What a win!

• Jaro carries Habs through slow start: Red Fisher

Inside the Room

“We fed off crowd”: Darche

Sergei on the skids: Dave Stubbs

Habs find a way: Michael Farber

Getting to Fleury: Roy MacGregor

Keeping Big Three in check: Scott Burnside

Place blame on Penguins’ stars

Penguins fans like hockey in Montreal

171 Comments

  1. jimmy shaker says:

    Man I wish we had Jeremy Roenick on our team last night just to see the comments he’d be firing at the refs after that horrible dispaly.  Friedman tried to get something out of Gio, but Gio wouldn’t bite.  Roenick on the other hand would have given us a beautiful display.  And as much as we all hate Sid right now and call him a crybaby which is pretty accurate, we all know that we would love to have him on our team, right everyone?  I’d take him in a heartbeat.  But I still hate him right now!

    Shaker

  2. Fansincebirth says:

    The last time I felt that incensed about reffing had to be watching Team Canada in the early days where the European refs made bad call after bad call after non-call.

    I can’t remember the last time I heard the home crowd that upset. Perhaps those of you who remember the days of ‘The Riot’ could compare this one to that one. Replace Campbell with Bettman and you’re done.

    I don’t subscribe to the conspiracy theory about the league/refs against the Habs but if ever there was a case for the conspiracy side of the coin, last night was it. Aside from the explatives I was using last night, I was speechless, absolutely speechless. I watched the highlights from the ‘Nucks/Hawks game from the previous night and couldn’t believe the non-calls for goalie interference and didn’t think I could see a worse called game until last night.

    When Mr. Cherry calls them out and shows favourtism towards his hated Habs, ya know there’s something rotten in Denmark.

    I wish this game could/would be reviewed by the NHL overlords and an official apology was issued to the Habs and their fans.

    I also I was born rich instead of incredibly good looking….meh, such is life.

    “Without the strength of the past, the team may face a choice – to win, or to be French-Canadian?” — Ken Dryden

  3. HabFanSince72 says:

    There’s also a “don’t do anything to the crybaby” penalty.

     

  4. Malreg says:

    There is a Holding the Stick penalty.

  5. Gormdog says:

    Sarcasm?

     

    Farber is a big, big, big Habs fan. He’s as happy as any of us, but still cautiously optimistic.

  6. Geoff F says:

    Great thanks for the clarification.  And i guess you got my point.  LOL.

  7. Peterborough Habs Fan says:

    Picking up another players stick is interference, unless you’re Crosby!

  8. Peterborough Habs Fan says:

    Absolutely shameful officiating, but really, what do we expect. Bettman and his cronies don’t want a Canadian team around and the message is getting clearer. I like the idea of the NHL.com website and leaving messages.

  9. Geoff F says:

    I wanted to throw something out there and see if anyone knows if a rule exists on this.  I was thinking about it last night and i’m sure it’s a penalty but what would the call be if…

    1. A pens player (i.e Crosby) slashes a Habs Players’ stick (i.e Gorges) if they both drop their sticks and say Gorges’ stick is broken can he grab Crosby’s stick and use it till the whistle if he picks it up first?

    2. If they don’t drop sticks but Gorges stick breaks can he in the midst of a scuffle grab the Crosby’s stick in the midst of a scuffle to prevent being disadvantaged?

    I’m sure these scenarios would result in a penalty i’m just curious what that would be?  But to me if Crosby were to break my stick i’d try to get his or smash my broken stick over his head since the way the game is being reffed i’m going to take the penalty anyway!!!!

     

  10. pic1983 says:

    Red Fisher really needs to get over the fact that dynasties like the habs were in the 70s dont exist anymore, and when did michael farber become such a hater?

    They both seemed so bitter in their columns…

     

  11. John Q Public says:

    Alas what we all new to be true was blatantly in force yesterday.

    The orders from the commander in chief were excuted according to plan and their plan FAILED.

    All evil is seen for what it is and the good should shall prevail.

    These habs are the embodiment of character and hard work.

    Karma is a bitch and it swings both ways.

    While given every oppurtunity to succeed, they, the favored squandered their chances.

    This is a war and we the mighty will prevail.

    Location Pittsburg. Pa – The Battle of Game 5. Are you Ready?

    Go Habs Go !!!

    Long live the Habs.

     

     

  12. Thomas Le Fan says:

    So the Pens get to have 8 players on the ice at all times? And we still beat them? The ghosts have found their way home baby! Go Habs!

  13. smiler2729 says:

    I have been a Plekanec non-lover and have always said his true worth is as a 3rd line checking center who plays on the PP and PK. He isn’t worth the money he will be getting but is definitely in line for a hefty raise.

    The best thing about his playoff performance has been in the overall team concept the Habs have been playing in shutting down and squeezing the opposition away from numerous scoring opportunities. The Habs Playoff Edition ’10 have been textbook playing without the puck and have been burying their chances when they do have the puck more often than not. That team concept is what gets a team playoff wins.

    Throw in some timely goaltending and you may have the recipe for a long run if the pace can be maintained.

    Jaro Halak has played himself into a huge raise as well…. this summer, like last, should be very interesting for Habs player movement but for different reasons cuz it’ll be more a question of they keep rather who they’ll get.

  14. santeri says:

    The last time I felt that incensed about reffing had to be watching Team Canada in the early days where the European refs made bad call after bad call after non-call.

    For me, the horrific reffing last night reminded of the ’87 Canada Cup and the North American refs in the finals. Absolutely putrid.

  15. joeybarrie says:

    Um sorry. I only saw ONE goal. I saw a tripping play that led to a goal, but when I ran into the yard to kick over the bushes, I imagine they called the goal back. Cause there is NO WAY that should have been allowed. I saw the second goal that i imagine was called back because of officiating, and I remember this first puck sneak into the net. But that luck i also didn’t count. There was a weird one where the puck hit a skate, but I dont remember a Habs player actually putting it into the net.

    THE ONLY GOAL I SAW WAS A WRAPAROUND OBVIOUSLY LEARNED BY WATCHING LATS BY LAPS….

    Habs win game 4     1-0…

    There may be other teams, but only ONE Club De Hockey…

  16. habs001 says:

    i think  we were 5-1 vs boston…their top goal scorer gone and their second line centre gone….if this series happens i bet we would be picked by media oulets 80%  to win the series as opposed to 0% vs caps and pitts

  17. Fargo Habs Fan says:

    If they can penalize a team for the actions of fans, let’s send throngs of agents to Pittsburgh to really stir the pot.  I’ll even provide my services in exchange for tickets.  :)

    -Dustin-

    “The good thing about drinking during games is if they lose, you’re too drunk to care during and too hungover to care after.” – J.T.

  18. Fansincebirth says:

    This just begs for one of those Hitler/youtube rants :o)

    “Without the strength of the past, the team may face a choice – to win, or to be French-Canadian?” — Ken Dryden

  19. pic1983 says:

    True that.

    We finished 16th out of the 16 playoff teams.  We are the ultimate underdog/cinderella story.  Its not like we finished the season on a ridiculous run like detroit did either. 

  20. Le Jadester says:

    That’s a good idea Ed.  It would be interesting to see what some investigative reporting could produce.

    As for SK 74, its too bad.  Him being banished from the team is like disowning a son, and that’s sad IMO.  You never want to see that happen to a family, but it is what it is now and its time to move on. I just don’t know why some people consider him to be a villain, I think he’s misunderstood and wants to play and work hard (even McGuire said that about him) but it’s just not going to happen with JM and everything has been spiraling outta control since his benching after the Carolina game.

    On a more positive note, I think that PK interview last night on CBC with EF after the game was amazing !  I thought that kid was the real deal after the to B2B Phlyers games, but now I know forsure.  How refreshing !

    Everything happens for a reason I guess ?

     

    Habs, OLE !

  21. sYstem21 says:

    That first Pens goal was complete travesty…As a lifelong HABS fans I can deal with non calls at this point but that was utterly unbelievable…

  22. pic1983 says:

    I think they could have given a penalty, but then nevermind some beer cans, it would have turned into a riot!

    The refs knew they deserved it, it was the most pathetic display.  Media types are calling the montreal fans classless, but they should be calling the refs classless for not upholding the integrity of the game.  At least the guy from the pittsburgh post-gazette admitted that all the calls went pittsburghs way.

