Tag Archives: Mike Komisarek

Millennium First-Rounders

I thought now is as good a time as any to bring back the terrific breakdown of first-round draft picks for all teams beginning in 2001 that Ron Schwartz put together last February. I posted it then and I think I’d like to do it again.

Ron Schwartz at Silver Oak Blog has put together a nice look into NHL first-round picks since 2001, showing charts and he breaks down every first-rounder from every team and where they’re playing now. He gives us the distribution of each position, shows a world map of where they’ve all come from, and it’s a nice job and deserves a look.

See what he says and scroll down to the visual work. Have a look at all the Habs picks in the new millennium, beginning with Mike Komisarek, who went 7th in 2001.  All in all, it’s a great way to lead up to Friday.

Habs Vi-Tone Leafs To Close it Off

The Canadiens ended the season in fine fashion, winning 4-1 over the Toronto Maple Komisareks, and I’m sad as I sit in a Travelodge motel in Langley, BC, after watching the game at the Murrayville Town Pub which included several pints and a plate of onion rings which has lined my stomach with a grease that may take until next season to dissolve.

I’m sad because of what could have been. Tonight again, Erik Cole and Max Pacioretty bulged the twine like they should and would, Tomas Plekanec scored on a breakaway during a 5 on 3 power play for the Komisareks, which he should and did, and PK Subban again skated miles like he did and does.

I feel proud of the team, even though they’re done. They deserved better. They didn’t ask for injuries, and they didn’t ask for Pierre Gauthier. And either did we. They’re done but they’re better than their record showed.

Excuse me but I have to say this…………Fuck.

Random Notes:

It’s obvious how well-liked Brad Staubitz is. He scored an empty-netter, and the team was so happy for him it made my heart soar like a pelagoris.

Shots on goal…Montreal 27, Komisareks 31.

Carey Price, decked out in black, with black cowboy hat and watch chain dangling from his vest pocket, looked magnificent and should be a shoo-in for the next Bat Masterson movie.

Next game – a golf course near you.  &$%#^&

About Those First-Rounders

Ron Schwartz at Silver Oak Blog has put together a nice look into NHL draft first-round picks since 2001, showing charts and graphs, and he breaks down every first-rounder from every team and where they’re playing now. He gives us the distribution of each position, shows a world map of where they’ve all come from, and it’s a nice job and deserves a look.

See what he says and scroll down to the visual work. Have a look at the Habs picks in the new millennium, beginning with Mike Komisarek, who went 7th overall. Other first-round Habs as the years unfolded after 2001 were Chris Higgins, Andrei Kostitsyn, Kyle Chipchura, Carey Price, David Fischer, Ryan Mcdonagh, Louis Leblanc, Jarred Tinordi, and Nathan Beaulieu.

 

 

Carey Price And Mike Komisarek Help Habs Win

It was everything you might expect from a Habs-Leafs game – classic hockey atmosphere, lots of scoring chances, great goaltending at both ends, hard hitting.

And another surprisingly bad pass from Leaf Mike Komisarek who put the puck directly onto the stick of Mike Cammalleri in front of the net which sealed the 2-0 victory for the Habs and which caused Leaf goaltender Jonas Gustavsson to scream an f-bomb for all to see.

It was a beautiful pass from Komisarek. Right on the tape. Just the wrong team, that’s all.

Thanks a lot. Please do it again.

Leafs GM Brian Burke was heralded as the one guy who could turn this sorry Leaf franchise around. He’d won a Cup with Anaheim, and managed to secure not one but two Sedins while boss in Vancouver.

But one thing has always puzzled me. He went out and got free agent Komisarek, fresh from a mediocre career in Montreal, gave him solid money (five years, $22.5 million) and it was announced far and wide that the Leafs’ defence problems were a thing of the past with Komisarek on board.

The first few days after signing Komisarek you would think the Leafs had somehow invented a knee-healing time machine and now had Bobby Orr in the lineup. 

The question lingers – How come schmucks like you and me have seen mistakes in Komisarek’s game for years, and Burke and the gang have somehow missed it? What Komisarek does is lay on a few punishing bodychecks, take ill-advised penalties, and make sorry decisions with the puck as he did tonight when he gave Cammalleri an early Christmas present.

Habs fans at the Bell shouldn’t be booing Komisarek, they should be applauding him.

But enough about number eight for the enemy.

Carey Price grabbed another shutout, his fourth of the season, Jeff Halpern scored a shorthanded goal in the second period, and Cammalleri via Komisarek notched a power play marker with four seconds left in the Leafs penalty.

Just a lively, great shutout win for the Canadiens and a night where the paying customers got their money’s worth. The Canadiens definitely played better than in their prior outing, against Nashville, but scorers remain scoreless, which has been going on far too often this year. That 7-2 trouncing of Carolina seems about a year ago, not four games back.

Random Notes:

Shots on goal 38-30 Habs.

Next up – Montreal travels to Philadelphia Monday for a game where PK Subban might not show respect to Mike Richards.

Gentlemen, Start Your Skates

Carey Price is under the weather and may not play in the season opener Thursday night in Toronto. C’mon Carey, shape up. Up and at ’em. Eat six raw eggs and drink a half pint of cod liver oil.

