Higgins Never Became What We Thought He’d Become

higFormer Hab Chris Higgins returns to Montreal in a Rangers uniform tonight, and hopefully he’ll play just the way he did last season – lousy.

This is a guy who has always had potential, who scored more than twenty goals three times as a Montreal Canadien, but should have scored more. Too many times we endured his long, painful slumps which he always found himself in. In other words, as a Hab, in general he was a big honkin’ disappointment who never became the player and point-getter everyone thought he’d become.

The Rangers are hot, with seven wins and three losses, and are second behind Pittsburgh in the east. But Higgins isn’t hot. He’s sitting at no goals and two assists so far. Consistency has never been one of Higgins’ stronger suits, maybe because of hangovers.

He’s got a decent shot, though, if that’s any consolation.

And of course there’s the Manhattan fashion designer, Sean Avery, who has two goals and three assists so far. It appears Avery has a real nice little relationship growing between him and coach John Tortorella, who blasted Avery continuously when Torts was a TSN analyst, even going so far as saying he’d never want this guy on his team. But it seems to be working out. Avery is now being a fine human being, a hard- working forward, and it makes you wonder – is he in line for some sort of Humanitarian award?

And is there a possiblity Avery can help get Torts into the fashion-designing world?

The real problem for Montreal though, isn’t Higgins or Avery. It’s probably goalie Henrik Lundqvist, a premier netminder who so far has allowed 20 goals in nine games, which isn’t exactly stellar netminding, but not bad.  Carey Price, by comparison, has seen 20 goals get by him in only six games, including that seven-goal Vancouver debacle that I seem to be bringing up quite often. I think that night caused me permanent brain damage.

And the question now is, will Halak play or Price? In my mind it should be Halak, as he’s been in nets for the last two wins. He’s on a roll. But what do I know. I’m just a bum who can’t even get a job as stick boy or skate around with a flag before the game.

14 thoughts on “Higgins Never Became What We Thought He’d Become”

  1. Denis, if Avery can turn around maybe there’s hope for SK.

    Jacques Martin would be doing himself and everyone a favour if he sticks with Halak. If he goes with Price and they lose there will be howls of protest. Of course, if Price gets a shutout he’ll look like a genius. Still, the risk/benefit ratio leans towards placing Halak in nets.

  2. I think it’s pretty well gotta be Halak. I’d really start to question Martin’s coaching if Price plays tonight.

  3. I think Price should play, ’cause, although Halak’s on a hot streak right now, Carey’s gonna stride on that and play with everything he’s got. He’s gonna give the effort we haven’t seen since his rookie season.

  4. Price should have started against the Islanders. A young tired team that played on the road the night before. Odds were they weren’t going to put up much of a fight. That would have been a great game for Price to get his confidence back. Putting him in against a tough Rangers team, if he loses, every one will be howling, like you said. But seriously, Halak has beaten the Thrashers and the Islanders. Not exactly the upper echelon of teams.

    As for Higgins, I never liked him. I thought he was always overrated, and we held on to him for so long that his value diminished. He’s streaky, and if he’s not scoring, he’s not doing much else. He was this generation’s Brian Savage.

  5. Good morning, Tom. Higgins seemed like he had an attitude. And then there were the party rumours. Whatever, he was a disappointment, even when he was scoring 25 goals or so. I always got the impression he’s full of himself.

  6. Dennis, (this time with two n’s – sorry for the mispell above)

    Players are like stocks. Their value goes up or down based on performance. The trouble is a lot of teams wind up buying high and selling low which is no way to build up a winning portfolio. How often has a team heavily invested in a marquis player only to get stuck with a dud nobody would pay a bag of pucks for. Happily, the reverse is also true. That is why its important to have the best hockey minds in an organization who avoid putting all their eggs in one basket. Is the CH such an organization? Many have lost faith recently, but I still say stay tuned…

  7. Dennis, my take on these two faced hockey players is that somewhere in a previous life they were some really good waiters—you know “Money talks- Bullshit walks”……feel like putting a friendly bet on tonight’s Canuck game???? Back to 2-faced hockey….I’m pretty sure Sean A. lived with his mom while he was waiting tables. He must have some fans SOMEWHERE.

  8. Has to be Halak. You ride the hot guy when you need to string some wins together and shouldn’t be concerned with the other guy’s ego. If Price is the pro we think or hope he is, he’ll get through sitting out a few games.

    Regarding Avery, be patient. He will somehow manage to launch himself to a far off planet. My guess is there will be issues before the Olympic break.

  9. That’s right, DD, Avery can only be a saint for so long. But so far he’s been a good little boy who brings his teacher an apple. Yecch.

  10. Hi Jan. Bet on what? You mean the Canucks are still in the league? (Sorry. Cheap shot.) Canucks and Habs have similar records. It’s just that nightmare that happened recently that I can’t let go.

  11. Danno, I really trust Bob Gainey. I don’t know why, maybe because he’s always beena voice of reason over the years, even as a player. He has to be careful about a trade too, Giving up a lot of good players who might break out eventually, for someone who turns out to be a dud, would be terrible. I don’t recall how Vancouver ended up with Mark Messier, but it was a complete flop. Messier came in as the saviour and all he did was disrupt things and being cozy with management. It’s a fine line. But like I said, I trust Gainey. (although there’s lots who don’t).

  12. I couldn’t agree with you more. In Gainey we trust. For now anyways…

    Speaking of former Habs and their (mis) fortunes consider this:

    What does Mike Komisarek and Timmins, Ontario have in common???? They are both Minus 25 come christmas.

    Coming soon the 30-volume encyclopedia of Leaf jokes.

    Jacques Demers is saying Halak (if he stays hot) should remain in nets tonight and even Tuesday and only then start Price against Pittsburgh.

  13. I’m still a little nervous when I see the puck around Price. When you see the same situations with Brodeur and all the veteran all-star goalies, you know the puck’s not going in. But I’m not there yet with Price. Frankly, I think he was rushed and they should have brought him in slowly. This is one thing I’m not sure Gainey did correctly.

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