  23. Malreg says:

    I believe they can give a penalty.  I’ve heard the announcer warn fans to stop or else we would get a penalty before.

    When I played in Bantam back in the day, the ref’s gave us a penalty because one of the parents kept yelling at him.  The ironic part about that? The parent that was yelling at the ref was the Head of Referee’s for our home town lol

  24. derfab says:

    Not if the referee is unconscious. man were they out to lunch last night. Habs were fortunate but very deserving considering the numerous missed calls, 2 of which would nullify Pens goals. These guys should not get another game this year.

  25. habsman-itoba says:

    Dear Paul and Eric,

    I’m not sure what you’re trying to prove out there.  You have a mandate to fulfill, and your efforts are sadly lacking.  I’m not entirely certain where you came up with last night’s performance.  Why did you only call two penalties on Gill?  Why did you let Gorges play the whole game with no penalties?  I’m pretty sure I saw Gionta dive again.  He does that.  Surely there should have been a penalty shot or two awarded in the third period.  You gave the Canadiens way too much time to play five on five.   There were a lot of missed calls.

    Take a look, boys, was that really goaltender interference by Malkin?  And we all know that Cooke does not trip anyone.   He never breaks the rules.  You gave out two too many powerplays to my Penguins last night.

     If this one sided officiating continues to be an issue, you will be terminated.  Parity be damned, I’m the boss.

    Redonkulously,

    Gary Bettman

    ps. I do appreciate your efforts to reward my boy Sidney.  Let him play.  Keep on calling everything he asks for.  He is your mentor.  Follow his lead.  Or else.

  26. AH says:

    BREAKING NEWS: Last night long after most had left the arena, Gary Bettman was seen going into the Refs dressing room by a local radio reporter who had been filing his story late. Said reporter went to the dressing room, pressed his ear up against the door to try and hear what was said; as best as he could make out the conversation went something like this:

    Bettman: “Can someone in hear please tell me WHAT THE F***K HAPPENED OUT THERE TONIGHT?!!”

    Ref (voice unknown barely audible): “Sorry Gary, we tried our best out there…”

    Bettman: “You tried your best?, don’t give me that crap! These f***king overachieving, midget Habs have now taken this to a best of 3!!!, with a hell of a chance to win this thing!”

    Silence…

    Bettman: “You bunch were given this assignment for a reason, you were given very CLEAR instructions on how to, shall we say, HANDLE this game, and you still blew it!!! What the h*ll am I supposed to do now huh?

    Ref (unknown): “um..I’ve got Chris Lee’s phone # on my speed dial?”

    Bettman: “Give me your dam phone!”

  27. HabFanSince72 says:

    Having the OSM do the anthems was a brilliant idea.

     

  28. CERF says:

    i actually was thinking the same thing last night.. and told myself “jeeze this dude was right”

     

    well done

  29. SLONCOLD says:

    i belive he is done for the year. he had surgery on his rotator cuff/ labrum…. it’s takes a long time to recover from….

  30. mike g says:

    Where did u get that picture man??

    I need it, I’m thinkin of making t-shirts with it lol

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

  31. avatar_58 says:

    How on earth would we be the favs? Boston is higer seeded, end of story. They *should* beat the habs, who shouldn’t even be IN the playoffs. Sorry but we’re underdogs till the end – theres no way the media or anyone else can change that.

  32. smiler2729 says:

    The biggest and sweetest thing about this Habs playoff run is they are the underdog which was never really the case in the past.

    The ’70s saw them as perennial winners more than not and even though the early to mid ’80s teams were hardly as dominating, the mystique was still there every spring. 1986’s Cup win was a gift from Steve Smith but the 1989 Cup final appearance was well-earned as the team was back among the elite with Pat Burns coaching until they began stumbling in spite of themselves and Burns’ hard-as-nails approach.

    The ’93 team again were handed the Cup when the mediocre Islanders with Glen Healy in net knocked off the mighty two-time Cup winning Penguins in 7.

    This season not only are the Habs underdogs that no one picked to go anywhere, but they’re the ones knocking off the big boys. That and the team’s character are the most satisfying aspect of what is becoming one of the best playoffs I’ve seen Montreal play in (I do miss those Nords-Habs clashes though).

  33. kakey says:

    Anyone know the status of Paul Mara? He’s out for the season with a shoulder injury, but if he’s recovered, could be a good insurance if any additional dman go down.

  34. sYstem21 says:

    Guys I have a question,

    So I was there last night and pretty much had my shoe in my hand ready to throw it. The first time stuff hit the ice it was mainly towels but the second time it was beer cans with beer in them. Made a nice mess right in front of the officials box/sin bins. I started to get worried at that point. Is there a rule that could give the home team a bench penalty for the fans disrupting the game?

     

    Also as a quick a side, Stubbs, totally agree with yr tweet about the anthem. In the 3 plus years I’ve been going to games at the Bell, I don’t think I’ve ever been more proud as Canadian in that building. The orchestra did a great job too, I ran into them after the game and we joked about how they are our new goodluck charm!

  35. bravadojj says:

    Hey fellow HIO readers! I posted yesterday about some superstitions about the pre-game song the habs go out to….. and guess what? They changed the song back to “fix you” and they win!!! I know its kinda goofy writing this but with the way the league is doing whatever it takes to make our habs not win a unbiased officiated game… maybe we should ALL tell the A/V guys at the bell centre to leave the pre-game song to FIX YOU!!!!   GO HABS GO!!

  36. Fargo Habs Fan says:

    Great post  I was 9 in ’93 and, while I remember, I was too young to appreciate what it truly meant.  This team is the first in a long long time that, I think, cares and wants to win as much as the fans.  Whatever happens from here on out, we have to remember the great spring to which we’ve been treated.  This year feels magical.  Enjoy the ride everyone.

    -Dustin-

    “The good thing about drinking during games is if they lose, you’re too drunk to care during and too hungover to care after.” – J.T.

  37. mike g says:

    This is from Eric Engles:

    “This run has been completely void of logic. It’s been an emotional hurricane. Any fan suggesting the Habs would win, from game-to-game, is going on nothing but what’s in their heart. As for the Canadiens themselves, who do believe in their ability, they’ve won games purely on heart and determination. It’s amazing, if not completely inspiring.”

    That basically sums it all up. Last night, sitting on my season ticket lounge chair at my local bar, I had enough. I had enough of following this team for my whole 22 years existence, and never being rewarded for it. I’m too young to remember our last drink from the Mug, I was only 5. But year in and year out, we as loyal fans are dealt dissapointment after dissapointment. It’s always a miracle when we upset the top seeds, but then we crumble and it’s back to reality. They make us feel like they are a Cinderella team every playoff years, and then they play like female dogs in the 2nd round.

    But this year seems different. Last night when the 2nd period was over, I mentionned above that I had had enough. I couldn’t take losing again, especially to a team that hasn’t dominated us. I didn’t want to see the refs decide another game, something they were doing so very well. I didn’t want to see another star player come into Montreal and get everything he wants given to him. Then, the 3rd period started, and I got this feeling that those days may be over. The Habs had every reason to give up last night, we all know why. It is so hard as an athelete to get yourself going in a situation like that, most of us have no idea. But they did it. They saw us throw the white towels onto the ice. That smacked them in the face. They saw their loyal fans, the best in the world, doing their part to try win this game. So, they responded in the best possible manner; victory.

    Last nights win was more than a simple series tying victory. It was a statement. It was a 20 minute, 3rd period video to the rest of the league and teams saying, “Were not going away. You can try all you want, but it ain’t gonna be enough”. These Habs appreciate everything that we are doing for them. They the players finally want to win just as much as the fans do. That, my friends, is something worth smiling about. That is dangerous, because we all know how much we want to win.

  38. ed lopaz says:

    Habs hockey = Smart hockey we work as a team, and we win as a team. we play 5 man defence – not just 2. we play with energy, we play with Subban in Markov’s place (for now) – Pk could have been with us since the Olympics, but nevermind that.

    Hey HIO staff writers:

    someone should write a piece about how junior aged stars, first line scorers, are very often required to work their way up the ladder by learning to play a “system” and defence – first hockey.

    this had led to the demise of Latendresse and now Sergei.

    both were 1st line scorers, and both struggled with the transition to 3rd or 4th line duties.

    contrast this to success stories going back to guys like carbonneau (who was a gifted scorer), and so many others, and you can start to identify whether a young player has what it takes to make it all the way.