Or if all else fails, smoke a doobie. But not too close to game time.

Finally, after all these months, hockey returns for real. And the schedule maker may have other issues, but having the Habs and Leafs go at it in game one is very good. 

It goes without saying that Habs and Leaf fans love when these two play each other. The rivalry between teams is an old one, a great one, and for those who don’t know, many years ago, many, many years ago, the Leafs were a force to be reckoned with.

I know. I read it somewhere in the Old Testament.

I have my mom’s diary beside me that she wrote when she was a teenager, and the entry for April 18th, 1942 is: “The Toronto Maple Leafs won the Stanley Cup tonight for the first time in years.” She was right. It had been ten years since they’d won it before that, in 1932. Overall though, the team in blue has captured the hardware 13 times, which is better than anyone else except our guys, of course. (Detroit has won it 11 times, the Bruins five).

And imagine the Stanley Cup playoffs ending on April 18th.

My mom knew the Leafs’ Bucko McDonald when she was growing up in Sundridge, Ontario, where he’s from, and it’s entirely possible she liked the Torontonians as a young girl. Maybe all those times she helped me type letters to the Montreal Canadiens at the kitchen table, she was secretly a Leaf fan and never mentioned it. (Bucko is known for another reason too: he coached Bobby Orr in nearby Parry Sound when Orr was a wee lad and McDonald can certainly claim some responsibility for helping Orr grow as a player in his formative years).

As a hockey fan, I have great respect for much of the history of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Conn Smythe and Frank Selke building the team in the early days; Turk Broda, Syl Apps, Hap Day, the Kid Line, Bill Barilko. Later, Tim Horton, Dave Keon, Frank Mahovlich, Johnny Bower.

The Eddie Shack – John Ferguson battles that usually led to bench-clearing brawls. Backstrom and Keon lining up for a faceoff. Punch Imlach with his fedora and arrogant smirk. Harold Ballard saying and doing the outrageous, often distastefully and lacking a certain amount of grace and decorum. But he was a fixture and mover and shaker at the Gardens for decades.

All those many nights when the Canadiens and Leafs went toe to toe at the Forum and Maple Leaf Gardens and fans got their money’s worth in spades.

The story of hockey in many ways is the story of Montreal and those dastardly Toronto Maple Leafs.

But I’m a Habs fan, and so I do what I always do – hope for a Montreal slaughter, a gigantic take-down of the boys in blue. I want a demolishing, a trouncing, a slaughtering, a one-sided embarrassment. It’s not too much to ask.

Bring ’em on. Bring on Komisarek with the bad passes and bad penalties, bring on the unlikable duo of Mikhail Grabovski and Phil Kessel. In fact, on the subject of Grabovski, here’s a lovely little read in case you missed it; Couple sues Maple Leaf.

Random Notes:

Roman Hamrlik is still nursing his sore knee but seems almost ready. Andre Markov says it’s a secret when he’ll return, and Mike Cammalleri stays in civvies for one night only for getting down and dirty against the Islanders in pre-season. Hey, you don’t mess with Cammy.

 

Boston Or Philadelphia? Who Do You Want For The Habs?

Who would you like the Habs to play – Boston or Philadelphia?

It’s a tough one. Both teams look pretty solid to me and each has a reasonably impressive lineup, although not as impressive as Washington and Pittsburgh. Boston boasts Patrice Bergeron, elder statesman Mark Recchi, and Milan Lucic (remember when Lucic hammered Montreal’s Mike Komisarek). Michael Ryder and Miroslav Satan can both hurt you with big goals. And don’t forget sniper Marc Savard and the guy who bumps his head on the scoreboard – Zdeno Chara.

Looks like a pretty good squad to me.

Philadelphia is no slouch either. Mike Richards is a bonafide young star and leader, and there’s the ever-dangerous trio of Daniel Briere, Simon Gagne, and Scott Hartnell. Chris Pronger anchors the defence, and everyone knows Chris Pronger was and is a big-time player.

They also have one of the nuttiest shit disturbers in the league – Dan Carcillio, and frankly, I don’t know if I want the Habs to be on the ice with him. He’s quite an asshole, but he draws people into penalties and the bonus is, he’s got fairly good hands. But really, I don’t like his act. That instance a while ago when he lurched his head back like he’d been sucker punched but the closest fist to him was at least a foot away, was ridiculous and unprofessional. Don Cherry goes on about Carcillo constantly and is definitely not a fan. In fact, judging by the way he talks about him on Coach’s Corner, he can’t stand the guy.

Both teams look strong, but Boston has blown a 3-0 series lead. So Boston could be nervous and Philadelphia could come out like gangbusters. But Michael Leighton in the Flyers net has seen just limited action over several months, while Boston’s Tuukka Rask has been strong for the Bruins. (I’m assuming Rask is starting).

Who should the Habs play in the Conference Final? I think I’m picking Boston. They’ve blown that big series lead so must not be playing well). They have a few key injuries – David Krejci and Marco Sturm, and all’s not well right now with the Bostonians. But whatever. Bring on either team. We’re on a mission.

