CJ - (C.J. Casselman)Member since December 30, 2013
Habs fan since: 1979
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All-time favorite player:
- Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 13:46:32)
Kinda like the hit Max put on Letang? Yeah I agree, pretty close in terms of comparatives. Yet, Max got three games, Gryba nothing despite being a repeat offender. Have the rules changed? Are we now viewing head shots, directly or indirectly, through a new lens and if so, does that new lens have a reduced regard for player safety? These are the things that make me want to pull my hair out.
- Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 13:16:56)
At least these offenders were suspended. I can't stand the fact that Gryba and Kredier just dodged a bullet. Actually, I'm not even sure a bullet was in the chamber. The league is so inconsistent.
- Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 13:14:21)
Allow me, if I may, to be the 1,000th (give or take a zero) to offer an opinion on Bourque and to a lesser degree Eller. Both players seem to slide or bounce based on confidence. There is no telling what might have happened if Bourque had scored on that slapper that hit the crossbar in Washington, but I'd bet it could have helped to improve his confidence and get him going. Everyone is different and hockey players are no exception. Some guys need a kick in the rear, while others need a hug and words of encouragement. I've often marvelled that, in today's professional sporting world, there aren't more sports psychologists. My brother's father in law works with Olympic athletes around the world. Yes, I know, it's hard to compare a team sport with individual competition, but this might be the one last untapped resource. His athletes have shown remarkable improvement based on having, for lack of a better term, a mental coach on their staff. We have a coach for the special teams, defence, goaltending, head coach, video review coach and consultants, but we are missing that "confidant" who takes a guy out off dinner or goes for a stroll in old Montreal. Last spring Scott Mellanby was credited with helping Bourque turn things around. We have Lapointe and others providing counselling to our prospect pool, but we could benefit from someone who works as a consultant with our players. It looks like the end of the golf season is upon us, so this might be the last golf analogy of the season; starting my round with a par of birdie just gets me going. If I make a birdie my swing actually feels looser. My target looks bigger and I improve my chances of having a good score. If I make bogey or worse on the first few holes the exact opposite takes place. I try harder then I did before, yet my swing becomes detached, I'm out of balance and I'm tense. Sorry to relate hockey to golf, but when I look at Bourque's game, nothing is coming naturally. He only had the puck on his stick for 5 seconds last game and positionally he's struggling. I believe he's overthinking everything, the sign of a man who knows he's not playing well. IMO, especially as the game and the players have changed, the introduction of a sports psychologist could greatly benefit those players who, like Bourque, might benefit more from talking than arse kicking.
- Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 12:56:26)
Barring injury, I don't believe that we are offered that opportunity Ed. Not this year, not next year. He needs to be in a top four position. You wouldn't attach a thoroughbred horse to sulky and we shouldn't try to integrate Beaulieu as a 5/6 defenceman. It just doesn't make sense. Andrighetto is having a great year in Hamilton, again. But if MM gets injured, I'm not bringing Andrighetto up to play on the fourth line. Again, just my two cents....
- Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 12:53:09)
This is just my opinion, but I don't believe that offensive defencemen struggle with left/right as much as defensive defencemen. Look at Karlsson, the best purely offensive defenceman in the game today. He brings the puck up both sides of the ice, enters the zone on either side and can be found on either side of the slot. He finds lanes and will attack on either side. They view the game differently. Beaulieu has played both sides, at every level. I have had only limited occasions upon which to watch him play anywhere but Montreal, but even as recently as last season, he played with Frankie on the right side.
- Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 12:03:15)
After only 10 games, the 7-1 loss greatly impacts our stats. Over 82 games that loss won't reflect the team's defence, the way it dies today.
- Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 12:00:09)
Looking at the Devils depth chart, it appears only one of Adam Larrson or Eric Gelinas is able to crack the lineup. Would we consider moving Beaulieu + for Larrson? Larrson is a right handed shot (that said, Nate plays both sides). Larrson is 22 in November, the same age as Beaulieu (turns 22 in December). Anyway, it's funny, because I actually think each player fits better in the other organization. Thoughts?
- Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 11:49:18)
Correct. I did however offer the disclaimer, "more often then not." That's hockey though. We were the better team in Edmonton and lose 3-0. In Calgary, we were second best in everything but penalties, embellishment and goaltending, yet we won 2-1.
- Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 11:34:07)
I agree with every point you make. It's a process and ultimately I trust the leadership team. Aside from what I consider to be contract offers that are a little rich, I can't find much fault with the direction this team is headed. Further, despite sitting at 8-2, I firmly believe Bergevin when he says he's always trying to make the team better. Naturally, many folks focus on the negative. It's boring when we win and play great hockey. There was almost no discussion following the win against the Rangers. Two games in Alberta and everyone, myself included, is an expert. Heck, if we go 5-5 over our next ten games, we reach the quarter pole 13-7. That's a great start. Anything beyond 5-5 would be a bonus. Yes, I want to win every game, but again, it's all about process and driving, as a team, toward the same destination.
- Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 11:09:43)
Good morning friends. 8-2 is a great record. Further, we have (knock on wood) managed to play ten games with almost no injuries. So far as I can recall, only Emelin (two games) missed any time thus far. Contrast that with Columbus, who has been decimated with injuries and we see the difference a healthy lineup can have. With all hands healthy and on deck, I believe Montreal and Columbus to be the two best teams in the East. Am I apologizing for having a healthy lineup, of course not. My post is simply meant to illustrate the impact that injuries have on the standings. Could Montreal be better, yes. Have we worked out all the kinks, no. But, this is an 82 game schedule. We will continue to evolve and adjust. What I am liking most is that the team now dictates terms more often than not. We force our opponent to adjust to our style. Most importantly, we attack. This will lead to odd man rushes, turnovers and goals against, but it helps improve puck possession, territorial advantage and keeps the guys moving. We are most effective rolling four lines, something many teams can't say. At the end of the day, I don't care to see the team peak tonight. Yes, I want them to play well and win, but the time to pull it all together is the first game of the postseason. Hockey is a game of ebbs and flows. I sincerely doubt that you can prorate points or player stats over the season. Guys will get hot, guys will go cold. Guys will be injured and depth will be tested. Again, it's a process leading up to the playoffs. So, that stinker we played in October matters not in April. The Kings looked brutal through multiple multi game stretches last year. We are worried about scoring? Look at the Kings. One player with 70 points, followed by the next closest with 50 points, then 43 points. All this is to say, sit back, relax and enjoy the ride. We might win tonight, we might lose. What's most important is that we win more then we lose over the course of 82 games. Then, like the Kings last year, you need to go 16-12, or better and you can forever be a Stanley Cup champion..... Just my two cents....