    I don’t have the patience to go through all of the details, but I think there’s a story in there.

  39. Habsone says:

    Good one!!!!!

  40. Habsone says:

    Lets just get through the series.  Who cares about the pay and who we send away!!   Go Habs Go!

  41. Habsone says:

    Well said!!!

  42. pmaraw says:

    goalie – look at philly, no goaltending.  look at washington, no goaltending, I guess i would say that buffalo is the exception?  there arent that many High End Goalies in the nhl right now, imo, and to let one go would probably be a disaster, with that said, i hope they get both of them inked.

  43. topher5468 says:

    I do, but Gretzky and Lemieux retired 

    “It’s not an obsession, It’s a way of life..”

  44. Storm Man says:

    Is the season over yet?

  45. pmaraw says:

    joey, we won 3-2…  it was pittsburgh who won 1-0(2-0 with empty netter) oh and look how far defence has gotten teams like nj in the past.

  46. pmaraw says:

    all i can say is, i wish i made his kinda money to skate in circles on the ice and try a little dipsy doodle once every 5-10 games or so

  47. lenny says:

    Couple of notes….

    People should not be down on Plek’s lack of scoring, the team is winning and they are playing a very defensive, he is, as well as all fowards on a very tight leash…

    Carey price has manned up by calling out SK, working hard in practice and seems genuine about his happiness about Halak and the team

    The refs are a joke….and need to be addressed by habs management

    The habs have a legitimate chance of beating the pens…

    the city is a live

  48. Xtrahabsfan says:

    Well with Halak  now a superstar and  due to a HUGE PAY DAY ,who do you keep Plecs or Halak(who gets the  5 million per contract?)

  49. pmaraw says:

    I would like to see mario lemieux asked about the ref job last night.  it would be nice to see him show that he cares about the integrity of the game and not money.

  50. Jbell10 says:

    That is a great video.

  51. pmaraw says:

    this has been my morning anthem for the past week :o

  52. Shublips says:

    What a comeback by the Habs!  Halak continues to be Halak, Lapierre has rediscovered his game and Gionta is carrying this team on his back.

    Did you see the look in his eyes in the third?  He refused to lose that game because of the refs.  He was determined for the Habs to overcome the adversity and win, DESPITE the refs.

    That guy is a true leader and is making all the difference in this post season:
    http://www.habsaddict.com/2010/05/canadiens-penguins-halak-lapierre-lead.html

    So what happens next game?  Can that Habs keep the ball rolling?

    Habs Addict.com http://www.HabsAddict.com on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Habs-Addict/293450486615 on Twitter: http://twitter.com/HabsAddict on Hockeybuzz.com: http://www.hockeybuzz.com/blogger_archive.php?blogger_id=137

  53. Castor says:

    The video that’s hyping HABS fans up everywhere. It’s all over the radio and on CTV and CBC last night too!

     

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysDphYqMG6M

  54. habs001 says:

    if we somehow beat pitts we would be favourites vs bruins( as they should beat the flyers)…but regardless we will have to address scoring issues next year as ak46 and sk74 are probably gone and pouliot now is a big question mark  as a top six forward as he is starting to look as a third line player.

  55. habbyone says:

    Anybody still want to trade Halak???

  56. Storm Man says:

    You have insulted donkeys world wide. Farber is something you flush after you go to the washroom.

  57. Storm Man says:

    That team of refs should be banished from the NHL and made to work in the KHL for life. The Habs are inspiring and need to take a seat at the head of the table on Saturday.

  58. slapshot777 says:

    I would say that they would probably call it an unsportsmanlike penalty.

     

    To you from failing hands we throw the torch, be yours to hold it high.

  59. sholi2000.com says:

    Congrats to Michael Farber, this week’s Donkey on Paper.

    Way to Go Habs, great thrid period, doesn’t matter how it gets done, just get it done.

    They Call Me Shane

  60. Jbell10 says:

    I can see how the pens fans wouldnt  be too optimistic for this series, the Habs shutdown D is giving the usually fantastic and exciting pens offense a very hard time. They seem flat out there, I feel like the Habs have been controlling the play in most of the games this post season.

    Yes I agree with your 2nd paragraph. So much heart and desire inked all over this line-up, it gives me a warm fuzzy feeling inside lol.

  61. HabFanSince72 says:

    The Habs are absolutely right not to complain about the refs. All it does is make you lose your focus. Ask Roberto Luongo.

     

    Look in the stands and see Jean Beliveau. Do you think he complained to the refs when things didn’t go his way?

     

  62. MontrealAtheist says:

    Lemieux is a traitor to the game and his country who has been morally corrupted by the financial success with the Penguins.

    As long as the refs’ decisions go the Pens’ way expect don’t expect Lemieux to give the refs a thumbs-down, that’s how it is.

  63. MontrealAtheist says:

    or for this matter, does anybody still want to bench Halak and play Price in Pittsburgh?

  64. 123456 says:

    WHO??    ha ha ha

    secret mod

  65. slapshot777 says:

    Well said, Bob had the balls to pretty much gut the team of it’s deadwood and bring in players with heart and Character. These are the top things that you need in a player to win. Talent can’t do it by itself. If so we should have been winning a long time ago with Kovalev.

     

     

    To you from failing hands we throw the torch, be yours to hold it high.

  66. SLONCOLD says:

    can’t say i’m in love with all of gainey’s moves but some of them are paying off big time now.

    i will say this, JM is getting something very special from a certain goaltender.

  67. smiler2729 says:

    Just like him, the whole thing is a non-factor.

  68. smiler2729 says:

    Cheers to that! But now your post will bring out all the idiotic, and I do mean IDIOTIC, Gaineybashers.

  69. smiler2729 says:

    I watched the game from the rink bar (I had a 10:00pm game) with a couple of Penguin fans. They agreed that the refs were trying to throw the game to the Pens, but they also said when it was 2-1 for Pittsburgh that they felt in their gut that the Habs would win the game and wouldn;t be surprized if they took the series cuz of it.

    I just know that having a Habs team this competitive and playing in mid-May is the most fun I’ve had since ’93 (a couple of blips were the 1st round wins vs. Boston in ’02 and ’04 but the Canes & Lightning put them out too easily in the next rounds back then). The half a dozen or so seasons of Kovalev & Co. were very hard to root for, you just felt the team had no heart (other than Saku) or real desire to play as a team.

    This is different… this is good.

  70. psantini says:

    I don’t know how far the HABS will go. However, it is sure fun to watch them play.

    For this reason I would like to take this moment and thank the person who is responsible for all of this. I know it is a team sport and there are many people involved for the HABS success. However, there is one man that came many years ago and took a team that was lost and started to put the pieces of the puzzle together for a winning formula. 

    I would like to say a big THANK YOU to BOB GANEY. His hard work and knowledge of the game to build a winning team made the Canadiens what they are today. I hope that you are enjoying this playoff run as much as we all are.

    From a fan that had the great honour to meet and congratulate you on your Stanley cup win at Murray Hill park in June 1979.

     

  71. Clutch10 says:

    This whole thing with Sergei is depressing.

  72. joeybarrie says:

    Well I’m glad we won that game. But to win 1-0. We really need to be scoring more goals. For our home stretch we have 1 goal. Not enough. Defense will get us only so far.

    There may be other teams, but only ONE Club De Hockey…

  73. habsguy says:

    I’m not overly impressed with JM either,  but if the K bros can’t look in the mirror or watch their mates play their guts out and see that they need to kick it up a notch,  then they’re blind,  and their egos are so big then can’t see around them….I do however feel that the heart of most of the Habs is the reason they are in this position in the playoffs…The AK that has played the last 2 games seems to be coming around,  but I wouldn’t take any of the current players off the ice for SK,  unless SK went to the staff and his mates with a HUGE SORRY,  I know I haven’t played my best,  give me another chance and you wont be sorry….F him !!!!!!!!

  74. Chris says:

    The key with this is that, perhaps contrary to what is coming across, I am not completely attached to Sergei Kostitsyn as a Montreal Canadien.  I think that the last nail has been pounded into that coffin:  his time in Montreal is clearly over.

