Kukla's Korner Hockey
The holidays are finally here! The Habs’ bags are packed and they’re ready to go, set to take off on Friday for a seven game road stint. Defenseman Andrei Markov will be boarding the flight with his teammates – and not just as a passenger.
On the shelf since the first game of the season with a lacerated tendon in his foot, the veteran blue-liner is poised to make his highly anticipated return this Saturday on Long Island. The original prognosis had Markov slated to come back only at the end of January, but the shifty rearguard will join new D partner Ryan O’Byrne on the Habs’ blue line this week and Marc-Andre Bergeron will move up to forward.
from Bertrand Raymond at RueFrontenac (translated),
Item in the news: the Canadiens and Philadelphia Flyers were discussing a trade involving goaltender Jaroslav Halak.
To know what it returns, there is nothing like talk to an actor who finds himself in spite of himself at the heart of this rumor: GM Bob Gainey.
“Bob, as a journalist, I’m what’s the story? I treat it as a new or I consider it a rumor, just another rumor?
Gainey is well known, does not usually comment on rumors. Rather than sending everyone into the left field, he usually prefers to say nothing.
“This is not for me to suggest what you write, the chief replies. All I can say is that it was I who called the Flyers, not the contrary. “
thanks to a KK reader for the pointer
Last night, Pens vs. Habs. No goal, the whistle had blown. Habs lose 3-2.
from Red Fisher of the Montreal Gazette via Faceoff.com,
Once, he was the darling of Canadiens fans because he wore the CH on his heart. Doors in Montreal and elsewhere were open to him. Life was good, but that was then, this is now - and it’s not a pretty picture.
Nilan: addicted to pain-killing drugs.
He is 51, a grandfather, and he remembers the first time he plummeted into the ugly, mind-bending culture of pills and booze. He can recall how in their own clawing, gnawing way they crept into his mind, convincing him they were the only way out of a life of pain. Instead, in the light of day it was a life gone wrong, including a divorce after 25 years of marriage. (Karen and Chris have two daughters - Pauline, 26, Tara, 19, and a son, Christopher, 23.) Where does it start? When? Why? “Probably the first time I saw the pills was after I finished playin’,” Nilan said.
“I was coachin’ the Chesapeake Icebreakers in the East Coast Hockey League. Two years. First year, I got coach of the year. Second year, I’d had surgery in the offseason and I took some Percocet. It’s an opiate. I got addicted to ‘em.
I needed them. If I didn’t have them, I was real sick.
from Bob McKenzie of TSN,
It’s a good bet the Montreal Canadiens will receive a significant (six figure) fine for playing an ineligible player on Tuesday night.
Ryan White was pulled from the game in the first period when the NHL noticed he was playing, but that the Canadiens had neglected to notify the league of his recall before the daily 5 p.m. deadline.
The Canadiens finished the game minus one forward. And now there is every reason to believe the Canadiens will be slapped with a hefty fine.
from Pat Hickey of the Montreal Gazette,
Andrei Markov will be back in the lineup sooner rather than later.
That’s the impression you get from talking to the veteran Canadiens defenceman.
Markov suffered torn leg tendons when it was sliced by Carey Price’s skate in a freak accident during the NHL season opener on Oct. 1 in Toronto. The original prognosis said Markov would be out of action until February.
But he has been skating with his teammates for the better part of a week.
“I feel pretty good, I’m skating with the team and I need a little more time,” Markov said.
There’s no pain in the leg but “it feels different.” The main obstacle to his return appears to be conditioning.
“I feel like I’m starting training camp, so I have to take it step by step.” Markov, who said he’s in daily contact with doctors, has a date in mind for his return, but he’s not willing to share it. But nobody should be surprised if Markov is back before the New Year.
via Matt Kalman of ESPNBoston,
Krejci tried to challenge Plekanec after the whistle, but he was rebuffed. In addition to Plekanec’s high-sticking penalty, the two players received unsportsmanlike conduct minors. Krejci says he has no idea what precipitated Plekanec’s hit because there were no words exchanged.
“I don’t care about suspended, but he should stick up for [himself],” Krejci said before Saturday night’s game with Toronto at TD Garden. “But he didn’t do it. He did what he did and he just left. He didn’t respond or anything. So I think it’s a gutless move. And we’ll play them again this year, so we’ll see what happens.”
Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli confirmed to ESPNBoston.com that he has been in contact with the NHL offices about the hit and the league is reviewing it.
The only thing missing was the voice of Danny Gallivan during the Montreal Canadiens Centennial Celebration last night.
Some of the greatest players in Montreal Canadiens history took to the ice Friday evening at Bell Centre as the organization celebrates its centennial.
Hockey Hall of Fame goalies Ken Dryden and Patrick Roy headed to opposite nets, with the skaters including Yvon Cournoyer, Guy Lafleur, Frank and Peter Mahovlich, Serge Savard, Steve Shutt, Guy Carbonneau and current general manager Bob Gainey.
The former star players took several laps around the ice, fired shots on net and flipped pucks into the crowd for delighted fans.
I’ve been glued to the TV watching the event. Great job by CBC, no commercials on a very special night. Sure brought back a lot of memories for me.
from Dave Stubbs of Habs Inside/Out,
No one in Montreal paid much attention on Dec. 4, 1909 when the Canadiens emerged from the womb, a franchise granted in the National Hockey Association for $1,000 – plus a $5,000 bank deposit to guarantee players’ salaries.
A few more people are watching today as the Habs turn 100, the Boston Bruins in town with the Canadiens having delivered two periods of dismal hockey last night in Buffalo, then a half-decent third in a 6-2 losing effort.
Fans will be talking all day, and for a day or two afterward, about tonight’s Centennial Game.
Game time is 8:00pm on NHL Network in the US and CBC in Canada. My understanding is festivities begin around 6:00pm. Hopefully we get see some of the pre-game show.
update 1:46pm, Just heard on NHL Live that coverage from Montreal will begin at 6:30pm. Great to hear, DVR will be working tonight.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
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