Kukla's Korner

The Upper Canadien

Big week for Habs

This is a big week, folks. And it’s not just because Van Halen’s new single comes out - thank God David Lee Roth is back - nope, it’s a big week because the Canadiens playoff hopes hinge on the next three weeks, and they need to string some wins together. Two in a row is good, but it doesn’t equal playoffs. As I see it, to get back into it, they need to win 7 of 10. And heck, the Senators just did it, so why can’t Montreal?

Things to watch for

Jaroslav Halak is back tomorrow, a game which will hold sentimentality for just about every Habs fan. That said, I still hope the Canadiens put 5 or 6 b him.

 

Scott Gomez returns, at some point, this week, if we are to believe what we’re being told by the team. Where does he fit in? Randy Cunneyworth stated today that he sees Gomez as a top 6 forward. So my question is: Gionta, Cammalleri, Plekanec, Kostitsyn, Eller, Desharnais…who isn’t top six this year?

Oh yeah, and what about that Cole guy?

Interesting question: which line is the Canadiens first line? The Eller line, which many might call the third line, has been playing as a top unit. My answer would probably be “whatever line Erik Cole plays on” (because he’s been that good), but let’s see what Mr. Cunneyworth does with the lines upon Gomez’s return.

On defence, Alexei Emelin continue to develop into a tough, intimidating presence on the blue line. I said it in September and I’ll say it again: this guy reminds of of Danny Markov, and in a good way.

Meanwhile, the trade deadline approaches, and the rumours are starting to multiply. I have no idea who might go/is staying/might come to Montreal, but I’ll say this: if Montreal is 10 points out of the playoffs by the end of January, Travis Moen is a goner, and I suspect Andrei Kostitsyn is, too.

Alright folks, that’s it for today. Time to turn up the speakers and get them ready for Van Halen 2012. A nice warmup for tomorrow’s return of Jaro. Let’s just hope he isn’t as good this time around.

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About The Upper Canadien

The Upper Canadien is your one stop shop for all things Montreal Canadiens. Since the summer of 2010, I've been providing Habs related news, notes, and most importantly, opinions. As a blogger, I don't believe it's my job to report the news, it's my privilege to comment on it. You may disagree with what I suggest. In fact, you most likely will. But that's the great part about blogging: it spurs opinion, comment and engages all involved. I've really enjoyed all the debate and commentary from readers thus far and I encourage everyone to respond with ideas on lineups, trades, logos, sweaters, mascots, whatever. The Upper Canadien is a conversation for all hockey fanatics.

I've come to Kukla's Korner with four years of campus radio and three years of sportswriting from my time at Mount Allison University on Canada's East coast. Not only do I not have any professional journalistic training, after five years in the corporate world, I've spent much of the past two years completing an MBA. Business by day, hockey by night, I'm a Canadiens fan through and through. I hope you enjoy reading as much as I do writing.

Questions or comments? theuppercanadien@kuklaskorner.com