HIO show is now live with Jacques Demers as special guest

Jacques Demers, the last coach to lead the Canadiens to a Stanley Cup championship in 1993, is the guest on our second Hockey Inside/Out show that is now available on hockeyinsideout.com/show or by clicking on the “H Show” link to the right.

Demers, who is now a senator in Ottawa, joined Gazette sports editor Stu Cowan and columnist Dave Stubbs for a discussion looking back at that championship team and he also comments on the current Habs.

Demers talks about the great mix of francophone and anglophone players on that 1993 team and the important role character played on that squad. And he recalls telling the players before that season started that they were going to “shock the hockey world.”

They certainly did, winning 10 straight overtime games en route to the championship, and Demers shares some of his personal memories from that special night at the Forum when the Canadiens hoisted the Cup for the 24th time in franchise history.

A special thanks to all the HIO fans from across North America who emailed in their questions for Demers. The winner of the HIO gift bag is Chris Barnes of Winnipeg for sending in the following question, which Demers answers on the show:

“At what moment in the 1993 playoff run did it hit you that the team was going to win it all? For me it was when (Paul) DiPietro completed the hat trick to finish off the Nords in the first round.”

Chris Nilan was the special guest on the first episode of the HIO show. Look for the third episode in mid-April.

The Canadiens practised Monday in Brossard as they prepare for back-to-back games Tuesday in Pittsburgh and Wednesday in Boston.

Carey Price will get the start in net on Tuesday against the Penguins in a game that will be a “huge challenge for us,” coach Michel Therrien said.

“Right now this is the hottest team in the NHL,” Therrien said of the Penguins, who have won 12 games in a row.  

Rene Bourque, who has been out with a concussion, hasn’t skated since last Thursday when the Canadiens were on Long Island, N.Y.

“He doesn’t progress like we were hoping,” Therrien said. “So that’s the frustrating part with a consussion.”  

The other players not travelling with the Canadiens to Pittsburgh are Raphael Diaz, who is also out with a concussion, Ryan White (lower-body injury) and Brandon Prust, who suffered a first-grade separation of his left shoulder on March 9 against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Prust skated on his own on Monday with Pierre Allard, the Canadiens’ strength and conditioning coach.

“It’s coming along,” Prust said. “We’re getting there.

“We’re just making sure it’s going to be 100 per cent when … I get back. It’s not 100 per cent yet, but it’s getting close.”

Jeff Halpern, claimed off waivers Saturday from the New York Rangers, practised with his new teammates for the first time Monday.

The lines at practice were: Ryder-Plekanec-Gionta; Galchenyuk-Eller-Armstrong; Moen-Halpern-Dumont; Pacioretty-Desharnais-Gallagher. Blunden was the odd man out.

Defence pairings were: Gorges-Subban; Markov-Emelin; Tinordi-Bouillon; Weber-Kaberle.


  1. RetroMikey says:

    Montreal should still looking for a bigger, physical forward or two at the deadline, but Halpern fit their need for veteran depth up front in my opinion.
    And a big crunch DMan would also fill the void if Bergevin thinks this team can compete for a 25th Cup against the bigger teams like Boston or Toronto if we were to play against them in the playoffs.
    Yes, we made the playoffs, it’s a gimme, but can we progress past the second round with our current roster?

    “We will win the Cup one day only with ? in the nets “

    • deen says:

      And once again gionta cruising around with his head up his… Missing a glorious opportunity in front of the net!!!! Get in front of the net gionta!

  2. Lafleurguy says:

    I guess Radek Dvorak cleared waivers and is now a Red Wing.
    Ryan O’Reilly has had a decent start as a 5 million dollar player. 11 points in 12 games, including 3 goals.
    Do you think Andrei Kostitsyn can score a hat-trick in the playoffs again for the Habs? Can’t remember what escapades he and Sergei engaged in, in the playoffs last year that got them benched. Is Kovie done and unable to play NHL hockey? Can we lure Alexander Perezhokin back? Gotta leave no stones unturned!

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  3. Loonie says:

    There’s been a lot of talk that there won’t be many sellers at the deadline this season due to the compressed schedule.

    I disagree. There may not be a lot of trades but that won’t lower the number of sellers.

    The league’s teams will have around thirteen games remaining on their schedule come deadline day. Teams at the bottom of the standings could at best hope to make up around six to eight points on at best a couple of teams ahead of them in the standings. As it stands today there are in fairness only four teams who are eight points out of a playoff spot. But the dust will settle this weekend and there could be as many as eight teams who are at least eight points out of a playoff spot come Sunday evening.

    And then you have teams like the Sharks who while in a playoff spot have already started to sell. The Islanders who are within striking distance of a playoff spot but have shown no interest in making the playoffs for quite some time. The Hurricanes who are without Cam Ward, the Stars who have started selling already.

