Habs Blank Blueshirts At Bell

It was one of those get-your-hands-dirty working days, deep in the heart of a long, long season.

A Monday or Tuesday morning at the factory as opposed to a Saturday night pub crawl.

It was a nondescript and very satisfying 2-0 win for the Canadiens over the visiting New York Rangers, which also translates into 9 wins in 13 games for a team that struggles with scoring and has several major injuries.

They’re getting it done somehow, and in the process are making us very happy. Unless you hate the Habs of course.

How do the Habs keep doing it? By putting on their workboots and plaid shirts, punching the clock, and buckling down to no-frills business.

Sure the Rangers had edges thereabouts, outshooting the home team 35-29, and coming close a little too often. But Carey Price was solid as a rock, the team checked hard and stayed within themselves, and when the siren sounded it became another two big points and keeps the team rolling along like a semi with a full tank of diesel.

Random Notes:

I’m giving my new grandson the name “Alexandre Picard Lewis,” although his parents don’t know it yet. It was Picard’s shot that banked off the backboards when Gomez opened the scoring, and it was Picard who had four big blocked shots including one he stopped with a minute and half to go that easily could have been the Rangers tying goal.

Tomas Plekanec iced it with an empty-netter.

Habs got it done without James Wisniewski who is fighting the flu. Speaking of Wisniewski, TSN was flashing news across the bottom of the screen the other day and spelled it “Wiznewski.” I shouldn’t really talk but most of my errors aren’t spelling errors, they come from hitting the wrong keys because of my lousy two-fingered typing.

Tomorrow at 3 pm eastern, the New Jersey Devils pay a visit to the Bell. How nice would it be to grab another two points? A four-point weekend. Yes sirree.

31 thoughts on “Habs Blank Blueshirts At Bell”

  1. Sunday, Monday, Happy Days,
    Tuesday, Wednesday, Happy Days,
    Thursday, Friday, Happy Days,
    Saturday, what a day,
    Rockin all week with you.

    Ehhhhh! Sit on it Fonzie! (Tortorella)

    Beating the Devils would be delightful Dennis. But the big match is coming Wednesday when we play the Bruins in Boston. After that we may find ourselves in first place in the division and third place in the conference.

    Now we find ourselves only one point behind Washington and we have 30 wins 18 losses and 5 O/T losses for 65 points. With 29 games to go, that’s pretty damn good.

    After the game Jacques Martin was answering questions and he looked like a crocodile holding back a smile. He knew that today’s game was one he could point to as how his system is the key to the team’s success.

    It can be boring and frustrating at times. But it’s delivering results.

  2. Danno,you’re right, Martin’s system is working. He’s getting the most out of a team that on paper doesn’t resemble a threat at all. This season is getting more and more interesting. They mentioned before the game something that we’ve been saying all along. PK has picked up his game since Gorges went down. It’s given PK a new sense of responsibility and belonging. But we already knew this.

  3. I, somehow, have evolved to four fingers, but I confess to being all over the place.

    As much as I have wanted to shake JM at times, both the kids and the team are doing quite well, thank you. He’s doing a lot right as it turns out.

  4. AC, I wonder if Jacques Martin can slowly become toast of the town. Imagine.
    And four fingers? That’s almost cheating.

  5. Wow, two fingers?! Dennis, I sincerely applaud your hard work.

    That win was good. Gomez did what we pay him to do. You could probably argue that we had the home rink advantage on that goal since Gomez probably is quite familiar with how the bounces go. But we’ll take it. And Price needs to be like this in the playoffs. I hope I’m not jinxing anything.

    Everyone getting excited about the Bruins fighting the Stars can also forget about it since the Habs proved that they can stand their ground in this game. Though I really did not like that hit on Spacek. We don’t need more injuries!

    By the way, did you hear about Malkin’s injuries? The Buffalo Sabres are becoming the new Philadelphia Flyers. We did lose MC13 to them after all. And though the Pens are our rivals, I hate to see someone get two big injuries like that, especially after seeing Markov out with the same stuff. 🙁

  6. Habby, imagine if we lost Spacek. Not good. And as much as I’m trying to be mature about Malkin going down, he could be an obstacle on our way to the Stanley Cup so it’s kind of good we don’t have to be concerned with him. Is that maturity?

  7. Spacek’s goals are random but really helpful. Haha, don’t worry about maturity. It’s bittersweet. You feel for the team, but you know it’ll help us. Kinda like cheering against Crosby last year in the 2nd round. He’s our golden guy, but if you’re not with us, you’re against us.

