Le Fan says:

    Please HIO, it’s bad enough when we get unnecessary political comments in a hockey blog, as if EVERYONE votes NDP but can we avoid the Truther nonsense? Insulting to both sides of the political spectrum. This means you pmaraw. Talk hockey or STFU.

    • bleedhabs81 says:

      Or what? What if he doesn’t stick to just hockey… what if he doesn’t STFU? (really, your telling someone to shut up and using the F word to do so… your mother failed you).

      How about you just stick to posting about hockey. Actually, post what you want… I am guessing not many people stop and seriously read your posts.

    • Tony McLean says:


      You have two choices: Break Chara’s nose and win or grab your ankles and lose. There are no other choices. Make a choice.

  3. pat s says:

    just get ready for a long season, maybe some of you should also watch other exhibition games, players are crashing, banging, fighting and again no change with our system–its ok, i’m sure many of you will say they played hard and deserved the win so its ok we lost-there are teams in our conference that are going to once again smash us through the boards–based on these 2 games no change in philosophy or direction—-I am happy however that PAC has returned

  4. BJ says:

    Fun game to watch despite the loss. Better losing them now before it really starts. Beaulieu was excellent. He will hopefully be given a real good look in more pre-season games. If he does well and Markov is not ready maybe keeping him up for 9 games could be an option. I also liked Woywitka vs Dallas.

  5. Captain aHab says:

    I can’t see Beaulieu spending more than one year in Hamilton after finishing his Q requirements. Kid played awesome last night and was getting better as the game progressed. It’s like he accessed a part of his brain, or a chunk of his innate ability, that he hadn’t had to use before playing in the Q. His game suddenly adjusted to NHL speed.

    Can you imagine how stoked he must be this morning? If he goes back to the Q and plays at the speed he was playing last night, he will be a man amongst boys.

  6. rated_R says:

    Imagine the bulldogs next year. Gallagher, Kristo, Tinordi, Beaulieu, and maybe if Leblanc continues his development there. Habs will need to make some space for them after 2 seasons. This is a good problem to have.

  7. CharlieHodgeFan says:

    The Habs aren’t desperate on defence, so there is no need to bring Beaulieu along fast. He needs to learn and to grow, and he will. This kid will be something, if he’s brought along at a reasonable pace. Watching him play for the Habs is something exciting to look forward to.
    A few things jumped out at me last night – Pacioretty played with poise, and acts like a confident, solid star player. He hasn’t proven himself as a top line forward yet, but he looked like he’d overcome the injury and more. He had skill and swagger.
    Desharnais was more than solid. He’s fun to watch. He works.
    Gorges was just reliable. You watch him go and you expect him to do the right thing and to do it well. He’s not flashy, but he is oh so welcome back.
    Gallagher is very good.
    Budaj looked fine. I expect he’s going to matter, and he is a great addition. The habs had a serious weakness in net last year – Price was brilliant but there was no plan B. I’d say there is one now.
    Hamilton is going to be very good, and any call-ups during the year will be potential NHL regulars, as opposed to years ago when all we ever saw was marginal AHL talent. You sense an organization is being constructed – built -developed. There is so much more depth than in the sad old days.

  8. Un Canadien errant says:

    Another loss for the Canadiens after last night’s shootout loss, this one ending in a closer score of 3-1. Given that the Sabres scored an empty-netter in the last minute, this was a more evenly contested game than Monday night’s 6-3 result against the Dallas Stars, especially when considering the fact that the Sabres had 14 regular players in their lineup, compared to 9 for the Canadiens. The score isn’t the important consideration, especially this early in the pre-season, when the team’s intent is to allow young players an opportunity to showcase their talent instead of being as competitive as possible.

    PK Subban caught everyone’s eye with flashy skating and puck-handling, almost to excess in one viewer’s opinion. He seemed to more often than not choose the difficult or fancy play over the simple one, and the expectation here was that he would soon commit a blunder of bench-stapling proportion. Instead, he scored the Canadiens lone goal on a beautiful setup by another promising youngster. I wondered if he was trying to take too much on his shoulders, with so many regulars missing from the lineup. Let’s hope he’s only trying some moves out during the exhibition season, and he’ll tone it down during the regular season.

    Nathan Beaulieu put in an impressive performance, tallying an assist on the lone goal. He played the most minutes of any defenceman, five-on-five, on the power-play and the penalty kill. He showed remarkable poise for an 18 year old, rushing the puck and supporting the attack in the offensive zone, as well as making a couple of sweet long outlet passes that led directly to scoring chances. The Antichambre denizens were discussing the possibility of keeping him with the big club instead of sending him down to his junior team this season.

    Among the forwards, Max Pacioretty played a good game, getting good shots on goals. His centreman David Desharnais provided a lot of excitement, constantly being around the puck despite his reputation of not being a fast skater.

