montreal canadiens hockey – habs blog RSS

Panthers maul Habs

  • Short summary from the 5-1 loss to the Panthers.

    • Eddie the Eagle can still soar from time to time.
    • Belfour > Abeischer
    • Abeischer’s weak goal gave them the game.
    • Michael Ryder needs to play with Higgins. No goals in 9 games.
    • Sergei Samsonov is not earning his check.
    • Alex Kovalev looks injured.
    • Alexander Perezhogin, come out come out wherever you are!

    2 for 2 on the 4 game road trip. Both big wins, both big losses. The Habs can’t put it together for more than 2 games straight. You never know which team will show up on any given night.

22 Comments
  1. Real ugly effort starting from the goaltender out. When you are playing your third game in four night’s and your opponent is playing their first game in four day’s you obviously need your goaltender to come up big to give yourself
    a chance….unfortunately this was not the case with Abby, but he was not alone as he had many passenger’s with him last night. Look on the bright side they at least were 2-2 on this their longest road trip of the year. Head back home and get ready for Atlanta…not much else to say.

  2. This is the type of game that shows, sadly, that the Habs are not yet ready to put the team effort needed to be better than 7th in the conference. Though they will remain a very dangerous team throughout, it’s hard to win the Cup at this pace.

    Abby had a bad game last night for sure, but the rest of the team wasn’t there for him either. He was peppered with shots and the other 5 Habs on the ice looked as if they were out for a morning skate!

    HB: I fully agree with your comments, especially Samsonov and Kovalev. It looks like Kovy will take another 3 week knee draining or something (i.e. hopefully not more major surgery) very soon… back in time for the end of the season sprint. Samsonov is not exactly “bad” on the ice, but he’s playing significantly below his potential, no matter that line he plays on and the ice-time he gets. He needs some fire.

    Ryder’s been hot and cold through his short career… not sure what the solution is there, but we can count on him coming out of it, he’s a competitor!

    Though game coming up, Atlanta could cause way more problems than the Leafs and the Panthers, and Saturday night at home hasn’t been friendly to the Habs. Cross your fingers the Habs show up for a big effort!!!!

  3. Riser8 hit on a good point. However, neither Abby or Huet could have saved them. There is no way that any team should play back to back games on the road — or even back to back games with travel in between.

    Look at what happened to the Habs in October going to Chicago the night after a hard fought win against Calgary at home. And witness the Habs easy win against an obviously tired Carolina team after the Canes travelled back home from Atlanta the night before.

    There are exceptions like Philly’s win against both Anaheim and LA back to back (last night and the night before). But the Ducks and Kings play in arena’s about 1 hour apart, and the Flyers no doubt didn’t budge from their hotel in between.

    Is it me, or is these sort of scheduling fiascos more prevalent this year?

  4. They had no energy…none. There is no excuse to look that bad. But think about 4th road game in 6 days, 3rd in 4 nights…it would have been unreal if we pulled that off. I expected a loss, but 5-1 yikes. As for Kovalev, as injured as he may seem he still looked like one of the best out there last night. But hey who knows, Aebi saves that awful goal, Ed the way over the hill eagle doesn’t shine yet once again against the Habs and we could of had a different outcome. That second goal took their sails out of it. First period was decent for a change. But karma always comes back and bites you in the ass. Gerber let that softy in a few games ago while Ottawa was on the hunt back sooo. Either way, bad bounces, our not to great goaltending, their above normal goaltending, 4 games in 6 nights…we should of had a better effort. On the bright side I felt Pleks started to play better out there, looking like himself of last year.

  5. “Alexander Perezhogin, come out come out wherever you are!” – if the rest of the team shared his team high +9 we’d be in even better shape.

    Almost all of the Canadiens goals against seem to be scored in the following fashion:

    1) shorthanded.
    2) turnover/failure to clear the puck out of our own zone.

