Un Canadien errant - (Normand Harvey)Member since June 4, 2011
Habs fan since: 1970
Favorite current player: Andrei Markov
All-time favorite player: Lafleur-Mahovlich-Shutt-Robinson-Savard-Dryden
----------------------------------------------------------------------- My sources are unreliable, but their info is fascinating.--Woody Paige http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/
- Comment on About last night … (2014-04-17 01:48:00)
Yeah, it's just dawning on me that it's now an option. I was certain it was understood that the extension he got last season was to tide the team over, to reward him for his loyal services, but that we'd definitely move on next season. I'm of a mind that I'd rather throw Magnus Nygren out there next season, even if it means a few extra losses. Sometimes you need to take a step back to go forward again.
- Comment on About last night … (2014-04-17 01:45:39)
Mine is a Cisco unit compatible with Telus TV, it's a reconditioned jobbie that I bought for $100, so I can't complain really, but it's really, really buggy, it's slow, every command takes seconds to execute, very poor user interface. It does the job, which is to allow me to watch the game when I get home from work, but I now miss my old PVR, which wasn't state of the art, but was much more user-friendly and much less aggravating than this one.
- Comment on About last night … (2014-04-17 01:33:59)
Timo, you may want to avoid this post. Interesting article on RDS, an interview with Francis Bouillon, who states that he still wants to play next season. http://www.rds.ca/hockey/canadiens/bouillon-jouera-gros-dans-les-s%C3%A9ries-1.1135508 Which shouldn't be surprising, who would really want to walk away from a job like that, but I'd conditioned myself into thinking that everyone knew, on HIO, on the team, among the coaches, in the offices upstairs at the New Forum, that this was Francis' last season. I kind of thought that he might play in Switzerland or elsewhere in Europe for a couple of seasons, to finish out his career, ease out of it with a nice experience. When I learned that he has a son who plays minor hockey on a line with Mathieu Darche's twin boys, I realized that was less likely, that he'd uproot his family for a sinecure in Europe, but still, I thought the NHL was out of the question for him. Personally, I want the Canadiens to refrain from re-signing Mike Weaver or Francis next season, we need to clear out the roster for the Magnus Nygrens, the Tinordi-Beaulieu-Pateryn triumvirate, whenever these guys are ready. And if we find that we do need a veteran placeholder, let's sign up a Jeff Schultz or a Ryan O'Byrne, a big rightie to be the #6-7 d-man, not a smallish leftie. So like I said, interesting, in that I thought this decision was already made, by mutual consent, but apparently not, the Bull would like to return. If for no other reason, that may play in our hands, in that he'll be super-duper extra motivated these playoffs, to prove he's still got it, as he did on Saturday against Derek Dorsett. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- My sources are unreliable, but their info is fascinating.--Woody Paige http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/
- Comment on Liveblog: Playoff Game 1 – Weise goal seals 5-4 OT thriller (2014-04-17 01:22:19)
I've always looked at it as, even if there's a split with the Lightning winning on Friday, the series is now essentially a best of five, with the Canadiens having three games at home, and the Lightning two. So, the Habs have now essentially claimed home ice.
- Comment on About last night … (2014-04-17 01:10:17)
My PVR played a nasty trick on me. I had set it up to record every program on RDS from "Hockey 360" until 0200 hr PDT, which I thought would be sufficient for any overtime, including a Capitals vs. Islanders-style marathon. Somehow though, I got robbed of the entire overtime period, jumping straight from the end of the third period, to the next program when Jacques Demers and the rest of the crew on l'Antichambre were gladhanding and backslapping. Odd, since I was expecting them to comment in between periods before resumption of play in overtime, but they were definitely in a celebratory mood. I really thought there was no reason to celebrate at the end of the third. So that blows. I've seen the Dale Weise goal, but I'll definitely watch the end of the game on "Canadiens Express". And I'll manually program my PVR the rest of these playoffs to prevent this from re-occurring. What's even more odd, and blows much more, is how many Canadiens fans felt their lineup was inferior to the Lightning's prior to puck drop, and were somberly predicting doom for les Glorieux. Which I absolutely don't get. I think the Lightning are, like the Canadiens, a good but not flawless team, with strengths and weaknesses. Further, I feel we match up quite well with them. With rampaging rhino Ryan Malone on the sidelines for disciplinary issues, there's no monster player who'll bulldoze a swath through our lineup, we're facing a fast, skilled team that will try to skate with us, which we can handle. One post on HIO which made me gasp described the Tampa Bay defence corps as "pretty awesome" and containing "no weak links". Now I have to differ on this, any team which puts out failed-Leaf Mike Kostka as their #6 defenceman ipso facto relinquishes any claim to awesomeness in any form. Your weakest link is wearing #21, plainly, for everyone to see. The brittle Sami Salo is 39 years old. Radko Gudas is statuesque, but in his case it's not meant in a flattering way, like it is when describing Kate Upton. RDS had a lowlight segment of Tampa Bay d-men gaffes, and it wasn't pretty. Matt Carle getting down to block a shot and letting Lars Eller skate around him for a score. Radko Gudas stumbling and, uh, letting Tomas Plekanec skate around him for a score. Flubbed passes, for glaring giveaways. Then the Dale Weise goal with both d-men wrestling behind the net with titanic Daniel Brière. That's a