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» 2006 » April

  • Habs Fall Short

    The Canadiens fell short against a good Devils team in a very important game. A tough loss considering the log jam that is the bottom 3 spots in the East and considering the Canadiens win streak will stop at 8 games and not tie the season record of 9 consecutive wins.

    The loss combined with Atlanta and Tampa wins further shuffles the deck. A win could have put the Canadiens solely in 6th spot and only 4 points behind Philadelphia. The loss puts them alone in 8th and 6 points ahead of the Thrashers.

    The Canadiens should finish no lower than 8th if they can manage at least 2 wins out of the remaining 5. But the Lightning have 2 more wins than the Canadiens and if the Habs hope to rise up again they’ll have to put together another streak and beat them in points alone. A tie with either Tampa or New Jersey is no good for the Habs as they would lose both tie breakers. The standings are just too close to call and will change several more times before it’s all over.

    Although they lost, the Canadiens competed. Failing to bury a 2 minute 5-3 advantage late in the first haunted them later. The most troubling though is the injury to Steve Begin. Once Begin went down and needed assitance you knew it was serious. Begin is a key role and character player and it’s tough to see him out of the lineup. It’s unsure how serious it is right now but with a sprained knee he will definitely miss the rest of the regular season and perhaps longer. It looked pretty bad.

    Tampa and New Jersey are both in action today and hopefully tired enough to get beat and give the Canadiens some extra help.

    What’s more interesting though is the expected debut of Jose Theodore for the Colorado Avalanche tonight against Minnesota. Will he fall on his face? Will he dominate? Will he just be average?

  • Who can stop the Canadiens?

    The Canadiens defeated the Ottawa Senators in Ottawa to win their 8th consecutive game and tying the New Jersey Devils for 6th place in the Eastern Conference.

    The last time the Canadiens won 8 games in a row was in the fall of 1992. A long long time ago.
    Do you recall what happend in the spring of 1993? The Canadiens hoisted their 24th Stanley Cup.
    Although it might be too early to be making Stanley Cup predictions, the fact is the Canadiens are on an absolute tear and at the perfect time. It has been nearly 14 years since the Canadiens had a streak like this. Let that sink in. 14 years.

    The Habs are 99% guaranteed a playoff spot and more than likely it won’t be 8th. If the Canadiens continue winning they have a shot at going as high as 5th in the East. If you were an opposing team right now would you be wanting a 1st round date with the Habs? Of course not. No one wants to play a blazing hot team. The Tampa Bay Lightning in the last NHL season finished the season super hot and that success and confidence propelled them to the Cup final and their first Stanley Cup.

    The Senators were definitely not at their best. Injuries have hammered them and maybe where it hurts most is in nets. I’ve sait it before, the Senators won’t win the cup and may not win a single playoff round with Ray Emery as their starting goalie. The Habs were dominated in the 1st period of the game but managed to leave tied 1-1 after scoring on less than 5 shots. Emery was beat easily more than once.

    David Aebischer got a road win against a team who very seldom gives them up. It should be good for his confidence and calm down the bloodthirsty fans after his slow start. Wise move by Gainey.

    Huet and Aebischer look like the best goaltending combo of any team heading into the playoffs.

    Everything’s going very well right now. How long can it continue?