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Fatigued Canadiens fall short

  • After the intensity of the Calgary/Montreal game on Tuesday you knew the chances of having another action packed intense game were less than likely.

    Entering the barren wasteland known as the United Center with it’s bleak lighting and thousands of vacant seats was quite a different atmosphere than a raucous Bell Center. The Habs were done from the start.

    A great drive to the net by Havlat early in the game resulted in a goal even though the puck just slid off his stick. The go ahead goal was a clear error by Niinimaa who couldn’t get the puck out up the boards and lost it deep behind the net.

    The Canadiens fatigue showed and they were lifeless for most of the game. The thing is, so were the Blackhawks.

    Were it not for Khabibulin the Blackhawks probably wouldn’t have won that game. The Hawks have a chance with the Bulin Wall playing the way he can, the way he did in the 04 Lighting cup run.

    Next up for the Habs is the Jose Theodore vs David Aebischer grudge match. This should be great, with Brisebois also returning to the Bell Center. Now that’s atmosphere.

    Will the fans welcome Theo back or chant his name mockingly? This game is for more than just two points and you know everyone is going to be ready for it.

23 Comments
  1. They’re gonna mock the Paris Hilton out of him! I’m just pissed that I’m gonna miss the game because I’m gonna be at a wedding.
    Either way, last night was a decent effort considering how hard the night before was. Now we just need to get ready for Saturday night; because like Habs Blog said, ‘This game is for more than just two points’ and this opportunity isn’t going to come along very often.

  2. Souray needs to learn how to handle the puck in his own end, the same with Ninnymom….talk about the Habs goalie feeling like the Habs defense is just another line of the offense…the defense has to do better than passing the puck to the other teams’ wingers…honestly. Montreal needs size, maybe a trade package of Souray and Huet can net the Habs with a decent defenseman perhaps….what a contrast in style, Huet with moving out of the way so the puck can go in, and Abby having to put up with Souray and Ninnyma helping the other team…hello, where is the Habs defense???more like an insurgency….maybe it is time to bring back the rookies, they probably have a better work ethic….

  3. Would’nt it be ironic is Brisebois scores and Theo gets an assist?!

    But thats too crazy – i predict 4-2 victory with 2 Higgins goals.

  4. #4 Leaf Hater says:
    October 19, 2006 at 3:29 pm

    Josh TH hit hit the nail on the head. Souray is a defensive liability in our end. He is slow and awkward ans has been on the ice for alot of 5 on 5 goals. Wht do we play him on the PK? He is fantastic on the PP but he plays too much at even strength and the play late in close games. Will Carbo start to re-allocate the ice time based on situation instead of reputation. For all you Dandy trashers, this guy plays strong defensive hockey, eats up minutes and keeps his mouth shut and is well respected by his teammates. He will be missed. He never gets any PP time for some reason and without it you can’t get points. Last he was #2 +/- defensman and played 82 games and was once of the best players in the playoffs. This coaching staff heeds to be less rigid in theri pairings and ice allocation. What has Markov done this year?

  5. You all seem to be persuaded by the final result that Montreal played really crappy. However, we completely outplayed the other team, especially in the second period. We should have been up 3 or 4 – 1 by the end of the second. The pucks just didn’t go in and Khabibulin had a great night.
    This loss is like recieving a bad beat in poker after outplaying your opponent. Chicago got lucky after being outplayed, as simple as that.

