Chris

Member since November 21, 2007

Guelph, Ontario

Habs fan since: 1984
Favorite current player: Andrei Markov, Lars Eller, Chris Higgins
All-time favorite player: Mats Naslund, Eric Desjardins, Stephan Lebeau, Kirk Muller, Saku Koivu

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Recent Comments

  • Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 14:19:31)
    And equally importantly, it does not factor in offensive zone starts.
  • Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 10:11:05)
    Given that I used to have a lawyer with devil horns as my avatar, I thought Dipsy's use of tendentious was outstanding. I heartily approve! :)
  • Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-30 08:00:27)
    I agree, but the trajectories don't tell the whole story either. Therrien and Bergevin are very much behind Galchenyuk...he has been given every opportunity to make mistakes, and doesn't have to worry about getting benched. Yakupov and Eakins are oil and water. For whatever reason, they just don't mesh at all.
  • Comment on Canadiens vs. Canucks preview (2014-10-29 20:21:11)
    I find it interesting how so many sites, including sites that aren't populated by Habs fans, are confident in claiming that Montreal "won" the 2012 draft. So far, Nail Yakupov has 30 goals and 59 points in 120 games, while Alex Galchenyuk has 25 goals and 65 points in 123 games. I would argue there isn't much to separate the two players so far in their career. I think Montreal got the right player for them. I still think Yakupov is going to be a special NHL player as well...he just needed to so some growing up, and the scuttlebutt seems to be that his head is more firmly on his shoulders this year. I'm not sure that Edmonton is the right place for Yakupov, as they are playing him behind Eberle and they don't have great centers behind Nugent-Hopkins to play with Yakupov. Perhaps Leon Draisaitl develops into that player and gives the Oilers a second potent offensive line, but he's not there yet.
  • Comment on Canadiens head to Calgary after shutout loss in Edmonton (2014-10-28 18:26:16)
    Modern-day Russia. But it is at a pretty (modern) historic low right now. Even if you factor in all the former Soviet republics, the number is not huge: Russia - 25 Latvia - 1 (Zemgus Girgensons) Belarus - 1 (Mikhail Grabovski outlasted the Kostitsyns, although this is also Galchenyuk's background...his family were from around the Minsk area, I believe) Lithuania - 1 (Dainius Zubrus) So you can only get up to 29 players factoring in the entire pre-1990 USSR. And to make you feel old...8 of the 25 Russians in the NHL were born after the December 26, 1991 dissolution of the former Soviet Union. :D
  • Comment on Canadiens head to Calgary after shutout loss in Edmonton (2014-10-28 18:20:41)
    Completely agree about the power play...it isn't generally a determining factor. Here are the playoff PP ranks for the last 5 Stanley Cup winning teams: 2013-14 -- Los Angeles Kings (23.5%, 6th) 2012-13 -- Chicago Blackhawks (11.4%, 13th) 2011-12 -- Los Angeles Kings (12.8%, 12th) 2010-11 -- Boston Bruins (11.4%, 14th) 2009-10 -- Chicago Blackhawks (24.4%, 4th) No strong correlation there. On the other hand, balanced offence is a better predictor of Stanley Cup contention than goaltending. Teams that can't score, especially 5 vs. 5, do not win Stanley Cups, regardless of how good their goaltenders are. Teams that can score are often contenders, even if their goaltending is a bit shaky at times. I don't want to discount goaltending: Quick, Crawford and Thomas have been outstanding in their Stanley Cup runs, making big saves when needed. But the teams in front of them were often giving them a cushion to work with...even if they screwed up, there was a good chance the team would pull it out for them. For Carey Price and Henrik Lundqvist, they don't generally have that luxury. Those two guys know that giving up 2 goals is often 1 too many. That is a huge pressure to play with.
  • Comment on Canadiens head to Calgary after shutout loss in Edmonton (2014-10-28 17:44:19)
    Fun fact: With Alexei Emelin and Andrei Markov, Montreal features 2 of the 25 Russian-born NHL players to play in the NHL thus far this season. Alex Galchenyuk makes 3 Russian-trained players on the team. Tampa Bay leads the NHL with 3 Russian-born players: Vladislav Namesntikov, Nikita Kucherov and Evgeni Nabokov. More fun fact: There are currently 45 Canadians playing in the KHL. Among them are numerous alumni from the Montreal Canadiens or Hamilton Bulldogs system: Nigel Dawes, Dustin Boyd, Brock Trotter, Martin St. Pierre, Mathieu Carle, Ben Maxwell and Curtis Sanford. Most fun fact: That there are twice as many Canadians playing in the KHL as Russians playing in the NHL won't stop Don Cherry from ranting about Russians coming over and stealing the jobs from good Canadian kids. If he had to pick on somebody, he should probably pick on the Czechs (31 in the NHL, 1 Canadian in top Czech league), Swedes (59 in NHL vs. 21 Canadians in SHL) or Finns (25 in NHL vs. 14 Finns in the Liiga). The top leagues in Russia, Switzerland (10 Swiss in the NHL vs. 25 Canadians in the NLA), and especially Germany (5 Germans in the NHL vs. 87 Canadians in the DEL) are net importers of Canadian hockey players.
  • Comment on Carey Price will be back in goal for Habs against Rangers as Michel Therrien coaches his 600th game (2014-10-24 23:46:03)
    Patrick Roy used to get blown out a lot. Junior goalies are somewhat exposed because the defensive play can be so lax.
  • Comment on Carey Price will be back in goal for Habs against Rangers as Michel Therrien coaches his 600th game (2014-10-24 23:45:10)
    A kid that I was really playing up for the Guelph Storm during their Memorial Cup run last season was Swiss import Pius Suter. He was passed over in the draft last year because of his diminutive size (5'11" and 159 pounds). He's still got to put on some weight, but he's having an outstanding breakout year for Guelph, scoring a hat-trick tonight to now sit on 9 goals and 11 points in 10 games so far. I never saw this kind of offence from Suter, but I LOVE his defensive game. He never, ever quits. He's a ferocious forechecker that relies on his great speed and wonderful anticipation to break up plays. I doubt he continues on a goal per game pace, but if he can continue to add some weight and get himself 30-40 goals while playing strong defensive hockey, somebody will take a flyer on him next season. In the marquee OHL game of the night, Erie (9-0-0-1) met Sault Ste. Marie (9-2-0-0). The Greyhounds have been struggling a bit of late after going unbeaten in 7 to open the season, and dropped a 6-4 decision to Erie tonight. Dylan Strome (2 goals), Connor McDavid (1 goal) and Alex DeBrincat (2 assists) continued to pad their draft credentials. Strome now has 9 goals and 27 points in 11 games, while McDavid leads the OHL with 10 goals and 30 points in 11 games. 16 year old rookie linemate DeBrincat is reaping the benefit of his possible top-5 draft prospect linemates, leading all OHL goalscorers with 13 goals and sitting 5th in points with 25. At 5'7" and 160 pounds, DeBrincat still needs to grow to become an elite prospect for the 2016 draft. But those numbers as a 16 year old (he turns 17 in December) mean that he's going to get a LONG look by scouts over the next couple of seasons.
  • Comment on Carey Price will be back in goal for Habs against Rangers as Michel Therrien coaches his 600th game (2014-10-24 23:31:09)
    I am a fairly devout pacifist, uncomfortable with many military displays. But in this case, the young man was gunned down serving as a ceremonial honour guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, an almost purely honourable symbol of Canada. I think that that resonates with a lot of Canadians, which is why the tragedy of his death has resonated with even those of us who are sometimes uncomfortable with the glorification of the military.