    Given that (2) either leads to an even strength goal or a powerplay for the other team, I would say our defensive zone clearing is where we are weakest. In games where we do well, we are reasonably effective at clearing the puck out of our zone. Maybe it’s all relative though – the name of the game today is puck pursuit and forecheck pressure – maybe the Habs failure(s) to clear the puck is just a result of the opponent having an effective forecheck on that night.

    Can anyone remember a goal scored against the Habs on an odd man rush this year?

  6. #6 jfk0202 says:
    November 17, 2006 at 1:18 pm

    Good points bauld, not too many have been rushes. I have thought since the start of the season that out defensive zone breakout and clearing is our weakest link. Look at the TO games, they looked on the powerplay in our zone the whole time. I personaly think its due to our style, our clearances tend to always be attempted fast breaks to use speed and skill. We rarely just flip the puck out. So the team tries a few sweet plays to start a great break out, don’t get it out, panic try to flip it out but fail due to bad bounces (how many times did u see a puck hop over a stick, hit a panther in the foot, stick,back, hit our own player) and then its real panic time…but you are right. Last night and most nights, I notice its a weak attempt or bad attempt to clear the puck thatt causes the goal.

  7. I think his + rating has a lot to do with playing with Bonk and Johnson.

    All I meant was that I want to see some scoring out of this guy and so does the coaching staff.

  8. #8 fanatic1 says:
    November 17, 2006 at 3:29 pm

    the 1 thing that’s consistent with the habs, is their inconsistency! They are unable to put out the effort for 3 games in a row; they have difficulty clearing pucks, especially when playing teams that forecheck well;their goaltending (with Aebischer in nets), is very weak; and their offence, at even strength , is non existent. The only reason we beat Tampa, was because of our PP. all 3 goals were on the PP. And, if you take away Souray, then our PP is non existent as well. The only area we seem to excel, is killing penalties, which we have lots of experience at, considering the fact we are #6 in the league in taking penalties.Even tho our record is pretty good, it’s also a bit deceiving considering the teams we’ve played. they can’t rest on your laurels all season long. Eventually it catches up to you, and then your weaknesses show up, in a big way.This team does not have heart or enough desire to win. Last night, after Aebischer let in that 2nd goal, the team just withered, and basically stopped playing. They gave up. That’s not acceptable. Look at Buffalo. they were down by 3 GOALS, in 2 consecutive games, and came back to win. There have been alot of comebacks this year by various teams. The game isn’t over when you’re down by 2 goals, especially when the 2nd period had just began. They need to dig deep to find that inner strength to want to play hard in every game.On this road trip, they displayed very poor efforts in games against the leafs and panthers. So, basically they are saying, if they get behind, game over! We really don’t have the leadership to come back in games. Koivu isn’t doing enough! This team is at best, an 8th seed to make the playoffs, because they seem to be content with that, and not striving for more!

  9. Koivu is not the problem, but there’s no question that heart and consistent effort are lacking. Look at the games they win — lots of heart and effort. I think consistency is a team thing that the whole staff (coaches and players) need to deal with.

  10. #10 PACTUM SERVA says:
    November 17, 2006 at 4:08 pm

    Yes i agree.It would be nice to see the boys put a string of wins together.We cant seem to shake this problem for the past couple of years.

  11. Habs Blog: I agree that it would be great if Perezhogin could score more – however, I’m certainly not disappointed with his performance so far. He is an awesome skater and strong on the puck (like Kostitsyn) … just needs to be a better finisher. That goal he scored in the 2nd game against T.O. was awesome – it would be great to see more play like that.

  12. #12 jfk0202 says:
    November 17, 2006 at 5:12 pm

    Fan1…I think consistency is abig problem but to say we have no heart or drive to win because we don’t come back is not right. We have come back this year just the times we don’t like last nite where yes they did give up and was awful to watch, other times we have. After last night we are 11th int he league trailing after 2. We are 2-3-2 after trailing after the second period which is not bad. The problem is sometimes we just give up..and look horrible. I will attribute last nite to once again as i said 4 games (on the road) in 6 nights. No excuse but atleast a partial explanation.

