Kukla's Korner Hockey
From Jim Kelly at Sportsnet,
The Habs are a surprising second in the Northeast Division (to Ottawa) and through Monday night were 6-2-2 and tied for third overall in the Eastern Conference and tied for fifth overall with the likes of Philadelphia and Colorado. Isn’t that where Vancouver or maybe Calgary was supposed to be?
To be sure, both the Flames and the Canucks have had their problems, especially in regards keeping the puck out of their respective nets, but the Habs have out-pointed every Canadian entity except the Senators and even have some games in hand in comparison to some teams ahead of them in the standings.
How is this happening you ask? Well, in a word, goaltending.
Tack on another it would be defence and after that add things like timely scoring, smart positional play, a potent power-play attack (often the best in the league so far) and consistently strong lines.
From the CP via TSN,
The Montreal Canadiens are calling for an NHL rule change after defenceman Francis Bouillon suffered a shoulder injury from a hit in the dying seconds of overtime.
The Canadiens feel that Pittsburgh defenceman Sergei Gonchar should not have been allowed to take part in a shootout after he was called for boarding with 1.6 seconds left in the five-minute overtime in Montreal’s 4-3 win over the Penguins on Saturday night.
from Habs Inside/Out,
Congratulations to Canadiens forward Alex Kovalev, who last night scored the 800th point of his NHL career – in his 1,000th game.
*view some pictures of Kovalev in action during his 1,000th game…
(sorry. link no longer available)
from the Montreal Gazette,
While many people were enjoying the sunshine this summer, a group of devoted fans from across North America that congregate on Habsinsideout.com decided they should get together to watch their favourite team up close in Montreal.
What started as an innocent comment from Brian Jones, known as Yeats on the website, turned into the Habs Fan Summit, a full day of events that brought Canadiens fans from across the continent together on Saturday to watch the Habs defeat the Buffalo Sabres 4-2.
Yes, he was, so says legendary hockey writer Red Fisher in this highlight reel remembering Richard’s 500th goal.
It is Friday night, you want a little hockey, take 2 minutes to watch this glorious video…
Following Tuesday’s loss to the Panthers, the Canadiens associate captain voiced his frustration with the tactics that were used in the dying moments that allowed Florida to tie the game.
“In the last two minutes, we knew they were going to put a lot of pressure on us,” Kovalev told the TEAM 990 in Montreal. “It was just my idea that we could have taken a timeout, get organized and get the right people on the ice. Maybe it could have been better. That’s what I saw from the bench.”...
On Thursday, Kovalev was critical of the media for creating a story where there was none.
“Everybody knows nothing is going on and everything is good between me and Carbo,” Kovalev told reporters. “It’s just you guys try to have a competition between each other and try to twist words, who twisted words better.”
From the CP via TSN,
George Gillett, the owner of the team and the Bell Centre they call home, is challenging the city’s tax assessment for the downtown hockey building.
The city evaluates the Bell Centre at $225 million but Gillett insists it’s worth only $75 million and now both parties are headed to Quebec’s administrative tribunal on Nov. 12 for a ruling.
The city has hired a battery of lawyers and experts to fight the case.
Gillett also wants a tax refund, which could go as high as $32 million, saying he’s been overtaxed.
from Dave Stubbs at Habs Inside/Out,
Let’s revisit Cannonball Pitre, the first man to sign a playing contract with the Canadiens, and that first historic game that changed Montreal forever.
read on and some great, old-time pictures…
What a wonderful piece by Mr. Stubbs. Makes you want to put on one of those heavy wool sweaters and find a pond to skate on.
from Jack Todd of the Montreal Gazette,
The goalie controversy aside, this is an intriguing Canadiens team. The major components are similar to last year’s squad that missed the playoffs, but Carbonneau is reaping large benefits from small changes, like moving Mathieu Dandenault to forward and Mark Streit back to the blue line.
Dandenault is coming off a so-so season on defence, but looks good up front, while Streit shows the confidence, leadership and shot from the point they talk about in Switzerland. Streit doesn’t have the howitzer of the departed Sheldon Souray, but he has a hard, accurate shot and he is a mobile, fluid skater who doesn’t make many mistakes.
Then there is Bryan Smolinski, a player everyone liked in his various incarnations as an opponent, now bringing his grit and smarts to the Canadiens. And Tomas Plekanec, Chris Higgins and Mike Komisarek, playing like the young veterans they are.
more on the Canadiens…
from the Montreal Gazette,
Huet is aware he and Price are competing for the No. 1 job and said that’s the way it should be.
“It has to be like that,” Huet said. “The coach is going to use the best goalie, the guy who’s playing the best during the games and that pushes me, for sure, to be better and get the job done.”
Price describes Huet as the perfect mentor for a young goaltender, although Huet was at a loss to explain exactly what he does in that role.
“I think the important thing is that I treat him like everyone else,” Huet said. “But you should ask him.”
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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