    Though I still harbor dreams that Crosby will one day suit up for us. I mean, to repay the team for drafting his dad. To make that boyhood dream come true. If you’ve ever seen his baby bottle, it’s a Habs bottle. This guy is more of a Canadiens fan than many of us. Now, the question is can we make him an offer he can’t refuse? I hope he doesn’t follow in Mario’s footsteps with Pittsburgh. He can do that with the Habs. Besides, I think the distance between Montreal and Cole Harbour is much less than Pittsburgh and Cole Harbour.

    Side note: Cole Harbour = CH Coincidence? 😀

    (Sorry about the excessive Crosby chat.)

  8. Habby, Crosby would look excellent in a Habs uniform. But somehow I don’t think Pitts will ever let him go, for the next 50 years maybe.

  9. Don’t hold your breath on Crosby. He is too good to let go. He, more than anyone would look the best. I think Max Pac is a huge huge part of our future, as much as Subban. I don’t have a lot of complaints about today’s game. It sure was blue collar. Hoping Picard was going to knock Avery’s head off, was disappointed. Eller ticed me off early with his play but he did come on later in the game. My jury still out as to whether Eller deserves to play. He has been too quiet. AK46 played better tonight. What a shot he has and loved the hit he gave to NYR #38. A little dirty but it was payback for the Spacek hit I thought. We are one of the hottest teams in the league. How are they doing it without Markov and Georges? Incredible development for Subban, Weber and Picard. I think we are set for next year with Hammer leaving (I hope). I hope Gill re-signs. And I have been a big JM critic but am taking hat off to him tonight.

  10. And no sympathy to the Pens for Malkin. Looks like he may be gone for even the playoffs. One less obstacle for us. Cammellerri may be back this weekend?

  11. You packed a lot of good stuff in here, Mayo. Yeah, I was hoping Picard would get some real good shots into Avery’s mug. Let the blood flow. And about Eller, I find myself being very patient with him and I’m not exactly sure why. Maybe it’s because he’s still adapting. Maybe it’s because he looks like he has promise for the future. But really, we’re still waiting for more points from him and the team of course would be even better if he could contribute that way more. How are they doing it? Instead of the panels spewing, I’d like to hear what opposing players think of the Habs. Surely the respect must be growing now. They certainly deserve it. And yes, I wouldn’t mind seeing Gill stay. He’s important in his own way.

  12. Habby, I’m even pretty darn fast for using two fingers. But I usually have to go back and fix things. (Like I just did with this comment).

  13. Dennis, you said you’d like to hear what other teams are saying about us instead of the expert panels. So ask and you shall receive…

    Here’s the post-game interview of NYR coach John Tortorella. In it he heaps praise on Carey Price and the Habs and even calls them a good team…

    http://video.rangers.nhl.com/videocenter/console?catid=765&id=96285

    That’s not your typical Tortorella press conference. I believe the respect is finally growing.

    By the way Dennis, have you tried practicing using a typing tutor? It worked for me.

    Nobody complained about the refs because we won anyhow. But they were bloody awful.

  14. Dennis,

    I’m of two minds when it comes to the Pens injuries. Yes, it’s helpful for us going head to head with them. The downside is IMO the Pens are the only team in the East that can take out the Flyers in the playoffs. Depending on where we end up in the standings come playoff time, it would be nice if the Pens took care of the Flyers then we can take care of them. In a perfect world, that’s how I see it.

  15. This is totally unscientific, but I believe the Flyers have peaked too soon and are acting way too cocky. They are due for a slump and what better time for them to have one than the playoffs. They aren’t as invincible as everyone is making them out to be. Mostly because in the playoffs it all boils down to goaltending. We certainly have that covered with Price in nets. Not so sure the Flyers do however with Bobrovski.
    For sure they are a good, tough team. But I wouldn’t count my chickens before they’ve hatched if I were them.
    Remember the Caps and Pens last year?
    Anything can happen. And I like our chances even with Markov and Gorges out.

  16. Good poiint Moey on the Pens/Fleyrs. Any help there would be appreciated. I think we are better and bigger than last year. More confidence, better goaltending, younger D. We give up experience but speed and talent have to be figured in. The Flyers are better too. Let’s not forget the trade deadline coming up and I am sure the Habs wioll do something. The only expendable one up front is AK47; Hamrlik is expendable and will free up big money so we can re-sign Josh, the Wiz, Weber and Picard. Who knows, we may even be able to trade Gomez? Maybe we trade for Loungo and he could be our highpriced backup to Price? Scary tthought.