    I just see this renewal of the Montreal Canadiens’ dark days in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s remains very tenous.  We are not stocked with a ton of up-and-coming NHL-calibre talent in the minors, especially at forward, and free agency is a difficult team-building tool in Montreal for a variety of reasons.  Losing any of that talent, no matter how much of a pain in the rear end they are, for little return has negative long-term ramnifications that worry me.

  75. ed lopaz says:

    Kristo,

    Leblanc,

    Palushai,

    white

    enqvist

    paccioretti

    that’s not a bad list. I would wager they will be solid NHL players in the next 3 or 4 years.

     

  76. Chris says:

    It is a decent list, to be sure.

    But historically, only about 50% of the prospects we think will become NHL-calibre players actually get there.

    I like White, and think he will be a serviceable 4th line agitator starting next season, when I expect he will be on the team due to his youth and cheap cap hit.

    Leblanc and Kristo (and Avtsin, for that matter) are each about 2 seasons away, perhaps more in the case of Leblanc who seems to really have his head screwed on straight and won’t rush his education for a hockey career unless the time is right to make the jump.

    Pacioretty is an X-factor…I’m not sure I see goal-scoring coming from him anymore, but I could easily see him as a faster, more-skilled version of Travis Moen.

    Maxwell, Trotter, Desharnais…these are all guys that could be stuck in that “Good top-6 players in the AHL, not quite good enough for a top-6 role in the NHL” dilemma.  They would all need to improve their defensive play substantially to be good prospects as third or fourth line players. 

    Can’t comment on Enqvist as I haven’t seen him play enough.

  77. Chris says:

    The Habs can not afford to dump players for nothing at this point in their re-build.  Destroying asset value is a practice that creates perennial doormats.

    As one of the few people that was excited about the Habs signing Martin last summer, I want to take a mulligan.  I am thoroughly unimpressed with him this year, and this playoff run that has everybody so excited has only made me dislike him more.  In my opinion, and I know I’m in the overwhelmed minority here, the Montreal Canadiens have won in spite of Jacques Martin’s coaching, not because of it.

  78. Le Jadester says:

    I think I have to agree with you.  I like how you’re sticking to your guns on this one.  I flip flop back and forth all the time. 

    Habs, OLE !

  79. boris420 says:

    And I’m also guessing you guys want Sergei to play…lol where have you guys been these past two seasons…obviously not paying much attention to the situations in montreal.

  80. showey47 says:

    Sergei’s plus/minus says his defensive skills are better then anyone else playing on the bottom 2 lines,the same can be said about his offensive skills. Despite playing at least 30 less games then most of them.

  81. boris420 says:

    Yes and also important is how he said segei is as good as done.

     

    In his own words:

    Kick his butt down Rue Ste. Catherine on the way out of town would
    appear to sum it up.

  82. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Sergei. So much promise, so little brain.

  83. MontrealAtheist says:

    Some of us have been saying that for the last two games!”

    Good thing that JM doesn’t base his coaching decisions on random postings in Habs forums. Heck, for every ridiculous roster change you could possibly think of there is probably an advocate somewhere on HIO who screams it out.

  84. TripleX says:

    JM said that shortening the bench and not playing four lines might
    have tired out key players.  JM said that having fresh legs in the third
    was certainly key in the ability of the team to push back in the third
    for the win.

    DUH?  Some of us have been saying that for the last
    two games!

    I don’t hate anyone, especially someone I have never even met.  In fact he is a distant relative of a family member.  I do question his conservative methodology and reluctance to make obvious coaching moves.

     

    “Good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgement.”

  85. TripleX says:

    You really are a bitter person.  You need to chill dude.

     

    “Good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgement.”

  86. boris420 says:

    Yet he has gotten us further than any other coach Ive known in my lifetime! What are these so called obvious coaching moves? Maybe whats obvious to a professional like him is not obvious to someone like you. And don’t come telling me that playing sergei is an obvious move!

  87. boris420 says:

    Sorry but I love my hockey and I cannot stand certain peoples mentality about this situation:

    Act like a moron and an idiot and get rewarded???

    Since when has that been the case in Montreal? Explain me your logic.

  88. TripleX says:

    I believe in icing the best talent available.  I believe it is the coaches job to ensure a player understands his job and executes it.  I believe a coach identifies a players strengths and weaknesses and allows the player to play to those strengths and minimize the weaknesses.

    SK feels badly treated.  Whether that is true is not relevant right now. What is relevant is that a talented player who could help the team is not playing.  This is a management failure.  If SK was a bad apple he should have been moved long ago, if not then someone failed him.

     

    “Good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgement.”

  89. alestar says:

    Not sure about the “So much promise” part, he benefitted from having two amazing linemates in junior when he racked up all those points.

    He seems to have decent offensive skills, but nothing extraordinary…a 20 goal scorer, tops, with not so good defensive skills. He may latch on with another team or two before playing out his career in Europe.

     

    XXIV…and counting

  90. TripleX says:

    I just mentioned one in my comment above.  You can’t win in the playoffs playing 2.5 lines, that is obvious.  Another is making Halak the starter.  That should have been done long ago in the regular season.  Obvious.  PK Suban should have been called up earlier.  Obvious.  White is a superior forward than either Maxwell or Darche.  Obvious.  Metro with AK and SK would make an effective line.  Obvious and no longer possible as SK is history.

    There is much more but you get the point I hope.  This team has gone farther than any team I have seen also.  But no other team I have watched has had a goalie that is playing like no other I have ever seen.

     

     

    “Good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgement.”

  91. boris420 says:

    Halak has been the starter since the second half of the season from what Ive seen. You can’t win with 2.5 lines is something that should be obvious but as you can see we have been doing it…will it come around to screw us over in the end? I want to say yes but Ill probably eat my words. Obvious PK should have been called up earlier? That is the complete opposite from obvious, I think it was good we kept him in Hamilton and I think many will agree with me. Obvious that Metro, SK and AK would be effective??? WOW Thats the worst one youve said, they have not been performing at all and putting them on a line together spells DISASTER. Overall not everything is as obvious as you think!

  92. TripleX says:

    Halak was in regular rotation with Price the WHOLE season except for the last couple of weeks, but even then if Halak was less than spectacular Price was put in.  Dude, it even happened in the Washington series!  What are you seeing?

    PK Suban should have been brought up instead of playing MAB over twenty minutes a game.  If that is not obvious to you then I don’t know what else to say.  Metro has been a fighter all season and I fear his shoulder injury is hampering him from playing like he wants to.  AK and SK have worked together well whenever they were united.  JM has never played them together much ever since SK received a penalty for going after a player who ran his brother.

    Yes some things are OBVIOUS.  But some people are frozen by stubbornness and their conservative nature.

     

     

     

    “Good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgement.”

  93. boris420 says:

    Honestly what do you consider a starting goaltender. Not everyone can pull off a brodeur and play 75 games a season. Even if some goalies wanted to coachs will always use their backup goalie. I think it has been obvious Halak is our #1 goalie and it’s been a while. And I remember watching many games where AK and SK both did nothing! Ever since they both got knocked out big time they have been playing as if they have brain damage!

     

    Also, you contradict yourself blaming SK on bad management and then saying we should have played PK much sooner. If we did play PK sooner and he pulled an SK you would be the first person to blame management. You talk about people being stubborn yet you don’t look in the mirror.

  94. KenD29 says:

    Just imagine the player he “could” be if he had it between the ears !!

    Tonight we skate with them, Tonight is our night!

  95. KenD29 says:

    The Habs management did not want to bring up PK while the Bulldogs were in a series against the Manitoba Moose. At that point, they probably did not think they had a realistic shot against the Caps.

    When Spacek went down, they all but had no choice but to bring him up. Not to mention, while the farm team is still in the playoffs, the ruling is the NHL club is only allowed a certain number of call ups. The Habs had one left, that being Subban at that point. Propbably tried to hold off as long as they could.

    Tonight we skate with them, Tonight is our night!

  96. Chris says:

    Michel Therrien also led an 8th seeded Habs team to an upset of the #1 seeded Bruins in 2002.  His 8th seeded Habs then had the 3rd seeded Hurricanes on the ropes with a 3-0 lead in Game 4 of their second round series with the Habs already up 2 games to 1.  Some horrific refereeing along with Therrien’s ref-baiting finally catching up to him led the Habs to blow that series and crash out of the playoffs.

