Category Archives: Sidney Crosby

Streak Reaches Four!


Now that’s some kind of season-opening road trip.

Four games, four wins. Success in Toronto, Boston, Ottawa, and a tidy 3-2 win in Pittsburgh on Tuesday. Road bonding. Kanata nightlife. Four goals during the stretch for new captain Max.

Now it’s the friendly confines of the Bell Centre on Thursday where this 2015-16 edition of the Canadiens will be introduced before tackling the visiting Blueshirts, who at this moment are considering calling in sick.

Zack Kassian, presumably watching this unfold, must be feeling lousy. He’s missing all this good stuff, and we could’ve used him to smash Chris Kreider’s ribs into bone dust.

And the game in Pittsburgh? Two goals by captain Max, beginning with the opener in the first frame after some nice work by Brendan Gallagher to get the puck over, and with Tomas Plekanec causing fine havoc in front.

The Pens would even things in the second after Nathan Beaulieu was caught at the enemy blueline, allowing Beau Bennett to skate in. (I hadn’t realized that parents named their kids ‘Beau’ nowadays, but apparently they do. They don’t seem to call them ‘Dennis’ though.)

But then it happened (in the game, not the kids’ names). Not only did Max’s second goal put his team ahead again, it was also on the power play of all things. A power play that was nicely quarterbacked by Jeff Petry. A power play that went 1/2 on the night and now stands at 2 for 16. Maybe Petry is the key to untangling this mess.

That’s one small step for the power play, one giant leap for mankind. Or something like that.

Later in the second, a bit of a deflection from far out fooled Carey Price, and the game was tied once again. It’s weird to type that – “from far out fooled Carey Price.” 

But we forgive him. And we’ll probably forgive him two or three more times this season.

The Canadiens won it in the third period after a broken play saw Dale Weise miss David Desharnais with a long stretch pass, but wee DD hustled to the corner, grabbed the elusive biscuit, and sent it to newcomer Tomas Fleischmann who made no mistake. And which kept the beauty of a streak alive and well..

A fine win, capped off by Price robbing Sidney Crosby with just 2:17 left in the game.

What a start to the season, and they have a chance to extend it to five in front of a rip roaring Bell Centre crowd on Thursday.

Again, Zack can’t be feeling great about this. It must be like being locked in a room while your buddies are splashing in the pool with Playboy bunnies.

Random Notes:

Pittsburgh outshot Montreal 33-30.

Everyone on the team has at least a point, except for Tom Gilbert, Alexei Emelin, and Devante Smith-Pelly. Max leads the team with 6, while Markov, P.K., and Galchenyuk sit at 4.

This, from Mike McKim on Facebook –

Knock, knock,
Who’s there?
Foreign who?
FOUR and OH!




Outnumbered In Overtime

It was a hard-fought, tight affair that was sent into overtime, with the Canadiens in tough after being given a too-many-men penalty.

Throw in a Tomas Plekanec broken stick that made it basically 4 Pens to 2 Habs, and an overdue Sidney Crosby swarming around like a man possessed, and it all coming to crashing halt when Crosby bulged the twine to give the visitors a 2-1 win.

Just no chance when Sid and the boys have what amounted to a two-man advantage in OT. I’m gonna blame the stick maker.

Nice goal by Max in the first though. A 2 on 1 with Gally, with Max sending a missile past Marc-Andre Fleury.

Now we wait until Wednesday before the Habs play again, when they travel to Columbus to meet the Blue Jackets.

In the meantime, I think I’ll have some………




The Great Brandy Saturley Checks In

Award-winning Victoria, BC artist Brandy Saturley sends along her hockey stick painting for us to enjoy. And below the painting, Brandy tells us, in her own words, her thoughts behind the piece.


And here’s Brandy Saturley –

“Earlier this year I completed two paintings paying homage to the history of the hockey stick. These two paintings reference a handful of the biggest stars to wear the number nine, apparently the most star-worn number in the NHL, as well as a current star wearing eighty-seven.

“I wanted to show the evolution of the ice hockey stick from the sticks created by the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia to current day. The Mi’kmaq First Nations are credited with the earliest forms of ice hockey play in Canada, as well as the creation of the first hockey sticks carved from Ironwood. Mi’kmaq First Nations were
Indigenous to Canada’s Maritime Provinces and the Gaspé Peninsula of Quebec.

