Look who’s back


Former Hab Chris Nilan joins The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs and sports editor Stu Cowan this week to discuss the Habs, Montreal mayor Denis Coderre, and his new book, Fighting Back: The Chris Nilan Story


  1. Say Ash says:

    I mean, really – is there anything better than Rob Ford?

    At a media scrum this morning:

    Ford claims he never said “I want to eat your *****” to a former female staffer, an allegation contained in the court document.
    “I’m happily married, I have more than enough to eat at home.”

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      His fans will only love him even more.

      Remember that conservatism today isn’t conservatism in the usual sense (prudence, common sense). It’s defined by shared resentments.

      • HabinBurlington says:

        Thankfully it is just those damn conservatism folks with issues!

        • DipsyDoodler says:

          Point is that Rob Ford is not a conservative by any reasonable definition of the term. The movement he heads, call it what you will, is more interested in trolling liberals than in prudent governance.

          • HabinBurlington says:

            I frankly just think he is a bumbling idiot. I no longer give a crap about what politician leads what supposed group, they all think their sh%t doesn’t stink anymore and seem to think their party is the annointed one. Tired of all the parties, period.

            Just as I am tired of all politicians.

    • Mattyleg says:

      That’s gold, Jerry.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

  2. Forum Dog says:

    Been a lot of Yakupov talk on these boards recently. Most of it was tongue in cheek (i.e. Desharnais for Yakupov and a 2nd), but it did get me thinking about what it would take to get him in Habs jersey. I’ll qualify that by saying I am not sure they (or the fans) would want him and his baggage, but there is no question he is a very talented young player.

    So the question I have is: Would you trade Pacioretty for Yakupov? The way I see it, he would be the only piece the Habs have that a) might be appealing to Edmonton, and b) might be expendable if you were getting an offensive winger in return.

    Obviously there are contract issues that might come into play, but on player ability and potential alone, would this be a reasonable trade?

  3. WindsorHab-10 says:

    Ted Nolan was royally screwed by the NHL & seems like there was a conspiracy to keep him out. Happy he’s back & I hope he succeeds. Good call by Lafontaine.

    • HabsFanInTampa says:

      I was living in Rochester New York at the same time Ted Nolan was successfully coaching the Sabres in Buffalo. The rumor at the time, and I’m not insinuating that it’s true, was that Nolan was having an affair with Dominik Hasek’s wife. Thus him being fired and not being picked up by another team for him to coach. Glad he’s back though, he brought much success to the Buffalo Sabres.

    • Mattyleg says:

      He did a two-season stint with the Islanders from 2006-08 don’t forget.
      I wonder what his deal is.
      He got the Isles to the playoffs in his first season, then just missed in his second.

      Snow fired him, but didn’t give a reason.

      Any ideas why?

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

  4. DipsyDoodler says:

    Nolan to bring back John Scott and, possibly, Patrick Kaleta:


    John Scott’s first game back will be against the Leafs on Friday – there will be mayhem.

  5. Habsrule1 says:

    First off…hate Kadri.

    The Grandlund hit was hard and heavy, but it didn’t look that bad to me. If he came off his feet at all, it was just barely…and I think the puck was right there. If anything, maybe a charge? Not sure it deserved a 5 minute penalty.
    No suspension.
    The Backstrom hit was much worse. Looks like he’s going to just go right by and he goes out of his way to wind up and contact the head.
    1-2 games max, unfortunately.

    More importantly, who the hell voted yes in the pool?!? 330 votes?!?
    Show yourselves!

    Go Habs Go!!

    “Fans are great, but the quickest way to start losing is to listen to them.” – Sam Pollock

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Agree, the thing about the hit on Grandlund, this is the hit which I think is so different from the 70’s to todays hockey. You know you have the player completely vulnerable, the choice becomes do I hit to hurt or just rub him out.

      Todays players (at the urging of their coaches since they started hitting) seems to be take advantage of the scenario and beat the living snot out of the player.

      Not all players do this, but those who want to seem to be almost rewarded by their coaches for making these kinds of hits. Grandlund had just played the puck, he was open for contact, and Kadri chose to crush him. I don’t like this hit, but the league has endorsed this hit and i am surprised he was given a match penalty. Perhaps the refs realized they missed the call on the goalie hit.

      • Kooch7800 says:

        Kadri will get filled in sooner or later. I would prefer it being done by a hab. You take cheap shots at players all the time someone isn’t going to let us when they catch you with your head down or in a vulnerable position. Kadri is a POS

        “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • Caesar says:

      I think the Granlund hit was targetting the head. Pretty evident on the slowmo replay but not sure if it was actually a concious decision on Ad-nauseum’s part

  6. Psycho29 says:

    So Kadri gets 2 minutes for the hit on Backstrom and 5 and the game for the hit on Grandlund.
    But his hearing is for the 2 minute infraction and not the one he got tossed for.

    This sums up what is wrong with the league/officiating

  7. habsguru says:

    i like Nolan, and think he deserves an honest shot, however, since his first stint, and the rumors around his departure, he has typically been set up to fail or given a very short leash, hence the Cunny tag. i would trade MT for Nolan in a second

  8. habsguru says:

    Nolan = Cunnyworth the 2nd

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I didn’t realize Nolan was unable to speak English with the local media in Buffalo, also were all those years he previously coached in the NHL wiped off his record thus making him a rookie NHL head coach? Was his Coach of the Year award also taken away?

    • Strummer says:

      Cuuneyworth was recently hired as a scout by the Sabres.
      Some felt he was being positioned to take over the coaching reins before the house cleaning on Tuesday.
      I wonder how his role will change now.

      “It’s just an opinion – I could be wrong”

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Cunneyworth was in a bad position in Montreal for sure, but he didn’t help himself with his performance coaching an admittedly dysfunctional team. I doubt he gets another shot.

      • Kooch7800 says:

        Cunneyworth also got undermined by PG and had no power as a coach and the players new he wasn’t going to last.

        The entire thing was handled incorrectly. They should have let JM coach until the end of that season

        “Keep your stick on the Ice”

  9. habsguru says:

    Nolan named as “interim coach”

  10. Ian Cobb says:

    Stu and Dave, Another great Hockey Inside Out Video.


  11. Phil C says:

    I understand the LaFontaine hiring, but the Nolan hiring I don’t quite follow. They way Buffalo have dumped all their veterans, how surprised should they be with where they are in the standings? It seems like a classic tank strategy, so I don’t see how it’s the coach’s fault.

    Secondly, wouldn’t you want the new management to choose the coach? I know they gave Nolan the interim title, but he may take the decision away from LaFontaine if the Sabres somehow start playing well. I get the feeling that ownership has their hands on the reins more than they should.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Lafontaine is part of the new mgmt as President of Hockey Ops. I also heard some talk about how Rolston apparantly had some questionable tactics and that it was quite well known the players had no respect for him.

      I think Nolan will do an excellent job. What is interesting, is he had recently been in upper mgmt. for the Sabres AHL affiliate team. When Pegula purchased the Sabres, one of the first things he did was move the entire mgmt of that team into the Sabres front office, thus eliminating Nolan’s job. I think it is nice that the Sabres are giving him a crack at this. Muckler and Nolan were quite at odds, and I still maintain he was somewhat blackballed by the “old boys network” within the NHL.

      • Phil C says:

        Interesting about Rolston. It didn’t take long to lose the room.

        Coaching is hard enough without an interim label. I am sure he is happy for the opportunity, but its not the best of circumstances.

      • montreal ace says:

        Muckler called Nolan a GM killer, because Nolan went over Muckler’s head concerning D Hasek. Nolan treated Hasek like all the other players, while Hasek felt he was a diva. Ted Nolan always seemed to get a lot out of the teams he coached, it’s going to be an interesting back to back against the Leafs, beginning Friday. Nolan has also done great charity work, for aboriginal youth for quite a few years. He has a very interesting story about some of his workout routines a a young man. I like the man and hope he does well.

    • 24 Cups says:

      They can say what they want about Regier but he at least left the team with a stable of good prospects, future picks as well as the Miller and Moulson cards to play in February. Their future is certainly brighter than Calgary’s.

      The darkest just before daw cliché is certainly true for Buffalo. Now let’s see if Lafontaine can pick a decent GM.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      It appears to be a short term PR move at best as a Sabres season ticket holder survey showed about 30% were not going to renew.
      If they ever make the playoffs they have to keep Nolan.
      Most likely they will not and a new coach will be an easier sell. Then maybe..if PR is an issue, they keep Nolan around as some type of Ambassador or whatever

  12. habsguru says:

    kadri running around like he’s a bruin. puke! listenen to his pod interview with Cabbie yesterday (from the summer), what an arrogant Dbag. pride of TO he is.

  13. Maritime Ronn says:

    Is there anything more pathetic than the Toronto Star?

    ” Kadri basically ran over Backstrom in the first period.

