Tag Archives: 2014 NHL playoffs

How You Win A Trophy

The New York Rangers win game 4 and sweep aside many people’s prediction of a Kings’ sweep. It should finish in game 5, however.

The following true story has nothing to do with the Kings and Rangers.

A bunch of guys, including a friend of mine, were on a bus trip to see an NFL game in Buffalo, maybe last year, and after some serious drinking, a little trophy was offered to the person who could come up with the most outrageous thing.

A 40+ year old firefighter on the bus won the trinket after he licked the bus’s toilet floor and then all the way up the aisle to the front.

Mid-June Hockey

I don’t care what you think, hockey should be over before the heat kicks in. Although there’s probably people who disagree.

However, if you disagree and your favourite team isn’t the Habs, your team sucks.

It’s a fine mantra if you don’t mind me saying so. “If your favourite team isn’t the Habs, it sucks”. A song title, a t-shirt slogan, a tattoo, something to come up with in a drunken argument.

Anyway.

It’s nearing the middle of June. It’s nice and warm out. We should be doing summer things like sitting in dark, air conditioned bars drinking pints.

Of course if the Habs were still going I wouldn’t be complaining about this.

It used to be over in mid-April, back when there were less teams and people decided hockey was strictly a winter sport. But that isn’t the case anymore. Too many teams, so much money for owners to light cigars with.

If the playoffs end in mid-April it means it would have to start sometime in February, and we’d miss part of the annual Leafs collapse that takes place then.

That would suck if we couldn’t see that.

Below is an excerpt from my mother’s 1942 diary when she was 17, typed out by my sister. As you can see, the Cup was won on April 18th. Disregard the team.

mom

 

Kings And Rangers Next

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention at least something regarding the great Kings-Hawks series that just wrapped up with a game 7 overtime win for L.A.

Great series. One of the best ever. Exciting and dramatic. Everything good about the sport.

I didn’t see much. It’s just what I heard.

Should I apologize for not being a good hockey fan? For not watching a lot of this great series that just wrapped up? For not paying as much attention after the Habs bowed out?

Sorry.

But enough about that.

Danny Gallivan speaks and Jean Beliveau lights the lamp in game seven of the 1965 Cup Finals.

The Canadiens would hoist the hardware after winning this game 4-0, and Mr. Beliveau would win the league’s first-ever Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP.

The Curtain Closes

And just like that, it comes to a crashing halt.

Blanked 1-0 in game six at Madison Square Garden and the Canadiens’ season closes way too soon. We wanted more but I guess fans of every team except the Cup winner want more and don’t get it.

It was a game where the Habs had a blanket thrown over them almost from start to finish, a game they never found themselves truly in, a game where passes were off, they were checked into the ground, and the flow never flowed.

The Rangers tightened things up so much, Montreal, fighting for their lives, could only muster five shots in the first, eight in the second, and just five in the third when they should’ve been pulling out all the stops.

The attack was non-existent. So was pressure on Henrik Lundqvist. And the Rangers move on to the Stanley Cup Final and the Canadiens say their goodbyes in the next few days and spread out to different corners of the planet.

It’s a tad shocking as I pound the keyboard with two fingers. We had so many hopes and dreams that ended before they were supposed to. It sucks when the hopes and dreams don’t pan out.

This also isn’t  a night to say this guy didn’t do this or that guy didn’t do that. It just wouldn’t feel right.

It’s a night, for me at least, to look back and appreciate the terrific season the Montreal Canadiens gave us. One of only four teams left standing. How great was that?

Carey Price was on the sidelines, Dustin Tokarski stepped in, and the goaltending never lost a beat. But against the Rangers in this game especially, the team in front of Tokarski looked to have run out of gas while the Rangers still had a full tank.

In the next six months there will be some tweaking, some guys gone, a couple of young defenceman will find themselves with regular jobs, our kids like Alex Galchenyuk and Michael Bournival will have another valuable season under their belts, and PK Subban will get signed and continue on his road to the league’s best d-man.

We can get into changes and non-changes in the next while. It’ll be interesting to see what Marc Bergevin decides to do. I just hope Dale Weise, who had only signed a one-year contract, is in the plans.

We missed Weise’s character in this game six because of John Moore. Who is John Moore again?

This run has made our guys better. The experience is invaluable. Next year they’ll be one of the elite teams, one that when playoff time rolls around, they’ll be be a force and that parade will be much more of a possibility.

I’m truly proud of them. They gave us a great year, but they just aren’t quite there yet. Next year they will be because it’s a large and strong nucleus that make up our Montreal Canadiens, and the near future looks extremely bright.

One final note before it’s lights off. As I mention every year when the Habs season draws to a close, I don’t go away. This blog carries on throughout the summer so please continue to stop by.