    I don’t think anybody would call Michel Therrien a great coach, recognizing that without other-worldly goaltending by Jose Theodore that spring and an inspirational return by Saku Koivu, the Habs were dead meat.

    I’m not saying Martin is as bad as Therrien…far from it.  But the whole argument that the Habs stealing some wins based on a couple of goals and other-worldly goaltending by Halak suddenly vindicates any mistakes Martin might be making is a bit absurd. 

    I hate all the flip-flopping on these boards as much as the next person.  But there remain a few of us that are not crazy about Martin, believe me.

  97. vic says:

    I wonder when we bring up young players in the furture and the coach doesnt like the attitude do we dump them.

    I winder how Sergi and the other players would react to Boucher or Scotty Bowman who know how to handle different personalities.Do you think Oburn will be around long next year.

  98. TripleX says:

    Treating every player as if they are made the same and have the same level of maturity is beyond silly.  What happened to Price and SK was partly the result of bad management, of that I am sure.

    PK Suban is that rare young man that has it all together and his priorities are realized.  He displays a level of maturity and play far beyond his age. 

     A good coach and management analyzes each player as individuals and goes from there.  Yes, they should have a program in place to mentor young players.  But to say every young player should never be rushed is ill advised.  PK Suban belongs in the NHL that is clear.

     

    “Good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgement.”

  99. bwoar says:

    Sorry 3X, but I gotta disagree on SK too.  I had the same exact thought you did, K-Bros & Metro.  I am reminded of their success with Lang as a centre.  But they have played in games together and looked very average, too.  I doubt anybody can back up a convincing argument that the bros were consistently good when played together.  If they were, we’d have seen more of it.

    The obvious that I fear you are ignoring is that AK is out of his brother’s league with ability.  The 2 players don’t really belong on the same line.  In the end a hungry AK on the wing with Plekanec or Gomez is worth more than having AK-SK-Metro stumble around and have good games 1 out of 3 times.

    It’s disappointing that so many people blame JM for SK’s poor attitude.  As fans we often fetishize a player to the point where somehow it must be the coach or the org’s fault if the guy doesn’t pan out.  There’s a tendency in MTL to assume all out prospects will fulfill their potential and that those flashes of brilliance will once day be the norm instead of just flashes.  Hard work and discipline makes that happen.  Jaro Halak did it under worse conditions, SK simply didn’t.  At a given point you can’t expect coaching to solve all a player’s mental deficiencies.

    Your comment on PK is just silly.  The org left him down for developmental reasons.  They were RIGHT.  Folks will have to accept that.  Patience is part of the game.  Remember Gainey’s patience with SK?  It didn’t pay off in the end.  But keeping Subban on the farm was a good strategic move & allowed him to get the minutes he wouldn’t have played in a healthy Habs D corps.

    All of Sergei’s story has been confirmed by very respected members of the media, e.g. M-A Godin, etc.  It’s not like stories about SK’s attitude (and his teammates dislike of him) were dreamt up a by Réjean Tremblay or one of his ilk.  I am as disappointed as anyone about it, but the team (the players) wants to move on, let them do that and banish all distractions.

  100. TripleX says:

     

    I agreed with keeping PK Suban down on the farm during the season to gain experience, that was the logical move.  There was no upside in bringing him up to a struggling hockey team.

    In the playoffs with Spacek and Mara not available and JM reluctant to play O’Byrne, the logical move was to bring up PK Suban.  Playing a marginal Dman like MAB on the top unit with over 20 minutes a game was dumb.  I think MAB’s -10 rating so far in the playoffs is proof of that.

    The season and the playoffs are fluid.  JM is very slow to adapt to changing conditions and I am thankful Muller is there to whisper in his ear.  JM’s downfall in Ottawa was his failure to adapt.  Whether JM has changed his ways or it is Muller, I am glad he can adapt now.

     

    “Good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgement.”

  101. boris420 says:

    Funny how when we lose a game you all start to rip on the coach for the 2 days leading up to the next game and then if we win everyone seems to stay away from those debates. Where are all of you JM haters now?

  102. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Bob McKenzie of the tsn hockey panel had a lot of positive things to say about the Habs. Most important was that our winning ways are not a fluke.

  103. WindsorHab-10 says:

    I’m right here. I still don’t think he’s a good coach.

    There. I said it.

  104. homerbowen says:

    Get rid of him. He has proven nothing in the NHL and has simply been riding the coat tails of a hot goalie.

  105. bwoar says:

    Totally agree on MAB, he’s not gonna play 20 mins a game on a Stanley Cup winner.  We can agree they did make the right choice in the end, it just took a while.  And JM’s reluctance to play O’Byrne was one of the truly WTF decisions of the 1st round.  As the Caps punched into our crease in Game 2 I was flipping out.  I still maintain Jacques takes a game or two to finish analyzing and THEN he acts…. haven’t been a fan of his, but I can’t argue with the winning.  He may even have figured out when to call timeouts, judging by this series.

    Absolutely clinging to the idea that Muller is a key cog behind the bench, but after all it’s the guys on the ice wearing the CH crest that have to do the job.

     

    *

    In real life my actual initials are CH.  My brother’s are too.  My dear old dad was actually named after The Rocket. 100 years of Habs fans here and counting.

  106. HabFanSince72 says:

    We could really use Laraque in this series.

    HA HA.

  107. notbigbird says:

    There are two sides to every story. Thanks for being one of the few to realize that. JM may do a lot of things right, but he doesn’t seem to be able to get the most out of all of his assets, and that’s too bad really. I am not aware of any other coach having had a problem with SK, for example.

  108. Chris says:

    Dave…I agree with much of the gist of your article on Sergei.  He has definitely paved his road out of town.

    But I still think Jacques Martin is getting off incredibly easy for something that is clearly an issue with him.  Thus far, the Montreal Canadiens have seen THREE players that have either quit on the team or been banished by the team; Guillaume Latendresse, Georges Laraque (who came to town with a sterling locker room repuration) and now Sergei Kostitsyn.

    In addition, we have seen numerous incidents with players like Andrei Kostitsyn, who confessed publicly that they had never been approached by Martin or the coaches to discuss why they had been demoted to the fourth line or benched altogether.

    Martin and his coaching staff seem to be terrible at communication with the players.  In the 25 years I’ve been following hockey, I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a team have to basically banish 3 players mid-season for quitting on the team.  That is a topic I would love to see discussed when these playoffs are over.

    When you factor in what appears to be an extremely disappointing record when it comes to developing the team’s young talent his season, we’ve either got some issues with the coaching staff that need to be addressed moving forwards or some issues with the scouting staff for drafting so many players with poor work ethics.

  109. pmaraw says:

    i think jm is sending a message, if you dont want to do what you gotta do to play here, then GTFO

  110. HabFanSince72 says:

    yeah, this team is just not showing enough character and motivation.

     

  111. TommyB says:

    You said “Martin and his coaching staff seem to be terrible at communication with the players.”  With all due respect to your 25 years of watching hockey, some people (like myself) might look at this situation and interpret it as the country club atmosphere in Montreal is finally coming to an end.  The key word in your statement is “seem”.  What seems to mean something to one, means an entire different thing to another.  The banishment of the three players you mention, IMO, is nothing more than a little tidying up after last summer’s total spring cleaning.

  112. Thomas Le Fan says:

    It became obvious to everybody but you apparently that Latendresse was never going to make it here for whatever reason. Laraque decided, on his own, that he didn’t need to do what he was being paid for and that he could play in this league as a skilled player and Sergei is having trouble seeing the puck with his head up his a**. And you’re blaming the coaching?  

  113. habsguy says:

    players with million dollar contracts shouldn’t need to be approached by anyone.  The K Bros or Kovy before them should take a look in the mirror….Plus I love the fact that Price who is itching to get into a game called SK out,  I wish the rest of the team would do the same..

  114. ed lopaz says:

    Habs hockey = Smart hockey we work as a team, and we win as a team. we play 5 man defence – not just 2. we play with energy, we play with Subban in Markov’s place (for now) – Pk could have been with us since the Olympics, but nevermind that.

    Chris – not sure if you are still there, but I want to respond as best as i can to your post.

     I want to discuss martin – because I don’t like him either – I don’t like his style – I don’t like the old school apprach to managing people and managing youth.