    The replays appear to show Kadri pulling his elbow into his body as he approached Backstrom, something that may bode well for him as the NHL reviews the play.”
    Is it the water, or a lack of qualified optometrists?
    Kadri’s elbow was out, and worse is that he followed through with the elbow to Backstrom’s head.


    Then this from the Leafs Captain… who has all the characteristics of the ‘Missing Link’ in the theory of evoluton:

    ““I think he gets a lot of credit for his skill, but not enough credit for as hard and physical as he plays.”

  14. habsguru says:

    doesn’t say if it’s a phone hearing (less than 5 games) or an in person hearing (5 plus games). also, no mention of the hit on Granlund??????

  15. HabinBurlington says:

    The NHL will have a meeting with Kadri regarding his hit on the Minnesota goalie, interesting the memo from the NHL mentions nothing about the hit on Granlund.


  16. 24 Cups says:

    There’s lots of talk about the ice time allotted to Subban and Markov. I found this tidbit to be interesting. Ryan Suter played 36 minutes last night in an overtime game. His ATOI so far this year is 29.5 which is damn close to half a game.

    Jonas Brodin (the most underrated young Dman in the league?) has the exact same ATOI stat as PK Subban (24.5)

    • Phil C says:

      I forget where I read it, but they were talking about not all NHL management agrees that a defensemen should ever be playing 30 minutes a game in any normal circumstance, especially over a 82 game schedule. I think the Habs would fall into this category. Most of the top teams tend to spread out the ice time among defensemen. Both Anaheim and Tampa have no one over 23 minutes/game.

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        hi phil

        It might depend on the Dman-does he conserve energy well – his skating either fluid or more labored – how many energy sapping hits he’s involved with (Suter is way down there) – does he rush the puck- and how much PP time he plays as those are much easier minutes.
        Suter plays an average of over 4 minutes of PP time per game placing him 9th in the NHL in that category

        • Phil C says:

          That’s fair and a lot of teams allow it. However it is also reasonable to spread ice time around if you can. A lot of people were talking like it is some kind of huge mistake to not play PK 30 minutes a night when it is common practice in the NHL. There are plenty of bigger things to criticize Therrien about than that. Like the break out for example, they look so disorganized with too many icings.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      I think there are a hanful of dmen who seem to have an innate ability to play “quiet” big minutes. I watched a great deal of the Wild/Leaf game last night and Suter to me is one of these dmen. Almost like Lidstrom, in that you don’t see him running around expending extra energy. He is so smart on the ice that he can find ways to almost rest while playing. I don’t mean that in a lazy way, but rather he plays so smart that he doesn’t always have to be skating full out.

      I think Markov is somewhat similar.

    • Eddie says:

      I think it comes down to mostly penalty kill time, and so far we are doing very well there without Subban, so Therrien is under no pressure to change things up.

      If I’m coaching the other side, I get the puck down on Murray’s side, one low on the side boards and one player against the boards between the corner and the net. This exposes Murray’s lack of mobility because he can not pivot well enough to cover in that situation.

      The Habs signed Murray to kill penalties and to play a physical game.

      I know he can play physical, but I have a big problem playing anyone on the penalty kill who lacks mobility to stop and start, change directions, pivot, and therefore react without over committing to the puck.

      Maybe Murray will play well in the short term, but his poor skating must catch up to him as the season extends into the winter months.

  17. 24 Cups says:

    The Habs are approaching the ¼ mark of the schedule so I thought it might be interesting to look at two statistics that may be a harbinger of the Habs ultimately attaining a playoff spot this season.

    Elliotte Friedman has stated that just three of 32 NHL teams at least four points out of a playoff spot on Nov. 1 recovered to make the playoffs from 2005-06 to 2011-12. That’s in the 10% range. I think most readers’ first impression would be to say that’s impossible, especially based on such an early date. However, I assume that Friedman’s notion is correct. As of Nov 14th, that would mean three Eastern teams are already out of the playoffs – Buffalo (9), Florida (12) and Columbus (13). Columbus is just five points back with a game in hand. I also give them the benefit of the doubt based on last year’s performance. Montreal is still holding its own despite an extended losing streak and injuries to four regulars. Maybe three point games aren’t that bad after all!

    The second relevant stat is a team’s GD at the end of the season. Using the same time period, 96 teams qualified for an Eastern playoff spot in the overall standings. Only three teams missed the playoffs despite having a plus GD. Six teams still made the playoffs even though they had a negative goal differential (two of the six were Montreal, 2006 and 2010). That’s in the 6% range.

    Montréal reaches the 20 game mark on Saturday. Regardless of the outcome, the team will still be playing .500 hockey with a plus GD. Briere, Prust and eventually Emelin are all returning to the line-up. Carey Price, Andrei Markov and Tomas Plekanec have been lights out so far. All of the kids (including Bournival) seem to be taking the next step. Max Pacioretty, the major underachieving player on the roster, can only get better as he recovers and the team heads into the second quarter. Some fans may only see the negatives so far this year but I think the points I have made are realistic grounds for optimism.

    • Cal says:

      Habs definitely need to perform well against other eastern teams in order to get into the mix. The disappointing thing about the other night was Price’s excellence didn’t result in a win. Scoring is a big problem, but there is hope. Emelin’s return makes the Habs tougher to play against.
      I definitely want to see the Habs scorers get going. Bourque and Patches really need to get going.

      • Kooch7800 says:

        I think you need to add some names to that list of players that need to get their offense going….Briere, DD, Gionta and even lately Pleks.

        “Keep your stick on the Ice”

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Interesting stats 24, the additions of Emelin, Prust and Briere should help. Good read.

      Morning bud!

    • JF says:

      Interesting stats, Steve. Another indicator that is usually important is how teams perform against division rivals. So far the Habs are 0-2-1 against our own division. This certainly suggests we’ll finish well down in our division and will be scrapping for one of the two wild card spots.

      • 24 Cups says:

        Jane -Totally agree. I forgot to mention in my conclusion that I was basing all of my points on the personal notion that Montreal started the year on the premise that they would be a bubble team. Worst case scenario is 7th or 8th, best case 3rd in the division.

        The new playoff format is a bit of a double whammy for 7th and 8th seeded teams.

    • rljmartin says:

      Scoring is a problem especially with a lamentable performance like the one against TB. Play 10 to 15 minutes including OT and see if you can win. A lot of people complaining here about DD and Briere or Murray the snail but so many just did not show up on Tuesday.

      TB showed us that another team’s speed and jump can make Habs look slow. Talk about a non-physical performance, 18 hits with 6 of them dished out by Chucky and Eller. Makes you wonder if there is a place for a guy like Max Pac in todays NHL. Sure hope it is because he is not 100% yet.

      So what is my point? Quit ragging on players because the whole team has had too many nights like Tuesday already. Solution must come from management.

    • rhino514 says:

      Agree with all your points, the team has weathered the storm more or less well (incredibly well until six games ago.
      I´ve always thought the team is quite solid when healthy.
      One worry is, how will Emelin play for the rest of the year? I think this is key.
      The third line centre is the other worry, but there we have some decent options (Briere, Chucky to centre and Prust moving up, or even DD rebounding)

    • jimmy shaker says:

      Ken Holland of the wings also has a stat that he likes to go by as I’ve read in the detroit free press……..he say’s if your team is in a playoff spot come the u.s thanksgiving, then that is a good indication the team will be in the dance come april, and obviously if your not in the mix, then you will most likely miss out. Similar storyline, but 99% of the time the stats don’t lie.

      Shaker out!

  18. Hobie Hansen says:

    I caught a bit of the leafs game last night. I saw both Kadri hits. He better get a couple games for the hit on Backstrom! Not only did he run him, he went out of his way to hit him hard. Kadri’s elbow made contact with his head and then Backstrom’s head bounced off the ice.

    I’m still hoping that either Subban, Emelin or Murray demolishes him with a hit when the Leafs are in Montreal on November 30th. I’ll be there that night too. :-).

    I don’t think Kadri will drop the gloves cuz he’s chicken! He already backed down from Gallagher lol.

    • Maritime Ronn says:

      The only problem with that is then you have the goons running around like Orr, McLaren, Fraser, and the Clarkson addition.
      For that game, it would be nice to have Tinordi play with Murray on the 3rd pair.

    • 24 Cups says:

      Kadri might be the first player to get suspended for his second infraction (Granlund) based on his previous history that was earlier in the game when he ran the goalie (Backstrom).

      Kadri has a ton of talent, with lots of skill and flash. Alas, I think he’s starting to develop into another Ken Linseman.

      The powers to be are quite happy running a league that is based on an element of violent behaviour. That’s not about to change anytime soon. Therefore, you don’t retaliate against players such as Orr, Parros or Neil. You make the other team learn a lesson by running guys like Kessel, Plekanec and Spezza.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Hobie, congrats on getting tickets for that game, hope the boys play well and you can enjoy the electricity of Sat. night hockey in Montreal when the Leafs are in town.

      Sounds like a great night!