    The star of the night for this viewer was Brendan Gallagher. Another small player, Mr. Gallagher was reported to be creative and productive with the puck, but afflicted with the dreaded ‘small and slow’ tag when he was drafted. A strength and conditioning coach’s son, he has worked assiduously this last year and is now a quick and strong skater, as evidenced by his performance tonight. Whereas some of the other young Canadiens forwards showed heart but seemed a step behind the play (Philip DeSimone, Aaron Palushaj, Gabriel Dumont), Mr. Gallagher was a step ahead, creating room and opportunities with his stickhandling and mobility. It is obvious that he would benefit from another season in Junior, during which he could mature physically and hopefully play high-caliber competitive hockey during the World Junior tournament over Christmas, but it is tempting to think about keeping him in Montreal for at least the start of the season.

    How about it NHL? No fighting, just hockey?


  9. kungpowchicken says:

    Gallagher is a mini me Gionta….give this kid time and wammo, you got a player folks. Youth and speed wins no matter what Leaf fans say. Plus, it’s exciting. I love my Habs and continue to stick it out West here to all Canuck fans who have won 1 President’s Trophy and have never eaten a Lafleur’s hotdog with cheese. Yes, i am outnumbered in small town BC by a ratio of 100:1 and am the only local who has RDS (or even knows what it is), but i still have my habs flag on the car for all to see whether they like it or not. One local asked me if it was a Calgary Flames flag! Wow…. Stan Smyl was at a local hockey game and he was treated like Guy Lafleur…..wow…..bring on Paul Dipietro…now THAT’s hab history! Go Habs!!! Kungpowchicken loves the Habs! George loves his chicken (Seinfeld line…remember?)!

    • you are not alone out here on the Westcoast, being a Montreal Canadiens fan. I get bugged everytime the Habs play. (except when they beat the Canucks) I have a Canadiens shrine in one of my classrooms, with memorabilia from the sixties …I get booed all the time. RDS is the only sports channel to watch out here. I feel your pain living here. I generally keep my head down – especially after another preseason loss. Hockey fans here only look at the highlights on Sportsnet or TSN – So base their analysis there.

  10. Ayan_SB says:

    Gorges on Nathan Beaulieu: “This kid is going to be a superstar one day.”

    • j2w4habs25 says:

      i hope he can catch the french language pretty fast. (:

      Carey Price #31

      • Un Canadien errant says:

        In all seriousness, that would be great. Larry Robinson, Bob Gainey, Ken Dryden, Steve Shutt and Bobby Smith all spoke a smattering of French, which they worked hard to learn, they took lessons to supplement their high school French. They knew just enough to be interviewed in French in between periods on La Soirée du Hockey, but that meant the world to the fans. It was a sign of respect for those fans who buy tickets and Molson beers. There was no doubt that these guys were committed, they were not mercenaries counting down the days until they get to play elsewhere. Young Canadiens should invest a few hours in lessons and reap unbelievable rewards by doing so.

        How about it NHL? No fighting, just hockey?


    • Tony McLean says:

      Definitely looked natural, very relaxed. Disappointed nobody ran Myers though. And you you ever seen anybody take more hits than Gorges? He sets himself up worse than Svoboda and Brisebois put together!

      You have two choices: Break Chara’s nose and win or grab your ankles and lose. There are no other choices. Make a choice.

  11. sandrarainville says:

    There are times that even though you loses you felt like you win over something because you do what you need to do and show what you’ve got. Can’t wait for the regular season

  12. diehardhab says:

    Look at the Sabres first goal and thats why Bealieu will not play in the NHL this year. Don’t get me wrong I really like him and am excited to see him in 2-3 years but he needs to tighten up his defensive coverages and dominate in the Q and then the A before coming to the big club.

    The torch be yours to hold it high!

    • mbplekfan says:

      Saying that a kid straight out of junior and playing his first NHL preseason game isnt ready takes a lot of insight.

      Give your head a shake. A young kid in front of a partisan home crowd played an unbelievable game. Pull your head out of your posterior and then shut up.

      Beaulieu proved that he was more than worth the 1st round pick and then some. He is maybe half a year away from doing call up duty on an average team. Given our defensive depth he might actually play half a season in the A after junior.

      In 2 years he’ll be a regular NHL player. What I saw was an incredibly poised young kid, in front of a home crowd play almost 28 minutes against an almost NHL calibre team. All players make mistakes and you are grading him as if he were a veteran.

      • Chorske says:

        Two things. 1) I hate the expression “give your head a shake”. It’s obnoxious and rude. Generally, your post is unnecessarily obnoxious and rude…. 2) all the more so because you essentially say the exact same thing he says, only with more words. That really takes a lot of insight.


    • samTHEman says:

      He’s already dominated the Q for 2 years straight putting up 45 points per season. If he were returned to the Seadogs it would be his 4th season in junior. He belongs in Hamilton now Imo.

      • mbplekfan says:

        He is ineligible to play in Hamilton. Its NHL or Junior for one more year.

        He will probably make the WJC team and then rip up the last portion of his junior season. He might play NHL next year.

