Friday, March 21, 2008

Ladies and Gentlemen ... Round 1 Review, Round 2 Preview: Habs Look to KO Bruins Playoff Hopes

The Habs and Bruins home and home is half done, and so far it looks like every other game between these two age-old rivals. Will the script be the same in Round 2 at the Bell Centre Saturday night? Stay tuned to FHF to find out!!

Plan the Parade: 7 and 0. 10 straight dating back to last year. The longest winning streak against Boston since 1944-45. Is there anything better than lording it over the Broons? No. Nothing more better. The Danse a Dix got back in the groove, especially Kovy, with 2 "holy shit!" goals and a "holy shit!" assist to boot. As poster msevigny said last night, every time Kovy got near the net, the whole arena gasped. Koivu, Gui! Gui! Gui! and Ryder scored the nicest pass-pass-shoot goal of the evening. The defence played admirably after the loss of Doom (more in a minute). Greek Lightning showed why his name needs to be on the dressed list every night come playoff time. TFS righted the ship after the proverbial "fighting the puck" first period, and Carbo seems to have stumbled onto an excellent new line combo in Higgins-Grabs-Little Tits. In fact, I like that line so much, they're getting their own paragraph.

Frankly, I wasn't happy that Grabs was in the lineup, despite his success in Hamilton. It seemed that his skill set wasn't what the Habs needed, especially when he was in the lineup in place of Mad Max, who really gives the Habs an extra level of feisty they sorely lack. However, with Mad Max taking Slowinski's spot, and Koivu hooking up with Ryder and Gui! Gui! Gui!, suddenly Grabs is with two smart, defensively responsible wingers in Higgins and Little Tits, and any defensive lapses are more easily papered over. Little Tits looks like he could be one of the guys mentioned as a "draft day steal" for years to come. For a young player, his defensive positioning is phenomenal (witness the steal he made on a threatening Bruins rush last night, or the fact that Carbo had him out there with a minute left to kill the game off) and he's already one of the team's best passers. Higgins is Higgins; a bulldog with great hands and hockey smarts to spare. Grabs is fast and smart and skilled. I hope Carbo realizes that the lineup last night is his best and that Slowinski, Breezer and El Dandy only see the ice during practice for the rest of the year.

As always, the bottom line is Habs 4, Bruins 2. Good triumphs over evil, AGAIN.

The Sky is Falling: The first period was not good. The Habs were listless and lucky that all the Bruins huffing and puffing didn't amount to anything (some of that can be attributed to the Bruins continual parade of talentless grinders ... "The Boston Bruins: Cheap, Hardworking, Not Talented Enough to Truly Compete Since 1979!" is probably printed on the season ticket brochure.) Price looked off for the first, and only the aforementioned dearth of scoring talent in Black and Gold kept them in it.

Greek Lightning stood up for Big Tits after a cheap shot, and got himself a nasty shiner for his trouble. He's going to feel that for a few days. Worse news was the loss of Doom less than five minutes in to the dreaded "lower body injury" on a seemingly harmless play. If Komisarek is out for any amount of time, bad, bad things will happen. You tell me Breezer in for Komisarek isn't a sky-falling scenario. You can't. It's as bad as you think. As an aside, if you don't love Mark Streit's versatility by now, you're an idiot. The team barely missed a beat last night because of the Swiss Mister's ability to switch back to the blueline. He needs to be resigned pronto.

Welcome Back, Ya Big Stupid Bastard: Zdeno Chara, back from missing five games with an injury: Minus 2, embarrassed by Kovy twice, would have been minus three except he was on the ice for the cheap bullshit late goal scored after Thorton spun Price around in the crease with no call on the play. Chara also found time to start his usual stupid scrums after a couple of whistles, and to fall like a 6 foot 7, 240 pound girl when he and Little Tits went for the same puck with less than a minute left. How good were his defence partners in Ottawa, because this guy looks like a useless stiff against Montreal every time. On his 60th birthday, Bobby Orr wept for his old team, because Chara gifts the Habs at least a goal a game all by himself. Hey, speaking of gifting goals ...

I knew Gerry Cheevers. I was stopped repeatedly by Gerry Cheevers. You sir are no Gerry Cheevers: Early in the summer, some handsome blogger pointed out that Tim Thomas could dress like Batman and he was still going to give up 5 a game vs Montreal this year. Last night Thomas let three soft goals in. Alex Auld is the next best option for the Broons. After too many seasons of Andy Moog, Reggie Lemelin, Gillies Gilbert or Cheevers giving the Habs fits, I would do cartwheels to see those two sieves guarding the crease if I was wearing the CH.

Next Evil, Evil, Black and Gold Wearing, Didn't We Just School You Assholes Yesterday? Foe: Glad you asked! It's time to set up Round 2. Remember, you can't spell Game Preview without Game Review!

Waiting in Line details: Saturday night, 7:00 pm start, at the Bell Centre. Habs try and make it 8 Straight and sweep the season series against the old enemy. Price probably getting the start, who knows which career back-up the Bruins drop in the crease. Habs fans might start the Ole chant in the warmup.

Pay your cover charge to: Ghosts of the Garden. Such a great blog name, I give them the honours for a second straight game.

Hot sexy Habs to Watch: Um, Kovy? Yeah, Kovy. Greek Lightning deserves some attention, because he absolutely thrives in these sorts of games. Gui! Gui! Gui! growing in stature each and every game ... can I dream about a LeClair-like playoff coming out party?

Skanky Habs to Watch: Oh please, let Komisarek be okay. Oh please. Otherwise, we are going to be witness to one of the Breezer or El Dandy, back where they don't belong.

Hot Sexy Bruins to Watch: I'm not even going to dignify that with an answer. The B's are in a freefall, and the two games they have left vs Buffalo will probably be the final nails in their ninth place coffin.

