Kukla's Korner

The Upper Canadien

Habs top Isles

The Canadiens won their second in a row, blowing a 3-1 lead but eventually beating the Islanders 5-3. Isles’ goaltender Al Montoya wasn’t particularly sharp on this night, and the difference for the Canadiens was largely the fourth line, but a wins a win and Montreal will take it.

Quick highlights: Tomas Kaberle notched an assist, he now has three in two games as a Hab, and he is certainly making an impact on the powerplay. It’s very easy to see how Kaberle slows the play down and makes a first pass as the pp sets up. Something the Canadiens have been missing all year.

Hal Gill scored a goal. That doesn’t happen very often. Had to mention it.

Petteri Nokelainen scored on a howitzer mid-third, which proved to be the winning goal, and set up a goal earlier in the game.

Louis Leblanc continues to play above expectations, and while he’s likely headed back to the AHL when injured players return, he’s been a breath of fresh air.

Lars Eller may not have the moves like Jagger, but he’s got moves, period. He drives me crazy with his ill-timed penalties, but on this night, he was a highlight reel. In the end, the scoresheet only showed an assist, but Eller could have had 2 or 3 goals had the puck gone his way. Perhaps Eller is, finally, turning into the player every Montrealer hoped he would.

On the whole, the Canadiens nab another two points and move closer to a spot in the top eight. Frustratingly though, they blow another two goal lead in the third period, after they stop forechecking with the lead. However, Jacques Martin isn’t about to change his approach. Can the Habs adjust so that they stop caving late in games?

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I think that there is a lot more negative to take out of this game than positive. Fact is the Habs won only because they were playing a bunch of incompetent boobs. On top of that, they couldn’t even dominate this hapless team. They made it far closer than it needed to be and relied on Hal Gill, of all people, to come through with a key offensive contribution. This team has to get going fast and start playing a consistent game shift to shift.

Posted by BlackXinu on 12/14/11 at 08:13 PM ET

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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.

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