Habs Win By A Whisker

Montreal edged the New Jersey Devils 2-1 in this early 10 a.m PST morning matinee, and try as they may, they didn’t blow it.

But could they have made it any harder on themselves?

As so frequently happens with the Canadiens, they found themselves with the lead, 2-0 in fact, and as also happens, they found themselves in dire straights late in the game. It became almost so predictable it was like a well-worn joke.

The Devils narrowed the gap to 2-1 in the third period, as most teams who have played the Habs have done recently, and once again, a late-game penalty was called, this time a slashing call to Raphael Diaz with just 1:55 left. And to make matters worse, Josh Gorges smothered the puck in the crease with his hand and a penalty shot was rewarded to the Devils.

It really is quite comical when you think about it. Or maybe not if you think too much about it.

Zach Parise failed to score on the penalty shot but it didn’t mean the game was decided. The Devils pulled their goalie and the final few moments, with Montreal hanging on for dear life, were played six men to four. But the Canadiens managed to hold on, and they owe Carey Price a steak dinner. In fact, I think they owe Price about twelve steak dinners.

Actually, the Montreal Canadiens owe US a steak dinner for putting us through this ridiculous season.

Tomas Kaberle, in his debut, contributed two assists, one on a much-needed power play marker, and he moved the puck around with poise and intelligence. But by about midway through the game, he was rarely noticed. So my grading of the guy is this – the jury remains out for awhile yet.

I guess the main thing is, they won the game. It wasn’t pretty, they came close to shooting themselves square in the foot, and once again, they have to stop taking these late-game penalties that drive us all to drink or serious drugs.

Random Notes:

Shots on goal – NJ 29, Habs 24.

CBC Three Stars – 1-Price, 2-Kaberle, 3-Brodeur

Max Pacioretty was the power play goal scorer, and Erik Cole also whacked one home.

There were empty seats throughout the Prudential Arena in Newark. Maybe Jersey Shore was on TV.

Next game – Tuesday when the Islanders pay a visit to the Bell. We lost to these buggers 4-3 three weeks ago.

Russian lesson for the day – The Pronunciation of Kovalchuk isn’t Kovalchuk, it’s supposed to sound like Kovalchooke. My wife said so.

9 thoughts on “Habs Win By A Whisker”

  1. Hey Dennis,I watched the game and the Habs didnt deserve the win,if it wasn’t for Carey Price they never would have pulled that one off.There were alot of blocked shots as well by the Habs defence .I thought it was a boring game actually,a typical devil’s game ,played between the blue lines.Their style of play has always been like that,thanks Jaques Lemaire,you make hockey really shitty,much like Gary Bettman.

  2. Yes Kaberle got an assist on each goal, but his defensive play still scares me. On the first Montreal power-play he was weak holding the puck at the point. He was weak skating back against the fore-checker, giving up a good short-handed scoring chance. And eventually this led to the Subban penalty. Later he was very sloppy recovering a Devil clearing and was beaten to the puck giving up another good scoring opportunity. Finally while New Jersey was scoring their goal, he was completely lost, he didn’t have a clue where the puck or the opposing players were.

    Thanks for the instructions on the proper pronunciation of Kovalchuk, but I don’t think I’ll ever need to use it. He doesn’t do anything worth mentioning.

  3. Chris, it seems like Kaberle might help on the power play, but I don’t think we can expect much more. Four million is too much for this.

  4. I would givv him time. There’s a reason the leaf fans loved him. Anyone would need time to adjust to new teammates. I think some of our guys were running around and theyve been with the team all year. He was chosen as second star in his first game. Not bad. We knew he wasnt much defensively before he came here. I hope he gets 50 points and is only weak on 20 or so. He didlook pretty darn good taking that puck out of the zone on his first point. None of our current d-men can do that, not even Subban. I think only markov can carry like that.

  5. but then again I do remember himin the defensive end and he looks pretty darn scarey and lost. He was real soft on the devil goal. Hes lucky he got two assists.Will be interesting with him here. I think the Habs fans will give him super-star energy.

  6. The highlight of the game for me was easily Price’s save on Parise. Thank you Carey.

    Kind of a boring game. It’s a really dead arena. I couldn’t believe how many empty seats there were. It’d be so easy to score tickets there and good ones! You probably can actually get them for the actual ticket price as well.

  7. Kaberle definitely started off well, you say he looked invisible the second half of the game, I say it’s because he was just extremely driven and determined.

    But my goodness, the closing minute of the game was exciting!
    Imagine the commotion if the game was at the Bell Centre. Carey was beyond pumped when he made the save.

    Great competitive game that was very entertaining, but it was just too close for comfort.

  8. Seems like it’s always too close for comfort, Phil. I’m tired of it. I want a lop-sided win for a change.

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