Tag Archives: Steve Ott

Habs Fall In Game 4

The Canadiens lost a tight one in New York, falling 2-1 to a revitalized Rangers team, and now it’s gonna take six games instead of five to dispatch these NY bastards to the nearest golf course.

I want these guys gone. I’m tired of Zuccarello and Kreider and McDonagh and Nash and the lousy cop anthem singers. Tired of all things Rangers. Let me be the first to say good riddance after the Canadiens put the hammer down on Thursday and Saturday.

Nash ran Price, and how beautiful it would’ve been to see Weber send the big Rangers’ nose and several chiclets into the upper deck. Kreider’s been a bum but he remains despicable regardless. Zuccarello, waving his stick that would be too big for Mike McCarron, needs to be scalped by Steve Ott.

The little bugger might have the longest stick on his team. Maybe he’d be better if he cut a foot or so off it. Maybe he’s never thought of it.

Their goaltender, Henny Lunny, the one who embarrasses teammates for all to see after they make a mistake like not getting him a stick during the play, can’t always be so lucky to have a puck hit his stick that’s laying on the ice, and have the biscuit scoot safely away.

And of course there was that Shea Weber missile that clanged off the iron late in the game. Henny was full of it on this night.

The Canadiens will pull their pants up Thursday in Montreal, and finish it back on Broadway. Then the New Yorkers, including the anthem singers, can take in some Bronx and Queens baseball and not be back on my TV until next fall.

Turnovers played a role in the Habs falling short. Name a defenceman – he turned it over. All of them. Most flagrant was Andrei Markov letting a puck at the backboards carom off his skate and straight out to Jesper Fast, who banged it home.

But still in the first period, Torrey Michell converted a Radu to Mitchell to Weber to Mitchell, shortly after a Radu penalty was over, the game was suddenly tied, and visions of a 3-1 series lead danced in my head.

Sadly, not only did New York dominate the second period, a goal from that Nash fellow put the team ahead, and try as Montreal might in the third, especially in the dying moments, they weren’t able to light the lamp, and the series is again tied.

Playoff hockey isn’t for the faint of heart. Thunderous hits, chirping, bleeding faces, sore noses. And that’s just in my living room. The play on the ice was almost as bad.

And as exciting as this series has been, I want it over in six games. Speaking for myself, of course.

Maybe you want seven games. Maybe you’re not as sick of Zuccarella and Henny and Nash and those dudes as I am. But I think you are.

Big game on Thursday. Huge.

 

 

Canadiens Zing The Blues

seven

Not much to report here.

Only that Canadiens beat the 5-1 (now 5-2) St. Louis Blues 3-0 to win their seventh straight out of the gate, with Carey Price recording his second shutout of this early season.

Seven wins and no losses, with Price as stingy as Scrooge McDuck, and everyone chipping in and doing their fare share of the housework.

On TV today it seemed like I heard nothing except how good the Blues are. And tonight I tuned into Montreal’s TSN 690 radio during the first intermission and the on-air guys simply gushed, and I mean gushed, about how fantastic the Blues are.

All that gushing, and the Habs were leading 1-0 at the time.

The first period showed the Blues on top of their game, outplaying and outmuscling the home team, and outshooting them 17-10. It was a concern. But like I say, we were leading.

Blues assistant coach Kirk Muller, interviewed midway through the frame, said there were good chances at both ends, but Kirk was just being polite because he’s a polite kind of guy. A good old Kingston boy.

Montreal was going nowhere, but Max Pacioretty deflected Tomas Plekanec’s shot with a minute and a half left, and outplayed or not, the home team took the lead.

Shortly before Alex Semin bulged the net in the second period with a fine wrist shot, Price made a huge glove save on Vlad Tarasenko, which prompted Scott Gomez to pat Price on the head.

Yes, that Scott Gomez. The face I hoped never to see again. Congratulating the opposing goalie like he used to when he played for the Habs. That Mr. Nice Guy thing to the enemy. The congratulations I never wanted to see again.

And there it was and there he was.

If the Blues are so good, how come they need Gomez?

Torrey Mitchell would make it 3-0 in the third frame after firing home a Subban rebound, and the Canadiens roll along like a train chugging across the prairies, with a bar car filled with us whoopin’ and hollerin’.