  13. #13 fanatic1 says:
    November 17, 2006 at 6:56 pm

    I didn’t say we have no heart. We just don’t have ENOUGH HEART! Some players come to do work every night,( just like blue collar workers), but not enough SHOW UP every night.I understand that they were tired last night, but that doesn’t mean they should quit on a game.No excuses necessary. Strange things can happen in a game, to put a team back in the game. And look who we played? Florida! not exactly an elite team.It will be interesting to see which team shows up against Atlanta.It’s too bad, but I think they need a pep talk before every game, just to lift them, and give them some drive, and to let them know what’s at stake.But understand that these are professional athletes, and they should already know what’s required of them. After all, they are not 12 years old.! It’s time they get with the program!

  14. The 1st goal was a result of two horrible turnovers in our own zone. First Rivet had plenty of time to clear and he passed it up the middle to the opposing de. Then 30 seconds of scrambling was the result and eventually Lats set up the panthers for the goal. Why cant he pass like that to our own guys?

  15. 4 Points out of a possible 8 would be considered just about acceptable had they put the effort in!?!
    But the way I see it the habs should not have been “man handled” they way they were in T.O and FLA that is UNACCEPTABLE! Trades aren’t the answer,,, this team needs a HEART TRANSPLANT!!!As disappointed as I am (Much like my parents when I’dcome home with a D)

    I still love’em though!

    Go Habs Go!

  16. #16 HaBs4EveR says:
    November 18, 2006 at 12:35 am

    I just wanna say that, even though the game was very bad, it’s not all abby’s fault. It just happened that he was in nets when the habs played terribly against Toronto and Florida. Yes he did let some weak shots in. But had the team played hard the whole game, they wouldn’t of lost by 4 goals. Abby only looked bad on two out of the four he let in. So for all those that think that Abby should become No.2 in goals, well I find that harsh. Huet also had a bad period in nets in the beggining of the season but we let him get back in shape so lets let abbeisher the chance to show us what he’s really made of again.

  17. There will be games that we play well and still lose because of bad bounces or solid goaltending. However Thursday was not that. If we had somehow won that game I would have felt quilty. We deserved to lose 5-1. Maybe 5-2. You just cant throw games away like that. It reminded me of when I played and we would go outta town and party all night and lose bad the next morning. But no excuse for NHLers to play like that. We played like a bunch of Yashin’s!

    I still love the team but hopefuly that is the last game like that for awhile. Too bad we were not at home, at least the fans would have been all over them.

  18. I think that the Habs have two very good goalies but they really don’t have the stellar goalie that stands out above the other! If you look at the league leading goalies they can make back to back huge saves and shake it off like “It’s just my job” and continue to play like they too are part of the team! Teams seem to respond to this in a more positive way than when the goalie makes a save and then lets the next in because he was still out of position! Who knows??? Maybe if this happened then our defence would think “perhaps I should put more effort into try to do my job than talk to the media in between periods” and say stuff like “we were out worked in that period” or “we got off to a slow start” Right Sheldon?

    Go Habs!!!!!!!!!

  19. #19 smiler2729 says:
    November 18, 2006 at 2:25 pm

    Who’s starting in goal vs. Atlanta?

  20. Huet is starting, and Carbo says that the 2 game per goalie rotation is now over. Huet seeming has taken the # 1 job back. Good news!

  21. #21 HaBs4EveR says:
    November 18, 2006 at 3:32 pm

    hey, just a reminder, have all of you signed the quebec nhl petition? I’m just saying it because the signatures don’t seem to be going in as much as they used to. So if you know people that haven’t signed it yet, well get them to go on Quebecnhl.com! Imagine the return of a Nordique-Habs rivalry!!!

  22. this is a test – sorry

Leave a Comment