Photographed in the cheap(er) seats
We’re happy today to introduce you today to Chris Aung-Thwin, whose regular new blog, View From The Blues, will bring you a fan’s perspective of the Canadiens and their roller-coaster ride toward the playoffs.
Of course, we feature Mike Boone’s blog before, during and after every Canadiens game. Dave Stubbs and Kevin Mio keep you up to date with original content and links to Habs news elsewhere, and The Gazette’s Pat Hickey joins us regularly for our weekly round-table PuckCast.
Chris now joins us with the eye of a fan. You’re welcome to agree, or not, with his views in the form of the comments you’ve never been shy to express. We welcome him to our roster.
A little about Chris, from his own keyboard:
I recently graduated from McGill, majoring in both Psychology and History. I actually started out at Concordia in English Literature, but when I had the opportunity to transfer, I figured I couldn’t pass up the chance.
McGill has a great reputation for its Psych program and I developed a keen interest in the subject after having worked with the mentally handicapped for over four years. I worked as a supervisor at a government center, where our goal was to be able to train our clients in both work and social skills, hoping that they would one day be able to integrate into mainstream society.
I’ve held a few other jobs that also don’t appear on CVs too often, including building a log cabin as a carpenter’s assistant, and working as a mate on a small fishing boat off of Cape Cod.
I’m a country boy at heart, having spent my childhood spying on deer and fishing for trout deep in the Laurentian forests. I grew up to the sounds of pond hockey and the fizz of static while trying to follow the Habs play the puck on a blurry, black and white TV screen.
While always a fan, it has only been in the past few years that I’ve really developed a true appreciation of the game. I follow the Habs passionately, living the highs and lows with the team every day. For the past couple years, I’ve been writing pre-game reports, first for my friends and then for the bar where we watched the game.
As a student, I was delighted to make a deal with the owners where when I brought in the report and handed it out, I could eat and drink to my heart’s content. People have told me how much they enjoy my pre-game summaries, and I hope to develop that so I am able to contribute to Habs Inside/Out.
Without further ado, then, here is Chris’s first I/O blog:
Last Year’s News
Do you remember the electricity that would course through the veins of the Bell Centre last year when Sheldon Souray would wind up from the point on the power play? The anticipation of that flashing red light preparing a cheer in your throat? Yeah, of course, I remember that.
How about the celebrations the year before when Jan Bulis scored 4 goals in one game – on four shots, no less. Really? He did?
Or do you remember the excitement that would grip everyone when a confident Richard Zednik would streak up along the boards? Hmmm … Zednik played for the Habs?
It’s amazing how quickly the names of heros – and villains – are quickly forgotten by us fickle fans. With Edmonton’s Sheldon Souray being placed on the injured reserve list for the second time this season, I thought we could take a quick look at some of those names that we once cheered – and jeered – for.
In no particular order (statistics before Thursday’s games):
Radek Bonk, who signed a $1.475-million contract with the Predators during the off-season, and who was perhaps our best checking forward last year, has 11G-8A-19P in 48 GP. Oh, and he’s a team low -17.
Mike Johnson, Bonk’s PK partner last season, barely made the only team that was interested in him this season: the St. Louis Blues. In 21 games, he scored 2, helped on 3 others, and was -4. His season is over due to a shoulder injury.
Speaking of shoulder injuries, Souray is -7, with 3 goals and 7 assists (5 of those points on the PP) in only 26 games. He is listed as day-to-day by the Oilers and may require surgery in the off-season.
Garth Murray, who also suffered a season-ending shoulder injury, had no points but had racked up 19 PIM in 6 appearances for Florida. The 25-year-old forward was claimed off waivers by Florida in November.
Craig Rivet, in 49 games, is -1 with 5G-19A-24P. That’s a good enough point total to rank him fourth on the Sharks.
Alexander Perezhogin, who bolted from the Habs last year for more money and more ice-time, currently sits 12th in the Russian Super League in points. He has 19G-18A-37P in 41 games with Salavat Yulaev.
Jan Bulis, who wore out his welcome in Vancouver, is 20th in points in the Russian Super League. In 47 games with Khimik, the Czech winger has 13G-20A-33P.
David Aebischer is minding the nets for HC Lugano. In his 20 appearances with the Swiss team after having been released by the Coyotes, Abby has a 2.42 GAA and a .926 save percentage.
Mike Ribeiro is, of course, leading the Dallas Stars in scoring and plus-minus (+14). He has 56 points in 51 games, with 34 assists and a career high 22 goals. The Montreal native recently signed a 5-year / $25 million contract extension with the Stars.
Sergei Samsonov, who was stinking it up in Chicago (0G-4A-4P, -7, in 23 GP) has come to life after being claimed by the Carolina Hurricanes off waivers. With the ‘Canes, Samsonov already has tallied 3 goals and 5 assists for 8 points in 9 games.
Aaron Downey is a part-time grinder for the Cup-favourite Detroit Red Wings. In 34 games he has 1 assist and 55 PIM.