    There could be as many as twelve teams selling at this time next week.

    • Mattyleg says:

      But what about The New NHL Of Parity?

      There is so little separating the teams that selling-off of players isn’t such a given anymore, especially considering the effects of injuries on teams. We finished last in the East last year, and didn’t do any huge selling, and look at us now.

      Most of our underperforming came from injuries (and the lack of a decent coach/GM/team vision etcetc) so I think that we’ll see a few UFAs move, but not a lot of movement otherwise from ‘selling’ teams.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • Loonie says:

        Our team last year was without Markov and Gionta for the large majority of the season and was playing two rookies on defense.

        That situation is not unlike that of the Panthers this season but others like the Coyotes, Flames, Lightning, Flyers and many more aren’t operating in like circumstances.

        I’d be surprised if there were twelve sellers and spoke of that number as a ceiling, but I don’t think we’ll be seeing one or two teams selling. I think the number will be higher.

        Teams like Vancouver and Chicago have a cap crunch next off-season and like the Penguins will probably add pieces for a run. Teams like the Bruins and Red Wings are always adding pieces at the deadline and the logjam in the southeast will probably lead to some moves.

        I don’t think this will be a quiet deadline, and I think the summer will be busier.

    • mdp2011 says:

      I agree with most of your post, except where you say the Sharks are sellers. The Sharks are not sellers, they simply took a pending UFA depth 6-7 defenseman who wasn’t playing a lot and turned him into potentially two 2nd round picks. They are also trying to do the same thing with another UFA guy who isn’t playing much and has zero goals this year and turn him into some future assets. I don’t call that selling, I call that smart asset management.

      • Loonie says:

        Can they not be selling and managing their assets intelligently?

        Next year if they trade Thornton, Marleau and Pavelski will it be smart asset management and not selling?

        Different players I know, but you can have both, it doesn’t have to be one or the other.

        • mdp2011 says:

          I guess what I am trying to say is that I don’t consider it selling in the traditional sense, where a team that is not making the playoffs trades all its pending UFA’s for future assets.

  4. HabinBurlington says:

    So regarding all the Semin we saw over the previous page of this thread. I think he gets a bit of a bad rap regarding playoff scoring.

    He has a career regular season scoring average of .877 points per game. Prior to last seasons playoffs with the defensive mindset of Hunter he was at a career clip of .81 points per game in the playoffs. He has as a result of last year dropped to .666 pts per game.

    I still think greatly overpaid with too much term, but still a pretty good player.

    • Mattyleg says:

      A very fluid player.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • shiram says:

      The new CBA makes us think these guys are getting overpaid, but Semin can score 40 goals in a season, and comes close to being a PPG player.
      Those guys get paid, and without the benefit of giving later years at minimal pay, we get their real cap hits.
      Also was UFA.

  5. Phil C says:

    Last year they were a last place team. The year before that, they took the Stanley Cup Champions to overtime in game 7. Last year is meaningless. Here are the players they have added since last year (including injuries), not including Ryder or Halpern:
    Markov, Gionta, Prust, Galchenyuk, Gallagher, Bouillon, Tinordi, Armstrong
    These players have improved significantly since last year:
    Eller, Emelin, Diaz, Subban, Bourque
    That is over half the roster that is new or upgraded. Forget last year, compare them to the opposition.

    Boston are unproven in net and are vulnerable if Seidenberg or Chara get injured. That’s why they traded for Kaberle in their playoff run. They are 24th in PP, I think because their defense sucks offensively. In a series against Montreal, special teams could be the difference in Montreal’s favour.

    Pittsburgh are a two line team. Montreal are a 3 line team when healthy. Which Fleury will Pittsburgh get? If he plays like last year, they are gone in the first round.

    Ottawa are relying on goaltending and defense right now. They have 6 loser points and 4 s/o wins propping them up in the standings. There are no shootouts or loser points in the playoffs. Montreal dominated them the last two times they played.

    The Habs are not perfect, but neither are their opponents.

    • Loonie says:

      Exactly right, so I won’t be jumping off of a cliff if Bergevin trades a second and/or third rounder for a rental.

      Not only does he have the picks and prospects to make a couple of moves but this team as you said is as well positioned as anyone to make a run.

      If the goal is a championship, why ignore the opportunity to win one.

  6. HabFanSince72 says:

    How to choose who to cheer against in the playoffs a handy guide.