  19. habsguru says:

    stirring the pot here, but if those two hits were by PK, he would be sentanced to prison for 3-5 years.

  20. HabinBurlington says:

    Looks like Philly is starting to find their legs, 3 wins in a row. I doubt Buffalo can completely turn it around for this season, but I expect to see an improvement in their play. What is interesting is this weekend they have back to back games with Toronto. Nolan will have those Sabres fired up for those games.

    My only point is that some of the current bottom feeders in the East may start creeping up the standings.

    Hopefully Habs can get things going.

  21. rljmartin says:

    My what short memories you have… Leaf Kadri will probable be suspended for exhibition games next year.

    Go Shanni go!!!!!

  22. Maritime Ronn says:

    The video with several angles of the vicious Kadri elbow to the head on a vulnerable and unsuspecting goalie Nicky Backstrom.


    Interestingly enough, Kadri was only given a minor penalty for “Goaltender Interference”

    If that wasn’t enough, little weasel Kadri pulled another stunt in the 3rd period leaving his skates and delivering another head shot where again, the head was the pricipal point of contact.


    For that, he received a Match Penalty.

    Of course being a Leaf and NHL darling, don’t be surprised if nothing happens, or a little slap of 1 game or 2 at most.

    The nhl.com headline says it all:
    ” Wild’s Backstrom leaves game after collision”

    • Cal says:

      The lack of response from the Wild on Kadri after the Backstrom hit led to Kadri’s next assault. He shouldn’t have been able to skate away from that.

      • Dust says:

        but that isn’t the code. The response would have been for them to send out a goon to fight a goon from toronto. You don’t go after skilled players. Kadri would have still been out there running around like an idiot with Orr and Mclaren to fight his battles for him. That is the stupid code in the nhl

  23. habsguru says:

    Kadri should get 7, but will get 1 game, 2 tops.

  24. habsguru says:

    yes, but you have to consider the Leaf clause, where the league gives them a pass on any significant suspensions because they haven’t done squat since 1967

    • Dust says:

      just like they reduced Clacksons suspension. wait, what they gave him the full ten games? oh yeah its just a made up thing that the league suspends differently based on the team they play on.
      Just like all the calls go against the habs according to all hab fans, yet according to other team fans habs get away with murder.
      Refs make and miss calls. Its the way it is.
      League disipline really is quite random and has nothing to do with what team a player plays on but more about how big of a star said player is.

      • habsguru says:

        likely because of the joke that Kessel received… oh no, not a preseason suspension? the 10 games was madatory, and not subject to increase or decrease. the only reason the Bissonnette suspension was reduced is because there was no video footage to support the timing of him leaving the bench.

        • Dust says:

          Like I said, Less about what team said player is on but how much of a star said player is. Kessel is star, hence they don’t want him suspended. If that was Bozak swinging his stick he would have been suspended for regular season games.
          Kadri, being a first time offender and not a star, will get 2-3 games

  25. Bash says:

    Watched both hits several more times:
    On Backstrom – 5 games minimum (no pressure from another player and raised elbow to initiate contact – player concussed(?) and left game)
    Second hit – 2 games (lead with shoulder but jumped and contacted head – no injury “as of yet”)

    “If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” (anon)

  26. Habfan17 says:

    If you want rats like Kadri out of the game, or to play within the rules then when they do break them, two things need to happen.
    One, they need to throw the book at the player. Like 20 games for intentionally targeting the head of Backstrom last night with no first offence crap! Second, fine the team $100,000 for the first offence, and raise it for every subsequent offence. Obviously having an enforcer does no good to deter these rates as they only end up fighting the enforcer from that team!


    • jon514 says:

      I like the idea of the league coming down REALLY HARD on first time offenders.

      When I was living in BC they were fighting drunk driving and they had a policy of a $4000 dollar fine and a loss of license for 9 months for a first time offense. People were talking about it all the time and I think it’s the first real enforcement against drunk driving that I have seen make an impact.

      Make it so painful financially and reputation-ally for first time offenders that we think of all of them like Cooke and Kaleta and I doubt they do it again.

    • Dust says:

      I agree, this getting off easy cause you are a first time offender is dumb.

  27. Cal says:

    Another fun HIO show. Thanks to Stu, Stubbs and Knuckles for a great way to start Thursday morning.

    My take on the negativity Montreal-centric surrounding the Habs:
    Have a gander at all the bs this city is dealing with right now. Corrupt politicians, crumbling infrastructure, and incredibly high taxes. A totally racist provincial government trying to disguise that racism by being “secular”.
    Social media isn’t the problem; the society at large is.

    • DipsyDoodler says:

      Most of the whiners on the HIOtariat (thanks whoever came up with that) don’t even live in Montreal. Even if they did, hard to blame bad roads.

      The argument seems to be “I deserve a winning team. The team owe it to me to win.”

      • Cal says:

        I can see the reasoning, but many who post here remember the 70s team and wish the team cold get back to being a contender again. It’s been a long time since a Hab team had a real chance for the Cup instead of a pipe dream.

  28. Maritime Ronn says:

    Good Morning

    Whether one likes Flames Coach Bob Hartley or not, he had some interesting thoughts and insights during an RDS interview last night.

    1) re Patrick Roy who he coached in Colorado when the Avs won their 2nd Stanley Cup in 2001.
    Hartley mentioned Patrick’s passion for the game even back then, when every morning before practise Roy wanted to know everything concerning preparation, strategies, what was trying to be accomplished during practise that day – why certain defensive plans vs. others…what Hartley was saying is that there are no surprises about what Patrick has brought and accomplished in Colorado thus far.

    2) “When you are the Mayor of Montreal, you are also the Mayor of The Montreal Canadiens.”

    3) His own Flames Michael Cammalleri:
    ” One of the easiest players/pros he has ever coached.Takes great care of himself. A real leader that is great in the room and helps out the young guys.
    Hartley mentioned there were a lot of things said about Cammy, but he has learned to judge by what he sees – not by what others have said.
    In 11 games played this year, Cammy has 8 goals/11 points.

    4) NHL coaches aren’t Lottery ticket sellers…meaning it’s not their job to sell hope. He mentioned that there is a responsibility to the media and the fans, yet the most important is accountability to his own players as every jest and decision taken is judged by the players….meaning a coach can easily lose a room when players feel there are unfair situations and/or double standards.

    • Cal says:

      4) We shouldn’t take the leap in logic and apply it to DD. Many coaches give a point scoring center a lot of time to get going. From the reaction of the players to Coderre’s tweet, I think they are onside with MT on this one. Or are we beating the PK drum on this one? 😉

      • Maritime Ronn says:

        Hi cal

        No leaps being made. Just stating what the NHL coach mentioned.
        Guys get paid by production or performing other roles and ice time (certainly not Subban) could become an issue especially if a team is not going well.

  29. Bash says:

    We don’t need Parros to go after Kadri. That’s a job for White or any team’s middleweight. If he is not suspended this time I will be surprised.

    “If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.” (anon)

  30. montreal ace says:

    Kadri tonight on Backstrom, elbow to the head and a forearm to bury him into the ice on the way down. Two lousy minutes in the sin bin for such a blatant foul. Kadri actually pulls his arm back to load up for the forearm,
    so with all of this happening not one official sees anything but a minor penalty. Seeing these types of fouls, makes me realize how much of a circus the NHL has become. I think of popcorn, lemonade, and cotton candy when I see a circus, God I don’t want to change my refreshment routine, lol, but when the circus comes to town you never know.

    • savethepuck says:

      There are many times a minor penalty or even no penalty at all results in a suspension. Sometimes I think it is obviously harder in real time for the officials on the ice to see the play clearly because it happens so fast. The league still looks at it if it is brought to their attention, and acts accordingly if necessary. As bad, or even worse, was his hit to the head of Granlund. It was as bad or worse than his elbow to the head of Backstrom. Don’t have a link, but go to YouTube and search ” Kadri match penalty”, and look at that hit. Two suspendable offenses in one game, he better have an in person hearing.

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

    • Habfan17 says:

      One thing I noticed is that Kadri did not play that way when he first made the NHL. His dirty play started when the Leafs went out and brought in the likes of Or and McLaren. He has this false bravado knowing he will not have to answer for his transgressions. The flip side of having goon. The rats have a field day knowing they won’t have to fight.


  31. Propwash says:

    Just heard the bit on social media.

    Social media gives everyone a voice that others can “hear”. Patches removing his twitter account speaks volumes because people can trash him no holds barred directly. I don’t care who you are, that’s going to affect you in one way or another, but not in a positive way. It’s the nature of the beast in this day and age and maybe hockey players shouldn’t have social media accounts. It’s enough to have one boss, try having a million of them berating you and see how you feel.


