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Game 7: Habs/Pens

  • 9:37 am. I’m sitting at my keyboard, already literally feeling butterflies for tonight’s game against the Penguins. Call it a blessing or a curse, but there isn’t a thing outside of my family and friends that I care about more than this game. My own hockey career was cut short by the economic realities my family faced in the early 1990s. Even though I stopped playing competitively as a kid, I’ve always felt a certain inner peace when I lace up my skates and hit the ice – whether on a pond or in an arena. In my mind every time I put blades on my feet, I’m in Game 7 playing for the Canadiens. I’m sure most of us grew up feeling the same way about hockey et Nos Glorieux. There is a reason that I still get goosebumps when I think back to the ovation that Maurice Richard received on the night the Canadiens closed the Forum with a 4-1 win over the Dallas Stars. There isn’t a Habs fan who was alive who doesn’t remember the night Saku Koivu returned to a similar show of gratitude after battling Cancer? Fans of this team care. And while from time to time we all get wrapped up in the outside distractions that are inevitable when we’re talking La Sainte-Flanelle, it all comes down to what happens on the ice. When Michael Cammalleri scored to make Game 6 2-2, Habs fans showed again why they are the best in the universe by cheering at top level for the entire commercial break, leading Michel Lacroix to hold off on announcing Andrei Kostitsyn’s assist until play resumed. Tonight fans of our team will pack the Bell Centre again, to cheer on our Canadiens who will play Game 7 in the unfriendly confines of Mellon Arena. They will be bolstered by those of us who reside in every city on the continent – and cheer by proxy, hoping to watch our team victorious as the two teams shake hands to close the series.

    If the Game 7 win over the Capitals was considered by many as the Habs biggest victory since 1993, what implications does tonight’s contest against the defending Stanley Cup Champs hold? After the year we’ve had its hard to be overly confident going into this last game of the conference semi-finals. We all saw what happened to Vancouver last night. Anything can happen tonight. This much is true: The Penguins are more talented, and more experienced when it comes to this game. But in a one-game-for-all-the-glory contest, I sure like Jaroslav Halak. I sure like the leading goal scorer of the playoff’s chances (Michael Cammalleri), especially if he fires more than 5 shots on net. I sure like PK Subban who lives for the big game, as shown by his 29+ brilliant minutes in filling in for both Markov and Gill.

    I wont make a prediction, because its a coin flip as to who wins tonight’s game. The Penguins are a fantastic team led by some of the best players this league has to offer. But if there is anything that our Habs have taught us over the past month, it is that they are a resilient bunch of buggers who have earned the belief that I have in them. They have one shot at a knockout, and I can’t wait for the puck to drop. There are millions of us who feel the same.

    Go Habs Go!!!!

  1. #1 Donnie says:
    May 12, 2010 at 10:48 pm

    Forget for a moment that this is our favorite team. Has anyone really sat and thought for a bit about the absolute magnitude of what they have accomplished already in these playoffs? Top 2 teams in the East, barr none, out, done, bounced by the “little engine that could” Remember this boys…it will be a legacy for years to come. Keep it up boys.

  2. #3 stanley says:
    May 14, 2010 at 1:24 pm

    If the Canadiens win the Stanley cup Halak will be worth 6 million to other NHL teams easily. Price will also fetch at least 4 million from another NHL team. With Plekanac worth 5 million and the Canadiens having to sign 10 players with $11 million I can easily see the Canadiens have Cederic Desjardins as the starter next spring!!!

  3. #4 Donnie says:
    May 14, 2010 at 10:14 pm

    Choices will have to be made for sure…but we’re not losing all 3….give Halak Plec’s money and hope for the best with Pricey. 6mil for a top notch goalie is worth much more than a 6 mil forward who gets 70 something points and does’nt take charge or lead his team. We’re good for the next few years with our “big little 3″…if Plec thinks he worth 6mil…let someone else give it to him. Keeping Halak is a must.

  4. #5 Senet1 says:
    May 15, 2010 at 8:02 pm

    There are many ways to look at this if someone signs an offer sheet for 6M for Halak, I say let them have him we get 4 first round draft picks from that team. Halak will always be a steady goaltender but one year does not a star make and Halak if he wants that amount then I would let him go to get the four first rounders. Price will not get anymore than 3M, but we will have to make the offer because again if anyone offers more than 3.1M we get first and third draft picks. I still believe that Price will be one of the best goalies in the NHL, remember he is still only 22 and we have been pretty hard on him. I saw a lot of maturity this year, along with frustration but I truely believe as he matures he will be in the top five goalies in the league by the time he is the same age as Halak (25). If I were going to trade someone to free up cap space it would be Markov, with PK coming we have our PP point man, we could live with Bergeron for another year if we can find a replacement for him. I would also like to trade Hamrlik and maybe we could package him with the Kost boys and free up some more cap space. Bottom line is Plex will want between 4.5 and 5M When looking at Cammy and Gionta money Plex fits in there somewhere but he has to prove he is worth it, so I would give him a 3 year deal for 14M. I think he may take it.

  5. #6 rocky says:
    May 15, 2010 at 9:50 pm

    The Kostitsyn brothers could not generate as much as a popcorn fart in return in a trade.

  6. #7 stanley says:
    May 17, 2010 at 1:09 pm

    Plex out scored both Cammy & Gionta this year. If you look at Cammy’s contract he will average 6 mil a year over the last 5 years of his contract. Gionta makes 5 million a year. Considering Plex plays the PP & PK and is extremely defensively responsible makes his numbers even that more impressive. Therefore 5 million is not a lot but not unreasonable by any stretch. The only question is if he will play ‘like a little girl’ in the Philadelphia series. 4 first round draft picks is $7.34 mil last I checked Senet. Considering Philadelphia, St-Louis, Detroit, & San Jose’s need for a Stanley Cup goalie I would say the Canadiens will let one of them go, but could lose both. I still say Sergei Kostitsyn’s benching is a big mistake. He is the youngest player (with the exception of Max) and the most gifted. Maybe the Canadiens should bring over Kostitsyn’s father or a Russian coach to whip them into shape. By the way the next Russian phenom Alexander Avtsin is coming this summer. He must feel welcome in Montreal after Jean Perron’s comments on 110% on Russians or maybe the comments were lost in translation!!!! Someone should explain to Jean Perron that the french players played as bad and the same opinion should be expressed about his own commrades. Pouliot(0 pts in ’10 playoffs), Bergeron(-10 on ’10 playoffs), Maxim Lapierre(’10 regular season), Latendresse(the whole time on the Canadiens). I have to give Lapierre some credit for the ’10 playoff performance.

    P.S.

    2009 Compensation

    * $994,433 or below – None
    * $994,433 to $1,506,716 – 3rd round pick
    * $1,506,716 to $3,013,434 – 2nd round pick
    * $3,013,434 to $4,520,150 – 1st and 3rd round pick
    * $4,520,150 to $6,026,867 – 1st, 2nd, and 3rd rd pick
    * $6,026,867 to $7,533,584 – 2 1st rd picks,2nd,3rd
    * $7,533,584 – 4 1st round picks

  7. #8 stanley says:
    May 17, 2010 at 1:19 pm

    Senet – before you say Cammy was injured, extrapolated Cammy’s numbers on would get the following: 50 points in 65 games which would be 63 points in 82 games which doesn’t surpass 70 points by Plex. Also, Cammalleri scored 1 goal in the playoffs before this play-off series so it did not come into consideration when negotiating his contract of 6 mil per year.

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