“The sticks were first manufactured in Canada by Starr Manufacturing, under the brand name, Mic-Mac and were sold Internationally. Perhaps someday I will own one of these vintage sticks myself, until then they exist on canvas in my art studio.

“These pieces are painted on Renfrew hockey tape and canvas. I have been incorporating hockey tape more into my paintings as of late, I love the softening I get of the paint as it is absorbed into the primed tape. It also offers and ‘aging’ effect which gives the painting more character and texture. I am looking forward to experimenting with painting on hockey tape more as the new season is about to take the ice.

“A Mic Mac & Three Nine’s
Three Nine’s & An Eighty-Seven
Acrylic on canvas and Renfrew hockey tape, by Brandy Saturley

“Thank you for inquiring about these pieces and for sharing with your readers. I am currently preparing for a retrospective showing of my #ICONICCANUCK collection of paintings, some of which have been featured on this blog. An invite only grand opening will take place later this Autumn. More here – The Showroom Victoria.”


As always, thank you for your support. Happy hockey season!


The Art of Brandy Saturley
The Art of Brandy Saturley
The People of Canada

Habs Spank Sens

It seems there are no normal games when the Canadiens and Senators play each other.

Friday night  in Kanata saw a wild 7-4 win by the Habs over the sinking Sens after spotting Ottawa an early 3-0 lead.

It had been a dismal beginning for the Canadiens to be sure, shockingly finding themselves in a deep hole in under six minutes of play, but soon enough, pucks started finding their way behind a shaky Craig Anderson.

And when the dust had settled, the Canadiens had scored seven straight goals before Ottawa would notch a late one.

This was the same Craig Anderson who stoned the Habs last year in the playoffs. On this night, the Sens might have had better luck with Pamela Anderson.

The DDs burned it up again, with Max getting three plus two assists. Thomas Vanek had three assists and DD two.

I heard recently that some who study advanced stats have decided that because the DD line isn’t great defensively, they could hurt the team and should be broken up.

Talk about throwing water on a beautiful thing.

Guy Lafleur and Steve Shutt weren’t exactly defensive specialists either, but no one was complaining when they were popping 50 or 60 goals a season.

The way this game started, with three goals in under six minutes by Ottawa, it was certainly cause to be concerned. Was it one of those nights for Peter Budaj?

Were the Senators determined to pay back in a big way for being embarrassed at the Bell on March 15th?

Instead, Budaj was great. Tremendously sharp. The DD line would soon catch fire. And it all started when Andrei Markov bounced one in off Anderson from behind the line, near the side of the net.

Then it was off to the races, although the Sens would hit some posts and Budaj had to be sharp as a razor from time to time.

After Markov, the goals just kept coming, almost every second shot went in, and it became Weaver, then Max, Eller, Max, Max and DD, and it’s two big points and the Sens are basically screwed.

Random Notes:

Shots on goal – Ottawa 43, Montreal 23.

P.K. Subban rode the bench for most the first period after not being harder on checks during a couple of Sens goals. PK would see a very low 13:39 of ice time.

I truly disagree with Michel Therrien’s methods regarding P.K. A Norris trophy winner being treated like a raw rookie.

There were several scuffles throughout, including Galchenyuk and Karlsson, Tinordi and Gryba, and Gally and Neil, with a player scrum developing from it. But all in all, it could’ve been worse. It could’ve been a Canadiens-Nordiques type of affair.

George Parros played while Rene Bourque watched from the press box, and George not only almost had an assist on the night, but was also sent out to cool things down when characters like Zach Smith and Chris Neil were getting overly obnoxious.

Max scored his 36, 37th, and 38 goals of the season and when one looks at the top four goal scorers in the league, it’s Corey Perry with 41, Joe Pavelski with 39, Max with 38, and Sidney Crosby with 36.

How great is that?

Next up – Detroit at the Bell Saturday night. Should be a beauty, but more about that later.




Canadiens Win In A Shootout

Surprisingly, the Habs downed the Pens 6-5 in a shootout at the flightless bird barn, thanks to David Desharnais solving Marc-Andre Fleury and Peter Budaj stopping James Neal, Sidney Crosby, and Evgeny Malkin.

