JF - (Jane Findlay)Member since November 10, 2007
Habs fan since: 1961
Favorite current player: Tomas Plekanec, Josh Gorges
All-time favorite player: Jean Béliveau
- Comment on Canadiens send Beaulieu and Bournival down to Hamilton (2014-10-22 12:05:38)
We're still not getting off to great starts, we're still giving up the first goal, but what I like is that we get stronger as the game goes on. Not so long ago, we used to watch the team come out with guns blazing, only to fade in the second period. The third period used to be our weakest, with frequent collapses and blown leads. This year, the third period is often our strongest, and Price is able to slam the door late in the game. I think this is a sign of a good team. What was most impressive about Galchenyuk's goal was his display of tenacity and sheer physical strength in fighting off Quincy in front of the net and putting him out of the play before sweeping the puck around behind the net and in. Galchenyuk is becoming a dominant physical presence out there. He's also reached a new level of maturity, doing a good job of controlling his frustration at the way Quincy seemed to be targeting him during the game. He certainly came out on top. We didn't score a powerplay goal last night (although we should have), but we're starting to look a lot more dangerous with the man advantage. Passing is faster and less predictable, the box is less static, and we're starting to create chances down low. It seems very likely the powerplay will start cashing in more often. On the Wings' disallowed goal, it's clear Abdelkader was in the crease, but I think Price bumped him to draw the referee's attention, something we've seen him do before. It seems that the League is starting to interpret the rule in these situations as it is written. They just need to be consistent about it. It's been a great start to the season, but let's not forget that two of our victories came on the shootout. If those had gone the other way, our record would be 4-1-2 - which looks a lot less like that seventies team.
- Comment on Liveblog: Desharnais scores in OT to beat Wings 2-1 (2014-10-21 21:56:37)
It was Gustavsson last game.
- Comment on Habs recall Bournival from Hamilton; battle for jobs on fourth line (with practice video) (2014-10-21 08:09:33)
Watched half of the Oilers game last night. I don't believe that team has improved one iota since they started their rebuild seven or eight years ago. They have talent up front, but their defence is horrible and their forwards don't seem to feel they have any defensive responsibilities at all. They were turning over the puck a couple of times a minute. Yakupov played only a few minutes and was mostly invisible. We're watching Galchenyuk take great strides in his development, while Yakupov seems to have stalled completely. There is just no comparison. Maybe being drafted by the Oilers is the kiss of death; the only one of their would-be stars who stood out at all to me was Taylor Hall. Leon Draisaitl, their first-round pick in June (third overall), is still with the team; they'd better send him back to Junior before they ruin him as well.
- Comment on Habs recall Bournival from Hamilton; battle for jobs on fourth line (with practice video) (2014-10-21 07:59:38)
I agree. The difference between the attitude now and in 2009 is night and day. That year there were rumours (never proved) of Mafia contacts with the brothers K and Hamrlik, internet pictures of guys partying, stories about nights out. It was said later that some of the players cared nothing for the team or the jersey. And when Gauthier was GM, the players would literally turn on their heels and walk in the other direction to avoid an encounter with him. The atmosphere today is open and supportive, and everyone is committed to the team and to winning. Weise said when he was traded here that he felt right away that this was a special team. Creating a strong team culture is one of the two fundamental changes Bergevin made, the other being building a solid scouting and player development team.
- Comment on Habs have best record in NHL after Saturday’s win over Avalanche (2014-10-20 05:33:04)
You're right that we don't miss Vanek. And yet we all thought we would. When we acquired him, we were a team that struggled to score at even strength. Even without him, we have a much more dynamic offence than last year. Parenteau contributes to that, so does the domino effect of Manny Malhotra, so does the gigantic step taken by Galchenyuk. The team seems very well-balanced up front.
- Comment on About last night … (2014-10-19 09:57:20)
Great game, great ALN, good team getting better. Michel Therrien said at the start of this home stand that the next couple of weeks would be vitally important in ironing out the kinks in our game, solving problems, and working on special teams. Two games in, we're seeing the truth of his words. The powerplay seems to have come to life, the penalty kill was perfect, and there were fewer miscues than we've been seeing. I also thought that, despite giving up the first goal again both last night and against the Bruins, we got off to a better start in those games than we had on the road. We've talked about the need to make changes on the powerplay to give it a different look and generate more chances. I thought we started doing that a bit last night. After seeing a couple of his shots from his usual spot at the point not get through or get blocked, P.K. slid farther over to the wing and in a bit, just enough to find a shooting lane and get a slightly different angle on his shot. It worked; I don't think Pickard saw it at all. We need to do more of that and also create more backdoor and down low chances with more traffic in front of the net. Alex Galchenyuk gets better almost from game to game. He is playing several levels above where he was last year. His confidence has grown enormously, he's finding and creating space on the ice, he's making plays with authority, he's much stronger along the boards, and his defensive game has improved. A few days ago Pierre Mcguire was praising Bergevin and the Habs scouting team for having the conviction and courage to select Galchenyuk despite the major knee surgery that had kept him off the ice almost the entire season. Mcguire contrasted him with Grigorenko, who at one time had been ranked as high as Galchenyuk but who fell to twelfth or fifteenth place, and whose conditioning and work ethic are apparently nowhere near NHL level. P.K. was spectacular last night, but Andrei Markov remains our best defenceman. I shudder to think what the defence would look like if he were injured or if Bergevin had listened to all the calls for him to be traded at the deadline or let go over the summer. He's so intelligent, so smooth, he thinks the game so well. Jarred Tinordi had another strong game, but Weaver and Gilbert are scary and Emelin seems to have one major brain cramp per game. There's still a lot of work to do on defence. Manny Malhotra was a great addition in so many ways. We've talked about how he has taken over some of Plekanec's defensive responsibilities, thus freeing Plekanec to concentrate more on his offensive game, but there is also the effect he has on our other centres. We've become used to seeing the team struggle in the faceoff circle; Malhotra's skill seems to be making everyone better. If Galchenyuk is our future top centre, he can't do better than learn from Manny M. And for the first time in years, the Habs are strong down the middle.