    I myself am a baseball coach. I coach 16 and 17 year old midget level players. I am a “players’ coach”. And when the season starts I always try to find a way to get to know my players.

    I was taught in fotball by my late father that there are “different” styles and tactics required to coach different players – so you need to get to know your team.

    back to Martin.

    what he did – it appears to me  – is outline and detail a specific system –

    which requires constant energy, dedication to detail and discipline

    martin managed to convince his leadership – Gionta, Gomez, Cammaleri, plekanec, Gill, Gorges, markov, etc

    to play this system – not once in a while – but always.

    the young guys were expecting to follow suit, the young guys were expected to do what they were told to do and help make the system work.

    pyatt is a perfect example – and he has fluorished under martin.

    gorges has become a great hockey player this year under martin.

    too many of the young guys coming up inthe habs system have a selfish me first attitude.

    latendresse and sergei – are hard to coach.

    the team is now a “UNIT” – they are acting as “ONE” – they are no longer playing as individuals.

    it is quite impressive actually and the ONLY WAY the Habs can win hockey games, in my opinion.

    therefore,

    I DO AGREE WITH THIS –  some issues with the scouting staff for drafting so many players with poor work ethics.

    I do not think you can blame the coach if the great leaders on this team are buying into his program.

    if Gionta and Gill and Gorges are complaining about the coach, then we have a problem.

    subban will fluorish under any system – when Leblanc get here he will also.

    it is critical for the longe term success of the habs for them to draft CHARACTER FIRST type players.

    as you said, scout and draft players with great work ethic – who also show huge upside in their skills.

    .

  115. Chris says:

    Yes, the relevance. 

    My discussion pertained to the proper use of assets for a professional sports team.  I’ve already stated in other posts that Sergei isn’t really going to help the team unless he plays on one of the top-three lines.  Given the play of the players in those roles, that is not going to happen, so I don’t mind Martin not playing Sergei.

    What I do mind is the public destruction of an organizational asset, either as a future roster player or a trade asset.  Is that more clear? 

  116. HabFanSince72 says:

    He is self-destructing.

    By the way, is that Mats  Sundin in your avatar?

     

  117. Chris says:

    Nope.

    Mats Naslund.

  118. HabFanSince72 says:

    I know.

  119. Chris says:

    So your comment was to try to paint me as a Leaf fan again?  I can see how that contributes to your argument.

    When logic fails, sling mud and hope it sticks.  Works in politics, maybe it’ll work here.

  120. Chris says:

    The relevance of that sentence?  Because I fail to see where I discussed the Habs’ character or motivation anywhere in that post.

    We’ve already established that neither of us respect the other’s opinion.  I think you can’t process discussions that even mention Sergei due to your dislike for Sergei.  You think I’m a Sergei-lover and can’t see reason. 

    Pretty much sum it up?  Good…let’s move on, so I don’t have to continue to reply to posts putting words into my mouth.

  121. HabFanSince72 says:

    The relevance?

    Do you think the Minsk Magician displays the kind of character and motivation, dedication to his teammates, and ability to overcome a setback, that are carrying this team through the playoffs?

  122. 123456 says:

    OMG i do not know why but that is the funniest thing i have seen in a long time!!

    secret mod

  123. pmaraw says:

    https://tips.fbi.gov/

    everyone go here and leave a tip about tampering with hockey games

  124. notbigbird says:

    It’s called communication. Humans do it all of the time. We use words not just actions.

  125. nunacanadien says:

    Let’s get the fact straight, the “spring cleaning” last year was to get rid of those players Gainey thought were not good enough to make his star horse Price shine, so L’Artiste who questioned using Price 4 up and 4 down, Koivu who tried to get the team behind Price and couldn’t, practically all the defense minus Gorges and of course not the rookies.  It is interesting that Gainey didn’t get rid of Markov, perhaps the Molson boys know talent when they see it.  But really, we could have kept Kovalev and Koivu the year before and still had enough to attact Gomez and Gionta, maybe not enough money for Cammaleri.  But honestly, imagine the likes of Koivu on a wing with Cammaleri or Gionta.  But if Gainey had listened to us, and played Halak, history would have been different and we’d be wondering why was Gainey thinking of conducting a “spring cleaning”

  126. nunacanadien says:

    Let’s get the fact straight, the “spring cleaning” last year was to get rid of those players Gainey thought were not good enough to make his star horse Price shine, so L’Artiste who questioned using Price 4 up and 4 down, Koivu who tried to get the team behind Price and couldn’t, practically all the defense minus Gorges and of course not the rookies.  It is interesting that Gainey didn’t get rid of Markov, perhaps the Molson boys know talent when they see it.  But really, we could have kept Kovalev and Koivu the year before and still had enough to attact Gomez and Gionta, maybe not enough money for Cammaleri.  But honestly, imagine the likes of Koivu on a wing with Cammaleri or Gionta.  But if Gainey had listened to us, and played Halak, history would have been different and we’d be wondering why was Gainey thinking of conducting a “spring cleaning”

  127. TommyB says:

    Geez Chris, did you not notice my “IMO”?  I stated that, didn’t I?  I find it hard to debate with someone who feels he must qualify his statements with “I have been watching hockey for 25 years!”  I won’t qualify my statements with my background.  I don’t feel that necessity.

    Now in response…Koivu (and God love him, but) had come to the end of the road with the Habs.  It is only my opinion, but I felt it was a mutual parting of ways and not part of the spring cleaning.  Kostopoulos, seriously, you had to admire his work ethic but you can’t tell me he meant that much to the club.  Bouillion was injury prone, maybe due to his size.  I think he has been adequately replaced.  And, Komisarek?  Doesn’t even merit a response from me aside from the fact that he left on his own, turning down a contract offer from Gainey.  And finally, any team would be in a world of trouble if they get a couple of  serious injuries at this time.  Serious injuries were the name of the game for the Habs all year long.  That’s why they are in this situation with callups to begin with.  Maybe the Habs will go farther than the Bulldogs…problem solved.

     

  128. HabFanSince72 says:

    “But if Gainey had listened to us, ….”

     

    Funniest thing I read on Habs I/O.

     

    Ever.

     

  129. HabFanSince72 says:

    Komisarek?????

    OK now I know you’re a Leaf fan.

  130. Chris says:

    Geez Tommy, maybe I used the line  “I have been watching hockey for 25 years!” to illustrate that I haven’t seen this situation in 25 years.  I was trying to illustrate how rare an occurrence it is when a team gets rid of three players.

    I post a lot…probably thousands of posts over the past three years.  That is the first time I’ve dropped that line.  So perhaps you can put that in context when you chastise me.

    EVERY post in here is an IMO…my opinion is no less or more valid than anybody else’s.  I try to add some context and support for argument and leave it up to others to interpret it.

    If you interpreted that as me being pretentious, that is your prerogative…there is really not much I can do about it.

  131. Chris says:

    Le sigh…you really, really don’t get it.

    I mention Komisarek as a consummate professional and that instantly makes me a Leaf fan.

    Because only a Leaf fan would recognize that Komisarek was clearly viewed as a leader on that team.  Or would observe that Komisarek was one of the most stand-up guys on the roster last season, always there to take the fall when the team played poorly.

    Only a Leaf fan would observe that Komisarek played through numerous injuries during his time here.  Or that he never, ever complained.  Only a Leaf fan would notice that he was throwing himself in front of shots all over the ice.

    Only a Leaf fan would notice that Komisarek was one of the few Habs that stuck up for his teammates during his tenure in Montreal.  Only a Leaf fan would notice that his coaching staff through so highly of him that they invited him behind the bench, the first player since Denis Savard in 1993 that I remember acting as a pseudo-coach while out with injury.

  132. fbkj says:

    “so L’Artiste who questioned using Price 4 up and 4 down, Koivu who tried
    to get the team behind Price and couldn’t”

    hands down the stupidest thing ive ever read on this site…

    the soap opera you are trying to spew is all in your head

    fail harder

  133. Chris says:

    Amongst the many players let go by the Habs in what you called a “total spring cleaning” were players like Koivu, Kostopoulos, Bouillon and Komisarek, consummate professionals in every sense of the word. 

