Friday, November 02, 2007

Engraver on Stand-by: Habs 5 - Bullies 2

A gem.

Last night, the Montreal Canadiens came up with a gem.

They dominated the Philadelphia Flyers in every aspect of the game. Speed, grit, hitting, fighting, goaltending, shooting, everything related to playing hockey.

Sure this Flyer sans Gagné team was a depleted version of the squad that has steered the sharpest turn out of mediocrity the NHL has seen this season to lead the Atlantic division. From worst to first, the Flyers came to Montreal under these headings.

But Montreal came prepared last night. Still sore from the Briere incident, the players needed to show Danny Boy that he erred in his assessment of Montreal's chances this year. And what resulted was the most convincing team effort this team has come up with this year and maybe in years.

They were swift coming out of their zone, with a defense corps lead by Hamrlik delivering perfect passes to the forwards all night. In this relay, these forwards carried the baton with creativity and purpose into the offensive zone. That means speed and skill.

Briere was booed thoroughly by the Montreal fans every time he hopped over the boards. They too have not forgotten and joined with the team in delivering a very special message to the now demonized once-was hero: you were wrong.

In this sound spanking, Montreal outshot Philadelphia 41-18 and they did so with balance, distributing their dominating ways evenly across the 3 periods. They played well with the lead, coming on stronger and stronger as the game wore on.

It's as good is it gets for this team. This is the Montreal Canadiens at their best. They definitely won't do it every night, but when they do produce a jewel of an effort such as yesterday's game, leave the skepticism and devil's advocate impulses be. Enjoy it.


HabsFan29 said...

Yeah take that you motherfuckers!

Man i had fun watching that one

fezworth said...

Watching Koivu's goal & assists were absolutely glorious.

I don't think I've ever admired a player more than Saku Koivu. I have always been impressed at his willingness to work his hardest, no matter what the circumstances. Through the Reggie Houle years, through injury after injury, through cancer, with good players, with bad, he always turns up, ready to give his best. He clearly represents everything that is noble and good about hockey.

I am too young to have been a fan during the Glory Years of the Habs. Having said that, Koivu perfectly encapsulates the qualities that I imagine the heroes of yesteryear displayed. He is dedicated to not only his team, but his community in a way that very few public figures are.

It's interesting to me that there are so many banners hanging from the rafters of the Bell Centre, so many numbers of people who have been honoured by the team. Saku Koivu is the only player that I've ever actually watched who (in my view) deserves to see his #11 hanging from those rafters.

To sum up; Screw you, Guy Bertrand.