lot of lowlights for one game. I'm not saying that our defence is leaps and bounds better, we have our own issues, but there's no way that we should have d-corps envy when it comes to the Lightning. Save that for when we're up against the Blackhawks in the finals and look upon their first pairing of Brent Seabrook and Duncan Keith, as big of a preck as the latter is. No envy then, especially if P.K. can find his form. He looked scattered again tonight. Ineffective offensively, spraying passes, not reliably gaining the offensive zone on the powerplay, he was also out of sorts on defence. He tried a few times in the second to deliver his 'bee sting' hip check, but mostly missed his man and had to scramble back. At one point an opponent tried to retaliate with a hip check of his own, P.K. took offence and delivered a weak one-handed slash, and then faked an injury for a few seconds to try to draw an offsetting penalty. I'll say it again. I want P.K. to play tough, to play hard, but to stop with the cheap slashes and spears and slewfoots, to stop gaping at the refs, arms in the air, shrugging, while play continues around him. I want him to stop the diving and the maudlin act for the refs. I want him to be tough, to fight through checks and slashes and play with a purpose, not distracted by what the refs may decide. Keep playing hard until the whistle blows, you'll get more calls that way. I want him to stop trying to instigate, he's too good a player, too smart, too valuable, too likable to take the Brad Marchand path. Play tough, play hard, and if you cause a fight, decline it, or finish it yourself, don't wait for Hal Gill, Josh Gorges, Brandon Prust, George Parros or Francis Bouillon to come in and save your bacon. But this is a side rant, meant to clear the air, P.K. didn't win the game for us, but he certainly didn't nearly lose it for us. There's plenty of blame to go around. Mike Weaver for pinching, holding the blue line, when his team was up one goal, drew a lot of negative attention. If we were trying to tie up the game late in the third, the risk would have been justified, but as it was, he sprang the Lightning for a two-on-one that Steven Stamkos cashed in for his second goal of the game. Andrei Markov didn't cover himself in glory on that one either, his slide was mistimed and ineffective. And I hate that play anyway. He focused on the puck carrier instead of blocking the pass and letting Carey worry about the shooter. Carey had an awful game in terms of his results going into overtime, stopping 12 of 16 shots. Pierre Houde during the game idly wondered whether Carey was suffering from the lack of work, whether more shots might have been better for him, and it's hard to argue against that hypothesis. The Antichambre crew assure me that he made up for this with his play in overtime, keeping the boys in the game until Dale Weise ended it. One other goat who jumped out at me, and everybody else on RDS, was Brandon Prust on the third goal against, when he had the puck on his stick in the defensive zone, with a slim one-goal lead. This is the kind of situation of which coaches will plead requires a 'strong play', meaning banging it off the boards, clearing the zone, not messing around. But Brandon tried to finesse the puck, to stickhandle his way out of danger, and he coughed it up and it ended in his net. He was properly contrite, immediately, and we'll have to give him a pardon on this, seeing as it's his first game back in a month, but I'd like to caution Brandon that when he plays on a line other than the fourth, he gets too fancy. He seems to think that he needs to match pretty plays with his linemates, whereas all he needs to do is skate hard, gain possession of the puck, and the opposition zone, bang and crash, be physical and a handful in front of the net. Let your linemates do the embroidery Brandon, you just be yourself, do your job, move the furniture around, that's all that's required of you, and you'll do fine just doing that. It's worthwhile to go over the contributions of our fourth line, and the greater depth of the Canadiens at forward. From the lowpoint of two seasons ago when we had the likes of Aaron Palushaj, Mathieu Darche, Yannick Weber, and Mike Blunden among others filling in on the fourth line, and bleeding up into the third, we now have a comparative embarrassment of riches. Making lemonade, Michel Therrien played Daniel Brière at centre on the fourth line, between two fast young wingers Dale Weise and Michaël Bournival, who have the ability to cause havoc in the offensive zone. Against a tougher, more physical team, Ryan White might make more sense on the fourth line, but this combo was the right choice to counter Tampa's speed. They spent a large part of their shifts in the offensive zone, sending pucks skittering across their crease, and had them on their heels for a large portion of the evening. With Travis Moen coming back from injury soon, Michel Therrien will have lots of options to mix and match youth or experience, speed and offence or defensive reliability, scoring or grit, when he makes up his lines. So we've wrested home-ice advantage from the Lightning, even if it wasn't pretty or decisive. "They found a way to win", on a night when Carey was off and every mistake ended up in his net. Let's hope for a better result from him on Friday, so we can go home up 2-0 in the series, and step on their neck on Sunday. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- My sources are unreliable, but their info is fascinating.--Woody Paige http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.com/
- Comment on Eller returns as Habs prepare to face Lightning (2014-04-15 11:20:45)
It looks like teams know you won't find anything on the open market in July, so if they have someone they control, they sign them up, cost almost no object. Like the Leafs with their UFA's last year, Dion, Tyler Bozak, they overpaid, but they figured a bird in hand. Look for the bill to re-sign Andrei and P.K. to be pretty salty.