    I would be cautious in merging the two discussions…those guys are above reproach when it comes to what you call a “country club atmosphere”.  And your impression of the “country club atmosphere” is no more based in fact than my impression that Martin and his staff are terrible communicators:  both of us are making judgements from outside the organization without any strong evidence to back our points up.

    You might be right that the banishment is no more than a little tidying up.  But the Habs are going to be in a world of trouble if they get a couple of injuries in these playoffs, as they will be prohibited from call-ups until the Bulldogs are out of the playoffs due to carrying two perfectly healthy players on the roster.

  134. Chris says:

    I think you hit the nail on the head with this comment:

    “I was taught in fotball by my late father that there are “different” styles and tactics required to coach different players – so you need to get to know your team.”

    As part of my duties, I have taught a lot of university students over the years…probably in the thousands, which means I’m getting too old for this business! ;)  As with coaching, you can’t teach every kid the same way:  some are visual learners, some are “hands-on” learners, while some are independent learners and others are group learners.

    What I see with Martin is that he has flourished with a particular type of player:  it is not surprising to me that Devils alumni like Gionta and Gomez, and players that would fit the Devils style of play (such as Pyatt, Gorges and Plekanec) have thrived this year.

    However, he has not shown the patience nor flexibility to deal with players that don’t fit that system:  Latendresse and Andrei Kostitsyn are not defensively inclined players by nature (although with maturity they can get there), while Sergei Kostitsyn is somebody that clearly grates Jacques Martin despite seemingly being a Martin style of player in many respects.

    Many said last off-season that Gainey would need more than a year or two to convert from an attacking team to a defensive shell team to fit Martin’s coaching style.  They are probably right, more right than I was willing to give credit for last year.  I really thought, based on Martin’s successes in Ottawa, that he was flexible enough to work with the parts he had.

    Unfortunately, we’re seeing the Florida version of Martin, where he struggled to turn square pegs (like the offensive potential of a Stephen Weiss) into the round hole that was his preferred defensive gameplan.

    I like what Sergei Kostitsyn CAN bring as a hockey player when his head is screwed on right, and other coaches have managed to corral his fiery personality.  But I can live with Martin wanting to get rid of him to continue to sculpt the team into something that befits his coaching philosophy.

    What I can’t live with is devaluing our prized prospects to the point that when we are forced to trade them, it is for other teams’ basket cases or cast-offs.  I think that Sergei Kostitsyn’s value in any trade packages this summer is virtually nil, as the rest of the league knows that he is done in Montreal and that his only other option is going to the KHL (which he might do anyways).  That is the crux of my disappointment…I don’t mind that he isn’t playing, but so much of this could have been handled so much better from the beginning of the season.

  135. punkster says:

    Chris, you still view this as solely an on-ice issue with SK, an issue that should have been fixed by the coaching staff. What if it involves something off-ice as well? I have to wonder why there are or were issues with the K Bros. or Laraque or Laps that the coaches couldn’t resolve? And all the guys that were let go last year, vets and young guys, did they have issues the coaches couldn’t resolve? I’m rambling here but I think what I’m working towards is this: shit happens, some players learn and develop and can be molded and remolded to fit different roles on different teams and some can’t, some learn how to adapt with experience and some become one-trick ponies. To simply lay blame (a wonderful passtime here at HI/O Central) on the coach is not seeing the whole picture. Much of the responsibility for the game rests on the player. How quickly and well does he learn, adapt, modify, improvise.

    Now in SKs case (and I guess to a degree AK as well) we have a player with obvious talent but who has not adapted to something new. Maybe he can’t learn as quickly as the others, maybe he doesn’t buy into his new role or expectations, maybe he is just immature, maybe he has influences on him outside the rink that interfere with his abilities. We don’t know these things just now so simply blaming the coaching staff is just grasping at straws or, again, participating in the blame game we do so well here.

     

  136. Chris says:

    I disagree that questioning this one aspect of the organization is grasping at straws.

    Like everybody, Martin is not perfect. He is going to have faults and weaknesses, both as a person and, more pertinent to this discussion, as a coach. If, and that is admittedly an if that can’t be proven by me although I have enough observational evidence to at least raise the issue, Martin IS struggling with player development, I think the Habs need to look at that in the off-season and see if there is anything that can be done to improve the situation…it could be as simple as telling Martin he has to improve in that area.

    If they instead decide that Martin is not in the wrong, then I think they need to re-think the organizational strategy when it comes to the draft. As opposed to drafting the best player available, perhaps they need to move to a system in which they draft the best available player that suits the team’s playing philosophy.

  137. Mad Habber says:

    Sergei Kostitsyn is an interesting case.

    Many of are wondering why he is constantly a target of Martin’s benchings, and just as many agree with Martin’s decisions on him.

    I’ve questioned his benchings sometimes, as I did with him benching O’Bryne.

    The difference between O’Bryne and Sergei though is O’Bryne didn’t make such a splash with it. He has now worked his way back into the line-up. While Sergei has carried on with a sense of entitlement (I’m mean, skipping out on extra practice, holding out)…

    I wonder though, if the send down at the beginning of the season hasn’t spoiled Sergei and Martin’s relationship. To the point where he has become uncoachable, and Martin, for his part doesn’t even want to coach him.

    That being said, I don’t want Martin to be fired. For a long time this team has been missing an indentity, and I think in large part it is do to the high coach turnover. I don’t believe you can coach a team well without a little security to make tough decisions like the one he’s made with Sergei. Sure maybe we’ve lost a potential good two way player, but further down the road, players are going to understand to play the coaches way or your going to be out of a job.

  138. SLONCOLD says:

    Loved the AK hit on letang yesterday(and after the hit…wahhhh i want a penalty for checking)!!! seems like a little bit of physical play can get the pens off their game.

    We need two more big games from Jaro and company. I gotta say JM is using his players well. He’s shutting down some of the best offesive units this year; let’s hope we don’t run out of magic and hopefully win a game and not make it another nail biter!!!!

  139. ed lopaz says:

    Habs hockey = Smart hockey we work as a team, and we win as a team. we play 5 man defence – not just 2. we play with energy, we play with Subban in Markov’s place (for now) – Pk could have been with us since the Olympics, but nevermind that.

    “seems like a little bit of physical play can get the pens off their game.”

    teams play the way their leaders play.

    keep pounding crosby, malkin, fleury, – we will wear them down.

    they are soft!

    the Pens weakness is that their leadership is soft and quite easily upset by the physical play (especially chippy play)

    you are ABSOLUTELY bang on!!

  140. habsman-itoba says:

    If they coulda sent Halak to the box for two, sure as sh*t they woulda.

  141. avatar_58 says:

    I have vertigo stuck in my head today….hehe

  142. smiler2729 says:

    Is that a Spacek joke?

  143. habitual says:

    The spirit of this club in the playoffs has been nicely captured by Matthew Darche:

    I wasn’t able to play last game, but tonight he (Martin) decided to play me and it’s
    nice to be able to reward him by having a good game.

    Coach, I am going to give back. I am going to show your faith in me is justified.

    We should be focusing on how Darche’s character (he at best a journeyman, holding on to his career as hard as he can) represents the epidemic of team, heart and spirit in the dressing room and in the team.

    But I can’t resist observing that Sergei has an immunity.

     

     

     

  144. smiler2729 says:

    Yeah the refs were BRUTAL.

    But if any of you SERIOUSLY think there is a Bettman/officiating conspiracy to get certain matchups for NBC or whatever, just remember the CAPITALS and the Ovenchicken are OUT so there goes that theory.

    Again, the refs are just BRUTAL and that’s all there is to it.

  145. Chris says:

    Yep.  I don’t believe in NHL conspiracies (they have far more to lose from such a risky endeavour than they could possibly hope to gain) when flat out referee incompetence is more than enough to explain things away.  :)

  146. Clay4bc says:

    And remember that the Capitals are out because of one man – Jaroslav Halak. He is also the reason we are 2-2 in this series. Hot goalies can foil the best laid game plans…and don’t kid yourself about huge sums of money (ie: what is at stake with a major US television contract) not influencing decisions.