Tomorrow’s another day. It’s also my weekly beer day at the local pub!

 

 

John Moore – Who Is He Again?

Ain’t it strange how things go. Some guy named John Moore gets two games for giving Dale Weise what looks to be a concussion, and very soon Moore will have to have his brain analyzed by doctors as they study why some people are more stupid than others.

The Rangers become  short a defenceman going into a crucial game 6. Some of their toughness, for lack of a better word, is now on the sidelines. The Canadiens, seeing their fallen comrade Weise take an illegal blow in the heat of the action, dig down and find the wherewithal in hurting the Rangers where it hurts the most.

Not the gonads. The series.

Full disclosure here. I’d never heard of John Moore until the series began. Am I bad?

But here’s some of his numbers:

2 games with the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2010-11.

67 games with the Jackets in 2011-12

17 games with the Jackets in 2012-13 and13 games with the Rangers in the same year.

74 games this season with the Rangers.

173 NHL games and I had never heard of him. I gotta start paying more attention. But I see in looking at his scoring  and penalty numbers during his time in the league, he’s a bum with 7 goals, 22 assists, and 40 PIM in those 173 games.

And in this postseason he’s also a bum, with 1 assist and 16 penalty minutes in 17 games.

So what if they lose this guy? He’s a non-entity. A bum. Why couldn’t it be Ryan McDonagh. This guy Moore? He’s nothing. He’s like an extra in the Ten Commandants.

Do I think two games is enough? Sure, why not?

It takes it to the end of the series. Any more than that wouldn’t affect me if the Habs aren’t involved. If it had occurred earlier in the series, like the start, I’d say give him seven games. If the series was midway through, give him four games.

But now going into game six, give him two, he’s gone, and we don’t have to figure out who he is and why he isn’t selling vacuum cleaners door to door.

And hopefully Dale Weise  is okay and ready to go when the boys tackle the Western Conference champs. Because when Dale is going, the team seems to be going. A character player deluxe.

 

Okay Habs

No need for a pep talk, Habs. You know what’s on the line. If we have to remind you, you might as pack up and join the Korean League or something.

If you win tonight you’ll have the Blueshirts edgy going back to Broadway, and if you win that one, then game seven back home means the Rangers will be basket cases on the verge of chug-a-lugging 4 Aces sherry rotgut to ease their troubled minds and you’ll be bursting at the seams with vim and vigour.

Plus, it you lose tonight we’ll be upset. And you don’t want to poke the skunk.

baby skunk

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need my pre-game nap.

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Stuff Before The Game

I think it’s worth mentioning that today the girlwatching during my walk around the little lake in the park was exceptional. Lovely creatures strolling about everywhere.

Maybe more than normal because word might have spread like wildfire that I was there in my shorts.

When God made women he was really at the top of his game. He gave 110%. There was no letting up. He took it one shapely curve at a time. A huge home run. And so on.

A lot of people wearing Habs shirts and hats were also enjoying the park. A little fresh air and nature before the big game is good.

*********************

I was in a St. Hubert bar recently and it was just me and a women about my age sitting a few stools down. Neither of us were talking, but I had my iPad and because I had come across these neat pictures of different dogs with beautiful and unusual coats, I decided to show them to her, just to be friendly.

It took about five minutes to go through these different dog pictures, with me pointing out ones I really liked. Great pictures. Some really funny ones.

At the end of it, she told me she hated dogs.

***********************

Walking around the lake, I came to the water fountain which happened to have a man and his dog standing nearby. I got within a few feet, preparing to press the button and have a drink, and the guy suddenly picked up the dog dish and started filling it with water.

He was in no hurry either, and filled it to overflowing while I waited. He hadn’t bothered when I was further away, only when I was two feet away.

What’s up with that?

 

 

 

When I Grow Up

009

When I grow up I’m going to be a high school dropout, do a lot of nasty drugs, turn my parents into nervous wrecks, drink too much, move all over the place, work a lot of different jobs, get married a couple of times, and wonder why my kids never call me.

I’m going to meet Toe Blake and the Rocket, see the Beatles at Maple Leaf Gardens, end up working to retirement on the West Coast, and instead of retiring, move to Montreal to do a job I’d really wanted to try for years.

And in the same year I move to Montreal, my Canadiens battle in the third round of the Stanley Cups playoffs against the Rangers after taking out the Lightning and Bruins.

But until then, I think I’ll just play a little hockey.

Two For Prust

Brandon Prust has been suspended for two games for what the big shots have determined as a late hit that apparently broke Derek Stepan’s jaw.

Must have been quite a break. Stepan, in his post game whining, spoke like his jaw was completely normal.

Of course I’m no doctor. But I just always thought that when your jaw is broken, it’s noticeable in your speech.