Kukla's Korner Hockey
via Habs Inside/Out,
Depleted lineup tonight.
Andrei Kostitsyn is still recovering from having his bell rung against Phoenix.
Christopher Higgins is still recovering from his groin injury.
Georges Laraque was recovered from his groin injury; but after two games, it’s acting up again.
from James Duthie of TSN,
Welcome to Habapalooza. The schedule isn’t even complete yet, and already we know the Ring of Honour ceremony will be followed by (brace yourself): Builder’s Night (Oct. 28), Memorable Games in Canadiens History DVD release (Nov. 4), Patrick Roy’s sweater retirement (Nov. 22), Opening of Centennial Plaza (Dec. 4), Centennial Gala (Dec. 5), NHL All-Star Weekend (Jan 24-25), launch of the Canadiens Hall of Fame (April), NHL Draft (June 27), 8 “Vintage Jersey” games, and two “Original Six Salute” games. Oh ya, and the Stanley Cup Final* (June).
And I didn’t even get to the Special Edition Montreal Canadiens Monopoly Game, the commemorative stamps, and a special minted Habs Loonie (the only Canadian dollar that may rise in value this year).
from the CP via TSN,
A nasty hit on Andrei Kostitsyn opened the door for Georges Laraque to show why the Montreal Canadiens went looking for an enforcer last summer.
Laraque was front and centre in a rough and chippy second period as the Canadiens downed the Phoenix Coyotes 4-1 on two goals from Alex Tanguay and a goal and two assists from Saku Koivu on Saturday night, although they look to have lost their gifted left winger Kostitsyn for an undetermined period.
“Whether it was cheap hit or not, when one of your best players gets knocked out like that, you’re not going to say it’s OK - you want to respond to it,” said Laraque.
continued and watch a video of the hit below…
from Dave Stubbs of the Montreal Gazette,
At the Bell Centre last night, a century less a year after the Canadiens’ historic first game, the encomiums - glowing, praiseful words, if your Latin is rusty - were still overwhelming.
Right through a needlessly nailbiting 4-3 shootout victory over the Boston Bruins.
It began hours earlier as a playoff-like atmosphere gripped Montreal well before the home opener of the Canadiens’ 100th season. This after the team had taken five of six possible points in three road games, then returned home to a city where hockey matters and all else is filler until the next game.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
This is where the ghosts and the flesh and blood collide.
With the air around the Bell Centre thick with the history of a glorious past, the Montreal Canadiens prepared to kick off their 100th season with their first home game of the season Wednesday night.
No matter where players on the current roster turn, whether it’s to look at the two dozen Stanley Cup banners dangling from the Bell Centre rafters or the ring of honor or even in the stands where former players like Steve Shutt were on hand to watch their morning skate, the current roster is reminded of the significant burden of the past in this hockey-crazed province.
from Sean Gordon of the Globe and Mail,
It’s an ironic and somewhat startling move that reveals much about this coach: a calculated decision to do away with the role he personified during a stellar 19-year playing career.
As the Montreal Canadiens kick off their 100th season, Guy Carbonneau is electing not to ice a line of specialized checking forwards.
Instead, he will throw his lot in with a rotation of three offensive lines that will share more or less equal slices of ice time, and an aggressive, physical “energy” line that will likely play only sparingly.
from the Montreal Gazette,
Andrei Markov loves the playmaker role but the veteran defenceman is being asked to shoot the puck more as he moves into a new role with the No. 1 power play in the National Hockey League. Markov moves from the left point to the right point and that’s where the Montreal Canadiens look for the shot.
That’s where Sheldon Souray launched his rockets two years ago. And that’s where Mark Streit weaved his magic last season. With both players opting for free agency, Markov is being asked to fill the vacant spot.
from the CP,
The Stanley Cup is staying put in Hockeytown, according to a simulation of the 2009-08 season by Electronic Arts using its “NHL 09 video” game.
The simulation shows the Detroit Red Wings defeating the Montreal Canadiens four games to two in the Stanley Cup final, with Pavel Datysuk capturing the Conn Smythe Trophy.
via Habs Inside/Out,
In his state of the team session with media this morning, Bob Gainey said Guy Carbonneau has signed a new contract.
Old Velcro Lips would not disclose duration of the deal and, God knows, did not reveal any $$$ figures.
From the Canadian Press,
Several NHLers consider Laraque the league’s top heavyweight and make sure to give the six-foot-three, 245-pounder ample space.
“He’s probably the toughest in the league,” says Ottawa Senators enforcer Chris Neil. “He’s strong, he’s powerful. It’s one of those things where you watch his fights, meanwhile, when he’s out there on the ice, he’s coming after you, so you’ve got to be aware.”
Calgary Flames captain Jarome Iginla, no stranger to the rough stuff, agrees.
“I wouldn’t want to get caught in a line brawl with him,” he says with a smile.
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