    1. Teams based in Boston MA (Boston).
    2. Teams that were built through tanking (Pittsburgh, Chicago).
    3. Teams whose success would please the league (NY Rangers, LA).
    4. Teams that wouldn’t have a Stanley Cup Parade if they won because their towns don’t even have a main street and even if they did no one would go (Anaheim, New Jersey).
    5. Teams whose fans are so deluded that if someone wrote an oral history of their team’s support it would be called “Not Just a River in Egypt” or “I’m Ready for my Close-Up Now, Mr Burke” (Toronto).
    6. The remaining US teams (The remaining US teams).
    7. Teams that aren’t the Montreal Canadiens or Winnipeg Jets (Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Ottawa).
    8. The Winnipeg Jets (Winnipeg).

  7. Jan_pronounced_Yan says:

    Regarding the trade deadline and what the Habs should do:

    I don’t think anyone including Bergevin expected the Habs to be in the position they are in right now. I don’t think anyone seriously expects us to win the cup this year either.

    As it has been mentioned numerous times already by other posters, Bergevin should not sell off high picks or prospects unless he is landing a player that will help them BEYOND this season.

    That being said, with the market appearing very costly (Doug Murray going for 2 2nds? Brendan Morrow for a top prospect?) maybe the Habs should capitalize on this and sell off some of their aging players.

    Markov could net a king’s ransom at the deadline. Gionta could bring back quality assets. Maybe Moen can net us something. If we traded Markov, we could slide Kaeberle back into the lineup to take some pressure off and still have a PP d-man. Trading Gionta could open up a spot for Kristo if he is signed.

    These moves would open up more playing time for younger players in the playoffs (which is what we should be trying to do at this point) and could really help us going forward.

    If Bergeving made those types of moves, he could then use the excess picks to acquire some tougher rentals to help us out right now (later picks).

    • Loonie says:

      Good luck selling to the fans that you want to rid your team of Markov coming off of a last place season in a year when you’ve rebounded into first place in your division.

      Creative idea, not very practical though.

  8. Stevie.Ray says:

    Galchenyuk has now played 71 games this season. He’s been playing pretty much non-stop since August. I imagine he is somewhat mentally and physically fatigued, but this is good for him. He’s learning how to deal with the everyday grind of the NHL.

    • Loonie says:

      He’s been playing 11-15 minutes with the Habs as opposed to 20+ with the Sting.

      I think he’s fine.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        I would think he is finding these 11-15 mins. per game just as grinding if not more so than the 20+ in Sarnia. I don’t think Stevie is disparaging Galchenyuk as being completely fatigued, he uses the term somewhat, and I suspect he is Somewhat correct. 🙂

        • Loonie says:

          We disagree on this. He’s a young player in a pro league for the first time and learning every day.

          I don’t think this season is wearing on him yet.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Agree, and considering he is coming off a year with so little hockey played, it is a testament to his conditioning and the fact he is a “Gym Rat”.

      This year should prove fruitful in his development.

  9. habstrinifan says:

    Uncle Sam Needs YOU YOUNG MAN!….. ooooops wrong flag.
    Uncle Harper Needs you young Man.

    Sutter at the White House with Obama in the corners. You know Obama’s coming out hurt ..and puckless.

    I can see international incident from a mile away.

    Forget the Boston/Habs tilt tomorrow guys…rush to your nearest recruitment centre and sign up. We may have a full-scale war on our hands soon. At least then I could do inflict real bodily harm to that Edwards guy legally.

  10. Mattyleg says:

    Going to be interesting tonight.

    The Pens are good, but I’ve found them very beatable. They are dangerous on the break, but their back end isn’t that intimidating (not just physically). They give up lots of goals, and if you can shut them down and not get sucked into their fast-breaking style, then it’s not such a tall order.

    Glad we’re playing them now before Morrow and Murray fully find their feet with the team system.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • Kooch7800 says:

      They might be better with the new additions though. Murray on D will really help them….more than Morrow in my opinion.

      Hopefully those two screw up the chemistry LOL

      “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • 2mins4lookinsooogood says:

      Matty, the Pens have turned a corner though – since the sloppy game against the Habs they are a much lower scoring/against team.

      Very likely another 2-1 game

      “Don’t crush that dwarf Alex Henry, hand me the pliers”

  11. You’ve got to think Toronto has already peaked this year. They’re 3-3-4 in their last 10 games, and have two injured defencemen. I don’t think Reimer or Scrivens have what it takes to take them all the way.

    But the most telling thing for me: they’re just a +4 on the season. That tells me that they’ve won a lot of one-goal games, and lucked into a lot of wins that could easily have been losses. Just as Montreal’s comparatively decent +/- last year screamed that we had a better team than the standings indicated, IMO a +4 over 33 games indicates that most of their games were a 50/50 coin toss. That amounts to scoring 0.12 more goals per game than their opponents. In contrast, we’ve got a +21 right now, and there’s a huge difference between our 20-6-5 record and their 17-12-4.

    Mike Boone: “With Gainey at my side, I’d walk into any dark alley in the world.”

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