        He’s ahead of PK’s play at a similar age.

        • pmaraw says:

          im curious, why is he ineligible for the ahl? too young?

          • Un Canadien errant says:

            Rules governing transfers between Major Junior and NHL. An 18 year old drafted from Major Junior can either play in the NHL, or must be sent back to Junior. This is partly to support the CHL, their arenas would be empty if their young stars were all plucked off their rosters at 18 and sent to Binghampton or wherever.

            How about it NHL? No fighting, just hockey?


    • pmaraw says:

      not to mention put some meat on his bones. he looked really good out there tho and im stoked about this kid.

  13. MTLForever says:

    vids not working for me either

  14. Is it my computer or are these youtube vids not working?

  15. Chrisadiens says:

    Anyone see the Jody Shelly hit Darryl Boyce from behind? Milbury called it a little nudge from behind. The flyer fans loved it. Sadistic evil people man…

    Chrisadiens and HabFan10912, one of the few father son tandems on HIO.

    • Just saw the tsn video of the game. Not cool. Guy got a broken nose. Like he could have… I don’t know… not checked him!

      I’ve heard the argument that it’s a fast paced game, yet intentionally seeking it out… 🙁 There is a fine line between finishing your checks and checking a player who is vulnerable and not looking.

      Anyways, refs booted him out.

  16. Marc10 says:

    Spacek and Diaz are both looking good. That pretty much guarantees Beaulieu can enjoy a full year of prep before making the jump. With a talent like that coming up the ranks, PG has tons of options. Thanks to all the GMs who passed on the kid. We’re going to have an exceptional D for years to come and a great PP to boot.

  17. samTHEman says:

    Subban said it perfectly in regards to Beaulieu: “He’s exceptional and whether he’s back in Junior or up here he’ll have a great season”. This guy can play, very steady. Nervous in the 1st but that’s to be expected. Our future QB. Our future D looks sweet with Subban-Beaulieu-Tinordi-Gorges. Even better with Markov but let’s not get into that. Could he crack the team this year?

    • I don’t think Beaulieu has a chance to crack the team. The only time you really see a player in his range doing that is when the team D is atrocious (like Anaheim last year with Fowler). We have too many good NHL defenseman to have Beaulieu up here, possibly having him eat hot dogs in the press box.


      • The Dude says:

        Subban believe’s Beaulieu can crack the lineup this year and so do I…… The Kid has arrived and can’t fit back in the bottle! It’s good vibrations man and it looks like someone else’s is gonna go!

        • Well thing is the D looks like Markov, Subban, Spaceman, Gill, Georges, Yemelin already, with Diaz, Wowitka making a run for 7th. Even if they send Diaz to AHL, that’s 7 D men.

          I loved Beaulieu tonight, as did most. Maybe he can stay up to 9 games before he goes back to juniors?

          Oh yeah and Weber! So yeah, at least there is Depth on D now.

      • savethepuck says:

        Before tonight’s game, I thought there was not a chance in Hell he could make this team this year. I was very impressed with him though. How can anyone explain how his minutes increased as the game went on though, if it’s not the fact that the coaching staff was taking a serious look at him. He played half the 3rd period. Preseason is a time to assess your talent and I don’t think the coaches just said ” give the kid some icetime, he’s playing good, let him enjoy it”.

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

    • SeriousFan09 says:

      No, goes against the team philosophy, it’s unnecessary and he’s not prepared for it. He will play out his CHL commitments than play the AHL first.

      – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.
      SF09 on Twitter

  18. AK_PK_Usay says:

    sometimes you have to wonder what’s so exiting about watching people play a sport for ridiculous salaries and why we take so much pleasure in their exploits as if they were our own…

    could be because im exhausted after a long day, but after reflecting on what is pleasurable in life, we see a lot of superficial stuff in there.

    “working a job you hate to buy stuff you dont need” end quote.

    • Trisomy 21 says:

      Yeah when you look at it that way it’s pretty depressing. Damn you

    • Yeah, I think about that quite a bit actually. What do you prefer, watching a dangle and a shot top corner, or dangling and shooting it top corner?

      I can say this, we’ve come a long way since Roman times.

      There are three things I love.. the Creator, Music and Hockey. Women is number 4, ’cause to be honest, even though I’d be great at it, I don’t want to play house. I’d rather live like the Natives. Simple, clean, more connected to the natural ways of the ancients.

      Anyways, I digress… back to the hockey comment. Hockey was my first love, it allowed me to express myself physically and be creative within the parameters of the game. Granted, right now I am more interested in the Habs rather than going roller blading, yet once the ICE comes I’ll be out there all day, then watch the game at night.

      There is a lot going on in the world, just remember that there is always a choice to create something other than an inherently destructive universe like this one. And remember that feeling you had as a child.

    • Ayan_SB says:

      Ahh yes, a great quote from Fight Club.

  19. Renegade says:

    Really liking the way things are looking so far. Can’t wait for the first regular season game 🙂

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