  6. #6 CH fan1 says:
    October 19, 2006 at 3:55 pm

    as far as I’m cocerned, we have no defence. Souray? pathetic! Maybe he can shoot the puck from the blueline, and score some goals from there, but that’s about it. he is a total liability on defence. also he’s very, very slow. The only thing he’s great at, is giving up the puck to the opposition. he keeps costing us goals as a result of bad giveaways. Maybe he’s colorblind, because he thinks the opposition’s jersey is red too! also, we don’t have a 2nd line. Carbo needs to shake up the lines; we can’t have only 1 line scoring, and the other lines doing nothing. For the most part, kovalev and Samsonov are invisible. Put Latendresse on the 2nd line, and move Samsonov to the 3rd line. I have a bad feeling in my gut, that tells me Samsonov will be last year’s version of BONK! in other words, 0 GOALS! I can’t see him scoring goals; he just doesn’t seem to fit in. Why is that?I read where Nedved and perreault(centers), are still available. Go for it! Plekanec doesn’t have the talent to score goals, and he shouldn’t be on the 2nd line. Go get Nedved or Perreault for that line. Move Plekanec to the 3rd line, with Johnson and Samsonov. I think this will be a long year defensively for us! Also, WE ARE TAKING WAY TOO MANY PENALTIES! We are spending half the game in the penalty box. That can’t continue! It shows a lack of DISCIPLINE! It’s the coach’s fault. They must teach the players control and restraint. If we were better defensively, these lapses in judgement would never happen! MAKE CHANGES! or suffer the consequences!

  7. #7 jfk0202 says:
    October 19, 2006 at 4:55 pm

    I agree our defense is weak…but everyone picks on Souray…what about Rivet. Leave Souray alone. He gets smoked alot…I don’t like him ont he ice at the end of the game. But common Rivet is just as bad. Sure he is our ironman. But he gets beat just as easy if not easier than Souray. Atleast Souray is on the receiving end of a sweet move when he is beat…Rivet just gets flown by with speed. What was he doing when Iginla got sent on a breakaway shorthanded. His shot gets blocked..he sees Iggie break for center and he stands there. Anyway as I said atleast Souray is scoring. He’s a defensive liability but he’s tough..he was the first to Downey’s aid after the hit and we have all seen him crank his wrist and let off a blistering shot. Reduce his time…put him mostly on the PP…keep him on the bench for all i care or down the hallway warming up his arm and wrists…then unleash the fury on the PP. But honestly what has Rivet done???

  8. #8 CH fan1 says:
    October 19, 2006 at 5:23 pm

    True. Pick your poison. Rivet is no better or worse than Souray. and let’s not forget Streit! Oh my God! Collectively, they’re like swiss cheese! So many holes. And all the penalties? I think Ketchup flows out of the bottle faster than Souray can skate! Pathetic!

  9. So this is how people react after only the 1st regulation loss of the season?!?! Why is everyone so pesimistic all of a sudden? ‘had a gut feeling’!?!? easy to say things like that after a loss i guess.

    So you can look at this two ways:
    1) We’re ranked second in the division behind Buffalo (nothing to be ashamed of considering we’ve given them the best run for their money thus far); resultingly 4th in the conference. The argument for this is that it’s still early in the season so this doesn’t really count.
    OR in that case
    2) Our D needs some work and blah blah blah BUT since it’s early in the season no need to have a panic attack since there’s lots of opportunity to improve and get problems worked out.

    As for Sourray, as far as I can tell he’s been more of an asset than a liability…3 goals and 2 assists in 6 games. I do agree though that Carbs should consider remanaging some lines. Maybe playing him less is a good idea and obviously play him on the PP (I think everyone could agree on that.)

  10. #10 Habs#1 says:
    October 19, 2006 at 6:16 pm

    Wow, after ONE regulatoin loss it seems as though everybody with the ecxeption of fan 3 is pounding on the big red button the says PANIC.

    So our defence is bad? Chicago scored 2 goals?? Big freakin deal, and the second one was a Ninnamaa giveaway. Rivet and Souray have outplayed Markov to this point and everyone slags on Rivet just because Stillman’s series winner went off of his stick. Rivet is the second best leader on this team and just as good as Jason Smith, Steve Staios, Willie Mitchell, an overated and overpayed Jay McKee and Mattias Norstrom. Is he the most talented guy? no. But guess what. The 70′s are over folks. The Habs will NEVER have a team completely stacked with skill guys. The Oilers showed how far you get with a lot of grit and heart guys, Rivet is that guy.

    As for Souray, he’s just as good as Brad Stuart, Lubamir Vishnovski, Sergei Gonchar or John-Micheal Liles. He does have defensive lapses but so what? Everyone does. Would you rather have Philly’s defence??

    The way the Bulin Wall was playing last night the Habs wouldn’t have one anyway. And Andrei Markov has been their worst defenceman so far.