Skanky Bruins to Watch: Zdeno Chara, the big dumb bastard will be good for one monumental fuck-up someone on his salary shouldn't make. The random "seasoned vet" keeping Tuuka Rask's crease warm is always good for a laugh.

My bracket is already shot because of that damn Kansas State/USC game: Rumour has it there is some sort of basketball tourney going on Stateside. Apparently it's a pretty big deal. Might want to check it out between Canadiens goal celebrations.

Post-game entertainment: If you think I'm suggesting a strip club on Easter weekend, you're insane. Get thee to St. Patrick's Basilica; the Easter Vigil starts at 8, but they'll just be getting to the good part by the time the game ends. Don't worry if you aren't Catholic; at Christmas and Easter, 90% of the people in attendance aren't really Catholic either.

Okay, let's hear your thoughts on our last regular season dance with the Bruins in the comments.


Bryan said...

i know you don't like breezer, smoke, and dandy, but props to them for their attitudes. you have to hand it to them, they've never complained once. i'd rather have them backing us up than someone with samsonov's attitude.

Anonymous said...

One of your game re-previews.

Put Swiss Mr. on the blue line, rest KRex and insert Begin.

Otherwise, nice CHampion belt held up by the pretty gal.

- 25Cups

Anonymous said...

One of your game bestre-previews.

Habsfan10 said...

bryan, you are absolutely right. The vets have taken their visits to the press box very well. El Dandy said he wasn't happy, but Breezer in particular has been very positive. I will give him that.

Brian said...

What do you guys/gals think about giving Valentenko a serious look if Komisarek is out for any length of time? I have heard that he has some nasty to him that could be put to good use heading into the playoffs.

Bryan said...

i think it's way too late to experiment like that... if anything it just give O'Byrne a lot more ice time.

Brian said...

Bryan: I agree with you, that's probably the best option. I just don't want to see the Breezer inserted in the lineup under any circumstances. BTW: Max Pacioretty was given the Rookie of the Year Award in the CCHA. Can't wait to see him in action later this evening against Northern Michigan.

Anonymous said...

"I knew Gerry Cheevers. I was stopped repeatedly by Gerry Cheevers. You sir are no Gerry Cheevers"

Hee hee boys. Another good one.

Shit. Multiple organ failure. Gotta go.


panger76 said...

Sorry to burst the 7-0 bubble, but I'm going to the game so you can pretty much bank on a Habs' no-show tomorrow. The fact that Komo won't be in the lineup just reinforces my belief.

Furthrr to the "vets are taking the press box view pretty well" theme, I REFUSE to give Breezer any credit: if you don't think that Gainey/Carbo told Breezer that he would be a 7th D and see press box time before they agreed to take him back, you're crazy. As for Slowinski, until July 1st I'm referring to him as "Slowinski's Expiring Contract".

prairiegirlwarriorpoet said...

DOOM out for 3 weeks! Yikes! Looks like the Habs are coming down with a case of "Breezeritis".

Bob said...

Streit playing D and Begin replacing him up front to make up for Komi's spring break.

That's more Jack Adams like.

Valentenko should stay in steel town for now.

Panger, forget about a no show. The phone booth will be rocking tonight, hope to 'hear' you there.

Nose bleed Bob

Sonia said...

Gui! is also out tonight with neck spasms. Slowinski in for him.

Brian said...

I was a little disappointed that Max Pacioretty didn't play last night for Michigan after copping the CCHA Rookie of the Year Award the night before. I was heartened to find out, however, that he was suspended from the game for fighting. (That almost never happens in NCAA D-1 hockey.) He'll be back tonight when the Wolverines play Miami of Ohio for the CCHA championship. That's my Plan B if things go awry at the Phone Booth this evening.

Loser Domi said...

From an NHL blog about the stupidest names: 11. (MTL) Patrice Brisebois
- actually pronounced ‘BR-EE-Z-BW-AR’
French hating fans are calling him ‘bri-see-boyz’. Ironically ‘Brisebois’ almost sounds like ‘breezeblock’ which is quite apt given that he plays like one.

I'll let you say what you will. The whole thing is here:

Brian said...

That didn't take too long!

msevigny said...

I got in late and missed the first, how have the Habs looked? And is this diving shit Boston's big plan to keep from going 0-8? I guess it's as good as anything they've tried so far.

Loser Domi said...

mmmmmm...I love it when Boston is losing.

Now watch, they're gonna come back and win it 10-2. I take full responsibility for this event should it occur

Sonia said...

@LD - We're holding you responsible or this second period. Ugh!

PPP said...

Merci beaucoup Montreal!

msevigny said...

Montreal wins, goes 8-0, Boston sucks. It is a day of celebration for all. Let us never speak of the actual game again.

Sonia said...

Thank you Saku. You saved Easter.

Anonymous said...

Man, as a former B's fan, I miss the 1980s with a passion, and 88 series versus Montreal. I never knew you guys considered the B's rivals like we did to you. I figured with the Habs, it was always the Leafs.

Please keep pouring this shit on. Jeremy Jacobs needs to be vilified for killing hockey in the US.

And yes, in the US. Without Boston's influential media market, hockey died here. NY was never a hockey town, and LA is a joke; Chicago and Detroit and MN and Buffalo never had the pull. Hockey was promoted in the US by the excellent Boston sportswriters and filtered throughout the country by the tons of college kids first exposed to hockey through Orr, Espo and later Bourque and Number 8.

I grew up literally praying and thanking god in front of the TV when the B's finally beat Montreal in the playoffs. Now, I couldn't tell you how to buy a ticket (not that I'd ever watch a game in that shithole).

May Jacobs rot in hockey hell for this mess. It's all his fault. The family is a bunch of criminals for doing this.