Friday, February 20, 2009

Best of the worst

credit habs inside/out

Well, I said that the Montreal Canadiens stand a better chance of winning when Guillaume Latendresse is playing next to Tanguay and Koivu. And while the Habs won, it clearly showed that the problem/solution wasn’t Latendresse playing or not on that line. Guy Carbonneau said after the game he was happier with his team effort, especially on the defensive side. It’s true. They played better defensively. But I think the coach tried his best not to simply lash out on some players.

Koivu was a lot more honest about his team play. They need to do better than that. They need to play better as a unit and the solution/problem can’t be imputed on a single player. Or even a couple of players. Or the coach. EVERYBODY has to give more than they are giving right now. Well, to a couple of exceptions.

Carey Price is playing his ass off and the team owes him a couple of victories. He has been spectacular multiple times this year and yesterday wasn’t different. I can’t blame him on the first goal, a shot that deflected off Markov and ended up on Heatley’s stick. I was wondering why put Ruttu and Vermette before Heatley in shootout but then again, I don’t really care. You could blame Price on the second goal, I guess. But he can’t do everything alone and Bouillon didn’t help on that play, letting Foligno get to the puck without doing much.

Saku Koivu has been one of the most consistent Habs this season. Tanguay is getting results and shows how talented he is but he isn’t working as hard as the captain. Clearly, Saku wants to win. It’s a shame not enough players show the same intensity because we wouldn’t have to talk about a team nobody feel confident about despite a very respectable 24 points in 18 games. The team is getting the results their talent should get them, but they are lucky. It could easily be 8 points less by the way they played.

Now we know officially that Komisarek will be missed longer than we all hoped. Five weeks is a long time in this sport. Will Bob Gainey be able to move some of those extra veterans on offence to help his defensive corps? Let’s just hope because neither of the players we have right now are able to effectively replace Big Mike.

I really liked Begin reaction, when facing Cody Bass. As soon as he saw Laraque over his shoulder he dropped the gloves. F*** you Georges. I’m fighting for ice time here! Also, I swear I saw Carbo talk with his players on the bench before the shootout and say “five hole”. Saku tried a different move than usual (that was a big surprise) going between the legs and both goals were there. The only player who didn’t try it was Kovalev.

So there you have it. Out of two teams playing way under their talent level, we are the best. Yay! I guess… Now we’ll see if they can pull it off against Boston.

Urgh. This has the potential to be another ugly jersey retirement…

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