    And Gainey is not going to make any Panic trades when his team has gotten points in 5 of their six games and are sitting fourth in the conference. Souray isn’t going anywhere till at least the trade deadline and that’s only if the Habs are out of it, Rivet is almost guarranteed to get re-signed because Carbonneau and Gainey have shown that, with Downey, Begin and Murray, they’re going to keep their meat and potatoes players.

    And with Downey out, he’s even considering retirement apparently, Latendresse is stapled to the fourth line. The only players the might consider switching are Sammy and Perezhogin. Plekanec isn’t used to playing on the second line yet and needs time to adapt, not everyone is a Chris Higgins who can just turn it on when put with talented line mates and I still believ and always will the Kovalev is heartless and needs to go.

    Abby is now the #1 guy.

  11. Cmon guys, don’t be that pessimist.

    We have a great team this year if you compare to others years, not a team to win the stanley cup now, but it’s always improving.

    Our defense is not our force for sure. (Where is our force btw lol). But do not forgot we don’t have Bouillon, big part of last year defense, and Dandeneault wasn’t there yesterday. So you have to give times to others, that mean Souray get more ice time than he should probably. For the one who said he cost us more than he give to us, I am not sure about that. Would we have won against Calgary without him ? He doesn’t play THAT bad in defense. Yes he can get beaten more easily 1 on 1 than some other defense man and sometimes make big mistakes but there are others who make more little mistakes. For Niinima, he still need some time for adjustment, but I hope he get his play like he already did some years ago.

    My concern is with Samsonov and Kovalev. These guys are not able to play together or or not able to play at all. They need to do something or it’s gonna be a long year for them but for us too. I am not sure it was a good idea to exchange Ribeiro (at least he was scoring with them, not like plekanec).

    The third line is playing crazy. I really love these guys. Bonk and Johnson are crazy in penalty killing and against the big lines. As for Latendresse, he play on the 4th line, doesn’t have lot of Ice time and he need time now. He is not trying to play great like he can, but not looking bad so let’s see. I just hope we don’t try to do like we do so many times with other french guy, some power forwards in juniors became defensive guy in nhl :( .

  12. #12 t8ter says:
    October 19, 2006 at 8:23 pm

    I agree with the last few comments pretty much! There are some areas that need addressing but I think we have a pretty entertaining team thus far! It has been a long time since we have had as much fire power as we are able to ice right now, and we have a fast team which is moving with the times. Our defence has been an area of concern but it is also an area right now where injuries have taken there toll. If WE have the puck THEY can’t score. I don’t think we have been outshot by anyone yet and we are starting to get scoring from different players!!! We have two starting goalies! The season is early!

    GO HABS!!!!!!!!!

  13. #13 CH fan1 says:
    October 19, 2006 at 9:11 pm

    scoring from different players? what games have you been watching? only 1 line is scoring! That’s it! that’s not enough!When only 1 line is producing, it’s real easy for the opposition. just key on that 1 line, and poof! no scoring at all.

  14. Souray, Rivet and Streit???? What about Markov’s imitation of Breeze-by on Havlat’s goal in the first two minutes of the game? Was he tired already or did he just plain forget that the game was, in fact, ongoing? Optomism aside; the Hab’s defence is plain, god awful! I never really appreciated how important Bouillon was to this team’s defence last year. Oh well, at least having Brisebois back in town on Saturday will remind us about how bad things can possibly get. We better hope that Dandenault and Bouillon have a speedy recovery.

  15. For the person who said the Habs haven’t been outshot yet. Check your stats again. Game 1 – shots 37 to 27 in favor of Buffalo. Game 2 – shots 38 to 33 in favor of Toronto. Game 3 – shots 28 to 23 in favor of Philadelphia. Game 4 – shots 27 to 25 in favor of Ottawa. That they managed to win games 2 and 3 had more to do with Aebischer than anything else. Don’t kid yourselves that the Canadiens are as good as their record currently indicates. Aebischer needs a little help out there from the D. If Markov is going to let a player like Havlat skate right by without even giving him a look maybe he should communicate that fact to Aebischer so the goalie can go out and check the oncoming player himself.

  16. Fan, check out the individual stats! i know we have alot of players capable of more but I do believe we are getting points from more than one line. What have we played seven games ? If only one line is scoring then why as you say haven’t they been shut down? Take a deep breathe fan and maybe go have some supper! GO HABS!!!

