Category Archives: Carolina Hurricanes

Breaking Down The Habs’ Remaining November Games

It’ll be a very interesting remainder of November for the Montreal Canadiens. The boys are in Ottawa now, (Kanata, way to the west of the city, where the rink is), getting ready to take on the dysfunctional Senators.

Then they’re at home Saturday to beat the Bruins, and we all know what this game means. It’s Patrick Roy Sweater To The Rafters Night.

Then the boys sleep in their own beds and wait for the Islanders on Monday.

After that, it’s a two game road trip, when they travel to Detroit next Wednesday, and then swing over to Washington for a Friday game against the Caps.

They then close out the month the following Saturday when the Sabres visit.

 

What does all this mean? 

 It means every game will probably be a struggle for our struggling guys. Let’s see – Ottawa, Boston, the Islanders, Detroit, Washington, and the Sabres. How many games will they win here?

 Boston and Detroit should be tough ones. The Sabres and Washington will also be no picnic. Montreal seems to play flat in Washington. I went to a game there in the 1980’s with a bunch of guys on a beer-soaked, rented car roadtrip, and the Habs lost 5-0.  

 And opening game this year in Buffalo, the Habs lost in a shootout and were flat, a sign of things to come.

 If all the stars and planets are in alignment, Montreal should kick the Islanders ass.

 Which brings us to Thursday night’s game in Ottawa. The Senators have stunk this year. There’s no other way to say it. It’s a team in turmoil, it seems. I don’t know why. They’ve got Alfredsson, Heatley, and Spezza, for goodness sakes. That’s a lot.

But I suppose they’re missing most everything else, although journeyman goalie Alex Auld has been better than expected.

 Montreal needs to start in Ottawa, pick up steam, and make their presence felt in all these games mentioned. Their power play needs to explode. They have to quit taking ridiculous penalties, which I blame Guy Carbonneau for. A Stanley Cup contender is a disciplined team.

Alex Kovalev needs to break out. Why does he feel he needs to be pretty on the ice? Pretty doesn’t usually work. Power works. And as Kovalev goes, the team goes. We saw this last year.

 Carey Price needs to play at least five of the six remaining November games, preferably all six. The Kostitsyn boys, both of them, have to play like last year, although Andrei has been fairly good. Sergei hasn’t.

The defence has to tighten up. Price faced 48 shots in Carolina. That’s unacceptable.

 Also, they’re showing that they’re weak clearing the puck. It can’t be that difficult to shoot the puck out. But other teams have seemed to have figured out how to stop it. Why is that? Carbonneau again, I think.

 And I’ll mention it again. Quit taking stupid penalties. It kills momentum. The gunners sit on the bench while the penalty killers work. How can Carbonneau stop this insanity? Start benching those who take bad, ill-timed penaties. Do something.

In my book, the penalty-taking is the biggest killer of all.

Habs Lose. How Low Can They Go?

There’s lot of good games out there. Checkers, cricket, lawn bowling, tiddley winks, pulling out nose hairs.

 

So why watch hockey?

 

Because when we watch hockey, we see Sergei Samsonov score and play well,  which he never does. Only tonight. When he plays the Habs. When he ties the score 1-1.

 

And then his team, the Carolina Hurricanes, win 2-1.

 

When we watch hockey we see our favourite team take more stupid penalties, make more bad passes, forget how to score, and manage one measly power play goal, something they were good at in past lives.

 

I think we’re on the verge of several heads rolling. I smell a trade, a shake up.

 

Maybe they’ll bring Samsonov back.

 

Hey, has anyone heard the West Indies-Pakistan cricket score?

 

Game Notes:

 

Alex Tanguay is on a pace for nearly 40 goals, but it didn’t look like it tonight.

Saku Koivu is on a pace for nearly 30 goals, but it didn’t look like it tonight.

Alex Kovalev is on a pace for nearly 25 goals, but it didn’t look like it tonight.

Georges Laraque is on a pace to score no goals and no assists this year. He didn’t play tonight.

I’m betting Josh Gorges will score before Georges Laraque.

 

 

 

 

Francis Takes One For The Team And Kovalev Wins It With A Kovalev Move

It appears that Montreal fire hydrant and rock steady 5’8″ defenseman Francis Bouillon, who took a puck in the lower part of his face, is okay. Maybe some chicklets lost, or maybe a near-miss to the throat, but regardless of some pain, or marshmallows and ice cream for dinner, he’ll be fine. Thank God.

 

That was scary.

 

And his team won 3-2 with a shootout goal by Alex Kovalev. And like every win, even though ugly, it gets my hopes up that they’ll build and build and turn this lucky win into a bunch of wins.

 

I hope this ever time.  

 

  Francis Bouillon could play on my team any time. Even at 196 pounds, he’s a tough little guy who’ll crash, bang, fight bigger men, make good heads-up plays, and most importantly, he’s a small man who who plays like a big man.

When he skated off the ice quickly, holding his mouth or throat area, and a couple of trainers ran to help, it scared me. It reminded me of the Trent McCleary incident, where the player almost died.

When Bouillon skated off, it didn’t matter one bit whether the team won or lost. It was all about Francis, and when I read afterwards that he was okay, then I was okay too.

 

Big win. They don’t make it easy on themselves, but a big win.

 

Next Up:

 

Tuesday in Raleigh to tackle the Hurricanes. Build on tonight’s win.

 

That’s one small win for Hab mankind, one giant leap to get something going.