Random Notes:

It’s an amazing 7 goals against in 7 games for the team.

Although the Habs were outshot 17-10 in the first period, the Blues only slightly edged them in overall shots – 38 to 36.

There was slight nastiness. Nathan Beaulieu and Steve Ott squared off in the second period, and Beaulieu held his own against this guy who was playing like he wiped his ass with fibreglass insulation.

Ott was at it all night, that’s his game, that’s why he’s in the league, and he eventually got tossed with a couple of minutes left.

When I was a smallish yet shifty right winger for Orillia’s Byers Bulldozers bantams and midgets, I was a bit of an asshole like Ott. But he gets in there and gives and takes blows, whereas I relied on bigger teammates to come to my rescue.

Next up – Friday in Buffalo, and it would be nice to make this thing eight straight. Buffalo might be better than last year, I don’t know. They’ve got this 18-year old phenom Jack Eichel, which must help.

Eighteen years old. Imagine.

The Sabres last year managed only 23 wins all season.

And we have seven already!

 

 

If You Can’t Lick ‘Em In The Alley…….

When Steve Ott was growing up in Summerside, PEI, he would hear it all the time. “Steve,” they would say, “you can lick anybody.” And with great confidence, young Ott went out into the world and did just that.

Jeff Halpern was first given a tongue-lashing by Ott, and eventually a solid licking. “I wouldn’t do it on first meeting,” explained Ott, “but seeing that this was our fifth date, I felt I’d make the move. I’m a gentleman that way.”

Ott’s wife is now filing for divorce. “He never licked me like that,” she complained. “What’s Halpern got that I don’t have?”

“I just got the urge,” says Ott. “I’ve tried licking my teammates’ visors, but somehow it’s not the same. I guess it’s the forbidden fruit thing.”

 

 

 

 

Domination In Buffalo

It was as one-sided as can be, a 5-1 Habs romp over a lacklustre Buffalo team, and how nice it is to clinch a playoff spot with eight games still to go instead of on the last day of the season, which is what we’ve seen in the past.

Just a great night for the Canadiens, in many ways, from start to finish.

A terrific rebound performance after losing to the Washington Capitals on Tuesday. A domination of the other team like we’ve rarely seen this year. And best of all, a solid effort from almost everyone, top to bottom, beginning with Peter Budaj, who wins his seventh straight game in relief of Carey Price, and who said beforehand how proud he is to be a Montreal Canadien.

Maybe the entire team feels that way. Maybe the ones who weren’t proud aren’t there anymore.

Brendan Gallagher was a force all night, scoring Montreal’s third goal and in the thick of most things whenever he stepped on the ice. His joy of playing hockey and getting his nose dirty is written all over his face. This isn’t a small guy. Somehow his personal stats got mixed up along the way. Gallagher’s a huge guy. Just ask anyone who plays against him.

CBC’s Craig Simpson might be wrong when he says that next time around, opponents will play him differently and he might not be as effective down the road. I ask why not? I see no reason why he can’t continue to be an energetic and skilled guy who causes such havoc. Let other teams adjust. He’ll just plow ahead, play the only way he knows how, and maybe it’ll open things up for his teammates.

Ron MacLean said between periods that Gallagher is the modern day version of P.J.Stock……. I have no words for this.

Francis Bouillon took on Steve Ott after Ott had laid a punishing hit on Gallagher, and the super-strong Bouillon got the better of this Buffalo hothead. Ott also licked Jeff Halpern’s visor for some reason, which is a fine example of Ott not being completely all there.

Rene Bourque opened the game’s scoring, and once again he enjoyed a fine game, his second since returning from injury. Bourque’s a key guy, there’s no doubt, because you can never have enough big forwards who can skate like the wind, burst to the net using muscle, with good hands as a bonus.

P. K. Subban was once again sensational in notching a goal and an assist and moving the puck like a guy who’s been around for years. I don’t see a lot of other d-men around the league, but if someone is playing better than our guy right now, I’d like to know who he is.

Alex Galchenyuk scored his team’s second goal and it’s five games now with at least a point. This is a story in itself. Galchenyuk busted out of the gate in the beginning of the season, but somewhere along the line began to struggle. We chalked it up to a young guy learning his trade and the team and fans have been patient. It can’t be easy.

