HIGH FLYING – Canadiens-5 Winnipeg-4 (Overtime) Nov. 4, 2017

Nov 5th, 2017 | By

I’m sure the coaches will find things  not to their liking about the Canadiens/Jets game on Saturday night.  Coaches are paid to do that sort of thing.

As to the rest of us, I’m not hearing many complaints, especially from the Montreal fan base.

This was an extaordinary night filled with the kind of end-to-end free wheeling hockey we seldom see in the so-called  ‘new’ NHL.  It was a game that featured a two goal third period Canadiens comeback and Max Pacioretty scoring the game winner at 3:07 of overtime on the Canadiens 50th shot of the game.

EARLY BURIAL – Minnesota-6 Canadiens-3 (Nov. 2, 2017)

Nov 2nd, 2017 | By

In hockey, it all starts with goaltending. Without it, entire team dynamics change radically.

The Canadiens are getting minor league level goaltending from Carey Price this season and everything is coming apart in front of him.

The Canadiens were buried by Price before the game at Minnesota was five minutes old. The goals that the Wild scored ten seconds apart weren’t just bad; they were awful.

Bad goaltending changes everything. Price’s teammates, knowing Price was having another one of his bad nights, were forced to alter the way they wanted to play the game.

BREATHTAKING – Canadiens-8 Ottawa-3 (Oct. 30, 2017)

Oct 31st, 2017 | By

Can everybody take a deep breath now?

Probably not, but at least everyone in Montreal will get a good night’s rest after the Canadiens 8-3 win over the Senators in Ottawa.

We’ve been saying since training camp that the Canadiens aren’t as bad as they’ve looked. There are obvious flaws in this team that will continue to be irritants as the season moves along, but there was no way that a team that leads the league in shots on goal is going to continue to produce the fewest goals.  Thirteen goals in two games may be too small a sample to declare that all is finally well with the Canadiens but it’s a start.

CAREER NIGHT FOR DANAULT – Canadiens-5 NY Rangers-4 (Oct. 28, 2017)

Oct 29th, 2017 | By

The way things have been going, you take a win any way you can but, despite a 5-4 decision over the Rangers, few left the Bell Centre Saturday night feeling confident that the Canadiens had started to turn things around from the mess that has been the entire first month of their season.    The Canadiens took advantage of an ill-prepared Rangers to take a 3-0 first period lead but then proceeded to blow it through the second and third periods before Phillip Danault bailed them out with his second goal and fourth point of the game.

SELF INFLICTED – Los Angeles-4 Canadiens-0 (Oct. 26, 2017)

Oct 27th, 2017 | By

It’s becoming a nightly story. The Canadiens come of the gate flying. Dominate but don’t score. In this game Los Angeles gets a deflected goal late in the opening period with the Canadiens leading on the shot clock 16-6. Eleven seconds later they fail to clear the puck and it winds up behind Carey Price .Against the team with the best defensive record in the early season that means lights out.

BREAKING OUT – Canadiens-5 Florida-1 (Oct. 24, 2017)

Oct 25th, 2017 | By

It’s always said that you need the good players playing well to win most nights in hockey. The Canadiens go-to players had good nights against the Panthers. The three stars told it all. First star was Shea Weber, who had two goals. Carey Price stopped 26 of 27 shots for second star and Jonathan Drouin got the third star with a strong two-point night. Add to that goals by Max Pacioretty Alex Galchenyuk and Brendan Gallagher and the Canadiens were the full package.

SWEPT IN CALIFORNIA – Anaheim-6 Canadiens-2 (Oct. 20, 2017)

Oct 21st, 2017 | By

It is said that when you hit rock bottom there is nowhere to go but up.

The Canadiens seemed to hit rock bottom in the first period in Anaheim. At least we hope it was rock bottom.

If there was ever a team ripe for the picking it was Anaheim. Five key players were sidelinedincluding forwards ryan Kesler, Ryan Getzlaf and Patrick Eaves plus defensemen Hampus Lindholm and Sami Vatanen. And in the fourth minute they lost defenseman Cam Fowler.

Knowing that the Canadiens opening period was their worst in a season chock full of bad periods. It was total capitulation. They seemed afraid of the Ducks size and aggressiveness. As a result they were embarrassed in every zone. They were treated the middle of the ice like ‘no man’s land’ which allowed the Ducks to outshoot them 21-7 and outscore them 3-0.

STARK REALITY – Los Angeles-5 Canadiens-1 (Oct. 18, 2017)

Oct 19th, 2017 | By

At what point do we decide that what we are seeing is no longer a trend but cold reality?

Reality comes in the numbers. It is possible to make numbers sing any tune but those the Canadiens have put up through the first two weeks of the season can’t be sugar coated. .

Seven games into the season the Canadiens record is 1-5-1. They have lost six in a row. The have been outscored 27-10. They have averaged 1.43 goals per game. Only six of their goals have come at even strength. That is reality.

EXCUSES RUNNING OUT – San Jose-5 Canadiens-2 (Oct. 17, 2017)

Oct 18th, 2017 | By

At what point do we run out of excuses?

seems to me we’ve been subjected to every explanation imaginable for five straight Canadiens losses starting with the fact that Claude Julien was implementing a new system at training camp, a rebuilt defense, Alex Galchenyuk, the Jonathan Drouin centre-ice audtion and on and on……. 

I’m not quite there yet, but there are more than a few who are coming to the conclusion that we should stop making excuses and admit that this team, as presently constituted, is simply not very good and the only solution is a major shakeup.

FOURTH STRAIGHT LOSS – Toronto-4 Canadiens-3 (Overtime) October 14, 2017)

Oct 14th, 2017 | By

They were better but still not good enough. The Canadiens scored three goals,    That’s is a good thing. They also came from behind to take a 3-2 lead midway through the second period but then coughed that up and in the end lost 4-3 in overtime. That’s four losses in a row.  Four losses

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