The Dismal Beat Goes On

Late-’80s Claude Julien.

The wild and crazy Montreal Canadiens were rusty and sloppy in Claude Julien’s 2017 coaching debut, and their 3-1 loss to the visiting Winnipeg Jets ruined what could have been a fun breakout party for the new Blind River bench boss.

Probably rusty because they had five days off. And sloppy, regardless of who’s behind the bench. Nothing new about their sloppiness. They’d probably be a mess if Toe Blake was behind them.

Was any part of this loss Julien’s fault?

If he was Kreskin, he might have plunked Nathan Beaulieu into the press box pre-game, before this mediocre defenceman could think he was Bobby Orr during a second period power play, and which quickly showed he’s no Bobby Orr.

Or Gaston Gingras for that matter.

Beaulieu decided to do some fancy stickhanding and was promptly stripped of the puck by Joel Armia, who walked in and tied it.

And because Julien didn’t have his skates on, he couldn’t be on the ice at 1:16 of the third when Emelin, Weber, Plekanec, Danault and Max decided to show their soft and tender side as Big Buff muscled his way in from the right side and found Mathieu Perreault, who notched the winner easy as pie.

Winnipeg’s third goal was an empty-netter, so I guess Julien can’t be blamed for that one either.

Wasn’t Carey Price’s fault either, as the big fellow snagged shots left and right, including lightning-quick glove hand robbery on rookie star Patrick Laine’s laser in the first period and then again in the third, plus coming up big a plethora of other times throughout.

Price was his old self, which is a good thing. So were his teammates, which is a bad thing.

Gump Worsley, manning the pipes for the New York Rangers in the late-’50s, was asked what team gave him the most trouble. Gump answered, “the Rangers”.

Price can say exactly the same thing about his teammates. Coverage means more than just car and house insurance, boys.

Random Notes:

Jets outshot the Habs 33-20.

Either the Sens or Leafs will win tonight, considering they play each other. Which means if the Sens win they’ll be within two points of Montreal, and if the Leafs pull it out, they’ll be just five back. Both teams also have games in hand on the Canadiens.


12 thoughts on “The Dismal Beat Goes On”

  1. Hey Dennis, I wasn’t really to worried about the loss…rusty ..unoiled. .. caroded whatever word best describes the effort it’s still early in Mr. Julian realm. I’m sure they will practise their breakouts before the next game.

  2. Today’s game proved one thing…

    It doesn’t matter if you have Mario Andretti as your driver.
    You’re not going to win the Indy 500 if your car is a Chevette running on three cylinders.

  3. It’s going to take more than one practice and one game to unscrew up the former coach’s mess… toss in the fact our heroes are coming off the 5 day break and you have today’s effort.

    I disagree about Beaulieu. I think he needs coaching, not benching. Being paired with Emelin hasn’t helped his game, another strike against the former coach. When he was with Weber at the start of the season, he was improving. Julien will only help his game.

    I don’t know if you caught Pateryn’s comment about the former coach breathing down his neck all the time, but it was telling. How non-production star Desharnais could have so much ice time and the young blueliners catch so much heat is mind-boggling. I have to wonder how the former coach hung on so long. I think has be “goat pictures!”

    I expect the Habs to snap out of this funk this week.

  4. I was hoping for better but not surprised at today’s result. At least Julien got to see exactly what the problems are. Now he can try to fix them which may not be easy. On the bright side it was one of Price’s best games in a long while.

  5. Dennis you pretty much summed it up for me. I agree with your assessment on Nate. He was like that in Junior also. He has been in the NHL now going on 5 seasons now. I also see Petry as a complete waste also but not because of skill so much….just really soft out there. Even Weber is not looking all that nasty and quite frankly he never really has since we acquired him. I can’t for the world figure why Pateryn can’t draw in to this extremely soft D core. It’s a disappointing get year and although I like Julien I think it hard to get blood out of a turnip. There are way too many soft players on this team. I now have some twice gesture of doubt that we will see any playoff action from our once glorious Habs.

  6. Mike, how he used certain players could be odd sometimes. Some guys got way too many quality minutes, and some guys like Pateryn seemed to be in his doghouse. Julien may turn this mess around, Last year was a killer, and a win in New York on Tuesday would be nice.

  7. Exactly, DJ. Seeing Price like that was a relief. Now if the rest of them can get their shit together.

  8. It’s a tough part of the schedule, Cliff, the dog days, and I hope that’s why Weber is a bit off. Pateryn is big and strong and could be a key guy back there, but Therrien didn’t seem to trust him. If they can put together some wins and finish strong, there’s still hope. But we’ll see.

  9. I am optimistic about what Julien can do with this team. They have some talent, their confidence was slashed, they as yet aren’t bad-mouthing Thornbush….that’s good. Somewhere between the season’s great start and the recent slump, I see the boys capable of entertaining us by getting back on track. Then Marc gets a look at who needs moving in and/or out. PLEASE Marc give our youth a chance with the new atmosphere in the room and on the ice!!! I wish we were bigger and grittier too but not all those types are lined up for free. AY74 throws a few hits, #6 clears a few bodies, BIG Mac34?? rattles some dust off the boards courtesy opposing dudes , Price pulls of some Price reel-type saves…..I’M IN!!!!!!!!! Very possible. Those hooty-toot mountain warbler sparrows will grace Dennis’ window once more. Who wears #22….is he worthy of the honour? Night all.

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