The Montreal Canadiens have just proven wrong three-quarters of the hockey world, plus Las Vegas oddsmakers, by winning game one and not bowing out in four straight as so many had thought.
Most are shocked. Everyone but Habs fans. And right now I’m singin “I’m sittin’ on top of the world.”
It was a nervous and overmatched first period for Montreal as the Caps dominated and bombarded Jaroslav Halak, and things weren’t pretty. Analysts sat back, patted themselves on the back, and reminded themselves about how smart they were.
But in the second, although still not pretty, the Canadiens showed signs of life, and by the end of the second, after getting chances and beginning to handle the puck with confidence, those at the game and watching on TV at home and in sports bars everywhere were surely starting to think that maybe this thing could go either way.
It was more of the same in the third, but by this time, Jose Theodore, his teammates, and all those government workers wearing red in the stands, knew they was in a game. Alex Ovechkin still remained asleep, and the Habs were getting chances. Many chances. It was nerve-racking. I was almost ready to start smoking again.
“You can win this, boys” was the rallying call of Habs fans everywhere, and the players themselves.
And they did. Like a magical, mystical moment, Tomas Plekanec in overtime skated in over the Caps blueline and fired a missile past Jose Theodore. I wanted to jump for joy and swing from the chandelier if I had one. But I must remain subdued and passive, calm, collected, and mature. It’s just one game. Just one win.
ONE FREAKIN’ BEAUTIFUL MOTHER OF A WIN!
The scorers scored and that’s what we need. Mike Cammalleri in the first, Scott Gomez in the third, and Plekanec in overtime.
Jaroslav Halak was fantastic, especially in the first period when Washington was all over the Canadiens. The defence, led by Jaroslav Spacek and Hal Gill, did a big job. But Nicklas Backstrom was dangerous all evening and this needs to be addressed.
Game two Saturday night. I know better than to say anything about this. We’ve already got the first game and at least a split. I’m not saying any more.
Gaston watched the game carefully and was a treat to be with. Usually he’s a bit of an asshole.
For those not familiar with Gaston, there’s several stories about him under “Gaston” in the Categories section over to the right.