  17. #17 PACTUM SERVA says:
    October 19, 2006 at 10:50 pm

    Wow i would hate to see if we started the season 0 in 5.And people wonder why no one wants to play in montreal.Relax guys

  18. #18 riser8 says:
    October 19, 2006 at 11:41 pm

    Pactum I could not have said it better….relax people take a bloody pill and get over the short comings of this team. Trust me when I tell you that they are like the other 29 teams in the league….they all have some weaknesses and even if the Habs have a great season they could still lose 25-30 games this year. Shit…one loss and you would think that the world is falling apart. Get over it!

  19. Lots of good solid posts in the last 9. I fully agree with Habs#1 and the others: let’s take it easy. Many adjustments to make, as for most teams, but the start has been by and large positive.

    Souray remains an overall plus and Kovalev remains a late starter, but Higgins and Koivu have been great; Abby’s risen to the challenge. I’m just as worried as everyone about the amazing invisible Samsonov and trust he will be able to turn it on during the next 5-10 games. Otherwise he’ll have a lot more pessimists to deal with!

    Let’s channel the emotion and beat Theo Saturday!!

  20. #20 Yamstone says:
    October 20, 2006 at 11:52 am

    I for one, am really happy to the start of this season. I have to agree that our defence is suspect, but we are killing penaties and in the stats, anyway, we are among the leauges best defensively.

    Some other thoughts……

    Habs fans were screaming for Bob to make some deals for this year…and everyone was thrilled with the pick-up of Samsonov.I was not one of those people…I had a feeling he would be a bust…the only hope was that he and kovy would click…….has not happened. I would trade kovy and sammy for a big center and a good defenceman, but I am not a GM…and Bob rules…I have faith..he will not panick, nor has the need to this early…we have some cap space..we have a good solid team so far….maybe Philly is willing to strike a deal soon!!

    I am a die hard Habs fan and some of these posts start to sound like leaf fans…want results now by the supposed “big trade”. I think you have to build a team…in todays NHL the days of winning 4-5 cups in a row is gone, never gonna happen again..get use to it and enjoy the best team we have had in a number of years

  21. #21 joshtm says:
    October 20, 2006 at 10:05 pm

    The point is, there is no offensive heart here. Samsonov was a liability to Edmonton and with his penalties all but single-handedly destroyed Edmonton’s chances….why do you think they were so eager to let him go?

    Apart from the occasional rush by a single Canadien, we don’t have an offensive plan, all we hope for is the puck will find its own way into the net…heck it’s like the Habs offensive line doesn’t play as a team most times and wait for the best time to practice passing, hello Carbo…a game is not practice, you cannot tell your offenisvie lines to pass and play like its a practice…eventually they will have to dig deep into the past and remember the Rocket, the way he would blitz the net, follow through on shots, chase the rebound and shoot for the net, not in the general direction of the net….

    The offense and the defense are being bullied by the bigger NHL…its like Carbo and Gainey don’t want to hire players who are taller than they are…talk about being insecure perhaps….who knows.

    What is wrong with being an offensive team while having the leagues’ best penalty kill? You only get that with paying for a big name, big time, expensive quality player, you get what you pay for….

  22. Kevin Lowe tried hard to resign Samsonov. The morning he was too sign the dotted line with the Habs, the oilers made one last push offering a three year deal close to 3.5 per. ALso the oilers had absolute no interest in Sykora who in all fairness did struggle the last two NHL seasons but after losing Sammy Lowe felt they had to add a top 2 line player although did not want to give Sykora close to what he received. Kevin Lowe was also quoted saying he was upset Sammy left cause he was told my his agent when first being traded that he woud give the oil the first chance to resign him. Although you may have a good point abou this play so far you must at least give correct facts for anyone to respect your opinion.

  23. We lose one game and everyone goes nuts. IS this a site for the media? But one glooming negative is Craig Rivet. It is pretty obvious he cannot contribute enough to this squad to keep his salary. At least Souray has many positives(amazing shot,scares the crap outta everyone, leader, good with the media, proven all star) to go with his flat feet.

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