Carey Price was smooth, steady, confident, and solid as a rock. He handled the puck with poise, even sending it tape-to-tape a hundred feet up the ice a few times.
And he did all this while the rest of his team slept against a young and speedy Chicago Blackhawks squad.
At least, they slept through most of two periods, falling behind 2-0, with the first Hawks goal a deflection off Marc-Andre Bergeron’s skate, and the second, a screen shot while Hal Gill sat in the sin bin for hooking.
Which brings me to Hal Gill. He took a couple of silly penalties and most times is a liability with the puck. He’s out of position often (two of Sidney Crosby’s goals on Wednesday were because Gill was where he shouldn’t be), and if he doesn’t pick it up a notch or two, he going to play himself right up to the press box. It’s bad enough when he touches the puck. And it’s just as bad when he doesn’t.
But this is Hallowe’en, a time for joy, forgiveness, and harmony. Oh wait, that’s Christmas.
Canadiens surprisingly enough tied it at two late in the second with goals by Mike Cammalleri and Travis Moen. This must have been because the team’s two-hour flight jetlag must have worn off a bit. Montreal gets jetlag often. Every time they go on the road they play like they’re dehydrated and exhausted as if they’ve just arrived from the Philippines after enjoying some of Manila’s finest brothels.
And in the end, they lost 3-2. It wasn’t a great outing by most, to say the least. There were bursts here and there, and again, guys like Latendresse and Lapierre did the opposite of setting the world on fire. You’d think some players would get tired of just going through the motions on most nights. It doesn’t look like it, though.
But Carey Price was just fine and that’s what we need. It was just his bad luck that his team in front of him sucked.
Matt D’Agostini got crunched in the head by an Andrew Ladd elbow and was never to be seen again. Ladd got the boot.
Sergei Kostitysn has two goals and three assists in seven games with the Hamilton Bulldogs. Will he be back up at any time soon? Maybe to replace a concussed D’Agostini.
I’m not overly surprised at seeing Latendresse go backwards in his development. I remember when he was on Team Canada in the World Juniors and he was either benched or saw limited duty because of lacklustre and uninspired play. It was an early sign that this guy is going to be a project. But how long do we have to wait before the project gets cancelled?
Lapierre seems to be trying. But instead of chipping in on the points board, he’s been just a plumber. We’d hoped for more than that.
Habs greet Toronto Saturday night. Can they win this? Can they lose this? Will it be embarrassing? Stay tuned.