  17. Moey raises an interesting strategic point about the Malkin injury.

    Sure it would be nice if someone takes care of the Flyers for us. But I still believe we can fight our own battles and here’s why:

    First let’s look at how we stack up against the Flyers…

    http://canadiens.nhl.com/club/teamvsteamdetails.htm?season=20102011&team=PHI

    We played them four times and the Flyers have beaten us three times.

    I know that sounds bad, but it could easily be a 2-2 record because the November 22nd game was one that we let get away from us after we had a 2-0 lead. We could have easily won that one if we played a full 60 minutes.

    I almost would prefer to see us play the Flyers in the first round when we have more energy and stamina instead of in the later rounds when we are battle-weary. Get it over with early because in all probability it will be whoever beats the Flyers that will advance from the Eastern Conference playoffs to the cup finals.

    By no means am I underestimating the Flyers. It won’t be an easy task to do to them what we did to the Caps and Pens last year. But again I feel we are a team that keeps on surprising the experts and skeptics. And I see no sign of that changing.

    So I guess what I’m trying to say is I don’t mind being considered the Underdogs again by these so-called experts. As for the Flyers or anyone else — Bring ’em on!

  18. Mayo & Danno,

    I’m usually glass half full but not when it comes to the Flyers. Playing them in the first round might increase our chances but only if we have home ice advantage. Philly is a very tough building to play in. The chances of us finishing ahead of them are slim to none. But these Habs can & have surprised. We need another D man for sure, hopefully Gauthier gets the dialing finger out before the end of the month.

  19. Oh and Danno,

    We owned them during the regular season in 2008 and we still went out in the second against them, it was a different team but we’re still lacking that power forward. Maybe Max can fill that. Also, come to think of it Price wasn’t great in that playoff series, he’s better now. Regular season stats don’t mean much, the Flyers got in by a shootout point last year and ended up being a game away from a Stanley Cup. Who knows, we just have to keep the faith.

  20. I agree Danno, we can hold our own. We are starting to come on. Our big contracts are finally coming around. Once Cammy gets back our PP will come alive again. I understand our schedule is easier than most teams.

    Ville Leino looks to be available and Flyers may try to move him (only $800k this year) as he will be expensive next year. He’s a big body and effective. He hurt us a few times and would welcome him aboard and has 12 more points than Gomes.

    I hope the habs look at Rob Niedermayer, C. He is big cheap and experienced and 36. Be a good rental.

  21. Thanks, Danno. Nice to hear him say they’re a good team. I like Tortorella’s character. He’s not like the rest. But I would have loved to hear him say they’re a great team. That’s still to come. And about practicing on the keyboard. I think if I don’t improve now, I’m never going to. I actually took typing in grade ten with a full-buxomed teacher who liked to teach the guys from behind with her arms over our shoulders. I learned at that time where things are and how to hold the hands and all that, but when I try it now without looking, it comes out like this, “Thr adiniens win the gqme laqy bjgbtg.|

  22. Moey, that’s a good point. If only we were a little bigger, the Flyers wouldn’t be such a problem for us. I don’t think their goaltending is going to last, Mike Richards is too busy crying, and it would be good to see Chris Pronger go down. I guess the bottom line is, if we’re going to go all the way, we’re going to have to fight like crazy to do it.

  23. I like our chances, too, Danno. And why not. We’re up there in points, PK has risen to the challenge, and we’re winning games. But there’s one thing – we need a bit more scoring. C’mon Pouliot and Kostitsyn and Cammy.

  24. One little thing, Mayo, about looking at who to keep and who to let go. Even though Auld played well the other night, I’d still like to see a better backup. And I sure hope they keep the Wiz. He’s too good to let slip away.

  25. Danno, the Flyers have some scoring – Briere, Giroux, Carter etc, and a big defence, but they still have holes. Their goaltending is suspect, and Mike Richards cries so much he can’t concentrate. We’ll take ’em out. We’ll take ’em all out.

  26. Dennis, anytime you sense the need, please feel free to give one of our under-performers some sh!t. It’s worked like a charm every time.

    It’s for the greater good.

    So fire away!

  27. Hey Dennis, have you noticed ever since the birth of Adam Gary Lewis the Habs have been hot, hot, hot and your site is seeing increased traffic.

    I think this year of the Rabbit thing really is good luck after all.

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