Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Time To Put Our Money Where the Pundits' Mouths Are - Sens Game Preview and Open Thread

Some quick bullet points about the game, then it's rant time!
  • 7:30 PM start, Bell Centre. The game is on Sportsnet East. Sportsnet Ontario has the Leafs-Panthers. Oooooh, that's a good game;
  • Cover charge goes to SLC at Five for Smiting, our interwebs BFF (non-Habs division), and Sherry at Scarlett Ice, who gives the Sens a 1-2 blogger punch any NHL team would kill to have;
  • Despite all the greatness talk, Habs have lost 2 of their last 3. Sens are 3-7 in their last 10;
  • Kovy scored his 24th Sunday, surpassing his Habs season-best 23;
  • Habs PP back to best in the league;
  • Swiss Pastry (tm SLC) most likely goes for the Sens, and is 7-1 with a 2.26 GAA lifetime against the Habs, including 3-0 this year;
  • Heater and The Captain are still on the shelf.
OK here we go. Time to put up or shut up boys. Well, maybe that's a bad saying because you really haven't talked all that much. But everyone else has.

Everyone and his mother seems to have annointed the Habs the new great power from the East. Barry Melrose picks them to go the Cup Finals. Yeah, yeah, I know it's Barry Melrose, but still. Pierre McGuire loves the Habs too, this morning calling them the "most talented team in the East," and he's totally hot for DOOM. TSN has them ranked #2 in their NHL Power Rankings.

With the near-collapse of the Sens, inuries taking their toll, fans calling for the coach's head, closed-door meetings, their playoff-tested goalie a total head case, etc, etc, everyone has the Habs passing them this week when we play them twice. I say, time for a reality check.

Really, are we that good? Do we deserve to be placed as an elite team? The last 30 minutes of the Rangers game puts serious doubt in my mind. As HF10 so brilliantly wrote yesterday, "Plan the Parade ... no wait, the Sky is Falling." The Habs seem completely unable to shake that Jekyll and Hyde crap we've seen all year. Those 30 minutes were embarassing. Kovy reverting to the Enigma, D standing around like pylons, forwards checking the crowd for hot babes instead of skating. I was there; the fans could feel it happening. 21,273 people knew what the pundits won't seem to acknowledge - Hyde won't go away.

Sure, we're three points out of first in the East. We're also six points out of 8th. We've been lucky like a leprechaun diving into a wishing well with a horesehoe up his ass in avoiding any serious injuries. HueT is bound to get tired (and may have been on Sunday). The lack of regular production from anyone but the Kovy line should be a red flag. Carbo's love affair with Breezer is inexplicable. Carbo in general still has me worried.

Point is, all is not hunky dory. Those of us watching the Habs day in day out who aren't paid by the team or a local media outlet sucking up to the team have some sense of reality. As regular commentor Fear the Collapse always says, well, fear the collapse.

Here's your chance to prove me wrong boys. Elite team or middle of the pack? You decide. You have the power. McGuire says so.

91 comments:

Habsfan10 said...

Well said. Could have used more cursing.

THE GOLD BULL said...

Carbo is of "the great ones". R. Tremblay said so colisse.

http://www.cyberpresse.ca/article/20080202/CPSPORTS0101/802021041/7033/CPOPINIONS05

But he's an asshole. He also called us (upper level ticket owners) "fefans". You know why ? Cuz we bhooooooooed Breezer.

Loser Domi said...

"fefans"? That doesn't even make any sense to me. Is that some sort of Habs inside joke or something?

Also, those are the two most bored strippers I've ever seen. I mean, on this site. I mean, aw screw it. But at least they have some money for it!

Shmee said...

I think the Jekyll and Hyde comparison is a good one. All those people rating the Habs so highly (myself included) are rating on the potential we have seen from them in certain games. Its the last stretch of the season now, and time for the Habs to ramp it up consistently.

HabsFan29 said...

@LD - bored strippers, exactly. like the Habs in the second half of the Rangers game - collecting money for doing nothing.

and this is NOT what I wanted to read today: (habsinsideout.com)

"Canadiens defenceman Roman Hamrlik was sent home this morning with flu-like symptoms and is unlikely to face the Senators.

If he can't play, Patrice Brisebois will take his place."

Habsfan10 said...

Great. The one guy we can almost trust to cover for the Breezer is out, to be replaced by ... Breezer. Who gets the short straw as Breezer's partner tonight? Streit? Doom? Markov? Gorges or Frankie B?

