The Habs look to rebound against the upstart Edmonton Oilers tonight. While many have had a hard time letting go of some shoddy officiating on Saturday night, lets hope the Habs have had enough time to move on. That said – it is worth noting that Carey Fraser answered a lot of Canadiens fan’s questions about that call over at TSN and his verdict was that the teams should have played 4 on 4 for two minutes if all rules were followed as should have been. The difference here that Blunden should not have been assessed an interference call – as Dubinsky was in possession of the puck at the time of the check. Fraser correctly showed that the interference penalty was redundant because the too many men on the ice penalty (Rule 74.1) is called when an offending player makes contact with either the puck or another player – as was the case on this play. He also stipulates that under the instigator rule – the referees should have penalized Ryan Callahan given the distance he travelled to start a fight with Blunden. Going from 4 on 4 to 5 on 3 was hard at the time – and set the stage for a very difficult first period.
As for the Oilers – who in the world saw them jumping to an 8-3-2 record to start the season? Who saw their 38 year old, recently imprisoned goaltender leading them to a league least 1.54 goals/game average? Who out there thought that they would be able to kill almost 90% of the penalties that they were assessed? Its crazy!
The Oilers are a dangerous team right now. They bring a lot of unknown factors to the game given their relative youth and inexperience. Montreal will need to be FAR more disciplined tonight than they were on Saturday to take 2 points from this contest.
Go Habs Go!!!