That’s what it came down to after an odd game that saw Montreal win even though Budaj, before the shootout, was often shaky and visions of Carey Price danced through my head.

Lots of scoring from both sides, the boys replied whenever the Pens took the lead, and I’ll take these two points in a New York minute, even though once again, it wasn’t the most impressive display.

Weird and mildly entertaining, but not overly impressive.

Brendan Gallagher broke the ice in the first period following early pressure by the Canadiens, but James Neal tied it when the puck trickled by Mr. Budaj.

Then, when a shot sailed over Budaj’s shoulder for a 2-1 Pens lead, the future didn’t look bright. In fact, I was wondering if backup Dustin Tokarski would be up to the task.

But Budaj stayed in and the game unfolded.

In the second frame, Daniel Briere, playing on the fourth line with Moen and Parros, tied things at two, but the seesaw battle would continue.

Pittsburgh went ahead with Lars Eller was in the box, but Max on the power play evened it again. It was going good. Then P.K. found himself in Michel Therrien’s bad books for about the tenth time this year it seems.

Of course, P.K. screwed up magnificently.
A Habs power play.
P.K. dangling with the puck.
P.K. getting stripped of said puck by Brandon Sutter..
Sutter scoring a shorthanded breakaway goal to put his team ahead 4-3 and PK in the doghouse.

Fodder for Michel Therrien to sit P.K. down for the rest of the game.

But all was not lose. Alexei Emelin, with his second goal of the year, sent a wrist shot from the blueline to tie the thing at four apiece.

And the weirdness kept on coming.

With Emelin in the box on a truly borderline call, the Pens went ahead 5-4, but then Tanner Glass was sent off for five minutes for elbowing Emelin, and Daniel Briere, with his second goal of the night, tied it at five.

After a scoreless overtime, it took DD to end it and give his team two big points.

Was it a good game? It had more stuff, the scoring was there, and they pulled it out. So I suppose, after my whining about lack of effort and no shots or goals, this was a stunning success.

Only seven more tough games in a row to go.

Random Notes.

The Pens outshot the Habs 32-29.

Throughout the five minute overtime, P.K. watched from the sidelines. I think Galchenyuk and Briere too. Galchenyuk was hustling and Briere had two goals and an assist, so the coach’s reasoning is a head-scratcher.

I hate all the freaking so-called lessons Therrien likes to teach different players. In fact, I’m sick of it. Especially when they’re trying to win a big game and these guys have the tools to do it.

In other news, Lars Eller was not Jean Beliveau on this night.

Jarred Tinordi hasn’t made the impact so far that Nathan Beaulieu did in his pre-Olympic stint.

Leafs in town on Saturday. No predictions here. Predictions are for gypsies.



Red, White, And GOLD

Team Canada was just too much for the Swedish team on a warm winter day in Sochi.

Too strong, too workmanlike, too solid on all fronts in blanking Tre Kronor 3-0 and ending this 2014 Olympics with gold and an astounding three goals allowed in six games.

What a sixty minute job by the Canadians and what a feather in Carey Price’s cap with his second straight shutout and just three total goals behind him in his three other appearances.

Carey was great, but this wasn’t a one-man show like it was with the Latvian goalie in Canada’s fourth game. It was Price and an unreal defence and an amazing group of forwards, all there to win gold, and they came through in spades.

There was no way the Swedes were going to win this game. The Canadians owned the ice at both ends, and goals by Jonathon Toews in the first, Sidney Crosby on a breakaway in the second, and Chris Kunitz with a great shot in the third was more than enough to put smiles on fans from sea to shining sea.

Great to see P.K. get his medal with the group. What a sensational smile he has, and his turn will come in four years when he and Price will lead the charge for another gold.

This Canadian win can only help Price and Subban with the Habs. They’ve seen what it takes, and it’ll translate into bigger and better things for them while wearing the CH.

Yes, I’m choked up now. I’m proud to be a Canadian. Proud of Team Canada. Proud of Carey Price.

Gold for Canada in men and women’s hockey.

It’s a moment for Canadians to cherish.

Thank you, Team Canada.