Any advantage the Habs had with all the Sens injuries, flu, or headcaseitis is nullified.

Loser Domi said...

"headcaseitis" nice one, hehehe

Sherry said...

Thanks for the kind words guys, but just so you know, I'm holding you guys (and the Habs) directly responsible if my liver fails tonight. I hope you can live with that on your conscience.

HabsFan29 said...

Sherry we need a Habs-Sens drinking contest!

fezworth said...

I notice that Hamr is out with 'flu-like symptoms'. This might be late-onset December Swoon Syndrome (DSS)

I hope Hamr is a real outcast on the team. If he doesn't meet anyone else socially, we might have a chance at avoiding the worst of it.

HabsFan29 said...

alright Sherry I'm on my second bloody caesar and the game hasnt started yet!

and I want that alcoholic pudding recipe! i have never even heard of alcoholic pudding, but anything that combines alcohol and pudding has to be awesome!

Baroque said...

I will never, for the life of me, understand why these guys don't get flu shots.

Anyone in such close contact with so many other people should at least consider it.

(I wouldn't do it - but needles make my hyperventilate and I AM a social outcast.) :)

Damion said...

Reality check, ok. But there's middle ground between the Jekyll/Hyde and Parade/Chicken Little analogies.

I'm thinking Timothy Hutton in Beautiful Girls:
- face, solid 7 and a half
- body, solid 7 and a half
- personality, solid 7 and a half.

Fact is that the Habs *are* playing consistently well: 25 of 34 points since Christmas. No, we don't have a 70 point player, but we all know the Habs have been working on the "viable four line" team theory. It's hard to score like Ovechkin when, well, you're not Ovechkin, but also when the Habs' most used forward only averages 19 minutes a game.

I'm not expecting the Habs to consistently beat a healthy Ottawa team firing on all cylinders, but I don't think it's beyond the pale to suggest that the Habs have finally earned higher expectations.

It's been a while since I've run home to watch the Habs almost every game with the feeling that they're actually competitive. And, for someone who has to watch the crappy non-HD feed on Center-Ice, that says something.

HabsFan29 said...

Damion solidly logical at usual!

I agree, higher expectations have been earned. But only the expectations. When there are 5-10 games left and we are still 4th (or 1st) then I will actually believe, not just have expectations.

fezworth said...

@Damion - I like what you're saying, it makes me feel rather warm and fuzzy. But to be honest, I've felt that way before, and been burned. I have to side with HF29, and say that I need to see them pass the test this SEASON before I'll believe. Even this one game won't convince me.

Having said that, I'm totally with you on the running home to watch in Blur-o-vision (non HD). I think my heart is fully on the bandwagon, even if my head is reserving judgement...

Bryan said...

guys... that blonde chick looks like a dude... WTF !?

did you know that in january we won 8 out of 9 Tuesday and Thursday games. we'll beat those Sens tonight !!!!

HabsFan29 said...

Bryan you're looking at her face. You're right, I didn't notice

Bryan said...

haha i guess im a face man ??

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Evening all. Well, I brought my ball gag. Anybody want to let me know what the safety word is?

HabsFan29 said...

Hey SLC. Just read your post (Hi SLC's mom! sorry if you click on your son's links) and you've got it all right, but that only means classic trap game for the Habs. sure, Sens have, uh, "issues", but we always lose these

anyway, should be fun. or hell. we'll see!

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Mom has been clicking my links for years. It's tragic really. I'll tell you about it sometimes.

Here we go...and may God have mercy on my soul.

Senators Lost Cojones said...

KELLY!! Um...I mean, thanks Francis.

HabsFan29 said...

oh franky, oh Christo. no D-Goalie communication AT ALL this year. nice energetic start wasted.

HabsFan29 said...

JEEBUS. everything but score on that PP

Senators Lost Cojones said...

HF29, that PP is fucking scary as all get out. Christ!

At least our boys seem to have finally found their skating legs. So far...

HabsFan29 said...

if i were one to complain about refs, i might say that should be a penalty shot. but i'm not.

Senators Lost Cojones said...

HF 29, I'd have to agree. In fact, I was posting that just before blogger ate my comment.

And...there we are. Fuck! Don't just stare at him, Mesz! Go after him!

HabsFan29 said...

kovy! my god he can make things happen

Damion said...

crisse, that PPG was nice.

Sherry said...

and I want that alcoholic pudding recipe! i have never even heard of alcoholic pudding, but anything that combines alcohol and pudding has to be awesome!