Leafs Take Another Big Step In Giving The Bruins That Number One Draft Pick

Maybe I’ll be proven wrong, but I think Brian Burke is out of his mind.

The Leafs GM just traded four regulars – Niklas Hagman, Matt Stajan, Jamal Mayers, and Ian White to Calgary for overrated and mistake-prone thug Dion Phaneuf, along with Fredrik Sjostrom and Keith Aulie, neither of whom you took in your pool.

Burke also selected Mike Komisarek to the US Olympic team, which might explain things a little.


The Leafs Should Have Just Asked Us

I was listening the other day to a sports talk show based out of Toronto and the reporters were going on about Mike Komisarek and how he’s been a disappointment so far. They suggested he’s probably trying to do too much, and hasn’t been everything Leaf supporters thought he would be.

All they had to do was ask Habs fans. We watched on a regular basis the mishaps, miscues, and misfires from this guy. Somehow, the Toronto brass must have missed every single Montreal game played in the past when this guy wore the CH.

This reminds me of the scouting job done by Toronto people in 1972. Leaf head coach John McLellan and head scout Bob Davidson travelled to Russia to check out the Soviet squad before the big Summit Series was about to take place, and came back with this report: The Russians pass the puck too much, don’t shoot enough, and are too small. And their biggest weakness is in goal.

We know what happened later when we saw this team for the first time, and we definitely got to know their goalie, Vladisalv Tretiak, who not only stood on his head in 1972, but proceeded to do so for many years to come. (the 1975 Montreal Canadiens-Red Army game is a perfect example of seeing this guy perform miracles).

So the scouting report by McLellan and Davidson was as wrong as wrong can be.

All Toronto saw about Komisarek was that he was a big hitter, mean sometimes, and would drop the gloves from time to time. He was to be the poster boy for the new, tough Leafs. But somehow they didn’t see the rest of Komisarek – the guy who takes terrible, ill-timed penalties, and who makes such bad decisions with the puck. He should get Christmas cards with a thank-you note from every player on other teams whom he handed the puck to which led to a goal or good scoring chance.

The Leafs couldn’t get it right about the Russians, but maybe Davidson and McLellan were tired after the long plane ride and then a train to Leningrad, and weren’t thinking straight. And Tretiak was getting married the next day so his mind wasn’t on the game when he let in eight goals.

But this is 2009, with new scouts and no overseas travel involved in this decision. Why was Komisarek rated so highly by Toronto brass?

The Devil Made Me Write It

It began just fine, except for the mention from the broadcasters that the Canadiens haven’t won a game in the west in almost six years. The team killed penalties, got chances, skated hard. Then Edmonton’s Mike Comrie scored late in the first period, and it was the beginning of the end.

Yes, Comrie broke in hard, but Montreal’s Jaroslav Spacek was beside him every step of the way. And instead of diving and letting his stick throw Comrie off, Spacek did nothing except skate alongside him, and Comrie rifled a nice shot past Carey Price. A great defenceman would’ve made that play. And once again, the Habs began to look flustered, and visions of Vancouver danced through my head.

And even when it was two-nothing for the Oilers it seemed possible the Canadiens could still make a game of it. But Andrei Kostitsyn then decided to pull a Mike Komisarek/Patrice Brisebois, a ‘Komibois’, and threw the puck through the middle, which of course was intercepted and voila, it became 3-0.

Lacklustre play by Spacek and a boneheaded play by Kostitsyn basically did them in.

And who decided to put teams in western Canada?

Blame it on John Ziegler. He was the NHL president when the Flames, Canucks and Oilers entered the league. He’s responsible. And maybe we should also blame the schedule makers. They were the ones who decided to send the Canadiens to western Canada. Blame it also on the weather, horoscopes, wives, pets, kids, mother-in-laws, beer, zamboni drivers, bloggers, western cuisine, the smell of the Pacific and the stench of oil.

Can’t be the team, can it?

You bet it can. Blame it on a slow defence and forwards who don’t score. Throw in Guillaume Latendresse, Tomas Plekanec and of course Kostitsyn for good measure. And don’t forget coach Jacques Martin and GM Bob Gainey. And the trainers who didn’t convince Andrei Markov to wrap tape around his skates to protect his ankles and feet.

You could say they played better in the second half of the game, even scoring two goals. But of course it wasn’t enough.

To recap the five games, the Habs were completely outshot in both Toronto and Buffalo and squeaked in wins. They played well in Calgary and lost, and Martin’s decision to go with Jaroslav Halak there is questionable. Forget about the Vancouver game, and Edmonton wasn’t a whole lot better, although it was much closer.

Pretty dismal stuff.

And not winning in Western Canada in six years? It’s ridiculous and inexcusable. Maybe if it wasn’t such a love-in for the boys when they travel west they might perform better. They’re treated like gods in these western cities. Habs jerseys wherever you look. “Go Habs Go” drowns out the home team chants.

Maybe they’re believing they’re rock stars. How would they play if there were no Habs jerseys, no “Go Habs Go”, no big cheers. Just another enemy coming  to town. Maybe they’d play better.

Can’t be any worse.

Thursday, Habs home opener against Colorado. Go east young men.