- Comment on Liveblog: Canadiens win fifth of six, 3-2 over Colorado (2014-10-18 18:30:17)
The Plateau is great for atmosphere and night life, and it's next door to the mountain. Mile End, the northern bit of it up near Van Horne, is a bit cheaper, also very colourful with good restaurants and a lot of cafés. NDG is quieter, but the older part is beautiful, with tree-lined streets and brick row-housing. South of the tracks there's Point St. Charles, which is coming up in the world, and Little Burgundy. Parts of Outremont and Lower Westmount might also be affordable. North of the tracks, there is Little Italy, Rosemont, and Villeray. Farther east and below Sherbrooke, there is Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, a somewhat low-income area that is becoming more liveable (it's where Francis Bouillon gave money for an arena). With the metro, all these areas can be called "close to McGill."
- Comment on No lineup changes expected for Habs vs. Avalanche (2014-10-18 09:14:25)
Agree with you about most of the Canadian teams, but the Senators and Canucks are surprising me. It seems Karlsson is a vocal catain, even arguing with Maclean at practice the other day, as well as pulling his team-mates together after the first period against the Avalanche on Thursday night. I had thought it was too soon for him to be captain, but it seems I was wrong. As for the Canucks, I think they'll do a lot better than I expected, but the West is so strong they're unlikely to make the playoffs. The Oilers are an absolute joke, and Dallas Eakins (who reminds me of a rodent), would be the first coach fired if the Oilers' head office had even the glimmering of an idea of how to run a hockey team. Calgary will miss the playoffs, but unlike Edmonton, they're going about their re-build the right way. They left it too long (they should have traded Iginla a couple of years earlier), but they've started drafting better, and they have a coach who is teaching them how to play the right way, how to hang in games, how to win close ones. They'll be a good team long before the Oilers. The Leafs are also improving, but their mistakes in recent years (Phaneuf, Clarkson, some of their draft picks) are holding them back.
- Comment on Game Within the Game: Bruins’ Lucic fined $5,000 by NHL (2014-10-17 16:27:27)
This was linked farther down the thread, but I'm re-posting the link because the article is an excellent, well-written piece about how the antics of players like Lucic and Marchand are not only costing the Bruins points, but also tarnishing the classy image the organization would like to project(!). The writer even acknowledges that the Bruins got away with a lot in their Cup run three years ago. It's worth a read: http://boston.cbslocal.com/2014/10/17/kalman-bruins-need-key-core-players-to-grow-up-already/
- Comment on About last night … (2014-10-17 11:03:34)
A lot of work remains to be done, but there were encouraging signs in last night's game. The powerplay, apart from scoring a pair of goals (albeit one an empty-netter) showed definite signs of coming to life. It was less static, less predictable than usual and there was better net presence. Price, despite sporting what are probably some of the worst numbers in the League for a starting goaltender, has had moments of brilliance. A couple of good practices with Stéphane Waite should put him on top of his game. His numbers also include some fluky goals and at least one that was offside and shouldn't have counted. The defence is starting to sort itself out. There is still the occasional breakdown, like on the Bruins' second goal, but we're moving the puck well and having less trouble clearing our zone. I thought Jarred Tinordi had a mostly solid game. My impression during training camp was that he was not ready, and I was surprised by the decision to keep him with the team. But he appears to be a fast learner. He's nowhere near as hesitant as he was during the pre-season and he's making better decisions. Jiri Sekac had an excellent game and is looking more comfortable out there and more involved. His work along the boards was outstanding. I was thrilled for him when he scored and loved his father's reaction. The skill Parenteau showed on his first goal is exactly what we haven't had enough of the last few years. He may be a replacement for Brière, but his contribution will be different. Brière scored most of his goals near the net; Parenteau's hard, accurate one-timer is a threat from anywhere. The team has shown great resilience so far, coming from behind in each of our four victories. We still need to get off to a better start, although last night was an improvement over the first four games. But the team is working hard, and I love the no-quit attitude. And we're scoring goals. Last year we were well down in even-strength scoring; at the moment we're near the top of the League. So there is still work to be done, but there are a lot of good things to build on. And our light schedule over the next couple of weeks will allow for some focused, structured practices.