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Lightning regain 7th spot

  • The Canadiens failed to open up the lead on the Tampa Bay Lightning last night suffering a 2-1 loss at the Bell Centre. That means the Lightning return to 7th position in the East with a 1 point lead over the Canadiens. The Canadiens still hold one game in hand on the Lightning and the Thrashers who trail the Habs by only 3 points.

    The Canadiens were without Andrei Markov last night who is day to day with back spasms and like they usually do when without his services, they lost. The Canadiens looked confused at times during the beginning of the game and when they finally started getting some chances the recently absent Tampa defence decided to show up. The Canadiens had a lot of trouble getting the puck to the net as the Lightning players set up a wall and blocked something close to 30 shots. When the Canadiens managed to get on net Sean Burke proved himself coming up with big stops when he needed to.

    Cristobal Huet played well but this was the first game in awhile where he was outplayed by the opposing netminder. Huet slipped and lost his balance on the first Vincent Lecavalier goal and poor communication lead to a sloppy second goal by St-Louis. That’s all that was needed. The Canadiens managed a flukey rebound goal and nearly tied it up at the end but came up short.

    The Lightning won and despite their shot blocking they still didn’t look very convincing as a playoff team. Take away the flukey goals and they most likely don’t leave with 2 points. Atlanta and Tampa meet 3 times before the end of the season and It will probably take a miracle for the Lightning to hold on.

    The Canadiens play the Hurricanes next who they have not had much recent success against. Combined with the fact the Habs have no hope of catching Carolina and they they are not a divisional opponent – this is where we’ll probably see David Aebischer get his first start as a Canadien. Aebischer won’t sit on the bench forever and now that Huet posted a loss it’ll most likely be Aebischer’s introduction to Montreal Canadiens hockey.

    Good Luck.

  1. That shorthanded goal really put the nail in the coffin. I was happy that we got the one goal since a regular loss doesn’t hurt as much as being shutout.
    So now that Huet loss will Aebischer get the next start? I think that a game against Carolina at home may be a bit much to ask of him. I just hope that if he starts and looses then the 21,273 fans at the game will understand the Carolina isn’t some push over team and cut him some slack. Then again, if he wins then he would be greeted with open arms and would play again on Saturday.

  2. #2 riser8 says:
    March 14, 2006 at 6:10 pm

    Tough loss last night. But in todays nhl there are no easy games and sometimes you may play well and still end up on the wrong side of the scoreboard. Last nights game showed once again how valuable Andrei Markov is to this club. When he is not in the lineup they lose most of the time, as well his solid defensive play and creativity are lacking with the rest of the habs d-men. I expect the team to play a strong game against Carolina on thursday and come out with another big win. This was just a little bump in the road on the way to the post season!

  3. #3 Gumper says:
    March 15, 2006 at 12:00 am

    The fans know it’s a tense time for the team charging in this playoff run. I think the boo birds are asleep for now. Aebischer should be good to go. Let’s hope he puts in a good effort and of course, a win. Other than that, on the question of fan rebelion… I’d hate to see the crowd sour at this point especially now that the trade deadline is done and the Theo sitch is dead. Only arsewipes would boo at this point.
    We surely did miss Markov, I agree. One of those players that.. you don’t know how good he is till he’s out of the lineup.
    Crunch time, folks!!!

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