Habs Win Stanley (Park). Oh, What A Night!

Before I get into this, I just want to mention that it was Tom Cruise you may have seen on the sports news watching the game from a private box at the Vancouver game and not me.

Montreal 3, Canucks 2. Yes, it’s true. The first Habs win in Vancouver since 2000. Not that Vancouver has been better than the Habs every game since 2000, but they’ve managed to win anyway.

In 2000, players didn’t wear helmets and goalies didn’t wear masks. (yes they did, I’m just being silly after drinking four big pints in celebration of one of the most amazing nights I’ve experienced in as long as I can remember).

Of the 20,000 or so at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, I’m guessing 9,000 were Habs fans. In bars and restaurants and on streets throughout, Habs fans were everywhere. At the rink, cheers were as loud for the Habs as they were for the Canucks. They sang Ole, Ole. They wore new and vintage Habs sweaters. They chanted Go Habs Go and drowned out lesser Canucks chants.

It made my heart soar like all the birds that can really soar.

Surely the whole thing must piss off Canucks fans.

And the game?

We jumped out in the beginning, outshooting Vancouver at one point about 15 to 2 or so. But penalties, as they do, changed momentum and the Canucks, a fine-looking team for sure, especially those Sedins, climbed back in and took over the shot tally from the second period on. It was stressful, Habs fans were louder than loud, our seats were wonderful – just eight rows up from David Desharnais and Brian Gionta scoring only 30 feet in front of us, and it became one of the best evenings Luciena and I have spent in years except for…..never mind.

Tonight was magical. Mystical. Like a script written. In the pre-game warm-up, we went down to ice level at Montreal’s end and watched PK and Carey and the boys get ready and I looked over often at my wife and she, being a fine Habs fan at her first Habs game, had eyeballs as big as saucers and I knew at this point that I’m a good, solid husband.

Montreal played well in this game, as least I thought so considering the penalties that needed to be killed. The flow and rhythm was lost for a great part as the boys trooped to the sin bin, but it didn’t stop the noise and atmosphere from the crazy and delightful Habs fans who traveled from all corners of the province and beyond to see their team knock off the first-overall Canucks and make my day like it’s rarely made.

What a night. Beating the Canucks after losing in Edmonton and Calgary. Back on the winning track. Celebrating with thousands of Habs fans three thousand miles from Montreal. Wishing I could kick the fish mascot in the ass.

What a night. Thank you Habs, for the magic. And for just being you.

Random Notes:

Montreal goal scorers were David Desharnais on a beautiful breakaway, Brian Gionta, and Andrei Kostitsyn with the winner.

Shots on goal – 39-25 Canucks

Next up – Home to destroy the Leafs.

Stanley Park, in the title of this story, was named after Lord Stanley of Preston, the man who donated the Stanley Cup. Stanley Park opened in Vancouver in 1888.

21 thoughts on “Habs Win Stanley (Park). Oh, What A Night!”

  1. Dennis, I just got woke up to check the score and was expecting something like Vacouver 7, Montreal 1.

    Instead we beat the Cannucks for the second time this century.

    I’m so happy for you and Luciena.

  2. And in the middle of an ugly slump.

    Whodathunk it?

    I love this crazy bunch of beautiful bastards®

    Plan the parade!

  3. What an awesome blog, a trip, well planned and an outcome of a fairytale to boot… I’m happy for you and Luciana to have an evening such as this. I watched for you…the cameras decided on Tom instead ?? What’s up with that? just sayin’…
    Of course I kept waiting for a Canuck lead or at very least, to tie it up…but that was not in the stars last night. Your guys were good to watch, especially PK. I thought that Burrows may have been intimidated as he did not play well at all…
    Don’t forget that extra week of work after retirement…

  4. Hey Dennis, I’m glad you got to see a great game,you should be a good luck charm for the Habs ,free tickets and beer to every game would be a bonus eh.I wasnt allowed to leave work yesterday without a bet from this big Canuck fan,I took a fiver from him as well as instilling a little respect for the Habs I think he picked up some humilitty along the way.

  5. Dennis,

    You picked the right game.

    A great heads-up hockey performance. Of course their heads were up trying to spot the owner-to-be.

    The reason DD, Pouliot and White didn’t get much ice time is that JM gave them the seating plan and told them to work out where you were sitting. They opened it the wrong way up and he spent the first period smiling and adjusting his tie at someone up the other end.

    JM doesn’t suffer fools gladly and so it was splinter time.

    btw Does anyone have a breakdown on the face-off stats? Would DD have made a difference to those?

  6. Thanks for that. I was trying to see where all that face-off damage got done as I haven’t seen the game yet.

    Is there any thing animal or human with better hand to eye co-ordination than Kessler? Or did he have superglue on his stick?

  7. I just watched the game highlights Dennis. Great game. Sorry the Habs had to make it interesting by allowing the Canucks to narrow the margin to only one goal early in the third period. Another nail-biter of course, but overall it looks like the team came out to play.
    Lucky you for being there!

  8. DK, Glad you & your better half got to see the game & it must have seemed like a home game for you, our guy’s in their Reds!
    I just wonder if teams are begining to figure out if they pressure us in the last minutes of a period we’ll take a stupid penalty, we always seem to. Oh well two points & I’m happy for you & Luciena & all HAB fans!! Crush the Laffs Thursday night I could use another 20 bucks from a work mate.
    Cheers from the East!!!!

  9. Dennis, your team was showing their stuff just to impress you as owner-in-waiting. Congratualtions on a great trip and night out! Ole Ole!!

  10. Diane, it was too much fun. Is there such a thing as too much fun. It was just one of those times when everything was perfect. Doesn’t happen all the time. It was just so great to see the jersey live and up close. And they won!!

  11. Mike, it was way too many penalties. It changed everything. Montreal was looking fantastic, ansd as soon as the penalties began, Canucks took over. We can’t be giving good teams, any teams, a man advantage and letting back in it. When are they going to learn?

  12. Danno, I can’t rmemeber a game I was at that was so stressful. I guess it was because of all the factors – losing in Edmonton and Calgary, not having won in Vanouver since 2000, us being there etc. We were on the edge of our seats.

  13. Danno, are you kidding? They’re not using DKRFSB? This is a marketing error if there ever was one. Ridiculous.

  14. Blue Bayou, I read that Pouliot sat because of his ill-timed penalty, but I don’t understand why Desharnais only played 5 minutes total. This is a team that needs scoring and he’s one of the guys who can do this. But I don’t know. Maybe he deserved it.

  15. Derry, good for you. Any time a Habs fan can grag some money from a Canucks fan it’s a beautiful thing. PS – It snowed a little on our way up to Powell River.

  16. Jan, it really was a fairytale trip. Everything went perfectly, even the weather as we walked along Robson. It was just an excellent trip and I have to tell you, the Canucks look really good. The Sedin’s especially. You might be in for a lon ride this year in the playoffs. Canucks against Montreal in the final. How sweet would that be?

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