Canada Sends Americans Packing

Team Canada played a tremendously solid game against a good U.S. and now move on to meet the Swedes on Sunday for the gold medal.

As a proud Canadian, it’s been a good two days, with first the women winning it all and now the men moving a big step closer.

I don’t care that the weather up here leaves a lot to be desired. Sometimes the weather’s great. Anyway, we’re a tough bunch, and If we didn’t have bad weather, we’d have a lot less to talk about at parties.

Canada’s an exceptionally wonderful country and anyone who hasn’t been here needs to smarten up.

But back to the game.

Many said leading up to today that it could be a high scoring affair. It wasn’t.

Many said throughout the tournament, and long before, that Carey Price in nets would be a mistake. It was no mistake.

Price has been solid as a rock. He’s come through. And his calm demeanor has probably helped not only himself but his teammates too.

The pressure of winning in the Olympics is intense, but Price is used to it. He plays for the Montreal Canadiens.

Just a great showing by the Habs goaltender in Sochi, and maybe the critics will take a few days off now.

Jamie Benn scored Canada’s lone goal, a nice redirection of a Jay Bouwmeester pass, and that was it. The lone goal and the winner. It was all that was needed with Price holding the fort.

Benn’s been good.  And I thought Crosby and Kunitz had their best showing of the tournament and swarmed the American end often. Kunitz especially had about a half dozen good chances.

Now it’s Sweden at 7 am ET on Sunday for all the marbles. One more big game needed. One more game where everyone has to play like it’s game seven of the Stanley Cup finals, which is bigger than you think, Rene Fasel.

Proud of the two Canadian teams, proud of my country. But I can’t get carried away. I’ll have nothing to write on Sunday.

“Did you like the game, Elmer?”
“Sure did, Red. Did somebody say the weather’s good in Canada?”

Press box




Leo The Really Good

The little boy you see in these two videos scoring all these goals is Leo, the son of a co-worker of mine.

Every time I ask how Leo did in any of his games, it’s always that he scored seven or ten etc.

Leo only just recently turned 5, and in the first video, you see him get twelve points in a game, and in the second, he notches his 100th goal of the season. He reached 103 that game.

This kid is going to be the new Gretzky or Lafleur or  Crosby.

Keep the video and check it out again in about fifteen years, when Leo Brodeur is in the NHL

Okay, Who’s The Bastard?

Whoever it was who didn’t eat his vegetables and then probably got drunk one night and walked home without his pants on and ended up getting a cold and flu which immediately spread throughout Montreal and hit the Habs’ David Desharnais and Raphael Diaz and probably other players too and then made its way to me and knocked me flat on my back and on a diet of tomato soup and ginger ale and now that I’m feeling somewhat better has my kind and loving wife shivering and coughing and wrapped in blankets as her nose runs, should feel very ashamed of himself and it’s just too bad he doesn’t live in Pittsburgh where the Canadiens play the Pens who have eleven more points than the Habs and where Crosby and Malkin and the rest are probably perfectly healthy but it might not matter anyway because as Marjo points out, if the boys continue their win, lose, win, lose, then they’ll win in Pittsburgh regardless of the fact the germ-spreading bastard doesn’t live there.


Ready For Tonight

All set to go with no lingering beer effects, the TV will be nicely warmed-up, and I’m ready to say all kinds of nice things about the Canadiens after they wallop the Florida Panthers tonight at the Bell Centre.

It might prove tough for the gang though, considering they flew back from New York in a snowstorm in the wee hours of Sunday, with the Panthers not having played in a few days and winning their last two games in shootouts against good teams – the Caps on Friday and Wings last Tuesday.

With the Canadiens, all we’re asking for is a win and more scoring from different guys. Two goals in three games isn’t exactly fire-wagon hockey.

But they’ll turn it around because that’s what they do.

The question on everyone’s lips – Will Scott Gomez be in the Florida lineup? It’s a concern. The sniper, who has scored one goal this year and was on track for possibly a two-goal season, hasn’t dressed since Nov. 30 when he was a minus-2.

Fans pay big money for tickets and when Pittsburgh comes to town, they want to see Sidney Crosby. Same with Washington and Ovechkin.

Same with Florida and Gomez.