    __________________________

    “Peoples will only be truly free when the last king is strangled by the bowels of the last priest” Francois Laignelot -

  147. Slovak says:

    Hi all,

    I am from Slovakia and watched the last game and every playoff Habs game so far. I must tell you Halak is amazing – not for catching almost all shots – but for the ability to come back after loss or total burnout, which did not happen so often. It means he is the real deal and tells you a lot about his psychical potential. And a superstar goalie is 80% about the ability to focus. You would be completely out of your mind to trade him. The goalie is the back bone of the strong team and you should keep him at all costs. He loves your town and people. It is not just about this season but about the constant improvement year after year. He is only 25 and he can handle all the pressure… Yes you should buy some forwards to speed up yout offence but not for the cost of Halak, who not only play magic but and that is most important – inspires the whole team – he gives your players energy to play at their full potential when they see what he is doing in nets for them. I think players like him and respect him and he does the same. All of this is evident from all postagme reactions of the team except the coach who is a little cold nose but it is ok.

    Halak is not there for the glory, he is out there because he loves the game.

    I tell you, you go over Pens and than there will be slovak friends against each other – Chara + Satan / Halak. And that will be harder.

    HABS FOR THE CUP – they already deserves it – not because of one man – because they play like a family and are ready to bring sacrifice for each other.

    Who care about stupid referees, Crosby or whoever – champions will overcome anything and will not cry – and that my friends you showed in the last game… COME ON MONTREAL COME ON

     

     

  148. HabFanSince72 says:

    Halak stopped 33/33 shots after letting in the first two.

    That is Patrick Roy-like.

     

  149. derfab says:

    From Montreal to Bratislava with love!

  150. TripleX says:

     

    Six games won in the playoffs and the first star EVERY WIN is Jaroslav Halak.  This has of course been a complete team effort but the rallying point is the Little General.  Without key saves at critical points that inspire the troops with the knowledge that no matter how badly outplayed and outshot they will always have a shot to win.  Confidence inspires the spirit and instills the fire to WIN.

     

     

     

    “Good judgement comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgement.”

  151. derfab says:

    The players don’t read this stuff. No matter how serious we are, this is just our cheap fun.

  152. habs001 says:

    scoring production has been poor all year

  153. Gr8stFranchizEvr says:

    A little perspective on the Sergei Kostitsyn situation from Bob McKenzie’s blog (TSN):

    http://www.tsn.ca/blogs/bob_mckenzie/?id=320748

     

    Basically, the problem stems from attitude and poor work ethic, and nobody wants the guy around, especially when they need a winning attitude and super-strong work ethic.

  154. avatar_58 says:

    No I’m serious!

    Hellloooo heloooooo I’m at a place called vertigoooo….

  155. smiler2729 says:

    Is that the Habs goal song again??? Cool.

  156. Jbird says:

    Ha!  I like Boone saying in ALN that they might as well have Stevie Wonder lace up the skates and ref a game.  

  157. PeterStone says:

    the worst refereeing ever. 2 Blind mice

  158. joeybarrie says:

    In the end I am glad we took the penalties the way we did, because we WON.

    But I was thinking last night, because of this obvious incompetence / bias / fix then the crowd should do something about it. Show that this type of thing will NOT be tolerated in this city. Going to the hot dog station and getting cup fulls of ketchup, mustard, (unless there are only packets I dont remember) cup fulls of water, half beers, hats, sox, undershirts, towels, ANYTHING we can get our hands on.

    Some sort of stance should be made. I’ll take a bench penalty for it. 21,000 towels, cups (hopefully full of condiments) stuff like that. I don’t support rioting, BUT I gotta say, to those who shelled out 8-10k for playoff tickets, and individuals who paid $200-$1500 to be there to witness such an OBVIOUS shameful black eye to the NHL. Those fans deserve better. The fans who pay to have center ice, versus, comcast, nhlnetwork and NHL.com just to make sure they can see EVERY GAME no matter what…. They (me) deserve better. People fork our $300 a jersey to show their support, THEY DESERVE BETTER.

    BUT I WILL SAY IT AGAIN….  LAST NIGHT…….. J U S T I C E.

    There may be other teams, but only ONE Club De Hockey…

  159. alestar says:

    Great win…exciting to the very end, but the reffing was atrocious…

    These guys make the CFL refs look like consummate professionals!

     

    XXIV…and counting

  160. Ian Cobb says:

    I found my spell check, so I re posted. But an official response and apology is needed to be delivered to the paying public by the NHL to address the shame full exhibition of officiating. This league is going down the toilet as far as refereeing is concerned. I sure hope it makes the front page this morning.

    We
    were kept on the edge of our seats most of the night, but would you
    have it any different. Now its a best of 3 series, only need to win two.

    Now
    for what I really want to say. There is a lot of NBC money at stake
    here. The big money for the owners in the league is in TV state side.
    And where there is money there is corruption, or at the least
    favouritism. I will leave you with that thought while I speak to the
    game tonight itself, and how it was managed by the officials.

    I
    have seen thousands of games in my lifetime, some rough, some dirty,
    some got right out of hand, some poorly officiated, but yes even
    referees have bad games.We always think that the ref missed a call or
    something during most games for one side or another. That’s just part
    of the game.

    But I have to tell you this. I have never seen a
    blatant spectacle of favouritism officiating like that in my entire
    life. It was worse than brutal.

    My opinion, the fix was in, no
    two referees could possibly be that incompetent, it made me sick. If
    Gauthier does not put in a formal request that these referees never see
    ice again. I will be very much disappointed in him.

  161. TommyB says:

    Excellent post Ian.  You found the correct way to highlight the situation by referring to the money.  Last night was so blatantly ridiculous in the officiating, even the CBC analysts spoke out about it.  Even going so far as to question Gionta, during an after game interview, about the one-sided calls.  Gionta displayed a lot of class by not responding directly to that question, but in his sidestepping answer it was clear that he, and the entire team, were not very impressed with officiating.

    You spoke of the NBC TV contract.  You are dead on with that assessment.  The sad thing here, is that none of the American TV networks really give a damn about hockey.  It’s still just a curiosity to them, rather than a legitimate major league sport.  Yet Bettman insists on chasing that elusive dream, to the point of embarrassment to the integrity of the game.  The other sad part, is that there are many, many, knowledgeable American hockey fans who deserve so much better.

  162. lenny says:

    somethings happening here and what it is aint exactly clear, there’s a man named Halak over there, telling Crosby he’s got to be ware…..

  163. Lafrich says:

    STOP…hey what’s that sound…Halak is kicking out another rebound…

  164. MikeMcLaren says:
  165. jimmy shaker says:

    Great post……the all knowing Micheal Farber….he makes my stomach turn! 

    How do those apples taste, Farber?

    Shaker

  166. HabFanSince72 says:

    Farber would know (if he knew anything) that there is a LONG tradition of littering the ice in Montreal. It only ended when the overshoe went out of favour as a winter-time item of clothing.

     

  167. Lafrich says:

    Excellent! I had forgooten about the Komisarek penalties in that game. The emotion was at a fever ptch at that point from what I remember. That was what kept me watching the game, and gave me hope.

  168. jimmy shaker says:

    There is a link on the NHL.com website’s main page on the bottom right hand side “contact us”, for all of us who want to send an email about last night’s disgusting display by the stripes.  I sent a scathing email, to which they will most likely laugh at and then laugh off.  But as a bunch of us have been wanting to do (send an email, a letter, a fax etc) I thought this might be the easiest.  I know one email won’t get anyone’s attention, but maybe a few hundred will open some eyes there.  Without a doubt the worst officiated game of all time, and we still beat them.  How do those apples taste, Sid, Pitts and Bettman?

    Shaker

  169. HabsFanInTampa says:

    Ian: You’re second to last paragraph says it all! The officiating was downright scandalous!

  170. Dintrox says:

    I thought game 2 SJ vs. the wings was poor officiating. Then I saw game 3 in Van vs. Hawks. exactly what happened to that memo about goalie interference the league sent out? However, the game last night was the worst called game I have ever witnessed! If Don Cherry a dyed in the wool Bruins fan calls out the refs then something must be wrong. Farber stops short of blaming the zebras but anyone watching that game could not deny the one sided reffing in that game.

    December 4, 2009 – Elmer Lach’s jersey took its rightful place with the Rocket’s in the rafters.

  171. Slovak says:

    Thank you, I was watching the last game till 3.30 in the morning, then I could not sleep and then I have to go working, but here in Slovakia it is like Montreal is our team, all people – hockey fans – stand by Jaro…

    COME ON MONTREAL COME ON


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