  32. CH Marshall says:

    Wow. We may have issues, but the oilers are woeful

    • monmick says:

      Last night’s game is misleading. It was 1-0 until the end and then Dallas scored two empty net goals. Dubnyk given second star…

      ~~~> Mathematically eliminated…

  33. savethepuck says:

    So on TSN hockey home Page the top story is “Wild rally to beat Leafs in shootout”. The 2nd story is ” Wild G Backstrom leaves game after collision with Leafs Kadri”.
    To me a collision is accidental and viewing the replay, it didn’t look that accidental to me.

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

  34. scotland says:

    love knuckles nilan! will be buying the book tomorrow.

    i suppose he and some others on here have a good point on the negativity surrounding the club and some of its players and coaches. i love my habs as much as the next guy, and thats where the passion comes from. repeatedly bashing a player ? nah ….but when vets are mailing it in i will voice that i am noticing it! when coaches need to be replaced i will voice that too.

    i am a fan….not a cheerleader…………some guys on this site seem to think they are the same thing.

    • Timo says:

      As if players read anything that’s being said about them anyway. If they do, they are really stupid, but I suspect that none of them buys The Gazette, or Le Presse or visits HIO. So really… they are NOT that bombarded with negativity.

      • savethepuck says:

        You ever been booed by 21,000 plus at the Bell? I would think that would be a bit negative.

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

        • Timo says:

          Well sure, but I’d take that negativity for 1M a year. Believe, I would not give rat’s ass if that were indeed the case.

          • savethepuck says:

            I actually agree with you that a professional athlete making the $’s that they do shouldn’t have to be coddled and should be held to a higher standard to perform. I think they are privileged to be able to play a game they love making that incredible money. I don’t agree with some however who make it sound like because they aren’t performing that they don’t care or aren’t trying. Besides talent, it takes a certain work ethic and character ( yeah I said it) to make it to where they did in their careers. Sometimes a player simply loses their game or teams have enough tape on them that there is something about their game that makes them easy to defend.

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

    • savethepuck says:

      If someone plays bad, I will point it out too, but it seems that there are a lot of posters on here who hate certain players and they will crap on that player game in and game out no matter how good or bad that player plays in a particular game. It gets very tiresome.

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

  35. savethepuck says:

    Saw both head shots by Kadri, both should be suspendable offenses. I had better hear tomorrow that he has an in person hearing. If it is nothing or even a phone hearing, I will be convinced that there is a definite bias in the NHL.

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

  36. Bill says:

    Awesome that Ted Nolan is back in the NHL! Hope he does a great job … except against the Habs.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

  37. jedimyrmidon says:

    What a piece of crap Nazem Kadri is.

    He fits the punk bill to a tee. Thinks he’s invulnerable out there and cherry picks vulnerable opponents who are looking in the wrong direction.

    That elbow to the head of Backstrom was as blatant as they come.

    • Habfan17 says:

      He does it because he knows he won’t have to fight. Orr and McLaren fight his battles. That is the reverse affect of having goons and allowing fighting. If the league threw the book at rats like Kadri, all players would be better off !Now. most of the fights are not passion, they are morons gong after a player who throws a good clean hit that they don’t like, or they are staged.


  38. savethepuck says:

    I went to YouTube and searched “Kadri elbow Backstrom” and got to view it. I thought it was very bad. I can’t seem to find a replay of his later 5 minute major tho, does anyone know who he hit or have a link for it. Nothing I am tying in search is working for me.

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

    • CH Marshall says:

      It’s funny cuz the networks are only playing the 5min major

      • savethepuck says:

        I actually found it on YouTube by searching “Kadri match penalty”. What a punk, I am not pro fighting but someone has to kick the $#it out of him. He’s way too brave because he has a few goons on his team.

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

        • CH Marshall says:

          Oh yeah the way he was headhunting our players, I’m 99% fine with someone kicking his ass hard. The other 1% is what that moron PJ Stock randomly calls a “pacifist”. There’s another tool who could be knocked down a peg or two from his high horse

  39. durocher says:

    I just logged on to say one thing: F Kadri!

    Who head-shots a goalie?! Minnesota should have rang his bell real good after he ran Backstrom. Because they didn’t, Kadri nailed another Wild player with a head-shot.

  40. Lafleurguy says:

    Minny-Leafs shootout pretty well takes Bernier out of Olympics contention.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  41. PrimeTime says:

    If this was a Leafs site we would have to read the same critiques from posters.

    º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º

  42. govenah says:

    nice goal Phil.

    Grind this.

  43. HabinBurlington says:

    Boos raining down on Minnesota, 5 min. major powerplay, 1 good shot…..

    Minny scores!!!!

    Kessel with a give away, then goal goes in off his skate.

  44. port elgin says:

    Leafs will eventually be exposed for the mediocre team they are
    and can somebody please put that c$$$$su&&er kadri through the boards, can’t stand to look at him anymore

  45. @donmarco

    It will be the best three or five day hockey experience of your life 😆

    I’m a dancin machine (fool), and I sing like Elvis (kermit the frog)

    EDIT- BYE BYE Kadri!

    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    Custom Sports Figures
    Summit Member

  46. HabinBurlington says:

    Kadri headhunting again…..

    This time 5 min. and ejected from game.

  47. The Jackal says:

    Nilan and the HIO show really nailed it regarding negativity and the inane and incessant trashing of players on the internet and social media.
    It’s really juvenile and unbecoming of people to constantly do that.
    Being a fan of a team is a bonus. You can be a die hard fan but you have no bearing on whether the team wins or loses. Just enjoy the ride, it’s a 30 team league and there is only one winner every year. There are way more highlights and good times in even a losing season to keep fans happy and entertained.

    Hockey sine stercore tauri.

    • Mattyleg says:

      People rant and say “I won’t stand for anything less than the best! I won’t settle for anything short of the Cup!!” but I couldn’t care less if we won the Stanley Cup or not.

      Don’t get me wrong, it’s great when we do, and disappointing when we get knocked out, but all that stuff is a bonus. I watch the team 2-3 times per week all winter because I love the game, I love the team, and it keeps me entertained (in a sadistic way most of the time) during the long winter nights.

      This ‘demanding’ attitude is a sad symptom of the ‘Age of Entitlement’, which makes people think they somehow ‘deserve’ all kinds of things, despite having done nothing for it.

      I’ve never booed my team, and I have no respect for people who do.

      I’ve never booed a Hab, and I’ve never ranted about one incessantly on here.

      Just support your team.
      There are 29 other sets of fans that will pick your team apart.
      And there’s just one that will stick with them through thick and thin.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • The Jackal says:

        For sure.
        I only started following hockey and the Habs when I moved to Canada, and before that, my lack of hockey was fine, I mean, my life was not lacking in the sports department. But when I discovered this sport, it was like getting one more good thing to look forward to. I love hockey and the Habs, and even though I’ve never witnessed a cup win, I can honestly say that following the Habs has been an enriching experience. It’s like making a new friend, in a way.

        I understand that people have the right to be critical and all that, but it’s so futile when it is about stuff like this. And Nilan is right when he says to think about how the players feel. Just because they make the big bucks doesn’t mean they’ve lost part of their humanity. They’re just people in the end. I was disgusted to read about the fans treated Breezer during his early years as a Hab and how that made him depressed – that’s really messed up. Good for Max to stick up for DD. DD is a real good guy and competitor. He didn’t make the team by being a stiff. I wish him the best and hope he bounces back.

        Hockey sine stercore tauri.

      • PrimeTime says:

        Here Here!!

        º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º°¨¨¨°º¤ø ¸„ø¤GO HABS GOø¤º

      • JF says:

        Agreed, Matty. I never boo the team or any of our players – although there are some nights when they’re playing so badly I choose not to watch them. I’m critical of the team’s performance and that of individual players, but I never trash any of them or go on about how “useless” they are or how much they “suck.”

        And I agree with what you say about entitlement. Some people over-react to a bad game as though they take it as a personal insult.

      • savethepuck says:

        Well said.

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

    • CH Marshall says:


  48. Mattyleg says:

    Watching Phi – Pit on RDS.

    Pens came out flying (?) while Flyers looked flat (??)

    Disallowed goal for Pit, outshot Phi, Phi up 1-0.

    Exciting game, and beats watching the Laffs.

    —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • otisfxu says:

      hate seeing the Laffs play and win, but everytime I watch them play they look like they can win every game,,,,,they play for their coach,,,not sure how far Habs go for their coach

      • The Jackal says:

        They don’t look like they can win every game, they look like they are being out played every game.

        Hockey sine stercore tauri.

        • HabinBurlington says:

          I don’t know Jackal, they do a good job of allowing their goalie to see the shots, they capitalize on mistakes and play a physical game.

          Hard to argue with their record.

          I still can’t believe how Nashville basically gave away Franson, one could argue he is their best defenceman.

          • The Jackal says:

            I do think they get good goaltending, but other than that, they live and die by scoring on turnovers, almost exclusively. I don’t think they will keep it up. You can’t just keep getting limited chances and expect to keep winning. Good record so far but that did not work for them in the playoffs and the Leafs were close to spinning out near the end of last season as well.