You'll get it after Saturday. I have to see if it works first or turns into an epic failure.

I should not be drinking on a school night. I am going to feel this tomorrow.

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Wow...just...wow. I need more booze.

HabsFan29 said...

my god what passing

msevigny said...

I hate it when the game isn't televised in BC and I have to listen to the Habs radio guys gush over Montreal's beautiful passing. You bastards, at least make it sound like an ugly goal. It's not like I'd be listening to you if I could watch the game.

Sherry said...

Okay, Senators it was all nice and cute when you were pretending to be playing pond hockey but cut it out now, okay? FRICK.

HabsFan29 said...

who's watching RDS? since when does Carbo do in-period interviews with Yvon???

Damion said...

not as bad as watching NBC make Pierre McGuire bother Carbo during a break in the middle of the period.

HabsFan29 said...

Fuck I love my PVR. I have watched that 2nd goal 5 (ok 10) times. the best part (sorry SLC and Sherry) is like, 3 or 4 Sens players just swiveling their heads in unison looking at the cross-ice passes. it's friggin hysterical! (again, sorry SLC and Sherry)

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Okay, Blogger comments aren't working very well out here in dial up land, so if I suddenly disappear, please rest assured that that is the cause, and not, say, logging off in order to drink myself into a depression induced stupor.

Just thought I should point that out. Oh, hello Mister Crown Royal...

HabsFan29 said...

don't get me started on Blogger SLC

ok, 40 more minutes of that boys. god forbid

Senators Lost Cojones said...

JESUS FUCKING CHRIST REDDEN!! You're just STANDING there for CHRIST SAKE!

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Fucked up 3 on 1, comes back to bite us in the ass. Typical. Shoot me. Now. Please?

HabsFan29 said...

nice deflection!

Sherry said...

I'm going to need something stronger if I'm expected to sit through or continue to be alive for the rest of this game.

HabsFan29 said...

Not to worry guys. We still have half a game to screw this up. we remember sunday against the Rangers

Senators Lost Cojones said...

I would like it noted for the record that our opponents have not had a penalty called against them in exactly a game and a half.

Sherry said...

I think the fix is in. Does anybody else remember the last time the Senators had a power play?

HabsFan29 said...

...or this line could keep scoring.

not good, Pastry

it's noted SLC

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Sherry: Last Thursday. Against Boston.

Damion said...

it's like Gerber thinks he's a Cane again in the playoffs...

Senators Lost Cojones said...

HEY! IT'S A POWER PLAY!!

HabsFan29 said...

there's your penalty guys!

Sherry said...

What? A non-Senators player is going to the penalty box? There must be some mistake. I didn't know that was allowed!

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Are...you..kidding me?? And that save just ended the game.

Sherry said...

Huet wants to go with Neil? Is there anyway he can goad him and get him kicked out of the game? Anybody?

HabsFan29 said...

2 PP's in a row guys!

Damion said...

HueT's lateral movement REALLY scares me. He always overshoots himself out of position on his first move.

HabsFan29 said...

after 2 I am...pleased, I guess. For a change!

Guys it's February. It'll be a different story in April with Heater, Alfie, and a new coach

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Can we decline it?

Gawd, it would be nice if we looked like we actually cared. That's it. I'm going back to porn.

Senators Lost Cojones said...

@HF29: ...with Heater, Alfie, and Bryan Murray back behind the bench

Fixed. Desperately fixed.

Am I the only one who thinks "Nice try No Golov" is freakin' hilarious??

Sherry said...

Am I the only one who thinks "Nice try No Golov" is freakin' hilarious??

Haha, no I love it. I also enjoy "With extra Maple SyrUP!". We could really use him right now, actually. Think they'll take him for Emery?

Senators Lost Cojones said...

I also enjoy "With extra Maple SyrUP!"

I'm rather partial to "POKE check!"

HabsFan29 said...

"see you in da highlight reel!"

Senators Lost Cojones said...

By the way, FHF (collectively), before I descend into my black hole of alcohol and rage induced gibberish, thanks for the kind words above.

This is why mom always liked you best.

HabsFan29 said...

we just don't like 3 goal leads. FUCK

Sherry said...

Um, more of that please!

And you go lone Senators guy in crowd! You go!

HabsFan29 said...

fun fact: "playing 60 minutes" does not appear in the Habs playbook. wake the fuck up guys

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Doctor! We have a pulse!...is what I would have posted after Spezz's goal, had Blogger not kicked me off the comments for the last five minutes.

baroque said...

