montreal canadiens hockey – habs blog RSS

» 2010 » April

  • Game 1: Habs/Pens

    Jubilation.

    No matter where you were watching that game, whether from the comfort of your lazy boy, at a bar with nervous supporters or in Washington witnessing history be made, we all felt it. We watched  as our under-dog Habs set out and did exactly what they did in games 5 and 6 – outwork the Caps, score timely goals, and sacrifice body and limb to keep the puck out of Jaroslav Halak’s net. It was as exciting and glorious a moment as Habs fans have had in nearly 20 years when the final whistles blew and the players raced off of the bench to congratulate their goaltender who’s arms were held raised in victory. Habs fans around the globe celebrated into the wee hours of the morning.

    A curious thing happened next. First it was the papers.. Then the networks. It has since been echoed by countless bloggers and commenters since, who have tried to make sense of the comeback. It shouldn’t surprise me that there would be those who would not see the Habs victory, rather a Capitals loss. They talk of an implosion. They speak of how the Canadiens got ‘lucky’ to face the Capitals who were built for the regular and not post-season.

    Almost overnight, those outside of the enchantment of the Canadiens victory began stripping the luster off of the series upset. I’ve heard countless times now that it was “all Halak”, as though somehow that removes the validity of the victory. What a ridiculous notion given that the Habs blocked a mind-boggling 40+ shots in the final game alone in an attempt to defend a 1 goal lead. Halak’s performance was equally as impressive, and yet I can’t help but wonder why no one questions how Pittsburgh would have fared without Crosby, or where the Bruins would be without Raask?

    Incredibly, it seems as though the Canadiens have been given even less of a chance to win the 2nd round as they were given in the 1st when Washington was supposed to sweep 4 games. I said after game 4 that I’ve seen way too much playoff hockey to think that the series was over – and I meant it. I can’t predict that the Habs will win this series. The Penguins are the reigning champions and have earned every inch of respect that I have for them as a club. But there is a reason that you play the games. The pundits were shown just how much their predictions are worth when the team that would “struggle to win 1 game let alone 4″ did just that. All we can do as fans is watch and hope that the warriors that we’ve seen emerge in 7 playoff games thus far continue to battle in the manner that has made them so successful.

    There’s always a little extra excitement against Sid the Kid. Take it to them.

    Go Habs Go!!!

  • Game 7: Habs/Caps

    It feels good to even type that. Game 7. Habs fans are still riding high on the emotional win from Monday night. An opportunity to watch a game that we may just recall years from now in the same manner we remember other great performances though our history. Lets hope that the energy hasn’t left our squad without the jump they will no doubt need to win the final game of this series. While most people have noted that even without a series win Habs fans are impressed with their squad. But make no mistake. This is Montreal. These are the Canadiens. We want to beat every opponent that we face. We’re not happy unless we’re the Champions and so we must turn our attention from the incredible win just 48 hours old and focus our attention on the task at hand. Washington will be trying to out-do the 54 shot barrage that Halak faced Monday night. They will be as physical as they can be, and they will try to do all that they have done in the regular season to ensure that Montreal does not finish the unlikely comeback – one which Jose Theodore mustered against the Bruins so many years ago.

    While this game is scary to Habs fans, it is more imposing on the Caps. We need to pressure them. Force them to play defense which will be made that much harder to do without Tom Poti. We’ve seen it for most of this series, and it all comes down to 60 minutes.

    Go Habs Go!