            Hockey sine stercore tauri.

  49. Lafleurguy says:

    Sarcasm is really, really hard work.

    “May you live in interesting times.”

  50. Mavid says:

    Good News!! I am going to be a grandma again!! My other son and his GF are expecting!! They just told us tonight..she is 6 weeks along

    Weed Wacker Grandma Smurf

  51. Bozo McBozo says:

    Just watching more of MT’s F-speak on 24 CH. My critique? Maybe if you had something marginally f’n insightful to say to the troops, their f’n f’n uselsss effort might bear some f’n freakin’ fruit. F, if I ever played with a dickhead like him behind me, I would pull out a Horatio Hornblower book out between shifts. My apologies to the francohones amongst us, I am a big fan of Napoleon, but I know of no comparable series in English.

  52. HEY Kadri, step into my office, you’re done!

    5 games there folks?

    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    Custom Sports Figures
    Summit Member

  53. JohnBellyful says:

    I’ve never cared much for dump-and-chase hockey. Borrrrriiiiinnnngggg.
    It’s coughing up the puck with a purpose, which is nothing more than phlegm-flam.
    To put it in football terms, it’s like punting on first down and hoping the receiver who lined up onside will retrieve the ball before the other team does. The percentages don’t favour the attacking team.
    Just once I’d like to see a team, for the entire game, try this: Instead of dumping the puck in the corner or ringing it around the boards, why not have the player carrying the puck down the middle or to one side blast it off the far boards at such an angle that it immediately returns to the middle of the ice beyond the blue line and behind the defender where the shooter or a winger picks it up in full flight.
    A variation would be to have the centre draw the defender toward him after firing the puck and as the two engage, the ice opens up for a trailing forward to pick up the loose puck with a clear path to the net.
    Let me demonstrate by way of a diagram, where I is the player, P is the puck, and D is the defender:

    Step one
    [I the puck carrier advances toward D]

    Step two
    I^ >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> P
    [I fires puck to the right not in a straight line but at, let’s say, a 13-degree angle; 17-degree? Do I hear 20?]

    Step three
    ……………………………………………………………………….P<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< I^>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>D [turns to collect puck while I races past him ]

    Step four
    ……………………………….IP^ [I retrieves puck behind D]
    ……………………………….? [D has a puzzled look after getting beaten on the play]

    Step five
    Y [I raises arms after scoring]

    Space doesn’t permit showing how the play is to be executed in a two-on-two situation but recent practice with the local peewee team has shown that, with a few minor adjustments, it can be every bit as effective as the one-on-one stratagem.
    At the very least it would be worthwhile for teams to experiment with banking the puck off the boards at all sorts of angles while on the offensive to see what kinds of plays can be developed using this unorthodox approach.

    Tomorrow: Blowing the play dead with a hidden whistle when the other team has a breakaway

    • HabinBurlington says:

      Hmmm, sounds or looks like geometry or physics, not my strong suit. Any chance you have a Coles notes version?

      • JohnBellyful says:

        Okay, Burl’, let me put it this way:
        I’m a forward heading due north, I fire the puck at East-South-East and pick it up at West-North-West on the other side of the West-East axis (also known as the blueline). If everything goes as planned I walk in and score (and not hit the pole).
        Another way to look at it, think of ju jubes on a platter, and there’s a frog in a bowl off to one side filled with water that’s slowly getting warmer, and ….. wait, that’s not going to work….hmmmm, take two magnets, iron filings….or is it three magnets ….
        I’ll get back to you

    • HabFab says:

      Isn’t that called the “reverse gomez”?

  54. Bozo McBozo says:

    I’m sick of Habs players saying the team needs more grit. Well, duh dude, the fans can’t suit up. Might you want to take it upon yourself to grow a freakin’ set? Stamkos is out with a broken leg and you can’t get CP two goals in regulation. Damned if Priceberg’s stock ain’t rising!!!

  55. habsfan1001 says:

    dirty play by kadri

  56. frontenac1 says:

    Hola Amigos! Front typing this from out in the back shed with a bottle of single malt and his dogs on his Univac with Quasar monitor. Damn Mobile site still pooched. Danny Boy will get it together. Crankshaft is the Real Deal. Knuckles is No Princess Timo , you and that Montreal Mayor need a downtown Walkabout with me and Burly. And Matty, don’t listen to those guys about “reality”. There”s no such thing. Hardware fading fast amigos, time to put another log on the fire and fire up a rocket. Saludos!

  57. Phil C says:

    Briere deserves recognition for being a career PPG performer in the playoffs. Here is a list of active players who are PPG playoff performers:

    1. Sidney Crosby 1.280
    2. Evgeni Malkin 1.169
    3. Claude Giroux 1.100
    4. Martin St. Louis 1.079
    5. Alex Ovechkin 1.052
    6. Daniel Briere 1.009

    That being said, I think it is naive to think that Briere will suddenly find another gear in the playoffs if he is struggling throughout the regular season. He has found a way in the past to maintain or slightly exceed his regular season production while most players suffer a drop off in the post season.

    On the flip side, if he starts producing regularly going into the playoffs, you know he is the type of player who can keep it going. That’s what they paid for.

    • twilighthours says:

      Amazing that so few active guys are ppg players.

      • Chris says:

        Sad indictment of the state of affairs in the NHL. We’re edging dangerously close to dead-puck era scoring levels.

        • HabFab says:

          Boone was suggesting in his after game report that you explain some play to us… have I missed it somewhere?

          • Chris says:

            Haven’t watched any games for a couple of weeks. The course I’m teaching this semester has been keeping me at work very late as it was pretty far beyond my comfort level.

            But just 7 more lectures and I can get back to something approaching a regular life.

          • twilighthours says:

            That’s a good thing. It will make you a better teacher

          • Chris says:

            Unfortunately, it’s making me a better teacher at a time when we’re about to have a bloodbath in the university system. The job market in academia right now is just brutal…I would not advise anybody in Canada to pursue an academic position for the next decade or so.

            Ontario’s government is following the lead of England, Texas, etc. and looking at gutting their university teaching: they want more than 50% of teaching to be delivered online for cost efficiency reasons, and they want to abandon the idea of universities offering universal training, focusing more on narrow specializations. So for example you might have a university specializing in biology, and therefore encouraged to gut their chemistry, physics and math departments and having the students take those courses online. Scary stuff.

          • twilighthours says:

            None of that sounds good at all. Especially the focus on online courses.

            Virtual courses do not provide a quality educational experience.

            You could always be a public school teacher!

          • Chris says:

            Agree about the online delivery model…bad direction.

            But it’s a zero sum game, and health care is going to gobble up more and more pie. The education system, which is already somewhat strained, is really going to start to get hammered as they try to redistribute more and more money to health for an aging population.

            I had thought about high school teaching, but I don’t think I would enjoy it as much and the job market is pretty grim there too. I’m looking more at emigrating at this point, to be honest.

          • twilighthours says:

            Don’t rule out trying to get in to a high school. The kids you would teach would all be wonderfully engaged and enthusiastic. And there’s such a great energy in a high school, with the various sports and clubs and activities.

            I’ve done a few career-type jobs and none of them compare to the fun of being in a high school.

            My two cents for ya, Chris.

    • JohninTruro says:

      6th is pretty good, that is an impressive list there.


    I’m back baby!

    Here’s to all the mistakes they made last game and not playing like that again until next year.

    It’s the NHL’s fault, they should use Sept for camp, and the first week of Oct to play three games, and then start the season.

    Shane Oliver
    Twitter @Sholi2000
    Custom Sports Figures
    Summit Member

  59. Eddie says:

    When was the last time the Habs were considered a true contender, not by the pundits, but by their own fans?

    1) this year

    2) 2011 the year after they ran to the Eastern Championship series and lost vs Phily

    3) 1986 and 1993 Cup wins

    4) 1979

    I think it can be argued that we have not started a season as a true contender since 1979.

    86 and 93 we had good teams but who could have predicted that Edmonton and Pittsburgh power houses would each take a one year holiday and get eliminated before the finals?

    My point?

    It’s frustrating how long we have waited.

    • mark-ID says:

      I think the year they finished first in the East(2008)….a lot of us thought they had a real shot at the cup. I went to ten games at the Bell centre that year, and they won nine of them, including the 5 goal comeback against the Rangers. Unfortunately they ran into a hot Marty Biron in the second round.

      It felt like they had something special going that year.

      “I think I may have found a way for us to get Griffey and Bonds, and we really won’t have to give up much” -Costanza

    • wjc says:

      What about Buffalo, Vancouver, Ottawa, Toronto, New York Islanders, you know the rest.

      The thing is you could wait another 20 years, entirely possible. If it does not happen will you finally smell the coffee and realize, it is out of your hands. Believe me the management/owners would like to win as well, but it is very, very, very hard when so many have the same goal.