Florida can play 60 minutes.

Either that, or Toronto is slowly spiraling down the whirlpool of futility.

Were the Montreal fans celebrating too early again? When are they ever going to learn that's a stupid thing to do?!?!

HabsFan29 said...

kill me, quickly

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Well...this just got a little more interesting.

HabsFan29 said...

you're not killing me quickly enough people!

Damion said...

Eh! Ou sont les Canadiens?! Parce qu'ils ne sont pas là-là, mozusse!

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Nice elbow Mr. Markov...

HabsFan29 said...

alright, i can't breathe...

HabsFan29 said...

the phrase "holding on for dear life" comes to mind

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Spez almost made up for getting knocked off the puck in his own zone...with the net empty. Almost. FUCK!

HabsFan29 said...

god my heart.

some day, i dream of the Habs playing 60 minutes

Senators Lost Cojones said...

Well THAT was possibly the worst game I've ever seen Redden play. Ever. When is the trade deadline again?

See you Saturday night gentlemen. I'll bring the baby oil. You bring the non-sequential twenty dollar bills.

Sherry said...

Yeah, okay somehow I knew it wasn't going to happen.

HabsFan29 said...

saturday night indeed.

we can ALL revel in the fact the Panthers beat the Leafs 8-0!

baroque said...

some day, i dream of the Habs playing 60 minutes

They do play 60 minutes - they just spread it over three separate games.

What an infuriating little habit.

lawyergirl77 said...

Jesus - I'm in Ottawa and I just heard the score.

When the FUCK are we going to pull our head out of our ass and, you know, ACTUALLY PLAY when we're up by 3??

I swear to God we're in cahoots with RDS for ratings...

But TEE HEE! Leafs lost 8-0!!! WHOO HOO! But, should we be worried about their potential to bounce back against us??

SLC - If it's any consolation, we've been there...

HabsFan29 said...

hey LG! But, should we be worried about their potential to bounce back against us??

i thought the EXACT same thing. we're fucked

Senators Lost Cojones said...

LG77: Thanks. I do appreciate it. We've been there too. In 1996...

Even with the Leafs score, I have to go drink now. To dull the pain.

BUT...I will leave you with this thought. Heater might be back for Saturday night. Sweet dreams!

Habsfan10 said...

82 comments? That's awesome. The 12 inch goalie in the McDonald's commercial? Also awesome. "Quick, quick, like a chat" is my fave.

Not awesome? Blackout of Sportsnet East in Toronto, desperately checking the ticker on the Score and waiting an eternity to see "Final" under the scoreline. Christ. Time to break into Mini HF10's college fund to spring for RDS.

Loser Domi said...

@HF10: 82 comments IS awesome. I saw the Leafs score halfway, and figured I'd go back to reading about Soviet oppression since it was less depressing

PPP said...

But TEE HEE! Leafs lost 8-0!!! WHOO HOO! But, should we be worried about their potential to bounce back against us??

Ummm...no. I think you can safely bank those two points. Just ask the boys to not hurt anyone because you can't trade injured players. Especially Mats.

msevigny said...

Should we be worried about Thursday? Toronto always plays hard against Montreal. The Habs have been taking things too lightly lately instead of playing hard all game. And Toronto just got completely embarrassed at home tonight. It seems like a recipe for disaster.

Or, potentially, the Leafs will just collapse, lose 12-0 to the Habs, it will be the game of the decade, and poor Paul Maurice will hang himself. But I'm still nervous about it.

Bryan said...

@HF10... I wanted to watch it on SNET East too but saw that it was blacked out. lame. however, when i moved to calgary the first thing i did was buy a digital box just so i could order RDS. w00t. what a game! i got to call my pa at the end before he went to bed and rub it in his face lol

panger76 said...

Once again the Habs play half a game, but at least we didn't choke this time. I think hings might have been different if it was Spezza to Heater or Alfie instead of Robitaille in the second when HueT made that awesome save.

And I can't wait to use that "Nice shot Nogoalov" in a game. If I make any saves, that is.

Fear The Collapse said...

Nice to see me mentioned in the pre-game.
I have been afraid to fully believe in this team this year. Last year's debacle left a tough stain to remove.
I am really impressed by what teh young guys have accomplished so far. The tits, pleks and ak27 line is great. Imagine Koivu and Higgins could start contributing as well?