- Comment on Eller returns as Habs prepare to face Lightning (2014-04-15 11:17:04)
We had a guy who didn't know how to work a fire hydrant. His excuse: "We didn't cover that in training." Uh, yes you did. He flunked out too, and he's pretty much the only one who ever did also. It's like a chef saying he didn't get to use a knife in school. Even it that had happened, which it didn't, wouldn't it be his responsibility to find out, get additional training? It's frightening, like the co-pilot in the Buffalo airliner crash, who minutes before was prattling on about how she wouldn't know what to do if the airplane iced over.
- Comment on Habs will open playoff series Wednesday night in Tampa (2014-04-14 02:43:35)
I have to say, I didn't get riled up when I heard Steve Simmons say that. I get what he's saying, that before there were teams other than in Montréal, Toronto and even Vancouver, lots of Canadians had to choose which team they'd root for, and many went with les Glorieux. Now kids grow up rooting for the Jets or the Flames, or even the Penguins because of Sidney. As far as being irrelevant, TSN and HNIC have to take a long look in the mirror about that. Every story about the Leafs is a national story, so we have to watch every night what's the latest on Nazem Kadri or Dave Bolland, but not a peep about the Evander Kane saga, or what's happening in Calgary. TSN should be a national broadcaster, but it's a Toronto station that fills a little airtime with subjects from other locales. About "The Reporters", I find that Dave Hodge and Michael Farber particularly do a great job on that show, and are as objective and insightful as can be. I still miss Damien Cox, he was acidic and entertaining, but Dave Feschuk or Bruce Arthur do a good job too, they're funny and enlightening. Steve Simmons is there for eye-candy for the ladies I guess...
- Comment on Habs will open playoff series Wednesday night in Tampa (2014-04-14 02:26:40)
So I just saw the hit on Daniel Sedin that required him to be fitted with a neck collar and stretchered off. A fairly routine hit/shove from behind in the NHL, in terms of its perfidy and intensity, but the result was anything but routine. http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/nhl/daniel-sedin-in-stable-condition-after-hit-from-behind-1.2609017 And that's another in a long list of problems with the NHL. People are always getting hit from behind, constantly, thirty or fourty times a game. Hockey players are gamers though, they absorb the contact, smear their snot on the glass, shake off the cobwebs for a second, then keep playing. They keep grinding, and cycling, and finishing their checks. Unless you get a dirty Bruin, one of Don Cherry's noble warriors, anyone of those guys will give you the mother of all fake dives. http://relentlessineptitude.blogspot.ca/2012/02/game-58-montreal-3-boston-4-so.html I'll ask again: why is hitting anyone in the back, permissible, or tolerated, in any circumstances, at all? Why is it just penalized when a victim's head is projected into the boards, but not the rest of the time? In football, you can't block from behind. If you're behind someone, he has the advantage on you, plain and simple. He's faster than you, quicker than you, closer to the play, and that's just too bad for you. Run faster if you want to make the play. Why can't we make that very simple change to the game, that would benefit the skill players, would increase scoring, and improve player safety? Because it makes too much sense? Let's give the player with the puck the advantage, he can't be hit from behind, ever, in whatever manner or with any level of force. No tolerance. If Sidney Crosby has the puck and you want to hit him, and he turns his back to you, that's fair game for him. He has the puck, he has the advantage. Be quicker, more agile. He's allowed to protect the puck from you, to play keepaway. Currently, you can push, shove, crosscheck, crosscheck harder, slash, spear, you name it, whatever you want to do to someone in the back is fine, unless that person falls or dives, and what the state of accounts is currently in the game/series. If you've already had a couple of powerplays in the game, be careful, since the refs will want to even things up. A penalty is not a penalty unless a debit exists somewhere. Yesterday, Kris Letang, freshly back from a stroke and a thirty-game absence, while trying to get a shot off on net from the slot, was crosschecked from behind by Scott Hartnell, who then proceeded to fall on top of the Penguin defender. After the resultant scuffle, both were sent to the penalty box for a minor roughing penalty. http://www.sportingnews.com/nhl/story/2014-04-12/kris-letang-stroke-scott-hartnell-dan-bylsma-craig-berube-flyers What absolute madness is this? Why is a thug like Scott Hartnell allowed to bludgeon a player trying to play hockey. Why didn't he get six or seven penalties, a mix of minor and majors and misconducts and 'attempts to injure'? Hey, Gary Bettman, you mendacious fool, I'm talking to you! Stop peering at spreadsheets and fix your broken league. Stop paying lip service to player safety and do something tangible about it. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- My sources are unreliable, but their info is fascinating.--Woody Paige
- Comment on About last night … (2014-04-13 01:21:03)
Yeah, it's a little sad. I know a fanbase has to celebrate sometimes, and this may be the only thing to cheer for this season, but it's a little over the top. Like when the Leafs celebrate their giants of yesteryear at the New Garden, and trot out Myrko Frycer and Bill Derlago.