      • HabinBurlington says:

        I don’t believe Ed is so misguided as to believe it is in his hands. You make many good points wjc, but sometimes you seem to feel like the rest of us can’t be fans the way we want to be. I love the Habs, they are a part of who I am and I am good with that. Yah it’s tough when we don’t win, but there is nothing wrong with wanting it to be better.

        It may appear to you that some of us are actually dying with each loss, but I think it is safe to say we are still doing fine with our lives.

        Nothing wrong with us been fanatics if we wish.

    • ont fan says:

      There are only six or seven real contenders every year and their cores start together and mature. Detroit, Chicago, L.A Pitts. Boston. Even Van. San Hose or St Louis . We can’t contend with any of these teams for a seven game series.This make the playoffs and anything can happen is a pipe dream. Big or small, most Habs players don’t want to go to the dirty areas. Trade for talented prospects such as a Yak. or other players that are struggling. We are just treading water now. Keep Price, the kids and Subban. The rest are on the block. Gainey may have made a big mistake when he gambled but at least he took a chance.

      • Chris says:

        And of those teams, Detroit, Vancouver and Boston are all on the verge of declines, as is San Jose (Joe Thornton isn’t getting any younger).

        Chicago, L.A., St. Louis (they desperately need an elite offensive player), and Pittsburgh are either at their peak or trending upwards into the elite.

        The Islanders and Lightning have the young talent to possibly start to move upwards, and the Oilers have the assets to build a powerhouse if they get some management with a clue.

        And watch out for Buffalo, who are so loaded with draft picks that they can re-build in a hurry. If they tank and land McDavid after next season, they’re going to be ridiculous.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      No doubt Ed, I don’t disagree that we haven’t been considered a powerhouse since then. All the more reason why I am willing to be patient with a patient GM.

      What else has been consistent with the Habs since ’79? Constant change, be it GM’s, coaches etc….

      Savard did bring us some Cups, they were good teams whom I think many underestimate how good they were. It is harder than ever to be a dynasty, those days are over. But indeed it would be nice to have a run like the Bruins presently are, or the Hawks are on, or like the Red Wings have experienced.

      Those teams don’t have a revolving door in Mgmt and Coaching. It sucks, but I hope we have the right GM and with that I can be patient.

    • Chris says:

      True enough. But I’m increasingly convinced that Montreal is a second-rate hockey market.

      The tax situation and media pressure make it a less than desirable market for players. The fan expectations make it all but impossible for teams like Montreal, Vancouver and Toronto to tank.

      Relentless coverage means that it is hard to be patient with the kids: Montreal fans and media expect all these guys to be good right out of the gate, and a couple of bad seasons as they grow into their form is not acceptable. A guy like Vincent Lecavalier would almost certainly not have been afforded the few years he needed to grow into a true NHL star.

      And then you just throw in the pure stupid luck. Montreal has only been bad enough to land a top-5 draft pick twice since 1990: Carey Price in 2005 and Alex Galchenyuk in 2012. Compare that with the other franchises:

      New York Islanders – 13
      Florida – 8
      Tampa Bay – 8
      Pittsburgh – 6
      Anaheim – 6
      Ottawa – 6
      Winnipeg/Atlanta – 6
      Colorado/Quebec – 6
      Carolina/Hartford – 6
      Los Angeles – 5
      San Jose – 5
      Columbus – 5 (+3 6ths and 1 7th)
      Washington – 4
      Vancouver – 4 (but none since the Sedins in the late 1990’s)
      Chicago – 3
      Edmonton – 3 (+4 6ths and 1 7th)
      Phoenix/Winnipeg – 3
      Philadelphia – 3 (+ Forsberg as a 6th overall pick)
      Boston – 3
      Nashville – 2 (+3 6ths and 2 7ths)
      Toronto – 2
      New Jersey – 2
      Minnesota – 2
      St. Louis – 2
      Buffalo – 1
      Dallas – 1
      Detroit – 1
      Ny Rangers – 1
      Calgary – 0

      Not all of the teams at the top of that list are doing well. Some have been brutally mismanaged, but some (Tampa Bay, NY Islanders, Florida, Edmonton) have an embarrassing number of excellent prospects that they can start using as bargaining chips in trades to get the kind of team they really want.

      What is more obvious is that the teams who aren’t getting many high picks are either already struggling or poised to struggle. None of those teams are perennial contenders except for the Red Wings (whose window is closed), the Bruins (whose window is closing with Chara getting near the end of his run), and now St. Louis (who still lack an elite forward to take them over the hump).

      High picks don’t always work out, but in many cases they are traded for more assets so that a team can keep its pool strong. Teams that have been consistently in the playoff mix or just outside the mix are not in a good place: Calgary, Montreal, Toronto, Dallas, Buffalo, Nashville…most have been well coached teams that just didn’t have the talent to truly compete, but were too good to land a true superstar level player.

      We’re all hoping Galchenyuk gets there. But both 2005 and 2012 were not top-notch draft years in terms of generational talents. Bad luck. 🙂

      • The Good Hab-bit says:

        Hi Chris, I’m sorry, but I really don’t agree that Montreal is a less a attractive hockey market, than others – on the contrary! If you were all about the hockey, would you rather be in i.e. Florida, Carolina, Phoenix or Dallas where nobody attend the games but the fans from the other team or would you rather be in one of the greatest North American cities which also happen to have fans that love the game!? If I would make enough cash to live happily ever after, the the tax rate would be my least concern, but okay I might be a little naive, who knows. On another note, I think it is a quite cultural Quebec tendency to be negative about what Quebec has to offer. “No players want to come here!” is the saying…so my question is, have there ever been players that have said “I don’t want to go to most amazing hockey arena of the NHL”??? I think not, but I could be wrong…

        • twilighthours says:

          In my (albeit limited) experience talking to NHL employee folk, it seems that most NHL players prefer to play in non-traditional, preferably southern, cities.

        • Chris says:

          There have been plenty of players that have made it clear they have no interest in playing in Montreal, Toronto or Vancouver. If they want the bright lights, big city hockey atmosphere, New York is the hot destination. Montreal has often been included on players’ no-trade list for a variety of factors.

          The Bell Centre is routinely cited as the best arena in various player polls. But it seems like it comes with the caveat of ‘best arena to visit’.

          As Twi said, the players very much enjoy playing in non-traditional hockey markets. Saku Koivu and Larry Robinson both praised the more casual aspect of playing in those markets, and both knew the passion of Montreal intimately.

  60. HardHabits says:

    Josh Gorges feels the Canadiens need a little extra grit.

    Where have I heard this before?

  61. Chris says:

    No trashing of Swedish sweaters is permissable! 😉

    As for the ads, I kind of like the ad-covered European uniforms. I’ve wanted to get a Jokerit jersey for ages. A throwback Brynäs IF jersey for Mats Näslund is also an option.

  62. habstrinifan says:

    Wonder if Gionta is the HABS captain with the ‘players only meeting’ record. Seems a lot has been held under his reign.

    I hear each player receives a bottle of hydrogen peroxide after the meeting… you know to treat all the ‘tongue biting’ under our very proper captain.

  63. HardHabits says:

    The coming out party.

  64. Habfan17 says:

    I agree with the posters that say we can live with the odd stinker.
    Unfortunately, there have been too many games even this season where the players do not appear to be engaged.

    What burns me is when Gionta, the Captain comes out and says that they did not play the first 40 minutes and that the coach had to tell them to drive the net to start the 3rd period. This from one of the players we are told are so valuable for their leadership. He and other veteran players. should have taken the bull by the horns to start the second period and started to lead by example. They did not.

    I think that the game has become more about the money and stats for too many players. I remember an interview with former Habs players who were asked how they were able to go two seasons with only 8 loses one season and 10 the next. The answer was, we didn’t want to be embarrassed by the teams we felt weren’t as good as us, and we wanted to show the better teams we were the best. Savard went on to say that the coaches didn’t have to call players out who slacked off during a game, all the other players did in the locker room after the game , so there weren’t many players willing to face that.


    • Hobie Hansen says:

      It all comes down to having players that naturally drive to the net. Gallagher is the only guy who does it constantly and he’s 5’9″ tall. Bourque does it on occasion. Pacioretty is frustrating because he’s big but much prefers to let a shot rip from the slot than get in close and get dirty.

      Trying to force a bunch of players to do it that have never done it before doesn’t work.

      • Habfan17 says:

        Agree! It is frustrating to watch the “bigger” players play in the soft areas. I think Patches still isn’t right. He is starting to remind me of Brian Savage, always hoping he would break through, impressing with his speed, and always injured. I hope this isn’t the case.


      • Phil C says:

        I know what you are saying about certain players excelling at going to the net in a physical way, it’s hard to teach that, a la Gallagher and Cole. However going to the net is a fundamental of hockey that all players should do, regardless of playing style. Briere showed last night that you don’t have to be a physical player to go to the net and have success. He has done it his whole career. All the forwards should be doing this at the appropriate time. I thought the EGG line had pretty good net presence last night.