But wouldn’t you know it, this nineteen-year old has come alive again. He’s got a second wind, with the postseason just around the corner. The timing is impeccable.

I thought David Desharnais played a fine game, and he and Max assisted on Gallagher’s goal. Desharnais came close several times and his playmaking often proved dangerous, but until he lights ’em up, he’s going to hear his critics. Maybe even rightly so. We’re a demanding bunch.

Andrei Markov was in charge on this night, adding a power play goal and an assist and quarterbacking like he’s done so often. Although with him being caught up ice, the Sabres were able to score a shorthanded marker and ruin Budaj’s shutout. But aside from this one little pothole in the road, Markov was solid.

It’s a write-off season for the Buffalo Sabres, who, with a 30th-ranked power play and dismal play all-round, remind me a lot of last year’s Habs. So I kind of feel for them a bit. Then I get over it real quick.

Random Notes:

The Canadiens outshot the Sabres 42-15, and it was basically a nice, easy night for Budaj. But he stopped them when he had to, except for one, and what more can we ask?

Michael Ryder posted two assists, as did Max.

On to Toronto for a Saturday night special. With the very real possibility of the Habs and Leafs squaring off in the first round of the playoffs, it would be so great to see the Canadiens thump the bastards and take no prisoners. Montreal plays these guys not only on Saturday but also on the last day of the season, which is coming up fast. We need a serious statement made on both nights.

 

 

 

Habs Say Hello To The Dallas Stars

And so it begins.

In just a handful of hours from now, on Tuesday evening, the Canadiens kick off pre-season by hosting the Dallas Stars, a team fresh from training camp in Charlottetown, and although the big marathon doesn’t begin until October 6th when the Habs prepare to wallop the Leafs in Toronto, at least the games are beginning after all these months of people doing what people do in the summer.

Drinking beer and ogling the opposite sex.

It’s going to be extremely interesting to see the slightly different Habs in these next eight games. No Roman Hamrlik and Benoit Pouliot now. No Brent Sopel, Tom Pyatt, Alex Auld, Jeff Halpern, Paul Mara, Alexandre Picard, and James Wisniewski.

In their place, Erik Cole and Peter Budaj are newcomers bound for the big club, but no way am I going to attempt to figure out who will graduate from the other dozen or so who are making noises. I’m hoping Alexei Yemelin makes the grade but that’s all you can get from me. Because I don’t have a clue what’s going through the heads of Jacques Martin and company.

This is the lineup for the Dallas game, from Canadiens.com

Goalies: Lawson and Price
Defensemen: Diaz, Gill, Tinordi, Weber, Woywitka, Yemelin
Forwards: Berger, Blunden, Cammalleri, Cole, Engqvist, Kostitsyn, Massé, Palushaj, Plekanec, Schultz, Trotter and Willsie.

The Guardian in Charlottetown reports that the Dallas Stars, the team in for a lousy and painful time at the Bell Centre, enjoyed their stay on the Island and all went well.

“It’s definitely been a nice experience,” said Stars forward Steve Ott.

“Everybody’s been first class and I have only positive things to say and especially being here has been a lot of fun. You want to work harder when you see a crowd come out to support the community and our team and it makes it easier to go out there and try hard.”

First-year head coach Glen Gulutzan agreed with Ott’s assessment of the training camp on the Island and has enjoyed working at the CARI Centre.

“(The facilities) are fabulous,” Gulutzan said.

“We have two rinks side-by side, we have a nice field outside for the guys to do stretching, the weather’s been great and coming (to the Charlottetown Civic Centre) to play in the big rink has been perfect so it’s a real good setup for us.”

Isn’t it going to be funny when the Dallas Stars become fully aware that their orange juice was spiked with copious amounts of ex-lax and Valium because so many of those fun-loving Islanders are Habs fans!

Game time on Tuesday is 7:30 PM eastern, or for me on the other side of the country – 4:30 PM, with the game being shown on good old RDS. In fact, seven of the eight preseason games will be televised. (The Canadiens in Ottawa on Friday won’t be).

A nice win for the Habs to kick things off would be swell. And don’t worry, Dallas Stars, the ex-lax and valium wear off after a day or so.