        One of the things Pacioretty is doing right now is coasting behind the net after shooting instead of stopping at the net for rebounds. He is taking himself out of the play due to a lazy habit. Bourque does this sometimes as well. Drives me crazy because there is no excuse for it. Even if you are worried about the backcheck, it is faster to stop at the net, then get back, rather than going around the net while keeping your speed up.

    • johnnylarue says:

      Well, the alternative to telling the press they “didn’t show up for the first 40 minutes” is simply admitting that the Lightning are a better hockey club. Which is patently true.

      “Yeah, we were really trying out there, believe it or not, but they’re just a waaaaaaay better hockey team than us.”

    • wjc says:

      He said ‘they didn’t play well the first 40 minutes, not that they didn’t try. The game is about money, over priced tickets, concessions and over pay players, playing in a too long of a season. 82 games is too many and you wonder why the players, no matter how well they are paid, lose focus.

      Those teams that lost only 8 and 10 games will never be again, the salary cap eliminates that. Savard played on teams where they were practically invincible and bad games would not be noticed because there were so many super stars.

      Those days are gone forever.


  65. habstrinifan says:

    I was reading the articles with great interest and obtaining good enlightenment… and then someone posted that Briere was about the post season and not the regular season. And they were serious. I think I’ll go watch reruns.

    Claude Lemieux was a playoff performer. Briere had a good playoff once but you dont sign a player like hime for ‘the playoffs’.

    • Mark C says:

      109 points in 108 playoff games, yet only one good playoff. Interesting take.

    • Mattyleg says:

      I don’t think MB signed him for the playoffs.
      I’m sure that Briere will be good for 20 goals and 20 or so assists this year. That’s fine by me, playoffs or not.

      I don’t get the ‘he’s good in the playoffs’ concept, myself, Trini. Sounds like people setting themselves up for disappointment, to me. What if he doesn’t play well in the playoffs, but does okay during the regular season?

      What then?

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • JohninTruro says:

        Then he has another player like a lot of guys on our roster now. They don’t put up nearly as many points in the post season as they do in the regular season, and we will continue not to score in the playoffs.

      • Habfan17 says:

        I do get signing players that do show up for the playoffs. There have been some so called “great players that put up lots of points in the regular season and disappear in the play offs. Having said that I prefer players that do well all the time.


      • Hobie Hansen says:

        There is no way Briere is going to get 20 goals. I hope you’re right.

    • JohninTruro says:

      That someone was me, free to post what I like, whether people agree with me or not. I didn’t say he WAS, I suspect he was. I can see the logic behind the signing based on Briere’s CAREER playoff performance, not one year performance. The guy has a CAREER 109 points in 108 games. That is a really long post season. I am trying to bring optimism and positivity to the signing instead of all of the negativity around him and everyone else. I don’t like the signing myself, but I can see Bergevin’s logic behind this.

      • johnnylarue says:

        “‘Some players get you to playoffs, some get you through playoffs,’ Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin told SI’s Michael Farber.”

        Briere is a proven playoff performer.

        Hence, the connection is a logical one.

        • JohninTruro says:

          Yes, thanks. Again I never said I liked the signing, but the logic seems obvious to me. I doubt any of us will know why Bergevin signed him, we can only speculate. If we make the playoffs and Briere is great in the playoffs we will quickly forget how he performed in the regular season. I recall Cammy playing fantastic in the playoffs, and average, or below average (for Cammy) in the regular season…we could name a number of players like this.

      • Habfan17 says:

        You are correct, Ryder was a regular season player and did not do much in the playoffs. Briere rises to the occasion in the playoffs.
        I like the signing, I would like it better if it had been for one season.


      • habstrinifan says:

        I apologize for over-reacting. I know the line used by MB (as quoted by LaRue)and I know you were quoting MB. I do sincerely apologize. But I am sticking by the dubiousness of (this) Briere being our ‘ace in the hole’ come playoff time. And this Briere was evident before the signing. I have posted that MB tried… based on the parameters he was working with… one being the cultural thing..so I am not dumping on MB eitehr. Let’s just say that all evidence points to it being a gamble that wont work out. Of course the season is still young.. or is it?

        • JohninTruro says:

          Reruns that bad? Season is still young for sure. Emelin and Prust back this weekend adds a huge dynamic to this team. Helps shore up the offense, and I think adds confidence and leadership to that group. Shores up the defense with the return of the beast back there in our top 4, and move Boullion to the pressbox which should split up Diaz and Gorges so they can be platooned with a bigger player to balance their skills.

  66. habitunts1 says:

    DD , Markov and a 2014 1st rounder for Yak


  67. Timo says:

    Oh geez, Stubbs and Knuckles go on and on about how tough it is to be a hockey player in Mtl and the negativity that they have to deal with on social media. Boo, effing, hoo!

    How about a Joe Blow spending upwards of $200 of his (maybe) $2000/mo salary to take his kids to the game once in a blew moon to be treated to Brian Gionta’s “we haven’t showed up in the first 40 minutes”. These guys don’t live in the real world and their problems of being offended by tweets and news paper articles are laughable. Suck it up, princesses.

    • Mattyleg says:

      I dunno, Timo, they happen to be humans too, and just because they make lots of money doesn’t mean that people can treat them however they like.

      If someone spends money to see sports, they should understand that anything can happen. You can pay $1,000 for tickets, but that doesn’t mean that you deserve anything.

      If you want a sure thing, go to Disneyland. Apparently it’s a pretty consistent product.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

      • johnnylarue says:

        “Goofy’s a bum!!”

        • wjc says:

          Stop picking on ‘Goofy’ leave ‘Goofy’ alone, what did he ever do to you.

          Goofy has never done anything but good. Donald and Mickey always putting him down……for shame.


      • donmarco says:

        Well said, Matty. We forget there are real people in those uniforms. I wonder why nobody has asked how Gionta’s son is doing? The average NHL’ers career is just under 4 years. Imagine if you or I spent our entire childhood and young adulthood chasing a dream only to see it over by 25. And that’s the lucky ones. The other 99% never even get a sniff. So yes, Timo, they’re different from us. But still real people.

    • johnnylarue says:

      Amen, Timo.

      Although–and not to defend their mediocrity–I’ve rarely heard a player publicly complain about the added pressure of playing under the “intense scrutiny” of the Twitternet Age. This is usually done on their behalf by a sympathetic member of the press, as is the case here.

      Most players have better sense than to issue public laments about their sorry lot in life between trips to the Lamborghini dealership and fittings for custom panther hide leather pants.

    • otisfxu says:

      yes, I/we all work under all kinds of pressure in our jobs, deadlines, screwups, families,,,,,,for a fraction of what they earn. They are just lucky not all of us live our lives arounfd what the HABS do, or they would have a million more tweets to deal with.
      However also lucky that 21,000 + others do actually think they are deserving to be seen live, and fork over the hard earned cash.

    • wjc says:

      If he is making 2 grand a month and is spending $200.00 @ for a ticket to a hockey game and he has small kids, he, my friend is an idiot.

      Gionta said basically, we were ineffective for the first 40 minutes. Tried but nothing was working, finally got it together in the 3rd to make a game of it.

      Maybe the ‘timo’s of the world should make who they are more public and stop hiding behind phoney baloney disguises.


      • donmarco says:

        Very well said. Life is about priorities, and spending 10% of your salary for a hockey game would classify him as an idiot. I make a tad more than that, and I wouldn’t drop that kind of money on the Habs. Not when I’ve got all of you to chat with during the games.

        Plus if I bought what I actually consume in booze during a game I’d be bankrupt.

    • twilighthours says:

      You write as if you, joe blow, work harder than Brian Gionta. Do you? I don’t you know you, nor do I know Brian, but if I had to guess who has worked harder to achieve his lot in life, I’m going with Brian Gionta.

      This is a common rant of yours. You think these professional athletes don’t deserve their salaries. Yet they are the hardest working and most talented at their profession in the world. Don’t the very best always get paid well?

      If you were the very best at your job (whatever it might be: pencil pusher, email responder-er, middle manager, corporate web surfer) then you’d be paid accordingly. If you’re not, then you have no one to blame but yourself, and begrudging the very best will only make you more bitter (if that is still possible).

      I’ll do you the service of not standing over your shoulder and criticizing your every bad day, all the while presuming I was some sort of expert on whatever it is that you do.

      • Chris says:

        I can only wish that being good at a rare skillset and working hard were the factors that went into determining levels of compensation. 🙂

        I agree with you, though, as the dedication to get to the required talent level to become a professional athlete is ridiculous. When you work with OHL players whose careers ended just shy of the professional level and see how much they risked only to not achieve the dream, it can be sobering. And those guys are the vast majority of the spectrum. The guys that make it are pretty awe-inspiring.

    • donmarco says:

      Funny, Timo, but when people constructively criticize your, at times, asinine comments you disappear. Yet there are others here who always come to your defense when you are “attacked”. And you can’t appreciate what Pax and Gorges did for Desharnais? People here do it for you all the time.

      • Timo says:

        I don’t like arguments. I say what I say and I feel what I feel. Nothing anyone says will change that just like nothing I say will change how other people feel.

        They came to his defense… fine. Good on them. But I don’t buy that it is “so tough being an NHLer”. I would trade places with them to get booed and sit upstairs in the pressbox for even minimum NHL salary any day of the year.

        Hell, I would supply Coderre with a list of tweets he can post about me so that he doesn’t have to come up with his own.

  68. Hobie Hansen says:

    So we’re basically waiting for McCarron, De La Rosa and Crisp to grow up before we have any forwards with size? They’re several years away from even breaking into the league as well. After they crack the NHL it will take several years for them to get comfortable. And there’s a chance one, two, three or none of them pan out.

    Bergevin is a smart guy. We heard how annoyed he was last summer when he said big, strong and talented forwards don’t grow on trees.

    I think he’s going to have to throw a huge offer at a team, containing draft picks, players young and old, in order to land a power forward and another big 3rd line player.

    Maybe Nathan Beaulieu, Zach Fucale, 1st rounder and a roster player. There is no light at the end of the tunnel here folks, other than waiting 5 or 6 years? Am I wrong?

    The way of the small and speedy team is dead people. It never worked in Montreal in the first place! The debate ended a long time ago. In Today’s NHL you have to be big and speedy. It’s nice to show respect to the guys like Koivu, Cammalleri, Gionta, Desharnias, Briere and all the other small players that have come through Montreal. Unfortunately, if you have more than 1 or 2 of them getting large amounts of ice time you have no chance. That’s a fact.

    • JohninTruro says:

      Could have signed Clarkson for 5 million plus…

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        The reason i say trade is that Bergevin doesn’t want to overpay a UFA like Clarkson, I don’t blame him. You have to make an offer to a team they can’t refuse for a player who’s worth the money he’s getting.

        • JohninTruro says:

          We need to start somewhere though. We are working on a solid prospect pool, of all shapes and sizes, which I think we can agree you need to be successful. I don’t know that anyone here would trade Gallagher for Clarkson. I am all about the size, but more about the heart and the willingness to win. If you have that it doesn’t matter how big you are, although it helps to be bigger!

    • SmartDog says:

      > Nathan Beaulieu, Zach Fucale, 1st rounder and a roster player.
      Any player who would warrant that in a trade is untradeable.

      I would like to see an impact trade. Only because there are too many passengers on too many nights. But I don’t see it happening.

      And don’t forget that while Bergevin was “so annoyed” about our lack of size, he went and signed Briere. So he’s not exactly… uh… realistic… predictable… trustworthy?

      Listen to the Smart Dog. He knows his poop!

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        The Briere move was so stupid. He couldn’t get a big impact player so he decided to please the locals and hope for the best. Bad move.

        Although it was nice to see Briere in for Desharnais. I wish both of them didn’t play for Montreal but I’d rather Briere than Desharnias.

        • JohninTruro says:

          Hobie I suspect Briere was all about the post season and very little to do with the regular season. I don’t think Bergevin thought we would have any issues making the post season but wanted to fill the goal scoring void left by Ryder once the playoffs started since we couldn’t score on Anderson. I think if we make the playoffs and Briere does nothing we can jump all over him for this being a terrible signing. He looked good last night, even aside from the goal he scored.

          • Hobie Hansen says:

            Eessh, I dunno. Like I said, I was happy to see Briere in over Desharnais but I’ll be sick if they’re both in the lineup again together.

          • JohninTruro says:

            I agree, I don’t know what we are going to do with DD, sucks for us but part of the game. He could have easily been a bargain at 3.5m if he regained, or regains his form.

    • wjc says:

      Hockey teams are always waiting for players to develop, some do, some don’t. The line of new players is endless, the draft in 2014 will give all teams more players that travel the long road, to fame, or nowhere’s ville.

      Small, talented and speedy is always preferable over big, slow and untalented. I take it you would not have drafted Gallagher. You would trade Beauleau before he even fails. Don’t think he will.

      When Beaulieu becomes a going concern, can point and say another bad trade……geez


    • twilighthours says:

      So which player do you propose we land with such a haul?

  69. JohninTruro says:

    Bulldogs lose again, but Andrighetto buries another one for his 7th of the year.

  70. JM says:

    Predictions for tonight:

    Minn over Tor
    Pitts over Philly
    Dal over Edm

  71. Dunboyne Mike says:

    donmarco, brilliant avatar!
    Want to make a grown man cry? Name some of the streets in NDG and Westmount where your coffee spilled! Ex

    Expat feeling a bout of homesickness coming on!

  72. donmarco says:

    I really like the fact that Knuckles really called out the “fans” for being so viciously negative. While many posters here are thoughtful and intelligent there are many who just spew out venom. I was always taught to pull for your team, no matter what, and I always will.

    And to the very good folks at HI/O please start reading what posters are saying about the site. It’s starting to look like a Swedish hockey sweater with all the ads. It’s getting ridiculous and really starting to turn people off. We know, and support, your right to generate revenue but c’mon.

    • You know I am one of the biggest cheerleaders here, but last night sent me over the edge. They showed Zero talent until the last 6 minutes of the third. I hammered them all, Coach to GM, to everyone over 21 years (Less Price and Budaj). Those over paid bums can’t even figure out when to go blocker side on a goalie in a shootout. I’m taking a break from these guys. I am to busy with life to spend 3 hours in front of the TV watching this team. Too busy with my business, too busy with my son’s hockey and I am a ST holder for the Wheat Kings. Until this team plays a better system they will always blow chunks. I got Bantams that go to net harder than these guys.

      😆 😆 😆

      Shane Oliver
      Twitter @Sholi2000
      Custom Sports Figures
      Summit Member

      • wjc says:

        Sholi2000, I am with you in the game being disappointing. However, in keeping things in perspective, I accept that sometimes slumps happen and they are mysteries.

        Even the greatest Canadiens teams played stinkers, at home in fact. Television was not there at the time to record it. Memories of great past players and games are skewed and only the glories are remembered. Every player great or near great or fringe has managed a stinker. Like every comedian bombs once in a while, a singer goes off key, an anouncer muffs an easy line, a singer forgets the words to the National anthem.

        When the game started getting on my nerves, and it did in the second period, when seemingly they forgot how to pass and were fumbling all over the place, I finally decided to give the ship up and found something else to do. I know I will be back and I know you will be back.

        The problem for me is not to let myself get so self absorbed that I lose myself in my emotions. Taking it personally is not good. It is healthier in my opinion to step back and give my own head a shake.

        In the back of my mind I hope they finally find their game and on occasion when I have given myself some time for rational thought will slip back to watch and just snicker at taking it so damn serious.

        Sports will disappoint 9 of 10 times when you consider in the NHL only 1 team will win the ultimate prize and 29 will not, that is the normal. That means millions of people will have their hopes dashed. The only protection is keeping it in perspective and remembering there are other things to distract you/me.

        You will peek again and they will excite you again and the cycle will continue. Professional sports know when you are hooked, you are hooked for ever, that is why they want to get you while you are young and naive.


      • Timo says:

        Should I make a “Sholi says you suck” t-shirt?

        Btw, finally got to meet Jim and got my tshirt. Thanks, Shane.

      • donmarco says:

        I have read many of your posts, Sholi, and know you are among the real fans of the team. Do they, as wjc mentions, disappoint us, frustrate us, even make us angry sometimes? Of course they do, and far too often in recent years. But in reading your post you make pertinent statements about their system and their lack of willingness to drive the net. Your comments are salient an valid. Never once do you vent your frustration on a single player, and if you do, it’s analytical and not venomous or personal.

        You, buddy, are needed here. Take the break, but don’t be a stranger.

      • johnnylarue says:

        I’ve managed to make myself care a lot less this season. I no longer feel like I “need” to watch every game. I can walk away when things get boring or the Habs fall behind by more than a goal in a game.

        I’ve also noticed that I get almost the same amount of joy from watching highlights as I do from seeing goals happen in real time, so…

        Net result: 6 to 9 more hours of free time per week! Not too shabby.

    • Mattyleg says:

      Good luck, Knuckles.
      I’ve already been dragged over the coals for criticising fans’ relentless negativity.

      Felt like a villain who’d taken a ball away from a child.
      Lots of people telling me to live in the ‘real’ world and to be ‘realistic’.

      I don’t buy their ‘realism,’ because as far as I’m concerned, the ‘real’ world doesn’t suck as bad as they claim it does.

      But they seem to like/hate it.

      —Hope Springs Eternal—

    • habstrinifan says:

      Have you seen some Sweedish sweaters… or at least whats in them. Let’s not knock Sweedish sweaters

  73. icedogs22 says:

    Go Habs Go

  74. RAM_TOUGH says:

    Hey ole Box Head


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